Chips from a German Workshop - Volume IV - Essays chiefly on the Science of Language
by Max Muller
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The question then arises, Could the Semitic and Aryan languages have been identical during the second or combinatory period? Here, as before, the answer must be, Ibelieve, decidedly negative, for not only are the empty words which are used for derivative purposes different in each, but, what is far more characteristic, the manner in which they are added to the stems is different too. In the Aryan languages formative elements are attached to the ends of words only; in the Semitic languages they are found both at the end and at the beginning. In the Aryan languages grammatical compounds are all according to the formula r#r#; in the Semitic we have formations after the formulas r#r#, #r#r, and #r#r#r#. [[r, rho; rho, r; rho, r, rho]]

There remains, therefore, the first or isolating stage only in which Semitic and Aryan speech might have been identical. But even here we must make a distinction. All Aryan roots are monosyllabic, all Semitic roots have been raised to triliteral form. Therefore it is only previous to the time when the Semitic roots assumed this secondary triliteral form that any community could possibly be admitted between these two streams of language. Supposing we knew as an historical fact that at this early period—a period which transcends the limits of everything we are accustomed to call historical—Semitic and Aryan speech had been identical, what evidence of this union could we expect to find in the actual Semitic and Aryan languages such as we know them in their inflectional period? Let us recollect that the 100,000 words of English, nay, the many hundred thousand words in all the dictionaries of the other Aryan languages, have been reduced to about 500 roots, and that this small number of roots admits of still further reduction. Let us, then, bear in mind that the same holds good with regard to the Semitic languages, particularly if we accept the reduction of all triliteral to biliteral roots. What, then, could we expect in our comparison of Hebrew and Sanskrit but a small number of radical coincidences, asimilarity in the form and meaning of about 500 radical syllables, everything else in Hebrew and Sanskrit being an after-growth, which could not begin before the two branches of speech were severed once and forever.

But more, if we look at these roots we shall find that their predicative power is throughout very general, and therefore liable to an infinite amount of specification. Aroot that means to fall (Sk.pat, pi-pt-) comes to mean to fly (Sk.ut-pat, petomai). The root d, which means to give, assumes, after the preposition , the sense of taking. The root yu, which means to join, means to separate if preceded by the preposition vi. The root ghar, which expresses brightness, may supply, and does supply in different Aryan languages, derivations expressive of brightness (gleam), warmth (Sk.gharma, heat), joy (chairein), love (charis), of the colors of green (Sk. hari), yellow (gilvus, flavus), and red (Sk.harit, fulvus), and of the conception of growing (ger-men). In the Semitic languages this vagueness of meaning in the radical elements forms one of the principal difficulties of the student, for according as a root is used in its different conjugations, it may convey the most startling variety of conception. It is also to be taken into account that out of the very limited number of roots which at that early time were used in common by the ancestors of the Aryan and Semitic races, acertain portion may have been lost by each, so that the fact that there are roots in Hebrew of which no trace exists in Sanskrit, and vice vers, would again be perfectly natural and intelligible.

It is right and most essential that we should see all this clearly, that we should understand how little evidence we are justified in expecting in support of a common origin of the Semitic and Aryan languages, before we commit ourselves to any opinion on this important subject. Ihave by no means exhausted all the influences that would naturally, nay necessarily, have contributed towards producing the differences between the radical elements of Aryan and Semitic speech, always supposing that the two sprang originally from the same source. Even if we excluded the ravages of phonetic decay from that early period of speech, we should have to make ample allowances for the influence of dialectic variety. We know in the Aryan languages the constant play between gutturals, dentals, and labials (quinque, Sk. panca, pente, ol. pempe, Goth. fimf). We know the dialectic interchange of Aspirate, Media, and Tenuis, which, from the very beginning, has imparted to the principal channels of Aryan speech their individual character (treis, Goth. threis, High German drei).[25] If this and much more could happen within the dialectic limits of one more or less settled body of speech, what must have been the chances beyond those limits? Considering how fatal to the identity of a word the change of a single consonant would be in monosyllabic languages, we might expect that monosyllabic roots, if their meaning was so general, vague, and changeable, would all the more carefully have preserved their consonantal outline. But this is by no means the case. Monosyllabic languages have their dialects no less than polysyllabic ones; and from the rapid and decisive divergence of such dialects, we may learn how rapid and decisive the divergence of language must have been during the isolating period. Mr. Edkins, who has paid particular attention to the dialects of Chinese, states that in the northern provinces the greatest changes have taken place, eight initial and one final consonant having been exchanged for others, and three finals lost. Along the southern bank of the Yang-ts-kiang, and a little to the north of it, the old initials are all preserved, as also through Chekiang to Fuh-kien. But among the finals, m is exchanged for n; t and p are lost, and also k, except in some country districts. Some words have two forms, one used colloquially, and one appropriated to reading. The former is the older pronunciation, and the latter more near to Mandarin. The cities of Su-cheu, Hang-cheu, Ningpo, and When-cheu, with the surrounding country, may be considered as having one dialect, spoken probably by thirty millions of people, i.e., by more than the whole population of Great Britain and Ireland. The city of Hwei-cheu has a dialect of its own, in which the soft initial consonants are exchanged for hard and aspirated ones, aprocess analogous to what we call Lautverschiebung in the Aryan languages. At Fu-cheu-fu, in the eastern part of the province of Kiang-si, the soft initials have likewise been replaced by aspirates. In many parts of the province of Hunan the soft initials still linger on; but in the city of Chang-sha the spoken dialect has the five tones of Mandarin, and the aspirated and other initials distributed in the same manner. In the island of Hai-nan there is a distinct approach to the form which Chinese words assume in the language of Annam. Many of the hard consonants are softened, instead of the reverse taking place as in many other parts of China. Thus ti, di, both ti in Mandarin, are both pronounced di in Hai-nan. B and p are both used for many words whose initials are w and f in Mandarin. In the dialects of the province of Fuhkien the following changes take place in initial consonants: k is used for h; p for f; m, b, for w; j for y; t for ch; ch for s; ng for i, y, w; n for j.[26] When we have clearly realized to ourselves what such changes mean in words consisting of one consonant and one vowel, we shall be more competent to act as judges, and to determine what right we have to call for more ample and more definite evidence in support of the common origin of languages which became separated during their monosyllabic or isolating stages, and which are not known to us before they are well advanced in the inflectional stage.

It might be said,—Why, if we make allowance for all this, the evidence really comes to nothing, and is hardly deserving of the attention of the scholar. Ido not deny that this is, and always has been my own opinion. All I wish to put clearly before other scholars is, that this is not our fault. We see why there can be no evidence, and we find there is no evidence, or very little support of a common origin of Semitic and Aryan speech. But that is very different from dogmatic assertions, so often and so confidently repeated, that there can be no kind of relationship between Sanskrit and Hebrew, that they must have had different beginnings, that they represent, in fact, two independent species of human speech. All this is pure dogmatism, and no true scholar will be satisfied with it, or turn away contemptuously from the tentative researches of scholars like Ewald, Raumer, and Ascoli. These scholars, particularly Raumer and Ascoli, have given us, as far as I can judge, far more evidence in support of a radical relationship between Hebrew and Sanskrit than, from my point of view, we are entitled to expect. Imean this as a caution in both directions. If, on one side, we ought not to demand more than we have a right to demand, we ought, on the other, not to look for, nor attempt to bring forward, more evidence than the nature of the case admits of. We know that words which have identically the same sound and meaning in Sanskrit, Greek, Latin, and German, cannot be the same words, because they would contravene those phonetic laws that made these languages to differ from each other. To doom cannot have any connection with the Latin damnare; to call cannot be the Greek kalein, the Latin calare; nor Greek phaulos the German faul; the English care cannot be identified with Latin cura, nor the German Auge with the Greek aug. The same applies, only with a hundred-fold greater force, to words in Hebrew and Sanskrit. If any triliteral root in Hebrew were to agree with a triliteral word in Sanskrit, we should feel certain, at once, that they are not the same, or that their similarity is purely accidental. Pronouns, numerals, and a few imitative rather than predicative names for father and mother, etc., may have been preserved from the earliest stage by the Aryan and Semitic speakers; but if scholars go beyond, and compare such words as Hebrew barak, to bless, and Latin precari; Hebrew lab, heart, and the English liver; Hebrew melech, king, and the Latin mulcere, to smoothe, to quiet, to subdue, they are in great danger, Ibelieve, of proving too much.

Attempts have lately been made to point out a number of roots which Chinese shares in common with Sanskrit. Far be it from me to stigmatize even such researches as unscientific, though it requires an effort for one brought up in the very straitest school of Bopp, to approach such inquiries without prejudice. Yet, if conducted with care and sobriety, and particularly with a clear perception of the limits within which such inquiries must be confined, they are perfectly legitimate; far more so than the learned dogmatism with which some of our most eminent scholars have declared a common origin of Sanskrit and Chinese as out of the question. Icannot bring myself to say that the method which Mr. Chalmers adopts in his interesting work on the "Origin of Chinese" is likely to carry conviction to the mind of the bon fide skeptic. Ibelieve, before we compare the words of Chinese with those of any other language, every effort should be made to trace Chinese words back to their most primitive form. Here Mr. Edkins has pointed out the road that ought to be followed, and has clearly shown the great advantage to be derived from an accurate study of Chinese dialects. The same scholar has done still more by pointing out how Chinese should at first be compared with its nearest relatives, the Mongolian of the North-Turanian, and the Tibetan of the South-Turanian class, before any comparisons are attempted with more distant colonies that started during the monosyllabic period of speech. "Iam now seeking to compare," he writes, "the Mongolian and Tibetan with the Chinese, and have already obtained some interesting results:—

"1. A large proportion of Mongol words are Chinese. Perhaps a fifth are so. The identity is in the first syllable of the Mongol words, that being the root. The correspondence is most striking in the adjectives, of which perhaps one half of the most common are the same radically as in Chinese; e.g., sain, good; begen, low; ic'hi, right; sologai, left; c'hihe, straight; gadan, outside; c'hohon, few; logon, green; hung-gun, light (not heavy). But the identity is also extensive in other parts of speech, and this identity of common roots seems to extend into the Turkish, Tatar, etc.; e.g., su, water; tenri, heaven.

