Part 4 out of 8
customs of a nation. And I recollect perfectly well that Governor Clarke
told me, before I started for this place, that I would find the Mandans
a strange people and half white.
"Among the females may be seen every shade and color of hair that can be
seen in our own country except red or auburn, which is not to be found.
. . . There are very many of both sexes, and of every age, from infancy
to manhood and old age, with hair of a bright silvery-gray, and in some
instances almost perfectly white. This unaccountable phenomenon is not
the result of disease or habit, but it is unquestionably an hereditary
characteristic which runs in families, and indicates no inequality in
disposition or intellect. And by passing this hair through my hands I
have found it uniformly to be as coarse and harsh as a horse's mane,
differing materially from the hair of other colors, which, among the
Mandans, is generally as fine and soft as silk.
"The stature of the Mandans is rather below the ordinary size of man,
with beautiful symmetry of form and proportion, and wonderful suppleness
Catlin gives a group (54) showing this great diversity in complexion:
one of the figures is painted almost pure white, and with light hair.
The faces are European.
GOVERNOR AND OTHER INDIANS OF THE PUEBLO OF SAN DOMINGO, NEW MEXICO.
Major James W. Lynd, who lived among the Dakota Indians for nine years,
and was killed by them in the great outbreak of 1862, says (MS. "Hist.
of Dakotas," Library, Historical Society, Minnesota, p. 47), after
calling attention to the fact that the different tribes of the Sioux
nation represent several different degrees of darkness of color:
"The Dakota child is of lighter complexion than the young brave; this
one lighter than the middle-aged man, and the middle-aged man lighter
than the superannuated homo, who, by smoke, paint, dirt, and a drying up
of the vital juices, appears to be the true copper-colored Dakota. The
color of the Dakotas varies with the nation, and also with the age and
condition of the individual. It may be set down, however, as a shade
lighter than olive; yet it becomes still lighter by change of condition
or mode of life, and nearly vanishes, even in the child, under constant
ablutions and avoiding of exposure. Those children in the Mission at
Hazlewood, who are taken very young, and not allowed to expose
themselves, lose almost entirely the olive shade, and become quite as
white as the American child. The Mandans are as light as the peasants of
Spain, while their brothers, the Crows, are as dark as the Arabs. Dr.
Goodrich, in the 'Universal Traveller,' p. 154, says that the modern
Peruvians, in the warmer regions of Peru, are as fair as the people of
the south of Europe."
The Aymaras, the ancient inhabitants of the mountains of Peru and
Bolivia, are described as having an olive-brown complexion, with regular
features, large heads, and a thoughtful and melancholy cast of
countenance. They practised in early times the deformation of the skull.
Professor Wilson describes the hair of the ancient Peruvians, as found
upon their mummies, as "a lightish brown, and of a fineness of texture
which equals that of the Anglo-Saxon race." "The ancient Peruvians,"
says Short ("North Americans of Antiquity," p. 187), "appear, from
numerous examples of hair found in their tombs, to have been an
auburn-haired race." Garcilasso, who had an opportunity of seeing the
body of the king, Viracocha, describes the hair of that monarch as
snow-white. Haywood tells us of the discovery, at the beginning of this
century, of three mummies in a cave on the south side of the Cumberland
River (Tennessee), who were buried in baskets, as the Peruvians were
occasionally buried, and whose skin was fair and white, and their hair
auburn, and of a fine texture. ("Natural and Aboriginal History of
Tennessee," p. 191.)
Neither is the common opinion correct which asserts all the American
Indians to be of the same type of features. The portraits on this page
and on pages 187 and 191, taken from the "Report of the U. S. Survey for
a Route for a Pacific Railroad," present features very much like those
of Europeans; in fact, every face here could be precisely matched among
the inhabitants of the southern part of the old continent.
On the other hand, look at the portrait of the great Italian orator and
reformer, Savonarola, on page 193. It looks more like the hunting
Indians of North-western America than any of the preceding faces. In
fact, if it was dressed with a scalp-lock it would pass muster anywhere
as a portrait of the "Man-afraid-of-his-horses," or "Sitting Bull."
Adam was, it appears, a red man. Winchell tells us that Adam is derived
from the red earth. The radical letters �D�M are found in ADaMaH,
"something out of which vegetation was made to germinate," to wit, the
earth. �D�M and �DOM signifies red, ruddy, bay-colored, as of a horse,
the color of a red heifer. "�D�M, a man, a human being, male or female,
red, ruddy." ("Preadamites," p.161.)
"The Arabs distinguished mankind into two races, one red, ruddy, the
other black." (Ibid.) They classed themselves among the red men.
Not only was Adam a red man, but there is evidence that, from the
highest antiquity, red was a sacred color; the gods of the ancients were
always painted red. The Wisdom of Solomon refers to this custom: "The
carpenter carved it elegantly, and formed it by the skill of his
understanding, and fashioned it to the shape of a man, or made it like
some vile beast, laying it over with vermilion, and with paint, coloring
it red, and covering every spot therein."
The idols of the Indians were also painted red, and red was the
religious color. (Lynd's MS. "Hist. of Dakotas," Library, Hist. Society,
The Cushites and Ethiopians, early branches of the Atlantean stock, took
their name from their "sunburnt" complexion; they were red men.
The name of the Ph�nicians signified red. Himyar, the prefix of the
Himyaritic Arabians, also means red, and the Arabs were painted red on
the Egyptian monuments.
The ancient Egyptians were red men. They recognized four races of
men--the red, yellow, black, and white men. They themselves belonged to
the "Rot," or red men; the yellow men they called "Namu"--it included
the Asiatic races; the black men were called "Nahsu," and the white men
"Tamhu." The following figures are copied from Nott and Gliddon's "Types
of Mankind," p. 85, and were taken by them from the great works of
Belzoni, Champollion, and Lepsius.
In later ages so desirous were the Egyptians of preserving, the
aristocratic distinction of the color of their skin, that they
represented themselves on the monuments as of a crimson hue--an
exaggeration of their original race complexion.
In the same way we find that the ancient Aryan writings divided mankind
into four races--the white, red, yellow, and black: the four castes of
India were founded upon these distinctions in color; in fact, the word
for color in Sanscrit (varna) means caste. The red men, according to the
Mah�bh�rata, were the Kshatriyas--the warrior caste-who were afterward
engaged in a fierce contest with the whites--the Brahmans--and were
nearly exterminated, although some of them survived, and from their
stock Buddha was born. So that not only the Mohammedan and Christian but
the Buddhistic religion seem to be derived from branches of the Hamitic
or red stock. The great Manu was also of the red race.
THE RACES OF MEN ACCORDING TO THE EGYPTIANS.
The Egyptians, while they painted themselves red-brown, represented the
nations of Palestine as yellow-brown, and the Libyans yellow-white. The
present inhabitants of Egypt range from a yellow color in the north
parts to a deep bronze. Tylor is of opinion ("Anthropology," p. 95) that
the ancient Egyptians belonged to a brown race, which embraced the
Nubian tribes and, to some extent, the Berbers of Algiers and Tunis. He
groups the Assyrians, Ph�nicians, Persians, Greeks, Romans, Andalusians,
Bretons, dark Welshmen, and people of the Caucasus into one body, and
designates them as "dark whites." The Himyarite Arabs, as I have shown,
derived their name originally from their red color, and they were
constantly depicted on the Egyptian monuments as red or light brown.
Herodotus tells us that there was a nation of Libyans, called the
Maxyans, who claimed descent from the people of Troy (the walls of Troy,
we shall see, were built by Poseidon; that is to say, Troy was an
Atlantean colony). These Maxyans painted their whole bodies red. The
Zavecians, the ancestors of the Zuavas of Algiers (the tribe that gave
their name to the French Zouaves), also painted themselves red. Some of
the Ethiopians were "copper-colored." ("'Amer. Cyclop.," art. Egypt, p.
464.) Tylor says ("Anthropology," p. 160): "The language of the ancient
Egyptians, though it cannot be classed in the Semitic family with
Hebrew, has important points of correspondence, whether due to the long
intercourse between the two races in Egypt or to some deeper ancestral
connection; and such analogies also appear in the Berber languages of
These last were called by the ancients the Atlanteans.
"If a congregation of twelve representatives from Malacca, China, Japan,
Mongolia, Sandwich Islands, Chili, Peru, Brazil, Chickasaws, Comanches,
etc., were dressed alike, or undressed and unshaven, the most skilful
anatomist could not, from their appearance, separate them." (Fontaine's
"How the World was Peopled," pp. 147, 244.)
Ferdinand Columbus, in his relation of his father's voyages, compares
the inhabitants of Guanaani to the Canary Islanders (an Atlantean race),
and describes the inhabitants of San Domingo as still more beautiful and
fair. In Peru the Charanzanis, studied by M. Angraud, also resemble the
Canary Islanders. L'Abb� Brasseur de Bourbourg imagined himself
surrounded by Arabs when all his Indians of Rabinal were around him; for
they had, he said, their complexion, features, and beard. Pierre Martyr
speaks of the Indians of the Parian Gulf as having fair hair. ("The
Human Species," p. 201.) The same author believes that tribes belonging
to the Semitic type are also found in America. He refers to "certain
traditions of Guiana, and the use in the country of a weapon entirely
characteristic of the ancient Canary Islanders."
When science is able to disabuse itself of the Mortonian theory that the
aborigines of America are all red men, and all belong to one race, we
may hope that the confluence upon the continent of widely different
races from different countries may come to be recognized and
intelligently studied. There can be no doubt that red, white, black, and
yellow men have united to form the original population of America. And
there can be as little doubt that the entire population of Europe and
the south shore of the Mediterranean is a mongrel race--a combination,
in varying proportions, of a dark-brown or red race with a white race;
the characteristics of the different nations depending upon the
proportions in which the dark and light races are mingled, for peculiar
mental and moral characteristics go with these complexions. The
red-haired people are a distinct variety of the white stock; there were
once whole tribes and nations with this color of hair; their blood is
now intermingled with all the races of men, from Palestine to Iceland.
Everything in Europe speaks of vast periods of time and long. continued
and constant interfusion of bloods, until there is not a fair-skinned
man on the Continent that has not the blood of the dark-haired race in
his veins; nor scarcely a dark-skinned man that is not lighter in hue
from intermixture with the white stock.
GENESIS CONTAINS A HISTORY OF ATLANTIS
The Hebrews are a branch of the great family of which that powerful
commercial race, the Ph�nicians, who were the merchants of the world
fifteen hundred years before the time of Christ, were a part. The
Hebrews carried out from the common storehouse of their race a mass of
traditions, many of which have come down-to us in that oldest and most
venerable of human compositions, the Book of Genesis. I have shown that
the story of the Deluge plainly refers to the destruction of Atlantis,
and that it agrees in many important particulars with the account given
by Plato. The people destroyed were, in both instances, the ancient race
that had created civilization; they had formerly been in a happy and
sinless condition; they had become great and wicked; they were destroyed
for their sins--they were destroyed by water.
But we can go farther, and it can be asserted that there is scarcely a
prominent fact in the opening chapters of the Book of Genesis that
cannot be duplicated from the legends of the American nations, and
scarcely a custom known to the Jews that does not find its counterpart
among the people of the New World.
Even in the history of the Creation we find these similarities:
The Bible tells us (Gen. i., 2) that in the beginning the earth was
without form and void, and covered with water. In the Quiche legends we
are told, "at first all was sea--no man, animal, bird, or green
herb--there was nothing to be seen but the sea and the heavens."
The Bible says (Gen. i., 2), "And the Spirit of God moved upon the face
of the waters." The Quiche legend says, "The Creator--the Former, the
Dominator--the feathered serpent--those that give life, moved upon the
waters like a glowing light."
