The Worship of Priapus  

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"In 1786, [ Richard Payne Knight ] published a limited edition of a treatise, entitled, "An Account of the Remains of the Worship of Priapus, lately existing at Isernia, in the Kingdom of Naples, etc." ; to which is added a Discourse on the Worship of Priapus, and its Connection with the Mystic Theology of the Ancients." Although the subject was extraordinary and prohibited from common conversation as indelicate, Mr. Knight had discussed it with moderation and remarkable caution, giving little occasion to prudishness or pruriency, or even to " prurient prudes " to resort to his pages for their accustomed aliment. He added engravings, however, from coins, medals, and other remains of ancient art, which he had collected ; all of which were genuine and authenticated, but were made a handle by which to misrepresent and vilify him. Having been elected to Parliament, a member who was opposed to him in politics, took the occasion in debate to assert that he had written an improper book. Mr. Knight, long before, in consequence of the clamor and of the calumny to which he was subjected, had suppressed a portion of the edition, and destroyed whatever copies came in his way. But indecency did not constitute the offense of the book. Facts were disclosed in regard to the arcana of religion, which the initiated had before sedulously kept vailed from popular knowledge. Mr. Knight had only endeavored to present to scholars a comprehensive view of the origin and nature of a worship once general in the Eastern world ; but it was easy to perceive that many of the elements of that worship had been adopted and perpetuated in the modern faith by which it had been superseded. A philosophical reasoner can not perceive why it should be otherwise. Opinions and institutions are not revolutionised on a day, but are slowly modified by reflection and experience."--An Inquiry Into the Symbolical Language of Ancient Art and Mythology (1818) by Alexander Wilder

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The Worship of Priapus is a book by Richard Payne Knight, published in 1786. The book sought to recover the importance of ancient phallic cults. Knight's apparent preference for ancient sacred eroticism over Judeo-Christian puritanism led to many attacks on him as an infidel and as a scholarly apologist for libertinism. This ensured the persistent distrust of the religious establishment. The central claim of The Worship of Priapus was that an international religious impulse to worship ‘the generative principle’ was articulated through genital imagery, and that this imagery has persisted into the modern age. In some ways the book was the first of many later attempts to argue that Pagan ideas had persisted within Christianity, a view that would eventually crystalise into the neo-Pagan movement over a century later.

The book was re-edited in 1957 by the Julian Press with an introduction by Ashley Montagu.

The book cites D'Hancarville's Recherches sur les arts de la Grèce.

See also

priapus, worship

Full text

This is the full text of an 18th century edition of The Worship of Priapus by Richard Payne Knight.

The full text presented at this page is a copy from[1]. A proofread version can be found at Sacred Texts[2]

RICHARD PAYNE KNIGHT, oneofthemoft diftinguifhed patrons of art and learning in Eng- land during his time, a fcholar of great attainments, an eminent antiquarian, member of the Radical party in Parliament, and a writer of great ability, was born at Wormefley Grange, in Herefordfhire, in 1750. From an early age he devoted himfelf to the ftudy of ancient literature, antiquities, and mythology. A large portion of his inherited fortune was expended in the colledion of antiq- uities, efpecially, ancient coins, medals, and bronzes. His col- leftion, which was continued until his death in 1820, was be- queathed to the Britifh Mufeum, and accepted for that inftitution by a fpecial ad of Parliament. Its value was eftimated at /'50.000. Among his works are an Inquiry into the Principles of Tajie ; Analytical EJfay on the Greek Alphabet ; The Symbolical Language of Ancient Art ; and three poems; 'The Landfcape, the Progrefs of Civil Society, and The Romance of Alfred.

Tht IVor/hip of Priapus v/a.s printed in 1786, for diftribution by the Dilettanti Society, with which body the author was


adively identified. This fociety embraced in its memberfhip Tome of the moft diftinguifhed fcholars in England, among others the Duke of Norfolk, Sir Jofeph Banks, Sir William Hamilton, Sir George Beaumont, the Marquis of Abercorn, Lord Charle- mont. Lord Dundas, Horace Walpole, and men of equal prom- inence.

The bold utterances of Mr. Knight on a fubject which until that time had been entirely tabooed, or had been treated in a way to hide rather than to difcover the truth, jfhocked the fenfi- bilities of the higher clafTes of Englifh fociety, and the ministers and members of the various denominations of the Chriftian world. Rather than endure the ftorm of criticifm, aroufed by the publication, he fupprefTed during his lifetime all the copies of the book he could recall, confequently it became very fcarce, and continued fo for nearly a hundred years.

In 1865 the work was reprinted, with an eflay added, carrying the inveftigation further, fhowing the prevalence during the mid- dle ages of beliefs and praftices fimilar tothofe defcribed in Knight's effay, only modified by the changed condition of fociety. The fupplementary eflay is now generally conceded to have been the work of the eminent author and antiquarian, Thomas Wright;^ aflifted by John Camden Hotten, the publifher of the 1865 edition. In their work they had the benefit of the vaft additions made during this century to the literature of the fubjeil, and of

' Perhaps no Englifhman of modern times, or of any time, has intelligently treated fo many different departments of literary refearch : Archaeology, Art, Bibliography, Chriftianity, Cuftoms, Heraldry, Literary Hiftory, Philology, Topography and Travels, are among the topics illuftrated by the learning, zeal and induftryofMr. Thomas Wright. — S. Austin Allibone.


the difcoveries of objects of antiquity at Herculaneum and Pom- peii, alfo in France, Germany, Belgium, England, Ireland, and in fad in nearly every country in Europe, illuftrating the fubjed they were inveftigating.

The numerous illuftrations are engraved from antique coins, medals, ftone carvings, etc., preferved in the Payne Knight col- ledion in the Britirti Mufeum, and from other objeds difcovered in England and on the continent, fince the firft efTay was written. Thefe are only to be found in mufeums and private collections fcattered over Europe, and are pradically inacceflibleto the ftudent; they are here engraved and fully defcribed.

The edition of 1865 was of a limited number of copies, and was foon exhaufted. When a copy occafionally appears in the audion room, or in the hands of a bookfeller, it brings a large advance on the original high publifhed price. The prefent edition, an exad reproduction of that of 1865, but correding fome manifeft mifprints, is publifhed in the intereft of fcience and fcholarihip. At a time when fo many learned inveftigators are endeavoring to trace back religious beliefs and pradices to their origin, it would feem that this is a branch of the fubjed which {hould not be ignored. The hiftory of religions has been ftudied with more zeal and fuccefs during the nineteenth century, than in all the ages which preceded it, and this book has now an intereft fifty fold greater than when originally publifhed.

OSiober, 1894.


^^f]HE following pages are offered fimply as a con- tribution to fcience. The progrefs of human fociety (has, in different ages, prefented abundance of hor- _ rors and abundance of vices, which, in treating

hiftory popularly, we are obliged to pafs over gently, and often to conceal ; but, neverthelefs, if we negled or fupprefs thefe fads altogether, we injure the truth of hiftory itfelf, almoft in the fame manner as we fhould injure a man's health by deflroying fome of the nerves or mufcles of his body. The fuperflitions which are treated in the two effays which form the prefent volume, formed a very important element in the working of the fecial frame in former ages, — in fad, during a very great part of the exiflence of man in this world, they have had much influence inwardly and outwardly on the charader and fpirit of fociety itfelf, and there- fore it is neceffary for the hiflorian to underftand them, and a part of the duties of the archaeologifl to invefligate them. The DifTertation by Richard Payne Knight is tolerably well known —


at leaft by name — to bibliographers and to antiquaries, as a book of very confiderable learning, and at the fame time, as one which has become extremely rare, and which, therefore, can only be obtained occafionally at a very high price. It happened that, in a time when the violence of political feelings ran very high, the author, who was a member of the Houfe of Commons, belonged to the liberal party, and his book was fpitefully mifreprefented, with the defign of injuring his charader. We know the unjuft abufe which was lavifhed upon him by Mathias, in his now little- read fatire, the "Purfuits of Literature." Some of the Conti- nental archaeologifts had written on kindred fubjeds long before the time of Payne Knight.

It was thought, therefore, that a new edition of this book, pro- duced in a manner to make it more acceflible to fcholars, would not be unacceptable. Payne Knight's defign was only to inveftigate the origin and meaning of a once extenfively popular worfhip. The hiftory of it is, indeed, a wide fubjed, and muft include all branches of the human race, in a majority of which it is in full force at the prefent day, and even in our own more highly civilized branch it has continued to exift to a far more recent period than we might be inclined to fuppofe. It is the objed; of the Efiay which has been written for the prefent volume — of which it forms more than one half — to inveftigate the exiftence of thefe superftitions among ourfelves, to trace them, in fadl, through the middle ages of Weftern Europe, and their influence on the hiftory of mediaeval and on the formation of modern fociety, and to place in the hands of hiftorical fcholars



fuch of their monuments as we have been able to colled:. It is hoped that, thus compofed, the prefent volume will prove acceptable to the clafs of readers to whom it fpecially addreffes itfelf

It muft not be fuppofed or expeded that this EfTay on the mediaeval part of the fubjed can be perfed. A large majority of the fads and monuments of mediaeval phallic worfhip have long perifhed, but many, hitherto unknown, remain ftill to be col- leded, and it may be hoped that the prefent EfTay will lead eventually to much more complete refearches as to the exiftence and influence of this worfhip in Weftern Europe during mediaeval times. Notes of fuch fuperjftitions are continually turning up unexpededly ; and we may mention as an example, that a copy of Payne Knight's treatife now before us contains a marginal note in pencil by a former pofleflx)r, Richard Turner, a colledor of curious books formerly refiding at Grantham in Lincolnfhire, in the following words: — "In 1850, I met with a Zingari, or Gypfy, who had an amulet beautifully carved in ivory, which fhe wore round her neck; fhe faid it was worth 30/., and fhe would not part with it on any account. She came from Florence. It was the Lingham and the Yoni united." This is curious as furnifhing apparent evidence of the relationfhip between the gipfies of Weftern Europe and India.

London, September, 1865.


REFACE to this Edition, Preface to the Edition of 1865, Contents ..... Lill of Plates, with references to explanatory text

Account of the Remains of the Worship of Priapus

Letter from Sir William Hamilton .

Lettera da Ifernia, 1780 .

On the Worfhip of Priapus, by R. Payne Knight

Page i


ix xiii



13 — J13

On the Worship of the Generative Powers during the Middle Ages of Western Europe :

Abundant evidences of Phallic worfliip in the Roman colonies Aix, in Provence . Nimes, and its Roman Amphitheatre Xanten, in Hefle, and Antwerp Britain, and its Priapic remains The Teutonic Venus, Friga Fafcinum, and its magical influences Scotland, and its Phallic celebrations Phallic figures on public buildings Ireland, and its Shelah-na-Gig Reprefentation of the female organ exhibited in various countries Horfeflioes nailed to ilable-doors, a remain of the Shelah-na-Gig exhi bition .......

The ancient god Priapus becomes a faint in the Middle Ages .


117 119 I 20 I 22 122 I 26 128 130 J31 132 134

139 139


Marriage offerings to Priapus

Antwerp, and its patron faint Ters

M. Forgeais' coUertion of phallic amulets .

The *' Fig," and its meanings

The German Scrat, and the Gaulifli Dufii .

Robin Goodfellow ....

Liberalia and Floralia feftivities

Eafter, and hot-crofs-buns

Heaving and lifting cuftoms at Eafter . ,

May-day feftivities, and the May-pole

Bonfires ....••

St. John's, or Midfummer-eve

Mother Bunch's inftruftion to maidens

Plants and flowers connefted with phallic worftiip .

The mandrake .....

Lady Godiva, the Shrewfbury fhow, and the Guild feftival at F

Pagan rites of the early Chriftians

Gnoftics, Manichaeans, Nicolaits, followers of Florian, &c

The Bulgarians, and their praftices

Walter Mapes' account of the Patarini, and their fecret rites

The Waldenfes and Cathari

Popular oaths and phallic worfhip .

Secret fociety in Orleans for celebrating obfcene rites

The Stedingers of Germany, and their fecret ceremonies


The Knights Templars :

Charges brought againft them

Spitting on the Crofs, and the denial of Chrift

The Kifs ....

Intercourfe with women prohibited

The Cat and Idol worftiip

Baflbmet, or Baphomet

Von Hammer's defcription of the Templars' images or ♦' idol "

The Witches' Sabbath :

Thelaft form which the Priapeia and Liberalia aflumed in Weftern Europe 206



Trial of witches at Arras, in France

Sprenger and others on witchcraft in the fifteenth century

Bodin's defcription of the Sabbath ceremonies

Pierre de Lancre's full account of the Witches' Sabbath

Pidorial reprefentation of the ceremonies .

Similarity of the proceedings of the Sabbath to thofc of the Templars

Intermixture of Priapic orgies with the Chriftian rites and ceremonies

Traces of phallic worfhip ftill exifting on the weftern fhores of Ireland

Page 207 209 210 z\ 2 245 246

H7 248




Note. — As frequent references are made to fame of the engraved figures in different parts of the work, it was found impofjible to infert the illuftrations always oppo- fite the explanatory text. The plates, therefore, have heen placed^ independently of the text, but in regular order. The following lijl, however, zvill refer the reader to thofe pages which explain the objeSls drawn : —


I. Ex VoTi OF Wax, from Isernia .

II. Ancient and Modern Amulets :

Figure i . . .

2 .

3 • • •

III. Antique Gems and Greek Medals :

Figure i


3 4 5 6,7

IV. Medals possessed by Payne Knight :

Figure i


3 4


V. Figures of Pan, Gems, &c Figure i


3 4 VI. The Tauric Diana

Defcribed on Page

• 3. 7

4, 28, 90 28, 88



23, 90


33. 46 46,85

. 46

21, 33

33. 34. 35, 89

33, 46

• 38

• 73

37,42, 54 42 41

73 77





I on Page


Goat and Satyr, Greek Sculpture



Bronze Statue of Ceres



Coins and Medals :

Figure i . . . •

. 29










80, 81


81, 83







35. 79






Systrum, with Various Medals :

Figure i . . . .

. 67


' 78,

79, 80




• 96


. 83








Sculpture from Elephanta



Indian Temple, showing the Lingam


56, 61


Celtic Temple, Greek Medals, &c :

Figure i, 2, 3,

• 55


. 64



6, 7



. » 60

9, ID

• 59

1 1

. 58


Portable Temple dedicated to Priapus or th

E "Lingam"



Temple Dedicated to Bacchus, at Puzzuoli :

Figure i .

64, 65

2 . . . .

64, 66


. 66












Ornament from Puzzuoli Temple : Figure i .

2 .

Ornament from Puzzuoli Temple

Egyptian Figures and Ornaments : Figure i .

2 .

3 ■

Egyptian Figures and Ornaments : Figure i


3 4 5 6, 7

The Lotus, with Medals of Melita, &c : Figure i .

2 .

3 .

Bacchus, Medals of Camarina, Syracuse, &c Figure i .

2, 3 4, 5, 6

7 .

Statue of a Bull at Tanjore

Tiger at the Breast of a Nymph

Sculpture from Elephanta (^See P/ate XI.)

Roman Sculptures from Nimes : Figure i , 2

3 •

4 .

Monument found at N^mes in 1825

Phallic Figures, &c. found in England : Figure i, 2, 3, 4 .

Phallic Monuments found in Scotland, &c Figure i . 2, 3


Defcribed on F\ige




5', 87, 89

50, 87, 89


87, 88 89

54 34, 89 87,89


50 88






47, 48

1 20

1 21

122, 136

119, 121

'23 I 24




Plate. XXIX. Shelah-na-Gig Monuments : Figure i, 2, 3, 4

XXX. Shelah-na-Gig Monuments : Figure i, 2, 3, .

XXXI. Venus of the Vandals, Bronze Images, &c : Figure i, 2, 3, 4, 5

6 .....

XXXII. Ornaments from the Church of San Fedele Figure i, 2, 3 .

XXXIII. Phallic Leaden Tokens from the Seine :

XXXIV. Leaden Ornaments from the Seine :

Figure i ....

2, 3, 4, 5

XXXV. Amulets, &c. of Gold and Lead : Figure i, 2, 3, 4, 5

XXXVI. Robin Goodfellow, Phallic Amulets, &c Figure i 2 3 4 5

XXXVII. Priapic Illustrations from Old Ballads Figure \ ...

2 ...

XXXVIII. "Idol" of the Knights Templars

XXXIX. Sculptures of the Templars' Mysteries : Figure 1 ....

2 ....

3 ....

4 • • • •. XL. The Witches' Sabbath, from De Lancre, 161 3

Defcribed on


. 133 to


. 133 to


136 to



137 to




, ,




148 148 121

137 153




199 to 203

200 to 203 200 to 204 199 to 204

245, 246








ISERNIJ, in the Kingdom of NAPLES:


One from Sir William Hamilton, K.B., His Majefty's Minifter at the Court of Naples, to Sir Joseph Banks, Bart., Prefident of the Royal Society.

And the other from a Perfon refiding at Ifernia :



And its Connexion with the myftic Theology of the Ancients.

By R. P. KNIGHT, Efq.


Printed by T. Spilsbury, Snowhill.




Naples, Dec. 30, 1781,

lAVING laft year made a curious difcovery, that in a Province of this Kingdom, and not fifty miles from its Capital, a fort of devotion is ftill paid to Pria- pus, the obfcene Divinity of the Ancients (though under another denomination), I thought it a circum- ftance worth recording ; particularly, as it offers a frefh proof of the fimilitude of the Popifh and Pagan Religion, fo well obferved by Dr. Middleton, in his celebrated Letter from Rome: and there- fore I mean to depofit the authentic^ proofs of this aflertion in the Britifh Mufeum, when a proper opportunity fhall offer. In the mean time I fend you the following account, which, I flatter myfelf, will amufe you for the prefent, and may in future ferve to illuflrate thofe proofs.

I had long ago difcovered, that the women and children of the lower clafs, at Naples, and in its neighbourhood, frequently wore,

' A fpecimen of each of the ex-votioi wzx, with the original letter from Ifernia. See the Ex-voti, Plate i.


as an ornament of drefs, a fort of Amulets, (which they imagine to be a prefervative from the mal occhii, evil eyes, or enchantment) exadly fimilar to thofe which were worn by the ancient Inhabitants of this Country for the very fame purpofe, as likewife for their fuppofed invigorating influence ; and all of which have evidently a relation to the Cult of Priapus. Struck with this conformity in ancient and modern fuperfliition, I made a colledion of both the ancient and modern Amulets of this fort, and placed them together in the Britifh Mufeum, where they remain. The modern Amulet mofl: in vogue reprefents a hand clinched, with the point of the thumb thruft betwixt the index and middle^ finger; the next is a fhell ; and the third is a half-moon. Thefe Amulets (except the fhell, which is ufually worn in its natural fl:ate) are mofl: commonly made of filver, but fometimes of ivory, coral, amber, cryftal, or fome curious gem, or pebble. We have a proof of the hand above defcribed having a connexion with Priapus, in a mofl elegant fmall idol of bronze of that Divinity, now in the Royal Mufeum of Portici, and which was found in the ruins of Her- culaneum : it has an enormous Phallus, and, with an arch look and gefliure, ftretches out its right hand in the form above men- tioned;^ and which probably was an emblem of confummation : and as a further proof of it, the Amulet which occurs mofl: fre- quently amongft thofe of the Ancients (next to that which reprefents the Ample Priapus), is fuch a hand united with the Phallus ; ot which you may fee feveral fpecimens in my colle6lion in the Britifli Mufeum. One in particular, I recoiled;, has alfo the half- moon joined to the hand and Phallus ; which half-moon is fuppofed to have an allufion to the female menfes. The fhell, or concha veneris.

1 See Plate ii.. Fig. i.

2 This elegant little figure is engraved in the firft volume of the Bronzes of the Herculaneum.


is evidently an emblem of the female part of generation. It is very natural then to fuppofe, that the Amulets reprefenting the Phallus alone, fo vifibly indecent, may have been long out of ufe in this civilized capital ; but I have been aflured, that it is but very lately that the Priefts have put an end to the wearing of fuch Amulets in Calabria, and other diftant Provinces of this Kingdom.

A new road having been made laft year from this Capital to the Province of Abruzzo, paffing through the City of Ifernia (an- ciently belonging to the Samnites, and very populous^), a perfon ot liberal education, employed in that work, chanced to be at Ifernia juft at the time of the celebration of the Feaft of the modern Priapus, St. Cofmo ; and having been ftruck with the Angularity of the ceremony, fo very fimilar to that which attended the ancient Cult of the God of the Gardens, and knowing my tafte for anti- quities, told me of it. From this Gentleman's report, and from what I learnt on the fpot from the Governor of Ifernia himfelf, having gone to that city on purpofe in the month of February laft, I have drawn up the following account, which I have reafon to believe is ftridly true. I did intend to have been prefent at the Feaft of St. Cofmo this year; but the indecency of this ceremony having probably tranfpired, from the country's having been more frequented fince the new road was made, orders have been given, that the Great 'To^ of the Saint fhould no longer be expofed. The fol- lowing is the account of the Fete of St. Cofmo and Damiano, as it adually was celebrated at Ifernia, on the confines of Abruzzo, in the Kingdom of Naples, fo late as in the year of our Lord 1780.

On the 27th of September, at Ifernia, one of the moft ancient

^ The aftual population of Ifernia, according to the Governor's account, is 5 1 56. 2 See the Italian letter, printed at the end of this, from which it appears the modern Priapi were fo called at Ifernia.


cities of the Kingdom of Naples, fituated in the Province called the Contado di Molife, and adjoining to Abruzzo, an annual Fair is held, which lafts three days. The fituation of this Fair is on a rifing ground, between two rivers, about half a mile from the town of Ifernia; on the moft elevated part of which there is an ancient church, with a veftibule. The architecture is of the ftyle of the lower ages; and it is faid to have been a church and convent be- longing to the Benedidine Monks in the time of their poverty. This church is dedicated to St. Cofmus and Damianus. One of the days of the Fair, the relicks of the Saints are expofed, and afterwards carried in proceffion from the cathedral of the city to this church, attended by a prodigious concourfe of people. In the city, and at the fair, ex-voH of wax, reprefenting the male parts of generation, of various dimenlions, fome even of the length of a palm, are publickly offered to fale. There are alfo waxen vows, that reprefent other parts of the body mixed with them ; but of thefe there are few in comparifon of the number of the Priapi. The devout diftributers of thefe vows carry a bafket full of them in one hand, and hold a plate in the other to receive the money, crying aloud, "St. Cofmo and Damiano!" If you afk the price of one, the anfwer is, pin ci metti^ piu meriti : " The more you give, the more's the merit." In the veftibule are two tables, at each of which one of the canons of the church prefides, this crying out, ^ijt riceveno le Mijfe^ e Litanie : " Here MafTes and Lita- nies are received;" and the other, ^ifi riceveno li Voti : " Here the Vows are received." The price of a Mafs is fifteen Neapolitan grains, and of a Litany five grains. On each table is a large bafon for the reception of the different offerings. The Vows are chiefiy prefented by the female fex ; and they are feldom fuch as reprefent legs, arms, &;c., but moft commonly the male parts of generation. The perfon who was at this fete in the year 1780, and who gave me this account (the authenticity of every article of which has fince


been fully confirmed to me by the Governor of Ifernia), told me alfo, that he heard a woman fay, at the time flie prefented a Vow, like that which is prefented in Plate 1. Fig. i., Santo Cojmo bene- detto, coji lo voglio : " Bleffed St. Cofmo, let it be like this ;" another, St. Cojimo, a te mi raccommendo: " St. Cofmo, I recommend myfelf to you ;" and a third, St. Cojimo^ ti ringrazio : " St. Cofmo, I thank you." The Vow is never prefented without being accompanied by a piece of money, and is always kifled by the devotee at the moment of prefentation.

At the great altar in the church, another of its canons attends to give the holy undion, with the oil of St. Cofmo ;^ which is pre- pared by the fame receipt as that of the Roman Ritual, with the addition only of the prayer of the Holy Martyrs, St. Cofmus and Damianus. Thofe who have an infirmity in any of their members, prefent themfelves at the great altar, and uncover the member affeded (not even excepting that which is moft frequently repre- fented by the ex-voti) ; and the reverend canon anoints it, faying, Per inter cejfionem heati Cqfmi, liberet te ah omni malo. Amen.

The ceremony finifhes by the canons of the church dividing the fpoils, both money and wax, which muft be to a very confiderable amount, as the concourfe at this fete is faid to be prodigioufly numerous.

The oil of St. Cofmo is in high repute for its invigorating quality, when the loins, and parts adjacent, are anointed with it. No lefs than 1400 flafks of that oil were either expended at the altar in undions, or charitably diftributed, during this fete in the year 1780 ; and as it is ufual for every one, who either makes ufe

' The cure of difeafes by oil is likewife of ancient date ; for Tertullian tells us, that a Chriftian, called Proculus, cured the Emperor Severus of a certain dillemper by the ufe of oil ; for which fervice the Emperor kept Proculus, as long as he lived, in his palace.


of the oil at the altar, or carries off a flalk of it, to leave an alms for St. Cofmo, the ceremony of the oil becomes likewife a very lucrative one to the canons of the church.

I am. Sir, With great truth and regard.

Your moft obedient humble Servant,

William Hamilton.


Nell* Anno, 1780.

N Ifernia CittL\ Sannitica, oggi della Provincia del Contado di Molife, ogni Anno li 27 Settembre vi e una Fiera della clafTe delle perdonanze (cofi dette negl' Abruzzi li gran mercati, e fiere non di lifta) : Ouefta fiera fi fa fopra d'una Collinetta, che fta in mezzo a due fiumi ; diftante mezzo miglio da Ifernia, dove nella parte piu elevata vi e un antica Chiefa con un veftibulo, archi- tettura de' bafli tempi, e che fi dice efler ftata Chiefa, e Moniftero de P. P. Benedettini, quando erano poveri ? La Chiefa e dedicata ai Santi Cosmo e Damiano, ed e Grancia del Reverendiffimo Capi- tolo. La Fiera e di 50 baracche a fabrica, ed i Canonici affittano le baracche, alcune 10, altre 15, al piu 20, carlini Tuna; affittano ancora per tre giorni 1' ofteria fatta di fabbrica docati 20 ed i comeftibili folo benedetti. Vi e un Eremita della fteffa umanita del fii F. Gland guardiano del Monte Vefuvio, cittato con rifpetto dall' Ab. Richard. La fiera dura tre giorni. II Maeftro di fiera 6 il Capitolo, ma commette al Governatore Regio ; e quefta alza bandiera con I'imprefa della Citta, che e la ftefla imprefa de P. P. Celeftini. Si fa una Proceffione con le Reliquie dei Santi, ed efce dalla Catte- drale,eva alia Chiefa fudetta; mac pocodevota. II giorno della fefta, si per la Citt£l,come nellacollinetta vi e un gran concorfo d' Abitatori



del Motefe, Malnarde, ed altri Monti vicini, che la ftranezza delli veftimenti delle Donne, fembra, a chi non ha gl' occhi avvezzi ave- derle, il pui bel ridotto di mafcherate. Le Donne della Terra del Gallo fono vere figlie dell' Ordine Serafico Cappuccino, veftendo come li Zoccolanti in materia, e forma. Puelle di Scanno Sembrano Greche di Scio. Puelle di Carovilli Armene. Puelle delle Pefche, e Carpinone tengono ful capo alcuni panni roffi con ricamo di filo bianco, difegno ful gufto Etrufco, che a pochi pafTi fembra merletto d'Inghilterra. Vi e fra quefte Donne vera belezza, e diverfita grande nel veftire, anche fra due popolazioni viciniffime, ed un attaccamento particolare di certe popolazioni ad un colore, ed altre ad altro. L' abito e diftinto nelle Zitelle, Maritate, Vedove, e Donne di piacere?

Nella fiera ed in Citta vi fono molti divoti, che vendono mem- bri virili di cera di diverfe forme, e di tutte le grandezze, fino ad un palmo ; e mifchiate vi fono ancora gambe, braccia, e faccie ; ma poche fono quefte. Quel li vendono tengono un cefto, ed un piatto ; li membri rotti fono nel cefto, ed il piatto ferve per racco- gliere il danaro d'elemoiina. Gridano S. Cosmo e Damiano. Chi € fprattico domanda, quanto un vale ? Rifpondono^zY/ cimetti^piii meriti. Avanti la Chiefa nel veftibolo del Tempio vi fono due tavole, ciafcunacon fedia, dove prefiede un Canonico, e fuol' eftere uno il Primicerio, e I'altro Arciprete ; grida uno qui Jt ricevono le Mejfe^ e Litanie : V^hrOy qui ft ricevono li voti ; fopra delle tavole in ogn' una vi e un bacile, che ferve per raccogliere li membri di cera, che mai fi prefentano foli, ma con denaro, come ft e pratticato fempre in tutte le prefentazioni di membri, ad eccezzione di quelli deir Ifola di Ottaiti. Quefta divozione e tutta quafi delle Donne, e fono pochiftimi quelli, o quelle che prefentano gambe, e braccia, mentre tutta la gran fefta s' aggira a profitto de membri della gene- razione. lo ho intefo dire ad una donna. Santo Cojimo henedetto^ coji lo voglio. Altre dicevano, Santo CoJimo a te mi raccommando :


altre, Santo Co/mo ringrazio ; e quefto c quello oflerval, e fi prat- tica nel veftibulo, baciando ogn 'una il voto che prefente.

Dentro la chiefa nell' altare magglore un canonico fa le flmte unzioni con 1' olio di S. Cofimo. La ricetta di queft' olio u la fteffa del Rituale Romano, con 1' aggiuntadell' orazionedelli SS. Martiri, Cofimo e Damiano. Si prefentano all' Altare gl' Infermi d' ogni male, fnudano la parte offefa, anche 1' originale della copia di cera, ed il Canonico ungendoli dice. Per intercejfionem beati Cqfmi, liberet te ah omni malo. Amen.

Finifce la fefta con dividerfi li Canonici la cera, ed il denaro, e con ritornar gravide molte Donne fterili maritate, a profitto della popolazione delle Provincie ; e fpeffo la grazia s' entende fenza meraviglia, alle Zitelle, e Vedove, che per due notti hanno dormito, alcune nella Chiefa de' P. P. Zoccolanti,ed altre delli Capuccini, non eflendoci in Ifernia Cafe locande per alloggiare tutto il numero di gente, che concorre : onde li Frati, ajutando ai Preti, danno le Chiefe alle Donne, ed i Portici agl' Uomini ; e cofi Divifi fucce- dendo gravidanze non deve dubitar si, che fi a opera tutta miraco- lofa, e di divozione.


L' olio non folo ferve per 1' unzione che fa il Canonico, ma anche fi difpenfa in piccioliifime caraffine, e ferve per ungerfi li lombo a chi ha male a quefta parte. In queft' anno 1780. fi fono date par divozione 1400 caraffine, e fi c confumato mezzo Stajo d' olio. Chi prende una caraffina da 1' olemofina.


Li Canonici che fiedono nel Veftibulo prendono denaro d' Ele- mofina per Mefte, e per Litanie. Le MefTea grana 1 5. e le Litanie a grana 5.


NOTA III. Li foreftieri alloggiano non folo fra li Cappuccini e Zoccolanti, ma anche nell' Eramo di S. Cofmo. Le Donne che dormono nelle chiefe de' P. P. Sudetti fono guardate dalli Guardiani, Vicarj e Padri piu di merito, e quelli dell' Eremo fono in cura dell' Eremita, divife anche dai Proprj Mariti, e fi fanno fpeflb miracoli fenza incomodo delli fanti.

Le non le gufta, quando 1' avra letta Tornera bene fame una baldoria : Che le daranno almen qualche diletto Le Monachine quando vanno a letto.


EN, confidered colledively, are at all times the fame animals, employing the fame organs, and endowed with the fame faculties : their pafTions, prejudices, and conceptions, will of courfe be formed upon the fame internal principles, although'direded to various ends, and modified in various ways, by the variety of external cir- cumftances operating upon them. Education and fcience may cor- red, reftrain, and extend ; but neither can annihilate or create : they may turn and embellifh thecurrents ; but can neither ftop nor enlarge the fprings, which, continuing to flow with a perpetual and equal tide, return to their ancient channels, when the caufes that perverted them are withdrawn.

The firft principles of the human mind will be more diredly brought into adion, in proportion to the earneftnefs and afleftion with which it contemplates its objed ; and paffion and prejudice will acquire dominion over it, in proportion as its firfl: principles are more direcflly brought into aftion. On all common fubjedls, this dominion of paffion and prejudice is reftrained by the evidence of fenfe and perception ; but, when the mind is led to the contemplation of things beyond its comprehenfion, all fuch refliraints vanifh : reafon has then


nothing to oppofe to the phantoms of imagination, which acquire terrors from their obfcurity, and didate uncontrolled, becaufe un- known. Such is the cafe in all religious fubjeds, which, being beyond the reach of fenfe or reafon, are always embraced or rejeded with violence and heat. Men think they know, becaufe they are fure they feel ; and are firmly convinced, becaufe ftrongly agitated. Hence proceed that hafte and violence with which devout perfons of all religions condemn the rites and dodrines of others, and the furious zeal and bigotry with which they maintain their own ; while perhaps, if both were equally well underftood, both would be found to have the fame meaning, and only to differ in the modes of con- veying it.

Of all the profane rites which belonged to the ancient poly- theifm, none were more furiouily inveighed againft by the zealous propagators of the Chriftian faith, than the obfcene ceremonies per- formed in the worfhip of Priapus ; which appeared not only contrary to the gravity and fandity of religion, but fubverfive of the firft principles of decency and good order in fociety. Even the form itfelf, under which the god was reprefented, appeared to them a mockery of all piety and devotion, and more fit to be placed in a brothel than a temple. But the forms and ceremonials of a religion are not always to be underfliood in their dired and obvious fenfe ; but are to beconfideredas fymbolical reprefentations of fome hidden meaning, which may be extremely wife and jufi:, though the fymbols themfelves, to thofe who know not their true fignification, may appear in the highefl: degree abfurd and extravagant. It has often happened, that avarice and fuperfi:ition have continued thefe fym- bolical reprefentations for ages after their original meaning has been lofl: and forgotten ; when they muft of courfe appear non- fenfical and ridiculous, if not impious and extravagant.

Such is the cafe with the rite now under confideration, than which


nothing can be more monftrous and indecent, if confidered in its plain and obvious meaning, or as a part of the Chriftian worfliip ; but which will be found to be a very natural fymbol of a very natural and philofophical fyftem of religion, if confidered according to its original ufe and intention.

What this was, I fhall endeavour in the following fheets to explain as concifelv and clearly as poffible. Thofe who wifh to know how generally the fymbol, and the religion which it reprefented, once prevailed, will confult the great and elaborate work of Mr. D'Han- carville, who, with infinite learning and ingenuity, has traced its progrefs over the whole earth. My endeavour will be merely to fhow, from what original principles in the human mind it was firft adopted, and how it was connected with the ancient theology : mat- ters of verv curious inquiry, which will ferve, better perhaps than any others, to illuftrate that truth, which ought to be prefent in every man's mind when he judges of the adions of others, that in morals^ as well as phyjics^ there is no ejfe£l without an adequate cauje. If in doing this, I frequently find it neceflary to differ in opinion with the learned author above-mentioned, it will be always with the ut- moft deference and refpedl ; as it is to him that we are indebted for the onlv reafonable method of explaining the emblematical works of the ancient artifts.

Whatever the Greeks and Egyptians meant by the fymbol in queftion, it was certainly nothing ludicrous or licentious; of which we need no other proof, than its having been carried in folemn proceffion at the celebration of thofe myfteries in which the firft principles of their religion, the knowledge of the God of Nature, the Firft, the Supreme, the Intelledtual,^ were preferved free from the vulgar fuperftitions, and communicated, under the ftridleft oaths of

1 Plut. de Is. et Os.


fecrecy, to the iniated (initiated) ; who were obliged to purify them- felves, prior to their initiation, by abftaining from venery, and all impure food.^ We may therefore be aflured, that no impure mean- ing could be conveyed by this fymbol ; but that it reprefented fome fundamental principle of their faith. What this was, it is difficult to obtain any dired information, on account of the fecrecy under which this part of their religion was guarded. Plutarch tells us, that the Egyptians reprefented Ofiris with the organ of generation ered, to fhow his generative and prolific power : he alfo tells us, that Ofiris was the same Deity as the Bacchus of the Greek Mytho- logy ; who was alfo the fame as the firft begotten Love (E/jw? 7r/3a)T07oi^o9) of Orpheus and Hefiod.^ This deity is celebrated by the ancient poets as the creator of all things, the father of gods and men;" and it appears, by the pafi"age above referred to, that the organ of generation was the fymbol of his great charaaerifl;ic attribute. This is perfedly confiflient with the general practice of the Greek artifl:s, who (as will be made appear hereafter) uniformly reprefented the attributes of the deity by the correfponding pro- perties obferved in the objedis of fight. They thus perfonified the epithets and titles applied to him in the hymns and litanies, and conveyed their ideas of him by forms, only intelligible to the ini- tiated, inftead of founds, which were intelligible to all. The organ of generation reprefented the generative or creative attribute, and in the language of painting and fculpture, fignified the fame as the epithet Trayyeverco^^ in the Orphic litanies.

This interpretation will perhaps furprife thofe who have not been accufliomed to divefl: their minds of the prejudices of education and fafiiion ; but I doubt not, but it will appear jufl: and reafonable to thofe who confider manners and cuftoms as relative to the natural

1 Plut. tie Is. ei Os. ^ Ibid. ^ Orph. Jrgon. 422.


caufes which produced them, rather than to the artificial opinions and prejudices of any particular age or country. There is naturally no impurity or licentioufnefs in the moderate and regular gratifica- tion of any natural appetite ; the turpitude confifting wholly in the excefs or perverfion. Neither are organs of one fpecies of enjoy- ment naturally to be confidered as fubjefts of fliame and conceal- ment more than thofe of another ; every refinement of modern manners on this head being derived from acquired habit, not from nature: habit, indeed, long eftablifhed ; for it feems to have been as general in Homer's days as at prefent ; but which certainly did not exift when the* myftic fymbols of the ancient worfhip were firft adopted. As thefe fymbols were intended to exprefs abftraft ideas by objeds of fight, the contrivers of them naturally felefted thofe objeds whofe charaderiftic properties feemed to have the greateft analogy with the Divine attributes which they wifhed to reprefent. In an age, therefore, when no prejudices of artificial decency exifted, what more juft and natural image could they find, by which to exprefs their idea of the beneficent power of the great Creator, than that organ which endowed them with the power of procreation, and made them partakers, not only of the felicity of the Deity, but of his great charadleriftic attribute, that of multiplying his own image, communicating his bleffmgs, and extending them to genera- tions yet unborn ?

In the ancient theology of Greece, preferved in the Orphic Fragments, this Deity, the E/0ft)9 irpcoroyovo'?, or firft-begotten Love, is faid to have been produced, together with i^ther, by Time, or Eternity {Kpovo<;), and NecefTity {Avayxv)y operating upon inert matter {Xao<: ). He is defcribed as eternally begetting {aeiyvrjTrj^ ) ; the Father of Night, called in later times, the lucid or fplendid, {(f)avr]^)^ becaufe he firft appeared in fplendour; of a double nature, (St^u??? ), as pofTefling the general power of creation


and generation, both aftive and pafTive, both male and female.^ Light is his neceffary and primary attribute, co-eternal with him-

'Orph. Argo7i., ver. i 2. This poem of the Argonautic Expedition is not of the ancient Orpheus, but written in his name by fome poet pofterior to Homer ; as appears by the allufion to Orpheuf's defcent into hell ; a fable invented after the Homeric times. It is, however, of very great antiquity, as both the flyle and manner fufficiently prove ; and, I think, cannot be later than the age of Pififtratus, to which it has been generally attributed. The paflage here referred to is cited from another poem, which, at the time this was written, paffed for a genuine work of the Thracian bard : whether jullly or not, matters little ; for its being thought fo at that time proves it to be of the remoteft antiquity. The other Orphic poems cited in this difcourfe are the Hymns, or Litanies, which are attributed by the early Chriftian and later Platonic writers to Onomacritus, a poet of the age of Pififtratus ; but which are probably of various authors (See Brucker. Hijl. Crit. Philos., vol. i., part 2, lib. i., c. i.) They contain, however, nothing which proves them to be later than the Trojan times ; and if Onomacritus, or any later author, had anything to do with them, it feems to have been only in new-verfifying them, and changing the dialed (See Gefner. Proleg. Orphica, p. 26). Had he forged them, and attempted to impofe them upon the world, as the genuine compofitions of an ancient bard, there can be no doubt but that he would have fluffed them with antiquated words and obfolete phrafes ; which is by no means the cafe, the language being pure and worthy the age of Pififtratus. Thefe poems are not properly hymns, for the hymns of the Greeks contained the nativities and aftions of the gods, like thofe of Homer and Callimachus ; but thefe are compofitions of a different kind, and are properly invocations or prayers ufed in the Orphic myfteries, and feem nearly of the fame clafs as the Pfalms of the Hebrews. The reafon why they are fo feldom mentioned by any of the early writers, and fo perpetually referred to by the later, is that they belonged to the myftic worfliip, where everything was kept concealed under the ftricteft oaths of fecrefy. But after the rife of Chriftianity, this facred filence was broken by the Greek converts, who revealed everything which they thought would depreciate the old religion or recommend the new ; whilft the heathen priefts revealed whatever they thought would have contrary tendency; and endeavoured to fhow, by publifliing the real myftic creed of their religion, that the principles of it were not ib abfurd as its outward ftrufture feemed to infer ; but that, when ftripped of poetical allegory and vulgar fable, their theology was pure, reafonable, and fublime (Gefner. Proleg. Orphica). The colledlion of thefe poems now extant, being pro- bably compiled and verfified by feveral hands, with fome forged, and others interpo- lated and altered, muft be read with great caution ; more efpecially the Fragments


felf, and with him brought forth from inert matter by neceffity. Hence the purity and fandity always attributed to light l)y the

preferved by the Fathers of the Church and Ammonian Platonics ; for thefe writers made no fcruple of forging any monuments of antiquity wliich luitcd their purpofes ; particularly the former, who, in addition to their natural zeal, having the interells or a confederate body to fupport, thought every means by which they could benefit that body, by extending the lights of revelation, and gaining profelytes to the true faith, not only allowable, but meritorious (See Clementina, Hom, vii., fee. 10. Recogn. lib. i., ^^c. 65. Origen. apud Hieronom. Apolog. i., contra Ruf. et Chryfoftom. de Sacerdot., lib. i. Chryfoftom, in particular, not only jurtifies, but warmly commends, any frauds that can be praftifed for the advantage of the Church of Chriil). Paufanias fays (lib. ix.), that the Hymns of Orpheus were few and (hort; but next in poetical merit to thofe of Homer, and iliperior to them in fanftity (deoXoyiKMTepoL). Thefe are probably the fame as the genuine part of the colleftion now extant; but they are fo intermixed, that it is difficult to fay which are genuine and which are not. Perhaps there is no furer rule for judging than to compare the epithets and allegories with the fymbols and monograms on the Greek medals, and to make their agreement the tell of authenticity. The medals were the public afts and records of the State, made under the direftion of the magiftrates, who were gene- rally initiated into the mylleries. We may therefore be aflured, that whatever theological and mythological allufions are found upon them were part of the ancient religion of Greece. It is from thefe that many of the Orphic Hymns and Fragments are proved to contain the pure theology or myilic faith of the ancients, which is called Orphic by Paufanias (lib. i. , c. 39), and which is fo unlike the vulgar religion, or poetical mythology, that one can fcarcely imagine at firil fight that it belonged to the fame people; but which will neverthelefs appear, upon accurate invelligation, to be the fource from whence it flowed, and the caufe of all its extravagance.

The hillory of Orpheus himfelf is fo confufed and obfcured by fable, that it is impoflible to obtain any certain information concerning him. According to general tradition, he was a Thracian, and introduced the mylleries, in which a more pure fyilem of religion was taught, into Greece (Brucker, vol. i., part 2, lib. i., c. i.) He is alfo laid to have travelled into Egypt (Diodor. Sic. lib. i., p. 80); but as the Egyptians pretended that all foreigners received their fciences from them, at a time when all foreigners who entered the country were put to death or enflaved (Diodor. Sic. lib. i., pp. 78 et 107), this account may be rejefted, with many others ot the fame kind. The Egyptians certainly could not have taught Orpheus the plurality of worlds, and true folar fyilem, which appear to have been the fundamental principles of his philofophy and religion (Plutarch, de Placit. Philos., lib. ii., c. 13.


Greeks.^ He is called the Father of Night, becaufe by attradiingthe light to himfelf, and becoming the fountain which distributed it to the world, he produced night, which is called eternally-begotten, becaufe it had eternally exifted, although mixed and loft in the general mafs. He is faid to pervade the world with the motion of his wings, bringing pure light ; and thence to be called the fplendid, the ruling Priapus,and self-illumined {avTavyrjs:'^). It is to beobferved, that the word IlpLi]7ro<;, afterwards the name of a fubordinate deity, is here ufed as a title relating to one of his attributes; the reafons for which I fhall endeavour to explain hereafter. Wings are figura- tively attributed to him as being the emblems of fwiftnefs and incu- bation ; by the firft of which he pervaded matter, and by the fecond fructified the egg of Chaos. The egg was carried in procefiion at the celebration of the myfteries, becaufe, as Plutarch fays, it was the material of generation (yXv tt^'^ r^eveaews;^) containing the feeds and germs of life and motion, without being actually poiTefl^ed of either. For this reafon, it was a very proper fymbol of Chaos, con- taining the feeds and materials of all things, which, however, were barren and ufelefs, until the Creator frudified them by the incuba- tion of his vital fpirit, and releafed them from the reftraints of inert

Brucker ifi he. citat. ) Nor could he have gained this knowledge from any people which hiftory has preferved any memorials ; for we know of none among whom fcience had made fuch a progrefs, that a truth fo remote from common obfervation, and fo contradiflory to the evidence of unimproved fenfe, would not have been rejefted, as it was by all the fefts of Greek philofophy except the Pythagoreans, who rather revered it as an article of faith, than underftood it as a difcovery of fcience. Thrace was certainly inhabited by a civilized nation at fome remote period ; for, when Philip of Macedon opened the gold mines in that country, he found that they had been worked before with great expenfe and ingenuity, by a people well verfed in mechanics, of whom no memorials whatever were then extant. Of thefe, pro- bably, was Orpheus, as well as Thamyris, both of whofe poems, Plato fays, could be read with pleafure in his time.

  • See Sophocl. Qi,Jip. Tyr., ver. 1436. ^ Orph. Hym. 5. 3 Symph. 1. 2.


matter, by the efforts of his divine ftrength. The incubation of the vital fpirit is reprefented on the colonial medals of Tyre, by a fer- pent wreathed around an egg;^ for the ferpent, having the power of carting his fkin, and apparently renewing his youth, became the fymbol of life and vigour, and as fuch is always made an attendant on the mythological deities prefiding over health.'- It is alfo ob- ferved, that animals of the ferpent kind retain life more pertinacioufly than any others except the Polypus, which is fometimes reprefented upon the Greek Medals,^ probably in its ftead. I have myfelf feen the heart of an adder continue its vital motions for many minutes after it has been taken from the body, and even renew them, after it has been cold, upon being moiftened with warm water, and touched with a ftimulus.

The Creator, delivering the frud;ified feeds of things from the reftraints of inert matter by his divine ftrength, is reprefented on innumerable Greek medals by the Urus, or wild Bull, in the ad of butting againft the Egg of Chaos, and breaking it with his horns.' It is true, that the egg is not reprefented with the bull on any of thofe which I have feen; but Mr. D'Hancarville"^ has brought examples from other countries, where the fame fyftem prevailed, which, as well as the general analogy of the Greek theology, prove that the egg muft have been underftood, and that the attitude of the bull could have no other meaning. I fhall alfo have occafion here- after to ftiow by other examples, that it was no uncommon pradice, in thefe myftic monuments, to make a part of a group reprefent the whole. It was from this horned fymbol of the power of the

1 See Plate xxi. Fig. i. ~ Macrob. Sat. i. c. 20.

3 See Goltz, Tab. 11. Figs. 7 and 8.

"* See Plate IV. Fig. i, and Recherches furies Arts, vol. i. PI. viii. The Hebrew word Ckroub, or Cherub, fignificd originally y/ro//^ or robuji ; but is ufually employed metaphorically, fignifying a Bull. See Cleric, in Exod. c. xxv.

^ Recherches fur les Arts, lib. i.


Deity that horns were placed in the portraits of kings to fhow that their power was derived from Heaven, and acknowledged no earthly fuperior. The moderns have indeed changed the meaning of this fymbol, and given it a fenfe of which, perhaps, it would be difficult to find the origin, though I have often wondered that it has never exercifed the fagacity of thofe learned gentlemen who make Britifh antiquities the fubjefts of their laborious inquiries. At prefent, it certainly does not bear any character of dignity or power ; nor does it ever imply that thofe to whom it is attributed have been parti- cularly favoured by the generative or creative powers. But this is a fubjed much too important to be difcufTed in a digreffion ; I fhall therefore leave it to thofe learned antiquarians who have done themfelves fo much honour, and the public fo much fervice, by their fuccefsful inquiries into cuftoms of the fame kind. To their indefatigable induftry and exquifite ingenuity I earneftly recommend it, only obferving that this modern acceptation of the fymbol is of confiderable antiquity, for it is mentioned as proverbial in the Oneirocritics of Artemidorus ; ^ and that it is not now confined to Great Britain, but prevails in moft parts of Christendom, as the ancient acceptation of it did formerly in moft parts of the world, even among that people from whofe religion Chriftianity is derived ; for it is a common mode of expreflion in the Old Teftament, to fay that the horns of any one fhall be exalted, in order to fignify that he fhall be raifed into power or pre-eminence ; and when Mofes defcended from the Mount with the fpirit of God ftill upon him, his head appeared horned."

To the head of the bull was fometimes joined the organ of generation, which reprefented not only the ftrength of the Creator,

1 Lib. i. c. 12.

2 Exod. c. xxxiv.v. 35, ed. Vulgat. Other tranflators underftand the expreffion metaphorically, and Tuppofe it to mean radiated, or luminous.


but the peculiar diredlion of it to the moft beneficial purpofe, the propagation of fenfitive beings. Of this there is a fmall bronze in the Mufeum of Mr. Townley, of which an engraving is given in Plate III. Fig. 1}

Sometimes this generative attribute is reprefented by the fymbol of the goat, fuppofed to be the moft falacious of animals, and there- fore adopted upon the fame principles as the bull and the ferpent.'^ The choral odes, fung in honour of the generator Bacchus, were hence called TpaycDSiai, or fongs of the goat ; a title which is now applied to the dramatic dialogues anciently inferted in thefe odes, to break their uniformity. On a medal, ftruck in honour of Auguftus, the goat terminates in the tail of a fifh, to fhow the generative power incorporated with water. Under his feet is the globe of the earth, fuppofed to be fertilifed by this union; and upon his back, the cornucopia, reprefenting the refult of this fertility.^

Mr. D'Hancarville attributes the origin of all thefe fymbols to the ambiguity of words; the fame term being employed in the primitive language to fignify God and a Bull, the Univerfe and a Goat, Life and a Serpent. But words are only the types and fymbols of ideas, and therefore muft be pofterior to them, in the fame manner as ideas are to their objed:s. The words of a primitive language, being imitative of the ideas from which they fprung, and of the objefts they meant to exprefs, as far as the imperfedions of the organs of fpeech will admit, there muft neceftarily be the fame kind of analogy between them as between the ideas and objeds themfelves. It is impoftible, therefore, that in fuch a language any ambiguity of this fort could exift, as it does in fecondary

1 See Plate iii.

^ Tov 8e rpayov acoeOecocrav (o't Aijvmtlol) Kadawep kcl wapa TOi? EWtjai reTLfiija-daL Xerfcai tov YlpiawoVySia to yevmjTiKov p,opLov.'DioDOR.\'ib.\.p."8.

3 Plate X. Fig. 3.


languages ; the words of which, being colleded from various fources,and blended togetherwithout having any natural conneftion, become arbitrary figns of convention, inftead of imitative reprefen- tations of ideas. In this cafe it often happens, that words, fimilar in form, but different in meaning, have been adopted from different fources, which, being blended together, lofe their little difference of form, and retain their entire difference of meaning. Hence ambiguities arife, fuch as thofe above mentioned, which could not poffibly exift in an original tongue.

The Greek poets and artifts frequently give the perfonification of a particular attribute for the Deity himfelf ; hence he is called Taf/3o/3oa9, TaypwTTo?, Tau/ao/Aopc^o?,^ &c., and hence the initials and monograms of the Orphic epithets applied to the Creator, are found with the bull, and other fymbols, on the Greek medals.^ It muft not be imagined from hence, that the ancients fuppofed the Deity to exift under the form of a bull, a goat, or a ferpent: on the contrary, he is always defcribed in the Orphic theology as a general pervading Spirit, without form, or diftind locality of any kind; and appears, by a curious fragment preferved by Proclus,^ to have been no other than attratlion perfonified. The felf-created mind {I'oo'i avTo<yeve6\o'i) of the Eternal Father is faid to have fpread the heavy bond of love through all things [iracnv eveaireipev heafiov TrepL^pidr) E/awro?), in order that they might endure for ever. This Eternal Father is Kpovo<i, time or eternity, perfonified; and fo taken for the unknown Being that fills eternity and infinity. The ancient theologifts knew that we could form no pofitive idea of infinity, whether of power, fpace, or time ; it being fleeting and fugitive, and eluding the underftanding by a continued and boundlefs pro-

1 Orph. Hymn. v. et xxix.

2 Numm. Vet. Pop. et Urb. Tab. xxxix. Figs. 19 et 20. They are on moft of the medals of Marfeilles, Naples, Thurium and many other cities.

3 In Tim. in., et Frag. Orphic, ed. Gefner.


greflion. The only notion we have of it is from the addition or divifion of finite things, which fuggefl: the idea of infinite, only from a power we feel in ourfelves of ftill multiplying and dividing without end. The Schoolmen indeed were bolder, and, by a fum- mary mode of reafoning, in which they were very expert, proved that they had as clear and adequate an idea of infinity, as of any finite fubftance whatever. Infinity, faid they, is that which has no bounds. This negation, being a pofitive afiertion, mufl: be founded on a pofitive idea. We have therefore a pofitive idea of infinity. TheEclefticJ ews,and their foUowerSjtheAmmonian and Chrifl:ian PlatonicSjwhoendeavouredtomaketheirownphilofophyandreligion conform to the ancient theology, held infinity of fpace to be only the immenfitv of the divine prefence. 'O 0eo9 havrV) totto^ eari^ was their dogma, which is now inferted into the Confefiional of the Greek Church." This infinity was difl:inguifhed by them from common fpace, as time was from eternity. Whatever is eternal or infinite, faid they, muft be abfolutely indivifible ; becaufe divifion is in itfelf inconfifl:ent with infinite continuity and duration: there- fore fpace and time are difl:inft from infinity and eternity, which are void of all parts and gradations whatever. Time is meafured by years, days, hours, &c., and difliinguifhed by paft, prefent, and future ; but thefe, being divifions, are excluded from eternity, as locality is from infinity, and as both are from the Being who fills both ; who can therefore feel no fucceflion of events, nor know any gradation of diftance; but muft comprehend infinite duration as if it were one moment, and infinite extent as if it were but a fingle point. Hence the Ammonian Platonics fpeak of him as concen- tered in his own unity, and extended through all things, but par-

• Philo. (Ic Leg. Alleg. lib. i. Jo. Damafc dc Orth. Fid.

2 Mofheim. Nota in Sec. xxiv. Cudw. SyJ}. Intelka.

3 See Boeth. de Confol. Philof. lib. iv. prof. 6.



ticipated of by none. Being of a nature more refined and elevated than intelligence itfelf, he could not be known by fenfe, perception, or reafon ; and being the caufe of all, he muft be anterior to all, even to eternity itfelf, if confidered as eternity of time, and not as the intelleftual unity, which is the Deity himfelf, by whofe emana- tions all things exift, and to whofe proximity or diftances they owe their degrees of excellence or bafenefs. Being itfelf, in itsmoft abftrad: fenfe, is derived from him ; for that which is the caufe and begin- ning of all Beings cannot be a part of that All which fprung from himfelf: therefore he is not Being, nor is Being his Attribute ; for that which has an attribute cannot have the abftrad: fimplicity of pure unity. All Being is in its nature finite; for, if it was other- wife, it muft be without bounds every way ; and therefore could have no gradation of proximity to the firft caufe, or confequent pre-eminence of one part over another : for, as all diftind:ions of time are excluded from infinite duration, and all divifions of locality from infinite extent, fo are all degrees of priority from infinite pro- greifion. The mind is and a5is in itfelf; but the abftradl unity of the firft cause is neither in itfelf, nor in another; — not in itfelf, be- caufe that would imply modification, from which abftradl fimplicity is neceflarily exempt ; nor in another, becaufe then there would be an hypoftatical duality, inftead of abfolute unity. In both cafes there would be a locality of hypoftafis, inconfiftent with intellectual infinity. As all phyfical attributes were excluded from this meta- phyfical abftrad:ion, which they called their firft caufe, he muft of courfe be deftitute of all moral ones, which are only generalifed modes of adiion of the former. Even fimple abftradt truth was denied him ; for truth, as Proclus fays, is merely the relative to falfehood; and no relative can exift without a pofitive or correlative. The Deity therefore who has no falfehood, can have no truth, in our fenfe of the word.^

^ Proclus in Theolog. Platan, lib. i. et ii.


As metaphyfical theology is a ftudy very generally, and very defervedly, negleded at prefent, I thought this little fpecimen of it might be entertaining, from its novelty, to moft readers ; efpecially as it is intimately connedled with the ancient fyftem, which I have here undertaken to examine. Thofe, who wifli to know more ot it, may consult Proclus on the Theology of Plato, where they will find the moft exquifite ingenuity moft wantonly wafted. No perfons ever ftiewed greater acutenefs or ftrength of reafoning than the Platonics and Scholaftics; but having quitted common fenfe, and attempted to mount into the intelleftual world, they expended it all in abortive efforts, which may amufe the imagination, but cannot fatisfy the underftanding.

The ancient Theologifts ftiowed more difcretion ; for, finding that they could conceive no idea of infinity, they were content to revere the Infinite Being in the moft general and efficient exertion of his power, attradion ; whofe agency is perceptible through all matter, and to which all motion may, perhaps, be ultimately traced. This power, being perfonified, became the fecondary Deity, to whom all adoration and worftiip were direded, and who is therefore fre- quently confidered as the fole and fupreme caufe of all things. His agency being fuppofed to extend through the whole material world, and to produce all the various revolutions by which its fyftem is fuftained, his attributes were of courfe extremely numerous and varied. Thefe were exprefl'ed by various titles and epithets in the myftic hymns and litanies, which the artifts endeavoured to reprefent by various forms and charaders of men and animals. The great charaderiftic attribute was reprefented by the organ of generation in that ftate of tenfion and rigidity which is neceflary to the due per- formance of its fundions. Many fmall images of this kind have been found among the ruins of Herculaneum and Pompeii, attached to the bracelets, which the chafte and pious matrons of antiquity wore round their necks and arms. In thefe, the organ of generation


appears alone, or only accompanied with the wings of incubation, ^ in order to fhow that the devout wearer devoted herfelf wholly and folely to procreation, the great end for which fhe was ordained. So expreffive a fymbol, being conftantly in her view, muft keep her attention fixed on its natural objeft, and continually remind her of the gratitude fhe owed the Creator, for having taken her into his fervice, made her a partaker of his moft valuable bleffings, and employed her as the paffive inftrument in the exertion of his moft beneficial power.

The female organs ofgeneration were revered^ as fymbols of the generative powers of nature or matter, as the male were of the gene- rative powers of God. They are ufually reprefented emblematically, by the Shell, or Concha Veneris, which was therefore worn by devout perfons of antiquity, as it ftill continues to be by pilgrims, and many of the common women of Italy. The union of both was exprefled by the hand mentioned in Sir William Hamilton's letter;^ which beingalefs explicit fymbol, has efcaped the attention of the reformers, and is ftill worn, as well as the ftiell, by the women of Italy, though without being underftood. It reprefented the ad: of generation, which was confidered as a folemn facrament, in honour of the Crea- tor, as will be more fully ftiown hereafter.

