Page images
[ocr errors]

if their wants, in the various periods of their existence, were not for the Universal Magazine. different from those of their infancy. It is not, therefore, necef- EXTRACT OP TWO MEMOIRS sary to mention here that kind of

RELATIVE TO EGYPT; ONE delicacy of judgement in animals ON THE LAKE OF MENZALEH, which properly belongs to reflexion THE OTHER ON THE VALand thought, objects which have LEY OF THE LAKES OF NAbeen admirably illustrated by Locke, TRON, &c. BY GENERAL Condillac, Charles Bonnet, Kant,&c. ANDREOSSY.

The admission of instinct, therefore, rejects all innate ideas, a the THE Delta, properly speaking, ory which has been completely re- is, as is well known, that part of futed by Locke. It is coeval with Lower Egypt which is comprised organization; modified by that, it between the two principal branches consequently depends upon parti- of the Nile ; namely, the western, cular conformation : it may be which descends to Rosetta, and the changed by destroying the organs, eastern, which flows into the sea at because we change the animal at Lesbos, below Damietta. To the the same time that we take from east of this last branch, and confehim wants, give him other senti- quently beyond the Delta, is a lake ments, other pleasures, &c. The of great extent, which proceeds in eunuch retains nothing of love, but a parallel direction towards the fea, the passions of envy and jealousy; and is feparated from it only by a the instinct of beings varies also in strip of low earth, fteril, and at difproportion as the oinnipotent hand ferent places narrow. In ancient of Time changes us, and deprivestimes it took its name from the city us gradually of our exterior life. of Tennys; but it is now called the There would be other alterations in Lake of Menzaleh. our instinct, if we could acquire a No modern traveller has been greater number of senses.

able to procure any correct inIt results from what has been formation relative to this lake, on faid above, that sensibility consti- account of the savage and ferocitutes instinct in an organised, living ous habits of the people who inhabody ; that this sensibility is the bits its borders, or who fail upon principle of life in them, some effects its waters; but the operations of of which we are acquainted with, the French army in Egypt rendered but are totally ignorant of the pri- it necessary to reconnoitre it à la mitive and original cause; that militaire, and General Andréofly man is provided as well as animals was entrusted with the execution of with a kind of forelight which en- this project. sures his fafety, and teaches him D'Anville, notwithstanding the the most effectual method of secur- extent of his researches, and the ing it; that, independently of in- accuracy of his observations, could ftinct, animals have likewise moral not avoid committing fome errors knowledge, which is acquired, and in his map of Egypt. He gave to is indifpenfably requisite for them the sake of which we are now through their life; but that man is speaking the form of an elliptical infinitely fuperior in organization, and consequently, in the aggregate, thière, hauptsächlich ihre Kunfriebe," of knowledge and reason*. Yours, (Hamburg, 1760, 8vo.) admits instinct ia arch; he omitted to mark down to guage, which is the name girea to the north-eatt of the Menzaleh a a modern city built in the neighbour. very confiderable peninsula, which, hood of its ruins. This mouth, projecting into the lake, divides it however, is not so obftructed a into two unequal bays, the largest present, but that the boats of the of which is to the east. He makes lake Menzaleh are enabled to pala no mention of the two villages of through it, in order to carry on a Matharich, which are nearly con- contraband intercourse with Syria tiguous to this peninsula, though The waters of the Nile flow alfo they are, by their position and nu. into this lake by four different camerous population, very importnals or branches, and the canal ant places, and occupy the only in- correspond so exa&tly with the habited itands which there now are mouths of which we have juft spoken, on the lake. Lastly, the dimen- that there is reason to believe, that, fions which this celebrated geogra- previous to the exiftence of the pher has given to the Menzaleh Lake Menzaleh, these canals prodiffer greatly from those which the ceeded as far as the sea, by crossing engineers accompanying Andréosly that part of terra firma which is bave laid down in a map that they now covered with the lake. The drew by his order's, and which is most eastern of these branches is laid subjoined to the memoir we are down in D'Anville's map. Genenow analyfing.

man; but this German theologian wrongly TIRASYMACHUS.

