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or expressing estimation, bears so sin- marking the line of distinction, in gular a character, that one can hardly connexion with the great importance be made acquainted with it without attached to its contents, and the care immediately proposing the question, exercised to prevent its being overWhence could it possibly originate?” turned, may be viewed as an indicaThe query has accordingly been put, tion that there was a hereditary resby an intelligent correspondent, in pect to some more ancient rite or idea, your third Number ; but, in conse- the meaning of which, and even its quence of the oblivion of former ages, peculiar character, had been lost in and the indifference which men have the lapse of ages. generally manifested in regard to the Trivial as the custom under considorigin of customs with which they eration may appear,—to those espewere themselves perfectly familiar, cially who would deem it a degradathere is reason to fear, that from the tion were they to waste a thought depths of antiquity no responsive the vestiges of popular tradition, who voice shall be heard, none at least that find sufficient occupation for their sacan give a certain or distinct sound. perior powers in acquainting them
As in the days of our forefathers selves with the ever-varying minutie the salt-seller was placed in the mid- of modern manners, the inquiry leads dle of the table, that it might run no us much farther back than might as risk of being overturned, it might at first be imagined, and points to sources first view seem, that, as its position of intelligence not unworthy of the individed the table as it were into two vestigation of the philosophic mind. equal parts, the expression," sitting Various proofs have been given of the above," or "sitting below, the salt," symbolical use of salt, in connexion meant nothing more than having a with Divine worship, among ancient place at the upper, or at the lower, nations. As salt was invariably used end of the table; and thus, that the in the sacred rites of the heathen, free relation, which one's seat was said whom immediately it was received by to bear to the salt, was merely ac- the Church of Rome, it has been cidental, from the circumstance of the thought that this custom was borrorvessel which contained it being the ed from the Jews. It was one of the central object, in the same manner as laws delivered by Moses, " Every one, in our own time, might be said oblation of thy meat-offeringshalt to sit above or below the epargne. thou season with salt. Lev. č. 13.
But although it may afterwards ap- V. Etymol. Dict. of the Scottish Lanpear that, among the ancients, salt guage, vo. Salt, adji and Saut-FaT. was the established symbol of friend
“The great importance attached to ship, I do not see that the relative salt,” says Pliny," appeats especial position of individuals, as above or be ly from the sacred rites of the anlow the vessel which contained it, cients, who never celebrated any sacticould be meant of itself to intimate fice sine mola salsa. For so they dethe greater or less degree of respect nominated toasted corn sprinkled with which their host entertained for them. salt; for it, being bruised, For, in this case, actual propinquity led on the victim. The fire, the head to the salt-seller, whether the person of the victiin, and the sacrificing sat above or below it, must have been knives, were indeed all sprinkled with the test of estimation.
the crumbled cake." Hist. lib. $T. If, however, it could be supposed, c.7.-To the same putpose is the lanthat the salt-vat did not equally divide guage of Juvenal :the table as to its length, but that it « Sertoque delubris, et farta imponité cul. was placed nearer the head or bottom,
b933 Satyna as the less or more honourable guests exceeded in number, this difficulty And of Tibullus : los srcentut would be obviated. For thus it must " At yadum in curis hominum genuis omina have been understood, that it was not
noctis propinquity to this symbol, but the Parre pio placant, et saliente sale." possession of a seat above it, that constituted the peculiar badge of honour. Hence, izas,, has been observed, the Buy perhaps all that we can fairly : Iterin immolatio, which was as it means dedute from the custom referred to the consecration of the victim by the is, that the choice of this utensil, as act of sprinkling, or of laying
salted cake on its head. The cake it- used at all entertainments, both of the self was called mola a molendo, because gods and men, whence a particular it was made of bruised corn, or that sanctity was believed to be lodged in which had been ground, mola, in a it. It is thence called hias "215, mill. By means of this cake, also, divine salt, by Homer; and most idos, which, when bruised, they sprinkled holy salt, by others; and 'salinorum on the sacrifice, they used to divine: appositu; by the placing of salt on the whence the Greek terms, kasuesuarlía, table, a sort of holiness was supposed i. e. 16. divination by meal ;” and to be derived to them.” Antiq. ii. 415. ovaoxuuzr/sía, “ divination by the salted From the language of Philo Jucake."
dæus, it has been inferred, with great
appearance of truth, that although no But salt, even as symbolically re- mention is made of this circumstance garded, was not exclusively appropri- in the Pentateuch, salt was always ated to a religious use. It was also placed on the table of shew-bread an established symbol of friendship along with the loaves. “The table," between man and man. We learn says this ancient writer, “has its pofrom Eustathius, Iliad, A. that among sition towards the south, upon which the ancient Greeks salt was presented there are bread and salt.“ Vit. Moys. to guests, before any other food, as a lib. 3. Scacchus concludes, that there symbol of friendship. Hence Æschi- must have been at least two salt-sellers, nes, when describing the sacred rites because the Greek term (Bass) is ot hospitality, says, that the Greeks used in the plural. Myrothec. ii. 495. made great account, às rónews draj, The figurative connexion between “ of the salt of the city and the pub- salt and friendship does not appear so lie table." - The language of Pliny, close, that this can well be viewed as salem et caseum edere, contains a simi- the primary use of the symbol. It lari allusion ;' and that of Cicero, Seems necessary to suppose, that be« Vulgò dicitur, multos modios salis fore it would be applied in this mansiinul edos esse, ut "amicitiæ munus ner, it had been generally received as expletum esse."
