Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 35.djvu/804

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Of these sciences, medicine and astronomy were probably taught in the temple schools—certainly the former, for all physicians were priests. Engineering and mining were, in all probability, taught practically. Where or how mathematics was taught we do not know. It is, however, a curious fact that while we possess no other Egyptian text-books, we do possess text-books of medicine and mathematics. The great medical "Papyrus Ebers" is a collection of diagnoses and prescriptions calculated to assist the general practitioner as well as to instruct the student. A mathematical text-book has been published by Eisenlohr.

Such is as complete a sketch as can be given of Egyptian education. It is to be borne in mind that it was under control of the government, that it was thoroughly democratic, and that its fundamental principle was utility and its purpose to train scribes, priests, physicians, and officers for the state service, not to form scholars. It is significant in this connection that no mention is made of the education of girls. In the times of the new empire (1530 B.C. and after) we meet with workingmen who are able to read and write, and no doubt the merchants, mechanics, and farmers that composed the wealthy middle class were educated. It may be supposed that the government taught its master workmen to read and write, two accomplishments they needed to properly fulfill their functions; but where and how the merchants, mechanics, and farmers, if they were educated, got their education, we can not even conjecture. The state certainly did not educate them, since it could in its estimate derive no benefit from them, and the idea of popular education never occurred to the state.


BY the Bronze age. Dr. Oscar Montelius[1] understands that period in the earliest civilization of the Northern races when they made their weapons, tools, etc., of bronze. Besides that composition, they knew only of one metal, gold. The word bronze includes all combinations of copper with tin or zinc, but the usual composition of the articles of this age was ninety parts of copper to ten of tin.

It would be a mistake, however, to refer all antiquities of bronze to the Bronze age. Vessels, rings, buckles, needles, and the like, were still made of bronze after the end of this period, just as they are even in our own day, but generally of a somewhat

  1. "The Civilization of Sweden in Heathen Times," by Oscar Montelius, Ph.D., with maps and 205 illustrations (New York and London Macmillan & Co.), whence the materials for this article are derived.