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belly.” “ Now they are beginning to errikuther," i. e. burn. 66 Ashes ! ashes ! thou art all ashes ! ”
29. - "I am a brother to dragons." Dr. Boothroyd prefers, “ A brother am I to sea monsters.” Dr. Harris says, the original is variously rendered; dragons, serpents, sea monsters, and whales. The Tamul translation has it, “I am a brother to the malli-pāmbu,” i. e. the rock snake, or boa constrictor *; and wherever the term dragon occurs (in that translation), it is rendered in the same way. Some of these serpents are of immense size, and possess great muscular power. If they once get folded round the body of an animal, it is impossible for it to escape. A gentleman of my acquaintance, when on a shooting excursion, heard a sudden scream; he ran to the spot, and saw a beautiful deer in the embrace of one of these serpents: he took his rifle, and put a ball through its head; its folds instantly became loose, and the deer was set at liberty, but died soon after. He brought the reptile home, and it measured eighteen feet. I know not what induced the translators thus to render it by the name of that monster, except they have taken the idea from the prophets Micah and Jeremiah, “ I will make a wailing like the dragons,” and, “ they snuffed up wind like dragons ; malli-pāmbu is said to make a dreadful wailing in the night, and when in want of prey to inhale the wind for food. The sacred writers also describe it as loving to dwell in desert places, which is another feature of its character.
31. — “My harp also is turned to mourning." The people are very fond of the yāl or guitar, also of the kinaru or harp. When a person is in trouble, his instrument is also considered to be in sorrow. Many stories are told of the fascinating powers of the ancient musicians. “ There was once a man who neglected all his affairs for the sake of his instrument: at which his wife became much dissatisfied; and asked him, in a taunting way, “Will you ever gain a tusked elephant and a kingdom by your harp?' He was displeased with her, and said, “I will.' He then went to the king of Kandy, and on his harp asked his majesty for a tusked elephant and a kingdom. The king was so delighted, that he gave him the elephant and the province of Jaffna. The musician then returned, and founded the town of Yal-Pānam,” i. e. the harp and the songster; or, as some render it, the harp-town, which we call Jaffna.
* I have some doubts about the propriety of this name, as I think its proper designation is “boa-fasciata.”
XXXI. 1.-" I made a covenant with mine eyes. Has a man a strong desire to go on a pilgrimage to a distant temple, and should his friends remonstrate with him, he will say, “ I have made an udam-puddiki,” (i.e. a covenant with my eyes ;) “I must go." Does a father reprove his son for improper conduct, he replies, “ What can I do? She has made a covenant with my eyes. My friend, let us have your opinion on this subject.”—“ I will not.” “ Why ?”" Be
I have made a covenant with my mouth.”
22. — “ Then let mine arm fall from my shoulder blade,
and mine arm be broken from the bone.” It is said, “ If I have done as you say, may these legs be broken.” “ Yes, let these eyes be blind, if I have seen the thing you mention."
May this body wither and faint, if I am guilty of that crime.” “ If I uttered that expression, then let the worms eat out this tongue.”
32. — “The stranger did not lodge in the street: but I
opened my doors to the traveller.' No people can be more kind and hospitable to travellers of their own caste, than those of the East; and even men of the lower grades have always places to go to. See the stranger enter the premises, he looks at the master and says, parathease, i. e. a pilgrim, and he is allowed to take up his abode for the
night. For his entertainment, he has to repeat the puthenam, news of his country and journey, or any legend of olden time.
36. — “I would take it upon my shoulder, and bind it
crown to me.” This refers to the accusations against the innocent Job. A man charged of a crime which he has not committed, says, “ If I am guilty, I will carry it on my head.”
- I am sure you have done this deed." __“I?”
