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proach nearer the top is a great stone jutting out from the rock, beyond which they tell us, Elias was forbidden to go; to ascend higher being only permitted to Moses.

"The summit of Mount Sinai is somewhat conical; or rather, it has two small summits, on one of which is a mosque; and on the other a Greek church, and a second at a little distance belonging to the Latins, and standing on the very spot where, according to tradition, Moses received the law from God himself. (Exod. xxxi. 18.) Adjoining to the Latin Church is a great rock, which constitutes the highest point of the mountain, and cannot be ascended without some difficulty. On one side of this rock there is a little cave or grotto, wherein Moses is said to have fasted forty days and forty nights; and from thence there is a crack quite through the rock, so as to let in the light. Here it was, say they, that the Lord hid Moses while his glory passed by, that he might not see his face; and thus they point out many other places mentioned in the holy Scriptures.

"It is remarkable that the north part of Mount Sinai is of red granite for above half way up, the rest being of a yellowish ground with small black grains, insomuch, that the mountain, at a distance, appears to be of two colours. The easiest of the three ways to the top of Mount Sinai, and which Moses is thought to have used, is called the road of Serick, beginning with a gentle ascent from the vale of Raba, and running between the little summits of Mount Horeb,

which abounds with shrubs and aromatic herbs, affording a good pasture for the cattle. On the left of this road, as we ascend Mount Horeb, are four chapels dedicated to St. Anne, St. Pantalearmon, St. John Baptist, and the holy girdle of the Virgin Mary. A little nearer the road than any of these, there is a long cell cut out of the rock, wherein two brothers, the sons of a king, are said to have lived as hermits; and near St. John's chapel there is a building which they say belonged to a hermit, whose name was Gregory. Higher up, upon a little plain between mounts Horeb and Sinai, there is a cell under a rock representing, but very rudely, the head of a calf, and into this hole the monks will have it that Aaron cast the head of the golden calf which he set up to be worshipped by the Israelites; for as to the body, they are not solicitous about it, looking upon the head of the animal as the object of their adoration. Near this place is a rock which nature seems to have formed into steps, whereon they pretend the molten idol was erected: whether this be true or not, a better situation could hardly have been chosen for that purpose, as it might be seen from all the neighbouring valleys. After having viewed Mount Sinai and Mount Horeb, we paid a visit to the convent of the Forty Martyrs, where the fathers keep only a servant who takes care of their large garden. The number of hermits who formerly inhabited these mountains is almost incredible, but the insults and oppressions of the Arabs have forced them to remove it is said that the emperor Justinian

built the convent of mount Sinai at their request. Mount Serick, which we likewise took a view of, is a long, narrow hill to the west of Horeb. Mount Episteme is so called from a woman of that name, who lived on it with her husband, Galatio, where a nunnery was afterwards founded, the ruins of which are still to be discerned. Near the south-west corner of this mountain, which is inconsiderable with respect to those already described, is a little hill, called Aroane by the Arabs, and by the Greeks the Tabernacle of the Testimony, where they say Aaron was consecrated, and first performed the offices of the priesthood; so that if there be any dependance upon this tradition, it is probable that on this hill was placed the tabernacle of the congregation. Between Episteme and Mount Sinai, and not far from the convent of St. Catharine, is the round hill which the Greeks call the Mount of Moses, where they say he was keeping the flock of Jethro, his father-in-law, when the Lord appeared and spake to him out of the bush which burnt and was not consumed, whereof mention has been made already. The famous Siniac inscription, mentioned by Kircher in his Prodromus Copticus,' is on a small stone at the foot of Mount Horeb, about half a mile to the west of the convent of St. Catharine; but the Arabs superstitiously imagining that the stone had some extraordinary virtue in it when beaten to powder, and taken inwardly, have broken off so many pieces of it that the inscription is almost entirely defaced. There are likewise abundance of other inscriptions on the

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stones about these mountains, but as they are in a very ancient character, void of beauty and regularity, and absolutely unintelligible, I thought the pains of copying them might be very well spared. The Arabs live in tents. Arabia is washed by the Red Sea."*

* Thompson.

CHAPTER XI.

AFTER the observations already stated on the tripartite division of the universe,-possessed as we are of the typical ichnography delineating this partition, and having marked in large characters the particulars contained in the foregoing statement, which do, we think, indicate some remaining traces of the once symbolic import of Mount Sinai, as representative of the same, the remarks we are now about to offer may probably have already suggested themselves to the minds of our readers. The traces to which we allude were indeed erected by Christians of the early Grecian church, but must, we think, have owed their existence to some remote tradition of the original religion, or some remaining traces of Mosaic types, which it is probable were not totally ef faced at the distant era when the convent of Mount Sinai was founded by the Greek emperor Justinian. That some remaining traces of the original religion as observed by Abraham, may, for a series of succeeding generations, have been preserved in Arabia, is extremely probable, not only on account of the veneration in which the

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