Obrazy na stronie

would probably effect this change, in the same manner as for a short time become choked with sand, and perhaps the juice of pomegranate grains expressed into it. This lost. This place is on the great road along which the Isis scarcely consistent with what he says before, that he had raelites would naturally march; it is within a practicable asked them whether they had any means for effecting such distance from Marah, their last station; and it unites the a change, and they answered in the negative. We have indispensable advantages of water, and an ample plain, no hesitation in rejecting his supposition; because it would suitable for the encampment of so large a host as that of not have been necessary for the Lord to have shewn Moses the Israelites—which are not to be found any where else so common a plant; nor, being so common, is it likely that in the neighbourhood. In fact, the identity of Wady Moses, who had lived so long in the desert, would be un Gharendel with Elim may now be taken as a settled point acquainted with the curative property of the berries, if they of this route. It is true that Dr. Shaw, and others before had any such property at all; but, above all, the Israelites him, but hardly any since, place Elim at a place near Tor, were at Marah in April, when the gharkad could have where there are a number of palm-trees around a well had no berries, as, according to Burckhardt's own ac which the people of Tor call Hummam Musa,' the bath of count, the fruit does not attain maturity till the middle of Moses, and which they hold in veneration on the ground summer.

that the tent of Moses was pitched Dear it. But this is ob27. 'They came to Elim, where were twelve wells and three viously connected with the untenable position that the score and ten palm-trees.'—This station is usually identified passage of the Red Sea took place at Tor; for the spot with the Wady Gharendel, about eight or nine miles would be forty or fifty miles out of the way of a party south by east of Hawarah. This is the largest of the wadys coming from the north to Mount Sinai, by a route never on the west side of the peninsula. It is not like those taken by any persons or caravans visiting the mountain. which the Israelites had previously passed, a mere de - Palm-trees.'—The Date-palm (Phænir dactylifera) pression in the plain, but a valley enclosed by high' hills. is one of the noblest trees that adorn the solitary waste, It is about a mile broad, and stretches far away to the and the most useful that man has converted to the purposes north-east. So agreeable is a little verdure to the eyes of nutriment and comfort. In the forest the eye recognises after the dreary scenes which have been passed, that the the lofty palm, while the remainder of the vegetable creWady Gharendel is usually described in somewhat glowing ation lose their individuality in the confusion of varied colours, as highly fertile, and filled with palm-trees, shrubs, tints and forms. The presence of the palm is an unerring and verdure. But, in truth, the valley has no soil but sign of water ; hence the weary Israelites found water where drifting sand, and the vegetation is very scanty, ninety-nine they found palm-trees. The cut we have given represents parts in a hundred of the entire surface being perfectly a specimen of the palm-tree which Laborde found, growing bare. Tamarisks, and a few other shrubs on which camels wild in one of the valleys of Sinai. With reference to it, browze, are scattered thinly over the surface, and a few he observes :—We always represent the trunk of a palmacacias may be seen. Eight or ten stunted palm-trees are tree shooting up to some distance, and then suffering its scattered along the road for a mile or more, and are of curved branches to spring forth, from which gracefully interest in connection with the intimation in the text of the | hang the dates, as brilliant as corals; never reflecting that presence of twelve palm-trees at Elim. Of the twelve all this elegance is the effect of art. The opposite wood-cut wells, one only remains, of which the water is hardly exhibits a palm-tree, such as it may be found in a wild drinkable. The others have been probably filled with state, growing larger from year to year, making for itself drift sand, and might easily be restored. In all the foun a rampart of its decayed branches, and rising, as it were, tains of the desert, wells are of little depth, and if neglected perpetually from its own ruins.'

[graphic][ocr errors][subsumed][merged small]
[graphic][subsumed][ocr errors][merged small]

CHAPTER XVI. 1 The Israelites come to Sin. 2 They murmer for

want of bread. 4 God promiseth them bread from heaven. 11 Quails are sent, 14 and manna. 16 The ordering of manna. 25 It was not to be found on

the sabbath. 32 An omer of it is preserved. And they took their journey from Elim, and all the congregation of the children of Israel came unto the wilderness of Sin, which is between Elim and Sinai, on the fifteenth day of the second month after their departing out of the land of Egypt.

2 And the whole congregation of the children of Israel murmured against Moses and Aaron in the wilderness :

3 And the children of Israel said unto them, Would to God we had died by the hand of the Lord in the land of Egypt, when we sat by the flesh pots, and when we did eat bread to the full ; for ye have brought us forth into this wilderness, to kill this whole assembly with hunger.

