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occurring 10,000 B. C., and the “ development” and " strata” of languages, &c., according to his system, and then have claimed the Bible as authority, telling us we should find “ an account taken of every letter and figure in the Scripture narrative. If any x's or z's, or other letters, or any figures, had remained unappropriated, he could have found a “place” for them. We say, had he done this, the process would have been about as rational as that which he has adopted in relation to the history of Abraham and his successors in the patriarchal line.
Bunsen lays great stress on the improbability of a man having a son at the age of a hundred years, especially in such a land as Palestine, this improbability being even a corner-stone in his argument. With him, in his “philosophy,” the assertion of the sacred writer that the event is miraculous, and the indorsement of the miracle by an inspired apostle (Rom. iv. 19, and Heb. xi. 11), go for nothing. Thus the New Testament suffers alike with the Old under this rationalizing process. · When we first read the following caustic criticism on Bunsen's work, we thought it probably a little extravagant. But we are now prepared to receive it as just.
“Sesostris is the great name of Egyptian antiquity. Even the builders of the Pyramids and of the Labyrinth shrink into insig. nificance by the side of this mighty conqueror. Nevertheless, his historical identity is not proof against the dissolving and recompounding process of the Egyptological method. Bunsen distributes him into portions, and identifies each portion with a different king. Sesostris, as we have stated, stands in Mane
tho's list as third king of the twelfth dynasty, at 3320 B. C., and • a notice is appended to his name, clearly identifying him with
the Sesostris of Herodotus. Bunsen first takes a portion of him, and identifies it with Tosorthrus (written Sesorthrus by Eusebius), the second king of the third dynasty, whose date is 3119 B. C., being a difference in the dates of seventeen hundred and ninety-nine years — about the same interval as between Augustus Cæsar and Napoleon. He then takes another portion, and identifies it with Sesonchosis, a king of the twelfth dynasty; a third portion of Sesostris is finally assigned to himself. It seems that these three fragments make up the entire Sesostris.” *
B. Page 27.
CHRONOLOGY OF BOËCKH.
Božckh makes the duration of the reign of the gods to be seventeen Sothic cycles, beginning July 20, B. C. 30,522, and reaching to July 20, B. C. 5703. The governing principle in his system seems to be the aforesaid cycle, and the distinguished author did not hesitate to make alterations in numbers in order to apply it. His scheme is confessedly artificial. Thus Bunsen says, “We believe that no Egyptologer has ever ventured upon so many and such bold alterations in the dates of Manetho as Boëckh was obliged to propose, in order to make good his assumption that Manetho's chronology was an artificial system of applying cyclical numbers to Egyptian history. There is every reason to suppose that the illustrious master of Hellenic archæology long ago abandoned a
* Sir G. C. Lewis's Survey of the Astronomy of the Ancients, p. 369.
theory so triumphantly refuted by the most stubborn facts of contemporary evidence. On the other hand, it is to be hoped that Egyptologers will not hesitate to admit the instinct of genius which led him to assume a certain connection between Manetho and the Sothic cycles, inasmuch as his three books of Egyptian history were divided according to that cycle of 1460 years.” (Vol. v. p. 119.) · The first part of this criticism appears emiently just. We doubt, however, if the “instinct of genius” ever led any one“ to assume" anything in chronology or history.
C. Page 29.
CHRONOLOGY OF RODIER.
RODIER places his highest date in human history at about B. C. 24,000. This, however, is not the beginning of history; for before this, at undefined dates, he makes to have taken place the “ dissemination of the ProtoScyths,” and the movement of the Japetite or Indo-European races toward Western Asia and Europe. But about B. C. 24,000, he says, took place “ the breaking up of the ice at the north pole. The shock which this gave to the crust of the earth was perhaps the cause of the sudden cold which drove the Japetite Aryans from primitive Asia.” Intermediate between B. C. 24,000 and 21,778 was the commencement of the period Phta in Egypt, and the outline of Egyptian civilization. At B. C. 21,778 was the commencement of the period of Phre. At B.C. 19,564 was the commencement of the period of Osiris, and his conquests in Ethiopia and Asia. At B.C. 19,337 was the commencement of the period of the “ Manouantaras” in India, a “ date chronologically precise and approximatively verified by astronomy.” At B. C. 14,611 was the •• era of Ma. Chronologically the number is 14,606; astronomical verifications, very precise, give 14,611." And here the author places the “ origin of the great cycles of fourteen hundred and seventy-five years, and of the vague year of three hundred and sixty-five days.” At B. C. 13,901 he places the “ era of the Maha-Yuga, the origin of the period called Satya-Yuga, the Institutes of Manu, or legislator Vaivasvata, surnamed Satyavrata, the end of the Vedic epoch, the recension of the Vedas. .... The exactness of this date is as rigorous as that of the Egyptian date.” Omitting the mention of some intermediate dates, at which important historical events are represented to have taken place, we come down to B. C. 9101, a date which is “rigorously verified,” at which “ Maya compiled the treatise of astronomy called the Suryâ Siddhantâ." At B. C. 4286 is another “ date rigorously verified by astronomy," as that when the Egyptian calendar was reformed, &c., &c. These specifications are sufficient to place before the reader the character and pretensions of this remarkable work.
Now, the question arises, How does this author make out these high dates, some of which, he affirms, are verified approximatively, and others rigorously, by astronomy? I need only to indicate his processes in two or three instances. Take first the date B. C. 9101, which he says is “rigorously verified." when the astronomical treatise called the Surya Siddhanta was compiled Haring translated that work from the Sanskrit, while in India, I am pretty well acquainted with it, and with the astronomical literature of the Hindus; and I may state that the treatise itself contains astronomical data which refer the compilation of the work, in its present form, to the latter part of the fifth or the first part of the sixth century after Christ, though it doubtless comprises astronomical knowledge which had existed among the Hindus for centuries before. These are the facts as recognized by all oriental scholars who have given attention to this subject
Now, how does our author make out the date of B. C. 9101? In this wise: In the commencement of the trea tise, it is said it was revealed by the Sun to the Asura Maya, at the close of the Krita or Satya-Yuga (or age) of the present Maha-Yuga, which consists of four million three hundred and twenty thousand solar years. But these are equal to twelve thousand divine years, or years of the gods — one year of the gods being equal to three hundred and sixty years of mortals, i. e., solar years. This is expressly stated in the work itself. Now, our author, setting aside or ignoring the express declarations of the treatise, and of other astronomical treatises, makes the Maha-Yuga to consist of twelve thousand sidereal years, instead of four million three hundred and twenty thousand; and this would bring the end of the KritaYuga at B. C. 9101, when the Surya Siddhanta was compiled. The declaration in the treatise itself makes the