"2. To compare Mongol with Chinese it is necessary to go back at least six centuries in the development of the Chinese language. For we find in common roots final letters peculiar to the old Chinese, e.g., final m. The initial letters also need to be considered from another standpoint than the Mandarin pronunciation. If a large number of words are common to Chinese, Mongol, and Tatar, we must go back at least twelve centuries to obtain a convenient epoch of comparison.

"3. While the Mongol has no traces of tones, they are very distinctly developed in Tibetan. Csoma de Krs and Schmidt do not mention the existence of tones, but they plainly occur in the pronunciation of native Tibetans resident in Peking.

"4. As in the case of the comparison with Mongol, it is necessary in examining the connection of Tibetan with Chinese to adopt the old form of the Chinese with its more numerous final consonants, and its full system of soft, hard, and aspirated initials. The Tibetan numerals exemplify this with sufficient clearness.

"5. While the Mongol is near the Chinese in the extensive prevalence of words common to the two languages, the Tibetan is near in phonal structure, as being tonic and monosyllabic. This being so, it is less remarkable that there are many words common to Chinese and Tibetan, for it might have been expected; but that there should be perhaps as many in the Mongol with its long untoned polysyllables, is a curious circumstance."[27]

This is no doubt the right spirit in which researches into the early history of language should be conducted, and I hope that Mr. Edkins, Mr. Chalmers, and others, will not allow themselves to be discouraged by the ordinary objections that are brought against all tentative studies. Even if their researches should only lead to negative results, they would be of the highest importance. The criterion by which we test the relationship of inflectional languages, such as Sanskrit and Greek, Hebrew and Arabic, cannot, from the nature of the case, be applied to languages which are still in the combinatory or isolating stratum, nor would they answer any purpose, if we tried by them to determine whether certain languages, separated during their inflectional growth, had been united during their combinatory stage, or whether languages, separated during their combinatory progress, had started from a common centre in their monosyllabic age. Bopp's attempt to work with his Aryan tools on the Malayo-Polynesian languages, and to discover in them traces of Aryan forms, ought to serve as a warning example.

However, there are dangers also, and even greater dangers, on the opposite shore, and if Mr. Chalmers in his interesting work on "the Origin of Chinese," compares, for instance, the Chinese tz, child, with the Bohemian tsi, daughter, Iknow that the indignation of the Aryan scholars will be roused to a very high pitch, considering how they have proved most minutely that tsi or dci in Bohemian is the regular modification of dugte, and that dugte is the Sanskrit duhitar, the Greek thugatr, daughter, originally a pet-name, meaning a milk-maid, and given by the Aryan shepherds, and by them only, to the daughters of their house. Such accidents[28] will happen in so comprehensive a subject as the Science of Language. They have happened to scholars like Bopp, Grimm, and Burnouf, and they will happen again. Ido not defend haste or inaccuracy, Ionly say, we must venture on, and not imagine that all is done, and that nothing remains to conquer in our science. Our watchword, here as elsewhere, should be Festina lente! but, by all means, Festina! Festina! Festina!

Part II.


In a former Lecture on the "Stratification of Language" I ventured to assert that wherever inflection has yielded to a rational analysis, it has invariably been recognized as the result of a previous combination, and wherever combination has been traced back to an earlier stage, that earlier stage has been simply juxtaposition.

Professor Pott in his "Etymologische Forschungen" (1871, p. 16), awork which worthily holds its place by the side of Bopp's "Comparative Grammar," questions the correctness of that statement; but in doing so he seems to me to have overlooked the restrictions which I myself had introduced, in order to avoid the danger of committing myself to what might seem too general a statement. Idid not say that every form of inflection had been proved to spring from a previous combination, but I spoke of those cases only where we have succeeded in a rational analysis of inflectional forms, and it was in these that I maintained that inflection had always been found to be the result of previous combination. What is the object of the analysis of grammatical inflections, or of Comparative Grammar in general, if not to find out what terminations originally were, before they had assumed a purely formal character? If we take the French adverb sincrement, sincerely, and trace it back to the Latin sincer mente, we have for a second time the three stages of juxtaposition, combination, and, to a certain extent, inflection, repeated before our eyes. Isay, inflection, for ment, though originally an independent word, soon becomes a mere adverbial suffix, the speakers so little thinking of its original purport, that we may say of a stone that it falls lourdement, heavily, without wishing to imply that it falls lurid mente, with a heavy, lit., with a lurid mind.

If we take the nom. sing. of a noun in Sanskrit, Greek, or Latin, we find that masculine nouns end frequently in s. We have for instance, Sk. ve{s}a-s, Gr. oiko-s, Lat. vcu-s. These three words are identical in their termination, in their base, and in their root. The root is the Sk. vi{s}, to settle down, to enter upon or into a thing. This root, without undergoing any further change, may answer the purpose both of a verbal and a nominal base. In the precative, for instance, we have vi{s}-y-t, he may enter, which yields to a rational analysis into vi{s}, the root y, to go, and the old pronominal stem of the third person, t, he. We reduplicate the root, and we get the perfect vi-vi{s}-us, they have entered. Here I can understand that objections might be raised against accepting us as a mere phonetic corruption of ant and anti; but if, as in Greek, we find as the termination of the third pers. plur. of the perfect si, we know that this is a merely phonetic change of the original anti,[29] and this anti has been traced back by Pott himself (whether rightly or wrongly, we need not here inquire) to the pronominal stems ana, that, and ti, he. These two stems, when joined together, become anti,[30] meaning those and he, and are gradually reduced to si, and in Sanskrit to us for ant. What we call reduplication has likewise been traced back by Pott himself to an original repetition of the whole root, so that vi-vi{s} stands for an original or intentional vi{s}-vi{s}; thus showing again the succession of the three stages, juxtaposition, vi{s}-vi{s}, combination vi-vi{s}, inflection, the same, vi-vi{s}, though liable to further phonetic modification.

Used as a nominal base the same root vi{s} appears, without any change, in the nom. plur. vi{s}-as, the settlers, the clans, the people. Now here again Professor Pott himself has endeavored to explain the inflection as by tracing it back to the pronominal base as, in asau, ille. He therefore takes the plural vi{s}-as as a compound, meaning "man and that;" that is to say, he traces the inflection back to a combinatory origin.

By raising the simple base vi{s} to vi{s}a, we arrive at new verbal forms, such as vi{s}—mi, I enter, vi{s}-a-si, thou enterest, vi{s}-a-ti, he enters. In all these inflectional forms, the antecedent combinatory stage is still more or less visible, for mi, si, ti, whatever their exact history may have been, are clearly varieties of the pronominal bases of the first, second, and third persons, ma, tva, ta.

Lastly, by raising vi{s} to ve{s}a, we arrive at a new nominal base, and by adding to it the stem of a demonstrative pronoun s, we form the so-called nom. sing. ve{s}a-s, oiko-s, vicu-s, from which we started, meaning originally house-here, this house, the house.

In all this Professor Pott would fully agree, but where he would differ, would be when we proceed to generalize, and to lay it down as an axiom, that all inflectional forms must have had the same combinatory origin. He may be right in thus guarding against too hasty generalization, to which we are but too prone in all inductive sciences. Iam well aware that there are many inflections which have not yielded, as yet, to any rational analysis, but, with that reservation, Ithought, and I still think, it right to say that, until some other process of forming those inflections has been pointed out, inflection may be considered as the invariable result of combination.

It is impossible in writing, always to repeat such qualifications and reservations. They must be taken as understood. Take for instance the augment in Greek and Sanskrit. Some scholars have explained it as a negative particle, others as a demonstrative pronoun; others, again, took it as a mere symbol of differentiation. If the last explanation could be established by more general analogies, then, no doubt, we should have here an inflection, that cannot be referred to combination. Again, it would be difficult to say, what independent element was added to the pronoun sa, he, in order to make it s, she. This, too, may, for all we know, be a case of phonetic symbolism, and, if so, it should be treated on its own merits. The lengthening of the vowel in the subjunctive mood was formerly represented by Professor Curtius as a symbolic expression of hesitation, but he has lately recalled that explanation as untenable. Ipointed out that when in Hebrew we meet with such forms as Piel and Pual, Hiphil and Hophal, we feel tempted to admit formative agencies, different from mere juxtaposition and combination. But before we admit this purely phonetic symbolism, we should bear in mind that the changes of bruder, brother, into brder, brethren, of Ich weiss, I know, into wir wissen, we know, which seem at first sight purely phonetic, have after all been proved to be the indirect result of juxtaposition and combination, so that we ought to be extremely careful and first exhaust every possible rational explanation, before we have recourse to phonetic symbolism as an element in the production of inflection forms.

The chief object, however, of my lecture on the "Stratification of Language" was not so much to show that inflection everywhere presupposes combination, and combination juxtaposition, but rather to call attention to a fact that had not been noticed before, viz.: that there is hardly any language, which is not at the same time isolating, combinatory, and inflectional.

