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view has also been taken by Dr. Mead in his ' Medica Sacra,' and by Dr. J. M. Good in his Study of Medicine.' We cannot perhaps do better than transcribe the opinion of the former of these learned and pious physicians.
“ All the circumstances of Nebuchadnezzar's case agree so well with an hypochondriacal madness, that to me it appears evident that Nebuchadnezzar was seized with this distemper, and under its influence ran wild into the fields; and that, fancying himself transforined into an ox, he fed on grass, after the manner of cattle. For every sort of mad. ness is the disease of a disturbed imagination ; which this unhappy man laboured under tuid seven years. And through neglect of taking proper care of himself, his hair and nails grew to an uncommon length; whereby the latter, growing thicker and crooked, resembled the claws of birds. Now the ancients called people atfecied with ihis kind of madness auxerewTo (wolf-men) or xuvævfqwTo (dog-men); because they went abroad in the night imitating wolves or dogs ; particularly intent upon opening the sepulchres of the dead, and had their legs much uicerated, either from frequent falls or the bites of dogs. "In like manuer are the daughters of Prætus related to have been mad, who, as Virgil says (Ecl. vi. 48):
- Implerunt falsis mugitibus agros.'
• With mimic howlings fill'd the fields.' For, as Servius observes, Juno possessed their minds with such a species of fury, that, fancying themselves cows, they ran into the fields, bellowed often, and dreaded the plough. Nor was this disorder unknown to the moderns; for Schenckius records a remarkable instance of it in a husbandman of Padua, who, imagining himself a wolf, attacked and even killed several people in the fields; and when at length he was taken, he persevered in declaring himself a real wolf, and that the only difference consisted in the inversion of his skin and hair. But it may be objected to our opinion that this misfortune was foretold to the king. so that he might have prevented it by correcting his morals; and therefore it is not probable that it befel him in the course of nature. But we know that those things which God executes either through clemency or vengeance are frequently performed by the assistance of natural causes. Thus, having threatened Hezekiah with death, and being afterwards moved by his prayers, he restored him to life, and made use of figs laid on the tumour as a medicine for his disease. He ordered king Herod, upon account of his pride, to be devoured by worms. And nobody doubts but that the plague, which is generally attributed to Divine wrath, most commonly owes its origin to corrupted air."
In corroboration of the view here taken, it may be observed. that after the seven years, the king describes his reason as returning to him, which as clearly as possible intimates that it had previously been taken from him.
changed, and his thoughts troubled him, so
that the joints of his loins were loosed 1 Belshazzar's impious feast. 5 A hunduriting,
and his knees smote one against another. unknown to the magicians, troubleth the king. 10 At the commendation of the queen, Daniel is
7 The king cried Saloud to bring in the brought. 17 He, reproving the king of pride astrologers, the Chaldeans, and the soothand idolatry, 25 readeth and interpreteth the sayers. And the king spake, and said to writing. 30 The monarchy is translated to the
the wise men of Babylon, Whosoever shall Medes.
read this writing, and shew me the interpreBelshazzAR the king made a great feast to tation thereof, shall be clothed with 'scarlet, a thousand of his lords, and drank wine be- and have a chain of gold about his neck, and fore the thousand.
shall be the third ruler in the kingdom. 2 Belshazzar, whiles he tasted the wine, 8 Then came in all the king's wise men : commanded to bring the golden and silver but they could not read the writing, nor vessels which his father Nebuchadnezzar make known to the king the interpretation had 'taken out of the temple which was in thereof. Jerusalem ; that the king, and his princes, 9 Then was king Be.shazzar greatly his wives, and his concubines, might drink troubled, and his countenance was changed therein.
in him, and his lords were astonied. 3 Then they brought the golden vessels 10 | Now the queen by reason of the that were taken out of the temple of the words of the king and his lords came into house of God which was at Jerusalem; and the banquet house: and the queen spake the king, and his princes, his wives, and his and said, o king, live for ever: Jet not thy concubines, drank in them.
thoughts trouble thee, nor let thy counte4 They drank wine, and praised the gods nance be changed: of gold, and of silver, of brass, of iron, of 11 There is a man in thy kingdom, in wood, and of stone.
whom is the spirit of the holy gods; and in 5 In the same hour came forth fingers the days of thy 10ather light and underof a man's hand, and wrote over against the standing and wisdom, like the wisdom of the candlestick upon the plaister of the wall of gods, was found in him; whom the king the king's palace: and the king saw the part Nebuchadnezzar thy ''father, the king, I say, of the hand that wrote.
thy father, made "master of the magicians, 6 Then the king's 'countenance 'was astrologers, Chaldeans, and soothsayers; I Chald. brought forth. & Chald. brightnesses
* Or, girdles.
