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dered by Ziba. Great men are often compared to the messengers (the true meaning of angel) of the gods. Thus men of great wisdom or eloquence are said to be like the angels of the gods. “Ah! my lord, you know all things; you are one of the angels of the gods."
Sometimes the person will not address you in a direct way, but speak as to a third person loud enough for you to hear. “ Ah ! what wisdom he has; there is nothing concealed from him. Whence has he had his wisdom ? from the gods Yes, yes, all things are known to him.” Then turning to you, they look humbly in your face, and say, “ My lord, there are only two for me: God is the first; but you are the second.”
24." And the king said, “let him turn to his own
house, and let him not see MY FACE.” (Gen.
xliii. 3.) Few things are more offensive in the East than to refuse to show yourself to those who come to see you. Send your servant to say you are engaged, or that the individual may go, and he will be distressed, or enraged, and not hesitate to express his feelings. Should there, however, be any reason to hope, he will wait for hours at your door, nay, he will come day after day, till he shall have seen your face. They have an opinion, that if they once gain admission into your presence a great point is attained, and so it is; for, what with their eloquence, and tears, and abject submissions, they seldom fail to make an impression. Even low people, who have no particular business, often call upon you that they may be able to say that they have seen your face. When a person says he has not seen the face of the
it he has not gained his suit. See the high caste native passing along the road; a humble suppliant is there to attract his attention: and let him turn his face another way, and it is as a dagger through the poor man's soul.
XV. 30.-" Had his head covered, and he went bare
foot.” Thus did David conduct himself in his sorrow, when Absalom had rebelled against him. But the Hindoos do not cover the head; they take a part of their robe and cover the face. In going to a funeral, the turban is generally taken off, and a part of the garment is held over the face. Nor is this merely common at funerals, for on all occasions of deep sorrow they observe the same thing. At such times, also, they always go “barefoot.”
XVI. 13.-“ Shimei went along on the hill's side, over
against him, and cursed as he went and cast
dust." Who, in the East, has not often witnessed a similar scene? Listen to the maledictions: they are of such a nature that evil spirits only could have suggested them. Look at the enraged miscreant: he dares not come near for fear of punishment, but he stands at a distance, vociferates his imprecations, violently throws about his hands; then stoops to the ground, and takes up handfuls of dust, throws it in the air, and exclaims, “ Soon shalt thou be as that—thy mouth shall soon be full of it - look, look, thou cursed one, as this dust, so sbalt thou be."
XVII. 8.—“ Thou knowest thy father and his men,
that they be mighty men, and they be chafed in their minds, as a bear robbed of her whelps."
(Hosea xiii. 8.) The Hindoos are as much afraid of bears * as of any other animal of the forest; hence, when the letter-carriers and
* The Eastern bear is much smaller than that of the North, and exceedingly active. A friend of mine had made a large hole near a tank, in which to conceal himself, in order to shoot deer, or other animals, which might go thither to drink. He was in his retreat before daylight, when in a moment he saw something near to him, and the next instant was in its embrace. He, being a powerful man, seized his foe by the ears, and others have to travel through districts infested by them, they are always armed with a crooked knife, in the shape of a sickle: thus, when the bear is preparing to give them a hug, one cut from the instrument will send it off. When the female is robbed of her whelps, she is said to be more fierce than any other animal : hence, many sayings refer to her rage, and are applied to the fury of violent men. "I will tear thee to pieces as a bear which has cubbed.”
Begone, or I will jump upon thee as a bear.” When a termagant goes with her children to scold, it is said, “ There goes the she-bear and her whelps."
19.-" The woman took and spread a covering over the
well's mouth, and spread ground corn thereon.” This was done to conceal Jonathan and Ahimaaz, who had gone down the well to escape from the servants of Absalom.
Wells in the East have their mouths level with the ground, hence, nothing is more easy than to put a mat or covering over the opening to conceal them from the sight.
Who has not seen corn or flour spread on mats in the sur: to dry ? The woman affected to have this object in view when she spread a covering over the well : her “ground corn" was spread thereon to dry in the sun. The men were in the well, and when Absalom's servants came, and enquired, “Where is Ahimaaz and Jonathan;" she said, “ They be gone over the brook of water.”
