Imatges de pÓgina
PDF
EPUB

Elster, on a high mountain, contains 7000 inhabitants, manufactories of cloth, leather, &c. The town is very old, has four churches, and a gymnasium, a house of correction, an institution for the reformation of juvenile offenders, a good library with 12,000 volumes and many manuscripts. The former bishopric of Zeitz was founded by the emperor Otho I, in 968, in order to promote the conversion of the Wends (q. v.) to Christianity. In 1029, the bishops transferred their see to Naumburg.

ZELLE, or CELLE; a city of Hanover, in Luneburg, 128 miles west of Berlin; lon. 10° 14 E.; lat. 53° 42′ N.; population, including the suburbs, 9729. It contains five churches, two hospitals, a gymnasium, an orphan-house, a lunatic hospital, a school of surgery, a society of agriculture, &c. It is fortified, and tolerably built, situated on the Aller, which is here navigable, and, behind the New Town, is joined by the Fuhsee, and has some trade and manufactures. It contains the courts of appeal for the Hanoverian territory at large. It was formerly the capital of a duchy belonging to the house of Brunswick.

ZELTER, Charles Frederic, professor and director of the singing academy in Berlin, a man of much musical talent, was born in 1758, in Berlin. In his seventeenth year, he began to learn the trade of his father, a mason. All his leisure, however, was given to music. Bach's and Hasse's works first made him acquainted with the rules of scientific composition. At last his father forbade him the study of music altogether, because he neglected his trade. In 1783, he became a master mason. Being now independent, he became an active member of the singing academy above mentioned, of which he was made director in 1800. In 1809, he was made professor of music in the Berlin academy of arts and sciences, and founded the first Liedertafel (glee club) in Berlin. From this glee club numerous others proceeded in Germany, to which the amateurs of music are indebted for many beautiful tunes and songs. He composed many glees for this club. He also composed other music; but his glees and motetts (q. v.) are his best productions. He has done much towards improving vocal music in Berlin, a city perhaps superior to any in respect to the general diffusion of fine singing. Died '32. ZEMLIN. (See Semlin.) ZEMZEM. (See Mecca.)

ZEND-AVESTA (Living Word) is the

name of the sacred books which the descendants of the ancient Persians, the Guebers (q. v.) in Persia, and the Parsees in India, assert that they received, more than four thousand years ago, from their lawgiver, and the founder of their religion, Zoroaster (q. v.), or Zerdusht. English and French travellers, at an early period, gave some information respecting the religion of the Guebers and their sacred books. Anquetil du Perron (q. v.) learned, during his residence in India, the sacred language in which those books are written, brought copies of them to Earope in 1762, and published, in 1771, a French translation of the Zend-Avesta English and German scholars soon raised doubts respecting the genuineness and antiquity of these writings, which occasioned disputes. Even the fire-worshippers (q. v.) themselves are said to have admitted that the real Zend-Avesta has long been lost. Their present books are said to be legends of the middle ages, and the religion of the present Guebers a mixture of ancient Greek, Christian, and perhaps even Mohammedan notions. Rask (q. v.), however, in his treatise On the Age and Genuineness of the Zend Language and of the Zend-Avesta (translated into German by Hagen; Berlin, 1826), maintains the genuineness of the ZendAvesta, at least of some parts; but who is the author he does not decide. The Zend-Avesta consists of five books, written in the Zend language. A part of it was revealed to Zoroaster by Ormuzd, the highest among good beings. They treat of Ormuzd, and of the antag onist principle of evil, Ahriman; also of the genii of heaven (the angels), the rewards and punishments of a future state, &c., and are read aloud during religious service. Another part consists of a collection of prayers, glorifications of the most important genii, moral sentiments, &c. These are by various authors, and written in various dialects. There are also historical and geographical notices contained in these books, which, however, seem to be capable of various interpretations. Respecting the contents of the Zend writings, see Rhodes's work, The Sacred Traditions and the complete Religions System of the ancient Bactrians, Medans and Persians, or of the Zend People (Frankfort on the Maine, 1820). The great work of M. Burnouf, secretary of the Asiatic society in Paris, will throw light on this subject. (See Burnouf, Appendix to this volume.)

