Full text: Wilkins, John: A discovery of a new world

That the Moon may be a World. Eclipſe, relates, that at ſuch time it was a
cuſtom amongſt the Romans (the moſt civil and
Learned People of the World) to ſound Braſs
Inſtruments, and hold great Torches toward
the Heaven. Τῶν δε Ρωμαίων (ὤσπερ {ἐστὶ}ν ἐνομισ {μέν}ον)
χαλκ{οῦ} τε τατό γι; ὰνακαλ{ου} μένων τοφῶς ἀυτῆς {καὶ} πυ{ρὰ}
πολλὰ δαλοῖς {καὶ} δαοτ [?] ίν ἀνε{χό}ντων πρός {οὐ}ῥοανον. For
by this means they ſuppoſed the Moon was
much eaſed in her Labours, and therefore
Ovid calls ſuch loud Inſtruments the Auxilia-
ries or helps of the Moon.


In vita
Paul. Æ-

24. Cum fruſtra reſonant æra auxiliaria Lunæ.

Lib. 4.

And therefore the Satyriſt too, deſcribing a
loud Scold, ſays, ſhe was able to make noiſe
enough to deliver the labouring Moon.

25. Una laboranti poterit ſuccerrere Lunæ.

Sat. 6.

Now the reaſon of all this their Ceremony,
was, becauſe they feared the World would
fall aſleep, when one of its Eyes began to
wink, and therefore they would do what they
could by loud Sounds to rouſe it from its drow-
ſineſs, and keep it awake, by bright Torches,
to beſtow that Light upon it which it began to

Some of them thought hereby to keep the
Moon in her Orb, whereas other wiſe ſhe would
have fallen down upon the Earth, and the
World would have loſt one of its Lights; for
the credulous People believed, that Inchanters
and Witches could bring the Moon down,
which made Virgil ſay,

26. Gantus & è cælo poſſunt deducere Lunam.


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