« AnteriorContinuar »
and others, shall have been given to the public, and Mr. Ainsworth and his colleagues shall have completed the expedition they have undertaken under the auspices of the Royal Geographical Society, the secrets of some of the most interesting districts in Upper Mesopotamia and Kurdistan, especially those of Sinjar, Hatteras, and Mount Jewar, will, it is expected, be laid fully open to the European world. In the mean time, as every source of information, both private and public, has been made use of in combination with the author's personal knowledge of the country, it is hoped that the geographical account which has been given will be found at once entirely accurate, and as particular, too, as the limits of such a work will permit. In this description may be included the characteristic details of manners and customs of the Arab and Kurdish tribes, which, derived chiefly from actual observation, have been confirmed by various persons, whose opinions, from their opportunities of judging, are entitled to the highest credit.
The sketch of the natural history of these provinces has likewise been drawn up with an anxious desire to afford a summary of whatever valuable information has been collected upon the subject.
Of the decorations of this volume, the author has only to observe, that they are all engraved from drawings made by himself upon the spot, and that he can vouch at least for their accuracy, nothing having been added to the original sketch except the particular effect which was deemed appropriate to the subject.
The utmost care has been bestowed on the construction of the map, which will be found to contain all the additions made by recent travellers to our geographical knowledge of the interesting country which occupies the basin of the Tigris and Euphrates.
General Description of Mesopotamia and Assyria.
High Claims of these Countries on our Regard.-Interest attached to
their early History.-Inquiry checked by Scantiness of authentic Rec-
ords.-Little known of the Origin of either the Assyrian or Babylo-
nian Empire, and their intimate Connexion with each other.-Defini-
tion of "Assyria" according to the Greek Historians.-The Jewish
Writers.-Boundaries.-Mesopotamia.-Limits defined.-Divisions of
Assyria according to Ptolemy-Strabo-D'Anville.-Mesopotamia ac-
cording to Strabo.-Modern Divisions of both Provinces.-Inhabitants.
-Tribes-Arabs, and their Locations.-Kurds.-Habits.-Face of the
Country.-Mountains.- Rivers.- Euphrates.-Its Course.-Scenery
and Places along its Banks.-Periods of Rise and Fall.-The Tigris
and Tributaries.-Its Course.-Shut el Arab.-Khabour and Hermas.
-Greater and Lesser Zab.-Diala.-System of artificial Irrigation.-
Nature of the ancient Canals.-Names of those on Record.-The Pal-
lacopas.-The Nahrawan and Dijeil.-Modern Canals.-Marshes of
Babylonia.-Waasut.-The Shut el Hye.-Chaldean Marshes, and
History of the Assyrian Monarchy.
Uncertainty of the Chronology of these Periods.-Necessity of adopting
some consistent System of Notation. - Errors of Usher, Lloyd, and
others.-Discrepancy of Opinion between various Authors.-Mode of
Notation adopted.-Sources of Information.-Sacred Writ. - Greek
Historians.-Herodotus-Ctesias. -Commencement of the Assyrian
Empire according to each.-Syncellus and Polyhistor.-Beke's "Ori-
gines Biblica."-Scriptural Account.-Lists of Kings of both Monar-
chies to the Fall of Babylon.-Claims of Ctesias to Credit discussed.-
Opinions divided.-His Account of the Assyrian Monarchy.- Ninus.
