ISRAEL, continued to reside in Egypt, where they in. for their inheritance in Gilead and Bashan, on the creased both in number and in wealth. Their rapid Arabian side of the Jordan. increase and prosperity soon excited the jealousy of Moses dying before the inheritance was entered upon, the masters of the country; and from being in high was succeeded by Joshua as a leader, and by him the favour, the different tribes gradually fell under the Israelites were conducted across the Jordan. The polilash of power, and came to be treated as public slaves. tical government of the various tribes, after their con

The entire body of Israelites, guided by Moses, fled quest and settlement of Canaan, appears to have been from Egypt in the year 1490 before Christ, at a time republican, with military leaders called Judges; but when Thebes, Memphis, and the other magnificent these acted by the direction of the priesthood, who cities of that country, were in all their glory. Pro- were immediately counselled by the Deity within the ceeding in a north-easterly direction from Rameses sanctuary. This period of separate governient in (near the site of modern Cairo), they went through the tribes, called the Period of the Judges, lasted 300 level region of the land of Goshen (now a barren sandy years (B.c. 1427-1112), and was one of daring actions plain) to the head of the Gulf of Suez, the western and great deliverances—the heroic age of the Jews. branch of the Red Sea. Here they crossed in a mira- The epoch of kings succeeded that of judges. The culous manner to the opposite shore, to a spot now reign of Saul, their first monarch, though the people called the Wells of Moses, where, according to the were stronger by being united, was gloomy and troubled. Scripture narrative, they sang their song of thanks- David, who succeeded, was a soldier and a conqueror. giving for their deliverance. The country in which He rendered the Hebrews formidable to the whole of they had now arrived was a portion of Arabia Petræa, their enemies, and gave them a regular and defensible consisting of a dismal barren wilderness, now called position, expelling their old antagonists from every part the Desert of Sinai, from the principal mountain which of the country. He left an empire peaceful, respected, rises within it. From the point at which the Israelites and strong; and, what was of as much importance, he had crossed the Red Sea from Egypt, they were con- selected from among his sons a successor who was ducted by a most circuitous and tedious route towards able to improve all these advantages, and to add to the the Promised Land of Canaan. Their tiresome journey progress which his countrymen had already made in extended over a period of forty years, and was not prosperity. Under Solomon, the name of the Hebrew completed till all the Hebrews who were above twenty government being able to protect its subjects in other years of age when they left the land of Egypt (except countries, the people and their king began to employ ing Caleb and Joshua) had died, and a new genera- themselves in commerce. Their trade was at first ention, possessing greater courage and confidence in the grafted on that of the Phænicians of Tyre. A greater Almighty, had succeeded them. In the trackless wilder- contrast cannot be imagined than between the troubles ness through which they were led, their multitudes, as of the time of the Judges (only 100 years before), we learn from Scripture, could neither have traced and the peace, security, and enjoyment of this reign. their way nor procured subsistence without a con- * And the king made silver to be in Jerusalem as tinued miracle. The hand of God brought for them stones, and cedars made he to be as sycamore trees streams of water out of the flinty rock; rained manna that are in the vale for abundance; and Judah and or bread from heaven ; and gave a pillar of cloud to Israel were many; as the sand which is by the seadirect their journeys through the day, and a pillar of shore for multitude, eating, and drinking, and inakiug fire by night. He delivered the tables of a moral law, merry.” (1 Kings, x. 27.) comprehending the ten commandments, to Moses their After the death of Solomon, the country fell into the leader ; and promulgated a set of regulations for the same divisions which had weakened it in the time of ceremonies of worship, the establishment of a separate the Judges. Each of the districts of North and South order devoted to religion and learning, and for the Israel was under a separate king, and the people were civil governinent of the nation. The Hebrews had exposed both to the attacks of their enemies and to thus a regular polity and written laws when most other quarrels with each other. Their history is a succession nations knew only the law of the sword, or of savage of agitating conflicts for independence, and of unex. animal superiority.

pected and remarkable deliver es, of a siinilar nature The country on the shore of the Mediterranean to those of the earlier period, and they continued for which was allotted as a settlement to this people, was about the same length of time (380 years); but they at that time occupied by many warlike tribes, who had are marked by fewer of those traits of heroic devotion grown strong in its fertile plains and valleys; and the which distinguished the epoch of the Judges. The generation of the Ilebrews who were conducted into it backslidings, errors, and misgovernment of their kings, were compelled to fight for its possession. The struggle is the chief and painful subject which is presented to was not of long continuance. The whole land was con- us; and though these are relieved at times by the ap, quered in the year 1.c. 1450.