The Bible says (Gen. i., 9), "And God said, Let the waters under the
heaven be gathered together unto one place, and let the dry land appear:
and it was so." The Quiche legend says, "The creative spirits cried out
'Earth!' and in an instant it was formed, and rose like a vapor-cloud;
immediately the plains and the mountains arose, and the cypress and pine
The Bible tells us, "And God saw that it was good." The Quiche legend
says, "Then Gucumatz was filled with joy, and cried out, 'Blessed be thy
coming, O Heart of Heaven, Hurakan, thunder-bolt.'"
The order in which the vegetables, animals, and man were formed is the
same in both records.
In Genesis (chap. ii., 7) we are told, "And the Lord God formed man of
the dust of the ground." The Quiche legend says. "The first man was made
of clay; but he had no intelligence, and was consumed in the water."
In Genesis the first man is represented as naked. The Aztec legend says,
"The sun was much nearer the earth then than now, and his grateful
warmth rendered clothing unnecessary."
Even the temptation of Eve reappears in the American legends. Lord
Kingsborough says: "The Toltecs had paintings of a garden, with a single
tree standing in the midst; round the root of the tree is entwined a
serpent, whose head appearing above the foliage displays the face of a
woman. Torquemada admits the existence of this tradition among them, and
agrees with the Indian historians, who affirm that this was the first
woman in the world, who bore children, and from whom all mankind are
descended." ("Mexican Antiquities," vol. viii., p. 19.) There is also a
legend of Suchiquecal, who disobediently gathered roses from a tree, and
thereby disgraced and injured herself and all her posterity. ("Mexican
Antiquities," vol. vi., p. 401.)
The legends of the Old World which underlie Genesis, and were used by
Milton in the "Paradise Lost," appear in the Mexican legends of a war of
angels in heaven, and the fall of Zou-tem-que (Soutem, Satan--Arabic,
Shatana?) and the other rebellious spirits.
We have seen that the Central Americans possessed striking parallels to
the account of the Deluge in Genesis.
There is also a clearly established legend which singularly resembles
the Bible record of the Tower of Babel.
Father Duran, in his MS. "Historia Antiqua de la Nueva Espana," A.D.
1585, quotes from the lips of a native of Cholula, over one hundred
years old, a version of the legend as to the building of the great
pyramid of Cholula. It is as follows:
"In the beginning, before the light of the sun had been created, this
land (Cholula) was in obscurity and darkness, and void of any created
thing; all was a plain, without hill or elevation, encircled in every
part by water, without tree or created thing; and immediately after the
light and the sun arose in the east there appeared gigantic men of
deformed stature and possessed the land, and desiring to see the
nativity of the sun, as well as his occident, proposed to go and seek
them. Dividing themselves into two parties, some journeyed to the west
and others toward the east; these travelled; until the sea cut off their
road, whereupon they determined to return to the place from which they
started, and arriving at this place (Cholula), not finding the means of
reaching the sun, enamored of his light and beauty, they determined to
build a tower so high that its summit should reach the sky. Having
collected materials for the purpose, they found a very adhesive clay and
bitumen, with which they speedily commenced to build the tower; and
having reared it to the greatest possible altitude, so that they say it
reached to the sky, the Lord of the Heavens, enraged, said to the
inhabitants of the sky, 'Have you observed how they of the earth have
built a high and haughty tower to mount hither, being enamored of the
light of the sun and his beauty? Come and confound them, because it is
not right that they of the earth, living in the flesh, should mingle
with us.' Immediately the inhabitants of the sky sallied forth like
flashes of lightning; they destroyed the edifice, and divided and
scattered its builders to all parts of the earth."
RUINS OF THE TEMPLE OF CHOLULA.
One can recognize in this legend the recollection, by a ruder race, of a
highly civilized people; for only a highly civilized people would have
attempted such a vast work. Their mental superiority and command of the
arts gave them the character of giants who arrived from the East; who
had divided into two great emigrations, one moving eastward (toward
Europe), the other westward (toward America). They were sun-worshippers;
for we are told "they were enamored of the light and beauty of the sun,"
and they built a high place for his worship.
The pyramid of Cholula is one of the greatest constructions ever erected
by human hands. It is even now, in its ruined condition, 160 feet high,
1400 feet square at the base, and covers forty-five acres; we have only
to remember that the greatest pyramid of Egypt, Cheops, covers but
twelve or thirteen acres, to form some conception of the magnitude of
this American structure.
It must not be forgotten that this legend was taken down by a Catholic
priest, shortly after the conquest of Mexico, from the lips of an old
Indian who was born before Columbus sailed from Spain.
Observe the resemblances between this legend and the Bible account of
the building of the Tower of Babel:
"All was a plain without hill or elevation," says the Indian legend.
"They found a plain in the land of Shinar, and they dwelt there," says
the Bible. They built of brick in both cases. "Let us build us a tower
whose top may reach unto heaven," says the Bible. "They determined to
build a tower so high that its summit should reach the sky," says the
Indian legend. "And the Lord came down to see the city and the tower
which the children of men had builded. And the Lord said, Behold . . .
nothing will be restrained from them which they have imagined to do. Go
to, let us go down and confound them," says the Bible record. "The Lord
of the Heavens, enraged, said to the inhabitants of the sky, 'Have you
observed,' etc. Come and confound them," says the Indian record. "And
the Lord scattered them abroad from thence on all the face of the
earth," says the Bible. "They scattered its builders to all parts of the
earth," says the Mexican legend.
Can any one doubt that these two legends must have sprung in some way
from one another, or from some common source? There are enough points of
difference to show that the American is not a servile copy of the Hebrew
legend. In the former the story comes from a native of Cholula: it is
told under the shadow of the mighty pyramid it commemorates; it is a
local legend which he repeats. The men who built it, according to his
account, were foreigners. They built it to reach the sun--that is to
say, as a sun-temple; while in the Bible record Babel was built to
perpetuate the glory of its architects. In the Indian legend the gods
stop the work by a great storm, in the Bible account by confounding the
speech of the people.
Both legends were probably derived from Atlantis, and referred to some
gigantic structure of great height built by that people; and when the
story emigrated to the east and west, it was in the one case affixed to
the tower of the Chaldeans, and in the other to the pyramid of Cholula,
precisely as we find the ark of the Deluge resting upon separate
mountain-chains all the way from Greece to Armenia. In one form of the
Tower of Babel legend, that of the Toltecs, we are told that the pyramid
of Cholula was erected "as a means of escape from a second flood, should
But the resemblances between Genesis and the American legends do not
We are told (Gen. ii., 21) that "the Lord God caused a deep sleep to
fall upon Adam," and while he slept God made Eve out of one of his ribs.
According to the Quiche tradition, there were four men from whom the
races of the world descended (probably a recollection of the red, black,
yellow, and white races); and these men were without wives, and the
Creator made wives for them "while they slept."
Some wicked misanthrope referred to these traditions when he said, "And
man's first sleep became his last repose."
In Genesis (chap. iii., 22), "And the Lord God said, Behold, the man is
become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth
his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live forever:"
therefore God drove him out of the garden. In the Quiche legends we are
told, "The gods feared that they had made men too perfect, and they
breathed a cloud of mist over their vision."
When the ancestors of the Quiches migrated to America the Divinity
parted the sea for their passage, as the Red Sea was parted for the
The story of Samson is paralleled in the history of a hero named
Zipanca, told of in the "Popol Vuh," who, being captured by his enemies
and placed in a pit, pulled down the building in which his captors had
assembled, and killed four hundred of them.
"There were giants in those days," says the Bible. A great deal of the
Central American history is taken up with the doings of an ancient race
of giants called Quinames.
This parallelism runs through a hundred particulars:
Both the Jews and Mexicans worshipped toward the east.
Both called the south "the right hand of the world."
Both burnt incense toward the four corners of the earth.
Confession of sin and sacrifice of atonement were common to both peoples.
Both were punctilious about washings and ablutions.
Both believed in devils, and both were afflicted with leprosy.
Both considered women who died in childbirth as worthy of honor as
soldiers who fell in battle.
Both punished adultery with stoning to death.
As David leaped and danced before the ark of the Lord, so did the
Mexican monarchs before their idols.
Both had an ark, the abiding-place of an invisible god.
Both had a species of serpent-worship.
GREAT SERPENT MOUND, OHIO.
Compare our representation of the great serpent-mound in Adams County,
Ohio, with the following description of a great serpent-mound in
"Serpent-worship in the West.--Some additional light appears to have
been thrown upon ancient serpent-worship in the West by the recent
archaeological explorations of Mr. John S. Phen�, F.G.S., F.R.G.S., in
Scotland. Mr. Phen� has just investigated a curious earthen mound in
Glen Feechan, Argyleshire, referred to by him, at the late meeting of
the British Association in Edinburgh, as being in the form of a serpent
or saurian. The mound, says the Scotsman, is a most perfect one. The
head is a large cairn, and the body of the earthen reptile 300 feet
long; and in the centre of the bead there were evidences, when Mr. Phen�
first visited it, of an altar having been placed there. The position
with regard to Ben Cruachan is most remarkable. The three peaks are seen
over the length of the reptile when a person is standing on the head, or
cairn. The shape can only be seen so as to be understood when looked
down upon from an elevation, as the outline cannot be understood unless
the whole of it can be seen. This is most perfect when the spectator is
on the bead of the animal form, or on the lofty rock to the west of it.
This mound corresponds almost entirely with one 700 feet long in
America, an account of which was lately published, after careful survey,
by Mr. Squier. The altar toward the head in each case agrees. In the
American mound three rivers (also objects of worship with the ancients)
were evidently identified. The number three was a sacred number in all
ancient mythologies. The sinuous winding and articulations of the
vertebral spinal arrangement are anatomically perfect in the Argyleshire
mound. The gentlemen present with Mr. Phen� during his investigation
state that beneath the cairn forming the head of the animal was found a
megalithic chamber, in which was a quantity of charcoal and burnt earth
and charred nutshells, a flint instrument, beautifully and minutely
serrated at the edge, and burnt bones. The back or spine of the serpent,
which, as already stated, is 300 feet long, was found, beneath the peat
moss, to be formed by a careful adjustment of stones, the formation of
which probably prevented the structure from being obliterated by time
and weather." (Pall Mall Gazette.)
STONE IMPLEMENTS OF EUROPE AND AMERICA
We find a striking likeness between the works of the Stone Age in
America and Europe, as shown in the figures here given.
The same singular custom which is found among the Jews and the Hindoos,
for "a man to raise up seed for his deceased brother by marrying his
widow," was found among the Central American nations. (Las Casas, MS.
"Hist. Apoloq.," cap. ccxiii., ccxv. Torquemada, "Monarq. Ind.," tom.
No one but the Jewish high-priest might enter the Holy of Holies. A
similar custom obtained in Peru. Both ate the flesh of the sacrifices of
atonement; both poured the blood of the sacrifice on the earth; they
sprinkled it, they marked persons with it, they smeared it upon walls
and stones. The Mexican temple, like the Jewish, faced the east. "As
among the Jews the ark was a sort of portable temple, in which the Deity
was supposed to be continually present, so among the Mexicans, the
Cherokees, and the Indians of Michoacan and Honduras, an ark was held in
the highest veneration, and was considered an object too sacred to be
touched by any but the priests." (Kingsborough, "Mex. Antiq., "vol.
The Peruvians believed that the rainbow was a sign that the earth would
not be again destroyed by a deluge. (Ibid., p. 25.)
The Jewish custom of laying the sins of the people upon the head of an
animal, and turning him out into the wilderness, had its counterpart
among the Mexicans, who, to cure a fever, formed a dog of maize paste
and left it by the roadside, saying the first passer-by would carry away
the illness. (Dorman, "Prim. Super.," p. 59.) Jacob's ladder had its
duplicate in the vine or tree of the Ojibbeways, which led from the
earth to heaven, up and down which the spirits passed. (Ibid., p. 67.)
