Εικόνες σελίδας
PDF
Ηλεκτρ. έκδοση

Sole dies referente siccos.'

şhip of Ulysses, with himself tied to the mast, is frequently about the tenth of August. This heliacal rising is a very represented on gems, and other works of antient art. (See indefinite phenomenon, and will serve any system: by it Dictionary of Greek and Roman Antiquities, p. 52.) The Bailly, from Bainbridge's calculations, was able to carry number of the Sirens was afterwards increased to three, back the settlement of Egypt 2800 years before Christ: and yarious names were given to them by different writers. while Newton, by a reckoning made ou the same principles, They were usually called the daughters of Melpomene and made many antient events seem later than was generally Achelous (Apollod., i. 3, § 4), and were represented by art- supposed. ists with the feathers and wings of birds (compare Ovid, The greatest heats of summer generally follow the summer Met., v. 522, &c.) They were urged by Hera to contend solstice, and in the Mediterranean latitudes, and in antient with the Muses, who conquered ibem, and tore off their times, it was observed that the unhealthy and oppressive wings. (Paus., ix. 34, § 2.)

period coincided with the heliacal rising of the dog-star. SIRHIND, a district of northern Hindustan, which ex We say the dog-star, without specifying whether it was tends from 29° 27' to 31° N. lat., and from 73° 38' to 77o Sirius or Procyon; it is uncertain which it was, and may 38' E. long. The northern boundary is formed by the have been both, for the heliacal risings do not differ by Sutlej, and the Jumna forms a part of the eastern boun- many days. The star itself was in Latin canicula, which dary. The principal river is the Gagur. Most of the other should seem to apply to the lesser dog, and Horace says rivers are affluents of the Gagur. Sirhind constitutes a por

'Jam Procyon furit tion of what are called the Hill States, and is inhabited

Et stella vesani Leonis (sc, Regulus) by the Sikhs. [HINDUSTAN, p. 233.] The town of Sirhind, from which the district derives its name, though formerly a Pliny supports the same meaning of canicula, and perplace of importance, is now little else than a heap of ruins, baps Hyginus; also the framers of the Alphonsine Tables,

SIRI, VITTO'RIO, born at Parma in 1625, became a and Bede and Kepler, among the older moderns: while Gerpriest, and afterwards went to Paris, where he found favour manicus and Julius Firmicus, with Apian, Magini, Argoli

, with Louis XIV., who appointed him his almoner and his. H. Stephens, and Petavius, among the moderns, contend toriographer. Siri wrote a journal in Italian, entitled 'Mer- for Sirius, which is the more common opinion. All anticurio Politico,' which he continued for many years, and as quity attributed an evil intluence to the star; and though Louis acted for a long period the principal part on the Geminus among the antients, and Petavius among the mopolitical stage of Europe, he was flattered at having by him derns, thought ihat the effects were to be attributed to the a writer who contributed to spread his fame in a foreign sun alone, they had hardly any followers until the fall of language. Siri however was not a fulsome flatterer, and judicial astrology. Even at this day, when the heats of the although he often praised Louis, he did not always spare his latter part of the summer are excessive, we are gravely told ministers and other powerful men of that and the preceding that we are in the dog-days; and the almanacs, in which an reign, and this freedom passed unheeded chiefly from the absurdity has the lives of a cat, persist to this very year in circumstance of his writing in a language foreign to France, informing us that the dog-days begin on the 3rd of July, and which was not understood by the people in general. and end on the 11th of August. Now as the heliacal rising Besides the 'Mercurio Politico,' the collection of which con. of Sirius takes place about the very end of this period, it is sists of fifteen thick volumes, Siri wrote another journal, clear that the cart has got before the horse, or the mischief entitled “Memorie Recondite,' which fills eight volumes, before the dog. Moreover it is notorious that in our island Le Clerc (Bibliothèque Choisie, vol. iv., p. 138) observes the oppressive heats of the summer, during which dogs are that both these works contain a vast number of valuable apt to run mad (which is what many people think the name authentic documents. The general style of the writer is how- arises from, as indeed it was antiently recorded among the erer prolix and heavy. Siri died at Paris, in 1685. Cor- effects of the star), generally fall about the middle or end niani, Secoli della Letteratura Italiana.)

