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contributed not a little to the shortening of his stay in the country of the Seres. For some time after his advent there, his philosophic meditations on the multiplication table considered as a source of evil were rudely disturbed by a most hideous and awful tumult, which perturbed him not a little, since he perceived that if his disciples were ever to apprehend such a clamour, not only would they ascribe no divinity to sounds, but would even go to the opposite extreme. And on inquiring whence arose this fearful tumult he was answered in Columbarian Greek (the dialect used to communicate with foreigners) that it came from an instrument named the θωμας θωμας, which Bossius conjectures may be probably identified with that which we now call the "tom-tom."*
But a still greater discomfiture awaited our philosopher, and one which threatened to shatter and destroy the very citadel of his system—namely, the divine order and sequence of numbers both in matters terrestrial and celestial. For it happed that playing at astragaloi or dibs with one whom he describes as παιδαριωδέστατος καὶ εὐτραπελώτατος παντων· "of all men most bland and childlike," the cast of sea-born Aphrodite did fall to his opponent nine times in sequence; while he himself could throw nought but the obscene Bow-wow; and this although the bland one professed an entire nescience of the game and a willingness to be instructed in it. So perceiving that such an event could harmonise in no way with the eternal unities and reciprocities, Pythagoras fled straightway from
* But Trench (Fossarius Hibernensis) will not accept this interpretation, showing the mutation of Opas-0μas into tom-tom to be utterly at variance with the laws laid down in the " Fabella" or Fairy Tales of Grimm; and plainly demonstrates that the only musical instrument which will answer both the requirements of history and etymology is the hurdy-gurdy, which is as plainly connected with θωμας θωμας as "tooth" with "dens" or "goose" with "xv."
+ Cervus Californicus maintaineth that the name of the native was Παπᾶι 'Αμαρτία, or Ah Sin.
that land, fearing to meet perchance with some greater mishap.
And going on ever to the rising of the sun he came at last to the country which we call Kamschatka, but which then was named Cynosimus or Dog's Nose, so reaching at last the verge of Asia would have doubtless returned to Greece without any material discovery (save only that the game of astragaloi or dibs containeth in it much food for thought when played by childlike men), but it fell out that walking the sea-shore he observed a strange and remarkable ship moored close to land. And the strangeness of that ship lay in this—that in place of a mast and sails, such as vessels were wont in those days to have, it was furnished with a tube of well-tempered iron, from whence spouted forth smoke, yea black smoke such as is dear to the heart of Below-Ground Zeus. And on the side thereof were inscribed the mystic characters ПOAITHƐ.A',† at which the heart of Pythagoras greatly rejoiced, for he
* And here be it observed that concerning no matter has there been more dispute than concerning the meaning of this word, and no fewer than seven different interpretations have been assigned to the same. And, imprimis, it is argued that the name arises from the land jutting out into the sea somewhat in the shape of a nose: secondly, that it comes from the water round those coasts resembling in colour the liquid called “dog's nose” (which Pillicoddius stiffly maintaineth to have been known to the ancients under the name of “frigidum sine"): thirdly, because the inhabitants of the country were Scythians or Tartars, who as Procuratorius Omniscientius proveth out of Herod. Melp. xxiii.— καὶ σιμοὶ καὶ γένεια ἔχοντες μεγάλα—had fat noses: fourthly, because the land was hilly, which interpretation is supported by Xenophon. Hellenics. N. 3. 23.—πpòs tò σiμòv diwkew, to run up-hill : fifthly, as Vagabundus will have it, because the country is flat, alleging in support of his opinion that the first meaning of σiμóç is flat: sixthly, some assert that the name ariseth from the dolphins that there abound, and bring forward “simum pecus Nerei” that Nonius Marcellus cites out of Livius the old tragedian: seventhly, and last, because the land was inhabited by dogs and apes, which if true is mighty strange and admirable.
Yet the Schoolman Linalaudulus de Tamesi insisteth that the title of the ship was not ΠΟΛΙΤΗΣ.Α', but ΨΑΠΦΑ ΛΑΙΛΟΕΣΣΑ, which he translateth "Saucy Sall."
perceived that now indeed the unities were about to commence. Also besides this he was 'ware of a melodious diapason which proceeded (as he relates) from the ship, exceeding sweet and thrilling, and likewise the noise as of a silver bell, mighty pleasant and tintinnabulous.* And perceiving that the time was now come to dare all things in the cause of philosophy, and calling on the mystic Samothracian divinities ΤΙΝΔΑΛ, ΣΠΕΝΣΕΡ, and ΥΞΛΥ,† he boldly ascended the ship. But the instant he touched the deck the noise that was pleasant and tintinnabulous ceased, and after pouring forth one profuse strain of unpremeditated art, likewise ceased the harmonious diapason; and by some mysterious power Pythagoras was borne away over that unknown sea.