5 Chald bindings, ct, karol 7 Or, purple. & Chald. brightnesses.
10 Or, grandfather.
11 Or, grandfather. 1 Chap 4.9.
. Chald. with might.
3 Chald. changed il.
9 Chap. 2. 48.
12 Forasmuch as an excellent spirit, and 16 And I have heard of thee, that thou knowledge, and understanding, "interpreting canst "make interpretations, and dissolve of dreams, and showing of hard sentences, doubts : now if thou canst read the writing, and "dissolving of "doubts, were found in and make known to me the interpretation the same Daniel, whom the king named Bel. thereof, thou shalt be clothed with scarlet, teshazzar: now let Daniel be called, and he and have a chain of gold about thy neck, will shew the interpretation.
and shalt be the third ruler in the kingdom. 13 Then was Daniel brought in before 17 | Then Daniel answered and said bethe king. And the king spake and said fore the king, Let thy gifts be to thyself, unto Daniel, Art thou that Daniel, which and give thy Brewards to another; yet I will art of the children of the captivity of Judah, read the writing unto the king, and make whom the king my father brought out of known to him the interpretation. Jewry?
18 O thou king, the most high God gave 14 I have even heard of thee, that the Nebuchadnezzar thy father a kingdom, and spirit of the gods is in thee, and that light majesty, and glory, and honour : and understanding and excellent wisdom is 19 Ånd for the majesty that he gave him, found in thee.
all people, nations, and languages, trembled 15 And now the wise men, the astrologers, and feared before him: whom he would he have been brought in before me, that they slew; and whom he would he kept alive ; should read this writing, and make known and whom he would he set up; and whom unto me the interpretation thereof: but they he would he put down. could not shew the interpretation of the 20 But when his heart was lifted up, and thing:
his mind hardened "in pride, he was de. 13 Or, of an interpreter, &c. 14 Or, of a dissolver.
18 Or, grandfather. 17 Chald. interpret. 18 Or, fee, as chap. 2.6. 19 Or, to deal proudly. 90 Chald. made to come down. VOL. III.
13 Chald, knots.
24 Or, nou.
posed from his kingly throne, and they took 24 Then was the part of the hand his glory from him :
sent from him ; and this writing was writ21 And he was a driven from the sons of ten. men; and his heart was made like the 25 | And this is the writing that was beasts, and his dwelling was with the wild written, MENE, MENE, TEKEL, asses: they fed him with grass like oxen, UPHARSIN. and his body was wet with the dew of hea- 26 This is the interpretation of the thing: ven; till he knew that the most high God MENE; God hath numbered thy kingdom, ruled in the kingdom of men, and that he and finished it. appointeth over it whomsoever he will.
27 TEKEL; Thou art weighed in the 22 And thou his son, O Belshazzar, hast balances, and art found wanting. not humbled thine heart, though thou knew- 28 PERES; Thy kingdom is divided, est all this;
and given to the Medes and Persians. 23 But hast lifted up thyself against the 29 Then commanded Belshazzar, and Lord of heaven; and they have brought the they clothed Daniel with scarlet, and put a vessels of his house before thee, and thou, chain of gold about his neck, and made a and thy lords, thy wives, and thy concubines, proclamation concerning him, that he should have drunk wine in them; and thou hast be the third ruler in the kingdom. praised the gods of silver, and gold, of brass, 30 | In that night was Belshazzar the iron, wood, and stone, which see not, nor king of the Chaldeans slain. hear, nor know: and the God in whose hand 31 And Darius the Median took the thy breath is, and whose are all thy ways, kingdom, "being about threescore and two hast thou not glorified :
81 Clap. 4. 32. 24 Or, he made his heart equal, &c. 23 Chald. lie as the son of, &c. Verse 1. “Belshazzar."— The name of Belshazzar does not occur in the profane historians; and it has therefore become a question, with which of the Babylonian kings mentioned by them he should be identified. The other perplexities, historical and chronological, which involve this period of Babylonian history, have also been alluded to by us on more than one occasion. In the note to 2 Kings xxv. 27, we have stated, very briefly, the substance of the common account; and, under Ezra i., we have furnished a corrected statement, collected from Dr. Hales. As this matter is of importance to the proper understanding of this chapter, we wish here to return to it, but not further than to enable the reader to see clearly the effect of the different statements. The common account we shall collect from • L'Art de Vérifier les Dates,' and the other from Hales's “ Analysis,' disposing them in opposite columns for the sake of comparison. FROM L'ART DE Verifier.'
