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to effect. Knowing only a portion of the globe, and con a Phænician pilot, sailed in the ship Argo, over the Euxine, ceiving that portion to be upon an extended plane, those which we now call the Black Sea, to recover the treasure who hold a voyage from Crete to Egypt to be a signal which had been carried away by Phryxus, in the ship proof of naval courage, and who had never reached Sicily Aries, or Ram. The Phænician word for treasure, is or Africa, but by a wayward tempest, or by shipwreck, and almost the same as the Greek word for fleece. Hence, the who were then objects of wonder at having escaped the confusion of ideas, by which the poets profited to adorn dangers of Scylla and Charybdis, and the Syrtes, those their legends, for Jason was reported to have made a voyage wave-bound prisons of mariners, might justly have feared to recover the ram with the golden fieece. Those who for themselves, in being committed to unknown waters, manned Jason's ship, were called Argonauts, or sailors of and in tracking shores, which the reports of others, who had the Argo; and, at their return, declared that their passage never seen these regions, no less than their own fears, had had been alongside of the abodes of the just and the represented as the abode of every horror. In short, dis- prisons of the infernal regions. tance from the land seems to have alarmed all the ancients; Some endeavour to clear up the account of this voyage, who, upon every occasion, when quitting sight of the shore by relating that the inhabitants on the eastern side of the fancied they saw, as Homer tells us,
Euxine Sea were in the habit of extending fleeces of wool, A length of ocean and unbounded sky,
to catch the golden particles which were washed down Which scarce the sea-fowl in a year o'erfly.
from Mount Caucasus. The general truth of these observations is corroborated
2. It is believed by some commentators on the Bible, by the story of the Pamphylian, who was taken prisoner, Christian era, sent large fleets down the Red Sea, and so
that Solomon, who lived about a thousand years before the and carried to Egypt. He was kept as a slave, for a very long time, at a town near one of the mouths of the Nile,
eastward to India; or towards the south-west, along the
African coast. where Damietta now stands. Being frequently employed
These ships were managed by Tyrian to assist in maritime business, he conceived the idea of mariners who were the most expert of the day; yet, for committing himself to the mercy of the waves in a sailing want of the mariner's compass, their navigation was perboat, in order that he might once again behold his native formed by coasting along the shores; so that a royage to country. Having provided himsell
, to the best of his India is said to have frequently taken up three years, as we means and ability, he set sail, resolving rather to perish in read in the Sacred Record. Prideaux thinks that the suc the bosom of the old ocean than to remain longer in cap-ceeding kings of Judah carried on the same commerce; tivity. He traversed the vast expanse of waters which
which was at length lost, when Elath, their port on the lies between Egypt and Asia Minor, and arrived sately at
Red Sea, was taken from King Ahaz by Rezin, King of Pamphylia. From this bold and unusual adventure he lost
Damascus. (2 Kings xvi. 6.) It would seem as if this inhis original name, and received the appellation of Mono
tercourse with India was stopped for several centuries after nautes, or the lone sailor, which, for a long time after,
the times we have just spoken of. we may presume, served his family as a patent of nobility: calm analysis, be found to consist of some degree of truth.
3. The following mythological narration may, by a little We have the foregoing account from Eustathius, the commentator of Homer.
