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founder of the kingdom of Egypt. Its name signified "The mansion, or palace of Ammon." Herodotus says the Egyptians called Jupiter by the name of Ammon;" and this city, the same as the celebrated THEBES, the Greeks called Diopolis, "The city of Jupiter," and " Jupiter Ammon," the "Mansion of Jupiter," as a famous temple was erected at Thebes in honour of that imaginary divinity.
Thebes was built, according to the mythology of some, by Osiris, a great deity of the Egyptians, son of
Jupiter and Niobe: but according to others it was erected by Busiris, a king of Egypt, a son of Neptune, who, with great cruelty, sacrificed all foreigners to Jupiter.
Thebes, or "Populous No," was eighty furlongs or ten miles in length, at the commencement of the Christian era: but this was little in comparison of its ancient magnitude, before it was ruined by Cambyses, when it was said to have been no less than four hundred and twenty furlongs, or fifty-two miles and a half in length. In its glory, Thebes is said to have been able to send out at once two hundred chariots, and ten thousand fighting men from each of its hundred gates! According to the epitaph of Rhampses, 700,000 soldiers dwelt in Thebes, so prodigious was the number of inhabitants in this "POPULOUS NO."
Homer has celebrated the greatness of this magnificent city :
"Not all proud Thebes' unrivall'd walls contain
The world's great empress on th' Egyptian plain,
Diodorus says, "we have heard that several successive kings were ambitious to improve the city with presents of gold and silver, with ivory and a multitude of colossal statues; and that there was not any city under the sun so embellished with columns of one entire stone. The buildings have remained to modern times; but the gold and silver, and all the costly ivory and precious stones, were pillaged by the Persians, when Cambyses set fire to the temples of Egypt. So immeuse, they report, were the riches of Egypt at this period, that from the rubbish, after plundering and burning, were taken more than three hundred talents of gold, and of silver two thousand three hundred."
We are not able accurately to trace the progressive steps of the destruction of the idolatrous and wicked Thebes, as predicted by the inspired prophets, Jeremiah xlvi, and Ezekiel xxx. But it was pillaged by the Assyrians and Babylonians, then by the Persians, and afterwards by the all-conquering Romans. Ptolemy Lathyrus, an Egyptian king, besieged Thebes for three years, after having defeated the rebellious troops in the field; and having taken the city, in the year 81 before the Christian era, according to Prideaux, destroyed its greatness. Dr. Prideaux says, "Lathyrus, on his taking the place, handled it so severely for this rebellion, that, from being the greatest and wealthiest city in Egypt, he reduced it to so low a condition, that it never after any more made a figure."
The ruins of ancient Thebes are of so immense an extent as to convince the spectator that fame has not magnified its size: for its monuments rest on two chains of contiguous mountains, while its tombs occupy the valleys towards the west, far on into the desert. A large temple on the eastern side is more than two leagues and a half distant from Medinet-Abu, where the most western temple is situated. The Arab village of Karnac is built on a small part of the site of a single temple.
Denon describes the remains of this temple thus: "Of the hundred columns of the portico alone, the smallest are seven feet and a half in diameter, and the largest twelve. The space occupied by the circumvallation of the temple contains lakes and mountains. In short, to be enabled to form a competent idea of so much magnificence, the reader ought to fancy what is before him to be a dream, as he who views the objects themselves rubs his eyes to know whether he is awake. avenue leading from Karnac to Luxor, a space nearly
half a league in extent, contains a constant succession of sphinxes and other chimerical figures to the right and left, together with fragments of stone walls, of small columns, and of statues."
Luxor is also built on the site of the ruins of a temple, not so large as that of Karnac, but in a better state of preservation, the masses not having as yet fallen through time, and by the pressure of their own weight. The most colossal parts consist of fourteen columns of nearly eleven feet in diameter, and of two statues in granite at the outer gate, buried up to the middle of the arms, and having in front of them the two largest and best-preserved obelisks known. The French, when in Egypt, deemed their means insufficient, not to hew out, but merely to transport these two monuments, which are not more than a fragment of one of the numerous edifices of the astonishing city of Thebes.
Denon, in speaking of the gate of the temple, which is now become the entrance to the village of Luxor, remarks, Nothing can be more grand, and at the same time more simple, than the small number of objects of which this entrance is composed. No city whatever makes so proud a display at its approach as this wretched village, the population of which consists of two or three thousand souls, who have taken up their abode on the roofs and beneath the galleries of this temple, which has, nevertheless, the air of being uninhabited."