of August. The real classical dog-days are the twenty days SIRI'CIUS, a native of Rome, succeeded Damasus I. as preceding and the twenty days following the heliacal bishop of that city, A.D. 384, under the reign of Valentinian rising of whichever star it was, Sirius or Procyon. It is perII. We have several letters by him written to various fectly useless to retain this period : surely these dogs have churches on matters both of dogma and of discipline. Some had their day, of them are in condemnation of the Priscillianists, Dona SIRMOND, JACQUES, was born at Riom, in France, tists, and other heretics; one is directed to Anycius, bishop October 22, 1559. Having completed his studies at the of Thessalonica, on matters of jurisdiction; another to Hi-Jesuits' college at Billom, the first which that Society had merius, bishop of Tarracona, which is one of the oldest in France, he adopted the rule of St. Ignatius, and prepared instances of a bishop of Rome sending mandates to other himself, by a diligent study of the antient languages, for churches to be received as ecclesiastical laws. Siricius is fulfilling the duties of a teacher. When he had finished his also one of the first bishops of Rome who wrote concerning noviciate, his superiors required him to come to Paris as prothe celibacy of the clergy. He directed that a priest who fessor of rhetoric, in which city he remained till 1790, when married a second wife after the death of the first should be he repaired to Rome, on the invitation of the Père Aquaexpelled from his office. (Platina, Lives of the Popes; viva, General of the society of Jesuits, who chose Sirmond Dupin, Nouvelle Bibliothèque, Vie de Sirice.) The council as his secretary. In this employment he continued sixteen of Nicæa had already decreed that all clerks who had been years, during which he examined diligently the manuscripts married before they took orders, should be allowed to retain in the Vatican library, as well as the inscriptions and other their wives according to the antient tradition of the church, remains of antiquity, of which Rome possessed such an but that priests and deacons should not marry after their abundant supply. ordination. Siricius died A.D. 398.

In 1608 the Père Sirmond returned to Paris, and soon SI'RIUS and PRO'CYON (Ecipuos and Iporówv), 'the afterwards commenced a visitation of the libraries and Greek names of the bright stars in the constellations of the archives of the convents, and was thereby enabled 10 save Great and Little Dog (CANIS MAJOR and Minor). These from destruction a great number of documents of the are Orion's dogs, according to some, and those of minor highest value for the history of the middle ages. Sirmond's personages, according to others: the whole of their mythic first publication was the Opuscules' of Geoffroi, abbé de explanations form a strong proof, in addition to those already Vendôme, in 1610; from which time he continued to add noticed, that the constellations are not Greek in their to his reputation by other publications almost every year. origin. In a passage of Hesiod he has been supposed Pope Urban VII. invited him to return to Rome, but Louis to speak of the sun under the name of Sirius; and XIII. retained him in France, and in 1637 made him bis Hesychius defines the word to mean both the sun and confessor. the dog-star. Dr. Hutton informs us that the Egyptians The Père Sirmond, having left the court on the death of • called the Nile Siris, and hence their Osiris,' which Louis XIII. in 1643, recommenced his literary labours, he has copied from Sir John Hill, who derives Sirius which had been somewhat interrupted by attention to the from Siris, but does not say where he got bis informa- duties of his late dignified office, and continued with untion: probably from some writer of his own calibre. The abated ardour to occupy himself in the same way till his Egyptians called the dog-star Sothis [SOTHIAC Period), death, October 7, 1651, when he was 92 years of age. and from its HELIACAL rising had warning that the overflow Sirmond's Ouvrages were collected and published in of the Nile was about to commence. Now the overflow of 1696, in 5 vols. folio. The first three volumes contain the the Nile follows the summer solstice; whereas, by the pre • Opuscules' of those Fathers and other ecclesiastical writers cession of the equinoxes, the heliacal rising of Sirius is now which had been published by Sirmond, with prefaces and

notes; the fourth'volume contains his Dissertations; and | gia Ougeinensis, found in central India, is also highly valued the tifth volume contains the works of Théodore Siudite. Le timber: the pillars of Sindia's palace at Ougein are This edition of Sirmond's Works is by the Père La Baume, made of it. and is preceded by a Life of Sirmond by the editor, his SISTERON, the chief town of an arrondissement in the Funeral Oration by Henri de Valois, and a list of Sirmond's departmentof Basses Alpes in France, on the right bank of the Works in manuscript as well as printed. In this edition Durance, at the junction of the Buech, 437 miles from Paris are included the Works of Ennodius bishop of Paria, of by Lyon, Grenoble, and Gap. Sisteron was known to the RoSidonius Apollinaris, of Eugenius bishop of Toledo, the mans by the name of Segustero (Itinerarium Antoninini, and Chronicles of Idatius and Marcellinus, the Collections of Peutinger Table) or the town of the Segesterii (Notitia ProAnastasius the Librarian, the Capitularies of Charles-le-vinciarum), afterwards altered in to Segesterium, Sistericum, Chauve and his successors, the works of St. Avit, of Théo- and Sisteron. It is not known to what people it belonged. In dulphe bishop of Orleans, &c. Father Sirmond published the sixth century it became the seat of a bishopric, and was other ecclesiastical writers besides those included in the the object of attack in the nintla century to the Saracens and above edition, among which are · L'Histoire de Reims,' by the Hungarians. The townsmen embraced the Huguenot Flodoard, the · Lettres de Pierre de Celles,' the · Quvres' party in the religious contests of the sixteenth century. The of Radbert, of Theodoret, of Hincmar archbishop of Reims, Catholics in consequence attacked the town and took it, A.D. &c. Sirmond published also a Collection of the Councils of 1562; but it was afterwards retaken by Lesdiguières. The France, . Concilia Antiqua Galliæ,' Paris, 1629, folio. town is calculated to be 479 metres, or 1570 feet, above the (Biographie Universelle.)

