« PreviousContinue »
And thus the sweet deluders tune their song.
The apostle doth plainly intimate, that the old
Pope. world was subject to perish by a deluge, as this is subFor when our poor deluded people at home, and ject to perish by confiagration. Burnet's Theory. fereigners abroad, read the poisonous and inflamma
At length corruption, like a general flood, ter; libels that are daily published with impunity
Shall deluge all.
Pope. they act accordingly.
Still the battering waves rush in Where wavering man, betrayed by venturous pride
Implacable, till deluged by the foam, To chase the dreary paths without a guide,
The ship sinks, foundering in the vast abyss.
Philips. As treacherous phantoms in the mist delude, Sbuns fancied ills, or chases airy good.
The restless flood the land would overflow, Johnson. Vanity of Human Wishes. By which the deluged earth would useless grow.
Blackmore. DELVE, v. a. & n. s.? Sax, delfan; Teut.
DELUGE. De'LVER, n. s. 3 delben ; Belgic delven;
Several deluges are recorded in Goth. delf
, a subterranean place. Screnius re- history; as that of Ogyges, which overflowed fers to this last as the origin of the Saxon be. almost all Attica; and that of Deucalion, which delfan, to bury; and Wiclif confirms this drowned all Thessaly in Greece: the most memoetymology by using dalf for delve. See below. rable however was the universal deluge or Noah's To dig, and, figuratively, to endeavour to fathom flood, which overflowed and destroyed the whole the mind. It is used as a substantive by Spenser earth; and from which only Noah, and those and Jonson, for the pit or place dug: 'a delver with him in the ark, escaped. See AntEDILUis a digger.
VIAN, an article in which we have entered into
this subject at some length, and particularly its But be that hadde taken oon ghede forthe and dalf epoch. See also CHRONOLOGY. into the earthe : and hidde the money of his Lord. But the deluge is a topic of great interest both
Wiclif. Matt. xxv. to science and religion. It has given birth, thereWhen Adam delred, and Eve span,
fore, to various theories and controversies on Who was then the Gentleman ? Old Ballad. every point connected with it; and, while we He by and by
cannot devote much space to the review of them His feeble feet directed to the cry;
in this work, some of the principal considerations Wbich to that shady delve him brought at last, that have been offered respecting its causes and Where Mammon erst did sun his treasury. effects may be acceptable to the reader. The
great points in question may be reduced to three It shall go hard,
1. Was the deluge universal, as is commonly But I will delce one yard below the mines,
supposed, or partial ? 2. Was it from natural And blow them at the inoon. Shakspeare.
agency only, and if so what natural agency effected What's his name and birth?
this mighty convulsion ? 3. What were the -I cannot delce him to the root : his father
principal effects and changes resulting? Was called Sicilius.
1. Isaac Vossius and bishop Stillingfleet are Such a light and mettled dance
amongst the most respectable supporters of an Say you never yet in France;
opinion that the deluge was but partial. But And by leadmen, for the nonce,
the reasoning of the former upon this subject is That turo round like grindle-stones,
a little involved in our second question, respectWhich they dig out fro' the
ing the agency employed; for it rests partly upon For their bairns' bread, wives, and selves. the difficulty there must have been in effecting a
universal deluge. “Many miracles,' he says, Delte of convenient depth your thrashing floor, 'must have concurred; but God works no miraWith tempered clay, then fill and face it o'er. cles in vain. What need was there to drown
Dryden. those lands where no men lived, or are yet to be The filthy swine with delving snout
found ? Although we should believe that part The rooted forest undermine.
Philips. of the earth only to have been overflowed by the DELVINO, one of the principal towns o
of waters which we have mentioned, and which is Lower Albania, between Joannina and Butrinto. not the hundredth part of the terrestrial globe, It stands on the side of a mountain, on the site the deluge will nevertheless be universal (@cuof the ancient Eleus, between the Paria, or an- menical), since the destruction was universal, and cient Xanthus, and Pistrini; and is well de overwhelmed the whole habitable world.” Bishop tended by a castle. Population 8000. It is Stillingfleet adopted the same opinion, from a fifty miles E. N. E. of Larissa.
persuasion that the earth was by no means fully DE LUGE, n. s.