ZENITH; an Arabic word, used in as

1

1

tronomy to denote the vertical point of the heavens, or that point of the heavens directly over the head of the observer. Each point on the surface of the earth has therefore its corresponding zenith. The zenith is called the "pole of the horizon," as it is 90° distant from every point of that circle. (See Nadir.) The zenith distance of a heavenly body is the arc intercepted between the body and the zenith, being the same as the co-altitude of the body.

ZENO; a name which often appears in ancient history. Two philosophers of this name are particularly celebrated:1. Zeno, the Eleatic, of Elea, or Velia, a Greek colony in Magna Græcia, lived about the eightieth Olympiad (about 450 B. C.), at which time he went with Parmenides to Athens. He was a disciple of the Eleatic school, founded by Xenophanes. (q. v.) To him is ascribed the invention, or at least the developement, of dialectics, of which he made use with much acuteness for the defence of the Eleatic system. Of his writings, nothing has come down to us. According to Aristotle, he taught that there is only one being, which is God; that in nature there is no vacuum, and that motion is impossible. Seneca even asserts that he carried his scepticism so far as to deny the existence of external objects. He is represented as a man of noble spirit, full of vigor and patriotism. Failing in his attempt to deliver Elea from the tyrant Nearchus, he calmnly endured the torture, and at length bit off his own tongue, in order to prevent himself from betraying his companions. It is said that he was at last pounded in a mortar; and that, in the midst of his torments, he called Nearchus to him, as if he wished to reveal something of importance. The tyrant approached, and Zeno, pretending to whisper, caught his ear with his teeth, and bit it off.

2. Zeno, the founder of the Stoic sect, was born at Cittium, a maritime town of Cyprus, about 366 B. C. His father was a merchant, who occasionally visited Athens, where he purchased many of the writings of the Socratic philosophers for his son, who early displayed a great propensity for learning. When he became a man, he visited Athens himself, where he became the disciple of the Cynic philosopher Crates; but, wishing to extend the sphere of his knowledge beyond the narrow limits of a sect which prided itself in a contempt for all science, he forsook Crates for Stilpo, and various other mas

ters, finishing his course of study in the school of Polemon, who detected his purpose of selecting materials for the formation of a sect of his own. The design he ultimately carried into execution, in a place called the painted porch, from its being adorned with the pictures of Polygnotus, and other eminent painters, and more generally the Stoa, or porch, whence all his followers acquired the name of Stoics. Zeno obtained great fame by the acuteness of his reasonings; and, his private character being also highly respectable, he was much beloved and esteemed by his numerous disciples, and even by the great. The Athenians placed so much confidence in his integrity, that they deposited the keys of their citadel in his hands, and decreed him a golden crown and a statue. He is said to have come rich into Greece, but he lived with great simplicity and abstemiousness; and the modesty of his disposition led him to shun crowds and personal distinctions. He reached the advanced age of ninety-eight, when, hurting one of his fingers in a fall, he interpreted the accident into a warning to depart, and, repeating from the tragedy of Niobe, "Here I am; why do you call me?" went home and strangled himself, on the principle that a man was at liberty to part with life whenever he deemed it eligible to do so. The Athenians honored him with a public funeral and a tomb, with an inscription recording his services to youth, by his rigid inculcation of virtuous principles and good conduct. His death is dated in the first year of the 129th Olympiad (B. C. 263). As the founder of a new school, he seems rather to have invented new terms than new doctrines, and agreed in many points with his masters of the Platonic sect. In morals, he followed the principles of the Cynics, freed of their practical indecencies, which induced Juvenal to observe that the two sects only differed in the tunic. (For an account of his philosophy, see Stoics.)

