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"Before the town a virgin, bearing forth
Descending from the gate she sought the fount
From that pure fountain for the city's use."-IBID. 1. X. v. 105.
Pygres and Mantyes, natives of Pæonia, the government of which had become the object of their ambition, adopted the following artifice :-They decorated their sister, a person of great elegance and beauty, in the best manner they were able, and sent her to draw water. She had a vessel on her head, she led a horse by a bridle, fastened round her arm, and she was moreover spinning some thread. When she came to the river she gave her horse some water, and then filled her pitcher. Having done this, she returned by the way she came, with the pitcher of water on her head, the horse fastened by a bridle to her arm, and, as before, employed in spinning."-HDT. 1. v. c. 12.
This was done with a view to persuade Darius that all the women of the Pæonians were accustomed to labour.
Cheirisophus came to a village just as it was dark, and at a fountain without the walls, he found some women and girls who belonged to it carrying water."
XEN. Anab. 1. IV. c. 5.
"The vestal approached the waterside, bearing upon her head an earthen pitcher." Ov. Fast. 1. III. v. 13.
12. My father peradventure will feel me, and I shall seem to him as a deceiver; and I shall bring a curse upon me, and not a blessing.
"Their father's curse,
Fatally cruel, sweeps them both away."-ESCH. Sept. c. Theb. v. 819. 13. And his mother said unto him, Upon me be thy curse, my son: only obey my voice, and go fetch me them.
""Tis ever found that mothers
Plead for their sons, and in the father's wrath
TER. Heaut. Act v. sc. 4.
And he came near and kissed him: and he smelled the smell of his raiment, and blessed him, and said, See, the smell of my son is as the smell of a field which the Lord hath blessed:
"When after long continued drought the rain has soaked the ground, then it is that the earth exhales a divine odour that is so peculiarly its own, and to which, imparted to it by the sun, there is no perfume, however sweet, that can possibly be compared."
PLIN. Hist. nat. 1. XVII. c. 3.
46. And Rebekah said to Isaac, I am weary of my life because of the daughters of Heth: if Jacob take a wife of the daughters of Heth, such as these which are of the daughters of the land, what good shall my life do me?
"Thou, my child, I hear, art both joined in marriage, and hast the joys of love in a foreign family, and cherishest a foreign alliance: intolerable to this thy mother and to the aged Laius; the woe of a foreign marriage brought upon us."-EURIP. Phæniss. v. 337.
12. And he dreamed, and behold a ladder set up on the earth, and the top of it reached to heaven; and behold the angels of God ascending and descending on it.
The Greeks and Romans believed in the existence of a superior order of beings whom they called Dæmons; very different in their nature from those whom the Scriptures call angels. Hierocles says-" They have a superior and inferior part in them, and their superior part is an incorporeal substance, their inferior corporeal." They were supposed to be the guardians of mortal men, and especially of those who were distinguished for piety or virtue.
"The whole dæmon kind is partly divine and partly mortal. It interprets for and transmits to the gods what is sent from men, and for and to men what is sent from the gods; from men their petitions and sacrifices; from the gods their commands and returns for sacrifices; and being in the middle space between gods and men, it fills up the whole, so that by it all have been bound together into one."-PLAT. Sympos. c. 23.
"A good angel attends every man, who may be unceasingly the director of his life; but it is not to be believed that an evil genius also follows him to do him injury, for God desires that every one should be good."-MENAND. ap. Clement. Strom. 1. v.
Cassius, arguing with Brutus after he had seen the vision of his evil genius a short time before the battle of Philippi, says :
"It is improbable that there should be any such beings as dæmons or spirits, or that if there were such they should assume a human shape or voice, or have any power to affect us. At the same time I own I could wish there were such beings, that we might not rely on fleets or armies, but find the concurrence of the gods in this our sacred and glorious enterprise."-PLUT. Brutus, c. 37.
"No sooner are we come into the world than each of us hath two angels called dæmons, appointed to us to take the charge and oversight of our life."
IBID. de tranq. an. c. 15. 16. And Jacob awaked out of his sleep, and he said, Surely the Lord is
in this place; and I knew it not.
17. And he was afraid, and said, How dreadful is this place! this is none
other but the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven.
"Who is there who when he thinks that he is an object of divine care, does not feel an awe of the divine presence day and night?"-Cic. Quæst. Academ. c. 38. 18. And Jacob rose up early in the morning, and took the stone that he had put for his pillows, and set it up for a pillar, and poured oil upon the top of it.
19. And he called the name of that place Beth-el: but the name of that city was called Luz at the first.
The word Beth-el signifies "the house of God," and was the usual patriarchal name for altars and other sacred structures. Sanconiatho speaks of stones called Baitulia, which were contrived by Uranus, and which possessed the power of motion, as if they were instinct with life. They were in all probability sacred rocking stones similar to those erected by the Druids in this country. The worship of these stones consisted in anointing them with oil. The title bestowed by Jacob upon the place of his vision has been adopted into all languages, in spite of the utmost diversities of belief. The very syllables of Jacob's exclamation form the title of the chief sanctuary of the Mahommedan world-the BeitAllah of Mecca.
"The superstitious man, when he passes the consecrated stones, placed where three ways meet, is careful to pour oil from his cruet upon them; then, falling on his knees, he worships and retires."-THEOPHRAST. Charact. Xxx.
Apollonins Rhodius mentions a rocking-stone in the island Tenos, supposed to have been raised by Hercules over the tomb of Calais and Zetes.
"One still remains
Firm on its base; the other, lightly pois'd,
Is viewed by many a wondering eye, and moves
"Near Harpasa, a town of Asia, there stands a terrific rock, which may be moved by a single finger, but if it be pushed by the force of the whole body, it resists." PLIN. Hist. Nat. 1. II. c. 98.
