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up, &c. v. 12. And plainer yet, v. 19 and 20. O Lord, to thee will I cry, for the Fire bat deftroyed the Paftures of the Wilderness, and t Flame bath burnt all the Trees of the Field: Tu Beasts of the Field cry alfo nnto thee, for th Rivers of Water are dried up, and the Fire bath devoured the Pastures of the Wilderness. All which Expreffions feem plainly to fhow, that this heavy Judgment fhall be effeded particularly by exceffive and præternatural Heats, occafioned either by a more fr quent appearance and defcent of Meteon; or from a more vigorous and intense Fer mentation, in thofe Bodies which are the ordinary Inftruments of Light and Heat to us; or elfe from fome Disorders in the Body of the Earth, occafioned by Eruptions of its Central Fire; or at least by fome nearer approaches of it to its Superficies, which about this time may be expected, as we obferved before; or elfe perhaps from the concurrence of both these Caufes together.

Blights II. THE Second Reafon is, That all the and Mil- other ufual Caufes of Famines are reducidews, &c. ble to the afore-mentioned. These are imputed to Blights, Mildews, and devouring Infects, viz. The Palmer-Worm, Grafhopper, Ca. terpiller, &c. mentioned in the afore-quoted Place of Joel; all which are certainly oc cafioned and produced by Heat. As for Blights, &c. not to mention the Names ufed to express them by both Greeks and Latins (fuch are Uredo, Kaufuès, &c.) Every Seafon furnishes us with fenfible Demonftrations of their hot and burning Quali


ties; fuch as may be difcerned by the Look, Touch, and Smell of Fruits, Leaves, or Herbs that have been touched by them: What may be the primary and Original Cause of thefe Meteors (for fo I am forced to call them, not knowing to what Class of Nature to reduce them) or wherein those burning Qualities do confift, is hard to say; but it is very probable, that they are nothing else but condenfed Vapours, deeply impregnated with hot and dry Effluviums, proceeding from fome of the Heavenly Bodies. Which may probably be further illuftrated (not to fay confirmed) by confidering the Seasons in which they happen, and which of the Heavenly Bodies are prædominant in that Seafon. Now there were fome critical Seafons obferved by the Ancients, in which Blights, &c. were more common and ordinary: Such were particularly the Calends of May, on the VIIth of which, i. e. April the 25th New Stile, the Romans obferved a Feftival, called Robigalia, inftituted to implore the Bleffing of their God Robigus (whom they fuppofed to prefide over the Fruits of the Earth) that their Corn might be preferv'd from Blights. See Plin. 18. 29. From whence, in aftertimes, the Chriftians took an Occafion of inftituting Solemn Fafts and Proceffions, called to this Day Rogation-Week; by the Old Britains, Gang-Week; in Latin, Ambarvalia; because then the Bishop or Presbyter, with the People, did use to walk too and fro in the Fields, with the Hoft or confecrated Elements, and beg a Bleffing

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upon the Fruits of the Earth. At that time, according to the Computation then in ufe, the Sun was between 10 and 14 Degrees of Taurus 8. And the true Cause of keeping that Festival upon that parti cular time, Rofinus (Lib. 4. Cap. 7.) fays was this: That 19 Degrees after the Vernal Aquinox, for four Days together, according to the Obfervation of divers Nations, a hot, dry, and angry Conftellation, called Canis Major, or the Great Dog, was used to fet (Achronically I fuppofe he means, as it appears by rectifying the Globe to the Latitude of Rome.) But Goad, in his Aftrometeorol. Sana, p. 92. fays, It was not only upon that Account, but because about that time there did Arife and Set with the Sun an illuftrious Company of Stars; meaning the Hyades and Pleiades, upon the Neck and Head of Taurus: Which Stars, as indeed the whole Afterifm of Taurus, he fays (upon Ptolomy's Authority) have both Qualities, hot and cold, in them. And though they (efpecially the former) have been diftinguished by their watry Qualities, from whence they have their Denomination,

Jew, yet he says, pag. 90. That those Parts of Taurus about the Pleiades, occafion Earthquakes, Clouds and Wind; those about the Hyades are of a fiery Nature, and produce Thunder and Lightning, for which he alledges many Reafons; (fee the place.) Now every one knows, that thofe Meteors are produced by great Quantities of Nitrofulphurious Particles, which must be ei ther exhaled from the Body of the Earth,


by the exceffive Heat of these Bodies; or emitted immediately from these Bodies themselves; which may not improbably defcend in a watry Vehicle. Be it which way it will, it feems to amount to fome I Proof, that the grand inftrumental Cause of thefe Appearances is exceffive Heat: And how much more do we think those Effects fhould be produced; if, befides these common and ordinary Causes, there fhould be at the fame time a concurrence of fome accidental Disorders in those Bodies, which should render their natural Qualities more intenfe and piercing. I would not here be fuppofed to think, that Blights, Mildews, c. are fo appropriated to this Seafon, which I have been speaking of, as not to fall alfo at other times: But this Seafon is particularly remarkable, because of the Condition of the Corn and other Fruits; as being, if not in Bloffom, yet of fo tender a confiftency, as to be affected by any the leaft touch of malign Influences. But to return, this fame thing feems to be hinted by the Apochryphal Author of the 2d Book of Efdras, Chap. 15. where fpeaking, v. 5. of the laft fore Plagues, the Sword, Famine, Death and Deftruction (or Peftilence) which God would bring upon the World; when (v. 6.) Wickedness fhall bave exceedingly polluted the whole Earth, and the Measure of their Iniqui ties fhall be filled up. He fays (v. 12.) Ægypt (ie. Myftical Egypt, or the whole Earth, this World in which God's Children are kept in Bondage or Slayery, Compare v.6,7,8,9,10,

That de

11, 12, 13, 14.) shall mourn, and the Founda tion of it shall be Smitten with the Plague and Punishment that God fhall bring upon it. V. 13. They that till the Ground fhall mourn, for their Seeds Shall fail, through the Blasting and Hail, and with a fearful Constellation.

III. As for the Second fort of Caufes, vouring devouring Infects, that they are produced Infects are by Heat, we have aftrong Prefumption produced from an Obfervation common amongst us, by Heat.

that they abound most in hot and dry Seafons; befides what Bochartus has obferved, Zeograph. Sanita, Lib. 4. Cap. 6. and Cap. 4. in both which Places he exprefly afferts, That Drougth is the Caufe of Locufts and other devouring Infects. But as to the precife manner of their Production, whether it be æquivocal, i. e, by fome latent Seeds in the Superficies of the Earth, which are impregnated by the Sun, or other aftral Influences; or univocally, by the common concurrence of Male and Female, is hard to determine. However, the former Opinion feems more probable, because it is difficult to conceive how the Heat can be any way inftrumental in the latter way; much less how it can be faid to be a Caufe, as Bochart and others have afferted upon the Authority of the Ancients.


A Recapi § 6. WITH this three-fold Evil, viz. tulation of Sword, Peftilence, and Famine, will God thefe three chaftife the Apoftate Antichriftian World


in the latter Days, 2 Efdras 15. 14. Wo to the World and them that dwell therein, a Fire is kindled and fhall not be put out, till it confume the Foundations of the Earth. Behold Famine,


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