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years. Joshua conquered Palestine by the two decisive battles of Beth-horon and the waters of Merom, and divided the land among the twelve tribes. Judges ruled Israel nearly six hundred years.
Saul, being anointed as king, subdued the enemies of the Jews; but, becoming disobedient, he was slain in battle, and David became king, first of Judah, and afterward of all Israel. He made Jerusalem his capital, and extended his dominion over Syria and Moab, and eastward to the Euphrates. His sacred songs are the source of his enduring fame. Solomon inherited the kingdom, which he enriched by commerce and adorned with magnificent public works, both for sacred and secular uses. The Dedication of the Temple is the great era in Hebrew chronology. The wisdom of Solomon was widely famed, but the luxury of his court exhausted his kingdom, and on the accession of Rehoboam ten tribes revolted, only Judah and Benjamin remaining to the house of David.
Jeroboam fixed his capital at Shechem, and the shrines of his false gods at Bethel and Dan. In spite of the faithful warnings of the prophets, the kingdom of Israel became idolatrous. The nineteen kings who ruled B. C. 975-721 belonged to nine different families. Ahab and Jezebel persecuted true believers and established Tyrian idolatry; but their race was exterminated and Jehu became king. The Ten Tribes reached their greatest power and wealth under Jeroboam II. In the reign of Menahem they became subject to Pul, of Chaldæa. A revolt of Hoshea against Assyria led to the capture of Samaria, and the captivity of both king and people.
The kingdom of Judah, with a smaller territory, had a people more united in faith and loyalty, and was ruled four hundred years by descendants of David. Jehoshaphat made a close alliance with Ahab, which brought many calamities upon Judah. In the reign of Jehoram, Jerusalem was taken by Arabs and Philistines; and after the death of Ahaziah, Athaliah, daughter of Jezebel, usurped the throne. Joash, her grandson, was protected and crowned by Jehoiada, the high priest. The prosperity of Judah was restored by the conquests and efficient policy of Azariah. Ahaz became tributary to Tiglath-pileser, of Assyria, and degraded his kingdom with idolatry. Hezekiah resisted both the religion and the supremacy of the heathen. Manasseh was carried captive to Babylon, and on his return reformed his administration. Josiah cleansed the land from marks of idolatry, rebuilt the Temple, discovered the Book of the Law, and renewed the celebration of the Passover. The Scythians invaded Palestine. Josiah was slain in the battle of Megiddo, and his sons became vassals of Egypt. Nebuchadnezzar subdued both Egypt and Palestine, captured Jerusalem, and transported two successive kings and the mass of the people to Babylon.
QUESTIONS FOR REVIEW.
BOOK I.-PART I.
1. What are the sources of historical information ?
2. Describe the character and movements of the three families of the sons
3. Into what periods may history be divided?
4. Name six primeval monarchies in Western Asia.
5. What were the distinguishing features of the Chaldæan Monarchy?
8. Describe the founder of the Lower Assyrian Empire.
9. What memorials exist of Sargon?
10. Describe the career of Sennacherib.
5, 6. 7, 8.
11. What was the condition of Assyria under Asshur-bani-pal? 12. What under his son?
13. What was the early history of Media ?
14. What of Phraortes?
15. Describe the reign of Cyaxares.
The character of the Babylonians.
22. Describe the Phoenician cities and their commerce.
The career of Merodach-baladan.
The empire of Nabopolassar.
The conquests and reverses of the greatest Babylonian mon-
The decline and fall of Babylon.
23. To what four kingdoms were they successively subject?
24. Describe the religion of the Phoenicians.
25. What were the divisions of Syria Proper?
26. Describe the rise of the Jewish nation.
Their conquest of Palestine.
Their government during the First Period.
The conquests and character of David.
The acts and wisdom of Solomon.
32. What changes occurred at his death?
33. Compare the two kingdoms.
34. What was the policy of Jeroboam ?
35. Describe the reign of Ahab.
36. What kings of Israel had dealing with Assyria?
37. Mention three kings of Judah who had wars with Israel.
39 Describe the reign of Azariah; of Ahaz, Hezekiah, Manassel. 40.
The events of Josiah's reign.
The relations of three kings with Babylon,
58, 59. 61-64.
96-100, 105, 106. 97, 98. 101.
100, 101. 101.
106-108. 109-112. 113.
PART II. AFRICAN NATIONS.
GEOGRAPHICAL OUTLINE OF AFRICA.
114. The continent of Africa differs in many important respects from that of Asia. The latter, extending into three zones, has its greatest extent in the most favored of all, the North Temperate. Africa is almost wholly within the tropics, only a small portion of its northern and southern extremities entering the two temperate zones, where their climate is most nearly torrid. Asia has the loftiest mountains on the globe, from which flow great rivers spreading fertility and affording every means of navigation. Africa has but two great rivers, the Nile and the Niger, and but few mountains of remarkable elevation.
115. Africa is thus the hottest, driest, and least accessible of the continents. One-fifth of its surface is covered by the great sea of sand which stretches from the Atlantic nearly to the Red Sea. Much of the interior consists of marshes and impenetrable forests, haunted only by wild beasts and unfit for human habitation. With the exception of a very few favored portions, Africa is therefore unsuited to the growth of great states; and it is only through two of these, Egypt and Carthage, that it claims an important part in ancient history.
