Obrazy na stronie

means were admitted to flow into the Arabian Gulf, it would, in the course of 20,000 years, convey into it such a quantity of earth as would raise its bed to the level of the surrounding coast. I am of opinion, he subjoins, that this might take place even within 10,000 years; why then might not a bay still more spacious than this be choked up with mud, in the time which passed before our age, by a stream so great and powerful as the Nile ! (2, 11.)—The men of science who accompanied the French expedition into Egypt undertook to measure the depth of alluvial matter which has been actually deposited by the river. By sinking pits at different intervals, both on the banks of the current and on the outer edge of the stratum, they ascertained satisfactorily, first, that the surface of the soil declines from the margin of the stream towards the foot of the hills; secondly, that the thickness of the deposite is generally about ten feet near the river, and decreases gradually as it recedes from it; and, thirdly, that beneath the mud there is a bed of sand analogous to the substance which has at all times been brought down by the flood of the Nile. This convex form assumed by the surface of the valley is not peculiar to Egypt, being common to the banks of all great rivers, where the quantity of soil transported by the current is greater than that which is washed down by rain from the neighbouring mountains. The plains which skirt the Mississippi and the Ganges present in many parts an example of the same phenomenon.—An attempt has likewise been made to ascertain the rate of the annual deposition of alluvial substance, and thereby to measure the elevation which has been conferred upon the valley of Egypt by the action of its river. But on no point are travellers less agreed than in regard to the change of level and the increase of land on the seacoast. Dr. Shaw and M. Savary take their stand on the one side, and are resolutely opposed by Bruce and Wolney on the other. Herodotus informs us, that in the reign of Moeris, if the Nile rose to the height of eight cubits, all the lands of Egypt were susficiently watered; but that in his own time—not quite 900 years afterward—the country was not covered with less than fifteen or sixteen cubits of water. The addition of soil, therefore, was equal to seven cubits at the least, or 126 inches in the course of 900 years. “But at present,” says Dr. Shaw, “the river must rise to the height of twenty cubits—and it usually rises to 24 cubits—before the whole country is overflowed. Since the time, therefore, of Herodotus, Egypt has gained new soil to the depth of 230 inches. And if we look back from the reign of Moeris to the time of the Deluge, and reckon that interval by the same proportion, we shall find that the whole perpendicular accession of the soil, from the Deluge to A.D. 1721, must be 500 inches; that is, the land of Egypt has gained 41 feet 8 inches of soil in 4072 years. Thus, in process of time, the country may be raised to such a height that the river will not be able to overflow its banks; and Egypt, consequently, from being the most fertile, will, for want of the annual inundation, become one of the most barren parts of the universe.” (Shaw's Travels, vol. 2, p. 235.)—We shall see presently that this fear on the part of the learned traveller is entirely without foundation. Were it possible to determine the mean rate of accumulation, a species of chronometer would be thereby obtained for measuring the lapse of time which has passed since any monument, or other work of art in the neighbourhood of the river, was originally founded. In applying the principle now stated, it is not necessary to assume anything more than that the building in question was not placed by its architect under the level of the river at its ordinary inundations, a postulatum which, in regard to palaces, temples, and statues, will be most readily granted. Proceeding on this ground, the French philosophers hazarded a conjecture respecting a number of dates,

of which the following are some of the most remarkable: 1. The depth of the soil round the colossal statue of Memnon, at Thebes, gives only 0.106 of a mêtre (less than four inches) as the rate of accumulation in a century, while the mean of several observations made in the valley of Lower Egypt gives 0.126 of a mêtre, or rather more than four inches. But the basis of the statue of Memnon was certainly raised above the level of the inundation by being placed on an artificial mound; and excavations made near it show that the original height of that was six mètres (19.686 feet) above the level of the soil. A similar result is obtained from examining the foundations of the palace at Luxor. Taking, therefore, 0.126 of a mêtre, the mean secular augmentation