Both Jews and Mexicans offered water to a stranger that be might wash
his feet; both ate dust in token of humility; both anointed with oil;
both sacrificed prisoners; both periodically separated the women, and
both agreed in the strong and universal idea of uncleanness connected
with that period.
Both believed in the occult power of water, and both practised baptism.
"Then the Mexican midwife gave the child to taste of the water, putting
her moistened fingers in its mouth, and said, 'Take this; by this thou
hast to live on the earth, to grow and to flourish; through this we get
all things that support existence on the earth; receive it.' Then with
moistened fingers she touched the breast of the child, and said, 'Behold
the pure water that washes and cleanses thy heart, that removes all
filthiness; receive it: may the goddess see good to purify And cleanse
thine heart.' Then the midwife poured water upon the head of the child,
saying, 'O my grandson--my son--take this water of the Lord of the
world, which is thy life, invigorating and refreshing, washing and
cleansing. I pray that this celestial water, blue and light blue, may
enter into thy body, and there live; I pray that it may destroy in thee
and put away from thee all the things evil and adverse that were given
thee before the beginning of the world. . . . Wheresoever thou art in
this child, O thou hurtful thing, begone! leave it, put thyself apart;
for now does it live anew, and anew is it born; now again is it purified
and cleansed; now again is it shaped and engendered by our mother, the
goddess of water." (Bancroft's "Native Races," vol. iii., p. 372.)
Here we find many resemblances to the Christian ordinance of baptism:
the pouring of the water on the head, the putting of the fingers in the
mouth, the touching of the breast, the new birth, and the washing away
of the original sin. The Christian rite, we know, was not a Christian
invention, but was borrowed from ancient times, from the great
storehouse of Asiatic traditions and beliefs.
The Mexicans hung up the heads of their sacrificed enemies; this was
also a Jewish custom:
"And the Lord said unto Moses, Take all the heads of the people, and
hang them up before the Lord against the sun, that the fierce anger of
the Lord may be turned away from Israel. And Moses said unto the judges
of Israel, Slay ye every one his men that were joined unto Baal-peor."
(Numb., xxv., 4, 5.)
The Scythians, Herodotus tells us, scalped their enemies, and carried
the scalp at the pommel of their saddles; the Jews probably scalped
"But God shall wound the head of his enemies, and the hairy scalp of
such a one as goeth on still in his trespasses." (Psa., lxviii., 21.)
The ancient Scandinavians practised scalping. When Harold Harefoot
seized his rival, Alfred, with six hundred followers, be "had them
maimed, blinded, hamstrung, scalped, or embowelled." (Taine's "Hist.
Eng. Lit.," p. 35.)
Herodotus describes the Scythian mode of taking the scalp: "He makes a
cut round the head near the ears, and shakes the skull out." This is
precisely the Indian custom. "The more scalps a man has," says
Herodotus, "the more highly he is esteemed among them."
The Indian scalp-lock is found on the Egyptian monuments as one of the
characteristics of the Japhetic Libyans, who shaved all the head except
one lock in the middle.
The Mantchoos of Tartary wear a scalp-lock, as do the modern Chinese.
Byron describes the heads of the dead Tartars under the walls of
Corinth, devoured by the wild dogs:
"Crimson and green were the shawls of their wear,
And each scalp had a single long tuft of hair,
All the rest was shaven and bare."
These resemblances are so striking and so numerous that repeated
attempts have been made to prove that the inhabitants of America are the
descendants of the Jews; some have claimed that they represented "the
lost tribes" of that people. But the Jews were never a maritime or
emigrating people; they formed no colonies; and it is impossible to
believe (as has been asserted) that they left their flocks and herds,
marched across the whole face of Asia, took ships and sailed across the
greatest of the oceans to a continent of the existence of which they had
If we seek the origin of these extraordinary coincidences in opinions
and habits, we must go far back of the time of the lost tribes. We must
seek it in the relationship of the Jews to the family of Noah, and in
the identity of the Noachic race destroyed in the Deluge with the people
of the drowned Atlantis.
Nor need it surprise us to find traditions perpetuated for thousands
upon thousands of years, especially among a people having a religious
The essence of religion is conservatism; little is invented; nothing
perishes; change comes from without; and even when one religion is
supplanted by another its gods live on as the demons of the new faith,
or they pass into the folk-lore and fairy stories of the people. We see
Votan, a hero in America, become the god Odin or Woden in Scandinavia;
and when his worship as a god dies out Odin survives (as Dr. Dasent has
proved) in the Wild Huntsman of the Hartz, and in the Robin Hood (Oodin)
of popular legend. The Hellequin of France becomes the Harlequin of our
pantomimes. William Tell never existed; he is a myth; a survival of the
sun-god Apollo, Indra, who was worshipped on the altars of Atlantis.
"Nothing here but it doth change into something rich and
The rite of circumcision dates back to the first days of Ph�nicia,
Egypt, and the Cushites. It, too, was probably an Atlantean custom,
invented in the Stone Age. Tens of thousands of years have passed since
the Stone Age; the ages of copper, bronze, and iron bare intervened; and
yet to this day the Hebrew rabbi performs the ceremony of circumcision
with a stone knife.
Frothingham says, speaking of St. Peter's Cathedral, in Rome:
"Into what depths of antiquity the ceremonies carried me back! To the
mysteries of Eleusis; to the sacrificial rites of Ph�nicia. The boys
swung the censors as censors had been swung in the adoration of Bacchus.
The girdle and cassock of the priests came from Persia; the veil and
tonsure were from Egypt; the alb and chasuble were prescribed by Numa
Pompilius; the stole was borrowed from the official who used to throw it
on the back of the victim that was to be sacrificed; the white surplice
was the same as described by Juvenal and Ovid."
Although it is evident that many thousands of years must have passed
since the men who wrote in Sanscrit, in Northwestern India, could have
dwelt in Europe, yet to this day they preserve among their ancient books
maps and descriptions of the western coast of Europe, and even of
England and Ireland; and we find among them a fuller knowledge of the
vexed question of the sources of the Nile than was possessed by any
nation in the world twenty-five years ago.
This perpetuation of forms and beliefs is illustrated in the fact that
the formulas used in the Middle Ages in Europe to exorcise evil spirits
were Assyrian words, imported probably thousands of years before from
the magicians of Chaldea. When the European conjurer cried out to the
demon, "Hilka, hilka, besha, besha," he had no idea that he was
repeating the very words of a people who had perished ages before, and
that they signified Go away, go away, evil one, evil one. (Lenormant,
"Anc. Hist. East," vol. i., p. 448.)
Our circle of 360 degrees; the division of a chord of the circle equal
to the radius into 60 equal parts, called degrees: the division of these
into 60 minutes, of the minute into 60 seconds, and the second into 60
thirds; the division of the day into 24 hours, each hour into 60
minutes, each minute into 60 seconds; the division of the week into
seven days, and the very order of the days--all have come down to us
from the Chaldeo-Assyrians; and these things will probably be
perpetuated among our posterity "to the last syllable of recorded time."
We need not be surprised, therefore, to find the same legends and
beliefs cropping out among the nations of Central America and the people
of Israel. Nay, it should teach us to regard the Book of Genesis with
increased veneration, as a relic dating from the most ancient days of
man's history on earth; its roots cross the great ocean; every line is
valuable; a word, a letter, an accent may throw light upon the gravest
problems of the birth of civilization.
The vital conviction which, during thousands of years, at all times
pressed home upon the Israelites, was that they were a "chosen people,"
selected out of all the multitude of the earth, to perpetuate the great
truth that there was but one God--an illimitable, omnipotent, paternal
spirit, who rewarded the good and punished the wicked--in
contradistinction from the multifarious, subordinate, animal and bestial
demi-gods of the other nations of the earth. This sublime monotheism
could only have been the outgrowth of a high civilization, for man's
first religion is necessarily a worship of "stocks and stones," and
history teaches us that the gods decrease in number as man increases in
intelligence. It was probably in Atlantis that monotheism was first
preached. The proverbs of "Ptah-hotep," the oldest book of the
Egyptians, show that this most ancient colony from Atlantis received the
pure faith from the mother-land at the very dawn of history: this book
preached the doctrine of one God, "the rewarder of the good and the
punisher of the wicked." (Reginald S. Poole, Contemporary Rev., Aug.,
1881, p. 38.) "In the early days the Egyptians worshipped one only God,
the maker of all things, without beginning and without end. To the last
the priests preserved this doctrine and taught it privately to a select
few." ("Amer. Encycl.," vol. vi., p. 463.) The Jews took up this great
truth where the Egyptians dropped it, and over the beads and over the
ruins of Egypt, Chaldea, Ph�nicia, Greece, Rome, and India this handful
of poor shepherds--ignorant, debased, and despised--have carried down to
our own times a conception which could only have originated in the
highest possible state of human society.
And even skepticism must pause before the miracle of the continued
existence of this strange people, wading through the ages, bearing on
their shoulders the burden of their great trust, and pressing forward
under the force of a perpetual and irresistible impulse. The speech that
may be heard to-day in the synagogues of Chicago and Melbourne resounded
two thousand years ago in the streets of Rome; and, at a still earlier
period, it could be heard in the palaces of Babylon and the shops of
Thebes--in Tyre, in Sidon, in Gades, in Palmyra, in Nineveh. How many
nations have perished, how many languages have ceased to exist, how many
splendid civilizations have crumbled into ruin, bow many temples and
towers and towns have gone down to dust since the sublime frenzy of
monotheism first seized this extraordinary people! All their kindred
nomadic tribes are gone; their land of promise is in the hands of
strangers; but Judaism, with its offspring, Christianity, is taking
possession of the habitable world; and the continuous life of one
people--one poor, obscure, and wretched people--spans the tremendous
gulf between "Ptah-hotep" and this nineteenth century.
If the Spirit of which the universe is but an expression--of whose frame
the stars are the infinite molecules--can be supposed ever to interfere
with the laws of matter and reach down into the doings of men, would it
not be to save from the wreck and waste of time the most sublime fruit
of the civilization of the drowned Atlantis--a belief in the one, only,
just God, the father of all life, the imposer of all moral obligations?
THE ORIGIN OF OUR ALPHABET
One of the most marvellous inventions for the advancement of mankind is
the phonetic alphabet, or a system of signs representing the sounds of
human speech. Without it our present civilization could scarcely have
No solution of the origin of our European alphabet has. yet been
obtained: we can trace it back from nation to nation, and form to form,
until we reach the Egyptians, and the archaic forms of the Ph�nicians,
Hebrews, and Cushites, but. beyond this the light fails us.
The Egyptians spoke of their hieroglyphic system of writing not as their
own invention, but as "the language of the gods." (Lenormant and Cheval,
"Anc. Hist. of the East," vol. ii., p. 208.) "The gods" were, doubtless,
their highly civilized ancestors--the people of Atlantis--who, as we
shall hereafter see, became the gods of many of the Mediterranean races.
"According to the Ph�nicians, the art of writing was invented by
Taautus, or Taut, 'whom the Egyptians call Thouth,' and the Egyptians
said it was invented by Thouth, or Thoth, otherwise called 'the first
Hermes,' in which we clearly see that both the Ph�nicians and Egyptians
referred the invention to a period older than their own separate
political existence, and to an older nation, from which both peoples
received it." (Baldwin's "Prehistoric Nations," p. 91.)
The "first Hermes," here referred to (afterward called Mercury by the
Romans), was a son of Zeus and Maia, a daughter of Atlas. This is the
same Maia whom the Abb� Brasseur de Bourbourg identifies with the Maya
of Central America.
