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PART IV.

CIIRONOLOGICAL TABLES, STATISTICS FROM THE CENSUS, EXPLANATION OF POPULAR TECHNICAL TERMS, AND

MISCELLANEOUS ITEMS.

CHRONOLOGICAL AND HISTORICAL TABLE.

History, with regard to the nature of its subjects, is divided into sacred and profune.

Sacred history is the history contained in the Scriptures, and relates principally to the Jews.

Profune history is the history of ancient heathen nations, and is found chiefly in the writings of the Greeks and Romans.

Sacred history goes back to the remotest period of time; and in it only we have an account of the creation of the world.

This is generally computed to have been 4004 years before the Christian era, and 1656 before the Deluge.

EGYPT.—This country, the scene of many incidents related in the holy Scriptures, contained in the earliest times a great and ingenious people. Here the Israelites were in bondage; and here it is said, was the cradle of science. The magi were certainly very ingenious even in the time of Moses; and the pyramids, built in those early days, and still standing, are one of the wonders of the world.

Their catacombs are also a great curiosity : these are subterranean galleries of great extent, appropriated to the reception of the dead.

The ancient Egyptians fere skilled in the art of embalming; and some of their bodies are still found in a state of preservation.

The country is covered with ruins of great cities, temples, and works of art; and these are covered with hieroglyphical representations, which the Egyptians used instead of letters. Egypt is in Africa, and its great river is the Nile, which at stated periods overflows : it is now a Mohammedan country, half-civilized, and densely peopled.

The Jews left Egypt 1491 years before the coming of Christ.

CANAAN. -The Canaanites, generally called Phænicians, were the inventors of letters, and one of the earliest civilized nations. Tyre and Sidon, the most ancient cities of which we read, were Phoenician cities. They are now solitary places.

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ASSYRIA ---This great empire of antiquity derived its namo from Ashur, the son of Shem, the founder of the city of Nineveh. Babylon, under Nimrod, becanic the seat of government, and here reigned Nebuchadnezzar and Belshazzar. It was conquered by Cyrus, king of Persia ; and, according to the predictions of prophecy, its very foundations were blotted out. For hundreds of years, nothing but a mound of earth has appeared of Babylon, the great; but now, an enterprising English traveller, Mr. Layard, is excavating this mound, and making the most wonderful discoveries. He is finding things described by Daniel twenty-three hundred years ago ; and the throne of the kings and their banqueting-balls have been discovered.

Cyrus took Babylon about 530 years before Christ.

PERSIA.—This was the Edom of Scripture, and became a very powerful country. It at one time comprehended Persia, Media, Parthia, Assyria, Syria, Asia Minor, and Egypt, and was finally conquered by Alexander the Great from Greece. This happened about 330 years before Christ.

Phænicia, Assyria, and Persia were in Asia.

GREECE.—Greece became a civilized country while Persia was in its glory, and finally its philosophers, poets, orators, and statesmen excelled those of all the world. It was a small country in Europe, and divided into many little states and independent cities; but its arms and arts became an overmatch for the rest of the world ; and its institutions of learning and its laws were for a long time models for all mankind.

The Greeks were fond of freedom; a handsome, mercurial, and most ingenious race; they excelled in music, painting, sculpture and architecture, poetry and eloquence; and the productions of their artists and writers, their statues, houses, poems and orations are still unequalled by those of any other people, ancient or modern.

They had many profound philosophers; and some of these taught the immortality of the soul, the doctrine of rewards and punishments in a future state, and the existence of one eternal, omnipotent Author of all things. Their language was studied in all civilized countries; and in this language wrote the apostles. Greece, was gradually conquered by the Romans about two hundred

years before Christ. ROME.—This second great empire of the West, or of Europe, was founded about seven hundred years before Christ, and became, at last, mistress of the world. The Romans were a warlike people; and in time, they conquered nearly all the known world, and governed Judea at the coming of our Saviour.

About three hundred and six years after Christ, Constantine,

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called Constantine the Great, Emperor of Rome, was converted to Christianity: and from that time it became a Christian state. But corruption and effeminacy of manners sapped the foundations

power; and barbarians from the north of Europe took province after province, till at last the Roman Empire was no more.

From its ruins gradually sprang up the present states of Europe ; and these, becoming christianized, grew in civilization and its arts till they became the chief powers of the world.

The territories of ancient Greece and Rome are still covered with ruins of temples, houses, aqueducts, fountains, and other beautiful and magnificent works of art.

THE DARK AGES.—The period immediately succeeding the fall of the Roman Empire is called the dark age of history. Civilization seemed overwhelmed with an avalanche of barbarism following in the track of the northern hordes who swept over the Roman territories in Europe. The Roman Empire, about the end of the third century after Christ, became divided into the Eastern and Western empires; the seat of the latter was at Rome of the former at Constantinople. It was in the fifth century that barbarians overran the Western empire ; that of the East lasted until the fifteenth century. The intervening time from the fifth to the fifteenth century is called the dark ages; but in the Eastern empire there still remained some of the arts and learning of civilization.

