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X. The greater part of the country described above, as I was informed by the priests, (and my own observation induced me to be of the same opinion) has been a gradual acquisition "9 to the inhabitants. The country above Memphis, between the hills before mentioned, seems formerly to have been an arm of the sea, and is not unlike the region about Ilium, Teuthrania, Ephesus, and the plain of the Meander, if we may be allowed to compare small things with great. It must certainly be allowed, that none of the streams which water the above country, may in depth or in magnitude compare with any one of the five arms of the Nile *. I could mention other rivers, which,
temple is still left standing, surrounded with a pilastered gallery, and two columns in the portico!
19 Acquisition.]—This remark of Herodotus is confirmed by Arrian and by Pliny.-7. : * Herodotus first calls in this place this wonderful river by its popular name, the Nile. According to Shaw, the inhabitants pronounce it'short, Nil, and he assigns reasons for this being a contraction of Nahhal, that is, The River, by way of eminence. Abdollatif derives it from Nal, which siga nifies to give or to be liberal. This, says Shaw, is rather a fine thought than a just account of the real origin of the name.
The Nile is called by the Greeks Melas, that is Niger. We are told by Pausanias, that the image of the Nile was black, whilst those of all the other river gods were white. · The Ilindu name for the Nile is Cali, and in the Sanscrit language Cala signifies black. The following is from Lieu
though inferior to the Nile, have produced many wonderful effects; of these, the river Achelous 20 is by no means the least considerable. This flows through Acarnania, and, losing itself in the sea which washes the Echinades, has connected one half of those islands with the continent.
tenant Wilford's Dissertation on Ægypt and the Nile, from the ancient books of the Hindus :
By the Greeks, Romans, and Hebrews, the Nile, which is clearly a Sanscrit word, was known also by the following names:-Melas, Melo, Ægyptos Sihor or Sikhor, Nous or Nus, Aetos, Siris, Oceanus, Triton, Potamnos. See this Disa sertation in the Asiatic Researches, 8vo. ed. vol. iii. p. 304, where many curious particulars may be found on this subject.
Mr. Wilford thinks that Potamos is derived from the Sanscrit word padma, which he says is the nymphæa of Linnæus, and most certainly the Lotus of the Nile.
When Herodotus speaks of the length of Ægypt, he reckons from the Sebennitic mouth.-Larcher. : 20 Achelous.]--This river, from its violence and rapidity, was anciently called Thoas. Homer calls it the king of rivers. Its present name is Aspro Potamo. Hercules, by checking the inundations of this river by mounds, was said to have broken off one of his horns; whence the cornu-, copia.-T.
The sea and the continent may be considered as two great empires, whose places are fixed, but which sometimes dispute the possession of some of the smaller adjacent countries. Sometimes the sea is compelled to contract its limits by the mud and the sands which the rivers force along with them; sometimes these limits are extended by the action of the waters of the ocean.-Voyage du Jeune Anacharsis.
21 Echinades.]— These islands, according to the old Greek historians, are so close upon the coast of Elis, that many of them had been joined to it by means of the Achelous, which VOL. I.
XI. In Arabia, at no great distance from Ægypt, there is a long but narrow bay, diverging from the Erythrean Sea *, which I shall more mi
still continues to connect them with the continent, by the rubbish which that river deposits at its mouth, as I have had an opportunity of observing.-Wood on Homer.
; The above note from Wood I have introduced principally with a view of refuting his gross mistake. Achelous is a river of Acarnania, and the Echinades close to that coast, and distant from Elis a considerable space. No descent of earth from Achelous could possibly join them to any thing but the main land; whereas Elis is in the Peloponnese.-T.
* It is a very common thing to confound the Red Sea and the Erythrean Sea. The appellation of Red Sea should be confined to the Arabian Gulph. The Erythrean Sea is that ocean which stretches from the Straits of Babelmandel to India. It was so called from some king, whose name was Erythras. Erythras in Greek signifies red, and this is all we know about it.-T.
Unfortunately, says Dr. Vincent, modern scepticism has destroyed the credit of King Erythras. It is now an opinion generally received, that the Red Sea is the Idumæan Sea, or Gulph of Arabia, taking its name from Edom or Esau, the Arabian Patriarch, and Edom signifies red. The Arabians were doubtless the first navigators of the Indian Ocean, and as they entered that sea by passing the Straits of Babelmandel, they carried the name of the Red Sea, from whence they commenced their course to the utmost extent of their discoveries. Hence the Indian Ocean received the title of Red, and the Greeks, who translated every thing rather than introduce a foreign word, made it the Erythrean Sea. Not contentéd, however, with this, they usually found a god, a hero, or a king, whose name or story must be connected with the : derivation, and hence we have Erythras for the present purpose. See Vincent's Nearchus, p. 319.
nutely describe. Its extreme length, from the straits where it commences, to where it communicates with the main, will employ a bark with oars a voyage of forty days, but its breadth in the widest parts, may be sailed over in half a day. In this bay, the tide* daily ebbs and flows; and I conceive that Ægypt itself was a gulph formerly of similar appearance, and that, issuing from the Northern Ocean, it extended itself towards Æthiopia; in the same manner the Arabian one so described, rising in the south, flowed towards Syria ; and that the two were only separated from each other by a small neck of land. If the Nile should by any means have an issue into the Arabian gulph, in the course of twenty thousand years it might be totally choked up with earth brought there by the passage of the river. I am of opinion, that this might take place even within ten thousand years: why then might not a. gulpht
still * According to Arrian, the army of Alexander was overpowered with astonishment at seeing the effects of the tide at the mouth of the Indus. This seems rather remarkable, as this passage of Herodotus proves that the ebb and flow of the vide was a phenomenon neither unknown nor unobserved. See on this subject Dr. Vincent on the Voyage of Nearchus, p. 149.
+ Herodotus reasons thus :-If the Nile were admitted to flow into the Arabian Gulph, the residuum of mud would fill it up in twenty, or even in ten, thousand years. If the whole of Ægypt, therefore, were once a gulph, it is not unlikely that it should have been choked up with mud, in the indefinite period of ages before his time. This is no argument that such a gulph ever existed.
still greater than this be choked up with mud, . in the space of time which has passed before our age, by a stream so great and powerful as the Nile?
XII. All, therefore, that I heard from the natives concerning Ægypt, was confirmed by my own observations. I remarked also, that this country gains upon the region which it joins; that shells 22 are found upon the mountains; and
22 Shells.]— It is very certain that shells are found upour the mountains of Ægypt, but this by no nieans proves the existence of the Ægyptian gulph. Shells also are found upon mountains much higher than those of Ægypt, in Europe, Asia, and America. This only proves that all those regions have in part been covered by the waters of the sea, some at one time and some at another. I say in part, because it is certain, from the observation of the most skilful naturalists, that the highest mountains have not been covered with water. These, in the times of such general inundations, appeared like so many islands.—Larcher.
That the deluge was not universal, but to be understood as confined to the inhabitants of Palestine, was the opinion of many ancient writers, and in particular of Josephus : see his second book against Apion, where he speaks of Berosus. In confirmation of the above opinion of Josephus, I have somewhere seen the following verse from Genesis adduced. “And the dove came in unto him in the evening, and lo, in her mouth was an olive leaf pluckt off.” 'This, it has been urged, could not possibly be a leaf of an olive-trec which, for so great a length of time had been immersed in water, and probably buried under mud and other substances. Was it not, say they, gathered from some tree in the more elevated parts of Asia, to which the inundation of Noah had