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Title: Ancient Society - Researches in the Lines of Human Progress from Savagery, through Barbarism to Civilization
Author: Morgan, Lewis Henry
Language: English
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ANCIENT SOCIETY

Or

Researches in the Lines of Human Progress
from Savagery, through Barbarism
to Civilization

by

LEWIS H. MORGAN, LL.D.

Member of the National Academy of Sciences.
Author of “The League of the Iroquois,” “The American Beaver and his
Works,” “Systems of Consanguinity and Affinity of the Human Family,”
etc.

   _Nescit vox missa reverti._

   HORACE.



[Illustration]

New York
Henry Holt and Company
1877

Copyright, 1877,
By Henry Holt.



  TO THE REVEREND
  J. H. McILVAINE, D.D.,
  LATE PROFESSOR OF BELLES-LETTRES IN PRINCETON COLLEGE,
  THIS VOLUME IS DEDICATED,
  IN RECOGNITION OF HIS GENIUS AND LEARNING,
  AND IN APPRECIATION OF HIS FRIENDSHIP.

    Cum prorepserunt primis animalia terris,
    Mutum et turpe pecus, glandem atque cubilia propter
    Unguibus et pugnis, dein fustibus, atque ita porro
    Pugnabant armis, quæ post fabricaverat usus:
    Donec verba, quibus voces sensusque notarent,
    Nominaque invenere: dehinc absistere bello,
    Oppida coeperunt munire, et ponere leges,
    Ne quis fur esset, neu latro, neu quis adulter.

    —Horace, _Sat._, I, iii, 99.


    “Modern science claims to be proving, by the most careful and
    exhaustive study of man and his works, that our race began
    its existence on earth at the bottom of the scale, instead
    of at the top, and has been gradually working upward; that
    human powers have had a history of development; that all
    the elements of culture—as the arts of life, art, science,
    language, religion, philosophy—have been wrought out by slow
    and painful efforts, in the conflict between the soul and
    the mind of man on the one hand, and external nature on the
    other.”—Whitney’s _Oriental and Linguistic Studies_, p. 341.


    “These communities reflect the spiritual conduct of our
    ancestors thousands of times removed. We have passed through
    the same stages of development, physical and moral, and are
    what we are to-day because they lived, toiled, and endeavored.
    Our wondrous civilization is the result of the silent efforts
    of millions of unknown men, as the chalk cliffs of England are
    formed by contributions of myriads of foraminifera.”—Dr. J.
    Kaines, _Anthropologia_, vol. i, No. 2, p. 233.



PREFACE.


The great antiquity of mankind upon the earth has been conclusively
established. It seems singular that the proofs should have been
discovered as recently as within the last thirty years, and that the
present generation should be the first called upon to recognize so
important a fact.

Mankind are now known to have existed in Europe in the glacial period,
and even back of its commencement, with every probability of their
origination in a prior geological age. They have survived many races
of animals with whom they were contemporaneous, and passed through a
process of development, in the several branches of the human family, as
remarkable in its courses as in its progress.

Since the probable length of their career is connected with geological
periods, a limited measure of time is excluded. One hundred or two
hundred thousand years would be an unextravagant estimate of the period
from the disappearance of the glaciers in the northern hemisphere to
the present time. Whatever doubts may attend any estimate of a period,
the actual duration of which is unknown, the existence of mankind
extends backward immeasurably, and loses itself in a vast and profound
antiquity.

This knowledge changes materially the views which have prevailed
respecting the relations of savages to barbarians, and of barbarians
to civilized men. It can now be asserted upon convincing evidence that
savagery preceded barbarism in all the tribes of mankind, as barbarism
is known to have preceded civilization. The history of the human race
is one in source, one in experience, and one in progress.

It is both a natural and a proper desire to learn, if possible, how all
these ages upon ages of past time have been expended by mankind; how
savages, advancing by slow, almost imperceptible steps, attained the
higher condition of barbarians; how barbarians, by similar progressive
advancement, finally attained to civilization; and why other tribes
and nations have been left behind in the race of progress—some in
civilization, some in barbarism, and others in savagery. It is not too
much to expect that ultimately these several questions will be answered.

Inventions and discoveries stand in serial relations along the lines of
human progress, and register its successive stages; while social and
civil institutions, in virtue of their connection with perpetual human
wants, have been developed from a few primary germs of thought. They
exhibit a similar register of progress. These institutions, inventions
and discoveries have embodied and preserved the principal facts now
remaining illustrative of this experience. When collated and compared
they tend to show the unity of origin of mankind, the similarity of
human wants in the same stage of advancement, and the uniformity of the
operations of the human mind in similar conditions of society.

Throughout the latter part of the period of savagery, and the entire
period of barbarism, mankind in general were organized in gentes,
phratries and tribes. These organizations prevailed throughout
the entire ancient world upon all the continents, and were the
instrumentalities by means of which ancient society was organized and
held together. Their structure, and relations as members of an organic
series, and the rights, privileges and obligations of the members of
the gens, and of the members of the phratry and tribe, illustrate the
growth of the idea of government in the human mind. The principal
institutions of mankind originated in savagery, were developed in
barbarism, and are maturing in civilization.

In like manner, the family has passed through successive forms, and
created great systems of consanguinity and affinity which have remained
to the present time. These systems, which record the relationships
existing in the family of the period, when each system respectively
was formed, contain an instructive record of the experience of
mankind while the family was advancing from the consanguine, through
intermediate forms, to the monogamian.

The idea of property has undergone a similar growth and development.
Commencing at zero in savagery, the passion for the possession of
property, as the representative of accumulated subsistence, has now
become dominant over the human mind in civilized races.

The four classes of facts above indicated, and which extend themselves
in parallel lines along the pathways of human progress from savagery to
civilization, form the principal subjects of discussion in this volume.

There is one field of labor in which, as Americans, we have a special
interest as well as a special duty. Rich as the American continent
is known to be in material wealth, it is also the richest of all the
continents in ethnological, philological and archæological materials,
illustrative of the great period of barbarism. Since mankind were one
in origin, their career has been essentially one, running in different
but uniform channels upon all continents, and very similarly in all the
tribes and nations of mankind down to the same status of advancement.
It follows that the history and experience of the American Indian
tribes represent, more or less nearly, the history and experience of
our own remote ancestors when in corresponding conditions. Forming a
part of the human record, their institutions, arts, inventions and
practical experience possess a high and special value reaching far
beyond the Indian race itself.

When discovered, the American Indian tribes represented three distinct
ethnical periods, and more completely than they were elsewhere then
represented upon the earth. Materials for ethnology, philology and
archæology were offered in unparalleled abundance; but as these
sciences scarcely existed until the present century, and are but
feebly prosecuted among us at the present time, the workmen have been
unequal to the work. Moreover, while fossil remains buried in the earth
will keep for the future student, the remains of Indian arts, languages
and institutions will not. They are perishing daily, and have been
perishing for upwards of three centuries. The ethnic life of the Indian
tribes is declining under the influence of American civilization,
their arts and languages are disappearing, and their institutions are
dissolving. After a few more years, facts that may now be gathered with
ease will become impossible of discovery. These circumstances appeal
strongly to Americans to enter this great field and gather its abundant
harvest.

ROCHESTER, NEW YORK, March, 1877.

TABLE OF CONTENTS.


    PART I.

    GROWTH OF INTELLIGENCE THROUGH INVENTIONS AND
    DISCOVERIES.


    CHAPTER I.

    ETHNICAL PERIODS.

    Progress of Mankind from the Bottom of the Scale.—Illustrated
    by Inventions, Discoveries and Institutions.—Two Plans
    of Government—one Gentile and Social, giving a Society
    (_Societas_); the other Political, giving a State
    (_Civitas_).—The former founded upon Persons and Gentilism;
    the Latter upon Territory and Property.—The First, the Plan of
    Government of Ancient Society.—The Second, that of Modern or
    Civilized Society.—Uniformity of Human Experience.—Proposed
    Ethnical Periods—I. Lower Status of Savagery; II. Middle
    Status of Savagery; III. Upper Status of Savagery; IV. Lower
    Status of Barbarism; V. Middle Status of Barbarism; VI. Upper
    Status of Barbarism; VII. Status of Civilization.                   3


    CHAPTER II.

    ARTS OF SUBSISTENCE.

    Supremacy of Mankind over the Earth.—Control over Subsistence
    the Condition.—Mankind alone gained that Control.—Successive
    Arts of Subsistence—I. Natural Subsistence; II. Fish
    Subsistence; III. Farinaceous Subsistence; IV. Meat and
    Milk Subsistence; V. Unlimited Subsistence through Field
    Agriculture.—Long Intervals of Time between them.                  19


    CHAPTER III.

    RATIO OF HUMAN PROGRESS.

    Retrospect on the Lines of Human Progress.—Principal
    Contributions of Modern Civilization.—Of Ancient
    Civilization.—Of Later Period of Barbarism.—Of Middle
    Period.—Of Older Period.—Of Period of Savagery.—Humble
    Condition of Primitive Man.—Human Progress in a Geometrical
    Ratio.—Relative Length of Ethnical Periods.—Appearance of
    Semitic and Aryan Families.                                        29


    PART II.

    GROWTH OF THE IDEA OF GOVERNMENT.


    CHAPTER I.

    ORGANIZATION OF SOCIETY UPON THE BASIS OF SEX.

    Australian Classes.—Organized upon Sex.—Archaic Character of
    the Organization.—Australian Gentes.—The Eight Classes.—Rule
    of Marriage.—Descent in the Female Line.—Stupendous
    Conjugal System.—Two Male and Two Female Classes in each
    Gens.—Innovations upon the Classes.—Gens still Rudimentary.        49


    CHAPTER II.

    THE IROQUOIS GENS.

    The Gentile Organization.—Its Wide Prevalence.—Definition of
    a Gens.—Descent in the Female Line the Archaic Rule.—Rights,
    Privileges and Obligations of Members of a Gens.—Right of
    Electing and Deposing its Sachem and Chiefs.—Obligation not
    to marry in the Gens.—Mutual Rights of Inheritance of the
    Property of deceased Members.—Reciprocal Obligations of
    Help, Defense and Redress of Injuries.—Right of Naming its
    Members.—Right of Adopting Strangers into the Gens.—Common
    Religious Rites, Query.—A Common Burial Place.—Council of the
    Gens.—Gentes named after Animals.—Number of Persons in a Gens.     62


    CHAPTER III.

    THE IROQUOIS PHRATRY.

    Definition of a Phratry.—Kindred Gentes Reunited in a
    Higher Organization.—Phratry of the Iroquois Tribes.—Its
    Composition.—Its Uses and Functions.—Social and
    Religious.—Illustrations.—The Analogue of the Grecian Phratry;
    but in its Archaic Form.—Phratries of the Choctas.—Of the
    Chickasas.—Of the Mohegans.—Of the Thlinkeets.—Their Probable
    Universality in the Tribes of the American Aborigines.             88


    CHAPTER IV.

    THE IROQUOIS TRIBE.

    The Tribe as an Organization.—Composed of Gentes Speaking
    the same Dialect.—Separation in Area led to Divergence
    of Speech, and Segmentation.—The Tribe a Natural
    Growth.—Illustrations.—Attributes of a Tribe.—A Territory and
    Name.—An Exclusive Dialect.—The Right to Invest and Depose its
    Sachems and Chiefs.—A Religious Faith and Worship.—A Council
    of Chiefs.—A Head-Chief of Tribe in some Instances.—Three
    successive Forms of Gentile Government: First, a Government of
    One Power; Second, of Two Powers; Third, of Three Powers.         102


    CHAPTER V.

    THE IROQUOIS CONFEDERACY.

    Confederacies Natural Growths.—Founded upon Common Gentes,
    and a Common Language.—The Iroquois Tribes.—Their Settlement
    in New York.—Formation of the Confederacy.—Its Structure
    and Principles.—Fifty Sachemships Created.—Made Hereditary
    in certain Gentes.—Number assigned to each Tribe.—These
    Sachems formed the Council of the Confederacy.—The Civil
    Council.—Its Mode of Transacting Business.—Unanimity Necessary
    to its Action.—The Mourning Council.—Mode of Raising up
    Sachems.—General Military Commanders.—This Office the Germ of
    that of a Chief Executive Magistrate.—Intellectual Capacity of
    the Iroquois.                                                     122


    CHAPTER VI.

    GENTES IN OTHER TRIBES OF THE GANOWÁNIAN FAMILY.

    Divisions of American Aborigines.—Gentes in Indian Tribes;
    with their Rules of Descent and Inheritance.—I. Hodenosaunian
    Tribes.—II. Dakotian.—III. Gulf.—IV. Pawnee.—V. Algonkin.—VI.
    Athapasco-Apache.—VII. Tribes of North-west Coast.—Eskimos,
    a Distinct Family.—VIII. Salish, Sahaptin, and Kootenay
    Tribes.—IX. Shoshonee.—X. Village Indians of New Mexico,
    Mexico and Central America.—XI. South American Indian
    Tribes.—Probable Universality of the Organization in Gentes in
    the Ganowánian Family.                                            151


    CHAPTER VII.

    THE AZTEC CONFEDERACY.

    Misconception of Aztec Society.—Condition of
    Advancement.—Nahuatlac Tribes.—Their Settlement in
    Mexico.—Pueblo of Mexico founded, A. D. 1325.—Aztec
    Confederacy established, A. D. 1426.—Extent of Territorial
    Domination.—Probable Number of the People.—Whether or not
    the Aztecs were organized in Gentes and Phratries.—The
    Council of Chiefs.—Its probable Functions.—Office
    held by Montezuma.—Elective in Tenure.—Deposition of
    Montezuma.—Probable Functions of the Office.—Aztec
    Institutions essentially Democratical.—The Government a
    Military Democracy.                                               186


    CHAPTER VIII.

    THE GRECIAN GENS.

    Early Condition of Grecian Tribes.—Organized into
    Gentes.—Changes in the Character of the Gens.—Necessity for
    a Political System.—Problem to be Solved.—The Formation of a
    State.—Grote’s Description of the Grecian Gentes.—Of their
    Phratries and Tribes.—Rights, Privileges and Obligations of
    the Members of the Gens.—Similar to those of the Iroquois
    Gens.—The Office of Chief of the Gens.—Whether Elective or
    Hereditary.—The Gens the Basis of the Social System.—Antiquity
    of the Gentile Lineage.—Inheritance of Property.—Archaic and
    Final Rule.—Relationships between the Members of a Gens.—The
    Gens the Center of Social and Religious Influence.                215


    CHAPTER IX.

    THE GRECIAN PHRATRY, TRIBE AND NATION.

    The Athenian Phratry.—How Formed.—Definition of
    Dikæarchus.—Objects chiefly Religious.—The Phratriarch.—The
    Tribe.—Composed of Three Phratries.—The Phylo Basileus.—The
    Nation.—Composed of Four Tribes.—Boulê, or Council of
    Chiefs.—Agora, or Assembly of the People.—The Basileus.—Tenure
    of the Office.—Military and Priestly Functions.—Civil
    Functions not shown.—Governments of the Heroic Age, Military
    Democracies.—Aristotle’s Definition of a Basileus.—Later
    Athenian Democracy.—Inherited from the Gentes.—Its Powerful
    Influence upon Athenian Development.                              235


    CHAPTER X.

    THE INSTITUTION OF GRECIAN POLITICAL SOCIETY.

    Failure of the Gentes as a Basis of Government.—Legislation
    of Theseus.—Attempted Substitution of Classes.—Its
    Failure.—Abolition of the Office of Basileus.—The
    Archonship.—Naucraries and Trittyes.—Legislation of Solon.—The
    Property Classes.—Partial Transfer of Civil Power from the
    Gentes to the Classes.—Persons unattached to any Gens.—Made
    Citizens.—The Senate.—The Ecclesia.—Political Society
    partially attained.—Legislation of Cleisthenes.—Institution
    of Political Society.—The Attic Deme or Township.—Its
    Organization and Powers.—Its Local Self-government.—The Local
    Tribe or District.—The Attic Commonwealth.—Athenian Democracy.    256


    CHAPTER XI.

    THE ROMAN GENS.

    Italian Tribes Organized in Gentes.—Founding of
    Rome.—Tribes Organized into a Military Democracy.—The
    Roman Gens.—Definition of a Gentilis by Cicero.—By
    Festus.—By Varro.—Descent in Male Line.—Marrying out of the
    Gens.—Rights, Privileges and Obligations of the Members of a
    Gens.—Democratic Constitution of Ancient Latin Society.—Number
    of Persons in a Gens.                                             277


    CHAPTER XII.

    THE ROMAN CURIA, TRIBE AND POPULUS.

    Roman Gentile Society.—Four Stages of Organization.—1.
    The Gens; 2. The Curia, consisting of Ten Gentes; 3. The
    Tribe, composed of Ten Curiæ; 4. The Populus Romanus,
    composed of Three Tribes.—Numerical Proportions.—How
    Produced.—Concentration of Gentes at Rome.—The Roman
    Senate.—Its Functions.—The Assembly of the People.—Its
    Powers.—The People Sovereign.—Office of Military Commander
    (Rex).—Its Powers and Functions.—Roman Gentile Institutions
    essentially Democratical.                                         300


    CHAPTER XIII.

    THE INSTITUTION OF ROMAN POLITICAL SOCIETY.

    The Populus.—The Plebeians.—The Clients.—The
    Patricians.—Limits of the Order.—Legislation of Servius
    Tullius.—Institution of Property Classes.—Of the
    Centuries.—Unequal Suffrage.—Comitia Centuriata. —Supersedes
    Comitia Curiata.—Classes supersede the Gentes.—The
    Census.—Plebeians made Citizens.—Institution of City
    Wards.—Of Country Townships.—Tribes increased to Four.—Made
    Local instead of Consanguine.—Character of New Political
    System.—Decline and Disappearance of Gentile Organization.—The
    Work it Accomplished.                                             323


    CHAPTER XIV.

    CHANGE OF DESCENT FROM THE FEMALE TO THE MALE LINE.

    How the Change might have been made.—Inheritance of
    Property the Motive.—Descent in the Female Line among the
    Lycians.—The Cretans.—The Etruscans.—Probably among the
    Athenians in the time of Cecrops.—The Hundred Families of
    the Locrians.—Evidence from Marriages.—Turanian System of
    Consanguinity among Grecian Tribes.—Legend of the Danaidæ.        343


    CHAPTER XV.

    GENTES IN OTHER TRIBES OF THE HUMAN FAMILY.

    The Scottish Clan.—The Irish Sept.—Germanic Tribes.—Traces
    of a prior Gentile System.—Gentes in Southern Asiatic
    Tribes.—In Northern.—In Uralian Tribes.—Hundred Families of
    Chinese.—Hebrew Tribes.—Composed of Gentes and Phratries
    Apparently.—Gentes in African Tribes.—In Australian
    Tribes.—Subdivisions of Fejees and Rewas.—Wide Distribution of
    Gentile Organization.                                             357


    PART III.

    GROWTH OF THE IDEA OF THE FAMILY.


    CHAPTER I.

    THE ANCIENT FAMILY.

    Five successive Forms of the Family.—First, the Consanguine
    Family.—It created the Malayan System of Consanguinity and
    Affinity.—Second, the Punaluan.—It created the Turanian
    and Ganowánian System.—Third, the Monogamian.—It created
    the Aryan, Semitic, and Uralian System.—The Syndyasmian
    and Patriarchal Families Intermediate.— Both failed to
    create a System of Consanguinity.—These Systems Natural
    Growths.—Two Ultimate Forms.—One Classificatory, the other
    Descriptive.—General Principles of these Systems.—Their
    Persistent Maintenance.                                           383


    CHAPTER II.

    THE CONSANGUINE FAMILY.

    Former Existence of this Family.—Proved by Malayan System of
    Consanguinity.—Hawaiian System used as Typical.—Five Grades of
    Relations.—Details of System.—Explained in its origin by the
    Intermarriage of Brothers and Sisters in a Group.—Early State
    of Society in the Sandwich Islands.—Nine Grades of Relations
    of the Chinese.—Identical in Principle with the Hawaiian.—Five
    Grades of Relations in Ideal Republic of Plato.—Table of
    Malayan System of Consanguinity and Affinity.                     401


    CHAPTER III.

    THE PUNALUAN FAMILY.

    The Punaluan Family supervened upon the
    Consanguine.—Transition, how Produced.—Hawaiian Custom of
    Punalua.—Its probable ancient Prevalence over wide Areas.—The
    Gentes originated probably in Punaluan Groups.—The Turanian
    System of Consanguinity.—Created by the Punaluan Family.—It
    proves the Existence of this Family when the System was
    formed.—Details of System.—Explanation of its Relationships
    in their Origin.—Table of Turanian and Ganowánian Systems of
    Consanguinity and Affinity.                                       424


    CHAPTER IV.

    THE SYNDYASMIAN AND THE PATRIARCHAL FAMILIES.

    The Syndyasmian Family.—How Constituted.—Its
    Characteristics.—Influence upon it of the Gentile
    Organization.—Propensity to Pair a late Development.—Ancient
    Society should be Studied where the highest Exemplifications
    are found.—The Patriarchal Family.—Paternal Power its
    Essential Characteristic.—Polygamy subordinate.—The Roman
    Family similar.—Paternal Power unknown in previous Families.      453


    CHAPTER V.

    THE MONOGAMIAN FAMILY.

    This Family comparatively Modern.—The Term Familia.—Family
    of Ancient Germans.—Of Homeric Greeks.—Of Civilized
    Greeks.—Seclusion of Wives.—Obligations of Monogamy not
    respected by the Males.—The Roman Family.—Wives under
    Power.—Aryan System of Consanguinity.—It came in under
    Monogamy.—Previous System probably Turanian.—Transition
    from Turanian into Aryan.—Roman and Arabic Systems of
    Consanguinity.—Details of the Former.—Present Monogamian
    Family.—Table of Roman and Arabic Systems.                        468


    CHAPTER VI.

    SEQUENCE OF INSTITUTIONS CONNECTED WITH THE FAMILY.

    Sequence in part Hypothetical.—Relation of these Institutions
    in the Order of their Origination.—Evidence of their
    Origination in the Order named.—Hypothesis of Degradation
    Considered.—The Antiquity of Mankind.                             498


    PART IV.

    GROWTH OF THE IDEA OF PROPERTY.


    CHAPTER I.

    THE THREE RULES OF INHERITANCE.

    Property in the Status of Savagery.—Slow Rate of
    Progress.—First Rule of Inheritance.—Property Distributed
    among the Gentiles.—Property in the Lower Status of
    Barbarism.—Germ of Second Rule of Inheritance.—Distributed
    among Agnatic Kindred.—Improved Character of Man.—Property in
    Middle Status.—Rule of Inheritance imperfectly Known.—Agnatic
    Inheritance Probable.                                             523


    CHAPTER II.

    THE THREE RULES OF INHERITANCE—CONTINUED.

    Property in the Upper Status of Barbarism.—Slavery.—Tenure
    of Lands in Grecian Tribes.—Culture of the Period.—Its
    Brilliancy.—Third Rule of Inheritance.—Exclusively in
    Children.—Hebrew Tribes.—Rule of Inheritance.—Daughters of
    Zelophehad.—Property remained in the Phratry, and probably in
    the Gens.—The Reversion.—Athenian Inheritance.—Exclusively
    in Children.—The Reversion.—Inheritance remained in
    the Gens.—Heiresses.—Wills.—Roman Inheritance.—The
    Reversion.—Property remained in the Gens.—Appearance of
    Aristocracy.—Property Career of the Human Race.—Unity of
    Origin of Mankind.                                                537



PART I.

GROWTH OF INTELLIGENCE THROUGH INVENTIONS AND DISCOVERIES.



ANCIENT SOCIETY



CHAPTER I.

ETHNICAL PERIODS.

    PROGRESS OF MANKIND FROM THE BOTTOM OF THE SCALE.—ILLUSTRATED
    BY INVENTIONS DISCOVERIES AND INSTITUTIONS.—TWO PLANS
    OF GOVERNMENT—ONE GENTILE AND SOCIAL, GIVING A SOCIETY,
    (_Societas_); THE OTHER POLITICAL, GIVING A STATE,
    (_Civitas_).—THE FORMER FOUNDED UPON PERSONS AND GENTILISM;
    THE LATTER UPON TERRITORY AND PROPERTY.—THE FIRST, THE PLAN OF
    GOVERNMENT OF ANCIENT SOCIETY.—THE SECOND, THAT OF MODERN OR
    CIVILIZED SOCIETY.—UNIFORMITY OF HUMAN EXPERIENCE.—PROPOSED
    ETHNICAL PERIODS—I. LOWER STATUS OF SAVAGERY; II. MIDDLE
    STATUS OF SAVAGERY; III. UPPER STATUS OF SAVAGERY; IV. LOWER
    STATUS OF BARBARISM; V. MIDDLE STATUS OF BARBARISM; VI. UPPER
    STATUS OF BARBARISM; VII. STATUS OF CIVILIZATION.


The latest investigations respecting the early condition of the human
race, are tending to the conclusion that mankind commenced their career
at the bottom of the scale and worked their way up from savagery to
civilization through the slow accumulations of experimental knowledge.

As it is undeniable that portions of the human family have existed in
a state of savagery, other portions in a state of barbarism, and still
other portions in a state of civilization, it seems equally so that
these three distinct conditions are connected with each other in a
natural as well as necessary sequence of progress. Moreover, that this
sequence has been historically true of the entire human family, up to
the status attained by each branch respectively, is rendered probable
by the conditions under which all progress occurs, and by the known
advancement of several branches of the family through two or more of
these conditions.

An attempt will be made in the following pages to bring forward
additional evidence of the rudeness of the early condition of mankind,
of the gradual evolution of their mental and moral powers through
experience, and of their protracted struggle with opposing obstacles
while winning their way to civilization. It will be drawn, in part,
from the great sequence of inventions and discoveries which stretches
along the entire pathway of human progress; but chiefly from domestic
institutions, which express the growth of certain ideas and passions.

As we re-ascend along the several lines of progress toward the
primitive ages of mankind, and eliminate one after the other, in the
order in which they appeared, inventions and discoveries on the one
hand, and institutions on the other, we are enabled to perceive that
the former stand to each other in progressive, and the latter in
unfolding relations. While the former class have had a connection,
more or less direct, the latter have been developed from a few primary
germs of thought. Modern institutions plant their roots in the period
of barbarism, into which their germs were transmitted from the previous
period of savagery. They have had a lineal descent through the ages,
with the streams of the blood, as well as a logical development.

Two independent lines of investigation thus invite our attention. The
one leads through inventions and discoveries, and the other through
primary institutions. With the knowledge gained therefrom, we may hope
to indicate the principal stages of human development. The proofs
to be adduced will be drawn chiefly from domestic institutions; the
references to achievements more strictly intellectual being general as
well as subordinate.

The facts indicate the gradual formation and subsequent development of
certain ideas, passions, and aspirations. Those which hold the most
prominent positions may be generalized as growths of the particular
ideas with which they severally stand connected. Apart from inventions
and discoveries they are the following:

      I. _Subsistence_,
     II. _Government_,
    III. _Language_,
     IV. _The Family_,
      V. _Religion_,
     VI. _House Life and Architecture_,
    VII. _Property_.

_First._ Subsistence has been increased and perfected by a series of
successive arts, introduced at long intervals of time, and connected
more or less directly with inventions and discoveries.

_Second._ The germ of government must be sought in the organization
into gentes in the Status of savagery; and followed down, through the
advancing forms of this institution, to the establishment of political
society.

_Third._ Human speech seems to have been developed from the rudest and
simplest forms of expression. Gesture or sign language, as intimated
by Lucretius,[1] must have preceded articulate language, as thought
preceded speech. The monosyllabical preceded the syllabical, as the
latter did that of concrete words. Human intelligence, unconscious of
design, evolved articulate language by utilizing the vocal sounds.
This great subject, a department of knowledge by itself, does not fall
within the scope of the present investigation.

_Fourth._ With respect to the family, the stages of its growth are
embodied in systems of consanguinity and affinity, and in usages
relating to marriage, by means of which, collectively, the family can
be definitely traced through several successive forms.

_Fifth._ The growth of religious ideas is environed with such intrinsic
difficulties that it may never receive a perfectly satisfactory
exposition. Religion deals so largely with the imaginative and
emotional nature, and consequently with such uncertain elements of
knowledge, that all primitive religions are grotesque and to some
extent unintelligible. This subject also falls without the plan of this
work excepting as it may prompt incidental suggestions.

_Sixth._ House architecture, which connects itself with the form of
the family and the plan of domestic life, affords a tolerably complete
illustration of progress from savagery to civilization. Its growth can
be traced from the hut of the savage, through the communal houses of
the barbarians, to the house of the single family of civilized nations,
with all the successive links by which one extreme is connected with
the other. This subject will be noticed incidentally.

_Lastly._ The idea of property was slowly formed in the human mind,
remaining nascent and feeble through immense periods of time. Springing
into life in savagery, it required all the experience of this period
and of the subsequent period of barbarism to develop the germ, and
to prepare the human brain for the acceptance of its controlling
influence. Its dominance as a passion over all other passions marks
the commencement of civilization. It not only led mankind to overcome
the obstacles which delayed civilization, but to establish political
society on the basis of territory and of property. A critical knowledge
of the evolution of the idea of property would embody, in some
respects, the most remarkable portion of the mental history of mankind.

It will be my object to present some evidence of human progress along
these several lines, and through successive ethnical periods, as it is
revealed by inventions and discoveries, and by the growth of the ideas
of government, of the family, and of property.

It may be here premised that all forms of government are reducible
to two general plans, using the word plan in its scientific sense.
In their bases the two are fundamentally distinct. The first, in the
order of time, is founded upon persons, and upon relations purely
personal, and may be distinguished as a society (_societas_). The gens
is the unit of this organization; giving as the successive stages
of integration, in the archaic period, the gens, the phratry, the
tribe and the confederacy of tribes, which constituted a people or
nation (_populus_). At a later period a coalescence of tribes in the
same area into a nation took the place of a confederacy of tribes
occupying independent areas. Such, through prolonged ages, after the
gens appeared, was the substantially universal organization of ancient
society; and it remained among the Greeks and Romans after civilization
supervened. The second is founded upon territory and upon property,
and may be distinguished as a state (_civitas_). The township or ward,
circumscribed by metes and bounds, with the property it contains, is
the basis or unit of the latter, and political society is the result.
Political society is organized upon territorial areas, and deals with
property as well as with persons through territorial relations. The
successive stages of integration are the township or ward, which is the
unit of organization; the county or province, which is an aggregation
of townships or wards; and the national domain or territory, which is
an aggregation of counties or provinces; the people of each of which
are organized into a body politic. It taxed the Greeks and Romans to
the extent of their capacities, after they had gained civilization, to
invent the deme or township and the city ward; and thus inaugurate the
second great plan of government, which remains among civilized nations
to the present hour. In ancient society this territorial plan was
unknown. When it came in it fixed the boundary line between ancient and
modern society, as the distinction will be recognized in these pages.

It may be further observed that the domestic institutions of the
barbarous, and even of the savage ancestors of mankind, are still
exemplified in portions of the human family with such completeness
that, with the exception of the strictly primitive period, the several
stages of this progress are tolerably well preserved. They are seen in
the organization of society upon the basis of sex, then upon the basis
of kin, and finally upon the basis of territory; through the successive
forms of marriage and of the family, with the systems of consanguinity
thereby created; through house life and architecture; and through
progress in usages with respect to the ownership and inheritance of
property.

The theory of human degradation to explain the existence of savages
and of barbarians is no longer tenable. It came in as a corollary from
the Mosaic cosmogony, and was acquiesced in from a supposed necessity
which no longer exists. As a theory, it is not only incapable of
explaining the existence of savages, but it is without support in the
facts of human experience.

The remote ancestors of the Aryan nations presumptively passed through
an experience similar to that of existing barbarous and savage tribes.
Though the experience of these nations embodies all the information
necessary to illustrate the periods of civilization, both ancient
and modern, together with a part of that in the Later period of
barbarism, their anterior experience must be deduced, in the main,
from the traceable connection between the elements of their existing
institutions and inventions, and similar elements still preserved in
those of savage and barbarous tribes.

It may be remarked finally that the experience of mankind has run in
nearly uniform channels; that human necessities in similar conditions
have been substantially the same; and that the operations of the mental
principle have been uniform in virtue of the specific identity of the
brain of all the races of mankind. This, however, is but a part of
the explanation of uniformity in results. The germs of the principal
institutions and arts of life were developed while man was still a
savage. To a very great extent the experience of the subsequent periods
of barbarism and of civilization have been expended in the further
development of these original conceptions. Wherever a connection can
be traced on different continents between a present institution and
a common germ, the derivation of the people themselves from a common
original stock is implied.

The discussion of these several classes of facts will be facilitated
by the establishment of a certain number of Ethnical Periods; each
representing a distinct condition of society, and distinguishable by
a mode of life peculiar to itself. The terms “Age of _Stone_,” “of
_Bronze_,” and “of _Iron_” introduced by Danish archæologists, have
been extremely useful for certain purposes, and will remain so for
the classification of objects of ancient art; but the progress of
knowledge has rendered other and different subdivisions necessary.
Stone implements were not entirely laid aside with the introduction of
tools of iron, nor of those of bronze. The invention of the process
of smelting iron ore created an ethnical epoch, yet we could scarcely
date another from the production of bronze. Moreover, since the period
of stone implements overlaps those of bronze and of iron, and since
that of bronze also overlaps that of iron, they are not capable of a
circumscription that would leave each independent and distinct.

It is probable that the successive arts of subsistence which arose at
long intervals will ultimately, from the great influence they must have
exercised upon the condition of mankind, afford the most satisfactory
bases for these divisions. But investigation has not been carried far
enough in this direction to yield the necessary information. With
our present knowledge the main result can be attained by selecting
such other inventions or discoveries as will afford sufficient tests
of progress to characterize the commencement of successive ethnical
periods. Even though accepted as provisional, these periods will be
found convenient and useful. Each of those about to be proposed will be
found to cover a distinct culture, and to represent a particular mode
of life.

The period of savagery, of the early part of which very little is
known, may be divided, provisionally, into three sub-periods. These may
be named respectively the _Older_, the _Middle_, and the _Later_ period
of savagery; and the condition of society in each, respectively, may be
distinguished as the _Lower_, the _Middle_, and the _Upper Status_ of
savagery.

In like manner, the period of barbarism divides naturally into three
sub-periods, which will be called, respectively, the _Older_, the
_Middle_, and the _Later_ period of barbarism; and the condition of
society in each, respectively, will be distinguished as the _Lower_,
the _Middle_, and the _Upper Status_ of barbarism.

It is difficult, if not impossible, to find such tests of progress
to mark the commencement of these several periods as will be found
absolute in their application, and without exceptions upon all the
continents. Neither is it necessary, for the purpose in hand, that
exceptions should not exist. It will be sufficient if the principal
tribes of mankind can be classified, according to the degree of their
relative progress, into conditions which can be recognized as distinct.

I. _Lower Status of Savagery._

This period commenced with the infancy of the human race, and may be
said to have ended with the acquisition of a fish subsistence and of
a knowledge of the use of fire. Mankind were then living in their
original restricted habitat, and subsisting upon fruits and nuts.
The commencement of articulate speech belongs to this period. No
exemplification of tribes of mankind in this condition remained to the
historical period.

II. _Middle Status of Savagery._

It commenced with the acquisition of a fish subsistence and a knowledge
of the use of fire, and ended with the invention of the bow and
arrow. Mankind, while in this condition, spread from their original
habitat over the greater portion of the earth’s surface. Among tribes
still existing it will leave in the Middle Status of savagery, for
example, the Australians and the greater part of the Polynesians when
discovered. It will be sufficient to give one or more exemplifications
of each status.

III. _Upper Status of Savagery._

It commenced with the invention of the bow and arrow, and ended with
the invention of the art of pottery. It leaves in the Upper Status
of Savagery the Athapascan tribes of the Hudson’s Bay Territory, the
tribes of the valley of the Columbia, and certain coast tribes of North
and South America; but with relation to the time of their discovery.
This closes the period of Savagery.

IV. _Lower Status of Barbarism._

The invention or practice of the art of pottery, all things considered,
is probably the most effective and conclusive test that can be selected
to fix a boundary line, necessarily arbitrary, between savagery and
barbarism. The distinctness of the two conditions has long been
recognized, but no criterion of progress out of the former into the
latter has hitherto been brought forward. All such tribes, then, as
never attained to the art of pottery will be classed as savages, and
those possessing this art but who never attained a phonetic alphabet
and the use of writing will be classed as barbarians.

The first sub-period of barbarism commenced with the manufacture of
pottery, whether by original invention or adoption. In finding its
termination, and the commencement of the Middle Status, a difficulty
is encountered in the unequal endowments of the two hemispheres, which
began to be influential upon human affairs after the period of savagery
had passed. It may be met, however, by the adoption of equivalents.
In the Eastern hemisphere, the domestication of animals, and in the
Western, the cultivation of maize and plants by irrigation, together
with the use of adobe-brick and stone in house building have been
selected as sufficient evidence of progress to work a transition out
of the Lower and into the Middle Status of barbarism. It leaves, for
example, in the Lower Status, the Indian tribes of the United States
east of the Missouri River, and such tribes of Europe and Asia as
practiced the art of pottery, but were without domestic animals.

V. _Middle Status of Barbarism._

It commenced with the domestication of animals in the Eastern
hemisphere, and in the Western with cultivation by irrigation and
with the use of adobe-brick and stone in architecture, as shown.
Its termination may be fixed with the invention of the process of
smelting iron ore. This places in the Middle Status, for example, the
Village Indians of New Mexico, Mexico, Central America and Peru, and
such tribes in the Eastern hemisphere as possessed domestic animals,
but were without a knowledge of iron. The ancient Britons, although
familiar with the use of iron, fairly belong in this connection. The
vicinity of more advanced continental tribes had advanced the arts of
life among them far beyond the state of development of their domestic
institutions.

VI. _Upper Status of Barbarism._

It commenced with the manufacture of iron, and ended with the invention
of a phonetic alphabet, and the use of writing in literary composition.
Here civilization begins. This leaves in the Upper Status, for example,
the Grecian tribes of the Homeric age, the Italian tribes shortly
before the founding of Rome, and the Germanic tribes of the time of
Cæsar.

VII. _Status of Civilization._

It commenced, as stated, with the use of a phonetic alphabet and
the production of literary records, and divides into _Ancient_ and
_Modern_. As an equivalent, hieroglyphical writing upon stone may be
admitted.


  RECAPITULATION.

    _Periods._                             _Conditions._

    I. _Older Period of Savagery_,      I. _Lower Status of Savagery_,

   II. _Middle Period of Savagery_,    II. _Middle Status of Savagery_,

  III. _Later Period of Savagery_,    III. _Upper Status of Savagery_,

   IV. _Older Period of Barbarism_,    IV. _Lower Status of Barbarism_,

    V. _Middle Period of Barbarism_,    V. _Middle Status of Barbarism_,

   VI. _Later Period of Barbarism_,    VI. _Upper Status of Barbarism_,

  VII. STATUS OF CIVILIZATION.

    I. _Lower Status of Savagery,    From the Infancy of the Human
                                     Race to the commencement
                                     of the next Period._

   II. _Middle Status of Savagery,   From the acquisition of a fish
                                     subsistence and a knowledge
                                     of the use of fire, to etc._

  III. _Upper Status of Savagery,    From the Invention of the
                                     Bow and Arrow, to etc._

   IV. _Lower Status of Barbarism,   From the Invention of the
                                     Art of Pottery, to etc._

    V. _Middle Status of Barbarism,  From the Domestication of
                                     animals on the Eastern hemisphere,
                                     and in the Western
                                     from the cultivation of maize
                                     and plants by Irrigation, with
                                     the use of adobe-brick and
                                     stone, to etc._

   VI. _Upper Status of Barbarism,   From the Invention of the
                                     process of Smelting Iron Ore,
                                     with the use of iron tools, to
                                     etc._

  VII. _Status of Civilization,      From the Invention of a Phonetic
                                     Alphabet, with the use of
                                     writing, to the present time._

Each of these periods has a distinct culture and exhibits a mode of
life more or less special and peculiar to itself. This specialization
of ethnical periods renders it possible to treat a particular society
according to its condition of relative advancement, and to make it a
subject of independent study and discussion. It does not affect the
main result that different tribes and nations on the same continent,
and even of the same linguistic family, are in different conditions at
the same time, since for our purpose the _condition_ of each is the
material fact, the _time_ being immaterial.

Since the use of pottery is less significant than that of domestic
animals, of iron, or of a phonetic alphabet, employed to mark the
commencement of subsequent ethnical periods, the reasons for its
adoption should be stated. The manufacture of pottery presupposes
village life, and considerable progress in the simple arts.[2] Flint
and stone implements are older than pottery, remains of the former
having been found in ancient repositories in numerous instances
unaccompanied by the latter. A succession of inventions of greater
need and adapted to a lower condition must have occurred before the
want of pottery would be felt. The commencement of village life, with
some degree of control over subsistence, wooden vessels and utensils,
finger weaving with filaments of bark, basket making, and the bow and
arrow make their appearance before the art of pottery. The Village
Indians who were in the Middle Status of barbarism, such as the
Zuñians, the Aztecs and the Cholulans, manufactured pottery in large
quantities and in many forms of considerable excellence; the partially
Village Indians of the United States, who were in the Lower Status
of barbarism, such as the Iroquois, the Choctas and the Cherokees,
made it in smaller quantities and in a limited number of forms; but
the Non-horticultural Indians, who were in the Status of savagery,
such as the Athapascans, the tribes of California and of the valley of
the Columbia, were ignorant of its use.[3] In Lubbock’s _Pre-Historic
Times_, in Tylor’s _Early History of Mankind_, and in Peschel’s _Races
of Man_, the particulars respecting this art, and the extent of its
distribution, have been collected with remarkable breadth of research.
It was unknown in Polynesia (with the exception of the Islands of the
Tongans and Fijians), in Australia, in California, and in the Hudson’s
Bay Territory. Mr. Tylor remarks that “the art of weaving was unknown
in most of the Islands away from Asia,” and that “in most of the South
Sea Islands there was no knowledge of pottery.”[4] The Rev. Lorimer
Fison, an English missionary residing in Australia, informed the author
in answer to inquiries, that “the Australians had no woven fabrics,
no pottery, and were ignorant of the bow and arrow.” This last fact
was also true in general of the Polynesians. The introduction of the
ceramic art produced a new epoch in human progress in the direction of
an improved living and increased domestic conveniences. While flint
and stone implements—which came in earlier and required long periods
of time to develop all their uses—gave the canoe, wooden vessels and
utensils, and ultimately timber and plank in house architecture,[5]
pottery gave a durable vessel for boiling food, which before that had
been rudely accomplished in baskets coated with clay, and in ground
cavities lined with skin, the boiling being effected with heated
stones.[6]

Whether the pottery of the aborigines was hardened by fire or cured by
the simple process of drying, has been made a question. Prof. E. T.
Cox, of Indianapolis, has shown by comparing the analyses of ancient
pottery and hydraulic cements, “that so far as chemical constituents
are concerned it (the pottery) agrees very well with the composition of
hydraulic stones.” He remarks further, that “all the pottery belonging
to the mound-builders’ age, which I have seen, is composed of alluvial
clay and sand, or a mixture of the former with pulverized fresh-water
shells. A paste made of such a mixture possesses in a high degree the
properties of hydraulic Puzzuolani and Portland cement, so that vessels
formed of it hardened without being burned, as is customary with
modern pottery. The fragments of shells served the purpose of gravel
or fragments of stone as at present used in connection with hydraulic
lime for the manufacture of artificial stone.”[7] The composition of
Indian pottery in analogy with that of hydraulic cement suggests the
difficulties in the way of inventing the art, and tends also to explain
the lateness of its introduction in the course of human experience.
Notwithstanding the ingenious suggestion of Prof. Cox, it is probable
that pottery was hardened by artificial heat. In some cases the fact
is directly attested. Thus Adair, speaking of the Gulf Tribes, remarks
that “they make earthern pots of very different sizes, so as to contain
from two to ten gallons, large pitchers to carry water, bowls, dishes,
platters, basins, and a prodigious number of other vessels of such
antiquated forms as would be tedious to describe, and impossible to
name. Their method of glazing them is, they place them over a large
fire of smoky pitch-pine, which makes them smooth, black and firm.”[8]

Another advantage of fixing definite ethnical periods is the direction
of special investigation to those tribes and nations which afford the
best exemplification of each status, with the view of making each both
standard and illustrative. Some tribes and families have been left
in geographical isolation to work out the problems of progress by
original mental effort; and have, consequently, retained their arts
and institutions pure and homogeneous; while those of other tribes
and nations have been adulterated through external influence. Thus,
while Africa was and is an ethnical chaos of savagery and barbarism,
Australia and Polynesia were in savagery, pure and simple, with the
arts and institutions belonging to that condition. In like manner, the
Indian family of America, unlike any other existing family, exemplified
the condition of mankind in three successive ethnical periods. In the
undisturbed possession of a great continent, of common descent, and
with homogeneous institutions, they illustrated, when discovered, each
of these conditions, and especially those of the Lower and of the
Middle Status of barbarism, more elaborately and completely than any
other portion of mankind. The far northern Indians and some of the
coast tribes of North and South America were in the Upper Status of
savagery; the partially Village Indians east of the Mississippi were
in the Lower Status of barbarism, and the Village Indians of North
and South America were in the Middle Status. Such an opportunity to
recover full and minute information of the course of human experience
and progress in developing their arts and institutions through these
successive conditions has not been offered within the historical
period. It must be added that it has been indifferently improved. Our
greatest deficiencies relate to the last period named.

Differences in the culture of the same period in the Eastern and
Western hemispheres undoubtedly existed in consequence of the unequal
endowments of the continents; but the condition of society in the
corresponding status must have been, in the main, substantially similar.

The ancestors of the Grecian, Roman and German tribes passed through
the stages we have indicated, in the midst of the last of which the
light of history fell upon them. Their differentiation from the
undistinguishable mass of barbarians did not occur, probably, earlier
than the commencement of the Middle Period of barbarism. The experience
of these tribes has been lost, with the exception of so much as is
represented by the institutions, inventions and discoveries which they
brought with them, and possessed when they first came under historical
observation. The Grecian and Latin tribes of the Homeric and Romulian
periods afford the highest exemplification of the Upper Status of
barbarism. Their institutions were likewise pure and homogeneous, and
their experience stands directly connected with the final achievement
of civilization.

Commencing, then, with the Australians and Polynesians, following
with the American Indian tribes, and concluding with the Roman and
Grecian, who afford the highest exemplifications respectively of the
six great stages of human progress, the sum of their united experiences
may be supposed fairly to represent that of the human family from
the Middle Status of savagery to the end of ancient civilization.
Consequently, the Aryan nations will find the type of the condition of
their remote ancestors, when in savagery, in that of the Australians
and Polynesians; when in the Lower Status of barbarism in that of the
partially Village Indians of America; and when in the Middle Status
in that of the Village Indians, with which their own experience in
the Upper Status directly connects. So essentially identical are
the arts institutions and mode of life in the same status upon all
the continents, that the archaic form of the principal domestic
institutions of the Greeks and Romans must even now be sought in the
corresponding institutions of the American aborigines, as will be
shown in the course of this volume. This fact forms a part of the
accumulating evidence tending to show that the principal institutions
of mankind have been developed from a few primary germs of thought; and
that the course and manner of their development was predetermined, as
well as restricted within narrow limits of divergence, by the natural
logic of the human mind and the necessary limitations of its powers.
Progress has been found to be substantially the same in kind in tribes
and nations inhabiting different and even disconnected continents,
while in the same status, with deviations from uniformity in particular
instances produced by special causes. The argument when extended tends
to establish the unity of origin of mankind.

In studying the condition of tribes and nations in these several
ethnical periods we are dealing, substantially, with the ancient
history and condition of our own remote ancestors.



CHAPTER II.

ARTS OF SUBSISTENCE.

    SUPREMACY OF MANKIND OVER THE EARTH.—CONTROL OVER SUBSISTENCE
    THE CONDITION.—MANKIND ALONE GAINED THAT CONTROL.—SUCCESSIVE
    ARTS OF SUBSISTENCE.—I. NATURAL SUBSISTENCE; II. FISH
    SUBSISTENCE; III. FARINACEOUS SUBSISTENCE; IV. MEAT AND
    MILK SUBSISTENCE; V. UNLIMITED SUBSISTENCE THROUGH FIELD
    AGRICULTURE.—LONG INTERVALS OF TIME BETWEEN THEM.


The important fact that mankind commenced at the bottom of the scale
and worked up, is revealed in an expressive manner by their successive
arts of subsistence. Upon their skill in this direction, the whole
question of human supremacy on the earth depended. Mankind are the
only beings who may be said to have gained an absolute control over
the production of food; which at the outset they did not possess above
other animals. Without enlarging the basis of subsistence, mankind
could not have propagated themselves into other areas not possessing
the same kinds of food, and ultimately over the whole surface of
the earth; and lastly, without obtaining an absolute control over
both its variety and amount, they could not have multiplied into
populous nations. It is accordingly probable that the great epochs of
human progress have been identified, more or less directly, with the
enlargement of the sources of subsistence.

We are able to distinguish five of these sources of human food, created
by what may be called as many successive arts, one superadded to the
other, and brought out at long separated intervals of time. The first
two originated in the period of savagery, and the last three, in the
period of barbarism. They are the following, stated in the order of
their appearance:

I. _Natural Subsistence upon Fruits and Roots on a Restricted Habitat._

This proposition carries us back to the strictly primitive period of
mankind, when few in numbers, simple in subsistence, and occupying
limited areas, they were just entering upon their new career. There
is neither an art, nor an institution, that can be referred to this
period; and but one invention, that of language, which can be connected
with an epoch so remote. The kind of subsistence indicated assumes a
tropical or sub-tropical climate. In such a climate, by common consent,
the habitat of primitive man has been placed. In fruit and nut-bearing
forests under a tropical sun, we are accustomed, and with reason, to
regard our progenitors as having commenced their existence.

The races of animals preceded the race of mankind, in the order of
time. We are warranted in supposing that they were in the plenitude
of their strength and numbers when the human race first appeared. The
classical poets pictured the tribes of mankind dwelling in groves, in
caves and in forests, for the possession of which they disputed with
wild beasts[9]—while they sustained themselves with the spontaneous
fruits of the earth. If mankind commenced their career without
experience, without weapons, and surrounded with ferocious animals, it
is not improbable that they were, at least partially, tree-livers, as a
means of protection and security.

The maintenance of life, through the constant acquisition of food, is
the great burden imposed upon existence in all species of animals. As
we descend in the scale of structural organization, subsistence becomes
more and more simple at each stage, until the mystery finally vanishes.
But, in the ascending scale, it becomes increasingly difficult until
the highest structural form, that of man, is reached, when it attains
the maximum.

Intelligence from henceforth becomes a more prominent factor. Animal
food, in all probability, entered from a very early period into human
consumption; but whether it was actively sought when mankind were
essentially frugivorous in practice, though omnivorous in structural
organization, must remain a matter of conjecture. This mode of
sustenance belongs to the strictly primitive period.

II. _Fish Subsistence._

In fish must be recognized the first kind of artificial food, because
it was not fully available without cooking. Fire was first utilized,
not unlikely, for this purpose. Fish were universal in distribution,
unlimited in supply, and the only kind of food at all times attainable.
The cereals in the primitive period were still unknown, if in fact they
existed, and the hunt for game was too precarious ever to have formed
an exclusive means of human support. Upon this species of food mankind
became independent of climate and of locality; and by following the
shores of the seas and lakes, and the courses of the rivers could,
while in the savage state, spread themselves over the greater portion
of the earth’s surface. Of the fact of these migrations there is
abundant evidence in the remains of flint and stone implements of the
Status of Savagery found upon all the continents. In reliance upon
fruits and spontaneous subsistence a removal from the original habitat
would have been impossible.

Between the introduction of fish, followed by the wide migrations
named, and the cultivation of farinaceous food, the interval of time
was immense. It covers a large part of the period of savagery. But
during this interval there was an important increase in the variety and
amount of food. Such, for example, as the bread roots cooked in ground
ovens, and in the permanent addition of game through improved weapons,
and especially through the bow and arrow. This remarkable invention,
which came in after the spear and war club, and gave the first deadly
weapon for the hunt, appeared late in savagery.[10]

It has been used to mark the commencement of its Upper Status. It must
have given a powerful upward influence to ancient society, standing in
the same relation to the period of savagery, as the iron sword to the
period of barbarism, and fire-arms to the period of civilization.

From the precarious nature of all these sources of food, outside of the
great fish areas, cannibalism became the dire resort of mankind. The
ancient universality of this practice is being gradually demonstrated.

III. _Farinaceous Subsistence through Cultivation._

We now leave Savagery and enter the Lower Status of barbarism. The
cultivation of cereals and plants was unknown in the Western hemisphere
except among the tribes who had emerged from savagery; and it seems to
have been unknown in the Eastern hemisphere until after the tribes of
Asia and Europe had passed through the Lower, and had drawn near to
the close of the Middle Status of barbarism. It gives us the singular
fact that the American aborigines in the Lower Status of barbarism were
in possession of horticulture one entire ethnical period earlier than
the inhabitants of the Eastern hemisphere. It was a consequence of the
unequal endowments of the two hemispheres; the Eastern possessing all
the animals adapted to domestication, save one, and a majority of the
cereals; while the Western had only one cereal fit for cultivation,
but that the best. It tended to prolong the older period of barbarism
in the former, to shorten it in the latter; and with the advantage of
condition in this period in favor of the American aborigines. But when
the most advanced tribes in the Eastern hemisphere, at the commencement
of the Middle Period of barbarism, had domesticated animals which
gave them meat and milk, their condition, without a knowledge of the
cereals, was much superior to that of the American aborigines in the
corresponding period, with maize and plants, but without domestic
animals. The differentiation of the Semitic and Aryan families from
the mass of barbarians seems to have commenced with the domestication
of animals.

That the discovery and cultivation of the cereals by the Aryan family
was subsequent to the domestication of animals is shown by the
fact, that there are common terms for these animals in the several
dialects of the Aryan language, and no common terms for the cereals or
cultivated plants. Mommsen, after showing that the domestic animals
have the same names in the Sanskrit, Greek and Latin (which Max
Müller afterwards extended to the remaining Aryan dialects[11]) thus
proving that they were known and presumptively domesticated before
the separation of these nations from each other, proceeds as follows:
“On the other hand, we have as yet no certain proofs of the existence
of agriculture at this period. Language rather favors the negative
view. Of the Latin-Greek names of grain none occur in the Sanskrit
with the single exception of ζέα, which philologically represents
the Sanskrit _yavas_, but denotes in Indian, barley; in Greek,
_spelt_. It must indeed be granted that this diversity in the
names of cultivated plants, which so strongly contrasts with the
essential agreement in the appellations of domestic animals, does not
absolutely preclude the supposition of a common original agriculture.
The cultivation of rice among the Indians, that of wheat and spelt
among the Greeks, and that of rye and oats among the Germans and Celts,
may all be traceable to a common system of original tillage.”[12] This
last conclusion is forced. Horticulture preceded field culture, as the
garden (_hortos_) preceded the field (_ager_); and although the latter
implies boundaries, the former signifies directly an “inclosed space.”
Tillage, however, must have been older than the inclosed garden; the
natural order being first, tillage of patches of open alluvial land,
second of inclosed spaces or gardens, and third, of the field by means
of the plow drawn by animal power. Whether the cultivation of such
plants as the pea, bean, turnip, parsnip, beet, squash and melon, one
or more of them, preceded the cultivation of the cereals, we have at
present no means of knowing. Some of these have common terms in Greek
and Latin; but I am assured by our eminent philologist, Prof. W. D.
Whitney, that neither of them has a common term in Greek or Latin and
Sanskrit.

Horticulture seems to have originated more in the necessities of the
domestic animals than in those of mankind. In the Western hemisphere
it commenced with maize. This new era, although not synchronous in the
two hemispheres, had immense influence upon the destiny of mankind.
There are reasons for believing that it required ages to establish the
art of cultivation, and render farinaceous food a principal reliance.
Since in America it led to localization and to village life, it tended,
especially among the Village Indians, to take the place of fish and
game. From the cereals and cultivated plants, moreover, mankind
obtained their first impression of the possibility of an abundance of
food.

The acquisition of farinaceous food in America and of domestic animals
in Asia and Europe, were the means of delivering the advanced tribes,
thus provided, from the scourge of cannibalism, which as elsewhere
stated, there are reasons for believing was practiced universally
throughout the period of savagery upon captured enemies, and, in time
of famine, upon friends and kindred. Cannibalism in war, practiced by
war parties in the field, survived among the American aborigines, not
only in the Lower, but also in the Middle Status of barbarism, as, for
example, among the Iroquois and the Aztecs; but the general practice
had disappeared. This forcibly illustrates the great importance which
is exercised by a permanent increase of food in ameliorating the
condition of mankind.

IV. _Meat and Milk Subsistence._

The absence of animals adapted to domestication in the Western
hemisphere, excepting the llama,[13] and the specific differences in
the cereals of the two hemispheres exercised an important influence
upon the relative advancement of their inhabitants. While this
inequality of endowments was immaterial to mankind in the period
of savagery, and not marked in its effects in the Lower Status of
barbarism, it made an essential difference with that portion who had
attained to the Middle Status. The domestication of animals provided
a permanent meat and milk subsistence which tended to differentiate
the tribes which possessed them from the mass of other barbarians.
In the Western hemisphere, meat was restricted to the precarious
supplies of game. This limitation upon an essential species of food
was unfavorable to the Village Indians; and doubtless sufficiently
explains the inferior size of the brain among them in comparison with
that of Indians in the Lower Status of barbarism. In the Eastern
hemisphere, the domestication of animals enabled the thrifty and
industrious to secure for themselves a permanent supply of animal food,
including milk; the healthful and invigorating influence of which upon
the race, and especially upon children, was undoubtedly remarkable.
It is at least supposable that the Aryan and Semitic families owe
their pre-eminent endowments to the great scale upon which, as far
back as our knowledge extends, they have identified themselves with
the maintenance in numbers of the domestic animals. In fact, they
incorporated them, flesh, milk, and muscle into their plan of life.[14]
No other family of mankind have done this to an equal extent, and the
Aryan have done it to a greater extent than the Semitic.

The domestication of animals gradually introduced a new mode of life,
the pastoral, upon the plains of the Euphrates and of India, and upon
the steppes of Asia; on the confines of one or the other of which the
domestication of animals was probably first accomplished. To these
areas, their oldest traditions and their histories alike refer them.
They were thus drawn to regions which, so far from being the cradle
lands of the human race, were areas they would not have occupied as
savages, or as barbarians in the Lower Status of barbarism, to whom
forest areas were natural homes. After becoming habituated to pastoral
life, it must have been impossible for either of these families to
re-enter the forest areas of Western Asia and of Europe with their
flocks and herds, without first learning to cultivate some of the
cereals with which to subsist the latter at a distance from the grass
plains. It seems extremely probable, therefore, as before stated, that
the cultivation of the cereals originated in the necessities of the
domestic animals, and in connection with these western migrations; and
that the use of farinaceous food by these tribes was a consequence of
the knowledge thus acquired.

In the Western hemisphere, the aborigines were enabled to advance
generally into the Lower Status of barbarism, and a portion of them
into the Middle Status, without domestic animals, excepting the
llama in Peru, and upon a single cereal, maize, with the adjuncts of
the bean, squash, and tobacco, and in some areas, cacao, cotton and
pepper. But maize, from its growth in the hill—which favored direct
cultivation—from its useableness both green and ripe, and from its
abundant yield and nutritive properties, was a richer endowment in aid
of early human progress than all other cereals put together. It serves
to explain the remarkable progress the American aborigines had made
without the domestic animals; the Peruvians having produced bronze,
which stands next, and quite near, in the order of time, to the process
of smelting iron ore.

V. _Unlimited Subsistence through Field Agriculture._

The domestic animals supplementing human muscle with animal power,
contributed a new factor of the highest value. In course of time, the
production of iron gave the plow with an iron point, and a better
spade and axe. Out of these, and the previous horticulture, came field
agriculture; and with it, for the first time, unlimited subsistence.
The plow drawn by animal power may be regarded as inaugurating a
new art. Now, for the first time, came the thought of reducing the
forest, and bringing wide fields under cultivation.[15] Moreover,
dense populations in limited areas now became possible. Prior to
field agriculture it is not probable that half a million people were
developed and held together under one government in any part of the
earth. If exceptions occurred, they must have resulted from pastoral
life on the plains, or from horticulture improved by irrigation, under
peculiar and exceptional conditions.


In the course of these pages it will become necessary to speak of the
family as it existed in different ethnical periods; its form in one
period being sometimes entirely different from its form in another. In
Part III these several forms of the family will be treated specially.
But as they will be frequently mentioned in the next ensuing Part,
they should at least be defined in advance for the information of the
reader. They are the following:

I. _The Consanguine Family._

It was founded upon the intermarriage of brothers and sisters in a
group. Evidence still remains in the oldest of existing systems of
Consanguinity, the Malayan, tending to show that this, the first
form of the family, was anciently as universal as this system of
consanguinity which it created.

II. _The Punaluan Family._

Its name is derived from the Hawaiian relationship of _Punalua_. It
was founded upon the intermarriage of several brothers to each other’s
wives in a group; and of several sisters to each other’s husbands
in a group. But the term brother, as here used, included the first,
second, third, and even more remote male cousins, all of whom were
considered brothers to each other, as we consider own brothers; and the
term sister included the first, second, third, and even more remote
female cousins, all of whom were sisters to each other, the same as own
sisters. This form of the family supervened upon the consanguine. It
created the Turanian and Ganowánian systems of consanguinity. Both this
and the previous form belong to the period of savagery.

III. _The Syndyasmian Family._

The term is from συνδυάζω, to pair, συνδυασμός, a joining two together.
It was founded upon the pairing of a male with a female under the form
of marriage, but without an exclusive cohabitation. It was the germ of
the Monogamian Family. Divorce or separation was at the option of both
husband and wife. This form of the family failed to create a system of
consanguinity.

IV. _The Patriarchal Family._

It was founded upon the marriage of one man to several wives. The term
is here used in a restricted sense to define the special family of the
Hebrew pastoral tribes, the chiefs and principal men of which practiced
polygamy. It exercised but little influence upon human affairs for want
of universality.

V. _The Monogamian Family._

It was founded upon the marriage of one man with one woman, with an
exclusive cohabitation; the latter constituting the essential element
of the institution. It is pre-eminently the family of civilized
society, and was therefore essentially modern. This form of the family
also created an independent system of consanguinity.

Evidence will elsewhere be produced tending to show both the existence
and the general prevalence of these several forms of the family at
different stages of human progress.



CHAPTER III.

RATIO OF HUMAN PROGRESS.

    RETROSPECT ON THE LINES OF HUMAN PROGRESS.—PRINCIPAL
    CONTRIBUTIONS OF MODERN CIVILIZATION.—OF ANCIENT
    CIVILIZATION.—OF LATER PERIOD OF BARBARISM.—OF MIDDLE
    PERIOD.—OF OLDER PERIOD.—OF PERIOD OF SAVAGERY.—HUMBLE
    CONDITION OF PRIMITIVE MAN.—HUMAN PROGRESS IN A GEOMETRICAL
    RATIO.—RELATIVE LENGTH OF ETHNICAL PERIODS.—APPEARANCE OF
    SEMITIC AND ARYAN FAMILIES.


It is well to obtain an impression of the relative amount and of the
ratio of human progress in the several ethnical periods named, by
grouping together the achievements of each, and comparing them with
each other as distinct classes of facts. This will also enable us to
form some conception of the relative duration of these periods. To
render it forcible, such a survey must be general, and in the nature
of a recapitulation. It should, likewise, be limited to the principal
works of each period.

Before man could have attained to the civilized state it was necessary
that he should gain all the elements of civilization. This implies
an amazing change of condition, first from a primitive savage to a
barbarian of the lowest type, and then from the latter to a Greek
of the Homeric period, or to a Hebrew of the time of Abraham. The
progressive development which history records in the period of
civilization was not less true of man in each of the previous periods.

By re-ascending along the several lines of human progress toward
the primitive ages of man’s existence, and removing one by one his
principal institutions, inventions and discoveries, in the order in
which they have appeared, the advance made in each period will be
realized.

The principal contributions of modern civilization are the electric
telegraph; coal gas; the spinning-jenny; and the power loom; the
steam-engine with its numerous dependent machines, including the
locomotive, the railway, and the steam-ship; the telescope; the
discovery of the ponderability of the atmosphere and of the solar
system; the art of printing; the canal lock; the mariner’s compass;
and gunpowder. The mass of other inventions, such, for example, as
the Ericsson propeller, will be found to hinge upon one or another of
those named as antecedents: but there are exceptions, as photography,
and numerous machines not necessary to be noticed. With these also
should be removed the modern sciences; religious freedom and the
common schools; representative democracy; constitutional monarchy
with parliaments; the feudal kingdom; modern privileged classes;
international, statute and common law.

Modern civilization recovered and absorbed whatever was valuable in
the ancient civilizations; and although its contributions to the sum
of human knowledge have been vast, brilliant and rapid, they are far
from being so disproportionately large as to overshadow the ancient
civilizations and sink them into comparative insignificance.

Passing over the mediæval period, which gave Gothic architecture,
feudal aristocracy with hereditary titles of rank, and a hierarchy
under the headship of a pope, we enter the Roman and Grecian
civilizations. They will be found deficient in great inventions and
discoveries, but distinguished in art, in philosophy, and in organic
institutions. The principal contributions of these civilizations
were imperial and kingly government; the civil law; Christianity;
mixed aristocratical and democratical government, with a senate and
consuls; democratical government with a council and popular assembly;
the organization of armies into cavalry and infantry, with military
discipline; the establishment of navies, with the practice of naval
warfare; the formation of great cities, with municipal law; commerce
on the seas; the coinage of money; and the state, founded upon
territory and upon property; and among inventions, fire-baked brick,
the crane,[16] the water-wheel for driving mills, the bridge, aqueduct
and sewer; lead pipe used as a conduit with the faucet; the arch,
the balance scale; the arts and sciences of the classical period,
with their results, including the orders of architecture; the Arabic
numerals, and alphabetic writing.

These civilizations drew largely from, as well as rested upon, the
inventions and discoveries and the institutions of the previous
period of barbarism. The achievements of civilized man, although very
great and remarkable, are nevertheless very far from sufficient to
eclipse the works of man as a barbarian. As such he had wrought out
and possessed all the elements of civilization, excepting alphabetic
writing. His achievements as a barbarian should be considered in their
relation to the sum of human progress; and we may be forced to admit
that they transcend, in relative importance, all his subsequent works.

The use of writing, or its equivalent in hieroglyphics upon stone,
affords a fair test of the commencement of civilization.[17] Without
literary records neither history nor civilization can properly be said
to exist. The production of the Homeric poems, whether transmitted
orally or committed to writing at the time, fixes with sufficient
nearness the introduction of civilization among the Greeks. These
poems, ever fresh and ever marvelous, possess an ethnological value
which enhances immensely their other excellences. This is especially
true of the Iliad, which contains the oldest as well as the most
circumstantial account now existing of the progress of mankind up to
the time of its composition. Strabo compliments Homer as the father of
geographical science;[18] but the great poet has given, perhaps without
design, what was infinitely more important to succeeding generations:
namely, a remarkably full exposition of the arts, usages, inventions
and discoveries, and mode of life of the ancient Greeks. It presents
our first comprehensive picture of Aryan society while still in
barbarism, showing the progress then made, and of what particulars it
consisted. Through these poems we are enabled confidently to state that
certain things were known among the Greeks before they entered upon
civilization. They also cast an illuminating light far backward into
the period of barbarism.

Using the Homeric poems as a guide and continuing the retrospect into
the Later Period of barbarism, let us strike off from the knowledge
and experience of mankind the invention of poetry; the ancient
mythology in its elaborate form, with the Olympian divinities; temple
architecture; the knowledge of the cereals, excepting maize and
cultivated plants, with field agriculture;[19] cities encompassed with
walls of stone, with battlements, towers and gates; the use of marble
in architecture;[20] ship-building with plank and probably with the use
of nails;[21] the wagon and the chariot;[22] metallic plate armor;[23]
the copper-pointed spear and embossed shield;[24] the iron sword;[25]
the manufacture of wine, probably;[26] the mechanical powers excepting
the screw; the potter’s wheel and the hand-mill for grinding grain;[27]
woven fabrics of linen and woolen from the loom;[28] the iron axe and
spade;[29] the iron hatchet and adz;[30] the hammer and the anvil;[31]
the bellows and the forge;[32] and the side-hill furnace for smelting
iron ore, together with a knowledge of iron. Along with the above-named
acquisitions must be removed the monogamian family; military
democracies of the heroic age; the later phase of the organization into
gentes, phratries and tribes; the agora or popular assembly, probably; a
knowledge of individual property in houses and lands; and the advanced
form of municipal life in fortified cities. When this has been done,
the highest class of barbarians will have surrendered the principal
portion of their marvelous works, together with the mental and moral
growth thereby acquired.

From this point backward through the Middle Period of barbarism the
indications become less distinct, and the relative order in which
institutions, inventions and discoveries appeared is less clear; but
we are not without some knowledge to guide our steps even in these
distant ages of the Aryan family. For reasons previously stated, other
families, besides the Aryan, may now be resorted to for the desired
information.

Entering next the Middle Period, let us, in like manner, strike out
of human experience the process of making bronze; flocks and herds
of domestic animals;[33] communal houses with walls of adobe, and of
dressed stone laid in courses with mortar of lime and sand; cyclopean
walls; lake dwellings constructed on piles; the knowledge of native
metals,[34] with the use of charcoal and the crucible for melting them;
the copper axe and chisel; the shuttle and embryo loom; cultivation
by irrigation, causeways, reservoirs and irrigating canals; paved
roads; osier suspension bridges; personal gods, with a priesthood
distinguished by a costume, and organized in a hierarchy; human
sacrifices; military democracies of the Aztec type; woven fabrics of
cotton and other vegetable fibre in the Western hemisphere, and of wool
and flax in the Eastern; ornamental pottery; the sword of wood, with
the edges pointed with flints; polished flint and stone implements; a
knowledge of cotton and flax; and the domestic animals.

The aggregate of achievements in this period was less than in that
which followed; but in its relations to the sum of human progress
it was very great. It includes the domestication of animals in the
Eastern hemisphere, which introduced in time a permanent meat and milk
subsistence, and ultimately field agriculture; and also inaugurated
those experiments with the native metals which resulted in producing
bronze,[35] as well as prepared the way for the higher process of
smelting iron ore. In the Western hemisphere it was signalized by the
discovery and treatment of the native metals, which resulted in the
production independently of bronze; by the introduction of irrigation
in the cultivation of maize and plants, and by the use of adobe-brick
and stone in the construction of great joint tenement houses in the
nature of fortresses.

Resuming the retrospect and entering the Older Period of barbarism,
let us next remove from human acquisitions the confederacy, based upon
gentes, phratries and tribes under the government of a council of
chiefs which gave a more highly organized state of society than before
that had been known. Also the discovery and cultivation of maize and
the bean, squash and tobacco, in the Western hemisphere, together with
a knowledge of farinaceous food; finger weaving with warp and woof;
the kilt, moccasin and leggin of tanned deer-skin; the blow-gun for
bird shooting; the village stockade for defense; tribal games; element
worship, with a vague recognition of the Great Spirit; cannibalism in
time of war; and lastly, the art of pottery.

As we ascend in the order of time and of development, but descend in
the scale of human advancement, inventions become more simple, and
more direct in their relations to primary wants; and institutions
approach nearer and nearer to the elementary form of a gens composed
of consanguinei, under a chief of their own election, and to the tribe
composed of kindred gentes, under the government of a council of
chiefs. The condition of Asiatic and European tribes in this period,
(for the Aryan and Semitic families did not probably then exist), is
substantially lost. It is represented by the remains of ancient art
between the invention of pottery and the domestication of animals; and
includes the people who formed the shell-heaps on the coast of the
Baltic, who seem to have domesticated the dog, but no other animals.

In any just estimate of the magnitude of the achievements of mankind in
the three sub-periods of barbarism, they must be regarded as immense,
not only in number and in intrinsic value, but also in the mental and
moral development by which they were necessarily accompanied.

Ascending next through the prolonged period of savagery, let us strike
out of human knowledge the organization into gentes, phratries and
tribes; the syndyasmian family; the worship of the elements in its
lowest form; syllabical language; the bow and arrow; stone and bone
implements; cane and splint baskets; skin garments; the punaluan
family; the organization upon the basis of sex; the village, consisting
of clustered houses; boat craft, including the bark and dug-out canoe;
the spear pointed with flint, and the war club; flint implements of
the ruder kinds; the consanguine family; monosyllabical language;
fetishism; cannibalism; a knowledge of the use of fire; and lastly,
gesture language.[36] When this work of elimination has been done
in the order in which these several acquisitions were made, we shall
have approached quite near the infantile period of man’s existence,
when mankind were learning the use of fire, which rendered possible
a fish subsistence and a change of habitat, and when they were
attempting the formation of articulate language. In a condition so
absolutely primitive, man is seen to be not only a child in the scale
of humanity, but possessed of a brain into which not a thought or
conception expressed by these institutions, inventions and discoveries
had penetrated;—in a word, he stands at the bottom of the scale, but
potentially all he has since become.

With the production of inventions and discoveries, and with the growth
of institutions, the human mind necessarily grew and expanded; and
we are led to recognize a gradual enlargement of the brain itself,
particularly of the cerebral portion. The slowness of this mental
growth was inevitable, in the period of savagery, from the extreme
difficulty of compassing the simplest invention out of nothing, or
with next to nothing to assist mental effort; and of discovering
any substance or force in nature available in such a rude condition
of life. It was not less difficult to organize the simplest form
of society out of such savage and intractable materials. The first
inventions and the first social organizations were doubtless the
hardest to achieve, and were consequently separated from each other
by the longest intervals of time. A striking illustration is found in
the successive forms of the family. In this law of progress, which
works in a geometrical ratio, a sufficient explanation is found of the
prolonged duration of the period of savagery.

That the early condition of mankind was substantially as above
indicated is not exclusively a recent, nor even a modern opinion. Some
of the ancient poets and philosophers recognized the fact, that mankind
commenced in a state of extreme rudeness from which they had risen by
slow and successive steps. They also perceived that the course of their
development was registered by a progressive series of inventions and
discoveries, but without noticing as fully the more conclusive argument
from social institutions.

The important question of the ratio of this progress, which has a
direct bearing upon the relative length of the several ethnical
periods, now presents itself. Human progress, from first to last, has
been in a ratio not rigorously but essentially geometrical. This is
plain on the face of the facts; and it could not, theoretically, have
occurred in any other way. Every item of absolute knowledge gained
became a factor in further acquisitions, until the present complexity
of knowledge was attained. Consequently, while progress was slowest
in time in the first period, and most rapid in the last, the relative
amount may have been greatest in the first, when the achievements of
either period are considered in their relations to the sum. It may be
suggested, as not improbable of ultimate recognition, that the progress
of mankind in the period of savagery, in its relations to the sum of
human progress, was greater in degree than it was afterwards in the
three sub-periods of barbarism; and that the progress made in the whole
period of barbarism was, in like manner, greater in degree than it has
been since in the entire period of civilization.

What may have been the relative length of these ethnical periods is
also a fair subject of speculation. An exact measure is not attainable,
but an approximation may be attempted. On the theory of geometrical
progression, the period of savagery was necessarily longer in duration
than the period of barbarism, as the latter was longer than the period
of civilization. If we assume a hundred thousand years as the measure
of man’s existence upon the earth in order to find the relative length
of each period,—and for this purpose, it may have been longer or
shorter,—it will be seen at once that at least sixty thousand years
must be assigned to the period of savagery. Three-fifths of the life
of the most advanced portion of the human race, on this apportionment,
were spent in savagery. Of the remaining years, twenty thousand, or
one-fifth, should be assigned to the Older Period of barbarism. For the
Middle and Later Periods there remain fifteen thousand years, leaving
five thousand, more or less, for the period of civilization.

The relative length of the period of savagery is more likely under
than over stated. Without discussing the principles on which this
apportionment is made, it may be remarked that in addition to the
argument from the geometrical progression under which human development
of necessity has occurred, a graduated scale of progress has been
universally observed in remains of ancient art, and this will be found
equally true of institutions. It is a conclusion of deep importance
in ethnology that the experience of mankind in savagery was longer in
duration than all their subsequent experience, and that the period of
civilization covers but a fragment of the life of the race.

Two families of mankind, the Aryan and Semitic, by the commingling of
diverse stocks, superiority of subsistence or advantage of position,
and possibly from all together, were the first to emerge from
barbarism. They were substantially the founders of civilization.[37]
But their existence as distinct families was undoubtedly, in a
comparative sense, a late event. Their progenitors are lost in the
undistinguishable mass of earlier barbarians. The first ascertained
appearance of the Aryan family was in connection with the domestic
animals, at which time they were one people in language and
nationality. It is not probable that the Aryan or Semitic families
were developed into individuality earlier than the commencement of the
Middle Period of barbarism, and that their differentiation from the
mass of barbarians occurred through their acquisition of the domestic
animals.

The most advanced portion of the human race were halted, so to express
it, at certain stages of progress, until some great invention or
discovery, such as the domestication of animals or the smelting of iron
ore, gave a new and powerful impulse forward. While thus restrained,
the ruder tribes, continually advancing, approached in different
degrees of nearness to the same status; for wherever a continental
connection existed, all the tribes must have shared in some measure in
each other’s progress. All great inventions and discoveries propagate
themselves; but the inferior tribes must have appreciated their value
before they could appropriate them. In the continental areas certain
tribes would lead; but the leadership would be apt to shift a number
of times in the course of an ethnical period. The destruction of the
ethnic bond and life of particular tribes, followed by their decadence,
must have arrested for a time, in many instances and in all periods,
the upward flow of human progress. From the Middle Period of barbarism,
however, the Aryan and Semitic families seem fairly to represent the
central threads of this progress, which in the period of civilization
has been gradually assumed by the Aryan family alone.

The truth of this general position may be illustrated by the condition
of the American aborigines at the epoch of their discovery. They
commenced their career on the American continent in savagery; and,
although possessed of inferior mental endowments, the body of them had
emerged from savagery and attained to the Lower Status of barbarism;
whilst a portion of them, the Village Indians of North and South
America, had risen to the Middle Status. They had domesticated the
llama, the only quadruped native to the continent which promised
usefulness in the domesticated state, and had produced bronze by
alloying copper with tin. They needed but one invention, and that the
greatest, the art of smelting iron ore, to advance themselves into
the Upper Status. Considering the absence of all connection with the
most advanced portion of the human family in the Eastern hemisphere,
their progress in unaided self-development from the savage state must
be accounted remarkable. While the Asiatic and European were waiting
patiently for the boon of iron tools, the American Indian was drawing
near to the possession of bronze, which stands next to iron in the
order of time. During this period of arrested progress in the Eastern
hemisphere, the American aborigines advanced themselves, not to the
status in which they were found, but sufficiently near to reach it
while the former were passing through the last period of barbarism, and
the first four thousand years of civilization. It gives us a measure of
the length of time they had fallen behind the Aryan family in the race
of progress: namely the duration of the Later Period of barbarism, to
which the years of civilization must be added. The Aryan and Ganowánian
families together exemplify the entire experience of man in five
ethnical periods, with the exception of the first portion of the Later
Period of savagery.

Savagery was the formative period of the human race. Commencing at zero
in knowledge and experience, without fire, without articulate speech
and without arts, our savage progenitors fought the great battle, first
for existence, and then for progress, until they secured safety from
ferocious animals, and permanent subsistence. Out of these efforts
there came gradually a developed speech, and the occupation of the
entire surface of the earth. But society from its rudeness was still
incapable of organization in numbers. When the most advanced portion
of mankind had emerged from savagery, and entered the Lower Status of
barbarism, the entire population of the earth must have been small in
numbers. The earliest inventions were the most difficult to accomplish
because of the feebleness of the power of abstract reasoning. Each
substantial item of knowledge gained would form a basis for further
advancement; but this must have been nearly imperceptible for ages
upon ages, the obstacles to progress nearly balancing the energies
arrayed against them. The achievements of savagery are not particularly
remarkable in character, but they represent an amazing amount of
persistent labor with feeble means continued through long periods of
time before reaching a fair degree of completeness. The bow and arrow
afford an illustration.

The inferiority of savage man in the mental and moral scale,
undeveloped, inexperienced, and held down by his low animal appetites
and passions, though reluctantly recognized, is, nevertheless,
substantially demonstrated by the remains of ancient art in flint, stone
and bone implements, by his cave life in certain areas, and by his
osteological remains. It is still further illustrated by the present
condition of tribes of savages in a low state of development, left
in isolated sections of the earth as monuments of the past. And yet
to this great period of savagery belongs the formation of articulate
language and its advancement to the syllabical stage, the establishment
of two forms of the family, and possibly a third, and the organization
into gentes which gave the first form of society worthy of the name.
All these conclusions are involved in the proposition, stated at the
outset, that mankind commenced their career at the bottom of the scale;
which “modern science claims to be proving by the most careful and
exhaustive study of man and his works.”[38]

In like manner, the great period of barbarism was signalized by four
events of pre-eminent importance: namely, the domestication of animals,
the discovery of the cereals, the use of stone in architecture, and the
invention of the process of smelting iron ore. Commencing probably with
the dog as a companion in the hunt, followed at a later period by the
capture of the young of other animals and rearing them, not unlikely,
from the merest freak of fancy, it required time and experience to
discover the utility of each, to find means of raising them in numbers
and to learn the forbearance necessary to spare them in the face of
hunger. Could the special history of the domestication of each animal
be known, it would exhibit a series of marvelous facts. The experiment
carried, locked up in its doubtful chances, much of the subsequent
destiny of mankind. Secondly, the acquisition of farinaceous food by
cultivation must be regarded as one of the greatest events in human
experience. It was less essential in the Eastern hemisphere, after the
domestication of animals, than in the Western, where it became the
instrument of advancing a large portion of the American aborigines into
the Lower, and another portion into the Middle Status of barbarism. If
mankind had never advanced beyond this last condition, they had the
means of a comparatively easy and enjoyable life. Thirdly, with the
use of adobe-brick and of stone in house building, an improved mode
of life was introduced, eminently calculated to stimulate the mental
capacities, and to create the habit of industry,—the fertile source of
improvements. But, in its relations to the high career of mankind, the
fourth invention must be held the greatest event in human experience,
preparatory to civilization. When the barbarian, advancing step by
step, had discovered the native metals, and learned to melt them in the
crucible and to cast them in moulds; when he had alloyed native copper
with tin and produced bronze; and, finally, when by a still greater
effort of thought he had invented the furnace, and produced iron from
the ore, nine-tenths of the battle for civilization was gained.[39]
Furnished with iron tools, capable of holding both an edge and a point,
mankind were certain of attaining to civilization. The production of
iron was the event of events in human experience, without a parallel,
and without an equal, beside which all other inventions and discoveries
were inconsiderable, or at least subordinate. Out of it came the
metallic hammer and anvil, the axe and the chisel, the plow with an
iron point, the iron sword; in fine, the basis of civilization, which
may be said to rest upon this metal. The want of iron tools arrested
the progress of mankind in barbarism. There they would have remained
to the present hour, had they failed to bridge the chasm. It seems
probable that the conception and the process of smelting iron ore came
but once to man. It would be a singular satisfaction could it be known
to what tribe and family we are indebted for this knowledge, and with
it for civilization.

The Semitic family were then in advance of the Aryan, and in the lead
of the human race. They gave the phonetic alphabet to mankind and it
seems not unlikely the knowledge of iron as well.

At the epoch of the Homeric poems, the Grecian tribes had made immense
material progress. All the common metals were known, including the
process of smelting ores, and possibly of changing iron into steel;
the principal cereals had been discovered, together with the art of
cultivation, and the use of the plow in field agriculture; the dog,
the horse, the ass, the cow, the sow, the sheep and the goat had
been domesticated and reared in flocks and herds, as has been shown.
Architecture had produced a house constructed of durable materials,
containing separate apartments,[40] and consisting of more than
a single story;[41] ship building, weapons, textile fabrics, the
manufacture of wine from the grape, the cultivation of the apple, the
pear, the olive and the fig,[42] together with comfortable apparel,
and useful implements and utensils, had been produced and brought
into human use.[43] But the early history of mankind was lost in the
oblivion of the ages that had passed away. Tradition ascended to an
anterior barbarism through which it was unable to penetrate. Language
had attained such development that poetry of the highest structural
form was about to embody the inspirations of genius. The closing period
of barbarism brought this portion of the human family to the threshold
of civilization, animated by the great attainments of the past, grown
hardy and intelligent in the school of experience, and with the
undisciplined imagination in the full splendor of its creative powers.
Barbarism ends with the production of grand barbarians. Whilst the
condition of society in this period was understood by the later Greek
and Roman writers, the anterior state, with its distinctive culture and
experience, was as deeply concealed from their apprehension as from our
own; except as occupying a nearer stand-point in time, they saw more
distinctly the relations of the present with the past. It was evident
to them that a certain sequence existed in the series of inventions and
discoveries, as well as a certain order of development of institutions,
through which mankind had advanced themselves from the status of
savagery to that of the Homeric age; but the immense interval of time
between the two conditions does not appear to have been made a subject
even of speculative consideration.



PART II.

GROWTH OF THE IDEA OF GOVERNMENT.



CHAPTER I.

ORGANIZATION OF SOCIETY UPON THE BASIS OF SEX.

    AUSTRALIAN CLASSES.—ORGANIZED UPON SEX.—ARCHAIC CHARACTER OF
    THE ORGANIZATION.—AUSTRALIAN GENTES.—THE EIGHT CLASSES.—RULE
    OF MARRIAGE.—DESCENT IN THE FEMALE LINE.—STUPENDOUS
    CONJUGAL SYSTEM.—TWO MALE AND TWO FEMALE CLASSES IN EACH
    GENS.—INNOVATIONS UPON THE CLASSES.—GENS STILL RUDIMENTARY.


In treating the subject of the growth of the idea of government, the
organization into gentes on the basis of kin naturally suggests itself
as the archaic frame-work of ancient society; but there is a still
older and more archaic organization, that into classes on the basis of
sex, which first demands attention. It will not be taken up because
of its novelty in human experience, but for the higher reason that it
seems to contain the germinal principle of the gens. If this inference
is warranted by the facts it will give to this organization into male
and female classes, now found in full vitality among the Australian
aborigines, an ancient prevalence as wide spread, in the tribes of
mankind, as the original organization into gentes.

It will soon be perceived that low down in savagery community of
husbands and wives, within prescribed limits, was the central principle
of the social system. The marital rights and privileges, (_jura
conjugialia_,[44]) established in the group, grew into a stupendous
scheme, which became the organic principle on which society was
constituted. From the nature of the case these rights and privileges
rooted themselves so firmly that emancipation from them was slowly
accomplished through movements which resulted in unconscious
reformations. Accordingly it will be found that the family has advanced
from a lower to a higher form as the range of this conjugal system was
gradually reduced. The family, commencing in the consanguine, founded
upon the intermarriage of brothers and sisters in a group, passed
into the second form, the punaluan, under a social system akin to
the Australian classes, which broke up the first species of marriage
by substituting groups of brothers who shared their wives in common,
and groups of sisters who shared their husbands in common,—marriage
in both cases being in the group. The organization into classes upon
sex, and the subsequent higher organization into gentes upon kin,
must be regarded as the results of great social movements worked
out unconsciously through natural selection. For these reasons
the Australian system, about to be presented, deserves attentive
consideration, although it carries us into a low grade of human life.
It represents a striking phase of the ancient social history of our
race.

The organization into classes on the basis of sex, and the inchoate
organization into gentes on the basis of kin, now prevail among
that portion of the Australian aborigines who speak the Kamilaroi
language. They inhabit the Darling River district north of Sydney.
Both organizations are also found in other Australian tribes, and so
wide spread as to render probable their ancient universal prevalence
among them. It is evident from internal considerations that the male
and female classes are older than the gentes: firstly, because the
gentile organization is higher than that into classes; and secondly,
because the former, among the Kamilaroi, are in process of overthrowing
the latter. The class in its male and female branches is the unit of
their social system, which place rightfully belongs to the gens when in
full development. A remarkable combination of facts is thus presented;
namely, a sexual and a gentile organization, both in existence at the
same time, the former holding the central position, and the latter
inchoate but advancing to completeness through encroachments upon the
former.

This organization upon sex has not been found, as yet, in any tribes of
savages out of Australia, but the slow development of these islanders
in their secluded habitat, and the more archaic character of the
organization upon sex than that into gentes, suggests the conjecture,
that the former may have been universal in such branches of the human
family as afterwards possessed the gentile organization. Although
the class system, when traced out fully, involves some bewildering
complications, it will reward the attention necessary for its mastery.
As a curious social organization among savages it possesses but
little interest; but as the most primitive form of society hitherto
discovered, and more especially with the contingent probability that
the remote progenitors of our own Aryan family were once similarly
organized, it becomes important, and may prove instructive.

The Australians rank below the Polynesians, and far below the American
aborigines. They stand below the African negro and near the bottom of
the scale. Their social institutions, therefore, must approach the
primitive type as nearly as those of any existing people.[45]

Inasmuch as the gens is made the subject of the next succeeding
chapter, it will be introduced in this without discussion, and only for
the necessary explanation of the classes.

The Kamilaroi are divided into six gentes, standing with reference to
the right of marriage, in two divisions, as follows:

I. 1. Iguana, (Duli). 2. Kangaroo, (Murriira).[46] 3. Opossum, (Mute).

II. 4. Emu, (Dinoun). 5. Bandicoot, (Bilba). 6. Black-snake, (Nurai).

Originally the first three gentes were not allowed to intermarry
with each other, because they were subdivisions of an original gens;
but they were permitted to marry into either of the other gentes, and
_vice versâ_. This ancient rule is now modified, among the Kamilaroi,
in certain definite particulars, but not carried to the full extent of
permitting marriage into any gens but that of the individual. Neither
males nor females can marry into their own gens, the prohibition being
absolute. Descent is in the female line, which assigns the children to
the gens of their mother. These are among the essential characteristics
of the gens, wherever this institution is found in its archaic form. In
its external features, therefore, it is perfect and complete among the
Kamilaroi.

But there is a further and older division of the people into eight
classes, four of which are composed exclusively of males, and four
exclusively of females. It is accompanied with a regulation in respect
to marriage and descent which obstructs the gens, and demonstrates
that the latter organization is in process of development into its
true logical form. One only of the four classes of males can marry
into one only of the four classes of females. In the sequel it will be
found that all the males of one class are, theoretically, the husbands
of all the females of the class into which they are allowed to marry.
Moreover, if the male belongs to one of the first three gentes the
female must belong to one of the opposite three. Marriage is thus
restricted to a portion of the males of one gens, with a portion of the
females of another gens, which is opposed to the true theory of the
gentile institution, for all the members of each gens should be allowed
to marry persons of the opposite sex in all the gentes except their own.

The classes are the following:

      _Male._           _Female._
    1. Ippai.         1. Ippata.
    2. Kumbo.         2. Buta.
    3. Murri.         3. Mata.
    4. Kubbi.         4. Kapota.

All the Ippais, of whatever gens, are brothers to each other.
Theoretically, they are descended from a supposed common female
ancestor. All the Kumbos are the same; and so are all the Murris and
Kubbis, respectively, and for the same reason. In like manner, all
the Ippatas, of whatever gens, are sisters to each other, and for the
same reason; all the Butas are the same, and so are all the Matas and
Kapotas, respectively. In the next place, all the Ippais and Ippatas
are brothers and sisters to each other, whether children of the same
mother or collateral consanguinei, and in whatever gens they are found.
The Kumbos and Butas are brothers and sisters; and so are the Murris
and Matas, and the Kubbis and Kapotas respectively. If an Ippai and
Ippata meet, who have never seen each other before, they address each
other as brother and sister. The Kamilaroi, therefore, are organized
into four great primary groups of brothers and sisters, each group
being composed of a male and a female branch; but intermingled over
the areas of their occupation. Founded upon sex, instead of kin, it is
older than the gentes, and more archaic, it may be repeated, than any
form of society hitherto known.

The classes embody the germ of the gens, but fall short of its
realization. In reality the Ippais and Ippatas form a single class in
two branches, and since they cannot intermarry they would form the
basis of a gens but for the reason that they fall under two names, each
of which is integral for certain purposes, and for the further reason
that their children take different names from their own. The division
into classes is upon sex instead of kin, and has its primary relation
to a rule of marriage as remarkable as it is original.

Since brothers and sisters are not allowed to intermarry, the classes
stand to each other in a different order with respect to the right
of marriage, or rather, of cohabitation, which better expresses the
relation. Such was the original law, thus:

    Ippai can marry Kapota, and no other.
    Kumbo   ”   ”   Mata,    ”   ”   ”
    Murri   ”   ”   Buta,    ”   ”   ”
    Kubbi   ”   ”   Ippata,  ”   ”   ”

This exclusive scheme has been modified in one particular, as will
hereafter be shown: namely, in giving to each class of males the right
of intermarriage with one additional class of females. In this fact,
evidence of the encroachment of the gens upon the class is furnished,
tending to the overthrow of the latter.

It is thus seen that each male in the selection of a wife, is limited
to one-fourth part of all the Kamilaroi females. This, however, is
not the remarkable part of the system. Theoretically every Kapota
is the wife of every Ippai; every Mata is the wife of every Kumbo;
every Buta is the wife of every Murri; and every Ippata of every
Kubbi. Upon this material point the information is specific. Mr.
Fison, before mentioned, after observing that Mr. Lance had “had much
intercourse with the natives, having lived among them many years on
frontier cattle-stations on the Darling River, and in the trans-Darling
country,” quotes from his letter as follows: “If a Kubbi meets a
stranger Ippata, they address each other as _Goleer_ = Spouse.... A
Kubbi thus meeting an Ippata, even though she were of another tribe,
would treat her as his wife, and his right to do so would be recognized
by her tribe.” Every Ippata within the immediate circle of his
acquaintance would consequently be his wife as well.

Here we find, in a direct and definite form, punaluan marriage in
a group of unusual extent; but broken up into lesser groups, each
a miniature representation of the whole, united for habitation
and subsistence. Under the conjugal system thus brought to light,
one-quarter of all the males are united in marriage with one-quarter of
all the females of the Kamilaroi tribes. This picture of savage life
need not revolt the mind, because to them it was a form of the marriage
relation, and therefore devoid of impropriety. It is but an extended
form of polygyny and polyandry, which, within narrower limits, have
prevailed universally among savage tribes. The evidence of the fact
still exists, in unmistakable form, in their systems of consanguinity
and affinity, which have outlived the customs and usages in which they
originated. It will be noticed that this scheme of intermarriage is
but a step from promiscuity, because it is tantamount to that with
the addition of a method. Still, as it is made a subject of organic
regulation, it is far removed from general promiscuity. Moreover, it
reveals an existing state of marriage and of the family of which
no adequate conception could have been formed apart from the facts.
It affords the first direct evidence of a state of society which
had previously been deduced, as extremely probable, from systems of
consanguinity and affinity.[47]

Whilst the children remained in the gens of their mother, they passed
into another class, in the same gens, different from that of either
parent. This will be made apparent by the following table:

    _Male._      _Female._                   _Male._   _Female._
    Ippai marries Kapota.  Their children are Murri and Mata.
    Kumbo    ”    Mata.      ”      ”      ”  Kubbi  ”  Kapota.
    Murri    ”    Buta.      ”      ”      ”  Ippai  ”  Ippata.
    Kubbi    ”    Ippata.    ”      ”      ”  Kumbo  ”  Buta.

If these descents are followed out it will be found that, in the female
line, Kapota is the mother of Mata, and Mata in turn is the mother of
Kapota; so Ippata is the mother of Buta, and the latter in turn is
the mother of Ippata. It is the same with the male classes; but since
descent is in the female line, the Kamilaroi tribes derive themselves
from two supposed female ancestors, which laid the foundation for two
original gentes. By tracing these descents still further it will be
found that the blood of each class passes through all the classes.

Although each individual bears one of the class names above given, it
will be understood that each has in addition the single personal name,
which is common among savage as well as barbarous tribes. The more
closely this organization upon sex is scrutinized, the more remarkable
it seems as the work of savages. When once established, and after that
transmitted through a few generations, it would hold society with
such power as to become difficult of displacement. It would require a
similar and higher system, and centuries of time, to accomplish this
result; particularly if the range of the conjugal system would thereby
be abridged.

The gentile organization supervened naturally upon the classes as a
higher organization, by simply enfolding them unchanged. That it
was subsequent in point of time, is shown by the relations of the two
systems, by the inchoate condition of the gentes, by the impaired
condition of the classes through encroachments by the gens, and by
the fact that the class is still the unit of organization. These
conclusions will be made apparent in the sequel.

From the preceding statements the composition of the gentes will be
understood when placed in their relations to the classes. The latter
are in pairs of brothers and sisters derived from each other; and the
gentes themselves, through the classes, are in pairs, as follows:

       _Gentes._          _Male._   _Female._   _Male._   _Female._
    1. Iguana.     All are Murri and  Mata,   or Kubbi and Kapota.
    2. Emu.         ”   ”  Kumbo  ”   Buta,   ”  Ippai  ”  Ippata.

    3. Kangaroo.    ”   ”  Murri  ”   Mata,   ”  Kubbi  ”  Kapota.
    4. Bandicoot.   ”   ”  Kumbo  ”   Buta,   ”  Ippai  ”  Ippata.

    5. Opossum.     ”   ”  Murri  ”   Mata,   ”  Kubbi  ”  Kapota.
    6. Blacksnake.  ”   ”  Kumbo  ”   Buta,   ”  Ippai  ”  Ippata.

The connection of children with a particular gens is proven by the
law of marriage. Thus, Iguana-Mata must marry Kumbo; her children are
Kubbi and Kapota, and necessarily Iguana in gens, because descent is
in the female line. Iguana-Kapota must marry Ippai; her children are
Murri and Mata, and also Iguana in gens, for the same reason. In like
manner Emu-Buta must marry Murri; her children are Ippai and Ippata,
and of the Emu gens. So Emu-Ippata must marry Kubbi; her children are
Kumbo and Buta, and also of the Emu gens. In this manner the gens is
maintained by keeping in its membership the children of all its female
members. The same is true in all respects of each of the remaining
gentes. It will be noticed that each gens is made up, theoretically,
of the descendants of two supposed female ancestors, and contains four
of the eight classes. It seems probable that originally there were
but two male, and two female classes, which were set opposite to each
other in respect to the right of marriage; and that the four afterward
subdivided into eight. The classes as an anterior organization were
evidently arranged within the gentes, and not formed by the subdivision
of the latter.

Moreover, since the Iguana, Kangaroo and Opossum gentes are found
to be counterparts of each other, in the classes they contain, it
follows that they are subdivisions of an original gens. Precisely the
same is true of Emu, Bandicoot and Blacksnake, in both particulars;
thus reducing the six to two original gentes, with the right in each
to marry into the other, but not into itself. It is confirmed by the
fact that the members of the first three gentes could not originally
intermarry; neither could the members of the last three. The reason
which prevented intermarriage in the gens, when the three were one,
would follow the subdivisions because they were of the same descent
although under different gentile names. Exactly the same thing is found
among the Seneca-Iroquois, as will hereafter be shown.

