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THE SEVENTH BOOK:
THE PARTICULAR PART CONCLUDED.
OF POPULAR AND RECEIVED TENETS, CHIEFLY HISTORICAL, AND SOME
DEDUCED FROM THE HOLY SCRIPTURES,
That the Forbidden Fruit was an Apple.
That the forbidden fruit of Paradise was an apple, is commonly believed, confirmed by tradition, perpetuated by writings, verses, pictures; and some have been so bad prosodians, as from thence to derive the Latin word malum, because that fruit was the first occasion of evil: wherein notwithstanding determinations are presumptuous, and many I perceive are of another belief. For some have conceived it a vine;' in the mystery of whose fruit lay the expiation of the transgression. Goropius Becanus, reviving the conceit of Barcephas, peremptorily concludeth it to be the Indian fig-tree, and by a witty allegory labours to confirm the same. Again, some fruits pass under the name of Adam's apples, which in common acception admit not that appellation: the one described by Matthiolus under the name of Pomum Adami, a very fair fruit, and not unlike a citron, but somewhat rougher, chopt and crannied, vulgarly conceived the marks of Adam's teeth; another, the fruit of that plant which Serapion termeth Musa, but the eastern Christians
la vine.] By the fatal influence of and of Noah were exposed. See the whose fruit the nakedness both of Adam Targum of Jonathan.--Jef.
commonly the apples of Paradise; not resembling an apple in figure, and in taste a melon or cucumber. Which fruits although they have received appellations suitable unto the tradition, yet we cannot from thence infer they were this fruit in question. No more than Arbor vitæ, so commonly called, to obtain its name from the tree of life in Paradise, or Arbor Judæ, to be the same which supplied the gibbet unto Judas.
Again, there is no determination in the text; wherein is only particularised, that it was the fruit of a tree good for food, and pleasant unto the eye, in which regards many excel the apple : and therefore learned men do wisely conceive it inexplicable; and Philo puts determination unto despair, when he affirmeth the same kind of fruit was never produced since. Surely were it not requisite to have been concealed, it had not passed unspecified; nor the tree revealed which concealed their nakedness, and that concealed which revealed it; for in the same chapter mention is made of fig-leaves. And the like particulars, although they seem uncircumstantial, are oft set down in Holy Scripture ; so is it specified that Elias sat under a juniper tree, Absolom hanged by an oak, and Zaccheus got up into a sycamore.
And although, to condemn such indeterminables, unto him that demanded on what hand Venus was wounded, the philosopher thought it a sufficient resolution, to re-inquire upon what leg king Philip halted; and the Jews not undoubtedly resolved of the sciatica side of Jacob, do cautiously in their diet abstain from the sinews of both;s yet are there many nice particulars which may be authentically determined. That Peter cut off the right ear of Malchus, is beyond all doubt. That our Saviour eat the Passover in an upper
again, fc.) The fruit shops of Lon- actly what it was. The common Italian don exhibit a large kind of citron label. Pomo d'Adamo is a variety of Citrus led, Forbidden Fruit, respecting which, Limetta; that of Paris is a thick-skinned and the Pomum Adami of Matthiolus, I orange; and at least three other things have the following obliging and satisfac- have been so called. I do not think it tory notice from my friend Professor possible to ascertain what Matthiolus Lindley :-" The forbidden fruit of the meant, beyond the fact that it was a London markets is a variety of the Citrus of some kind." Citrus Decumana, and is in fact a 3 of both.] And this superstition besmall sort of shaddock. But as to the fooles them alike in both. -Wr. Pomum Adami, no one can make out ex
room, we may determine from the text. And some we may concede which the Scripture plainly defines not. That the dial of Ahaz“ was placed upon the west-side of the temple, we will not deny, or contradict the description of Adricomius; that Abraham's servant put his hand under his right thigh, we shall not question ; and that the thief on the right hand was saved, and the other on the left reprobated, to make good the method of the last judicial dismission, we are ready to admit. But surely in vain we enquire of what wood was Moses' rod, or the tree that sweetened the waters. Or, though tradition or human history might afford some light, whether the crown of thorns was made of paliurus; whether the cross of Christ were made of those four woods in the distich of Durantes,* or only of oak, according unto Lipsius and Goropius, we labour not to determine. For though hereof prudent symbols and pious allegories be made by wiser conceivers; yet common heads will fly unto superstitious applications, and hardly avoid miraculous or magical expectations.
