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large. The First, we suppose, is a favorite with most readers of this poem. It is truly tender, pathetic, and sublime. hibits much of that peculiar melancholy in which Young delights, and the love of which has attracted and attached so many minds to his pages. Night II. may be characterized as a very useful piece, solemn, serious, rich in description, and full of sagacious counsels. Its tendency is to make us feel the uncertainty of life, the necessity of improving it to wise and good purposes, and the duty of preparing for an eternal scene. “Narcissa," the third book, though not without several tender and impressive sketches, is, on the whole, somewhat languid and prosaic. It is less rich than some others, in those striking passages, which have been stamped so indelible on the minds of readers. “ The Christian Triumph,Night IV. abounds in deep religious thought, as has already appeared in our remarks and quotations. Its representations of the atonement, divinity of Christ, faith, and similar doctrines of scripture, are evangelical and strongly drawn. Night V. “The Relapse" is adapted to give us a salutary dread of death, and earnestly points out to us the way and means of safety. It is painted too vividly not to be felt. In “ The Infidel Reclaimed," not so many brilliant passages, in proportion, are found as in the other pieces, and there are many quite prosaic lines. Yet the sentiments are ennobling, and much adroitness and strength of reasoning are exhibited, in the conduct of the argument. “Virtue's Apology” is a great effort. It contains fine moral painting, and a varied richness of religious truth. Its sentiments, with a few exceptions, are noble and correct. As a whole, it is calculated to leave a deep impression. In “The Consolation,” the last Night, we find at times much splendor of thought and diction. A fine pathos is often perceived, and unearthly hues of fancy are spread over several of its descriptions. But it is sometimes too declamatory, and leaves not as a whole, perhaps, so distinct an impression as several of the earlier books. Taking the Night Thoughts throughout, we are compelled to say, in accordance with the gen eral decision of readers, and of Time, that it is a wonderful prcduction of genius. It has excellences, which belong to no other poem in the language ; and it has imperfections, almost as extraordinary as its excellences.
In conclusion, we would venture to say, that there is room still for another extended work, in the department of religious poetry. Whether we are to look for any in the present state of the art, or whether a work of the kind intended, would be received in this matter-of-fact age, is another concern.
not, however, admit the thought, that poetry, especially the poetry of Christianity, is to lose its attractions with the great mass of readers, in present or future times; and that the intellect of the world is to be shorn of so noble a means of its elevation and refinement, and so rich a source of its purity and pleasure. We rather suppose, that as peace prevails; and improvements are made in social intercourse ; and above all, as the gospel acquires influence over the human mind; so the domain of poetry, of pure and heavenly poetry, will be enlarged—that its healthful pulsations will be felt in ever-widening circles.
Our fancy has dwelt on such a refreshment of the heart, as destined hereafter to cull its sweets from a renovated earth-to reflect its brightness from purer skies and to find its last and favorite abode, in the bosoms of an universally sanctified race. A work or mass of poetry might now be produced, which should occupy the region of benevolence. It should deal in the forms and principles, and motives of christian action,—depicting their beauty and unfolding their use. It would thus be adapted to the wants and spirit of the age, and become the precursor of the millennium. Milton has told the story of revelation, and given the theory of religion, in his two immortal works. Young has urged the argument of the truth of the gospel, in establishing the doctrine of human immortality, as he has also developed some of the spiritual influences of the gospel. Cowper has depicted evangelical principles in connection with nature and human life, in their ordinary state,-giving them, however, a practical shape. Others have unfolded views designed, in different degrees, to be applied to the common spiritual interests and conduct of men.
But it would be desirable now, that the principles and spirit of the bible, should be depicted with more especial reference to action-benevolent action. Bringing aid to the prosecution of every godlike enterprise ; such an attempt would be a preparation, for that better age of the world which is to come, if not an element of its life, and an emblem of its perfection.
ART. V.-SESOSTRIS, THE HORNET OF Exod. 23 : 28, Deut.
7:20, Josh. 24: 12. We are fully sensible of the importance of weighing carefully the reasons for a proposed emendation or new translation of an ancient historian, especially if the history be the bible; but we are no less sensible of the important service which often has been, and yet may be rendered to biblical criticism, by an application of cotemporaneous history to explain what appears dark in the Hebrew narrative. Believing that the following considerations render it exceedingly probable, if they do not prove, that the 1797x tsirah, of Moses and Joshua, was none other than the Sesostris of the Egyptian historians, we have concluded to lay them before our readers, for the consideration of those whose principal business is to inquire into these matters, in the mean time assuring our readers, that we see no valid objection against the conclusion we have drawn.
I. The part performed by the tsirah, was the appropriate work of a conqueror. Thus Moses, soon after the Exodus, promises the doubting and cowardly Israelites, that God would send tsirah before them, and drive out the Hivite, the Canaanite, and Hittite, froin before them ;* and when he rehearses the promises of the Lord, this is reckoned among them. And after the children of Israel were firmly seated in their new possessions, Joshua, in recounting what the Lord had done for them, says: “God sent tsirah before you, and drave them, the two kings of the Amorites, out from before you ; not with thy sword, nor with thy bow."I The part performed by tsirah, as described in these passages, is eminently descriptive of the work of a conquering warrior, but it requires much imagination to liken it to the work of hornets. Besides, if Joshua had intended to say, that the two kings of the Amorites were driven out by hornets, it is not easy to see why he should add something so entirely foreign as to say, “not with thy sword, nor with thy bow.” But if, on the other hand, by tsirah, was intended a conqueror, then he might with great propriety add, “not with thy sword, nor with thy bow," the antithesis implying, but with the sword and bow of the conquering hero God hath sent before thee.