See ch. XXXV. 14.
And Jacob vowed a vow, saying, If God will be with me, and will keep me in this way that I go, and will give me bread to eat, and raiment to put on,
21. So that I come again to my father's house in peace; then shall the Lord be my God:
"Nature asks for bread and water only. No one is so poor but he can answer this demand."-SENEC. Epist. 25.
"What call I, then, ENOUGH? What will afford
A decent habit and a frugal board;
What Epicurus' little garden bore;
And Socrates sufficient thought before.
These squared by nature's rules their blameless life :
Nature and wisdom never are at strife."-Juv. Sat. 1. XIV. v. 318.
And this stone, which I have set for a pillar, shall be God's house: and of all that thou shalt give me I will surely give the tenth unto thee. Nestor vows to Minerva :
9. And while he yet spake with them, Rachel came with her father's sheep; for she kept them.
Rachel signifies a sheep. It was the custom among the ancients to give the names of animals to their children; as, for instance, Dorcas, the roe, Porcius, Ovilius, Caprilius, Equilius, &c. The office of a shepherd was not considered to be of a menial character in those days.
"The divine swineherd."-HOм. Odyss. 1. XIv. 3. Melanthius the Goatherd
"to the feastful palace straight repaired, Familiar entered, and the banquet shared; Beneath Eurymachus, his patron lord,
He took his place, and plenty heap'd the board.”—IBID. 1. XVII. v. 255.
37. And Jacob took him rods of green poplar, and of the hazel and chestnut tree; and pilled white strakes in them, and made the white appear which was in the rods.
38. And he set the rods which he had pilled before the flocks in the gutters in the watering troughs when the flocks came to drink, that they should conceive when they came to drink.
39. And the flocks conceived before the rods, and brought forth cattle ringstraked, speckled, and spotted.
"Any change in the water or drink of sheep will render their offspring mottled." PLIN. Hist. nat. 1. VIII. c. 72.
"While the coupling is taking place, you must use the same water; if it is changed it will render the wool spotted, and injure the womb."-VARRO, de re rust. 1. 11. c. 2.
27. And he said unto him, What is thy name? And he said Jacob. 28. And he said, Thy name shall be called no more Jacob but Israel: for
as a prince hast thou power with God and with men, and hast prevailed.
"Among the Greeks additional names are given to some on account of their achievements, as Soter the preserver, and Callinicus the victorious; to others for something remarkable in their persons, as Physcon the gore-bellied, and Gripus the eagle-nosed ; or for their good qualities, as Euergetes the benefactor, and Philadelphus the kind brother; or for their good fortune, as Eudæmon the prosperous-a name given to the second prince of the family of the Batti. Several princes have also had satirical names bestowed upon them. Antigonus, for instance, was called Doson, the man that will give to-morrow; and Ptolemy was styled Lamyras, the buffoon.-PLUT. Coriolan. c. 11.
12. Ask me never so much dowry and gift, and I will give according as ye shall say unto me: but give me the damsel to wife.
It appears to have been customary for the parent to receive payment for his daughter when giving her in marriage, as is even now the case in some barbarous countries. Agamemnon, offering his three daughters to Achilles' choice, says:-
"Her let him choose whom most his eyes approve,
I ask no presents, no reward for love."-HOM. I. 1. IX. v. 146. "Iphidamus, the Thracian had given for his bride a hundred oxen, and had promised also a thousand sheep and goats."-IBID. 1 xI. v. 244.
"With gifts of price he sought and won the dame."-IBID. 1 Xvi. v. 178.. "Among the Assyrians this custom is observed every year. Such of the virgins as are marriageable are, at an appointed time and place, assembled together. Here the men
also come, and some public officer sells by auction the young women one by one, beginning with the most beautiful, taking it for granted that each man would marry the maid he purchased."—HDT. 1. I. c. 196.
"The Indians marry many wives, who are purchased from their parents, and give in exchange for them a yoke of oxen."-STRAB. 1. xv. c. 1.
"Among the Germans the wife tenders no dowry to the husband but the husband to the wife.-TAC. Germ. c 18.
2. Then Jacob said unto his household, and to all that were with him, Put away the strange gods that are among you, and be clean, and change your garments:
3. And let us arise, and go up to Beth-el; and I will make there an altar unto God, who answered me in the day of my distress, and was with me in the way which I went.
"Alcestis, when she perceived the destined day was come, washed her delicate skin with water from the river, and having taken from her closets of cedar, vesture and ornaments, she attired herself becomingly, and standing before the altar, prayed." EURIP. Alc. Act. I. v. 159.
"Approach ye pure, in spotless garbs array'd!
4. And they gave unto Jacob all the strange gods which were in their hand, and all their earrings which were in their ears; and Jacob hid them under the oak which was by Shechem.
These ear-rings, which had to be given up at the same time with the strange gods, were probably some kind of charms or amulets. See Hos. ii. 13, where Jerusalem is represented as having decked herself with the ear-rings of Baalim. Pliny mentions— "A marine plant, charito-blepharon, which is particularly efficacious in loveBracelets and necklaces are made of it."-PLIN. Hist. nat. 1. XIII. c. 52.
charms. 8. But Deborah Rebekah's nurse died, and she was buried beneath Bethel under an oak: and the name of it was called Allon-bachuth.
The nurse was always held in honour by the ancients.
Daughter of Ops, the just Pisenor's son,
Sole with Telemachus her service ends,
HOм. Odyss. 1. 1. v. 429.
The nurse of Hypsipile, the Queen of Lemnos, is introduced giving counsel in a public assembly, at which the Queen herself presides.