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GATE OF THE LIUN.
interstices were fillecl have mostly disappeared. The southern ramparts of the citadel and all the other walls follow the natural irregularity of the precipice on which they stand. At
its eastern point it is attached by a narrow isthmus to the mountain. It is a long irregular triangle, standing nearly east and west. The walls are mostly of welljointed polygonal stones, although the rough construction occasionally appears. The general thickness of the walls is 21 ft., in some places 25; their present height, in the most perfect part, is 43 ft. There are, in some places, very slight projections from the walls, resem. bling towers, whereof the most perfect one is at the south-east angle, its breadth being 33 ft. and its height 43 ft. The size of the block whereon the lions are sculptured is 11 ft. broad at the base,
9 ft. high, and about 2 ft. thick, Fig. 13.
of a triangular form suited to the recess made for its reception. This block, in its appearance, resembles the green basalt of Egypt.
35. In this place we think it proper to notice a building at Mycene, which has been called by some the Treasury of Atreus, or the tomb of his son Agamemnon mentioned by
Pausanias. This building at first misled some authors into a belief that the use of the arch was known in Greece at a very early period; but examination of it shows that it was formed by horizontal courses, projecting beyond each other as they rose, and not by radiating joints or beds, and that the surface was afterwards formed so as to give the whole the appearance of a pointed dome, by cutting away the lower angles
(fig. 14.). It is probably the most ancient of buildings in Greece; and it is a curious circumstance that at New Grange, near Drogheda, in Ireland, there is a monument whose form, construction, and plan of access resemble it so strongly that it is impossible to consider their similarity the result of accident.
sentation of this may be seen in the work by Mr. Higgins which we have so often quoted, and will, we think, satisfy the reader of the great probability of the hypothesis hereinbefore assumed having all the appearance of truth. By the subjoined plan (fig. 15.) it will be seen that a space 20 ft. wide, between the two walls, conducts us to the entrance, which is 9 ft. 6 in. at the base, 7 ft. 10 in. at the top, and about 19 ft. high. The entrance passage is 18 ft. long and leads to the main chamber, which, in its general form, has some resemblance to a bee-hive, whose diameter is about 48 ft, and height about 49. (fig. 16.) The blocks are placed in courses as above shown, 34 courses being at present visible. They are laid with the greatest
precision, without cement, and are unequal in size. Their Fig. 15. PLAN O TRHASURY OF ATREUs. average height may be taken at 2 ft., though to a spectator on the floor, from the effect of the perspective, they appear to diminish very much towards the vertex. This monument has a second chamber, to which you enter on the right from the larger one just described. This is about 27 ft. by 20, and 19 ft. high ; but its walls, from the obstruction of the earth, are not visible. The doorway to it is 9 ft. high, 4 ft. 7 in. wide at the base, and 4 ft. 3 in. at the top. Similar to the larger or principal doorway, it has a triangular opening over its lintel. The stones which fitted into these triangular openings were of enormous dimensions, for the height of that over the principal entrance is 12 ft., and its breadth 7 ft. 8 in. The vault has been either lined with metal or ornamented with some sort of decorations, inasmuch as a number of bronze nails are found fixed in the stones up to the summit. The lintel of the door consists of two pieces of stone, the largest whereof is 27 ft. long, 17 ft. wide, and 3 ft. 9 in. thick, calculated, therefore, at 133 tons weight; mass which can be compared with none ever used in building, except those at Balbec ana in Egypt. The other lintel is of the same height, and probably (its ends are hidden) of
TREASURY OF ATREUS.
the saine length as the first. Its breadth, however, is only one foot. Its exterior has two parallel mouldings, which are continued down the jarnbs of the doorway.
Fig. 16. 36. The stone employed is of the hard and beautiful breccia, of which the neighbouring rocks, and the contiguous Mount Eubora, consist. It is the hardest and compactest breccia
which Greece produces, resembling the antique marble called Breccia Tracagnina antica, sometimes found among the ruins of Rome. Near the gate lie some masses of rosso antico decorated with guilloche-like and zigzag ornaments, and a colunnar base of a Persian character. Some have supposed that these belonged to the decorations of the door. way ; but we are of a different opinion, inasmuch as they destroy its grand character. We think if this were the tomb of Agamemnon, they were much more likely to have been a part of the shirine in which the body or ashes were deposited.
