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Οἷα μάλιστα πόκοισιν ἐοικότα ἰνδάλλονται· “Η διδύμη ἔζωσε διὰ μέγαν οὐρανὸν Τρις·
interdum semperque leves, sed in densiorem nubem et denuo in nimbum imbres effundentem coituræ.
208. Vel duplex iris cœlum circumnectit.-Ipse Irida imbrium couitem maluerin quam prognosticum vocare; quoniam numquam videri potest, nisi cadente pluvia. Neque duplex arcus magis tempestuosa quam simplex est. Sed prognosticum hoc ex Theophrasto haustum video: *Οταν ἶρις γίνηται, (ὕδωρ) ἐπισημαίνει· ἐάν τε πολλαὶ ἴριδες γένωνται, σημαίνει ὕδωρ ἐπὶ TOAú. [Theoph. Sign. Pluv.] Geopon. ex Arato habet, Ipis dè diπλî pavēîσa, Zußpov înλoî. [Geop. ex Arat.]
Virgilius notat :—ante pluviam, -et bibit ingens
[Virg. Geor. i. 381.] Statius in Thebaid. scribit, "At pater arcano residens Ismenos
Unde auræ nubesque bibunt, atque imbrifer arcus
Pascitur, et Trios melior venit annus in agros."
[Stat. Thebaid. ix. 405.] Et in Sylv.
“ Quæque cadit liquidas Junonia vir
go per auras, Et picturato pluvium ligat aëra gyro." [Stat. Sylv. V. i. 103.] Tibullus scribit, "Quamvis prætexens picea ferrugine cœlum
Venturam admittat imbrifer arcus aquam."
[Tibul. Eleg. I. iv. 44.] Propertius se discere velle fatetur, “Qua venit exoriens, qua deficit, unde coactis
[Propert. Eleg. III. v. 32.] Seneca in Edipo, "Imbrifera qualis implicat varios sibi Iris colores, parte quæ magna poli Curvata picto nunciat nimbos sinu.",
[Senec. (Edip. v. 317.] Quum Iris in adveniente nimbo visa est, certe aquam præmonet, si contra in recedente pluviam finitam.
Plautus in Curculione observat, "Ecce autem bibit arcus; pluet
Credo hercle hodie." [Plautus Curcul. I. ii. 42.] Plinius ex veterum auctoritate scribit, "Arquus cum sunt duplices pluvias nunciant et pluviis serenitatem non perinde certam." [Plin. Hist. Nat. xviii. 35.] A pluviis serenitatem hac de causa, quod arcus minime in late circumfusa nube apparere possit; ergo quum apparet, nimbum claro aere circumsessum demonstrat, qui` sæpe post pluviam longam cœlum serenat; non tamen certam serenitatem nunciat, quia plurimi nimbi volantes consequenter cœlum transcurrunt, et eorum duratio incerta est. Ex Iride pluviam finiendam nunciante scriptum est in libro Geneseos, TÙ TÓKOV μοῦ τίθημι ἐν τῇ νεφέλῃ, καὶ ἔσται εἰς σημεῖο ον διαθήκης ἀνὰ μέσσον ἐμοῦ καὶ τῆς γῆς. [Gen. ix. 13. secund. Sept.]
Proverbium nostrum, e mane surgente nimbo, memorat: "A Rainbow in the morning Is the Shepherd's warning."
Sed post pluviosam diem, "A Rainbow at night Is the Shepherd's delight." [Prov. citat. Pointer on Weather, p. 62.1
208. Siduun, duplex arcus frequens est, triplex quam rarissime videtur; conferendus est Aristoteles, Διπλῆ δὲ καὶ ἀμαυροτέρα τοῖς χρώμασιν καὶ περιέχουσα καὶ τῇ θέσει τὰς χρόας ἐξ ἀναντίας ἔχει μειμένας διὰ τὴν αὐτὴν αἰτίαν. Paullo infra, Τρεῖς δὲ οὐκέτι γίνονται οὐδὲ πλείους ἴριδες, διὰ τὸ καὶ τὴν δευτέραν γίγνεσθαι ἀμαυροτέραν, ὥστε καὶ τὴν τρίτην ἀνάκλασιν πάμπαν ἀσθενῆ γίγνεσθαι καὶ ἀδυνατεῖν
“Η καί που τὶς ἁλωα μελαινομένην ἔχει ἀστήρ.
Tum color in nigris existit nubibus arqui."
[Lucret. de Rer Nat. vi. 525.] Multi secuti sunt; inter Epigrammata invenimus, "Cum radiis imbres et aquarum pendulus humor Tangitur, existit, quam Græcia nominat, Iris."
àpiкvεîσbαι трòs Tòv Lov. [Aristot. xviii. 35.] Alio loco scribit," Existunt Meteor. iii. 5.]
