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other homes. In time others come and occupy their vacated seats, and are at last obliged to withdraw in their turn. Such knots of insecure settlers on the ruined site of Bozrah, do not certainly redeem its desolate character, but serve all the more to render it "a desolation, a reproach, and a waste."
16. "Thou that dwellest in the clefts of the rock.”—The chief seat of the Edomites is doubtless here referred to, and in that they are described as dwelling in the clefts of the rock. How remarkably this applies to Petra will be seen from the various engravings which, in the course of this work, we have given from the magnificent volume of Laborde, as well as from the note to 2 Kings xiv. 7. The object of that note was however rather to identify the site than to furnish the descriptive information which it seemed best to reserve to illustrate the present text, in which the chief place of Edom is so remarkably indicated and characterised. The authorities are Burckhardt, Macmichael, Irby and Mangles, and Laborde-chiefly the two latter, who furnish the most instructive and copious details, to which we may refer those who desire further information, as our own notice must necessarily be brief.
Irby and Mangles, and the English editor of Laborde, have between them collected the notices of Petra contained in ancient writers, and which remarkably correspond not only with the situation and appearance of Petra, but with the few intimations on the subject which the Scriptures contain, and which describe it as a rock, and that rock as containing habitations, and "sepulchres on high."
Pliny (Hist. Nat. vi. 28) says that the Nabatai inhabited a city called Petra, which was situated in a valley somewhat less than two miles in extent, surrounded by inaccessible mountains, and intersected by a river. Strabo also says that the capital of the Nabatæi, which is called Petra, lay in a spot in itself plain and level, but was enclosed on all sides by a barrier of rocks and precipices. Within, it was furnished with springs of excellent quality, for the supply of water and the irrigation of gardens; but without the confining hilis, the precincts were in a great measure desert, particularly in the direction towards Judea. It was three or four days' journey from Jericho. Strabo considered the Nabatai the same people with the Idumeans. Captain Mangles, in his remarks on these accounts, furnishes a good general idea of the site. "It will be seen that these two geographers, in characterising the position of the city, not only agree with one another, but will be found sufficiently conformable to the reality, though, strictly speaking, the situation can neither be called a valley, with Pliny, nor a plain, with Strabo; yet it is certainly both low in position and level in surface, when compared with the crags and precipices that surround it. It is an area in the bosom of a mountain, swelling into mounds and intersected with gullies; but the whole ground is of such a nature as may be conveniently built upon, and has neither ascent nor descent inconveniently steep." It is not difficult to comprehend how such a situation should, in that region, have been considered highly advantageous for the foundation of a city. Laborde says: "In the remote ages, when men were engaged in perpetual wars, and plunder was the order of the day, it was no small advantage to a community to find a position which presented a considerable surface, enriched by abundant streams, and hemmed in by a girdle of rocks, to which there was no ingress except from a ravine so narrow that a few men stationed on the top of the mountain might prevent an enemy, however numerous, from effecting an entrance into the town. When the Nabatheans grew to be a powerful people, the importance of this position became more obvious, as they had to guard themselves not only against the jealousy of the neighbouring tribes, but also against the desire of conquest which animated more distant nations." It is doubtless to the advantages of its position that we must attribute the very singular character which this city offers. To realise these advantages, it was necessary that the inhabitants should confine their town within this hollow; but as its base was of very limited extent for a metropolitan city, they were almost driven to the resource which they adopted, of excavating the sides of the enclosing rocks, and forming there temples, tombs, and habitations; and as ages passea and population increased, these became so multiplied as to give to the site that peculiar character which it now exhibits, and which for countless ages yet to come it is likely to maintain. Probably there were many natural caves which were first occupied, and which suggested the idea of forming others by art, when no more of them remained unappropriated. There is no reason to suppose that these excavations received at once the highly enriched character which a great number of them now bear. The inhabitants, in the first instance, probably formed simple excavations, to which the more refined and luxurious people of a later age added the ornamental and magnificent façades, sculptured out of the surface of the rock, of which many examples have been given in our different engravings, and which impress so distinct a character upon the desolated city of Edom. No doubt, however, many of the caverns were formed in these comparatively late times, and in which the ornamental frontispieces formed part of the original design. Thus it is that while constructed towns of much later date, are now reduced to heaps and scattered fragments, or are even covered by mould over which the plough passes and the harvest grows-the tombs, temples, and dwellings of Petra, carved in the living rock, remain for the most part entire and beautiful, unbroken and even unstained by the ages which have passed since the town was the seat of that luxury and wealth which the commerce of many nations brought into its hollow valley.