of the soil, as a divisor, the quotient, 4760, gives the number of years which have elapsed since the foundation of Thebes was laid. This date, which, of course, can only be considered as a very imperfect approximation to the truth, carries the origin of that celebrated metropolis as far back as 2960 years before Christ, and, consequently, 612 years before the Deluge, according to the reckoning of the modern Jews. But the numbers given there differ materially from those of the Samarian text and the Septuagint version; which, carrying the Deluge back to the year 3716 before Christ, make an interval of seven centuries and a half between the flood and the building of Thebes. Though no distinct account of the age of that city is to be found in the Greek historians, it is clear from Diodorus that they believed it to have been begun in a very remote period of antiquity. (Diod, Sic., 1, 15.)–2. The rubbish collected at the foot of the obelisk of Luxor indicates that it was erected fourteen hundred years before the Christian era.-3. The causeway which crosses the plain of Siout furnishes a similar ground for sup: posing that it must have been founded twelve hundred years anterior to the same epoch. —4. The pillar at Heliopolis, six miles from Cairo, appears, from evidence strictly analogous, to have been raised about the period just specified; but, as the waters drain off more slowly in the Delta than in Upper Egypt, the accumulation of alluvial soil is more rapid there than higher up the stream; the soundations, therefore, of ancient buildings in the former district will be at as great a depth below the surface as those of much greater antiquity are in the middle and upper provinces. But it is obvious that to form these calculations with such accuracy as would render them less liable to dispute, more time and observation would be requisite than could be given by the French in the short period during which they continued in undisturbed possession of Egypt. One general and important consequence, however, arising from their inquiries, can hardly be overlooked or denied; namely, that the dates thus obtained are as remote from the extravagant chronology of the ancient Egyptians, as they are consistent with the testimony of both sacred and profane history, with regard to the early civilization of that interesting country.—But, little or no reliance can be placed on such conclusions, because it is now manifestly impossible to ascertain, in the first instance, whether the measures referred to by the ancient historians were in all cases of the same standard; and, secondly, whether the deposition of soil in the Egyptian valley did not proceed more rapidly in early times than it does in our days, or even than it has done ever, since its effects first became an object of philosophical curiosity. That the level of the land has been raised, and its extent towards the sea greatly increased since the age of Herodotus, we might safely infer, as well from the great infusion of earthy matter which is held in suspension by the Nile when in a state of flood, as from the analogous operation of all large rivers, both in the old con: timents and in the new. There is, in truth, no good reason for questioning the fact mentioned by Dr. Shaw, that the mud of Ethiopia has been detected by soundings at the distance of not less than twenty leagues from the coast of the Delta. Nor yet is there any substantial ground for apprehending, with the author just named, that, in process of time, the whole country may be raised to such a height that the river will not he able to overflow its banks; and, consequently, that Egypt, from being the most fertile, will, for want of the annual inundation, become one of the most barren parts of the universe. “According to an approximate calculation,” observes Wilkinson, “the land about the first or lowest cataract has been raised nine feet in 1700 years, at Thebes about seven feet, and at Cairo about five feet ten inches; while at Rosetta and the mouths of the Nile, where the perpendicular thickness of the deposite is much less than in the valley of Central and Upper Egypt, owing to the great extent, east and west, over which the inundation spreads, the rise of the soil has been comparatively imperceptible.” As the bed of the Nile always keeps pace with the elevation of the soil, and the proportion of water brought down by the river continues to be the same, it follows that the Nile now overflows a greater extent of land, both east and west, than in former times; and that the superficies of cultivable land in the plains of Thebes and of Central Egypt continues to increase. All fears, therefore, about the stoppage of the overflowing of the Nile are unfounded. (Russell's Egypt, p. 37, seqq.— Encycl. Us. Knowl., vol. 16, p. 234.)