The male organs of generation are fometimes found reprefented by figns of the fame fort, which might properly be called the fym- bols of fymbols. One of the moft remarkableof thefeisacrofs, in the form of- the letter T,'* which thus ferved as the emblem of creation and generation, before the church adopted it as the fign of falvation ; a lucky coincidence of ideas, which, without doubt, facilitated the

^ Plate II. Fig, 2. engraved from one in the Britifh Mufeum. ^ Auguft. de Civ. Dei, Lib. vi. c. 9.

3 See Platen. Fig. i. from one in the Britifh Mul'eum, in which both fymbols are united.

^ Recherches lur les Arts, lib. i. c. 3.


reception of it among the faithful. To the reprefentativeof themale organs was fometimes added a human head, which gives it the exad appearance of a crucifix ; as it has on a medal of Cyzicus, publifhcd by M. Pellerin.' On an ancient medal, found in Cyprus, which, from the ftyle of workmanfhip, is certainly anterior to the Mace- donian conqueft, it appears with the chaplet or rofary, fuch as is now ufed in the Romifh churches ;'- the beads of which were ufed, anciently, to reckon time;' Their being placed in a circle, marked its progrefiive continuity; while their feparation from each other marked the divifions, by which it is made to return on itfelf, and thus produce years, months, and days. The fymbol of the creative power is placed upon them, becaufe thefe divifions were particularly under his influence and protedion ; the fun being his vifible image, and the centre of his power, from which his emanations extended through the univerfe. Hence the Egyptians, in their facred hymns, called upon Ofiris, as the being who dwelt concealed in the em- braces of the fun;* and hence the great luminary itfelf is called Koa-fioKpaTO)^ (Ruler of the World) in the Orphic Hymns.

This general emanation of the pervading Spirit of God, by which all things are generated and maintained, is beautifully de- fcribed by Virgil, in the following lines :

Deum namque ire per omnes Terrafque, traftufque maris, coelumque profundum. Hinc pecudes, armenta, viros, genus omne terarum, Quemque fibi tenues nafcentem arceflere vitas. Scilicet hue reddi deinde, ac refoluta referri Omnia : ncc morti efle locum, fed viva volare Sideris in numerum, atque alto fuccedere coelo.^

1 See Plate ix. Fig. i.

~ Plate IX. Fig. 2, from Pellerin. Similar medals arc in the Hunter Colledion, and are evidently of Phoenician work.

3 Recherches furies Arts, lib. i. c. 3. ^ Plutarch. Je Is. ft OJtr.

s See Hymn vii. ^ Georgic. lib. iv. ver. 221.


The Ethereal Spirit is heredefcribedas expanding itfelf through the univerfe, and giving life and motion to the inhabitants of earth, water, and air, by a participation of its own effence, each particle of which returned to its native fource, at the diflblution of the body which it animated. Hence, not only men, but all animals, and even vegetables, were fuppofed to be impregnated with fome particles of the Divine Nature infufed into them, from which their various qualities and difpoiitions, as well as their powers of propaga- tion, were fuppofed to be derived. Thefe appeared to be fo many emanations of the Divine attributes,operating in different modes and degrees, according to the nature of the beings to which they be- longed. Hence the charafteriftic properties of animals and plants were not only regarded as reprefentations, but as adual emanations of the Divine Power, confubftantial with his own effence.^ For this reafon, the fymbols were treated with greater refped: and veneration than if they had been merely figns and characSters of convention. Plutarch fays, that mofl of the Egyptian priefts held the bull Apis, who was worshipped with fo much ceremony, to be only an image of the Spirit of Ofiris." This I take to have been the real meaning of all the animal worfliip of the Egyptians, about which fo much has been written, and fo little difcovered. Thofe animals or plants, in which any particular attribute of the Deity feemed to predominate, became the fymbols of that attribute, and were accordingly worfhipped as the images of Divine Providence, adling in that particular direction. Like many other cuftoms, both of ancient and modern worfhip, the practice, probably, continued long after the reafons upon which it was founded were either wholly loft, or only partially preferved, in vague traditions. This was the cafe in Egypt ; for, though many of the priefts knew or conjectured the origin of the worftiip of the bull, they could give no rational

1 Proclus i?i Theol. Plat. lib. i. pp. 56, 57. ^ De Is. et Os.


account why the crocodile, the ichneumon, and the ibis, received fimilar honours. The fymbolical charadlers, called hieroglyphics, continued to be efteemed by them as more holy and venerable than the conventional reprefentations of founds, notwithftanding their manifeft inferiority; yet it does not appear, from any accounts extant, that they were able to affign any reafon for this preference. On the contrary, Strabo tells us that the Egyptians of his time were wholly ignorant of their ancient learning and religion,^ though impoftors continually pretended to explain it. Their ignorance in thefe points is not to be wondered at, confidering that the moft ancient Egyptians, of whom we have any authentic accounts, lived after the fubverfion of their monarchy and deftrudion of their temples by the Perfians, who ufed every endeavour to annihilate their religion; firft, by command of Cambyfes, ^ and then of Ochus. ■' What they were before this calamity, we have no direcft information ; for Herodotus is the earlieft traveller, and he vifited this country when in ruins.

It is obfervable in all modern religions, that men are fuper- ftitious in proportion as they are ignorant, and that thofe who know leaft of the principles of religion are the moft earneft and fervent in the practice of its exterior rites and ceremonies. We may fuppofe from analogy, that this was the cafe with the Egyptians. The learned and rational merely refpeded and revered the facred animals, whilft the vulgar worfliipped and adored them. The greateft part of the former being, as is natural to fuppofe, deftroyed by the perfecution of the Perfians, this worfhip and adoration be- came general ; different cities adopting different animals as their tutelar deities, in the fame manner as the Catholics now put them- felves under the protection of different faints and martyrs. Like

1 Lib. xvii. 2 Herodot. lib. iii. Strabo, lib. xvii.

3 Plutarch, de Is. et Os.


them, too, in the fervency of their devotion for the imaginary agent, they forgot the original caufe.

The cuftom of keeping facred animals as images of the Divine attributes, feems once to have prevailed in Greece as well as Egypt; for the God of Health was reprefented by a living ferpent at Epi- daurus, even in the laft ftage of their religion.^ In general, how- ever, they preferred wrought images, not from their fuperiority in art, which they did not acquire till after the time of Homer, ^ when their theology was entirely corrupted ; but becaufe they had thus the means of exprefTing their ideas more fully, by combining feveral forms together, and fhowing, not only the Divine attribute, but the mode and purpofe of its operation. For inftance ; the celebrated bronze in the Vatican has the male organs of generation placed upon the head of a cock, the emblem of the fun, fupported by the neck and fhoulders of a man. In this compofition they reprefented the generative power of the Epw?, the Ofiris, Mithras, or Bacchus, whofe centre is the fun, incarnate with man. By the infcription on the pedeftal, the attribute thus perfonified, is ftyled 'The Saviour of the World [Icorr]^ Koa-fx^) ; a title always venerable, under whatever image it be reprefented. ^

The Egyptians fhowed this incarnation of the Deity by a lefs permanent, though equally expreffive fymbol. At Mendes a living goat was kept as the image of the generative power, to whom the women prefented themfelves naked, and had the honour of being publicly enjoyed by him. Herodotus faw the ad: openly per- formed (e9 eTTiSeL^LV av6pa)ir(ov)^ and calls it a prodigy (re/ja?). But the Egyptians had no fuch horror of it ; for it was to them a repre- fentation of the incarnation of the Deity, and the communication of

1 Liv. HiJ}. Epitom. lib. xi.

2 When Homer praifes any work of art, he calls it the work of Sidonians.

3 See Plate ii. Fig. 3.


his creative fpirit to man. It was one of the facraments of that ancient church, and was, without doubt, beheld with that pious awe and reverence with which devout perfons always contemplate the myfteries of their faith, whatever they happen to be; for, as the learned and orthodox Bifhop Warburton, whofe authority it is not for me to difpute, favs, from the nature of any allien morality cannot ari/e, nor from its effe^s ;^ therefore, for aught we can tell, this ceremony, however fhocking it may appear to modern manners and opinions, might have been intrinfically meritorious at the time of its celebration, and afforded a truly edifying fpedacle to the faints of ancient Egypt. Indeed, the Greeks do not feem to have felt much horror or difguft at the imitative reprefentation of it, what- ever the hiftorian might have thought proper to exprefs at the real celebration. Several fpecimens of their fculpture in this way have efcaped the fury of the reformers, and remained for the in- ftru(5lion of later times. One of thefe, found among the ruins of Herculaneum, and kept concealed in the Royal Mufeum of Portici, is well known. Another exifts in the colleftion of Mr. Townley, which I have thought proper to have engraved for the benefit of the learned.^ It may be remarked, that in thefe monuments the goat is pajfive inftead of a^ive ; and that the human fymbol is repre- fented as incarnate with the divine^ inftead of the divine with the human: but this is in fad; no difference; for the Creator, being of both fexes, is reprefented indifferently of either. In the other fymbol of the bull, the fex is equally varied ; the Greek medals having fometimes a bull, and fometimes a cow,^ which, Strabo tells us, was employed as the fymbol of Venus, the paffive generative power, at Momemphis, in Egypt.* Both the bull and the cow are

^ Div. Leg. book i. c. 4. 2 See Plate vii.

3 See Plate iv. Fig. i, 2, 3, and Plate iii. Fig. 4, engraved from medals belonging to me.

^ Lib. xvii.



alfo worfhipped at prefent by the Hindoos, as fymbols of the male and female, or generative and nutritive, powers of the Deity. The cow is in almoft all their pagodas ; but the bull is revered with fuperior folemnity and devotion. At Tanjour is a monument of their piety to him, which even the inflexible perfeverance, and habitual indufl:ry of the natives of that country, could fcarcely have ereded without greater knowledge in practical mechanics than they now pofTefs. It is a fl:atue of a bull lying down, hewn, with great accuracy, out of a Angle piece of hard granite, which has been conveyed by land from the diftance of one hundred miles, although its weight, in its prefent reduced fliate, muft be at leafl: one hundred tons. ^ The Greeks fometimes made their Taurine Bacchus, or bull, with a human face, to exprefs both fexes, which they fignified by the initial of the epithet Akj^vt]^ placed under him. ^ Over him they frequently put the radiated afterifl<:, which reprefents the fun, to fhow the Deity, whofe attribute he was intended to exprefs.^ Hence we may perceive the reafon why the Germans, who, accord- ing to Caefar, * worfhipped the fun, carried a brazen bull, as the image of their God, when they invaded the Roman dominions in the time of Marius ; ^ and even the chofen people of Providence, when they made unto themfelves an image of the God who was to condudl them through the defert, and caft out the un- godly, from before them, made it in the fhape of a young bull, or calf. '

The Greeks, as they advanced in the cultivation of the imitative

1 See Plate xxii. with the meafurements, as made by Capt. Patterfon on the fpot.

2 See Plate iv. Fig. 2, from a medal of Naples in the Hunter colleftion.

3 See Plate iv. Fig. 2, and Plate xix. Fig. 4, from a medal of Cales, belonging to me.

  • De B. G. , lib. vi. ^ Plut. i?i Mario.

6 Exod. c. xxxii., with Patrick's Commentary.


arts, gradually changed the animal for the human form, preferving ftill the original charader. The human head was at firft added to the body of the bull ;^ but afterwards the whole figure was made human, with fome of the features, and general charader of the ani- mal, blended with it. ^ Oftentimes, however, thefe mixed figures had a peculiar and proper meaning, like that of the Vatican Bronze ; and were not intended as mere refinements of art. Such are the fawns and fatyrs, who reprefent the emanations of the Creator, incarnate with man, ading as his angels and minifters in the work of univerfal generation. In copulation with the goat, they reprefent the reciprocal incarnation of man with the deity, when incorporated with univerfal matter : for the Deity, being both male and female, was both adive and paffive in procreation ; firft animat- ing man by an emanation from his own effence, and then employing that emanation to reproduce, in conjundion with the common pro- ductive powers of nature, which are no other than his own prolific fpirit transfufed through matter.

Thefe mixed beings are derived from Pan, the principle of uni- verfal order ; of whofe perfonified image they partake. Pan is addrefled in the Orphic Litanies as thefirft-begotten love, or creator incorporated in univerfal matter, and fo forming the world. ^ The heaven, the earth, water, and fire are faid to be members of him ; and he is defcribed as the origin and fource of all things (7rai'T09L'?/«f yeverco^TravTcov), as reprefenting matteranimated by the Divine Spirit. Lycaean Pan was the moft ancientand revered God of the Arcadians,* the moft ancient people of Greece. The epithet Lycaean (Au/caio?), is ufually derived from Xi;/co9, a wolf; though it is impoftible to

1 See the medals of Naples, Gela, &c. Plate iv. Fig. z. and Plate ix. Fig. i i , are fpecimens ; but the coins are in all colleftions.

2 See Bronzi cP Herculario, torn. v. Plate v. ^ Hymn. x.

  • Dionys. Antiq. Rom. lib. i. c. 32.


find any relation which this etymology can have with the deities to

which it is applied ; for the epithet Aw/caio?, or Au/ceio? (which is only

the different pronunciation of a different dialedl), is occafionally

applied to almofl all the gods. I have therefore no doubt, but that it

ought to be derived from the old word Xy/co?, or \vk7], light; from which

came the Latin word lux} In this fenfe it is a very proper epithet for

the Divine Nature, of whofe effence light was fuppofed to be. I am

confirmed in this conjedure by a word in the EleSlra of Sophocles,

which feems hitherto to have been mifunderflood. At the opening of

the play, the old tutor of Orefles, entering Argos with his young

pupil, points out to him the mofl celebrated public buildings, and

amongft them the Lycaean Forum, t« Xvkoktov^ @eb, which the

fcholiafl and tranflators interpret, of the wolf-killing God, though

there is no reafon whatever why this epithet fhould be applied to

Apollo. But, if we derive the compound from Xwo?, light, and

€KTeiveLv, to extend, inftead of Kretvetv, to kill, the meaning will be

perfedly jufl and natural ; for light-extending, is of all others the

propereft epithet for the fun. Sophocles, as' well as Virgil, is known

to have been an admirer of ancient exprefrions,and to have imitated

Homer more than any other Attic Poet ; therefore, his employing

an obfolete word is not to be wondered at. Taking this etymology

as the true one, the Lycaean Pan of Arcadia is Pan the luminous ;

that is, the divine efTence of light incorporated in univerfal matter.

The Arcadians called him rov r?;? vXrj^ Kvptov, the lord of matter, as

Macrobius rightly tranflates it.- He was hence called Sylvanus by

the Latins ; Syha being, in the ancient Pelafgian and iEolian

Greek, from which the Latin is derived, the fame as vXtj; for it is

well known to all who have compared the two languages attentively,

that the Sigma and Fau are letters, the one of which was partially,

and the other generally omitted by the Greeks, in the refinement of

1 Macrob. Sai. xvii. ^ Sat. i. c. 22.


their pronunciation and orthography which took place after the emigration of the Latian and Etrufcan .colonies. The Chorus in the yf/^x- of Sophocles addrefs Pan by the title of 'A\t7r\a7/cT09,' probably becaufe he was worfliipped on the fhores of the fea ; water being reckoned the beft and moft prolific of the fubordinate elements,- upon which the Spirit of God, according to Mofes, or the Plaftic Nature, according to the Platonics, operating, produced life and motion on earth. Hence the ocean is faid by Homer to be the fource of all things;^ and hence the ufe of water in baptifm, which was to regenerate, and, in a manner, new create the perfon baptifed ; for the foul, fuppofed by many of the primitive Chrif- tians to be naturally mortal, was then fuppofed to become im- mortal."* Upon the fame principle, the figure of Pan, is reprefented pouring water upon the organ of generation; that is, invigorating the adive creative power by the prolific element upon which it aded; for water was confidered as the efl'ence of the pafiive prin- ciple, as fire was of the adive; the one being of terreftrial, and the other of aethereal origin. Hence, St. John the Baptift, who might have acquired fome knowledge of the ancient theology, through its revivers, the Ecledic Jews, fays : /, indeed^ baptije you in water to repentance ; but he that cometh after me^ who is more powerful than I am^JJiall baptife you in the Holy Spirit^ and in fire f' that is, I only purify and refrefh the foul, by a communion with the terreftrial principle of life ; but he that cometh after me, will regenerate and reftore it, by a communion with the ethereal principle.'^ Pan is

1 Ver, 703. ^ Pindar. Olynp. i. ver. i. Diodor. Sic. lib. i. p. 11.

3 II. ^, ver. 246, and <^, ver. 196. •* Clementina, Horn. xii. Arnob. adv. Gctitcs, lib. ii.

^ See Plate v. Fig. i. The original is among the antiquities found in Hercu- laneum, nowf in the Mufeum of Portici.

•^ Matth. c. iii.

■^ It is the avowed intention of the learned and excellent work of Grotius, to prove that there is nothing new in Chriftianity. What I have here adduced, may ferve to


again addreffed in the Salaminian Chorus of the fame tragedy of Sophocles, by the titles of author and diredor of the dances of the gods {®e(t)v xopoTTot' ava^), as being the author and difpofer of the regular motions of the univerfe, of which thefe divine dances were fymbols, which are faid in the fame pafTage to be {avroSar]) Jelf- taught to him. Both the Gnoffian and Nyfian dances are here in- cluded, ^ the former facred to Jupiter, and the latter to Bacchus ; for Pan, being the principle of univerfal order, partook of the nature of all the other gods. They were perfonifications of parti- cular modes of afting of the great all-ruling principle; and he, of his general law and pre-eftablifhed harmony by which he governs the univerfe. Hence he is often reprefented playing on a pipe ; mufic being the natural emblem of this phyfical harmony. According to Plutarch, the Jupiter Ammon of the Africans was the fame as the Pan of the Greeks. ^ This explains the reafon why the Macedonian kings affumed the horns of that god ; for, though Alexander pre- tended to be his fon, his fuccelTors never pretended to any fuch honour ; and yet they equally affumed the fymbols, as appears from their medals.^ The cafe is, that Pan, or Ammon, being the univerfe, and Jupitera title of the Supreme God (as will be fhown hereafter), the horns, the emblems of his power, feemed the propereft fymbols of that fupreme and univerfal dominion to which they all, as well as Alexander, had the ambition to afpire. The figure of Ammon was compounded of the forms of the ram, as that of Pan was of the goat ; the reafon of which is difficult to afcertain, unlefs we fuppofe

confirm and illuilrate the difcoveries of that great and good man. See de Veritate Relig. Chrift. lib. iv, c. 12.

1 Ver. 708. '^ De If. et Of.

3 See Plate iv. Fig 4, engraved from one of Lyfimachus, of exquifite beauty, belonging to me. Antigonus put the head of Pan upon his coins, which are not uncommon.


that c;oats were unknown in the country where his worfhip arofe, and that the ram exprefTed the ilimc attribute.^ In a gcni in the Mufeum of Charles Townley, Efq., the head of the Greek Pan is joined to that of a ram, on the body of a cock, over whofe head is the afterifk of the fun, and below it the head of an aquatic fowl, attached to the fame body. The cock is the fymbol of the fun, probably from proclaiming his approach in the morning ; and the aquatic fowl is the emblem of water ; fo that this compofition, apparently fo whimfical, reprefents the univerfe between the two great prolific elements, the one the aftive, and the other the pafiivecaufe of all things.

The Creator being both male and female, the emanations of his creative fpirit, operating upon univerfal matter, produced fubordi- nate minifters of both fexes, and gave, as companions to thetauns and fatyrs, the nymphs of the waters, the mountains and the woods, fignifying the paffive productive powers of each, fubdivided and diffufed. Of the fame clafs are the T^vervWihe^, mentioned by Pau- flmias as companions to Venus, who, as well as Ceres, Juno, Diana, Ifis, &:c., was only a perfonificationof nature, or thepafTive principle of generation, operating in various modes. Apuleius invokes Ifis by the names of the Eleufinian Ceres, Celeft:ial Venus, and Profer- pine; and, when the Goddefs anfwers him, fiie defcribes herfelf as follows : " I am," fays flie, "nature, the parent of things, the fove- reign of the elements, the primary progeny of time, the mofi: exalted of the deities, the firfi: of the heavenly Gods and Goddefi^es, the queen of the fliades, the uniform countenance ; who difpofe, with my nod, the luminous heigjhts of heaven, the falubrious breezes of the fea, and the mournful filence of the dead ; whofe fingle Deity the whole

1 Paufanias (lib. ii. ) fays he knew the meaning of this fymbol, but did not choofe to reveal it, it being a part of the myilic worfhip.

2 Plate III. Fig. i. ^ Lib. i.


world venerates, in many forms, with various rites, and various names. The Egyptians, fkilled in ancient learning, worfhip me with proper ceremonies, and call me by my true name, Queen Ifis."^ According to the Egyptians, Ifis copulated with her brother Ofiris in the womb of their mother ; from whence fprung Arueris, or Orus, the Apollo of the Greeks.^ This allegory means no more than that the adlive and paffive powers of creation united in the womb of night; where they had been implanted by the unknown father, K/oofo?, or time, and by their union produced the feparation or delivery of the elements from each other; for the name Apollo is only a title derived from a7ro\v(o, to deliver from? They made therobes of Ifis various in their colours and complicated in their folds, becaufe the pafTive or material power appeared in various fhapes and modes, as accommodating itfelf to the adive ; but the drefs of Ofiris was fimple, and of one luminous colour, to fhowthe unity of his effence, and univerfality of his power; equally the fame through all things.* The luminous, or flame colour, reprefented the fun, who, in the language of the theologifts, was the fubftance of his facred povv'er, and the viflble image of his intelledual being. He is called, in the Orphic Litanies, the chain which connects all things together (o V aveSpafxe 86a/jio<; aTravTcov,^ as being the principle of attraction ; and the deliverer (Xvcno'i)^ as giving liberty to the innate powers of nature, and thus fertilifing matter. Thefe epithets not only exprefs the theological, but alfo the phyfical fyfl:em of the Orphic fchool ; according to which the fun, being placed in the centre of the

1 Metamorph. lib. xi. ^ Plutarch, de If. et Of. ^ Damm. Lex. Etym.

4 Plutarch, de If. et Of. ^ Ibid. ^ Hymn. xlvi.

"^ Hymn. xlix. the initials of this epithet are with the bull on a medal of Naples belonging to me. The bull has a human countenance, and has therefore been called a minotaur by antiquarians ; notwithllanding he is to be found on different medals, accompanied with all the fymbols both of Bacchus and Apollo, and with the initials of moft of the epithets to be found in the Orphic Litanies.


univerfe, with the planets moving round, was, by his attradive force, the caufe of all union and harmony in the whole; and, by the emanation of his beams, the caufe of all motion and aftivity in the parts. This fyftem is alluded to by Homer in the allegory of the golden chain, by which Jupiter fufpends all things;^ though there is every reafon to believe that the poet himfelf was ignorant of its meaning, and only related it as he had heard it. The Ammonian Platonics adopted the fame fyftem of attraction, but changed its centre from the fun to their metaphyfical abftradion or incompre- henfible unity, whofe emanations pervaded all things, and held all things together.^

Befides the Fauns, Satyrs, and Nymphs, the incarnate emana- tions of the adive and paftive powers of the Creator, we often find in the ancient fculptures certain androgynous beings poffefled of the charadleriftic organs of both fexes, which I take to reprefent organized matter in its firft ftage ; that is, immediately after it was releafed from chaos, and before it was animated by a participation of the ethereal eflence of the Creator. In a beautiful gem belonging to R. Wilbraham, Efq.,^ one of thefe androgynous figures is repre- fented fleeping, with the organs of generation covered, and the egg of chaos broken under it. On the other fide is Bacchus the Crea- tor, bearing a torch, the emblem of ethereal fire, and extending it towards the fieeping figure; whilft one of his agents feems only to wait his permifTion to begin the execution of that ofiice, which, according to every outward and vifible fign, he appears able to difcharge with energy and efFeft. The Creator himfelf leans upon oneofthofe figures commonly called Sileni ; but which, from their heavy unwieldy forms, were probably intended as perfonifications of brute inert matter, from which all things are formed, but which,

1 II. €), ver. xix. 2 Proclus in Theol. Plat. lib. i. c. 21.

' See Plate v. Fig. 3.


being incapable of producing any thing of itfelf, is properly repre- fented as the fupport of the creative power, though not adively inftrumental in his work. The total baldnefs of this figure repre- fents the exhaufted, unprodudive ftate of matter, when the genera- tive powers were feparated from it ; for it was an opinion of the ancients, which I remember to have met with in fome part of the works of Ariftotle, to which I cannot at prefent refer, that every ad of coition produced a tranfient chill in the brain, by which fome of the roots of the hair were loofened ; fo that baldnefs was a mark of fterility acquired by exceffive exertion. The figures of Pan have nearly the fame forms with that which I have here fuppofed to reprefent inert matter ; only that they are compounded with thofe of the goat, the fymbol of the creative power, by which matter was frudified and regulated. To this is fometimes added the organ of generation, of an enormous magnitude, to fignify the application of this power to its nobleft end, the procreation of fenfitive and rational beings. This compofition forms the common Priapus of the Roman poets, who was worfhipped among the other perfonages of the heathen mythology, but underftood by few of his ancient votaries any better than by the good women of Ifernia. His charac- teriftic organ is fometimes reprefented by the artifts in that ftate of tenfion and rigidity, which it aftumes when about to difcharge its fundions,^ and at other times in that ftate of tumid languor, which immediately fucceeds the performance.^ In the latter cafe he appears loaded with the produdions of nature, the refult of thofe prolific efforts, which in the former cafe he appeared fo well quali- fied to exert. I have in Plate v. given a figure of him in each fituation, one taken from a bronze in the Royal Mufeum of Portici, and the other from one in that of Charles Townley, Efq. It may

1 Plate V. Fig. i, from a bronze in the Mufeum at Portici.

2 Plate V. Fig. z, from a bronze in the Mufeum of C. Townley, Efq.


be obferved, that in the former the mufcles of the face are all ftrained and contraded, fo that every nerve feems to be in a ftate of tenfion ; whereas in the latter the features are all dilated and fallen, the chin repofed on the breaft, and the whole figure expreflive of languor and tatigue.

If the explanation which I have given of thefe androgynous figures be the true one, the fauns and faytrs, which ufually accompany them, muft reprefent abfiiradl emanations, and not incarnations of the creative fpirit, as when in copulation with the goat. The Creator himfelf is frequently reprefented in a human form ; and it is natural that his emanations fhould partake of the fame, though without having any thing really human in their compofition. It feems however to have been the opinion in fome parts of Afia, that the Creator was really of a human form. The Jewifh legiflator fays exprefsly, that God made man in his own image, and, prior to the creation of woman, created him male and female^ as he himfelf con- fequently was.^ Hence an ingenious author has fuppofed that thefe androgynous figures reprefented the firft individuals of the human race, who, pofTefTing the organs of both fexes, produced children of each. This feems to be the fenfe in which they were reprefented by fome of the ancient artifts ; but I have never met with any trace of it in any Greek author, except Philo the Jew; nor have I ever feen any monument of ancient art, in which the Bacchus, or Creator in a human form, was reprefented with the generative organs of both fexes. In the fymbolical images, the double nature is fre- quently expreffed by fome androgynous infedl, fuch as the fnail, which is endowed with the organs of both fexes, and can copulate reciprocally with either: but when the refinement of art adopted the human form, it was reprefented by mixing the charaders of the

1 Genes, c. i. ^ Philo. Je. Leg. Alleg. lib. ii.


male and female bodies in every part, preferving ftill the diftindive organs of the male. Hence Euripides calls Bacchus 6r]\v/j.op(l>o^,^ and the Chorus of Bacchanals in the fame tragedy addrefs him by mafculine and feminine epithets." Ovid alfo fays to him,

Tibi, cum fine cornibus adflas,

Virgineum caput eft. ^

alluding in the firft line to his taurine, and in the fecond to his androgynous figure.

The ancient theologifts were, like the modern, divided into feds; but, as thefe never difturbed the peace of fociety, they have been very little noticed. I have followed what I conceive to be the true Orphic fyftem, in the little analyfis which I have here endeavoured to give. This was probably the true catholic faith, though it differs confiderably from another ancient fyftem,defcribed by Ariftophanes;* which is more poetical, but lefs philofophical. According to this, Chaos,Night,Erebus,andTartarus,were the primitivebeings. Night, in the infinite breaft of Erebus, brought forth an egg, from which fprung Love, who mixed all things together; and from thence fprung the heaven, the ocean, the earth, and the gods. This fyftem is alluded to by the epithet nojevo'?, applied to the Creator in one of the Orphic Litanies:^ but this could never have been a part of the orthodox faith ; for the Creator is ufually reprefented as breaking the egg of chaos, and therefore could not have fprung from it. In the confufed medley of allegories and traditions contained in the Theogony attributed to Hefiod, Love is placed after Chaos and the Earth, but anterior to every thing elfe. Thefe differences are not to be wondered at; for Ariftophanes, fuppofing that he underftood the true fyftem, could not with fafety have revealed it, or even mentioned it any otherwife than under the ufual garb of fidion and

1 Bach. V. 3 5 8. 2 ^ B/30/*ie, Bpofite, UeBcovx^dovof evoat iroTVia. Vers. 504. 3 Metam. lib, iv. v. 18. ^ Opvi6. Vers. 693. ^ Hymn v.


allegory ; and as for the author of the Theogony, it is evident, from the ftrange jumble of incoherent fables which he has put together, that he knew very little of it. The fyftem alluded to in the Orphic verfes quoted in the Argonautics^ is in all probability the true one ; for it is not only confident in all its parts, but contains a phyfical truth, which the greateft of the modern difcoveries has only con- firmed and explained. The others feem to have been only poetical corruptions of it, which, extending by degrees, produced that un- wieldy fyftem of poetical mythology, which conftituted the vulgar religion of Greece.

The fauns and fatyrs, which accompany the androgynous figures on the ancient fculptures, are ufually reprefented as miniftering to the Creator by exerting their charafteriftic attributes upon them, as well as upon the nymphs, the paftive agents of procreation : but what has puzzled the learned in thefe monuments, and feems a contradidion to the general fyftem of ancient religion, is that many of thefe groups are in attitudes which are rather adapted to the grati- fication of difordered and unnatural appetites, than to extend pro- creation. But a learned author, who has thrown infinite light upon thefe fubjeds, has effedually cleared them from this fufpicion, by {bowing that they only took the moft convenient way to get at the female organs of generation, in thofe mixed beings who poftefl"ed both. ^ This is confirmed by Lucretius, who aflerts, that this attitude is better adapted to the purpofes of generation than any other." We may therefore conclude, that inftead of reprefenting them in the ad: of gratifying any disorderly appetites, theartifts meant to ftiow their modefty in not indulging their concupifcence, but in doing their duty in the way beft adapted to anfwer the ends propofed by the Creator.

On the Greek medals, where the cow is the fymbol of the deity,

1 Recberchei fur les Arts, liv. i. c. 3. "^ Lib. iv. v. 1260.


fhe is frequently reprefented licking a calf, which is fucking her.^ This is probably meant to fhow that the creative power cheriilies and nourillies, as well as generates ; for, as all quadrupeds lick their young, to refrefh and invigorate them immediately after birth, it is natural to fuppofe, according to the general fyftem of fymbolical writing, that this adion fhould be taken as an emblem of the effed it was thought to produce. On other medals the bull or cow is reprefented licking itfelf;- which, upon the fame principle, muft reprefent the ftrength of the deity refrefhed and invigorated by the exertion of its own nutritive and plaftic power upon its own being. On others again is a human head of an androgynous charafter, like that of the Bacchus Sicpv-r)^, with the tongue extended over the lower lip, as if to lick fomething.^ This was probably the fame fymbol, expreffed in a lefs explicit manner; it being the common praftice of the Greek artifts to make a part of a compofition fignify the whole, ofwhich I fhall foon have occafion to give fome inconteftable examples. On a Parian medal publifhed by Goltzius, the bull lick- ing himfelf is reprefented on one fide, accompanied by the afterifk of the fun, and on the other, the head with the tongue extended, having ferpents, the emblems of life, for hair.^ The fame medal is in my coUedion, except that the ferpents are not attached to the head, but placed by it as diftind fymbols, and that the animal lick- ing itfelf is a female accompanied by the initial of the word @eo9, inftead of the afterifk of the fun. Antiquarians have called this head a Medufa; but, had they examined it attentively on any well- preferved coin, they would have found that the expreffion of the features means luft, and not rage or horror.^ The cafe is, that

1 See Plate iv. Fig. 3, from a medal of Dyrrachium, belonging to me. ~ See Plate iii. Fig. 5, from one of Gortyna, in the Hunter Colleftion ; and Plate III. Fig. 4, from one of Parium, belonging to me.

3 See Plate iii. Fig. 4, and Plate in. Fig. 6, from Pellerin.

  • Goltz. I;i/u/. Tab. xix. Fig. 8. ^ See Plate in. Fig. 4.


antiquarians have been continually led into error, by feeking for explanations of the devices on the Greek medals in the wild and capricious ftories of Ovid's Metamorphojes, inftead of examining the firft principles ofancient religion contained intheOrphic Fragments, the writings of Plutarch, Macrobius, and Apuleius, and the Choral Odes of the Greek tragedies. Thefe principles were the fubjedls of the ancient myfteries, and it is to thefe that the fymbols on the medals always relate ; for they were the public ads of the ftates, and therefore contain the fenfe of nations, and not the caprices of individuals.

As M.D'Hancarville found a complete reprefentation of the bull breaking the egg of chaos in the fculptures of the Japanefe, when only a part of it appears on the Greek monuments ; fo we may find in a curious Oriental fragment, lately brought from the facred caverns of Elephanta, near Bombay, a complete reprefentation of the fymbol fo enigmatically exprefTed by the head above mentioned. Thefe caverns are ancient places of worfbip, hewn in the folid rock with immenfe labour and difficulty. That from which the fragment in queftion was brought, is 130 feet long by no wide, adorned with columns and fculptures finifhed in a ftyle very different from that of the Indian artifts.^ It is now negleded ; but others of the fame kind are ftill ufed as places of worfhip by the Hindoos, who can give no account of the antiquity of them, which muft neceffarily be very remote, for the Hindoos are a very ancient people ; and yet the fculptures reprefent a race of men very unlike them, or any of the prefent inhabitants of India. A fpecimen of thefe was brought from the ifland of Elephanta, in the Cumberland man-of-war, and now belongs to the mufeum of Mr. Townley. It contains feveral figures, in very high relief; the principal of which are a man and woman, in an attitude which I fhall not venture to defcribe, but only

1 Archoeol, vol. viii. p. 289.


obferve, that the adion, which I have Tuppofed to be a fymbol of refrefhment and invigoration, is mutually applied by both to their refpedive organs of generation/ the emblems of the aftive and paflive powers of procreation, which mutually cherifh and invigorate each other.

The Hindoos ftill reprefent the creative powers of the deity by thefe ancient fymbols, the male and female organs of generation; and worfhip them with the fame pious reverence as the Greeks and Egyptians did.'^ Like them too they have buried the original prin- ciples of their theology under a mafs of poetical mythology, fo that few of them can give any more perfed account of their faith, than that they mean to worfhip one firft caufe, to whom the fubordinate deitiesare merely agents, or moreproperlyperfonified modes of a(5lion^ This is the doftrine inculcated, and very fully explained, in the Bagvat Geeta; a moral and metaphyfical work lately tranflated from the Sanfcrit language, and faid to have been written upwards of four thoufand years ago. Krefhna, or the deity become incarnate in the fhape of man, in order to inftrud all mankind, is introduced, revealing to his difciples the fundamental principles of true faith, religion, and wifdom ; which are the exad: counterpart of the fyftem of emanations, fo beautifully defcribed in the lines of Virgil before cited. We here find, though in a more myftic garb, the fame one principle of life univerfally emanated and expanded, and ever par- tially returning to be again abforbed in the infinite abyfs of intelledlual being. This reabforption, which is throughout recommended as the ultimate end of human perfeftion, can only be obtained by a life of inward meditation and abftra(fl thought, too fteady to be interrupted by any worldly incidents, or difturbed by any tranfitory affed:ions,whether of mind or body. But as fuch a life is not in the

1 See Plate xi. ^ Sonnerat, Voyage aux Indes, T. I. p. 1 80.

3 Niebuhr, Voyages, vol. 11. p. 17.


power of any but a Brahman, inferior rewards, confifting of gradual advancements durintj; the tranfmigrations oi the foul, are held out to the foldier, the huOundman, and mechanic, accordingly as they fulfill the duties of their feveral ftations. Even thofe who ferve other G;ods are not excluded from the benefits awarded to every moral virtue; for, as the divine Teacher fays, If they do it with a firm belief, in Jo doing they involuntarily worjhip even me. 1 am he who partaketh of all worjhip, and I am their reward} This uni- verfal deity, being the caufe of all motion, is alike the caufe of creation, prefervation, and deftru(5lion ; which three attributes are all expreffed in the myftic fy liable om. To repeat this in filence, with firm devotion, and immoveable attention, is the fureft means of perfedion,^ and confequent reabforption, fince it leads to the contemplation oftheDeity, in his three great characfleriftic attributes. Thefirftandgreateft of thefe, the creative or generative attribute, feefns to have been originally reprefented by the union of the male and female organs of generation,which, under the title of the iJngam, ftill occupies the central and moft interior recefies of their temples or pagodas ; and is alfo worn, attached to bracelets, round their necks and arms.' In a little portable temple brought from the Rohilla country during the late war,and now in theBritifh Mufeum, this compofition appears mounted on a pedeftal, in the midft of a fquare area, funk in a block of white alabafter.' Round the pedeftal is a ferpent, the emblem of life, with his head refted upon his tail, to denote eternity, or the conftant return of time upon itfelt, whilft it flows through perpetual duration, in regular revolutions and ftated periods. From under the body of the ferpent fprings the lotus or water lily, the Nelumbo of Linnaeus, which overfpreads the whole of the area not occupied by the figures at the corners.

1 Bagvat Geeta, p. 8l. 2 Ihid. p. 74.

3 Sonnerat, l^oyage aux Indes, liv. ii. p. 180. Planche liv. •* See Plate xii.



This plant grows in the water, and, amongft its broad leaves, puts forth a flower, in the centre of which is formed the feed-vefl'el, fhaped like a bell or inverted cone, and punctuated on the top with little cavities or cells, in which the feeds grow/ The orifices of thefe cells being too fmall to let the feeds drop out when ripe, they flioot forth into new plants, in the places where they were formed ; the bulb of the vefl^el ferving as a matrice to nourilh them, until they acquire fuch a degree of magnitude as to burft it open and releafe themfelves ; after which, like other aquatic weeds, they take root wherever the current depofits them. This plant therefore, being thus produCtiveofitfelf, and vegetating from its own matrice, without being foftered in the earth, was naturally adopted as the fymbol of the productive power of the waters, upon which the aftive fpirit of the Creator operated in giving life and vegetation to matter. We accordingly find it employed in every part of the northern hemifphere, where the fymbolical religion, improperly called idolatry, does or ever did prevail. The facred images of the Tartars, Japonefe, and Indians, are almoft all placed upon it; of which numerous infl:ances occur in the publications of Kaempfer, Chappe D'Auteroche, and Sonnerat. The upper part of the bafe of the Lingam alfo confifl:s of this flower, blended and compofed with the female organ of generation which it fupports : and the ancient author of the Bagvat Geeta fpeaks of the creator Brahma as fitting upon his lotus throne.^ The figures of Ifis, upon the Ifiac Table, hold the fl:em of this plant, furmounted by the feed- vefl'el in one hand, and the crofs,^ reprefenting the male organs of generation, in the other ; thus fignifying the univerfal power, both adive and paflive, attributed to that goddefs. On the fame Ifiac Table is alfo the reprefentation of an Egyptian temple, the columns of which are exadly like the plant which Ifis holds in her hand,

1 See Plate xx. Fig. i. ^ Page 91.

3 See Plate xviil. Fig. 2, from Pignorius.


except that the ftem is made larger, in order to give it that ftability which is neceflary to fupport a roof and entablature.^ Columns and capitals of the fame kind are ftill exifting, in great numbers, among the ruins of Thebes, in Egypt; and more particularly upon thofe very curious ones in the ifland of Philae, on the borders of Ethiopia, which are, probably, the moft ancient monuments of art now extant; at leaft, if we except the neighbouring temples of Thebes. Both were certainly built when that city was the feat of wealth and empire, which it was, even to a proverb, during the Trojan war.^ How long it had then been fo, we can form no con- jedure; but that it foon after declined, there can be little doubt; for, when the Greeks, in the reign of Pfammeticus (generally computed to have been about 530 years after the Siege of Troy), firft became perfonally acquainted with the interior parts of that country, Memphis had been for many ages its capital, and Thebes was in a manner deferted. Homer makes Achilles fpeak of its immenfe wealth and grandeur, as a matter generally known and acknowledged; fo that it muft have been of long eftablifhed fame, even in that remote age. We may therefore fairly conclude, that the greateft part of the fuperb edifices now remaining, were executed, or at leaft begun, before that time; many of them being fuch as could not have been finiftied, but in a long term of years, even if we fuppofe the wealth and power of the ancient kings of Egypt to have equalled that of the greateft of the Roman emperors. The finiftiing of Trajan's column in three years, has been juftly thought a very extraordinary effort ; for there muft have been, at leaft, three hundred good fculptors employed upon it: and yet, in the neighbourhood of Thebes, we find whole temples of enormous magnitude, covered with figures carved in the hard and brittle granite of the Libyan mountains, inftead of the foft marbles of

' See Plate xviii. Fig. i, from Pignorius. ^ Horn. Iliati. i, ver. 381.



Paros and Carrara. Travellers, who have vifited that country have given us imperfeft accounts of the manner in which they are finifhed; but, if one may judge by thofe upon the obelifc of Ram- efes, now lying in fragments at Rome, they are infinitely more laboured than thofe of Trajan's Column. An eminent fculptor, with whom I examined that obelifc, was decidedly of opinion, that they muft have been finifhed in the manner of gems, with a grav- ing tool ; it appearing Impoffible for a chifel to cut red granite with fo much neatnefs and precifion. The age of Ramefes is uncertain ; but the generality of modern chronologers fuppofe that he was the fame perfon as Sefoftris, and reigned at Thebes about 1500 years before the Chriftian sera, and about 300 before the Siege of Troy. Their dates are however merely conjectural, when applied to events of this remote antiquity. The Egyptian priefts of the Auguftan age had a tradition, which they pretended to confirm by records, written in hieroglyphics, that their country had once poffeft the dominion of all Afia and Ethiopia, which their king Ramfes, or Ramefes, had conquered.'^ Though this account may be exagge- rated, there can be no doubt, from the buildings fl:ill remaining, but that they were once at the head of a great empire; for all hif- torians agree that they abhorred navigation, had no fea-port, and never enjoyed the benefits of foreign commerce, without which, Egypt could have no means of acquiring a fufficient quantity of fuperfluous wealth to eredfuch expenfive monuments, unlefs from tributary provinces ; efpecially if all the lower part of it was an uncultivated bog, as Herodotus, with great appearance of prob- ability, tells us it anciently was. Yet Homer, who appears to have known all that could be known in his age, and tranfmitted to pof- terity all he knew, feems to have heard nothing of their empire or conquefts. Thefe were obliterated and forgotten by the rife of

1 Tacit. An/i. lib. ii. c. 60.


new empires; but the renown of their ancient wealth ftill con- tinued, and afforded a familiar objed of comparifon, as that of the Mogul does at this day, though he is become one of the pooreft fovereigns in the world.

But far as thefe Egyptian remains lead us into unknown ages, the fymbols they contain appear not to have been invented in that country, but to have been copied from thofe of fome other people, ftill anterior, who dwelt on the other fide of the Erythraean ocean. One of the moft obvious of them is the hooded fnake, which is a reptile peculiar to the fouth-eaftern parts of Afia, but which I found reprefented, with great accuracy, upon the obelifc of Ramefes, and have alfo obferved frequently repeated on the Ifiac Table, and other fymbolical works of the Egyptians. It is alfo diftinguifhable among the fculptures in the facred caverns of the ifland ot Ele- phanta ; ^ and appears frequently added, as a charafteriftic fymbol, to many of the idols of the modern Hindoos, whofe abfurd tales concerning its meaning are related at length by M. Sonnerat ; but they are not worth repeating. Probably we fhould be able to trace the connexion through many more inftances, could we obtain accu- rate drawings of the ruins of Upper Egypt.

By comparing the columns which the Egyptians formed in imitation of the Nelumbo plant, with each other, and obferving their different modes of decorating them, we may difcover the origin of that order of architedure which the Greeks called Corin- thian, from the place of its fuppofed invention. We firft find the plain bell, or feed-vefTel, ufed as a capital, without any further alter- ation than being a little expanded at bottom, to give it {lability. '■^ In the next inftance, the fame feed-veflel is furrounded by the leaves of fome other plant ;^ which is varied in different capitals according

1 Niehuhr, Voyage, vol. ii. ^ See Plate xix. Fig. 6, from Norden.

3 See Plate xix. Fig. 7, Worn Norden.


to the different meanings intended to be expreffed by thefe addi- tional fymbols. The Greeks decorated it in the fame manner, with the leaves of the acanthus, and other forts of foliage ; whilft various other fymbols of their religion were introduced as ornaments on the entablature, inftead of being carved upon the walls of the cell, or fhafts of the columns. One of thefe, which occurs moft frequently, is that which the architeds call the honey-fuckle, but which, as Sir Jofeph Banks (to whom I am indebted for all that I have faid con- cerning the Lotus) clearly fhewed me,muft be meant for the young fhoots of this plant, viewed horizontally, juft when they have burft the feed-veffel, and are upon the point of falling out of it. The ornament is varioufly compofed on different buildings ; it being the pradice of the Greeks to make vegetable, as well as animal mon- fters, by combining different fymbolical plants together, and blend- ing them into one; whence they are often extremely difficult to be difcovered. But the fpecimen I have given, is fo ftrongly charader- ifed, that it cannot eafily be miftaken.^ It appears on many Greek medals with the animal fymbols and perfonified attributes of the Deity; which firft led me to imagine that it was not a mere orna- ment, but had fome myftic meaning, as almoft every decoration employed upon their facred edifices indifputably had.

The fquare area, over which the Lotus is fpread, in the Indian monument before mentioned, was occafionally floated with water; which, by means of a forcing machine, was firft thrown in a fpout upon the Lingam. The pouring of water upon the facred fymbols, is a mode of worfhip very much pradifed by the Hindoos, par- ticularly in their devotions to the Bull and the Lingam. Its mean- ing has been already explained, in the infl:ance of the Greek figure of Pan, reprefented in the ad: of paying the fame kind of worffiip to the fymbol of his own procreative power.^ The areas of the

1 Plate XIX. Fig. 3, from the Ionian Antiquities, Ch. ii. PI. xiii.

2 See Plate v. Fig. 1.


Greek temples were, in like manner, in fome inftances, floated with water; of which I fliall foon give an example. We alfo find, not unfrequently, little portable temples, nearly of the fame form, and of Greek workmanfliip : the areas of which were equally floated by means of a fountain in the middle, and which, by the figures in relief that adorn the fides, appear evidently to have been dedicated to the fame worfhip of Priapus, or the Lingam} The fquare area is likewife imprefled upon many ancient Greek medals, fometimes divided into four, and fometimes into a greater number of com- partments." Antiquarians have fuppofed this to be merely the im- preflion of fomething put under the coin, to make it receive the fl:roke of the die more fl:eadily ; but, befides that it is very ill adapted to this purpofe, we find many coins which appear, evidently, to have received the fl:roke of the hammer (for fl:riking with a balance is of late date) on the fide marked with this fquare. But what puts the quefliion out of all doubt, is, that impreflions of exadlly the fame kind are found upon the little Talifmans, or myfliic pafi:es, taken out of the Egyptian Mummies, which have no imprefiion whatever on the reverfe. On a little brafs medal of Syracufe, \ye alfo find the afterifc of the Sun placed in the centre of the fquare, in the fame manner as the Lingam is on the Indian monument.'^ Whv this quadrangular form was adopted, in prefer- ence to any other, we have no means of difcovering, from any known Greek or Egyptian fculptures; but from this little Indian temple, we find that the four corners were adapted to four of the

1 See Plate xiv. from one in the colleftion of Mr. Townley.

2 See Plate xiii. Fig. i, from one of Sclinus, and Fig. 3, from one of Syracufe, belonging to me.

3 See Plate xiii. Fig. 2, from one in the colleftion of Mr. Townley,

^ See Plate XIII. Fig. 3. The medal is extremely common, and the quadrangular imprefTion is obfcrvable upon a great number of the more ancient Greek medals, gene- rally with fome fymbol of the Deity in the centre. See thofe of Athens, Lyttus, Maronea, &c.


fubordinate deities, or perfonified modes of aftion of the great uni- verfal Generator, reprefented by the fymbol in the middle, to which the others are reprefented as paying their adorations, with geftures of humility and refped/

What is theprecife meaning of thefe four fymbolical figures, it is fcarcely pofTible for us to difcover, from the fmall fragments of the myftic learning of the ancients which are now extant. That they were however intended as perfonified attributes, we can have no doubt; for we are taught by the venerable authority of the Bagvat Geeta^ that all the fubordinate deities were fuch, or elfe canonifed men, which thefe figures evidently are not. As for the mythological tales now current in India, they throw the fame degree of light upon the fubjed, as Ovid's Metamorphofes do on the ancient theology of Greece; that is, juft enough to bewilder and perplex thofe who give up their attention to it. The ancient author before cited is deferving of more credit ; but he has faid very little upon the fymbolical worfhip. His work, neverthelefs, clearly proves that its principles were precifely the fame as thofe of the Greeks and Egyptians, among whofe remains of art or literature, we may, perhaps, find fome probable analogies to aid conjedure. The elephant is, however, a new fymbol in the weft ; the Greeks never having feen one of thofe animals before the expedition of Alexander,- although the ufe of ivory was familiar among them even in the days of Homer. Upon this Indian monument the head of the elephant is placed upon the body of a man with four hands, two of which are held up as prepared to ftrike with the in- ftruments they hold, and the other two pointed down as in adora- tion of the Lingam. This figure is called Gonnis and Pollear by the modern Hindoos ; but neither of thefe names is to be found in the Geeta, where the deity only fays, that the learned behold him

1 See Plate xii. ^ Paufan. lib. i. c. 12.


alike in the reverend Brahman -perfected in knowledge^ in the ox, and in the elephant. What peculiar attributes the elephant was meant to exprefs, the ancient writer has not told us ; but, as the charaderiftic properties of this animal are ftrength and fagacity, we may conclude that his image was intended to reprefent ideas fomewhat fimilar to thofe which the Greeks reprefented by that of Minerva, who was worfhipped as the goddefs of force and wifdom, of war and counfel. The Indian Gonnis is indeed male, and Minerva female; but this difference of fexes, however important it may be in phyfical, is of very little confequence in metaphyseal beings, Minerva being, like the other Greek deities, either male or female, or both.^ On the medals of the Ptolemies, under whom the Indian fymbols became familiar to the Greeks through the commerce of Alexandria, we find her repeatedly repre- fented with the elephant's fkin upon her head, inftead of a helmet; and with a countenance between male and female, fuch as the artift would naturally give her, when he endeavoured to blend the Greek and Indian fymbols, and mould them into one.'"^ Minerva is faid by the Greek mythologifts to have been born without a mother, from the head of Jupiter, who was delivered of her by the afiiftance of Vulcan. This, in plain language, means no more than that Hie was a pure emanation of the divine mind, operating by means of the univerfal agent fire, and not, like others of the allegorical per- fonages, fprung from any of the particular operations of the deity upon external matter. Hence fhe is faid to be next in dignity to her father, and to be endowed with all his attributes -^ for, as wifdom is the mofi: exalted quality of the mind, and the divine mind the perfedion of wifdom, all its attributes are the attributes of wifdom,

' Kpaev KUL 6t]\v^ e(f>v<;. Orph. et<? K6t]V.

2 See Plate xiii. Fig. 5, engraved from one belonging to me.

3 Her. lib. i. Od. 12. Callimach. €t9 \di]V.



under whofe diredion its power is always exerted. Strength and wifdom therefore, when confidered as attributes of the deity, are in fadl one and the fame. The Greek Minerva is ufually repre- fented with the fpear uplifted in her hand, in the fame manner as the Indian Gonnis holds the battle-axe.^ Both are given to denote the deftroying power equally belonging to divine wifdom, as the creative or preferving. The ftatue of Jupiter at Labranda in Caria held in his hand the battle-axe, inftead of thunder ; and on the medals of Tenedos and Thyatira, we find it reprefented alone as the fymbol of the deity, in the fame manner as the thunder is upon a great variety of other medals. / am the thunderbolt^ fays the deity in the Bagvat Geeta f and when we find this fuppofed engine of divine vengeance upon the medals, we muft not imagine that it is meant for the weapon of the fupreme god, but for the fymbol of his deftroying attribute. What inftrument the Gonnis holds in his other hand, is not eafily afcertained, it being a little injured by the carriage. In one of thofe pointed downwards he holds the Lotus flower, to denote that he has the diredion of the paftive powers of produdion ; and in the other, a golden ring or difc, which, I fhall foon fhew, was the fymbol by which many nations of the Eaft reprefented the fun. His head is drawn into a conical, or pyramidal form, and furrounded by an ornament which evidently reprefents flames ; the Indians, as well as the Greeks, looking upon fire as the eflence of all adive power ; whence perpetual lamps are kept burning in the holy of holies of all the great pagodas in India, as they were anciently in the temple of Jupiter Ammon, and rnany others both Greek and Barbarian f and the incarnate god in the Bagvat Geeta hys^ I am the fire reftding in the bodies of all things which have life} Upon the forehead of the Gonnis is a

1 See Plate xiii. Fig. ii, from a medal of Seleucus J. belonging to me.

2 Page 86. ^ See Plut. de Qrac. defeSi. ^ Page 113.



crefcent reprefenting the moon, vvhofe power over the waters of the ocean caufed her to be regarded as the fovereign of the great nutritive element, and whofe mild rays, being accompanied by the refrelliing dews and cooling breezes of the night, made her natu- rally appear to the inhabitants of hot countries as the comforter and reftorer of the earth. / am the moon (fays the deity in the Bag- vat Geeta) whofe nature it is to give the quality of tajle and relijh, and to cherijh the herbs and plants of the field} The light of the fun, moon, and fire, were however all but one, and equally emana- tions of the fupreme being. Know^ fays the deity in the fame ancient dialogue, that the light which proceedeth from the fun^ and illuminateth the worlds and the light which is in the moon and in the fire^ are fnine. I pervade all things in nature^ and guard them with my beams} In the figure now under confideration a kind of pre- eminence feems to be given to the moon over the fun ; proceeding probably from the Hindoos not poffefiing the true folar fyftem, which muft however have been known to the people from whom they learnt to calculate eclipfes, which they ftill continue to do, though upon principles not underftood by themfelves. They now place the earth in the centre of the univerfe, as the later Greeks did, among whom we alfo find the fame preference given to the lunar fymbol ; Jupiter being reprefented, on a medal of Antiochus VIII., with the crefcent upon his head, and the afterifc of the fun in his hand.'^ In a paffage of the Bagvat Geeta already cited we find the elephant and bull mentioned together as fymbols of the fame kind ; and on a medal of Seleucus Nicator we find them united by the horns of the one being placed on the head of the other.* The later Greeks alfo fometimes employed the elephant as the univerfal fymbol of the deity ; in which fenfe he is reprefented

^ Page 113. - Ibid. ^ Plate xiil. Fig. 10, from one belonging to me.

•* See Plate xiil. Fig 9, and Gefner, Num. Reg. Syr. Tab. vill. Fig. 23.


on a medal of Antiochus VI, bearing the torch, the emblem of the univerfal agent, fire, in his probofcis, and the cornucopia, the refult of its exertion, in his tail/

On another corner of the little Indian pagoda, is a figure with four heads, all of the fame pointed form as that of the Gonnis. This I take to reprefent Brahma, to whom the Hindoos attribute four mouths, and fay that with them he dilated the four Beads, or Veads, the myftic volumes of their religion."^ The four heads are turned difl-'erent ways, but exaftly refemble each other. The beards have been painted black, and are fharp and pointed, like thofe of goats, which the Greeks gave to Pan, and his fubordinate emanations, the Fauns and Satyrs. Hence I am inclined to believe, that the Brahma of the Indians is the fame as the Pan of the Greeks ; that is, the creative fpirit of the deity transfufed through matter, and afting in the four elements reprefented by the four heads. The Indians indeed admit of a fifth element, as the Greeks did likewife ; but this is never clafled with the reft, being of an aetherial and more exalted nature, and belonging peculiarly to the deity. Some call it heaven^ Jome light, and Jome ather, fays Plutarch." The Hindoos now call it Occus, by which they feem to mean pure aetherial light or fire.

This mode of reprefenting the allegorical perfonages of religion with many heads and limbs to exprefs their various attributes, and extenfive operation, is now univerfal in the Eaft,^ and feems anciently not to have been unknown to the Greeks, at leaft if we may judge by the epithets ufed by Pindar and other early poets.^ The union of two fymbolical heads is common among the fpeci- mens of their art now extant, as may be feen upon the medals of

1 See Plate xill. Fig 8, and Gefner, Num. Reg. Syr. Tab. vili. Fig. i.

2 Bagvat Geeta, Note 41. ^ B.i apud Delph. ^ See Kaempfer, Chappe d'Auteroche, Sonnerat, &c.

^ Such as €KaTO'yKe(f)a\o<i , eKarovraKapavo^, CKaroy^eLpo^^ &c.

OF PR UP US. r,i

Syracufe, Marfeilles, and many other cities. Upon a gem of this fort in the colletflion of Mr. Townley, the fame ideas which are exprefled on the Indian pagoda by the diftindl figures Brahma and Gonnis, are exprefTed by the united heads of Amnion and Minerva. Amnion, as before obferved, was the Pan of the Greeks, and Minerva is here evidently the fame as the Gonnis, being repre- fented after the Indian manner, with the elephant's fkin on her head, inftead of a helmet.^ Both thefe heads appear feparate upon different medals of the Ptolemies,^ under one of whom this gem was probably engraved, Alexandria having been for a long time the great centre of religions, as well as of trade and fcience.

Next to the figure of Brahma on the pagoda is the cow of plenty, or the female emblem of the generative or nutritive power of the earth ; and at the other corner, next to the Gonnis, is the figure of a woman, with a head of the fame conic or pyramidal form, and upon the front of it a flame of fire, from which hangs a crefcent.^ This feems to be the female perfonification of the divine attributes reprefented by the Gonnis or Pollear ; for the Hindoos, like the Greeks, worfhip the deity under both fexes, though they do not attempt to unite both in one figure. / am the father ajtd the mother of the world^ fays the incarnate god in the Bagvat Geeta.* Amongjl cattle^ adds he in a fubfequent part, / am the cow Kamadhook. I am the prolific Kandarp, the god of love:' Thefe two fentences, by being placed together, feem to imply fome relation between this god of love and the cow Kamad- hook; and, were we to read the words without pundluation, as they are in all ancient orthography, we fliould think the author placed the god of love amongft the cattle; which he would naturally do.

1 See Plate xiii. Fig. 7. 2 See Plate xiii. Fig. 5 and 6.

•' See Plate x!i. ■* Page 80. ^ Page 86.


if it were the cuftom of his religion to reprefent him by an animal fymbol. Among the Egyptians, as before obferved, the cow was the fymbol of Venus, the goddefs of love, and paffive generative power of nature. On the capitals of one of the temples of Philae we ftill find the heads of this goddefs reprefented of a mixed form ; the horns and the ears of the cow being joined to the beautiful features of a woman in the prime of life;^ fuch as the Greeks attributed to that Venus, whom they worfhipped as the mother of the prolific god of love, Cupid, who was the perfonification of animal defire or concupifcence, as the Orphic love, the father of gods and men, was of univerfal attraftion. The Greeks, who reprefented the mother under the form of a beautiful woman, naturally reprefented the fon under the form of a beautiful boy; but a people who reprefented the mother under the form of a cow, would as naturally reprefent the fon under the form of a calf This feems to be the cafe with the Hindoos, as well as with the Egyptians ; wherefore Kandarp may be very properly placed among the cattle.