4 | Then said the LORD unto Moses, Behold, I will rain bread from heaveu for you ;

and the people shall go out and gather 'a i cording to his eating, an omer "for every man, certain rate every day, that I may prove according to the number of your persons ; them, whether they will walk in my law, or take ye every man for them which are in his no.

tents. 5 And it shall come to pass, that on the | 17 And the children of Israel did so, and sixth day they shall prepare that which they gathered, some more, some less. bring in; and it shall be twice as much as 18 And when they did mete it with an they gather daily.

omer, 'he that gathered much had nothing 6 And Moses and Aaron said unto all the over, and he that gathered little had no lack; children of Israel, At even, then ye shall know they gathered every man according to his that the LORD hath brought you out from the eating. land of Egypt:

19 And Moses said, Let no man leave of 7 And in the morning, then ye shall see it till the morning. the glory of the LORD; for that he heareth 20 Notwithstanding they hearkened not your murmurings against the LORD: and unto Moses ; but some of them left of it until what are we, that ye murmur against us? the morning, and it bred worms, and stank:

8 And Moses said, This shail be, when the and Moses was wroth with them. LORD shall give you in the evening flesh to In the evening whesh he ang iland where

| 21 And they gathered it every morning, eat, and in the morning bread to the full ; for every man according to his eating: and when that the LORD heareth your murmurings which | the sun waxed hot, it melted. ye murmur against him ; and what are we ? | 22 | And it came to pass, that on the sixth your murmurings are not against us, but day they gathered twice as much bread, two against the LORD.

omers for one man : and all the rulers of the 9 And Moses spake unto Aaron, Say congregation came and told Moses. unto all the congregation of the children of 23 And he said unto them, This is that Israel, Come near before the LORD : for he | which the LORD hath said, To morrow is the hath heard your murmurings.

rest of the holy sabbath unto the LORD : bake 10 And it came to pass, as Aaron spake that which ye will bake to day, and seethe unto the whole congregation of the children of that ye will seethe; and that which remainIsrael, that they looked toward the wilderness, eth over lay up for you to be kept until the and, behold, the glory of the LORD 'appeared morning. in the cloud.

24 And they laid it up till the morning, as 11 | And the LORD spake unto Moses, Moses bade: 'and it did not stink, neither saying,

was there any worm therein. °12 I have heard the murmurings of the 25 And Moses said, Eat that to day; for children of Israel: speak unto them, saying, to day is a sabbath unto the LORD: to day At even ye shall eat Aesh, and in the morning ye shall not find it in the field. ye shall be filled with bread; and ye shall 26 Six days ye shall gather it; but on the know that I am the LORD your God.

seventh day, which is the sabbath, in it there 13 | And it came to pass, that at even 'the shall be none. quails came up, and covered the camp: and 27 | And it came to pass, that there went in the morning the dew lay round about the out some of the people on the seventh day for host.

to gather, and they found none. 14 And when the dew that lay was gone | 28 And the LORD said unto Moses, How up, behold, upon the face of the wilderness long refuse ye to keep my commandments and there lay 'a small round thing, as small as the my laws ? hoar frost on the ground.

29 See, for that the LORD hath given you 15 And when the children of Israel saw it, the sabbath, therefore he giveth you on the they said one to another, 'It is manna : for sixth day the bread of two days; abide ye they wist not what it was. And Moses said every man in his place, let no man go out of unto them, “This is the bread which the LORD his place on the seventh day. hath given you to eat.

1 30 So the people rested on the seventh 16 1 This is the thing which the LORD day. hath commanded, Gather of it every man ac- ! 31 And the house of Israel called the

4 Num. 11. 7. Psal. 78. 24. Wisd. 16, 20.

1 Heb. by the poll, or, hered.

| Heb. the portion of a day in his day. 8 Chap 13, 11.

^ Naim. 11. 31. 5 Or, What is this i or, It is a portion.

& John 6, 31. I Cor. 10. 3. 8 Heb, souls.

$ 2 Cor. 8. 15.

name thereof Manna : and it was like cori- and lay it up before the LORD, to be kept for ander seed, white ; and the taste of it was your generations. like wafers made with honey.