Fr. deluge ; Span. Ital. and peopled, and therefore there was no necessity for Portug. diluvio ; Lat. diluvium, from diluo, de
the deluge being universal. 'I cannot,' says he, and luo; Gr. Avw, to wash.
see any urgent necessity from the Scripture to
assert that the flood did spread itself all over the If there had not been so deep a deluge of sin, tnere surface of the earth. That all mankind, those in had been none of the waters.
the ark excepted, were destroyed by it, is most Bishop Hall Contemplations. certain according to Scripture. When the Lord But if with bays and dams they strive to force
said that he would destroy man from the face of His channel to a new or narrow course,
the earth, it could not be any particular deluge of No longer then within his banks he dwells,
so small a country as Palestine, as some have First na torrent, then a deluge, swells. Denham. ridiculously imagined; for we find a universal
corruption in the earth mentioned as the cause; that all the ancient nations regarded him as their a universal threatening upon all men for this founder; and that he, his sons, and the first cause; and afterwards a universal destruction patriarchs, are alluded to, in most if not all the expressed as the effect of this flood. So then it religious ceremonies. The Egyptian Osiris (he is evident that the flood was universal with regard says) was the same with Ham the son of Noah ; to mankind; but from thence follows no neces- though the name was sometimes bestowed on sity at all of asserting the universality of it as to Noah himself. Osiris, according to Diodorus the globe of the earth, unless it be sufficiently Siculus, was wonderfully preserved in an ark, proved; and what reason can there be to extend and taught the use of the vine; to build, plant, the flood beyond the occasion of it, which was the &c. “We may reasonably suppose,' says Mr. corruption of mankind? The only probability of Bryant, “that the particulars of this extraordinary asserting the universality of the flood, as to the event would be gratefully commemorated by the globe of the earth, is from the destruction of all patriarch himself, and transmitted to every branch living creatures, together with man. Now though of his family; that they were made the subject men might not have spread themselves over the of domestic converse, where the history was whole surface of the earth, yet beasts and creep- often renewed, and ever attended with a reveing things might, which were destroyed with the rential awe and horror, especially in those who flood; for it is said that “all flesh died that had been witnesses to the calamity, and had moved upon the earth, and every man.' To what experienced the hand of Providence in their end should there be not only a note of universality favor. When there was a falling off from the added, but such a particular enumeration of the truth, we might farther expect, that a person of so several kinds of beasts, creeping things, and fowls, high a character as Noah, so particularly disif they were not all destroyed ? To this I answer; tinguished by the Deity, could not fail of being I grant that, as far as the flood extended, all these reverenced by his posterity; and, when idolatry were destroyed; but see no reason to extend the prevailed, that he would be one of the first destruction of these beyond that compass and among the sons of men to whom divine honors space of the earth where men inhabited, because would be paid. Lastly, we might conclude, that the punishment upon the beasts was occasioned these memorials would be interwoven in the by, and could not be concomitant with the de- mythology of the Gentile world; and that there struction of man; but (the occasion of the deluge would be continual allusions to these ancient being the sin of man, who was punished in the occurrences, in the rites and mysteries as they beasts that were destroyed for his sake, as well as were practised by the nations of the earth. In in himself) where the occasion was not, as conformity to these suppositions, I shall endeawhere there were animals and no men, there vor to show that these things did happen; that
no necessity of extending the flood the history of the deluge was religiously prethither.'
