A New System/Analysis of Ancient Mythology, by Jacob Bryant

That's French for "the ancient system," as in the ancient system of feudal privileges and the exercise of autocratic power over the peasants. The ancien regime never goes away, like vampires and dinosaur bones they are always hidden in the earth, exercising a mysterious influence. It is not paranoia to believe that the elites scheme against the common man. Inform yourself about their schemes here.

Re: A New System/Analysis of Ancient Mythology, by Jacob Bry

Postby admin » Mon Apr 11, 2022 6:13 am

Part 2 of 2

From some circumstances not well explained in the history of the Cuthite Shepherds, Josephus has been induced to think, that they were his ancestors; and that the account given by Manethon related entirely to the sojournment of the sons of Israel in Egypt. Sir John Marsham dissents from him; and with good reason: for the histories of the two people are repugnant, and can never be reconciled. Among other arguments, he takes notice, that the Israelites, when they came into Egypt, were in number but seventy; whereas the Shepherds were two hundred and 56 [Marsham's Chronol. Sec. 8. p. 101. and Sec. 12. p. 309. Herman Witsius refers the history of the Shepherds to Abraham. L. 3. p. 210.] forty thousand. The former were in a state of servitude, and grievously oppressed: but the latter exercised lordship; and made the whole land tributary. Add to this, that the Israelites were detained; and refused the leave, they sued for, to depart. The Shepherds would not go, till they were by force driven out of the country. These arguments alone are of such force, as to set aside the notions of Josephus. Had he not been blinded with too great zeal for his countrymen, the author, from whom he quotes, affords sufficient evidence to overturn his hypothesis. Manethon plainly specifies two sets of people, one of which succeeded to the other. The first were the Cuthite Shepherds from Babylonia: the second were the Israelites, who had the land given to them, which the former had deserted. This was the district of Auris, or Avaris; which the Cuthites had fortified, and in which they were finally besieged. After their departure, it was demolished by king Amosis, as we are informed by Apion: 57 [Tatianus Assyrius. p. 273. Clemens Alexand. Strom. L. i. p. 379. Euseb. Praep. L. 10. c. 11.] [x]. It was afterwards given to the Israelites by Amenophis, who is represented, as third inclusive from Amosis. 58 [Josephus contra Ap. L. i. p. 460.] [x]. "Upon the people being distressed, Amenophis granted them for an habitation, the city Avaris, which had been deserted by the Shepherds." It was not merely a city, but, as I have before mentioned, a walled province: for it contained no less than ten thousand square 59 [Josephus contra Ap. L. i. p. 446. See Observations upon the Ancient History of Egypt, p. 175. 177.] arourae. In this was a city Aur, [x], called Avaris, and Aouaris, [x], by the Grecians; the Cenafora of Mela, and other writers. Manethon particularizes the people, to whom this district was ceded; though he has in many respect sadly confounded their history. He says, that they were employed in acts of servitude, and greatly oppressed: but they were delivered, and formed into a republic, by one, who was their lawgiver, and whose name was 60 [[x]. Josephus cont. Ap. L. i. p. 461.] Moses. These data, though culled out of a deal of heterogeneous matter, are very clear, and determinate: and if learned men, instead of trying to adapt these plain facts to the flood of Ogyges, the aera of Argos, or the landing of Danaus in Greece, had chosen to abide by what is so evident and satisfactory, the history of Egypt would have been less obscure. But the Fathers, through whose hands we receive the greatest part of our knowledge, are all to a man misled by these notions: and the testimony of the best historians is set aside, because it does not agree with some preconceived opinion; being found either too much before, or after, the reign of Phoroneus, and Apis; or the landing of Cadmus the Phenician. In respect to the history of the Shepherds, the best writers have been greatly mistaken, by proceeding always upon extremes. They suppose, either that the people spoken of were solely the Israelites, which is the opinion of Josephus, and his adherents: or else that they were a people entirely of another race; and appropriate the history accordingly. But there is a medium to be observed: for it is certain that they were two separate bodies of people, who came at different times: and they are plainly distinguished by Manethon. Those, who are mentioned with Moses, are posterior to the others, and inhabited the very province, which the former had vacated. It is likewise mentioned by the same writer, that these second Shepherds were once under the rule of an 61 [Joseph. contra Ap. L. i. p. 460.] Heliopolitan, a person of great influence; who advised them not to reverence the sacred animals of the country, nor regard the Gods: nor to intermarry with the Egyptians; but to confine themselves to those of their own family. The name of this person was [x], Osarsiph. Now I am persuaded, that Osarsiph is nothing else but a mistake in arrangement for 62 [Sar is a Prince: and the term continually occurs in the history of Egypt, and of other countries: hence we read of Sar-chon, Sar-don or Sar-Adon, Sar-Apis, Sar-Apion, Sar-Adon-Pul; or Sardanapalus. The name of Sarah was the same as Hera, "Lady." See Vol. I. of this work., p. 73. It was sometimes expressed Zar. The captain of the guard to the King of Babylon was styled Nebo-Zar-Adon. 2 Kings, c. 25. v. 11. The feminine was Zarina. Diodorus Siculus mentions a Queen of the Sacae, called [x], Zarina; which undoubtedly was not a proper name, but a title. See Diod. L. 2. p. 119.] Sar-Osiph, the Lord Osiph, by which, no doubt, is meant Joseph of the Scriptures. Manethon has to be sure greatly confused the account; and at the close says, that Osarsiph at last changed his name to Moses: by which means he would make them appear as the same person. He has likewise interspersed much foreign matter; and is guilty of gross anachronisms: notwithstanding which, he affords sufficient light to ascertain the history of the two people. And in respect to the Israelitish Shepherds, we may be assured, that by Sar-Osiph they were introduced into Egypt; and that they were led out of it by Moses. Joseph was the cause of great wealth, and plenty to the Egyptians; and was accordingly esteemed a great benefactor. They likewise looked upon him as a revealer of hidden mysteries, a discloser of the will of the Gods. In consequence of this, they styled him Hermes, which signifies an interpreter. Hence came [x], and [x], among the Greeks. There is a remarkable account of this Hermes in the Chronicon Paschale, and Cedrenus, which is worthy to be mentioned. 63 [[x]. Chronicon Patch. p. 44. 45. Cedrenus. p. 18. I have omitted a deal of extraneous matter: for these authors have strangely perplexed this curious history. They imagine Hermes to have been the same as Faunus the son of Jupiter: and suppose that he reigned after Picus in Italy, though in the same page Cedrenus tells us, that he succeeded Mizraim in Egypt. [x]. "Mizraim the son of Ham, who was king of the country, dying, Hermes was elected in his room." See Cedrenus. p. 18. He is placed in the reign of Sesostris: [x]. Cedrenus. p. 20.] It is said of him, that "he was envied by his brethren, who are represented as seventy in number." That "finding, they were continually laying snares for him, and consulting how they might destroy him, he went into Egypt, [x], to the sons of Ham, where he was received with great honour. Here he resided in much state, being superior to every body: and he was cloathed with a particular robe of gold. He proved himself in many instances to be both a philosopher and a prophet; and foretold many things, being by nature nobly endowed. They therefore reverenced him as a Deity; and conferred upon him the name of Hermes, on account of his prophecies, and for having interpreted to them those oracles, which they had received from heaven. And as he had been the cause of great riches to their nation, they styled him the dispenser of wealth; and esteemed him the God of gain. When he came into Egypt, Mizram the don of Ham reigned there." This account is very curious; and seems to have been taken from some ancient Egyptian history. It is, as I have observed in respect to other national records, in some measure perverted, and obscured: yet the outlines are plain; and even in the mistakes we may see allusions to true history, however misapplied. The Egyptians acknowledged two personages under the titles of Hermes, and of Thoth. The first was the most ancient of the 64 [Euseb. Praep. L. i. c. 10. p. 32.] Gods, and the head of all. The other was styled the second Hermes; and likewise for excellence called [x], Trismegistus. There are histories given of this Hermes Trismegistus, which will be found to accord very much with those of the Hermes mentioned above: and his real name will appear to be very similar to Osarsiph, of whom we have before treated. This person is said to have been a great adept in mysterious knowledge; and an interpreter of the will of the Gods. He particularly decyphered all that was written in the sacred 65 [Manethon apud Syncell. p. 40. AElian mentions [x]. Var. Hist. L. 14. p. 399.] language upon the obelisks in Terra Seriadica: and instructed the Egyptians in many useful arts. He was a great prophet; and on that account was looked upon as a 66 [Clemens Alexand. Strom. L. i. p. 399.] divinity, To him they ascribed the reformation of the Egyptian 67 [Hermes by Censorinus is styled Arminus. Annum AEgyptiacum novissime Arminon ad duodecim menses et dies quinque perduxisse (serunt). (Google translate: Arminus. Last Egyptian Year Arminon prolonged twelve months and five days.) c. 19. p. 103. So corrected by Scaliger.] year: and there were many 68 [Clemens supra. Jamblichus. sect. 8. c. i.] books either written by him, or concerning him, which were preserved by the Egyptians in the most sacred recesses of their temples, and held in high esteem. We are 69 [Eratosthenes apud Syncellum. (Google translate: Eratosthenes in Syncellus) [x]. p. 124. supposed to have been a king.] told, that the true name of this Hermes, was Siphoas, We have here, I think, an instance of the same confusion of elements, as was observed in Osarsiph. For what is Siphoas but Aosiph misplaced? And is not Aosiph the Egyptian name of the Patriarch, who was called [x] by the Hebrews?

The names of those Shepherd kings, who are said to have reigned in Egypt, are transmitted to us by Manethon, Africanus, and Syncellus. But these authors differ greatly both in respect to the names themselves, and to the years, which the 70 [See Marsham's Chron. Saec. S. p. 100.] kings reigned. The first of them is by Manethon called Salatis; but by Africanus, and Eusebius, the name is rendered Saitis. From hence, I think, we may be assured, that Salatis is a mistake, and transposition for 71 [[x]. Euseb. Chron. p. 16. Syncellus. p. 61. I am obliged to differ from what I have said in a former treatise, p. 318.] Al-Sa-itis, or Al-Sait: which was not a proper name, but a title of the prince, and related to the country, which he governed. Sait was one of the ancient names of Upper Egypt: whence the colonies, which went from thence, were called 72 [[x]. Diodor. L. i. p. 24.] Saitae: and that region has the name of 73 [Leo Africanus. L. 8.] Said at this 74 [In the Arabic version, the land of Goshen is rendered Sadir.] day. Saitis therefore, and Al-Saitis, signify the Saite Prince, and are both the same title. The names of the other kings seem to be equally exceptionable.

The Shepherds are said to have resided in Egypt five hundred and eleven years. But the total of the reigns of those, who are specified, amounts only to two hundred and sixty-nine, if we may credit Manethon, and Syncellus: though, Africanus makes them two hundred and eighty-four. According to Eusebius, they amounted only to one 75 [Regnaverunt Pastores annis centum tribus. (Google translate: The shepherds reigned one hundred and three years.) Euseb. Chron. Versio Lat. p. 12. According to the old Chronicle, they reigned two hundred and seventeen years. Syncellus. p. 51.] hundred and three. I take therefore for granted, that the five hundred and eleven years relate to the Israelitish, as well as to the Cuthite Shepherds; and that the residence of both people is comprehended in that term: for the accounts of them are certainly blended. And as the one did not succeed to the other immediately, that interval also is taken into the computation. This estimate upon examination will be found to agree with all the circumstances of history; and will serve for a clue to ascertain other events. The children of Israel were two hundred and sixteen years in Egypt: and Joseph had been there 76 [Joseph was carried into Egypt, when he was seventeen years old. Genesis. c. 37. v. 2. He was thirty years old, when he first stood before Pharaoh. Gen. c. 41. v. 46. He saw seven years of plenty, and two of famine: so that when he invited his brethren into Egypt, he had resided 21 years complete.] twenty-one years, when he introduced his brethren into that country. These amount together to two hundred and thirty-six years. The years of the former Shepherds, according to Manethon and Syncellus, were two hundred and sixty-nine: which, added to the above, amount to four hundred and ninety-five years. These fall short of five hundred and eleven just sixteen years; which I imagine to have been the interval between the departure of the Cuthites, and the arrival of 77 [The first Shepherds resided: 259 years; Between their departure and the coming of Joseph: 16 years; Joseph resided before the arrival of his brethren 21 years complete: 21; The Israelitish Shepherds were in Egypt: 215 years; Total = 511 years.] Joseph.[!!!] But if the numbers of 78 [284: The time of the first Shepherds, according to Africanus; 215: The time of the Israelites; Total = 499: This subtracted from 511, leaves only twelve years. By this estimate the first Shepherds left Egypt twelve years, before the others arrived.] Africanus be true, those added to the years of the Israelitiish Shepherds make four hundred and ninety-nine, and leave an interval of twelve years only. According to this computation, the Cuthites left the country after Joseph had been in Egypt some time, and only twelve years before the arrival of his brethren. I should think the former computation the nearest to the truth: though we may either way account for the land of Goshen lying vacant; and for the city Avaris being 79 [We find that it was converted to pasture ground, and possessed merely by some herdsmen. Genesis. c. 47. v. 6.] unoccupied.
Joseph therefore tells his brethren, that they must say to Pharaoh, that they were shepherds; because he foresaw, that they would then be entitled to the best of the land of Egypt. This was Goshen, called from the late inhabitants Tabir Cushan; and in aftertimes the Arabian nome. In conformity to this the province is by Bar-Bahlul, the Syriac Lexicographer, rendered Cushatha, as having been the ancient Cuthite region. It lay in the region of Heliopolis, the Zoan of the Scriptures, at the extreme part of Delta; between the mountain of Arabia to the east, and the plain of the pyramids west ward. The city Avaris seems to have been rebuilt, and to have been called Cush-Aur, and Cer-Cushaur; the Cercasora of 80 [Nilus juxta Cercasorum oppidum triplex esse incipit. (Google translate: The Nile begins to be a threefold town near Cercasi.) Mela. L. i. c. 9. p. 51.] Mela, and Herodotus. Cer-Cushora signifies the city of the Cushan-Oritae.

The sons of Chus seem to have come into Egypt immediately after their dispersion from Babel. And as their arrival was five hundred and eleven years before the Exodus, this will carry us in computation as far back as to the time of Terah; and to the sixth year before the birth of Abraham. About this time, I imagine, was the confusion of speech, and the dispersion abovementioned. If then we recapitulate the great occurrences of the first ages, as they have been transmitted to us both by sacred and profane historians; we shall find that they happened in the following manner, and order. When there was a great increase of mankind, it was thought proper, that they should separate, and retire to their several departments. Their destination was by divine appointment: and there was accordingly a regular migration of families from Araratia in Armenia. The sons of Chus seem to have gone off in a disorderly manner: and having for a long time roved eastward, they at last changed their direction, and came to the plains of Shinar. Here they seized upon the particular region, which had fallen to the lot of Assur. He was therefore obliged to retreat; and to betake himself to the higher regions of Mesopotamia. In process of time the Cuthites seem to have increased greatly in strength, and numbers; and to have formed a plan for a mighty empire. People of other families flocked in unto them: and many of the line of Shem put themselves under their dominion. They were probably captivated with their plausible refinements in religion; and no less seduced by their ingenuity, and by the arts, which they introduced. For they must certainly be esteemed great in science, if we consider the times, in which they lived. The tower of Babel, which their imperious leader had erected, seems to have been both a temple, and landmark, from which they had formed a resolution never to recede. It therefore seemed good to divine Providence to put a stop to this growing confederacy: and, as they had refused to retire regularly, to force them by judgments to flee away, and to scatter them into different parts. The Ethnic writers, as I have before mentioned, speak of many fearful events, which attended the dispersion; particularly of earthquakes, and hurricanes, and fiery meteors, which the apostates could not withstand. Many of the sacred writers, though they do not speak determinately, yet seem to allude to some violent, and preternatural commotions, which happened at this season. Whatever may have been the nature of the catastrophe, it appears to have been confined solely to the region of Babylonia.

Upon the dispersion, the country about Babel was intirely evacuated. A very large body of the fugitives betook themselves to Egypt, and are commemorated under the name of the Shepherds. Some of them went no farther than 81 [It gave name to the whole region, of which Babylonia was only a part.] Shinar; a city, which lay between Nineve and Babylon, to the north of the region, which they had quitted. Others came into Syria, and Canaan; and into the Arabian provinces, which bordered upon these countries. Those, who fled to Shinar, resided there some time: but being in the vicinity of Elam and Nineve, they raised the jealousy of the sons of Amur, and the Elamites; who made a confederacy against them, and after a dispute of some time drove them from their neighbourhood. And not contented with this, they carried their arms still farther; and invaded all those of the line of Ham westward, as far as the confines of Egypt. This was the first part of the great Titanic war, in which the king of Elam was principal. We are informed by Moses, that they served him twelve years; and in the thirteenth they rebelled: and in the fourteenth year the king of Elam attacked them, in conjunction with the kings of Aram, Ashur, and Shinar: for Shinar was now regained, and in the hands of the Shemites.

This invasion happened, when Abraham had resided some time in Canaan; in which he first sojourned, when he was seventy-five years old. It happened also after his return from Egypt; but was antecedent to the birth of Ishmael, who was born in the eighty-sixth year of Abraham's life. We may therefore venture to refer this event to the eightieth year of the Patriarch's age. And as the first war is said by the Gentile writers to have lasted ten or 82 [[x]. Hesiod. Theog. v. 636. [x]. Apollod. L. 1. p. 4.] eleven years; if we add these to the fourteen mentioned by Moses, which intervened between that war, and the invasion made by the confederates, it will be found to amount to twenty-four years. And these being deducted from the eightieth year of Abraham, will give us the sixty-sixth of his life, and the first year of the Titanian war. At this time, or near it, I should imagine that it commenced. I have supposed, that the Cuthite Shepherds came into Egypt immediately upon the dispersion: and it is very plain from Manethon, that their coming was five hundred and eleven years before the Exodus. The call of 83 [Abraham was seventy-five years old, when he left Haran; and eighty-six at the birth of Ishmael.] Abraham was only four hundred and thirty, and his birth five hundred and five, years before that aera: therefore the dispersion must have been about six years prior to his birth. According to this computation, the first Titanian war was about sixty-two years after the dispersion. 84 [Euseb. Praep. Evang. L. 9. c. 15. Syncellus. p. 44.] Abydenus, 85 [P. 29. [x].] Cedrenus, and other writers, who take notice of the dispersion, mention this war as the next great event.

As the Cuthite Shepherds were in possession of Egypt at the time of this war; it may seem extraordinary, that they did not take a share in it, and assist those of their family, who were invaded. There is an obscure tradition of their being solicited to interfere: but as they were not themselves attacked, nor injured, they did not listen to the proposals. This is intimated in a history given of Oceanus, who was one of the 86 [Diodorus. L. 3. p. 195.] Titans. It is also a name of the Nile, which was called both 87 [[x]. Ibid. p. 17.] Oceanus, and AEgyptus: and in this account, that country, and its inhabitants are alluded to. The history is, that, 88 [[x]. Proclus In Timaeum Platonis. 4. p. 296.] when the Titans entered into a conspiracy against their father, Oceanus withstood the solicitations, which were made to him: though he was some time in doubt, whether he should not take a part in the commotion. Proclus, who gives this account, has preserved some Orphic fragments to this purpose. The same is to be found in Apollodorus; who mentions the Titans engaging in war, and says, that Oceanus would not join them. 89 [L. i. p. 2.] [x]. By Oceanus is meant in the language of mythology the Oceanitae and Nilotae, the inhabitants of Egypt.