pearance of such monarchs as Josiah, Jehoshaphat, and According to the account given in the 26th chapter Hezekiah, yet the whole history of this period is overof the book of Numbers, the llebrew nation thus brought cast with the gloominess of progressive decline. By far out of the land of Egypt and settled in Canaan amounted the most delightful parts of it are those which relate to to 601,730 souls, unto whom the land was divided for the lives of the prophets, who were raised up at interan inheritance, according to the number of individuals vals to warn the nation and its rulers of the fate which in the respective tribes. The tribes, and their fighting they incurred by forsaking the religion of their fathers. men above twenty years of age, were reckoned as fol. These inspired men sometimes sprang up from among low:--Tribe of Reuben (the eldest son of Jacob) 43,730; the humblest classes of the community: one from the Simeon 22,200 ; Gad 40,500 ; Judah 76,500 ; Issachar herdsmen of Tekoa,' another from ploughing with 64,300 ; Zebulun 60,500 ; Manasseh 52,700 ; Ephraim twelve yoke of oxen;' several were of the priestly order, 32,500 (the tribes of Manasseh and Ephraim were both and one (Isaiah) is said to have been of royal lineage; from Joseph); Benjamin 45,600; Dan 64,400; Asher but the works of all are marked with the same sacred53,400; and Naphtali 45,400. Among these twelve ness, force, and authority. They reprehend their countribes the land was divided. The tribe of Levi (to trymen, in the most eloquent strains, at one time for which belonged Moses, Aaron, and Eleazar the high idolatry, and at another for hypocrisy; and their inpriest), amounting to 23,000 males from a month old dignation is expressed with the same freedom and dig. and upwards, received no share of the land : being set nity against the vices of the highest and the lowest. apart for the priesthood, the tenth or tithe of the general Of the two kingdoms into which Palestine had diproduce was assigned them as their perpetual inherit- vided itself after the death of Solomon (B. c. 975), the ance. By making a special agreement with the other northern, called the Kingdom of Israel, was conquered tribes that they should assist them against the common by the Assyrians of Nineveh (B. C. 72.2), who carried off enemy, the two tribes of Gad and Reuben, and the half many thousands of the people into captivity. Little is tribe of Manasseh, were permitted to appropriate land known of their fate. By some they are supposed to hare been carried to India, by others to Tartary: what | far and wide, from Egypt to the border of India. This became of all the Israelites of the ten tribes,' is still a empire, known in the common chronologies by the question with historians. The southern kingdom, called name of The Assyrian Empire,' lasted, according to the Kingdom of Judah, retained its independence till the usual accounts, five or six centuries, during which B. C. 588, when it was invaded and subdued by Ne- it was governed, in the absolute Oriental manner, by buchadnezzar, king of Babylon, who destroyed Jerusa- the successors of Ninus and Semiramis. Of these lem, and carried away a great number of the principal several are mentioned in Scripture-Phul, the contenJews into captivity at Babylon. On the subversion of porary of Menahem, king of Israel (B.c. 761), and the Babylonian dominion by Cyrus, seventy years after- Tiglath Pileser (B.c. 730), both of whom were mixed wards, the captives, to the number of 42,360, were up with the affairs of Israel and Judah; Salmanassar, permitted to return to their own land, and rebuild contemporary with Hezekiah, king of Judah, and Jerusalem. At this period, the whole of Palestine Hosea, king of Israel, by whom it was that Samaria merged in the growing Persian empire.

was taken (B. c. 722), and the Israelites led into capti.

vity (B.C. 722); and Sennacherib, or Sanherib (B.c. 714), The Assyrians and Babylonians.

