Page:Journal of American Folklore vol. 12.djvu/22

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1 4 Journal of A mcrican Folk-Lore.

between different systems, and in some cases it is almost a matter of choice on any one point, so evenly are the different colors divided. But if we make such a composite as best we may, we get as a result the following : — N. — Black (White) ; E. = Red (Yellow) ; S. = Blue (Red) ; W. = Yellow (Blue) :

in nearly all cases the relative frequency being so close that two colors have to be given. An Asiatic composite made on the same lines would show a rather interesting difference. In it we should have : —

N. = Black. E. = White (Blue). S. = Red. W. = White.

There is in this case a much greater uniformity, and only one point (East) requires two colors, whereas in the case of the American com- posite every point required two colors. To be sure, in the Asiatic composite there are not nearly as many instances to make the com- posite from, there being only China, Japan, Corea, Thibet, India, and Java, although, from there being two or more systems for India and Thibet, there is a total of ten cases. Such composites are of rather doubtful value, however.

One more composite of this sort may be made, and with more profit and reason perhaps. If, instead of taking all the American tribes, and attempting to form a composite or representative system, we separate them into a Northern and a Southern group (under- standing by " Southern" all the tribes of the Southwest, Mexico, and Central America), — if we make such a division, the task, which before was almost impossible because of such great variation, now becomes easy. We should have, following this plan, then, —

Northern Group, N. = Black. E. = Red. S. = White (Green). W. = Red. Southern Group, N. = White. E. = Yellow. S. = Red. W. = Blue.

Although the Northern group has Red for both East and West, yet the two groups are seen to be sharply contrasted ; and they may each be said, with much more fairness than could be said of the first composites, to be a representative system for their respective regions. If we do the same with the Asiatic systems, we obtain a similar result. Taking the two groups of Northern and Eastern, and South- ern and Central, we have : —

N. and E., N. = Black. E. = Green-Blue. S. = Red. W. == White.

S. and C., N. = Black-Yellow. E. = White. S. == Blue-Green. W. = Red- Yellow.

As before stated, the comparison of such composites is of very doubt- ful value, but it is rather interesting to note the partial agreement of the Southern American group with the Northern and Eastern Asiatic group, if we shift the latter East for West (on the assump- tion of the ocean being the cause of ascribing Blue or Green to the

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