On visiting the palace of Luxor, the first objects which attract attention, are two obelisks of a single block; they are placed in the front of a mole at the distance of about fourteen paces. Between them and the mole are two colossal statues of black granite, about three paces from the mole, and eight from the obelisks; so that, in the space of eleven paces, these enormous objects are brought together, each of which, in an insulated position, would astonish the beholder by its grandeur. The taste of the Egyptians led them to form masses of those objects, which we employ our utmost attention to keep in detached situations. Their architects may also be reproached for the want of symmetry which appears in the disposition of these monuments. Neither the obelisks, nor the colossal figures, are in a line with each other, or with the gate.
These defects in the whole, are, however, forgotten on observing the execution of the parts: there is no work of art existing, which can bear a comparison with these obelisks. The Barbarians who destroyed the monuments of Upper Egypt, appear in some measure to have respected these; and though they endeavoured to cut one of them at the base in order to overturn it, they seem, even in this act of violation, to have avoided doing any injury to the figures which enrich it. These figures are disposed in three columns; those in the middle are cut to the depth of two inches; the larger figures in the right and left columns, are about an inch deep, and the small ones about nine lines: the ground of these is in its rude state, which gives them a different colour from the middle column, where it is polished with as much care as a precious stone. The obelisks terminate in a small pyramid, whose supports describe a curve. Their size is unequal, and they rest upon a base which is about fifteen feet beneath the surface. The two colossal figures placed behind them, which are of black granite, are thirty-eight feet in height, and in a sitting posture, with their hands resting on their thighs: the extremities of these statues are of in different workmanship, but some of the parts are admirable examples of sculpture.
To the left, on leaving the mole, is a colonnade, now blended with Turkish habitations. The two wings of the building, which were behind the mole, are entirely
dilapitated. They led to a second colonnade, which still subsists, and is formed of two rows of the lotus columns: its total height is fifty-six feet, its diameter nine, the space between the capitals thirteen, and the intercolumniation fifteen feet.
At fifteen paces to the right and left of the grand colonnade, begin two other rows of columns, whose capitals imitate the sprout of the truncated lotus. the diameter of the columns is five feet, their height thirty, and the intercolumuiation eight. This colonnade intersects, at right angles, that of the lotus columns: in the middle is an interval which served as an avenue to the palace, whose gate appears in front. It has been walled up by the Christians, who formed a niche in it, which contains their altar. They have clothed it with plaster, and adorned it with the pictures of their saints in fresco. The portico served as their church, and the avenue as the grand nave. This gate led to an apartment forty feet square, whose ceiling is supported by four columns. At the extremity of the palace, without mentioning the other apartments which compose it, there is a sanctuary, surrounded by an interval of six feet, which may be supposed to have been the chapel of the palace. The pictures that embellish it are very highly finished.
The general plan of this edifice affords every reason to conjecture that it was composed of about sixty buildings.
To give a minute description of the colossal ruins of ancient Thebes, as they exist at Luxor and Karnac, would require a volume; and we know no means of tarry-at-home travellers receiving adequate gratification, but by surveying some of the smaller antiquities of Egypt exhibited in the British Museum. Prodigious as some of those antiquities are, they will yet convey but an imperfect idea of the enormous masses which the Egyptians erected, forming palaces where the grossest impurities were practised, and temples whose pavements were dyed with the blood of human sacrifices; on account of which, the prophets denounced the Divine vengeance; and, as a lesson to wicked nations, Almighty God executed his righteous indignation upon the nation and their glory!
CAUSES OF DISEASE.
