Paradise Found, by William F. Warren, , at sacred-texts.com
It is useless to speculate on this subject.Charles Darwin.
The location of the cradle of the human race is as much a problem for the ethnologist and anthropologist as it is for the theologian. The archæologist, the zoölogist, and even the biologist, if at all broad and philosophical in their inquiries, cannot ignore the high interest of the questions, Was there for the human race one primitive centre of distribution? and, if so, Where was it located?
Thirty years ago the pretentious American work by Nott and Gliddon, entitled "The Types of Mankind," 1a work written in opposition to the doctrine of the unity of the human race,attracted unusual attention to the former of these questions. The teaching therein put forth was that there are very many types or varieties of men without genealogical connection with each other, and that therefore a great number of primitive centres of distribution must be assumed. The avowed prejudices of the projectors of the work against certain races, particularly the African, would have rendered the influence of the work upon the scientific world extremely slight, had not contributions of some value from Dr. S. G. Morton, and Professor Louis Agassiz
been incorporated with it. As it was, it gave European ethnologists occasion to form and express very uncomplimentary conceptions of American representatives of ethnological research. 1 Fortunately these crude beginners of the science have had no influential successors of their own sort in this country, and but obscure or half-hearted disciples in any other. 2 The polygeny of the race has at present no respectable support. Even the author of the latest and perhaps ablest of the works on the Preadamite Hypothesis remarks, "The plural origin of mankind is a doctrine now almost entirely superseded. All schools admit the probable descent of all races from a common stock." 3 To the second question, therefore, the attention of the scientific and archæological world is steadily gravitating. Given one primeval point of departure for the race, where shall that point of departure be sought?
The answers which recent biologists, naturalists, and ethnologists have given to this problem are hardly less numerous or less conflicting than are the solutions proposed by theologians. Of these
answers Professor Zoeckler, in a late work, enumerates ten, each having the support of eminent scientific names. 1 In latitude they range from Greenland to Central Africa, and in longitude from America to Central Asia. Of the whole number, the two which seem to command the widest and weightiest support are, first, the hypothesis that "Lemuria"a wholly imaginary, now submerged prehistoric continent under the northern portion of the Indian Oceanwas the "mother-region" of the race; and, secondly, that it was in the heart of Central Asia.
The former of these sites is the one supported by Haeckel, Caspari, Peschel, and many others. 2 Though less positive, Darwin and Lyell seem favorable to the same location or to one in the adjoining portion of Africa. Most of the recent maps of the progressive dispersion of the race over the globe have been constructed in accordance with this theory. 3 Perhaps the best popular summary of the arguments in its favor is that found in Oscar Peschel's "Races of Men." 4
But while biological speculation, especially in the hands of Darwinists, has strongly inclined toward the chief habitat of the ape tribes in its attempts to find man's primitive point of departure, comparative philologists, mythologists, and archæological
ethnographers have of late very strongly tended to place the cradle of mankind on the lofty plateau of Pamir in Central Asia. For these the eminent French anthropologist, Quatrefages, is well entitled to speak.
We know [says this savant] that in Asia there is a vast region bounded on the south and south-west by the Himalayas, on the west by the Bolor mountains, on the north-west by the Alla-Tau, on the north by the Altai range and its off-shoots, on the east by the Kingkhan, on the south and south-east by the Felina and Kwen-lun. Judging of it by what exists at the present day, this great central region might be regarded as having included the cradle of the human race.
In fact, the three fundamental types of all the races of mankind are represented in the populations grouped around this region. The negro races are the furthest removed from it, but have nevertheless marine stations, in which they are found pure or mixed, from the Kiussiu to the Andaman Islands. On the continent they have mingled their blood with nearly all the inferior castes and classes of the two Gangetic peninsulas; they are still found pure in each of them; they ascend as far as Nepal, and, according to Elphinstone, spread to the west as far as the Persian Gulf and Lake Zareh. The yellow race, pure, or mixed here and there with white elements, seems alone to occupy the area in question. The circumference of this region is peopled by it to the north, the east, the south-east, and the west. In the south it is more mixed, but it none the less forms an important element of the population. The white race, by its allophylian representatives, seems to have disputed the possession of even the central area itself with the yellow race. In early times we find the Yu-Tchi, the U-Suns, to the north of Hoang-Ho; and at the present day in Little Thibet, in Eastern Thibet, small islands of white populations have
been pointed out. The Miao-Tsé occupy the mountainous regions of China; the Siaputhes are proof against all attacks in the gorges of Bolor. On the confines of this area we find to the east the Aïnos and the Japanese of high caste, the Tinguians of the Philippine Islands; to the south the Hindus. To the south-west and west, the white element, pure or mixed, is completely predominant. No other region on the face of the globe presents similar reunion of the extreme types of the human race distributed around a common centre. This fact of itself might suggest to the naturalist the conjecture which I have expressed above; but we may appeal to other considerations.
