Page:Notes and Queries - Series 9 - Volume 10.djvu/343

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Jesus,' ii. 440). While to Israel Gehenna is a kind of purgatory, there is no deliverance in prospect either for the heathen or for im- penitent Jewish sinners. The same authority affirms that the school of Hillel taught that the Gentiles, with sinners of Israel, are tor- mented in Gehenna for twelve months, after which their bodies and souls are burnt up and scattered as dust under the feet of the righteous. Referring to the description of the Final Judgment as he finds it in the writings of the Rabbis, Dr. Edersheim says that, realistic as this description is, it

" is terribly surpassed by a passage in which the supposed pleas for mercy by the various nations are adduced and refuted, when, after an unseemly contention between God and the Gentiles equally shocking to good taste and blasphemous about the partiality that had been shown to Israel, the Gentiles would be consigned to punishment. All this in a manner revolting to all reverent feeling."

I know of no author who has adequately dealt with this interesting subject. Perhaps these notes may be of use to the querist.


It would take me too far were I to attempt to answer this query at large. I will say briefly that Win wood Reade could cite no respectable authorities to bolster up his ludi- crous, nay, malevolent assault upon the Jews. "Everlasting damnation" whatever it may mean for the rest of the world is meaning- less to Jewish minds, and is foreign to their theological teaching. The Scriptures are full of examples indicative of nobler emotions and saner attitudes. The spirit of tolerance is writ large over the ethics of the Hebrews, and none but detractors of them could dis- tort sundry irresponsible dicta in obscure corners of the Talmud into ghoulish delights in eternal torture of human beings professing non-Jewish tenets of belief. In short, the statement is worthless and absurd.


The Jews in early Christian times believed in the eternity of punishment. The writings of the Alexandrian Philo (born circa 20 B.C.) attest this fact. Thus in 'De Cherub.,' s. i., he says :

" He who is cast out by God must endure a never- ending punishment and must bear his sufferings

for evermore, and be flung into the place of the godless to endure unmixed and unremitting misery."

And in the Slavonic version of ' The Book of the Secrets of Enoch,' translated by Mr. W. R. Morfill, and edited in 1896 by Prof. Charles, the torment of the wicked in the third heaven is held to be everlasting (ch. xlii. 1), The latter assigns this very

peculiar book in its original form (probably Hebrew) to any year between A.D. 1 and 50. Also, as is well known, the Jewish Essenes. according to Josephus(' Wars,'ii. ll\ "allotted to bad souls a dark and tempestuous den, full of never-ceasing punishments (rt/itopiuJv aSiaAeiTTTtov)." Whatever may be the opinions of modern Jewish sects as to the so-called "larger hope," it is clear that those of earlier times were distinctly opposed to it.

J. B. McGovERN. St. Stephen's Rectory, C.-on-M., Manchester.

WESTMINSTER CHANGES (9 th S. x. 222, 263). MR. HARLAND-OXLEY, in his most interest- ing recollections of Westminster, apparently overlooks Brookes (or Brooks), the iron- monger, whose shop I well remember as an old-established one fifty years ago. It was situated upon what is now the Victoria Street side of Tothill Street, and at the corner of a narrow lane. It was still in existence look- ing pretty well the same as ever not many years ago. * HARRY HEMS.

Lannion, Brittany.

THE RED HAND OF IRELAND (9 th S. x. 247). Dr. Brewer in his ' Dictionary of Phrase and Fable' says that the Red Hand in the armorial coat of baronets arose thus: "James I. in 1611 created 200 baronets on the payment of 1,000. each, ostensibly 'for the amelioration of Ulster,' and from this connexion with Ulster they were allowed to place on their coat armour the 'open red hand,' up to that time borne by the O'Neiles. The O'Neile whose estates were made forfeit by King James was surnamed Lamb-derg Eirin (' red hand of Erin '). "

'The Red Hand of Ulster ' is the subject of a communication to 'N. & Q.,' 2 nd S. i. 226, in which the writer attributes the superstition to the misdeeds of Thomas, Lord Lyttelton. Another instance of the absurd belief is related of the Holts, baronets of Aston, near Birmingham. The church windows have been painted with the bloody hand, minus one finger. It is believed that each generation is allowed to take one finger off until all are removed, when the hand in the family arms might be dispensed with altogether.


71, Brecknock Road.

LUDGERSALL (9 th S. x. 209). This townlet, which is indebted to the recent operations of the War Office on Salisbury Plain for giving it a shade of its former importance after a lethargy of centuries, is mentioned in Domesday Book under a widely differing name, "Ipse Edwardus tenet Littlegarselle,"