It had been the custom in classifying languages morphologically to represent some languages, for instance Chinese, as isolating; others, such as Turkish or Finnish, as combinatory; others, such as Sanskrit or Hebrew, as inflectional. Without contesting the value of this classification for certain purposes, Ipointed out that even Chinese, the very type of the isolating class, is not free from combinatory forms, and that the more highly developed among the combinatory languages, such as Hungarian, Finnish, Tamil, etc., show the clearest traces of incipient inflection. "The difficulty is not," as I said, "to show the transition of one stratum of speech into another, but rather to draw a sharp line between the different strata. The same, difficulty was felt in Geology, and led Sir Charles Lyell to invent such pliant names as Eocene, Meiocene, and Pleiocene, names which indicate a mere dawn, aminority, or a majority of new formations, but do not draw a fast and hard line, cutting off one stratum from the other. Natural growth and even merely mechanical accumulation and accretion, here as elsewhere, are so minute and almost imperceptible that they defy all strict scientific terminology, and force upon us the lesson that we must be satisfied with an approximate accuracy."

Holding these opinions, and having established them by an amount of evidence which, though it might easily be increased, seemed to me sufficient, Idid not think it safe to assign to the three stages in the history of the Aryan languages, the juxtapositional, the combinatory, and the inflectional, a strictly successive character, still less to admit in the growth of the Aryan languages a number of definite stages, which should be sharply separated from each other, and assume an almost chronological character. Ifully admit that wherever inflectional forms in the Aryan languages have yielded to a rational analysis, we see that they are preceded chronologically by combinatory formations; nor should I deny for one moment that combinatory forms presuppose an antecedent, and therefore chronologically more ancient stage of mere juxtaposition. What I doubt is whether, as soon as combination sets in, juxtaposition ceases, and whether the first appearance of inflection puts an end to the continued working of combination.

It seems to me, even if we argue only on priori grounds, that there must have been at least a period of transition during which both principles were at work together, and I hardly can understand what certain scholars mean if they represent the principle of inflection as a sudden psychological change which, as soon as it has taken place, makes a return to combination altogether impossible. If, instead of arguing priori, we look the facts of language in the face, we cannot help seeing that, even after that period during which it is supposed that the United Aryan language had attained its full development, Imean at a time when Sanskrit, Greek, and Latin had become completely separated, as so many national dialects, each with its own fully developed inflectional grammar, the power of combination was by no means extinct. The free power of composition, which is so manifest in Sanskrit and Greek, testifies to the continued working of combination in strictly historical times. Isee no real distinction between the transition of Na plis, i.e., new town, into Nepolis, and into Naples, and the most primitive combination in Chinese, and I maintain that as long as a language retains that unbounded faculty of composition, which we see in Sanskrit, in Greek, and in German, the growth of new inflectional forms from combinatory germs must be admitted as possible. Forms such as the passive aorist in Greek, etethn, or the weak preterite in Gothic nas-i-da, nas-i-ddjau, need not have been formed before the Aryan family broke up into national languages; and forms such as Italian meco, fratelmo, or the future avro, I shall have, though not exactly of the same workmanship, show at all events that analogous powers are at work even in the latest periods of linguistic growth.

Holding these opinions, which, as far as I know, have never been controverted, Iought perhaps, when I came to publish the preceding Lecture, to have defended my position against the powerful arguments advanced in the meantime by my old friend, Professor G.Curtius, in support of a diametrically opposite opinion in his classical essay, "On the Chronology of the Indo-Germanic Languages," published in 1867, new edition, 1873. While I had endeavored to show that juxtaposition, combination, and inflection, though following each other in succession, do not represent chronological periods, but represent phases, strongly developed, it is true, in certain languages, but extending their influence far beyond the limits commonly assigned to them, Professor Curtius tried to establish the chronological character not only of these three, but of four other phases or periods in the history of Aryan speech. Confining himself to what he considers the undivided Aryan language to have been, before it was broken up into national dialects, such as Sanskrit, Greek, and Latin, he proceeds to subdivide the antecedent period of its growth into seven definite stages, each marked by a definite character, and each representing a sum of years in the chronology of the Aryan language. As I had found it difficult to treat Chinese as entirely juxtapositional, or Turkish as entirely combinatory, or Sanskrit as entirely inflectional, it was perhaps not to be wondered at that not even the persuasive pleading of my learned friend could convince me of the truth of the more minute chronological division proposed by him in his learned essay. But it would hardly have been fair if, on the present occasion, Ihad reprinted my "Rede Lecture" without explaining why I had altered nothing in my theory of linguistic growth, why I retained these three phases and no more, and why I treated even these, not as chronological periods, in the strict sense of the word, but as preponderating tendencies, giving an individual character to certain classes of language, without being totally absent in others. Professor Curtius is one of the few scholars with whom it is pleasant to differ. He has shown again and again that what he cares for is truth, not victory, and when he has defended his position against attacks not always courteous, he has invariably done so, not with hard words, but with hard arguments. Itherefore feel no hesitation in stating plainly to him where his theories seem to me either not fully supported, or even contradicted by the facts of language, and I trust that this free exchange of ideas, though in public, will be as pleasant as our conversations in private used to be, now more than thirty years ago.

Let us begin with the First Period, which Professor Curtius calls the Root-Period. There must have been, as I tried to explain before, aperiod for the Aryan languages, during which they stood on a level with Chinese, using nothing but roots, or radical words, without having reduced any of them to a purely formal character, without having gone through the process of changing what Chinese grammarians call full words into empty words. Ihave always held, that to speak of roots as mere abstractions, as the result of grammatical theory, is self-contradictory. Roots which never had any real or historical existence may have been invented both in modern and ancient collections or Dhtup{t}has; but that is simply the fault of our etymological analysis, and in no way affects the fact, that the Aryan, like all other languages we know, began with roots. We may doubt the legitimacy of certain chemical elements, but not the reality of chemical elements in general. Language, in the sense in which we use the word, begins with roots, which are not only the ultimate facts for the Science of Language, but real facts in the history of human speech. To deny their historical reality would be tantamount to denying cause and effect.

Logically, no doubt, it is possible to distinguish between a root as a mere postulate, and a root used as an actual word. That distinction has been carefully elaborated by Indian grammarians and philosophers, but it does in no way concern us in purely historical researches. What I mean by a root used in real language is this: when we analyze a cluster of Sanskrit words, such as yodha-s, a fighter, yodhaka-s, a fighter, yoddh, a fighter, yodhana-m, fighting, yuddhi-s, a fight, yuyutsu-s, wishing to fight, -yudha-m, a weapon, we easily see that they presuppose an element yudh, to fight, and that they are all derived from that element by well-known grammatical suffixes. Now is this yudh, which we call the root of all these words, amere abstraction? Far from it. We find it as yudh used in the Veda either as a nominal or as a verbal base, according to suffixes by which it is followed. Thus yudh by itself would be a fighter, only that dh when final, has to be changed intot. We have goshu-ydh-am, an accusative, the fighter among cows. In the plural we have ydh-as, fighters; in the locative yudh-i, in the fight; in the instrumental, yudh-, with the weapon. That is to say, we find that as a nominal base, yudh, without any determinative suffixes, may express fighting, the place of fighting, the instrument of fighting, and a fighter. If our grammatical analysis is right, we should have yudh as a nominal base in ydh-ya-ti, lit. he goes to fighting, yudh-y-te, pass.; (a)-yut-smahi, aor., either we were to fight, or we were fighters; y-yut-sa-ti, he is to fight-fight; yudh-ya-s, to be fought (p.94), etc. As a verbal base we find yudh, for instance, or yu-yudh-e, I have fought; in a-yud-dha, for a-yudh-ta, he fought. In the other Aryan languages this root has left hardly any traces; yet the Greek husmin, and husmin would be impossible without the root yudh.

The only difference between Chinese and these Sanskrit forms which we have just examined, is that while in Chinese such a form as yudh-i, in the battle, would have for its last element a word clearly meaning middle, and having an independent accent, Sanskrit has lost the consciousness of the original material meaning of the i of the locative, and uses it traditionally as an empty word, as a formal element, as a mere termination.

I also agree with Curtius that during the earliest stage, not of Sanskrit, but of Aryan speech in general, we have to admit two classes of roots, the predicative and demonstrative, and that what we now call the plural of yudh, yudh-as, fighters, was, or may have been, originally a compound consisting of the predicative root yudh, and the demonstrative root, as or sa, possibly repeated twice, meaning "fight-he-he," or "fight-there-there," i.e., fighters.

There is another point with regard to the character of this earliest radical stage of the Aryan language, on which formally I should have agreed with Curtius, but where now I begin to feel more doubtful,—I mean the necessarily monosyllabic form of all original roots. There is, no doubt, much to be said for this view. We always like to begin with what is simple. We imagine, as it has been said, that "the simple idea must break forth, like lightning, in a simple body of sound, to be perceived in one single moment." But, on the other hand, the simple, so far as it is the general, is frequently, to us at least, the last result of repeated complex conceptions, and therefore there is at all events no priori argument against treating the simplest roots as the latest, rather than the earliest products of language. Languages in a low state of development are rich in words expressive of the most minute differences, they are poor in general expressions, afact which ought to be taken into account as an important qualification of a remark made by Curtius that language supplies necessaries first, luxuries afterwards (p.32). Iquote the following excellent remarks from Mr. Sayce's "Principles of comparative Philology" (p.208): "Among modern savages the individual objects of sense have names enough, while general terms are very rare. The Mohicans have words for cutting various objects, but none to signify cutting simple."[31] In taking this view we certainly are better able to explain the actual forms of the Aryan roots, viz., by elimination, rather than by composition. If we look for instance, as I did myself formerly, on such roots as yudh, yuj, and yau{t}, as developed from the simpler root yu, or on mardh, marg, mark, marp, mard, smar, as developed from mar, then we are bound to account for the modificatory elements, such as dh, g, k, p, d, s, n, t, r, as remnants of other roots, whether predicative or demonstrative. Thus Curtius compares tar or tra, with tras, tram, trak, trap; tri and tru with trup, trib, taking the final consonants as modificatory letters. But what are these modificatory letters? Every attempt to account for them has failed. If it could be proved that these modificatory elements, which Curtius calls Determinatives, produced always the same modification of meaning, they might then be classed with the verbal suffixes which change simple verbs into causative, desiderative, or intensive verbs. But this is not the case. On the other hand, it would be perfectly intelligible that such roots as mark, marg, mard, mardh, expressing different kinds of crushing, became fixed side by side, that by a process of elimination, their distinguishing features were gradually removed, and the root mar left as the simplest form, expressive of the most general meaning. Without entering here on that process of mutual friction by which I believe that the development of roots can best be explained, we may say at least so much, that whatever process will account for the root yu, will likewise account for the root yuj, nay, that roots like mark or mard are more graphic, expressive, and more easily intelligible than the root mar.