A detailed description of any of these excavations and the noble fronts which many of them offer, could not be suitably introduced in this place; and the impression on the subject which it might be desirable the reader should realize, will be better given by the engravings we have formerly introduced, and by those which we now add, than by any quantity of written description. That which we now add, as well as what we have already stated, has rather in view the general aspect of the scene than the particular objects which it includes. Our first cut shows a pass, beyond which appears the theatre, the whole of which, with the ascending rows of seats, is cut in the solid rock. Speaking of this, Mangles says, "This pass conducts to the theatre, and here the ruins of the city burst on the view in full grandeur, shut in on the opposite side by craggy precipices, from which numerous ravines and valleys branch out in all directions; the sides of the valleys covered with an endless variety of excavated tombs and private dwellings (Isa. xlix. 16) presented the most singular scene we ever beheld; and we must despair to give the reader an idea of the singular effect of rocks, tinted with the most extraordinary hues, whose summits present us with nature in her most savage and romantic aspects, while their bases were worked out with all the symmetry and regularity of art, with colonnades and pediments, and ranges of corridors adhering to their perpendicular surface." To this the reflections of Laborde, marking, as they do, the fulfilment of the doom denounced by the prophets, form a marked sequel:-"What a people must they have not been who first opened the mountain to stamp upon it the seal of their energy and genius! What a climate, too, which gilds with its light the graceful forms of a great variety of sculptures, without suffering its winters to crumble their sharp edges, or to reduce in the least their high reliefs! Silence reigns all around, save where the solitary owl now and then utters his plaintive cry. The Arab passes through the scene with perfect indifference, scarcely deigning to look at works executed with so much ability, or to meditate except with contempt on an object
* He uses the general term, "paulo minus II MP. amplitudinis;” but he must mean the circumference, and so Mangles and Laborde's editor understand.
VOL. III. N
which he in vain seeks to comprehend." The writer of this passage has, without intending it, made every word it contains replete with meaning for the illustration of prophecy.
As sepulchres are more frequently than dwellings excavated in the sides of mountains, we suspect that too large a proportion of those in Petra have been regarded as tombs. That a great number of them were destined for sepulchres is perfectly clear: but that many were used for habitations is allowed by Mangles and Laborde. The former, after quoting the Nubian geographer, who states that the houses of Petra were cut in the rock, says: "That this was not universally true is evident from the great quantity of stones employed in the lesser kinds of edifices which are scattered over the whole site; but it is also true that there are grottoes in great numbers which are certainly not sepulchres" Of these he particularly mentions one which presents a front of four windows with a large and lofty doorway in the centre, but the front of which is without ornamental sculptures. The door and three of the windows open into a large apartment, sixty feet in length and of proportionate breadth; while the fourth window belongs to a smaller apartment, apparently for sleeping, which is not brought down to the level of the floor of the great chamber, but has below it another small apartment which receives light only from the door. Of the constructed edifices in the open area itself, very little of a definite shape now remains, and the ruin into which these houses have fallen furnishes a marked and instructive contrast to the comparatively perfect condition of the surrounding works in the rock. There is however one interesting mass, which, though greatly ruined, towers above the general wreck, and affords us information as to the form and style of the constructed edifices, and we have therefore made it the subject of our second engraving. In the foreground are the remains of an archway of very florid architecture, with pilasters having panels, enriched with foliage, &c. in the manner of Palmyra. The arch was the introduction to the great pile of building standing nearly at right angles to it. This building has a door on one side, on the three others it was decorated with a frieze of triglyphs and large flowers in the metopes. Beams of wood are let in at intervals between the courses of the masonry, and continue to this day-a strong proof of the dryness of the climate. The front had a portico of four columns. This part is much ruined. The interior of the edifice was divided into three parallel chambers, and there seem to have been several stories. Laborde calls it a temple; but Mangles, whose description we have followed, thinks from the interior construction that it was rather a palace or some private edifice. The Græco-Roman character exhibited in this and in broken portions of other ruins, indicating a later date than the time of the prophets, is a corroboration of prophecy; for it was foretold that God would destroy and make desolate not only that which Edom had already built, but that which it should build in future times:-"Though thou make thy nest as high as the eagle, I will bring thee down.""They shall build, but I will throw down."
