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in the possession of Turkey and Rus-
sia several times between 1474 and
1878. The inhabitants are chiefly
Walladrians, Gipsies, and Tartars.

Bessarion, John, a Greek scholar,
born in Trebizond in 1395, one of the
most eminent restorers of learning in



chemistry, to the study of the laws i the 15th century, and founder of the



Bessel

library of St. Mark at Venice ; was a
monk of the Order of St. Basil. He
died in Ravenna, Nov. 19, 1472.

Bessel, Friedrich Wilhelm, as-
tronomer, born in Minden, Prussia,
July 22, 1784. He died in Konigs-
berg, March 17, 1846.

Bessels, Emil, a German natural-
ist, born in Heidelberg, June 2, 1847 ;
died in Stuttgart, March 30, 1888.

Bessemer, Sir Henry, an Eng-
lish inventor, born in Charlton, Hert-
fordshire, Jan. 19, 1813 ; began mod-
eling and designing patterns when 18
years old ; chose engineering as a pro-
fession, and, after long and costly ex-
periments, announced, in 1856, his
discovery of a means of rapidly and
cheaply converting pig iron into steel,
by blowing a blast of air through the
iron when in a state of fusion. For
this discovery the Institution of Civil
Engineers awarded him the Gold Tel-
ford Medal, and several foreign gov-
ernments honored him with valuable
tokens. In the United States appre-
ciation of his great discovery took the
form of creating industrial cities and
towns under his name. He was elect-
ed President of the Iron and Steel In-
stitute of Great Britain in 1871;
knighted by the Queen in 1879, and
received the freedom of the city of
London in 1880. He died in London,
March 15, 1898.

Bessemer Steel, steel made from
pig iron, from which practically all
the carbon, etc., has been removed by
exposing the molten mass to a current
of air.

Bessey, Charles E., an American
botanist, born in Wilton, O., May
21, 1845; educated at Harvard Uni-
versity ; Professor of Botany in the
Iowa Agricultural College in 1870-
1884 ; Professor of Botany in the Uni-
versity of Nebraska since 188^. He
was also President of the Society for
the Promotion of Agricultural Science
in 1883-1885; President of the Ne-
braska Academy of Sciences in 1891 ;
acting Chancellor of the University of
Nebraska in 1888^1891 ; Fellow of the
American Association for the Ad-
vancement of Science. Died in 1915.

Bessieres, Jean Baptiste, Duke
of Istria, a marshal of the French
Empire, born of poor parents at Preis-
sac, Aug 6, 1768. At the accession



Bethania

of Napoleon (1804) to the throne, be
became Marshal of France. He showed
his usual conspicuous courage at Aus-
terlitz, Jena, Eylau, and Friedland,
and, raised to the rank of Duke of Is-
tria, commanded in Spain in 1808
1809. In the Russian campaign he led
the cavalry of the Guard, and did
much by his sleepless courage and
presence of mind to save the wreck of
the army in the disastrous retreat
from Moscow. On the morning of the
battle of Lutzen (May 1, 1813), he
fell mortally wounded by a cannon
ball.

Bestiary, the name given to a class
of written books of great popularity
in the Middle Ages, describing all the
animals of creation, real or fabled,
composed partly in prose, partly in
verse, and generally illustrated by
drawings.

Betanzos, Juan Jose de, a Span-
ish historian and adventurer of the
16th century ; was author of an ac-
count of the conquest of Peru by Pi-
zarro.

Betel, or Betle, the English name
of the piper betle, a shrubby plant
with evergreen leaves, belonging to the
typical genus of the pepperworts. It
is extensively cultivated in the East
Indies. Its leaf is used as a wrapper
to inclose a few slices of the areca
palm nut with a little shell lime. The
Southern Asiatics are perpetually
chewing it to sweeten the breath, to
strengthen the stomach, and, if hun-
ger be present, to deaden its cravings.