Sir William Drummond, in his "Origines," said:
"There seems to be no way of accounting either for the early use of
letters among so many different nations, or for the resemblance which
existed between some of the graphic systems employed by those nations,
than by supposing hieroglyphical writing, if I may be allowed the term,
to have been in use among the Tsabaists in the first ages after the
Flood, when Tsabaisin (planet-worship) was the religion of almost every
country that was yet inhabited."
Sir Henry Rawlinson says:
"So great is the analogy between the first principles of the Science of
writing, as it appears to have been pursued in Chaldea, and as we can
actually trace its progress in Egypt, that we can hardly hesitate to
assign the original invention to a period before the Hamitic race had
broken up and divided."
It is not to be believed that such an extraordinary system of
sound-signs could have been the invention of any one man or even of any
one age. Like all our other acquisitions, it must have been the slow
growth and accretion of ages; it must have risen step by step from
picture-writing through an intermediate condition like that of the
Chinese, where each word or thing was represented by a separate sign.
The fact that so old and enlightened a people as the Chinese have never
reached a phonetic alphabet, gives us some indication of the greatness
of the people among whom it was invented, and the lapse of time before
they attained to it.
"According to the views which, since Champollion's great discovery, have
been gradually adopted regarding the earlier condition of the
development of alphabetical writing, the Ph�nician as well as the
Semitic characters are to be regarded as a phonetic alphabet that has
originated from pictorial writing; as one in which the ideal
signification of the symbols is wholly disregarded, and the characters
are regarded as mere signs for sounds." ("Cosmos," vol. ii., p. 129.)
Baldwin says (" Prehistoric Nations," p. 93):
"The nation that became mistress of the seas, established communication
with every shore, and monopolized the commerce of the known world, must
have substituted a phonetic alphabet for the hieroglyphics as it
gradually grew to this eminence; while isolated Egypt, less affected by
the practical wants and tendencies of commercial enterprise, retained
the hieroglyphic system, and carried it to a marvellous height of
It must be remembered that some of the letters of our alphabet are
inventions of the later nations. In the oldest alphabets there was no c,
the g taking its place. The Romans converted the g into c; and then,
finding the necessity for a g Sign, made one by adding a tail-piece to
the c (C, G). The Greeks added to the ancient alphabet the upsilon,
shaped like our V or Y, the two forms being used at first indifferently:
they added the X sign; they converted the t of the Ph�nicians into th,
or theta; z and s into signs for double consonants; they turned the
Ph�nician y (yod) into i (iota). The Greeks converted the Ph�nician
alphabet, which was partly consonantal, into one purely phonetic--"a
perfect instrument for the expression of spoken language." The w was
also added to the Ph�nician alphabet. The Romans added the y. At first i
and j were both indicated by the same sound; a sign for j was afterward
added. We have also, in common with other European languages, added a
double U, that is, VV, or W, to represent the w sound.
The letters, then, which we owe to the Ph�nicians, are A, B, C, D, E, H,
I, K, L, M, N, O, P, Q, R, S, T, Z. If we are to trace out resemblances
with the alphabet of any other country, it must be with these signs.
Is there any other country to which we can turn which possessed a
phonetic alphabet in any respect kindred to this Ph�nician alphabet? It
cannot be the Chinese alphabet, which has more signs than words; it
cannot be the cuneiform alphabet of Assyria, with its seven hundred
arrow-shaped characters, none of which bear the slightest affinity to
the Ph�nician letters.
It is a surprising fact that we find in Central America a phonetic
alphabet. This is in the alphabet of the Mayas, the ancient people of
the peninsula of Yucatan, who claim that their civilization came to them
across the sea in ships from the east, that is, from the direction of
Atlantis. The Mayas succeeded to the Colhuas, whose era terminated one
thousand years before the time of Christ; from them they received their
alphabet. It has come to us through Bishop Landa, one of the early
missionary bishops, who confesses to having burnt a great number of Maya
books because they contained nothing but the works of the devil. He
fortunately, however, preserved for posterity the alphabet of this
people. We present it herewith.
LANDA'S ALPHABET (From "North Amer. of Antiquity," p. 434.)
Diego de Landa was the first bishop of Yucatan. He wrote a history of
the Mayas and their country, which was preserved in manuscript at Madrid
in the library of the Royal Academy of History. . . . It contains a
description and explanation of the phonetic alphabet of the Mayas.
Landa's manuscript seems to have lain neglected in the library, for
little or nothing was heard of it until it was discovered by the French
priest Brasseur de Bourbourg, who, by means of it, has deciphered some
of the old American writings. he says, 'the alphabet and signs explained
by Landa have been to me a Rosetta stone.'" (Baldwin's "Ancient
America," p. 191.)
When we observe, in the table of alphabets of different European nations
which I give herewith, how greatly the forms of the Ph�nician letters
have been modified, it would surprise us to find any resemblance between
the Maya alphabet of two or three centuries since and the ancient
European forms. It must, however, be remembered that the Mayas are one
of the most conservative peoples in the world. They still adhere with
striking pertinacity to the language they spoke when Columbus landed on
San Salvador; and it is believed that that language is the same as the
one inscribed on the most ancient monuments of their country. Se�or
Pimental says of them, "The Indians have preserved this idiom with such
tenacity that they will speak no other; it is necessary for the whites
to address them in their own language to communicate with them." It is
therefore probable, as their alphabet did not pass from nation to
nation, as did the Ph�nician, that it has not departed so widely from
the original forms received from the Colhuas.
But when we consider the vast extent of time which has elapsed, and the
fact that we are probably without the intermediate stages of the
alphabet which preceded the archaic Ph�nician, it will be astonishing if
we find resemblances between any of the Maya letters and the European
forms, even though we concede that they are related. If we find decided
affinities between two or three letters, we may reasonably presume that
similar coincidences existed as to many others which have disappeared
under the attrition of centuries.
The first thought that occurs to us on examining the Landa alphabet is
the complex and ornate character of the letters. Instead of the two or
three strokes with which we indicate a sign for a sound, we have here
rude pictures of objects. And we find that these are themselves
simplifications of older forms of a still more complex character. Take,
for instance, the letter pp in Landa's alphabet, ### : here are
evidently the traces of a face. The same appear, but not so plainly, in
the sign for x, which is ### . Now, if we turn to the ancient
hieroglyphics upon the monuments of Central America, we will find the
human face appearing in a great many of them, as in the following, which
we copy from the Tablet of the Cross at Palenque. We take the
hieroglyphs from the left-hand side of the inscription. Here it will be
seen that, out of seven hieroglyphical figures, six contain human faces.
And we find that in the whole inscription of the Tablet of the Cross
there are 33 figures out of 108 that are made up in part of the human
We can see, therefore, in the Landa alphabet a tendency to
simplification. And this is what we would naturally expect. When the
emblems--which were probably first intended for religious inscriptions,
where they could be slowly and carefully elaborated--were placed in the
bands of a busy, active, commercial people, such as were the Atlanteans,
and afterward the Ph�nicians, men with whom time was valuable, the
natural tendency would be to simplify and condense them; and when the
original meaning of the picture was lost, they would naturally slur it,
as we find in the letters pp and x of the Maya alphabet, where the
figure of the human face remains only in rude lines.
The same tendency is plainly shown in the two forms of the letter h, as
given in Landa's alphabet; the original form is more elaborate than the
variation of it. The original form is ### The variation is given as ###
. Now let us suppose this simplification to be carried a step farther:
we have seen the upper and lower parts of the first form shrink into a
smaller and less elaborate shape; let us imagine that the same tendency
does away with them altogether; we would then have the letter H of the
Maya alphabet represented by this figure, ### ; now, as it takes less
time to make a single stroke than a double one, this would become in
time ### . We turn now to the archaic Greek and the old Hebrew, and we
find the letter h indicated by this sign, ### , precisely the Maya
letter h simplified. We turn to the archaic Hebrew, and we find ### .
Now it is known that the Ph�nicians wrote from right to left, and just
as we in writing from left to right slope our letters to the right, so
did the Ph�nicians slope their letters to the left. Hence the Maya sign
becomes in the archaic Ph�nician this, ### . In some of the Ph�nician
alphabets we even find the letter h made with the double strokes above
and below, as in the Maya h. The Egyptian hieroglyph for h is ### while
ch is ### . In time the Greeks carried the work of simplification still
farther, and eliminated the top lines, as we have supposed the
Atlanteans to have eliminated the double strokes, and they left the
letter as it has come down to us, H.
Now it may be said that all this is coincidence. If it is, it is
certainly remarkable. But let us go a step farther:
We have seen in Landa's alphabet that there are two forms of the letter
m. The first is ### . But we find also an m combined with the letter o,
a, or e, says Landa, in this form, ### . The m here is certainly
indicated by the central part of this combination, the figure ### ;
where does that come from? It is clearly taken from the heart of the
original figure wherein it appears. What does this prove? That the
Atlanteans, or Mayas, when they sought to simplify their letters and
combine them with others, took from the centre of the ornate
hieroglyphical figure some characteristic mark with which they
represented the whole figure. Now let us apply this rule:
We have seen in the table of alphabets that in every language, from our
own day to the time of the Ph�nicians, o has been represented by a
circle or a circle within a circle. Now where did the Ph�nicians get it?
Clearly from the Mayas. There are two figures for o in the Maya
alphabet; they are ### and ### ; now, if we apply the rule which we have
seen to exist in the case of the Maya m to these figures, the essential
characteristic found in each is the circle, in the first case pendant
from the hieroglyph; in the other, in the centre of the lower part of
it. And that this circle was withdrawn from the hieroglyph, and used
alone, as in the case of the m, is proved by the very sign used at the
foot of Landa's alphabet, which is, ### Landa calls this ma, me, or mo;
it is probably the latter, and in it we have the circle detached from
We find the precise Maya o a circle in a circle, or a dot within a
circle, repeated in the Ph�nician forms for o, thus, ### and ### , and
by exactly the same forms in the Egyptian hieroglyphics; in the Runic we
have the circle in the circle; in one form of the Greek o the dot was
placed along-side of the circle instead of below it, as in the Maya.
Are these another set of coincidences?
Take another letter:
The letter n of the Maya alphabet is represented by this sign, itself
probably a simplification of some more ornate form, ### . This is
something like our letter S, but quite unlike our N. But let us examine
into the pedigree of our n. We find in the archaic Ethiopian, a language
as old as the Egyptian, and which represents the Cushite branch of the
Atlantean stock, the sign for n (na) is ### ; in archaic Ph�nician it
comes still closer to the S shape, thus, ### , or in this form, ### ; we
have but to curve these angles to approximate it very closely to the
Maya n; in Troy this form was found, ### . The Samaritan makes it ### ;
the old Hebrew ### ; the Moab stone inscription gives it ### ; the later
Ph�nicians simplified the archaic form still further, until it became
### ; then it passed into ### : the archaic Greek form is ### ; the
later Greeks made ### , from which it passed into the present form, N.
All these forms seem to be representations of a serpent; we turn to the
valley of the Nile, and we find that the Egyptian hieroglyphic for n was
the serpent, ### ; the Pelasgian n was ### ; the Arcadian, ### ; the
Etruscan, ### .
Can anything be more significant than to find the serpent the sign for n
in Central America, and in all these Old World languages?
