« PreviousContinue »
Bible and those found in the classical writers of antiquity. Whether this agreement and parallelism is owing to traditional knowledge derived from the Bible, or is entirely independent of the scriptures, being the result of reflection, the truth in the case is not altered. Some of the agreement is doubtless to be traced to the fact that many of the classical writers lived at the same age as the writers of the Bible, and that at a given period similar customs, views, and modes of thought prevail.
The present work is designed to illustrate the Bible by parallel thoughts or expressions taken from the best classical writers. The author begins with the books in their order in the English Bible, and where a particular verse, or several verses, are illustrated by any parallel expression in the classics, he places it under the verse or verses to be illustrated. In this way the work becoms a kind of commentary on the scriptures by the classical writers. Much that is found in these writers not only confirms the truth of sacred history, but throws light upon many things which would otherwise, from our ignorance of the marners and customs of the times, be involved in obscurity. Classical literature, too, explains many allusions in the Bible, and enables us to enter more fully into the feelings, thoughts, and motives by which the men of the scripture period were influenced.
The size of the volume might have been considerably reduced by applying a more severe test to the illustrative passages. Many of these have no special pertinence, and should have been rejected. The work would have been more valuable, too, if the author had made himself familiar with the investigations of more recent writers, especially those of Germany. But the work as it is, is one of interest, and will afford important aid to the student of the Bible.
GENTILE AND JEW IN THE COURTS OF THE TEMPLE OF CHRIST.!
The history of Christianity cannot be fully understood without a knowledge of the influences with which it has come in contact. " The religious systems, modes of thought and speculation, philosophy, life, and manners," of the different people to which it was communicated, would promote or binder its diffusion. The Greek, Roman, Persian, Egyptian, and the Jew, from the diversity of their social and moral state, systems of philosophy, forms of government, and literature, looked upon the Christian religion when it was made known to them, from very different points of view; and they received it with more or less favor, or entirely rejected it, according to the influences under which they had been formed. To understand the history of Christianity, therefore, we must inquire into what soil its seeds were cast —" to what doctrines and systems of thought could it attach itself?
1 The Gentile and the Jew in the Courts of the Temple of Christ. An Intro duction to the History of Christianity. From the German of John J. Dollinger, Professor of Ecclesiastical History to the University of Munich. By N. Darnell, M.A., late Fellow of New College, Oxford. 2 vols. 8vo. pp. 489 and 437. London: Longman and Co. 1862. Vol. XXI. No. 84.
what circumstances paved the way for it, and forwarded and facilitated its expansion ? what obstacles, prejudices, and errors had it to overcome ? what adversaries to encounter ? what evils to remedy ? how did Paganism react on Christianity ?”! The solution of questions like these is the object of these volumes. The investigation is broad and deep, giving a view of Paganism previous to the time of the promulgation of Christianity, and also the attitude of the Jewish mind.
This work is, therefore, a broad survey of the Hellenic religious sys tems, those of Asia Minor, Middle Asia, and Africa; the religions of the West, - Etruria, Rome, Gaul, and Germany; the philosophy and literature of the Greeks and Romans, so far as they influenced the religious conduct of the people, and also of their social and moral state. It embraces like wise the historical development of Judaism, the moral and social condition of the Jews, their religious life, and their doctrines.
The work in all its parts indicates high scholarly attainments, and gives a more complete view of Paganism before the time of the Christian era than has yet been attempted, and is a valuable introduction to the history of Christianity.