However, if this view of the origin of roots has to be adopted, it need not altogether exclude the other view. In the process of simplification, certain final letters may have become typical, may have seemed invested with a certain function or determinative power, and may therefore have been added independently to other roots, by that powerful imitative tendency which asserts itself again and again through the whole working of language. But however that may be, the sharp line of distinction which Curtius draws between the First Period, represented by simple, and the Second Period represented by derivative roots, seems certainly no longer tenable, least of all as dividing chronologically two distinct periods in the growth of language.

When we approach the Third Period, it might seem that here, at least, there could be no difference of opinion between Professor Curtius and myself. That Third Period represents simply what I called the first setting in of combination, following after the isolating stage. Curtius calls it the primary verbal period, and ascribes to it the origin of such combinatory forms as d-ma, give-I, d-tva, give-thou, d-ta, give-he; d-ma-tvi, give-we, d-tva-tvi, give-you, d-(a)nti, give-they. These verbal forms he considers as much earlier than any attempts at declension in nouns. No one who has read Curtius' arguments in support of this chronological arrangement would deny their extreme plausibility; but there are grave difficulties which made me hesitate in adopting this hypothetical framework of linguistic chronology. Ishall only mention one, which seemed to me insurmountable. We know that during what we called the First Radical Period the sway of phonetic laws was already so firmly established, that, from that period onward to the present day, we can say, with perfect certainty, which phonetic changes are possible, and which are not. It is through these phonetic laws that the most distant past in the history of the Aryan language is connected with the present. It is on them that the whole science of etymology is founded. Only because a certain root has a tenuis, amedia, an aspirate, or a sibilant, is it possible to keep it distinct from other roots. If t and s could be interchanged, then the root tar, to cross, would not be distinct from the root sar, to go. If d and dh could vary, then dar, to tear, would run together with dhar, to hold. These phonetic distinctions were firmly established in the radical period, and continue to be maintained, both in the undivided Aryan speech, and in the divided national dialects, such as Sanskrit, Greek, Latin, and Gothic. How then can we allow an intervening period, during which ma-tvi, could become masi, tva-tvi, thas, and the same tva-tvi appear also as sai? Such changes, always most startling, may have been possible in earlier periods; but when phonetic order had once been established, as it was in what Curtius calls his first and second periods, to admit them as possible, would be, as far as I can judge, to admit a complete anachronism. Of two things one; either we must altogether surrender those chaotic changes which are required for identifying Sanskrit e with Greek mai, and Greek mai with m-ma, etc., or we must throw them back to a period anterior to the final settlement of the Aryan roots.

I now proceed to point out a second difficulty. If Curtius uses these same personal terminations, masi, tvasi, and anti, as proof positive that they must have been compounded out of +ma+ + +tva+, and tva-tva, before there were any case terminations, Ido not think his argument is quite stringent. Curtius says: "If plural suffixes had existed before the coining of these terminations, we should expect them here, as well as in the noun" (p.33). But the plural of the pronoun I could never have been formed by a plural suffix, like the plural of horse. I admits of no plural, as little as thou, and hence the plural of these very pronouns in the Aryan language is not formed by the mere addition of a plural termination, but by a new base. We say I, but we; thou but you, and so through all the Aryan languages. According to Curtius himself, masi, the termination of the plural, is not formed by repeating ma, by saying I and I, but by ma and tva, I and thou, the most primitive way, he thinks, of expressing we. The termination of the second person plural might be expressed by repeating thou. "You did it," might have been rendered by "thou and thou did it;" but hardly by treating thou like a noun, and adding to it a plural termination. The absence of plural terminations, therefore at the end of the personal suffixes of the verbs, does not prove, as far as I can see, that plurals of nouns were unknown when the first, second, and third persons plural of the Aryan verbs were called into existence.

Again, if Curtius says, that "what language has once learnt, it does not forget again, and that therefore if the plural had once found expression in nouns, the verb would have claimed the same distinction," is true, no doubt, in many cases, but not so generally true as to supply a safe footing for a deductive argument. In so late a formation as the periphrastic future in Sanskrit, we say dt-sma{h}, as it were dator sumus, not dtra{h} sma{h}; and in the second person plural of the passive in Latin amamini, though the plural is marked, the gender is always disregarded.

Further, even if we admit with Bopp and Curtius that the terminations of the medium are composed of two pronouns, that the ta of the third person singular stands for ta-ti, to-him-he, that kaluptetai in fact meant originally hide-himself-he, it does not follow that in such a compound one pronominal element should have taken the termination of the accusative, any more than the other takes the termination of the nominative. The first element in every composition takes necessarily its Pada or thematic form; the second or final element has suffered so much, according to Bopp's own explanation, that nothing would be easier to explain than the disappearance of a final consonant, if it had existed. The absence of case-terminations in such compounds cannot therefore be used as proof of the non-existence of case-terminations at a time when the medial and other personal endings took their origin. On the contrary, these terminations seem to me to indicate, though I do not say to prove, that the conception of a subjective, as distinct from an objective case, had been fully realized by those who framed them. Ido not myself venture to speak very positively of such minute processes of analysis as that which discovers in the Sk. first pers. sing. ind. pres. of the middle, tude, Istrike, an original +tuda+ + a + i, +tuda+ + +ma+ + i, +tuda+ + +ma+ + +mi+, tuda + +m+ + +ma+, but admitting that the middle was formed in that way, and that it meant originally strike-to-me-I, then surely we have in the first m an oblique case, and in the compound itself the clearest indication that the distinction between a nominative and an oblique case, whether dative or accusative, was no longer a mystery. Anyhow, and this is the real point at issue, the presence of such compounds as m-ma, to-me-I, is in no way a proof that at the time of their formation people could not distinguish between yudh (s), nom., afighter, and yudh (am), acc., afighter; and we must wait for more irrefragable evidence before admitting, what would under all circumstances be a most startling conclusion, namely, that the Aryan language was spoken for a long time without case-terminations, but with a complete set of personal terminations, both in the singular and the plural. For though it is quite true that the want of cases could only be felt in a sentence, the same seems to me to apply to personal terminations of the verb. The one, in most languages we know, implies the other, and the very question whether conjugation or declension came first is one of those dangerous questions which take something for granted which has never been proved.

During all this time, according to Curtius, our Aryan language would have consisted of nothing but roots, used for nominal and verbal purposes, but without any purely derivative suffixes, whether verbal or nominal, and without declension. The only advance, in fact, made beyond the purely Chinese standard, would have consisted in a few combinations of personal pronouns with verbal stems, which combinations assumed rapidly a typical character, and led to the formation of a skeleton of conjugation, containing a present, an aorist with an augment, and a reduplicated perfect. Why, during the same period, nominal bases should not have assumed at least some case-terminations, does not appear; and it certainly seems strange that people who could say vak-ti, speak-he, vak-anti, speak-this-he, should not have been able to say vk-s, whether in the sense of speak-there, i.e., speech or speak-there, i.e., speaker.

The next step which, according to Curtius, the Aryan language had to make, in order to emerge from its purely radical phase, was the creation of bases, both verbal and nominal, by the addition of verbal and nominal suffixes to roots, both primary and secondary. Curtius calls this fourth the Period of the Formation of Themes. The suffixes are very numerous, and it is by them that the Aryan languages have been able to make their limited number of roots supply the vast materials of their dictionary. From bhar, to carry, they formed bhar-a, a carrier, but sometimes also a burden. In addition to bhar-ti, carry-he, they formed bhara-ti, meaning possibly carrying-he. The growth of these early themes may have been very luxuriant, and, as Professor Curtius expresses it, chiefly paraschematic. It may have been left to a later age to assign to that large number of possible synonyms more definite meanings. Thus from pher, Icarry, we have phora, the act of carrying, used also in the sense of impetus (being carried away), and of provectus, i.e., what is brought in. Phoros means carrying, but also violent, and lucrative; pheretron, an instrument of carrying, means a bier; pharetra, aquiver, for carrying arrows. Phormos comes to mean a basket; phortos, aburden; phoros, tribute.

All this is perfectly intelligible, both with regard to nominal and verbal themes. Curtius admits four kinds of verbal themes as the outcome of his Fourth Period. He had assigned to his Third Period the simple verbal themes es-ti, and the reduplicated themes such as did-si. To these were added, in the Fourth Period, the following four secondary themes:—

(1) plek-e-(t)-i Sanskrit lipa-ti (2) aleiph-e-(t)-i " laipa-ti (3) deik-nu-si " lip-nau-ti (4) dam-n-si " lip-n-ti.

