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mentions medical men going from Egypt to Rome. But though their physicians are often noticed by ancient writers, the only indication of medical attendance appears to be in the paintings of Beni Hassan; and even there it is uncertain whether a doctor, or a barber, be represented.

Their doctors probably felt the pulse; as Plutarch shows they did at Rome, from this saying of Tiberius, “ a man after he has passed his thirtieth year, who puts forth his hand to a physician, is ridiculous;" whence our proverb of " a fool or a physician after forty."

Diodorus tells us, that dreams were regarded in Egypt with religious reverence, and the prayers of the devout were often rewarded by the gods, with an indication of the remedy their sufferings required; and magic, charms, and various supernatural agencies, were often resorted to by the credulous; who "sought to the idols, and to the charmers, and to them that had familiar spirits, and to the wizards." (Isaiah, xix. 3.)

Origen also says, that when any part of the body was afflicted with disease, they invoked the demon to whom it was supposed to belong, in order to obtain a cure.

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In cases of great moment oracles were consulted; and a Greek papyrus found in Egypt mentions divination " through a boy with a lamp, a bowl, and a pit ;" which resembles the pretended power

CHAP. IX.

DREAMS. MAGNETISM.

353

The same also notices the

of the modern magicians of Egypt. mode of discovering theft, and obtaining any wish; and though it is supposed to be of the 2nd century, the practices it alludes to are doubtless from an old Egyptian source; and other similar papyri contain recipes for obtaining good fortune and various benefits, or for causing misfortunes to an enemy. Some suppose the Egyptians had even recourse to animal magnetism, and that dreams indicating cures were the result of this influence; and (though the subjects erroneously supposed to represent it apply to a very different act) it is not impossible that they may have discovered the mode of exercising this art, and that it may have been connected with the strange scenes recorded at the initiation into the mysteries. If really known, such a power would scarcely have been neglected; and it would have been easy to obtain thereby an ascendency over the minds of a superstitious people.

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Indeed the readiness of man at all times to astonish on the one hand, and to court the marvellous on the other, is abundantly proved by present and past experience. That the nervous system may be worked upon by it to such a degree, that a state either of extreme irritability, or of sleep and coma, may be induced, in the latter case paralysing the senses so as to become deadened to pain, is certain; and a highly sensitive temperament may exhibit phenomena beyond the reach of explanation; but it requires very little experience to know that we are wonderfully affected by far more ordinary causes; for the nerves may be acted upon to such an extent, by having as we commonly term it our teeth set on edge," that the mere filing a saw would suffice to drive any one mad, if unable to escape from its unceasing discord. What is this but an effect upon the nerves? and what more could be desired to prove the power of any agency? And the world would owe a debt of gratitude to the professors of animal magnetism, if instead of making it, as some do, a mere exhibition to display a power, and astonish the beholders, they would continue the efforts already begun, for discovering all the beneficial uses to which it is capable of being applied. We might then rejoice that, as astrology led to the more useful knowledge of astronomy, this influence enabled us to comprehend our nervous system, on

VOL. II.

2 A

which so many conditions of health depend, and with which we are so imperfectly acquainted.

The cure of diseases was also attributed by the Egyptians to Exvotos offered in the temples. They consisted of various kinds. Some persons promised a certain sum for the maintenance of the sacred animals; or whatever might propitiate the deity; and after the cure had been effected, they frequently suspended a model of the restored part, in the temple; and ears, eyes, distorted arms, and other members, were dedicated as memorials of their gratitude and superstition.

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1. Ivory hand, in Mr. Salt's Collection. 2. Stone tablet, dedicated to Amunre, for the recovery of a complaint in the ear; found at Thebes. 3. An ear of terra cotta in my possession, from Thebes.

Sometimes travellers, who happened to pass by a temple, inscribed a votive sentence on the walls, to indicate their respect for the deity, and solicit his protection during their journey; the complete formula of which contained the adoration (proskunéma) of the writer, with the assurance that he had been mindful of his wife, his family, and friends; and the reader of the inscription was sometimes included in a share of the blessings it solicited. The date of the king's reign and the day of the month were also added, with the profession and parentage of the writer. The complete formula of one proskunéma was as follows: "The adoration of Caius Capitolinus, son of Flavius Julius, of the fifth

CHAP. IX.

EXVOTOS.

355

troop of Theban horse, to the goddess Isis, with ten thousand names. And I have been mindful of (or have made an adoration for) all those who love me, and my consort, and children, and all my household, and for him who reads this. In the year 12 of the emperor Tiberius Cæsar, the 15 of Paüni."

The Egyptians, according to Pliny, claimed the honour of having invented the art of curing diseases. Indeed, the study of medicine and surgery appears to have commenced at a very early period in Egypt, since Athothes, the second king of the country, is stated to have written upon the subject of anatomy; and the schools of Alexandria continued till a late period to enjoy the reputation, and display the skill, they had inherited from their predecessors. Hermes was said to have written six books on medicine, the first of which related to anatomy; and the various recipes, known to have been beneficial, were recorded, with their peculiar cases, in the memoirs of physic, inscribed among the laws deposited in the principal temples.

The embalmers were probably members of the medical profession, and the Bible states that "the physicians embalmed" Jacob.

482.

Funeral Boat, or Baris.

Thebes.

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P. Tomb at Sakkara, arched with stone, of the time of Psammitichus, or Psamatik, II., whose name occurs on the roof to the left, and in other places.

CHAPTER X.

OFFERINGS TO THE DEAD

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FUNERAL RITES
TOMBS FUNERAL PRO-
CESSIONS-TRIALS OF THE DEAD-SACRED LAKE- BURIAL EMBALMING
SARCOPHAGI-PAPYRI, &c.

THE great care of the Egyptians was directed to their condition after death; that last state towards which their present life was only the pilgrimage; and they were taught to consider their abode here merely as an "inn" upon the road. They looked forward to being received into the company of that Being, who represented the Divine Goodness, if pronounced worthy at the great judgment

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