I imagine, that the Canaanites had been in the same original rebellion in Babylonia, as the sons of Chus; and that they were a part of the dispersion. It is therefore probable, that they came into Canaan about the same time that the others betook themselves to Egypt. This is certain, that when Abraham traversed the country, it is repeatedly said, that 90 [Genesis. c. 12. v. 6. c. 13. v. 7.] "the Canaanite was then in the land:" from whence we may infer, that they were but lately come. And the sacred writer, speaking of Hebron, a seat of the Anakim, or Titans, says, that it "was built seven years before 91 [Numbers, c. 13. v. 22. Some have thought, that Zoan was Tanis, towards the bottom of Lower Egypt, and it is so rendered in the Vulgate. But this part of the country, called afterwards Delta, was not formed, when Hebron was built. The lower region of Delta increased gradually, and was the work of time. Zoan was Heliopolis, one of the first cities built by the Shepherds, and towards the apex of Delta.] Zoan in Egypt." By this we may infer, that the two nations in some degree corresponded in their operations, and began building about the same time. All the while, that the Patriarch sojourned in this country, we find it so thinly peopled, that he could pass where he listed, and pitch his tent, where he pleased: and yet he travelled with a large retinue, and with flocks and herds in abundance. All this seems to indicate a recent population. Syria, and the coast from Libanus upwards, had been peopled by a different family before: and it is probable, that those of the confederacy, who settled there, had some battles with the natives. Eusebius accordingly mentions, "that in early times the Chaldeans," by whom are meant the Babylonians, "made war upon the people of Phenicia." 92 [Euseb. Chron. p. 28. Syncellus. p. 153.] [x]. But the land, which the Canaanite invaded, was in great measure vacant, and had been set apart for another people. For the distribution of the whole earth was by divine appointment; and the land of Canaan was particularly allotted to the sons of Israel. They accordingly have this strongly inculcated to them, that in the division of countries, 93 [Deuteron. c. 32. v. 9.] "the Lord's portion is his people; Jacob is the lot of his inheritance." The Son of Sirach also informs us to the same purpose; that 94 [C. 17. v. 17.] "in the division of the nations of the whole earthy He" (the Lord) "set a ruler over every people; but Israel is the Lord's portion." In conformity to this, the Psalmist introduces the Deity as telling Abraham, 95 [Psalm. 105. v. 11.] "Unto, thee will I give the land of Canaan, the lot," or line, "of your inheritance:" which circumstance had been before recorded by 96 [Genesis. c. 13. v. 15. c. 15. v. 18.] Moses. And yet even to him, and to his posterity, it was rather a loan than a gift: for the Deity seems always to have peculiarly reserved the property of this country to himself. The Israelite therefore had never a full command of it: he only held it at will, and was subject to God as proprietor. In short it was ever the Lord's portion. The people therefore are told, when a permission is given to them in some degree to part with their inheritance, 97 [Numbers, c. 25. v. 23.] "The land shall not be sold for EVER: for the land is mine: and ye are strangers and sojourners with me," saith the Lord. Indeed the whole earth may justly be called the Lord's: but this was his particular portion. It was however invaded, as were other places, in opposition to the divine appointment. Eusebius, in conformity to this tells us, that Noah explained to his sons the will of the Deity; and allotted to each their particular place of retreat, 98 [Chron. p. 10.] [x], "having received his instructions from Heaven." But the sons of Chus first usurped the region allotted to Ashur; and afterwards transgressed still farther upon the property of their neighbours. Of all others the transgression of Canaan was the most heinous; for he knowingly invaded God's peculiar 99 [[x]. Auctor Anon. Johan. Malalae praesixus, p. 16.] portion; and seized it to himself. The trespasses of the sons of Ham brought on the dispersion; and afterwards the war of the confederates, as Syncellus justly observes. 100 [P. 90.] [x]. "The sons of Shem made war upon the sons of Ham about the boundaries of Palaestina." Eusebius mentions the particular transgression of the Canaanite. 1 [Euseb. Chron. p. 10. Eusebius lived in the country, of which he speaks: and had opportunities of obtaining many curious histories from the original inhabitants. See also Epiphanius adverf. Haeref. L. i. c. 5.] [x]. "Canaan, the son of Ham, was guilty of innovation, and trespassed upon the allotment of Shem; and took up his habitation therein, contrary to the commandment of Noah." Besides the kings in the Asphaltite vale, the nations attacked in this war were the 2 [Genesis. c. 14. v. 5. [x]. So rendered by the Seventy. See Deuteron. c. 2. v. 10. 11. also v. 21. 22.] Rephaims, or Giants, in Ashteroth Karnaim; and the Zuzims, and Emims, who were equally of the Titanic race: also the Amorites, and Amalekites, and the Horim in Mount Seir. All these were upon forbidden ground; and were therefore invaded.

Such is the history of the Titanic war, and of the dispersion, which preceded. Sanchoniathon speaking of the people, who were thus dissipated, and of the great works, which they performed concludes with this short, but remarkable character of them, 3 [Sanchoniathon apud Euseb. Praep. L. i. p. 35. So Pelasgus [x]. Cadmus [x]. Terah, and Nahor, and all the sons of Heber had separated themselves from the stock of their fathers, and dwelt in a forbidden land. Here they served other Gods. But the faith of Abraham was at last awakened; to which perhaps nothing contributed more than the demolition of the tower of Babel, and the dispersion of the sons of Chus: and lastly, the wonderful and tremendous interposition of the Deity in producing; producing these effects. This event not only inspired them with an inclination to get away, but also afforded them an opening for a retreat. It is, I think, plain, that even the Chaldeans were not included in the people dispersed; as we find such a nation in the days of Abraham; and not only in his time, but in the days of his father and grandfather. Both Terah and Nahor dwelled in the land of Ur of the Chusdim: which could not have happened, if those Chusdim, or Cuthites, had been scattered abroad.] [x]. "These are the people, who are described as exiles and wanderers, and at the same time are called the Titans." This event seems to have been very happy in its consequences to those of the family of the Patriarch Abraham: as it must have facilitated their conversion; and given them an opening to retreat. They lived in the land of Ur of the Chaldees; which lay upon the Tigris, to the south of Babel and Babylonia. There was no passage for them to get away, but through the above country; which was then possessed by a people, who would not have suffered their desertion. Nor would they have thought of migrating, so long as they followed the religion of their fathers. But when Terah and his family had seen the tower shaken to its foundations, and the land made a desert; it was natural for them to obey the first call of Heaven; and to depart through the opening, which Providence had made. They therefore acceded to the advice of Abraham; and followed him to Haran in Mesopotamia, in his way to Canaan. The rout, which the Patriarch took, was the true way to the country, whither he was going: a circumstance, which has been little considered.

After the Cuthite Shepherds had been in possession of Egypt about two hundred and sixty, or eighty years, they were obliged to retire. They had been defeated by Halisphragmuthosis; and were at last besieged in the district of 4 [Josephus contra Ap. L. i. p. 446.] Avaris, which they had previously fortified, by 5 [By some he is called Thummosis.] Amosis, the son of the former king. Wearied out by the length and straitness of the siege, they at last came to terms of composition; and agreed to leave the country, if they might do it unmolested. They were permitted to depart; and accordingly retired to the amount of two hundred and forty thousand persons. Amosis upon this destroyed their fortifications, and laid their city in ruins. Manethon, who has mixed their history with that of the Israelites, supposes, that they settled at Jerusalem, and in the region round about. This has led Josephus to think, that the first Shepherds were his ancestors: whereas their history is plainly alluded to in that part, which is styled the return of the Shepherds: where Osarsiph is mentioned as their ruler; and Moses, as their conductor upon their retreat. Most of the fathers, who treat of this subject, have given into this mistake: and as the Cuthites were expelled by Amosis, they have supposed, that the Israelites departed in the reign of that king. This was the 6 [[x]. Euseb. Praep. L. 10. p. 493. See Tatianus. p. 273. Clemens. Strom. L. 1. p. 379. Justin. Martyr. Cohort, p. 13. He calls the king, Amasis. They have certainly made some alterations in the 18th dynasty, to make it accord to their notions.] opinion of Tatianus, Clemens, Syncellus, and many others: but it is certainly a mistake: for it was not till the time of 7 [He gave them the place called Avaris, which his grandfather had laid waste. Joseph. cont. Ap. L. i. p. 460.] Amenophis, succestor to this 8 [The list of the kings of this aera, as they give them, proves this. [x]. See Syncellus, Eusebius, &c.] prince, that they entered the country, which they did not quit till after two centuries. And however Manethon may have confounded the history; yet it is apparent from what he says, even as the Fathers quote him. For he tells us, that Amosis destroyed the seat of the former people; and Amenophis gave it to the 9 [Josephus cont. Ap. L. i. p. 460, 461.] latter: so that the history thus far is certainly very 10 [Eusebius, whose evidence Syncellus without reason rejects, places the exit of the latter Shepherds in the reign of another king, whom he calls Cencheres. Chron. p. 16. Syncellus. p. 72.] plain. As they were each a very large body of people, and their history of great consequence in the annals of Egypt; their departure must have been faithfully recorded. But length of time has impaired the memorials: so that the history is of a mixed nature; and it is not easy to arrive at precision. And as many events were prior to the reigns of any of their kings; they generally refer those to the times of their Gods. Eusebius gives us a curious account of an event in the time of Apis; 11 [[x]. Euseb. Chron. p. 26.] "when a large body of men deserted Egypt, and took up their abode in Palaestina, upon the confines of Arabia." The Israelites may possibly be here alluded to: but I should rather think, that the history relates to the Caphtorim, who seem to have resided between Mount Casius and Pelusium; but retired to Palaestina Propria, which was immediately upon the borders of Arabia. There are however other histories more precise, which manifestly allude to the departure of the Shepherds from Egypt; and point out the places, to which they retired. There was a tradition of Casus and Belus leading one colony to 12 [Eusebii Chron. p. 24. See Zonaras. p. 21.] Syria, which settled upon the Orontes. By Casus and Belus are undoubtedly meant the Cuthites and Beleidae of Babylonia, who fled from Egypt; and are said by Manethon to have retired to those parts. Some are said to have gone to 13 [Joseph. cont. Apion. L. i. p. 460.] Jerusalem; which history needs no explanation. Eusebius mentions, that 14 [Chron. p. 27.] Cadmus and Phoenix resided in Egypt; but afterwards passed over to the region about Tyre and Sidon, and were for a time kings of that country. The most plain and satisfactory account is that, which I have more than once mentioned from Diodorus. He tells us, that there were formerly in Egypt many 15 [L. 40. apud Photium. p. 1151.] foreigners, whom the Egyptians expelled their country. One part of them went under the conduct of Danaus and Cadmus to Greece: and the others retired into the province called in aftertimes Judea. But it was not only to Syria, and to Greece, that people of this family betook themselves. I have 16 [See Vol. II. of this work, and the treatise inscribed Cadmus: which is intimately connected with the whole of the present subject.] shewn, that they were to be found in various parts, widely separated, as far as India and the Ganges in the east; and Mauritania westward. Diodorus mentions Ammon, by which is meant the Ammonians, reigning in a part of 17 [[x]. Diodor. L. 3. p. 201.] Libya: and speaks likewise of the Titans of 18 [L. 3. p. 190.] Mauritania, whom he styles the sons of Heaven. The Grecians supposed, that they were conducted to this region by [x], "Cadmus the great rover:" and Nonnus mentions:

19 [Dionus. L. 13. p. 370.]
People, who dwelt amid the Atlantian cliffs,
In cities founded by the wandering chief.

They came also with the Curetes into Crete; and settled particularly about Cnossus, where they were of the greatest benefit to the natives; and improved them in architecture, and in various other arts. Diodorus speaks of the temple of Rhea in these parts, which was built by the Titans, the sons of Heaven; whose foundations were shewn in his days: and near it was a venerable grove of cypress, planted in early times. He mentions the names of many of the Titans: and says, that there was not one, 20 [L. 5. p. 334. [x].] who had not been the author of some useful art to mankind.

The calamities, which this people experienced, were so severe, and accumulated, that they were held in remembrance for ages. The memorials of them made a principal part in their sacred 21 [See Orph. Argonautica. v. 26. 31. &c. Philostratus, Vita Apollon. L. 3. c. 6.] rites; and they preserved them also in their hymns. These were generally in a melancholy style; and their musick was adapted to them. The chief subject was the history of the Titanic age, the sufferings of their Gods; and above all the flight of Bacchus, and the scattering of his limbs over the plain of Nusa. To these were added the wanderings of Isis, or Damater; who went over the world to pick up the limbs of the same Bacchus, under the character of Osiris. The Egyptians succeeded to the Cuthites in their cities and temples; and had been too early initiated in their rites ever to forsake them. They had the like hymns; and commemorated the same events: for they were a branch of the same family. Hence they recorded the labours of the Titans, and all the calamities and wanderings, to which their Deities had been exposed. The Grecians did the like: their rites and mysteries related to the same events. Linus, Orpheus, Pronapides, Thymoetes, are supposed to have written upon this 22 [Diodorus. L. 3. p. 201.] subject; some in Pelasgic, and others in Phrygian characters. The ground-work of their history is comprised by Plutarch in a small compass, 23 [Plutarch. Is. et Osir. P. 360. [x]. Diodor. L, I. p. 87.] [x]: "The labours of the Giants and Titans — the cries of Bacchus, and the wanderings of Damater."

Such is the history of the Cuthites, who came from Babylonia, and conquered Egypt. This people were no other than the [x], Scuthae, or Scythians, as I have shewn. It is therefore no wonder, that the nation so denominated should be esteemed the most ancient of any upon earth. 24 [Justin. L. 2. c. i.] Scytharum gens antiquistima semper habita. — AEgyptiis antiquiores semper visi Scythae. "The Scythic nation was at all times esteemed the most ancient. — The Scythae were always looked upon as more ancient than the AEgyptians." All this in its proper acceptation is true: for the Cuthites were the first upon earth, who were constituted into a large kingdom; and reduced under a regular government: while other nations consisted of little independent towns and villages. And as they paid the highest reverence to the memory of their ancestors; they preserved evidences for their own antiquity, of which other nations were bereaved: so that they maintained this prerogative for ages.
Site Admin
Posts: 34238
Joined: Thu Aug 01, 2013 5:21 am

Re: A New System/Analysis of Ancient Mythology, by Jacob Bry

Postby admin » Sat Apr 23, 2022 7:13 am

Volume 3,
Page 278-289

Concerning Ur of the Chaldees; And of The Region, from whence it was thus distinguished.

BEFORE I proceed, it may not be improper to obviate an objection, which may be made to the place, and region, where I have supposed Abraham to have been first conversant: as there are writers, who have imagined Ur of Chaldea to have been in another part of the world. The region in question is by Strabo plainly defined as a province of Babylonia: and Arrian, Ptolemy, Dionysius, Pliny, and Marcellinus, all determine its situation so clearly, that I should have thought no doubt could have arisen. It appears however, that Bochart, Grotius, Le Clerc, Cellarius, with some others, are dissatisfied with the common opinion; and cannot be persuaded, that Abraham came from this country. Bochart accordingly tells us, that the Ur of the Scriptures was near Nisibis, in the Upper regions of Assyria; and bordered upon Armenia. 1 [Geogr. Sac. p. 38.] Ur Chaldaeorum, ubi Abrahae majores habitarunt, Gen. 11. 28. non procul erat a Corduena, in qua substiterat arca Noae. Res patet ex Ammiani L. 5. Ibi enim Romani transmisso Tigri ad locum a Corduena centesimo lapide disparatum, via sex dierum emensa, ad "Ur nomine Persicum venere castellum": unde profectis primo Thisalphata, deinde Nisibin iter fuit. Itaque Ur circa Nisibin. [Google translate: Ur of the Chaldees, where Abraham's ancestors dwelt 11. 28. It was not far from Cordena, in which Noah's ark had remained. The thing is clear from Ammianus' L. 5. For there the Romans were passing over Tigris to a place separated from Cordena by one hundred stone, via having spent six days to "Ur's name, arrived in a Persian village" whence they had set out, first to Thisalphata, then to Nisibis. And Ur about Nisibis.] This is surely too lightly determined. All that we learn from Marcellinus is, that they passed by a castle called Ur: not a word is there mentioned about a region called Chaldea; nor of a people styled Chaldeans: which was necessary to be found. Yet the learned writer says, res patet, "we may be assured," that here was the birth of the Patriarch: and the original place of his residence was near Nisibis. In another part of his work, he mentions a place called Ur, near Syria, upon the Euphrates; of which notice is taken by 2 [Ita sertur (Euphrates) usque Uram locum, in quo conversus ad orientem relinquit Syriae Palmyrenas solitudines. (Google translate: Thus it is spread (Euphrates) as far as the place Uram, in which, turning to the east, it leaves the deserts of Syria and Palmyra.) Plin. L. 5. c. 24.] Pliny: and he seems to think it not improbable, that here might have been the first abode of 3 [Sic Ur Chaldaeorum erit Ura, de qua Plinius. (Google translate: Thus Ur of the Chaldeans will be Ura, mentioned by Pliny.) L. 5. c. 24. — quod siquis malit sequi, non vehementer repugnabo. (Google translate: what if someone prefers to follow him, I will not vehemently quarrel with him.) Geogr. Sac. p. 78.] Abraham. From hence we may perceive, that he was not very determinate in his opinion. Edessa is said to have been called Ur, and Urhoe: on which account some have been induced to place the birth and residence of the Patriarch here. But who ever heard of Chaldeans in these parts; or of a region named Chaldea?

If there be any thing certain in geography, we may be assured from a number of the best writers, that the country, of which we are treating, was in a different part of the world. Chaldea lay to the south of Babylonia; and was originally bounded to the east and west by the Tigris and Euphrates: so that it was an interamnian region. Hence Joshua tells the children of Israel, in speaking of the first residence of their ancestors, that their 4 [C. 24. V. 2.] "fathers dwelt on the other side of the flood," or river, "in old time, even Terah, the father of Abraham." And St. Stephen, speaking of the call of this Patriarch, says, 5 [Acts. c. 7. v. 2.] "The God of glory appeared unto our father Abraham, when he was in Mesopotamia, before he dwelt in Charran." The land of Chaldea was in those times a portion of the great region called Mesopotamia: and, as I before said, it was bounded to the west by the Euphrates; which in its latter course ran nearly parallel with the Tigris, and emptied itself into the sea below. But as this river was apt every year, about the summer solstice, to overflow the low lands of 6 [Strabo. L. 16. p. 1075.] Chaldea, the natives diverted its course; and carried it, with many windings through a new channel into the Tigris: which junction was made about ninety miles below Seleucia. There were in reality three 7 [Plin. L. 6. c. 26.] streams, into which the Euphrates was divided. One of these was the Nahar-Sares, called also the Marsyas. There was another called the Nahar-Malcha, or Royal River; which was made by 8 [Abydenus apud Euseb. P. E. L. 9. p. 457.] Nebuchadnezzar, and passed into the Tigris near the city abovementioned. The third may be considered as the original river, which ran through Babylon; but was soon after diverted into a new channel; and joined the Tigris about ninety miles below the Nahar-Malcha and Seleucia. 9 [Ammian. Marcellinus. L. 23. p. 287. Marses is a mistake for Narses; and that an abridgment for Naar-Sares.] Persluunt easdem terras et Marses, et flumen Regium, et Euphrates, cunctis excellens, qui tripartitus navigabilis per omnes est rivos; insulasque circumfluens, et arva cultorum industria diligenter rigans, vomeri, et gignendis arbustis, habilia facit. [Google translate: They flow through the same lands as Marses, and the river Regium and the Euphrates, excellent in all, which is a navigable tripartite it is through all the canals; flowing around the islands and the fields carefully watering, ploughing, and producing fruit trees, makes them handy.] There were at the same time many smaller streams, formed by the natives from the Euphrates, both to moisten their grounds, and to take off the exuberance of its waters. These secondary rivulets are often alluded to by the sacred writers: and in the Psalms, they are spoken of under the general name of the 10 [Psalm. 137. v. i.] waters of Babylon. For Babylonia abounded with streams and pools; and was watered beyond any country in the world, except Egypt, which in many respects it greatly resembled. Those, who performed the great work of all, which confirmed in turning the river itself, were the people of Ur, called by 11 [L. 5. c. 19.] Ptolemy and Pliny Orcheni. 12 [L. 6. c. 27.] Euphraten praeclusere Orcheni, et accolae, ripas rigantes; nec nisi Pasitigri desertur ad mare. [Google translate: the Euphrates to shut off the Orchens and its inhabitants, its banks trickling from nor is it deserted by the sea except the Pasitigri.] Before this it ran down to the sea, and emptied itself into the Persic Gulf, near Teredon, about twenty-seven miles below the mouth of the 13 [Plin. L. 6. c. 28.] Tigris. By these means the old channel became dry: and the region was now bounded to the west by the desert of Arabia, as Strabo and other 14 [[x]. Ptolemy. L. 5. c. 20.] writers observe.

