Page:LostApocryphaOfTheOldTestamentMRJames.djvu/29

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11
THE OLD TESTAMENT

No one has made a better conjecture than that the lost book of Lamech had this for its principal subject. Many are the Jewish writers and mediæval Western commentators who tell the story, and through the medium of the latter it became one of the regular episodes to be illustrated in continuous Bible histories of the twelfth and later centuries. In England it may be seen on the west front of Wells Cathedral and in the bosses of the nave of Norwich Cathedral; abroad, on the west front of Bourges, of Auxerre, at Toledo, at Orvieto—all these showing it in sculpture; while in MSS. it is very frequently to be met, and in glass—in "Creation" windows—is by no means uncommon.


Noah

The literature attributed to Noah and his family is various. We hear of writings under his name and under those of his wife and of one of his sons.

The Book of Noah seems nowhere to be mentioned by any ancient writer; but pieces of it have been incorporated with the Book of Enoch and the Book of Jubilees. It must, therefore, be at least as old as the early part of the second century B.C.

The portions of Enoch which Dr. Charles (Jubilees, p. lxxi) describes as Noachic are chapters ii.–xi.; lx.; lxv.–lxix. 25; cvi.–cvii.; and probably xxxix. 1. 2a; xli. 3–8; xliii.–xliv.; liv. 7–lv. 2; lix., but this second set has been modified.

Of these chapters, vi.–xi. contain the story of the fall of the Watchers. The most tell-tale passage is x. 1, where the Most High sends an angel (Arsalaljur, Istrael, or Uriel) "to the son of Lamech, saying, 'Go to Noah and tell him in my name,'" etc.

lx. is a vision, abruptly introduced, concerned largely with the two monsters Leviathan and Behemoth.

lxv. begins: "In those days Noah saw how the earth bowed itself," etc. In 5 the first person appears, and we read of "my grandfather Enoch." lxvii. 1, has, "The word of God came to me and spake, 'Noah, thy