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the silver is deteriorated in value, throws light on the promise contained in Isa. i. 25. The prophet having, in ver. 22nd, compared the Jewish people to silver, adds, still speaking in the name of the Lord, “I will turn my hand upon thee, and purge away thy dross, and take away all thy tin."




The scientific term botany is used in a very comprehensive sense, so as to include all vegetable productions.

We have in our introductory remarks, adverted to the order in which the Hebrew legislator enumerates the several classes of the vegetable world, in his narrative of the creation. Solomon showed the same adherence to system, in his treatise on natural history, mentioned in 1 Kings iv. 33, advancing from the lesser to the larger : from grass, including the minutest species of whatever is green, to shrubs or trees of the smaller kind; and from these, again, to trees, which differ, not only in their enlarged dimensions, but in their permanency also.

The common term for herbaceous productions in the Hebrew writings is desha, although it is also specifically applied to grass,

The Hebrews, as Wetstein remarks, divided all kinds of vegetables into trees and herbs; the former of which the Hellenists call &ulov, the latter, Xoptos, under which they also comprehended all sorts of grass, corn, and flowers. (See Matt. vi. 30; Luke xii. 28, etc.) There is great impropriety, as the late editor of Calmet has shown, in our version of Prov. xxvii. 25, “The hay appeareth, and the tender grass sheweth itself, and herbs of the mountains are gathered.” If the tender grass is but just beginning to show itself, the hay, which is grass cut and dried, after it has arrived at maturity, ought by no means to be associated with it, still less to precede it. Mr. Taylor takes the word, here rendered hay, to mean the first shoots, the rising, just budding spires of grass. So the wise man says: “ The tender risings of the grass are in motion, and the buddings of the grass (gråss in its early state] appear; and the tufts of grass, proceeding from the same root, collect themselves together, and by their union, begin to clothe the mountain tops with a pleasing verdure.” Surely the beautiful progress of vegetation, as described in this passage, must appear to every reader of taste as too poetical to be lost; but what must it be to an eastern beholder—to one whose imagination is exalted by a poetic spirit-one who has lately witnessed an all-surrounding sterility — a grassless waste ! The same impropriety, but in a contrary order, and where, perhaps, the English reader would be less likely to detect it, occurs in the English version of Isa. xv. 6: “For the waters of Nimrim (water is a principal source of vegetation shall be desolate, departed, DEAD; so that (the hay, in our translation, but as it should be the tender, just sprouting risings of the grass are withered, dried up; the buddings of the grass are entirely ruined ” [“ there is no green thing,” in our version). The following verse may be thus translated: “ Insomuch that the reserve he had made, and the deposit he had placed with great care in supposed security, shall all be driven to the brook of the willows." A similar gradation of poetical imagery is used in 2 Kings xix. 26: “ Their inhabitants were of shortened hand, dismayed,

ashamed; they were as grass of the field (vegetables in general]; as the green buddings of grass; as the tender risings on the house tops; and those, too, struck by the wind, before it is advanced in growth to a rising up.” What a climax of imbecility! A tree is, in the Hebrew Scriptures, called otz,

from a verb which signifies “to make firm," or steady”; and it is thus distinguished from herbage or plants, which are more soft and loose.





I. WERE all the known objects diffused over the surface of the earth, submitted to the examination of a certain number of individuals accustomed to nice and patient investigation, but altogether ignorant of any arrangement hitherto proposed, there can be but little doubt that the same classification would be adopted by all; and that the objects would be divided into three grand assemblages; namely, minerals, plants, and animals, such being in fact, for the purposes of description, at least, the most convenient distribution that could be adopted. Thus, there is no difficulty in distinguishing this mineral body from that plant, or this plant from a horse, an elephant, or any other quadruped. Yet, when we come to examine the confines of these several kingdoms of Nature, we find that so nice are the shades and gradations, and so gradual the transitions from one class of bodies to the other, that objects frequently present themselves, to which it would be difficult to assign their proper compartment.

However striking, therefore, the distinctions between animal and vegetable life, in their more perfect and elaborate forms, as we approach the contiguous extremities of the two kingdoms, we find these distinctions fading away so gradually, Shade, unperceived, so softening into shade,

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