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MAIN—MAINA

famous disciple, Joseph Aknin. But his early life in Egypt was fraught with deep sorrow. His father died soon after their arrival, and Maimonides himself suffered severely from prostration and sickness. His brother David, jointly with whom he carried on a trade in gems, was shipwrecked in the Indian Ocean. With him perished the entire fortune of the family. Forced to earn a livelihood, Maimonides turned to medicine. The fame of his skill eventually brought him the appointment of body physician to Saladin, to whom, it is said, he was so attached that when Richard I. wrote from Ascalon, offering him a similar post at the English court, Maimonides refused. He married the sister of Ibn al Mali, one of the royal secretaries. In 1186, his son Abraham was born. His remaining years were spent in ceaseless activity and in controversy, which he sought to avoid. He died amidst universal sorrow and veneration. The works of Maimonides fall into three periods: (a) To the Spanish period belong his commentary on the whole Talmud (not fully carried out), a treatise on the calendar (Maamar ha-ibbur), a treatise on logic (Millolh Higgayon), and his commentary on the Mishnah (this was called Siraj or Maor, Le. “ Light ": begun 1158, completed 1168 in Egypt). (b) Vl/bile he was in Fez, he wrote an essay on the Sanctification of the Name of God (Maamar Kiddush Hashem, Iggereth Hashemad). (c) The works written in Egypt were: Letter to the Yemenites (Iggereth Teman or Pethalz Tiqvah); Responsa on questions of law; Biblical and Rabbinical Code (Misnheh Torah or Yad Hahazaka, completed 1180); Sepher hamilzwzth, an abbreviated handbook of the preceding; and his great philosophical work llloreh Nebuhim or “ the guide of the perplexed ” (I 190). To these must be added certain portions of the Mishnah commenter, such as the “ Eight Chapters, ” the discussion on reward and punishment and immortality, the Jewish Creed, which have acquired fame as independent works. g

The influence of Moses ben Maimon is incalculable. “ From Moses unto Moses there arose not one like Moses, ” is the verdict of posterity. Maimonides was the great exponent of reason in faith and toleration in theology. One of the main services to European thought of the “ Guide” was its independent criticism of some of Aristotle's principles. His, codification of the Talmud was equally appreciated in the study of the scholar and in practical life. Christian Europe owed much to Maimonides. Not only did his “ Guide” influence scholasticism in general, but it was from his Code that the Church derived its medieval knowledge of the Synagogue.

A complete bibliography will be found in Maimonides, by David Yellin and Israel Abrahams (London, 1903); the final chapter of that work gives a summary of the influence of Maimonides on Christian philosophers such as Aquinas, and Jewish such as Spinoza. The “ Guide " has been translated into English by M. Friedlander (1881~1885; new ed., 1905). See also Jewish Encyclopedia, articles suv., and the volumes edited by Guttmann, Moses ben Maimon (Leipzig, 1908, &c.). (H. Ln.)


MAIN (Lat. Moenus), a river of Germany, and the most important right-bank tributary of the Rhine. It has two sources, the Weisse Main (White Main), which rises in the Fichtelgebirge on the east side of the Ochsenkopf, and the Rote Main (Red Main), which, rising on the eastern slope of the Frankish ]ura, flows past Bayreuth. They unite 3 m. below Kulmbach, 920 ft. above the sea. Hence the river, already of considerable size, pursues a north-westerly direction, skirting the spurs of the Frankish ]ura in a pleasant valley. At Lichtenfels the river takes a south-westerly course, which it retains until entering the fertile basin of Bamberg. Here it receives from the south-east the waters of its chief tributary, the Regnitz, and enters upon its middle course. Its direction is now again north-west, and meandering through pleasant vales and pastures it passes Hassfurt and reaches Schweinfurt. Its course is now almost due south to Ochsenfurt, when it again proceeds north-west. Continuing in this direction amid vine-clad hills, it washes the walls of the university city of Wtirzburg, and thence, dividing the forest-clad ranges of the Spessart and the Odenwald, reaches Gemiinden. Here it is joined from the right by the Frankish Saale and, turning abruptly south, receives at Wertheim the beautiful Tauber. Feudal castles and medieval towns now crown its banks, notably, Freudenberg and Miltenberg. From the latter it proceeds due north to Aschatfenburg, whence passing Frankfort it pours its yellow waters into the green waters of the Rhine just above Mainz. The Main has a total length of 310 m. and drains a basin of approximately II, OOO sq. m. It is navigable from the confidence of the Regnitz, 240 m. from its mouth, for barges and other small craft, and through the Ludwig Canal is connected with the Danube.