From Hales's 'ANALY818.' 605 NEBUCHADNEZZAR, who was succeeded by his son 604 NEBUCHADNEZZAR, was succeeded by his son 562 EviLMERODACH, who having provoked general indig- 561 EVILLERODACH, or İlverodam, who was slain in a
nation by his tyranny and atrocities, was, after a battle against the Medes and Persians, and was short reign of about two years, assassinated by his succeeded by his son
brother-in-law 560 NERIGUIKSAR, or NERICASSOLASSAR, who was regarded | 558 Nerislissar, NıRICASSOLASSAR, or BelSHAZZAR, the as a deliverer, and succeeded by the choice of the
common accounts of whom seem to combine what nation. He perished in a battle against Cyrus the is said both of Neriglissar and his son, opposite. He Persian, and was succeeded by his son
was killed by conspirators on the night of the “im
pious feast,” leaving a son (a boy) 555 LABOROSOARCHOD, notorious for his cruelty and op- 553 LABOROSOARCHOD, on whose death, nine months after,
pression, and who was assassinated by two nobles, the dynasty became extinct, and the kingdom came Gobryas and Gadatas, whose sons he had slain. peaceably to " Darius the Mede," or Cyaxares, who, The vacant throne was then ascended by
on the well known policy of the Medes and Per
sians, appointed a Babylonian nobleman, named 554 NABONADIUS, the LABYNETUS of Herod tus, the NA- NABONAdius, or LaBynerus, to be king or viceroy.
BOANDRL of Josephus, and the BELSHazzar of Da- This person revolted against Cyrus, who had sucniel, who was the son of Evilmerodach, and who ceeded to the united empire of the Medes and Pernow succeeded to the throne of his father. After a sians. Cyrus could not immediately attend to him, voluptuous reign, his city was taken by the Per
but at last marched to Babylon, and took the city, 538 sians, under Cyrus, on which occasion he lost his 536 as foretold by the prophets, and as we have delife.
scribed in the notes on Jer. li. We believe that this form of stating the question too clearly exhibits the difference generally, and concerning Bel. shazzar in particular, to render further explanation necessary. It will be observed that the principal point is, that Hales contends that the succession of Darius the Mede to the Babylonian throne was not attended with war; that Belshazzar was not the king in whose time the city was taken by Cyrus; and, consequently, that the events which took place this night were quite distinct from, and anterior to that siege and capture of the city by the Persian king, which Isaiah and Jeremiah so particularly and remarkably foretold.
8. “They could not read the writing.”—“The reason why the wise men of Babylon could not read the Divine inseription was, that it was written in the primitive Hebrew character, which differed totally from the Chaldee. It was the original from which the Samaritan was formed, and which therefore it nearly resembled, though greatly superior to it
in beauty, symmetry, and elegance. Some advantageous specimens of it are fortunately preserved on sacred shekels and Jewish coins of high antiquity, drawings of which may be seen in Walton's . Supplementum de Siclorum formis et inscriptionibus,' prefixed to the first volume of the London Polyglott Bible, and elsewhere.” (Hales’s · Analysis,' vol. ii, P. 463.)
10. “The queen...came into the banquet house.” –We are informed above, that the “ wives and concubines " of the king were present at the banquet. It therefore seems probable that the “queen” who now first appears was the queenzohet ; and this probability is strengthened by the intimate acquaintance which she exhibits with the affairs of NebuchadDezzar's reign; at the latter end of which, she, as wife of Evil-merodach, who was regent during his father's alienation of mind, took an active part in the internal policy of the kingdom, and in the completion of the great works which Nebuchadnezzar had begun at Babylon. This she continued during the reigns of her husband and of her son, the present Belshazzar. This famous queen Nitocris could not therefore but be well acquainted with the character and services of Daniel. But how happens it that Belshazzar needed the information concerning Daniel which the queen afforded ; and how was it that he should have been unacquainted even with the person (as it appears from verse 13—“ Art thou that Daniel?"-that he was) of so eminent a person and important public officer as Daniel ? An ingenious and not improbable solution of this difficulty has been afforded by Sir John Chardin, in his MS., quoted by Harmer. As mentioned by the queen, Daniel had been made, by Nebuchadnezzar,“ master of the magicians, astrologers, Chaldeans, and soothsayers." of this employment, Chardin conjectures that he had been deprived on the death of that king; and obtains this conclusion from the fact, that when a Persian king dies, both his astrologers and physicians are driven from court — the former for not having predicted, and the latter for not having prevented, his death. If such was the etiquette of the ancient Babylonian, as it is of the modern Persian court, we have certainly a most satisfactory solution of the present difficulty, as Daniel must then be supposed to have relinquished his public employments, and to have lived retired in private life during the eight years occupied by the reigns of Evil-merodach and Belshazzar.
