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This historic book may have numerous typos and missing text. Purchasers can usually download a free scanned copy of the original book (without typos) from the publisher. Not indexed. Not illustrated. 1884 edition. Excerpt: ... HE Greeks applied the name and term of Hermes A Mercurius Trismegistus, so significant and suggestive, certainly to the Egyptian Thoth, as early as the fourth century, B.C. He was believed to be the origin of everything formed or produced by the human mind. He was, therefore, esteemed as the inventor of all the arts and sciences. He was the contriver of the hieroglyphics. Of these there were various kinds. There was a profound system of hieroglyphical rendering, adopted among the Egyptians, the true meaning of which was only known to the higher ranks of the priests. There were other systems of representation by marks or figures which were less reserved, and some of these mysterious signs were fitted, or adapted, for the comprehension of the multitude. Hermes was the prolific and versatile interpreter between nature and man; the repository from which issued all the application of the methods of explaining the phenomena of nature and their uses, perceived by the human mind. In his hands, and through his means, lay the demonstration of the conclusions of reason. The epithet, Trismegistus (orpt DEGREESfyKTroc, or "superlatively" greatest), as applied to Hermes, is of comparatively late origin, and cannot be traced to any author earlier than the second Christian century. Most probably, it arose out of the earlier forms derived by the Greeks from pristine Egyptian sources. But various other explanations of the appellation have been offered, such as that of the author of the "Chronicon Alexandrinum" (47 A.d.), who maintains that it was because Hermes, while maintaining the unity of God, had also asserted the existence of three supreme or greatest powers, that he was called by the Egyptians Trismegistus. This view, which is also adopted by Sui
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