Imágenes de páginas

§ 278. The Bow, ARRow, AND Quiver. 341

§ 277. Of Javelins.

Javelins appear to have been of two kinds. In explanation of this remark, it may be observed,

I. That the javelin, which bears in Hebrew the name of nor, is almost always mentioned in connexion with the weapons of lightarmed troops, Ps. 57:4. 1 Sam. 13:22. 18; 10. 21:8. 22:6. 2 Sam. 23: 18. In 1 Chron. 12:34, it is indeed joined with Hex the larger sort of buckler, but it is evident from 1 Sam. 18; 11. 19: 10. 20:33. that this weapon, whatever might have been its shape, and although it may have sometimes been used as a spear, was, nevertheless, thrown, and is, accordingly, to be ranked in the class of missile weapons. That nor was a weapon of this kind accounts for the fact, that the epithet sp2 is joined to it, as follows, ven nor.

II. That the word jin” likewise means a jarelin may be learnt from Job 39:23. where it is joined with nor. Compare Job 41: 29. Josh. 8: 18, 26. 1 Sam. 17:6. The difference between these two sorts of javelins cannot now be known any further than this, viz. that jino, as may be inferred with some probability from Joshua 8:18, 26. and 1 Sam. 17:6. was the largest in size of the tWO.

§ 278. Of the Bow, ARRow, AND Quiver.

The bow, ninop, nup, and arrows, boxn, yri, are weapons of a very ancient origin, Gen. 48:22. 49: 24. comp. Gen. 9:14, 15. Archers, nor on, nop ozz, were very numerous among the Hebrews, especially in the tribes of Benjamin and Ephraim, Ps. 78; 9. 1 Chron. 8:40. 2 Chron. 14:8. 17: 17. Weapons of this description belonged properly to the light-armed troops, who are represented, as having been furnished with the sword, the buckler, and the bow, 2 Chron. 17: 17. The Persian archers, who, in other passages, are mentioned with applause, are spoken of likewise with commendation in profane history, Is. 13: 18. Jer. 49:35. 50:9, 14, 29, 42.

The bows were generally made of wood ; in a very few instances, they were made of brass, Ps. 18; 34. Job 20: 24. Those 342 - § 279. The sling.

of wood, however, were so strong, that the soldiers sometimes challenged one another to bend their bow. In bending the bow, one end of it was pressed upon the ground by the foot, the other end was pressed down by the left hand and the weight of the body, and the string was adjusted by the right. This accounts for the use of the word Toyo, (which literally means to tread upon,) in reference to the bending of the bow, 1 Chron. 5: 18. 8:40. 2 Chron. 14:8. Is. 5: 28. 21: 15. Jer. 46: 9. A bow, which was too slack, and which, in consequence of it, injured the person, who aimed it, was denominated a deceitful bow, no nop, Ps. 78: 57. Hos. 7: 16. The bow, in order to prevent its being injured, was carried in a case, made for that purpose. The strings for bows were made of thongs of leather, of horse hair, and of the sinews of oxen, Iliad IV. 116, 124. The soldiers carried the bow on the left arm or shoulder. ARRows, port, were at first made of a reed ; subsequently they were made from a light sort of wood, and were surmounted with an iron point. Whether they were sometimes dipt in poison or not, cannot, at any rate, be determined with much certainty from Job 6:4. and Deut. 32: 24. They were more commonly, by means of the shrub called the broom, Erin, discharged from the bow, while on fire, Ps. 120: 4. Job 30:4. It is in reference to this fact, that arrows are sometimes used tropically for lightnings, Deut. 32:23, 42. Ps. 7: 13. Zech. 9: 14. Quivers, or, were pyramidal in point of form. They were suspended upon the back; so that the soldier, by extending his right hand over his shoulders, could draw out the arrows, the small part of the quiver being downward.

[ocr errors]

The sling, as there is ample reason for believing, may be justly reckoned among the most ancient instruments of warfare, Job 41: 28. The persons, who used slings, E*::p, **p, were enrolled among the light-armed troops. Those slingers were accounted worthy of especial credit, who, like the Benjamites, were capable in slinging of using equally the right hand or the left, Judg. 20:6. 1 Chron. 12; 2. There was need of almost con§ 281. BATTERING RAMs. 343

stant practice, in order to secure to one, any tolerable degree of success, in hitting the mark, 1 Sam. 17:49. Slingers were of great advantage in an army, Diodorus Sic. Lib. XV. 85.

§ 280. Of ENGINEs used in WAR.

ENGINEs of war, norio, nozori. Engines for warlike operations, which were the “inventions of cunning men,” were erected by king Uzziah upon the towers and the angles of the walls. They were, consequently, quite ancient in their origin. Of these engines, there were two kinds, viz. cATAPULTs and BALLISTA E. *

The catapults were immense bows, which were bent by means of a machine, and which threw with great force large arrows, javelins, and even beams of wood. The ballistae, on the other hand, may be denominated large slings, which were discharged likewise by machines, and threw stones and balls of lead.

