Page:An Essay on the Age and Antiquity of the Book of Nabathaean Agriculture.djvu/57

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founder of a religion and benefactor of mankind, is Ἀσκληπιός (Æsculapius),[1] or rather Ἀσκληπιάδης. The part which is assigned to Asclepius in the apocryphal Hermesian legends is well known. Ibn-Abi-Oceibia[2] takes a singular mythology of Æsculapius from a Syriac work; in another place[3] he connects him expressly with Babylon. It is strange that Dr. Chwolson attaches any importance to such chimeras. He even supposes that his Askolábita[4] must be considered as the prototype of the Asklepios of the Greeks. In the same ephemeral spirit he asks in another place[5] whether Asklepios and Hermes were not, in reality, ancient sages deified after their death.[6]

  1. The termination سا‎ causes very diverse readings. I think that here is to be seen a schin, remains of the final os. M. Quatremère reads it Kalousha.
  2. “Journal Asiatique,” August-Sept. 1854, p. 181.
  3. Ibid. p. 185.
  4. Page 19.
  5. Page 96.
  6. Ibn Wahshíya is often quoted as having translated the Book on Agriculture of Democrates or Democrites, surnamed الرومى‎ (Herbelot, Bibl. Orientale, at the word Democratis; Wenrich, De Auct. Græc. vers. p. 92, 93; Larsow, De Dialect Syr. reliquiis, p. 12, note). But the conclusions which are attempted to be drawn from this fall to the ground, since the ascribing to Ibn Wahshíya