Neptune is reported to have delivered the princess Hesione Navigation has served to bring the families of the earth
from a monster, raised by some divine interposition out of nearer together, to remove ignorance and barren limitation
the sea, and to which she was exposed by express command of thought; and consequently, it has been a means for
of the oracle. It is probable that this Neptune was Ra advancing the landmarks of knowledge and civilization, and meses, who, being a chief of restless disposition, quitted for helping man to appreciate the acts of a Divine Provi- Egypt, bis native country, incited either by a thirst of dence. But, as it is entirely consonant with humanity that effecting some territorial discovery, or a lust of acquiring the increase of knowledge should carry with it its alloy of by conquest the dominion of some foreign country. Chance evil, we find that the means for spreading knowledge, served
or inclination conducted him and his followers to that spot, also as a vehicle for the diffusion of falsehood. The accounts: through a country by means deemed preternatural by all
where their bravery as warriors, and their skill in passing therefore, that have been handed down to us of the exploits not acquainted with them, made them to be honoured and of early navigators must be received without prejudice either way, and their errors and their romances must be feared, as beings of a superior order. The marine monster imputed to the right source. This source seems to be of a
we may fairly interpret to have been a vessel, conveying to twofold nature; firstly, misapprehension in making their
the same spot some unknown adventurers equally bold, but observations and statements, arising from ignorance and who, being less powerful, or less fortunate, fell easily before want of experience, which engender fear: secondly, the
the Egyptians. love of lucre is so strongly implanted in the human mind,
4. Necho, King of Egypt, in the year 610 B.C., endeathat this affection is oftentimes too apt to get the better of all
voured to solve the grand nautical problem of Africa. He other feelings, whether good or ill
. Hence, in the growing employed Phænician navigators to set sail from the Red spirit of trade and commerce, the monopoly long enjoyed Sea, which lay at the east of his dominions, and to explore by the Phænicians, and subsequently by other commercial towards the south. We are told that they spent three years nations, was protected by the publication of appalling in the voyage; and, as the ships of the ancients did not accounts of the dangers, distresses, and horrors, which admit much room for stowing away provisions, they dethey underwent; the dread of which, they hoped, would
barked at times on the coast, sowed grain, waited its ripendeter the sailors of other regions from disputing with them ing, reaped, prepared food, and again set sail. This they a claim to the wealth of the earth. In looking back, there
did in each year, being favoured with the maturing beams fore, through the vista of time, to the early condition of
of a tropical sun. At length, to their great joy and astonishthis world, and in studying the accounts thereof, as handed ment, they reached the Straits of Gibraltar, passed betweer. down from the heathen authors, who are our chief guides,
the pillars of Hercules, two rocks being the nearest and we must separate the probable from the improbable, and opposite points of the continents of Europe and Africa, the true from the false, and revolve in our minds the pro
and at length arrived safely at the shores of Egypt. gressive condition of mankind, as illustrating the moral
In the publication of this memorable voyage, the world government of the Almighty.
was astonished at being informed, that the sun, while the Phænicians were passing round the southern part of Africa,
was at their right hand; or, in other words, that it described VOYAGES RELATED IN ANCIENT HISTORY-FEARS OF
its course from East to West, in the northern heavens; or,
speaking still more simply, that it appeared at mid-day in The general correctness of the foregoing observations may
the north, contrary to their former experience. be estimated by an epitome, in the way of illustration, of
To an inhabitant of the equator, the sun will appear at the principal ancient voyages, with which history makes us
noon, during one half of the year, in the north ; during the acquainted. We may remark, in the highly coloured rest of the year, in the South. At the southern promontory menoirs of the times, that many things which were false
of Africa, or Cape of Good Hope, which is below the were credited then, and still later ; whereas, other things, its meridian in the north; and it is evident that the order
southern tropical line, the sun will always appear to attain which have been subsequently recognised as perfectly true, seemed at that time so startling to the conceptions of man
of their voyage would keep the coast on their right hand kind, that no credence was awarded to them. The accounts
continually, of the first and third voyages, which follow, are mainly
We are given to understand that the relation of this derived from the rhapsodies of the poets.
voyage was almost universally discredited among the an 1. In the thirteenth century B. C., Jason, accompanied by
* See Saturday Magazine, Vol. III., p. 116.
THE ANCIENT MARINERS.
cients, for the very reason which should have moved them to , pia; and therefore, they threatened Jambulus and his belief; namely, the appearance of the Sun in the North at companion with the severest punishments, in case they did mid-day.
not prosecute their voyage. When the season of the year 5. Darius, the son of Hystaspes, being the sovereign of came, the Ethiopians celebrated the festival of Purgation the vast Persian Empire, was influenced by that insatiable with most splendid sacrifices; and then, having crowned ambition which has distinguished all conquerors.