Caussam Iridis reddit Lucretius, "Hinc ubi Sol radiis tempestatem inter opacam
Aversa fuisit nimborum adspergine
eædem coronæ circa Lunam et circa nobiliora astra cœlo quoque inhærentia." [Plin. Hist. Nat. ii. 29.] De halonibus satis supra. Theophrastus in Sign. Pluv. Καὶ ἅλως μελαῖναι ὑδατικὸν καὶ μᾶλλον αἱ δείλης. [Theoph. Sign. Pluv.] In quibusdam America regionibus, ut audio, frequentiores sunt hæ coronæ halonesque quam nobiscum. Refer ad Excursum.
[Epigram. Burman. edit. Anthol. Lat. Vol. ii. p. 311.]
Etiam, "Clara sub ætheriis fulget Thaumantia proles Nubibus, ut radiis pluvium Sol adtigit
Et picturato cœlum velamine pingit."
A dewy cloud, and in the cloud a bow
gay, Betokening peace from God, and covenant new."
[Milton Parad. Lost, xi. 867.] Sed plura de Iride cf. in Excurs. de lucis refractione.
209. Iterum pluviarum indicium ex halone sumit, de quo plurima supra-Vel etiamnum stella aliqua halonem nigricantem habet--'AoTnp non solum stella, proprie sic dicta, verum quodvis corpus cœleste intelligenda est. Sol, Luna, nobilioresque stellæ aliquando circa se lucidum orbem habent. Sed numquam vidi halonem verum seu annulum circa stellas. Plinius eadem cum incautione scribit," Circuli novi circa sidera aliqua pluviam." [Plin. Hist. Nat.
210-211. Jam agit de pluviæ prognosticis et avibus-Sæpe aves palustres aut marinæ insaturabiliter se inmergunt aquam desiderantes. Geopon. ex Arato, Ἔτι δὲ καὶ ὀρνεῖς καὶ Avaîai kal ai baλáttiai, ènì idatos ouve χῶς λουόμενοι, χειμῶνα δηλοῦσιν. [Geopon. i. 3. cit. Buhle. Arat. Vol. i. p. 461.] Theophrastus idem scripsit, αἴθυιαι καὶ νῆτται πτερυγίζουσαι καὶ ἀγριαὶ καὶ τιθάσσαι ὕδωρ μὲν σημαίνουσι δυομένη. [Theoph. Sign. Vent.] ut supr. cit. Sed alio loco ad terrestres aves prognosticumtranstulit, Oμolas de Kal Kool καὶ ἀλεκτρύονες ἐάν τε ἐπὶ λίμνῃ ἢ θαλάττῃ καὶ ἐρωδιος ὄρθριον φθεγγόμενος ὕδωρ ἀποπτερυγίζωνται, ὡς νῆττα ὕδωρ σημαίνει, Veμa onμalve. [Theoph. Sign. Pluv.j Vetat Ælianus, qui terrestres aquam petentes serenitatis indicium accipit, Οἱ δὲ χερσαῖοι σπεύδοντες ἐς τὰ νοτερὰ εὐδίας ἄγγελοί εἰσι ἐὰν μέντοι σίω. [Elian. Hist. Anim. vii. 7.] Cum vero lavatione delectantur, procellas, ̓Απειλοῦσι δὲ καὶ πνεῦμα, λουόμεναί τε ὄρνιθες καὶ ἀνέμων τινὰς ἀμβολὰς ὑποφαίVOVOL. [Ibid.]
Virgilius ex Arato de signis pluvia venturæ scribit:
« Jam varias pelagi volucres et quæ
Dulcibus in stagnis rimantur prata
Certatim largos humeris infundere
[Virg. Geor. i. 387.]
Nunc caput objectare fretis, nunc cur
rere in undas
studio incassum videas gestire
OXFORD PRIZE ESSAY
The subjects of Biography considered. 1. The lives of eminent public men. This department of Biography is closely connected with Historybut superior to it in moral usefulness. 2. Lives of men distinguished in literature, art, and science-why peculiarly interesting. 3. Miscellaneous lives.
The manner of treating biographical subjects-must depend on various circumstances-as, distance of time.-Conteniporary memoirs contrasted with learned compilations on ancient lives.-The most essential qualities of Biography, Copiousness and Impartiality.-Difficulty of avoiding either unnecessary minuteness or insipid generality.-Correspondence of friends considered as an illustration of character.-Impartiality not to be expected from writers of their own lives.-Biographical works consisting of mere panegyric.-Lives written by friends of persons deceased.-Conclusion.
THE acts and characters of men whose virtues or talents, misfortunes or successes, have influenced the course of public events, will naturally supply the earliest subjects of biographical narration. Illustrious names and extraordinary achievements engage the attention and awaken the zeal of writers in every age, and the desire of tracing an eminent man through a series of great actions is heightened in most instances by national or local partiality. And as an acquaintance with general history becomes more widely diffused,
"Tum liceat pelagi volucres tardæque
[Varro. Frag. in Catalect. Vet. Poët.
