Page images

Trajan & Adrian, there were more than two miliions of souls that died a violent death. Never was the like Naughter seen before, not since,tillthe Crusado's. This could not be better represented than by a Red Horse; 'tis the .colour of Blood : or than by a Great Sword; the greater it is the better it signifies that the laughter shall be great ; or than by Mens kelling one another, that signifies civil wars. Now 'tis in civil wars that there is the greatest effusion of blood. This second horse comes out of the Western quarter. Trajan was a Native of Spain, which was the Western part of the Roman Empire,

At the opening the third seal, there comes forth out of the South at the voice of the third

living creature. Vis. A Black Horse, o be that fate on him v. 6. had a pair of Balances in his band. And I

beard a voice in the mid of the four beasts Say, A measure of wheat for a penny, es three measures of barly for a penny; & see there hurt not the Oylnor the Wine,

This certainly signifies an Empire that hath The 3d. horréis something of severity & sadness, by reason of pire of

the Black Horse. But this doth not signify Septimius. Naughter, as the Red horse of the second living Alexander Creature. This signifies alsoareign of justice, the son of where every thing is done in weight & measure, Mammaa.

&according to the Balance. Lastly, this fignifies a reign of plenty, wherin by the care of the Prince, Wheat, Barley, Oyl & Wine do abound. This the Character of the reign of Septimius Severus & of Alexander the son of


. Black Hoverity & sadnernpire that hash

Mama made exact & Ant

Alexans after them, &



Mammaa. Septimius Severus was an African
of the Province of Tripoli. Wherfore the living
Creature of the southern- quarter calls him.
Both of them were severe protectors of justice.
Both of them, & especially Alexander, were
sworn enemies to all Thieves ; publick ,
private, known, or secret , &to all people that
behaved themselves ill, & were unfaithfull'
in their offices. They made exact & strict
fearches after them, & severely punisht them. Aureliva
Alexander made even his fouldiers live in so Spartia.
great discipline, that they dared not take away
a Hen or an Apple from a Peasant ; or ifthat Seprimius..
did happen , he oftentimes punish'd them to pridium
the greatest extremity. Lastly, both of them,
both Septimius Severus & Alexander the son
of Mammaa , gave admirable Orders for the
distributing Corn, & Wine, & Oyl, to the
end all the World might have them , &
there might beno want. This is what Histo-
rians do exprefly observe.

And when he had open'd the fourth seal, e

And I looked & behold a Pale Horse , & his name that fate on him was Death , & hell followed him, & power was given to them over the fourth part of the Earth to kill with Sword,

with Hunger, & with Death, or with the Beasts of the Earth.

Behold visibly a reign fad , black, loaden The'fourth with all sorts of Calamities, Massacrees, o

So is the Em1. Effusions of Blood , Plague, War & Famin, pire of

Tyranny & Violence. "Tis the Character of
the reign of Maximini & his successors to Au- luccellors.
relian. The fourth living Creature calls this



Tyrant from the North. Thence'twas that Maximin came, who was a native of Thrace in the North of the Roman Empire. This Maximin deserved to bear the name of Death; for he was the most cruell of all Tyrants; they gave him the names of Cyclops , Bufiris, Scyron, Phalaris , Typhon & Gyges. He made men be flead & crucified alive, buried living men in the bodies of beasts, massacred, beat persons to death, without distinction of sex, age or condition. He destroyed many

thousands of men by all sorts of punishments. Julius Ca Gallienus, that is included in the Period here pirolinus. Trebel. meant, made himself remarkable also by his de 30

1° cruelty. Oftentimes he made the throats of Tyrannis. 3 or 4000. be cut in a day. In this time reign'd &in vita Gallieni. a plague of fifteen years, that began in Zofimas. Ethiopia, & ran throughout the Empire. Lipfius Lipfius de acknowledgeth history speaks not of any Constancia. 2. 23. that comes near it. There was also a very

great & a very universall famin. The BarbaHist. 1.7. 6 E. 17.

rians in the East made havok of the Empire, & horrible desolations cherin. At last there rose up near thirty tyrants in the whole extent of the Empire. One may judg what desolation that caused. Here end the four living Creatures & the four horsemen , about the end of

the third Age. V. 9. And when he had open'd the fifth seal , I

Saw under the Altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, for the

testimony which they held. V..10, And they cried with a loud voice , saying, How long; o Lord, Holy & true, doff thos



feal is


hot judg o avenge our blood on them that dwell on the Earth?

See here what clearly signifies a Period in The fifth' which the Church suffers a cruel persecution; & 'tis that which was caused by Dioclefian an's pero

S ve l'ecution, &bis successors , the moft bloody that ever was , longer & more cruell than the nine others taken together: For faith Orofius, Sulpitius

* Severus. during ten years they ceased not to burn Ocosius the Churches, to proscribe the innocent, Scaliger

9 de Emn. & to make Martyrs by Massacres & Punish- dat Teing ments. In Egypt alone were Massacred 144 1.5. thousand men, & 70 thousand were banished. Thence , comes the name of Æra Diócletiana & Æra Martyrum , an Épocha famous in the history of the Church.'

After this comesche sixth seal, under which we have faid we must find the fall of Paganism. Indeed a little time after Dioclefiani, Coria ftantine ascended the Throne of the Emperours, & made the Christian Religion reign. He & his Successors ruin'd Paganism. This fall of the Pagani Religion is thus represented to us. * And I beheld when he bad opened the fixel musi feal, & lo there was a great Eartb-quake, the Sün became black as fack-cloth of bair, is the Moon becamered as blood.

And the Stars of Heaven fell to the Eart sven as a fig-tree cafteth her untimely figs, when She is fiosaken of a mighty Wind.

And the beavens departed as a fcroll when it ose is rolled togetber, & every mountain Sisand were moved out of their places. And the Kings of the Earth , the great vs

- E 2


[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]


men , & the rich men, a the chief captains, & the mighty men, & every bond-man, 8 every free-man bid themselves in the dens ES

in the rocks of the mountains. 1:16. And said to the mountains & rocks , fall on

us , & hide us from the face of him that fittetl on the Throne , & from the wrath of the

Lamb. V. 17 For the great day of his wrath is come , 8C

who shall be able toftand? The lixth All these images are borrowed from the Trumpet last judgment, wherfore they are usually the fall of applied to it. Becaufe indeed this fall of Paganism. Paganism. is the most terrible judgment that

yet ever fell since the beginning of the World
on the Devil's Empire. We must know that
in the whole Revelation we see these three
heads reigning , the Dragon , the Beast ,
the false Prophet. The Dragon is the Devil, the
Beast is the Roman Empire, the false Prophet
is the Pope. The Dragon hath two Empires,
the First is pure Paganism, & purely Pagan.
The second is Antichristian Paganim mingled
with Christianity. See hete the fall of the
first Empire, that is the purely Pagan Empire
of the Dragon. -
: 1. There is a great Earth-quake. In the style
of the Prophets , & particularly of St. John;
an Earth -quake always signifies a Change
of the face of affairs in the world, because
Earth-quakes overturn the Earth , & make
it Change its face. Now what change of the
face of affairs in the world can be imagin?d
greater than that which happen'd under Gona


[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
« PreviousContinue »