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Title: A Record of Study in Aboriginal American Languages
Author: Brinton, Daniel Garrison, 1837-1899
Language: English
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Transcriber's Note

A number of typographical errors have been maintained in this version of
this book. They have been marked with a [TN-#], which refers to a
description in the complete list found at the end of the text.





  DANIEL G. BRINTON, A.M., M.D., LL.D., Sc.D.,

  _Professor of American Archæology and Linguistics in the
  University of Pennsylvania_

  MEDIA, PA., 1898



If this review of my own work in the field of American Linguistics
requires an apology, I may say that the preparation of it was suggested
to me by my late friend, Mr. James Constantine Pilling, whose admirable
volumes on the bibliography of American Aboriginal Languages are
familiar to all students. He had experienced the difficulty of
cataloguing the articles of writers whose contributions extend over many
years, and have been published in different journals, proceedings of
societies and volumes, and was impressed with the advantage of an
analytical list composed by the author himself.

With this in view, I have arranged the present survey of my writings in
this branch of science, extending over a period of two score years. They
are grouped geographically, and sufficient reference to their contents
subjoined to indicate their aims and conclusions.


  MEDIA, PENNA., November, 1898.


     1. The Philosophic Grammar of American Languages as set forth by
     Wilhelm von Humboldt; with the translation of an unpublished Memoir
     by him on the American Verb. pp. 51. In _Proceedings_ of the
     American Philosophical Society, 1885.

     2. On Polysynthesis and Incorporation as characteristics of
     American Languages. pp. 41. In _Proceedings_ of the American
     Philosophical Society, 1885.

     3. Characteristics of American Languages. _American Antiquarian_,
     January, 1894.

     4. On certain morphologic traits in American Languages. _American
     Antiquarian_, October, 1894.

     5. On various supposed relations between the American and Asiatic
     Races. _Memoirs_ of the International Congress of Anthropology,

     6. The Present Status of American Linguistics. _Memoirs_ of the
     International Congress of Anthropology, 1893.

     7. American Languages and why we should Study them. An address
     delivered before the Pennsylvania Historical Society. pp. 23. In
     _Pennsylvania Magazine of History and Biography_, 1885.

     8. The Rate of Change in American Languages. In _Science_, Vol. X.,

     9. Traits of Primitive Speech, illustrated from American languages.
     In _Proceedings_ of the American Association for the Advancement of
     Science, August, 1888.

     10. The Language of Palæolithic Man. pp. 14. In _Proceedings_ of
     the American Philosophical Society, October, 1888.

     11. The American Race: A Linguistic Classification and Ethnographic
     Description of the Native Tribes of North and South America. pp.
     392. New York, 1891.

     12. The Standard Dictionary (Indian Words in). New York, 1894.

     13. Aboriginal American Authors and their Productions, especially
     those in the Native Languages. pp. 63. Philadelphia, 1883.

     14. American Aboriginal Poetry. pp. 21. In _Proceedings_ of the
     Numismatic and Antiquarian Society of Philadelphia, 1883.

     15. The Conception of Love in some American Languages. pp. 18. In
     _Proceedings_ of the American Philosophical Society, November,

The earlier numbers, (1-4,) in the above list are occupied with the
inquiry whether the native American languages, as a group, have peculiar
morphological traits, which justify their classification as one of the
great divisions of human speech. In this question, I have been a
disciple of Wilhelm von Humboldt and Professor H. Steinthal, and have
argued that the phenomenon of Incorporation, in some of its forms, is
markedly present in the vast majority, if not in all, American tongues.
That which has been called "polysynthesis" is one of these forms. This
is nothing more than a familiar, nigh universal, grammatic process
carried to an extreme degree. It is the _dvanda_ of the Sanscrit
grammarians, an excellent study of which has recently appeared from the
pen of Dr. H. C. Müller.[6-1] In its higher forms Incorporation
subordinates the nominal concepts of the phrase to those of time and
relation, which are essentially verbal, and this often where the true
verbal concept, that of abstract action, is lacking, and the verb itself
is in reality a noun in the possessive relation.[6-2][TN-1]

Even extremely simple American languages, such as the Zoque, display the
tendency to energetic synthesis;[6-3] while many of them carry the
incorporative quality to such a degree that the sentence becomes one
word, a good example of which is the Micmac.[6-4] Some American and
French writers have misunderstood the nature of this trait, and have
denied it; but the student who acquaints himself thoroughly with the
authors above mentioned, will not be misled.[6-5]

The MS. of the Memoir by W. von Humboldt I obtained from the Berlin
Library. Even Professor Steinthal, in his edition of Humboldt's
linguistic Works, had overlooked it. It is a highly philosophic analysis
of the verb, as it occurs in the languages of the following tribes:
Abipones, Achaguas, Betoyas, Caribs, Huastecas, Lules, Maipures, Mayas,
Mbayas, Mexicans (Nahuas), Mixtecas, Mocovis, Omaguas, Otomis,
Tamanacas, Totonacos, Tupis, Yaruros.

In (5) I have examined the various alleged affiliations between American
and Asiatic tongues, and showed they are wholly unfounded.

In (7) I have entered a plea for more attention to American languages.
Not only for ethnographic purposes are they useful, but their primitive
aspects and methods of presenting ideas enable us to solve psychological
and grammatic problems more completely than other tongues.

