Page:An Essay on the Age and Antiquity of the Book of Nabathaean Agriculture.djvu/24

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8
BABYLONIAN LITERATURE.

and that of the Nabathæans[1] (نبط), the title of Egyptian Agriculture was frequently substituted for Nabathæan Agriculture, and the editor of the Greek Geoponica,[2] J. N. Niclas, even supposed, in 1781, that “The Book of Nabathæan Agriculture” was nothing but a translation of the work of which he published the original text.

A more exact idea was given of “The Book of Nabathæan Agriculture,” when Don Josef Antonio Banqueri published at Madrid, in 1802, the Treatise on Agriculture of Ibn-el-Awwam, which is a kind of abridgment from “The Nabathæan Agriculture.” But the historical interest of the original work entirely disappeared in the abridgment of Ibn-el-Awwam.

It was my learned brother, M. Quatremère, who first[3] studied in its original text

  1. These ancient errors are collected and discussed in Stanley, “Histoire de la Philosophie Orientale,” with notes, by J. Leclerc, pp. 120-121, and Index, at the word Nabateen.
  2. Geoponica, sive Libri de Re Rustica; 4 vols. Lips. 1781.
  3. Herbelot had examined the manuscript, but in an extremely superficial manner. See “Bibliotheque Orientale,” at the words Vahashiah, Nabathi, Cothai, Falahat, Democratis.