[ocr errors]

BATTERING RAMs are first mentioned by Ezekiel, as being an instrument of war, in use among the Chaldeans, Ezek. 4: 1, 2. 21: 22. 26: 9. But as they were certainly not invented by them, they were of a still earlier date. They were long and stout beams, commonly of oak, the ends of which were brass, shaped like the head of a ram. They were at first carried on the arms of the soldiers, and impelled against the wall. But subsequently, they were suspended by means of chains in equilibrium, and in that way, by the aid of the soldiers, were driven against it. While this operation was going on, for the purpose of breaking through the wall, the soldiers, who were immediately interested in it, were protected from the missiles of the enemy by a roof erected over them, which was covered with raw skins.

–----- - - - - -am-mm

344 § 283. CHARiots of wah.

§ 282. Respecting the CAvALRY.

We have spoken of the cavalry elsewhere, but we have a few remarks more to make here. The Maccabean princes saw, that cavalry were not profitable in mountainous places, and bestowed their chief attention upon the infantry, by means of which they achieved their victories. The Caramanians used asses in war, which gained some notoriety by terrifying the horses in the army of Cyrus, and putting them to flight, Is. 21: 7. comp. Xenophon's Cyropaedia, VII. 1. 22.

ELEPHANTs are first mentioned, as being used in war, in the history of Alexander's expeditions, but afterwards they were so frequently and efficiently employed, as to give them much celebrity. Machines, constructed like a tower, were placed upon the backs of these animals, from which sometimes no less than thirty two soldiers fought. The foot-soldiers were stationed round, and defended the elephant. The one, who guided him, was called the Indian, as at this day, 1 Macc. 6: 37. The elephants themselves also fought, at the same time, against the enemy. To excite them to use their proboscis the more efficiently, the soldiers gave them an intoxicating drink of wine and myrrh, 1 Macc. 6:34.

§ 283. Of Chariots of War, asn, no.

The annoyance, which the Hebrews most dreaded, when they met an enemy in war, was that of chariots. Mention is made of chariots, as far back as any thing is said of cavalry, Exod. 14:6. 14: 23–28; but they could not be used, except on the plain country, Deut. 20:1. Josh. 17: 16–18. Judg. 1: 19. 2: 7. 4: 3, 7. After the time of Solomon, the Hebrews always kept such chariots, and placed great reliance upon them, 2 Chron. 1: 14. 1 K. 10; 26. 22:32, 35. 2 K. 2: 12. Chariots, owing to their efficiency as instruments of war, are used tropically for protection and defence of the highest kind, 2 K. 2: 12. 13: 14.

Chariots of war, like all others in the ancient times, of which we are speaking, were supported on two wheels only, and where generally drawn by two horses, though sometimes by three or four, abreast. The combatant stood upright, upon the chariot.

§ 285. gymnastic sports. 345

Xenophon mentions chariots, invented by Cyrus, from each one of which, twenty men could fight. They resembled towers, Cyropaed. IV. 1. 16, 17. The end of the pole of the chariot, and the end of the axles were armed with iron scythes, which were driven with vast force among the enemy, and made great slaughter.

§ 284. Sports AND Exercises preparatory to WAR.

In the earliest periods of the history of our race, every soldier was indebted to himself, to his own exertions, as a separate and independent individual, for whatever skill he might possess in the management of weapons of war. For the acquisition of skill, nevertheless, even in those early days, in the use of weapons, the hunting of wild beasts, which was then practised, afforded a favourable opportunity. But as hunting itself implied some previous skill in the use of arms, it was necessary, that there should be some preparatory practice. Consult Gen. 14: 14. 32: 6. Job 16: 12, 14. Judg. 20: 16. 1 Chron. 12:1. 2 Sam. 2: 19. 1 Sam. 17:50.

That such a preparatory exercise obtained among the Hebrews is evident from a vast number of passages. It is no other, than this exercise, which is expresssed by the phrase nor;” to to learn war. Those who have been trained up in this way to the exercise of arms, were denominated nor: "Tao instructed in war, 1 Sam. 20:20, 35–40. 2 Sam. 1:22. 23: 35. Is. 2:4. Mic. 4: 3.

§ 285. GYMNAstic Sports.

The GYMNAstic sports were not properly military exercises, but since they had a tendency to prepare youth for skill in arms and war, and were of a military nature in their commencement, we shall treat of them in this place.

The sports and exercises of the gymnasia had their origin among the Greeks, but were afterwards introduced among other nations. In the time of Antiochus Epiphanes, they became favourites with many of the Jews, 1 Macc. 1: 14, 15. 2 Macc. 4: 12 –14. and were finally introduced into Judea by Herod.

The Gym NAsia, youvaoua, were large edifices, exhibiting in their construction an oblong square, and surrounded externally

« AnteriorContinuar »