He each of them with garlands, they put Jambulus and his planned an expedition to India, about 510 B. C., in order companion on board the vessel that had been prepared for to conquer the country; but that he might not proceed them, and obliged them to put to sea. without knowing something of the nature of the coun They were four months tossed by the winds and waves, try he was about to attack, he fitted out a naval expe- before they arrived on the coast of the island to which they dition, which he placed under the command of Scylax, were bound; but at length they reached it safely. In its the Caryandæan, giving him orders to sail down the river form it is alınost round, being about five thousand stadia in Indus, into the Southern Ocean; then to return by steer-compass; containing about five hundred of our miles, if we ing westward, and to make the best discoveries he could, allow six hundred stadia to a degree. As soon as they as to the strength and riches of the countries on both sides came within sight of land, the people on the island crowded of the river, as also on the sea-coast. Scylax, in pursu- | to the shore, to behold them : and, when they landed, mulance of these instructions, passed down the Indus into titudes came from all quarters to gaze at and admire them, the Indian Ocean, and returned by the straits of Babel- wondering how they came thither; but treating them with mandel into the Red Sea, and landed on the Egyptian the utmost kindness and civility, and offering them, with coast, near the neck of land which we now call the Isthmus the greatest readiness, whatever their country afforded. of Suez. Scylax employed about thirty months in making “ These people differed not a little from other nations in this voyage ; and gave a favourable report to Darius con their appearance, as well as in their manner; for they were cerning the nature of the countries which he had seen. all; of a pretty equal size, each of them about four cubits, Accordingly, Darius fitted out a naval armament, which or six feet high. They bent and turned their bodies with was to co-operate with his army, in the subjugation of the such agility, that their bones seemed to our travellers as Indians; this attempt of Darius was successful; and flexible as the sinews of other people: their bodies were very opened the way for a more frequent intercourse between tender, notwithstanding which, they were so strong, that India and the nations bordering on the Mediterranean. The whatever they grasped could not be forced out of their hands. voyage of Scylax is believed to have been the first maritime On their heads, eye-brows, eye-lids, and on their chins, they expedition to India.
had hair; but the rest of their bodies was perfectly smooth. 6. The next attempt to sail round the continent of Africa They were handsome and well-shaped; only the holes in was that of Sataspes, a Persian nobleman, whom Xerxes their ears were much wider than those of other men, and had condemned to death, but whose sentence was commuted had fleshy protuberances in them. Their tongues were to the circumnavigation of Africa. He sailed from Egypt, very singular, being by nature somewhat divided, and cut in the year B. C. 480, through the straits of Gibraltar; and in their infancy to the very root, so that they seemed douthen southward. But, horror-struck at the mighty waves of ble, which enabled them to imitate the notes, and even the the Atlantic, those walls of water, which dashed upon the chattering of birds; and, if our travellers say true, they shores of the desert.-after beating about for some months, could discourse with two people at once. he returned home, and suffered according to his original
“This island is situated in a most excellent and moderate sentence.
climate, lying very near the Equator, so that the people The Persians were generally unacquainted with maritime are neither scorched with heat nor perished with cold; enaffairs, and therefore never made any advance in the naval joying at once, all the seasons, without any division, like art, worth describing; this accounts for the want of perse- ours, of Spring and Harvest. The days and nights there verance on the part of Sataspes and his crew. The Athe are always of equal length ; neither is there any shadow at nians had made great improvements in their war-shipping, noon-day, because the sun is directly in the zenith. They when the Persians attacked them during the reign of are learned in all sorts of sciences, especially in Astrology. Xerxes. These improvements related chiefly to the forma. They use eight-and-twenty particular letters, for the exprestion of decks over the rowers, whereon the men of war car sing what they mean, composed of seven characters, each ried on their operations without interfering with the rowers, of which is varied four ways. They live long, without ever and impeding ihe motions of the ship. This is believed to being sick, and commonly to one hundred and fifty years of have contributed greatly to the success of the Athenians
age. over the Persians, in their naval contlicts with that power. “ After Jambulus and his companion had continued in
7. In a collection of ancient voyages, published about one this island seven years, they were compelled to depart, as hundred and thirty years ago, there is a curious account of persons of a vicious life, and not to be broken of foreign the discovery of an island, about five or six hundred years customs. Their ship, therefore, being again fitted out for before Christ. There can be no doubt that this narrative them, and well furnished with provisions, they were conis founded in truth; but that it is made more important strained to put to sea; and, after continuing their voyage than it really was by exaggeration, and a love of the mar for above four months, they fell, at length, upon the sandy vellous. It is a translation from an ancient writer.