served in the first ages; that every circumstance The bishop, therefore, thinks it probable that of it is to be met with among the historians and this visitation of divine judgment extended mythologists of different countries, and traces of only to the continent of Asia, and those animals it are to be found particularly in the sacred rites only which were immediately connected with of Egypt and of Greece.' mankind; and he thinks the latter a sufficient If the success of this author, in this great reason for Noah's preserving the pairs of animals undertaking, was not complete; if his theories which he was commanded to take with him into involve many doubtful points of history, and the ark. But it is shown, under the article An- some altogether conjectural assumptions ; he emTEDILUVIAN, that, according to the most moderate bodies on the other hand many unquestionably incomputations, the world was probably more full teresting and important facts, connected with this of inhabitants than at present; the expression of subject, and which the reader who is desirous of Scripture is strong, that the earth was filled a complete review of it should not overlook. with violence:' and if it were admitted that the Of Noah, he says, they styled him Prometheus, earth' means only continental Asia, the supposi- Deucalion, Atlas, Theuth, Zuth, Xuthus, Ination of a partial deluge involves almost all the chus, Osiris. When there began to be a tendendifficulties, with regard to the agency employed, cy towards idolatry, and the adoration of the that are supposed to be connected with that of á sun was introduced by the posterity of Ham, the universal one. If the tops of the highest moun- title of Helius, among others, was conferred upon tains, in a very considerable part of the earth, him. Noah was the original Zeus and Dios. were covered, the laws of gravity would carry He was the planter of the vine, and inventor of the water that must have been thus elevated over fermented liquors : whence he was denominated all the ordinary habitations of men, or it would Zeuth, which signifies ferment, rendered Zeus by require a miracle to suspend their operation. the Greeks. He was also called Dionusus, inWe shall see that nothing strictly miraculous is terpreted by the Latins Bacchus, but very imsupposed on our hypothesis of a universal de- properly. "Bacchus was Chus the grandson of luge.
Noah; as Ammon may be esteemed Ham, so Mr. Bryant, in his Ancient Mythology, adverts much reverenced by the Egyptians. Among the at great length to the traditional traces of the people of the east, the true name of the patriarch act of a universal deluge in all the early fables was preserved ; they called him Noas, Naus, and histories of the heathen world. lle even and sometimes contracted Nous; and many contends that this fact furnished the principal, places of sanctity, as well as rivers, were denoif not the only foundation of ancient idolatry; minated from him. Anaxagoras of Clazomenæ that ti'e first of all the heathen deities was Noah ; had obtained some knowledge of him in Egypt.
By him the patriarch was denominated Noas or sented allegorically as a state of death. He then Nous; and both he and his disciples were sen obtains a new life, which is called a second birth; sible that this was a foreign appellation; not- and is said to have his youth renewed. He is, withstaoding which he has acted as if it had on this account, looked upon as the first born of been a term of the Greek language. Eusebius mankind ; and both his antediluvian and postdiinforms us, that the disciples of Anaxagoras say, luvian states are commemorated, and sometimes " that Nous is by interpretation, of the deity the intermediate state is also spoken of. DioDis or Dios; and they likewise esteem Nous the dorus calls him Deucalion; but describes the same as Prometheus, because he was the re- deluge as almost universal.' We have noticed the newer of mankind, and was said to have fashion- corresponding Chaldean tradition, &c. mentioned ed them again,' after they had been in a manner by Berosus in the article ANTEDILUVIANS. extinct. Suidas has preserved, from some an While we consider the further range of these tracient author, a curious memorial of this won- ditional accounts of the flood over the continent derful personage, whom he affects to distinguish of India, and as far as China, has also its weight from Deucalion, and styles Nannacus. Accord. in establishing the Mosaic accounts, we shall ing to him, this Nannacus was a person of great shortly advert to the present and permanent efantiquity, and prior to the time of Deucalion. fects of such a visitation, now remaining, as He is said to have been a king, who, foreseeing another proof both of the fact of a deluge, and the approaching deluge, collected every body of its universality. At present we enquire : together, and led them to a temple, where he 2. What was the nature of the agency employed on offered up his prayers for them, accompanied this occasion ? Dr. Thomas Burnet, in his Telluris with many tears. Other well known traditions, Theoria Sacra, endeavours to show, that all the mentioned by Stephenson, speak of the flood of waters in the ocean are not sufficient to cover the Deucalion in which all mankind were destroyed. earth to the depth assigned by