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A Philological Essay Concerning the Pygmies of the Ancients by Edward Tyson

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A PHILOLOGICAL ESSAY CONCERNING THE PYGMIES OF THE ANCIENTS

By

EDWARD TYSON

Now Edited, with an Introduction by Bertram C. A. Windle

TO MY DEAR MOTHER

PREFATORY NOTE

It is only necessary for me to state here, what I have mentioned in the
Introduction, that my account of the habits of the Pigmy races of legend
and myth makes no pretence of being in any sense a complete or exhaustive
account of the literature of this subject. I have contented myself with
bringing forward such tales as seemed of value for the purpose of
establishing the points upon which I desire to lay emphasis.

I have elsewhere expressed my obligations to M. De Quatrefage's book on
Pigmies, obligations which will be at once recognised by those familiar
with that monograph. To his observations I have endeavoured to add such
other published facts as I have been able to gather in relation to these
peoples.

I have to thank Professors Sir William Turner, Haddon, Schlegel, Brinton,
and Topinard for their kindness in supplying me with information in
response to my inquiries on several points.

Finally, I have to acknowledge my indebtedness to Professor Alexander
Macalister, President of the Anthropological Institute, and to Mr. E.
Sidney Hartland, for their kindness in reading through, the former the
first two sections, and the latter the last two sections of the
Introduction, and for the valuable suggestions which both have made. These
gentlemen have laid me under obligations which I can acknowledge, but
cannot repay.

BERTRAM C. A. WINDLE.

MASON COLLEGE,

BIRMINGHAM, 1894.

INTRODUCTION

I.

Edward Tyson, the author of the Essay with which this book is concerned,
was, on the authority of Monk's Roll of the Royal College of Physicians,
born, according to some accounts, at Bristol, according to others, at
Clevedon, co. Somerset, but was descended from a family which had long
settled in Cumberland. He was educated at Magdalene Hall, Oxford, as a
member of which he proceeded Bachelor of Arts on the 8th of February 1670,
and Master of Arts on the 4th of November 1673. His degree of Doctor of
Medicine he took at Cambridge in 1678 as a member of Corpus Christi
College. Dr. Tyson was admitted a candidate of the College of Physicians
on the 30th of September 1680, and a Fellow in April 1683. He was Censor
of the College in 1694, and held the appointments of Physician to the
Hospitals of Bridewell and Bethlem, and of Anatomical Reader at Surgeons'
Hall. He was a Fellow of the Royal Society, and contributed several papers
to the "Philosophical Transactions." Besides a number of anatomical works,
he published in 1699 "A Philosophical Essay concerning the Rhymes of the
Ancients," and in the same year the work by which his name is still known,
in which the Philological Essay which is here reprinted finds a place.
Tyson died on the 1st of August 1708, in the fifty-eighth year of his age,
and is buried at St. Dionis Backchurch. He was the original of the Carus
not very flatteringly described in Garth's "Dispensary."

The title-page of the work above alluded to runs as follows:--

_Orang-Outang, sive Homo Sylvestris_:

OR, THE ANATOMY OF A PYGMIE

Compared with that of a _Monkey_, an _Ape_, and a _Man_.

To which is added, A PHILOLOGICAL ESSAY Concerning the _Pygmies_, the
_Cynocephali_, the _Satyrs_, and _Sphinges_ of the ANCIENTS.

Wherein it will appear that they are all either _APES_ or _MONKEYS_, and
not _MEN_, as formerly pretended.

By _EDWARD TYSON_ M.D.

Fellow of the Colledge of Physicians, and the Royal Society: Physician to
the Hospital of _Bethlem_, and Reader of Anatomy at _Chirurgeons-Hall_.

_LONDON_:

Printed for _Thomas Bennet_ at the _Half-Moon in St. Paul's_ Church-yard;
and _Daniel Brown_ at the _Black Swan_ and _Bible_ without _Temple-Bar_
and are to be had of Mr. _Hunt_ at the _Repository_ in _Gresham-Colledge_.
M DC XCIX.

It bears the authority of the Royal Society:--

17 deg. _Die Maij_, 1699.

Imprimatur Liber cui Titulus, _Orang-Outang, sive Homo Sylvestris,_ &c.
Authore _Edvardo Tyson_, M.D. R.S.S.