He also explains the formation of the subjunctive in analogy with bases such as lipa-ti, as derived from lip-ti.

Some scholars would probably feel inclined to add one or two of the more primitive verbal themes, such as

limpa-ti rumpo limpana-ti lambane(t)i

but all would probably agree with Curtius in placing the formation of these themes, both verbal and nominal, between the radical and the latest inflectional period. Apoint, however, on which there would probably be considerable difference of opinion is this, whether it is credible, that at a time when so many nominal themes were formed,—for Curtius ascribes to this Fourth Period the formation of such nominal bases as

log-o, intellect, = lipa-ti loip-o, left, = laipa-ti lig-nu, smoke, = lip-nau-ti daph-n, laurel, = lip-n-ti

the simplest nominal compounds, which we now call nominative and accusative, singular and plural, were still unknown; that people could say dh{ri}sh-nu-ms, we dare, but not dh{ri}sh-{n}-s, daring-he; that they had an imperative, dh{ri}sh{n}uh, dare, but not a vocative, dh{ri}sh{n}o? Curtius strongly holds to that opinion, but with regard to this period too, he does not seem to me to establish it by a regular and complete argument. Some arguments which he refers to occasionally have been answered before. Another, which he brings in incidentally, when discussing the abbreviation of certain suffixes, can hardly be said to carry conviction. After tracing the suffixes ant and tar back to what he supposes to have been their more primitive forms, an-ta and ta-ra, he remarks that the dropping of the final vowel would hardly be conceivable at a time when there existed case-terminations. Still this dropping of the vowel is very common, in late historical times, in Latin, for instance, and other Italian dialects, where it causes frequent confusion and heteroclitism.[32] Thus the Augustan innocua was shortened in common pronunciation to innoca, and this dwindles down in Christian inscriptions to innox. In Greek, too, diaktoros is older than diaktr; phulakos older than phulax.

Nor can it be admitted that the nominal suffixes have suffered less from phonetic corruption than the terminations of the verb, and that therefore they must belong to a more modern period (pp.39,40). In spite of all the changes which the personal terminations are supposed to have undergone, their connection with the personal pronouns has always been apparent, while the tracing back of the nominal suffixes, and, still more, of the case-terminations to their typical elements, forms still one of the greatest difficulties of comparative grammarians.[33]

Professor Curtius is so much impressed with the later origin of declension that he establishes one more period, the fifth, to which he assigns the growth of all compound verbal forms, compound stems, compound tenses, and compound moods, before he allows the first beginnings of declension, and the formation even of such simple forms as the nominative and accusative. It is difficult, no doubt, to disprove such an opinion by facts or dates, because there are none to be found on either side: but we have a right to expect very strong arguments indeed, before we can admit that at a time when an aorist, like edeik-sa, Sanskrit a-dik-sha-t was possible, that is to say, at a time when the verb as, which meant originally to breathe, had by constant use been reduced to the meaning of being; at a time when that verb, as a mere auxiliary, was joined to a verbal base in order to impart to it a general historical power; when the persons of the verb were distinguished by pronominal elements, and when the augment, no longer purely demonstrative, had become the symbol of time past, that at such a time people were still unable to distinguish, except by a kind of Chinese law of position, between "the father struck the child," and "the child struck the father." Before we can admit this, we want much stronger proofs than any adduced by Curtius. He says, for instance, that compound verbal bases formed with y, to go, and afterwards fixed as causatives, would be inconceivable during a period in which accusatives existed. From na{s}, to perish, we form in Sanskrit n{s}a-ymi, I make perish. This, according to Curtius, would have meant originally, Isend to perishing. Therefore n{s}a would have been, in the accusative, n{s}am, and the causative would have been n{s}amymi, if the accusative had then been known. But we have in Latin[34] pessum dare, venum ire, and no one would say that compounds like calefacio, liquefacio, putrefacio, were impossible after the first Aryan separation, or after that still earlier period to which Curtius assigns the formation of the Aryan case-terminations. Does Professor Curtius hold that compound forms like Gothic nasi-da were formed not only before the Aryan separation, but before the introduction of case-terminations? Ihold, on the contrary, that such really old compositions never required, nay never admitted, the accusative. We say in Sanskrit, dyu-gat, going to the sky, dyu-ksha, dwelling in the sky, without any case-terminations at the end of the first part of the compound. We say in Greek, sakes-palos, not sakos-palos, paidophonos, not paidaphonos, ores-kios, mountain-bred, and also oresi-trophos, mountain-fed. We say in Latin, agri-cola, not agrum-cola, fratri-cɨda, not fratrem-cɨda, rɇgĭfugium, not regis-fugium. Are we to suppose that all these words were formed before there was an outward mark of distinction between nominative and accusative in the primitive Aryan language? Such compounds, we know, can be formed at pleasure, and they continued to be formed long after the full development of the Aryan declension, and the same would apply to the compound stems of causal verbs. To say, as Curtius does, that composition was possible only before the development of declension, because when cases had once sprung up, the people would no longer have known the bases of nouns, is far too strong an assertion. In Sanskrit[35] the really difficult bases are generally sufficiently visible in the so-called Pada, cases, i.e., before certain terminations beginning with consonants, and there is besides a strong feeling of analogy in language, which would generally, though not always (for compounds are frequently framed by false analogy), guide the framers of new compounds rightly in the selection of the proper nominal base. It seems to me that even with us there is still a kind of instinctive feeling against using nouns, articulated with case-terminations, for purposes of composition, although there are exceptions to that rule in ancient, and many more in modern languages. We can hardly realize to ourselves a Latin pontemfex, or pontisfex, still less ponsfex instead of pontifex, and when the Romans drove away their kings, they did not speak of a regisfugium or a regumfugium, but they took, by habit or by instinct, the base regi, though none of them, if they had been asked, knew what a base was. Composition, we ought not to forget, is after all only another name for combination, and the very essence of combination consists in joining together words which are not yet articulated grammatically. Whenever we form compounds, such as railway, we are still moving in the combinatory stage, and we have the strongest proof that the life of language is not capable of chronological division. There was a period in the growth of the Aryan language when the principle of combination preponderated, when inflection was as yet unknown. But inflection itself was the result of combination, and unless combination had continued long after inflection set in, the very life of language would have become extinct.

I have thus tried to explain why I cannot accept the fundamental fact on which the seven-fold division of the history of the Aryan language is founded, viz., that the combinatory process which led to the Aryan system of conjugation would have been impossible, if at the time nominal bases had already been articulated with terminations of case and number. Isee no reason why the earliest case-formations, Imean particularly the nominative and accusative in the singular, plural, and dual, should not date from the same time as the earliest formations of conjugation. The same process that leads to the formation of vak-ti, speak-he, would account for the formation of vak-s, speak-there, i.e., speaker. Necessity, which after all is the mother of all inventions, would much sooner have required the clear distinction of singular and plural, of nominative and accusative, than of the three persons, of the verbs. It is far more important to be able to distinguish the subject and the object in such sentences as "the son has killed the father," or "the father has killed the son," than to be able to indicate the person and tense of the verb. Of course we may say that in Chinese the two cases are distinguished without any outward signs, and by mere position; but we have no evidence that the law of position was preserved in the Aryan languages, after verbal inflection had once set in. Chinese dispenses with verbal inflection as well as with nominal, and an appeal to it would therefore prove either too much or too little.

At the end of the five periods which we have examined, but still before the Aryan separation, Curtius places the sixth, which he calls the Period of the Formation of Cases, and the seventh, the Period of Adverbs. Why I cannot bring myself to accept the late date here assigned to declension, Ihave tried to explain before. That adverbs existed before the great branches of Aryan speech became definitely separated has been fully proved by Professor Curtius. Ionly doubt whether the adverbial period can be separated chronologically from the case period. Ishould say, on the contrary, that some of the adverbs in Sanskrit and the other Aryan languages exhibit the most primitive and obsolete case-terminations, and that they existed probably long before the system of case-terminations assumed its completeness.

If we look back at the results at which we have arrived in examining the attempt of Professor Curtius to establish seven distinct chronological periods in the history of the Aryan speech, previous to its separation into Sanskrit, Greek, Latin, Slavonic, Teutonic, and Celtic, Ithink we shall find two principles clearly established:—

1. That it is impossible to distinguish more than three successive phases in the growth of the Aryan language. In the first phase or period the only materials were roots, not yet compounded, still less articulated grammatically, aform of language to us almost inconceivable, yet even at present preserved in the literature and conversation of millions of human beings, the Chinese. In that stage of language, "king rule man heap law instrument," would mean, the king rules men legally.

The second phase is characterized by the combination of roots, by which process one loses its independence and its accent, and is changed from a full and material into an empty or formal element. That phase comprehends the formation of compound roots, of certain nominal and verbal stems, and of the most necessary forms of declension and conjugation. What distinguishes this phase from the inflectional is the consciousness of the speaker, that one part of his word is the stem or the body, and all the rest its environment, afeeling analogous to that which we have when we speak of man-hood, man-ly, man-ful, man-kind, but which fails us when we speak of man and men, or if we speak of wo-man, instead of wif-man. The principle of combination preponderated when inflection was as yet unknown. But inflection itself was the result of combination, and unless it had continued long after inflection set in, the very life of language would have become extinct.

The third phase is the inflectional, when the base and the modificatory elements of words coalesce, lose their independence in the mind of the speaker, and simply produce the impression of modification taking place in the body of words, but without any intelligible reason. This is the feeling which we have throughout nearly the whole of our own language, and it is only by means of scientific reflection that we distinguish between the root, the base, the suffix, and the termination. To attempt more than this three-fold division seems to me impossible.