34 As the LORD commanded Moses, so 32 | And Moses said, This is the thing Aaron laid it up before the Testimony, to be which the LORD commandeth, Fill an omer of kept. it to be kept for your generations; that they 35 And the children of Israel did eat manna may see the bread wherewith I have fed you | forty years,''until they came to a land inin the wilderness, when I brought you forth habited ; they did eat manna, until they came from the land of Egypt.

unto the borders of the land of Canaan. 33 And Moses said unto Aaron, Take a 36 Now an omer is the tenth part of an pot, and put an omer full of manna therein, 1 ephah.

10 Josh. 5. 12. Nehem. 9. 15.

Verse 1. • Came unto the wilderness of Sin, which is be | rect and contradictory; for how could the Hebrews be tween Elim and Sinai.' – The object of the present narrative ignorant what it was, if they at once declared it to be is manifestly historical, not topographical, and hence manna? Josephus says expressly, that man is a particle of several stations are omitted at which nothing remarkable interrogation; and so the Septuagint understands it. Hence occurred. In Numb. xxxiii. the names of the stations we may consistently and properly render the clause, They omitted here are preserved. From v. 10 it appears that said one to another, What is it? (man-hu?] for they knew between Elim and the wilderness of Sin, there was an | not what it was.' encampment by the sea.' In passing southward from Gharendel, the Israelites soon ceased to have the sea open on their right hand, as they had to pass inside a mountain called Jebel Hummam, which is lofty and precipitous, extending in several peaks along the shore, and, without doubt, the 'encampment by the sea' was where they again came out upon the sea, by the present wady Taiyibeh, and encamped at its mouth. The fact that they encamped by the sea at all is important, as shewing that they did not pursue their course to Sinai by the upper road, which travellers now usually take; but advanced along the shore into the great plain which, beginning near el Murkhah, extends with greater or less breadth almost to the extremity of the peninsula. This plain, in its broadest part, north of Tor, is called el-Kaa. This desert plain is doubtless the wilderness of Sin, which forms the next station mentioned in the text. Had they not come down into this plain, they would not, after passing Jebel Hummam, have turned down to the sea, but would have gone off to the central region, in quite an opposite direction. From this plain—the desert of Sin—they could enter the mountains at various points, either by the nearer routes through Wady Shellal and Mukutteh, or perhaps by the mouth of the Wady Feiran itself. The reader, on consulting a good map, will be aware that

QUAIL the two former wadys lead into Wady Feiran, and the only question seems to be, whether they thus entered that wady, We shall abstain from perplexing our readers with a or through its own proper mouth further down. The statement of the various attempts which have been made question is immaterial, as both routes concur in favour of a to identify this manpa with the natural condensed juices or passage through Wady Feiran to the mountains. In Num. | gums from certain shrubs or trees, to which the name has xxxiii. 12, 13, two stations, intermediate between the wil

been applied: for the manna of Scripture has been sought derness of Sin and Rephidim, are given, namely Dophkah not merely in the produce of one gum-exuding plant, and Alush; but they are mentioned so indefinitely, that no but of many. The strongest claim to identity applies to hope remains of their ever being identified.

the substance, still called by the Arabs mann, which is pro

duced in the peninsula of Sinai ; but we have already 13. • Quails:-150 selav. Quails (Coturnir dactyliso stated, that Arah identifications, whether of sites or pronans) are remarkable for their migratory habits. These ducts, or any thing else, are not of the least value, unless birds remove in prodigious flocks from place to place, supported by other and strong corroborations. We take having previously remained solitary during the period of this, however, because if it be not the manna of Scripture, incubation. They are often seen crossing the Mediter no other natural product can pretend to the distinction. rapean in their passage to and from Africa, and it is said The best and most complete account of it is given by Burckthat on some occasions more than a hundred thousand have hardt. Speaking of the Wady es-Sheikh, to the north of been killed about Naples at one time. There cau be no Mount Serbal, he says, ' In many parts it was thickly overdoubt that this bird of passage of the Levant is the selav of grown with the tamarisk or tarfa; it is the only valley in the sacred writer; and though quails might settle in count the peninsula where this tree grows, at present, in any less swarms around the tents of the Israelites without a great quantity, though some small bushes are here and miracle, yet nothing but the fiat of the Almighty could have there met with in other parts. It is from the tarfa that sent them thither at an appointed time.