denies to animals the intellectual know

ledge which Condillac, and many others, * Herm. Samuel Reimarus, in his All. have justly attributed to them. See also gemeine Betrachtungen uber die triebe der Mélanges de Littérature," vol. 111.

ral Andréofly had no occafion to Whilst D'Anville, for example, examine it, but he has described gives more than fifty-seven thou- the other three, which are called fand toiles from the square tower Moez, Achmoum, and Farekoet. below Lesbos to the inouth Pélusin., The breadth of the canal of Moer que, its total extent, according to is from fifty to one hundred and the map of Andréofly, is no inore twenty mètres* ; its depth three or than forty-five thousand lix hun four. During the overflow, it empdred and seventy-seven toises. ties a considerable body of water

In the course of this extent, the into the Lake. On its right bank narrow neck of land opens in four are the ruins of the great and imdifferent places, which produces a portant city of Tanis, now Sann, or communication with the sea. One Samna, where the filhermen of the of these openings is blocked up by lake carry their falt fish, which an artificial bank. The three others they exchange for dates, that may be entered by boats. The are brought thither from Sakehich : nearest to Damietta is called Dy- add to this, that it is impossible béh; it is the same with the Mende- not to discern in this canal the han Mouth of the antients. It was antient Tanitic branch ; but it is through this that the author enter- much more difficult to decide which ed on the lake. The second, of the other two may be regarded which is the antient Tanitic Mouth, as the antient Mendefian branch. is called Omm-Faredje. The third, On that which is called the Ca. and which is the most eafterly, is nal of Achmoum is situated the the Pelusan Mouth of the antientscity of Menzaleh, which has given It was quite navigable in the time its name to the whole lake; and of Alexander, since it was by this its inhabitants, which amount to very mouth that the conqueror about two thousand, together with penetrated into Egypt: though they foon filled it with mud, as the word peluse sufficiently indicates,

* The mètre is one of the new French

' measures of length, introduced by the revo. which has this signification in Greek, lution; it is equal to 99,37023 E. inches, as well as Tineh in the Arabic lan. oz 3 feet 11,296 lines, French. Editer.

those of Matharyeh, amounting been the continuation and conclunearly to eleven hundred, assume fion of different canals or branches the exclusive right of fishing with by which the Nile empties its wafive or fix hundred boats, of which ters. By founding carefully along they are the proprietors. They that dire&ion, where, it is proba. cxclude entirely the other riverains, ble; was once the antient Tanitic who are estimated at nearly thirty branch, General Andréofly difco

thousand : their chief, the Sheik vered beneath the waters of the · Hhaçan Toubar, draws from this lake, along its whole course, a canal

fithery an immenfe profit, as the palbably deeper than the rest... lake is extremely abundant. A At a very little distance likewise great part of the fish is exported in from this line are to be found the a salted state.

ruins of Tennys and of Thounals, The peninsula of Menzaleh pof- These two cities certainly were not seffes fome very fine rice fields, as built in the lake; they exifted prewell as that of Damietta; there are vious to its formation : probably also two marais falans.

they were placed on the banks of The water of the lake is brackish, the Tanitic branch; if they were except towards the mouth of the elevated above the waters of the canal, which renders it fit to drink lake, it is because, like all the cifor a considerable distance, accord- ties of Egypt wbich are within the ing to the Nile's greater or less vo- bounds of the periodical overflow lume of water,

of the Nile, they were placed on This lake contains many illands, artificial piles, and the earth was all of which are fteril and uninha- increased by the addition of rub, bited, with the exception of those bish. of Matharyeh. Two of these From an attentive consideration islands deserve a particular defcrip- of all these facts, we inay safely tion, because they present to us conclude, with our author, that the ruins of two cities once con- the lake of Menzaleh bas been profiderable: Tennys, which formerly duced by the destruction of the gave its name to the lake, and equilibrio between the waters of the Thounah.