Babylon was the capital city of the ancient Babylonian Empire, which itself is a term referring to either of two separate empires in the Mesopotamian area in antiquity. These two empires achieved regional dominance between the 19th and 15th centuries BC, and again between the 7th and 6th centuries BC. The city, built along both banks of the Euphrates river, had steep embankments to contain the river's seasonal floods. The earliest known mention of Babylon as a small town appears on a clay tablet from the reign of Sargon of Akkad (2334–2279 BC) of the Akkadian Empire. The site of the ancient city lies just south of present-day Baghdad. The last known record of habitation of the town dates from the 10th century AD, when it was referred to as the small village of Babel.

The town became part of a small independent city-state with the rise of the First Babylonian dynasty in the 19th century BC. The Amorite king Hammurabi founded the short-lived Old Babylonian Empire in the 18th century BC. He built Babylon into a major city and declared himself its king. Southern Mesopotamia became known as Babylonia, and Babylon eclipsed Nippur as the region's holy city. The empire waned under Hammurabi's son Samsu-iluna, and Babylon spent long periods under Assyrian, Kassite and Elamite domination. After the Assyrians had destroyed and then rebuilt it, Babylon became the capital of the short-lived Neo-Babylonian Empire, a neo-Assyrian successor state, from 609 to 539 BC. The Hanging Gardens of Babylon ranked as one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. After the fall of the Neo-Babylonian Empire, the city came under the rule of the Achaemenid, Seleucid, Parthian, Roman, and Sassanid empires.

It has been estimated that Babylon was the largest city in the world c. 1770 – c. 1670 BC, and again c. 612 – c. 320 BC. It was perhaps the first city to reach a population above 200,000. Estimates for the maximum extent of its area range from 890 to 900 hectares (2,200 acres).

The remains of the city are in present-day Hillah, Babil Governorate, Iraq, about 85 kilometres (53 mi) south of Baghdad, and its boundaries have been based on the perimeter of the ancient outer city walls, an area of about 1,054.3 hectares (2,605 acres). They comprise a large tell of broken mud-brick buildings and debris. The main sources of information about Babylon—excavation of the site itself—references in cuneiform texts found elsewhere in Mesopotamia, references in the Bible [???!!!], descriptions in other classical writing (especially by Herodotus), and second-hand descriptions (citing the work of Ctesias and Berossus)—present an incomplete and sometimes contradictory picture of the ancient city, even at its peak in the sixth century BC.

-- Babylon, by Wikipedia

In this province was the Ur of the Scriptures, called Ur of the Chaldeans: which was so styled, in order to distinguish it from every other place of the same name. It was also expressed Our, Ourhoe, Ourchoe; and the people were called Ourchani. It was sometimes compounded Camour, and rendered Camurine; and it is thus mentioned by Eupolemus. The description of Chaldea given by Strabo is very precise. He speaks much in favour of the natives: and says, that they inhabited a portion of 15 [L. 16. p. 1074.] Babylonia, which bordered upon Arabia and the Persic Sea. He describes them as being devoted to philosophy; especially the Borsippeni, and the Orcheni. These last we may suppose to have been particularly the inhabitants of the city, concerning which we are treating. For here, in the true land of Chaldea, we must look for Ur of the Chaldees. We accordingly find, that there was such a place, called [x], Urchoe, by Ptolemy; by Josephus, Ura, or Ure: 16 [Josephus say of Haran, the son of Terah, [x]. He died among the Chaldeans, in the city called Ur of the Chaldeans." Ant. L. i. c. 7.] [x]. By Eusebius it is rendered Ur: and it was undoubtedly the capital city of the province. 17 [Eusebius in locis Hebraicis, sive sacris. (Google translate: Eusebius in the Hebrew or sacred places )] [x]. Add to this the account given by Eupolemus; who points out plainly the place of the Patriarch's birth, and abode. 18 [[x]. Euseb. Praep. L. 9. c. 17. p. 418.] "He was born," says this historian, "in the city Camarina of Babylonia, which some call Uria. By this is denoted a city of the Chaldeans."

As the history is so plain, why do we go so wide of the mark, as to suppose this city to have been upon the confines of Syria?


Ur Kasdim, commonly translated as Ur of the Chaldeans, is a city mentioned in the Hebrew Bible as the birthplace of the Israelite and Ishmaelite patriarch Abraham. In 1862, Henry Rawlinson identified Ur Kaśdim with Tell el-Muqayyar, near Nasiriyah in southern Iraq.
Nasiriyah is a city in Iraq. It is situated along the banks of the Euphrates River, about 360 km (225 miles) southeast of Baghdad, near the ruins of the ancient city of Ur.

-- Nasiriyah, by Wikipedia

In 1927, Leonard Woolley excavated the site and identified it as a Sumerian archaeological site where the Chaldeans were to settle around the 9th century BC. Recent archaeology work has continued to focus on the location in Nasiriyah, where the ancient Ziggurat of Ur is located.

Partially reconstructed facade and the access staircase of the ziggurat. The actual remains of the Neo-Babylonian structure can be seen at the top.

Other sites traditionally thought to be Abraham's birthplace are in the vicinity of the city of Edessa (Şanlıurfa in modern south eastern Turkey). Traditional Jewish and Muslim authorities, such as Maimonides and Josephus, placed Ur Kaśdim at various Upper Mesopotamian or at other southeast Anatolian sites such as Urkesh, Urartu, Urfa, or Kutha.

-- Ur of the Chaldees, by Wikipedia

or, what is more extraordinary, to make it, as some do, an Assyrian city: and to place it high in the north, at the foot of Mount Taurus, upon the borders of Media, and Armenia; where the name of Chaldeans is not to be found? Yet to these parts does Grotius, as well as Bochart, refer it: and mentioning Ur of the Chaldees, he adds, 19 [Grotius in Genesin. c. 11. v. 31. Ur Chaldaeorum: mansit loco nomen, &c. (Google translate: Ur of the Chaldeans: abode the place name)] the name remained to the time of Marcellinus.


Assyria was a major ancient Mesopotamian civilization which existed as a city-state from the 21st century BC to the 14th century BC and then as a territorial state and eventually an empire from the 14th century BC to the 7th century BC.

Spanning from the early Bronze Age to the late Iron Age, modern historians typically divide ancient Assyrian history into the Early Assyrian (c. 2600–2025 BC), Old Assyrian (c. 2025–1364 BC), Middle Assyrian (c. 1363–912 BC), Neo-Assyrian (911–609 BC) and post-imperial (609 BC–c. AD 240) periods, based on political events and gradual changes in language. Assur, the first Assyrian capital, was founded c. 2600 BC but there is no evidence that the city was independent until the collapse of the Third Dynasty of Ur in the 21st century BC, when a line of independent kings beginning with Puzur-Ashur I began ruling the city. Centered in the Assyrian heartland in northern Mesopotamia, Assyrian power fluctuated over time. The city underwent several periods of foreign rule and domination before Assyria rose under Ashur-uballit I in the 14th century BC as the Middle Assyrian Empire. In the Middle and Neo-Assyrian periods Assyria was one of the two major Mesopotamian kingdoms, alongside Babylonia in the south, and at times became the dominant power in the ancient Near East. Assyria was at its strongest in the Neo-Assyrian period, when the Assyrian army was the strongest military power in the world and the Assyrians ruled the largest empire then yet assembled in world history, spanning from parts of modern-day Iran in the east to Egypt in the west.

The Assyrian Empire fell in the late 7th century BC, conquered by Babylonians, who had lived under Assyrian rule for about a century, and the Medes. Though the core territory of Assyria was extensively devastated in the Medo-Babylonian conquest of the Assyrian Empire and the succeeding Neo-Babylonian Empire invested little resources in rebuilding it, ancient Assyrian culture and traditions continued to survive for centuries throughout the post-imperial period. Assyria experienced a recovery under the Seleucid and Parthian empires, though declined again under the Sasanian Empire, which sacked numerous cities in the region, including Assur itself. The remaining Assyrian people, who have survived in northern Mesopotamia to modern times, were gradually Christianized from the 1st century AD onwards. The ancient Mesopotamian religion persisted at Assur until its final sack in the 3rd century AD, and at certain other holdouts for centuries thereafter.

Mesopotamian religion refers to the religious beliefs and practices of the civilizations of ancient Mesopotamia, particularly Sumer, Akkad, Assyria and Babylonia between circa 3500 BC and 400 AD, after which they largely gave way to Syriac Christianity practiced by today's Assyrians. The religious development of Mesopotamia and Mesopotamian culture in general, especially in the south, was not particularly influenced by the movements of the various peoples into and throughout the area. Rather, Mesopotamian religion was a consistent and coherent tradition which adapted to the internal needs of its adherents over millennia of development.

The earliest undercurrents of Mesopotamian religious thought date to the mid 4th millennium BC, and involved the worship of forces of nature as providers of sustenance. In the 3rd millennium BC objects of worship were personified and became an expansive cast of divinities with particular functions. The last stages of Mesopotamian polytheism, which developed in the 2nd and 1st millenniums BC, introduced greater emphasis on personal religion and structured the gods into a monarchical hierarchy with the national god being the head of the pantheon. Mesopotamian religion finally declined with the spread of Iranian religions during the Achaemenid Empire and with the Christianization of Mesopotamia.

-- Ancient Mesopotamian religion, by Wikipedia

The success of ancient Assyria did not derive solely from its energetic warrior-kings, but also from its ability to efficiently incorporate and govern conquered lands through sophisticated administrative systems. Innovations in warfare and administration pioneered in ancient Assyria were used under later empires and states for millennia thereafter. Ancient Assyria also left a legacy of great cultural significance, particularly through the Neo-Assyrian Empire making a prominent impression in later Assyrian, Greco-Roman and Hebrew literary and religious tradition.

-- Assyria, by Wikipedia

But this learned man is surely wrong in determining so hastily, and with such a latitude: for there was no Ur of the Chaldees, nor any Chaldea in these parts. Lucian was born at Samosata: and Marcellinus was thoroughly acquainted with this country. Yet neither from them, nor from Pliny, Ptolemy, Mela, Solinus, nor from any writer, is there the least hint of any Chaldeans being here. The place mentioned above was an obscure castle; of little 20 [The whole history of the place is comprised in four words: Ur nomine Persicum castellum. (Google translate: Ur name is Persian the fort.) Marcellinus. L. 25. p. 336.] consequence, as we may infer, from its never having been taken notice of by any other writer. Grotius says, mansit loco nomen [Google translate: stayed in place name]: from whence one might be led to imagine, that it had existed in the days of Abraham. But there is not the least reason to suppose any such thing. It is indeed idle to form any conjecture about the antiquity of a place, which occurs but once in history; and which is never mentioned before the fifth century. Why then have men of such extensive learning so industriously deviated from the truth; and gone contrary to the common interpretation? The reason given is this. We are told by these writers, that 21 [Genesis. c. 12. v. i.] "Abraham was ordered to leave his father's house, and to betake himself to the land of Canaan. Now to go from Babylonia to Canaan by Haran, as it is said that Abraham did, is not the direct road: for Haran lies out of the way. But from the Ur of Marcellinus, or from the city Edessa, 22 [In Judaeam via recta est per Carrhas. (Google translate: In Judea there is a right way through Carrhae.) Bochart supra. p. 78.] Haran lies in the very rout; and the course is very direct." But why must all historical certainty be set aside for the sake of a more plausible and compendious way of proceeding? We frame to ourselves, at this distance of time, notions about expediency and convenience; which arise merely from our inexperience, and from those unnecessary doubts, which are formed through ignorance. Where is it mentioned in the Scriptures, that the Patriarch was restrained to the direct road? After he had left Ur of the Chaldees, he went with his father to Haran, and dwelt there. Some make the term of his residence to have been a year: others imagine it to have been a great deal more. If he did not proceed directly in regard to time, why must he be supposed to have been limited in respect to place? What matters it, by which rout he went to Canaan, if the call was not so cogent, but that he had permission to stay by the way?

There is another question to be asked. As the rout supposed to be taken from Babylonia and the south towards Haran is objected to; I should be glad to know, which way the Patriarch should have directed his steps. It is answered, "that he ought to have gone to Canaan directly 23 [Via esset (e Babylonia) multo compendiosior per Arabiae deserta. (Google translate: The road was (from Babylon) a much shortcut through the Arabian deserts.) Ibid.] westward, through Arabia: which would have been nearly in a strait line, if he had gone from the lower regions of Babylonia: but as he proceeded in a circuit, that could not be the place of his departure." Now, from the best accounts, we may be assured, that the rout, which we suppose him to have taken, was the true, and only way: there was no other, by which people could proceed. And we take off greatly from the purport and precision of the holy Scriptures, by thus arbitrarily changing the scene of action, because it does not accord with our prejudices. And these prejudices arise from our being accustomed to scanty maps; and not looking into the natural histories of the countries, about which we are concerned. The very best accounts prove, that this was the rout ever taken by people, who went from Babylonia, and its provinces, to Palaestina and Egypt: for the direct way, as Grotius terms it, and which Bochart recommends, could not be pursued. From Babylonia and Chaldea westward was a 24 [[x]. Agathemer. apud Geog. Vet. vol. 2. P. 43.] desert of great extent; which reached to Canaan, and still farther to the Nile. Nor is there, I believe, upon record above one instance of its having ever been 25 [It is said by Berosus, that Nebuchadnezzar, hearing of his father's death, made his way in great haste over this desert. Apud Josephum contra Ap. L. i. c. 9. p. 450.] traversed. All armies, and all caravans of merchants, were obliged to go to the north of the Euphrates, when they came from Babylonia to Egypt; or the reverse, when they went from Egypt to Babylonia. Herodotus, when he is speaking of the march of Cambyses to Egypt, says, that the only way into that country was downward from the Euphrates, by Syrophenicia, and Palaestine. 26 [Herodotus. L. 3. c. 5.] [x]. "There is no other apparent passage into Egypt but this." And the reason is plain: for the Arabian desert rendered it impracticable to proceed in a strait line. People were obliged to go round by Carchemish upon the Euphrates: and the kings of Babylonia and Egypt fortified that place alternately, to secure the passage of the river. When Pharaoh Necho, and the king of Babylon wanted to meet in battle, they were obliged to come this way to the 27 ["The army of Pharaoh Necho— which was by the river Euphrates in Carchemish, which Nebuchadrezzar, king of Babylon, smote." Jeremiah, c. 46. v. 2. See 2 Kings. c. 23. v. 29. 2 Chron. c. 35. v. 20.] encounter. The army of Cambyses, and all the armies of the Greeks and Romans; those who served under Cyrus the younger; the army of Alexander, Antiochus, Antonius, Trajan, Gordian, Julian, went to the north by the Euphrates. Some of these princes set out from Egypt, yet were obliged to take this circuit. It is remarkable, that Crassus, in his rout towards Babylonia went by 28 [Charrae is called Harran by the Nubian geographer, p. 198. and by Nassir Ettusaeus. Geog. Vet. v. 3. p. 94.] Charrae, or Haran: which was the very spot, where Abraham, in his way from Chaldea to Canaan, resided. At this place, the Roman general was met by Surena, and slain. Alexander the Great went nearly in the same track: for though this was round about, yet it was by many esteemed the best road to Babylonia. The emperor Julian also took his rout by Haran; but from thence went the lower way by Cercusium and the Euphrates. For there were two roads through Mesopotamia to Babylon, and Persia; and they both commenced at 29 [Marcellinus. L. 23. p. 273. Carras, antiquum oppidum; unde duae ducentes Persidem voae regiae distinguuntur. (Google translate: Carras, an ancient town; from which two were married The king's voices are distinguished in Persia.)] Charrae or Haran. All these circumstances afford great light to the Mosaic history, and abundantly witness its truth and precision, even in the most minute particulars. It is therefore a great pity, that men of learning are not sufficiently considerate in their determinations. We from this instance see, that they would set aside a plain and accepted interpretation, on account of a seeming difficulty, to the prejudice of Scripture: which interpretation, upon inquiry, affords a wonderful evidence in its favour: for it appears, upon the strictest examination, that things must have happened, as they are represented.

The inhabitants of Chaldea were Cuthites, of the same family, as those, by whom Babylon was founded. They are in the Scriptures uniformly called Chasdim, or Chusdim. This, I may be told, is contrary to the usual mode of composition: for if they were the sons of Chus, they should regularly have been rendered Chusim. How then came they to be called Chusdim, contrary to all rule and analogy? To this I can say little. I can give no reason, why Chus was called Cuth; and the land of Cushan, Cutha: much less can I account for its being still further diversified, and rendered Scutha, and Scuthia. It is equally difficult to say, why these very Chasdim of the Scriptures are by the Ethnic writers continually styled Chaldaei; which is still a greater variation. All I know is, that the same names, at different periods, will be differently expressed: and scarce any terms are exhibited by those, who are foreign to a country, as they are pronounced by the natives. But we are not to go by sound and similarity: nor does the history of a family depend merely upon their 30 [There was a Chaldea upon the Pontus Euxinus, to the east of Sinope, in the country of the Chalybes: but nobody will suppose that Abraham came from hence.] name. Had the people, of whom we are treating, been in any degree natives of Assyria, we should certainly find some traces of them in the Assyrian history. But we hear nothing of them till the reign of Salmanasser, or Asuraddon: who, when they transplanted conquered nations, and had removed Israel from Samaria, brought men of 31 [2 Kings, c. 17. v. 24. of Assur-Adon. See Ezra. c. 4. v. 2.] Babylon and Cutha in their room. From hence we may judge, that the Cuthites and Babylonians, among whom the Chaldeans are included, were in the same interest; and had been in confederacy against the Assyrians: consequently they were not of their family. In a little time, the Babylonians shook off the Assyrian yoke, and in their turn formed a great empire: and then we have continual accounts of the Chaldeans. They were in a manner the same as the Babylonians, who were indisputably the sons of Chus: and the two names are used by writers indifferently, as being nearly synonymous. Hence when the army of Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, surrounded Jerusalem, it is called "the army of the Chaldees." 32 [2 Kings, c. 25. v. 4. In like manner it is said, that "the army of the Chaldeans pursued after the king, and overtook Zedekiah." Jeremiah, c. 52. v. 8.] "The Chaldees were against the city round about:" 33 [2 Kings, c. 25. v. 10.] "And the army of the Chaldees — brake down the walls." Isaiah speaks of Babylon, as 34 [Isaiah. c. 13. v. 19.] "the beauty of the Chaldees excellence." And when Darius the Mede obtained the throne of Babylon, he is said to have been 35 [Daniel, c. 9. v. i.] "made king over the realm of the Chaldees." Even Nebuchadnezzar abovementioned is distinguished by the title of 36 [Ezra. c. 5. v. 12.] "Nebuchadnezzar, the king of Babylon, the Chaldean." The reason of all this, I think, is plain. It has been mentioned, that, when Babel was ruined, it lay unoccupied for ages: and the region of Babylonia seems to have been but thinly inhabited. The city was at last rebuilt: and when it was taken in hand, the work was carried on by the Chaldeans, under the inspection of Merodach Baladan, but chiefly of his son Nebuchadnezzar. He is expressly said to have 37 [Daniel, c. 4. v. 30.] built it, and to have been a Chaldean. Hence Babylon is very truly represented, as "the beauty of the Chaldeans excellence:" for that people raised its towers; and gave it an extent and magnificence superior to Erech, Ur, Borsippa, and every city of the nation. Indeed, if we may judge from the accounts transmitted, there was not a city in the world, that could equal it in 38 ["Babylon, the glory of kingdoms, the beauty of the Chaldeans excellence." Isaiah above.] grandeur and beauty. For this reason, the Chaldeans and Babylonians are spoken of as the same people; for they were originally the same family: and when they came to reside in the same province, there could be no difference between them. There were however some tribes, which seem to the last to have been distinguished, and called, by way of eminence, Chaldeans. Such were those of Borsippa and Ur, so celebrated for philosophy and divination; out of whom came the Magi, Aruspices, and Soothsayers. Those of Ur were particularly styled Urchani, which may either signify "Lords of Ur, or Priests of Fire." Strabo speaks much of the Chaldeans, and of their great wisdom: and says, that from them, and from the Egyptians, the learning of Greece was derived. Such is the history of this city of the Chaldees, and of the country, wherein it was situated.  
Site Admin
Posts: 34238
Joined: Thu Aug 01, 2013 5:21 am

Re: A New System/Analysis of Ancient Mythology, by Jacob Bry

Postby admin » Mon May 02, 2022 5:36 am

Volume 3, Page 291-310

Of Egypt, and Its First Inhabitants; And of Its Kings, and Dynasties.