37. It is conjectured that the trea. sury of Minyas, king of Orchomenos, whereof l'ausanias speaks, bore a resemblance to the building we have just described ; and it is very probable that all the subterranean chambers of Greece, Italy, and Sicily were very similarly constructed. Fig. 17. represents the entrance to the building frou the out. side. As the architecture of the early races whereof we have been speaking
will be further discussed in investi. Fig. 17.
gating other monuments, we do not think it necessary to enlarge further in this place on what we have termed Pelasgie or Cyclopean architecture.
TREASURY ON NINYAS.
38 The name prefixed to this section must not induce the reader to suppose we shall be able to afford him much instruction on this interesting subject. The materials are scanty; the monuments, though once stupendous, still more so. “ If ever," says Keithi, in his Evidence of the Truth of the Christian Religion, " there was a city that seemed to bid defiance to any predictions of its fall, that city was Babylon. It was for a long time the most famous city in the Old World. Its walls, which were reckoned among the wonders of the world, appeared rather like the bulwarks of nature than the workmanship of man.” The city of Babylon is thus described by ancient writers. It was situated in a plain of vast extent, and divided into two parts by the river Euphrates, which was of considerable width at the spot. The two divisions of the city were connected by a massive bridge of masonry strongly connected with iron and lead; and the embankments to prevent inroads of the river were formed of the same durable materials as the walls of the city. Ilerodotus says that the city itself was a perfect square enclosed by a wall 480 furlongs in circumference, which would make it eight times the size of London. It is said to have had numbers of houses three or four stories in height, and to have been regularly divided into streets running parallel with each other, and cross ones opening to the river. It was surrounded by a wide and deep trench, from the earth whereof, when excavated, square bricks were formed and baked in a furnace. With these, cemented together through the medium of heated bitumen intermixed with reeds to bind together the viscid mass, the sides of the trenches were lined, and with the same materials the vast walls above mentioned were constructed. At certain intervals watch-towers were placed, and the city was entered by 100 gates of brass. In the centre of each of the principal divisions of the city a stupenidous public monument was erected. In one (Major Rennel thinks that on the eastern side) stood the temple of Belus; in the other, within a large strongly fortified enclosure, the royal palace. The former was a square pile, each side being two furlongs in extent. The tower erected on its centre was a furlong in breadth and the same in height, thus making it higher than the largest of the pyramids, supposing the furlong to contain only 500 feet. On this tower as a base were raised, in regular succession, seven other lofty towers, and the whole, according to Diodorus, crowned with a bronze statue of the god Belus 40 feet high.
See fig. 18., in which the dotted lines show the present remains, according to Sir R. K. Porter's account in his Travels. The palace, serving also as a temple, stood on an area 1} mile square, and was surrounded by circular walls, which, according to Diodorus, were decorated with sculptured animals resembling life, painted in their natural colours, on the bricks of which they were depicted, and afterwards burnt in. Such was the city of Babylon in its meridian splendour, that city whose founder (if it were not Nimrod, sometimes called Belus,) is unknown.