4. Change in the course of the Nile.

The Nile is said by Herodotus (2,99) to have flowed, previously to the time of Menes, on the side of Libya. This prince, by constructing a mound at the distance of 100 stadia from Memphis, towards the south, diverted its course. The ancient course is not unknown at present, and may be traced across the desert, passing west of the Natron Lakes. It is called by the Arabs Bahr-bcla-Maich, “The river without water,” and presents itself to the view in a valley which runs parallel to that containing the lakes just mentioned. In the sand with which its channel is everywhere covered, trunks of trees have been found in a state of complete petrisaction, and also the vertebral bone of a large fish. Jasper, quartz, and petrosilex have likewise been observed scattered over the surface. “That the Nile originally flowed through the valley of the Dry River,” observes Russell (Egypt, p. 102, seqq.), “is admitted by the most intelligent among modern travellers. M. Denon, for example, regards as proofs of this fact the physical conformation of the adjoining country ; the existence of the bed of a river extending to the sea, but now dry ; its depositions and incrustations; its extent; its bearing towards the north on a chain of hills which run east and west, and turn off towards the northwest, sloping down to follow the course of the valley of the dry channel, and likewise the Natron Lakes. And, more than all the other proofs, the form of the chain of mountains at the north of the Pyramid, which shuts the entrance of the valley, and appears to be cut perpendicularly, like almost all the mountains at the foot of which the Nile flows at the present day; all these offer to the view a channel left dry, and its several remains. (Denon, vol. 1, p. 163.) The opinion that the river of Egypt penetrated into the Libyan desert, even to the westward of Fayoum, is rendered probable by some observations recorded in the second volume of Belzoni's Researches. In his journey to the Oasis of Ammon, he reached, one evening, the Bahr-bela-Maich. , ‘This place,’ he remarks, “is singular, and deserves the attention of the geographer, as it is a dry river, and has all the appearance of water having been in it, the bank and bottom being quite full of stones and sand. There are several islands in the centre ; but the most remarkable circumstance is, that at a certain height upon the bank there

is a mark evidently as if the water had reached so high: the colour of the materials, also, above that mark, is much lighter than that of those below. And what would almost determine that there has been water here is, that the island has the same mark, and on the same level with that on the banks of the supposed river. I am at a loss to conjecture how the course of this river is so little known, as I only found it marked near the Natron Lakes, taking a direction of northwest and southeast, which does not agree with its course here, which is from north to south, as far as I could see from the summit of a high rock on the west side of it. The Arabs assured me that it ran a great ways in both directions, and that it is the same which passes near the Natron Lakes. If this be the case, it must pass right before the extremity of the lake Maeris, at the distance of two or three days’ journey in a western direction. This is the place where several petrified stumps of trees are found, and many pebbles, with moving or quick water inside.” (Belzoni, vol. 2, p. 183.) NINUs, I. son of Belus, and king of Assyria. His history is known to us merely through Ctesias, from whom Diodorus Siculus and Justin have copied. (Heyne, de Fontibus, Diod. Sic., p. liii., seqq., vol. 1, ed. Bip.) Ctesias and Julius Africanus make him to have ascended the throne 2048 B.C., and from the narrative of Diodorus he would appear to have been a warlike prince, who signalized himself by extensive conquests, reducing under his sway the Babylonians, Armenians, Medes, Bactrians, Indi, and, in a word, the whole of Upper and Lower Asia. Even Egypt felt his sway. In his expedition against the Bactrians he met with the famous Semiramis, with whom he united himself in marriage. After completing his conquests, Ninus, according to the Greek writers, erected for his capital the celebrated city of Nineveh (vid. Ninus II.-Compare, however, remarks under the article Assyria), and on his death was succeeded by Semiramis, who reared a tomb of vast dimensions over his grave.—Much of what is stated respecting this monarch is either purely fabulous, or else various legends respecting different conquerors are made to unite in one. He occupies the boundary between sable and history. (Ctes., ap. Diod Sic, 2, 1, seqq.— Ctes., Fragm., ed. Båhr, p. 389, seqq.)—II. The capital of the Assyrian Empire, called by the Greeks and Romans Ninus (Nivoc), but in Scripture Nineveh, and in the Septuagint version, Nuvevi or Nivews. . It was situate in the plain of Aturia, on the Tigris (Strabo, 737. —Herod., 1, 193.—Id., 2, 150.