A certo hoc tempestatis ex avium lavatione prognostico, aves quæ se
non immergunt pro bono signo navi-
Hunc optant nautæ quia non se mer-
Ex eadem re pro fasto omine sumuntur cycni a Virgilio.
men seek with increasing eagerness a minuter and more familiar knowledge of persons, who have distinguished themselves in that diversified scene; they turn from the wider and more comprehensive survey of events with awakened but unsatisfied curiosity; like the inexperienced beholder of a vast and crowded picture, who instinctively draws nearer to the canvas, but discovers, as he advances, that the colors have not grown brighter, nor the figures more defined.
As literature and science begin to assume their just preeminence among human pursuits, the province of Biography is rapidly extended; and men who have had no share in the public transac tions of their age, but have adorned it by their genius or their labors, are allowed to divide our attention with princes, warriors, and politicians. If mankind still delight in those scenes of ambitious life, which abound in great and surprising occurrences, they begin also to value the more refined satisfaction of observing the growth and habits of superior mind; what assistance it has borrowed, or what impediments encountered, from external events; what studies have matured the scholar, what incident has aroused the poet, or what lessons have formed the philosopher.
But in later times, when the more general cultivation of literature. encourages an unbounded increase of writings on every subject, Biography takes a far wider range, and a place is found for individuals of humbler merit and less extended celebrity. In a free and prosperous country more particularly, where society has formed itself into many great and distinct branches, and innumerable avenues lie open to renown, it is esteemed no useless or unworthy office of the Biographer, to record those instances of superior virtue or talents, which, without commanding the attention of mankind in general, have illuminated and embellished their own peculiar sphere of active or studious life.
That species of Biography which commemorates persons distinguished in public affairs, is dignified and recommended by its association with History; an alliance so intimate, that each occasionally deviates into the style and method of the other; the history of a nation becomes subordinate to that of an individual, and the narrative of a life expands into the chronicle of a state. We see the Biographer expatiate in disquisitions on politics and manners, and the Historian lay open the human mind with its secret passions and infirmities. Thus the profound and elegant Roman annalist has traced a portrait of Tiberius, more expressive and more truly biographical, than is presented in the deliberate exposition of his character by the minuter hand of Suetonius.
A simple detail of campaigns and embassies, of martial exploits and political intrigues, comprised in the life of a warrior or states
man, may be valuable for its information, and still more for that lucid arrangement which reduces many facts to a connected series, and by combining, makes them illustrate and explain each other. Still, however, the Biographer should aim at higher excellences. He may indeed relate with fidelity the acts and speeches of a great man, may insist with energy on his wise counsels, or his virtuous example; but it is only when the manners, the familiar habits, the daily conversation, the very look and gesture, are revived, and rendered present to our imagination, that we own the force and impressive truth of the finished picture. It is thus that Biography enlightens and animates the materials of History, and brings down the greatness of political events to a natural association with the ordinary occurrences of life. By this peculiar charm the spirited narratives of Plutarch continue, at the present day, to captivate even those who are as far removed by their course of life as by lapse of time from the scenes described: and thus have the most extravagant and romantic adventures of modern times been not only rendered credible to posterity, but invested with unquestionable signs of nature and reality by the Biographer of Charles the Twelfth.
But whatever praise may belong to this species of writing as a graceful appendage and supplement to History, it surpasses History itself in moral instruction. A short comparison will sufficiently point out the causes of a superiority which might indeed be claimed on similar grounds for Biography in general, but belongs more plainly and indisputably to that particular department which is strictly historical.
The lessons of the Biographer apply themselves immediately to the feelings and interests of every individual. It is the business of History to separate and distinguish men from the mass of society, and exhibit them in those situations to which the generality of mankind are persuaded they will never be summoned. Biography, on the other hand, reminds us at every page how much we have in common with those whom fortune appears to have placed farthest from us; it dwells upon those incidents in which all lives must to a certain degree resemble each other; it draws our attention from events to persons, from external and accidental circumstances to the intrinsic and permanent qualities of mind; it accustoms us to consider accurately the relation which men's public actions bear to their characters, education, and peculiar habits; and thus teaches
1 Οὔτε γὰρ ἱστορίας γράφομεν, ἀλλὰ βίους· οὔτε ταῖς ἐπιφανεστάταις πράξεσι πάντως ἔνεστι δήλωσις ἀρετῆς ἢ κακίας, ἀλλὰ πρᾶγμα βραχὺ πολλάκις, καὶ ῥῆμα, καὶ παιδία τις, ἔμφασιν͵ ἤθους ἐποίησεν μᾶλλον, ἢ μάχαι μυριόνεκροι, καὶ παρατάξεις αἱ μεγίσται, καὶ #OдIOρKíα TÓλEW, Plutarch. in Alexand.