2. The second principle which I tried to establish was that the growth of language does not lend itself to a chronological division, in the strict sense of the word. Whatever forces are at work in the formation of languages, none of them ceases suddenly to make room for another, but they work on with a certain continuity from beginning to end, only on a larger or smaller scale. Inflection does not put a sudden end to combination, nor combination to juxtaposition. When even in so modern a language as English we can form by mere combination such words as man-like, and reduce them to manly, the power of combination cannot be said to be extinct, although it may no longer be sufficiently strong to produce new cases or new personal terminations. We may admit, in the development of the Aryan language, previous to its division, three successive strata of formation, ajuxtapositional, a combinatory, and an inflectional; but we shall have to confess that these strata are not regularly superimposed, but tilted, broken up, and convulsed. They are very prominent each for a time, but even after that time is over, they may be traced at different points, pervading the very latest formations of tertiary speech. The true motive power in the progress of all language is combination, and that power is not extinct even in our own time.

[Footnote 1: This Lecture has been translated by M. Louis Havet, and forms the first fasciculus of the Bibliothque de l'cole des Hautes tudes, publie sous les auspices du Ministre de l'Instruction Publique. Paris, 1869.]

[Footnote 2: See Benfey, Ueber die Aufgabe des Kratylos, Gttingen, 1868.]

[Footnote 3: Theokritos, xvii. 9.]

[Footnote 4: In my essay On the Relation of Bengali to the Aryan and Aboriginal Languages of India, published in 1848, Itried to explain these plural suffixes, such as dig, ga{n}a, jti, varga, dala. I had translated the last word by band, supposing from Wilson's Dictionary, and from the {S}abda-kalpa-druma that dala could be used in the sense of band or multitude. Idoubt, however, whether dala is ever used in Sanskrit in that sense, and I feel certain that it was not used in that sense with sufficient frequency to account for its adoption in Bengali. Dr. Friedrich Mller, in his useful abstracts of some of the grammars discovered by the Novara in her journey round the earth (1857-59), has likewise referred dal to the Sanskrit dala, but he renders what I had in English rendered by band, by the German word Band. This can only be an accident. Imeant band in the sense of a band of robbers, which in German would be Bande. He seems to have misunderstood me, and to have taken band for the German Band, which means a ribbon. Might dala in Bengali be the Dravidian ta{l}a or da{l}a, a host, acrowd, which Dr. Caldwell (p.197) mentions as a possible etymon of the pluralizing suffix in the Dravidian languages? Bengali certainly took the idea of forming its plurals by composition with words expressive of plurality from its Dravidian neighbor, and it is not impossible that in some cases it might have transferred the very word da{l}a, crowd. This da{l}a and ta{l}a appears in Tamil as kala and gala, and as Sanskrit k may in Sinhalese be represented by v (loka = lova), I thought that the plural termination used in Sinhalese after inanimate nouns might possibly be a corruption of the Tamil kala. Mr. Childers, however, in his able "Essay on the formation of the Plural of Neuter Nouns in Sinhalese" (J.R.A.S., 1874, p.40), thinks that the Sinhalese vala is a corruption of the Sanskrit vana, forest, an opinion which seems likewise to be held by Mr. D'Alwis (l.c. p.48). As a case in point, in support of mv own opinion, Mr. Childers mentioned to me the Sinhalese malvaru, Sanskrit ml-kra, a wreath-maker, agardener. In Persian both n and h are remnants of decayed plural terminations, not collective words added to the base.]

[Footnote 5: Stanislas Julien, Exercises Pratiques, p. 14.]

[Footnote 6: Endlicher, Chinesische Grammatik, 122. Wade, Progressive Course on the Parts of Speech, p.102. Adifferent division of words adopted by Chinese grammarians is that into dead and live words, ss-ts and sing-ts, the former comprising nouns, the latter verbs. The same classes are sometimes called tsing-ts and ho-ts, unmoved and moved words. This shows how purposeless it would be to try to find out whether language began with noun or verb. In the earliest phase of speech the same word was both noun and verb, according to the use that was made of it, and it is so still to a great extent in Chinese. See Endlicher, Chinesische Grammatik, 219.]

[Footnote 7: Agglutinative seems an unnecessarily uncouth word, and as implying a something which glues two words together, akind of Bindevocal, it is objectionable as a technical term. Combinatory is technically more correct, and less strange than agglutinative.]

[Footnote 8: Professor Pott, in his article entitled "Max Mller und die Kennzeichen der Sprachverwandtschaft," published in 1855, in the Journal of the German Oriental Society, vol. ix. p.412, says, in confutation of Bunsen's view of a real historical progress of language from the lowest to the highest stage: "So cautious an inquirer as W.von Humboldt declines expressly, in the last chapter of his work on the Diversity of the Structure of Human Language (p.414), any conclusions as to a real historical progress from one stage of language to another, or at least does not commit himself to any definite opinion. This is surely something very different from that gradual progress, and it would be a question whether, by admitting such an historical progress from stage to stage, we should not commit an absurdity hardly less palpable than by trying to raise infusoria into horses or still further into men. [What was an absurdity in 1855 does not seem to be so in 1875.] Mr. Bunsen, it is true, does not hesitate to call the monosyllabic idiom of the Chinese an inorganic formation. But how can we get from an inorganic to an organic language? In nature such a thing would be impossible. No stone becomes a plant, no plant a tree, by however wonderful a metamorphosis, except, in a different sense, by the process of nutrition, i.e., by regeneration. The former question, which Mr. Bunsen answers in the affirmative, is disposed of by him with the short dictum: 'The question whether a language can be supposed to begin with inflections, appears to us simply an absurdity;' but unfortunately he does not condescend, by a clear illustration, to make that absurdity palpable. Why, in inflectional languages, should the grammatical form always have added itself to the matter subsequently and ab extra? Why should it not partially from the beginning have been created with it and in it, as having a meaning with something else, but not having antecedently a meaning of its own?"]

[Footnote 9: Cf. D. G. Brinton, The Myths of the New World, p.6, note.]

[Footnote 10: Julien, Exercises Pratiques, p. 120. Endlicher, Chineseische Grammatik, 161. See, also, Nldeke, Orient und Occident, vol.i. p.759. Grammar of the Bornu Language (London, 1853), p.55: "In the Treaty the genitive is supplied by the relative pronoun agu, singularly corroborative of the Rev. R. Garnett's theory of the genitive case."]

[Footnote 11: "Time changes the meaning of words as it does their sound. Thus, many old words are retained in compounds, but have lost their original signification. E.g., 'keu, mouth, has been replaced in colloquial usage by 'tsui, but it is still employed extensively in compound terms and in derived senses. Thus, kwai' 'keu a rapid talker, .men 'keu, door, ,kwan 'keu, custom house. So also muh, the original word for eye, has given place to 'yen, tsing, or 'yen alone. It is, however, employed with other words in derived senses. E.g., muh hia, at present; muh luh, table of contents.

"The primitive word for head, 'sheu, has been replaced by .t'eu, but is retained with various words in combination. E.g., tseh 'sheu, robber chief."

Edkins, Grammar of the Chinese Colloquial Language, 2d edition, 1864, p.100.]

[Footnote 12: Grimm, Deutsche Grammatik, ii. 339.]

[Footnote 13: Cf. the German Liebhart, mignon, in Anshelm, 1, 335. Grimm, Deutsche Grammatik, iii. 707. Ifeel more doubtful now as to sweetard. Dr. Morris mentions it in his Historical Outlines of English Grammar, p.219; but Koch, when discussing the same derivations in his English Grammar, does not give the word. Mr. Skeat writes to me: "The form really used in Middle English is sweeting. Three examples are given in Stratmann. One of the best is in my edition of William of Palerne, where, however, it occurs not once only (asgiven by Stratmann), but four times, viz.: in lines 916, 1537, 2799, 3088. The lines are:—

'Nai, sertes, sweting, he seide that schal I neuer.' 916 '& seide aswithe sweting, welcome!' 1537 'Sertes, sweting, tht is soth. seide william thanne.' 2799 'treuli, sweting, that is soth seide william thane.' 3088

The date of this poem is about A.D. 1360. Shakespeare has both forms, viz.: sweeting and sweet-heart. Chaucer has swete herte, just as we should use sweet-heart."]

[Footnote 14: Diez, Grammatik, ii. 358. Grimm, Deutsche Grammatik, i. p.340, 706.]

[Footnote 15: See Sanskrit Grammar, 497. I doubt whether in Greek angell is a denominative verb and stands for angel(o)j (Curtius, Chronologie, p.58). Ishould prefer to explain it as ana-gar-i, to proclaim, as a verb of the fourth class.]

[Footnote 16: Lex Repetund. "ceivis romanus ex hac lege fiet, nepotesque — ceiveis romanei justei sunto." Cf. Egger, Lat, Serm. Vetust. Reliq., p.245. Meunier, in Mmoires de la Societ de Linguistique de Paris, vol.i. p.34.]

[Footnote 17: Still used as long by Plautus; of. Neue, Formenlehre, ii. p.340.]

[Footnote 18: In old Latin the termination of the first person singular was em. Thus Quintilian, i. 7, 23, says: "Quid? non Cato Censorius dicam et faciam, dicem et faciem scripsit, eundemque in ceteris, qu similiter cadunt, modum tenuit? quod et ex veteribus ejus libris manifestum est, et a Messala in libro de s. littera positum." Neue, Formenlehre, ii. p.348. The introduction of feram, originally a subjunctive, to express the future in the first person, reminds us of the distinction in English between I shall and thou wilt, though the analogy fails in the first person plural. In Homer the use of the subjunctive for the future is well known. See Curtius, Chronologie, p.50.]

