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Just before the descent of the rain, he cast himself down upon the earth, and put his face between his knees. Chardin relates that the dervises, especially those of the Indies put themselves into this posture, in order to meditate, and also to repose themselves. They tie their knees against their belly with their girdle, and lay their heads on the top of them, and this, according to them, is the best posture for recollection.

HARMER, vol. ii. p. 506.

No. 119.-xviii. 44. A little cloud.] When Elijah's servant reported to his master, that he saw a little cloud arising out of the sea like a man's hand, he commanded him to go up and say unto Ahab, prepare thy chariot, and get thee down, that the RAIN stop thee not. This circumstance was justly considered as the 'sure indication of an approaching shower, for it came to pass in the meanwhile that the heaven was black with clouds and wind, and there was a great rain. Mr. BRUCE (Travels, vol. iii. p. 669.) has an observation which greatly corroborates this relation. He says, "there are three remarkable appearances attending the inundation of the Nile: every morning in Abyssinia is clear and the sun shines; about nine, a small cloud, not above four feet broad, appears in the East, whirling violently round as if upon an axis; but arrived near the zenith, it first abates its motion, then loses its form, and extends itself greatly, and seems to call up vapours from all opposite quarters. These clouds having attained nearly the same height, rush against each other with great violence, and put me always in mind of Elijah's fortelling rain on mount Carmel. The air, impelled before the heaviest mass, or swiftest mover, makes an impression of its own form in the collection of clouds opposite, and the moment it has taken possession of the space made to receive it, the most violent thunder

possible to be conceived instantly follows, with rain; and after some hours the sky again clears."

No. 120. xx. 32. They girded sackcloth on their loins, and put ropes on their heads.] Approaching persons with a sword hanging to the neck is in the East a very humble and submissive act. Thevenot has mentioned this circumstance (part i. p. 289.) in the account he has given of the taking of Bagdad by the Turks, in 1638. When the besieged entreated quarter, the principal officer went to the grand vizier, with a scarf about his neck, and his sword wreathed in it, and begged mercy. The ropes mentioned in this passage were pro. bably what they suspended their swords with.

HARMER, vol. ii. p. 258.

No. 121.-xx. 34. Thou shalt make streets for thee in Damascus.] The circumstances connected with this passage, and those contained in the following extract, so much resemble each other, that it must be apparent with what propriety our translators have chosen the word streets, rather than any other, which commentators have proposed instead of it. “Biazet hauing worthily relieued his beseiged citie, returned againe to the seige of Constantinople; laying more hardly vnto it than before, building forts and bulwarks against it on the one side towards the land; and passing over the strait of Bosphorus, built a strong castle vpon that strait ouer against Constantinople, to impeach so much as was possible all passage thereunto by sea. This streight seige (as most urite) continued also two yeres, which I suppose by the circumstance of the historie, to haue been part of the aforesaid eight yeres. Emanuel, the beseiged emperor, wearied with these long wars, sent an embassador to Biazet, to intreat with him a peace, which Biazet was the more willing to hearken vnto, for that he heard newes

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that Tamerlane, the great Tartarian prince, intended shortly to warre upon him. Yet could not this peace be obtained, but upon condition that the emperor should grant free libertie for the Turks to dwell together in one STREET of Constantinople, with free exercise of their owne religion and laws, onder a judge of their owne nation; and further, to pay vnto the Turkish king a yerely tribute of ten thousand duckats, which dishonourable conditions the distressed emperor was glad to accept of. So was this long seige broken vp, and presently a great sort of Turks with their families were sent out of Bythinia, to dwell in Constantinople, and a church there built for them; which not long after was by the Emperor pulled downe to the ground, and the Turks againe driuen out of the citie, at such time as Biazet was by the mightie Tamerlane overthrowne and taken prisoner."

KNOLLES'S History of the Turks, p. 206.

No. 122.-xxi. 8. So she wrote letters in Ahab's name and sealed them with his seal.] The very ancient custom of sealing dispatches with a seal or signet, set in a ring, is still retained in the East. PocockE says, (Travels, vol. i. p. 186. notes) "in Egypt they make the impression of their name with their seal, generally of cornelian, which they wear on their finger, and which is blacked when they have occasion to seal with it." HANWAY remarks (Trav. i. 317.) that "the Persian ink serves not only for writing, but for subscribing with their seal; indeed many of the Persians in high office could not write. In their rings they wear agates, which serve for a seal, on which is frequently engraved their name, and some verse from the Koran." SHAW also has a remark exactly to the same purpose. Travels, p. 247.

No. 123. xxi. 23. The dogs shall eat Jezebel.] Mr. BRUCE, when at Gondar, was witness to a scene in a

great measure similar to the devouring of Jezebel by dogs. He says, "the bodies of those killed by the sword were hewn to pieces, and scattered about the streets, being denied burial. I was miserable, and almost driven to despair, at seeing my hunting-dogs, twice let loose by the carelessness of my servants, bringing to the court-yard the heads and arms of slaughtered men, . and which I could no way prevent, but by the destruction of the dogs themselves." He also adds, that upon being asked by the king the reason of his dejected and sickly appearance, among other reasons, he informed him, “it was occasioned by an execution of three men, which he had lately seen; because the hyenas, allured into the streets by the quantity of carrion, would not let him pass by night in safety from the palace, and because the dogs fled into his house, to eat pieces of human carcases at their leisure." Travels, vol. iv. p. 81. This account illustrates also the readiness of the dogs to lick the blood of Ahab, 1 Kings xxii. 38. in perfect conformity to which is the expression of the prophet Jeremiah, xv. 3. I will appoint over them the sword to slay, and the dogs

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No. 124.-2 KINGS i. 4.

Down from that bed.

THIS expression may be illustrated by what SHAW

says of the Moorish houses in Barbary (Travels, p. 209.) where, after having observed that their chambers are spacious, of the same length with the square court on the sides of which they are built, he adds, "at one end of each chamber there is a little gallery raised three, four, or five feet above the floor, with a balustrade in the front of it, with a few steps likewise leading up to it. Here they place their beds; a situation frequently alluded to in the holy scriptures, which may likewise ilJustrate the circumstance of Hezekiah's turning his face, when he prayed, towards the wall, (i. e. from his attendants) 2 Kings xx. 2. that the fervency of his devotion might be the less taken notice of and observed. The like is related of Ahab, 1 Kings xxi. 4. though probably he did thus, not upon a religious account, but in order to conceal from his attendants the anguish he was in for his late disappointment.

No. 125.-iii. 11. Who poured water on the hands of Elijah.] This was a part of the service which Elisha performed to his master. We read of it in other instances. PITTs tells us, (p. 24.) "the table being removed, before they rise (from the ground whereon they sit) a servant, who stands attending on them with a cup of water to give them drink, steps into the middle, with a bason, or copper pot of water, somewhat like a coffeepot, and a little soap, and lets the water run upon their hands one after another, in order as they sit." Mr. HANWAY, speaking of a Persian supper, says, (Trav.

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