Mirror of Literature,  5 (1825), 339–41.

History of Music. Antiquity of Music—The Music and Musical Instruments of the Egyptians, Israelites, &c.  [1/5]



Serial, Essay


Music, Discovery, Genius, Invention

    The author declines to speculate on the first origin of music, beginning the account with the ancient Egyptians. It is stated: 'Nothing is more beautiful than to conceive the energetic powers of the human mind in the early ages of the world, exploring the then undiscovered capabilities of nature, and directed to the exhaustless store by the finger of God in the form of accident—though where chance is the parent of discovery it is only men of genius who turn it to advantage' (340). The author places Hermes Trismegistus among such geniuses for his 'striking improvements' in music.

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