JOHN HOSKINS, _V.P.R.S_.

The Pygmy described in this work was, as a matter of fact, a chimpanzee,
and its skeleton is at this present moment in the Natural History Museum
at South Kensington. Tyson's granddaughter married a Dr. Allardyce, who
was a physician of good standing in Cheltenham. The "Pygmie" formed a
somewhat remarkable item of her dowry. Her husband presented it to the
Cheltenham Museum, where it was fortunately carefully preserved until,
quite recently, it was transferred to its present position.

At the conclusion of the purely scientific part of the work the author
added four Philological Essays, as will have appeared from his title-page.
The first of these is both the longest and the most interesting, and has
alone been selected for republication in this volume.

This is not the place to deal with the scientific merit of the main body
of Tyson's work, but it may at least be said that it was the first attempt
which had been made to deal with the anatomy of any of the anthropoid
apes, and that its execution shows very conspicuous ability on the part of
its author.

Tyson, however, was not satisfied with the honour of being the author of
an important morphological work; he desired to round off his subject by
considering its bearing upon the, to him, wild and fabulous tales
concerning pigmy races. The various allusions to these races met with in
the pages of the older writers, and discussed in his, were to him what
fairy tales are to us. Like modern folk-lorists, he wished to explain,
even to euhemerise them, and bring them into line with the science of his
day. Hence the "Philological Essay" with which this book is concerned.
There are no pigmy races, he says; "the most diligent enquiries of late
into all the parts of the inhabited world could never discover any such
puny diminutive race of mankind." But there are tales about them, "fables
and wonderful and merry relations, that are transmitted down to us
concerning them," which surely require explanation. That explanation he
found in his theory that all the accounts of pigmy tribes were based upon
the mistakes of travellers who had taken apes for men. Nor was he without
followers in his opinion; amongst whom here need only be mentioned Buffon,
who in his _Histoire des Oiseaux_ explains the Homeric tale much as Tyson
had done. The discoveries, however, of this century have, as all know,
re-established in their essential details the accounts of the older
writers, and in doing so have demolished the theories of Tyson and Buffon.
We now know, not merely that there are pigmy races in existence, but that
the area which they occupy is an extensive one, and in the remote past has
without doubt been more extensive still. Moreover, certain of these races
have been, at least tentatively, identified with the pigmy tribes of
Pliny, Herodotus, Aristotle, and other writers. It will be well, before
considering this question, and before entering into any consideration of
the legends and myths which may possibly be associated with dwarf races,
to sketch briefly their distribution throughout the continents of the
globe. It is necessary to keep clearly in view the upper limit which can
justly be assigned to dwarfishness, and with this object it may be
advisable to commence with a statement as to the average heights reached
by various representative peoples. According to Topinard, the races of the
world may be classified, in respect to their stature, in the following
manner:--

Tall 5 ft. 8 in. and upwards.
Above the average 5 ft. 6 in. to 5 ft. 8 in.
Below the average 5 ft. 4 in. to 5 ft. 6 in.
Short Below 5 ft. 4 in.

Thus amongst ordinary peoples there is no very striking difference of
height, so far as the average is concerned. It would, however, be a great
mistake to suppose that all races reaching a lower average height than
five feet four inches are, in any accurate sense of the word, to be looked
upon as pigmies. We have to descend to a considerably lower figure before
that appellation can be correctly employed. The stature must fall
considerably below five feet before we can speak of the race as one of
dwarfs or pigmies. Anthropometrical authorities have not as yet agreed
upon any upward limit for such a class, but for our present purposes it
may be convenient to say that any race in which the average male stature
does not exceed four feet nine inches--that is, the average height of a
boy of about twelve years of age--may fairly be described as pigmy. It is
most important to bear this matter of inches in mind in connection with
points which will have to be considered in a later section.