II. The word 797x isirah, does not signify a hornet, as it is rendered in our English version. There is no root in the He
Josh. 24 : 12
* Ex. 23: 28. Vol. X.
| Deut. 7:20.
brew from which this word could be made ; but the Arabic root, yox tsara, from which it comes, signifies to smite, to strike down, to prostrate; whence nynx tsara’hat, the smitten, denotes the leprosy,* because the eastern nations supposed this disorder was a punishment inflicted upon men for gross crime or offense.t From this root the Arabic has tsaraw, “a scourge," I answering to tsirah of the Hebrew, which Gesenius renders evils, calamities, misfortunes. Literally, tsirah denotes something that smites, strikes down, or lays prostrate, and hence, if spoken of a man, would be rendered a smiter,- an epithet peculiarly descriptive of the character of a conqueror. But as ng eth, is prefixed to tsirah in these places, a definite idea must be conveyed by the noun, $ and hence, if applied to an individual, must denote The smiter, that is, some one who in his life-time was known and celebrated as a conqueror, and who might with propriety be called the conqueror. The Lxx in these places render tsirah by qyxla, a wasp's nest, and figuratively, a troop of wasps, and the Vulgate has crabro, a large wasp, or hornet. The English translation follows, therefore, neither the Hebrew nor the Greek, but the Latin, in rendering tsirah, hornets. Now as the three texts above quoted are the only places in the Hebrew scriptures where tsirah occurs, and as there is no authority for rendering it hornet in these places, there can be no doubt, that the English version is unauthorized.
III. History furnishes us with an account of a king who marched through this country precisely at this time, and performed identically the same things attributed to “the hornet." The successor of Menophes, the last king of the eighteenth dynasty of Egyptian kings, who was drowned in the Red Sea at the time of the Exodus of the children of Israel, was Sethos Penus, or, as Josephus writes the name, Eetwois Sethosis. The Egyptian historian Manetho, describes him as a powerful and successful warrior, “who marched against Cyprus and Phenicia, and so forward to the Assyrians and Medes; that he subdued them all, some by force of arms, and others by the terror of his name; that being elated with his success, he advanced still more confidently, and overthrew the cities, till he conquered all the countries of the east.”ll On this route he must have passed through Canaan; and if, therefore, the account of the Egyptian be true, that he conquered all this country, it follows necessa
* Ex. 4:6; Lev. 13:47—59; 14: 34–37; Num. 12: 10. + Comp. author. cited by Park. under 7X I.
Ges. Heb. Lex. in loco. s Stuart's Heb. Gram. sec. 427, n. 1. p. 160, 4th ed. || Jos. Adv. App. L. 1.
rily, that while Moses and the children of Israel were sojourning in the wilderness, the conquering hero of Egypt was smiting the kings of the Canaanites, and would, in such a campaign, in all probability, drive out, that is, destroy, some of them. Traces of such an incursion are also found in the Mosaic account of those times. Thus we find mention of a “former king of Moab,* and Og is described as the remnant of the giants,"'t both of which sufficiently indicate, that there had been a recent political revolution in that country; and this, coupled with the express declaration, that God had sent such a hero as is above described, and drove out the kings of the Canaanites from before them, must be, we think, a sufficient recognition to satisfy all the scruples of the most fastidious, and to silence all the objections of the doubting, arising from a supposed omission of the Hebrew historian, to make any mention of so mighty a warrior and conqueror as Sethos must have been.
IV. This king was the Sesostris of the Greek historians. Much of the difficulty in relation to the age of this king has been occasioned by a misunderstanding of the Egyptian chronology, but as we have before shown, that the Egyptians have no history before the time of the 16th dynasty, B. C. 2339, and there is no pretence, that he belonged either to the 16th, 17th or 18th dynasties, he must belong to the 19th, 20th or 21st dynasty. But this last would bring him down much below the time where all ancient historians place him, and therefore cannot be relied upon. Besides, whoever compares the account given of Sesostris, by Herodotus, of Sesoosis, by Diodorus Siculus,|| and of Sethos or Sethosis by Manetho,** can have no reasonable doubt, that the two former, are but magnified accounts of the latter. So also the orthography of the names by which this king has been called, when compared with each other, and with the Coptic, as restored by Sir W. Drummond, tt points to an original identity.
Euseb. Se-thos — Now the two first syllables of Sesostris, are merely titular, 11 and we might, therefore almost infer the identity of the Coptic
* Num. 21.26. + Deut. 3:11.
Chr. Spect., June, 1837. Art. Egypt. Chronology. § L. 2. cc. 102–111. 9 L. 1. c. 4. ** Jos. Adv. App. L. 1. tt Sir W. Drummond, Orig. 1 Idem.