Open main menu
This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.

bathing. The season is almost continuous; in the winter the English, in the summer Russians, Spaniards and French fill the hotels of the town. Among its attractions is a golf club, established in 1888, with a course of 18 holes.

BIAS of Priene in Ionia, one of the so-called Seven Sages of Greece, son of Teutamus, flourished about 570 B.C. He was famous for his patriotism, the nobility of his character and his eloquence. A number of gnomes or aphorisms are attributed to him, which may be found collected in F. W. A. Mullach, Fragmenta Philosophorum Graecorum (1860). He is said to have written a poem on the best means of making Ionia prosperous. His advice to its inhabitants, at the time of the Persian invasion, to migrate to Sardinia and there found a single pan-Ionic city (Herodotus i. 170), has generally been regarded as historical. One much-quoted saying of his may be mentioned. When his native town was besieged by the enemy, the inhabitants resolved to escape with their most valuable belongings. One of them seeing Bias without anything, advised him to follow the example of the rest. “I am doing so,” said lie, “for I carry all my belongings with me” (omnia mea mecum porto). He was honoured with a splendid funeral, and a sanctuary called Teutamium was dedicated to him.

See Bohren, De Septem Sapientibus (1860).

BIAS (from the Fr. biais, of unknown origin; the derivation from Lat. bifax, two-faced, is wrong), something oblique or slanting. The term is used especially of a piece of cloth cut obliquely across the texture, or of a seam of two such pieces brought together; and in the game of bowls (q.v.) it is applied alike to the one-sided construction of the bowl, flattened on one side and protruding on the other, and to the slanting line the bowl takes when thrown. The figurative sense of the word, prejudice or undue leaning to one side of a subject, is derived from this bowling term.

BIBACULUS, MARCUS FURIUS, Roman poet, flourished during the last century of the republic. According to Jerome, he was born at Cremona in 103 B.C., and probably lived to a great age. He wrote satirical poems after the manner of Catullus, whose bitterness he rivalled, according to Quintilian (Instit. x. i. 196), in his iambics. He even attacked Augustus (and perhaps Caesar), who treated the matter with indifference. He was also author of prose Lucubrationes and perhaps of an epic poem on Caesar’s Gallic wars (Pragmatia Belli Gallici). Otto Ribbeck attributes to him one of the shorter poems usually assigned to Virgil. It is doubtful whether he is the person ridiculed by Horace (Satires, ii 5. 40) and whether he is identical with the turgidus Alpinus (Satires, i. 10. 36), the author of an Aethiopis dealing with the life and death of Memnon and of a poem on the Rhine. Some critics, on the ground that Horace would not have ventured to attack so dangerous an adversary, assume the existence of a poet whose real name was Furius (or Cornelius) Alpinus. Bibaculus was ridiculed for his high-flown and exaggerated style and manner of expression.

See Weichert, “De M. Furio Bibaculo,” in his Poetarum Latinorum Reliquiae (1830); fragments in L. Müller’s edition of Catullus in the Teubner Series (1870).

BIBER, HEINRICH JOHANN FRANZ VON (1644–1704), German violinist and composer, was for some time musical conductor at Salzburg, and was ennobled by the emperor Leopold in 1681. He is regarded as the earliest important German composer for the violin, his works including sonatas and church music.

BIBERACH, a town of Germany, in the kingdom of Württemberg, on the Riss, a small affluent of the Danube, 22 m. S.S.W. from Ulm. Pop. (1900) 8390. It is still surrounded by medieval walls and towers, and is strikingly picturesque. Its principal church dates from the 12th century, and it possesses a hospital with rich endowments. Its main industries are cloth, bell-casting, toys and zinc wares, and its fruit markets are famous.

Biberach appears as a village in the 8th century, and in 1312 it became a free imperial city. During the Thirty Years’ War it underwent various vicissitudes, and was for a while held by the Swedes. In 1707 it was captured and put to ransom by the French, who afterwards, in 1796 and 1800, defeated the Austrians in the neighbourhood. In 1803 the city was deprived of its imperial freedom and assigned to Baden, and in 1806 was transferred to Württemberg. Biberach is the birthplace of the sculptor Johann Lorenz Natter (1705–1763) and the painter Bernhard Neher (1806–1886); Christoph Martin Wieland, born in 1733 at the neighbouring village of Oberholzheim, spent several years in the town.

BIBIRINE, or Bebeerine, C19H21NO3, an alkaloid obtained from the bark and fruit of the greenheart (q.v.) tree, Nectandra rodiaei, called bibiru or sipiri in Guiana, where the tree grows. The substance was discovered about the year 1835 by Hugh Rodie, a surgeon in Demerara, who used it as a febrifuge in substitution for quinine.

BIBLE. The word “Bible,” which in English, as in medieval Latin, is treated as a singular noun, is in its original Greek form a plural, τὰ βιβλία, the (sacred) books—correctly expressing the fact that the sacred writings of Christendom (collectively described by this title) are made up of a number of independent records, which set before us the successive stages in the history of revelation. The origin of each of these records forms a distinct critical problem, and for the discussion of these questions of detail the reader is referred to the separate articles on the Biblical books. An account of the Bible as a whole involves so many aspects of interest, that, apart from the separate articles on its component books, the general questions of importance arising out of its present shape require to be discussed in separate sections of this article. They are here divided accordingly, into two main divisions:—(A) Old Testament, and (B) New Testament; and under each of these are treated (1) the Canon, (2) the texts and versions, (3) textual criticism, (4) the “higher criticism,” i.e. a general historical account (more particularly considered for separate books in the articles on them) of the criticism and views based on the substance and matter, as apart from criticism devoted to the correction and elucidation of the text, and (5) chronology. For the literary history of the translated English Bible, see the separate article under Bible, English.

(A) Old Testament

1. Canon.

We shall begin by giving a general account of the historical and literary conditions under which the unique literature of the Old Testament sprang up, of the stages by which it gradually reached its present form, and (so far as this is possible) of the way in which the Biblical books were brought together in a canonical collection. There exists no formal historical account of the formation of the Old Testament canon. The popular idea that this canon was closed by Ezra has no foundation in antiquity. Certainly in the apocryphal book of 2 Esdras, written towards the end of the 1st century A.D., we read (xiv. 20-26, 38-48), that, the law being burnt, Ezra, at his own request, was miraculously inspired to rewrite it; he procured accordingly five skilled scribes, and dictated to them for forty days, during which time they wrote 94 books, i.e. not only (according to the Jewish reckoning) the 24 books of the Old Testament, but 70 apocryphal books as well, which, being filled, it is said, with a superior, or esoteric wisdom, are placed upon even a higher level (vv. 46, 47) than the Old Testament itself. No argument is needed to show that this legend is unworthy of credit; even if it did deserve to be taken seriously, it still contains nothing respecting either a completion of the canon, or even a collection, or redaction, of sacred books by Ezra. Yet it is frequently referred to by patristic writers; and Ezra, on the strength of it, is regarded by them as the genuine restorer of the lost books of the Old Testament (see Ezra).

In 2 Macc. ii. 13 it is said that Nehemiah, “founding a library, gathered together the things concerning the kings and prophets, and the (writings) of David, and letters of kings about sacred gifts.” These statements are found in a part of 2 Macc. which is admitted to be both late and full of untrustworthy matter; still, the passage may preserve an indistinct reminiscence of an early stage in the formation of the canon, the writings referred