In the Kandian war great numbers were required to follow the army as bearers, cooks, and messengers, and such was the aversion of the people to the duty, that government was obliged to use force to compel them to go. And it was no uncommon thing, when the officers were seen to approach a cottage, for the husband or sons to be concealed as were Ahimaaz and Jonathan.
wrenched him backwards and forwards with all his might; he then got free, gave the animal a swing, and he ran off with great speed: it was a bear. My friend the magistrate was more careful in future.
XVIII. 25.-" There is tidings in his mouth.” This was said by David when the watchman told him that there was a man running alone. He proved to be Ahimaaz, who had escaped from the well, and had run to tell David, 66 All is well.” Is a man seen to run fast, it is said, “ Ah! there is news in his mouth.” “Why have you come so fast?" “In my mouth there is news.” To a man in trouble, it is often said, “ Fear not, a man will soon come with tidings in his mouth.”
32. — “ Cushi answered, the enemies of my lord the
king, and all that rise against thee to do thee hurt, be that
young man is.” This was a delicate way of telling David that the rebel Absalom was dead. A person, in communicating, by letter, intelligence of the death of a friend, does not always say, in so many plain terms, “ He is dead;" but, “ Would that all our enemies were now as our friend Muttoo." they all as he, we should have peace in our village.” in writing to an uncle concerning the death of his father, says, “Ah! the children of your brother are now given unto the Lord.” “ Would that our enemies were now as our father; they will now rejoice over us.”
6 Ah! were
XIX. 29.-" I have said.” This form of speech is exceedingly common when a man wishes to confirm any thing, or when he wants to give weight to a promise. To show that all will be fulfilled, he says, Nan-chon-nain-nea, “Oh! I have said it.”
XX. 1. - “ We have no part in David, neither have
we inheritance in the son of Jesse." When slaves are liberated from their owners they say, “We have no pangu, i. e. part, in them, nor they in us.” It is also very common to mention the name of the person, and that of his father; and this sometimes implies disgrace, espe
cially when the family has arisen from obscurity, and, therefore, to allude to its origin is to insult the descendants.
XXI. 12.-“ Beth-shan." Calmet says on this, “ House, or temple of the tooth, or of ivory; from na beth, a house, and 7shen, a tooth. This title means, no doubt, simply the temple of the tooth, but we have no reason to conclude that a tooth only was worshipped in any temple in Canaan; it must have been the symbol of some deity.” Calmet then proceeds to show that this may have been the god Ganesa of the East, who is represented with an elephant's head, and supposes the tusks are alluded to by the tooth. I am not aware, however, of any such distinction being made in that deity, and think it unlikely that his tusk would give the name to a temple.
Is it not a curious fact, that the tooth of Buddhu is the most SACRED and precious relic, in the opinion of the inhabitants of Siam, of the Burman empire, and of Ceylon? That tooth is kept in the temple of Kandy, the capital of Ceylon. Buddhism is the religion of China, and of those countries alluded to, and it was formerly the religion of multitudes in India.
* Doctor Finlayson says, in his account of Siam, “ The priests of the Siamese believe their religion (the Buddhist) had its origin in Lanca,” which is the sacred name of Ceylon in all parts of the East, and which is referred to in all the sacred books by that name. The priests (of the Siamese) state, that 2340 years have elapsed since the religion was first introduced, a date which is said to be stated in their sacred books, and particularly in that called Pra-sak-ka-rah, which was written by Buddha himself, or at least under his direction. - Page 228. 1821.
An American missionary in the Burman empire, in a letter dated 1829, to a friend in Ceylon, says, “ The author of the Buddhist religion died 2372 years ago.” Thus it appears from two calculations, made by different men, in different countries, and for different purposes, there is only a variation of 32 years, which allows from the time the religion was ESTABLISHED to the death of its founder.
If we admit the accuracy of these calculations, and those of Usher and others, we shall see that the tooth of Buddha could not have been that which was worshipped at Beth-shan, because that place is mentioned