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SUPPOSED TOMB OF LAZARUS. In our volume for 1846, page 49, we gave some account of Bethany, “the town of Mary and her sister Martha." This account includes a description of the reputed tomb of Lazarus, which we reprint for the benefit of those who are not in possession of our former volume.
“ The sepulchre called the Tomb of Lazarus," say the writers of the well-known ‘Mission to the Jews,' "attracted our attention. We lighted our tapers and descended twenty-six steps, cut in the rock, to a chamber, deep in the rock, having several niches for the dead. Whether this be the very tomb where Lazarus lay four days, and which yielded up its dead at the command of Jesus, it is im
possible to say. The common objection that it is too • deep, seems entirely groundless, for there is nothing in the
narrative to intimate that the tomb was on a level with the ground, and besides, it seems not unlikely that there was another entrance to the tomb farther down the slope. A stronger objection is, that the tomb is in the immediate vicinity of the village, or actually in it; but it is possible that the modern village occupies ground a little different from the ancient one."
The force of the latter objection we do not see; but all the arguments adduced are of a negative character. It may not be easy to disprove the tradition that this cave was really the grave of Lazarus; but we have not one tittle of evidence to affirm it. We, nevertheless, give the engraving for its picturesque character, and the interesting associations connected with it.
THE WAY TO THE GIFT. “ You are early a-field,” said I, resuming the conversation. “Do you often walk out at this time of day?”
“ Frequently in summer time; the morning on these hills is so healthful and inviting. I was out before the mists had rolled away or the sun had warmed the valleys my only companions on the road being a busy pair of magpies, before I fell in with Katcawl. I had met him in London at one of our soirées, but knew little else about him, till I found he was at home on some of my favorite subjects this morning, and was tempted to secure his company for a mile or two. But his bigotry breaks out every where; and he began to pester me with his old tune— It's part of a bad system.' We walked at the foot of these hills, and I shewed him how the springs break out along the line that marks their separation from the stiff loam beneath us. You noticed the beautiful head of water where we met : in that little spinney yonder,” he continued, pointing towards the valley, “ there wells up another. Just by those grey walls before us, you may hear the pleasant tinkling of a third ; and near the church, there, a fourth breaks out, running beside the main road through our village, and disappears in the dark arch that bounds the garden of Bathhanan.'
“Bath-hanan !" said I, are we near that?" “ Within a mile or so;" he answered, “ do you know the
“ Some,” replied I, smiling, “as our transatlantic friends
say. But I beg pardon for this interruption-go on."
Well,” resumed the doctor, “I was saying that all along
this line of hills, you will find streams breaking out just at the junction of the porous stratum of the chalk, with the heavy marl which underlies it. I could shew you a score of them in a morning's walk. There! we are just stepping over one; and in that little coomb—that hollow, like a horse-shoe, in the short turf a few yards to your left, it has its rise. Do you hear it ? • Most musical, most melancholy,' it runs along gurgling by the low hedge side, till it joins the stream we have just left, a little below Reedmote, the old ruined farm, whose gable you see just over that group of trees. Here,” he continued, laying his hand upon my arm, “stand still for a few moments, and I will give you an outline of the early history of this valley. You see how abruptly the hills fall towards us on your left; and if you look in the opposite direction, you will see another series rising, but more gradually, from the rich flat beneath us.
Farther on, some six or eight miles, this second range falls in the same manner, and beyond it a gradual ascent of the surface commences, which reaches its highest point just where you see dimly in the blue distance, that old beacon tower at Rookbury. Geologists tell us that this apex was upheaved by some tremendous volcanic agency,—that those hills, and these on which we are standing, were lifted up by the same power, and that their abrupt sides are but the broken edges thus protruded above their original level. An over-sweeping deluge, they say, followed this earthquake, as is usually the case, and washed away all the dislocated fragments, except here and there an old
grey stone or so, lying out upon the surface and looking like a sheep at rest, as you may see at this moment just by that little knot of junipers.”
“ Well,” said I as the doctor paused, “I have had a very pleasant lecture on geology. But I am still without any clue to the means by which you scared away your friend Katcawl.”
“Oh," said the doctor smiling, “ I had almost forgotten that. This upheaving of the hills brought these stiff clays below us to the surface, and thus compelled the reserves of water in the chalk to find a vent here and there all along the line of their junction with it. The earthquake and the deluge were the ministries that sent these springs into the valleys that run among the hills, to give drink to every beast of the field, and
gladden the little birds that sing on the trees that over-shadow them."
“Good,” said I, “doctor, I like your philosophy. He was one, to your own mind who said,
"All nature is but art, unknown to thee,
One truth is clear-whatever is, is right." “There's a good deal of philosophy in that,” said the doctor; “ but I am no great admirer of its author. It was just this partial evil' in a good system that I was pointing out to Katcawl. I was shewing him how the earth had been almost shaken out of its place to lay a platform by which these waters might be stopped in their course downward, when tempted, I suppose, by their clear coolness, he stooped to drink. You saw, perhaps, how he started when I called out, as if he had sipped poison. •Don't touch that stream, it's part of a dreadful
“ But seriously, Enderby, it's a bad sign when men will make little grievances a reason for holding back the hand if they might do a world of good by putting it forth. Don't try,' they say in effect, 'to mend the world, till it is too good to want mending. I have never yet found any human system perfect; but I know this—that I shall do more by studying patiently how to remove or overleap their imperfections, than by declaring open war with them.”
I was no less astonished than delighted to hear the doctor talk in this way. If any one had at one time loved “ oppositions in science, falsely so called,” and “perverse disputings” of all kinds, it was the pragmatical Mr. Sidney Shoveller. But he seemed altogether changed. There was a religious tone too, in his conversation that rejoiced my heart, and made me almost hope that his grey hairs (for a few years had frosted them rapidly) would prove a crown of glory. He seemed to think that some explanation was due to me, for his non-attendance at Springclose, though strictly speaking, I had no right to look for him there, as it was not his parish church. For I