1, 9, 21, 35 The judgment of Babylon. 4, 17, 33 The redemption of Israel.
THE word that the LORD spake against Babylon and against the land of the Chaldeans 'by Jeremiah the prophet.
2 Declare ye among the nations, and publish, and set up a standard; publish, and conceal not: say, Babylon is taken, Bel is confounded, Merodach is broken in pieces; her idols are confounded, her images are broken in pieces.
3 For out of the north there cometh up a nation against her, which shall make her land desolate, and none shall dwell therein : they shall remove, they shall depart, both man and beast.
4 In those days, and in that time, saith the LORD, the children of Israel shall come, they and the children of Judah together, going and weeping: they shall go, and seek the LORD their God.
7 All that found them have devoured them and their adversaries said, We offend not, because they have sinned against the LORD, the habitation of justice, even the LORD, the hope of their fathers.
8 Remove out of the midst of Babylon, and go forth out of the land of the Chaldeans, and be as the he goats before the flocks.
Heb. lift up.
9¶ For, lo, I will raise and cause to coine up against Babylon an assembly of great nations from the north country: and they shall set themselves in array against her; from thence she shall be taken: their arrows shall be as of a mighty 'expert man;
none shall return in vain.
10 And Chaldea shall be a spoil: all that spoil her shall be satisfied, saith the LORD.
11 Because ye were glad, because ye re- | joiced, O ye destroyers of mine heritage, because ye are grown 'fat as the heifer at grass, and bellow as bulls;
12 Your mother shall be sore confounded: she that bare you shall be ashamed: behold, the hindermost of the nations shall be a wilderness, a dry land, and a desert.
13 Because of the wrath of the LORD it shall not be inhabited, but it shall be wholly desolate 'every one that goeth by Babylon shall be astonished, and hiss at all her
5 They shall ask the way to Zion with their faces thitherward, saying, Come, and let us join ourselves to the LORD in a perpetual covenant that shall not be forgotten.
6 My people hath been lost sheep: their shepherds have caused them to go astray, they have turned them away on the mountains: they have gone from mountain to hill, they have forgotten their 'restingplace. | plagues.
1 Heb. by the hand of Jeremiah.
3 Heb. place to lie down in. 6 Heb. big, or, corpulent.
Isa. 48. 20. Chap. 51. 6. Rev. 18. 4. 'Or, destroyer. 7 Chap. 49. 17.
14 Put yourselves in array against Babylon round about: all ye that bend the bow, shoot at her, spare no arrows: for she hath sinned against the LORD.
15 Shout against her round about: she hath given her hand: her foundations are fallen, her walls are thrown down: for it is the vengeance of the LORD: take vengeance upon her; as she hath done, do unto her.
16 Cut off the sower from Babylon, and him that handleth the sickle in the time of harvest for fear of the oppressing sword they shall turn every one to his people, and they shall flee every one to his own
17¶ Israel is a scattered sheep; the lions have driven him away: first the king of Assyria hath devoured him; and last this Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon hath broken his bones.
18 Therefore thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel; Behold, I will punish the king of Babylon and his land, as I have punished the king of Assyria.
19 And I will bring Israel again to his habitation, and he shall feed on Carmel and Bashan, and his soul shall be satisfied upon mount Ephraim and Gilead.
20 In those days, and in that time, saith the LORD, the iniquity of Israel shall be sought for, and there shall be none; and the sins of Judah, and they shall not be found: for I will pardon them whom I reserve.