Since marriage is restricted to particular classes, when there were but
two gentes, one-half of all the females of one were, theoretically,
the wives of one-half of all the males of the other. After their
subdivision into six the benefit of marrying out of the gens,
which was the chief advantage of the institution, was arrested, if
not neutralized, by the presence of the classes together with the
restrictions mentioned. It resulted in continuous in-and-in marriages
beyond the immediate degree of brother and sister. If the gens could
have eradicated the classes this evil would, in a great measure, have
been removed.[48]

The organization into classes seems to have been directed to the single
object of breaking up the intermarriage of brothers and sisters, which
affords a probable explanation of the origin of the system. But since
it did not look beyond this special abomination it retained a conjugal
system nearly as objectionable, as well as cast it in a permanent form.

It remains to notice an innovation upon the original constitution
of the classes, and in favor of the gens, which reveals a movement,
still pending, in the direction of the true ideal of the gens. It is
shown in two particulars: firstly, in allowing each triad of gentes to
intermarry with each other, to a limited extent; and secondly, to marry
into classes not before permitted. Thus, Iguana-Murri can now marry
Mata in the Kangaroo gens, his collateral sister, whereas originally he
was restricted to Buta in the opposite three. So Iguana-Kubbi can now
marry Kapota, his collateral sister. Emu-Kumbo can now marry Buta, and
Emu-Ippai can marry Ippata in the Blacksnake gens, contrary to original
limitations. Each class of males in each triad of gentes seems now to
be allowed one additional class of females in the two remaining gentes
of the same triad, from which they were before excluded. The memoranda
sent by Mr. Fison, however, do not show a change to the full extent
here indicated.[49]

This innovation would plainly have been a retrograde movement but
that it tended to break down the classes. The line of progress among
the Kamilaroi, so far as any is observable, was from classes into
gentes, followed by a tendency to make the gens instead of the class
the unit of the social organism. In this movement the overshadowing
system of cohabitation was the resisting element. Social advancement
was impossible without diminishing its extent, which was equally
impossible so long as the classes, with the privileges they conferred,
remained in full vitality. The _jura conjugialia_, which appertained
to these classes, were the dead weight upon the Kamilaroi, without
emancipation from which they would have remained for additional
thousands of years in the same condition, substantially, in which they
were found.

An organization somewhat similar is indicated by the _punalua_ of the
Hawaiians which will be hereafter explained. Wherever the middle or
lower stratum of savagery is uncovered, marriages of entire groups
under usages defining the groups, have been discovered either in
absolute form, or such traces as to leave little doubt that such
marriages were normal throughout this period of man’s history. It is
immaterial whether the group, theoretically, was large or small, the
necessities of their condition would set a practical limit to the size
of the group living together under this custom. If then community of
husbands and wives is found to have been a law of the savage state,
and, therefore, the essential condition of society in savagery, the
inference would be conclusive that our own savage ancestors shared in
this common experience of the human race.

In such usages and customs an explanation of the low condition of
savages is found. If men in savagery had not been left behind, in
isolated portions of the earth, to testify concerning the early
condition of mankind in general, it would have been impossible to
form any definite conception of what it must have been. An important
inference at once arises, namely, that the institutions of mankind have
sprung up in a progressive connected series, each of which represents
the result of unconscious reformatory movements to extricate society
from existing evils. The wear of ages is upon these institutions,
for the proper understanding of which they must be studied in this
light. It cannot be assumed that the Australian savages are now at
the bottom of the scale, for their arts and institutions, humble as
they are, show the contrary; neither is there any ground for assuming
their degradation from a higher condition, because the facts of human
experience afford no sound basis for such an hypothesis. Cases
of physical and mental deterioration in tribes and nations may be
admitted, for reasons which are known, but they never interrupted the
general progress of mankind. All the facts of human knowledge and
experience tend to show that the human race, as a whole, have steadily
progressed from a lower to a higher condition. The arts by which
savages maintain their lives are remarkably persistent. They are never
lost until superseded by others higher in degree. By the practice of
these arts, and by the experience gained through social organizations,
mankind have advanced under a necessary law of development, although
their progress may have been substantially imperceptible for centuries.
It was the same with races as with individuals, although tribes and
nations have perished through the disruption of their ethnic life.

The Australian classes afford the first, and, so far as the writer
is aware, the only case in which we are able to look down into the
incipient stages of the organization into gentes, and even through it
upon an anterior organization so archaic as that upon sex. It seems to
afford a glimpse at society when it verged upon the primitive. Among
other tribes the gens seems to have advanced in proportion to the
curtailment of the conjugal system. Mankind rise in the scale and the
family advances through its successive forms, as these rights sink down
before the efforts of society to improve its internal organization.

The Australians might not have effected the overthrow of the classes
in thousands of years if they had remained undiscovered; while more
favored continental tribes had long before perfected the gens, then
advanced it through its successive phases, and at last laid it aside
after entering upon civilization. Facts illustrating the rise of
successive social organizations, such as that upon sex, and that upon
kin are of the highest ethnological value. A knowledge of what they
indicate is eminently desirable, if the early history of mankind is to
be measurably recovered.

Among the Polynesian tribes the gens was unknown; but traces of a
system analogous to the Australian classes appear in the Hawaiian
custom of punalua. Original ideas, absolutely independent of previous
knowledge and experience, are necessarily few in number. Were it
possible to reduce the sum of human ideas to underived originals, the
small numerical result would be startling. Development is the method of
human progress.

In the light of these facts some of the excrescences of modern
civilization, such as Mormonism, are seen to be relics of the old
savagism not yet eradicated from the human brain. We have the same
brain, perpetuated by reproduction, which worked in the skulls of
barbarians and savages in by-gone ages; and it has come down to us
ladened and saturated with the thoughts, aspirations and passions,
with which it was busied through the intermediate periods. It is the
same brain grown older and larger with the experience of the ages.
These outcrops of barbarism are so many revelations of its ancient
proclivities. They are explainable as a species of mental atavism.

Out of a few germs of thought, conceived in the early ages, have been
evolved all the principal institutions of mankind. Beginning their
growth in the period of savagery, fermenting through the period of
barbarism, they have continued their advancement through the period of
civilization. The evolution of these germs of thought has been guided
by a natural logic which formed an essential attribute of the brain
itself. So unerringly has this principle performed its functions in
all conditions of experience, and in all periods of time, that its
results are uniform, coherent and traceable in their courses. These
results alone will in time yield convincing proofs of the unity of
origin of mankind. The mental history of the human race, which is
revealed in institutions, inventions and discoveries, is presumptively
the history of a single species, perpetuated through individuals, and
developed through experience. Among the original germs of thought,
which have exercised the most powerful influence upon the human mind,
and upon human destiny, are these which relate to government, to the
family, to language, to religion, and to property. They had a definite
beginning far back in savagery, and a logical progress, but can have no
final consummation, because they are still progressing, and must ever
continue to progress.



CHAPTER II.

THE IROQUOIS GENS.

    THE GENTILE ORGANIZATION.—ITS WIDE PREVALENCE.—DEFINITION OF
    A GENS.—DESCENT IN THE FEMALE LINE THE ARCHAIC RULE.—RIGHTS,
    PRIVILEGES AND OBLIGATIONS OF MEMBERS OF A GENS.—RIGHT OF
    ELECTING AND DEPOSING ITS SACHEM AND CHIEFS.—OBLIGATION NOT
    TO MARRY IN THE GENS.—MUTUAL RIGHTS OF INHERITANCE OF THE
    PROPERTY OF DECEASED MEMBERS.—RECIPROCAL OBLIGATIONS OF
    HELP, DEFENSE AND REDRESS OF INJURIES.—RIGHT OF NAMING ITS
    MEMBERS.—RIGHT OF ADOPTING STRANGERS INTO THE GENS.—COMMON
    RELIGIOUS RITES, QUERY.—A COMMON BURIAL PLACE.—COUNCIL OF THE
    GENS.—GENTES NAMED AFTER ANIMALS.—NUMBER OF PERSONS IN A GENS.


The experience of mankind, as elsewhere remarked, has developed but
two plans of government, using the word _plan_ in its scientific
sense. Both were definite and systematic organizations of society.
The first and most ancient was a _social organization_, founded upon
gentes, phratries and tribes. The second and latest in time was a
_political organization_, founded upon territory and upon property.
Under the first a gentile society was created, in which the government
dealt with persons through their relations to a gens and tribe. These
relations were purely personal. Under the second a political society
was instituted, in which the government dealt with persons through
their relations to territory, _e. g._—the township, the county, and
the state. These relations were purely territorial. The two plans were
fundamentally different. One belongs to ancient society, and the other
to modern.

The gentile organization opens to us one of the oldest and most widely
prevalent institutions of mankind. It furnished the nearly universal
plan of government of ancient society, Asiatic, European, African,
American and Australian. It was the instrumentality by means of which
society was organized and held together. Commencing in savagery, and
continuing through the three sub-periods of barbarism, it remained
until the establishment of political society, which did not occur until
after civilization had commenced. The Grecian gens, phratry and tribe,
the Roman gens, _curia_ and tribe find their analogues in the gens,
phratry and tribe of the American aborigines. In like manner, the Irish
_sept_, the Scottish _clan_, the _phrara_ of the Albanians, and the
Sanskrit _ganas_, without extending the comparison further, are the
same as the American Indian gens, which has usually been called a clan.
As far as our knowledge extends, this organization runs through the
entire ancient world upon all the continents, and it was brought down
to the historical period by such tribes as attained to civilization.
Nor is this all. Gentile society wherever found is the same in
structural organization and in principles of action; but changing from
lower to higher forms with the progressive advancement of the people.
These changes give the history of development of the same original
conceptions.

_Gens_, γένος, and _ganas_ in Latin, Greek and Sanskrit have alike
the primary signification of _kin_. They contain the same element as
_gigno_, γίγνομαι, and _ganamai_, in the same languages, signifying
_to beget_; thus implying in each an immediate common descent of
the members of a gens. A gens, therefore, is a body of consanguinei
descended from the same common ancestor, distinguished by a gentile
name, and bound together by affinities of blood. It includes a moiety
only of such descendants. Where descent is in the female line, as
it was universally in the archaic period, the gens is composed of a
supposed female ancestor and her children, together with the children
of her female descendants, through females, in perpetuity; and where
descent is in the male line—into which it was changed after the
appearance of property in masses—of a supposed male ancestor and his
children, together with the children of his male descendants, through
males, in perpetuity. The family name among ourselves is a survival
of the gentile name, with descent in the male line, and passing in
the same manner. The modern family, as expressed by its name, is an
unorganized gens; with the bond of kin broken, and its members as
widely dispersed as the family name is found.

Among the nations named, the gens indicated a social organization of a
remarkable character, which had prevailed from an antiquity so remote
that its origin was lost in the obscurity of far distant ages. It was
also the unit of organization of a social and governmental system,
the fundamental basis of ancient society. This organization was not
confined to the Latin, Grecian and Sanskrit speaking tribes, with whom
it became such a conspicuous institution. It has been found in other
branches of the Aryan family of nations, in the Semitic, Uralian and
Turanian families, among the tribes of Africa and Australia, and of the
American aborigines.

An exposition of the elementary constitution of the gens, with its
functions, rights, and privileges, requires our first attention; after
which it will be traced, as widely as possible, among the tribes and
nations of mankind in order to prove, by comparisons, its fundamental
unity. It will then be seen that it must be regarded as one of the
primary institutions of mankind.

The gens has passed through successive stages of development in its
transition from its archaic to its final form with the progress of
mankind. These changes were limited, in the main, to two: firstly,
changing descent from the female line, which was the archaic rule,
as among the Iroquois, to the male line, which was the final rule,
as among the Grecian and Roman gentes; and, secondly, changing the
inheritance of the property of a deceased member of the gens from his
gentiles, who took it in the archaic period, first to his agnatic
kindred, and finally to his children. These changes, slight as they
may seem, indicate very great changes of condition as well as a large
degree of progressive development.

The gentile organization, originating in the period of savagery,
enduring through the three sub-periods of barbarism, finally gave way,
among the more advanced tribes, when they attained civilization, the
requirements of which it was unable to meet. Among the Greeks and
Romans, political society supervened upon gentile society, but not
until civilization had commenced. The township (and its equivalent, the
city ward), with its fixed property, and the inhabitants it contained,
organized as a body politic, became the unit and the basis of a new
and radically different system of government. After political society
was instituted, this ancient and time-honored organization, with
the phratry and tribe developed from it, gradually yielded up their
existence. It will be my object, in the course of this volume, to trace
the progress of this organization from its rise in savagery to its
final overthrow in civilization; for it was under gentile institutions
that barbarism was won by some of the tribes of mankind while in
savagery, and that civilization was won by the descendants of some of
the same tribes while in barbarism. Gentile institutions carried a
portion of mankind from savagery to civilization.

This organization may be successfully studied both in its living and in
its historical forms in a large number of tribes and races. In such an
investigation it is preferable to commence with the gens in its archaic
form, and then to follow it through its successive modifications among
advanced nations, in order to discover both the changes and the causes
which produced them. I shall commence, therefore, with the gens as
it now exists among the American aborigines, where it is found in its
archaic form, and among whom its theoretical constitution and practical
workings can be investigated more successfully than in the historical
gentes of the Greeks and Romans. In fact to understand fully the gentes
of the latter nations a knowledge of the functions, and of the rights,
privileges and obligations of the members of the American Indian gens
is imperatively necessary.

In American Ethnography _tribe_ and _clan_ have been used in the place
of gens as an equivalent term, from not perceiving its universality. In
previous works, and following my predecessors, I have so used them.[50]
A comparison of the Indian clan with the gens of the Greeks and Romans
reveals at once their identity in structure and functions. It also
extends to the phratry and tribe. If the identity of these several
organizations can be shown, of which there can be no doubt, there is a
manifest propriety in returning to the Latin and Grecian terminologies
which are full and precise as well as historical. I have made herein
the substitutions required, and propose to show the parallelism of
these several organizations.

The plan of government of the American aborigines commenced with the
gens and ended with the confederacy, the latter being the highest point
to which their governmental institutions attained. It gave for the
organic series: first, the gens, a body of consanguinei having a common
gentile name; second, the phratry, an assemblage of related gentes
united in a higher association for certain common objects; third, the
tribe, an assemblage of gentes, usually organized in phratries, all
the members of which spoke the same dialect; and fourth, a confederacy
of tribes, the members of which respectively spoke dialects of the
same stock language. It resulted in a gentile society (_societas_),
as distinguished from a political society or state (_civitas_). The
difference between the two is wide and fundamental. There was neither a
political society, nor a citizen, nor a state, nor any civilization in
America when it was discovered. One entire ethnical period intervened
between the highest American Indian tribes and the beginning of
civilization, as that term is properly understood.

In like manner the plan of government of the Grecian tribes, anterior
to civilization, involved the same organic series, with the exception
of the last member: first, the gens, a body of consanguinei bearing
a common gentile name; second, the phratry, an assemblage of gentes,
united for social and religious objects; third, the tribe, an
assemblage of gentes of the same lineage organized in phratries; and
fourth, a nation, an assemblage of tribes who had coalesced in a
gentile society upon one common territory, as the four tribes of the
Athenians in Attica, and the three Dorian tribes at Sparta. Coalescence
was a higher process than confederating. In the latter case the tribes
occupied independent territories.

The Roman plan and series were the same: First, the gens, a body of
consanguinei bearing a common gentile name; second, the _curia_, an
assemblage of gentes united in a higher association for the performance
of religious and governmental functions; third, the tribe, an
assemblage of gentes organized in _curiae_; and fourth, a nation, an
assemblage of tribes who had coalesced in a gentile society. The early
Romans styled themselves, with entire propriety, the _Populus Romanus_.

Wherever gentile institutions prevailed, and prior to the establishment
of political society, we find peoples or nations in gentile societies,
and nothing beyond. The _state_ did not exist. Their governments
were essentially democratical, because the principles on which the
gens, phratry and tribe were organized were democratical. This last
proposition, though contrary to received opinions, is historically
important. The truth of it can be tested as the gens, phratry and tribe
of the American aborigines, and the same organizations among the
Greeks and Romans are successively considered. As the gens, the unit
of organization, was essentially democratical, so necessarily was the
phratry composed of gentes, the tribe composed of phratries, and the
gentile society formed by the confederating, or coalescing of tribes.

The gens, though a very ancient social organization founded upon kin,
does not include all the descendants of a common ancestor. It was
for the reason that when the gens came in, marriage between single
pairs was unknown, and descent through males could not be traced with
certainty. Kindred were linked together chiefly through the bond
of their maternity. In the ancient gens descent was limited to the
female line. It embraced all such persons as traced their descent
from a supposed common female ancestor, through females, the evidence
of the fact being the possession of a common gentile name. It would
include this ancestor and her children, the children of her daughters,
and the children of her female descendants, through females, in
perpetuity; whilst the children of her sons, and the children of her
male descendants, through males, would belong to other gentes; namely,
those of their respective mothers. Such was the gens in its archaic
form, when the paternity of children was not certainly ascertainable,
and when their maternity afforded the only certain criterion of
descents.

This state of descents, which can be traced back to the Middle Status
of savagery, as among the Australians, remained among the American
aborigines through the Upper Status of savagery, and into and through
the Lower Status of barbarism, with occasional exceptions. In the
Middle Status of barbarism, the Indian tribes began to change descent
from the female line to the male, as the syndyasmian family of the
period began to assume monogamian characteristics. In the Upper Status
of barbarism, descent had become changed to the male line among the
Grecian tribes, with the exception of the Lycians, and among the
Italian tribes, with the exception of the Etruscans. The influence of
property and its inheritance in producing the monogamian family which
assured the paternity of children, and in causing a change of descent
from the female line to the male, will be considered elsewhere. Between
the two extremes, represented by the two rules of descent, three entire
ethnical periods intervene, covering many thousands of years.

With descent in the male line, the gens embraced all persons who traced
their descent from a supposed common male ancestor, through males only,
the evidence of the fact being, as in the other case, the possession of
a common gentile name. It would include this ancestor and his children,
the children of his sons, and the children of his male descendants,
through males, in perpetuity; whilst the children of his daughters, and
the children of his female descendants, through females, would belong
to other gentes; namely, those of their respective fathers. Those
retained in the gens in one case were those excluded in the other, and
_vice versâ_. Such was the gens in its final form, after the paternity
of children became ascertainable through the rise of monogamy. The
transition of a gens from one form into the other was perfectly simple,
without involving its overthrow. All that was needed was an adequate
motive, as will elsewhere be shown. The same gens, with descent changed
to the male line, remained the unit of the social system. It could not
have reached the second form without previously existing in the first.

As intermarriage in the gens was prohibited, it withdrew its members
from the evils of consanguine marriages, and thus tended to increase
the vigor of the stock. The gens came into being upon three principal
conceptions, namely the bond of kin, a pure lineage through descent in
the female line, and non-intermarriage in the gens. When the idea of a
gens was developed, it would naturally have taken the form of gentes in
pairs, because the children of the males were excluded, and because it
was equally necessary to organize both classes of descendants. With two
gentes started into being simultaneously the whole result would have
been attained, since the males and females of one gens would marry the
females and males of the other, and the children, following the gentes
of their respective mothers, would be divided between them. Resting on
the bond of kin as its cohesive principle the gens afforded to each
individual member that personal protection which no other existing
power could give.

After considering the rights, privileges and obligations of its members
it will be necessary to follow the gens in its organic relations to
a phratry, tribe and confederacy, in order to find the uses to which
it was applied, the privileges which it conferred, and the principles
which it fostered. The gentes of the Iroquois will be taken as the
standard exemplification of this institution in the Ganowánian family.
They had carried their scheme of government from the gens to the
confederacy, making it complete in each of its parts, and an excellent
illustration of the capabilities of the gentile organization in its
archaic form. When discovered the Iroquois were in the Lower Status
of barbarism, and well advanced in the arts of life pertaining to
this condition. They manufactured nets, twine and rope from filaments
of bark; wove belts and burden straps, with warp and woof, from the
same materials; they manufactured earthen vessels and pipes from clay
mixed with siliceous materials and hardened by fire, some of which
were ornamented with rude medallions; they cultivated maize, beans,
squashes, and tobacco, in garden beds, and made unleavened bread
from pounded maize which they boiled in earthern vessels;[51] they
tanned skins into leather with which they manufactured kilts, leggings
and moccasins; they used the bow and arrow and war-club as their
principal weapons; used flint stone and bone implements, wore skin
garments, and were expert hunters and fishermen. They constructed
long joint-tenement houses large enough to accommodate five, ten, and
twenty families, and each household practiced communism in living; but
they were unacquainted with the use of stone or adobe-brick in house
architecture, and with the use of the native metals. In mental capacity
and in general advancement they were the representative branch of the
Indian family north of New Mexico. General F. A. Walker has sketched
their military career in two paragraphs: “The career of the Iroquois
was simply terrific. They were the scourge of God upon the aborigines
of the continent.”[52]

From lapse of time the Iroquois tribes have come to differ slightly in
the number, and in the names of their respective gentes. The largest
number being eight, as follows:

_Senecas._—1. Wolf. 2. Bear. 3. Turtle. 4. Beaver. 5. Deer. 6. Snipe.
7. Heron. 8. Hawk.

_Cayugas._—1. Wolf. 2. Bear. 3. Turtle. 4. Beaver. 5. Deer. 6. Snipe.
7. Eel. 8. Hawk.

_Onondagas._—1. Wolf. 2. Bear. 3. Turtle. 4. Beaver. 5. Deer. 6. Snipe.
7. Eel. 8. Ball.

_Oneidas._—1. Wolf. 2. Bear. 3. Turtle.

_Mohawks._—1. Wolf. 2. Bear. 3. Turtle.

_Tuscaroras._—1. Gray Wolf. 2. Bear. 3. Great Turtle. 4. Beaver. 5.
Yellow Wolf. 6. Snipe. 7. Eel. 8. Little Turtle.

These changes show that certain gentes in some of the tribes have
become extinct through the vicissitudes of time; and that others have
been formed by the segmentation of over-full gentes.

With a knowledge of the rights, privileges and obligations of the
members of a gens, its capabilities as the unit of a social and
governmental system will be more fully understood, as well as the
manner in which it entered into the higher organizations of the
phratry, tribe, and confederacy.

The gens is individualized by the following rights, privileges, and
obligations conferred and imposed upon its members, and which made up
the _jus gentilicium_.

     I. _The right of electing its sachem and chiefs._
    II. _The right of deposing its sachem and chiefs._
   III. _The obligation not to marry in the gens._
    IV. _Mutual rights of inheritance of the property of deceased
           members._
     V. _Reciprocal obligations of help, defense, and redress
           of injuries._
    VI. _The right of bestowing names upon its members._
   VII. _The right of adopting strangers into the gens._
  VIII. _Common religious rites, query._
    IX. _A common burial place._
     X. _A council of the gens._

These functions and attributes gave vitality as well as individuality
to the organization, and protected the personal rights of its members.

I. _The right of electing its sachem and chiefs._

Nearly all the American Indian tribes had two grades of chiefs, who may
be distinguished as sachems and common chiefs. Of these two primary
grades all other grades were varieties. They were elected in each
gens from among its members. A son could not be chosen to succeed his
father, where descent was in the female line, because he belonged to
a different gens, and no gens would have a chief or sachem from any
gens but its own. The office of sachem was hereditary in the gens, in
the sense that it was filled as often as a vacancy occurred; while the
office of chief was non-hereditary, because it was bestowed in reward
of personal merit, and died with the individual. Moreover, the duties
of a sachem were confined to the affairs of peace. He could not go out
to war as a sachem. On the other hand, the chiefs who were raised to
office for personal bravery, for wisdom in affairs, or for eloquence
in council, were usually the superior class in ability, though not in
authority over the gens. The relation of the sachem was primarily to
the gens, of which he was the official head; while that of the chief
was primarily to the tribe, of the council of which he, as well as the
sachem, were members.

The office of sachem had a natural foundation in the gens, as an
organized body of consanguinei which, as such, needed a representative
head. As an office, however, it is older than the gentile organization,
since it is found among tribes not thus organized, but among whom it
had a similar basis in the punaluan group, and even in the anterior
horde. In the gens the constituency of the sachem was clearly defined,
the basis of the relation was permanent, and its duties paternal. While
the office was hereditary in the gens it was elective among its male
members. When the Indian system of consanguinity is considered, it will
be found that all the male members of a gens were either brothers to
each other, own or collateral, uncles or nephews, own or collateral,
or collateral grandfathers and grandsons.[53] This will explain the
succession of the office of sachem which passed from brother to
brother, or from uncle to nephew, and very rarely from grandfather to
grandson. The choice, which was by free suffrage of both males and
females of adult age, usually fell upon a brother of the deceased
sachem, or upon one of the sons of a sister; an own brother, or the son
of an own sister being most likely to be preferred. As between several
brothers, own and collateral, on the one hand, and the sons of several
sisters, own and collateral, on the other, there was no priority of
right, for the reason that all the male members of the gens were
equally eligible. To make a choice between them was the function of the
elective principle.

Upon the death of a sachem, for example among the Seneca-Iroquois, a
council of his gentiles[54] was convened to name his successor. Two
candidates, according to their usages, must be voted upon, both of
them members of the gens. Each person of adult age was called upon to
express his or her preference, and the one who received the largest
number of affirmative declarations was nominated. It still required
the assent of the seven remaining gentes before the nomination was
complete. If these gentes, who met for the purpose by phratries,
refused to confirm the nomination it was thereby set aside, and the
gens proceeded to make another choice. When the person nominated by his
gens was accepted by the remaining gentes the election was complete;
but it was still necessary that the new sachem should be _raised up_,
to use their expression, or invested with his office by a council of
the confederacy, before he could enter upon its duties. It was their
method of conferring the _imperium_. In this manner the rights and
interests of the several gentes were consulted and preserved; for
the sachem of a gens was _ex officio_ a member of the council of the
tribe, and of the higher council of the confederacy. The same method
of election and of confirmation existed with respect to the office
of chief, and for the same reasons. But a general council was never
convened to raise up chiefs below the grade of a sachem. They awaited
the time when sachems were invested.

The principle of democracy, which was born of the gentes, manifested
itself in the retention by the gentiles of the right to elect their
sachem and chiefs, in the safeguards thrown around the office to
prevent usurpation, and in the check upon the election held by the
remaining gentes.

The chiefs in each gens were usually proportioned to the number of
its members. Among the Seneca-Iroquois there is one chief for about
every fifty persons. They now number in New York some three thousand,
and have eight sachems and about sixty chiefs. There are reasons for
supposing that the proportionate number is now greater than in former
times. With respect to the number of gentes in a tribe, the more
numerous the people the greater, usually, the number of gentes. The
number varied in the different tribes, from three among the Delawares
and Munsees to upwards of twenty among the Ojibwas and Creeks; six,
eight, and ten being common numbers.

II. _The right of deposing its sachem and chiefs._

This right, which was not less important than that to elect, was
reserved by the members of the gens. Although the office was nominally
for life, the tenure was practically during good behavior, in
consequence of the power to depose. The installation of a sachem was
symbolized as “putting on the horns,” and his deposition as “taking
off the horns.” Among widely separated tribes of mankind horns have
been made the emblem of office and of authority, suggested probably,
as Tylor intimates, by the commanding appearance of the males among
ruminant animals bearing horns. Unworthy behavior, followed by a loss
of confidence, furnished a sufficient ground for deposition. When a
sachem or chief had been deposed in due form by a council of his gens,
he ceased thereafter to be recognized as such, and became thenceforth
a private person. The council of the tribe also had power to depose
both sachems and chiefs, without waiting for the action of the gens,
and even against its wishes. Through the existence and occasional
exercise of this power the supremacy of the gentiles over their sachem
and chiefs was asserted and preserved. It also reveals the democratic
constitution of the gens.

III. _The obligation not to marry in the gens._

Although a negative proposition it was fundamental. It was evidently
a primary object of the organization to isolate a moiety of the
descendants of a supposed founder, and prevent their intermarriage
for reasons of kin. When the gens came into existence brothers were
intermarried to each other’s wives in a group, and sisters to each
other’s husbands in a group, to which the gens interposed no obstacle.
But it sought to exclude brothers and sisters from the marriage
relation which was effected, as there are good reasons for stating,
by the prohibition in question. Had the gens attempted to uproot the
entire conjugal system of the period by its direct action, there is
not the slightest probability that it would have worked its way into
general establishment. The gens, originating probably in the ingenuity
of a small band of savages, must soon have proved its utility in the
production of superior men. Its nearly universal prevalence in the
ancient world is the highest evidence of the advantages it conferred,
and of its adaptability to human wants in savagery and in barbarism.
The Iroquois still adhere inflexibly to the rule which forbids persons
to marry in their own gens.

IV. _Mutual rights of inheritance of the property of deceased members._

In the Status of savagery, and in the Lower Status of barbarism, the
amount of property was small. It consisted in the former condition of
personal effects, to which, in the latter, were added possessory rights
in joint-tenement houses and in gardens. The most valuable personal
articles were buried with the body of the deceased owner. Nevertheless,
the question of inheritance was certain to arise, to increase in
importance with the increase of property in variety and amount, and
to result in some settled rule of inheritance. Accordingly we find
the principle established low down in barbarism, and even back of
that in savagery, that the property should remain in the gens, and be
distributed among the gentiles of the deceased owner. It was customary
law in the Grecian and Latin gentes in the Upper Status of barbarism,
and remained as written law far into civilization, that the property
of a deceased person should remain in the gens. But after the time of
Solon among the Athenians it was limited to cases of intestacy.

The question, who should take the property, has given rise to three
great and successive rules of inheritance. First, that it should be
distributed among the gentiles of the deceased owner. This was the
rule in the Lower Status of barbarism, and so far as is known in the
Status of savagery. Second, that the property should be distributed
among the agnatic kindred of the deceased owner, to the exclusion of
the remaining gentiles. The germ of this rule makes its appearance
in the Lower Status of barbarism, and it probably became completely
established in the Middle Status. Third, that the property should be
inherited by the children of the deceased owner, to the exclusion of
the remaining agnates. This became the rule in the Upper Status of
barbarism.

Theoretically, the Iroquois were under the first rule; but,
practically, the effects of a deceased person were appropriated by
his nearest relations within the gens. In the case of a male his own
brothers and sisters and maternal uncles divided his effects among
themselves. This practical limitation of the inheritance to the nearest
gentile kin discloses the germ of agnatic inheritance. In the case of
a female her property was inherited by her children and her sisters,
to the exclusion of her brothers. In every case the property remained
in the gens. The children of the deceased males took nothing from
their father because they belonged to a different gens. It was for the
same reason that the husband took nothing from the wife, or the wife
from her husband. These mutual rights of inheritance strengthened the
autonomy of the gens.

V. _Reciprocal obligations of help, defense, and redress of injuries._

In civilized society the state assumes the protection of persons and
of property. Accustomed to look to this source for the maintenance
of personal rights, there has been a corresponding abatement of the
strength of the bond of kin. But under gentile society the individual
depended for security upon his gens. It took the place afterwards
held by the state, and possessed the requisite numbers to render its
guardianship effective. Within its membership the bond of kin was a
powerful element for mutual support. To wrong a person was to wrong his
gens; and to support a person was to stand behind him with the entire
array of his gentile kindred.

In their trials and difficulties the members of the gens assisted
each other. Two or three illustrations may be given from the Indian
tribes at large. Speaking of the Mayas of Yucatan, Herrera remarks,
that “when any satisfaction was to be made for damages, if he who
was adjudged to pay was like to be reduced to poverty, the kindred
contributed.”[55] By the term kindred, as here used, we are justified
in understanding the gens. And of the Florida Indians: “When a brother
or son dies the people of the house will rather starve than seek
anything to eat during three months, but the kindred and relations
send it all in.”[56] Persons who removed from one village to another
could not transfer their possessory right to cultivated lands or to a
section of a joint-tenement house to a stranger; but must leave them
to his gentile kindred. Herrera refers to this usage among the Indian
tribes of Nicaragua; “He that removed from one town to another could
not sell what he had, but must leave it to his nearest relation.”[57]
So much of their property was held in joint ownership that their plan
of life would not admit of its alienation to a person of another
gens. Practically, the right to such property was possessory, and
when abandoned it reverted to the gens. Garcilasso de la Vega remarks
of the tribes of the Peruvian Andes, that “when the commonalty, or
ordinary sort, married, the communities of the people were obliged to
build and provide them houses.”[58] For _communities_, as here used, we
are justified in understanding the gens. Herrera speaking of the same
tribes observes that “this variety of tongues proceed from the nations
being divided into races, tribes, or clans.”[59] Here the gentiles were
required to assist newly married pairs in the construction of their
houses.

The ancient practice of blood revenge, which has prevailed so widely
in the tribes of mankind, had its birthplace in the gens. It rested
with this body to avenge the murder of one of its members. Tribunals
for the trial of criminals and laws prescribing their punishment, came
late into existence in gentile society; but they made their appearance
before the institution of political society. On the other hand, the
crime of murder is as old as human society, and its punishment by the
revenge of kinsmen is as old as the crime itself. Among the Iroquois
and other Indian tribes generally, the obligation to avenge the murder
of a kinsman was universally recognized.[60]

It was, however, the duty of the gens of the slayer, and of the slain,
to attempt an adjustment of the crime before proceeding to extremities.
A council of the members of each gens was held separately, and
propositions were made in behalf of the murderer for a condonation
of the act, usually in the nature of expressions of regret and of
presents of considerable value. If there were justifying or extenuating
circumstances it generally resulted in a composition; but if the
gentile kindred of the slain person were implacable, one or more
avengers were appointed by his gens from among its members, whose
duty it was to pursue the criminal until discovered, and then to slay
him wherever he might be found. If they accomplished the deed it was
no ground of complaint by any member of the gens of the victim. Life
having answered for life the demands of justice were appeased.

The same sentiment of fraternity manifested itself in other ways in
relieving a fellow gentilis in distress, and in protecting him from
injuries.

VI. _The right of bestowing names upon its members._

Among savage and barbarous tribes there is no name for the family.
The personal names of individuals of the same family do not indicate
any family connection between them. The family name is no older than
civilization.[61] Indian personal names, however, usually indicate the
gens of the individual to persons of other gentes in the same tribe. As
a rule each gens had names for persons that were its special property,
and, as such, could not be used by other gentes of the same tribe. A
gentile name conferred of itself gentile rights. These names either
proclaimed by their signification the gens to which they belonged, or
were known as such by common reputation.[62]

After the birth of a child a name was selected by its mother from
those not in use belonging to the gens, with the concurrence of her
nearest relatives, which was then bestowed upon the infant. But the
child was not fully christened until its birth and name, together with
the name and gens of its mother and the name of its father, had been
announced at the next ensuing council of the tribe. Upon the death of a
person his name could not be used again in the life-time of his oldest
surviving son without the consent of the latter.[63]

Two classes of names were in use, one adapted to childhood, and the
other to adult life, which were exchanged at the proper period in the
same formal manner; one being taken away, to use their expression, and
the other bestowed in its place. _O-wi′-go, a canoe floating down the
stream_, and _Ah-wou′-ne-ont, hanging flower_, are names for girls
among the Seneca-Iroquois; and _Gä-ne-o-di′-yo, handsome lake_, and
_Do-ne-ho-gä′-weh, door-keeper_, are names of adult males. At the age of
sixteen or eighteen, the first name was taken away, usually by a chief
of the gens, and one of the second class bestowed in its place. At the
next council of the tribe the change of names was publicly announced,
after which the person, if a male, assumed the duties of manhood. In
some Indian tribes the youth was required to go out upon the war-path
and earn his second name by some act of personal bravery. After a
severe illness it was not uncommon for the person, from superstitious
considerations, to solicit and obtain a second change of name. It was
sometimes done again in extreme old age. When a person was elected a
sachem or a chief his name was taken away, and a new one conferred at
the time of his installation. The individual had no control over the
question of a change. It is the prerogative of the female relatives
and of the chiefs; but an adult person might change his name provided
he could induce a chief to announce it in council. A person having the
control of a particular name, as the eldest son of that of his deceased
father, might lend it to a friend in another gens; but after the death
of the person thus bearing it the name reverted to the gens to which it
belonged.

Among the Shawnees and Delawares the mother has now the right to name
her child into any gens she pleases; and the name given transfers
the child to the gens to which the name belongs. But this is a wide
departure from archaic usages, and exceptional in practice. It tends to
corrupt and confound the gentile lineage. The names now in use among
the Iroquois and among other Indian tribes are, in the main, ancient
names handed down in the gentes from time immemorial.

The precautions taken with respect to the use of names belonging to
the gens sufficiently prove the importance attached to them, and the
gentile rights they confer.

Although this question of personal names branches out in many
directions it is foreign to my purpose to do more than illustrate such
general usages as reveal the relations of the members of a gens. In
familiar intercourse and in formal salutation the American Indians
address each other by the term of relationship the person spoken to
sustains to the speaker. When related they salute by kin; when not
related “my friend” is substituted. It would be esteemed an act of
rudeness to address an Indian by his personal name, or to inquire his
name directly from himself.

Our Saxon ancestors had single personal names down to the Norman
conquest, with none to designate the family. This indicates the late
appearance of the monogamian family among them; and it raises a
presumption of the existence in an earlier period of a Saxon gens.

VII. _The right of adopting strangers into the gens._

Another distinctive right of the gens was that of admitting new members
by adoption. Captives taken in war were either put to death, or adopted
into some gens. Women and children taken prisoners usually experienced
clemency in this form. Adoption not only conferred gentile rights,
but also the nationality of the tribe. The person adopting a captive
placed him or her in the relation of a brother or sister; if a mother
adopted, in that of a son or daughter; and ever afterwards treated the
person in all respects as though born in that relation. Slavery, which
in the Upper Status of barbarism became the fate of the captive, was
unknown among tribes in the Lower Status in the aboriginal period. The
gauntlet also had some connection with adoption, since the person who
succeeded, through hardihood or favoritism, in running through the
lines in safety was entitled to this reward. Captives when adopted
were often assigned in the family the places of deceased persons
slain in battle, in order to fill up the broken ranks of relatives. A
declining gens might replenish its numbers, through adoption, although
such instances are rare. At one time the Hawk gens of the Senecas
were reduced to a small number of persons, and its extinction became
imminent. To save the gens a number of persons from the Wolf gens by
mutual consent were transferred in a body by adoption to that of the
Hawk. The right to adopt seems to be left to the discretion of each
gens.

Among the Iroquois the ceremony of adoption was performed at a public
council of the tribe, which turned it practically into a religious
rite.[64]

VIII. _Religious rites in the gens. Query._

Among the Grecian and Latin tribes these rites held a conspicuous
position. The highest polytheistic form of religion which had then
appeared seems to have sprung from the gentes in which religious rites
were constantly maintained. Some of them, from the sanctity they were
supposed to possess, were nationalized. In some cities the office
of high priest of certain divinities was hereditary in a particular
gens.[65] The gens became the natural centre of religious growth and
the birthplace of religious ceremonies.

But the Indian tribes, although they had a polytheistic system, not
much unlike that from which the Grecian and Roman must have sprung,
had not attained that religious development which was so strongly
impressed upon the gentes of the latter tribes. It can scarcely be said
any Indian gens had special religious rites; and yet their religious
worship had a more or less direct connection with the gentes. It was
here that religious ideas would naturally germinate and that forms of
worship would be instituted. But they would expand from the gens over
the tribe, rather than remain special to the gens. Accordingly we find
among the Iroquois six annual religious festivals, (Maple, Planting,
Berry, Green-Corn, Harvest, and New Years Festivals)[66] which were
common to all the gentes united in a tribe, and which were observed at
stated seasons of the year.

Each gens furnished a number of “Keepers of the Faith,” both male
and female, who together were charged with the celebration of these
festivals.[67] The number advanced to this office by each was regarded
as evidence of the fidelity of the gens to religion. They designated
the days for holding the festivals, made the necessary arrangements
for their celebration, and conducted the ceremonies in conjunction
with the sachems and chiefs of the tribe, who were, _ex officio_,
“Keepers of the Faith.” With no official head, and none of the marks
of a priesthood, their functions were equal. The female “Keepers of
the Faith” were more especially charged with the preparation of the
feast, which was provided at all councils at the close of each day for
all persons in attendance. It was a dinner in common. The religious
rites appertaining to these festivals, which have been described in a
previous work,[68] need not be considered further than to remark, that
their worship was one of thanksgiving, with invocations to the Great
Spirit, and to the Lesser Spirits to continue to them the blessings of
life.

With the progress of mankind out of the Lower into the Middle, and
more especially out of the latter into the Upper Status of barbarism,
the gens became more the centre of religious influence and the source
of religious development. We have only the grosser part of the Aztec
religious system; but in addition to national gods, there seem to have
been other gods, belonging to smaller divisions of the people than the
phratries. The existence of an Aztec ritual and priesthood would lead
us to expect among them a closer connection of religious rites with the
gentes than is found among the Iroquois; but their religious beliefs
and observances are under the same cloud of obscurity as their social
organization.

IX. _A common burial place._

An ancient but not exclusive mode of burial was by scaffolding the body
until the flesh had wasted, after which the bones were collected and
preserved in bark barrels in a house constructed for their reception.
Those belonging to the same gens were usually placed in the same house.
The Rev. Dr. Cyrus Byington found these practices among the Choctas
in 1827; and Adair mentions usages among the Cherokees substantially
the same. “I saw three of them,” he remarks, “in one of their towns
pretty near each other; * * * Each house contained the bones of one
tribe separately, with the hieroglyphical figures of each family [gens]
on each of the odd-shaped arks. They reckoned it irreligious to mix
the bones of a relative with those of a stranger, as bone of bone and
flesh of flesh should always be joined together.”[69] The Iroquois
in ancient times used scaffolds and preserved the bones of deceased
relatives in bark barrels, often keeping them in the house they
occupied. They also buried in the ground. In the latter case those of
the same gens were not always buried locally together unless they had
a common cemetery for the village. The late Rev. Ashur Wright, so long
a missionary among the Senecas, and a noble specimen of the American
missionary, wrote to the author as follows; “I find no trace of the
influence of clanship in the burial places of the dead. I believe that
they buried promiscuously. However, they say that formerly the members
of the different clans more frequently resided together than they do
at the present time. As one family they were more under the influence
of family feeling, and had less of individual interest. Hence, it
might occasionally happen that a large proportion of the dead in some
particular burying place might be of the same clan.” Mr. Wright is
undoubtedly correct that in a particular cemetery members of all the
gentes established in a village would be buried; but they might keep
those of the same gens locally together. An illustration in point is
now found at the Tuscarora reservation near Lewiston, where the tribe
has one common cemetery, and where individuals of the same gens are
buried in a row by themselves. One row is composed of the graves of
the deceased members of the Beaver gens, two rows of the members of
the Bear gens, one row of the Gray Wolf, one of the Great Turtle, and
so on to the number of eight rows. Husband and wife are separated from
each other and buried in different rows; fathers and their children
the same; but mothers and their children and brothers and sisters
are found in the same row. It shows the power of gentile feeling,
and the quickness with which ancient usages are reverted to under
favorable conditions; for the Tuscaroras are now christianized without
surrendering the practice. An Onondaga Indian informed the writer
that the same mode of burial by gentes now prevailed at the Onondaga
and Oneida cemeteries. While this usage, perhaps, cannot be declared
general among the Indian tribes, there was undoubtedly in ancient times
a tendency to, and preference for this mode of burial.

Among the Iroquois, and what is true of them is generally true of other
Indian tribes in the same status of advancement, all the members of the
gens are mourners at the funeral of a deceased gentilis. The addresses
at the funeral, the preparation of the grave, and the burial of the
body were performed by members of other gentes.

The Village Indians of Mexico and Central America practiced a slovenly
cremation, as well as scaffolding, and burying in the ground. The
former was confined to chiefs and prominent men.

X. _A council of the gens._

The council was the great feature of ancient society, Asiatic,
European and American, from the institution of the gens in savagery
to civilization. It was the instrument of government as well as the
supreme authority over the gens, the tribe, and the confederacy.
Ordinary affairs were adjusted by the chiefs; but those of general
interest were submitted to the determination of a council. As the
council sprang from the gentile organization the two institutions have
come down together through the ages. The Council of Chiefs represents
the ancient method of evolving the wisdom of mankind and applying it
to human affairs. Its history, gentile, tribal, and confederate, would
express the growth of the idea of government in its whole development,
until political society supervened into which the council, changed into
a senate, was transmitted.

The simplest and lowest form of the council was that of the gens. It
was a democratic assembly because every adult male and female member
had a voice upon all questions brought before it. It elected and
deposed its sachem and chiefs, it elected Keepers of the Faith, it
condoned or avenged the murder of a gentilis, and it adopted persons
into the gens. It was the germ of the higher council of the tribe, and
of that still higher of the confederacy, each of which was composed
exclusively of chiefs as representatives of the gentes.

Such were the rights, privileges and obligations of the members of an
Iroquois gens; and such were those of the members of the gentes of the
Indian tribes generally, as far as the investigation has been carried.
When the gentes of the Grecian and Latin tribes are considered, the
same rights privileges and obligations will be found to exist, with the
exception of the I, II, and VI; and with respect to these their ancient
existence is probable though the proof is not perhaps attainable.

All the members of an Iroquois gens were personally free, and they were
bound to defend each other’s freedom; they were equal in privileges and
in personal rights, the sachem and chiefs claiming no superiority; and
they were a brotherhood bound together by the ties of kin. Liberty,
equality, and fraternity, though never formulated, were cardinal
principles of the gens. These facts are material, because the gens
was the unit of a social and governmental system, the foundation upon
which Indian society was organized. A structure composed of such units
would of necessity bear the impress of their character, for as the unit
so the compound. It serves to explain that sense of independence and
personal dignity universally an attribute of Indian character.

Thus substantial and important in the social system was the gens as
it anciently existed among the American aborigines, and as it still
exists in full vitality in many Indian tribes. It was the basis of the
phratry, of the tribe, and of the confederacy of tribes. Its functions
might have been presented more elaborately in several particulars; but
sufficient has been given to show its permanent and durable character.

At the epoch of European discovery the American Indian tribes
generally were organized in gentes, with descent in the female line.
In some tribes, as among the Dakotas, the gentes had fallen out; in
others, as among the Ojibwas, the Omahas, and the Mayas of Yucatan,
descent had been changed from the female to the male line. Throughout
aboriginal America the gens took its name from some animal, or
inanimate object, and never from a person. In this early condition
of society, the individuality of persons was lost in the gens. It is
at least presumable that the gentes of the Grecian and Latin tribes
were so named at some anterior period; but when they first came under
historical notice, they were named after persons. In some of the
tribes, as the Moqui Village Indians of New Mexico, the members of the
gens claimed their descent from the animal whose name they bore—their
remote ancestors having been transformed by the Great Spirit from
the animal into the human form. The Crane gens of the Ojibwas have a
similar legend. In some tribes the members of a gens will not eat the
animal whose name they bear, in which they are doubtless influenced by
this consideration.

With respect to the number of persons in a gens it varied with the
number of the gentes, and with the prosperity or decadence of the
tribe. Three thousand Senecas divided equally among eight gentes would
give an average of three hundred and seventy-five persons to a gens.
Fifteen thousand Ojibwas divided equally among twenty-three gentes
would give six hundred and fifty persons to a gens. The Cherokees
would average more than a thousand to a gens. In the present condition
of the principal Indian tribes the number of persons in each gens would
range from one hundred to a thousand.

One of the oldest and most widely prevalent institutions of mankind,
the gentes have been closely identified with human progress upon
which they have exercised a powerful influence. They have been found
in tribes in the Status of savagery, in the Lower, in the Middle,
and in the Upper Status of barbarism on different continents, and in
full vitality in the Grecian and Latin tribes after civilization had
commenced. Every family of mankind, except the Polynesian, seems to
have come under the gentile organization, and to have been indebted to
it for preservation, and for the means of progress. It finds its only
parallel in length of duration in systems of consanguinity, which,
springing up at a still earlier period, have remained to the present
time, although the marriage usages in which they originated have long
since disappeared.

From its early institution, and from its maintenance through such
immense stretches of time, the peculiar adaptation of the gentile
organization to mankind, while in a savage and in a barbarous state,
must be regarded as abundantly demonstrated.



CHAPTER III.

THE IROQUOIS PHRATRY.

    DEFINITION OF A PHRATRY.—KINDRED GENTES REUNITED IN A
    HIGHER ORGANIZATION.—PHRATRY OF THE IROQUOIS TRIBES.—ITS
    COMPOSITION.—ITS USES AND FUNCTIONS.—SOCIAL AND
    RELIGIOUS.—ILLUSTRATIONS.—THE ANALOGUE OF THE GRECIAN PHRATRY;
    BUT IN ITS ARCHAIC FORM.—PHRATRIES OF THE CHOCTAS.—OF THE
    CHICKASAS.—OF THE MOHEGANS.—OF THE THLINKEETS.—THEIR
    PROBABLE UNIVERSALITY IN THE TRIBES OF THE AMERICAN ABORIGINES.


The phratry (φρατρία) is a brotherhood, as the term imports, and a
natural growth from the organization into gentes. It is an organic
union or association of two or more gentes of the same tribe for
certain common objects. These gentes were usually such as had been
formed by the segmentation of an original gens.

Among the Grecian tribes, where the phratric organization was nearly as
constant as the gens, it became a very conspicuous institution. Each
of the four tribes of the Athenians was organized in three phratries,
each composed of thirty gentes, making a total of twelve phratries
and three hundred and sixty gentes. Such precise numerical uniformity
in the composition of each phratry and tribe could not have resulted
from the subdivision of gentes through natural processes. It must
have been produced, as Mr. Grote suggests, by legislative procurement
in the interests of a symmetrical organization. All the gentes of a
tribe, as a rule, were of common descent and bore a common tribal
name, consequently it would not require severe constraint to unite
the specified number in each phratry, and to form the specified
number of phratries in each tribe. But the phratric organization had
a natural foundation in the immediate kinship of certain gentes as
subdivisions of an original gens, which undoubtedly was the basis on
which the Grecian phratry was originally formed. The incorporation of
alien gentes, and transfers by consent or constraint, would explain the
numerical adjustment of the gentes and phratries in the Athenian tribes.

The Roman _curia_ was the analogue of the Grecian phratry. It is
constantly mentioned by Dionysius as a phratry.[70] There were ten
gentes in each _curia_, and ten _curiae_ in each of the three Roman
tribes, making thirty _curiae_ and three hundred gentes of the Romans.
The functions of the Roman _curia_ are much better known than those
of the Grecian phratry, and were higher in degree because the _curia_
entered directly into the functions of government. The assembly of
the gentes (_comitia curiata_) voted by _curiae_, each having one
collective vote. This assembly was the sovereign power of the Roman
People down to the time of Servius Tullius.

Among the functions of the Grecian phratry was the observance of
special religious rites, the condonation or revenge of the murder of a
phrator, and the purification of a murderer after he had escaped the
penalty of his crime preparatory to his restoration to society.[71] At
a later period among the Athenians—for the phratry at Athens survived
the institution of political society under Cleisthenes—it looked after
the registration of citizens, thus becoming the guardian of descents
and of the evidence of citizenship. The wife upon her marriage was
enrolled in the phratry of her husband, and the children of the
marriage were enrolled in the gens and phratry of their father. It
was also the duty of this organization to prosecute the murderer of a
phrator in the courts of justice. These are among its known objects and
functions in the earlier and later periods. Were all the particulars
fully ascertained, the phratry would probably manifest itself in
connection with the common tables, the public games, the funerals of
distinguished men, the earliest army organization, and the proceedings
of councils, as well as in the observance of religious rites and in the
guardianship of social privileges.

The phratry existed in a large number of the tribes of the American
aborigines, where it is seen to arise by natural growth, and to stand
as the second member of the organic series, as among the Grecian and
Latin tribes. It did not possess original governmental functions, as
the gens, tribe and confederacy possessed them; but it was endowed with
certain useful powers in the social system, from the necessity for
some organization larger than a gens and smaller than a tribe, and
especially when the tribe was large. The same institution in essential
features and in character, it presents the organization in its archaic
form and with its archaic functions. A knowledge of the Indian phratry
is necessary to an intelligent understanding of the Grecian and the
Roman.

The eight gentes of the Seneca-Iroquois tribe were reintegrated in two
phratries as follows:

                      _First Phratry._

    _Gentes._—1.  Bear.  2. Wolf.  3. Beaver.  4. Turtle.

                       _Second Phratry._

    _Gentes._—5.  Deer.  6. Snipe.  7. Heron.  8. Hawk.

Each phratry (De-ă-non-dă′-a-yoh) is a brotherhood as this term also
imports. The gentes in the same phratry are brother gentes to each
other, and cousin gentes to those of the other phratry. They are equal
in grade, character and privileges. It is a common practice of the
Senecas to call the gentes of their own phratry brother gentes, and
those of the other phratry their cousin gentes, when they mention them
in their relation to the phratries. Originally marriage was not allowed
between the members of the same phratry; but the members of either
could marry into any gens of the other. This prohibition tends to show
that the gentes of each phratry were subdivisions of an original gens,
and therefore the prohibition against marrying into a person’s own gens
had followed to its subdivisions. This restriction, however, was long
since removed, except with respect to the gens of the individual. A
tradition of the Senecas affirms that the Bear and the Deer were the
original gentes, of which the others were subdivisions. It is thus
seen that the phratry had a natural foundation in the kinship of the
gentes of which it was composed. After their subdivision from increase
of numbers there was a natural tendency to their reunion in a higher
organization for objects common to them all. The same gentes are not
constant in a phratry indefinitely, as will appear when the composition
of the phratries in the remaining Iroquois tribes is considered.
Transfers of particular gentes from one phratry to the other must
have occurred when the equilibrium in their respective numbers was
disturbed. It is important to know the simple manner in which this
organization springs up, and the facility with which it is managed,
as a part of the social system of ancient society. With the increase
of numbers in a gens, followed by local separation of its members,
segmentation occurred, and the seceding portion adopted a new gentile
name. But a tradition of their former unity would remain, and become
the basis of their reorganization in a phratry.

In like manner the Cayuga-Iroquois have eight gentes in two phratries;
but these gentes are not divided equally between them. They are the
following:

                          _First Phratry._

    _Gentes._—1. Bear. 2. Wolf. 3. Turtle. 4. Snipe. 5. Eel.

                          _Second Phratry._

             _Gentes._—6. Deer. 7. Beaver. 8. Hawk.

Seven of these gentes are the same as those of the Senecas; but
the Heron gens has disappeared, and the Eel takes its place, but
transferred to the opposite phratry. The Beaver and the Turtle gentes
also have exchanged phratries. The Cayugas style the gentes of the same
phratry brother gentes to each other, and those of the opposite phratry
their cousin gentes.

The Onondaga-Iroquois have the same number of gentes, but two of them
differ in name from those of the Senecas. They are organized in two
phratries as follows:

                         _First Phratry._

    _Gentes._—1. Wolf.  2. Turtle. 3. Snipe. 4. Beaver. 5. Ball.

                         _Second Phratry._

               _Gentes._—6. Deer. 7. Eel. 8. Bear.

Here again the composition of the phratries is different from that of
the Senecas. Three of the gentes in the first phratry are the same in
each; but the Bear gens has been transferred to the opposite phratry
and is now found with the Deer. The division of gentes is also unequal,
as among the Cayugas. The gentes in the same phratry are called brother
gentes to each other, and those in the other their cousin gentes. While
the Onondagas have no Hawk, the Senecas have no Eel gens; but the
members of the two fraternize when they meet, claiming that there is a
connection between them.

The Mohawks and Oneidas have but three gentes, the Bear, the Wolf, and
the Turtle, and no phratries. When the confederacy was formed, seven
of the eight Seneca gentes existed in the several tribes as is shown
by the establishment of sachemships in them; but the Mohawks and
Oneidas then had only the three named. It shows that they had then lost
an entire phratry, and one gens of that remaining, if it is assumed
that the original tribes were once composed of the same gentes. When
a tribe organized in gentes and phratries subdivides, it might occur
on the line of the phratric organization. Although the members of a
tribe are intermingled throughout by marriage, each gens in a phratry
is composed of females with their children and descendants, through
females, who formed the body of the phratry. They would incline at
least to remain locally together, and thus might become detached in a
body. The male members of the gens married to women of other gentes and
remaining with their wives would not affect the gens since the children
of the males do not belong to its connection. If the minute history
of the Indian tribes is ever recovered it must be sought through the
gentes and phratries, which can be followed from tribe to tribe. In
such an investigation it will deserve attention whether tribes ever
disintegrated by phratries. It is at least improbable.

The Tuscarora-Iroquois became detached from the main stock at some
unknown period in the past, and inhabited the Neuse river region in
North Carolina at the time of their discovery. About A. D. 1712 they
were forced out of this area, whereupon they removed to the country of
the Iroquois and were admitted into the confederacy as a sixth member.
They have eight gentes organized in two phratries, as follows:

                       _First Phratry._

    _Gentes_.—1. Bear. 2. Beaver. 3. Great Turtle. 4. Eel.

                       _Second Phratry._

    _Gentes._—5. Gray Wolf. 6. Yellow Wolf. 7. Little Turtle. 8. Snipe.

They have six gentes in common with the Cayugas and Onondagas, five
in common with the Senecas, and three in common with the Mohawks and
Oneidas. The Deer gens, which they once possessed, became extinct in
modern times. It will be noticed, also, that the Wolf gens is now
divided into two, the Gray and the Yellow, and the Turtle into two,
the Great and Little. Three of the gentes in the first phratry are the
same with three in the first phratry of the Senecas and Cayugas, with
the exception that the Wolf gens is double. As several hundred years
elapsed between the separation of the Tuscaroras from their congeners
and their return, it affords some evidence of permanence in the
existence of a gens. The gentes in the same phratry are called brother
gentes to each other, and those in the other phratry their cousin
gentes, as among the other tribes.

From the differences in the composition of the phratries in the several
tribes it seems probable that the phratries are modified in their
gentes at intervals of time to meet changes of condition. Some gentes
prosper and increase in numbers, while others through calamities
decline, and others become extinct; so that transfers of gentes from
one phratry to another were found necessary to preserve some degree of
equality in the number of phrators in each. The phratric organization
has existed among the Iroquois from time immemorial. It is probably
older than the confederacy which was established more than four
centuries ago. The amount of difference in their composition, as to
the gentes they contain, represents the vicissitudes through which
each tribe has passed in the interval. In any view of the matter it is
small, tending to illustrate the permanence of the phratry as well as
the gens.

The Iroquois tribes had a total of thirty-eight gentes, and in four of
the tribes a total of eight phratries.

In its objects and uses the Iroquois phratry falls below the Grecian,
as would be supposed, although our knowledge of the functions of the
latter is limited; and below what is known of the uses of the phratry
among the Roman tribes. In comparing the latter with the former we
pass backward through two ethnical periods, and into a very different
condition of society. The difference is in the degree of progress, and
not in kind; for we have the same institution in each race, derived
from the same or a similar germ, and preserved by each through immense
periods of time as a part of a social system. Gentile society remained
of necessity among the Grecian and Roman tribes until political society
supervened; and it remained among the Iroquois tribes because they were
still two ethnical periods below civilization. Every fact, therefore,
in relation to the functions and uses of the Indian phratry is
important, because it tends to illustrate the archaic character of an
institution which became so influential in a more developed condition
of society.

The phratry, among the Iroquois, was partly for social and partly
for religious objects. Its functions and uses can be best shown by
practical illustrations. We begin with the lowest, with games, which
were of common occurrence at tribal and confederate councils. In the
ball game, for example, among the Senecas, they play by phratries, one
against the other; and they bet against each other upon the result of
the game. Each phratry puts forward its best players, usually from six
to ten on a side, and the members of each phratry assemble together but
upon opposite sides of the field in which the game is played. Before it
commences, articles of personal property are hazarded upon the result
by members of the opposite phratries. These are deposited with keepers
to abide the event. The game is played with spirit and enthusiasm,
and is an exciting spectacle. The members of each phratry, from their
opposite stations, watch the game with eagerness, and cheer their
respective players at every successful turn of the game.[72]

In many ways the phratric organization manifested itself. At a council
of the tribe the sachems and chiefs in each phratry usually seated
themselves on opposite sides of an imaginary council-fire, and the
speakers addressed the two opposite bodies as the representatives of
the phratries. Formalities, such as these, have a peculiar charm for
the Red Man in the transaction of business.

Again; when a murder had been committed it was usual for the gens
of the murdered person to meet in council; and, after ascertaining
the facts, to take measures for avenging the deed. The gens of the
criminal also held a council, and endeavored to effect an adjustment
or condonation of the crime with the gens of the murdered person. But
it often happened that the gens of the criminal called upon the other
gentes of their phratry, when the slayer and the slain belonged to
opposite phratries, to unite with them to obtain a condonation of the
crime. In such a case the phratry held a council, and then addressed
itself to the other phratry to which it sent a delegation with a
belt of white wampum asking for a council of the phratry, and for an
adjustment of the crime. They offered reparation to the family and
gens of the murdered person in expressions of regret and in presents
of value. Negotiations were continued between the two councils until
an affirmative or a negative conclusion was reached. The influence
of a phratry composed of several gentes would be greater than that
of a single gens; and by calling into action the opposite phratry
the probability of a condonation would be increased, especially if
there were extenuating circumstances. We may thus see how naturally
the Grecian phratry, prior to civilization, assumed the principal
though not exclusive management of cases of murder, and also of the
purification of the murderer if he escaped punishment; and, after the
institution of political society, with what propriety the phratry
assumed the duty of prosecuting the murderer in the courts of justice.

At the funerals of persons of recognized importance in the tribe, the
phratric organization manifested itself in a conspicuous manner. The
phrators of the decedent in a body were the mourners, and the members
of the opposite phratry conducted the ceremonies. In the case of a
sachem it was usual for the opposite phratry to send, immediately
after the funeral, the official wampum belt of the deceased ruler to
the central council fire at Onondaga, as a notification of his demise.
This was retained until the installation of his successor, when it was
bestowed upon him as the insignia of his office. At the funeral of
Handsome Lake (Gä-ne-o-di′-yo), one of the eight Seneca sachems (which
occurred some years ago), there was an assemblage of sachems and chiefs
to the number of twenty-seven, and a large concourse of members of
both phratries. The customary address to the dead body, and the other
addresses before the removal of the body, were made by members of the
opposite phratry. After the addresses were concluded, the body was
borne to the grave by persons selected from the last named phratry,
followed, first, by the sachems and chiefs, then by the family and
gens of the decedent, next by his remaining phrators, and last by the
members of the opposite phratry. After the body had been deposited in
the grave the sachems and chiefs formed in a circle around it for the
purpose of filling it with earth. Each in turn, commencing with the
senior in years, cast in three shovelfuls, a typical number in their
religious system; of which the first had relation to the Great Spirit,
the second to the Sun, and the third to Mother Earth. When the grave
was filled the senior sachem, by a figure of speech, deposited “the
horns” of the departed sachem, emblematical of his office, upon the top
of the grave over his head, there to remain until his successor was
installed. In that subsequent ceremony, “the horns” were said to be
taken from the grave of the deceased ruler, and placed upon the head of
his successor.[73] The social and religious functions of the phratry,
and its naturalness in the organic system of ancient society, are
rendered apparent by this single usage.

The phratry was also directly concerned in the election of sachems
and chiefs of the several gentes, upon which they had a negative as
well as a confirmative vote. After the gens of a deceased sachem had
elected his successor, or had elected a chief of the second grade,
it was necessary, as elsewhere stated, that their choice should be
accepted and confirmed by each phratry. It was expected that the gentes
of the same phratry would confirm the choice almost as a matter of
course; but the opposite phratry also must acquiesce, and from this
source opposition sometimes appeared. A council of each phratry was
held and pronounced upon the question of acceptance or rejection. If
the nomination made was accepted by both it became complete; but if
either refused it was thereby set aside, and a new election was made
by the gens. When the choice made by the gens had been accepted by
the phratries, it was still necessary, as before stated, that the new
sachem, or the new chief, should be invested by the council of the
confederacy, which alone had power to invest, with office.

The Senecas have now lost their Medicine Lodges which fell out in
modern times; but they formerly existed and formed a prominent part
of their religious system. To hold a Medicine Lodge was to observe
their highest religious rites, and to practice their highest religious
mysteries. They had two such organizations, one in each phratry,
which shows still further the natural connection of the phratry with
religious observances. Very little is now known concerning these lodges
or their ceremonies. Each was a brotherhood, into which new members
were admitted by a formal initiation.

The phratry was without governmental functions in the strict sense of
the phrase, these being confined to the gens, tribe and confederacy;
but it entered into their social affairs with large administrative
powers, and would have concerned itself more and more with their
religious affairs as the condition of the people advanced. Unlike the
Grecian phratry and the Roman _curia_ it had no official head. There
was no chief of the phratry as such, and no religious functionaries
belonging to it as distinguished from the gens and tribe. The phratric
institution among the Iroquois was in its rudimentary archaic form;
but it grew into life by natural and inevitable development, and
remained permanent because it met necessary wants. Every institution of
mankind which attained permanence will be found linked with a perpetual
want. With the gens, tribe and confederacy in existence the presence of
the phratry was substantially assured. It required time, however, and
further experience to manifest all the uses to which it might be made
subservient.

Among the Village Indians of Mexico and Central America the phratry
must have existed, reasoning upon general principles; and have been
a more fully developed and influential organization than among the
Iroquois. Unfortunately, mere glimpses at such an institution are
all that can be found in the teeming narratives of the Spanish
writers within the first century after the Spanish conquest. The four
“lineages” of the Tlascalans who occupied the four quarters of the
pueblo of Tlascala, were, in all probability, so many phratries. They
were sufficiently numerous for four tribes; but as they occupied the
same pueblo and spoke the same dialect the phratric organization was
apparently a necessity. Each lineage, or phratry so to call it, had a
distinct military organization, a peculiar costume and banner, and its
head war-chief (_Teuctli_), who was its general military commander.
They went forth to battle by phratries. The organization of a military
force by phratries and by tribes was not unknown to the Homeric Greeks.
Thus; Nestor advises Agamemnon to “separate the troops by phratries and
by tribes, so that phratry may support phratry and tribe.”[74]
Under gentile institutions of the most advanced type the principle
of kin became, to a considerable extent, the basis of the army
organization. The Aztecs, in like manner, occupied the pueblo of Mexico
in four distinct divisions, the people of each of which were more
nearly related to each other than to the people of the other divisions.
They were separate lineages, like the Tlascalan, and it seems highly
probable were four phratries, separately organized as such. They were
distinguished from each other by costumes and standards, and went out
to war as separate divisions. Their geographical areas were called the
four quarters of Mexico. This subject will be referred to again.

With respect to the prevalence of this organization, among the Indian
tribes in the Lower Status of barbarism, the subject has been but
slightly investigated. It is probable that it was general in the
principal tribes, from the natural manner in which it springs up as a
necessary member of the organic series, and from the uses, other than
governmental, to which it was adapted.

In some of the tribes the phratries stand out prominently upon the
face of their organization. Thus, the Chocta gentes are united in
two phratries which must be mentioned first in order to show the
relation of the gentes to each other. The first phratry is called
“Divided People,” and contains four gentes. The second is called
“Beloved People,” and also contains four gentes. This separation of
the people into two divisions by gentes created two phratries. Some
knowledge of the functions of these phratries is of course desirable;
but without it, the fact of their existence is established by the
divisions themselves. The evolution of a confederacy from a pair
of gentes, for less than two are never found in any tribe, may be
deduced, theoretically, from the known facts of Indian experience.
Thus, the gens increases in the number of its members and divides
into two; these again subdivide, and in time reunite in two or more
phratries. These phratries form a tribe, and its members speak the
same dialect. In course of time this tribe falls into several by the
process of segmentation, which in turn reunite in a confederacy. Such a
confederacy is a growth, through the tribe and phratry, from a pair of
gentes.

The Chickasas are organized in two phratries, of which one contains
four, and the other eight gentes, as follows:

                 I. _Panther Phratry._

    _Gentes._—1. Wild Cat. 2. Bird. 3. Fish. 4. Deer.

                II. _Spanish Phratry._

    _Gentes._—5. Raccoon. 6. Spanish. 7. Royal. 8. Hush-ko′-ni.
    9. Squirrel.  10. Alligator,  11. Wolf.  12. Blackbird.

The particulars with respect to the Chocta and Chickasa phratries I am
unable to present. Some fourteen years ago these organizations were
given to me by Rev. Doctor Cyrus Byington and Rev. Charles C. Copeland,
but without discussing their uses and functions.

A very complete illustration of the manner in which phratries are
formed by natural growth, through the subdivision of gentes, is
presented by the organization of the Mohegan tribe. It had three
original gentes, the Wolf, the Turtle, and the Turkey.

Each of these subdivided, and the subdivisions became independent
gentes; but they retained the names of the original gentes as their
respective phratric names. In other words the subdivisions of each
gens reorganized in a phratry. It proves conclusively the natural
process by which, in course of time, a gens breaks up into several, and
these remain united in a phratric organization, which is expressed by
assuming a phratric name. They are as follows:

               I. _Wolf Phratry._

    _Gentes._—1. Wolf. 2. Bear. 3. Dog. 4. Opossum.

              II. _Turtle Phratry._

    _Gentes._—5. Little Turtle. 6. Mud Turtle. 7. Great Turtle.
    8. Yellow Eel.

              III. _Turkey Phratry._

    _Gentes._—9. Turkey. 10. Crane. 11. Chicken.

It is thus seen that the original Wolf gens divided into four gentes,
the Turtle into four, and the Turkey into three. Each new gens took a
new name, the original retaining its own, which became, by seniority,
that of the phratry. It is rare among the American Indian tribes
to find such plain evidence of the segmentation of gentes in their
external organization, followed by the formation into phratries of
their respective subdivisions. It shows also that the phratry is
founded upon the kinship of the gentes. As a rule the name of the
original gens out of which others had formed is not known; but in each
of these cases it remains as the name of the phratry. Since the latter,
like the Grecian, was a social and religious rather than a governmental
organization, it is externally less conspicuous than a gens or tribe
which were essential to the government of society. The name of but one
of the twelve Athenian phratries has come down to us in history. Those
of the Iroquois had no name but that of a brotherhood.

The Delawares and Munsees have the same three gentes, the Wolf, the
Turtle, and the Turkey. Among the Delawares there are twelve embryo
gentes in each tribe, but they seem to be lineages within the gentes
and had not taken gentile names. It was a movement, however, in that
direction.

The phratry also appears among the Thlinkeets of the Northwest coast,
upon the surface of their organization into gentes. They have two
phratries, as follows:

                   I. _Wolf Phratry._

    _Gentes._—1. Bear. 2. Eagle. 3. Dolphin. 4. Shark. 5. Alca.

                  II. _Raven Phratry._

    _Gentes._—6. Frog. 7. Goose. 8. Sea-lion. 9. Owl. 10. Salmon.

Intermarriage in the phratry is prohibited, which shows, of itself,
that the gentes of each phratry were derived from an original gens.[75]
The members of any gens in the Wolf phratry could marry into any gens
of the opposite phratry, and _vice versâ_.

From the foregoing facts the existence of the phratry is established
in several linguistic stocks of the American aborigines. Its presence
in the tribes named raises a presumption of its general prevalence in
the Ganowánian family. Among the Village Indians, where the numbers
in a gens and tribe were greater, it would necessarily have been more
important and consequently more fully developed. As an institution it
was still in its archaic form, but it possessed the essential elements
of the Grecian and the Roman. It can now be asserted that the full
organic series of ancient society exists in full vitality upon the
American continent; namely, the gens, the phratry, the tribe, and the
confederacy of tribes. With further proofs yet to be adduced, the
universality of the gentile organization upon all the continents will
be established.

If future investigation is directed specially to the functions of the
phratric organization among the tribes of the American aborigines, the
knowledge gained will explain many peculiarities of Indian life and
manners not well understood, and throw additional light upon their
usages and customs, and upon their plan of life and government.



CHAPTER IV.

THE IROQUOIS TRIBE.

    THE TRIBE AS AN ORGANIZATION.—COMPOSED OF GENTES SPEAKING
    THE SAME DIALECT.—SEPARATION IN AREA LED TO DIVERGENCE
    OF SPEECH, AND SEGMENTATION.—THE TRIBE A NATURAL
    GROWTH.—ILLUSTRATIONS.—ATTRIBUTES OF A TRIBE.—A TERRITORY AND
    NAME.—AN EXCLUSIVE DIALECT.—THE RIGHT TO INVEST AND DEPOSE ITS
    SACHEMS AND CHIEFS.—A RELIGIOUS FAITH AND WORSHIP.—A COUNCIL
    OF CHIEFS.—A HEAD-CHIEF OF TRIBE IN SOME INSTANCES.—THREE
    SUCCESSIVE FORMS OF GENTILE GOVERNMENT: FIRST, A GOVERNMENT OF
    ONE POWER; SECOND, OF TWO POWERS; THIRD, OF THREE POWERS.


It is difficult to describe an Indian tribe by the affirmative elements
of its composition. Nevertheless it is clearly marked, and the
ultimate organization of the great body of the American aborigines.
The large number of independent tribes into which they had fallen by
the natural process of segmentation, is the striking characteristic
of their condition. Each tribe was individualized by a name, by a
separate dialect, by a supreme government, and by the possession of a
territory which it occupied and defended as its own. The tribes were as
numerous as the dialects, for separation did not become complete until
dialectical variation had commenced. Indian tribes, therefore, are
natural growths through the separation of the same people in the area
of their occupation, followed by divergence of speech, segmentation,
and independence.

We have seen that the phratry was not so much a governmental as a
social organization, while the gens, tribe, and confederacy, were
necessary and logical stages of progress in the growth of the idea
of government. A confederacy could not exist, under gentile society,
without tribes as a basis; nor could tribes exist without gentes,
though they might without phratries. In this chapter I will endeavor to
point out the manner in which these numerous tribes were formed, and,
presumptively out of one original people; the causes which produced
their perpetual segmentation; and the principal attributes which
distinguished an Indian tribe as an organization.

The exclusive possession of a dialect and of a territory has led to the
application of the term _nation_ to many Indian tribes, notwithstanding
the fewness of the people in each. _Tribe_ and _nation_, however,
are not strict equivalents. A nation does not arise, under gentile
institutions, until the tribes united under the same government have
coalesced into one people, as the four Athenian tribes coalesced in
Attica, three Dorian tribes at Sparta, and three Latin and Sabine
tribes at Rome. Federation requires independent tribes in separate
territorial areas; but coalescence unites them by a higher process in
the same area, although the tendency to local separation by gentes and
by tribes would continue. The confederacy is the nearest analogue of
the nation, but not strictly equivalent. Where the gentile organization
exists, the organic series gives all the terms which are needed for a
correct description.

An Indian tribe is composed of several gentes, developed from two or
more, all the members of which are intermingled by marriage, and all
of whom speak the same dialect. To a stranger the tribe is visible,
and not the gens. The instances are extremely rare, among the American
aborigines, in which the tribe embraced peoples speaking different
dialects. When such cases are found, it resulted from the union of a
weaker with a stronger tribe speaking a closely related dialect, as
the union of the Missouris with the Otoes after the overthrow of the
former. The fact that the great body of the aborigines were found in
independent tribes illustrates the slow and difficult growth of the
idea of government under gentile institutions. A small portion only had
attained to the ultimate stage known among them, that of a confederacy
of tribes speaking dialects of the same stock language. A coalescence
of tribes into a nation had not occurred in any case in any part of
America.

A constant tendency to disintegration, which has proved such a
hinderance to progress among savage and barbarous tribes, existed
in the elements of the gentile organization. It was aggravated by a
further tendency to divergence of speech, which was inseparable from
their social state and the large areas of their occupation. A verbal
language, although remarkably persistent in its vocables, and still
more persistent in its grammatical forms, is incapable of permanence.
Separation of the people in area was followed in time by variation in
speech; and this, in turn, led to separation in interests and ultimate
independence. It was not the work of a brief period, but of centuries
of time, aggregating finally into thousands of years. The great number
of dialects and stock languages in North and South America, which
presumptively were derived, the Eskimo excepted, from one original
language, require for their formation the time measured by three
ethnical periods.

New tribes as well as new gentes were constantly forming by natural
growth; and the process was sensibly accelerated by the great expanse
of the American continent. The method was simple. In the first place
there would occur a gradual outflow of people from some overstocked
geographical centre, which possessed superior advantages in the means
of subsistence. Continued from year to year, a considerable population
would thus be developed at a distance from the original seat of the
tribe. In course of time the emigrants would become distinct in
interests, strangers in feeling, and last of all, divergent in speech.
Separation and independence would follow, although their territories
were contiguous. A new tribe was thus created. This is a concise
statement of the manner in which the tribes of the American aborigines
were formed, but the statement must be taken as general. Repeating
itself from age to age in newly acquired as well as in old areas, it
must be regarded as a natural as well as inevitable result of the
gentile organization, united with the necessities of their condition.
When increased numbers pressed upon the means of subsistence, the
surplus removed to a new seat where they established themselves with
facility, because the government was perfect in every gens, and in any
number of gentes united in a band. Among the Village Indians the same
thing repeated itself in a slightly different manner. When a village
became overcrowded with numbers, a colony went up or down on the same
stream and commenced a new village. Repeated at intervals of time
several such villages would appear, each independent of the other and a
self-governing body; but united in a league or confederacy for mutual
protection. Dialectical variation would finally spring up, and thus
complete their growth into tribes.

The manner in which tribes are evolved from each other can be shown
directly by examples. The fact of separation is derived in part from
tradition, in part from the possession by each of a number of the same
gentes, and deduced in part from the relations of their dialects.
Tribes formed by the subdivisions of an original tribe would possess a
number of gentes in common, and speak dialects of the same language.
After several centuries of separation they would still have a number of
the same gentes. Thus, the Hurons, now Wyandotes, have six gentes of
the same name with six of the gentes of the Seneca-Iroquois, after at
least four hundred years of separation. The Potawattamies have eight
gentes of the same name with eight among the Ojibwas, while the former
have six, and the latter fourteen, which are different; showing that
new gentes have been formed in each tribe by segmentation since their
separation. A still older offshoot from the Ojibwas, or from the common
parent tribe of both, the Miamis, have but three gentes in common with
the former, namely, the Wolf, the Loon, and the Eagle. The minute
social history of the tribes of the Ganowánian family is locked up in
the life and growth of the gentes. If investigation is ever turned
strongly in this direction, the gentes themselves would become reliable
guides, both in respect to the order of separation from each other of
the tribes of the same stock, and possibly of the great stocks of the
aborigines.

The following illustrations are drawn from tribes in the Lower Status
of barbarism. When discovered, the eight Missouri tribes occupied the
banks of the Missouri river for more than a thousand miles; together
with the banks of its tributaries, the Kansas and the Platte; and also
the smaller rivers of Iowa. They also occupied the west bank of the
Mississippi down to the Arkansas. Their dialects show that the people
were in three tribes before the last subdivisions; namely, first, the
Punkas and Omahas, second, the Iowas, Otoes and Missouris, and third,
the Kaws, Osages and Quappas. These three were undoubtedly subdivisions
of a single original tribe, because their several dialects are still
much nearer to each other than to any other dialect of the Dakotian
stock language to which they belong. There is, therefore, a linguistic
necessity for their derivation from an original tribe. A gradual spread
from a central point on this river along its banks, both above and
below, would lead to a separation in interests with the increase of
distance between their settlements, followed by divergence of speech,
and finally by independence. A people thus extending themselves along a
river in a prairie country might separate, first into three tribes, and
afterwards into eight, and the organization of each subdivision remain
complete. Division was neither a shock, nor an appreciated calamity;
but a separation into parts by natural expansion over a larger area,
followed by a complete segmentation. The uppermost tribe on the
Missouri were the Punkas at the mouth of the Niobrara river, and the
lowermost the Quappas at the mouth of the Arkansas on the Mississippi,
with an interval of near fifteen hundred miles between them. The
intermediate region, confined to the narrow belt of forest upon the
Missouri, was held by the remaining six tribes. They were strictly
River Tribes.

Another illustration may be found in the tribes of Lake Superior. The
Ojibwas, Otawas[76] and Potawattamies are subdivisions of an original
tribe; the Ojibwas representing the stem, because they remained at
the original seat at the great fisheries upon the outlet of the lake.
Moreover, they are styled “Elder Brother” by the remaining two; while
the Otawas were styled “Next Older Brother,” and the Potawattamies
“Younger Brother.” The last tribe separated first, and the Otawas last,
as is shown by the relative amount of dialectical variation, that of
the former being greatest. At the time of their discovery, A. D. 1641,
the Ojibwas were seated at the Rapids on the outlet of Lake Superior,
from which point they had spread along the southern shore of the
lake to the site of Ontonagon, along its northeastern shore, and down
the St. Mary River well toward Lake Huron. Their position possessed
remarkable advantages for a fish and game subsistence, which, as they
did not cultivate maize and plants, was their main reliance.[77] It
was second to none in North America, with the single exception of the
Valley of the Columbia. With such advantages they were certain to
develop a large Indian population, and to send out successive bands of
emigrants to become independent tribes. The Potawattamies occupied a
region on the confines of Upper Michigan and Wisconsin, from which the
Dakotas in 1641, were in the act of expelling them. At the same time
the Otawas, whose earlier residence is supposed to have been on the
Otawa river of Canada, had drawn westward and were then seated upon
the Georgian Bay, the Manitouline Islands and at Mackinaw, from which
points they were spreading southward over Lower Michigan. Originally
one people, and possessing the same gentes, they had succeeded in
appropriating a large area. Separation in place, and distance between
their settlements, had long before their discovery resulted in the
formation of dialects, and in tribal independence. The three tribes,
whose territories were contiguous, had formed an alliance for mutual
protection, known among Americans as “the Otawa Confederacy.” It was a
league, offensive and defensive, and not, probably, a close confederacy
like that of the Iroquois.

Prior to these secessions another affiliated tribe, the Miamis, had
broken off from the Ojibwa stock, or the common parent tribe, and
migrated to central Illinois and western Indiana. Following in the
track of this migration were the Illinois, another and later offshoot
from the same stem, who afterwards subdivided into the Peorias,
Kaskaskias, Weaws, and Piankeshaws. Their dialects, with that of the
Miamis, find their nearest affinity with the Ojibwa, and next with the
Cree.[78] The outflow of all these tribes from the central seat at
the great fisheries of Lake Superior is a significant fact, because it
illustrates the manner in which tribes are formed in connection with
natural centres of subsistence. The New England, Delaware, Maryland,
Virginia and Carolina Algonkins were, in all probability, derived from
the same source. Several centuries would be required for the formation
of the dialects first named, and for the production of the amount of
variation they now exhibit.

The foregoing examples represent the natural process by which tribes
are evolved from each other, or from a parent tribe established in
an advantageous position. Each emigrating band was in the nature of
a military colony, if it may be so strongly characterized, seeking
to acquire and hold a new area; preserving at first, and as long as
possible, a connection with the mother tribe. By these successive
movements they sought to expand their joint possessions, and afterward
to resist the intrusion of alien people within their limits. It is a
noticeable fact that Indian tribes speaking dialects of the same stock
language have usually been found in territorial continuity, however
extended their common area. The same has, in the main, been true of
all the tribes of mankind linguistically united. It is because the
people, spreading from some geographical centre, and maintaining an
arduous struggle for subsistence, and for the possession of their new
territories, have preserved their connection with the mother land as
a means of succor in times of danger, and as a place of refuge in
calamity.

It required special advantages in the means of subsistence to render
any area an initial point of migration through the gradual development
of a surplus population. These natural centres were few in number in
North America. There are but three. First among them is the Valley of
the Columbia, the most extraordinary region on the face of the earth
in the variety and amount of subsistence it afforded, prior to the
cultivation of maize and plants;[79] second, the peninsula between
Lakes Superior, Huron and Michigan, the seat of the Ojibwas, and the
nursery land of many Indian tribes; and third, the lake region in
Minnesota, the nursery ground of the present Dakota tribes. These are
the only regions in North America that can be called natural centres
of subsistence, and natural sources of surplus numbers. There are
reasons for believing that Minnesota was a part of the Algonkin area
before it was occupied by the Dakotas. When the cultivation of maize
and plants came in, it tended to localize the people and support them
in smaller areas, as well as to increase their numbers; but it failed
to transfer the control of the continent to the most advanced tribes
of Village Indians, who subsisted almost entirely by cultivation.
Horticulture spread among the principal tribes in the Lower Status of
barbarism and greatly improved their condition. They held, with the
non-horticultural tribes, the great areas of North America when it was
discovered, and from their ranks the continent was being replenished
with inhabitants.[80]

The multiplication of tribes and dialects has been the fruitful source
of the incessant warfare of the aborigines upon each other. As a rule
the most persistent warfare has been waged between tribes speaking
different stock languages; as, for example, between the Iroquois and
Algonkin tribes, and between the Dakota tribes and the same. On the
contrary the Algonkin and Dakota tribes severally have, in general,
lived at peace among themselves. Had it been otherwise they would
not have been found in the occupation of continuous areas. The worst
exception were the Iroquois, who pursued a war of extermination against
their kindred tribes, the Eries, the Neutral Nation, the Hurons and the
Susquehannocks. Tribes speaking dialects of the same stock language are
able to communicate orally and thus compose their differences. They
also learned, in virtue of their common descent, to depend upon each
other as natural allies.

Numbers within a given area were limited by the amount of subsistence
it afforded. When fish and game were the main reliance for food, it
required an immense area to maintain a small tribe. After farinaceous
food was superadded to fish and game, the area occupied by a tribe was
still a large one in proportion to the number of the people. New York,
with its forty-seven thousand square miles, never contained at any time
more than twenty-five thousand Indians, including with the Iroquois
the Algonkins on the east side of the Hudson and upon Long Island, and
the Eries and Neutral Nation in the western section of the state. A
personal government founded upon gentes was incapable of developing
sufficient central power to follow and control the increasing numbers
of the people, unless they remained within a reasonable distance from
each other.

Among the Village Indians of New Mexico, Mexico, and Central America
an increase of numbers in a small area did not arrest the process of
disintegration. Each pueblo was usually an independent self-governing
community. Where several pueblos were seated near each other on the
same stream, the people were usually of common descent, and either
under a tribal or confederate government. There are some seven stock
languages in New Mexico alone, each spoken in several dialects. At
the time of Coronado’s expedition, 1540-1542, the villages found were
numerous but small. There were seven each of Cibola, Tucayan, Quivira,
and Hemez, and twelve of Tiguex;[81] and other groups indicating a
linguistic connection of their members. Whether or not each group was
confederated we are not informed. The seven Moqui Pueblos (the Tucayan
Villages of Coronado’s expedition), are said to be confederated at the
present time, and probably were at the time of their discovery.

The process of subdivision, illustrated by the foregoing examples, has
been operating among the American aborigines for thousands of years,
until upwards of forty stock languages, as near as is known, have been
developed in North America alone; each spoken in a number of dialects,
by an equal number of independent tribes. Their experience, probably,
was but a repetition of that of the tribes of Asia, Europe and Africa,
when they were in corresponding conditions.

From the preceding observations, it is apparent that an American Indian
tribe is a very simple as well as humble organization. It required but
a few hundreds, and, at most, a few thousand people to form a tribe,
and place it in a respectable position in the Ganowánian family.

It remains to present the functions and attributes of an Indian tribe,
which may be discussed under the following propositions:

      I. _The possession of a territory and a name._
     II. _The exclusive possession of a dialect._
    III. _The right to invest sachems and chiefs elected by the gentes._
     IV. _The right to depose these sachems and chiefs._
      V. _The possession of a religious faith and worship._
     VI. _A supreme government consisting of a council of chiefs._
    VII. _A head-chief of the tribe in some instances._

It will be sufficient to make a brief reference to each of these
several attributes of a tribe.

I. _The possession of a territory and a name._

Their territory consisted of the area of their actual settlements, and
so much of the surrounding region as the tribe ranged over in hunting
and fishing, and were able to defend against the encroachments of
other tribes. Without this area was a wide margin of neutral grounds,
separating them from their nearest frontegers if they spoke a different
language, and claimed by neither; but less wide, and less clearly
marked, when they spoke dialects of the same language. The country
thus imperfectly defined, whether large or small, was the domain of
the tribe, recognized as such by other tribes, and defended as such by
themselves.

In due time the tribe became individualized by a name, which, from
their usual character, must have been in many cases accidental rather
than deliberate. Thus, the Senecas styled themselves the “Great
Hill People” (Nun-da′-wä-o-no), the Tuscaroras, “Shirt-wearing
People” (Dus-ga′-o-weh-o-no′), the Sissetons, “Village of the Marsh”
(Sis-se′-to-wän), the Ogalallas, “Camp Movers” (O-ga-lal′-lä), the
Omahas, “Upstream People” (O-mä′-hä), the Iowas, “Dusty Noses”
(Pa-ho′-cha), the Minnitarees, “People from Afar” (E-năt′-zä), the
Cherokees, “Great People” (Tsä-lo′-kee), the Shawnees, “Southerners”
(Sä-wan-wä-kee′), the Mohegans, “Sea-side People” (Mo-he-kun-e-uk),
the Slave Lake Indians, “People of the Lowlands” (A-cha′-o-tin-ne).
Among the Village Indians of Mexico, the Sochimilcos styled themselves
“Nation of the Seeds of Flowers,” the Chalcans, “People of Mouths,”
the Tepanecans, “People of the Bridge,” the Tezcucans or Culhuas, “A
Crooked People,” and the Tlascalans, “Men of Bread.”[82] When European
colonization began in the northern part of America, the names of Indian
tribes were obtained, not usually from the tribe direct, but from other
tribes who had bestowed names upon them different from their own. As a
consequence, a number of tribes are now known in history under names
not recognized by themselves.

II. _The exclusive possession of a dialect._

Tribe and dialect are substantially co-extensive, but there are
exceptions growing out of special circumstances. Thus, the twelve
Dakota bands are now properly tribes, because they are distinct in
interests and in organization; but they were forced into premature
separation by the advance of Americans upon their original area which
forced them upon the plains. They had remained in such intimate
connection previously that but one new dialect had commenced forming,
the _Tecton_, on the Missouri; the _Isauntie_ on the Mississippi being
the original speech. A few years ago the Cherokees numbered twenty-six
thousand, the largest number of Indians ever found within the limits
of the United States speaking the same dialect. But in the mountain
districts of Georgia a slight divergence of speech had occurred, though
not sufficient to be distinguished as a dialect. There are a few
other similar cases, but they do not break the general rule during
the aboriginal period which made tribe and dialect co-extensive. The
Ojibwas, who are still in the main non-horticultural, now number about
fifteen thousand, and speak the same dialect; and the Dakota tribes
collectively about twenty-five thousand who speak two very closely
related dialects, as stated. These several tribes are exceptionally
large. The tribes within the United States and British America would
yield, on an average, less than two thousand persons to a tribe.

III. _The right of investing sachems and chiefs elected by the gentes._

Among the Iroquois the person elected could not become a chief
until his investiture by a council of chiefs. As the chiefs of the
gentes composed the council of the tribe, with power over common
interests, there was a manifest propriety in reserving to the tribal
council the function of investing persons with office. But after the
confederacy was formed, the power of “raising up” sachems and chiefs
was transferred from the council of the tribe to the council of the
confederacy. With respect to the tribes generally, the accessible
information is insufficient to explain their usages in relation to
the mode of investiture. It is one of the numerous subjects requiring
further investigation before the social system of the Indian tribes
can be fully explained. The office of sachem and chief was universally
elective among the tribes north of Mexico; with sufficient evidence, as
to other parts of the continent, to leave no doubt of the universality
of the rule.

Among the Delawares each gens had one sachem, (Sä-ke′-mä), whose
office was hereditary in the gens, besides two common chiefs, and two
war-chiefs—making fifteen in three gentes—who composed the council of
the tribe. Among the Ojibwas, the members of some one gens usually
predominated at each settlement. Each gens had a sachem, whose office
was hereditary in the gens, and several common chiefs. Where a large
number of persons of the same gens lived in one locality they would
be found similarly organized. There was no prescribed limit to the
number of chiefs. A body of usages, which have never been collected,
undoubtedly existed in the several Indian tribes respecting the
election and investiture of sachems and chiefs. A knowledge of them
would be valuable. An explanation of the Iroquois method of “raising
up” sachems and chiefs will be given in the next chapter.

IV. _The right to depose these sachems and chiefs._

This right rested primarily with the gens to which the sachem and chief
belonged. But the council of the tribe possessed the same power, and
could proceed independently of the gens, and even in opposition to its
wishes. In the Status of savagery, and in the Lower and also in the
Middle Status of barbarism, office was bestowed for life, or during
good behavior. Mankind had not learned to limit an elective office
for a term of years. The right to depose, therefore, became the more
essential for the maintenance of the principle of self-government. This
right was a perpetual assertion of the sovereignty of the gens and
also of the tribe; a sovereignty feebly understood, but nevertheless a
reality.

V. _The possession of a religious faith and worship._

After the fashion of barbarians the American Indians were a religious
people. The tribes generally held religious festivals at particular
seasons of the year, which were observed with forms of worship, dances
and games. The Medicine Lodge, in many tribes, was the centre of these
observances. It was customary to announce the holding of a Medicine
Lodge weeks and months in advance to awaken a general interest in its
ceremonies. The religious system of the aborigines is another of the
subjects which has been but partially investigated. It is rich in
materials for the future student. The experience of these tribes in
developing their religious beliefs and mode of worship is a part of the
experience of mankind; and the facts will hold an important place in
the science of comparative religion.

Their system was more or less vague and indefinite, and loaded with
crude superstitions. Element worship can be traced among the principal
tribes, with a tendency to polytheism in the advanced tribes. The
Iroquois, for example, recognized a Great, and an Evil Spirit, and a
multitude of inferior spiritual beings, the immortality of the soul,
and a future state. Their conception of the Great Spirit assigned
to him a human form; which was equally true of the Evil Spirit, of
_He′-no_, the Spirit of Thunder, of _Gă′-oh_, the Spirit of the
Winds, and of the _Three Sisters_, the Spirit of Maize, the Spirit
of the Bean, and the Spirit of the Squash. The latter were styled,
collectively, “Our Life,” and also “Our Supporters.” Beside these
were the spirits of the several kinds of trees and plants, and of
the running streams. The existence and attributes of these numerous
spiritual beings were but feebly imagined. Among the tribes in the
Lower Status of barbarism idolatry was unknown.[83] The Aztecs had
personal gods, with idols to represent them, and a temple worship. If
the particulars of their religious system were accurately known, its
growth out of the common beliefs of the Indian tribes would probably be
made apparent.

Dancing was a form of worship among the American aborigines, and formed
a part of the ceremonies at all religious festivals. In no part of
the earth, among barbarians, has the dance received a more studied
development. Every tribe has from ten to thirty set dances; each of
which has its own name, songs, musical instruments, steps, plan and
costume for persons. Some of them, as the war-dance, were common to all
the tribes. Particular dances are special property, belonging either to
a gens, or to a society organized for its maintenance, into which new
members were from time to time initiated. The dances of the Dakotas,
the Crees, the Ojibwas, the Iroquois, and of the Pueblo Indians of New
Mexico, are the same in general character, in step, plan, and music;
and the same is true of the dances of the Aztecs so far as they are
accurately known. It is one system throughout the Indian tribes, and
bears a direct relation to their system of faith and worship.

VI. _A supreme government through a council of chiefs._

The council had a natural foundation in the gentes of whose chiefs
it was composed. It met a necessary want, and was certain to remain
as long as gentile society endured. As the gens was represented by
its chiefs, so the tribe was represented by a council composed of the
chiefs of the gentes. It was a permanent feature of the social system,
holding the ultimate authority over the tribe. Called together under
circumstances known to all, held in the midst of the people, and open
to their orators, it was certain to act under popular influence.
Although oligarchical in form, the government was a representative
democracy; the representative being elected for life, but subject
to deposition. The brotherhood of the members of each gens, and the
elective principle with respect to office, were the germ and the basis
of the democratic principle. Imperfectly developed, as other great
principles were in this early stage of advancement, democracy can boast
a very ancient pedigree in the tribes of mankind.

It devolved upon the council to guard and protect the common interests
of the tribe. Upon the intelligence and courage of the people, and
upon the wisdom and foresight of the council, the prosperity and
the existence of the tribe depended. Questions and exigencies were
arising, through their incessant warfare with other tribes, which
required the exercise of all these qualities to meet and manage.
It was unavoidable, therefore, that the popular element should be
commanding in its influence. As a general rule the council was open to
any private individual who desired to address it on a public question.
Even the women were allowed to express their wishes and opinions
through an orator of their own selection. But the decision was made by
the council. Unanimity was a fundamental law of its action among the
Iroquois; but whether this usage was general I am unable to state.

Military operations were usually left to the action of the voluntary
principle. Theoretically, each tribe was at war with every other tribe
with which it had not formed a treaty of peace. Any person was at
liberty to organize a war-party and conduct an expedition wherever he
pleased. He announced his project by giving a war-dance and inviting
volunteers. This method furnished a practical test of the popularity
of the undertaking. If he succeeded in forming a company, which would
consist of such persons as joined him in the dance, they departed
immediately, while enthusiasm was at its height. When a tribe was
menaced with an attack, war-parties were formed to meet it in much the
same manner. Where forces thus raised were united in one body, each was
under its own war-captain, and their joint movements were determined
by a council of these captains. If there was among them a war-chief of
established reputation he would naturally become their leader. These
statements relate to tribes in the Lower Status of barbarism. The
Aztecs and Tlascalans went out by phratries, each subdivision under its
own captain, and distinguished by costumes and banners.

Indian tribes, and even confederacies, were weak organizations for
military operations. That of the Iroquois, and that of the Aztecs, were
the most remarkable for aggressive purposes. Among the tribes in the
Lower Status of barbarism, including the Iroquois, the most destructive
work was performed by inconsiderable war-parties, which were constantly
forming and making expeditions into distant regions. Their supply of
food consisted of parched corn reduced to flour, carried in a pouch
attached to the belt of each warrior, with such fish and game as the
route supplied. The going out of these war-parties, and their public
reception on their return, were among the prominent events in Indian
life. The sanction of the council for these expeditions was not sought,
neither was it necessary.

The council of the tribe had power to declare war and make peace, to
send and receive embassies, and to make alliances. It exercised all the
powers needful in a government so simple and limited in its affairs.
Intercourse between independent tribes was conducted by delegations of
wise-men and chiefs. When such a delegation was expected by any tribe,
a council was convened for its reception, and for the transaction of
its business.

VII. _A head-chief of the tribe in some instances._

In some Indian tribes one of the sachems was recognized as its
head-chief; and as superior in rank to his associates. A need existed,
to some extent, for an official head of the tribe to represent it
when the council was not in session; but the duties and powers of
the office were slight. Although the council was supreme in authority
it was rarely in session, and questions might arise demanding the
provisional action of some one authorized to represent the tribe,
subject to the ratification of his acts by the council. This was
the only basis, so far as the writer is aware, for the office of
head-chief. It existed in a number of tribes, but in a form of
authority so feeble as to fall below the conception of an executive
magistrate. In the language of some of the early writers they have been
designated as kings, which is simply a caricature. The Indian tribes
had not advanced far enough in a knowledge of government to develop the
idea of a chief executive magistrate. The Iroquois tribe recognized
no head-chief, and the confederacy no executive officer. The elective
tenure of the office of chief, and the liability of the person to
deposition, settle the character of the office.

