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more edifice at Nimroud. The city had now attained the dimensions stated in the book of Jonah and by Diodorus. From Nimroud up the Tigris to the northern extremity of Kouyunjik, is about eighteen miles; from Nimroud to Karamles on the east, about twelve miles; from the latter to Kborsabad on the north-east is eighteen; and from the last point to Kouyunjik, about twelve. The circumference would make the 60 miles of the geographer and the three days' journey of the prophet. Within this space, there are now many large mounds, including the principal ruins in Assyria. The face of the country is strowed with the remains of pottery, brick, and other fragments. The space between the great public edifices was probably occupied by private houses, standing in the midst of gardens or arable lands. Besides the vast number of small mounds everywhere visible, scarcely a husbandman drives his plough over the soil, without exposing the vestiges of former habitations. Each quarter of the city may have had its distinct name. Thus the (Mespila and Larissa of Xenophon seem to have been applied respectively to the ruins at Konyunjik and Nimroud.

Existing ruins thus show, in Mr. L's opinion, that Nineveh acquired its greatest extent in the time of the kings of the second dynasty; that is to say, of the kings mentioned in Scripture. The earliest Assyrian habitations were probably but one story in height. When it became necessary to make temples and palaces more conspicuous, artificial mounds were raised, there being no natural eminences. The mound was regularly and systematically built of sun-dried bricks. On this platform, thirty or forty feet high, the royal or sacred edifice was built. The plains and the low lands between the Tigris and the hill country, abound in a kind of coarse alabaster or gypsum. Large masses everywhere protrude in low ridges from the alluvial soil, or are exposed in the gullies formed from winter torrents. It is easily worked, and its color and transparent appearance are agreeable to the eye. This alabaster, cut into large slabs, was used in the public buildings. The walls of the chambers, from five to fifteen feet thick, were first made of sun-dried bricks. The alabaster slabs were used as panels. They were placed upright against the walls, care being first taken to cut on the back of each an inscription, recording the name, title, and descent of the king undertaking the work. They were kept together, and held in their places hy iron, copper, or wooden cramps and plugs. The cramps were in the forın of double dove-tails, and fitted into corresponding grooves in two adjoining slabs. The subjects were designed and sculptured and the inscriptions carved after the slabs had been fixed. The principal entrances to the chambers were formed by gigantic winged bulls and lions with human heads. The smaller doorways were guarded by colossal figures of divinities or priests. No remains of doors, gates, or 1849.]

Biblical Illustrations.


bivges were discovered; but it is probable that the entrances were provided with them. On all the slabs forming eptrances, in the oldest palace of Nimroud, were marks of a black fluid, reseinbling blood, which appeared to have been daubed on the stone. The slabs used as panelling to the walls of upbaked brick, rarely exceeded twelve feet in height, and in the earliest palace of Nimroud were not generally more than nine, while the lions and bulls, forming the doorways, vary from ten to sixteen. Even these colossal figures did not complete the height of the room; the wall being carried some feet above them. This upper wall was built either of baked bricks, richly colored, or of sun-dried bricks covered by a thin coat of plaster, on which were painted various ornaments. In some cases, the colors had lost little of their original freshness. The roof was probably formed by beams, supported entirely by the walls; smaller beams, planks, or branches of trees, were laid across them, and the whole was plastered on the outside with mud. There is no evidence that an arch or vault was thrown from wall to wall. The narrowness of the chambers in all the edifices at Nimroud, with one exception, is remarkable. The hall may have been entirely open to the sky, but this could hardly have been the case with the other chambers. The great narrowness of all the rooms compared with the length, seems to prove that the Assyrians had no means of constructing a roof requiring other support than that furnished by the side-walls. The most elaborately ornamented hall at Nimroud, though above 160 feet in length, was only 35 feet broad. Beams supported by opposite walls may have met in the centre of the ceiling, and this may account for the great thickness of some of the partitions. Remains of beams were found in great quantities at Nimroud, but in a sound state only in one corner. The only trees now in Assyria large enough to span a room 30 or 40 feet wide, are the palm and poplar, both easily decaying.