shallows of India, where his companion was drowned, and “ There was one Jambulus, who from his youth was ad himself was afterwards cast ashore near a certain village, dicted to learning : his father was a merchant; and, after and carried away by the inhabitants of the place to the his decease, the son applied himself, with great diligence, king, who was then at a city called Poly bothra, or Polimto the same profession. This man, travelling into Arabia, bothra, many days' journey distant from the sea; where he in order to purchase spices, was there taken prisoner, with was kindly received by that prince, who had a great love for all his company, by a party of robbers. At first, he and one the Grecians, and was studious in the liberal sciences. At of his companions were employed in keeping sheep; but | length, having obtained provision from the king, he first they were soon after carried off by the Ethiopians, inhabit sailed into Persia, and from thence safely arrived in ing the coast, who conveyed them into their own country, in Greece." order to serve a very extraordinary purpose. These Ethio It has been supposed by most commentators on the above pians had a custom, which had then subsisted six hundred account, that the main incidents are true; but, as was before years, and was originally derived from the direction of an observed, they have had a tinge of the mavellous imparted oracle, to expiate the sins of their nation once in an age, or to them. With respect to the island mentioned, some have generation, which with them comprehended the space of supposed it to be Sumatra,—others Borneo, -others again thirty years, by exposing two strangers, in the following Java,—while one writer has considered it to be one of the manner:
Maldive Islands. • They prepared a little vessel, well built, and extremely 8. About 500 years B.C. the Carthaginians fitted out two well equipped, with provisions for six months; on board of expeditions, for the sake of prosecuting discovery to the which the men were put, at a certain season of the year, north and to the south, after clearing the Herculean straits. with instructions to steer directly south, in order to arrive at Hanno commanded one fleet, and proceeded southward, a certain fortunate island, inhabited by a king and some along the coast of Africa; and Himilco steered northward, hospitable people, with whom they might live happily all along the Hiberian and Gallic shores. the rest of their days. The oracle declared, that if these Thase under Hanno, steered round by Mount Atlas, the men succeeded in their voyage, the country would enjoy pillar of heaven, and doubled “the African Forehead," as its rest and quiet for many years ; but if, frighted by the dan- great western promontory was called. By day the land gers of the sea, they should return, it was ominous to Ethio was too hot to walk upon, the country seemed to lie silent
and deserted, in the full unmitigated glare of a vertical figures of the gods appear visible, crowned with immortal sun, but by night the mountains seemed on fire, songs of light. By the latter observation we are to understand the rejoicing were heard, accompanied with the sounds of flutes, varied effects of the Aurora Borealis; ' by the former the drums, cymbals, and gongs, together with cries, which hollow noise of the rolling sea against the dreary shores of waked the shrill echoes of night, and startled the senses of Norway. He intimates, that, in going very far to the north, the Punic sailors. Scarcely different have been the records sea, land, and air, seemed all confused; owing perhaps to of modern travellers, respecting the inhabitants of these fogs :--and that the water was of such a dense character, as tropical wilds; who, fearing to be scorched by the solar ray, could hardly be cleaved by the ship's prow; alluding, per. pass the day in caverns, or in sylvan shades, and wake up haps, to the strong tides of those seas.' He is said to have into lively existence under the milder beams of the moon and | been the first who ascribed the tides to the influence of the stars. Here they saw the various species of the monkey- moon. The vulgar opinion, even up to the time of Mela, tribe, pre-eminent among which is the ourang-outang, - in the middle of the first century after Christ, was that the original of Satyrs. The Thessalians had, before this, earth was a huge animal, the heaving of whose breast occagiven rise to the fables of the Centaurs, by appearing to sioned the rise and fall of the waters. Another opinion was, their neighbours on horses, which they had been the first to that the ocean had within itself vast caves, into which the tame. In these places gold was found to be the universal water was regularly received, and out of which it was again metal; so common that the chains of captives were forged as regularly ejected. Previously to quitting the Mediterfrom it. The Carthaginians relate that the transactions which ranean, the tidal influence had not come under the considethey had with the people of the African coast were carried on ration of man. This sea scarcely indicates any perception in dumb-show, that, a signal having been made with smoke, of that lunar attraction, which operates upon the waters of the savages placed the goods which they had to dispose of on the earth generally. The probable reason is, that this sea, the coast and retired, and that the Carthaginians, having as also the Baltic, which admits of a parity