an established emblem of what was it Eustathius says, that “ as salt con- permanent. Now, this idea was most sists of aqueous and terrene particles probably borrowed from the mode of mixed together, or is a concretion of confirming covenants by sacrifice, in several aqueous parte, it was intimate which salt was invariably used; and ed that, in like manner; the stranger it is well known,' that sacrifice was a and his host, from the time of their common rite in confederation, not only tasting salt together, should maintain where God was the principal party, a constant union of love and friend- but between man and man. This is ship.” This idea, however, seems by evident, from the account given of the far too metaphorical and refined to covenant between Jacob and Laban, bave originated a custom received by Gen. xxxi. 44, 45. As an agreement nations in an early state of society. of this kind was called "
Others, with greater plausibility, by sacrifice;" from the use of salt in have observed, that, as salt preserves the oblation, it was also denominated meat from corruption, the use of it, a covenant of salt,” Num. xviü. 19. as a symbol, signified that the friend- That singular phrase,
" the salt of ship, which had its commencement in the covenant,” Lev. ii. 13. obviously -a mutual participation of it, should be contains the same allusion. With this firm and lasting.
corresponds the German term, salzIt has also been supposed, that this bund, explained by Wachter in his custom respected the purifying quality Glossary, Fædus firmum validumque of salt which was cominonly used in ratione durationis. lustrations, and that it intimated that The presenting of salt to a stranger, friendship should be free from all ar- or the eating of it with him, might tifice, jealousy, and suspicion. thus come to be a common syinbol of
Potter, I find, has in general pre- friendship, as containing a reference ferred the same idea that had occur- to the ancient sacrificial mode of eistera sted to me, in regard to the origin of ing into leagues of antity, although salt as a symbol of friendship. It those who used this might in general Tnay be," he says, to the ground of this be total strangers to its meaning. custom was only this, that salt was Hence, also, most probably, the idea
so universally received, that the spil in Amsterdam well worting atte ling of the salt was a bad omen; as it tion.
In out was supposed to forebode the breach The ci-devant Stadthouses now of that friendship, of which the con- Palace, is a grand building, and ma junot participation of salt was the nificently fitted up. It contains there symbol
2 T large rooms full of paintings, chic! It would appear, however, that the by the Dutch masters. 1 vas, m. symbol itselt had been pretty general pleased by six oreight of them, yurt ly diffused among the nations. We ciularly the rural scenes, with att are informed, that, to this day, the by Paul Potter; and the eating of bread and salt together, is a school, by Gerard Dow. This las symbol of friendship among the Mus- should have preferred to any covites. Stuck. Antiq. Conviv. p. 270. others. There is also a large picture
Those who would wish to have fur- by Vandyke, which contains sereta ther information in regard to this figures. In it there is the head of ancient custom, may, besides the writ- old man, for which, it is said, thet er last quoted, consult Pierii Hiero- go-masters were offered seven thou. glyph. fol. 221, D.; Pitisci Lexic. vo. sand florins. It is calculated that this Sal., and Potter’s Antiquities of Greece, building cost upwards of thirty mi loc. cit.