MAN AND NATURE. This volume, which has been for some time before the public, and has been received, so far as we know, with unqualified favor, is marked, first, by honest and extensive research. Mr. Marsh has given the titles of more than three hundred volumes consulted in the preparation of it. Not a quarter of these are in the English language. The bulk of the works are French, German, Italian, Danish, and Swedish. These have evidently been carefully and thoroughly studied, their facts and opinions weighed, and their conclusions carefully stated. The book is marked, secondly, by a wide and critical observation. In all his extensive travels the distinguished author has been watchful of the phases of nature, not only in her annual and regular changes, but in those slower and more permanent transitions to which man has directly contributed, by which the facility and prosperity of states and nations bave been advanced or essentially retarded. Every region of nature, the minute and the vast, seemes to be brought under contribution. The trout brooks of New Hampshire, and the maple orchards of Vermont, the wild honey-bee of New England, and the universal grasshopper, tell their story, as well as the sands of the Arabian desert, the dikes of Holland, and the lofty peaks of the Alps. The book is crowded with facts and suggestions. As an illustration of the influence of a nicely critical and classical spirit acting upon a habit of observation, we may mention that Mr. Marsh incidentally suggests bis belief that the exquisite phrase of the Greek poet, the now familiar ποντίων κυμάτων αναρίθμον γέλασμα refers to
* Man and Nature; or, Physical Geography as modified by Human Action By George P. Marsh. New York: Charles Scribner.
the audible, not the visible, laugh of the wave, the musical murmur, and not the sparkle of the sea.
Another characteristic of the book, is its independence and thorough honesty. The facts are not bent to a theory, but the conclusions are based upon the facts which support and illustrate them. The author does not write as a professed physicist, nor for scientific readers merely, but addresses himself “ to the general intelligence of educated, observing, and scientific men." His object is, by practical suggestions, to help us to correct certain common errors and to save ourselves from some of the evils which carelessness and improvidence have brought upon other nations. The indiscriminate destruction of our forests, for example, although we are so young a people, has already begun to tell upon the fountains and streams in some parts of the country, as well as rapidly to exhaust the supply of wood and timber, which with a little protection would have been an unfailing source of wealth.
The work is divided into six chapters. In the first the author lays out bis subject in general. He shows the deterioration of certain parts of the globe through the influence of man. He presents man as a destroyer - a wanton and reckless destroyer, and inquires into the causes of physical decay, and whether it may not be arrested. The second chapter treats of the influence of man upon animal and vegetable life. The third, fourth, and fifth, of the action of man as affecting the woods, the waters, and the lands. The concluding chapter is on the probable or possible geograpbical changes to be effected by man.
The whole volume abounds in suggestions — we may call them theological as well as economical — which are of great consequence, and we heartily wish the volume could be read and pondered by every thoughtful man in the country.
LIFE AND LETTERS OF DAVID Cort SCUDDER. The subject of this memoir was endued with strong powers of mind, which gave promise of full and large development. The germs of a philogopher were in him, and the cause of science had much to hope from him. He bad an honesty of heart which won the confidence of all who knew him. His piety was sound and healthful. His natural energy and firmness of will formed the basis for a vigorous and robust Christian character. He was an enterprising missionary, and bade fair to accomplish a far greater work on heathen soil than is ordinarily assigned to a single individual. He united the most amiable modesty with the most unselfish daring. His brief missionary career was distinguished by the multiplicity of his projects for advancing the cause of science and religion ; by the force, steadfastness, and perseverance of his will in executing all that he had undertaken ; by his
1 Life and Letters of David Coit Scudder, Missionary in Southern India. By Horace E. Scudder. 12mo. pp. 402. New York: Hurd and Houghton ; Bogton: E. P. Dutton and Co.
zeal tempered with humility, and the diffidence that lay hidden under his high aims. His death seemed like a tragedy. It illustrated the truth, that infinite riches belong to God, and therefore he can dispense with any earthly ornaments of his earthly temple. The record of our young missionary's last labors and death, as it is given in the present volume (pp. 367 – 385), swells the heart with grief. The entire memoir is written in a style unusually natural and honest. It is truly a wholesome book. It forms a fitting monument alike of departed worth and of brotherly faithfulness. The Biography will be hailed with gratitude by those who have perused the essays of the young missionary in the Bibliotheca Sacra, Vol. XVII. pp. 709 – 755, and Vol. XVIII. pp. 535 – 595, and 673 - 724. He had forineu plans for com
ommunicating various elaborate essays to this periodical. That so many of his projects for earthly labor bave been baffled by bis sudden death is a deep mystery.