Pigmy races still exist in considerable numbers in Asia and the adjacent
islands, and as it was in that continent that, so far as our present
knowledge goes, they had in former days their greatest extension, and, if
De Quatrefages be correct, their place of origin, it will be well to deal
first with the tribes of that quarter of the globe. "The Negrito" (_i.e._,
pigmy black) "type," says the authority whom I have just quoted, and to
whom I shall have to be still further indebted,[A] "was first placed in
South Asia, which it without doubt occupied alone during an indeterminate
period. It is thence that its diverse representatives have radiated, and,
some going east, some west, have given rise to the black populations of
Melanesia and Africa. In particular, India and Indo-China first belonged
to the blacks. Invasions and infiltrations of different yellow or white
races have split up these Negrito populations, which formerly occupied a
continuous area, and mixing with them, have profoundly altered them. The
present condition of things is the final result of strifes and mixtures,
the most ancient of which may be referred back to prehistoric times." The
invasions above mentioned having in the past driven many of the races from
the mainland to the islands, and those which remained on the continent
having undergone greater modification by crossing with taller and alien
races, we may expect to find the purest Negritos amongst the tribes
inhabiting the various archipelagoes situated south and east of the
mainland. Amongst these, the Mincopies of the Andaman Islands offer a
convenient starting-point. The knowledge which we possess of these little
blacks is extensive, thanks to the labours in particular of Mr. Man[B] and
Dr. Dobson,[C] which may be found in the Journal of the Anthropological
Institute, and summarised in De Quatrefages' work. The average stature of
the males of this race is four feet six inches, the height of a boy of ten
years of age. Like children, the head is relatively large in comparison
with the stature, since it is contained seven times therein, instead of
seven and a half times, as is the rule amongst most average-sized peoples.
Whilst speaking of the head, it may be well to mention that these
Negritos, and in greater or less measure other Negritos and Negrillos
(_i.e._, pigmy blacks, Asiatic or African), differ in this part of the
body in a most important respect from the ordinary African negro. Like
him, they are black, often intensely so: like him, too, they have woolly
hair arranged in tufts, but, unlike him, they have round (brachycephalic)
heads instead of long (dolichocephalic); and the purer the race, the more
marked is this distinction. The Mincopie has a singularly short life; for
though he attains puberty at much the same age as ourselves, the
twenty-second year brings him to middle life, and the fiftieth, if
reached, is a period of extreme senility. Pure in race, ancient in
history, and carefully studied, this race deserves some further attention
here than can be extended to others with which I have to deal. The moral
side of the Mincopies seems to be highly developed; the modesty of the
young girls is most strict; monogamy is the rule, and--

"Their list of forbidden degrees
An extensive morality shows,"

since even the marriage of cousins-german is considered highly immoral.
"Men and women," says Man, "are models of constancy." They believe in a
Supreme Deity, respecting whom they say, that "although He resembles fire,
He is invisible; that He was never born, and is immortal; that He created
the world and all animate and inanimate objects, save only the powers of
evil. During the day He knows everything, even the thoughts of the mind;
He is angry when certain sins are committed, and full of pity for the
unfortunate and miserable, whom He sometimes condescends to assist. He
judges souls after death, and pronounces on each a sentence which sends
them to paradise or condemns them to a kind of purgatory. The hope of
escaping the torments of this latter place influences their conduct.
Puluga, this Deity, inhabits a house of stone; when it rains, He descends
upon the earth in search of food; during the dry weather He is asleep."
Besides this Deity, they believe in numerous evil spirits, the chief of
whom is the Demon of the Woods. These spirits have created themselves, and
have existed _ab immemorabili_. The sun, which is a female, and the moon,
her husband, are secondary deities.

[Footnote A: The quotations from this author are taken from his work _Les
Pygmees_. Paris, J.B. Bailliere et Fils, 1887.]

[Footnote B: _Jour. Anthrop. Inst_., vii.]

[Footnote C: _Ibid_., iv.]

South of the Andaman Islands are the Nicobars, the aborigines of which,
the Shom Pen,[A] now inhabit the mountains, where, like so many of their
brethren, they have been driven by the Malays. They are of small, but not
pigmy stature (five feet two inches), a fact which may be due to crossing.

[Footnote A: Man, _Jour. Anthrop. Inst._, xviii. p. 354.]

Following the Negritos east amongst the islands, we find in Luzon the
Aetas or Inagtas, a group of which is known in Mindanao as Manamouas. The
Aetas live side by side with the Tagals, who are of Malay origin. They
were called Negritos del Monte by the Spaniards who first colonised these
islands. Their average stature, according to Wallace, ranges from four
feet six inches to four feet eight inches. In New Guinea, the Karons, a
similar race, occupy a chain of mountains parallel to the north coast of
the great north-western peninsula. At Port Moresby, in the same island,
the Koiari appear to represent the most south-easterly group; but my
friend Professor Haddon, who has investigated this district, tells me that
he finds traces of a former existence of Negritos at Torres Straits and in
North Queensland, as shown by the shape of the skulls of the inhabitants
of these regions.

