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VI. 19. — “ The priest shall take the sodden shoulder
of the ram.” The heathen in their sacrifices do not offer boiled flesh, either to gods or devils. It is always roasted or prepared with spices. The cakes offered to Pulliār are made ready by putting them on a cloth over the mouth of a vessel full of boiling water.
26. 66 The Lord lift
His countenance upon thee.” “ As I came along the road, I met Rāman, and he lifted up his face upon me;
but I knew not the end;" which means he looked pleasantly. Does a man complain of another who has ceased to look kindly upon him, he says, “ Ah! my friend, you no longer lift up your countenance upon me.”
X. 31. — “ Thou mayest be to us instead of eyes.” An aged father says to his son, who wishes to go to some other village, “ My son, leave me not in my old age ; you are now my eyes.”
66 You are on the look-out for me, your eyes are sharp.” It is said of a good servant, “ he is eyes to his master.”
XI. 5. 6 We remember the fish which we did eat in
Egypt freely; the cucumbers, and the melons, and
the leeks, and the onions, and the garlic.” To an Englishman the loss of these articles would not give much concern, and he is almost surprised at the Israelites repiping at their loss, as at the loss of great delicacies.
The people of the East do not in general eat flesh, nor even fish, so that when they can procure it they consider it a delicacy.
Cucumbers are eaten in abundance in hot weather, and melons are most delicious and plentiful.
I have never seen leeks in the East, and I am doubtful whether they are to be found. But whether or not, there
is much difference of opinion as to the translation of the word.
D'Oyly and Mant have a quotation to this effect :-“Whether the following word, rendered leeks, have that signification, may be doubted. Some think it was the lotus which is a water plant, a kind of water-lily, which the Egyptians used to eat during the heats of summer.”
In the Universal History (vol. i. 486.) it is said, that those “ Egyptians who dwelt in the marshes fed on several plants, which annually grow, particularly the lotus, of which they made a sort of bread.” Of the Arabs, also in the same work), it is recorded “ They make a drink of the Egyptian lotus, which is very good for inward heat.*
The Tamul name of the lotus is the Tāmari. The Ma. teria Medica, under the article Nelumbium Speciosum, says, this plant is the true lotus of the Egyptians, and the Nymphea Nilufer of Sir William Jones.
Its beautiful and fragrant flower is sacred to Lechimy, the goddess of Magā Vishnoo.
It has a bulbous root, and is highly esteemed as an article of food. As it grows in tanks, it can only be had in the hottest weather, when the water is dried up; and, in this, we see a most gracious provision in allowing it to be taken when most required. Its cooling qualities are celebrated all over India, and the Materia Medica says of it, “ This is an excellent root, and is also prescribed medicinally, as cooling and demulcent." The natives eat it boiled, or in curry, or make it into flour for gruels.
I am, therefore, of opinion, that it was the lotus of Egypt respecting which the Israelites were murmuring.
6. " Our soul is dried.” In great hunger or thirst the people say, “Our soul is withered.” “ More than this, sir, I cannot do; my spirit is withered
Savary, in his Letters on Fgypt, says, “ The root is eaten by the inhabitants who live near the Lake Menzala." - Vol. viii,
within me.” " What! when a man's soul is withered, is he not to complain ?"
8. — “ Gathered it, and ground it in mills, or beat it in
a mortar, and baked it in pans.” The Eastern mill consists of two circular stones, about eighteen inches in diameter, and three inches thick. The top stone has a handle in it, and works round a pivot, which has a hole connected with it to admit the corn.
The mortar also is much used to make rice flour. It is a block of wood, about twenty inches high and ten inches in diameter, having a hole scooped out in the centre. The pestle is a stick of about four feet long, made of iron wood, having an iron hoop fixed to the end.
“ Have I conceived all this people ? have I be
Is a man requested to provide food for a great number of people, and does he object to it? he asks, “ What! have I begotten them? Did they proceed from me ? Are they my seed ?"