New MISSIONARY ATLAS. Rev. R. Grundemann, Ph. D., has commenced the preparation of a Missionary Atlas, giving, in accurate special maps, the position of all missionary stations, and adding historical statements which will explain the present relations and prospects of the missions. Dr. Grundemann has a high reputation among the evangelical divines of Germany; and his competency for the important work which he has undertaken is fully attested by Dr. Hoffmann, Dr. Tholuck, and men of like reputation. He is to be addressed at Frank furt on the Oder, Prussia.
He has prepared the following questions, to wbich be desires an answer from all the foreign missionary stations under English and American patronage. We trust that the friends of missions who read the Bibliotheca Sacra, will exert themselves to secure for Dr. Grundemann full reports of our own missionary stations.
A. Geographical Questions. - 1. What is the name of the station, and of the country, province, and district in which it is situated ? 2. Name of the capital of that country, province, and district, and its distance and direction from the station, as well as from some fixed and known points on the coast. 3. What other towns of religious, political, or commercial importance in the vicinity of the station ? — Name; distance from station; direction ; remarks. 4. What mountains near the station ? Direction of the range ? Names of their chief summits? Distance of each from the station ? 5. What rivers near the station ? Where do they rise ? In what direction do they flow? Where do they empty ? 6. What chief roads near the station ? Where leading to ?
B. Ethnographical Questions. — 7. Name of the native tribe at the station in singular and plural) ? 8. To wbat other tribes is it related ? 9. Population of the tribe, and boundary of its territory? 10. Form of government, and name of the present ruler, or rulers ? 11. Wbat was the original religion of the tribe ? 12. Remarks on the past history of the tribe, and its present poli.ival and social condition.
C. Philological Questions. - 13. What is the native language of the tribe ? 14. Is it already a written language, and, if so, what alphabet is employed ? 15. If the alphabet is not yet known through the medium of a good grammar, please write it out, and give the force of each letter by a corresponding letter of the “ Standard Alphabet.”! If the alphabet has never hitherto been reduced to writing at all, please represent the sounds in use, as far as possible, by means of the letters of the “ Standard Alphabet.” 16. If the literature of the language is modern and limited, an account of the various works, including titles, authors, and dates of publication, would be very acceptable. If, however, it is ancient and extensive, it will be sufficient to denote to what extent it is used at the station. 17. What grammar or grammars and lexicon exist of the language ? If you know of any philologian who has made the language a special study, please give bis address. 18. Should no grammar or dictionary of the language exist, please give the numerals, the possessive pronouns, and the words for father, mother, and such like.
D. Missionary Questions. — 19. When, and by whom was the station founded ? 20. Number, names, and functions of the laborers employed, both foreign and native ? 21. How many people belong to the congregation- a. Adults: baptized — males, females; Communicants— males, females; b. Children? 22. What place or places of worship at the station? Do the missionaries preach in the native language, or employ an interpreter? 23. What schools for moral, intellectual, or industrial improvement at the station, and what is tbe language employed ? 24. Number of scholars : Males, females; Names of the schools (a) (6) (c)? 25. Sums raised by the congregation for church and missionary purposes during the last year. 26. What outstations have been established:- Name; distance ; direction ; number of laborers; number of converts — baptized, communicants; schools and number of scholars; remarks on the situation of the place ? 27. Are there any regular preaching places near the station ? 28. What missionary efforts are made by other societies in the vicinity of the station ? Any information relating to such stations will be acceptable.
Dwight's MODERN PHILOLOGY.1 We noticed favorably the First Series of Dr. Dwight's Modern Philology in Vol. XVI. p. 887. The present volume treats of comparative phonology, and of comparative English etymology, or English etymology in its comparative elements and aspects, especially on its classical side.
The principles of phonology here presented have special reference to the Sanscrit, Greek, and Latin. This part of the work gives the more important results of the investigations into the changes in words of the same radical forms in these languages. The subject one of great difficulty,
1 Standard Alphabet for reducing unwritten Languages and Foreign Graphic Systems to a uniform Orthography in European Letters. By Prof. C. R. Lepsius.
Modern Philology : its Discoveries, History, and Influences. By Benjamin W. Dwight. 21 Series. 8vo. pp. 554. New York: Charles Scribner. 1864.