Open main menu
This page needs to be proofread.
541
MANASSES—MANATI

Some details of the history of this twofold branch of the Israelites are contained in the stories of Gideon (W. l/lanasseh) and Jephthah (E. Manasseh). The relations between Saul and Jabesh-Gilead point to the close bond uniting the two districts, but the details have been variously interpreted: Winckler, for example, suggesting that Saul himself was originally from E. l/Ianasseh and that he followed in the steps of Jephthah (Keilinschr. n. d. alle Test., pp. 216 seq. 227). Generally speaking, its position in the west made it share the fortunes of Ephraim, whilst on the east the proximity of Ammonites and Moabites controlled its history; see also the articles on its southern neighbours, Gad and Reuben, and the artic1es Genealogy (Biblical), and Jews; History.


MANASSES, CONSTANTINE, Byzantine chronicler, flourished in the 12th century during the reign of Manuel I. (Comnenus) (1143-1180). He was the author of a Chronicle or historical synopsis of events from the creation of the world to the end of the reign of Nicephorus Botaniates (1081), written by direction of Irene, the emperor's sister-in-law. It consists of about 7000 lines in the so-called “ political ” metre? There is little to be said of it, except that it is rather more poetical than the iambic chronicle of Ephraim (about 150 years later). It obtained great popularity and appeared in a free prose translation; it was also translated into Slavonic. The poetical romance of the Loves of Aristander and Callithea, also in “ political ” verse, is only known from the fragments preserved in the 'Po5w1/ia (rose-garden) of Macarius Chrysocephalus (14th century). Manasses also wrote a short biography of Oppian, and some descriptive pieces (all except one unpublished) on artistic and other subjects.

Eitions.-Chronicle in Bonn, Corpus Scriptorum hist. Byz., 1st ed. Bekker (1837) and in J. P. Migne, Patrologia graeca, cxxvii.; Aristander and Callithea in R. Hercher's Scriptores erotici graeci, ii. (1859); “Life of Oppian " in A. Westermann, Vitarum scriptores graeci minores (1845). A long didactic poem in “ political ” verse (edited by E. Miller in Annuaire de l'assoc. pour l'encouragernent des études grecques en France, ix. 1875) is attributed to Manasses or one of his imitators. See also F. Hirsch, Byzantinische Studien (1876); C. Krumbacher, Geschichte der byzantinischen Litteratur (1897).


MANASSES, PRAYER OF, an apocryphal book of the Old Testament. This writing, which since the Council of Trent has been relegated by the Church of Rome to the position of an appendix to the Vulgate, was placed by Luther and the translators of the English Bible among the apocryphal books. In some MSS. of the Septuagint it is the eighth among the canticles appended to the Psalter, though in many. Greek psalters, which include the canticles, it is not found at all. In Swete's Old Testament in Greek, iii. 802 sqq., A is printed with the variants of T (Rsalterium turicense).2 From the statements in 2 Chron. xxxiii. 12, 13, 18, rg, it follows that the Old Testament chronicler found a prayer attributed to Manasseh in his Hebrew sources, The History of the Kings of Israel and The History of the Sears. Naturally the question arose, had the existing Prayer of Manasses any direct connexion with the prayer referred to by the chronicler P Ewald was of opinion that the Greek was an actual translation of the lost Hebrew; but Ball more wisely takes it as a free rendering of a. lost Haggadic narrative founded on the older document from which the chronicler drew his information. This view he supports by showing that there was once a considerable literature in circulation regarding Manasseh's later history. On the other hand most scholars take the Prayer to have been written in Greek, e.g. Fritzsche, Schiirer and Ryssel (Kautzsch, Apok. u. -Pscud. i. 165-168).