who attacked Egypt, and whose fruitless invasion of That large extent of level country situated between Judah forms the subject of the striking narrative in and on the banks of the two great rivers, the Euphrates the 18th and 19th chapters of the second book of Kings. and the Tigris, was, in the earliest antiquity, the seat The last of the great line of the Assyrian kings of of a Semitic population living under an organised Nineveh was the luxurious Sardanapalus, in whose gorernment. The origin of the Assyrian state is thus reign the empire was dissolved, through the instrurelated in Scripture (Genesis, x.)— And Cush (the son mentality of its revolted subjects the Medes (B.C. 626). of Ham, the son of Noah) begat Nimrod: he began to After Nineveh, the greatest city in the Assyrian be a mighty one in the earth. He was a mighty hunter dominion was Babylon. Even while under the domi. before the Lord: wherefore it is said, Even as Nimrod nion of the kings of Nineveh, Babylon appears to have the mighty hunter before the Lord. And the be- possessed a special organisation under its own chiefs, ginning of his kingdom was Babel, and Erech, and several of whose names—such as Belesis (B.C. 888), Accad, and Calneh, in the land of Shinar. Out of and Nabonassar (B.C. 747)—have been preserved; and, that land went forth Asshur (translated in the margin, together with the whole province of which it was the “Out of that land he— Nimrod-went forth into Assy- capital, to have pursued a special career. The peculiar ria”), and builded Nineveh, and the city Rehoboth, element in the Babylonian society which distinguished and Calah, and Resen between Nineveh and Calah: it from that of Assyria proper, was its Chaldæan the same is a great city. There are two interpreta- priesthood. “The Chaldæan order of priests,” says Mr tions of this passage, according as the text or the Grote, “appear to have been peculiar to Babylon and marginal reading is adopted. The one is, that a other towns in its territory, especially between that mighty

, conqueror of the race of Hain (primitive city and the Persian Gulf; the vast, rich, and lofty Ethiopic influence ?) made an irruption into Mesopo- temple of Belus in that city served them at once as a tamia, which belonged to the children of Shem, and place of worship and an astronomical observatory; and built there Babylon on the Euphrates, and other cities; it was the paramount ascendancy of this order which becoming, as the Eastern authors say, the first king in seems to have caused the Babylonian people generally the world, and the first man who wore a crown; and to be spoken of as Chaldæans, though some writers that, driven out of their possessions by this conqueror, have supposed, without any good proof, a conquest of a part of the children of Shem proceeded farther east, Assyrian Babylon by barbarians called Chaldæans from and built Nineveh on the Tigris. The other is, that the mountains near the Euxine. There were exaggeNimrod himself, going from Babylon, built Nineveh. rated statements respecting the antiquity of their astroIn either sense, the passage represents distinctly the nomical observations, which cannot be traced, as of early condition of this part of the world-an extensive definite and recorded date, higher than the era of plain fertilised by the two rivers, the Tigris and the Nabonassar (B.c. 747), as well as respecting the exEuphrates; and with great cities scattered over it, tent of their acquired knowledge, so largely blended gathering the population together at points, if we may with astrological fancies and occult influences of the so speak, into large solid masses. of these cities, the heavenly bodies on human affairs. But however incommost important ultimately were Babylon, built, ac. plete their knowledge may appear when judged by the cording to the above account, by Nimrod, B.c. 2217; standard of after-times, there can be no doubt that, and Nineveh (called Ninos by the Greeks), built, ac- compared with any of their contemporaries of the sixth cording to the same authority, either by Asshur or century B.C.-either Egyptians, Greeks, or Asiatics Nimrod about the same time, but afterwards rebuilt they stood pre-eminent, and had much to teach, not and enlarged, according to ancient tradition, by a only to Thales and Pythagoras, but even to later ingreat king, Ninus, B.c. 1230, down to which period it quirers, such as Eudoxus and Aristotle. The concephad been inferior in size to the Resen mentioned in the tion of the revolving celestial sphere, the gnomon, and Scriptural text. With these two cities as capitals, the the division of the day into twelve parts, are affirmed country divided itself into two corresponding parts or by Herodotus to have been first taught to the Greeks kingdoms—the kingdom of Assyria proper, including, by the Babylonians.' This learned Chaldæan class besides part of Mesopotamia, the country to the right seems to have pervaded the general mass of Babylonian of the Tigris as far as Mount Zagros; and the kingdom society, as the corresponding priest-caste in Egypt perof Babylonia, including the western part of Mesopo- vaded Egyptian society, with this difference, that Babytamia, together with the country to the left of the lonian society does not appear to have been parcelled Euphrates as far as Syria proper. The two kingdoms, out like the Egyptian into a rigorous system of castes. however, are often included under the joint name of On the dissolution of the Assyrian empire of Nineveh Assyria ; a word which, as well as the shorter form by the Medes (B.C. 626), the Chaldæan fragment of it Syria, was often employed by the ancient Greek writers rose to eminence on its ruins, chiefly by the efforts of to desiguate the whole region lying along the courses Nabopolassar, a viceroy of the last Assyrian king. of the two great rivers from the Black Sea to the Establishing. Babylonia as an independent power in northern angle of the Persian Gulf.