level of the sea. It is situated at the foot of a rock, upon SIROCCO. [Wind.]

which is an old citadel, and is surrounded by an emSISIN'NIUS, a Syrian by birth, succeeded John VII. battled wall Hanked with towers, but is commanded by the as bishop of Rome, A.D. 707, and died twenty days after his surrounding heights, so as to be little defensible in moderi: election. He was succeedled by Constantine.

warfare. There are two bridges, one of a single arch over SISON, the name of a genus of plants belonging to the the Durance, the other over the Buech. The ex-cathedral natural order Umbelliferæ. It possesses the following, has a fine altar-piece by Vanloo; there are two other characters :-calyx obsolete ; petals broadly obcordate, deeply churches, an hospital, and a prison. The population in notched, and curved with an inflexed point; styles very 1831 was 3937 for the town, or 4429 for the whole comshort; fruit ovate, laterally compressed; carpels with mune. The townsmen manufacture hats, leather, and potfive filiform equal ridges, of which the lateral ones are tery; there are lime kilns; and trade is carried on in almonds, marginal; interstices with single, short, club-shaped vittæ ; wool, oil, and truffles: therc are ten yearly fairs. The surseed gibbous, convex, plane in front; universal and partial rounding country, produces a great quantity of walnuts involucre of few leaves.

and almonds, and some good wine. Urns, vases, lamps, Several species were formerly referred to this gunus which medals, and other Roman antiquities have been dug up are now placed under various getiera. The only species that here. is now decidedly referred to Sison is the S. Amomum, hedge SISTRUM, a musical instrument of percussion, of the bastard stone parsley. It is a native of France, Sicily, Italy, highest antiquity, constructed of brass, and shaped like Greece, and Great Britain. It is not unfrequent in this the frame and handle of a racket, the head part of which country, especially in chalk soils in rather moist ground, had three, and sometimes four, horizontal bars placed under hedges, &c. It is known by its erect, terete, pani- loosely on it, which were tuned, most probably, by some culately branched stem; pinnate leaves, the lower leaflets scale, and allowed to play freely, so that when the instrurather toothed and lobed, upper ones cut into narrow seg ment was shaken, piercing, ringing sounds must have been ments. The flowers are cream-coloured. The green plant produced. Some writers have confounded the sistrum with when bruised has a peculiarly nauseous smell, something the cymbals, though the instruments could have had nothing like that of bugs. The seeds are pungent and aromatic, | in common except their harsh metallic sounds. and were formerly celebrated as a diuretic, but are now little SISY'MBRIUM (from Eloúußprov), the name of a used.

genus of plants belonging to the natural order Cruciferæ. SISSOO, a tree well known throughout the Bengal pre- | It possesses a roundish silique seated upon torus; two sidency, and highly valued on account of its timber. It is stigmas, somewhat distinct, or connate into a head; calyx common chiefly in the forests and beds of rivers which ex- equal at the base; ovate or oblong seeds; ftat, incumbent, tend all along the foot of the Himalayas up to 30° N. lat. sometimes oblique cotyledons; stamens not toothed. The The trunk is generally more or less crooked, lofty, and species are mostly perennial or annual herbs, with yellow often from three to four feet in diameter. The branches or white flowers, and leaves very variable on the same are numerous and spreading the leaves pinnate, with 5 plant. About fifty-eight species are enumerated, but conalternate roundish acute leaflets, which from their small paratively few of these are cultivated. The genus however size and drooping nature give the tree a very light and belongs to an order that possesses no injurious plants, and elegant appearance.

a few of the species are well known on account of their The Sissoo yields the Bengal shipbuilders their crooked timbers and knees. Dr. Roxburgh describes it as being S. officinarum, Common Hedge-Mustard, has muricato tolerably light, remarkably strong, but not so durable as pilose leaves, a pilose stem, and subolate pods pressed to tho could be wished; the colour is light greyish-brown, with rachis. It is a native of Europe, and grows in waste places dark veins: he says that upon the whole he scarcely knows and way-sides, among rubbish, and along the sides of walls. any other tree more deserving of attention, from its rapid It is plentiful in Britain, and also the north of Africa. The growth in almost every soil, its beauty, and uses. Captain whole plant is warm and acrid, and is often cultivated for Baker, in his ' Experiments on the Elasticity and Strength use as a pot-herb. It is eaten by sheep and goats; but of Indian Timbers,' describes the Sissoo in structure some cows, horses, and swine refuse it. In medicine it was forwhat resembling the finer species of teak, but as being merly much used as an expectorant in chronic coughs and tougher and more elastic, and as employed by the natives asthma. It was also recommended in ulcerations of the for house furniture, beams, cheeks, spokes, naves and fel. mouth and throat. The stimulant properties of this and lies of wheels, keels and frames of boats, blocks, and print- other plants belonging to the order would make them uning-presses. It is universally employed both by Europeans doubtedly valuable remedies in many diseases in the absence and natives of the north-west provinces where strength is of other means, but in modern medicine more powerful and required.