sea, and of the Tanitic, Mendelian, General Andréofly makes an ob- and Pelusian branches. servation on the origin of the lake But where did this arise? Gen. of Menzaleh, which is perfe&ly in Andréofly attributes this event to unison with the different facts that various causes; one of the princiwe have brought forward. This pal was probably the increase of lake, which at first night appears to the branch of Damielta, which. possess some circumstances fimilar excavated at first by human hands. to those which are observable on has progreslively enlarged itself from the banks of the ci-devant Lan- the most eastern branches of the guedoc, does not, however, owe its Nile; which, finding themselves origin to the same cause. It is not weakened, could no longer oppose a diminution of the sea; as a proof the infux of the sea, particularly of this, it is sufficient to examine at that season when it is driven to. the nature of its bottom, where the wards the coast of Egypt by the mud of the Nile is always to be north-east winds. There waters found ; but to this grand and pri- having broken their way into the mary evidence the author adds va- interior, found no difficulty in hola rious other proofs. We have seen lowing out a depth of one or two that the present mouths of this lake .mètres, which was fulficient in a clearly demonstrate, by their poli foil naturally fo low and loose for tion and direction, that they have producing the lake of Menzaleh.,

In order to drain this lake, it the province of Maryouth (Maretwill be necessary to edge with tis). Unfortunately, the exiting ditches the bed of the intersecting circumstances would not allow the branches of the Nile; contract, by French favans who visited the lakes degrees, lhat of the branch of Da- of Natron, to follow the course of mietta; and introduce into the the vallies, from their cominencefpace comprised between these dit- ment at the sea, to the spot where ferent branches the water of the they divide from the valley of the Nile impregnated with time, thus Nile. But this research, which is forming an annual deposit which so important with regard to the anwould progreslively increase the tient geopraphy of Egypt, cannot foil. Such are the means by which, fail of being completed by thosc according to our author, this great who may visit Fayoam, and we enterprize might be effected. shall then know, with certainty,

General Andréoffy, in his first whatever can be known as to this Memoir, bas defcribed a country Jake Maris, on which so many by. which the Nile has laid under wa- potheses may be formed. ter; that which forms the object of General Andréofily points out, the second Memoir, appears, on both from the general aspect of the the contrary, to have been vacated country and from the accounts of by this river.

antient historians, two epochs, at There is to be found, in the de- which the waters of the Nile bave fert of Lybia, to the west of Lower been directed towards the eaft; the Egypt, two parallel vallies conti. first was, wben they banked up, guous to each other, and which that branch which can eitber enproceed from the south-east to the tirely or in part across the deserts morth west ; the one is known by of Lybia, by the two vallies of the appellation of the Lakes of Na- which we have just been speaking, tron, and the other, which is be- The second was, when they deyond the first, on the side of Egypt, stroyed the bed which it had formis denominated, by geographers, ed in the weftern part of its pre. Balır-Bela-Mê, i. e. the water. fent bafin, along the hills of Ly. less riter. These two vallies, which bia, where may yet be seen the vel are separated only by a narrow tiges of a very great current. bank, seem to have served as a After this geological digrefhon, basis for the waters of the Nile, at we Mall follow the ingenious traleast partially, before the antient vellers in their visit to the lakes of kings of Egypt were able entirely Natron and the Coptic convents. to direct this river into the valley The valley which contains them is which it now occupies. The form about fix myriametres towards the of these vallies, the name of the banks of the Nile; they are sepaWaterlefs Rirer, the vertebræ of rated by a vast eminence, which is fish which our travellers have found nearly level, though agitated by there, as well as whole petrified undulations similar to the sea; the trees, may be considered as very wind discovered in some places the strong presumptions. The general calcareous rock of which it is comopinion is, that in proceeding up posed, by removing the fine sand, these vallies we arrive at Fayoum and throwing it into the valley of (formerly the Nôme Arsinoite, where Egypt, where it forms hills, and was the lake Mæris), and that in destroys a great portion of the aragoing down them we reach the sea ble land. The inhabitants of Egypt at the bottom of the Arabian gulf look forward with terror to the (Plinthinetes Sinus), some distance final encroachments of these fands, to the west of Alexandria, beyond which threaten to cover their whole

« PreviousContinue »