Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 10.djvu/299

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285
PROFESSOR HUXLEY'S LECTURES.

arise conditions conducive to that internal exogamy which Mr. McLennan supposes, rightly I think, to replace external exogamy. For, unless we assume that, in a cluster of tribes, each will undertake to rear women for adjacent tribes to steal, we must conclude that the exogamous requirement will be met in a qualified manner. Wives born within the tribe, but foreign by blood, will, under pressure of the difficulty, be considered allowable, instead of actually stolen wives. And thus, indeed, that kinship in the female line, which primitive irregularity in the relations of the sexes originates, will become established, even though male parenthood is known; since this interpretation of kinship will make possible conformity to a law of connubium that could not otherwise be obeyed.

 

Nothing of much importance is to be said respecting exogamy and endogamy in their general bearings on social life.

Exogamy in its primitive form is clearly an accompaniment of the lowest barbarism; and it decreases as the hostility of societies becomes less constant, and the usages of war mitigated. That the implied crossing of tribal stocks, where these tribal stocks are very small, may be advantageous, physiologically, is true; and exogamy may so secure a benefit which at a later stage is secured by the mingling of conquering and conquered tribes; though none who bear in mind the thoughtlessness of savages will suppose such a benefit to have been contemplated. But the exogamous custom, as at first established, implies an extremely abject condition of women; a brutal treatment of them; an entire absence of the higher sentiments that accompany the relation of the sexes. Associated with the lowest type of political life, it is also associated with the lowest type of domestic life.

Evidently endogamy, which at the outset must have characterized the more peaceful groups, and which has prevailed as societies have become less hostile, is a concomitant of the higher forms of the family.

 

PROFESSOR HUXLEY'S LECTURES.[1]
III.
THE DEMONSTRATIVE EVIDENCE OF EVOLUTION.

IN my last lecture, I had occasion to place before you evidence derived from fossil remains, which, as I stated, was perfectly consistent with the doctrine of evolution, in fact, was favorable to it, but could not be regarded as the highest kind of evidence, or as that sort of evidence that we call demonstrative.

  1. The last of three lectures on "The Direct Evidence of Evolution," delivered at Chickering Hall, New York, September 20th. From the report of the New York Tribune, carefully revised by Prof. Huxley.