ZENO, Nicholas and Anthony; two celebrated Venetian navigators of the fourteenth century, to whom the discovery of America, prior to the voyage of Columbus, has been attributed. The story is as follows: Nicholas having set sail in a ship equipped at his own cost, on a voyage to Flanders and England (about 1388), was driven by a storm upon an island called by the inhabitants Friseland, which geographers suppose to have been one of the Faroe islands. Here he was kindly received by a prince of some

neighboring islands, called Porland, who was then meditating the conquest of Friseland. Having aided that prince in conquering this and other northern islands, Nicholas Zeno sent for his brother Anthony, who joined him there in 1391 or 1392. The former died about 1395; but the latter remained in the country till about 1405, when he returned to Venice. During their residence in Friseland, their attention was attracted by the report of a fisherman concerning some land about 1000 miles west of Friseland, inhabited by people living in cities, acquainted with the mechanical arts, and possessing some Latin books, which, however, they did not understand. While in that country, which he said was called Estotiland, the same person declared that he went, in a fleet fitted out by the prince of Estotiland, to a country to the south, called Drogeo, the inhabitants of which were naked and barbarous, though, far to the south-west, there was another civilized country, where the people had great abundance of gold and silver, and in their temples sacrificed human victims. This account determined the prince to send an expedition thither under Anthony Zeno, which, however, returned, after discover ing the island of Icaria, and visiting Greenland, without accomplishing the objects of the voyage. The relation and letters of the brothers Zeni, and the map of the country mentioned in them, remained in the family archives a century and a half, when they were published by Marcolini, under the title of the Discovery of the Isles of Friseland, Esland, Engroveland, Estotiland and Icaria (Venice, 1588). This work is given in the second volume of Ramusio's collection, and in the third volume of Hakluyt, and has excited much discussion among geographical writers, such as Ortelius, Mercator, Forster, Malte-Brun, &c. The latter considers Estotiland to be Newfoundland, Drogeo, Nova Scotia or New England, and the civilized people to the south, the Mexicans, or some ancient nation of Florida or Louisiana. Irving (Life of Columbus, appendix, No. xiii) remarks that, although the brothers Zeni probably visited Greenland, the rest of the story resembles the fables circulated shortly after the discovery of Columbus, to arrogate to other nations and individuals the credit of the achievement.-See, further, Daru's Histoire de Venise (vol. i, b. 40). At all events, it is evident that Columbus had no knowledge of these Punts, as he sailed under the expecta

tion of finding land to the west, and not to the north.

ZENO, Apostolo, an eminent Italian man of letters, was born at Venice, in 1668. He was the son of a physician in that city, who was a descendant from a noble family long settled in the island of Candia. He was educated in a seminary of religion at Castelli, but principally culti vated polite literature, and the study of Italian history and antiquities. He first acquired celebrity by his melo-dramas—a species of poetry then much in vogue in Italy. In 1696, he instituted at Venice the academy Degli Animosi, and was the editor of the Giornale de' Letterati d'Italia, of which he published thirty-eight volumes between the years 1710 and 1719,and which still maintains its reputation. His first musical drama, L'Inganni Felice,was performed-at Venice in 1695; and between that time and bis quitting Vienna, to which be was invited by Charles VI, in 1718, who made him both his poet and historian, he produced forty-six operas and seventeen oratorios. He continued eleven years in the imperial service, at the expiration of which he obtained his dismission from the emperor, his personal friend, who allowed him to retain his salary on condition of furnishing annually a drama for music; which he continued to do until the ap pointment of Metastasio. On his return to Venice, he lived in literary leisure until his death, Nov. 11, 1750, a few months before which he gave his valuable library and collection of coins to the Dominicans. Zeno was of much service to the musical poetry of the Italians, especially the opera, to which he gave a more regular form. (See Opera, and Italian Poetry.) But his labors as a biographer and historian are of more importance. These include his notes to Fontanini's Biblioteca delia Eloquenza Italiana, his Dissertazioni Vossiane. his additions to Foresti's Mappamon do Istorico, and his biographies of Sabellico, Guarini, Davila, and the three Manutiuses. He also aided the labors of others, as Muratori. The dramatic works of Zeno were published at Venice in 1744 (10 vols., 8vo.). They rank not very high as poetical compositions; but he is the first Italian poet who gave his countrymen good rules for tragedy, and freed it from the intermixture of low buffoonery, with which the Italian serious drama was before infected. His letters, which were published in 1752 (3 vols., 8vo.), contain much sound criticism, and many notices of the literary history of his time.