Now turn to the letter k. The Maya sign for k is ### . This does not
look much like our letter K; but let us examine it. Following the
precedent established for us by the Mayas in the case of the letter m,
let us see what is the distinguishing feature here; it is clearly the
figure of a serpent standing erect, with its tail doubled around its
middle, forming a circle. It has already been remarked by Savolini that
this erect serpent is very much like the Egyptian Ur�us, an erect
serpent with an enlarged body--a sacred emblem found in the hair of
their deities. We turn again to the valley of the Nile, and we find that
the Egyptian hieroglyphic for k was a serpent with a convolution or
protuberance in the middle, precisely as in the Maya, thus, ### ; this
was transformed into the Egyptian letter ### ; the serpent and the
protuberance reappear in one of the Ph�nician forms of k, to wit, ### ;
while in the Punic we have these forms, ### and ### . Now suppose a busy
people trying to give this sign: instead of drawing the serpent in all
its details they would abbreviate it into something like this, ### ; now
we turn to the ancient Ethiopian sign for k (ka), and we have ### , or
the Himyaritic Arabian ### ; while in the Ph�nician it becomes ### ; in
the archaic Greek, ### ; and in the later Greek, when they changed the
writing from left to right, ### . So that the two lines projecting from
the upright stroke of our English K are a reminiscence of the
convolution of the serpent in the Maya original and the Egyptian copy.
Turn now to the Maya sign for t: it is ### , . What is the distinctive
mark about this figure? It is the cross composed of two curved lines,
thus, ### . It is probable that in the Maya sign the cross is united at
the bottom, like a figure 8. Here again we turn to the valley of the
Nile, and we find that the Egyptian hieroglyph for t is ### and ### ;
and in the Syriac t it is ### . We even find the curved lines of the
Maya t which give it something of the appearance of the numeral 8,
repeated accurately in the Mediterranean alphabets; thus the Punic t
repeats the Maya form almost exactly as ### and ### . Now suppose a busy
people compelled to make this mark every day for a thousand years, and
generally in a hurry, and the cross would soon be made without curving
the lines; it would become X. But before it reached even that simplified
form it had crossed the Atlantic, and appeared in the archaic Ethiopian
sign for tsa, thus, ### . In the archaic Ph�nician the sign for ### is
### and ### ; the oldest Greek form is ### or ### and the later Greeks
gave it to the Romans ### , and modified this into ### ; the old Hebrew
gave it as ### and ### ; the Moab stone as ### ; this became in time ###
and ### .
Take the letter a. In the Maya there are three forms given for this
letter. The first is ### ; the third is ### . The first looks very much
like the foot of a lion or tiger; the third is plainly a foot or boot.
If one were required to give hurriedly a rude outline of either of
these, would he not represent it thus, ### ; and can we not conceive
that this could have been in time modified into the Ph�nician a, which
was ### ? The hieratic Egyptian a was ### ; the ancient Hebrew, which
was ### or ### ; the ancient Greek was the foot reversed, ### ; the
later Greek became our A.
Turn next to the Maya sign for q (ku): it is ### . Now what is the
peculiarity of this hieroglyph? The circle below is not significant, for
there are many circular figures in the Maya alphabet. Clearly, if one
was called upon to simplify this, he would retain the two small circles
joined side by side at the top, and would indicate the lower circle with
a line or dash. And when we turn to the Egyptian q we find it in this
shape, ### ; we turn to the Ethiopian q (khua), and we find it ### , as
qua, ### ; while the Ph�nician comes still nearer the supposed Maya form
in ### ; the Moab stone was ### ; the Himyaritic Arabian form became ###
; the Greek form was ### , which graduated into the Roman Q. But a still
more striking proof of the descent of the Ph�nician alphabet from the
Maya is found in the other form of the q, the Maya cu, which is ### .
Now, if we apply the Maya rule to this, and discard the outside circle,
we have this left, ### . In time the curved line would be made straight,
and the figure would assume this form, ### ; the next step would be to
make the cross on the straight line, thus, ### . One of the ancient
Ph�nician forms is ### . Can all this be accident?
The letter c or g (for the two probably gave the same sound as in the
Ph�nician) is given in the Maya alphabet as follows, ### . This would in
time be simplified into a figure representing the two sides of a
triangle with the apex upward, thus, ### . This is precisely the form
found by Dr. Schliemann in the ruins of Troy, ### . What is the
Ph�nician form for g as found on the Moab stone? It is ### . The
Carthaginian Ph�nicians gave it more of a rounded form, thus, ### . The
hieratic Egyptian figure for g was ### ; in the earlier Greek form the
left limb of the figure was shortened, thus, ### ; the later Greeks
reversed it, and wrote it ### ; the Romans, changed this into ### and it
finally became C.
In the Maya we have one sign for p, and another for pp. The first
contains a curious figure, precisely like our r laid on its back ### ,
There is, apparently, no r in the Maya alphabet; and the Roman r grew
out of the later Ph�nician r formed thus, ### ; it would appear that the
earliest Ph�nician alphabet did not contain the letter r. But if we now
turn to the Ph�nician alphabet, we will find one of the curious forms of
the p given thus, ### , a very fair representation of an r lying upon
its face. Is it not another remarkable coincidence that the p, in both
Maya and Ph�nician, should contain this singular sign?
The form of pp in the Maya alphabet is this, ### . If we are asked, on
the principle already indicated, to reduce this to its elements, we
would use a figure like this, ### ; in time the tendency would be to
shorten one of these perpendicular lines, thus, and this we find is very
much like the Ph�nician p, ### . The Greek ph is ### .
The letter l in the Maya is in two forms; one of these is ### , the
other is ### . Now, if we again apply the rule which we observed to hold
good with the letter m--that is, draw from the inside of the hieroglyph
some symbol that will briefly indicate the whole letter--we will have
one of two forms, either a right-angled figure formed thus, ### , or an
acute angle formed by joining the two lines which are unconnected, thus,
### ; and either of these forms brings us quite close to the letter l of
the Old World. We find l on the Moab stone thus formed, ### . The
archaic Ph�nician form of l was ### , or ### ; the archaic Hebrew was
### and ### ; the hieratic Egyptian was ### ; the Greek form was ###
--the Roman L.
The Maya letter b is shaped thus, ### . Now, if we turn to the
Ph�nician, we find that b is represented by the same crescent-like
figure which we find in the middle of this hieroglyph, but reversed in
the direction of the writing, thus, ### ; while in the archaic Hebrew we
have the same crescent figure as in the Maya, turned in the same
direction, but accompanied by a line drawn downward, and to the left,
thus, ### ; a similar form is also found in the Ph�nician ### , and this
in the earliest Greek changed into ### , and in the later Greek into B.
One of the Etruscan signs for b was ### , while the Pelasgian b was
represented thus, ### ; the Chaldaic b was ### ; the Syriac sign for b
was ### ; the Illyrian b was ### .
The Maya e is ### ; this became in time ### ; then ### (we see this form
on the Maya monuments); the dots in time were indicated by strokes, and
we reach the hieratic Egyptian form, ### : we even find in some of the
ancient Ph�nician inscriptions the original Maya circles preserved in
making the letter e, thus, ### ; then we find the old Greek form, ### ;
the old Hebrew, ### ; and the later Ph�nician, ### : when the direction
of the writing was changed this became ### . Dr. Schliemann found a form
like this on inscriptions deep in the ruins of Troy, ### . This is
exactly the form found on the American monuments.
The Maya i is ### ; this became in time ### ; this developed into a
still simpler form, ### ; and this passed into the Ph�nician form, ### .
The Samaritan i was formed thus, ### ; the Egyptian letter i is ### :
gradually in all these the left-hand line was dropped, and we come to
the figure used on the stone of Moab, ### and ### ; this in time became
the old Hebrew ### , or ### ; and this developed into the Greek ### .
We have seen the complicated symbol for m reduced by the Mayas
themselves into this figure, ### : if we attempt to write this rapidly,
we find it very difficult to always keep the base lines horizontal;
naturally we form something like this, ### : the distinctive figure
within the sign for m in the Maya is ### or ### . We see this repeated
in the Egyptian hieroglyphics for m, ### , and ### , and ### ; and in
the Chaldaic m, ### ; and in the Ethiopic ### . We find one form of the
Ph�nician where the m is made thus, ### ; and in the Punic it appears
thus, ### ; and this is not unlike the m on the stone of Moab, ### , or
the ancient Ph�nician forms ### , ### , and the old Greek ### , or the
ancient Hebrew ### , ### .
The ### , x, of the Maya alphabet is a hand pointing downward ### ,
this, reduced to its elements, would be expressed some thing like this,
### or ### ; and this is very much like the x of the archaic Ph�nician,
### ; or the Moab stone, ### ; or the later Ph�nician ### or the Hebrew
### , ### , or the old Greek, ### : the later Greek form was ### .
The Maya alphabet contains no sign for the letter s; there is, however,
a symbol called ca immediately above the letter k; it is probable that
the sign ca stands for the soft sound of c, as, in our words citron,
circle, civil, circus, etc. As it is written in the Maya alphabet ca,
and not k, it evidently represents a different sound. The sign ca is
this, ### . A somewhat similar sign is found in the body of the symbol
for k, thus, ### , this would appear to be a simplification of ca, but
turned downward. If now we turn to the Egyptian letters we find the sign
k represented by this figure ### , simplified again into ### ; while the
sign for k in the Ph�nician inscription on the stone of Moab is ### . If
now we turn to the s sound, indicated by the Maya sign ca, ### , we find
the resemblance still more striking to kindred European letters. The
Ph�nician s is ### ; in the Greek this becomes ### ### ; the Hebrew is
### ### ; the Samaritan, ### . The Egyptian hieroglyph for s is ### ;
the Egyptian letter s is ### ; the Ethiopic, ### ; the Chaldaic, ### ;
and the Illyrian s c is ### .
We have thus traced back the forms of eighteen of the ancient letters to
the Maya alphabet. In some cases the pedigree, is so plain as to be
For instance, take the h:
Maya, ### ; old Greek, ### ; old Hebrew, ### ; Ph�nician, ### .
Or take the letter o:
Maya, ### ; old Greek, ### ; old Hebrew, ### ; Ph�nician, ### .
Or take the letter t:
Maya, ### ; old Greek, ### ; old Ph�nician, ### and ### .
Or take the letter q:
Maya, ### ; old Ph�nician, ### and ### ; Greek, ### .
Or take the letter k:
Maya, ### ; Egyptian, ### ; Ethiopian, ### ; Ph�nician, ### .
Or take the letter n:
Maya, ### ; Egyptian, ### ; Pelasgian ### , Arcadian, ### ; Ph�nician,
Surely all this cannot be accident!
But we find another singular proof of the truth of this theory: It will
be seen that the Maya alphabet lacks the letter d and the letter r. The
Mexican alphabet possessed a d. The sounds d and t were probably
indicated in the Maya tongue by the same sign, called t in the Landa
alphabet. The Finns and Lapps do not distinguish between these two
sounds. In the oldest known form of the Ph�nician alphabet, that found
on the Moab stone, we find in the same way but one sign to express the d
and t. D does not occur on the Etruscan monuments, t being used in its
place. It would, therefore, appear that after the Maya alphabet passed
to the Ph�nicians they added two new signs for the letters d and r; and
it is a singular fact that their poverty of invention seems to have been
such that they used to express both d and r, the same sign, with very
little modification, which they had already obtained from the Maya
alphabet as the symbol for b. To illustrate this we place the signs side
It thus appears that the very signs d and r, in the Ph�nician, early
Greek, and ancient Hebrew, which are lacking in the Maya, were supplied
by imitating the Maya sign for b; and it is a curious fact that while
the Ph�nician legends claim that Taaut invented the art of writing, yet
they tell us that Taaut made records, and "delivered them to his
successors and to foreigners, of whom one was Isiris (Osiris, the
Egyptian god), the inventor of the three letters." Did these three
letters include the d and r, which they did not receive from the
Atlantean alphabet, as represented to us by the Maya alphabet?
In the alphabetical table which we herewith append we have represented
the sign V, or vau, or f, by the Maya sign for U. "In the present
so-called Hebrew, as in the Syriac, Sab�ic, Palmyrenic, and some other
kindred writings, the vau takes the place of F, and indicates the sounds
of v and u. F occurs in the same place also on the Idalian tablet of
Cyprus, in Lycian, also in Tuarik (Berber), and some other writings."