the manna is obtained ; and it is very strange that the fact 15. They said one to another, It is manna ; for they wist should have remained unknown in Europe till M. Seetzen not what it was.'—This passage in our-translation is incor- | mentioned it in a brief notice of his tour to Sinai, published in the Mines de l'Orient. This substance is called by the 60 dollars the noja, equal to nearly three pounds sterling Arabs mann, and accurately resembles the description of per lb. the manna given in Scripture. In the month of June it If, for a moment, we allow this to be the manna of Scrip drops from the thorns of the tamarisk upon the fallen twigs, ture, let us see to what extent a miracle is still required to leaves and thorns, which always cover the ground beneath account for the phenomena recorded there. This mann is the tree in the natural state: the manna is collected before only yielded six weeks in the year; but the manna of sunrise, when it is coagulated, but it dissolves as soon as Scripture was supplied at all times of the year during forty the sun shines upon it. The Arabs clean away the leaves, years, and a double supply came regularly every Friday, dirt, etc. which adhere to it, boil it, strain it through a to compensate for its being intermitted on Saturday. It feli coarse piece of cloth, and put it into leathern skins; in this also in the Hebrew encampment, wherever it happened to way they preserve it till the following year, and use it, as | be, in all the country between Sinai and Palestine, The they do honey, to pour over their unleavened bread, or to | mann of Sinai may be kept from one year to another ; but dip their bread into. I could not learn that they ever the manna, if kept till the day after that on which it was made it into cakes or loaves. The manna is found only in gathered, bred maggots, became noisome, and was unfit for


use-except once a week, when its freshness was preserved for two days; and except also in the instance of the vessel full of it, which was directed to be preserved as a standing memorial of this wonderful provision. The mann is found, under the shrubs which produce it, in adhesive particles, whereas the manna was showered down around the Hebrew encampment. When, therefore, so many miraculous circumstances must in any case be allowed—if the identity of the mann and manna be conceded, we really do not see how the believer can do other than consider the supply as altogether miraculous; or how the unbeliever can do better than reject the account altogether. There is no middle path. In attempting to account for the matter on natural principles, so much that is miraculous must be admitted, that it cannot be worth while to contend about the remainder.

As to the substance itself, the identity, or even resemblance, does not seem to us so well established as Burckhardt conceives. Besides the differences, involving a miracle, to which we have alluded, its appearance and colour do not correspond with the description of manna, as . a small round thing, as small as the hoarfrost.... like coriander seed, and its colour like a pearl.' Besides, the

mann dissolves in heat, after it has been kept for a long TAMARISK (Tamarix Gallica).

time in a solid state ; but the manna was found in a solid

state ; and although it dissolved in the sun if not gathered years when copious rains have fallen; sometimes it is not early in the morning, yet if collected it might be pounded produced at all. I saw none of it among the Arabs, but I into meal, and baked as bread. Burckhardts manna could obtained a piece of last year's produce at the convent; not be powdered into meal, and would melt in the attempt where, having been kept in the cool shade and moderate temperature of that place, it had become quite solid, and formed a small cake: it became soft when kept some time in the hand, if placed in the sun for five minutes, but when restored to a cool place it became solid again in a quarter of an hour. In the season at which the Arabs gather it, it never acquires that degree of hardness which will allow of its being pounded, as the Israelites are said to have done, in Num. xi. 8. Its colour is dirty yellow, and the piece which I saw was still mixed with bits of tamarisk leaves; its taste is agreeable, somewhat aromatic, and as sweet as honey. If eaten in any considerable quantity, it is said to be slightly purgative. The quantity of manna collected at present, even in seasons when the most copious rains fall, is very trifling, perhaps not amounting to more than five or six hundred pounds. It is entirely consumed among the Bedouins, who consider it the greatest dainty which their country affords. The harvest is usually in June, and lasts six weeks; sometimes it begins in July (Tour in the Peninsula of Mount Sinai.) Ehrenberg has examined and described this shrub, which he calls Tamarir mannifera, but which seems to be only a variety of T. Gallica. The gummy exudation he considers to result from the puncture of an insect which he found upon it, and which he calls Coccus manniparus ; and others have been of the same opinion. Both the plant and the insect are figured in his great work, Symbolæ Physicæ. Lieutenant Wellstead confirms Burckhardt's statement; but adds, that the whole product is not consumed in the Peninsula-a part being taken to Cairo, and a considerable portion sold to the Sinai monks, who retail it (as manna?) to the Russian pilgrims. He was assured by the Bedouins that the produce of a fruitful season did not exceed 150 noja (about 700 pounds), and that it was usually disposed of at the rate of

CORIANDER (Coriandrum sativum).

« PoprzedniaDalej »