One of the weightiest of these is drawn from philology. The three fundamental forms of human language are found in the same regions and in analogous connections. In the centre and the south-east of our area the monosyllabic languages are represented by the Chinese, the Annamite, the Siamese, and the Thibetan. As agglutinative languages, we find, from the north-east to the north-west, the group of the Ugro-Japanese; in the south that of the Dravidians and the Malays; and in the west the Turkish languages. Lastly, Sanscrit with its derivatives, and the Iranian languages, represent, in the south and south-west, the inflectional languages. With the linguistic types accumulated around this central region of Asia all human languages are connected, either by their vocabulary or their grammar. Some of these Asiatic languages resemble very closely languages spoken in regions far removed, or separated from the area in question by very different languages.
Lastly, it is from Asia, again, that our earliest-tamed domestic animals have come. Isidore Geoffroy-Saint-Hilaire is entirely agreed on this point with Dureau de la Malle.
Thus, taking into account only the present epoch,
everything leads us back to this central plateau, or rather this vast inclosure. Here, we are inclined to say to ourselves, the first human beings appeared, and multiplied down to the moment when the populations overflowed like a bowl which is too full, and poured themselves out in human waves in all directions. 1
This view of the location of the first centre of the race is very widely accepted. It has the support of many great names. To its establishment contributions have been made by scholars in a great variety of fields. Among them may be mentioned Lassen, Burnouf, Ewald, Renan, Obry, DEckstein,. Höfer, Senart, Maspéro, Lenormant, etc. Perhaps the most important single treatise representing the view is Obry's "Cradle of the Human Species,"a work of singular interest to every scholar. 2
But the latest writers on the question are by no means confined to the two locations just mentioned. The difficulty of accounting for the first advent of human beings in America, without supposing in early times a closer land-connection between the eastern and western hemispheres in the intertropical regions than now exists, has led not a few ethnologists to postulate a lost Atlantis, including perhaps the Canary and Madeira Islands, or the Azores,
or located to the North or South of them, and to place in it the fountain head of the streams of population which colonized both the Old and the New World. 1
Another location lately advanced with great confidence and supported with remarkable acuteness and learning is that advocated by Dr. Friedrich Delitzsch in his valuable work entitled "Wo lag das Paradies?" 2 This site is on the Euphrates between Bagdad and Babylon. 3 In the author's construction the "four rivers" are the great canal west of the Euphrates, called by the Greeks the Pallacopas,
the Shat-en-Nil, and the lower Tigris and Euphrates. But despite the conceded ability of the plea, there seems at present little prospect that it will secure acceptance among scholars. The distinguished Theodor Noeldeke, in a recent review, while cordially praising the learning and ingenuity of the work, professes himself unmoved by its arguments. 1 Similarly a critic in this country writes: "Unfortunately for the theory so powerfully advanced, almost all the linguistic evidences by which it is supported are still of doubtful value, the etymology of the Babylonian names in most cases, and the reading in some, being disputed by high authorities in this obscure field of inquiry. Were the linguistic points proved, it would be hard to resist the power of the argument, in spite of various difficulties arising from the scanty text of Genesis itself. As it is, although all other solutions of the knotty Biblical problem may be subject to still graver objections, the following questions militate too strongly against Professor Delitzsch's solution: Why, if the stream of Eden be the middle Euphrates, is it left unnamed in the narrative, though it is certain that the Hebrews were perfectly familiar both with the middle and the upper course of that river? Why, if the Pison and Gihon designate the canals Pallacopas and Shat-en-Nil, are they said to compass lands which the canals only traverse? If the lower Tigris be meant by the Hiddekel, why is this river described as flowing in front of Assyria, which lay above the central Mesopotamian
lowland asserted to be Eden? How should a writer familiar with the whole course of the Tigris deem its lower part a branch of the Euphrates? Why should Cush, a name which commonly designated Ethiopia, have been used by the narrator in a sense in which it nowhere else occurs in the Scriptures, without the least further definition? Why, on the other hand, is Havilah, if the Arabian borderland so well known to the Hebrews be meant, so fully described by its products? Who tells us that the gold, the bdellium, and the shoham of Babylonia were also characteristic of the adjoining Havilah? But whether these objections, in the present stage of Assyriological studies, be fatal to the theory of Professor Delitzsch or not, we have no hesitation in saying that his dissertation, amplified as it is by supplementary treatises on the ancient geography and ethnology of the Mesopotamian and neighboring countries, of Canaan, Egypt, and Elam, is a perfect treasury of knowledge,made most accessible by excellent indexes,and probably the most brilliant production in all Biblico-Assyriological literature." 1
At the present writing, the latest monograph upon the subject is the one just published in the "Revue de lHistoire des Religions," from the pen of M. Beauvois. 2 This locates the Eden of ethnic traditions in America, and ascribes to the Keltic race
no small influence upon the Greco-Roman mythology in the development of such ideas as those pertaining to the Gardens of the Hesperides, the Isles of the Blessed, etc. The site advocated is not new, though the line of argument is fresh and scholarly. The hypothesis that the cradle of the race is to be sought in America has before found advocacy at the hands of J. Klaproth, Gobineau, and others.