By following this analogy, we may come to the true meaning of a much-celebrated objed of devotion, recorded by another ancient writer, of a more venerable charader. When the Ifraelites grew clamorous on account of the abfence of Mofes, and called upon Aaron to make them a god to go before them, he fet up a golden calf; to which the people facrificed and feafted, and then rofe up (as the tranflator fays) to play ; but in the original the term is more fpecific, and means, in its plain diredl fenfe, that particular fort of play which requires the concurrence of both fexes," and which was therefore a very proper conclufion of a facrifice to Cupid, though highly difpleafing to the god who had brought them out of Egypt. The Egyptian mythologifts, who appeared to have in-

1 See Plate xviii. Fig. 3. ~ Exod. xxxii.


vented this fecondary deity of love, were probably the inventors iikewife of a fecondary Priapus, who was the perfonification of that particular generative faculty, which fprings from animal defire, as the primary Priapus was of the great generative principle of the univerfe. Hence, in the allegories of the poets, this deity is faid to be a fon of Bacchus and Venus ; that is, the refult of the adive and pafTive generative powers of nature. The ftory of his being the fon of a Grecian conqueror, and born at Lampfacus, feems to be a corruption of this allegory.

Of all the nations of antiquity the Perfians were the moft fimple and dired: in the worfliip of the creator. They were the puritans of the heathen world, and not only rejedled all images of god or his agents, but alfo temples and altars, according to Herodotus,^ whofe authority I prefer to any other, becaufe he had an opportunity of converfing with them before they had adopted any foreign fuper- ftitions.' As they worfhipped the aetherial fire without any medium of perfonification or allegory, they thought it unworthy of the dignity of the god to be reprefented by any definite form, or cir- cumfcribed to any particular place. The univerfe was his temple, and the all-pervading element of fire his only fymbol. The Greeks appear originally to have held fimilar opinions ; for they were long without ftatues ;^ and Paufanias fpeaks of a temple at Sicyon, built by Adraftus,* who lived an age before the Trojan war ; which con- fided of columns only, without wall or roof, like the Celtic temples of our Northern anceftors, or the Pyrsetheia of the Perfians, which were circles of fl:ones, in the centre of which was kindled the facred fire,'^ the fymbol of the god. Homer frequently fpeaks of places of worfhip confifliing of an area and altar only (reytiei/o? ^oifio<i re),

1 Lib. i.

2 Hvdc, Anquetil, and other modern writers, have given us the operofe fuper- llitions of the prefent Parfees for the fimple theifm of the ancient Perfians.

3 Paufan. lib. vii. and ix. * Lib. ii. ^ Strab. lib. xv.


which were probably inclofures like thefe of the Perfians, with an altar in the centre. The temples dedicated to the creator Bacchus, which the Greek architects called hypathral^ feem to have been anciently of the fame kind; whence probably came the title 7repiKtovio<; [Jurrounded with columns) attributed to that god in the Orphic litanies.^ The remains of one of thefe are ftill extant at Puzzuoli near Naples, which the inhabitants call the Temple of Serapis : but the ornaments of grapes, vafes, &c. found among the ruins, prove it to have been of Bacchus. Serapis was indeed the fame deity worfhipped under another form, being equally a perfonifica- tion of the Tun.^ The architedure is of the Roman times ; but the ground plan is probably that of a very ancient one, which this was made to replace; for it exadly refembles that of a Celtic temple in Zeeland, publifhed in Stukeley's Itinerary.^ The ranges of fquare buildings which inclofe it are not properly parts of the temple, but apartments of the priefts, places for vidiims and facredutenfils, and chapels dedicated to fubordinate deities introduced by a more complicated and corrupt worfhip, and probably unknown to the founders of the original edifice.'^ The portico, which runs parallel with thefe buildings,^ inclofed the temenos, or area of facred ground, which in the pyr^etheia of the Perfians was circular, but is here quadrangular, as in the Celtic temple in Zeeland, and the Indian pagoda before defcribed. In the centre was the holy of holies, the feat of the god, confifting of a circle of columns raifed upon a bafe- ment, without roof or walls, in the middle of which was probably the facred fire, or fome other fymbol of the deity. *^ The fquare area in which it fl:ood, was funk below the natural level of the ground, and, like that of the little Indian pagoda, appears to have

  • Hymn. 46. ^ Diodor. Sic. lib. i. Macrob. Sat. lib. i. c. 20.

3 See Plate xv. Fig. i and 2, and Plate xiii. Fig. 4.

4 Plate XV. Fig. 2, a — a. ^ Plate xv. Fig. 2, b — b.

6 See Plate xv. Fig. 1, a, and Fig. 2, c. "> See Plate xv. Fig. i, b — b.


been occafionally floated with water, the drains and conduits being ftill to be feen/ as alfo feveral fragments of fculpture reprefenting waves, ferpents, and various aquatic animals, which once adorned the bafement." The Bacchus 7repLKiovio<; here worfhipped, was, as we learn from the Orphic hymn above cited, the fun in his charader of extinguifher of the fires which once pervaded the earth. This he was fuppofed to have done by exhaling the waters of the ocean, and fcattering them over the land, which was thus fuppofed to have acquired its proper temperature and fertility. For this reafon the facred fire, the effential image of the god, was furrounded by the element which was principally employed in giving effed: to the beneficial exertions of his great attribute.

Thefe Orphic temples were, without doubt, emblems of that fundamental principle of the myftic faith of the ancients, the folar fyftem ; fire, the efience of the deity, occupying the place of the fun, and the columns furrounding it as the fubordinate parts of the univerfe. Remains of the worfhip of fire continued among the Greeks even to the laft, as appears from the facred fires kept in the interior apartment, or holy of holies, of almoft all their temples, and places of worfhip: and, though the Ammonian Platonics, the lafl profefTors of the ancient religion, endeavoured to conceive fome- thing beyond the reach of fenfe and perception, as the efTence of their fupreme god; yet, when they wanted to illufhrate and explain the modes of aftion of this metaphyfical abftradion, who was more fubtle than intelligence itfelf, they do it by images and compa- rifons of light and fire.'^

From a paffage of Hecataeus, preferved by Diodorus Siculus, I think it is evident that Stonehenge, and all the other monuments of the fame kind found in the North, belonged to the fame religion,

1 See Plate xv. Fig. i, c — r. 2 See Plate xvn. Fig. i.

3 See Proclus in Theol. Platon. lib. i. c. 19.



which appears, at fome remote period, to have prevailed over the whole northern hemifphere. According to that ancient hiftorian, the Hyperboreans inhabited an ijland beyond Gaul, as large as Sicily^ in which Apollo was worjhipped in a circular temple confider able for its fixe and riches} Apollo, we know, in the language of the Greeks of that age, can mean no other than the fun, which, according to Cfefar, was worshipped by the Germans, when they knew of no other deities except fire and the moon.^ The ifland I think can be no other than Britain, which at that time was only known to the Greeks by the vague reports of Phoenician mariners, fo uncertain and obfcure, that Herodotus, the moft inquifitive and credulous of hiftorians, doubts of its exiftence.^ The circular temple of the fun being noticed in fuch flight and imperfeft accounts, proves that it muft have been fomething fingular and important ; for, if it had been an inconfiderable ftrudure, it would not have been mentioned at all ; and, if there had been many fuch in the country, the hiftorian would not have employed the fingular number. Stonehenge has certainly been a circular temple, nearly the fame as that already defcribed of the Bacchus TreptKiovio^ at Puzzuoli, except that in the latter the nice execution, and beautiful fymmetry of the parts, are in every refped the reverfe of the rude but majeftic fimplicity of the former ; in the original defign they differ but in the form of the area.* It may therefore be reafonably fuppofed, that we have

^'Naov a^ioXoyov^avaOrj/jiaat TroXXot? KeKO(T/xr)/jb€VOV^(r^atpoeiBr) rmaxni^o,'^'" Diod. Sic. lib. ii.

^De B. Gal. lib. vi. ^ Lib. iii. c. 15.

4 See Plate xv. Fig. 2 and 3. I have preferred Webb's plan of Stonehenge to Stukeley's and Smith's, after comparing each with the ruins now exifling. They differ materially only in the cell, which Webb fuppofes to have been a hexagon, and Stukeley a feftion of an ellipfis. The pofition of the altar is merely conjeftural; wherefore I have omitted it ; and I much doubt whether either be right in their plans of the cell, which feems, as in other Druidical temples, to have been meant for a circle, but incorreftly executed.


ftill the ruins of the identical temple defcribed by Hecataeus, who, being an Afiatic Greek, might have received his information from fome Phoenician merchant, who had vifited the interior parts of Britain when trading there for tin. Macrobius mentions a temple of the fame kind and form upon Mount Zilmilfus in Thrace, de- dicated to the fun under the title of Bacchus Sebazius/ The large obelifcs of ftone found in many parts of the North, fuch as thofe at Rudftone,'^ and near Boroughbridge in Yorkfhire,^ belong to the fame religion; obelifcs being, as Pliny obferves, facred to the fun, whofe rays they reprefented both by their form and name.* An ancient medal of Apollonia in Illyria, belonging to the Mufeum of the late Dr. Hunter, has the head of Apollo crowned with laurel on one fide, and on the other an obelifc terminating in a crofs, the leaft explicit reprefentation of the male organs of generation.^ This has exadly the appearance of one of thofe crofTes, which were ereded in church-yards and crofs roads for the adoration of devout perfons, when devotion was more prevalent than at prefent. Many of thefe were undoubtedly ereded before the eftablifhment of Chriftianity, and converted, together with their worfhippers, to the true faith. Anciently they reprefented the generative power of light, the effence of God ; for God is lights and never but in iin- approached light dwelt from eternity^ fays Milton, who in this, as well as many other inftances,has followed the Ammonian Platonics, who were both the restorers and corrupters of the ancient theology. They reftored it from the mafs of poetical mythology, under which it was buried, but refined and fublimated it with abftrad meta- phyiics, which foared as far above human reafon as the poetical

1 Sat. lib. i. c. 18. ^ Archceologia, vol. v.

3 Now called the Devil's Arrows. See Stukeley's Itin. vol. i. Table xc.

< Hijl. Nat. lib. xxxvi. fee. 14.

^ Plate X. Fig. i, and Numrni Pop. ^ Urb. Table x. Fig. 7.


mythology funk below it. From the ancient folar obelifcs came the fpires and pinnacles with which our churches are ftill decorated, fo many ages after their myftic meaning has been forgotten. Happily for the beauty of thefe edifices, it was forgotten ; other- wife the reformers of the laft century would have deflroyed them, as they did the croffes and images ; for they might with equal propriety have been pronounced heathenifh and prophane.

As the obelifc was the fymbol of light, fo was the pyramid of fire, deemed to be eflentially the fame. The Egyptians, among whom thefe forms are the moft frequent, held that there were two oppofite powers in the world, perpetually ading contrary to each other, the one creating, and the other destroying : the former they called Ofiris, and the latter Typhon.^ By the contention of thefe two, that mixture of good and evil, which, according to fome verfes of Euripides quoted by Plutarch," conftituted the harmony of the world, was fuppofed to be produced. This opinion of the necefTary mixture of good and evil was, according to Plutarch, of immemorial antiquity, derived from the oldeft theologifts and legillators, not only in traditions and reports, but in myfteries and facrifices, both Greek and barbarian.^ Fire was the efficient principle of both, and, according to fome of the Egyptians, that Eetherial fire which concentred in the fun. This opinion Plutarch controverts, faying that Typhon, the evil or defl:roying power, was a terrefl:rial or material fire, eflentially different from the ^therial. But Plutarch here argues from his own prejudices, rather than from the evidence of the cafe ; for he believed in an original evil principle coeternal with the good, and ading in per- petual oppofition to it; an error into which men have been led by forming falfe notions of good and evil, and confidering them as

1 Plutarch, de Is. iff Os. ~ Ibid., p. 455, Ed. Reiflcii.

3 Ibid., Ed. Reilkii.


felf-exifting inherent properties, inftead of accidental modifications, variable with every circumftance with which caufes and events are conneded. This error, though adopted by individuals, never formed a part either of the theology or mythology of Greece. Homer, in the beautiful allegory of the two cafks, makes Jupiter, the fupreme god, the diftributor of both good and evil.' The name of Jupiter, Zeu<?, was originally one of the titles or epithets of the fun, fignifying, according to its Qtyn\o\ogy,aweful or terrible;'^ in which fenfe it is ufed in the Orphic litanies.'^ Pan, the univerfal fubftance, is called the horned Jupiter (Zeu? Kepaar-q^) ; and in an Orphic fragment preferved by Macrobius^ the names of Jupiter and Bacchus appear to be only titles of the all-creating power of the lun.

A7A.a€ Zef, ALOvvcre, Trare^ nrovrov, irare^ air]<;^ 'HXie Trayyevero^.

In another fragment preferved by the fame author,' the name of Pluto, Ai8r]^, is ufed as a title of the fame deity ; who appears therefore to have prefided over the dead as well as over the living, and to have been the lord of deftrudion as well as creation and prefervation. We accordingly find that in one of the Orphic litanies now extant, he is expreffly called the giver of life, and the deftroyer.

The Egyptians reprefented Typhon, the deftroying power, under the figure of the hippopotamus or river-horfe, the moft fierce and deftrudive animal they knew;' and the Chorus in the Bacch^ of Euripides invoke their infpirer Bacchus to appear under the form of a bull, a many-headed ferpent, or fiaming lion ; ** which fhews that the moft bloody and deftrudlive, as well as the moft

1 //. cv, V. 527. 2 Damm. Lex. Etymol. ^ Hymn. x. v. 13.

■* Sat. lib. i. c. 23. -'* Sat. lib. i. c. 8. ^ Hymn. Ixxii. Ed. Gefri.

' Plutarch. Je Is. ^ Os. ^ V. 1015.


ufeful of animals, was employed by the Greeks to reprefent fome perfonified attribute of the god. M. D'Hancarville has alfo obferved, that the lion is frequently employed by the ancient artifts as a fymbol of the fun ; ^ and 1 am inclined to believe that it was to exprefs this deftroying power, no lefs requifite to preferve the harmony of the univerfe than the generating. In moft of the monuments of ancient art where the lion is reprefented, he appears with expreffions of rage and violence, and often in the ad of killing and devouring fome other animal. On an ancient farco- phagus found in Sicily he is reprefented devouring a horfe,^ and on the medals of Velia in Italy, devouring a deer;^ the former, as facred to Neptune, reprefented the fea ; and the latter, as facred to Diana, the produce of the earth ; for Diana was the fertility of the earth perfonified, and therefore is faid to have received her nymphs or produdlive minifters from the ocean, the fource of fecundity.* The lion, therefore, in the former inftance, appears as a fymbol of the fun exhaling the waters ; and in the latter, as withering and putrifying the produce of the earth. On the frieze of the Temple of Apollo Didymaeus, near Miletus, are monfters compofed of the mixt forms of the goat and lion, refting their fore feet upon the lyre of the god, which ftands between them.^ The goat, as I have already fhewn, reprefented the creative attribute, and the lyre, harmony and order; therefore, if we admit that the lion reprefented the deftroying attribute, this compofition will fignify, in the fymbolical language of fculpture, the harmony and order of the univerfe preferved by the regular and periodical operations of the

1 Recherches fur les Arts. See alfo Macrob. Sat. i. c. 21.

2 Houel, Voyage de la Sicile. Plate xxxvi.

3 Plate IX. Fig. 5, engraved from one belonging to me.

  • Callimach. Hymn. ad. Dian. v. 13. Getiitor Nympharum Oceanus. Catullus

in Cell. V. 84.

5 Ionian Antiquities, vol. i. c. 3. Plate ix.


creative and deftrudive powers. This is a notion to which men would be naturally led by obferving the common order and pro- grellion of things. The fame heat of the fun, which fcorched and withered the grafs in fummer, ripened the fruits in autumn, and cloathed the earth with verdure in the fpring. In one feafon it dried up the waters from the earth, and in another returned them in rain. It caufed fermentation and putrefadion, which deftroy one generation of plants and animals, and produce another in conftant and regular fucceffion. This contention between the powers of creation and deftrud;ion is reprefented on an ancient medal of Acanthus, in the mufeum of the late Dr. Hunter, by a combat between the bull and lion.^ The bull alone is reprefented on other medals in exadly the fame attitude and gefture as when fighting with the lion;- whence I conclude that the lion is there underftood. On the medals of Celenderis, the goat appears inftead of the bull in exadly the fame attitude of ftruggle and contention, but without the lion ;•' and in a curious one of very ancient but excellent workmanfhip, belonging to me, the ivy of Bacchus is placed over the back of the goat, to denote the power which he reprefents.'*

The mutual operation which was the refult of this contention, was fignified, in the mythological tales of the poets, by the loves of Mars and Venus, the one the adive power of deftrudlion, and the other the paffive power of generation. From their union is faid to have fprung the goddefs Harmony, who was the phyfical order of the univerfe perfonified. The fable of Ceres and Profer- pine is the fame allegory inverted ; Ceres being the prolific power

1 Plate IX. Fig. 4, ^ Nummi Vet. Pop. y JJrb. Table i. Fig. 16.

2 Plate IX. Fig. i z, from one of Afpendus in the fame Colleftion. See Nummi Vet. Pop. kff Vrb. Table viii. Fig. 20.

3 'Nummi Vet. Pop. ^ Vrb. Table xvi. Fig. 13. " Plate IX. Fig. 13.


of the earth perfonlfied, and hence called by the Greeks Mother Earth [T-n or A'n-fir}Tr)^). The Latin name Ceres alfo fignifying Earth, the Roman C being the fame originally, both in figure and power as the Greek F,^ which Homer often ufes as a mere guttural afpirate, and adds it arbitrarily to his words, to make them more folemnandfonorous.'^ The guttural afpirates and hiffing termina- tions more particularly belonged to the i^olic dialed, from which the Latin was derived ; wherefore we need not wonder that the fame word, which by the Dorians and lonians was written Epa and Epe, fhould by the ^olians be written Te/ae? or Ceres, the Greeks always accommodating their orthography to their pronunciation. In an ancient bronze at Strawberry Hill this goddefs is reprefented fitting, with a cup in one hand, and various forts of fruits in the other ; and the bull, the emblem of the power of the Creator, in her lap.'^ This compofition fhews the frudification of the earth by the defcent of the creative fpirit in the fame manner as defcribed by Virgil : —

Vere tument terras, et genitalia femina polcunt ; Turn pater omnipotens foecundis imbribus sether Conjugis in gremium laetae defcendit, & omnes Magnus alit, magno commixtus corpore, fcetus.^

^ther and water are here introduced by the poet as the two pro- lific elements which fertilize the earth, according to the ancient fyftem of the Orphic philofophy, upon which the myftic theology was founded. Proferpine, or IlepaL(j)oveLa, the daughter of Ceres, was, as her Greek name indicates, the goddefs of deftrudion, in which charader fhe is invoked by Althaea in the ninth Iliad ; but neverthelefs we often find her on the Greek medals crowned with

1 See S. C. Marcian, and the medals of Gela and Agrigentum.

2 As in the word eptS^iro^, ufually written by him €pLySii7rovt]^, or creator of both fexes, known by the effeminate mold of his limbs and coun- tenance; and on the other, a tiger, leaping up, and devouring the grapes which fpring from the body of the perfonified vine, the hands of which are employed in receiving another clufler from the Bacchus. This compofition reprefents the vine between the crea- ting and defliroying attributes of god; the one giving it fruit, and the other devouring it when given. The tiger has a garland of ivy round his neck, to fhow that the defi:royer was co-eflential with the creator, of whom ivy, as well as all other ever-greens, was an emblem reprefenting his perpetual youth and viridity.^

The mutual and alternate operation of the two great attributes of creation and defl:ru<5tion, was not confined by the ancients to plants and animals, and fuch tranfitory productions, but extended to the univerfe itfelf. Fire being the eflential caufe of both, they believed that the conflagration and renovation of the world were periodical and regular, proceeding from each other by the laws of its own confliitution, implanted in it by the creator, who was alfo the deftroyer and renovator f for, as Plato fays, all things arife from one, and into one are all things refolved.* It muft be obferved, that, when the ancients fpeak of creation and deftru6lion, they mean only formation and difTolution; it being univerfally allowed, through all fyftems of religion, or feds of philofophy, that nothing could come from nothings and that no power whatever could annihilate that

1 See Plate xxi. Fig. 7. 2 Strabo, lib. xv. p. 712.

3 Brucker, Hi/i. Crit. Philof. vol. i. part 2, lib. i. Plutarch, de Placit. Philof. lib. ii. c. 18. Lucretius, lib. v. ver. 92. Cic. de Nat. Deor. lib. ii.

^ l£j^ kvo<i rairavra'^iveadaL^KaLeL'; r^ avTov avaXveadai^'iTi Pha;d. The fame dogma is IHII more plainly inculcated by the ancient Indian author before cited, fee Bagvat Geeta, Left. ix.


which really exijied. The bold and magnificent idea of a creation from nothing was referved for the more vigorous faith, and more enlightened minds of the moderns,^ who need feek no authority to confirm their belief; for, as that which is felf-evident admits of no proof, fo that which is in itfelf impoflible admits of no refutation. The fable of the ferpent Pytho being deftroyed by Apollo, probably arofe from an emblematical compofition, in which that god was reprefented as the deftroyer of life, of which the ferpent wasafymbol. Pliny mentions a ftatue of him by Praxiteles, which was much celebrated in his time, called ^avpoKTwv [the Lizard-killer. Y The lizard, being fuppofed to live upon the dews and moifture of the earth, is employed as the fymbol of humidity in general ; fo that the god deftroying it, fignifies the fame as the lion devouring the horfe. The title Apollo, I am inclined to believe, meant originally the Deftroyer, as well as the Deliverer ; for, as the ancients fuppofed deftrudion to be merely diflblution, the power which delivered the particles of matter from the bonds of attraction, and broke the Sea/xov Trepi/SptOr} epcoro^, was in faft the deftroyer.^ It is, probably, for this reafon, that fudden death, plagues, and epidemic difeafes, are faid by the poets to be fent by ■ this god ; who is, at the fame time, defcribed as the author of medicine, and all the arts employed to preferve life. Thefe attri- butes are not joined merely becaufe the deftroyer and preferver were efientially the fame ; but becaufe difeafe neceflarily precedes

^ The word in Gejiejis upon which it is founded, conveyed no fuch fenfe to the ancients ; for the Seventy tranflated it eiroirjo-e, which figmiies forme J, or fajh toned.

2 Hijl. Nat. lib. xxxiv. c. 8. Many copies of it are ftill extant. Winkleman has publifhed one from a bronze of Cardinal Albani's. Monum. J?itichi inediti, Plate XL.

3 The verb Xuo), from which Apollo is derived, fignifies in Homer both to free and to diflblve or dellroy, //. a, ver. 20 ; //. /, ver. 25. Macrobius derives the title from airoXXvfii, to dejlroy ; but this word is derived from \vo3 Sat. lib. i. c. 17.


cure, and is the caufe of its being invented. The God of Health is faid to be his fon, becaufe the health and vigour of one being are fupported by the decay and diflblution of others which are ap- propriated to its nourifhment. The bow and arrows are given to him as fymbols of his charaderiftic attributes, as they are to Diana, who was the female perfonification of the deftrudiive, as well as the produd:ive and preferving powers. Diana is hence called the triple Hecate, and reprefented by three female bodies joined together. Her attributes were however worshipped feparately ; and fome nations revered her under one character, and others under another. Diana of Ephefus was the produ6tive and nutritive power, as the many breafts and other fymbols on herftatues imply ;^ whilft Bpt/ico, the T'auric or Scythic Diana, appears to have been the deftruftive, and therefore was appeafed with human facrifices, and other bloody rites.^ She is reprefented fometimes ftanding on the back of a bull,'* and fometimes in a chariot drawn by bulls ;* whence fhe is called by the poets TavpoiroXa^ and Bocov eXarcipa^' Both compo- fitions fhow the pafhve power of nature, whether creative or deftrudlive, fuftained and guided by the general adive power of the creator, of which the fun was the centre, and the bull the fymbol.

It was obferved by the ancients, that the deftrucflive power of the fun was exerted moft by day, and the creative by night : for it was in the former feafon that he dried up the waters, withered the herbs, and produced difeafe and putrefadion ; and in the latter,

' Hieron. Comment, in Paul Epiji. ad Ephes. ^ Paufan. lib. iii. c. i6.

3 See a medal of Auguftus, publifhed by Spanheim. Not. in Callim. Hymn, ad Dian. ver. 113.

  • Plate VI., from a bronze in the mufeum of C. Townley, Efq.

^ Sophoclis Ajax, vtr. 172.

6 Nonni Dionys. lib. i. the title Tau/jOTToXo? was fometimes given to Apollo, Euilath. Schol. in Dionys. YiepLTj^rja.^ ver. 609.


that he returned the exhalations in dews, tempered with the genial heat which he had transfufed into the atmofphere, to reftore and replenifh the wafte of the day. Hence, when they perfonified the attributes, they revered the one as the diurnal, and the other as the no5furnal fun, and in their myftic worfhip, as Macrobius fays,^ called the former Apollo, and the latter Dionyfus or Bacchus. The mythological perfonages of Caftor and Pollux, who lived and died alternately, were allegories of the fame dogma ; hence the two aflerifcs, by which they are diftinguifhed on the medals of Locri, Argos, and other cities.

The p^ans, or war-fongs, which the Greeks chanted at the on- fet of their battles,^ were originally fung to Apollo,^ who was called Pseon ; and Macrobius tells us,* that in Spain, the fun was wor- fhipped as Mars, the god of war and deftrudion, whose ftatue they adorned with rays, like that of the Greek Apollo. On a Celtiberian or Runic medal found in Spain, of barbarous workmanlhip, is a head furrounded by obelifcs or rays, which I take to be of this deity .'^ The hairs appear ered, to imitate flames, as they do on many of the Greek medals ; and on the reverfe is a bearded head, with a fort of pyramidal cap on, exadly refembling that by which the Romans conferred freedom on their (laves, and which was therefore called the cap of liberty. On other Celtiberian medals is a figure on horfeback, carrying a fpear in his hand, and having the fame fort of cap on his head, with the word Helman written

1 Sat. lib. i. c. i8. ^ Thucyd. lib. vii.

3 Homer. //. a, v. 472. ^ Sat. lib. i. c. 19.

5 Plate X Fig. 2, engraven from one belonging to me. I have fince been con- firmed in this conjefture by obferving the charafters of Mars and Apollo mixt on Greek coins. On a Mamertine one belonging to me is a head with the youthful features and laurel crown of Apollo ; but the hair is Ihort, and the infcription on the exergue denotes it to be Mars. See Plate xvi. Fig. 2.

6 It may be feen with the dagger on the medals of Brutus.


under him/ in characflers which are fomething between the old Runic and Pelafgian ; but fo near to the latter, that they are eafily underftood.^ This figure feems to be of the fame perfon as is reprefented by the head with the cap on the preceding medal, who can be no other than the angel or minifter of the deity of death, as the name implies; for Hela, or Hel, was, among the Northern nations, the goddefs of death,^ in the fame manner as Perfiphoneia or Brimo was among the Greeks. The fame figure appears on many ancient Britifh medals, and alfo on thofe of feveral Greek cities, particularly thofe of Gela, which have the Taurine Bacchus or Creator on the reverfe/ The head which I have fuppofed to be the Celtiberian Mars, or deftrudive power of the diurnal fun, is beardlefs like the Apollo o^ the Greeks, and, as far as can be dif- covered in fuch barbarous fculpture, has the fame androgynous features/ We may therefore reafonably fuppofe, that, like the Greeks, the Celtiberians perfonified the deftrudlive attribute under the different genders, accordingly as they applied it to the fun, or fiibordinate elements ; and then united them, to fignify that both were effentially the fame. The Helman therefore, who was the fame as the MoipajTjrr]'; or AtaKTco^ of the Greeks, may with equal propriety be called the minifter o{ both or either. The fpear in his hand is not to be confidered merely as the implement of deftrudion, but as the fymbol of power and command, which it was in Greece and Italy, as well as all over the North. Hence evdwetv Sopi^ was

^ See Plate ix. Fig. 9, from one belonging to me.

2 The iirft is a mixture of the Runic Hagle and Greek H. The fecond is the Runic Laugur, which is alfo the old Greek A, as it appears on the vafe of the Calydonian Boar in the Britifh Mufeum. The other three differ little from the common Greek.

3 Edda. Fab. xvi. D'Hancarville, Recherches fur les Arts, liv. ii. c. 1. ^ See Plate ix. Fig. 11, from one belonging to me.

^ Sec Plate x. Fig. 2,


to govern^ and venire Juh hajid^ — to be fold as a Jlave. The ancient Celtes and Scythians paid divine honors to the fword, the battle- axe, and the fpear ; the firft of which was the fymbol by which they reprefented the fupreme god : hence to fwear by the edge of the fword was the moft facred and inviolable of oaths.'"^ Euri- pides alludes to this ancient religion when he calls a fword opKcov ^i(j)o<; ; and i^fchylus fhows clearly, that it once prevailed in Greece, when he makes the heroes of the Thebaid fwear by the point of the fpear [o/xwo-l 8'acxM^^)- Homer fometimes ufes the word api]<; to fignify the God of War, and fometimes a weapon : and we have fufficient proof of this word's being of Celtic origin in its affinity with our Northern word PFar; for, if we write it in the ancient manner, with the Pelafgian Fau, or ^Eolian Digamma^ Yapr)<t {JVares)^ it fcarcely differs at all.

Behind the bearded head, on the firft-mentioned Celtiberian medal is an inftrument like a pair of fire-tongs, or blackfmith's pincers ;^ from which it feems that the perfonage here reprefented is the fame as the 'H^ato-To? or Vulcan of the Greek and Roman mythology. The fame ideas are expreffed fomewhat more plainly on the medals of ^fernia in Italy, which are executed with all the refinement and elegance of Grecian art.^ On one fide is Apollo, the diurnal fun, mounting in his chariot; and on the other a beardlefs head, with the fame cap on, and the fame inftrument behind it, but with the youthful features and elegant charader of countenance ufually attributed to Mercury, who, as well as Vulcan, was the God of Art and Mechanifm ; and whofe peculiar office it alfo was to condud the fouls of the deceafed to their eternal manfions, from whence came the epithet Ata/crw^, applied to him by Homer. He was, therefore, in this refped, the fame as the Helman of the

' Eurip. Hecuba. ^ Mallet, hitrod. a r HiJI. de Datiemarc, c. 9.

3 'ETTTaeTTt S-nfia<;, v. 535. ^ Plate x. Fig. 2.

^ See Plate x. Fig. 6, from one belonging to me.


Celtes and Scythians, who was fuppofed to condudl the fouls of all who died a violent death (which alone was accounted truly happy) to the palace of Valhala.^ It feems that the attributes of the deity which the Greeks reprefented by the mythological perfonages of Vulcan and Mercury, were united in the Celtic mythology. Caefar tells us that the Germans worfhipped Vulcan, or fire, with the fun and moon ; and I fhall foon have occafion to fhow that the Greeks held fire to be the real conductor of the dead, and emanci- pator of the foul. The i^fernians, bordering upon the Samnites, a Celtic nation, might naturally be fuppofed to have adopted the notions of their neighbours, or, what is more probable, preferved the religion of their anceftors more pure than the Hellenic Greeks. Hence they reprefented Vulcan, who, from the infcription on the exergue of their coins, appears to have been their tutelar god, with the charafteriftic features of Mercury, who was only a different perfonification of the fame deity.

At Lycopolis in Egypt the destroying power of the fun was repre- fented by a wolf; which, as Macrobius fays, was worfhipped there as Apollo.'^ The wolf appears devouring grapes in the ornaments of the temple of Bacchus Tre/at/ciowo? atPuzzuoli f and on the medals of Cartha he is furrounded with rays, which plainly proves that he is there meant as a fymbol of the fun."* He is alfo reprefented on moft of the coins of Argos,^ where I have already fhown that the diurnal fun Apollo, the light-extending god, was peculiarly wor- fhipped. We may therefore conclude, that this animal is meant for one of thfe myflic fymbols of the primitive worfhip, and not, as fome antiquarians have fuppofed, to commemorate the mvtho- logical tales of Danaus or Lycaon, which were probably invented,

^ Mallet, ////?. de Daneviarc. Introd. c. 9. 2 5^;/ \\\^ \ q 17

3 Plate XVI. Fig. i. ^ Plate x. Fig. 8, from one belonging to me.

^ Plate IX. Fig. 7, from one belonging to me.



like many others of the fame kind, to fatisfy the inquifitive igno- rance of the vulgar, from whom the meaning of the myftic fymbols, the ufual devices on the medals, was ftridly concealed. In the Celtic mythology, the fame fymbol was employed, apparently in the fame fenfe, Lok, the great deftroying power of the univerfe, being reprefented under the form of a wolf.^

The Apollo Didymaeus, or double Apollo, was probably the two perfonifications, that of the deftroying, and that of the creating power, united; whence we may perceive the reafon why the orna- ments before defcribed fhould be upon his temple.^ On the medals of Antigonus, king of Afia, is a figure with his hair hanging in artificial ringlets over his fhoulders, like that of a woman, and the whole compofition, both of his limbs and countenance, remarkable for extreme delicacy, and feminine elegance.^ He is fitting on the prow of a fhip, as god of the waters ; and we fhould, without hefitation, pronounce him to be the Bacchus St^y?^?, were it not for the bow that he carries in his hand, which evidently fiiows him to be Apollo. This I take to be the figure under which the refinement of art (and more was never fhown than in this medal) reprefented the Apollo Didymaeus, or union of the creative and deftrudive powers of both fexes in one body.

As fire was the primary eflence of the adive or male powers of creation and generation, fo was water of the pafTive or female. Appian fays, that the goddefs worfhipped at Hierapolis in Syria was called by Jome Venus, by others Juno, and by others held to be the cauje which produced the beginning and feeds of things from humidity. Plutarch defcribes her nearly in the fame words f and

' Mallet, hitrod. a V Hijl. de Danemarc. ■^ See loniaii Antiq. vol. i. c. 3, PI. ix.

' See Plate x. Fig. 7, from one belonging to me. Similar figures are on the coins of moil of the Seleucids. " ' De Bella Parthico. ' In Craffo.

OF PR] A PUS. 83

the author of the treatife attributed to Lucian^ {lySyf/ie was Nature, the parent of things, or the creatrejs. She was therefore the fame as Ifis, who was the prolific material upon which both the creative and deftru6live attributes operated." As water was her terreftrial eflence, so was the moon her celeftial image, whofe attractive power, heaving the waters of the ocean, naturally led men to afTociate them. The moon was alfo fuppofed to return the dews which the fun exhaled from the earth; and hence her warmth was reckoned to be moiftening, as that of the fun was drying.^ The Egyptians called her the Mother of the World, becaufe fhe fowed and fcattered into the air the prolific principles with which fhe had been impreg- nated by the fun.* Thefe principles, as well as the light by which fhe was illumined, being fuppofed to emanate from the great foun- tain of all life and motion, partook of the nature of the being from which they were derived. Hence the Egyptians attributed to the moon, as well as to the fun, the adive and pafiive powers of generation,^ which were both, to ufe the language of the fcholaftics, ejjentially the fame, though /orw^z/Zy different. This union is repre- fented on a medal of Demetrius the fecond, king of Syria, where the goddefs of Hierapolis appears with the male organs of genera- tion flicking out of her robe, and holding the thyrfus of Bacchus, the emblem of fire, in one hand, and the terreftrial globe, repre- fenting the fubordinate elements, in the other. Her head is crowned with various plants, and on each fide is an aflerifc repre- fenting (probably) the diurnal and nodiurnal iun, in the fame manner as when placed over the caps of Caflor and Pollux.^ This is not the form under which fhe was reprefented in the temple at

1 De Dea Syrid. 2 Plutarch. J e If. iff Of.

3 Calor foHs arefacit, lunaris humeSiat. Macrob. Sat. vn. c. 10.

  • Plutarch, de If isf Of •'• Ibid,

s Plate X. Fig. 5, from Haym, Tcf Brit. p. 70.

■^ See Plate ix. Fig. 7.


Hierapolis, when the author of the account attributed to Lucian vifited it ; which is not to be wondered at, for the figures of this uni verfal goddefsjbeing merely emblematical,were compofed accord- ing to the attributes which the artifts meant particularly to exprefs. She is probably reprefented here in the form under which fhe was worfhipped in the neighbourhood of Cyzicus, where fhe was called A/ore/ii? UpLaTTivT], tht Priapic Diana} In the temple at Hierapolis the adtive powers imparted to her by the Creator were reprefented by immenfe images of the male organs of generation placed on each fide of the door. The meafures of thefe muft necefi"arily be corrupt in the prefent text of Lucian ; but that they were of an enormous fize we may conclude from what is related of a man's going to the top of one of them every year, and refiding there feven days, in order to have a more intimate communication with the deity, while praying for the profperity of Syria.^ Athenaeus relates, that Ptolemy Philadelphus had one of 120 cubits long carried in procefiion at Alexandria,^ of which the poet might juflily have faid —

Horrendum protendit Mentula contum Quanta queat vaftos Thetidis fpumantis hiatus; Quanta queat prifcamque Rheam, magnamque parentem Naturam, folidis naturam implere medullis. Si foret immenfos, quot ad allra volantia currunt, Conceptura globos, et tela trifulca tonantis, Et vaga concufTum motura tonitrua mundum.

This was the real meaning of the enormous figures at Hierapolis : — they were the generative organs of the creator perfonified, with which he was fuppofed to have impregnated the heavens, the earth, and the waters. Within the temple were many fmall ftatues of men with thefe organs difproportionably large. Thefe were the angels or attendants of the goddefs, who ailed as her minifl:ers of

' Plutarch. /» Lucullo. " Lucian. de Dea Syria. ^ Deipnof. lib.


creation in peopling and frudlifying the earth. The ftatue of the goddefs herlt'lf was in the fanduary of the temple; and near it was the ftatue of the creator, whom the author calls Jupiter, as he does the goddefs, Juno; by which he only means that they were the fupreme deities of the country where worfiiipped. She was borne by lions, and he by bulls, to fhow that nature, the paftive producftive power of matter, was fuftained by anterior deftruftion, whilft the ietherial fpirit, or a(5tive productive power, was fuftained by his own ftrength only, of which the bulls were fymbols.^ Be- tween both was a third figure, with a dove on his head, which fome thought to be Bacchus." This was the Holy Spirit, the firft- begotten love, or plaftic nature, (of which the dove was the image when it really deigned to defcend upon man,'^) proceeding from, and confubftantial with both ; for all three v^trt but perfonifications o^ one. The dove, or fome fowl like it, appears on the medals of Gortyna in Crete, afting the fame part with Didynna, the Cretan Diana, as the fwan is ufually reprefented adling with Leda.* This compofition has nearly the fame fignification as that before defcribed of the bull in the lap of Ceres, Diana being equally a perfonification of the produdive power of the earth. It may feem extraordinary, that after this adventure with the dove, ftie fhould ftill remain a virgin ; but myfteries of this kind are to be found in all religions. Juno is faid to have renewed her virginity every year by bathing in a certain fountain ; '"' a miracle which I believe even modern legends cannot parallel.

• The adive and pajjive powers of creation are called male and female by the Ammonian Platonics. See Proclus in Theol. Platon. lib. i. c. 28.

2 Lucian. de Dea Syria. 3 Matth. ch. iii. ver. 17.

  • See Plate in. Fig. 5. KaXbai 8e Ttjv Aprefiiv (^paK€<i BevSeiav, K/3j;Te? Se

AiKTVVvav. Pala;ph. Je bicreJ. Tab. xxxi. See alio Diodor. Sic. lib. v. & Euripid. Hippo I. V. 145.

^ Paulan. lib. ii. c. 38.


In the vifion of Ezekiel, God is defcribed as defcending upon the combined forms of the eagle, the bull, and the lion,^ the emblems of the fetherial fpirit, the creative and deftru6live powers, which were all united in the true God, though hypoftatically divided in the Syrian trinity. Man was compounded with them, as reprefenting the real image of God, according to the Jewifh theology. The cherubim on the ark of the covenant, between which God dwelt,^ were alfo compounded of the fame forms,^ fo that the idea of them muft have been prefent to the prophet's mind, previous to the apparition which furnifhed him with the defcription. Even thofe on the ark of the covenant, though made at the exprefs command of God, do not appear to have been original ; for a figure exadly anfwering to the defcription of them appears among thofe curious ruins exifting at Chilminar, in Perfia, which have been fuppofed to be thofe of the palace of Perfepolis, burnt by Alexander ; but for what reafon, it is not eafy to conjefture. They do not, certainly, anfwer to any ancient defcription extant of that celebrated palace; but, as far as we can judge of them in their prefent ftate, appear evidently to have been a temple.* But the Perfians, as before obferved, had no inclofed temples or ftatues, which they held in fuch abhorrence, that they tried every means poffible to deftroy thofe of the Egyptians; thinking it unworthy of the majefty of the deity to have his all-pervading prefence limited to the boundary of an edifice, or likened to an image of flone or metal. Yet, among the ruins at Chilminar, we not only find many flatues, which are evidently of ideal beings,' but alfo that remarkable emblem of the deity, which diflinguifhes almofl all the

1 Ezek. ch. i. ver. lo, with Lowth's Comm.

2 Exod. ch. XXV. ver. 22.

3 Spencer de Leg. Ritual Vet. Hebraor. lib. iii. diflert. 5.

4 See Le Bruyn, Vo;jage en Perfe, Planche cxxiii.

5 See Le Bruyn and Niebuhr,


Egyptian temples now extant.^ The portals are alfo of the fame form as thofe at Thebes and Philit ; and, except the hieroglyphics which diftinguifh the latter, are finifhed and ornamented nearly in the fame manner. Unlefs, therefore, we fuppofe the Perfians to have been fo inconfiftent as to ered; temples in dired: contradiction to the firft principles of their own religion, and decorate them with fymbols and images,which they held to be impious and abominable, we cannot fuppofe them to be the authors of thefe buildings. Neither can we fuppofe the Parthians, or later Perfians, to have been the builders of them ; for both the ftyle of workmanfhip in the figures, and the forms of the letters in the infcriptions, denote a much higher antiquity, as will appear evidently to any one who will take the trouble of comparing the drawings publifhed by Le Bruyn and Niebuhr with the coins of the Arfacidae and SaiTanidas. Almoft all the fymbolical figures are to be found re- peated upon different Phoenician coins ; but theletters of the Phceni- cians, which are faid to have come to them from the Affyrians, are much lefs fimple, and evidently belong to an alphabet much further advanced in improvement. Some of the figures are alfo obfervable upon the Greek coins, particularly the bull and lion fighting, and the myftic flower, which is the confl:ant device of the Rhodians. The ftyle of workmanftiip is alfo exadly the fame as that of the very ancient Greek coins of Acanthus, Celendaris, and Lefbos; the lines being very ftrongly marked, and the hair exprefled by round knobs. The wings likewife of the figure, which refembles the Jewifli cherubim, are the fame as thofe upon feveral Greek fculptures now extant ; fuch as the little images of Priapus attached to the ancient bracelets, the compound figures of the goat and lion

^ See Plate xviii. Fig. i from the Ifiac Table, and Plate xix. Fig. 5 from Nie- buhr's prints of Chilminar. See alio Plate xviil. Fig. 2 and Plate xix. Fig i from the Ifiac Tables and the Egyptian Portals publifhed by Norden and Pocockc, on every one of which this fingular emblem occurs.


upon the frieze of the Temple of Apollo Didymaeus, &c. &c.^ They are likewife joined to the human figure on the medals of Melita and Camarina,^ as well as upon many ancient fculptures in relief found in Perfia;^ The feathers in thefe wings are turned up- wards like thofe of an oftrich,* to which however they have no refemblance in form, but feem rather like thofe of a fowl brooding, though more diftorted than any I ever obferved in nature. Whether this diftortion was meant to exprefs luft or incubation, I cannot determine ; but the compofitions, to which the wings are added, leave little doubt, that it was meant for the one or the other. I am inclined to believe that it was for the latter, as we find on the medals of Melita a figure with four of thefe wings, who feems by his attitude to be brooding over fomething.^ On his head is the cap of liberty, whilfl: in his right hand he holds the hook or attraftor, and in his left the winnow or feparator ; fo that he probably reprefents the E/3ft)9, or generative fpirit brooding over matter, and giving liberty to its produdive powers by the exertion of his own attri- butes, attradion and feparation. On a very ancient Phoenician medal brought from Afia by Mr. Pullinger, and publifhed very incorredly by Mr. Swinton in the Philofophical Tranfaftions of 1760, is a diic or ring furrounded by wings of different forms, of which fome of the feathers are diftorted in the fame manner.^ The fame difc, furrounded by the fame kind of wings, inclofes the afterifc of the fun over the bull Apis, or Mnevis, on the Ifiac Table,^ where it alfo appears with many of the other Egyptian

1 See Le Bruyn, Planche cxxiii. Ionia7i Antiquities, vol. i. c. 3. Plate ix., and Plate n. Fig. 2.

2 See Plate xx. Fig. 2, from one of Melita, belonging to me.

3 See Le Bruyn, Planche cxxi.

■* As thofe on Figures defcribed by Ezekiel were. See c. i. v. 11.

^ See Plate xx. Fig, 2, engraved from one belonging to me.

c See Plate ix. Fig. 9, engraved from the original medal, wovf belonging to me.

7 See Plate xix. Fig. i, from Pignorius.


fymbols, particularly over the heads oflfisand Ofiris.^ It is aifo placed over the entrances of moft of the Egyptian temples defcribed by Pococke and Norden as well as on that reprefented on the Ifiac Table,'^ though with feveral variations, and without the afterifc. We find it equally without the afterifc, but with little or no varia- tion, on the ruins at Chilmenar, and other fuppofed Perfian anti- quities in that neighbourhood:' but upon fome of the Greek medals the afterifc alone is placed over the bull with the human face,' who is then the fame as the Apis or Mnevis of the Egyptians ; that is, the image of the generative power of the fun, which is fig- nified by the afterifc on the Greek medals, and by the kneph, or winged difc, on the Oriental monuments. The Greeks however fometimes employed this latter fymbol, but contrived, according to their ufual pradice, to join it to the human figure, as may be feen on a medal of Camarina, publiftied by Prince Torremmuzzi. On other medals of this city the fame idea is exprefied, without the difc or afterifc, by a winged figure, which appears hovering over a fwan, the emblem of the waters, to ftiow the generative power of the fun fruftifying that element, or adding the active to t\\Q.paJfive powers of production/' On the medals of Naples, a winged figure of the fame kind is reprefented crowning the Taurine Bacchus with a wreath of laurelJ This antiquarians have called a Vidory crowning the Minotaur; but the fabulous monfter called the Mi- notaur was never faid to have been victorious, even by the poets

^ See Plate xviii. Fig. 2, from Pignorius.

2 See Plate xvui. Fig. i, from Pignorius.

3 See Niebuhr and Le Bruyn, and Plate xix. Fig. 2, from the former.

  • See Plate iv. Fig. 2, and Plate xix. Fig. 4, from a medal of Cales, belonging

to me.

  • See Plate xxi. Fig. 2, copied from it.

6 See Plate xxi. Fig. 3, from one belonging to me. ' See Plate xix. Fig. 5. The coins are common in all colledlions.



who invented it; and whenever the fculptors and painters repre- fented it, they joined the head of a bull to a human body, as may be feen in the celebrated pifture of Thefeus, publifhed among the antiquities of Herculaneum, and on the medals of Athens, ftruck about the time of Severus, when the ftyle of art was totally changed, and the myftic theology extind;. The winged figure, which has been called a Vidlory, appears mounting in the chariot of the fun, on the medals of queen Philiftis,^ and, on fome of thofe of Syra- cufe, flying before it in the place where the aflerifc appears on others of the fame city.^ I am therefore perfuaded, that thefe are only different modes of reprefenting one idea, and that the winged figure means the fame, when placed over the Taurine Bacchus of the Greeks,as the winged difcdoes over the Apis orMnevis of the Egyp- tians. The i^^gis, or fnaky breaftplate, and the Medufa's head, are alfo, as Dr. Stukeley juftly obferved,^ Greek modes of repre- fenting this winged difc joined with the ferpents, as it frequently is, both in the Egyptian fculptures, and thofe of Chilmenar in Perfia. The expreffions of rage and violence, which ufually charad:erife the countenance of Medufa,fignify the defliroying attribute joined with the generative, as both were equally under the direction of Minerva, or divine wifdom. I am inclined to believe, that the large rings, to which the little figures of Priapus are attached,* had alfo the fame meaning as the difc; for, if intended merely to fufpend them by, they are of an extravagant magnitude, and would not anfwer their purpofe fo well as a common loop.

On the Phoenician coin above mentioned, this fymbol, the winged difc, is placed over a figure fitting, who holds in his hands an arrow, whilft a bow, ready bent, of the ancient Scythian form.

1 See PlateSxxi. Fig. 4, from one belonging to me.

2 See Plate xxi. Fig. 5 and 6, from coins belonging to me.

3 Abury, p. 93. z* See Plate 11. Fig. i, and Plate in. Fig. 2.


lies by him.^ On his head is a large loofe cap, tied under his chin, which I take to be the lion's fkin, worn in the fame manner as on the heads of Hercules, upon the medals of Alexander; but the work is fo fmall, though executed with extreme nicety and precifion, and perfectly preferved, that it is difficult to decide with certainty what it reprefents, in parts of fuch minutenefs. The bow and arrows, we know, were the ancient arms of Hercules;'^ and con- tinued fo, until the Greek poets thought proper to give him the club.^ He was particularly worfhipped at Tyre, the metropolis of Phoenicia ;"* and his head appears in the ufual form, on many of the coins of that people. We may hence conclude that he is the perfon here reprefented, notwithftanding the difference in the ftyle and compofition of the figure, which may be accounted for by the difference of art. The Greeks, animated by the fpirit of their ancient poets, and the glowing melody of their language, were grand and poetical in all their compofitions ; whilft the Phoenicians, who fpoke a harfh and untuneable dialed, were unacquainted with fine poetry, and confequently with poetical ideas ; for words being the types of ideas, and the figns or marks by which men not only communicate them to each other, but arrange and regulate them in their own minds, the genius of a language goes a great way towards forming the charader of the people who ufe it. Poverty of ex- preffion will produce poverty of conception ; for men will never be able to form fublime ideas, when the language in which they think (for men always think as well as fpeak in fome language) is inca- pable of expreffing them. This may be one reafon why the Phoe- nicians never rivalled the Greeks in the perfedion of art, althoucrh they attained a degree of excellence long before them ; for Homer, whenever he has occafion to fpeak of any fine piece of art, takes

^ See Plate ix. Fig. \o b. 2 Homer's OJyJf. A, ver. 606.

3 Strabo, lib. xiv. ■* Macrob, Sat. lib. i. c. 20.


care to inform us that it was the work of Sidonians. He alfo mentions the Phoenician merchants bringing toys and ornaments of drefs to fell to the Greeks, and pradifing thofe frauds which merchants and fadors are apt to pradife upon ignorant people.^ It is probable that their progrefs in the fine arts, like that of the Dutch (who are the Phoenicians of modern hiftory), never went beyond a ftrid imitation of nature; which, compared to the more elevated graces of ideal compofition, is like a newfpaper narrative compared with one of Homer's battles. A figure of Hercules, therefore, executed by a Phoenician artift, if compared to one by Phidias or Lyfippus, would be like a picture of Mofes or David, painted by Teniers, or Gerard Dow, compared to one of the fame, painted by Raphael or Annibal Caracci. This is exadly the differ- ence between the figures on the medal now under confideration,and thofe on the coins of Gelo or Alexander. Of all the perfonages of the ancient mythology, Hercules is perhaps the mofl difficult to explain; for phyfical allegory and fabulous hiflory are fo entangled in the accounts we have of him, that it is fcarcely poffible to fepa- rate them. He appears however, like all the other gods, to have been originally a perfonified attribute of the fun. The eleventh of the Orphic Hymns^ is addreffed to him as the flrength and power of the fun; and Macrobius fays that he was thought to be the flrength and virtue of the gods, by which they deflroyed the giants; and that, according to Varro, the Mars and Hercules of the Romans were the fame deity, and worfhipped with the fame rites.^ According to Varro then, whofe authority is perhaps the greateft that can be cited, Hercules was the deflroying attribute reprefented in a human form, inftead of that of a lion, tiger, or hippopotamus. Hence the terrible pidure drawn of him by Homer, which always appeared to me to have been taken from

1 Homer. Odyjf. o, ver. 414. ^ Ed. Gefner. ^ ^^t. lib. i. c. 20.



fome fymbolical ftatue, which the poet not underftanding, fuppofed to be of the Theban hero, who had aflumed the title of the deity, and whofe fabulous hiftory he was well acquainted with. The defcription however applies in every particular to the allegorical perfonage. His attitude, for ever fixed in the acft of letting fly his arrow,^ with the figures of lions and bears, battles and murders, which adorn his belt, all unite in reprefenting him as the deftru6live attribute perfonified. But how happens it then that he is fo fre- quently reprefented ftrangling the lion, the natural emblem of this power ? Is this an hiftorical fable belonging to the Theban hero, or a phyfical allegory of the deftrudive power defl:roying its own force by its own exertions ? Or is the fingle attribute perfonified taken for the whole power of the deity in this, as in other infl:ances already mentioned? The Orphic Hymn above cited feems to favour this laft conjedure ; for he is there addreffed both as the devourer and generator of all (na/A^a7e, 770776^6x0)^). However this may be, we may fafely conclude that the Hercules armed with the bow and arrow, as he appears on the prefent medal, is like the Apollo, the deftroying power of the diurnal fun.

On the other fide of the medaP is a figure, fomewhat like the Jupiter on the medals of Alexander and Antiochus, fitting with a beaded fceptre in his right hand, which he refi;s upon the head of a bull, that projeds from the fide of the chair. Above, on his right fiioulder, is a bird, probably a dove, the fymbol of the Holy Spirit, defcending from the fun, but, as this part of the medal is lefs perfed than the reft:, the fpecies cannot be clearly difcovered. In his left hand he holds a ftiort fl:afF, from the upper fide of which fprings an ear of corn, and from the lower a bunch of grapes, which being the two moft eflieemed produdions of the earth, were the natural emblems of general fertilization. This figure is there-

' Atct BaXeoi/Tt eoiKa><i. Od^jjf. \, vcr. 607. See Plate ix. Fig. 10 a.


fore the generator, as that on the other fide is the deftroyer, whilft the fun, of whofe attributes both are perfonifications, is placed be- tween them. The letters on the fide of the generator are quite entire, and, according to the Phoenician, alphabet publifhed by Mr. Dutens, are equivalent to the Roman ones which compofe the words Baal "Thrz^ of which Mr. Swinton makes Baal 'Tarz^ and tra.n{[a.tQS Jupifer of Tar/us ; whence he concludes that this coin was ftruck at that city. But the firft letter of the laft word is not a "Teth, but a l^hau, or afpirated T; and, as the Phoenicians had a vowel anfwering to the Roman A, it is probable they would have inferted it, had they intended it to be founded : but we have no reafon to believe that they had any to exprefs the U or Y, which muft therefore be comprehended in the preceding confonant when- ever the found is expreffed. Hence I conclude that the word here meant is Thyrz or T/iurz, the Thor or T/iur of the Celtes and Sarmatians, the Thurra of the AfTyrians, the 'Turan of the Tyr- rhenians or Etrufcans, the 'Taurine Bacchus of the Greeks, and the deity whom the Germans carried with them in the fhape of a bull, when they invaded Italy ; from whom the city of Tyre, as well as Tyrrhenia, or Tufcany, probably took its name. His fymbol the bull, to which the name alludes, is reprefented on the chair or throne in which he fits ; and his fceptre, the emblem of his autho- rity, refts upon it. The other word, Baal, was merely a title in the Phoenician language, fignifying God, or Lord ;^ and u fed as an epithet of the fun, as we learn from the name Baal-bec [the city of Baal), which the Greeks rendered Heliopolis ( the city of the fun). Thus does this fingular medal fhow the fundamental principles of the ancient Phoenician religion to be the fame as thofe which appear to have prevailed through all the other nations of the northern hemifphere. Fragments of the fame fyftem every where

  • Cleric. Comm. in z Reg. c. i. ver. 2.



occur, varioufly exprefled as they were varioufly underftood, and oftentimes merely preferved without being underftood at all; the ancient reverence being continued to the fymbols, when their meaning was wholly forgotten. The hypojlatical divifion and e[Jential unity of the deity is one of the moft remarkable parts of this fyftem, and the fartheft removed from common fenfeand reafon ; and yet this is perfectly reafonable and confiftent, if confidered together with the reft of it : for the emanations and perfonifications were only figurative abftradtions of particular modes of ad:ion and exiftence, of which the primary caufe and original eflence ftill con- tinued one and the fame.

The three hypoftafes being thus only one being, each hypoftafis is occafionally taken for all ; as is the cafe in the paffage of Apuleius before cited, where Ifis defcribes herfelf as the univerfal deity. In this character ftie is reprefented by a fmall bafaltine figure, of Egyptian fculpture, at Strawberry Hill, which is covered over with fymbols of various kinds from top to bottom.^ That of the bull is placed loweft, to fhow that the ftrength or power of the creator is the foundation and fupport of every other attribute. On her head are towers, to denote the earth; and round her neck is hung a crab-fifti, which, from its power of fpontaneoufly de- taching from its body, and naturally reproducing, any limbs that are hurt or mutilated, became the fymbol of the produdive power of the waters ; in which fenfe it appears on great numbers of ancient medals of various cities.^ The nutritive power is fignified

' A print of one exaftly the fame is publiftied by Montfaucon, Antiq. exfliq. vol. i. Plate xciii. Fig. i.

- See thofe of Agrigentum, Himera, and Cyrene. On a fmall one of the firft- mentioned city, belonging to me, a crofs, the abbreviated fymbol of the male powers of generation, approaches the mouth of the crab, while the cornucopia iflues from it (lee Plate xx. Fig. 3): the one reprefents the caufe, and the other the effeft, of fertilization.


by her many breafts, and the deftruftive by the lions which fhe bears on her arms. Other attributes are expreffed by various other animal fymbols, the precife meaning of which I have not fagacity fufficient to difcover.

This univerfality of the goddefs was more concifely reprefented in other figures of her, by the myftic inftrument called a Syjlrum, which fhe carried in her hand. Plutarch has given an explanation of it,^ which may ferve to fhow that the mode here adopted of explaining the ancient fymbols is not founded merely upon con- jefture and analogy, but alfo upon the authority of one of the moft grave and learned of the Greeks. The curved top, he fays, repre- fented the lunar orbit, within which the creative attributes of the deity were exerted, in giving motion to the four elements, fignified by the four rattles below.^ On the centre of the curve was a cat, the emblem of the moon; who, from her influence on the con- ftitutions of women, was fuppofed to prefide particularly over the paffive powers of generation;^ and below, upon the bafe, a head of Ifis or Nepthus; inftead of which, upon that which I have had engraved, as well as upon many others now extant, are the male organs of generation, reprefenting the adive powers of the creator, attributed to Ifis with the paffive. The clattering noife, and various motions of the rattles being adopted as the fymbols of the movement and mixture of the elements from which all things are produced; the found of metals in general became an emblem of the fame kind. Hence, the ringing of bells, and clattering of plates of metal, were ufed in all lufl;rations, facrifices, &c.* The title Priapus, applied to the charac^erifliic attribute of the creator.

