Volume I[867 pages]
VOLUME I - BOOK VII - CHAPTER I
IONIANS, ORIGIN OF—DERIVATION OF IONIAN—ARGONAUTS—LINGA AND YONI—THE ARGHA
It has been a general, but a very erroneous opinion, that there were no religious wars among the ancients. But we read of them in Egypt, and from the inquiries of our countrymen into the habits and manners of the oriental nations of very remote times, we learn that traces yet exist, which cannot be mistaken, of religious wars in India of the very worst description—wars not exceeded in duration or atrocity by any of those in modern Europe, bad as they have been. It also appears that the religions of India became, in very early times, divided into an almost inconceivable number of sects, some of which, after bloody wars, were expelled to the West, under different names. In one of these sects, either driven out or emigrated from India, I think will be found the ancient Ionians. The story of the latter being a colony from Athens is not worth a moment's consideration. … As usual, the Greeks being perfectly ignorant of their origin, in order to account for it they invented a story; and in this case, it was of a king called Ion, from whom it was said that they took their name. It is not improbable that they might have arrived at Athens from the North-east by way of Thrace. But it may be a doubt whether part of them may not have come by sea at a more early period to Argos, and the Argolis, where they are found to have been settled. They were also said to have once dwelt in Achia, whence adjoining sea and islands had the name of Ionian. But their principal settlement was in Asia Minor, on the western coast of which they had a very fine country, and twelve states or tribes in a confederacy, which all assembled at stated times to worship at a temple built by them in common, like that of the Jews, a circumstance worthy of attention; it was called Pan-Ionium. We have here a very close resemblance to the Israelitish system. I suspect that the district was called by this name, but that the national temple was at Ephesus, a town which was said to have been built by Amazons, and was certainly one of the principal Ionian cities, if not the chief of them. Here was the famous image of the BLACK Di-ana, or Di-jana, or Dia-jana, which was supposed to have descended from heaven.
On the derivation of the word Ionian, Dr. Lemprere says, "It is generally thought to come from the Hebrew Iavan, or (if pronounced with the quiescent vau) Ion; and in like manner the Hellenes are thought to be the same with Elisa, in the sacred writings, more especially their country Hellas. Hence Bochart makes Iavan, the son of Japhet, the ancestor of the Iones." He had just before observed that Greece was anciently divided between the Hellenes and the Ionians, and that Hellen has the same meaning as Ioni, and both that of the female generative power. They are said by Conon to have descended from a king called Hellen, the son of Deucalion, one of whose grandsons settled in the Peloponnesus, then called Apia. Thus we find them to descend from a man saved at the flood of Noah, Japeti; and also from Deucalion, said by the Greeks to have been saved from the flood, whose SON was called Hellen. …
The Hindoo books are full of accounts of the expulsion from India of a class of persons called Yavanas. … The person in the Pentateuch called Javan is thought to have planted Greece; the LXX. were of this opinion, and constantly translate the Hebrew word Javan into `Ellaj, the country of Hellen, or Greece.* When I consider the circumstance of the Yavanas being Greeks, and the fact, that many Greek towns, as I shall presently shew, were called after those in India, I cannot doubt that some at least of the Greeks states were colonies from that country. "Javan was called by Moses 0&* iun. Between this name and that of Janus there is thought to be a great similitude."**
* Shuckford, Lib. iii.
** Bryant, Anal. Vol. II. p.251.
The elegant, polite, and enlightened Greeks, a nation celebrated for wise men, had a history of a voyage called the Argonautic expedition, of a company of heroes, who sailed from Greece in a ship called the Argo, to the kingdom of Colchis, in search of the golden fleece of a Ram. …
Again, Mr. Maurice says, "Dr. Rutherford, in one of the most ingenious productions on the subject of natural philosophy that ever was published, has in the clearest manner evinced that the contellations delineated on the sphere, though apparently allusive to the Argonautic expedition, could not possible be the fabrication of Chiron, or any other Grecian for that purpose; since the greatest part of the stars in the constellation Argo, and in particular, Canopus, the brightest of them, were not visible in any part of Greece; and no astronomer would be so absurd as to delineate constellations to direct the course of a vessel, the principal stars in which 'could not be seen by the mariners either when they set out or when they came to the end of the voyage.' "*
* Ind. Ant.
Of the Argonautic expedition Sir W. Jones says, "That it neither was according to Herodotus, nor indeed could have been originally, Grecian, appears when stripped of its poetical and fabulous ornaments, extremely disputable : and I am disposed to believe it was an emigration from Africa and Asia, of that adventurous race who had first been established in Chaldæa."*
* Supplement to Ind. Chron..
In a little treatise of Mr. Maurice's, called Sanscreet Fragments, published in 1798, is an account of a sage called Agastya, whom he shews to be the star Canopus, the famous steerman or pilot of the Argo of Greece. … When we consider how intimately this Argonautic story is blended with all the Greek mythoses—what multitudes of their towns and districts are called from it—the accounts of it in the poems of Homer—and that its stars are not visible in Greece, how can we doubt that all their systems came from the same place whence it came, viz. India ?
It now becomes necessary to make a few observations on the Indian Linga or the I, or Yoni, as connected with the celebrated boat of the Hindoos, called Argha, which I propose to shew gave rise, among the Greeks, to the fables of the above-named Argo, Argonauts, &c., &c. In the old philosophy of the Hindoos I have shewn that the world was supposed to be destroyed and renewed at the end of certain periods, and this process was supposed to be of immense, if not eternal duration. This was a very recondite and philosophical idea, and was partly founded upon the principle that God was perfectly wise, and that he would form or create nothing that was bad, and that he was not changeable, he would not really destroy that which he had made, which was necessarily good : and that consequently what appears to us to be changed must be only periodical, and therefore that a periodical renovation of every thing would take place. At the end of every period the world was supposed to be destroyed. At this moment Brahme or Brahme-Maia, the Creator, was believed to be in a state of repose or inaction in the profundity of the great abyss or firmament : and the male and female generative powers of nature, in conjunction, were said to float or brood on the surface of the firmament of abyss, and in themselves to preserve the germ of animated nature,—of all plants and animated beings. This operation of the two powers is described by the Linga, in the shape of a mast, fixed in the Yoni, in the shape of a boat, floating in the firmament. After this operation has proceeded a certain time, the female generative power begins to act, by feeling the passion of love, theerwj of the Greeks, which is described by the sending forth of a dove, and this is the beginning of a new age. Of this Col. Wilford says, * "Satyavrata having built the ark, and the flood increasing, it was made fast to the peak of Naubandha with a long cable."**
* Asiat. Res. Vol. VI. p.524.
** Nau-band-a … mount of Sati the Creator … mount of God (il) the Creator …
The mystic Ocean in which the ship Argha floated, is the ethereal space or fluid, the3*89 rqio,* called firmament in Gen. i. 7, in which the bodies of the planetary system revolve. The Ark or Argha, the ship, with its mount Meru in the centre by way of mast, may be seen in every temple in India, and requires no explanation. It is the Omphale of Delphi. …
* From this word rqio came the rack of Shakespeare. "Shall leave not a rack behind." See title-page of the Celtic Druids.
The Earth was often called the Arga : this was imitated by the mystic Meru. The north pole was the Linga, surrounded by seven dwips or zones one above another, and seven seas, or rivers, or waters, and an outward one called Oceanus. In this Oceanus the whole floated. Thus, the earth, mother Eartha, became the Argha or Ione, and Meru the pole, the Linga.
It is quite clear that this mythos must have been formed in the infancy of astronomical science, when the plane of the ecliptic was believed to coincide with the plane of the equator.
"During the flood, Brahma,* or the creating power, was asleep at the bottom of the abyss : the generative powers of nature, both male and female, were reduced to their simplest elements—the Linga and the Yoni. The latter assumed the shape of the hull of a ship, since typified by the Argha, whilst the Linga became the mast. (Maha-deva is sometimes represented standing erect in the middle of the Argha, in the room of the mast. Maha-deva means magnus-deus.) In this manner they were wafted over the deep, under the care and protection of Vishnu." (The three in one, and one in three.) "When the waters had retired, the female power of nature appeared immediately in the character of Capoteswari, or the DOVE, and she was soon joined by her consort Capoteswara."** I think he must be blind who does not see here the duplicate of the Mosaic allegory of a ship and a deluge. The animated world in each case preserved in a boat, or Argha, or Theba,%"( tbe, Qizh, but in the latter, instead of putting all the live animals into one ship, the germ or principle of generation is substituted.
