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perspective) contains the proper name of the monarch, and the other, his titles or designations of honor. These ovals, which are always preceded by different characters, are usually coupled on the monuments of Egypt, though this is not the case in the tablet of Abydos, the greater part of which, as I have just remarked, consists of ovals containing the titles only. On other relics of antiquity, however, still extant, these titles are paired with the proper names to which they respectively belong, and these names so ascertained, being registered according to their proper places in the tablet, their true order of succession is established. A monument in the British Museum ascribed to Nectanebo, the last of the Pharaohs, will serve to illustrate these remarks. It is engraved with two ovals of the kind referred to : the first is surmounted by phonetic and symbolic characters understood to signify “ King of the obedient people, Lord of the universe,” and the oval itself contains three others interpreted—“ Sun offered to the world.” The second oval, which is placed close beside it, is preceded by symbols expressing “ Sun of the Sun, Lord of the diadems of Egypt;" and contains seven phonetic characters, supposed to indicate the proper name of the king, Nectanebo.
It were to be wished that many of these titles were more specific, as in some cases they so nearly resemble each other as to be scarcely a sufficient identification of the names to which they belong. But this is by no means the most serious objection that exists to the historical value of the tablet of Abydos. The various ovals bear no evidence of having been executed at or about the times to which they severally refer; they seem to have been all engraved at one and the same period, and have consequently nothing of that documentary character, which alone could avouch their integrity. In original pedigrees, such as those of many
of our old English families, which extend over a comparatively short space of time, a vast difference is observable in the style of blazoning the arms, and in the character of the different autographs; and these variations stamp a value and authenticity on the document, by proving the additions to have been made at various and widely-removed periods, answering to those of the facts themselves, which they record. But nothing of this sort is observable in the tablet of Abydos : it bears every appearance of having been turned out of the workman's hands in all its completeness, and this supposition once proved, is fatal to its historical value. It extends, as I have remarked, over a period of sixty-four reigns, which, at the proved average of twenty-two and a half years to each, would comprise no less than 1,440 years, so that if the last part of the tablet must be allowed to be authentic, it is very questionable whether the first has any
claim to such an honor. I have thus endeavored to clear the way by shewing that we have little information respecting Egypt, prior to about six or eight hundred years B. C., excepting that which we find in the sacred Scriptures; so that in this investigation, as in almost every other, we are thrown back upon the word of truth, if really desirous of ascertaining the facts of the case and nothing more.
It is agreed on all hands that Misraim was the founder of this ancient and interesting kingdom ; and there seems good reason for identifying him with the Men or Menes of the Greeks.
As early as the days of Abraham, a king of Egypt, called Pharaoh in the sacred Scriptures, is mentioned. The word “ Pharaoh” seems to have been rather a general title, than a proper name-pa-ouro, signifying “ the king,” in the old language of Egypt. Others derive this term from Phre, the sun, an etymology which seems to be sanctioned by the frequent use of this symbol to express the title of the early kings of that country.
Another Pharaoh is mentioned as the patron of Joseph; and the cruel monarch who persecuted the Israelites afterwards, is also designated by the same title. His name is not mentioned, though the name of one of the treasure cities, built under his directions, leads us to infer that it might have been Ramses ; especially as that name occurs more frequently than any other on the monuments of Egypt, and is written with precisely the same letters as in the original Hebrew text of the Bible R. A. M. S. S. On the tablet of Abydos alone, it occurs no fewer than fourteen times, and is every where more clearly and unequivocally expressed than any other in the whole range of Egyptian sovereigns. On the walls of a splendid temple at Medina-taboo, it occurs in connection with a very interesting sculpture, representing the monarch sitting in his war-chariot, and receiving an account of the success of his army in a recent encounter. A pile of human hands is heaped up before him, an incident quite in keeping with the cruel and despotic character assigned to him in the Bible, and officers are engaged in counting, writing, and proclaiming the numbers slain and taken prisoners.
A painting has been discovered in Egypt, which it is presumed refers to the arrival of Joseph's brethren in that country; and the picture of the Jews “labouring in brick and mortar," exactly as they are described in the sacred narrative, which was brought to light by Rossellini, is too , well known to call for any lengthened remark at this time. It may suffice to say, that it offers the most singular and interesting illustration of Scripture, with respect even to the critical meaning of the terms employed, and is altogether one of the most striking commentaries ever met with.
(To be continued next month.)
THE SEA SIDE.
Across the golden sands-
To rise on other lands.
Beyond a vaster ocean,
That uncreated light,
Their harpings day and night.
The joys that fleet and fail ;
On hopes within the veil.
THE RETURNING SINNER. “There is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that
repenteth." Luke xv, 10. Hark! by th' angelic throng of heav'n, A new melodious song
sung: What mean those bursts of holy joy,
That flow from each immortal tongue ? 'Tis Gabriel bearing home the news
Of one poor sinner brought to God; Of one that has begun to tread
The way his great Redeemer trod.