1 De Is. tsf Os.

2 See Plate x. Fig. 4, engraved from one in the colledlion of R. Wilbraham, Efq.

3 Cic. de Nat. Deor. lib. ii. c. 46.

4 Clem. Alex. II/oot^. p. 9. Schol. in Theocrit. Idyll. 11. ver. 36.


and fometimes to the Creator himfelf, is probably a corruption of BptaTTuo? (clamorous or loud); for the B and IT being both labials, the change of the one for the other is common in the Greek language. We ftill find many ancient images of this fymbol, with bells attached to them/ as they were to the facred robe of the high prieft of the Jews, in which he adminiftered to the Creator.^ The bells in both were of a pyramidal form,' to fhew the aetherial igneous eflence of the god. This form is ftill retained in thofe ufed in our churches, as well as in the little ones rung by the Catholic priefts at the elevation of the hoft. The ufe of them was early adopted by the Chriftians, in the fame fenfe as they were employed by the later heathens; that is, as a charm againft evil daemons;'* for, being fymbols of the aAive exertions of the creative attributes, they were properly oppofed to the emanations of the deftrudive. The Lacedemonians ufed to beat a pan or kettle- drum at the death of their king, to affift in the emancipation of his foul at the diftblution of the body. We have a fimilar cuftom of tolling a bell on fuch occafions, which is very generally prac- tifed, though the meaning of it has been long forgotten. This emancipation of the foul was fuppofed to be finally performed by fire; which, being the vifible image and adive eflence of both the creative and deftrudlive powers, was very naturally thought to be the medium through which men paffed from the prefent to a future life. The Greeks, and all the Celtic nations, accordingly, burned the bodies of the dead, as the Gentoos do at this day; while the Egyptians, among whom fuel was extremely fcarce,

1 Bronzi delP Hercol. Tom. vi. Plate xcviii. ' Exod. ch. xxviii.

3 Bronzi deir Hercol. Tom. vi. Plate xcvni. Maimonidcs in Patrick's Com- mentary on ExoduSy ch. xxviii.

^ Ovid. Faji. lib. v. ver. 441. Schol. in Theocrit. Idyll, ii. ver. 36. 5 Schol. in Theocrit. Idyll, ii. ver. 36.



placed them in pyramidal monuments, which were the fymbols of fire ; hence come thofe prodigious ftrudures which ftill adorn that country. The foul which was to be emancipated was the divine emanation, the vital fpark of heavenly flame, the principle of reafon and perception, which was perfonified into the familiar daemon, or genius, fuppofed to have the direction of each individual, and to difpofe him to good or evil, wifdom or folly, and all their con- fequences of profperity and adverfity/ Hence proceeded the doftrines, fo uniformly inculcated by Homer and Pindar,^ of all human adions depending immediately upon the gods ; which were adopted, with fcarcely any variations, by fome of the Chriftian divines of the apoftolic age. In the Pafl:or of Hermas, and Recognitions of Clemens, we find the angels of juftice, penitence, and forrow, infliead of the genii, or daemons, which the ancients fuppofed to direct men's minds and infpire them with thofe parti- cular fentiments. St. Paul adopted the flill more comfortable do6lrine of grace, which ferved full as well to emancipate the confciences of the faithful from the fhackles of practical morality. The familiar daemons, or divine emanations, were fuppofed to refide in the blood ; which was thought to contain the principles of vital heat, and was therefore forbidden by Mofes.^ Homer, who feems to have coUefted little fragments of the ancient theology, and introduced them here and there, amidft the wild profufion of his poetical fables, reprefents the fhades of the deceafed as void of perception, until they had tafled of the blood of the vidims offered

' Pindar. Pyth. v. ver. 164. Sophocl. Trachin, ver. 922. Hor. lib. ii. epift. ii. ver. 187.

^ E/c Seoiv fMa'x,avaL irdcraL ^poreai'i apeTai<;, kul (TO(f>oi. Kai %epcri yStarat, TrepiyXcoaaoi r' £cf)VP. Pindar. Pytb. i. ver. 79. Paffages to the fame purpofe occur in almoil every page of the Iliad 2.nd OdyJJey.

Levit. ch. xvii. ver. 11 & 14.


by Ulyfles ;' by which their faculties were renewed by a reunion with the divine emanation, from which they had been feparatcd. The foul of Tirefias is faid to be entire in hell, and to poflefs alone the power of perception, becaufe with him this divine emanation ftill remained. The fhade of Hercules is defcribed among the other ghofts, though he himfelf, as the poet fays, was then in heaven ; that is, the adive principle of thought and perception returned to its native heaven, whilft the paffive, or merely fenfitive, remained on earth, from whence it fprung.'- The final feparation of thefe two did not take place till the body was confumed by fire, as appears from the ghoft of Elpenor, whofe body being ftill entire, he retained both, and knew Ulyfles before he had tafted of the blood. It was from producing this feparation, that the univerfal Bacchus, or double Apollo, the creator and deftroyer, whofe eflence was fire, was alfo called At/cwr?;?, the purifier,-' by a metaphor taken from the winnow, which purified the corn from the duft and chaff, as fire purified the foul from its terreftrial pollutions. Hence this inftrument is called by Virgil the myftic winnow of Bacchus.* The Ammonian Platonics and Gnoftic Chriftians thought that this feparation, or purification, might be effefted in a degree even before death. It was for this purpofe that they pradifed fuch rigid temperance, and gave themfelves up to fuch intenfe ftudy ; for, by fubduing and extenuating the terreftrial principle, they hoped to give liberty and vigour to the celeftial, fo that it might beenabled to afcend diredly to the intelleftual world,pure andunincumbered.

' OdyJJ'. \, ver. 152.

' Thofe who wifh to lee the difference between fenfation and perception clearly and fully explained, may be fatisfied by reading the EJ/ai aualytique fur P Ame, by Mr. Bonnet.

Orph. Hymn. 45. ■" Myjlica vannus lacchi. Georg. i. ver. 166.

' Plotin. Ennead. vi. lib. iv. ch. 16. Moflieim, Not. y in Cudw. Syjl. Inteli ch. V. fedt. 20.


The clergy afterwards introduced Purgatory, inftead of abftrad meditation and ftudy ; which was the ancient mode of feparation by fire, removed into an unknown country, where it was faleable to all fuch of the inhabitants of this world as had fufficient wealth and credulity.

It was the celeftial or setherial principle of the human mind, which the ancient artifts reprefented under the fymbol of the butterfly, which may be confidered as one of the moft elegant alle- gories of their elegant religion. This infedl, when hatched from the egg, appears in the fhape of a grub, crawling upon the earth, and feeding upon the leaves of plants. In this fliate, it was aptly made the emblem of man, in his earthly form, in which the aetherial vigour and adivity of the celeflial foul, the divine particula mentis, was fuppofed to be clogged and incumbered with the material body. When the grub was changed to a chryfalis, its ftillnefs, torpor, and infenfibility feemed to prefent a natural image of death, or the inter- mediate fliate between the cefl^ation of the vital fundions of the body and the final releafement of the foul by the fire, in which the body was confumed. The butterfly breaking from the torpid chryfalis, and mounting in the air, was no lefs natural an image of the celeftial foul burfting from the reftraints of matter, and mixing again with its native aether. The Greek artifts, always ftudious of elegance, changed this, as well as other animal fymbols, into a human form, retaining the wings as the charaderiftic members, by which the meaning might be known. The human body, which they added to them, is that of a beautiful girl, fometimes in the age of infancy, and fometimes of approaching maturity. So beautiful an allegory as this would naturally be a favourite fubjed of art among a people whofe tafte had attained the utmoft pitch of refine- ment. We accordingly find that it has been more frequently and more varioufly repeated than any other which the fyftem of emana- tions, fo favourable to art, could afford.


Although all men were fuppofed to partake of the divine emanation in a degree, it was not fuppofed that they all partook of it in an equal degree. Thofe who (howed fuperior abilities, and diftinguifhed themfelves by their fplendid actions, were fuppofed to have a larger fhare of the divine eflence, and were therefore adored as gods, and honoured with divine titles, expreifive of that parti- cular attribute of the deity with which they feemed to be moft favoured. New perfonages were thus enrolled among the alle- gorical deities; and the perfonified attributes of the fun were con- founded with a Cretan and TheiTalian king, an Afiatic conqueror, and a Theban robber. Hence Pindar, who appears to have been a very orthodox heathen, fays, that the race of men and gods is one, that both breathe from one mother, and only differ in power.^ This confufion of epithets and titles contributed, as much as any thing, to raife that vaft and extravagant fabric of poetical mytho- logy, which, in a manner, overwhelmed the ancient theology, which was too pure and philofophical to continue long a popular religion. The grand and exalted fyftem of a general firft caufe, univerfally expanded, did not fuit the grofs conceptions of the multitude; who had no other way of conceiving the idea of an omnipotent god, but by forming an exaggerated image of their own defpot, and fuppofing his power to confift in an unlimited gratification of his paffions and appetites. Hence the univerfal Jupiter, the aweful and venerable, the general principle of life and motion, was transformed into the god who thundered from Mount Ida, and was lulled to fleep in the embraces of his wife; and hence the god whofe fpirit moved" upon the face of the waters,

1 Nem. V. ver. i .

^ So the tranflators have rendered the expreflion of the original, which literally means brooding as a fowl on its eggs, and alludes to the fymbols of the ancient theology, which I have before obferved upon. See Patrick's Commentary..


and impregnated them with the powers of generation, became a great king above all gods, who led forth his people to fmite the ungodly, and rooted out their enemies from before them.

Another great means of corrupting the ancient theology, and eftablifhing the poetical mythology, was the pradtice of the artifts in reprefenting the various attributes of the creator under human forms of various character and expreffion. Thefe figures, being diftinguifhed by the titles of the deity which they were meant to reprefent, became in time to be confidered as diftind perfonages, and worfhipped as feparate fubordinate deities. Hence the many- fhaped god, the ttoXu/ao/j^o? and fivpio/xop(f)0'; of the ancient theo- logifts, became divided into many gods and goddeffes, often de- fcribed by the poets as at variance with each other, and wrangling about the little intrigues and paffions of men. Hence too, as the fymbols were multiplied, particular ones loft their dignity ; and that venerable one which is the fubjed; of this difcourfe, became degraded from the reprefentative of the god of nature to a fubordinate rural deity, a fuppofed fon of the Afiatic conqueror Bacchus, ftanding among the nymphs by a fountain,^ and exprefting the fertility ot a garden, inftead of the general creative power of the great adlive principle of the univerfe. His degradation did not ftop even here ; for we find him, in times ftill more prophane and corrupt, made a fubjed of raillery and infult, as anfwering no better purpofe than holding up his rubicund fnout to frighten the birds and thieves.^ H is talents were alfo perverted from their natural ends, and employed in bafeand abortive efforts in conformity to the tafte of the times; for men naturally attribute their own paffions and inclinations to the objeds of their adoration; and as God made man in his own image, fo man returns the favour, and makes God in his. Hence we find the higheft attribute of the all-pervading fpirit and firft-

' Theocrit. Idyll, i. ver. 21. ^ Horat. lib. i. Sat. viii. Virg. Georg. iv.


begotten love foully proftituted to promifcuous vice, and calling out, H^c cunnum^ caput hie, pr^beat ille nates?

He continued however ftill to have his temple, prieftefs and facred geefe,'"^ and offerings of the moft exquifite kind were made to him :

Criflabitque tibi excuflis. pulcherrima lumbis Hoc anno primum cxperta puella virum.

Sometimes, however, they were not fo fcrupulous in the feledlion of their vidims, but fuffered frugality to reftrain their devotion :

Cum iacrum fieret Deo falaci Condufta ell pretio puella parvo/

The bride was ufually placed upon him immediately before mar- riage ; not, as Lacflantius fays, ut ejus pudicitiam prior Deus pra- libajfe videatur^ but that fhe might be rendered fruitful by her communion with the divine nature, and capable of fulfilling the duties of her ftation. In an ancient poem* we find a lady of the name of Lalageprefentingthe pictures of the " Elephantis" to him, and gravely requefting that fhe might enjoy the pleafures over which he particularly prefided, in all the attitudes defcribed in that celebrated treatife. Whether or not fhe fucceeded, the poet has not informed us ; but we may fafely conclude that fhe did not truft wholly to faith and prayer, but, contrary to the ufual practice of modern devotees, accompanied her devotion with fuch good works as were likely to contribute to the end propofed by it.

When a lady had ferved as the vi(!l:im in a facrifice to this god, fhe expreffed her gratitude for the benefits received, by offering upon his altar certain fmall images reprefenting his charaderiflic

' Priap. Carm. 21. * Petron. Satyric.

' Priap. Carm. 34. * Priap. Carm. 3.

' The Elephantis was written by one Philcenis, and feems to have been o^ the fame kind with the Puttana errante of Aretin.


attribute, the number of which was equal to the number of men who had aded as priefts upon the occafion/ On an antique gem, in the colleftion of Mr. Townley, is one of thefe fair viftims, who appears juft returned from a facrifice of this kind, and devoutly- returning her thanks by offering upon an altar fome of thefe images, from the number of which one may obferve that fhe has not been neglefted.'^ This offering of thanks had alfo its myftic and allegorical meaning ; for fire being the energetic principle and effential force of the Creator, and the fymbol above mentioned the vifible image of his charadleriftic attribute, the uniting them was uniting the material with the effential caufe, from whofe joint operation all things were fuppofed to proceed.

Thefe facrifices, as well as all thofe to the deities prefiding over generation, were performed by night: hence Hippolytus, in Euri- pides, fays, to exprefs his love of chaftity, that he likes none of the gods revered by night.^ Thefe adis of devotion were indeed attended with fuch rites as muft naturally fhock the prejudices of a chafte and temperate mind, not liable to be warmed by that ecftatic enthufiafm which is peculiar to devout perfons when their attention is abforbed in the contemplation of the beneficent powers of the Creator, and all their faculties direded to imitate him in the exertion of his great charafteriftic attribute. To heighten this enthufiafm, the male and female faints of antiquity ufed to lie pro- mifcuoufly together in the temples, and honour God by a liberal difplay and general communication of his bounties.^ Herodotus, indeed, excepts the Greeks and Egyptians, and Dionyfius of Hali- carnaffus, the Romans, from this general cuftom of other nations ; but to the teftimony of the former we may opp.ofe the thoufand facred proftitutes kept at each of the temples of Corinth and

1 Priap. Carm. 34. Ed. Scioppii. ^ See Plate iii. Fig. 3.

3 Ver. 613. ^ Herodot. lib. ii.



Eryx;^ and to that of the latter the exprefs words of Juvenal, who, though he lived an age later, lived when the fame religion, and nearly the fame manners, prevailed.^ Diodorus Siculus alfo tells us, that when the Roman praetors vifited Eryx, they laid afide their magifterial feverity, and honoured the goddefs by mix- ing with her votaries, and indulging themfelves in the pleafures over which fhe prefided.^ It appears, too, that the ad of genera- tion was a fort of facrament in the ifland of Lefbos; for the device on its medals (which in the Greek republics had always fome relation to religion) is as explicit as forms can make it/ The figures appear indeed to be myftic and allegorical, the male having evidently a mixture of the goat in his beard and features, and there- fore probably reprefents Pan, the generative power of the univerfe, incorporated in univerfal matter. The female has all that breadth and fulnefs which charaderife the perfonification of the paflive power, known by the titles of Rhea, Juno, Ceres, &c.

When there were fuch feminaries for female education as thofe of Eryx and Corinth, we need not wonder that the ladies of anti- quity fhould be extremely well inftru6ted in all the practical duties of their religion. The ftories told of Julia and Meflalina fhow us that the Roman ladies were no ways deficient; and yet they were as remarkable for their gravity and decency as the Corinthians were for their fkill and dexterity in adapting themfelves to all the modes and attitudes which the luxuriant imaginations of expe- rienced votaries have contrived for performing the rites of their tutelar goddefs.^

The reafon why thefe rites were always performed by night, was the peculiar fandtity attributed to it by the ancients, becaufe dreams were then fuppofed to defcend from heaven to infl:ru(5l and

1 Strab. lib. viii. 2 Sat. ix. ver. 24. 3 Lib. iv. Eii. Wejfel.

4 See Plate ix. Fig. 8, from one belonging to me.

5 Philodemi Epigr. Brunk. Anale8. vol. ii. p. 8$.


forewarn men. The nights, fays Hefiod, belong to the blefled gods;^ and the Orphic poet calls night the fource of all things {yravToiv r^eveai<;) to denote that produdive power, which, as I have been told, it really pofleffes; it being obferved that plants and animals grow more by night than by day. The ancients extended this power much further, and fuppofed that not only the pro- ductions of the earth, but the luminaries of heaven, were nourifhed and fuftained by the benign influence of the night. Hence that beautiful apofl:rophe in the "Eledra" of Euripides, O w^ fieXaiva, Xpvaecov acrrpcov rpo^e^ &c.

Not only the facrifices to the generative deities, but in general all the religious rites of the Greeks, were of the feftive kind. To imitate the gods, was, in their opinion, to feafl: and rejoice, and to cultivate the ufeful and elegant arts, by which we are m ade par- takers of their felicity.^ This was the cafe with almofl: all the nations of antiquity, except the^ Egyptians and their reformed imitators the Jews,* who being governed by a hierarchy, endea- voured to make it awful and venerable to the people by an appear- ance of rigour and aufl:erity. The people however, fometimes broke through this refliraint, and indulged themfelves in the more pleafing worfliip of their neighbours, as when they danced and feafl:ed before the golden calf which Aaron ereded,^ and devoted themfelves to the worfhip of obfcene idols, generally fuppofed to be of Priapus, under the reign of Abijam.

The Chrifliian religion, being a reformation of the Jewifli, rather increafed than diminiflied the auflierity of its original. On particular occafions however it equally abated its rigour, and gave way to feftivity and mirth, though always with an air of fandlity and

1 E/37. ver. 730. 2 Strabo, lib. x. ^ Herodot, lib. ii.

4 See Spencer de Leg. Rit. Vet. Hebraor. ^ Exod. ch. xxxii.

6 ^1?^. c. XV. ver. 13. Ed. Cleric.


folemnity. Such were originally the feafts of the Eucharift, which, as the word exprefles, were meetings of joy and gratulation ; though, as divines tell us, all of the fpiritual kind : but the parti- cular manner in which St. Auguftine commands the ladies who attended them to wear clean linen,^ feems to infer, that perfonal as well as fpiritual matters were thought worthy of attention. To thofe who adminifler the facrament in the modern way, it may appear of little confequence whether the women received it in clean linen or not ; but to the good bifhop, who was to adminifler the holy ki/s, it certainly was of fome importance. The holy kifs was not only applied as a part of the ceremonial of the Eucharift, but alfo of prayer, at the conclufion of which they welcomed each other with this natural fign of love and benevolence.'^ It was upon thefe occafions that they worked themfelves up to thofe fits of rapture and enthufiafm, which made them eagerly rufh upon deftrudtion in the fury of their zeal to obtain the crown of martyrdom.^ En- thufiafm on one fubjedl naturally produces enthufiafm on another ; for the human paffions, like the ftrings of an inftrument, vibrate to the motions of each other : hence paroxyfms of love and devotion have oftentimes fo exadlyaccorded,asnottohavebeendiftinguifhed by the very perfons whom they agitated.* This was too often the cafe in thefe meetings of the primitive Chriftians. The feafts of gratulation and love, the a^airat and nofturnal vigils, gave too flattering opportunities to the paffions and appetites of men, to continue long, what we are told they were at firft, pure exercifes of devotion. The fpiritual raptures and divine ecftafies encouraged on thefe occafions, were often ecftafies of a very different kind, con- cealed under the garb of devotion ; whence the greateft irregularities enfued; and it became necefTary for the reputation of the church,

1 Aug. Serm. clii. 2 Juftin Martyr. Apolog.

3 Martini Kempii de Ofculis DiJ/ert. viii. ■* See Proces de la Cadi'cre.


that they fhould be fupprefled, as they afterwards were by the decrees of feveral councils. Their fuppreffion may be confidered as the final fubverfion of that part of the ancient religion which I have here undertaken to examine ; for fo long as thofe nodurnal meetings were preferved, it certainly exifted, though under other names, and in a more folemn drefs. The fmall remain of it preferved at Ifernia, of which an account has here been given, can fcarcely be deemed an exception ; for its meaning was unknown to thofe who celebrated it ; and the obfcurity of the place, added to the vener- able names of S. Cofimo and Damiano, was all that prevented it from being fupprefled long ago, as it has been lately, to the great difmay of the chafte matrons and pious monks of Ifernia. Traces and memorials of it feem however to have been preferved, in many parts of Chrifl:endom, long after the aftual celebration of its rites ceafed. Hence the obfcene figures obfervable upon many of our Gothic Cathedrals, and particularly upon the ancient brafs doors of St. Peter's at Rome, where there are fome groups which rival the devices on the Lefbian medals.

It is curious, in looking back through the annals of fuperftition, fo degrading to the pride of man, to trace the progrefs of the human mind in different ages, climates, and circumflances, uni- formly afting upon the fame principles, and to the fame ends. The fketch here given of the corruptions of the religion of Greece, is an exaft counterpart of the hiflory of the corruptions of Chriflianity, which began in the pure theifm of the ecleftic Jews,^ and by the help of infpirations, emanations, and canonizations, expanded itfelf, by degrees, to the vafl and unwieldy fyftem which now fills the creed of what is commonly called the Catholic Church. In the ancient religion, however, the emanations afTumed the appearance of moral

1 Compare the doftrines of Philo with thofe taught in the Gofpel of St, John, and Epiftles of St. Paul.


virtues and phyfical attributes, inftead of miniftering fpirits and guardian angels; and the canonizations or deifications were beftowed upon heroes, legiflators, and monarchs, inftead of priefts, monks, and martyrs. There is alfo this further difference, that among the moderns philofophy has improved, as religion has been corrupted ; whereas, among the ancients, religion and philofophy declined to- gether. The true folar fyftem was taught in the Orphic fchool, and adopted by the Pythagoreans, the next regularly-eftablifhed fed. The Stoics corrupted it a little, by placing the earth in the centre of the univerfe, though they ftill allowed the fun its fuperior mag- nitude.^ At length arofe the Epicureans, who confounded it entirely, maintaining that the fun was only a fmall globe of fire, a few inches in diameter, and the ftars little tranfitory lights, whirled about in the atmofphere of the earth.^

How ill foever adapted the ancient fyftem of emanations was to procure eternal happinefs, it was certainly extremely well calcu- lated to produce temporal good ; for, by the endlefs multiplication of fubordinate deities, it effedually excluded two of the greateft curfes that ever afflidled the human race, dogmatical theology, and its confequent religious perfecution. Far from fuppofing that the gods known in their own country were the only ones exifting, the Greeks thought that innumerable emanations of the divine mind were diffufed through every part of the univerfe ; fo that new objects of devotion prefented themfelves wherever they went. Every mountain, fpring, and river, had its tutelary deity, befides the numbers of immortal fpirits that were fuppofed to wander in the air, fcattering dreams and vifions, and fuperintending the affairs of men.

1 Brucker, ////?. Crit. Philof. p. ii. lib. ii. c. 9. f. i.

2 Lucret. lib. v. ver. 565, & feq.


T/3t9 ya^ fivptoL eLcriv eiri ')(6ovi, Trovku^oreLp-q AdavaTOL Z-qvof, (f)v\aK€'i OvrjTWV avd pwirwv .'^

An adequate knowledge of thefe they never prefumed to think attainable, but modeftly contented themfelves with revering and invoking them whenever they felt or wanted their affiftance. When a ihipwrecked mariner was caft upon an unknown coaft, he immediately offered up his prayers to the gods of the country, whoever they were; and joined the inhabitants in whatever rites they thought proper to propitiate them with.'^ Impious or pro- phane rites he never imagined could exift, concluding that all expreffions of gratitude and fubmiffion mufl be pleafing to the gods. Atheifm was, indeed, punifhed at Athens, as the obfcene ceremonies of the Bacchanalians were at Rome ; but both as civil crimes againft the ftate ; the one tending to weaken the bands of fociety by deftroying the fancftity of oaths, and the other to fubvert that decency and gravity of manners, upon which the Romans fo much prided themfelves. The introdudion of ftrange gods, with- out permiffion from the magiftrate, was alfo prohibited in both cities ; but the reftridion extended no farther than the walls, there being no other parts of the Roman empire, except Judea, in which any kind of impiety or extravagance might not have been main- tained with impunity, provided it was maintained merely as a fpecu- lative opinion, and not employed as an engine of fadion, ambition, or oppreffion. The Romans even carried their condefcenfion fo far as to enforce the obfervance of a dogmatical religion, where they found it before eftablifhed ; as appears from the condud; of their magiftrates in Judea, relative to Chrift and his apoftles ; and

iHefiod. EpyaKUi ^Hfiep. ver.z52, fxvptoi^SiC, are always ufed as indefinites by the ancient Greek poets.

2 See Homer. OJyJ/] e, ver. 445, & feq. The Greeks feem to have adopted by degrees into their own ritual all the rites praftifed in the neighbouring countries.


fromwhat Jofephus has related, of a Roman foldier's being punifhed with death by his commander for infulting the Books of Mofes. Upon what principle then did they ad, when they afterwards per- fecuted the Chriftians with fo much rancour and cruelty? Perhaps it may furprife perfons not ufed to the ftudy of ecclefiaftical antiquities, to be told (what is neverthelefs indifputably true) that the Chriftians were never perfecuted on account of the fpeculative opinions of individuals, but either for civil crimes laid to their charge, or for withdrawing their allegiance from the ftate, and joining in a federative union dangerous by its conftitution, and rendered ftill more dangerous by the intolerant principles of its members, who often tumultuoufly interrupted the public worftiip, and continually railed againft the national religion (with which both the civil government and military difcipline of the Romans were infeparably conneded), as the certain means of eternal damna- tion. To break this union, was the great objed of Roman policy during a long courfe of years; but the violent means employed only tended to cement it clofer. Some of the Chriftians themfelves indeed, who were addided to Platonifm, took a fafer method to diflblve it ; but they were too few in number to fucceed. This was by trying to moderate the furious zeal which gave life and vigour to the confederacy, and to blend and foften the unyielding temper of religion with the mild fpirit of philofophy. "We all," faid they, "agree in worftiipping one fupreme God, the Father and Preferver of all. While we approach him with purity of mind, fmcerity of heart, and innocence of manners, forms and ceremonies of worftiip are indifferent; and not lefs worthy of his greatnefs, for being varied and diverfified according to the various cuftoms and opinions of men. Had it been his will that all ftiould have worftiipped him in the fame mode, he would have given to all the fame inclinations and conceptions: but he has wifely ordered it otherwife, that piety and virtue might increafe by an honeft


emulation of religions, as induftry in trade, or adivity in a race, from the mutual emulation of the candidates for wealth and honour,"^ This was too liberal and extenfive a plan, to meet the approbation of a greedy and ambitious clergy, whofe objeft was to eftablifh a hierarchy for themfelves, rather than to procure happinefs for others. It was accordingly condemned with vehe- mence and fuccefs by Ambrofius, Prudentius, and other orthodox leaders of the age.

It was from the ancient fyftem of emanations, that the general hofpitality which charaderifed the manners of the heroic ages, and which is fo beautifully reprefented in the Odyjfey of Homer, in a great meafure arofe. The poor, and the ftranger who wandered in the ftreet and begged at the door, were fuppofed to be animated by a portion of the fame divine fpirit which fuftained the great and powerful. They are all from Jupiter, fays Homer, and a Jmall gift is acceptable? This benevolent fentiment has been compared by the Englifh commentators to that of the Jewifh moralift, who fays, that he who giveth to the poor lendeth to the Lord, who will rep ay him tenfold? But it is fcarcely poffible for anything to be more different: Homer promifes no other reward for charity than the benevolence of the aftion itfelf; but the Ifraelite holds out that which has always been the great motive for charity among his countrymen — the profped of being repaid ten-fold. They are always ready to fhow their bounty upon fuch incentives, if they can be perfuaded that they are founded upon good fecurity. It was the opinion, however, of many of the moft learned among the ancients, that the principles of the Jewifh religion were originally the fame as thofe of the Greek, and that their God was no other than the creator and generator Bacchus,* who, being viewed

1 Symmach. Ep. i o ^ 6 1 . Themift. Orat ad Imperat.

2 Qdyjf. ^, ver. 207. 3 See Pope's Odyjfey. ^ Tacit. Hijior. lib. v.



through the gloomv medium of the hierarchy, appeared to them a jealous and irafcible God; and fo gave a more auftere and unfociable form to their devotion. The golden vine preferved in the temple at Jerufalem/ and the taurine forms of the cherubs, between which the Deity was fuppofed to refide, were fymbols fo exadlly fimilar to their own, that they naturally concluded them meant to exprefs the fame ideas ; efpecially as there was nothing in the avowed principles of the Jewifh worfhip to which they could be applied. The ineffable name alfo, which, according to the Mafforethic punctuation, is pronounced Jehovah^ was anciently pronounced Jaho^ law, or levco^ which was a title of Bacchus, the nodurnal fun;^ as was alfo SabaziuSy or Sabadius^ which is the fame word as Sabbaoth^ one of the fcriptural titles of the true God, only adapted to the pronunciation of a more polifhed language. The Latin name for the Supreme God belongs alfo to the fame root; Iv-iraTTjp^ Jupiter, fignifying Father leu', though written after the ancient manner, without the diphthong, which was not in ufe for many ages after the Greek colonies fettled in Latium, and intro- duced the Arcadian alphabet. We find St. Paul likewife acknow- ledging, that the Jupiter of the poet Aratus was the God whom he adored;^ and Clemens of Alexandria explains St. Peter's pro- hibition of worfhipping after the manner of the Greeks, not to mean a prohibition of worfhipping the fame God, but merely of the corrupt mode in which he was then worfhipped.*'

1 The vine and goblet of Bacchus arc alfo the ufual devices upon the Jewifh and Samaritan coins, which were ftruclc under the Afmonean kings.

~ Hieron. Comm. in Pfalm. viii. Diodor. Sic. lib. i. Philo-Bybl. ap. Eufeb. Prep. Evang. lib. 1. c. ix.

3 Macrob. Sat. lib. i. c. xviii. ^ Ibid. ^ ASl. Apojl. c. xvii. ver. 28.

^ Stromal, lib. v.









ICHARD PAYNE KNIGHT has written withgreat

learning on the origin and hiftory of the worfliip of Priapus among the ancients. This worfhip, which was but a part of that of the generative powers, appears to have been the moft ancient of the fuper- ftitions of the human race/ has prevailed more or lefs among all known peoples before the introduction of Chriftianity, and, fingularly enough, fo deeply it feems to have been implanted in human nature, that even the promulgation of the Gofpel did not abolifh it, for it continued to exift, accepted and often encouraged by the mediaeval clergy. The occasion of Payne Knight's work.

^ There appears to be a chance of this worfhip being claimed for a very early period in the hiftory of the human race. It has been recently ftated in the " Moni- teur," that, in the province of Venice, in Italy, excavations in a bone-cave have brought to light, beneath ten feet of ftalagmite, bones of animals, moftly poft- tertiary, of the ufual defcription found in fuch places, flint implements, with a needle of bone having an eye and point, and a plate of an argillaceous compound, on which was fcratched a rude drawing of a phallus. — Moniteur, Jan. 1865.


was the difcovery that this worfhip continued to prevail in his time, in a very remarkable form, at Ifernia in the kingdom of Naples, a full defcription of which will be found in his work. The town of Ifernia was deftroyed, with a great portion of its inhabitants, in the terrible earthquake which fo fearfully devaftated the kingdom of Naples on the 26th of July, 1805, nineteen years after the appear- ance of the book alluded to. Perhaps with it perifhed the laft trace of the worfhip of Priapus in this particular form ; but Payne Knight was not acquainted with the fad that this fuperftition, in a variety of forms, prevailed throughout Southern and Weftern Europe largely during the Middle Ages, and that in fome parts it is hardly extind at the prefent day ; and, as its effeds were felt to a more confiderable extent than people in general fuppofe in the moft inti- mate and important relations of fociety, whatever we can do to throw light upon its mediaeval exiftence, though not an agreeable fubjed, cannot but form an important and valuable contribution to the better knowledge of mediaeval hiftory. Many interefting fads relating to this fubjed were brought together in a volume publifhed in Paris by Monfieur J. A. Dulaure, under the title, Des Divin- ites Generatrices chez les Anciens et les Modernes, forming part of an Hijloire Ahregee des differens Cukes, by the fame author.^ This book, however, is ftill very imperfed ; and it is the defign of the following pages to give, with the moft interefting of the fads already colleded by Dulaure, other fads and a defcription and explanation of monuments, which tend to throw a greater and more general light on this curious fubjed.

The medieval worftiip of the generative powers, reprefented by the generative organs, was derived from two diftind fources. In the firft place, Rome invariably carried into the provinces ftie had

1 The fecond edition of this work, publifhed in 1825, is by much the beft, and is confiderably enlarged from the firft.


conquered her own inftitutions and forms of wor{hip,and eftahlifhed them permanently. In exploring the antiquities of thefe provinces, we are aftonifhed at the abundant monuments of the worfhip of Priapus in all the fhapes and with all the attributes and accompani- ments, with which we are already fo well acquainted in Rome and Italy. Among the remains of Roman civilization in Gaul, we find ftatues or ftatuettes of Priapus, altars dedicated to him, the gardens and fields entrufted to his care, and the phallus, or male member, figured in a variety of fhapes as a proteding power againft evil influences of various kinds. With this idea the well-known figure was fculptured on the walls of public buildings, placed in confpicuous places in the interior of the houfe, worn as an orna- ment by women, and fufpended as an amulet to the necks of chil- dren. Erotic fcenes of the mofl: extravagant defcription covered veflels of metal, earthenware, and glafs, intended, no doubt, for feft;ivals and ufages more or lefs connected with the worfhip of the principle of fecundity.

At Aix in Provence there was found, on or near the fite of the ancient baths, to which it had no doubt fome relation, an enormous phallus, encircled with garlands, fculptured in white marble. At Le Chatelet, in Champagne, on the fite of a Roman town, a coloffal phallus was alfo found. Similar objeds in bronze, and of fmaller dimenfions, are fo common, that explorations are feldom carried on upon a Roman fite in which they are not found, and examples of fuch objefts abound in the mufeums, public or private, of Roman antiquities. The phallic worfhip appears to have flourifhed efpecially at Nemaufus, now reprefented by the city of Nimes in the fouth of France, where the fymbol of this worfhip appeared in fculpture on the walls of its amphitheatre and on other buildings, in forms fome of which we can hardly help regarding as fanciful, or even playful. Some of the more remarkable of thefe are figured in our plates, XXV and xxvi.


The firft ofthefe/ is the figure of a double phallus. Itisfculp- tured on the lintel of one of the vomitories, or ifTues, of the fecond range of feats of the Roman amphitheatre, near the entrance-gate which looks to the fouth. The double and the triple phallus are very common among the fmall Roman bronzes, which appear to have ferved as amulets and for other fimilar purpofes. In the latter, one phallus ufually ferves as the body, and is furnifhed with legs, generally thofe of the goat ; a fecond occupies the ufual place of this organ ; and a third appears in that of a tail. On a pilafter of the amphitheatre of Nimes we fee a triple phallus of this defcrip- tion,^ with goat's legs and feet. A fmall bell is fufpended to the fmaller phallus in front ; and the larger organ which forms the body is furnifhed with wings. The picture is completed by the introdudlion of three birds, two of which are pecking the unveiled head of the principal phallus, while the third is holding down the tail with its foot.

Several examples of thefe triple phalli occur in the Mufee Secret of the antiquities of Herculaneum and Pompeii. In the examples figured in that work,the hind part of the main phallus aflumes clearly the form of a dog ;^ and to mod of them are attached fmall bells, the explanation of which appears as yet to be very unfatisfad:ory. The wings alfo are common attributes of the phallus in thefe monuments. Plutarch is quoted as an authority for the explanation of the triple phallus as intended to fignify multiplication of its productive faculty.*

On the top of another pilafter of the amphitheatre at Nimes, to

the right of the principal weftern entrance, was a bas-relief, alfo

1 Plate XXV, Fig. i. 2 See our Plate xxv. Fig. 2.

3 The writer of the text to the Mufce Secret fuppofes that this circumflance has fome reference to the double meaning given to the Greek word kvwv, which was used for the generative organ.

4 See Augufte Pelet, Catalogue du Mufee de Nimes.



reprefenting a triple phallus, with legs of dog, and winged, hut with a further accompaniment.^ A female, drefied in the Roman ftola, ftands upon the phallus forming the tail, and holds both it and the one forming the body with a bridle." This bas-relief was taken down in 1829, and is now preferved in the mufeum of Nimes. A ftill more remarkable monument of this clafs was found in the courfe of excavations made at Nimes in 1825. It is en- graved in our plate xxvi, and reprefents a bird, apparently in- tended for a vulture, with fpread wings and phallic tail, fitting on four eggs, each of which is defigned, no doubt, to reprefent the female organ. The local antiquaries give to this, as to the other fimilar objeds, an emblematical fignification ; but it may perhaps be more rightly regarded as a playful conception of the imagina- tion. A fimilar defign, with fome modifications, occurs not unfre- quently among Gallo-Roman antiquities. We have engraved a figure of the triple phallus governed, or guided, by the female,^ from a fmall bronze plate, on which it appears in bas-relief; it is now preferved in a private colledlion in London, with a duplicate, which appears to have been caft: from the fame mould, though the plate is cut through, and they were evidently intended for fufpenfion from the neck. Both came from the col- ledion of M. Baudot of Dijon. The lady here bridles only the principal phallus ; the legs are, as in the monument lafl: deicribed, thofe of a bird, and it is fl:anding upon three egiTs, apple-formed, and reprefenting the organ of the other fex,

^ Plate XXV, Fig. 3.

2 A French antiquary has given an emblematical interpretation of this figure. '* Perhaps," he fays, "it fignifies the empire of woman extending over the three ages of man ; on youth, charafterized by the bell ; on the age of vigour, the ardour of which (lie reilrains ; and on old age, which (he fuftains." This is perhaps more ingenious than convincing.

3 See our Plate xxxvi. Fig. 3.



. In regard to this laft-mentioned objeft, another very remarkable monument of what appears at Nimes to have been by no means a fecret worfhip, was found there during fome excavations on the fite of the Roman baths. It is a fquared mafs of ftone, the four fides of which, like the one reprefented in our engraving, are covered with fimilar figures of the fexual charaderiftics of the female, arranged in rows/ It has evidently ferved as a bafe, pro- bably to a ftatue, or poffibly to an altar. This curious monument is now preferved in the mufeum at Nimes.

As Nimes was evidently a centre of this Priapic worfhip in the fouth of Gauljfo there appear to have been, perhaps leffer, centres in other parts, and we may trace it to the northern extremities of the Roman province, even to the other fide of the Rhine. On the fite of Roman fettlements near Xanten, in lower Hefre,a large quantity of pottery and other objeds have been found, of a character to leave no doubt as to the prevalence of this worfiiip in that quarter." But the Roman fettlement which occupied the fite of the modern city of Antwerp appears to have been one of the mofl: remarkable feats of the worfliip of Priapus in the north of Gaul, and it con- tinued to exifl: there till a comparatively modern period.

When we crofs over to Britain we find this worfiiip efl:ablifiied no lefs firmly and extenfively in that ifland. Statuettes of Priapus, phallic bronzes, pottery covered with obfcene piftures, are found wherever there are any extenfive remains of Roman occupation, as our antiquaries know well. The numerous phallicfigures in bronze, found in England, are perfeftly identical in charader with thofe

1 See Plate xxv. Fig. 4.

2 Two Roman towns, Caftra Vetera and Colonia Trajana, ftood within no great diilance of Xanten, and Ph. Houben, a " notarius " of this town, formed a private mufeum of antiquities found there, and in 1839 publifhed engravings of them, with a text by Dr. Franz Fiedler. The erotic objefts form a feparate work under the title, Antike erotifche Bildwerke in Hoube?is Antiquarium zu Xa?ite?i.


which occur in I^Vance and in Italy. In illuftration of this fad, we give two examples of the triple phallus, which appears to have been, perhaps in accordance with the explanation given by Plu- tarch, an amulet in great favour. The firfl: was found in London in 1842.^ As in the examples found on the continent, a principal phallus forms the body, having the hinder parts of apparently a dog, with wings of a peculiar form, perhaps intended for thofe of a dragon. Several fmall rings are attached, no doubt for the pur- pofe of fufpending bells. Our fecond example'" was found at York in 1844. It difplays a peculiarity of aftion which, in this cafe at leaft, leaves no doubt that the hinder parts were intended to be thofe of a dog. All antiquaries of any experience know the great number of obfcene fubjefts which are met with among the fine red pottery which is termed Samian ware, found fo abundantly in all Roman fites in our ifland. They reprefent erotic fcenes in every fenfe of the word, promifcuous intercourfe between the fexes, even vices contrary to nature, with figures of Priapus, and phallic emblems. We give as an example one of the lejs exceptionable fcenes of this defcription, copied from a Samian bowl found in Cannon Street, London, in 1838.'* The lamps, chiefly of earthenware, form ano- ther clafs of objeds on which fuch fcenes are frequently pourtrayed, and to which broadly phallic forms are fometimes given. One of thefe phallic lamps is here reprefented, on the fame plate with the bowl of Samian ware juft defcribed.* It is hardly neceffary to explain the fubjed reprefented by this lamp, which was found in London a few years ago.

All this obfcene pottery mufl: be regarded, no doubt, as a proof of a great amount of diflolutenefs in the morals of Roman focicty in Britain, but it is evidence of fomethingmore. It is hardly likely

1 See Plate xxvii, Fig. 3. 2 pjate xxvii. Fig. 4.

3 Plate XXVII, Fig. i. < Plate xxvii. Fig. 2.


that fuch objefts could be in common ufe at the family table ; and we are led to fuppofe that they were employed on fpecial occafions, feftivals, perhaps, connected with the licentious worfhip of which we are fpeaking, and fuch as thofe defcribed in fuch ftrong terms in the fatires of Juvenal. But monuments are found in this ifland which bear ftill more diredt evidence to the existence of the worfhip of Priapus during the Roman period.

In the parifh of Adel, in Yorkfhire, are confiderable traces of a Roman ftation, which appears to have been a place of fome import- ance, and which certainly poffefled temples. On the fite of thefe were found altars, and other ftones with infcriptions, which, after being long preferved in an outhoufe of the redlory at Adel, are now depofited in the mufeum of the Philofophical Society at Leeds. One of the moft curious of thefe, which we have here engraved for the firft time,^ appears to be a votive offering to Priapus, who feems to be addreffed under the name of Mentula. It is a rough, unfquared ftone, which has been feleded for pofTeffing a tolerably flat and fmooth furface ; and the figure and letters were made with a rude implement, and by an unfkilled workman, who was evidently unable to cut a continuous fmooth line. The middle of the flone is occupied by the figure of a phallus, and round it we read very diftindly the words: —


The author of the infcription may have been an ignorant Latinifl: as well as an unfkilful fculptor, and perhaps miftook the ligulated letters, overlooking the limb which would make the L fland for VL, and giving A for AE. It would then read Priminus Men- tula^ Priminus to Mentula (the obje6l perfonified), and it may have

1 Plate XXVIII, Fig. i,



been a votive offering from fome individual named Priminus, who was in want of a heir, or laboured under fome fexual infirmity, to Priapus, whofe afliftance he fought. Another interpretation has been fuggefted, on the fuppoiition that Mentla, or perhaps (the L being defigned for ILligulated) Mentilaor Mentilla, might be the name of a female joined with her hufband in this offering for their common good. The former of thefe interpretations feems, how- ever, to be the mofl probable. This monument belongs probably to rather a late date in the Roman period. Another exvoto of the fame clafs was found at Weflerwood Fort in Scotland, one of the Roman fortreffes on the wall of Antoninus. This monument^ confifted of a fquare flab of flone, in the middle of which was a phallus, and under it the words EX • VOTO. Above were the letters XAN, meaning, perhaps, that the offerer had laboured ten years MwdtY the grievance of which he fought redrefs from Pri- apus. We may point alfo to a phallic monument of another kind, which reminds us in fome degree of the finer feu Iptu res at Nimes. At Houfefteads, in Northumberland, are feen the extenfive and impofing remains of one of the Roman flations on the Wall of Hadrian named Borcovicus. The walls of the entrance gateways are efpecially well preferved, and on that of the guard-houfe attached to one of them, is a flab of ftone prefenting the figure given in our plate xxviii, fig. 3. It is a rude delineation of a phallus with the legs of a fowl, and reminds us of fome of the monuments in France and Italy previoufly defcribed. Thefe phal- lic images were no doubt expofed in fuch' fituations becaufe they were fuppofed to exercife a protedive influence over the locality, or

' See Plate xxviii, Fig. 2. Horfeley, who engraved this monument in his Britannia Romana, Scotland, fig. xix. has inferted a fig-leaf in place of the phallus, but with flight indications of the form of the objcft it was intended to conceal. We are not aware if this monument is lliil in exiltence.


over the building, and the individual who looked upon the figure believed himfelf fafe, during that day at leaft, from evil influences of various defcriptions. They are found, we believe, in fome other Roman ftations, in a fimilar pofition to that of the phallus at Houfefteads.

Although the worfhip of which we are treating prevailed fo exten- fively among the Romans and throughout the Roman provinces, it was far from being peculiar to them, for the fame fuperftition formed part of the religion of the Teutonic race, and was carried with that race wherever it fettled. The Teutonic god, who anfwered to the Roman Priapus, was called, in Anglo-Saxon, Frea, in Old Norfe, Freyr, and, in Old German, Fro. Among the Swedes, the princi- pal feat of his worfliip was at Upfala, and Adam of Bremen, who lived in the eleventh century, when paganifm ftill retained its hold on the north, in defcribing the forms under which the gods were there reprefented, tells us that " the third of the gods at Upfala was Fricco [another form of the name], who beftowed on mortals peace and pleafure, and who was reprefented with an immen/e pri- apus ; " and he adds that, at the celebration of marriages, they offered facrifice to Fricco.^ This god, indeed, like the Priapus of the Romans, prefided over generation and fertility, either of animal life or of the produce of the earth, and was invoked accordingly. Ihre, in his Glojfarium Sueco-Gothicum, mentions objeds of antiquity dug up in the north of Europe, which clearly prove the prevalence of phallic rites. To this deity, or to his female reprefentative of the fame name, the Teutonic Venus, Friga, the fifth day of the week was dedicated, and on that account received its name, in Anglo- Saxon, Frige-daeg, and in modern Englifh Friday. Frigedaeg appears

1 " Tertius eft Fricco, pacem voluptatemque largiens mortalibus, cujus etiam fimu- lachrum fingunt ingenti priapo ; fi nuptias celebrandas funt, Fricconi [facrificia offe- runt.] " — Adam Bremens, De Situ Daniee, p. 23, ed. 1629.


to have been a name fometimes given in Anglo-Saxon to Frea him- felf; in a charter of the date of 959, printed in Kemble's Co<^^x Z)//)/o- maticus^ one of the marks on a boundary-line of land is Frigeda^ges- Trc'^ow, meaning apparently Frea's tree, which was probably a tree dedicated to that god, and the fcene of Priapic rites. There is a place called Fridaythorpe in Yorkfhire, and Frifton, a name which occurs in feveral parts of England, means, probably, the ftone of Frea or of Friga ; and we feem juftified in fuppofing that this and other names commencing with the fyllable Fri or Fry, are fo many monuments of the exiftence of the phallic worfhip among our Anglo-Saxon forefathers. Two cuftoms cherifhed among our old Englifh popular fuperftitions are believed to have been derived from this worfhip, the need-fires, and the proceffion of the boar's head at the Chriftmas feftivities. The former were fires kindled at the period of the fummer folftice, and were certainly in their origin religious obfervances. The boar was intimately connected with the worfhip of Frea.^

From our want of a more intimate knowledge of this partof Teu- tonic paganifm, we are unable to decide whether fome of the fuperfti- tious pradlices of the middle ages were derived from the Romans or from the peoples who eftablifhed themfelves in the provinces after the overthrow of the weftern empire; but in Italy and in Gaul (the fouthern parts efpecially), where the Roman inflitutions and fenti- ments continued with more perfiftence to hold their influence, it was the phallic worfl-iip of the Romans which, gradually modified in its forms, was thus preferved, and, though the records of fuch a worfhip are naturally accidental and imperfed, yet we can diflindly trace its exiftence to a very late period. Thus, we have clear evi- dence that the phallus, in its fimple form, was worfhipped by the mediaeval Chriflians, and that the forms of Chriflian prayer

1 See Grimm's Deutfche Mythologie, p. 139, firft edition.


and invocation were aftually addrefled to it. One name of the male organ among the Romans was fafcinum; it was under this name that it was fufpended round the necks of women and children, and under this name efpecially it was fuppofed to poffefs magical influences which not only a6ted upon others, but de- fended thofe who were under its protection from magical or other evil influences from without. Hence are derived the words tofaf- cinate 2i\\di fafcination. The word is ufed by Horace, and efpecially in the epigrams of the Priapeia^ which may be confidered in fome degree as the exponents of the popular creed in thefe matters. Thus we have in one of thefe epigrams the lines, —

" Placet, Priape ? qui fub arboris coma Soles, facrum revinfte pampino caput. Ruber federe cum rubente fafcino. ' '

Priap. Carm. Ixxxiv.

It feems probable that this had become the popular, or vulgar, word for the phallus, at leaft taken in this point of view, at the clofe of the Roman power, for the firfl: very difliind traces of its worfliip which we find afterwards introduce it under this name, which fub- fequently took in French the ioxm. fefne. The mediaeval worfliip of t\vQ fafcinum is firfl fpoken of in the eighth century. An ecclefiaf- tical trad entitled fudicia Sacerdotalia de Criminibus^ which is afcribed to the end of that century, direds that "if any one has per- formed incantation to the fafcinum, or any incantation whatever, except any one who chaunts the Creed or the Lord's Prayer, let him do penance on bread and water during three lents." An ad of the

^ Martene and Darand, Veterum Scriptorum AmpUJJima ColleSiio, torn, vii, p. 35. Si quis prsecantaverit ad fafcinum, velqualefcumque praecantationes excepto fymbolum fanftum aut orationem dominicam qui cantat et cui cantatur, tres quadrigefimas in pane et aqua poeniteat.


council of Chalons, held in the ninth century, prohibits the fame practice almoft in the fame words; and Burchardus repeats it again in the twelfth century,^ a proof of the continued exiftence of this worfhip. That it was in full force long after this is proved by the ftatutes of the fynod of Mans, held in 1247, which enjoin fimihirly the punifhment for him "who has finned to th.^ fafcinum^ or has performed any incantations, except the creed, the pater nofter, or other canonical prayer."'^ This fame provifion was adopted and renewed in the ftatutes of the fynod of Tours, held in 1396, in which, as they were publifhed in French, the h.cit'in fafcinum is reprefented by the French fefne. The fajcinum to which fuch worfhip was direfted muft have been fomething more than a fmall amulet.

This brings us to the clofe of the fourteenth century, and fhows us how long the outward worfhip of the generative powers, repre- fented by their organs, continued to exift in Weftern Europe to fuch a point as to engage the attention of ecclefiaftical fynods. During the previous century fads occurred in our own ifland illuf- trating ftill more curioufly the continuous exiflence of the worfhip of Priapus, and that under circumftances which remind us altoge- ther of the details of the phallic worfhip under the Romans. It will be remembered that one great objedl of this worfhip was to obtain fertility either in animals or in the ground, for Priapus was the god of the horticulturift and the agriculturifl:. St. Auguftine, declaiming againft the open obfcenities of the Roman feftival of the Liberalia, informs us that an enormous phallus was curried in a

' D. Burchardi Dccrctorum libri, lib. x, c. 49.

^ Martcne et Durand, AmpliJJima Colledio Veterum Scriptorum, torn, vii, col. i 377. Si peccavcrit ad fafcinum, vcl qualcrciimquc prajcantationcs feccrit, excepto iymbolo et oratione dominica, vcl alia oratione canonica, et qui cantat, et cui cantatur, trcs quadragefimas pceniteat.



magnificent chariot into the middle of the public place of the town with great ceremony, where the moft refpeftable matron advanced and placed a garland of flowers "on this obfcene figure;" and this, he fays, was done to appeafe the god, and "to ob- tain an abundant harveft, and remove enchantments from the land."^ We learn from the Chronicle of Lanercoil that, in the year 1268, a peftilence prevailed in the Scottifh diftrid of Lothian, which was very fatal to the cattle, to counteract which fome of the clergy — bejiiales, habitu claujtrales, non animo — taught the peafantry to make a fire by the rubbing together of wood (this was the need- fire), and to raife up the image of Priapus, as a means of faving their cattle, " When a lay member of the Cifliercian order at Fenton had done this before the door of the hall, and had fprinkled the cattle with a dog's tefl:icles dipped in holy water, and complaint had been made of this crime of idolatry againfl: the lord of the manor, the latter pleaded in his defence that all this was done with- out his knowledge and in his abfence, but added, 'while until the prefent month of June other people's cattle fell ill and died, mine were always found, but now every day two or three of mine die, fo that 1 have few left for the labours of the field.' "^ Fourteen years after this, in 1282, an event of the fame kind occurred at Inver-

1 S. Augullini De Civit. Dei, lib. vii, c. 21.

2 Pro fidei divinse integritate fervanda recolat leftor quod, cum hoc anno in Laodonia peilis graflaretur in pecudes armenti, quam vocant ufitate lungeffbuth, qui- dam bertiales, habitu claullrales non animo, docebant idiotas patris ignem confric- tione de lignis educere, et fimulacrum Priapi ilatuere, et per haec belliis fuccurrere. Quod cum unus laicus Ciilercienfis apud Fentone feciflet ante atrium aulse, ac in- tinftis tefticulis canis in aquam benedidtam fuper animalia fparfifiet ; ac pro invento tacinore idolatrise dominus vills a quodam fideli argueretur, ille pro fua innocentia obtendebat, quod ipfo nefciente et ablente fuerant ha;c omnia perpetrata, et adjecit,

    • et cum ad ufque hunc menfem Junium aliorum animalia languerent et deficerent,

mea Temper i'ana erant, nunc vero quotidie mihi moriuntur duo vel tria, ita quod agricuitui pauca luperlunt." — Chron. de La7jercoft. ed. Stevenfon, p. 85.


keithing, in the prefent county of Fife in Scotland. The caiife of the following proceedings is not ftated, but it was probably the fame as that for which the ciftercian of Lothian had recourfe to the worfhip of Priapus. In the Eafter week of the year juft ftated (March 29 — April 5), a parifh prieft of Inverkeithing, named John, performed the rites of Priapus, by colleding the young girls of the town, and making thern dance round the figure of this god ; without any regard for the fex of thefe worfhippers, he carried a wooden image of the male members of generation before them in the dance, and himfelf dancing with them, he accompanied their fongs with movements in accordance, and urged them to licentious adions by his no lefs licentious language. The more modeft part of thofe who were prefent felt fcandalized by thefe proceedings, and expof- tulated with the prieft, but he treated their words with contempt, and only gave utterance to coarfer obfcenities. He was cited before his biftiop, defended himfelf upon the common ufage of the coun- try, and was allov/ed to retain his benefice; but he muft have been rather a worldly prieft, after the ftyle of the middle ages, for a year afterwards he was killed in a vulgar brawl. ^

The practice of placing the figure of a phallus on the walls of buildings, derived, as we have feen, from the Romans, prevailed alfo in the middle ages, and the buildings efpecially placed under the influence of this fymbol were churches. It was believed to be

1 Infuper hoc tempore apud Invcrcliethin, in hehdomeda pafchaj (March 29 — April 5), facerdos parochialis, nomine Johannes, Priapi prophana parans, congre- gatis ex villa puellulis, cogebat eas, choreis faftis, Libero patri circuire ; ut ille feminas in exercitu habuit, fie ifte, procacitatis caufa, membra humana virtuti iemi- narije iervientia lupcr allerem artificiata ante talem chorcam pr.Tferebat, et ipfe tripudians cum cantantibus motu mimico omnes inipeftantes et vcrbo impudico ad luxuriam incitabat. Hi qui honefto matrimonio honorem deferebant, tam iniolenti officio, licet reverentur perfonam, fcandalizabantur propter gradus emincntiam. Si quis ei feorlum ex amore correptionis lermonem int'erret, fiebat dcterior, et conviciis eos impctcbat. — Chron. dc LancercoJ}. ed. Stcvenfon, p. 109.


a protedion againft enchantments of all kinds, of which the people of thofe times lived in conftant terror, and this protedion extended over the place and over thofe who frequented it, provided they caft a confiding look upon the image. Such images were feen, ufually upon the portals, on the cathedral church of Touloufe, on more than one church in Bourdeaux, and on various other churches in France, but, at the time of the revolution, they were often deftroyed as marks only of the depravity of the clergy. Dulaure tells us that an artift, whom he knew, but whofe name he has not given, had made drawings of a number of thefe^ figures which he had met with in fuch fituations.^ A Chriftian faint exercifed fome of the qualities thus deputed to Priapus ; the image of St. Nicholas was ufually painted in a confpicuous pofition in the church, for it was believed that whoever had looked upon it was protected againft enchant- ments, and efpecially againft that great objed: of popular terror the evil eye, during the reft of the day.

It is a lingular fad: that in Ireland it was the female organ which was ftiown in this pofition of protedor upon the churches, and the elaborate though rude manner in which thefe figures were fculp- tured, fhow that they were confidered as objeds of great im- portance. They reprefented a female expofing herfelf to view in the moft unequivocal manner, and are carved on a block which appears to have ferved as the key-ftone to the arch of the door-way of the church, where they were prefented to the gaze of all who entered. They appear to have been found principally in the very old churches, and have been moftly taken down, fo that they are only found among the ruins. People have given them the name of

1 He adds in a note : — '< Les deffins de cet artifte, dellines a I'Academie des Belles Lettres, font pafles, on ne fait comment, entre les mains d'un particulier qui en prive le public," — ^J. A. Dulaure, Hijloire de differe?is Cultes, tom. ii. p. 251, 8vo. 1825.


Shelah-na-Gig^^\\\(i\\^ we are told, means in Irifh Julian the Giddy, and is (imply a term for an immodeft woman; but it is well under- ftood that they were intended as protecting charms againft the faf- cination of the evil eye. We have given copies of all the examples yet known in our plates xxix and xxx. The firft of thefe^ was found in an old church at Rocheftown, in the county of Tipperary, where it had long been known among the people of the neighbour- hood by the name given above. It was placed in the arch over the doorway, but has fince been taken away. Our fecond example of the Shelah-na-Gig'"^ was taken from an old church lately pulled down in the county Cavan,and is now preferved in the mufeum of the Society of Antiquaries of Dublin. The third^ was found at Ballinahend Caftle, alfo in the county of Tipperary; and the fourth** is preferved in the mufeum at Dublin, but we are not in- formed from whence it was obtained. The next;^ which is alfo now preferved in the Dublin Mufeum, was taken from the old church on the White I{land,in Lough Erne, county Fermanagh. This church is fuppofed by the Irifh antiquaries to be a ftrucflure of very great antiquity, for fome of them would carry its date as far back as the feventh century, but this is probably an exaggeration. The one which follows" was furnifhed by an old church pulled down by order of the ecclefiaftical commifTioners, and it was prefented to the mufeum at Dublin, by the late dean Davvfon. Our laft example was for- merly in the pofTelfion of Sir Benjamin Chapman, Bart., of Killoa Caftle, Weftmeath, and is now in a private colledlion in London. It was found in 1859 "^^ Chloran, in afield on Sir Benjamin's eftate known by the name of the "Old Town," from whence ftones had

1 Plate XXIX, Fig. i. - Plate xxix. Fig. 2.

3 Plate XXIX, Fig. 3. ■* Plate xxix. Fig. 4.

^ Plate xxx, Fig. i. Plate xxx, Fig. 2.

Plate xxx, Fig. 3.


been removed at previous periods, though there are now very fmall remains of building. This ftone was found at a depth of about five feet from the furface, which fhows that the building, a church no doubt, muft have fallen into ruin a long time ago. Contiguous to this field, and at a diftance of about two hundred yards from the fpot where the Shelah-na-Gig was found, there is an abandoned churchyard, feparated from the Old Town field only by a loofe ftone wall.

The belief in the falutary power of this image appears to be a fuperftition of great antiquity, and to exift ftill among all peoples who have not reached a certain degree of civilization. The univer- fality of this fuperftition leads us to think that Herodotus may have erred in the explanation he has given of certain rather re- markable monuments of a remote antiquity. He tells us that Sefoftris, king of Egypt, raifed columns in fome of the countries he conquered, on which he caufed to be figured the female organ of generation as a mark of contempt for thofe who had fubmitted eafily.^ May not thefe columns have been intended, if we knew the truth, as protedions for the people of the diftrid; in which they ftood, and placed in the pofition where they could moft con- veniently be feen ? This fuperftitious fentiment may alfo offer the true explanation of an incident which is faid to have been repre- fented in the myfteries of Eleufis. Ceres, wandering over the earth in fearch of her daughter Proferpine, and overcone with grief for her lofs, arrived at the hut of an Athenian peafant woman named Baubo, who received her hofpitably, and offered her to drink the refrefliing mixture which the Greeks call Cyceon {jcvKewv). The goddefs rejedled the offered kindnefs, and refufed

1 Herodotus, Euterpe, cap. 102. Diodorus Siculus adds to the account given by Herodotus, that Sefoftris also erefled columns bearing the male generative organ as a compliment to the peoples who had defended themfelves bravely.



all confolation. Baubo, in her diftrefs, bethought her of another expedient to allay the grief of her gueft. She relieved her fexual organs of that outward fign which is the evidence of puberty, and then prefented them to the view of Ceres, who, at the fight, laughed, forgot her forrows, and drank the cyceon.' The prevail- ing belief in the beneficial influence of this fight, rather than a mere pleafantry, feems to aflxjrd the beft explanation of this fliory ; and the fame fuperftition is no doubt embodied in an old mediaeval fi:ory which we give in a note as it is told in that celebrated book of the fixteenth century Le Moyen de Parvenir?

