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sons of his family, sufficient for the support of an hundred other persons, who place themselves, one after another on the ground about the table, cross-legged, like taylors. “ So that a dazen of these tables in different parts of a house, and served almost at the same time, are sufficient for a thousand or twelve hundred persons, that a Bey, or other great lord of this country, generally keeps in attendance."

The number of attendants the great men of the East affect, the supposed magnificence of abundance of provision, and the charity in the custom of giving what remains to the poor, all conspired to make the quantity of provisions consumed by these eminent personages, both of more ancient and of more modern times, very large.

Ebn Toulon, as to the magnificence of his table, surpassed all the other kings of Egypt, ever reckoned one of the richest and most fruitful countries in the world. Maillet expresses astonishment at it. How magnificent then, considering the difference of countries, the table of Solomon! With what royal splendor did he govern Israel ! exceeded only, perbaps, by an after-king of a country, alway looked upon as very opulent, alway affecting dignity, but far surpassing every Jewish prince in grandeur, every contemporary king, without any manner of doubt. .


Drinking Vessels often made of Gold in the East.

The magnificence of Solomon, particularly with respect to his drinking-vessels, has not been exceeded by modern Eastern princes

They were all of gold, and it should seem of the purest gold, 1 Kings x. 21. The gold plate of the kings of Persia has been extremely celebrated, and is mentioned in Sir. J. Chardin's MS. note on this passage of the sacred historian: he observes in that note, that the plate of the king of Persia is of gold, and that very fine, exceeding the standard of ducats, and equal to those of Venice, which are of the purest gold.

The vessels of gold, we are told in Olearius,' were made by the order of Shah Abbas esteemed the most glorious of the princes of the Sefi royal family, who died in 1629. It seems that he caused seven thousand two hundred marks of gold to be melted upon this occasion; that his successors made use of it whenever they feasted strangers; and that it consisted chiefly of dishes, pots, flagons, and other vessels for drinking.

A French mark is eight of their ounces, and is but four grains lighter than an English

2 P. 946, 947



ounce troy. Abbas then melted on this occasion near thirty-six thousand English troy ounces of the purest gold, or almost forty-one three-fourths Jewish talents. Astonishing magnificence of Persia ! Nor have we reason to think that of Solomon was inferior. We may believe, sure, his royal drinking-vessels were of equal weight, when the two hundred targets of gold which Solomon made, 1 Kings x. 16, weighed but little less than the drinkingvessels of Shah Abbas. Sir J. Chardin's way of comparing the glory of Solomon, with that of a most illustrious monarch of Persia of late ages, is perhaps one of the most efficacious methods of impressing the mind with an apprehension of the magnificence of this ancient Israelitish king, and, at the same time, appears to be perfectly just.


Horns also used as drinking-vessels in the East.

Horns also were made use of among the Jews for keeping some liquids, if not for drinkingvessels.

That they were wont sometimes to keep oil in · Philosaphical Transactions Abridged, vol. vii. part iv. p. 46. · For according to Bishop Cumberland, a talent weighed 3000 shekels, and a shekel weighed 219 grains now 7290 marks-- 27.417.600 grains=125.194 shekels 41 talents and 2194 shekels,

{ 120.000 shekels.

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a horn, appears from 1 Sam. xvi. 1; 13, 1 Kings i. 39. ; it may however be amusing to hear that they are made use of still in some countries, which are less acquainted with the arts of life than many other places, as we are assured by Sir John Chardin's MS. they are : it is the custom, that he tells us, of Iberia, Colchis, and the adjacent country, where the arts are little practised, to keep liquors in horns, and to drink out of them.

They were doubtless originally the hollow horns of animals that were made use of ; art might be afterwards employed to hollow them more perfectly, and they might in the days of David be shaped like horns, though made of silver and gold, especially vessels kept in the sanctuary. Such an one, 1 apprehend, is that horn kept in the cathedral of York, presented to it by one of our Northern princes, as it is supposed, about the beginning of the eleventh century, of which a copper-plate was not long since published by the Antiquarian Society.

The horn of Ulphus, kept at York, bas a chain fastened to it in two places, by which it might be hung up. It is reasonable to believe the Eastern horns may have the same convenience, though Sir J. Chardin does not mention it. So there is no account of such a chain, in the description that is given us in the Philosophical Transactions Abridged, vol, v. pt.

• They are used for this purpose in several European countries. Edit.

Sir John Chardin mentions such horns in his printed travels ; some were horns of the rhinoceros, some of deer,


II. p. 131, 132, as fixed to the horn of gold, or to the Oldenburg horn of silver, in the royal repository at Copenhagen ; yet, as that of Ulphus is so accommodated, there is reason to think that those other Northern horns have their chains too. May not this account for the Prophet's supposing drinking-vessels were hung up, Is. xxii. 24 ? · There is so much conformity between the ancient horns of the North and those now used in the East, both having them of various metals, some of them being bullocks' horns, tipt with gold about the edges, others of ivory, unicorns' horns, &c. and all highly ornamented; and these present Eastern horns being apparently derived from ancient usage : that the thought of Isaiah’s referring to drinking-borns hung up seems perfectly natural,

They are also of different proportions, as Isaiah supposes they were anciently. A common horn is, according to Sir. John Chardin, eight inches high, and two inches broad at the top: such a horn about a quarter of a pint, I apprehend, since I have found a conical glass of that width at top, and half that height, held half that quantity, upon measuring the the common sort those of oxen and sheep. He adds, that this custom of using them for drinking cups, and embellishing them, has been all along among the Eastern people, p. 228. These horns were embellished as the richer sort of cups, (which was with precious stones,) and of different proportions. The ordinary ones about eight inches high, and two broad at the top, very black, and polished. H. saw these at Teflis. That at York is, I think, twentyseven inches high, and about fire inches broad at the top, according to the plate.

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