In support of this, in (9) and (10), I endeavor to outline what must
have been the morphology of the language which man spoke when in the
very beginning of his existence as man; a speech of marvelous
simplicity, but adapted to his wants.

The volume, of nearly four hundred pages, entitled _The American Race_
(No. 11) was the first attempt at a systematic classification of all the
tribes of America, North, Central and South, on the basis of language.
It defines seventy-nine linguistic stocks in North America and sixty-one
in South America. The number of tribes named and referred to these
stocks is nearly sixteen hundred. Several of these stocks are defined
for the first time, such as the Tequistlatecan of Mexico, the Matagalpan
of Central America, and in South America the Timote, the Paniquita, the
Cocanuca, the Mocoa, the Betoya, the Lamuca, etc.

In the article (8) I show that, contrary to an oft expressed opinion,
the rate of change in these unwritten tongues is remarkably slow, not
greater than in cultivated languages.

When the publishers of the _Standard Dictionary_ (New York, 1895) were
preparing that well-known work, they placed in my hands all the words in
the English language derived from the native tongues of America.
Although the etymology of some of them remains obscure, I believe the
derivation of all positively traced will be found presented.

I early became convinced that the translations of books of devotion,
etc., into the native tongues gave no correct impression of those
tongues. The ideas conveyed were foreign to the primitive mind, and the
translations were generally by foreigners who had not completely
mastered the idioms. Hence, the only true reflex of a language is in the
words and thoughts of the natives themselves, in their indigenous

This led me to project the publication of a series of volumes containing
writings, preferably on secular subjects, by natives in their own
languages. That there is such a literature I undertook to show in (13)
and (14). The former was the expansion of a paper presented to the
International Congress of Americanists at Copenhagen. It contains a list
of native American authors and notices of a number of their works
composed in their own tongues. That on "aboriginal poetry" vindicates
for native American bards a respectable position among lyric and
dramatic composers.

That some of the central subjects of poetic literature--the emotions of
love and friendship--exist, and often in no low form of sentiment, among
these natives, I have undertaken to show by an analysis of a number of
terms expressing these feelings in five leading American linguistic
stocks, the Algonkin, Nahuatl, Maya, Quechua and Tupi (No. 15).

Following out this plan, I began in 1882 the publication of "The Library
of Aboriginal American Literature." Each volume was to contain a work
composed in a native tongue by a native; but those based upon foreign
inspiration, such as sermons, etc., were to be excluded. Each was to be
translated and edited with sufficient completeness to make it available
for the general student.

Of this "Library" eight volumes were issued, the first in 1882, the
eighth in 1890, when I ceased the publication, not from lack of
material, but because I had retired in 1887 from my connection with the
publishing business and became more engaged in general anthropological

The "Library," as issued, contains the following numbers:

No. I. The Chronicles of the Mayas. Edited by Daniel G. Brinton, M. D.
279 pages. 1882.

    This volume contains five brief chronicles in the Maya language,
      written shortly after the conquest, and carrying the history of
      that people back many centuries. To these is added a history of
      the conquest, written in his native tongue, by a Maya chief, in
      1562. This interesting account has been published separately, with
      an excellent grammatical and lexical analysis by the Count de
      Charencey, under the title _Chrestomathie Maya, d'après la
      Chronique de Chac-Xulub-Chen_ (Paris, 1891). The texts are
      preceded by an introduction on the history of the Mayas, their
      language, calendar, numerical system, etc.; and a vocabulary is
      added at the close.

No. II. The Iroquois Book of Rites. Edited by Horatio Hale. 222 pages.

    This work contains, in the Mohawk and Onondaga languages, the
      speeches, songs and rituals with which a deceased chief was
      lamented and his successor installed in office. The introduction
      treats of the ethnology and history of the Huron-Iroquois. A map,
      notes and glossary complete the work.

No. III. The Comedy-Ballet of Güegüence. Edited by Daniel G. Brinton, M.
D. 146 pages. 1883.

    A curious and unique specimen of the native comic dances, with
      dialogues, called _bailes_, formerly common in Central America. It
      is in the mixed Nahuatl-Spanish jargon of Nicaragua, and shows
      distinctive features of native authorship. The introduction treats
      of the ethnology of Nicaragua, and the local dialects, musical
      instruments and dramatic representations. A map and a number of
      illustrations are added.

No. IV. A Migration Legend of the Creek Indians. Edited by A. S.
Gatschet. 251 pages. 1884.

    Offers a survey of the ethnology of the native tribes of the Gulf
      States. The legend told to Governor Oglethorpe, in 1732, by the
      Creeks, is given in the original.

No. V. The Lenâpé and Their Legends. Edited by Daniel G. Brinton, M. D.
262 pages. 1885.

    Contains the complete text and symbols, 184 in number, of the "Walum
      Olum," or "Red Score," of the Delaware Indians, with the full
      original text, and a new translation, notes and vocabulary. A
      lengthy introduction treats of the Lenâpé or Delawares, their
      history, customs, myths, language, etc., with numerous references
      to other tribes of the great Algonkin stock.

No. VI. The Annals of the Cakchiquels. Edited by Daniel G. Brinton, M.
D. 234 pages. 1885.