Great as It was, it was enlarged by Semiramnis, and still further enlarged and fortified by Nebuchadnezzar. We shall now present, from the account of Mr. Rich, a gentleman who visited the spot early in this century, a sketch of what the city is now. The first grand mass of ruins marked A (fig. 19.), which the above gentleman describes, he says extends 1100 yards in length and 800 in its greatest breadth, in figure nearly resembling a quadrant ; its height is irregular, but the most elevated part may be about 50 or 60 ft. above the level of the plain, and it has been dug into for the purpose of procuring bricks. This mound Mr. R. distinguishes by the name of Amran. On the north is a valley 550 yards long, and then the second grand heap of ruins, whose shape is nearly a square of 700 yards long and broad; its south-west angle being connected with the north-west angle of the mounds of Amran by a high ridge nearly 100 yards in breadth. This is the place where Beauchamp made his observations, and is highly interesting from every vestige of it being composed of buildings far superior to those whereof there are traces in the eastern quarter. The bricks are of the finest description, and, notwithstanding this spot being the principal magazine of them and constantly used for a supply, are still in abundance. The operation of extracting the bricks has cause: much confusion, and increased the difficulty of deciphering the use of this mound. In some places the solid mass has been bored into, and the superincumbent strata falling in, frequently bury workmen in the rubbish. In all these excavations walls of burnt brick laid in lime mortar of a good quality are to be seen ; and ainong the ruins are to be found fragments of alabaster vessels, fine earthenware, marble, and great quantities of varnished tiles, whose glazing and colouring are surprisingly fresh.
* In a
TKPLK OY BELUS.
PLAN OY DARYLAN,
Iwllow," observes Mr. Rich,“ near the southern part, I found a sepulchral urn of earthen
ware, which had been broken in digging, and near it lay some human bones, which pulverised with the touch.” Not more than 200 yards from the northern extremity of this inound, is a ravinc near 100 yards long, hol. lowed out by those who dig for bricks, on one of whose sides a few yards of wall remain, the face whereof is clear and perfect, and appears to have been the front of some building. The opposite side is so confused a mass of rubbish, that it looks as if the ravine had been worked through a solid building. Under the foundations at the southern end was discovered a subterranean passage floored and walled with large bricks in bitumen, and covered over with pieces of sandstone a yard thick and several yards long, on which the pressure is so great as to have pushed out the side walls. What was seen was near seven feet in height, its course being to the south. The upper part of the
passage is cemented with bitumen, other parts of ibn Ali
the ravine with mortar, and the bricks have all writing on them. At the northern end of the ravine an excavation was made, and a statue of a lion of colossal dimensions, standing on a pedestal of coarse granite and rude workmanship, was discovered. This was about the spot marked E on the plan. A little to the west of the ravine at B is a remarkable ruin called the Kasr or Palace, which, being uncovered, and partly detached from the rubbish, is visible
from a considerable distance. It is “ so surprisingly fresh,” says the author, “ that it was only after a minute inspection I was satisfied of its being in reality a Babylonian remain.” It consists of several walls and piers, in some places ornamented with niches, and in others strengthened by pilasters of burnt brick in lime cement of great tenacity. The tops of the walls have been broken down, and they may have been much higher. Contiguous to this ruin is a heap of rubbish, whose sides are cariously streaked by the alternation of its materials, probably unburnt bricks, of which a small quantity were found in the neighbourhood, without however any reeds in their interstices. A little to the N. N. E. of it is the famous tree which the natives call Atheli. They say it existed in ancient Babylon, and was preserved by God that it might afford a convenient place to Ali for tying up his horse after the battle Hellah!” “ It is an ever. green,” says Mr. R., “ something resembling the lignum vitæ, and of a kind, I believe, not common in this part of the country, though I am told there is a tree of the description at Bassora.” The valley which separates the mounds just described from the river is white with nitre, and does not now appear to have had any buildings upon it except a small circular heap at D. The whole embankment is abrupt, and shivered by the action of the water. At the narrowest part E, cemented into the burnt brick wall, there were a number of urns filled with human bones which had not undergone the action of fire. From a considerable quantity of burnt bricks and other fragments of building in the water the river appears to have encroached here.