DAILY observation demonstrates that the human structure, even in its most perfect formation, is liable to lesions of organization, and derangement of function, producing that state of the system, in which its usual actions or perceptions are either interrupted or attended with pain: this state is called disease. Every animal carries within itself the germ of its own destruc tion, or, in other words, it is formed for a limited existence. Many diseases, therefore, arise spontaneously, or without any assignable external cause; but many more are produced by causes, over which we have some control; and perhaps the chief source of the physical ills to which we are liable, is the deviation we make from the simplicity of nature. The injurious influence that domestication has upon the health of the lower animals, is very strikingly apparent; and in proportion as their subjugation is more complete, and their manner of life differs more widely from that which is natural to them, so are their diseases more numerous and severe. The diseases of our more valuable domestic animals, are sufficiently numerous and important to employ a particular class of men, and the horse alone has professional assistance appropriated to him. Men of education and talent have devoted themselves to the investigation of the diseases of this noble and useful creature. The poor little canary
birds, confined in their wiry prisons, are very liable to disease, more especially inflammation of the bowels, asthma, epilepsy, and soreness of the bill. No animal deviates so far from the simplicity of nature in its habits, as man: none is placed under the influence of so many circumstances calculated to act injuriously upon the frame. His morbid affections are hence abundant and diversified, as may be seen by referring to the different nosological arrangements: those long catalogues of diseases afford strong evidence, that man has not carefully followed that way of life which has been marked out for him by nature. The crowded state of the inhabitants of large cities, the injurious effect of an atmosphere loaded with impurities, sedentary occupations, various unwholesome avocations, intemperance in food, stimulating drinks, high-seasoned and indigestible viands, and these taken hastily in the short intervals allowed by the hurry and turmoil of business, the constant inordinate activity of the great cerebral circulation, kept up by the double impulse of luxurious habits, and high mental exertions, the violent passions by which we are agitated and enervated, the various disappointments and vexations to which all are liable, reacting upon and disturbing the whole frame, the delicacy and sensibility to external influences caused by heated rooms, too warm clothing, and other indulgences, are all contrary to the voice of nature, and they produce those morbid conditions of the system which a more simple and uniform mode of living would prevent. Our associates of the animal kingdom do not escape the influence of such causes; the mountain shepherd and his dog are equally hardy, and form an instructive contrast between a delicate lady and her lap-dog-the extreme point of degeneracy and imbecility of which each race is susceptible. In the early ages of society, man enjoyed long life, his manner of living was simple, his food, habitation, and pursuits, were all calculated to fortify the body, and no anxious cares disturbed his mind.—Curtis's Essay on the Deuf and Dumb.
WATCH AND PRAY.
O watch and pray; thou canst not tell
Frail child of dust, O watch and pray.
O hear this counsel, and obey,
Price and ambition; watch and pray.
Go to the tombs, and ask the dead,
From their dark chambers :—watch and pray.
EASTER. APRIL 7. The w rd Easter occurs once in the Scriptures, Acts xii, 4, where it means Passover, referring not to the fact or the time of the resurrection of Christ, but to the national Hebrew festival of that name. Easter is a term applied in English to the season in which the resurrection of our blessed Saviour is commemorated but this word has been adopted from the Saxon goddess EOSTRE, whose idolatrous and impure festival was held in April.
The Greeks call this festival Pasga, and the Latins Pascha, from the Hebrew word which signifies a passage ór passover.
There is no precept or example in the Scriptures for the religious observance of this season; yet from a very early period the day of the Redeemer's glorious resurrection has been religiously observed by Christians. But one of the most unhappy controversies which ever existed among the professed followers of Christ, arose in the second century concerning the proper time of keeping this festival. The Asiatic churches kept their feast upon the very same day on which the Jews observed their Passover, and others on the first Sunday after the first full moon in the new year.
Mr. Milner, in his valuable " Church History," remarks: "The controversy respecting the proper time of the observation of Easter, which had been amicably adjusted between Polycarp of Smyrna and Anicetus of Rome, who had agreed to differ, was unhappily revived towards the close of this (the second) century. Synods were held concerning it; and a uniformity was attempted in vain throughout the church. Victor of Rome, with much arrogance and temerity, as if he had felt the very soul of the future papacy formed in himself, inveighed against the Asiatic churches, and pronounced them excommunicated persons. Irenæus, bishop of Lyons, rebuked the uncharitable spirit of Victor, reminded him of the union between Polycarp and his predecessor Anicetus, notwithstanding their difference of sentiment and practice in this point, and pressed the strong obligation of Christians to love and unity, though they might differ in small matters."
This controversy was determined in the council of Nice, called by order of Constantine the Great, A.D. 325, when it was ordained, that the commemoration of this blessed event should be kept on one and the same day, which should always be Sunday, in all Christian churches in the world. It ought however to be observed, that neither the council of Nice, nor any other council, has the least authority to make decrees or ecclesiastical laws for all Christians. The Holy Scriptures alone are the only authority in directing the faith, the practice, and the religious ordinances of believers on the Lord Jesus Christ.