21 ¶ Go up against the land of Merathaim, even against it, and against the inhabitants of Pekod: waste and utterly destroy after them, saith the LORD, and do according to all that I have commanded thee.
22 A sound of battle is in the land, and of great destruction.
23 How is the hammer of the whole earth cut asunder and broken! how is Babylon become a desolation among the nations!
24 I have laid a snare for thee, and thou art also taken, O Babylon, and thou wast not aware thou art found, and also caught, because thou hast striven against the LORD.
25 The LORD hath opened his armoury, and hath brought forth the weapons of his indignation for this is the work of the Lord GOD of hosts in the land of the Chal
26 Come against her "from the utmost border, open her storehouses: "cast her up
32 And the most proud shall stumble and fall, and none shall raise him up: and I will kindle a fire in his cities, and it shall devour all round about him.
33 Thus saith the LORD of hosts; The children of Israel and the children of Judah were oppressed together: and all that took them captives held them fast: they refused to let them go.
34 Their Redeemer is strong; the LORD of hosts is his name; he shall throughly plead their cause, that he may give rest to the land, and disquiet the inhabitants of Babylon.
35 A sword is upon the Chaldeans, saith the LORD, and upon the inhabitants of Babylon, and upon her princes, and upon her wise men.
36 A sword is upon the 15 liars; and they shall dote: a sword is upon her mighty men; and they shall be dismayed.
37 A sword is upon their horses, and upon their chariots, and upon all the mingled people that are in the midst of her; and they shall become as women: a sword is upon her treasures; and they shall be robbed.
38 A drought is upon her waters; and they shall be dried up: for it is the land of graven images, and they are mad upon their idols.
9 Or, of the rebels. 10 Or, visitation. 11 Heb. from the end. 15 Or, chief stays. 16 Heb, bars.
12 Or, tread her.
39 Therefore the wild beasts of the desert with the wild beasts of the islands shall dwell there, and the owls shall dwell therein: and it shall be no more inhabited for ever; neither shall it be dwelt in from generation to generation.
40 "As God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah and the neighbour cities thereof, saith the LORD; so shall no man abide there, neither shall any son of man dwell therein.
41 Behold, a people shall come from the north, and a great nation, and many kings shall be raised up from the coasts of the earth.
report of them, and his hands waxed feeble: anguish took hold of him, and pangs as of a woman in travail.
44 Behold, he shall come up like a lion from the swelling of Jordan unto the habitation of the strong but I will make them suddenly run away from her: and who is a chosen man, that I may appoint over her? for who is like me? and "who will "appoint me the time? and who is that shepherd that will stand before me?
45 Therefore hear ye the counsel of the LORD, that he hath taken against Babylon; and his purposes, that he hath purposed against the land of the Chaldeans: Surely the least of the flock shall draw them out: surely he shall make their habitation desolate with them.
46 At the noise of the taking of Babylon the earth is moved, and the cry is heard among the nations.
19 Job 41 10. Chap. 49. 19. 20 Or, content me to plead
BABYLON.-BIRS NEMROUD, WITH THE EUPHRATES IN THE DISTANCE, OVERFLOWING ITS BANKS.
CHAPS, L. and LI.-These two chapters contain most important and instructive predictions concerning Babylon, every one of which has been fulfilled, as historians and travellers have concurred to demonstrate. The prophecies relate by anticipation the circumstances which should attend, and which did attend, the conquest of Babylon by the Medes and Persians; and they also describe that condition of the city and country, which should be the immediate or final effect of that great overthrow, and which has been and is its condition. We had some intention of taking up the sub
ther fully, in a general notice, under these two chapters; but, considering how much we have already said cong Babylon, in separately illustrating different passages of historical and prophetical Scripture, it seems best to ne the same plan by separately noticing the more prominent circumstances which these chapters offer, omitting I notice of those to which our attention has on former occasions been directed, and reserving some points for illustration. The reader is aware that the more conspicuous remains of this renowned city consist of two vast of ruin, the Birs Nemroud and the Mujelibe, which have been fully described in a note on Gen. xi. Of the former esentation has there been given; and the engraving at Isa. xiii. exhibits the latter, as it appeared in the time of della Valle. We have now great satisfaction in being enabled, through the kindness of Mr. James Baillie to furnish additional representations of the same objects, from drawings made by him on a recent visit to the ted site. They will show the present state and appearance of these remarkable masses, with other circumstances sterizing the Babylonian desolations; and may thus be considered to furnish a very interesting practical comry on the present chapters.