Moses. SupAfterwards, when the surface of the earth began posing the sea drained quite dry, and all the to be again dry, Zeus ordered Prometheus and clouds of the atmosphere dissolved into rain, we Minerva to make images of clay in the form of should still want the greatest part of the water men; and, when they were finished, he called of a deluge. According to the Dr. no less than the winds, and made them breathe into each, and eight oceans would have been requisite. To get rendered them vital. From these accounts, Mr. clear of this difficulty, he and others have Bryant concludes: 'However the story may have adopted Descartes's theory. That philosopher been varied, the principal outlines plainly point will have the antediluvian world to have been out the person who is alluded to in these histories. perfectly round and equal, without mountains It is, I think, manifest, that Annacus, and Nan- or valleys. He accounts for its formation on nacus, and even Inachus, relate to Noachus or mechanical principles, by supposing it at first in Noah. And not only these, but the histories of the condition of a thick turbid fluid replete with Deacalion and Prometheus have a like reference divers heterogeneous matters; which, subsiding to the patriarch: in the 600th year, and not the by slow degrees, formed themselves into different 300th, of whose life the waters prevailed upon concentric strata, or beds, by the laws of gravity. the earth. He was the father of mankind, who Dr. Burnet improves on this theory, by supwere renewed in him. llence he is represented posing the primitive earth to have been no more by another author, under the character of Pro- than a crust investing the water contained in the metheus
, as a great artist, by whom men were ocean, and in the central abyss, which he and forned anew, and were instructed in all that was others suppose to exist in the bowels of the good. He seems in the east to have been called earth. See Abyss. At the time of the flood, Noas, Noasis, Nasus, and Nus; and by the this outward crust broke in a thousand places; Greeks his name was compounded Dionusus. and sunk down among the water, which thus The Amonians, wherever they came, founded spouted up in vast cataracts, and overflowed the cities to his honor; hence places called Nusa whole surface. He supposes also, that before often occur, and many of them are mentioned by the flood there was a perfect coincidence of the ancient authors. These, though widely distant, equator with the ecliptic, and consequently that being situated in countries far removed, yet re- the antediluvian world enjoyed a perpetual tained the same original histories; and were ge- spring; but that the violence of the shock, by nerally famous for the plantation of the vine. which the outer crust was broken, shifted also Disled by this similarity of traditions, people in the position of the earth, and produced the preafter times imagined that Dionusus must neces sent obliquity of the ecliptic. This theory is not sarily have been where his history occurred; and only equally arbitrary with the former, but dias it was the turn of the Greeks to place every rectly contrary to the words of Moses, who asthing to the account of conquest, they made sures us, that all the high hills were covered ; him a great conqueror, who went over the face while Burnet affirms that there were no hills of the whole earth, and taught mankind the then in being. Dr. Hook conjectured that the plantation of the vine. Though the patriarch is shell of earth was subjected at the deluge to a represented under various titles, and even these compression into a prolate spheroid, thereby not always uniformly appropriated; yet there pressing out the water of an abyss under the continually occur such peculiar circumstances of earth. "Dr. Halley ascribes the deluge to the bis history, as plainly point out the person re- shock of a comet, whereby the polar and diurnal ferred to. The person preserved is always men- rotation of the globe was changed ; and the intioned as preserved in an ark. He is described genious Whiston so far adopted and improved as bei ag in a state of darkness, which is repre- upon this hypothesis, that he published à tract
on the subject entitled, The Cause of the Deluge make all reasonable allowances, however, we demonstrated.
shall suppose the whole solid matter in the globe The theories above enumerated, though sanc to be only equal to a cube of 5000 miles; and tioned by those names which entitled them to even on this supposition we shall find, that all our notice, are, we conceive, one and all, desti- the waters of the deluge would not be half suftute of any thing amounting to proof. The fol- ficient to moisten it. The above-mentioned lowing, which endeavours to account for this parallelopiped of water would indeed contain most remarkable event, without doing any vio- 798,050,368 cubic miles of that fluid; but the lence to the established laws of nature, is the cube of earth containing no less than 125,000 hypothesis, we believe, of a Mr. James Tytler, a millions of cubic miles, it is evident that the chemist of Edinburgh, who contributed largely quantity assigned for the deluge would be scarcely to the Encyclopædia Britannica, from which known to moisten it. It could have indeed no work we make the extract.
