Uarda : a Romance of Ancient Egypt - Complete

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9781406952322: Uarda : a Romance of Ancient Egypt - Complete

Excerpt: ...his astonished hearers that in the breast of the deceased prophet Rui, a ram's heart, instead of a man's, had been found, and desired them all to follow his instructions. Each one, he said, was to fall on his knees and pray, while he would carry the heart into the holiest of holies, and enquire of the Gods what this wonder might portend to the faithful. Ameni, with the heart in his hand, placed himself at the head of the procession, and disappeared behind the veil of the sanctuary, the initiated prayed in the vestibule, in front of it; the priests and scholars in the vast court, which was closed on the west by the stately colonnade and the main gateway to the temple. For fully an hour Ameni remained in the silent holy of holies, from which thick clouds of incense rolled out, and then he reappeared with a golden vase set with precious stones. His tall figure was now resplendent with rich ornaments, and a priest, who walked before him, held the vessel high above his head. Ameni's eyes seemed spell-bound to the vase, and he followed it, supporting himself by his crozier, with humble inflections. The initiated bowed their heads till they touched the pavement, and the priests and scholars bent their faces down to the earth, when they beheld their haughty master so filled with humility and devotion. The worshippers did not raise themselves till Ameni had reached the middle of the court and ascended the steps of the altar, on which the vase with the heart was now placed, and they listened to the slow and solemn accents of the high-priest which sounded clearly through the whole court. "Fall down again and worship! wonder, pray, and adore! The noble inspector of sacrifices of the temple of Anion has not been deceived in his judgment; a ram's heart was in fact found in the pious breast of Rui. I heard distinctly the voice of the Divinity in the sanctuary, and strange indeed was the speech that met my ear. Wolves tore the sacred ram of Anion in his sanctuary...

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