This fuperfl:ition which, as fihown by the Shelah-na-Gigs of the Irifii churches, prevailed largely in the middle ages, explains ano- ther clafs of antiquities which are not uncommon. Thefe are fmall figures of nude females expofing themfelves in exa(!l:ly the fame manner as in the fculptures on the churches in Ireland juft alluded to. Such figures are found not only among Roman, Greek, and Egyptian antiquities, but among every people who had any know- ledge of art, from the aborigines of America to the far more civi-

1 This llory is told by the two Chriilian Fathers, Arnobius, Adverfus Gentes, lib. V. c. 5, and Clemens Alexandrinus, Protrepticus, p. 17, ed. Oxon. 171 5. The latter writer merely Hates that Baubo expofed her parts to the view of the goddefs, without the incident of preparation mentioned by Arnobius.

2 <' Hermes. On nomme ainfi ceux qui n'ont point vu le con de leur femme ou de leur garce. Le pauvre valet de chez nous n'etoit done pas coquebin ; il eut beau le voir. — Varro. Quand? — Hermes. Attendez, etant en fian^ailles, il vouloit prendre le cas dc fa fiancee ; elle ne le vouloit pas ; il faifoit le malade, et elle lui demandoit ; ' Qu'y a-t-il, mon ami ? ' ' Helas, ma mie, je fuis fi malade, que je n'en puis plus ; jc mourrai fi je ne vois ton cas.' * Vraiment voire ? ' dit-elle. * Helas! oui, fi je I'avois vu, je guerirois.' Elle ne lui voulut point montrer ; a la fin, ils furent maries. Iladvint, trois ou quatre mois apres, qu'il fut fort malade ; et il envoya fa femme au medecin pour porter de fon eau. En allant, elle s'avifa de ce qu'il lui avoit dit en fiangailles. Elle retourna vitement, et fe vint mettrc fur le lit ; puis, levant cottc et chcmife, lui prefenta fon cela en belle vue, et lui difoit : ' Jean, regarde le con, et te gueris.' " — Le Moyen de Parvenir, c. xxviii.


lized natives of Japan ; and it would be eafy to give examples from almoft every country we know, but we confine ourfelves to our more fpecial part of the fubjed:. In the laft century, a number of fmall ftatuettes in metal, in a rude but very peculiar ftyle of art, were found in the duchy of Mecklenburg-Strelitz, in a part of Germany formerly occupied by the Vandals, and by the tribe of the Obotrites, confidered as a diviiion of the Vendes. They appeared to be intended to reprefent fome of the deities worfhipped by the people who had made them ; and fome of them bore in- fcriptions, one of which was in Runic charaders. From this cir- cumftance we lliould prefume that they belonged to a period not much, if any, older than the fall of the Weftern Empire. Some time afterwards, a fevv' ftatuettes in metal were found in the ifland of Sar- dinia, fo exactly fimilar to thofe juft mentioned, that D'Hancarville, who publifhed an account of them with engravings, considered himfelf juftified in afcribing them to the Vandals, who occupied that ifland, as well as the trad: of Germany alluded to.^ One of thefe images, which D'Hancarville coniiders to be the Venus of the Vandal my- thology, reprefents a female in a reclining pofition, with the wings and claws of a bird, holding to view a pomegranate, open, which, as D'Hancarville remarks, was confidered as a fign reprefenting the female fexual organ. In fad, it was a form and idea more un- equivocally reprefented in the Roman figures which we have already defcribed,^ but which continued through the middle ages, and was preferved in a popular name for that organ, abricot^ or expreffed more energetically, abricot fendu^ ufed by Rabelais, and we believe ftill preferved in France. This curious image is repre- fented, after D'Hancarville, in three different points of view in our

' D'Hancarville, Antiquites Etrufques, Grecques, et Romaincs, Paris, 1785, torn. V. p. 61.

2 See our Plates xxv. Fig. 4, xxvi, and Plate xxxvi. Fig. 3.


plate.^ Several figures of a fimllar defcription, but reprefenting the fubjeft in a more matter-of-fa6t fhape, were brought from Egypt by a Frenchman who held an official fituation in that country, and three of them are now in a private colledion in London. We have engraved one of thefe fmall bronzes,^ which, as will be feen, prefents an exad: counterpart of the Shelah-na-Gig. Thefe Egyptain images belonged no doubt to the Roman period. Another fimilar figure,^ made of lead, and apparently mediaeval, was found at Avignon, and is preferved in the fame private col- ledion juft alluded to; and a third,* was dug up, about ten years ago, at Kingfton-on-Thames. The form of thefe ftatuettes feems to fhow that they were intended as portable images, for the fame purpofe as the Shelahs, which people might have ready at hand to look upon for protection whenever they were under fear of the in- fluence of the evil eye, or of any other fort of enchantment.

We have not as yet any clear evidence of the exiflience of the Shelah-na-Gig in churches out of Ireland. We have been informed that an example has been found in one of the little churches on the coaft of Devon ; and there are curious fculptures, which ap- pear to be of the fame charader, among the architectural orna- mentation of the very early church of San Fedele at Como in Italy. Three of thefe are engraved in our plate xxxii. On the top of the right hand jamb of the door^ is a naked male figure, and in the fame pofition on the other fide a female, which are defcribed to us as reprefenting Adam and Eve, and our informant, to whom we owe the drawings, defcribes that at the apex merely as "the figure of a woman holding her legs apart." We under- ftand that the furface of the fl:one in thefe fculptures is fo much

1 Plate XXXI, Figs, i, 2, 3. ^ piate xxxi. Fig. 4.

3 Plate XXXI, Fig. 5. Plate xxxvi. Fig. 4.

5 Plate xxxii. Fig. i. ^ Plate xxxii. Fig. 2.

"^ Plate XXXII, Fig. 3.


worn that it is quite uncertain whether the fexual parts were ever diftindly marked, butfrom the pofturesand pofitions of thehands, and the fituation in which thefe figures are placed, they feem to refemble clofely, except in their fuperior ftyle of art, the Shelah- na-Gigs of Ireland. There can be little doubt that the fuperftition to which thefe objecfts belonged gave rife to much of the indecent fculpture which is fo often found upon mediaeval ecclefiaftical build- ings. The late Baron von Hammer-Piirgftall publifhed a very learned paperupon monuments of various kinds which he confidered as illuftrating the fecret hiftory of the order of the Templars, from which we learn that there was in his time a feries of moft extraordi- nary obfcene fculptures in the church of Schoengraber in Auftria, of which he intended to give engravings, but the drawings had not arrived in time for his book;^ but he has engraved the capital of a column in the church of Egra, a town of Bohemia, of which we give a copy,^ in which the two fexes are difplaying to view the members, which were believed to be fo efficatious againft the power of fafcination.

The figure of the female organ, as well as the male, appears to have been employed during the middle agesof Weftern Europe far more generally than we might fuppofe, placed upon buildings as a talifman againft evil influences, and efpecially againft witchcraft and the evil eye, and it was ufed for this purpofe in many other parts of the world. It was the univerfal pradlice among the Arabs of Northern Africa to ftick up over the door of the houfe or tent, or put up nailed on a board in fome other way, the generative organ of a cow, mare, or female camel, as a talifman to avert the influence of the evil eye. It is evident that the figure of this member was far

1 See Von Hammer-Purgftall, Fundgruben des Orients, vol. vi, p. 26.

2 Von Hammer-Purgftall, Fundgruben des Orients, vol. vi, p. 35, and Plate iv. Fig. 31. — See our Plate xxxi. Fig. 6.


more liable to degradation in form than that of the male, becaufe it was much lefs eafy, in the hands of rude draughtfmen, to delineate in an intelligible form, and hence it foon afTumed fhapes which, though intended to rcprcfent it, we might rather call fymbolical of it, though no fymbolifm was intended. Thus the figure of the female organ eafily aflumed the rude form of a horfefhoe, and as the original meaning was forgotten, would be readily taken for that objed:, and a real horfefhoe nailed up for the fame purpofe. In this way originated, apparently, from the popular worfhip of the generative powers, the vulgar pracftice of nailing a horfefhoe upon buildings to proted: them and all they contain againft the power of witchcraft, a pracftice which continues to exifl among the peafantry in fome parts of England at the prefent day. Other marks are found, fometimes among the architedural ornaments, fuch as certain tri- angles and triple loops, which are perhaps typical forms of the fame objeft. Wehave been informed that there is an old church in Ireland where the male organ is drawn on one fide of the door, and the Shelah-na-Gig on the other, and that, though perhaps comparatively modern, their import as protecftive charms are well underftood. We can eafily imagine men, uncier the influence of thefe fuperftitions, when they were obliged to halt for a moment by the fide of a building, drawing upon it fuch a figure, with the defign that it fhould be a protedion to themfelves, and thus probably we derive from fuperftitious feelings the common propenfity to draw phallic figures on the fides of vacant walls and in other places.

Antiquity had made Priapus a god, the middle ages raifed him into a faint, and that under feveral names. In the fouth of France, Provence, Languedoc, and the Lyonnais, he was worfhipped under the title of St. Foutin.' This name is faid to be a mere corruption

1 Our material for the account of thefe phallic faints is taken moflly from the work of M. Dulaure.


of Fotinus or Photinus,the firft bifhop of Lyons, to whom, perhaps through giving a vulgar Interpretation to the name, people had transferred the diftinguifhing attribute of Priapus. This was a large phallus of wood, which was an objedl of reverence to the women, efpecially to thofe who were barren, who fcraped the wooden member, and, having fteeped the fcrapings in water, they drank the latter as a remedy againft their barrennefs, or adminiftered it to their hufbands in the belief that it would make them vigorous. The worfhip of this faint, as it was pradiced in various places in France at the commencement of the feventeenth century, is de- fcribed in that fingular book, the Confejfion de Sancy} We there learn that at Varailles in Provence, waxen images of the members of both fexes were offered to St. Foutin, and fufpended to the ceiling of his chapel, and the writer remarks that, as the ceiling was covered with them, when the wind blew them about, it produced an effed: which was calculated to difturb very much the devotions of the worfhippers.^ We hardly need remark that this is juft the fame kind of worfhip which exifted at Ifernia, in the kingdom of Naples, where it was prefented in the fame fhape. At Embrun, in the department of the Upper Alps, the phallus of St. Foutin was worfhipped in a different form ; the women poured a libation of wine upon the head of the phallus, which was coUeded in a vefTel, in which it was left till it became four; it was then called the " fainte vinaigre," and the women employed it for a purpofe which is only obfcurely hinted at. When the Proteflants took Embrun in 1585, they found this phallus laid up carefully

1 La Confeffion de Sancy forms the fifth volume of the Journal d^ Henri III, by Pierre de L'Elloile, ed. Duchat. See pp. 383, 391, of that volume.

2 ♦' Temoin Saint Foutin de Varailles en Provence, auquel font dediees les parties honteules de I'un et de I'autre fexe, formees en cire : le plancher de la chapelle en ell fort garni, et, quand le vent les fait entrebattre, cela debauche un peu les devotions a I'honneur de ce Saint."


among the relics in the principal church, its head red with the wine which had been poured upon it. A much larger phallus of wood, covered with leather, was an objed: of worfhip in the church of St. F.utropius at Orange, but it was feizcd by the Pro- teilants and burnt publicly in 1562. St. Foutin was fimilarly an objedl of worfhip at Porigny, at Gives in the diocefe of Viviers, at Vendre in the Bourbonnais, at Auxerre, at Puy-en-Velay, in the convent of Girouet near Sampigny, and in other places. At a diftance of about four leagues from Clermont in Auvergne, there is (or was) an ifolated rock, which prefents the form of an immenfe phallus, and which is popularly called St. Foutin. Similar phallic faints were worfhipped under the names of St. Guerlichon, or Gre- luchon, at Bourg-Dieu in the diocefe of Bourges, of St. Gilles in the Cotentin in Britany, of St. Rene in Anjou, of St. Regnaud in Bur- gundy, of St. Arnaud, and above all of St. Guignolc near Breft and at the village of La Chatelette in Berri. Many of thefe were ftill in exiftence and their worfhip in full pradice in the laft cen- tury ; in fome of them, the wooden phallus is defcribed as being much worn down by the continual procefs of fcraping, while in others the lofs fuftained by fcraping was always reftored by a miracle. This miracle, however, was a very clumfy one, for the phallus confifted of a long ftaff of wood pafTed through a hole in the middle of the body, and as the phallic end in front became fhortened, a blow of a mallet from behind thruft it forward, fo that it was reftored to its original length.

It appears that it was alfo the practice to worfhip thefe faints in another manner, which alfo was derived from the forms of the worfhip of Priapus among the ancients, with whom it was the cuftom, in the nuptial ceremonies, for the bride to ofl'er up her virginity to Priapus, and this was done by placing her fexual parts againfl; the end of the phallus, and fomctimes introducing the latter, and even completing the facrifice. This ceremony is reprefentcd in


a bas-relief in marble, an engraving of which is given in the Mufee Secret of the antiquities of Herculaneum and Pompeii ; its objeft was to conciliate the favour of the god, and to avert fterility. It is defcribed by the early Chriftian writers, fuch as Ladantius and Arnobius, as a very common pradice among the Romans; and it ftill prevails to a great extent over moft part of the Eaft, from India to Japan and the iilands of the Pacific. In a public fquare in Batavia, there is a cannon taken from the natives and placed there as a trophy by the Dutch government. It prefents the peculiarity that the touch-hole is made on a phallic hand, the thumb placed in the poiition which is called the "fig," and which we fhall have to defcribe a little further on. At night, the fl:erile Malay women go to this cannon and fit upon the thumb, and rub their parts with it to produce fruitfulnefs. When leaving, they make an offering of a bouquet of flowers to the "fig." It is always the fame idea of reverence to the fertilizing powers of nature, of which the garland or the bunch of flowers was an appropriate emblem. There are traces of the exifl:ence of this pradice in the middle ages. In the cafe of fome of the priapic faints mentioned above, women fought a remedy for barrennefs by kifling the end of the phallus ; fometimes they appear to have placed a part of their body naked againfl: the image of the faint, or to have fat upon it. This latter trait was perhaps too bold an adoption of the indecencies of pagan worfliip to laft long, or to be prafticed openly ; but it appears to have been more innocently reprefented by lying upon the body of the faint, or fitting upon a flione, underfl:ood to reprefent him without the prefence of the energetic member. In a corner in the church of the village of St. Fiacre, near Mouceaux in France, there is a ftone called the chair of St. Fiacre, which confers fe- cundity upon women who fit upon it ; but it is necefl^ary that nothing fliould intervene between their bare ficin and the ftone. In the church of Orcival in Auvergne, there was a pillar which


barren women kifled for the fame purpofe, and which had perhaps replaced fome lefs equivocal objecft.^ Traditions, at leaf!:, of fimilar pradlices were connedled with St. Foutin, for it appears to have been the cuftom for girls on the point of marriage to orter their lalt maiden robe to that faint. This fuperftition prevailed to fuch an extent that it became proverbial. A ftory is told of a young bride who, on the wedding night, fought to deceive her hulliand on the queftion of her previous chaftity, although, as the writer expreffes it, "fhe had long ago de- pofited the robe of her virginity on the altar of St. Foutin."^ From this form of fuperftition is faid to havearifen a vice which is underftood to prevail efpecially in nunneries — the ufe by women of artificial phalli, which appears in its origin to have been a religious ceremony. It certainly exifted at a very remote period, for it is diftindlly alluded to in the Scriptures,'^ where it is evidently con- fidered as a part of pagan worftiip. It is found at an early period of the middle ages, defcribed in the Ecclefiaftical Penitentials, with its appropriate amount of penitence. One of thefe penitential canons of the eighth century fpeaks of "a woman who, by herfelf or with the help of another woman, commits uncleannefs," for which fhe was to do penance for three years, one on bread and water; and if this uncleannefs were committed with a nun, the penance was increafed to feven years, two only on bread and water.*

1 Dulaure relates that one day a villager's wife entering this church, and finding only a burly canon in it, aflced him earnestly, •' Where is the pillar which makes women fruitful ? " " I," faid the canon, " I am the pillar."

2 " Sponfa quasdam ruRica quae jam in finu Divi Futini virginitatis fus przetextam depofuerat." Faceti^ Facetiarum, p. 277. Thefes inaugurales de Virginihus.

3 Ezekiel, xvi, i 7. Within a few years there has been a confiderable manufadure of thefe objefts in Paris, and it was underllood that they were chiefly exported to Italy, where they were fold in the nunneries.

^ Mulier qualicumque molimine aut per fcipfan aut cum altera fornicans tres


Another Penitential of an early date provides for the cafe in which both the women who participated in this ad fhould be nuns ;^ and Burchardus, bifhop of Worms, one of the moft celebrated autho- rities on such fubjefts, defcribes the instrument and ufe of it in greater detail.^ The pradice had evidently loft its religious cha- racter and degenerated into a mere indulgence of the paffions.

Antwerp has been defcribed as the Lampfacus of Belgium, and Priapus was, down to a comparatively modern period, its patron faint, under the name of Ters, a word the derivation of which ap- pears to be unknown, but which was identical in meaning with the Greek ^/z^/A^j and the l.Rtm fafcinum. John Goropius Becan, who publiftied a learned treatife on the antiquities of Antwerp in the middle of the fixteenth century, informs us how much this Ters was reverenced in his time by the Antwerpians,efpecially by the women, who invoked it on every occafion when they were taken by fur- prife or fudden fear.^ He ftates that "if they let fall by accident a veffel of earthenware, or ftumbled, or if any unexpected accident caufed them vexation, even the moft refpectable women called aloud

annos poeniteat, unum ex his pane et aqua. Cum fanftimoniali per machinam fornicans, annos feptem poeniteat, duos ex his in pane et aqua. Colkaio Antiqu. Canon. Panit. ap. Martene et Durand, Thefaurus Anecdotorum, iv, 52.

1 Mulier qualicumque molimine aut feipfam polluens, aut cum altera fornicans quatuor annos. Sanftimonialis foemina cum fanftimoniali per machinamentum pol- luta, feptem annos. MS. Pcenitent. quoted in Ducange, fub. v. Machinamentum.

2 Fecifti quod quaedam mulieres facere folent, ut faceres quoddam molimen aut machinamentum in modum virilis membri, ad menfuram tus voluntatis, et illud loco verendorum tuorum, aut alterius, cum aliquibus ligaturis colligares, et fornica- tionem faceres cum aliis mulierculis, vel alise eodem inftrumento five alio tecum ?

Si fecifti, quinque annos per legitimas ferias poeniteas. Fecifti quod qusdam

mulieres facere folent, ut jam fupradidlo molimine, vel alio aliquo machinamento, tu ipfa in te folam faceres fornicationem ? Si fecifti, unum annum per legitimas ferias poeniteas. Burchardi Pcenit. lib. xix, p. 277, 8vo. ed. The holy bifliop appears to have been very intimately acquainted with the whole proceeding.

3 Johannis Goropii Becani Origines Antwerpiana, 1569, lib. i, pp. 26, loi.



for the prote(5lion of Priapus under this ohfcenc name." Goropius Becanus adds that there was in his time, over the door of a houfe adjoining the prifon, a ftatue which had been furniHied with a large phallus, then worn away or broken off. Among other writers who mention this ftatueis Abraham Goinitz, whopub- lifhed an account of his travels in France and Belgium, in 163 i,' and he informs us that it was a carving in ftone, about a foot high, with its arms raifed up, and its legs fpread out, and that the phallus had been entirely worn out by the women, who had been in the habit of fcraping it and making a potion of the duft which they drank as a prefervative againft barrennefs. Goinitz further tells us that a figure of Priapus was placed over the entrance gate to the enclofure of the temple of St. Walburgis at Antwerp, which fome antiquaries imagined to have been built on the fite of a temple dedicated to that deity. It appears from thefe writers that, at certain times, the women of Antwerp decorated the phalli of thefe figures with garlands.

The ufe of priapic figures as amulets, to be carried on the perfon as prefervatives againft the evil eye and other noxious influences, which we have fpoken of as fo common among the Romans, was certainly continued through the middle ages, and, as we fliall fee prefently, has not entirely difappeared. It was natural enough to believe that if this figure were falutary when merely looked upon, it muft be much more fo when carried conftantly on the perfon. The Romans gave the VlZTCl^ fafcinum^ in old Frenchy>/«^, to the phallic amulet, as well as to the fame figure under other circumftances. It is an objed of which we could hardly expedl to find dired: mention in mediaeval writers, but we meet with examples of the objedt itfelf, ufually made of lead (a proof of its popular charadler), and ranging in date perhaps from the fourteenth to the earlier part of the

^ Golnitzii Itinerarium BeigUo-Gallicum, p. 52.



fixteenth century. As we owe our knowledge of thefe phallic amulets almoft entirely to one collector, M. Forgeais of Paris, who obtained them chiefly from one fource — the river Seine, our prefent acquaintance with them may be confidered as very limited, and we have every reafon for believing that they had been in ufe during the earlier period. We can only illufl:rate this part of the fubjeft by defcribing a few of thefe mediaeval phallic amulets, which are preferved in fome private colle6lions ; and we will firfl: call attention to a feries of objefts, the real purpofe of which appears to be very obfcure. They are fmall leaden tokens or medalets, bearing on the obverfe the figure of the male or female organ, and on the reverfe a crofs, a curious intimation of the adoption of the worfhip of the generative powers among Chriftians. Thefe leaden tokens, found in the river Seine, were firft collected and made known to antiquaries by M. Forgeais, who publifhed examples of them in his work on the leaden figures found in that river.^ We give five examples of the medals of each fex, obverfe and reverfe.^ It will be feen that the phalli on thefe tokens are nearly all furnifhed with wings ; one has a bird's legs and claws ; and on another there is an evident intention to reprefent a bell fufpended to the neck. Thefe charaderiftics fhow either a very difliind: tradition of the forms of the Roman phallic ornament, or an imitation of examples of Roman phalli then exifliing — poffibly the latter. But this is not neceflary, for the bells borne by two examples, given in our next plate, and alfo taken from the collection of M. Forgeais are mediaeval, and not Roman bells, though thefe alfo reprefent well-known ancient forms of treating the fubject. In the firfl:,^ a female is riding upon the phallus, which has men's legs,

1 Notice fur des Plombs Hiftories trouves dans la Seine, et recueillis par Arthur Forgeais. 8vo, Paris, 1858.

2 See our Plate xxxiii. 3 Plate xxxiv. Fig. i.


and is held by a bridle. This figure was evidently intended to be attached to the drefs as a brooch, for the pin which fixed it ftill remains on the back. Two other examples^ prefent figures of winged phalli, one with a bell, and the other with the ring remaining from which thebellhasnodoubtbeen broken. One of thefe has the dog's legs. A fourth example'- reprefents an enormous phallus attached to themiddleofa fmall num. In another,'^ which was evidently intended for fufpenfion, probably at the neck, the organs of the two fexes are joined together. Three other leaden fiures,^apparently amulets, which were in the Forgeais colledion, offer a very peculiar variety of form, reprefenting a figure, which we might fuppofe to be a male by its attributes, though it has a very feminine look, and wears the robe and hood of a woman. Its peculiarity confifts in having a phallus before and behind. We have on the fame plate' a ftill more remarkable example ofthe combination ofthecrofs with the emblems of the worfhip of which we are treating, in an objedl found at San Agata di Goti, near Naples, which was formerly in the Beref- ford Fletcher coUeftion, and is now in that of Ambrofe Rufchen- berger, Efq., of Bofton, U. S. It is 2icrux anfata, formed by four phalli, with a circle of female organs round the centre; and appears by the loop to have been intended for fufpenfion. As this crofs is of gold, it had no doubt been made for fome perfonage of rank, poftibly an ecclefiaftic; and we can hardly help fufpeding that it had fome conneftion with priapic ceremonies or feftivities. The laft figure on the fame plate is alfo taken from the colledion of M. Forgeais.^ From the monkifh cowl and the cord round the body, we may perhaps take it for a fatire upon the friars, fome of whom wore no breeches, and they were all charged with being great cor- rupters of female morals.

' Plate XXXIV, Figs. 2 and 3. ^ Plate xxxiv. Fig. 4.

3 Plate XXXIV, Fig. 5. Plate xxxv. Figs, i, 2, and 3.

5 Plate xxxv. Fig. 4. "^ Plate xxxv. Fig. 5.


In Italy we can trace the continuous ufe of thefe phallic amulets down to the prefent time much more diftinftly than in our more Weftern countries. There they are ftill in very common ufe, and we give two examples^ of bronze amulets of this defcription, which are commonly fold in Naples at the prefent day for a carlo, equiva- lent to fourpence in Englifh money, each. One of them, it will be feen, is encircled by a ferpent. So important are thefe amulets confidered for the perfonal fafety of thofe who poffefs them, that there is hardly a peafant who is without one, which he ufually carries in his waiftcoat pocket.

There was another, and lefs openly apparent, form of the phallus, which has lafted as an amulet during almoft innumerable ages. The ancients had two forms of what antiquaries have named the phallic hand, one in which the middle finger was extended at length, and the thumb and other fingers doubled up, while in the other the whole hand was clofed, but the thumb was paffed between the firft and middle fingers. The firfl: of thefe forms appears to have been the more ancient, and is understood to have been in- tended to reprefent, by the extended middle finger, the membrum virile^ and by the bent fingers on each fide the tefl:icles. Hence the middle finger of the hand was called by the Romans, digitus impudicus, or infamis. It was called by the Greeks Karairvr^oiv, which had fomewhat the fame meaning as the Latin word, except that it had reference efpecially to degrading prad:ices, which were then lefs concealed than in modern times. To Ihow the hand in this form was exprefled in Greek by the word aKifj,a\t^€Lv, and was confidered as a mofl: contemptuous infult, becaufe it was under- ftood to intimate that the perfon to whom it was addrefi"ed was addicted to unnatural vice. This was the meaning alfo given to it

1 Plate XXXVI, Figs, i and 2.


by the Romans, as we learn from the hrft lines of an epigram of

Martial: —

♦* Rideto inultum, qui te, Sextille, ciiu-cdum Dixerit, et digiturn porrigito medium.^'

Martial, Ep. ii, 28.

Neverthelefs, this gefture of the hand was looked upon at an early period as an amulet againft magical influences, and, formed of different materials, it was carried on the perfon in the fame manner as the phallus. It is not an uncommon objed: among Roman an- tiquities, and was adopted by the Gnoftics as one of their fymbolical images. The fecond of thefe forms of the phallic hand, the inten- tion of which is eafily feen (the thumb forming the phallus), was alfo well known among the Romans, and is found made ot various material, fuch as bronze, coral, lapis lazuli, and chryftal, of a fize which was evidently intended to be fufpended to the neck or to fome other part of the perfon. In the Mufee Secret at Naples, there are examples of fuch amulets, in the fhape of two arms joined at the elbow, one terminating in the head of a phallus, the other having a hand arranged in the form juft defcribed, which feem to have been intended for pendents to ladies' ears. This gefture of the hand appears to have been called at a later period of Latin, though we have no knowledge of the date at which this ufe of the word began,/f«j-, a fig. Ficus being a word in the feminine gen- der, appears to have fallen in the popular language into the more common form of feminine nouns,7?crt, out of which arofe the Italian Jica (now replaced hy Jico), the Spanifti higa, and the French figue. Florio, who gives the word/c^, a fig, fays that it was alfo ufed in the fenfe of "a woman's quaint," fo that it may perhaps be clafl'ed with one or two other fruits, fuch as the pomegranate and the apricot, to which a fimilar erotic meaning was given. ^ The form, under

1 See before, p. 1 36. Among the Romans, the fig was confidered as a fruit confecrated to Priapus, on account, it is faid, of its produdivenefs.


this name, was preferved through the middle ages, efpecially in the South of Europe, where Roman traditions were ftrongeft,both as an amulet and as an infulting geftture. The Italian called this gefture fare la fie a ^ to make or do the fig to any one; the Spaniard, dar una higa^ to give a fig ; and the Frenchman, like the lta.\\a.n, /aire lafigue. We can trace this phrafe back to the thirteenth century at leaft. In the judicial proceedings againft the Templars in Paris in 1309, one of the brethren of the Order was afked, jokingly, in his examination, becaufe he was rather loofe and flippant in his replies, " if he had been ordered by the faid receptor (the officer of the Templars who admitted the new candidate) to make with his fingers the fig at the crucifix." ^ Here the word ufed is the corred: Y.iiXAnficus ; and it is the fame in the plural, in a document of the year 1449, in which an individual is faid to have made figs with both hands at another.^ This phrafe appears to have been introduced into the Englifii language in the time of Elizabeth, and to have been taken from the Spaniards, with whom our relations were then intimate. This we affume from the circumfl:ance that the Englifii phrafe was " to give the fig " [dar la higa)'^ and that the writers of the Elizabethan age call it " the fig of Spain." Thus, " ancient " Pifl:ol, in Shakefpeare : —

    • A figo for thy friendfhip ! —

The fig of Spain." Henry V, iii. 6.

^ Item, cum prEediftus teftis videretur efl'e valde facilis et procax ad loquendum, et in pluribus diftis fuis non eflet ftabilis, fed quafi varians et vacilans, fuit interro- gatus fi fuit ei prsceptum a difto receptore quod cum digitis manus {w£ faceret ficuni Crucifixo, quando ipfum videret, et fi fuit ei di(^um quod hoc eflet de punftis ordinis, refpondit quod nunquam audivit loqui de hoc. Michelet, Proces des Templiers, Tome i, p. 255, 410. Paris, 1841.

2 Ambabus manibus fecit ficus didlo Sermes. MS. quoted in Ducange, fub v. Ficha.

3 *< Behold next I fee contempt, giving me the fco.'" Wit's Mifery, quoted in Nares, v. Fico.


The phrale has been preferved in all thefe countries down to modern times and we ftill fay in Englifh, "a fig for anybody," or" for any- thing," not meaning that we eftimate them at no more than the value of a fig, but that we throw at them that contempt which was intimated by fhowing them the phallic hand, and which the Greeks, as ftated above, called (TKL\ia\it,^Lv. The form of fhowing con- tempt which was called the fig is ftill well known among the lower clafTes of fociety in England, and it is preferved in moft of the countries of Weftern Europe. In Baretti's Spanifh Dicftionary, which belongs to the commencement of the prefent century, we find the word higa interpreted as "A manner of fcofiing at people, which confifts in fhowing the thumb between the firft and fecond finger, clofing the fift, and pointing at the perfon to whom we want to give this hateful mark of contempt." Baretti alfo gives as ftill in ufe the original meaning of the word, " ///g-^, a little hand made of jet, which they hang about children to keep them from evil eyes ; a fuperftitious cuftom." The ufe of this amulet is ftill common in Italy, and efpecially in Naples and Sicily ; it has an advantage over the mere form of the phallus, that when the artificial /^^ is not prefent, an individual, who finds or believes himfelf in fudden danger, can make the amulet with his own fingers. So profound is the belief of its efficacy in Italy, that it is com- monly believed and reported there that, at the battle of Solferino, the king of Italy held his hand in his pocket with this arrange- ment of the fingers as a protedion againft the fliots of the enemy. There were perfonages conneded with the worfhip of Priapus who appear to have been common to the Romans under and before the empire, and to the foreign races who fettled upon its ruins. The Teutonic race believed in a fpiritual being who in- habited the woods, and who was called in old German /rr^/. His charader was more general than that of a mere habitant of the woods, for it anfwered to the Englifh hobgoblin, or to the Irifti


cluricaune. The fcrat was the fpirit of the woods, under which charad:er he was fometimes called a waltfcrat, and of the fields, and alfo of the houfehold, the domeftic fpirit, the ghoft haunting the houfe. His image was probably looked upon as an amulet, a pro- tedion to the houfe, as an old German vocabulary of the year 1482, explainsy<r-^r^///«, little fcrats, by the Latin word penates. The lafcivious character of this fpirit, if it wanted more dired; evidence, is implied by the fadl that/m//^, in Anglo-Saxon, and Jcrat^ in old Englifh, meant a hermaphrodite. Accordingly, the mediaeval vocabularies explainy^rr^/ by Latin equivalents, which all indicate companions or emanations of Priapus, and in fadl, Priapus himfelf Ifidore gives the name of Piloft^ or hairy men, and tells us that they were called in Greek, Panitae (apparently an error for Ephialtae), and in Latin, Incubi and Inibi, the latter word derived from the verb inire, and applied to them on account of their inter- courfe with animals.^ They were in fad; the fauns and fatyrs of antiquity, haunted like them the wild woods, and were charaderized by the fame petulance towards the other fex.^ Woe to the modefty of maiden or woman who ventured incautioufly into their haunts. As Incubi,, they vifited the houfe by night, and violated the perfons of the females, and fome of the moft celebrated heroes of early mediaeval romances, fuch as Merlin, were thus the children of incubi. They were known at an early period in Gaul by the name of Dufii,^ from which, as the church taught that all thefe

1 Pilofi, qui Grasce Panits, Latine Incubi, appellantur, five Inivi, ab ineundo paffim cum animalibus ; unde et Incubi dicuntur ab incumbendo, hoc eft, ftuprando. Ifidori EtymoL, lib. viii, c. 9.

2 Saepe etiam improbi exiftunt, etiam mulieribus, et earum peragunt concubitum. Ifidor. ib.

3 Et quofdam daemones quos Dufios Galli nuncupant, banc affidue immunditiam et tentare et efficere plures talesque afleverant, ut hoc negare impudentias videatur. Auguftin. De Civitate Dei, lib. xv, c 23. Conf. Ifidor., loc. cit.


mythic perfonages were devils, we derive our modern word Deuce^ ufed in fuch phrafes as "the Deuce take you!" The term ficarii was alfo applied to them in medi.Tval Latin, either from the meaning of the word ficus^ mentioned before,^ or becaufe they were fond of figs. Moft of thefe Latin fynonyms are given in the Anglo-Saxon vocabulary of Alfric, and are interpreted as meaning "evil men, fpirits of the woods, evil beings."^ One of the old commentators on the Scriptures defcribes thefe fpirits of the woods as "monfters in the femblance of men, whofe form begins with the human fhape and ends in the extremity of a beaft."'^ They were, in faft, half man, half goat, and were identical with a clafs of hobgoblins, who at a rather later period were well known in Kngland by the popular name of Robin Goodfellows, whofe Priapic cha- rader is fufficiently proved by the pidures of them attached to feme of our early printed ballads, of which we give facfimiles. The firft' is a figure of Robin Goodfellow, which forms the illuftration to a very popular ballad of the earlier part of the feventeenth cen- tury, entitled "The mad merry Pranks of Robin Goodfellow;" he is reprefented party-coloured, and with the priapic attribute. The next^ is a fecond illuftration of the fame ballad, in which Robin Goodfellow is reprefented as Priapus, goat-ftiaped, with his attributes ftill more ftrongly pronounced, and furrounded by a circle of his worftiippers dancing about him. Reappears here in the character

1 See before, p. 149.

2 Satiri, vel fauni, vel fehni (for obfcceni), velfauni ficarii, unfxle men, wude- wafan, unfaele wihta. Wright's Volume of Vocabularies, p. 17. Sec, for further illuftration of this fubjeft, Grimm's Deutfche M^thologie, p. 272 ct feq.

3 Pilofi, monflra iunt ad fimilitudinem hominum, quorum forma ab humana effigie incipit, fed beftiali extremitate terminatur, vel funt djemoncs incubones, vel fatyri, vel homines filveftres. Mamotreftus in Ifaiam, xiii. 21.

4 See Plate xxxvi. Fig. 5. From a copy of the black-letter ballad in the library of the Britifh Mufcum.

s Plate xxxvii. Fig. 2. From the fame ballad.




afliimed by the demon at the fabbath of the witches, of which we fhall have to fpeak a little further on. The Romifh Church created great confufion in all thefe popular fuperftitions by confidering the mythic perfons with whom they were conneded as fo many devils; and one of thefe Priapic demons is figured in a cut which feems to have been a favourite one, and is often repeated as an illuftration of the broadfide ballads of the age of James I. and Charles 1/ It is Priapus reduced to his loweft ftep of degradation.

Befides the invocations addrefled individually to Priapus, or to the generative powers, the ancients had eftablished great feflivals in their honour, which were remarkable for their licentious gaiety, and in which the image of the phallus was carried openly and in triumph. Thefe feftivities were efpecially celebrated among the rural population, and they were held chiefly during the fummer months. The preparatory labours of the agriculturifl: were over, and people had leifure to welcome with joyfulnefs the adivity of nature's reprodu6live powers, which was in due time to bring their fruits. Among the mofl: celebrated of thefe fefliivals were the Liberalia, which were held on the 17th of March. A monfl:rous phallus was carried in proceflion in a car, and its worfliippers indulged loudly and openly in obfcene fongs, converfation, and attitudes, and when it halted, the mofl: refpeftable of the matrons ceremoniously crowned the head of the phallus with a garland. The Bacchanalia, reprefenting the Dionyfia of the Greeks, were celebrated in the latter part of Oftober, when the harvefl: was completed, and were attended with much the fame ceremonies as the Liberalia. The phallus was fimilarly carried in proceflion, and crowned, and, as in the Liberalia, the feftivities being carried on into the night, as the celebrators became heated with wine, they degenerated into the extreme of licentioufnefs, in which people

1 Plate xxxvn. Fig. i. From two black-letter ballads in the Britifh Mufeum, one entitled, " A warning for all Lewd Liters," the other, *'A ftrange and true News from Weftmoreland."


indulged without a hlufl-i in the moft imfamous vices. The feftival of Venus was celebrated towards the beginning of April, and in it the phallus was again carried in its car, and led in proceflion by the Roman ladies to the temple of Venus outfide the Colline gate, and there prefented by them to the fexual parts of the goddefs. This part of thefcene is reprefented in a well-known intaglio, which has been publifhed in feveral works on antiquities. At the clofe of the month laft mentioned came the Floralia, which, if poffible, excelled all the others in licence. Aufonius, in whofe time (the latter half of the fourth century) the Floralia were ftill in full force, fpeaks of their lafcivioufnefs —

Necnon lafcivi Floralia laeta theatri,

Quce fpeftare volunt qui voluifle negant.

Aufonii Eclog. de Feriis Rom ants.

Theioofe women of the town and its neighbourhood, called together by the foundingof horns, mixed with the multitude in perfeft naked- nefs, and excited their palTions with obfcene motions and language, until the feftival ended in a fcene of mad revelry, in which all reftraint was laid afide. Juvenal defcribes a Roman dame of very depraved manners as —

Digniflima prorfus

Florali matrona tuba.

Juvenalis Sat. vi, 1. 249.

Thefe fcenes of unbounded licence and depravity, deeply rooted in people's minds by long eftablifhed cuftoms, caufed fo little public fcandal, that it is related of Cato the younger that, when he was prefent at the celebration of the Floralia, inftead of fliowing any difapproval of them, he retired, that his well-known gravity might be no reftraint upon them, becaufe the multitude manifefted lome hefitation in ftripping the women naked in the prefence of a man fo celebrated for his modefty.^ The feftivals more fpecially dedi-

1 Catonem, inquam, ilium, quo fedente populus negatur permififle fibi poftulare Florales jocos nudandarum meretricura. Senecae Epiji. xcvii.


cated to Priapus, the Priapeia, were attended with fimilar cere- monies and fimilarly licentious orgies. Their forms and charac- teriftics are better known, becaufe they are fo frequently repre- fented to us as the fubjefts of works of Roman art. The Romans had other feftivals of fimilar charadler, but of lefs importance, fome of which were of a more private character, and fome were celebrated in ftrid: privacy. Such were the rites of the Bona Dea, eftablifhed among the Roman matrons in the time of the re- public, the diforders of which are defcribed in fuch glowing lan- guage by the fatirift Juvenal, in his enumeration of the vices of the Roman women : —

Nota Bons fecreta Dese, quum tibia lumbos

Incitat, et cornu pariter vinoque feruntur

Attonitae, crinemque rotant, ululantque Priapi

Maenades. O quantus tunc illis mentibus ardor

Concubitus! quae vox faltante libidine! quantus

Ille meri veteris per crura madentia torrens!

Lenonum ancillas pofita Saufeia corona

Provocat, et tollit pendentis prsemia coxae.

Ipfa Medullinge fluftum criffantis adorat.

Palmam inter dominas virtus natalibus aequat.

Nil ibi per ludum fimulabitur : omnia fient

Ad verum, quibus incendi jam frigidus sevo

Laomedontiades et Neftoris hernia poffit.

Tunc prurigo morae impatiens, tunc femina fimplex,

Et toto pariter repetitus clamor ab antro :

Jam fas eft : admitte viros !

Juvenalis Sat. vi, 1. 314.

Among the Teutonic, as well as among moft other peoples, fimilar fefl:ivals appear to have been celebrated during the fummer months ; and, as they arofe out of the fame feelings, they no doubt prefented the fame general forms. The principal popular fefl:ivals of the fummer during the middle ages occurred in the months of April, May, and June, and comprifed Eafl:er, May-day, and the feaft of the fummer folftice. All thefe appear to have been


originally accompanied with the fame phallic worfhip which formed the principal charafteriftic of the great Roman feftivals ; and, in fadljthefe are exadly thofe popular inftitutions and traits of popular manners which were moft likely to outlive, alfo without any material change, the overthrow of the Roman empire by the barbarians. Although, at the time when we become intimately acquainted with thefe feftivals, moft of the prominent marks of their phallic cha- racter had been abandoned and forgotten, yet we meet during the interval with fcattered indications which leave no room to doubt of their former exiftence. It will be interefting to examine into fome of thefe points, and to ftiow the influence they exerted on medieval fociety.

The firft of the three great feftivals juft mentioned was purely Anglo-Saxon and Teutonic ; but it appears in the firft place to have been identified with the Roman Liberalia, and it was further tranf- formed by the Catholic church into one of the great Chriftian reli- gious feafts. In the primitive Teutonic mythology there was a female deity named, in Old German, OJlara, and, in Anglo-Saxon, Eajlre, or Eojlre, but all we know of her is the fimple ftatement of our father of hiftory, Bede, that her feftival was celebrated by the ancient Saxons in the month of April, from which circumftance, that month was named by the Anglo-Saxons Eajler-monath, or Eojler-monath^ and that the name of the goddefs had been fubfe- quently given to the Pafchal time, with which it was identical.' The name of this goddefs was given to the fame month by the old Germans and by the Franks, fo that ftie muft have been one of the moft highly honoured of the Teutonic deities, and her feftval muft

' Antiqui autem Anglorum populi . . . Eollurmonath, qui nunc pafchalis menfis interpretatur, quondam a dca illorum qu;e Eoilre vocabatur, et cui in illo fella cele- brabant, nomcn habuit; a cujus nomine nunc paichale tempus cognominant, conlueto antiquie oblervationis vocabulo gaudia novie lolennitatis vocantes. Bedie De Tem- porum Ratione, cap. xv.


have been a very important one, and deeply implanted in the popular feelings, or the church would not have fought to identify it with one of the greateft Chriftian festivals of the year. It is underftood that the Romans confidered this month as dedicated to Venus, no doubt becaufe it was that in which the productive power of nature began to be vifibly developed. When the Pagan feftival was adopted by the church, it became a moveable feaft inftead of being fixed to the month of April. Among other objedts offered to the goddefs at this time were cakes, made no doubt of fine flour, but of their form we are ignorant. The Chrif- tians, when they feized upon the Eaflier feftival, gave them the form of a bun, which, indeed, was at that time the ordinary form of bread ; and to proteft themfelves, and thofe who eat them, from any enchant- ment, or other evil influences which might arife from their former heathen charad:er, they marked them with the Chriftian fymbol — the crofs. Hence were derived the cakes we ftill eat at Eafter under the name of hot-crofs-buns, and the fuperftitious feelings attached to them, for multitudes of people ftill believe that if they failed to eat a hot-crofs-bun on Good-Friday they would be unlucky all the reft of the year. But there is fome reafon for believing that, at leaft in fome parts, the Eafter-cakcs had originally a different form — that of the phallus. Such at leaft appears to have been the cafe in France, where the cuftom ftill exifts. In Saintonge, in the neighbourhood of La Rochelle, fmall cakes, baked in the form of a phallus, are made as offerings at Eafter, and are carried and pre- fented from houfe to houfe ; and we have been informed thatfimilar pra6tices exift in fome other places. When Dulaure wrote, the feftival of Palm Sunday, in the town of Saintes, was called th.^. fete des pmneSy pinne being a. popular and rather vulgar word for the membrum virile. At this fete the women and children carried in the procefTion, at the end of their palm branches, a phallus made of bread, which they called undifguifedly spinney and which, having


been bleft by the prieft, the women carefully preferved during the following year as an amulet. A fimilar practice exifted at St. Jean- d'Angcly, where fmall cakes, made in the form of the phallus, and nAn\c6.fateux, were carried in the procefTion of the Fete-Dieu, or Corpus Chrifti.' Shortly before the time when Dulaure wrote, this pradice was fuppreffed by a new fous-prcfet, M. Maillard. The cuftom of making cakes in the form of the fexual members, male and female, dates from a remote antiquity and was common among the Romans. Martial made a phallus of bread (Pr/rt/)«jy/%/«^/^j) the fubjecft of an epigram of two lines : —

Si vis efTe fatur, noftrum potes efle priapum : Ipfe licet rodas inguina, purus eris.

Martial, lib. xiv, cp. 69.

The fame writer fpeaks of the image of a female organ made of the fame material in another of his epigrams, to explain which, it is only neceflary to ftate that thefe images were compofed of the finefl: wheaten flour [ftligo) : —

Pauper amicitias cum fis, Lupe, non es amicae ;

Et queritur de te mentula lola nihil.

Ilia filigineis pinguefcit adultera cunnis ;

Convivam pafcit nigra farina tuum.

Martial, lib. ix, ep. 3.

This cuftom appears to have been preferved from the Romans through the middle ages, and may be traced diftindly as far back as the fourteenth or fifteenth century. We are informed that in feme of the earlier inedited French books on cookery, receipts are given for making cakes in thefe obfcene forms, which are named without any concealment ; and the writer on this fubjed, who wrote inthefixteenth century, Johannes Bruerinus Campegius, defcribing the different forms in which cakes were then made, enumerates thofe

' Dulaure, Hiftoire Abregce des Different Cultes, vol. ii, p. 285. Second Edition. It was priuted in 1825.


of the fecret members of both fexes, a proof, he fays of " the de- generacy of manners, when Chriftians themfelves can delight in obfcenities and immodeft things even among their articles of food." He adds that fome of thefe were commonly fpoken of by a grofs name, des cons Jucres} When Dulaure wrote, that is juft forty years ago, cakes of thefe forms continued to be made in various parts of France, and he informs us that thofe reprefenting the male organ were made in the Lower Limoufin, and efpecially at Brives, while fimilar images of the female organ were made at Clermont in Auvergne, and in other places. They were popularly called miches? There is another cuftom attached to Eafter, which has probably fome relation to the worfhip of which we are treating, and which feems once to have prevailed throughout England, though we believe it is now confined to Shropfhire and Chefhire. In the former county it is called heaving^ in the latter lifting. On Eafter Monday the men go about with chairs, feize the women they meet, and, placing them in the chairs, raise them up, turn them round two or three times, and then claim the right of kifting them. On Eafter Tuefday, the fame thing is done by the women to the men. This, of courfe, is only praftifed now among the lower clafl!es, except fometimes as a frolic among intimate friends. The chair appears to have been a comparatively modern addition, fince fuch articles have become more abundant. In the laft century four or five of the one fex took the viftim of the other fex by the arms and legs, and lifted her or him in that manner, and the operation was

1 Alias fingunt oblonga figura, alias fphaerica, et orbiculari, alias triangula, quad- rangulaque; quaedam ventricofae funt; quaedam pudenda muliebria, aliae virilia (fi diis placet) repraefentant; adeo degeneravere bonos mores, ut etiam Chriftianis obfccena et pudenda in cibis placeant. Sunt etenim quos cunnos faccharatos appe- litent. Jo. Bruerini Campegii De Re Cibaria, lib. vi, c. 7. — Conf. Le Grande d'Auffi, Hijloire de la Vie Privee des Fran^ais, vol. ii, p. 309.

2 Dulaure, vol. ii, pp. 255 — 257.


attended, at all events on the part of the men, with much inde- cency. The women ufually expe<5t a fmall contribution of money from the men they have lifted. More anciently, in the time of Durandus, that is, in the thirteenth century, a ftill more fingular cuftom prevailed on thefe two days. He tells us that in many countries, on the Eafter Monday, it was the rule for the wives to beat their hufliands, and that on the Tuefday the hufbands beat their wives.^ Brand, in his Popular Antiquities., tells us that in the city of Durham, in his time, it was the cuftom for the men, on the one day, to take off the women's ftioes, which the latter were obliged to purchafe back, and that on the other day the women did the fame to the men.

In mediaeval poetry and romance, the month of May was cele- brated above all others as that confecrated to Love, which feemed to pervade all nature, and to invite mankind to partake in the general enjoyment. Hence, among nearly all peoples, its approach was celebrated with feftivities, in which, under various forms, wor- fhip was paid to Nature's reprodudlivenefs. The Romans wel- comed the approach of May with their Floralia, a feftival we have already defcribed as remarkable for licentioufnefs ; and there can- not be a doubt that our Teutonic forefathers had also their feftival of the feafon long before they became acquainted with the Romans. Yet much of the media:val celebration of May-day, efpecially in the South, appears to have been derived from the Floralia of the latter people. As in the Floralia, the arrival of the feftival was announced by the founding of horns during the preceding night, and no fooner had midnight arrived than the youth of both fexes proceeded in couples to the woods to gather branches and make garlands, with which they were to return juft at funrife for the purpofe of decora-

1 In plerifque etiam regionibus mulieres fecunda die port Pafcham verberant maritos fuos, die vero tertia uxores fuas. Durandus, Rationale, lib. vi, c. 86 — 89. By fecunda die pojl Pafcham, he no doubt means Barter Monday.



ting the doors of their houfes. In England the grand feature of the day was the Maypole. This maypole was the ftem of a tall young tree cut down for the occafion, painted of various colours, and carried in joyous proceffion, with minftrels playing before, until it reached the village green, or the open fpace in the middle of a town, where it was ufually fet up. It was there decked with garlands and flowers, the lads and girls danced round it, and people indulged in all forts of riotous enjoyments. All this is well de- fcribed by a Puritan writer of the reign of Queen Elizabeth — Philip Stubbes — who fays that, " againfl: Maie," " every pariflie, towne, and village aflemble themfelves together, bothe men, women, and children, olde and yong, even all indifferently ; and either goyng all together, or devidyng themfelves into companies, they goe fome to the woodes andgroves, fome to thehillesand mountaines,fometo one place, fome to another, where they fpende all the night inpleafant pafl;ymes, and in the mornyng thei returne, bryngyng with them birch bowes and braunches of trees to deck their afl^emblies withall, .... But their cheefefl; Jewell thei bryng from thence is their Maie pole, whiche thei bryng home with greate veneration, as thus : Thei have twentie or fourtie yoke of oxen, every oxe havyng a fweete nofegaie of flowers placed on the tippe of his homes, and thefe oxen drawe home this Maie poole (this fl:inckyng idoll rather), whiche is covered all over with flowers and hearbes, bounde rounde aboute with fl:rynges, from the top to the bottome, and fometyme painted with variable colours, with twoo or three hun- dred men, women, and children followyng it, with greate devotion. And thus beyng reared up, with handekerchiefes and flagges fl:ream- yng on the toppe, thei fl:rawe the grounde aboute, binde greene boughes about it, fett up fommer haules, bowers, and arbours hard by it. And then fall thei to banquet and feafl:, to leape and daunce aboute it, as the heathen people did, at the dedication of


their idolles, whereof this is a perfedl patterne, or rafher the thyng itfelfV'^

The Puritans were deeply imprefled with the belief that the maypole was a fubftantial relic of Paganifm; and they were no doubt right. There appears to be reafon fufficient for fuppofing that, at a period which cannot now be afcertained, the maypole had taken the place of the phallus. The ceremonies attending the elevation of the two objeds were identical. The fame joyous pro- ceffion in the Roman feftivals, defcribed above, conduced the phallus into the midft of the town or village, where in the fame manner it was decked with garlands, and the worfhip partook of the fame charader. We may add, too, that both feftivals were attended with the fame licentioufnefs. " I have heard it credibly reported," fays the Puritan Stubbes, "and that viva voce by menne of greate gravitie and reputation, that of fourtie, three fcore, or a hundred maides goyng to the woode over night, there have fcarcely the third part returned home again undefiled."

The day generally concluded with bonfires. Thefe reprefented the need-fire, which was intimately connected with the ancient priapic rites. Fire itfelf was an objed of worfhip, as the moft power- ful of the elements; but it was fuppofed to lofe its purity and facred charader in being propagated from one material to another, and the worfhippers fought on thefe folemn occafions to produce it in its primitive and pureft form. This was done by the rapid tridlion of two pieces of wood, attended with fuperftitious ceremonies; the pure element of fire was believed to exift in the wood, and to be thus forced out of it, and hence it was called need-fire (in Old German wo/'/^wdT, and in Anglo-Saxon, neod-fyr), meaning literally a forced fire, or fire extracted by force. Before the procefs of thus

1 Stubbes, Anatomie of Ahufes, fol. 94, 8vo. London, 1583.


extrafting the fire from the wood, it was neceflary that all the fires previoufly exifting in the village fhould be extinguifhed, and they were afterwards revived from the bonfire which had been lit from the need-fire. The whole fyftem of bonfires originated from this fuper- ftition ; they had beenadopted generally on occafionsofpopularre- joicing, and the bonfires commemorating the celebrated gunpowder plot are only particular applications of the general practice to an accidental cafe. The fuperftition of the need-fire belongs to a very remote antiquity in the Teutonic race, and exifted equally in ancient Greece. It is profcribed in the early capitularies of the Frankifh emperors of the Carlovingian dynafty.^ The univerfality of this fuperftition is proved by the circumftance that it ftill exifts in the Highlands of Scotland, efpecially in Caithnefs, where it is adopted as a protedlion for the cattle when attacked by difeafe which the Highlanders attribute to witchcraft.^ It was from the remoteft ages the cuftom to caufe cattle, and even children, to pafs acrofs the need-fire, as a protedion to them for the reft of their lives. The need-fire was kindled at Eafter, on May-day, and efpe- cially at the fummer folftice, on the eve of the feaft of St. John the Baptift, or of Midfummer-day.^

The eve of St. John was in popular fuperftition one of the moft important days of the mediaeval year. The need-fire — or the St. John's fire, as it was called — was kindled juft at midnight, the moment when the folftice was fupposed to take place, and the young people of both fexes danced round it, and, above all things,

) Sive illos facrilegos ignes quos nedfratres (I. nedfyres) vocant, five omnes quae- cumque funt paganorum obfervationes diligenter prohibeant. Karlomanni Capitulare Primum, a. d. 742, in Baluzii Capitularia Regum Francorum, col. 148. Repeated in the Capitularium Caroli Magni et Ludovici Pit, compiled a. d. 827. See Baluz., ib., col. 825.

2 Logan, The Scottijh Gael, vol. ii, p. 64, and Jamiefon's Scottijh Di£lionary, Suppl. iub. V. Neidfyre.

3 See Grimm, Deutfche Mythologie, pp. 341 — 349.


leaped over it, or rufhed through it, which was looked upon not only as a purification, but as a protection againft evil influences. It was the night when ghofts and other beings of the fpiritual world were abroad, and when witches had moft power. It was believed, even, that during this night people's fouls left the body in fleep, and wandered over the world, feparated from it. It was a night of the great meetings of the witches, and it was that in which they mixed their moft deadly poifons,and performed their moft effedive charms. It was a night efpecially favourable to divination in every form, and in which maidens fought to know their future fweet- hearts and huftiands. It was during this night, alfo, that plants poflefted their grcateft powers either for good or for evil, and that they were dug up with all due ceremonies and cautions. The more hidden virtues of plants, indeed, depended much on the time at which, and the ceremonies with which, they were gathered, and thefe latter were extremely fuperftitious, no doubt derived from the remote ages of paganifm. As ufual, the clergy applied a halt- remedy to the evil ; they forebade any rites or incantations in the gathering of medicinal herbs except by repeating the creed and the Lord's prayer.^

As already ftated, the night of St. John's, or Midfummer-eve, was that when ghofts and fpirits of all defcriptions were abroad, and when witches aflembled, and their potions, for good or for evil, and charms were made with moft efted. It was the night for popular divination, efpecially among the young maidens, who fought to know who were deftined to be their hufbands, what would be their charaders, and what their future conduct. The medicinal virtues of many plants gathered on St. John's eve, and with the due ceremonies, were tar more powerful than if gathered

1 Non licet in coUeflione herbarum medicinalium aliquas obfervationes vel incan- tationes attendere, niii tantum cum iVmbulo divino et oratione dominica, ut Deus ct Dominus noller honoretur. Burchardi Decretorum Libri, x, 20.


at other times. The moft fecret pradiices of the old popular fuper- ftitions are now moftly forgotten, but when, here and there, we meet with a few traces of them, they are of a character which leads us to believe that they belonged to a great extent to that fame worfhip of the generative powers which prevailed fo generally among all peoples. We remember that, we believe in one of the earlier editions of Mother Bunch, maidens who wifhed to know if their lovers were conftant or not were dired;ed to go out exadlly at midnight on St. John's eve, to ftrip themfelves entirely naked, and in that condition to proceed to a plant or fhrub, the name of which was given, and round it they were to form a circle and dance, repeating at the fame time certain words which they had been taught by their inftrudrefs. Having completed this ceremony, they were to gather leaves of the plant round which they had danced, which they were to carry home and place under their pillows, and what they wifhed to know would be revealed to them in their dreams. We have {&Q.n in fome of the mediaeval treatifes on the virtue of plants directions for gathering fome plants of efpe- cial importance, in which it was required that this fhould be per- formed by young girls in a fimilar ftate of complete nakednefs.

Plants and flowers were, indeed, intimately conne6ted with this worfhip. We have feen how conftantly they are introduced in the form of garlands, and they were always among the offerings to Priapus. It was the univerfal practice, in dancing round the fire on St. John's eve, to conclude by throwing various kinds of flowers and plants into it, which were confidered to be propitiatory, to avert certain evils to which people were liable during the following year. Among the plants they offered are mentioned mother-wort, vervain, and violets. It is perhaps to this connection of plants with the old priapic worfhip that we owe the popular tendency to give them names which were more or lefs obfcene, moft of which are now loft, or are fo far modified as to prefent no longer the fame idea. Thus


the well-known arum of our hedge-bottoms received the names, no doubt fuggefted by its form, of cuckoo's pintle, or prieft's pintle, or dog's pintle; and, in French, thofe of vit de chien and vit de prejfre ; in Englifh it is now abbreviated into cuckoo-pint, or, fometimes, cuckoo-point. The whole family of the orchides was diftinguifhed by a correfponding word, accompanied with various qualifications. We have in William Coles's Adam in Eden, (fol. 1659) the different names, for different varieties, of doggs- ftones, fool-ftones, fox-ftones ; in the older Heri^ai of Gerard (fol. 1597) triple ballockes, fweet ballockes, fweet cods, goat's-ftones, hare's-ftones, &c ; in P'rench, couillon de bouc (the goat was efpe- cially conne(fted with the priapic myfteries) and couille, or couillon, de chien. In French, too, as we learn from Cotgrave and the herbals, "a kind of fallet hearbe" was caWed. couille d Veveque\ the greater ftone-crop was named couille au loup\ and the fpindle-tree was known by the name of couillon de prHre. There are feveral plants which poffefs fomewhat the appearance of a rough bufh of hair. One of thefe, a fpecies of adiantum, was known even in Roman times by the name of Capillus I'eneris, and in more modern times it has been called maiden-hair, and our lady's hair. Another plant, the afplenium trichomanes, was and is alfo called popularly maiden-hair, or maiden's-hair ; and we believe that the fame name has been given to one or two other plants. There is reafon for believing that the hair implied in thefe names was that of the pubes.^ We might collect a number of other old popular names of plants of a (imilar charader with thefe juft enumerated.

