« PreviousContinue »
places where it is plentiful,) butter, gardenftuff, fruit, fowls, and fewel. As for butcher's meat, they must fetch it from some neighbouring village, or the encampments of those that feed the flocks and herds of the adjoining country':
Such well-furnished resting-places appear to have been known in Judæa, in the time of our Lord, since he supposes the good Samaritan committed the poor wounded man to the care of the host, or keeper of the caravanserai, and promised at his return to pay him for whatever things his state required, and that the keeper should furnish him with, Luke x. 34, 35. This could not be a place like some of the Eastern caravanserais, in which nothing is to be found but bare walls.
There is a great deal of difference in these countries, between the several nations that inhabit them, with respect to the readiness of communicating of their provisions to their fellow-travellers: the Arabs are very communicative; the Turks of a more sour and close disposition.
I have somewhere met with a place, in our books of travels, where the writer was struck with the liberality of a poor muleteer or cameldriver, who with all chearfulness made an offer of some of his bread and dates to those with whom he travelled, though the quantity that he had with him was very moderate ; while some rich Turks were very careful to take their repast in concealment and silence.
"Voy. de Chardin, tome 1, p. 148. '
* Or' rather Turkish kanes, of many of which M. Maundrell gives this description, p. 2.
I cannot now point out the place, but I well remember, that as this was the substance of the account, so the writer was greatly struck with the friendliness and liberality of the poor fellow ; while he could not forbear expressing his feelings of dislike, of the contracted and unfociable behaviour, and penuriousness of the others.
This is precisely, I should imagine, what the author of Ecclesiasticus had in view, when, after having spoken of thievishness in travellers as a just ground of shame, he goes on to add, “ and to lean with thine elbow upon the “ meat,” or “ on the loaves of bread,” Ecclus. xli. 19. For he had been speaking immediately before of travellers; what follows then may be naturally supposed to be nearly related to them, as certainly the first clause of the next verse has a very intimate connexion with people in that situation : Be ashamed-“ of . līlence before them that falute thee.”
The attitude in which the son of Sirach represents the man he is pointing out, is exactly descriptive of a traveller dismounted from his camel, his horse, or his ass, and
fitting upon the ground, leaning with his elbow on his faddle, and fo covering with his large fleeve the provisions he had in his lap, and eating his morsel alone, without the least notice of those about him.
The leaning with the elbow on the saddle is precisely the posture in which the Baron de Tott represents Ali Aga, his conductor, as sitting when dismounted, not eating indeed, but waiting for his supper'; but might as well be represented as the posture of one taking his repast, especially if of an unfociable turn.
We have an instance of this exchange of food in travelling, in the account Irwin has given of his pafling through the deserts of Upper Ægypt'. There, he tells us, The captain of the robbers (he means the wild Arabs) made them a present of a bag of flour, which he understood they wanted; and, when he would not accept a pecuniary return, they fent him half the rice they had, which proved a new and acceptable food to him.
Such an intercourse appears amiable, while the contrary management is what this Jewish writer thinks may well occasion shame. At least this is, I think, the most natural interpretation of this clause. .
"Mem. tome 2, p. 19.
? P. 322.
The learned have been greatly divided in their opinions, concerning the true meaning of the particle stws, in John iv. 6, which is rendered thus in our version : “ Jesus there“ fore being wearied with his journey, fat “ thus on the well : and it was about the “ fixth hour,” which every body knows with the Jews meant noon. But an attention to the usages of the East, and of antiquity, might, I should think, ascertain it's meaning with a good deal of exactness.
Our version of the word (thus) gives no determinate idea. We know, on the contrary, what is meant by the translation of a celebrated writer, who renders the word by the English term immediately, but that trantlation, I think, by no means the happiest he has given us. It conveys the idea of extreme weariness: but nothing in the after part of the narration leads to such an interpretation ; nor can I conceive, for what imaginable purpose the circumstance of his immediate throwing himself down near the well, before the woman came up, and which, consequently, it is to be supposed The knew nothing of, is mentioned by the Evangelist. Not to fay that the passage cited in proof of this interpretation, (Acts xx. 11,) which instead of jó he departed, he thought fignified the immediateness of his departure, by no means gives satisfaction. It is not so expressed in his own translation of that passage', nor does it appear so to signify.
' If any should doubt the truth of this fact, they may be abundantly satisfied by the collections of the learned Wolfius, of Hamburg, upon this verse.
2 See Doddridge's Exp.
The simple meaning, I should apprehend, of the particle is, that Jesus, being wearied with his journey, sat down by the well, like a person fo wearied, as to design to take some repose and refreshment there: to which St. John adds, it was about the sixth hour. If this is just, the translation should have been something like this : Jesus therefore being wearied with his journey, sat down accordingly, (or like such an one,) by the well. It was about the fixth hour. · The particle certainly expresses conformity to an account to be given after; fo John xxi. 1, " Jesus shewed himself again to his disciples “ at the sea of Tiberias; and on this wife rr Thewed he himself,” referring to the account about to be given. And sometimes it fignifies conformity to an account that had been before given : so, John xi. 47, 48,
: Candor, however, here obliges me to observe, that great liveliness of thought and recollection, joined with great diligence, could not be imagined to be sufficient to preserve from such inaccuracies as these, more especially in a person honoured indeed, but opprelled, with a vast variety of cares.