lions of guilders. It was founded I may afterwards supply you with the mud, upon 13,659 large woode a few remarks on the singular custom piles, and measures 262 feet in front of using bread and salt as the instru- by 235 in depth, and 116 in height ments of adjuration. ANTIQUUS, exclusive of the tower. It is situated said nois152 stunina so in the great square of the city, whi Se vidsesəqaiherov e gorebk is sufficiently spacious to afford a pre ang emisioe sgstro sds czess për view. In this dwelling, Ler jums vienojarsen
Bonaparte, while king of Holland, SKETCHES OF FOREIGN SCENERY AND sided. Of the mildness, equity, stitu irattu
humanity, of this man, every yads scis' oe No IV. szanti lentate speaks well. He seems to have bee sroisd gnifterio frigures jepele st. a pretty general favourite. Although wod noordog A Amsterdam. it the Prince of Orange may be ins
I LEFT Haarlem yesterday evening, respects popular, I have never heart and in about three hours found my any one mention the name of the preself in Amsterdam, the greatest city sent king, I went through the whole of Holland, and at one time the em- of the Palace, which is finished chili porium of European commerce. I with marble, and most superbly futperambulated the streets, &c. this nished. The grand hall is a magnis morning. It is a dull, and in my cent apartment, and with the excep opinion, an uninteresting place. The tion of Il Salone, the Town-halt canals are certainly very spacious, and Padua, is the finest I have ever ses the streets well and pleasantly shaded Besides the paintings before-mentionby rows of goodly trees, but to a ed, I remember another with whic stranger who knows not, and does not was much delighted. It represents desire to know any thing about mer- meeting of Dutch gentlemen, up cantile matters, it must necessarily be what occasion I do not remember. stupid. In forming an estimate of this painting, however, it is said, the any object, much depends upon the Sir Joshua Reynolds declared it lo. state of the observer's mind at the the finest and most characterists time. During my short stay in this thing he had ever seen, and that town, the heavens wore a gloomy as- man might tell what each of the pect, the weather was damp and raw, sons represented was going to say. the streets were dirty, and the hotel I visited the house possessed by in which I lodged partook in a con- society called Feliz Meritis. 1 siderable degree of all these qualities; founded about the year 1777, by som by which means, the impressions of opulent lovers of science, among who cheerfulness, cleanliness, and comfort, was the well known Van Swindes which I had received during the pre. This society, I am informed, is cons ceding part sof my journey, were in posed of five classes. The attention some degree offaced. There are, how of the first is directed chiefly to the ever, I have no doubt, many objects improvements in commerce, mang
600 feet long, and to broad. It is his left, which supported his head, built upon 30 arches, and on each side hung over his plumed helmet. On there are iron balustrades. This bridge the other side of the lamp, upon a conducts to the only pleasant public bench, lay a tall thin figure, with walk which I observed in or near Am- sallow complexion; a nose and chín sterdam, and I unfortunately did not handsome, but rather too much hookdiscover it till the evening of my de- ed; and the blackest and most fiay parture. It was crowded by people of eyes I ever experienced. He seemed all ranks and ages; and I observed a about 50 years of age or upwards, and great many beautiful chariots in mi- wore a long blue great coat, with a niature, drawn by goats, richly and head dress of white muslin, fresem: fancifully caparisoned, in which little bling a Turkish turban, and red mas children, gaily dressed, were seated. rocco shoes. He lay upon his side, Every thing here seems to be put to with his face to the light ; his head use. In the market-place, and along supported by his right hand, and it the keys, you meet with bull dogs and his left there was a book, which bei mastiffs, loaded with heavy burdens, or perused most attentively and leisurely. dragging along little carts; and in a Every two or three minutes he raised house in which I visited, there was an his head, and fixed his sight on the old cat, whose occupation it was to lamp, as if meditating on the contents drive the flies and wasps from some of the volume. I could have believed fruit which lay ripening in the sun. him some powerful magician engrossed
About eight in the evening, I em- with the study of the magie arts or barked on board the treckschuyt for even the Prince of Darkness himself, Utrecht. The ruif, as it is called, or “Of regal port, thofaded splendour Fan. place for the gentry, was engaged, so I entered the ruim with a most motley In the back ground were figures and group. This is the larger part of the faces of every kind-men, women, and boat, and may contain near forty people, children ; some of which, from the whereas the ruif, or small cabin-like unsteady light of the lamp, appeared partition near the stern, does not ad- to advance and recede like the repremit more than eight. It is lighted sentations of the Phantasmagoria. But from the ceiling by a lamp, and is so all were asleep, save Satan and myself low in the roof, that a man of ordi- Seldom have I seen any countenancer nary stature cannot stand upright. A which impressed me more with ske long range of seats occupies each side, idea of a person whose ways were not and there is a similar range down the those of the world ; and, though wel centre. I took my place in an obscure are now perhaps soine humdred miles corner, where I had a complete view from each other, in imagination I still of this curious and novel scene. behold his fiery countenance, and al
There were in all about three-and- most tremble at the trouble of his thirty persons, and by accident they darkened eye." les sjell had grouped themselves in the most At four in the morning I arrived at picturesque and striking attitudes. Utrecht; and being attracted by the Immediately before me lay a band of beauty of an eiderdown coverlet, and weary labourers, with their scythes fatigued by my watching in the night and pruning-hooks, all in the arms of I went to bed for some hours to be Morpheus. The lamp was now light- I am much pleased with my rese ed, and threw a broad unnatural light dence here, and have passed my time on the objects in its immediate neigh- much more happily than in Amster bourhood; whilsta pale and sickly gleam dam. Utrecht is the sweetest towall irradiated the more distant parts,
serv- have yet seen in Holland. The rate ing merely to render darkness visible. parts are high and broad, and com The two principal figures were reclining mand a fine view of the adjacent on each side of the lamp. On the one country, which is rich and beautiful side there lay a gigantic dragoon, with The walls are surrounded by a broad huge mustachios and a long sabre ; he fosse ; on the other side of which, had a black patch on his forehead, and in Leyden, there is a delightful walk wore on his breast a badge of honour. all round the town. The strips of He was lying on the ground, with his ground between the walls and the head and chest somewhat raised: in fosse is divided into small and elegaer his right hand he held his sabre ; and gardens, in many of which there are