Betham-Edwards, Matilda, an
English author, born in Suffolk, in
1836 , was educated privately ; has
published numerous works in poetry,
fiction, and on French rural life. She
was made an officer of public instruc-
tion in France in 1891.

Bethania, or Bethany, a town
in Syria, about 2 miles S. E. of Jeru-
salem, on the way to Jericho. It is
now a small place, inhabited by a few
Turkish families, by whom it is called
Lazari, in memory of Lazarus, who
dwelt here, and who was here raised
from the dead. The inhabitants show
the pretended, sites of the houses of
Lazarus, of Martha, of Simon the
leper, and of Mary Magdalene. The
alleged tomb of Lazarus, a large ex-
cavation in the rock, is also shown.



Bethany College



The situation of Betbania is extreme-
ly picturesque.

Bethany College, a co-education-
al institution in Linsborg, Kan. ; or-
ganized in 1881 : under the auspices of
the Lutheran Church.

Bethany College, a co-education-
al institution in Bethany, W. Va. ; or-
ganized in 1841 ; under the auspices
of the Church of the Disciples.

Bethel, a town of Palestine, about
10 miles from Jerusalem, now called
Beitin, or Beiteen. The patriarch
Jacob here had a vision of angels, in
commemoration of which he built an
altar. Interesting ruins abound in the
vicinity.

Bethel College, an educational in-
stitution in Russellville, Ky. ; organ-
ized in 1854 ; under the auspices of the
Baptist Church.

Bethesda, a pool in Jerusalem,
near St. Stephen's Gate, and the Tem-
ple of Omar.

Bethlehem, the birthplace of Je-
sus Christ and of King David, and
the Ephratah of the history of Jacob ; '
is now a small, unwalled village of
white stone houses, in the midst of a
most interesting country, 6 miles S.
of Jerusalem. The population, about
3,000, is wholly Christian Latin,
Greek, and Armenian. The Convent i
of the Nativity, a large, square build- '
ing, resembling a fortress, was built
by the Empress Helena, in 327 A. D.,
but destroyed by the Moslems in 1236, j
and, it is supposed, restored by the
crusaders. Within it is the Church ;
of the Nativity, which is subdivided
among the Latins, Greeks, and Ar- j
rnenians, for devotional purposes. The
Bethlehemites chiefly gain their sub-
sistence by the manufacture and sale
of crucifixes, beads, boxes, shells, etc.,
of mother-of-pearl and olive wood.

Bethlehem, a borough in North-
ampton and Lehigh counties, Pa.; on I
the Lehigh river and canal and sev-i
eral railroads; 57 miles N. of Phila-|
delphia; since 1904 includes the for-
mer borough of West Bethlehem;
contains a Moravian theological
seminary and other educational in-
stitutions, and has silk mills, rolling
mills, machine shops, and brass and
spelter works. It was founded in
1741 by Moravians under Count Zin-
zendorf. Pop. (1910) 12,837.



Beveridge



Bethsaida, a village on the W.
shore of the Lake of Galilee, the birth-
place of Peter and Andrew and Philip.

Bethnne, a town of N. France, 24
miles N. N. W. of Arras ; in the
midst of the richest coal mines in
France ; has large industrial inter-
ests ; was once strongly fortified ;
ceded to France by the Peace of Nijm-
wegen in 1678 ; occupied by the allied
forces in 1710; restored to France by
the Treaty of Utrecht ; pop. about 15,-
000. Bethune was in the sphere of
the great Arras campaign. See AP-
PENDIX: World War.

Betterton, Thomas, English act-
tor, born in 1635 ; excelled in Shake-
speare's characters of Hamlet, Othello,
Brutus, and Hotspur, and was the
means of introducing shifting scenes
instead of tapestry upon the English
stage. He died in 1710, and was
buried in Westminster Abbey.

Betting, or Wagering, a con-
tract by which two or more parties
agree that a certain sum of money or
other thing shall be paid or delivered
to one of them on the happening or
not happening of an uncertain event.
At common law, wagers are not per
se, void, but statutes prohibiting bet-
ting have been passed by many of the
States.

