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Literature a Pillar of Strength
150               CHURCH REVIEW.

tion of greatness." Follow the trend of civilization
along that narrow strip of land on the east of the
Mediterranean Sea--Phoenecia--whose rich production
from the soil may be considered as truly the basis of
her greatness, and you will still see a recognition of
literary taste. Though her literature in its original
form has almost perished, leaving but a few traces and
fragments in Greek translations, it still remains to her
credit that her literature was regarded as of high im-
portance and vast extent. Her authors were regarded
as the gods themselves, and the expressions of her
Kadmus, Ophion and Esmun were always hailed with
joy. Then came their sacred literature and poetry,
that infused itself into the life of the entire people.
  Though the Phcenecians seemed absorbed in mercan-
tile pursuits, in some way,from some source, they learned
the profitableness of peace; they attacked no one, what-
ever they desired they sought to obtain it by fair ex-
change. In the absence of proof as to any other source,
one writer dares the assertion that they were prompted
to it by the writing of one of their poets, who wrote on
the strain that " all men are one blood and should there-
fore count each other as entitled to equal privileges."
So long as they followed this teaching they prospered.
When they ceased to refresh their minds on this line,
when they forsook these teachings, they fell.
  Persian history would not be complete without a
chapter giving credit to the spirit of literary enterprise
that characterized their life and rendered native in-
fluence paramount among them. While the bulk of the
Arabs are in their religious feeling Mohammedans, they
admit that it was out of the body of the Persians exclu-
sively that sprang the foremost, if not all their scholars,
the poets, the historians and philosophers.  They revo-
lutionized thought, revived national feeling, which
burst forth in prose and verse from the lips of thousands


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African Methodist Episcopal Church Review, Vol. 10, Num. 1

Literature a Pillar of Strength


Volume:  10
Issue Number:  01
Page Number:  146
Date:  07/1893


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