    The original text, written about 1562, by a member of the reigning
      family, with a translation, introduction, notes and vocabulary.
      This may be considered one of the most important historical
      documents relating to the pre-Columbian period.

No. VII. Ancient Nahuatl Poetry. Edited by Daniel G. Brinton, M. D. 176
pages. 1890.

    In this volume twenty-seven songs in the original Nahuatl are
      presented, with translation, notes, vocabulary, etc. Many of them
      date from before the conquest and none later than the sixteenth
      century. The introduction describes the ancient poetry of the
      Nahuas in all its bearings.

No. VIII. Rig Veda Americanus. Edited by Daniel G. Brinton, M. D. 95
pages. 1890.

    Presents the original text with a gloss in Nahuatl of twenty sacred
      chants of the ancient Mexicans. They are preserved in the Madrid
      MSS. of Father Sahagun, and date anterior to the Conquest. A
      paraphrase, notes and a vocabulary are added, and a number of
      curious illustrations are reproduced from the original.

The edition of each of these was about 400 copies, except No. II., of
which 900 were printed. A complete set is now difficult to obtain.


     16. Lenâpé-English Dictionary. From an anonymous MS. in the
     archives of the Moravian Church at Bethlehem, Pa., with additions,
     by Daniel G. Brinton and Rev. Albert Seqaqkind Anthony, 4to, pp.
     326. Philadelphia, 1888. Published by the Historical Society of

     17. The Lenâpé and their Legends; with the complete Text and
     Symbols of the Walum Olum, a new Translation and an Inquiry into
     its Authenticity. pp. 262. Illustrated. Philadelphia, 1885.

     18. Lenâpé Conversations. In _American Journal of Folk-Lore_, Vol.

     19. The Shawnees and their Migrations. In _American Historical
     Magazine_, January, 1866.

     20. The Chief God of the Algonkins, in his Character as a Cheat and
     Liar. In the _American Antiquarian_, May, 1885.

     21. On certain supposed Nanticoke words shown to be of African
     origin. _American Antiquarian_, 1887.

     22. Vocabulary of the Nanticoke dialect. Proceedings of the
     _American Philosophical Society_, November, 1893.

     23. The Natchez of Louisiana, an Offshoot of the Civilized Nations
     of Central America. In the _Historical Magazine_ (New York), for
     January, 1867.

     24. On the Language of the Natchez. In _Proceedings_ of the
     American Philosophical Society, December, 1873.

     25. Grammar of the Choctaw Language. By the Rev. Cyrus Byington.
     Edited from the original MS. by D. G. Brinton. pp. 56. In
     _Proceedings_ of the American Philosophical Society, 1870.

     26. Contributions to a Grammer[TN-2] of the Muskokee Language. In
     _Proceedings_ of the American Philosophical Society, March, 1870.

     27. The Floridian Peninsula, its Literary History, Indian Tribes,
     and Antiquities. 8vo, cloth, pp. 202. Philadelphia, 1859.

     28. The Taensa Grammar and Dictionary. A deception exposed. In
     _American Antiquarian_, March, 1885.

     29. The Taensa Grammar and Dictionary. A reply to M. Lucien Adam.
     In _American Antiquarian_, September, 1885.

Within the area of the United States, my articles have been confined
practically to two groups, the Algonkian dialects and those spoken in
Florida and the Gulf States.

The Delaware Indians or Lenni Lenâpé, who occupied the valley of the
Delaware River and the land east of it to the ocean, although long in
peaceful association with the white settlers, were never studied,
linguistically, except by the Moravian missionaries, in the latter half
of the eighteenth century. In examining the MSS. in the Moravian Church
at Bethlehem, Pa., I discovered a MS. dictionary of their tongue,
containing about 4,300 words. This I had carefully copied, and induced a
native Delaware, an educated clergyman of the English Church, the Rev.
Albert Seqaqkind Anthony, to pass a fortnight at my house, going over it
with me, word by word. The MS. thus revised, was published by the
Historical Society of Pennsylvania as the first number of its "Student
Series." Various interesting items illustrating the beliefs and customs
of the Delawares of the present day, communicated to me by Mr. Anthony,
I collected into the article (18), "Lenâpé Conversations."

A few years previous I had succeeded in obtaining the singular MS.
referred to by C. S. Rafinesque, in 1836, as the "Painted Record" of the
Delaware Indians, the _Walum Olum,_ properly, "painted" or "red"
"score." This I reproduced in No. 17, with the accessories mentioned
above (p. 9). There is no doubt of the general authenticity of this
record. A corroboration of it was sent me in March of this year (1898)
by Dr. A. S. Gatschet, of the U. S. Bureau of American Ethnology. He

"When the Delaware delegate, Johnnycake, was here for the last time, he
told Mr. J. B. N. Hewitt (also attached to the Bureau) that some of the
Lenâpé Indians, near Nowata, Cherokee Nation, had seen your publication
on the _Walum Olum_. They belong to the oldest men of that tribe, and
stated that the text was all right, and that they remembered the songs
from their youth. They could give many additions, and said that a few
passages were in the wrong order and had to be placed elsewhere to give
them the full meaning they were intended to convey."

This was cheering confirmation to me that my labor had not been expended
on a fantastic composition of Rafinesque's, as some have been inclined
to think.