That this, however, is not to be the last and only word on the subject is evident from the fact that, in a huge work just from the press, an English writer says: "If there be an earthly original for the heavenly Eden, it will be found in equatorial Africa, the land of seething, swarming, multitudinous, and colossal life, where the mother nature grew great with her latest race; the lair in which the lusty breeder brought forth her black, barbarian brood, and put forth for them such a warm, welling bosom as cannot be paralleled elsewhere on earth. This was the world of wet and heaven of heat; the land of equal day and dark; that supplied the Two Truths of Uarti (Egyptian); the top of the world; the very nipple (Kepa) of the breast of earth, which is there one vast streaming fount of moisture quick with life. So surely as a topographical Meru is found in Habesh, so surely is the Earthly Paradise, the original of the mythical which was carried forth over the world by the migrations from Kam, to be found there, if at all." 1
In fine, so resultless seem all discussions and investigations in this field that in his work on "The Patriarchs of Humanity" Dr. Julius Grill, like Noeldeke, prefers to locate lost Paradise "in Utopia," and to deny to it all historic reality. 1 Evidently the naturalists and the ethnologists, the comparative mythologists, and Kulturgeschichtschreiber, have not yet solved the problem. Their "mother-region" of the human race is as elusive and Protean as are any of the terrestrial Edens of theology, or of legend, or of poetry.
Thus far, then, all search has been fruitless. Paradise is indeed lost. The explorer cannot find it; the theologian, the naturalist, and the archæologist have all sought it in vain. Representative voices out of every camp are heard confessing utter ignorance as to the region where human history began. "The problem," says Professor Ebers, "remains unanswered."
33:1 Philadelphia and London, 1354.
34:1 Such references as the following are not uncommon: "Unerlässlich bleibt die Behauptung eines einzigen Ausgangsortes sämmtlicher Menschenrassen, im Gegensatze zur Anthropologenschule unter den Amerikanern, die vielleicht um ihr Gewissen über die vormalige Negersklaverei und den Rassenmord der Indianer zu beruhigen, in neuster Zeit über hundert Menschenarten, nicht Menschenrassen, überhaupt so viele geschaffen hat als Völkertypen sich aufstellen lassen," etc.O. Peschel, in Ausland, 1869, p. 1110. Cited in Caspari, Die Urgeschichte der Menschheit. 2d ed., Leipsic, 1877, vol. i., p. 241.
34:2 See Simonin, LHomme Américain. Paris, 1870: p. 12. A. Réville, Les Religions des Peuples non-civilisés. Paris, 1883: vol. i., p. 196.
34:3 Alexander Winchell, Preadamites; or a Demonstration of the Existence of Men before Adam. Chicago, 1880: p. 297. One of the latest and most authoritative criticisms and refutations of Agassiz's polygenism is found in Quatrefages, The Human Race. N. Y., 1879: chap. xiv.
35:1 The Cross of Christ. Translated by Evans. London, 1877. Appendix iii., p. 389.
35:2 Ernst Haeckel, The Pedigree of Man, and other Essays. London, 1883: pp. 73-80. Otto Kuntze, Phytogeogenesis. Leipsic, 1884: P. 52, note.
35:3 See Caspari's in Die Urgeschichte der Menschheit, at the close of vol. i.; Kracher's Ethnographische Weltkarte in Novara Expedition, Vienna, 1875; Winchell's in his Preadamites, p. I.
35:4 New York, Appletons, pp. 26-34.
38:1 The Human Species, pp. 175-177.Quatrefages noteworthy suggestion as to the possibility of a modification of the above conclusion in consequence of the revelations of recent paleontological researches will be noticed in Part III., chapter 7.