20. “ Until it come out at your nostrils.” What does this mean? Is it not a figurative expression to show that they were to eat till fully satisfied ? Bishop
you be glutted and cloyed with it.” Is it not a striking illustration that this figure of speech is used at this day to convey the same meaning ? A host says to his guests, “ Now, friends, eat mookamattam, to the nose,” literally, to eat till they are full up to the nose. “O, sir, how can I eat any more ? I am full to the nose, I have no more room.” Of a glutton, it is said, “ That fellow always fills up to the nose!”
22.-—“Shall all the fish of the sea be gathered together It is said of a man with a voracious appetite: “He eat! ay, ay, the fish of the seven oceans would not satisfy him.” 6 Give the creature the beasts of the seven deserts, and he will devour them all.”
XII. 14. — “ If her father had but spit on her face,
should she not be ashamed?” Miriam had greatly offended God, and, therefore, she was to be as a
daughter, whose father had spit in her face. In Deuteronomy xxv. 9. the widow was to spit in the face of her late husband's brother, if he refused to marry her. And Job (xxx. 10.) in his great misery says, of his enemies, they “ spare not to spit in my face; ” and in reference to our Saviour, they did “spit in his face.”
The most contemptuous, the most exasperating and degrading action, which one man can do to another is to spit in his face. A person receiving this insult is at once worked up to the highest pitch of anger, and nothing but the rank or power of the individual will prevent him from seeking instant revenge. Indeed, such is the enormity attached to this offence, that it is seldom had recourse to, except in extreme cases.
A master, whose slave has deeply offended him, will not beat him (for that would defile him), but he spits in his face. When his anger is at the greatest height, he will not even condescend to do that, but order a fellow-servant, or some one near, to spit in his face. Is a person too respectable for this indignity; then the offended individual will spit on the ground.
Schoolmasters, also, when very angry with a scholar, do not, as in England, begin to beat him, but spit in his face, or order some one else to do it.
When the kingfisher makes a noise, they who hear it spit on the ground, to prevent the evil which is supposed to follow. When a child becomes greatly alarmed, the father or mother To a person
immediately spit in its face to remove the fear. * making use of offensive language, bystanders say, “Spit in his face.”
XIII. 32.—A land that eateth
the inhabitants." Of a very unhealthy place it is said, “ That evil country eats up all the people.” “ We cannot remain in these parts, the land is eating us up.” “I go to that place! never ! it will eat me up.” Of England it is said, in reference to her victories, “ She has eaten up all countries.”
XIV. 9. - " Their defence.” Hebrew, “shadow.” A poor man says of his rich friend, “He is my shadow ;” i. e. he is my defence. My shadow is gone;” meaning, he has lost his defence. “Alas ! those poor people have lost their shadow."
XXI.8. 66 Make thee a fiery serpent
set it upon
a pole." It is said in the Scanda Purāna, that in the town of Kānche, i. e. Conjeveram, there was a pillar, round which if a person bitten by a serpent walked three times, and earnestly looked at it, he would be cured.
Holman, the blind traveller, says, “ Mothers in Russia, for fear of your casting an evil eye upon their children, will, before they allow you to see them, desire you to turn from them, and spit three times on the ground, with a view to eject the evil spirit; or, if you happen to have seen them without this precaution, the mother turns round and does it.” – Vol. i. 256. Mungo Park says, “ They had not travelled far before the attendants insisted upon stopping, to prepare a saphic or charm, to ensure a good journey: this was done by muttering a few sentences, and spitting upon a stone, which was laid upon the ground. The same ceremony was repeated three times, after which the negroes proceeded with the greatest confidence.” Mungo Park also says of the Mandingoes, when the child's head is shaved, for the first time, “ The priest whispers a few sentences in the ear, and spits three times into its face.” When a similar operation is performed for a Hindoo child, the Brahmin (or another person) spits three times in the child's face, to keep off the evil spirits.