ZENOBIA, queen of Palmyra, claimed

her descent from the Macedonian kings of Egypt. She was instructed in the sciences by the celebrated Longinus, and made such progress that, besides her native tongue, she spoke the Latin, Greek and Syrian languages. She also patronised learned men, and herself formed an epitome of Egyptian history. She was married to Odenatus, king of Palmyra, and accompanied him both in the war and the chase; and the success of his military expedition against the Persians is, in a great degree, attributed to her prudence and courage. Gallienus, in return for services which tended to preserve the East to the Romans after the capture of Valerian by Sapor, king of Persia, declared Odenatus emperor; on whose death, in 267, she assumed the sovereignty, under the title of queen of the East. She preserved the provinces which had been ruled by Odenatus, and was preparing to make other conquests, when the succession of Aurelian to the purple led to a remarkable change of fortune. That martial prince, disgusted at the usurpation of the richest provinces of the East by a female, determined to make war upon her; and, having gained two battles, besieged her in Palmyra, where she defended herself with great bravery. At length, finding that the city would be obliged to surrender, she quitted it privately; but the emperor, having notice of her escape, caused her to be pursued with such diligence that she was overtaken just as she got into a boat to cross the Euphrates. Aurelian spared her life, but made her serve to grace his triumph. The Roman soldiers demanded her life; and, according to Zosimus, she purchased her safety by sacrificing her ministers, among whom was the distinguished Longinus. She was allowed to pass the remainder of her life as a Roman matron; and her daughters were married, by Aurelian, into families of distinction. Her only surviving son retired into Armenia, where the emperor bestowed on him a small principality.

ZENTNER, George Frederic, baron von, Bavarian minister of justice, was born in 1752, in humble life, at Strassenheim, in the Palatinate, studied at Metz, Göttingen and Wetzlar, and was made professor of law in the university of Heidelberg, where he began to lecture, in 1779, with much success. At a later period, he was attached to the legation of the Bavarian Palatinate, at the congress of Rastadt (q. v.), and, in 1799, was invited to Munich as privy counsellor. From him originat

[blocks in formation]

ed the two ordinances of 1799 and 1802, for the improvement of education in Bavaria, which have had such success that the Bavarian system makes an epoch in the history of education. In 1819, he was raised to the rank of nobility. In 1820, he was made minister, and, in 1823, minister of justice. The Bavarian constitution is almost entirely his work.

ZEOLITE (mesotype, natrolite, skolezite) occurs in delicate crystals, whose primary form is the right rhombic prism of 91° 20'; hardness about that of apatite; specific gravity 2.2; cleavage parallel to the lateral planes of the primary form; color white, or grayish-white; crystals translucent or transparent. It is also found massive, in radiating masses. Before the blow-pipe, on charcoal, it becomes opaque, and then vitrifies without intumescence. It is composed, according to Vauquelin, of Silex,. Alumine, Lime, Water,

[ocr errors]
[merged small][ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

50.34 29.30

9.46

[ocr errors]

10.00

[merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small]

Zeolite is found in trap and lava. The finest specimens occur in Iceland, Tyrol, and the Faroe islands. It has also been met with, in small quantity, at several places in the U. States.

ZEPHYR; a soft, cool, agreeable' wind; in Greece, the west, or rather west-southwest wind. The Greek name, according to the etymology, signifies life-bringing, because, at the time when this wind begins to blow, the plants are restored to life by the balmy spring air.-Zephyrus, according to the Grecian mythology, as well as that of the Romans, was one of the inferior deities—a son of Æolus, or of Astræus and of Aurora, a lover of Chloris or Flora. By the harpy Podarge, he was the sire of the swift horses of Achilles, Xanthos and Balios. love being rejected by Hyacinthus, he was the cause of his death by blowing Apollo's quoit against his head. Some make him the husband of one of the Hours. Flowers and fruits are under his protection. He is represented as a gentle, beautiful youth, naked, with a wreath on his head, or flowers in the fold of his mantle.