[Footnote 19: Historically the i in tuleritis should be long in the subjunctive of the perfect, short in the future.]

[Footnote 20: Bleek, On the Concord, p. lxvi.]

[Footnote 21: In d-s, for dsi, the i or y is lost in Greek as usual. In other verbs s and y are both lost. Hence tenesi becomes tenes, and ten the so-called Attic future. Bopp, Vergleich-Grammatik, first ed., p.903. In Latin we have traces of a similar future in forms like fac-so, cap-so, etc. See Neue, Formenlehre, ii. p.421. The Epic dialect sometimes doubles the s when the vowel is short, aidessomai. But this can hardly be considered a relic of the original si, because the same reduplication takes places sometimes in the Aorist, egelassa.]

[Footnote 22: See Bopp, Vergleichende Grammatik, 897, 898. These verbal adjectives should be carefully distinguished from nominal adjectives, such as Sanskrit div-y-s, divinus, originally div-i-a-s, i.e., divi-bhavas, being in heaven; oikeios, domesticus, originally oikei-o-s, being in the house. These are adjectives formed, it would seem, from old locatives, just as in Bask we can form from etche, house, etche-tic, of the house, and etche-tic-acoa, he who is of the house; or from seme, son, semea-ren, of the son, and semea-ren-a, he who is of the son. See W.J. van Eys, Essai de Grammaire de la Langue Basque, 1867, p.16.]

[Footnote 23: Bopp, Vergleichende Grammatik, 888-898.]

[Footnote 24: Bacon, Novum Organum, i. 55.]

[Footnote 25: Until a rational account of these changes, comprehended under the name of Lautverschiebung, is given, we must continue to look upon them, not as the result of phonetic decay, but of dialectic growth. Iam glad to find that this is more and more admitted by those who think for themselves, instead of simply repeating the opinions of others. Grimm's Law stands no longer alone, as peculiar to the Teutonic languages, but analogous changes have been pointed out in the South-African, the Chinese, the Polynesian dialects, showing that these changes are everywhere collateral, not successive. Iagree with Professor Curtius and other scholars that the impulse to what we call Lautverschiebung was given by the third modification in each series of consonants, by the gh, dh, bh in Sanskrit, the ch, th, ph, in Greek. Idiffer from him in considering the changes of Lautverschiebung as the result of dialectic variety, while he sees their motive power in phonetic corruption. But whether we take the one view or the other, Ido not see that Dr. Scherer has removed any of our difficulties. See Curtius, Grundzge, 4th ed., p.426, note. Dr. Scherer, in his thoughtful work, Zur Geschichte der Deutschen Sprache, has very nearly, though not quite, apprehended the meaning of my explanation as to the effects of dialectic change contrasted with those of phonetic decay. If it is allowable to use a more homely illustration, one might say with perfect truth, that each dialect chooses its own phonetic garment, as people choose the coats and trousers which best fit them. The simile, like all similes, is imperfect, yet it is far more exact than if we compare the ravages of phonetic decay, as is frequently done, to the wear and tear of these phonetic suits.]

[Footnote 26: Edkins, Grammar, p. 84.]

[Footnote 27: Having stated this on the authority of Mr. Edkins, one of our best living Chinese scholars, it is but fair that I should give the opinion of another Chinese scholar, the late Stanislas Julien, whose competence to give an opinion on this subject Mr. Edkins would probably be the first to acknowledge. All that we really want is the truth, not a momentary triumph of our own opinions. M.Julien wrote to me in July, 1868:—

"Je ne suis pas du tout de l'avis d'Edkins qui dit qu'un grand nombre de mots mongols sont chinois; c'est faux, archifaux.

Sain est mandchou et veut dire bon, en chinois chen. begen, low: en chinois hia. itchi, droit; en chinois yeou. sologa, left, gauche; en chinois tso. c'hihe, straight; en chinois tchi (rectus). gadan, outside; en chinois wa. logon, green; en chinois tsing. c'hohon, few; en chinois chao. hungun, light (not heavy); en chinois king.

"Je voudrais bien savoir comment M. Edkins prouve que les mots qu'il cite sont chinois.

"Foucaux a chou galement en voulant prouver, autrefois, que 200 mots thibtains qu'il avait choisis ressemblaent aux mots chinois correspondants."

M. Stanislas Julien wrote again to me on the 21st of July:—

"J'ai peur que vous ne soyez fch du jugemont sevre que j'ai port sur les identifications faites par Edkins du mongol avec le chinois. J'ai d'abord pris dans votre savant article les mots mongols qu'il cite et je vous ai montr qu'ils ne ressemblent pas le moins du monde au chinois.

"Je vais vous en citer d'autres tirs du Dictionnaire de Khienlung chinois mandchou-mongol.

Mongol Chinois tegri, ciel thien. naran, soleil ji. naram barimoni, } ji-chi. clipse de soleil } saran, lune youe. oudoun, toile sing. egoul, nuages, yun. ayounga, le tonnerre lou. tchagilgan, clair tien. borogan, la pluie yu. sigouderi, la rose lou. kirago, la gele choang. lapsa, la neige sioue. salgin, le vent fong. ousoun, l'eau chou. gal, le feu ho. siroi, la terre thou. aisin, l'or altan.

"Je vous donnerai, si vous le dsirez, 1000 mots mongols avec leurs synonymes chinois, et je dfie M.Edkins de trouver dans les 1000 mots mongols un seul qui ressemble au mot chinois synonyme.

"Comme j'ai fait assez de thibtain, je puis vous fournir aussi une multitude de mots thibtains avec leurs correspondants en chinois, et je dfierai galement M.Edkins de trouver un seul mot thibtain dans mille qui ressemble au mot chinois qui a le mme sens."

My old friend, M. Stanislas Julien, wrote to me once more on this subject, the 6th of August, 1868:—

"Depuis une quinzaine d'annes, j'ai l'avantage d'entretenir les meilleures relations avec M.Edkins. J'ai lu, anciennement dans un journal que publie M.Lon de Rosny (actuellement professeur titulaire de la langue Japanaise) le travail o M.Edkins a tch de rapprocher et d'identifier, par les sons, des mots mongols et chinois ayant la mme signification. Son systme m'a paru mal fond. Quelques mots chinois peuvent tre entrs dans la langue mongole par suite du contact des deux peuples, comme cela est arriv pour le mandchou, dont beaucoup de mots sont entrs dans la langue mongole en en prenant les terminaisons; mais il ne faudrait pas se servir de ces exemples pour montrer l'identit ou les ressemblances des deux langues.

"Quand les mandchous ont voulu traduire les livres chinois, ils ont rencontr un grand nombre de mots dont les synonymes n'existaient pas dans leur langue. Ils se sont alors empar des mots chinois en leur donnant des terminaisons mandchoues, mais cette quasi-ressemblance de certains mots mandchous ne prouve point le moins du monde l'identit des deux langues. Par exemple, un prfet se dit en chinois tchi-fou, et un sous-prfet tchi-hien; les mandchous qui ne possdaient point ces fonctionaires se sont contents de transcire les sons chinois dchhifou, dchhikhiyan.

"Le tafetas se dit en chinois tcheou-tse; les mandchous, n'ayant point de mots pour dire tafetas, ont transcrit les sons chinois par tchous. Le bambou se dit tchou-tze; ils ont crit l'arbre (moo) tchous. Un titre de noblesse crit sur du papier dor s'appelle tsĕ; les mandchous crivent tche. Je pourrais vous citer un nombre considrable de mots du mme genre, qui ne prouvent pas du tout l'identit du mandchou et du chinois.

"L'ambre s'appelle hou-pe; les mandchous crivent khba. La barbe s'appelle hou-tse, ils crivent khs.

"Voici de quelle manire les mandchous ont fait certains verbes. Une balance s'appelle en chinois thien ping, ils crivent p'ing-s; puis pour dire peser avec une balance, ils ont fait le verbe p'ingselembi; lembi est une terminaison commune beaucoup de verbes.

"Pour dire faire peser, ordonner de peser avec une balance, ils crivent p'ingseleboumbi; boumbi est la forme factive ou causative; cette terminaison sert aussi pour le passif; de sorte que ce verbe peut signifier aussi tre pes avec une balance.

"Je pourrais citer aussi des mots mandchous auxquels on a donn la terminaison mongole, et vice vers."

These remarks, made by one who, during his lifetime, was recognised by friend and foe as the first Chinese scholar in Europe, ought to have their proper weight. They ought certainly to make us cautious before persuading ourselves that the connection between the northern and southern branches of the Turanian languages has been found in Chinese. On the other hand I am quite aware that all that M.Stanislas Julien says against Mr. Edkins may be true, and that nevertheless Chinese may have been the central language from which Mongolian in the north and Tibetan in the south branched off. Alanguage, such as Chinese, with a small number of sounds and an immense number of meanings, can easily give birth to dialects which, in their later development, might branch off in totally different directions. Even with languages so closely connected as Sanskrit and Latin, it would be easy to make out a list of a thousand words in Latin which could not be matched in Sanskrit. The question, therefore, is not decided. What is wanted are researches carried on by competent scholars, in an unprejudiced and at the same time thoroughly scientific spirit.]

[Footnote 28: If Mr. Chalmers' comparison of the Chinese and Bohemian names for daughter is so unpardonable, what shall we say of Bopp's comparison of the Bengali and Sanskrit names for sister? Sister in Bengali is bohin, the Hindi bahin and bhn, the Prakrit bahi{n}, the Sanskrit bhagin. Bopp, in the most elaborate way, derives bohin from the Sanskrit svas{ri}, sister. Bopp, Vergleichende Grammatik, Vorrede zur vierten Abtheilung, p.x.]