* Brahma is!9" bra, creator, and ma, or maha, great—that is, great Creator. Vide Book v. chap. i. sect. 10, n.
** Asiat. Res. Vol. VI. p.523
The Argha is represented by a vessel of copper, by the Brahmins in their sacred rites.* It is intended to be a symbol or hieroglyphic of the universal mother. It is very often in the form of an elliptic boat or canoe, having both ends similarly pointed, or biprora, as its name was.** In the center of it is an oval rising, embossed, which represents the Linga. … By this union of the Linga and Yoni, or Ioni, it is intended mystically to represent the two principles of generation—to represent them as one. This boat, as I have already intimated, was the Argo of Greece, the name of the mystic ship in which the Ionians, who lived at Argos, sailed to seek the golden fleece of the Ram. It was also the name of a man, who is said to have lived at AMphilochium, in the bay of AM-brasius, and it was the invention of divine wisdom or Minerva. This Argha was also the cup in which Hercules sailed over the ocean.***
*Asiat. Res. Vol. VIII. pp. 52, 275.
** This was the shape of the ship of the Argonauts.
*** Asiat. Res. Vol. III. pp. 363, 365.
… In the ceremonies of the Hindoos there is no emblem in more universal use. …
The Protogenos or First Emanation from the divine power—from the head of Jupiter, was Minerva, or Divine Wisdom, or the female generative power, of which the Ioni or Argha of India was an emblem. … This was the Rasit of Genesis, the Wisdom or the FIRST principle (or principe in French) by which God formed the world. It was the Argo of Greece : it was the Arch of the feminine gender, which meant the first cause, the ruler, the beginning.* Its verb was Arcw, to command, to set in order.** …As a boat was also the emblem of the female generative power, the two came at length to be confounded.
*See Jones's Lex.
** The Hebrew993 ord and the English order are the same Saxon words.
VOLUME I - BOOK VII - CHAPTER II
THE LOTUS—MAURICE ON THE LOTUS—PAYNE KNIGHT ON THE SAME—MOORE ON THE SAME—NIMROD ON THE SAME
The double sex typified by the Argha and its contents is also by the Hindoos represented by the "Nymphæa or Lotus, floating like a boat on the boundless ocean, where the whole plant signifies both the earth and the principles of its fecundation. The germ is both Meru and the Linga : the petals and filaments are the mountains which encircle Meru, and are also a type of the Yoni : the leave of the Calyx are the four vast regions to the cardinal points of Meru : and the leaves of the plant are the Dwipas or isles round the land of Jambu."* …
* Asiat. Res. Vol. III. p.364.
Maurice says, "Among the different plants which ornament our globe, there is no one which has received so much honour from man as the Lotos or Lily, in whose consecrated bosom Brahma was born, and Osiris delighted to float. This is the sublime, the hallowed, symbol that eternally occurs in oriental mythology : and in truth not without reason; for it is itself a lovely prodigy. Throughout all the Northern hemisphere it was every where held in profound veneration, and from Savary we learn that that veneration is yet continued among the modern Egyptians." And we shall find in the sequel, that it still continues to receive the respect, if not the adoration of a great part of the Christian world, unconscious, perhaps, of the original reason of their conduct.
The following is the account given of it by Mr. Payne Knight, in his very curious dissertation on the Phallic worship :*
* Pp. 84-86. This book was never sold, but only given away. A copy is kept in the British Museum, but it is not in the catalogue. The care displayed by the trustees in keeping it out of the catalogue, to prevent the minds of the studious gentlemen who frequent that institution from being corrupted is above all praise ! ! ! I have read it in the Museum.
"The Lotos is the Nelumbo of Linnæus. This plant grows in the water, and amongst its broad leaves puts forth a flower, in the centre of which is formed the seed vessel, shaped like a bell or inverted cone, and punctuated on top with little cavities or cells, in which the seeds grow. The orifices of these cells being too small to let the seeds drop out when ripe they shoot forth into new plants, in the places where they were formed : the bulb of the vessel serving as a matrix to nourish them, until they acquire such a degree of magnitude as to burst it open, and release themselves, after which, like other aquatic weeds, they take root wherever the current deposits them. This plant, therefore, being thus productive of itself, and vegetating from its own matrix, without being forested in the earth, was naturally adopted as the symbol of the productive power of the waters, upon which the active spirit of the Creator operated in giving life and vegetation to matter. We accordingly find it employed in every part of the northern hemisphere, where the symbolical religion, improperly called idolatry, does or ever did prevail. The sacred images of the Tartars, Japanese, and Indians, are almost all placed upon it, of which numerous instances occur in the publication of Kæmpfer, Sonnerat, &c. The Brahma of India is represented sitting upon the Lotos throne, and the figures upon the Isiac table hold the stem of this plant surrounded by the seed vessel in one hand, and the CROSS representing the male organs of generation in the other : thus signifying the universal power, both active and passive, attributed to that Goddess."
Creuzer says,* from the peculiar mode in which the sacred Lotus propagates itself by its bean, came the religious veneration for this seed; on which Mr. Muller observes, that it was from this that Pythagoras, who was of the school of the Buddhists, ordered his disciples to hold in veneration and to abstain from beans. … The Nelumbo Nymphæa is not a native of Egypt, though seen upon almost all its ancient monuments, but of the North-eastern parts of Asia.** …
* Liv. prem. Ch. ii. note, p.160; Maurice, Ant. Hind. Vol. III p.245.
** Payne Knight's Inquiry, Sect. 146.
Of the Lotos, Mr. Moore says, "The Nymphæa or Lotos floating on the waters, is an emblem of the world : the whole plant signifies both the earth, and its two principles of fecundation. … "*
* Asiat. Res. Vol. VIII. p.308; Moore, Hind. Panth. p.270.
Concerning the Lotus of the Hindoos, Nimrod* says, "The Lotus is a well--known allegory, of which the expanse calyx represents the ship of the Gods floating on the surface of the water, and the erect flower arising out of it, the mast thereof : … but as the ship was Isis or Magna Mater, the female principle, and the mast in it the male deity, …" This plant was also used in the sacred offices of the Jewish religion. In the ornaments of the temple of Solomon the Lotus or lily is often seen.
* Vol. I. p.127, Sup. Ed.
Athenæus says that Suson was a Greek word for a Lily, and that the name of the city Susa menat the city of Lilies.* This is very remarkable, as it was the capital of the Cushites or Ethiopians. But the Lotus of the NIle and Ganges was, I believe, dark blue, which sometimes was the colour of Cristna : but he was as often black as blue. …
* Nimrod, Vol. I. p.44.
VOLUME I - BOOK VII - CHAPTER III
THE LOADSTONE—HELEN ATHENA—YAVANAS—DIVISION OF THE FOLLOWERS OF THE MALE AND FEMALE PRINCIPLES, AND THEIR REUNION
In my Celtic Druids I have proved that the loadstone [or magnet] was known to the ancients; and I think it was used by the priests for the purposes of superstition, for which it was evidently peculiarly calculated.* …
* Aristotle describes the Mariner's Compass. See Niebuhr, Vol. I p.28.
The name of the chief Grecian city of the Ionians, Athena, was the name of the female generative principle, as was also Helena, called by Lycophron the Dove, which is a translation of the word Pleias, and also of the word Semiranis,* and Ion or Ione. The Ionian Athenians claimed to be called Athenians from Athena, which was the name of Minerva, who was both the female generative principle and divine wisdom. The Greeks were called Hellenes, which has precisely the same meaning as Ionians. And they were called Argives from the ship Argo, whihc was invented by Minerva, who fixed in the prow of it the pole or phallus cut at Dodona … All these names have a direct reference to the female generative power, and had their origin in India. …
* Nimrod, Vol. I. p.451.
Mr. Bryant says, "The Grecians were, among other titles, styled Hellenes, being the reputed descendants of Hellen. The name of this personage is of great antiquity : and THE TRUE ETYMOLOGY FOREIGN." Again, "The Hellenes were the same as the Iönim, or Iwnhj, whence Hesychius very properly mentions Iwnaj, `Ellhnaj. The Ionians and Hellenes are the same family. The same is said to be said of the Æolians and Dorians : they were all from one source, being descended from the same ancestors, the Ionim of Babylonia and Syria : … The term Hellen was originally a sacred title."*
* Anal. Vol. III. p.383.