A council of Indian chiefs is of little importance by itself; but as
the germ of the modern parliament, congress, and legislature, it has an
important bearing in the history of mankind.

The growth of the idea of government commenced with the organization
into gentes in savagery. It reveals three great stages of progressive
development between its commencement and the institution of political
society after civilization had been attained. The first stage was the
government of a tribe by a council of chiefs elected by the gentes. It
may be called a government of _one power_; namely, _the council_. It
prevailed generally among tribes in the Lower Status of barbarism. The
second stage was a government co-ordinated between a council of chiefs,
and a general military commander; one representing the civil, and the
other the military functions. This second form began to manifest itself
in the Lower Status of barbarism, after confederacies were formed, and
it became definite in the Middle Status. The office of general, or
principal military commander, was the germ of that of a chief executive
magistrate, the king, the emperor, and the president. It may be called
a government of _two powers_, namely, _the council of chiefs_, and _the
general_. The third stage was the government of a people or nation by a
council of chiefs, an assembly of the people, and a general military
commander. It appeared among the tribes who had attained to the Upper
Status of barbarism; such, for example, as the Homeric Greeks, and the
Italian tribes of the period of Romulus. A large increase in the number
of people united in a nation, their establishment in walled cities, and
the creation of wealth in lands and in flocks and herds, brought in
the assembly of the people as an instrument of government. The council
of chiefs, which still remained, found it necessary, no doubt through
popular constraint, to submit the most important public measures to an
assembly of the people for acceptance or rejection; whence the popular
assembly. This assembly did not originate measures. It was its function
to adopt or reject, and its action was final. From its first appearance
it became a permanent power in the government. The council no longer
passed important public measures, but became a pre-considering council,
with power to originate and mature public acts, to which the assembly
alone could give validity. It may be called a government of _three
powers_; namely, _the pre-considering council_, the _assembly of the
people_, and _the general_. This remained until the institution of
political society, when, for example, among the Athenians, the council
of chiefs became the senate, and the assembly of the people the
ecclesia or popular assembly. The same organizations have come down
to modern times in the two houses of parliament, of congress, and of
legislatures. In like manner the office of general military commander,
as before stated, was the germ of the office of the modern chief
executive magistrate.

Recurring to the tribe, it was limited in the numbers of the people,
feeble in strength, and poor in resources; but yet a completely
organized society. It illustrates the condition of mankind in the
Lower Status of barbarism. In the Middle Status there was a sensible
increase of numbers in a tribe, and an improved condition; but with
a continuance of gentile society without essential change. Political
society was still impossible from want of advancement. The gentes
organized into tribes remained as before; but confederacies must have
been more frequent. In some areas, as in the Valley of Mexico, larger
numbers were developed under a common government, with improvements in
the arts of life; but no evidence exists of the overthrow among them
of gentile society and the substitution of political. It is impossible
to found a political society or a state upon gentes. A state must rest
upon territory and not upon persons, upon the township as the unit
of a political system, and not upon the gens which is the unit of a
social system. It required time and a vast experience, beyond that of
the American Indian tribes, as a preparation for such a fundamental
change of systems. It also required men of the mental stature of the
Greeks and Romans, and with the experience derived from a long chain of
ancestors to devise and gradually introduce that new plan of government
under which civilized nations are living at the present time.

Following the ascending organic series, we are next to consider the
confederacy of tribes, in which the gentes, phratries and tribes will
be seen in new relations. The remarkable adaptation of the gentile
organization to the condition and wants of mankind, while in a
barbarous state, will thereby be further illustrated.



CHAPTER V.

THE IROQUOIS CONFEDERACY.

    CONFEDERACIES NATURAL GROWTHS.—FOUNDED UPON COMMON GENTES,
    AND A COMMON LANGUAGE.—THE IROQUOIS TRIBES.—THEIR SETTLEMENT
    IN NEW YORK.—FORMATION OF THE CONFEDERACY.—ITS STRUCTURE
    AND PRINCIPLES.—FIFTY SACHEMSHIPS CREATED.—MADE HEREDITARY
    IN CERTAIN GENTES.—NUMBER ASSIGNED TO EACH TRIBE.—THESE
    SACHEMS FORMED THE COUNCIL OF THE CONFEDERACY.—THE CIVIL
    COUNCIL.—ITS MODE OF TRANSACTING BUSINESS.—UNANIMITY NECESSARY
    TO ITS ACTION.—THE MOURNING COUNCIL.—MODE OF RAISING UP
    SACHEMS.—GENERAL MILITARY COMMANDERS.—THIS OFFICE THE GERM OF
    THAT OF A CHIEF EXECUTIVE MAGISTRATE.—INTELLECTUAL CAPACITY OF
    THE IROQUOIS.


A tendency to confederate for mutual defense would very naturally
exist among kindred and contiguous tribes. When the advantages of a
union had been appreciated by actual experience the organization, at
first a league, would gradually cement into a federal unity. The state
of perpetual warfare in which they lived would quicken this natural
tendency into action among such tribes as were sufficiently advanced
in intelligence and in the arts of life to perceive its benefits. It
would be simply a growth from a lower into a higher organization by an
extension of the principle which united the gentes in a tribe.

As might have been expected, several confederacies existed in different
parts of North America when discovered, some of which were quite
remarkable in plan and structure. Among the number may be mentioned the
Iroquois Confederacy of five independent tribes, the Creek Confederacy
of six, the Otawa Confederacy of three, the Dakota League of the
“Seven Council-Fires,” the Moqui Confederacy in New Mexico of Seven
Pueblos, and the Aztec Confederacy of three tribes in the Valley of
Mexico. It is probable that the Village Indians in other parts of
Mexico, in Central and in South America, were quite generally organized
in confederacies consisting of two or more kindred tribes. Progress
necessarily took this direction from the nature of their institutions,
and from the law governing their development. Nevertheless, the
formation of a confederacy out of such materials, and with such
unstable geographical relations, was a difficult undertaking. It was
easiest of achievement by the Village Indians from the nearness to each
other of their pueblos, and from the smallness of their areas; but it
was accomplished in occasional instances by tribes in the Lower Status
of barbarism, and notably by the Iroquois. Wherever a confederacy was
formed it would of itself evince the superior intelligence of the
people.

The two highest examples of Indian confederacies in North America
were those of the Iroquois and of the Aztecs. From their acknowledged
superiority as military powers, and from their geographical positions,
these confederacies, in both cases, produced remarkable results. Our
knowledge of the structure and principles of the former is definite and
complete, while of the latter it is far from satisfactory. The Aztec
confederacy has been handled in such a manner historically as to leave
it doubtful whether it was simply a league of three kindred tribes,
offensive and defensive, or a systematic confederacy like that of the
Iroquois. That which is true of the latter was probably in a general
sense true of the former, so that a knowledge of one will tend to
elucidate the other.

The conditions under which confederacies spring into being and the
principles on which they are formed are remarkably simple. They grow
naturally, with time, out of pre-existing elements. Where one tribe had
divided into several and these subdivisions occupied independent but
contiguous territories, the confederacy re-integrated them in a higher
organization, on the basis of the common gentes they possessed, and
of the affiliated dialects they spoke. The sentiment of kin embodied
in the gens, the common lineage of the gentes, and their dialects
still mutually intelligible, yielded the material elements for a
confederation. The confederacy, therefore, had the gentes for its
basis and centre, and stock language for its circumference. No one has
been found that reached beyond the bounds of the dialects of a common
language. If this natural barrier had been crossed it would have forced
heterogeneous elements into the organization. Cases have occurred where
the remains of a tribe, not cognate in speech, as the Natchez,[84] have
been admitted into an existing confederacy; but this exception would
not invalidate the general proposition. It was impossible for an Indian
power to arise upon the American continent through a confederacy of
tribes organized in gentes, and advance to a general supremacy unless
their numbers were developed from their own stock. The multitude of
stock languages is a standing explanation of the failure. There was no
possible way of becoming connected on equal terms with a confederacy
excepting through membership in a gens and tribe, and a common speech.

It may here be remarked, parenthetically, that it was impossible in the
Lower, in the Middle, or in the Upper Status of barbarism for a kingdom
to arise by natural growth in any part of the earth under gentile
institutions. I venture to make this suggestion at this early stage of
the discussion in order to call attention more closely to the structure
and principles of ancient society, as organized in gentes, phratries
and tribes. Monarchy is incompatible with gentilism. It belongs to the
later period of civilization. Despotisms appeared in some instances
among the Grecian tribes in the Upper Status of barbarism; but they
were founded upon usurpation, were considered illegitimate by the
people, and were, in fact, alien to the ideas of gentile society. The
Grecian tyrannies were despotisms founded upon usurpation, and were
the germ out of which the later kingdoms arose; while the so-called
kingdoms of the heroic age were military democracies, and nothing more.

The Iroquois have furnished an excellent illustration of the manner in
which a confederacy is formed by natural growth assisted by skillful
legislation. Originally emigrants from beyond the Mississippi, and
probably a branch of the Dakota stock, they first made their way to the
valley of the St. Lawrence and settled themselves near Montreal. Forced
to leave this region by the hostility of surrounding tribes, they
sought the central region of New York. Coasting the eastern shore of
Lake Ontario in canoes, for their numbers were small, they made their
first settlement at the mouth of the Oswego river, where, according to
their traditions, they remained for a long period of time. They were
then in at least three distinct tribes, the Mohawks, the Onondagas, and
the Senecas. One tribe subsequently established themselves at the head
of the Canandaigua lake and became the Senecas. Another tribe occupied
the Onondaga Valley and became the Onondagas. The third passed eastward
and settled first at Oneida near the site of Utica, from which place
the main portion removed to the Mohawk Valley and became the Mohawks.
Those who remained became the Oneidas. A portion of the Onondagas or
Senecas settled along the eastern shore of the Cayuga lake and became
the Cayugas. New York, before its occupation by the Iroquois, seems
to have been a part of the area of the Algonkin tribes. According to
Iroquois traditions they displaced its anterior inhabitants as they
gradually extended their settlements eastward to the Hudson, and
westward to the Genesee. Their traditions further declare that a long
period of time elapsed after their settlement in New York before the
confederacy was formed, during which they made common cause against
their enemies and thus experienced the advantages of the federal
principle both for aggression and defense. They resided in villages,
which were usually surrounded with stockades, and subsisted upon fish
and game, and the products of a limited horticulture. In numbers
they did not at any time exceed 20,000 souls, if they ever reached
that number. Precarious subsistence and incessant warfare repressed
numbers in all the aboriginal tribes, including the Village Indians
as well. The Iroquois were enshrouded in the great forests, which
then overspread New York, against which they had no power to contend.

They were first discovered A. D. 1608. About 1675, they attained
their culminating point when their dominion reached over an area
remarkably large, covering the greater parts of New York, Pennsylvania
and Ohio,[85] and portions of Canada north of Lake Ontario. At the
time of their discovery they were the highest representatives of the
Red Race north of New Mexico in intelligence and advancement, though
perhaps inferior to some of the Gulf tribes in the arts of life. In
the extent and quality of their mental endowments they must be ranked
among the highest Indians in America. Although they have declined in
numbers there are still four thousand Iroquois in New York, about a
thousand in Canada, and near that number in the West; thus illustrating
the efficiency as well as persistency of the arts of barbarous life in
sustaining existence. It is now said that they are slowly increasing.

When the confederacy was formed, about A. D. 1400-1450,[86] the
conditions previously named were present. The Iroquois was in five
independent tribes, occupied territories contiguous to each other, and
spoke dialects of the same language which were mutually intelligible.
Beside these facts certain gentes were common in the several tribes as
has been shown. In their relations to each other, as separated parts
of the same gens, these common gentes afforded a natural and enduring
basis for a confederacy. With these elements existing, the formation of
a confederacy became a question of intelligence and skill. Other tribes
in large numbers were standing in precisely the same relations in
different parts of the continent without confederating. The fact that
the Iroquois tribes accomplished the work affords evidence of their
superior capacity. Moreover, as the confederacy was the ultimate stage
of organization among the American aborigines its existence would be
expected in the most intelligent tribes only.

It is affirmed by the Iroquois that the confederacy was formed by a
council of wise-men and chiefs of the five tribes which met for that
purpose on the north shore of Onondaga lake, near the site of Syracuse;
and that before its session was concluded the organization was
perfected, and set in immediate operation. At their periodical councils
for raising up sachems they still explain its origin as the result of
one protracted effort of legislation. It was probably a consequence of
a previous alliance for mutual defense, the advantages of which they
had perceived and which they sought to render permanent.

The origin of the plan is ascribed to a mythical, or, at least,
traditionary person, _Hä-yo-went′-hä_, the Hiawatha of Longfellow’s
celebrated poem, who was present at this council and the central
person in its management. In his communications with the council he
used a wise-man of the Onondagas, _Da-gä-no-we′-dä_, as an interpreter
and speaker to expound the structure and principles of the proposed
confederacy. The same tradition further declares that when the work
was accomplished _Hä-yo-went′-hä_ miraculously disappeared in a white
canoe, which arose with him in the air and bore him out of their sight.
Other prodigies, according to this tradition, attended and signalized
the formation of the confederacy, which is still celebrated among them
as a masterpiece of Indian wisdom. Such in truth it was; and it will
remain in history as a monument of their genius in developing gentile
institutions. It will also be remembered as an illustration of what
tribes of mankind have been able to accomplish in the art of government
while in the Lower Status of barbarism, and under the disadvantages
this condition implies.

Which of the two persons was the founder of the confederacy it is
difficult to determine. The silent _Hä-yo-went′-hä_ was, not unlikely,
a real person of Iroquois lineage;[87] but tradition has enveloped his
character so completely in the supernatural that he loses his place
among them as one of their number. If Hiawatha were a real person,
_Da-gä-no-we′-dä_ must hold a subordinate place; but, if a mythical
person invoked for the occasion, then to the latter belongs the credit
of planning the confederacy.

The Iroquois affirm that the confederacy as formed by this council,
with its powers, functions and mode of administration, has come down
to them through many generations to the present time with scarcely
a change in its internal organization. When the Tuscaroras were
subsequently admitted, their sachems were allowed by courtesy to sit as
equals in the general council, but the original number of sachems was
not increased, and in strictness those of the Tuscaroras formed no part
of the ruling body.

The general features of the Iroquois Confederacy may be summarized in
the following propositions:

I. The confederacy was a union of Five Tribes, composed of common
gentes, under one government on the basis of equality; each
Tribe remaining independent in all matters pertaining to local
self-government.

II. It created a General Council of Sachems, who were limited in
number, equal in rank and authority, and invested with supreme powers
over all matters pertaining to the Confederacy.

III. Fifty Sachemships were created and named in perpetuity in certain
gentes of the several Tribes; with power in these gentes to fill
vacancies, as often as they occurred, by election from among their
respective members, and with the further power to depose from office
for cause; but the right to invest these Sachems with office was
reserved to the General Council.

IV. The Sachems of the Confederacy were also Sachems in their
respective Tribes, and with the Chiefs of these Tribes formed the
Council of each, which was supreme over all matters pertaining to the
Tribe exclusively.

V. Unanimity in the Council of the Confederacy was made essential to
every public act.

VI. In the General Council the Sachems voted by Tribes, which gave to
each Tribe a negative upon the others.

VII. The Council of each Tribe had power to convene the General
Council; but the latter had no power to convene itself.

VIII. The General Council was open to the orators of the people for the
discussion of public questions; but the Council alone decided.

IX. The Confederacy had no chief Executive Magistrate, or official
head.

X. Experiencing the necessity for a General Military Commander they
created the office in a dual form, that one might neutralize the other.
The two principal War-chiefs created were made equal in powers.

These several propositions will be considered and illustrated, but
without following the precise form or order in which they are stated.

At the institution of the confederacy fifty permanent sachemships
were created and named, and made perpetual in the gentes to which
they were assigned. With the exception of two, which were filled but
once, they have been held by as many different persons in succession
as generations have passed away between that time and the present.
The name of each sachemship is also the personal name of each sachem
while he holds the office, each one in succession taking the name of
his predecessor. These sachems, when in session, formed the council
of the confederacy in which the legislative, executive, and judicial
powers were vested, although such a discrimination of functions had not
come to be made. To secure order in the succession, the several gentes
in which these offices were made hereditary were empowered to elect
successors from among their respective members when vacancies occurred,
as elsewhere explained. As a further measure of protection to their own
body each sachem, after his election and its confirmation, was invested
with his office by a council of the confederacy. When thus installed
his name was “taken away” and that of the sachemship was bestowed upon
him. By this name he was afterwards known among them. They were all
upon equality in rank, authority, and privileges.

These sachemships were distributed unequally among the five tribes; but
without giving to either a preponderance of power; and unequally among
the gentes of the last three tribes. The Mohawks had nine sachems, the
Oneidas nine, the Onondagas fourteen, the Cayugas ten, and the Senecas
eight. This was the number at first, and it has remained the number
to the present time. A table of these sachemships is subjoined, with
their names in the Seneca dialect, and their arrangement in classes to
facilitate the attainment of unanimity in council. In foot-notes will
be found the signification of these names, and the gentes to which they
belonged.

Table of sachemships of the Iroquois, founded at the institution of the
Confederacy; with the names which have been borne by their sachems in
succession, from its formation to the present time:

_Mohawks._

    I. 1. Da-gä-e′-o-gă.[88]  2. Hä-yo-went′-hä.[89]
       3. Da-gä-no-we′-dä.[90]
   II. 4. So-ä-e-wä′-ah.[91] 5. Da-yo′-ho-go.[92] 6. O-ä-ä′-go-wä.[93]
  III. 7. Da-an-no-gä′-e-neh.[94]  8. Sä-da′-gä-e-wä-deh.[95]
       9. Häs-dä-weh′-se-ont-hä.[96]

_Oneidas._

    I. 1. Ho-däs′-hä-teh.[97]  2. Ga-no-gweh′-yo-do.[98]
       3. Da-yo-hä′-gwen-da.[99]
   II. 4. So-no-sase′.[100]  5. To-no-ä-gă′-o.[101]
       6. Hä-de-ä-dun-nent′-hä.[102]
  III. 7. Da-wä-dä′-o-dä-yo.[103]  8. Gä-ne-ä-dus′-ha-yeh.[104]
       9. Ho-wus′-hä-da-o.[105]

_Onondagas._

    I. 1. To-do-dä′-ho.[106] 2. To-nes′-sa-ah. 3. Da-ät′-ga-dose.[107]
   II. 4. Gä-neä-dä′-je-wake.[108] 5. Ah-wä′-ga-yat.[109]
       6. Da-ä-yat′-gwä-e.
  III. 7. Ho-no-we-nă′-to.[110]
   IV. 8. Gä-wă-nă′-san-do.[111] 9. Hä-e′-ho.[112]
      10. Ho-yo-ne-ä′-ne.[113] 11. Sa-dä′-kwä-seh.[114]
    V. 12. Sä-go-ga-hä′.[115] 13. Ho-sa-hä′-ho.[116]
       14. Skä-no′-wun-de.[117]

_Cayugas._

    I. 1. Da-gä′-ă-yo.[118] 2. Da-je-no′-dä-weh-o.[119]
            3. Gä-dä′-gwä-sa.[120] 4. So-yo-wasé.[121]
            5. Hä-de-äs′-yo-no.[122]
   II. 6. Da-yo-o-yo′-go.[123] 7. Jote-ho-weh′-ko.[124]
            8. De-ä-wate′-ho.[125]
  III. 9. To-dä-e-ho′.[126] 10. Des-gä′-heh.[127]

_Senecas._

    I. 1. Ga-ne-o-di′-yo.[128] 2. Sä-dä-gä′-o-yase.[129]
   II. 3. Gä-no-gi′-e.[130] 4. Sä-geh′-jo-wä.[131]
  III. 5. Sä-de-a-no′-wus.[132] 6. Nis-hä-ne-a′-nent.[133]
   IV. 7. Gä-no-go-e-dä′-we.[134] 8. Do-ne-ho-gä′-weh.[135]

Two of these sachemships have been filled but once since their
creation. _Hä-yo-went′-hä_ and _Da-gä-no-we′-da_ consented to take the
office among the Mohawk sachems, and to leave their names in the list
upon condition that after their demise the two should remain thereafter
vacant. They were installed upon these terms, and the stipulation has
been observed to the present day. At all councils for the investiture
of sachems their names are still called with the others as a tribute of
respect to their memory. The general council, therefore, consisted of
but forty-eight members.

Each sachem had an assistant sachem, who was elected by the gens of
his principal from among its members, and who was installed with the
same forms and ceremonies. He was styled an “aid.” It was his duty to
stand behind his superior on all occasions of ceremony, to act as his
messenger, and in general to be subject to his directions. It gave to
the aid the office of chief, and rendered probable his election as the
successor of his principal after the decease of the latter. In their
figurative language these aids of the sachems were styled “Braces in
the Long House,” which symbolized the confederacy.

The names bestowed upon the original sachems became the names of their
respective successors in perpetuity. For example, upon the demise of
_Gä-ne-o-di′-yo_, one of the eight Seneca sachems, his successor would
be elected by the Turtle gens in which this sachemship was hereditary,
and when raised up by the general council he would receive this name,
in place of his own, as a part of the ceremony. On several different
occasions I have attended their councils for raising up sachems both
at the Onondaga and Seneca reservations, and witnessed the ceremonies
herein referred to. Although but a shadow of the old confederacy now
remains, it is fully organized with its complement of sachems and aids,
with the exception of the Mohawk tribe which removed to Canada about
1775. Whenever vacancies occur their places are filled, and a general
council is convened to install the new sachems and their aids. The
present Iroquois are also perfectly familiar with the structure and
principles of the ancient confederacy.

For all purposes of tribal government the five tribes were independent
of each other. Their territories were separated by fixed boundary
lines, and their tribal interests were distinct. The eight Seneca
sachems, in conjunction with the other Seneca chiefs, formed the
council of the tribe by which its affairs were administered, leaving
to each of the other tribes the same control over their separate
interests. As an organization the tribe was neither weakened nor
impaired by the confederate compact. Each was in vigorous life within
its appropriate sphere, presenting some analogy to our own states
within an embracing republic. It is worthy of remembrance that the
Iroquois commended to our forefathers a union of the colonies similar
to their own as early as 1755. They saw in the common interests
and common speech of the several colonies the elements for a
confederation, which was as far as their vision was able to penetrate.

The tribes occupied positions of entire equality in the confederacy,
in rights, privileges and obligations. Such special immunities as
were granted to one or another indicate no intention to establish an
unequal compact, or to concede unequal privileges. There were organic
provisions apparently investing particular tribes with superior power;
as, for example, the Onondagas were allowed fourteen sachems and
the Senecas but eight; and a larger body of sachems would naturally
exercise a stronger influence in council than a smaller. But in this
case it gave no additional power, because the sachems of each tribe had
an equal voice in forming a decision, and a negative upon the others.
When in council they agreed by tribes, and unanimity in opinion was
essential to every public act. The Onondagas were made “Keepers of the
Wampum,” and “Keepers of the Council Brand,” the Mohawks, “Receivers of
Tribute” from subjugated tribes, and the Senecas “Keepers of the Door”
of the Long House. These and some other similar provisions were made
for the common advantage.

The cohesive principle of the confederacy did not spring exclusively
from the benefits of an alliance for mutual protection, but had a
deeper foundation in the bond of kin. The confederacy rested upon the
tribes ostensibly, but primarily upon common gentes. All the members
of the same gens, whether Mohawks, Oneidas, Onondagas, Cayugas, or
Senecas, were brothers and sisters to each other in virtue of their
descent from the same common ancestor; and they recognized each other
as such with the fullest cordiality. When they met the first inquiry
was the name of each other’s gens, and next the immediate pedigree of
their respective sachems; after which they were usually able to find,
under their peculiar system of consanguinity,[136] the relationship
in which they stood to each other. Three of the gentes, namely, the
Wolf, Bear and Turtle, were common to the five tribes; these and
three others were common to three tribes. In effect the Wolf gens,
through the division of an original tribe into five, was now in five
divisions, one of which was in each tribe. It was the same with the
Bear and the Turtle gentes. The Deer, Snipe and Hawk gentes were common
to the Senecas, Cayugas and Onondagas. Between the separated parts of
each gens, although its members spoke different dialects of the same
language, there existed a fraternal connection which linked the nations
together with indissoluble bonds. When the Mohawk of the Wolf gens
recognized an Oneida, Onondaga, Cayuga or Seneca of the same gens as a
brother, and when the members of the other divided gentes did the same,
the relationship was not ideal, but a fact founded upon consanguinity,
and upon faith in an assured lineage older than their dialects and
coeval with their unity as one people. In the estimation of an Iroquois
every member of his gens in whatever tribe was as certainly a kinsman
as an own brother. This cross-relationship between persons of the same
gens in the different tribes is still preserved and recognized among
them in all its original force. It explains the tenacity with which the
fragments of the old confederacy still cling together. If either of the
five tribes had seceded from the confederacy it would have severed the
bond of kin, although this would have been felt but slightly. But had
they fallen into collision it would have turned the gens of the Wolf
against their gentile kindred, Bear against Bear, in a word brother
against brother. The history of the Iroquois demonstrates the reality
as well as persistency of the bond of kin, and the fidelity with which
it was respected. During the long period through which the confederacy
endured, they never fell into anarchy, nor ruptured the organization.

The “Long House” (_Ho-de′-no-sote_) was made the symbol of the
confederacy; and they styled themselves the “People of the Long House”
(_Ho-de′-no-sau-nee_). This was the name, and the only name, with which
they distinguished themselves. The confederacy produced a gentile
society more complex than that of a single tribe, but it was still
distinctively a gentile society. It was, however, a stage of progress
in the direction of a nation, for nationality is reached under gentile
institutions. Coalescence is the last stage in this process. The four
Athenian tribes coalesced in Attica into a nation by the intermingling
of the tribes in the same area, and by the gradual disappearance of
geographical lines between them. The tribal names and organizations
remained in full vitality as before, but without the basis of an
independent territory. When political society was instituted on the
basis of the deme or township, and all the residents of the deme became
a body politic, irrespective of their gens or tribe, the coalescence
became complete.

The coalescence of the Latin and Sabine gentes into the Roman people
and nation was a result of the same processes. In all alike the gens,
phratry and tribe were the first three stages of organization. The
confederacy followed as the fourth. But it does not appear, either
among the Grecian or Latin tribes in the Later Period of barbarism,
that it became more than a loose league for offensive and defensive
purposes. Of the nature and details of organization of the Grecian and
Latin confederacies our knowledge is limited and imperfect, because
the facts are buried in the obscurity of the traditionary period. The
process of coalescence arises later than the confederacy in gentile
society; but it was a necessary as well as vital stage of progress by
means of which the nation, the state, and political society were at
last attained. Among the Iroquois tribes it had not manifested itself.

The valley of Onondaga, as the seat of the central tribe, and the place
where the Council Brand was supposed to be perpetually burning, was the
usual though not the exclusive place for holding the councils of the
confederacy. In ancient times it was summoned to convene in the autumn
of each year; but public exigencies often rendered its meetings more
frequent. Each tribe had power to summon the council, and to appoint
the time and place of meeting at the council-house of either tribe,
when circumstances rendered a change from the usual place at Onondaga
desirable. But the council had no power to convene itself.

Originally the principal object of the council was to raise up sachems
to fill vacancies in the ranks of the ruling body occasioned by death
or deposition; but it transacted all other business which concerned
the common welfare. In course of time, as they multiplied in numbers
and their intercourse with foreign tribes became more extended, the
council fell into three distinct kinds, which may be distinguished as
Civil, Mourning and Religious. The first declared war and made peace,
sent and received embassies, entered into treaties with foreign tribes,
regulated the affairs of subjugated tribes, and took all needful
measures to promote the general welfare. The second raised up sachems
and invested them with office. It received the name of Mourning Council
because the first of its ceremonies was the lament for the deceased
ruler whose vacant place was to be filled. The third was held for the
observance of a general religious festival. It was made an occasion
for the confederated tribes to unite under the auspices of a general
council in the observance of common religious rites. But as the
Mourning Council was attended with many of the same ceremonies it came,
in time, to answer for both. It is now the only council they hold, as
the civil powers of the confederacy terminated with the supremacy over
them of the state.

Invoking the patience of the reader, it is necessary to enter into some
details with respect to the mode of transacting business at the Civil
and Mourning Councils. In no other way can the archaic condition of
society under gentile institutions be so readily illustrated.

If an overture was made to the confederacy by a foreign tribe, it might
be done through either of the five tribes. It was the prerogative of
the council of the tribe addressed to determine whether the affair
was of sufficient importance to require a council of the confederacy.
After reaching an affirmative conclusion, a herald was sent to the
nearest tribes in position, on the east and on the west, with a belt of
wampum, which contained a message to the effect that a civil council
(_Ho-de-os′-seh_) would meet at such a place and time, and for such
an object, each of which was specified. It was the duty of the tribe
receiving the message to forward it to the tribe next in position,
until the notification was made complete.[137] No council ever
assembled unless it was summoned under the prescribed forms.

When the sachems met in council, at the time and place appointed,
and the usual reception ceremony had been performed, they arranged
themselves in two divisions and seated themselves upon opposite sides
of the council-fire. Upon one side were the Mohawk, Onondaga and Seneca
sachems. The tribes they represented were, when in council, brother
tribes to each other and father tribes to the other two. In like
manner their sachems were brothers to each other and fathers to those
opposite. They constituted a phratry of tribes and of sachems, by an
extension of the principle which united gentes in a phratry. On the
opposite side of the fire were the Oneida and Cayuga, and, at a later
day, the Tuscarora sachems. The tribes they represented were brother
tribes to each other, and son tribes to the opposite three. Their
sachems also were brothers to each other, and sons of those in the
opposite division. They formed a second tribal phratry. As the Oneidas
were a subdivision of the Mohawks, and the Cayugas a subdivision of
the Onondagas or Senecas, they were in reality junior tribes; whence
their relation of seniors and juniors, and the application of the
phratric principle. When the tribes are named in council the Mohawks
by precedence are mentioned first. Their tribal epithet was “The
Shield” (_Da-gä-e-o′-dä_). The Onondagas came next under the epithet of
“Name-Bearer” (_Ho-de-san-no′-ge-tä_), because they had been appointed
to select and name the fifty original sachems.[138] Next in the order
of precedence were the Senecas, under the epithet of “Door-Keeper”
(_Ho-nan-ne-ho′-ont_). They were made perpetual keepers of the western
door of the Long House. The Oneidas, under the epithet of “Great
Tree” (_Ne-ar′-de-on-dar′-go-war_), and the Cayugas, under that of
“Great Pipe” (_So-nus′-ho-gwar-to-war_), were named fourth and fifth.
The Tuscaroras, who came late into the confederacy, were named last,
and had no distinguishing epithet. Forms, such as these, were more
important in ancient society than we would be apt to suppose.

It was customary for the foreign tribe to be represented at the council
by a delegation of wise-men and chiefs, who bore their proposition
and presented it in person. After the council was formally opened and
the delegation introduced, one of the sachems made a short address,
in the course of which he thanked the Great Spirit for sparing their
lives and permitting them to meet together; after which he informed the
delegation that the council was prepared to hear them upon the affair
for which it had convened. One of the delegates then submitted their
proposition in form, and sustained it by such arguments as he was able
to make. Careful attention was given by the members of the council that
they might clearly comprehend the matter in hand. After the address
was concluded, the delegation withdrew from the council to await at
a distance the result of its deliberations. It then became the duty
of the sachems to agree upon an answer, which was reached through the
ordinary routine of debate and consultation. When a decision had been
made, a speaker was appointed to communicate the answer of the council,
to receive which the delegation were recalled. The speaker was usually
chosen from the tribe at whose instance the council had been convened.
It was customary for him to review the whole subject in a formal
speech, in the course of which the acceptance, in whole or in part,
or the rejection of the proposition were announced with the reasons
therefor. Where an agreement was entered upon, belts of wampum were
exchanged as evidence of its terms. With these proceedings the council
terminated.

“This belt preserves my words” was a common remark of an Iroquois chief
in council. He then delivered the belt as the evidence of what he had
said. Several such belts would be given in the course of a negotiation
to the opposite party. In the reply of the latter a belt would be
returned for each proposition accepted. The Iroquois experienced the
necessity for an exact record of some kind of a proposition involving
their faith and honor in its execution, and they devised this method to
place it beyond dispute.

Unanimity among the sachems was required upon all public questions, and
essential to the validity of every public act. It was a fundamental
law of the confederacy.[139] They adopted a method for ascertaining
the opinions of the members of the council which dispensed with the
necessity of casting votes. Moreover, they were entirely unacquainted
with the principle of majorities and minorities in the action of
councils. They voted in council by tribes, and the sachems of each
tribe were required to be of one mind to form a decision. Recognizing
unanimity as a necessary principle, the founders of the confederacy
divided the sachems of each tribe into classes as a means for its
attainment. This will be seen by consulting the table, (_supra_ p.
130). No sachem was allowed to express an opinion in council in the
nature of a vote until he had first agreed with the sachem or sachems
of his class upon the opinion to be expressed, and had been appointed
to act as speaker for the class. Thus the eight Seneca sachems being in
four classes could have but four opinions, and the ten Cayuga sachems,
being in the same number of classes, could have but four. In this
manner the sachems in each class were first brought to unanimity among
themselves. A cross-consultation was then held between the four sachems
appointed to speak for the four classes; and when they had agreed, they
designated one of their number to express their resulting opinion,
which was the answer of their tribe. When the sachems of the several
tribes had, by this ingenious method, become of one mind separately,
it remained to compare their several opinions, and if they agreed the
decision of the council was made. If they failed of agreement the
measure was defeated, and the council was at an end. The five persons
appointed to express the decision of the five tribes may possibly
explain the appointment and the functions of the six electors, so
called, in the Aztec confederacy, which will be noticed elsewhere.

By this method of gaining assent the equality and independence of
the several tribes were recognized and preserved. If any sachem was
obdurate or unreasonable, influences were brought to bear upon him,
through the preponderating sentiment, which he could not well resist;
so that it seldom happened that inconvenience or detriment resulted
from their adherence to the rule. Whenever all efforts to procure
unanimity had failed, the whole matter was laid aside because further
action had become impossible.

The induction of new sachems into office was an event of great interest
to the people, and not less to the sachems who retained thereby some
control over the introduction of new members into their body. To
perform the ceremony of raising up sachems the general council was
primarily instituted. It was named at the time, or came afterwards to
be called, the Mourning Council (_Hen-nun-do-nuh′-seh_), because it
embraced the twofold object of lamenting the death of the departed
sachems and of installing his successor. Upon the death of a sachem,
the tribe in which the loss had occurred had power to summon a general
council, and to name the time and place of its meeting. A herald was
sent out with a belt of wampum, usually the official belt of the
deceased sachem given to him at his installation, which conveyed this
laconic message;—“the name” (mentioning that of the late ruler) “calls
for a council.” It also announced the day and place of convocation.
In some cases the official belt of the sachem was sent to the
central council-fire at Onondaga immediately after his burial, as a
notification of his demise, and the time for holding the council was
determined afterwards.

The Mourning Council, with the festivities which followed the
investiture of sachems, possessed remarkable attractions for the
Iroquois. They flocked to its attendance from the most distant
localities with zeal and enthusiasm. It was opened and conducted with
many forms and ceremonies, and usually lasted five days. The first was
devoted to the prescribed ceremony of lamentations for the deceased
sachem, which, as a religious act, commenced at the rising of the
sun. At this time the sachems of the tribe, with whom the council was
held, marched out followed by their tribesmen, to receive formally
the sachems and people of the other tribes, who had arrived before
and remained encamped at some distance waiting for the appointed day.
After exchanging greetings, a procession was formed and the lament was
chanted in verse, with responses, by the united tribes, as they marched
from the place of reception to the place of council. The lament, with
the responses in chorus, was a tribute of respect to the memory of
the departed sachem, in which not only his gens, but his tribe, and
the confederacy itself participated. It was certainly a more delicate
testimonial of respect and affection than would have been expected
from a barbarous people. This ceremonial, with the opening of the
council, concluded the first day’s proceedings. On the second day, the
installation ceremony commenced, and it usually lasted into the fourth.
The sachems of the several tribes seated themselves in two divisions,
as at the civil council. When the sachem to be raised up belonged to
either of the three senior tribes the ceremony was performed by the
sachems of the junior tribes, and the new sachem was installed as a
father. In like manner, if he belonged to either of the three junior
tribes the ceremony was performed by the sachems of the senior tribes,
and the new sachem was installed as a son. These special circumstances
are mentioned to show the peculiar character of their social and
governmental life. To the Iroquois these forms and figures of speech
were full of significance.

Among other things, the ancient wampum belts, into which the structure
and principles of the confederacy “had been talked,” to use their
expression, were produced and read or interpreted for the instruction
of the newly inducted sachem. A wise-man, not necessarily one of the
sachems, took these belts one after the other and walking to and
fro between the two divisions of sachems, read from them the facts
which they recorded. According to the Indian conception, these belts
can tell, by means of an interpreter, the exact rule, provision or
transaction talked into them at the time, and of which they were
the exclusive record. A strand of wampum consisting of strings of
purple and white shell beads, or a belt woven with figures formed by
beads of different colors, operated on the principle of associating
a particular fact with a particular string or figure; thus giving a
serial arrangement to the facts as well as fidelity to the memory.
These strands and belts of wampum were the only visible records of
the Iroquois; but they required those trained interpreters who could
draw from their strings and figures the records locked up in their
remembrance. One of the Onondaga sachems (Ho-no-we-nă′-to) was made
“Keeper of the Wampum,” and two aids were raised up with him who were
required to be versed in its interpretation as well as the sachem.
The interpretation of these several belts and strings brought out, in
the address of the wise-man, a connected account of the occurrences
at the formation of the confederacy. The tradition was repeated in
full, and fortified in its essential parts by reference to the record
contained in these belts. Thus the council to raise up sachems became a
teaching council, which maintained in perpetual freshness in the minds
of the Iroquois the structure and principles of the confederacy, as
well as the history of its formation. These proceedings occupied the
council until noon each day; the afternoon being devoted to games and
amusements. At twilight each day a dinner in common was served to the
entire body in attendance. It consisted of soup and boiled meat cooked
near the council-house, and served directly from the kettle in wooden
bowls, trays and ladles. Grace was said before the feast commenced.
It was a prolonged exclamation by a single person on a high shrill
note, falling down in cadences into stillness, followed by a response
in chorus by the people. The evenings were devoted to the dance. With
these ceremonies, continued for several days, and with the festivities
that followed, their sachems were inducted into office.

By investing their sachems with office through a general council, the
framers of the confederacy had in view the threefold object of a
perpetual succession in the gens, the benefits of a free election
among its members, and a final supervision of the choice through the
ceremony of investiture. To render the latter effective it should carry
with it the power to reject the nominee. Whether the right to invest
was purely functional, or carried with it the right to exclude, I am
unable to state. No case of rejection is mentioned. The scheme adopted
by the Iroquois to maintain a ruling body of sachems may claim, in
several respects, the merit of originality, as well as of adaptation
to their condition. In form an oligarchy, taking this term in its best
sense, it was yet a representative democracy of the archaic type. A
powerful popular element pervaded the whole organism and influenced its
action. It is seen in the right of the gentes to elect and depose their
sachems and chiefs, in the right of the people to be heard in council
through orators of their own selection, and in the voluntary system in
the military service. In this and the next succeeding ethnical period
democratic principles were the vital element of gentile society.

The Iroquois name for a sachem (_Ho-yar-na-go′-war_), which signifies
“a counselor of the people,” was singularly appropriate to a ruler
in a species of free democracy. It not only defines the office well,
but it also suggests the analogous designation of the members of the
Grecian council of chiefs. The Grecian chiefs were styled “councilors
of the people.”[140] From the nature and tenure of the office among the
Iroquois the sachems were not masters ruling by independent right, but
representatives holding from the gentes by free election. It is worthy
of notice that an office which originated in savagery, and continued
through the three sub-periods of barbarism, should reveal so much of
its archaic character among the Greeks after the gentile organization
had carried this portion of the human family to the confines of
civilization. It shows further how deeply inwrought in the human mind
the principle of democracy had become under gentilism.

The designation for a chief of the second grade, _Ha-sa-no-wä′-na_,
“an elevated name,” indicates an appreciation by barbarians of the
ordinary motives for personal ambition. It also reveals the sameness of
the nature of man, whether high up or low down upon the rounds of the
ladder of progress. The celebrated orators, wise-men, and war-chiefs of
the Iroquois were chiefs of the second grade almost without exception.
One reason for this may be found in the organic provision which
confined the duties of the sachem to the affairs of peace. Another may
have been to exclude from the ruling body their ablest men, lest their
ambitious aims should disturb its action. As the office of chief was
bestowed in reward of merit, it fell necessarily upon their ablest men.
Red-Jacket, Brandt, Garangula, Cornplanter, Farmer’s Brother, Frost,
Johnson, and other well known Iroquois, were chiefs as distinguished
from sachems. None of the long lines of sachems have become
distinguished in American annals, with the exception of Logan,[141]
Handsome Lake,[142] and at a recent day, Ely S. Parker.[143] The
remainder have left no remembrance behind them extending beyond the
Iroquois.

At the time the confederacy was formed _To-do-dä′-ho_ was the most
prominent and influential of the Onondaga chiefs. His accession to
the plan of a confederacy, in which he would experience a diminution
of power, was regarded as highly meritorious. He was raised up as one
of the Onondaga sachems and his name placed first in the list. Two
assistant sachems were raised up with him to act as his aids and to
stand behind him on public occasions. Thus dignified, this sachemship
has since been regarded by the Iroquois as the most illustrious of the
forty-eight, from the services rendered by the first _To-do-dä′-ho_.
The circumstance was early seized upon by the inquisitive colonists
to advance the person who held this office to the position of king of
the Iroquois; but the misconception was refuted, and the institutions
of the Iroquois were relieved of the burden of an impossible feature.
In the general council he sat among his equals. The confederacy had no
chief executive magistrate.

Under a confederacy of tribes the office of general,
(_Hos-gä-ä-geh′-da-go-wä_) “Great War Soldier,” makes its first
appearance. Cases would now arise when the several tribes in their
confederate capacity would be engaged in war; and the necessity for a
general commander to direct the movements of the united bands would
be felt. The introduction of this office as a permanent feature in
the government was a great event in the history of human progress.
It was the beginning of a differentiation of the military from the
civil power, which, when completed, changed essentially the external
manifestation of the government. But even in later stages of progress,
when the military spirit predominated, the essential character of the
government was not changed. Gentilism arrested usurpation. With the
rise of the office of general, the government was gradually changed
from a government of one power, into a government of two powers. The
functions of government became, in course of time, co-ordinated between
the two. This new office was the germ of that of a chief executive
magistrate; for out of the general came the king, the emperor, and the
president, as elsewhere suggested. The office sprang from the military
necessities of society, and had a logical development. For this reason
its first appearance and subsequent growth have an important place
in this discussion. In the course of this volume I shall attempt to
trace the progressive development of this office, from the _Great War
Soldier_ of the Iroquois through the _Teuctli_ of the Aztecs, to the
_Basileus_ of the Grecian, and the _Rex_ of the Roman tribes; among
all of whom, through three successive ethnical periods, the office was
the same, namely, that of a general in a military democracy. Among
the Iroquois, the Aztecs, and the Romans the office was elective,
or confirmative, by a constituency. Presumptively, it was the same
among the Greeks of the traditionary period. It is claimed that the
office of _basileus_ among the Grecian tribes in the Homeric period
was hereditary from father to son. This is at least doubtful. It is
such a wide and total departure from the original tenure of the office
as to require positive evidence to establish the fact. An election,
or confirmation by a constituency, would still be necessary under
gentile institutions. If in numerous instances it were known that the
office had passed from father to son this might have suggested the
inference of hereditary succession, now adopted as historically true,
while succession in this form did not exist. Unfortunately, an intimate
knowledge of the organization and usages of society in the traditionary
period is altogether wanting. Great principles of human action furnish
the safest guide when their operation must have been necessary. It is
far more probable that hereditary succession, when it first came in,
was established by force, than by the free consent of the people; and
that it did not exist among the Grecian tribes in the Homeric period.

When the Iroquois confederacy was formed, or soon after that event,
two permanent war-chiefships were created and named, and both
were assigned to the Seneca tribe. One of them (_Ta-wan′-ne-ars_,
signifying needle-breaker) was made hereditary in the Wolf, and the
other (_So-no′-so-wä_, signifying great oyster shell) in the Turtle
gens. The reason assigned for giving them both to the Senecas was the
greater danger of attack at the west end of their territories. They
were elected in the same manner as the sachems, were raised up by a
general council, and were equal in rank and power. Another account
states that they were created later. They discovered immediately after
the confederacy was formed that the structure of the Long House was
incomplete because there were no officers to execute the military
commands of the confederacy. A council was convened to remedy the
omission, which established the two perpetual war-chiefs named. As
general commanders they had charge of the military affairs of the
confederacy, and the command of its joint forces when united in a
general expedition. Governor Blacksnake, recently deceased, held the
office first named, thus showing that the succession has been regularly
maintained. The creation of two principal war-chiefs instead of one,
and with equal powers, argues a subtle and calculating policy to
prevent the domination of a single man even in their military affairs.
They did without experience precisely as the Romans did in creating two
consuls instead of one, after they had abolished the office of _rex_.
Two consuls would balance the military power between them, and prevent
either from becoming supreme. Among the Iroquois this office never
became influential.

In Indian Ethnography the subjects of primary importance are the
gens, phratry, tribe and confederacy. They exhibit the organization
of society. Next to these are the tenure and functions of the office
of sachem and chief, the functions of the council of chiefs, and the
tenure and functions of the office of principal war-chief. When these
are ascertained, the structure and principles of their governmental
system will be known. A knowledge of their usages and customs, of
their arts and inventions, and of their plan of life will then fill
out the picture. In the work of American investigators too little
attention has been given to the former. They still afford a rich field
in which much information may be gathered. Our knowledge, which is
now general, should be made minute and comparative. The Indian tribes
in the Lower, and in the Middle Status of barbarism, represent two
of the great stages of progress from savagery to civilization. Our
own remote forefathers passed through the same conditions, one after
the other, and possessed, there can scarcely be a doubt, the same, or
very similar institutions, with many of the same usages and customs.
However little we may be interested in the American Indians personally,
their experience touches us more nearly, as an exemplification of
the experience of our own ancestors. Our primary institutions root
themselves in a prior gentile society in which the gens, phratry and
tribe were the organic series, and in which the council of chiefs was
the instrument of government. The phenomena of their ancient society
must have presented many points in common with that of the Iroquois
and other Indian tribes. This view of the matter lends an additional
interest to the comparative institutions of mankind.

The Iroquois confederacy is an excellent exemplification of a gentile
society under this form of organization. It seems to realize all the
capabilities of gentile institutions in the Lower Status of barbarism;
leaving an opportunity for further development, but no subsequent plan
of government until the institutions of political society, founded
upon territory and upon property, with the establishment of which
the gentile organization would be overthrown. The intermediate stages
were transitional, remaining military democracies to the end, except
where tyrannies founded upon usurpation were temporarily established
in their places. The confederacy of the Iroquois was essentially
democratical; because it was composed of gentes each of which was
organized upon the common principles of democracy, not of the highest
but of the primitive type, and because the tribes reserved the right
of local self-government. They conquered other tribes and held them in
subjection, as for example the Delawares; but the latter remained under
the government of their own chiefs, and added nothing to the strength
of the confederacy. It was impossible in this state of society to unite
tribes under one government who spoke different languages, or to hold
conquered tribes under tribute with any benefit but the tribute.

This exposition of the Iroquois confederacy is far from exhaustive of
the facts, but it has been carried far enough to answer my present
object. The Iroquois were a vigorous and intelligent people, with a
brain approaching in volume the Aryan average. Eloquent in oratory,
vindictive in war, and indomitable in perseverance, they have gained a
place in history. If their military achievements are dreary with the
atrocities of savage warfare, they have illustrated some of the highest
virtues of mankind in their relations with each other. The confederacy
which they organized must be regarded as a remarkable production of
wisdom and sagacity. One of its avowed objects was peace; to remove
the cause of strife by uniting their tribes under one government, and
then extending it by incorporating other tribes of the same name and
lineage. They urged the Eries and the Neutral Nation to become members
of the confederacy, and for their refusal expelled them from their
borders. Such an insight into the highest objects of government is
creditable to their intelligence. Their numbers were small, but they
counted in their ranks a large number of able men. This proves the high
grade of the stock.

From their position and military strength they exercised a marked
influence upon the course of events between the English and the
French in their competition for supremacy in North America. As the
two were nearly equal in power and resources during the first century
of colonization, the French may ascribe to the Iroquois, in no small
degree, the overthrow of their plans of empire in the New World.

With a knowledge of the gens in its archaic form and of its
capabilities as the unit of a social system, we shall be better able to
understand the gentes of the Greeks and Romans yet to be considered.
The same scheme of government composed of gentes, phratries and tribes
in a gentile society will be found among them as they stood at the
threshold of civilization, with the superadded experience of two entire
ethnical periods. Descent among them was in the male line, property
was inherited by the children of the owner instead of the agnatic
kindred, and the family was now assuming the monogamian form. The
growth of property, now becoming a commanding element, and the increase
of numbers gathered in walled cities were slowly demonstrating the
necessity for the second great plan of government—the political. The
old gentile system was becoming incapable of meeting the requirements
of society as it approached civilization. Glimpses of a state, founded
upon territory and property, were breaking upon the Grecian and Roman
minds before which gentes and tribes were to disappear. To enter upon
the second plan of government, it was necessary to supersede the gentes
by townships and city wards—the gentile by a territorial system. The
going down of the gentes and the uprising of organized townships
mark the dividing line, pretty nearly, between the barbarian and the
civilized worlds—between ancient and modern society.



CHAPTER VI.

GENTES IN OTHER TRIBES OF THE GANOWÁNIAN FAMILY.

    DIVISIONS OF AMERICAN ABORIGINES.—GENTES IN INDIAN TRIBES;
    WITH THEIR RULES OF DESCENT AND INHERITANCE.—I. HODENOSAUNIAN
    TRIBES.—II. DAKOTIAN.—III. GULF.—IV. PAWNEE.—V. ALGONKIN.—VI.
    ATHAPASCO-APACHE.—VII. TRIBES OF NORTHWEST COAST.—ESKIMOS,
    A DISTINCT FAMILY.—VIII. SALISH, SAHAPTIN, AND KOOTENAY
    TRIBES.—IX. SHOSHONEE.—X. VILLAGE INDIANS OF NEW MEXICO,
    MEXICO AND CENTRAL AMERICA.—XI. SOUTH AMERICAN INDIAN
    TRIBES.—PROBABLE UNIVERSALITY OF THE ORGANIZATION IN GENTES IN
    THE GANOWÁNIAN FAMILY.


When America was first discovered in its several regions, the
Aborigines were found in two dissimilar conditions. First were the
Village Indians, who depended almost exclusively upon horticulture for
subsistence; such were the tribes in this status in New Mexico, Mexico
and Central America, and upon the plateau of the Andes. Second, were
the Non-horticultural Indians, who depended upon fish, bread-roots
and game; such were the Indians of the Valley of the Columbia, of
the Hudson’s Bay Territory, of parts of Canada, and of some other
sections of America. Between these tribes, and connecting the extremes
by insensible gradations, were the partially Village, and partially
Horticultural Indians; such were the Iroquois, the New England and
Virginia Indians, the Creeks, Choctas, Cherokees, Minnitarees, Dakotas
and Shawnees. The weapons, arts, usages, inventions, dances, house
architecture, form of government, and plan of life of all alike
bear the impress of a common mind, and reveal, through their wide
range, the successive stages of development of the same original
conceptions. Our first mistake consisted in overrating the comparative
advancement of the Village Indians; and our second in underrating
that of the Non-horticultural, and of the partially Village Indians:
whence resulted a third, that of separating one from the other and
regarding them as different races. There was a marked difference in
the conditions in which they were severally found; for a number of
the Non-horticultural tribes were in the Upper Status of savagery;
the intermediate tribes were in the Lower Status of barbarism, and
the Village Indians were in the Middle Status. The evidence of their
unity of origin has now accumulated to such a degree as to leave no
reasonable doubt upon the question, although this conclusion is not
universally accepted. The Eskimos belong to a different family.

In a previous work I presented the system of consanguinity and affinity
of some seventy American Indian tribes; and upon the fact of their
joint possession of the same system, with evidence of its derivation
from a common source, ventured to claim for them the distinctive rank
of a family of mankind, under the name of the Ganowánian, the “Family
of the Bow and Arrow.”[144]

Having considered the attributes of the gens in its archaic form, it
remains to indicate the extent of its prevalence in the tribes of the
Ganowánian family. In this chapter the organization will be traced
among them, confining the statements to the names of the gentes in
each tribe, with their rules of descent and inheritance as to property
and office. Further explanations will be added when necessary. The
main point to be established is the existence or non-existence of the
gentile organization among them. Wherever the institution has been
found in these several tribes it is the same in all essential respects
as the gens of the Iroquois, and therefore needs no further exposition
in this connection. Unless the contrary is stated, it may be understood
that the existence of the organization was ascertained by the author
from the Indian tribe or some of its members. The classification of
tribes follows that adopted in “Systems of Consanguinity.”

I. _Hodenosaunian Tribes._

1. Iroquois. The gentes of the Iroquois have been considered.[145]

2. Wyandotes. This tribe, the remains of the ancient Hurons, is
composed of eight gentes, as follows:

    1. Wolf.   2. Bear.   3. Beaver.    4. Turtle.
    5. Deer.   6. Snake.  7. Porcupine. 8. Hawk.[146]

Descent is in the female line, with marriage in the gens prohibited.
The office of sachem, or civil chief, is hereditary in the gens,
but elective among its members. They have seven sachems and seven
war-chiefs, the Hawk gens being now extinct. The office of sachem
passes from brother to brother, or from uncle to nephew; but that of
war-chief was bestowed in reward of merit, and was not hereditary.
Property was hereditary in the gens, consequently children took nothing
from their father; but they inherited their mother’s effects. Where
the rule is stated hereafter it will be understood that unmarried as
well as married persons are included. Each gens had power to depose
as well as elect its chiefs. The Wyandotes have been separated from
the Iroquois at least four hundred years; but they still have five
gentes in common, although their names have either changed beyond
identification, or new names have been substituted by one or the other.

The Eries, Neutral Nation, Nottoways, Tutelos,[147] and
Susquehannocks[148] now extinct or absorbed in other tribes, belong to
the same lineage. Presumptively they were organized in gentes, but the
evidence of the fact is lost.

II. _Dakotian Tribes._

A large number of tribes are included in this great stock of the
American aborigines. At the time of their discovery they had fallen
into a number of groups, and their language into a number of dialects;
but they inhabited, in the main, continuous areas. They occupied the
head waters of the Mississippi, and both banks of the Missouri for more
than a thousand miles in extent. In all probability the Iroquois, and
their cognate tribes, were an offshoot from this stem.

1. Dakotas or Sioux. The Dakotas, consisting at the present time of
some twelve independent tribes, have allowed the gentile organization
to fall into decadence. It seems substantially certain that they once
possessed it because their nearest congeners, the Missouri tribes, are
now thus organized. They have societies named after animals analogous
to gentes, but the latter are now wanting. Carver, who was among them
in 1767, remarks that “every separate body of Indians is divided into
bands or tribes; which band or tribe forms a little community with the
nation to which it belongs. As the nation has some particular symbol by
which it is distinguished from others, so each tribe has a badge from
which it is denominated; as that of the eagle, the panther, the tiger,
the buffalo, etc. One band of the Naudowissies [Sioux] is represented
by a Snake, another a Tortoise, a third a Squirrel, a fourth a Wolf,
and a fifth a Buffalo. Throughout every nation they particularize
themselves in the same manner, and the meanest person among them will
remember his lineal descent, and distinguish himself by his respective
family.”[149] He visited the eastern Dakotas on the Mississippi. From
this specific statement I see no reason to doubt that the gentile
organization was then in full vitality among them. When I visited the
eastern Dakotas in 1861, and the western in 1862, I could find no
satisfactory traces of gentes among them. A change in the mode of life
among the Dakotas occurred between these dates when they were forced
upon the plains, and fell into nomadic bands, which may, perhaps,
explain the decadence of gentilism among them.

Carver also noticed the two grades of chiefs among the western
Indians, which have been explained as they exist among the Iroquois.
“Every band,” he observes, “has a chief who is termed the Great Chief,
or the Chief Warrior, and who is chosen in consideration of his
experience in war, and of his approved valor, to direct their military
operations, and to regulate all concerns belonging to that department.
But this chief is not considered the head of the state; besides the
great warrior who is elected for his warlike qualifications, there is
another who enjoys a pre-eminence as his hereditary right, and has the
more immediate management of their civil affairs. This chief might with
greater propriety be denominated the sachem; whose assent is necessary
to all conveyances and treaties, to which he affixes the mark of the
tribe or nation.”[150]

2. Missouri tribes. 1. Punkas. This tribe is composed of eight gentes,
as follows:

    1. Grizzly Bear.  2. Many People.  3. Elk.       4. Skunk.
    5. Buffalo.       6. Snake.        7. Medicine.  8. Ice.[151]

In this tribe, contrary to the general rule, descent is in the male
line, the children belonging to the gens of their father. Intermarriage
in the gens is prohibited. The office of sachem is hereditary in
the gens, the choice being determined by election; but the sons of
a deceased sachem are eligible. It is probable that the change from
the archaic form was recent, from the fact that among the Otoes and
Missouris, two of the eight Missouri tribes, and also among the
Mandans, descent is still in the female line. Property is hereditary in
the gens.

2. Omahas. This tribe is composed of the following twelve gentes:

    1. Deer.     2. Black.  3. Bird.      4. Turtle.
    5. Buffalo.  6. Bear.   7. Medicine.  8. Kaw.
    9. Head.    10. Red.   11. Thunder.  12. Many Seasons.[152]

Descent, inheritance, and the law of marriage are the same as among the
Punkas.

3. Iowas. In like manner the Iowas have eight gentes, as follows:

    1. Wolf.  2. Bear.    3. Cow Buffalo.  4. Elk.
    5. Eagle. 6. Pigeon.  7. Snake.        8. Owl.[153]

A gens of the Beaver _Pä-kuh′-thä_ once existed among the Iowas and
Otoes, but it is now extinct. Descent, inheritance, and the prohibition
of intermarriage in the gens are the same as among the Punkas.

4. Otoes and Missouris. These tribes have coalesced into one, and have
the eight following gentes:

    1. Wolf.   2. Bear.    3. Cow Buffalo.  4. Elk.
    5. Eagle.  6. Pigeon.  7. Snake.        8. Owl.[154]

Descent among the Otoes and Missouris is in the female line, the
children belonging to the gens of their mother. The office of sachem,
and property are hereditary in the gens, in which intermarriage is
prohibited.

5. Kaws. The Kaws (Kaw′-ză) have the following fourteen gentes:

    1. Deer.           2. Bear.     3. Buffalo.  4. Eagle (white).
    5. Eagle (black).  6. Duck.     7. Elk.      8. Raccoon.
    9. Prairie Wolf.  10. Turtle.  11. Earth.   12. Deer Tail.
   13. Tent.          14. Thunder.[155]

The Kaws are among the wildest of the American aborigines, but are an
intelligent and interesting people. Descent, inheritance and marriage
regulations among them are the same as among the Punkas. It will be
observed that there are two Eagle gentes, and two of the Deer, which
afford a good illustration of the segmentation of a gens; the Eagle
gens having probably divided into two and distinguished themselves by
the names of white and black. The Turtle will be found hereafter as
a further illustration of the same fact. When I visited the Missouri
tribes in 1859 and 1860, I was unable to reach the Osages and Quappas.
The eight tribes thus named speak closely affiliated dialects of the
Dakotian stock language, and the presumption that the Osages and
Quappas are organized in gentes is substantially conclusive. In 1869,
the Kaws, then much reduced, numbered seven hundred, which would give
an average of but fifty persons to a gens. The home country of these
several tribes was along the Missouri and its tributaries from the
mouth of the Big Sioux river to the Mississippi, and down the west bank
of the latter river to the Arkansas.

3. Winnebagoes. When discovered this tribe resided near the lake of
their name in Wisconsin. An offshoot from the Dakotian stem, they were
apparently following the track of the Iroquois eastward to the valley
of the St. Lawrence, when their further progress in that direction was
arrested by the Algonkin tribes between Lakes Huron and Superior. Their
nearest affiliation is with the Missouri tribes. They have eight gentes
as follows:

    1. Wolf.  2. Bear.  3. Buffalo.  4. Eagle.
    5. Elk.   6. Deer.  7. Snake.    8. Thunder.[156]

Descent, inheritance, and the law of marriage are the same among
them as among the Punkas. It is surprising that so many tribes of
this stock should have changed descent from the female line to the
male, because when first known the idea of property was substantially
undeveloped, or but slightly beyond the germinating stage, and could
hardly, as among the Greeks and Romans, have been the operative cause.
It is probable that it occurred at a recent period under American and
missionary influences. Carver found traces of descent in the female
line in 1787 among the Winnebagoes. “Some nations,” he remarks, “when
the dignity is hereditary, limit the succession to the female line. On
the death of a chief his sisters’ son succeeds him in preference to
his own son; and if he happens to have no sister the nearest female
relation assumes the dignity. This accounts for a woman being at the
head of the Winnebago nation, which, before I was acquainted with their
laws, appeared strange to me.”[157] In 1869, the Winnebagoes numbered
fourteen hundred, which would give an average of one hundred and fifty
persons to the gens.

4. _Upper Missouri Tribes._

1. Mandans. In intelligence and in the arts of life the Mandans were
in advance of all their kindred tribes, for which they were probably
indebted to the Minnitarees. They are divided into seven gentes as
follows:

    1. Wolf.   2. Bear.      3. Prairie Chicken.  4. Good Knife.
    5. Eagle.  6. Flathead.  7. High Village.[158]

Descent is in the female line, with office and property hereditary in
the gens. Intermarriage in the gens is not permitted. Descent in the
female line among the Mandans would be singular where so many tribes
of the same stock have it in the male, were it not in the archaic form
from which the other tribes had but recently departed. It affords a
strong presumption that it was originally in the female line in all
the Dakotian tribes. This information with respect to the Mandans was
obtained at the old Mandan Village in the Upper Missouri, in 1862, from
Joseph Kip, whose mother was a Mandan woman. He confirmed the fact of
descent by naming his mother’s gens, which was also his own.

2. Minnitarees. This tribe and the Upsarokas (Up-sar′-o-kas) or Crows,
are subdivisions of an original people. They are doubtful members of
this branch of the Ganowánian family: although from the number of words
in their dialects and in those of the Missouri and Dakota tribes which
are common, they have been placed with them linguistically. They have
had an antecedent experience of which but little is known. Minnitarees
carried horticulture, the timber-framed house, and a peculiar religious
system into this area which they taught to the Mandans. There is a
possibility that they are descendants of the Mound-Builders. They have
the seven following gentes:

    1. Knife.            2. Water.        3. Lodge.
    4. Prairie Chicken.  5. Hill People.  6. Unknown Animal.
                         7. Bonnet.[159]

Descent is in the female line, intermarriage in the gens is forbidden,
and the office of sachem as well as property is hereditary in the gens.
The Minnitarees and Mandans now live together in the same village. In
personal appearance they are among the finest specimens of the Red Man
now living in any part of North America.

3. Upsarokas or Crows. This tribe has the following gentes:

    1. Prairie Dog.           2. Bad Leggins.
    3. Skunk.                 4. Treacherous Lodges.
    5. Lost Lodges.           6. Bad Honors.
    7. Butchers.              8. Moving Lodges.
    9. Bear’s Paw Mountain.  10. Blackfoot Lodges.
    11. Fish Catchers.       12. Antelope.
                 13. Raven.[160]

Descent, inheritance and the prohibition of intermarriage in the gens,
are the same as among the Minnitarees. Several of the names of the
Crow gentes are unusual, and more suggestive of bands than of gentes.
For a time I was inclined to discredit them. But the existence of the
organization into gentes was clearly established by their rules of
descent, and marital usages, and by their laws of inheritance with
respect to property. My interpreter when among the Crows was Robert
Meldrum, then one of the factors of the American Fur Company, who had
lived with the Crows forty years, and was one of their chiefs. He
had mastered the language so completely that he thought in it. The
following special usages with respect to inheritance were mentioned
by him. If a person to whom any article of property had been presented
died with it in his possession, and the donor was dead, it reverted to
the gens of the latter. Property made or acquired by a wife descended
after her death to her children; while that of her husband after his
decease belonged to his gentile kindred. If a person made a present
to a friend and died, the latter must perform some recognized act of
mourning, such as cutting off the joint of a finger at the funeral, or
surrender the property to the gens of his deceased friend.[161]

The Crows have a custom with respect to marriage, which I have found
in at least forty other Indian tribes, which may be mentioned here,
because some use will be made of it in a subsequent chapter. If a man
marries the eldest daughter in a family he is entitled to all her
sisters as additional wives when they attain maturity. He may waive the
right, but if he insists, his superior claim would be recognized by
her gens. Polygamy is allowed by usage among the American aborigines
generally; but it was never prevalent to any considerable extent from
the inability of persons to support more than one family. Direct
proof of the existence of the custom first mentioned was afforded by
Meldrum’s wife, then at the age of twenty-five. She was captured when a
child in a foray upon the Blackfeet, and became Meldrum’s captive. He
induced his mother-in-law to adopt the child into her gens and family,
which made the captive the younger sister of his then wife, and gave
him the right to take her as another wife when she reached maturity. He
availed himself of this usage of the tribe to make his claim paramount.
This usage has a great antiquity in the human family. It is a survival
of the old custom of _punalua_.

III. _Gulf Tribes._

1. Muscokees or Creeks. The Creek Confederacy consisted of six Tribes;
namely, the Creeks, Hitchetes, Yoochees, Alabamas, Coosatees, and
Natches, all of whom spoke dialects of the same language, with the
exception of the Natches, who were admitted into the confederacy after
their overthrow by the French.

The Creeks are composed of twenty-two gentes as follows:

     1. Wolf.           2. Bear.                3. Skunk.
     4. Alligator.      5. Deer.                6. Bird.
     7. Tiger.          8. Wind.                9. Toad.
    10. Mole.          11. Fox.                12. Raccoon.
    13. Fish.          14. Corn.               15. Potatoe.
    16. Hickory Nut.   17. Salt.               18. Wild Cat.
    19. (Sig’n Lost).  20. (Sig’n Lost).[162]  21. (Sig’n Lost).
                       22. (Sig’n Lost).[163]

The remaining tribes of this confederacy are said to have had the
organization into gentes, as the author was informed by the Rev. S. M.
Loughridge, who was for many years a missionary among the Creeks, and
who furnished the names of the gentes above given. He further stated
that descent among the Creeks was in the female line; that the office
of sachem and the property of deceased persons were hereditary in the
gens, and that intermarriage in the gens was prohibited. At the present
time the Creeks are partially civilized with a changed plan of life.
They have substituted a political in place of the old social system, so
that in a few years all traces of their old gentile institutions will
have disappeared. In 1869 they numbered about fifteen thousand, which
would give an average of five hundred and fifty persons to the gens.

2. Choctas. Among the Choctas the phratric organization appears in
a conspicuous manner, because each phratry is named, and stands out
plainly as a phratry. It doubtless existed in a majority of the tribes
previously named, but the subject has not been specially investigated.
The tribe of the Creeks consists of eight gentes arranged in two
phratries, composed of four gentes each, as among the Iroquois.

        I. _Divided People. (First Phratry)._

    1. Reed.  2. Law Okla.  3. Lulak.  4. Linoklusha.

      II. _Beloved People. (Second Phratry)._

    1. Beloved People.  2. Small People.
    3. Large People.    4. Cray Fish.[164]

The gentes of the same phratry could not intermarry; but the members
of either of the first gentes could marry into either gens of the
second, and _vice versâ_. It shows that the Choctas, like the Iroquois,
commenced with two gentes, each of which afterwards subdivided into
four, and that the original prohibition of intermarriage in the gens
had followed the subdivisions. Descent among the Choctas was in the
female line. Property and the office of sachem were hereditary in the
gens. In 1869 they numbered some twelve thousand, which would give an
average of fifteen hundred persons to a gens. The foregoing information
was communicated to the author by the late Dr. Cyrus Byington, who
entered the missionary service in this tribe in 1820 while they still
resided in their ancient territory east of the Mississippi, who removed
with them to the Indian Territory, and died in the missionary service
about the year 1868, after forty-five years of missionary labors. A man
of singular excellence and purity of character, he has left behind him
a name and a memory of which humanity may be proud.

A Chocta once expressed to Dr. Byington a wish that he might be made a
citizen of the United States, for the reason that his children would
then inherit his property instead of his gentile kindred under the old
law of the gens. Chocta usages would distribute his property after his
death among his brothers and sisters and the children of his sisters.
He could, however, give his property to his children in his life-time,
in which case they could hold it against the members of his gens. Many
Indian tribes now have considerable property in domestic animals and
in houses and lands owned by individuals, among whom the practice
of giving it to their children in their life-time has become common
to avoid gentile inheritance. As property increased in quantity the
disinheritance of children began to arouse opposition to gentile
inheritance; and in some of the tribes, that of the Choctas among the
number, the old usage was abolished a few years since, and the right to
inherit was vested exclusively in the children of the deceased owner.
It came, however, through the substitution of a political system in
the place of the gentile system, an elective council and magistracy
being substituted in place of the old government of chiefs. Under the
previous usages the wife inherited nothing from her husband, nor he
from her; but the wife’s effects were divided among her children, and
in default of them, among her sisters.

3. Chickasas. In like manner the Chickasas were organized in two
phratries, of which the first contains four, and the second eight
gentes, as follows:

            I. _Panther Phratry._

    1. Wild Cat.  2. Bird.  3. Fish.  4. Deer.

           II. _Spanish Phratry._

    1. Raccoon.   2. Spanish.    3. Royal.  4. Hush-ko-ni.
    5. Squirrel.  6. Alligator.  7. Wolf.   8. Blackbird.[165]

Descent was in the female line, intermarriage in the gens was
prohibited, and property as well as the office of sachem were
hereditary in the gens. The above particulars were obtained from the
Rev. Charles C. Copeland, an American missionary residing with this
tribe. In 1869 they numbered some five thousand, which would give an
average of about four hundred persons to the gens. A new gens seems to
have been formed after their intercourse with the Spaniards commenced,
or this name, for reasons, may have been substituted in the place of an
original name. One of the phratries is also called the Spanish.

4. Cherokees. This tribe was anciently composed of ten gentes, of which
two, the Acorn, _Ah-ne-dsŭ′-la_, and the Bird, _Ah-ne-dse′-skwä_, are
now extinct. They are the following:

    1. Wolf.   2. Red Paint  3. Long Prairie.  4. Deaf. (A bird.)
    5. Holly.  6. Deer.      7. Blue.          8. Long Hair.[166]

Descent is in the female line, and intermarriage in the gens
prohibited. In 1869 the Cherokees numbered fourteen thousand, which
would give an average of seventeen hundred and fifty persons to each
gens. This is the largest number, so far as the fact is known, ever
found in a single gens among the American aborigines. The Cherokees
and Ojibwas at the present time exceed all the remaining Indian tribes
within the United States in the number of persons speaking the same
dialect. It may be remarked further, that it is not probable that
there ever was at any time in any part of North America a hundred
thousand Indians who spoke the same dialect. The Aztecs, Tezcucans and
Tlascalans were the only tribes of whom so large a number could, with
any propriety, be claimed; and with respect to them it is difficult to
perceive how the existence of so large a number in either tribe could
be established, at the epoch of the Spanish Conquest, upon trustworthy
evidence. The unusual numbers of the Creeks and Cherokees is due to the
possession of domestic animals and a well-developed field agriculture.
They are now partially civilized, having substituted an elective
constitutional government in the place of the ancient gentes, under the
influence of which the latter are rapidly falling into decadence.

5. Seminoles. This tribe is of Creek descent. They are said to be
organized into gentes, but the particulars have not been obtained.

IV. _Pawnee Tribes._

Whether or not the Pawnees are organized in gentes has not been
ascertained. Rev. Samuel Allis, who had formerly been a missionary
among them, expressed to the author his belief that they were, although
he had not investigated the matter specially. He named the following
gentes of which he believed they were composed:

    1. Bear.     2. Beaver.  3. Eagle.
    4. Buffalo.  5. Deer.    6. Owl.

I once met a band of Pawnees on the Missouri, but was unable to obtain
an interpreter.

The Arickarees, whose village is near that of the Minnitarees, are the
nearest congeners of the Pawnees, and the same difficulty occurred with
them. These tribes, with the Huecos and some two or three other small
tribes residing on the Canadian river, have always lived west of the
Missouri, and speak an independent stock language. If the Pawnees are
organized in gentes, presumptively the other tribes are the same.

V. _Algonkin Tribes._

At the epoch of their discovery this great stock of the American
aborigines occupied the area from the Rocky Mountains to Hudson’s
Bay, south of the Siskatchewun, and thence eastward to the Atlantic,
including both shores of Lake Superior, except at its head, and both
banks of the St. Lawrence below Lake Champlain. Their area extended
southward along the Atlantic coast to North Carolina, and down the east
bank of the Mississippi in Wisconsin and Illinois to Kentucky. Within
the eastern section of this immense region the Iroquois and their
affiliated tribes were an intrusive people, their only competitor for
supremacy within its boundaries.

Gitchigamian[167] Tribes. 1. Ojibwas. The Ojibwas speak the same
dialect, and are organized in gentes, of which the names of
twenty-three have been obtained without being certain that they include
the whole number. In the Ojibwa dialect the word _totem_, quite as
often pronounced _dodaim_, signifies the symbol or device of a gens;
thus the figure of a wolf was the totem of the Wolf gens. From this Mr.
Schoolcraft used the words “totemic system,” to express the gentile
organization, which would be perfectly acceptable were it not that we
have both in the Latin and the Greek a terminology for every quality
and character of the system which is already historical. It may be
used, however, with advantage. The Ojibwas have the following gentes:

     1. Wolf.          2. Bear.               3. Beaver.
     4. Turtle (Mud).  5. Turtle (Snapping).  6. Turtle (Little).
     7. Reindeer.      8. Snipe.              9. Crane.
    10. Pigeon Hawk.  11. Bald Eagle.        12. Loon.
    13. Duck.         14. Duck.              15. Snake.
    16. Muskrat.      17. Marten.            18. Heron.
    19. Bull-head.    20. Carp.              21. Cat Fish
    22. Sturgeon.     23. Pike.[168]

Descent is in the male line, the children belonging to their father’s
gens. There are several reasons for the inference that it was
originally in the female line, and that the change was comparatively
recent. In the first place, the Delawares, who are recognized by
all Algonkin tribes as one of the oldest of their lineage, and who
are styled “Grandfathers” by all alike, still have descent in the
female line. Several other Algonkin tribes have the same. Secondly,
evidence still remains that within two or three generations back of the
present, descent was in the female line, with respect to the office of
chief.[169] Thirdly, American and missionary influences have generally
opposed it. A scheme of descent which disinherited the sons seemed
to the early missionaries, trained under very different conceptions,
without justice or reason; and it is not improbable that in a number
of tribes, the Ojibwas included, the change was made under their
teachings. And lastly, since several Algonkin tribes now have descent
in the female line, it leads to the conclusion that it was anciently
universal in the Ganowánian family, it being also the archaic form of
the institution.

Intermarriage in the gens is prohibited, and both property and office
are hereditary in the gens. The children, however, at the present time,
take the most of it to the exclusion of their gentile kindred. The
property and effects of the mother pass to her children, and in default
of them, to her sisters, own and collateral. In like manner the son
may succeed his father in the office of sachem; but where there are
several sons the choice is determined by the elective principle. The
gentiles not only elect, but they also retain the power to depose. At
the present time the Ojibwas number some sixteen thousand, which would
give an average of about seven hundred to each gens.

2. Potawattamies. This tribe has fifteen gentes, as follows:

     1. Wolf.      2. Bear.     3. Beaver.
     4. Elk.       5. Loon.     6. Eagle.
     7. Sturgeon.  8. Carp.     9. Bald Eagle
    10. Thunder.  11. Rabbit.  12. Crow.
    13. Fox.      14. Turkey.  15. Black Hawk.[170]

Descent, inheritance, and the law of marriage are the same as among the
Ojibwas.

3. Otawas.[171] The Ojibwas, Otawas and Potawattamies were subdivisions
of an original tribe. When first known they were confederated. The
Otawas were undoubtedly organized in gentes, but their names have not
been obtained.

4. Crees. This tribe, when discovered, held the northwest shore of
Lake Superior, and spread from thence to Hudson’s Bay, and westward to
the Red River of the North. At a later day they occupied the region
of the Siskatchewun, and south of it. Like the Dakotas they have
lost the gentile organization which presumptively once existed among
them. Linguistically their nearest affiliation is with the Ojibwas,
whom they closely resemble in manners and customs, and in personal
appearance.

Mississippi Tribes. The western Algonkins, grouped under this name,
occupied the eastern banks of the Mississippi in Wisconsin and
Illinois, and extended southward into Kentucky, and eastward into
Indiana.

1. Miamis. The immediate congeners of the Miamis, namely, the
Weas, Piankeshaws, Peorias, and Kaskaskias, known at an early day,
collectively, as the Illinois, are now few in numbers, and have
abandoned their ancient usages for a settled agricultural life. Whether
or not they were formerly organized in gentes has not been ascertained,
but it is probable that they were. The Miamis have the following ten
gentes:

    1. Wolf.     2. Loon.    3. Eagle.    4. Buzzard.
    5. Panther.  6. Turkey.  7. Raccoon.  8. Snow.
    9. Sun.     10. Water.[172]

Under their changed condition and declining numbers the gentile
organization is rapidly disappearing. When its decline commenced
descent was in the male line, intermarriage in the gens was forbidden,
and the office of sachem together with property were hereditary in the
gens.

2. Shawnees. This remarkable and highly advanced tribe, one of the
highest representatives of the Algonkin stock, still retain their
gentes, although they have substituted in place of the old gentile
system a civil organization with a first and second head-chief and a
council, each elected annually by popular suffrage. They have thirteen
gentes, which they still maintain for social and genealogical purposes,
as follows:

    1. Wolf.      2. Loon.     3. Bear.    4. Buzzard.
    5. Panther.   6. Owl.      7. Turkey.  8. Deer.
    9. Raccoon.  10. Turtle.  11. Snake.  12. Horse.
                      13. Rabbit.[173]

Descent, inheritance, and the rule with respect to marrying out of the
gens are the same as among the Miamis. In 1869 the Shawnees numbered
but seven hundred, which would give an average of about fifty persons
to the gens. They once numbered three or four thousand persons, which
was above the average among the American Indian tribes.

The Shawnees had a practice, common also to the Miamis and Sauks
and Foxes, of naming children into the gens of the father or of the
mother or any other gens, under certain restrictions, which deserves
a moment’s notice. It has been shown that among the Iroquois each
gens had its own special names for persons which no other gens had a
right to use.[174] This usage was probably general. Among the Shawnees
these names carried with them the rights of the gens to which they
belonged, so that the name determined the gens of the person. As the
sachem must, in all cases, belong to the gens over which he is invested
with authority, it is not unlikely that the change of descent from
the female line to the male commenced in this practice; in the first
place to enable a son to succeed his father, and in the second to
enable children to inherit property from their father. If a son when
christened received a name belonging to the gens of his father it would
place him in his father’s gens and in the line of succession, but
subject to the elective principle. The father, however, had no control
over the question. It was left by the gens to certain persons, most of
them matrons, who were to be consulted when children were to be named,
with power to determine the name to be given. By some arrangement
between the Shawnee gentes these persons had this power, and the name
when conferred in the prescribed manner, carried the person into the
gens to which the name belonged.

There are traces of the archaic rule of descent among the Shawnees, of
which the following illustration may be given as it was mentioned to
the author. _Lä-ho′-weh_, a sachem of the Wolf gens, when about to die,
expressed a desire that a son of one of his sisters might succeed him
in the place of his own son. But his nephew (_Kos-kwa′-the_) was of the
Fish and his son of the Rabbit gens, so that neither could succeed him
without first being transferred, by a change of name, to the Wolf gens,
in which the office was hereditary. His wish was respected. After his
death the name of his nephew was changed to _Tep-a-tä-go-the′_, one of
the Wolf names, and he was elected to the office. Such laxity indicates
a decadence of the gentile organization; but it tends to show that at
no remote period descent among the Shawnees was in the female line.

3. Sauks and Foxes. These tribes are consolidated into one, and have
the following gentes:

     1. Wolf.        2. Bear.   3. Deer.   4. Elk.
     5. Hawk.        6. Eagle.  7. Fish.   8. Buffalo.
     9. Thunder.    10. Bone.  11. Fox.   12. Sea.
    13. Sturgeon.   14. Big Tree.[175]

Descent, inheritance, and the rule requiring marriage out of the gens,
are the same as among the Miamis. In 1869 they numbered but seven
hundred, which would give an average of fifty persons to the gens. The
number of gentes still preserved affords some evidence that they were
several times more numerous within the previous two centuries.

4. Menominees and Kikapoos. These tribes, which are independent of
each other, are organized in gentes, but their names have not been
procured. With respect to the Menominees it may be inferred that, until
a recent period, descent was in the female line, from the following
statement made to the author, in 1859, by Antoine Gookie, a member of
this tribe. In answer to a question concerning the rule of inheritance,
he replied: “If I should die, my brothers and maternal uncles would rob
my wife and children of my property. We now expect that our children
will inherit our effects, but there is no certainty of it. The old law
gives my property to my nearest kindred who are not my children, but my
brothers and sisters, and maternal uncles.” It shows that property was
hereditary in the gens, but restricted to the agnatic kindred in the
female line.

Rocky Mountain Tribes. 1. Blood Blackfeet. This tribe is composed of
the five following gentes:

    1. Blood.           2. Fish Eaters.  3. Skunk.
    4. Extinct Animal.  5. Elk.[176]

Descent is in the male line, but intermarriage in the gens is not
allowed.

2. Piegan Blackfeet. This tribe has the eight following gentes:

    1. Blood.       2. Skunk.      3. Web Fat.
    4. Inside Fat.  5. Conjurers.  6. Never Laugh.
    7. Starving.    8. Half Dead Meat.[177]

Descent is in the male line, and intermarriage in the gens is
prohibited. Several of the names above given are more appropriate
to bands than to gentes; but as the information was obtained from
the Blackfeet direct, through competent interpreters, (Mr. and Mrs.
Alexander Culbertson, the latter a Blackfeet woman) I believe it
reliable. It is possible that nicknames for gentes in some cases may
have superseded the original names.

_Atlantic Tribes._

1. Delawares. As elsewhere stated the Delawares are, in the duration
of their separate existence, one of the oldest of the Algonkin tribes.
Their home country, when discovered, was the region around and north of
Delaware Bay. They are comprised in three gentes, as follows:

      I. Wolf.       Took′-seat.       Round Paw.
     II. Turtle.     Poke-koo-un′-go.  Crawling.
    III. Turkey.     Pul-la′-ook.      Non-chewing.

These subdivisions are in the nature of phratries, because each is
composed of twelve sub-gentes, each having some of the attributes
of a gens.[178] The names are personal, and mostly, if not in every
case, those of females. As this feature was unusual I worked it out
as minutely as possible at the Delaware reservation in Kansas, in
1860, with the aid of William Adams, an educated Delaware. It proved
impossible to find the origin of these subdivisions, but they seemed to
be the several eponymous ancestors from whom the members of the gentes
respectively derived their descent. It shows also the natural growth of
the phratries from the gentes.

Descent among the Delawares is in the female line, which renders
probable its ancient universality in this form in the Algonkin tribes.
The office of sachem was hereditary in the gens, but elective among its
members, who had the power both to elect and depose. Property also was
hereditary in the gens. Originally the members of the three original
gentes could not intermarry in their own gens; but in recent years the
prohibition has been confined to the sub-gentes. Those of the same
name in the Wolf gens, now partially become a phratry, for example,
cannot intermarry, but those of different names marry. The practice
of naming children into the gens of their father also prevails among
the Delawares, and has introduced the same confusion of descents found
among the Shawnees and Miamis. American civilization and intercourse
necessarily administered a shock to Indian institutions under which the
ethnic life of the people is gradually breaking down.

Examples of succession in office afford the most satisfactory
illustrations of the aboriginal law of descent. A Delaware woman, after
stating to the author that she, with her children, belonged to the Wolf
gens, and her husband to the Turtle, remarked that when Captain Ketchum
(Tä-whe′-lä-na), late head chief or sachem of the Turtle gens, died, he
was succeeded by his nephew, John Conner (Tä-tä-ne′-shă), a son of one
of the sisters of the deceased sachem, who was also of the Turtle gens.
The decedent left a son, but he was of another gens and consequently
incapable of succeeding. With the Delawares, as with the Iroquois, the
office passed from brother to brother, or from uncle to nephew, because
descent was in the female line.

2. Munsees. The Munsees are an offshoot from the Delawares, and have
the same gentes, the Wolf, the Turtle and the Turkey. Descent is in the
female line, intermarriage in the gens is not permitted, and the office
of sachem, as well as property, are hereditary in the gens.

3. Mohegans. All of the New England Indians, south of the river
Kennebeck, of whom the Mohegans formed a part, were closely affiliated
in language, and could understand each other’s dialects. Since the
Mohegans are organized in gentes, there is a presumption that the
Pequots, Narragansetts, and other minor bands were not only similarly
organized, but had the same gentes. The Mohegans have the same three
with the Delawares, the Wolf, the Turtle and the Turkey, each of
which is composed of a number of gentes. It proves their immediate
connection with the Delawares and Munsees by descent, and also reveals,
as elsewhere stated, the process of subdivision by which an original
gens breaks up into several, which remain united in a phratry. In
this case also it may be seen how the phratry arises naturally under
gentile institutions. It is rare among the American aborigines to
find preserved the evidence of the segmentation of original gentes as
clearly as in the present case.

The Mohegan phratries stand out more conspicuously than those of any
other tribe of the American aborigines, because they cover the gentes
of each, and the phratries must be stated to explain the classification
of the gentes; but we know less about them than of those of the
Iroquois. They are the following:

        I. _Wolf Phratry. Took-se-tuk′._

    1. Wolf.  2. Bear.  3. Dog.  4. Opossum.

          II. _Turtle Phratry.  Tone-bä′-o._

    1. Little Turtle.  2. Mud Turtle.  3. Great Turtle.
                       4. Yellow Eel.

                 III. _Turkey Phratry._

    1. Turkey          2. Crane.        3. Chicken.[179]

Descent is in the female line, intermarriage in the gens is forbidden,
and the office of sachem is hereditary in the gens, the office passing
either from brother to brother, or from uncle to nephew. Among the
Pequots and Narragansetts descent was in the female line, as I learned
from a Narragansett woman whom I met in Kansas.

4. Abenakis. The name of this tribe, Wä-be-nă′-kee, signifies “Rising
Sun People.”[180] They affiliate more closely with the Micmacs than
with the New England Indians south of the Kennebeck. They have fourteen
gentes, as follows:

     1. Wolf.           2. Wild Cat. (Black.)  3. Bear.
     4. Snake.          5. Spotted Animal.     6. Beaver.
     7. Cariboo.        8. Sturgeon.           9. Muskrat
    10. Pigeon Hawk.   11. Squirrel.          12. Spotted Frog.
    13. Crane.         14. Porcupine.[181]

Descent is now in the male line, intermarriage in the gens was
anciently prohibited, but the prohibition has now lost most of its
force. The office of sachem was hereditary in the gens. It will be
noticed that several of the above gentes are the same as among the
Ojibwas.

VI. _Athapasco-Apache Tribes._

Whether or not the Athapascans of Hudson’s Bay Territory, and the
Apaches of New Mexico, who are subdivisions of an original stock, are
organized in gentes has not been definitely ascertained. When in the
former territory, in 1861, I made an effort to determine the question
among the Hare and Red Knife Athapascans, but was unsuccessful for want
of competent interpreters; and yet it seems probable that if the system
existed, traces of it would have been discovered even with imperfect
means of inquiry. The late Robert Kennicott made a similar attempt
for the author among the A-chä′-o-ten-ne, or Slave Lake Athapascans,
with no better success. He found special regulations with respect to
marriage and the descent of the office of sachem, which seemed to
indicate the presence of gentes, but he could not obtain satisfactory
information. The Kutchin (Louchoux) of the Yukon river region are
Athapascans. In a letter to the author by the late George Gibbs, he
remarks: “In a letter which I have from a gentleman at Fort Simpson,
Makenzie river, it is mentioned that among the Louchoux or Kutchin
there are three grades or classes of society—undoubtedly a mistake for
totem, though the totems probably differ in rank, as he goes on to
say—that a man does not marry into his own class, but takes a wife from
some other; and that a chief from the highest may marry with a woman of
the lowest without loss of caste. The children belong to the grade of
the mother; and the members of the same grade in the different tribes
do not war with each other.”

Among the Kolushes of the Northwest Coast, who affiliate linguistically
though not closely with the Athapascans, the organization into gentes
exists. Mr. Gallatin remarks that they are “like our own Indians,
divided into tribes or clans; a distinction of which, according to
Mr. Hale, there is no trace among the Indians of Oregon. The names of
the tribes [gentes] are those of animals, namely: Bear, Eagle, Crow,
Porpoise and Wolf.... The right of succession is in the female line,
from uncle to nephew, the principal chief excepted, who is generally
the most powerful of the family.”[182]

VII. _Indian Tribes of the Northwest Coast._

In some of these tribes, beside the Kolushes, the gentile organization
prevails. “Before leaving Puget’s Sound,” observes Mr. Gibbs, in a
letter to the author, “I was fortunate enough to meet representatives
of three principal families of what we call the Northern Indians, the
inhabitants of the Northwest Coast, extending from the Upper end of
Vancouver’s Island into the Russian Possessions, and the confines of
the Esquimaux. From them I ascertained positively that the totemic
system exists at least among these three. The families I speak of are,
beginning at the northwest, Tlinkitt, commonly called the Stikeens,
after one of their bands; the Tlaidas; and Chimsyans, called by
Gallatin, Weas. There are four totems common to these, the Whale, the
Wolf, the Eagle, and the Crow. Neither of these can marry into the same
totem, although in a different nation or family. What is remarkable
is that these nations constitute entirely different families. I mean
by this that their languages are essentially different, having no
perceptible analogy.” Mr. Dall, in his work on Alaska, written still
later, remarks that “the Tlinkets are divided into four totems: the
Raven (Yehl), the Wolf (Kanu′kh), the Whale, and the Eagle (Chethl)....
Opposite totems only can marry, and the child usually takes the
mother’s totem.”[183]

Mr. Hubert H. Bancroft presents their organization still more fully,
showing two phratries, and the gentes belonging to each. He remarks of
the Thlinkeets that the “nation is separated into two great divisions
or clans, one of which is called the Wolf and the other the Raven....
The Raven trunk is again divided into sub-clans, called the Frog, the
Goose, the Sea-Lion, the Owl, and the Salmon. The Wolf family comprises
the Bear, Eagle, Dolphin, Shark, and Alca.... Tribes of the same clan
may not war on each other, but at the same time members of the same
clan may not marry with each other. Thus, the young Wolf warrior must
seek his mate among the Ravens.”[184]

The Eskimos do not belong to the Ganowánian family. Their occupation of
the American continent in comparison with that of the latter family was
recent or modern. They are also without gentes.

VIII. _Salish, Sahaptin and Kootenay Tribes._

The tribes of the Valley of the Columbia, of whom those above named
represent the principal stocks, are without the gentile organization.
Our distinguished philologists, Horatio Hale and the late George
Gibbs, both of whom devoted special attention to the subject, failed
to discover any traces of the system among them. There are strong
reasons for believing that this remarkable area was the nursery land
of the Ganowánian family, from which, as the initial point of their
migrations, they spread abroad over both divisions of the continent.
It seems probable, therefore, that their ancestors possessed the
organization into gentes, and that it fell into decay and finally
disappeared.

IX. _Shoshonee Tribes._

The Comanches of Texas, together with the Ute tribes, the Bonnaks, the
Shoshonees, and some other tribes, belong to this stock. Mathew Walker,
a Wyandote half-blood, informed the author, in 1859, that he had lived
among the Comanches, and that they had the following gentes:

    1. Wolf.  2. Bear.    3. Elk.
    4. Deer.  5. Gopher.  6. Antelope.

If the Comanches are organized in gentes, there is a presumption that
the other tribes of this stock are the same.

This completes our review of the social system of the Indian tribes of
North America, north of New Mexico. The greater portion of the tribes
named were in the Lower Status of barbarism at the epoch of European
discovery, and the remainder in the Upper Status of savagery. From the
wide and nearly universal prevalence of the organization into gentes,
its ancient universality among them with descent in the female line
may with reason be assumed. Their system was purely social, having
the gens as its unit, and the phratry, tribe and confederacy as the
remaining members of the organic series. These four successive stages
of integration and re-integration express the whole of their experience
in the growth of the idea of government. Since the principal Aryan
and Semitic tribes had the same organic series when they emerged from
barbarism, the system was substantially universal in ancient society,
and inferentially had a common origin. The punaluan group, hereafter
to be described more fully in connection with the growth of the idea
of the family, evidently gave birth to the gentes, so that the Aryan,
Semitic, Uralian, Turanian and Ganowánian families of mankind point
with a distinctiveness seemingly unmistakable to a common punaluan
stock, with the organization into gentes engrafted upon it, from which
each and all were derived, and finally differentiated into families.
This conclusion, I believe, will ultimately enforce its own acceptance,
when future investigation has developed and verified the facts on a
minuter scale. Such a great organic series, able to hold mankind in
society through the latter part of the period of savagery, through the
entire period of barbarism, and into the early part of the period of
civilization, does not arise by accident, but had a natural development
from pre-existing elements. Rationally and rigorously interpreted, it
seems probable that it can be made demonstrative of the unity of origin
of all the families of mankind who possessed the organization into
gentes.

X. _Village Indians._

1. Moqui Pueblo Indians. The Moqui tribes are still in undisturbed
possession of their ancient communal houses, seven in number, near
the Little Colorado in Arizona, once a part of New Mexico. They are
living under their ancient institutions, and undoubtedly at the present
moment fairly represent the type of Village Indian life which prevailed
from Zuñi to Cuzco at the epoch of Discovery. Zuñi, Acoma, Taos, and
several other New Mexican pueblos are the same structures which were
found there by Coronado in 1540-1542. Notwithstanding their apparent
accessibility we know in reality but little concerning their mode of
life or their domestic institutions. No systematic investigation has
ever been made. What little information has found its way into print is
general and accidental.

The Moquis are organized in gentes, of which they have nine, as follows:

    1. Deer.         2. Sand.           3. Rain.
    4. Bear.         5. Hare.           6. Prairie Wolf.
    7. Rattlesnake.  8. Tobacco Plant.  9. Reed Grass.

Dr. Ten Broeck, Assistant Surgeon, U. S. A., furnished to Mr.
Schoolcraft the Moqui legend of their origin which he obtained at
one of their villages. They said that “many years ago their Great
Mother[185] brought from her home in the West nine races of men in the
following form. First, the Deer race; second, the Sand race; third,
the Water [Rain] race; fourth, the Bear race; fifth, the Hare race;
sixth, the Prairie Wolf race; seventh, the Rattlesnake race; eighth,
the Tobacco Plant race; and ninth, the Reed Grass race. Having planted
them on the spot where their villages now stand, she transformed them
into men who built up the present pueblos; and the distinction of race
is still kept up. One told me that he was of the Sand race, another,
the Deer, etc. They are firm believers in metempsychosis, and say that
when they die they will resolve into their original forms, and become
bears, deers, etc., again.... The government is hereditary, but does
not necessarily descend to the son of the incumbent; for if they prefer
any other blood relative, he is chosen.”[186] Having passed, in this
case, from the Lower into the Middle Status of barbarism, and found the
organization into gentes in full development, its adaptation to their
changed condition is demonstrated. Its existence among the Village
Indians in general is rendered probable; but from this point forward
in the remainder of North, and in the whole of South America, we are
left without definite information except with respect to the Lagunas.
It shows how incompletely the work has been done in American Ethnology,
that the unit of their social system has been but partially discovered,
and its significance not understood. Still, there are traces of it in
the early Spanish authors, and direct knowledge of it in a few later
writers, which when brought together will leave but little doubt
of the ancient universal prevalence of the gentile organizations
throughout the Indian family.

There are current traditions in many gentes, like that of the Moquis,
of the transformation of their first progenitors from the animal, or
inanimate object, which became the symbol of the gens, into men and
women. Thus, the Crane gens of the Ojibwas have a legend that a pair
of cranes flew over the wide area from the Gulf to the Great Lakes
and from the prairies of the Mississippi to the Atlantic in quest of
a place where subsistence was most abundant, and finally selected
the Rapids on the outlet of Lake Superior, since celebrated for its
fisheries. Having alighted on the bank of the river and folded their
wings the Great Spirit immediately changed them into a man and woman,
who became the progenitors of the Crane gens of the Ojibwas. There are
a number of gentes in the different tribes who abstain from eating the
animal whose name they bear; but this is far from universal.

2. Lagunas. The Laguna Pueblo Indians are organized in gentes, with
descent in the female line, as appears from an address of Rev. Samuel
Gorman before the Historical Society of New Mexico in 1860. “Each town
is classed into tribes or families, and each of these groups is named
after some animal, bird, herb, timber, planet, or one of the four
elements. In the pueblo of Laguna, which is one of above one thousand
inhabitants, there are seventeen of these tribes; some are called bear,
some deer, some rattlesnake, some corn, some wolf, some water, etc.,
etc. The children are of the same tribe as their mother. And, according
to ancient custom, two persons of the same tribe are forbidden to
marry; but, recently, this custom begins to be less rigorously observed
than anciently.”

“Their land is held in common, as the property of the community, but
after a person cultivates a lot he has a personal claim to it, which
he can sell to any one of the same community; or else when he dies it
belongs to his widow or daughters; or, if he were a single man, it
remains in his father’s family.”[187] That wife or daughter inherit
from the father is doubtful.

3. Aztecs, Tezcucans and Tlacopans. The question of the organization of
these, and the remaining Nahuatlac tribes of Mexico, in gentes will be
considered in the next ensuing chapter.

4. Mayas of Yucatan. Herrera makes frequent reference to the “kindred,”
and in such a manner with regard to the tribes in Mexico, Central
and South America as to imply the existence of a body of persons
organized on the basis of consanguinity much more numerous than would
be found apart from gentes. Thus: “He that killed a free man was to
make satisfaction to the children and kindred.”[188] It was spoken
of the aborigines of Nicaragua, and had it been of the Iroquois,
among whom the usage was the same, the term _kindred_ would have been
equivalent to _gens_. And again, speaking generally of the Maya Indians
of Yucatan, he remarks that “when any satisfaction was to be made
for damages, if he who was adjudged to pay was like to be reduced to
poverty, the kindred contributed.”[189] In this another gentile usage
may be recognized. Again, speaking of the Aztecs; “if they were guilty,
no favor or kindred could save them from death.”[190] One more citation
to the same effect may be made, applied to the Florida Indians who
were organized in gentes. He observes “that they were extravagantly
fond of their children, and cherished them, the parents and kindred
lamenting such as died a whole year.”[191] The early observers noticed,
as a peculiarity of Indian society, that large numbers of persons
were bound together by the bond of kin, and therefore the group came
to be mentioned as “the kindred.” But they did not carry the scrutiny
far enough to discover, what was probably the truth, that the kindred
formed a gens, and, as such, the unit of their social system.

