(5) Why did God give the measures of the ark in the following manner; the length to be of three hundred cubits, and the breadth thereof to be fifty cubits, and the height to be thirty cubits: and above it was to be raised to a point in one cubit, being brought together gradually like an obelisk? (#Ge 6:15). It was necessary that so vast a work should be constructed in conformity with literal directions, in order that so many animals, some of them of vast size, should be received into it, as individuals of each class were introduced with the food necessary for them; but if the matter is considered properly with reference to its symbolical meaning, then, for the comprehension of the formation of our body, we shall require to make use not of the quantity of cubits, but of the certain principles and proportions which are observed in them. But the proportions which are contained in them are of sixfold, and double, and other portions are added. For three hundred is six times as many as fifty, and ten times as many as thirty; and again fifty is by two thirds a larger number than thirty. Such then are also the proportions of the body; for if any one should choose to investigate the matter and inquire into it carefully in all its points, he will find that man is made in an exact proportion of measurement, neither being too long or too little; and if a string be let down from his head to his feet, he will find that to reach that distance it requires a string six times as long as the width of his chest, and ten times as long as the depth of his ribs and their breadth as a second part of depth added thereto. Such is the certain proportion, received in accordance with nature, of the human body formed on exact measurement of the most excellently made men, who are incorrect neither in the way of excess nor of defect. But again, it was with great wisdom and propriety that God ordained the summit to be completed in one cubit; for the upper part of the ark imitates the unity of the body; the head being forsooth as the citadel of the king, having for its inhabitant the chief of all, the intellect. But those parts which are below the head are divided into separate portions, as for instance into the hands, and in an especial degree into the lower parts, since the thighs, and legs, and feet are all kept distinct from one another, therefore whoever should wish to understand these matters, on the principle which I have pointed out, will easily comprehend the analogy of the cubits as I have related it. But above all things he must not be ignorant that each of these different numbers of cubits has separately a certain necessary proportion and principle, beginning with the first, those in the length of the ark. Therefore in its length it is composed of three hundred units, placed next to one another in continuation, according to the augmentation of units, from these twenty-four numbers, one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, ten, eleven, twelve, thirteen, fourteen, fifteen, sixteen, seventeen, eighteen, nineteen, twenty, twentyone, twenty-two, twenty-three, twenty-four. But the twenty-fourth number is above all others a natural number, being distributed among the hours of day and night, and also among the characters of language, {2}{he is referring to the Greek alphabet, which consists of twenty-four letters.} and literal speech; and it is also compounded of three cubes, being complete, full, and compacted in equality. For the number three constantly exhibits, as belonging to itself, the first equality of all, having a beginning, and a middle, and an end, all of which are equal to one another; and eight is the first cube, because it again has declared its first equality with the rest. But the number twenty-four has likewise a great number of other virtues, since it is the substance of the number three hundred, as has been already pointed out; this then is its first virtue; and it has another, since it is compounded of twelve quadrangular figures, joined to one another by a continuous unity; and besides of two long figures, and twelve double figures, being forsooth compounded of twos separately increased by two and two. Therefore the angular numbers which make up together the twelve quadrangular figures are these; one, three, five, seven, nine, eleven, thirteen, fifteen, seventeen, nineteen, twenty-one, and twenty-three; but the quadrangular figure combines the following numbers, one, four, nine, sixteen, twenty-five, thirty-six, forty-nine, sixty-four, eighty-one, a hundred, a hundred and twenty-one, and a hundred and twenty-four. But those angular numbers which compose the other long figures are these; one, four, six, eight, ten twelve, fourteen, sixteen, eighteen, twenty, twenty-two, twenty-four, being twelve in all; and after these come the compound numbers, two, six, twelve, twenty, thirty, forty-two, fifty-six, seventytwo, ninety, a hundred and ten, a hundred and thirty-two, and a hundred and fifty-six; being also twelve. And if you put together the twelve quadrangular figures, you will find a hundred and forty-four, and if you add the other twelve long figures, you will find a hundred and fifty-six; and from the combination of the two you will get the number three hundred, and the concord of full, and complete, and perfect nature rising up to the equal and infinite harmony; for a complete and perfect nature is the maker of equality, according to the nature of a triangle; but the equal and the infinite are the factors of inequality, according to the composition of the other long figure. But the universe consists of a combination of equality and inequality, on which account the Creator himself, even amid the destruction of all earthly things, placed a sort of fixed pattern of stability in the ark. This then is enough to say about the number three hundred. We must now proceed to speak of the fifty cubits, on the following principle; for in the first place it is composed of the right angle of the quadrangular figures; for a right angle is compounded of three, four, and five; and the square of these is nine, sixteen, and twenty-five, the sum total of which when added together is fifty; in the second place, the perfect number fifty is composed of these four triangles linked together, one, three, six, ten; and again of these four equal quadrangles also united together, one, four, nine, sixteen; therefore these triangles when collected together make twenty; and the quadrangles make thirty; and twenty and thirty added together make fifty. But if the triangle and the quadrangle are added together, they make a heptangular figure: so that it is contained by its virtue in the number of fifty, that divine and holy number; to which the prophet had regard when he proclaimed the jubilee festival; and the whole of the jubilee year is free and a deliverer. The third theorem is three triangles beginning with the unit, connected together in a continuous series, and three cubes beginning also with the unit, and connected together in a similar manner, which together make fifty; the examples of the first are one, four, and nine, which make fourteen; the examples of the second are, one, eight, and twentyseven, which together make thirty-six; and the sum total of the two when added together is fifty. Again, thirty is in an especial manner a natural number, for as in the series of units the number three is, so is the number thirty in the series of decimals; and that makes up the cycle of the moon, being the collection of separate months in full delineation; secondly, it is composed of four numbers, which are united in the continual series of these quadrangular figures, one, four, nine, and sixteen, which together make up thirty; on which account it was not without some foundation and sufficient reason that Heraclitus called that number “generation,” when he said: a man in thirty years from the time of his birth can become a grandfather, inasmuch as he arrives at the age of puberty in his fourteenth year, at which age he is capable of becoming a father; and at the end of the year his offspring arrives at the birth, and again in fifteen years more begets another offspring like himself; and out of these names of grandfathers, fathers, and sons, as also out of the names of grandmothers, mothers, and daughters, a generation complete in its offspring is produced.

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