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Verity. If this be not allowed, I do not see how we can elicit fire and fagot from this adventure ; for I think there is no inseparable connexion between Tythes and Persecution, but in the ideas of a Quaker. And so much for king Melchisedec.

But the learned Professor, who has been hardily brought up in the keen Atmosphere of WHOLESOME SEVERITIES, and early taught to distinguish between de facto and de jure, thought it needless to enquire into Facts, when he was secure of the Right. And, therefore, only slightly and superciliously asks, “What ! was not Abraham, by his very princely office, to punish Idolatry? Were not Melchisedec and Job, and all the heads of Tribes, to do the same?” Why, no : and it is well for Religion that they were not. It is for its honour that such a set of persecuting Patriarchs is no where to be found, but in a poetical Prelection.

4. For in the last place, let it be observed, that as these Patriarchs did not de facto (which appears from their history,) so they could not de jure (which appears from the laws of Nature and Nations) punish Idolatry by the Judge. Because, as hath been shewn, Idolatry is not amenable to civil Justice, but where it becomes Crimen læsce Majestatis. It could not become the crime of lese-majesty under the Patriarchs, unless they had been Gods as well as KINGS. Indeed, they were as much one as the other. However, it is not pretended that their government, though Regal, was Theocratical likewise. The Patriarchs, therefore, could not punish Idolatry by the Judge.

From the Examiner, the Professor (without the least provocation given him) proceeds to the Author of The Divine Legation ; who, he will shew, is as ignorant, absurd, and mad-brained, as Father Harduin himself.

The Author of The Divine Legation had said, that the Writer of the book of Job observed decorum, in imitating the manners of the early scene which he had proposed to adorn. To this, the Professor objects,—“I can never bring myself to allow to a SEMI-BARBAROUS Poet, writing after the Babylonian Captivity, such a piece of subtilty and refinement.”-A mighty piece of refinement truly, for a Writer, who lays his scene in an early age, to paint, the best he could, the manners of that age.—“ Besides” (says the Professor) “which is the principal point, the style savours wonderfully of Antiquity, and its peculiar character is a certain primitive and noble simplicity. So that they who degrade this Book to the times posterior to the Babylonian Captivity, seem to judge almost as insanely of Hebrew literature as Father Harduin did of the Roman, who ascribed the golden Poems of Virgil, Horace, and the rest, to the iron ages of the Monks.”_“ Verum Poetæ semibarbaro post Captivitatem scribenti tantam subtilitatem ut concedam, impetrare a me non possum. Porro vero Stylus Poematis, quod vel maximum est, præcipue vetustatem sapit ; est ejus peculiaris eharacter åpxnio pós. Adeo ut qui id, infra Captivitatem Babylonicam deprimunt, non multo sanius in Hebraicis judicare videantur, quam in Latinis Harduinus ; qui aurea Virgilii, Horatii, cæterorumque poemata ferreis Monachorum Sæculis adscripsit.Idem ib.

The learned Professor is a little unlucky in his comparison. The age of

Job, as fixed by him, and the age of the Writer of his history, as fixed by me, run exactly parallel, not with the times of Virgil and Frederic Barbarossa, as he would insinuate, but with those of Ennius and Virgil. Job, the hero of the Poem, lived in an age when civil Society was but beginning to shew itself, and what is more, in a Country where it never yet was formed : And Ezra (whom I suppose to be the Author of the Poem) was an eminent Citizen in the most perfect civil government in the World, which he was sent home to restore, laden with the literary treasures of the East ; treasures that had been long accumulating under the warm influence of a large and powerful Empire. From the second transplantation of the Republic, Science got footing in Judea ; and true Religion took deeper root in the hearts of its Inhabitants. Henceforward, we hear no more of their absurd Idolatries. A strict adherence to the Law now as much distinguished them from others, as did the singularity of the Law itself. And a studious cultiFation of the LANGUAGE, in which that Law was written, as naturally followed, as it did among the Sarazens, who cultivated the Arabic, on the same principle. And to understand how great this was in both, we need only consider, that each had the same aversion to a translation of their Law into a foreign language. It is true, that in course of time, when the Jewish Policy was abolished, and the Nation was become vagabond upon Earth, while the Arabs, on the contrary, had erected a great Empire, a manifest difference arose between them, as to the cultivation of the two Languages. -Yet for all this, the Professor calls Ezra, a SEMI-BARBARIAN ; though we agree that he wrote by the inspiration of the Most High ; amidst the last blaze indeed, yet in the full lustre of expiring Prophecy.

But the learned Professor has an internal argument from TASTE,* full as good as the other from Chronology. “The book of Job savours of Antiquity, and those who cannot relish it, have as depraved a taste as Father Harduin, who could not distinguish Partridge from Horse-flesh."