… Mr. Bryant has shewn that Jason was as well known in the East as in Greece;* that he was styled Argos, and gave name to a mountain near Ecbatana in Media. All this tends to strengthen the proofs that the Argive, Hellenian, or Ionian doctrines came from the East. Mr. Bryant says says,** "The city Antioch, upon the Orontes, was called Iönah.*** … Who these Argeans were that founded this city, Iöna, needs not, I believe, any explanation." I think not. …
* Anal. Vol. II. p.513. ** Anal. Vol. III. p.370.
*** Steph. Byzant.Iwnh.
Among the Hindoos, the natives of the Western world are called Yavanas. The word Yavana is a regular participial form of the Sanscrit root Yu,* from which root the word Yóni or the female nature is derived. Thus the Yavanas are the same as Yónijas or the Yoni-ans. And here we find the origin of the Ionians, as we might expect, in a religious principle—a principle which, though now almost lost and forgotten, I do not doubt formerly placed one half of mankind in arms against the other, the feuds of the two covering the world, for many generations, with carnage and blood : a feud about the most ridiculous and trifling of nonsense. "The Yavanas were so named from their obstinate assertion of a superior influence in the Yoni or female, over the Linga or male nature, in producing perfect offspring."** And from this nonsense, almost as absurd as most of the sectarian doctrines of the Christians, the whole world was involved in war and misery.
* In syriac Yo or Io both male and female.
** Asiat. Res. Vol. III. p.358.
In the earliest times of which we have any records, the Brahme-Maia, that is the male and female generative principles in union, or the Linga and the Ioni, were the objects of adoration. After some time the division, which I have just noticed, took place, and a terrible war arose between the followers of the Linga and those of the Ioni, and the latter were at last expelled, with great slaughter, to the West. This war was between the followers of Iswara the active generative principle, and the Yónijas the followers of the passive generative principle. It was probably the origin of the Greek fable of the war between the Gods and the Giants, or sons of the earth,* which we know, from Nonnus, had its origin in India.** For a more particular account of this war I refer to the Asiatic Researches.*** This was the famous war of the Maha-barat, in which the Buddhists were expelled from South India. The Buddhists were particularly attached to the male principle.
* Asiat. Res. Vol. III. p.360.
** Dionys. 1. 34, v. 241, ab. Asiat. Res. Ibid.
*** Vol. III. p.361.
In this manner the ancient religion became divided into two : the sect which adored the sacred Yoni or female generative principle alone, were called Yavanas,* and were expelled from India, and are to be found almost all over the Western world. But we are informed that after some time a reconciliation took place, and the two parties united, and once more returned to the worship of the double principle. This is very important. …
* Asiat. Res. Vol. IV. p.510.
From the reunion of the two principles it is that we have the Ioni and Linga united in almost every temple in India, as well as at Delphi, &c., in Greece; in the former, described by the two objects in union, in the latter, by the stone pillar and orifice in the earth called Omphe, and by the boat, the Argha, with a man in it, carried in procession in their ceremonies. The meaning of the united two, the self-existent being, at once both male and female—the Aleim, called Jah in Genesis, and the IE on the temple of Delphi, the Ieo of Greece, the Iu-piter Genetrix of Latium.
… At Eleusis there was a famous vessel called the Mundus Cereris, used in the mysteries. It was probably the Argha of India; it was supposed to contain the male and female organs of generation.
Another sect which was expelled from India was called by the name of Iadavas. They were said to be descendants of one Yadu,* the father of Cristna, to have been persecuted by an enemy of Cristna's, and to have emigrated during his minority.** … The word Ia-du is evidently the Deus or the Divus Ia or Ie, the God Ie. Of course the descendants of Yadu are his votaries or followers. …
* Cristna, called Yadava, was the descendant of Yadu, the son of Yayáti. Asiat. Res. The Iadu of Mr. Maurice ought probably to be written Idv—it would then mean the God I.
** Asiat. Res. Vol. III. pp. 326, 327.
Mount Meru, the Moriah of India, is the primeval emblem of the Linga and the earth, Mother Eartha, is the mysterious Yóni expanded, and open like the Padma or Lotos, as we have seen, with its seed in the centre, an emblem of the same thing. Iswara is called Argha-nát'h´a or the Lord of the broad-shaped vessel; and Osiris or Ysiris, as Hellanicus calls him, was, according to Plutarch, the commander of the Argo, and was represented by the Egyptians, in their processions, in a boat carried on the shoulders of 72 men, and at Delpphi in an umbilicus of white marble. I have some suspicion, that the history of the Argonautic expedition is an allegorical description of the war of the two principles, and their reunion.
VOLUME I - BOOK VII - CHAPTER IV
SHIP OF EGYPT AND GREECE—DUPUIS ON THE ARGONAUTS—ARKS AND AREA—THEBES, TIBET
In the mysteries of Egypt and Greece a ship was commonly used—this was the Argha. But it has been remarked by Mr. Bryant that this ship was not a common ship, but was of a particular construction; was, in fact, a mystic ship.* It had both ends alike, was a correct, very much elongated, ellipse, and was called AmFiprumnaŽj Amphiprumnaus. Hesychius says, … Amphiprumna are used in voyages of salvation. This alludes to the processions in which these ships were carried about, in the middle of which was placed the phallus. They were sometimes of immense size. "Ælian** informs us, that a Lion was the emblem of this God in Egypt (i.e. Hephaistos) : and in the curious description which Capella has given us of the mystic ship navigated by seven sailors, we find that a Lion was figured on the mast in the midst of the effulgence which shone around. This ship was a symbol of the Universe—the seven planets were represented by the seven sailors—and the Lion was the emblem of Phtha, the principle of light and life."*** … I think in the ship Argo, or Nautilus, with its mast supplied by Minerva or divine wisdom, I can perceive a beautiful mythos. It is really a ship, not of human, but of divine, invention and manufacture. From a careful consideration of the Argonautic story, I can entertain little doubt that it is a mistaken and misrepresented Indian mythos. The arguments of Dr. Rutherford given in Chapter I. Section 3, clearly prove, that it must have had its origin very many degrees of the South of Greece; and this must have been, I think, where, as I shall presently shew, the Bay of Argo, and the Golden or Holy Chersonesus, that is, South India and Siam, are to be found. It is probable that the solution of this enigma will be found in the Vedas or Puranas.
* Bryant, Anal. Vol. II. p.224.
** Lib. xii. *** Drummond, Class. Journ. No. XXXIX.
Mons. Dupuis thought the Argonautic story merely astronomical. I must say I cannot entirely agree with him. I believe it was both astronomical and astrological, or magical or alchemical. It was, in fact, all four, for they were so closely united, and folly and nonsense were so completely mixed up with real science, that it is impossible to separate them. …
I believe that whatever was meant by the Mhlon of the Argonauts, was also meant by the Mhlon of the Hesperides. The same mythos is concealed—that the Ioninan heresy of the Magna Mater, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, of Paradise, and the allegories of the tree bearing twelve fruits, &c., &c., are all implicated. In one case, the book or written skin conveyed the knowledge; in the other the tree, of which the leaves were letters; the fruits, the books conveying knowledge, &c.
… All the ancient nations appear to have had an ark or Argha [the Hebrew Arca means box not ship], in which to conceal something sacred; and in all of them (unless I except that of the Jews) the Yoni and Linga were inclosed.
… The Argha of the Hindoos is of various shapes,* oval, like a boat, having both ends alike, that is crescent shaped, as well as round and square. The name Argha does not mean a boat, but merely the proper name of that variously-shaped structure. …
* Asiat. Res. Vol. II. p.364.