Now the ground or reason that occasioned this expression by an apple, might be the community of this fruit, and which is often taken for any other. So the goddess of gardens is termed Pomona; so the proverb expresseth it, to give apples unto Alcinous; so the fruit which Paris decided was called an apple; so in the garden of Hesperides (which many conceive a fiction drawn from Paradise) we read of golden apples guarded by the dragon. And to speak strictly in this appellation, they placed it more safely than any other; for, beside the great variety of apples, the word in Greek comprehendeth oranges, lemons, citrons, quinces; and as
Pes Cedrus est, truncus Cupressus, Oliva supremum, Palmque transversum Christi sunt in cruce lignum.
4 dial of Ahaz.] Suggestions have “miraculous refraction." Is it not betbeen made respecting this, as well as ter to take the literal meaning, content some other miracles, which seem to me to believe that to omnipotence one mirato proceed too much on the principle of cle is no greater than another? endeavouring to lessen them, so as to 5 word in Greek.] Not only in Greeke bring them within the compass of belief. but in Latin also, all these are cald by Thus the dial only, not the sun, is sup- the very name of apple trees as Malus posed to have gone backwards; and that Aurantia, Citria, Cydonia, Granata.not really, but only apparently,--by a Wr.
Ruellius defineth,* such fruits as have no stone within, and a soft covering without; excepting the pomegranate; and will extend much further in the acception of Spigelius,f who comprehendeth all round fruits under the name of apples, not excluding nuts and plumbs.
It hath been promoted in some constructions from a passage in the Canticles, as it runs in the vulgar translation, Sub arbore malo suscitavi te, ibi corrupta est mater tua, ibi violata est genitrix tua. Which words notwithstanding parabolically intended, admit no literal inference, and are of little force in our translation, “I raised thee under an apple tree, there thy mother brought thee forth, there she brought thee forth that bare thee." So when, from a basket of summer fruits or apples, as the vulgar rendereth them, God by Amos foretold the destruction of his people, we cannot say they had any reference unto the fruit of Paradise, which was the destruction of man; but thereby was declared the propinquity of their desolation, and that their tranquillity was of no longer duration than those horary or soon decaying fruits of summer. Nor, when it is said in the same translation, Poma desiderii animæ tuæ discesserunt à te, “the apples that thy soul lusted after are departed from thee,” is there any allusion therein unto the fruit of Paradise; but thereby is threatened unto Babylon, that the pleasures and delights of their palate should forsake them. And we read in Pierius, that an apple was the hieroglyphick of love, and that the statua of Venus was made with one in her hand. So the little cupids in the figures of Philostratus || do play with apples in a garden; and there want not some who have symbolized the apple of Paradise unto such constructions.?
Since therefore after this fruit, curiosity fruitlessly enquireth, and confidence blindly determineth, we shall surcease our inquisition; rather troubled that it was tasted, than troubling ourselves in its decision; this only we observe, when things
• Ruel. De Stirpium Natura.
f Fructus borai.
+ Isagoge in rem Herbariam. * Cant. viii. || Philostrat. figure vi, De amoribus.
6 and will erlend, fc.) First added in 2nd edition.
7 So the little cupids, fc.) First added in 2nd edition.
are left uncertain, men will assure them by determination. Which is not only verified concerning the fruit, but the serpent that persuaded; many defining the kind or species thereof. So Bonaventure and Comestor affirm it was dragon, Engubinus a basilisk, Delrio a viper, and others a common snake.8 Wherein men still continue the delusion of the serpent, who having deceived Eve in the main, sets her posterity on work to mistake in the circumstance, and endeavours to propagate errors at any hand. And those he surely most desireth which concern either God or himself; for they dishonour God, who is absolute truth and goodness; but for himself, who is extremely evil, and the worst we can conceive, by aberration of conceit they may extenuate his depravity, and ascribe some goodness unto him.
That a Man hath one Rib less than a Woman.
That a man hath one rib less than a woman, is a common conceit, derived from the history of Genesis, wherein it stands delivered, that Eve was framed out of a rib of Adam; whence it is concluded the sex of men still wants that rib our father lost in Eve. And this is not only passant with the many, but was urged against Columbus in an anatomy of his at Pisa, where having prepared the skeleton of a woman that chanced to have thirteen ribs on one side, there arose a party that cried him down, and even unto oaths affirmed, this was the rib wherein a woman exceeded. Were this true, it would ocularly silence that dispute out of which side Eve was framed; it would determine the opinion of Oleaster, that she was made
snake.] Itt seemes to bee none of noe reference to this storye, wittily cals these but rather that species which Sca- (Exercitat. 226,$,) šyxeavgúmous, liger, the great secretary of nature, with wherof see [before, pp. 95, 6, 7.]— Wr.