Page images


(A) " In a city nam

are derived the fables of k6 ed Alfheim."] Alfbeim Incubuses and Sucubuses ; signifies, in Gothic, the and that general opinion Abode of the Genii, that that there were Genii or is, of the Fairies of the Sylphs of both sexes, male sex.' We may ob who did not difdain the ferve, that they are of embraces of mortals. different characters, Good With one single fiction, and Bad ; for there is no *fo fruitful as this, they probability, that any one might have run through good quality could be the whole world of naascribed to creatures ture, and not have left a blacker than pitch. It is fingle phænomenon unacneedless to observe, that counted for. To do this all the Gothic and' Cel. there was only occa tic nations have had these fion for Good and Bad Genii. The romances of Genii, as we have seen Chivalry are full of allu above. With regard to sions to this imaginary the Bad, they were parsystem. The fame opi- ticularly dreaded at the nions prevailed along the hour of noon; and in Persians. In many places some places they still make of High Germany, the it a point of duty to keep people have still a notion, company at that hour that these Genii come by with women in childbed, night, and lay themselves for fear the Demon of on those they find sleep- Noon should attack them, ing on their backs; and if left alone. This fea thus produce, that kind of perftition hath prevailed suffocation which we call no less in France, than the Night Mare. (See elsewhere ; though it Keyfler. Antiq. Sept. p. came from the eait. Se. 500.) In the same man Basil recommends us to per they accounted for

pray to God some time those luxurious and im before noon, to avert this modeft illusions, fo com

danger. The Celtes with mon in dreams; hence hence the same view, offered sa


[ocr errors]

crifices. One says plea- in his Exerc. ad German. fantly, the true Demon , Gentil. fac. Exercit. V. of noon is hunger, when

p. 221. one has nothing to satisfy it t. If one looks back (B) " Live happy upon so many chimerical

chimerical throughout all ages."} terrors, and so many pain We Ihall see this subject fu' and absurd observan treated in a more extences, from which we are five manner in another at this day delivered; who place of the EDDA, for but muft applaud the pro

which (to avoid repetigress of literature and the tions) I fall reserve masciences ? See, upon this ny remarks I have to subject, a dissertation of make on this important the learned Mr. Schutze, pallage.

[ocr errors]

ť Vid. Keyfler. Antiq. Sept. p. 500. The fame author gives a very curious passage from an ancienç SCALD, concerning the ELFs. See P. 501, 502.




[ocr errors][merged small][merged small]


ANGLER goes on,

and asks, Who are the Gods, whom men ought to acknowledge ? Har answers, There are twelve Gods, whom you ought to serve. Jafnhar adds, Nor are the Goddesses less sacred. Thridi proceeds, The first and most ancient of the Gods is Odin. He governs all things. And although the Gods are powerful, yet they all serve him, as children do their father (a). His spouse FRIGGA foresees the destinies of men, buť she never reveals what is to come, as appears from that conversation in verse which Odin one day held with Loke. " Senseless * Loke, why wilt thou pry into the fates ?

Frigga alone knoweth what is to come, “ but the never discloseth it to any person. Odin is called the Universal Father, because he is the Father of all the Gods. He is also called the Father of Battles, because


[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

he adopts for his children all those who are slain with their swords in their hands. He assigns them for their place of residence, the palaces of Valhall and Vingolf, and be stows upon them the title of Heroes (B). He has a great many other names, as Hanga-Gud, &c. [Here forty-fix names are enumerated.]

A great many names indeed! says Gangler: surely that man must be very learned who knows them all distinctly, and can tell upon

what occasions they were given. Har replies, It requires, no doubt, a tolerable memory, to recollect readily all these names. But I will intimate to you however, in a few words, what principally contributed to confer them upon him: it was the great variety of languages (B): for each people being desirous to adore him, and address their vows to him, they have been obliged to translate his name each into his own language. Some of his other names have been owing to adventures, which have happened to him in his travels, and which are related in the ancient histories. Nor can you ever pass for a man of learning, if you are not able to give an account of all these wonderful adventures.

[ocr errors][merged small]


(A) " As children do this Ejus, whose name « their father.”] I am occurs in the monuments obliged to return again to of the cathedral of Paris, Odin. There is nothing is, at one and the same in all Pagan antiquity time, the Supreme God, more express than this and, to speak with the passage, with regard to Edda, the Father of the supremacy of One Battles; as P. Pezron had God. The name of As, advanced. (See La Myor LORD, is again ascrib-' thol. & les Fables exs ed to him in this place. pliq. T. II. p. 650, &c. The Gauls, in like man Ed. Quarto.) Monf. Pelner, called him also Æs, loutier, in my opinion, or with a Latin termina hath proved, beyond all tion Efus : for several ma doubt, that the Supreme nuscript copies of Lucan, God of the Celtes, Ejus, who speak of this God, Teut or Odin, was the give the word Ejus, with• God of War. (See Hist. out the aspirate f. I have des Celtes, T. II. c. 7.) said elsewhere, that Sue It is to no purpose to obtonius positively asserts the ject, that the Father of same thing of the Etruf Gods and Men could not cans. The Roman au at the same time be called thors have often called the Father of Combats, him the Mars of the Cel without manifest contratic people; because, as diction ; for the EDDA the Edda clearly shows

establishes this to be the here, he was the same fact too strongly to be, with the God of War. disputed. Besides, conWherefore, (although the tradictions do not always learned Abbé Banier has hinder an opinion from maintained the contrary) being received. Various

+ Vid. Keyn. Antiq. p. 139, &c. 187.-The passage referred to in Lycan, is this.

Et quibus immitis plecatur sanguine caso
Tenimes; borrersque feris altaribus HISUS,

Pharfal, L, I, T.

« PreviousContinue »