Obrazy na stronie

the history of Egypt, that the connection between the two has been always acknowledged, both by Jews and Christians. Josephus the Jew has preserved to us portions of the lists and histories of the Greeks to which we have already alluded, in his works on the Old Testament; the remaining fragments of these lost works we owe altogether to the scriptural comments and illustrations of Eusebius, Syncellus and other early Christian writers. The same connection and necessity were perceived by the Christian scholars of the more modern era of the Reformation : and many learned and laborious efforts were embodied in ponderous folios, all directed to the illustration of Scripture from what was then known regarding Egypt. These all failed, for lack of knowledge of the subject, and of the means of acquiring it. That they were made, however, sufficiently proves the existence in their day, of the conviction we have explained. These details will suffice to show, that when we claim Egypt and her ancient history, as especially a Bible subject, and illustrative of, and illustrated by, the Bible far more than any other book, we are making no fanatical or bigotted appropriation, but are merely stating a fact which has at all times been acknowledged, and to the consciousness of which we owe the preservation of the Greek illustrative records by the early Jewish and Christian writers.

It is the object of the present work to show that the recovery of the mode of reading the inscriptions which cover the monuments of Egypt now in existence, has by no means disappointed these expectations; and that the principal purpose which the facts thereby elicited will subserve, is that of scriptural illustration.

The notices of Egypt in the Bible are to the full as remarkable, and as distinct from those which allude to any other ancient nation, as the natural and historical phenomena we have already explained. The name of Egypt in the Old Testament, was that of the third son of the patriarch Ham, so that the fact that Egypt was first colonized by him, rests on exactly the same evidence as that Assyria was colonized by Ashur, or Canaan by the patriarch's first-born. The names of Ashur and Canaan have been long forgotten ; but the name of Egypt in the east, to this day, is that of Mizraim, the third son of Ham. The same fact, moreover, though not formally stated, flows as a clear inevitable inference from the tenor of the inspired narrative. In the tenth chapter of Genesis, the name of Mizraim occurs in the enumeration of the sons of Ham, verses 6, 13. In the eleventh chapter is the narrative of the dispersion of Babel. In the twelfth chapter, the event that immediately follows the call of Abram, is his emigration into the land of Miz

raim; and that at this remote epoch, this epithet had the same meaning as at all subsequent times, is demonstrated by the context, where the king of Mizraim is called Pharaoh; which, we need scarcely explain, is a title common to all the kings of Egypt and peculiar to them. Verses 10, 15.

This is by no means the only inference regarding Egypt that flows from this portion of the inspired narrative. Egypt was a monarchy settled upon a basis very similar to that which obtained long afterwards at the time of the call of Abram. Pharaoh was surrounded by his princes when the patriarch sojourned in Egypt, and therefore ruled as a king over a considerable territory. This was not the case with any other ancient monarchy at this remote period. We find in the course of the same narrative, that Shinar, afterwards Babylon, Elam, afterwards Persia, (Gen. xiv. 1.) Damascus, afterwards Syria, (xv. 2.) were then small independent cities, each under its Melek,* or petty king.

All these specialties regarding Egypt in its connexion with the Old Testament, are equally to be noted in the subsequent periods of that history. The interpretation of the hieroglyphics has greatly increased both the number and importance of them. It has been a slow and tedious process, but many interesting, and, to the verification of the Bible, highly important results, have already been realized. It is to these results and not to the process, it is to the general reader and not to the student of hieroglyphics that we exclusively address ourselves.

* The word melek abbreviated mek is the name of the hereditary ruler of a town or village, to this day, in East Africa.

We hope to show, first of all, that the anticipations so long entertained by believers in Revelation, of ample light upon its concise narrative from the records of Ancient Egypt, have been abundantly verified; and then that from this new, and by many altogether unsuspected quarter, we have large additional evidence that the Bible is true.

The two heads under which the illustrations we have to submit in the present introductory chapter arrange themselves, are THE FIRST COLONIZATION OF EGYPT, and THE STATE OF EGYPT AT THE TIME OF THE VISIT OF ABRAM.

§ 1. THE FIRST COLONIZATION OF EGYPT. The Scripture narrative has already presented to us Mizraim the son of Ham, with his posterity, as a clan or sept in the tribe of his father on the plains of Shinar, before the dispersion ; and after that event, as having given his name to the valley of the Nile, in which his descendants had settled. It clearly follows that, on its occurrence, the clan of Mizraim emigrated to Egypt. Now the only direct route from Shinar to Egypt is across the isthmus of Suez; and it is perfectly obvious in itself, as well as a fact with which all history makes us familiar, that large bodies of men emigrating under circumstances of misfortune, invariably plant themselves on the first convenient and safe locality at which they arrive, and afterwards extend gradually from thence in other directions. Under this view, the geographical position of the remains of Ancient Egypt, relatively to their antiquity, becomes a question of the deepest and most vital importance to the inquiry before us. The present author was the first to point out the facts that bear upon this question many years ago ; and subsequent researches in Egypt have now established them beyond all possibility of contradiction. The remains of the most ancient kings all lie immediately opposite to the isthmus and to the ancient city of Heliopolis, at the crown of the Delta, just at the spot where the weary immigrant, after crossing the sands of the desert, and being entangled in the swamps of the Delta, would first find rest for the sole of his foot. Not only is this fact remarkably in accordance with the Scripture narratives : it is equally in harmony with the Greek tradition regarding the origin of the Egyptian monarchy, according to which the first king of Egypt was the first to cross the river and found the city of Memphis. The ruins of Memphis are part of the locality we have indicated. That this is

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