25. “ MENE, MENE, TEKEL, UPHARSIN.”—The word Peres, below in verse 28, is the singular of the word which is here as Pharsis, with the prefixed u (), or “and.” Whether this singular is in exchange for the plural of the text, or whether it should be inserted before that plural, is doubtful. A repetition of the same words, both singular, as in MENE, MENE," or one singular and the other plural, as would be “ Peres, UPHARSIN," are forms employed to give intensity to the sense. The words are Chaldean; but being in the ancient Hebrew character, the Chaldeans could not read them; and if they could have done so, it would have been beyond their power to supply that interpretation which Daniel gives. We may take the following view of the inscription and interpretation from Hales,
THE INTERPRETATION :
come to pass. (See Gen. xli. 32.) TEKELỚ“ Thou art weighed in the balance and found wanting.” (See Job xxxi. 6; Rev. vi. 3.) Peres—“ Thy kingdom is divided," [UPHARSIN] “ And given to the Mede and the Persian.” [Darius and Cyrus.]
27.“ Thou art weighed in the balances, and art found wanting.”—The idea involved in this is sufficiently obvious in itself. Bat it is by no means impossible that the allusion received more force and meaning than we give to it from a reference to some opinion or custom common among the Babylonians. What that was, we cannot say precisely; but probabilities may be suggested by analogies derived from other sources. Thus the Egyptians entertained the belief that the actions of the dead were solemnly weighed in balances before Osiris, and that the condition of the departed was determined according to the preponderance of good or evil. Such judgment scenes are very frequently represented in the paintings and papyri of ancient Egypt, and one of them we have copied as a suitable illustration of the present subject. One of these scenes, as represented on the walls of a small temple at Dayr-el-Medeeneh, has been so well explained by Mr. Wilkinson, that we shall avail ourselves of his description ; for although that to which it refers is somewhat different from the one which we have engraved, his account affords an adequate elucidation of all that ours contains. “Osiris, seated on his throne, awaits the arrival of those souls that are ushered into Amenti. The four genii stand before him on a lotus-blossom (ours has the lotus without the genii], the female Cerberus sits behind them, and Harpocrates on the crook of Osiris. Thoth, the god of letters, arrives in the presence of Osiris bearing in his hand a tablet, on which the actions of the deceased are noted down, while Horus and Aroeris are employed in weighing the good deeds* of the judged against the ostrich feather, the symbol of truth and justice. A cynocephalus, the emblem of truth, is seated on the top of the balance. At length arrives the deceased, who appears between two figures of the goddess, and bears in his hand the symbol of truth,t indicating his meritorious actions, and his itness for admission to the presence of Osiris."
If the Babylonians entertained a similar notion, the declaration of the prophet, “ Thou art weighed in the balances and art found wanting !" must have appeared exceedingly. awful to them. But again, there are allusions in this declaration to some such custom of literally weighing the royal person, as is described in the following passage in the account of Sir Thomas Roe's embassy to the Great Mogul :-"The first of September, (which was the late Mogul's birth-day,) he, retaining an ancient yearly custom, was, in the presence of his chief grandees, weighed in a balance: the ceremony was performed within his house, or tent, in a fair spacious room, whereinto none were admitted but by special leave. The scales in which he was thus weighed were plated with gold; and so was the beam, on which they hung by great chains, made likewise of that most precious metal. The king, sitting in one of them, was weighed first against silver coin, which immediately afterwards was distributed among the poor ;
Ancient Egyptian Scales. then was he weighed against gold ; after that against jewels (as they say), but I observed (being there present with my lord ambassador) that he was weighed against three several things, laid in silken bags in the contrary scale. When I saw him in the balance, I thought on Belshazzar, who was found too light. By his weight of which his physicians yearly keep an exact account), they presume to guess of the present state of his body, of which they speak flatteringly, however they think it to be.""
3 Then this Daniel was preferred above CHAPTER VI.
the presidents and princes, because an i Daniel is made chief of the presidents. 4 They excellent spirit was in him; and the
conspiring against him obtain an idolatrous de- king thought to set him over the whole cree.
is realm. cast into the lions' den. 18 Daniel is saved. 24 His adversaries devoured, 25 and God magnified sought to find occasion against Daniel con, by a decree.
cerning the kingdom; but they could find Ir pleased Darius to set over the kingdom none occasion nor fault; forasmuch as he an hundred and twenty princes, which should was faithful, neither was there any error or be over the whole kingdom;
fault found in him. 2 And over these three presidents; of 5 Then said these men, We shall not find whom Daniel was first : that the princes any occasion against this Daniel, except we might give accounts unto them, and the find it against him concerning the law of his king should have no damage,
*"This, M. Champollion supposes to be the heart. I still incline to the constructiou I have put upon it-a type of the good actions of the deceased."
Sometimes, instead of the ostrich-feather, the deceased bears a vase (which is placed in the other scale), and it has then a similar import."