THE land of Egypt consisted of a narrow region, which reached from Syene downwards to the upper point of Delta, following the course of the Nile. It was above five hundred miles in length; and on each side bounded by mountains, which terminated exactly, where the region ended. At this point the Nile divided, and the country below for a great while was a morass: but when it came to have canals made, and to be properly drained, it turned out the richest, and at the same time the most beautiful, part of Egypt. It was called Delta, and divided into numberless islands, which swarmed with inhabitants. In consequence of this it abounded with towns and cities beyond any country upon earth; some of which seem to have been of great extent. These islands were finely planted; and the communication between them was kept up in boats and barges. In this manner they made their visits to particular temples at stated times: which voyages were attended with musick, collations, and the highest 1 [Herod. L. 2. c. 60. 61.] festivity. In the course of their navigation, they passed by innumerable towns and villages, surrounded with gardens well disposed, and abounding with trees of different sorts, particularly with palms, and 2 [The Persica, a tree most acceptable to Isis. Plutarch. Is. et Osir. p. 378.] peach-trees, and groves of acacia. On the Libyan side to the west, a large region seems to have been of old overflowed by the waters of the Nile, which had no outlet to pass freely, and became stagnant and unwholesome. An ancient king took an opportunity, during the recess of the Nile, to dig out the waste mud, and with it to form an head below: by which means he prevented the exuberant waters from descending any more to the lower country. All that was above he formed into a mighty lake, which comprehended a space of above one hundred 3 [Herod. L. 2. c. 149. Mela. L. i. c. 9. p. 56. Quingenta millia passuum in circuitu patens (Google translate: Five hundred miles in an open circuit.).] miles square. In this were many islands, with temples and obelisks: and close upon it was the Labyrinth, a stupendous work; also the city of the sacred crocodile, held in great veneration. It was called the lake Moeris; and was supposed to have had this name from the king, by whom it was made. But Moeris signifies a marish, or marsh; and alludes to its pristine state, from whence it was denominated. The later Egyptians did not know for certain the name of any one prince, by whom their great works had been performed. They either substituted the title of some Deity; or out of the name of the place formed a personage, whom they supposed to have been the chief agent. Lacus Moeris signifies the marsh-lake; the piece of water made out of the fen: and the region below, which was converted to dry ground, was called 4 [[x]. Ptolemy. L. 4. c. 5. p. 121. Called also Macaria, or the land of Macar.] Scithiaca, also "the sea without water." That part of Delta, which existed in the first ages, was in like manner marshy, as I have shewn. It was likewise continually increasing towards its basis by the protrusion of soil from the river. This was very considerable, when the Nile overflowed; so that the lower region had every year an additional barrier towards the sea: and oftentimes new islands arose from the prevalence of the floods above. What it was originally, may be seen from the natural trending of the coast, if we take in a large circuit, and carry the terminating curve from Ascalon, Gaza, and Mount Casius on one side, to Alexandria and Paraetonium on the other. This line regularly produced, as in the annexed map, will shew the original extent of Delta: and what exceeds that termination, will mark the increase of soil, which the country has for ages been obtaining. Of all this the natives availed themselves. What was thus given them, they raised by art, and further improved; and gained one third more of territory by this increment from the Nile.

The Mizraim, who settled in Egypt, were branched out into 5 [Genesis. c. 10. v. 13.] seven families. Of these the Caphtorim were one; who seem to have resided between Pelusium and Mount Casius, upon the sea-coast. Pelusium was properly in Arabia: but the Egyptians very early drew a vast canal, which reached near an hundred and sixty miles from Bubastus to the 6 [Diodor. Sic. L. i. p. 52.] sea. This was a barrier to the east; and included Pelusium within the precincts of Egypt. Caphtor, from, whence the people were denominated, signifies a tower upon a promontory; and was probably the same as Migdol, and the original place of residence of the Caphtorim. This people made an early migration into Canaan, where they were called Palestines, the Philistim of the Hebrews; and the country, where they settled, was named 7 [[x] of Greece. Pelusium was called Pelessin, and Pelestin: and the people, who settled in the part of Canaan, of which we are speaking, called it Pelestina, in memorial of the region, from whence they came.] Palaestina. Whether the whole of their family, or only a part, are included in this migration, is uncertain. Be it as it may, they seem to have come up by divine commission, and to have been entitled to immunities, which to the Canaanites were denied. 8 [Amos. c. 9. v. 7. Jeremiah speaks of the remnant of Caphtor, by which he alludes to the Philistines, c. 47. v. 4. See Deuteronomy, c. 2. v. 23.] "Have not I" (saith the Lord) "brought up Israel out of the land of Egypt? and the Philistines from Caphtor?" In consequence of this, upon the coming of the Israelites into Canaan, they seem to have been unmolested for years. They certainly knew from the beginning, that the land was destined for the Israelites, and that they only dwelt there by permission. Hence when Abraham sojourned at Gerar, the king of the country was particularly courteous; and offered him any part of his demesnes to dwell in. 9 [Genesis. c. 20. v. 15.] "And Abimelech said, "Behold, my land is before thee: dwell where it pleaseth thee." And when the Patriarch afterwards, being aggrieved, retired to Beersheba; the king thought proper to go to him, attended with Phichol, his chief captain, who was probably one of the Anakim; and insisted upon a covenant and promise, which was to be in force for future generations. 10 [Genesis. c. 21. v. 23.] "Now therefore swear unto me here by God, that thou wilt not deal falsely with me, nor with my son, nor with my son's son: but according to the kindness, that I have done unto thee, thou shalt do unto me, AND TO THE LAND, wherein thou hast sojourned." Many years afterwards the same thing happened to Isaac. He had resided at Gerar; and was obliged to retire to Beersheba, where he pitched his tent. The herdsmen of the king had used him ill: and the prince of the country made a point to be reconciled to him; and set out with his chief captain, and in the same state as his 11 [It was undoubtedly a different king of the country. Abimelech was not a proper name, but an hereditary title. Phichol signifies "the mouth of all;" or the person, who gives out orders: in other words, the commander in chief. The meeting of Isaac and Abimelech was above an hundred years after the interview with Abraham.] predecessor. 12 [Gen. c. 26. v. 27.] "And Isaac said unto them, Wherefore come ye to me, seeing ye hate me? — And they said, We saw certainly that the Lord was with thee: and we said, Let there be now an oath betwixt us, even betwixt us and thee; and let us make a covenant with thee; that thou wilt do us no hurt." What hurt could be feared either to them, or to their country, from an old man, of above an hundred years, who with his whole retinue had been put to flight by some herdsmen? or what harm could be dreaded from Abraham, who was equally advanced in years, or from his attendants? Yet a covenant was desired: and nothing can more effectually shew the reputed sanctity of these Patriarchs, and the dignity of their character, than the reverential regard, which was paid to them. Weak to appearance, and unsettled, without the least portion of land, which they could call their own, they are solicited by the princes of the country; who cannot think themselves secure without their benediction and favour. And the covenant sued for by these persons is not merely for their own time; but to extend to their sons, and sons sons, and to the land, in which they dwelt. Accordingly when Joshua conquered the kingdoms of Canaan, we find no mention made of the Philistines being engaged in those wars; nor of their having entered into any confederacy with the kings of the country. And though their cities were adjudged to the tribe of Judah, yet they were not 13 [Joshua. c. 13. v. 2.] subdued: and seem to have enjoyed a term of rest for above forty years. No mention is made of any hostilities during the life of Joshua: which, considering their situation, is hard to be accounted for, except upon the principles, upon which I have proceeded. It is probable, that they afterwards forgot the covenant, which had been formerly made; and would not acknowledge any right of property, or jurisdiction in the Israelites: upon which they were invaded by the sons of Judah, and some of their cities taken. These hostilities commenced in the time of Caleb, above forty years after the Israelites had been in Canaan.

The other tribes of the Mizraim sent out colonies to the west; and occupied many regions in Africa; to which part of the world they seem to have confined themselves. The children also of Phut, the third of the sons of Ham, passed very deep to the southward: and many of the black nations are descended from them; more, I believe, than from any other family. We are informed by 14 [Antiq. L. i. c. 7. See Bochart. Phaleg. p. 295.] Josephus, that "Phut was the founder of the nations in Libya; and that the people were from him called, [x], Phuti." By Libya he understands, as the Greeks did, Africa in general: for the country called Libya Proper, was peopled by the Lubim, or Lehabim, one of the branches from Mizraim. 15 [Chron. Pasch. p. 29.] [x]. "From Lehabim came the Libyes," says the author of the Chronicon Paschale. The sons of Phut settled in Mauritania; where was a region called Phutia, as we learn from Jerom; and a river of the like denomination. 16 [Traditiones Hebr.] Mauritaniae fluvius usque ad praesens tempus Phut dicitur: omnisque circa eum regio Phutensis. [Google translate: Mauritania The river to the present time is called Phut; around him the district of Phutensis.] 17 [Antiq. L. i. c. 7.] Josephus also mentions in this country a river so called. Some of this family settled above Egypt near Ethiopia; and were styled Troglodytae, as we learn from Syncellus. 18 [Syncellus. p. 47.] [x]. Many of them passed inland, and peopled the mediterranean country. In process of time, the sons of Chus, after their expulsion from Babylonia, and Egypt, made settlements upon the sea-coast of Africa, and came into Mauritania. We accordingly find traces of them in the names, which they bequeathed to places; such as Chuzis, Chusarez, upon the coast; and a city Cotta, with a promontory Cotis, in Mauritania. Flumen Cosenum also is mentioned by 19 [L. 5. C. 1.] Pliny. By their coming into these parts the memorials of the Phuteans were in some degree obscured. They are however to be found lower down; and the country upon one side of the river Gambia is at this day called Phuta. Of this Bluet gives an account in his history of Moses Ben Solomon. It is not possible at this aera to discriminate the several casts among the black nations. Many have thought, that all those, who had woolly hair, were of the Ethiopian, or Cuthite, breed. But nothing can be inferred from this difference of hair: for many of the Ethiopic race had strait hair, as we learn from 20 [[x]. L. 7. c. 70.] Herodotus: and we are told by Marcellinus, that some of the Egyptians had a tendency to wool. From whence we may infer, that it was a circumstance more or less to be observed in all the branches of the line of Ham; but universally among the Nigritae, of whatever branch they may have been.

The learning and wisdom of the Egyptians have been always greatly celebrated; so that there is no writer of consequence, who treats or their history, but speaks or them with admiration. The Grecians had high notions of their own antiquity and learning: yet notwithstanding all their prejudices, they ever allow the superiority of the Egyptians. Herodotus had visited Egypt, and seen the temples and colleges of that country. In consequence of this, he had opportunities of gaining some intelligence of the natives, whom he mentions with the highest marks of honour. He says, that they were the 21 [L. 2. C. 121. C. 160.] wisest of all nations: and he acknowledges, that they were never beholden for any thing to the Grecians; but on the contrary, that 22 [L. 2. c. 49. See Clemens Alexand. Strom. L. i. p. 361.] Greece had borrowed largely from Egypt. No nation appears to have enjoyed a better established polity. Their councils, senate, and tribunals seem to have been very 23 [See Johannes Nicolaus de Synedrio AEgyptiorum. Lugd. Bat. anno 1706.] august, and highly regarded. Their community was composed of 24 [Herodotus. L. 2. c. 163.] seven different orders. In most of these there were degrees of honour, to which particulars, upon their any ways excelling, were permitted to rise. They were deeply skilled in 25 [Diodorus. L. i. p. 63. Clemens Alex. Strom. L. 5. p. 657. Herodot. L. 3. c. 129. The very term Chymistry, Chemia, [x], signifies the Egyptian art. The country itself was named Chemia, and Chamia, or the land of Cham. Another sense of Chemia, and Al-Chemia is "a process by fire."] astronomy and geometry; also in chymistry and physick. Indeed they seem to have been acquainted with every branch of philosophy; which they are supposed of all nations to have cultivated the 26 [Tatianus Assyrius. p. 243. Just. Martyr. Cohort, p. 18.] first. The natives of Thebes above all others were renowned for their great wisdom; and for their knowledge in these 27 [[x]. Diodorus. L. i. p. 46.] sciences. Their improvements in geometry are thought to have been owing to the nature of their 28 [Herodot. L. 2. c. 109.] country. For the land of Egypt being annually overflowed, and all property confounded; they were obliged, upon the retreat of the waters, to have recourse to geometrical decision, in order to determine the limits of their possessions. All the best architecture of Greece may be traced to its original in 29 [See Pocock's Egypt, p. 216. and Norden. Plates 107. 127. and 144.] Egypt. Here were the first efforts of genius disclosed; as may be still seen about Luxorain, Ombus, Assouan, and Thebes. In these parts resided the Artists, who formed the ancient cornice and architrave: and who invented the capital, and shaft, of which the first pillar was composed. And however early these specimens may have been, yet there are among them some, which witness no small elegance and beauty. To them is attributed the invention of the 30 [Macrobius Somn. Scip. L. i. p. 75. 76. Herod. L. 2. c. 4. Anni certus modus apud solos AEgyptios semper fuit. (Google translate: There was always a definite limit of the year among the Egyptians only.) Macrob. Saturn. L. i. p. 169.] zodiac and sphere: and they are said to have first observed accurately the solstitial points; and to have determined the year. Macrobius styles Egypt the parent of 31 [AEgyptus artium mater. (Google translate: Egypt is the mother of arts.) Ibid. p. 180. [c]. Diod. Sic. L. i. p. 63.] arts: and he says, that Julius Caesar, when he took in hand to correct the Roman Calendar, effected it upon Egyptian principles; 32 [C. Caesar — imitatus AEgyptios, solos divinarum rerum omnium conscios. (Google translate: C. Caesar — ​​imitating the Egyptians, only conscious of all divine things.) Macrob. Sat. L. i. p. 178. ] "copying those great masters, who were the only proficients upon earth in the noble and divine sciences." The works, which they erected were immense. Both their obelisks and pyramids have been looked up to with amazement: and it has been the study of the world to devise, by what mechanical powers they were effected. Their ramparts, sluices, canals, and lakes, have never been surpassed, either in number, or magnificence, by any people in the world. Their sculptures, though executed in so early an age, are represented in many instances as very curious and precise. Frederick Hasselquist, a learned Swede, 33 [Travels, p. 99.] assures us, that he could plainly distinguish every bird, and the particular species of every bird, upon the obelisk at Matarea.

No wonder, that a people so excellent should be beheld with a degree of 34 [[x]. Diod. Sic. L. i. p. 62.] veneration by the Grecians. On this account all those, who were zealous of making a proficiency in philosophy, betook themselves to 35 [Diodorus. ibid. Clemens Alex. Strom. L. i. p. 356.] Egypt, which was the academy of Greece. Among the foremost of these were Pythagoras, Thales, Solon, 36 [Eudoxus primus ab AEgypto motus (siderum) in Graeciam transtulit. — Conon postea, diligens et ipse inquisitor, defectiones quidem (forte quasdam) solis ab AEgyptiis servatas collegit. Senecae Quaest. (Google translate: Eudoxus, the first movement (of the stars) from Egypt, transferred to Greece. — Conon afterward, a diligent and diligent investigator, indeed (perhaps certain) eclipses of the Egyptians alone saved and collected. Of Seneca's Questions.) Nat. L. 7. c. 3.] Eudoxus, 37 [Macrobius mentions, that Plato in particular was an admirer of the Egyptians. Plato AEgyptios, omnium philosophiae disciplinarum auctores, secutus. (Google translate: Plato followed the Egyptians, the authors of all the philosophies of the sciences.) Somn. Scip. L. 1. p. 64.] Plato; who studied there a good while. In the days of the two last, the country was more open to foreigners: and from that time it was more generally, and more eagerly visited. Yet the AEgyptians were then lowered, by having been so often subdued: their histories had been greatly damaged, and their knowledge much impaired. Yet there was sufficient merit still left to make even a Grecian admire. From hence we may fairly judge of the primitive excellence of this people: for if science appeared so lovely in ruins, what must have been, its lustre, when in a state of perfection?
O, quam te dicam bonam
Antehac fuisse, tales cum sint reliquiae!

[Google translate: Oh, how good will I say
I used to have been, since they are such relics!

It is observable, that in the law of Moses a deference is paid to the Egyptians; and the Israelites were ordered to look upon them with an eye of favour: nay, they were permitted to enter the sanctuary after the second 38 [Deuteron. c. 23. v. 7. 8.] generation.

The Egyptians were very happily situated; and enjoyed all the necessaries of life within themselves. They were peculiarly fortunate both in the salubrity of their air, and in the uncommon properties of the Nile. Their animals were very prolific: and their soil, being continually renewed, was beyond measure fruitful; and in most places produced two crops of corn in a year. They moreover enjoyed the good things of the whole earth: for though they were themselves averse to navigation, yet they admitted merchants to Coptos, and to other places. From these they received balm, gold, spices, ivory, gems; and in return they gave their corn, flax, and fine linen, and whatever was the product of Egypt. The sacred writers take notice of the rich garments, and curious embroideries of this people: indeed there are repeated allusions in the Scriptures to their wonderful 39 [Ezekiel mentions the Tynans trading for "the fine linen, and embroidered work of Egypt," c. 27. v. 7. The Egyptians, "that work in fine flax." Isaiah. c. 19. v. 9.] skill and wisdom. Hence, when the prophet Isaiah foretells the ruin of the kingdom, he speaks of the superior understanding of the people, which nothing but a judicial blindness could pervert. 40 [C. 19. 14.] "The Lord hath mingled a perverse spirit in the midst (of Egypt.) 41 [C. 19. V. 11. 12. 13.] Surely the princes of Zoan are fools: the counsel of the wise counsellors of Pharaoh is become brutish. How say ye unto Pharaoh, I am the son of the wife; the son of ancient kings? Where are they? Where are thy wise men? — The princes of Zoan are become fools: the princes of Noph are deceived. They have also seduced Egypt." The prophet had before said, 42 [V. 3.] "The spirit of Egypt shall fail in the midst thereof; and I will destroy the counsel thereof: — and the Egyptians will I give over into the hand of a cruel lord, and a fierce king, & c." Hence we find, that nothing but infatuation could be the ruin of this people.

Egypt of all countries seems to have been the most secure. It was to the north defended by the sea; and on every other side by deserts of great extent. It abounded with inhabitants; and had many cities of great strength: and as it enjoyed every thing necessary for life within itself, and was in a manner secluded from the world; it had little to fear from any foreign power. We find however, that it was conquered more than once; and after a series of great calamities finally brought to ruin.