of reasoning, is removed these goods, deposited an equivalent. If that almost entirely cut off from the main oceans; and that the which the latter laid down, did not satisfy the former, it was narrowness of the connecting straits does not allow the swell not removed until a suitable addition had been made. This of the great waters to be felt within the requisite time of sort of barter is the primeval state of commerce. They were the moon's passing the meridian. once astounded at the sight of sheets of flame, traversing 10. Before speaking of the naval exploits of Alexander the country and spreading in every direction down to the the Great, of Macedon, we may mention that Curtius gives sea-shore; a conflagration made by the natives to get rid a circumstantial account of a fire-ship, which was equipped of the dry and waste grass at the end of autumn. Such by the Tyrians, at the time their capital was besieged by were the causes of Africa being the reputed dwelling.place Alexander. Having selected one of the largest galleys they of the Gorgons, and other monstrous creations, springing possessed, they loaded it by the stern with stones and other from ignorant fear. Pliny tells us that this voyage was ballast, so that the prow became considerably elevated effected round the whole extent of the African continent. above the surface of the water. The whole of the vessel,
Himilco, we are told, sailed as far as Britain and Ireland, which was above water, was covered very thickly with sulthe great Western Islands. It is generally, and with great phur and other inflammable substances; which operation reason, believed that the Phænicians, and subsequently the being completed, advantage was taken of a wind favourable Carthaginians, traded to the south-western coasts and for the attempt, and all the sails being set, the crew, who, islands of Britain for tin. Hence, Cornwall and the Scilly in aid of the sails, used their oars also, directed it towards Isles were called by the ancients Cassiterides, or Tin-coun- the mole which Alexander had, with so much difficulty, tries, a term derived from the Phænician and Sanscrit. laboured to construct. When they had approached suffi
9. Pytheas, an illustrious navigator of antiquity, who ciently near to the destined object of destruction, the vessel flourished in France, at Marseilles, a colony from Greece, was set on fire, and the crew jumped into boats, which had about 400 years B.C., directed his course to the north followed for the purpose of receiving them. This project western parts of Europe. He reached Britain, then called completely succeeded, and Alexander was frustrated in his Al-fioun (Albion), or White-land, from the appearance of its attempt on Tyre at that period. This place he ultimately cliffs at a distance. He kept on sailing, we are told, towards subdued, and having no more land to conquer he sought the north, and arrived at Thule. This is supposed to have the waters. been Iceland. Or this place, as also of the other islands We now come to the voyage of Nearchus, the Macedoand coasts of this sea, he relates that he found, in some nian admiral, down the Indus, along the Erythrean Sea, and parts, the light of the setting sun continuing so strong, till up the Persian Gulf, as far as the mouth of the Tigris. dawn of day, that the stars could not venture to appear; in Alexander the Great, having made himself omnipotent by others he found the sun shining by day and night. This land, resolved to encroach, at least by his lieutenants, on account seems to have perplexed those who would other- the realms of ocean. He therefore set in motion an expediwise have been inclined to credit him; but this fact, related tion for maritime discovery. He sailed at the head of the by Pytheas, is quite natural during the middle of our sum- fleet down the Indus, and gazed upon the expanse of ocean, mer, when approaching towards the Arctic circle. The which the ancients deemed the circular boundary of the converse of this, the polar winter, or the effects of it, felt less world. The ocean had been held, from the oldest times, to in proportion to the diminution of latitude, may apply to be a river running round the earth; - which river was the account which we have of Ulysses, who, we read, sailed, bounded by the dark clouds of heaven. Such, we are told, perhaps at the fall of the year, to the ends of the ocean, was it depicted on the shield of Achilles, which seems to where the Cimmerians dwell in profound gloom, who see have presented on its surface, a map of the world, as then neither the rising nor setting sun, but have the veil of night known. That this notion was very aneient we learn from for ever spread over them. The credit of Pytheas was not the Sacred Writings ;-"When I made the cloud the garmuch improved by his accounts of the four and six-horned ment thereof, and thick darkness a swaddling-band for it." sheep on the shores of the Baltic; but modern information Job. XXXVIII. 9. The writer of the Book of Job probably attests the general accuracy of the Massilian sailor. Some lived nearly 2000 years before the birth of our Saviour, part of his story wears, at first sight, a fabulous aspect; when Christ. we find from Tacitus, who retails it from him, that the noise We find that Alexander, at sight of the crocodiles, for of the sun in its passage below the ocean is heard; and that the some time confounded the Indus with the Nile; owing pro
