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fortunate as to see what they see, your charming skin would strike you with


The harmony of a concert, to which you listen with delight, must have on certam classes of minute animals the effect of terrible thunder; and perhaps it kills them. We see, touch, hear, feel things, only in the way in which they ought to be seen, touched, heard, or felt by ourselves.

Had Cæsar been born in the time of Scipio Africanus, he would not have subjugated the Roman commonwealth; nor would Mahomet, could he rise again at the present day, be more than sheriff of Mecca. But if Archimedes and Virgil were restored, one would still be the best mathematician, the other the best poet of his country.




All is in due proportion. The laws of optics, which show you an object in the water where it is not, and break a If any one be desirous of obtaining a right line, are in entire accordance with thorough knowledge of the antiquities of those which make the sun appear to you Arabia, it may be presumed that he will with a diameter of two feet, although it is gain no more information than about those a million times larger than the earth. To of Auvergne and Poitou. It is, however, see it in its true dimensions, would re- certain, that the Arabs were of some conquire an eye collecting his rays at an sequence long before Mahomet. The angle as great as his disk, which is im-Jews themselves say that Moses married possible. Our senses, then, assist much an Arabian woman; and his father-in-law more than they deceive us. Jethro seems to have been a man of great good sense.

Motion, time, hardness, softness, dimensions, distance, approximation, strength, weakness, appearances, of what ever kind,-all is relative. And who has created these relations?


ALL great successes, of whatever kind, are founded upon things done or said d-propos.

Mecca is considered, and not without reason, as one of the most ancient cities in the world. It is, indeed, a proof of its antiquity, that nothing but superstition could occasion the building of a town on such a spot; for it is in a sandy desert, where the water is brackish, so that the people die of hunger and thirst. The country a few miles to the east is the most delightful upon earth, the best watered and the most fertile. There the Arabs should have built, and not at Mecca. But it was enough for some charlatan, some false prophet, to give out his reveries, to make of Mecca a sacred spot and the resort of neighbouring nations. Thus it was that the temple of Jupiter Ammon was built in the midst of sands.

Arnold of Brescia, John Huss, and Jerome of Prague, did not come quite -propos: the people were not then sufficiently enlighted; the invention of printing had not then laid the abuses complained of before the eyes of every one. But when men began to read-when the populace, who were solicitous to escape purgatory, but at the same time wished not to pay too dear for indulgences, began to open their eyes, the re-west, from the desert of Jerusalem to formers of the sixteenth century came Aden or Eden, about the fiftieth degree quite a-propos, and succeeded. of north latitude. It is an immense

It has been elsewhere observed, that Cromwell under Elizabeth or Charles the Second, or Cardinal De Retz when Louis XIV. governed by himself, would have been very ordinary persons.

Arabia extends from north-east to south

country, about three times as large as Germany. It is very likely that its deserts of sand were brought thither by the waters of the ocean, and that its marine gulphs

were once fertile lands.

The belief in this nation's antiquity is favoured by the circumstance that no historian speaks of its having been subjugated. It was not subdued even by Alexander, nor by any king of Syria, nor by the Romans. The Arabs, on the contrary, subjugated a hundred nations, from the Indus to the Garonne; and, having afterwards lost their conquests, they retired into their own country, and did not mix with any other people.

Having never been subject to nor mixed with other nations, it is more than probable that they have preserved their manners and their language. Indeed, Arabic is, in some sense, the mother-tongue of all Asia as far as the Indus; or rather the prevailing tongue, for mother-tongues have never existed. Their genius has never changed. They still compose their Nights' Entertainments, as they did when they imagined one Bac or Bacchus, who passed through the Red Sea with three millions of men, women, and children; who stopped the sun and moon, and made streams of wine issue forth with a blow of his rod, which, when he chose, he changed into a serpent.

A nation so isolated, and whose blood remains unmixed, cannot change its character. The Arabs of the desert have always been given to robbery, and those inhabiting the towns been fond of fables, poetry, and astronomy.

It is said, in the historical preface to the Koran, that when any one of their tribes had a good poet, the other tribes never failed to send deputies to that one on which God had vouchsafed to bestow so great a gift.

The tribes assembled every year, by representatives, in an open place named Ocad, where verses were recited, nearly in the same way as is now done at Rome in the garden of the academy of the Arcadii; and this custom continued until the time of Mahomet. In his time, each one posted his verses on the door of the temple of Mecca.

Labid, son of Rabia, was regarded as the Homer of Mecca; but, having seen

the second chapter of the Koran, which Mahomet had posted, he fell on his knees before him, and said, "O Mohammed, son of Abdallah, son of Motalib, son of Achem, thou art a greater poet than Ithou art doubtless the prophet of God."

The Arabs of Maden, Naïd, and Sanaa, were no less generous than those of the desert were addicted to plunder. Among them, one friend was dishonoured if he I had refused his assistance to another.