the east, Nabopolassar came into collision with Nekos, Although Babylon was, according to Scripture, the king of Egypt, who was at that time extending his earlier of the two powers, yet the Assyrians of Ni. empire into Asia. It was in opposing Nekos (Pharaoh. neveh attained such strength under their hero Ninus, Necho) on his march to Babylon that Josiah, king of as to reduce the Babylonians to a species of dependence. Under Ninus, and his wife and successor the * When Alexander the Great was in Babylon, the Chaldæang great conqueress Semiramis, says ancient mythical told him their order had begun their astronomical observations history, the city of the Tigris extended its doininions 400,000 years before he was born.

Judah, was slain. At length (B.C. 608) Nebuchad.

The Medes and Persians. nezzar, or Nebuchodonosor, the son of Nabopolassar, Extending, as we have said, from the Mediterranean defeated Nekos, and annexed all his conquests in to the Indus, the Assyrian empire had included not Asia to his father's kingdom. Two years afterwards only the chief Semitic nations of western Asia, but also the same prince took Jerusalem, and carried away a that portion of the Indo-Germanic family which was number of captives to Babylon, among whom were contained between Mount Zagros and the river Indus, Daniel and his companions. Succeeding his father, Essentially a prolongation of the great race which in. B.C. 605, Nebuchadnezzar reigned over Babylon forty- habited Hindoostan, the nature of their country-a vast three years (B.C. 605-561); and during his reign ex- table-land, here and there rising into hills, or presenttended the empire to the Mediterranean and the bor- ing spots of great fertility-had made them quite diffe. ders of Egypt, adding to it Palestine, Phænicia, &c. rent in character and habits from the settled and With his countenance the Medes and Lydians destroyed stereotyped lindoos. All parts of this plateau of Iran, Nineveh (B.C. 601). The great abduction of Jewish as it was called, including the present countries of captives by his orders took place B.C. 588. Ile was Persia, Cabool, and Beloochistan, were not alike; in succeeded (B.c. 561) by his son, Evil- Merodach, who some portions, where the soil was fertile, there existed was dethroned (B.c. 559) by his brother-in-law Nerig- a dense agricultural population; in others, the inhabi. lissar, whose son and successor, Laboroso-archod, was tants were nomadic horse-breeders, cattle-rearers, and dethroned, after a brief reign, by Nabonnedus, the shepherds. All the tribes, however, were bound toBelshazzar of Scripture (B.C. 555); in the eighteenth gether by the ties of a common Indo-Persic language, year of whose reigu (B.C. 538) Babylon was taken by quite distinct from that spoken by their Semitic neigh. Cyrus, and passed into the hands of the Persians. bours and masters, and by a common religion. This