The misfortunes of this people arose from a repining discontented spirit, which produced intestine animosities. They often set aside their rightful monarch; and substituted many princes instead of 43 [See Marsham's Chron. Saec. 16. [x]. p. 443.] one. At the invasion of Sabacon, the Ethiopian, the Egyptians seem to have been disunited by factions, and under many petty 44 [Sabacon AEthiops AEgyptum jam disjunctis viribus debilitatam occupat. (Google translate: Sabacon, the Ethiopian, seizes Egypt, now weakened by the disjointed forces.) Ibid. Saec. 16. p. 456. When afterwards Sennacherib invaded the land, the soldiers refused to fight. Herodot. L. 2. c. 141.] princes. And when the Ethiopic government ceased, they again lapsed into a state of misrule; till at last twelve of the most powerful in the nation assumed regal dignity; and each seized to himself a portion of the 45 [[x]. Diodorus. L. 1. p. 59. See also Herod. L. 2. c. 147.] kingdom. This was productive of still greater confusion; and of more bitter feuds. For though they are said to have agreed together for a while; yet they at last quarrelled, and hostilities 46 [Diodorus. L. i. p. 60.] commenced, till at last the monarchy came to Psammitichus. Of these commotions the prophet Isaiah speaks, when he is foretelling the destruction of Egypt. 47 [C. 19. v. 2.] "I will set the Egyptians," says the Deity, "against the Egyptians; and they shall fight every one against his brother, and every one against his neighbour; city against city, and nome against nome. And the spirit of Egypt shall fail in the midst thereof: and I will destroy the counsel thereof." They were the wisest people upon earth; but their good sense was at last perverted: and no nation ever co-operated more strongly to its own destruction. Hence they were conquered by Esar-Adon the Assyrian; and by the king of Babylon Nebuchadnezzar, who took advantage of these internal commotions. Afterward they became a more easy prey to the Persians, and Grecians, who ruled over them in their turns. The conquest of Egypt by Nebuchadnezzar seems to have been attended with grievous calamities, such as the nation, had never before experienced. The country, as I have mentioned, was so happily situated, as to have little occasion to interfere with the politics of other nations. But they were a mighty people, and could not refrain themselves from shewing their power. Hence they unnecessarily opposed both the 48 [2 Kings, c. 19. v. 9. and c. 23. v. 29. 2 Chron. c. 35. v. 20.] Assyrians and Babylonians: and Pharaoh Necho went up 49 [2 Chron. c. 35. v. 20. Jeremiah, c. 46. v. 2.] twice to Carchemish upon the Euphrates, to encounter those nations. He was at last 50 [Jeremiah. c. 46. v. 2.] beaten; and both by his march upwards, and by his retreat, he pointed out the path to Egypt, and shewed, how it might be assailed. In consequence of this it was attacked by Nebuchadnezzar, and totally subdued: and not content with this, the victor seems to have carried his resentment to a violent degree, so as almost to extirpate the nation. What they suffered may be known from what was predicted; which contains a sad denunciation of evil. 51 [Ezekiel. c. 29. v. 8.] "Therefore, thus saith the Lord God; Behold I will bring a sword upon thee; and cut off man, and beast out of thee. And the land of Egypt shall be desolate and waste; and they shall know, that I am the Lord: because he hath said, The river is mine, and I have made it. Behold, therefore I am against thee, and against thy rivers; and I will make the land of Egypt utterly waste, and desolate, from the Tower Migdol to Syene, and the border of Ethiopia. No foot of man shall pass through it, nor foot of beast shall pass through it, neither shall it be inhabited forty years. And I will make the land of Egypt desolate in the midst of the countries that are desolate; and her cities, among the cities that are laid waste, shall be desolate forty years: and I will scatter the Egyptians among the nations, and will disperse them through the countries. Yet thus saith the Lord God, At the end of forty years will I gather the Egyptians from the people, whither they were scattered. And I will bring again the captivity of Egypt; and will cause them to return into the land of Paphros, into the land of their habitation, and they shall be there a base kingdom." In the subsequent part of this prophecy there are many beautiful allusions to the rites and idolatry of this people: and the same is to be observed in Jeremiah. 52 [Jeremiah, c. 46. v. 19.]:"Oh, thou daughter, dwelling in Egypt, furnish thyself to go into captivity: for Noph shall be waste and desolate without an inhabitant. Egypt is like a fair heifer; but destruction cometh: it cometh out of the north. Also her hired men are in the midst of her, like fatted bullocks; for they also — are fled away together: they did not stand, because the day of their calamity was come upon them — The daughter of Egypt shall be confounded: she shall be delivered into the hand of the people of the north. The Lord of Hosts, the God of Israel, saith; Behold, I will punish the multitude of No, and Pharaoh, and Egypt, with their Gods, and their kings; even Pharaoh, and all them that trust in him. And I will deliver them into the hand of those, that seek their lives; and into the hand of Nebuchadrezzar, king of Babylon, and into the hand of his servants: and afterwards it shall be inhabited, as in the days of old, saith the Lord." We see, that the desolation of the country is foretold by both prophets; and likewise a restoration of those, who were to be carried into captivity. This return of the people, according to Ezekiel, was not to be effected till after forty years. The accounts in the Egyptian histories concerning these times are very dark and inconsistent. So much we learn, that there were great commotions and 53 [Plin. L. 6. c. 30. Strabo. L. 16. p. 1115.] migrations of people, when Pharaoh Necho, and Psammitichus are supposed to have reigned. And both these, and the subsequent kings, are represented as admitting the 54 [Diodorus. L. i. p. 60. 61. Strabo. L. 17. p. 1153.] Carians, and other nations into Egypt; and hiring mercenaries for the defence of the country. All this is repugnant to their former 55 [[x]. Herod. L. 2. c. 154.] manners; and. shews, that the country was become thin of inhabitants, and wanted to be repeopled. Most writers mention an interval about this time, which is styled [x]: but they suppose it to have been only 56 [Sir John Marsham thinks very truly, that these eleven years relate to the anarchy brought on by Nebuchadnezzar. Hiatus iste, five annorum undecim [x], cum calamitatibus AEgypto a Nabuchodonosoro illatis convenienter se habet. (Google translate: This gap, five years eleven [x], cum The situation is consistent with the calamities inflicted on Egypt by Nebuchadnezzar.) Chron, Saec. 18. p. 543. ] eleven years. Diodorus Siculus mentions about the same time an interval of four 57 [L. i. p. 62.] ages. in which there was no king. The original history was undoubtedly not four ages, but four decads of years; and agrees very well with the prophecy of Ezekiel. The historian places this interval between the reign of Psammitichus and Apries. But there is no trust to be given to the position of the kings of Egypt about this time. Apries is by some expressed 58 [Africanus apud Euseb. et Syncellum.] Vaphres; and is with good reason supposed to be the Pharaoh Hophra of the 59 [Jeremiah, c. 44. v. 30. [x]. Seventy.] Scriptures. He is the prince, concerning whom Jeremiah prophesied; and who by Eusebius is called 60 [[x]. Euseb. Chron. p. 17.] [x], Vaphres. He introduces him not long after the captivity: and says, that when Jerusalem was ruined, many of the Jews fled to him for shelter. On this account it was, that the prophet denounced God's wrath upon him, and upon those, who trusted in his assistance. 61 [Jeremiah, c. 44. v. 27.] "Behold, I will watch over them for evil, and not for good: and all the men of Judah, that are in the land of Egypt, shall be consumed by the sword, and by the famine, until there be an end of them. Thus saith the Lord: Behold, I will give Pharaoh Hophra, king of Egypt, into the hand of his enemies, and into the hand of them that seek his life: as I gave Zedekiah, king of Judah, into the hand of Nebuchadrezzar, king of Babylon, his enemy, and that fought his life." By whose hand he was cut off, is not said. We find, 62 [Ibid. v. 30.] that he lived soon after Jerusalem had been ruined by the Babylonians; consequently before the desolation of Egypt: for this did not happen till after the seven and twentieth year of the captivity. 63 [Ezekiel. c. 29. v. 17. Jeremiah, c. 43. v. 10. and c. 44. v. i.] "And it came to pass in the seven and twentieth year, in the first month, in the first day of the month, the word of the Lord came unto me, saying: Son of man; Nebuchadrezzar, king of Babylon, caused his army to serve a great service against Tyrus: yet he had no wages, nor his army, for the service that he served against it. Therefore thus saith the Lord God: Behold, I will give the land of Egypt unto Nebuchadrezzar, king of Babylon: and he shall take her multitude, and take her spoil, — and it shall be the wages for his army. For I have given him the land of Egypt for his labour. — 64 [C. 30. v. 6.] From Migdol to Syene shall they fall. — 65 [Ibid. v. 26.] And I will scatter the Egyptians among the nations, and disperse them among the countries." This desolation was to be for forty years; as the end of which period the Egyptians were to be restored. I have dwelt a good deal upon this subject, because it is an aera of great consequence. We find from these accounts, that Pharaoh Hophra preceded these calamities; and should be placed prior to the four ages of Diodorus. We may learn also from hence, why the history of Egypt in general, and especially about these times, is so defective. From Sabacon downwards to Apries there is great 66 [See Marsham's Chron. Saec. 18. p. 542.] uncertainty and confusion. All this was owing to the feuds and commotions, and to the final dispersion of the people; which was attended with the ruin of their temples, and of the colleges, where their priests resided. These were at Aven, the same as On; also at Taphanes, No-Ammon, Moph, Zoan, and Pathros: which places, and regions, had been by name specified as the objects of God's wrath. When their seminaries were again opened, and their priesthood established; I make no doubt, but that the Egyptians tried to retrieve their lost annals, and to rectify what had been impaired. And in respect to astronomy, and other parts of philosophy, they seem to have succeeded. But a great part of their history had been consigned to pillars and obelisks; and described in the sacred characters, which consisted of hieroglyphics. These were imperfect helps to oral tradition; and never could from the beginning give a precise account of those great events, which they were supposed to commemorate. They contained the outlines of the history: the rest was to be supplied by those, who undertook to explain them; and who interpreted as they had been traditionally instructed. But when this traditional information ceased, or was but imperfectly known, these characters became in great measure unintelligible: at least they could never be precisely decyphered. Hence has arisen that uncertainty, which we experience both in the history, and mythology of this people.  
Site Admin
Posts: 34238
Joined: Thu Aug 01, 2013 5:21 am

Re: A New System/Analysis of Ancient Mythology, by Jacob Bry

Postby admin » Fri May 06, 2022 11:33 pm

Volume 3, Pg. 311-327

Of the Egyptian Kings, and Dynasties  

PLUTARCH takes notice of the great difficulties, with which the Egyptian history is attended. He however acknowledges, that some helps are to be obtained; but those inconsiderable, and very discouraging. 1 [Plutarch. [x]. p. 762.] [x]. "There are after all some slight and obscure traces of true history here and there to be found, as they lie scattered up and down in the ancient writings of Egypt. But it requires a person of uncommon address to find them out; one, who can deduce, great truths from scanty premises." This at first is sufficient to deter a person from going on in a study of this nature. But upon recollection, we find that we have helps, to which the more early writers were strangers. We have for a long time had light opening upon us; and begin now to avail ourselves of the blessing. We talk indeed of ancient days, and times of antiquity; but that time is most aged, which has endured longest: and these are the most ancient days, in which we are ourselves conversant. We enjoy now an age of accumulated experience: and we are to make use of the helps, which have been transmitted, to dispel the mist, which has preceded.

Nothing has so embarrassed the learned world, as the dynasties of the kings of Egypt. We find, that there were people very early in the Christian aera, who took pains to collate and arrange them: and many of the best chronologers in the last and present century have been at much pains to render them confident. But notwithstanding this has been attempted by persons of most consummate learning; yet their endeavours have hitherto been attended with little advantage. The principal of those of old, who have at all engaged in this history, are Theophilus, Tatianus, Clemens, Africanus, Eusebius, and Syncellus. The three first only casually touch upon it: but the others are more particular and diffuse. Josephus also of Judea, in his curious treatise against Apion, has a great deal to this purpose. The chief persons, to whose authority these writers principally appeal, are three. The first is the anonymous author of the Old Chronicle; which has been preserved by Syncellus, and thought to be of very early date. To this succeed the dynasties of Manethon of Sebennis; who was an Egyptian priest in the time of Ptolemy Philadelphus; and wrote what he exhibited, at the request of that prince. The third is the account given by Eratosthenes of Cyrene in the reign of Ptolemy Euergetes; who has transmitted a curious account of the Theban kings; but of those solely, without taking any notice of the princes in other parts of Egypt. From these Egyptian writers the accounts given by Africanus and Eusebius have been compiled; as well as those by Syncellus. According to these chronologers the number of the dynasties amounts to thirty and one: and they extend downwards to the reign of Darius, who was conquered by Alexander. Many moderns have gone deep in these inquiries: among whom we ought to mention with particular respect Petavius, Scaliger, Perizonius, and the incomparable Sir John Marsham.

As there are different specimens transmitted by ancient authors of the Egyptian history; one would imagine, that there could not be much difficulty in collating the reigns of princes, and correcting any mistake, that may have happened in the dynasties. But these writers often differ essentially from each other: and as there is nothing synchronical, to which we can safely apply; it is impossible, when two writers, or more, differ, to determine which is in the right. Add to this, that these dynasties extend upwards, not only beyond the deluge; but one thousand three hundred and thirty-six years beyond the common aera of the creation. Sir John Marsham is very sanguine in favour of the system, which he has adopted; yet is often obliged to complain of having a most barren field of investigation, where there are nothing but names and numbers: and he acknowledges how difficult it is to arrive at any certainty, when a set of unmeaning terms present themselves without any collateral history. There is one mistake common to all, who have engaged in this dark scrutiny. They proceed upon some preconceived notion, which they look upon as a certainty;. and to this test every thing is brought. Such is the reign of Inachus, the flood of Ogyges, the landing of Danaus in Greece. Such also is the supposed reign of a king, when Joseph went into Egypt; and the reign of another, when the Israelites departed. They set out upon these facts as first principles; though they are the things, which want most to be canvassed: and when they have too inconsiderately made these assumptions, they put a force upon all other history, that it may be brought to accord. In most lists of the Egyptian kings, Menes is found first. Many writers suppose this personage to have been Mizraim: others think it was Ham; others again that it was Noah. And as these lists go down as far as Alexander the Great; the dynasties are to be dilated, or curtailed, according to their greater or less distance from the extreams. In one thing they seem to be agreed, that the number of the dynasties was thirty and one.

Whether it be in the power of man to thoroughly regulate the Egyptian chronology, I will not pretend to say. To make some advances towards a work of this consequence is worth our attempting: and if it is not always possible to determine in these dynasties what is true, it may however be of service to point out that which is false: for by abridging history of what is spurious, our pursuit will be reduced into narrower limits. By these means those, who come after, will be less liable to be bewildered; as they will be confined to a smaller circle, and consequently brought nearer to the truth.

The first attempt towards rectifying the chronology of Egypt must consist in lopping off intirely the sixteen first dynasties from the thirty-one specified in Eusebius: for I am persuaded, that the original list consisted of fifteen dynasties only. The rest are absolutely spurious; and have been the chief cause of that uncertainty, of which we have been so long complaining. This may appear too bold and desperate a way of procedure: nor would I venture to speak so confidently, were I not assured, that they never really existed; but took their rise from a very common mistake of the Grecians. This may be proved from that ancient Chronicle, of which I took notice above. The Grecians had this, and many other good evidences before them, as they plainly shew: but they did not understand the writings, to which they appealed; nor the evidences which they have transmitted. In the first place I much question, whether any Grecian writer ever learned the language of Egypt. Many negative proofs might be brought to shew, that neither Plato, nor Pythagoras, nor Strabo, were acquainted with that tongue. If any of them had attempted the acquisition of it, such was their finesse and delicacy, that the first harsh word would have shocked them; and they would immediately have given up the pursuit. If they could not bring themselves to introduce an uncouth word in their writings, how could they have endured to have uttered one, and to have adopted it for common use? I doubt whether any of the Fathers were acquainted with the language of the country. Besides, the histories, of which we are speaking, were written in the sacred language and character, which were grown obsolete: and Manethon, Apion, and the other Hellenic Egyptians, who borrowed from them, were not well acquainted with their purport. Had these memorials been understood, we should not have been at a loss to know who built the pyramids, and formed the lakes and labyrinth, which were the wonders of the world. In respect to the Fathers, who got intelligence in Egypt, they obtained it by a very uncertain mode of inquiry; and were obliged to interpreters for their knowledge. The Grecians wrote from left to right: but the more eastern nations from 2 [[x]. Herod. L. 2. c. 36.] right to left. This was a circumstance, which they either did not know; or to which they did not always attend; and were therefore guilty of great mistakes; and these consisted not only in a faulty arrangement of the elements, of which the names are composed; but also in a wrong distribution of events. Hence an historical series is often inverted from want of knowledge in the true disposition of the subject. Something similar to this has happened in respect to the Old Chronicle, which has been preserved by Syncellus. It contains an epitome of the Egyptian history; and was undoubtedly obvious to every person in that country. In short, it must have been one of the chief sources, from whence Manethon, and others, who came after him, drew. Those of the Grecians, who copied the dynasties from the original, were necessarily told, that the true arrangement here was different from that, which was in use in Greece: that according to their way of reckoning, the first dynasty was the fifteenth, or sixteenth, according to the point, from whence they counted. In consequence of this, they have marked it the fifteenth, or sixteenth; and then fancying, that there was a long series preceding, they have invented as many dynasties more, as they thought wanting, to supply this seeming vacancy. This is not surmise: for we may see the very thing done by 3 [I mention Syncellus: but it may be the person from whom he borrowed, who was guilty of this mistake.] Syncellus. He has transmitted to to us an abridgment of the Egyptian history from the Old Chronicle; containing the dynasties of their kings. And as he was told, that the first was the fifteenth according to his way of numeration, he has actually marked it the fifteenth. In consequence of this, he supposes, contrary to the authority of the history, fourteen prior dynasties, which with that of the Demigods make thirty in the whole. But what he calls the fifteenth, was the first of the Mizraim, who succeeded the Auritas, or Demigods; and this is plainly indicated in the history. It has been shewn, that there was no regal state in Egypt before the coming of the Shepherds, styled Auritas: that with them commences the history of the country. Syncellus accordingly, having mentioned from this Chronicle the imaginary reigns of the Gods, comes at last to those who really reigned; and places them in this order: 4 [P. 51.] [x]. "The first series of princes was that of the Auritae: the second was that of the Mestraeans, or Mizraim; the third of Egyptians." These are the words of the Chronicle; and, one would think, sufficiently clear and determinate, had not the Greeks been infatuated through their preconceived opinions. The author afterwards subjoins the list of their kings from the Chronicle, in which the Demigods stand plainly first: and there is not the least hint given of any prior dynasties. Syncellus, not knowing, that the Demigods were the Auritae, begins with the next series as the first, and calls it the fifteenth.

5 [Ibid.] The REIGNS of the GODS, according to the Old Chronicle.

To Hephaistus is assigned no time, as he is uniformly apparent both by night and day.

Helius, the son of Hephaistus, reigned three myriads of years.

Then Cronus, and the other twelve Divinities reigned 3984 years.

