The Botany of Three Historical Records, Pharaoh's Dream, The Sower, and the King's Measure

    Abstract

    THIS is a curious little book, the author's aim being to throw what light he can, either by comparison or suggestion, upon the probability of the plants referred to in these Scripture records being this or that species of cereal. Mr. Wilson seems to have given a good deal of consideration to each of the above questions, which, as he says in his preface, have only one bond of connection between them, namely, “a common basis in the botany of the cereal grasses.” Notwithstanding the pains the author has evidently given to each of the subjects, we cannot but think that it will prove of but little value, the points advanced being by no means conclusive, and even the subjects in themselves being of small importance. It may be of some value to know whether the cereals “stand in the same alimentary relationship to mankind as they did when Joseph laid up the surplus of the plenteous years in the granaries of Egypt,” because such a knowledge, if it could be proved, would show the progress made in developing the productive resources of these grasses, but whether the plant in Pharaoh's dream was Triticum conipositiun, or any other species of Triticum, is perhaps of little moment to mankind at the present time. As an illustraiton of what is to our mind mere speculation, we quote the following from p. 6:—“The wheats of ‘Minnith,’ in the Belka (Ezek. xxvii.) grown by the farmers of Judah and Israel, seem to have been in demand in the corn-market of Tyre. Probably Minnith was a remarkably good locality for wheat, so that when the husbandman in other districts got seed from this place they called it Minnith wheat.”

    The Botany of Three Historical Records, Pharaoh's Dream, The Sower, and the King's Measure.

    By A. Stephen Wilson. (Edinburgh: David Douglas, 1878.)

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    The Botany of Three Historical Records, Pharaoh's Dream, The Sower, and the King's Measure . Nature 19, 3 (1878). https://doi.org/10.1038/019003b0

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