It was during the reign of Nebuchadnezzar that the religion, called the Religion of Zend, a modification city of Babylon attained that glory which has rendered probably of some more ancient form, from which Hin. it á known word to all who are at all acquainted with dooism may also have sprung, was taught by Zerdusht history. Herodotus, who saw the city in its decline, or Zoroaster, a great native reformer and spiritual gives a description of it which has seemed incredible teacher, who lived six or seven centuries before Christ. to many, although now fully verified. “The city, The principal doctrine of his religion was that of the divided in the middle by the Euphrates, was surrounded existence of two great emanations from the Supreme with walls in thickness 75 feet, in height 300 feet, and perfect Deity-the one a good spirit (Ormuzd), and in compass 480 stadia, or about 60 of our miles.' who created man, and fitted him for happiness; the Within this circuit there was included, besides the other an evil spirit, named Ahriman, who has marred houses, a space of vacant ground, gardens, pasture, &c. the beauty of creation by introducing evil into it. sufficient to accommodate the country population in Between these two spirits and their adherents there is case of invasion: the height and strength of the walls an incessant struggle for the mastery; but ultimately rendered the city itself to all appearance impregnable. Ormuzd will conquer, and Ahriman and evil will be • These walls formed an exact square, each side of banished from the bosom of creation into eternal dark. which was 120 stadia, or 15 miles in length; and were ness. The worship annexed to this doctrine was very built of large bricks cemented together with bitumen, simple, dispensing with temples or images, and cona glutinous slime which issues out of the earth in that sisting merely of certain solemn rites performed on country, and in a short time becomes harder than the mountain tops, &c. Fire, and light, and the sun, were very brick or stone which it cements. The city was worshipped either as symbols or as inferior deities. A encompassed without the walls by a vast ditch filled caste of priests, called the Magi, answering in some with water, and lined with bricks on both sides; and respects to the Brahmins of India or the Chaldæans of as the earth that was dug out of it served to make the Babylon, superintended these cerenionies, and com. bricks, we may judge of the depth and largeness of mented on the religion of Zoroaster. the ditch from the height and thickness of the walls. Various of the tribes of Iran, associating themselves In the whole compass of the walls there were a hun- together, constituted little nations. Thus adjacent to dred gates—that is, twenty-five on each side, all made Assyria, and separated from it by Mount Zagros, was of solid brass. At intervals round the walls were 250 an agglomeration of seven tribes or villages, under the towers. From each of the twenty-five gates there was special name of the Medes, the country which they in. a straight street extending to the corresponding gate habited being thence called Media. South from Media, in the opposite wall; the whole number of streets was and nearer the sea, was another district of Iran, called therefore fifty, crossing each other at right angles, and Persis or Persia, inhabited also by an association of each fifteen miles long. The breadth of the streets tribes calling themselves the Persians. Other nations was about 150 feet. By their intersection the city was of Iran were the Parthians, the Bactrians, &c.—all divided into 676 squares, each about two miles and a- originally subject to the Assyrian empire. quarter in compass, round which were the houses, three Median history begins with a hero king called or four storeys in height; the vacant spaces within Deiokes (B. c. 710-657), who effected some important being laid out in gardens,' &c. Within the city the changes in the constitution of the nation, and founded two greatest edifices were the royal palace with its the Median capital Ekbatana in one of the most pleahanging gardens, and the temple of Belus, composed of sant sites in the world. Ilis son, Phraortes (B.C. 657eight towers built one above another, to the enormous 635), pursued a career of conquest, subjugated Persia height, it is said, of a furlong.

and other districts of Iran, and perished in an in Fasion Without the city were numerous canals, embank- of Assyria. He was succeeded by his son Cyaxares, ments, &c. for the purpose of irrigating the country, who continued his designs of conquest, and extended the which, as little or no rain fell, depended on the river Median doininion as far westward into Asia Minor as for moisture. • The execution of such colossal works the river Halys. He was engaged in a repetition of his as those of Babylon and Egypt,' it has been remarked, father's attempt against Nineveh, when he was called • demonstrates habits of regular industry, a concen- away to defend his kingdom against a great roving trated population under one government, and above population, belonging, as is most likely, to the Scythian all, an implicit submission to the regal and kingly branch of the Caucasian race (although some reckon sway-contrasted forcibly with the small self-govern- them Mongols), who, bursting with their herds of horses ing communities of Greece and western Europe, where and mares from their native seat in Central Asia, had the will of the individual citizen was so much more driven the Cimmerians, a kindred race, before them energetic.' In the latter countries only such public into Asia Minor, and then had poured themselves over works were attempted as were within the limits of mo- the plateau of Iran. Defeating Cyaxares, they kept derate taste. Nineveh is said to have been larger even him from his throne for a period of twenty-eight years, than Babylon, and is described as an oblong, three during which they ruled in savage fashion over Media, days' journey round--that is, upwards of 60 miles. Persia, &c. At length, having assassinated their chiefs

by a stratagem, Cyaxares regained his dominions, and When Lydia, with its capital Sardis, first began to drove the invaders back into the north. He then be a powerful state, is not known; it is remarkable, renewed his attempt against Nineveh; took it; and re- however, that the Lydians are not mentioned in Homer. duced the Assyrian empire, with the exception of Baby- According to Herodotus, the Lydians traced their hislonia, under his dominion. The Median empire, thus tory back through three dynasties. 1st, The Atyadæ, formed, he bequeathed (B.c. 595) to his son Astyages. from the earliest times to b.č. 1221; 2d, The Heracleidæ,