Next in order are the Demigods (the Auritae), in number eight, who reigned 217 years ----- 217

After these are enumerated fifteen generations of the Cunic circle, which take up 443 years ---- 443

16. The sixteenth dynasty is of the Tanites, eight kings, which lasted 190 years ----- 190

17. The seventeenth of Memphites, four in descent, — 103 years ----- 103

18. The eighteenth of Memphites, fourteen in descent, —348 years ------ 348

19. The nineteenth of Diospolites, five in descent, — 194 years ----- 194

20. The twentieth of Diospolites, eight in descent, — 228 years ----- 228

21. The twenty-first of Tanites, six in descent, — 121 years ------, 121

22. The twenty-second of Tanites, three in descent, — 48 years ---- 48

23. The twenty-third, Diospolites, two in descent, — 19 years ----------- 19

24. The twenty-fourth, Saites, three in descent, — 44 years ------ 44.

25. The twenty-fifth, Ethiopians, three in descent, — 44 years ---- 44.

26. The twenty-sixth, Memphites, seven in descent, — 177 years ------- 177.

27. The twenty-seventh, Persians, five in descent, — 124 years --- 124

28. The twenty-eighth, lost.

29. The twenty-ninth, uncertain who — 39 years --- 39

30. The thirtieth, a Tanite, — 18 years ---- 18

To the above should be added the thirty-first dynasty, which consisted of three 6 [Darius Ochus, Arses, and Darius Codomannus, who was conquered by Alexander.] Persians; for with this every catalogue 7 [[x]. Euseb. Chron. p. 17. Syncellus. p. 77. p. 256.] concluded. The lists transmitted to us by Africanus, and Eusebius; and that of Manethon, from whom they borrowed, closes with this: and it was undoubtedly in the original copy of Syncellus. We have in the above an epitome of the regal succession in Egypt, as it stood in the Ancient Chronicle: and though short, it will prove to us of much consequence in our inquiries. We find here, that the Demigods, or Auritae, stand first: and with them the history of the country must commence. These are succeeded by those of the Cunic, or Royal, circle, the ancient Mizraim: and those again by other dynasties in their order. As to Hephaistus, Helius, and the twelve other Gods, they were only so many sacred titles, which were either prefixed to the Egyptian calendar, or to the months of the year, by way of distinction. The numbers, with which they were accompanied, were astronomical computations; and related to time, and its portions, and not to the reigns of princes. From hence we may be assured, that there were no kings prior to those abovementioned. But the Grecians having been told, that in their retrograde way of computation, the fifteenth dynasty was the first, were led to think, that the converse also was true; and that the first was the fifteenth. And those, who differ in the position of the Shepherd dynasty, yet count from the last. This may be seen in the Chronicle, which I have exhibited above: where the first dynasty numbered is the Tanite, which is marked the sixteenth: and this is the 8 [The reason of their stopping at this in their computation upwards, was, because this was looked upon as the first genuine Egyptian dynasty. This will be shewn hereafter.] sixteenth from the bottom, if we include the last of the Persians. In consequence of this, that of the Auritas must have been the fourteenth downwards, which would naturally induce us to expect many prior kings. But it is manifest from Egyptian evidence, from the Chronicle itself, that there were no preceding dynasties: for the list of the Deities was not taken into consideration. Manethon counted it the fifteenth; and it is accordingly so expressed by Africanus. Hence these writers, and their followers, have been led to suppose, that there were once fourteen dynasties antecedent. They accordingly prefixed them to the true list; and immediately set themselves to work, in order to remedy an evil, which did not exist. For when thirteen or 9 [They amount to sixteen in Eusebius; and as many in Africanus.] fourteen dynasties had been thus imagined, it afforded matter of very much study to find out the persons, of whom they were composed. There was a great vacuity; and the means were scanty towards supplying what was demanded. Menes was at hand to begin with; who is made the first king by all: and to him they subjoined a list of others, wherever they could obtain them. Africanus in his list mentions this person the first; and says, that he was a Thinite by birth, and destroyed by an hippopotamus. In this he is followed by others. But Menes I have shewn to have been the Lunar Deity, who was probably worshiped in some Thinite temple. The hippopotamus was represented as an emblem of his preservation; which they have perverted to an instrument of his destruction. Eusebius styles him a Thebinite, and Thebean. 10 [Euseb. Chron. p. 18. 1. 13.] [x]. "The first, who reigned, was Menes the Thebinite, the Arkaean; which is by interpretation the Ionian." This Thebinite, and Arkaean, was, we find, the same person, of whom the Ionah, or Dove, was an emblem; so that of his true history we cannot doubt.

At the beginning, next after Menes, they have got together an assemblage of names, and titles; some of which belong to Deities, and others seem to be borrowed from Eratosthenes, and occur in later ages. Such is Sesostris, whom they repeatedly introduce. They represent him as a gigantic personage: and he is at times called 11 [Newton's Chron. p. 69.] Sesosis, Sethoosis, Sesonchosis, Geson Goses; and otherwise diversified. Diodorus, and others, tell us, how he conquered the whole earth; so that there was not a nation, which did not acknowledge his power. Upon his return after his conquests, the first thing, which he took in hand, was the making of a long 12 [Diodor. Sic. L. i. p. 52.] ditch upon the eastern coast of Egypt, to secure himself from his next neighbours. Strange! that the monarch of the whole earth, whose army is said to have been above half a million, should be afraid of a few clans upon the desert. He is mentioned as the first of the line of 13 [Chron. Paschale. p. 47.] Ham, who reigned in Egypt; and he is placed immediately after 14 [Scholia in Apollon. L. 4. v. 272.] Orus. According to some, he comes a degree lower, after 15 [Cedrenus. p. 20.] Thules: in which situation he occurs in 16 [Euseb. Chron. p. 7. 1. 43.] Eusebius. Yet he is again introduced by this author in the second dynasty under the name of 17 [Ibid. p. 14.] Sesocris: and the like history is given of his height, and stature, as is to be found in Herodotus, and Diodorus. Again in the twelfth dynasty we meet with 18 [Syncellus. p. 59.] Geson Goses, in our copies of Eusebius styled 19 [Euseb. Chron. p. 14.] Sesonchoris; but by Syncellus more truly rendered 20 [P. 73.] Sesonchosis: and, what is strange, next but one in the same dynasty, we meet with 21 [Ibid. p. 59.] Sesostris. That we may not suppose him to have been a different person of the same name, a short history of his life and conquests is annexed. His height too, and stature, are described, just as we find them represented by other authors. From hence we may be assured of the identity of this person, who is thus repeatedly introduced to make up a supposed deficiency. In short they have adopted every variation of a name, and out of it formed a new king.

In this manner writers have tried to supply the vacancies in their imaginary dynasties of the kings of Egypt. But they soon begin to be tired: and we have many dynasties without a single name. The duration also of the reigns is often too short to be credited. In the eighth dynasty, twenty-seven Memphites reign but 146 years; which is little more than five years apiece. In the eleventh, sixteen Diospolites reign but 43 years; which amount not to three years apiece. In the thirteenth dynasty, sixty more Diospolites are found, and the sum of their reigns is but 184 years; which are not more than three years and a few weeks apiece. But, what is of all the most incredible, in the seventh dynasty seventy kings reign just 22 [Quot dies, tot reges. Marsham's Chron. Saec. 7. p. 90. Eusebius alters this to fifteen days apiece: upon which Sir John Marsham observes, Numerus dierum augetur, ut reges singuli xv. dies habeant. Ibid. (Google translate: How many days, so many kings Marsham's Chron. Saec. 7. p. 90. Eusebius alters this to fifteen days apiece: upon which Sir John Marsham observes, The number of days it is increased, as each of the fifteen kings they have days. Ibid.)] seventy days.

From the above we may perceive into what difficulties the chronologers were brought, who tried to supply these supernumerary dynasties by such wretched means. They searched into every old register; and laid their hands upon every list, which occurred, in order to fill up these vacancies. Syncellus supposes 23 [Syncellus. p. 91.] Menes to have been Mizraim: but I have shewn, that he was another person; and the emblem of the hippopotamus proves it. Besides, what reason have we to imagine, that Mizraim reigned in Egypt; or that he was devoured by such an animal? The kings, who are brought in immediate succession to him, are 24 [Euseb. Chron. p. 14.] Athothis, Cercenes, and Venephes. But these very kings occur in the same order elsewhere. They occupy the fifty-ninth, sixtieth, and sixty-first places in the catalogue of Syncellus. They consequently lived above one thousand years later. Who can put up with these dynasties of Diospolites, and others, whose reigns are so uncommonly short? And is it possible to give credit to the account of seventy kings, who reigned but seventy days? May we not be assured, that it was some college history; and related to a society of priests, whose office came in rotation; and who attended once in that 25 [The Cunocephali were said to die by piecemeal; and the whole body was extinct after seventy-two days. [x]. Horapollo. L. i. c. 14. p. 29. They were undoubtedly an order of priests, who were in waiting at some temple ; and their term was completed in seventy-two, or rather in seventy, days. See of this work Vol. I. p. 335. note 14.] term? After all, that Africanus, or Manethon before him could do to make up what was wanting, yet many dynasties have scarce a name inserted. The seventh, eighth, 26 [In the ninth, one name only out of nineteen specified.] tenth, eleventh, thirteenth, and fourteenth, are quite anonymous: and in many places, where names have been inserted by Africanus, they are rejected by Eusebius, who came after him.

For these reasons, and from the authority of the Old Chronicle, I entirely set aside the reigns of all princes antecedent to the Auritae, or Shepherds. They first reigned in Egypt, as the best histories shew. And however high the later Egyptians may have carried their antiquity; I cannot admit of any dynasty prior to the fifteenth, counting back from the last. Indeed we may infer, that the fifteenth was looked upon by all as the leading dynasty, before the true system was spoiled. And even afterwards, there seems to have been a tacit reference to it, as to a stated point, by which every thing else was to be determined. Both Manethon, and Africanus place the Auritae, or Shepherds, in the fifteenth dynasty; but count from the first. Eusebius also places them in the fifteenth, if we count from the 27 [It is to be observed, that Eusebius begins with what he styles the seventeenth, and ends with the thirty-first: but in the series the twenty-first is somehow omitted.] last. From hence we may perceive, that which way so ever we may reckon; and however the accounts may have been impaired, the fifteenth was the object, by which they were originally determined. The words of Africanus are very remarkable, when he speaks of the kings of this dynasty. 28 [Syncellus. p. 61.] [x]. "The fifteenth is the dynasty of the Shepherds. These were foreign princes, styled Phoenices. They first built themselves a city in the Sethroite (or rather 29 [It was the province of Seth, called also Sait, to which the author alludes.] Sethite) region; from whence they made their invasion, and conquered all Egypt." This author having mentioned these Shepherds, whom he calls Phoenices, adds a dynasty of thirty-two Hellenic Shepherds; and a third of forty-three Shepherds, who reigned collaterally with as many kings of Thebes. This is extraordinary, that they should correspond so exactly in number; but what is more strange, that they should reign the same number of years. 30 [Syncellus. p. 61.] [x]. "The Shepherd kings, and those of Thebes reigned the same number of years: which amount to one hundred and fifty one." We see here two dynasties at different places, commencing at the same time, which correspond precisely in number of kings, and in number of years. And the sum of these years allows little more than three years and an half to the reign of each prince. For there are forty-three in each place; and reign but one hundred and fifty-one years; which is incredible. Both the Phoenician, and Hellenic Shepherds were certainly the same as those, who made an inroad into Egypt, and took Memphis; and afterwards conquered the whole country. They are brought by Africanus in succession after the former; but were certainly the same, however diversified by titles, and increased in number. The years of their reigns are apparently a forgery. We may, I think, be assured, that Manethon and Africanus out of one dynasty have formed three; and have brought them in succession to one another. And this arose from their not knowing the ancient titles of the persons; nor the history with which it was attended.

Eusebius saw this; and therefore struck out two of these dynasties; and brought the third downwards two degrees lower. By these means the dynasty of the Shepherds is made the fifteenth upwards; which is the true place: and at this commences the history of Egypt. If then we take away the two supposititious dynasties of Manethon, which are rejected by Eusebius, the Shepherd dynasty, marked by him the fifteenth, will be the fifteenth from the bottom. And it will be plain, that the series, from the Shepherds to the last Persic princes inclusive, consisted at first of fifteen dynasties only. The notion of any antecedent kings arose from a retrograde manner of counting among the Greeks; and from an error in consequence of it. In Eusebius the Shepherd dynasty is the fifteenth from the bottom: and if we discard the two spurious dynasties, which he has substituted in the room of the two inserted by Manethon, it will be found the fifteenth from the top, and accord every way. In short, it was, according to Manethon, the center dynasty of twenty-nine. All from it inclusive downwards were genuine; but the fourteenth above supposititious. They were superadded, as I before said, from an error in judgment, and a faulty way of computation.

As the mistake began with Manethon and the Hellenic Egyptians; it may be worth while to give a list of the dynasties, as they stood before they were further corrupted by the Grecians in other parts.
Site Admin
Posts: 34238
Joined: Thu Aug 01, 2013 5:21 am

Re: A New System/Analysis of Ancient Mythology, by Jacob Bry

Postby admin » Wed May 11, 2022 11:00 am

Vol. 3, Pg. 328-368

From the DELUGE,
As they are recorded by MANETHON.

The First Dynasty.

Next after the Demigods was Menes the Theeinite, who was destroyed by a crocodile.

The Second Dynasty of Thmites.


The Third Dynasty of Memphites.


The Fourth Dynasty of Memphites.

Suphis the Second.
Sesocris, who was five cubits high [7.5 feet], and three [4.5 feet] in circumference.
A ninth unknown.

The Fifth Dynasty of Elephantine Kings.


The Sixth Dynasty of Memphites.


The Seventh Dynasty.

Seventy Memphites, who reign seventy days.

The Eighth Dynasty.

Twenty-seven Memphites, who reign 146 years.

The Ninth Dynasty consists of nineteen Princes of Heraclea.

Othoes, killed by a crocodile.
The eighteen others unknown.

The Tenth Dynasty.

Nineteen Heraclotics, who reign 185 years: their names and history unknown.

The Eleventh Dynasty.

Sixteen Diospolites, who reign 43 years. Of these Amemenenes only specified.

The Twelfth Dynasty: twelve Diospolites.

31 [He is called Sesonchosis by Syncellus in another list. He is said to have been the son of the former king. But all dynasties begin with kings of a new family.] Sesonchoris, the son of Amanemes.
Sesostris: the great monarch, who conquered all the world: the next in order to 32 [[x]. How then can he be a king in the twelfth dynasty? The account of his stature is from Eusebius.] Osiris: his height was four cubits, three palms, and two digits. [over 6 ft.]
33 [These three seem not to have been in Manethon: but are supplied by Africanus.] Ammeres.
The rest unknown.

The Thirteenth Dynasty.

Sixty Diospolites, who reign 184 years. No names nor history mentioned.

The Fourteenth Dynasty.

No mention made of it. Eusebius however supplies this vacancy with a Dynasty of 76 Xoites, who reign collectively 184 years: which is but two 34 [See Syncellus. p. 49. Some make the number of years 484, which amounts to six years and seven months apiece. Neither account seems credible.] years and five months apiece.

The Fifteenth 35 [This is in reality the first dynasty of Egyptian kings.] Dynasty is of the Shepherds.

These were six foreign princes, styled Phoenices, who took Memphis; and built a city in the Sethroite nome; from whence they made an irruption, and conquered all Egypt.


At this period are introduced the two spurious dynasties by Manethon; or at least by 36 [It is not certain to whom this mistake is to be attributed; but I should judge, that it was owing to Africanus.] Africanus.

The first is of thirty-two Grecian Shepherd kings, who reign 518 years.

The second of forty-three Shepherd kings, who reign collaterally with just the same number of Diospolites: and also reign precisely the same number of years; which amount to 153.

These dynasties I omit: and in consequence of it call the next dynasty the sixteenth.

The Sixteenth Dynasty of sixteen Diospolites.


The Seventeenth Dynasty of Diospolites.


The Eighteenth Dynasty of twelve Diospolites.

No names nor history is given.

The Nineteenth Dynasty of seven Tanites.


The Twentieth Dynasty of nine Bubastites.

The three next are not named.
The three next are not named.

The Twenty-first Dynasty of four Tanites.


The Twenty-second Dynasty.

Bochoris the Saite.

The Twenty-third Dynasty of three Ethiopians.


The Twenty-fourth Dynasty of nine Saites.

Nechao the Second.

The Twenty-fifth Dynasty of eight Persians.

Darius, the Son of Hystaspes.

The Twenty-sixth Dynasty.

Amyrteus the Saite.

'The Twenty-seventh Dynasty of four Mendesians.


The Twenty-eighth Dynasty of three Sebennytes.


The Twenty-ninth Dynasty of three Persians.

Darius: the same who was conquered by Alexander.

Such was the state of the dynasties, before they had suffered a second interpolation, by having two, which were spurious, inserted. These consisted of no less than seventy Grecian, and other, Shepherd kings, which are very justly set aside by Eusebius. This learned writer had done well, if he had stopped short, after that he had remedied the mistake in Africanus. But he had no suspicion, that the previous dynasties were all spurious; I mean all those before the fifteenth. He was therefore fearful of making a gap in the list; and has supplied the place of those, which he expunged, with some Diospolites, or 37 [As the two dynasties of Manethon were brought after the Shepherds, Eusebius varies his disposition, and places his Diospolites above them: for he saw plainly that the place of the Shepherds was the fifteenth inclusive from the bottom. But by this interpolation he made it the seventeenth from the top. Whereas it was the center dynasty equally removed from the extremes. It stood between the spurious and the genuine dynasties; and belonged to the latter.] Thebans. But they should be all alike cancelled: for with the Shepherds, those Auritae, and Demigods, the chronology of Egypt began. Therefore the seventeenth dynasty of Eusebius should have been marked the first; for it certainly was so esteemed by the ancient Egyptians; and we ought for the future to read, [x]. "The first dynasty consists of the Shepherd kings, who were foreigners, and took Memphis, & c." To the truth of this the Old Chronicle bears witness: in which the first who reign are the Shepherds, under the title of Semidei and Auritae. The number and titles of the dynasties do not turn out so precisely the 38 [It has in some places been altered to serve a purpose; and probably by Syncellus.] same, as we find them in other accounts; for the Chronicle falls off towards the end; being most defective, where we might expect it to be most perfect. It affords however, though very concise, the great outlines of the Egyptian chronology; and must be esteemed as an excellent guide, as far as it is capable of conducting us. I would not therefore do any thing to disparage its merit: yet it is probably nothing more than a part of a yearly calendar, in which the celestial motions were calculated. The months and holy days specified, and the reigns of the kings prefixed. Among many others, there were two Hermetic books, in common use among the Egyptians. The 39 [Jamblichus. Sect. 8. c. 4. p. 160.] first of these related to the energy of the heavens; to the powers of the planets, and the influence of the stars; and was properly a treatise concerning horoscopes, and astrology; and was full of dark and mysterious learning. The other, which related to the real operations of nature, was of more use, but in less esteem; being nothing more than a common almanack, and so denominated. 40 [Ibid.] [x]. "What" says Chaeremon, "is comprised in the Egyptian ALMANACKS, contains but a small part of the Hermaic institutions. The whole, that relates to the rising and occultation of the stars, to the increase and decrease of the moon, was held in the least estimation." Porphyry likewise mentions the Egyptian Almanacks; and gives an account of their contents, which seem to be very curious. They consisted of a detail about the phases of the sun, and moon; and of the rising, and setting of the stars for the year: also of the aspects and influences of the planets, and what was from them portended: 41 [Epistola ad Anebonem (Google translate: Letter to Anebo.). p. 7.] [x] "there was also some physical advice subjoined." All this, says Porphyry, [x], is contained in the Egyptian ALMANACKS." According; to Iamblichus, these calendars were not held in so high repute, as the other Hermetic writings. Be this as it may, our Chronicle is probably of this sort: and though formerly of no great esteem on account of its being cheap and obvious, yet not at all for that reason of less authority. It began, as I have shewn, with the supposed reign of Hephaistus, and of the Sun; and afterwards of Cronus, and twelve other Gods. Syncellus imagines, that it misled Manethon by the immense number of years, of which these reigns are said to consist. The amount of the whole was no less than 36525 years. There is something particular in this number, to which we must attend; as it has misled not only Manethon, but Syncellus. For they with many more have applied these numbers to the dynasties of Egypt: by which means the annals of the country have been carried to an unwarrantable height. Iamblichus, who had studied the Egyptian history very closely, takes notice of the same numbers, and applies them to the writings of Hermes. He introduces Chaeremon, who is speaking of first principles and essences: 42 [[x]. Iamblich. Sect. 8. c. i. p. 157.] "all which," says he, "Hermes transmitted in twenty thousand volumes, according to Seleucus, or rather, as Manethon has shewn, they were compleated in thirty-six thousand five hundred and thirty-five." We may from hence perceive, how uncertain writers were about a circumstance of this consequence. What some applied to the duration of their monarchy, others supposed to be a number of books, the volumes written by Hermes. But the numbers were misapplied in both cases. They related indeed to volumes; but to volumes of another nature; to the revolutions of the sun: and were an artificial calculation. One kind of Egyptian year consisted of three hundred and sixty days; with the five [x], which were sacred to five Deities, 43 [Plutarch. Isis et Osir. p. 355.] Osiris, Aroueris, Typhon, Isis, and Nephthe. Some Deity, or title of a Deity, was affixed to every day in the calendar: hence they amounted to 365 in number. These were introduced into Greece, and, as was supposed, by Orpheus. To this Theophilus alludes, when he upbraids Orpheus with his polytheism. 44 [Theoph. ad Autol. L. 3. p. 381.] [x]; "What advantage did Orpheus ever find from his three hundred and sixty-five Gods?" This year of 365 days was termed the Sothic, from Sothis, the dog-star; at whose heliacal rising it was supposed to commence. But they had another year in Upper Egypt, which was heliacal, and styled the Theban. This consisted more accurately of three hundred sixty-five days, and six hours. 45 [Diod. L. i. p. 46. Caius Caesar — imitatus AEgyptios, solos divinarum rerum omnium conscios, ad numerum solis, qui diebus singulis tricenis sexaginta quinque et quadrante cursum consicit, annum dirigere contendit. Macrob. Sat. L. i. c. 14. p. 178. The Thebans understood [x]. Diod. L. i. p. 46. (AEgyptii menses) tricenum dierum omnes habent: coque explicitis duodecim mensibus, id est, 360 diebus exactis, tune inter Augustum et Septembrem reliquos quinque dies anno suo reddunt; adnectentes, quarto quoque anno exacto, intercalarem,  qui ex quadrantibus consit. Macrob. Sat. L. i. c. 15. p. 180. (Google translate: Diod. L. i. p. 46 Caius Caesar - imitating the Egyptians, only conscious of all divine things the number of sunrises that take a thirty-five-fourth of a day's course convulses, strives to direct the year. Macrob. Sat. L. i. c. 14. p. 178 The Thebans understood [x]. Diod. L. i. p. 46 (Egyptians months) they all have thirty days: boil twelve the months, that is, 360 days after the expiration, then between August and September they pay five days in their year; intercalary which should consist of a quadrant. Macrob. Sat. L. i. c. 15. p. 180)] [x]. "They add," says Diodorus, "to the twelve months, five days complete and one quarter." It was used in many parts of Egypt: and the numbers spoken of above, related to a period in calculation; and was no historical account. They were the amount of days in a cycle of one hundred years: for if one year consists of three hundred sixty-five days, and a fourth part, they in one hundred years will amount to 36525, the number of which we treat. What therefore had belonged to an ancient ephemeris, has by mistake been applied to historical computation: and days have been taken for years. This might well raise the Egyptian history to an unwarrantable height; and make it precede the creation by many ages. Some have thought to evade this difficulty by supposing that the years 46 [Euseb. Chron. p. 8. See Diodorus. L,. i. p. 22. [x].] [x], and 47 [[x]. Syncellus. p. 40. Apud AEgyptios pro annis menses haberi. Varro apud Lactant. L. 2. c. 12. p. 169.] "lunar and monthly years"; which were in use in some parts of Egypt. Syncellus tries to solve it another way; by giving the dynasties from the sixteenth downward their proper number of years, and allowing the overplus to the Gods, and Demigods. But we have no occasion to have recourse to these helps: for the numbers of the real dynasties had nothing to do with this astronomical computation: and Iamblichus, who equally misapplies 48 [He supposes, that they related to the books of Hermes: but the books of Hermes were but forty-two. Clemens mentions them, and specifies the contents of each. Strom. L. 6. p. 758.] them, shews, that they who treated of them differed in their opinions, and were by no means 49 [We learn from him, that what Syncellus in aftertimes applied to Chronology, was by Manethon thought to relate to the books or Hermes. Sect. 8. p. 157.] consistent.