Among the illustrations of the Bible in these volumes are the following: Embroidered clothes or trappings were frequently thrown over the backs of the chariot horses.“ Dedan was thy merchant in precious clothes for cbariots.” Ez. 27: 20. The horsemen formed a no less important part of the Assyrian army than the horse. “ Assyrians clothed in blue, captains and rulers, all of them desirable young men, horsemen riding upon borses.” Ez. 23: 6. 1 K. 10: 36. They were armed with bows or long spears : “The horseman litteth up the glittering spear.” Nahum 3: 3. The earliest Assyrian sculptures show that the horses were drawn from the finest models: “Their horses are swifter than the leopards, and more fierce than the evening wolves.” Hab. 1: 8. There was a horse especially consecrated to the sun, comp. 2 K. 23: 11. The rarest woods, in which the cedar was conspicuous, were used for the wood work of the cham

bers: “Cejled with cedar and painted with vermilion.” Jer. 22: 14. The passage Ez. 23: 14, 15, describing the interior of the Assyrian palaces, completely corresponds with and illustrates the monuments of Nimroud and Khorsabad. As Ezekiel lived in Mesopotamia, he had undoubtedly seen the objects which he describes. One of the king's eunuchs usually carried a shield for his use. Goliah had one “bearing his shield, who went before him.” I Sam. 17: 7. Attempts were made to set fire to the gates of a city by a besieging army by placing torches against them: “ Abimelech went hard unto the door of the tower to burn it with fire.” Judges 9: 52. In a bas-relief at Khorsabad, captives are led before the king by a rope fastened to rings passed through the lip and nose. “I will put my hook in thy nose and my bridle in thy lips.” 2 K. 19: 28. The castles of the maritime people at Kouyunjik are distinguished by the shields hung round the walls. “ They hanged their shields upon thy walls round about.” Ez. 27:11. M. Botta states that in letters on the pavement slabs of Khorsabad, traces of copper were still evident, the stone being colored by it. “With an iron pen and lead in the rock forever.” Job 19: 24.

In this connection we insert some biblical illustrations furnished by a friend who spent a number of years in Mesopotamia, and Syria : “ The language of the Old Testament is not more conformed to the laws of the Hebrew, the style of the New Testament is perhaps not so much in accordance with the best models of the Greek, as is the groundwork of the illustrations in both essentially and fundamentally Syrian, using that word in its largest sense as it occurs in Gen. 25:20, embracing Mesopotamia as well as the region west of the Euphrates. It is a Syrian sun, a Syrian wilderness, Syrian fruits, and Syrian manners and customs, that look out upon us, from every page. Hence it is to be expected that the Bible will appear more natural and simple to those living amid the scenes which surrounded the holy men of old, who spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost. Not that anything can take the place of that Spirit or compensate for his absence, for without his teaching none can understand. But of all taught by him, those living in the same places once occupied by those through whom he revealed bis will, will be better able to enter into the spirit and meaning of those expressions by which it is revealed. If we would fully sympathize with Isaiah, we must roam through the vineyards and olivegroves, the gardens of herbs and the desolate wildernesses that met bis eye and were familiar to his thoughts. If we would enter into the sorrows of Jeremiah with an intelligent sympathy, we must move among the famine-stricken inhabitants of lands desolated by the wars, the locusts, and the plagues which still infest the places once watered by bis tears and vocal with bis cries. While the present inbabitants of Western Asia so easily understand things that can be comprehended by us only after long 1849.]

Scriptural İlustrations.


and careful study, our faith in the Bible itself is strengthened and refreshed by the incidental testimony thus afforded to the truth of its declarations.

“There is much yet for the most learned scholars of other lands to learn from the unlettered dwellers in Arab tents. This may seem a strong assertion, and though we are not prepared to prove it directly by adding to the stores of Scripture Illustrations, already derived from that source, yet a glance at a race equally rude and unlettered with the Arab, but still further removed from the centre of the scenes of Scripture narrative, may afford some indirect evidence of the fact and urge some other iuvestigator to pursue a path from which we are persuaded that much as has been obtained, there are still rich harvests of information to be gathered in.