In an old calendar of the Romifh church, which is often quoted

1 Fumitory was another of thefe plants, and in a vocabulary of plants in a MS. of the middle of the thirteenth century, we find its names in Latin, French, and Englifh given as follows, " Fumus terra", fumeterre, cuntehoare.'" See Wright's Volume of Vocabularies, p. 17.


in Brand's Popular Antiquities^ the feeking of plants for their hidden virtues and magical properties is efpecially noted as part of the praftices on the eve of St. John [herba diverft generis quaruntur) ; and one plant is efpecially fpecified in terms too myfterious to be eafily underftood/ Fern-feed, alfo, was a great object of fearch on this night ; for, if found and properly gathered, it was believed to pofTefs powerful magical proper- ties, and efpecially that of rendering invifible the individual who carried it upon his perfon. But the moft remarkable of all the plants connected with thefe ancient priapic fuperftitions was the mandrake [mandragora)^ a plant which has been looked upon with a fort of feeling of reverential fear at all periods, and almoft in all parts. Its Teutonic name, alrun^ or, in its more modern form, alraun, fpeaks at once of the belief in its magical qualities among that race. People looked upon it as pofleffing fome degree of animal life, and it was generally believed that, when it was drawn out of the earth, it uttered a cry, and that this cry carried certain death or madnefs to the perfon who extracted it. To efcape this danger, the remedy was to tie a ftring round it, which was to be attached to a dog, and the latter, being driven away, dragged up the root in its attempt to run off, and experienced the fatal confe- quences. The root was the important part of the plant ; it has fomewhat the form of a forked radifh, and was believed to repre- fent exadlly the human form below the waift, with, in the male and female plants, the human organs of generation diftindly devel- oped. The mandrake, when it could be obtained, was ufed in the middle ages in the place of the phallic amulet, and was carefully carried on the perfon, or preferved in the houfe. It conferred fer- tility in more fenfes than one, for it was believed that as long as you kept it locked up with your money, the latter would become

' Carduus puellarum legitur et ab eifdem centum cruces.


doubled in quantity every year; and it had at the fame time all the protedive qualities of the phallus. The Templars were accufed of worfhiping the mandrake, or mandragora, which became an obje6l of great celebrity in France during the reigns of the weak monarchs Charles VI. and Charles VII. In 1429 one Friar Richard, of the order of the Cordeliers, preached a fierce fermon againft the use of this amulet, the temporary efFed of which was fo great, that a cer- tain number of his congregation delivered up their " mandra- goires" to the preacher to be burnt.^

It appears that the people who dealt in thefe amulets helped nature to a rather confiderable extent by the means of art, and that there was a regular procefs of cooking them up. They were necefTarily aware that the roots themfelves, in their natural ftate, prefented, to fay the leaft, very imperfeftly the form which men's imagination had given to them, fo they obtained the fineft roots they could, which, when frefh from the ground, were plump and foft, and readily took any impreffion which might be given to them. They then ftuck grains of millet or barley into the parts where they wifhed to have hair, and again put it into a hole in the earth, until thefe grains had germinated and formed their roots. This procefs, it was faid, was perfected within twenty days. They then took up the mandrake again, trimmed the fibrous roots of millet or barley which ferved for hair, retouched the parts them- felves fo as to give them their form more perfe(!^ly and more per- manently, and then fold it.^

Befides thefe great and general priapic feftivals, there were doubtlefs others oflefs importance, or more local in their character, which degenerated in aftertimes into mere local ceremonies and

1 Journal a' un Bourgeois de Paris, under the year 1429.

2 See the authorities tor thefe llatements in Dulaure, pp. 254 — 256.


feftivities. This would be the cafe efpecially in cities and corpo- rate towns, where the guilds came in, to perpetuate the inftitution, and to give it gradually a modified form. Moft towns in England had once feftivals of this charadler, and at leaft three reprefentatives of them are ftill kept up, the proceflion of Lady Godiva at Coventry, the Shrewfbury ihow, and the guild feftival at Prefton in Lanca- fhire. In the firft of thefe, the lady who is fuppofed to ride naked in the proceflion probably reprefents fome feature in the ancient priapic celebration; and the ftory of the manner in which the Lady Godiva averted the anger of her hufband from the townfmen,which is certainly a mere fable, was no doubt invented to explain a fea- ture of the celebration, the real meaning of which had in courfe of time been forgotten. The pageantry of the Shrewfbury fhow appears to be fimilarly the unmeaning refledion of forms belong- ing to older and forgotten practices and principles. On the Conti- nent there were many fuch local feftivals, fuch as the feaft of fools, the feaft of afles (the afs was an animal facred to Priapus), and others, all which were adapted by the mediasval church exadly as the clergy had taken advantage of the profit to be derived from the phallic worftiip in other forms.

Theleaden tokens, or medalets, which we have already defcribed,^ feem to point evidently to the exiftence in the mi"ddle ages of fecret focieties or clubs connected with this obfcene worftiip, be- fides the public feftivals. Of thefe it can hardly be expeded that any defcription would furvive, but, if not the fad:, the belief in it is clearly eftabliftied by the eagernefs with which fuch obfcene rites were laid to the charge of moft of the mediaeval fecret focieties, whether lay clubs or religious fefts, and we know that fecret focieties abounded in the middle ages. However willing the Romifti clergy were to make profit out of the popular phallic wor-

1 See before, p. 146, and Plate xxxiii.


fhip, they were equally ready to ufe the belief in it as a means of exciting prejudice againft any feds which the church chofe to regard as religious or political heretics.

It is very evident that, in the earlier ages of the church, the converfion of the Pagans to Chriftianity was in a vaft number of cafes lefs than a half-converfion, and that the preachers of the gofpel were fatisfied by people affuming the name of Chriftians, without inquiring too clofely into the fincerity of their change, or into their pradlice. We can trace in the exprelfions of difapproval in the writings of fome of the more zealous of the ecclefiaftical writers, and in the canons of the earlier councils, the alarm created by the prevalence among Chriftians of the old popular feftivals of paganifm ; and the revival of thofe particular canons and depreca- tory remarks in the ecclefiaftical councils and writings of a later period of the middle ages ftiows that the exiftence of the evil had continued unabated. There was an African council in the year 381, from which Burchardus, who compiled his condenfation of ecclefiaftical decrees for the ufe of his own time, profeftes to derive his provifions againft " the feftivals which were held with Pagan ceremonies." We are there told that, even on the moft facred of the Chriftian commemoration days, thefe rites derived from the Pagans were introduced, and that dancing was pradifed in the open ftreets of fo infamous a character, and accompanied with fuch lafcivious language and geftures, that the modefty of refpedable females was ftiocked to a degree that prevented their attendance at the fervice in the churches on thofe days.^ It is added that

^ Illud etiam petendum, ut quoniam contra praecepta divina convivia multis in locis exercentur, quae ab errore gentili attrafta funt, ita ut nunc a paganis ad hsc celebranda cogantur, ex qua re temporibus Chrillianorum imperatorum perfecutio altera fieri occulta videatur, vetari talia jubeant, et de civitatibus et poUeflionibus impofita poena prohiberi, maxime cum etiam in natalibus beatiffimorum martyrum per nonnullas civitates et in ipfis locis facris talia committere non retbrmident, quibus


thefe Pagan ceremonies were even carried into the churches, and that many of the clergy took part in them.

It is probable, too, that when Paganifm itfelf had become an offence againft the ftate, and thofe who continued attached to it were expofed to perfecution, they embraced the name of Chriftians as a cover for the groffeft fuperftitions, and formed fefts who prac- tifed the rites of Paganifm in their fecret conventicles, but were placed by the church among the Chriftian hereiies. In fome of thefe, efpecially among thofe of an early date, the obfcene rites and principles of the phallic worfhip feem to have entered largely, for, though their opponents probably exaggerated the adlual vice car- ried on under their name, yet much of it muft have had an exift- ence in truth. It was a mixture of the licence of the vulgar Paganifm of antiquity with the wild dodrines of the latter eaftern philofophers. The older orthodox writers dwell on the details of thefe libidinous rites. Among the earlieft in date were the Adam- iani, or Adamites, who profcribed marriage, and held that the moft perfeft innocence was confiftent only with the community of women. They chofe latibula^ or caverns, for their conventicles, at which both fexes affembled together in perfect nakednefs.^ This fed; perhaps continued to exift under different forms, but it was revived among the intellectual vagaries of the fifteenth century, and continued at leaft to be much talked of till the feventeenth. The dodrine of the community of women, and the pradice of promifcuous fexual intercourfe in their meetings, were afcribed by the early Chriftian

diebus etiam, quod pudoris eft dicere, faltationes fceleratiffimas per vicos atque plateas exerceant, ut matronalis honor, et innumerabilium foeminarum pudor, devote veni- entium ad facratiflimum diem, injuriis lafcivientium appetatur, ut etiam ipfius fandl^ religionis paene fugiatur acceffus. Burchard. Decret., lib. x, c. 20, De conviviis qua fiunt ritu paganorum, ex Concil. Africano, cap. 27. See Labbsi, CoticiL, torn, ii, col. 1085.

  • Epiphanii Epifc. Conftant. Panarium verfus Hceres., vol. i, p. 459, ed Petav,


controverfialifts to feveral Teds, fuch as the followers of Florian,and of Carpocratian, who were accufed of putting out the lamps in their churches at the end of the evening fervice, and indulging in fexual intercourfe indifcriminately ;^ the Nicolaitae, who held their wives in common ; the Ebionei ; and efpecially the Gnoftics, or followers of Bafilides, and the Manichaeans. The Nicolaites held that the only way to falvation lay through frequent intercourfe between the fexes.^ Epiphanius fpeaks of a fed who facrificed a child in their fecret rites by pricking it with brazen pins, and then offering its blood.^ The Gnoftics were accufed of eating human flefh as well as of lafcivioufnefs, and they alfo are faid to have held their women in common, and taught that it was a duty to proftitute their wives to their guefts."* They knew their fellow fedarians by a fecret fign, which confifted in tickling the palm of the hand with the finger in a peculiar manner. The fign having been recog- nized, mutual confidence was eftablifhed, and the ftranger was invited to fupper ; after they had eaten their fill, the huiLand removed from the fide of his wife, and faid to her, " Go, exhibit charity to our gueft," which was the fignal for thofe further fcenes of hofpitality.^ This account is given us by St. Epiphanius, bifhop of Conftantia. We are told further of rites pradiced by the Gnoftics, which were ftill more difgufting, for they were faid, after thefe libidinous fcenes, to ofter and adminifter \.\i^Jemen virile

• In ecclefia fua poll occafum Iblis lucernis extinftis mifceri cum mulierculis. Philaftri de Harejibus Liber, c. 57.

'■^ Epiphanii Panariurn, vol. i, p. 72.

3 Epiphanius, vol. i, p. 416.

■» On the fecret worfhip and charafter of the Gnollics, fee Epiphanii Pa/iarium, vol, i, pp. 84 — 102.

^ e/c rovrov Se avfj.7roaidaavT€<;, Kal aJ? eVo? eliretv, Ta<i (pXe^wi rov Kopov ifi7r\)}aavT€^ eavTcov, et? olarpov rpiirovTaL. kol o /xev ai>j]p r/'}'? yvifaLKO<; inroycoprjcra^ (f)dcrK€i Xeycou rrj kavrov 'yvvaiKt on dvciara keywu, Troiijaov rr}V ajaTnjv fiera rov a8e\<f>ov- 01 hk raXave^ fii'y€PTe<; a\Xj]\oi<i. Epiphan. Panariurn, vol. i, p. 86.


as their facrament.^ A fimilar pradice is defcribed as exifting among women in the middle ages for the purpofe of fecuring the love of their hufbands, and was perhaps derived from the Gnoftics and Manichaeans, whofe dodrines, brought from the Eaft, appear to have fpread themfelves extenfively into Weftern Europe.^

Of thefe dodrines, however, we have no traces at leaft until the eleventh century, when a great intelledual agitation began in Weftern Europe, which brought to the surface of fociety a multi- tude of ftrange creeds and ftrange theories. The popular worftiip difplayed in the great annual feftivals, and the equally popular local fetes, urban or rural, were hardly interfered with, or any fecret focieties belonging to the old worfhip ; the mediaeval church did not confider them as herefies, and let them alone. Thus, except now and then a provifion of fome ecclefiaftical council exprefled in general terms againft fuperftitions, which was hardly heard at the time and not liftened to, they are paffed over in filence. But the moment anything under the name of herefy raifed its head, the alarm was great. Gnofticifm and Manichaeifm, which had indeed been identical, were the herefies moft hated in the Eaftern empire, and, as may be fuppofed, moft perfecuted ; and this perfe- cution was deftined to drive them weftward. In the feventh cen-

1 See details on this fubjeft in Epiphanii Panarium, ib. Conf. Praedeftinati Adverfus Hceres., lib. i, c. 46, where the fame thing is laid of the Manichaeans.

2 Guftafti de femine viri tui, ut, propter tua diabolica fafta, plus in amorem tuum exardefceret ? Si fecilli, feptem annos per legitimas ferias poenitere debes. Burchardi Decretorum lib. xix. The fame praftices appear to have exifted among the Anglo-Saxons. Thus, one of the cafes in Theodori Liher Peenitentialis, (in Thorpe's Ancie?it Lazvs a?id Inftitutes,') is, — Mulier qure femen viri fui in cibum miferit, ut inde amoris ejus plus accipiat, vii. annos poeniteat. Theod. Lih. Pcen. xvi. 30. And again, Mulier quae femen viri cum cibo fuo mifcuerit, et id fumpferit, ut mafculo carior fit, iii. annos jejunet. Ecgberti Cojifejftonale, fee. 29. Sprenger, Malleus Maleficarum, quaell. vii, tells us of witches who made men eat hien autre cbofe to fecure their love.


tiiry they became modified into a fed: which took the name of Paulicians, it is faid, from an Armenian enthufiaft named Paulus, and they feem to have ftill further provoked the hatred of the church by making themfelves, in their own interefts, the advocates of freedom of thought and of ecclefiaftical reform. If hiftory be to be believed, their Chriftian feelings cannot have been very ftrong, for, unable to refift perfecution within the empire, they retired into the territory held by the Saracens, and united with the enemies ot the Crofs in making war upon the Chriftian Greeks. Others fought refuge in the country of the Bulgarians, who had very generally embraced their do6lrines, which foon fpread thence weft- ward. In their progrefs through Germany to France they were known beft as Bulgarians, from the name of the country whence they came ; in their way through Italy they retained their name of Paulicians, corrupted in the Latin of that period of the middle ages into Populicani, Poplicani, Publicaniy &c ; and, in French, into Popelican^ Poblican^ Policien, and various other forms which it is unneceftary to enumerate. They began to caufe alarm in France at the beginning of the eleventh century, in the reign of king Robert, when, under the name of Popelicans, they had eftab- liftied themfelves in the diocefe of Orleans, in which city a council was held againft them in 1022, and thirteen individuals were condemned to be burnt. The name appears to have lafted into the thirteenth century, but the name of Bulgarians became more permanent, and, in its French form of Bolgres, Bougres, or BogreSy became the popular name for heretics in general. With thefe herefies, through the more fenfual parts of Gnofticifm and Manichaeifm, there appears to be left hardly room for doubt that the ancient phallic worftiip, probably fomewhat modified, and under the ftiadow of fecret rites, was imported into Weftern Europe ; for, if we make allowance for the willing exaggerations of religious hatred, and confequent popular prejudice, the general convidion


that thefe fedarians had rites and practices of a licentious charadler appears too ftrong to be entirely difregarded, nor does it prefent anything contrary to what we know of the ftate of mediasval fociety, or to the fafts which have already been brought forward in the prefent eflay. Thefe early fed:s appear to have profefled do6lrines rather clofely refembling modern communifm, including, like thofe of their earlier feftarian predeceffors, the community of women ; and this community naturally implies the abolition of diftindtive affinities. One of the writers againft the mediaeval heretics aflures us that there were "many profeffed Chriftians, both men and women, who feared no more to go to their fifter, or fon or daughter, or brother, or nephew or niece, or kin or relation, than to their own wife or hufband."^ They were accufed, beyond this, of indulging in unnatural vices, and this charge was fo generally believed, that the name of Bulgarus, or heretic, became equivalent with Sodomite, and hence came the modern French word bougre, and its Englifh reprefentatives.

In the courfe of the eleventh century the feftarians appeared in Italy under the name of Patarini, Paterini, or Patrini, which is faid to have been taken from an old quarter of the city of Milan named Pataria, in which they firft held their aflemblies. A contemporary Englifhman, Walter Mapes, gives us a fingular account of the Paterini and their fecret rites. Some apoftates from this herefy, he tells us, had related that, at the firft watch of night, they met in their fynagogues, clofed carefully the doors and windows, and waited in filence, until a black cat of extraordinary bignefs defcended among them by a rope, and that, as foon as they faw

1 Et haec eft caufa quare multi credentes, tarn viri quam mulieres, non timent magis ad fororem fuam, et filium five filiam, fratrem, neptem, confanguineam, et cognatam accedere, quam ad uxorem et virum proprium. Reinerus, Contra Waldenfes, in Gretferus, Scriptores contra Se^am Waldenjium, Gretferi Opera, torn, xii, p. 33.


this ftrange animal, they put out the lights, and muttering through their teeth inftead of Tinging their hymns, felt their way to this objed of their worfhip, and kiffed it, according to their feelings of humility or pride, fome on the feet, fome under the tail, and others on the genitals, after which each feized upon the neareft perfon of a different fex, and had carnal intercourfe as long as he was able. Their leaders taught them that the moft perfed degree of charity was "to do or fuffer in this manner whatever a brother or fifter might defire and afk," and hence, fays Mapes, they were called Paterini, a-patiendo} Other writers have fuggefted a different derivation, but the one firft given appears to be that moft generally accepted. The different feds or congregations in Italy and the fouth, indeed, appear generally to have taken their names from the towns in which they had their feats or head-quarters. Thus, thofe who were feated at Bagnols, in the department of the Gard, in the fouth of France, were called by the Latin writers Bagnolenfes; the fame writers give the name of Concordenfes, or Concorezenfes, to the heretics of Concordia in Lombardy ; and the city of Albi, now the capital of the department of the Tarn, gave its name to the fed of the Albigenfes, or Albigeois, the moft extenfive

1 Refipuerunt autem multi, reverfique ad fidem enarrant quod circa primam nodlis vigiliam, claufis eorum januis, hofliis, et feneftris, expeflantes in fingulis finagogis fuis fingulas fedeant in filentio familiae, defcenditque per funem appenfiim in medio mirae magnitudinis murelegus niger, quern cum viderint, luminibus extinftis, hymnos non decantant, non diftin(5le dicunt, fed ruminant affertis dentibus, acce- duntque ubi dominum fuum viderint palpantes, inventumque deofculantur quifque fecundum quod ampliore fervet infania humilius, quidam pedes, plurimi Tub cauda, plerique pudenda, et quafi a loco foetoris accepts liccntia pruriginis, quifque fibi proximum aut proximam arripit, commifcenturque quantum quiique ludibrium extendere prsevalet. Dicunt etiam magiftri docentque novitios caritatem efTe per- fedlam agere vel pati quod defideraverit et petierit frater aut foror, extinguere fcilicet invicem ardcntes, et a patiendo Paterini dicuntur. Mapes, De Nugis Curialium, p. 61.



of them all, which fpread over the whole of the fouth of France. A rich enthufiaft of the city of Lyons, named Waldo, who had collected his wealth by mercantile purfuits, and who lived in the twelfth cen- tury, fold his property and diftributed it among the poor, and he became the head of a fed: which profefled poverty as one of its tenets, and received from the name of its founder that ofWaldenfes or Vaudois. From their profeffion of voluntary poverty they are fometimes fpoken of by the name of Pauperes de Lugduno, the paupers of Lyons. Contemporaries fpeak of the Waldenfes as being generally poor ignorant people ; yet they fpread widely over that part of France and into the valleys of Switzerland, and became fo celebrated, that at laft nearly all the mediaeval heretics were ufually clafled under the head of Waldenfes. Ano^^her fed, ufually clafTed with the Waldenfes, were called Cathari. 1 he Nova- tians, a fedl which fprang up in the church in the third century, afTumed alfo the name of Cathari, as laying claim to extraordinary purity (/ca^apot), but there is no reafon for believing that the ancient {t&. was revived in the Cathari of the later period, or even that the two words are identical. The name of the latter fed: is often fpelt Gazari, Gazeri, Ga?ari, and Chazari ; and, as they were more efpecially a German fed, it is fupposed to have been the origin of the German words Ketzer and Ketzerie^ which became the common German terms for a heretic and herefy. It was fuggefted by Henfchenius that this name was derived from the German Katze or Ketze^ a cat, in allufion to the common report that they afTembled at night like cats, or ghofts ;^ or the cat may have been an allufion to the belief that in their fecret meetings they worfhipped that animal. This fed muft have been very ignorant and fuperftitious if it be true which fome old writers

^ Propter nofturnas coitiones, a voce Germanica caters, id eft, feles feu lemures. See Ducange, fub v. Cathari.


tell us, that they believed that the fun was a demon, and the moon a female called Heva, and that thefe two had fexual intercourfe every month. ^ Like the other heretical feds, thefe Cathari were accufed of indulging in unnatural vices, and the German words Ketzerie and Kelzer were eventually ufed to fignify fodomy and a fodomite, as well as herefy and a heretic.

The Waldenfes generally, taking all the feds which people clafs under this name, including alfo the older Bulgari and Publicani, were charged with holding fecret meetings, at which the devil appeared to them in the fhape, according to fome, of a goat, whom they worfhipped by offering the kifs in am, after which they indulged in promifcuous fexual intercourfe. Some believed that they were conveyed to thefe meetings by unearthly means. The Englifh chronicler Ralph de Coggefhall, tells a ftrange ftory of the means of locomotion poffeffed by thefe heretics. In the city of Rheims, in France, in the time of St. Louis, a handfome young woman was charged with herefy, and carried before the archbifhop, in whofeprefence fhe avowed her opinions, and confeffed that fhehad received them from a certain old woman of that city. The old woman was then arrefted, convided of being an obftinate heretic, and condemned to the ftake. When they were preparing to carry her out to the fire, fhe fuddenly turned to the judges and faid, " Do you think that you are able to burn me in your fire ? I care neither for it nor for you ! " And taking a ball of thread, fhe threw it out at a large window by which fhe was flanding, holding the end of the thread in her hands, and exclaiming, " Take it ! " [recipe). In an inflant, in the fight of all who were there, the old woman was lifted from the ground, and, following the ball of thread, was car- ried into the air nobody knew where ; and the archbifhop's officers

1 Bonacurfus, ^^ita Ha^reticornm, in D'Achery, Spicikgium, torn, i, p. 209. This book is confidered to have been written about the year 1190.


burnt the young woman in her place.^ It was the belief of moft of the old feds of this clafs, as well as of the more ancient Pagans from whom they were derived, that thofe who were fully initiated into their moft fecret myfteries became endowed with powers and faculties above thofe pofTefled by ordinary individuals. A lift of the errors of the Waldenfes, printed in the Reliquia Antiqude^ from an Englifti manufcript, enumerates among them that they met to indulge in promifcuous fexual intercourfe, and held perverfe doctrines in accordance with it; that, in fome parts, the devil appeared to them in the form of a cat, and that each kifled him under the tail ; and that in other parts they rode to the place of meeting upon a ftaff" anointed with a certain unguent, and were conveyed thither in a moment of time. The writer adds that, in the parts where he lived, thefe pradices had not been known to exift for a long time.^

Our old chroniclers exult over the fmall fuccefs which attended the eftbrts of thefe heretics from France and the South to introduce themfelves into our ifland.^ Thefe fed:s, with fecret and obfcene

1 Radulphus Cogefhalenfis, in the AmpliJJima ColleBio of Martene and Durand. On the offences with which the different fedls comprifed under the name of Wal- denfes were charged, fee Gretfer's Scrip tores contra Se£lam Waldenjium, which will be found in the twelfth volume of his works, Bonacurfus, Vita Hareticorum, in the firft volume of D'Achery's Spicilegium, and the work of a Carthufian monk in Martene and Durand, AmpliJJima Colle£lio, vol. vi, col. 57 et feq.

2 Wright and Halliwell, Reliquiae Antique, vol. i, p. 247.

Item, habent inter fe mixtum abominabile, et perverfa dogmata ad hoc apta, fed

non reperitur quod abutantur in partibus itlis a multis temporibus. Item, in aliquibus aliis partibus apparet eis daemon fub fpecie et figura cati, quem

fub Cauda figillatim ofculantur. Item, in aliis partibus fuper unum baculum certo unguento perunftum equitant,

et ad loca affignata ubi voluerint congregantur in momento dum volunt. Sed

ifta in iilis partibus non inveniuntur.

3 See, for example, Guil. Neubrigenfis, De Rebus Anglicis, lib. ii, c. 13, and Walter Mapes, de Nugis Curialium, p. 62.


rites, appear, indeed, to have found moll favour among the peoples who fpoke a dialed derived from the Latin, and this we might naturally be led to expeft, for the fadl of the prefervation of the Latin tongue is itfelf a proof of the greater force of the Roman element in the foclety, that from which thefe fecret rites appear to have been chiefly derived. It is a curious circumftance, in connec- tion with this fubjed, that the popular oaths and exclamations among the people fpeaking the languages derived from the Romans are almoft all compofed of the names of the objeds of this phallic worfliip, an entire contraft to the praftice of the Teutonic tribes — the vulgar oaths of the people fpeaking Neo-Latin dialeds are obfcene, thofe of the Germanic race are profane. We have feen how the women of Antwerp, who, though perhaps they did not fpeak the Roman dialed, appear to have been much influenced by Roman fentiments, made their appeal to their genius Ters. When a Spaniard is irritated or fuddenly excited, he exclaims, Carajo ! (the virile member) or Cojones! (the tefliicles). An Italian, under fimihir circumfl:ances, ufes the exclamation Cazzo ! (the virile member). The Frenchman apofl:rophizes the ad, Foutre I The female member, cono with the Spaniard, conno with the Italian, and con with the Frenchman, was and is ufed more generally as an ex- preflion of contempt, which is alfo the cafe with the tefl:icles, couil- lons, in French — thofe who have had experience in the old days of "diligence" travelling will remember how ufual it was for the driver, when the horfes would not go quick enough, to addrefs the leader in fuch terms as, " Z^^, donc^ vieux con! " We have no luch words ufed in this manner in the Germanic languages, with the exception, perhaps, of the German Potz ! and Potztaufend! and the Knglifli equivalent. Pox ! which lafl: is gone quite out of ufe. There was an attempt among the fafliionables of our Flizabethan age of literature, to introduce the Italian cazzo under the form of catfo, and the French /^w/rt- under that o^ foutra, but thefe were


mere affedatPons of a moment, and were fo little in accord with our national fentiments that they foon difappeared.

The earl ieft accounts of a fee!!: which held fecret meetings for celebrating obfcene rites is found in France. It appears that, early in the eleventh century, there was in the city of Orleans a fociety confifting of members of both fexes, who afTembled at certain times in a houfe there, for the purpofes which are defcribed rather fully in a document found in the cartulary of the abbey of St. Pere at Chartres. As there ftated, they went to the meeting, each carrying in the hand a lighted lamp, and they began by chaunting the names of demons in the manner of a litany, until a demon fuddenly defcended among them in the form of an animal. This was no fooner feen, than they all extinguifhed their lamps, and each man took the firft female he put his hand upon, and had fexual intercourfe with her, without regard if fhe were his mother, or his fifler, or a confecrated nun ; and this intercourfe, we are told, was looked upon by them as an aft of holinefs and religion. The child which was the fruit of this intercourfe was taken on the eighth day and purified by fire, "in the manner of the ancient Pagans," — fo fays the contemporary writer of this document, — it was burnt to afhes in a large fire made for that purpofe. The afhes were collected with great reverence, and preferved, to be adminiftered to members of the fociety who were dying, juft as good Chriftians received the viaticum. It is added that there was fuch a virtue in thefe afhes, that an individual who had once tafted them would hardly ever after be able to turn his mind from that herefy and take the path of truth.^

1 Congregabantur fiquidem certis no6libus in domo denominata, finguli lucernas tenentes in manibus, et, ad inftar letaniae, daemonum nomina declamabant, donee fubito daemonem in fimilitudine cujuflibet beftiolae inter eos viderent defcendere. Qui, ftatim ut vifibilis ilia videbatur vifio, omnibus extinftis luminaribus, quam- primum quifque poterat, mulierem quae ad manum libi veniebat ad abutendum arri-


Whatever degree of truth there may have been in this ftory, it muft have been greatly exaggerated; but the conviftion of the exiftence of fecret focieties of this charader during the middle ages appears to have been fo ftrong and so generally held, that we muft hefitate in rejecting it. Perhaps we may take the leaden tokens already defcribed, and reprefented in one of our plates,' as evidence of the exiftence of fuch focieties, for thefe curious objeds appear to admit of no other fatisfadlory explanation than that of having been in ufe in fecret clubs of a very impure charader.

It has been already remarked that people foon feized upon accu- fations of this kind as excufes for perfecution, religious and poli- tical, and we meet with a curious example in the earlier half of the thirteenth century. The diftrid of Steding, in the north of Ger- many, now known as Oldenburg, was at the beginning of the thirteenth century inhabited by a people who lived in fturdy inde- pendence, but the archbiftiops of Bremen feem to have claimed feme fort of feudal fuperiority over them, which they refifted by force. The archbiftiop, in revenge, declared them heretics, and proclaimed a crufade againft them. Crufades againft heretics were then in faftiion, for it was juft at the time of the great war againft the Albigeois. The Stedingers maintained their independence fuc- cefsfuUy for fome years. In 1232 and 1233, the pope iffued two

piebat, fine peccati refpeftu et utrum mater aut foror aut monacha haberetur, pro fanftitate ac religione ejus concubitus ab illis sftimabatur. Ex quo fpurciffimo concu- bitu infans generatus oftava die in medio eorum copiofo ignc accenfo piabatur per ignem, more antiquorum paganorum, et fic in igne cremabatur. Cujus cinis tanta veneratione colligebatur atque cuftodiebatur, ut Chriftiana religiofitas corpus Chrilli cuftodiri folet, aegris dandum de hoc feculo exituris ad viaticum. Incrat enim tanta visdiabolicas fraudis in ipfo cinere, ut quicumquede prajfatahicrefi imbutus fuiflet, ct de eodem cinere quamvis sumendo parum praclibavifTet, vixunquam poilea de eadem hasrefi grefTum mentis ad viam veritatis dirigere valeret. Guerard, Cartulaire de I Abbaye de Saint-Pere de Chartres, vol. i, p. 112. 1 See before, p. 146, and Plate xxxiii.


bulls againft the offending Stedingers, in both of which he charges them with various heathen and magical practices, but in the fecond he enters more fully into details. Thefe Stedingers, the pope (Gregory IX.) tells us, performed the following ceremonies at the initiation of a new convert into their fed. When the novice was introduced, a toad prefented itfelf, which all who were prefent kiffed, fome on the pofteriors, and others on the mouth, when they drew its tongue and fpittle into their own mouths. Sometimes this toad appeared of only the natural fize, but fometimes it was as big as a goofe or duck, and often its fize was that of an oven. As the novice proceeded, he encountered a man who was extraordinarily pale, with large black eyes, and whofe body was fo wafted that his flefli feemed to be all gone, leaving nothing but the fkin hanging on his bones. The novice kiffed this perfonage, and found him as cold as ice ; and after this kifs all traces of the Catholic faith vaniftied from his heart. Then they all fat down to a banquet; and when this was over, there ftepped out of a ftatue, which ftood in their place of meeting, a black cat, as large as a moderate fized dog, which advanced backwards to them, with its tail turned up. The novice firft, then the mafter, and then all the others in their turns, kiffed the cat under the tail, and then returned to their places, where they remained in filence, with their heads inclined towards the cat. Then the mafter fuddenly pronounced the words "Spare us ! " which he addreffed to the next in order ; and the third answered, " We know it, lord ; " and a fourth added, " We ought to obey." At the clofe of this ceremony the lights were extinguiftied, and each man took the firft woman who came to hand, and had carnal inter- courfe with her. When this was over, the candles were again lighted, and the performers refumed their places. Then out of a dark corner of the room came a man, the upper part of whom, above the loins, was bright and radiant as the fun, and illuminated the whole room, while his lower parts were rough and hairy like a


cat. The mafter then tore off a bit of the garment of the novice, and faid to the (hining perfonage, " Mafter, this is given to me, and I give it again to thee." The mafter replied, " Thou haft ferved me well, and thou wilt ferve me more and better; what thou haft given me I give unto thy keeping." When he had faid this, the ftiining man vaniftied, and the meeting broke up. Such were the fecret ceremonies of the Stedingers, according to the deli- berate ftatement of pope Gregory IX, who alfo charges them with offering dired worftiip to Lucifer.^

But the moft remarkable, and at the fame time the moft cele- brated, affair in which thefe accufations of fecret and obfcene cere- monies were brought to bear, was that of the trial and diffolution of the order of the knights templars. The charges againft the knights templars were not heard of for the firft time at the period of their diffolution, but for many years it had been whifpered abroad that they had fecret opinions and pradices of an objedionable character. At length the wealth of the order, which was very great in France, excited the cupidity of king Philippe IV, and it was refolved to proceed againft them, and defpoil them of their poffeffions. The grounds for thefe proceedings were furniftied by two templars, one a Gafcon, the other an Italian, who were evi- dently men of bad charafter, and who, having been imprifoned for fome offence or offences, made a confeffion of the fecret pradices of their order, and upon thefe confeflions certain articles of accu- fation were drawn up. Thefe appear to have been enlarged afterwards. In 1307, Jacques de Molay, the grand mafter of the order, was treacheroufly allured to Paris by the king, and there feized and thrown into prifon. Others, fimilarly committed to prifon in all parts of the kingdom, were examined individually on

' Baror.ius, An/tales Ecclefiajlici, torn, xxi, p. 89, where the two bulls are printed, and where the details of the hillory of the Stedingers will be found,



the charges urged againft them, and many confefTed, while others obftinately denied the whole. Amongft thefe charges were the following: i. That on the admiffion of a new member of the order, after having taken the oath of obedience, he was obliged to deny Chrift, and to fpit, and fometimes alfo to trample, upon the crofs ; 2. That they then received the kifs of the templar, who officiated as receiver, on the mouth, and afterwards were obliged to kifs him in ano, on the navel, and fometimes on the generative member ; 3. That, in defpite of the Saviour, they fometimes wor- {hipped a cat, which appeared amongft them in their fecret conclave; 4. That they pradifed unnatural vice together; 5. That they had idols in their different provinces ; in the form of a head, having fometimes three faces, fometimes two, or only one, and fometimes a bare fkull, which they called their faviour, and believed its in- fluence to be exerted in making them rich, and in making flowers grow and the earth germinate ; and 6. That they always wore about their bodies a cord which had been rubbed againft the head, and which ferved for their protedlion.^

The ceremonies attending the reception into the order were fo univerfally acknowledged, and are defcribed in terms which have fo much the appearance of truthfulnefs, that we can hardly altogether diflDelieve in them. The denial was to be repeated thrice,no doubt in imitation of St. Peter. 1 1 appears to have been considered as a trial of the ftrength of the obedience they had just fworn to the order, and they all pleaded that they had obeyed with reludance, that they had denied with the mouth but not with the heart ; and that they had intentionally fpit befide the crofs and not upon it. In one inftance the crofs was of filver, but it was more commonly of brafs, and ftill more frequently of wood ; on one occafion the crofs painted in a miflal was ufed, and the crofs on the templar's mantle often ferved

^ Proch des Templiers, edited by M. Michelet, vol. i, pp. 90-92.


the purpofe. When one Nicholas de Compiegne protefted againft thefe two ads, all the templars who were prefent told him that he muft do them, for it was the ciiftom of the order.^ Baldwin de St. Juft at firft refufed, but the receptor warned him that if he perfifted in his refufal, it would be the worfe for him {aliler male accideret fibi), and then " he was fo much alarmed that his hair flood on end."* Jacques de Trecis faid that he did it under fear, becaufe his receptor flood by with a great naked fword in his hand.^ Another, Geoffrey de Thatan, having fimilarly refufed, his receptor told him that they were " points of the order," and that if he did not comply, " he fhould be put in fuch a place that he would never fee his own feet."* And another who refufed to utter the words of denial was thrown into prifon and kept there until vefpers, and when he faw that he was in peril of death, he yielded, and did whatever the receptor required of him, but he adds that he was fo troubled and frightened that he had forgotten whether he fpat on the crofs or not. Gui de la Roche, a prell^yter of the diocefe of Limoges, faid that he uttered the denial with great weeping." Another, when he denied Chrirt, "was all ftupified and troubled, and it feemed to him as if he were enchanted, not knowing what counfel to take, as they threatened him heavily if he did not do it." When Etienne de

^ Proces des Temp Hers, ii, 418.

2 Et tunc ipfe tellis fuit magis attonitus, et orripilavit, id eft eriguere pili fui. Proces, i, 242.

3 Proces, i, 254.

■* Subjunxit idem receptor quod ifta erant de pundlis ordinis .... fubjiciens diftum prsceptorem fibi dixifle quod, nifi prsdifta faceret, poneretur in tali loco quod nunquam videret pedes fuos. Proces, \, pp. 222, 223. See alfo, i, 321.

5 Et tunc dirtus recipiens pofuit eum in quodam carcere, in quo ftetit ufque ad vefperas ; et cum vidiftet quod efTct in periculo mortis, petivit quod exiret, et faceret voluntatem ejus. Proces, ii, 284.

6 Cum magno fletu. Proces, ii, 219.

7 Et ipfe fuit totus ftupefaftus et turbatus, et videbatur fibi quafi quod eflet in-


Dijon fimilarly refufed to deny his Saviour, the preceptor told him that he muft do it becaufe he had fworn to obey his orders, and then "he denied with his mouth," hefaid, "but not with his heart; and he did this with great grief," and he adds that when it was done, he was fo confcience-ftruck that " he wifhed he had been outfide at his liberty, even though it had been with the lofs of one of his arms."^ When Odo de Dompierre, with great relu6lance, at length fpat on the crofs, he faid that he did it with fuch bitter- nefs of heart that he would rather have had his two thighs broken.^ Michelet, in the account of the proceedings againft the templars in his " Hiftory of France," offers an ingenious explanation of thefe ceremonies of initiation which gives them a typical meaning. He imagines that they were borrowed from the figurative myfteries and rites of the early Church, and fuppofes that, in this fpirit, the can- didate for admiffion into the order was firft prefented as a finner and renegade, in which character, after the example of Peter, he was made to deny Chrift. This denial, he fuggefts, was a fort of pantomime in which the novice expreffed his reprobate ftate by fpitting on the crofs ; after which he was ftripped of his profane clothing, received, through the kifs of the order, into a higher ftate of faith, and clothed with the garb of its holinefs. If this were the cafe, the true meaning of the performance muft have been very foon forgotten.

This was efpecially the cafe with the kifs. According to the

cantatus, nefciens fibi ipfi confulere, cum comminarentur eidem graviter nifi hoc faceret. Proces, i, 291.

^ Preceptor refpondit ei quod oportebat eum abnegare, quia juraverat obedire przeceptis fuis ; et teftis abnegavit ore, ficut dixit, et non corde ; et hoc fecit cum magno dolore, et voluiffet, ficut dixit, tunc fuiffe extra in libertate fua cum uno folo brachio, quia faciebat contra confcientiam fuam. Proces, i, 302.

2 Adjiciens fe cum magna cordis amaritudine hoc fecifle, et quod tunc magis vo- luiffet habuiffe crura fra6la, quam facere praedi6la, et fuit per aliquod fpatium, ficut dixit, relu(5lans priufquam hoc faceret. Proces, i, 307.


articles of accufation, one of the ceremonies of initation required the novice to kifs the receiver on the mouth, on the anus^ or the end of the fpine, on the navel, and on the virga virilis? The laft is not mentioned in the examinations, but the others are defcribed by fo many of the witnefles that we cannot doubt of their truth. From the depofitions of many of the templars examined, it would appear that the ufual order was to kifs the receptor firft in am, next on the navel, and then on the mouth.^ The firft of thefe was an ad which would, of courfe, be repulfive to moft people, and the pradice arofe gradually of only kifting the end of the fpine, or, as it was called in mediaeval Latin, in anca. Bertrand de Somorens, of the diocefe of Amiens, defcribing a reception at which more than one new member was admitted, fays that the receiver next told them that they muft kifs him in ano; but, inftead of kifling him there, they lifted up his clothes and kifled him on the fpine;^ The receptor, it appears, had the power of remitting this kifs when he judged there was a fufticient reafon. Etienne de Dijon, a prefbyter of the diocefe of Langres, faid that, when he was admitted into the order, the preceptor told him that he ought, " according to the obfervances of the order," to kifs his receiver in ano, but that in confideration of his being a preiliyter, he would fpare him and remit this kifs.* Pierre de Grumenil, alfo a prefbyter, when called

1 Item, quod in receptione fratrum difti ordinis, vel circa, interdum recipiens et receptus aliquando fe deofculabantur in ore, in umbilico feu in ventre nudo, et in ano feu fpina dorfi .... aliquando in virga virili. Proces, i, 91.

2 See the Proces, ii, 286, 362, 364.

3 Deinde prjecepit eis quod ofcularentur eum in ano ; ipfi tamen non fuerunt eum inibi ofculati, fed, elevatis pannis, prasdiftum receptorem fuerunt ofculati in fpina dorfi nuda, et hoc fecerunt, quia dixit eis quod erat de pundlis ordinis. Proces, ii, 60. Another faid, on another occafion, Pr^ecepit etiam diftus receptor eis, quod ofcularentur cum in ano et in umbilico, et ipfi ofculati fuerunt in anca et umbilico fuper carnem nudam. lb. ii, i 59.

^ Item dixit quod, praediftis peradlis, diftus praeceptor dixit ei quod fecundum ob-


upon to perform this adt, refufed, and was allowed to kifs his re- ceiver on the navel only/ A prefbyter named Ado de Dompierre was excufed for the fame reafon/ as well as many others. Another templar, named Pierre de Lanhiac, faid that, at his reception into the order, his receptor told him that he muft kifs him in ano^ becaufe that was one of the points of the order, but that, at the earneft fupplication of his uncle, who was prefent, and muft there- fore have been a knight of the order, he obtained a remilTion of this kifs.^

Another charge againft the templars was ftill more difgufting. It was faid that they profcribed all intercourfe with women, and one of the men examined ftated, which was alfo confefTed by others, that his receptor told him that, from that hour, he was never to enter a houfe in which a woman lay in labour, nor to take part as godfather at the baptifm of any child,* but he added that he had broken his oath, for he had affifted at the baptifm of feveral chil- dren while ftill in the order, which he had left about a year before the feizure of the templars, for the love of a woman of whom he had become enamoured. On the other hand, thofe who replied to the interrogatory of the king's officers in this procefs, were all but unanimous in the avowal that on entering the order they received

fervantias ordinis eorum recepti debebant ofculari in ano receptores, quia tamen idem teftis erat prefbyter, parcebat ei et remittebat fibi diftum ofculum. Proces, i, 302.

1 Deinde praecepit quod ofcularetur eum in ano, et cum ipfe teftis nollet hoc facere, praecepit quod ofcularetur eum faltem in umbilico fuper carnem nudam, et fuit eum ibi ofculatus. Proces, ii, 24.

2 Proces, i, 307.

3 Poft quas dixit eidem quod fecundum difta punfta debebat eum ofculari in ano, et praecepit quod ibi ofcularetur eum, fed, avunculo ipfius teftis flexis genibus inftante, remifit ei ofculum memoratum. Proces, ii, 2.

^ Dixit etiam quod ab ilia hora in antea non intraret domum in qua aliqua mulier jaceret in puerperio, nee fufciperet aliquem nee teneret in facro fonte. Proces, i, 255.


the permiilion to commit fodomy amongft themfelves. Two or three profefled not to have underftood this injundion in a bad fenfe, hut to have fuppofed that it only meant that, when the brethren were fhort of beds, each was to be ready to lend half his bed to his fellow/ One of them, named Gillet de Encraye, faid that he at firft fuppofed it to be meant innocently, but that his re- ceptor immediately undeceived him, by repeating it in lefs covert terms, at which he was himfelf fo horrified that he wifhed himfelf far away from the chapel in which the ceremony took place.^ A great number of templars ftated that, after the kiffes of initiation, they were informed that if they felt moved by natural heat, they might call any one of the brethren to their relief,and that they ought to relieve their brethren when appealed to under the fame circum- ftances.^ This appears to have been the moft common form of the injunction. In one or two inftances the receiver is defcribed as adding that this was an ad of contempt towards the other fex, which may perhaps be confidered as fhowing that the ceremony was derived from fome of the myfteries of the ftrange feds which appeared in the earlier ages of Christianity. Jean de St. Loup, who held the office of mafter of the houfe of templars at Soifiac, faid that, on his reception into the order, he received the injundion

1 Poft quae immediate prascepit idem frater P. ipfi tefti quod fi aliquis frater difti ordinis vellet jacere fecum, non deberet recufare. Ipfe tamen teftis, ut dixit, non intellexit quod hoc diceret ut jacentes infimul aliquod peccatum committeretur, fed, fi deficeret leflus alteri, quod reciperet eum in ledlo fuo honefto. Proces, i, 262. See again, i. 568.

2 Sed diftus frater Johannes fubjunxit et declaravit quod carnaliter poterant com- mifceri, de quo ipfe teftis fuit multum turbatus, ut dixit, et multum dcfideravit, ut dixit, quod tunc eflet extra portam diftae capellse. Procl's, i, 250.

3 Quo fafto, dixit fibi recipiens quod ^\ aliquis calor naturalis movcret eum ad libi- dinem excrccndam, faceret fccum jacere unum de fratribus fuis ct haberet rem cum eo, et permitteret hoc idem fimiliter fibi fieri ab aliis fratribus. Proces, ii, 284. Conf. pp. 287, 288.


not to have intercourfe with women, but, if he could not perfevere in continence, he might have the fame intercourfe with men ;^ and others were told that it would " be better to fatisfy their luft among themfelves, whereby the order would efcape evil report,than if they went to women. "^ But although the almoft unanimity of the confef- fions leave hardly room for a doubt that fuchinjundions were given, yet on the other hand they are equally unanimous in denying that thefe injunctions were carried into praftice. Almoft every templar, as the queftions were put to him, after admitting that he was told that he might indulge in fuch vice with the other brethren, afterted that he had never done this,and that he had never been afked to do fo by any of them. Theobald de Taverniac, whofe name tells us that he came from the fouth, denied indignantly the exiftence of fuch a vice among their order, but in terms which themfelves told not very much in favour of the morality of the templars in other refpefts. He faid that, " as to the crime of fodomy," he believed the charge to be totally untrue, "becaufe they could have very handfome and elegant women when they liked, and that they did have them frequently when they were rich and powerful enough to afford it, and that on this account he and other brothers of the order were removed from their houfes, as he faid."^ We have an implied acknowledgment that the templars did not entirely

1 Dixit etiam per juramentum fuum quod fuit fibi injunftum per eos quod non haberet rem cum mulieribus, fed, fi continere non poflet, commifceret fe carnaliter cum hominibus. Proces, 287. Conf. ii, 288, 294, etc.

2 Poftea unus praediftorum fervientium dixit eis quod, fi haberent calorem et motus carnales, poterant ad invicem carnaliter commifceri, fi volebant, quia melius erat quod hoc facerent inter fe, ne ordo vituperaretur, quam ^\ accederent ad mulieres. Proces, i, 386.

3 De crimine fodomitico, refpondit fe nihil fcire, nee credere contenta in ipfis arti- culis efle vera, quia poterant habere mulieres pulchras et bene comptas, et frequenter eas habebant, cum effent divites et potentes, et ex hoc ipfe et alii fratres ipiius ordinis amoti fuerant a fuis domibus, ut dixit. Proces, \, 326.


negled: the other lex in a Itatement quoted by l)u Puy that, if a child were born from the intercourfe between a templar and a virgin, they roafted it, and made an unguent of its fat, with which they anointed their idol.^ Thofe who confefled to the exiftence of the vice were fo few, and their evidence fo indefinite or indired, that they are deferving of no confideration. One had heard that fome brethren beyond the fea had committed unnatural vices.^ Another, Hugh de Faure, had heard fay that two brothers of the order, dwelling in the Chateau Pelerin, had been charged with fodomy ; that, when this reached the ears of the mafter, he gave orders for their arreft, and that one had been killed in the attempt to efcape, while the other was taken and im- prifoned for life.^ Peter Brocart, a templar of Paris, declared that one of the order, one night, called him and committed fodomy with him ; adding that he had not refufed, becaufe he confidered himfelf bound to obedience by the rules of the order.* The evi- dence is decidedly ftrong againft the prevalence of fuch a vice among the templars, and the alleged permiflion was perhaps a mere form of words, which concealed fome occult meaning unknown to the mafs of the templars themfelves. We are not inclined to rejed: altogether the theory of the baron von Hammer-Ptirgftall, that the templars had adopted fome of the myfterious tenets of the eaftern Gnoftics.

' Prseterea, fi ex templarii coitu infans ex puella virgine nafcebatur, hunc igni torrebant ; exque eliquata inde pinguedine fuum fimulachrum decoris gratia unge- bant. Robert Gaguin, ap. Du Puy, Hijhire de I'OrJre Militaire des Templiers, p. 24.

2 Proces, ii, 213.

•* Audivit dici quod duo fratres ordinis, commorantes in Callro Pcrcgrini, crant de crimine fodomitico difFamati ; et cum hoc perveniflet ad magiilrum, mandavit cos capi, et unus illorum fuit interfeftus cum fugeret, et alter f'uit perpetuo carceri man- cipatus. Proces, ii, 223.

^ Proces, ii, 294.



In regard to the fecret idolatry with which the templars were charged, it is a fubjed; involved in great obfcurity. The cat is but little fpoken of in the depofitions. Some Italian knights confefled that they had been prefent at a fecret chapter of twelve knights held at Brindiii, when a grey cat fuddenly appeared amongft them, and they worfhipped it. At Nifmes, fome templars declared that they had been prefent at a chapter at Montpellier, when the demon appeared to them in the form of a cat, and promifed them worldly profperity, but they appear to have been vifionaries not to be trufted, for they ftated that at the fame time devils appeared in the fhape of women. An Englifh templar, examined in London, de- pofed that in England they did not adore the cat, or the idol, but that he had heard it pofitively ftated that the cat and the idol were worftiipped by the templars in parts beyond fea.^ A folitary Frenchman, examined in Paris, Gillet de Encreyo, fpoke of the cat, and faid that he had heard, but had forgotten who were his informants, and did not believe them, that beyond fea a certain cat had appeared to the templars in their battles.^ The cat belongs to a lower clafs of popular fuperftitions, perhaps, than that of the templars.

This, however, was not the cafe with the idol, which was gene- rally defcribed as the figure of a human head, and appears only to have been fhown in the more fecret chapter meetings on parti- cular occafions. Many of the templars examined before the com- miflioners, faid that they had heard this idol head fpoken of as exifting in the order, and others depofed to having feen it. It was generally defcribed as being about the natural fize of a man's head,

^ Refpondit quod in Anglia non adorant catum cec idolum, quod ipfe fciat ; fed audivit bene, quod adorant catum et idolum in partibus tranfmarinis. Wilkins, Concilia, vol. ii, p. 384.

- Audivit tamen ab aliquibus dici, de quibus non recordatur, quod quidam catus apparebat ultra mare in prasliis eorum, quod tamen non credit. Proces, i, 251.


with a very fierce-looking face and a beard, the latter fometimes white. Different witnefles varied as to the material of which it was made, and, indeed, in various other particulars, which lead us to fuppofe that each houfe of the templars, where the idol exifted, had its own head, and that they varied in form. They agreed generally that this head was an objed of worfhip. One templar depofcd that he was prefent at a chapter of the order in Paris, when the head was brought in, but he was unable to defcribe it at all, for, when he faw it, he was fo ftruck with terror that he hardly knew where he was. ^ Another, Ralph de Gyfi, who held the office of receptor for the province of Champagne, faid that he had feen the head in many chapters; that, when it was introduced, all prefent threw themfelves on the ground and adored it: and when afked to de- fcribe it, he faid, on his oath, that its countenance was fo terrible, that it feemed to him to be the figure of a demon — ufing the French word un maufe, and that as often as he faw it, fo great a fear took pofl'effion of him, that he could hardly look upon it without fear and trembling.^ Jean Taylafer faid that, at his reception into the order, his attention was directed to a head upon the altar in the chapel, which he was told he muff worfhip; he defcribed it as of the natural fize of a man's head, but could not defcribe it more particularly, except that he thought it was ofareddiffi colour.-'^ Raynerus de Larchent faw the head twice in a chapter, efpecially once in Paris, where it had a baard, and they adored and kifl"ed it,

^ Ipfe teftis, vilb dido capite, fuit adeo perterritus quod quafi nefciret ubi efret. Procesy i, 399.

2 Interrogatus cujus figurse eft, dixit per juramentum fuum quod ita eft tcrribilis figurae et afpeftus quod videbatur fibi quod eflet figura cujufdam dasmonis, dicens Gallice d'un maufe, et quod quocienfcunque videbat eum tantus timor eum invade- bat, quod vix poterat illud refpicere nifi cum maximo timore et tremore. Proces,

. ii, 364.

3 Proces, i, 190.


and called it their faviour.^ Guillermus de Herbaleyo faw the head with its beard, at two chapters. He thought it was of filver gilt, and wood infide. He "faw the brethern adore it, and he went through the form of adoring it himfelf, but he did it not in his heart." ^ According to one witnefs, Deodatus Jaffet, a knight from the fouth of France who had been received at Pedenat, the receptor fhowed him a head, or idol, which appeared to have three faces, and faid to him, "You muft adore this as your faviour, and the faviour of the order of the temple," and he added that he was made to worfhip the idol, faying, " BlefTed be he who fhall fave my foul ! " Another deponent gave a very fimilar account. Another knight of the order, Hugo de Paraudo, faid that, in a chapter at Montpellier, he had both feen, held, and felt, the idol, or head, and that he and the other brothers adored it, but he, like the others, pleaded that he did not adore it in his heart. He defcribed it as fupported on four feet, two before and two behind.^ Guillaume de Arrablay, the king's almoner [eleemqfynarius regius), faid that in the chapter at which he was received, a head made of filver was placed on the altar, and adored by thofe who formed the chapter ; he was told that it was the head of one of the eleven thoufand virgins, and had always believed this to be the cafe, until after the arreft of the order, when, hearing all that was faid on the matter, he "fufpeded" that it was the idol ; and he adds in his depofition that it feemed to him to have two faces, a terrible look, and a filver beard.* It does not appear very clear why he fhould have taken a head with two faces, a fierce look, and a beard,

^ Quod adorant, ofculantur, et vocant falvatorem fuum. Proces, ii, 279.

^ Et vidit fratres adorare illud ; et ipfe fingebat illud adorare, fed nunquam fecit corde, ut dixit. Proces, ii, 300.

3 Proces, ii, 363.

'* Videtur fibi quod haberet duas facies, et quod effet terribilis afpeftu, et quod ha- beret barbam argenteam. Proces, i, 502.


for one of the eleven thoufand virgins, but this is, perhaps, partly explained by the depofition of another witnefs, Guillaume Pidoye, who had the charge of the relics, &c, belonging to the Temple in Paris, and who produced a head of filver gilt, having a woman's face, and a fmall fkull, refembling that of a woman, infide, which was faid to be that of one of the eleven thoufand virgins. At the fame time another head was brought forward, having a beard, and fuppofed to be that of the idol.^ Both thefe witnefTes had no doubt confounded two things. Pierre Garald, of Murfac, another witnefs, faid that after he had denied Chrift and fpittenon the crofs, the receptor drew from his bofom a certain fmall image of brafs or gold, which appeared to reprefent the figure of a woman, and told him that " he muft believe in it, and have faith in it, and that it would be well for him."^ Here the idol appears in the form of a ftatuette. There was alfo another account of the idol, which perhaps refers to fome further objed of fuperftition among the templars. According to one deponent, it was an old fkin embalmed, with bright carbuncles for eyes, which fhone like the light of heaven. Others faid that it was the fkin of a man, but agreed with the others in regard to the carbuncles.^ In England a minorite friar depofed that an Englifh knight of the Temple had aflured him that the templars had four principal idols in this country, one in the facrifty of the Temple in London, another at Briftelham, a third at Brueria (Bruern in Lincolnfhire), and the fourth at fome place beyond the Humber.'*

1 Proces, ii, 218.

2 Item, dixit quod poil prsdidla didlus receptor, extrahens de finu fuo quamdam parvam imaginem de leone (^apparently a mi/reading') vel de auro, quas vidcbatur habere effigiem muliebrem, dixit ei quod crederet in earn, et haberet in ea fiduciam, et bene fibi eflet. Proces, ii, 212.

3 Du Puy, HiJ}. des Tenpl., pp. 22, 24. ^ Wilkins, Concil., vol. ii, p. 363.


Another piece of information relating to this " idol," which has been the fubjed: of confiderable difcuflion among modern writers, was elicited from the examination of fome knights from the fouth. Gauferand de Montpefant, a knight of Provence, faid that their fuperior fhowed him an idol made in the form of Baffomet;^ ano- ther, named Raymond Rubei, defcribed it as a wooden head, on which the figure of Baphomet was painted, and adds, " that he worfhipped it by kiffingits feet, and exclaiming ' Yalla,' which was," he fays, " verbum Saracenorum" a word taken from the Saracens.^ A templar of Florence declared that, in the fecret chapters of the order, one brother faid to the other, fhowing the idol, " Adore this head — this head is your god and your Mahomet." The word Mahomet was ufed commonly in the middle ages as a general term for an idol or falfe god ; but fome writers have fuggefted that Ba- phomet is itfelf a mere corruption of Mahomet, and fuppofe that the templars had fecretly embraced Mahometanifm. A much more remarkable explanation of this word has, however, been propofed, which is, at the leaft, worthy of very great confideration, efpecially as it comes from fo diftinguifhed an orientalift and fcholar as the late baron Jofeph von Hammer-Piirgftall. It arofe partly from the comparifon of a number of objeds of art, ornamented with figures, and belonging apparently to the thirteenth century. Thefe objeds confift chiefly of fmall images, or ftatuettes, coffers, and cups.^

1 Que leur fuperieur lui montra une idole barbue faite in jiguram Baffometi. Du Puy, Hijl. des Temp Hers, p. 216.

2 Du Puy, HiJ}. des Templiers, p. 21.

3 Von Hammer publiflied his difcoveries and opinions in 1816, in an elaborate eflay in the fixth volume of the Fundgruben des Orients, entitled, Myjlerium Bn- phometis revelatum, feu fratres militia Templi, qua gnojiici et quidem ophiani apo- Jiafi^, idolodulia et impuritatis conviSli per ipfa eorum monument a. In 1832, he publiihed a fupplementary eflay under the title Memoire fur deux coffrets gnojliques du Moyen Age, du Cabinet de M. le Due de Blacas, par M. Jofeph de Hammer.