But though the Christian churches, in the early ages after the apostles, differed as to the time, yet they all agreed in showing particular respect to this festival. On this day prisoners and slaves were liberated, and a generous provision was made for the poor. The eve, or vigil, of this festival was celebrated in some places with more than ordinary pomp, which continued till midnight; as it was a tradition of the church that our Saviour rose a little after midnight, but in the East, the vigil lasted till cock-crowing.
The manner in which Easter is celebrated in Roman Catholic countries is truly shocking, and one of the principal causes of hardening the Jews in their infidelity and hatred of the name of Jesus of Nazareth. But it is also worth while to consider how this ever-memorable event is commemorated in enlightened Protestant Britain. Let each one of our readers inquire, whether he is prepared in the true spirit of grateful devo
tion?"Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you, who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time." 1 Pet. i, 3-5.
MEDITATION ON THE FULNESS OF SALVATION. THE following reflections were written in consequence of hearing a long dry sermon on the merit of good works, and Christ being willing at last to make up any short-coming on the sinner's part. SERVA CHRISTI.
There is no such thing in the Bible as part of salvation, separable from an interest in all the blessings of the covenant of grace. He that breaks one command is guilty of all! How then can poor sinners, dead in trespasses and sins, work out a righteousness of their "There is none that doeth good, no, not one." (Psalm xiv, 3). In the sight of Jehovah all are dead in Adam; believers are justified only in Jesus, and they shall inherit everlasting life, as is most clearly expressed in the fifth chapter to the Romans. It is a free, full, and perfect salvation that Jesus purchased for his people on Calvary. Christ, the beloved of the Father, said, "If the Son shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed" (John viii, 36). "There is no putting forth of the finger" (Isaiah lviii, 9): there is no doing all we can to get to heaven by our works and merits, and so, if we come short in the measure of purity and holiness requisite for the celestial regions, Christ stepping forward and making up the deficiency! No: He came on no such inean errand from His glory to dwell among condemned transgressors. He came to accomplish the honours of the perfect law of God, "He came to seek and to save that which was lost" (Luke xix, 10). A beautiful illustration of this is Zaccheus meeting Emmanuel (Luke xix), with his roll of good works and diadem of merits. Zaccheus was little of stature; and being impelled by curiosity, and by the imparted grace of the good Spirit, he ascended the sycamore tree Jesus then called him by name, and said, he would abide that day at his house, which displeased some of his self-righteous followers so much, that they murmured that he should be the guest of a sinner. But Jesus declared that he was a son of Abraham according to the promise, "For Abraham believed in the Lord, and he counted it to him for righteousness." (Gen. xv, 6.) In this righteousness Zaccheus was a son of Abraham; not for "giving half of his goods to the poor, or restoring four-fold if he had taken any thing from any man by wrong accusation :' no, these were no pleas with the great Law-fulfiller and blessed Redeemer. His glory He will not give to another (Isa. xlii, 8; xlviii, 11). He is Lord of all, "his work is perfect,' ," and "of his fulness have all believers received, and grace for grace" (John i, 16): one grace to help another, so as to live to the promise of the glory of his grace, wherein He hath made us accepted" (Eph. i, 6), and presents us blameless before the throne of His Father and our Father, the Eternal God.
Virtue required in Nobility.- Nobility is a splendid gem, and adds an ornament to him who wears it; but if it be not set in the purest gold of moral goodness, it only serves to make more apparent the vices of its
Letters to a Mother, upon Education.
General Principles of Intellectual Education.
MAY I offer you this Letter as incidental to the general course, as being very strongly though collaterally only connected with it. I shall endeavour to state what appear to me to be the principal rules which ought to be kept in view in the intellectual education of your child, not merely from the period at which he learns to read, but from the very first dawn of his intellect, and in reference to every subject in which he may be instructed.
The first rule is, that the degree of maturity which his faculties have attained ought perpetually to be kept in view, in regard to the information which is administered to him. That maturity is to be estimated, not so much by the strength of the faculty in question, but by the degree of information which he has acquired by that faculty. The accession of knowledge to the mind of an infant must resemble the addition of links to a chain; of whatever length it may be, the succeeding link must be fastened on to and make part of the preceding. So must any new idea communicated to a pupil of any age, if he is to be expected to retain it. That is, there must be some of the new ideas of the same nature with those of which he is already possessed, and the accession must consist of the gradual extension of them into others which are different.