Astyages having given his daughter Mandané in from B.C. 1221 to B. c. 716; and 3d, The Mermnadae. marriage to a Persian chieftain nanied Cambyses, the Only the last dynasty is historic; the manner in which issue of this marriage was the famous Cyrus, the founder it succeeded to that of the Heracleidæ forms the subject of the Persian monarchy. The circumstances which of a curious Lydian legend. led to the revolt of the Persians under Cyrus against The first king of the Mermnad dynasty was Gyges the Medes, and the dethronement by him of his grand-(B.C. 716-678), the second Ardys (B.C. 678-629), in father Astyages (B.C. 560), had been woven into a whose reign the Commerians invaded Asia Minor, the romance resembling the story of Romulus, even so third Sadyattes (B.C. 629-617), the fourth Alyattes early as the age of Herodotus (B.C. 408), so that that (B. C. 617-560). Each of these Lydian kings was enaccurate historian could not ascertain the particulars. gaged in wars both with the Asiatic Greeks of the • The native Persians,' says Mr Grote, “whom Cyrus coast and the native states of the interior. The growth conducted were an aggregate of seven agricultural and of the Lydian power was impeded by the Commerian four nomadic tribes, all of them rude, hardy, and brave, invasion; but those savage nomades were at length exdwelling in a mountainous region, clothed in skins, pelled by Alyattes; and Cresus, the son of Alyattes ignorant of wine or ruit, of any of the commonest an Ionian wife, having succeeded his father B.c. 560, luxuries of life, and despising the very idea of purchase soon raised himself to the position of a great potentate, or sale. Their tribes were very unequal in point of ruling over nearly the whole country westward of the dignity; first in estimation among them stood the Halys, comprehending Æolian, Ionian, and Dorian Pasargadæ; and the first clan among the Pasargadæ were Greeks; Phrygians; Mysians, Paphlagonians, Bithythe Achaemenidæ, to whom Cyrus belonged. Whether nians, Carians, Pamphylians, &c. At Sardis, the capihis relationship to the Median king whom he dethroned tal of this extensive dominion, was accumulated an was a fact or a politic fiction we cannot well determine, immense treasure, composed of the tribute which the but Xenophon gives us to understand that the con- Lydian monarch derived from the subject states; hence quest of Media by the Persians was reported to him as the proverb. as rich as Crosus.' having been an obstinate and protracted struggle.' Separated from the Median kingdom only by the

Master of Media, the Persian chief in his turn be- river Halys, the Lydian dominion naturally became an came a great Oriental conqueror; indeed all the object of desire to Cyrus after he had acquired the Oriental conquests bear the same character. A no- sovereignty of Media. Accordingly (B. C. 546), promaulic race, led by a chief of great abilities, invades the voked by an invasion of Cræsus, who had received from more organised states, and conquers them; the chief the Delphic oracle the equivocal assurance, that if he assumes the government, and founds a dynasty, which, attacked the Persians he would subvert a mighty moafter a rule of several generations, becomes enervated, narchy,' Cyrus crossed the Halys, advanced into Lydia, and gives way before some new nomadic incursion. The took Sardis, and made Cræsus prisoner. It was infirst power against which Cyrus turned his arms, after tended by the conqueror that the Lydian king should having subdued the Medes, was the famous Lydian be burnt alive—it is even said that the fire was kindled kingdom, which then subsisted in Asia Minor under for the purpose ; Cyrus, however, spared his life, and the great Crasus. And here, therefore, we must give Crosus became his friend and confidential adviser. On some account of the ancient condition of Asia Minor the subversion of the Lydian monarchy, its subjects, and its principalities.

the Greeks of Asia Minor, were obliged to submit to

the conqueror, after having in vain solicited the aid of States of Asia Minor-The Lydians.

their brethren the European Greeks. The LacedæmoThe river Halys divided Asia Minor into two parts. nians indeed sent an embassy into Asia Minor; and East of the Halys, or near its source, were various one of their ambassadors had a conference with Cyrus nations of the Semitic stock-Cappadocians, Cilicians, at Sardis, where he warned him “not to lay hands on Pamphylians, &c.-each organised apart, but all in- any of the Greek towns, for the Lacedæmonians would cluded under the Assyrian, and latterly, as we have not permit it.' • Who are the Lacedæmonians ?' said seen, under the Median empire. West of the Halys, the astonished warrior. Having been informed that the inhabitants were apparently of the Indo-Germanic the Lacedæmonians were a Greek people, who had a race, although separated by many removes from the capital called Sparta, where there was a regular market, Indo-Germans of Persia. Overspreading this part of I have never yet,' said he, been afraid of this kind Asia Minor, as well as Thrace and other parts of of men, who have a set place in the middle of their city south-eastern Europe, this great race had been broken where they meet to cheat one another and tell lies. If up into fragments distinguished by characteristic diffe- I live, they shall have troubles of their own to talk

To enumerate these various nations, assigning about.' To save themselves from the Persians, the to each its exact geographical limits, is impossible: the Ionian portion of the Asiatic Greeks proposed a unichief, however, were the Bithynians, a sort of Asiatic versal emigration to the island of Sardinia—a striking Thracians on the southern coast of the Euxine; the design, which, however, was not carried into execution. Lydians and Carians in the south-west; and, interme- All Asia Minor ultimately yielded to Cyrus. diate between the two, geographically as well as in respect of race and language, the Mysians and Phry.