-Ptol., 6, 1), and not on the Euphrates, as Diodorus states on the authority of Ctesias. (Diod. Sic, 2, 3.) The Hebrew and Greek writers concur in describing Nineveh as a very large and populous city. , Jonah speaks of it as “an exceeding great city, of three days’ journey” (Jon. 3, 3), and states that there were more than 120,000 persons in it that knew not their right hand from their left (4, 11). Rosenmüller and other commentators suppose this to be a proverbial expression to denote children under the age of three or five years, and accordingly estimate the entire population at two millions; but the expression in Jonah is too vague to warrant us in making any such conclusion. Strabo says that it was larger than Babylon (Strab., 737); but if any dependance is to be placed on the account of Diodorus (2, 3), who states that it was 480 stadia in circumference, it must have been about the same size as Babylon. (Herod., 1, 178.) The walls of Nineveh are described by Diodorus as 100 feet high, and so broad that three chariots might be driven on them abreast. Upon the walls stood 1500 towers, each 200 feet in height, and the whole was so strong as to be deemed impregnable. (Diod. Sic, 2, 3.-Nahum, c. 2.) According to the Greek writers, Ninus was founded by a king of the same name (vid. Ninus I.), but in the book of Genesis it is stated to ".* built sy Assur, or, if we adopt the marginal translation, by Nimrod. (Vid. Assyria.) Possibly Nimrod and Ninus were the same.—Nineveh was the residence of the Assyrian monarchs (2 Kings, 19, 36. — Isaiah, 37, 37–Compare Strabo, 84, 737), and it is mentioned as a place of great commercial.importance; whence Nahum speaks of its merchants as more than the stars of heaven (3, 16). But, as in the case of most large and wealthy cities, the greatest corruption and licentiousness prevailed, on account of which Nahum and Zephaniah foretold its destruction.—Nineveh, which for 1450 years had been mistress of the East, to whom even Babylon itself was subject, was first taken in the reign of Sardanapalus, B.C. 747, by the Medes and Babylonians, who had revolted under their governors Arbaces and Belesis. This event put an end to the first Assyrian empire, and divided its immense territory into two lesser kingdoms, those of Assyria and Babylon. But Nineveh itself suffered little change from this event; it was still a great city; and, soon after, in the reign of Esarhaddon, who took Babylon, it became again the capital of both empires, which continued 54 years; when Nabopolassar, a general in the Assyrian army, and father of the famous Nebuchadnezzar, seized on Babylon and proclaimed himself king: after which Nineveh was no more the seat of government of both kingdoms. It was, in fact, now on the decline, and was soon to yield to the rising power of its great rival. The Medes had again revolted, and in the year 633 B.C., their king Cyaxares, having defeated the Assyrians in a great battle, laid siege to Nineveh; but its time was not yet come, and it was delivered on this occasion by an invasion of Media by the Scythians, which obliged Cyaxares to withdraw his army to repel them. But in the year 612, having formed an alliance with Nabopolassar, king of Babylon, he returned, accompanied by that monarch, to the siege of Nineveh, and finally took the city. The prophecy made by Zephaniah, of its utter destruction, must refer to this latter event. Strabo says that it fell into decay immediately after the dissolution of the Assyrian monarchy; and this account is confirmed by the fact, that, in the history of Alexander the Great, the place is not mentioned, although in his march along the Tigris, previous to the battle of Arbela, he must have been very near the spot where it is supposed to have stood. Under the Roman emperors, however, we read of a city named Ninus (Tacit., Ann., 12, 13) or Ninive (Amm. Marcell., 18, 7); and Abulpharagi, in the 13th century, mentions a castle called Niniri. —Little doubt can arise that Nineveh was situate near the Tigris, and yet the exact site of that once mighty city has never been clearly ascertained. On the eastern bank of the Tigris, opposite the town of Mosul, and partly on the site of the modern village of Nunia or Nebbi Yunus, are some considerable ruins, which have been described at different periods by Benjamin of Tudela, Thevenot, Tavernier, &c., as those of ancient Nineveh. But it is thought by others, from the dimensions of the ruins, that these travellers must have been mistaken; and that the remains described by them were those of some city of much smaller extent and more recent date than the Scripture Nineveh. Mr. Kinneir, who visited this spot in the year 1808, says, that “On the opposite bank of the Tigris (that is, over against Mosul), and about three quarters of a mile from that stream, the village of Nunia and sepulchre of the prophet Jonas seem to point out the position of Nineveh.”—“A city being after. ward elected near this spot, bore the name of Ninus; and, in my opinion, it is the ruins of the latter, and not of the old Nineveh, that are now visible. I examined these ruins in November, 1810, and found them to consist of a rampart and a fosse, forming an oblong square not exceeding four miles in compass, if so much. I saw neither stones nor rubbish of any kind. The wall