It is a striking circumstance that the two cities of Thebes should be called by the Hebrews word for this ship or box—the word %"( Tbe or Qizh or Thibe, which answers to the names of several Greek towns—Argos. It is also the name of Tibet, whence came all the sacred concerns of the Hindoos, the cradle, in fact, of the human race. One name of Tibet is also Balistan, i.e. place of Baltis. In or near Tibet is the mount called Naubanda, or mount of the ship's cable, called so, as the Brahmins say, from this ship Argha being simulatively fastened to it when it floated in the ocean, carrying within it the two principles of generation or the germ of animal life, in a state of quiescence and union—before the eroj* or divine love began to act upon the Brahme-Maia who was reposing at the bottom of the profound abyss. After a time divine love began to act, and the creator, Brahm, divided himself into three; the creating, the preserving, and the destroying powers, described in our books by Adam and Eve and their three sons, and by Noah and his three sons. This all alludes, I think, to the origin of the sects which became dispersed about the world.**
* Cupid, called in some mythoses the oldest of the Gods.
** To Noah a fourth son was said to be born, called Inachus, the father of the Ionians.
VOLUME I - BOOK VII - CHAPTER V
JANUS—APHRODITE AND DIANA. GANESA—THALES, AND MEANING OF PROPER NAMES—TWO SYRIAS; TWO MERUS; TWO MORIAHS—THE GREEKS NEW-NAMED THEIR CONQUESTS. OM
The Romans and Etruscans had a God called Janus : of his origin they were perfectly ignorant. He was absolutely unknown in Greece. … Janus was not one of what they called their twelve great Gods, but he was said to be the father of them all. He had twelve altars erected to him. He held in one hand letters denoting 365, and in the other the keys to heaven, which he opened to the good and shut to the wicked. The first month of the year, Januarius, was dedicated to him. … He was called Junonius from the Goddess Juno, whose name Mr. Bryant resolves into Juneh, which signifies a dove, and is in the Hebrew language %1&* iune, and is the same as the Yoni or Yuni, the female principle, as observed by Col. Wilford. On his coins are often seen a boat and dove, with a chaplet of olive leaves, or an olive branch. Gale, after observing that Juno was the same as Jana, and that Janus came from %* Jah of the Hebrews, and that Diana was Di-va Jana, or Dea Jana, says also, that she was the same as Astarte or Asteroth of the Sidonians, and had the head of a Bull. He also says that she was the Belisama of the Hebrews.* In Sanscrit DI-Jana is the Goddess Jana.
* Court. Gent. Vol. II. pp. 120, 121.
… He was supposed to open and shut the gates of heaven in the morning and evening, and thus the prayers of men were admitted by his means to the Gods. C. Bassus says, he was represented (bifrons) double-faced, because he was the porter (janitor) of heaven and hell. January was called after him, because it was the gate of the year—the opening of the year. Twelve altars were erected to him, because he presided over the first days of the twelve months. The doors of his temple were shut in time of peace, and open in time of war.
Jana was the same as Diana, (i.e. Di-iana,) or Venus, or Juno, or Lucina, the goddess of parturition, in which capacity she was called Diana, Di-iana, or the divine Jana. … Mr. Faber says, "Juno herself, indeed, was the same character as Isis or Parvati, in her varied capacity of the ship Argha, the Yoni and the sacred Dove."*
* Pag. Idol. Vol. I. p.389.
… Now when I reflect on the singular repetition of names of places in the Eastern part of Asia, and in the Western part of it, the Sions, the Moriahs or Merus, the Rama, near Jerusalem and Gaza, the Semi-rama-is of Babylon, of India, and of Ascalon, the Hercules of Maturea, and the Hercules or Samson of Gaza, (Iona), I cannot help suspecting that Syria or Suria is the Western country of the Soors of India, and that Assuria is the Western country of the Assoors, two celebrated and opposed sects of India, the first meaning devotees of Sur, the sun or light; and the other a name of reproach given them by their enemies, meaning a-soor or a-sur, without light, darkness, the meaning of the names of the two sects in India, but which we may be well assured the latter never gave to themselves, but only received it from their enemies, their real name being not told to us, or being Suri or Soors. The ASSOORS of India were a very bad race of people; so were the Carthaginians; and both for the same reason, probably, because we only hear the account from their enemies, who may have destroyed all their records and books, if they had any. … The poets Dionysius and Apollonius observe, that there were more countries than one called Assyria. …
As we have seen that there were two Elephantas, two Matureas, and two Sions, the reader will not be surprised to find two Moriahs. The Moriah of Isaiah and of Abraham, is the Meru of the Hindoos, and the Olympus of the Greeks.* Cruden expounds it the mount of doctrine. … Of the mountain Moriah, Mr. Faber** says, "I greatly doubt whether the name of this hill be Hebrew : with Mr. Wilford, I am much inclined to believe, that it was a local Meru or imitative Paradisiacal Ararat." In this I quite agree with Mr. Faber. It was nothing but a Meru.***
* Al-om-pi. ** Orig. Pag. Idol. Vol. III. p.620.
*** The Hindoos had in the North or upper India a mountain of the moon. In imitation of this when the Palli or Palestini took possession of Syria, they called the most northern of its mountains Lebanon, which means moon. See Celtic Druids, App. p.310.
It is a well known fact, that the Greeks gave new names to almost all the towns and countries which they conquered or acquired. If the place had a name whose meaning was known to them, the new title was often a mere translation. But this had all the effect of new names. … It is probable that the ancient names continued among the natives, and Dr. Clarke has observed, that after the conquest of the countries by the Saracens and Turks, they appear to have retaken their old appellations. … In the following names of places, The OM of India I think is very apparent. I cannot help suspecting that this OM is, at last, nothing but the monogram M, the numerical symbol of the God of the cycle of 600. Generally speaking, a person will look in vain into the Greek geographers for these Oms, and nobody will doubt that they are ancient and not modern names.* "Homs-Emesa; Om Keis-Gadara; Om el Djemal; Om-Ezzertoun; Om-Haretein; Om-el Kebour; Om-Waled; Om-'Eddjemal; Om-ba, where resides the Sheikh or EL HAKEM; Om-el-Sheratyth; Tel-Houm, Capernaum; Om-el-Taybe; Ammon or Philadelphia; Om Djouze; Om-el-Reszasz; Om-Asmes; Om-teda; Biar Om-jydjein; Omyle; Om-Kheysyr; Om-Shomar; Om-Dhad, places near Siani," &c., &c.**
* See Bk. V. Chap. II. Sect. 3.
** Burckhardt's Travels in the Decapolis or Houran, and to Mount Sinai.
VOLUME I - BOOK VII - CHAPTER VI
ID-AVRATTA, MERU AND MEROE—EDEN AND ITS RIVERS—WHISTON AND JOSEPHUS ON DITTO—DELOS—PLAN OF THE MYSTIC CITY—HANGING GARDENS AND SEVEN HILLS—SELEUCUS OF ANTIOCH—GREEK MYTHOLOGIES—HOMER—TROY, ILION—ULYSSES AND ST. PATRICK
To the work of the learned person known under the name of Nimrod, I am chiefly indebted for the following observations : they appear to me to confirm the doctrines advanced by me, in a very remarkable manner.
Ilavratta, Id-avratta, or Ararat, or Mount Meru, of the Indians, was surrounded with seven belts of land, and seven seas, and, beyond them, by one much greater, called the Ocean. The Mount, with its seven belts in the form of an ellipse, was a type of the planets in their elliptic orbits—with the sun, the seat of the generative principle in their centre, all floating in the ocean or firmament. The whole was represented by the Lotus, swimming in the water; by the ship of Noah and its eight sailors; by the Argha and its mast; and (as we shall soon see) by a tower in each city, or an Argha-polis, or Arco-polis, or acropolis, and seven other hills, and surrounded with seven districts, and one larger than the others, called oceanus, at the outside. On the top of the Mount Meru, called the Mount of Saba, or of the congregation or heavenly hosts, was the city of Brahmapore; the place of assembly of the Gods, and it was square, not round or elliptical. There the Gods were said to assemble in consultation, on the side of the Mount of the North.
Here we find the seat of God with its seven earths, emblematical of the sun and seven planets. And the Hindoo Sabha, called congregation, meaning the same as Sabaoth, "Lord God of Sabaoth," Lord God of the heavenly hosts, the starry hosts. We always end with the sun and heavenly hosts. And here is also Il-avratta, holy Avratta, or Ararat. The Saba is what we call in the Bible Sabaoth, but in the Hebrew it is the same as the Sanscrit zba; and generally means Lord of the planetary bodies—!"7 zba-e-smim, though, perhaps, the stars may sometimes be included by uninitiated persons, here is the origin of the Sabæans, which has been much sought for. See Parkhurst in voce.*
* Faber, Orig. of Pag. Idol. There was an obelisk in Babylon, according to Diodorus Siculus, (Lib. ii.) erected by Semiranis, 130 feet high. The name … Hermæ given to the places of the obelisks, shew that they were Buddhist, Hermes being Buddha.