certain remedies have thrown into disuse many agents forThe Sissoo belongs to a genus Dalbergia, which abounds merly highly valued. in valuable timber-trees, as D. latifolia, which is usually S. Irio. London Rocket or Broad-leaved Hedge-Mustard : called Blackwood-tree by the English, and of which the stem and leaves smooth; leaves runcinate; lobes toothed; wood is exported as a kind of ebony: sometimes also pod erect. It is a native of waste places throughout Europe, called Black Rose-wood. It is one of the largest timber but especially about London. Ii is said to have entirely irees of India, being 15 feet in circumference, with the covered the ground in the following spring of the great fire wood of a greenish-black colouř, with lighter-coloured veins of London in 1666. The former species is also remarkable running in various directions, and admitting a fine polish, for appearing on the ground where fires have existed. In and therefore much admired as furniture-wood. Captain such cases the ashes of the fires constitute a nutriment peBaker found it, like the Sissoo, able to sustain a weight of culiarly adapted for the growth and development of these 1300 pounds, when teak broke with 1128 lbs. S. Dalber- plants. The whole of this plant possesses the hot biting

uses.

character of the mustard. Several varieties have been re one of the group of islands which received from Vancouver corded.

the name of King George III.'s Archipelago. The outward S. Sophia, Five-leaved Hedge-Mustard, or Flixweed: coast of this extensive group had been seen before by Cook leaves doubly pinnatifid, slightly hairy; lobes linear or in his third voyage, who called a very elevated island, which oval; pedicels four times longer than the calyx; petals had the appearance of a cape, Mount Edgecombe, but he shorter. It grows on dry banks, waste ground, dung- afterwards suspected that it was an island. The space between hills, and among rubbish in most parts of Europe. It is this small island of Edgecombe and the larger island which frequent in Great Britain. It has derived its name of flix. lies east of it, forms the harbour of the settlement. WhenVanweed and that of wisdom of surgeons' from its supposed couver surveyed this coast, he thought that the outward coast, power of controlling diarrhea, dysentery, &c. Whatever which extends from Chatham Sound on the south (56°N. lat.) may have been its former reputation, it is now almost to Cross Sound (58°N. lat.) on the north, constituted one large entirely fallen into disuse.

island, which he called King George III.'s Island; but it S. millefolium, Millfoil-leaved Flixweed: leaves some was afterwards ascertained that it was divided by a narrow what tripinnate, hoary; lobules blunt, small; stems shrubby; strait into two islands, and since that time the northern petals larger than the calyx. A native of Teneriffe, on the island has been called by the native name of Sitkha, while rocks in the lower parts of the island. It is a small branched the southern has received the name of Baranoff Island, in shrub, with corymbose flowers. It is a greenhouse species, honour of the founder of the Russian settlement. On the growing well in a rich light soil; and young cuttings will last-mentioned island Baranoff built a small fort in 1799, readily root under a hand-glass when placed in a sheltered which was destroyed in 1802 by the natives of the tribe of situation.

the Koloshes. But in 1804 Baranoff expelled them from the S. strictissimum, Spear-leaved Hedge-Mustard: leaves strait which constitutes the harbour of New Arkhanghelsk, lanceolate, stalked, toothed, pubescent. It has intensely and founded in the vicinity of one of their villages the preyellow flowers, with pods two inches long; the stem is erect, sent town. The harbour, which Vancouver named Norfolk and branching at the top. It is a hardy perennial, adapted Sound, but which is now better known as the Bay of for shrubberies, and may be easily increased by division of Sitkha, is spacious and safe, and offers excellent anchorage the root.

opposite the settlement. The place itself is surrounded by This genus at one time included that now known under a wooden wall, and enclosed by mountains of considerable the name of Nasturtium. The latter was originally sepa- elevation, which are almost covered with forests, in which rated by Brown, and is principally distinguished by the excellent timber is found. Ship-building constitutes the position of the cotyledons, a point of primary importance in most important of the branches of industry, and all the the whole order of Brassicaceæ. In Sisymbrium the cotyle. vessels of the American Company are now built at this dons are folded with their back upon the radicle, whilst in place, since ship-building has been discontinued at Okbotsk. Nasturtium their edges are presented to it; in the former New Arkhanghelsk is the centre of the administration of the cotyledons are said to be incumbent, in the latter accum-. the Russian territories in America, over which the American bent.

