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in England, there is now so close an intercourse between the East and the West, that at Oxford, for instance, it is almost as easy to study the language, manners, and customs of the Veddahs as of the Gaels.
Besides India, there are the Colonies, and there is, or, at all events, there ought to be, no difficulty in obtaining through the Colonial Office any information that could be of use for the study of civilised or uncivilised tribes from Canada to New Guinea.
Lastly, there is the wonderful net which Missionary enterprise has spread from England over the whole world, and which might so usefully be employed, not only for its own most excellent purpose, but likewise for gathering valuable information for the proper study of mankind.
Though I have often had to complain of the small encouragement which ethnological researches receive in England, where they ought to flourish and abound, I feel bound to express my sincere gratitude for the kindness and the intelligent interest with which the Directors of the old East-India Company, and the authorities at the India Office, the Colonial Office, and the Missionary Societies have listened to my constant and sometimes, no doubt, somewhat impatient appeals.
In India much has been done, not only for the study of its ancient classical literature and the exploration of its antiquities, but likewise for studying the numerous living dialects, collecting legends, registering customs, studying religions and superstitions. The publication of the Rig-veda, the oldest book of the Aryan race, in six quarto volumes, and the series of translations of the Sacred Books of the East,
India Ost-India 'est with
entrusted to my editorship, bear sufficient witness that my appeals for help have not always been in vain.
If I have been less successful in stimulating ethnological research in the Colonies, it has not been altogether my fault. At one time I thought indeed that the first step at least had been made. During Lord Granville's tenure of office an official invitation was sent to all the Colonies, requesting all who took an interest in the history of native races, to collect their languages, to note down their religious practices, their customs and laws, to describe their antiquities, their idols, their weapons and tools, and to send accounts to the Colonial Office in London. The invitation was well responded to, and my hope was that these papers, after careful examination, might have been published from time to time as “Ethnological Records of the English Colonies. But alas, a new king arose which knew not Joseph. The papers were either allowed to accumulate in forgotten pigeon-holes, or were handed over to some learned societies, and under the cold water that was persistently poured upon it, the scheme that had been started with every prospect of success was finally extinguished. Languages which have lived for thousands of years are now allowed to die out without being recorded ; laws dating from the first beginnings of social organisation are forgotten; religious customs which might have thrown light on many a dark page in the history of other religions, become extinct before our eyes, because the official correspondence became troublesome to the permanent staff of the Colonial Office, and because the expenditure of a few thousand pounds was considered too extravagant for preserving the historical records of
the English Colonies. Some good, however, has come of this agitation, though it was less than what was hoped for. In several of the Colonies local grants have been made for archaeological and linguistic research, and at the Cape a professorship has actually been founded for South African Philology, which, in connection with the important linguistic library, given by Sir George Grey, will make Cape Town, I hope, a permanent home of African studies ?
Work done in America. Most excellent work is now being done in America also. There had been in the United States too some remissness, and some failures and waste of money. But when at last it was perceived that the preservation of whatever can still be known about the aboriginal tribes of America forms a kind of national duty, the funds were soon forthcoming, and the best scholars were found to carry out this work most thoroughly. By Act of Congress of March 3, 1879, the United States Geological Survey was established, and a Bureau of Ethnology was started under the direction of the Smithsonian Institution, with an excellent Director, Mr. J. W. Powell, and an efficient staff of able assistants. The work was divided into four departments,-arts, institutions, languages, and opinions. But, as Mr. Powell remarks in his Report,
these four departments must work together and throw light on each other. The study of arts is but the collection of curiosities, unless the relations between arts, institutions, and language are discovered. The study of institutions leads but to the discovery
Introduction to the Science of Religion, p. 275.
of curious habits and customs, unless the deeper meaning thereof is discovered from arts, languages, and opinions. The study of language is but the study of words, unless philological research is based upon a knowledge of arts, institutions, and opinions. And the study of opinions is but the collection of mythic stories, if their true meaning is not ascertained in the history of arts, institutions, and languages.'
In 1877 appeared the ‘Introduction to the Study of Indian Languages,' with words, phrases, and sentences to be collected, by J. W. Powell; second edition 1880.
The first Report of the Bureau of Ethnology 1879 to 1880, published in 1881, contained exceedingly valuable contributions from the Director, Mr. Powell, and from several of his fellow-workers ?
Volunteers came forward from many parts to help in this noble work, as soon as it became known that their contributions would be published with due credit, and that objects of savage and barbaric art might be safely deposited in a National Museum.
In 1881 appeared the important and comprehensive work of Hon. Lewis H. Morgan on Houses and House-Life of the American Aborigines' (Vol. IV. of Contributions to American Ethnology), containing most careful observations on two great periods in the growth of early society of which we know next to nothing in other parts of the world. Mr. Morgan's great work, “Systems of Consanguinity and Affinity,' had appeared in 1871, published by the Smithsonian Institution, and had laid a solid foundation for a new branch of ethnological study. But this new essay deserves equal attention. It treats of two periods, the Older and the Middle period of barbarism, the former represented by the Iroquois and similar tribes in the North, the latter by the Aztecs of Mexico and the Indians of Yucatan and Central America. Mr. Morgan tries to show that during those, periods, the family being too weak a unit to face the struggle of life, it was thought prudent and necessary to form combinations of families, living together in large houses, and that this led to a curious social and governmental organization, to a certain communion in living, and respect for hospitality, and peculiar kinds of kinship, all of extreme interest to the student of ethnology. Mr. Morgan's death is a severe loss to ethnological science, and we ought not to forget that, as Mr. Brinton remarks ("American Languages, 1885, p. 6), the life-work of that eminent antiquary was based entirely on linguistics.
1 The most important papers were :-Dr. H. C. Yarrow, Contri. bution to the study of the Mortuary Customs of the North American Indians,' a continuation of a former paper, called “Introduction to the study of Mortuary Customs'; E. S. Holden, Studies in Central American Picture Writing'; Colonel Garrick Mallery, "SignLanguage among North American Indians.' There is also at the end of the volume a useful catalogue of linguistic MSS. in the library of the Bureau of Ethnology, by Mr. James Pilling, the same scholar who is preparing a complete Bibliography of North American Philology, containing a chronological list of all works written in or upon any of the languages of North America.
Linguistic studies occupy the foremost place in the work now being carried on under the auspices of the Bureau of Ethnology 1, because, as Mr. Powell truly
1 The following grammars, we are informed, are in preparation, and will soon be published :—The Cegina Language, by the Rev. J. Owen Dorsey ; The Klamath Language, by A. S. Gatschet; The Dakota Language, by the Rev. S. R. Briggs. These will be followed by a Grammar of several of the Iroquois Dialects, by Mrs. Erminnie A. Smith, and by a Grammar of the Chata Language, by Prof. Otis T. Mason.