is, on an average, 20 feet in height; and, as it is cowered with grass, the whole has a striking resemblance to some of the Roman intrenchments which are extant in England.” . Mr. Kinneir's opinions are in everything worthy of respect, and with regard to these ruins, the traces of the wall point them out very evidently as belonging to some city or building of much less dimensions than ancient Nineveh ; while these traces being visible at all would seem to place their date long subsequent to that of the structure of the Scripture Nineveh. It cannot be supposed, that while the walls of Babylon, which were at least as high and as thick, according to the concurrent testimony of historians, as those of Nineveh, and were entire long aster the destruction of that city, are utterly effaced, those of Nineveh should still be visible. Mr. Rich, indeed, supposes that he has discovered in these intrenchments the ruins of the palace of Nineveh; which he describes as an enclosure of a rectangular form, corresponding with the cardinal points of the compass; the area of which is not larger than that of the town of Mosul. The boundary of this enclosure may, he says, be perfectly traced all around; and looks like an embankment of earth or rubbish of small elevation, and has attached to it, and in its line at several places, mounds of greater size and solidity. The first of these forms the southwest angle; and on it is built the village of Nebbi Yunus, where they show the tomb of the prophet Jonas. The next, and largest of all, which Mr. Rich supposes to be the monument of Ninus, is situate near the centre of the western face of the enclosure, and is joined, like the others, by the boundary wall; the natives call it Koyunjuk Tepe. Its form is that of a truncated pyramid, with regular steep sides and a flat top, and composed of stones and earth; there being sufficient of the latter to admit of cultivation by the inhabitants of Koyunjuk, which is built at the northeast extremity. This mound, according to measurements taken by Mr. Rich, is 178 feet high, 1850 long from east to west, and 1147 broad from north to south. The other mounds on the boundary wall offer nothing worthy of remark; but out of one of these, a short time since, an immense block of stone was dug, on which were sculptured the figures of men and animals; cylinders, like those of Babylon, with some other antiques, and stones of very large dimensions, are also occasionally dug up. Whether these ruins be really what Mr. Rich supposes them to be, or a part only of the more recent city referred to by Mr. Kinneir, cannot be decided. It is quite clear, however, that of whatever structure these mounds may be the remains, their dimensions will not allow us to consider them as those of the walls of Nineveh : they must either be those of a palace, as supposed by Mr. Rich, or of some other stupendous building of that city, or of a more modern one erected on this spot; and the uncertainty which exists on this point is alone sufficient to testify the fulfilment of the prophecies. In fact, these prophecies respecting Nineveh have long since received their entire completion; “an utter end is made of the place,” and the true site may for ever be sought in vain. (Mansford's Scripture Gazetteer, p. 339, seqq.—Drummond's Origines, p. 172, seqq.)

$o. a son of Ninus and Semiramis, king of Assyria, who succeeded his mother on her volunarily abdicating the crown. (Vid. Semiramis.) Altogether unlike his parents, he gave himself up to a life of seclusion and pleasure, in which he was imitated by his successors. (Diod. Sc., 2, 21 )

Niobe, daughter of Tantalus, king of Lydia, was married to Amphion, by whom she had, according to Ovid and other ancient writers, seven sons and seven daughters. This is the most commonly received opinion, though Homer (Il., 24, 602) and others give the number variously. The pride of Niobe at having this numerous offspring was so great, that she is said to have insulted Latona, the rhother of Apollo and Diana, by refusing to offer at the altars raised in her honour, declaring that she herself had a better claim to worship and sacrifices than one who was the mother of only two children. Latona, indignant at this insolence and presumption, called upon her children for revenge. Apollo and Diana heard her prayer, and obeyed the entreaty of their outraged parent. All the sons of Niobe fell by the arrows of Apollo, while the daughters, in like manner, met their death from the hands of Diana. Chloris alone escaped the common sate. She was the wise of Neleus, king of Pylos. This terrible judgment of the gods so affected the now heartstricken and humiliated Niobe, that she was changed by her excessive grief into a stone on Mount Sipylus, in Lydia. Amphion also, in attempting, in retaliation, to destroy the temple of Apollo, perished by the shafts of that deity. (Ovid, Met. 6, 146, seqq.