Company exercises sovereign powers, nearly in the same way A well known species of Nasturtium is the N. officinale, as the Hudson's Bay Company over a much more extensive formerly Sisymbrium Nasturtium, the common water-cress. portion of North America. The collecting of furs is the In addition to the characters of the genus, this plant is exclusive object of both companies, and New Arkhanghelsk known principally by the form of its leaves. The leaf is may be compared with Fort York, which lies nearly under composed of from 5 to 7 leaflets, which are arranged oppo- the same latitude on the eastern coast of America. But site each other on a common petiole with a terminal leaflet. NewArkhanghelsk is larger:its population in 1833 amounted The leaflets are somewhat heart-shaped and slightly waved to 847 individuals, of whom 406 were Europeans, and 307 and toothed; they are succulent, and their surface is smooth. descendants of Europeans and native women, and 134 only The terminal leaflet is always largest. The upper leaves do Aleutes and Koloshes. New Arkhanghelsk has also a not separate into distinct leaflets, being pinnatifid with much greater commerce by sea, and the vessels of the Comnarrow segments. The petiole of the leaf does not in any pany visit California, whence they import grain and salt, and manner embrace the stem. The flowers are white, and the dried meat; and the Sandwich Islands, where they obtain pods, when ripe, are about an inch long. This plant is a salt for curing their fish. The number of vessels employed native of rivulets throughout the world, and is very plentiful by the Company in this commerce and in the transport of in Great Britain. It has a warm agreeable flavour, and has the furs which have been collected in the different smaller long been one of the most popular plants as a salad. It settlements amounts to twelve; their tonnage is stated not was formerly much used in medicine as a diuretic and anti- to exceed (1833) 1565 tons. scorbutic, but its great consumption now is as an article of Wrangell continued to make meteorological obserrations diet. As it frequently grows amongst plants that are not during his stay at New Arkhanghelsk (1833 and 1835), and wholesome, and that bear to it a general resemblance, it Baer has taken advantage of his work to compare the cliwould be well for every one to be acquainted with its charac- mate of Nain on the coast of Labrador with that of Sitkha. ters. The plant most frequently mistaken for it, especially the result is contained in the following table, which exwhen out of flower, is the fool's water-cress. Stuz. From presses the mean temperature of the seasons and of the this it may be always distinguished, and in fact from all year :other Umbelliferæ, by the petioles of the leaves nuc forming

New Arkhanghelsk. Nam. a sheath round the stem.

Winter (Dec.-Feb.) +34.74 -1.26 The water-cress is cultivated to a very great extent in the

Spring (March-May) 42:28 +22:38 neighbourhood of London. The plants are placed out in

Summer (June-Aug.) 56.30

45.62 rows in the bed of a clear stream in the direction of the Autumn (Sept.-Nov.) 47.89

36.00 current, and all that is required for their successful growth is replanting occasionally and keeping the plants clear of

Annual mean temper. +45.30 +25.50 mud and weeds; sandy and gravelly bottoms are best. Thus it appears that the mean annual temperature of • Some market-gardeners who can command only a small these two places, situated respectively on the eastern and stream of water, grow the water-cress in beds sunk about western coasts of North America, differs nearly 20 degrees two feet in a retentive soil, with a very gentle slope from of Fahrenheit; in winter the difference amounts to 36 one end to the other. Then, according to the slope and degrees, and in summer to nearly 114 degrees. But though length of the bed, dams are made six inches high across it, these observations prove the great superiority of the western at intervals, so that when these dams are full, the water coast of North America over the eastern in respect to climate, may rise not less than three inches on all the plants in a comparison between Sitkha and Bergen in Norway shows

luded in each. The water, being turned on, will circulate that the western coast of the old continent is much more from dam to dam, and the plants, if not allowed to run to favoured by nature. For though Bergen is 3 degrees and flower, will afford abundance of young tops in all but the 20 minutes nearer the pole, the mean temperature of the winter months.' (G. Don.) Water-cresses grown in this way winter is +36°, of the spring +45°, of the summer + 58°, and have not so fine a flavour as those from natural streams. of the autumn + 48°, and the mean annual temperature

SITKHA is the name of the most important of the nearly 47o. The climate of the last-mentioned place may Russian settlements on the west coast of North America, also in other respects be compared with that of Sitkha, es

hough its proper name is New Arkhanghelsk. This place lies pecially in regard to humidity. Sitkha however is cer in 57° 2' 50" N. lat. and 135° 18' W. long., and is built on " iainly more humid; for in 1828 there occurred 120 days

in which rain fell without interruption, and 180 days in | Trimárti, or triad, of the Hindus; and although, in allusion which showers were frequent, so that only 66 days were to his office as destroyer, he is classed third, yet he is genefree from rain. Snow is frequent during three or four rally allowed to occupy the second place among the Hindu months, but it does not lie long on the ground. It is consi- deities, or even (according to Kindersley) the first, as his dered rare if the frost continues for ten days together. supremacy appears to have obtained more general assent It is to this great degree of humidity that the failure of than that of Vishnu. Indeed the worship of Siva is so preall attempts to cultivate grain is attributed ; for there are dominant, that Brahma, who is the only one of the three many other places in which it succeeds, and in which the mentioned by Manu, and who seems to have enjoyed a mean temperature of summer is from 8° to 10° lower. The larger share of adoration in antient times, has now only one prevailing winds are from the south-east and the south-west. temple in India, while Mahadeva (a name of Siva) and the Thunder-storms occur only in November and December, adventurous Vishnu, whose incarnations attract so much of and never in summer.