The learned Dr. Hager says,* "The number seven seems to have been sacred among the Chaldeans, in the same way as it was afterward among other nations, in honour of the seven planets, over which they believed that seven angels or Cabirian deities, presided; and therefore, they may have built seven towers. In the eighth, says Herodotus, was the temple of Belus. Belus's tower consists of eight stories, a perfect square circuit, 2250 feet.** …
* Diss. Babyl. Bricks, p.27.
** Bombay Transactions, Vol. I. p.137.
The striking similarity between the Meru of India and of Babylon could not escape Mr. Faber, and, to prove the identity of their designs and objects, he has* given a very ingenious paper, which he concludes with the following sentence : "Agreeably to the just opinion of the Hindoo Theologians, the Pyramid on the banks of the Euphrates, an artificial mountain raised in a flat country where there are no natural mountains, was the first erected copy of the holy mount Meru or Ararat." …
* In the Classical Journal, No. XLI.
Meru, as I have already intimated, is the Ararat of the Hindoos. There has been a considerable difference of opinion respecting the precise situation of Ararat. Most persons have placed it in the high land of Armenia, near the fountains of the Euphrates : but some have supposed that it lay in the mountainous country of Cashgar, to the North of India, and that it was a part of that lofty chain of hills which the Greeks called the Indian Caucasus. …
In most countries, there was a sacred mount, an Olympus, an Athos, or Atlas, or Ida, in short, a Meru—and a sacred city. In Egypt, Thebes was the city; and as they could not conveniently have a mount, without, in fact, going out of the valley of the Nile, they had a sacred island, and this was Phylæ or Meroe. The most sacred oath of the Egyptians was, by the bones of Osiris. Buried at Phylæ. And Didorus Siculus says, that when the priests of Phylæ thought proper, they sent a command to the king to put himself to death, with which command he was obliged to comply. The first rulers of nations were Priests , Kings their generals.
In the map to Waddington's Travels, at a considerable distance above Assouan will be found an Argo and a Merawe,* and the author says, "As far as we could judge, from the granite and other sculptures remaining at Argo and Djebel el Berkel, the art (sculpture) seems to have been as well understood, and carried to as high perfection by the sculptors of Meroë, as it was afterward by their scholars at Thebes and at Memphis."** Now I ask any incredulous reader, whether he do not perceive something worthy of notice in a Meru and an Argo being found together in Nubia or Ethiopia ? …
* Mr. Waddington has justly observed, that the accounts of the building of Meroe by Cambyses, as given by Strabo and Diodorus, are not worth notice.
** P. 185.
The Hindoo religion states Mount Meru to be the Garden of Eden or Paradise, out of which went four rivers. These rivers are the Burramputer, or Brahmapouter, the son of Brahma; 2dly, the Ganges, Ganga or river ca‹exochn, female or Goddess Ganges, in fact, a generic name for sacred river; 3dly, the Indus, Sind, the river blue or black; and, 4thly, the Oxus, Gibon, or Djihhoun.
These rivers were also called Chaishu, Bhadra, Sita, and Ganga, in the Hindoo language : …
Josephus knew that the Ganges was the sacred river of the original Ararat or Paradise, and to account for the fact of its being in India, it was feigned to run underground; but can any circumstance tend more to confirm my hypothesis that the mythos is of oriental birth ?
… The circumstance of the Nile having a subterraneous passage to this famous mountain and temple, is exactly parallel to the Ganges and Nile coming to the Ararat of Armenia; …
The following description of the city on Meru is given by the author of Nimrod, with a copy of his plan :—"In the sides of the north," that is, at the North Pole, "according to the fictions of Indian mythology, is the pure and holy land of Ilavratta, and in the centre of that land stands Brahma-puri, the city of the gods, and in the centre of Brahma-puri rises Mount Meru, their Olympus. The forms which have been the subject of our discussion have been curiously combined on this occasion. The land of Ilavratta is a perfect circle, but the city Brahma-puri is a perfect square; and instead of right concentric lines fencing in the central sanctuary, eight circular towers are placed round the wall."*
* Wilford, Asiat. Res. VIII. 285, 376, No. 4, X. 128; Nimrod, Vol. I. p.257.
The author of Nimrod has shewn that Babylon was built with the tower in the middle of it, square, in imitation of Meru, or the Indian city or their Ararat, surrounded by streets, making seven concentric squares of houses, and seven spaces, and twenty-eight principle streets, (like the seven lands and seas of Meru,) and the eighth, the outward fosse or Oceanus.* He has shewn that the tower was formed upon seven towers, one above the other, exactly as the Indian priests taught or imagined that the world was formed of belts of land and sea, step above step to the Meru or North pole, in the centre and at the top. Here appears to be a complete jumble of astronomy and mythology. The seven seas and mount of the north, Isaiah's seat of the gods, were theological, the seven planets astrological, and concealed from the vulgar.
* Vol. I. p.279.
From the supposition that Meru or Ararat stood in the middle of the garden of paradise, came the attachment of all religion to groves or gardens. In imitation of this, the hanging gardens were built at Babylon : rising like the seats of the Amphitheatre at Verona one above another, but oblong in imitation of the elliptic Meru.* These raised-up or hanging gardens round the temple of Belus, no doubt were in analogical imitation of the seven belts of land rising above one another around mount Meru, and of the mystic garden of Paradise. … In or near most cities where the adoration of the Magna Mater prevailed, these gardens are to be found. …
* Vide Nimrod, Vol. I. p.279.
Rome was built upon seven hills, with a capitol or acropolis, which was square, and in other respects was an exact imitation of Babylon. It is worthy of observation that Constantinople also was built, by the Christian Constantine, upon seven hills. These circumstances tend to shew that one secret system was at the bottom of them all. The oriental trinity is found in each of the cities in different ways; but, after the observations on the universal prevalence of the trinity which the reader has already seen, it is unnecessary to add more here. …
… We find as soon as the Greeks became civilized, that their learned men travelled to the East for knowledge, and that they brought back with them the identical philosophical doctrines taught in India from the most remote antiquity : the Metempsychosis and the Trinity for instance. …
… I suspect Olympus, Parnassus, Athos, Ida, Gerizim, and Moriah, were each a Meru or high-place; a sacred place of the same universal primary religion, that of Buddha, of which the same distinctive marks in its stone circles, tumuli, carns, lingas, and Cyclopean buildings, are every where to be found, from India to Stonehenge and Iona. It is very remarkable that on these mountains, either numbers of monks or numerous remains of them are always found. Are these the remains of the colleges of the prophets, named in the Old Testament, remains of Buddhist monks of Thibet, with the tria vota substantialia ? These three vows completely identify them with Christian Monks—Carmelites. Lycurgus is said to have found the poems of Homer, being, as the Rev. G. Townsend describes them,* merely a collection of ballads, with their appropriate titles. In the 5th, 6th, and 7th volumes of the Asiatic Researches, the story of the Trojan war is given from Sanscrit authors : its episodes, like those of Homer, are placed in Egypt : and the traditions of Laius, Labdacus, Œdipus, and Jason, are all found among the same ancient compositions. When, in addition to all this, the fact is considered, that the works of Homer are discovered to contain more than 300 Sanscrit words, the true character of the Iliad will be seen; namely, that it is a sacred poem, made up by Pisistratus, and after him Aristotle, out of a number of ballads relating to the religion of the Indians and Greeks. …
* Class. Journ. No. XLVII. P.9.
The resemblance between the Cristna of Valmic and the Achilles of Homer, proves the identity of the origin of the two mythoses. Each of them, in mythology, is supposed invulnerable, except in the right heel : each was killed by an arrow piercing that part : each was the son of the mother of the God of Love : and the presence of each was indispensable for the overthrow of the enemy.* I can scarcely believe that this identity is accidental.
* Key to Chron. Camb. P.221.