“Surely no one will complain that the selection is unfair, if we choose one of the wild denizens of Koordistan as the illustration. A race of men, 80 savage and unpolished that the very Turks themselves call thein wolves (Koordler-Anglicé, Koords), and their country, the land of wolves (Koordistan). So the Turkish New Testament, John 10: 12, reads thus : • The hireling seeth the Koord coming, and leaveth the sheep and fleeth.' The Koordish shepherd pastures his flocks on the cold, bleak mountains of Koordistan. He is clad in the coarse garments of bis native hills; his girdle of leather, bis coat of cloth woven from goats' hair, and as is sometimes the case his scull cap of camel's hair, would leave him at no loss to understand the description of the dress of the Forerunner of our Lord, who like himself was a dweller in the desert. His outer garment of homemade felt, though it might not give him a correct idea of the material or the mode of preparation, would yet leave bim in no perplexity as to the possibility of a coat's being without seam. This same article of dress, as it serves the double purpose of a cloak by day and bed by night, would lead him into no puzzling conjecture as to the manner in which a man could take ip bis bed and walk.

“His custom, at certain seasons, of separating the sheep from the goats, would give to that illustration of the Judgment all the force of a familiar scene. The grass on the earthen roof of his humble dwelling, which, nourished by the abundant moisture of spring, promises a rich harvest, inder the fierce heat of summer withereth afore it groweth up, a striking illustration of the prosperity of the wicked. The writer could not but he impressed with its beauty as, in the month of April, he saw a bird, that had managed by some means to clamber upon the roof, sporting among white and withered grass from which it sought in vain to gather its accustomed meal.

“ His household mill, propelled neither by water nor steam, but by the stout arms of the women in the fainily, two of whom generally labor toVOL. VI. No. 22.


gether, would afford him a startling idea of the distinction that would take one and leave the other. Besides this, he would be delivered from the blunder of those in other lands, who suppose a woman could lift and throw such a millstone as is used among us, on the head of Abimelech; or that a mass of similar magnitude was ever tied about the neck of a culprit before be was thrown into the sea. The family-quarrels of Abraham or Jacob, only paint to the life the internal broils of the polygamous families of his native village. And the state of Israel without a king, or in the days of Deborah when the highways were deserted and travellers walked through by-ways, only describes the state of society in which he lives. When he reads of the avenger of blood, le might fancy that he read a description of the customs of his own tribesmen, so exactly do they coincide, save that no cities of refuge now open their gates to the sbedder of blood. Living as he does in a state of society which compels every village to imitate the fortifications of a walled city, where, in passing through the country, you find them either occupying the top of a hill, with the houses so arranged as to form one continuous wall of defence, or else sleeping under the guardianship of a castle situated on a similar elevation, such expressions as, “Jehovah is my rock and my fortress, my strength, in whom I will trust, my defence and my bigh tower,' would express the views of God of all others most precious and consoling. The spear and the shield of the days of David are not the weapons of a prist generation, to be found only in the repositories of the curious; but they are his own accustomed weapons, the instruments of his own warfare, even the coat of mail has not become entirely obsolete among his warlike tribes. The timbrels and dances of the danisels of other days, he finds amid the merry-makings of his own native village. He still builds cottages in bis vineyards to protect them from the ravages of the bears that to this day infest bis native bills. He still treads the wine press so as to stain all his raiment. His old bottles, taken from the goats years ago, are too weak and rotten to withstand the ferment of the fresh juice of the grape, and new ones are provided to meet the new demand. The red pottage of Esau forms a portion of his own daily food. Nor, Koord though be be, is be altogether destitute of that interest in the

Perhaps no better illustration of the high tower could be found than that of Koomreh Kaliseh, a castle to the north-west of Amadieh and not far from the Khaboor. It is perched on the very top of a needle-like mountain, one of nature's obelisks, not far from 1000 feet in height. The mountain is entirely isolated from the adjoining range.

“ The summit is built up to an artificial level, completely covered by the castle, and it is only by long and tedious stairways cut in and around the solid rock, that the ascent is practicable at all.

* Immense cisterns have been hewn in the rock to supply water for a siege, and it is only by the slow process of a blockade that the castle has ever been taken.”



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