38:2 Le Berceau de lEspèce Humaine selon les Indiens, les Perses et les Hébreux. Amiens, 1858. See also Lenormant, Origines de lHistoire. Paris, 1882: tom. ii. 1, pp. 41, 144, 145. (Translated in part in The Contemporary Review, Sept. 1881.) Fragments cosmogoniques de Berose, pp. 300-333. Renan, Histoire générale des Langues Semitiques, pp. 475-484. Wilford, Asiatic Researches, vol. vi., pp. 455-536, and the following volumes.
39:1 Unger, Die versunkene Insel Atlantis. Vienna, 1860. An American work in advocacy of this theory is Ignatius Donnelly's Atlantis: The Antediluvian World. New York, 1882. In Europe the hypothesis has been represented as largely abandoned. See Engler, Die Entwickelungsgeschichte der Pflanzenwelt. Leipsic, 1879: vol. i., p. 82. But a new modification has since appeared in the work of M. Berlioux of Lyons: Les Atlantes. Histoire de lAtlantis et de lAtlas primitif, ou Introduction a lhistoire de lEurope. Paris, 1883.
39:2 Wo lag das Paradies? Eine biblisch-assyriologische Studie. Mit zahlreichen assyriologischen Beiträgen zur biblischen Länder- und Völkerkunde und einer Karte Babyloniens. Von Dr. Friedrich Delitzsch, Professor der Assyriologie an der Universität Leipzig. Leipsic, 1881. The author is a son of the well-known Biblical scholar Professor Franz Delitzsch, and is himself eminent as an Assyriologist.
39:3 Compare the language of his fellow-student in Assyriology, Professor Felice Finzi: "Mentre a cercare la culla degli Ariani dobbiamo volgerci ad Oriente, agli Uttara-Kuru degli Indiani, al mitico paradiso degli nomini del monte Meru, all Airyanem Vaêdjô degli Irani, al regno di Udyana presso al Caschmir; mentre in qualche gruppo del sistema uralo-altaico dee forse indicarsi il centro di formazione della famiglia turanica, e la orografia del Caucaso potrà forse sola determinare il sito più opportuno per lo sviluppo delle tribù che se ne attestano autottone; i Semiti ci si mostrano figli di quella terra ove si sono svolte le pagine più belle della loro storia. È là forse in un angolo di questo paese ricco un tempo dello splendore di una natura lussureggiante che la tribù semita si formò."Ricerche per lo Studio dell Antichità Assira. Torino, 1872: p. 433.
40:1 "Seine Ansicht zu begründen wendet er sehr viel Gelehrsamkeit und noch mehr Scharfsinn auf, aber ich fürchte umsonst. Nach sorgfältiger Prüfung muss ich festhalten an einer Lage des Paradieses in 'Utopien,' wie er etwas spöttisch sagt."Zeitsthrift der Deutschen Morgenländischen Gesellschaft, 1882, p. 174.
41:1 The Nation. New York, Mar. 15, 1883. See Lenormant's criticisms in Les Origines de lHistoire, tom. ii.; and Halévy's in the Revue Critique, Paris, 1881, pp. 457-463, 477-485.
41:2 "LElysée Transatlantique et lEden Occidental," par E. Beauvois. Revue, Paris, 1883, pp. 273 ss. See also "LElysée des Mexicains comparé a celui des Celtes," by the same author, in same Review, 1884.
42:1 The Natural Genesis, containing an attempt to recover and reconstitute the lost Origins of the Myths and Mysteries, Types and Symbols, Religion and Language, with Egypt for the mouthpiece, and Africa as the birthplace. By Gerald Massey. London, 1883: vol. ii., p. 162. It is impossible to understand how Mr. Massey reconciles the foregoing language with that used on p. 28 of the same volume, where p. 43 he speaks of the crooked sword Khepsh, "that turned every way, and by its revolution formed the circle of Eden, or, as it was represented, kept the way of the Tree of Life, the Pole, where the happy garden was planted as the primary creation, which was the home of the primeval pair." But in the language of The Nation (June 26, 1884) the work is "an enormous conglomeration of facts set down with entire indifference to scientific principles of comparison, . . . and, as far as the author's aim is concerned, absolutely worthless."
43:1 "Der Ort, wohin die althebräische Ueberlieferung die Wiege des Menschengeschlechtes verlegt . . . ist also nicht auf der Erde gelegen, and gehört dem Bereich der Wirklichkeit nicht an."Grill, Die Erzväter der Menschheit. Leipzig, 1875: Abth. I., p. 242.