Secondly, Every new subject which is taught him ought to be exhibited to his mind from its very first principles, and these should be represented in the simplest and most intelligible form, and comprehensively. The teacher should also be careful, that out of the plenitude of his own information, he may not convey defective apprehensions. Every teacher is in danger of taking for granted that the pupil is acquainted with some things, in consequence of their being obvious to himself. This ought to be dreaded the more as the teacher is himself expert and experienced. To this cause may perhaps be ascribed the frequent obscurity of books on the elements of any science, and which render the assistance of a tutor indispensable. In arranging the principles of a new science, the instructor, whether orally or by writing, ought to take for granted the absolute ignorance of the pupil. This may sometimes be thrown away; but neither the pupil nor the instructor will have much cause to regret: it is an error on the right side. In the case of oral instruction, the pupil ought to be instructed to demur the instant he does not understand. He should be cautiously warned never to seem to comprehend when he does not, through a shame of owning his want of comprehension, or out of a baneful affectation of seeming to have a very rapid comprehension. On the other hand, the instructor should never feel or affect notions of impatience with those who comprehend slowly. The instant he has lost his patience, he throws away the capability of being useful. It should also be considered, that a comparatively slow perception is usually found united with tenacious retention.
Thirdly, A yet more important rule should be, that nothing should be taught a child, except in such terms and in such modes as he can understand. The instant he ceases to comprehend, he ceases to learn. From that moment the time of both parties is thrown away. They may go on indeed, but the fabric must be taken down and rebuilt at no distant period. The utmost pains should be taken to meet the apprehension of a child. His eye, the tone of his voice, should be perpetually regarded, to see whether he really does compre
hend. On the part of the instructor, all means should be adopted for this desirable purpose. Your language ought ever to be as simple and as precise as a demonstration in Euclid. All the pains you can adopt to be perspicuous, simple, intelligible, and unequivocal, will be amply repaid. Such pains will reward even yourself, by the increased clearness of your own perceptions. Your own perceptions of the topic in question, and those of your child, ought to be like the rivulet which flows from a spring, in which you can most clearly see every grain of sand, every pebble, that lies at the bottom.
In this consists the great utility of grammar, logic, &c. to train the mind to the habit of taking clear perceptions, and of communicating them to others. For the want of this habit, what an obscurity there is attendant on the professed instruction and the professed knowledge of multitudes! It originates in the habit, on the part of the instructor, of not forming precise and accurate perceptions himself. Whatever we can perceive clearly and comprehensively, we can express in like manner. Take care of the perceptions, and then leave the language in which you convey them to take care of itself. The expression of ideas is to the perception, what the hands of a clock are to the procedure of the inward works. Indeed, the more we keep our mental view on the perception, the more correct and even elegant will be our expressions. The instant we become conscious that we are speaking or writing, our style ceases to be fluent and happy.
Whenever then you find that you are not most clearly perceiving the object which you are describing, or teaching, scrupulously pause till you can recover your perceptions. If you cannot do so, tell your child so at once. The first opportunity, get complete information, tell him when you have done so, and then communicate it.
The want of these principles and this procedure, from instructors of every order, has done infinite mischief in every department of knowledge. Would that it had always been followed, even in the pulpit! Who can tell how much the inefficiency of the ministry is to be attributed to this cause? He who does not clearly understand, can never clearly teach. Be he an instructor of whatever rank, he may fill his time up, and communicate the accustomed dose of weariness to his auditors, but no more.
Let your entire intellectual procedure to your infant resemble that beautiful comparison of real knowledge in the Scriptures, namely, light. Let your own mind be full of light, and the addition to your infant's ideas be ever that of light to light.
It should also be kept in mind, that the instant dark and dubious ideas are attempted to be communicated, his mind will become uncertain, will be discouraged, and gain a settled idea of the difficulty of obtaining knowledge, an impression fatal to acquisition. He will be reduced to the liability of seeking satisfaction in the pleasures of the senses, which he will soon experience are certain in their sensations. He then totters on the verge of degradation. In every new department there will always be ideas which will require contemplation till the mind perceives them; till, if I may so speak, the eye of the mind accommodates itself to the perception of them. But if they be really presented in a perceptible form, the mind will infallibly, and without much difficulty, apprehend them. The greatest difficulty attending upon the learning of most sciences is derived, not so much from the nature of those sciences themselves, as from the improper modes in which they are taught.
I am, dear Madam, yours, &c.