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sufficiently proved elsewhere, that the art of grafting was then absolutely unknown m. To the proofs which I have given, we may add the reflection which Hesiod made with respect to olive-trees. This author, according to Pliny", said that no man had ever seen the fruit of the olive-tree which he had planted; a sign that in his time the Greeks yet understood very little of the culture of fruit-trees.
I shall observe further on the subject of fig-trees, that the tree to which they gave that name in Greece, was not of the same species with that which grows in our climates. That sort of fig-tree is much more fertile than ours o, buç its fruits cannot come to maturity before they have been pricked by insects, which ingender in the fruit" a certain fort of wild fig, called by the ancients Caprificus. Thus tilẽy took great care to plant on the sides of their domestic fig, treesp, This custoin is continued even at this time in the ifles of the Archipelago 4. We must observe further, that these sort of figs are far from being comparable to ours, for goodness and delicacy",
I think I can add to this article some other practices whicl: have a great relation to agriculture, taken from the general idea of the productions and labours of the country.
The most common and the most ordinary arts are not certainly the least useful. Strabo, speaking of the ancient inhabitants of Great Britain, observes that these people who had many herds, did not know the art of curdling the milk, and making it into cheese. He gives, with great reason, thiş fact as a mark of the grossness and ignorance of that națion', The Greeks, in the ages we are at present speaking of, were not so destilute of knowledge. They were instructed in the art of making cheeses. Homer speaks often of them The Greeks pretend to have been indebted for
* See fupra, chap. 1. p. 86. & 87. L. 15. fest. 2. p. 732. • Tournefort, voyage du Levant, t. 1.p.395.
p Arift. hist. animal. 1. 5. c. 32. p. 857.; Theophraft. de caur. plant. I. 2.Co 12. P. 246.; Plin. l. 15. sect. 21. p. 747.; Athen. l. 3. C. 4. p. 76. 77.
9 Tournefort, loco cit. p. 338. &c.
IL.4. p. 305.
that knowledge to Aristeus King of Arcadia v. He had, say they, moreover taught them the art of raising bees, and making use of their honey, I should doubt much of this last fact. It appears that in the heroic times they did not know in Greece the use of hiyes. We may conjecture this from a passage in which Homer compares the army of the Greeks to a swarm of bees. He does not make them come out of a hive, but out of the cliffs of a rocky, which
may get be seen
CH A P.
HE manner in which the first inhabitants of Greece
were clothed, answered to the grossness of their manners. The skins of beasts which they killed in the chase ferved them for covering ; but not knowing the art of preparing these skins, they wore them quite rough, and with the hair on. The only ornament which they could imagine, was to wear the fur without e. The finews of animals served them for thread. Thorns withour doubt held the place of needles and bodkins. There remain yet in the writings of Hesiod traces of these ancient customs b.
We are ignorant in what time the Greeks learned the art of giving to skins convenient preparations, as to tan them, to curry them, &c. Pliny makes one Tychius, a native of - Boeotia -, author of this invention, without marking in what age this artist lived. Homer speaks of a workman of this name greatly celebrated, in the heroic times, for his skill in preparing and dressing tkins. Among other works he had, says he, made the shield of Ajax c. Yet there is no appearance that this should be the same person to whom Pliny has attributed the invention of currying skins. This art must have been known in Greece long before the war of Troy; but it is not possible to determine precisely the epoch.
Juftin. I. 13. C. 7. Ariftens had married Autonoe, daughter of Cadmus. Hefiod. Theog. v. 977. ; Diod. 1. 4. p. 324.
* Diod. Justin. locis cit.
y Iliad. I. 2. v. 87. dc. We find indeed in Hefiod, Theog. V. 594. & 598. these words opeñuos and oisellos, used afterwards to mean the hives where the bees make their honey. But independently of these two words not being found in Homer, and that we have many reasons to think Hefiod posterior to this poet, I would not even conclude from the words of Heliod, that the Greeks knew in his time the art of gathering the bees into hives. If this practice had been known in the ages in which Hefiod wrote, he would probably have given some precepts, as Virgil has done in his Georgics. , ? Diod). 1. 2. p.151.; Paul. 1.8. c. 1. p. 599.
a Pauf. I. 10. c. 38. p. 895. See Hetiod, opera, V, 544.
c... 7. sect. 57. p. 414.