The Malay Peninsula contains in Perak hill tribes called "savages" by the
Sakays. These tribes have not been seen by Europeans, but are stated to be
pigmy in stature, troglodytic, and still in the Stone Age. Farther south
are the Semangs of Kedah, with an average stature of four feet ten inches,
and the Jakuns of Singapore, rising to five feet. The Annamites admit that
they are not autochthonous, a distinction which they confer upon the Mois,
of whom little is known, but whose existence and pigmy Negrito
characteristics are considered by De Quatrefages as established.

China no longer, so far as we know, contains any representatives of this
type, but Professor Lacouperie[A] has recently shown that they formerly
existed in that part of Asia. According to the annals of the Bamboo Books,
"In the twenty-ninth year of the Emperor Yao, in spring, the chief of the
Tsiao-Yao, or dark pigmies, came to court and offered as tribute feathers
from the Mot." The Professor continues, "As shown by this entry, we begin
with the semi-historic times as recorded in the 'Annals of the Bamboo
Books,' and the date about 2048 B.C. The so-called feathers were simply
some sort of marine plant or seaweed with which the immigrant Chinese,
still an inland people, were yet unacquainted. The Mot water or river,
says the Shan-hai-king, or canonical book of hills and seas, was situated
in the south-east of the Tai-shan in Shan-tung. This gives a clue to the
localisation of the pigmies, and this localisation agrees with the
positive knowledge we possess of the small area which the Chinese dominion
covered at this time. Thus the Negritos were part of the native population
of China when, in the twenty-third century B.C., the civilised Bak tribes
came into the land." In Japan we have also evidence of their existence.
This country, now inhabited by the Niphonians, or Japanese, as we have
come to call them, was previously the home of the Ainu, a white, hairy
under-sized race, possibly, even probably, emigrants from Europe, and now
gradually dying out in Yezo and the Kurile Islands. Prior to the Ainu was
a Negrito race, whose connection with the former is a matter of much
dispute, whose remains in the shape of pit-dwellings, stone arrow-heads,
pottery, and other implements still exist, and will be found fully
described by Mr. Savage Landor in a recent most interesting work.[B] In
the Shan-hai-king, as Professor Schlegel[C] points out, their country is
spoken of as the Siao-jin-Kouo, or land of little men, in distinction, be
it noted, to the Peh-min-Kouo, or land of white people, identified by him
with the Ainu. These little men are spoken of by the Ainu as
Koro-puk-guru, _i.e._, according to Milne, men occupying excavations, or
pit-dwellers. According to Chamberlain, the name means dwellers under
burdocks, and is associated with the following legend. Before the time of
the Ainu, Yezo was inhabited by a race of dwarfs, said by some to be two
to three feet, by others only one inch in height. When an enemy
approached, they hid themselves under the great leaves of the burdock
(_koro_), for which reason they are called Koro-puk-guru, i.e., the men
under the burdocks. When they were exterminated by the wooden clubs of the
Ainu, they raised their eyes to heaven, and, weeping, cried aloud to the
gods, "Why were we made so small?" It should be said that Professor
Schlegel and Mr. Savage Landor both seem to prefer the former etymology.

[Footnote A: Babylonian and Oriental Record, vol. v.]

[Footnote B: Alone with the Hairy Ainu.]

[Footnote C: _Problemes Geographiques. Les Peuples Etrangers chez les
Historiens Chinois_. Extrait du T'oung-pao, vol. _iv_. No. 4. Leide, E.J.
Brill.]

Passing to the north-west of the Andamans, we find in India a problem of
considerable difficulty. That there were at one period numerous Negrito
tribes inhabiting that part of Asia is indubitable; that some of them
persist to this day in a state of approximate purity is no less true, but
the influence of crossing has here been most potent. Races of lighter hue
and taller stature have invaded the territory of the Negritos, to a
certain extent intermarried with them, and thus have originated the
various Dravidian tribes. These tribes, therefore, afford us a valuable
clue as to the position occupied in former days by their ancestors, the
Negritos.