In those dark and gloomy times, the human mind became debased with ignorance and superstition--the Christian religion degenerated into a system of absurd mummeries, and the morals of the whole community were at the lowest ebb. The political state of the country was characterized by violence, anarchy, and rapine.

THE SARACENS.—When Western Europe was sunk in barbarism, the Saracens, a tribe of Arabs in Asia, enjoyed a comparative degree of civilization. Among these people, partially christianized, appeared in the year 609, Mohammed, a man then forty years

of age, a pative of Mecca, pretending to have a divine commission to propagate a new religion.

His creed was in a book called the Alcoran or Koran; and its leading doctrine was, “ There is but one God, and Mohammed is his prophet.” Mohammed taught that others, as Abraham, Moses, and Jesus Christ, had been divinely commissioned to teach mankind; but that he himself was the last and greatest of the prophets.

With the sword he propagated his faith; and in one hundred years from the first preaching of this eastern fanatic, the dominions of his successors extended from India to the Atlantic, comprehending Persia, Asia Minor, and Syria, in Asia, Egypt and the north of Africa in Africa, and Spain in Europe.

That branch of the Saracens who held Spain were called Moors, · and there they lived in splendour from the eighth century till the year

1492, when their last possessions were wrested from them by the Spaniards. The war between the races lasted seven hundred years. The great Saracen Empire, the seat of which was at Bag. dad for several centuries, terminated in the thirteenth century : but the Mohammedan religion remained in all its former territories.

THE CRUSADES.—The crusades were wars undertaken by the Christians of Europe for the recovery of the Holy Land. From the fifth to the fifteenth century, the nations of Southern and Western Europe were gradually emerging from barbarism; the Christian religion, not wholly lost in the fall of Rome, grew into the character of the new, vigorous, and warlike nations of the west, and from year to year, while it modified their barbarous natures, it also improved their forms of government, expanded their sympathies, and controlled their affections.

It became finally a sort of passion; and in the year 1096, all Europe became agitated with a desire to visit the scenes hallowed by the footsteps of Christ, and to rescue the place of his burial from the possession of the Saracens. These wars lasted from the year 1096 till 1270, and their history is full of wild and thrilling interest.

THE AGE OF CHIVALRY.—The crusades gave birth to the chivalry of history; at least, they gave to it new and brighter lustre. This was the age of romance; the human heart, thawing under the influence of Christianity, began to blossom with noble sentiments, which gave a new relish to human life. Deference to the female sex, devotion to beauty and innocence, and a love of dangerous enterprises, undertaken to relieve the unjustly oppressed, the captive, and the weak, were the distinguishing traits of chivalry; and during its reign, all Europe was on horseback, scouring the fields and woods in search of adventure.

This age of chivalry ushered in the more glorious ERA OF CHRISTIAN CIVILIZATION. This may be said to have dawned in the thirteenth century; and by the seventeenth, the nations of Europe had advanced to a state of refinement, morality, knowledge, and social and political comfort unparalleled in the former history of the world.

From the beginning of the seventeenth century, the progress of Europe, and America, settled by her, has been still more rapid; and if this progress is not impeded by revolutions and convul. sions, the philanthropist may anticipate the most glorious things for the human race.

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AMERICAN HISTORY is exceedingly interesting, and full of instructive lessons.

Christopher Columbus, a native of Genoa, in Italy, discovered America on the 11th of October, 1492; that is, he arrived in sight of St. Salvador, one of the Bahama Islands on that day.

He was in search of a western passage to the East Indies; and hence he gave to the islands which he found the name of the West Indies, and the natives of all this new country were called Indians.

America was so called from Americus Vespucius, who discovered part of the coast of South America the next year after the continent had been discovered by Columbus.

Columbus was in the employ of the Spanish government; and his discoveries caused an immense accession of wealth and greatness to that nation.

In the year 1584, Sir Walter Raleigh arrived in America, and took possession of Roanoke Island, and of all the country within two hundred leagues.

Attempts were made to form settlements in what is now NorthCarolina; but the first permanent settlement by the English was at Jamestown, in Virginia, in 1607.

On the 4th of July, 1776, the representatives of the English American colonies declared themselves and their constituents a free, independent people; and after a war of seven years, this independence was recognised by England on the 3d of September, 1783.

In the year 1787, the Constitution of the United States was formed; and North-Carolina accepted and ratified it in 1789. She was the last State but one to come into the Union : Rhode Island was the last, and came in in the year

1790.

In 1789, General Washington was chosen first President, and served two terms, 8 years in all. John Adams succeeded in 1797, and served four

years. Thomas Jefferson came in in 1801, and served 8; James Madison next served 8; James Monroe 8; John Quincy Adams (son of John Adams) 4; General Jackson 8; Martin Van Buren 4; General W. H. Harrison, inaugurated in 1811, served one month, when he died, on the 4th of April, 1841, and was succeeded by the Vice-President, John Tyler, who served 3 years and 11 months. James K. Polk next served 4 years, and was succeeded in 1849 by General Zachary Taylor, who died on the 8th of July, 1850, something over a year, and was succeeded by the Vice-President, Millard Fillmore.

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