« הקודםהמשך »
Saturn; Musteri, Jupiter; Muret (Meryt), Mars; Samsi (Shems), the Sun; Alligasir (the brilliant), Venus; Kitr (Kedr, the obscure), Mercury; Kamer (Kæmer), the Moon. Whether the name of Parcifal be taken from the Arabic Parsé or Parseh Fal, the pure or the poor dummling, as conjectured by Mr. Görres, must be left to the decision of the Oriental scholar: but the narrative already given affords a strong corroboration of his opinion, that Flegetanis is a corruption of Felek-daneh, an astronomer.
The Breton and Provençal fictions, as we have seen, unite in bringing this mysterious vessel from the East, a quarter of the globe whose earliest records present us with a marvellous cup, as extraordinary in its powers as any thing attributed to the Graal. Such a cup is well known to have occupied a conspicuous place among the traditions of the Jews, and from the Patriarch Joseph 16, the chaste and provident minister of Pharaoh, to have descended to the great object of Hebrew veneration and glory, the illustrious king Solomon "7. It will, therefore, be no matter of surprise to those who remember the ta
116 Is not this it in which my lord lon discovered the cup, and having exdrinketh ? And whereby indeed he di- tracted the volume, an angel revealed vineth? Gen. xliv. 5. In Norden's time the key to its mysterious writing to one the custom of divining by a cup was still Troes a Greek: and hence the stream continued. “Je sais,” dit Baram Cashef of occult science, which has so benefide Derri au Juif, qui servoit d'entre- cially unfolded the destinies of the West.
aux voyageurs Européens, A parallel fable is found in Messenian “quelles gens vous etes ; j'ai consulté ma story. When the Lacedæmonians stormcoupe, et j'y ai trouvé, que vous etiez ed the fortress on mount Ira, Aristoceux, dont un de nos prophêtes a dit, menes, warned by the Delphic oracle, qu'il viendroit des Francs travestis, qui secreted in the earth some unknown arferaient enfin venir un grand nombre ticle, which was to be a future talisman d'autres Francs, qui feroient la conquéte of security to his unfortunate countrydu pays, et examineroient tout.” Voyage men. After the battle of Leuctra, the d'Egypte et de Nubie, iii. 68. The le- Argive commander Epiteles was directcanomanty of the Greeks is well known. ed in a dream to exhume this mysterious
117 The Clavicula Salomonis contains deposit. It was then discovered to be a a singular variation of this fiction. The brazen ewer, containing a roll of finely supernatural knowledge of Solomon was beaten tin, on which were inscribed the recorded in a volume, which Rehoboam mysteries of the great divinities (Two Huse inclosed in an ivory ewer, and deposited záaw Isão... Trasth. Paus. iv. c. 20. in his father's tomb. On repairing the 26.) royal sepulchre, some wise men of Baby
lismanic effect of a name in the general history of fiction, that a descendant of this distinguished sovereign should be found to write its history; or that another Joseph should be made the instrument of conveying it to the kingdoms of Western Europe. In Persian fable, the same miraculous vessel has been bestowed upon the great Jemshid 95, the pattern of perfect kings, in whose reign the golden age was realized in Iran, and under whose mild and beneficent sway it became a land of undisturbed felicity. On digging the foundations of Estakar (Persepolis), this favourite of Ormuzd, and his legitimate representative upon earth, discovered the goblet of the Sun; and hence the cause of all those blessings which attended his prosperous reign, and his unbounded knowledge of both terrestrial and celestial affairs. From the founder of the Persian monarchy it passed into the hands of Alexander the Great 19, the hero of all later Oriental fiction; and Ferdusi introduces the Macedonian conqueror addressing this sacred cup as “the ruling prince of the heavenly bodies, and as the
auspicious emblem of his victorious career." By other Eastern poets it has been referred to as a symbol of the world, and the fecundating powers of Nature; while others again have considered it as the source of all true divination and augury, of the
118 “Giam en Perse signifie un coupe ont pu fournir aux Orientaux le sujet de ou verre à boire et un miroir. Les Ori. cette fiction. Un poete Turc dit, Lorsentaux, qui fabriquent cette espèce de que j'aurai été éclairé des lumières du vases ou ustensiles de toutes sortes des ciel, mon ame deviendra le miroir du metaux aussi bien que de verre ou de monde, dans lequel je decouvrai les secrystal, et en plusieurs figures diffe- crets les plus cachés.” Herbelot Bibrentes, mais qui approchent toutes de lioth. Orient. s. v, Giam. spherique, donnent aussi ce nom à un 119 “ Quum Alexander pervenisset in globe celeste. Ils disent, que l'ancien palatium suum, gyrantes exierunt Græci roi Gianschid, qui est le Salomon des locis suis, et læti non viderunt noctem Perses, et Alexandre le Grand, avoient regis, (viderunt autem) quatuor pocula. de ces coupes, globes, ou miroirs, par le Gyrantibus ita locutus est (Alexander): moyen desquels ils connoissoient toutes Salvi estote, lætamini hoc fausto osnine les choses naturels, et quelquefois même nostro, hic enim scyphus in pugna est les surnaturelles. La coupe qui servoit à salus nostra, princeps siderum est in po: Joseph le Patriarche pour deviner, et celle testate nostra." Shahnameh, as quoted de Nestor dans Homère, où toute la na- in Wilkins's Persian Chrestomathia, ture étoit répresentée symboliquement, p. 171, and Creuzer's Dionysus, p. 62.