66 Yes.” 66 Then will I wear it on my head.” 66 That fellow wears his crimes on his head, i. e. he is not ashamed of them.” The head is reckoned superior to all other parts of the body.*
38. — “ If my land cry against me, or that the furrows
likewise thereof complain.” The Hebrew has instead
of " complain,” weep. Does a man, through idleness or meanness, neglect to cultivate, or water, or manure his fields and gardens, those who pass that way say, “ Ah! these fields have good reason to complain against the owner. “ Sir, if you defraud these fields, will they not defraud you?” “ The fellow who robs his own lands, will he not rob you ?” 66 These fields are in great sorrow, through the neglect of their owner.”
- If I have eaten the fruits thereof without money, or have caused the owners thereof to lose their
life.” Was not Job the OWNER of the land ? Does he not
say in the preceding verse my land ? How then could he have caused the owners to lose their life? Dr. Boothroyd has it,
or have grieved the soul of its MANAGERS.” Coverdale has it, “ grieved any of the PLOUGHMEN.” The Tamul has the same idea: “ If I have eaten the fruits thereof without paying for the labour, or have afflicted the soul of the cultivators."
*“ Whenever Terregannocick received a present, he placed each article first on his right shoulder, then on his left : and when he wished to express still higher satisfaction, he rubbed it over his head." Franklin's Journey to the Polar Sea, vol. ii. p. 173.
Great land owners in the East do not generally cultivate their own fields: they employ men, who find all the labour, and have a certain part of the produce for their remuneration. The cultivator, if defrauded, will say, “ The furrows I have made, bear witness against him; they complain.” Job therefore means, if the fields could complain for want of proper culture, or if he had afflicted the tiller, or eaten the produce without rewarding him for his toils, then “ let thistles grow instead of wheat, and cockle instead of barley.”
XXXII. 5. - There was no answer in the mouth of
these three men.” When men are completely confounded, when they have not a word to say in reply, it is said, “ in their vayila, i. e. mouth, there is no answer."
XXXIII. 6.—“ I also am formed out of the clay.” “ The body and the herb, which come from the clay, will also return to it.”—“ The body must return to the dust, why then trouble yourself? Will it exist for an immeasurable period ?”
16. — “ He openeth the ears.” It is usual to say, “ I will open that fellow's ears. I will take away the covering.” “Ah! will you not open your ears ?”
XXXIV. 7. “ What man is like Job, who drinketh up
scorning like water ?” Of a man who does not care for contempt or hatred, it is said, “ He drinks
their hatred like water.” When a man is every way superior to his enemies, “ Ah! he drinks them up like water.” “ He is a man of wonderful talents, for he
drinks up science as water.” Thus, Elihu wished to show that Job had hardened himself, and was insensible to scorn, for he had swallowed it as water.
XXXVI. 3.-" I will fetch my knowledge from afar.” There is something in our nature which places superior importance on any thing which comes from afar. When a man has to contend with a person who is very learned, should a friend express a doubt as to the result, or advise him to take great care, he will say, “ Fear not, veggutooratila, from very far I will fetch my arguments.” “ The arguments which are afar off shall now be brought near.” “ Well, sir, since you press me, I will fetch my knowledge from afar.”
XXXVII. 7.- “ He sealeth up the hand of every
man.” (John vi. 27. Eph. i. 13. 1 Cor. ix. 2.
Rev. xx. 3.) Has a man something in his hand which he does not wish to show to another, he says, “ My hand is sealed.” Of a gentleman who is very benevolent, it is said, “ His hand is sealed for charity only.” “ Please, sir, give me this.” — “ What ! is my hand sealed to give to all ?”
66 What secret was that which Tamban told you last evening ?"_“I cannot answer; my mouth is sealed.”
“ That man never forgets an injury.”—“ No, no, he seals it in his mind.” A husband who has full confidence in his wife, says, “I have sealed her." Canticles iv. 12. To seal a person, therefore, is to secure him, and to prevent others from injuring him.
22.-“ Fair weather cometh out of the north." The
Hebrew has for fair weather, "gold.” The Tamul translation may be paraphrased, “ Equal to the brightness of gold;" i. e. as the sky appears in fair weather.
XXXVIII. 3. - Gird
up now thy loins like a man." “ Well, Tamby, you have a difficult task before you ;