The Persian Empire. gians. These were the native states; but along the Having subdued Asia Minor, Cyrus next turned his whole Ægean shore was diffused a large Greek popu- arms against the Assyrians of Babylon. His siege and lation, emigrants, it is believed, from European Greece, capture of Babylon (B.C. 538), when he effected his chiefly gathered into cities. These Greeks of Asia entrance by diverting the course of the Euphrates, Minor were of three races--the Æolic Greeks in the form one of the most romantic incidents in history; an north, and the Ionian and Dorian Greeks in the south; incident connected with Scriptural narrative through and perhaps the earliest manifestations of Greek genius, its result--the emancipation of the Jews from their political or literary, were among these Greeks of Asia. captivity. Along with Babylon, its dependencies, The intercourse of these Greeks with the native Lydians, Phænicia and Palestine, came under the Persians. Phrygians, &c. gave rise to mixture of population as Cyrus, one of the most remarkable men of the anwell as to interchange of habits; the native music cient world, having perished in an invasion of Scythia especially of the Lydians and Phrygians became incor- (B.C. 529), was succeeded by his son Cambyses, who porated with that of the Greeks,

annexed Egypt to the Persian empire (B.c. 525), hav


ing defeated Psammanitus, the son of the Pharaoh | whom the empire had began to crumble; how at length, Amasis. Foiled in his intention of penetrating Libya in the reign of Darius Codomannus (B. C. 334), Alex. and Ethiopia, Cambyses was dethroned by a Magian ander the Great retaliated on the Persians the wrongs impostor, who called himself Smerdis, pretending that they had done the Greeks by invading and destroying he was the younger brother of Cambyses, although this their decrepit empire, and organising all the countries brother had been put to death by the order of Cam- between the Adriatic and the Indus under, not a byses during a fit of madness. A conspiracy of seven Semitic, as in the case of the Assyrian empire, nor an great nobles having been formed against the false Indo-Germanic, as in the case of the Persic empire, Smerdis, he was put to death. He was succeeded by but a Greek or Pelasgic system; how, on Alexander's one of the conspiring chiefs called Darius Hystaspes, death (B.C. 323), this vast agglomeration of the human who reigned-over the immense Persian empire, ex- species fell asunder into three Greek monarchies tending from the Nile to the Indus, and beyond it, the Macedonian monarchy, including the states of from B.C. 521 to B.C. 485. •The reigu of Darius,' says European Greece; the Egyptian monarchy of the Mr Grote, “ was one of organisation, different from that Ptolemies, including, besides Egypt, Phænicia, Pales. of his predecessor—a difference which the Persians well tine, and Arabia ; and the Syrian monarchy of the understood and noted, calling Cyrus “the father,” Seleucidæ, comprehending, although with a weak Cambyses “ the master,” and Darius “ the retail trader grasp, Asia Minor (or at least parts of it which had be. or huckster.” In the mouth of the Persians this last longed to the Lydian and Assyrian empires), Syria, epithet must be construed as no insignificant compli- | Assyria, and Babylonia; with the loss, however, of the ment, since it intimates that he was the first to intro- countries between the Tigris and the Indus, where 3 duce some methodical order into the imperial adminis- germ of independence arose (B.C. 236) in a native tration and finances. Under the two former kings nomad dynasty, which ultimately united all the tribes there was no definite amount of tribute levied upon of Iran in one empire, called the Parthian Empire; and the subject provinces. But Darius probably felt it how these three fragments dragged on a separate ex. expedient to relieve the provinces from the burden of istence, full of wars and revolts: all this belongs to undefined exactions. He distributed the whole empire Grecian history--that is, to the history of the Hellenic into twenty departments (called Satrapies), imposing portion of the Pelasgians, whose career is fully detailed upon each a fixed annual tax. This, however, did not in the following number. prevent each satrap (the Persian governor appointed How, about two centuries and a half before Christ, hy the king) in his own province from indefinite re- another, but more mixed portion of this Pelasgic quisitions. The satrap was a little king, who acted family, which had arisen in Italy, and in the course of nearly as he pleased in the internal administration of several centuries rendered itself co-extensive with that his province, subject only to the necessity of sending peninsula-began to assume consequence in the wider up the