The Library of History

Page 205

Page 205 of Cyprus Trees. They were in number, Six Men and Five Women, the Issue of Ʋranus and Terra, as some affirm; but as others say, the Offspring of one of the Curetes and Titaea, and call'd Titans after the Name of their Mother. The Sons were call'd Cronus, Hyperion, Coeus, Japetus, Crius and Oceanus; the Sisters were Rhea, Themis, Mnemosyne, Phaebe and Thetis; every one of whom were the Inventers of something useful and profitable to Man's well-being, and as a Reward of their Deserts, are by all Men honour'd with an everlasting Remembrance.

Saturn the Eldest, obtained the Kingdom, and reduc'd his Subjects from a wild and barbarous, to a more civil Course of Life, both as to Food and Manners. Having therefore upon that account gain'd much Honour and Reputation, he went into many Parts of the World, and perswaded all wherever he came, to Justice and Integrity of Heart; and therefore it's brought down as a certain Truth to Posterity, that in the times of Saturn, Men were plain and honest, free from all sorts of wicked Designs or Practices; yea, that they were then happy and blessed. He chiefly reign'd over the Western Parts of the World, and was advanc'd to the highest Pinacle of Honour and Renown; and therefore of later Times, both the Romans and Carthaginians (while their City stood) and other Neighbouring Nations, ador'd this God with magnificent and splendid Festivals and Sacrifices; and many Places up and down are call'd after his Name: And because at that time the Laws were strictly observ'd, no act of Injustice was committed, but all submitting to his Authority, liv'd happily, and injoy'd Pleasure and Content without any Molestation; which is attested by the Poet Hesiod, in these Verses.

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Whilst Saturn reign'd, those then his Subjects were,
Who liv'd the lives of Gods without all care;
Who Sorrow, Labour, nor Old Age opprest,
But soundness both in Hands and Feet them blest;
With joyful Vigour to their Feasts they went,
Free from all Ills, their Deaths did represent
Sound Sleep; to them flow'd down what e're was good,
And without Toyl, the Earth did yield them Food,
And from her Fruitful Womb did them afford
Her Fruits most freely of her own accord.
Rich in their Flocks, and to the Gods most dear,
During this Reign, these happy People were.

And these are the things they reported of Saturn.

As to Hyperion, they say, that he was the first that by his own Industry found out the Motions of the Sun and Moon, and other Stars, and the Seasons and Distinctions of Time measur'd out by them, and afterwards imparted his Knowledge to others. And therefore he was call'd the Father of those Planets, as he that first taught the Knowledge and nature of them.

Latona, they say, was the Daughter of Coeus and Phebe; and that Prometheus was the Son of Japetus, who (as some feign) stole Fire from the Gods, and bestow'd it upon Men.

Bibliotheca Historica

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