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ANCIENT EGYPTIAN MUSIC                  17
He seems to be analogous to the Linus, (son of Apollo), of the Greeks; he died young, and the first song of the Egyptian music* was in his honor; it was a lament over his untimely end, the swift passing away, of Youth, Spring, etc. The song was sung unt" r various, guises, for Mane-ros, Linus, Adonis, etc., among ancient nations, and Herodotus was surprised at hearing it in Egypt. But in course of time the song itself, and not the king's s - was called Maneros, and gradually diffused its influence, (the warning of the passing away of Joy) through Egyptian social life; at their banquets a perfectly painted statue of a corpse was borne round and shown to each guest, and there was sung the following warning:
" Cast your eyes upon this corpse You will be like this after Death, Therefore drink and be merry now."t
The song also from being a mournful one, became in time joyous and lively,t Plutarch thinks that the words Maneros, became synony­mous with "Good Health." The fashion was after the conquest of Egypt, imitated in Rome.§ The ancient Egyptian music was really a twofold affair and is well symbolized in being ittributed by some to good, by others to evil gods ; for it was used in the religious services of the highest gods, (except, according to Strabo, in the services of Osiris, at Abydos) and on the other hand was degraded as a pastime for the lowest orders.
•Plutarch, of Isia and Osiris, t Herodotus, Hist. |'Plutarch ot Isis and Osiris. § Petronius.






E-Book - An Annotated Compendium of Old Time American Songs by James Alverson III