In some of the early Indian legends, De Quatrefages thinks that he finds
traces of these prehistoric connections between the indigenous Negrito
tribes and their invaders. The account of the services rendered to Rama by
Hanuman and his monkey-people may, he thinks, easily be explained by
supposing the latter to be a Negrito tribe. Another tale points to unions
of a closer nature between the alien races. Bhimasena, after having
conquered and slain Hidimba, at first resisted the solicitations of the
sister of this monster, who, having become enamoured of him, presented
herself under the guise of a lovely woman. But at the wish of his elder
brother, Youdhichshira, the king of justice, and with the consent of his
mother, he yielded, and passed some time in the dwelling of this Negrito
or Dravidian Armida.

It will now be necessary to consider some of these races more or less
crossed with alien blood.

In the centre of India, amongst the Vindyah Mountains, live the Djangals
or Bandra-Lokhs, the latter name signifying man-monkey, and thus
associating itself with the tale of Rama, above alluded to. Like most of
the Dravidian tribes, they live in great misery, and show every sign of
their condition in their attenuated figures. One of this tribe measured by
Rousselet was five feet in height. It may here be remarked that the
stature of the Dravidian races exceeds that of the purer Negritos, a fact
due, no doubt, to the influence of crossing. Farther south, in the
Nilgherry Hills, and in the neighbourhood of the Todas and Badagas, dwell
the Kurumbas. and Irulas (children of darkness). Both are weak and
dwarfish, the latter especially so. They inhabit, says Walhouse,[A] the
most secluded, densely wooded fastnesses of the mountain slopes. They are
by popular tradition connected with the aboriginal builders of the rude
stone monuments of the district, though, according to the above-mentioned
authority, without any claim to such distinction. They, however, worship
at these cromlechs from time to time, and are associated with them in
another interesting manner. "The Kurumbas of Nulli," says Walhouse, "one
of the wildest Nilgherry declivities, come up annually to worship at one
of the dolmens on the table-land above, in which they say one of their old
gods resides. Though they are regarded with fear and hatred as sorcerers
by the agricultural B[)a]d[)a]gas of the table-land, one of them must,
nevertheless, at sowing-time be called to guide the first plough for two
or three yards, and go through a mystic pantomime of propitiation to the
earth deity, without which the crop would certainly fail. When so
summoned, the Kurumba must pass the night by the dolmens alone, and I have
seen one who had been called from his present dwelling for the morning
ceremony, sitting after dark on the capstone of a dolmen, with heels and
hams drawn together and chin on knees, looking like some huge ghostly fowl
perched on the mysterious stone." Mr. Gomme has drawn attention to this
and other similar customs in the interesting remarks which he makes upon
the influence of conquered non-Aryan races upon their Aryan subduers.[B]

[Footnote A: _Jour. Anthrop. Inst._, vii. 21.]

[Footnote B: Ethnology and Folk-Lore, p. 46; The Village Community, p.
105.]

Farther south, in Ceylon, the Veddahs live, whom Bailey[A] considers to be
identical with the hill-tribes of the mainland, though, if this be true,
some at least must have undergone a large amount of crossing, judging from
the wavy nature of their hair. The author just quoted says, "The tallest
Veddah I ever saw, a man so towering above his fellows that, till I
measured him, I believed him to be not merely comparatively a tall man,
was only five feet three inches in height. The shortest man I have
measured was four feet one inch. I should say that of males the ordinary
height is from four feet six inches to five feet one inch, and of females
from four feet four inches to four feet eight inches."

[Footnote A: _Trans. Ethn. Soc._, ii. 278.]

In the east the Santals inhabit the basin of the Ganges, and in the west
the Jats belong to the Punjab, and especially to the district of the
Indus. The Kols inhabit the delta of the Indus and the neighbourhood of
Gujerat, and stretch almost across Central India into Behar and the
eastern extremities of the Vindhya Mountains. Other Dravidian tribes are
the Oraons, Jouangs, Buihers, and Gounds. All these races have a stature
of about five feet, and, though much crossed, present more or less marked
Negrito characteristics. Passing farther west, the Brahouis of
Beluchistan, a Dravidian race, who regard themselves as the aboriginal
inhabitants, live side by side with the Belutchis. Finally, in this
direction, there seem to have been near Lake Zerrah, in Persia, Negrito
tribes who are probably aboriginal, and may have formed the historic black
guard of the ancient kings of Susiana.