Some years ago I contemplated the publication of a work through the
American Folklore Society on Algonquian Mythology. Various reasons led
me to lay it aside. Part of the material was introduced into my works on
the general mythology of the American tribes,[12-1] and one fragment
appeared in (20) in which I offered a psychological explanation of the
character of the hero god Gluscap, so prominent in the legends of the
Micmacs and Abenakis. At that time I was not acquainted with the
ingenious suggestions on the etymology of the name subsequently
advocated by the native author, Joseph Nicolar.[12-2]

The Nanticokes lived on the eastern shore of Chesapeake Bay. In
collecting their vocabularies I found one alleged to have been obtained
from them, but differing completely from the Algonquian dialects. It had
been partly printed by Dr. Benjamin Smith Barton,[12-3] but remained a
puzzle. My article (21) proves that it belongs to the Mandingo language
of western Africa. It was doubtless obtained from some negro slave.

The Nanticoke vocabulary (22) was secured in 1792 for Mr. Thomas
Jefferson. I give the related terms in the other dialects of the stock.

The Natchez are an interesting people of whose rites we have strange
accounts from the early French explorers. Their language is a small
stock by itself. At one time I thought it related to the Maya (23); but
this is probably an error. In (24) I printed a vocabulary of words
obtained for me from a native, together with some slight grammatical

The Taensas were a branch of the Natchez, speaking the same tongue; but
in 1881, J. Parisot presented an article of half a dozen pages to the
International Congress of Americanists on what he called the "Hastri or
Taensa Language," totally different from the Natchez.[13-1] Subsequently
this was expanded to a volume, and appeared as Tome IX. of the
_Bibliothêque Linguistique Américaine_ (Maisonneuve et Cie, Paris)
introduced by the well-known scholars Lucien Adam and Albert S.

It passed unchallenged until 1885, when I proved conclusively that the
whole was a forgery of some young seminarists, and had been palmed off
on these unsuspecting scientists out of a pleasure in mystification
(28). As I have given the details elsewhere, I shall not repeat

The works of Pareja in the Timuquana tongue of Florida were unknown to
linguists when, in 1859, I published the little volume (27). In it,
however, I called attention to them, and from the scanty references in
Hervas expressed the opinion that it might be related to the Carib. This
was an error, as no such affinity appears on the fuller examination of
the tongue now possible, since Pareja's grammar has been
republished,[13-3] and texts of the Timuquana have been reproduced by
Buckingham Smith.[13-4] The language stands alone, an independent stock.


     30. The Native Calendar of Central America and Mexico. In
     _Proceedings_ of the American Philosophical Society, November,

     31. The Lineal Measures of the Semi-civilized Nations of Mexico and
     Central America. In _Proceedings_ of the American Philosophical
     Society, January, 1885.

     32. On the Chontallis and Popolucas. In the Compte Rendu du Congrés
     des Américanistes, 1890.

     33. The Study of the Nahuatl Language. In the _American
     Antiquarian_, January, 1886.

     34. The Written Language of the Ancient Mexicans. In _Transactions_
     of the American Philosophical Society, 1889.

     35. The ancient phonetic alphabet of Yucatan. In _American
     Historical Magazine_, 1870.

     36. The Graphic System and ancient Records of the Mayas. In
     _Contributions to American Ethnology_, Vol. V., Washington, 1882.

     37. The Phonetic Elements in the Graphic Systems of the Mayas and
     Mexicans. In _American Antiquarian_, November, 1886.

     38. On the "Ikonomatic" Method of Phonetic Writing. In
     _Proceedings_ of the American Philosophical Society, 1886.

     39. A Primer of Mayan Hieroglyphics. pp. 152. Boston, 1895.

     40. What the Mayan Inscriptions tell about. In _American
     Archæologist_, 1894.

     41. On the "Stone of the Giants" near Orizaba, Mexico. In
     _Proceedings_ of the Numismatic and Antiquarian Society of
     Philadelphia, 1889.

     42. On the Nahuatl version of Sahagun's Historia de la Nueva
     España, at Madrid. In the _Compte Rendu_ of the Congrés
     International des Americanistes, 7^eme Session.

     43. On the words "Anahuac" and "Nahuatl." In _American
     Antiquarian_, November, 1893.

     44. On the so-called Alagüilac Language of Guatemala. In
     _Proceedings_ of the American Philosophical Society, November,

     45. The Güegüence; a Comedy Ballet in the Nahuatl-Spanish Dialect
     of Nicaragua. pp 94. Philadelphia, 1883.

     46. Ancient Nahuatl Poetry; Containing the Nahuatl Text of
     Twenty-seven Ancient Mexican Poems; With Translation, Introduction,
     Notes and Vocabulary. pp. 177. 1887.

     47. Rig Veda Americanus. Sacred Songs of the Ancient Mexicans, with
     a Gloss in Nahuatl. With Paraphrase, Notes and Vocabulary. pp. 95.
     Illustrated. Philadelphia, 1890.

     48. A notice of some Manuscripts of Central American Languages. In
     the _American Journal of Science and Arts_ (New Haven), March,

     49. The Maya Chronicles. pp. 279. Philadelphia, 1882.

     50. The Books of Chilan Balam, the Prophetic and Historic Records
     of the Mayas of Yucatan. In the _Penn Monthly_, March, 1882.