the veneration of the Hindus, are, in fact, the only gods of (Langsdorf's Voyages and Travels in various parts of the whole Hindu pantheon who have numerous worshipthe World; Lütke's Voyage autour du Monde ; and Wran- pers. This however is no proof that Siva or Vishnu dates gel's Statistische und Ethnographische Nachrichten über from a later period. The personification of the three divine die Russischen Besitzungen an der Nordwestküste von attributes originates, no doubt, with the Vedas, and the America.)

names of the three gods are mentioned, though rarely, and SITKOPF. (JAPAN.]

without the least allusion to their pre-eminence over the SITTA. [NUTHATCH.]

elemental gods or over each other, but we do not find SITTINGBOURNE. [KENT.]

that the two great sects of India, the Vaishnavas (followers SIUM, the name of a genus of plants belonging to the of Vishnu) and the Saivas (worshippers of Siva) came into natural order Umbelliferæ. The calyx possesses 5 teeth or existence before the seventh or eighth century of our æra. is obsolete; petals obcordate with an inflexed point, or entire It is therefore to the Puranas (the scriptures of the modern and ovate; fruit laterally compressed or contracted, and Hindu religion) that we must ascribe the extension of the subdidymous, crowned with the reflexed styles with their worship of Siva and the character which now distinguishes depressed bases; carpels with 5 equal, filiform, rather obtuse this god. We cannot however point out the difference beridges, of which the lateral ones are marginal; interstices | tween the mode of worshipping Siva now and in the time of with one or many vittæ; seed subterete. The universal Manu, the Vedas being too little known, and the extracts from involucre varies; the partial one is composed of many them, which have been hitherto published, unsatisfactory. leaves.

We must therefore limit ourselves to the description of the S. Sisarum, Skirret, is the best-known plant of this present popular form of Siva worship, which in all probability genus. The root is composed of fascicles of fusiform tubers; had not assumed its actual state before the great Saiva re. stem terete; leaves pinnate, upper ones ternate, leaflets former, Sankara Acharya, who lived in the eighth or ninth ovato-lanceolate, acute, serrated; involucre of 5 reflexed century. (Vishnu Purânu, pref., p. x.) This opinion is leaves; commissure, according to Koch, with 4 vitlæ. It supported by the well-founded assertion that the Saiva faith has white flowers. The tubers of the root are about the was instituted by Paramata Kalânala, who is described in size of the finger, and were formerly greatly esteemed in the Sankara Vijaya' of Ananda Giri as teaching at Becookery, but are now gone much into disuse. The French nares, and assuming the insignia that characterize the Dancall this plant Chervis, the Germans Zucker-wurzel, and in dis, a sect of Saivas of modern times. (As. Res., xvi. 22.) No the north of Scotland, where it is much eaten when cooked, allusion is made in the Puranas to the original power of this it is called crummock. When eaten, the tubers are boiled god as destroyer; that power not being called into exercise and served up with butter, forming, according to an old till after the expiration of twelve millions of years, when writer, the sweetest, whitest, and most pleasant of roots.' according to Pauranic accounts, the Kaliyuga will come to a

The Skirret is a native of China, and is reputed to possess close together with the universe; and Mahâdeva is rather in that country peculiar medicinal virtues. Sir J. E. Smith the representative of regeneration than of destruction. Inobserves that the Chinese have long been in the habit of deed the worship of the type which represents him as the sending this root to Japan as the true Ginseng of Tartary, vivifying principle, the linga (phallus, a smooth black stone or Panar quinquefolia of Linnæus, a plant possessing very in the form of a sugar-loaf, with a projection at the base different properties.

like the mouth of a spoon) is spread all over India, and the The Skirret may be propagated by seeds and offshoots. number of worshippers of this image is far greater than the The seeds should be sown in the months of March and worshippers of all the other gods. (Ward, i. 16.) There April, in small drills eight inches apart, in an open space of are however a few legends in Hindu mythology in which lightish ground. When the plants are one or two inches Siva appears as the actor without any reference to the worhigh, they should be thinned, and they may be used as they ship of the linga. The linga is indeed the only form under atiain size till August, September, or October. Plants of which Siva is now adored in most parts of India. Accordthe last year will always afford offsets, which may be broken ing to Professor Wilson (Vishnu Purâna, xliv.), ‘There is off the old roots and planted in rows. For procuring seed nothing like the phallic orgies of antiquity; it is all mystical the plants should be left till the following autumn.

