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had lately changed sides,) spoke long and ably in favour of it.
In what manner Cromwell and the army disposed of the Presbyterian majority, with all that followed, is well known to the readers of history.
XLVIII. THE DEATH OF CREDIT.
"At the south side of the higher court of mine inn, which is hard by the hall, (for there are two or three courts in that inne,) there is written this pretty French poesie: 'On ne loge ceans a credit: car il est mart, les mauvais payeurs I'ont tui' The English is this: Here is no lodging upon credit; for credit is dead, ill payers have killed him."—Cory at's Crudities.
A common inscription in front of the Neapolitan wine and maccaroni houses is, "Domani si fa credenza, ma oggi no,"—or, "To-morrow we give credit, but not to-day."
XLIX. BOTANICAL SATIRE.
Some of the systematic namos of plants are very pretty little lampoons. Thus Sauvages having given the name Buffonia, in honour of Buffon, Linnceus added the epithet tenuifolia, which suits the slender leaves of the plant, and the slender pretensions of Buffon to the character of a botanist.
Another plant he named Browallia, after Browal, a scholar of his; and as Browal was of humble fortune, he called one of its species Browallia depressa; but when Browal rose in the world, and forgot his old friends, Linnseus gave another species the name of Browallia data.
Thus too, the Petiveria aUiacea, while it commemorates the botanical zeal of Petiver, who, a century ago, was apothecary to the Charter-house, at the same time points out by its acridity the defect of his temper.
Sometimes again the name of the plant, though equally epigrammatic, is kinder than in the instances just mentioned. Thus Linnseus gave the name of Bauhinia to a plant which has its leaves in pairs, in honour of two brother-botanists, John and Gaspard Bauhins; and bestowed the name on Banisteria or a climbing-plant, in memory of M. Banister, who lost his life by falling from a rock while herborising.
In the name of Salix Babylonica, there is an elegant allusion to a well-known passage in the Psalms.
L. LATIN DISTICHS.
Many old writers have passed their lives in making combinations of words, which did more honour to their patience than to their wit. The combinations were generally formed of Latin words, and put into a barbarous distich. One of these solemn and indefatigable triflers calculated that the following verses might be changed in their order, and recombined, in thirty-nine million nine hundred and sixteen thousand eight hundred different ways; and that to complete the writing out of this series of combinations would occupy a man ninety-one years and forty-nine days, if he wrote at the rate of twelve hundred verses daily.
This is the wonderful distich:
Lex, grex, rex, spes, res, jus, thus, sal, sol bona lux, laus!
Mars, mors, sors, fraus, fcex, Styx, nox, crux, pus, mala vis, lis!
Which barbarism in poetry, may be thus translated:
"Law, flocks, king, hopes, riches, right, incense, salt, sun good torch, praise to you!
"Mars, death, destiny, fraud, impurity, Styx, night, the cross, bad humours, and evil power, may you be condemned."
The monks were great performers in this line; and the subjoined verse, in praise of the Virgin Mary, and which is calculated to admit of twelve hundred changes, without suffering in its sense, grammar, or quantity, probably proceeded from the dreamy solitude of a cell.
Tot tibi sunt dotes, virgo, quot sidera cceli.
Or, " Virgin, thy virtues are as numerous as the stars of the heavens."
LI. HOW TALL WAS ADAM?
This important question has been debated with as much earnestness as if the salvation of the world depended upon it, by many very learned men of different ages and countries, who, however they may have differed in their computation, all agreed in one thing, that the stature of our first father was prodigious.
In the foremost rank of these speculators we must place the Jewish Rabbins and the mystical writers of the Talmud: some of the latter assert that when Adam was first created, his head lay at one end of the world, while his toes touched the other end; but that his figure was much shortened after his transgression, at the request of the angels, who were afraid of such a giant. These Talmudists, however, left him the height of nine hundred cubits; * and others pretend that on being expelled from Paradise, he walked straight through the ocean, which, so enormous was the length of his limbs even after they had been shortened by sin, he found everywhere fordable. Other Rabbins reject as fabulous the account of Adam's stature equalling the length of the world; they fix it at one thousand cubits at his creation, and say that God deprived him of exactly one hundred cubits when he had eaten of the forbidden fruit. These extravagant notions prevailed among the Turks, Arabs, and many people, who certainly never read the old Jewish writers, but who all agree in attributing to Adam a most superhuman size. The stature of Eve, his wife, was of course proportionate; and in the neighbourhood of Mecca they show a hill which served as Eve's pillow, and afar off, in the plain, the spots where her legs rested, the distance from one of her knees to the other being computed at two musket-shots.
We should hardly have expected to see these dreams revived in France in the eighteenth century, and among a society of learned men; yet the fact is, that in the year 1718, Henrion presented to the Academy of Belles
* The Hebrews had several cubits, the most common of which was equal to about half an English yard.
Lettres a chronological scale of the human stature, wherein he soberly insisted that Adam was exactly one hundred and twenty-three feet nine inches high, and Eve, one hundred and eighteen feet, nine inches, and three-quarters; being precisely four feet, eleven inches, and a quarter, shorter than her husband.
According to Henrion's scale, the size of man rapidly diminished from his first fall, down to his redemption; and, but for the advent of our Saviour, the human form divine would, in the same process of diminution, have been reduced, long ere our time, to that of a miserable homunculus, not so high as my Uncle Toby's knee. The learned author says that Noah was twenty feet shorter than Adam; that Abraham was only twentyseven or twenty-eight feet high; but that as for Moses, (poor puny creature!) he measured no more than thirteen feet from the crown of his head to the soles of his feet. Henrion, like a true theorist, wedded heart and brain to his system, is by no means discouraged or put out when he gets among the facts of tolerably well authenticated history. In contempt of all authority, he says, Alexander the Great, who was remarked among his contemporaries as being rather a small man, was six feet high, but that Julius Csesar only measured five feet.
Under Augustus our Saviour was born, and then the stature of mankind ceased to dwindle, and began even to shoot up a little; but there Henrion's Echelle Chrondogique stops, he having proved to his entire satisfaction that in the course of three thousand years man had diminished and lost one hundred and eighteen feet nine inches of his stature.
VOL. I. T