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while the celebrated wall, which was constructed as a defence, and placed as an eastern barrier to the whole of that land, extending from Pelusium to the cataracts of Philoë, of which the remains are still to be seen in Egypt, was actually, as is expressed, "from the sea." Ethiopia and Egypt were, indeed, the strength of "No;" and this, too, according to every testimony, was infinite. Yet this Hecatompylon of the poets,* and Diospolis of the historians,† so pre-eminent for its antiquity, and so renowned for its colossal splendour, was literally carried away, and went into captivity, when her temples were violated, her altars overturned, her defenceless children slain, and the great and the honourable among her leaders bound and made captive by their Eastern conquerors.
Nineveh is said to have been surrounded by walls that were a hundred feet in height, and of a sufficient breadth for three
Syria, together with that called the Egyptian Sea, having no havens in it for ships. And this is Egypt, walled about on every side."-Wars of the Jews, book iv. c. 10, sect 5.
To the north of the Lesser Zab, and near the Tigris, the Ten Thousand found in their retreat a city, the walls of which were no less lofty than these. Marching the rest of the day without disturbance," says Xenophon, (Anab. iii. p. 212,)" they came to the river Tigris, where stood a large uninhabited city called Larissa, anciently inhabited by the Medes, the walls of which were twenty-five feet in breadth, one hundred in height, and two parasangas in circuit; all built of brick, except the plinth, which was of stone, and twenty feet high." The city here named Larissa, by Xenophon, is conjectured by Bochart to have been the Resen of the Scriptures, Gen. x. 12. He supposes that, when the Greeks asked the people of the country "what city are these the ruins of?" they answered, "Laresen,” that is, of Resen. It is easy, says Spelman, to imagine how this word might be softened by a Greek termination, and made Larissa. At a very short distance from Resen, the army passed an uninhabited castle of enormous dimensions, standing near the town of Mespila, formerly also belonging to the Medes. "The plinth of the wall was built with polished stone full of shells, being fifty feet in breadth, and as many in height. Upon this stood a brick wall, fifty feet also in breadth, one hundred in height, and six parasangas in circuit." As the word reixos frequently signifies "a city," I am surprised that Mr. Spelman should, in this instance, have followed the Latin versions, and translated castle, what would have borne the much better interpretation of
chariots to pass along it together abreast, as well as to have been defended by fifteen hundred towers along these walls, which were each of them two hundred feet high. If the walls of Babylon, however, which were comparatively of so much more modern erection, are thought to have left no trace remaining, those of Nineveh may well have totally disappeared.
From the height on which we stood, extending our view to a considerable distance in every direction, we could not certainly perceive any marked delineation of one great outline; but mounds and smaller heaps of ruins were scattered widely over the plain, sufficient to prove that the site of the original city occupied a vast extent, notwithstanding that some of the latest visitors to this place have thought that the remains were confined to the few mounds of the centre only.
Macdonald Kinneir conceived that the ruins at this place were those of Ninus, the city which succeeded to Nineveh, and not those of Nineveh itself. It is evident, however, that this writer spoke only of the central mounds; as he expressly states that the circumference of all the remains he saw did not exceed four miles, and very inexplicably observes, that he saw neither stones nor rubbish of any kind, though the mounds are naturally altogether formed of the last.*
If the temple of Araske, in which Sennacherib was slain, after
"fortified city." The word koyán, "a stone full of shells," which occurs in the description of this fortress, has occasioned the usual quantity of learned trifling among the commentators. Leunclavius imagined, that the historian meant stones on which the figures of shells had been sculptured! But Hutchinson observes, that in this opinion he can by no means concur; he thinks, the shells must have been the work of nature; and no doubt, he was right. The stone was probably of the same description as that used in the walls of Orfah.† A pyramid of singular structure was observed near Resen: “Close to the city stood a pyramid of stone one hundred feet square and two hundred high, in (upon) which a great number of barbarians, who fled from the neighbouring villages, had conveyed themselves.”