The dynasty of those kings, who immediately succeeded the Shepherds, is termed the Cynic cycle: and the star Sirius, and many other things of eminence among the Egyptians, were styled Cynic; and supposed to have some reference to dogs. But the Cynic cycle, or more properly the 50 [Cun, Chon, Cohen, a King. See Vol. I. Radicals.] Cunic, was the Royal cycle, and related to a series of kings: and every thing so denominated is to be taken in that acceptation. Some of the books of Hermes are styled [x] 51 [By Syncelius expressed [x]. p. 52. See Vol. I. of this work. Radicals. Keren, Rex. Kuran, Heliacus. Hence [x].] [x], "Genic and Curanic"; and from them it is said, that Apion, Manethon, and Panodorus obtained most of their knowledge. These seem to be both Egyptian terms, distorted by the Greeks; but of the same purport, as that above. They were properly Chanic and Curanic books; and contained the history of the priests, and kings of the country. Every Grecian term, which alludes to Egypt, and its history, is to be suspected. It is to be observed, that Manethon, and his copier Africanus, mention, that after the reigns of the Demigods, there was a succession of other persons; and he specifics those of the first dynasty. 52 [Syncellus. p. 54.] [x]. But what can we make of these terms? "Post manes Semideos prima dynastia" [Google translate: After the ghosts of the demigods first dynasty], or "post cadavera Semideos prima dynastia," [Google translate: after the corpses of demigods in the first dynasty] &c. They cannot be made sense by any exposition. Eusebius saw, that there was some mistake; and he has altered it by inserting a copulative. 53 [Euseb. Chron. p. 14. [x]. Euseb. apud Syncellum. P. 55.] [x]. But this does not seem to mend the matter. "Post manes, vel cadavera, et Semideos prima dynastia numeratur." [Google translate: After the ghosts and corpses of demigods of the first dynasty it is numbered.] In another place Syncellus, besides the [x], makes mention of 54 [Syncellus. p. 40.] [x]: "Deorum, et Semideorum, et cadaverum, et mortalium. [Google translate: Gods and demigods and corpses and mortals.] But what sense can be obtained from hence? Is it not manifest, that there is some mistake in terms? I think, we may be assured, that what the Grecians have rendered [x], "a dead body," was Nechus, a King: and that by the words [x], we are to understand, post reges Semideos, "after the reigns of the Demigods began the first Egyptian dynasty." The title of Nechus was very 55 [It seems to have been expressed Necho, Nechao, Nechus, Negus; and was probably the same as [x], Nagud of the Hebrews, which signifies a Prince. It occurs in composition; and we read of Necepsus, Necherophes, kings of Egypt. It was a common title.] ancient, and to be found in many nations. The king of Abyssinia is called Negus at this day. The purport of the history given will, I think, prove what I say. Syncellus mentions, that Manethon borrowed what he wrote from the books of Hermes; and that the first part of his work gave an account of the Gods, and Demigods; which last we know were mortal men, and reigned in 56 [[x]. Euseb. Chron. p. 7.] Egypt. These certainly were the first, who had the title of Nechus: and it is inseparably found with them. Eusebius indeed and Syncellus take pains to disjoin them; and out of them would form a different set of persons. The former accordingly through mistake complains of the Egyptians for introducing such a strange set of personages. 57 [Syncellus. p. 40.] [x]. "Besides these Demigods, they have got together a tedious ill-grounded history of dead persons, and other mortals, who reigned." But the whole of this is a mistake of the true history: and I am persuaded from the position of the terms, that what Eusebius alluded to should have been rendered [x]. And in the reading above, [x] should have been expressed, according to the original, [x], post reges Semideos, [Google translate: after kings demigods] after the Demigod kings, the first dynasty commenced. But either the translators, or transcribers, did not know the meaning of the title Nechus; and have changed it to [x], "a dead body." The like is to be observed in the passage above quoted from Syncellus; where the three orders of princes are mentioned, which occurred in the Egyptian lists: [x]. I make no doubt, but according to the true history the reading was, [x]: "Gods, and Demigods, and kings, who were mortals." These mortal kings are mentioned in contradistinction to the Gods, and Demigods, though the latter were equally men, but were still esteemed a superior order of beings. Eusebius is very severe upon the Egyptian annals, as being full of forgeries. But in this I must in some degree dissent from this very learned author. For I believe, that the history of Egypt would have been found far more consistent, than is imagined, if it had never been perverted by those who borrowed from it. The Grecians ruined a fine system by blending what related to astronomy with chronology; and confounding theology with 58 [ Both Eusebius and Syncellus failed by trying to adapt foreign occurrences to Grecian mythology.] history: by not distinguishing between Gods, and men; between reigns of kings, and revolutions in the heavens. The kings of Egypt had many names, and titles. 59 [Syncellus. p. 63.] [x]. "The princes of the country have often two, and often three names." The Deities had still a greater variety: and I have before mentioned a statue of Isis, inscribed, 60 [Gruter. p. 83. n. 11.] Isidi Myrionymae, "to Isis with a thousand names." These names and titles have been branched out into persons, and inserted in the lists of the real monarchs. Hence we find Menes, the Lunar God, with the hippopotamus stand foremost; and Osiris, and Orus nearly in the same position. I have mentioned of Osiris, that he was exposed in an ark, and for a long time in a state of death. The like is said of Orus, whom 61 [Plutarch. Isis et Osir. p. 357.] Isis found floating upon the waters: also of Adonis, and Thamuz, who returned to light after the expiration of a year. We have the same history concerning Talus, or Tulus, who succeeded Orus. He is by some called Thoulus; and is said to have had a renewal of life, and to have recovered, when Cybele was in labour.

62 [Nonnus. L. 25. p. 674. [x]. Hesych. [x]. Ibid.] [x].

Lastly, it is said of 63 [[x]. Herodotus. L. 2. c. 122. He is said to have ruled over the whole earth, like Zeuth, Osiris, Orus, and others. Hermapion calls him Rhamestes, [x]. Marcellinus. L. 17. p. 126. See Tacitus. Annal. L. 2. c. 60.] Rhameses, whom Herodotus calls Rhampsinitus, that he descended to the mansions of death; and after some stay returned to light. The anniversary of his return was held sacred, and observed as a festival by the Egyptians. I mention these things to shew, that the whole is one and the same history: and that all these names are titles of the same person. They have however been otherwise esteemed: and we find them accordingly inserted in the lists of kings; by which means the chronology of Egypt has been embarrassed greatly.

Having mentioned Rhameses, and his descent to Hades, I cannot help adding a short piece of history concerning him in that situation; in order to give another instance of Grecian sophistry, and abuse of terms. It is well known, that under the character of Damater the ancients alluded to the ark, and to the supposed Genius, which presided over it. This Goddess is said to have received, and sheltered Rhameses in the shades below: and it is further mentioned, 64 [Herod. L. 2. c. 122.] [x], "that he played at dice" with the Goddess. The persons in the ark were represented as in a state of death: and the ark itself was looked upon as a bier or coffin; and as such commemorated in all the rites of Osiris. A coffin, or bier, seems by the Egyptians to have been styled Cuban: which term the Greeks retained, and expressed Cubas. Hence [x]. "Cubas," says Hesychius, "signifies a bier." A ship also was called Cuba, and 65 [[x]. Hesych. It should be [x]. Cubeam maximam, triremis instar, pulcherrimam, atque ornatissimam. Cicero. Verrina 5. 17. From hence Apollo, the prophetic God, was called Cabaeus. [x]. AEschylus apud Macrob. Sat. L. i. c. 18. p. 200.] Cubeia. But at the same time that Cubas, Cuba, and Cubea, had a reference to an ark or ship, [x], Cubus, signified a die: and [x], Cubea, had also a relation to a game. In consequence of this, the Grecians have taken the terms in a wrong acceptation: and instead of saying, that Rhameses, during his state of confinement, was with Damater in Cuba, a ship, or ark, they have turned the whole into pastime, and made him play with her at dice. The like story is told by 66 [Isis et Osiris. p. 355.] Plutarch of Hermes: whence we may infer, that one of that name, for there were several, was the same person as Rhameses.

It is then, I think, manifest, that the Cuthite Shepherds composed the first dynasty of kings in Egypt: and that the Israelitish Shepherds succeeded them not long after their departure. Most of the Fathers are misled by Josephus; who supposes, in opposition to the best authority, that the whole history related to one body of people only, and that those were his ancestors. But the purport of the history given, and the very dynasties, which they have transmitted, prove the contrary. Yet they persist; and accordingly place the Exodus in the reign of 67 [[x]. Syncellus. p. 62.] Amos, or Amosis; which was many years prior to the departure of the first Shepherds, as will be shewn; and consequently contrary to the true order of history. Of these Shepherds we have very circumstantial accounts; though their dynasty is transmitted to us by different writers in a very confused manner. The persons, who have preserved it, are Manethon, Africanus, Eusebius, Syncellus, and Theophilus of Antioch. There is to be found a very great difference subsisting between these writers, of which at present I shall say nothing. Let it suffice, that we have from them transmitted to us a dynasty of the Shepherds; the fifteenth of Africanus; and the seventeenth of Eusebius, which is likewise the fifteenth, if we reckon from the bottom. The next, which is by them all introduced as the eighteenth, begins in this manner:

The Eighteenth Dynasty of Sixteen Diospolite, or Theban 68 [The names are in great measure taken from Africanus in Syncellus. p. 72. See also Theoph. ad Autolyc. L. 3. p. 32.] Kings.

69 [So he is called by Apion, and Ptolemy Mendesius: likewise by Tatianus Assyrius, p. 273. Justin. Martyr. Cohort, p. 13. Clemens Alex. Strom. L. i. p. 378. See Euseb. Praep. Evang. L. 10. p. 490. 493. 497.] Amosis or Tethmosis.

The account given by Manethon, concerning the expulsion of the Shepherds, is this. After they had for many years kept the Egyptians in subjection; the people of Upper Egypt rose against them, and under the direction of their kings carried on a long and bloody war. At last Halisphragmuthosis, more generally called Misphragmuthosis, surrounded them in their district, named Avaris, which they had fortified. Here they were besieged a long time: when they at last came to terms with 70 [Tethmosis of Africanus.] Amosis, the son of the former king. After some conferences, they agreed to intirely evacuate the country, if they might be permitted to go off unmolested. He accordingly gave them his promise, and they all departed. When they were gone, he demolished the 71 [[x]. Tatianus Assyrius, from Ptolemy Mendesius. p. 273. See also Clemens Alex. L. i. p. 378. end note 7.] fortification, which they had raised; that it might not any more be a receptacle to disaffected, or rebellious people. From this history we learn, that Misphragmuthosis, and his son Amosis reigned in the time of the first Shepherds. Therefore the reign of the former, and some years of the latter, should be placed in collateral order, as being plainly synchronical. The like is to be observed of all the previous kings of that dynasty. They were the princes who first made head against the Shepherds; and carried on the war mentioned above, which was put an end to by Amosis. They were consequently synchronical. But by this not having been observed, they are brought after, and some of them are sunk above an hundred years lower than they should be: and this in contradiction to the very evidence by these writers produced. For they allow, that Amosis ruined the place called Avaris, into which his father Misphragmuthosis had before driven the Shepherds: and it is expressly said, that it was afterwards given by Amenophis to the other Shepherds, who succeeded. Nothing can be more determinate than the words of Manethon; 72 [Manethon apud Josephum contra Ap. L. i. p. 460.] [x]. "He gave them the city Avaris, which had been vacated by the former Shepherds." We find that the history lies within a short compass. The only thing to be inquired into, is the identity of the persons spoken of. As Misphragmuthosis defeated the Shepherds, and drove them into Avaris; do we find a king of Egypt so called? There is a king of that name: and if we look into the list, we find him the sixth in the eighteenth 73 [6. Misphragmuthosis. 7. Amosis, five Tethmosis. 8. Amenophis.] dynasty, which consists of Theban, or Diospolite kings. His son Amosis is said to have concluded the whole affair, and finally to have expelled them. Does any prince occur of the name of Amosis or Tethmosis, in this order? A person of this name appears in the same dynasty; and he is successor to the former, in conformity to the history given. It is said, that Amenophis gave the district, which the former Shepherds vacated, to the latter. As these succeeded the others very soon; is there any king of the name of Amenophis, whose reign coincides with these circumstances? Such a one very happily occurs: and he comes the very next in succession to the prince, who sent the first Shepherds away. These things surely are very plain. Why then are these kings brought so much lower than the aera allotted to the Israelites? and why have the most learned of the Fathers adjudged the departure of that people to the time of the first king of this Theban dynasty? This prince is said to have lived 74 [Theoph. ad Autolyc. L. 3. p. 392.] twenty-five years after they were retired. From hence we may be assured, that this could not be the person, with whom Moses was concerned; for that king was drowned in the Red Sea. Theophilus calls this king Amasis; and speaking of these twenty-five years, says, that he reigned that term, 75 [ Ibid.] [x]; "after he had expelled the people spoken of. This can never be made applicable to the Israelites. It cannot with any propriety be said of them, that they were expelled. They were detained against their will: and when they were suffered at last to depart, the Egyptians pursued after them, in order to bring them 76 [It may be said, that the Egyptians pressed the Israelites to depart: "And the Egyptians were urgent upon the people, that they might send them out of the land, &c." Exodus, c. 12. v. 33. But this does not come up to the real and hostile expulsion, which is mentioned by the Egyptian historians: so that the people thus forcibly expelled could not possibly be the Israelites.] back. The history certainly relates to the Cuthite Shepherds, who stood their ground, till they were actually driven away. So far, I believe, is true; that the Israelites left the country in the reign of Amasis, who was more properly called Ramases, and Ramases the son of Sethon: but this was a long time after the reign of Amos, or Amosis, who is placed at the head of the Theban dynasty.

If these great out-lines in history are so clear, as I presume them to be; it may be asked, how it was possible, for such mistakes in chronology to have arisen? What reason can be given for this wilful inconsistency? I answer with regret, that it was owing to an ill-grounded zeal in the Fathers. They laid too much stress upon the antiquity of Moses; and laboured much to make him prior to every thing in 77 [See Clemens, Tatianus, and the authors above quoted. Africanus apud Euseb. Praep. L. 10. p. 490. Justin. Martyr. Cohort, p. 13. Theophilus. L. 3. p. 393.] Greece. It had been unluckily said by Apion, that the person, who ruined Avaris, was contemporary with 78 [Syncellus. p. 62. p. 68.] Inachus of Argos. If this person were before Moses, then Inachus must also have been before him, which was not to be allowed. Hence names have been changed, and history has been perverted, to prevent this alarming circumstance. Accordingly Tatianus having gone through a long series of argument to this purpose, concludes with some triumph: 79 [Tatianus. p. 274. See Justin. Martyr. Cohort, p. 13. Theophilus supposes the Exodus to have been a thousand years before the war of Troy. L. 3. p. 393.] [x]. "Therefore it is manifest, from what has been said, that Moses was prior to the heroes, to the cities, and to the Deities (of Greece)." But truth does not depend upon priority: and the Fathers lost sight of this blessing through a wrong zeal to obtain it. They, to be sure, might plead some authority for their notions: but it was not of such weight, as to have influenced men of their learning. Manethon does most certainly say, at least as he is quoted, that the Shepherds, who were expelled, betook themselves to Jerusalem. 80 [Josephus contra Ap. L. i. p. 446.] [x]. "After the Shepherds had departed from Egypt to Jerusalem, Tethmosis, who drove them away, lived twenty-five years and four months." This one circumstance about Jerusalem has contributed beyond measure to confirm the Fathers in their mistakes. Josephus, and those who have blindly followed this authority, did not consider, that the Israelites were not driven out; that they did not go to Jerusalem; and that the king, in whose reign they departed, did not survive the event: for he perished, as has been said before. Add to this, that the same writer, Manethon, plainly shews, that the Israelites did not come into Egypt, till the reign of 80 [Josephus contra Ap. 61. p. 460. The coming of the Israelites is plainly described under the return of the first Shepherds. Many have supposed the two bodies of people to have been one and the same. They have therefore mistaken the arrival of the latter for a return of the former; and have in consequence of it much confounded their history: but the truth may be plainly discerned.] Amenophis, who was many years later: so that this history could not relate to them. He gave them the very district, which the former Shepherds had deserted. The whole account of the first Shepherds is inconsistent with the history of the latter. The Fathers often quote Apion, Ptolemy Mendesius, and Manethon, to prove that the Israelites were expelled Egypt by Amosis, or Amasis; and speak of Moses as contemporary with that king, whom they place at the head of the Theban dynasty. Thus Justin Martyr appeals to the first of those writers for the truth of this assertion. 81 [Cohort, p. 13.] [x]. According to Apion, "in the time of Inachus of Argos, and in the reign of Amasis of Egypt, the Israelites left that country under the conduct of Moses. He quotes for the same purpose Polemo, and Ptolemy Mendesius. But the history could never be as we find it here represented. We have a long account of the Shepherds in Manethon; who says not a word of what is here mentioned of the Israelites; but contradicts it in every point. Apion likewise expressly tells us, that Amosis was the person who ruined Avaris; which, we know, was afterwards given to the later Shepherds. And so far is he from referring the departure of this people to the reign of the first Diospolite king in the eighteenth dynasty, that he supposes the Exodus to have been in the 82 [Josephus contra Ap. L. i. p. 469.] seventh Olympiad, which was many centuries later.

