Volltext: Memories of my Life

When I took the chair the next day, the zeal of 
Mr. W. was conspicuous in the diagrams he had 
hung round the walls like a frieze. Each diagram 
contained a representation of one of the 35 or so 
characters. Below it was its Hebrew equivalent, and 
below all was a free translation, in which I noted 
there were more words than there were letters in the 
original, and my misgivings grew. The paper proved 
to be long and tedious, as papers on antiquarian sub¬ 
jects often are, and the audience melted away. At 
length the reporters could stand it no longer, and 
most fortunately left also. The audience was then 
reduced to a mere handful of persons, and when the 
paper was finished Mr. C. rose, who was a recognised 
authority on Greek manuscripts, and said that he 
had no pretensions in respect to a knowledge of 
Phenician, but as a mere question of resemblance it 
struck him that the characters (which he pointed out) 
seemed to him less like the alleged Hebrew equiva¬ 
lents than to the letters forming the Greek word 
ALEXANDROS. There was no doubt he was 
right, and the small audience tittered. In the mean¬ 
time the Secretary, a well-known antiquarian, became 
more and more excited, and jumped up as soon as Mr. 
C. had sat down, and exclaimed, “ Phenician ! ” (Con¬ 
temptuous grunt.) “Greek ! ” (Another different and 
equally contemptuous grunt.) "Can you not read 
‘ HIC JACET ’ ? ” and I must say his reading seemed 
to me the least forced of the three. I think all of us 
felt utterly ashamed. Had the reporters been present, 
the fun that could have been made by the newspapers 
out of the incident would have been a disaster to the 
credit of the Association. The Reports of that 


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