* Geographical Memoir on Persia, 4to. p. 259.
See page 122 of this volume.
returning from his Egyptian war, when all the armour of his soldiers was knawed to pieces by mice, in one night, at Pelusium,* and a hundred and eighty-five thousand of his army, with all their tains and generals, were carried off by a pestilence, before the walls сарof Jerusalem, in another,† was equal in extent, either to the temple of Priapus at Thebes, or of Belus at Babylon, the mounds here forming an oblong square, nearly in the centre of the city, might perhaps mark the site of that building; but I remember no particular details regarding the size or form of that edifice, which could assist in the elucidation of this question.
From among the ruins of Nineveh, many antique gems, intaglios, and hieroglyphic devices on stone, have been dug up; of some of which, drawings and descriptions are given in the "Mines de l'Orient," by Mr. Rich, of Bagdad; and not long since, a large stone was found here, inscribed all over with sculptures and unknown characters, which, falling into the hands of the Turks, was by them broken to pieces and destroyed.
On descending from the mound of Tal Ninoa, we walked across the level space, included between it and the other principal mounds near the river, and found the whole extent of it covered with broken pottery, of a very coarse quality, and in general but slightly ribbed, though evidently of the ancient kind.‡
* Herodotus. + Berosus, as quoted by Josephus, Ant. b. x. c. 1. s. 5. The completeness of the destruction of Nineveh, which Arbaces the Mede is said to have levelled with the ground, makes it matter of wonder that its ruins are still to be “This point, I think," says Bishop Newton, " is generally agreed upon, that Nineveh was taken and destroyed by the Medes and Babylonians; these two rebelling and uniting together subverted the Assyrian empire: but authors differ much about the time when Nineveh was taken, and about the king of Assyria, in whose reign it was taken, and even about the persons who had the command in this expedition. Herodotus§ affirms, that it was taken by Cyaxares, king of the Medes; St. Jerome, after the Hebrew chronicle,|| asserts that it was taken by Nabuchodonosor, king of the Baby
§ Herod. Lib. 1. Cap. 106. p. 45. Edit. Gale.
|| Hieron. in Naum. ii. 12. p. 1574. Vol. 3. Edit. Benedict. Seder Olam Rabba soli Nabuchodonosoro rem attribuit, et tempus ponit. Anno primo Nabuchodonosor subegit Nineven, id est, non diu post mortem
In riding across this plain, we passed a small stream, called "Maee Kosa," or the water of Kosa, which comes from the eastern
onians but these accounts may be easily reconciled, for Cyaxares and Nabuchodonosor might take it with their joint forces, as they actually did, according to that which is written in the book of Tobit, (xiv. 15,) if the Assuerus in Tobit be the same (as there is great reason to think him the same) with the Cyaxares of Herodotus: But before Tobias died, he heard of the destruction of Nineveh, which was taken by Nabuchodonosor and Assuerus; and before his death he rejoiced over Nineveh. Josephus,* who saith, in one place, that the empire of the Assyrians was dissolved by the Medes, saith in another, that the Medes and Babylonians dissolved the empire of the Assyrians. Herodotus himself† saith, that the Medes took Nineveh, and subdued the Assyrians, except the Babylonian portion; the reason of which was, the Babylonians were their allies and confederates. Ctesias, and after him,‡ Diodorus Siculus, ascribe the taking of Nineveh, and the subversion of the Assyrian empire, to Arbaces the Mede, assisted by Belesis, the Babylonian. I know that§ Eusebius, and after him several excellent chronologers, Usher, Prideaux, and others, reckon this quite a different action, and fix it at quite a different time; but it is not likely that the same city should be twice destroyed, and the same empire twice overthrown, by the same people twice confederated together. Diodorus, who relates this catastrophe, doth not mention the other; but saith expressly, that Arbaces distributed the citizens of Nineveh in the country villages, levelled the city with the ground, transferred many talents of gold and silver to Ecbatana, the royal city of the Medes; and so, saith he, the empire of the Assyrians was subverted."-Newton on the Prophecies, pp. 149-151.
patris. Ebraicum hoc Chronicon secuti sunt S. Hieronymus, &c. Marshami Ch. Sæc. xviii. p. 559.