("American Cyclop�dia," art. F.)
Since writing the above, I find in the "Proceedings of the American
Philosophical Society" for December, 1880, p. 154, an interesting
article pointing out other resemblances between the Maya alphabet and
the Egyptian. I quote:
It is astonishing to notice that while Landa's first B is, according to
Valentini, represented by a footprint, and that path and footprint are
pronounced Be in the Maya dictionary, the Egyptian sign for B was the
"Still more surprising is it that the H of Landa's alphabet is a tie of
cord, while the Egyptian H is a twisted cord. . . . But the most
striking coincidence of all occurs in the coiled or curled line
representing Landa's U; for it is absolutely identical with the Egyptian
curled U. The Mayan word for to wind or bend is Uuc; but why should
Egyptians, confined as they were to the valley of the Nile, and
abhorring as they did the sea and sailors, write their U precisely like
Landa's alphabet U in Central America? There is one other remarkable
coincidence between Landa's and the Egyptian alphabets; and, by-the-way,
the English and other Teutonic dialects have a curious share in it.
Landa's D (T) is a disk with lines inside the four quarters, the allowed
Mexican symbol for a day or sun. So far as sound is concerned, the
English day represents it; so far as the form is concerned, the Egyptian
'cake,' ideograph for (1) country and (2) the sun's orbit is essentially
It would appear as if both the Ph�nicians and Egyptians drew their
alphabet from a common source, of which the Maya is a survival, but did
not borrow from one another. They followed out different characteristics
in the same original hieroglyph, as, for instance, in the letter b. And
yet I have shown that the closest resemblances exist between the Maya
alphabet and the Egyptian signs--in the c, h, t, i, k, m, n, o, q, and
s--eleven letters in all; in some cases, as in the n and k, the signs
are identical; the k, in both alphabets, is not only a serpent, but a
serpent with a protuberance or convolution in the middle! If we add to
the above the b and u, referred to in the "Proceedings of the American
Philosophical Society," we have thirteen letters out of sixteen in the
Maya and Egyptian related to each other. Can any theory of accidental
coincidences account for all this? And it must be remembered that these
resemblances are found between the only two phonetic systems of alphabet
in the world.
Let us suppose that two men agree that each shall construct apart from
the other a phonetic alphabet of sixteen letters; that they shall employ
only simple forms--combinations of straight or curved lines--and that
their signs shall not in anywise resemble the letters now in use. They
go to work apart; they have a multitudinous array of forms to draw from
the thousand possible combinations of lines, angles, circles, and
curves; when they have finished, they bring their alphabets together for
comparison. Under such circumstances it is possible that out of the
sixteen signs one sign might appear in both alphabets; there is one
chance in one hundred that such might be the case; but there is not one
chance in five hundred that this sign should in both cases represent the
same sound. It is barely possible that two men working thus apart should
bit upon two or three identical forms, but altogether impossible that
these forms should have the same significance; and by no stretch of the
imagination can it be supposed that in these alphabets so created,
without correspondence, thirteen out of sixteen signs should be the same
in form and the same in meaning.
It is probable that a full study of the Central American monuments may
throw stronger light upon the connection between the Maya and the
European alphabets, and that further discoveries of inscriptions in
Europe may approximate the alphabets of the New and Old World still more
closely by supplying intermediate forms.
We find in the American hieroglyphs peculiar signs which take the place
of pictures, and which probably, like the hieratic symbols mingled with
the hieroglyphics of Egypt, represent alphabetical sounds. For instance,
we find this sign on the walls of the palace of Palenque, ### ; this is
not unlike the form of the Ph�nician t used in writing, ### and ### ; we
find also upon these monuments the letter o represented by a small
circle, and entering into many of the hieroglyphs; we also find the tau
sign (thus ### ) often repeated; also the sign which we have supposed to
represent b, ### ; also this sign, ### , which we think is the
simplification of the letter k; also this sign, which we suppose to
represent e, ### ; also this figure, ### ; and this ### . There is an
evident tendency to reduce the complex figures to simple signs whenever
the writers proceed to form words.
Although it has so far been found difficult, if not impossible, to
translate the compound words formed from the Maya alphabet, yet we can
go far enough to see that they used the system of simpler sounds for the
whole hieroglyph to which we have referred.
Bishop Landa gives us, in addition to the alphabet, the signs which
represent the days and months, and which are evidently compounds of the
Maya letters. For instance, we have this figure as the representative of
the month Mol ### . Here we see very plainly the letter ### for m, the
sign ### for o; and we will possibly find the sign for l in the right
angle to the right of the m sign, and which is derived from the figure
in the second sign for l in the Maya alphabet.
One of the most ancient races of Central America is the Chiapenec, a
branch of the Mayas. They claim to be the first settlers of the country.
They came, their legends tell us, from the East, from beyond the sea.
And even after the lapse of so many thousand years most remarkable
resemblances have been found to exist between the Chiapenec language and
the Hebrew, the living representative of the Ph�nician tongue.
The Mexican scholar, Se�or Melgar ("North Americans of Antiquity," p.
475) gives the following list of words taken from the Chiapenec and the
| English. | Chiapenec. | Hebrew. |
| Son | Been | Ben. |
| Daughter | Batz | Bath. |
| Father | Abagh | Abba. |
| Star in Zodiac | Chimax | Chimah. |
| King | Molo | Maloc. |
| Name applied to Adam | Abagh | Abah. |
| Afflicted | Chanam | Chanan. |
| God | Elab | Elab. |
| September | Tsiquin | Tischiri. |
| More | Chic | Chi. |
| Rich | Chabin | Chabic. |
| Son of Seth | Enot | Enos. |
| To give | Votan | Votan. |
Thus, while we find such extraordinary resemblances between the Maya
alphabet and the Ph�nician alphabet, we find equally surprising
coincidences between the Chiapenec tongue, a branch of the Mayas, and
the Hebrew, a branch of the Ph�nician.
Attempts have been repeatedly made by European scholars to trace the
letters of the Ph�nician alphabet back to the elaborate hieroglyphics
from which all authorities agree they must have been developed, but all
such attempts have been failures. But here, in the Maya alphabet, we are
not only able to extract from the heart of the hieroglyphic the typical
sign for the sound, but we are able to go a step farther, and, by means
of the inscriptions upon the monuments of Copan and Palenque, deduce the
alphabetical hieroglyph itself from an older and more ornate figure; we
thus not Only discover the relationship of the European alphabet to the
American, but we trace its descent in the very mode in which reason
tells us it must have been developed. All this proves that the
similarities in question did not come from Ph�nicians having
accidentally visited the shores of America, but that we have before us
the origin, the source, the very matrix in which the Ph�nician alphabet
was formed. In the light of such a discovery the inscriptions upon the
monuments of Central America assume incalculable importance; they take
us back to a civilization far anterior to the oldest known in Europe;
they represent the language of antediluvian times.
It may be said that it is improbable that the use of an alphabet could
have ascended to antediluvian times, or to that prehistoric age when
intercourse existed between ancient Europe and America; but it must be
remembered that if the Flood legends of Europe and Asia are worth
anything they prove that the art of writing existed at the date of the
Deluge, and that records of antediluvian learning were preserved by
those who escaped the Flood; while Plato tells us that the people of
Atlantis engraved their laws upon columns of bronze and plates of gold.
There was a general belief among the ancient nations that the art of
writing was known to the antediluvians. The Druids believed in books
more ancient than the Flood. They styled them "the books of Pheryllt,"
and "the writings of Pridian or Hu." "Ceridwen consults them before she
prepares the mysterious caldron which shadows out the awful catastrophe
of the Deluge." (Faber's "Pagan Idolatry," vol. ii., pp. 150, 151.) In
the first Avatar of Vishnu we are told that "the divine ordinances were
stolen by the demon Haya-Griva. Vishnu became a fish; and after the
Deluge, when the waters had subsided, he recovered the holy books from
the bottom of the ocean." Berosus, speaking of the time before the
Deluge, says: "Oannes wrote concerning the generations of mankind and
their civil polity." The Hebrew commentators on Genesis say, "Our
rabbins assert that Adam, our father of blessed memory, composed a book
of precepts, which were delivered to him by God in Paradise." (Smith's
"Sacred Annals," p. 49.) That is to say, the Hebrews preserved a
tradition that the Ad-ami, the people of Ad, or Adlantis, possessed,
while yet dwelling in Paradise, the art of writing. It has been
suggested that without the use of letters it would have been impossible
to preserve the many details as to dates, ages, and measurements, as of
the ark, handed down to us in Genesis. Josephus, quoting Jewish
traditions, says, "The births and deaths of illustrious men, between
Adam and Noah, were noted down at the time with great accuracy." (Ant.,
lib. 1, cap. iii., see. 3.) Suidas, a Greek lexicographer of the
eleventh century, expresses tradition when he says, "Adam was the author
of arts and letters." The Egyptians said that their god Anubis was an
antediluvian, and it "wrote annals before the Flood." The Chinese have
traditions that the earliest race of their nation, prior to history,
"taught all the arts of life and wrote books." "The Goths always had the
use of letters;" and Le Grand affirms that before or soon after the
Flood "there were found the acts of great men engraved in letters on
large stones." (Fosbroke's "Encyclop�dia of Antiquity," vol. i., p.
355.) Pliny says, "Letters were always in use." Strabo says, "The
inhabitants of Spain possessed records written before the Deluge."
(Jackson's "Chronicles of Antiquity," vol. iii., p. 85.) Mitford
("History of Greece," vol. i, p. 121) says, "Nothing appears to us so
probable as that it (the alphabet) was derived from the antediluvian
THE BRONZE AGE IN EUROPE.
There exist in Europe the evidences of three different ages of human
1. The Stone Age, which dates back to a vast antiquity. It is subdivided
into two periods: an age of rough stone implements; and a later age,
when these implements were ground smooth and made in improved forms.
2. The Bronze Age, when the great mass of implements were manufactured
of a compound metal, consisting of about nine parts of copper and one
part of tin.
3. An age when iron superseded bronze for weapons and cutting tools,
although bronze still remained in use for ornaments. This age continued
down to what we call the Historical Period, and embraces our present
civilization; its more ancient remains are mixed with coins of the
Gauls, Greeks, and Romans.
The Bronze Period has been one of the perplexing problems of European
scientists. Articles of bronze are found over nearly all that continent,
but in especial abundance in Ireland and Scandinavia. They indicate very
considerable refinement and civilization upon the part of the people who
made them; and a wide diversity of opinion has prevailed as to who that
people were and where they dwelt.
In the first place, it was observed that the age of bronze (a compound
of copper and tin) must, in the natural order of things, have been
preceded by an age when copper and tin were used separately, before the
ancient metallurgists had discovered the art of combining them, and yet
in Europe the remains of no such age have been found. Sir John Lubbock
says ("Prehistoric Times," p. 59), "The absence of implements made
either of copper or tin seems to me to indicate that the art of making
bronze was introduced into, not invented in, Europe." The absence of
articles of copper is especially marked, nearly all the European
specimens of copper implements have been found in Ireland; and yet out
of twelve hundred and eighty-three articles of the Bronze Age, in the
great museum at Dublin, only thirty celts and one sword-blade are said
to be made of pure copper; and even as to some of these there seems to
be a question.
Where on the face of the earth are we to find a Copper Age? Is it in the
barbaric depths of that Asia out of whose uncivilized tribes all
civilization is said to have issued? By no means. Again we are compelled
to turn to the West. In America, from Bolivia to Lake Superior, we find
everywhere the traces of a long-enduring Copper Age; bronze existed, it
is true, in Mexico, but it held the same relation to the copper as the
copper held to the bronze in Europe--it was the exception as against the
rule. And among the Chippeways of the shores of Lake Superior, and among
them alone, we find any traditions of the origin of the manufacture of
copper implements; and on the shores of that lake we find pure copper,
out of which the first metal tools were probably hammered before man had
learned to reduce the ore or run the metal into moulds. And on the
shores of this same American lake we find the ancient mines from which
some people, thousands of years ago, derived their supplies of copper.