Betts, Craven Langstrath, an
American poet and story writer, born
in New Brunswick, in 1853.

Betty, William Henry West,
better known as the YOUNG Roscius,
an English actor, born at Shrewsbury
in 1791 ; died in London, Aug. 24,
1874.

Beust, Friedrich Ferdinand,
Count von, an Austrian statesman,
born in Dresden, Jan. 13, 1809. He
entered the service of Austria as Min-
ister of Foreign Affairs, became Presi-
dent of the Ministry, Imperial Chan-
cellor, and, in 18G8, was created
Count. In 1871-1878 he was Ambas-
sador in London, in 1878-1882, in
Paris. He died near Vienna, Oct. 24,
1886.

Beveridge, Albert Jeremiah, an
American lawyer, born in Highland
county, O., Oct. 6, 18G2; was brought
up on a farm ; graduated at De Pauw
University ; and engaged in law prac-
tice in Indianapolis. He entered po-
litical life in 1883, and soon won a



Beverly

reputation as an effective orate t. He
served as U. S. Senator for Indiana
during 1899-1911.

Beverly, a city and popular sum-
mer-resort in Essex county, Mass.;



Biberach

beautiful and perhaps the only true
philosophical poem in the whole range
of known literature. Its teaching is
pantheistic. It consists of 18 lec-
tures. It has been translated into



on the North Shore and the Boston many languages.

& Maine railroad; 18 miles N. E. ofi Bhamo, a town of Burma on the
Boston; is the seat of the New Eng- Upper Irrawaddy, about 40 miles from
land Industrial School for Deaf j the Chinese frontier. It is the start-
Mutes; and under President Taft ing-point of caravans to Yunnan.



was the " summer capital " of the
United States. Pop. (1910) 18,650.

Bewick, Thomas, an English
wood engraver, born in Northumber-
land in 1753. He died in 1828.

Beyle, Marie-Henri, better known
under the pseudonym of " Stendhal,"
a French novelist and critic, born in
Grenoble, Jan. 23, 1783 ; died in Paris,
March 23, 1842.

Beyrout, or Beirut, a flourishing
commercial town, situated in a most
picturesque position on the coast of
Syria, and at the foot of Lebanon, 55
miles from Damascus, and 147 from
Jerusalem. It is the chief seaport,
market-town, and emporium of all the
trade with the shores of Syria, Pales-
tine, and Cilicia, with a regular ser-
vice of Egyptian, French, and British
steamers. The American vice-consul
at this place was shot at during a riot
in September, 1903, and warships were
sent there. Pop. about 150,000.

Bezants, or Byzantines, coins of
the old Byzantine empire.

Beza, or Beze, Theodore de, a
French Protestant theologian and re-
former, born in Vezelai, in 1519.
In 1558, he was sent to ask
the intercession of several German
princes in behalf of the persecuted
Huguenots in France. The next year
he settled at Geneva, and was thence-
forth the associate of Calvin till his
death, and his successor as Professor
of Theology and head of the Protes-
tant party. His energy and activity
of mind, like his bodily health, con-
tinued unabated till he was nearly 80
years of age, and he only ceased
preaching in 1GOO. He died in 1G05.

Beziqne, or Besiqne, a game of
cards of French origin.

Bhagavatgita, or Bhagavadgi-
ta, in Sanskrit literature, a song re-
lating a discourse between Krishna
and his pupil Arjun in the midst of a
battle. Schlegel considers it the most



Bheels, or Bhils, a Dravidic race
inhabiting the Vindhya, Satpura, and
Satmala Hills, a relic of the Indian
aborigines driven from the plains by
the Aryan Rajputs. Their total num-
bers are about 750,000.

Bhutan, an independent State in
the Eastern Himalayas ; area about
20,000 square miles ; pop. est. 250,-
000. The Bhutanese are a back-
ward race, governed by a Dharm
Rajah, regarded as an incarnation of
deity, and by a Deb Rajah, with a
council of eight. They are nominally
Buddhists.

