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listening to the instructions of the older ones, in the doctrines of Hamzé. These 'Ockāls must have nothing to do with the politics of the world, neither must they drink wine, smoke tobacco, nor swear; but be temperate in all things. There is no doubt, however, that these secret lodges play an important part of their national action, for nothing fills the other sects with such disquieting surmises as when they see some white turbaned and white bearded ’Ockāl wending his way quietly from one khulwy to another.
As may be surmised, the Jehal, or Uninitiated, or worldly Druzes, form a majority of the nation, and they really have no religion whatever; for unless they pledge themselves to all the renunciations and simple habits of the Druze Puritans, they are not allowed to step foot into the khulwy, or learn any more about their faith than a Mohammedan or Christian.
The establishment of the sect in Mt. Lebanon was largely owing to the labors and preaching of one of Hamzé's missionaries, named Neshtakeen Darazi, who was also a Persian. Darazi, however, it seems, after having met with such success, began to think that instead of working for Hamzé, he might better set up for himself, and accordingly commenced a grievous schism in the new sect, by teaching that he was somebody, it is difficult now to find out exactly what. This brought down upon him a fearful excommunication from Hamzé, which was followed up by a decree from Hakem, deposing him from his apostleship, while Hamzé lost no time in several earnest epistles to reveal to the Unitarians the alarming fact that Darazi was no other than Satan, or the Rival, himself! The Druzes have ever since, therefore, held Darazi in particularly bad odor, and, it is said, bestow upon him a weekly cursing in their khulwies. But unfortunately, as Darazi was, on account of the secresy of their proceedings, much better known to the outsiders in Syria, than Hamzé, they soon acquired the name of Druzes, from which they vainly tried at first to divest themselves; then failing in that they attempted to derive it from the Arabic noun durs, which means a skillful or able man. This, however, is undoubtedly false, and the Druzes present the curious and unique spectacle of a sect called after their own devil! Darazi, however, was not the last who troubled this singular flock, for so many divisions arose soon after Hamze's death, from ambitious imitators, that Boháeddin and Mohammed et Temeemi, the surviving incarnations, apparently having abandoned the hope of spreading the sect any further, and wishing to keep what they got, took the unprecedented step of announcing that the harvest was past, and that they who had already entered the kingdom completed the number of those predestined to enter. The Unitarians were enjoined on no account, therefore, to try to make any more proselytes from any sect, nor to reveal their doctrines to any one not born from among them, but to hold fast the faith in secret, and wait for the coming of Hakem and Hanze from the gates of the East, which they accordingly do to this day.
Their warlike aristocracy, however, have betrayed as much relish for rule and power in this world, as most other people. While Druze and Maronite lived in peace together, the Druzes generally furnishing the ruling spirits of the mountain, Lebanon was able to maintain a large measure of independence. But unfortunately in the rivalries of the various feudal families there was a potent influence for evil which could be wielded against the mountain by the Moslem government, and for genertions the sole business of Tarkish Pachas has been to stir up one chief or family against another, by bestowing upon them alternately the robe of governorship, from Constantinople. When any one chief like the Emeers Fukhr ed deen Màan, or Beshir Shehaab, by his courage and conduct, was enabled to present the mountaineers united against the Osmanli, the Turk quietly acquiesced, bided his time, and then, at an unlooked-for juncture, the Emeer found his cousin, or brother, or his own son, in a new robe of honor from the sublime Sultan, and in arms against himself.
“ The Turkish government can on a lame donkey catch a gazelle,” is the bitter, but expressive Druze proverb. Now, alas ! the events of the few past months have been a fearful commentary on this old saying. We have no doubt whatever, that when the causes of the terrible destruction that has lately reddened the fair hights of Lebanon VOL. XIX.
with blood, stand forth revealed, it will be found to have originated first, neither in Druze khulwy, nor in Maronite convent, but in the conclaves of Pachas and Ulemas in Constantinople and Damascus.
We have had many personal friends, among both Druzes and Christians, and too many of them have come to a dreadful end in this lamentable strife, the preparations to bring about which, on the part of the Turkish government, have been evident for years. And when we reflect what an Eastern civil war is, what depths of horror there were in one single massacre like that at Hasbeiya, we cannot but ask, O Lord, how long?
ARTICLE III.-SOLAR PHENOMENA.
In the binary and multiple systems among the so-called fixed stars, two or more self-luminous bodies revolve round a common center of gravity, destitute of matter. The solar system, however, is very differently constituted : at least six hundred and ninety-nine seven hundredths of its entire mass being found in one central orb, whose atmosphere alone, in all probability, contains more matter than all the planets hitherto discovered.
The spots generally found upon the sun's surface have been often described. It was from observations of these phenomena that the sun's revolution on his axis, which had previously been regarded as highly probable, was first demonstrated. The remarkable but well known fact that the determinations of the period of rotation by different observers are somewhat discordant, is doubtless owing to a sensible motion of the spots, inter se. Langier makes the time of revolution 25d. Sh. 9m., and the inclination of the axis seven degrees and nine minutes.
The detection of spots on the sun's surface was one of the earliest achievements of the telescope; but the question as to priority in the discovery has been much disputed. If the honor is due to him who first recognized them as solar phenomena, it belongs undoubtedly to John Fabricius, whose observations were made, according to Arago, in March, 1611.* “ Concerning Galileo,” says Humboldt, “we possess only Fery obscure and discrepant data on this subject. It is probable that he recognized the solar spots in April, 1611, for he showed them publicly at Rome, in Cardinal Bandini's garden, on the Quirinal, in the months of April and May of that year.”+
The opinions entertained by writers of the seventeenth
Annuaire for 1842.
+ Cosmos, Vol. II, p. 707, (Bohn's Edition.)
century, in regard to the nature of these spots, were extremely various. Some of the first observers supposed them to be small planetary bodies transiting the solar disk. Others, regarding the sun as a molten mass, thought the spots were either scoria floating on the surface, or portions of solid, opaque matter, projecting above the level of the igneous fluid. According to the theory advocated by Sir W. Herschel, the body of the sun is a dark, or comparatively dark, globe, surrounded by two strata of cloud, and the maculæ are nothing more than this dark body of the sun seen through temporary openings in these atmospheric envelopes. In other words, Herschel accounts for the penumbræ, as well as the black nuclei, by supposing “luminous strata of the atmosphere to be sustained far above the level of the solid body, by a transparent elastic medium, carrying on its upper surface (or rather at some considerably lower level within its depth) a cloudy stratum, which, being strongly illuminated from above, reflects a considerable portion of the light to our eyes, and forms a penumbra, while the solid body, shaded by clouds, reflects none. The temporary removal of both the strata, but more of the upper than the lower, he supposes effected by powerful upward currents of the atmosphere, perhaps from spiracles in the body, or from local agitations."*
Another interesting phenomenon frequently witnessed on the sun's disk, is the appearance of spots of unusual brightness, called faculæ. They are generally found in the vicinity of maculæ, and not unfrequently seem to be the precursors of their formation. They are supposed to be waves or accumulations of the gaseous photosphere, and are undoubtedly indicative of great atmospheric commotions.
The solar spots, like our trade winds and hurricanes, are generally confined to the equatorial regions ; being rarely found within three degrees of the equator, or in higher latitudes than thirty or thirty-five degrees : a fact which seems indicative of a causal connection with the sun's rotation. They have no fixed localities, but enjoy proper motions, inter se, on the surface.
• Herschel's Outlines.