—Hygin., fab., 9.-Apollod., 3, 5, 6–Soph., Antig, 823, seqq.) Pausanias says, that the rock on Sipylus, which went by the name of Niobe, and which he had visited, “was merely a rock and precipice when one came close up to it, and bore no resemblance at all to a woman ; but at a distance you might imagine it to be a woman weeping with downcast countenance.” (Pausan., 1, 21, 3.)—The myth of Niobe has been explained by Wölcker and others in a physical sense. According to these writers, the name Niobe (Nú6m, i. e., Neo6m) denotes Youth or Newness. She is the daughter of the Flourishing-one (Tantalus), and the mother of the Green-one (Chloris). In her, then, we may view the young, verdant, fruitful earth, the bride of the sun (Amphion), beneath the influence of whose fecundating beams she pours forth vegetation with lavish profusion. The revolution of the year, however, denoted by Apollo and Diana (other forms of the sun and moon), withers up and destroys her progeny; she weeps and stiffens to stone (the torrents and frosts of winter); but Chloris, the Green-one, remains, and spring clothes the earth anew with its smiling verdure. (Wölcker, Myth, der Jap., p. 359–Keightley's My. thology, p. 338.)—The legend of Niobe and her children has afforded a subject for art, which has been finely treated by one of the greatest ancient masters of sculpture. It consists of a series, rather than a group, of figures of both sexes, in all the disorder and agony of expected or present suffering; while one, the mother, the hapless Niobe, in the most affecting attitude of supplication, and with an expression of deep grief, her eyes turned upward, implores the justly-offended gods to moderate their anger and spare her offspring, one of whom, the youngest girl, she strains fondly to her bosom. It is difficult, however, by description, to do justice to the various excellence exhibited in this admirable work. The arrangement of the composition is supposed to have been adapted to a tympanum or pediment. The figure of Niobe, of colossal dimensions compared with the other figures, forms, with her youngest daughter pressed to her, the centre. The execution of this interesting monument of Greek art is attributed by some to Scopas, while others think it the production of Praxiteles. Pliny says it was a question which of the two was the author of it. The group was in the temple of Apollo Sosianus at Rome. (Plin., 36, 10–Sillig, Dict. Art., s. v.) This beautiful piece of sculpture is now in the gallery of the Grand-duke of Tuscany at Florence, though some regard it merely as a copy.—The subject of Niobe and her children was a favourite one also with the poets of antiquity. Besides the beautiful allusion to it in the Antigone of Sophocles (v. 823, seqq.), and the equally beautiful story in Ovid (Met, 6, 146, seqq.), there are numerous epigrams in the Greek Anthology, several of which have great merit, and appear to be descriptive either of the group of figures which still exists, or of

some similar group. (Encycl. Us. Knowl, vol. 16, p. 238.) Niphites, a range of mountains in Armenia, form ing part of the great chain of Taurus, and lying to the southeast of the Arsissa Palus, or Lake Van. Their summits were covered with snow during the whole year, and to this circumstance the name Niphates is supposed to allude (Nupatmo, quasi vigerøðms, “snowy”). There was also a river of the same nama rising in this mountain chain. (Virg., Georg., 3, 30. —Horat, Od., 2, 9–Mela, 1, 15.— Pliny, 5, 27.— Amm. Marcell., 23, 6– Cellarius, Geogr., vol. 2, p. 321.) Nureus, a king of Naxos, son of Charops and Aglaia. He was one of the Grecian chiefs during the Trojan war, and was celebrated for his beauty. (Hom., ll., 2,671.-Horut., Od., 3, 20, 15.) Nisaea, I. a city and district of Upper Asia, near the sources of the river Ochus, now the Margah. According to Strabo, it would appear to have been situate between Parthiene and Hyrcania. (Strab., 511. —Compare Mannert, Geogr., vol. 5, pt. 1, p. 100.) The same writer states elsewhere (p. 508) that it belonged in part to Hyrcania, and was in part an independent district. The city of Nisaea, however, is generally considered to have been the chief city of Parthiene, becoming such, no doubt, on the first spread of the Parthian power. Mannert, in consequence, seeks to identify it with the Asaak (probably Arsak) of Isidorus of Charax (p. 7).-The famous Nisaean horses are thought to have come from this quarter. D'Anville gives Nesa as the modern name of the city of Nisaea, and remarks that it “has before it was: plains, proper for the Parthian Nomades, or shepherds. as they were characterized. And it was thence that the Turkish sultan, ancestor of the Ottoman family, departed for the banks of the Euphrates” (vol. 2, p 69, Am. ed.). Mannert merely places Nisaea near the modern Herat.