In their collection of verses, entitled Tograïd, it is related that, "one day, in the temple of Mecca, three Arabs were disputing on generosity and friendship, and could not agree as to which, among those who then set the greatest examples of these virtues, deserved the preference. Some were for Abdallah, son of Giafar, uncle to Mahomet; others for Kaïs, son of Saad; and others for Arabad, of the tribe of As. After a long dispute, they agreed to send a friend of Abdallah to him, a friend of Kais to Kaïs, and a friend of Arabad to Arabad, to try them all three, and to come and make their report to the assembly.

"Then the friend of Abdallah went and said to him, 'Son of the uncle of Mahomet, I am on a journey, and am destitute of everything.' Abdallah was mounted on his camel loaded with gold and silk; he dismounted with all speed, gave him his camel, and returned home on foot.



"The second went and made application to his friend Kaïs, son of Saad. was still asleep, and one of the domestics asked the traveller what he wanted. The traveller answered, that he was the friend of Kaïs, and needed his assistance. domestic said to him, I will not wake my master; but here are seven thousand pieces of gold, which are all that we at present have in the house. Take also a camel from the stable, and a slave; these will, I think, be sufficient for you until you reach your own house.' When Kais awoke, he chid the domestic for not having given more.

The third repaired to his friend Arabad, of the tribe of As. Arabad was blind,

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teuch; it was a Chaldean word;-a fresh proof that the Arabian author was in the neighbourhood of Chaldea.

It has been thought that he might be a Jew, because the Hebrew translator has put Jehovah instead of El, or Bel, or Sadaï. But what man of the least information does not know that the word Jehovah was common to the Phoenicians, the Syrians, the Egyptians, and every people of the neighbouring countries?

A yet stronger proof-one to which there is no reply is the knowledge of astronomy which appears in the book of Job. Mention is here made of the constellations which we call Arcturus, Orion, the Pleiades, and even of those of "the chambers of the south." Now, the Hebrews had no knowledge of the sphere; they had not even a term to express astronomy; but the Arabs, like the Chaldeans, have always been famed for their skill in this science.

It does, then, seem to be thoroughly proved, that the book of Job cannot have been written by a Jew, and that it was anterior to all the Jewish books. Philo and Josephus were too prudent to count it among those of the Hebrew canon. is incontestibly an Arabian parable or allegory.


It is clear that the Arabs at least possessed noble and exalted ideas. Those who are most conversant with the oriental languages, think that the book of Job, which is of the highest antiquity, was composed by an Arab of Idumæa. The most clear and indubitable proof is, that the Hebrew translator has left in his translation more than a hundred Arabic words, This is not all: we derive from it which, apparently, he did not understand. some knowledge of the customs of the Job, the hero of the piece, could not be ancient world, and especially of Arabia. a Hebrew; for he says, in the forty-Here we read of trading with the Indies; second chapter, that having been restored a commerce which the Arabs have in all to his former circumstances, he divided ages carried on, but which the Jews never his possessions equally among his sons even heard of. and daughters, which is directly contrary to the Hebrew law.

It is most likely that, if this book had been composed after the period at which we place Moses, the author-who speaks of so many things, and is not sparing of examples would have mentioned some one of the astonishing prodigies worked by Moses, which were, doubtless, known to all the nations of Asia.

In the very first chapter, Satan appears before God, and asks permission to tempt Job. Satan was unknown in the Pente

Here, too, we see that the art of writing was in great cultivation, and that they already made great books.

It cannot be denied that the commentator Calmet, profound as he is, violates all the rules of logic in pretending that Job announces the immortality of the soul and the resurrection of the body, when he says:

"For I know that my Redeemer liveth. And though after my skin-worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God. But ye should say, Why per

secute we him?-seeing the root of the bius, and repeated word for word by matter is found in me. Be ye afraid of George Syncellus. From these fragthe sword for wrath bringeth the punishments we find, that the Orientals of the ment of the sword, that ye may know borders of the Euxine, in ancient times, there is a judgment.' made Armenia the abode of their Gods. Can anything be understood by those In this they were imitated by the Greeks, words, other than his hope of being cured? who placed their deities on Mount OlymThe immortality of the soul, and the re- pus. Men have always confounded surrection of the body at the last day, are human with divine things. Princes built truths so indubitably announced in the{their citadels upon mountains; therefore New Testament, and so clearly proved by they were also made the dwelling place the Fathers and the Councils, that thereof the Gods, and became sacred. The is no need to attribute the first knowledge summit of Mount Ararat is concealed by of them to an Arab. These great myste-mists; therefore the Gods hid themselves ries are not explained in any passage of in those mists, sometimes vouchsafing to the Hebrew Pentateuch; how then can appear to mortals in fine weather. they be explained in a single verse of Job, and that in so obscure a manner? Calmet has no better reason for seeing in the words of Job the immortality of the soul, and the general resurrection, than he would have for discovering a disgrace-himful disease in the malady with which he was afflicted. Neither physics nor logic take the part of this commentator.