more effect this way, than a single pound of 1. “If we consider the quantity of water requi- water could have upon 150 times its bulk of dry site for the purpose of the deluge, it will not earth. We are persuaded, therefore, that any appear so very extraordinary as has been com- person who will try by experiment how much monly represented. The height of the highest water a given quantity of earth contains, and hills is thought not to be quite four miles. It from that experiment will make calculations with will therefore be deemed a sufficient allowance, regard to the whole quantity of water contained when we suppose the waters of the deluge to in the bowels of the earth, 'must be abundantly have been four miles deep on the surface of the satisfied, that though all the water of the deluge ground. Now it is certain, that water, or any had been thence derived, the diminution of the other matter, when spread out at large upon the general store would, comparatively speaking, ground, seems to occupy an immense space in have been next to nothing. 2. It was not from comparison of what it does when contained in a the bowels of the earth only that the waters were cubical vessel, or when packed together in a discharged, but also from the air; for we are cubical form. Suppose we wanted to overflow assured by Moses, that it rained forty days and a room sixteen feet every way, or containing forty nights. This source of the diluvian waters 258 square feet, with water, to the height of one has been considered as of small consequence by foot, it may be nearly done by a cubical vessel of almost every one who has treated on the subject. six feet filled with water. A cube of eight feet We shall transcribe the general opinion from the will cover it two feet deep, and a cube of ten feet Universal History, Vol. I, where it is very fully will very nearly cover it four feet deep. It expressed. According to the observations made makes not the least difference whether we sup- of the quantity of water that falls in rain, the pose feet or miles to be covered. A cube of ten rains could not afford one ocean, nor half an miles of water would very nearly overflow 256 ocean, and would be a very inconsiderable part square miles of plain ground to the height of of what was necessary for a deluge. If it rained four miles. But if we take into our account the forty days and forty nights throughout the whole vast number of eminences with which the surface earth at once, it might be sufficient to lay all the of the earth abounds, the above-mentioned quan- lower grounds under water, but it would signify tity of water would do a great deal more. If, very little as to the overflowing of the mountains; therefore, we attempt to calculate the quantity so that it has been said, that if the deluge had of water sufficient to deluge the earth, we must been made by rains only, there would have make a very considerable allowance for the bulk needed not forty days, but forty years, to have of all the hills on its surface. To consider this brought it to pass. And if we suppose the whole matter, however, in its utmost latitude: the sur- atmosphere condensed into water, it would not face of the earth is supposed, by the latest com- all have been sufficient for this effect; for it is putations, to contain 199,512,595 square miles. certain, that it could not have risen above thirtyTo overflow tnis surface to the height of four two feet, the height to which water can be raised miles, is required a parallelopiped of water six- by the pressure of the atmosphere; for the weight teen miles deep, and containing 49,878,148 of the whole air, when condensed into water, can square miles of surface. Now, considering the be no more than equal to its weight in its natural immense thickness of the globe of the earth, it state, and must become no less than 800 times can by no means be improbable, that this whole denser; for that is the difference between the quantity of water may be contained in its bowels, weight of the heaviest air and that of water.' without the necessity of any remarkable abyss or On this subject we must observe, that there is a huge collection of water, such as most of our very general mistake with regard to the air, simitheorists suppose to exist in the centre. It is lar to the above-mentioned one regarding the certain, that as far as the earth has been dug, it earth. Because the earth below our feet appears has been found not dry, but moist; nor have we to our senses firm and compact, therefore the the least reason to imagine that it is not, at least, vast quantity of water, contained even in the equally moist all the way down to the centre. most solid parts of it, and which will readily How moist it really is cannot be known, nor the appear on proper experiment, is overlooked, and quantity of water requisite to impart to it the treated as a non-entity. In like manner, because degree of moisture it has; but we are sure it the air does not always deluge with excessive must be immense. The earth is computed to be rains, it is also imagined that it contains but very nearly 8000 miles in diameter. The ocean is of little water. Because the pressure of the air is an unfathomable depth; but there is no reason able to raise only. thirty-two of water on the for supposing it more than a few miles. To surface of the earth, it is therefore supposed we