—II. The harbour of Megara, situate on the Saronic Gulf, and connected with the main city by long walls. The citadel was also called by the same name, and stood on the road between Megara and the port. It was a place of considerable strength. Thucydides states (4, 66) that the citadel might be cut off from the city by effecting a breach in the long wall. (Cramer's Anc. Greece, vol. 2, p. 433.) Nisibis, a large and populous city of Mesopotamia, about two days journey from the Tigris, in the midst of a pleasant and fertile plain at the foot of Mons Masius, and on the river Mygdonius. The name was changed by the Macedonians into Antiochia Mygdonica ('Avrtóxeta Mvydovukm), but this new appellation only lasted as long as their power. When the Macedonian sway ceased, the old maine of Nisibis was resumed. The Romans became acquainted with it for the first time during the war carried on by Lucullus against the King of Armenia (Plut., Wit. Lucull.), and it was then represented as a large and populous city, situate in the midst of a fruitful territory. It was taken and plundered by Lucullus. (Dio Cass., 35, 7.) The Parthians subsequently became masters of the place, and held it until the time of Trajan, who took it from them. (Dio Cass., 68, 23.) Hadrian gave back to the Parthians the provinces conquered from them, and yet Nisibis appears as a Roman city in the expedition of Severus. It had very probably, therefore, been taken by the generals of Lucius Verus. Severus declared it a Roman colony, and the capital of the province : he also adorned and strengthened it. (Dio Cass., 75, 3–Id., 30, 6–Spanheim, de usu. N., p. 606.) From this period it remained, for the space of two centuries, a strong bulwark of the Roman empire in this quarter, against which all the attacks of the Persian power were directed in vain, with the exception of two instances, when it was taken and held by this nation, though only for a short imo, (Capital. Wit. Gordian. terl., c. 26.-Trebellii, Wit. Odenat., c. 15.) After the death of Julian, Nisibis was ceded to Sapor, king of Persia, by Jovian, and remained henceforth for the Persians, what it had thus far been to the Romans, a strong frontier town. The latter could never regain possession of it.—The modern Nisibin or Nissabin, which occupies the site of the ancient city, is represented as being little better than a mere village. (Mannert, Geogr., vol. 5, pt. 2, p. 297, seqq.) Nisus, I. a son of Hyrtacus, born on Mount Ida, near Troy. He came to Italy with Æneas, and was united by ties of the closest attachment to Euryalus, son of Opheltes. During the prosecution of the war with Turnus, Nisus, to whom the defence of one of the entrances of the camp was intrusted, determined to sally forth in search of tidings of Æneas. Euryalus accompanied him in this perilous undertaking. Fortune at first seconded their efforts, but they were at length surprised by a Latin detachment. Euryalus was cut down by Volscens; the latter was as immediately despatched by the avenging hand of Nisus; who, however, overpowered by numbers, soon shared the fate of his friend. (Virg., AEn., 9, 176, seqq.— Compare AEm., 5,334, seqq.)—II. A king of Megara. In the war waged by Minos, king of Crete, against the Athenians, on account of the death of Androgeus (vid. Androgeus), Megara was besieged, and it was taken through the treachery of Scylla, the daughter of Nisus. This prince had a golden or purple lock of hair growing on his head; and as long as it remained uncut, so long was his life to last. Scylla, having seen Minos, fell in love with him, and resolved to give him the victory. She cut off her father's precious lock as he slept, and he immediately died : the town was then taken by the Cretans. But Minos, instead of rewarding the maiden, disgusted with her unnatural treachery, tied her by the feet to the stern of his vessel, and thus dragged her along until she was drowned. (Apollod., 3, 15, 1–Schol. ad Eurip., Hippol., 1195.) Another legend adds, that Nisus was changed into the bird called the Sea-eagle (džtáetoc), and Scylla into that named Ciris (keipts), and that the father continually pursues the daughter to punish her for her crime. (Ovid, Met., 8, 145. — Virg., Cir.—Id., Georg., 1, 403.) According to AEschylus (Choēph., 609, seqq.), Minos bribed Scylla with a golden collar. (Keightley's Mythology, p. 385.) Nisyros, I. an island in the AEgean, one of the Sporades, about sixty stadia north of Telos. Strabo describes it as a lofty and rocky isle, with a town of the same name. Mythologists pretended, that this island had been separated from Cos by Neptune, in order that he might hurl it against the giant Polyboetes. (Strabo,448. Apollod., I, 6, 2. Pausan., 1, 2– Steph. Byz., s. v.) Herodotus informs us that the Nisyrians were subject at one time to Artemisia, queen of Caria (7, 99). The modern name is Nisari. From this island is procured a large number of good mill

stones. (Cramer's Anc. Greece, vol. 3, p. 418.)—II. The chief town in the island of Carpathus. (Strabo, 489.)