† και την τε Νινον είλον, και τους Ασσύριους ὑποχειρίους εποιησαντο, πλην της Βαβυλωνίης μοίρης. et Ninuma expugnaverunt, Assyriosque, excepta Babylonica portione, subegerunt. Herod. lib. i. c. 106. p. 45. Edit. Gale.
Diod. Sic. lib. ii. p. 78. Edit. Steph. p. 110.
§ Eusebius (more suo) utramque sententiam in canonem retulit: ad mentem Ctesiæ, Arbaces Medus, ait, Num. 1197. Assyriorum imperio destructo, regnum in Medos transtulit. Dein (post annos 213) ex auctoritate Herodoti, Numb. 1410. Cyaxares Medus subvertit Ninum. Ista autem aσvotata sunt. Marshami Chronicon. Sæc. xviii. p. 556.
|| ὁ δ ̓ ουν Αρβακες τοις κατα την πολιν επιεικώς προσενεχθείς, αυτους μεν κατα κωμας διῴκισε,——την δε πολιν εις έδαφος κατέσκαψεν. επειτα τον τε αργυρον και χρυσον,—πολλων οντα ταλαντων, απεκόμισε της Μηδίας εις Εκβατανα. ἡ μεν ουν ἡγεμονια των Ασσυρίων-ύπο Μηδων κατελύθη τον προειρημενον τροπον. Simili quoque leuitate erga cives usus, quamvis in pagos eos distraheret,-urbem autem solo æquavit. Tum argentum et aurum (multa certa talenta erant) in Ecbatana Medorum regiam transtulit. Hoc ergo modo Assyriorum imperium -a Mediis eversum est. Diod. Sic. lib. ii. p. 81. Edit. Steph. p. 115. Edit. Rhod.
mountains, and passing by the foot of Tal Hermoosh, discharges itself into the Tigris. In this hill, or large mound, excavations have been made, seemingly with a view to ascertain of what material it was formed, and probably with a hope of being able to extract burnt bricks from thence for building, as is done from mounds of ruins at Babylon; but there was here no appearance of such brick-work; the whole, from length of time, and the nature of the materials, having become condensed into one solid mass."
As we passed by the mound, called "Tal-Nebbe-Yunus,” I examined, with more attention, an opening recently made on its northern side, and here I saw, most distinctly, a section of masonry. The bricks were apparently sun-dried, and in dimensions two spans long, and one span deep; they were of a very coarse kind, and were united by layers of common mortar. The supposed tomb of the Prophet Jonah, which stands on the top of the hill, and has collected a tolerably large village about it, is in the hands of Mohammedans. It appeared to me so like the common tombs of saints, seen all over the East, that, pressed as I was for time to return to Mousul, I did not go up to visit it.
As we went down from hence, by the eastern bank of the river, towards the bridge of boats, which goes across the Tigris, we passed again by the stone bridge, over a rivulet coming from the eastward, till it empties itself, close by this, into the river, and remarked, that it has fifteen pointed arches, but of very inferior masonry.
In approaching Mousul from the eastward on our return, its appearance was much more interesting, than that offered on entering
* "And he will stretch out his hand against the north, and destroy Assyria; and will make Nineveh a desolation, and dry like a wilderness. And flocks shall lie down in the midst of her, all the beasts of the nations: both the cormorant and the bittern shall lodge in the upper lintels of it; their voice shall sing in the windows; desolation shall be in the thresholds; for he shall uncover the cedar work. This is the rejoicing city that dwelt carelessly, that said in her heart, I am, there is none beside me how is she become a desolation, a place for beasts to lie down in! every one that passeth by her shall hiss, and wag his hand."—Zephaniah, c. ii. v. 13—15.