… The name consists of two syllables, Hom and er, or eer, which word, Nimrod says, "is indicative of early or beginning time, whether it be THE OPENING OF A MUNDANE CYCLE, the spring of a year, or the morning of a day."* … I believe with Mr. Bentley or Barnes, it matters not which, that the Iliad is a sacred oriental mythos, accommodated to Grecian circumstances, written, perhaps by a Solomon, though not the Solomon of Jerusalem, and that Homer or Om-eer was a Solomon—if the epithet given to the poem do not mean the poems of Om-heri the Saviour OM. Near Ajemere, in India, is a place called Ummerghur, that is, the walled city of Ummer or Omer. …
* De Genere Homeri, Ed. Barnes, ap. Nimrod, Vol. II. pp. 514, &c.
It seems desirable to know what was the meaning of the name Troy, and the learned Nimrod explains it as follows : "Tr'oia is the triple oia, and ioa means one or unique, so that Tr'oia is three in one, the tripolitan and triunal kingdom. …" Troy meant the country of which Ilium orHlion was the capital. There was a Troy in Egypt built by Semiranis.*
* Asiat. Res. Vol. III. p.454.
… It is very extraordinary, that this paltry town should have interested all mankind. Every nation desired to be believed, that they came from conquered Troy. There was a Troy or Ilion in Phrygia in Asia Minor, one in Epirus, one in Latium, one in Egypt, and one near Venice. Every state almost was founded by its conquered and dispersed refugees. They are found in Epirus, Threspotia, Cyprus, Crete, Venice, Rome, Daunia, Calabria, Sicily, Lisbon, Asturia, Scotland, Wales, Cornwall, Holland, Auvergne, Paris, Sardinia, Cilicia, Pamphylia, Arabia, Macedonia, and Libya. Every people descended from unfortunate Troy. It was a mythos, a sacred history. It was like the ancient history of all nations, a mythos—tons of fable mixed up with some grains of truth. All nations were alike. There were two Moriahs, two Sions, two Ararats, an African and an European Thebes; an Asiatic and Egyptian Babylon; multitudes of Memnoniums, seven cities of Athena, the name of the Goddess, the Magna Mater, the female principle in her warlike form. The Titans fought the Gods ten years; the Sabeans besieged Babylon ten years; Rome besieged Veli, the site of which nobody can find, ten years; Eira in Messenia, and Eiran in Æolia had ten years' wars; and Thebes was besieged by the Epigons for ten years. And all this, grave and wise men call history and believe it true.
How can any one consider these striking circumstances and not see that almost all ancient history and epic poetry are mythological,—the secret doctrines of priests, disguised in parables, in a thousand forms ? Mr. Faber, Mr. Bryant, and Nimrod, have proved this past doubt. … Weak and credulous as man has been, he did not mistake a rotten ship and a few old women for his God and Creator. Under the guise of the ship and old women a system is emblematically described. Our priests have taken the emblems for the reality. The lower orders of our priests are as much the dupes as their votaries. The high-priests are wiser. Our priests will be very angry and deny all this. In all nations, in all times, there has been a secret religion : in all nations and in all times, the fact has been denied.
"There is nothing new under the sun," said the wise Solomon, who never uttered a wiser speech; and in its utterance proved that he understood the doctrines of the eternal renewal of worlds; that new Troys, new Argonauts, would arise, as the Sibyl of Virgil subsequently foretold.
… A learned and ingenious gentleman has written a life of St. Patrick, and Nimrod says, "Firstly, and most obviously, the express tradition that St. Patrick's fosse and purgatory were the fosse and necyia of Ulysses. Ogygia (moreover) was the isle of Calypso, in which Ulysses sojourned : and Plutarch informs us that it was situated five days' sail to the West of Britannia, and that there were three other islands near it. From the South-east of Britain, where the Romans used to land, it would have been a five days' journey to Ireland for ancient navigators. …Ulysses, during his detention in Aiaia, was king of a host of Swine : and Patrick, during a six years captivity in the hands of King Milcho or Malcho, was employed to keep swine. Ulysses flourishes in Babel, and St. Patrick was born at Nem-Turris or the Cœlestial Tower; the type of Babel in Irish mythology is Tory island or the isle of the Tower. … and as Melitus was a considerable haven of Asia Minor in Homer's time, it is the most probable place of Ulysses's departure. But a great consent of tradition brings the colonists of Ireland from Miletus. Miletus, father of Ire, came to Ireland in obedience to a prophecy."* The above is a very small part of the similitudes between Ulysses and St. Patrick; abut it is enough to confirm what I have said in the Celtic Druids, and to blow the whole story of the saint into thin air. I believe that the whole is a Romish fable.
* Nimrod, Vol. II. p.638.
Nimrod* afterward goes on at great length to shew how the story of St. Patrick is accommodated to the ancient Homeric Mythos, and Patricius and the Pateræ to the saint; and he particularly notices a famous ship temple, described by General Vallencey in the Archæologia. Now I think it is quite impossible to date this great stone ship after the rise of Christianity. This at once raises the strongest probability, indeed almost proves, that the stories of Ulysses, King Brute, &c., &c., detailed in the old monkish historians, are not their invention in the dark ages, as they are now considered by all our historians, and as such treated with contempt, but are parts of an universally extended Mythos, brought to the British Isles in much earlier times, and as such in a high degree worthy of careful consideration. The proof of any part of this Mythos having existed in Ireland or Britain before the time of Christ opens the door for the consideration of all the remainder, and is a point of the greatest importance.
* Vol. II. p.637.
VOLUME I - BOOK VII - CHAPTER VII
CASSANDRA—BABYLONIAN MYTHOS—CONSTANTINE AND HELENA. ASTROLOGY—BRYANT ON EARLY HISTORY—NATIVE COUNTRY OF THE OLIVE AND ARARAT
There is existing, in the Greek language, a very dark and obscure poem called Cassandra; purporting to be written by a person name Lycophron, in the time of Ptolomy Philadelphus. It pretends to be chiefly poetical and prophetic effusions delivered by Cassandra, during the Trojan war. For its profound learning it was in the highest estimation with the Greek philosophers. It has been called to scoteinÕn poihma, the dark poem. This may excuse my inability to explain it. But if the reader be satisfied with me that the Iliad is a sacred poem relating in part to the renewal of the Sacrum Sæculum, he will probably think, that the following lines prove that the prophecies of Cassandra relate to the same subject.
But when athwart the empty, vaulted heaven
SIX TIMES of years have roll'd, War shall repose
His lance, obedient to my kinsman's voice,
Who, rich in spoils of monarchs, shall return
With friendly looks, and carolings of love,—
While Peace sits brooding upon the seas and land.
It speaks of the Healing or Saviour God who thus ordained and poured the voice divine (l. 1607); of the impious railers who taunt the God of light, scorning his word, and scoffing at his truth. It calls the different ages Woes.
One Woe is past ! another woe succeeds.
… I shall shew, in the second part of this work, what was the opinion of the authors of the Gospels and Canonical Epistles. The renewal of the Argonautic Expedition is foretold by Lycophron's Cassandra, exactly as it was afterwards made to be foretold in Virgil by his Sibyl.
—Again rush forth the famished wolves, and seize
The fateful fleece, and charm the dragon guard
To sleep; so bids the single-sandall'd king,
Who, to Libystian Colchis, won his way, &c.
In the course of the work she says that the Egyptian Sphynx was black : and, what is very extraordinary, she says the same thing of the White Sow of Alba Longa, calling herKelain¾. Jupiter is called Ethiopian or black. I have no doubt that whatever was meant by the prophecy of Virgil's Sibyl, was meant by Cassandra. Nothing can be more dark and mystical than this poem. But I think its general tendency may perhaps be discovered from detached passages like the above. It speaks of a Budean Queen, and compares her to a dove : dragged like a dove into the vulture's bed. This is an evident allusion to Semiranis, the Dove, and to the Promethean cave.
The author of Nimrod has bestowed almost incredible labour to prove, that the Mythos of the Trojan war, the early history of Rome, &c., &c.; in short, almost all ancient mythology, came from Babylon, and were close copies of the Babylonian history (say, Babylonian mythos). The close similarity between the Gods of India and those of Greece, has been proved over and over by Sir William Jones and others. Then, did they come direct from India ? It is difficult to conceive how that could be effected. Nimrod has untied the knot : for Colonel Wilford has shewn,* that all the Babylonian Mythoses came from India, its Semi-ranis or Sami-Rama-isi, &c., &c. It is evident, therefore, that from India they came to Babylon or Assyria, thence to Syria and Sidon; thence brought by Cadmus or the Orientals to Greece : hence the duplicates and triplicates of the cities, the ten years' wars, &c. And thus at last the grand truth will be established, that they are all mythoses from the East or North-east of the Indus.
