« السابقةمتابعة »
Doct. Jarvis notes this as an hypothesis, which has been a favourite topic with European writers; and as a subject, to which it is hoped the Americans may be said to be waking up at last.
Manasses Ben Israel, in a work, entitled “The Hope of Israel,” has written to show that the American Indians are the ten tribes of Israel, But as we have access to his authors, we may consult them for ourselves. The main pillar of his evidence is James Adair, Esq. Mr. Adair was a man of established character, as appears from good authority.
He lived a trader among the Indians, in the south of North America, for forty years. He left them and returned to England in 1774, and there published his “ History of the American Indians ;” and his reasons for being persuaded thai they are the ten tribes of Israel. Remarking on their descent and origin, he concludes thus; “ From the most accurate observations I could make, in the long time I traded among the Indian Americans, I was foreed to believe them lineally descended from the Israelites. Had the nine tribes and a half of Israel, that were carried off by Shalmanezer, and settled in Media, continued there long, it is very probable by intermarrying with the natives, and from their natural fickleness, and proneness to idolatry, and also from the force of example; that they would have adopted and bowed before the gods of Media and Assyria ; and would have carried them along with them. But there is not a trace of this idolatry among the Indians.” Mr. Adair gives his opinion, that the ten tribes, soon after their banishment from the land of Israel, left Media, and reached this continent from the north-west, probably before the carrying away of the Jews to Babylon.
A summary will be given of the arguments of Mr. Adair, and of a number of other writers on this subject.
As the evidence given by Mr. Adair appears in some respects the most momentoùs and conclusive, I shall adduce a testimonial in his behalf. In the “ Star in the West,” published by the Hon. Elias Boudinot, LL. D. upon this subject, that venerable man says; • The writer of these sheets has made a free use of Mr. Adair's history of the Indians; which renders it necessary that something further should be said of him. Sometime about the year 1774, Mr. Adair came to Elizabethtown, (where the writer lived,) with his manuscript, and applied to Mr. Livingstone, (afterward governor of New-jersey-a correct scholar,) requesting him to correct his manuscript. He brought ample recommendations, and gave a good account of himself. Our political troubles with Great Britain then increasing, (it being the year before the commencement of the revolutionary war,) Mr. Adair, who was on his way to Great Britain, was advised not to risk being detained from his voyage, till the work could be critically examined ; but to set off as soon as possible. He accordingly took his passage in the first vessel bound to England. Às soon as the war was over, (Mr. Boudinot adds of himself, the writer sent to London to obtain a copy of this work. After reading it with care, he strictly examined a gentleman, then a member with him in congress, and of excellent character, who had acted as our agent among the Indians to the southward, during the war, relative to the points of fact stated by Mr. Adair, without letting him know the design, and from him found all the leading facts mentioned in Mr. Adair's history, fully confirmed from his own personal knowiedge.”
Here are the evidences of two great and good men most artiessly uniting in the leading facts stated by Mr. Adair. The character of Mr. Boudinot (who was for some time President of the American Bible Society,) is well known. He was satisfied with the truth of Mr. Adair's history, and that the natives of our land are the Hebrews, the ten tribes. And he hence published his “ Star in the West” on this subject; which is most worthy of the perusál of all men.
From various authors and travellers, among the Indians, the fact that the American Indians are the ten tribes of Israel, will be attempted to be proved by the following arguments :
1. The American natives have one origin.
2. Their language appears to have been Hebrew.
3. They have had their imitation of the ark of the covenant in ancient Israel.
4. They have been in the practice of circumcision.
5. They have acknowledged one and oniy one God.
6. Their variety of traditions, historical and religious, go to evince that they are the ten tribes of Israel.
7. The celebrated William Penn gives accounts of the natives of Pennsylvania, which go to corroborate the same point.
8. Their having a tribe, answering in various respects, to the tribe of Levi, sheds furthers light on this sub ect.
9. Several prophetic traits of character given of the Hebrews, do accurately apply to the aboTigines of America.
10. The Indians being in tribes, with their heads and names of tribes, affords further light upon this subject.
11. Their having an imitation of the ancient city of refuge, evinces the truth of our subject; and
12. Other Indian rites, and various other considerations, go to evince the fact that this people are the ten tribes of Israel.
1. The American natives have one origin.--Their language has a variety of dialects; but all are believed by some good judges to be the same radical language. Various noted authors agree in this. Charlevoix, in his history of Canada, says; “The Algonquin and the Huron languages, (which he says are as really the same, as the French and old Norman are the same,) have between them the language of all the savage nations we are acquainted with. Whoever should well understand both of these, might travel without an interpreter more than fifteen hundred leagues of country, and make himself understood by an hundred different nations, who have each their peculiar tongue;" meaning dialect. The Algonquin was the dialect of the Wolf tribe, or the Mohegan; and most of the native tribes of New-England and of Virginia.
Doctor Jonathan Edwards, son of President Edwards, lived in his youth among the Indians.in as his father was a missionary among them, before he was called to Princeton College ; and he became as familiar with the Mohegan dialect, as with his mother tongue. He had also a good knowledge of the Mohawk dialect. Jounced the Mohegan the most extensive of all the Indian dialects of North America. He names not less than sixteen tribes, besides the original
tribes of New-England, as agreeing with the Mohegan. Herein the doctor agrees with the testimony of Charlevoix just noted. Here we find a cogent argument in favour of the Indians of North America, at least as being of one origin. And arguments will be furnished that the Indians of South America are probably of the same origin.
Doctor Boudinot (who for more than forty years was cf opinion that the Indians are the ten tribes, and who sought and obtained much evidence on this subject, assures us, that the syllables which compose the word Yohewah, (Jehoval) and Yah, (Jah) are the roots of a great number of Indian words, through different tribes.-They make great use of these words, and of ihe syllables which compose the names of God; also which form the word Hallelujah, through their mations for thousands of miles; especially in their religious songs and dances. With beating aire an exact keeping of time, they begin a religious dance thus; Hal, hal, hal ; then le, le, le ; next lu, lu, lu ; and then close yah, yah, yah. This is their traditional song of praise to the Great Spirit. This, it is asserted, is
, sung in South, as well as North America. And this author says; “Two Indians, who belong to far distant nations, may without the knowledge of each other's language, except from the general idiom of all their tribes, converse with each other, and make contracts without an interpreter.” This shews them to have been of one origin.
Du Pratz says, in his history of Louisiana, “ The nations of North America derived their origin from the same country, since at bottom they all have the same manners and
and the same manner of speaking and thinking." It