Von Hammer has defcribed, and given engravings of, twenty- four such images, which it muft be acknowledged anfwer very well to the defcriptions of their "idol " given by the templars in their examinations, except only that the templars ufually fpeakof them as of the fize of life, and as being merely heads. Mod of them have beards, and tolerably fierce countenances. Among thofe given by Von Hammer are feven which prefent only a head, and two with two faces, backwards and forwards, as defcribed in fome of the de- pofitions. Thefe two appear to be intended for female heads. Altogether Von Hammer has defcribed fifteen cups and goblets, but a much fmaller number of coffers. Both cups and coffers are ornamented with extremely curious figures, reprefenting a continu- ous fcene, apparently religious ceremonies of fome kind or other, but certainly of an obfcene charader, all the perfons engaged in which are reprefented naked. It is not a part of our fubjed to enter into a detailed examination of thefe myfteries. The moft in- terefting of the coffers defcribed by Von Hammer, which was pre- ferved in the private mufeum of the due de Blacas, is of calcarous flone, nine inches long by feven broad, and four and a half deep, with a lid about two inches thick. It was found in Burgundy. On the lid is fculptured a figure, naked, with a head-drefs refemb- ling that given to Cybele in ancient monuments, holding up achain with each hand, and furrounded with various fymbols, the fun and moon above, the flar and the pentacle below, and under the feet a human fkull.^ The chains are explained by Von Hammer as repre- fenting the chains of aeons of the Gnoflics. On the four fides of the coffer we fee a feries of figures engaged in the performance of various ceremonies, which are not eafily explained, but which Von Hammer confiders as belonging to the rites of the Gnoftics and Ophians. The offering of a calf figures prominently among thefe

^ See our plate xxxviii.


rites, a worfhip which is faid ftill to exift among the Noflarii, or NefTarenes, the Drufes, and other feds in the Eaft. In the middle of the fcene on one fide, a human fkull is feen, raifed upon a pole. On another fide an androgynous figure is reprefentedas theobjeftof worfhip of two candidates for initiation, who wear mafks apparently of a cat, and whofe form of adoration reminds us of the kifs enafted at the initiation of the templars.^ This group reminds us, too, of the pictures of the orgies in the worfhip of Priapus, as reprefented on Roman monuments. The fecond of the coffers in the cabinet of the due de Blacas was found in Tufcany, and is rather larger than the one just defcribed, but made of the fame material, though of a finer grain. The lid of this coffer is loft, but the fides are covered with fculpture of a fimilar charafter. A large goblet, or bowl, of marble, in the imperial mufeum at Vienna, is furrounded by a feries of figures of fimilar character, which are engraved by Von Hammer, who fees in one group of men (who are furnifhed in the original withprominent phalli) and ferpents, a dired; allufion to Ophite rites. Next after thefe comes a group which we have reproduced in our plate,^ reprefenting a flrange figure feated upon an eagle, and accompanied with two of the fymbols reprefented on the coffer found in Burgundy, the fun and moon. The two fymbols below are confidered by Von Hammer to reprefent, ac- cording to the rude mediaeval notions of its form, the womb, or matrix ; the fecundating organ is penetrating the one, while the infant is emerging from the other. The laft figure in this feries, which we have alfo copied,^ is identical with that on the lid of the coffer found in Burgundy, but it is diflindfly reprefented as andro- gynous. We have exadly the fame figure on another coffer, in the Vienna mufeum,* with fome of the fame fymbols, the flar, pentacle,

1 Plate xxxix, fig. i. ^ Plate xxxix, fig. 2. ^ Plate xxxix, fig. 3.

■* Plate xxxix, fig. 4.


and huiiKin (kull. Perhaps, in this laft, the beard is intended to (how that the figure muft be taken as androgynous.

On an impartial comparifon we can hardly doubt that thefe curious objeds, — images, coffers, cups, and bowls, — have been intended for ufe in fome fecret and myfterious rites, and the arguments by which Von Hammer attempts to (how that they belonged to the templars feem at leaft to be very plaufible. Several of the objeds reprefented upon them, even the fkull, are alluded to in fome of the confeffions of the templars, and thefe evidently only confeffed a part of what they knew, or otherwife they were very imperfedly acquainted with the fecrets of their order. Perhaps the moft fecret dodrines and rites were only com- municated fully to a fmall number. There is, however, another circumflance conneded with thefe objeds which appears to furnifh an almoft irrefiftible confirmation of Von Hammer's theory. Mofl: of them bear infcriptions, written in Arabic, Greek, and Roman charaders. The infcriptions on the images appear to be merely proper names, probably thofe of their poffeffors. But with the coffers and bowls the cafe is different, for they contain a nearly uniform infcription in Arabic charaders,which,according to the inter- pretation given by Von Hammer, contains a religious formula. The Arabic charaders, he fays, have been copied by a European, and not very {kilful, carver, who did not understand them, from an Eaftern original, and the infcriptions contain corruptions and errors which either arofe from this circumftance, or, as Von Hammer fuggefts, may have been introduced defignedly, for the purpofe of concealing the meaning from the uninitiated. A good example of this infcrip- tion furrounds the lid of the coffer found in Burgundy, and is interpreted as follows by Von Hammer, who regards it as a fort of parody on the Cantate laudes Domini. In fad, the word under the feet of the figure, between them and the fkull, is nothing more than the Latin cantate expreffed in Arabic letters. The words with



which this Cantate begins are written above the head of the figure, and are read by Von Hammer as Jah la Sidna^ which is more cor- reftly Jella Sidna, i. e. O God, our Lord! The formula itfelf, to which this is an introduction, commences on the right fide, and the firfl; part of it reads Houve Mete Zonar fejeba {or Jebad) B. Mounkir teaala tix. There is no fuch word in Arabic as mete^ and Von Hammer confiders it to be fimply the Greek word iJt-rjTK;^ wifdom, a perfonification in what we may perhaps call the Gnoftic mytho- logy anfwering to the Sophia of the Ophianites. He confiders that the name Baphomet is derived from the Greek words I3a(f)rj fX')]T€o<i, i. e. the baptifm of Metis, and that in its application it is equivalent with the name Mete itfelf. He has further fliown, we think conclufively, that Baphomet, inftead of being a corruption of Mahomet, was a name known among the Gnoftic fefts in the Eaft. Zonar is not an Arabic word, and is perhaps only a cor- ruption or error of the fculptor, but Von Hammer thought it meant a girdle, and that it alluded to the myfterious girdle of the templars, of which fo much is faid in their examinations. The letter B is fuppofed by Von Hammer to ftand here for the name Baphomet, or for that of Barbalo, one of the moft important per- fonages in the Gnoftic mythology. Mounkir is the Arabic word for a perfon who denies the orthodox faith. The reft of the formula is given on the other fide of the figure, but as the infcription here prefents feveral corruptions, we will give Von Hammer's tranfla- tion (in Latin) of the more corre6t copy of the formula infcribed on the bowl or goblet preferved ip the mufeum at Vienna. In the Vienna bowl, the formula of faith is written on a fort of large placard, which is held up to view by a figure apparently intended for another reprefentation of Mete or Baphomet. Von Hammer tranflates it: —

    • Exaltetur Mete germinans, ftirps noftra ego et feptem fuere, tu renegans reditus


This ftill is, it mull be confefled, rather myfterious, and, in fad, nioft of thefe copies of the formula of faith are more or lefs de- fedive, but, from a comparifon of them, the general form and meaning of the whole is made perfectly clear. This may be tranflated, " Let Mete be exalted, who caufes things to bud and bloflbm ! he is our root; it (the root) is one and feven ; abjure (the faith), and abandon thyfelf to all pleafures." The number feven is faid to refer to the feven archons of the Gnoftic creed.

There are certainly feveral points in this formula which prefent at leaft a lingular coincidence with the ftatements made in the exa- minations of the templars. In the firft place the invocation which precedes the formula, Yalla (Jah la), agrees exadly with the state- ment of Raymond Rubei, one of the Provencal templars that when the fuperior exhibited the idol, or figure of Baphomet, he kifled it and exclaimed "Yalla!" which he calls "a word of the Saracens," i. e. Arabic.^ It is evident that, in this cafe, the witnefs not only knew the word, but that he knew to what language it belonged. Again, the epithet ^^rw/«rt«j, applied to Mete, or Baphomet, is in accord with the ftatement in the formal lift of articles of accufation againft the templars, that they worfhipped their idol becaufe "it made the trees to flourifti and the earth to germinate."^ The abjuration of the formula on the monuments feems to be identical with the denial in the initiation of novices to the order of the Temple ; and it may be added, that the clofing words of the formula involve in the original an idea more obfcene than is exprefled in the tranflation, an allufion to the unnatural vice in which the templars are ftated to have received permifTion to indulge. There is another curious ftatement in the examinations which feems to point diredlly to our

1 Du Puy, Hill, des Templiers, p. 94.

2 Item, quod facit arbores florere. Item, quod terram germinare. Michelet, Proces des Templiers, i, 92.


images and coffers — one of the English witnefles under exami- nation, named John de Donington, who had left the order and become a friar at Sal if bury, faid that an old templar had affured him that " fome templars carried fuch idols in their coffers."^ They feem to have been treafured up for the fame reafon as the mandrake, for one article in the articles againft the templars is, that they wor- ihipped their idol becaufe " it could make them rich, and that it had brought all their great wealth to the order."'^

The two other claffes of what the Baron Von Hammer fuppofed to be relics of the fecret worfhip of the templars, appear to us to be much lefs fatisfadtorily explained. Thefe are fculptures on old churches, and coins or medals. Such fculptures are found, acord- ing to Von Hammer, on the churches of Schongraber, Waltendorf, and Bercktoldorf, in Auftria; in that of Deutfchaltenburg, and in the ruins of that of Poftyen, in Hungary ; and in thofe of Murau, Prague, and Egra, in Bohemia. To thefe examples we are to add the fculptures of the church of Montmorillon, in Poitou, fome of which have been engraved by Montfaucon,^ and thofe of the church of Ste. Croix, in Bordeaux. We have already* remarked the rather frequent prevalence of fubjects more or lefs obfcene in the fculptures which ornament early churches, and fug- gefted that they may be explained in fome degree by the tone given to fociety by the exiftence of this priapic worfhip ; but we are not inclined to agree with Von Hammer's explanation of them, or to think that they have any connection with the templars. We can eafily underftand the exiftence of fuch dired: allufions on coffers or

1 Item dixit idem veteranus eidem fratri jurato, quod aliqui templarii portant talia idola in cofFris fuis. Wilkins, Concilia, W, 363.

2 Item, quod divites facere. Item, quod omnes divitias ordinis dabat eis. Michelet, Proch, i. 92.

3 Montfaucon, A7itiquite Expliquee, Suppl. torn, ii, plate 59. ^ See before, p. 198.


other objeds intended to be concealed, or at leaft kept in private; but it is hardly probable that men who held opinions and pradifed rites the very rumour of which was then fo full of danger, would proclaim them publicly on the walls of their buildings, for the wall of a church was then, perhaps, the moft effeftual medium of publi- cation. The queftion of the fuppofed templar medals is very obfcure. Von Hammer has engraved a certain number of thefe objeds, which prefent various fmgular fubjeds on the obverfe, fometimes with a crofs on the reverfe, and fometimes bradeate. Antiquaries have given the name of abbey tokens to a rather numerous clafs of fuch medals, the ufe of which is ftill very uncer- tain, although there appears to be little doubt of its being of a religious charader. Some have fuppofed that they were diftributed to thofe who attended at certain facraments or rites of the Church, who could thus, when called up, prove by the number of their tokens, the greater or lefs regularity of their attendance. Whether this were the cafe or not, it is certain that the burlefque and other focieties of the middle ages, fuch as the feaft of fools, parodied thefe "tokens," and had burlefque medals, in lead and fometimes in other metals, which were perhaps ufed for a fimilar purpofe. We have already fpoken more than once of obfcene medals, and have engraved fpecimens of them, which were perhaps ufed in fecret focieties derived from, or founded upon, the ancient phallic worfhip. It is not at all improbable that the templars may have employed fimilar medals, and that ihofe would contain allufions to the rites in which they were employed. The medals publifhed by Von Hammer are faid to have been found chiefly on the fites of fettlements of the order of the Temple. However, the com- parifon of fads flated in the confeflions of many of the templars, as preferved in the official reports, with the images and fculptured cups and coffers given by Von Hammer-Piirgftall, lead to the conclufion that there is truth in the explanation he gives of the


latter, and that the templars, or at leaft fome of them, had fecretly adopted a form of the rites of Gnofticifm, which was itfelf founded upon the phallic worfhip of the ancients. An Englifh templar, Stephen de Staplebridge, acknowledged that " there were two ' profeffions ' in the order of the Temple, the firft lawful and good, the fecond contrary to the faith."^ He had been admitted to the firft of thefe when he firft entered the order, eleven years before the time of his examination, but he was only initiated into the fecond or inner myfteries about a year afterwards ; and he gives almoft a pidurefque defcription of this fecond initiation, which occurred in a chapter held at ' Dineflee' in Herefordfhire. Another Englifti templar, Thomas de Tocci, faid that the errors had been brought into England by a French knight of high pofition in the order.^

We have thus feen in how many various forms the old phallic, or priapic, worftiip prefented itfelf in the middle ages, and how pertinacioufly it held its ground through all the changes and de- velopments of fociety, until at length we find all the circumftances of the ancient priapic orgies, as well as the mediaeval additions, combined in that great and extenfive fuperftition — witchcraft. At all times the initiated were believed to have obtained thereby powers which were not poflefTed by the uninitiated, and they only were fuppofed to know the proper forms of invocation of the deities who were the objedls of their worftiip, which deities the Chriftian teachers invariably transformed into devils. The vows which the people of antiquity addrefled to Priapus, thofe of the middle ages addrefled to Satan. The witches' "Sabbath" was fimply the laft form which the Priapeia and Liberalia affumed in Weftern Europe, and

^ Quod duffi funt profeffiones in ordine templi, prima licita et bona, et fecunda eft contra fidem. Wilkins, Concilia, ii, 383. 2 Wilkins, ConciL, ii, 387.


in its various details all the incidents of thofe great and licentious orgies of the Romans were reproduced. The Sabbath of the witches does not appear to have formed a part of the Teutonic mythology, but we can trace it from the South through the coun- tries in which the Roman element of fociety predominated. The incidents of the Sabbath are diftindlly traced in Italy as early as the beginning of the fifteenth century, and foon afterwards they are found in the fouth of PVance. Towards the middle of that century an individual named Robinet de Vaulx, who had lived the life of a hermit in Burgundy, was arrefted, brought to a trial at Langres, and burnt. This man was a native of Artois ; he ftated that to his knowledge there were a great number of witches in that pro- vince, and he not onlylconfefled that he had attended thefe nodturnal aflembliesof the witches, but he gave the names of fome inhabitants of Arras whom he had met there. At this time — it was in the year 1459 — the chapter general of the Jacobins, or friars preachers, was held at Langres, and among those who attended it was a Jaco- bin friar named Pierre de Brouffart, who held the office of inquifitor of the faith in the city of Arras, and who eagerly liftened to the circumftances of Robinet's confeflion. Among the names men- tioned by him as having been prefent at the witches' meetings, were thofe of a proftitute named Demifelle, then living at Douai, and a man named Jehan Levite, but who was better known by the nick- name of Abbe de pen de Jens (the abbot of little fenfe). On Brouf- fart's return to Arras, he caufed both thefe perfons to be arrefted and brought to that city, where they were thrown into prifon. The latter, who was a painter, and a compofer and finger of popular fongs, had left Arras before Robinet de Vaulx had made his con- fefiion, but he was traced to Abbeville, in Ponthieu, and captured there. Confeffions were extorted from thefe perfons which compro- mifed others, and a number of individuals were committed topriion in confequence. In the fequel a certain number of them were burnt,


after they had been induced to unite in a ftatement to the following effeft. At this time, in this part of France at leaft, the term Vauderie, or, as it was then written, Vaulderie, was applied to the practice or profeffion of witchcraft. They faid that the place of meeting was commonly a fountain in the wood of Mofflaines, about a league diftant from Arras, and that they fometimes went thither on foot. The more ufual way of proceeding, however, according to their own account, was this — they took an ointment given to them by the devil, with which they annointed a wooden rod, at the fame time rubbing the palms of their hands with it, and then, placing the rod between their legs, they were fuddenly carried through the air to the place of aftembly. They found there a multitude of people, of both fexes, and of all eftates and ranks, even wealthy burghers and nobles — and one of the perfons examined declared that he had feen there not only ordi- nary ecclefiaftics, but bifhops and even cardinals. They found tables already fpread, covered with all forts of meats, and abundance of wines. A devil prefided, ufually in the form of a goat, with the tail of an ape, and a human countenance. Each firft did oblation and homage to him by offering him his or her foul, or, at leaft fome part of their body, and then, as a mark of adoration, kifled him on the pofteriors. All this time the worftiippers held burning torches in their hands. The abbot of little (^.n^e^, already men- tioned, held the office of mafter of the ceremonies at thefe meetings, and it was his duty to fee that the new-comers duly performed their homage. After this they trampled on the crofs, and fpit upon it, in defpite of Jefus and of the Holy Trinity, and per- formed other profane ads. They then feated themfelves at the tables, and after they had eaten and drunk fufficiently, they rofe and joined in afcene of promifcuous intercourfe between the fexes, in which the demon took part, afluming alternately the form of either fex, according to that of his temporary partner. Other


wicked a(5ts followed, and then the devil preached to them, and en- joined them efpecially not to go to church, or hear mafs, or touch holy water, or perform any other of the duties of good Chriftians. After this fermon was ended, the meeting was diflblved, and they feparated and returned to their feveral homes. ^

The violence of thefe witch perfecutions at Arras led to a reac- tion, which, however, was not lafting, and from this time to the end of the century, the fear of witchcraft fpread over Italy, France, and Germany, and went on increafing in intenfity. It was during this period that witchcraft, in the hands of the more zealous inqui- fitors, was gradually worked up into a great fyftem, and books of confiderable extent were compiled, containing accounts of the various pradices of the witches, and directions for proceeding againft them. One of the earlieft of thefe writers was a Swifs friar, named John Nider, who held the office of inquifitor in Swit- zerland, and has devoted one book of his Formicarium to witch- craft as it exifted in that country. He makes no allufion to the witches' Sabbath, which, therefore, appears then not to have been known among the Swifs. Early in 1489, Ulric Molitor publifhed a treatife on the fame fubjeft, under the title of T>e Pythonicis Mulieribus, and in the fame year, 1489, appeared the celebrated book, the Malleus Maleficarum^ or Hammer of Witches, the work of the three inquifitors for Germany, the chief of whom was Jacob Sprenger. This work gives us a complete and very interefting account oi witchcraft as it then exifted as an article of belief in Germany. The authors difcufs various queftions connedled with it, fuch as that of the myfterious tranfport of witches from one place to another, and they decide that this tranfport was real, and that they were carried bodily through the air. It is remarkable, how-

1 The account of the witch trials at Arras was publifhed in the iiipplcmentary additions to Monllrelet ; but the original records of the proceedings have fince been found and printed.



ever, that even the Malleus Maleficarum contains no dired: allufion to the Sabbath, and we may conclude that even then this great priapic orgie did not form a part of the Germanic creed; it was no doubt brought in there amid the witchcraft mania of the fix- teenth century. From the time of the publication o{ \k\.^ Malleus Maleficarum\int\\ the beginning of the feventeenth century, through all parts of Weftern Europe, the number of books upon forcery which iffued from the prefs was immenfe; and we muft not forget that a monarch of our own, king James I, fhone among the writers on witchcraft.

Three quarters of a century nearly had pafled fince the time of the Malleus^ when a Frenchman named Bodin, Latinifed into Bodinus, publifhed a rather bulky treatife which became from that time the text-book on witchcraft. The Sabbath is defcribed in this book in all its completenefs. It was ufually held in a lonely place, and when pofTible on the fummits of mountains or in the folitude of forefts. When the witch prepared to attend it, fhe went to her bedroom, ftripped herfelf naked, and anointed her body with an ointment made for that purpofe. She next took a flafF, which alfo in many cafes fhe anointed, and, placing it between her legs and uttering a charm, fhe was carried through the air, in an in- credibly fhort fpace of time, to the place of meeting. Bodin dif- cuffes learnedly the queftion whether the witches were really carried through the air corporeally or not, he decides it in the affirma- tive. The Sabbath itfelf was a great alTemblage of witches, of both fexes, and of demons. It was a point of emulation with the vifitors to bring new converts with them, and on their arrival they prefented thefe to the demon who prefided, and to whom they offered their adoration by the unclean kifs upon his pofleriors. They next rendered an account of all the mifchief they had perpe- trated fince the previous meeting, and received reward or reproof according to its amount. The devil, who ufually took the form


of a goat, next diftributed among them powders, unguents, and other articles to be employed in fimilar evil doings in future. The worfhippers now made offerings to the devil, confiding of fheep, or other articles, or, in fome cafes, of a little bird only, or of a lock of the witches' hair, or of fome other equally trifling obje6l. They were then obliged to feal their denial of the Chrifcian faith by trampling on the crofs and blafpheming the faints. The devil then, or in the courfe of the meeting, had fexual intercourfe with the new witch, placed his mark upon fome concealed part of her body, very commonly in her fexual parts, and gave her a familiar or imp, who was to be at her bidding and affifl in the perpetration of evil. All this was what may be called the bufinefs of the meet- ing, and when it was over, they all went to a great banquet, which was fet out on tables, and which fometimes conltlled of fumptuous viands, but more frequently of loathfome or unfubftantial food, fo that the guefts often left the meeting as hungry as though they had tailed nothing. After the feaft they all rofe from the table to dance, and a fcene of wild and uproarious revelry followed. The ufual dance on this occafion appears to have been the carole o^ \\\^ middle ages, which was no doubt the common dance of the pea- fantry; a party, alternately a male and a female, held each other's hands in a circle, with this peculiarity that, whereas in ordinary life the dancers turned their faces inward into the circle, here they turned them outwards, fo that their backs were towards the interior of the circle. It was pretended that this arrangement was defigned to prevent them from feeing and recognizing each other; but others fuppofed that it was a mere caprice of the evil one, who wifhed to do everything in a form contrary to that in which it was ufually done by Chriftians, Other dances were introduced, of a more violent, and fome of them of an obfcene, charadler. The fongs, too, which were fung in this orgie were either obfcene or vulgarly ridiculous. The mufic was often drawn from burlefque


inftruments, fuch as a ftick or a bone for a flute, a horfe's fkull for a lyre, the trunk of a tree for a drum, and a branch for a trumpet. As they became excited, they became more licentious, and at lafl; they abandoned themfelves to indifcriminate fexual inter- courfe, in which the demons played a very adive part. The meet- ing feparated in time to allow the witches, by the fame expeditious conveyance which brought them, to reach their homes before the cock crowed.^

Such is the account of the Sabbath, as defcribed by Bodin ; but we have reviewed it briefly in order to defcribe this ftrange fcene from the much fuller and more curious narrative of another Frenchman, Pierre de Lancre. This man was a confeiller du roi, or judge, in the parliament of Bordeaux, and was joined in 1609 with one of his colleagues in a commiflion to proceed againft persons accufed of forcery in Labourd, a diftrid: in the Bafque provinces, then cele- brated for its witches, and apparently for the low fl:ate of morality among its inhabitants. It is a wild, and, in many parts, defolate region, the inhabitants of which held to their ancient fuperftitions with great tenacity. De Lancre, after arguing learnedly on the nature and charadler of demons, difcufl!es the queftion why there were fo many of them in the country of Labourd, and why the inhabitants of that diftrid were fo much addifted to forcery. The women of the country, he fays, were naturally of a lafcivious tem- perament, which was fliown even in their manner of drefling, for he defcribes their head-drefs as being Angularly indecent, and de- fcribes them as commonly expofing their perfon very immodefl:ly.^ He adds, that the principal produce of this country confifted of

1 The firll edition of the work of Bodin, De la Demonomanie des Sorciers, was publifhed at Paris, in 4to, in i 580. It. went through many editions, and was tranf- lated into Latin and other languages.

2 Et pour le commun des femmes, en quelques lieux, voulant faire les martiales, elles portent certains tourions ou morrions indecens, et d'une forme fi peu feante.


apples, and argues thence, it is not very apparent why, that the women partook of the character of Eve, and yielded more eafily to temptation than thofe of other countries. After having fpent four months in dealing out rather feverely what was then called " juftice " to thefe ignorant people, the two commiflioners returned to Bordeaux, and there De Lancre, deeply ftruck with what he had (een and heard, betook himfelf to the ftudy of witchcraft, and in due time produced his great work on thefubjed, to which he gave the title of Tableau de V Inconjlance des Mauvais Anges et Demons} Pierre de Lancre writes honeftly and confcientioufly, and he evidently believes everything he has written. His book is valuable for the great amount of new information it contains, derived from the confeffions of the witches, and given apparently in their own words. The fecond book is devoted entirely to the details of the Sabbath.

It was ftated by the witches in their examinations that, in times back, they had appointed Monday to be the day, or rather night, of affembly, but that in their time they had two nights of meeting in the week, thofe of Wednefday and Friday. Although fome ftated that they had been carried to the place of meeting in the middle of the day, they moftly agreed in faying that the hour at which they were carried to the Sabbath was midnight. The place ofaftenbly was ufually chofen at a fpot where roads crofted, but this was not always the cafe, for De Lancre" tells us that they were

qu'on diroit que c'ell plulloft I'armet de Priape que celuy du dieu Mars ; leur coeffure femble tefmoigner leur defir, car les veulves portent le morrion fans creile pour marquer que le mafic leur defFault. Et en Labourt les femmes montlrcnt lour derriere tellement que tout rornementde leur cotillons pliflez ell derriere, et afin qu'il foit veu elles retroulTent leur robbe et la mettcnt fur la tcile et fe couvrent juf- qu'aux yeux. De Lancre, Inconjlance des Demons, p. 40.

^ 4to. Paris, 161 z. A new and improved edition appeared in 161 3.

2 II a aufli accoullume les tenir en quelque lieu defert et fauvage, comme au milieu


accuftomed to hold their Sabbath in fome lonely and wildlocality,as in the middle of a heath, which was feleded efpecially for being far from the haunts or habitations of man. To this place, he fays, they gave the name of Aquelarre, which he interprets as meaning Lane de Bouc, that' is, the heath of the goat, meaning that it was the place where the goat, the ufual form affumed by Satan, con- voked his aflemblies. And he goes on to exprefs his opinion that thefe wild places were the original fcenes of the Sabbath, though fubfequently other places had been often adopted. " For we have heard more than fifty witnefles who affured us that they had been at the Goat's Heath to the Sabbath held on the mountain of La Rhune, fometimes on the open mountain, fometimes in the chapel of the St. Efprit, which is on the top of it, and fome- times in the church of Dordach, which is on the borders of La- bourd. At times they held it in private houfes, as when we held the trial, in the parifh of St. Pe, the Sabbath was held one night

in our hotel, called Barbare-nena, and in that of Mafter

de Segure, afleflbr-criminal at Bayonne, who, at the fame time

d'une lande ; et encore en lieu du tout hors de paffage, de voifinage, d'habitation, et de rencontre : et communement ils I'appellent Aquelarre, qui fignifie Lane de Bouc, comme qui dirait la lane ou lande oii le Bouc convoque fes aflemblees. Et de faifl les forciers qui confeflent, nomment le lieu pourlachofe, etlachofeoul'afTemblee pour le lieu : tellement qu'encore que proprement Lane de Bouc, foit le Sabbat qui fe tient es landes, fi eil-ce qu'ils appellent auffi bien Lane de Bouc le Sabbath qui fe tient es eglifes et es places des villes, parroiffes, maifons, et autres lieux: parce qu'a mon advis les premiers lieux qui furent defcouverts, ou les diftes aflemblees fe faifoyent, furent es landes, pour la commodite du lieu. Et d'autant qu'on y voit le plus de ces boucs, chevres, et autres animaux femblables. Car nous avons ouy plus de cinquante tefmoins qui nous ont affeure avoir efte a la Lane de Bouc, au Sabbat fur la montagne de la Rhune, parfois a rentour,parfois dans la chappelle mefme du S. Efprit qui ell au deffus, et parfois dans I'eglife de Dordach, qui eft fur les lifieres de Labourt : parfois es maifons particulieres, comme quand nous leur faifions le proces en la parroifle de Sainft-Pe, le Sabbat fe tint une nuift dans noftre hoilel, appelle de Barbare-nena, et en celuy de Maiftre de Segure, aflefleur


when we were there, made a more ample inquifition againft certain witches, by authority of an arrcfl: of the parliament of Bordeaux. Then they went the fame night to hold it at the refidence of the lord of the place, who is the Sieur d'Amou, and in his caftle of St. Pc. But we have not found in the whole country of Labourd any other parifh but that of St. Pc where the devil held the Sabbath in private houfes."

The devil is further defcribed as feeking for his places of meeting, befides the heaths, old decayed houfes, and ruins of old caftles, efpecially when they were fituated on the fummits of mountains. An old cemetery was fometimes feleded, where, as De Lancre quaintly obferves, there were " no houfes but the houfes of the dead," efpecially if it were in a folitary fituation, as when attached to folitary churches and chapels, in the middle of the heaths, or on the tops of cliffs on the fea fhore, fuch as the chapel of the Portu- guefe at St. Jean de Luz, called St. Barbe, fituated fo high that it ferves as a landmark to the fhips approaching the coaft, or on a high mountain, as La Rhune in Labourd, and the Puy de Dome in Perigord, and other fuch places.

criminel a Bayonne, lequel faifoit en mefme temps que nous y eftions une plus ample inquifition contre certaines forcieres, en vertu d'un arrell de la Cour de Parlement de Bourdeaux. Puis s'en allerent en mefme nuift le tenir chez le feigneur du lieu, qui ell le Sr. d'Amou, et en fon challeau de Sainft-Pe. Et n'avons trouve en tout le pays de Labourt aucune autre parroifle que cclle de Sainft-Pe, ou le Diablc tint le Sabbat es maifons particulieres.

II cherche auffi parfois, outre les landes, de vieilles mazures et ruines de vieux chafteaux, afliz fur les coupeaux des montagnes ; parfois d'autres lieux folitaircs, ou, pour toutes maifons, il n'y a que des maifons des morts, qui font les cimetieres, et encore les plus efcartez, commes pres des eglifes ou chappelles feules, ou plantees au milieu d'une lande ou defert, ou fur une haute colle de la mcr, comme la chappelle des Portugais a Sain6l Jean de Luz appellee de Sainfte Barbe, fi haut montee qu'elle fert d'echauguete ou de phare pour les vaifleaux qui s'cn approchent, ou fur une haute montagne, comme la Rhune en Labourt et le Puy de Dome en Perigort, et autres lieux femblables. Tableau de P Inconjlance, p. 65.


At thefe meetings, fometimes, but rarely, Satan was abfent, in which cafe a little devil took his place. De Lancre^ enumerates the various forms which the devil ufually alTumed on thefe occa- fions, with the remark that thefe forms were as numerous as "his movements were inconftant, full of uncertainty, illufion, deception, and impofture." Some of the witches he examined, among whom was a girl thirteen years of age, named Marie d'Aguerre, faid that at thefe affemblies there appeared a great pitcher or jug in the middle of the Sabbath, and that out of it the devil iflued in the form of a goat, which fuddenly became fo large that it was " fright- ful," and that at the end of the Sabbath he returned into the pitcher. Others defcribed him as being like the great trunk of a tree, without arms or feet, feated in a chair, with the face of a great and frightful looking man. Others fpoke of him as re- fembling a great goat, with two horns before and two behind, thofe before turned up in the femblance of a woman's perruque. Ac- cording to the moft common account, De Lancre fays he had three horns, the one in the middle giving out a flame, with which he ufed at the Sabbath to give both light and fire to the

1 Refte maintenant, puis qu'il a comparu, d'en fgavoir la forme, et en quel eftat il a accoullume de fe reprefenter et faire voir efdiftes aflemblees. II n'a point de forme conftante, toutes fes aflions n'eftans que mouvements inconllans pleins d' incertitude, d'illufion, de deception, et d'impofture.

Marie d'Aguerre aagee de treize ans, et quelques autres, depofoient, qu'efdiftes aflemblees il y a une grande cruche au milieu du Sabbat d'ou fort le Diable en forme de bouc : qu'eiknt forty il devient fi grand qu'il fe rend efpouvantable : et que le Sabbat finy il rentre dans la cruche.

D'autres difent qu'il eil comme un grand tronc d'arbre obfcur fans bras et fans picds, affis dans une chaire, ayant quelque forme de vifage d'homme, grand et affreux.

D'autres qu'il ell comme un grand bouc, ayant deux cornes devant et deux en derriere : que celles de devant fe rebraflent en haut comme la perruque d'une femme. Mais le commun eil qu'il a feulement trois cornes, et qu'il a quelque efpece de lumiere en celle du milieu, de laquelle il a accoullume au Sabbat d'efclairer et donner du feu et de la lumiere, mefme a ces forcieres, qui tiennent quelques chandelles


witches, Tome of whom who had candles lit them at his horn, in order to hold them at a mock fervice of the mafs, which was one of the devil's ceremonies. He had alfo, fometimes, a kind of cap or hat over his horns. "He has before him his member hanging out, which he exhibits always a cubit in length ; and he has a great tail behind, with a form of a face under it, with which face he does not utter a word, but it ferves only to offer to kifs to thofe he likes, honouring certain witches of either fex more than the others." The devil, it will be obferved, is here reprefented with the fymbol ot Priapus. Marie d' Afpilecute, aged nineteen years, who lived at Handaye, depofed that the firft time fhe was prefented to the devil file kiffed him on this face behind, beneath a great tail, and that fhe repeated the kifs three times, adding that this face was made like the muzzle of a goat. Others said that he was ihaped like a great man, " enveloped in a cloudinefs, becaufe he would not be feen clearly," and that he was all "flambovant," and had a face red like an iron coming out of the furnace. Corneille Brolic, a lad of twelve vears of age, faid that when he was firft introduced to him he had the human form, with four horns on his head, and without

alumees aux ceremonies de la mefle qu'ils voulent contrefaire. On luy voit aulTi quelque efpece de bonet ou chapcau au deflus de fes cornes. II a au devant Ton membre tire et pendant, et Ic monilre tousjours long d'une coudee, et une grande queue au derriere, et une forme de vilage au deflbubs : duquel vifage il ne profere au- cune parole, ains luy fert pour le donner a baifer a ceux que bon luv femble, honorant certains forciers ou forcieres plus les uns que les autres.

Marie d' Afpilecute, habitante de Handaye, aagee dc 19 ans, depofc. Que la pre- miere fois qu'ellc luy fut prefcntee clle le baifa a ce vifage de derriere au defToubs d'une grande queue : qu'elle I'y a baife par trois fois, et qu'il avoit auiTi cc vifage faift commc le mufeau d'un bouc.

D'autres difent qu'il ell en forme d'un grand homme veiUi tcnebreufement, et qui ne veut eftre veu claircment, fi bien qu'ils difent qu'il eft tout flamboyant, et le vifage rouge commc un fer fortant de la fournaife.

Corneille Brolic aage de 12 ans, dift. Que lorfqu'il luv fut prelcntc il eftoit en forme d' homme, ayant quatre cornes en la tefte, et fans bras, et aflis dans une chairc,



arms. He was feated in a pulpit, with fome of the women, who were his favourites, always near him. "And they are all agreed that it is a great pulpit, which feems to be gilt and very pompous." Janette d'Abadie, of Siboro, fixteen years old, faid that Satan had a face before and another behind his head, as they reprefent the god Janus. De Lancre had alfo heard him defcribed as a great black dog, as a large ox of brafs lying down, and as a natural ox in repofe.

Although it was ftated that in former times the devil had ufually appeared in the form of a ferpent, — another coincidence with the priapic worfhip, — it appears certain that in the time of De Lancre his favourite form of fhowing himfelf was that of a goat. At the opening of the Sabbath the witches, male or female, prefented for- mally to the devil thofe who had never been at the Sabbath before, and the women efpecially brought to him the children whom they allured to him. The new converts, the novices, were made to re- nounce Chrift, the Virgin Mary, and the faints, and they were then re-baptized with mock ceremonies. They next performed their worfhip to the devil by kiffing him on the face under the tail, or otherwife. The young children were taken to the edge of a ftream — for the fcene was generally chofen on the banks of a ftream — and white wands were placed in their hands, and they were entrufted with the care of the toads which were kept there, and which were of importance in the fubfequent operations of the witches. The re- nunciation was frequently renewed, and in fome cafes it was required

avec quelques femmes de fes favorites tousjours pres de luy. Et tous font d' accord que c'eil une grande chaire qui femble doree et fort pompeufe.

Janette d'Abadie de Siboro, aagee de 16 ans, dit qu'il avoit un vifage devant, et un vifage derriere la tefte, comme on peint le dieu Janus.

J'ai veu quelque procedure, eftant a la Tournelle, qui le peignoit au Sabbat comme un grand Icvrier noir : parfois comme un grand boeuf d'airain couche a terre, comme un boeuf naturel qui fe repofe. Tableau de l' Incorijiance, p. 67.


every time the witch attended the Sabbath. Janette d'Abadie, a girl of fixtcen, laid that he made her repeatedly go through the ceremony of killing him on the face, and afterwards on the navel, then on the virile member, and then on the pofteriors/ After re- baptifm, he put his mark on the body of his vidim, in fome covered part where it was not likely to be feen. In women it was often placed on or within the fexual parts.

De Lancre's account of the proceedings at the Sabbath is very full and curious.'- He fays that it "refembled a fair of merchants mingled together, furious and in tranfports, arriving from all parts — a meeting and mingling of a hundred thoufand fubjeds, fudden and tranfitory, novel, it is true, but of a frightful novelty, which offends the eye and fickens you. Among these fame fubjeds fome are real, and others deceitful and illulbry. Some are pleafing (but very little), as are the little bells and melodious inftruments of all forts, which only tickle the ear and do not touch the heart at all, confiding more in noife which amazes and ftuns than in harmony which pleafes and rejoices, the others difpleafing, full of deformity and horror, tending only to defolation, privation, ruin, and deftrudion, where the perfons become brutifh and transformed to beafts,Iofing their fpeech while they are in this condition, and the beafts,on the contrary, talk,

' Sur quov elle adjoulle une chofe notable, que bien ibuvent il luy taifoit bailer Ion viiage, puis le nombril, puis le membre viril, puis Ton derriere. De Lancre, De P InconJJance, p. 72.

2 Le Sabbat eft. comme une foire de marchands meflez, furieux et tranlportez, qui arrivent de toutes parts, un rencontre et meflange de cent mille fubjefts foudains et tranfitoires, nouveaux a la verite, mais d'une nouveaute effroyable qui offence I'ocil et foubfleve le coeur. Parmy ces mefmes fubjefts il s'en voit de reels, et d'autres prelligieux et illulbires : aucuns plaifans (mais fortpeu), comme font les clochettes et inftrumens melodieux qu'on y entend de toutes fortes, qui ne chatouillcnt que I'oreille, et ne touchent rien au coeur : confiftant plus en bruit qui eftourdit et eftonne, qu'en harmonic qui plaife et qui resjouiile ; les autres deplailans, pleins de difformite et d'horreur, ne tendant qu'a diflblution, privation, ruine, et deftrudion, ou les per-


and feem to have more reafon than the perfons, each being drawn out of his natural characfler."

The women, according to De Lancre, were the aftive agents in all this confufion, and had more employment than the men. They rufhed about with their hair hanging loofe, and their bodies naked; fome rubbed with the magical ointment, others not. They arrived at the Sabbath, or went from it, on their errands of mifchief, perched on a ftick or befom, or carried upon a goat or other animal, with an infant or two behind, and guided or driven on by the devil him- felf. "And when Satan will tranfport them into the air (which is an indulgence only to the moft fuperior), he fets them off and launches them up like fired rockets, and they repair to and dart down upon the faid place a hundred times more rapidly than an eagle or a kite could dart upon its prey."

Thefe women, on their arrival, reported to Satan all the mifchief they had perpetrated. Poifon, of all kinds and for all purpofes, was there the article moft in vogue. Toads were faid to form one of its ingredients, and the charge of thefe animals, while alive, was

fonnes s'y abbrutiflent et transforment en belles, perdant la parole tant qu'elles font ainfi. Et les bettes au contraire y parlent, et femblent avoir plus de raifon que les perfonnes, chacun ellant tire hors fon naturel.

Les courriers ordinaires du fabbat font les femmes, les myfteres duquel paffent par leurs mains, [plus] que par celles des homines. Or elles volent et courent efchevelees comme furies a la mode du pays, ayant la telle fi legere, qu'elles n'y peuvent foufFrir couverture. On les y voit nues, ores graiflees, ores non. Elles arrivent ou partent (car chacune a quelque infaufte et mefchante commiffion) perchees fur un bailon ou balay, ou portees fur un bouc ou autre animal, un pauvre enfant ou deux en croupe, ayant le diable ores au devant pour guide, ores en derriere et en queue comme un rude foueteur. Et lorfque Sathan les veut tranfporter en I'air (ce qui n'eil encor donne qu'aux plus fuffifantes), il les effore et eflance comme fufees bruiantes, et en la defcente elles fe rendent audit lieu et fondent bas, cent fois plus viile quun aigle ou un milan ne fgauroit fondre fur fa proye.

Ces turieufes courrieres ne portent jamais que fmiilres nouvelles, mais vrayes, car elles ne contiennent que I'hiiloire veritable des maux qu'elles ont faid. Le poifon, de


given to the children whom the witches brought with them to the Sabbath, and to whom, as a fort of enfign of office, little white rods were given, "juft fuch as they give to perfons infeded with the plague as a mark of their contagion."

The devil was the fovereign mafter of the aflembly, and appeared at it fometimes in the form of a ftinking and bearded goat, as one, I3e Lancre fays, which was efpecially repulfive to mankind. The goat, we know, was dedicated to Priapus. Sometimes he aflumed a form, if we clearly underftand De Lancre, which prefented a con- fufed idea of fomethiilg between a tree and a man, which is com- pared, for he becomes rather poetical, to the old decayed cyprefles on the fummit of a high mountain, or to aged oaks whofe heads already bear the marks of approaching decay.

When the devil appeared in human form, that form was horribly ugly and repulfive, with a hoarfe voice and an imperious manner. He was feated in a pulpit, which glittered like gold; and at his

toutes fortes et a tous ufages, eft la plus precieufe denree de ce lieu. Les enfans font

les bergers, qui gardent chacun la bergerie des crapaux, que chaquc forciere qui les niene au fabbat leur a bailie a garder, ayant chacun une gaule blanche en main ; telle qu'on bailie aux peltiterez pour marque de leur contagion.

Le diable, maillre fouverain de I'affemblee, s'y reprefente parfois en bouc puant et barbu : la plus horrible et orde figure qu'il a peu emprunter parmy tous animaux, et celuy avec lequel I'homme a le moins de commerce. II s'y trouve et s'y void quelque fois en tronc d'arbre efpouvantable en forme d'homme fombre et monilrueux: comme font ces vieux cypres furannez a la cime d'une haute montagne, ou ces chefnes chauves que la vieillelfe faid commencer a fecher par la tefte, vrayement tronc, car il y paroill efcartelle, et comme ellropiat, et fans brai', et en figure d'un geant tenebreux et objeft fort recule.

Que s'il y paroift en homme, c'eft en homme gehenne, tourmente, rouge et flamboyant comme un feu qui fort d'une fournaife ardente. Homme efface, duquel la forme ne paroill qu'a demy, avec une voix calfe, morfondue, et non articulee, mais imperieufe, bruiante, et efFroyable. Si bien qu'on ne fijauroit bonnement dire a le voir s'il ell homme, tronc, ou befte. II ell aftis dans une chaire, doree en appa- rence, mais flamboiante : la royne du fabbat a fon colle, qui ell quelque forciere qu'il


fide fat the queen of the Sabbath, one of the witches whom he had debauched, to whom he chofe to give greater honour than to the others, and whom he decked in gay robes, with a crown on her head, to ferve as a bait to the ambition of the reft. Candles of pitch, or torches, yielded a falfe light, which gave people in ap- pearance monftrous forms and frightful faces.

Here you fee falfe fires, through which fome of the demons were firft pafied, and afterwards the witches, without fufferingany pain, which, as explained by De Lancre, was intended to teach them not to fear the fire of hell. But we fee in thefe the need-fires, which formed a part of the priapic orgies, and of which we have fpoken before (p. 163). There women are prefenting to him children, whom they have initiated in forcery, and he fhows them a deep pit, into which he threatens to throw them if they refufe to renounce God and to adore Satan.

In other parts are feen great cauldrons, full of toads and vipers, hearts of unbaptized children, flefh of criminals who had been hanged, and other difgufting ingredients, of which they make pots of ointments, &c. and poifons, the ordinary articles of commerce

a debauchee, laquelle il faift paroiftre pompeufe, ornee de pluiieurs faux affiquets, et couronnee en royne, pour amorcer les autres. Donnant auffi une forme affreufe, prefque a tous ceux qui sont en cette alTemblee maudite, les vifages defquels, a la fauce lumiere de ces chandeles de poix qui s'y voyent, paroiffent tenebreux, farouches, ou voilez : et les perfonnes de taille et hauteur monftrueufe, ou de baffefle extraordinaire et deffeftueufe.

On y voit de faux feux, au travers defquels il faift paffer quelques demons, puis des forcieres, d'ou il les tire fans douleur pour les apprivoifer a ne craindre les feux de notre juftice en ce monde, n'y les feux eternels de la jullice divine en I'autre. Ou luy offre def enfans innocens enforcellez par de mechantes femmes, aufquels il reprefente des abyfmes dans lefquels il faift femblant de les precipiter, s'ils font tant foit peu les rellifs a renoncer Dieu et a I'adorer.

On y voit de grandes chaudieres pleines de crapaux et viperes, coeurs d'enfans non baptifez, chair de pendus, et autres horribles charognes, et des eaux puantes, pots de graifle et de poifon qui fe preile et fe debite a cette foire, comme ellant la plus pre-


ill this " fair." Of fuch obje<5ls, alfo, were compofed the difhes fervcd at the Sabbath tables, at which no fait was allowed, becaufc Satan wiflied everything to be infipid, mufty, and bad-tafted.

Here we fee people " dancing, either ' in long,' in couples, turned back to back, or fometimes ' in round,' all turning their backs towards the centre of the dance, the girls and women each holding by the hand their demons, who teach them movements and gcftures fo lafcivious and indecent that they would horrify the moft fhame- lefs woman in the world ; with fongs of acompofition fo brutal, and in terms and words of fuch licence and lubricity, that the eyes be- come troubled, the ears confounded, and the underftanding be- witched, at the appearance of fo many monftrous things all crowded together."

" The women and girls with whom the demons choofe to have connexion are covered with a cloud, to conceal the execrations and ordures attached to thefe fcenes, and to prevent the compaflton which others might have on the fcreams and fufferings of thefe poor wretches." In order to " mix impiety with the other abomina- tions," they pretended to perform religious rites, which were a wild

cieiife et commune marchandife qui s'y trouve. Et neantmoins ce font les meilleures viandes qu'on rencontre en leurs feftins, defquels ils ont banni le iel, parceque Sathan vcut que tout y foit infipide, relant, et de gouil deprave.

On y dance en long, deux a deux, et dos a dos, et parfois en rond, tous le dos tourne vers le centre de la dance, les fiUes et femmcs tenant chacune leurs demons par la main, lesquels leur apprennent des traifts et gelles fi laicifs et indecens, qu'ils feroyent horreur a la plus efFrontec femme du monde ; avec des chanfons d'une compofition fi brutale, et en termes et mots fi licencieux et lubriques, que les yeux le troublent, les oreilles s'eftourdifTent, et I'entendement s'cnchante, dc voir tant de chofes monllrueuies qui s'y rencontrent a la fois.

Les femmcs et filles avec lefquelles i! fe veut accoupler, Ibnt couvcrtcs d'une nuee, pour cacher les execrations et ordures qui s'y trouvent, et pour olkr la com- paflion qu'on pourroit avoir des cris et douleurs de ccs pauvres milerables. Et voulant meder I'impicte avec I'abomination du fortilcge, pour leur faire paroitlre qu'il veut qu'elles vivent avec quelque forme de religion, le fervice ou culte divin.


and contemptuous parody on the catholic mafs. An altar was raifed, and a prieft confecrated and adminiftered the hoft, but it was made of fome difgufting fubftance, and the prieft ftood with his head downwards and his legs in the air, and with his back turned to the altar. Thus all things were performed in monftrous or difgufting forms, fo that Satan himfelf appeared almoft afhamed of them.

De Lancre acknowledges that there was fome diverfity in the manner of the proceedings of the Sabbath in different countries, arifing from difference in the character of the locality, in the "mafter" who prefided, and in the various humours of thofe who attended. " But all well confidered, there is a general agreement on the principal and moft important of the more ferious ceremonies. "Wherefore, I will relate what we have learnt by our trials, and I will fimply repeat what fome notable witches depofed before us, as well as to the formalities of the Sabbath, as to all that was ufually feen

qu'il s'eflaye de contrefaire ou reprefenter, eft fi fauvage et deregle, et hors de tout fens commun, que le faux facrificateur ayant drefle quelque autel, faift femblant d'y dire quelque forme de mefle, pour fe moquer des chreftiens : Et y faift paroiftre quelque hoftie, faidle de quelque puante matiere noire et enfuinee, ou il eft peint en bouc. Ce faux preftre a la tefte en has, et les pieds contremont, et le dos ignomini- eufement tourne vers I'autel. Enfin on y voit en chaque chofe ou aftion des repre- fentations fi formidables, tant d'abominables objefts, et tant de forfaidls et crimes execrables, que I'air s'infefteroit fi je les vouloy exprimer plus au long : Etpeuton dire fans mentir, que Satan mefme a quelque horreur de les commettre. Car outre la nuee de la quelle il voile fes accouplemens, il tient les enfans efloignez, de peur de les rebutter pour jamais par 1' horrible veue de tant de chofes. Et plufieurs per- fonnes voilees, pour tenir mine de grandeur, afin qu'on ne les voye rougir ni paflir de la grandeur de cent mille maux, qu'on y voit commettre a tous momens.

A la vcrite la defcription du fabbat qui fe faift en diverfes contrees femble eftre un peu diverfe. La diverfite des lieux ou il fe tient, du maiftre qui y prefide, tout divers et tout variable, et les diverfes humeurs de ceux qui y font appellez, font la diverfite. Mais tout bien confidere on eft d'accord pour le principal et pour le plus important des ceremonies plus ferieufes. C'eft pourquoy je raporteray ce que nous avons apprins par nos procedures, et diray fimplement ce que quelques notables forcieres en ont depofe devant nous, tant fur la forme du fabbat que fur tout ce qu'on a accouf-


there, without changing or altering anything in what they depofed, in order that every one may feled: what he likes."

The firft witnefs adduced by De Lancre is not one belonging to his own time, but dating back as far as the i 8th of December, i 567, and he had obtained a copy of the confeffion. Eftcbene de Cambrue, of the parifh of Amou, a woman twenty-five years of age, faid that the great Sabbath was held four times a year, in derifion of the four annual feftivals of the Church. The little affemblies, which were held in the neighbourhood of the towns or parifhes, were attended only by thofe of the locality; they were called "paftimes," and were held fometimes in one place and fometimes in another, and there they only danced and frolicked, for thedevil didnotcomethere in all his ftate as at the great affemblies. They were, in fadl, the greater and lefTer Priapeia. She faid that the place of the grand convoca- tion was generally called the " Lanne de Bouc" (the goat's heath), where they danced round a flone, which was planted in the faid place, (perhaps one of the fo-called Druidical monuments,) upon which was feated a great black man, whom they called " Mon- fieur." Each perfon prefent kiffed this black man on the pofleriors.

tume d'y voir, fans rien changer n'v alterer de leur depofition, afin que chacun en prenne ce qu'il luy plaira.

Je commenceray par une fort ancienne depofition que j'ay trouvee puis peu de jours, d'une Eftebene de Cambrue, aagee de 25 ans, de la paroifTe d'Amou, du 18 Decembre 1567, qui marque que deflors cette pauvre parroifle en eftoit deja infeftee: qui dift que les forcieres n'alloient en la grande aflemblee et au grand Sabbat que quatre fois I'annee, en derifion des ceremonies que I'eglife celebre les quatre felles annuelles. Car les petites aflemblees qui fe font pres des villes ou parroifTes, ou il n'y va que ceux du lieu, ils les appcllent les efbats, et fe font ores en un lieu de ladite parroifle, ores en un autre, ou on ne faift que fauter et folaftrcr, le diable n'y eflant avec tout fon grand arroy, comme au.v grandes aflem- blees. Que le lieu de ceflc grande convocation s'appelle gencralcmcnt par tout le pays la Lanne du Bouc. Ou ils i"c mettent a dancer a I'cntour d'une picrre, qui eft plantee audit lieu, fur laquelle eft aflis un grand homme noir, qu'elles



She faid that they were carried to that place on an animal which fometimes refembled a horfe and at others a man, and they never rode on the animal more than four at a time. When arrived at the Sabbath, they denied God, the Virgin, "and the reft," and took Satan for their father and protedor, and the fhe-devil for their mother. This witnefs defcribed the making and fale of poifons. She faid that fhe had feen at the Sabbath a notary, whofe name fhe gave, whofe bufinefs it was to denounce thofe who failed in attendance. When on their way to the Sabbath, however hard it might rain, they were never wet, provided they uttered the words, //aut la coude^ ^illet^ becaufe then the tail of the beaft on which they were mounted covered them fo well that they were fheltered from the rain. When they had to make a long journey they faid thefe words : Pic fuber hoeilhe^ en ta la lane de bouc bien marrecoueille.

A man feventy-three years of age, named Petri Daguerre, was brought before De Lancreand his fellow commiffioners at Uftarits; two witnefTes aflerted that he held the office of mafter of the cere-

appellent Monfieur, et chacun de rafTemblee luy va baifer le derriere. Et fe font porter jufqu' audit lieu, fur une belle, qui femble parfois un cheval, et parfoys un homme ; et ne montent jamais plus haut de quatre fur ces montures qui portent ainfi au Sabbat. La ils renient Dieu, la Vierge, et le refle, et prennent Satan pour leur pere et protefteur, et la diablefle pour leur mere. Qu'aucuns font la du poifon, defquels les autres le vent acheter, lequel eft fai£l de crapaux, avec une langue de boeuf ou vache, et une chevre et des oeufs couvez et pourris, et de la cervelle d'enfant, et le mettent cuire dans un pot. Di£l qu'elle a veu au Sabbat un notaire qu'elle nomme, lequel a accouftume de lever les defauts de celles qui ont manque de fe trouver au Sabbat, et dift qu'encore qu'il pleuft a pleins feaux, lorfqu'on eft en chemin pour y aller, on ne fe moiiille point, pourveu qu'on die ces mots, Haut la coude, fillet, parce qu'alors la queue de la befte fur laquelle ils vont au Sabbat les couvre fi bien, qu'ils ne fe moiiillent point. Et quand ils font un long chemin, ils difent tels mots: Pic fuber hoeilhe, en ta la lane de bouc bien ni arrecoueille. En la procedure d'Uftarits, qui eft le fiege de la juftice de Labourt, faifant le procez a Petri Daguerre, aage de feptante trois ans, lequel depuis a efte execute a mort


monies and governor of the Sabbath, and that the devil gave him a gilt ftaff, which he carried in his hand as a mark of authority, and arranged and direded the proceedings. He returned the ftafF to Satan at the clofe of the meeting.

One Leger RivafTeau confefled that he had been at the Sabbath twice without adoring the devil, or doing any of the things required from the others, because it was part of his bargain, for he had given the half of his left foot for the faculty of curing, and the right of being prefent at the Sabbath without further obligation. He faid " that the Sabbath was held about midnight, at a meeting ofcrofs roads, moft frequently on the nights of Wednefday and Friday; that the devil chofe in preference the ftormieft nights, in order that the winds and troubled elements might carry their powders farther and more impetuoufly ; that two notable devils prefided at their Sabbaths, the great negro, whom they called mafter Leonard, and another little devil, whom mafler Leonard at times fubftituted in his place, and whom they called mafher Jean Mullin ; that they adored the grand mafter, and that, after having

comme infigne forcier, deux tefmoins luy maintindrent qu'il eftoit le maiftredes cere- monies et gouverneur du Sabbat. Que le Diable luy mettoit en main un bafton tout dore, avec lequel, comme un maillre de camp, il rengeoit et les perfonncs et toutes chofes au Sabbat : et qu'iceluy finy il rendoit ce ballon au grand maiilre de I'af- femblee.

Leger Rivafl'eau confefl'a en la Cour qu'il avoit eile au Sabbat par deux fois, fans adorer le Diable ny faire comme les autres, parcequ'il avoit ainfi faift Ton pa6le avec luy, et bailie la moitie de Ion pied gauche pour avoir la faculte de guerir, et la liberte de voir le Sabbat fimplement fans eilre oblige a autre chofe. Et difoit que le Sabbat fe faifoit prefque tousjours environ la minuit, a un carrefour, le plus fouvent la nuirt du Mercredy et du Vendredy : que le diable cherchoit la nuid la plus orageufe qu'il pouvoit, afin quelesventset les orages portaflent plus loingetplus impetueufement leurs poudres ; que deux diables notables prefidoient en ces Sabbats, le grand Negre qu'on appelloit mairtre Leonard, et un autre petit diable que maiftre Leonard fubrogeoit quel- quefois en ia place, qu'ils appellent maiilre Jean Mullin; qu'on adoraitlegrand maiilre.


kifled his pofteriors, there were about fixty of them dancing without drefs, back to back, each with a great cat attached to the tail of his or her fhirt, and that afterwards they danced naked ; that this mafter Leonard, taking the form of a black fox, hummed at the beginning a word ill articulated, after which they were all filent."

Some of the witches examined fpoke of the delight with which they attended the Sabbath. Jeanne Dibaffbn, a woman twenty- nine years old, faid that the Sabbath was the true Paradife, where there was far more pleafure than can be exprefTed ; that thofe who went there found the time fo fhort by reafon of the pleafure and enjoyment, that they never left it without marvelous regret, fo that they looked forward with infinite impatience to the next meeting.

Marie de la Ralde, " a very handfome woman twenty-eight years of age," who had then abandoned her connexion with the devil five or fix years, gave a full account of her experience of the Sabbath. She faid fhe had frequented the Sabbaths from the time fhe was ten years old, having been firfl; taken there by MarifTans, the wife of Sarrauch, and after her death the devil took her there himfelf

et qu'apres qu'on luy avoit baife le derriere, ils eftoient environ foixantequi dangoient fans habits, dos-a-dos, chacun un grand chat attache a la queue de la chemife, puis ils dangoient tous nuds : que ce maiftre Leonard prenant la forme d'un renard noir bourdonnoitau commencement une parole mal articulee, et qu'apres cela tout le monde eftoit en filence

Jeanne Dibaffon, aagee de vingt neuf ans, nous dift que le Sabbat eiloit le vray Paradis, oil il y a beaucoup plus de plaifir qu'on n'en peutexprimer : que ceux qui y vent trouvent le temps fi court, a force de plaifir et de contentment, qu'ils n'en peuvent sortir fans un merveilleux regret, demaniere qu'illeurtarde infiniment qu'ils n'y reviennent.

Marie de la Ralde, aagee de vingt huidl ans, tres-belle femme, laquelle a qaitte cette abomination puis cinq ou fix ans, depofe qu'elle a efte forciere et frequente les Sabbats puis I'aage de dix ans, y ayant efte menee la premiere fois par Mariffans femme de Sarrauch, et apres fon decez le Diable I'ymenoit luy mefme. Que la premiere fois


That the firft time fhe was there fhe faw the devil in the fhape of a trunk of a tree, without feet, but apparently fitting in a pulpit, with fome form of a human face, very obfcure ; but fince fhe had often feen him in man's form, fometimes red, fometimes black. That file had often feen him approach a hot iron to the children which were prefented to him, but fhe did not know if he marked them with it. That fhe had never kifTed him fince fhe had arrived at the age of knowledge, and does not know whether fhe had kifTed him before or not ; but file had feen how, when one went to adore him, he prefented fometimes his face to kifs, fometimes his pofleriors, as it pleafed him, and at his difcretion. That fhe had a fingular pleafure in going to the Sabbath, fo that every time fhe was fummoned to go there, fhe went as though it were to a wed- ding feafl ; not fo much for the liberty and licence they had there to have connexion with each other (which out of modefty fhe faid fhe had never done or feen done), but becaufe the devil had fo flrong a hold on their hearts and wills that it hardly allowed any other defire to enter. Befides that the witches believe they are going to a place where there are a hundred thoufand wonders and novelties to fee, and where they hear fo great a diverfity

qu'elle y tut, elle y vit le Diable en forme de tronc d'arbre, fans pieds, qui fembloit ellre dans une chaire, avec qiielque forme de face humaine fort tenebreufe, mais depuis elle I'a veu fouvent en forme d'homme, tantot rouge, tantot noir: qu'elle la veu fouvent approcher un fer chaud pres des enfants qu'on luy prefentoit, mais qu'elle ne fgait s'il les marquoitavec cela. Qu'elle ne I'a jamais baife puis qu'elle ell en aage de cognoiflance, et ne f^ait fi auparavant elle I'avoit baife : bien a veu que comme on le va adorer, ores il leur prel'ente le vifage a baifer, ores le derriere, comme il luy plain, et a fa difcretion. Qu'elle avoit un fingulier plaifir d'aller au Sabbat, fi bien que quand on la venoit femondre d'y aller, elle y alloit comme a nopces : non pas tant pour la liberte et licence qu'on a de s'accointer enfemble (ce que par niodellie elle didt n'avoir jamais faitny veu faire), mais parce que le Diabletenoit tellement lies leurs coeurs et leurs volontez qu'a peine y laiflbit il entrer nul autre defir: Outre que les forcieres croyent aller en quelque lieu ou il y a cent mille choles ellranges et nouvelles


of melodious inftruments that they are ravifhed, and believe them- felves to be in fome terreftrial paradife. Moreover the devil per- fuades them that the fear of hell, which is fo much apprehended, is a piece of folly, and gives them to underftand that the eternal punifhments will hurt them no more than a certain artificial fire which he caufes them craftily to light, and then makes them pafs through it and repafs without hurt. And more, that they fee there fo many priefts, their pallors, cures, vicars, and confelTors, and other people of quality of all forts, fo many heads of families, and fo many miftrefles of the principal houfes in the faid country, fo many people veiled, whom they confidered to be grandees, becaufe they concealed themfelves and wifhed to be unknown, that they believed and took it for a very great honour and good fortune to be received there.