NITÉtis, a daughter of Apries, king of Egypt, married by his successor Amasis to Cambyses. Herodotus states (3, 1), that Cambyses was instigated to ask in marriage the daughter of Amasis, by a certain physician, whom Amasis had compelled to go to Persia when Cyrus, the father of Cambyses, was suffering from weak eyes, and requested the Egyptian king to send him a man skilled in medicine. The physician did this, either that Amasis might experience affliction at the loss of his daughter, or provoke Cambyses by a refusal. Amasis, however, did not send his own daughter, but Nitetis, who discovered the deception to Cambyses, which so exasperated that monarch that he determined to make war on Amasis. Prideaux denies the truth of this account, on the ground that

Apries having been dead above 40 years, no daughter of his could have been young enough to be acceptable to Cambyses. Larcher, however, endeavours to reconcile the apparent improbability, by saying, that there is great reason to suppose that Apries lived a prisoner many years after Amasis had dethroned him, and that, therefore, Nitetis might have been no more than 20 or 22 years of age when she was sent to Cambyses, (Larcher, ad Herod., l.c.) Nitiohriges, a people of Gaul, of Celtic origin, but who settled among the Aquitani. Their chief city was Nitiobrigum or Agennum, on the Garumna, now Agen, and their territory answers to l'Agennois, in the Department de Lot et Garonne. (Caes., B. G., 7, 7.-Lemaire, Ind. Geogr., ad Caos., s. v.) Nitócris, I. a queen of Babylon, generally supposed to have been the wife of Nebuchodonosor or Nebuchadnezzar, and grandmother, consequently, to Labyne. tus or Nabonedus, who is called in Daniel Belshatzar or Beltzasar. (Heeren, Ideen, vol. 1, pt. 2, p. 154 —Larcher, ad Herod., 1, 184.) Wesseling, however, and others, make her the queen of Evilmerodach, son of Nebuchadnezzar. (Wesseling, ad Herod., l.c.)— Herodotus informs us, that Nitocris, in order to render her territories more secure from the Medes, altered the course of the Euphrates, and made it so very winding that it came in its course three times to Ardericca. (Wid. Ardericca.) She also faced the banks of the Euphrates, where it passed through Babylon, with burned bricks, and connected the two divisions of the city by a bridge of stone. (Herod., 1, 186.) The historian likewise informs us, that she prepared a sepulchre for herself over the most frequented gate of the city, with an inscription to this effect, that if any of her successors should find himself in want of money, he should open this sepulchre and take as much as he might think fit; but that, if he were not reduced to real want, he ought to sorbear: otherwise he would have cause to repent. This monument remained untouched till the reign of Darius; who, judging it unreasonable that the gate should remain useless to the inhabitants (for no man would pass under a dead body), and that an inviting treasure, moreover, should be rendered unserviceable, broke open the sepulchre: but, instead of money, he found only the remains of Nitocris, and the following inscription: “Hadst thou not been insatiably covetous, and greedy after the most sordid gain, thou wouldst not have violated the sepulchres of the dead.” (Herod., 1, 187.) Plutarch tells the same story of Semiratnis. (Apophth., Reg. et Duc.—vol. 6, p. 661, ed. Reiske.) The custom, however, of depositing treasures in the tombs of deceased monarchs was very common with the ancients. Solomon did this in the case of David's sepulchre; and Hyrcanus, and after him Herod, both opened the tomb and obtained large amounts of treasure from it. (Joseph, Ant. Jud, 7, 15.—Id. ib., 13, 8.)—II. A queen of Egypt, who succeeded her brother. The Egyptians, having dethroned and put to death the latter, set her over them. . She took a singular revenge, however, for the death of her brother; for, having constructed a large subterranean apartment, and having invited to an entertainment in it those individuals who had been most concerned in her brother's murder, she let in the river by a secret passage, and drowned them all. She then destroyed herself. (Herod., 2, 100.) Heeren takes this Nitocris for a queen of AEthiopian origin ; no instance of a reigning queen being found among the pure Egyptian dynasties. (Ideen, vol. 2, pt. 1, p. 412.) Jablonski approves of the interpretation which Eratosthenes gives to the name Nitocris, according to whom it is equivalent to 'Affnvā vuongopoc. (Jablonsk., Voc. AEgypt, p. 162.) NITRíA, a city of Egypt, to the west of the Canopic branch of the Nile, in the desert near the lakes which afforded nitre. It gave name to the Nitriotic nome,

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