Biafra, Bight of, a large bay on
the W. coast of Africa, at the head of
the Gulf of Guinea, between Capes
Formosa and Lopez.

Bianchini, Francesco, an Ital-
ian astronomer, born in Verona, in
16G2. He died in 1729.

Biard, Auguste Francois, a
French genre painter, born in 1798 :
died in 1882.

Biarritz, a watering-place and
noted winter resort in France ; on the
Bay of Biscay in the Department of
the Basses-Pyrenees ; 4 miles S. W. of
Bayonne. It was the royal summer
residence during the Second Empire.

Biart, Lucien, a French novelist,
poet and writer of travels, born in
yersailles, June 21, 1829. He pub-
lished a number of novels, containing
masterly descriptions of Mexican and
South American nature and customs.

Bias, one of the seven sages of
Greece ; a native of Priene, in Ionia ;
celebrated for his practical knowledge
and strict regard to justice. He flour-
ished about 550 B. c., and died at a
very advanced age.

Biberach, a town of Wurtemberg,
delightfully situated on the Reiss, 23
miles S. S. W. of Ulm. It retains its
old ramparts and towers, and in front
of the theater is a monument to Wie-



Bible



Bible



land, who was born in the neighbor-
'hood.

Bible (French bible, with similar
forms in other languages, from Greek
biblia, books, from biblos, the inner
bark of the papyrus, used for writing
on, hence a book) , the collection of
Sacred Writings or Holy Scriptures
of the Christians. The older and ^
larger division of these writings is j
also received by the Jews as embody- j
ing their faith, and is called the Old j
Testament, or Scriptures of the Old
Covenant, because the Jewish religion
was represented as a compact or cove-
nant between God and the Jews, and
the Greek word for covenant signifies
also last will or testament The same
figure was applied to the Christian re-
ligion, which ws considered as an ex-
tension of the old covenant, or a cove-
nant between God and the whole hu-
man race. The sacred writings
peculiar to the Christians are, there- ,
fore, called the Scriptures of the New j
Covenant, or the New Testament.
Protestants and Roman Catholics do
not altogether agree as to the books
that ought to be admitted into the
canon or list of writings belonging to
the Old Testament A certain num-
ber of books classed by the former
under the head of Apocrypha are
called by the latter " deutero-canoni-
cal," as being admitted into the canon
at a later date than the rest, but are
held to be of equal authority.

The scriptures were, no doubt, orig-
inally written on skins or parchments
rolled up into rolls or volumes.

The earliest and most famous ver-
sion of the Old Testament is the Sep-
tuagint, or Greek translation, complet-
ed it is believed in the 2d century B. o.
The Syriac version, called the Peshito,
was made in the 2d century after
Christ, and is celebrated for its fideli-
ty. The famous Latin version of St.
Jerome, known as the Vulgate, was
finished in 405.

The New Testament, besides being
originally written in Greek, also dif-
fers remarkably from the Old in this
respect, that while the writings com-
prehended in the earlier collection
range over a period of 1,000 years,
those included in the latter were pro-
duced almost contemporaneously



most of them probably between A. D.
50 and A. D. 70. The collection con-
sists of 27 writings, ascribed either to
apostles or to persons intimately asso-
ciated with them. Five of the works
are in the form of historical narra-
tives, four of which relate from dif-
ferent points of view the story of
Christ's life, while the fifth describes
the formation and extension of the
Church by the ministry of the leading
apostles. Twenty-one are epistolary.
Thirteen of these bear the name of St.
Paul as their author, nine being ad-
dressed to various Christian communi-
ties, three (I and II Timothy, and
Titus) called the pastoral epistles
to office-bearers in the Churcn,
and - one to a private individual
(Philemon). The epistle to the
Hebrews formerly ascribed to Paul is
believed to have been written by Apol-
los. Seven other letters one ascribed
to James, two to Peter, three to
John, and one to Jude are often
known as the catholic (that is, gen-
eral) epistles, as haying been intended
for the use of Christians in general.
The only remaining work is the Apoc-
alypse or Revelation of St. John. Of
these writings the epistles are the ear-
liest in date and were written to va-
rious Christian communities to give
advice in special circumstances, to ex-
plain points of doctrine, or to warn
against mistaken beliefs. They are
adapted to the special conditions and
mental attitude of those to whom they
were addressed ; thus in the letters to
the Corinthian Christians, who dwelt
in Greece, various speculative ques-
tions are discussed. The first three
Gospels, called the synoptic Gospels,
were probably written in or near A. D.
70, that of Mark being perhaps the
earliest. The fourth Gospel is of
much later date (about A. D.
100), and has a markedly different
character. It gives an account of
Christ's life not so much from an ob-
jective and historical as from a sub-
jective and personal point of view.