An examination of the present localisation of these remnants of the
Negrito inhabitants shows how they have been split up, amalgamated with,
or driven to the islands by the conquering invaders. An example of what
has taken place may be found in the case of Borneo, where Negritos still
exist in the centre of the island. The Dyaks chase them like wild beasts,
and shoot down the children, who take refuge in the trees. This will not
seem in the least surprising to those who have studied the history of the
relation between autochthonous races and their invaders. It is the same
story that has been told of the Anglo-Saxon race in its dealings with
aborigines in America, and notably, in our case, in Tasmania.

Turning from Asia to a continent more closely associated, at least in
popular estimation, with pigmy races, we find in Africa several races of
dwarf men, of great antiquity and surpassing interest. The discoveries of
Stanley, Schweinfurth, Miani, and others have now placed at our disposal
very complete information respecting the pigmies of the central part of
the continent, with whom it will, therefore, be convenient to make a
commencement. These pigmies appear to be divided into two tribes, which,
though similar in stature, and alike distinguished by the characteristic
of attaching themselves to some larger race of natives, yet present
considerable points of difference, so much so as to cause Mr. Stanley to
say that they are as unlike as a Scandinavian is to a Turk. "Scattered,"
says the same authority,[A] "among the Balesse, between Ipoto and Mount
Pisgah, and inhabiting the land between the Ngaiyu and Ituri rivers, a
region equal in area to about two-thirds of Scotland, are the Wambutti,
variously called Batwa, Akka, and Bazungu. These people are under-sized
nomads, dwarfs or pigmies, who live in the uncleared virgin forest, and
support themselves on game, which they are very expert in catching. They
vary in height from three feet to four feet six inches. A full-grown adult
may weigh ninety pounds. They plant their village camps three miles around
a tribe of agricultural aborigines, the majority of whom are fine stalwart
people. They use poisoned arrows, with which they kill elephants, and they
capture other kinds of game by the use of traps."

[Footnote A: In Darkest Africa, vol. ii. p. 92.]

The two groups are respectively called Batwa and Wambutti. The former
inhabit the northern parts of the above-mentioned district, the latter the
southern. The former have longish heads, long narrow faces, and small
reddish eyes set close together, whilst the latter have round faces and
open foreheads, gazelle-like eyes, set far apart, and rich yellow ivory
complexion. Their bodies are covered with stiffish grey short hair. Two
further quotations from the same source may be given to convey an idea to
those ignorant of the original work, if such there be, of the appearances
of these dwarfs. Speaking of the queen of a tribe of pigmies, Stanley
says,[A] "She was brought in to see me, with three rings of polished iron
around her neck, the ends of which were coiled like a watch-spring. Three
iron rings were suspended to each ear. She is of a light-brown complexion
with broad round face, large eyes, and small but full lips. She had a
quiet modest demeanour, though her dress was but a narrow fork clout of
bark cloth. Her height is about four feet four inches, and her age may be
nineteen or twenty. I notice when her arms are held against the light a
whity-brown fell on them. Her skin has not that silky smoothness of touch
common to the Zanzibaris, but altogether she is a very pleasing little
creature." To this female portrait may be subjoined one of a male aged
probably twenty-one years and four feet in height.[B] "His colour was
coppery, the fell over the body was almost furry, being nearly half an
inch long, and his hands were very delicate. On his head he wore a bonnet
of a priestly form, decorated with a bunch of parrot feathers, and a broad
strip of bark covered his nakedness."

[Footnote A: In Darkest Africa, vol. i. p. 345.]

[Footnote B: Ibid., ii. 40.]

