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miles above Heliopolis. If any farther confirmation be wanting, it may be obtained from the Arabic version of the Bible; where the land of Goshen is always interpreted Sadir, or the land of Saïd: and Arabian evidence must have weight in respect to an history of that nation.
53 Vansleb tells us, that Sahid signifies a place or region higher than another : but 5* Leo supposes it to signify terrestris. If my opinion be well grounded, the province received its name from the first of the Shepherd kings: and the etymology at this distance of time is hardly to be arrived at. It is pretty certain, that Saïd, Saït, and Saïtes are originally the same as Seth, and Sethus, a naine, by which one or more of the princes of the country were called ; and particularly the first Pastor king. He is represented in the mythological history of Egypt, as the brother of Osiris, and is called Typhon; and is mentioned as having been in a constant state of war with Osiris. He was the first king of the Aurite, as I have shewn: and the dynasty of the Aurita was the most antient of any in Egypt; as Syncellus witnesses from the old Chronicle ; though he supposes them to have been gods: 55 [Θεων] βασιλειαν πρωτον των Αυριτων. This name
53 Vansleb. pag. 13. 54 Ab Al Cairo ad Bugia confinia, Sahid, id est, Terrestrem.
SS Syncellus. pag. 51.
signifies, if we may believe Plutarch, a person of high rule; a man of violence : but this interpretation I do not much depend on. It was not an Egyptian name, but a Babylonish; as may be seen in the annals of that nation. And this leads me, before I conclude, to take notice of a mistake in an Assyrian or Babylonish dynasty, similar to what I have mentioned in the Egyptian ; which will afford the highest confirmation to what I have been saying. The tenth king in the list is by Eusebius termed Altadas; and by Moses 5* Choronensis, from Maribus of Catina, he is called Azatagus. However different they may appear, these are certainly the same name, only mixed, and transposed. Altadas is Al Tsaïd, or 57 Seth: and Azatagus, or, as it should be read, Alzatagus, is Out Al Tsaït with the Greek termination subjoined. They have suffered a transposition, like that of the name of Salatis : but, when traced to their original elements, are found to be Saïd, Saït, and Seth; as they were at different times expressed. Africanus puts the matter out of all doubt: for he expressly calls the person Seth or Sethos, who is the
56 Moses Choronensis Hist. Armeniæ. lib. 1.
51 Theophilus Antiochenus tells us, that Seth gave name to the country. Ad Autolyc. lib. 3. pag. 396. All these little frago ments of history accord ; and serve to the establishment of what I have been endeavouring to prove.
Altadas of Eusebius. Hence somebody has added in the dynasty of Africanus, as quoted in the canon of the above writer, 58 Esfws (Artadas Evveßro ;] that is, the Altadas of Eusebius is the Seth of Africanus.”
Whoever would unravel the mysteries, with which the writings of the Grecians are obscured, must sometimes make use of their errors for a clue; and from their mistakes find out their meaning. If take things in the gross, as they occur, we shall find ourselves greatly mistaken. The histories of antient date seem to have undergone the same fatality, as the cities, of which they treat. We see in both surprising memorials of antient achievements; but attended with vast chasms and interruptions, which it is very difficult to supply. The materials too have in many parts been mixed; and evidently bear marks of interpolation and change. They put one in mind of the walls of Athens, which were built out of the ruins of the city, when it had been sacked by the Persians : wherein were to be seen architraves, pillars, entablatures, fragments of every species of architecture, thrown together without order, or design; and lying in every direction, just as chance had allotted. The like confusion is to be
observed amid the splendid ruins of antient history. It is the duty therefore of a good architect to reduce, if possible, the scattered fragments to order ; to raise the inverted column, to adapt the capital to the shaft, and to place all on a proper basis. This, I confess, is beyond my abilities to compass; though, I hope, that I have contributed some small matter towards it; and may possibly make farther advances.