IMPLEMENTS AND ORNAMENTS OF THE BRONZE AGE
Sir W. R. Wilde says, "It is remarkable that so few antique copper
implements have been found (in Europe), although a knowledge of that
metal must have been the preliminary stage in the manufacture of
bronze." He thinks that this may be accounted for by supposing that "but
a short time elapsed between the knowledge of smelting and casting
copper ore and the introduction of tin, and the subsequent manufacture
and use of bronze."
But here we have in America the evidence that thousands of years must
have elapsed during which copper was used alone, before it was
discovered that by adding one-tenth part of tin it gave a harder edge,
and produced a superior metal.
The Bronze Age cannot be attributed to the Roman civilization. Sir John
Lubbock shows ("Prehistoric Times," p. 21) that bronze weapons have
never been found associated with Roman coins or pottery, or other
remains of the Roman Period; that bronze articles have been found in the
greatest abundance in countries like Ireland and Denmark, which were
never invaded by Roman armies; and that the character of the
ornamentation of the works of bronze is not Roman in character, and that
the Roman bronze contained a large proportion of lead, which is never
the case in that of the Bronze Age.
It has been customary to assume that the Bronze Age was due to the
Ph�nicians, but of late the highest authorities have taken issue with
this opinion. Sir John Lubbock (Ibid., p. 73) gives the following
reasons why the Ph�nicians could not have been the authors of the Bronze
Age: First, the ornamentation is different. In the Bronze Age "this
always consists of geometrical figures, and we rarely, if ever, find
upon them representations of animals and plants, while on the ornamented
shields, etc., described by Homer, as well as in the decoration of
Solomon's Temple, animals and plants were abundantly represented." The
cuts on p. 242 will show the character of the ornamentation of the
Bronze Age. In the next place, the form of burial is different in the
Bronze Age from that of the Ph�nicians. "In the third place, the
Ph�nicians, so far as we know them, were well acquainted with the use of
iron; in Homer we find the warriors already armed with iron weapons, and
the tools used in preparing the materials for Solomon's Temple were of
This view is also held by M. de Fallenberg, in the "Bulletin de la
Soci�t� des Sciences" of Berne. (See "Smithsonian Rep.," 1865-66, p.
383.) He says,
ORNAMENTS OF THE BRONZE AGE
"It seems surprising that the nearest neighbors of the Ph�nicians--the
Greeks, the Egyptians, the Etruscans, and the Romans--should have
manufactured plumbiferous bronzes, while the Ph�nicians carried to the
people of the North only pure bronzes without the alloy of lead. If the
civilized people of the Mediterranean added lead to their bronzes, it
can scarcely be doubted that the calculating Ph�nicians would have done
as much, and, at least, with distant and half-civilized tribes, have
replaced the more costly tin by the cheaper metal. . . . On the whole,
then, I consider that the first knowledge of bronze may have been
conveyed to the populations of the period tinder review not only by the
Ph�nicians, but by other civilized people dwelling more to the
Professor E. Desor, in his work on the "Lacustrian Constructions of the
Lake of Neuchatel," says,
"The Ph�nicians certainly knew the use of iron, and it can scarcely be
conceived why they should have excluded it from their commerce on the
Scandinavian coasts. . . . The Etruscans, moreover, were acquainted with
the use of iron as well as the Ph�nicians, and it has already been seen
that the composition of their bronzes is different, since it contains
lead, which is entirely a stranger to our bronze epoch. . . . We must
look, then, beyond both the Etruscans and Ph�nicians in attempting to
identify the commerce of the Bronze Age of our palafittes. It will be
the province of the historian to inquire whether, exclusive of
Ph�nicians and Carthaginians, there may not have been some maritime and
commercial people who carried on a traffic through the ports of Liguria
with the populations of the age of bronze of the lakes of Italy before
the discovery of iron. We may remark, in passing, that there is nothing
to prove that the Ph�nicians were the first navigators. History, on the
Contrary, positively mentions prisoners, under the name of Tokhari, who
were vanquished in a naval battle fought by Rhamses III. in the
thirteenth century before our era, and whose physiognomy, according to
Morton, would indicate the Celtic type. Now there is room to suppose
that if these Tokhari were energetic enough to measure their strength on
the sea with one of the powerful kings of Egypt, they must, with
stronger reason, have been in a condition to carry on a commerce along
the coasts of the Mediterranean, and perhaps of the Atlantic. If such a
commerce really existed before the time of the Ph�nicians, it would not
be limited to the southern slope of the Alps; it would have extended
also to the people of the age of bronze in Switzerland. The introduction
of bronze would thus ascend to a very high antiquity, doubtless beyond
the limits of the most ancient European races."
For the merchants of the Bronze Age we must look beyond even the
Tokhari, who were contemporaries of the Ph�nicians.
The Tokhari, we have seen, are represented as taken prisoners, in a
sea-fight with Rhamses III., of the twentieth dynasty, about the
thirteenth century B.C. They are probably the Tochari of Strabo. The
accompanying figure represents one of these people as they appear upon
the Egyptian monuments. (See Nott and Gliddon's "Types of Mankind," p.
108.) Here we have, not an inhabitant of Atlantis, but probably a
representative of one of the mixed races that sprung from its colonies.
Dr. Morton thinks these people, as painted on the Egyptian monuments, to
have "strong Celtic features. Those familiar with the Scotch Highlanders
may recognize a speaking likeness."
It is at least interesting to have a portrait of one of the daring race
who more than three thousand years ago left the west of Europe in their
ships to attack the mighty power of Egypt.
They were troublesome to the nations of the East for many centuries; for
in 700 B.C. we find them depicted on the Assyrian monuments. This figure
represents one of the Tokhari of the time of Sennacherib. It will be
observed that the headdress (apparently of feathers) is the same in both
portraits, al, though separated by a period of six hundred years.
It is more reasonable to suppose that the authors of the bronze Age of
Europe were the people described by Plato, who were workers in metal,
who were highly civilized, who preceded in time all the nations which we
call ancient. It was this people who passed through an age of copper
before they reached the age of bronze, and whose colonies in America
represented this older form of metallurgy as it existed for many
Professor Desor says:
"We are asked if the preparation of bronze was not an indigenous
invention which had originated on the slopes of the Alps? . . . In this
idea we acquiesced for a moment. But we are met by the objection that,
if this were so, the natives, like the ancient tribes of America, would
have commenced by manufacturing utensils of copper; yet thus far no
utensils of this metal have been found except a few in the strand of
Lake Garda. The great majority of metallic objects is of bronze, which
necessitated the employment of tin, and this could not be obtained
except by commerce, inasmuch as it is a stranger to the Alps. It would
appear, therefore, more natural to admit that the art of combining tin
with copper--in other words, that the manufacture of bronze--was of
foreign importation." He then shows that, although copper ores are found
in the Alps, the probability is that even "the copper also was of
foreign importation. Now, in view of the prodigious quantity of bronze
manufactured at that epoch, this single branch of commerce must itself
have necessitated the most incessant commercial communications."
And as this commerce could not, as we have seen, have been carried on by
the Romans, Greeks, Etruscans, or Ph�nicians, because their
civilizations flourished during the Iron Age, to which this age of
bronze was anterior, where then are we to look for a great maritime and
commercial people, who carried vast quantities of copper, tin, and
bronze (unalloyed by the lead of the south of Europe) to Denmark,
Norway, Sweden, Ireland, England, France, Spain, Switzerland, and Italy?
Where can we find them save in that people of Atlantis, whose ships,
docks, canals, and commerce provoked the astonishment of the ancient
Egyptians, as recorded by Plato. The Toltec root for water is Atl; the
Peruvian word for copper is Anti (from which, probably, the Andes
derived their name, as there was a province of Anti on their slopes):
may it not be that the name of Atlantis is derived from these originals,
and signified the copper island, or the copper mountains in the sea? And
from these came the thousands of tons of copper and tin that must,
during the Bronze Age, have been introduced into Europe? There are no
ancient works to indicate that the tin mines of Cornwall were worked for
any length of time in the early days (see "Prehistoric Times," p. 74).
Morlot has pointed out that the bronze implements of Hallstadt, in
Austria, were of foreign origin, because they contain no lead or silver.
Or, if we are to seek for the source of the vast amount of copper
brought into Europe somewhere else than in Atlantis, may it not be that
these supplies were drawn in large part from the shores of Lake Superior
in America? The mining operations of some ancient people were there
carried on upon a gigantic scale, not only along the shores of the lake
but even far out upon its islands. At Isle Royale vast works were found,
reaching to a depth of sixty feet; great intelligence was shown in
following up the richest veins even when interrupted; the excavations
were drained by underground drains. On three sections of land on this
island the amount of mining exceeded that mined in twenty years in one
of our largest mines, with a numerous force constantly employed. In one
place the excavations extended in a nearly continuous line for two
miles. No remains of the dead and no mounds are found near these mines:
it would seem, therefore, that the miners came from a distance, and
carried their dead back with them. Henry Gillman ("Smithsonian Rep.,"
1873, p. 387) supposes that the curious so-called "Garden Beds" of
Michigan were the fields from which they drew their supplies of food. He
"The discoveries in Isle Royale throw a new light on the character of
the 'Mound Builders,' giving us a totally distinct conception of them,
and dignifying them with something of the prowess and spirit of
adventure which we associate with the higher races. The copper, the
result of their mining, to be available, must, in all probability, have
been conveyed in vessels, great or small, across a treacherous and
stormy sea, whose dangers are formidable to us now, being dreaded even
by our largest craft, and often proving their destruction. Leaving their
homes, those men dared to face the unknown, to brave the hardships and
perils of the deep and of the wilderness, actuated by an ambition which
we to-day would not be ashamed to acknowledge."
Such vast works in so remote a land must have been inspired by the
commercial necessities of some great civilization; and why not by that
ancient and mighty people who covered Europe, Asia, and Africa with
their manufactures of bronze-and who possessed, as Plato tells us,
enormous fleets trading to all parts of the inhabited world-whose cities
roared with the continual tumult of traffic, whose dominion extended to
Italy and Egypt, and who held parts of "the great opposite continent" of
America under their control? A continuous water-way led, from the island
of Atlantis to the Gulf of Mexico, and thence up the Mississippi River
and its tributaries almost to these very mines of Lake Superior.
Arthur Mitchell says ("The Past in the Present," p. 132),
"The discovery of bronze, and the knowledge of how to make it, may, as a
mere intellectual effort, be regarded as rather above than below the
effort which is involved in the discovery and use of iron. As regards
bronze, there is first the discovery of copper, and the way of getting
it from its ore; then the discovery of tin, and the way to get it from
its ore; and then the further discovery that, by an admixture of tin
with copper in proper proportions, an alloy with the qualities of a hard
metal can be produced. It is surely no mistake to say that there goes
quite as much thinking to this as to the getting of iron from its ore,
and the conversion of that iron into steel. There is a considerable leap
from stone to bronze, but the leap from bronze to iron is comparatively
small. . . . It seems highly improbable, if not altogether absurd, that
the human mind, at some particular stage of its development, should
here, there, and everywhere--independently, and as the result of
reaching that stage--discover that an alloy of copper and tin yields a
hard metal useful in the manufacture of tools and weapons. There is
nothing analogous to such an occurrence in the known history of human
progress. It is infinitely more probable that bronze was discovered in
one or more centres by one or more men, and that its first use was
solely in such centre or centres. That the invention should then be
perfected, and its various applications found out, and that it should
thereafter spread more or less broadly over the face of the earth, is a
thing easily understood."