See Ulrici, Das Maingebiet in seiner nahirlichen Beschafenheit (Kassel, 1885); E. Faber, 'Zur Hydrographie des Maingebiets (Munich, 1895). and Lill, Mainthal, Main und Mainschzfahrt (Berlin, 1904).


MAIN (from the Aryan root which appears in “ may” and “ might, ” and Lat. magnus, great), a word meaning properly power or strength, especially physical. This use chiefly survives in the expression “ with might and main.” The word is more common as a substantial elliptical use of the adjective, which usually has the sense of principal or chief in size, strength, importance, &c. Thus “ the main, ” the high open sea, is for “ main sea, ” cf. “ mainland, ” the principal part of a territory excluding islands and sometimes far-projecting peninsulas. The expression “ the Spanish main ” properly meant that part of the main land of the N.E. coast of South America stretching from the Orinoco to the Isthmus of Panama, and the former Spanish possessions in Central America bordering on the Caribbean Sea, but it is often loosely used, especially in Connexion with the buccaneers, of the Caribbean Sea itself. The term “ main ” is also thus used of a principal pipe or cable for conducting gas, water, electricity, &c. The elliptical use does not appear, however, in such expressions as main road, line, stream. Another use of the word “main " has a somewhat obscure history. It appears as a term in the game of hazard, and also in cock-fighting. In

a match, and for'the cocks engaged in

it is the number called by the “ caster "

thrown; this may be any number from ive to nine inclusive. The usual derivation is from the French main, a hand, but according to the New English Dictionary there is no evidence for this, and the more probable explanation is that it is an adaptation of “main ” meaning principal or chief. From this use of the word in hazard the expression “ main chance” is derived. “ Main, ” a shortened form of domain or demesne, only now survives in Scotland, usually in the plural “ mains ” for a home farm. A


MAINA (or MANI) and MAINOTES, a district and people of the Peloponnesus, the modern Morea. Maina is the country occupied by the mountain range of Taygetus from Sparta to Cape Matapan, the ancient Taenarum. It is now divided between the modern districts Oetylos and Gythion. Before the organization of the present kingdom of Greece, Maina was subdivided into "Eiw Méw-17, Outer Maina, from the frontier of Kalamata, on the Gulf of Messenia, to Vitylo (Oetylos) and inland to:the summit of Taygetus; Ké.TwM(iV11, Lower Maina, from Vitylo to Cape Matapan; and Méaa Mévn, or Inner Maina, on the east, and on the Gulf of Laconia as far as the plain of Elos. It contained over a hundred villages. The country is mountainous and inaccessible, a formation to which it owes its historical importance. The Mainotes claim to descend from the Spartans, and probably represent the Eleuthero, or free, Laconians who were delivered by Rome from the power of Sparta, as is suggested by the traces of ancient Greek in their dialect and by their physical type. Their country being a natural fortress, they were able to defend themselves against the Byzantine emperors, the barbarians who broke into the empire, the Latin princes of Achaea of the house of Villehardouin, and the Turks. As their country is also poor and maritime, they were early tempted to take to piratical adventure. Gibbon says that “ in the time of Constantine Porphyrogenitus they had acquired the name of Mainotes, Linder which they dishonour the claim of liberty by the inhuman pillage of all that is shipwrecked on their rocky shore.” Their neighbours gave their country the name of “ Kakaboulia ”-the land of wicked counsels. The passes of their mountains were elaborately fortified and their villages were full of fortified towers the last it is used for

a match. In hazard

before the dice are