bably to the saying of Herodotus, that the Nile and the We ought to observe that the traditions, or records, of the Indus were the only rivers, in which the crocodile had been circuit of Africa, having been formerly made, were now seen. Having arrived at the mouth of the Indus, the becoming apocryphal; the geographers of the times having Grecian army was terribly alarmed at the sight of the huge decided that the regions to the south, or the torrid zone, and awful billows, which rolled in at the mouth of this river. were utterly uninhabitable, by reason of the extreme heat, They had perhaps never seen the ebb and flow of the tide while the regions to the north, forming the frigid zone, before : so that scarcely any officer of this vast and magni- were unapproachable, by reason of the intense cold. They ficent army could be got to head the further progress of this believed, theoretically, that there was another temperate enterprise; for all felt doubt and dismay at the sight of the zone, corresponding with their own, beyond the torrid; but ocean, whose breast heaving, in this part of the globe, with that this routhern temperate zone was completely severed higher tides than in most other seas, seemed to portend from the northern_by unendurable heat. Hence, in the celestial vengeance at their impiety in approaching the time of Mela and Ptolemy, it was believed that the ocean limit of the world. This horror had been increased by passed through Africa, and that the Nile rose in the southern finding, at break of day, their ships, which they had division, and, flowing under the sea, appeared again in anchored during night, left on dry ground by the ebb of the Upper Egypt. tide. When, however, Nearchus had accepted the com For some time all proceeded favourably, until the crew mand, and they had got out to sea, the first thing that of Eudoxus, fearing lest they should be swallowed up amid struck their attention was, that the sun being vertical at the heaving billows of the Atlantic, urged the vessel so noon day, they projected no shadow, and that upon occasion, close to the shore, that it was stranded on one of the it even deflected towards the south; that stars which they dangerous sand-banks abounding on the coast. A smaller had seen high up in the northern sky, now decreased in and more compact galley of fifty oars, was formed from the altitude, or sank altogether below the horizon; and that fragments of the stranded vessel ; in which ship he conothers, never visible before, now rose up in the south. As tinued to proceed southward, but was at last forced to Nearchus coasted along Gedrosia, now Beloochistan, his return, his resources not being equivalent to the end sailors saw, for the first time, the whale, spouting out proposed, after the disaster of the shipping. He is said to streams of water into the air, which, descending like a have made a second attempt, with the issue of which we whirlpool, so alarmed the sailors, that their navigation are not so well acquainted. He seems to have been set would have been at an end, had not Nearchus, by raising down as an impostor; and is reported to have told many the shouts of his men, and the din of trumpets, terrified and fables and other absurd stories of his voyages and advenscared down the monster of the deep. For a great part of tures. According to some, he really made the circuit of their voyage they found it difficult, or impossible, to procure Africa. Some nations he found dumb; which relation has corn, so that they were reduced to live upon fish; and, in it a stroke of probability, for, not understanding the worse than all, as these Greeks dolefully complained, on the language of foreigners, the natives might have thought it flesh of turtle, which abounded on the coast !
as well to be silent. 11. The voyages of Eudoxus now claim our attention. Of some people he related, we are told, that they had no He was a native of Cyzicus, who flourished about 130 years tongues, of others, that being mouthless, they received
He seems to have been an officer of fortune. Like their food up the nostrils. Some nations, we know, commany others, whose ardent minds have impelled them to i pletely cover up the lower parts of their faces; but the explore, and to relate, things strange and unheard of, he account of things originally true, though strange, becomes has been misrepresented and ridiculed by the geographers exaggerated and distorted by passing from one narrator to and critics of his time. There is a natural indisposition to another. In a word, this navigator seems, by common believe that which does not accord with one's own experience; consent, to have been more meritorious than fortunate. through which incredulity we are sometimes as liable to 12. When the Romans began, and continued to practise err, as by an unthinking confidence. Bruce, the celebrated navigation, it was to serve their purpose of conquest; but, traveller, at the end of the last century, who had related the to gratify their luxury, the extremities of the known circumstance, not unusual, of an Abyssinian cutting steaks world were ransacked, and thus maritime enterprise was from the flank of a cow, skewering up the wound, and then indirectly promoted. Their ships, when unemployed in driving her out to pasture, was thus satirized by the witty war, made a survey of the dominions which their power poet of the day :
had acquired. Thus, at the end of the first century of the Nor have I been where men--what lack, alas!