We will find the knowledge of bronze wherever the colonies of Atlantis
extended, and nowhere else; and Plato tells us that the people of
Atlantis possessed and used that metal.
The indications are that the Bronze Age represents the coming in of a
new people--a civilized people. With that era, it is believed, appears
in Europe for the first time the domesticated animals-the horse, the ox,
the sheep, the goat, and the hog. (Morlot, "Smithsonian Rep.," 1860, p.
311.) It was a small race, with very small hands; this is shown in the
size of the sword-hilts: they are not large enough to be used by the
present races of Europe. They were a race with long skulls, as
contradistinguished. from the round heads of the Stone Period. The
drawings on the following page represent the types of the two races.
SKULLS OF THE AGE OF STONE, DENMARK
This people must have sent out colonies to the shores of France, Spain,
Italy, Ireland, Denmark, and Norway, who bore with them the arts and
implements of civilized life. They raised crops of grain, as is proved
by the bronze sickles found in different parts of Europe.
It is not even certain that their explorations did not reach to Iceland.
"When the Northmen first landed in Iceland (A.D. 875), although the
country was uninhabited, they found there Irish books, mass-bells, and
other objects which had been left behind by earlier visitors, called
Papar; these pap� (fathers) were the clerici of Dicuil. If, then, as we
may suppose from the testimony here referred to, these objects belonged
to Irish monks (papar), who had come from the Faroe Islands, why should
they have been termed in the native sagas 'West men' (Vestmen), 'who had
come over the sea from the westward' (kommer til vestan um haf)?"
(Humboldt's "Cosmos," vol. ii., 238.)
If they came "from the West" they could not have come from Ireland; and
the Scandinavians may easily have mistaken Atlantean books and bells for
Irish books and mass-bells. They do not say that there were any
evidences that these relics belonged to a people who had recently
visited the island; and, as they found the island uninhabited, it would
be impossible for them to tell how many years or centuries had elapsed
since the books and bells were left there.
The fact that the implements of the Bronze Age came from some common
centre, and did not originate independently in different countries, is
proved by the striking similarity which exists between the bronze
implements of regions as widely separated as Switzerland, Ireland,
Denmark, and Africa. It is not to be supposed that any overland
communication existed in that early age between these countries; and the
coincidence of design which we find to exist can only be accounted for
by the fact that the articles of bronze were obtained from some
sea-going people, who carried on a commerce at the same time with all
Compare, for instance, these two decorated bronze celts. the first from
Ireland, the second from Denmark; and then compare both these with a
stone celt found in a mound in Tennessee, given below. Here we have the
same form precisely.
LEAF SHAPED BRONZE SWORDS
Compare the bronze swords in the four preceding illustrations-from
Ireland, Sweden, Switzerland, and Denmark-and then observe the same very
peculiar shape--the leaf-shape, as it is called--in the stone sword from
Big Harpeth River, Tennessee.
We shall find, as we proceed, that the Ph�nicians were unquestionably
identified with Atlantis, and that it was probably from Atlantis they
derived their god Baal, or Bel, or El, whose name crops out in the Bel
of the Babylonians, the Elohim, and the Beelzebub of the Jews, and the
Allah of the Arabians, And we find that this great deity, whose worship
extended so widely among the Mediterranean races, was known and adored
also upon the northern and western coasts of Europe. Professor Nilsson
finds traces of Baal worship in Scandinavia; he tells us that the
festival of Baal, or Balder, was celebrated on midsummer's night in
Scania, and far up into Norway, almost to the Loffoden Islands, until
within the last fifty years. The feast of Baal, or Beltinne, was
celebrated in Ireland to a late period. I argue from these facts, not
that the worship of Baal came to Ireland and Norway from Assyria or
Arabia, but that the same great parent-race which carried the knowledge
of Baal to the Mediterranean brought it also to the western coasts of
Europe, and with the adoration of Baal they imported also the implements
of bronze now found in such abundance in those regions.
The same similarity of form exists in the bronze knives from Denmark and
Switzerland, as represented in the illustrations on p. 254.
In the central figure we have a representation of an Egyptian-looking
man holding a cup before him. We shall see, as we proceed, that the
magnetic needle, or "mariner's compass," dates back to the days of
Hercules, and that it consisted of a bar of magnetized iron floating
upon a piece of wood in a cup. It is possible that in this ancient relic
of the Bronze Age we have a representation of the magnetic cup. The
magnetic needle must certainly have been an object of great interest to
a people who, through its agency, were able to carry on commerce on all
the shores of Europe, from the Mediterranean to the Baltic. The second
knife represented above has upon its handle a wheel, or cross surrounded
by a ring, which, we shall see here after, was pre-eminently the symbol
If we are satisfied that these implements of bronze were the work of the
artisans of Atlantis--of the antediluvians--they must acquire additional
and extraordinary interest in our eyes, and we turn to them to earn
something of the habits and customs of "that great, original,
broad-eyed, sunken race."
We find among the relies of the Bronze Age an urn, which probably gives
us some idea of the houses of the Atlanteans: it is evidently made to
represent a house, and shows us even the rude fashion in which they
fastened their doors. The Mandan Indiana built round houses very much of
The museum at Munich contains a very interesting piece of pottery, which
is supposed to represent one of the lake villages or hamlets of the era
when the people of Switzerland dwelt in houses erected on piles driven
into the bottom of the lakes of that country. The accompanying
illustration represents it. The double spiral ornament upon it shows
that it belongs to the Bronze Age.
Among the curious relies of the Bronze Age are a number of razor-like
knives; from which we may conclude that the habit of shaving the whole
or some part of the face or head dates back to a great antiquity. The
illustrations below represent them.
These knives were found in Denmark. The figures upon them represent
ships, and it is not impossible that their curious appendages may have
been a primitive kind of sails.
An examination of the second of these bronze knives reveals a singular
feature: Upon the handle of the razor there are ten series of lines; the
stars in the sky are ten in number; and there were probably ten rings at
the left-hand side of the figure, two being obliterated. There were, we
are told, ten sub-kingdoms in Atlantis; and precisely as the thirteen
stripes on the American flag symbolize the thirteen original States of
the Union, so the recurrence of the figure ten in the emblems upon this
bronze implement may have reference to the ten subdivisions of Atlantis.
The large object in the middle of this ship may be intended to represent
a palm-tree-the symbol, as we shall see, in America, of Aztlan, or
Atlantis. We have but to compare the pictures of the ships upon these
ancient razor-knives with the accompanying representations of a Roman
galley and a ship of William the Conqueror's time, to see that there can
be no question that they represented the galleys of that remote age.
They are doubtless faithful portraits of the great vessels which Plato
described as filling the harbors of Atlantis.
SHIP OF WILLIAM THE CONQUERER.
We give on page 258 a representation of a bronze dagger found in
Ireland, a strongly-made weapon. The cut below it represents the only
implement of the Bronze Age yet found containing an inscription. It has
been impossible to decipher it, or even to tell to what group of
languages its alphabet belongs.
It is proper to note, in connection with a discussion of the Bronze Age,
that our word bronze is derived from the Basque, or Iberian broncea,
from which the Spanish derive bronce, and the Italians bronzo. The
copper mines of the Basques were extensively worked at a very early age
of the world, either by the people of Atlantis or by the Basques
themselves, a colony from Atlantis. The probabilities are that the name
for bronze, as well as the metal itself, dates back to Plato's island.
I give some illustrations on pages 239 and 242 of ornaments and
implements of the Bronze Age, which may serve to throw light upon the
habits of the ancient people. It will be seen that they had reached a
considerable degree of civilization; that they raised crops of grain,
and cut them with sickles; that their women ornamented themselves with
bracelets, armlets, earrings, finger-rings, hair-pins, and amulets; that
their mechanics used hammers, adzes, and chisels; and that they
possessed very fair specimens of pottery. Sir John Lubbock argues
("Prehistoric Times," pp. 14, 16, etc.):
"A new civilization is indicated not only by the mere presence of bronze
but by the beauty and variety of the articles made from it. We find not
only, as before, during the Stone Age, axes, arrows, and knives, but, in
addition, swords, lances, sickles, fish-hooks, ear-rings, bracelets,
pins, rings, and a variety of other articles."
If the bronze implements of Europe had been derived from the Ph�nicians,
Greeks, Etruscans, or Romans, the nearer we approached the site of those
nations the greater should be the number of bronze weapons we would
find; but the reverse is the case. Sir John Lubbock ("Prehistoric
Times," p. 20) shows that more than three hundred and fifty bronze
swords have been found in Denmark, and that the Dublin Museum contains
twelve hundred and eighty-three bronze weapons found in Ireland;
"while," he says, "I have only been able to hear of six bronze swords in
all Italy." This state of things is inexplicable unless we suppose that
Ireland and Denmark received their bronze implements directly from some
maritime nation whose site was practically as near their shores as it
was to the shores of the Mediterranean. We have but to look at our map
on page 43, ante, to see that Atlantis was considerably nearer to
Ireland than it was to Italy.
The striking resemblance between the bronze implements found in the
different portions of Europe is another proof that they were derived
from one and the same source-from some great mercantile people who
carried on their commerce at the same time with Denmark, Norway,
Ireland, Spain, Greece, Italy, Egypt, Switzerland, and Hungary. Mr.
Wright ("Essays on Arch�ology," p. 120) says, "Whenever we find the
bronze swords or celts,
VASES FROM MOUNDS IN THE MISSISSIPPI VALLEY.
whether in Ireland, in the far west, in Scotland, in distant
Scandinavia, in Germany, or still farther east, in the Sclavonic
countries, they are the same--not similar in character, but identical."
Says Sir John Lubbock ("Prehistoric Times," p. 59), "Not only are the
several varieties of celts found throughout Europe alike, but some of
the swords, knives, daggers, etc., are so similar that they seem as if
they must have been cast by the same maker."
What race was there, other than the people of Atlantis, that existed
before the Iron Age-before the Greek, Roman, Etruscan, and
Ph�nician--that was civilized, that worked in metals, that carried on a
commerce with all parts of Europe? Does history or tradition make
mention of any such?
We find a great resemblance between the pottery of the Bronze Age in
Europe and the pottery of the ancient inhabitants of America. The two
figures on page 260 represent vases from one of the mounds of the
Mississippi Valley. Compare them with the following from the lake
dwellings of Switzerland:
VASES FROM SWITZERLAND.
It will be seen that these vases could scarcely stand upright
unsupported; and we find that the ancient inhabitants of Switzerland had
circles or rings of baked earth in which they placed them when in use,
as in the annexed figure. The Mound Builders used the same contrivance.
The illustrations of discoidal stones on page 263 are from the "North
Americans of Antiquity," p. 77. The objects represented were taken from
an ancient mound in Illinois. It would be indeed surprising if two
distinct peoples, living in two different continents, thousands of miles
apart, should, without any intercourse with each other, not only form
their vases in the same inconvenient form, but should hit upon the same
expedient as a remedy.
We observe, in the American spear-head and the Swiss hatchets, on the
opposite page, the same overlapping of the metal around the staff, or
handle--a very peculiar mode of uniting them together, which has now
passed out of use.
A favorite design of the men of the Bronze Age in Europe is the spiral
or double-spiral form. It appears on the face of the urn in the shape of
a lake dwelling, which is given on p. 255; it also appears in the rock
sculptures of Argyleshire, Scotland, here shown.
We find the same figure in an ancient fragment of pottery from the
Little Colorado, as given in the "United States Pacific Railroad Survey
Report," vol. iii., p. 49, art. Pottery. It was part of a large vessel.
The annexed illustration represents this.
DISCOIDAL STONES, ILLINOIS.
COPPER SPEAR-HEAD, LAKE SUPERIOR.
BRONZE HATCHETS, SWITZERLAND.
The same design is also found in ancient rock etchings of the Zu�is of