and spiritual. The linga is twofold, external and internal. S. nodiflorum, Fool's Water-cress, or procumbent Water- The ignorant, who need a visible sign, worship Siva through parsnip, possesses a rooting, procumbent, striated stem; \ 'a mark' or 'type, which is the proper meaning of the pinnate leaves, oblong equally serrated leaflets; umbels word 'linga,' of wood or stone; but the wise look upon this sessile, opposite the leaves. It is a native of Europe, in outward emblem as nothing, and contemplate in their ditches and rivulets, and is common in Great Britain. A minds the invisible inscrutable type, which is Siva himself. small and large variety are recorded, the one not attaining Whatever may have been the origin of this form of worship more than three or four inches in height, the other as many in India, the notion upon which it was founded, according feet. It was formerly admitted into the · London Pharma- to the impure fancies of European writers, is not to be read copeia,' on account of its efficacy in cutaneous diseases even in the Saiva Purana.' 'Indeed the emblems under and scrofula. Dr. Withering has recorded his opinion in which the Hindus exhibit the elements and operations of its favour, and related a remarkable case in which benefit nature are not indecorous, and the low cylinder of stone, was derived from its use. He administered three or four which is meant for the symbol of the creative power, sugounces of the juice in milk daily. This plant has often been gests no suspicion of its original import; and nothing whatrepresented as very poisonous ; but if thus much of the juice ever belongs to the worship of the linga, or to the terms in can be taken with impunity, it can hardly be very active. which this is mentioned, which has the slightest tendency This, with some other species of Sium, has been placed by to lead the thoughts from the contemplation of the god to Koch under a new genus, Helosciadium. The principal dif- an undue consideration of the object by which he is typified. ference consists in the number of vittæ found in the inter- The best refutation however of the injurious suppositions to stices of the carpels; Sium liaving several vittæ, Heloscia- which the accounts of many travellers lave given rise, will dium only one.

be the words which Siva himself is supposed to say in the There are many other species of Sium, four of which are Saiva Purâna: • From the supreme spirit proceed PuruBritish, but none of them are cultivated for their beauty or sha (the generating principle), Prakriti (the generative applied to any particular uses.

nature), and Time; and by them was produced this uniSIVA, the personification of the destroying principle, verse, the manifestation of the one god. . ::. Of all organs forms, with the two other gods, Brahma and Vishnu, ihe of sense and intellect the best is mind, which proceeds frou. P. C., No. 1367.

VOL. XXII.-K

[ocr errors]

Ahankára ;* Ahankara, from intellect; intellect, from the impurity, assumed a corporeal form with five heads. Then supreme being, who is in fact Purusha. It is the primeval also was produced from the darkness another form, with male, whose form constitutes this universe, and whose breath three eyes and twisted locks, and bearing a rosary and triis the sky; and though incorporeal, that male am 1. This dent. Brahma next created Ahankâra (self-consciousness), doctrine is pure enough, and the few aberrations which which immediately pervaded both Siva and himself, and remind one of the orgies practised in honour of Bacchus, under its impression Rudra thus said to Pitâ-Mahâ :-“Say, are not sufficient to justify us in stigmatizing it as vile and lord! how camest thou here, and by whom wert thou infamous.

created ?" Brahma replied, “ And whence art thou?" and The linga however is only the type of Siva as the god instantly caused the new-made sky to reverberate with a won. who presides over generation. His other forms are many, and drous sound. Sambhu (Siva) was thus subdued, and stood they vary in so far as they attribute to him the qualities of with a countenance downcast and humbled, like the moon in creator, preserver, destroyer, and regenerator, and represent an eclipse, and the fifth head of Brahma thus addressed him him in his various avatāras (incarnations, eight of which rendered red-dark with anger at his defeat:-"I know thee are called by the common name of Bhairava, and are seve- well, thou form of darkness! with three eyes, clothed with rally termed Asitânga, Ruru, Chandra, Krodha, Unmatta, the four quarters of the sky (i.e. naked), mounted on a Kúpati, Bhîshana, and Sanbâra, all alluding to terrific pro-bull