[Footnote 29: Curtius, Verbum, p. 72.]

[Footnote 30: Pott, E. F., 1871, p. 21.]

[Footnote 31: Dr. Callaway, in his Remarks on the Zulu Language (1870), p.2, says: "The Zulu Language contains upwards of 20,000 words in bon fide use among the people. Those curious appellations for different colored cattle, or for different maize cobs, to express certain minute peculiarities of color or arrangement of color, which it is difficult for us to grasp, are not synonymous, but instances in which a new noun or name is used instead of adding adjectives to one name to express the various conditions of an object. Neither are these various verbs used to express varieties of the same action, synonyms, such as ukupata, to carry in the hand, ukwetshata, to carry on the shoulder, ukubeleta, to carry on the back."]

[Footnote 32: Bruppacher, Lantlere der Oskischen Sprache, p.48. Bchler, Grundriss der Lateinischen Declination, p.1.]

[Footnote 33: "Die Entstehung der Casus ist noch das allerdunkelste im weiten Bereich des indogermanischen Formensystems." Curtius, Chronologie, p.71.]

[Footnote 34: Corssen, ii. 888.]

[Footnote 35: Cf. Clemm, Die neusten Forschungen auf dem Gebiet der Griechischen Composita, p.9.]




"Count not your chickens before they be hatched," is a well-known proverb in English, and most people, if asked what was its origin, would probably appeal to La Fontaine's delightful fable, La Laitire et le Pot au Lait.[1] We all know Perrette, lightly stepping along from her village to the town, carrying the milk-pail on her head, and in her day-dreams selling her milk for a good sum, then buying a hundred eggs, then selling the chickens, then buying a pig, fattening it, selling it again, and buying a cow with a calf. The calf frolics about, and kicks up his legs—so does Perrette, and, alas! the pail falls down, the milk is spilt, her riches gone, and she only hopes when she comes home that she may escape a flogging from her husband.

Did La Fontaine invent this fable? or did he merely follow the example of Sokrates, who, as we know from the Phdon,[2] occupied himself in prison, during the last days of his life, with turning into verse some of the fables, or, as he calls them, the myths of sop.

La Fontaine published the first six books of his fables in 1668,[3] and it is well known that the subjects of most of these early fables were taken from sop, Phdrus, Horace, and other classical fabulists, if we may adopt this word "fabuliste," which La Fontaine was the first to introduce into French.

In 1678 a second edition of these six books was published, enriched by five books of new fables, and in 1694 a new edition appeared, containing one additional book, thus completing the collection of his charming poems.

The fable of Perrette stands in the seventh book, and was published, therefore, for the first time in the edition of 1678. In the preface to that edition La Fontaine says: "It is not necessary that I should say whence I have taken the subjects of these new fables. Ishall only say, from a sense of gratitude, that I owe the largest portion of them to Pilpay the Indian sage."

If, then, La Fontaine tells us himself that he borrowed the subjects of most of his new fables from Pilpay, the Indian sage, we have clearly a right to look to India in order to see whether, in the ancient literature of that country, any traces can be discovered of Perrette with the milk-pail.

Sanskrit literature is very rich in fables and stories; no other literature can vie with it in that respect; nay, it is extremely likely that fables, in particular animal fables, had their principal source in India. In the sacred literature of the Buddhists, fables held a most prominent place. The Buddhist preachers, addressing themselves chiefly to the people, to the untaught, the uncared for, the outcast, spoke to them, as we still speak to children, in fables, in proverbs and parables. Many of these fables and parables must have existed before the rise of the Buddhist religion; others, no doubt, were added on the spur of the moment, just as Sokrates would invent a myth or fable whenever that form of argument seemed to him most likely to impress and convince his hearers. But Buddhism gave a new and permanent sanction to this whole branch of moral mythology, and in the sacred canon, as it was settled in the third century before Christ, many a fable received, and holds to the present day, its recognized place. After the fall of Buddhism in India, and even during its decline, the Brahmans claimed the inheritance of their enemies, and used their popular fables for educational purposes. The best known of these collections of fables in Sanskrit is the Pacatantra, literally the Pentateuch, or Pentamerone. From it and from other sources another collection was made, well known to all Sanskrit scholars by the name of Hitopadesa, i.e., Salutary Advice. Both these books have been published in England and Germany, and there are translations of them in English, German, French, and other languages.[4]

The first question which we have to answer refers to the date of these collections, and dates in the history of Sanskrit literature are always difficult points. Fortunately, as we shall see, we can in this case fix the date of the Pacatantra at least, by means of a translation into ancient Persian, which was made about 550 years after Christ, though even then we can only prove that a collection somewhat like the Pakatantra must have existed at that time; but we cannot refer the book, in exactly that form in which we now possess it, to that distant period.

If we look for La Fontaine's fable in the Sanskrit stories of the Pacatantra, we do not find, indeed, the milkmaid counting her chickens before they are hatched, but we meet with the following story:—

"There lived in a certain place a Brhman, whose name was Svabhvak{ri}pa{n}a, which means 'aborn miser.' He had collected a quantity of rice by begging (this reminds us somewhat of the Buddhist mendicants), and after having dined off it, he filled a pot with what was left over. He hung the pot on a peg on the wall, placed his couch beneath, and looking intently at it all the night, he thought, 'Ah, that pot is indeed brimful of rice. Now, if there should be a famine, Ishould certainly make a hundred rupees by it. With this I shall buy a couple of goats. They will have young ones every six months, and thus I shall have a whole herd of goats. Then, with the goats, Ishall buy cows. As soon as they have calved, Ishall sell the calves. Then, with the cows, Ishall buy buffaloes; with the buffaloes, mares. When the mares have foaled, Ishall have plenty of horses; and when I sell them, plenty of gold. With that gold I shall get a house with four wings. And then a Brhman will come to my house, and will give me his beautiful daughter, with a large dowry. She will have a son, and I shall call him Soma{s}arman. When he is old enough to be danced on his father's knee, Ishall sit with a book at the back of the stable, and while I am reading the boy will see me, jump from his mother's lap, and run towards me to be danced on my knee. He will come too near the horse's hoof, and, full of anger, Ishall call to my wife, "Take the baby; take him!" But she, distracted by some domestic work does not hear me. Then I get up, and give her such a kick with my foot.' While he thought this, he gave a kick with his foot, and broke the pot. All the rice fell over him, and made him quite white. Therefore, Isay, 'He who makes foolish plans for the future will be white all over, like the father of Soma{s}arman.'"[5]

I shall at once proceed to read you the same story, though slightly modified, from the Hitopade{s}a.[6] The Hitopade{s}a professes to be taken from the Pacatantra and some other books; and in this case it would seem as if some other authority had been followed. You will see, at all events, how much freedom there was in telling the old story of the man who built castles in the air.

"In the town of Devko{t}{t}a there lived a Brhman of the name of Deva{s}arman. At the feast of the great equinox he received a plate full of rice. He took it, went into a potter's shop, which was full of crockery, and, overcome by the heat, he lay down in a corner and began to doze. In order to protect his plate of rice, he kept a stick in his hand, and began to think, 'Now, if I sell this plate of rice, Ishall receive ten cowries (kapardaka). Ishall then, on the spot, buy pots and plates, and after having increased my capital again and again, Ishall buy and sell betel nuts and dresses till I become enormously rich. Then I shall marry four wives, and the youngest and prettiest of the four I shall make a great pet of. Then the other wives will be so angry, and begin to quarrel. But I shall be in a great rage, and take a stick, and give them a good flogging.' .... While he said this, he flung his stick away; the plate of rice was smashed to pieces, and many of the pots in the shop were broken. The potter, hearing the noise, ran into the shop, and when he saw his pots broken, he gave the Brhman a good scolding, and drove him out of his shop. Therefore I say, 'He who rejoices over plans for the future will come to grief, like the Brhman who broke the pots.'"

In spite of the change of a Brahman into a milkmaid, no one, Isuppose, will doubt that we have here in the stories of the Pacatantra and Hitopade{s}a the first germs of La Fontaine's fable.[7] But how did that fable travel all the way from India to France? How did it doff its Sanskrit garment and don the light dress of modern French? How was the stupid Brahman born again as the brisk milkmaid, "cotillon simple et souliers plats?"

It seems a startling case of longevity that while languages have changed, while works of art have perished, while empires have risen and vanished again, this simple children's story should have lived on, and maintained its place of honor and its undisputed sway in every school-room of the East and every nursery of the West. And yet it is a case of longevity so well attested that even the most skeptical would hardly venture to question it. We have the passport of these stories vised at every place through which they have passed, and, as far as I can judge, parfaitement en rgle. The story of the migration of these Indian fables from East to West is indeed wonderful; more wonderful and more instructive than many of these fables themselves. Will it be believed that we, in this Christian country and in the nineteenth century, teach our children the first, the most important lessons of worldly wisdom, nay, of a more than worldly wisdom, from books borrowed from Buddhists and Brahmans, from heretics and idolaters, and that wise words, spoken a thousand, nay, two thousand years ago, in a lonely village of India, like precious seed scattered broadcast all over the world, still bear fruit a hundred and a thousand-fold in that soil which is the most precious before God and man, the soul of a child? No lawgiver, no philosopher, has made his influence felt so widely, so deeply, and so permanently as the author of these children's fables. But who was he? We do not know. His name, like the name of many a benefactor of the human race, is forgotten. We only know he was an Indian—a nigger, as some people would call him—and that he lived at least two thousand years ago.

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