mysterious arts of chemistry, and the genuine philosopher's stone. A goblet of the Sun also forms a favourite object in Grecian fablela. On approaching the shores of the Western Ocean, this divinity was supposed to abandon his chariot, and, placing himself in a cup, to be borne through the centre of the earth. Having visited (according to Stesichorus) his mother, wife and children, he then proceeded to the opposite point of the hemisphere, where another car awaited his arrival, with which he resumed his diurnal course. The Theban Hercules, the original type of all erratic champions, once ventured to attack the son of Hyperion; but on being reproved for his temerity he withheld his hand, and received as a reward for his obedience the golden chalice of the god. This he now ascended; and during a furious storm, excited for the purpose of putting his courage to the test, he traversed the ocean in it till he reached the western island of Erythæa1 The Pla
120 In the article already referred to, ceptacles for the dead. The vase or urn Herbelot says, The Persian poets make of the former, the larnax of
gypt, the of this cup, "tantot le symbole de la na- ship or boat of Western Europe, and the ture et du monde, tantot celui du vin, canoe of the American savage, are all quelquefois celui de la divination et des connected with the same, primitive idea augures, et enfin de la chymie, et de la expressed in the Welsh apophthegm : pierre philosophale."
“Pawba ddaw i'r Ddavar Long-Every 121 See the fragments of this mythos, one will come into the ship of the earth. as variously related in Athenæus, lib. By whatever steps the Greek proceeded xi. p. 469-70. Mimnermus calls it the from his simple bowl or boat, to all the couch of the Sun, in allusion, as Athe- luxury of form displayed in his cinereal næus observes, to the concave form of urns, the larnax, ship, or coffin, of other the cup. This seems to have been a nations was by no means a needful accommon metonymy; for in the passage commodation to the doctrine, which already cited from Pausanias, the brazen forbade the incremation of the dead. ewer deposited by Aristomenes, is term The ashes of Balldur (Dæmesaga, c. 43.) ed a brazen bed by the old man who ap were deposited in the ship Hringhorne, peared to Epiteles in his dream. the body of Scyld (Beowulf, c. 1.) in a
12 From the Grecian terminology of bark laden with arms and raiment, and their drinking-vessels, it is clear that a committed to the guidance of the ocean. cup and a ship were originally correlative The varying language of the Iliad seems ideas; and the catalogue of Athenæus to countenance a similar distinction be(lib. xi.) recites several words indiscri- tween Greek and Phrygian rites. The minately implying either the one or the ashes of Patroclus are consigned to a other. The twofold import of these golden cup (is xguosmu préan, xxiii
. 253); terms will tend to explain an apparent those of Hector to a golden ark or cofdeviation on the part of the Greeks and fer (reuosimy is nágvaxe, xxiv. 795. ComRomans, from the general type adopted pare Thucydides ii. 34); for it is by no by other nations in the form of their re means clear, that the latter term ever
tonists have dwelt at large upon Hercules thus completing his labours in the West; and connecting this circumstance with the fancied position of the islands of the blest, have implied that it was here he overcame the vain illusions of a terrestrial life, and that henceforth he resided in the realms of truth and eternal light. With them, as in the school from whence their leading dogmas were derived—the mysteries of Paganism-a cup is the constant symbol of “ vivific power;" and this goblet of the Sun becomes the same type of regeneration and a return to a better life, with the Graal of romantic fiction. Another version of the contest between Hercules and the Sun, or Apollo, transfers the scene of action to Delphi, and makes the object of strife between these heaven-born kinsmen the celebrated tripod of the oracle. But in the symbolical language of Greece, a tripod and a goblet (crater) were synonymous terms: and the grammarians have informed us, that from this combat between the brothers, and their subsequent reconciliation, arose the prophetic powers of Hercules. It will however be remembered, that the translators of the Septuagint, in their version of the Hebrew text, have rendered the divining cup of Joseph by the Greek term “Condy.” Of this vessel Athenæus has preserved the following account from Nicomachus. The name of this cup is Persian. It originally meant the celestial lantern of Hermes, which in form resem