Jephson states[A] that he found continual traces of them from 270 30' E.
long., a few miles above the Equator, up to the edge of the great forest,
five days' march from Lake Albert. He also says that they are a hardy
daring race, always ready for war, and are much feared by their
neighbours. As soon as a party of dwarfs makes its appearance near a
village, the chief hastens to propitiate them by presents of corn and such
vegetables as he possesses. They never exceed four feet one inch in
height, he informs us, and adds a characteristic which has not been
mentioned by Stanley, one, too, which is very remarkable when it is
remembered how scanty is the facial hair of the Negros and Negritos--the
men have often very long beards. The southern parts of the continent are
occupied by the Bushmen, who are vigorous and agile, of a stature ranging
from four feet six inches to four feet nine inches, and sufficiently well
known to permit me to pass over them without further description. The
smallest woman of this race who has been measured was only three feet
three inches in height, and Barrow examined one, who was the mother of
several children, with a stature of three feet eight inches. The Akoas of
the Gaboon district were a race of pigmies who, now apparently extinct,
formerly dwelt on the north of the Nazareth River. A male of this tribe
was photographed and measured by the French Admiral Fleuriot de l'Angle.
His age was about forty and his stature four feet six inches.

[Footnote A: Emm Pasha, p. 367, et seq.]

Flower[A] says that "another tribe, the M'Boulous, inhabiting the coast
north of the Gaboon River, have been described by M. Marche as probably
the primitive race of the country. They live in little villages, keeping
entirely to themselves, though surrounded by the larger Negro tribes,
M'Pongos and Bakalais, who are encroaching upon them so closely that their
numbers are rapidly diminishing. In 1860 they were not more than 3000; in
1879 they were much less numerous. They are of an earthy-brown colour, and
rarely exceed five feet three inches in height. Another group living
between the Gaboon and the Congo, in Ashangoland, a male of which measured
four feet six inches, has been described by Du Chaillu."

In Loango there is a tribe called Babonko, which was described by Battell
in 1625, in the work entitled "Purchas his Pilgrimes," in the following
terms:--"To the north-east of Mani-Kesock are a kind of little people
called Matimbas; which are no bigger than boyes of twelve yeares old, but
very thicke, and live only upon flesh, which they kill in the woods with
their bows and darts. They pay tribute to Mani-Kesock, and bring all their
elephants' teeth and tayles to him. They will not enter into any of the
Maramba's houses, nor will suffer any one to come where they dwell. And if
by chance any Maramba or people of Longo pass where they dwell, they will
forsake that place and go to another. The women carry bows and arrows as
well as the men. And one of these will walk in the woods alone and kill
the Pongos with their poysoned arrows." It is somewhat surprising that
Tyson, who gives in his essay (p. 80) the account of the same people
published at a later date (1686) by Dapper, should have missed his
fellow-countryman's narrative. The existence of this tribe has been
established by a German expedition, one of the members of which, Dr.
Falkenstein, photographed and measured an adult male whose stature was
four feet six inches.

Krapf[A] states that in the south of Schoa, in a part of Abyssinia as yet
unworked, the Dokos live, who are not taller than four feet. According to
his account, they are of a dark olive colour, with thick prominent lips,
flat noses, small eyes, and long flowing hair. They have no dwellings,
temples, holy trees, chiefs, or weapons, live on roots and fruit, and are
ignorant of fire. Another group was described by Mollieu in 1818 as
inhabiting Tenda-Maie, near the Rio Grande, but very little is known about
them. In a work entitled "The Dwarfs of Mount Atlas," Halliburton[B] has
brought forward a number of statements to prove that a tribe of dwarfs,
named like those of Central Africa, Akkas, of a reddish complexion and
with short woolly hair, live in the district adjoining Soos. These dwarfs
have been alluded to by Harris and Doennenburg,[C] but Mr. Harold Crichton
Browne,[D] who has explored neighbouring districts, is of opinion that
there is no such tribe, and that the accounts of them have been based upon
the examination of sporadic examples of dwarfishness met with in that as
in other parts of the world.

[Footnote A: _Morgenblatt_, 1853 (quoted by Schaafhausen, _Arch. f.
Anth._, 1866, p. 166).]

[Footnote B: London, Nutt, 1891.]

[Footnote C: _Nature_, 1892, ii. 616.]

[Footnote A: _Nature_, 1892, i. 269.]

Finally, in Madagascar it is possible that there may be a dwarf race.
Oliver[A] states that "the Vazimbas are supposed to have been the first
occupants of Ankova. They are described by Rochon, under the name of
Kunios, as a nation of dwarfs averaging three feet six inches in stature,
of a lighter colour than the Negroes, with very long arms and woolly hair.
As they were only described by natives of the coast, and have never been
seen, it is natural to suppose that these peculiarities have been
exaggerated; but it is stated that people of diminutive size still exist
on the banks of a certain river to the south-west." There are many tumuli
of rude work and made of rough stones throughout the country, which are
supposed to be their tombs. In idolatrous days, says Mullens,[B] the
Malagasy deified the Vazimba, and their so-called tombs were the most
sacred objects in the country. In this account may be found further
evidence in favour of Mr. Gomme's theory, to which attention has already
been called.