Herrera remarks further of the Mayas, that “they were wont to observe
their pedigrees very much, and therefore thought themselves all
related, and were helpful to one another.... They did not marry
mothers, or sisters-in-law, _nor any that bore the same name_ as their
father, which was looked upon as unlawful.”[192] The pedigree of an
Indian under their system of consanguinity could have no significance
apart from a gens; but leaving this out of view, there was no possible
way, under Indian institutions, by which a father and his children
could bear the same _name_ except through a gens, which conferred
a common gentile name upon all its members. It would also require
descent in the male line to bring father and children into the same
gens. The statement shows, moreover, that intermarriage in the gens
among the Mayas was prohibited. Assuming the correctness of Herrera’s
words, it is proof conclusive of the existence of gentes among the
Mayas, with descent in the male line. Tylor, in his valuable work on
the _Early History of Mankind_, which is a repository of widely-drawn
and well-digested ethnological information, cites the same fact from
another source, with the following remarks: “The analogy of the North
American Indian custom is therefore with that of the Australian in
making clanship on the female side a bar to marriage, but if we go down
further south into Central America, the reverse custom, as in China,
makes its appearance. Diego de Landa says of the people of Yucatan,
that no one took a wife of his name, on the father’s side, for this was
a very vile thing among them; but they might marry cousins german on
the mother’s side.”[193]

XI. _South American Indian Tribes._

Traces of the gens have been found in all parts of South America, as
well as the actual presence of the Ganowánian system of consanguinity,
but the subject has not been fully investigated. Speaking of the
numerous tribes of the Andes brought by the Incas under a species of
confederation, Herrera observes that “this variety of tongues proceeded
from the nations being divided into races, tribes, or clans.”[194]
Here in the clans the existence of gentes is recognized. Mr. Tylor,
discussing the rules with respect to marriage and descent, remarks
that “further south, below the Isthmus, both the clanship and the
prohibition re-appear on the female side. Bernau says that among the
Arrawaks of British Guiana, ‘Caste is derived from the mother, and
children are allowed to marry into their father’s family, but not
into that of their mother.’ Lastly, Father Martin Dobrizhoffer says
that the Guaranis avoid, as highly criminal, marriage with the most
distant relations; and speaking of the Abipones, he makes the following
statement: ... ‘The Abipones, instructed by nature and the example of
their ancestors, abhor the very thought of marrying any one related to
them by the most distant tie of relationship.’”[195] These references
to the social system of the aborigines are vague; but in the light of
the facts already presented the existence of gentes with descent in the
female line, and with intermarriage in the gens prohibited, renders
them intelligible. Brett remarks of the Indian tribes in Guiana that
they “are divided into families, each of which has a distinct name, as
the Siwidi, Karuafudi, Onisidi, etc. Unlike our families, these all
descend in the female line, and no individual of either sex is allowed
to marry another of the same family name. Thus a woman of the Siwidi
family bears the same name as her mother, but neither her father nor
her husband can be of that family. Her children and the children of her
daughters will also be called Siwidi, but both her sons and daughters
are prohibited from an alliance with any individual bearing the same
name; though they may marry into the family of their father, if they
choose. These customs are strictly observed, and any breach of them
would be considered as wicked.”[196] In the _family_ of this writer
may at once be recognized the gens in its archaic form. All the South
American tribes above named, with the exception of the Andean, were
when discovered either in the Lower Status of barbarism, or in the
Status of savagery. Many of the Peruvian tribes concentrated under the
government established by the Inca Village Indians were in the Lower
Status of barbarism, if an opinion may be formed from the imperfect
description of their domestic institutions found in Garcillasso de la
Vega.

To the Village Indians of North and South America, whose indigenous
culture had advanced them far into, and near the end of, the Middle
Period of barbarism, our attention naturally turns for the transitional
history of the gentes. The archaic constitution of the gens has been
shown; its latest phases remain to be presented in the gentes of the
Greeks and Romans; but the intermediate changes, both of descent and
inheritance, which occurred in the Middle Period, are essential to a
complete history of the gentile organization. Our information is quite
ample with respect to the earlier and later condition of this great
institution, but defective with respect to the transitional stage.
Where the gentes are found in any tribe of mankind in their latest
form, their remote ancestors must have possessed them in the archaic
form; but historical criticism demands affirmative proofs rather than
deductions. These proofs once existed among the Village Indians. We
are now well assured that their system of government was social and
not political. The upper members of the series, namely, the tribe and
the confederacy, meet us at many points; with positive evidence of the
gens, the unit of the system, in a number of the tribes of Village
Indians. But we are not able to place our hands upon the gentes among
the Village Indians in general with the same precise information
afforded by the tribes in the Lower Status of barbarism. The golden
opportunity was presented to the Spanish conquerers and colonists, and
lost, from apparent inability to understand a condition of society from
which civilized man had so far departed in his onward progress. Without
a knowledge of the unit of their social system, which impressed its
character upon the whole organism of society, the Spanish histories
fail entirely in the portrayal of their governmental institutions.

A glance at the remains of ancient architecture in Central America
and Peru sufficiently proves that the Middle Period of barbarism was
one of great progress in human development, of growing knowledge, and
of expanding intelligence. It was followed by a still more remarkable
period in the Eastern hemisphere after the invention of the process of
making iron had given that final great impulse to human progress which
was to bear a portion of mankind into civilization. Our appreciation
of the grandeur of man’s career in the Later Period of barbarism, when
inventions and discoveries multiplied with such rapidity, would be
intensified by an accurate knowledge of the condition of society in
the Middle Period, so remarkably exemplified by the Village Indians.
By a great effort, attended with patient labor, it may yet be possible
to recover a large portion at least of the treasures of knowledge
which have been allowed to disappear. Upon our present information
the conclusion is warrantable that the American Indian tribes were
universally organized in gentes at the epoch of European discovery, the
few exceptions found not being sufficient to disturb the general rule.



CHAPTER VII.

THE AZTEC CONFEDERACY.

    MISCONCEPTION OF AZTEC SOCIETY.—CONDITION OF
    ADVANCEMENT.—NAHUATLAC TRIBES.—THEIR SETTLEMENT IN
    MEXICO.—PUEBLO OF MEXICO FOUNDED, A. D., 1325.—AZTEC
    CONFEDERACY ESTABLISHED, A. D., 1426.—EXTENT OF TERRITORIAL
    DOMINATION.—PROBABLE NUMBER OF THE PEOPLE.—WHETHER OR NOT
    THE AZTECS WERE ORGANIZED IN GENTES AND PHRATRIES.—THE
    COUNCIL OF CHIEFS.—ITS PROBABLE FUNCTIONS.—OFFICE
    HELD BY MONTEZUMA.—ELECTIVE IN TENURE.—DEPOSITION OF
    MONTEZUMA.—PROBABLE FUNCTIONS OF THE OFFICE.—AZTEC
    INSTITUTIONS ESSENTIALLY DEMOCRATICAL—THE GOVERNMENT A
    MILITARY DEMOCRACY.


The Spanish adventurers, who captured the Pueblo of Mexico, adopted the
erroneous theory that the Aztec government was a monarchy, analogous in
essential respects to existing monarchies in Europe. This opinion was
adopted generally by the early Spanish writers, without investigating
minutely the structure and principles of the Aztec social system. A
terminology not in agreement with their institutions came in with
this misconception which has vitiated the historical narrative nearly
as completely as though it were, in the main, a studied fabrication.
With the capture of the only stronghold the Aztecs possessed, their
governmental fabric was destroyed, Spanish rule was substituted in its
place, and the subject of their internal organization and polity was
allowed substantially to pass into oblivion.[197]

The Aztecs and their confederate tribes were ignorant of iron and
consequently without iron tools; they had no money, and traded by
barter of commodities; but they worked the native metals, cultivated
by irrigation, manufactured coarse fabrics of cotton, constructed
joint-tenement houses of adobe-bricks and of stone, and made
earthenware of excellent quality. They had, therefore, attained to the
Middle Status of barbarism. They still held their lands in common,
lived in large households composed of a number of related families;
and, as there are strong reasons for believing, practiced communism in
living in the household. It is rendered reasonably certain that they
had but one prepared meal each day, a dinner; at which they separated,
the men eating first and by themselves, and the women and children
afterwards. Having neither tables nor chairs for dinner service
they had not learned to eat their single daily meal in the manner
of civilized nations. These features of their social condition show
sufficiently their relative status of advancement.

In connection with the Village Indians of other parts of Mexico and
Central America, and of Peru, they afforded the best exemplification
of this condition of ancient society then existing on the earth. They
represented one of the great stages of progress toward civilization
in which the institutions derived from a previous ethnical period are
seen in higher advancement, and which were to be transmitted, in the
course of human experience, to an ethnical condition still higher, and
undergo still further development before civilization was possible. But
the Village Indians were not destined to attain the Upper Status of
barbarism so well represented by the Homeric Greeks.

The Indian pueblos in the valley of Mexico revealed to Europeans a lost
condition of ancient society, which was so remarkable and peculiar that
it aroused at the time an insatiable curiosity. More volumes have been
written, in the proportion of ten to one, upon the Mexican aborigines
and the Spanish Conquest, than upon any other people of the same
advancement, or upon any event of the same importance. And yet, there
is no people concerning whose institutions and plan of life so little
is accurately known. The remarkable spectacle presented so inflamed
the imagination that romance swept the field, and has held it to the
present hour. The failure to ascertain the structure of Aztec society
which resulted was a serious loss to the history of mankind. It should
not be made a cause of reproach to any one, but rather for deep regret.
Even that which has been written, with such painstaking industry, may
prove useful in some future attempt to reconstruct the history of
the Aztec confederacy. Certain facts remain of a positive kind from
which other facts may be deduced; so that it is not improbable that a
well-directed original investigation may yet recover, measurably at
least, the essential features of the Aztec social system.

The “kingdom of Mexico” as it stands in the early histories, and the
“empire of Mexico” as it appears in the later, is a fiction of the
imagination. At the time there was a seeming foundation for describing
the government as a monarchy, in the absence of a correct knowledge of
their institutions; but the misconception can no longer be defended.
That which the Spaniards found was simply a confederacy of three Indian
tribes, of which the counterpart existed in all parts of the continent,
and they had no occasion in their descriptions to advance a step beyond
this single fact. The government was administered by a council of
chiefs, with the co-operation of a general commander of the military
bands. It was a government of two powers; the civil being represented
by the council, and the military by a principal war-chief. Since the
institutions of the confederate tribes were essentially democratical,
the government may be called a military democracy, if a designation
more special than confederacy is required.

Three tribes, the Aztecs or Mexicans, the Tezcucans and the Tlacopans,
were united in the Aztec confederacy, which gives the two upper
members of the organic social series. Whether or not they possessed
the first and the second, namely, the gens and the phratry, does not
appear in a definite form in any of the Spanish writers; but they have
vaguely described certain institutions which can only be understood
by supplying the lost members of the series. Whilst the phratry is
not essential, it is otherwise with the gens, because it is the unit
upon which the social system rests. Without entering the vast and
unthreadable labyrinth of Aztec affairs as they now stand historically,
I shall venture to invite attention to a few particulars only of the
Aztec social system, which may tend to illustrate its real character.
Before doing this, the relations of the confederated to surrounding
tribes should be noticed.

The Aztecs were one of seven kindred tribes who had migrated from the
north and settled in and near the valley of Mexico; and who were among
the historical tribes of that country at the epoch of the Spanish
Conquest. They called themselves collectively the Nahuatlacs in their
traditions. Acosta, who visited Mexico in 1585, and whose work was
published at Seville in 1589, has given the current native tradition of
their migrations, one after the other, from Aztlan, with their names
and places of settlement. He states the order of their arrival as
follows: 1. Sochimilcas, “Nation of the Seeds of Flowers,” who settled
upon Lake Xochimilco, on the south slope of the valley of Mexico; 2.
Chalcas, “People of Mouths,” who came long after the former and settled
near them, on Lake Chalco; 3. Tepanecans, “People of the Bridge,” who
settled at Azcopozalco, west of Lake Tezcuco, on the western slope
of the valley; 4. Culhuas, “A Crooked People,” who settled on the
east side of Lake Tezcuco, and were afterwards known as Tezcucans; 5.
Tlatluicans, “Men of the Sierra,” who, finding the valley appropriated
around the lake, passed over the Sierra southward and settled upon the
other side; 6. Tlascalans, “Men of Bread,” who, after living for a
time with the Tepanecans, finally settled beyond the valley eastward,
at Tlascala; 7. The Aztecs, who came last and occupied the site of the
present city of Mexico.[198] Acosta further observes that they came
“from far countries which lie toward the north, where now they have
found a kingdom which they call New Mexico.”[199] The same tradition is
given by Herrera,[200] and also by Clavigero.[201] It will be noticed
that the Tlacopans are not mentioned. They were, in all probability,
a subdivision of the Tepanecans who remained in the original area of
that tribe, while the remainder seem to have removed to a territory
immediately south of the Tlascalans, where they were found under the
name of the Tepeacas. The latter had the same legend of the seven
caves, and spoke a dialect of the Nahuatlac language.[202]

This tradition embodies one significant fact of a kind that could not
have been invented; namely, that the seven tribes were of immediate
common origin, the fact being confirmed by their dialects; and a second
fact of importance, that they came from the north. It shows that they
were originally one people, who had fallen into seven and more tribes
by the natural process of segmentation. Moreover, it was this same fact
which rendered the Aztec confederacy possible as well as probable, a
common language being the essential basis of such organizations.

The Aztecs found the best situations in the valley occupied, and
after several changes of position they finally settled upon a small
expanse of dry land in the midst of a marsh bordered with fields of
pedregal and with natural ponds. Here they founded the celebrated
pueblo of Mexico (Tenochtitlan), A. D. 1325, according to Clavigero,
one hundred and ninety-six years prior to the Spanish Conquest.[203]
They were few in number and poor in condition. But fortunately for
them, the outlet of Lakes Xochimilco and Chalco and rivulets from the
western hills flowed past their site into Lake Tezcuco. Having the
sagacity to perceive the advantages of the location they succeeded,
by means of causeways and dikes, in surrounding their pueblo with
an artificial pond of large extent, the waters being furnished from
the sources named; and the level of Lake Tezcuco being higher then
than at present, it gave them, when the whole work was completed,
the most secure position of any tribe in the valley. The mechanical
engineering by which they accomplished this result was one of the
greatest achievements of the Aztecs, and one without which they would
not probably have risen above the level of the surrounding tribes.
Independence and prosperity followed, and in time a controlling
influence over the valley tribes. Such was the manner, and so recent
the time of founding the pueblo according to Aztec traditions which may
be accepted as substantially trustworthy.

At the epoch of the Spanish Conquest five of the seven tribes, namely,
the Aztecs, Tezcucans, Tlacopans, Sochimilcas, and Chalcans resided in
the valley, which was an area of quite limited dimensions, about equal
to the state of Rhode Island. It was a mountain or upland basin having
no outlet, oval in form, being longest from north to south, one hundred
and twenty miles in circuit, and embracing about sixteen hundred square
miles excluding the surface covered by water. The valley, as described,
is surrounded by a series of hills, one range rising above another
with depressions between, encompassing the valley with a mountain
barrier. The tribes named resided in some thirty pueblos, more or
less, of which that of Mexico was the largest. There is no evidence
that any considerable portion of these tribes had colonized outside of
the valley and the adjacent hill-slopes; but, on the contrary, there
is abundant evidence that the remainder of modern Mexico was then
occupied by numerous tribes who spoke languages different from the
Nahuatlac, and the majority of whom were independent. The Tlascalans,
the Cholulans, a supposed subdivision of the former, the Tepeacas, the
Huexotzincos, the Meztitlans, a supposed subdivision of the Tezcucans,
and the Tlatluicans were the remaining Nahuatlac tribes living without
the valley of Mexico, all of whom were independent excepting the
last, and the Tepeacas. A large number of other tribes, forming some
seventeen territorial groups, more or less, and speaking as many stock
languages, held the remainder of Mexico. They present, in their state
of disintegration and independence, a nearly exact repetition of the
tribes of the United States and British America, at the time of their
discovery, a century or more later.

Prior to A. D. 1426, when the Aztec confederacy was formed, very
little had occurred in the affairs of the valley tribes of historical
importance. They were disunited and belligerent, and without influence
beyond their immediate localities. About this time the superior
position of the Aztecs began to manifest its results in a preponderance
of numbers and of strength. Under their war-chief, Itzcoatl, the
previous supremacy of the Tezcucans and Tlacopans was overthrown, and
a league or confederacy was established as a consequence of their
previous wars against each other. It was an alliance between the three
tribes, offensive and defensive, with stipulations for the division
among them, in certain proportions, of the spoils, and the after
tributes of subjugated tribes.[204] These tributes, which consisted of
the manufactured fabrics and horticultural products of the villages
subdued, seem to have been enforced with system, and with rigor of
exaction.

The plan of organization of this confederacy has been lost. From
the absence of particulars it is now difficult to determine whether
it was simply a league to be continued or dissolved at pleasure; or
a consolidated organization, like that of the Iroquois, in which
the parts were adjusted to each other in permanent and definite
relations. Each tribe was independent in whatever related to local
self-government; but the three were externally one people in whatever
related to aggression or defense. While each tribe had its own council
of chiefs, and its own head war-chief, the war-chief of the Aztecs was
the commander-in-chief of the confederate bands. This may be inferred
from the fact that the Tezcucans and Tlacopans had a voice either
in the election or in the confirmation of the Aztec war-chief. The
acquisition of the chief command by the Aztecs tends to show that their
influence predominated in establishing the terms upon which the tribes
confederated.

Nezahualcojotl had been deposed, or at least dispossessed of his
office, as principal war-chief of the Tezcucans, to which he was at
this time (1426) restored by Aztec procurement. The event may be taken
as the elate of the formation of the confederacy or league whichever it
was.

Before discussing the limited number of facts which tend to illustrate
the character of this organization, a brief reference should be made to
what the confederacy accomplished in acquiring territorial domination
during the short period of its existence.

From A. D. 1426 to 1520, a period of ninety-four years, the confederacy
was engaged in frequent wars with adjacent tribes, and particularly
with the feeble Village Indians southward from the valley of Mexico
to the Pacific, and thence eastward well toward Guatemala. They began
with those nearest in position whom they overcame, through superior
numbers and concentrated action, and subjected to tribute. The villages
in this area were numerous but small, consisting in many cases of a
single large structure of adobe-brick or of stone, and in some cases of
several such structures grouped together. These joint-tenement houses
interposed serious hinderances to Aztec conquest, but they did not
prove insuperable. These forays were continued from time to time for
the avowed object of gathering spoil, imposing tribute, and capturing
prisoners for sacrifice;[205] until the principal tribes within the
area named, with some exceptions, were subdued and made tributary,
including the scattered villages of the Totonacs near the present Vera
Cruz.

No attempt was made to incorporate these tribes in the Aztec
confederacy, which the barrier of language rendered impossible under
their institutions. They were left under the government of their own
chiefs, and to the practice of their own usages and customs. In some
cases a collector of tribute resided among them. The barren results
of these conquests reveal the actual character of their institutions.
A domination of the strong over the weak for no other object than to
enforce an unwilling tribute, did not even tend to the formation of a
nation. If organized in gentes, there was no way for an individual to
become a member of the government except through a gens, and no way for
the admission of a gens except by its incorporation among the Aztec,
Tezcucan, or Tlacopan gentes. The plan ascribed to Romulus of removing
the gentes of conquered Latin tribes to Rome might have been resorted
to by the Aztec confederacy with respect to the tribes overrun; but
they were not sufficiently advanced to form such a conception, even
though the barrier of language could have been obviated. Neither
could colonists for the same reason, if sent among them, have so far
assimilated the conquered tribes as to prepare them for incorporation
in the Aztec social system. As it was, the confederacy gained no
strength by the terrorism it created; or by holding these tribes under
burdens, inspired with enmity and ever ready to revolt. It seems,
however, that they used the military bands of subjugated tribes in
some cases, and shared with them the spoils. All the Aztecs could do,
after forming the confederacy, was to expand it over the remaining
Nahuatlac tribes. This they were unable to accomplish. The Xochimilcas
and Chalcans were not constituent members of the confederacy, but they
enjoyed a nominal independence, though tributary.

This is about all that can now be discovered of the material basis of
the so-called kingdom or empire of the Aztecs. The confederacy was
confronted by hostile and independent tribes on the west, northwest,
northeast, east, and southeast sides: as witness, the Mechoacans on the
west, the Otomies on the northwest, (scattered bands of the Otomies
near the valley had been placed under tribute), the Chichimecs or
wild tribes north of the Otomies, the Meztitlans on the northeast,
the Tlascalans on the east, the Cholulans and Huexotzincos on the
southeast, and beyond them the tribes of the Tabasco, the tribes of
Chiapas, and the Zapotecs. In these several directions the dominion of
the Aztec confederacy did not extend a hundred miles beyond the valley
of Mexico, a portion of which surrounding area was undoubtedly neutral
ground separating the confederacy from perpetual enemies. Out of such
limited materials the kingdom of Mexico of the Spanish chronicles was
fabricated, and afterwards magnified into the Aztec empire of current
history.

A few words seem to be necessary concerning the population of the
valley and of the pueblo of Mexico. No means exist for ascertaining the
number of the people in the five Nahuatlac tribes who inhabited the
valley. Any estimate must be conjectural. As a conjecture then, based
upon what is known of their horticulture, their means of subsistence,
their institutions, their limited area, and not forgetting the tribute
they received, two hundred and fifty thousand persons in the aggregate
would probably be an excessive estimate. It would give about a hundred
and sixty persons to the square mile, equal to nearly twice the present
average population of the state of New York, and about equal to the
average population of Rhode Island. It is difficult to perceive what
sufficient reason can be assigned for so large a number of inhabitants
in all the villages within the valley, said to have been from thirty
to forty. Those who claim a higher number will be bound to show how
a barbarous people, without flocks and herds, and without field
agriculture, could have sustained in equal areas a larger number of
inhabitants than a civilized people can now maintain armed with these
advantages. It cannot be shown for the simple reason that it could not
have been true. Out of this population thirty thousand may, perhaps, be
assigned to the pueblo of Mexico.[206]

It will be unnecessary to discuss the position and relations of the
valley tribes beyond the suggestions made. The Aztec monarchy should
be dismissed from American aboriginal history, not only as delusive,
but as a misrepresentation of the Indians, who had neither developed
nor invented monarchical institutions. The government they formed was
a confederacy of tribes, and nothing more; and probably not equal in
plan and symmetry with that of the Iroquois. In dealing with this
organization, War-chief, Sachem, and Chief will be sufficient to
distinguish their official persons.

The pueblo of Mexico was the largest in America. Romantically situated
in the midst of an artificial lake, its large joint-tenement houses
plastered over with gypsum, which made them a brilliant white, and
approached by causeways, it presented to the Spaniards, in the
distance, a striking and enchanting spectacle. It was a revelation of
an ancient society lying two ethnical periods back of European society,
and eminently calculated, from its orderly plan of life, to awaken
curiosity and inspire enthusiasm. A certain amount of extravagance of
opinion was unavoidable.

A few particulars have been named tending to show the extent of Aztec
advancement to which some others may now be added. Ornamental gardens
were found, magazines of weapons and of military costumes, improved
apparel, manufactured fabrics of cotton of superior workmanship,
improved implements and utensils, and an increased variety of food;
picture-writing, used chiefly to indicate the tribute in kind each
subjugated village was to pay; a calendar for measuring time, and open
markets for the barter of commodities.

Administrative offices had been created to meet the demands of a
growing municipal life; a priesthood, with a temple worship and a
ritual including human sacrifices, had been established. The office of
head war-chief had also risen into increased importance. These, and
other circumstances of their condition, not necessary to be detailed,
imply a corresponding development of their institutions. Such are
some of the differences between the Lower and the Middle Status of
barbarism, as illustrated by the relative conditions of the Iroquois
and the Aztecs, both having doubtless the same original institutions.

With these preliminary suggestions made, the three most important and
most difficult questions with respect to the Aztec social system,
remain to be considered. They relate first, to the existence of Gentes
and Phratries; second, the existence and functions of the Council
of Chiefs; and, third, the existence and functions of the office of
General Military Commander, held by Montezuma.

I. _The Existence of Gentes and Phratries._

It may seem singular that the early Spanish writers did not discover
the Aztec gentes, if in fact they existed; but the case was nearly the
same with the Iroquois under the observation of our own people more
than two hundred years. The existence among them of clans, named after
animals, was pointed out at an early day, but without suspecting that
it was the unit of a social system upon which both the tribe and the
confederacy rested.[207] The failure of the Spanish investigators to
notice the existence of the gentile organization among the tribes of
Spanish America would afford no proof of its non-existence; but if it
did exist, it would simply prove that their work was superficial in
this respect.

There is a large amount of indirect and fragmentary evidence in the
Spanish writers pointing both to the gens and the phratry, some of
which will now be considered. Reference has been made to the frequent
use of the term “kindred” by Herrera, showing that groups of persons
were noticed who were bound together by affinities of blood. This, from
the size of the group, seems to require a gens. The term “lineage” is
sometimes used to indicate a still larger group, and implying a phratry.

The pueblo of Mexico was divided geographically into four quarters,
each of which was occupied by a lineage, a body of people more
nearly related by consanguinity among themselves than they were to
the inhabitants of the other quarters. Presumptively, each lineage
was a phratry. Each quarter was again subdivided, and each local
subdivision was occupied by a community of persons bound together by
some common tie.[208] Presumptively, this community of persons was
a gens. Turning to the kindred tribe of Tlascalans, the same facts
nearly re-appear. Their pueblo was divided into four quarters, each
occupied by a lineage. Each had its own Teuctli or head war-chief, its
distinctive military costume, and its own standard and blazon.[209]
As one people they were under the government of a council of chiefs,
which the Spaniards honored with the name of the Tlascalan senate.[210]
Cholula, in like manner, was divided into six quarters, called wards by
Herrera, which leads to the same inference.[211] The Aztecs in their
social subdivisions having arranged among themselves the parts of the
pueblo they were severally to occupy, these geographical districts
would result from their mode of settlement. If the brief account of
these _quarters_ at the foundation of Mexico, given by Herrera, who
follows Acosta, is read in the light of this explanation, the truth of
the matter will be brought quite near. After mentioning the building
of a “chapel of lime and stone for the idol,” Herrera proceeds as
follows: “When this was done, the idol ordered a priest to bid the
chief men divide themselves, with their kindred and followers, into
four wards or quarters, leaving the house that had been built for him
to rest in the middle, and each party to build as they liked best.
These are the four quarters of Mexico now called St. John, St. Mary
the Round, St. Paul and St. Sebastian. That division being accordingly
made, their idol again directed them to distribute among themselves
the gods he should name, and each ward to appoint peculiar places
where the gods should be worshiped; and thus every quarter has several
smaller wards in it according to the number of their gods this idol
called them to adore.... Thus Mexico, Tenochtitlan, was founded....
When the aforesaid partition was made, those who thought themselves
injured, with their kindred and followers, went away to seek some
other place,”[212] namely, Tlatelulco, which was adjacent. It is a
reasonable interpretation of this language that they divided by kin,
first into four general divisions, and these into smaller subdivisions,
which is the usual formula for stating results. But the actual process
was the exact reverse; namely, each body of kindred located in an
area by themselves, and the several bodies in such a way as to bring
those most nearly related in geographical connection with each other.
Assuming that the lowest subdivision was a gens, and that each quarter
was occupied by a phratry, composed of related gentes, the primary
distribution of the Aztecs in their pueblo is perfectly intelligible.
Without this assumption it is incapable of a satisfactory explanation.
When a people, organized in gentes, phratries and tribes, settled in
a town or city, they located by gentes and by tribes, as a necessary
consequence of their social organization. The Grecian and Roman tribes
settled in their cities in this manner. For example, the three Roman
tribes were organized in gentes and curiæ, the curia being the analogue
of the phratry; and they settled at Rome by gentes, by curias and by
tribes. The Ramnes occupied the Palatine Hill. The Tities were mostly
on the Quirinal, and the Luceres mostly on the Esquiline. If the Aztecs
were in gentes and phratries, having but one tribe, they would of
necessity be found in as many quarters as they had phratries, with each
gens of the same phratry in the main locally by itself. As husband and
wife were of different gentes, and the children were of the gens of the
father or mother as descent was in the male or the female line, the
preponderating number in each locality would be of the same gens.

Their military organization was based upon these social divisions.
As Nestor advised Agamemnon to arrange the troops by phratries and by
tribes, the Aztecs seem to have arranged themselves by gentes and by
phratries. In the _Mexican Chronicles_, by the native author Tezozomoc
(for a reference to the following passage, in which I am indebted to my
friend Mr. Ad. F. Bandelier, of Highland, Illinois, who is now engaged
upon its translation), a proposed invasion of Michoacan is referred to.
Axaycatl “spoke to the Mexican captains Tlacatecatl and Tlacochcalcatl,
and to all the others, and inquired whether all the Mexicans were
prepared, after the usages and customs of each ward, each one with its
captains; and if so that they should begin to march, and that all were
to reunite at Matlatzinco Toluca.”[213] It indicates that the military
organization was by gentes and by phratries.

An inference of the existence of Aztec gentes arises also from their
land tenure. Clavigero remarks that “the lands which were called
_Altepetlalli_ [altepetl = pueblo] that is, those of the communities
of cities and villages, were divided into as many parts as there were
districts in a city, and every district possessed its own part entirely
distinct from, and independent of every other. These lands could not
be alienated by any means whatever.”[214] In each of these communities
we are led to recognize a gens, whose localization was a necessary
consequence of their social system. Clavigero puts the districts for
the community, whereas it was the latter which made the district, and
which owned the lands in common. The element of kin which united each
community, omitted by Clavigero, is supplied by Herrera. “There were
other lords, called major parents [sachems], whose landed property all
belonged to one lineage [gens], which lived in one district, and there
were many of them when the lands were distributed at the time New Spain
was peopled; and each lineage received its own, and have possessed them
until now; and these lands did not belong to any one in particular,
but to all in common, and he who possessed them could not sell them,
although he enjoyed them for life and left them to his sons and heirs;
and if a house died out they were left to the nearest parent to whom
they were given and to no other, who administered the same district or
lineage.”[215] In this remarkable statement our author was puzzled to
harmonize the facts with the prevailing theory of Aztec institutions.
He presents to us an Aztec lord who held the fee of the land as a
feudal proprietor, and a title of rank pertaining to it, both of which
he transmitted to his son and heir. But in obedience to truth he states
the essential fact that the lands belonged to a body of consanguinei
of whom he is styled the major parent, _i. e._, he was the sachem, it
may be supposed, of the gens, the latter owning these lands in common.
The suggestion that he held the lands in trust means nothing. They
found Indian chiefs connected with gentes, each gens owning a body of
lands in common, and when the chief died, his place was filled by his
son, according to Herrera. In so far it may have been analogous to a
Spanish estate and title; and the misconception resulted from a want
of knowledge of the nature and tenure of the office of chief. In some
cases they found the son did not succeed his father, but the office
went to some other person; hence the further statement, “if a house
(_alguna casa_, another feudal feature) died out, they [the lands] were
left to the nearest major parent;” _i. e._, another person was elected
sachem, as near as any conclusion can be drawn from the language. What
little has been given to us by the Spanish writers concerning Indian
chiefs, and the land tenure of the tribes is corrupted by the use of
language adapted to feudal institutions that had no existence among
them. In this _lineage_ we are warranted in recognizing an Aztec gens;
and in this _lord_ an Aztec sachem, whose office was hereditary in the
gens, in the sense elsewhere stated, and elective among its members.
If descent was in the male line, the choice would fall upon one of
the sons of the deceased sachem, own or collateral, upon a grandson,
through one of his sons, or upon a brother, own or collateral. But
if in the female line it would fall upon a brother or nephew, own or
collateral, as elsewhere explained.

The sachem had no title whatever to the lands, and therefore none to
transmit to any one. He was thought to be the proprietor because he
held an office which was perpetually maintained, and because there was
a body of lands perpetually belonging to a gens over which he was a
sachem. The misconception of this office and of its tenure has been the
fruitful source of unnumbered errors in our aboriginal histories. The
_lineage_ of Herrera, and the _communities_ of Clavigero were evidently
organizations, and the same organization. They found in this body of
kindred, without knowing the fact, the unit of their social system—a
gens, as we must suppose.

Indian chiefs are described as lords by Spanish writers, and invested
with rights over lands and over persons they never possessed. It
is a misconception to style an Indian chief a lord in the European
sense, because it implies a condition of society that did not exist.
A lord holds a rank and a title by hereditary right, secured to him
by special legislation in derogation of the rights of the people as a
whole. To this rank and title, since the overthrow of feudalism, no
duties are attached which may be claimed by the king or the kingdom as
a matter of right. On the contrary, an Indian chief holds an office,
not by hereditary right, but by election from a constituency, which
retained the right to depose him for cause. The office carried with
it the obligation to perform certain duties for the benefit of the
constituency. He had no authority over the persons or property or lands
of the members of the gens. It is thus seen that no analogy exists
between a lord and his title, and an Indian chief and his office. One
belongs to political society, and represents an aggression of the
few upon the many; while the other belongs to gentile society and is
founded upon the common interests of the members of the gens. Unequal
privileges find no place in the gens, phratry or tribe.

Further traces of the existence of Aztec gentes will appear. A _prima
facie_ case of the existence of gentes among them is at least made
out. There was also an antecedent probability to this effect, from the
presence of the two upper members of the organic series, the tribe, and
the confederacy, and from the general prevalence of the organization
among other tribes. A very little close investigation by the early
Spanish writers would have placed the question beyond a doubt, and, as
a consequence, have given a very different complexion to Aztec history.

The usages regulating the inheritance of property among the Aztecs have
come down to us in a confused and contradictory condition. They are
not material in this discussion, except as they reveal the existence
of bodies of consanguinei, and the inheritance by children from their
fathers. If the latter were the fact it would show that descent was
in the male line, and also an extraordinary advance in a knowledge
of property. It is not probable that children enjoyed an exclusive
inheritance, or that any Aztec owned a foot of land which he could call
his own, with power to sell and convey to whomsoever he pleased.

II. _The Existence and Functions of the Council of Chiefs._

The existence of such a council among the Aztecs might have been
predicted from the necessary constitution of Indian society.
Theoretically, it would have been composed of that class of chiefs,
distinguished as sachems, who represented bodies of kindred through an
office perpetually maintained. Here again, as elsewhere, a necessity is
seen for gentes, whose principal chiefs would represent the people in
their ultimate social subdivisions as among the Northern tribes. Aztec
gentes are fairly necessary to explain the existence of Aztec chiefs.
Of the presence of an Aztec council there is no doubt whatever; but of
the number of its members and of its functions we are left in almost
total ignorance. Brasseur de Bourbourg remarks generally that “nearly
all the towns or tribes are divided into four clans or quarters whose
chiefs constitute the great council.”[216] Whether he intended to limit
the number to one chief from each quarter is not clear; but elsewhere
he limits the Aztec council to four chiefs. Diego Duran, who wrote his
work in 1579-1581, and thus preceded both Acosta and Tezozomoc, remarks
as follows: “First we must know, that in Mexico after having elected a
king they elected four lords of the brothers or near relations of this
king to whom they gave the titles of princes, and from whom they had to
choose the king. [To the offices he gives the names of Tlacachcalcatl,
Tlacatecal, Ezuauacatl, and Fillancalque].... These four lords and
titles after being elected princes, they made them the royal council,
like the presidents and judges of the supreme council, without whose
opinion nothing could be done.”[217] Acosta, after naming the same
offices, and calling the persons who held them “electors,” remarks that
“all these four dignities were of the great council, without whose
advice the king might not do anything of importance.”[218] And Herrera,
after placing these offices in four grades, proceeds: “These four
sorts of noblemen were of the supreme council, without whose advice
the king was to do nothing of moment, and no king could be chosen but
what was of one of these four orders.”[219] The use of the term king
to describe a principal war-chief and of princes to describe Indian
chiefs cannot create a state or a political society where none existed;
but as misnomers they stilt up and disfigure our aboriginal history
and for that reason ought to be discarded. When the Huexotzincos sent
delegates to Mexico proposing an alliance against the Tlascalans,
Montezuma addressed them, according to Tezozomoc, as follows: “Brothers
and sons, you are welcome, rest yourselves awhile, for although I am
king indeed I alone cannot satisfy you, but only together with all the
chiefs of the sacred Mexican senate.”[220] The above accounts recognize
the existence of a supreme council, with authority over the action of
the principal war-chief, which is the material point. It tends to show
that the Aztecs guarded themselves against an irresponsible despot,
by subjecting his action to a council of chiefs, and by making him
elective and deposable. If the limited and incomplete statements of
these authors intended to restrict this council to four members, which
Duran seems to imply, the limitation is improbable. As such the council
would represent, not the Aztec tribe, but the small body of kinsmen
from whom the military commander was to be chosen. This is not the
theory of a council of chiefs. Each chief represents a constituency,
and the chiefs together represent the tribe. A selection from their
number is sometimes made to form a general council; but it is through
an organic provision which fixes the number, and provides for their
perpetual maintenance. The Tezcucan council is said to have consisted
of fourteen members,[221] while the council at Tlascala was a numerous
body. Such a council among the Aztecs is required by the structure and
principles of Indian society, and therefore would be expected to exist.
In this council may be recognized the lost element in Aztec history.
A knowledge of its functions is essential to a comprehension of Aztec
society.

In the current histories this council is treated as an advisory board
of Montezuma’s, as a council of ministers of his own creation; thus
Clavigero: “In the history of the conquest we shall find Montezuma
in frequent deliberation with his council on the pretensions of
the Spaniards. We do not know the number of each council, nor do
historians furnish us with the lights necessary to illustrate
such a subject.”[222] It was one of the first questions requiring
investigation, and the fact that the early writers failed to ascertain
its composition and functions is proof conclusive of the superficial
character of their work. We know, however, that the council of chiefs
is an institution which came in with the gentes, which represents
electing constituencies, and which from time immemorial had a vocation
as well as original governing powers. We find a Tezcucan and Tlacopan
council, a Tlascalan, a Cholulan and a Michoacan council, each composed
of chiefs. The evidence establishes the existence of an Aztec council
of chiefs; but so far as it is limited to four members, all of the
same lineage, it is presented in an improbable form. Every tribe in
Mexico and Central America, beyond a reasonable doubt, had its council
of chiefs. It was the governing body of the tribe, and a constant
phenomenon in all parts of aboriginal America. The council of chiefs
is the oldest institution of government of mankind. It can show an
unbroken succession on the several continents from the Upper Status of
savagery through the three sub-periods of barbarism to the commencement
of civilization, when, having been changed into a preconsidering
council with the rise of the assembly of the people, it gave birth to
the modern legislature in two bodies.

It does not appear that there was a general council of the Aztec
confederacy, composed of the principal chiefs of the three tribes,
as distinguished from the separate councils of each. A complete
elucidation of this subject is required before it can be known whether
the Aztec organization was simply a league, offensive and defensive,
and as such under the primary control of the Aztec tribe, or a
confederacy in which the parts were integrated in a symmetrical whole.
This problem must await future solution.

III. _The Tenure and Functions of the Office of Principal War-chief._

The name of the office held by Montezuma, according to the best
accessible information, was simply _Teuctli_, which signifies a
_war-chief_. As a member of the council of chiefs he was sometimes
called _Tlatoani_, which signifies _speaker_. This office of a general
military commander was the highest known to the Aztecs. It was the same
office and held by the same tenure as that of principal war-chief in
the Iroquois confederacy. It made the person, _ex officio_, a member
of the council of chiefs, as may be inferred from the fact that in
some of the tribes the principal war-chief had precedence in the
council both in debate and in pronouncing his opinion.[223] None of
the Spanish writers apply this title to Montezuma or his successors.
It was superseded by the inappropriate title of king. _Ixtlilxochitl_,
who was of mixed Tezcucan and Spanish descent, describes the head
war-chiefs of Mexico, Tezcuco and Tlacopan, by the simple title of
war-chief, with another to indicate the tribe. After speaking of the
division of powers between the three chiefs when the confederacy was
formed, and of the assembling of the chiefs of the three tribes on that
occasion, he proceeds: “The king of Tezcuco was saluted by the title
of _Aculhua Teuctli_, also by that of _Chichimecatl Teuctli_ which his
ancestors had worn, and which was the mark of the empire; _Itzcoatzin_,
his uncle, received the title of _Culhua Teuctli_, because he reigned
over the Toltecs-Culhuas; and _Totoquihuatzin_ that of _Tecpanuatl
Teuctli_, which had been the title of _Azcaputzalco_. Since that
time their successors have received the same title.”[224] _Izcoatzin
(Itzcoatl)_, here mentioned, was war-chief of the Aztecs when the
confederacy was formed. As the title was that of war-chief, then held
by many other persons, the compliment consisted in connecting with it a
tribal designation. In Indian speech the office held by Montezuma was
equivalent to head war-chief, and in English to general.

Clavigero recognizes this office in several Nahuatlac tribes, but
never applies it to the Aztec war-chief. “The highest rank of nobility
in Tlascala, in Huexotzinco and in Cholula was that of _Teuctli_. To
obtain this rank it was necessary to be of noble birth, to have given
proofs in several battles of the utmost courage, to have arrived at
a certain age, and to command great riches for the enormous expenses
which were necessary to be supported by the possessor of such a
dignity.”[225] After Montezuma had been magnified into an absolute
potentate, with civil as well as military functions, the nature and
powers of the office he held were left in the background—in fact
uninvestigated. As their general military commander he possessed the
means of winning the popular favor, and of commanding the popular
respect. It was a dangerous but necessary office to the tribe and to
the confederacy. Throughout human experience, from the Lower Status of
barbarism to the present time, it has ever been a dangerous office.
Constitutions and laws furnish the present security of civilized
nations, so far as they have any. A body of usages and customs grew
up, in all probability, among the advanced Indian tribes and among the
tribes of the valley of Mexico, regulating the powers and prescribing
the duties of this office. There are general reasons warranting the
supposition that the Aztec council of chiefs was supreme, not only in
civil affairs, but over military affairs, the person and direction
of the war-chief included. The Aztec polity under increased numbers
and material advancement, had undoubtedly grown complex, and for that
reason a knowledge of it would have been the more instructive. Could
the exact particulars of their governmental organization be ascertained
they would be sufficiently remarkable without embellishment.

The Spanish writers concur generally in the statement that the
office held by Montezuma was elective, with the choice confined to
a particular family. The office was found to pass from brother to
brother, or from uncle to nephew. They were unable, however, to explain
why it did not in some cases pass from father to son. Since the mode of
succession was unusual to the Spaniards there was less possibility of
a mistake with regard to the principal fact. Moreover, two successions
occurred under the immediate notice of the conquerors. Montezuma was
succeeded by Cuitlahua. In this case the office passed from brother to
brother, although we cannot know whether they were own or collateral
brothers without a knowledge of their system of consanguinity. Upon the
death of the latter Guatemozin was elected to succeed him. Here the
office passed from uncle to nephew, but we do not know whether he was
an own or a collateral nephew. (See Part Third, ch. iii.) In previous
cases the office had passed from brother to brother and also from
uncle to nephew.[226] An elective office implies a constituency; but
who were the constituents in this case? To meet this question the four
chiefs mentioned by Duran (_supra_) are introduced as electors, to whom
one elector from Tezcuco and one from Tlacopan are added, making six,
who are then invested with power to choose from a particular family
the principal war-chief. This is not the theory of an elective Indian
office, and it may be dismissed as improbable. Sahagun indicates a much
larger constituency. “When the king or lord died,” he remarks, “all the
senators called _Tecutlatoques_, and the old men of the tribe
called _Achcacauhiti_, and also the captains and old warriors called
_Yautequioaques_, and other prominent captains in warlike matters,
and also the priests called _Tlenamacaques_, or _Papasaques_—all
these assembled in the royal houses. Then they deliberated upon and
determined who had to be lord, and chose one of the most noble of the
lineage of the past lords, who should be a valiant man, experienced in
warlike matters, daring and brave.... When they agreed upon one they
at once named him as lord, but this election was not made by ballot
or votes, but all together conferring at last agreed upon the man.
The lord once elected they also elected four others which were like
senators, and had to be always with the lord, and be informed of all
the business of the kingdom.”[227] This scheme of election by a large
assembly, while it shows the popular element in the government which
undoubtedly existed, is without the method of Indian institutions.
Before the tenure of this office and the mode of election can be
made intelligible, it is necessary to find whether or not they were
organized in gentes, whether descent was in the female line or the
male, and to know something of their system of consanguinity. If they
had the system found in many other tribes of the Ganowánian family,
which is probable, a man would call his brother’s son his son, and his
sister’s son his nephew; he would call his father’s brother his father,
and his mother’s brother his uncle; the children of his father’s
brother his brothers and sisters, and the children of his mother’s
brother his cousins, and so on. If organized into gentes with descent
in the female line, a man would have brothers, uncles and nephews,
collateral grandfathers and grandsons within his own gens; but neither
own father, own son, or lineal grandson. His own sons and his brother’s
sons would belong to other gentes. It cannot as yet be affirmed that
the Aztecs were organized in gentes; but the succession to the office
of principal war-chief is of itself strong proof of the fact, because
it would explain this succession completely. Then with descent in the
female line the office would be hereditary in a particular gens, but
elective among its members. In that case the office would pass, by
election within the gens, from brother to brother, or from uncle to
nephew, precisely as it did among the Aztecs, and never from father to
son. Among the Iroquois at that same time the offices of sachem and of
principal war-chief were passing from brother to brother or from uncle
to nephew, as the choice might happen to fall, and never to the son. It
was the gens, with descent in the female line, which gave this mode of
succession, and which could have been secured in no other conceivable
way. It is difficult to resist the conclusion, from these facts alone,
that the Aztecs were organized in gentes, and that in respect to this
office at least descent was still in the female line.

It may therefore be suggested, as a probable explanation, that the
office held by Montezuma was hereditary in a gens (the eagle was the
blazon or totem on the house occupied by Montezuma), by the members
of which the choice was made from among their number; that their
nomination was then submitted separately to the four lineages or
divisions of the Aztecs (conjectured to be phratries), for acceptance
or rejection; and also to the Tezcucans and Tlacopans, who were
directly interested in the selection of the general commander. When
they had severally considered and confirmed the nomination each
division appointed a person to signify their concurrence; whence the
six miscalled electors. It is not unlikely that the four high chiefs
of the Aztecs, mentioned as electors by a number of authors, were in
fact the war-chiefs of the four divisions of the Aztecs, like the
four war-chiefs of the four lineages of the Tlascalans. The function
of these persons was not to elect, but to ascertain by a conference
with each other whether the choice made by the gens had been concurred
in, and if so to announce the result. The foregoing is submitted as a
conjectural explanation, upon the fragments of evidence remaining, of
the mode of succession to the Aztec office of principal war-chief. It
is seen to harmonize with Indian usages, and with the theory of the
office of an elective Indian chief.

The right to depose from office follows as a necessary consequence of
the right to elect, where the term was for life. It is thus turned
into an office during good behavior. In these two principles of
electing and deposing, universally established in the social system
of the American aborigines, sufficient evidence is furnished that the
sovereign power remained practically in the hands of the people. This
power to depose, though seldom exercised, was vital in the gentile
organization. Montezuma was no exception to the rule. It required time
to reach this result from the peculiar circumstances of the case, for
a good reason was necessary. When Montezuma allowed himself, through
intimidation, to be conducted from his place of residence to the
quarters of Cortes where he was placed under confinement, the Aztecs
were paralyzed for a time for the want of a military commander. The
Spaniards had possession both of the man and of his office.[228] They
waited some weeks, hoping the Spaniards would retire; but when they
found the latter intended to remain they met the necessity, as there
are sufficient reasons for believing, by deposing Montezuma for want
of resolution, and elected his brother to fill his place. Immediately
thereafter they assaulted the Spanish quarters with great fury, and
finally succeeded in driving them from their pueblo. This conclusion
respecting the deposition of Montezuma is fully warranted by Herrera’s
statement of the facts. After the assault commenced, Cortes, observing
the Aztecs obeying a new commander, at once suspected the truth of the
matter, and “sent Marina to ask Montezuma whether he thought they had
put the government into his hands,”[229] _i. e._, the hands of the
new commander. Montezuma is said to have replied “that they would not
presume to choose a king in Mexico whilst he was living.”[230] He then
went upon the roof of the house and addressed his countrymen, saying
among other things, “that he had been informed they had chosen another
king because he was confined and loved the Spaniards;” to which he
received the following ungracious reply from an Aztec warrior: “Hold
your peace, you effeminate scoundrel, born to weave and spin; these
dogs keep you a prisoner, you are a coward.”[231] Then they discharged
arrows upon him and stoned him, from the effects of which and from deep
humiliation he shortly afterwards died. The war-chief in the command of
the Aztecs in this assault was Cuitlahua, the brother of Montezuma and
his successor.[232]

Respecting the functions of this office very little satisfactory
information can be derived from the Spanish writers. There is no
reason for supposing that Montezuma possessed any power over the civil
affairs of the Aztecs. Moreover, every presumption is against it. In
military affairs when in the field he had the powers of a general; but
military movements were probably decided upon by the council. It is
an interesting fact to be noticed that the functions of a priest were
attached to the office of principal war-chief, and, as it is claimed,
those of a judge.[233] The early appearance of these functions in
the natural growth of the military office will be referred to again
in connection with that of basileus. Although the government was of
two powers it is probable that the council was supreme, in case of
a conflict of authority, over civil and military affairs. It should
be remembered that the council of chiefs was the oldest in time, and
possessed a solid basis of power in the needs of society and in the
representative character of the office of chief.

The tenure of the office of principal war-chief and the presence of
a council with power to depose from office, tend to show that the
institutions of the Aztecs were essentially democratical. The elective
principle with respect to war-chief, and which we must suppose existed
with respect to sachem and chief, and the presence of a council of
chiefs, determine the material fact. A pure democracy of the Athenian
type was unknown in the Lower, in the Middle, or even in the Upper
Status of barbarism; but it is very important to know whether the
institutions of a people are essentially democratical, or essentially
monarchical, when we seek to understand them. Institutions of the
former kind are separated nearly as widely from those of the latter,
as democracy is from monarchy. Without ascertaining the unit of their
social system, if organized in gentes as they probably were, and
without gaining a knowledge of the system that did exist, the Spanish
writers boldly invented for the Aztecs an absolute monarchy with high
feudal characteristics, and have succeeded in placing it in history.
This misconception has stood, through American indolence, quite as
long as it deserves to stand. The Aztec organization presented itself
plainly to the Spaniards as a league or confederacy of tribes. Nothing
but the grossest perversion of obvious facts could have enabled the
Spanish writers to fabricate the Aztec monarchy out of a democratic
organization.

Theoretically, the Aztecs, Tezcucans and Tlacopans should severally
have had a head-sachem to represent the tribe in civil affairs when
the council of chiefs was not in session, and to take the initiative
in preparing its work. There are traces of such an officer among the
Aztecs in the _Ziahuacatl_, who is sometimes called the second chief,
as the war-chief is called the first. But the accessible information
respecting this office is too limited to warrant a discussion of the
subject.

It has been shown among the Iroquois that the warriors could appear
before the council of chiefs and express their views upon public
questions; and that the women could do the same through orators of
their own selection. This popular participation in the government led
in time to the popular assembly, with power to adopt or reject public
measures submitted to them by the council. Among the Village Indians
there is no evidence, so far as the author is aware, that there was an
assembly of the people to consider public questions with power to act
upon them. The four lineages probably met for special objects, but this
was very different from a general assembly for public objects. From the
democratic character of their institutions and their advanced condition
the Aztecs were drawing near the time when the assembly of the people
might be expected to appear.

The growth of the idea of government among the American aborigines,
as elsewhere remarked, commenced with the gens and ended with the
confederacy. Their organizations were social and not political.
Until the idea of property had advanced very far beyond the point
they had attained, the substitution of political for gentile society
was impossible. There is not a fact to show that any portion of the
aborigines, at least in North America, had reached any conception
of the second great plan of government founded upon territory and
upon property. The spirit of the government and the condition of the
people harmonize with the institutions under which they live. When the
military spirit predominates, as it did among the Aztecs, a military
democracy rises naturally under gentile institutions. Such a government
neither supplants the free spirit of the gentes, nor weakens the
principles of democracy, but accords with them harmoniously.



CHAPTER VIII.

THE GRECIAN GENS.

    EARLY CONDITION OF GRECIAN TRIBES.—ORGANIZED INTO
    GENTES.—CHANGES IN THE CHARACTER OF THE GENS.—NECESSITY FOR
    A POLITICAL SYSTEM.—PROBLEM TO BE SOLVED.—THE FORMATION
    OF A STATE.—GROTE’S DESCRIPTION OF THE GRECIAN GENTES.—OF
    THEIR PHRATRIES AND TRIBES.—ATTRIBUTES OF THE GENS.—SIMILAR
    TO THOSE OF THE IROQUOIS GENTES.—THE OFFICE OF CHIEF OF
    THE GENS.—WHETHER ELECTIVE OR HEREDITARY.—THE GENS THE
    BASIS OF THE SOCIAL SYSTEM.—ANTIQUITY OF THE GENTILE
    LINEAGE.—INHERITANCE OF PROPERTY.—ARCHAIC AND FINAL
    RULE.—RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN THE MEMBERS OF A GENS.—THE GENS
    THE CENTRE OF SOCIAL AND RELIGIOUS INFLUENCE.


Civilization may be said to have commenced among the Asiatic Greeks
with the composition of the Homeric poems about 850 B. C.; and among
the European Greeks about a century later with the composition of the
Hesiodic poems. Anterior to these epochs, there was a period of several
thousand years during which the Hellenic tribes were advancing through
the Later Period of barbarism, and preparing for their entrance upon
a civilized career. Their most ancient traditions find them already
established in the Grecian peninsula, upon the eastern border of the
Mediterranean, and upon the intermediate and adjacent islands. An
older branch of the same stock, of which the Pelasgians were the chief
representatives, had preceded them in the occupation of the greater
part of these areas, and were in time either Hellenized by them,
or forced into emigration. The anterior condition of the Hellenic
tribes and of their predecessors, must be deduced from the arts and
inventions which they brought down from the previous period, from the
state of development of their language, from their traditions and from
their social institutions, which severally survived into the period of
civilization. Our discussion will be restricted, in the main, to the
last class of facts.

Pelasgians and Hellenes alike were organized in gentes, phratries[234]
and tribes; and the latter united by coalescence into nations. In some
cases the organic series was not complete. Whether in tribes or nations
their government rested upon the gens as the unit of organization,
and resulted in a gentile society or a people, as distinguished from
a political society or a state. The instrument of government was a
council of chiefs, with the co-operation of an agora or assembly
of the people, and of a basileus or military commander. The people
were free, and their institutions democratical. Under the influence
of advancing ideas and wants the gens had passed out of its archaic
into its ultimate form. Modifications had been forced upon it by the
irresistible demands of an improving society; but, notwithstanding
the concessions made, the failure of the gentes to meet these wants
was constantly becoming more apparent. The changes were limited, in
the main, to three particulars: firstly, descent was changed to the
male line; secondly, intermarriage in the gens was permitted in the
case of female orphans and heiresses; and thirdly, children had gained
an exclusive inheritance of their father’s property. An attempt will
elsewhere be made to trace these changes, briefly, and the causes by
which they were produced.

The Hellenes in general were in fragmentary tribes, presenting the same
characteristics in their form of government as the barbarous tribes in
general, when organized in gentes and in the same stage of advancement.
Their condition was precisely such as might have been predicted would
exist under gentile institutions, and therefore presents nothing
remarkable.

When Grecian society came for the first time under historical
observation, about the first Olympiad (776 B. C.) and down to the
legislation of Cleisthenes (509 B. C.), it was engaged upon the
solution of a great problem. It was no less than a fundamental
change in the plan of government, involving a great modification of
institutions. The people were seeking to transfer themselves out of
gentile society, in which they had lived from time immemorial, into
political society based upon territory and upon property, which had
become essential to a career of civilization. In fine, they were
striving to establish a state, the first in the experience of the
Aryan family, and to place it upon a territorial foundation, such as
the state has occupied from that time to the present. Ancient society
rested upon an organization of persons, and was governed through the
relations of persons to a gens and tribe; but the Grecian tribes
were outgrowing this old plan of government, and began to feel the
necessity of a political system. To accomplish this result it was only
necessary to invent a deme or township, circumscribed with boundaries,
to christen it with a name, and organize the people therein as a body
politic. The township, with the fixed property it contained, and with
the people who inhabited it for the time being, was to become the unit
of organization in the new plan of government. Thereafter the gentilis,
changed into a citizen, would be dealt with by the state through
his territorial relations, and not through his personal relations
to a gens. He would be enrolled in the deme of his residence, which
enrollment was the evidence of his citizenship; would vote and be taxed
in his deme; and from it be called into the military service. Although
apparently a simple idea, it required centuries of time and a complete
revolution of pre-existing conceptions of government to accomplish the
result. The gens, which had so long been the unit of a social system,
had proved inadequate, as before suggested, to meet the requirements
of an advancing society. But to set this organization aside, together
with the phratry and tribe, and substitute a number of fixed areas,
each with its community of citizens, was, in the nature of the case,
a measure of extreme difficulty. The relations of the individual to
his gens, which were personal, had to be transferred to the township
and become territorial; the demarch of the township taking, in some
sense, the place of the chief of the gens. A township with its fixed
property would be permanent, and the people therein sufficiently so;
while the gens was a fluctuating aggregate of persons, more or less
scattered, and now growing incapable of permanent establishment in a
local circumscription. Anterior to experience, a township, as the unit
of a political system, was abstruse enough to tax the Greeks and Romans
to the depths of their capacities before the conception was formed
and set in practical operation. Property was the new element that had
been gradually remoulding Grecian institutions to prepare the way for
political society, of which it was to be the mainspring as well as
the foundation. It was no easy task to accomplish such a fundamental
change, however simple and obvious it may now seem; because all the
previous experience of the Grecian tribes had been identified with the
gentes whose powers were to be surrendered to the new political bodies.

Several centuries elapsed, after the first attempts were made to
found the new political system, before the problem was solved. After
experience had demonstrated that the gentes were incapable of forming
the basis of a state, several distinct schemes of legislation were
tried in the various Grecian communities, who copied more or less
each other’s experiments, all tending to the same result. Among the
Athenians, from whose experience the chief illustrations will be
drawn, may be mentioned the legislation of Theseus, on the authority
of tradition; that of Draco (624 B. C.); that of Solon (594 B. C.);
and that of Cleisthenes (509 B. C.), the last three of which were
within the historical period. The development of municipal life and
institutions, the aggregation of wealth in walled cities, and the great
changes in the mode of life thereby produced, prepared the way for the
overthrow of gentile society, and for the establishment of political
society in its place.

Before attempting to trace the transition from gentile into political
society, with which the closing history of the gentes is identified,
the Grecian gens and its attributes will be first considered.

Athenian institutions are typical of Grecian institutions in general,
in whatever relates to the constitution of the gens and tribe, down
to the end of ancient society among them. At the commencement of the
historical period, the Ionians of Attica were subdivided, as is well
known, into four tribes (Geleontes, Hopletes, Aegicores, and Argades),
speaking the same dialect, and occupying a common territory. They had
coalesced into a nation as distinguished from a confederacy of tribes;
but such a confederacy had probably existed in anterior times.[235]
Each Attic tribe was composed of three phratries, and each phratry of
thirty gentes, making an aggregate of twelve phratries, and of three
hundred and sixty gentes in the four tribes. Such is the general form
of the statement, the fact being constant with respect to the number of
tribes, and the number of phratries in each, but liable to variation
in the number of gentes in each phratry. In like manner the Dorians
were generally found in three tribes (Hylleis, Pamphyli, and Dymanes),
although forming a number of nationalities; as at Sparta, Argos,
Sicyon, Corinth, Epidaurus and Troezen; and beyond the Peloponnesus at
Megara, and elsewhere. One or more non-Dorian tribes were found in some
cases united with them, as at Corinth, Sicyon and Argos.

In all cases the Grecian tribe presupposes the gentes, the bond of kin
and of dialect forming the basis upon which they united in a tribe; but
the tribe did not presuppose the phratry, which, as an intermediate
organization, although very common among all these tribes, was liable
to be intermitted. At Sparta, there were subdivisions of the tribes
called obês (ὠβαί), each tribe containing ten, which were analogous to
phratries; but concerning the functions of these organizations some
uncertainty prevails.[236]

The Athenian gentes will now be considered as they appeared in their
ultimate form and in full vitality; but with the elements of an
incipient civilization arrayed against them, before which they were
yielding step by step, and by which they were to be overthrown with the
social system they created. In some respects it is the most interesting
portion of the history of this remarkable organization, which had
brought human society out of savagery, and carried it through barbarism
into the early stages of civilization.

The social system of the Athenians exhibits the following series:
first, the gens (γένος) founded upon kin; second, the phratry (φράτρα
and φρατρία), a brotherhood of gentes derived by segmentation,
probably, from an original gens; third, the tribe (φῦλον, later φυλὴ),
composed of several phratries, the members of which spoke the same
dialect; and fourth, a people or nation, composed of several tribes
united by coalescence into one gentile society, and occupying the same
territory. These integral and ascending organizations exhausted their
social system under the gentes, excepting the confederacy of tribes
occupying independent territories, which, although it occurred in some
instances in the early period and sprang naturally out of gentile
institutions, led to no important results. It is likely that the four
Athenian tribes confederated before they coalesced, the last occurring
after they had collected in one territory under pressure from other
tribes. If true of them, it would be equally true of the Dorian and
other tribes. When such tribes coalesced into a nation, there was no
term in the language to express the result, beyond a national name.
The Romans, under very similar institutions, styled themselves the
_Populus Romanus_, which expressed the fact exactly. They were then
simply a people, and nothing more; which was all that could result from
an aggregation of gentes, _curiæ_ and tribes. The four Athenian tribes
formed a society or people, which became completely autonomous in the
legendary period under the name of the Athenians. Throughout the early
Grecian communities, the gens phratry and tribe were constant phenomena
of their social systems, with the occasional absence of the phratry.

Mr. Grote has collected the principal facts with respect to the Grecian
gentes with such critical ability that they cannot be presented in
a more authoritative manner than in his own language, which will be
quoted where he treats the subject generally. After commenting upon
the tribal divisions of the Greeks, he proceeds as follows: “But the
Phratries and Gentes are a distribution completely different from
this. They seem aggregations of small primitive unities into larger;
they are independent of, and do not presuppose, the tribe; they arise
separately and spontaneously, without preconcerted uniformity, and
without reference to a common political purpose; the legislator finds
them pre-existing, and adapts or modifies them to answer some national
scheme. We must distinguish the general fact of the classification,
and the successive subordination in the scale, of the families to
the gens, of the gentes to the phratry, and of the phratries to the
tribe—from the precise numerical symmetry with which this subordination
is invested, as we read it,—thirty families to a gens, thirty gentes
to a phratry, three phratries to each tribe. If such nice equality
of numbers could ever have been procured, by legislative constraint,
operating upon pre-existent natural elements, the proportions could
not have been permanently maintained. But we may reasonably doubt
whether it did ever so exist.... That every phratry contained an
equal number of gentes, and every gens an equal number of families,
is a supposition hardly admissible without better evidence than we
possess. But apart from this questionable precision of numerical
scale, the Phratries and Gentes themselves were real, ancient, and
durable associations among the Athenian people, highly important to be
understood. The basis of the whole was the house, hearth, or family,—a
number of which, greater or less, composed the Gens or Genos. This
gens was therefore a clan, sept, or enlarged, and partly factitious,
brotherhood, bound together by,—1. Common religious ceremonies, and
exclusive privilege of priesthood, in honor of the same god, supposed
to be the primitive ancestor, and characterized by a special surname.
2. By a common burial place.[237] 3. By mutual rights of succession
to property. 4. By reciprocal obligations of help, defense, and
redress of injuries. 5. By mutual right and obligation to intermarry
in certain determinate cases, especially where there was an orphan
daughter or heiress. 6. By possession, in some cases, at least, of
common property, an archon and treasurer of their own. Such were
the rights and obligations characterizing the gentile union. The
phratric union, binding together several gentes, was less intimate,
but still included some mutual rights and obligations of an analogous
character; especially a communion of particular sacred rites, and
mutual privileges of prosecution in the event of a phrator being slain.
Each phratry was considered as belonging to one of the four tribes,
and all the phratries of the same tribe enjoyed a certain periodical
communion of sacred rites under the presidency of a magistrate called
the Phylo-Basileus or tribe-king selected from the Eupatrids.”[238]

The similarities between the Grecian and the Iroquois gens will at once
be recognized. Differences in characteristics will also be perceived,
growing out of the more advanced condition of Grecian society, and a
fuller development of their religious system. It will not be necessary
to verify the existence of the several attributes of the gens named by
Mr. Grote, as the proof is plain in the classical authorities. There
were other characteristics which doubtless pertained to the Grecian
gens, although it may be difficult to establish the existence of all
of them; such as: 7. The limitation of descent to the male line; 8.
The prohibition of intermarriage in the gens excepting in the case of
heiresses; 9. The right of adopting strangers into the gens; and 10.
The right of electing and deposing its chiefs.

The rights, privileges and obligations of the members of the Grecian
gens may be recapitulated, with the additions named, as follows:

       I. _Common religious rites._

      II. _A common burial place._

     III. _Mutual rights of succession to property of deceased
             members._

      IV. _Reciprocal obligations of help, defense and redress of
             injuries._

       V. _The right to intermarry in the gens in the cases of orphan
             daughters and heiresses._

      VI. _The possession of common property, an archon, and a
             treasurer._

     VII. _The limitation of descent to the male line._

    VIII. _The obligation not to marry in the gens except in
             specified cases._

      IX. _The right to adopt strangers into the gens._

       X. _The right to elect and depose its chiefs._

A brief reference to the added characteristics should be made.

7. _The limitation of descent to the male line._ There is no doubt that
such was the rule, because it is proved by their genealogies. I have
not been able to find in any Greek author a definition of a gens or
of a gentilis that would furnish a sufficient test of the right of a
given person to the gentile connection. Cicero, Varro and Festus have
defined the Roman gens and gentilis, which were strictly analogous
to the Grecian, with sufficient fullness to show that descent was in
the male line. From the nature of the gens, descent was either in the
female line or the male, and included but a moiety of the descendants
of the founder. It is precisely like the family among ourselves.
Those who are descended from the males bear the family name, and they
constitute a gens in the full sense of the term, but in a state of
dispersion, and without any bond of union excepting those nearest in
degree. The females lose, with their marriage, the family name, and
with their children are transferred to another family. Grote remarks
that Aristotle was the “son of the physician Nikomachus who belonged to
the gens of the Asklepiads.”[239] Whether Aristotle was of the gens of
his father depends upon the further question whether they both derived
their descent from Aesculapius, through males exclusively. This is
shown by Laertius, who states that “Aristotle was the son of Nikomachus
... and Nikomachus was descended from Nikomachus the son of Machaon,
the son of Aesculapius.”[240] Although the higher members of the series
may be fabulous, the manner of tracing the descent would show the gens
of the person. The statement of Hermann, on the authority of Isaeus,
is also to the point. “Every infant was registered in the phratria and
clan (γένος) of its father.”[241] Registration in the gens of the
father implies that his children were of his gens.

8. _The obligation not to marry in the gens excepting in specified
cases._ This obligation may be deduced from the consequences of
marriage. The wife by her marriage lost the religious rites of her
gens, and acquired those of her husband’s gens. The rule is stated
as so general as to imply that marriage was usually out of the gens.
“The virgin who quits her father’s house,” Wachsmuth remarks, “is no
longer a sharer of the paternal sacrificial hearth, but enters the
religious communion of her husband, and this gave sanctity to the
marriage tie.”[242] The fact of her registration is stated by Hermann
as follows: “Every newly married woman, herself a citizen, was on this
account enrolled in the phratry of her husband.”[243] Special religious
rites (_sacra gentilicia_) were common in the Grecian and Latin gens.
Whether the wife forfeited her agnatic rights by her marriage, as among
the Romans, I am unable to state. It is not probable that marriage
severed all connection with her gens, and the wife doubtless still
counted herself of the gens of her father.

The prohibition of intermarriage in the gens was fundamental in the
archaic period; and it undoubtedly remained after descent was changed
to the male line, with the exception of heiresses and female orphans
for whose case special provision was made. Although a tendency to free
marriage, beyond certain degrees of consanguinity, would follow the
complete establishment of the monogamian family, the rule requiring
persons to marry out of their own gens would be apt to remain so long
as the gens was the basis of the social system. The special provision
in respect to heiresses tends to confirm this supposition. Becker
remarks upon this question, that “relationship was, with trifling
limitations, no hinderance to marriage, which could take place within
all degrees of ἀγχιστεία, or συγγένεια, though naturally not in the
γένος itself.”[244]

9. _The right to adopt strangers into the gens._ This right was
practiced at a later day, at least in families; but it was done with
public formalities, and was doubtless limited to special cases.[245]
Purity of lineage became a matter of high concern in the Attic gentes,
interposing no doubt serious obstacles to the use of the right except
for weighty reasons.

10. _The right to elect and depose its chiefs._ This right undoubtedly
existed in the Grecian gentes in the early period. Presumptively it was
possessed by them while in the Upper Status of barbarism. Each gens
had its archon (ἀρχὸς), which was the common name for a chief. Whether
the office was elective, for example, in the Homeric period, or was
transmitted by hereditary right to the eldest son, is a question.
The latter was not the ancient theory of the office; and a change so
great and radical, affecting the independence and personal rights of
all the members of the gens, requires positive proof to override the
presumption against it. Hereditary right to an office, carrying with
it authority over, and obligations from, the members of a gens is a
very different thing from an office bestowed by a free election, with
the reserved power to depose for unworthy behavior. The free spirit
of the Athenian gentes down to the time of Solon and Cleisthenes
forbids the supposition, as to them, that they had parted with a
right so vital to the independence of the members of the gens. I have
not been able to find any satisfactory explanation of the tenure of
this office. Hereditary succession, if it existed, would indicate
a remarkable development of the aristocratical element in ancient
society, in derogation of the democratical constitution of the gentes.
Moreover, it would be a sign of the commencement, at least, of their
decadence. All the members of a gens were free and equal, the rich and
the poor enjoying equal rights and privileges, and acknowledging the
same in each other. We find liberty, equality and fraternity, written
as plainly in the constitution of the Athenian gentes as in those of
the Iroquois. Hereditary right to the principal office of the gens
is totally inconsistent with the older doctrine of equal rights and
privileges.

Whether the higher offices of anax, koiranos, and basileus were
transmitted by hereditary right from father to son, or were elective
or confirmative by a larger constituency, is also a question. It will
be considered elsewhere. The former would indicate the subversion, as
the latter the conservation, of gentile institutions. Without decisive
evidence to the contrary every presumption is adverse to hereditary
right. Some additional light will be gained on this subject when the
Roman gentes are considered. A careful re-investigation of the tenure
of this office would, not unlikely, modify essentially the received
accounts.

It may be considered substantially assured that the Grecian gentes
possessed the ten principal attributes named. All save three, namely,
descent in the male line, marrying into the gens in the case of
heiresses, and the possible transmission of the highest military office
by hereditary right, are found with slight variations in the gentes
of the Iroquois. It is thus rendered apparent that in the gentes,
both the Grecian and the Iroquois tribes possessed the same original
institution, the one having the gens in its later, and the other in its
archaic form.

Recurring now to the quotation from Mr. Grote, it may be remarked
that had he been familiar with the archaic form of the gens, and with
the several forms of the family anterior to the monogamian, he would
probably have modified essentially some portion of his statement. An
exception must be taken to his position that the basis of the social
system of the Greeks “was the house, hearth, or family.” The form of
the family in the mind of the distinguished historian was evidently
the Roman, under the iron-clad rule of a _pater familias_, to which
the Grecian family of the Homeric period approximated in the complete
domination of the father over the household. It would have been equally
untenable had other and anterior forms of the family been intended.
The gens, in its origin, is older than the monogamian family, older
than the syndyasmian, and substantially contemporaneous with the
punaluan. In no sense was it founded upon either. It does not recognize
the existence of the family of any form as a constituent of itself.
On the contrary, every family in the archaic as well as in the later
period, was partly within and partly without the gens, because husband
and wife must belong to different gentes. The explanation is both
simple and complete; namely, that the family springs up independently
of the gens with entire freedom to advance from a lower into a higher
form, while the gens is constant, as well as the unit of the social
system. The gens entered entire into the phratry, the phratry entered
entire into the tribe, and the tribe entered entire into the nation;
but the family could not enter entire into the gens because husband and
wife must belong to different gentes.

The question here raised is important, since not only Mr. Grote, but
also Niebuhr, Thirlwall, Maine, Mommsen, and many other able and
acute investigators have taken the same position with respect to
the monogamian family of the patriarchal type as the integer around
which society integrated in the Grecian and Roman systems. Nothing
whatever was based upon the family in any of its forms, because it
was incapable of entering a gens as a whole. The gens was homogeneous
and to a great extent permanent in duration, and as such, the natural
basis of a social system. A family of the monogamian type might have
become individualized and powerful in a gens, and in society at large;
but the gens nevertheless did not and could not recognize or depend
upon the family as an integer of itself. The same remarks are equally
true with respect to the modern family and political society. Although
individualized by property rights and privileges, and recognized as
a legal entity by statutory enactment, the family is not the unit of
the political system. The state recognizes the counties of which it
is composed, the county its townships, but the township takes no note
of the family; so the nation recognized its tribes, the tribes its
phratries, and the phratries its gentes; but the gens took no note
of the family. In dealing with the structure of society, organic
relations alone are to be considered. The township stands in the same
relation to political society that the gens did to gentile society.
Each is the unit of a system.

There are a number of valuable observations by Mr. Grote, upon the
Grecian gentes, which I desire to incorporate as an exposition of them;
although these observations seem to imply that they are no older than
the then existing mythology, or hierarchy of the gods from the members
of which some of the gentes claimed to have derived their eponymous
ancestor. In the light of the facts presented, the gentes are seen to
have existed long before this mythology was developed—before Jupiter or
Neptune, Mars or Venus were conceived in the human mind.

Mr. Grote proceeds: “Thus stood the primitive religious and social
union of the population of Attica in its gradually ascending scale—as
distinguished from the political union, probably of later introduction,
represented at first by the trittyes and naukraries, and in after times
by the ten Kleisthenean tribes, subdivided into trittyes and demes.
The religious and family bond of aggregation is the earlier of the
two; but the political bond, though beginning later, will be found to
acquire constantly increasing influence throughout the greater part
of this history. In the former, personal relation is the essential
and predominant characteristic—local relation being subordinate: in
the latter, property and residence become the chief considerations,
and the personal element counts only as measured along with these
accompaniments. All these phratric and gentile associations, the
larger as well as the smaller, were founded upon the same principles
and tendencies of the Grecian mind—a coalescence of the idea of
worship with that of ancestry, or of communion in certain special
religious rites with communion of blood, real or supposed. The god
or hero, to whom the assembled members offered their sacrifices, was
conceived as the primitive ancestor to whom they owed their origin;
often through a long list of intermediate names, as in the case of the
Milesian Hekatæus, so often before referred to. Each family had its
own sacred rites and funeral commemorations of ancestors, celebrated
by the master of the house, to which none but members of the family
were admissible.... The larger associations, called gens, phratry,
tribe, were formed by an extension of the same principle—of the family
considered as a religious brotherhood, worshiping some common god or
hero with an appropriate surname, and recognizing him as their joint
ancestor; and the festival of Theoenia, and Apaturia (the first Attic,
the second common to all the Ionian race) annually brought together
the members of these phratries and gentes for worship, festivity, and
maintenance of special sympathies; thus strengthening the larger ties
without effacing the smaller.... But the historian must accept as an
ultimate fact the earliest state of things which his witnesses make
known to him, and in the case now before us, the gentile and phratric
unions are matters into the beginning of which we cannot pretend to
penetrate.”[246]

“The gentes both at Athens, and in other parts of Greece, bore a
patronymic name, the stamp of their believed common paternity.[247]
... But at Athens, at least after the revolution of Kleisthenês, the
gentile name was not employed: a man was described by his own single
name, followed first by the name of his father, and next by that of
the deme to which he belonged,—as _Aeschinês son of Atromêtus, a
Kothôkid_.... The gens constituted a close incorporation, both as to
property and as to persons. Until the time of Solon, no man had any
power of testamentary disposition. If he died without children, his
gennêtes succeeded to his property, and so they continued to do even
after Solon, if he died intestate. An orphan girl might be claimed
in marriage of right by any member of the gens, the nearest agnates
being preferred; if she was poor, and he did not choose to marry
her himself, the law of Solon compelled him to provide her with a
dowry proportional to his enrolled scale of property, and to give
her out in marriage to another.... If a man was murdered, first his
near relations, next his gennêtes and phrators, were both allowed
and required to prosecute the crime at law; while his fellow demots,
or inhabitants of the same deme, did not possess the like right of
prosecuting. All that we hear of the most ancient Athenian laws is
based upon the gentile and phratric divisions, which are treated
throughout as extensions of the family. It is to be observed that this
division is completely independent of any property qualification—rich
men as well as poor being comprehended in the same gens. Moreover, the
different gentes were very unequal in dignity, arising chiefly from
the religious ceremonies of which each possessed the hereditary and
exclusive administration, and which, being in some cases considered of
pre-eminent sanctity in reference to the whole city, were therefore
nationalized. Thus the Eumolpidæ and Kêrykes, who supplied the
hierophant and superintendent of the mysteries of the Eleusinian
Dêmêtêr—and the Butadæ, who furnished the priestess of Athênê Polias,
as well as the priest of Poseidôn Erechtheus in the Acropolis—seem to
have been reverenced above all the other gentes.”[248]

Mr. Grote speaks of the gens as an extension of the family, and as
presupposing its existence; treating the family as primary and the gens
as secondary. This view, for the reasons stated, is untenable. The two
organizations proceed upon different principles and are independent
of each other. The gens embraces a part only of the descendants of a
supposed common ancestor, and excludes the remainder; it also embraces
a part only of a family, and excludes the remainder. In order to be
a constituent of the gens, the family should enter entire within its
folds, which was impossible in the archaic period, and constructive
only in the later. In the organization of gentile society the gens
is primary, forming both the basis and the unit of the system. The
family also is primary, and older than the gens; the punaluan and the
consanguine families having preceded it in the order of time; but it
was not a member of the organic series in ancient society any more than
it is in modern.

The gens existed in the Aryan family when the Latin, Grecian and
Sanskrit speaking tribes were one people, as is shown by the presence
in their dialects of the same term (gens, γένος, and _ganas_)
to express the organization. They derived it from their barbarous
ancestors, and more remotely from their savage progenitors. If
the Aryan family became differentiated as early as the Middle Period
of barbarism, which seems probable, the gens must have been transmitted
to them in its archaic form. After that event, and during the long
periods of time which elapsed between the separation of these tribes
from each other and the commencement of civilization, those changes in
the constitution of the gens, which have been noticed hypothetically,
must have occurred. It is impossible to conceive of the gens as
appearing, for the first time, in any other than its archaic form;
consequently the Grecian gens must have been originally in this form.
If, then, causes can be found adequate to account for so great a change
of descent as that from the female line to the male, the argument will
be complete, although in the end it substituted a new body of kindred
in the gens in place of the old. The growth of the idea of property,
and the rise of monogamy, furnished motives sufficiently powerful to
demand and obtain this change in order to bring children into the
gens of their father, and into a participation in the inheritance of
his estate. Monogamy assured the paternity of children, which was
unknown when the gens was instituted, and the exclusion of children
from the inheritance was no longer possible. In the face of the
new circumstances, the gens would be forced into reconstruction or
dissolution. When the gens of the Iroquois, as it appeared in the Lower
Status of barbarism, is placed beside the gens of the Grecian tribes as
it appeared in the Upper Status, it is impossible not to perceive that
they are the same organization, the one in its archaic and the other
in its ultimate form. The differences between them are precisely those
which would have been forced upon the gens by the exigencies of human
progress.

Along with these mutations in the constitution of the gens are found
the parallel mutations in the rule of inheritance. Property, always
hereditary in the gens, was first hereditary among the gentiles;
secondly, hereditary among the agnates, to the exclusion of the
remaining gentiles; and now, thirdly, hereditary among the agnates in
succession, in the order of their nearness to the decedent, which gave
an exclusive inheritance to the children as the nearest agnates. The
pertinacity with which the principle was maintained down to the time
of Solon, that the property should remain in the gens of the deceased
owner, illustrates the vitality of the organization through all these
periods. It was this rule which compelled the heiress to marry in her
own gens to prevent a transfer of the property by her marriage to
another gens. When Solon allowed the owner of property to dispose of it
by will, in case he had no children, he made the first inroad upon the
property rights of the gens.

How nearly the members of a gens were related, or whether they were
related at all, has been made a question. Mr. Grote remarked that
“Pollux informs us distinctly that the members of the same gens at
Athens were not commonly related by blood,—and even without any express
testimony we might have concluded such to be the fact. To what extent
the gens, at the unknown epoch of its formation was based upon actual
relationship, we have no means of determining, either with regard
to the Athenian or the Roman gentes, which were in the main points
analogous. Gentilism is a tie by itself; distinct from the family ties,
but presupposing their existence and extending them by an artificial
analogy, partly founded in religious belief, and partly on positive
compact, so as to comprehend strangers in blood. All the members of
one gens, or even of one phratry, believed themselves to be sprung,
not indeed from the same grandfather or great-grandfather, but from
the same divine or heroic ancestor.... And this fundamental belief,
into which the Greek mind passed with so much facility, was adopted and
converted by positive compact into the gentile and phratric principle
of union.... Doubtless Niebuhr, in his valuable discussion of the
ancient Roman gentes, is right in supposing that they were not real
families, procreated from any common historical ancestor. Still it
is not the less true (although he seems to suppose otherwise) that
the idea of the gens involved _the belief_ in a common first father,
divine or heroic—a genealogy which we may properly call fabulous, but
which was consecrated and accredited among the members of the gens
itself; and served as one important bond of union between them.... The
natural families of course changed from generation to generation, some
extending themselves, while others diminished or died out; but the gens
received no alterations, except through the procreation, extinction,
or subdivision of these component families. Accordingly the relations
of the families with the gens were in perpetual course of fluctuation,
and the gentile ancestorial genealogy, adapted as it doubtless was to
the early condition of the gens, became in process of time partially
obsolete and unsuitable. We hear of this genealogy but rarely, because
it is only brought before the public in certain cases pre-eminent and
venerable. But the humbler gentes had their common rites, and common
superhuman ancestor and genealogy, as well as the more celebrated: the
scheme and ideal basis was the same in all.”[249]

The several statements of Pollux, Niebuhr and Grote are true in a
certain sense, but not absolutely so. The lineage of a gens ran back of
the acknowledged ancestor, and therefore the gens of ancient date could
not have had a known progenitor; neither could the fact of a blood
connection be proved by their system of consanguinity; nevertheless
the gentiles not only _believed_ in their common descent, but were
justified in so believing. The system of consanguinity which pertained
to the gens in its archaic form, and which the Greeks probably once
possessed, preserved a knowledge of the relationships of all the
members of a gens to each other. This fell into desuetude with the
rise of the monogamian family, as I shall endeavor elsewhere to show.
The gentile name created a pedigree beside which that of a family
was insignificant. It was the function of this name to preserve the
fact of the common descent of those who bore it; but the lineage of
the gens was so ancient that its members could not prove the actual
relationship existing between them, except in a limited number of
cases through recent common ancestors. The name itself was the evidence
of a common descent, and conclusive, except as it was liable to
interruption through the adoption of strangers in blood in the previous
history of the gens. The practical denial of all relationship between
its members made by Pollux and Niebuhr, which would change the gens
into a purely fictitious association, has no ground to rest upon. A
large proportion of the number could prove their relationship through
descent from common ancestors within the gens, and as to the remainder
the gentile name they bore was sufficient evidence of common descent
for practical purposes. The Grecian gens was not usually a large body
of persons. Thirty families to a gens, not counting the wives of the
heads of families, would give, by the common rule of computation, an
average of one hundred and twenty persons to the gens.

As the unit of the organic social system, the gens would naturally
become the centre of social life and activity. It was organized as a
social body, with its archon or chief, and treasurer; having common
lands to some extent, a common burial place, and common religious
rites. Beside these were the rights, privileges and obligations which
the gens conferred and imposed upon all its members. It was in the gens
that the religious activity of the Greeks originated, which expanded
over the phratries, and culminated in periodical festivals common
to all the tribes. This subject has been admirably treated by M. De
Coulanges in his recent work on “The Ancient City.”

In order to understand the condition of Grecian society, anterior to
the formation of the state, it is necessary to know the constitution
and principles of the Grecian gens; for the character of the unit
determines the character of its compounds in the ascending series, and
can alone furnish the means for their explanation.



CHAPTER IX.

THE GRECIAN PHRATRY, TRIBE AND NATION.

    THE ATHENIAN PHRATRY.—HOW FORMED.—DEFINITION OF
    DIKÆARCHUS.—OBJECTS CHIEFLY RELIGIOUS.—THE PHRATRIARCH.—THE
    TRIBE.—COMPOSED OF THREE PHRATRIES.—THE PHYLO-BASILEUS.—THE
    NATION.—COMPOSED OF FOUR TRIBES.—BOULE, OR COUNCIL OF
    CHIEFS.—AGORA, OR ASSEMBLY OF THE PEOPLE.—THE BASILEUS.—TENURE
    OF THE OFFICE.—MILITARY AND PRIESTLY FUNCTIONS.—CIVIL
    FUNCTIONS NOT SHOWN.—GOVERNMENTS OF THE HEROIC AGE, MILITARY
    DEMOCRACIES.—ARISTOTLE’S DEFINITION OF A BASILEUS.—LATER
    ATHENIAN DEMOCRACY.—INHERITED FROM THE GENTES.—ITS POWERFUL
    INFLUENCE UPON ATHENIAN DEVELOPMENT.


The phratry, as we have seen, was the second stage of organization in
the Grecian social system. It consisted of several gentes united for
objects, especially religious, which were common to them all. It had
a natural foundation in the bond of kin, as the gentes in a phratry
were probably subdivisions of an original gens, a knowledge of the
fact having been preserved by tradition. “All the contemporary members
of the phratry of Hekatæus,” Mr. Grote remarks, “had a common god for
their ancestor at the sixteenth degree,”[250] which could not have
been asserted unless the several gentes comprised in the phratry of
Hekatæus, were supposed to be derived by segmentation from an original
gens. This genealogy, although in part fabulous, would be traced
according to gentile usages. Dikæarchus supposed that the practice of
certain gentes in supplying each other with wives, led to the phratric
organization for the performance of common religious rites.

This is a plausible explanation, because such marriages would
intermingle the blood of the gentes. On the contrary, gentes formed,
in the course of time, by the division of a gens and by subsequent
subdivisions, would give to all a common lineage, and form a natural
basis for their re-integration in a phratry. As such the phratry would
be a natural growth, and as such only can it be explained as a gentile
institution. The gentes thus united were brother gentes, and the
association itself was a brotherhood as the term imports.

Stephanus of Byzantium has preserved a fragment of Dikæarchus, in
which an explanation of the origin of the gens, phratry and tribe is
suggested. It is not full enough, with respect to either, to amount
to a definition; but it is valuable as a recognition of the three
stages of organization in ancient Grecian society. He uses patry (πάτρα)
in the place of gens (γένος), as Pindar did in a number of instances,
and Homer occasionally. The passage may be rendered: “Patry is one of
three forms of social union among the Greeks, according to Dikæarchus,
which we call respectively, patry, phratry, and tribe. The patry comes
into being when relationship, originally solitary, passes over into the
second stage [the relationship of parents with children and children
with parents], and derives its eponym from the oldest and chief member
of the patry, as Aicidas, Pelopidas.”

“But it came to be called phatria and phratria when certain ones gave
their daughters to be married into another patry. For the woman who was
given in marriage participated no longer in her paternal sacred rites,
but was enrolled in the patry of her husband; so that for the union,
formerly subsisting by affection between sisters and brothers, there
was established another union based on community of religious rites,
which they denominated a phratry; and so that again, while the patry
took its rise in the way we have previously mentioned, from the blood
relation between parents and children and children and parents, the
phratry took its rise from the relationship between brothers.”

“But tribe and tribesmen were so called from the coalescence into
communities and nations so called, for each of the coalescing bodies
was called a tribe.”[251]

It will be noticed that marriage out of the gens is here recognized
as a custom, and that the wife was enrolled in the gens, rather
than the phratry, of her husband. Dikæarchus, who was a pupil of
Aristotle, lived at a time when the gens existed chiefly as a pedigree
of individuals, its powers having been transferred to new political
bodies. He derived the origin of the gens from primitive times;
but his statement that the phratry originated in the matrimonial
practices of the gentes, while true doubtless as to the practice, is
but an opinion as to the origin of the organization. Intermarriages,
with common religious rites, would cement the phratric union; but
a more satisfactory foundation of the phratry may be found in the
common lineage of the gentes of which it was composed. It must be
remembered that the gentes have a history running back through the
three sub-periods of barbarism into the previous period of savagery,
antedating the existence even of the Aryan and Semitic families. The
phratry has been shown to have appeared among the American aborigines
in the Lower Status of barbarism; while the Greeks were familiar with
so much only of their former history as pertained to the Upper Status
of barbarism.

Mr. Grote does not attempt to define the functions of the phratry,
except generally. They were doubtless of a religious character chiefly;
but they probably manifested themselves, as among the Iroquois, at
the burial of the dead, at public games, at religious festivals, at
councils, and at the agoras of the people, where the grouping of chiefs
and people would be by phratries rather than by gentes. It would
also naturally show itself in the array of the military forces, of
which a memorable example is given by Homer in the address of Nestor
to Agamemnon.[252] “Separate the troops by tribes and by phratries,
Agamemnon, so that phratry may support phratry, and tribes, tribes
(κρῖν' ἄνδρας κατὰ φῦλα, κατὰ φρήτρας, Ἀγάμεμνον, ὡς φρήτρη φρήτρηφιν
ἀρήγῃ, φῦλα δὲ φύλοις). If thou wilt thus act, and the Greeks obey,
thou wilt then ascertain which of the commanders and which of the
soldiers is a coward, and which of them may be brave, for they will
fight their best.” The number from the same gens in a military force
would be too small to be made a basis in the organization of an army;
but the larger aggregations of the phratries and tribes would be
sufficient. Two things may be inferred from the advice of Nestor:
first, that the organization of armies by phratries and tribes had then
ceased to be common; and secondly, that in ancient times it had been
the usual plan of army organization, a knowledge of which had not then
disappeared. We have seen that the Tlascalans and Aztecs, who were in
the Middle Status of barbarism, organized and sent out their military
bands by phratries which, in their condition, was probably the only
method in which a military force could be organized. The ancient German
tribes organized their armies for battle on a similar principle.[253]
It is interesting to notice how closely shut in the tribes of mankind
have been to the theory of their social system.

The obligation of blood revenge, which was turned at a later day into
a duty of prosecuting the murderer before the legal tribunals, rested
primarily upon the gens of the slain person; but it was also shared in
by the phratry, and became a phratric obligation.[254] In the Eumenides
of Aeschylus, the Erinnys, after speaking of the slaying of his mother
by Orestes, put the question: “What lustral water of his phrators shall
await him?”[255] which seems to imply that if the criminal escaped
punishment final purification was performed by his phratry instead of
his gens. Moreover, the extension of the obligation from the gens to
the phratry implies a common lineage of all the gentes in a phratry.

Since the phratry was intermediate between the gens and the tribe,
and not invested with governmental functions, it was less fundamental
and less important than either of the others; but it was a common,
natural and perhaps necessary stage of re-integration between the
two. Could an intimate knowledge of the social life of the Greeks in
that early period be recovered, the phenomena would centre probably
in the phratric organization far more conspicuously than our scanty
records lead us to infer. It probably possessed more power and
influence than is usually ascribed to it as an organization. Among
the Athenians it survived the overthrow of the gentes as the basis of
a system, and retained, under the new political system, some control
over the registration of citizens, the enrollment of marriages and the
prosecution of the murderer of a phrator before the courts.

It is customary to speak of the four Athenian tribes as divided each
into three phratries, and of each phratry as divided into thirty
gentes; but this is merely for convenience in description. A people
under gentile institutions do not divide themselves into symmetrical
divisions and subdivisions. The natural process of their formation
was the exact reverse of this method; the gentes fell into phratries,
and ultimately into tribes, which reunited in a society or a people.
Each was a natural growth. That the number of gentes in each Athenian
phratry was thirty is a remarkable fact incapable of explanation by
natural causes. A motive sufficiently powerful, such as a desire for
a symmetrical organization of the phratries and tribes, might lead
to a subdivision of gentes by consent until the number was raised to
thirty in each of these phratries; and when the number in a tribe was
in excess, by the consolidation of kindred gentes until the number was
reduced to thirty. A more probable way would be by the admission of
alien gentes into phratries needing an increase of number. Having a
certain number of tribes, phratries and gentes by natural growth, the
reduction of the last two to uniformity in the four tribes could thus
have been secured. Once cast in this numerical scale of thirty gentes
to a phratry and three phratries to a tribe, the proportion might
easily have been maintained for centuries, except perhaps as to the
number of gentes in each phratry.

The religious life of the Grecian tribes had its centre and source in
the gentes and phratries. It must be supposed that in and through
these organizations, was perfected that marvelous polytheistic system,
with its hierarchy of gods, its symbols and forms of worship, which
impressed so powerfully the mind of the classical world. In no small
degree this mythology inspired the great achievements of the legendary
and historical periods, and created that enthusiasm which produced the
temple and ornamental architecture in which the modern world has taken
so much delight. Some of the religious rites, which originated in these
social aggregates, were nationalized from the superior sanctity they
were supposed to possess; thus showing to what extent the gentes and
phratries were nurseries of religion. The events of this extraordinary
period, the most eventful in many respects in the history of the Aryan
family, are lost, in the main, to history. Legendary genealogies
and narratives, myths and fragments of poetry, concluding with the
Homeric and Hesiodic poems, make up its literary remains. But their
institutions, arts, inventions, mythological system, in a word the
substance of civilization which they wrought out and brought with them,
were the legacy they contributed to the new society they were destined
to found. The history of the period may yet be reconstructed from these
various sources of knowledge, reproducing the main features of gentile
society as they appeared shortly before the institution of political
society.

As the gens had its archon, who officiated as its priest in the
religious observances of the gens, so each phratry had its phratriarch
(φρατριάρχος), who presided at its meetings, and officiated in
the solemnization of its religious rites. “The phratry,” observes
M. De Coulanges, “had its assemblies and its tribunals, and could
pass decrees. In it, as well as in the family, there was a god, a
priesthood, a legal tribunal and a government.”[256] The religious
rites of the phratries were an expansion of those of the gentes of
which it was composed. It is in these directions that attention should
be turned in order to understand the religious life of the Greeks.

Next in the ascending scale of organization was the tribe, consisting
of a number of phratries, each composed of gentes. The persons in
each phratry were of the same common lineage, and spoke the same
dialect. Among the Athenians as before stated each tribe contained
three phratries, which gave to each a similar organization. The tribe
corresponds with the Latin tribe, and also with those of the American
aborigines, an independent dialect for each tribe being necessary to
render the analogy with the latter complete. The concentration of
such Grecian tribes as had coalesced into a people, in a small area,
tended to repress dialectical variation, which a subsequent written
language and literature tended still further to arrest each tribe from
antecedent habits, however, was more or less localized in a fixed
area, through the requirements of a social system resting on personal
relations. It seems probable that each tribe had its council of chiefs,
supreme in all matters relating to the tribe exclusively. But since the
functions and powers of the general council of chiefs, who administered
the general affairs of the united tribes, were allowed to fall into
obscurity, it would not be expected that those of an inferior and
subordinate council would be preserved. If such a council existed,
which was doubtless the fact from its necessity under their social
system, it would have consisted of the chiefs of the gentes.

When the several phratries of a tribe united in the commemoration of
their religious observances it was in their higher organic constitution
as a tribe. As such, they were under the presidency, as we find it
expressed, of a phylo-basileus, who was the principal chief of the
tribe. Whether he acted as their commander in the military service I am
unable to state. He possessed priestly functions, always inherent in
the office of basileus, and exercised a criminal jurisdiction in cases
of murder; whether to try or to prosecute a murderer, I am unable to
state. The priestly and judicial functions attached to the office of
basileus tend to explain the dignity it acquired in the legendary and
heroic periods. But the absence of civil functions, in the strict sense
of the term, of the presence of which we have no satisfactory evidence,
is sufficient to render the term king, so constantly employed in
history as the equivalent of basileus, a misnomer. Among the Athenians
we have the tribe-basileus, where the term is used by the Greeks
themselves as legitimately as when applied to the general military
commander of the four united tribes. When each is described as a king
it makes the solecism of four tribes each under a king separately,
and the four tribes together under another king. There is a larger
amount of fictitious royalty here than the occasion requires. Moreover,
when we know that the institutions of the Athenians at the time were
essentially democratical it becomes a caricature of Grecian society.
It shows the propriety of returning to simple and original language,
using the term basileus where the Greeks used it, and rejecting king
as a false equivalent. Monarchy is incompatible with gentilism, for
the reason that gentile institutions are essentially democratical.
Every gens, phratry and tribe was a completely organized self-governing
body; and where several tribes coalesced into a nation the resulting
government would be constituted in harmony with the principles
animating its constituent parts.

The fourth and ultimate stage of organization was the nation united
in a gentile society. Where several tribes, as those of the Athenians
and the Spartans, coalesced into one people, it enlarged the society,
but the aggregate was simply a more complex duplicate of a tribe. The
tribes took the same place in the nation which the phratries held in
the tribe, and the gentes in the phratry. There was no name for the
organism[257] which was simply a society (_societas_), but in its place
a name sprang up for the people or nation. In Homer’s description of
the forces gathered against Troy, specific names are given to these
nations, where such existed, as Athenians, Ætolians, Locrians; but in
other cases they are described by the name of the city or country from
which they came. The ultimate fact is thus reached, that the Greeks,
prior to the times of Lycurgus and Solon, had but the four stages of
social organization (gens, phratry, tribe and nation), which was so
nearly universal in ancient society, and which has been shown to exist,
in part, in the Status of savagery, and complete in the Lower, in the
Middle and in the Upper Status of barbarism, and still subsisting after
civilization had commenced. This organic series expresses the extent
of the growth of the idea of government among mankind down to the
institution of political society. Such was the Grecian social system.
It gave a society, made up of a series of aggregates of persons, with
whom the government dealt through their personal relations to a gens,
phratry or tribe. It was also a gentile society as distinguished from a
political society, from which it was fundamentally different and easily
distinguishable.