It is not the same with respect to weaving: "I think we may very well refer this establishment in Greece to the time of Cecrops. This prince came from Egypt, where the art of *spinning wool, and the art of making stuffs, was known very anciently. He made known this invention to the inhabitants of Attica. The few memoirs which now remain to us of the origin of weaving in Greece, agree very well with this conjecture. The Athenians were looked upon in antiquity as the first who had known the art of making stuffs of wool and flax. They are said even to have communicated these difcoveries to all Greece a. We likewise know that Athens in all times lias been renowned for the fill of its inhabi. tants in weaving. The quality of the soil of Attica contributed much to the rapid progress which this art made among these people. The wool of that country was reckoned, in the judgment of the ancients, the best that was known . i
It is very important for the quality of the wool to keep the sheep in very great neatness. We could not carry, our attention farther, in this respect, than certain people of Greece carried it. To procure the finest and best-condi- . tioned wool, their precaution went so far as to cover the skins of their sheep f, left the injuries of the air should al. ter the fleece, and left they should contract any dirt.
We see by the manner in which the Greeks anciently stript their sheep of their wool, how imperfect the mechanic arts were among those people in the early times. There is a certain time of the year when the wool of the sheep
c Iliad. 1. 7. V. 220. &C. Juftin. I. 2. c.,6.
e See Vossius de idol. 1. 3. C. 70. Ælian, var. hift. 1. 12. C. 56.; Diog. Laert. 1.6. segm. 41. p. 335.
comes off of itself. The Greeks took advantage of that time to procure the wool of these animals, and tore it offs. It was because they wanted sheers at that time, or other instruments proper for that operation. This custom did not subsist in the time of Hesiod, they knew then to thear their fheep .
I have said, in the first part of this work, that anciently the mechanics were disposed in such a manner that they could only work standing. This custom subsisted still in Greece to the heroic times, Homer not permitting us to doubt of it k. Moreover, the stuffs which they then made, were very badly prepared. They had not yet found the art of fulling them. That art was not known in Greece till some time after the ages which we are at present speak. ing of. They give the honour of it one Nicias of Megara.
A very curious question presents itself to us on this subject, the examination of which deserves fome attention. Homer gives us to understand, that at the time of the war
& Varro, de re rust. 1. 2. c. 11.; Plin. I. 8. fect. 73. p. 474. ; Ifidor. orig. 1.19. C. 27., Op. & Dies, v. 775.
i B. 2. chap. 2. * Iliad. 1. 1. v. 31. See Jun. de pict. veter. I. 1. C.4. p. It may be objected what Homer says of the Phaeacians, Odyff. 1.7. V. 105. & 106.
Αι δ' ίσες εφόωσι και η λάκατα τρωφώσιν "Husvesi, and from thence conclude, that, in the heroic times, the women had already guitted the troublesome custom of working standing. But there is the greatest reason to think, that the word “pesvou ought only to refer to those that spun, and not to those that worked at any trade. This is the more certain, as Eustathius, to whom this paffage was not unknown, says positively, in commenting on the 31st verse of the ift book the Iliad, that, in the times of Homer, the women did not yet work fitting.
| Plin. 1.7. fcet. 57. p.414, Pliny, by saying that this Nicias was of Megara, gives us to understand, that the art of tulling stuffs was not known till after the ages of which we now speak. Megara, in reality, according to Strabo, had not been built till after the return of the Heraclidae, 1.9. p. 965.
It is true, that we find in Pausanias, 1.1. c. 39. that Megara was built before the Heraclidae; and that they only repaired it. But the teftimony of Pausanias ought not to overbalance that of Strabo, whose exactness is acknowledged by the whole world. This is also the sentiment of Velleius Paterculus, 1. s. n. 2. p. 4.
of Troy, they used oil in the preparation of their stuffs m.'
But what was the end of this practice? In what could it hat is consist? Was it to gloss the stuffs, to give them more fine
ness, or to make them impenetrable to rain or bad weather? This is very difficult to determine in a clear and precise manner : the poet has not entered into any detail or any explication of these different objects. We learn by
the modern travellers, that, in China and the East Indies, i diran fit is ftill a practice to use oil for the preparation of many
stuffs. What they have said of them will, I believe, give some light on the question we are about.
When the Chinese go a journcy, they have a custom of taking with them a sort of habits, of which the stuff is of a thick taffely done over with many layers of thick oil. This oil has the same effect on these stuffs that wax has on our cloths. They render them impenetrable to the rain The Chinese have another way of using oil. They use it to give to their fatins a very lively and very shining lustrea, This last process comes near enough to that which they follow in the East Indies for the making of these beautiful cotton stuffs which come to us from those countries. The last preparation which they give to the thread of which they are made, is to rub them with oil P.
Perhaps also the Greeks used oil, and the heat of the fire to draw the worsted, and spin their woul more finely and more easily. The stuffs made of these threads dipt in oil, were afterwards fcoured by the means of falts and other preparations which they used in fulling it. We may chuse, among these different practices, those which we shall think most agreeable to the text of Homer ; for there is room to conjecture, that he meant some preparation nearly like those which I have shewn. What is more certain, is, that these passages of Homer are almost unintelligible.
m Viad. I. 18. v. 595. & 596.; Odyf. 1. 7. V. 107.
Lettr. edif. t. 15. 7.403, and 401,