Political " verse or metre is the name given to a kind of verse found as early as the 6th century in proverbs, and characteristic of Byzantine and modern Greek poetry. It takes no account of the quantity of syllables; the scansion depends bn accent, and there is always an accent on the last syllable but one. It is specially used of an iambic verse with fifteen syllables, i.e. seven feet and an unaccented syllable over. Byron compares (“ A captain bold of Halifax who lived in country quarters.” Such facile metres are called “political, " in the sense of "commonplace, " “of the city." Cf. Gibbon's Decline and Fall (ed. Bury, 1898), vi. 108; Du Cange, Gloss. med. et injin. lat. (vi. 395), who has an interesting quotation from Leo Allatius. Leo explains “ political " as implying that the verses are “ scorta et meretrices, quod omnibus sunt obsequiosae et peculiar es, et servitutem publicam serviunt." 2 Nestle (Septuaginta Studien III.) contends that the text of A and T is derived from the Apost. Const. ii. 22, or from its original, and not from a MS. of the Septuagint.

This line penitential prayer seems to have been modelled after the penitential psalms. It exhibits considerable unity of thought, and the style is, in the main, dignified and simple. As regards the date, Fritzsche, Ball and Ryssel agree in assigning this psalm to the Maccabean period. Its eschatology and doctrine of “ divine forgiveness ” may point to an earlier date.

The best short account of the book is given by Ball (Speakefs A pocrypha, ii. 361-37I); see also Porter in Hastings's Dict. Bible, iii. 232-233. (R. H. C.)


MANATI (often anglicized as “manatee”), the name, adapted from the Carib rnonattoui, given by the Spanish colonists of the West Indies to the American representative of a small group of herbivorous aquatic mammals, constituting, with their allies the dugong and the now extinct Rhylina, the order Sirenia. The name, though possibly of Mandingo origin (see MANDINGO), was latinized as manatus, furnished with hands, thus referring the etymology to the somewhat hand-like form, or hand-like use, of the fore-flippers, which alone serve these creatures for limbs. Manatis, as shown in the illustration in the article SIRENIA, are somewhat whale-like in shape, having a similar horizontally expanded tail-fin; but here the resemblance to the Cetacea ceases, the whole organization of these animals being constructed on entirely different lines. The American manati, Manatus (or, as some would have it, Trichechns latirostris), inhabits the rivers of Florida, Mexico, Central America and the West Indies, and


(From Murie.)

Front view of head of American Manati, showing the eyes, nostrils, and mouth. A, with the lobes of the upper lip divaricated; B, with the lip contracted.

measures from 9 to 13 feet in length. The body is somewhat lishlike, but depressed and ending posteriorly in a broad, flat, shovel like horizontal tail, with rounded edges. The head is of moderate size, oblong, with a blunt, truncated muzzle, and divided from the body by a slight constriction or neck. The fore limbs are flattened oval paddles, placed rather low on the sides of the body, and showing externally no signs of division into fingers, but with three diminutive flat nails near their extremities. No, traces of hind limbs are discernible either externally or internally; and there is no dorsal fin. The mouth is peculiar, the tumid upper lip being cleft in the middle line into two lobes, each of which is separately movable. The nostrils are two semi lunar valve-like slits at the apex of the muzzle. The eyes are very minute, placed at the sides of the head, and with a nearly circular aperture with wrinkled margins; and external ears are wanting. The skin generally is of a dark greyish colour, not smooth or glistening like that of whale or dolphin, but finely wrinkled. At a little distance it appears naked, but close inspection, at all events in young animals, shows a scanty covering of delicate hairs, and both upper and under lips are supplied with short, stiff bristles.,

Manatis have a number-as many as 20 pairs in each jaw-of two-ridged teeth, of which, however, but comparatively few are in use at once. They lack the large tusks of the male dugong, and the fore part of the skull is not so much bent down as in that animal. In life the palate has a horny plate, with a similar one in the lower jaw. The skeleton is described under SIRENIA. Manatis pass their life in the water, inhabiting bays, lagoons, estuaries and large rivers, but the open sea is unsuited to their peculiar mode of life. As a rule they prefer shallow water, in which, when not feeding, they lie near the bottom. In deeper water they often float, with the body much arched, the rounded