* Asiat. Res. Vol. IV. pp. 378, &c.
I have said, that Mr. Faber, Nimrod, and Niebuhr, have proved that all ancient history is little better than fable. This is true. It is all mythological. By this I do not mean to say that there is not some truth in it; but I mean to say, that there is scarcely one history, perhaps not one, which does not contain more religious fable than truth. … They seem to have been a species of religious novels. Even so late as Constantine, Nimrod has pointed out something very suspicious. He says, "It is to me a matter of grave suspicion whether the woman, his mother, was really and by her true name Helena; or whether her name was not purely fictitious, as her parentage from Coil or Uranus, King of Britannia. In the church legend, when she dug and found the true cross, she also found a statue of Venus. A most suspicious legend. Venus was daughter of Coilus, (how, I need not say,) and Helena was Venus."* This, no doubt, is suspicious enough. Alas ! what is to be believed ?
* Nimrod, Vol. III. p.150.
I am quite certain that no one possessing the least candour can deny the mystical character of the story of Helen. Then, what are we to make of it ? Are we to disbelieve the story of the churches built by Helena and Constantine ? If we are to throw this out, what are we to believe ? Where is our incredulity to stop ? But can the existence of the suspicious circumstance be denied ? It surely cannot.
The explanation of the Helena probably is this : it was desired to make out that her son was a renewed incarnation, and therefore he and she adopted the sacred mythical names. He wished to be thought, and perhaps thought himself, the Paraclete prophesied of by Jesus Christ. This will easily account for his hitherto unaccountable mixture of Heathenism and Christianity.
… Without its professors intending to do so perhaps, I believe that judicial astrology has corrupted almost every ancient history which we possess.
Augustus was also a mystical name given their princes by the Egyptians. I suspect Julius was Cæsar's family sacred name, what we call Christian name. Cæsar was a name he assumed as conqueror of Gaul, and Augustus was assumed by his successor as prince of Egypt; but we shall understand this better hereafter.
Sir William Drummond has shewn, that the names of most the places in Joshua are astrological; and General Vallancey has shewn, that Jacob's prophecy is astrological also, and has a direct reference to the Constellations. The particulars may be seen in Ouseley's Orient. Coll.* To this, probably, Jacob referred when he bade his children read in the book of heaven what must be the fate of you and your children.** The meaning of all this is explained by the passage of Virgil, that new wars of Troy and new Argonauts would arise.
* Vol. II. No. IV. pp. 336, &c. ** Ibid. p. 103.
Thucidides, in the beginning of his history, allows, that before the Peloponnesian war, which was waged in the time of Arta-Xerxes and Nehemiah, he could find nothing in which he could place any confidence. This is confirmed by Bochart, in the preface to his Phaleg, and also by Stillingfleet,* and again by Gale.**
* Orig. Sac. Book i. Ch. iv.
** Court. Of Gent. Book iii. Ch. ii.
The following is the state of ancient history given by Mr. Bryant, and nothing can be more true :—"Besides, it is evident that most of the deified personages never existed : but were mere titles of the Deity, the Sun; as has been in a great measure proved by Macrobius. Nor was there ever anything such detriment to ancient history, as the supposing that the Gods of the Gentile world had been natives of the countries where they were worshiped. … It gives one pain to see men of learning and principle, debating which was the Jupiter who lay with Semele, and whether it was the same that outwitted Amphitryon. This is not, says a critic, the Hermes that cut off Argus's head; but one of later date, who turned Battus into a stone. I fancy, says another, that this was done when Io was turned into a cow. … Were it not invidious, I could subjoin names to every articles which I have alleged, and produce numberless instances to the same purpose." Mr. Bryant, after this, goes on to shew that the early fathers believed these Gods to have been men, and then turns the numerous Gods into ridicule; observing, that a God was always ready on every occasion—five Mercuries, four Vulcans, three Dianas, five Dionususes, forty Herculeses, and three hundred Jupiters. …Thus he goes on to shew that the whole, if literally understood, was a mass of falsity and nonsense.
The idea of a reduction of the Western nations to the situations of Tibet, will be turned into ridicule by the priests, who would wish the rest of mankind to believe them to be the most industrious and useful of bees, only working and storing up truths for the good of mankind; but experience shews that they can never be watched too carefully; and if they do not anew establish their empire of the tenth century, to the printing-press alone their failure must be attributed. However amiable in private life many priests may be, there is scarcely one of them who ever loses sight of the aggrandisement of his order. Look at them in Portugal, Spain, and France; look at the wicked and unhallowed exertions of the priests of the Protestant sect in Ireland to oppress the followers of the Romish Church, and to rivet and continue their own usurped power. And however we, the philosourists, may flatter ourselves with the effects of the press, it is yet to be proved that it cannot be rendered subservient to the designs of the order. Though the Protestant and Romish sects are at present in opposition, there is no doubt in my mind, that if government were to hold a just and equal hand to both, they would speedily unite. Then it is much to be feared, that the liberties of Europe would speedily be destroyed.
No doubt the question of the originality of the ancient mythoses is, to the present generation, of the greatest possible importance; as it, in fact, involves the existence of a most terrific system of priest-craft and priest-rule—a system most dangerous to the well-being of all mankind, except the favoured caste—a system which cannot stand still, but which must either soon fall or go on increasing in power till it reduces the remainder of the world to the situation of its parent in Tibet. To resist successfully the artful sophistry of the able men among the priests is a task of the greatest difficulty. …
VOLUME I - BOOK VII - CHAPTER VIII
ROME—IMAGES NOT ANCIENTLY USED. ORIGIN OF THE NAME ROMA—LABYRINTH—OBSERVATIONS ON PROPER NAMES—HERO GODS ACCOUNTED FOR—SELEUCUS NICATOR ANTICHRIST—GENERAL OBSERVATIONS—YAVANAS EXPELLED FROM THE TOWNS THEY BUILT
A great number of curious circumstances are known respecting the city of Rome—the eternal city, which convince me that it was a place of very great consequence, and closely connected with the universal mythos which I am endeavouring to develope, long before the time usually allotted to Romulus and the wolf. The following particulars extracted from the work of Nimrod are very striking : "I cannot help suspecting that Roma was, when occupied by the predecessors of the Tusci and the Ombri, called Rama. Rome herself was supposed by many authors* to have been a city of the Etrurians, during the time anterior to its foundation in the year B.C. 752, … "
* Dion, Hal. Arch. Rom. I. Cap. xxix.
… Nimrod observes …,* "Dr. Ferguson had omitted to notice one remarkable passage of Lanctatius, which shews that the sewers were in existence before the time of Romulus, and an object of ignorant veneration to that founder and his colleagues. … Yet we are to believe, that they were made by the fourth king after Romulus." After this Nimrod goes on to shew what is extremely probable, that the first Roma, which would probably be the Roma or Rama of the Ombri, or Osci, was destroyed by a natural convulsion, a volcano.
* Vol. III. p.76.
… The Greeks also, namely Lycophron and Aristotle, state, that there was a city in old time before that of Romulus, called Roma orRèmh.*
* Niebuhr's Rom. Hist. Vol. I. p.151.
If I prove that the early Roman history is a mythos, I open the door to very latitudinarian researches to discover its origin. And for the proof that it is so, I am quite satisfied to depend upon what Niebuhr has said, supported by numerous facts pointed out by Nimrod. Taking Valentia and Roma to be the same, we find them in England, in Ireland, in Spain, in Italy, in Phrygia, in Syria, (as Rama,) and in India. …
Numa expressly forbade the Romans to have any representation of God in the form of a man or beast, nor was there any such thing among them for the first 170 years. And Plutarch adds to this, that they were Pythagoreans, and shed no blood in their sacrifices, but confined them to flour and wine. Here is the sacrifice of Melchizedek again; the Buddhist or Mithraitic sacrifice, which I have no doubt extended over the whole world.* In the rites of Numa we have also the sacred fire of the Irish St. Bridget, of Moses, of Mithra, and of India, accompanied with an establishment of Nuns or Vestal virgins. Plutarch informs us, that May was called from the mother of Mercury, and that in the time of Numa the year consisted of 360 days.**
* Vide Plut. Life of Numa. ** Ibid.