     51. The Names of the Gods in the Kiche Myths. pp. 38. In
     _Proceedings_ of the American Philosophical Society, 1881.

     52. On the Chane-abal (Four-Language) Tribe and Dialect of Chiapas.
     In the _American Anthropologist_, January, 1888.

     53. A Grammar of the Cakchiquel Language of Guatemala. Translated
     from an Ancient Spanish MS., with an Introduction and numerous
     Additions. pp. 67. In _Proceedings_ of the American Philosophical
     Society, 1884.

     54. The Annals of the Cakchiquels. The Original text, with a
     Translation, Notes and Introduction. pp. 234. Illustrated.
     Philadelphia, 1885.

     55. On some Affinities of the Otomi and Tinné Stocks. International
     Congress of Americanists, 1894.

     56. Observations on the Chinantec Language of Mexico and the
     Mazatec Language and its Affinities. In _Proceedings_ of the
     American Philosophical Society, 1892.

     57. Notes on the Mangue dialect. In _Proceedings_ of the American
     Philosophical Society, November, 1885.

     58. On the Xinca Indians of Guatemala. In _Proceedings_ of the
     American Philosophical Society, October, 1884.

     59. The Ethnic Affinities of the Guetares of Costa Rica. In
     _Proceedings_ of the American Philosophical Society, December,

     60. On the Matagalpan Linguistic Stock of Central America. In
     _Proceedings_ of the American Philosophical Society, December,

     61. Some Vocabularies from the Mosquito Coast. In _Proceedings_ of
     the American Philosophical Society, March, 1891.

The _Popol Vuh_, or "sacred book" of the Quiches of Guatemala was
published by the Abbé Brasseur in 1861. The study (51) is an effort to
analyze the names of the gods which it contains and to extract their
symbolic significance.

The Chane-abal dialect of Chiapas (52) is a mixed jargon, the component
elements of which I have endeavored to set forth from MS. material
collected by Dr. Berendt.

Another language of Chiapas is the "Chapanecan." In (57) and also in the
introduction to (45) I have shown, from unpublished sources, its close
relationship to the Mangue of Nicaragua.

The Mazatec language of Oaxaca, is examined for the first time in (56)
from material supplied me by Mr. A. Pinart. It is shown to have
relations with the Chapanecan and others with Costa Rican tongues.

The article on the Chinantec, (56) a little-known tongue of Oaxaca, is
an analysis of its forms and a vocabulary from the _Doctrina_ of Father
Barreda and notes of Dr. Berendt.

The Cakchiquels occupied most of the soil of Guatemala at the period of
the Conquest, and their tongue was that chosen to be the "Metropolitan"
language of the diocess. In (53) I gave a translation of an unpublished
grammar of it, the MS. being one in the archives of the American
Philosophical Society. In some respects it is superior to the grammar of

The higher culture of the tribes of Central America and Mexico gives a
special interest to the study of their languages, oral and written; for
with some of them we find moderately well-developed methods of recording

Much of this culture was intimately connected with their astrological
methods and these with their calendar. This remarkable artificial
computation of time, based on the relations of the numerals 13 and 20
applied to various periods, was practically the same among the Mayas,
Nahuas, Zapotecs, Mixtecs, Chapanecs, Otomis and Tarascos--seven
different linguistic stocks--and unknown elsewhere on the globe. The
study of it (30) is exclusively from its linguistic and symbolic side.

It is strange that nowhere in North America was any measure of weight
known to the natives. Their lineal measures were drawn chiefly from the
proportions of the human body. They are investigated in (31).

Under the names _Chontalli_ and _Popoluca_, both Nahuatl words
indicating "foreigners," ethnographers have included tribes of wholly
diverse lineage. In (32) I have shown that some are Tzentals, others
Tequistlatecas, Ulvas, Mixes, Zapotecs, Nahuas, Lencas and Cakchiquels,
thus doing away with the confusion introduced by these inappropriate
ethnic terms.

No. (33) is an article for the use of students of the Nahuatl language,
mentioning the principal grammars, dictionaries and text-books which are

The numbers (34), (35), (36), (37), (38), (39), (40) and (41), are
devoted to the methods of writing invented by the cultured natives of
Mexico and Central America in order to preserve their literature, such
as it was. The methods are various, that of the Nahuas not being
identical with that of the Mayas. The former is largely phonetic, but in
a peculiar manner, for which I have proposed the term of "ikonomatic,"
the principle being that of the rebus. That this method can be
successfully applied to the decipherment of inscriptions I demonstrated
in the translation of one which is quite celebrated, the "Stone of the
Giants" at Orizaba, Mexico (41). The translation I proposed has been
fully accepted.[16-1]

The "Primer of Mayan Hieroglyphics" (39) was intended as a summary of
what had been achieved up to that time (1895) by students in this
branch. It endeavored, moreover, to render to each student the credit of
his independent work; and as, unfortunately, some, notably in Germany,
had put forward as their own what belonged to others of earlier date,
the book naturally was not very well treated by such reviewers. Its aim,
however, to present a concise and fair statement of what had been
accomplished in its field up to the date of its publication was
generally conceded to have been attained.

Much of the considerable manuscript material which I have accumulated on
the languages of this section of the continent was obtained from the
collections of the late Dr. Carl Hermann Berendt and the Abbé E. C.
Brasseur (de Bourbourg).