imperial tribute to the king at Susa, the capital area of the Mediterranean world: how it first grappled of the Persian empire; of keeping off foreign enemies; with the power of the Carthaginians (B.C. 264-201), who and of furnishing an adequate military contingent for for several centuries had been pursuing the career of the foreign enterprises of the great king. To every world-merchants, formerly pursued by their fathers the satrap was attached a royal secretary or comptroller of Phænicians; how it then assailed and subdued the the revenue, who probably managed the imperial fi- crumbling Macedonian inonarchy, incorporating all nances in the province, and to whom the court of Susa Greece with itself (B. C. 134); how, retrograding, so to might perhaps look as a watch upon the satrap him- speak, into Asia, it gradually ate up the Syrian and self. The satrap or the secretary apportioned the sum Egyptian monarchies, till it came into collision with the payable by the satrapy in the aggregate among the Parthian empire at the Euphrates (B. c. 134-B. C. 60); various component districts, towns, or provinces, leav- how, advancing into the new regions of northern and ing to the local authorities in each of these latter western Europe, it compelled the yet uncultured races the task of assessing it upon individual inhabitants. there--the Celts or Gauls, the Iberians, &c.-- to enter the From necessity, therefore, as well as from indolence of pale of civilisation (B. C. 80-50); how thus, from the temper and political incompetence, the Persians were Atlantic to the Euphrates, was founded a new empire, compelled to respect the authorities which they found called • The Roman,' retaining, with vast additions, all standing both in town and country, and to leave in that portion of humanity which the former empires had their hands a large measure of genuine influence. embraced, with the exception of what had lapsed back Often even the petty kings who had governed separate to the Parthians; how this empire subsisted for several districts during their state of independence, prior to centuries, a great mass of matured humanity girt by the Persian conquest, retained their title and dignity comparative barbarism — that is, surrounded on the as tributaries to the court of Susa. The empire of the east by the Parthians, on the south by the Ethiopians, great king was thus an aggregate of heterogeneous ele- on the north by the Germans and Scythians, and on ments, connected together by no tie except that of the west by the roar of the Atlantic; and how at last common fear and subjection--noway coherent nor self-(A. D. 400-475) this great mass, having lost its vitality, supporting, nor pervaded by any common system or fell asunder before the irruption of the barbaric elespirit of nationality.'

ment—that is, the Germans, the Scythians, and the

Arabs - giving rise to the infant condition of the Continuation through Greek and Roman History. modern world : all this belongs to Roman history, How Darius, in consequence of the assistance rendered which forms the subject of a separate treatise. by the Athenians to the Ionian Greeks of Asia Minor, With one general remark we shall conclude; namely, who had revolted against him (B.C. 502), sent a vast that the progress of history--that is, of the Caucasian Persian army into European Greece; how this army development-has evidently been, upon the whole, from was defeated by the Athenian general, Miltiades, with the east westward. First, as we have seen, the Assyrian only 11,000 men, in the glorious battle of Marathon or Semitic fermentation affected western Asia as far as (B.C. 490); how, ten years later, Xerxes, the son and the Mediterranean; then the Persian movement extended successor of Darius, undertook an expedition against the historic stage to the Ægean; after that the Mace. Greece with a host of several millions, and was defeated donian conquest extended it to the Adriatic; and by Then istocles in a naval battle at Salamis (B.C. 480), finally, the Romans extended it to the Atlantic. For which was followed by two contemporaneous defeats of fifteen centuries humanity kept dashing itself against his lieutenants at Platea and Mycalé (B.c. 479); how this barrier; till at length, like a great missionary sent the Persians were thus finally driven back into Asia ; | in search, the spirit of Columbus shot across the Atlantic. how for a century and a half relations, sometimes And now, in the form of a dominant Anglic race, hostile and sometines friendly, were maintained be though with large intermixture, Caucasian vitality is tween the Greek states and the Persian monarchs, the working in its newest method, with Ethiopian help, on degenerate successors of Darius and Xerxes, under the broad and fertile field of America.

« ElőzőTovább »