-Semiramis.-Ninyas, &c.-Thonos Concolerus.-His Identity with
Sardanapalus.-Errors of Ctesias.-History of the Monarchy according
to Scripture and Ptolemy's Canon.-Asshur Founder of it.-Pul.-
Tiglath-Pileser.-Shalmaneser. - Sennacherib. - Esarhaddon, suppo-
sed to be the warlike Sardanapalus.-Saosducheus, &c.-Various Con-
jectures.-Nabuchodonosor.-Fall of Nineveh-And of the Assyrian
-Esarhaddon, the warlike King of Assyria.-Nabopolassar. - His
Power.-Nabocolassar or Nebuchadnezzar.-Aids in the Destruction
of Nineveh.-Overruns Syria, and carries the Jews into Captivity.-
Humbles Pharaoh.-His Dreams.-Divine Predictions.-His Humilia-
tion-Repentance-And Death.-Evil Merodach.-The Belshazzar of
Daniel.-Murdered by Neriglissar, who probably is identical with Da-
rius the Mede. He seizes the Throne-And is slain in Battle.-Labo-
rosoarchod.-Nabonadius.-Nitocris.-Her Acts and Improvements.-
Babylon attacked by Cyrus.-Taken by turning the Euphrates.-Ful-
filment of the Prophecies.-Gradual Decay of Babylon.-Its Destruc-
tion by Darius-By Xerxes.-Seleucia.-Accounts of its Desolation by
Origin, Government, Religion, Laws and Customs, &c., of
Sources of Information.-Origin of the Assyrians.-Government.-Re-
ligion.-Gods of the Assyrians.-Customs and Laws same as those of
the Babylonians.-Government of the Babylonians.-Names of their
Monarchs, and Derivation.-Their Habits.-Officers and Functiona-
ries. Establishment and Titles.-Laws.-Little known regarding
them. Sale of Virgins.- Punishments. Religion. - Chaldeans.-
Opinions regarding their Origin.-Regarded as a nomad Race by
Heeren and Gesenius.-Faber's Theory of the Progress of their Reli-
gion-And of the Dispersion of Mankind after the Flood.-Of the Cu-
thim or Cushim.-Remarks on Faber's Theory.-Mr. Beke's Theory.-
Supported by Coincidence of ancient and modern Names.-Bochart.-
Difficulties of the Subject.-The Chaldeans the dominant People in
ancient Babylon.-Origin and Progress of their Religion.-Chaldean
Cosmogony and Doctrines according to Berosus.-Its Similarity with
the Scriptural Account of the Noachian Deluge.-Mythology.-Pul or
Belus. Nebo, Rach, Nego, Merodach, &c.-Grossness and Depravity
of their Ceremonies.- Manners and Customs of the Babylonians.-
Learning. Science.-Astronomy and Astrology.-Mathematics.-Mu-
sic.-Poetry. Skill in working Metals and Gems.-Manufactures.-
Greatest Interest of these Countries attaches to the early Periods of their
Existence. -Vestiges of former Greatness everywhere abundant. ---
Ruins of Babylon.-Discussions regarding the Identity of Site of an-
cient Babel and Babylon.-Denied by Beke, who places the Land of
Shinar in Upper Mesopotamia.-Ainsworth's geological Observations.
-Tower of Babel.-No Scriptural Authority for supposing that it was
destroyed at the time of the Dispersion of Mankind.-Location of the
other Cities of Nimrod.-Accad.-Erech.-Calneh.-All Traces of the
most ancient Postdiluvian Fabrics probably effaced by subsequent
Structures.-Ancient Babylon described.-By what Authors.-Extent.
-Height of its Walls according to various Authorities.-Structure.-
Streets. Intersected by the Euphrates.-Bridge.-New Palace and
Golden Statue.-Other gigantic Works.-Canals.-Artificial Lake.-
Its Construction attributed to Semiramis, to Nebuchadnezzar, and to
Queen Nitocris.-Population.-Space occupied by Buildings.--Scrip-
tural Denunciations against Babylon
Allusions to them by ancient Authors.-From A.D. 917 to 1616.-De-
scribed by Niebuhr and Beauchamp.-By Olivier.-By Rich.-Gen-
eral Aspect.--Face of the Country.-Principal Mounds described.-
Hill of Amran.-El-kasr.-Remarkable Tree.-Embankment.-Muje-
libé. Coffins discovered there.--Birs Nimrod.-Vitrified Masses.-Al
Heimar.-Other Ruins.--Buckingham's Account and Opinions of the
Mujelibé, El-kasr, &c.-Al Heimar.-The Birs.-Sir Robert Ker Por-
ter. His Description of the same Ruins.-His Search for farther Ruins
on the west Side of the Euphrates.-Difficulty of reconciling the Posi-
tion of these Ruins with the Accounts of ancient Historians.-Specu-
lations regarding the ancient Walls of Babylon.-Probable Mistakes of
Buckingham.-Changes in the Course of the Euphrates.-Conjectures
concerning the Birs Nimrod-And the ancient Borsippa.-Discrepan-
cy between ancient Accounts.-Arrian and Berosus.-Cities built from
the Ruins of Babylon.-Ainsworth's Suggestion of a Change of Names
for the several Ruins.-His Mistakes in regard to Measurements.—
The vitrified Masses.-Much Room yet for Investigation respecting
these Ruins and the circumjacent Country.-Prospects of this being
Other Ruins of Babylonia and Chaldea.
Akkerkoof.-The Site of Accad.-Umgeyer-According to some Opinions.
the ancient Orchoe.-Jibel Sanam.-Teredon.-Workha.-Sunkhera.
-Yokha.-Til Eide.--Guttubeh.-Iskhuriah.-Zibliyeh.-Tel Siphr,
&c.-Waasut or Cascara.-Seleucia and Ctesiphon.-Tauk e Kesra.