Christian era, Agricola, the gorernor of Britain, discovered Kill half a cow, and turn the rest to grass.
it to be an island by sailing round it. The opportunity of Eudoxus made several voyages down the Red Sea, and surveying the coasts of the Erythrean Sea was furnished towards the East, at the instigation, and with the aid of by the regular trading voyages, undertaken by the Alex Ptolemy Euergetes, king of Egypt, and his successor; but, andrian merchants from the north of the Red Sea down eager ió pursue the grand object of nautical honour, the into the Indian Ocean, which was the ancient Erythrean. circumnavigation of Africa, he seems to hare eschewed The merchant-vessels of the Roman empire seem to have royal patronage, and to have set out on his own account, navigated this sea to the right, as far south as the Isle of with the assistance of some friends whom he got to join him. I Madagascar; and to the left, as far as the coasts of
Malabar, of which Arrian, who flourished about A. D, 140, the time, and allows that if trees be cut down between the gives us an account, in his work called the Periplus, or 16th and the 23rd days of the moon, they will endure for a Circumnavigation. The general facts herein related do long time without perishing; but he adds that, if that not differ materially from those which have come under limitation be transgressed, the daily practice and experience modern observation; the people of the coast are little of all artisans may convince the world it would become changed in manners or living, their country has the same worm-eaten and rotten in an incredibly short space of appearance, and its productions are much the same as the time. Some supposed that the timber felled on the day of author of the Periplus alludes to.
the new moon was absolutely incorruptible; they were eren With regard to the form of the vessels, employed by the attentive to the quarter from whence the wind blew, and to Phænicians and other neighbouring nations, about the the season of the year; for instance, in the beginning of same period, it seems that those vessels intended for com Autumn it was deemed improper to fell timber for shipmercial purposes were without keels, and bore a certain building, except the wind was westerly, or, in the Winter, resemblance to the barges of the Hollanders at the present unless it blew from the north, day. They were flat-tloored, round, broad, drawing little water, and of very great breadth, in proportion to their
THE ROMANCE OF ANCIENT NAVIGATION, AS INDUCED length; so that they might be capable of containing a
BY THE DESIRE OF MONOPOLY IN TRADE. larger quantity of commodities than would be the case under any other form. Their floor-timbers were continuous; We must now say a few more words on the motives, which and, with the addition of one futtock only on each side are presumed to have led the Phænicians, and the subse(called by the Greeks encælia, meaning the ribs or internal quent mariners of antiquity, to the affectation of mystery parts of the animal body), the frame was completed. and horror, with which they were so wont to shroud all
Before the introduction of the keel, the framework of the their naval enterprises. The Phænicians, so celebrated for vessel was formed of timbers bent round, and kept in the commerce, and consequently for navigation, whose pilots curved form by beams passing across, to which the timbers manned the ships of the nations, and conducted the vessels were bolted; but as this was a laborious practice, the keel of Solomon over the Red Sea, the Persian Gulf, and the became introduced, by which the necessary shape of the Mediterranean, as far as Tarshish, “the silver country," frame was more easily ensured. The Latin word for keel are placed even by Homer in a most unfavourably moral is carina, from curro, to run, alluding to the mode in which light. Iniquity and deceit are their characteristics, both the keel runs or cuts through the water. The frame was in Sacred and Profane history. Hence the term “ Punic covered with planking; the planks being fastened to the faith," as applied to the Carthaginians, implied treachery. frame by large nails or bolts formed of iron, some of which The especial source, to which the equivocal conduct of the passed ihrough both plank and timber, and were clenched people of Tyre and Sidon may be traced up, is their desire at the end to render the fixture more complete. It has and endeavour to preserve to themselves exclusively the been ascertained, that the mode of dove-tailing, which is trade and commerce of the world; possessing, as they did, now so frequently applied in carpentry, was known in those the privilege of serving the Egyptian, and other nations, days; for when the planks were not long enough to reach whose religion deterred them from pursuing maritime from stem to stern of the vessel, they were joined end to enterprises. The people of Egypt had long ceased to end, the ends being dove-tailed into each other, by which cultivate the naval art; for they dreaded the sea, which they were prevented from starting out from their places. swallowed up their great divinity, the Nile. This river the