Marie d'Afpilcouette, a girl nineteen years old, who lived at Handaye,faid that fhe had frequented the Sabbath ever fince the age of feven, and that fhe was taken there the firft time by Catherine de Moleres, who had fince been executed to death for having caufed a man's death by forcery. She faid that it was now two years fince

a voir, et y entendent tant de divers et melodieux inftruments qu'ellesfont ravies, et croyent eftre dans quelque Paradis terreftre. D'ailleurs que le Diable leur perfuade que la crainte de I'Enfer, qu'on apprehende fi fort, eft une niayferie, et leur donne a entendre que les peines eternelles ne les tourmenteront pas davantage, que certain feu artificiel qu'il leur faid cauteleufement allumer, par lequel il les faid pafter et repafler fans fouffrir aucu« mal. D'avantage qu'elles y voyent tant de preftres, leurs pafteurs, curez, vicaires, et confeffeurs, et autres gens de qualite de toute fortes, tant de chefs de famille et tant de maiftreffes des maifons principales dudi6t pais, tant de gens voilez, qu'elles prefuppofent grans parcequ'ils fe cachent et veulent eftre incognus, qu'elles croyent et prennent a tres grand honneur et a tiltre de bonne fortune d'y eftre


Marie d'Afpilcouette, habitante de Handaye, aagee de dix neuf ans, dift qu'elle a frequente les Sabbats puis I'aage de fept ans, et qu'elle y fut conduitte la premiere fois par Catherine de Moleres qui a depuis efte executee a mort, luy ayant efte maintenu, qu'elle avoit charge le haut mal par fon feul attouchement a un tort


fhe had withdrawn from her relations with Satan. That the devil appeared in the form of a goat, having a tail and under it the face of a black man, which fhewascompclled to kifs, and that this poftcrior face has not the power of fpeech, hut they were obliged to adore and kifs it. Afterwards the faid Moleres gave her {z\^\\ toads to keep. That the faid Moleres tranfported her through the air to the Sabbath, where fhe faw people dancing, with violins, trumpets, and tabors, which made a very great harmony. That in the faid aflemblies there was an extreme pleafure and enjoyment. 'Hiat they made love in full liberty before all the world. That fome were employed in cutting off the heads of toads, while others made poifon of them ; and that they made the poifon at home as well as at the Sabbath.

After defcribing the different forts of poifons prepared on thefe occafions, De Lancre proceeds to report the teftimony of other witneffes to the details of the Sabbath.' Jeannette de Belloc, called Atfoua, a damfel of twenty-four years of age, faid that fhe had been made a witch in her childhood by a woman named Oylar- chahar, who took her for the firfl: time to the Sabbath, and there prefented her to the devil ; and after her death, Mary Martin,

honnefte homme : que neantmoins il y a deux ans qu'elle s'eft retiree des liens de Satan, et qu'elle en a fecoiie le joug. Que le Diable eftoit en forme de bouc, ayant une queue et au deflbubs un vifage d'homme noir, ou elle fut contrainte le baifcr, ct n'a parole par ce vifage de derriere, qu'on luy fit adorer et baifer : puis ladifle Moleres luy donna fept crapuax a garder. Que la di£le Moleres la tranfportoit au Sabbat par I'air, ou elle voyoit dancer avec violons, trompettes, ou tabourins, qui rendoyent une tresgrande harmonic. Qu'cfdidcs aflemblecs y a un extreme plaifir ct resjouiflance. Qu'on y faift I'amour en toute liberie devant tout le monde. Que plufieurs s'emploient a couper la tefte a des crapaux, et lesautresaen faire du poifon: quon en faicft au logis auffi bien qu'au Sabbat. Tableau r hicon fiance, pp. I 19 ct

^ Jeannette de Belloc difte Atfoua, fillc de 24 ans, nous di6l que puis fon bas aage elle avoit elle fai6le forciere par une fcmmc nommcc Oylarchahar, laqucllc la mcna au Sabbat la premiere fois, et la prefenta au Diable, ct aprcs fon decez, Marie Martin,


lady of the houfe of Adamechorena, took her place. About the month of February, 1609, Jeannette confefTed to a prieft who was the nephew of madame Martin, who went to his aunt and merely enjoined her not to take the girl to the Sabbath any more. Jean- nette faid that at the folemn feftivals all kifTed the devil's pofteriors except the notable witches, who kifTed him in the face. According to her account, the children, at the age of two or three years, or as foon as they could fpeak, were made to renounce Jefus Chrift, the Virgin Mary, their baptifm, &c. and from that moment they were taught to worfhip the devil. She defcribed the Sabbath as refemb- ling a fair, well fupplied with all forts of objeds, in which fome walked about in their own form, and others were transformed, fhe knew not how, into dogs, cats, affes, horfes, pigs, and other ani- mals. The little boys and girls kept the herds of the Sabbath, con- fifting of a world of toads near a ftream, with fmall white rods, and were not allowed to approach the great mafs of the witches ; while others, of more advanced age, who were not objefts of fuffi- cient refpect, were kept apart in a fort of apprenticefhip, during

dame de la maifon d' Adamechorena, print fa place. Et d'autant qu'environ le mois de Febvrier 1609, elle s'alla confelTer a maiftre Jean de Horroufteguy, prieur de Soubernoue, nepveu de ladidle Martin, il enjoignit a fa tante de la laiffer en paix et ne la mener plus au Sabbat. Qu'es feftes folemnelles on baifoit le Diable au derriere, mais les notables forcieres le baifoient au vifage. Que les enfans environ I'aage de deux ou trois ans, et puis qu'ils f9avent parler, font la renonciation a Jefus- Chrifl, a la Sainfte Vierge, a leur Baptefme, et a tout le refle, et commencent des lors a prendre habitude a recognoiftre et adorer le Diable. Didl que le Sabbat eft comme une foire celebre de toutes fortes de chofes, en laquelle aucuns fe promenent en leur propre forme, et d'autres font transformez, ne fijayt pourquoy, en chiens, en chats, afnes, chevanx, pourceaux, et autres animaux : les petits enfans et filles gardent les troupeaux du Sabbat, qui font un monde de crapaux, pres d'un ruifleau avec des petites gaules blanches qu'on leur donne, fans les laiffer approcher du gros des autres forciers : les mediocres et ceux qui font de bon aage parmy eux, on leur permet fimplement de voir, et leur en donne-on le plaifir et I'eftonnement, les tenant comme en apprentiffage. Pour les autres il y en a de deux fortes ; aucuns


which they were only allowed to look on at the proceedings of the others. Of thefe there were two forts; fome were veiled, to make the poorer clafles believe that they were people of rank and dif- tindlion, and that they did not wifh themfelves to be known in fuch a place; others were uncovered, and openly danced, had fexual intercourfe, made the poifons, and performed their other diabolical functions; and thefe were not allowed to approach fo near " the mafter" as thofe who were veiled. The holy water ufed at the Sabbath was the devil's urine. She pointed out two of the accufed whom fhe had feen at the Sabbath playing upon the tabor and the violin. She fpoke of the numbers who were feen arriving and departing continually, the latter to do evil, the former to report what they had done. They went out at fea, even as far as Newfoundland, where their hufhands and fons went to fifh, in order to raife ftorms, and endanger their fhips. This deponent fpoke alfo of the fires at the Sabbath, into which the witches were

font voilez pour donner opinion aux pauvres que ce font des princes et grands feigneurs, et qu'aucun d'eux n'ayt horreur d'y eilre et faire ce qu'ils font en adorant le diable. . . Lesautres font decoufverts et tout ouvertement dancent, s'accouplent, font du poifon, et autres fonftions diaboliques, et ceux cy ne font fi pres du maiilre, fi favoris, ne fi employez. lis baillent I'afperges de I'urine du Diable. lis v vont a I'ofFrande, et y a veu tenir le baffin a un Efteben Detzail, lors prifonnier: et difoit-on qu'il s'en eiloit enrichy. Qu'elle y a veu jouer du tabourin a Anfugarlo de Han- daye, lequel a depuis efte execute a mort comme infigne forcier, et du violon a Gallelloue. Elle nous difoit qu'on eufl veu defloger du Sabbat et voler Tune en Fair, I'autre monter plus haut vers le ciel, I'autre defcendre vers la terre, et I'autre parfois fe precipiter dans les grands feux allumez audit lieu, comme fuzees qui font jettees par plufieurs, ou comme efclairs : I'une arrive, I'autre part, et tout a un coup plufieurspartent, plufieurs arrivent, chacunerendant comptedes vents et orages qu'elle a excite, des navires et vaiffeaux qu'elle a fait perdre : et s'en vont de Labourt, Siboro, etS. Jean de Luz, jufques k Arcachon, qui ell une des telles de I'Ocean, aufli I'appellent ils la telle de Buch, aflcs pres de Bourdeaux, et en Terre-neuve, parce- qu'elles y voyent leurs peres, leurs maris, leurs enfans, et d'autres parens, et que c'ell leur voyage ordinaire, mefme en a veu plufieurs qui notoiremcnt font en Tcrrc-neuve



thrown without fuftaining any hurt. She had feen the frequenters of the Sabbath make themfelves appear as big as houfes, but fhe had never feen them transform themfelves into animals, although there were animals of different kinds running about at the Sabbath.

Jeanette d'Abadie, an inhabitant of Siboro, of the age of fix- teen, faid that fhe was taken for the firft time to the Sabbath by a woman named Gratianne; that for the laft nine months fhe had watched and done all fhe could to withdraw herfelf from this evil influence ; that during the firfl: three of thefe months, becaufe fhe watched at home by night, the devil carried her away to the Sab- bath in open day; and during the other fix, until the i6th of September, 1609, fiie had only gone to them twice, becaufe fhe had watched, and fl:ill watches in the church; and that the lafl: time fhe was there was the 13th of September, 1609, which fhe narrated in a " bizarre and very terrible manner." It appears that, having watched in the church of Siboro during the night between Saturday and Sunday, at daybreak fhe went to fleep at home, and, during the time of the grand mafs, the devil came to her and fnatched

qu'elles menoyent au Sabbat Quant a la transformation, dift qu' encore que

parfois elles fi faflent voir hautes comme une maifon, pourtant elle n'a jamais veu aucune d' elles fe transformer en befte en fa prefence, mais feulement certaines belles courir par le Sabbat, et devenir grandes et petites, mais fi foudainement qu'elle n'en a jamais pu decouvrir la fagon. En voycy une plus fgavante.

Jeannetted'Abadie, habitantede Siboro, aagee de feize ans, depofe qu'elle futmenee la premiere fois au Sabbat par une nommee Gratianne : qu'il y a environ neuf mois qu'elle veille et faift tout ce qu'elle peut pour fe remedier : que puis les trois premiers mois defdifts neuf,parce qu'elle veilloitla nuit chez elle,le Diable la menoit tousjours au Sabbat de plain jour : et les fix mois reftans jufque au 16 Septembre 1609, elle n'y eft allee que deux fois, parce qu'elle a veille et veille encore dans I'eglife : et la derniere fois qu'elle y a efte, ce fut le i 3 de Septembre 1609, ce qu'elle conte d'une bizarre et bien terrible fagon. Car elle dift qu'ayant veille dans I'eglife de Siboro, la nuift du Samedy venant au Dimanche, le jour venu, elle s'en alia dormir chez elle, et pendant qu'on difoit la grande Mefle, le Diable lui vint arracher un Higo de cuir qu'elle portoit au col, comme font uue infinite d'autres ; qui eft une forme de main au point ferre, le


from her neck a " fig of leather which (lie wore there, as an infinity of other people did ;" this higo^ or fig, fhe defcribed as " a form of hand, with the fift clofed, and the thumb pafled between the two fingers, which they believe to be, and wear as, a remedy againll: all enchantment and witchcraft; and, becaufe the devil cannot bear this fift, fhe faid that he did not dare to carrv it away, but left it at the threfhold of the door of the room' in which fhe was deeping." This Jeanette faid, that the firft time fhe went to the Sabbath fhe faw there the devil in the form of a man, black and hideous, with fix horns on his head, and fometimes eight, and a great tail behind, one face in front and another at the back of the head, as they paint the god Jan-us. Gratianne, on prefenting her, received as her reward a handful of gold ; and then the child- vidim was made to renounce her Creator, the Virgin, the baptifm, father, mother, relatives, heaven, earth, and all that was in the world, and then fhe was required to kifs the fiend on the pofleriors. The renunciation fhe was obliged to repeat every time fhe went to the Sabbath. She added that the devil often made her kifs his face, his navel, his member, and his pofteriors. She had often {^^w the children of witches baptized at the Sabbath.

poulce palTe entre lesdeux doigts, qu'elles croyent et portent comme remede a toute fafcination et Ibrtilege : et parce que le Diable ne peut fouifrir ce poignet, elle dift qu'il ne I'ofa emporter, ains le laifla prcs du fueil de la porte de la chambre dans la- quelle elle dormoit. En revenant au commencement et a la premiere entree qu'elle fut au Sahbat, elle dit qu'elle y vid le Diable en forme d'homme noir ethideux,avec fix cornes en la telle, parfois huift, et une grande queue derriere, un vifage devant et un autre derriere la telle, comme on peint le dieu Janus: que la difte Gratianne, I'ayant prefentee, receut une poignee d'or en recompenfe, puis la fit renoncer et renier fon Createur, la Sainfte Vierge, lesSainfts, le Baptefme, pere, mere, parens, Ic ciel, la terre, et tout ce qui ell au mondc, laquelle renonciation il luy faifoit renouvcller toutes les fois qu'elle alloit au Sabbat, puis elle I'alloit bailer au derriere. Que le Diable luv faifoit baifer fouvent fon vifage, puis fon nombril, puis fon mcmbre, puis fon erriere. Qu'elle a veu fouvent baptifer des enfans au Sabbat, qu'elle nous expli-


Another ceremony was that of baptizing toads. Thefe animals perform a great part in thefe old popular orgies. At one of the Sabbaths, a lady danced with four toads on her perfon, one on each fhoulder, and one on each wrift, the latter perched like hawks. Jeanette d'Abadie went on further in her revelations in regard to ftill more objeftionable parts of the proceedings. She faid that/ with regard to their libidinous ads, fhe had feen the aflembly inter- mix inceftuoufly, and contrary to all order of nature, accufing even herfelf of having been robbed of her maidenhead by Satan, and of having been known an infinite number of times by a relation of hers, and by others, whoever would aik her. She always fought to avoid the embraces of the devil, becaufe it caufed her an extreme pain, and fhe added that what came from him was cold, and never produced pregnancy. Nobody ever became pregnant at the Sab- bath. Away from the Sabbath, fhe never committed a fault, but in the Sabbath fhe took a marvellous pleafure in thefe adis of fexual intercourfe, which fhe difplayed by dwelling on the defcrip- tion of them with a minutenefs of detail, and language of fuch obfcenity, as would have drawn a blufh from the moft depraved woman in the world. She defcribed alfo the tables covered in

qua eftre des enfans des forcieres et non autres, lefquelles ont accouftume faire pluftot baptifer leurs enfans au Sabbat, qu'en I'eglise, et les prefenter au Diable pluftoft qu'a Dieu. De P Inconjlance des Mauvais Anges, p. 128.

1 Pour I'accouplement, qu' elle a veu tout le monde fe mefler inceflueufement et contre tout ordre de nature, comme nous avons didl cy devant, s'accufant elle mefme d'avoir efte depucellee par Satan et cognue une infinite de fois par un fien parent et autres qui Ten daignoient femondre : qu'elle fuyoit I'accouplement du Diable, a caufe qu'ayant Ton membre faift en efcailles, il fait foufFrir une extrefme douleur : outre que la femence eft extremement froide, fi bien qu'elle n'engroffe jamais, ni celle des autres hommes au Sabbat, bien qu'elle foit naturelle : Que hors du Sabbat elle ne fit jamais faute, mais que dans le Sabbat elle avoit un merveilleux plaifir en ces accou- plemens autres que celui de Sathan, qu'elle difoit eftre horrible, voire elle nous tefmoignoit un merveilleux plaifir a le dire, et le conter, nommant toutes chofes par


appearance with provifions, which, however, proved either unfub- ftantial or of a difgufting nature.

This witnefs further declared that fhe had feen at the Sabbath a number of little demons without arms, who were employed in kindling a great fire, into which they threw the witches, who came out without being burnt ; and fhe had alfo feen the grand mafter of the aflembly throw himfelf into a fire, and remain there until he was burnt to powder, which powder was ufed by the witches to bewitch young children, and caufe them to go willingly to the Sabbath. She had feen priefts who were well-known, and gave the names of fome of them, performing the fervice of the mafs at the Sabbath, while the demons took their places on the altar in the forms of faints. Sometimes the devil pierced the left foot of a forcerer under the little toe, and drew blood, which he fucked, and

leur nom plus librement et efFrontement que nous ne luy ofions faire demander, chofe qui conlirme merveillcufement la realite du Sabbat. Car il ell plus vrav- femblable qu'elle fe foit accouplee au Sabbat avec des gens qu'elle nommoit, que non, que Satan les y ait fai6l voir dans Ton lift par illufion, ou qu'il les luy ait portez cor- porellement : n'ayant peu fentir cent fois (comme elle di6l) cette femence naturelle que s'accouplant corporellement et reellementavecun homme naturel qu'elle nousa nomme qui eft encore vivant. Qu'elle y a veu des tables drefl'ees avec forces vivres, mais quand on en vouloit prendre on ne trouvoit rien foubs la main, fauf quand on y avoit porte des enfans baptifcz ou non baptifez, car de ces deux elle en avoit veu fort fouvent fervir et manger : mefme un qu'on tenait eftre fils de maiftre de Lafle. Qu'on les coupe a quartiers au Sabbat pour en faire part a plufieurs parroilfes.

D'avantage dift qu'elle a veu plufieurs petits demons fans bras, allumer un grand feu, jetter des forcieres du fabbat la dedans, et, les retirant fans doaleur, le Diable leur dire qu'elles n'auroient non plus de mal du feu d'Enfer. Qu'elle a veu le grand maiilrc de I'aflemblee fe jetter dans les flammes au Sabbat, fe faire brufler jufques a ce qu'il eftoit reduit en poudre, et les grandes et infignes forcieres prendre les dites poudres pour enforceler les petits enfants et les mener au Sabbat, et en prenoient aufll dans la bouche pour ne reveler jamais; et a veu pareillement ce mauvais demon au Sabbat fe reduire tout en menus vers. Qu'elle a ouy dire fouvent melfe a quelques preftrcs et entre autres a Migualena et Bocal, veftus de rouge et de blanc : que le maiftre de I'aflemblee et autres petits demons eftoient fur I'autel en forme de fainfts : que pour


after this that individual could never be drawn to make a confef- fion ; and fhe named, as an example, a prieft named Frangois de Bideguaray, of Bordegaina, who, in faft, could not be made to confefs. She named many other perfons whom fhe had feen at the Sabbaths, and efpecially one named Anduitze, whofe office it was to fummon the witches and forcerers to the meeting.

De Lancre fays that many others, in their depofitions, fpoke of k the extreme pleafures and enjoyments experienced in thefe Sab- baths, which made men and women repair to them with the greateft eagernefs. " The woman indulged before the face of her hufband without fufpicion or jealoufy, he even frequently aded the part of procurer ; the father deprived his daughter of her virginity without fhame; the mother afted the fame part towards her fon; the brother towards his fifter ; fathers and mothers carried thither and pre- fented their children."

aller au Sabbat elle ne laiffoit d'aller a I'eglife, mais elle trembloit quand elle y voyoit faire I'eflevation, et tremble encore toutes les fois qu'elle la voit. Et quand elle fe veut approcher du crucifix, pour luy baifer les pieds, elle devient tout efperdue et troublee, fans fgavoir quelle priere elle fait, parcequ'elle voit en mefme inftant comme une perfonne noire et hideufe qui ell tout au bas et au delfoubs des pieds dudift crucifix, qui faift contenance de I'en empefcher. Quant aux forciers qui ne confelfent ny a la torture ny au fupplice, elle didl avoir veu que le Diable leur perce le pied gauche avec un poingon et leur tire un peu de fang au deflbubs du petit doigt dudift pied gauche, lequel fang il fucce, et celuy la ne confeffe jamais chofe qui con- cerne le fortilege : ce qu'elle a veu pratiquer en la perfonne de maiflre Francois de Bideguaray, preftre au lieu appelle a Bordegaina, ou le Sabbat a accouftume fe tenir, fi bien qu'elle nous a di6l qu'il ne confefferoit jamais. Qu'elle a veu au Sabbat entre une infinite qu'elle nomme et cognoift, un nomme Anduitze, qui ell celuy qui va donner les affignations aux forcieres pour fe trouver au Sabbat. . . .

Et plufieurs autres nous ont di6t que les plaifirs et la joye y font fi grands et de tant de fortes, qu'il n'y a homme ny femme qui n'y coure tres-volontiers. ... La femme fe joue en prefence de fon mary fans foupgon nijaloufie, voire il en eft fouvent le proxenete: le pere depucelle fa fille fans vergogne: la merearrache le pucelagedu fils fans crainte: le frere de la foeur ; on y voit les peres et meres porter et prefenter leurs enfans. De l' hiconjiance, p. 132.


The dances at the Sabbath were moftly indecent, including the well-known Sarabande, and the women danced in them fometimes in chemife, but much more frequently quite naked. They con- fided efpecially in violent movements ; and the devil often joined in them, taking the handfomeft woman or girl for his partner. De Lancre's account of thefe dances is fo minute and curious that it may be given in his own words. ^ " If the faying is true that never woman or girl returned from the ball as chafte as fhe went there, how unclean muft fhe return who has abandoned herfelf to the un- fortunate defign of going to the ball of the demons and evil fpirits, who has danced in hand with them, who has kifl*ed them obfcenely, who has yielded herfelf to them as a prey, has adored them, and has even copulated with them ? It is to be, in good earned, incon- ftant and fickle ; it is to be not only lewd, or even a fhamelefs whore, but to be fl:ark-mad, unworthy of the favours with which God loads her in bringing her into the world, and caufing her to be born a Chrifl:ian. We caufed in feveral places the bovs and girls to dance in the fame fafhion as they danced at the Sabbath, as much to deter them from fuch uncleannefs, by convincing them to what a degree the moft modefl: of thefe movements was filthy, vile, and unbecoming in a virtuous girl, as alfo becaufe, when

^ Et s'il ell vray ce qu'on dit que jamais femme ny fille ne revint du bal fi chafte comme elle y eft allee,combien immonde revient celle qui s'eft abandonnee, ct a prins ce mal-heureux deflain d'aller au bal des demons et mauvais efprits, qui a dance a leur main, qui les a fi falement baifez, qui s'eft donnee a eux en proye, les a adorez, et s'eft mefme accouplee avec eux ? C'eft eftre a bon efcient inconftante et volage: c'eft eftre non feulement impudique, voire putain efFrontee, mais bien folle enragee, inbigne des graces que Dieu luy avoit faidl et verfe fur elle, lors qu'il la mit au monde, et la fift naiftre chreftienne. Nous fifmes en plufieurs lieux dancer les enfans ct filles en la mefme fagon qu'elles dangoient au Sabbat, tant pour les deterrer d'une telle falete, leur faifant recognoiftre combien le plus modefte mouvement eftoit fale, vilain, et malfeant a une honnefte fille, qu'aufii par-ce qu'au confrontement la plus part des


accufed, the greater part of the witches, charged with having among other things danced in hand with the devil, and fometimes led the dance, denied it all, and faid that the girls were deceived, and that they could not have known how to exprefs the forms of dance which they faid they had feen at the Sabbath. They were boys and girls of a fair age, who had already been in the way of falvation before our commiffion. In truth fome of them were already quite out of it, and had gone no more to the Sabbath for fome time ; others were ftill ftruggling to efcape, and, held ftill by one foot, flept in the churches, confefled and communicated, in order to withdraw themfelves entirely from Satan's claws. Now it is faid that they dance always with their backs turned to the centre of the dance, which is the caufe that the girls are fo accuftomed to carry their hands behind them in this round dance, that they draw into it the whole body, and give it a bend curved backwards, having their arms half turned ; fo that moft of them have the belly commonly great, pufhed forward, and fwoUen, and a little inclining in front. I know not whether this be caufed by the dance or by the ordure and wretched provifions they are made to eat. But the fad is, they dance very feldom one by one, that is one man alone

forcieres accufees d'avoir entre autres chofes dancee a la main du Diable, et parfois mene la dance, nioyent tout, et difoient que les iilles eftoient abufees, et qu'elles n'euflent fceu exprimer les formes de dance qu'elles difoient avoir veu au Sabbat. C'eftoient des enfans et filles de bon aage, et qui eftoient desja en voye de falut avant noftre commiffion. A la verite aucunes en eftoient dehors tout a faift, et n'alloy- ent plus au Sabbat il y avoit quelque temps : les autres eftoient encore a fe debatre fur la perche, et attachez par un pied, dormoient dans les eglifes, fe confeflbient et communioient, pour s'ofter du tout des pattes de Satan. Or on dift qu'on y dance tousjours le dos tourne au centre de la dance, qui faift que les filles font fi accouf- tumees a porter les mains en arriere en cefte dance ronde, qu'elles y trainent tout le corps, et luy donnent un ply courbe en arriere, ayant les bras a demy tournez : fi bien que la plus part ont le ventre communement grand, enfle et avance, et un peu penchant fur le devant. Je ne fgay fi la dance leur caufe cela ou 1' ordure et mef- chantes viandes qu'on leur fait manger. Au refte on y dance fort peu fouvent un a


with one woman or girl, as we do in our galliards ; fo they have told and aflured us, that they only danced there three forts of branles, or brawls, ufually turning their fhoulders to one another, and the back of each looking towards the round of the dance, and the face turned outwards. The firft is the Bohemian dance, for the wan- dering Bohemians are alfo half devils; I mean thofe long-haired people without country, who are neither Egytians (gipfies), nor of the kingdom of Bohemia, but are born everywhere, as they purfue their route, and pafs countries, in the fields, and under the trees, and they go about dancing and playing conjuring tricks, as at the Sabbath. So they are numerous in the country of Labourd,on account of the eafy paflage from Navarre and Spain.

"The fecond is with jumping, as our working men pracflife in towns and villages, along the ftreets and fields; and thefe two are in round. The third is alfo with the back turned, but all holding together in length, and, without difengaging hands, they approach fo near as to touch, and meet back to back, a man with a woman ; and at a certain cadence they pufh and ftrike together immodeftly their two pofteriors. And it was alfo told us that the devil, in his

un, c'ell a dire un homme feul avec une femme ou fillc, comme nous faifons en nos gaillardes : ains elles nous ont difl et afTeure, qu'on n'y dangoit que trois fortes de branfles, communement fe tournant les efpaules I'un I'autre, et le dos d'un chafcun vifant dans le rond dc la dance, et le vifage en dehors. La premiere c'ell a la Bohe- mienne, car aufli les Bohemes coureurs font a demy diables : je dy ces long polls fans patrie, qui ne font ny ^gyptiens, ny du royaume de Boheme, ains ils naiffent par tout en chemin faifant et paffant pais, et dans les champs, et foubs les arbrcs, et font les dances et baftelages a demy comme au Sabbat. Aufli font ils frequens au paVs dc Labourt, pour I'aifance du paflagc dc Navarre et de I'Efpagne.

La feconde c'ell a fauts, comme nozartifans fontes villeset villages, par les rues et par les champs : et ces deux font en rond. Et la troifiefme ell aufli le dos tourne, mais fe tenant tous en long, et, fans fe deprendre des mains, ils s'approchent de fi pres qu'ils fe touchent, et fe rencontrcnt dos a dos, un homme avec une femme : et a certaine cadence ils fe choquent et frapent inpudcmmcnt cul centre cul. Mais aufli il nous fut dit que le Diable bizarre ne les failoit pas tous mcttrc rangement le dos tourne



ftrange humours, did not caufe them all to be placed in order, with their backs turned towards the crown of the dance, as is commonly faid by everybody ; but one having the back turned, and the other not, and fo on to the end of the dance. . . . They dance to the found of the tabor and flute,and fometimes with the long inftrument they carry at the neck, and thence ftretching to near the girdle, which they beat with a little ftick; fometimes with a violin (fiddle). But thefe are not the only inftruments of the Sabbath, for we have learnt from many of them that all forts of inftruments are feen there, with fuch harmony that their is no concert in the world to be compared to it."

Nothing is more remarkable than the fort of prurient curiofity with which thefe honeft commiffioners interrogated the witneftes as to the fexual peculiarities and capabilities of the demon, and the fort of fatisfaction with which De Lancre reduces all this to writinof.^ They all tend to fhow the identity of thefe orgies with thofe of the ancient worfhip of Priapus, who is undoubtedly figured in the Satan of the Sabbath. The young witch, Jeannette d'Abadie, told how Ihe had feen at the Sabbath men and women in promifcuous inter- courfe, and how the devil arranged them in couples, .in the moft unnatural conjunctions — the daughter with the father, the mother with her fon, the fifter with the brother, the daughter-in-law with

vers la couronne de la dance, comme communement dift tout le monde : ains I'un ayant le dos tourne, et I'autre non : et ainfi tout a fuite jufqu'a la fin de la dance. .... Or elles dancent au fon du petit tabourin et de la flufte, et parfois avec ce long inftrument qui' Is portent fur le col, puis s'allongeant jusqu'aupres de la ceinture, ils le batent avec un petit bafton : parfois avec un violon. Mais ce ne font les feuls inftrumens du Sabbat, car nous avons apprins de plufieurs qu'on y oyt toute forte d'inftrumens, avec une telle harmonic qu'il n'y a concert au monde qui le puiffe efgaler. De V hiconjlance, ^c, p. 209.

1 Jeannette d'Abadie, aagee de feize ans, dift, qu'elle a veu hommes et femmes fe mefler promifcuement au Sabbat : que le Diable leur commandoit de s'accoupler et fe joindre, leur baillant a chacun tout ce que la nature abhorre le plus, fgavoir la fille


the father-in-law, the penitent with herconfeflorjwithoutdiftindion of age, quality, or rehitionfhip, fo that fhe confeffed to having been known an infinity of times at the Sabbath by a coufin-german of her mother, and by an infinite number of others. After repeating much that fhe had faid before rehating to the impudicity of the Sab- bath, this girl faid that fhe had been deflowered by the devil at the age of thirteen — twelve was the common age for this — that they never became pregnant,either by him or by any of the wizards of the Sabbath ; that fhe had never felt anything come from the devil except the firfi: time, when it was very cold, but that with the for- cerers it was as with other men. That the devil chofe the hand- fomeft of the women and girls for himfelf, and one he ufually made his queen for the meeting. That they fuffered extremely when he had intercourfe with them, in confequence of his member being covered with fcales like thofe of a fifh. That when extended it was

au pere, le fils a la mere, la foeur au frere, la filleulle au parrain, la penitente a fon confefleur, fans diftinftion d'aage, de qualite, ni de parentelle : de forte qu'elle con- teflbit librement avoir efte connue une infinite de fois au Sabbat, par un coufin ger- main de fa mere et par une infinite d'autres : que c'ell une perpetuelle ordure, en laquelle tout le monde s'efgayoit comme elle : que hors du Sabbat elle ne fit jamais de taute : qu'elle le faifoit tout autant de fois que le Diable le luy cpmmandoit, et indiiferemment avec toute forte de gens: ayant efte depucellee au Sabbat puis I'aage de treize ans : que le Diable les conviant et forgant de faire cefte faute, foit avec luy, foit avec des gens de rencontre en ces aflemblees, la faute n'cftoit fienne : que de ces accouplemens on ne s'engroffoit jamais, foit qu'ils fuflent avec le maiftre, foit avec d'autres forciers : ce que pourtant plufieurs exemples dans nos hiftoires rendcnt ex- tremement incertain et douteux : qu'on n'y fent que deplaifir : qu'elle n'a jamais fenty qu'il euft aucune femence, fauf quand il la dcpucella qu'elle la fentit froidc, mais que cclle des autres hommes qui I'ont cognue ell naturelle : qu'il fechoifit et trie les plus belles ; et de vray toutes cellcs que nous avons veu qualificcs de cc tiltrc dc roynes eftoient doiiecs de quelque beaute plus finguliere que les autres. Si bicn que celle Dctfail a Urrogne, lorfqu'elle fut executee a mort, mourut fi defdaigncui'emcnt que le bourrcau de Bayonne, jcunc et dc belle forme, voulant cxtorqucr d'clle, comme c'ert la couftume, le baifcr du pardon, elle ne voulut jamais profaner fa belle bouche qui avoit accoullumee d'cftrc colee au dcrricrc du Diable. Did d'avantagc que, lors


a yard long, but that it was ufually twifted. Marie d'Afpilcuette, a girl between nineteen and twenty years of age, who alfo confefled to having had frequent connexion with Satan, defcribed his member as about half a yard long, and moderately large. Marguerite, a girl of Sare, between fixteen and feventeen, defcribed it as refem- bling that of a mule, and as being as long and thick as one's arm. More on this fubjedl the reader will find in De Lancre's own text, given in the note below. The devil, we are further told, preferred

que le Diable les cognoift charnellement, elles fouffrentune extreme douleur, les ayant ouyes crier, et, au fortir de I'afle, les ayant veiies revenir au Sabbat toutes fanglantes fe plaignant de douleur, laquelle vient de ce que le membre du Demon ellant faift a efcailles comme un poilTon, elles fe referrent en entrant, et fe levent et piquent en fortant : c'eft pour quoy elles fuyent femblables rencontres.

Que le membre du Diable, s'il eiloit eflendu, eft long environ d'une aulne, mais il le tient entortille et finiieux en forme de ferpent : que fouvent il interpofe quelque nuee quand il veut fe joindre a quelque femme ou fille. Qu'elle a veu le Diable avec plufieurs perfonnes au Sabbat qu'elle nous a nomme, et que fi veux taire pour cer- tain raifon. Et en fin qu'elle avoit auffi efte depucellee par luy des I'aage de treize ans, et depuis cognue plufieurs fois en forme d'homme, et en mefme fagon que les autres hommes ont accouftume de coignoiftre leurs efpoufes, mais avec une extrefme douleur, par les raifons cy deflus deduiftes : qu'elle a veu faire tous ces accouplemens une in- finite de fois, par ce que celles qui le mauvais Demon a cognues voyent fort bien quand le Diable en cognoift d'autres. Mais il a quelque vergongne de faire voir cette vilennie a celles avec lefquelles il n'a encore eu acointance : qui eft caufe qu'il leur met au devant cette nuee.

Marie d'Afpilcuette, fille de dix-neuf a vingt ans, difoit le mefme, pour ce qui eft du membre en efcailles, mais elle depofoit que lors qu'il les vouloit cognoiftre, il quitoit la forme de bouc et prenoit celle d'homme. Que les forciers au Sabbat prenoient chacun telle femme ou fille que bon luy fembloit, et a la veiie de tout le monde : qu'on n'y eft jamais refufe, et que les maris foufFrent que le Diable, ou qui que ce foit du Sabbat, jouiffe de fa femme tout devant lui, et que le mari mefme parfois s'exerce avec fa femme : que le membre du Diable eft long environ la moitie d'une aulne, de mediocre grofleur, rouge, obfcur, et tortu, fort rude et comme piquant.

En voicy d'une autre forte. Marguerite, fille de Sare, aagee de feize a dixfept ans, depofe que le Diable, foit qu'il ayt la forme d'homme, ou qu'il foit en forme de bouc, a tousjours un membre de mulct, ayant choifi en imitation celuy de cet


married women to girls, becaufe there was more fin in the connec- tion, adultery being a greater crime than fimple fornication.

In order to give ftill more truthfulnefs to his account of the Sab- bath, De Lancre caufed all the fads gathered from the confeflions of his vidlims to be embodied in apifturewhichilluftrates thefecond edition of his book, and which places the whole fcene before us fo vividly that we have had it re-engraved in facfimile as an illuftra- tion to the prefent effay.^ The different groups are, as will be feen, indicated by capital letters. At A we have Satan in his gilt pulpit, with five horns, the one in the middle lighted, for the pur- pofe of giving light to all the candles and fires at the Sabbath. B is the queen of the Sabbath, feated at his right hand, while another favorite, though in lefs degree, fits on the other fide. C, a witch prefenting a child which fi^e has feduced. D, the witches, each with her demon, feated at table. E, a party of four witches and forcerers, who are only admitted as fpedators, and are not allowed

animal comme le mieux pourveu : qu'il I'a long et gros comme le bras : que quand il veut cognoiftre quelque fille ou femme au Sabbat, comme il faift prefque a chafque affemblee, il faift paroiftre quelque forme de lid de foye, fur lequel il faift femblant de les coucher, qu'elles n'y prennent point de deplaifir, comme ont did ces premieres : et que jamais il ne paroill au Sabbat en quelque adlion que ce foit, qu'il n'ait tousjours fon inftrument dehors, de cette belle forme et mefure : tout a rebours de ce que dit Boguet, que celles de fon pais ne luy ont veu guiere plus long que le doigt et gros fimplement a proportion : fi bien que les forcieres de Labourt font mieux fervies de Satan que celles de la Franche-Conte.

Marie de Marigrane, fille de Biarrix, aagee de quinze ans, dit, Qu'il fcmble que cc mauvais Demon ait fon membre my party, moitie de fer, moitic dc chair, tout de fon long, et de mefme les genitoires, et depole I'avoir veu en cette forme pluficurs fois au Sabbat : et outre ce I'avoit ouy dire a des femmes que Satan avoit cognues : qu'il les fait crier comme des femmes qui Ibnt en mal d'enfant : et qu'il tient tousjours fon membre dehors.

Petry de Linarre did que le Diable a le membre faift de come, ou pour le moins il en a I'apparence, c'ell pourquoy il faift tant crier les femmes. De r Inconjlance, p. 223.

1 See our plate xl.


to approach the great ceremonies. F, " according to the old proverb, Apres la pance, vient la dance^' the witches and their demons have rifen from table, and are here engaged in one of the defcriptions of dances mentioned above. G, the players on inftru- ments, who furnifh the mufic to which the witches dance. H, a troop of women and girls, who dance with their faces turned out- wards from the round of the dance. I, the cauldron on the fire, to ►make all forts of poifons and noxious compounds. K, during thefe proceedings, many witches are {^^r\ arriving at the Sabbath on ftaffs and broomfticks, and others on goats, bringing with them children to offer to Satan ; others are departing from the Sabbath, carried through the air to the fea and diftant parts, where they will raife ftorms and tempefts. L, " the great lords and ladies and other rich and powerful people, who treat on the grand affairs of the Sabbath, where they appear veiled, and the women with mafks, that they may remain always concealed and unknown." Laftly, at M, we fee the young children, at fome diftance from the bufy part of the ceremonies, taking charge of the toads.

In reviewing the extraordinary fcenes which are developed in thefe witch-depofitions, we are ftruck not only with their general refemblance among themfelves, although told in different countries, but alfo with the ftriking points of identity between the proceed- ings of the Sabbath and the fecret affemblies with which the Templars were charged. We have in both the initiatory prefenta- tion, the denial of Chrift, and the homage to the new mafter, fealed by the obfcene kifs. This is juft what might be expefted. In preferving fecretly a religious worfhip after the open practice of it had been profcribed, it would be natural, if not neceffary, to require of the initiated a ftrong denial of the new and intrufive faith, with a(5bs as well as words which compromifed him entirely in what he was doing. The mafs and weight of the evidence certainly goes to prove that fuch fecret rites did prevail among the Templars,


though it is not equally evident that they prevailed throughout the order; and the fimilarity of the revelations of the witch-con- fefTions, in all countries where they were taken, feems to fhow that there was in them alfo a foundation in truth. We look upon it as not admitting of doubt, that the Priapic orgies and the other periodical afTemblies for worfhip of this defcription, which we have defcribed in an earlier part of this eflay, were continued long after the fall of the Roman power and the introdudion of the Chriftian religion. The ruftic population, moftly fervile, whofe morals or private pradices were little heeded by the other clafles of focicty, might, in a country fo thinly peopled, afTemble by night in retired places without any fear of obfervation. There they perhaps indulged in Priapic rites, followed by the old Priapic orgies, which would become more and more debafed in form, but through the effeds of exciting potions, as defcribed by Michelet,^ would have become wilder than ever. T^^^Y t)ecame, as Michelet defcribes them, the Saturnalia of the ferf The ftate of mind produced by thefe excitements would lead thofe who partook in them to believe eafily in the actual prefence of the beings they worfhipped, who, according to the Church dodrines, were only fo many devils. Hence arofe the diabolical agency in the fcene. Thus we eafily obtain all the materials and all the incidents of the witches' Sabbath. Where this older worfhip was preferved among the middle or more elevated claffes of fociety, who had other means of fecrecy at their command, it would take a lefs vulgar form, and would fhow itfelf in the formation of concealed fedts and focieties, fuch as thofe of the dif- ferent forms of Gnofticifm, of the Stadingers, of the Templars, and of other lefs important fecret clubs, of a more or lefs immoral character, which continued no doubt to exift long after what we

1 See Michelet, La Sorcicre, liv. i, c. 9, on the ufe and the efFefts of the Solanes, to which he attributes much of the delufions of the Sabbath.


call the middle ages had pafled away. As we have before in- timated, thefe mediaeval prad:ices prevailed moft in Gaul and the South, where the influence of Roman manners and fuperfl:itions was greatefl:.

The worfhip of the reproductive organs as reprefenting the fertilizing, protecting, and faving powers of nature, apart from thefe fecret rites, prevailed univerfally, as we have traced it fully in the preceding pages, and we only recur to that part of the fubjecft to ftate that perhaps the lafl: traces of it now to be found in our iflands is met with on the weftern fhores of Ireland. Off the coafl: of Mayo, there is a fmall ifland named Innifkea, the in- habitants of which are a very primitive and uncultivated race, and which, although it takes its name from a female faint (it is the tnjula Jan5la Geidhe of the Hibernian hagiographers), does not contain a Angle Catholic priefl;. Its inhabitants, indeed, as we learn from an interefliing communication to Notes and ^eries by Sir J. Emerfon Tennent,^ are mere idolaters, and their idol, no doubt the reprefentative of Priapus, is a long cylindrical ftone, which they call Neevougee. This idol is kept wrapped in flannel, and is entrufl:ed to the care of an old woman, who ad:s as the priefl:efs. It is brought out and worfliipped at certain periods, when fl:orms difliurb the fifliing, by which chiefly the population of the ifland obtain a living, or at other times it is expofed for the purpofe of raifing fl:orms which may caufe wrecks to be thrown on the coafl: of the ifland. I am informed that the name Neevougee is merely the plural of a word fignifying a canoe, and it may perhaps have fome reference to the calling of fifliermen.

^ Notes atid ^eries, for 1852, vol. v, p. 121.


CANTHUS, medal of, 71. Adamiani or Adamites, mediaeval fert, and their praftices, 172. Adel in Yorkfhire, objefts with Priapic emblems found there, 124. i^fchylus, 80. JEl'erma, medals of, 80. Agricultural feilivals, 154. Aix, phallus found there, 119. Albigenfes, early Chriilian feft, 177. Ammon, Pan of the Greeks, 38, 61. Amulets, Priapic, worn by Italians, 4, 148 ; worn in the middle ages, 145 ; leaden, with Priapic fymbols, found in the feine, 146, 170. Androgynous figures in ancient fculptures,

41—43- Animal worfhip, 30, 32, 2^, 34. Antwerp, Priapus, under the name of

Ters, its patron faint, 144. Apis, Egyptian facred bull, 30. Apollo, 76.

Apollo, Didymjeus, 82. Appian, 82. Apuleius, 39, 95. Ariilophanes, ancient fyilcm of theology,

44- . Ariftotle, 42.

Arras, perfecutions againft witchcraft there, 207, ef feq.

Artemidorus, mention of fymbolical horns, 22.

AruerisorOrus, Greek Apollo, parentage of, 40.

Athenasus, mention of a phallus, 120 cubits long, 84.

Aufonius, mention of the Floralia, 155.

Bacchanalia, 154.

Bacchus, ancient reprefentations of, 74.

Bagvat Geeta, expofition of Hindu theo- logy, 48—50, 56, 58, 59, 61. _:;

Baphomet, idol of the Knights Templars, 198.

Barrennefs in women, Priapic fymbols for the cure of, 142.

Becan, account of antiquities of Antwerp, 144.

Bell tolling, origin of, 97.

Bodinus, account of the witches' Sab- bath, 210.

Bona Dea, Priapic rites, 156.

Brahma, Hindoo deity, 60.

Brand's Popular Antiquities, 161, 168.

Britain, remains of Priapic worfliip found in, 122 — 126.

Bulgarians, k(\ of Gnoilics, 175, 176.

Bull, Indian worfhip of, 34.

Burchardus, 129, 144, 171-

Butterfly, ancient religious allegory, 100.

Ccefar, S i .

Cakes in form of phallus made at Ealler, iqS.



Campegius, mention ot'phallic cakes, 159. Cat, alleged vvorfhip of by the Templars,


Cathari, mediaeval feft, 178.

Cato the younger, anecdote of, 155.

Celenderis, medal of, 71.

Celtic temple at Zeeland, 64.

Ceres and Baubo, ftory of, 134.

Ceres and Proferpine, 71, 134.

Chalons, council of, aft of, 129.

Chilminar, ancient ruins at, 86.

Chriftian (early) fefts, 172, et feq.

Chriilian fellivals, exceffes at, 107.

Chryfoflom, 19, note.

Churches, fculptures of phallic emblems on, 131, et feq., 204.

Coggelhall (Ralph de), old Englifh chro- nicler, account of the Waldenfes, 179.

Coles' (W.) Adam in Eden, obfcene names of plants, 167.

Como, fculptures on the church of San Fedele, 137.

Corinth, temple at, 104, 105.

Corinthian order of architefture, origin

of» 53- Cow, fymbol of Venus in Egypt, 33,62. Cyzicus, ancient medal of, 29 ; worfhip

of Venus there, 84. D'Harcanville, references to his work,

" Recherches fur les Arts," 15,21,23,

28, 45, 47, 70, 74, 136. De Lancre, account of witchcraft in

France, A. D. 1612, 212, et feq. Diana, the female deftruftive power, 77. Diodorus Siculus, 19, note, 65, 105. Dionyfius of Halicarnaffus, 104. Dulaure, refearches on modern Priapic

worfhip, 118. Durandus, mention of fingular Eafter

cullom, 161. Dufii, Gallic name for Incubi, 152. Eafter, Teutonic feftival with Priapic

obfervances, 157. Egyptian religious rites, 16, 30, 31, 32,

83 ; ancient Egyptian monuments,

51, 52-

Egypt, phallic images brought thence,

137- Elephant, reprefented in ancient Indian

monuments, 56, 57 ; Greek, 59. Elephanta, fculptures from the caverns of,

47, 53; Elephantis. ancient erotic work, 103. Embrun, phallus of St. Foutin worftiipped

there, 140. Eryx, temple at, 105. Euripides, 44, 69, 80, 104, 106. Fafcinum, Roman name for male organ,

mediajval worfhip of, 128, 145. Fateux, cakes made in form of phallus,

159- Fauns and fatyrs, 35, 43, 45.

Feftivals of Priapus, 154, et feq.

Fig, obfcene gefture, called "to make the

fig," a Priapic emblem, 150 ; referred

to in a trial of witches, 235. Fire, worfhip of, 65. Floralia, Priapic feftival, 155, 161. Forgeais (M.), phallic amulets found by

him in the Seine, 146. Frea, Anglo-Saxon Priapus, 126. Fridaythorpe, Yorkfhire, and Frifton,

probable derivation of the names,

127. Gems, ancient, illuftrative of the fubjeft,

39, 41, 61, 104, 155. Generative powers, worfhip of during

the middle ages of Weftern Europe,

117, et feq. Gerard's Herbal^ obfcene names of

plants, 167. German witchcraft in the fifteenth cen- tury, 209. German worfhip of the fun, 34, 81. Gefner, medals publifhed by, 74. Gnoftics, their praftices of hofpitality,

&c., 99, 173. Goat, fymbol of the generative attribute,

23 ; living goat worfhip of ancient

Egyptians, 32. Godiva's (Lady) procefTion, a relic of

Priapic celebration, 170.



Golnitz, account of a ilatue at Antwerp,

145- Goltzius, medals publiflied by, 46.

Gonnis, Hindoo deity, 56, 57, 58, 61.

Greece, ancient theology of, 17, 32, 34.

Grecian reprefentations of attributes of

the deity, 16, 45, 60. Greek temples, 55. Gregory IX., account of fecret rites of

the Stcdingers, 183 — 185. Grotius, 37, note. Hammer (Baron von), defcription of

idols of the Knights Templars, 138,

199, et feq. Harmony, daughter of Mars and Venus,

71- Heaving and lifting, Englilh cultoms at

Eafter, 160. Helman, god of deftruftion, 78, ig, 80. Herculaneum and Pompeii, relics ot

Priapic worfhip and attributes found

there, 4, 27, zZy 37. ^20. Hercules, attributes of, 91, 92. Hermaphrodite,ancient figures of, 41,43. Herodotus, 31,32,52, Gt,, 66, 104, 134. Hefiod, 16, 44, 106. Hierapolis, goddefs of, the Priapic Diana,

83- Hierapolis, temple at, 84.

Hindoo animal worlhip, 34 ; fymbols of

generative organs on ancient Indian

fculptures, 47, 48 ; ancient Hindoo

theology, 56, et feq. Homer, 17, 32, 41, 51, 63, 69, 72, 73,

80, 91, 98, 112. Horace, 128.

Horns, ancient fymbol of power, 22. Horfefhoe, modern form of ancient

drawings of the female organ, ufed as

a talisman, 139. Houfefteads in Northumberland, fculp-

ture found there, 125. Idolatry among the Knights Templars,

194, et feq. Incuhi, fpirits of the woods, 152. Inniflcea. an ifland on the wellern fliores

of Ireland, lall trace of Priapic worfliip found there, 248. Ireland, Shclah-na-gig, reprefentations of the female organ found there, 132 —

134- Ifernia, 5, 118.

Ifis, ancient deity, 39, 40, 50, 83, 95. Italian Chriilian lefts, names of, 177. James I, on witchcraft, 210. Japanefe fculptures, 47. Jewifli religion, identity of its fymbols

with thofe of the heathen, 112, 113. Jofephus, III. Jupiter, father of Minerva, 57, 58, 69,

85, 93. lOi, II3-. Jupiter Ammon, identical with Pan, 38.

Juvenal, 105, 124, 155, 156.

Kandarp, Hindoo god of love, 61, 62.

Ketzer, German name of the Cathari,

178. Krcfhna, Hindoo deity, 48. Labourd, proceedings againft witchcraft

there, a. d. 1609, 212, et feq. Laftantius, 103. Lanercoll, chronicle of, 129. Leaden tokens with phallic emblems,

146, 170, 183. Le Chatelet, phallus found there, 119. Lefbos, ancient rites in the ifland of, 105. Liberalia, Priapic fcllival, 154. Libitina, Roman Goddefs ot death, 73. Lingam, Indian reprefentation of the

generative attribute, 49, 54. Lion, ancient fymbol of the fun, 70. Lotus, facred plant of the Hindoos, 49,

50, 54, 58-

Lucian, 83, 84.

Lucretius, 45.

Lycaean Pan, god of the Arcadians, 35.

Lycopolis, fun worfliip there, 81.

Macrobius, mention of a temple in

Thrace, 67, 78, 81. Malleus Maleficarum, celebrated work

againft witchcraft, 209. Mandrake, ancient Priapic iuperftitions

regarding, 16S.



Manichsans, early Chrillian left, 173,

174. Mapes (Walter), account of the fecret

rites of the Paterini in the eleventh

century, 176. Mars, god of deftruftion, 78., Mars and Venus, 71. Martial, epigrams, 149, 159. May Day, mediaeval celebration of, iden- tical with the Roman Floralia, 161 ; , Elizabethan cuflom on May Day, 162,

163. Mecklenburg Strelitz, ftatuettes found

there, 136. Medallicreprefentationsof the generative

organs, 29. Medals with phallic emblems, ufed by

fecret focieties of the middle ages, 205. Medufa's head, 90. Miches, cakes made in the form of the

male organ in France, 160. Michelet, account of proceedings againll

the Templars, 188, 247. Middleton (Dr.) Letter from Rome, 3. Minerva, Greek deity, fimilar to the

Hindoo Gonnis, her attributes, birth,

&c., 57, 58, 61. Minotaur, fabulous monfter, 89, 90. Molay (Jaques de) grand mailer of the Templars, proceedings againft him, 185. Molitor (Ulric), work on witchcraft,

A. D. 1489, 209. Moon, ancient attributes of, 59, 83. Mufee Secret, reprefentations of phalli,

120, 149. Naples, Sir W. Hamilton's account of

Priapic worfhip there, 3. Needfire, 127, 163 — 166 ; introduced

in the witches' Sabbath, 222. Nicolaitae, early Chriftian feft, 173. Nider (John), work on witchcraft, 209. Nimes, Roman amphitheatre at, fculp-

tures of phalli, 119 — 122. Novatians, early Chriftian feft, 178. Nymphs, companions of fauns and fatyrs,


Occus, Hindoo deity, 60. Onomacritus, early poet, 18, note. Orleans, a fecret fociety with obfcene

rites there, in the eleventh century,

182. Orpheus, Argonauticon, account of,

18, note. Orpheus, hymns of, 19, note^ 20, 24,

29, 40, 44, 65, 69, 92, 93. Orphic fyftem of theology, 17, et feq. Oliris, ancient deity, 16, 29, 40, 68. Ovid, 44.

Pason, Greek name of Apollo, 75. Pagan rites introduced into the worfhip

of the early Chriftians, 171, et feq. Pan, attributes of, 35 — 38, 69. Paterini, Italian feftarians, and their

fecret rites, 176. Paulicians, fedt of Gnoftics, introducers

of phailic worfhip into Weflern Eu- rope, 175. Paufanias, 19, note^ 39, 63. Pellerin, medal publifhed by him, 29. Perfian worfhip, d^^, 86. Philippe IV. proceedings againft the

Knights Templars, 185. Philo fuppofed firft individuals of the

human race to be androgynous, 43. Phoenician medals. 87, 88, 90. Phoenician religion, ancient, 94. Pilofi, fpirits of the woods, 152. Pindar, 60, 98, loi. Plants connefted with Priapic worfhip,

obfcene names of, &c., 166, et feq. Plato, 74.

Platonic religion, 25, 37, 65, 67, 89. Pliny, 76. Plutarch, 15, 16, 19, note^ 20, 30, 38,

60, 68, 82, 96, 120. Pluto, 69.

Pollear, Hindoo deity, 56, 61. Polypus reprefentedon Greek medals, 2 1 . Popular oaths and exclamations derived

from phallic worfhip, 181. Priapeia, feftival of Priapus, 156. Priapus, original intention in the worfhip



of, 15 ; as reprefented by Roman artiils, 42 ; degradation of, 102 ; facri- fices to, 104 ; fanftified in the middle

ages, 139, ^^f^l- Proclus, on truth, 26 ; on the Platonic

theology, 27, 30, 41.

Proferpine, 72.

Ptolemies, medals of, 57, 61.

Ptolemy Philadclphus, 84.

Purgatory, modern form of purification by fire, 100.

Puzzuoli, temple of Serapis there, 64,66.

Pytho, the ferpent dellroyed bv Apollo, 76.

Robin Goodfellow, 153.

Roman worfliip of Priapus, 118.

Sabbath of the witches, modern form of Priapic fertivals, 206, et feq.; fecret praftices at, defcribed by Bodinus, 2IO — 212 ; defcribed by De Lancre, 216, et feq.; identity with rites of the Knights Templars, 246.

St. Auguiline, commands to ladies attend- ing Chrillian feilivals, 107 ; on the Liberalia, 129.

St. Cofmo, modern Italian Priapus, ac- count of the feall of, at Ifernia, 5, 9.

St. Epiphanius, account of the Gnoftics,

173- St. Fiacre, chair of, 142. St. Foutin, French Priapus of the middle

ages, 139, 143- St. John's eve, culloms on, 164 — 166,

168. St. Nicholas, fuperilition regarding, 132. Saints, names of fcveral phallic, 141. Scottifh worfhip of Priapus in the 13th

century, 130, 13 •• Scrat, German fpirit of the woods, 151. Scriptural emblems, 86. Sefts of the middle ages, 172, et feq. Serapis, temple of, 64. Serpent, fymbol of life and vigour, 21 ;

worfhipped by Egyptians, 32. Shakefpeare, ufe of the phrafe "the fig

of Spain," 150.

Shelah-na-gig, rcprcfcntations of the fe- male organ found in Ireland under that name, 132 — 134.

Shrewfbury fhow, a relic of Priapic cele- bration, 170.

Sicyon, temple at, mentioned by Paula- nias, 63.

Sileni, attendants on Bacchus, 41.

Snake, hooded, fymbol of the Egyptians,

5.3-. Societies, fecret, in the middle ages, for

Priapic worfhip, 170.

Sodomy praftifed by ancient fefts, Bul- garians, 176; Cathari, 179; Knights Templars, 190 — 193.

Solar fyrtem, 109.

Sonnerat, account of Hindoo antiquities,

48, 53- Sophocles, 36, 37, 38. Soul, ancient ideas of the emancipation

of, from the body, 97 — 100. Sprenger (Jacob), work on witchcraft,

209. Stedingers, alleged fecret rites of, and

crufade againil, 183 — 185. Stonehenge, temple for worfliip of

Apollo, 65. Strabo, 31, 33. Stubbes' (P.) defcription of May-day

ceremonies, 162. Sun worfliip, 66, 77 — 82. Sweden, worfliip of the god Fricco, 126. Sylvanus, Pan fo called by the Latins,

Symbols, explanation of the Priapic, 17; ancient fymbols, 20, et feq.\ 45 — 47, 55, 67, etfeq.; fun worfliip, 78 — 82; 87, 88, 89 ; on ftatue of Ifis, 96 ; butterfly, ancient fymbol of the foul, 100.

Syracufe, medal of, 55.

Syftrum, myilic inllrument of the god- dels Ifis, 96.

Temples for heathen worfliip, 63, etfeq.

Templars, Knights, fecret pradices, trial and diflblution of their order, 150,



169, 185, et feq.; identity of their proceedings with thofe of the witches' Sabbath, 246.

Ters, i.e. Priapus, the patron faint of Antwerp, 144.

Thebes, ancient temples at, 51.

Theology, Ancient, attributes of a Di- vine Being, 24 — 26.

Tiger attendant on Bacchus, 74.

Toads attendant at witches' Sabbath, 232, 236.

Trajan's column, 51, 52.

Typhon, the deftroying power, 68, 69.

Urus, or wild bull, Greek fymbol of the Creator. 21.

Vauderie, French praftice of witchcraft, 20S.

Venus, 82 ; feilval of, 155.

Virgil, defcription of the emanation of the pervading Spirit of God, 29, 72, 99.

Vulcan, 57, 80.

Waldenfes, origin of the feft, 178; their fecret rites, 179.

Warburton (Bifhop), 2)Z-

Water, worfhip of, 82, et feq.

Witchcraft, the lall form of Priapic wor- fhip, 206, et feq.; fecret rites of the Vauderie, 208.

Xanten, pottery with Priapic emblems found there. 122.


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