When in Spain, in 1888, I found in the Royal Library the MS. of the
earlier portion of Sahagun's "History of New Spain" in Nahuatl. I
described it in (42).

The term "Anahuac" has long been applied to the territory of Mexico. Dr.
E. Seler, of Berlin, published an article asserting that this was an
error, and devoid of native authority. In (43) I pointed out that in
this he was wrong, as early Nahuatl records use it in this sense.

The Alaguilac language of Guatemala, long a puzzle to linguistics, is
shown in (44) to be an isolated dialect of the Nahuatl.

Nos. (45), (46), (47), (49) and (54), have been already mentioned.

The term _Chilan balam_, which may be freely rendered "the inspired
speaker," was the title of certain priests of the native Mayas. Many
records in the Maya tongue, written after the conquests, go by the name
of "the Books of Chilan Balam." They have never been published, but
copies of them, made by Dr. Berendt, are in my possession. Their purpose
and contents were described in (50).

There are reasons for believing that previous to the arrival of the
Cakchiquels in Guatemala its area was largely peopled by Xincas. Of this
little-known stock I present in (58) three extended vocabularies, from
unpublished sources, with comments on the "culture-words."

Some apparent but no decisive affinities between the Otomi of Mexico
and the Tinné or Athapascan dialects are shown in (55); and in (59) the
ancient Guetares of Costa Rica are proved, on linguistic evidence, to
have been members of the Talamancan linguistic stock.

The Matagalpan is an interesting family, first defined in _The American
Race_, and in (60) more fully discussed, as they survive in San

In (61) some unpublished vocabularies from the tribe of the Ramas, on
the Mosquito coast, place them as members of the Changuina stock, most
of whom dwelt on the Isthmus of Panama.


     62. Remarks on the MS. Arawack Vocabulary of Schultz. In
     _Proceedings_ of the American Philosophical Society, 1869.

     63. The Arawack Language of Guiana in its Linguistic and
     Ethnological Relations. In _Transactions_ of the American
     Philosophical Society, 1871.

     64. Studies in South American Languages. pp. 67. In _Proceedings_
     of the American Philosophical Society, 1892.

     65. Some words from the Andagueda dialect of the Choco stock. In
     _Proceedings_ of American Philosophical Society, November, 1897.

     66. Vocabulary of the Noanama dialect of the Choco stock. In
     _Proceedings_ of the American Philosophical Society, November,

     67. Note on the Puquina Language of Peru. In _Proceedings_ of the
     American Philosophical Society, November, 1890.

     68. Further Notes on the Betoya dialects. In _Proceedings_ of the
     American Philosophical Society, October, 1892.

     69. The Linguistic Cartography of the Chaco Region. In
     _Proceedings_ of the American Philosophical Society, October, 1898.

     70. Further Notes on Fuegian Languages. In _Proceedings_ of the
     American Philosophical Society, 1892.

     71. On two recent, unclassified Vocabularies from South America. In
     _Proceedings_ of the American Philosophical Society, October, 1898.

The library of the American Philosophical Society contains a MS. copy of
the Arawack vocabulary of the missionary Schultz, the same work,
apparently, which was edited from another copy by M. Lucien Adam in
1882. A study of this MS. led me to discover the identity of the
so-called "Lucayan" of the Bahamas, the language of Cuba, fragments of
which have been presented, and the "Taino" of Haiti, with the Arawack.
They had previously been considered either of Mayan or Caribbean
affinities. The results are presented in (63).

The "Studies" in (64) are ten in number. No. I. is on the Tacana
language and its dialects, and is the only attempt, up to the present
time, to determine the boundaries and character of this tongue. Texts
and a vocabulary in five of its dialects are given. No. II. is on the
Jivaro or Xebero tongue, and is entirely from unpublished sources. A
grammatical sketch, texts and a vocabulary give a moderately complete
material for comparison. No. III. presents the first printed account of
the Cholona language on the River Huallaga, drawn from MSS. in the
British Museum. In No. IV. is a discussion of the relations of the Leca
language spoken on the Rio Mapiri. No. V. contains a text of some length
in the Manao dialect of the Arawack stock, the original MS. being in the
British Museum. The Bonaris are an extinct tribe of the Carib stock. No.
VI. contains the only vocabulary which has been preserved of their
dialect. On a loose sheet in the British Museum, among papers on
Patagonia, I found a short vocabulary in a tongue called "Hongote,"
which I could not locate and hence published it in No. VII. It
subsequently proved to be one of the North Pacific Coast languages. The
same "Study" presents a comparative vocabulary in fourteen Patagonian
dialects, with notes (Tsoneca, Tehuelche, Puelche, Tekennika (Yahgan),
Alikuluf, etc.). In Study No. VIII. are discussed the various dialects
of the Kechua or Quichua tongue of Peru, with an unpublished text from
the Pacasa dialect. No. IX. examines the affinities which have been
noted between the languages of North and South America, especially in
the Mazatec and Costa Rican dialects of the northern Continent. Finally,
No. X. aims to define for the first time the linguistic stock to which
belong the dialects of the Betoyas, Tucanos, Zeonas and other tribes on
the rivers Napo, Meta, Apure and their confluents. Further information
on this stock is given in (68).