implied an urn, however much such an Greek was taught in the mysteries, that interpretation might be justified by ana- the Dionysic vase would be a passport logy. We are not, however, to infer, to the Elysian fields; and the religion that either of these utensils was the em. of Egypt enjoined, that every worshipper blem of death or annihilation, or that of Osiris should appear before his subthis application to funereal purposes was terranean judge in the same kind of rein any way at variance with the Platonic ceptacle as that which had inclosed the doctrine of the text. For as the cup or inortal frame of this divinity. It only vase was the symbol of vivific power, of remains to observe, that a boat of glass generation, or an earthly existence, so was the symbol of initiation into the also it was the type of regeneration, or a Druidical mysteries. Davies's Celtic continued life in a happier and more Mythology, p. 211. exalted state. The savage is buried in
νικητήριον εν Διονύσου, τρίτους his canoe, that he may be conveyed to δει δε νοεϊν τρίποδα του Διονύσου, τον the residence of departed souls; the xpatīga. Athenæus ii. 143.
123 Kai To
bled the world, and was at once the source of the divine marvels, and all the fruits that abound upon earth. On this account it is used in libations 124.” The reader of Plato will have no difficulty in connecting this mundane cup with the first crater, in which the Demiurgus of the universe mixed the materials of his future creation; in which the soul of the world was tempered to its due consistency, and from whence the souls that animate corporeal substances were dispersed among the stars 125. The mention of this primary bowl gave rise among the Platonists to a second or distributive cup of souls, which they bestowed upon Dionysus, as lord of the sensitive universe; and hence the Nymphs, as ministrants and followers of this divinity, as the authorized inspectors of generation, were said to be supplied with the same symbol. According to some authorities, these goblets are placed at opposite points of the firmament, and are respectively the types of generation, or the soul's descent into this realm of sensual pleasure, and of palingenesy, or the soul's return to those celestial regions from whence it sprang. The former stands between the signs of Cancer and Leo, immediately before the human portal; and a draught of the oblivious beverage it contains occasions forgetfulness of those pure delights in which the soul had previously lived, and excites a turbulent propensity towards a material and earthly existence 17. The latter is placed at one
14 Athenæus xi. 478. The present scattered notices of Proclus and Ploti. version is founded on the correction of nus on the subject. Compare also PorMr. Creuzer, who has at length render- phyry's interesting tract De Antro Nymed this passage intelligible by reading pharum, and Macrobius's Somnium Sci'Eguoữ 'rvos, where both Casaubon and pionis. Schweighauser have "Egustios. The lat 187 See Macrobius S. Scip. i. c. 12. ter critic has acknowledged the advan- The cauldron of Ceridwen, if foundtage of this emendation. See Dionysus, ed on a genuine record, appears to oc&c. p. 26 et seq. Nicomachus has used cupy the same place in Celtic mythothe term applied by Plato (Leg. i. 644.) logy. (See the Hanes Taliessin in Mr. to the whole animal creation, rõv Jeão Davies's Celtic Mythology.) Ceridwen, τα θαύματα. .
we are told, was "the goddess of vari125 Timæus, 41, 42.
ous seeds," from whose cauldron was 186 See Mr. Creuzer's Symbolik, &c. derived every thing sacred, pure and vol. iü. 410, &c. who has collected the primitive. Gwyon the Little sits watch