se 16. "Cut off the sower from Babylon.”—If we understand this of Babylonia or Chaldea, in the large sense, it ng been accomplished. Herodotus declares that, of all the countries he had seen, none was so suitable as Babyfor the culture of corn; and says that the returns were generally two hundred, and sometimes three hundred But all is now an utter desert, offering only some patches of cultivation near the few settlements which it as. But perhaps the prophecy has a more definite application to the city of Babylon itself; for it appears from acient historians that it was very loosely built, with large open places and detached buildings; and that much of pare ground was cultivated and ploughed for corn; so that, in case of a siege, the inhabitants were enabled to it themselves by their internal resources: and the common plan among ancient besiegers, of starving a populous to a surrender, was impracticable with respect to Babylon. We have already shown that now "the sower is cut m Babylon," and that no cultivation does or can take place upon its site.
"The archers."-The conquerors of Babylon are repeatedly described as "archers." The Persians, who are led, were in ancient times famous for their general and very skilful use of the bow, which was in fact the characg arm of that people. Even at present the bow still continues to be a favourite weapon, although in effective use been nearly superseded by the gun.
“A drought is upon her waters; and they shall be dried up."-This may possibly refer to a circumstance attending pture of the city by the Persians, which we shall have occasion to notice; but it more probably alludes to the cal condition of the country. The plain in which Babylon stands is exposed to long drought and intense heat amer, so that the dry soil must have been at all times perfectly barren without artificial irrigation; but with such tion the ground is, even at this day, of unexampled fertility, except upon the wide-spread grit and debris of desoeities. Therefore it was that the land exhibited one of the most extensive and complicated systems of irrigation he world ever saw. It was overrun with innumerable canals, in all directions-the largest of them navigable, eeding others, diminishing in importance with their distance from the trunk. These, as well as the parent were bordered with an infinity of hydraulic machines, by which the water was raised and distributed into the and gardens. The same plan is still pursued, to a limited extent, at some spots in the immediate vicinity of vers. But it is now literally true of Babylon, that "a drought is upon her waters; and they are dried up." Yet he lines and ridges of innumerable canals remain, which enable the spectator to trace the general system, and to the ancient historians as well as the prophecies of Scripture; the whole being strongly calculated to show the to which human skill and industry were once employed in giving to this now desolate region that fertility for it was in old times celebrated. This explanation seems to us to give much force to the present prediction, there can be no country the subsistence of which more entirely depended upon a complicated system of irrigation. ever water is applied in this region (with the exception already made), the productive powers of the soil and e cannot be exceeded; but where that is wanting, it becomes a naked desert.
severe judgment of God against Babylon in enge of Israel. 59 Jeremiah delivereth the k of this prophecy to Seraiah, to be cast into phrates, in token of the perpetual sinking of bylon.
3 saith the LORD; Behold, I will raise
Thus the slain shall fall in the land of
1 Heb. heart.
the Chaldeans, and they that are thrust through in her streets.
5 For Israel hath not been forsaken, nor Judah of his God, of the LORD of hosts; though their land was filled with sin against the Holy One of Israel.
6 Flee out of the midst of Babylon, and deliver every man his soul: be not cut off in her iniquity; for this is the time of the LORD'S vengeance; he will render unto her a recompence.
7 Babylon hath been a golden cup in the LORD's hand, that made all the earth drunken the nations have drunken of her wine; therefore the nations are mad.
8 Babylon is suddenly fallen and destroyed: howl for her; take balm for her pain, if so be she may be healed.
9 We would have healed Babylon, but she is not healed: forsake her, and let us
Isa. 21. 9. Revel, 14, 8, and 18. 2.
* Chap. 50. 8. Revel. 18. 4.