The Fathers do not always quote precisely; but often put their own inferences for the words of their author. Ptolemy, Apion, and others mention, that a people called Shepherds were driven out of Egypt in the reign of Amosis. These Shepherds, say Theophilus and Tatianus, were the Jews: therefore the Jews left the country in the reign of that king: and as they were conducted by Moses, it is plain, say they, from Apion, that Moses was contemporary with 83 [The same history is quoted from different writers with a similarity of language, which is very suspicious. Thus Ctesias is by Clemens made to give the same account as we have had from the writers of Egypt. [x]. Strom. L. i. p. 379. It is very extraordinary, that so many foreign writers should uniformly refer Moses to Inachus; as it is a point of little consequence to any, but those, who wanted to enhance the antiquity of the former. To the same purpose Apion, Polemo, and Ptolemy Mendesius are quoted. Yet I am persuaded, that the ancient Egyptians knew nothing of Argos; nor of Inachus, the supposed king of it. See Justin Martyr. Cohort, p. 13.] Amosis. In like manner Josephus tells us, that, according to Manethon, the Jews were driven out of Egypt in the reign of king 84 [Contra Ap. L. i. p. 469.] Tethmosis. Now the passage, to which he alludes, is preserved in his own works at 85 [Ibid. p. 444.] large: and not a syllable does Manethon there say about either Jew or Israelite. He gives quite a different history. And though his account is very incorrect, yet so much we may plainly learn from him, that the Israelites came into Egypt in the time of Amenophis, the eighth king of the Diospolite dynasty; and they likewise left the country in the reign of Amenophis, sometimes rendered by mistake Amenophthes. This was not the same prince, but one long after, whose son was Sethon, called also Ramases Sethon, from Rampses (the same as Ramases), the father of 86 [Ibid. p. 461.] Amenophis.

If then we recapitulate the principal facts, which relate to the ancient history of Egypt, we shall find that they happened in the following order. After that the Mizraim had been for some time settled in that country, they were invaded by the Shepherds, those Cuthites of Babylonia. These held the region in subjection; and behaved with much cruelty to the natives. They were at last opposed; and by king Misphragmuthosis reduced to great straits, and besieged in their strong hold Avaris. His son Amosis, the Tethmosis of Africanus, pressed them so closely, that they were glad to come to terms of composition. He agreed to let them go unmolested, if they would immediately leave the country. Upon this the whole body retired, after having been in possession of Egypt above two hundred and fifty years. To Amosis succeeded Amenophis; who is said to have given their deserted town and district to the Israelitish Shepherds. These came into the country from Canaan about thirty years after the exit of the 87 [This I have shewn before. The Old Chronicle makes the residence of the first Shepherds in Egypt to have been but 217 years: but I believe that it is a mistake for 271. This would make the interval 25 years between the departure of the first, and arrival of the second Shepherds.] former. They resided here two hundred and sixteen years; and then they too retired in the reign of Amenophis, the son of Rampses, and father of Ramases Sethon. Such is the history, which is given by 89 [Apud Josephum cont. Ap. L. i. p. 461.] Manethon, Apion, and other writers. That we may know in what degree this accords with the dynasty of princes transmitted by Africanus, Eusebius, and Syncellus, it will be proper to lay before the reader a list of the first kings, as we find it exhibited by those writers. I have shewn, that the first dynasty consisted of the Demigods, or Auritae; called also the Hellenic and Phoenician Shepherds, who took Memphis. The next dynasty was of Diospolite or Theban princes, who were of the Mizraim race, and expelled the former. And as the person, who drove them away, was Amosis, or Tethmosis, the son of Misphragmuthosis, that king, and all above him, should be placed collateral with the Shepherd dynasty, as being synchronical. Indeed there is reason to think, that most, if not all, of the five, which precede are spurious; being for the most part the same names placed here by 90 [Halisphragmuthosis, Tethmosis, Amenophis, have been placed at the head of the dynasty, to raise the antiquity of Moses. The same names occur again in the same list, and nearly in the same order, below. What was truly said of the first Shepherds, and their expulsion under Tethmosis, and Amosis, has been anticipated, and attributed to the Israelitish Shepherds: and the name of the same king has been repeated, and placed at the top of the list.] anticipation; and having the same history repeated. I shall therefore begin with Misphragmuthosis; as with him the true Egyptian history commences; but will first give the dynasty of the Shepherds.

The First Dynasty of Kings in Egypt; consisting of Hellenic and Phenician Shepherds, who were Foreigners, and took Memphis.

Manethon / Africanus.

Salatis - - - 19 / Saites - - - 19
91 [Many of these mistakes, with which these lists abound, are owing to the ignorance of transcribers and editors: of which we have a flagrant instance before us. After Salatis, in three copies, we find the Shepherd king called Baeon and Bnon. But this is a manifest blunder. There was a second king in the dynasty; but the chronologers could not arrive at his name. They therefore put him down B. [x]: "the second king is anonymous:" and so it occurs in Eusebius. But in the other lists it is altered to [x]; and has passed for a proper name. See Marsham's Chron. p, 100. The mistake is as old as Josephus.] Beon - - - 44 m. 7 / Byon - - - 44
Apachnas - - - 36 m. 7 / Pachnas - - - 61
Apophis - - - 61 / Staan - - - 50
Ianias - - - 50 m. 1 / Archles - - - 49
Assis - - - 49 m. 2 / Aphobis - - - 61
259 / 284

Eusebius. / Syncellus.

Saites - - - 19 / Silites - - - 19
Anon - - - 43 / Baeon - - - 44; Apachnas - - - 36
Aphophis - - - 14 / Aphophis - - - 61
Anchles - - - 30 / Sethos - - - 50; Kertus - - - 29; Aseth - - - 20
106 / 259

The Second Dynasty, consisting of Diospolite, or Theban Kings.

According to 92 [Contra Ap. L. i. p. 446.] Josephus from Manethon. / According to 95 [Syncellus. p. 72.] Africanus in Syncellus.

Halisphragmuthosis - - - 25 m. 10 / Misphragmuthosis - - - 26
Thmosis - - - 9m. 8 / Tethmosis - - - 9
Amenophis - - - 30 m. 10 / Amenophis - - - 31
Orus - - - - 36m. 5 / Orus - - - 37
Acencres - - - 12m. 1 / Acherres - - - 32
Rathotis - - - 9 / Rathos - - - 6
Achencheres - - - 12m. 5 / Chebres - - - 12
Achencheres - - - 12m. 3 / Acherres - - - 12
Armais - - - 4m. 1 / Armeses - - - 5
Rhamesses - - - 1m. 4 / Rhammeses - - - 1
Rhamesses Miamun - - - 66m. 2 / Amenoph - - - 19
Amenophis - - - 19m. 6 / --
93 [Ibid. p. 460.] Sethon AEgyptus - - - 59 / --
Rampses - - - 66 / --
Amenophis - - - 00 / --
94 [Ibid. p. 461.] Ramesses Sethon - - - 00 / --

-- / Third Dynasty.

-- / Sethos - - - 51
-- / Rapsaces - - - 61
-- / Ammenephthes - - - 20
-- / Rhameses - - - ?

According to 96 [Euseb. Chron. p. 16.] Eusebius. / According to 97 [Theophilus ad Autol. L. 3. p. 392.] Theophilus Antiochenus.

Misphragmuthosis - - - 26 / Methrammuthosis - - - 20 m. 10
Tuthmosis - - - - 9 / Tythmosis - - - 9m. 8
Amenophis - - - 31 / Damphenophis - - - 30m. 10
Orus - - - 36 / Orus - - - 35 m. 5
Achencerses - - - 12 / Ori Filia - - - 10 m. 3
Athoris - - - 39 / Mercheres - - - 12 m. 3
Chencheres - - - 16 / Armais - - - 30 m. 1
Acherres - - - 8 / Messes - - - 6m. 2
Cherres - - - 15 / Rhamesses - - - 1m. 4
Armais - - - 5 / Amenophis - - - 19m. 6
Ammeses - - - 68 / Thoessus - - - 5
Menophis - - - 40 / Rhamessus - - - 5
-- / Sethos AEgyptus - - - ?

Third Dynasty. / --

Sethos - - - 55 / --
Rapses - - - 66 / --
Ammenophthis - - - 40 / --
Ammenemmes - - - 26 / --

Some of these names by collating may be corrected; and each of the authors quoted will contribute towards it. At present each specimen abounds with mistakes. Tythmosis, Tethmosis and Thmosis, seem to have been originally Thamosis; probably the same as Thamus, and Thamuz. Menophis, Amenephthes, and Amenophthes are undoubtedly mistakes for 98 [To say the truth, I believe that Menophis is the original name. It was a divine title, like all the others; and assumed by kings. It was properly Menophis, five Menes Pytho, vel Menes Ophion: and it originally was a title given to the person commemorated under the character of Noe Agathodaemon, changed by the Greeks to Neo. See Vol. II. Plate VI. p. 336.] Amenophis, as it is rendered in Josephus. Rathos, and Rathotis, are for Rathor, and Rathoris: and those again are for Athor and Athoris. Chebres of Africanus should be altered to Cheres, the same as Sol. The whole list is made up of divine titles. Cheres is sometimes compounded Chan-Cheres; and expressed Achancheres; all of which are the same title. Messes, Ammeses, and Armeses, are all mistakes for Rameses, either abridged, or transposed; as may be shewn from Theophilus. Armais, and Armes, seem to be the same as Hermes. Raphaces, and Rapses are by Josephus more correctly rendered Rampses. Thoesus in Theophilus is a transposition, and variation of Sethos, the same as Sethon, whom he very properly, in another place, styles Sethos Egyptus. As these names may, I think, to a degree of certainty be amended, I shall endeavour to give a more correct list, as I have presumed to form it upon collation.

1. Misphragmuthosis.
2. Thamosis; Amosis of Clemens and others.
3. Amenophis.
4. Orus.
5. Chan-Cheres.
6. Athoris.
7. Chancheres 2.
8. Chancheres 3.
9. Armes, or Hermes.
10. Rhameses.
11. Amenophis.

Dynasty the Third.

1. Sethos AEgyptus.
2. Rampses, the same as Rhameses.
3. Amenophis.
4. Rhamases Sethon.

But though this list may be in some degree corrected; yet we may still perceive a great difference subsisting among the writers above, and particularly in the numbers. The only method of proceeding in these cases, where we cannot obtain the precision, we could wish, is to rest contented with the evidence, which is afforded; and to see, if it be at all material. We are told, that Misphragmuthosis was the person, who gave the Shepherds the first notable defeat: and we accordingly find him in the subsequent dynasty to the Shepherds. Next to him stands his son Themosis, who drove them out of the country. The Israelites came soon after, in the reign of Amenophis, who gave them a place of habitation. In conformity to this, we find, that Amenophis comes in the list immediately after Themosis, or Tethmosis: all which is perfectly consonant to the history before given. This people resided in the country about two hundred and sixteen years; and departed in the reign of Amenophis, the father of Rameses 99 [[x]. Josephus contra Ap. L. i. p. 460. Rhamesses seems to have reigned with his father. He is called Rhameses, and Rhamasis; and is undoubtedly the person alluded to by Clemens, and others, under the name of Amasis; in whose time they suppose the Exodus to have been. See Strom. L. i. p. 378. Of Rhamasis, they formed Amasis, which they changed to Amosis, and thus raised the aera of Moses to an unwarrantable height.] Sethon. We find, that the eleventh king is Amenophis; and he is succeeded by Sethos: by which one might be induced to think, that this was the person alluded to. But upon due examination, we shall find, that this could not be the king mentioned; for he was not the father of the person, who succeeded him. We find in Eusebius, and Syncellus, that at Sethos AEgyptus, a new dynasty commenced, which is properly the third. Josephus takes no notice of this circumstance: yet he gives a true list of the first kings, who are

100 [Sethon AEgyptus. Cont. Ap. L. 1. c. 460.] Sethon AEgyptus.
Ramases Sethon.

The third of these is the Amenophis spoken of by Manethon, in whose reign the Israelites left Egypt: for he is the father of the Ramases called Sethon. In respect to the numbers annexed to each king's name, they are so varied by different writers, that we cannot repose any confidence in them. I therefore set them quite aside; and only consider the numbers of the kings, who reigned from Amenophis the first to Amenophis the father of Rhamases. I find them to amount to twelve inclusive. If then we allow twenty years to each king, the reigns will amount to two hundred and forty years. And as we do not know the year of the first Amenophis, in which the Israelites entered Egypt; nor the year of the latter king, in which they departed; if we make proper allowance for this, the sum of the years will correspond very well with the sojourning of the people in that country; which was two hundred and fifteen years.

Manethon tells us, as I have observed before, that the Amenophis, in whose reign the Israelites left Egypt, preceded Rhamases Sethon. In his reign they were led off, under the 1 [Manethon has confounded the history of Joseph, and Moses, of which I have before taken notice. He allows, that a person called Moses led off the Israelites; but supposes that this was a secondary name. [x]. Ibid.] "conduct of Moses." It is to be observed, that Manethon styles this king "the father of Sethon." This is the reason, why I do not think, that the former Amenophis was the person spoken of. Sethon Egyptus, who succeeded that Amenophis, was of another dynasty, consequently of another family, and could not be his son: for new dynasties commence with new families. This, I imagine, was the prince, who is alluded to in Scripture; where it is said, that 2 [Exodus, c. i. v. 8.] "there arose up a new king over Egypt, who knew not Joseph." He was not acquainted with the merits of Joseph, because he was the first king of a new dynasty; and of a different family from those, who had been under such immediate obligations to the Patriarch. In the ancient histories there is a distinction made between the Mizraim and the Egyptians: and the former were looked upon as prior in time. Thus in the Old Chronicle, the reigns of the kings are divided into three classes: the first of which is of the Auritae; the next of the Mizraim; and the third of the Egyptians. Here is a difference expressed between the two latter; and it may not be easy to determine, wherein it consisted. Those, so particularly styled Egyptians, were probably of Lower 3 [The region of Delta seems to be particularly denoted under the name of AEgyptus. The words [x], relate only to Lower Egypt. In like manner [x], expressions used by Herodotus, and Diodorus, have a like reference to the same part of the country, and to that only.] Egypt; and of a more mixed family, than those Mizraim, who were of the superior region, called Sait. Of these the Cunic, or Royal, Cycle consisted; and the supremacy was in their family for some generations. But a change of government ensued; and the chief rule came into the hands of the [x], Egyptians, of whom 4 [[x]. Josephus cont. Ap. L. 1. p. 447. [x]. Theophil. ad Autol. L. 3. p. 392.] Sethon, called AEgyptus, was the first monarch. This new dynasty was the third: but according to the common way of computation it was reputed the nineteenth. Hence in the Latin version of the Eusebian Chronicle the author tells us very truly, 5 [Euseb. Chron. Lat. p. 17.] AEgyptii per nonam decimam dynastiam suo imperatore uti coeperunt; quorum primus Sethos. [Google translate: the Egyptians during their ninth dynasty emperor they began to use it; the first of whom was Sethos.] We find, that the genuine race of Egyptian monarchs did not commence before Sethon. He was of a different family from the former, and undoubtedly the person styled a new king, who was not acquainted with the merits of Joseph; and who unjustly enslaved the children of Israel. To him succeeded Rampses; and next after him came that Amenophis, in whose reign I have shewn that the Exodus happened under Moses.

I wish that I could proceed, and with any degree of accuracy settle the dynasties downward; that the whole of the Egyptian chronology might be established. But as this is a work which will require much time, and more sagacity, than I can pretend to, I shall leave it to be executed by others. I flatter myself, that it may one day be effected; though there will certainly be great difficulty in the execution. The Exodus is supposed to have happened 1494 years before the birth of Christ. As this event has been mistaken for the retreat of the first Shepherds, and adjudged to the reign of the first Amosis; it has been carried upwards too high by two hundred and fifty years. In consequence of this, the writers, who have been guilty of this anticipation, have taken pains to remedy the mistake, which they found must ensue in chronological computation. But this was healing one evil by introducing a greater. They saw from their commencing so high, that the years downwards were too many for their purpose. They have therefore, as we have reason to fear, omitted some kings; and altered the years of others; in order that the aera of Amosis may be brought within a proper distance, and accord with the year of Christ. By means of these changes, the kings of Africanus differ from those of Eusebius; and the years of their reigns still vary more. Syncellus has formed a list of his own: upon what authority I know not; wherein there are still greater variations: so that there sometimes occur three or four princes in a suite, of which there are no traces in the foregoing writers. Thus every one has endeavoured to adapt the chronology of Egypt to his own prejudices; which has introduced infinite confusion. Of this Sir John Marsham very justly complains. 6 [Marsham. Can. Chron. p. 7.] His modis luculentissimae AEgypti antiquitates, [x] misere vexatae, spissis involutae sunt tenebris; ab ipsis temporum interpretibus; qui omnia susque deque permiscuerunt. [Google translate: in the most clear ways the antiquities of Egypt, [x] miserably harassed, thick they are enveloped in darkness; by the interpreters of the times themselves; who mingled all things and about.] Upon Syncellus he passes a severe censure. 7 [Ibid.] Reges comminiscitur, qui neque apud Eusebium sunt, neque Africanum: annosque et successiones mutilat, vel extendit, prout ipsi visum est, magna nominum, maxima numerorum interpolatione. [Google translate: He invents kings who do not they are with Eusebius, and not Africanus; their age and succession mutilates or stretches, as they have seen, great of names, by the interpolation of the largest numbers.] It must be confessed, that there is too much truth in this allegation; though we are in other respects greatly indebted to this learned chronologer. The person, to whom we are most obliged, is Eusebius: for he went very deep in his researches; and has transmitted to us a noble collection of historical records, which without him had been buried in oblivion. But even Eusebius had his prejudices, and has tried to adapt the history of Egypt to some preconceived opinions. Hence he laboured to enhance the antiquity of Moses: and not considering that the Shepherd kings were the first who reigned in Egypt, he has made it his business to authenticate sixteen antecedent dynasties, which never existed. Hence the annals of this country have been carried up higher than the aera of 8 [According to Africanus, Menes preceded Conchares in the Cunic cycle, no less than 3835 years.] creation; and have afforded embarrassment to men of the greatest learning. They have likewise afforded handle to ill disposed persons to arraign the credibility of the Mosaic history; and to call in question the authenticity of the Scriptures in general. Some have had suspicions, that these dynasties were not genuine; and would gladly have set them aside. But suspicions are not sufficient to make void such a portion of history. It has been my endeavour to detect the fallacy, and to shew manifestly, that they are spurious: and I hope, that the authorities, to which I appeal, have sufficiently proved it.
Site Admin
Posts: 34238
Joined: Thu Aug 01, 2013 5:21 am


Return to Ancien Regime

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 10 guests