, the destroyer of the universe.” On hearing these perties of mind or body. He is sometimes seen with two words Sambhu became incensed with anger, and while he hands, at others with four, eight, or ten, and with five faces; viewed the head with the terrible glances of his world-conhe has a third eye in his forehead, the corners of which are suming eye, his five heads, from his wrath, grew white, red, perpendicular, which is peculiar to him; a crescent in his hair, golden, black, and yellow, and fearful to behold. But or on his forehead, encircling the third eye; he wears ear- Brahma, on observing these heads glowing like the sun, rings of snakes, and a collar of skulls. Mahadeva, when re- thus said :-“Why dost thou agitate thyself and attempt to presented thus, but with one head, has four hands, in one of appear powerful? for, if I choose, I could this instant make which he holds a pâsa, the use of which is to extract the thy heads become like bubbles of water." This beard, Siva, souls out of the bodies of men, when their time is come, and inilamed with anger, cut off with the nail of his right hand is a common attribute of Yama, the god of death (S. Savi- the head of Brahma which had uttered such fierce and tryupakhyana, ed. Bopp., p. 25), a tris’ula is upheld by the boasting words; but when he would have thrown it on the other, and the two other hands are in a position of benedic- ground, it would not, nor ever shall it, fall from his hand.' tion. As Bhairava (the lord of dread) he is frightful to be. The beautiful idea which is obscured by the extravagances hold; great tusks burst through his thick lips; the hair, of this passage, namely, that the creation in itself involves which is stiff and erect, gives his face a dreadful aspect; the subsequent destruction, need hardly be pointed out. In fall of the necklace is impeded by numerous snakes which nearly all the representations of Siva, the Ganga (Ganges) is twine round his body. This is also the idol which shows him seen either flowing from his head or beaming on his headas Mahâ-kala, or god of time. It is in this character that he piece. There is an interesting fable which makes it flow is supposed to delight in bloody sacrifices, and that the Saiva from Pârvatí's fingers, but for which we refer our readers to Sannyâsis (followers of Siva who practise the yoga to the Moore’s ‘Hindu Pantheon' (p. 41). highest degree) inflict on themselves the cruelties which have The origin of the linga worship is, we find, differently acrendered so conspicuous the temple of Jaggernaut (Jagan- counted for in different Puranas. The 'Linga-Purâna,' which nâtha, the lord of the world). [Yoga.] A very minute contains 11,000 verses (Mackenzie Coll., i. 39), states that the account of the fortitude and self-denial of the deluded Yogis primitive linga is a pillar of radiance in which Mahâdera is given in Ward's View on the Religion of the Hindus' is present. The appearance of the great fiery linga takes (i. 19). His consort Sakti, who in her corresponding cha- place, in the interval of a creation, to separate Vishnu and racter is celebrated as the goddess Durgâ or Kalî, partici- Brahma, who not only dispute the place of supremacy, but pates in these horrible sacrifices, and has lately become fight for it, when the linga suddenly springs up, and puts more notorious by the exposure of the homicidal practices them to shame; after travelling upwards and downwards of the Thugs, who recognise in her their tutelary divinity. for a thousand years in each direction, neither of them can Siva is also the god of justice. In that character he rides approach its termination. Upon the linga, the sacred a white bull, the symbol of divine justice (Manu, viii. 16), monosyllable Om is visible, and the Vedas proceed from it, and is often seen with the parashu (battle-axe) in his hand, by which Brahma and Vishnu become enlightened, and acand the sacred string. On pictures he is often represented knowledge the superior might and glory of Siva (Vishnuas if rubbed over with ashes, and with a blue neck; the Purana, xliii.). This legend, by which, in its Tamul version, epithet of Nîlakanta (blue-necked) was given to him in the circumstance of Brahma having neither temple nor worcommemoration of his having drunk the poison which arose shippers is accounted for, is given in Kindersley's “Specimen from the sea, and threatened to destroy mankind. But the of Hindu Mythology' (p. 21). In his travels in search of the character in which he is more generally known, and which head of the column, Brahma is said to have found a Cauldairy his followers imitate, is that of the Kapâla-bhrit (skull flower which Siva had purposely dropt from his head. He bearer). Skanda-Purâna makes him describe himself in entreated it to bear false witness for him, that he had actuthe following words :—Pârvatî (his bride) must be foolish ally found the top of the column. The flower rashly conto practise so severe a penance in order to obtain me, Rudra senting to the fraud, both returned to Siva, and asserting (one of his 1000 names), a wandering mendicant, a bearer the falsehood agreed on, Siva, in his just resentment, deof a human skull, a delighter in cemeteries, one ornamented creed that Brahma should never receive any external worwith bones and serpents, covered with ashes and with no ship. A very fanciful story about the linga is given in the garments but an elephant's skin, riding on a bull, and ac 4th volume of the • As. Res.,' p. 368; and another, which companied by ghosts and goblins. Now this, except that Abbé Dubois states to be derived from the ‘Lainga,' but the unearthly beings who follow him are represented by a which, in fact, is from the 'Padma-Purâna,' may be found crowd of dirty people, is exactly the description of a Saiva in this author's 'Moeurs, &c. des Peuples de l'Inde,' vol. ii., digambara (sky-clad, i.e. naked-a kind of religious mendi- p. 417. But the pure, original, mystical idea, which must cants), if, instead of the god's third eye, we add a round dot undoubtedly have been expressed in the Vedas, is poorly on the nose, made of clay or cow-dung, and a mark on the preserved in the Puranas, and almost entirely lost in the forehead, composed of three curved lines, instead of the daily worship of the present Hindus, who, although without chandra (half-moon) which Rudra obtained at the churning any admixture of obscene thoughts, adore their stone, or the of the ocean. When asked for the reason why they and their image which they make themselves from the clay of the god carry a human skull, they refer to the Vấmana-Purâna: sacred river where they perform their ablutions, in much · Formerly, when all things moveable and immoveable had the same way as an African venerates his fetish. Siva, who been destroyed, and nought remained but one vast ocean.; as the type of the regenerating principle is also that of fire, while universal darkness reigned, that lord who is incom- which quality is represented by a triangle with the apex prehensible and subject to neither birth nor death reposed upwards (A), is the object of a very ludicrous ceremony in slumber on the abyss of the waters for a thousand divine when the heat great. Fearing lest he should set on years; but when his night had passed, desirous of creating fire the whole world, they put above his idol a basin full of the three worlds, he, investing himself with the quality on water with a small aperture at the bottom, in order that the Literally the I-Maker' is the Hindlu term for the power of self-couscious bois, ii., 304.) We need not wonder if the linga worship has

water which drops on him may moderate his ardour. (Dupess, or, what is implied by, this, individuality; for further information sce Yoga,

given rise to sects whose practices are far from admitting

« ΠροηγούμενηΣυνέχεια »