The truth is, the Greek and Latin Languages having, for many ages, been the mother-tongues of two of the greatest People upon earth (who had shared between them the Empires of Eloquence and of Arms) became daily more and more copious by the cultivation of Arts; and less and less pure by the extension of Commerce. In these two languages there yet remains a vast number of writings on all sorts of Subjects. So that modern Critics (in the foremost rank of whom will always stand the incomparable BENTLEY) had by long application to them, through their various and progressive refinements and depravations from age to age, acquired a certain sagacity, in passing a tolerable judgment concerning the time of the Writer, by his style and manner. Now Pedantry, which is the ape of Criticism, would mimic the same talent of discernment, in the narrowest and most barren of all Languages ; little subject to change, both from the common genius of the East, and from the peculiar situation of a sequestered People. Of this Language, long since become a dead one, the only remains are in one small Volume; the contents of which, had not Providence been mercifully pleased to secure, while the Tongue was yet living, by a translation

See what hath been said on this head in the 92nd and 93rd pages of this Volume.

into Greek, the HEBREW VERITY, transmitted to us in the manner it was found in the most ancient MSS, where no vowel-points are used, nor space left to distinguish one word from another, and where a great number of terms occur only once, would at this day be a mere arbitrary CIPHER, which every Rabinical or Cabalistic juggler might make the key of his unrevealed Mysteries.—“ Idem accidit etiam Mahometanis” (says Abraham Ekell.) “ante inventa ab Ali Abnaditalebo puncta vocalia : Tanta enim legentium erat dissensio, ut nisi Othomanni coërcita fuisset authoritate, et determinata lectio punctis, quæ Ali excogitaverat, JAM DE ALCORANO ACTUM ESSET.” And if this had been the case of the Arabic of the Alcoran, a copious and a living language, what had become of the Hebrew of the Bible ? a very narrow and a dead one. Of which an ancient Jewish Grammarian gives this character : "Lingua ista [Arabica] elegans est, et longe lateque scriptis dilatata, et qui eam loquitur nulla dictione deficit : Lingua vero sancta pauca est præ illa, cum illius nihil extet nisi quod in Libris Scripturæ reperitur, nec suppeditet mnes dictiones loquendi necessarias." Yet this is the language whose peculiarities of style and composition, correspondent to every age and time, the Professor seems to think, may be as easily distirguished as those of the Greek or Latin Classics. So much for the Author of The Divine Legation : and indeed too much, had not Mr. Locke's defence been involved in his : that excellent person having declared (speaking of the words of Job, that Idolatry was an iniquity to be punished by the Judge) “THIS PLACE ALONE, WERE THERE NO OTHER, is sufficient to confirm their opinion who conclude that book to be writ by a Jew."

From The Divine Legation, the learned Professor turtis again to the Examiner, who seems to sit heavy on his stomach.—This excellent Writer desired to know of the learned, Where they could find a civil or religious Constitution out of Judæa, which declared that the children should suffer for the crime of their Parents. To which the Professor replies in these very words—“In præsens Horatiano illo versiculo contentus abito Examinatorum omnium CANDIDISSIMUS ”—For the present, let this MOST CANDID of all Ezaminers go about his business, and be thankful for this scrap of Horace,

Delicta majorum immeritus lues,

Romane." This is true Poetical payment : IIe is called upon for his reckoning, and he discharges it with an old Song. But the Examiner is not a man to take rhime for reason. He asked for an old system of Laws ; and the contemptuous Professor gives him an old Ballad : But a little more civility at parting had not been amiss ; for he, who did not spare the Bishop, would certainly demolish the Professor, should he take it into his head to examine the Prælections as he hath done the Sermons.

NOTES

ON

THE SIXTH BOOK.

P. 73. A. To give an example only in Bishop Bull, whose words, in a Latin tract, for a future state's not being in the Mosaic Dispensation, I have quoted in the fourth section of this VIth book ; yet in an English posthumous sermon, he seems to speak in a very different manner.— I should not have illustrated this censure by the example of so respectable a Person, but for the indiscretion of my Answerers, who, to support their own ill logic; have exposed his morals.

P. 78. B. Job's Life, by means of the Devil and his false Friends, was an exercise of his Patience ; and his History, by means of Criticism and his Commentators, has since been an exercise of ours. I am far from thinking myself unconcerned in this mischief ; for by a foolish attempt to support his Name and Character, I have been the occasion of bringing down whole bands of hostile Critics upon him, who, like the Sabeans and Chaldeans of old, soon reduced him back to his Dunghill. Some came armed in Latin, some in English, and some in the language of Billingsgate. Most of them were professedly written against me ; but all, in reality, bear hardest on the good old Patriarch.