The Athenian nation of the heroic age presents in its government three
distinct, and in some sense co-ordinate, departments or powers, namely:
first, the council of chiefs (βουλή); second, the agora (ἀγορά), or
assembly of the people; and third, the basileus (βασιλεύς), or general
military commander. Although municipal and subordinate military offices
in large numbers had been created, from the increasing necessities
of their condition, the principal powers of the government were held
by the three instrumentalities named. I am unable to discuss in an
adequate manner the functions and powers of the council, the agora
or the basileus, but will content myself with a few suggestions upon
subjects grave enough to deserve reinvestigation at the hands of
professed Hellenists.

I. _The Council of Chiefs._ The office of basileus in the Grecian
tribes has attracted far more attention than either the council or
the agora. As a consequence it has been unduly magnified while the
council and the agora have either been depreciated or ignored. We
know, however, that the council of chiefs was a constant phenomenon
in every Grecian nation from the earliest period to which our
knowledge extends down to the institution of political society. Its
permanence as a feature of their social system is conclusive evidence
that its functions were substantial, and that its powers, at least
presumptively, were ultimate and supreme. This presumption arises
from what is known of the archaic character and functions of the
council of chiefs under gentile institutions, and from its vocation.
How it was constituted in the heroic age, and under what tenure the
office of chief was held, we are not clearly informed; but it is a
reasonable inference that the council was composed of the chiefs of
the gentes. Since the number who formed the council was usually less
than the number of gentes, a selection must have been made in some
way from the body of chiefs. In what manner the selection was made
we are not informed. The vocation of the council as a legislative
body representing the principal gentes, and its natural growth
under the gentile organization, rendered it supreme in the first
instance, and makes it probable that it remained so to the end of its
existence. The increasing importance of the office of basileus, and
the new offices created in their military and municipal affairs with
their increase in numbers and in wealth, would change somewhat the
relations of the council to public affairs, and perhaps diminish its
importance; but it could not be overthrown without a radical change
of institutions. It seems probable, therefore, that every office of
the government, from the highest to the lowest, remained accountable
to the council for their official acts. The council was fundamental
in their social system;[258] and the Greeks of the period were free
self-governing peoples, under institutions essentially democratical. A
single illustration of the existence of the council may be given from
Aeschylus, simply to show that in the Greek conception it was always
present and ready to act. In _The Seven against Thebes_, Eteocles is
represented in command of the city, and his brother Polynices as one of
the seven chiefs who had invested the place. The assault was repelled,
but the brothers fell in a personal combat at one of the gates. After
this occurrence a herald says: “It is necessary for me to announce the
decree and good pleasure of the councilors of the people of this city
of Cadmus. It is resolved,”[259] etc. A council which can make and
promulgate a decree at any moment, which the people are expected to
obey, possesses the supreme powers of government. Aeschylus, although
dealing in this case with events in the legendary period, recognizes
the council of chiefs as a necessary part of the system of government
of every Grecian people. The boulê of ancient Grecian society was the
prototype and pattern of the senate under the subsequent political
system of the state.

II. _The Agora._ Although an assembly of the people became established
in the legendary period, with a recognized power to adopt or reject
public measures submitted by the council, it is not as ancient as the
council. The latter came in at the institution of the gentes; but
it is doubtful whether the agora existed, with the functions named,
back of the Upper Status of barbarism. It has been shown that among
the Iroquois, in the Lower Status, the people presented their wishes
to the council of chiefs through orators of their own selection, and
that a popular influence was felt in the affairs of the confederacy;
but an assembly of the people, with the right to adopt or reject
public measures, would evince an amount of progress in intelligence
and knowledge beyond the Iroquois. When the agora first appears, as
represented in Homer, and in the Greek Tragedies, it had the same
characteristics which it afterwards maintained in the ecclesia of
the Athenians, and in the _comitia curiata_ of the Romans. It was
the prerogative of the council of chiefs to mature public measures,
and then submit them to the assembly of the people for acceptance or
rejection, and their decision was final. The functions of the agora
were limited to this single act. It could neither originate measures,
nor interfere in the administration of affairs; but nevertheless
it was a substantial power, eminently adapted to the protection of
their liberties. In the heroic age certainly, and far back in the
legendary period, the agora is a constant phenomenon among the Grecian
tribes, and, in connection with the council, is conclusive evidence
of the democratical constitution of gentile society throughout these
periods. A public sentiment, as we have reason to suppose, was created
among the people on all important questions, through the exercise of
their intelligence, which the council of chiefs found it desirable
as well as necessary to consult, both for the public good and for
the maintenance of their own authority. After hearing the submitted
question discussed, the assembly of the people, which was free to all
who desired to speak,[260] made their decision in ancient times usually
by a show of hands.[261] Through participation in public affairs, which
affected the interests of all, the people were constantly learning the
art of self-government, and a portion of them, as the Athenians, were
preparing themselves for the full democracy subsequently established
by the constitutions of Cleisthenes. The assembly of the people to
deliberate upon public questions, not unfrequently derided as a mob by
writers who were unable to understand or appreciate the principle of
democracy, was the germ of the ecclesia (ἐκκλησία) of the Athenians,
and of the lower house of modern legislative bodies.

III. _The Basileus._ This officer became a conspicuous character in
the Grecian society of the heroic age, and was equally prominent in
the legendary period. He has been placed by historians in the centre
of the system. The name of the office (βασιλεύς) was used by the best
Grecian writers to characterize the government, which was styled
a basileia (βασιλεία). Modern writers, almost without exception,
translate basileus by the term _king_, and basileia by the term
_kingdom_, without qualification, and as exact equivalents. I wish to
call attention to this office of basileus, as it existed in the Grecian
tribes, and to question the correctness of this interpretation. There
is no similarity whatever between the basileia of the ancient Athenians
and the modern kingdom or monarchy; certainly not enough to justify the
use of the same term to describe both. Our idea of a kingly government
is essentially of a type in which a king, surrounded by a privileged
and titled class in the ownership and possession of the lands, rules
according to his own will and pleasure by edicts and decrees; claiming
an hereditary right to rule, because he cannot allege the consent
of the governed. Such governments have been self-imposed through the
principle of hereditary right, to which the priesthood have sought to
superadd a divine right. The Tudor kings of England and the Bourbon
kings of France are illustrations. Constitutional monarchy is a modern
development, and essentially different from the basileia of the Greeks.
The basileia was neither an absolute nor a constitutional monarchy;
neither was it a tyranny or a despotism. The question then is, what was
it.

Mr. Grote claims that “the primitive Grecian government is essentially
monarchical, reposing on personal feeling and divine right;”[262] and
to confirm this view he remarks further, that “the memorable dictum
in the Iliad is borne out by all that we hear in actual practice:
‘the rule of many is not a good thing; let us have one ruler only—one
king—him to whom Zeus has given the sceptre, with the tutelary
sanctions.’”[263] This opinion is not peculiar to Mr. Grote, whose
eminence as a historian all delight to recognize; but it has been
steadily and generally affirmed by historical writers on Grecian
themes, until it has come to be accepted as historical truth. Our
views upon Grecian and Roman questions have been moulded by writers
accustomed to monarchical government and privileged classes, who were
perhaps glad to appeal to the earliest known governments of the Grecian
tribes for a sanction of this form of government, as at once natural,
essential and primitive.

The true statement, as it seems to an American, is precisely the
reverse of Mr. Grote’s; namely, that the primitive Grecian government
was essentially democratical, reposing on gentes, phratries and
tribes, organized as self-governing bodies, and on the principles of
liberty, equality and fraternity. This is borne out by all we know of
the gentile organization, which has been shown to rest on principles
essentially democratical. The question then is, whether the office of
basileus passed in reality from father to son by hereditary right;
which, if true, would tend to show a subversion of these principles.
We have seen that in the Lower Status of barbarism the office of
chief was hereditary in a gens, by which is meant that the vacancy
was filled from the members of the gens as often as it occurred.
Where descent was in the female line, as among the Iroquois, an own
brother was usually selected to succeed the deceased chief, and where
descent was in the male line, as among the Ojibwas and Omahas, the
oldest son. In the absence of objections to the person such became the
rule; but the elective principle remained, which was the essence of
self-government. It cannot be claimed, on satisfactory proof, that
the oldest son of the basileus took the office, upon the demise of his
father, by absolute hereditary right. This is the essential fact; and
it requires conclusive proof for its establishment. The fact that the
oldest, or one of the sons, usually succeeded, which is admitted, does
not establish the fact in question; because by usage he was in the
probable line of succession by a free election from a constituency. The
presumption, on the face of Grecian institutions, is against succession
to the office of basileus by hereditary right; and in favor either of a
free election, or of a confirmation of the office by the people through
their recognized organizations, as in the case of the Roman rex.[264]
With the office of basileus transmitted in the manner last named, the
government would remain in the hands of the people. Because without an
election or confirmation he could not assume the office; and because
further, the power to elect or confirm implies the reserved right to
depose.

The illustration of Mr. Grote, drawn from the Iliad, is without
significance on the question made. Ulysses, from whose address the
quotation is taken, was speaking of the command of an army before
a besieged city. He might well say: “All the Greeks cannot by any
means rule here. The rule of many is not a good thing. Let us have
one koiranos, one basileus, to whom Zeus has given the sceptre, and
the divine sanctions in order that he may command us.”[265] Koiranos
and basileus are used as equivalents, because both alike signified
a general military commander. There was no occasion for Ulysses to
discuss or endorse any plan of government; but he had sufficient
reasons for advocating obedience to a single commander of the army
before a besieged city.

Basileia may be defined as a military democracy, the people being free,
and the spirit of the government, which is the essential thing, being
democratical. The basileus was their general, holding the highest, the
most influential and the most important office known to their social
system. For the want of a better term to describe the government,
basileia was adopted by Grecian writers, because it carried the idea
of a generalship which had then become a conspicuous feature in the
government. With the council and the agora both existing with the
basileus, if a more special definition of this form of government is
required, military democracy expresses it with at least reasonable
correctness; while the use of the term kingdom, with the meaning it
necessarily conveys, would be a misnomer.

In the heroic age the Grecian tribes were living in walled cities,
and were becoming numerous and wealthy through field agriculture,
manufacturing industries, and flocks and herds. New offices were
required, as well as some degree of separation of their functions;
and a new municipal system was growing up apace with their increasing
intelligence and necessities. It was also a period of incessant
military strife for the possession of the most desirable areas. Along
with the increase of property the aristocratic element in society
undoubtedly increased, and was the chief cause of those disturbances
which prevailed in Athenian society from the time of Theseus to the
times of Solon and Cleisthenes. During this period, and until the final
abolition of the office some time before the first Olympiad, (776 B.
C.) the basileus, from the character of his office and from the state
of the times, became more prominent and more powerful than any single
person in their previous experience. The functions of a priest and of a
judge were attached to or inherent in his office; and he seems to have
been _ex officio_ a member of the council of chiefs. It was a great as
well as a necessary office, with the powers of a general over the army
in the field, and over the garrison in the city, which gave him the
means of acquiring influence in civil affairs as well. But it does not
appear that he possessed civil functions. Prof. Mason remarks, that
“our information respecting the Grecian kings in the more historical
age is not ample or minute enough to enable us to draw out a detailed
scheme of their functions.”[266] The military and priestly functions of
the basileus are tolerably well understood, the judicial imperfectly,
and the civil functions cannot properly be said to have existed. The
powers of such an office under gentile institutions would gradually
become defined by the usage of experience, but with a constant tendency
in the basileus to assume new ones dangerous to society. Since the
council of chiefs remained as a constituent element of the government,
it may be said to have represented the democratic principles of their
social system, as well as the gentes, while the basileus soon came to
represent the aristocratic principle. It is probable that a perpetual
struggle was maintained between the council and the basileus, to hold
the latter within the limits of powers the people were willing to
concede to the office. Moreover, the abolition of the office by the
Athenians makes it probable that they found the office unmanageable,
and incompatible with gentile institutions, from the tendency to usurp
additional powers.

Among the Spartan tribes the ephoralty was instituted at a very early
period to limit the powers of the basileis in consequence of a similar
experience. Although the functions of the council in the Homeric
and the legendary periods are not accurately known, its constant
presence is evidence sufficient that its powers were real, essential
and permanent. With the simultaneous existence of the agora, and in
the absence of proof of a change of institutions, we are led to the
conclusion that the council, under established usages, was supreme
over gentes, phratries, tribes and nation, and that the basileus
was amenable to this council for his official acts. The freedom of
the gentes, of whom the members of the council were representatives,
presupposes the independence of the council, as well as its supremacy.

Thucydides refers incidentally to the governments of the traditionary
period, as follows: “Now when the Greeks were becoming more powerful,
and acquiring possession of property still more than before, many
tyrannies were established in the cities, from their revenues
becoming greater; whereas before there had been hereditary basileia
with specified powers.” (πρότερον δὲ ἦσαν ἐπὶ ῥητοῖς γέρασι πατρικαὶ
βασιλεῖαι)[267] The office was hereditary in the sense of perpetual
because it was filled as often as a vacancy occurred, but probably
hereditary in a gens, the choice being by a free election by his
gennêtes, or by nomination possibly by the council, and confirmation of
the gentes, as in the case of the rex of the Romans.

Aristotle has given the most satisfactory definition of the basileia
and of the basileus of the heroic period of any of the Grecian writers.
These then are the four kinds of basileia he remarks: the first is
that of the heroic times, which was a government over a free people,
with restricted rights in some particulars; for the basileus was their
general, their judge and their chief priest. The second, that of the
barbarians, which is an hereditary despotic government, regulated
by laws; the third is that which they call Aesymnetic, which is an
elective tyranny. The fourth is the Lacedaemonian, which is nothing
more than an hereditary generalship.[268] Whatever may be said of the
last three forms, the first does not answer to the idea of a kingdom
of the absolute type, nor to any recognizable form of monarchy.
Aristotle enumerates with striking clearness the principal functions
of the basileus, neither of which imply civil powers, and all of which
are consistent with an office for life, held by an elective tenure.
They are also consistent with his entire subordination to the council
of chiefs. The “restricted rights,” and the “specified powers” in
the definitions of these authors, tend to show that the government
had grown into this form in harmony with, as well as under, gentile
institutions. The essential element in the definition of Aristotle is
the freedom of the people, which in ancient society implies that the
people held the powers of the government under their control, that
the office of basileus was voluntarily bestowed, and that it could be
recalled for sufficient cause. Such a government as that described
by Aristotle can be understood as a military democracy, which, as a
form of government under free institutions, grew naturally out of the
gentile organization when the military spirit was dominant, when wealth
and numbers appeared, with habitual life in fortified cities, and
before experience had prepared the way for a pure democracy.

Under gentile institutions, with a people composed of gentes, phratries
and tribes, each organized as independent self-governing bodies, the
people would necessarily be free. The rule of a king by hereditary
right and without direct accountability in such a society was simply
impossible. The impossibility arises from the fact that gentile
institutions are incompatible with a king or with a kingly government.
It would require, what I think cannot be furnished, positive proof of
absolute hereditary right in the office of basileus, with the presence
of civil functions, to overcome the presumption which arises from the
structure and principles of ancient Grecian society. An Englishman,
under his constitutional monarchy, is as free as an American under the
republic, and his rights and liberties are as well protected; but he
owes that freedom and protection to a body of written laws, created
by legislation and enforced by courts of justice. In ancient Grecian
society, usages and customs supplied the place of written laws, and the
person depended for his freedom and protection upon the institutions of
his social system. His safeguard was pre-eminently in such institutions
as the elective tenure of office implies.

The reges of the Romans were, in like manner, military commanders, with
priestly functions attached to their office; and this so-called kingly
government falls into the same category of a military democracy. The
rex, as before stated, was nominated by the senate, and confirmed by
the _comitia curiata_; and the last of the number was deposed. With his
deposition the office was abolished, as incompatible with what remained
of the democratic principle, after the institution of Roman political
society.

The nearest analogues of kingdoms among the Grecian tribes were the
tyrannies, which sprang up here and there, in the early period, in
different parts of Greece. They were governments imposed by force,
and the power claimed was no greater than that of the feudal kings of
mediæval times. A transmission of the office from father to son through
a few generations in order to superadd hereditary right was needed
to complete the analogy. But such governments were so inconsistent
with Grecian ideas, and so alien to their democratic institutions,
that none of them obtained a permanent footing in Greece. Mr. Grote
remarks that “if any energetic man could by audacity or craft break
down the constitution and render himself permanent ruler according to
his own will and pleasure—even though he might rule well—he could never
inspire the people with any sentiment of duty towards him. His sceptre
was illegitimate from the beginning, and even the taking of his life,
far from being interdicted by that moral feeling which condemned the
shedder of blood in other cases, was considered meritorious.”[269] It
was not so much the illegitimate sceptre which aroused the hostility of
the Greeks, as the antagonism of democratical with monarchical ideas,
the former of which were inherited from the gentes.

When the Athenians established the new political system, founded upon
territory and upon property, the government was a pure democracy. It
was no new theory, or special invention of the Athenian mind, but
an old and familiar system, with an antiquity as great as that of
the gentes themselves. Democratic ideas had existed in the knowledge
and practice of their forefathers from time immemorial, and now
found expression in a more elaborate, and, in many respects, in an
improved government. The false element, that of aristocracy, which
had penetrated the system and created much of the strife in the
transitional period connected itself with the office of basileus,
and remained after this office was abolished; but the new system
accomplished its overthrow. More successfully than the remaining
Grecian tribes, the Athenians were able to carry forward their ideas of
government to their logical results. It is one reason why they became,
for their numbers, the most distinguished, the most intellectual and
the most accomplished race of men the entire human family has yet
produced. In purely intellectual achievements they are still the
astonishment of mankind. It was because the ideas which had been
germinating through the previous ethnical period, and which had become
interwoven with every fibre of their brains, had found a happy fruition
in a democratically constituted state. Under its life-giving impulses
their highest mental development occurred.

The plan of government instituted by Cleisthenes rejected the office of
a chief executive magistrate, while it retained the council of chiefs
in an elective senate, and the agora in the popular assembly. It is
evident that the council, the agora and the basileus of the gentes were
the germs of the senate, the popular assembly, and the chief executive
magistrate (king, emperor and president) of modern political society.
The latter office sprang from the military necessities of organized
society, and its development with the upward progress of mankind is
instructive. It can be traced from the common war-chief, first to the
Great War Soldier, as in the Iroquois Confederacy; secondly, to the
same military commander in a confederacy of tribes more advanced,
with the functions of a priest attached to the office, as the Teuctli
of the Aztec Confederacy; thirdly, to the same military commander in
a nation formed by a coalescence of tribes, with the functions of a
priest and of a judge attached to the office, as in the basileus of
the Greeks; and finally, to the chief magistrate in modern political
society. The elective archon of the Athenians, who succeeded the
basileus, and the president of modern republics, from the elective
tenure of the office, were the natural outcome of gentilism. We are
indebted to the experience of barbarians for instituting and developing
the three principal instrumentalities of government now so generally
incorporated in the plan of government in civilized states. The human
mind, specifically the same in all individuals in all the tribes and
nations of mankind, and limited in the range of its powers, works and
must work, in the same uniform channels, and within narrow limits of
variation. Its results in disconnected regions of space, and in widely
separated ages of time, articulate in a logically connected chain of
common experiences. In the grand aggregate may still be recognized the
few primary germs of thought, working upon primary human necessities,
which, through the natural process of development, have produced such
vast results.



CHAPTER X.

THE INSTITUTION OF GRECIAN POLITICAL SOCIETY.

    FAILURE OF THE GENTES AS A BASIS OF GOVERNMENT.—LEGISLATION
    OF THESEUS.—ATTEMPTED SUBSTITUTION OF CLASSES.—ITS
    FAILURE.—ABOLITION OF THE OFFICE OF BASILEUS.—THE
    ARCHONSHIP.—NAUCRARIES AND TRYTTYES.—LEGISLATION OF SOLON.—THE
    PROPERTY CLASSES.—PARTIAL TRANSFER OF CIVIL POWER FROM THE
    GENTES TO THE CLASSES.—PERSONS UNATTACHED TO ANY GENS.—MADE
    CITIZENS.—THE SENATE.—THE ECCLESIA.—POLITICAL SOCIETY
    PARTIALLY ATTAINED.—LEGISLATION OF CLEISTHENES.—INSTITUTION
    OF POLITICAL SOCIETY.—THE ATTIC DEME OR TOWNSHIP.—ITS
    ORGANIZATION AND POWERS.—ITS LOCAL SELF-GOVERNMENT.—THE LOCAL
    TRIBE OR DISTRICT.—THE ATTIC COMMONWEALTH.—ATHENIAN DEMOCRACY.


The several Grecian communities passed through a substantially similar
experience in transferring themselves from gentile into political
society; but the mode of transition can be best illustrated from
Athenian history, because the facts with respect to the Athenians are
more fully preserved. A bare outline of the material events will answer
the object in view, as it is not proposed to follow the growth of the
idea of government beyond the inauguration of the new political system.

It is evident that the failure of gentile institutions to meet the now
complicated wants of society originated the movement to withdraw all
civil powers from the gentes, phratries and tribes, and re-invest them
in new constituencies. This movement was gradual, extending through
a long period of time, and was embodied in a series of successive
experiments by means of which a remedy was sought for existing evils.
The coming in of the new system was as gradual as the going out of
the old, the two for a part of the time existing side by side. In
the character and objects of the experiments tried we may discover
wherein the gentile organization had failed to meet the requirements of
society, the necessity for the subversion of the gentes, phratries and
tribes as sources of power, and the means by which it was accomplished.

Looking backward upon the line of human progress, it may be remarked
that the stockaded village was the usual home of the tribe in the
Lower Status of barbarism. In the Middle Status joint-tenement houses
of adobe-bricks and of stone, in the nature of fortresses, make their
appearance. But in the Upper Status, cities surrounded with ring
embankments, and finally with walls of dressed stone, appear for the
first time in human experience. It was a great step forward when the
thought found expression in action of surrounding an area ample for
a considerable population with a defensive wall of dressed stone,
with towers, parapets and gates, designed to protect all alike and to
be defended by the common strength. Cities of this grade imply the
existence of a stable and developed field agriculture, the possession
of domestic animals in flocks and herds, of merchandise in masses and
of property in houses and lands. The city brought with it new demands
in the art of government by creating a changed condition of society.
A necessity gradually arose for magistrates and judges, military
and municipal officers of different grades, with a mode of raising
and supporting military levies which would require public revenues.
Municipal life and wants must have greatly augmented the duties and
responsibilities of the council of chiefs, and perhaps have overtaxed
its capacity to govern.

It has been shown that in the Lower Status of barbarism the government
was of one power, the council of chiefs; that in the Middle Status it
was of two powers, the council of chiefs and the military commander;
and that in the Upper Status it was of three powers, the council of
chiefs, the assembly of the people and the military commander. But
after the commencement of civilization, the differentiation of the
powers of the government had proceeded still further. The military
power, first devolved upon the basileus, was now exercised by generals
and captains under greater restrictions. By a further differentiation
the judicial power had now appeared among the Athenians. It was
exercised by the archons and dicasts. Magisterial powers were now
being devolved upon municipal magistrates. Step by step, and with the
progress of experience and advancement, these several powers had been
taken by differentiation from the sum of the powers of the original
council of chiefs, so far as they could be said to have passed from the
people into this council as a representative body.

The creation of these municipal offices was a necessary consequence of
the increasing magnitude and complexity of their affairs. Under the
increased burden gentile institutions were breaking down. Unnumbered
disorders existed, both from the conflict of authority, and from
the abuse of powers not as yet well defined. The brief and masterly
sketch by Thucydides of the condition of the Grecian tribes in the
transitional period,[270] and the concurrent testimony of other writers
to the same effect, leave no doubt that the old system of government
was failing, and that a new one had become essential to further
progress. A wider distribution of the powers of the government, a
clearer definition of them, and a stricter accountability of official
persons were needed for the welfare as well as safety of society; and
more especially the substitution of written laws, enacted by competent
authority, in the place of usages and customs. It was through the
experimental knowledge gained in this and the previous ethnical period
that the idea of political society or a state was gradually forming in
the Grecian mind. It was a growth running through centuries of time,
from the first appearance of a necessity for a change in the plan of
government, before the entire result was realized.

The first attempt among the Athenians to subvert the gentile
organization and establish a new system is ascribed to Theseus, and
therefore rests upon tradition; but certain facts remained to the
historical period which confirm some part at least of his supposed
legislation. It will be sufficient to regard Theseus as representing
a period, or a series of events. From the time of Cecrops to Theseus,
according to Thucydides, Attic people had always lived in cities,
having their own prytaneums and archons, and when not in fear of
danger did not consult their basileus, but governed their own affairs
separately according to their own councils. But when Theseus was
made basileus, he persuaded them to break up the council-houses and
magistracies of their several cities and come into relation with
Athens, with one council-house (βουλευτήριος), and one prytaneum
(πρυτανεῖον), to which all were considered as belonging.[271] This
statement embodies or implies a number of important facts, namely; that
the Attic population were organized in independent tribes, each having
its own territory in which the people were localized, with its own
council-house and prytaneum; and that while they were self-governing
societies they were probably confederated for mutual protection, and
elected their basileus or general to command their common forces. It is
a picture of communities democratically organized, needing a military
commander as a necessity of their condition, but not invested with
civil functions which their gentile system excluded. Under Theseus
they were brought to coalesce into one people, with Athens as their
seat of government, which gave them a higher organization than before
they had been able to form. The coalescence of tribes into a nation in
one territory is later in time than confederations, where the tribes
occupy independent territories. It is a higher organic process. While
the gentes had always been intermingled by marriage, the tribes were
now intermingled by obliterating territorial lines, and by the use of a
common council-hall and prytaneum. The act ascribed to Theseus explains
the advancement of their gentile society from a lower to a higher
organic form, which must have occurred at some time, and probably was
effected in the manner stated.

But another act is ascribed to Theseus evincing a more radical
plan, as well as an appreciation of the necessity for a fundamental
change in the plan of government. He divided the people into three
classes, irrespective of gentes, called respectively the _Eupatridæ_
or “well-born,” the _Geomori_ or “husbandmen,” and the _Demiurgi_ or
“artisans.” The principal offices were assigned to the first class both
in the civil administration and in the priesthood. This classification
was not only a recognition of property and of the aristocratic element
in the government of society, but it was a direct movement against the
governing power of the gentes. It was the evident intention to unite
the chiefs of the gentes with their families, and the men of wealth
in the several gentes, in a class by themselves, with the right to
hold the principal offices in which the powers of society were vested.
The separation of the remainder into two great classes traversed the
gentes again. Important results might have followed if the voting power
had been taken from the gentes, phratries and tribes, and given to
the classes, subject to the right of the first to hold the principal
offices. This does not appear to have been done, although absolutely
necessary to give vitality to the classes. Moreover, it did not change
essentially the previous order of things with respect to holding
office. Those now called Eupatrids were probably the men of the several
gentes who had previously been called into office. This scheme of
Theseus died out, because there was in reality no transfer of powers
from the gentes, phratries and tribes to the classes, and because such
classes were inferior to the gentes as the basis of a system.

The centuries that elapsed from the unknown time of Theseus to the
legislation of Solon (594 B. C.) formed one of the most important
periods in Athenian experience; but the succession of events is
imperfectly known. The office of basileus was abolished prior to
the first Olympiad (776 B. C.), and the archonship established in
its place. The latter seems to have been hereditary in a gens, and
it is stated to have been hereditary in a particular family within
the gens, the first twelve archons being called the Medontidæ, from
Medon, the first archon, claimed to have been the son of Codrus, the
last basileus. In the case of these archons, who held for life, the
same question exists which has elsewhere been raised with respect
to the basileus; that an election or confirmation by a constituency
was necessary before the office could be assumed. The presumption is
against the transmission of the office by hereditary right. In 711 B.
C. the office of archon was limited to ten years, and bestowed by free
election upon the person esteemed most worthy of the position. We are
now within the historical period, though near its threshold, where we
meet the elective principle with respect to the highest office in the
gift of the people clearly and completely established. It is precisely
what would have been expected from the constitution and principles of
the gentes, although the aristocratical principle, as we must suppose,
had increased in force with the increase of property, and was the
source through which hereditary right was introduced wherever found.
The existence of the elective principle with respect to the later
archons is not without significance in its relation to the question of
the previous practice of the Athenians. In 683 B. C. the office was
made elective annually, the number was increased to nine, and their
duties were made ministerial and judicial.[272] We may notice, in these
events, evidence of a gradual progress in knowledge with respect to the
tenure of office. The Athenian tribes had inherited from their remote
ancestors the office of archon (ἀρχός) as chief of the gens. It was
hereditary in the gens, as may fairly be supposed, and elective among
its members. After descent was changed to the male line the sons of
the deceased chief were within the line of succession, and one of their
number would be apt to be chosen in the absence of personal objections.
But now they reverted to this original office for the name of their
highest magistrate, made it elective irrespective of any gens, and
limited its duration, first to ten years, and finally to one. Prior
to this, the tenure of office to which they had been accustomed was
for life. In the Lower and also in the Middle Status of barbarism we
have found the office of chief, elective and for life; or during good
behavior, for this limitation follows from the right of the gens to
depose from office. It is a reasonable inference that the office of
chief in a Grecian gens was held by a free election and by the same
tenure. It must be regarded as proof of a remarkable advancement in
knowledge at this early period that the Athenian tribes substituted
a term of years for their most important office, and allowed a
competition of candidates. They thus worked out the entire theory of an
elective and representative office, and placed it upon its true basis.

In the time of Solon, it may be further noticed, the Court of
Areopagus, composed of ex-archons, had come into existence with power
to try criminals and with a censorship over morals, together with
a number of new offices in the military, naval and administrative
services. But the most important event that occurred about this
time was the institution of the _naucraries_ (ναυκραρίαι), twelve
in each tribe, and forty-eight in all; each of which was a local
circumscription of householders from which levies were drawn into
the military and naval service, and from which taxes were probably
collected. The naucrary was the incipient deme or township which,
when the idea of a territorial basis was fully developed, was to
become the foundation of the second great plan of government. By
whom the naucraries were instituted is unknown. “They must have
existed even before the time of Solon,” Boeckh remarks, “since the
presiding officers of the naucraries (πρυτάνεις τῶν ναυκράρων) are
mentioned before the time of his legislation; and when Aristotle
ascribes their institution to Solon, we may refer this account only
to their confirmation by the political constitution of Solon.”[273]
Twelve naucraries formed a trittys (τριττύς) a larger territorial
circumscription, but they were not necessarily contiguous. It was, in
like manner, the germ of the county, the next territorial aggregate
above the township.

Notwithstanding the great changes that had occurred in the
instrumentalities by which the government was administered, the people
were still in a gentile society, and living under gentile institutions.
The gens, phratry and tribe were in full vitality, and the recognized
sources of power. Before the time of Solon no person could become a
member of this society except through connection with a gens and tribe.
All other persons were beyond the pale of the government. The council
of chiefs remained, the old and time-honored instrument of government;
but the powers of the government were now coordinated between itself,
the agora or assembly of the people, the Court of Areopagus, and the
nine archons. It was the prerogative of the council to originate and
mature public measures for submission to the people, which enabled it
to shape the policy of the government. It doubtless had the general
administration of the finances, and it remained to the end, as it had
been from the beginning, the central feature of the government. The
assembly of the people had now come into increased prominence. Its
functions were still limited to the adoption or rejection of public
measures submitted to its decision by the council; but it began to
exercise a powerful influence upon public affairs. The rise of this
assembly as a power in the government is the surest evidence of
the progress of the Athenian people in knowledge and intelligence.
Unfortunately the functions and powers of the council of chiefs and of
the assembly of the people in this early period have been imperfectly
preserved, and but partially elucidated.

In 624 B. C. Draco had framed a body of laws for the Athenians which
were chiefly remarkable for their unnecessary severity; but this code
demonstrated that the time was drawing near in Grecian experience when
usages and customs were to be superseded by written laws. As yet the
Athenians had not learned the art of enacting laws as the necessity for
them appeared, which required a higher knowledge of the functions of
legislative bodies than they had attained. They were in that stage in
which lawgivers appear, and legislation is in a scheme or in gross,
under the sanction of a personal name. Thus slowly the great sequences
of human progress unfold themselves.

When Solon came into the archonship (594 B. C.) the evils prevalent
in society had reached an unbearable degree. The struggle for the
possession of property, now a commanding interest, had produced
singular results. A portion of the Athenians had fallen into slavery,
through debt,—the person of the debtor being liable to enslavement in
default of payment; others had mortgaged their lands and were unable
to remove the encumbrances; and as a consequence of these and other
embarrassments society was devouring itself. In addition to a body of
laws, some of them novel, but corrective of the principal financial
difficulties, Solon renewed the project of Theseus of organizing
society into classes, not according to callings as before, but
according to the amount of their property. It is instructive to follow
the course of these experiments to supersede the gentes and substitute
a new system, because we shall find the Roman tribes, in the time of
Servius Tullius, trying the same experiment for the same purpose.
Solon divided the people into four classes according to the measure
of their wealth, and going beyond Theseus, he invested these classes
with certain powers, and imposed upon them certain obligations. It
transferred a portion of the civil powers of the gentes, phratries and
tribes to the property classes. In proportion as the substance of power
was drawn from the former and invested in the latter, the gentes would
be weakened and their decadence would commence. But so far as classes
composed of persons were substituted for gentes composed of persons,
the government was still founded upon person, and upon relations purely
personal. The scheme failed to reach the substance of the question.
Moreover, in changing the council of chiefs into the senate of four
hundred, the members were taken in equal numbers from the four tribes,
and not from the classes. But it will be noticed that the idea of
property, as the basis of a system of government, was now incorporated
by Solon in the new plan of property classes. It failed, however, to
reach the idea of political society, which must rest upon territory
as well as property, and deal with persons through their territorial
relations. The first class alone were eligible to the high offices,
the second performed military service on horseback, the third as
infantry, and the fourth as light-armed soldiers. This last class were
the numerical majority. They were disqualified from holding office,
and paid no taxes; but in the popular assembly of which they were
members, they possessed a vote upon the election of all magistrates
and officers, with power to bring them to an account. They also had
power to adopt or reject all public measures submitted by the senate to
their decision. Under the constitution of Solon their powers were real
and durable, and their influence upon public affairs was permanent and
substantial. All freemen, though not connected with a gens and tribe,
were now brought into the government, to a certain extent, by becoming
citizens and members of the assembly of the people with the powers
named. This was one of the most important results of the legislation of
Solon.

It will be further noticed that the people were now organized as an
army, consisting of three divisions; the cavalry, the heavy-armed
infantry, and the light-armed infantry, each with its own officers of
different grades. The form of the statement limits the array to the
last three classes, which leaves the first class in the unpatriotic
position of appropriating to themselves the principal offices of
the government, and taking no part in the military service. This
undoubtedly requires modification. The same plan of organization, but
including the five classes, will re-appear among the Romans under
Servius Tullius, by whom the body of the people were organized as an
army (_exercitus_) fully officered and equipped in each subdivision.
The idea of a military democracy, different in organization but the
same theoretically as that of the previous period, re-appears in a new
dress both in the Solonian and in the Servian constitution.

In addition to the property element, which entered into the basis of
the new system, the territorial element was partially incorporated
through the naucraries before adverted to, in which it is probable
there was an enrollment of citizens and of their property to form a
basis for military levies and for taxation. These provisions, with
the senate, the popular assembly now called the ecclesia, the nine
archons, and the Court of Areopagus, gave to the Athenians a much more
elaborate government than they had before known, and requiring a higher
degree of intelligence for its management. It was also essentially
democratical in harmony with their antecedent ideas and institutions;
in fact a logical consequence of them, and explainable only as such.
But it fell short of a pure system in three respects: firstly, it was
not founded upon territory; secondly, all the dignities of the state
were not open to every citizen; and thirdly, the principle of local
self-government in primary organizations was unknown, except as it may
have existed imperfectly in the naucraries. The gentes, phratries and
tribes still remained in full vitality, but with diminished powers. It
was a transitional condition, requiring further experience to develop
the theory of a political system toward which it was a great advance.
Thus slowly but steadily human institutions are evolved from lower into
higher forms, through the logical operations of the human mind working
in uniform but predetermined channels.

There was one weighty reason for the overthrow of the gentes and the
substitution of a new plan of government. It was probably recognized
by Theseus, and undoubtedly by Solon. From the disturbed condition
of the Grecian tribes and the unavoidable movements of the people in
the traditionary period and in the times prior to Solon, many persons
transferred themselves from one nation to another, and thus lost their
connection with their own gens without acquiring a connection with
another. This would repeat itself from time to time, through personal
adventure, the spirit of trade, and the exigencies of warfare, until a
considerable number with their posterity would be developed in every
tribe unconnected with any gens. All such persons, as before remarked,
would be without the pale of the government with which there could be
no connection excepting through a gens and tribe. The fact is noticed
by Mr. Grote. “The phratries and gentes,” he remarks, “probably never
at any time included the whole population of the country—and the
population not included in them tended to become larger and larger
in the times anterior to Kleisthenes, as well as afterwards.”[274] As
early as the time of Lycurgus there was a considerable immigration
into Greece from the islands of the Mediterranean, and from the Ionian
cities of its eastern coasts, which increased the number of persons
unattached to any gens. When they came in families they would bring a
fragment of a new gens with them; but they would remain aliens unless
the new gens was admitted into a tribe. This probably occurred in a
number of cases, and it may assist in explaining the unusual number of
gentes in Greece. The gentes and phratries were close corporations,
both of which would have been adulterated by the absorption of these
aliens through adoption into a native gens. Persons of distinction
might be adopted into some gens, or secure the admission of their own
gens into some tribe; but the poorer class would be refused either
privilege. There can be no doubt that as far back as the time of
Theseus, and more especially in the time of Solon, the number of the
unattached class, exclusive of the slaves, had become large. Having
neither gens nor phratry they were also without direct religious
privileges, which were inherent and exclusive in these organizations.
It is not difficult to see in this class of persons a growing element
of discontent dangerous to the security of society.

The schemes of Theseus and of Solon made imperfect provision for their
admission to citizenship through the classes; but as the gentes and
phratries remained from which they were excluded, the remedy was still
incomplete. Mr. Grote further remarks, that “it is not easy to make out
distinctly what was the political position of the ancient Gentes and
Phratries, as Solon left them. The four tribes consisted altogether
of gentes and phratries, insomuch that no one could be included in
any one of the tribes who was not also a member of some gens and
phratry. Now the new probouleutic or pre-considering senate consisted
of 400 members,—100 from each of the tribes: persons not included in
any gens and phratry could therefore have had no access to it. The
conditions of eligibility were similar, according to ancient custom,
for the nine archons—of course, also, for the senate of Areopagus. So
that there remained only the public assembly, in which an Athenian,
not a member of these tribes, could take part: yet he was a citizen,
since he could give his vote for archons and senators, and could
take part in the annual decision of their accountability, besides
being entitled to claim redress for wrong from the archons in his own
person—while the alien could only do so through the intervention of an
avouching citizen, or Prostatês. It seems therefore that all persons
not included in the four tribes, whatever their grade or fortune might
be, were on the same level in respect to political privilege as the
fourth and poorest class of the Solonian census. It has already been
remarked, that even before the time of Solon, the number of Athenians
not included in the gentes or phratries was probably considerable: it
tended to become greater and greater, since these bodies were close
and unexpansive, while the policy of the new lawgiver tended to invite
industrious settlers from other parts of Greece to Athens.”[275] The
Roman Plebeians originated from causes precisely similar. They were
not members of any gens, and therefore formed no part of the _Populus
Romanus_. We may find in the facts stated one of the reasons of the
failure of the gentile organization to meet the requirements of
society. In the time of Solon, society had outgrown their ability to
govern, its affairs had advanced so far beyond the condition in which
the gentes originated. They furnished a basis too narrow for a state,
up to the measure of which the people had grown.

There was also an increasing difficulty in keeping the members of a
gens, phratry and tribe locally together. As parts of a governmental
organic series, this fact of localization was highly necessary. In the
earlier period, the gens held its lands in common, the phratries held
certain lands in common for religious uses, and the tribe probably held
other lands in common. When they established themselves in country
or city, they settled locally together by gentes, by phratries and
by tribes, as a consequence of their social organization. Each gens
was in the main by itself—not all of its members, for two gentes were
represented in every family, but the body who propagated the gens.
Those gentes belonging to the same phratry naturally sought contiguous
or at least near areas, and the same with the several phratries of
the tribe. But in the time of Solon, lands and houses had come to be
owned by individuals in severalty, with power of alienation as to
lands, but not of houses out of the gens. It doubtless became more
and more impossible to keep the members of a gens locally together,
from the shifting relations of persons to land, and from the creation
of new property by its members in other localities. The unit of their
social system was becoming unstable in place, and also in character.
Without stopping to develop this fact of their condition further, it
must have proved one of the reasons of the failure of the old plan of
government. The township, with its fixed property and its inhabitants
for the time being, yielded that element of permanence now wanting
in the gens. Society had made immense progress from its former
condition of extreme simplicity. It was very different from that which
the gentile organization was instituted to govern. Nothing but the
unsettled condition and incessant warfare of the Athenian tribes, from
their settlement in Attica to the time of Solon, could have preserved
this organization from overthrow. After their establishment in walled
cities, that rapid development of wealth and numbers occurred which
brought the gentes to the final test, and demonstrated their inability
to govern a people now rapidly approaching civilization. But their
displacement even then required a long period of time.

The seriousness of the difficulties to be overcome in creating a
political society are strikingly illustrated in the experience of the
Athenians. In the time of Solon, Athens had already produced able
men; the useful arts had attained a very considerable development;
commerce on the sea had become a national interest; agriculture and
manufactures were well advanced; and written composition in verse had
commenced. They were in fact a civilized people, and had been for two
centuries; but their institutions of government were still gentile,
and of the type prevalent throughout the Later Period of barbarism. A
great impetus had been given to the Athenian commonwealth by the new
system of Solon; nevertheless, nearly a century elapsed, accompanied
with many disorders, before the idea of a state was fully developed in
the Athenian mind. Out of the naucrary, a conception of a township as
the unit of a political system was finally elaborated; but it required
a man of the highest genius, as well as great personal influence, to
seize the idea in its fullness, and give it an organic embodiment. That
man finally appeared in Cleisthenes (509 B. C.), who must be regarded
as the first of Athenian legislators—the founder of the second great
plan of human government, that under which modern civilized nations are
organized.

Cleisthenes went to the bottom of the question, and placed the Athenian
political system upon the foundation on which it remained to the close
of the independent existence of the commonwealth. He divided Attica
into a hundred demes, or townships, each circumscribed by metes and
bounds, and distinguished by a name. Every citizen was required to
register himself, and to cause an enrollment of his property in the
deme in which he resided. This enrollment was the evidence as well
as the foundation of his civil privileges. The deme displaced the
naucrary. Its inhabitants were an organized body politic with powers
of local self-government, like the modern American township. This is
the vital and the remarkable feature of the system. It reveals at once
its democratic character. The government was placed in the hands of
the people in the first of the series of territorial organizations.
The demotæ elected a demarch (δήμαρχος), who had the custody of the
public register; he had also power to convene the demotæ for the
purpose of electing magistrates and judges, for revising the registry
of citizens, and for the enrollment of such as became of age during
the year. They elected a treasurer, and provided for the assessment
and collection of taxes, and for furnishing the quota of troops
required of the deme for the service of the state. They also elected
thirty dicasts or judges, who tried all causes arising in the deme
where the amount involved fell below a certain sum. Besides these
powers of local self-government, which is the essence of a democratic
system, each deme had its own temple and religious worship, and its
own priest, also elected by the demotæ. Omitting minor particulars, we
find the instructive and remarkable fact that the township, as first
instituted, possessed all the powers of local self-government, and
even upon a fuller and larger scale than an American township. Freedom
in religion is also noticeable, which was placed where it rightfully
belongs, under the control of the people. All registered citizens were
free, and equal in their rights and privileges, with the exception
of equal eligibility to the higher offices. Such was the new unit of
organization in Athenian political society, at once a model for a free
state, and a marvel of wisdom and knowledge. The Athenians commenced
with a democratic organization at the point where every people must
commence who desire to create a free state, and place the control of
the government in the hands of its citizens.

The second member of the organic territorial series consisted of ten
demes, united in a larger geographical district. It was called a local
tribe (φῦλον τοπικὸν), to preserve some part of the terminology of
the old gentile system.[276] Each district was named after an Attic
hero, and it was the analogue of the modern county. The demes in each
district were usually contiguous, which should have been true in every
instance to render the analogy complete; but in a few cases one or
more of the ten were detached, probably in consequence of the local
separation of portions of the original consanguine tribe who desired
to have their deme incorporated in the district of their immediate
kinsmen. The inhabitants of each district or county were also a body
politic, with certain powers of local self-government. They elected a
phylarch (φύλαρχος), who commanded the cavalry; a taxiarch (ταξίαρχος),
who commanded the foot-soldiers, and a general (στρατηγός), who
commanded both; and as each district was required to furnish five
triremes, they probably elected as many trierarchs (τριήραρχος) to
command them. Cleisthenes increased the senate to five hundred, and
assigned fifty to each district. They were elected by its inhabitants.
Other functions of this larger body politic doubtless existed, but they
have been imperfectly explained.

The third and last member of the territorial series was the Athenian
commonwealth or state, consisting of ten local tribes or districts.
It was an organized body politic, embracing the aggregate of Athenian
citizens. It was represented by a senate, an ecclesia, the court of
Areopagus, the archons, and judges, and the body of elected military
and naval commanders.

Thus the Athenians founded the second great plan of government upon
territory and upon property. They substituted a series of territorial
aggregates in the place of an ascending series of aggregates of
persons. As a plan of government it rested upon territory which was
necessarily permanent, and upon property which was more or less
localized; and it dealt with its citizens, now localized in demes
through their territorial relations. To be a citizen of the state it
was necessary to be a citizen of a deme. The person voted and was taxed
in his deme, and he was called into the military service from his deme.
In like manner he was called by election into the senate, and to the
command of a division of the army or navy from the larger district of
his local tribe. His relations to a gens or phratry ceased to govern
his duties as a citizen. The contrast between the two systems is as
marked as their difference was fundamental. A coalescence of the people
into bodies politic in territorial areas now became complete.

The territorial series enters into the plan of government of modern
civilized nations. Among ourselves, for example, we have the township,
the county, the state, and the United States; the inhabitants of
each of which are an organized body politic with powers of local
self-government. Each organization is in full vitality and performs
its functions within a definite sphere in which it is supreme.
France has a similar series in the commune, the arrondissement, the
department, and the empire, now the republic. In Great Britain the
series is the parish, the shire, the kingdom, and the three kingdoms.
In the Saxon period the hundred seems to have been the analogue
of the township;[277] but already emasculated of the powers of
local self-government, with the exception of the hundred court. The
inhabitants of these several areas were organized as bodies politic,
but those below the highest with very limited powers. The tendency
to centralization under monarchical institutions has atrophied,
practically, all the lower organizations.

As a consequence of the legislation of Cleisthenes, the gentes,
phratries and tribes were divested of their influence, because their
powers were taken from them and vested in the deme, the local tribe and
the state, which became from thenceforth the sources of all political
power. They were not dissolved, however, even after this overthrow,
but remained for centuries as a pedigree and lineage, and as fountains
of religious life. In certain orations of Demosthenes, where the cases
involved personal or property rights, descents or rights of sepulture,
both the gens and phratry appear as living organizations in his
time.[278] They were left undisturbed by the new system so far as their
connection with religious rites, with certain criminal proceedings,
and with certain social practices were concerned, which arrested their
total dissolution. The classes, however, both those instituted by
Theseus and those afterwards created by Solon, disappeared after the
time of Cleisthenes.[279]

Solon is usually regarded as the founder of Athenian democracy, while
some writers attribute a portion of the work to Cleisthenes and
Theseus. We shall draw nearer the truth of the matter by regarding
Theseus, Solon and Cleisthenes as standing connected with three
great movements of the Athenian people, not to found a democracy,
for Athenian democracy was older than either, but to change the plan
of government from a gentile into a political organization. Neither
sought to change the existing principles of democracy which had been
inherited from the gentes. They contributed in their respective times
to the great movement for the formation of a state, which required
the substitution of a political in the place of gentile society. The
invention of a township, and the organization of its inhabitants as a
body politic, was the main feature in the problem. It may seem to us a
simple matter; but it taxed the capacities of the Athenians to their
lowest depths before the idea of a township found expression in its
actual creation. It was an inspiration of the genius of Cleisthenes;
and it stands as the master work of a master mind. In the new political
society they realized that complete democracy which already existed
in every essential principle, but which required a change in the plan
of government to give it a more ample field and a fuller expression.
It is precisely here, as it seems to the writer, that we have been
misled by the erroneous assumption of the great historian, Mr.
Grote, whose general views of Grecian institutions are so sound and
perspicuous, namely, that the early governments of the Grecian tribes
were _essentially monarchical_.[280] On this assumption it requires a
revolution of institutions to explain the existence of that Athenian
democracy under which the great mental achievements of the Athenians
were made. No such revolution occurred, and no radical change of
institutions was ever effected, for the reason that they were and
always had been _essentially democratical_. Usurpations not unlikely
occurred, followed by controversies for the restoration of the previous
order; but they never lost their liberties, or those ideas of freedom
and of the right of self-government which had been their inheritance in
all ages.

Recurring for a moment to the basileus, the office tended to make the
man more conspicuous than any other in their affairs. He was the first
person to catch the mental eye of the historian by whom he has been
metamorphosed into a king, notwithstanding he was made to reign, and
by divine right, over a rude democracy. As a general in a military
democracy, the basileus becomes intelligible, and without violating the
institutions that actually existed. The introduction of this office
did not change the principles of the gentes, phratries and tribes,
which in their organization were essentially democratical, and which of
necessity impressed that character on their gentile system. Evidence
is not wanting that the popular element was constantly active to
resist encroachments on personal rights. The basileus belongs to the
traditionary period, when the powers of government were more or less
undefined; but the council of chiefs existed in the centre of the
system, and also the gentes, phratries and tribes in full vitality.
These are sufficient to determine the character of the government.[281]

The government as reconstituted by Cleisthenes contrasted strongly
with that previous to the time of Solon. But the transition was not
only natural but inevitable if the people followed their ideas to
their logical results. It was a change of plan, but not of principles
nor even of instrumentalities. The council of chiefs remained in
the senate, the agora in the ecclesia; the three highest archons
were respectively ministers of state, of religion, and of justice as
before, while the six inferior archons exercised judicial functions in
connection with the courts, and the large body of dicasts now elected
annually for judicial service. No executive officer existed under
the system, which is one of its striking peculiarities. The nearest
approach to it was the president of the senate, who was elected by
lot for a single day, without the possibility of a re-election during
the year. For a single day he presided over the popular assembly,
and held the keys of the citadel and of the treasury. Under the new
government the popular assembly held the substance of power, and guided
the destiny of Athens. The new element which gave stability and order
to the state was the deme or township, with its complete autonomy,
and local self-government. A hundred demes similarly organized would
determine the general movement of the commonwealth. As the unit, so
the compound. It is here that the people, as before remarked, must
begin if they would learn the art of self-government, and maintain
equal laws, and equal rights and privileges. They must retain in their
hands all the powers of society not necessary to the state to insure
an efficient general administration, as well as the control of the
administration itself.

Athens rose rapidly into influence and distinction under the
new political system. That remarkable development of genius and
intelligence, which raised the Athenians to the highest eminence among
the historical nations of mankind, occurred under the inspiration of
democratic institutions.

With the institution of political society under Cleisthenes, the
gentile organization was laid aside as a portion of the rags of
barbarism. Their ancestors had lived for untold centuries in gentilism,
with which they had achieved all the elements of civilization,
including a written language, as well as entered upon a civilized
career. The history of the gentile organization will remain as a
perpetual monument of the anterior ages, identified as it has been with
the most remarkable and extended experience of mankind. It must ever be
ranked as one of the most remarkable institutions of the human family.

In this brief and inadequate review the discussion has been confined
to the main course of events in Athenian history. Whatever was true of
the Athenian tribes will be found substantially true of the remaining
Grecian tribes, though not exhibited on so broad or so grand a scale.
The discussion tends to render still more apparent one of the main
propositions advanced—that the idea of government in all the tribes of
mankind has been a growth through successive stages of development.



CHAPTER XI.

THE ROMAN GENS.

    ITALIAN TRIBES ORGANIZED IN GENTES.—FOUNDING OF
    ROME.—TRIBES ORGANIZED INTO A MILITARY DEMOCRACY.—THE ROMAN
    GENS.—DEFINITION OF A GENTILIS BY CICERO.—BY FESTUS.—BY
    VARRO.—DESCENT IN MALE LINE.—MARRYING OUT OF THE GENS.—RIGHTS
    AND OBLIGATIONS OF THE MEMBERS OF A GENS.—DEMOCRATIC
    CONSTITUTION OF ANCIENT LATIN SOCIETY.—NUMBER OF PERSONS IN A
    GENS.


When the Latins, and their congeners the Sabellians, the Oscans and the
Umbrians, entered the Italian peninsula probably as one people, they
were in possession of domestic animals, and probably cultivated cereals
and plants.[282] At the least they were well advanced in the Middle
Status of barbarism; and when they first came under historical notice
they were in the Upper Status, and near the threshold of civilization.

The traditionary history of the Latin tribes, prior to the time of
Romulus, is much more scanty and imperfect than that of the Grecian,
whose earlier relative literary culture and stronger literary
proclivities enabled them to preserve a larger proportion of their
traditionary accounts. Concerning their anterior experience, tradition
did not reach beyond their previous life on the Alban hills, and the
ranges of the Appenines eastward from the site of Rome. For tribes
so far advanced in the arts of life it would have required a long
occupation of Italy to efface all knowledge of the country from which
they came. In the time of Romulus[283] they had already fallen by
segmentation into thirty independent tribes, still united in a loose
confederacy for mutual protection. They also occupied contiguous
territorial areas. The Sabellians, Oscans, and Umbrians were in the
same general condition; their respective tribes were in the same
relations; and their territorial circumscriptions, as might have
been expected, were founded upon dialect. All alike, including their
northern neighbors the Etruscans, were organized in gentes, with
institutions similar to those of the Grecian tribes. Such was their
general condition when they first emerged from behind the dark curtain
of their previous obscurity, and the light of history fell upon them.

Roman history has touched but slightly the particulars of a vast
experience anterior to the founding of Rome (about 753 B. C.). The
Italian tribes had then become numerous and populous; they had become
strictly agricultural in their habits, possessed flocks and herds of
domestic animals, and had made great progress in the arts of life. They
had also attained the monogamian family. All this is shown by their
condition when first made known to us; but the particulars of their
progress from a lower to a higher state had, in the main, fallen out of
knowledge. They were backward in the growth of the idea of government;
since the confederacy of tribes was still the full extent of their
advancement. Although the thirty tribes were confederated, it was in
the nature of a league for mutual defense, and neither sufficiently
close or intimate to tend to a nationality.

The Etruscan tribes were confederated; and the same was probably true
of the Sabellian, Oscan and Umbrian tribes. While the Latin tribes
possessed numerous fortified towns and country strongholds, they were
spread over the surface of the country for agricultural pursuits,
and for the maintenance of their flocks and herds. Concentration and
coalescence had not occurred to any marked extent until the great
movement ascribed to Romulus which resulted in the foundation of Rome.
These loosely united Latin tribes furnished the principal materials
from which the new city was to draw its strength. The accounts of these
tribes from the time of the supremacy of the chiefs of Alba down to the
time of Servius Tullius, were made up to a great extent of fables and
traditions; but certain facts remained in the institutions and social
usages transmitted to the historical period which tend, in a remarkable
manner, to illustrate their previous condition. They are even more
important than an outline history of actual events.

Among the institutions of the Latin tribes existing at the commencement
of the historical period were the gentes, curiæ and tribes upon which
Romulus and his successors established the Roman power. The new
government was not in all respects a natural growth; but modified in
the upper members of the organic series by legislative procurement.
The gentes, however, which formed the basis of the organization, were
natural growths, and in the main either of common or cognate lineage.
That is, the Latin gentes were of the same lineage, while the Sabine
and other gentes, with the exception of the Etruscans, were of cognate
descent. In the time of Tarquinius Priscus, the fourth in succession
from Romulus, the organization had been brought to a numerical scale,
namely: ten gentes to a curia, ten curiæ to a tribe, and three tribes
of the Romans; giving a total of three hundred gentes integrated in one
gentile society.

Romulus had the sagacity to perceive that a confederacy of tribes,
composed of gentes and occupying separate areas, had neither the
unity of purpose nor sufficient strength to accomplish more than the
maintenance of an independent existence. The tendency to disintegration
counteracted the advantages of the federal principle. Concentration and
coalescence were the remedy proposed by Romulus and the wise men of
his time. It was a remarkable movement for the period, and still more
remarkable in its progress from the epoch of Romulus to the institution
of political society under Servius Tullius. Following the course of the
Athenian tribes and concentrating in one city, they wrought out in five
generations a similar and complete change in the plan of government,
from a gentile into a political organization.

It will be sufficient to remind the reader of the general facts
that Romulus united upon and around the Palatine Hill a hundred
Latin gentes, organized as a tribe, the Ramnes; that by a fortunate
concurrence of circumstances a large body of Sabines were added to
the new community whose gentes, afterwards increased to one hundred,
were organized as a second tribe, the Tities; and that in the time
of Tarquinius Priscus a third tribe, the Luceres, had been formed,
composed of a hundred gentes drawn from surrounding tribes, including
the Etruscans. Three hundred gentes, in about the space of a hundred
years, were thus gathered at Rome, and completely organized under a
council of chiefs now called the Roman Senate, an assembly of the
people now called the _comitia curiata_, and one military commander,
the _rex_; and with one purpose, that of gaining a military ascendency
in Italy.

Under the constitution of Romulus, and the subsequent legislation of
Servius Tullius, the government was essentially a military democracy,
because the military spirit predominated in the government. But it
may be remarked in passing that a new and antagonistic element, the
Roman senate, was now incorporated in the centre of the social system,
which conferred patrician rank upon its members and their posterity. A
privileged class was thus created at a stroke, and intrenched first in
the gentile and afterwards in the political system, which ultimately
overthrew the democratic principles inherited from the gentes. It was
the Roman senate, with the patrician class it created, that changed the
institutions and the destiny of the Roman people, and turned them from
a career, analogous to that of the Athenians, to which their inherited
principles naturally and logically tended.

In its main features the new organization was a masterpiece of wisdom
for military purposes. It soon carried them entirely beyond the
remaining Italian tribes, and ultimately into supremacy over the entire
peninsula.

The organization of the Latin and other Italian tribes into gentes has
been investigated by Niebuhr, Hermann, Mommsen, Long and others; but
their several accounts fall short of a clear and complete exposition of
the structure and principles of the Italian gens. This is due in part
to the obscurity in which portions of the subject are enveloped, and
to the absence of minute details in the Latin writers. It is also in
part due to a misconception, by some of the first named writers, of the
relations of the family to the gens. They regard the gens as composed
of families, whereas it was composed of parts of families; so that the
gens and not the family was the unit of the social system. It may be
difficult to carry the investigation much beyond the point where they
have left it; but information drawn from the archaic constitution of
the gens may serve to elucidate some of its characteristics which are
now obscure.

Concerning the prevalence of the organization into gentes among the
Italian tribes, Niebuhr remarks as follows: “Should any one still
contend that no conclusion is to be drawn from the character of the
Athenian gennētes to that of the Roman gentiles, he will be bound
to show how an institution which runs through the whole ancient
world came to have a completely different character in Italy and in
Greece.... Every body of citizens was divided in this manner; the
Gephyræans and Salaminians as well as the Athenians, the Tusculans as
well as the Romans.”[284]

Besides the existence of the Roman gens, it is desirable to know the
nature of the organization; its rights, privileges and obligations,
and the relations of the gentes to each other, as members of a social
system. After these have been considered, their relations to the curiæ,
tribes, and resulting people of which they formed a part, will remain
for consideration in the next ensuing chapter.

After collecting the accessible information from various sources
upon these subjects it will be found incomplete in many respects,
leaving some of the attributes and functions of the gens a matter of
inference. The powers of the gentes were withdrawn, and transferred to
new political bodies before historical composition among the Romans
had fairly commenced. There was, therefore, no practical necessity
resting upon the Romans for preserving the special features of a system
substantially set aside. Gaius, who wrote his _Institutes_ in the early
part of the second century of our era, took occasion to remark that the
whole _jus gentilicium_ had fallen into desuetude, and that it was then
superfluous to treat the subject.[285] But at the foundation of Rome,
and for several centuries thereafter, the gentile organization was in
vigorous activity.

The Roman definition of a gens and of a gentilis, and the line in which
descent was traced should be presented before the characteristics
of the gens are considered. In the _Topics_ of Cicero a gentilis is
defined as follows: Those are gentiles who are of the same name among
themselves. This is insufficient. Who were born of free parents.
Even that is not sufficient. No one of whose ancestors has been a
slave. Something still is wanting. Who have never suffered capital
diminution. This perhaps may do; for I am not aware that Scaevola,
the Pontiff, added anything to this definition.[286] There is one by
Festus: “A gentilis is described as one both sprung from the same
stock, and who is called by the same name.”[287] Also by Varro: As
from an Aemilius men are born Aemilii, and gentiles; so from the name
Aemilius terms are derived pertaining to gentilism.[288]

Cicero does not attempt to define a gens, but rather to furnish
certain tests by which the right to the gentile connection might be
proved, or the loss of it be detected. Neither of these definitions
show the composition of a gens; that is, whether all, or a part only,
of the descendants of a supposed genarch were entitled to bear the
gentile name; and, if a part only, what part. With descent in the male
line the gens would include those only who could trace their descent
though males exclusively; and if in the female line, then through
females only. If limited to neither, then all the descendants would be
included. These definitions must have assumed that descent in the male
line was a fact known to all. From other sources it appears that those
only belonged to the gens who could trace their descent through its
male members. Roman genealogies supply this proof. Cicero omitted the
material fact that those were gentiles who could trace their descent
through males exclusively from an acknowledged ancestor within the
gens. It is in part supplied by Festus and Varro. From an Aemilius, the
latter remarks, men are born Aemilii, and gentiles; each must be born
of a male bearing the gentile name. But Cicero’s definition also shows
that a gentilis must bear the gentile name.

In the address of the Roman tribune Canuleius (445 B. C.), on his
proposition to repeal an existing law forbidding intermarriage between
patricians and plebeians, there is a statement implying descent in
the male line. For what else is there in the matter, he remarks, if a
patrician man shall wed a plebeian woman, or a plebeian man a patrician
woman? What right in the end is thereby changed? The children surely
follow the father, (_nempe patrem sequuntur liberi_.)[289]

A practical illustration, derived from transmitted gentile names,
will show conclusively that descent was in the male line. Julia, the
sister of Caius Julius Caesar, married Marcus Attius Balbus. Her name
shows that she belonged to the Julian gens.[290] Her daughter Attia,
according to custom, took the gentile name of her father and belonged
to the Attian gens. Attia married Caius Octavius, and became the mother
of Caius Octavius, the first Roman emperor. The son, as usual, took the
gentile name of his father, and belonged to the Octavian gens.[291]
After becoming emperor he added the names Caesar Augustus.

In the Roman gens descent was in the male line from Augustus back
to Romulus, and for an unknown period back of the latter. None were
gentiles except such as could trace their descent through males
exclusively from some acknowledged ancestor within the gens. But it was
unnecessary, because impossible, that all should be able to trace their
descent from the same common ancestor; and much less from the eponymous
ancestor.

It will be noticed that in each of the above cases, to which a large
number might be added, the persons married out of the gens. Such was
undoubtedly the general usage by customary law.

The Roman gens was individualized by the following rights, privileges
and obligations:

       I. _Mutual rights of succession to the property of deceased
             gentiles._
      II. _The possession of a common burial place._
     III. _Common religious rites; sacra gentilicia._
      IV. _The obligation not to marry in the gens._
       V. _The possession of lands in common._
      VI. _Reciprocal obligations of help, defense, and redress of
             injuries._
     VII. _The right to bear the gentile name._
    VIII. _The right to adopt strangers into the gens._
      IX. _The right to elect and depose its chiefs; query._

These several characteristics will be considered in the order named.

I. _Mutual rights of succession to the property of deceased gentiles._

When the law of the Twelve Tables was promulgated (451 B. C.), the
ancient rule, which presumptively distributed the inheritance among the
gentiles, had been superseded by more advanced regulations. The estate
of an intestate now passed, first, to his _sui heredes_, that is, to
his children; and, in default of children, to his lineal descendants
through males.[292] The living children took equally, and the children
of deceased sons took the share of their father equally. It will be
noticed that the inheritance remained in the gens; the children of the
female descendants of the intestate, who belonged to other gentes,
being excluded. Second, if there were no _sui heredes_, by the same
law, the inheritance then passed to the agnates.[293] The agnatic
kindred comprised all those persons who could trace their descent
through males from the same common ancestor with the intestate. In
virtue of such a descent they all bore the same gentile name, females
as well as males, and were nearer in degree to the decedent than the
remaining gentiles. The agnates nearest in degree had the preference;
first, the brothers and unmarried sisters; second, the paternal uncles
and unmarried aunts of the intestate, and so on until the agnatic
relatives were exhausted. Third, if there were no agnates of the
intestate, the same law called the gentiles to the inheritance.[294]
This seems at first sight remarkable; because the children of the
intestate’s sisters were excluded from the inheritance, and the
preference given to gentile kinsmen so remote that their relationship
to the intestate could not be traced at all, and only existed in virtue
of an ancient lineage preserved by a common gentile name. The reason,
however, is apparent; the children of the sisters of the intestate
belonged to another gens, and the gentile right predominated over
greater nearness of consanguinity, because the principle which retained
the property in the gens was fundamental. It is a plain inference
from the law of the Twelve Tables that inheritance began in the
inverse order, and that the three classes of heirs represent the three
successive rules of inheritance; namely: first, the gentiles; second,
the agnates, among whom were the children of the decedent after descent
was changed to the male line; and third, the children, to the exclusion
of the remaining agnates.

A female, by her marriage, suffered what was technically called a loss
of franchise or capital diminution (_deminutio capitis_), by which she
forfeited her agnatic rights. Here again the reason is apparent. If
after her marriage she could inherit as an agnate it would transfer
the property inherited from her own gens to that of her husband. An
unmarried sister could inherit, but a married sister could not.

With our knowledge of the archaic principles of the gens, we are
enabled to glance backward to the time when descent in the Latin
gens was in the female line, when property was inconsiderable, and
distributed among the gentiles; not necessarily within the life-time of
the Latin gens, for its existence reached back of the period of their
occupation of Italy. That the Roman gens had passed from the archaic
into its historical form is partially indicated by the reversion of
property in certain cases to the gentiles.[295]

“The right of succeeding to the property of members who died without
kin and intestate,” Niebuhr remarks, “was that which lasted the
longest; so long indeed, as to engage the attention of the jurists,
and even—though assuredly not as anything more than a historical
question—that of Gaius, the manuscript of whom is unfortunately
illegible in this part.”[296]

II. _A common burial place._

The sentiment of gentilism seems to have been stronger in the Upper
Status of barbarism than in earlier conditions, through a higher
organization of society, and through mental and moral advancement. Each
gens usually had a burial place for the exclusive use of its members
as a place of sepulture. A few illustrations will exhibit Roman usages
with respect to burial.

Appius Claudius, the chief of the Claudian gens, removed from Regili, a
town of the Sabines, to Rome in the time of Romulus, where in due time
he was made a senator, and thus a patrician. He brought with him the
Claudian gens, and such a number of clients that his accession to Rome
was regarded as an important event. Suetonius remarks that the gens
received from the state lands upon the Anio for their clients, and
a burial place for themselves near the capitol.[297] This statement
seems to imply that a common burial place was, at that time, considered
indispensable to a gens. The Claudii, having abandoned their Sabine
connection and identified themselves with the Roman people, received
both a grant of lands and a burial place for the gens, to place them in
equality of condition with the Roman gentes. The transaction reveals a
custom of the times.

The family tomb had not entirely superseded that of the gens in the
time of Julius Caesar, as was illustrated by the case of Quintilius
Varus, who, having lost his army in Germany, destroyed himself, and his
body fell into the hands of the enemy. The half-burned body of Varus,
says Paterculus, was mangled by the savage enemy; his head was cut off,
and brought to Maroboduus, and by him having been sent to Caesar, was
at length honored with burial in the gentile sepulchre.[298]

In his treatise on the laws, Cicero refers to the usages of his
own times in respect to burial in the following language: now the
sacredness of burial places is so great that it is affirmed to be wrong
to perform the burial independently of the sacred rites of the gens.
Thus in the time of our ancestors A. Torquatus decided respecting the
Popilian gens.[299] The purport of the statement is that it was a
religious duty to bury the dead with sacred rites, and when possible
in land belonging to the gens. It further appears that cremation and
inhumation were both practiced prior to the promulgation of the Twelve
Tables, which prohibited the burying or burning of dead bodies within
the city.[300] The columbarium, which would usually accommodate several
hundred urns, was eminently adapted to the uses of a gens. In the time
of Cicero the gentile organization had fallen into decadence, but
certain usages peculiar to it had remained, and that respecting a
common burial place among the number. The family tomb began to take the
place of that of the gens, as the families in the ancient gentes rose
into complete autonomy; nevertheless, remains of ancient gentile usages
with respect to burial manifested themselves in various ways, and were
still fresh in the history of the past.

III. _Common sacred rites; sacra gentilicia._

The Roman _sacra_ embody our idea of divine worship, and were
either public or private. Religious rites performed by a gens were
called _sacra privata_, or _sacra gentilicia_. They were performed
regularly at stated periods by the gens.[301] Cases are mentioned in
which the expenses of maintaining these rites had become a burden
in consequence of the reduced numbers in the gens. They were gained
and lost by circumstances, _e. g._, adoption or marriage.[302] “That
the members of the Roman gens had common sacred rites,” observes
Niebuhr, “is well known; there were sacrifices appointed for stated
days and places.”[303] The sacred rites, both public and private, were
under pontifical regulation exclusively, and not subject to civil
cognizance.[304]

The religious rites of the Romans seem to have had their primary
connection with the gens rather than the family. A college of pontiffs,
of curiones, and of augurs, with an elaborate system of worship under
these priesthoods, in due time grew into form and became established;
but the system was tolerant and free. The priesthood was in the main
elective.[305] The head of every family also was the priest of the
household.[306] The gentes of the Greeks and Romans were the fountains
from which flowed the stupendous mythology of the classical world.

In the early days of Rome many gentes had each their own sacellum
for the performance of their religious rites. Several gentes had
each special sacrifices to perform, which had been transmitted from
generation to generation, and were regarded as obligatory; as those of
the Nautii to Minerva, of the Fabii to Hercules, and of the Horatii
in expiation of the sororicide committed by Horatius.[307] It is
sufficient for my purpose to have shown generally that each gens had
its own religious rites as one of the attributes of the organization.

IV. _The obligation not to marry in the gens._

Gentile regulations were customs having the force of law. The
obligation not to marry in the gens was one of the number. It does not
appear to have been turned, at a later day, into a legal enactment;
but evidence that such was the rule of the gens appears in a number of
ways. The Roman genealogies show that marriage was out of the gens, of
which instances have been given. This, as we have seen, was the archaic
rule for reasons of consanguinity. A woman by her marriage forfeited
her agnatic rights, to which rule there was no exception. It was to
prevent the transfer of property by marriage from one gens to another,
from the gens of her birth to the gens of her husband. The exclusion of
the children of a female from all rights of inheritance from a maternal
uncle or maternal grandfather, which followed, was for the same reason.
As the female was required to marry out of her gens her children would
be of the gens of their father, and there could be no privity of
inheritance between members of different gentes.

V. _The possession of lands in common._

The ownership of lands in common was so general among barbarous tribes
that the existence of the same tenure among the Latin tribes is no
occasion for surprise. A portion of their lands seems to have been
held in severalty by individuals from a very early period. No time can
be assigned when this was not the case; but at first it was probably
the possessory right to lands in actual occupation, so often before
referred to, which was recognized as far back as the Lower Status of
barbarism.

Among the rustic Latin tribes, lands were held in common by each tribe,
other lands by the gentes, and still other by households.

Allotments of lands to individuals became common at Rome in the time
of Romulus, and afterwards quite general. Varro and Dionysius both
state that Romulus allotted two jugera (about two and a quarter acres)
to each man.[308] Similar allotments are said to have been afterwards
made by Numa and Servius Tullius. They were the beginnings of absolute
ownership in severalty, and presuppose a settled life as well as a
great advancement in intelligence. It was not only admeasured but
granted by the government, which was very different from a possessory
right in lands growing out of an individual act. The idea of absolute
individual ownership of land was a growth through experience, the
complete attainment of which belongs to the period of civilization.
These lands, however, were taken from those held in common by the
Roman people. Gentes, curiæ and tribes held certain lands in common
after civilization had commenced, beyond those held by individuals in
severalty.

Mommsen remarks that “the Roman territory was divided in the earliest
times into a number of clan-districts, which were subsequently employed
in the formation of the earliest rural wards (_tribus rusticæ_)....
These names are not, like those of the districts added at a later
period, derived from the localities, but are formed without exception
from the names of the clans.”[309] Each gens held an independent
district, and of necessity was localized upon it. This was a step in
advance, although it was the prevailing practice not only in the rural
districts, but also in Rome, for the gentes to localize in separate
areas. Mommsen further observes: “As each household had its own portion
of land, so the clan-household or village, had clan-lands belonging
to it, which, as will afterwards be shown, were managed up to a
comparatively late period after the analogy of house-lands, that is, on
the system of joint possession.... These clanships, however, were from
the beginning regarded not as independent societies, but as integral
parts of a political community (_civitas populi_). This first presents
itself as an aggregate of a number of clan-villages of the same stock,
language and manners, bound to mutual observance of law and mutual
legal redress and to united action in aggression and defense.”[310]
Clan is here used by Mommsen, or his translator, in the place of gens,
and elsewhere canton is used in the place of tribe, which are the
more singular since the Latin language furnishes specific terms for
these organizations which have become historical. Mommsen represents
the Latin tribes anterior to the founding of Rome as holding lands by
households, by gentes and by tribes; and he further shows the ascending
series of social organizations in these tribes; a comparison of which
with those of the Iroquois, discloses their close parallelism, namely,
the gens, tribe and confederacy.[311] The phratry is not mentioned
although it probably existed. The household referred to could scarcely
have been a single family. It is not unlikely that it was composed of
related families who occupied a joint-tenement house, and practiced
communism in living in the household.

VI. _Reciprocal obligations of help, defense and redress of injuries._

During the period of barbarism the dependence of the gentiles upon
each other for the protection of personal rights would be constant;
but after the establishment of political society, the gentilis, now
a citizen, would turn to the law and to the state for the protection
before administered by his gens. This feature of the ancient system
would be one of the first to disappear under the new. Accordingly
but slight references to these mutual obligations are found in the
early authors. It does not follow, however, that the gentiles did
not practice these duties to each other in the previous period; on
the contrary, the inference that they did is a necessary one from
the principles of the gentile organization. Remains of these special
usages appear, under special circumstances, well down in the historical
period. When Appius Claudius was cast into prison (about 432 B. C.),
Caius Claudius, then at enmity with him, put on mourning, as well as
the whole Claudian gens.[312] A calamity or disgrace falling upon one
member of the body was felt and shared by all. During the second Punic
war, Niebuhr remarks, “the gentiles united to ransom their fellows who
were in captivity, and were forbidden to do it by the senate. This
obligation is an essential characteristic of the gens.”[313] In the
case of Camillus, against whom a tribune had lodged an accusation on
account of the Veientian spoil, he summoned to his house before the day
appointed for his trial his tribesmen and clients to ask their advice,
and he received for an answer that they would collect whatever sum he
was condemned to pay; but to clear him was impossible.[314] The active
principle of gentilism is plainly illustrated in these cases. Niebuhr
further remarks that the obligation to assist their indigent gentiles
rested on the members of Roman gens.[315]

VII. _The right to bear the gentile name._

This followed necessarily from the nature of the gens. All such persons
as were born sons or daughters of a male member of the gens were
themselves members, and of right entitled to bear the gentile name. In
the lapse of time it was found impossible for the members of a gens
to trace their descent back to the founder, and, consequently, for
different families within the gens to find their connection through a
later common ancestor. Whilst this inability proved the antiquity of
the lineage, it was no evidence that these families had not sprung from
a remote common ancestor. The fact that persons were born in the gens,
and that each could trace his descent through a series of acknowledged
members of the gens, was sufficient evidence of gentile descent, and
strong evidence of the blood connection of all the gentiles. But some
investigators, Niebuhr among the number,[316] have denied the existence
of any blood relationship between the families in a gens, since they
could not show a connection through a common ancestor. This treats the
gens as a purely fictitious organization, and is therefore untenable.
Niebuhr’s inference against a blood connection from Cicero’s definition
is not sustainable. If the right of a person to bear the gentile name
were questioned, proof of the right would consist, not in tracing his
descent from the genarch, but from a number of acknowledged ancestors
within the gens. Without written records the number of generations
through which a pedigree might be traced would be limited. Few families
in the same gens might not be able to find a common ancestor, but it
would not follow that they were not of common descent from some remote
ancestor within the gens.[317]

After descent was changed to the male line the ancient names of the
gentes, which not unlikely were taken from animals,[318] or inanimate
objects, gave place to personal names. Some individual, distinguished
in the history of the gens, became its eponymous ancestor, and this
person, as elsewhere suggested, was not unlikely superseded by another
at long intervals of time. When a gens divided in consequence of
separation in area, one division would be apt to take a new name; but
such a change of name would not disturb the kinship upon which the
gens was founded. When it is considered that the lineage of the Roman
gentes, under changes of names, ascended to the time when the Latins,
Greeks and the Sanskrit speaking people of India were one people,
without reaching its source, some conception of its antiquity may be
gained. The loss of the gentile name at any time by any individual was
the most improbable of all occurrences; consequently its possession was
the highest evidence that he shared with his gentiles the same ancient
lineage. There was one way, and but one, of adulterating gentile
descent, namely: by the adoption of strangers in blood into the gens.
This practice prevailed, but the extent of it was small. If Neibuhr
had claimed that the blood relationship of the gentiles had become
attenuated by lapse of time to an inappreciable quantity between some
of them, no objection could be taken to his position; but a denial of
all relationship which turns the gens into a fictitious aggregation
of persons, without any bond of union, controverts the principle upon
which the gens came into existence, and which perpetuated it through
three entire ethnical periods.

Elsewhere I have called attention to the fact that the gens came in
with a system of consanguinity which reduced all consanguinei to a
small number of categories, and retained their descendants indefinitely
in the same. The relationships of persons were easily traced, no matter
how remote their actual common ancestor. In an Iroquois gens of five
hundred persons, all its members are related to each other and each
person knows or can find his relationship to every other; so that the
fact of kin was perpetually present in the gens of the archaic period.
With the rise of the monogamian family, a new and totally different
system of consanguinity came in, under which the relationships between
collaterals soon disappeared. Such was the system of the Latin and
Grecian tribes at the commencement of the historical period. That which
preceded it was, presumptively at least, Turanian, under which the
relationships of the gentiles to each other would have been known.

After the decadence of the gentile organization commenced, new gentes
ceased to form by the old process of segmentation; and some of those
existing died out. This tended to enhance the value of gentile descent
as a lineage. In the times of the empire, new families were constantly
establishing themselves in Rome from foreign parts, and assuming
gentile names to gain social advantages. This practice being considered
an abuse, the Emperor Claudius (A. D. 40-54), prohibited foreigners
from assuming Roman names, especially those of the ancient gentes.[319]
Roman families, belonging to the historical gentes, placed the highest
value upon their lineages both under the republic and the empire.

All the members of a gens were free, and equal in their rights and
privileges, the poorest as well as the richest, the distinguished as
well as the obscure; and they shared equally in whatever dignity the
gentile name conferred which they inherited as a birthright. Liberty,
equality and fraternity were cardinal principles of the Roman gens, not
less certainly than of the Grecian, and of the American Indian.

VIII. _The right of adopting strangers in blood into the gens._

In the times of the republic, and also of the empire, adoption into
the family, which carried the person into the gens of the family, was
practiced; but it was attended with formalities which rendered it
difficult. A person who had no children, and who was past the age to
expect them, might adopt a son with the consent of the pontifices, and
of the _comitia curiata_. The college of pontiffs were entitled to be
consulted lest the sacred rites of the family, from which the adopted
person was taken, might thereby be impaired;[320] as also the assembly,
because the adopted person would receive the gentile name, and might
inherit the estate of his adoptive father. From the precautions which
remained in the time of Cicero, the inference is reasonable that
under the previous system, which was purely gentile, the restrictions
must have been greater and the instances rare. It is not probable
that adoption in the early period was allowed without the consent of
the gens, and of the curia to which the gens belonged; and if so,
the number adopted must have been limited. Few details remain of the
ancient usages with respect to adoption.

IX. _The right of electing and deposing its chiefs; query._

The incompleteness of our knowledge of the Roman gentes is shown quite
plainly by the absence of direct information with respect to the
tenure of the office of chief (_princeps_). Before the institution of
political society each gens had its chief, and probably more than one.
When the office became vacant it was necessarily filled, either by the
election of one of the gentiles, as among the Iroquois, or taken by
hereditary right. But the absence of any proof of hereditary right,
and the presence of the elective principle with respect to nearly all
offices under the republic, and before that, under the _reges_, leads
to the inference that hereditary right was alien to the institutions of
the Latin tribes. The highest office, that of rex, was elective, the
office of senator was elective or by appointment, and that of consuls
and of inferior magistrates. It varied with respect to the college of
pontiffs instituted by Numa. At first the pontiffs themselves filled
vacancies by election. Livy speaks of the election of a _pontifex
maximus_ by the _comitia_ about 212 B. C.[321] By the _lex Domitia_
the right to elect the members of the several colleges of pontiffs and
of priests was transferred to the people, but the law was subsequently
modified by Sulla.[322]

The active presence of the elective principle among the Latin gentes
when they first come under historical notice, and from that time
through the period of the republic, furnishes strong grounds for
the inference that the office of chief was elective in tenure. The
democratic features of their social system, which present themselves
at so many points, were inherited from the gentes. It would require
positive evidence that the office of chief passed by hereditary right
to overcome the presumption against it. The right to elect carries with
it the right to depose from office, where the tenure is for life.

These chiefs, or a selection from them, composed the council of
the several Latin tribes before the founding of Rome, which was
the principal instrument of government. Traces of the three powers
co-ordinated in the government appear among the Latin tribes as they
did in the Grecian, namely: the council of chiefs, the assembly of the
people, to which we must suppose the more important public measures
were submitted for adoption or rejection, and the military commander.
Mommsen remarks that “All of these cantons [tribes] were in primitive
times politically sovereign, and each of them was governed by its
prince, and the co-operation of the council of elders, and the assembly
of the warriors.”[323] The order of Mommsen’s statement should be
reversed, and the statement qualified. This council, from its functions
and from its central position in their social system, of which it was
a growth, held of necessity the supreme power in civil affairs. It
was the council that governed, and not the military commander. “In
all the cities belonging to civilized nations on the coasts of the
Mediterranean,” Niebuhr observes, “a senate was a no less essential
and indispensable part of the state, than a popular assembly; it was a
select body of elder citizens; such a council, says Aristotle, there
always is, whether the council be aristocratical or democratical;
even in oligarchies, be the number of sharers in the sovereignty
ever so small, certain councilors are appointed for preparing public
measures.”[324] The senate of political society succeeded the council
of chiefs of gentile society. Romulus formed the first Roman senate of
a hundred elders; and as there were then but a hundred gentes, the
inference is substantially conclusive that they were the chiefs of
these gentes. The office was for life, and non-hereditary; whence the
final inference, that the office of chief was at the time elective.
Had it been otherwise there is every probability that the Roman senate
would have been instituted as an hereditary body. Evidence of the
essentially democratic constitution of ancient society meets us at
many points, which fact has failed to find its way into the modern
historical expositions of Grecian and Roman gentile society.

With respect to the number of persons in a Roman gens, we are
fortunately not without some information. About 474 B. C. the Fabian
gens proposed to the senate to undertake the Veientian war as a gens,
which they said required a constant rather than a large force.[325]
Their offer was accepted, and they marched out of Rome three hundred
and six soldiers, all patricians, amid the applause of their
countrymen.[326] After a series of successes they were finally cut off
to a man through an ambuscade. But they left behind them at Rome a
single male under the age of puberty, who alone remained to perpetuate
the Fabian gens.[327] It seems hardly credible that three hundred
should have left in their families but a single male child, below the
age of puberty, but such is the statement. This number of persons would
indicate an equal number of females, who, with the children of the
males, would give an aggregate of at least seven hundred members of the
Fabian gens.

Although the rights, obligations and functions of the Roman gens have
been inadequately presented, enough has been adduced to show that
this organization was the source of their social, governmental and
religious activities. As the unit of their social system it projects
its character upon the higher organizations into which it entered as
a constituent. A much fuller knowledge of the Roman gens than we now
possess is essential to a full comprehension of Roman institutions in
their origin and development.



CHAPTER XII.

THE ROMAN CURIA, TRIBE AND POPULUS.

    ROMAN GENTILE SOCIETY.—FOUR STAGES OF ORGANIZATION—1. THE GENS;
    2. THE CURIA, CONSISTING OF TEN GENTES; 3. THE TRIBE, COMPOSED
    OF TEN CURIÆ; 4. THE POPULUS ROMANUS, COMPOSED OF THREE
    TRIBES.—NUMERICAL PROPORTIONS—HOW PRODUCED.—CONCENTRATION OF
    GENTES AT ROME.—THE ROMAN SENATE.—ITS FUNCTIONS.—THE ASSEMBLY
    OF THE PEOPLE.—ITS POWERS.—THE PEOPLE SOVEREIGN.—OFFICE OF
    MILITARY COMMANDER (REX).—ITS POWERS AND FUNCTIONS.—ROMAN
    GENTILE INSTITUTIONS ESSENTIALLY DEMOCRATICAL.


Having considered the Roman gens, it remains to take up the curia
composed of several gentes, the tribe composed of several curiæ, and
lastly the Roman people composed of several tribes. In pursuing the
subject the inquiry will be limited to the constitution of society as
it appeared from the time of Romulus to that of Servius Tullius, with
some notice of the changes which occurred in the early period of the
republic while the gentile system was giving way, and the new political
system was being established.

It will be found that two governmental organizations were in existence
for a time, side by side, as among the Athenians, one going out and the
other coming in. The first was a society (_societas_), founded upon the
gentes; and the other a state (_civitas_), founded upon territory and
upon property, which was gradually supplanting the former. A government
in a transitional stage is necessarily complicated, and therefore
difficult to be understood. These changes were not violent but gradual,
commencing with Romulus and substantially completed, though not
perfected, by Servius Tullius; thus embracing a supposed period of
nearly two hundred years, crowded with events of great moment to the
infant commonwealth. In order to follow the history of the gentes to
the overthrow of their influence in the state it will be necessary,
after considering the curia, tribe and nation, to explain briefly the
new political system. The last will form the subject of the ensuing
chapter.

Gentile society among the Romans exhibits four stages of organization:
first, the gens, which was a body of consanguinei and the unit of the
social system; second, the curia, analogous to the Grecian phratry,
which consisted of ten gentes united in a higher corporate body;
third, the tribe, consisting of ten curiæ, which possessed some of the
attributes of a nation under gentile institutions; and fourth, the
Roman people (_Populus Romanus_), consisting, in the time of Tullus
Hostilius, of three such tribes united by coalescence in one gentile
society, embracing three hundred gentes. There are facts warranting
the conclusion that all the Italian tribes were similarly organized at
the commencement of the historical period; but with this difference,
perhaps, that the Roman curia was a more advanced organization than the
Grecian phratry, or the corresponding phratry of the remaining Italian
tribes; and that the Roman tribe, by constrained enlargement, became a
more comprehensive organization than in the remaining Italian stocks.
Some evidence in support of these statements will appear in the sequel.

Before the time of Romulus the Italians, in their various branches,
had become a numerous people. The large number of petty tribes, into
which they had become subdivided, reveals that state of unavoidable
disintegration which accompanies gentile institutions. But the federal
principle had asserted itself among the other Italian tribes as well
as the Latin, although it did not result in any confederacy that
achieved important results. Whilst this state of things existed, that
great movement ascribed to Romulus occurred, namely: the concentration
of a hundred Latin gentes on the banks of the Tiber, which was
followed by a like gathering of Sabine, Latin and Etruscan and other
gentes, to the additional number of two hundred, ending in their
final coalescence into one people. The foundations of Rome were thus
laid, and Roman power and civilization were to follow. It was this
consolidation of gentes and tribes under one government, commenced by
Romulus and completed by his successors, that prepared the way for the
new political system—for the transition from a government based upon
persons and upon personal relations, into one based upon territory and
upon property.

It is immaterial whether either of the seven so-called kings of Rome
were real or mythical persons, or whether the legislation ascribed to
either of them is fabulous or true, so far as this investigation is
concerned: because the facts with respect to the ancient constitution
of Latin society remained incorporated in Roman institutions, and
thus came down to the historical period. It fortunately so happens
that the events of human progress embody themselves, independently
of particular men, in a material record, which is crystallized in
institutions, usages and customs, and preserved in inventions and
discoveries. Historians, from a sort of necessity, give to individuals
great prominence in the production of events; thus placing persons,
who are transient, in the place of principles, which are enduring.
The work of society in its totality, by means of which all progress
occurs, is ascribed far too much to individual men, and far too little
to the public intelligence. It will be recognized generally that the
substance of human history is bound up in the growth of ideas, which
are wrought out by the people and expressed in their institutions,
usages, inventions and discoveries.

The numerical adjustment, before adverted to, of ten gentes to a curia,
ten curiæ to a tribe, and three tribes of the Roman people, was a
result of legislative procurement not older, in the first two tribes,
than the time of Romulus. It was made possible by the accessions gained
from the surrounding tribes, by solicitation or conquest; the fruits of
which were chiefly incorporated in the Tities and Luceres, as they were
successively formed. But such a precise numerical adjustment could not
be permanently maintained through centuries, especially with respect to
the number of gentes in each curia.

We have seen that the Grecian phratry was rather a religious and social
than a governmental organization. Holding an intermediate position
between the gens and the tribe, it would be less important than either,
until governmental functions were superadded. It appears among the
Iroquois in a rudimentary form, its social as distinguished from its
governmental character being at that early day equally well marked. But
the Roman curia, whatever it may have been in the previous period, grew
into an organization more integral and governmental than the phratry of
the Greeks; more is known, however, of the former than of the latter.
It is probable that the gentes comprised in each curia were, in the
main, related gentes; and that their reunion in a higher organization
was further cemented by intermarriages, the gentes of the same curia
furnishing each other with wives.

The early writers give no account of the institution of the curia; but
it does not follow that it was a new creation by Romulus. It is first
mentioned as a Roman institution in connection with his legislation,
the number of curiæ in two of the tribes having been established in his
time. The organization, as a phratry, had probably existed among the
Latin tribes from time immemorial.

Livy, speaking of the favor with which the Sabine women were regarded
after the establishment of peace between the Sabines and Latins through
their intervention, remarks that Romulus, for this reason, when he
had divided the people into thirty curiæ bestowed upon them their
names.[328] Dionysius uses the term phratry as the equivalent of curia,
but gives the latter also (κουρία),[329] and observes further, that
Romulus divided the curiæ into decades, the ten in each being of
course gentes.[330] In like manner Plutarch refers to the fact that
each tribe contained ten curiæ, which some say, he remarks, were
called after the Sabine women.[331] He is more accurate in the use of
language than Livy or Dionysius in saying that each tribe contained ten
curiæ, rather than that each was divided into ten, because the curiæ
were made of gentes as original unities, and not the gentes out of a
curia by subdivision. The work performed by Romulus was the adjustment
of the number of gentes in each curia, and the number of curiæ in
each tribe, which he was enabled to accomplish through the accessions
gained from the surrounding tribes. Theoretically each curia should
have been composed of gentes derived by segmentation from one or more
gentes, and the tribe by natural growth through the formation of more
than one curia, each composed of gentes united by the bond of a common
dialect. The hundred gentes of the Ramnes were Latin gentes. In their
organization into ten curiæ, each composed of ten gentes, Romulus
undoubtedly respected the bond of kin by placing related gentes in the
same curia, as far as possible, and then reached numerical symmetry
by arbitrarily taking the excess of gentes from one natural curia to
supply the deficiency in another. The hundred gentes of the tribe
Tities were, in the main, Sabine gentes. These were also arranged in
ten curiæ, and most likely on the same principle. The third tribe, the
Luceres, was formed later from gradual accessions and conquests. It
was heterogeneous in its elements, containing, among others, a number
of Etruscan gentes. They were brought into the same numerical scale
of ten curiæ each composed of ten gentes. Under this re-constitution,
while the gens, the unit of organization, remained pure and unchanged,
the curia was raised above its logical level, and made to include, in
some cases, a foreign element which did not belong to a strict natural
phratry; and the tribe also was raised above its natural level, and
made to embrace foreign elements that did not belong to a tribe as the
tribe naturally grew. By this legislative constraint the tribes, with
their curiæ and gentes, were made severally equal, while the third
tribe was in good part an artificial creation under the pressure of
circumstances. The linguistic affiliations of the Etruscans are still
a matter of discussion. There is a presumption that their dialect was
not wholly unintelligible to the Latin tribes, otherwise they would not
have been admitted into the Roman social system, which at the time was
purely gentile. The numerical proportions thus secured, facilitated the
governmental action of the society as a whole.

Niebuhr, who was the first to gain a true conception of the
institutions of the Romans in this period, who recognized the fact
that the people were sovereign, that the so-called kings exercised a
delegated power, and that the senate was based on the principle of
representation, each gens having a senator, became at variance with the
facts before him in stating in connection with this graduated scale,
that “such numerical proportions are an irrefragible proof that the
Roman houses [gentes][332] were not more ancient than the constitution;
but corporations formed by a legislator in harmony with the rest
of his scheme.”[333] That a small foreign element was forced into
the curiæ of the second and third tribes, and particularly into the
third, is undeniable; but that a gens was changed in its composition
or reconstructed or made, was simply impossible. A legislator could
not make a gens; neither could he make a curia, except by combining
existing gentes around a nucleus of related gentes; but he might
increase or decrease by constraint the number of gentes in a curia, and
increase or decrease the number of curiæ in a tribe. Niebuhr has also
shown that the gens was an ancient and universal organization among the
Greeks and Romans, which renders his preceding declaration the more
incomprehensible. Moreover it appears that the phratry was universal,
at least among the Ionian Greeks, leaving it probable that the curia,
perhaps under another name, was equally ancient among the Latin tribes.
The numerical proportions referred to were no doubt the result of
legislative procurement in the time of Romulus, and we have abundant
evidence of the sources from which the new gentes were obtained with
which these proportions might have been produced.

The members of the ten gentes united in a curia were called _curiales_
among themselves. They elected a priest, _curio_, who was the chief
officer of the fraternity. Each curia had its sacred rites, in the
observance of which the brotherhood participated; its _sacellum_ as
a place of worship, and its place of assembly where they met for the
transaction of business. Besides the _curio_, who had the principal
charge of their religious affairs, the _curiales_ also elected an
assistant priest, _flamen curialis_, who had the immediate charge of
these observances. The curia gave its name to the assembly of the
gentes, the _comitia curiata_ which was the sovereign power in Rome to
a greater degree than the senate under the gentile system. Such, in
general terms, was the organization of the Roman curia or phratry.[334]

Next in the ascending scale was the Roman tribe, composed of ten curiæ
and a hundred gentes. When a natural growth, uninfluenced externally,
a tribe would be an aggregation of such gentes as were derived by
segmentation from an original gens or pair of gentes; all the members
of which would speak the same dialect. Until the tribe itself divided,
by processes before pointed out, it would include all the descendants
of the members of these gentes. But the Roman tribe, with which alone
we are now concerned, was artificially enlarged for special objects and
by special means, but the basis and body of the tribe was a natural
growth.

Prior to the time of Romulus each tribe elected a chief officer whose
duties were magisterial, military and religious.[335] He performed in
the city magisterial duties for the tribe, as well as administered its
_sacra_, and he also commanded its military forces in the field.[336]
He was probably elected by the curiæ collected in a general assembly;
but here again our information is defective. It was undoubtedly an
ancient office in each Latin tribe, peculiar in character and held by
an elective tenure. It was also the germ of the still higher office of
_rex_, or general military commander, the functions of the two offices
being similar. The tribal chiefs are styled by Dionysius leaders of the
tribes (τριβῶν ἡγεμονίας).[337] When the three Roman tribes had
coalesced into one people, under one senate, one assembly of the
people, and one military commander, the office of tribal chief was
overshadowed and became less important; but the continued maintenance
of the office by an elective tenure confirms the inference of its
original popular character.

An assembly of the tribe must also have existed, from a remote
antiquity. Before the founding of Rome each Italian tribe was
practically independent, although the tribes were more or less united
in confederate relations. As a self-governing body each of these
ancient tribes had its council of chiefs (who were doubtless the chiefs
of the gentes), its assembly of the people, and its chiefs who commanded
its military bands. These three elements in the organization of the
tribe; namely, the council, the tribal chief, and the tribal assembly,
were the types upon which were afterwards modeled the _Roman senate_,
the _Roman rex_, and the _comitia curiata_. The tribal chief was in all
probability called by the name of _rex_ before the founding of Rome;
and the same remark is applicable to the name of senators (_senex_),
and the _comitia_ (_con-ire_). The inference arises, from what is
known of the condition and organization of these tribes, that their
institutions were essentially democratical. After the coalescence of
the three Roman tribes, the national character of the tribe was lost in
the higher organization; but it still remained as a necessary integer
in the organic series.

The fourth and last stage of organization was the Roman nation or
people, formed, as stated, by the coalescence of three tribes.
Externally the ultimate organization was manifested by a senate
(_senatus_), a popular assembly (_comitia curiata_), and a general
military commander (_rex_). It was further manifested by a city
magistracy, by an army organization, and by a common national
priesthood of different orders.[338]

A powerful city organization was from the first the central idea of
their governmental and military systems, to which all areas beyond Rome
remained provincial. Under the military democracy of Romulus, under the
mixed democratical and aristocratical organization of the republic,
and under the later imperialism it was a government with a great city
in its centre, a perpetual nucleus, to which all additions by conquest
were added as increments, instead of being made, with the city, common
constituents of the government. Nothing precisely like this Roman
organization, this Roman power, and the career of the Roman race, has
appeared in the experience of mankind. It will ever remain the marvel
of the ages.

As organized by Romulus they styled themselves the Roman People
(_Populus Romanus_), which was perfectly exact. They had formed a
gentile society and nothing more. But the rapid increase of numbers
in the time of Romulus, and the still greater increase between this
period and that of Servius Tullius, demonstrated the necessity for a
fundamental change in the plan of government. Romulus and the wise men
of his time had made the most of gentile institutions. We are indebted
to his legislation for a grand attempt to establish upon the gentes a
great national and military power; and thus for some knowledge of the
character and structure of institutions which might otherwise have
faded into obscurity, if they had not perished from remembrance. The
rise of the Roman power upon gentile institutions was a remarkable
event in human experience. It is not singular that the incidents that
accompanied the movement should have come to us tinctured with romance,
not to say enshrouded in fable. Rome came into existence through a
happy conception, ascribed to Romulus, and adopted by his successors,
of concentrating the largest possible number of gentes in a new city,
under one government, and with their united military forces under one
commander. Its objects were essentially military, to gain a supremacy
in Italy, and it is not surprising that the organization took the form
of a military democracy.