116. NORTHERN AFRICA alone was known to the ancients, and its features were well marked and peculiar. Close along the Mediterranean lay a narrow strip of fertile land, watered by short streams which descended from the Atlas range. These mountains formed a rocky and scantily inhabited region to the southward, though producing in certain portions. abundance of dates. Next came the Great Desert, varied only by a few small and scattered oases, where springs of water nourished a rich vegetation. South of the Sahara was a fertile inland country, near whose large rivers and lakes were cities and a numerous population; but these central African states were only visited by an occasional caravan which crossed the desert from the north, and had no political connection with the rest of the world.
117. In the western portion of Northern Africa, the mountains rise more gradually by a series of natural terraces from the sea, and the fertile country here attains a width of two hundred miles. This well watered, fruitful, and comparatively healthful region, is one of the most favored on the globe. In ancient times it was one vast corn-field from the Atlas to the Mediterranean. Here the native kingdom of Mauritania flourished;
GEOGRAPHICAL OUTLINE OF AFRICA.
and after it was subdued by the Romans, the same fertile fields afforded bread to the rest of the civilized world.
118. Eastward from Mauritania the plain becomes narrower, the rivers fewer, and the soil less fertile, so that no great state, even if it had originated there, could have long maintained itself. The north-eastern corner of the continent, however, is the richest and most valuable of all the lands it contains. This is owing to the great river which, rising in the highlands of Abyssin'ia, and fed by the perpetual rains of Equatorial Africa, rolls its vast body of waters from south to north, through a valley three thousand miles in length. Every year in June it begins to rise; from August to December it overflows the country, and deposits a soil so rich that the farmer has only to cast his grain upon the retiring waters, and abundant harvests spring up without further tillage.
119. The soil of Egypt was called by its inhabitants the "Gift of the Nile." In a climate almost without rain, this country without its river would, indeed, have been only a ravine in the rocky and sandy desert; as barren as Sahara itself. The prosperity of the year was, from the earliest. times, accurately measured by the Nilometers at Memphis and Elephan'tine. If the water rose less than eighteen feet, famine ensued; a rise of from eighteen to twenty-four feet betokened moderate harvests; twentyseven feet were considered "a good Nile;" a flood of thirty feet was ruinous, for, in such a case, houses were undermined, cattle swept away, the land rendered too spongy for the following seed-time, the labor of the farmer was delayed, and often fevers were bred by the stagnant and lingering waters. Usually, however, the Nile was the great benefactor of the Egyptians, and was considered a fit emblem of the creating and preserving Osiris. Its waters were carefully distributed by canals and regulated by dykes. During the inundation, the country appeared like a great inland lake girdled by mountains. Lower Egypt, or the Delta, was compared by Herodotus to the Grecian Archipelago, dotted with villages which appeared like white islands above the expanse of waters.
120. Lower Egypt is a vast plain; Upper Egypt a narrowing valley. The fertile portion of the latter occupies only a part of the space between the Lib'yan Desert and the sea. In its widest part it is less than eleven, in its narrowest only five miles in width; and in some places the granite or limestone cliff springs directly from the river. Being so well fitted to support a numerous people, the whole valley of the Nile, through Nubia and Abyssinia as well as Egypt, was very early colonized from the opposite shores of Asia. The hair, features, and form of the skull represented in the human figures on the monuments, prove the dominant race in these countries to have been of the same great family with the people on the neighboring peninsula of Arabia.
121. Before the conquests of the Persians, Northern Africa was divided A. H.-7.
between five nations: the Egyptians, Ethiopians, Phoenicians, Libyans, and Greeks.
122. The ETHIOPIANS occupied the Nile Valley above Egypt, including what is now known as Abyssinia. The great plateau between the headwaters of the Nile and the Red Sea is rendered fertile by frequent and abundant rains; and the many streams which descend from it to the Nile cause in part the yearly overflow which fertilizes Egypt. Mer'oë was the chief city of the Ethiopians. Some learned men have supposed its monuments of architecture and sculpture to be even older than those of Egypt.
123. Arabian traditions say that the inhabitants of the northern coasts of Africa were descendants of the Canaanites whom the Children of Israel drove out of Palestine. As late as the fourth century after Christ, two pillars of white marble near Tangier still bore the inscription in Phoenician characters: "We are they that fled from before the face of the robber Joshua, the son of Nun." Whether or not this legend expressed a historical fact, it expressed the wide-spread belief of the people; and it is well known by other evidence that the African coasts of the Mediterranean were very early dotted with PHOENICIAN settlements, such as the two Hip'pos, Utica, Tu ́nes, Hadrume'tum, Lep'tis, and greatest of all, though among the latest, Carthage.
124. The LIBYANS occupied a greater portion of Northern Africa than any other nation, extending from the borders of Egypt to the Atlantic Ocean, and from the Great Desert, with the exception of the foreign settlements on the coast, to the Mediterranean Sea. They had, however, comparatively little power, consisting chiefly as they did of wandering tribes, destitute of settled government or fixed habitations. In the western and more fertile portion, certain tribes of Libyans cultivated the soil and became more nearly civilized; but these were soon subjected to the growing power of the Phoenician colonies.
125. The GREEKS possessed a colony on that point of Northern Africa which approached most nearly to their own peninsula. They founded Cyre'ne about B. C. 630, and Barca about seventy years later. They had also a colony at Naucra'tis in Egypt, and probably upon the greater oasis. The history of these Grecian settlements will be found in Book III.
HISTORY OF EGYPT.
I. The Old Empire, from earliest times to
II. Middle Empire, or that of the Shepherd Kings, III. The New Empire,
126. From the island of Elephantine to the sea, a distance of 526 miles,
B. C. 1900.