Now concerning his voyage there is no certain record, and although many weighty tomes have been written on the matter, the jejunality of this work doth not suffer me to treat of it; so suffice it to say that after a short and fair journey he was at last, with many diapasons and tintinnabulous rejoicings, landed on the opposite coast. But he had scarcely reached the land when a grave and reverend man accosted him, and hailing him nasiloquently as "stranger" gave him welcome. And after the first greetings were over, and the autochthon had ascertained at how many drachmas the πήχυς Pythagoras had purchased his ἱμάτιον, he informed him that his name was Odysseus B. Podge, Prince of the Caucusidæ,‡ and proposed that they should
* And in confirmation of this refer to the Minervic Disputations of Theodorus Wattsius (the same that wrote the song of the untiring bee that barketh and biteth), who maintains that the noise was even as the noise of a perfect sonnet, whose testimony is strengthened by Proctoratus Omniscientius, who affirms that whatever proceeds from Wattsius is "plainly worded and exactly described."
† Concerning the worship of these deities see Classical Dictionary, articles Pelasgi and Cabeiria. The sacrifices offered to them consisted of the parasites of black swine gathered under the waning moon.
From the fact of the autochthon's name being Odysseus, and his claiming to be Prince of the Caucusidæ, Bossius conjectures that the Americans are of Greek descent, and had formerly dwelt in the Highlands of the Caucasus.
immediately fare unto an adjoining temple and pour libations to the deathless gods. And although it was early in the morning, when the Greeks were not accustomed to perform such rites, Pythagoras denied him not, and going to the temple honey-sweet wine was brought them, which Pythagoras affirms to have been in strength like unto a wall of stone, and they poured libations in the customary manner. But when Pythagoras made known unto the prince the intent and purpose of his voyage-namely, the seeking out of new and strange philosophies and observances-he sware a dreadful oath. For he sware by the eagle that spreads his wings widely extended over the land of the Setting Sun, by the Capitol wherein they cease not to worship the deathless gods, by all the wheeling Stars of heaven, and the grievous Stripes wherewith the gods plague men, that Pythagoras should accomplish his desire and return again to his native land.
And so indeed he performed his vow, and imparted to Pythagoras the whole theory and practice of Pipe Philosophy, and gave him of the herb that is more powerful than moly and sweeter than ambrosia; and after he had sojourned there a long while he again embarked on the magic ship, carrying with him much tobacco and many clay pipes, and so came again to Cynosimus.
From thence he went on his way rejoicing through the country of the Seres, nathless taking much care not to linger in the towns where they were wont to play the θωμας θώμας, nor did he venture aught in the game of astragaloi or dibs, which in his heart he determined to forbid to his disciples as a game unbefitting a philosopher and utterly contrary to all unity and reciprocity.
So, to make a long matter short, Pythagoras returned home by way of Ægypt, then much perturbed by the cabals and discontents of an insolent soldier, who out of the malice of his heart persuading the common folk that they had a just claim to the management and enjoyment of their own country, incited them to revolt. And for a time it was like
to have gone hard with Pharaoh, but he called on Gelon, Tyrant of Syracuse, to assist him in his hour of need. And Gelon, out of the great goodness and benevolence of his heart, thinking not at all of any gain or reward accruing to himself, did presently send a mighty fleet of ships, furnished with many banks of oars, and armed with all manner of tormentuous engines, both petroboli and catapeltæ, by which the people of Ægypt were soon utterly overcome and smashed. And the counsellors of Gelon were no less wise at home than in the wars; for perceiving that the vulgar folk did in some sort animadvert on the sending of the ships, they employed certain machines of burnished steel, cunningly contrived for the purpose by geometers, wherewith they blinded the eyes of the people so that they might not perceive what was being accomplished.
But when the land was conquered and laid waste, and Pharaoh thought to have been received back to the throne, Gelon did, more scholastico, make perfect a juncture between his thumb and his nose, and so mocked him, bidding him journey to the City of the Waters of the Sun (which men do now call Bath), or if he liked not that, to the City of Palm Trees, which is Jericho. And so Pharaoh, being in the hieroglyphical language of Egypt " done brown," ceased to reign, and Gelon of Syracuse reigned in his stead, and his descendants after him, even until the Gauls overran the whole world from Jerusalem to Madagascar.
And Pythagoras carefully considering all these matters, yet forgot not the multiplicity of chests of cedar-wood he bore with him, wherein was stored the precious herb. And in the dead of night he would often secretly light his pipe and smoke without hindrance, till the fumes being apprehended he was accused of gramarye, and so driven from the land. But when he came to Croton in Italy he called together such as he deemed worthy, and imparted to them the great secret whereat they rejoiced mightily, and proceeded to test the greatness thereof by experiment. And though at the first some were perturbed both in body and