nagements peculiar, in a manner, to the Egyptians.

Bilhop Patrick, in his commen- tary on this palfage, takes notice of thefe Egyptian cqfinr of [via- mbre-‘wood and of pafleilxoard; but he doth not mention the contrary ufage in the neighbouring coun- tries, which was requifite, one might fuppofe, in order fully to illulirate the place: but even this, perhaps, would not have conveyed the whole idea of the facred author. lVlaillet apprehends, that all were not inclofed in coliins, who were laid in the Egyptian repofitories of the dead, but that it tvas an honour appropriated to perfons of figure; for, after having given an account of feveral niches found in thofe chambers of death, he adds, (Let. vii. p. 281.) But it mull: not be imagined that the bodies de- pofited in thefe gloomy apartments were all inclofed in Cbtfii, and placed in niches. The greatell: part were {imply embalmed and fwathed, after that manner which every one hath fome notion of; af- ter which they laid them one by the fide of another without any ce- remony. Some were even put in- to thefe tombs without any em- balming at all; or fuch a flight one, that there remains nothirg of them in the linen in which they were wrapped, but the bones, and thofe half rotten. It is probable, that each confiderable family had one of thefe burial-places to them- felves; that the niches were de- figned for the bodies of the heads of the family, and that thofe of their domeftics and ilaves, had no other care taken of them, than the laying them on the ground, af- ter having been embalmed, or even


without that; which, without doubt, was alfo all that was done, even to the heads of families of lefs diflinétion.” After this he gives an account of a way of bu- rial, prafitiied anciently in that country, which had been but late difcovercd, and which confilted in placing the bodies after they were fwathed up, on a layer of charcoal, and covering them with a mat, un- der a depth offand of feven or eight feet.

That ruflin: then were not uni- verfally ufed in Egypt, is un- doubted from thefe accounts, and, probably, they were only perfons of diltinction who were buried in them. It is alfo reafonable to be- lieve, that: in times fo remote as thofc of jofeph, they might be much lefs common than afterwards, and, confequently, that ]ofeph’s being put into a cofiin in Egypt might be mentioned with a defign to exprefs the great honours which the Egyptians did him in death, as well as in life, being interred after the mofl: fumptuous manner of the Egyptians, emfialmed, and put in a cojfrz. Agreeably t0 this, the Septuagint verfion, which was made for Egyptians, feerns to re- prefent coffins as a mark of gran- deur, job xxi. 32.

It is no objection to this account, that the widow of Nain’s fon is reprefented as carried forth to be buried in a 2090;, [jbras], or an a éier; for the prefent inhabitants of the Levant, who are well known to lay their dead bodies in the earth uninclofed, carry them fre- quently out to burial ina kind of coffin. So Dr. Ruifel in particu- lar defcribes the éier ufed for the

Turks at Aleppo, as a kind of caf- 8 fin,