We may here notice, in addition to what was said in the Phænicians were never allowed to enter. In such sort did first article, a strange mode of attacking an enemy, as the Arabians, in after ages, become navigators for the adopted by Hannibal, in a war with Pontus; which was by Hindoos, who were superstitiously afraid of the sea. This throwing vessels filled with snakes on the enemies' decks. gave the Phænicians power, wealth, pleasure; in short, The ships of Pontus thought it strange to see potters' every advantage, whether for good or ill, which this world vessels hanging from the yard-arms of Hannibal's ships; furnishes. They were also the great slave-traders of the but when those same vessels were thrown on their own world. Having once attained to this pitch of envied disdecks, and snakes were perceived to crawl out of them, the tinction, they could not bear the idea of putting their coneffect produced was just what Hannibal had anticipated; venience in jeopardy, as they knew, or fancied, they must namely, that the uncommon event frightened and dismayed a do, if rivals competed with them in the foreign markets. brave people, who would not have shrunk from any of the This leads us to suspect the motives, which made Hiram, ordinary dangers of war. On other occasions, casks con the Tyrian monarch, sneer at the inland cities, given up to taining inflammable matter were hung from the projecting him by Solomon, The Phænicians wanted, doubtless, a head of the vessel ; and when the head was brought so as harbour for ships, such as that of Joppa. The keenness to be over the deck of the enemy's vessel, the casks were and activity of the Greeks was justly formidable to them. opened, and the inflammable matter shaken out, and pre- They therefore went upon a bullying system; and, like arrant cipitated upon the deck. Sometimes these casks were braggarts, told how they had met in various climes with placed on the ends of long poles, placed across or aslant the
The Cannibals, that did each other eat, deck.
The Anthropophagi, and men whose heads There seems reason to believe that the destructive
Do grow beneath their shoulders. purposes of war were more conducive to the improvement The Phænicians, with Tyre and Sidon as their two prin of ships than was the peaceful object of commerce : accord-cipal cities, engrossed, as has been before stated, by far the ingly, the strengthening and improvement of the timbers greater part of the commerce of the then known world: and other parts of a vessel became more and more an they brought the gold, and gems, and spices of the East object of attention, as nations became more and more from India, Persia, &c., to Tyre and Sidon, by caravans or involved with each other in political or warlike dissensions. land-carriage, and distributed them to the nations of the Experiments were made, and experience was appealed to, West by means of their shipping on the Mediterranean. as to the best kinds of wood for ship-building. The Phoe- From an early period, however, they thirsted" to gain posnicians, the Grecians, the Carthaginians, and the Romans, session of some port, which should give them a command successively directed their thoughts into this channel. The of the navigation of the Red Sea. This object, for a long fir was found to be the lightest, as well as the easiest to time, they could not attain; for the eastern shores of the work : the oak, on the other hand, though more difficult in Red Sea, or Arabian Gulf, were in the hands of the application, proved to be the strongest and the most durable. Arabians and Assyrians, while the western shores were in Besides these, the elm, the cedar, the cypress, the pitch the power of the Egyptians and Ethiopians. They therepine, the ilex (a species of oak), the ash, and even the fore strove to obtain possession of some port on the Medialder, were severally tried: the oak, the fir, and the pitch- terranean, near what is now called the Isthmus of Suez, in pine, were those in general use.
order that, by a land-carriage of a few miles, they might As the science advanced in general use and repute, connect together the navigation of the Mediterranean and practice and experience introduced certain maxims, some the Red Sea. This object they attained by gaining posof which were really found necessary, while others were session of Rhinocorura, a city on the boundary between whimsical and capricious. Hesiod, for example, informs Palestine and Egypt. By this plan they extended their us that it was deemed improper to fell any timber for the commerce to a vast extent, by making the Red Sea the purpose of ship-building, except on the 17th day of the channel of communication between Tyre and the eastern moon's age, because, it being then in the wane, the sap or countries, instead of transporting their commodities by land. internal moisture, which is the grand cause of early decay, The jealousy with which the Phænicians regarded any would be considerably lessened. Another writer extends ) attempt on the part of other nations to share with them