Titel: First English reading book: Engelsch leesboek voor instituten, gymnasiën en hoogere burgerscholen: met Nederlandsche woordenlijst
Auteur: Herrig, Ludwig
Uitgave: Arnhem: J. Voltelen, 1869 *
Auteursrechten: Zie auteursrechten
Citeerinstructie: Bijzondere Collecties van de Universiteit van Amsterdam, UBM: IWO 513 H 21
Onderwerp: Taal- en letterkunde naar afzonderlijke talen: Engelse taalkunde
Trefwoord: Leesvaardigheid, Engels, Leermiddelen (vorm)
* jaar van uitgave niet op de gebruikelijke wijze verkregen, mogelijk betreft het een schatting
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was known, and that portion was supposed
to be on an extended plane, those who
held a voyage from Crete to Egypt to be
a signal proof of nautical courage, and
who had never reached Sicily or Africa but
by a wayward tempest or by shipwreck,
and who were then objects of wonder at
having escaped the perils of Scylla — the
rocks on the coast of Italy and Sicily; Cha-
rybdis — the neighbouring whirlpool, and
the Syrtes — sand-banks on the northern
coast of Africa, — might justly have fear-
ed for themselves in being committed to
unknown waters, and in tracking shores
which the reports of others who had never
seen them, no less than their own fears,
had invested with horror.
In the course of time, however, it had
been observed that, in addition to the mo-
tions of the sun and moon, certain stars
towards the north never sank below the
horizon, but seemed to move continually
round a definite point. The constant re-
volution of the seven conspicuous stars
forming the hinder part of the Great Bear
were noticed by the Greeks; while a set
of stars which kept on revolving in smaller
circles than these were also observed. This
was the constellation called the Little Bear :
at the top of the tail of which a star is
situated, which is now called the Pole Star.
This is the nearest plainly-visible star to
that point which is on a line with the pole
of the earth, infinitely extended northward.
When the use of these observations had
become familiar by practice, the nautical
art advanced considerably, and various
schemes of enterprise were effected, with
greater or less success.
The Phoenicians were especially celebrated
for commerce, and, consequently, for navi-
gation, long before the Greeks practised
this art. Among them pre-eminence is due
to the people of Tyre, who had a natural
genius for traffic, and were also urged to
seek a foreign commerce from the narrow-
ness and poverty of the slip of ground they
possessed along the coast, as well as from
the convenience of two or three good ports.
Lebanon and the other neighbouring moun-
tains furnished them with excellent wood
for ship-building; and they speedily became
distinguished as navigators. Their pilots
manned the ships of the nations, and con-
ducted the vessels of Solomon over the
Red Sea, the Persian Gulf, the Mediter-
ranean. as far as Tarshish,'the silver coun-
try.' The people of Tyre and Sidon de-
sired and endeavoured to preserve to them-
selves exclusively the trade and commerce
of the world, possessing, as they did, the
privilege of serving the Eg^'ptians and other
people, whose religion deterred them from
pursuing maritime enterprise. The former
dreaded the sea, which swallowed up their
divhiity the Nile, and, therefore , long ceased
to cultivate the naval art. The Phoenicians
were never allowed to enter the Nile; but,
with Tyre and Sidon as their two principal
cities, they engrossed by far the greater
part of the commerce of the world then
known. They brought the gold and gems
and spices of the East from India, Persia,
and other countries, to Tyre and Sidon, by
caravans or land-carriage, and distributed
them, by means of their shipping on the
Mediterranean, among the nations ofthe
West. From an early period, however,
they longed for some port which should
give them command of the navigation of
the Red Sea, and this object they attained
by gaining possession of Rhinocurura , a city
on the boundary between Palestine and
Egypt. By this means they enlarged their
commerce to a vast extent, making the Red
Sea the medium of communication between
the eastern countries and Tyre, instead of
transporting their commodities by land.
Masters of a numerous fleet, constantly
entering on new navigations, they speedily
arrived at so great an extent of population
and wealth as to be able to send out new
colonies. The principal of these was Car-
thage, which, ardently cherishing the spirit
of commerce, not only equaUed but greatly
surpassed Tyre itself, in the course of time,
sending its merchant fleets far and wide
over the surface of the globe.
The Mediterranean Sea, which naturally
seemed to the ancients to be situated, as
its name implies, in the middle of the earth ,
was the scene of the earliest known navi-
gation. As little experience was bequeathed
by a passing generation to one that was
advancing, many ages elapsed before the
Mediterranean, Tyrrhene, Adriatic, and
iEgean Seas were explored. It is probable
that with the Carthaginians originated
the idea of quitting the Mediterranean by
the Straits of Gades, now Gibraltar, of sail-
ing southward, circumnavigating the coast
of Africa , and then returning northward by
the Red Sea, towards the Levant, or
eastern side of the Mediterranean. This
idea was cherished for ages as the erod-
ing enterprise, but which only a sohtary
few, at long intervals of time, determined
to try.
A daring navigator appears in the story
of the Pamphihans, who was taken prisoner,
carried to Egypt, and kept for a very long
time as a slave at a town near one of the