Selecting a magnificent situation upon the Tiber, where, after leaving
the mountain range it had entered the campagna, Romulus occupied the
Palatine Hill, the site of an ancient fortress, with a tribe of the
Latins of which he was the chief. Tradition derived his descent from
the chiefs of Alba, which is a matter of secondary importance. The new
settlement grew with marvelous rapidity, if the statement is reliable
that at the close of his life the military forces numbered 46,000 foot
and 1,000 horse, which would indicate some 200,000 people in the city
and in the surrounding region under its protection. Livy remarks that
it was an ancient device (_vetus consilium_) of the founders of cities
to draw to themselves an obscure and humble multitude, and then set up
for their progeny the autocthonic claim.[339] Romulus pursuing this
ancient policy is said to have opened an asylum near the Palatine, and
to have invited all persons in the surrounding tribe, without regard
to character or condition, to share with his tribes the advantages and
the destiny of the new city. A great crowd of people, Livy further
remarks, fled to this place from the surrounding territories, slave as
well as free, which was the first accession of foreign strength to
the new undertaking.[340] Plutarch,[341] and Dionysius[342] both refer
to the asylum or grove, the opening of which, for the object and with
the success named, was an event of probable occurrence. It tends to
show that the people of Italy had then become numerous for barbarians,
and that discontent prevailed among them in consequence, doubtless, of
the imperfect protection of personal rights, the existence of domestic
slavery, and the apprehension of violence. Of such a state of things
a wise man would naturally avail himself if he possessed sufficient
military genius to handle the class of men thus brought together.
The next important event in this romantic narrative, of which the
reader should be reminded, was the assault of the Sabines to avenge
the entrapment of the Sabine virgins, now the honored wives of their
captors. It resulted in a wise accommodation under which the Latins and
Sabines coalesced into one society, but each division retaining its
own military leader. The Sabines occupied the Quirinal and Capitoline
Hills. Thus was added the principal part of the second tribe, the
Tities, under Titius Tatius their military chief. After the death of
the latter they all fell under the military command of Romulus.

Passing over Numa Pompilius, the successor of Romulus, who established
upon a broader scale the religious institutions of the Romans, his
successor, Tullus Hostilius, captured the Latin city of Alba and
removed its entire population to Rome. They occupied the Cœlian
Hill, with all the privileges of Roman citizens. The number of citizens
was now doubled, Livy remarks;[343] but not likely from this source
exclusively. Ancus Martius, the successor of Tullus, captured the Latin
city of Politorium, and following the established policy, transferred
the people bodily to Rome.[344] To them was assigned the Aventine Hill,
with similar privileges. Not long afterwards the inhabitants of Tellini
and Ficana were subdued and removed to Rome, where they also occupied
the Aventine.[345] It will be noticed that in each case the gentes
brought to Rome, as well as the original Latin and Sabine gentes,
remained locally distinct. It was the universal usage in gentile
society, both in the Middle and in the Upper Status of barbarism, when
the tribes began to gather in fortresses and in walled cities, for the
gentes to settle locally together by gentes and by phratries.[346] Such
was the manner the gentes settled at Rome. The greater portion of these
accessions were united in the third tribe, the Luceres, which gave it a
broad basis of Latin gentes. It was not entirely filled until the time
of Tarquinius Priscus, the fourth military leader from Romulus, some of
the new gentes being Etruscan.

By these and other means three hundred gentes were gathered at Rome
and there organized in curiæ and tribes, differing somewhat in tribal
lineage; for the Ramnes, as before remarked, were Latins, the Tities
were in the main Sabines and the Luceres were probably in the main
Latins with large accessions from other sources. The Roman people
and organization thus grew into being by a more or less constrained
aggregation of gentes into curiæ, of curiæ into tribes, and of tribes
into one gentile society. But a model for each integral organization,
excepting the last, had existed among them and their ancestors from
time immemorial; with a natural basis for each curia in the kindred
gentes actually united in each, and a similar basis for each tribe in
the common lineage of a greater part of the gentes united in each.
All that was new in organization was the numerical proportions of
gentes to a curia, of curiæ to a tribe, and the coalescence of the
latter into one people. It may be called a growth under legislative
constraint, because the tribes thus formed were not entirely free
from the admixture of foreign elements; whence arose the new name
_tribus_=a third part of the people, which now came in to distinguish
this organism. The Latin language must have had a term equivalent to
the Greek phylon (φῦλον) = tribe, because they had the same
organization; but if so it has disappeared. The invention of this new
term is some evidence that the Roman tribes contained heterogeneous
elements, while the Grecian were pure, and kindred in the lineage of
the gentes they contained.

Our knowledge of the previous constitution of Latin society is mainly
derived from the legislation ascribed to Romulus, since it brings
into view the anterior organization of the Latin tribes, with such
improvements and modifications as the wisdom of the age was able to
suggest. It is seen in the senate as a council of chiefs, in the
_comitia curiata_ as an assembly of the people by curiæ, in the
office of a general military commander, and in the ascending series
of organizations. It is seen more especially in the presence of the
gentes, with their recognized rights, privileges and obligations.
Moreover, the government instituted by Romulus and perfected by his
immediate successors presents gentile society in the highest structural
form it ever attained in any portion of the human family. The time
referred to was immediately before the institution of political society
by Servius Tullius.

The first momentous act of Romulus, as a legislator, was the
institution of the Roman senate. It was composed of a hundred members,
one from each gens, or ten from each curia. A council of chiefs as
the primary instrument of government was not a new thing among the
Latin tribes. From time immemorial they had been accustomed to its
existence and to its authority. But it is probable that prior to the
time of Romulus it had become changed, like the Grecian councils,
into a pre-considering body, obligated to prepare and submit to
an assembly of the people the most important public measures for
adoption or rejection. This was in effect a resumption by the people
of powers before vested in the council of chiefs. Since no public
measure of essential importance could become operative until it
received the sanction of the popular assembly, this fact alone shows
that the people were sovereign, and not the council, nor the military
commander. It reveals also the extent to which democratic principles
had penetrated their social system. The senate instituted by Romulus,
although its functions were doubtless substantially similar to those
of the previous council of chiefs, was an advance upon it in several
respects. It was made up either of the chiefs or of the wise men of
the gentes. Each gens, as Niebuhr remarks, “sending its decurion who
was its alderman,”[347] to represent it in the senate. It was thus a
representative and an elective body in its inception, and it remained
elective, or selective, down to the empire. The senators held their
office for life, which was the only term of office then known among
them, and therefore not singular. Livy ascribes the selection of the
first senators to Romulus, which is probably an erroneous statement,
for the reason that it would not have been in accordance with the
theory of their institutions. Romulus chose a hundred senators, he
remarks, either because that number was sufficient, or because there
were but a hundred who could be created Fathers. Fathers certainly
they were called on account of their official dignity, and their
descendants were called patricians.[348] The character of the senate as
a representative body, the title of Fathers of the People bestowed upon
its members, the life-tenure of the office, but, more than all these
considerations, the distinction of patricians conferred upon their
children and lineal descendants in perpetuity, established at a stroke
an aristocracy of rank in the centre of their social system where it
became firmly intrenched. The Roman senate, from its high vocation,
from its composition, and from the patrician rank received by its
members and transmitted to their descendants, held a powerful position
in the subsequent state. It was this aristocratic element, now for the
first time planted in gentilism, which gave to the republic its mongrel
character, and which, as might have been predicted, culminated in
imperialism, and with it in the final dissolution of the race. It may
perhaps have increased the military glory and extended the conquests of
Rome, whose institutions, from the first, aimed at a military destiny;
but it shortened the career of this great and extraordinary people,
and demonstrated the proposition that imperialism of necessity will
destroy any civilized race. Under the republic, half aristocratic, half
democratic, the Romans achieved their fame, which one can but think
would have been higher in degree, and more lasting in its fruits, had
liberty and equality been nationalized, instead of unequal privileges
and an atrocious slavery. The long protracted struggle of the plebeians
to eradicate the aristocratic element represented by the senate, and to
recover the ancient principles of democracy, must be classed among the
heroic labors of mankind.

After the union of the Sabines the senate was increased to two hundred
by the addition of a hundred senators[349] from the gentes of the
tribe Tities; and when the Luceres had increased to a hundred gentes
in the time of Tarquinius Priscus, a third hundred senators were added
from the gentes of this tribe.[350] Cicero has left some doubt upon
this statement of Livy, by saying that Tarquinius Priscus doubled the
original number of the senators.[351] But Schmitz well suggests, as an
explanation of the discrepancy, that at the time of the final increase
the senate may have become reduced to a hundred and fifty members, and
been filled up to two hundred from the gentes of the first two tribes,
when the hundred were added from the third. The senators taken from the
tribes Ramnes and Tities were thenceforth called Fathers of the Greater
Gentes (_patres maiorum gentium_), and those of the Luceres Fathers
of the Lesser Gentes (_patres minorum gentium_).[352] From the form
of the statement the inference arises that the three hundred senators
represented the three hundred gentes, each senator representing a gens.
Moreover, as each gens doubtless had its principal chief (_princeps_),
it becomes extremely probable that this person was chosen for the
position either by his gens, or the ten were chosen together by the
curia, from the ten gentes of which it was composed. Such a method of
representation and of choice is most in accordance with what is known
of Roman and gentile institutions.[353] After the establishment of the
republic, the censors filled the vacancies in the senate by their own
choice, until it was devolved upon the consuls. They were generally
selected from the ex-magistrates of the higher grades.

The powers of the senate were real and substantial. All public measures
originated in this body—those upon which they could act independently,
as well as those which must be submitted to the popular assembly and
be adopted before they could become operative. It had the general
guardianship of the public welfare, the management of their foreign
relations, the levying of taxes and of military forces, and the general
control of revenues and expenditures. Although the administration of
religious affairs belonged to the several colleges of priests, the
senate had the ultimate power over religion as well. From its functions
and vocation it was the most influential body which ever existed under
gentile institutions.

The assembly of the people, with the recognized right of acting upon
important public measures to be discussed by them and adopted or
rejected, was unknown in the Lower, and probably in the Middle Status
of barbarism; but it existed in the Upper Status, in the agora of the
Grecian tribes, and attained its highest form in the ecclesia of the
Athenians; and it also existed in the assembly of the warriors among
the Latin tribes, attaining its highest form in the _comitia curiata_
of the Romans. The growth of property tended to the establishment of
the popular assembly, as a third power in gentile society, for the
protection of personal rights and as a shield against the encroachments
of the council of chiefs, and of the military commander. From the
period of savagery, after the institution of the gentes, down to
the times of Solon and Romulus, the popular element had always been
active in ancient gentile society. The council of chiefs was usually
open in the early conditions to the orators of the people, and public
sentiment influenced the course of events. But when the Grecian and
Latin tribes first came under historical notice the assembly of the
people to discuss and adopt or reject public measures was a phenomenon
quite as constant as that of a council of chiefs. It was more perfectly
systematized among the Romans under the constitution of Romulus than
among the Athenians in the time of Solon. In the rise and progress
of this institution may be traced the growth and development of the
democratic principle.

This assembly among the Romans was called the _comitia curiata_,
because the members of the gentes of adult age met in one assembly by
curiæ, and voted in the same manner. Each curia had one collective
vote, the majority in each was ascertained separately, and determined
what that vote should be.[354] It was the assembly of the gentes,
who alone were members of the government. Plebeians and clients, who
already formed a numerous class, were excluded, because there could
be no connection with the _Populus Romanus_, except through a gens
and tribe. This assembly, as before stated, could neither originate
public measures, nor amend such as were submitted to them; but none
of a certain grade could become operative until adopted by the
_comitia_. All laws were passed or repealed by this assembly; all
magistrates and high public functionaries, including the _rex_, were
elected by it on the nomination of the senate.[355] The _imperium_ was
conferred upon these persons by a law of the assembly (_lex curiata de
imperio_), which was the Roman method of investing with office. Until
the _imperium_ was thus conferred, the person, although the election
was complete, could not enter upon his office. The _comitia curiata_,
by appeal, had the ultimate decision in criminal cases involving the
life of a Roman citizen. It was by a popular movement that the office
of _rex_ was abolished. Although the assembly of the people never
acquired the power of originating measures, its powers were real and
influential. At this time the people were sovereign.

The assembly had no power to convene itself; but it is said to have
met on the summons of the _rex_, or, in his absence, on that of the
praefect (_praefectus urbi_). In the time of the republic it was
convened by the consuls, or, in their absence, by the praetor; and
in all cases the person who convened the assembly presided over its
deliberations.

In another connection the office of _rex_ has been considered. The
_rex_ was a general and also a priest, but without civil functions, as
some writers have endeavored to imply.[356] His powers as a general,
though not defined, were necessarily absolute over the military forces
in the field and in the city. If he exercised any civil powers in
particular cases, it must be supposed that they were delegated for
the occasion. To pronounce him a king, as that term is necessarily
understood, is to vitiate and mis-describe the popular government to
which he belonged, and the institutions upon which it rested. The
form of government under which the _rex_ and basileus appeared is
identified with gentile institutions and disappeared after gentile
society was overthrown. It was a peculiar organization having no
parallel in modern society, and is unexplainable in terms adapted
to monarchical institutions. A military democracy under a senate,
an assembly of the people, and a general of their nomination and
election, is a near, though it may not be a perfect, characterization
of a government so peculiar, which belongs exclusively to ancient
society, and rested on institutions essentially democratical. Romulus,
in all probability, emboldened by his great successes, assumed powers
which were regarded as dangerous to the senate and to the people, and
his assassination by the Roman chiefs is a fair inference from the
statements concerning his mysterious disappearance which have come
down to us. This act, atrocious as it must be pronounced, evinces that
spirit of independence, inherited from the gentes, which would not
submit to arbitrary individual power. When the office was abolished,
and the consulate was established in its place, it is not surprising
that two consuls were created instead of one. While the powers of the
office might raise one man to a dangerous height, it could not be the
case with two. The same subtlety of reasoning led the Iroquois, without
original experience, to create two war-chiefs of the confederacy
instead of one, lest the office of commander-in-chief, bestowed upon a
single man, should raise him to a position too influential.

In his capacity of chief priest the _rex_ took the auspices on
important occasions, which was one of the highest acts of the Roman
religious system, and in their estimation quite as necessary in the
field on the eve of a battle as in the city. He performed other
religious rites as well. It is not surprising that in those times
priestly functions are found among the Romans, as among the Greeks,
attached to or inherent in the highest military office. When the
abolition of this office occurred, it was found necessary to vest
in some one the religious functions appertaining to it, which were
evidently special; whence the creation of the new office of _rex
sacrificulus_, or _rex sacrorum_, the incumbent of which performed
the religious duties in question. Among the Athenians the same idea
reappears in the second of the nine archons, who was called _archon
basileus_, and had a general supervision of religious affairs.
Why religious functions were attached to the office of _rex_ and
_basileus_, among the Romans and Greeks, and to the office of _Teuctli_
among the Aztecs; and why, after the abolition of the office in the two
former cases, the ordinary priesthoods could not perform them, has not
been explained.

Thus stood Roman gentile society from the time of Romulus to the time
of Servius Tullius, through a period of more than two hundred years,
during which the foundations of Roman power were laid. The government,
as before remarked, consisted of three powers, a senate, an assembly
of the people, and a military commander. They had experienced the
necessity for definite written laws to be enacted by themselves,
as a substitute for usages and customs. In the _rex_ they had the
germinal idea of a chief executive magistrate, which necessity pressed
upon them, and which was to advance into a more complete form after
the institution of political society. But they found it a dangerous
office in those times of limited experience in the higher conceptions
of government, because the powers of the _rex_ were, in the main,
undefined, as well as difficult of definition. It is not surprising
that when a serious controversy arose between the people and Tarquinius
Superbus, they deposed the man and abolished the office. As soon as
something like the irresponsible power of a king met them face to
face it was found incompatible with liberty and the latter gained
the victory. They were willing, however, to admit into the system
of government a limited executive, and they created the office in a
dual form in the two consuls. This occurred after the institution of
political society.

No direct steps were taken, prior to the time of Servius Tullius, to
establish a state founded upon territory and upon property; but the
previous measures were a preparation for that event. In addition to the
institutions named, they had created a city magistracy, and a complete
military system, including the institution of the equestrian order.
Under institutions purely gentile Rome had become, in the time of
Servius Tullius, the strongest military power in Italy.

Among the new magistrates created, that of warden of the city (_custos
urbis_) was the most important. This officer, who was chief of the
senate (_princeps senatus_), was, in the first instance, according to
Dionysius, appointed by Romulus.[357] The senate, which had no power to
convene itself, was convened by him. It is also claimed that the _rex_
had power to summon the senate. That it would be apt to convene upon
his request, through the call of its own officer, is probable; but that
he could command its convocation is improbable, from its independence
in functions, from its dignity, and from its representative character.
After the time of the Decemvirs the name of the office was changed
to præfect of the city (_præfectus urbi_), its powers were enlarged,
and it was made elective by the new _comitia centuriata_. Under
the republic, the consuls, and in their absence, the praetor, had
power to convene the senate, and also to hold the _comitia_. At a
later day, the office of praetor (_praetor urbanus_) absorbed the
functions of this ancient office and became its successor. A judicial
magistrate, the Roman praetor was the prototype of the modern judge.
Thus, every essential institution in the government or administration
of the affairs of society may generally be traced to a simple germ,
which springs up in a rude form from human wants, and, when able to
endure the test of time and experience, is developed into a permanent
institution.

A knowledge of the tenure of the office of chief, and of the functions
of the council of chiefs, before the time of Romulus, could they be
ascertained, would reflect much light upon the condition of Roman
gentile society in the time of Romulus. Moreover, the several periods
should be studied separately, because the facts of their social
condition were changing with their advancement in intelligence. The
Italian period prior to Romulus, the period of the seven _reges_, and
the subsequent periods of the republic and of the empire are marked by
great differences in the spirit and character of the government. But
the institutions of the first period entered into the second, and these
again were transmitted into the third, and remained with modifications
in the fourth. The growth, development and fall of these institutions
embody the vital history of the Roman people. It is by tracing these
institutions from the germ through their successive stages of growth,
on the wide scale of the tribes and nations of mankind, that we can
follow the great movements of the human mind in its evolution from
its infancy in savagery to its present high development. Out of the
necessities of mankind for the organization of society came the gens;
out of the gens came the chief, and the tribe with its council of
chiefs; out of the tribe came by segmentation the group of tribes,
afterwards re-united in a confederacy, and finally consolidated by
coalescence into a nation; out of the experience of the council came
the necessity of an assembly of the people with a division of the
powers of the government between them; and finally, out of the military
necessities of the united tribes came the general military commander,
who became in time a third power in the government, but subordinate
to the two superior powers. It was the germ of the office of the
subsequent chief magistrate, the king and the president. The principal
institutions of civilized nations are simply continuations of those
which germinated in savagery, expanded in barbarism, and which are
still subsisting and advancing in civilization.

As the Roman government existed at the death of Romulus, it was social,
and not political; it was personal, and not territorial. The three
tribes were located, it is true, in separate and distinct areas within
the limits of the city; but this was the prevailing mode of settlement
under gentile institutions. Their relations to each other and to the
resulting society, as gentes, curiæ and tribes, were wholly personal,
the government dealing with them as groups of persons, and with the
whole as the Roman people. Localized in this manner within inclosing
ramparts, the idea of a township or city ward would suggest itself when
the necessity for a change in the plan of government was forced upon
them by the growing complexity of affairs. It was a great change that
was soon to be required of them, to be wrought out through experimental
legislation—precisely the same which the Athenians had entered upon
shortly before the time of Servius Tullius. Rome was founded, and its
first victories were won under institutions purely gentile; but the
fruits of these achievements by their very magnitude demonstrated
the inability of the gentes to form the basis of a state. But it
required two centuries of intense activity in the growing commonwealth
to prepare the way for the institution of the second great plan of
government based upon territory and upon property. A withdrawal of
governing powers from the gentes, curiæ and tribes, and their bestowal
upon new constituencies was the sacrifice demanded. Such a change would
become possible only through a conviction that the gentes could not be
made to yield such a form of government as their advanced condition
demanded. It was practically a question of continuance in barbarism,
or progress into civilization. The inauguration of the new system will
form the subject of the next chapter.



CHAPTER XIII.

THE INSTITUTION OF ROMAN POLITICAL SOCIETY.

    THE POPULUS.—THE PLEBEIANS.—THE CLIENTS.—THE
    PATRICIANS.—LIMITS OF THE ORDER.—LEGISLATION OF SERVIUS
    TULLIUS.—INSTITUTION OF PROPERTY CLASSES.—OF THE
    CENTURIES.—UNEQUAL SUFFRAGE.—COMITIA CENTURIATA.—SUPERSEDES
    COMITIA CURIATA.—CLASSES SUPERSEDE THE GENTES.—THE
    CENSUS.—PLEBEIANS MADE CITIZENS.—INSTITUTION OF CITY
    WARDS.—OF COUNTRY TOWNSHIPS.—TRIBES INCREASED TO FOUR.—MADE
    LOCAL INSTEAD OF CONSANGUINE.—CHARACTER OF NEW POLITICAL
    SYSTEM.—DECLINE AND DISAPPEARANCE OF GENTILE ORGANIZATION.—THE
    WORK IT ACCOMPLISHED.


Servius Tullius, the sixth chief of the Roman military democracy, came
to the succession about one hundred and thirty-three years after the
death of Romulus, as near as the date can be ascertained.[358] This
would place his accession about 576 B. C. To this remarkable man the
Romans were chiefly indebted for the establishment of their political
system. It will be sufficient to indicate its main features, together
with some of the reasons which led to its adoption.

From the time of Romulus to that of Servius Tullius the Romans
consisted of two distinct classes, the _populus_ and the _plebeians_.
Both were personally free, and both entered the ranks of the army;
but the former alone were organized in gentes, curiæ and tribes, and
held the powers of the government. The plebeians, on the other hand,
did not belong to any gens, curia or tribe, and consequently were
without the government.[359] They were excluded from office, from the
_comitia curiata_, and from the sacred rites of the gentes. In the
time of Servius they had become nearly if not quite as numerous as the
_populus_. They were in the anomalous position of being subject to
the military service, and of possessing families and property, which
identified them with the interests of Rome, without being in any sense
connected with the government. Under gentile institutions, as we have
seen, there could be no connection with the government except through
a recognized gens, and the plebeians had no gentes. Such a state of
things, affecting so large a portion of the people, was dangerous to
the commonwealth. Admitting of no remedy under gentile institutions,
it must have furnished one of the prominent reasons for attempting the
overthrow of gentile society, and the substitution of political. The
Roman fabric would, in all probability, have fallen in pieces if a
remedy had not been devised. It was commenced in the time of Romulus,
renewed by Numa Pompilius, and completed by Servius Tullius.

The origin both of the plebeians and of the patricians, and their
subsequent relations to each other, have been fruitful themes of
discussion and of disagreement. A few suggestions may be ventured upon
each of these questions.

A person was a plebeian because he was not a member of a gens,
organized with other gentes in a curia and tribe. It is easy to
understand how large numbers of persons would have become detached
from the gentes of their birth in the unsettled times which preceded
and followed the founding of Rome. The adventurers who flocked to the
new city from the surrounding tribes, the captives taken in their wars
and afterwards set free, and the unattached persons mingled with the
gentes transplanted to Rome, would rapidly furnish such a class. It
might also well happen that in filling up the hundred gentes of each
tribe, fragments of gentes, and gentes having less than a prescribed
number of persons, were excluded. These unattached persons, with the
fragments of gentes thus excluded from recognition and organization
in a curia, would soon become, with their children and descendants,
a great and increasing class. Such were the Roman plebeians, who,
as such, were not members of the Roman gentile society. It seems to
be a fair inference from the epithet applied to the senators of the
Luceres, the third Roman tribe admitted, who were styled “Fathers of
the Lesser Gentes,” that the old gentes were reluctant to acknowledge
their entire equality. For a stronger reason they debarred the
plebeians from all participation in the government. When the third
tribe was filled up with the prescribed number of gentes, the last
avenue of admission was closed, after which the number in the plebeian
class would increase with greater rapidity. Niebuhr remarks that the
existence of the plebeian class may be traced to the time of Ancus,
thus implying that they made their first appearance at that time.[360]
He also denies that the clients were a part of the plebeian body;[361]
in both of which positions he differs from Dionysius,[362] and from
Plutarch.[363] The institution of the relation of patron and client is
ascribed by the authors last named to Romulus, and it is recognized by
Suetonius as existing in the time of Romulus.[364] A necessity for such
an institution existed in the presence of a class without a gentile
status, and without religious rites, who would avail themselves of this
relation for the protection of their persons and property, and for the
access it gave them to religious privileges. Members of a gens would
not be without this protection or these privileges; neither would it
befit the dignity or accord with the obligations of a gens to allow
one of its members to accept a patron in another gens. The unattached
class, or, in other words, the plebeians, were the only persons who
would naturally seek patrons and become their clients. The clients
formed no part of the _populus_ for the reasons stated. It seems plain,
notwithstanding the weight of Niebuhr’s authority on Roman questions,
that the clients were a part of the plebeian body.

The next question is one of extreme difficulty, namely: the origin
and extent of the patrician class—whether it originated with the
institution of the Roman Senate, and was limited to the senators, and
to their children and descendants; or included the entire _populus_,
as distinguished from the plebeians. It is claimed by the most eminent
modern authorities that the entire _populus_ were patricians. Niebuhr,
who is certainly the first on Roman questions, adopts this view,[365]
to which Long, Schmitz, and others have given their concurrence.[366]
But the reasons assigned are not conclusive. The existence of the
patrician class, and of the plebeian class as well, may be traced, as
stated, to the time of Romulus.[367] If the _populus_, who were the
entire body of the people organized in gentes, were all patricians
at this early day, the distinction would have been nominal, as the
plebeian class was then unimportant. Moreover, the plain statements
of Cicero and of Livy are not reconcilable with this conclusion.
Dionysius, it is true, speaks of the institution of the patrician class
as occurring before that of the senate, and as composed of a limited
number of persons distinguished for their birth, their virtue, and
their wealth; thus excluding the poor and obscure in birth, although
they belonged to the historical gentes.[368] Admitting a class of
patricians without senatorial connection, there was still a large
class remaining in the several gentes who were not patricians. Cicero
has left a plain statement that the senators and their children were
patricians, and without referring to the existence of any patrician
class beyond their number. When that senate of Romulus, he remarks,
which was constituted of the best men, whom Romulus himself respected
so highly that he wished them to be called fathers, and their children
patricians, attempted,[369] etc. The meaning attached to the word
fathers (_patres_) as here used was a subject of disagreement among the
Romans themselves; but the word _patricii_, for the class is formed
upon _patres_, thus tending to show the necessary connection of the
patricians with the senatorial office. Since each senator at the outset
represented, in all probability, a gens, and the three hundred thus
represented all the recognized gentes, this fact could not of itself
make all the members of the gentes patricians, because the dignity was
limited to the senators, their children, and their posterity. Livy is
equally explicit. They were certainly called fathers, he remarks, on
account of their official dignity, and their posterity (_progenies_)
patricians.[370] Under the _reges_ and also under the republic,
individuals were created patricians by the government; but apart from
the senatorial office, and special creation by the government, the rank
could not be obtained. It is not improbable that a number of persons,
not admitted into the senate when it was instituted, were placed by
public act on the same level with the senators as to the new patrician
rank; but this would include a small number only of the members of
the three hundred gentes, all of whom were embraced in the _Populus
Romanus_.

It is not improbable that the chiefs of the gentes were called fathers
before the time of Romulus, to indicate the paternal character of the
office; and that the office may have conferred a species of recognized
rank upon their posterity. But we have no direct evidence of the fact.
Assuming it to have been the case, and further, that the senate at
its institution did not include all the principal chiefs, and further
still, that when vacancies in the senate were subsequently filled, the
selection was made on account of merit and not on account of gens,
a foundation for a patrician class might have previously existed
independently of the senate. These assumptions might be used to explain
the peculiar language of Cicero, namely  that Romulus desired that the
senators might be called Fathers, possibly because this was already
the honored title of the chiefs of the gentes. In this way a limited
foundation for a patrician class may be found independent of the
senate; but it would not be broad enough to include all the recognized
gentes. It was in connection with the senators that the suggestion was
made that their children and descendants should be called patricians.
The same statement is repeated by Paterculus.[371]

It follows that there could be no patrician gens and no plebeian gens,
although particular families in one gens might be patricians, and in
another plebeians. There is some confusion also upon this point. All
the adult male members of the Fabian gens, to the number of three
hundred and six, were patricians.[372] It must be explained by the
supposition that all the families in this gens could trace their
descent from senators, or to some public act by which their ancestors
were raised to the patriciate. There were of course patrician families
in many gentes, and at a later day patrician and plebeian families
in the same gens. Thus the Claudii and Marcelli, before referred to
(_supra_ p. 287), were two families of the Claudian gens, but the
Claudii alone were patricians. It will be borne in mind, that prior
to the time of Servius Tullius the Romans were divided into two
classes, the _populus_ and the _plebeians_; but that after his time,
and particularly after the Licinian legislation (367 B. C.) by which
all the dignities of the state were opened to every citizen, the Roman
people, of the degree of freemen, fell into two political classes,
which may be distinguished as the aristocracy and the commonalty.
The former class consisted of the senators, and those descended from
senators, together with those who had held either of the three curule
offices, (consul, praetor, and curule ædile) and their descendants. The
commonalty were now Roman citizens. The gentile organization had fallen
into decadence, and the old division could no longer be maintained.
Persons, who in the first period as belonging to the _populus_, could
not be classed with the plebeians, would in the subsequent period
belong to the aristocracy without being patricians. The Claudii could
trace their descent from Appius Claudius who was made a senator in
the time of Romulus; but the Marcelli could not trace their descent
from him, nor from any other senator, although, as Niebuhr remarks,
“equal to the Appii in the splendor of the honors they attained to,
and incomparably more useful to the commonwealth.”[373] This is
a sufficient explanation of the position of the Marcelli without
resorting to the fanciful hypothesis of Niebuhr, that the Marcelli had
lost patrician rank through a marriage of disparagement.[374]

The patrician class were necessarily numerous, because the senators,
rarely less than three hundred, were chosen as often as vacancies
occurred, thus constantly including new families; and because it
conferred patrician rank on their posterity. Others were from time to
time made patricians by act of the state.[375] This distinction, at
first probably of little value, became of great importance with their
increase in wealth, numbers and power; and it changed the complexion
of Roman society. The full effect of introducing a privileged class in
Roman gentile society was not probably appreciated at the time; and
it is questionable whether this institution did not exercise a more
injurious than beneficial influence upon the subsequent career of the
Roman people.

When the gentes had ceased to be organizations for governmental
purposes under the new political system, the _populus_ no longer
remained as distinguished from the plebeians; but the shadow of the
old organization and of the old distinction remained far into the
republic.[376] The plebeians under the new system were Roman citizens,
but they were now the commonalty; the question of the connection or
non-connection with a gens not entering into the distinction.

From Romulus to Servius Tullius the Roman organization, as before
stated, was simply a gentile society, without relation to territory
or to property. All we find is a series of aggregates of persons, in
gentes, curiæ and tribes, by means of which the people were dealt with
by the government as groups of persons forming these several organic
unities. Their condition was precisely like that of the Athenians prior
to the time of Solon. But they had instituted a senate in the place of
the old council of chiefs, a _comitia curiata_ in the place of the old
assembly of the people, and had chosen a military commander, with the
additional functions of a priest and judge. With a government of three
powers, co-ordinated with reference to their principal necessities, and
with a coalescence of the three tribes, composed of an equal number of
gentes and curiæ, into one people, they possessed a higher and more
complete governmental organization than the Latin tribes had before
attained. A numerous class had gradually developed, however, who were
without the pale of the government, and without religious privileges,
excepting that portion who had passed into the relation of clients. If
not a dangerous class, their exclusion from citizenship, and from all
participation in the government, was detrimental to the commonwealth. A
municipality was growing up upon a scale of magnitude unknown in their
previous experience, requiring a special organization to conduct its
local affairs. A necessity for a change in the plan of government must
have forced itself more and more upon the attention of thoughtful men.
The increase of numbers and of wealth, and the difficulty of managing
their affairs, now complex from weight of numbers and diversity of
interests, began to reveal the fact, it must be supposed, that they
could not hold together under gentile institutions. A conclusion of
this kind is required to explain the several expedients which were
tried.

Numa, the successor of Romulus, made the first significant movement,
because it reveals the existence of an impression, that a great power
could not rest upon gentes as the basis of a system. He attempted
to traverse the gentes, as Theseus did, by dividing the people into
classes, some eight in number, according to their arts and trades.[377]
Plutarch, who is the chief authority for this statement, speaks of this
division of the people according to their vocations as the most admired
of Numa’s institutions; and remarks further, that it was designed to
take away the distinction between Latin and Sabine, both name and
thing, by mixing them together in a new distribution. But as he did not
invest the classes with the powers exercised by the gentes, the measure
failed, like the similar attempt of Theseus, and for the same reason.
Each guild, as we are assured by Plutarch, had its separate hall, court
and religious observances. These records, though traditionary, of
the same experiment in Attica and at Rome, made for the same object,
for similar reasons, and by the same instrumentalities, render the
inference reasonable that the experiment as stated was actually tried
in each case.

Servius Tullius instituted the new system, and placed it upon a
foundation where it remained to the close of the republic, although
changes were afterwards made in the nature of improvements. His period
(about 576-533 B. C.) follows closely that of Solon (596 B. C.), and
precedes that of Cleisthenes (509 B. C.). The legislation ascribed
to him, and which was obviously modeled upon that of Solon, may be
accepted as having occurred as early as the time named, because the
system was in practical operation when the republic was established
509 B. C., within the historical period. Moreover, the new political
system may as properly be ascribed to him as great measures have been
attributed to other men, although in both cases the legislator does
little more than formulate what experience had already suggested and
pressed upon his attention. The three principal changes which set aside
the gentes and inaugurated political society based upon territory
and upon property, were: first, the substitution of classes, formed
upon the measure of individual wealth, in the place of the gentes;
second, the institution of the _comitia centuriata_, as the new popular
assembly, in the place of the _comitia curiata_, the assembly of the
gentes, with a transfer of the substantial powers of the latter to the
former; and third, the creation of four city wards, in the nature of
townships, circumscribed by metes and bounds and named as territorial
areas, in which the residents of each ward were required to enroll
their names and register their property.

Imitating Solon, with whose plan of government he was doubtless
familiar, Servius divided the people into five classes, according to
the value of their property, the effect of which was to concentrate
in one class the wealthiest men of the several gentes.[378] Each
class was then subdivided into centuries, the number in each being
established arbitrarily without regard to the actual number of
persons it contained, and with one vote to each century in the
_comitia_. The amount of political power to be held by each class
was thus determined by the number of centuries given to each. Thus,
the first class consisted of eighty centuries, with eighty votes
in the _comitia centuriata_; the second class of twenty centuries,
to which two centuries of artisans were attached, with twenty-two
votes; the third class of twenty centuries, with twenty votes; the
fourth class of twenty, to which two centuries of horn-blowers and
trumpeters were attached, with twenty-two votes; and the fifth class
of thirty centuries, with thirty votes. In addition to these, the
equites consisted of eighteen centuries, with eighteen votes. To these
classes Dionysius adds a sixth class, consisting of one century, with
one vote. It was composed of those who had no property, or less than
the amount required for admission into the fifth class. They neither
paid taxes, nor served in war.[379] The whole number of centuries in
the six classes with the equites added, made a total of one hundred
and ninety-three, according to Dionysius.[380] Livy, agreeing with
the former as to the number of regular centuries in the five classes,
differs from him by excluding the sixth class, the persons being formed
into one century with one vote, and included in or attached to the
fifth class. He also makes three centuries of horn-blowers instead of
two, and the whole number of centuries one more than Dionysius.[381]
Cicero remarks that ninety-six centuries were a minority, which would
be equally true under either statement.[382] The centuries of each
class were divided into seniors and juniors, of which the senior
centuries were composed of such persons as were above the age of
fifty-five years, and were charged with the duty, as soldiers, of
defending the city; while the junior centuries consisted of those
persons who were below this age and above seventeen, and were charged
with external military enterprises.[383] The armature of each class was
prescribed and made different for each.[384]

It will be noticed that the control of the government, so far as the
assembly of the people could influence its action, was placed in
the hands of the first class, and the equites. They held together
ninety-eight votes, a majority of the whole. Each century agreed
upon its vote separately when assembled in the _comitia centuriata_,
precisely as each curia had been accustomed to do in the _comitia
curiata_. In taking a vote upon any public question, the equites were
called first, and then the first class.[385] If they agreed in their
votes it decided the question, and the remaining centuries were not
called upon to vote; but if they disagreed, the second class was
called, and so on to the last, unless a majority sooner appeared.

The powers formerly exercised by the _comitia curiata_, now transferred
to the _comitia centuriata_, were enlarged in some slight particulars
in the subsequent period. It elected all officers and magistrates on
the nomination of the senate; it enacted or rejected laws proposed
by the senate, no measure becoming a law without its sanction; it
repealed existing laws on the proposition of the same body, if they
chose to do so; and it declared war on the same recommendation. But
the senate concluded peace without consulting the assembly. An appeal
in all cases involving life could be taken to this assembly as the
highest judicial tribunal of the state. These powers were substantial,
but limited—control over the finances being excluded. A majority
of the votes, however, were lodged with the first class, including
the equites, which embraced the body of the patricians, as must be
supposed, and the wealthiest citizens. Property and not numbers
controlled the government. They were able, however, to create a body
of laws in the course of time which afforded equal protection to all,
and thus tended to redeem the worst effects of the inequalities of the
system.

The meetings of the _comitia_ were held in the Campus Martius annually
for the election of magistrates and officers, and at other times when
the public necessities required. The people assembled by centuries, and
by classes under their officers, organized as an army (_exercitus_);
for the centuries and classes were designed to subserve all the
purposes of a military as well as a civil organization. At the first
muster under Servius Tullius, eighty thousand citizen soldiers appeared
in the Campus Martius under arms, each man in his proper century, each
century in its class, and each class by itself.[386] Every member of a
century was now a citizen of Rome, which was the most important fruit
of the new political system. In the time of the republic the consuls,
and in their absence, the praetor, had power to convene the _comitia_,
which was presided over by the person who caused it to assemble.

Such a government appears to us, in the light of our more advanced
experience, both rude and clumsy; but it was a sensible improvement
upon the previous gentile government, defective and illiberal as it
appears. Under it, Rome became mistress of the world. The element
of property, now rising into commanding importance, determined its
character. It had brought aristocracy and privilege into prominence,
which seized the opportunity to withdraw the control of the government
in a great measure from the hands of the people, and bestow it upon the
men of property. It was a movement in the opposite direction from that
to which the democratic principles inherited from the gentes naturally
tended. Against the new elements of aristocracy and privilege now
incorporated in their governmental institutions, the Roman plebeians
contended throughout the period of the republic, and at times with some
measure of success. But patrician rank and property possessed by the
higher classes, were too powerful for the wiser and grander doctrines
of equal rights and equal privileges represented by the plebeians.
It was even then far too heavy a tax upon Roman society to carry a
privileged class.

Cicero, patriot and noble Roman as he was, approved and commended
this gradation of the people into classes, with the bestowment of a
controlling influence in the government upon the minority of citizens.
Servius Tullius, he remarks, “having created a large number of equites
from the common mass of the people, divided the remainder into five
classes, distinguishing between the seniors and juniors, which he
so constituted as to place the suffrages, not in the hands of the
multitude, but of the men of property; taking care to make it a rule
of ours, as it ought to be in every government, that the greatest
number should not have the greatest weight.”[387] In the light of
the experience of the intervening two thousand years, it may well be
observed that the inequality of privileges, and the denial of the right
of self-government here commended, created and developed that mass of
ignorance and corruption which ultimately destroyed both government
and people. The human race is gradually learning the simple lesson,
that the people as a whole are wiser for the public good and the
public prosperity, than any privileged class of men, however refined
and cultivated, have ever been, or, by any possibility, can ever
become. Governments over societies the most advanced are still in a
transitional stage; and they are necessarily and logically moving, as
President Grant, not without reason, intimated in his last inaugural
address, in the direction of democracy; that form of self-government
which represents and expresses the average intelligence and virtue of a
free and educated people.

The property classes subserved the useful purpose of breaking up the
gentes, as the basis of a governmental system, by transferring their
powers to a different body. It was evidently the principal object of
the Servian legislation to obtain a deliverance from the gentes, which
were close corporations, and to give the new government a basis wide
enough to include all the inhabitants of Rome, with the exception of
the slaves. After the classes had accomplished this work, it might have
been expected that they would have died out as they did at Athens;
and that city wards and country townships, with their inhabitants
organized as bodies politic, would have become the basis of the new
political system, as they rightfully and logically should. But the
municipal organization of Rome prevented this consummation. It gained
at the outset, and maintained to the end the central position in the
government, to which all areas without were made subordinate. It
presents the anomaly of a great central municipal government expanded,
in effect, first over Italy, and finally over the conquered provinces
of three continents. The five classes, with some modifications of the
manner of voting, remained to the end of the republic. The creation of
a new assembly of the people to take the place of the old, discloses
the radical character of the Servian constitution. These classes would
never have acquired vitality without a newly constituted assembly,
investing them with political powers. With the increase of wealth and
population the duties and responsibilities of this assembly were much
increased. It was evidently the intention of Servius Tullius that it
should extinguish the _comitia curiata_, and with it the power of the
gentes.

This legislator is said to have instituted the _comitia tributa_,
a separate assembly of each local tribe or ward, whose chief
duties related to the assessment and collection of taxes, and to
furnishing contingents of troops. At a later day this assembly
elected the tribunes of the people. The ward was the natural unit of
their political system, and the centre where local self-government
should have been established had the Roman people wished to create
a democratic state. But the senate and the property classes had
forestalled them from that career.

One of the first acts ascribed to Servius was the institution of the
census. Livy pronounces the census a most salutary measure for an
empire about to become so great, according to which the duties of
peace and of war were to be performed, not individually as before,
but according to the measure of personal wealth.[388] Each person
was required to enroll himself in the ward of his residence, with a
statement of the amount of his property. It was done in the presence
of the censor; and the lists when completed furnished the basis upon
which the classes were formed.[389] This was accompanied by a very
remarkable act for the period, the creation of four city wards,
circumscribed by boundaries, and distinguished by appropriate names.
In point of time it was earlier than the institution of the Attic deme
by Cleisthenes; but the two were quite different in their relations
to the government. The Attic deme, as has been shown, was organized
as a body politic with a similar registry of citizens and of their
property, and having besides a complete local self-government, with
an elective magistracy, judiciary and priesthood. On the other hand,
the Roman ward was a geographical area, with a registry of citizens
and of their property, with a local organization, a tribune and other
elective offices, and with an assembly. For a limited number of special
objects the inhabitants of the wards were dealt with by the government
through their territorial relations. But the government of the ward
did not possess the solid attributes of that of the Attic deme. It was
a nearer copy of the previous Athenian naucrary, which not unlikely
furnished the model, as the Solonian classes did of the Servian.
Dionysius remarks, that after Servius Tullius had inclosed the seven
hills with one wall he divided the city into four parts, and gave
the names of the hills to the re-divisions: to the first, Palatina,
to the second, Suburra, to the third, Collina, and to the fourth,
Esquilina; and made the city consist of four parts, which before
consisted of three; and he ordered the people who dwelt in each of the
four regions, like villagers, not to take any other dwelling, nor to
pay taxes elsewhere, nor give in their names as soldiers elsewhere,
nor pay their assessments for military purposes and other needs, which
each must furnish for the common welfare; for these things were no
longer to be done according to the three consanguine tribes (φυλὰς
τὰς γενικὰς), but according to the four local tribes (φυλὰς τὰς
τοπικὰς), which last had been arranged by himself; and he appointed
commanders over each tribe, as phylarchs or comarchs, whom he directed
to note what house each inhabited.[390] Mommsen observes that “each of
these four levy-districts had to furnish the fourth part not only of
the force as a whole, but of each of its military subdivisions, so that
each legion and each century numbered an equal proportion of conscripts
from each region; evidently for the purpose of merging all distinctions
of a gentile and local nature in one common levy of the community, and
especially of binding, through the powerful leveling influence of the
military spirit, the _meteoci_ and the burgesses into one people.”[391]

In like manner, the surrounding country under the government of Rome
was organized in townships (_tribus rusticae_), the number of which
is stated at twenty-six by some writers, and at thirty-one by others;
making, with the four city wards, a total of thirty in one case, and
of thirty-five in the other.[392] The total number was never increased
beyond thirty-five. These townships did not become integral in the
sense of participating in the administration of the government.

As finally established under the Servian constitution, the government
was cast in the form in which it remained during the existence of
the republic; the consuls taking the place of the previous military
commanders. It was not based upon territory in the exclusive sense
of the Athenian government, or in the modern sense; ascending from
the township or ward, the unit of organization, to the county or
arrondissement, and from the latter to the state, each organized and
invested with governmental functions as constituents of a whole. The
central government overshadowed and atrophied the parts. It rested
more upon property than upon territory, this being made the commanding
element, as is shown by the lodgment of the controlling power of the
government in the highest property classes. It had, nevertheless, a
territorial basis as well, since it recognized and used territorial
subdivisions for citizenship, and for financial and military objects,
in which the citizen was dealt with through his territorial relations.

The Romans were now carried fairly out of gentile society into and
under the second great plan of government, founded upon territory
and upon property. They had left gentilism and barbarism behind
them, and entered upon a new career of civilization. Henceforth the
creation and protection of property became the primary objects of the
government, with a superadded career of conquest for domination over
distant tribes and nations. This great change of institutions, creating
political society as distinguished from gentile society, was simply
the introduction of the new elements of territory and property, making
the latter a power in the government, which before had been simply an
influence. Had the wards and rustic townships been organized with full
powers of local self-government, and the senate been made elective
by these local constituencies without distinction of classes, the
resulting government would have been a democracy, like the Athenian;
for these local governments would have moulded the state into their
own likeness. The senate, with the hereditary rank it conferred, and
the property basis qualifying the voting power in the assembly of
the people, turned the scale against democratical institutions, and
produced a mixed government, partly aristocratic and partly democratic;
eminently calculated to engender perpetual animosity between the two
classes of citizens thus deliberately and unnecessarily created by
affirmative legislation. It is plain, I think, that the people were
circumvented by the Servian constitution, and had a government put upon
them which the majority would have rejected had they fully comprehended
its probable results. The evidence is conclusive of the antecedent
democratical principles of the gentes, which, however exclusive as
against all persons not in their communion, were carried out fully
among themselves. The evidence of this free spirit and of their free
institutions is so decisive that the proposition elsewhere stated, that
gentilism is incompatible with monarchy, seems to be incontrovertible.

As a whole, the Roman government was anomalous. The overshadowing
municipality of Rome, made the centre of the state in its plan of
government, was one of the producing causes of its novel character.
The primary organization of the people into an army with the military
spirit it fostered created the cohesive force which held the republic
together, and afterwards the empire. With a selective senate holding
office for life, and possessing substantial powers; with a personal
rank passing to their children and descendants; with an elective
magistracy graded to the needs of a central metropolis; with an
assembly of the people organized into property classes, possessing
an unequal suffrage, but holding both an affirmative and a negative
upon all legislation; and with an elaborate military organization,
no other government strictly analogous has appeared among men. It
was artificial, illogical, approaching a monstrosity; but capable of
wonderful achievements, because of its military spirit, and because
the Romans were endowed with remarkable powers for organizing and
managing affairs. The patchwork in its composition was the product
of the superior craft of the wealthy classes who intended to seize
the substance of power while they pretended to respect the rights and
interests of all.

When the new political system became established, the old one did not
immediately disappear. The functions of the senate and of the military
commander remained as before; but the property classes took the place
of the gentes, and the assembly of the classes took the place of the
assembly of the gentes. Radical as the changes were, they were limited,
in the main, to these particulars, and came in without friction or
violence. The old assembly (_comitia curiata_) was allowed to retain a
portion of its powers, which kept alive for a long period of time the
organizations of the gentes, curiæ and consanguine tribes. It still
conferred the _imperium_ upon all the higher magistrates after their
election was completed, though in time it became a matter of form
merely; it inaugurated certain priests, and regulated the religious
observances of the curiæ. This state of things continued down to the
time of the first Punic war, after which the _comitia curiata_ lost its
importance and soon fell into oblivion. Both the assembly and the curiæ
were superseded rather than abolished, and died out from inanition;
but the gentes remained far into the empire, not as an organization,
for that also died out in time, but as a pedigree and a lineage. Thus
the transition from gentile into political society was gradually but
effectually accomplished, and the second great plan of human government
was substituted by the Romans in the place of the first which had
prevailed from time immemorial.

After an immensely protracted duration, running back of the separate
existence of the Aryan family, and received by the Latin tribes from
their remote ancestors, the gentile organization finally surrendered
its existence, among the Romans, to the demands of civilization.
It had held exclusive possession of society through these several
ethnical periods, and until it had won by experience all the elements
of civilization, which it then proved unable to manage. Mankind
owe a debt of gratitude to their savage ancestors for devising an
institution able to carry the advancing portion of the human race
out of savagery into barbarism, and through the successive stages
of the latter into civilization. It also accumulated by experience
the intelligence and knowledge necessary to devise political society
while the institution yet remained. It holds a position on the great
chart of human progress second to none in its influence, in its
achievements and in its history. As a plan of government, the gentile
organization was unequal to the wants of civilized man; but it is
something to be said in its remembrance that it developed from the
germ the principal governmental institutions of modern civilized
states. Among others, as before stated, out of the ancient council
of chiefs came the modern senate; out of the ancient assembly of the
people came the modern representative assembly, the two together
constituting the modern legislature; out of the ancient general
military commander came the modern chief magistrate, whether a feudal
or constitutional king, an emperor or a president, the latter being
the natural and logical result; and out of the ancient _custos urbis_,
by a circuitous derivation, came the Roman praetor and the modern
judge. Equal rights and privileges, personal freedom and the cardinal
principles of democracy were also inherited from the gentes. When
property had become created in masses, and its influence and power
began to be felt in society, slavery came in; an institution violative
of all these principles, but sustained by the selfish and delusive
consideration that the person made a slave was a stranger in blood and
a captive enemy. With property also came in gradually the principle
of aristocracy, striving for the creation of privileged classes. The
element of property, which has controlled society to a great extent
during the comparatively short period of civilization, has given
mankind despotism, imperialism, monarchy, privileged classes, and
finally representative democracy. It has also made the career of the
civilized nations essentially a property-making career. But when the
intelligence of mankind rises to the height of the great question of
the abstract rights of property,—including the relations of property to
the state, as well as the rights of persons to property,—a modification
of the present order of things may be expected. The nature of the
coming changes it may be impossible to conceive; but it seems probable
that democracy, once universal in a rudimentary form and repressed
in many civilized states, is destined to become again universal and
supreme.

An American, educated in the principles of democracy, and profoundly
impressed with the dignity and grandeur of those great conceptions
which recognize the liberty, equality and fraternity of mankind, may
give free expression to a preference for self-government and free
institutions. At the same time the equal rights of every other person
must be recognized to accept and approve any form of government,
whether imperial or monarchical, that satisfies his preferences.



CHAPTER XIV.

CHANGE OF DESCENT FROM THE FEMALE TO THE MALE LINE.

    HOW THE CHANGE MIGHT HAVE BEEN MADE.—INHERITANCE OF
    PROPERTY THE MOTIVE.—DESCENT IN THE FEMALE LINE AMONG THE
    LYCIANS.—THE CRETANS.—THE ETRUSCANS.—PROBABLY AMONG THE
    ATHENIANS IN THE TIME OF CECROPS.—THE HUNDRED FAMILIES OF
    THE LOCRIANS.—EVIDENCE FROM MARRIAGES.—TURANIAN SYSTEM OF
    CONSANGUINITY AMONG GRECIAN TRIBES.—LEGEND OF THE DANAIDÆ.


An important question remains to be considered, namely: whether any
evidence exists that descent was anciently in the female line in the
Grecian and Latin gentes. Theoretically, this must have been the fact
at some anterior period among their remote ancestors; but we are not
compelled to rest the question upon theory alone. Since a change to
the male line involved a nearly total alteration of the membership in
a gens, a method by which it might have been accomplished should be
pointed out. More than this, it should be shown, if possible, that an
adequate motive requiring the change was certain to arise, with the
progress of society out of the condition in which this form of descent
originated. And lastly, the existing evidence of ancient descent in the
female line among them should be presented.

A gens in the archaic period, as we have seen, consisted of a supposed
female ancestor and her children, together with the children of her
daughters, and of her female descendants through females in perpetuity.
The children of her sons, and of her male descendants, through males,
were excluded. On the other hand, with descent in the male line, a
gens consisted of a supposed male ancestor and his children, together
with the children of his sons and of his male descendants through
males in perpetuity. The children of his daughters, and of his female
descendants, through females, were excluded. Those excluded in the
first case would be members of the gens in the second case, and _vice
versâ_. The question then arises, how could descent be changed from the
female line to the male without the destruction of the gens?

The method was simple and natural, provided the motive to make the
change was general, urgent and commanding. When done at a given time,
and by preconcerted determination, it was only necessary to agree that
all the present members of the gens should remain members, but that in
future all children, whose fathers belonged to the gens, should alone
remain in it and bear the gentile name, while the children of its
female members should be excluded. This would not break or change the
kinship or relations of the existing gentiles; but thereafter it would
retain in the gens the children it before excluded, and exclude those
it before retained. Although it may seem a hard problem to solve, the
pressure of an adequate motive would render it easy, and the lapse of
a few generations would make it complete. As a practical question, it
has been changed from the female line to the male among the American
aborigines in a number of instances. Thus, among the Ojibwas descent is
now in the male line, while among their congeners, the Delawares and
Mohegans, it is still in the female line. Originally, without a doubt,
descent was in the female line in the entire Algonkin stock.

Since descent in the female line is archaic, and more in accordance
with the early condition of ancient society than descent in the male
line, there is a presumption in favor of its ancient prevalence in
the Grecian and Latin gentes. Moreover, when the archaic form of any
transmitted organization has been discovered and verified, it is
impossible to conceive of its origination in the later more advanced
form.

Assuming a change of descent among them from the female line to
the male, it must have occurred very remotely from the historical
period. Their history in the Middle Status of barbarism is entirely
lost, except it has been in some measure preserved in their arts,
institutions and inventions, and in improvements in language. The
Upper Status has the superadded light of tradition and of the Homeric
poems to acquaint us with its experience and the measure of progress
then made. But judging from the condition in which their traditions
place them, it seems probable that descent in the female line had not
entirely disappeared, at least among the Pelasgian and Grecian tribes,
when they entered the Upper Status of barbarism.

When descent was in the female line in the Grecian and Latin gentes,
the gens possessed the following among other characteristics: 1.
Marriage in the gens was prohibited; thus placing children in a
different gens from that of their reputed father. 2. Property and the
office of chief were hereditary in the gens; thus excluding children
from inheriting the property or succeeding to the office of their
reputed father. This state of things would continue until a motive
arose sufficiently general and commanding to establish the injustice of
this exclusion in the face of their changed condition.

The natural remedy was a change of descent from the female line to
the male. All that was needed to effect the change was an adequate
motive. After domestic animals began to be reared in flocks and
herds, becoming thereby a source of subsistence as well as objects
of individual property, and after tillage had led to the ownership
of houses and lands in severalty, an antagonism would be certain to
arise against the prevailing form of gentile inheritance, because
it excluded the owner’s children, whose paternity was becoming more
assured, and gave his property to his gentile kindred. A contest for
a new rule of inheritance, shared in by fathers and their children,
would furnish a motive sufficiently powerful to effect the change. With
property accumulating in masses and assuming permanent forms, and with
an increased proportion of it held by individual ownership, descent in
the female line was certain of overthrow, and the substitution of the
male line equally assured. Such a change would leave the inheritance
in the gens as before, but it would place children in the gens of
their father, and at the head of the agnatic kindred. For a time, in
all probability, they would share in the distribution of the estate
with the remaining agnates; but an extension of the principle by which
the agnates cut off the remaining gentiles, would in time result in
the exclusion of the agnates beyond the children and an exclusive
inheritance in the children. Farther than this, the son would now be
brought in the line of succession to the office of his father.

Such had the law of inheritance become in the Athenian gens in the
time of Solon or shortly after; when the property passed to the sons
equally, subject to the obligation of maintaining the daughters, and of
apportioning them in marriage; and in default of sons, to the daughters
equally. If there were no children, then the inheritance passed to the
agnatic kindred, and in default of the latter, to the gentiles. The
Roman law of the Twelve Tables was substantially the same.

It seems probable further, that when descent was changed to the male
line, or still earlier, animal names for the gentes were laid aside
and personal names substituted in their place. The individuality
of persons would assert itself more and more with the progress of
society, and with the increase and individual ownership of property,
leading to the naming of the gens after some ancestral hero. Although
new gentes were being formed from time to time by the process of
segmentation, and others were dying out, the lineage of a gens reached
back through hundreds not to say thousands of years. After the supposed
substitution, the eponymous ancestor would have been a shifting person,
at long intervals of time, some later person distinguished in the
history of the gens being put in his place, when the knowledge of the
former person became obscured, and faded from view in the misty past.
That the more celebrated Grecian gentes made the change of names,
and made it gracefully, is shown by the fact, that they retained the
name of the mother of their gentile father, and ascribed his birth to
her embracement by some particular god. Thus Eumolpus, the eponymous
ancestor of the Attic Eumolpidæ, was the reputed son of Neptune and
Chione; but even the Grecian gens was older than the conception of
Neptune.

Recurring now to the main question, the absence of direct proof of
ancient descent in the female line in the Grecian and Latin gentes
would not silence the presumption in its favor; but it so happens that
this form of descent remained in some tribes nearly related to the
Greeks with traces of it in a number of Grecian tribes.

The inquisitive and observing Herodotus found one nation, the Lycians,
Pelasgian in lineage, but Grecian in affiliation, among whom in his
time (440 B. C.), descent was in the female line. After remarking that
the Lycians were sprung from Crete, and stating some particulars of
their migration to Lycia under Sarpedon, he proceeds as follows: “Their
customs are partly Cretan and partly Carian. They have, however, one
singular custom in which they differ from every other nation in the
world. Ask a Lycian who he is, and he answers by giving his own name,
that of his mother, and so on in the female line. Moreover, if a free
woman marry a man who is a slave, their children are free citizens;
but if a free man marry a foreign woman, or cohabit with a concubine,
even though he be the first person in the state, the children forfeit
all the rights of citizenship.”[393] It follows necessarily from this
circumstantial statement that the Lycians were organized in gentes,
with a prohibition against intermarriage in the gens, and that the
children belonged to the gens of their mother. It presents a clear
exemplification of a gens in the archaic form, with confirmatory tests
of the consequences of a marriage of a Lycian man with a foreign woman,
and of a Lycian woman with a slave.[394] The aborigines of Crete
were Pelasgian, Hellenic and Semitic tribes, living locally apart.
Minos, the brother of Sarpedon, is usually regarded as the head of the
Pelasgians in Crete; but the Lycians were already Hellenized in the
time of Herodotus and quite conspicuous among the Asiatic Greeks for
their advancement. The insulation of their ancestors upon the island of
Crete, prior to their migration in the legendary period to Lycia, may
afford an explanation of their retention of descent in the female line
to this late period.

Among the Etruscans also the same rule of descent prevailed. “It is
singular enough,” observes Cramer, “that two customs peculiar to the
Etruscans, as we discover from their monuments, should have been
noticed by Herodotus as characteristic of the Lycians and Caunians
of Asia Minor. The first is, that the Etruscans invariably describe
their parentage and family with reference to the mother, and not the
father. The other, that they admitted their wives to their feasts and
banquets.”[395]

Curtius comments on Lycian, Etruscan and Cretan descent in the female
line in the following language: “It would be an error to understand
the usage in question as an homage to the female sex. It is rather
rooted in primitive conditions of society, in which monogamy was not
yet established with sufficient certainty to enable descent upon the
father’s side to be affirmed with assurance. Accordingly the usage
extends far beyond the territory commanded by the Lycian nationality.
It occurs, even to this day, in India; it may be demonstrated to have
existed among the ancient Egyptians; it is mentioned by Sanchoniathon
(p. 16, Orell), where the reasons for its existence are stated with
great freedom; and beyond the confines of the East it appears among the
Etruscans, among the Cretans, who were so closely connected with the
Lycians, and who called their father-land mother-land; and among the
Athenians, consult Bachofen, etc. Accordingly, if Herodotus regards the
usage in question as thoroughly peculiar to the Lycians, it must have
maintained itself longest among them of all the nations related to the
Greeks, as is also proved by the Lycian inscriptions. Hence we must in
general regard the employment of the maternal name for a designation
of descent as the remains of an imperfect condition of social life and
family law, which, as life becomes more regulated, was relinquished in
favor of usages, afterwards universal in Greece, of naming children
after the father. This diversity of usages, which is extremely
important for the history of ancient civilization, has been recently
discussed by Bachofen in his address above named.”[396]

In a work of vast research, Bachofen has collected and discussed
the evidence of female authority (mother-right) and of female rule
(gyneocracy) among the Lycians, Cretans, Athenians, Lemnians,
Ægyptians, Orchomenians, Locrians, Lesbians, Mantineans, and among
eastern Asiatic nations.[397] The condition of ancient society, thus
brought under review, requires for its full explanation the existence
of the gens in its archaic form as the source of the phenomena. This
would bring the mother and her children into the same gens, and in the
composition of the communal household, on the basis of gens, would
give the gens of the mothers the ascendency in the household. The
family, which had probably attained the syndyasmian form, was still
environed with the remains of that conjugal system which belonged to a
still earlier condition. Such a family, consisting of a married pair
with their children, would naturally have sought shelter with kindred
families in a communal household, in which the several mothers and
their children would be of the same gens, and the reputed fathers
of these children would be of other gentes. Common lands and joint
tillage would lead to joint-tenement houses and communism in living;
so that gyneocracy seems to require for its creation, descent in the
female line. Women thus entrenched in large households, supplied from
common stores, in which their own gens so largely predominated in
numbers, would produce the phenomena of mother right and gyneocracy,
which Bachofen has detected and traced with the aid of fragments of
history and of tradition. Elsewhere I have referred to the unfavorable
influence upon the position of women which was produced by a change
of descent from the female line to the male, and by the rise of the
monogamian family, which displaced the joint-tenement house, and in
the midst of a society purely gentile, placed the wife and mother in a
single house and separated her from her gentile kindred.[398]

Monogamy was not probably established among the Grecian tribes until
after they had attained the Upper Status of barbarism; and we seem to
arrive at chaos in the marriage relation within this period, especially
in the Athenian tribes. Concerning the latter, Bachofen remarks: “For
before the time of Cecrops the children, as we have seen, had only a
mother, no father; they were of one line. Bound to no man exclusively,
the woman brought only spurious children into the world. Cecrops first
made an end of this condition of things; led the lawless union of the
sexes back to the exclusiveness of marriage; gave to the children a
father and mother, and thus from being of one line (_unilateres_) made
them of two lines (_bilateres_).”[399] What is here described as the
lawless union of the sexes must be received with modifications. We
should expect at that comparatively late day to find the syndyasmian
family, but attended by the remains of an anterior conjugal system
which sprang from marriages in the group. The punaluan family, which
the statement fairly implies, must have disappeared before they
reached the ethnical period named. This subject will be considered in
subsequent chapters in connection with the growth of the family.

There is an interesting reference by Polybius to the hundred families
of the Locrians of Italy. “The Locrians themselves,” he remarks,
“have assured me that their own traditions are more conformable to the
account of Aristotle than to that of Timæus. Of this they mention the
following proofs. The first is, that all nobility of ancestry among
them is derived from women, and not from men. That those, for example,
alone are noble, who derive their origin from the hundred families.
That these families were noble among the Locrians before they migrated;
and were the same, indeed, from which a hundred virgins were taken by
lot, as the oracle had commanded, and were sent to Troy.”[400] It is
at least a reasonable supposition that the rank here referred to was
connected with the office of chief of the gens, which ennobled the
particular family within the gens, upon one of the members of which it
was conferred. If this supposition is tenable, it implies descent in
the female line both as to persons and to office. The office of chief
was hereditary in the gens, and elective among its male members in
archaic times; and with descent in the female line, it would pass from
brother to brother, and from uncle to nephew. But the office in each
case passed through females, the eligibility of the person depending
upon the gens of his mother, who gave him his connection with the gens,
and with the deceased chief whose place was to be filled. Wherever
office or rank runs through females, it requires descent in the female
line for its explanation.

Evidence of ancient descent in the female line among the Grecian tribes
is found in particular marriages which occurred in the traditionary
period. Thus Salmōneus and Krētheus were own brothers, the sons
of Æolus. The former gave his daughter Tyrō in marriage to her
uncle. With descent in the male line, Krētheus and Tyrō would
have been of the same gens, and could not have married for that reason;
but with descent in the female line, they would have been of different
gentes, and therefore not of gentile kin. Their marriage in that case
would not have violated strict gentile usages. It is immaterial that
the persons named are mythical, because the legend would apply gentile
usages correctly. This marriage is explainable on the hypothesis of
descent in the female line, which in turn raises a presumption of its
existence at the time, or as justified by their ancient usages which
had not wholly died out.

The same fact is revealed by marriages within the historical period,
when an ancient practice seems to have survived the change of descent
to the male line, even though it violated the gentile obligations
of the parties. After the time of Solon a brother might marry his
half-sister, provided they were born of different mothers, but not
conversely. With descent in the female line, they would be of different
gentes, and, therefore, not of gentile kin. Their marriage would
interfere with no gentile obligation. But with descent in the male
line, which was the fact when the cases about to be cited occurred,
they would be of the same gens, and consequently under prohibition.
Cimon married his half-sister, Elpinice, their father being the same,
but their mothers different. In the _Eubulides_ of Demosthenes we find
a similar case. “My grandfather,” says Euxithius, “married his sister,
she not being his sister by the same mother.”[401] Such marriages,
against which a strong prejudice had arisen among the Athenians as
early as the time of Solon, are explainable as a survival of an ancient
custom with respect to marriage, which prevailed when descent was in
the female line, and which had not been entirely eradicated in the time
of Demosthenes.

Descent in the female line presupposes the gens to distinguish
the lineage. With our present knowledge of the ancient and modern
prevalence of the gentile organization upon five continents, including
the Australian, and of the archaic constitution of the gens, traces of
descent in the female line might be expected to exist in traditions, if
not in usages coming down to historical times. It is not supposable,
therefore, that the Lycians, the Cretans, the Athenians and the
Locrians, if the evidence is sufficient to include the last two,
invented a usage so remarkable as descent in the female line. The
hypothesis that it was the ancient law of the Latin, Grecian, and other
Græco-Italian gentes affords a more rational as well as satisfactory
explanation of the facts. The influence of property and the desire to
transmit it to children furnished adequate motives for the change to
the male line.

It may be inferred that marrying out of the gens was the rule among
the Athenians, before as well as after the time of Solon, from the
custom of registering the wife, upon her marriage, in the phratry of
her husband, and the children, daughters as well as sons, in the gens
and phratry of their father.[402] The fundamental principle on which
the gens was founded was the prohibition of intermarriage among its
members as consanguinei. In each gens the number of members was not
large. Assuming sixty thousand as the number of registered Athenians in
the time of Solon, and dividing them equally among the three hundred
and sixty Attic gentes, it would give but one hundred and sixty persons
to each gens. The gens was a great family of kindred persons, with
common religious rites, a common burial place, and, in general, common
lands. From the theory of its constitution, intermarriage would be
disallowed. With the change of descent to the male line, with the rise
of monogamy and an exclusive inheritance in the children, and with the
appearance of heiresses, the way was being gradually prepared for free
marriage regardless of gens, but with a prohibition limited to certain
degrees of near consanguinity. Marriages in the human family began in
the group, all the males and females of which, excluding the children,
were joint husbands and wives; but the husbands and wives were of
different gentes; and it ended in marriage between single pairs, with
an exclusive cohabitation. In subsequent chapters an attempt will be
made to trace the several forms of marriage and of the family from the
first stage to the last.

A system of consanguinity came in with the gens, distinguished as the
Turanian in Asia, and as the Ganowánian in America, which extended the
prohibition of intermarriage as far as the relationship of brother and
sister extended among collaterals. This system still prevails among the
American aborigines, in portions of Asia and Africa, and in Australia.

It unquestionably prevailed among the Grecian and Latin tribes in
the same anterior period, and traces of it remained down to the
traditionary period. One feature of the Turanian system may be restated
as follows: the children of brothers are themselves brothers and
sisters, and as such could not intermarry; the children of sisters
stood in the same relationship, and were under the same prohibition. It
may serve to explain the celebrated legend of the Danaidæ, one version
of which furnished to Aeschylus his subject for the tragedy of the
_Suppliants_. The reader will remember that Danaus and Ægyptus were
brothers, and descendants of Argive Io. The former by different wives
had fifty daughters, and the latter by different wives had fifty sons;
and in due time the sons of Ægyptus sought the daughters of Danaus
in marriage. Under the system of consanguinity appertaining to the
gens in its archaic form, and which remained until superseded by the
system introduced by monogamy, they were brothers and sisters, and for
that reason could not marry. If descent at the time was in the male
line, the children of Danaus and Ægyptus would have been of the same
gens, which would have interposed an additional objection to their
marriage, and of equal weight. Nevertheless the sons of Ægyptus sought
to overstep these barriers and enforce wedlock upon the Danaidæ; whilst
the latter, crossing the sea, fled from Egypt to Argos to escape what
they pronounced an unlawful and incestuous union. In the _Prometheus_
of the same author, this event is foretold to Io by Prometheus, namely:
that in the fifth generation from her future son Epaphus, a band of
fifty virgins should come to Argos, not voluntarily, but fleeing from
incestuous wedlock with the sons of Ægyptus.[403] Their flight with
abhorrence from the proposed nuptials finds its explanation in the
ancient system of consanguinity, independently of gentile law. Apart
from this explanation the event has no significance, and their aversion
to the marriages would have been mere prudery.

The tragedy of the _Suppliants_ is founded upon the incident of their
flight over the sea to Argos, to claim the protection of their Argive
kindred against the proposed violence of the sons of Ægyptus, who
pursued them. At Argos the Danaidæ declare that they did not depart
from Egypt under the sentence of banishment, but fled from men of
common descent with themselves, scorning unholy marriage with the sons
of Ægyptus.[404] Their reluctance is placed exclusively upon the fact
of kin, thus implying an existing prohibition against such marriages,
which they had been trained to respect. After hearing the case of the
Suppliants, the Argives in council resolved to afford them protection,
which of itself implies the existence of the prohibition of the
marriages and the validity of their objection. At the time this tragedy
was produced, Athenian law permitted and even required marriage between
the children of brothers in the case of heiresses and female orphans,
although the rule seems to have been confined to these exceptional
cases; such marriages, therefore, would not seem to the Athenians
either incestuous or unlawful; but this tradition of the Danaidæ had
come down from a remote antiquity, and its whole significance depended
upon the force of the custom forbidding the nuptials. The turning-point
of the tradition and its incidents was their inveterate repugnance
to the proposed marriages as forbidden by law and custom. No other
reason is assigned, and no other is needed. At the same time their
conduct is intelligible on the assumption that such marriages were as
unpermissible then, as marriage between a brother and sister would
be at the present time. The attempt of the sons of Ægyptus to break
through the barrier interposed by the Turanian system of consanguinity
may mark the time when this system was beginning to give way, and the
present system, which came in with monogamy, was beginning to assert
itself, and which was destined to set aside gentile usages and Turanian
consanguinity by the substitution of fixed degrees as the limits of
prohibition.

Upon the evidence adduced it seems probable that among the Pelasgian,
Hellenic and Italian tribes descent was originally in the female line,
from which, under the influence of property and inheritance, it
was changed to the male line. Whether or not these tribes anciently
possessed the Turanian system of consanguinity, the reader will be
better able to judge after that system has been presented, with the
evidence of its wide prevalence in ancient society.

The length of the traditionary period of these tribes is of course
unknown in the years of its duration, but it must be measured by
thousands of years. It probably reached back of the invention of the
process of smelting iron ore, and if so, passed through the Later
Period of barbarism and entered the Middle Period. Their condition
of advancement in the Middle Period must have at least equaled that
of the Aztecs, Mayas and Peruvians, who were found in the status of
the Middle Period; and their condition in the Later Period must have
surpassed immensely that of the Indian tribes named. The vast and
varied experience of these European tribes in the two great ethnical
periods named, during which they achieved the remaining elements
of civilization, is entirely lost, excepting as it is imperfectly
disclosed in their traditions, and more fully by their acts of life,
their customs, language and institutions, as revealed to us by the
poems of Homer. Empires and kingdoms were necessarily unknown in these
periods; but tribes and inconsiderable nations, city and village life,
the growth and development of the arts of life, and physical, mental
and moral improvement, were among the particulars of that progress. The
loss of the events of these great periods to human knowledge was much
greater than can easily be imagined.



CHAPTER XV.

GENTES IN OTHER TRIBES OF THE HUMAN FAMILY.

    THE SCOTTISH CLAN.—THE IRISH SEPT.—GERMANIC TRIBES.—TRACES
    OF A PRIOR GENTILE SYSTEM.—GENTES IN SOUTHERN ASIATIC
    TRIBES.—IN NORTHERN.—IN URALIAN TRIBES.—HUNDRED FAMILIES OF
    CHINESE.—HEBREW TRIBES.—COMPOSED OF GENTES AND PHRATRIES
    APPARENTLY.—GENTES IN AFRICAN TRIBES.—IN AUSTRALIAN
    TRIBES.—SUBDIVISIONS OF FEJEES AND PEWAS.—WIDE DISTRIBUTION OF
    GENTILE ORGANIZATION.


Having considered the organization into gentes, phratries and tribes in
their archaic as well as later form, it remains to trace the extent of
its prevalence in the human family, and particularly with respect to
the gens, the basis of the system.

The Celtic branch of the Aryan family retained, in the Scottish clan
and Irish sept, the organization into gentes to a later period of
time than any other branch of the family, unless the Aryans of India
are an exception. The Scottish clan in particular was existing in
remarkable vitality in the Highlands of Scotland in the middle of the
last century. It was an excellent type of the gens in organization
and in spirit, and an extraordinary illustration of the power of the
gentile life over its members. The illustrious author of Waverley has
perpetuated a number of striking characters developed under clan life,
and stamped with its peculiarities. Evan Dhu, Torquil, Rob Roy and many
others rise before the mind as illustrations of the influence of the
gens in molding the character of individuals. If Sir Walter exaggerated
these characters in some respects to suit the emergencies of a tale,
they had a real foundation. The same clans, a few centuries earlier,
when clan life was stronger and external influences were weaker, would
probably have verified the pictures. We find in their feuds and blood
revenge, in their localization by gentes, in their use of lands in
common, in the fidelity of the clansman to his chief and of the members
of the clan to each other, the usual and persistent features of gentile
society. As portrayed by Scott, it was a more intense and chivalrous
gentile life than we are able to find in the gentes of the Greeks and
Romans, or, at the other extreme, in those of the American aborigines.
Whether the phratric organization existed among them does not appear;
but at some anterior period both the phratry and the tribe doubtless
did exist. It is well known that the British government were compelled
to break up the Highland clans, as organizations, in order to bring the
people under the authority of law and the usages of political society.
Descent was in the male line, the children of the males remaining
members of the clan, while the children of its female members belonged
to the clans of their respective fathers.

We shall pass over the Irish _sept_, the _phis_ or _phrara_ of the
Albanians, which embody the remains of a prior gentile organization,
and the traces of a similar organization in Dalmatia and Croatia; and
also the Sanskrit _ganas_, the existence of which term in the language
implies that this branch of the Aryan family formerly possessed the
same institution. The communities of Villeins on French estates in
former times, noticed by Sir Henry Maine in his recent work, may prove
to be, as he intimates, remains of ancient Celtic gentes. “Now that the
explanation has once been given,” he remarks, “there can be no doubt
that these associations were not really voluntary partnerships, but
groups of kinsmen; not, however, so often organized on the ordinary
type of the Village-Community as on that of the House-Community, which
has recently been examined in Dalmatia and Croatia. Each of them was
what the Hindus call a Joint-Undivided family, a collection of assumed
descendants from a common ancestor, preserving a common hearth and
common meals during several generations.”[405]

A brief reference should be made to the question whether any traces
of the gentile organization remained among the German tribes when
they first came under historical notice. That they inherited this
institution, with other Aryan tribes, from the common ancestors of the
Aryan family, is probable. When first known to the Romans, they were
in the Upper Status of barbarism. They could scarcely have developed
the idea of government further than the Grecian and Latin tribes, who
were in advance of them, when each respectively became known. While the
Germans may have acquired an imperfect conception of a state, founded
upon territory and upon property, it is not probable that they had any
knowledge of the second great plan of government which the Athenians
were first among Aryan tribes to establish. The condition and mode of
life of the German tribes, as described by Cæsar and Tacitus, tend to
the conclusion that their several societies were held together through
personal relations, and with but slight reference to territory; and
that their government was through these relations. Civil chiefs and
military commanders acquired and held office through the elective
principle, and constituted the council which was the chief instrument
of government. On lesser affairs, Tacitus remarks, the chiefs consult,
but on those of greater importance the whole community. While the final
decision of all important questions belonged to the people, they were
first maturely considered by the chiefs.[406] The close resemblance of
these to Grecian and Latin usages will be perceived. The government
consisted of three powers, the council of chiefs, the assembly of the
people, and the military commander.

Cæsar remarks that the Germans were not studious of agriculture, the
greater part of their food consisting of milk, cheese and meat; nor had
anyone a fixed quantity of land, or his own individual boundaries, but
the magistrates and chiefs each year assigned to the gentes and kinsmen
who had united in one body (_gentibus cognationibusque hominum,
qui una coerint_) as much land, and in such places as seemed best,
compelling them the next year to remove to another place.[407] To give
effect to the expression in parenthesis, it must be supposed that he
found among them groups of persons, larger than a family, united on
the basis of kin, to whom, as groups of persons, lands were allotted.
It excludes individuals, and even the family, both of whom were merged
in the group thus united for cultivation and subsistence. It seems
probable, from the form of the statement, that the German family at
this time was syndyasmian; and that several related families were
united in households and practiced communism in living.

Tacitus refers to a usage of the German tribes in the arrangement
of their forces in battle, by which kinsmen were placed side by
side. It would have no significance, if kinship were limited to near
consanguinei. And what is an especial incitement of their courage, he
remarks, neither chance nor a fortuitous gathering of the forces make
up the squadron of horse, or the infantry wedge; but they were formed
according to families and kinships (_familiæ et propinquitates_).[408]
This expression, and that previously quoted from Cæsar, seem to
indicate the remains at least of a prior gentile organization, which at
this time was giving place to the mark or local district as the basis
of a still imperfect political system.

The German tribes, for the purpose of military levies, had the mark
(_markgenossenschaft_), which also existed among the English Saxons,
and a larger group, the _gau_, to which Cæsar and Tacitus gave the
name of _pagus_.[409] It is doubtful whether the mark and the _gau_
were then strictly geographical districts, standing to each other in
the relations of township and county, each circumscribed by bounds,
with the people in each politically organized. It seems more probable
that the _gau_ was a group of settlements associated with reference
to military levies. As such, the mark and the _gau_ were the germs of
the future township and county, precisely as the Athenian naucrary and
trittys were the rudiments of the Cleisthenean deme and local tribe.
These organizations seemed transitional stages between a gentile
and a political system, the grouping of the people still resting on
consanguinity.[410]

We naturally turn to the Asiatic continent, where the types of mankind
are the most numerous, and where, consequently, the period of human
occupation has been longest, to find the earliest traces of the gentile
organization. But here the transformations of society have been the
most extended, and the influence of tribes and nations upon each
other the most constant. The early development of Chinese and Indian
civilization and the overmastering influence of modern civilization
have wrought such changes in the condition of Asiatic stocks that
their ancient institutions are not easily ascertainable. Nevertheless,
the whole experience of mankind from savagery to civilization was
worked out upon the Asiatic continent, and among its fragmentary tribes
the remains of their ancient institutions must now be sought.

Descent in the female line is still very common in the ruder Asiatic
tribes; but there are numerous tribes among whom it is traced in
the male line. It is the limitation of descent to one line or the
other, followed by the organization of the body of consanguinei, thus
separated under a common name which indicates a gens.

In the Magar tribe of Nepaul, Latham remarks, “there are twelve thums.
All individuals belonging to the same thum are supposed to be descended
from the same male ancestor; descent from the same mother being by no
means necessary. So husband and wife must belong to different thums.
Within one and the same there is no marriage. Do you wish for a wife?
If so, look to the thum of your neighbor; at any rate look beyond your
own. This is the first time I have found occasion to mention this
practice. It will not be the last; on the contrary, the principle it
suggests is so common as to be almost universal. We shall find it
in Australia; we shall find it in North and South America; we shall
find it in Africa; we shall find it in Europe; we shall suspect and
infer it in many places where the actual evidence of its existence is
incomplete.”[411] In this case we have in the _thum_ clear evidence of
the existence of a gens, with descent in the male line.

“The Munnieporees, and the following tribes inhabiting the hills round
Munniepore—the Koupooes, the Mows, the Murams, and the Murring—are
each and all divided into four families—Koomul, Looang, Angom, and
Ningthajà. A member of any of these families may marry a member of
any other, but the intermarriage of members of the same family is
strictly prohibited.”[412] In these families may be recognized four
gentes in each of these tribes. Bell, speaking of the _Telûsh_ of the
Circassians, remarks that “the tradition in regard to them is, that
the members of each and all sprang from the same stock or ancestry; and
thus they may be considered as so many septs or clans.... These cousins
german, or members of the same fraternity, are not only themselves
interdicted from intermarrying, but their serfs, too, must wed with
serfs of another fraternity.”[413] It is probable that the _telûsh_ is
a gens.

Among the Bengalese “the four castes are subdivided into many different
sects or classes, and each of these is again subdivided; for instance,
I am of Nundy tribe [gens?], and if I were a heathen I could not
marry a woman of the same tribe, although the caste must be the same.
The children are of the tribe of their father. Property descends to
the sons. In case the person has no sons, to his daughters; and if
he leaves neither, to his nearest relatives. Castes are subdivided,
such as _Shuro_, which is one of the first divisions; but it is again
subdivided, such as _Khayrl_, _Tilly_, _Tamally_, _Tanty_, _Chomor_,
_Kari_, etc. A man belonging to one of these last-named subdivisions
cannot marry a woman of the same.”[414] These smallest groups number
usually about a hundred persons, and still retain several of the
characteristics of a gens.

Mr. Tyler remarks, that “in India it is unlawful for a Brahman to
marry a wife whose clan-name or _ghotra_ (literally ‘cow-stall’) is
the same as his own, a prohibition which bars marriage among relatives
in the male line indefinitely. This law appears in the code of Manu
as applying to the first three castes, and connexions on the female
side are also forbidden to marry within certain wide limits.”[415] And
again: “Among the Kols of Chota-Nagpur, we find many of the Oraon and
Munda clans named after animals, as eel, hawk, crow, heron, and they
must not kill or eat what they are named after.”[416]

The Mongolians approach the American aborigines quite nearly in
physical characteristics. They are divided into numerous tribes. “The
connection,” says Latham, “between the members of a tribe is that of
blood, pedigree, or descent; the tribe being, in some cases, named
after a real or supposed patriarch. The tribe, by which we translate
the native name _aimauk_, or _aimâk_, is a large division falling into
so many _kokhums_, or banners.”[417] The statement is not full enough
to show the existence of gentes. Their neighbors, the Tungusians, are
composed of subdivisions named after animals, as the horse, the dog,
the reindeer, which imply the gentile organizations, but it cannot be
asserted without further particulars.

Sir John Lubbock remarks of the Kalmucks that according to De Hell,
they “are divided into hordes, and no man can marry a woman of the
same horde;” and of the Ostiaks, that they “regard it as a crime to
marry a woman of the same family or even of the same name;” and that
“when a Jakut (Siberia) wishes to marry, he must choose a girl from
another clan.”[418] We have in each of these cases evidence of the
existence of a gens, one of the rules of which, as has been shown, is
the prohibition of intermarriage among its members. The Yurak Samoyeds
are organized in gentes. Klaproth, quoted by Latham, remarks that “this
division of the kinsmanship is so rigidly observed that no Samoyed
takes a wife from the kinsmanship to which he himself belongs. On the
contrary, he seeks her in one of the other two.”[419]

A peculiar family system prevails among the Chinese which seems to
embody the remains of an ancient gentile organization. Mr. Robert
Hart, of Canton, in a letter to the author remarks, “that the Chinese
expression for the people is _Pih-sing_, which means _the Hundred
Family Names_; but whether this is mere word-painting, or had its
origin at a time when the Chinese general family consisted of one
hundred subfamilies or tribes [gentes?] I am unable to determine. At
the present day there are about four hundred family names in this
country, among which I find some that have reference to animals,
fruits, metals, natural objects, etc., and which may be translated as
Horse, Sheep, Ox, Fish, Bird, Phœnix, Plum, Flower, Leaf, Rice,
Forest, River, Hill, Water, Cloud, Gold, Hide, Bristles, etc., etc. In
some parts of the country large villages are met with, in each of which
there exists but one family name; thus in one district will be found,
say, three villages, each containing two or three thousand people, the
one of the Horse, the second of the Sheep, and the third of the Ox
family name.... Just as among the North American Indians husbands and
wives are of different tribes [gentes], so in China husband and wife
are always of different families, _i. e._, of different surnames. Custom
and law alike prohibit intermarriage on the part of people having the
same family surname. The children are of the father’s family, that is,
they take his family surname.... Where the father dies intestate the
property generally remains undivided, but under the control of the
oldest son during the life of the widow. On her death he divides the
property between himself and his brothers, the shares of the juniors
depending entirely upon the will of the elder brother.”

The family here described appears to be a gens, analogous to the Roman
in the time of Romulus; but whether it was reintegrated, with other
gentes of common descent, in a phratry does not appear. Moreover, the
gentiles are still located as an independent consanguine body in one
area, as the Roman gentes were localized in the early period, and the
names of the gentes are still of the archaic type. Their increase
to four hundred by segmentation might have been expected; but their
maintenance to the present time, after the period of barbarism has long
passed away, is the remarkable fact, and an additional proof of their
immobility as a people. It may be suspected also that the monogamian
family in these villages has not attained its full development, and
that communism in living, and in wives as well, may not be unknown
among them. Among the wild aboriginal tribes, who still inhabit the
mountain regions of China and who speak dialects different from the
Mandarin, the gens in its archaic form may yet be discovered. To these
isolated tribes, we should naturally look for the ancient institutions
of the Chinese.

In like manner the tribes of Afghanistan are said to be subdivided into
clans; but whether these clans are true gentes has not been ascertained.

Not to weary the reader with further details of a similar character, a
sufficient number of cases have been adduced to create a presumption
that the gentile organization prevailed very generally and widely among
the remote ancestors of the present Asiatic tribes and nations.

The twelve tribes of the Hebrews, as they appear in the Book of
Numbers, represent a reconstruction of Hebrew society by legislative
procurement. The condition of barbarism had then passed away, and that
of civilization had commenced. The principle on which the tribes were
organized, as bodies of consanguinei, presuppose an anterior gentile
system, which had remained in existence and was now systematized. At
this time they had no knowledge of any other plan of government than a
gentile society formed of consanguine groups united through personal
relations. Their subsequent localization in Palestine by consanguine
tribes, each district named after one of the twelve sons of Jacob,
with the exception of the tribe of Levi, is a practical recognition of
the fact that they were organized by lineages and not into a community
of citizens. The history of the most remarkable nation of the Semitic
family has been concentrated around the names of Abraham, Isaac and
Jacob, and the twelve sons of the latter.

Hebrew history commences essentially with Abraham, the account of whose
forefathers is limited to a pedigree barren of details. A few passages
will show the extent of the progress then made, and the status of
advancement in which Abraham appeared. He is described as “very rich
in cattle, in silver, and in gold.”[420] For the cave of Machpelah
“Abraham weighed to Ephron the silver, which he had named in the
audience of the sons of Heth, four hundred shekels of silver, current
_money_ with the merchant.”[421] With respect to domestic life and
subsistence, the following passage may be cited: “And Abraham hastened
into the tent unto Sarah, and said, Make ready quickly three measures
of fine meal; knead _it_, and make cakes upon the hearth.”[422] “And
he took butter and milk, and the calf which he had dressed, and set it
before them.”[423] With respect to implements, raiment and ornaments:
“Abraham took the fire in his hand and a knife.”[424] “And the servant
brought forth jewels of silver, and jewels of gold, and raiment, and
gave them to Rebekah: he gave also to her brother and to her mother
precious things.”[425] When she met Isaac, Rebekah “took a veil and
covered herself.”[426] In the same connection are mentioned the camel,
ass, ox, sheep and goat, together with flocks and herds; the grain
mill, the water pitcher, earrings, bracelets, tents, houses and cities.
The bow and arrow, the sword, corn and wine, and fields sown with
grain, are mentioned. They indicate the Upper Status of barbarism for
Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Writing in this branch of the Semitic family
was probably then unknown. The degree of development shown corresponds
substantially with that of the Homeric Greeks.

Early Hebrew marriage customs indicate the presence of the gens, and
in its archaic form. Abraham, by his servant, seemingly purchased
Rebekah as a wife for Isaac; the “precious things” being given to the
brother, and to the mother of the bride, but not to the father. In
this case the presents went to the gentile kindred, provided a gens
existed, with descent in the female line. Again, Abraham married his
half-sister Sarah. “And yet indeed,” he says, “she _is_ my sister; she
is the daughter of my father, but not the daughter of my mother: and
she became my wife.”[427]

With an existing gens and descent in the female line Abraham and Sarah
would have belonged to different gentes, and although of _blood kin_
they were not of _gentile kin_, and could have married by gentile
usage. The case would have been reversed in both particulars with
descent in the male line. Nahor married his niece, the daughter of
his brother Haran;[428] and Amram, the father of Moses, married his
aunt, the sister of his father, who became the mother of the Hebrew
lawgiver.[429] In these cases, with descent in the female line,
the persons marrying would have belonged to different gentes; but
otherwise with descent in the male line. While these cases do not prove
absolutely the existence of gentes, the latter would afford such an
explanation of them as to raise a presumption of the existence of the
gentile organization in its archaic form.

When the Mosaic legislation was completed the Hebrews were a civilized
people, but not far enough advanced to institute political society.
The scripture account shows that they were organized in a series of
consanguine groups in an ascending scale, analogous to the gens,
phratry and tribe of the Greeks. In the muster and organization of
the Hebrews, both as a society and as an army, while in the Sinaitic
peninsula, repeated references are made to these consanguine groups in
an ascending series, the seeming equivalents of a gens, phratry and
tribe. Thus, the tribe of Levi consisted of eight gentes, organized in
three phratries, as follows:

              _Tribe of Levi._
    Sons  {    I. _Gershon._ 7,500 Males.
    of    {   II. _Kohath._  8,600   ”
    Levi. {  III. _Merari._  6,200   ”

          I. _Gershonite Phratry._
    _Gentes._—1. _Libni._    2. _Shimei._

         II. _Kohathite Phratry._
    _Gentes._—1. _Amram._  2. _Izhar._  3. _Hebron._  4. _Uzziel._

        III. _Merarite Phratry._
    _Gentes._—1. _Mahli._   2. _Mushi._

“Number the children of Levi after the house of their fathers, by
their families.... And these were the sons of Levi by their names;
Gershon, and Kohath, and Merari. And these were the names of the sons
of Gershon by their families; Libni, and Shimei. And the sons of Kohath
by their families; Amram, and Izhar, Hebron, and Uzziel. And the sons
of Merari by their families; Mahli, and Mushi. These are the families
of the Levites by the house of their fathers.”[430]

The description of these groups sometimes commences with the upper
member of the series, and sometimes with the lower or the unit. Thus:
“Of the children of Simeon, by their generations, after their families,
by the house of their fathers.”[431] Here _the children of Simeon, with
their generations_, constitute the _tribe_; the _families_ are the
_phratries_; and _the house of the father_ is the _gens_. Again: “And
the chief of the house of the father of the families of the Kohathites
shall be Elizaphan the son of Uzziel.”[432] Here we find the gens
first, and then the phratry, and last the tribe. The person named was
the chief of the phratry. Each house of the father also had its ensign
or banner to distinguish it from others. “Every man of the children
of Israel shall pitch by his own standard, with the ensign of their
father’s house.”[433] These terms describe actual organizations; and
they show that their military organization was by gentes, by phratries
and by tribes.

With respect to the first and smallest of these groups, “the house
of the father,” it must have numbered several hundred persons from
the figures given of the number in each phratry. The Hebrew term
_beth’ ab_, signifies _paternal house_, _house of the father_, and
_family house_. If the Hebrews possessed the gens, it was this group
of persons. The use of two terms to describe it would leave a doubt,
unless individual families under monogamy had then become so numerous
and so prominent that this circumlocution was necessary to cover the
kindred. We have literally, the house of Amram, of Izhar, of Hebron,
and of Uzziel; but as the Hebrews at that time could have had no
conception of a _house_ as now applied to a titled family, it probably
signified, as used, kindred or lineage.[434] Since each division
and subdivision is headed by a male, and since Hebrew descents are
traced through males exclusively, descent among them, at this time,
was undoubtedly in the male line. Next in the ascending scale is
the _family_, which seems to be a phratry. The Hebrew term for this
organization, _mishpacah_, signifies _union_, _clanship_. It was
composed of two or more houses of the father, derived by segmentation
from an original group, and distinguished by a phratric name. It
answers very closely to the phratry. The family or phratry had an
annual sacrificial feast.[435] Lastly, the _tribe_, called in Hebrew
_matteh_, which signifies a _branch_, _stem_ or _shoot_, is the
analogue of the Grecian tribe.

Very few particulars are given respecting the rights, privileges and
obligations of the members of these bodies of consanguinei. The idea of
kin which united each organization from the _house of the father_ to
the _tribe_, is carried out in a form much more marked and precise than
in the corresponding organizations of Grecian, Latin or American Indian
tribes. While the Athenian traditions claimed that the four tribes were
derived from the four sons of Ion, they did not pretend to explain the
origin of the gentes and phratries. On the contrary, the Hebrew account
not only derives the twelve tribes genealogically from the twelve
sons of Jacob, but also the gentes and phratries from the children
and descendants of each. Human experience furnishes no parallel of
the growth of gentes and phratries precisely in this way. The account
must be explained as a classification of existing consanguine groups,
according to the knowledge preserved by tradition, in doing which minor
obstacles were overcome by legislative constraint.

The Hebrews styled themselves the “People of Israel,” and also a
“Congregation.”[436] It is a direct recognition of the fact that their
organization was social, and not political.

In Africa we encounter a chaos of savagery and barbarism. Original arts
and inventions have largely disappeared, through fabrics and utensils
introduced from external sources; but savagery in its lowest forms,
cannibalism included, and barbarism in its lowest forms prevail over
the greater part of the continent. Among the interior tribes, there is
a nearer approach to an indigenous culture and to a normal condition;
but Africa, in the main, is a barren ethnological field.

Although the home of the Negro race, it is well known that their
numbers are limited and their areas small. Latham significantly remarks
that “the negro is an exceptional African.”[437] The Ashiras, Aponos,
Ishogos and Ashangos, between the Congo and the Niger, visited by
Du Chaillu, are of the true negro type. “Each village,” he remarks,
“had its chief, and further in the interior the villages seemed to
be governed by elders, each elder with his people having a separate
portion of the village to themselves. There was in each clan the
ifoumou, fumou, or acknowledged head of the clan (ifoumou meaning the
_source_, the _father_). I have never been able to obtain from the
natives a knowledge concerning the splitting of their tribes into
clans; they seemed not to know how it happened, but the formation of
new clans does not take place now among them.... The house of a chief
or elder is not better than those of his neighbors. The despotic form
of government is unknown.... A council of the elders is necessary
before one is put to death.... Tribes and clans intermarry with each
other, and this brings about a friendly feeling among the people.
People of the same clan cannot intermarry with each other. The least
consanguinity is considered an abomination; nevertheless the nephew
has not the slightest objection to take his uncle’s wives, and, as
among the Balakai, the son takes his father’s wives, except his own
mother.... Polygamy and slavery exist everywhere among the tribes I
have visited.... The law of inheritance among the Western tribes is,
that the next brother inherits the wealth of the eldest (women, slaves,
etc.), but that if the youngest dies the eldest inherits his property,
and if there are no brothers that the nephew inherits it. The headship
of the clan or family is hereditary, following the same law as that of
the inheritance of property. In the case of all the brothers having
died, the eldest son of the eldest sister inherits, and it goes on
thus until the branch is extinguished, for all clans are considered as
descended from the female side.”[438]

All the elements of a true gens are embodied in the foregoing
particulars, namely, descent is limited to one line, in this case the
female, which gives the gens in its archaic form. Moreover, descent is
in the female line with respect to office and to property, as well as
the gentile name. The office of chief passes from brother to brother,
or from uncle to nephew, that nephew being the son of a sister, as
among the American aborigines; whilst the sons are excluded because
not members of the gens of the deceased chief. Marriage in the gens is
also forbidden. The only material omission in these precise statements
is the names of some of the gentes. The hereditary feature requires
further explanation.

Among the Banyai of the Zambezi river, who are a people of higher
grade than the negroes, Dr. Livingstone observed the following usages:
“The government of the Banyai is rather peculiar, being a sort of
feudal republicanism. The chief is elected, and they choose the son
of a deceased chief’s sister in preference to his own offspring. When
dissatisfied with one candidate, they even go to a distant tribe for a
successor, who is usually of the family of the late chief, a brother,
or a sister’s son, but never his own son or daughter.... All the
wives, goods, and children of his predecessor belong to him.”[439]
Dr. Livingstone does not give the particulars of their social
organization; but the descent of the office of chief from brother to
brother, or from uncle to nephew, implies the existence of the gens
with descent in the female line.

The numerous tribes occupying the country watered by the Zambezi, and
from thence southward to Cape Colony, are regarded by the natives
themselves, according to Dr. Livingstone, as one stock in three great
divisions, the Bechuanas, the Basutos, and the Kafirs.[440] With
respect to the former, he remarks that “the Bechuana tribes are named
after certain animals, showing probably that in ancient times they
were addicted to animal worship like the ancient Egyptians. The term
Bakatla means ‘they of the Monkey’; Bakuona, ‘they of the Alligator’;
Batlapi, ‘they of the Fish’; each tribe having a superstitious dread of
the animal after which it is called.... A tribe never eats the animal
which is its namesake.... We find traces of many ancient tribes in
individual members of those now extinct; as Bátau, ‘they of the Lion’;
Banoga, ‘they of the Serpent,’ though no such tribes now exist.”[441]
These animal names are suggestive of the gens rather than the tribe.
Moreover, the fact that single individuals are found, each of whom was
the last survivor of his tribe, would be more likely to have occurred
if gens were understood in the place of tribe. Among the Bangalas of
the Cassange Valley, in Argola, Livingstone remarks that “a chief’s
brother inherits in preference to his sons. The sons of a sister belong
to her brother; and he often sells his nephews to pay his debts.”[442]
Here again we have evidence of descent in the female line; but his
statements are too brief and general in these and other cases to show
definitely whether or not they possessed the gens.

