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watered by the Ohio, through Louisiana, without meeting a single family of savages.
The civilization of the Mexicans and Peruvians, as well as their populousness, make it extremely probable that they were the first inhabitants of America. In travelling northward, the people are more and more ignorant and savage: the Efquimaux, the most northern of all, are the most favage. In travelling southward, the Patagonians, the most southern of all, are so stupid as to go naked in a bitter cold region.
I venture still farther; which is, to indulge a conjecture, that America has not been peopled from any part of the old world. The external appearance of the inhabitants, makes this conjecture approach to a certainty; as they are widely different in appearance from any other known people. Excepting the eye-lashes, eyebrows, and hair of the head, which is invariably jet black, there is not a single hair on the body of any American : no appearance of a beard. Another diftinguishing mark is their copper colour, uniformly the same in all climates, hot and cold ; and differing from the colour of VoL, III, S
other nation. Ulloa remarks, that the Americans of Cape Breton, resemble the Peruvians, in complexion, in manners, and in customs; the only visible difference being, that the former are of a larger sta ture.
A third circumstance no less distinguishing is, that American children are born with down upon the skin, which difappears the eighth or ninth day, and never grows again. Children of the old world are born with skins smooth and polished, and no down
till puberty. The Esquimaux are a different race from the rest of the Americans, if we can have any
reliance on the most striking charac-, teristical marks. Of all the northern nations, not excepting the Laplanders, they are of the smallest size, few of them exceeding four feet in height. They have a head extremely gross, hands and feet very small. That they are tame and gentle appears from what Ellis says in his account of a voyage, anno 1747, for discovering a north-west passage, that they offered their wives to the sailors, with expressions of satisfaction for being able to accommodate them. But above all, their beard and complexion make the strongest
evidence of a distinct race. lately at London, two Esquimaux men and their wives ; and I have the best authority to affirm, that the men had a beard, thin indeed like that of a Nogayan Tartar; that they were not of a copper colour like the other Americans, but yellow like people in the North of Afia.
It has been lately discovered, that the language of the Esquimaux is the same with that of the Greenlanders. A Danish missionary, who by some years residence in Greenland had acquired the language of that country, made a voyage with Commodore Pallifer to Newfoundland ann. 1764. Meeting a company of about two hundred Esquimaux, he was agreeably furprised to hear the Greenland tongue. They received him kindly, and drew from him a promise to return the next year. And we are informed by Crantz, in his history of Greenland, that the fame Danish miffionary visited them the next year, in company with the Rev. Mr Drachart, They agreed, that the difference between the Esquimaux language and that of Greenland, was not greater than between the dialects of North and South Green
land, which differ not so much as the High and Low Dutch. Both nations call themfelves Innuit or Karalit, and call the Europeans Kablunet. Their stature, features, manners, dress, tents, darts, and boats, are entirely the same. As the language of Greenland resembles not the language of Finland, Lapland, Norway, Tartary, nor that of the Samoides, it is evident, that neither the Esquimaux nor Greenlanders are a colony from any of the countries mentioned. Geographers begin now to conjecture, that Greenland is a part of the continent of North America, without intervention of
sea * From the preceding facts it may be concluded with the highest probability, that the continent of America fouth of the river St Laurence was not peopled from Afia. Labrador on the north side of that river, is thin of inhabitants ; no people having been discovered there but the Ef
* The Danes had a settlement in Greenland long before Columbus saw the West Indies. Would it not appear paradoxical to say, that America was discovered by the Danes long before the time of Columbus, and long before they knew that they had made the discovery?
quimaux, quimaux, who are far from being numerous... As they have plenty of food at home, they never could have had any temptation to send colonies abroad. And there is not the flightest probability, that any other people more remote would, without necessity, wander far from home to people. Canada or any country farther south. But we are scarce left to a conjecture. The copper
colour of the Canadians, their want of beard, and other characteristical marks above mentioned, demonstrate them to be a race different from the Esquimaux, and different from any people inhabiting a country on the other side of Labrador. These distinguishing marks cannot be owing to the climate, which is the same on both sides of the river St Laurence. I.add, that as the copper colour and want of beard continue invariably the fame in every variety of climate, hot and cold, moist and dry, they must depend on some invariable cause acting uniformly; which may be a singularity in the race of people (a), but cannot proceed from the climate. If we can rely on the conjectures of an (a) Preliminary Discourse.