Dissertation 7.


Chapter 8:3

The clearest modern exposition with which the Editor is acquainted is that of Birks, and it will be sufficient for our purpose to make a few extracts from his work. "The ram is expounded by the angel to be the kings of Media and Persia." It is clear, then, that the word kings is not used in a personal sense. It is plain they are the two ruling dynasties or powers, confederate in conquest, and of which Media was superior at first, and Persia after the sole reign of Cyrus. The ram itself, and not the two horns, denotes the compound Median and Persian power. The ram was seen "pushing westward, and northward, and southward." These words are a very clear prediction of the conquests of Cyrus, though, perhaps, they may include the later conquests of Egypt by his son Cambyses. "The vision was in the sixth or seventh year of Cyrus, when his career of victory had already begun," (p. 10.) Two objections to this explanation are then answered; one is, that the chronology seems to require a later commencement, and the other, that the place of the ram before the river, has been thought to imply the previous establishment of the Persian empire. The most natural sense of the words "before the river," is, "with its face to the river." The accomplishment of this prophecy is then traced through Herodotus, and Xenophon. The narratives of Herod. Book 1:71-95, respecting the overthrow of Croesus, and 152-216, respecting his victories in Upper Asia, clearly support this view of the fulfillment.

The he-goat is so clearly fulfilled in Alexander, that, no further remark seems required. Birks has translated at length the passages in Diodorus, and given a correct summary of the chronology of this period. See also Alexander in Plutarch, chapter 24, Diod. Sic., lib. 17, section 46, and Quint. Curtius, lib. 4, section. 4, 19.


The classical passages from which correct information is obtained respecting the kingdom of Macedon, Syria, and Egypt, as far as they illustrate Daniel's prophecies, are as follow: --

Quintus Curtius, fol. Col. Agripp., 1628, page 670 and following. This is the edition of Raderus under the title of Q. Curtii Rufi de Alexandro M. historiam Mathaei Raderi S. J. Commentarii.

Diodori Siculi, lib. 18, page 587. Wesseling, Amst., 1746, volume 2, page 258.

Polybius, 126, cap. 10, volume 4, page 353 and following. Schweigheuser's edition.

Atheneous, Deipnosophist, lib. 5, cap. 5, and lib. 10, cap. 10.

Photius, cod. 82, and cod. 92 in epit., lib. 9.

Justin, lib. 13.

Crosius, Hist., lib. 3, chapter 23.

Dexippus and Artrian in fragments preserved by Photius.

Biblioth., cod. 82, and cod. 92.

Andrew Schott, in his edition of flee Bibliotheca of Photius, has given a tabular view of the various divisions of Alexander's kingdom, classifying them according to the authority of each of the above-mentioned authors. See fol. Gen., 1612, page 230.

Venema, in his dissertations on the emblematical prophecies of Daniel, gives a full statement of every event, with a separate classical authority for each. His object was to shew that Alexander's kingdom was divided into ten after his death, and that the portion of this prophecy interpreted by Calvin of the Roman empire was really fulfilled by the Greeks. Dr. Todd has quoted the original Latin, (p. 504 and following,) from Dissertation. 5, section. 3 to 12, pages 347 to 364. 4to. Leovard, 1745.