39. A mile to the north of the Kasr, and 950 yards from the bank of the river, is the last ruin of this series, which Pietro della Valle, in 1616, described as the tower of Belus, in which he is followed by Rennell. The natives call it, according to the vulgar Arab pronunciation of those parts, Mujelibè, which means overturned. They sometimes also apply the same term to the mounds of the Kasr. This is marked F on the plan. “ It is of an oblong shape, irregular in its height and the measurement of its sides, which face the car. dinal points as follows: the northern side 200 yards in length, the southern 219, the eastern 182, and the western 136. The elevation of the south-east or highest angle, 141 feet. The western face, which is the least elevated, is the most interesting on account of the appearance of building it presents. Near the summit of it appears a low wall, with interruptions, built of unburnt bricks mixed up with chopped straw or reeds and cemented with clay mortar of great thickness.” The south-west angle seems to have had a turret, the others are less perfect. The ruin is much worn into furrows, from the action of the weather, penetrating considerably into the mound in some places. The summit is covered with heaps of rubbish, among which fragments of burnt brick are found, and here and there
whole bricks with inscriptions on them. Interspersed are innumerable fragments of pottery, briek, bitumen, pebbles, vitrified brick or scoria, and even shells, bits of glass, and mother
of pearl. The north. ern face of the Mujelibé ( fig. 20.) contains a niche of the height of a man, at the back whereof a low aperture leads to a sinall cavity, whence a passage branches off to the right till it is lost in the rubbish. It is
called by the natives the serdaub or cellar, and Mr. Rich was informed that four years previous to his survey, a quantity of marble was taken out from it, and a coffin of mulberry wood, in which was contained a human body enclosed in a tight wrapper, and apparently partially covered with bitumen, which crumbled into dust on exposure to the air. About this spot Mr. R. also excavated and found a coffin containing a skeleton in high preservation, whose antiquity was placed beyond dispute by the attachment of a brass bird to the outside of the coffin, and inside an ornament of the same material, which had seemingly been suspended to some part of the skeleton. On the western side of the river there is not the slightest vestige of ruins excepting opposite the mass of Amran, where there are two small mounds of earth in existence.
40. The most stupendous and surprising mass of the ruins of ancient Babylon is situate in the desert, about six miles to the south-west of Hellah. It is too distant to be shows on the block plan above given. By the Arabs it is called Birs Nemroud; by the Jews
Nebuchadnezzar's Prison. Mr. Rich wa the first traveller who gave any accoun of this ruin, of which fig. 21. is a representation; and the description following we shall present in Mr. Rich's own words. “ The Birs Nemroud is a mound of an oblong figure, the total circumference of which is 762 yards. At the eastern side it is cloven by a deep furrow, and is not more than fifty or sixty feet high ; but at the western it rises in a conical figure to the elevation of 198 ft., and on its summit is a solid pile of brick 37 ft. high by 28 in breadth, diminishing in thickness to the top, which is broken and irregular, and rent by a large fissure extending through a third of its height. It is perforated by small square holes disposed in rhomboids. The fine burnt bricks of which it is built have inscriptions on them; and so admirable is
the cement, which appears to be lime mortar, that, though the layers are so close together that it is difficult to discern what substance is between them, it is nearly impossible to extract one of the bricks whole. The other parts of the summit of the hill are occupied by immense fragments of brickwork, of no determinate figure, tumbled together and converted into solid vitrified masses, as if they had undergone the action of the fiercest fire or been blown up with gunpowder, the layers of the bricks being perfectly discernible,-a curious fact, and one for which I am utterly incapable of accounting. These, incredible as it may seem, are actually the ruins spoken of by Pére Emanuel (Šee D'Anville, sur l'Euphrate et le Tigre), who takes no sort of notice of the prodigious mound on which they are elevated." The mound is a majestic ruin, and of a people whose powers were not lost, if the hypothesis brought before the reader in the previous section on Celtic and Druidical architecture be founded on the basis of truth, but shown afterwards, on their separation from the parent stock, in Abury, Stonehenge, Carnac, and many other places. Ruins to a considerable extent exist round the Birs Nemroud; but for our purpose it is not necessary to particularise them. The chance (for more the happiest conjecture would not warrant) of conclusively enabling the reader to come to a certain and definite notion of the venerable city, whereof it is our object to give him a faint idea, is far too indefinite to detain him and exhaust his patience. One circumstance, however, we must not omit; and again we shall use the words of the traveller to whom we are under so many obligations. They are, — “ To these ruins I must add one, which, though not in the same direction, bears such strong characteristics of a Babylonian origin, that it would be
BURS NEM ROUT.