Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 16.djvu/344

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324
THE POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.


the great number of stocks, which are linguistically distinct, and of which only a few show any relationship with each other. Slavery may have contributed not a little to assist this dispersion, as that institution is by no means an invention of white men, but was long practiced by the blacks among themselves. It is not infrequent to see many negro tribes experience, through expulsion from their home, the same fate which among us overtook the Jews and Armenians.

These migrations of the four aboriginal races of Africa were not voluntary, but were pursued under the pressure of external circumstances. It certainly was owing to the immigration en masse of the central races, and especially the Hamitic stock, that compelled the aborigines of Africa to recede before their mentally and bodily superior invaders, and withdraw to the south of the continent. The inception of these emigrations is of great antiquity, and may be approximately described as follows:

The Egyptians were the last of the immigrated Hamitic stock, as we find them located immediately on the boundary of Suez, over which arm of land the migrations found their path. The accepted history of the Egyptians goes back four thousand years before Christ, at which time they had already erected a monarchical unit based on a highly developed culture. After allowing the shortest possible time for the Egyptians to have developed their culture from the rude beginnings to that height which is noticed in their monuments, viz., one thousand years, we find the year 5000 B. C. the latest date for their entry into Africa. Now, before the Egyptians, their relatives, the Berbers, with their collateral branch, the extinct Guanches, the Bedsha, the Somali, the Dankali, the Galla, and other tribes, wandered into Africa, and as ethnic movements are customarily slow and successional in nature, we may take one thousand years for the migration period. Thus at the lowest reckoning we reach the year 6000 B. C. from which we can date the movements of the autochthonous races of Africa.

As to the New World, according to our own view and that of other inquirers, at least two distinct races are represented, viz., the Esquimau in the extreme north, and the Indian distributed from the settlements of the Esquimau down to the extreme south. Other students take the ground that the type which we have named the Indian should be split up into many races, how many is not agreed. Whatever the facts in regard to this, all agree that the Esquimau is to be sharply separated from the Indian, and that he is not autochthonous in the New World, but a recent immigrant from the extreme north of Asia.

Among the Indian races, of whom only a few can be united linguistically in groups — as in respect to language the same heterogeneity prevails in America as among the negroes of Africa — still further migrations have been undertaken. These can easily be traced to their objective points. In North America such a point is the