All the books of the New Testament
have come down to us as originally
written in the Greek language. The
writers of the New Testament
were all, or nearly all, Jews ; and
while employing the Greek language,



BiLlc Societies



Bible Societies



they exhibit many traces of their na-
tive idiom, so that their writings pre-
sent more or less of a Hebraic color-
ing. The body, as has been well said,
is Greek ; the spirit is Hebrew. The
first translation of the whole Bible into
English was by Wycliffe and his co-
adjutors, who translated from the Lat-
in and published their work in 1382.
William Tyndale made a translation
from the original tongues of the New
Testament and part of the Old, which
he printed at Worms in 1525. It was
proscribed and burned in England,
but copies were smuggled over and
used in secret. The Pentateuch was
published by Tyndale in 1530. He also
translated some of the prophetical
books. His translation was superior
to all previous versions in purity,
perspicuity, and accuracy, and it
formed the basis of all subsequent
translations.

Tyndale suffered martyrdom in 1536,
but his work was taken up by Miles
Coverdale. He and his coadjutors com-
pleted the translation and the whole
Bible was issued in one large volume.
In 1537 a new and revised edition was
published. Another version appeared
in 1560 known as the Genevan Bible,
or more familiarly as the Breeches
Bible, from its rendering of Genesis 3 :
7. This, however, was not popular
with the Church of England, and in
1568 a revision of Coverdale's version
was made. This was known as the Bish-
op's Bible, because of the number of
bishops who assisted in its production.

In the reign of James I. a demand
was made for a new translation,
and at the Hampton Court Confer-
ence (1604) the suggestion was made
by Dr. Rainolds of Oxford, as spokes-
man of the Puritan representatives,
and acepted by the king. The work
was committed to 54 scholars, but
only 47 took part in it They were
divided into six companies, who had
their respective tasks assigned them
and met apart. The revision was be-
gun in 1607, and occupied three years.
The whole work was revised by 12 of
the translators, two out of each com-
pany, and a final revision was made
by Dr. Myles Smith, the writer of
the preface, and Dr. Bilson, Bishop of
Winchester. The completed work was
published in a folio volume in 1611.

E 18.



The translators were enjoined to fol-
Iqw the ordinary Bible read in the
churches commonly called the Bish-
ops' Bible, and not to make altera-
tions unless the meaning of the origi-
nal could be more accurately con-
veyed. The general accuracy of this
translation, which is usually known
as the Authorized Version, and the
purity of its style, so won the appro-
bation of scholars and commended it
to readers generally that from the
time of its adoption it has superseded
all other versions. Latterly, however,
the advances made in Hebrew scholar-
ship and biblical criticism gave rise to
a general demand among those inter-
ested in the study of the Bible for a
revision of the Authorized Version,
and the task was undertaken by a
number of the Anglican clergy, with
the aid of associates from various
other bodies. The work was set afoot
by the convocation of Canterbury,
which in 1870 appointed a committee
to consider the question of revision.
The committee in a few months re-
ported favorably on the scheme, rec-
ommending that " the revision be so
conducted as to comprise both margi-
nal renderings and such emendations
as it may be found necessary to insert
in the text of the authorized version ";
stating also " that in the above reso-
lutions we do not contemplate any
new translation of the Bible, or any
alteration of the language, except
where in the judgment of the most
competent scholars such change is
necessary." Two companies were soon
formed one for the Old, the other
for the New Testament, including a
number of scholars belonging to the
United States and the revised ver-
sion of the New Testament was issued
in 1881, while that of the Old Testa-
ment appeared in 1885. In accuracy
at least the revised version is greatly
superior to the old, on which it made
10,000 emendations. Of other trans-
lations than the English Authorized
Version, that of Luther, which formed
an epoch in the history of the German
language, is the most remarkable. It
was finished in 1534.

