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Syriac and Arabic versions of the Chronicles ; and in the valuable printed edition of the Septuagint by Aldus, in 1918. He might have added the excellent impression at Frankfurt, fol. 1697.
That singular criterion, which gives a son the rank of seniority to a father ;--a seniority of two years, and recorded in an ancient history ;-has every reason to be considered as a writ of error, and the title thence accruing as a counterfeit. The scribes, from ignorance, make a false report. The historian's notations accord with nature. For a father, dying at 40, might leave a fon 22 years old. This youngest son, however, had elder brothers; and, to the conviction of all impartial judges, it may be certified that the age of Jehoram was 32; when he began his joint reign, and 36 at his father's death. His age was consequently 44, Ahaziah being born in his 22d year, and his elder sons, by several mothers, between the 16th and 22d. As in genealogy the Archbishop's knowledge is superficial, so his decisions are incongruous often with his premises. Yet even he saw the propriety of admitting, that the 32d of Jehosam's age ought to be reckoned from his advancement to the throne in his father's life-time.
This Ahaziah, having reigned one year together with his father, which as complete makes the 8th and Jast of his administration ; and one full year more after his decease, was, in the 24th of his own life, cut off by the sword of Jehu. As the seventh in succession from David exclusively, he ought, on the authority of the royal calendar in Judah, to be included in this series. R 2
But he is omitted in the list of Christ's ancestors by the evangelist Matthew; and as not now extant in this division, he is here in like manner left out, though, for reasons to be mentioned, it may be requisite to replace him with others; both to fill up the triple series, and to reconcile the Old and New Testament registers.
His mother Athalia, having flain all the seed royab in Judah, except the infant Joalh, invaded the throne, and fell, after, an ufurpation of six years, a victim to the resentments of the princes and people of the land, and to the justice of an avenging Providence.
7. Jehoashi or Joals. On the express authority of notations in the facred records, has his claim to the throne been evinced. Were his lineage, as an immediate son of Abaziah, less cestain, the descent of Jesus Christ from David would be more doubtful. But the direct evidences of this fact, produced in the foregoing pages, shew, that idle conjectures and chimerical notions merit no regard. This infant, (rescued from his unnatural grandmother by the humanity of his father's fifler seholheba, the wife of Jehoiadah the high prieft, who, in virtue of his office, presided with supreme authority over the temple, where the young prince with his nurse had been concealed fix years), was thence conducted to the throne, at the age of seven. full years. He reigned 40, and consequently died at the age of 47. Ulher, misled by his erroneous combination of original numbers, mutilates this reign by reducing it to 39. ".m
8. Amaziah. At the age of 25 he began his reign of 29 years, and died at the age of 54*. .
9. Araziah, Azariah, or Uzziah. * All the people of the land took Azariah, who was 16 years old, and made him king in the Aead of Amaziah his father t.” The parallel texts agreeing, like two living witnesses, in the article of time, supersede farther evidence. Yet notations apparently discordant create hesitation, whether Azariah were 16 years old at the decease of his father, or at some fubfequent period ? That text which connects the first of Uzziah's reign with the 16th of his life, refers both to the 27th of Jeroboam II. king of Ifrael. This middle term in reckoning is appofite and decisive. .
“ In the 38th year of Azariah king of Judah did Zachariah the son of Jeroboam reign in Samaria fix months I. These fix months ended in the 39th of the Same reign, A. M. 3237. Hence fubtract 39, the remainder 3198 denotes the laft year of Amaziah, and the 14th of Jeroboam. But the 27th of Jeroboam was the 16th of Araziah. His government therefore had a double commencement ;-a minority of 12 years begun in the 15th of Jeroboam ;- and a personal reign in the
* 2 Chron. xxv. 1.
27th of the same reign. The 38th, 39th, 50th, and 52d, are all computed from the death of Amaziah, as if no minority had taken place. In the same manner 12 years of anarchy in Samaria, from the death of Jeroe boam II. to the death of Zachariah, are in like manner omitted. By two notations however are they retained, or rather restored ;-Amaziah lived 15 years after the death of Joalh king of Israel * ; and Uzziah was 16 years old when he began his personal administration..
. ?o: Jotham. • ONE rule for computing the lives and reigns of kings has been premised, and often exemplified. In a conjunct reign the age of the junior monarch is computed from the partnership in authority, but his fole reign from the demise of his predecessor, or it includes the last incomplete year of the former.
UZZIAH, it is well known, had been smitten by the hand of Heaven with an incurable leprosy ; unto the day of his death he dwelt in a several house, secluded from society; and Jotham his son was over the king's house, judging the people of the land t. These circumstances indicate continuance of time. The space of the regency is not defined, but a term agreeable to the course of nature may be assumed. Suppose therefore Jotham began his vicarious reign at the age of 25, he was therefore born in the 25th of his father's life,
• 2 Kings, xiv. 17. This character of time is, on account of its importance, repeated 2 Chron. xxv. 25. , t 2 Chron. xxvi. 21,
und began his own sole reign at the age of 31 ; add 16 for his reign, he died at the age of 47. No remonAtrance occurs, and from nature, chronology, or history, emergent difficulties in genealogy are anticipated. .
His age when he began to reign, is in two parallel texts said to have been 20*. His father, as the num. bers have been transmitted, reigned 16 and lived 36 years. Ahaz was, by this reckoning, born in the 16th of Jotham. This arrangement, apposite and conciliatory as it may appear, is inadequate; for the very next step in computation infers a contradiction.
12. Hezekiah, At his accession he was 25 years old +. But as his Father's life and reign did not exceed 36 , the fon was born when the father's age was but 11. Whilton pronounces this notation one of the greatest difficulties in all the Bible. On the authority of Tremellius, Usher has recourse to a retrograde computation, (his usual expedient for solving emergent perplexities), by supposing the sacred historian meant, that Ahaz was 20 years old, not when he himself, but when his father Jotham began to reign. If so, Ahaz was born in the sih year of Jotham’s age; or by the correction above proposed, in she uth. Both these critics are extremely unfortunate.
* 2 Kings, xvi. 2. and 2 Chron. xxviii. 1. . + 2 Chron. xxix. 1.
- $ 2 Chron. xxvii. s.