The Choco stock extends widely over the northwest angle of the southern
continent. In (65) and (66) I have printed short vocabularies of some of
its dialects secured for me from living natives by Mr. Henry G.

The Puquina language of Peru was quite unknown to linguists when, in
1890, I published the article (67) containing material in it from the
extremely rare work of Geronimo de Ore, entitled _Rituale Peruanum_
(Naples, 1607). Since then an extended essay upon it has been written by
M. de la Grasserie.

In the "Further Notes on the Fuegian Languages" (70), I have printed an
Alikuluf vocabulary of 1695, with comparisons, and given a vocabulary of
the idiom of the Onas, pointing out some affinities with the Yahgan.

Few linguistic areas on the continent have been more obscure than that
called "El Gran Chaco," in northern Argentina and southern Bolivia. In
(69) I have mapped the area from 20° to 30° south latitude and 56° to
66° west longitude, defining the boundaries of each of the seven
linguistic stocks which occupied it, to wit, the Ennima, Guaycuru, Lule,
Mataco, Quechua, Samucu and Tupi, with discussions of some uncertain
dialects, as the Calchaqui, Lengua, Querandi, Charua, Payagua.

In (70) recent vocabularies of the Andoa and Cataquina tongues are
examined and their linguistic relations discussed.

Many of the above articles, written previous to 1890, were collected by
me in that year and published in a volume entitled "Essays of an
Americanist" (pp. 489. Philadelphia). For the convenience of those who
may wish to refer to them I add here a complete list of the essays which
it contains.

     PART I.--ETHNOLOGIC AND ARCHÆOLOGIC.--A Review of the Data for the
     Study of the Prehistoric Chronology of America. On Palæoliths,
     American and others. On the alleged Mongolian Affinities of the
     American Race. The Probable Nationality of the Mound-Builders of
     the Ohio Valley. The Toltecs of Mexico and their Fabulous Empire.

     PART II.--MYTHOLOGY AND FOLK-LORE.--The Sacred Names in the
     Mythology of the Quiches of Guatemala. The Hero-God of the
     Algonkins as a Cheat and Liar. The Journey of the Soul in Egyptian,
     Aryan and American Mythology. The Sacred Symbols of the Cross, the
     Svastika and the Triqetrum in America. The Modern Folk-lore of the
     Natives of Yucatan. The Folk-lore of the Modern Lênapé Indians.

     in the Hieroglyphs of the Mayas and Mexicans. The Ikonomatic Method
     of Phonetic Writing used by the Ancient Mexicans. The Writings and
     Records of the Ancient Mayas of Yucatan. The Books of Chilan
     Balam, the Sacred Volume of the Modern Mayas. Translation of the
     Inscription on "The Stone of The Giants" at Orizaba, Mexico. The
     Poetry of the American Indians, with Numerous Examples.

     PART IV.--LINGUISTIC.--American Aboriginal Languages, and why we
     should study them. Wilhelm von Humboldt's Researches in American
     Languages. Some Characteristics of American Languages. The Earliest
     Form of Human Speech, as Revealed by American Languages. The
     Conception of Love, as expressed in some American Languages. The
     Lineal Measures of the Semi-Civilized Nations of Mexico and Central
     America. The Curious Hoax about the Taensa Language.


[6-1] _Beiträge zur Lehre der Wortzusammensetzung._ Leiden. 1896.

[6-2] In this connection I would refer students to an instructive
passage of Heinrich Wrinkler on "Die Hauptformen in den Amerikanischen
Sprachen," in his work _Zur Sprachgeschichte_ (Berlin, 1887) and to his
essay on the Pokonchi Language in his _Weiteres zur Sprachgeschichte_,
(Berlin, 1889).

[6-3] See my remarks on this tongue in the _American Anthropologist_,
August, 1898, p. 251.

[6-4] Interesting examples in the Preface to S. T. Rand's _Micmac
Dictionary_ (Halifax, 1888).

[6-5] Notably with Steinthal's _Charakteristik des hauptsächlichsten
Typen des Sprachbaues._

[12-1] _The Myths of the New World_ (third edition, 1896); _American
Hero Myths_ (1881).

[12-2] _Life and Traditions of the Red Man_ (Bangor, 1893).

[12-3] _New Views of the Origin of the Tribes of America_ (Philadelphia,

[13-1] _Actas del Congreso Internacional de Americanistas_, Tom. II.,
pp. 310-315.

[13-2] See the article "The Curious Hoax of the Taensa Language," in my
_Essays of an Americanist_, pp. 452-467. (Philadelphia, 1890.)

[13-3] In Tome XI., of the _Bibliothêque Linguistique Américaine_.

[13-4] Privately printed, 1867.

[16-1] See Garrick Mallery in _10th Annual Report of the Bureau of
Ethnology_, pp. 133, sqq. (Washington, 1893).