may know to what depth the atmosphere could kind of omnipotence. The agen. we mean is deluze the earth, if it was to let fall the whole electricity. It is certain, that, by means of it, water contained in it. But daily observations immense quantities of water can be raised to a show, that the pressure of the atmosphere has great height in the air. This is proved by the not the least connexion with the quantity of phenomena of water-spouts. Mr. Forster relates, water it contains. Nay, if there is any connex- that he happened to see one break very near him, ion, the air seems to be lightest when it contains and observed a flash of lightning proceed from it most water. In the course of a long summer's at the moment of its breaking. The conclusion drought, for instance, the mercury in the baro- from this is obvious. When the electric matter meter will stand at thirty inches, or little more. was discharged from the water, it could no lonIf it does so at the beginning of the drought, it ger be supported by the atmosphere but immediought to ascend continually during the time the ately fell down. Though water-spouts do not dry weather continues; because the air all the often appear in this country, yet every one must while is absorbing water in great quantity from have made an observation somewhat similar to the surface of the earth and sea. This, however, Mr. Forster's. In a violent storm of thunder is known to be contrary to fact. At such times and rain after every flash of lightning, or disthe mercury does not ascend, but remains station- charge of electricity from the clouds, the rain ary; and what is still more extraordinary, when pours down with increased violence; thus showthe drought is about to have an end, the air, ing that the cloud, having parted with so much while it yet contains the whole quantity of water of its electricity, cannot longer be supported in it absorbed, and has not discharged one single the form of vapor, but must descend in rain. drop, becomes suddenly lighter, and the mercury It is not, indeed, yet discovered that electricity will perhaps sink an inch before any rain falls. is the cause of the suspension of water in the The most surprising phenomenon, however, is atmosphere; but it is certain that evaporation is yet to come. After the atmosphere has been dis- promoted by electrifying the fluid to be evapocharging for a number of days successively a rated. It may therefore be admitted, as a possiquantity of matter 800 times heavier than itself
, bility, that the electric fluid contained in the air instead of being lightened by the discharge, it is the agent by which it is enabled to suspend becomes heavier, nay, specifically heavier than it the water which rises in vapor. If, therefore, was before. It is also certain, that very dry air, the air is deprived of the due proportion of this provided that it is not at the same time very hot, fluid, it is evident that rain must fall in prodiis always heaviest; and the driest air which we gious quantities. Again: we are assured from are acquainted with, namely, Dr. Priestley's the most undeniable observations, that electricity depblogisticated air, is considerably heavier than is able to swell up water on the surface of the the air we commonly breathe. For these reasons earth. This we can make it do even in our we think the quantity of water contained in the trifling experiments; and much more must the whole atmosphere ought to be considered as whole force of the fluid be supposed capable of indefinite, especially as we know that by what- doing it, if applied to the waters of the ocean, or ever agent it is suspended, that agent must any others. The agitation of the sea in earthcounteract the force of gravity, otherwise the quakes is a sufficient proof of this. It is certain, water would immediately descend; and while the that at these times there is a discharge of a vast force of gravity in any substance is counteracted, quantity of electric matter from the earth into that substance cannot appear to us to gravitate at the air; and, as soon as this happens, all becomes all. 3. The above considerations render it pro- quiet on the surface of the earth. From a multable, at least, that there is in nature a quantity titude of observations it also appears, that there of water sufficient to deluge the world, provided is at all times a passage of electric matter from it was applied to the purpose. We must next the atmosphere into the earth, and vice versa Consider whether there is any natural agent from the earth into the atmosphere. There is, powerful enough to effect this purpose. We therefore, no absurdity in supposing the Deity shall take the phrases used by Moses in their to have influenced the action of the natural most obvious sense. The breaking up of the powers in such a manner that for forty days and fountains of the deep we may reasonably sup- nights the electric matter contained in the atmospose to have been the opening of all the passages, phere should descend into the bowels of the whether small or great, through which the sub- earth; if, indeed, there is occasion for supposing terraneous waters possibly could discharge them- any such immediate influence at all, since it is selves on the surface of the earth. The opening not impossible that there might have been, of the windows of heaven we may also suppose from some natural cause, a descent of this matter to be the pouring out the water contained in the from the atmosphere for that time. But by atmosphere through those invisible passages by whatever cause the descent was occasioned, the which it enters in such a manner as totally to consequence would be, the breaking up of the
Every one of our senses, as when water is fountains of the deep, and the opening of the absorbed by the air in evaporation. As both windows of heaven. The water contained in the these are said to have been opened at the same atmosphere being left without support, would time, it seems from thence probable, that one descend in impetuous rains; while the waters of natural agent was employed to do both. Now it the ocean, those from which fountains originate, is certain, that the industry of modern enquirers and those contained in the solid earth itself, has discovered an agent unknown to the former would rise from the very centre, and meet the ages, and whose influence is so great, that with waters which descended from above. Thus the Tegarc to this world it may be said to have a breaking up of the fountains of the deep, and