Genesis 8:12

Genesis 8:12

And he stayed yet other seven days
After the dove had returned:

and sent forth the dove;
the same dove again;

which returned not again unto him any more:
the earth being dry, it found rest for the sole of its feet, sufficient food to eat, and a proper place for its habitation; and liking to be at liberty, and in the open air, chose not to return to the ark, even though its mate was there: of those birds sent out, the Heathen writers make mention: Abydenus says F19, that Sisithrus, the same with Noah, sent out birds making an experiment to see whether the earth was emersed out of the water, which returned again to him; and after them he sent out others; and having done so three times, obtained what he wished for, since the birds returned with their wings full of clay or mud; and so Josephus


F20 says, the dove which brought the olive leaf was all over with clay or mud: and Plutarch F21 makes particular mention of the dove, and says that, according to the mythologists, a dove was let out of the ark; and that her going out was to Deucalion, (the same with Noah) a sign of fair weather, and her return of foul: and the story that Lucian F23 tells of a golden dove upon the head of a statue in the temple of Hierapolis, supposed to be Deucalion's, seems plainly to refer to this dove of Noah; for the report, he says, was, that this golden dove flew away twice in a year, at the commemoration there made of the flood, by pouring out abundance of water into a chasm or cleft of the earth, then not very large; and which, it was told him, was formerly a very great one, and swallowed up all the flood that drowned the world.

F19 Apud Euseb. Praepar. Evangel. l. 9. c. 12. p. 414, 415.
F20 Antiqu. l. 1. c. 3. p. 5.
F21 De Solert. Animal.
F23 De Dea Syria.