However, though I am, as I said, to be reckoned, along with these, amongst Job's Persecutors; yet I have this to say for myself, that the vexation I gave him was soon over.

If I scribbled ten pages on his back, my Adversaries and his have made long furrows and scribbled ten thousand. Now, though amongst all these Job found no favour, yet by ill-hap my System did : But to whom I am most obliged, whether to those who attacked it, or to those who espoused it, is not easy to say : for, by a singular event, the Assailants have left me in possession of all its supports, and the Defenders have taken them all away :* the better, I presume, to fit it to their own use. Learned Naturalists tell us of a certain Animal in the watery waste, which, for I know not what conceit, they call Bernard the Hermit; and which, in courtesy, they rank with the testaceous tribe, though Nature (so bountiful to the rest of its kind) hath given This no habitation of its own, but sent it naked and unhoused into the world. In recompence, she has enabled it to figure amongst the best of its tribe : for, by a noble endowment of instinct, it is taught to make its way into the best accommodated, and best ornamented shells of its brethren ; which it either finds empty, or on makes so, to fit them up for its own ease and con

*

venience.

book of

resurs

P. 78. C But if the reader would see the absurdity of supposing the

to be written thus early, and at the same time, to teach the and a future state, exposed at large, he may read the third

• See Mr. G.'s " Discourses on the Book of Job."

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chapter of The free and candid examination of the BISHOP of London's Principles.

P. 79. D. Calmet makes the following observation, in his comment on the 1st verse of chap. xxxviii. “L'Ecrivain de cet Ouvrage a observé de ne point employer ce nom de Jehovah dans les discours directs, qu'il fait tenir à Job et à ses Amis : mais dans les recits, qui sont au commencement et à la fin du Livre, il use de ce terme, comme font d'ordinaire les Ecrivains Hebreux. Ce qui demontre que l'Ouvrage a été ecrit par un Juif, et depuis Moyse; puisque ce nom incommunicable ne fut connu que depuis l'apparition du Buisson ardent."

P. 81. E. The Cornish Critic thinks otherwise. « These false friends” (says he) “are described as having so much fellow-feeling of Job's sufferings, that they sit with him seven days and nights upon the ground without being able to speak to him. If this be the dramatic way of representing false friends, how shall we know the false from the true?” p. 19. Sempronius, in the Play of Cato, is all along warmer than even Cato himself in the cause of liberty and Rome. If this be the dramatic way of representing a false patriot (may our Critic say) how shall we know the false from the true ? I answer, by observing him with his mask off. And do not Job's false friends unmask themselves, when they so cruelly load their suffering Acquaintance with the most injurious reflections? Indeed the Critic deserves our pity, who cannot see that the formal ciroumstance of sitting silent seven days was a dramatic embellishment in the Eastern manner: The not knowing that the number seven was a sacred number amongst the Jews, may indeed be more excusable.-But he goes on. “I have been often struck with surprise to see him [the author of the “ Divine Legation"] very earnestly endeavouring to support his allegorical interpretation of the book of Job by arguments drawn from the contradictions, which he fancies he has there espied, to the truth of the history or tradition upon which his allegory is built. Than which, in my apprehension, there can scarce be a greater absurdity. I would desire him to considerattentively the allegorical ode in Horace, 0 navis, referent, &c. that though every thing therein may be accommodated to a republic, yet it is true in the literal or primary sense only of a ship, and that there is not one single stroke in it that can be understood of a republic and not of a ship; and this might shew him his mistake in applying passages in the book of Job to the Jewish People, MERELY because they cannot be understood of Job: which is directly annihilating the allegory he would establish. For it is as plain that in an allegory two things or persons must be concerned, as that two and two must go to make four.” pp. 99, 100,—The insolence, the fraud, the nonsense of this

passage is as much without example as it was without provocation. I desire to understand, by what other means, except by revelation, an allegorical writing can be known to be allegorical, but by circumstances in it which cannot be reconciled to the story or fable which serves both for a cover and vehicle to the moral ? And yet this man tells us that to attempt to prove the nature of a writing to be allegorical from this circumstance is one of the greatest absurdities. When the allegory is of some length, and takes in the life and adventures of a certain person, it can scarce be otherwise but that some circumstances in it must be varied from the fact, to adapt it to the moral. In a shorter, where the object is more simple, there may be no need for any variation. And this shews the disingenuity of this man, in bringing the ode of Horace into comparison. For which too, the little he knows, he is indebted to the author of the Divine Legation. And how little that is we shall now see.

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