  Abenakis, 12

  Abipones, 6

  Achaguas, 6

  Adam, L., 13, 18

  Alaguilac language, 17

  Algonkin, 8, 11

  Algonquian mythology, 12

  Alikuluf, 19, 20

  American Authors, Aboriginal, 8

  American languages, 6

  American Race, the, 7

  Americanists, Congress of, 8

  "Anahuac", 17

  Andagueda, 18

  Andoa, 20

  Anthony, A. S., 11

  Antillean languages, 18

  Arawack, 18, 19

  Asiatic analogies, 7

  _Bailes_, 9

  Barton, B. S., 12

  Berendt, C. H., 15, 17

  Betoya, 6, 7, 19

  Bonaris, 19

  Brasseur, E. C., 15, 17

  Byington, C., 10

  Cakchiquels, 9, 16

  Calchaqui, 20

  Calendar, native, 16

  Carib, 6, 13, 19

  Cataquina, 20

  Chaco, el Gran, 20

  Chane-abal language, 15

  Changuina, 18

  Chapanecs, 15

  Charua, 20

  Chiapas, 15

  Chilan Balam, 17

  Chinantec, 15

  Choco, 19

  Choctaw Grammar, 10

  Cholona, 19

  Chontallis, 16

  Cocanuca, 7

  Costa Rica, 7, 18

  Creeks, 9

  Cuba, language of, 18

  Delaware, 9, 11

  _Dvanda_, the, 6

  Ennima, 20

  Floridian Peninsula, 13

  Fuegian languages, 20

  Gatschet, A. S., 9, 11, 13

  Gluscap, 12

  Gods, names of, 15

  Granger, H. G., 19

  Grasserie, R., 20

  Guatemala, 15, 17

  Guaycuru, 20

  Güegüence, 9

  Guetares, 18

  Haiti, language of, 18

  Hale, H., 9

  "Hastri" language, 13

  Hongote, 19

  Huasteca, 6

  Humboldt, W. von, 6

  Huron, 9

  "Ikonomatic" method, the, 16

  Incorporation, 6

  Iroquois, 9

  Johnnycake, 11

  Jefferson, T., 12

  Jivaro, 19

  Kechua, 19

  Kiche myths, 15

  Leca, 19

  Lenâpé, 9, 11

  Lenâpé Dictionary, 11

  Lenâpé Conversations, 11

  Lencas, 16

  Lengua, 20

  Library of Aborig. Literature, 8

  Lineal Measures, 16

  Love, Conception of, 8

  Lucayan, 18

  Lule, 6, 20

  Maipure, 6

  Manao, 19

  Mandingo language, 12

  Mangue, 15

  Mata co, 20

  Matagalpan, 7

  Maya, 6, 8, 16

  Mayan Hieroglyphics, 16

  Mayan Inscriptions, 14

  Mazatec, 19

  Mbaya, 6

  Measures, lineal, 16

  Mexican, 6

  Micmacs, 6

  Mixes, 16

  Mixteca, 7, 16

  Mocoa, 7

  Mocovi, 7

  Mohawk, 9

  Morphology of Amer. Langs., 6

  Mosquito Coast[TN-3]

  Muller,[TN-4] H. C., 6

  Muskokee, 11

  Mythology, American, 12

  Myths of New World, 12

  Nahuatl, 6, 8, 10

  Nahuatl-Spanish jargon, 9

  Nanticoke, 12

  Natchez, 12

  Nicaragua, 15

  Nicolar, J., 12

  Noanama, 18

  Omagua, 7

  Onas, 20

  Onondaga, 9

  Ore, G. de, 20

  Otomi, 7.[TN-5] 16, 17

  Pacasa, 19

  Paniquita, 7

  Pareja, F., 13

  Payagua, 20

  Pilling, J. C., 4

  Pinart, A., 15

  Poetry, Aboriginal, 8

  Polysynthesis, 6

  Popolucas, 16

  Primitive speech, 7

  Puelche, 19

  Puquina, 20

  Querandi, 20

  Quiche, 15

  Quechua, 8, 19, 20

  Rafinesque, C. S., 11

  Ramas, 18

  Rand, S. F., 6

  Rate of change, 7

  Rebus writing, 16

  Red Score, the, 9, 11

  Rig Veda Americanus, 10

  Sahagun, 10, 17

  Samucu, 20

  Schultz, Rev., 18

  Shawnees, 19

  Smith, B., 13

  Standard Dictionary, the, 7

  Steinthal, H., 6

  "Stone of the Giants", 16

  Svastika, the, 20

  Tacana, 19

  Taensa, 13

  Taino, 18

  Tamanaca, 6

  Tarascos, 16

  Tehuelche, 19

  Teknnika, 19

  Tequistlatecan, 7

  Timote., 7

  Timuquana, 13

  Tinné, 18

  Toltecs, the, 20

  Totonaco, 6

  Triquetrum, the, 20

  Tsoneca, 19

  Tucanos, 19

  Tupi, 6, 8, 20

  Tzental, 16

  Ulvas, 16

  Verb, the American, 6

  Walum-Olum, 9, 11

  Winkler, H., 6

  Written language, 16

  Xebero, 19

  Xinca, 17

  Yahgan, 19, 20

  Yaruro, 6

  Yucatan, 14

  Zapotecs, 16

  Zeonas, 19

  Zoque, the, 6

Transcriber's Note

The following misspellings and typographical errors were maintained.

        Page   Error
  TN-1    6    The marker for footnote 6-2 was not printed and has been
               inserted based on context.
  TN-2   11    Grammer should read Grammar
  TN-3   23    Mosquito Coast should read Mosquito Coast, 15, 18
  TN-4   23    Muller, should read Müller
  TN-5   23    Otomi, 7. should read Otomi, 7,

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