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THE BOOK OF THE DEAD.

Facsimile of a very ancient papyrus containing the Book of the Dead. Found in Thebes.

In the Royal Museum, Berlin, The Book of the Dead was the chief monument of the religious literature of ancient Egypt. It was in 165 chapters ; portions of which were inscribed on the mummy-cases and tombs, and are met with in the later Demotic Papyri. It constituted the funeral ritual of the Egyptians ; describing, in mystical language, the adventures of the soul after death, and the texts and prayers it must repeat in order to escape the torments of the Egyptian Hades. The older portion, which dates back to the Old Empire, was of a practically moral character; the later and more mystical additions and glosses, coming down to the time of the Persians, substituted the cox trine of justification by faith in Osiris.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PLATE. The judgment of the dead before the god Osiris, in the subterranean hall of justice. The scene is taken from the 125th chapter. Osiris, the judge of the nether world, is seated in a naus. On the opposite side, the deceased, led by Mā, the godriess of truth and justice, is introduced into the house resting on pillars. A pair of scales is perted in the middle; resting on one cup of which is a handled beaker, the symbol of the heart : on the opposite, the picture of truth,

Horus and Anubis, Sons of Osiris, are weighing and looking at the tongue of the wale; above which sits the Cynaephalus Hapi, as symbol of

in front of the scale, the ibis-leared Thoth, the scribe of the gods, is inditing the result of the weighing on a papyrus, Between him and Osiris a female hippopotamus, Amām, known as the Swallowtr, represents the accuser of the dead; whom Thoth defends, if he has lerl a just life. In the upper section of the hall, the deceased in addressing a prayer to the forty-two judges of the dead, who have a variety of heads, and each of whom carries the feather of truth and has to pass judgment concerning a special sin; regarding which the deceased declares himself innocent in the text.

the pen.

measure.

EXTRACTS FROV PRIYERS AND PETITIONS IN THE

BOOK OF THE DEAD.

" Do not imprison my soul. Do not let any hurt me. May I sit down among the principal gods in their dwellings. Il vou repel me from the places of regeneration, do not let thervil principles take hold of me, De not let me be repelled from your gates; be not your gates closed against me, May I have traves in Pu, drinks in tepu. Grant to me the inereal food and drinks, the axen, the seese, the fabrics, the incense, ihe oil, and all the good and pure things upon which the couls live. Vlay 1 he eternally settled in the transformations that will please me, May The united with the gods of truth,"

"I did not bid any one kill treacherously. I did not utter « lie to any man, I did not plunder the 6-11pplies in the temple. I did not overcharge. I did not tamper with the weight of the balance. I was not a bully. I did not use too many words in speaking. I did uot turn a deat car to the words of truth. I did not make my mouth work. I did not steal. I was pure -pure--pure. I did not do what the gods hate, I did not cause the slave to be misused by his master. I did not cause any one to be hungry. I did not cause any one to weep. I did not commit adultery. I did not kill. I prevailed as a man who keeps his head.

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A LIBRARY OF THE

WORLD'S BEST LITERATURE

ANCIENT AND MODERN

CHARLES DUDLEY WARNER

EDITOR

HAMILTON WRIGHT MABIE LUCIA GILBERT RUNKLE

GEORGE HENRY WARNER

ASSOCIATE EDITORS

FORTY-FIVE VOLUMES

VOL. I.

NEW YORK

THE INTERNATIONAL SOCIETY

MDCCCXCVI

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PREFACE

HE plan of this Work is simple, and yet it is novel. In its dis

tinctive features it differs from any compilation that has yet

been made. Its main purpose is to present to American households a mass of good reading. But it goes much beyond this. For in selecting this reading it draws upon all literatures of all time and of every race, and thus becomes a conspectus of the thought and intellectual evolution of man from the beginning. Another and scarcely less important purpose is the interpretation of this literature in essays by scholars and authors competent to speak with authority.

The title, "A Library of the World's Best Literature,” is strictly descriptive. It means that what is offered to the reader is taken from the best authors, and is fairly representative of the best literature and of all literatures. It may be important historically, or because at one time it expressed the thought and feeling of a nation, or because it has the character of universality, or because the readers of to-day will find it instructive, entertaining, or amusing. The Work aims to suit a great variety of tastes, and thus to commend itself as a household companion for any mood and any hour. There is no intention of presenting merely a mass of historical material, however important it is in its place, which is commonly of the sort that people recommend others to read and do not read themselves. It is not a library of reference only, but a library to be read. The selections do not represent the partialities and prejudices and cultivation of any one person, or of a group of editors even; but, under the necessary editorial supervision, the sober judgment of almost as many minds as have assisted in the preparation of these volumes. By this method, breadth of appreciation has been sought.

The arrangement is not chronological, but alphabetical, under the names of the authors, and, in some cases, of literatures and special

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