Bible Societies, societies formed
for the distribution of the Bible or
portions of it in various languages,
either gratuitously or at a low rate.
A clergyman of Wales, whom the



Bible Statistics



Bible



want of a Welsh Bible led to London,
occasioned the establishment of the
British and Foreign Bible Society,
which was founded in London, March
7, 1804.

In the United States the great
American Bible Society, formed in
181(3, acts in concert with the aux-
iliary societies in all parts of the
Union. The annual income of the
society is now over $500,000, and its
total issue has amounted to about
04,000,000 copies. These have been
mostly in English, Spanish, and
French, from the society's plates. The
managers have occasionally purchased
Bibles in Europe, and issued them to
applicants, in German, Dutch, Welsh,
Gaelic, Portuguese, modern Greek,
and some other European languages.
They have also furnished money to
print translations into pagan lan-
guages, by American missionaries. It
is the object of the society to supply
every one who can read in the United
States, before devoting much attention
to distribution abroad. Yet Spanish
America and Ceylon, Greece, and the
Sandwich Islands have been furnished
with Bibles by the society. Other
American societies are the Pennsyl-
vania Bible Society, the American and
Foreign Bible Society, and the Amer-
ican Bible Lnion.

Bible Statistics, an interesting
compilation, said to be the fruits of
three years' labor by the indefatigable
Dr. Horne, and given by him in his
introduction to the study of the Scrip-
tures. The basis is an old English Bi-
ble of the King James version.

Old Testament Number of books,
39; chapters, 929; verses, 23,214;
words, 593,493; letters, 2,728,100.

New Testament. Number of books,
27; chapters, 260; verses, 7,959;
words, 181,253; letters, 838,380.

The Bible. Total number of books,
66; chapters, 1,189; verses, 31,173;
words, 773,746; letters, 3,566,480.

Apocrypha. Number of books, 1-| ;
chapters, 184 ; verses, 6,031 ; words,
125,185.

Old Testament The middle book
of the Old Testament is Proverbs. The
middle chapter is Job xxix. The mid-
dle verse is II Chronicles xx, between
verses 17 and 18. The shortest book
is Obadiah. The shortest verse is
I Chron. i: 25. The word "and"



occurs 35,543 times. Ezra vii : 21
contains all the letters of our alpha-
bet. The word " Selah " occurs 73
times and only in the poetical books.
II Kings xix and Isaiah xxxvii are
alike. The Book of Esther does not
contain the words God or Lord. The
last two verses of II Chronicles and
the opening verses of the Book ot
Ezra are alike. Ezra ii and Nehe-
miah vii are alike. There are nearly
30 books mentioned, but not found in
the Bible, consisting of civil records
and other ancient writings now nearly
all lost. About 26 of these are al-
luded to in the Old Testament

New Testament The middle book
is II Thessalonians. The middle chap-
ter is between Romans xiii and xiv.
The middle verse is Acts xvii : 17.
The smallest book is II John. The
smallest verse is John xi : 35. The
word " and " occurs 10,684 times. The
name Jesus occurs nearly 700 times in
the Gospels and Acts, and in the Epis-
tles less than 70 times. The name
Christ alone occurs about 60 times in

! the Gospels and Acts, and about 240
times in the Epistles and Revelation.



Online LibraryGeorge Jotham HagarThe New world encyclopedia; a library of reference (Volume 1) → online text (page 45 of 91)