The Abbé Dubois states, that the Hindoos in the earliest times had no images. As we have found that this was the case in most other nations it was to be expected that it would be the same in India.
The ancients had a very curious kind of building, generally subterraneous, called a labyrinth. The remains of this are found in Wales, where the boys yet amuse themselves with cutting out SEVEN inclosures in the sward, which they call the city Troy. … Pliny names it,* and his description agrees with the Welsh plan.** This, at first sight, apparently trifling thing, is of the very first importance : because it proves that the tradition respecting Troy, &c., found in the British Isles, were not the produce of monkery in the middle ages, but existed in them long before.
* XXXVI. Cap. xix. Sect. ii.
** Nimrod, Vol. I. p.319.
The Roman boys were also taught a mazy or complicated dance, called both the Pyrrhic wardance, and the dance of the city Troy. … The Cloacæ Maximæ, under the city of Rome, have by some been thought to be a labyrinth. … The sacred mazy dance was to imitate the complicated motions of the planets,—was in honour of the Gods—that is, of the disposers : in short, it had the same object as the labyrinth.
The Roman circus was an allegory corresponding to the labyrinth, as the author of Nimrod supposes. The circuits were seven, saith Laurentius Lydus, because the planets are so many. …
In the isle of Lemnos there was a labyrinth of which some remains existed in the time of Pliny. It is very remarkable for having been surrounded with 150 columns, which were revolving cylinders, so movable that a child could spin them round. These are evidently what we call rocking-stones.* The maze of complicated circles near Botallek, in Cornwall, described in plate No. 29 of my Celtic Druids, was also, in some way, allusive to the planetary motions. The labyrinth of the Fair Rosamond could be nothing but an astrological emblem, allusive to the planets.
* The Asphodel was called by Theophrastus the Epimenidian plant. The name As-phod-el is the Asian God Phod or Buddha, whose name rings every change upon the vowels, and upon the two variable consonants B. F. P. V. and D. T. Th. Nimrod, sup. Ed. p.18. This was the plant used to move the celebrated Gigonian rocking-stone, (which I have noticed in my Celtic Druids,) which stood near the Pillars of Hercules, not far from the Straits of Gibraltar.
There are also histories of labyrinths in Egypt, seen by Herodotus; in Andeira; at the Lake of Van; Præneste, &c. The etymology of the word labyrinth in unknown, therefore probably Hindoo or Oriental; but Nimrod has some interesting speculations concerning it. From its form exactly corresponding to the sacred mount, &c., of India, and of the cities formed after its patterns, they probably were meant to be in one sense representations of the paradise, &c., in inferis, as we know these sacred matters on earth were supposed to be exactly imitated in the Elysian regions.
I have before observed, that each city had its ten years' war, its conquest and dispersion, I therefore need not here repeat them.
… The history of every ancient state was a mythos : with such trifling variation as change of place and change of time produced, they were all the same. …
The districts of Canaan appear to have been allotted or divided according to astronomical or astrological rules, in the same manner as was practised with the nomes of Egypt. The tenth chapter of Genesis is an example of the same kind—a division of the world into seventy-two countries or nations, under the mask of a genealogy. Every chapter of Genesis exhibits an esoteric and an exoteric religion. The same person named in the tenth chapter of Genesis are found in Ezekiel, and also in Job—a sacred book of the Jews, in which the destroyer makes a great figure.
The account which is constantly given of the attempt of Alexander and others to declare themselves Gods, has never been satisfactory to me. With Christian priests it has always been a favourite theme, and if they have not striven to disguise the truth, we may safely say they have not taken much pains to discover or explain it. I have shewn, that in the latter times of the Roman republic an eminent person to be a general benefactor of mankind was expected to arrive along with a new and more happy sæculum.* This was the renewal either of the Neros or of the cycle of 608—THS. On the beginning of every one of these new ages a person of great merit was supposed to come, endowed with a portion of the Divine Spirit, of the ¡gion pneuma or the Erwj, which was the protogenos or first-begotten of the Supreme Being. It was correctly the new incarnation of the mythologies of India. It was correctly the Christian inspiration. The Supreme First Cause was generally believed to overshadow, or, in some mysterious manner, to impregnate the mother of the favoured person, by which she became pregnant. … Plato and Pythagoras, among the Gentiles, were both examples of eminent men supposed to be the produce of divine influence or inspiration, as I have shewn in B. IV. Ch. II. Sect. 6. Their mothers were believed to have been overshadowed or obumbrated by an Apolloniacal spectre, to have been afflata numine filled with the (&9 :98 qds ruh, and to have produced their respective sons without connexion with man. This, in fact, was correctly Hindoo incarnation. All the extraordinary births in the two Testaments, such as those of Samson, Samuel, John Baptist, &c., were examples of the same kind.
* This cycle was what the Romans called sæculum, at the end of which the Ludi Sæculares were celebrated—when black victims were sacrificed. These sacred and unascertained periods were professed to be known only to the keepers of the Sibylline books, from which they were learnt. Nimrod, Vol. III. p.191.
Persons wishing to obtain power often attempted to induce a belief that they were the effects of this kind of divine interference. This was the case with Alexander the Great, … Augustus Cæsar … Scipio Africanus … In the same manner Anna, the mother of the Virgin Mary, was said, in one of the spurious Gospel-histories, to have been impregnated, when an infant of only three or four years old, by the Holy Ghost, in the form of a serpent, creeping over her body when asleep; the produce of which was Mary, the mother of Jesus. And as Jesus was in like manner the produce of the Holy Ghost, they declared Mary to be both the mother and daughter of God. The serpent was the emblem of divine wisdom equally in India, Egypt, and Greece.
Perhaps in ancient times there never was a more remarkable example of this superstition than that of Seleucus Nicator, who founded the city of Antioch, which was finished by Antiochus, who was called EPIPHANES, perhaps on that account. The original name of this city, situated on the Orontes, was Iona or Iopolis, the city of Io, the beeve Ie. … The name of the kings of Antioch sufficiently explain the fact. The first was called Soter or the Saviour; the second, Theos or the Holy, or the God; the third, who finished the city, Epiphanes, or the Manifestation of the Deity to the Gentiles. … The Christians are said to have received the name of Christian at Antioch. At first they were every where considered by the Gentiles as Jews, as they really were, and the God of Seleucus was called Antichrist by the Jews. This would be in the Greek language Anti Cfhjoj, or an opponent or second Cfhjoj, meaning against the good or holy one, the holy one of Israel, and this would cause the Christians, the servants of the God of the Jews, to call themselves followers of the Crhjoj, or of the good dæmon, the opposite of Antichrist. And from this it was, that Theodoret and other fathers maintained that the city of Antioch was a type of Antichrist. The Antichristian antioch, Anti-christian before the birth of Christ, unravels the mystery. Nimrod has most clearly proved, that the Seleucidæ meant to convert the city of Antioch into a sacred place, and to found their empire upon a close connexion between church and state :* but he has not observed that Buddha and the grand Lama of Tibet were their model.** The grand Lama, successor of Buddha, was at the time probably an efficient monarch, and not reduced to the inanity of the present one by the priests. Jerusalem was set up by the Antichrist David, as the Samaritans would call him, in opposition to the old worship on Gerizim,*** and Antioch was the same, in opposition to Jerusalem. Thus we discover the origin of the Antichrist, with whom modern Christians have so long amused or tormented themselves. … Another reason why they called Antioch by the name of Antichrist was, because the king of it usurped the name of Epiphanes, or the manifestation of God to the Gentiles, which belonged only to their God. Notwithstanding the destruction of the books at Antioch, under the superintendence of the Apostles, and of the Christian priests, systematically continued to the present day in all other countries, enough has escaped to prove it was the doctrine of the ancient religion, that a saviour should come at the end of the Sæculum.
* As all politic modern kings do. ** The Jupiter Bottius proves this.
*** According to the first religion of Moses, Gerizim, not Jerusalem, was the place chosen by God to place his altars there. The text of Joshua contains satisfactory, internal proof of its corruption by the Jews to favour the claim of Jerusalem, as is admitted by the first Protestant divines.
Link to Volume I - Book VIII.