A God of that country, believed to have been Saturn, appeared one day to Xixuter, tenth king of Chaldea,-according to the computation of Africanus, Abydenus, and Apollodorus, and said to

"On the fifteenth day of the month Oësi, mankind shall be destroyed by a deluge. Shut up close all your writings in Sipara, the city of the sun, that the memory of things may not be lost. Build a vessel; enter it with your relatives and friends; take with you birds and beasts; stock it with provisions: and, when you are asked, "Whither are you going in

As for this allegorical book of Job:it being manifestly Arabian, we are at liberty to say that it has neither justness, method, nor precision. Yet it is perhaps the most ancient book that has been written, and the most valuable monument that has been found on this side the Eu-that vessel?' answer, "To the Gods, to phrates.


beg their favour for mankind."

Xixuter built his vessel, which was two stadii wide, and five long; that is, A MOUNTAIN of Armenia, on which the its width was two hundred and fifty geoArk rested. The question has long been metrical paces, and its length six hundred agitated, whether the Deluge was univer- and twenty-five. This ship, which was sal—whether it inundated the whole earth to go upon the Black Sea, was a slow without exception, or only the portion of sailer. The flood came. When it had the earth which was then known. Those ceased, Xixuter let some of his birds fly who have thought that it extended only out; but, finding nothing to eat, they reto the tribes then existing, have founded turned to the vessel. A few days aftertheir opinion on the inutility of flooding wards, he again set some of his birds at unpeopled lands, which reason seems liberty, and they returned with mud in very plausible. As for us, we abide by their claws. At last they went, and rethe Scripture text, without pretending to turned no more. Xixuter did likewise: explain it. But we shall take greater he quitted his ship, which had perched liberty with Berosus, an ancient Chaldean { upon a mountain of Armenia, and he was writer, of whom there are fragments pre-seen no more: the Gods took him away. served by Abydenus, quoted by Euse- There is probably something historic in

this fable. The Euxine overflowed its thenes, Archimedes, have said, had they banks, and inundated some portions of witnessed the subtle cavillings which have territory; and the King of Chaldea hast-cost so much blood? ened to repair the damage. We have in Rabelais tales no less ridiculous, funded on some small portion of truth. The ancient historians are, for the most part, serious Rabelais.

As for Mount Ararat, it has been asserted, that it was one of the mountains of Phrygia, and that it was called by a nime answering that of ark, because it was enclosed by three rivers.

Arius has, even at this day, the honour of being regarded as the inventor of his opinion, as Calvin is considered to have been the founder of Calvinism. The pride in being the head of a sect, is the second of this world's vanities; for that of conquest is said to be the first. However, it is certain that neither Arius nor Calvin is entitled to the melancholy glory of invention. The quarrel about the There are thirty opinions respecting Trinity existed long before Arius took this mountain. How shall we distinguish part in it, in the disputatious town of the true one? That which the monks Alexandria, where it had been beyond now call Ararat, was, they say, one of the the power of Euclid to make men think limits of the terrestrial paradise,-a para-calmly and justly. There never was a dise of which we find but few traces. It is a collection of rocks and precipices, covered with eternal snows. Tournefort went thither by order of Louis XIV. to seek for plants. He says that the whole neighbourhood is horrible, and the mountain itself still more so, that he found snow four feet thick, and quite chrystallised; and that there are perpendicular precipices on every side.

people more frivolous than the Alexandrians; in this respect, they far exceeded even the Parisians.

There must already have been warm disputes about the Trinity; since the patriarch, who composed the Alexandrian Chronicle, preserved at Oxford, assures us, that the party embraced by Arius was supported by two thousand priests.

We will here for the reader's conve

small book which every one may not have at hand

Here is an incomprehensible question, which, for more than sixteen hundred years, has furnished exercise for curiosity for sophistic subtlety-for animosityfor the spirit of cabal-for the fury of

The Dutch travaller, John Struys, pre-nience, give what is said of Arius in a tends that he went thither also. He tells us that he ascended to the very top, to cure a hermit afflicted with a rupture. "His hermitage," says he, "was so distant from the earth, that we did not reach it until the close of the seventh day, though each day we went five leagues." If, m this journey, he was constantly as-dominion-for the rage of persecutioncending, this Mount Ararat must be thirty-five leagues high. In the time of the Giants' war, a few Ararats piled one upon another would have made the ascent to the moon quite easy. John Struys, moreover, assures us, that the hermit whom he cured, presented him with a cross, made of the wood of Noah's ark. Tournefort had not this advantage.


THE great theological disputes, for twelve hundred years, were all Greek. What would Homer, Sophocles, Demos

for blind and sanguinary fanaticism-for barbarous credulity-and which has produced more horrors than the ambition of princes, which ambition has occasioned not a few. Is Jesus the Word? If he be the Word, did he emanate from God in Time or before Time? If he emanated from God, is he co-eternal and consubstantial with him, or is he of a similar substance? Is he distinct from him, or is he not? Is he made or begotten? Can he beget in his turn? Has he paternity? or productive virtue without paternity? Is the Holy Ghost made?

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