Among the Australians the gentes of the Kamilaroi have already been
noticed. In ethnical position the aborigines of this great island
are near the bottom of the scale. When discovered they were not only
savages, but in a low condition of savagery. Some of the tribes were
cannibals. Upon this last question Mr. Fison, before mentioned, writes
as follows to the author: “Some, at least, of the tribes are cannibals.
The evidence of this is conclusive. The Wide Bay tribes eat not only
their enemies slain in battle, but their friends also who have been
killed, and even those who have died a natural death, provided they are
in good condition. Before eating they skin them, and preserve the skins
by rubbing them with mingled fat and charcoal. These skins they prize
very highly, believing them to have great medicinal value.”

Such pictures of human life enable us to understand the condition of
savagery, the grade of its usages, the degree of material development,
and the low level of the mental and moral life of the people.
Australian humanity, as seen in their cannibal customs, stands on
as low a plane as it has been known to touch on the earth. And yet
the Australians possessed an area of continental dimensions, rich in
minerals, not uncongenial in climate, and fairly supplied with the
means of subsistence. But after an occupation which must be measured
by thousands of years, they are still savages of the grade above
indicated. Left to themselves they would probably have remained for
thousands of years to come, not without any, but with such slight
improvement as scarcely to lighten the dark shade of their savage state.

Among the Australians, whose institutions are normal and homogeneous,
the organization into gentes is not confined to the Kamilaroi, but
seems to be universal. The Narrinyeri of South Australia, near Lacepede
Bay are organized in gentes named after animals and insects. Rev.
George Taplin, writing to my friend Mr. Fison, after stating that the
Narrinyeri do not marry into their own gens, and that the children
were of the gens of their father, continues as follows: “There
are no castes, nor are there any classes, similar to those of the
Kamilaroi-speaking tribes of New South Wales. But each tribe or family
(and a tribe is a family) has its totem, or _ngaitye_; and indeed some
individuals have this _ngaitye_. It is regarded as the man’s tutelary
genius. It is some animal, bird, or insect.... The natives are very
strict in their marriage arrangements. A tribe [gens] is considered a
family, and a man never marries into his own tribe.”

Mr. Fison also writes, “that among the tribes of the Maranoa district,
Queensland, whose dialect is called _Urghi_, according to information
communicated to me by Mr. A. S. P. Cameron, the same classification
exists as among the Kamilaroi-speaking tribes, both as to the class
names and the totems.” With respect to the Australians of the Darling
River, upon information communicated by Mr. Charles G. N. Lockwood,
he further remarks, that “they are subdivided into tribes [gentes],
mentioning the Emu, Wild Duck, and Kangaroo, but without saying whether
there are others, and that the children take both the class name and
totem of the mother.”[443]

From the existence of the gentile organization among the tribes named
its general prevalence among the Australian aborigines is rendered
probable; although the institution, as has elsewhere been pointed out,
is in the incipient stages of its development.

Our information with respect to the domestic institutions of the
inhabitants of Polynesia, Micronesia and the Papuan Islands is still
limited and imperfect. No traces of the gentile organization have been
discovered among the Hawaiians, Samoans, Marquesas Islanders or New
Zealanders. Their system of consanguinity is still primitive, showing
that their institutions have not advanced as far as this organization
presupposes.[444] In some of the Micronesian Islands the office of
chief is transmitted through females;[445] but this usage might exist
independently of the gens. The Fijians are subdivided into several
tribes speaking dialects of the same stock language. One of these, the
Rewas, consists of four subdivisions under distinctive names, and each
of these is again subdivided. It does not seem probable that the last
subdivisions are gentes, for the reason, among others, that its members
are allowed to intermarry. Descent is in the male line. In like manner
the Tongans are composed of divisions, which are again subdivided the
same as the Rewas.

Around the simple ideas relating to marriage and the family, to
subsistence and to government, the earliest social organizations were
formed; and with them an exposition of the structure and principle of
ancient society must commence. Adopting the theory of a progressive
development of mankind through the experience of the ages, the
insulation of the inhabitants of Oceanica, their limited local areas,
and their restricted means of subsistence predetermined a slow rate
of progress. They still represent a condition of mankind on the
continent of Asia in times immensely remote from the present; and while
peculiarities, incident to their insulation, undoubtedly exist, these
island societies represent one of the early phases of the great stream
of human progress. An exposition of their institutions, inventions and
discoveries, and mental and moral traits, would supply one of the great
needs of anthropological science.

This concludes the discussion of the organization into gentes, and
the range of its distribution. The organization has been found among
the Australians and African Negroes, with traces of the system in
other African tribes. It has been found generally prevalent among
that portion of the American aborigines who when discovered were
in the Lower Status of barbarism; and also among a portion of the
Village Indians who were in the Middle Status of barbarism. In like
manner it existed in full vitality among the Grecian and Latin tribes
in the Upper Status of barbarism; with traces of it in several of
the remaining branches of the Aryan family. The organization has
been found, or traces of its existence, in the Turanian, Uralian and
Mongolian families; in the Tungusian and Chinese stocks, and in the
Semitic family among the Hebrews. Facts sufficiently numerous and
commanding have been adduced to claim for it an ancient universality in
the human family, as well as a general prevalence through the latter
part of the period of savagery, and throughout the period of barbarism.

The investigation has also arrayed a sufficient body of facts to
demonstrate that this remarkable institution was the origin and
the basis of Ancient Society. It was the first organic principle,
developed through experience, which was able to organize society upon a
definite plan, and hold it in organic unity until it was sufficiently
advanced for the transition into political society. Its antiquity, its
substantial universality and its enduring vitality are sufficiently
shown by its perpetuation upon all the continents to the present time.
The wonderful adaptability of the gentile organization to the wants
of mankind in these several periods and conditions is sufficiently
attested by its prevalence and by its preservation. It has been
identified with the most eventful portion of the experience of mankind.

Whether the gens originates spontaneously in a given condition of
society, and would thus repeat itself in disconnected areas; or whether
it had a single origin, and was propagated from an original center,
through successive migrations, over the earth’s surface, are fair
questions for speculative consideration. The latter hypothesis, with
a simple modification, seems to be the better one, for the following
reasons: We find that two forms of marriage, and two forms of the
family preceded the institution of the gens. It required a peculiar
experience to attain to the second form of marriage and of the family,
and to supplement this experience by the invention of the gens. This
second form of the family was the final result, through natural
selection, of the reduction within narrower limits of a stupendous
conjugal system which enfolded savage man and held him with a powerful
grasp. His final deliverance was too remarkable and too improbable,
as it would seem, to be repeated many different times, and in widely
separated areas. Groups of consanguinei, united for protection and
subsistence, doubtless, existed from the infancy of the human family;
but the gens is a very different body of kindred. It takes a part
and excludes the remainder; it organized this part on the bond of
kin, under a common name, and with common rights and privileges.
Intermarriage in the gens was prohibited to secure the benefits of
marrying out with unrelated persons. This was a vital principle of the
organism as well as one most difficult of establishment. Instead of
a natural and obvious conception, the gens was essentially abstruse;
and, as such, a product of high intelligence for the times in which
it originated. It required long periods of time, after the idea was
developed into life, to bring it to maturity with its uses evolved.
The Polynesians had this punaluan family, but failed of inventing the
gens; the Australians had the same form of the family and possessed
the gens. It originates in the punaluan family, and whatever tribes
had attained to it possessed the elements out of which the gens was
formed. This is the modification of the hypothesis suggested. In
the prior organization, on the basis of sex, the germ of the gens
existed. When the gens had become fully developed in its archaic form
it would propagate itself over immense areas through the superior
powers of an improved stock thus created. Its propagation is more
easily explained than its institution. These considerations tend to
show the improbability of its repeated reproduction in disconnected
areas. On the other hand, its beneficial effects in producing a stock
of savages superior to any then existing upon the earth must be
admitted. When migrations were flights under the law of savage life, or
movements in quest of better areas, such a stock would spread in wave
after wave until it covered the larger part of the earth’s surface.
A consideration of the principal facts now ascertained bearing upon
this question seems to favor the hypothesis of a single origin of the
organization into gentes, unless we go back of this to the Australian
classes, which gave the punaluan family out of which the gens
originated, and regard these classes as the original basis of ancient
society. In this event wherever the classes were established, the gens
existed potentially.

Assuming the unity of origin of mankind, the occupation of the earth
occurred through migrations from an original center. The Asiatic
continent must then be regarded as the cradle-land of the species,
from the greater number of original types of man it contains in
comparison with Europe, Africa and America. It would also follow that
the separation of the Negroes and Australians from the common stem
occurred when society was organized on the basis of sex, and when the
family was punaluan; that the Polynesian migration occurred later, but
with society similarly constituted; and finally, that the Ganowánian
migration to America occurred later still, and after the institution of
the gentes. These inferences are put forward simply as suggestions.

A knowledge of the gens and its attributes, and of the range of its
distribution, is absolutely necessary to a proper comprehension of
Ancient Society. This is the great subject now requiring special
and extended investigation. This society among the ancestors of
civilized nations attained its highest development in the last days
of barbarism. But there were phases of that same society far back
in the anterior ages, which must now be sought among barbarians and
savages in corresponding conditions. The idea of organized society
has been a growth through the entire existence of the human race; its
several phases are logically connected, the one giving birth to the
other in succession; and that form of it we have been contemplating
originated in the gens. No other institution of mankind has held such
an ancient and remarkable relation to the course of human progress.
The real history of mankind is contained in the history of the growth
and development of institutions, of which the gens is but one. It is,
however, the basis of those which have exercised the most material
influence upon human affairs.



PART III.

GROWTH OF THE IDEA OF THE FAMILY.



CHAPTER I.

THE ANCIENT FAMILY.

    FIVE SUCCESSIVE FORMS OF THE FAMILY.—FIRST, THE CONSANGUINE
    FAMILY.—IT CREATED THE MALAYAN SYSTEM OF CONSANGUINITY AND
    AFFINITY.—SECOND, THE PUNALUAN.—IT CREATED THE TURANIAN
    AND GANOWÁNIAN SYSTEM.—THIRD, THE MONOGAMIAN.—IT CREATED
    THE ARYAN, SEMITIC, AND URALIAN SYSTEM.—THE SYNDYASMIAN
    AND PATRIARCHAL FAMILIES INTERMEDIATE.—BOTH FAILED TO
    CREATE A SYSTEM OF CONSANGUINITY.—THESE SYSTEMS NATURAL
    GROWTHS.—TWO ULTIMATE FORMS.—ONE CLASSIFICATORY, THE OTHER
    DESCRIPTIVE.—GENERAL PRINCIPLES OF THESE SYSTEMS.—THEIR
    PERSISTENT MAINTENANCE.


We have been accustomed to regard the monogamian family as the form
which has always existed; but interrupted in exceptional areas by the
patriarchal. Instead of this, the idea of the family has been a growth
through successive stages of development, the monogamian being the
last in its series of forms. It will be my object to show that it was
preceded by more ancient forms which prevailed universally throughout
the period of savagery, through the Older and into the Middle Period
of barbarism; and that neither the monogamian nor the patriarchal can
be traced back of the Later Period of barbarism. They were essentially
modern. Moreover, they were impossible in ancient society, until an
anterior experience under earlier forms in every race of mankind had
prepared the way for their introduction.

Five different and successive forms may now be distinguished, each
having an institution of marriage peculiar to itself. They are the
following:

I. _The Consanguine Family._

It was founded upon the intermarriage of brothers and sisters, own and
collateral, in a group.

II. _The Punaluan Family._

It was founded upon the intermarriage of several sisters, own and
collateral, with each others’ husbands, in a group; the joint husbands
not being necessarily kinsmen of each other. Also, on the intermarriage
of several brothers, own and collateral, with each others’ wives, in a
group; these wives not being necessarily of kin to each other, although
often the case in both instances. In each case the group of men were
conjointly married to the group of women.

III. _The Syndyasmian or Pairing Family._

It was founded upon marriage between single pairs, but without an
exclusive cohabitation. The marriage continued during the pleasure of
the parties.

IV. _The Patriarchal Family._

It was founded upon the marriage of one man with several wives;
followed, in general, by the seclusion of the wives.

V. _The Monogamian Family._

It was founded upon marriage between single pairs, with an exclusive
cohabitation.

Three of these forms, namely, the first, second, and fifth, were
radical; because they were sufficiently general and influential to
create three distinct systems of consanguinity, all of which still
exist in living forms. Conversely, these systems are sufficient of
themselves to prove the antecedent existence of the forms of the
family and of marriage, with which they severally stand connected. The
remaining two, the syndyasmian and the patriarchal, were intermediate,
and not sufficiently influential upon human affairs to create a new,
or modify essentially the then existing system of consanguinity. It
will not be supposed that these types of the family are separated from
each other by sharply defined lines; on the contrary, the first passes
into the second, the second into the third, and the third into the
fifth by insensible gradations. The propositions to be elucidated and
established are, that they have sprung successively one from the other,
and that they represent collectively the growth of the idea of the
family.

In order to explain the rise of these several forms of the family
and of marriage, it will be necessary to present the substance of
the system of consanguinity and affinity which pertains to each.
These systems embody compendious and decisive evidence, free from all
suspicion of design, bearing directly upon the question. Moreover, they
speak with an authority and certainty which leave no room to doubt
the inferences therefrom. But a system of consanguinity is intricate
and perplexing until it is brought into familiarity. It will tax the
reader’s patience to look into the subject far enough to be able to
test the value and weight of the evidence it contains. Having treated
at length, in a previous work, the “Systems of Consanguinity and
Affinity of the Human Family,”[446] I shall confine the statements
herein to the material facts, reduced to the lowest number consistent
with intelligibility, making reference to the other work for fuller
details, and for the general Tables. The importance of the main
proposition as a part of the history of man, namely, that the family
has been a growth through several successive forms, is a commanding
reason for the presentation and study of these systems, if they can in
truth establish the fact. It will require this and the four succeeding
chapters to make a brief general exhibition of the proof.

The most primitive system of consanguinity yet discovered is found
among the Polynesians, of which the Hawaiian will be used as typical. I
have called it the Malayan system. Under it all consanguinei, near and
remote, fall within some one of the following relationships; namely,
parent, child, grandparent, grandchild, brother, and sister. No other
blood relationships are recognized. Beside these are the marriage
relationships. This system of consanguinity came in with the first form
of the family, the consanguine, and contains the principal evidence of
its ancient existence. It may seem a narrow basis for so important an
inference: but if we are justified in assuming that each relationship
as recognized was the one which actually existed, the inference is
fully sustained. This system prevailed very generally in Polynesia,
although the family among them had passed out of the consanguine into
the punaluan. It remained unchanged because no motive sufficiently
strong, and no alteration of institutions sufficiently radical had
occurred to produce its modification. Intermarriage between brothers
and sisters had not entirely disappeared from the Sandwich Islands when
the American missions, about fifty years ago, were established among
them. Of the ancient general prevalence of this system of consanguinity
over Asia there can be no doubt, because it is the basis of the
Turanian system still prevalent in Asia. It also underlies the Chinese.

In course of time, a second great system of consanguinity, the
Turanian, supervened upon the first, and spread over a large part
of the earth’s surface. It was universal among the North American
aborigines, and has been traced sufficiently among those of South
America to render probable its equally universal prevalence among
them. Traces of it have been found in parts of Africa; but the system
of the African tribes in general approaches nearer the Malayan. It
still prevails in South India among the Hindus who speak dialects of
the Dravidian language, and also, in a modified form, in North India,
among the Hindus who speak dialects of the Gaura language. It also
prevails in Australia in a partially developed state, where it seems
to have originated either in the organization into classes, or in the
incipient organization into gentes, which led to the same result.
In the principal tribes of the Turanian and Ganowánian families, it
owes its origin to punaluan marriage in the group and to the gentile
organization, the latter of which tended to repress consanguine
marriages. It has been shown how this was accomplished by the
prohibition of intermarriage in the gens, which permanently excluded
own brothers and sisters from the marriage relation. When the Turanian
system of consanguinity came in, the form of the family was punaluan.
This is proven by the fact that punaluan marriage in the group explains
the principal relationships under the system; showing them to be those
which would actually exist in virtue of this form of marriage. Through
the logic of the facts we are enabled to show that the punaluan family
was once as wide-spread as the Turanian system of consanguinity. To
the organization into gentes and the punaluan family, the Turanian
system of consanguinity must be ascribed. It will be seen in the sequel
that this system was formed out of the Malayan, by changing those
relationships only which resulted from the previous intermarriage of
brothers and sisters, own and collateral, and which were, in fact,
changed by the gentes; thus proving the direct connection between them.
The powerful influence of the gentile organization upon society, and
particularly upon the punaluan group, is demonstrated by this change of
systems.

The Turanian system is simply stupendous. It recognizes all the
relationships known under the Aryan system, besides an additional
number unnoticed by the latter. Consanguinei, near and remote, are
classified into categories; and are traced, by means peculiar to
the system, far beyond the ordinary range of the Aryan system. In
familiar and in formal salutation, the people address each other by
the term of relationship, and never by the personal name, which tends
to spread abroad a knowledge of the system as well as to preserve, by
constant recognition, the relationship of the most distant kindred.
Where no relationship exists, the form of salutation is simply “my
friend.” No other system of consanguinity found among men approaches
it in elaborateness of discrimination or in the extent of special
characteristics.

When the American aborigines were discovered, the family among them
had passed out of the punaluan into the syndyasmian form; so that
the relationships recognized by the system of consanguinity were not
those, in a number of cases, which actually existed in the syndyasmian
family. It was an exact repetition of what had occurred under the
Malayan system, where the family had passed out of the consanguine
into the punaluan, the system of consanguinity remaining unchanged;
so that while the relationships given in the Malayan system were
those which actually existed in the consanguine family, they were
untrue to a part of those in the punaluan family. In like manner,
while the relationships given in the Turanian system are those which
actually existed in the punaluan family, they were untrue to a part
of those in the syndyasmian. The form of the family advances faster
of necessity than systems of consanguinity, which follow to record
the family relationships. As the establishment of the punaluan family
did not furnish adequate motives to reform the Malayan system, so
the growth of the syndyasmian family did not supply adequate motives
to reform the Turanian. It required an institution as great as the
gentile organization to change the Malayan system into the Turanian;
and it required an institution as great as property in the concrete,
with its rights of ownership and of inheritance, together with the
monogamian family which it created, to overthrow the Turanian system of
consanguinity and substitute the Aryan.

In further course of time a third great system of consanguinity came
in, which may be called, at pleasure, the Aryan, Semitic, or Uralian,
and probably superseded a prior Turanian system among the principal
nations, who afterwards attained civilization. It is the system which
defines the relationships in the monogamian family. This system was not
based upon the Turanian, as the latter was upon the Malayan; but it
superseded among civilized nations a previous Turanian system, as can
be shown by other proofs.

The last four forms of the family have existed within the historical
period; but the first, the consanguine, has disappeared. Its ancient
existence, however, can be deduced from the Malayan system of
consanguinity. We have then three radical forms of the family, which
represent three great and essentially different conditions of life,
with three different and well-marked systems of consanguinity,
sufficient to prove the existence of these families, if they contained
the only proofs remaining. This affirmation will serve to draw
attention to the singular permanence and persistency of systems of
consanguinity, and to the value of the evidence they embody with
respect to the condition of ancient society.

Each of these families ran a long course in the tribes of mankind, with
a period of infancy, of maturity, and of decadence. The monogamian
family owes its origin to property, as the syndyasmian, which contained
its germ, owed its origin to the gens. When the Grecian tribes first
came under historical notice, the monogamian family existed; but it
did not become completely established until positive legislation
had determined its status and its rights. The growth of the idea of
property in the human mind, through its creation and enjoyment, and
especially through the settlement of legal rights with respect to
its inheritance, are intimately connected with the establishment of
this form of the family. Property became sufficiently powerful in its
influence to touch the organic structure of society. Certainty with
respect to the paternity of children would now have a significance
unknown in previous conditions. Marriage between single pairs had
existed from the Older Period of barbarism, under the form of pairing
during the pleasure of the parties. It had tended to grow more stable
as ancient society advanced, with the improvement of institutions, and
with the progress of inventions and discoveries into higher successive
conditions; but the essential element of the monogamian family, an
exclusive cohabitation, was still wanting. Man far back in barbarism
began to exact fidelity from the wife, under savage penalties, but
he claimed exemption for himself. The obligation is necessarily
reciprocal, and its performance correlative. Among the Homeric Greeks,
the condition of woman in the family relation was one of isolation and
marital domination, with imperfect rights and excessive inequality.
A comparison of the Grecian family, at successive epochs, from the
Homeric age to that of Pericles, shows a sensible improvement, with
its gradual settlement into a defined institution. The modern family
is an unquestionable improvement upon that of the Greeks and Romans;
because woman has gained immensely in social position. From standing
in the relation of a daughter to her husband, as among the Greeks
and Romans, she has drawn nearer to an equality in dignity and in
acknowledged personal rights. We have a record of the monogamian
family, running back nearly three thousand years, during which, it
may be claimed, there has been a gradual but continuous improvement
in its character. It is destined to progress still further, until the
equality of the sexes is acknowledged, and the equities of the marriage
relation are completely recognized. We have similar evidence, though
not so perfect, of the progressive improvement of the syndyasmian
family, which, commencing in a low type, ended in the monogamian. These
facts should be held in remembrance, because they are essential in this
discussion.

In previous chapters attention has been called to the stupendous
conjugal system which fastened itself upon mankind in the infancy of
their existence, and followed them down to civilization; although
steadily losing ground with the progressive improvement of society. The
ratio of human progress may be measured to some extent by the degree
of the reduction of this system through the moral elements of society
arrayed against it. Each successive form of the family and of marriage
is a significant registration of this reduction. After it was reduced
to zero, and not until then, was the monogamian family possible. This
family can be traced far back in the Later Period of barbarism, where
it disappears in the syndyasmian.

Some impression is thus gained of the ages which elapsed while these
two forms of the family were running their courses of growth and
development. But the creation of five successive forms of the family,
each differing from the other, and belonging to conditions of society
entirely dissimilar, augments our conception of the length of the
periods during which the idea of the family was developed from the
consanguine, through intermediate forms, into the still advancing
monogamian. No institution of mankind has had a more remarkable or
more eventful history, or embodies the results of a more prolonged
and diversified experience. It required the highest mental and moral
efforts through numberless ages of time to maintain its existence and
carry it through its several stages into its present form.

Marriage passed from the punaluan through the syndyasmian into the
monogamian form without any material change in the Turanian system of
consanguinity. This system, which records the relationships in punaluan
families, remained substantially unchanged until the establishment of
the monogamian family, when it became almost totally untrue to the
nature of descents, and even a scandal upon monogamy. To illustrate:
Under the Malayan system a man calls his brother’s son his son, because
his brother’s wife is his wife as well as his brother’s; and his
sister’s son is also his son because his sister is his wife. Under
the Turanian system his brother’s son is still his son, and for the
same reason, but his sister’s son is now his nephew, because under
the gentile organization his sister has ceased to be his wife. Among
the Iroquois, where the family is syndyasmian, a man still calls his
brother’s son his son, although his brother’s wife has ceased to be his
wife; and so with a large number of relationships equally inconsistent
with the existing form of marriage. The system has survived the usages
in which it originated, and still maintains itself among them, although
untrue in the main, to descents as they now exist. No motive adequate
to the overthrow of a great and ancient system of consanguinity had
arisen. Monogamy when it appeared furnished that motive to the Aryan
nations as they drew near to civilization. It assured the paternity of
children and the legitimacy of heirs. A reformation of the Turanian
system to accord with monogamian descents was impossible. It was
false to monogamy through and through. A remedy, however, existed, at
once simple and complete. The Turanian system was dropped, and the
descriptive method, which the Turanian tribes always employed when
they wished to make a given relationship specific, was substituted in
its place. They fell back upon the bare facts of consanguinity and
described the relationship of each person by a combination of the
primary terms. Thus, they said brother’s son, brother’s grandson;
father’s brother, and father’s brother’s son. Each phrase described a
person, leaving the relationship a matter of implication. Such was the
system of the Aryan nations, as we find it in its most ancient form
among the Grecian, Latin, Sanskritic, Germanic, and Celtic tribes;
and also in the Semitic, as witness the Hebrew Scripture genealogies.
Traces of the Turanian system, some of which have been referred to,
remained among the Aryan and Semitic nations down to the historical
period; but it was essentially uprooted, and the descriptive system
substituted in its place.

To illustrate and confirm these several propositions it will be
necessary to take up, in the order of their origination, these three
systems and the three radical forms of the family, which appeared in
connection with them respectively. They mutually interpret each other.

A system of consanguinity considered in itself is of but little
importance. Limited in the number of ideas it embodies, and resting
apparently upon simple suggestions, it would seem incapable of
affording useful information, and much less of throwing light upon
the early condition of mankind. Such, at least, would be the natural
conclusion when the relationships of a group of kindred are considered
in the abstract. But when the system of many tribes is compared, and
it is seen to rank as a domestic institution, and to have transmitted
itself through immensely protracted periods of time, it assumes a
very different aspect. Three such systems, one succeeding the other,
represent the entire growth of the family from the consanguine to the
monogamian. Since we have a right to suppose that each one expresses
the actual relationships which existed in the family at the time of its
establishment, it reveals, in turn, the form of marriage and of the
family which then prevailed, although both may have advanced into a
higher stage while the system of consanguinity remained unchanged.

It will be noticed, further, that these systems are natural growths
with the progress of society from a lower into a higher condition, the
change in each case being marked by the appearance of some institution
affecting deeply the constitution of society. The relationship of
mother and child, of brother and sister, and of grandmother and
grandchild have been ascertainable in all ages with entire certainty;
but those of father and child, and of grandfather and grandchild were
not ascertainable with certainty until monogamy contributed the highest
assurance attainable. A number of persons would stand in each of these
relations at the same time as equally probable when marriage was in the
group. In the rudest conditions of ancient society these relationships
would be perceived, both the actual and the probable, and terms would
be invented to express them. A system of consanguinity would result
in time from the continued application of these terms to persons thus
formed into a group of kindred. But the form of the system, as before
stated, would depend upon the form of marriage. Where marriages were
between brothers and sisters, own and collateral, in the group, the
family would be consanguine, and the system of consanguinity, Malayan.
Where marriages were between several sisters with each other’s husbands
in a group, and between several brothers with each other’s wives in a
group, the family would be punaluan, and the system of consanguinity
Turanian; and where marriage was between single pairs, with an
exclusive cohabitation, the family would be monogamian, and the system
of consanguinity would be Aryan. Consequently the three systems are
founded upon three forms of marriage; and they seek to express, as
near as the fact could be known, the actual relationship which existed
between persons under these forms of marriage respectively. It will be
seen, therefore, that they do not rest upon nature, but upon marriage;
not upon fictitious considerations, but upon fact; and that each in
its turn is a logical as well as truthful system. The evidence they
contain is of the highest value, as well as of the most suggestive
character. It reveals the condition of ancient society in the plainest
manner with unerring directness.

These systems resolve themselves into two ultimate forms, fundamentally
distinct. One of these is _classificatory_, and the other
_descriptive_. Under the first, consanguinei are never described, but
are classified into categories, irrespective of their nearness or
remoteness in degree to _Ego_; and the same term of relationship is
applied to all the persons in the same category. Thus my own brothers,
and the sons of my father’s brothers are all alike my brothers; my own
sisters, and the daughters of my mother’s sisters are all alike my
sisters; such is the classification under both the Malayan and Turanian
systems. In the second case consanguinei are described either by the
primary terms of relationship or a combination of these terms, thus
making the relationship of each person specific. Thus we say brother’s
son, father’s brother, and father’s brother’s son. Such was the system
of the Aryan, Semitic, and Uralian families, which came in with
monogamy. A small amount of classification was subsequently introduced
by the invention of common terms; but the earliest form of the system,
of which the Erse and Scandinavian are typical, was purely descriptive,
as illustrated by the above examples. The radical difference between
the two systems resulted from plural marriages in the group in one
case, and from single marriages between single pairs in the other.

While the descriptive system is the same in the Aryan, Semitic, and
Uralian families, the classificatory has two distinct forms. First, the
Malayan, which is the oldest in point of time; and second, the Turanian
and Ganowánian, which are essentially alike and were formed by the
modification of a previous Malayan system.

A brief reference to our own system of consanguinity will bring into
notice the principles which underlie all systems.

Relationships are of two kinds: First, by consanguinity or blood;
second, by affinity or marriage. Consanguinity is also of two kinds,
lineal and collateral. Lineal consanguinity is the connection which
subsists among persons of whom one is descended from the other.
Collateral consanguinity is the connection which exists between persons
who are descended from common ancestors, but not from each other.
Marriage relationships exist by custom.

Not to enter too specially into the subject, it may be stated generally
that in every system of consanguinity, where marriage between single
pairs exists, there must be a lineal and several collateral lines, the
latter diverging from the former. Each person is the centre of a group
of kindred, the _Ego_ from whom the degree of relationship of each
person is reckoned, and to whom the relationship returns. His position
is necessarily in the lineal line, and that line is vertical. Upon
it may be inscribed, above and below him, his several ancestors and
descendants in a direct series from father to son, and these persons
together will constitute his right lineal male line. Out of this trunk
line emerge the several collateral lines, male and female, which are
numbered outwardly. It will be sufficient for a perfect knowledge of
the system to recognize the main lineal line, and a single male and
female branch of the first five collateral lines, including those on
the father’s side, and on the mother’s side, and proceeding in each
case from the parent to one only of his or her children, although it
will include but a small portion of the kindred of _Ego_, either in the
ascending or descending series. An attempt to follow all the divisions
and branches of the several collateral lines, which increase in number
in the ascending series in a geometrical ratio, would not render the
system more intelligible.

The first collateral line, male, consists of my brother and his
descendants; and the first, female, of my sister and her descendants.
The second collateral line, male, on the father’s side, consists of
my father’s brother and his descendants; and the second, female, of
my father’s sister and her descendants: the second, male, on the
mother’s side, is composed of my mother’s brother and his descendants;
and the second, female, of my mother’s sister and her descendants.
The third collateral line, male, on the father’s side, consists of my
grandfather’s brother and his descendants; and the third, female, of my
grandfather’s sister and her descendants: on the mother’s side the same
line, in its male and female branches, is composed of my grandmother’s
brother and sister and their descendants respectively. It will be
noticed, in the last case, that we have turned out of the lineal
line on the father’s side into that on the mother’s side. The fourth
collateral line, male and female, commences with great-grandfather’s
brother and sister, and great-grandmother’s brother and sister: and the
fifth collateral line, male and female, with great-great-grandfather’s
brother and sister; and with great-great-grandmother’s brother and
sister, and each line and branch is run out in the same manner as the
third. These five lines, with the lineal, embrace the great body of our
kindred, who are within the range of practical recognition.

An additional explanation of these several lines is required. If I have
several brothers and sisters, they, with their descendants, constitute
as many lines, each independent of the other, as I have brothers and
sisters; but altogether they form my first collateral line in two
branches, a male and a female. In like manner, the several brothers
and sisters of my father, and of my mother, with their respective
descendants, make up as many lines, each independent of the other, as
there are brothers and sisters; but they all unite to form the second
collateral line in two divisions, that on the father’s side, and that
on the mother’s side; and in four principal branches, two male, and two
female. If the third collateral line were run out fully, in its several
branches, it would give four general divisions of ancestors, and eight
principal branches; and the number of each would increase in the same
ratio in each successive collateral line.

With such a mass of divisions and branches, embracing such a multitude
of consanguinei, it will be seen at once that a method of arrangement
and of description which maintained each distinct and rendered the
whole intelligible would be no ordinary achievement. This task was
perfectly accomplished by the Roman civilians, whose method has been
adopted by the principal European nations, and is so entirely simple as
to elicit admiration.[447] The development of the nomenclature to the
requisite extent must have been so extremely difficult that it would
probably never have occurred except under the stimulus of an urgent
necessity, namely, the need of a code of descents to regulate the
inheritance of property.

To render the new form attainable, it was necessary to discriminate
the relationships of uncle and aunt on the father’s side and on the
mother’s side by concrete terms, an achievement made in a few only of
the languages of mankind. These terms finally appeared among the Romans
in _patruus_ and _amita_, for uncle and aunt on the father’s side,
and in _avunculus_ and _matertera_ for the same on the mother’s side.
After these were invented, the improved Roman method of describing
consanguinei became established.[448] It has been adopted, in its
essential features, by the several branches of the Aryan family, with
the exception of the Erse, the Scandinavian, and the Slavonic.

The Aryan system necessarily took the descriptive form when the
Turanian was abandoned, as in the Erse. Every relationship in the
lineal and first five collateral lines, to the number of one hundred
and more, stands independent, requiring as many descriptive phases, or
the gradual invention of common terms.

It will be noticed that the two radical forms—the classificatory and
the descriptive—yield nearly the exact line of demarkation between
the barbarous and civilized nations. Such a result might have been
predicted from the law of progress revealed by these several forms of
marriage and of the family.

Systems of consanguinity are neither adopted, modified, nor laid
aside at pleasure. They are identified in their origin with organic
movements of society which produced a great change of condition. When
a particular form had come into general use, with its nomenclature
invented and its methods settled, it would, from the nature of the
case, be very slow to change. Every human being is the centre of a
group of kindred, and therefore every person is compelled to use and
to understand the prevailing system. A change in any one of these
relationships would be extremely difficult. This tendency to permanence
is increased by the fact that these systems exist by custom rather
than legal enactment, as growths rather than artificial creations, and
therefore a motive to change must be as universal as the usage. While
every person is a party to the system, the channel of its transmission
is the blood. Powerful influences thus existed to perpetuate the system
long after the conditions under which each originated had been modified
or had altogether disappeared. This element of permanence gives
certainty to conclusions drawn from the facts, and has preserved and
brought forward a record of ancient society which otherwise would have
been entirely lost to human knowledge.

It will not be supposed that a system so elaborate as the Turanian
could be maintained in different nations and families of mankind in
absolute identicalness. Divergence in minor particulars is found,
but the radical features are, in the main, constant. The system of
consanguinity of the Tamil people, of South India, and that of the
Seneca-Iroquois, of New York, are still identical through two hundred
relationships; an application of natural logic to the facts of the
social condition without a parallel in the history of the human mind.
There is also a modified form of the system, which stands alone and
tells its own story. It is that of the Hindi, Bengali, Marâthi and
other people of North India, formed by a combination of the Aryan and
Turanian systems. A civilized people, the Brahmins, coalesced with a
barbarous stock, and lost their language in the new vernaculars named,
which retain the grammatical structure of the aboriginal speech, to
which the Sanskrit gave ninety per cent. of its vocables. It brought
their two systems of consanguinity into collision, one founded upon
monogamy or syndyasmy, and the other upon plural marriages in the
group, resulting in a mixed system. The aborigines, who preponderated
in number, impressed upon it a Turanian character, while the Sanskrit
element introduced such modifications as saved the monogamian family
from reproach. The Slavonic stock seems to have been derived from this
intermixture of races. A system of consanguinity which exhibits but two
phases through the periods of savagery and of barbarism and projects a
third but modified form far into the period of civilization, manifests
an element of permanence calculated to arrest attention.

It will not be necessary to consider the patriarchal family founded
upon polygamy. From its limited prevalence it made but little
impression upon human affairs.

The house life of savages and barbarians has not been studied with
the attention the subject deserves. Among the Indian tribes of North
America the family was syndyasmian; but they lived generally in
joint-tenement houses and practiced communism within the household. As
we descend the scale in the direction of the punaluan and consanguine
families, the household group becomes larger, with more persons crowded
together in the same apartment. The coast tribes in Venezuela, among
whom the family seems to have been punaluan, are represented by the
discoverers as living in bell-shaped houses, each containing a hundred
and sixty persons.[449] Husbands and wives lived together in a group in
the same house, and generally in the same apartment. The inference is
reasonable that this mode of house life was very general in savagery.

An explanation of the origin of these systems of consanguinity and
affinity will be offered in succeeding chapters. They will be grounded
upon the forms of marriage and of the family which produced them, the
existence of these forms being assumed. If a satisfactory explanation
of each system is thus obtained, the antecedent existence of each
form of marriage and of the family may be deduced from the system it
explains. In a final chapter an attempt will be made to articulate in
a sequence the principal institutions which have contributed to the
growth of the family through successive forms. Our knowledge of the
early condition of mankind is still so limited that we must take the
best indications attainable. The sequence to be presented is, in part,
hypothetical; but it is sustained by a sufficient body of evidence to
commend it to consideration. Its complete establishment must be left to
the results of future ethnological investigations.



CHAPTER II.

THE CONSANGUINE FAMILY.

    FORMER EXISTENCE OF THIS FAMILY.—PROVED BY MALAYAN SYSTEM OF
    CONSANGUINITY.—HAWAIIAN SYSTEM USED AS TYPICAL.—FIVE GRADES OF
    RELATIONS.—DETAILS OF SYSTEM.—EXPLAINED BY THE INTERMARRIAGE
    OF BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN A GROUP.—EARLY STATE OF SOCIETY
    IN THE SANDWICH ISLANDS.—NINE GRADES OF RELATIONS OF THE
    CHINESE.—IDENTICAL IN PRINCIPLE WITH THE HAWAIIAN.—FIVE GRADES
    OF RELATIONS IN IDEAL REPUBLIC OF PLATO.—TABLE OF MALAYAN
    SYSTEM OF CONSANGUINITY AND AFFINITY.


The existence of the Consanguine family must be proved by other
evidence than the production of the family itself. As the first and
most ancient form of the institution, it has ceased to exist even among
the lowest tribes of savages. It belongs to a condition of society out
of which the least advanced portion of the human race have emerged.
Single instances of the marriage of a brother and sister in barbarous
and even in civilized nations have occurred within the historical
period; but this is very different from the intermarriage of a number
of them in a group, in a state of society in which such marriages
predominated and formed the basis of a social system. There are tribes
of savages in the Polynesian and Papuan Islands, and in Australia,
seemingly not far removed from the primitive state; but they have
advanced beyond the condition the consanguine family implies. Where,
then, it may be asked, is the evidence that such a family ever existed
among mankind? Whatever proof is adduced must be conclusive, otherwise
the proposition is not established. It is found in a system of
consanguinity and affinity which has outlived for unnumbered centuries
the marriage customs in which it originated, and which remains to
attest the fact that such a family existed when the system was formed.

That system is the Malayan. It defines the relationships that would
exist in a consanguine family; and it demands the existence of such a
family to account for its own existence. Moreover, it proves with moral
certainty the existence of a consanguine family when the system was
formed.

This system, which is the most archaic yet discovered, will now be
taken up for the purpose of showing, from its relationships, the
principal facts stated. This family, also, is the most archaic form of
the institution of which any knowledge remains.

Such a remarkable record of the condition of ancient society would not
have been preserved to the present time but for the singular permanence
of systems of consanguinity. The Aryan system, for example, has stood
near three thousand years without radical change, and would endure a
hundred thousand years in the future, provided the monogamian family,
whose relationships it defines, should so long remain. It describes the
relationships which actually exist under monogamy, and is therefore
incapable of change, so long as the family remains as at present
constituted. If a new form of the family should appear among Aryan
nations, it would not affect the present system of consanguinity until
after it became universal; and while in that case it might modify the
system in some particulars, it would not overthrow it, unless the new
family were radically different from the monogamian. It was precisely
the same with its immediate predecessor, the Turanian system, and
before that with the Malayan, the predecessor of the Turanian in the
order of derivative growth. An antiquity of unknown duration may be
assigned to the Malayan system which came in with the consanguine
family, remained for an indefinite period after the punaluan family
appeared, and seems to have been displaced in other tribes by the
Turanian, with the establishment of the organization into gentes.

The inhabitants of Polynesia are included in the Malayan family.
Their system of consanguinity has been called the Malayan, although
the Malays proper have modified their own in some particulars. Among
the Hawaiians and other Polynesian tribes there still exists in
daily use a system of consanguinity which is given in the Table,
and may be pronounced the oldest known among mankind. The Hawaiian
and Rotuman[450] forms are used as typical of the system. It is the
simplest, and therefore the oldest form, of the classificatory system,
and reveals the primitive form on which the Turanian and Ganowánian
were afterwards engrafted.

It is evident that the Malayan could not have been derived from any
existing system, because there is none, of which any conception can be
formed, more elementary. The only blood relationships recognized are
the primary, which are five in number, without distinguishing sex. All
consanguinei, near and remote, are classified under these relationships
into five categories. Thus, myself, my brothers and sisters, and my
first, second, third, and more remote male and female cousins, are
the first grade or category. All these, without distinction, are my
brothers and sisters. The word _cousin_ is here used in our sense, the
relationship being unknown in Polynesia. My father and mother, together
with their brothers and sisters, and their first, second, and more
remote cousins, are the second grade. All these, without distinction,
are my parents. My grandfathers and grandmothers, on the father’s side
and on the mother’s side, with their brothers and sisters, and their
several cousins, are the third grade. All these are my grandparents.
Below me, my sons and daughters, with their several cousins, as before,
are the fourth grade. All these, without distinction, are my children.
My grandsons and granddaughters, with their several cousins, are the
fifth grade. All these in like manner are my grand-children. Moreover,
all the individuals of the same grade are brothers and sisters to each
other. In this manner all the possible kindred of any given person
are brought into five categories; each person applying to every other
person in the same category with himself or herself the same term
of relationship. Particular attention is invited to the five grades
of relations in the Malayan system, because the same classification
appears in the “Nine Grades of Relations” of the Chinese, which are
extended so as to include two additional ancestors and two additional
descendants, as will elsewhere be shown. A fundamental connection
between the two systems is thus discovered.

There are terms in Hawaiian for grandparent, _Kupŭnă_; for parent,
_Mäkŭa_; for child, _Kaikee_; and for grandchild, _Moopŭnă_. Gender
is expressed by adding the terms _Käna_, for male, and _Wäheena_,
for female; thus, _Kupŭnă Käna_ = grandparent male, and _Kupŭnă
Wäheena_, grandparent female. They are equivalent to grandfather and
grandmother, and express these relationships in the concrete. Ancestors
and descendants, above and below those named, are distinguished
numerically, as first, second, third, when it is necessary to be
specific; but in common usage _Kupŭnă_ is applied to all persons
above grandparent, and _Moopŭnă_ is applied to all descendants below
grandchild.

The relationships of brother and sister are conceived in the twofold
form of elder and younger, and separate terms are applied to each; but
it is not carried out with entire completeness. Thus, in Hawaiian, from
which the illustrations will be taken, we have:

    Elder Brother, Male Speaking, _Kaikŭaäna_.    Female Speaking, _Kaikŭnäna_.
    Younger Brother,  ”    ”      _Kaikaina_.       ”          ”   _Kaikŭnäna_.
    Elder Sister,     ”    ”      _Kaikŭwäheena_.   ”          ”   _Kaikŭaäna_.
    Younger Sister,   ”    ”      _Kaikŭwäheena_.   ”          ”   _Kaikaina_.[451]

It will be observed that a man calls his elder brother _Kaikŭaäna_,
and that a woman calls her elder sister the same; that a man calls
his younger brother _Kaikaina_, and a woman calls her younger sister
the same: hence these terms are in common gender, and suggest the
same idea found in the Karen system, namely, that of predecessor
and successor in birth.[452] A single term is used by the males for
elder and younger sister, and a single term by the females for elder
and younger brother. It thus appears that while a man’s brothers are
classified into elder and younger, his sisters are not; and, while a
woman’s sisters are classified into elder and younger, her brothers are
not. A double set of terms are thus developed, one of which is used by
the males and the other by the females, a peculiarity which reappears
in the system of a number of Polynesian tribes.[453] Among savage and
barbarous tribes the relationships of brother and sister are seldom
conceived in the abstract.

The substance of the system is contained in the five categories of
consanguinei; but there are special features to be noticed which will
require the presentation in detail of the first three collateral
lines. After these are shown the connection of the system with the
intermarriage of brothers and sisters, own and collateral, in a group,
will appear in the relationships themselves.

First collateral line. In the male branch, with myself a male, the
children of my brother, speaking as a Hawaiian, are my sons and
daughters, each of them calling me father; and the children of the
latter are my grandchildren, each of them calling me grandfather.

In the female branch my sister’s children are my sons and daughters,
each of them calling me father; and their children are my
grandchildren, each of them calling me grandfather. With myself a
female, the relationships of the persons above named are the same in
both branches, with corresponding changes for sex.

The husbands and wives of these several sons and daughters are my
sons-in-law and daughters-in-law; the terms being used in common
gender, and having the terms for male and female added to each
respectively.

Second collateral line. In the male branch on the father’s side my
father’s brother is my father, and calls me his son; his children are
my brothers and sisters, elder or younger; their children are my sons
and daughters; and the children of the latter are my grandchildren,
each of them in the preceding and succeeding cases applying to me the
proper correlative. My father’s sister is my mother; her children are
my brothers and sisters, elder or younger; their children are my sons
and daughters; and the children of the latter are my grandchildren.

In the same line on the mother’s side my mother’s brother is my father;
his children are my brothers and sisters; their children are my sons
and daughters; and the children of the latter are my grandchildren. My
mother’s sister is my mother; her children are my brothers and sisters;
their children are my sons and daughters; and the children of the
latter are my grandchildren. The relationships of the persons named in
all the branches of this and the succeeding lines are the same with
myself a female.

The wives of these several brothers, own and collateral, are my wives
as well as theirs. When addressing either one of them, I call her
my wife, employing the usual term to express that connection. The
husbands of these several women, jointly such with myself, are my
brothers-in-law. With myself a female the husbands of my several
sisters, own and collateral, are my husbands as well as theirs. When
addressing either of them, I use the common term for husband. The wives
of these several husbands, who are jointly such with myself, are my
sisters-in-law.

Third collateral line. In the male branch of this line on the father’s
side, my grandfather’s brother is my grandfather; his children are my
father’s and mother’s; their children are my brothers and sisters,
elder or younger; the children of the latter are my sons and daughters;
and their children are my grandchildren. My grandfather’s sister is
my grandmother; and her children and descendants follow in the same
relationships as in the last case.

In the same line on the mother’s side, my grandmother’s brother is
my grandfather; his sister is my grandmother; and their respective
children and descendants fall into the same categories as those in the
first branch of this line.

The marriage relationships are the same in this as in the second
collateral line, thus increasing largely the number united in the bonds
of marriage.

As far as consanguinei can be traced in the more remote collateral
lines, the system, which is all-embracing, is the same in its
classifications. Thus, my great-grandfather in the fourth collateral
line is my grandfather; his son is my grandfather also; the son of the
latter is my father; his son is my brother, elder or younger; and his
son and grandson are my son and grandson.

It will be observed that the several collateral lines are brought into
and merged in the lineal line, ascending as well as descending; so that
the ancestors and descendants of my collateral brothers and sisters
become mine as well as theirs. This is one of the characteristics of
the classificatory system. None of the kindred are lost.

From the simplicity of the system it may be seen how readily the
relationships of consanguinei are known and recognized, and how a
knowledge of them is preserved from generation to generation. A single
rule furnishes an illustration: the children of brothers are themselves
brothers and sisters; the children of the latter are brothers and
sisters; and so downward indefinitely. It is the same with the children
and descendants of sisters, and of brothers and sisters.

All the members of each grade are reduced to the same level in their
relationships, without regard to nearness or remoteness in numerical
degrees; those in each grade standing to _Ego_ in an identical
relationship. It follows, also, that knowledge of the numerical
degrees formed an integral part of the Hawaiian system, without which
the proper grade of each person could not be known. The simple and
distinctive character of the system will arrest attention, pointing
with such directness as it does, to the intermarriage of brothers and
sisters, own and collateral, in a group, as the source from whence it
sprung.

Poverty of language or indifference to relationships exercised no
influence whatever upon the formation of the system, as will appear in
the sequel.

The system, as here detailed, is found in other Polynesian tribes
besides the Hawaiians and Rotumans, as among the Marquesas Islanders,
and the Maoris of New Zealand. It prevails, also, among the Samoans,
Kusaiens, and King’s Mill Islanders of Micronesia,[454] and without a
doubt in every inhabited island of the Pacific, except where it verges
upon the Turanian.

From this system the antecedent existence of the consanguine family,
with the kind of marriage appertaining thereto, is plainly deducible.
Presumptively it is a natural and real system, expressing the
relationships which actually existed when the system was formed, as
near as the parentage of children could be known. The usages with
respect to marriage which then prevailed may not prevail at the present
time. To sustain the deduction it is not necessary that they should.
Systems of consanguinity, as before stated, are found to remain
substantially unchanged and in full vigor long after the marriage
customs in which they originated have in part or wholly passed away.
The small number of independent systems of consanguinity created during
the extended period of human experience is sufficient proof of their
permanence. They are found not to change except in connection with
great epochs of progress. For the purpose of explaining the origin of
the Malayan system, from the nature of descents, we are at liberty to
assume the antecedent intermarriage of own and collateral brothers
and sisters in a group; and if it is then found that the principal
relationships recognized are those that would actually exist under this
form of marriage, then the system itself becomes evidence conclusive
of the existence of such marriages. It is plainly inferable that the
system originated in plural marriages of consanguinei, including own
brothers and sisters; in fact commenced with the intermarriage of the
latter, and gradually enfolded the collateral brothers and sisters as
the range of the conjugal system widened. In course of time the evils
of the first form of marriage came to be perceived, leading, if not to
its direct abolition, to a preference for wives beyond this degree.
Among the Australians it was permanently abolished by the organization
into classes, and more widely among the Turanian tribes by the
organization into gentes. It is impossible to explain the system as a
natural growth upon any other hypothesis than the one named, since this
form of marriage alone can furnish a key to its interpretation. In the
consanguine family, thus constituted, the husbands lived in polygyny,
and the wives in polyandry, which are seen to be as ancient as human
society. Such a family was neither unnatural nor remarkable. It would
be difficult to show any other possible beginning of the family in the
primitive period. Its long continuance in a partial form among the
tribes of mankind is the greater cause for surprise; for all traces
of it had not disappeared among the Hawaiians at the epoch of their
discovery.

The explanation of the origin of the Malayan system given in this
chapter, and of the Turanian and Ganowánian given in the next,
have been questioned and denied by Mr. John F. McLennan, author of
“Primitive Marriage.” I see no occasion, however, to modify the views
herein presented, which are the same substantially as those given in
“Systems of Consanguinity,” etc. But I ask the attention of the reader
to the interpretation here repeated, and to a note at the end of
Chapter VI, in which Mr. McLennan’s objections are considered.

If the recognized relationships in the Malayan system are now tested
by this form of marriage, it will be found that they rest upon the
intermarriage of own and collateral brothers and sisters in a group.

It should be remembered that the relationships which grow out of the
family organization are of two kinds: those of blood determined by
descents, and those of affinity determined by marriage. Since in the
consanguine family there are two distinct groups of persons, one of
fathers and one of mothers, the affiliation of the children to both
groups would be so strong that the distinction between relationships by
blood and by affinity would not be recognized in the system in every
case.

I. All the children of my several brothers, myself a male, are my sons
and daughters.

Reason: Speaking as a Hawaiian, all the wives of my several brothers
are my wives as well as theirs. As it would be impossible for me to
distinguish my own children from those of my brothers, if I call any
one my child, I must call them all my children. One is as likely to be
mine as another.

II. All the grandchildren of my several brothers are my grandchildren.

Reason: They are the children of my sons and daughters.

III. With myself a female the foregoing relationships are the same.

This is purely a question of relationship by marriage. My several
brothers being my husbands, their children by other wives would be my
step-children, which relationship being unrecognized, they naturally
fall into the category of my sons and daughters. Otherwise they would
pass without the system. Among ourselves a step-mother is called
mother, and a step-son a son.

IV. All the children of my several sisters, own and collateral, myself
a male, are my sons and daughters.

Reason: All my sisters are my wives, as well as the wives of my several
brothers.

V. All the grandchildren of my several sisters are my grandchildren.

Reason: They are the children of my sons and daughters.

VI. All the children of my several sisters, myself a female, are my
sons and daughters.

Reason: The husbands of my sisters are my husbands as well as theirs.
This difference, however, exists: I can distinguish my own children
from those of my sisters, to the latter of whom I am a step-mother.
But since this relationship is not discriminated, they fall into the
category of my sons and daughters. Otherwise they would fall without
the system.

VII. All the children of several own brothers are brothers and sisters
to each other.

Reason: These brothers are the husbands of all the mothers of these
children. The children can distinguish their own mothers, but not their
fathers, wherefore, as to the former, a part are own brothers and
sisters, and step-brothers and step-sisters to the remainder; but as to
the latter, they are probable brothers and sisters. For these reasons
they naturally fall into this category.

VIII. The children of these brothers and sisters are also brothers and
sisters to each other; the children of the latter are brothers and
sisters again, and this relationship continues downward among their
descendants indefinitely. It is precisely the same with the children
and descendants of several own sisters, and of several brothers and
sisters. An infinite series is thus created, which is a fundamental
part of the system. To account for this series it must be further
assumed that the marriage relation extended wherever the relationship
of brother and sister was recognized to exist; each brother having as
many wives as he had sisters, own or collateral, and each sister having
as many husbands as she had brothers, own or collateral. Marriage and
the family seem to form in the grade or category, and to be coextensive
with it. Such apparently was the beginning of that stupendous conjugal
system which has before been a number of times adverted to.

IX. All the brothers of my father are my fathers; and all the sisters
of my mother are my mothers.

Reasons, as in I, III, and VI.

X. All the brothers of my mother are my fathers.

Reason: They are my mother’s husbands.

XI. All the sisters of my mother are my mothers.

Reasons, as in VI.

XII. All the children of my collateral brothers and sisters are,
without distinction, my sons and daughters.

Reasons, as in I, III, IV, VI.

XIII. All the children of the latter are my grandchildren.

Reasons, as in II.

XIV. All the brothers and sisters of my grandfather and grandmother,
on the father’s side and on the mother’s side, are my grandfathers and
grandmothers.

Reason: They are the fathers and mothers of my father and mother.

Every relationship recognized under the system is thus explained from
the nature of the consanguine family, founded upon the intermarriage
of brothers and sisters, own and collateral, in a group. Relationships
on the father’s side are followed as near as the parentage of children
could be known, probable fathers being treated as actual fathers.
Relationships on the mother’s side are determined by the principle of
affinity, step-children being regarded as actual children.

Turning next to the marriage relationships, confirmatory results are
obtained, as the following table will show:


           TONGAN.                                                HAWAIIAN.

    My Brother’s Wife,     Male speaking. Unoho, My Wife.     Waheena, My Wife.

    ”  Wife’s Sister,       ”      ”      Unoho, ”   ”        Waheena,  ”  Wife.

    ”  Husband’s Brother,  Female  ”      Unoho, ”  Husband.  Kane,     ”  Husband.

    ”  Father’s Brother’s} Male    ”      Unoho, ”  Wife.     Waheena,  ”  Wife.
         Son’s Wife      }

    ”  Mother’s Sister’s }  ”      ”      Unoho, ”   ”        Waheena,  ”   ”
         Son’s Wife      }

    ”  Father’s Brother’s} Female  ”      Unoho, ”  Husband.  Kaikoeka, ” Bro.-in-law.
         Daughter’s Husb.}

    ”  Mother’s Sister’s }   ”     ”      Unoho, ”     ”      Kaikoeka, ”       ”
         Daughter’s Husb.}


Wherever the relationship of wife is found in the collateral line,
that of husband must be recognized in the lineal, and conversely.[455]
When this system of consanguinity and affinity first came into use
the relationships, which are still preserved, could have been none
other than those which actually existed, whatever may have afterwards
occurred in marriage usages.

From the evidence embodied in this system of consanguinity the
deduction is made that the consanguine family, as defined, existed
among the ancestors of the Polynesian tribes when the system
was formed. Such a form of the family is necessary to render an
interpretation of the system possible. Moreover, it furnishes an
interpretation of every relationship with reasonable exactness.

The following observation of Mr. Oscar Peschel is deserving of
attention: “That at any time and in any place the children of the same
mother have propagated themselves sexually, for any long period, has
been rendered especially incredible, since it has been established that
even in the case of organisms devoid of blood, such as the plants,
reciprocal fertilization of the descendants of the same parents is
to a great extent impossible.”[456] It must be remembered that the
consanguine group united in the marriage relation was not restricted
to own brothers and sisters; but it included collateral brothers
and sisters as well. The larger the group recognizing the marriage
relation, the less the evil of close interbreeding.

From general considerations the ancient existence of such a family
was probable. The natural and necessary relations of the consanguine
family to the punaluan, of the punaluan to the syndyasmian, and of the
syndyasmian to the monogamian, each presupposing its predecessor, lead
directly to this conclusion. They stand to each other in a logical
sequence, and together stretch across several ethnical periods from
savagery to civilization.

In like manner the three great systems of consanguinity, which
are connected with the three radical forms of the family, stand
to each other in a similarly connected series, running parallel
with the former, and indicating not less plainly a similar line of
human progress from savagery to civilization. There are reasons for
concluding that the remote ancestors of the Aryan, Semitic, and Uralian
families possessed a system identical with the Malayan when in the
savage state, which was finally modified into the Turanian after
the establishment of the gentile organization, and then overthrown
when the monogamian family appeared, introducing the Aryan system of
consanguinity.

Notwithstanding the high character of the evidence given, there is
still other evidence of the ancient existence of the consanguine family
among the Hawaiians which should not be overlooked.

Its antecedent existence is rendered probable by the condition of
society in the Sandwich Islands when it first became thoroughly known.
At the time the American missions were established upon these Islands
(1820), a state of society was found which appalled the missionaries.
The relations of the sexes and their marriage customs excited their
chief astonishment. They were suddenly introduced to a phase of
ancient society where the monogamian family was unknown, where the
syndyasmian family was unknown; but in the place of these, and without
understanding the organism, they found the punaluan family, with own
brothers and sisters not entirely excluded, in which the males were
living in polygyny, and the females in polyandry. It seemed to them
that they had discovered the lowest level of human degradation, not to
say of depravity. But the innocent Hawaiians, who had not been able to
advance themselves out of savagery, were living, no doubt respectably
and modestly for savages, under customs and usages which to them had
the force of laws. It is probable that they were living as virtuously
in their faithful observance, as these excellent missionaries were in
the performance of their own. The shock the latter experienced from
their discoveries expresses the profoundness of the expanse which
separates civilized from savage man. The high moral sense and refined
sensibilities, which had been a growth of the ages, were brought face
to face with the feeble moral sense and the coarse sensibilities of a
savage man of all these periods ago. As a contrast it was total and
complete. The Rev. Hiram Bingham, one of these veteran missionaries,
has given us an excellent history of the Sandwich Islands, founded upon
original investigations, in which he pictures the people as practicing
the sum of human abominations. “Polygamy, implying plurality of
husbands and wives,” he observes, “fornication, adultery, incest,
infant murder, desertion of husband and wives, parents and children;
sorcery, covetousness, and oppression extensively prevailed, and
seem hardly to have been forbidden by their religion.”[457] Punaluan
marriage and the punaluan family dispose of the principal charges in
this grave indictment, and leave the Hawaiians a chance at a moral
character. The existence of morality, even among savages, must be
recognized, although low in type; for there never could have been a
time in human experience when the principle of morality did not exist.
Wakea, the eponymous ancestor of the Hawaiians, according to Mr.
Bingham, is said to have married his eldest daughter. In the time of
these missionaries brothers and sisters married without reproach. “The
union of brother and sister in the highest ranks,” he further remarks,
“became fashionable, and continued until the revealed will of God was
made known to them.”[458] It is not singular that the intermarriage of
brothers and sisters should have survived from the consanguine family
into the punaluan in some cases, in the Sandwich Islands, because the
people had not attained to the gentile organization, and because the
punaluan family was a growth out of the consanguine not yet entirely
consummated. Although the family was substantially punaluan, the system
of consanguinity remained unchanged, as it came in with the consanguine
family, with the exception of certain marriage relationships.

It is not probable that the actual family, among the Hawaiians, was as
large as the group united in the marriage relation. Necessity would
compel its subdivision into smaller groups for the procurement of
subsistence, and for mutual protection; but each smaller family would
be a miniature of the group. It is not improbable that individuals
passed at pleasure from one of these subdivisions into another in the
punaluan as well as consanguine family, giving rise to that apparent
desertion by husbands and wives of each other, and by parents of their
children, mentioned by Mr. Bingham. Communism in living must, of
necessity, have prevailed both in the consanguine and in the punaluan
family, because it was a requirement of their condition. It still
prevails generally among savage and barbarous tribes.

A brief reference should be made to the “Nine Grades of Relations of
the Chinese.” An ancient Chinese author remarks as follows: “All men
born into the world have nine ranks of relations. My own generation
is one grade, my father’s is one, that of my grandfather’s is one,
that of my grandfather’s father is one, and that of my grandfather’s
grandfather is one; thus, above me are four grades: My son’s generation
is one, that of my grandson’s is one, that of my grandson’s son is
one, and that of my grandson’s grandson is one; thus, below me are
four grades; including myself in the estimate, there are, in all nine
grades. These are brethren, and although each grade belongs to a
different house or family, yet they are all my relations, and these are
the nine grades of relations.”

“The degrees of kindred in a family are like the streamlets of a
fountain, or the branches of a tree; although the streams differ in
being more or less remote, and the branches in being more or less near,
yet there is but one trunk and one fountain head.”[459]

The Hawaiian system of consanguinity realizes the nine grades of
relations (conceiving them reduced to five by striking off the two
upper and the two lower members) more perfectly than that of the
Chinese at the present time.[460] While the latter has changed through
the introduction of Turanian elements, and still more through special
additions to distinguish the several collateral lines, the former has
held, pure and simple, to the primary grades which presumptively were
all the Chinese possessed originally. It is evident that consanguinei,
in the Chinese as in the Hawaiian, are generalized into categories
by generations; all collaterals of the same grade being brothers and
sisters to each other. Moreover, marriage and the family are conceived
as forming within the grade, and confined, so far as husbands and
wives are concerned, within its limits. As explained by the Hawaiian
categories it is perfectly intelligible. At the same time it indicates
an anterior condition among the remote ancestors of the Chinese, of
which this fragment preserves a knowledge, precisely analogous to that
reflected by the Hawaiian. In other words, it indicated the presence
of the punaluan family when these grades were formed, of which the
consanguine was a necessary predecessor.

In the “Timæus” of Plato there is a suggestive recognition of the
same five primary grades of relations. All consanguinei in the Ideal
Republic were to fall into five categories, in which the women were
to be in common as wives, and the children in common as to parents.
“But how about the procreation of children?” Socrates says to Timæus.
“This, perhaps, you easily remember, on account of the novelty of the
proposal; for we ordered that marriage unions and children should be in
common to all persons whatsoever, special care being taken also that no
one should be able to distinguish his own children individually, but
all consider all their kindred; regarding those of an equal age, and in
the prime of life, as their brothers and sisters, those prior to them,
and yet further back as their parents and grandsires, and those below
them, as their children and grandchildren.”[461] Plato undoubtedly
was familiar with Hellenic and Pelasgian traditions not known to us,
which reached far back into the period of barbarism, and revealed
traces of a still earlier condition of the Grecian tribes. His ideal
family may have been derived from these delineations, a supposition
far more probable than that it was a philosophical deduction. It will
be noticed that his five grades of relations are precisely the same
as the Hawaiian; that the family was to form in each grade where the
relationship was that of brothers and sisters; and that husbands and
wives were to be in common in the group.

Finally, it will be perceived that the state of society indicated by
the consanguine family points with logical directness to an anterior
condition of promiscuous intercourse. There seems to be no escape
from this conclusion, although questioned by so eminent a writer as
Mr. Darwin.[462] It is not probable that promiscuity in the primitive
period was long continued even in the horde; because the latter would
break up into smaller groups for subsistence, and fall into consanguine
families. The most that can safely be claimed upon this difficult
question is, that the consanguine family was the first organized
form of society, and that it was necessarily an improvement upon the
previous unorganized state, whatever that state may have been. It found
mankind at the bottom of the scale, from which, as a starting point,
and the lowest known, we may take up the history of human progress, and
trace it through the growth of domestic institutions, inventions, and
discoveries, from savagery to civilization. By no chain of events can
it be shown more conspicuously than in the growth of the idea of the
family through successive forms. With the existence of the consanguine
family established, of which the proofs adduced seem to be sufficient,
the remaining families are easily demonstrated.

_System of Relationship of the Hawaiians and Rotumans._

_Vowel Sounds._—a, as in ale; ă, as in at; ä, as in father; ǐ, as in
it; ŭ, as oo in food; kä′-na = male; wä-hee′-na = female.
_ms_ = Male speaking  _fs_ = Female speaking
————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————+—————————————————————————————————————————————————————+———————————————————————————————————————————————
                                                            │   By Hon. Thomas Miller.                            │  By Rev. John Osborne.
               Description of Persons.                      │  Relationship in Hawaiian.      Translation.        │   Relationship in       Translation.
                                                            │                                                     │      Rotuman.
————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————+—————————————————————————————————————————————————————+———————————————————————————————————————————————
1  My great-grandfather                                     │ kŭ-pŭ′-na                      My grandparent       │ mä-pǐ-ga fä             My grandparent, male
2   ”   ”    grandfather’s brother                          │    ”                           ”      ”             │     ”     ”              ”     ”         ”
3   ”   ”         ”        sister                           │    ”                           ”      ”             │     ”    hon′-ǐ          ”     ”       female
4   ”   ”    grandmother                                    │    ”                           ”      ”             │     ”       ”            ”     ”         ”
5   ”   ”    grandmother’s sister                           │    ”                           ”      ”             │     ”       ”            ”     ”         ”
6   ” grandfather                                           │    ”                           ”      ”             │     ”    fä              ”     ”       male
7   ” grandmother                                           │    ”                           ”      ”             │     ”    hon′-ǐ          ”     ”       female
8   ” father                                                │ mä-kŭ′-ă kä′-na                ” parent, male       │ oi-fä                    ” father
9   ” mother                                                │ mä-kŭ-ă wä-hee′-na             ” parent, female     │ oi-hon′-ǐ                ” mother
10  ” son                                                   │ käi′-kee kä′-na                ” child, male        │ le′-e fä                 ” child, male
11  ” daughter                                              │ käi′-kee wä-hee′-na            ” child, female      │ le′-e hon′-ǐ             ”   ”    female
12  ” grandson                                              │ moo-pŭ′-nă kă′-na              ” grandchild, male   │ mä-pǐ-ga fä              ” grandchild, male
13  ” granddaughter                                         │ moo-pŭ′-nă wä-hee′-na          ”      ”      female │     ”    hon′-ǐ          ”      ”      female
14  ” great-grandson                                        │        ”         kä′-na        ”      ”      male   │     ”    fä              ”      ”      male
15  ”   ”   granddaughter                                   │        ”         wä-hee′-na    ”      ”      female │     ”    hon′-ǐ  ”       ”      female
16  ” great-great-grandson                                  │        ”         kä′-na        ”      ”      male   │     ”    fä              ”      ”      male
17  ”   ”     ”   granddaughter                             │        ”         wä-hee′-na    ”      ”      female │     ”    hon′-ǐ  ”       ”      female
18  ” older brother                (_ms_)                   │ käi-kŭ-a-ä′-na                 ” brother, older     │ sä-sǐ-gǐ                 ” brother, older
19  ”   ”     ”                    (_fs_)                   │ käi-kŭ-nä′-na                  ”    ”       ”       │ sag′-ve-ven′-ǐ           ”    ”       ”
20  ”   ”   sister                 (_ms_)                   │ käi-kŭ-wä-hee′-na              ” sister,    ”       │ sag-hon′-ǐ               ” sister,    ”
21  ”   ”     ”                    (_fs_)                   │ käi-kŭ-a-ä′-na                 ”    ”       ”       │ sa-sǐ-gǐ                 ”    ”       ”
22  ” younger brother              (_ms_)                   │ käi-ka-i′-na                   ” brother, younger   │ sa-sǐ-gǐ                 ” brother, younger
23  ”   ”       ”                  (_fs_)                   │ käi-kŭ-nä′-na                  ”    ”       ”       │ sag′-ve-ven′-ǐ           ”    ”       ”
24  ”   ”     sister               (_ms_)                   │ käi-kŭ-wä-hee′-na              ” sister,    ”       │ sag-hon′-ǐ               ” sister     ”
25  ”   ”       ”                  (_fs_)                   │ käi-ka-i′-na                   ”    ”       ”       │ sa-sǐ-gǐ                 ”    ”       ”
26  ” brother’s son                (_ms_)                   │ käi′-kee kä′-na                ” child, male        │ le′-e fä                 ” child, male
27  ”   ”       son’s wife           ”                      │ hŭ-no′-nă                      ” son-in-law         │ le′-e hon′-ǐ             ”   ”    female
28  ”   ”       daughter             ”                      │ käi′-kee wä-hee′-na            ” child, female      │ le′-e-hon′-ǐ             ”   ”      ”
29  ”   ”       daughter’s husband   ”                      │ hŭ-no′-nă                      ” daughter-in-law    │ le′-e fä                 ”   ”    male
30  ”   ”       grandson             ”                      │ moo-pŭ′-nă kä′-na              ” grandchild, male   │ mä-pǐ-ga fä              ” grandchild, male
31  ”   ”       granddaughter        ”                      │       ”          wä-hee′-na    ”      ”      female │    ”     hon′-ǐ          ”      ”      female
32  ”   ”       great-grandson       ”                      │       ”          kä′-na        ”      ”      male   │    ”     fä              ”      ”      male
33  ”   ”         ”   granddaughter  ”                      │       ”          wä-hee′-na    ”      ”      female │    ”     hon′-ǐ          ”      ”      female
34  ” sister’s son                   ”                      │ käi′-kee kä′-na                ” child, male        │ le′-e fä                 ” child, male
35  ”   ”      son’s wife            ”                      │ hŭ-no′-nă                      ” daughter-in-law    │ le′-e hon′-ǐ             ”  ”     female
36  ”   ”      daughter              ”                      │ käi-kee wä-hee′-na             ” child, female      │ le′-e-hon′-ǐ             ”  ”       ”
37  ”   ”      daughter’s husband    ”                      │ hŭ-no′-nă                      ” son-in-law         │ le′-e fä                 ”  ”     male
38  ”   ”      grandson              ”                      │ moo-pŭ′-nă kä′-na              ” grandchild, male   │ mä-pǐ-ga fä              ” grandchild, male
39 My sister’s granddaughter        (_ms_)                  │ moo-pŭ′-nă wä-hee′-na          ”     ”       female │ mä-pǐ-ga hon′-ǐ          ”     ”       female
40  ”     ”    great-grandson          ”                    │      ”     kä′-na              ”     ”       male   │    ”     fä              ”     ”       male
41  ”     ”      ”   granddaughter     ”                    │      ”     wä-hee′-na          ”     ”       female │    ”     hon′-ǐ          ”     ”       female
42  ” brother’s son                 (_fs_)                  │ käi′-kee kä′-na                ” child, male        │ le′-e fä                 ” child, male
43  ”     ”     son’s wife             ”                    │ hŭ-no′-nă                      ” daughter-in-law    │ le′-e hon′-ǐ             ”   ”    female
44  ”     ”     daughter               ”                    │ käi′-kee wä-hee′-na            ” child, female      │ le′-e hon′-ǐ             ”   ”      ”
45  ”     ”     daughter’s husband     ”                    │ hŭ-no′-nă                      ” son-in-law         │ le′-e fä                 ”   ”     male
46  ”     ”     grandson               ”                    │ moo-pŭ′-nă kä′-na              ” grandchild, male   │ mä-pǐ-ga fä              ” grandchild, male
47  ”     ”     granddaughter          ”                    │      ”     wä-hee′-na          ”     ”       female │    ”     hon′-ǐ          ”     ”       female
48  ”     ”     great-grandson         ”                    │      ”     kä′-na              ”     ”       male   │    ”     fä              ”     ”       male
49  ”     ”     great-granddaughter    ”                    │      ”     wä-hee′-na          ”     ”       female │    ”     hon′-ǐ          ”     ”       female
50  ” sister’s son                     ”                    │ käi′-kee kä′-na                ” child, male        │ le′-e fä                 ” child, male
51  ”     ”    son’s wife              ”                    │ hŭ-no′-nă                      ” daughter-in-law    │ le′-e hon′-ǐ             ”   ”    female
52  ”     ”    daughter                ”                    │ käi′-kee wä-hee′-na            ” child, female      │ le′-e hon′-ǐ             ”   ”      ”
53  ”     ”    daughter’s husband      ”                    │ hŭ-no′-na                      ” son-in-law         │ le′-e fä                 ”   ”    male
54  ”     ”    grandson                ”                    │ moo-pŭ′-nă kä′-na              ” grandchild, male   │ mä-pǐ-ga fä              ” grandchild, male
55  ”     ”    granddaughter           ”                    │      ”     wä-hee′-na          ”     ”       female │    ”        hon′-ǐ       ”     ”       female
56  ”     ”    great-grandson          ”                    │      ”     kä′-na              ”     ”       male   │    ”        fä           ”     ”       male
57  ”     ”    great-granddaughter     ”                    │      ”     wä-hee′-na          ”     ”       female │    ”        hon′-ǐ       ”     ”       female
58  ” father’s brother                                      │ mä-kŭ′-ă kä′-na                ” parent, male       │ oi-fä                    ” parent, male
59  ”    ”     brother’s wife                               │ mä-kŭ′-a wä-hee′-na            ”   ”     female     │ oi-hon′-ǐ                ”   ”     female
60  ”    ”         ”     son (_older,  ms_)                 │ käi′-kŭ-a-ä′-na                ” brother, older     │ sä-sǐ-gǐ                 ” brother
61  ”    ”         ”      ”  (_younger, ms_)                │ käi′-ka-i-na                   ”   ”      younger   │ sä-sǐ-gǐ                 ”   ”
62  ”    ”         ”     son’s wife                         │ wä-hee′-na                     ” wife               │ sag-hon′-ǐ               ” sister
63  ”    ”         ”     daughter, (_older,  ms_)           │ käi′-ku-wä-hee′-na             ” sister             │ sag-hon′-ǐ               ”   ”
64  ”    ”         ”        ”      (_younger, ms_)          │ käi′-kŭ-wä-hee′-na             ”   ”                │      ”                   ”   ”
65  ”    ”         ”     daughter’s husband                 │ käi′-ko-ee′-kä                 ” brother-in-law     │ sä-sǐ-gǐ                 ” brother
66  ”    ”         ”     son’s son                          │ käi′-kee kä′-na                ” child, male        │ le′-e fä                 ” child, male
67  ”    ”         ”       ”   daughter                     │ käi′-kee wä-hee′-na            ”   ”    female      │ le′-e hon′-ǐ             ”   ”    female
68  ”    ”         ”     daughter’s son                     │ käi′-kee kä′-na                ”   ”    male        │ le′-e fä                 ”   ”    male
69  ”    ”         ”         ”      daughter                │          ”    wä-hee′-na       ”   ”    female      │ le′-e hon′-ǐ             ”   ”    female
70  ”    ”         ”     great-grandson                     │ moo-pŭ′-nă kä′-na              ” grandchild, male   │ mä-pǐ-ga fä              ” grandchild, male
71  ”    ”         ”       ”   granddaughter                │     ”            wä-hee′-na    ”     ”       female │    ”     hon′-ǐ          ”     ”       female
72  ”    ”         ”     great-great-grandson               │     ”            kä′-na        ”     ”       male   │    ”     fä              ”     ”       male
73  ”    ”         ”       ”     ” granddaughter            │     ”   wä-hee′-na             ”     ”       female │    ”     hon′-ǐ          ”     ”       female
74  ” father’s sister                                       │ mä-kŭ′-ă wä-hee′-na            ” parent, female     │ oi-hon′-ǐ                ” parent, female
75  ”    ”     sister’s husband                             │       ”           kä′-na       ”   ”     male       │ oi-fä                    ”   ”     male
76  ”    ”        ”     son (_older,  ms_)                  │ käi′-kŭ-a-ä′-na                ” brother, older     │ sä-sǐ-gǐ                 ” brother
77  ”    ”        ”      ”  (_younger, ms_)                 │ käi′-ka-i-na                   ”    ”     younger   │    ”                     ”   ”
78  ”    ”        ”     son’s wife                          │ wä-hee′-na                     ” wife               │ sag-hon′-ǐ               ” sister
79  ”    ”        ”     daughter                            │ käi′-kŭ wä-hee′-na             ” sister             │     ”                    ”   ”
80  ”    ”        ”     daughter’s husband                  │ kai-ko-ee′-kä                  ” brother-in-law     │ sä-sǐ-gǐ                 ” brother
81  ”    ”        ”     son’s son                           │ käi′-kee kä′-na                ” child, male        │ le′-e fä                 ” child, male
82  My father’s sister’s son’s daughter                     │ käi′-kee wä-hee′-na            ”   ”    female      │ le′-e hon′-ǐ             ”   ”    female
83  ”     ”       ”      daughter’s son                     │         ”   kä′-na             ”   ”    male        │   ”   fä                 ”   ”    male
84  ”     ”       ”          ”      daughter                │         ”   wä-hee′-na         ”    ”    female     │   ”   hon′-ǐ             ”   ”    female
85  ”     ”       ”      great-grandson                     │ moo-pŭ′-nă kä′-na              ” grandchild, male   │ mä-pǐ-ga fä              ” grandchild, male
86  ”     ”       ”        ”   granddaughter                │      ”     wä-hee′-na          ”    ”        female │    ”     hon′-ǐ          ”      ”      female
87  ”     ”       ”      great-great-grandson               │      ”     kä′-na              ”    ”        male   │    ”     fä              ”      ”      male
88  ”     ”       ”        ”     ”   granddaughter          │      ”     wä-hee′-na          ”    ”        female │    ”     hon′-ǐ          ”      ”      female
89  ” mother’s brother                                      │ mä-kŭ-ă kä′-na                 ” parent, male       │ oi-fä                    ” parent, male
90  ”    ”     brother’s wife                               │        ”      wä-hee′-na       ”    ”    female     │ oi-hon′-ǐ                ”   ”     female
91  ”    ”        ”      son (_older, ms_)                  │ käi′-kŭ-a-ä′-na                ” brother, older     │ sä-sǐ-gǐ                 ” brother
92  ”    ”        ”       ”  (_younger, ms_)                │ käi′-ka-i′-na                  ”    ”     younger   │    ”                     ”   ”
93  ”    ”        ”      son’s wife                         │ wä-hee′-na                     ” wife               │ sag-hon′-ǐ               ” sister
94  ”    ”        ”      daughter                           │ käi′-kŭ-wä-hee′-na             ” sister             │     ”                    ”   ”
95  ”    ”        ”      daughter’s husband                 │ käi′-ko-ee′-kä                 ” brother-in-law     │ sä-sǐ-gǐ                 ” brother
96  ”    ”        ”      son’s son                          │ käi′-kee kä′-na                ” child, male        │ le′-e fä                 ” child, male
97  ”    ”        ”        ”   daughter                     │        ”   wä-hee′-na          ”   ”    female      │    ”  hon′-ǐ             ”   ”    female
98  ”    ”        ”      daughter’s son                     │        ”   kä′-na              ”   ”    male        │    ”  fä                 ”   ”    male
99  ”    ”        ”        ”        daughter                │        ”   wä-hee′-na          ”   ”    female      │    ”  hon′-ǐ             ”   ”    female
100 ”    ”        ”      great-grandson                     │ moo-pŭ′-nă kä′-na              ” grandchild, male   │ mä-pǐ-ga fä              ” grandchild, male
101 ”    ”        ”        ”   granddaughter                │       ”    wä-hee′-na          ”     ”       female │    ”     hon′-ǐ          ”      ”      female
102 ”    ”        ”      great-great-grandson               │       ”    kä′-na              ”     ”       male   │    ”     fä              ”      ”      male
103 ”    ”        ”        ”     ”   granddaughter          │       ”    wä-hee′-na          ”     ”       female │    ”     hon′-ǐ          ”      ”      female
104 ”  mother’s sister                                      │ mä-kŭ-ă wä-hee′-na             ” parent, female     │ oi-hon′-ǐ                ” parent, female
105 ”    ”      sister’s husband                            │           ”   kä′-na           ”   ”     male       │ oi-fä                    ”   ”     male
106 ”    ”        ”  son (_older, ms_)                      │ käi′-ku-ä-ä′-na                ” brother, older     │ sä-sǐ-gǐ                 ” brother
107 ”    ”        ”   ”  (_younger, ms_)                    │ käi′-ka-i-na                   ”   ”      younger   │    ”                     ”    ”
108 ”    ”        ”  son’s wife                             │ wä-hee′-na                     ” wife               │ sag-hon′-ǐ               ” sister
109 ”    ”        ”  daughter                               │ käi′-kŭ wä-hee′-na             ” sister             │    ”                     ”   ”
110 ”    ”        ”  daughter’s husband                     │ käi′-ko-ee′-kä                 ” brother-in-law     │ sä-sǐ-gǐ                 ” brother
111 ”    ”        ”  son’s son                              │ käi′-kee kä′-na                ” child, male        │ le′-e fä                 ” child, male
112 ”    ”        ”    ”   daughter                         │     ”    wä-hee′-na            ”   ”    female      │   ”   hon′-ǐ             ”   ”    female
113 ”    ”        ”  daughters son                          │     ”    kä′-na                ”   ”    male        │   ”   fä                 ”   ”    male
114 ”    ”        ”    ”       daughter                     │     ”    wä-hee′-na            ”   ”    female      │   ”   hon′-ǐ             ”   ”    female
115 ”    ”        ”  great-grandson                         │ moo-pŭ′-nă kä′-na              ” grandchild, male   │ mä-pǐ-ga fä              ” grandchild, male
116 ”    ”        ”    ”   granddaughter                    │      ”     wä-hee′-na          ”      ”      female │    ”     hon′-ǐ          ”      ”      female
117 ”    ”        ”  great-great-grandson                   │      ”     kä′-na              ”      ”      male   │    ”     fä              ”      ”      male
118 ”    ”        ”    ”     ”   granddaughter              │      ”     wä-hee′-na          ”      ”      female │    ”     hon′-ǐ          ”      ”      female
119 ” father’s father’s brother                             │ kŭ-pŭ′-nă kä′-na               ” grandparent, male  │    ”     fä              ” grandparent, male
120 ”    ”        ”     brother’s son                       │ mä-kŭ′-ă kä′-na                ” parent, male       │ oi-fä                    ” parent, male
121 ”    ”        ”        ”      daughter                  │    ”     wä-hee′-na            ”    ”    female     │ oi-hon′-ǐ                ”   ”     female
122 ”    ”        ”        ”      grandson      (_older_)   │ käi′-kŭ-a-ä′-na                ” brother, elder     │ sä-sǐ-gǐ                 ” brother
123 ”    ”        ”        ”      granddaughter (  ”  )     │ käi′-kŭ wä-hee′-na             ” sister, elder      │ sag-hon′-ǐ               ” sister
124 ”    ”        ”        ”      great-grandson            │ käi′-kee kä′-na                ” child, male        │ le′-e fä                 ” child, male
125 My father’s father’s brother’s great-granddaughter      │ käi′-kee wä-hee′-na            ” child, female      │ le′-e hon′-ǐ             ”   ”    female
126  ”    ”         ”        ”     great-great-grandson     │ moo-pŭ-nă kä′-na               ” grandchild, male   │ mä-pǐ-ga fä              ”  grandchild, male
127  ”    ”         ”        ”       ”     ”   granddaughter│     ”     wä-hee′na            ”     ”       female │    ”     hon′-ǐ          ”      ”       female
128  ” father’s father’s sister                             │ kŭ-pŭ′-nă wä-hee′-na           ” grandparent female │    ”     hon′-ǐ          ” grandparent, female
129  ”    ”         ”    sister’s son                       │ mä-kŭ-ă kä′-na                 ” parent, male       │ oi-fä                    ” parent, male
130  ”    ”         ”       ”     daughter                  │   ”    wä-hee′-na              ”    ”    female     │ oi-hon′-ǐ                ”    ”    female
131  ”    ”         ”       ”     grandson     (_older_)    │ käi′-kŭ-a-ä′-na                ” brother, elder     │ sä-sǐ-gǐ                 ” brother
132  ”    ”         ”       ”     granddaughter   ”         │ käi′-kŭ-wä-hee′-na             ” sister,    ”       │ sag-hon′-ǐ               ” sister
133  ”    ”         ”       ”     great-grandson            │ käi′-kee kä′-na                ” child, male        │ le′-e fä                 ” child, male
134  ”    ”         ”       ”       ”   granddaughter       │     ”    wä-hee′-na            ”   ”    female      │ le′-e hon′-ǐ             ”  ”  female
135  ”    ”         ”       ”     great-great-grandson      │ moo-pŭ′-nä kä′-na              ” grandchild, male   │ mä-pǐ-ga fä              ” grandchild, male
136  ”    ”         ”       ”       ”     ”   granddaughter │      ”     wä-hee′-na          ”   ”    female      │     ”    hon′-ǐ          ”      ”      female
137  ” mother’s mother’s brother                            │ kŭ-pŭ′-nă  kä′-na              ” grandparent, male  │     ”    fä              ” grandparent, male
138  ”    ”       ”      brother’s son                      │ mä-kă-ă kä′-na                 ” parent, male       │ oi-fä                    ” parent, male
139  ”    ”       ”          ”     daughter                 │     ”   wä-hee′-na             ”    ”    female     │ oi-hon′-ǐ                ”   ”     female
140  ”    ”       ”          ”     grandson    (_older_)    │ käi-kŭ-a-ä′-na                 ” brother, elder     │ sä-sǐ-gǐ                 ” brother
141  ”    ”       ”          ”     granddaughter  ”         │ käi′-kŭ-wä-hee-na              ” sister,    ”       │ sag-hon′-ǐ               ” sister
142  ”    ”       ”          ”     great-grandson           │ käi′-kee kä′-na                ” child, male        │ le′-e fä                 ” child, male
143  ”    ”       ”          ”       ”   granddaughter      │    ”     wä-hee′-na            ”   ”    female      │ le′-e honi-ǐ             ”    ”   female
144  ”    ”       ”          ”     great-great-grandson     │ moo-pŭ′-nă kä′-na              ” grandchild, male   │ mä-pǐ-ga fä              ” grandchild, male
145  ”    ”       ”          ”       ”     ”   granddaughter│       ”    wä-hee′-na          ”     ”       female │     ”    hon′-ǐ          ”     ”       female
146  ” mother’s mother’s sister                             │ kŭ-pŭ-nă wä-hee-na             ” grandparent, male  │     ”    hon′-ǐ          ” grandparent, male
147  ”    ”       ”      sister’s son                       │ mä-kŭ-ă kä′-na                 ” parent, male       │ oi-fä                    ” parent, male
148  ”    ”       ”          ”    daughter                  │    ”    wä-hee′-na             ”   ”     female     │ oi-hon′-ǐ                ”    ”    female
149  ”    ”       ”          ”  grandson (_older, ms_)      │ käi′-kŭ-ă-ä-na                 ” brother, elder     │ sä-sǐ-gǐ                 ” brother
150  ”    ”       ”          ”    granddaughter             │ käi′-kŭ-wä-hee′-na             ” sister,   ”        │ sag-hon′-ǐ               ” sister
151  ”    ”       ”          ”    great-grandson            │ käi′-kee-kä′-na                ” child, male        │ le′-e fä                 ” child, male
152  ”    ”       ”          ”      ”   granddaughter       │   ”   wä-hee′-na               ”    ”   female      │ le′-e hon′-ǐ             ”    ”   female
153  ”    ”       ”          ”    great-great-grandson      │ moo-pŭ′-nă kä′-na              ” grandchild, male   │ mä-pǐ-ga fä              ” grandchild, male
154  ”    ”       ”          ”       ”    ”   granddaughter │       ”    wä-hee′-na          ”     ”       female │ mä-pǐ-ga hon′-ǐ          ”     ”       female
155  ” husband                                              │ kä′-na                         ” husband            │ ve-ven′-ǐ                ” husband
156  ” wife                                                 │ wä-hee′-na                     ” wife               │ hoi-e-nä, and hen        ” wife
157  ” husband’s father                                     │ mä-kŭ′-ă-hŭ-nä-ai              ” father-in-law      │ oi-fä                    ” father
158  ”    ”      mother                                     │       ”                        ” mother-in-law      │ oi-hon′-ǐ                ” mother
159  ” wife’s father                                        │       ”                        ” father-in-law      │ oi-fä                    ” father
160  ”    ”   mother                                        │       ”                        ” mother-in-law      │ oi-hon′-ǐ                ” mother
161  ” son-in-law                                           │ hŭ-no′-nă kä′-na               ” son-in-law         │ le′-e fä                 ” child, male
162  ” daughter-in-law                                      │     ”     wä-hee′-na           ” daughter-in-law    │ le′-e hon′-ǐ             ”   ”    female
163  ” brother-in-law (_husband’s brother_)                 │ kä′-na                         ” husband            │ hom-fu′-e                ” brother-in-law
164  ”    ”    ”  ”   (_sister’s husband, fs_)              │    ”                           ”    ”               │ me-i                     ”    ”    ”   ”
165  ”    ”    ”  ”   (_wife’s sister’s husband_)           │ pŭ-na-lŭ-ä                     ” intimate companion │
166  ”    ”    ”  ”   (_wife’s brother_)                    │ käi-ko-a′-kä                   ” brother-in-law     │ me-i                     ”    ”    ”   ”
167  ” sister-in-law  (_wife’s sister_)                     │ wä-hee′-na                     ” wife               │ hom-fu′-e                ” sister-in-law
168 My sister-in-law  (_husband’s sister_)                  │ käi-ko-a′-kä                   ” sister-in-law      │ me-i                     ”    ”    ”  ”
169 ”     ”    ”  ”   (_brother’s wife_)                    │ wä-hee′-na                     ” wife               │ hom-fu′-e                ”    ”    ”  ”
170 ”     ”    ”  ”   (   ”       ”  _fs_)                  │ käi-ko-a′-kä                   ” sister-in-law      │     ”                    ”    ”    ”  ”
171 ”     ”    ”  ”   (_husband’s brother’s wife_)          │ pŭ-na-lŭ-ä                     ” intimate companion │
172 ”     ”    ”  ”   (_wife’s brother’s wife_)             │ wä-hee′-na                     ” wife               │
173 ”  step-father                                          │ mä-kŭ′-a kä′-na                ” parent, male       │ oi-fä                    ” parent, male
174 ”    ”  mother                                          │    ”     wä-hee′-na            ”   ”     female     │ oi-hon′-ǐ                ”   ”     female
175 ”    ”  son                                             │ käi′-kee kä′-na                ” child, male        │ le′-e fä                 ” child, male
176 ”    ” daughter                                         │    ”      wä-hee′-na           ”   ”    female      │ le′-e hon′-ǐ             ”   ”    female



CHAPTER III.

THE PUNALUAN FAMILY.

    THE PUNALUAN FAMILY SUPERVENED UPON THE
    CONSANGUINE.—TRANSITION, HOW PRODUCED.—HAWAIIAN CUSTOM OF
    PUNALUA.—ITS PROBABLE ANCIENT PREVALENCE OVER WIDE AREAS.—THE
    GENTES ORIGINATED PROBABLY IN PUNALUAN GROUPS.—THE TURANIAN
    SYSTEM OF CONSANGUINITY.—CREATED BY THE PUNALUAN FAMILY.—IT
    PROVES THE EXISTENCE OF THIS FAMILY WHEN THE SYSTEM WAS
    FORMED.—DETAILS OF SYSTEM.—EXPLANATION OF ITS RELATIONSHIPS
    IN THEIR ORIGIN.—TABLE OF TURANIAN AND GANOWÁNIAN SYSTEMS OF
    CONSANGUINITY AND AFFINITY.


The Punaluan family has existed in Europe, Asia, and America within the
historical period, and in Polynesia within the present century. With a
wide prevalence in the tribes of mankind in the Status of Savagery, it
remained in some instances among tribes who had advanced into the Lower
Status of barbarism, and in one case, that of the Britons, among tribes
who had attained the Middle Status.

In the course of human progress it followed the consanguine family,
upon which it supervened, and of which it was a modification. The
transition from one into the other was produced by the gradual
exclusion of own brothers and sisters from the marriage relation, the
evils of which could not forever escape human observation. It may be
impossible to recover the events which led to deliverance; but we are
not without some evidence tending to show how it occurred. Although
the facts from which these conclusions are drawn are of a dreary and
forbidding character, they will not surrender the knowledge they
contain without a patient as well as careful examination.

Given the consanguine family, which involved own brothers and sisters
and also collateral brothers and sisters in the marriage relation, and
it was only necessary to exclude the former from the group, and retain
the latter, to change the consanguine into the punaluan family. To
effect the exclusion of the one class and the retention of the other
was a difficult process, because it involved a radical change in the
composition of the family, not to say in the ancient plan of domestic
life. It also required the surrender of a privilege which savages would
be slow to make. Commencing, it may be supposed, in isolated cases, and
with a slow recognition of its advantages, it remained an experiment
through immense expanses of time; introduced partially at first, then
becoming general, and finally universal among the advancing tribes,
still in savagery, among whom the movement originated. It affords
a good illustration of the operation of the principle of natural
selection.

The significance of the Australian class system presents itself anew
in this connection. It is evident from the manner in which the classes
were formed, and from the rule with respect to marriage and descents,
that their primary object was to exclude own brothers and sisters
from the marriage relation, while the collateral brothers and sisters
were retained in that relation. The former object is impressed upon
the classes by an external law; but the latter, which is not apparent
on the face of the organization, is made evident by tracing their
descents.[463] It is thus found that first, second, and more remote
cousins, who are collateral brothers and sisters under their system of
consanguinity, are brought perpetually back into the marriage relation,
while own brothers and sisters are excluded. The number of persons
in the Australian punaluan group is greater than in the Hawaiian,
and its composition is slightly different; but the remarkable fact
remains in both cases, that the brotherhood of the husbands formed the
basis of the marriage relation in one group, and the sisterhood of
the wives the basis in the other. This difference, however, existed
with respect to the Hawaiians, that it does not appear as yet that
there were any classes among them between whom marriages must occur.
Since the Australian classes gave birth to the punaluan group, which
contained the germ of the gens, it suggests the probability that this
organization into classes upon sex once prevailed among all the tribes
of mankind who afterwards fell under the gentile organization. It would
not be surprising if the Hawaiians, at some anterior period, were
organized in such classes.

Remarkable as it may seem, three of the most important and most
wide-spread institutions of mankind, namely, the punaluan family, the
organization into gentes, and the Turanian system of consanguinity,
root themselves in an anterior organization analogous to the punaluan
group, in which the germ of each is found. Some evidence of the truth
of this proposition will appear in the discussion of this family.

As punaluan marriage gave the punaluan family, the latter would give
the Turanian system of consanguinity, as soon as the existing system
was reformed so as to express the relationships as they actually
existed in this family. But something more than the punaluan group was
needed to produce this result, namely, the organization into gentes,
which permanently excluded brothers and sisters from the marriage
relation by an organic law, who before that, must have been frequently
involved in that relation. When this exclusion was made complete it
would work a change in all these relationships which depended upon
these marriages; and when the system of consanguinity was made to
conform to the new state of these relationships, the Turanian system
would supervene upon the Malayan. The Hawaiians had the punaluan
family, but neither the organization into gentes nor the Turanian
system of consanguinity. Their retention of the old system of the
consanguine family leads to a suspicion, confirmed by the statements of
Mr. Bingham, that own brothers and sisters were frequently involved in
the punaluan group, thus rendering a reformation of the old system of
consanguinity impossible. Whether the punaluan group of the Hawaiian
type can claim an equal antiquity with the Australian classes is
questionable, since the latter is more archaic than any other known
constitution of society. But the existence of a punaluan group of one
or the other type was essential to the birth of the gentes, as the
latter were essential to the production of the Turanian system of
consanguinity. The three institutions will be considered separately.

I. _The Punaluan Family._

In rare instances a custom has been discovered in a concrete form
usable as a key to unlock some of the mysteries of ancient society,
and explain what before could only be understood imperfectly. Such a
custom is the _Pŭnalŭa_ of the Hawaiians. In 1860 Judge Lorin Andrews,
of Honolulu, in a letter accompanying a schedule of the Hawaiian
system of consanguinity, commented upon one of the Hawaiian terms of
relationship as follows: “The relationship of _pŭnalŭa_ is rather
amphibious. It arose from the fact that two or more brothers with their
wives, or two or more sisters with their husbands, were inclined to
possess each other in common; but the modern use of the word is that
of _dear friend_, or _intimate companion_.” That which Judge Andrews
says they were inclined to do, and which may then have been a declining
practice, their system of consanguinity proves to have been once
universal among them. The Rev. Artemus Bishop, lately deceased, one
of the oldest missionaries in these Islands, sent to the author the
same year, with a similar schedule, the following statement upon the
same subject: “This confusion of relationships is the result of the
ancient custom among relatives of the living together of husbands and
wives in common.” In a previous chapter the remark of Mr. Bingham was
quoted that the polygamy of which he was writing, “implied a plurality
of husbands and wives.” The same fact is reiterated by Dr. Bartlett:
“The natives had hardly more modesty or shame than so many animals.
Husbands had many wives, and wives many husbands, and exchanged with
each other at pleasure.”[464] The form of marriage which they found
created a punaluan group, in which the husbands and wives were jointly
intermarried in the group. Each of these groups, including the children
of the marriages, was a punaluan family; for one consisted of several
brothers and their wives, and the other of several sisters with their
husbands.

If we now turn to the Hawaiian system of consanguinity, in the Table,
it will be found that a man calls his wife’s sister his wife. All
the sisters of his wife, own as well as collateral, are also his
wives. But the husband of his wife’s sister he calls _pŭnalŭa_, i.
e., _his intimate companion_; and all the husbands of the several
sisters of his wife the same. They were jointly intermarried in the
group. These husbands were not, probably, brothers; if they were, the
blood relationship would naturally have prevailed over the affineal;
but their wives were sisters, own and collateral. In this case the
sisterhood of the wives was the basis upon which the group was
formed, and their husbands stood to each other in the relationship of
_pŭnalŭa_. In the other group, which rests upon the brotherhood of
the husbands, a woman calls her husband’s brother her husband. All
the brothers of her husband, own as well as collateral, were also her
husbands. But the wife of her husband’s brother she calls _pŭnalŭa_,
and the several wives of her husband’s brothers stand to her in the
relationship of _pŭnalŭa_. These wives were not, probably, sisters
of each other, for the reason stated in the other case, although
exceptions doubtless existed under both branches of the custom. All
these wives stood to each other in the relationship of _pŭnalŭa_.

It is evident that the punaluan family was formed out of the
consanguine. Brothers ceased to marry their own sisters; and after the
gentile organization had worked upon society its complete results,
their collateral sisters as well. But in the interval they shared their
remaining wives in common. In like manner, sisters ceased marrying
their own brothers, and after a long period of time, their collateral
brothers; but they shared their remaining husbands in common. The
advancement of society out of the consanguine into the punaluan family
was the inception of a great upward movement, preparing the way for
the gentile organization which gradually conducted to the syndyasmian
family, and ultimately to the monogamian.

