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manners of the Christians. In vain did the Emperor Leo the Ifaurian, and his son Constantinus Copronymus in the year 718, endeavour to put à stop to the ido latrous practice of image-worship; and, in order to abolish it effectually, ordered all images to be taken from the churches, Their exertions were violently opposed by the Bishops of Rome. Gregory II. confirmed the prevailing idolatry by the authority of a Synod, rejected the order of the Em. peror, absolved his fubjects from their allegiance, and even proceeded to excommunicate him; and he obtained a confirmation of the prevailing superstitions both in the East and in the West, by the decrees of general councils. Of this incorrigible wickedness we find notice given by the prediction of the woes which were to follow. .:
One wo is paft, behold there come two Woes more hereaftere. This mode of expression evidently shows that between the ceasing of the first wo and the beginning of the second there should be fome interval of time. With this intimation the event
ç Rey. ix. 12,
f Whitaker, p. 135,
exactly corresponded, since the power prefigured by the four angels bound in the Euphrates 8 did not invade the territories of the Roman Empire, nor torment the Christians, who were established in it, till some centuries had elapsed after the cessation of the ravages of the Saracens.
One of the tribes of the Turks indeed made an irruption into the Greek Empire, sooner than the time allotted for the advance of “ the Euphratean horsemen.” “ Twenty-five years after the death of Bafil, his successors, in the year 1050, were suddenly assaulted by an unknown race of Barbarians, who united the Scythian valour with the fanaticism of new profelytes, and the arts and riches of a powerful monarchy. The myriads of Turkish horsemen overfpread a frontier of six hundred miles, from Tauris to Arzeroum: and the blood of one hundred and thirty thousand Christians was a grateful sacrifice to the Arabian Prophet h.”. But the Prophets notice only that
8 The great river Euphrates, to whose banks they had been confined, descends from the mountains of Armenia, runs through the provinces of Chaldea and Babylon, and is the centre of the Turkish dominions.
Gibbon, c. 57.
particular nation, whose firmly established empire has lasted to the present day.
In the year 1055, Togrul Beg, Sultan of the Turks, after having subdued Chorazin and Persia, took possession of Bagdad, the capital of the Saracen Caliphs. His successors, Olub Anslam, and Melech Shah, conquered the regions of the Euphrates ; and after the death of Melech Shah, these conquests were broken into the kingdoms of Armenia, Mesopotamia, Syria, and Cappadocia, the capitals of which were Mizapharekin, Mosul, Aleppo, and Iconium, according to Sir I. Newton. Bishop Newton supposes these sultanies to take their names from the cities of Bagdad, Damafcus, Aleppo, and Iconium, at the periods they settled themselves there; but this difference does not affect the point in question. These four Sultans were for a considerable time “ bound,” or restrained from extending their conquests farther than the territories bordering on the Euphrates, by the croisades of the European Christians into the Holy Land, in the latter part of the eleventh, and in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. Religion probably forbad their molesting the Saracens during the G 4
attack of their Christian enemies. But when the Christians abandoned their conquests in Syria and Palestine, then “ the four angels in the river Euphrates were loosed.” Soliman Shah', the first chief and founder of the Othman race, was drowned in his attempt to pass the Euphrates, in his retreat from Jengis Chan : but Orto. grul, his third son, obtained leave of Aladin, Sultan of Iconium, to settle in the mountains of Armenia, with 400 of his
Turks. “ From thence they began their excursions ; and the other Turks associating with them, and following their standard, they gained several victories over the Tartars on one side, and over the Chriftians on the other. Ortogrul dying in 1288, Othman, or Osman, his son, fucceeded him in power and authority; and în 1299, as some say, with the consent of Aladin himself, he was proclaimed Sultan, and founded a new 'empire; and the people afterwards [a mixed multitude, the remains of the four sultanies] as well as the new empire, was called by his name.”
." In this manner, and at this particular
i Newton, vol. iii. p. 114.
time, the four angels were loosed to slay the third part of men, that is, to conquer and to overthrow the subjects of the Roman Empire. The Latin or Western Empire was broken to pieces under the first four trumpets; the Greek or Eastern Empire was cruelly hurt and tormented under the fifth trumpet ; and here under the fixth trumpet it is to be pain and utterly destroyed. Accordingly all Asia Minor, Syria, Palestine, Egypt, Thrace, Macedon, Greece, and all the countries which formerly belonged to the Greek or Eastern Emperors, the Othmans have conquered and fubjugated to their dominion. They first passed over into Europe, in the reign of Orchan their second emperor, in the year 1357. They took Constantinople in the reign of Mohammed their seventh emperor, in the year 1453; and in time all the remaining parts of the Greek Empire shared the fate of their capital city. The last of their conquests were Candia, or the antient Crete, in 1669, and Cameniec in 1672. For the execution of this great work, it is said that they were prepared for an hour, and a day, and a month, and a yeark.