His

ZERBST, or ANHALT-ZERBST, formerly

a small German principality, which, in 1793, on the extinction of the branch of the house of Anhalt in possession of it, was divided between the three other branches of that house. (See Anhalt.) Zerbst, the capital, sixty-five miles southwest of Berlin, now belongs to the duchy of Anhalt-Dessau. It is situated on the small river Neithe, near the Elbe, and has a population of 8000 souls: the palace of the former princes is outside of the walls. Brewing forms a main branch of its industry, and the Zerbst beer is famous. Ornamental manufactures in gold, silver and jewellery are also carried on

here.

ZERDUSHT. (See Zoroaster.)

ZERENNER, Charles Christopher Theophilus, director of the seminary for school-masters in Magdeburg, and superintendent of the schools in that city, was born in 1780, at Beiendorf, near Magdeburg, where his father was a clergyman. He studied theology at Halle, and in 1802 became a teacher, in 1805 a minister in Magdeburg, and in 1823 director of the seminary for school-masters (see Schools) in that city. In 1819, a reform was commenced in the schools of that place, which has raised them to a degree of excellence that has attracted the attention even of foreign countries. It is, in a great degree, the work of Zerenner, and is described in his Brief Account of the newly-organized School System in Magdeburg (1820-21), and more fully in the first number of volume first of his Anuals for Popular Schools, which has also appeared under the title of the School System of the City of Magdeburg (Magdeburg, 1825). He also founded a fund for the support of the widows of school-masters. In 1825, there were eighty-two students in his seminary above mentioned. Zerenner is also the author of many works on education, and for the purposes of education, which have met with much and deserved success.

ZETHES, ZETES, or ZETUS; a son of Boreas, king of Thrace, and Orithyia, who accompanied, with his brother Calais, the Argonauts to Colchis. In Bithynia, the two brothers, who are represented with wings, delivered Phineus from the continual persecution of the harpies, and drove these monsters as far as the island called Strophades, where, at last, they were stopped by Iris, who promised them that Phineus should no longer be tormented by them. They were both killed, as some say, by Hercules, during the Argonautic expedition, and were changed

into those winds which generally blow before the dog-star appears, and are called Podromi by the Greeks. Their sister Cleopatra married Phineus, king of Bithynia.

ZETHUS. (See Amphion.)

ZETOUN, OF ZEITOUN, GULF OF (anciently Malaie gulf), is a gulf or bay on the eastern coast of Greece, north-west of the island of Negropont, or Eubos. By the protocol of February, 1830, the northern boundary of Greece, beginning at the mouth of the Aspropotamus, terminated at the gulf of Zetoun. But, on the 21st of July, 1832, the sultan signed a protocol, assenting to the extension of the frontier, as desired by the London conference, namely, from the gulf of Volo to the gulf of Arta.

ZEUS. (See Jupiter.)

ZEUXIS; a celebrated painter, who is said to have begun to practise his art in the fourth year of the ninety-fifth Olympiad (B. C. 397). He was a native of Heracles, in Magna Græcia, and a pupil of Apollodorus. He is said, by Quintilian, to have been the first who understood the management of light and shade; but, at the same time, he was thought to have given too much of bulk and massiveness to the human figure. He stood extremely high in his profession, excelled all his predecessors, and many stories are told of the fidelity with which he copied nature. One of his most famous pictures was a Helen, which he executed for the Crotonians (according to some, for Agrigentum), as an ornament for their temple of Juno. This figure was celebrated by the poets and amateurs of antiquity, as the finest specimen of art existing; and the artist himself, who was very vain and ostentatious, inscribed under it the lines of Homer, in which Priam speaks his admiration of the beauty of Helen. As models, he had selected five beautiful girls. He became very rich, and, at length, gave his pictures away, affecting to regard them as above all price. One of his finest performances, a Hercules strangling some Serpents in his Cradle, with Alcmena and Amphitryon looking on in terror, was presented to the Agngentines. Of the circumstances of his private life, little is known; nor is it recorded how long he lived. Tradition, most likely erroneously, attributes his death to a very whimsical cause. It is said, that, having painted an old woman, on attentively surveying his work, he was seized with so violent a fit of laughter that he died on the spot. His contest

« AnteriorContinua »