Another remarkable fact with respect to the custom of punalua, is
the necessity which exists for its ancient prevalence among the
ancestors of the Turanian and Ganowánian families when their system
of consanguinity was formed. The reason is simple and conclusive.
Marriages in punaluan groups explain the relationships in the system.
Presumptively they are those which actually existed when this system
was formed. The existence of the system, therefore, requires the
antecedent prevalence of punaluan marriage, and of the punaluan family.
Advancing to the civilized nations, there seems to have been an equal
necessity for the ancient existence of punaluan groups among the remote
ancestors of all such as possessed the gentile organization—Greeks,
Romans, Germans, Celts, Hebrews—for it is reasonably certain that all
the families of mankind who rose under the gentile organization to the
practice of monogamy possessed, in prior times, the Turanian system of
consanguinity which sprang from the punaluan group. It will be found
that the great movement, which commenced in the formation of this
group, was, in the main, consummated through the organization into
gentes, and that the latter was generally accompanied, prior to the
rise of monogamy, by the Turanian system of consanguinity.

Traces of the punaluan custom remained, here and there, down to the
Middle Period of barbarism, in exceptional cases, in European, Asiatic,
and American tribes. The most remarkable illustration is given by Cæsar
in stating the marriage customs of the ancient Britons. He observes
that, “by tens and by twelves, husbands possessed their wives in
common; and especially brothers with brothers and parents with their
children.”[465]

This passage reveals a custom of intermarriage in the group which
_pŭnalŭa_ explains. Barbarian mothers would not be expected to show
ten and twelve sons, as a rule, or even in exceptional cases; but
under the Turanian system of consanguinity, which we are justified in
supposing the Britons to have possessed, large groups of brothers are
always found, because male cousins, near and remote, fall into this
category with _Ego_. Several brothers among the Britons, according to
Cæsar, possessed their wives in common. Here we find one branch of the
punaluan custom, pure and simple. The correlative group which this
presupposes, where several sisters shared their husbands in common,
is not suggested directly by Cæsar; but it probably existed as the
complement of the first. Something beyond the first he noticed, namely,
that parents, with their children, shared their wives in common. It
is not unlikely that these wives were sisters. Whether or not Cæsar
by this expression referred to the other group, it serves to mark
the extent to which plural marriages in the group existed among the
Britons; and which was the striking fact that arrested the attention
of this distinguished observer. Where several brothers were married to
each other’s wives, these wives were married to each other’s husbands.

Herodotus, speaking of the Massagetæ, who were in the Middle Status
of barbarism, remarks that every man had one wife, yet all the wives
were common.[466] It may be implied from this statement that the
syndyasmian family had begun to supervene upon the punaluan. Each
husband paired with one wife, who thus became his principal wife, but
within the limits of the group husbands and wives continued in common.
If Herodotus intended to intimate a state of promiscuity, it probably
did not exist. The Massagetæ, although ignorant of iron, possessed
flocks and herds, fought on horseback armed with battle-axes of copper
and with copper-pointed spears, and manufactured and used the wagon
(ἅμαξα). It is not supposable that a people living in promiscuity
could have attained such a degree of advancement. He also remarks
of the Agathyrsi, who were in the same status probably, that they
had their wives in common that they might all be brothers, and, as
members of a common family, neither envy nor hate one another.[467]
Punaluan marriage in the group affords a more rational and satisfactory
explanation of these, and similar usages in other tribes mentioned by
Herodotus, than polygamy or general promiscuity. His accounts are too
meager to illustrate the actual state of society among them.

Traces of the punaluan custom were noticed in some of the least
advanced tribes of the South American aborigines; but the particulars
are not fully given. Thus, the first navigators who visited the coast
tribes of Venezuela found a state of society which suggests for its
explanation punaluan groups. “They observe no law or rule in matrimony,
but took as many wives as they would, and they as many husbands,
quitting one another at pleasure, without reckoning any wrong done
on either part. There was no such thing as jealousy among them, all
living as best pleased them, without taking offence at one another....
The houses they dwelt in were common to all, and so spacious that they
contained one hundred and sixty persons, strongly built, though covered
with palm-tree leaves, and shaped like a bell.”[468] These tribes used
earthen vessels and were therefore in the Lower Status of barbarism;
but from this account were but slightly removed from savagery. In this
case, and in those mentioned by Herodotus, the observations upon which
the statements were made were superficial. It shows, at least, a low
condition of the family and of the marriage relation.

When North America was discovered in its several parts, the punaluan
family seems to have entirely disappeared. No tradition remained
among them, so far as I am aware, of the ancient prevalence of the
punaluan custom. The family generally had passed out of the punaluan
into the syndyasmian form; but it was environed with the remains of an
ancient conjugal system which points backward to punaluan groups. One
custom may be cited of unmistakable punaluan origin, which is still
recognized in at least forty North American Indian tribes. Where a man
married the eldest daughter of a family he became entitled by custom
to all her sisters as wives when they attained the marriageable age.
It was a right seldom enforced, from the difficulty, on the part of
the individual, of maintaining several families, although polygamy was
recognized universally as a privilege of the males. We find in this
the remains of the custom of punalua among their remote ancestors.
Undoubtedly there was a time among them when own sisters went into the
marriage relation on the basis of their sisterhood; the husband of one
being the husband of all, but not the only husband, for other males
were joint husbands with him in the group. After the punaluan family
become the husband of all her sisters if he chose to claim it. It may
with reason be regarded as a genuine survival of the ancient punaluan
custom.

Other traces of this family among the tribes of mankind might be cited
from historical works, tending to show not only its ancient existence,
but its wide prevalence as well. It is unnecessary, however, to extend
these citations, because the antecedent existence of the punaluan
family among the ancestors of all the tribes who possess, or did
possess, the Turanian system of consanguinity can be deduced from the
system itself.

II. _Origin of the Organisation into Gentes._

It has before been suggested that the time when this institution
originated, was the period of savagery, firstly, because it is found in
complete development in the Lower Status of barbarism; and secondly,
because it is found in partial development in the Status of savagery.
Moreover, the germ of the gens is found as plainly in the Australian
classes as in the Hawaiian punaluan group. The gentes are also found
among the Australians, based upon the classes, with the apparent manner
of their organization out of them. Such a remarkable institution as the
gens would not be expected to spring into existence complete, or to
grow out of nothing, that is, without a foundation previously formed
by natural growth. Its birth must be sought in pre-existing elements
of society, and its maturity would be expected to occur long after its
origination.

Two of the fundamental rules of the gens in its archaic form are found
in the Australian classes, namely, the prohibition of intermarriage
between brothers and sisters, and descent in the female line. The last
fact is made entirely evident when the gens appeared, for the children
are then found in the gens of their mothers. The natural adaptation
of the classes to give birth to the gens is sufficiently obvious to
suggest the probability that it actually so occurred. Moreover, this
probability is strengthened by the fact that the gens is here found in
connection with an antecedent and more archaic organization, which was
still the unit of a social system, a place belonging of right to the
gens.

Turning now to the Hawaiian punaluan group, the same elements are
found containing the germ of the gens. It is confined, however, to the
female branch of the custom, where several sisters, own and collateral,
shared their husbands in common. These sisters, with their children
and descendants through females, furnish the exact membership of a
gens of the archaic type. Descent would necessarily be traced through
females, because the paternity of children was not ascertainable with
certainty. As soon as this special form of marriage in the group
became an established institution, the foundation for a gens existed.
It then required an exercise of intelligence to turn this natural
punaluan group into an organization, restricted to these mothers,
their children, and descendants in the female line. The Hawaiians,
although this group existed among them, did not rise to the conception
of a gens. But to precisely such a group as this, resting upon the
sisterhood of the mothers, or to the similar Australian group, resting
upon the same principle of union, the origin of the gens must be
ascribed. It took this group as it found it, and organized certain of
its members, with certain of their posterity, into a gens on the basis
of kin.

To explain the exact manner in which the gens originated is, of course,
impossible. The facts and circumstances belong to a remote antiquity.
But the gens may be traced back to a condition of ancient society
calculated to bring it into existence. This is all I have attempted
to do. It belongs in its origin to a low stage of human development,
and to a very ancient condition of society; though later in time than
the first appearance of the punaluan family. It is quite evident that
it sprang up in this family, which consisted of a group of persons
coincident substantially with the membership of a gens.

The influence of the gentile organization upon ancient society was
conservative and elevating. After it had become fully developed and
expanded over large areas, and after time enough had elapsed to work
its full influence upon society, wives became scarce in place of
their former abundance, because it tended to contract the size of the
punaluan group, and finally to overthrow it. The syndyasmian family was
gradually produced within the punaluan, after the gentile organization
became predominant over ancient society. The intermediate stages of
progress are not well ascertained; but, given the punaluan family in
the Status of savagery, and the syndyasmian family in the Lower Status
of barbarism, and the fact of progress from one into the other may
be deduced with reasonable certainty. It was after the latter family
began to appear, and punaluan groups to disappear, that wives came to
be sought by purchase and by capture. Without discussing the evidence
still accessible, it is a plain inference that the gentile organization
was the efficient cause of the final overthrow of the punaluan family,
and of the gradual reduction of the stupendous conjugal system of the
period of savagery. While it originated in the punaluan group, as we
must suppose, it nevertheless carried society beyond and above its
plane.

III. _The Turanian or Ganowánian System of Consanguinity._

This system and the gentile organization, when in its archaic form,
are usually found together. They are not mutually dependent; but they
probably appeared not far apart in the order of human progress. But
systems of consanguinity and the several forms of the family stand in
direct relations. The family represents an active principle. It is
never stationary, but advances from a lower to a higher form as society
advances from a lower to a higher condition, and finally passes out of
one form into another of higher grade. Systems of consanguinity, on the
contrary, are passive; recording the progress made by the family at
long intervals apart, and only changing radically when the family has
radically changed.

The Turanian system could not have been formed unless punaluan marriage
and the punaluan family had existed at the time. In a society wherein
by general usage several sisters were married in a group to each
other’s husbands, and several brothers in a group to each other’s
wives, the conditions were present for the creation of the Turanian
system. Any system formed to express the actual relationships as they
existed in such a family would, of necessity, be the Turanian; and
would, of itself, demonstrate the existence of such a family when it
was formed.

It is now proposed to take up this remarkable system as it still exists
in the Turanian and Ganowánian families, and offer it in evidence
to prove the existence of the punaluan family at the time it was
established. It has come down to the present time on two continents
after the marriage customs in which it originated had disappeared, and
after the family had passed out of the punaluan into the syndyasmian
form.

In order to appreciate the evidence it will be necessary to examine
the details of the system. That of the Seneca-Iroquois will be used as
typical on the part of the Ganowánian tribes of America, and that of
the Tamil people of South India on the part of the Turanian tribes of
Asia. These forms, which are substantially identical through upwards
of two hundred relationships of the same person, will be found in
a Table at the end of this chapter. In a previous work[469] I have
presented in full the system of consanguinity of some seventy American
Indian tribes; and among Asiatic tribes and nations that of the Tamil,
Telugu, and Canarese people of South India, among all of whom the
system, as given in the Table, is now in practical daily use. There are
diversities in the systems of the different tribes and nations, but the
radical features are constant. All alike salute by kin, but with this
difference, that among the Tamil people where the person addressed is
younger than the speaker, the term of relationship must be used; but
when older the option is given to salute by kin or by the personal
name. On the contrary, among the American aborigines, the address
must always be by the term of relationship. They use the system in
addresses because it is a system of consanguinity and affinity. It was
also the means by which each individual in the ancient gentes was able
to trace his connection with every member of his gens until monogamy
broke up the Turanian system. It will be found, in many cases, that the
relationship of the same person to _Ego_ is different as the sex of
_Ego_ is changed. For this reason it was found necessary to state the
question twice, once with a male speaking, and again with a female.
Notwithstanding the diversities it created, the system is logical
throughout. To exhibit its character, it will be necessary to pass
through the several lines as was done in the Malayan system. The
Seneca-Iroquois will be used.

The relationships of grandfather (_Hoc′-sote_), and grandmother
(_Oc′-sote_), and of grandson (_Ha-yä′-da_), and granddaughter
(_Ka-yä′-da_), are the most remote recognized either in the ascending
or descending series. Ancestors and descendants above and below these,
fall into the same categories respectively.

The relationships of brother and sister are conceived in the twofold
form of elder and younger, and not in the abstract; and there are
special terms for each, as follow:

    Elder Brother,   _Ha′-je_.     Elder Sister,   _Ah′-jē_.
    Younger Brother, _Ha′-gă_.     Younger Sister, _Ka′-gă_.

These terms are used by the males and females, and are applied to
all such brothers or sisters as are older or younger than the person
speaking. In Tamil there are two sets of terms for these relationships,
but they are now used indiscriminately by both sexes.

First Collateral Line. With myself a male, and speaking as a Seneca,
my brother’s son and daughter are my son and daughter (_Ha-ah′-wuk_,
and _Ka-ah′-wuk_), each of them calling me father (_Hä′-nih_). This
is the first indicative feature of the system. It places my brother’s
children in the same category with my own. They are my children as well
as his. My brother’s grandchildren are my grandsons and granddaughters
(_Ha-yä′-da_, and _Ka-yä′-da_, singular), each of them calling me
grandfather (_Hoc′-sote_). The relationships here given are those
recognized and applied; none others are known.

Certain relationships will be distinguished as indicative. They usually
control those that precede and follow. When they agree in the systems
of different tribes, and even of different families of mankind, as in
the Turanian and Ganowánian, they establish their fundamental identity.

In the female branch of this line, myself still a male, my sister’s
son and daughter are my nephew and niece (_Ha-yă′-wan-da_, and
_Ka-yă′-wan-da_), each of them calling me uncle (_Hoc-no′-seh_). This
is a second indicative feature. It restricts the relationships of
nephew and niece to the children of a man’s sisters, own or collateral.
The children of this nephew and niece are my grandchildren as before,
each of them applying to me the proper correlative.

With myself a female, a part of these relationships are reversed. My
brother’s son and daughter are my nephew and niece (_Ha-soh′-neh_, and
_Ka-soh′-neh_), each of them calling me aunt (_Ah-ga′-huc_). It will
be noticed that the terms for nephew and niece used by the males are
different from those used by the females. The children of these nephews
and nieces are my grandchildren. In the female branch, my sister’s son
and daughter are my son and daughter, each of them calling me mother
(_Noh-yeh′_), and their children are my grandchildren, each of them
calling me grandmother (_Oc′-sote_).

The wives of these sons and nephews are my daughters-in-law (_Ka′-sä_),
and the husbands of these daughters and nieces are my sons-in-law
(_Oc-na′-hose_, each term singular), and they apply to me the proper
correlative.

Second Collateral Line. In the male branch of this line, on the
father’s side, and irrespective of the sex of _Ego_, my father’s
brother is my father, and calls me his son or daughter as I am a male
or a female. Third indicative feature. All the brothers of a father are
placed in the relation of fathers. His son and daughter are my brother
and sister, elder or younger, and I apply to them the same terms I use
to designate own brothers and sisters. Fourth indicative feature. It
places the children of brothers in the relationship of brothers and
sisters. The children of these brothers, myself a male, are my sons
and daughters, and their children are my grandchildren; whilst the
children of these sisters are my nephews and nieces, and the children
of the latter are my grandchildren. But with myself a female the
children of these brothers are my nephews and nieces, the children of
these sisters are my sons and daughters, and their children, alike are
my grandchildren. It is thus seen that the classification in the first
collateral line is carried into the second, as it is into the third and
more remote as far as consanguinei can be traced.

My father’s sister is my aunt, and calls me her nephew if I am a male.
Fifth indicative feature. The relationship of aunt is restricted to
the sisters of my father, and to the sisters of such other persons
as stand to me in the relation of a father, to the exclusion of the
sisters of my mother. My father’s sister’s children are my cousins
(_Ah-gare′-seh_, singular), each of them calling me cousin. With myself
a male, the children of my male cousins are my sons and daughters,
and of my female cousins are my nephews and nieces; but with myself a
female these last relationships are reversed. All the children of the
latter are my grandchildren.

On the mother’s side, myself a male, my mother’s brother is my uncle,
and calls me his nephew. Sixth indicative feature. The relationship of
uncle is restricted to the brothers of my mother, own and collateral,
to the exclusion of my father’s brothers. His children are my cousins,
the children of my male cousins are my sons and daughters, of my female
cousins are my nephews and nieces; but with myself a female these
last relationships are reversed, the children of all alike are my
grandchildren.

In the female branch of the same line my mother’s sister is my mother.
Seventh indicative feature. All of several sisters, own and collateral,
are placed in the relation of a mother to the children of each other.
My mother’s sister’s children are my brothers and sisters, elder or
younger. Eighth indicative feature. It establishes the relationship of
brother and sister among the children of sisters. The children of these
brothers are my sons and daughters, of these sisters are my nephews
and nieces; and the children of the latter are my grandchildren. With
myself a female the same relationships are reversed as in previous
cases.

Each of the wives of these several brothers, and of these several male
cousins is my sister-in-law (_Ah-ge-ah′-ne-ah_), each of them calling
me brother-in-law (_Ha-yă′-o_). The precise meaning of the former
term is not known. Each of the husbands of these several sisters and
female cousins is my brother-in-law, and they all apply to me the
proper correlative. Traces of the punaluan custom remain here and
there in the marriage relationship of the American aborigines, namely,
between _Ego_ and the wives of several brothers and the husbands
of several sisters. In Mandan my brother’s wife is my wife, and in
Pawnee and Arickaree the same. In Crow my husband’s brother’s wife is
“my comrade” (_Bot-ze′-no-pä-che_), in Creek my “present occupant”
(_Chu-hu′-cho-wä_), and in Munsee “my friend” (_Nain-jose′_). In
Winnebago and Achaotinne she is “my sister.” My wife’s sister’s
husband, in some tribes is “my brother,” in others my “brother-in-law,”
and in Creek “my little separater” (_Un-kä-pu′-che_), whatever that may
mean.

Third Collateral Line. As the relationships in the several branches of
this line are the same as in the corresponding branches of the second,
with the exception of one additional ancestor, it will be sufficient
to present one branch out of the four. My father’s father’s brother is
my grandfather, and calls me his grandson. This is a ninth indicative
feature, and the last of the number. It places these brothers in the
relation of grandfathers, and thus prevents collateral ascendants
from passing beyond this relationship. The principle which merges the
collateral lines in the lineal line works upward as well as downward.
The son of this grandfather is my father; his children are my brothers
and sisters; the children of these brothers are my sons and daughters,
of these sisters are my nephews and nieces; and their children are my
grandchildren. With myself a female the same relationships are reversed
as in previous cases. Moreover, the correlative term is applied in
every instance.

Fourth Collateral Line. It will be sufficient, for the same reason,
to give but a single branch of this line. My grandfather’s father’s
brother is my grandfather; his son is also my grandfather; the son
of the latter is my father; his son and daughter are my brother and
sister, elder or younger; and their children and grandchildren follow
in the same relationships to _Ego_ as in other cases. In the fifth
collateral line the classification is the same in its several branches
as in the corresponding branches of the second, with the exception of
additional ancestors.

It follows, from the nature of the system, that a knowledge of
the numerical degrees of consanguinity is essential to a proper
classification of kindred. But to a native Indian accustomed to its
daily use the apparent maze of relationships presents no difficulty.

Among the remaining marriage relationships there are terms in
Seneca-Iroquois for father-in-law (_Oc-na′-hose_), for a wife’s father,
and (_Hä-gä′-sä_) for a husband’s father. The former term is also
used to designate a son-in-law, thus showing it to be reciprocal.
There are also terms for step-father and step-mother (_Hoc′-no-ese_)
and (_Oc′-no-ese_), and for step-son and step-daughter (_Ha′-no_
and _Ka′-no_). In a number of tribes two fathers-in-law and two
mothers-in-law are related, and there are terms to express the
connection. The opulence of the nomenclature, although made necessary
by the elaborate discriminations of the system, is nevertheless
remarkable. For full details of the Seneca-Iroquois and Tamil system
reference is made to the Table. Their identity is apparent on bare
inspection. It shows not only the prevalence of punaluan marriage
amongst their remote ancestors when the system was formed, but also
the powerful impression which this form of marriage made upon ancient
society. It is, at the same time, one of the most extraordinary
applications of the natural logic of the human mind to the facts of the
social system preserved in the experience of mankind.

That the Turanian and Ganowánian system was engrafted upon a previous
Malayan, or one like it in all essential respects, is now demonstrated.
In about one-half of all the relationships named, the two are
identical. If those are examined, in which the Seneca and Tamil differ
from the Hawaiian, it will be found that the difference is upon those
relationships which depended on the intermarriage or non-intermarriage
of brothers and sisters. In the former two, for example, my sister’s
son is my nephew, but in the latter he is my son. The two relationships
express the difference between the consanguine and punaluan families.
The change of relationships which resulted from substituting punaluan
in the place of consanguine marriages turns the Malayan into the
Turanian system. But it may be asked why the Hawaiians, who had the
punaluan family, did not reform their system of consanguinity in
accordance therewith? The answer has elsewhere been given, but it may
be repeated. The form of the family keeps in advance of the system.
In Polynesia it was punaluan while the system remained Malayan; in
America it was syndyasmian while the system remained Turanian; and in
Europe and Western Asia it became monogamian while the system seems to
have remained Turanian for a time, but it then fell into decadence,
and was succeeded by the Aryan. Furthermore, although the family has
passed through five forms, but three distinct systems of consanguinity
were created, so far as is now known. It required an organic change
in society attaining unusual dimensions to change essentially an
established system of consanguinity. I think it will be found that the
organization into gentes was sufficiently influential and sufficiently
universal to change the Malayan system into the Turanian; and that
monogamy, when fully established in the more advanced branches of
the human family, was sufficient, with the influence of property, to
overthrow the Turanian system and substitute the Aryan.

It remains to explain the origin of such Turanian relationships
as differ from the Malayan. Punaluan marriages and the gentile
organizations form the basis of the explanation.

I. All the children of my several brothers, own and collateral, myself
a male, are my sons and daughters.

Reasons: Speaking as a Seneca, all the wives of my several brothers
are mine as well as theirs. We are now speaking of the time when the
system was formed. It is the same in the Malayan, where the reasons are
assigned.

II. All the children of my several sisters, own and collateral, myself
a male, are my nephews and nieces.

Reasons: Under the gentile organization these females, by a law of the
gens, cannot be my wives. Their children, therefore, can no longer be
my children, but stand to me in a more remote relationship; whence the
new relationships of nephew and niece. This differs from the Malayan.

III. With myself a female, the children of my several brothers, own and
collateral, are my nephews and nieces.

Reasons, as in II. This also differs from the Malayan.

IV. With myself a female, the children of my several sisters, own and
collateral, and of my several female cousins, are my sons and daughters.

Reasons: All their husbands are my husbands as well. In strictness
these children are my step-children, and are so described in Ojibwa
and several other Algonkin tribes; but in the Seneca-Iroquois, and in
Tamil, following the ancient classification, they are placed in the
category of my sons and daughters, for reasons given in the Malayan.

V. All the children of these sons and daughters are my grandchildren.

Reason: They are the children of my sons and daughters.

VI. All the children of these nephews and nieces are my grandchildren.

Reason: These were the relationships of the same persons under the
Malayan system, which presumptively preceded the Turanian. No new one
having been invented, the old would remain.

VII. All the brothers of my father, own and collateral, are my fathers.

Reason: They are the husbands of my mother. It is the same in Malayan.

VIII. All the sisters of my father, own and collateral, are my aunts.

Reason: Under the gentile organization neither can be the wife of my
father; wherefore the previous relationship of mother is inadmissible.
A new relationship, therefore, was required: whence that of aunt.

IX. All the brothers of my mother, own and collateral, are my uncles.

Reasons: They are no longer the husbands of my mother, and must stand
to me in a more remote relationship than that of father: whence the new
relationship of uncle.

X. All the sisters of my mother, own and collateral, are my mothers.

Reasons, as in IV.

XI. All the children of my father’s brothers, and all the children of
my mother’s sisters, own and collateral, are my brothers and sisters.

Reasons: It is the same in Malayan, and for reasons there given.

XII. All the children of my several uncles and all the children of my
several aunts, own and collateral, are my male and female cousins.

Reasons: Under the gentile organization all these uncles and aunts
are excluded from the marriage relation with my father and mother;
wherefore their children cannot stand to me in the relation of brothers
and sisters, as in the Malayan, but must be placed in one more remote:
whence the new relationship of cousin.

XIII. In Tamil all the children of my male cousins, myself a male, are
my nephews and nieces, and all the children of my female cousins are
my sons and daughters. This is the exact reverse of the rule among the
Seneca-Iroquois. It tends to show that among the Tamil people, when the
Turanian system came in, all my female cousins were my wives, whilst
the wives of my male cousins were not. It is a singular fact that the
deviation on these relationships is the only one of any importance
between the two systems in the relationships to _Ego_ of some two
hundred persons.

XIV. All the brothers and sisters of my grandfather and of my
grandmother are my grandfathers and grandmothers.

Reason: It is the same in Malayan, and for the reasons there given.

It is now made additionally plain that both the Turanian and Ganowánian
systems, which are identical, supervened upon an original Malayan
system; and that the latter must have prevailed generally in Asia
before the Malayan migration to the Islands of the Pacific. Moreover,
there are good grounds for believing that the system was transmitted
in the Malayan form to the ancestors of the three families, with the
streams of the blood, from a common Asiatic source, and afterward,
modified into its present form by the remote ancestors of the Turanian
and Ganowánian families.

The principal relationships of the Turanian system have now been
explained in their origin, and are found to be those which would
actually exist in the punaluan family as near as the parentage of
children could be known. The system explains itself as an organic
growth, and since it could not have originated without an adequate
cause, the inference becomes legitimate as well as necessary that it
was created by punaluan families. It will be noticed, however, that
several of the marriage relationships have been changed.

The system treats all brothers as the husbands of each other’s
wives, and all sisters as the wives of each other’s husbands, and as
intermarried in a group. At the time the system was formed, wherever
a man found a brother, own or collateral, and those in that relation
were numerous, in the wife of that brother he found an additional wife.
In like manner, wherever a woman found a sister, own or collateral,
and those in that relation were equally numerous, in the husband of
that sister she found an additional husband. The brotherhood of the
husbands and the sisterhood of the wives formed the basis of the
relation. It is fully expressed by the Hawaiian custom of _pŭnalŭa_.
Theoretically, the family of the period was coextensive with the
group united in the marriage relation; but, practically, it must
have subdivided into a number of smaller families for convenience of
habitation and subsistence. The brothers, by tens and twelves, of the
Britons, married to each other’s wives, would indicate the size of an
ordinary subdivision of a punaluan group. Communism in living seems
to have originated in the necessities of the consanguine family, to
have been continued in the punaluan, and to have been transmitted to
the syndyasmian among the American aborigines, with whom it remained
a practice down to the epoch of their discovery. Punaluan marriage is
now unknown among them, but the system of consanguinity it created has
survived the customs in which it originated. The plan of family life
and of habitation among savage tribes has been imperfectly studied.
A knowledge of their usages in these respects and of their mode of
subsistence would throw a strong light upon the questions under
consideration.

Two forms of the family have now been explained in their origin by two
parallel systems of consanguinity. The proofs seem to be conclusive.
It gives the starting point of human society after mankind had
emerged from a still lower condition and entered the organism of the
consanguine family. From this first form to the second the transition
was natural; a development from a lower into a higher social condition
through observation and experience. It was a result of the improvable
mental and moral qualities which belong to the human species. The
consanguine and punaluan families represent the substance of human
progress through the greater part of the period of savagery. Although
the second was a great improvement upon the first, it was still
very distant from the monogamian. An impression may be formed by a
comparison of the several forms of the family, of the slow rate of
progress in savagery, where the means of advancement were slight,
and the obstacles were formidable. Ages upon ages of substantially
stationary life, with advance and decline, undoubtedly marked the
course of events; but the general movement of society was from a
lower to a higher condition, otherwise mankind would have remained in
savagery. It is something to find an assured initial point from which
mankind started on their great and marvelous career of progress, even
though so near the bottom of the scale, and though limited to a form of
the family so peculiar as the consanguine.

  _Comparative Table of the System of Relationship of the Seneca-Iroquois
  Indians of New York, and of the People of South-India speaking the
  Tamil Dialect of the Drâvidian Language._ _En = my._
  _otm_ = Older than myself _ytm_ = Younger than myself
  _ms_ = Male speaking  _fs_ = Female speaking
   ———————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————+—————————————————————————————————————————+—————————————————————————————————————————————————
                                                                  │Relationship in                          │
              Description of Persons.                             │Seneca-Iroquois.       Translation.      │ Relationship in Tamil.       Translation.
   ———————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————+—————————————————————————————————————————+—————————————————————————————————————————————————
    1 My great-grandfather’s father                               │ hoc´-sote            My grandfather     │ En muppáddan                    My 3d grandfather
    2  ”   ”        ”        mother                               │ oc´-sote              ” grandmother     │ ”  muppáddi                      ”  ” grandmother
    3  ” great-grandfather                                        │ hoc´-sote             ” grandfather     │ ”  páddan                        ” 2d grandfather
    4  ”   ” grandmother                                          │ oc´-sote              ” grandmother     │ ”  páddi                         ”  ” grandmother
    5  ” grandfather                                              │ hoc´-sote             ” grandfather     │ ”  páddan                        ” grandfather
    6  ” grandmother                                              │ oc´-sote              ” grandmother     │ ”  páddi                         ” grandmother
    7  ” father                                                   │ hä´-nih               ” father          │ ”  takkáppăn                     ” father
    8  ” mother                                                   │ no-yeh´               ” mother          │ ”  táy                           ” mother
    9  ” son                                                      │ há-ah´-wuk            ” son             │ ”  măkăn                         ” son
   10  ” daughter                                                 │ ka-ah´-wuk            ” daughter        │ ”  măkăl                         ” daughter
   11  ” grandson                                                 │ ha-yä´-da             ” grandson        │ ”  pêrăn                         ” grandson
   12  ” granddaughter                                            │ ka-yä´-da             ” granddaughter   │ ”  pêrtti                        ” granddaughter
   13  ” great-grandson                                           │ ha-yä´-da             ” grandson        │ ”  irandám pêrăn                 ” 2d grandson
   14  ” great-granddaughter                                      │ ka-yä´-da             ” granddaughter   │ ”     ”    pêrtti                ”  ” granddaughter
   15  ” great-grandson’s son                                     │ ha-yä´-da             ” grandson        │ ”  mŭndam pêrăn                  ” 3d grandson
   16  ”   ”       ”      daughter                                │ ka-yä´-da             ” granddaughter   │ ”     ”   pêrtti                 ”  ” granddaughter
   17  ” elder brother                                            │ hä´-je                ” elder brother   │ ”  tamaiyăn, b annăn             ” elder brother
   18  ”   ”   sister                                             │ ah´-je                ”    ”  sister    │ ”  akkàrl, b tămăkay             ”   ”   sister
   19  ” younger brother                                          │ ha´-gă                ” younger brother │ ”  tambi                         ” younger brother
   20  ”    ”    sister                                           │ ka´-gă                ”    ”    sister  │ ”  tangaichchi, b tangay         ”    ”    sister
   21  ” brothers                                                 │ da-yä-guä-dan´-no-dä  ” brothers        │ ”  săkothăree                    ” brothers (_Sanskrit_)
   22  ” sisters                                                  │       ”               ” sisters         │ ”  săkothărekăl                  ” sisters      ”
   23  ” brother’s son                (_ms_)                      │ ha-ah´-wuk            ” son             │ ”  măkăn                         ” son
   24  ”    ”      son’s wife           ”                         │ ka´-säh´              ” daughter-in-law │ ”  mărŭmăkăl                     ” dau’ter-in-law & niece
   25  ”    ”      daughter             ”                         │ ka-ah´-wuk            ” daughter        │ ”  măkăl                         ” daughter
   26  ”    ”      daughter’s husband   ”                         │ oc-na´-hosc           ” son-in-law      │ ”  mărŭmăkăn                     ” son-in-law & nephew
   27  ”    ”      grandson             ”                         │ ha-yä´-da             ” grandson        │ ”  pêrăn                         ” grandson
   28  ”    ”      granddaughter        ”                         │ ka-yä´-da             ” granddaughter   │ ”  pêrtti                        ” granddaughter
   29  ”    ”      great-grandson       ”                         │ ha-yä´-da             ” grandson        │ ”  irandám pêrăn                 ” 2d grandson
   30  ”    ”      great-granddaughter  ”                         │ ka-yä´-da             ” granddaughter   │ ”     ”    pêrtti                ”  ” granddaughter
   31  ” sister’s son                   ”                         │ ha-yă-´-wan-da        ” nephew          │ ”  mărŭmăkăn                     ” nephew
   32  ”    ”     son’s wife            ”                         │ ka´-sä                ” daughter-in-law │ ”  măkăl                         ” daughter
   33  ”    ”     daughter              ”                         │ ka-yă´-wan-da         ” niece           │ ”  mărŭmăkăl                     ” niece
   34  ”    ”     daughter’s husband    ”                         │ oc-na´-hosc           ” son-in-law      │ ”  măkăn                         ” son
   35  ”    ”     grandson              ”                         │ ha-yä´-da             ” grandson        │ ”  pêrăn                         ” grandson
   36  ”    ”     granddaughter         ”                         │ ka-yä´-da             ” granddaughter   │ ”  pêrtti                        ” granddaughter
   37  ”    ”     great-grandson        ”                         │ ha-yä´-da             ” grandson        │ ”  irandám pêrăn                 ” 2d grandson
   38  ”    ”     great-granddaughter   ”                         │ ka-yä´-da             ” granddaughter   │ ”  irandám pertti                ” 2d granddaughter
   39  ” brother’s son               (_fs_)                       │ ha-soh′-neh           My nephew         │ En mărŭmăkăn                     ” nephew
   40  ”     ”     son’s wife          ”                          │ ka′-sä                ” daughter-in-law │ ”  măkăl                         ” daughter
   41  ”     ”     daughter            ”                          │ ka-soh′-neh           ” niece           │ ”  mărŭmăkăl                     ” niece
   42  ”     ”     daughter’s husband  ”                          │ oc-na′-hose           ” son-in-law      │ ”  măkan                         ” son
   43  ”     ”     grandson            ”                          │ ha-yä′-da             ” grandson        │ ”  pêrăn                         ” grandson
   44  ”     ”     granddaughter       ”                          │ ka-yä′-da             ” granddaughter   │ ”  pêrtti                        ” granddaughter
   45  ”     ”     great-grandson      ”                          │ ha-yä′-da             ” grandson        │ ”  irandám pêrăn                 ” 2d grandson
   46  ”     ”     great-granddaughter ”                          │ ka-yä′-da             ” granddaughter   │ ”     ”    pêrtti                ”  ” granddaughter
   47  ” sister’s son                  ”                          │ ha-ah′-wuk            ” son             │ ”  măkăn                         ” son
   48  ”    ”     son’s wife           ”                          │ ka′-sä                ” daughter-in-law │ ”  mărŭmăkăl                     ” dau’ter-in-law & niece
   49  ”    ”     daughter             ”                          │ ka-ah′-wuk            ” daughter        │ ”  măkăl                         ” daughter
   50  ”    ”     daughter’s husband   ”                          │ oc-na′-hose           ” son-in-law      │ ”  măkăn                         ” son
   51  ”    ”     grandson             ”                          │ ha-yä′-da             ” grandson        │ ”  pêrăn                         ” grandson
   52  ”    ”     granddaughter        ”                          │ ka-yä′-da             ” granddaughter   │ ”  pêrtti                        ” granddaughter
   53  ”    ”     great-grandson       ”                          │ ha-yä′-da             ” grandson        │ ”  irandám pêrăn                 ” 2d grandson
   54  ”    ”     great-granddaughter  ”                          │ ka-yä′-da             ” granddaughter   │ ”     ”    pêrtti                ”  ” granddaughter
   55  ” father’s brother                                         │ hä′-nih               ” father          │ ”  periya tăkkăppăn              ” great-father (_if older_)
                                                                  │                                         │ ”  seríya                        ” little-father (_if younger_)
   56  ”    ”     brother’s wife                                  │ uc-no′-ese            ” step-mother     │ ”  táy                           ” mother (_th’n my fath’r_)
   57  ”    ”         ”     son (_otm_)                           │ hä′-je                ” elder brother   │ ”  tămaiyăn                      ” elder brother
   58  ”    ”         ”      ”  (_ytm_)                           │ ha′-gă                ” younger brother │ ”  tambi                         ” younger brother
   59  ”    ”         ”     son’s wife                            │ ah-ge-ah′-ne-ah       ” sister-in-law   │ ”  maittumi (o.) a[n:][n:]i (y.) ” cousin & sister-in-law
   60  ”    ”         ”     daughter (_otm_)                      │ ah′-je                ” elder sister    │ ”  akkarl b, tamakay             ” elder sister
   61  ”    ”         ”        ” (_ytm_)                          │ ka′-gă                ” younger sister  │ ”  tangaichchi b, tangay         ” younger sister
   62  ”    ”         ”     daughter’s husband                    │ ha-yă′-o              ” brother-in-law  │ ”  măittŭnăn                     ” broth’r-in-law & cousin
   63  ”    ”         ”     son’s son       (_ms_)                │ ha-ah′-wuk            ” son             │ ”  măkăn                         ” son
   64  ”    ”         ”      ”    ”         (_fs_)                │ ha-soh′-neh           ” nephew          │ ”  mărŭmăkăn                     ” nephew
   65  ”    ”         ”      ”   daughter   (_ms_)                │ ka-ah′-wuk            ” daughter        │ ”  măkăl                         ” daughter
   66  ”    ”         ”      ”      ”       (_fs_)                │ ka-soh′-neh           ” niece           │ ”  mărŭmăkăl                     ” niece
   67  ”    ”         ”   daughter’s son    (_ms_)                │ ha-yă′-wän-da         ” nephew          │ ”  mărŭmăkăn                     ” nephew
   68  ”    ”         ”         ”     ”     (_fs_)                │ ha-ah′-wuk            ” son             │ ”  măkăn                         ” son
   69  ”    ”         ”         ”  daughter (_ms_)                │ ka-yă′-wän-da         ” niece           │ ”  mărŭmăkăl                     ” niece
   70  ”    ”         ”         ”       ”   (_fs_)                │ ka-ah′-wuk            ” daughter        │ ”  măkăl                         ” daughter
   71  ”    ”         ”     great-grandson                        │ ha-yä′-da             ” grandson        │ ”  pêrăn                         ” grandson
   72  ”    ”         ”     great-granddaughter                   │ ka-yä′-da             ” granddaughter   │ ”  pêrtti                        ” granddaughter
   73  ” father’s sister                                          │ ah-ga′-huc            ” aunt            │ ”  attai                         ” aunt
   74  ”    ”     sister’s husband                                │ hoc-no′-ese           ” step-father     │ ”  máman                         ” uncle
   75  ”    ”        ”     son           (_ms_)                   │ ah-găre′-seh          ” cousin          │ ”  attàn b, măittŭnăn            ” cousin
   76  ”    ”        ”      ”            (_fs_)                   │ ah-găre′-seh          ” cousin          │ ”  măchchăn                      ”   ”
   77  ”    ”        ”     son’s wife                             │ ah-ge-ah′-ne-ah       ” sister-in-law   │ ”  tangay                        ” younger sister
   78  ”    ”        ”     daughter      (_ms_)                   │ ah-găre′-seh          ” cousin          │ ”  măittuni                      ” cousin
   79  ”    ”        ”        ”          (_fs_)                   │ ah-găre′-seh          ” cousin          │ ”  măchchi b, măchchărl          ”   ”
   80  ”    ”        ”     daughter’s husband                     │ ha-yă-o′              ” brother-in-law  │ ”  a[n:][n:]an (o.) tambi (y.)   ” elder or younger bro’r
   81  ” father’s sister’s son’s son            (_ms_)            │ ha-ah′-wuk           My son             │ En mărŭmăkăn                     ” nephew
   82  ”   ”        ”       ”     ”             (_fs_)            │ ha-soh′-neh           ” nephew          │ ”  măkăn                         ” son
   83  ”   ”        ”       ”    daughter       (_ms_)            │ ka-ah′-wuk            ” daughter        │ ”  mărŭmăkăl                     ” niece
   84  ”   ”        ”       ”     ”             (_fs_)            │ ka-soh′-neh           ” niece           │ ”  măkăl                         ” daughter
   85  ”   ”        ”      daughter’s son       (_ms_)            │ ha-ya′-wän-da         ” nephew          │ ”  măkăn                         ” son
   86  ”   ”        ”       ”          ”        (_fs_)            │ ha-ah′-wuk            ” son             │ ”  mărŭmăkăn                     ” nephew
   87  ”   ”        ”       ”         daughter  (_ms_)            │ ka-ya′-wän-da         ” niece           │ ”  măkăl                         ” daughter
   88  ”   ”        ”       ”          ”        (_fs_)            │ ka-ah′-wuk            ” daughter        │ ”  mărŭmăkăl                     ” niece
   89  ”   ”        ”       great-grandson                        │ ha-yä′-da             ” grandson        │ ”  pêrăn                         ” grandson
   90  ”   ”        ”       great-granddaughter                   │ ka-yä′-da             ” granddaughter   │ ”  pêrtti                        ” granddaughter
   91  ” mother’s brother                                         │ hoc-no′-seh           ” uncle           │ ”  mămăn                         ” uncle
   92  ”   ”      brother’s wife                                  │ ah-ga-na-ah           ” aunt-mother     │ ”  măme                          ” aunt
   93  ”   ”         ”      son                 (_ms_)            │ ah-gare′-seh          ” cousin          │ ”  măittŭnăn                     ” cousin
   94  ”   ”         ”       ”                  (_fs_)            │ ah-gare′-seh          ” cousin          │ ”  măchchăn                      ”    ”
   95  ”   ”         ”      son’s wife                            │ ah-ge-ah′-ne-ah       ” sister-in-law   │ ”  tăngay                        ” younger sister
   96  ”   ”         ”      daughter            (_ms_)            │ ah-găre′-seh          ” cousin          │ ”  măittŭni                      ” cousin
   97  ”   ”         ”          ”               (_fs_)            │ ah-găre′-seh          ” cousin          │ ”  măchchärl                     ”    ”
   98  ”   ”         ”      daughter’s husband                    │ ha-yă′-o              ” brother-in-law  │ ”  a[n:][n:]an (o.) tambi (y.)   ” elder or younger bro’r
   99  ”   ”         ”      son’s son           (_ms_)            │ ha-ah′-wuk            ” son             │ ”  mărŭmăkăn                     ” nephew
  100  ”   ”         ”        ”    ”            (_fs_)            │ ha-soh′-neh           ” nephew          │ ”  măkăn                         ” son
  101  ”   ”         ”        ”   daughter      (_ms_)            │ ka-ah′-wuk            ” daughter        │ ”  mărŭmăkăl                     ” niece
  102  ”   ”         ”        ”      ”          (_fs_)            │ ka-soh′-neh           ” niece           │ ”  măkăl                         ” daughter
  103  ”   ”         ”      daughter’s son      (_ms_)            │ ha-yă′-wän-da         ” nephew          │ ”  măkăn                         ” son
  104  ”   ”         ”         ”        ”       (_fs_)            │ ha-ah′-wuk            ” son             │ ”  mărŭmăkăn                     ” nephew
  105  ”   ”         ”         ”       daughter (_ms_)            │ ka-yă′-wän-da         ” niece           │ ”  măkăl                         ” daughter
  106  ”   ”         ”         ”          ”     (_fs_)            │ ka-ah′-wuk            ” daughter        │ ”  mărŭmăkăl                     ” niece
  107  ”   ”         ”      great-grandson                        │ ha-yä′-da             ” grandson        │ ”  pêrăn                         ” grandson
  108  ”   ”         ”      great-granddaughter                   │ ka-yä′-da             ” granddaughter   │ ”  pêrtti                        ” granddaughter
  109  ” mother’s sister                                          │ no-yeh′               ” mother          │ ”  pêriyă tăy (_if older than_,) ” mother, great or little
                                                                  │                                         │ ”  sĕriyă ” (_if y’r myself_)
  110  ”   ”      sister’s husband                                │ hoc-no′-ese           ” step-father     │ ”  takkăppăn (P. or S.)          ” father, ”  ”
  111  ”   ”         ”     son              (_otm_)               │ hä′-je                ” elder brother   │ ”  tămăiyăn, b, a[n:][n:]an      ” elder brother
  112  ”   ”         ”      ”               (_ytm_)               │ ha′-gă                ” younger brother │ ”  tambi                         ” younger brother
  113  ”   ”         ”     son’s wife                             │ ah-ge-ah′-ne-ah       ” sister-in-law   │ ”  măittŭni                      ” sister-in-law & cousin
  114  ”   ”         ”     daughter         (_otm_)               │ ah′-je                ” elder sister    │ ”  akkàrl b, tămăkay             ” elder sister
  115  ”   ”         ”        ”             (_ytm_)               │ ka′-gă                ” younger sister  │ ”  tăngăichchi, b, tangay        ” younger sister
  116  ”   ”         ”     daughter’s husband                     │ ha-yă′-o              ” brother-in-law  │ ”  măittŭnăn                     ” bro’r-in-law & cousin
  117  ”   ”         ”     son’s son        (_ms_)                │ ha-ah′-wuk            ” son             │ ”  măkăn                         ” son
  118  ”   ”         ”      ”     ”         (_fs_)                │ ha-soh′-neh           ” nephew          │ ”  mărŭmăkăn                     ” nephew
  119  ”   ”         ”      ” daughter      (_ms_)                │ ka-ah′-wuk            ” daughter        │ ”  măkăl                         ” daughter
  120  ”   ”         ”      ” ”             (_fs_)                │ ka-soh′-neh           ” niece           │ ”  mărŭmăkăl                     ” niece
  121  ”   ”         ”     daughter’s son   (_ms_)                │ ha-yă′-wän-da         ” nephew          │ ”  mărŭmăkăn                     ” nephew
  122  ”   ”         ”        ”        ”    (_fs_)                │ ha-ah′-wuk            ” son             │ ”  măkăn                         ” son
  123  ” mother’s sister’s daughter’s daughter (_ms_)             │ ka-yā′-wän-da         ” niece           │ En mărŭmăkăl                     ” niece
  124  ”    ”       ”         ”          ”     (_fs_)             │ ka-ah′-wuk            ” daughter        │ ”  măkăl                         ” daughter
  125  ”    ”       ”      great-grandson                         │ ha-yä′-da             ” grandson        │ ”  pêrăn                         ” grandson
  126  ”    ”       ”      great-granddaughter                    │ ka-yä′-da             ” granddaughter   │ ”  pêrtti                        ” granddaughter
  127  ” father’s father’s brother                                │ hoc′-sote             ” grandfather     │ ”  păddăn (P. and S.)            ” grandfather, g’t or lit.
  128  ”    ”       ”      brother’s son                          │ hä′-nih               ” father          │ ”  takkăppăn (P. and S.)         ” father, great or little
  129  ”    ”       ”         ”      son’s son  (_otm_)           │ hä′-je                ” elder brother   │ ”  a[n:][n:]an, b, tămăiyăn      ” elder brother
  130  ”    ”       ”         ”       ”     ”   (_ytm_)           │ ha′-gă                ” younger brother │ ”  tambi                         ” younger brother
  131  ”    ”       ”         ”       ”    son’s son (_ms_)       │ ha-ah′-wuk            ” son             │ ”  măkăn                         ” son
  132  ”    ”       ”         ”       ”     ”     ”  (_fs_)       │ ka-soh′-neh           ” nephew          │ ”  mărŭmăkăn                     ” nephew
  133  ”    ”       ”         ”       ”     ”    dau’ter (_ms_)   │ ka-ah′-wuk            ” daughter        │ ”  măkăl                         ” daughter
  134  ”    ”       ”         ”       ”     ”       ”    (_fs_)   │ ka-soh′-neh           ” niece           │ ”  mărŭmăkăl                     ” niece
  135  ”    ”       ”         ”      great-great-grandson         │ ha-yä′-da             ” grandson        │ ”  pêrăn                         ” grandson
  136  ”    ”       ”         ”       ”     ”    granddaughter    │ ka-yä′-da             ” granddaughter   │ ”  pêrtti                        ” granddaughter
  137  ” father’s father’s sister                                 │ oc′-sote              ” grandmother     │ ”  păddi (P. and S.)             ” grandmother, g’t or lit.
  138  ”     ”      ”      sister’s daughter                      │ ah-ga′-huc            ” aunt            │ ”  táy (P. and S.)               ” mother, great or little
  139  ”     ”      ”         ”     daughter’s daughter    (_ms_) │ ah-găre′-seh          ” cousin          │ ”  tămăkăy (o.) tăngăy (y.)      ” elder or younger sister
  140  ”     ”      ”         ”        ”          ”        (_fs_) │ ah-găre′-seh          ” cousin          │ ”  tămăkăy (o.) tăngăy (y.)      ”   ”         ”      ”
  141  ”     ”      ”         ”    dau’ter’s dau’ter’s son (_ms_) │ ha-yă′-wän-da         ” nephew          │ ”  mărŭmăkăn?                    ” nephew
  142  ”     ”      ”         ”        ”       ”        ”  (_fs_) │ ha-ah′wuk             ” son             │ ”  măkăn?                        ” son
  143  ”     ”      ”         ”        ”       ”   dau’ter (_ms_) │ ka-yă′-wän-da         ” niece           │ ”  mărŭmăkăl?                    ” niece
  144  ”     ”      ”         ”        ”       ”     ”     (_fs_) │ ka-ah′-wuk            ” daughter        │ ”  măkăl?                        ” daughter
  145  ”     ”      ”         ”    great-great-grandson           │ ha-yä′-da             ” grandson        │ ”  pêrăn                         ” grandson
  146  ”     ”      ”         ”      ”     ”   granddaughter      │ ka-yä′-da             ” granddaughter   │ ”  pêrtti                        ” granddaughter
  147  ” mother’s mother’s brother                                │ hoc′-sote             ” grandfather     │ ”  păddăn (P. and S.)            ” grandfather, g’t or lit.
  148  ”     ”       ”     brother’s son                          │ hoc-no-seh            ” uncle           │ ”  mămăn                         ” uncle
  149  ”     ”       ”        ”      son’s son         (_ms_)     │ ah-găre′-seh          ” cousin          │ ”  măittŭnăn                     ” cousin
  150  ”     ”       ”        ”       ”     ”          (_fs_)     │ ah-găre′-seh          ” cousin          │ ”  măchchăn                      ”   ”
  151  ”     ”       ”        ”       ”    son’s son   (_ms_)     │ ha-ah′-wuk            ” son             │ ”  mărŭmăkăn                     ” nephew
  152  ”     ”       ”        ”       ”     ”     ”    (_fs_)     │ ha-soh′-neh           ” nephew          │ ”  măkăn                         ” son
  153  ”     ”       ”        ”       ”     ”  dau’ter (_ms_)     │ ka-ah′-wuk            ” daughter        │ ”  mărŭmăkăl                     ” niece
  154  ”     ”       ”        ”       ”     ”     ”    (_fs_)     │ ka-soh′-neh           ” niece           │ ”  măkăl                         ” daughter
  155  ”     ”       ”        ”      great-great-grandson         │ ha-yä′-da             ” grandson        │ ”  pêrăn                         ” grandson
  156  ”     ”       ”        ”       ”     ”    granddaughter    │ ka-yä′-da             ” granddaughter   │ ”  pêrtti                        ” granddaughter
  157  ” mother’s mother’s sister                                 │ oc′-sote              ” grandmother     │ ”  păddi (P. and S.)             ” grandmother, g’t or lit.
  158  ”     ”       ”     sister’s daughter                      │ no-yeh′               ” mother          │ ”  táy (P. and S.)               ” mother, great or little
  159  ”     ”       ”        ”  dau’ter’s dau’ter (_otm_)        │ ah′-je                ” elder sister    │ ”  tămăkăy                       ” elder sister
  160  ”     ”       ”        ”    ”         ”     (_ytm_)        │ ka′-ga                ” younger sister  │ ”  tăngăy                        ” younger sister
  161  ”     ”       ”        ”    ”   daughter’s son     (_ms_)  │ ha-yă′-wän-da         ” nephew          │ ”  mărŭmăkăn                     ” nephew
  162  ”     ”       ”        ”    ”         ”     ”      (_fs_)  │ ha-ah′-wuk            ” son             │ ”  măkăn                         ” son
  163  ”     ”       ”        ”    ”         ” daughter   (_ms_)  │ ka-yă′-wän-da         ” niece           │ ”  mărŭmăkăl                     ” niece
  164  ”     ”       ”        ”    ”         ”     ”      (_fs_)  │ ka-an′-wuk            ” daughter        │ ”  măkăl                         ” daughter
  165  ”     ”       ”        ”  great-great-grandson             │ ha-yä′-da             ” grandson        │ ”  pêrăn                         ” grandson
  166  ” mother’s mother’s sister’s great-great-granddaughter     │ ka-yä′-da            My granddaughter   │ En pêrtti                        ” granddaughter
  167  ” father’s father’s father’s brother                       │ hoc′-sote             ” grandfather     │ ”  irandám păddăn                ” 2d grandfather
  168  ”    ”        ”        ”     brother’s son                 │ hoc′-sote             ” grandfather     │ ”  păddăn (P.and S.)             ” grandfather, g’t or lit.
  169  ”    ”        ”        ”        ”  son’s son (_otm_)       │ hä′-nih               ” father          │ ”  tăkăppăn (P. and S.)          ” father, great or little
  170  ”    ”        ”        ”        ”   ” son’s son (_ms_)     │ ha-ah′-wuk            ” son             │ ”  măkăn                         ” son
  171  ”    ”        ”        ”        ”   ”   ”   son’s son      │ ha-yä′-da             ” grandson        │ ”  pêrăn                         ” grandson
  172  ”    ”        ”        ”        ”                          │ oc′-sote              ” grandmother     │ ”  irandám păddi                 ” 2d grandmother
  173  ” father’s father’s father’s sister’s daughter             │ oc′-sote              ” grandmother     │ ”  păddi (P. and S.)             ” grandmother, g’t or lit.
  174  ”    ”        ”        ”        ” d’s daughter             │ no-yeh′               ” mother          │ ”  táy (P. and S.)               ” mother, great or little
  175  ”    ”        ”        ”        ” ” d’s dau’ter (_ms_)     │ ah′-je                ” elder sister    │ ”  tămăkăy b, tăngăy?            ” sister, elder or younger
  176  ”    ”        ”        ”        ”   ”   ” d’s daughter     │ ha-soh′-neh           ” niece           │ ”  mărŭmăkăl                     ” niece
  177  ”    ”        ”        ”        ”   ”   ”   ”  d’s dau'ter │ ha-yä′-da             ” granddaughter   │ ”  pêrtti                        ” granddaughter
  178  ” mother’s mother’s mother’s brother                       │ hoc′-sote             ” grandfather     │ ”  irandám păddăn                ” 2d grandfather
  179  ”    ”        ”        ” brother’s son                     │ hoc′-sote             ” grandfather     │ ”  păddăn (P. or S.)             ” grandfather, g’t or lit.
  180  ”    ”        ”        ”   ” son’s son                     │ hoc-no′-seh           ” uncle           │ ”  mămăn                         ” uncle
  181  ”    ”        ”        ”   ”  ” son’s son    (_ms_)        │ ah-găre′-seh          ” cousin          │ ”  măitŭnăn                      ” cousin
  182  ”    ”        ”        ”   ”  ”  ” son’s son (_fs_)        │ ha-ah′-wuk            ” son             │ ”  mărŭmăkăn                     ” nephew
  183  ”    ”        ”        ”   ”  ”  ”  ”    son’s son         │ ha-yä′-da             ” grandson        │ ”  pêrăn                         ” grandchild
  184  ” mother’s mother’s mother’s sister                        │ oc′-sote              ” grandmother     │ ”  irandám păddi                 ” 2d grandmother
  185  ”    ”        ”        ” sister’s daughter                 │ oc′-sote              ” grandmother     │ ”  păddi (P. or S.)              ” grandmother, g’t or lit.
  186  ”    ”        ”        ”  ” daughter’s daughter            │ no-yeh′               ” mother          │ ”  táy (P. or S.)                ” mother, great or little
  187  ”    ”        ”        ”  ” ” dau’ter’s dau’ter    (_otm_) │ ah′-je                ” elder sister    │ ”  akkárl                        ” elder sister
  188  ”    ”        ”        ”  ” ”  ” dau’ter’s dau’ter (_fs_)  │ ka-yā′-wän-da         ” niece           │ ”  măkăl                         ” daughter
  189  ”    ”        ”        ”  ” ”  ”    ”  daughter’s daughter │ ka-yä′-da             ” granddaughter   │ ”  pêrtti                        ” granddaughter
  190  ” husband                                                  │ da-yake′-ne           ” husband         │ ”  kănavăn, b, purnshan          ” husband
  191  ” wife                                                     │ da-yake′-ne           ” wife            │ ”  măinavi, b, pernchátti        ” wife
  192  ” husband’s father                                         │ hä-ga′-sä             ” father-in-law   │ ”  mámăn, b, mámanär             ” uncle & father-in-law
  193  ”   ”       mother                                         │ ong-ga′-sä            ” mother-in-law   │ ”  mámi, b, mánnai               ” aunt & mother-in-law
  194  ” wife’s father                                            │ oc-na′-hose           ” father-in-law   │ ”  mămăn                         ” uncle & father
  195  ”   ”    mother                                            │ oc-na′-hose           ” mother-in-law   │ ”  mámi                          ” aunt
  196  ” son-in-law                                               │ oc-na′-hose           ” son-in-law      │ ”  mápillai, b, mărŭmăkăn        ” son-in-law & nephew
  197  ” daughter-in-law                                          │ ka′-sä                ” daughter-in-law │ ”  marŭmăkal                     ” dau’ter-in-law & niece
  198  ” step-father                                              │ hoc-no′-ese           ” step-father     │                                  (Widows cannot marry.)
  199  ”  ”   mother                                              │ oc-no′-ese            ” step-mother     │ ”  sĕriya táy                    ” little mother
  200  ”  ”   son                                                 │ ha′-no                ” step-son        │ ”  măkăn                         ”  son
  201  ”  ”   daughter                                            │ ka′-no                ” step-daughter   │ ”  măkăl                         ”  daughter
  202  ”  ”   brother                                             │                                         │ ”  a[n:][n:]an (o.) tambi (y.)   ” bro’r, older or younger
  203  ”  ”   sister                                              │                                         │ ”  akkárl (o.) tăngăy (y.)       ” sister   ”        ”
  204  ” brother-in-law (_husband’s brother_)                     │ ha-yă′-o              ” brother-in-law  │ ”  măittŭnăn                     ” bro’r-in-law & cousin
  205  ”    ”        ”  (_sister’s husband, ms_)                  │ ah-ge-ah′-ne-o        ”    ”        ”   │ ”  măittŭnăn                     ”   ”     ”        ”
  206  ”    ”        ”  (  ”        ”       fs )                  │ ha-yă′-o              ”    ”        ”   │ ”  attan (o.) maichchăn          ”   ”     ”        ”
  207  ”    ”        ”  (_wife’s brother_)                        │ ah-ge′-ah′-ne-o       ”    ”        ”   │ ”  măittŭnăn                     ”   ”     ”        ”
  208  ”    ”        ”  (_wife’s sister’s husband_)               │ no relation                             │ ”  sakălăn                       ”   ”     ”        ”
  209  ” brother-in-law (_husband’s sister’s husband_)            │ no relation                             │ En sakotaran                     ” bro’r-in-law & cousin
  210  ” sister-in-law   (_wife’s sister_)                        │ ka-yă′-o              My sister-in-law  │ ”  korlunti (o.) măittŭini       ” sister-in-law & cousin
  211  ”    ”     ”    (_husband’s sister_)                       │ ah-ge-ah′-ne-o        ”     ”      ”    │ ”  năttănae                      ”   ”       ”       ”
  212  ”    ”     ”    (_brother’s wife, ms_)                     │ ka-yă′-o              ”     ”      ”    │ ”  a[n:][n:]i (o.) măittŭni (y.) ”   ”       ”       ”
  213  ”    ”     ”    (_brother’s wife, fems_)                   │ ah-ge-ah′-ne-o        ”     ”      ”    │ ”  a[n:][n:]i (o.) māittūni (y.) ”   ”       ”       ”
  214  ”    ”     ”    (_husband’s brother’s wife_)               │ no relation                             │ ”  orakatti                      ”   ”       ”       ”
  215  ”    ”     ”    (_wife’s brother’s wife_)                  │ no relation                             │ ”  tămăkăy (o.) tāngăy (y.)      ”   ”       ”       ”
  216  ” widow                                                    │ go-no-kw′-yes′-hä′-ah  widow            │  ” kiempun                       widow
  217  ” widower                                                  │ ho-no-kw′-yes′-hä′-ah  widower          │
  218  ” twins                                                    │ tas-geek′-hă           twins            │ Dithambathie                     twins (Sanskrit)



CHAPTER IV.

THE SYNDYASMIAN AND THE PATRIARCHAL FAMILIES.

    THE SYNDYASMIAN FAMILY.—HOW CONSTITUTED.—ITS
    CHARACTERISTICS.—INFLUENCE UPON IT OF THE GENTILE
    ORGANIZATION.—PROPENSITY TO PAIR A LATE DEVELOPMENT.—ANCIENT
    SOCIETY SHOULD BE STUDIED WHERE THE HIGHEST EXEMPLIFICATIONS
    ARE FOUND.—THE PATRIARCHAL FAMILY.—PATERNAL POWER ITS
    ESSENTIAL CHARACTERISTIC.—POLYGAMY SUBORDINATE.—THE ROMAN
    FAMILY SIMILAR.—PATERNAL POWER UNKNOWN IN PREVIOUS FAMILIES.


When the American aborigines were discovered, that portion of them who
were in the Lower Status of barbarism, had attained to the syndyasmian
or pairing family. The large groups in the marriage relation, which
must have existed in the previous period, had disappeared; and in their
places were married pairs, forming clearly marked, though but partially
individualized families. In this family, may be recognized the germ
of the monogamian, but it was below the latter in several essential
particulars.

The syndyasmian family was special and peculiar. Several of them were
usually found in one house, forming a communal household, in which
the principle of communism in living was practiced. The fact of the
conjunction of several such families in a common household is of itself
an admission that the family was too feeble an organization to face
alone the hardships of life. Nevertheless it was founded upon marriage
between single pairs, and possessed some of the characteristics of the
monogamian family. The woman was now something more than the principal
wife of her husband; she was his companion, the preparer of his food,
and the mother of children whom he now began with some assurance to
regard as his own. The birth of children, for whom they jointly cared,
tended to cement the union and render it permanent.

But the marriage institution was as peculiar as the family. Men did not
seek wives as they are sought in civilized society, from affection, for
the passion of love, which required a higher development than they had
attained, was unknown among them. Marriage, therefore, was not founded
upon sentiment but upon convenience and necessity. It was left to the
mothers, in effect, to arrange the marriages of their children, and
they were negotiated generally without the knowledge of the parties to
be married, and without asking their previous consent. It sometimes
happened that entire strangers were thus brought into the marriage
relation. At the proper time they were notified when the simple nuptial
ceremony would be performed. Such were the usages of the Iroquois and
many other Indian tribes. Acquiescence in these maternal contracts
was a duty which the parties seldom refused. Prior to the marriage,
presents to the gentile relatives of the bride, nearest in degree,
partaking of the nature of purchasing gifts, became a feature in these
matrimonial transactions. The relation, however, continued during the
pleasure of the parties, and no longer. It is for this reason that it
is properly distinguished as the pairing family. The husband could put
away his wife at pleasure and take another without offence, and the
woman enjoyed the equal right of leaving her husband and accepting
another, in which the usages of her tribe and gens were not infringed.
But a public sentiment gradually formed and grew into strength against
such separations. When alienation arose between a married pair, and
their separation became imminent, the gentile kindred of each attempted
a reconciliation of the parties, in which they were often successful;
but if they were unable to remove the difficulty their separation was
approved. The wife then left the home of her husband, taking with
her their children, who were regarded as exclusively her own, and
her personal effects, upon which her husband had no claim; or where
the wife’s kindred predominated in the communal household, which was
usually the case, the husband left the home of his wife.[470] Thus the
continuance of the marriage relation remained at the option of the
parties.

There was another feature of the relation which shows that the American
aborigines in the Lower Status of barbarism had not attained the
moral development implied by monogamy. Among the Iroquois, who were
barbarians of high mental grade, and among the equally advanced Indian
tribes generally, chastity had come to be required of the wife under
severe penalties which the husband might inflict; but he did not admit
the reciprocal obligation. The one cannot be permanently realized
without the other. Moreover, polygamy was universally recognized as the
right of the males, although the practice was limited from inability
to support the indulgence. There were other usages, that need not
be mentioned, tending still further to show that they were below a
conception of monogamy, as that great institution is properly defined.
Exceptional cases very likely existed. It will be found equally true,
as I believe, of barbarous tribes in general. The principal feature
which distinguished the syndyasmian from the monogamian family,
although liable to numerous exceptions, was the absence of an exclusive
cohabitation. The old conjugal system, a record of which is still
preserved in their system of consanguinity, undoubtedly remained, but
under reduced and restricted forms.

Among the Village Indians in the Middle Status of barbarism the facts
were not essentially different, so far as they can be said to be known.
A comparison of the usages of the American aborigines, with respect
to marriage and divorce, shows an existing similarity sufficiently
strong to imply original identity of usages. A few only can be noticed.
Clavigero remarks that among the Aztecs “the parents were the persons
who settled all marriages, and none were ever executed without their
consent.”[471] “A priest tied a point of the _huepilli_, or gown of the
bride, with the _tilmatli_, or mantle of the bridegroom, and in this
ceremony the matrimonial contract chiefly consisted.”[472] Herrera,
after speaking of the same ceremony, observes that “all that the bride
brought was kept in memory, that in case they should be unmarried
again, as was usual among them, the goods might be parted; the man
taking the daughters, and the wife the sons, with liberty to marry
again.”[473]

It will be noticed that the Aztec Indian did not seek his wife
personally any more than the Iroquois. Among both it was less an
individual than a public or gentile affair, and therefore still
remained under parental control exclusively. There was very little
social intercourse between unmarried persons of the two sexes in Indian
life; and as attachments were not contracted, none were traversed by
these marriages, in which personal wishes were unconsidered, and in
fact unimportant. It appears further, that the personal effects of the
wife were kept distinct among the Aztecs as among the Iroquois, that
in case of separation, which was a common occurrence as this writer
states, she might retain them in accordance with general Indian usage.
Finally, while among the Iroquois in the case of divorce the wife took
all the children, the Aztec husband was entitled to the daughters, and
the wife to the sons; a modification of the ancient usage which implies
a prior time when the Iroquois Indian rule existed among the ancestors
of the Aztecs.

Speaking of the people of Yucatan generally Herrera further remarks
that “formerly they were wont to marry at twenty years of age, and
afterwards came to twelve or fourteen, and having no affection for
their wives were divorced for every trifle.”[474] The Mayas of Yucatan
were superior to the Aztecs in culture and development; but where
marriages were regulated on the principle of necessity, and not through
personal choice, it is not surprising that the relation was unstable,
and that separation was at the option of either party. Moreover,
polygamy was a recognized right of the males among the Village Indians,
and seems to have been more generally practiced than among the less
advanced tribes. These glimpses at institutions purely Indian as well
as barbarian reveal in a forcible manner the actual condition of the
aborigines in relative advancement. In a matter so personal as the
marriage relation, the wishes or preferences of the parties were not
consulted. No better evidence is needed of the barbarism of the people.

We are next to notice some of the influences which developed this
family from the punaluan. In the latter there was more or less
of pairing from the necessities of the social state, each man
having a principal wife among a number of wives, and each woman a
principal husband among a number of husbands; so that the tendency
in the punaluan family, from the first, was in the direction of the
syndyasmian.

The organization into gentes was the principal instrumentality that
accomplished this result; but through long and gradual processes.
Firstly. It did not at once break up intermarriage in the group, which
it found established by custom; but the prohibition of intermarriage
in the gens excluded own brothers and sisters, and also the children
of own sisters, since all of these were of the same gens. Own
brothers could still share their wives in common, and own sisters
their husbands; consequently the gens did not interfere directly
with punaluan marriage, except to narrow its range. But it withheld
permanently from that relation all the descendants in the female line
of each ancestor within the gens, which was a great innovation upon
the previous punaluan group. When the gens subdivided, the prohibition
followed its branches, for long periods of time, as has been shown was
the case among the Iroquois. Secondly. The structure and principles
of the organization tended to create a prejudice against the marriage
of consanguinei, as the advantages of marriages between unrelated
persons were gradually discovered through the practice of marrying out
of the gens. This seems to have grown apace until a public sentiment
was finally arrayed against it which had become very general among
the American aborigines when discovered.[475] For example, among
the Iroquois none of the blood relatives enumerated in the Table of
Consanguinity were marriageable. Since it became necessary to seek
wives from other gentes they began to be acquired by negotiation and
by purchase. The gentile organization must have led, step by step, as
its influence became general, to a scarcity of wives in place of their
previous abundance; and as a consequence, have gradually contracted
the numbers in the punaluan group. This conclusion is reasonable,
because there are sufficient grounds for assuming the existence of
such groups when the Turanian system of consanguinity was formed. They
have now disappeared although the system remains. These groups must
have gradually declined, and finally disappeared with the general
establishment of the syndyasmian family. Fourthly. In seeking wives,
they did not confine themselves to their own, nor even to friendly
tribes, but captured them by force from hostile tribes. It furnishes a
reason for the Indian usage of sparing the lives of female captives,
while the males were put to death. When wives came to be acquired by
purchase and by capture, and more and more by effort and sacrifice,
they would not be as readily shared with others. It would tend, at
least, to cut off that portion of the theoretical group not immediately
associated for subsistence; and thus reduce still more the size of the
family and the range of the conjugal system. Practically, the group
would tend to limit itself, from the first, to own brothers who shared
their wives in common, and to own sisters who shared their husbands
in common. Lastly. The gentes created a higher organic structure of
society than had before been known, with processes of development as
a social system adequate to the wants of mankind until civilization
supervened. With the progress of society under the gentes, the way was
prepared for the appearance of the syndyasmian family.

The influence of the new practice, which brought unrelated persons
into the marriage relation, must have given a remarkable impulse to
society. It tended to create a more vigorous stock physically and
mentally. There is a gain by accretion in the coalescence of diverse
stocks which has exercised great influence upon human development.
When two advancing tribes, with strong mental and physical characters,
are brought together and blended into one people by the accidents of
barbarous life, the new skull and brain would widen and lengthen to the
sum of the capabilities of both. Such a stock would be an improvement
upon both, and this superiority would assert itself in an increase of
intelligence and of numbers.

It follows that the propensity to pair, now so powerfully developed
in the civilized races, had remained unformed in the human mind until
the punaluan custom began to disappear. Exceptional cases undoubtedly
occurred where usages would permit the privilege; but it failed to
become general until the syndyasmian family appeared. This propensity,
therefore, cannot be called normal to mankind, but is, rather, a growth
through experience, like all the great passions and powers of the mind.

Another influence may be adverted to which tended to retard the growth
of this family. Warfare among barbarians is more destructive of life
than among savages, from improved weapons and stronger incentives.
The males, in all periods and conditions of society, have assumed the
trade of fighting, which tended to change the balance of the sexes, and
leave the females in excess. This would manifestly tend to strengthen
the conjugal system created by marriages in the group. It would,
also, retard the advancement of the syndyasmian family by maintaining
sentiments of low grade with respect to the relations of the sexes, and
the character and dignity of woman.

On the other hand, improvement in subsistence, which followed the
cultivation of maize and plants among the American aborigines,
must have favored the general advancement of the family. It led to
localization, to the use of additional arts, to an improved house
architecture, and to a more intelligent life. Industry and frugality,
though limited in degree, with increased protection of life, must have
accompanied the formation of families consisting of single pairs. The
more these advantages were realized, the more stable such a family
would become, and the more its individuality would increase. Having
taken refuge in a communal household, in which a group of such families
succeeded the punaluan group, it now drew its support from itself, from
the household, and from the gentes to which the husbands and wives
respectively belonged. The great advancement of society indicated
by the transition from savagery into the Lower Status of barbarism,
would carry with it a corresponding improvement in the condition of
the family, the course of development of which was steadily upward
to the monogamian. If the existence of the syndyasmian family were
unknown, given the punaluan toward one extreme, and the monogamian on
the other, the occurrence of such an intermediate form might have been
predicted. It has had a long duration in human experience. Springing
up on the confines of savagery and barbarism, it traversed the Middle
and the greater part of the Later Period of barbarism, when it was
superseded by a low form of the monogamian. Overshadowed by the
conjugal system of the times, it gained in recognition with the gradual
progress of society. The selfishness of mankind, as distinguished from
womankind, delayed the realization of strict monogamy until that great
fermentation of the human mind which ushered in civilization.

Two forms of the family had appeared before the syndyasmian and
created two great systems of consanguinity, or rather two distinct
forms of the same system; but this third family neither produced a new
system nor sensibly modified the old. Certain marriage relationships
appear to have been changed to accord with those in the new family;
but the essential features of the system remained unchanged. In
fact, the syndyasmian family continued for an unknown period of time
enveloped in a system of consanguinity, false in the main, to existing
relationships, and which it had no power to break. It was for the
sufficient reason that it fell short of monogamy, the coming power able
to dissolve the fabric. Although this family has no distinct system of
consanguinity to prove its existence, like its predecessors, it has
itself existed over large portions of the earth within the historical
period, and still exists in numerous barbarous tribes.

In speaking thus positively of the several forms of the family in their
relative order, there is danger of being misunderstood. I do not mean
to imply that one form rises complete in a certain status of society,
flourishes universally and exclusively wherever tribes of mankind are
found in the same status, and then disappears in another, which is the
next higher form. Exceptional cases of the punaluan family may have
appeared in the consanguine, and _vice versâ_; exceptional cases of
the syndyasmian may have appeared in the midst of the punaluan, and
_vice versâ_; and exceptional cases of the monogamian in the midst
of the syndyasmian, and _vice versâ_. Even exceptional cases of the
monogamian may have appeared as low down as the punaluan, and of the
syndyasmian as low down as the consanguine. Moreover, some tribes
attained to a particular form earlier than other tribes more advanced;
for example, the Iroquois had the syndyasmian family while in the
Lower Status of barbarism, but the Britons, who were in the Middle
Status, still had the punaluan. The high civilization on the shores of
the Mediterranean had propagated arts and inventions into Britain far
beyond the mental development of its Celtic inhabitants, and which they
had imperfectly appropriated. They seem to have been savages in their
brains, while wearing the art apparel of more advanced tribes. That
which I have endeavored to substantiate, and for which the proofs seem
to be adequate, is, that the family began in the consanguine, low down
in savagery, and grew, by progressive development, into the monogamian,
through two well-marked intermediate forms. Each was partial in its
introduction, then general, and finally universal over large areas;
after which it shaded off into the next succeeding form, which, in
turn, was at first partial, then general, and finally universal in
the same areas. In the evolution of these successive forms the main
direction of progress was from the consanguine to the monogamian. With
deviations from uniformity in the progress of mankind through these
several forms, it will generally be found that the consanguine and
punaluan families belong to the status of savagery—the former to its
lowest, and the latter to its highest condition—while the punaluan
continued into the Lower Status of barbarism; that the syndyasmian
belongs to the Lower and to the Middle Status of barbarism, and
continued into the Upper; and that the monogamian belongs to the Upper
Status of barbarism, and continued to the period of civilization.

It will not be necessary, even if space permitted, to trace the
syndyasmian family through barbarous tribes in general upon the
partial descriptions of travelers and observers. The tests given may
be applied by each reader to cases within his information. Among
the American aborigines in the Lower Status of barbarism it was the
prevailing form of the family at the epoch of their discovery. Among
the Village Indians in the Middle Status, it was undoubtedly the
prevailing form, although the information given by the Spanish writers
is vague and general. The communal character of their joint-tenement
houses is of itself strong evidence that the family had not passed
out of the syndyasmian form. It had neither the individuality nor the
exclusiveness which monogamy implies.

The foreign elements intermingled with the native culture in sections
of the Eastern hemisphere produced an abnormal condition of society,
where the arts of civilized life were remolded to the aptitudes and
wants of savages and barbarians.[476] Tribes strictly nomadic have also
social peculiarities, growing out of their exceptional mode of life,
which are not well understood. Through influences, derived from the
higher races, the indigenous culture of many tribes has been arrested,
and so far adulterated as to change the natural flow of their progress.
Their institutions and social state became modified in consequence.

It is essential to systematic progress in Ethnology that the condition
both of savage and of barbarous tribes should be studied in its
normal development in areas where the institutions of the people are
homogeneous. Polynesia and Australia, as elsewhere suggested, are the
best areas for the study of savage society. Nearly the whole theory of
savage life may be deduced from their institutions, usages and customs,
inventions and discoveries. North and South America, when discovered,
afforded the best opportunities for studying the condition of society
in the Lower and in the Middle Status of barbarism. The aborigines,
one stock in blood and lineage, with the exception of the Eskimos,
had gained possession of a great continent, more richly endowed for
human occupation than the Eastern continents, save in animals capable
of domestication. It afforded them an ample field for undisturbed
development. They came into its possession apparently in a savage
state; but the establishment of the organization into gentes put them
into possession of the principal germs of progress possessed by the
ancestors of the Greeks and Romans.[477] Cut off thus early, and losing
all further connection with the central stream of human progress, they
commenced their career upon a new continent with the humble mental and
moral endowments of savages. The independent evolution of the primary
ideas they brought with them commenced under conditions insuring a
career undisturbed by foreign influences. It holds true alike in the
growth of the idea of government, of the family, of household life,
of property, and of the arts of subsistence. Their institutions,
inventions and discoveries, from savagery, through the Lower and into
the Middle Status of barbarism, are homogeneous, and still reveal a
continuity of development of the same original conceptions.

In no part of the earth, in modern times, could a more perfect
exemplification of the Lower Status of barbarism be found than was
afforded by the Iroquois, and other tribes of the United States east
of the Mississippi. With their arts indigenous and unmixed, and with
their institutions pure and homogeneous, the culture of this period,
in its range, elements and possibilities, is illustrated by them in
the fullest manner. A systematic exposition of these several subjects
ought to be made, before the facts are allowed to disappear.

In a still higher degree all this was true with respect to the Middle
Status of barbarism, as exemplified by the Village Indians of New
Mexico, Mexico, Central America, Grenada, Ecuador, and Peru. In no
part of the earth was there to be found such a display of society in
this Status, in the sixteenth century, with its advanced arts and
inventions, its improved architecture, its nascent manufactures and its
incipient sciences. American scholars have a poor account to render of
work done in this fruitful field. It was in reality a lost condition of
ancient society which was suddenly unveiled to European observers with
the discovery of America; but they failed to comprehend its meaning, or
to ascertain its structure.

There is one other great condition of society, that of the Upper
Status of barbarism, not now exemplified by existing nations; but it
may be found in the history and traditions of the Grecian and Roman,
and later of the German tribes. It must be deduced, in the main, from
their institutions, inventions and discoveries, although there is a
large amount of information illustrative of the culture of this period,
especially in the Homeric poems.

When these several conditions of society have been studied in the
areas of their highest exemplification, and are thoroughly understood,
the course of human development from savagery, through barbarism to
civilization, will become intelligible as a connected whole. The course
of human experience will also be found as before suggested to have run
in nearly uniform channels.

The patriarchal family of the Semitic tribes requires but a brief
notice, for reasons elsewhere stated; and it will be limited to little
more than a definition. It belongs to the Later Period of barbarism,
and remained for a time after the commencement of civilization. The
chiefs, at least, lived in polygamy; but this was not the material
principle of the patriarchal institution. The organization of a number
of persons, bond and free, into a family, under paternal power, for
the purpose of holding lands, and for the care of flocks and herds, was
the essential characteristic of this family. Those held to servitude,
and those employed as servants, lived in the marriage relation, and,
with the patriarch as their chief, formed a patriarchal family.
Authority over its members and over its property was the material
fact. It was the incorporation of numbers in servile and dependent
relations, before that time unknown, rather than polygamy, that stamped
the patriarchal family with the attributes of an original institution.
In the great movement of Semitic society, which produced this family,
paternal power over the group was the object sought; and with it a
higher individuality of persons.

The same motive precisely originated the Roman family under paternal
power (_patria potestas_); with the power in the father of life and
death over his children and descendants, as well as over the slaves
and servants who formed its nucleus and furnished its name; and with
the absolute ownership of all the property they created. Without
polygamy, the _pater familias_ was a patriarch and the family under him
was patriarchal. In a less degree, the ancient family of the Grecian
tribes had the same characteristics. It marks that peculiar epoch in
human progress when the individuality of the person began to rise
above the gens, in which it had previously been merged, craving an
independent life, and a wider field of individual action. Its general
influence tended powerfully to the establishment of the monogamian
family, which was essential to the realization of the objects sought.
These striking features of the patriarchal families, so unlike any
form previously known, have given to it a commanding position; but the
Hebrew and Roman forms were exceptional in human experience. In the
consanguine and punaluan families, paternal authority was impossible as
well as unknown; under the syndyasmian it began to appear as a feeble
influence; but its growth steadily advanced as the family became more
and more individualized, and became fully established under monogamy,
which assured the paternity of children. In the patriarchal family of
the Roman type, paternal authority passed beyond the bounds of reason
into an excess of domination.

No new system of consanguinity was created by the Hebrew patriarchal
family. The Turanian system would harmonize with a part of its
relationships; but as this form of the family soon fell out, and the
monogamian became general, it was followed by the Semitic system of
consanguinity, as the Grecian and Roman were by the Aryan. Each of the
three great systems—the Malayan, the Turanian, and the Aryan—indicates
a completed organic movement of society, and each assured the presence,
with unerring certainty, of that form of the family whose relationships
it recorded.



CHAPTER V.

THE MONOGAMIAN FAMILY.

    THIS FAMILY COMPARATIVELY MODERN.—THE TERM FAMILIA.—FAMILY
    OF ANCIENT GERMANS.—OF HOMERIC GREEKS.—OF CIVILIZED
    GREEKS.—SECLUSION OF WIVES.—OBLIGATIONS OF MONOGAMY NOT
    RESPECTED BY THE MALES.—THE ROMAN FAMILY.—WIVES UNDER
    POWER.—ARYAN SYSTEM OF CONSANGUINITY.—IT CAME IN UNDER
    MONOGAMY.—PREVIOUS SYSTEM PROBABLY TURANIAN.—TRANSITION
    FROM TURANIAN INTO ARYAN.—ROMAN AND ARABIC SYSTEMS OF
    CONSANGUINITY.—DETAILS OF THE FORMER.—PRESENT MONOGAMIAN
    FAMILY.—TABLE.


The origin of society has been so constantly traced to the monogamian
family that the comparatively modern date now assigned to this family
bears the semblance of novelty. Those writers who have investigated
the origin of society philosophically, found it difficult to conceive
of its existence apart from the family as its unit, or of the family
itself as other than monogamian. They also found it necessary to
regard the married pair as the nucleus of a group of persons, a part
of whom were servile, and all of whom were under power; thus arriving
at the conclusion that society began in the patriarchal family, when
it first became organized. Such, in fact, was the most ancient form of
the institution made known to us among the Latin, Grecian and Hebrew
tribes. Thus, by relation, the patriarchal family was made the typical
family of primitive society, conceived either in the Latin or Hebrew
form, paternal power being the essence of the organism.

The gens, as it appeared in the later period of barbarism, was well
understood, but it was erroneously supposed to be subsequent in point
of time to the monogamian family. A necessity for some knowledge
of the institutions of barbarous and even of savage tribes, is
becoming constantly more apparent as a means for explaining our own
institutions. With the assumption made that the monogamian family was
the unit of organization in the social system, the gens was treated
as an aggregation of families, the tribe as an aggregation of gentes,
and the nation as an aggregate of tribes. The error lies in the first
proposition. It has been shown that the gens entered entire in the
phratry, the phratry into the tribe, and the tribe into the nation; but
the family could not enter entire into the gens, because husband and
wife were necessarily of different gentes. The wife, down to the latest
period, counted herself of the gens of her father, and bore the name of
his gens among the Romans. As all the parts must enter into the whole,
the family could not become the unit of the gentile organization. That
place was held by the gens. Moreover, the patriarchal family, whether
of the Roman or of the Hebrew type, was entirely unknown throughout
the period of savagery, through the Older, and probably through the
Middle, and far into the Later Period of barbarism. After the gens had
appeared, ages upon ages, and even period upon period, rolled away
before the monogamian family came into existence. It was not until
after civilization commenced that it became permanently established.

Its modern appearance among the Latin tribes may be inferred from the
signification of the word _family_, derived from _familia_, which
contains the same element as _famulus_, = servant, supposed to be
derived from the Oscan _famel_, = _servus_, a slave.[478] In its
primary meaning the word _family_ had no relation to the married pair
or their children, but to the body of slaves and servants who labored
for its maintenance, and were under the power of the _pater familias_.
_Familia_ in some testamentary dispositions is used as equivalent
to _patrimonium_, the inheritance which passed to the heir.[479] It
was introduced in Latin society to define a new organism, the head
of which held wife and children, and a body of servile persons under
paternal power. Mommsen uses the phrase “body of servants” as the Latin
signification of _familia_.[480] This term, therefore, and the idea
it represents, are no older than the iron-clad family system of the
Latin tribes, which came in after field agriculture and after legalized
servitude, as well as after the separation of the Greeks and Latins. If
any name was given to the anterior family it is not now ascertainable.

In two forms of the family, the consanguine and punaluan, paternal
power was impossible. When the gens appeared in the midst of the
punaluan group it united the several sisters, with their children and
descendants in the female line, in perpetuity, in a gens, which became
the unit of organization in the social system it created. Out of this
state of things the syndyasmian family was gradually evolved, and with
it the germ of paternal power. The growth of this power, at first
feeble and fluctuating, then commenced, and it steadily increased, as
the new family more and more assumed monogamian characteristics, with
the upward progress of society. When property began to be created in
masses, and the desire for its transmission to children had changed
descent from the female line to the male, a real foundation for
paternal power was for the first time established. Among the Hebrew
and Latin tribes, when first known, the patriarchal family of the
Hebrew type existed among the former, and of the Roman type among the
latter; founded in both cases upon the limited or absolute servitude of
a number of persons with their families, all of whom, with the wives
and children of the patriarch in one case, and of the _pater familias_
in the other, were under paternal power. It was an exceptional, and,
in the Roman family, an excessive development of paternal authority,
which, so far from being universal, was restricted in the main to the
people named. Gaius declares that the power of the Roman father over
his children was peculiar to the Romans, and that in general no other
people had the same power.[481]

It will be sufficient to present a few illustrations of the early
monogamian family from classical writers to give an impression of its
character. Monogamy appears in a definite form in the Later Period of
barbarism. Long prior to this time some of its characteristics had
undoubtedly attached themselves to the previous syndyasmian family; but
the essential element of the former, an exclusive cohabitation, could
not be asserted of the latter.

One of the earliest and most interesting illustrations was found in the
family of the ancient Germans. Their institutions were homogeneous and
indigenous; and the people were advancing toward civilization. Tacitus,
in a few lines, states their usages with respect to marriage, without
giving the composition of the family or defining its attributes. After
stating that marriages were strict among them, and pronouncing it
commendable, he further remarks, that almost alone among barbarians
they contented themselves with a single wife—a very few excepted, who
were drawn into plural marriages, not from passion, but on account
of their rank. That the wife did not bring a dowry to her husband,
but the husband to his wife, ... a caparisoned horse, and a shield,
with a spear and sword. That by virtue of these gifts the wife was
espoused.[482] The presents, in the nature of purchasing gifts, which
probably in an earlier condition went to the gentile kindred of the
bride, were now presented to the bride.

Elsewhere he mentions the two material facts in which the substance of
monogamy is found:[483] firstly, that each man was contented with a
single wife (_singulis uxoribus contenti sunt_); and, secondly, that
the women lived fenced around with chastity (_septæ pudicitia agunt_).
It seems probable, from what is known of the condition of the family
in different ethnical periods, that this of the ancient Germans was
too weak an organization to face alone the hardships of life; and, as
a consequence, sheltered itself in a communal household composed of
related families. When slavery became an institution, these households
would gradually disappear. German society was not far enough advanced
at this time for the appearance of a high type of the monogamian family.

With respect to the Homeric Greeks, the family, although monogamian,
was low in type. Husbands required chastity in their wives, which
they sought to enforce by some degree of seclusion; but they did not
admit the reciprocal obligation by which alone it could be permanently
secured. Abundant evidence appears in the Homeric poems that woman had
few rights men were bound to respect. Such female captives as were
swept into their vessels by the Grecian chiefs, on their way to Troy,
were appropriated to their passions without compunction and without
restraint. It must be taken as a faithful picture of the times, whether
the incidents narrated in the poems were real or fictitious. Although
the persons were captives, it reflects the low estimate placed upon
woman. Her dignity was unrecognized, and her personal rights were
insecure. To appease the resentment of Achilles, Agamemnon proposed, in
a council of the Grecian chiefs, to give to him, among other things,
seven Lesbian women excelling in personal beauty, reserved for himself
from the spoil of that city, Briseis herself to go among the number;
and should Troy be taken, the further right to select twenty Trojan
women, the fairest of all next to Argive Helen.[484] “Beauty and
Booty” were the watchwords of the Heroic Age unblushingly avowed.
The treatment of their female captives reflects the culture of the
period with respect to women in general. Men having no regard for the
parental, marital or personal rights of their enemies, could not have
attained to any high conception of their own.

In describing the tent life of the unwedded Achilles, and of his
friend Patroclus, Homer deemed it befitting the character and dignity
of Achilles as a chief to show that he slept in the recess of his
well-constructed tent, and by his side lay a female, fair-cheeked
Diomede, whom he had brought from Lesbos. And that Patroclus on the
other side reclined, and by him also lay fair-waisted Iphis, whom noble
Achilles gave him, having captured her at Scyros.[485] Such usages
and customs on the part of unmarried as well as married men, cited
approvingly by the great poet of the period, and sustained by public
sentiment, tend to show that whatever of monogamy existed, was through
an enforced constraint upon wives, while their husbands were not
monogamists in the preponderating number of cases. Such a family has
quite as many syndyasmian as monogamian characteristics.

The condition of woman in the Heroic Age is supposed to have been more
favorable, and her position in the household more honorable than it
was at the commencement of civilization, and even afterwards under
their highest development. It may have been true in a far anterior
period before descent was changed to the male line, but there seems to
be little room for the conjecture at the time named. A great change
for the better occurred, so far as the means and mode of life were
concerned, but it served to render more conspicuous the real estimate
placed upon her through the Later Period of barbarism.

Elsewhere attention has been called to the fact that when descent
was changed from the female line to the male, it operated injuriously
upon the position and rights of the wife and mother. Her children were
transferred from her own gens to that of her husband, and she forfeited
her agnatic rights by her marriage without obtaining an equivalent.
Before the change, the members of her own gens, in all probability,
predominated in the household, which gave full force to the maternal
bond, and made the woman rather more than the man the center of the
family. After the change she stood alone in the household of her
husband, isolated from her gentile kindred. It must have weakened the
influence of the maternal bond, and have operated powerfully to lower
her position and arrest her progress in the social scale. Among the
prosperous classes, her condition of enforced seclusion, together with
the avowed primary object of marriage, to beget children in lawful
wedlock (παιδοποιεῖσθαι γνησίως), lead to the inference that her
position was less favorable in the Heroic Age than in the subsequent
period, concerning which we are much better informed.

From first to last among the Greeks there was a principle of egotism
or studied selfishness at work among the males, tending to lessen
the appreciation of woman, scarcely found among savages. It reveals
itself in their plan of domestic life, which in the higher ranks
secluded the wife to enforce an exclusive cohabitation, without
admitting the reciprocal obligation on the part of her husband. It
implies the existence of an antecedent conjugal system of the Turanian
type, against which it was designed to guard. So powerfully had the
usages of centuries stamped upon the minds of Grecian women a sense
of their inferiority, that they did not recover from it to the latest
period of Grecian ascendency. It was, perhaps, one of the sacrifices
required of womankind to bring this portion of the human race out of
the syndyasmian into the monogamian family. It still remains an enigma
that a race, with endowments great enough to impress their mental life
upon the world, should have remained essentially barbarian in their
treatment of the female sex at the height of their civilization. Women
were not treated with cruelty, nor with discourtesy within the range
of the privileges allowed them; but their education was superficial,
intercourse with the opposite sex was denied them, and their
inferiority was inculcated as a principle, until it came to be accepted
as a fact by the women themselves. The wife was not the companion
and the equal of her husband, but stood to him in the relation of
a daughter; thus denying the fundamental principle of monogamy, as
the institution in its highest form must be understood. The wife is
necessarily the equal of her husband in dignity, in personal rights and
in social position. We may thus discover at what a price of experience
and endurance this great institution of modern society has been won.

Our information is quite ample and specific with respect to the
condition of Grecian women and the Grecian family during the historical
period. Becker, with the marvelous research for which his works are
distinguished, has collected the principal facts and presented them
with clearness and force.[486] His statements, while they do not
furnish a complete picture of the family of the historical period, are
quite sufficient to indicate the great difference between the Grecian
and the modern civilized family, and also to show the condition of the
monogamian family in the early stages of its development.

Among the facts stated by Becker, there are two that deserve further
notice: first, the declaration that the chief object of marriage
was the procreation of children in lawful wedlock; and second, the
seclusion of women to insure this result. The two are intimately
connected, and throw some reflected light upon the previous condition
from which they had emerged. In the first place, the passion of love
was unknown among the barbarians. They are below the sentiment, which
is the offspring of civilization and superadded refinement. The Greeks
in general, as their marriage customs show, had not attained to a
knowledge of this passion, although there were, of course, numerous
exceptions. Physical worth, in Grecian estimation, was the measure of
all the excellences of which the female sex were capable. Marriage,
therefore, was not grounded upon sentiment, but upon necessity and
duty. These considerations are those which governed the Iroquois and
the Aztecs; in fact they originated in barbarism, and reveal the
anterior barbarous condition of the ancestors of the Grecian tribes.
It seems strange that they were sufficient to answer the Greek ideal
of the family relation in the midst of Grecian civilization. The
growth of property and the desire for its transmission to children
was, in reality, the moving power which brought in monogamy to insure
legitimate heirs, and to limit their number to the actual progeny of
the married pair. A knowledge of the paternity of children had begun to
be realized under the syndyasmian family, from which the Grecian form
was evidently derived, but it had not attained the requisite degree
of certainty because of the survival of some portion of the ancient
_jura conjugialia_. It explains the new usage which made its appearance
in the Upper Status of barbarism; namely, the seclusion of wives.
An implication to this effect arises from the circumstance that a
necessity for the seclusion of the wife must have existed at the time,
and which seems to have been so formidable that the plan of domestic
life among the civilized Greeks was, in reality, a system of female
confinement and restraint. Although the particulars cited relate more
especially to the family among the prosperous classes, the spirit it
evinces was doubtless general.

Turning next to the Roman family, the condition of woman is more
favorable, but her subordination the same.

She was treated with respect in Rome as in Athens, but in the Roman
family her influence and authority were greater. As _mater familias_
she was mistress of the family. She went into the streets freely
without restraint on the part of her husband, and frequented with
the men the theaters and festive banquets. In the house she was not
confined to particular apartments, neither was she excluded from the
table of the men. The absence of the worst restrictions placed upon
Grecian females was favorable to the growth of a sense of personal
dignity and of independence among Roman women. Plutarch remarks that
after the peace with the Sabines, effected through the intervention of
the Sabine women, many honorable privileges were conferred upon them;
the men were to give them the way when they met on the street; they
were not to utter a vulgar word in the presence of females, nor appear
nude before them.[487] Marriage, however, placed the wife in the power
of her husband (_in manum viri_); the notion that she must remain
under power following, by an apparent necessity, her emancipation by
her marriage from paternal power. The husband treated his wife as
his daughter, and not as his equal. Moreover, he had the power of
correction, and of life and death in case of adultery; but the exercise
of this last power seems to have been subject to the concurrence of the
council of her gens.

Unlike other people, the Romans possessed three forms of marriage. All
alike placed the wife in the hand of her husband, and recognized as the
chief end of marriage the procreation of children in lawful wedlock
(_liberorum querendorum causa_).[488] These forms (_confarreatio_,
_coëmptio_, and _usus_) lasted through the Republic, but fell out
under the Empire, when a fourth form, the free marriage, was generally
adopted, because it did not place the wife in the power of her husband.
Divorce, from the earliest period, was at the option of the parties, a
characteristic of the syndyasmian family, and transmitted probably from
that source. They rarely occurred, however, until near the close of the
Republic.[489]

The licentiousness which prevailed in Grecian and Roman cities at the
height of civilization has generally been regarded as a lapse from a
higher and purer condition of virtue and morality. But the fact is
capable of a different, or at least of a modified explanation. They
had never attained to a pure morality in the intercourse of the sexes
from which to decline. Repressed or moderated in the midst of war and
strife endangering the national existence, the license revived with
peace and prosperity, because the moral elements of society had not
risen against it for its extirpation. This licentiousness was, in all
probability, the remains of an ancient conjugal system, never fully
eradicated, which had followed down from barbarism as a social taint,
and now expressed its excesses in the new channel of hetærism. If the
Greeks and Romans had learned to respect the equities of monogamy,
instead of secluding their wives in the gynæconitis in one case, and
of holding them under power in the other, there is reason to believe
that society among them would have presented a very different aspect.
Since neither one nor the other had developed any higher morality, they
had but little occasion to mourn over a decay of public morals. The
substance of the explanation lies in the fact that neither recognized
in its integrity the principle of monogamy, which alone was able to
place their respective societies upon a moral basis. The premature
destruction of the ethnic life of these remarkable races is due in
no small measure to their failure to develop and utilize the mental,
moral and conservative forces of the female intellect, which were not
less essential than their own corresponding forces to their progress
and preservation. After a long protracted experience in barbarism,
during which they won the remaining elements of civilization, they
perished politically, at the end of a brief career, seemingly from the
exhilaration of the new life they had created.

Among the Hebrews, whilst the patriarchal family in the early period
was common with the chiefs, the monogamian, into which the patriarchal
soon subsided, was common among the people. But with respect to the
constitution of the latter, and the relations of husband and wife in
the family, the details are scanty.

Without seeking to multiply illustrations, it is plain that the
monogamian family had grown into the form in which it appeared, at
the commencement of the historical period, from a lower type; and
that during the classical period it advanced sensibly, though without
attaining its highest form. It evidently sprang from a previous
syndyasmian family as its immediate germ; and while improving with
human progress it fell short of its true ideal in the classical period.
Its highest known perfection, at least, was not attained until modern
times. The portraiture of society in the Upper Status of barbarism by
the early writers implies the general practice of monogamy, but with
attending circumstances indicating that it was the monogamian family
of the future struggling into existence under adverse influences,
feeble in vitality, rights and immunities, and still environed with the
remains of an ancient conjugal system.

As the Malayan system expressed the relationships that existed in the
consanguine family, and as the Turanian expressed those which existed
in the punaluan, so the Aryan expressed those which existed in the
monogamian; each family resting upon a different and distinct form of
marriage.

It cannot be shown absolutely, in the present state of our knowledge,
that the Aryan, Semitic and Uralian families of mankind formerly
possessed the Turanian system of consanguinity, and that it fell into
desuetude under monogamy. Such, however, would be the presumption
from the body of ascertained facts. All the evidence points in this
direction so decisively as to exclude any other hypothe