--Cupidity of a Pacha.-Kalla mal Kesra.-Opis, Situation of.-Me-
dian Wall.-Traditions regarding its Use.--Sittace.-Sheriat el Bei-
tha.-Samarra.-The Malwiyah.-Large Mosque.- Kaf or Chaf.-
Giaoureah.-Kadesia.-Statue of black Basalt.-Tecreet.-Al Hadhr
or Hatra. Felugia.-New Fields of Enterprise for Explorers
Ancient Nineveh nowhere particularly described in Sacred Writ.-Ac-
count of by Diodorus.-Its Walls.-Incidentally mentioned by Herodo-
tus. By the Prophets Jonah and Nahum as an exceedingly great and
profligate City.-Mr. Rich's Account of its Ruins.-Visible Remains.
Tel Koyunjuk.-Sepulchral Chamber and Inscription, &c.-Nebbi Yu-
nus.-Inscribed Gypsum-And Antiques.-Mosque in Memory of the
Prophet Jonah.-Conjectures.-Strabo's Account of the City's Extent.
-Mounds of Yaremjee, Zembil Tepessi, &c.-Vestiges not numerous.
-Mounds of Nimrod or Al Athur.-Larissa of Xenophon ?-Resin ?
-Remains.-Pyramid.-Mr. Rich's Voyages down the Tigris to Bag
dad.-Ancient Sites on the Banks.-His Visit to Mar Mattei.-Villa-
ges of Yezidees and Jacobite Christians.-Ain u Sofra.-Yezidees.-
Their Pope.-Some Particulars of their Faith and Worship.-Posi-
tion, Appearance, and Description of the Convent.-History.-Estab-
lishment.-View from its Terrace.-Ras ul Ain.-Excursion to Rabban
Hormuzd-And Al Kosh.-Character of the Yezidees.-Al Kosh.--
Birth and Burial place of the Prophet Nahum.-Ascent to, and Ap-
pearance of the Convent of Rabban Hormuzd. - Establishment.
Aspect of the Priests and Monks.-Discipline.-Period of Founding.
-Grottoes.-Manuscripts.-Destroyed.-Chaldean Villages populous.
-Convent of Mar Elias.-Churches of Mars Toma and Mar She-
Subsequent History of Mesopotamia and Assyria.
Rennell's Opinion of Xenophon's Retreat.-Advance of Cyrus.-Battle
of Cunaxa, and Death of Cyrus.-Truce between the Greek Generals
and the King. The former advance to the Tigris, and cross it at Sit-
tace. Their March to Opis-And to the Banks of the Zab.-Treach-
ery of Tissaphernes.-Clearchus and other Officers put to Death.--
Farther Attempts at Treachery.-Defeated by the Prudence of the
Grecian Officers.-Xenophon appointed to the Command.-The Greeks
cross the Zab.-Are assailed by Mithradates.-Arrangements for re-
pulsing the Enemy's light Troops.-March to Larissa-To Mespila.-
Struggles during their Progress to the Carduchian Mountains.-Re-
solve to ascend them in Preference to crossing the River.-Are reso-
lutely opposed by the Carduchians.-Abandon their useless Slaves and
Baggage.-Difficulties of the Ascent.-Severe Contests with the Ene-
my-And Losses.-Cross the Centrites, and pass into Armenia.-
Change of Dynasty.-Battle of Arbela.-The Seleucida.-Arsacidæ.
-Appearance of the Romans in Mesopotamia.-Reduced to a Roman
Province.-First Expedition of Crassus.--Embassy from Orodes.-The
Romans driven out by the Parthians.-Second Expedition of Crassus.
-Advice of the King of Armenia.-Treachery of Abgarus-Who con-
ducts them into the Deserts of Charræ.-Infatuation of Crassus.-His
Army attacked by Surenas.-His Son slain.-The Romans forced to re-
treat with great Loss to Charræ.-Again betrayed and surrounded.-
Crassus forced by the Legionaries to negotiate.-Is slain during an In-
terview with Surenas.-The Army destroyed.-Reflections on the
Conduct of Xenophon and Crassus
Continued Contests between the Romans and Persians.
The Parthians overrun the Country to Antioch, which is twice saved
with Difficulty.--Antony, having obtained the Eastern Provinces of
the Roman Empire, overtaxes Syria.-That Province, &c., overrun by
Labienus.-Pacoras defeated by Ventidius and slain.-Antony resolves
to invade the Parthian Empire.-His Success at first.-Takes the
Route of Armenia.-Invests Praaspa, the Capital of Media.-Is forced
to raise the Siege and retreat.-Hardships during his Retreat.-Suc-
ceeds in reaching and crossing the Araxes.-His impatient Obstinacy.