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every single particular, to the most trying ordeal, by which it is possible to test the genuineness of any professed history of the past. We have minutely compared its incidental allusions, those unimportant accessories, in which all feigned narratives invariably betray themselves by blunders and anachronisms, with the yet existing monuments of the time and country of which it purports to relate the history. How the Mosaic narrative comes forth from the torture-chamber, wherein this crucial question has been administered to it - whether its genuineness or imposture have appeared in the process, we, without one impulse of fear, without one shadow of mistrust, leave to the judgment of the reader the most hostile to its authenticity, that may cast his eye upon our pages.
These contemporary monuments have corrected the mistakes and misapprehensions of twenty-five hundred years. They have restored to significance and perfect harmony with the context, words which, in the days of Ptolemy Epiphanes and the Septuagint, were mere cabalisms. Their import had been long forgotten, and they were only to be represented in the new version by the transcription of their Hebrew characters into Greek.
We have repeatedly remarked, in the course of our investigation, that not one word in the Bible was written in vain : we have now another and similar proposition to lay down. Not one event in Providence has happened in vain. It has not been in vain that the monuments of Ancient Egypt have remained until now deeply hidden beneath the sand of the desert. Neither has their present disclosure taken place for no higher purpose than to supply materials for huge unreadable volumes, in which the writers may display their learning, their philosophic rejection of the Bible, and their implicit faith in Eratosthenes, Censorinus, and other ancient Greek authorities. That it is for the illustration of the Bible that these materials for the history of Ancient Egypt have been kept by a miracle in Providence, we have long felt convinced. Our purpose in the present work is to demonstrate the truth of this our conviction.
"And there was no bread in all the land ; for the famine was very sore, so that the land of Egypt and the land of Canaan fainted by reason of the famine. And Joseph gathered up all the money that was found in the land of Egypt, and in the land of Canaan, for the corn which they bought: and Joseph brought the money into Pharaoh's house. And when the money failed in the land of Egypt and in the land of Canaan, all the Egyptians came unto Joseph and said, Give us bread, for why should we die before thee, for the money faileth ? And Joseph said, Give me your cattle; and I will give you for your cattle, if money fail. And they brought their cattle unto Joseph : and Joseph gave them bread for horses, for flocks, for herds, and for asses : and he brought them through that year with [the] bread she gave them]." Gen. xlvii. 13—17.
This was but the third year of the famine. At its conclusion, the whole of the moveable property of Egypt and Canaan is Pharaoh's. The rings of silver and gold are in his treasure-houses. The cattle of all kinds feed on the grassy plains of the Delta, under the supervision of the king's servants.
The enumeration of the several kinds of cattle mentioned here, is illustrated by the tombs of the princes of Egypt of the times of Joseph. Cattle of several sorts formed an important part of their wealth. They are represented on the walls of their tombs with minute accuracy : so much so, that each separate head has the appearance of a portrait. It would convey a wrong impression were we to assume that the flocks and herds of Egypt were like those that now graze the pastures of England. They consisted of collections of many different species of bovine and caprine animals. The princes were in the habit of going forth to the mountains on hunting expeditions, at the head of long trains of attendants, for the purpose of taking them alive in toils. It is not until the times immediately preceding those of Joseph that they are ever represented hunting with deadly weapons. The experiment which ultimately issued in the present breeds of tame cattle was then in progress. Gazelles, antelopes, and wild goats of various species constituted the flocks of the princes of Egypt. Zebus, yaks, brahmin-bulls, as well as the wild cattle, both of Western Asia and
Eastern Africa, were their herds. Even in the days of Joseph's immediate predecessors, a highly-valued possession of one of the princes of the twelfth dynasty, Nahrai,* consisted in a tame breed of the oryx, the gnou, or some other species of the colossal antelopes that to this day bound in herds over the vast plains of interior Africa.
The concentration of the cattle of vast districts in one place, and under one hand and management, which is implied by the inspired narrative, would have the effect of greatly settling the tame breeds which were afterwards in use. This effect certainly followed : for of the cattle depicted in the tombs of Egypt, which belong to later times than those of Joseph, the flocks are all goats, and the herds are all oxen, of three or four breeds only.
The ass was always the beast of burden of Egypt, from the very earliest period of which we have any monumental record. He still strays wild in herds, and browses the oases of the desert tracts that hem in Egypt on all sides. The Zebra, the Twaggai, and the other striped asses of interior Africa do not appear ever to have reached Egypt. Had they been seen there, doubtless they would have been highly valued. The horse was unknown in Egypt in the times
* His tomb is at Beni-hassan, in Middle Egypt.