[Footnote A: _Anthrop. Memoirs_, iii. 1.]

[Footnote B: _Jour. Anthrop. Inst._, v. 181.]

In the great continent of America there does not appear to have ever been,
so far as our present knowledge teaches, any pigmy race. Dr. Brinton, the
distinguished American ethnologist, to whom I applied for information on
this point, has been good enough to write to me that, in his opinion,
there is no evidence of any pigmy race in America. The "little people" of
the "stone graves" in Tennessee, often supposed to be such, were children,
as the bones testify. The German explorer Hassler has alleged the
existence of a pigmy race in Brazil, but testimony is wanting to support
such allegation. There are two tribes of very short but not pigmy stature
in America, the Yahgans of Tierra del Fuego and the Utes of Colorado, but
both of these average over five feet.

Leaving aside for the moment the Lapps, to whom I shall return, there does
not appear to have been at any time a really pigmy race in Europe, so far
as any discoveries which have been made up to the present time show.
Professor Topinard, whose authority upon this point cannot be gainsaid,
informs me that the smallest race known to him in Central Europe is that
of the pre-historic people of the Lozere, who were Neolithic troglodytes,
and are represented probably at the present day by some of the peoples of
South Italy and Sardinia. Their average stature was about five feet two
inches. This closely corresponds with what is known of the stature of the
Platycnemic race of Denbighshire, the Perthi-Chwareu. Busk[A] says of them
that they were of low stature, the mean height, deduced from the lengths
of the long bones, being little more than five feet. As both sexes are
considered together in this description, it is fair to give the male a
stature of about five feet two inches,[B] It also corresponds with the
stature assigned by Pitt-Rivers to a tribe occupying the borders of
Wiltshire and Dorsetshire during the Roman occupation, the average height
of whose males and females was five feet two and a half inches and four
feet ten and three-quarter inches respectively.

[Footnote A: _Jour. Ethn. Soc._, 1869-70, p. 455.]

[Footnote B: Since these pages were printed, Prof. Kollmann, of Basle, has
described a group of Neolithic pigmies as having existed at Schaffhausen.
The adult interments consisted of the remains of full-grown European types
and of small-sized people. These two races were found interred side by
side under precisely similar conditions, from which he concludes that they
lived peaceably together, notwithstanding racial difference. Their stature
(about three feet six inches) may be compared with that of the Veddahs in
Ceylon. Prof. Kollmann believes that they were a distinct species of
mankind.]

Dr. Rahon,[A] who has recently made a careful study of the bones of
pre-historic and proto-historic races, with special reference to their
stature, states that the skeletons attributed to the most ancient and to
the Neolithic races are of a stature below the middle height, the average
being a little over five feet three inches. The peoples who constructed
the Megalithic remains of Roknia and of the Caucasus, were of a stature
similar to our own. The diverse proto-historic populations, Gauls, Franks,
Burgundians, and Merovingians, considered together, present a stature
slightly superior to that of the French of the present day, but not so
much so as the accounts of the historians would have led us to believe.

[Footnote A: _Recherches sur les Ossements Humaines, Anciens et
Prehistonques. Mem. de la Soc. d'Anthrop. de Paris_, Ser, ii. tom. iv.
403.]

It remains now to deal with two races whose physical characters are of
considerable importance in connection with certain points which will be
dealt with in subsequent pages, I mean the Lapps and the Innuit or Eskimo.

The Lapps, according to Karonzine,[A] one of their most recent describers,
are divisible into two groups, Scandinavian and Russian, the former being
purer than the latter race. The average male stature is five feet, a
figure which corresponds closely with that obtained by Mantegazza and
quoted by Topinard. The extremes obtained by this observer amongst men
were, on the one hand, five feet eight inches, and on the other four feet
four inches. As, however, in a matter of this kind we have to deal with
averages and not with extremes, we must conclude that the Lapps, though a
stunted race, are not pigmies, in the sense in which the word is
scientifically employed.

[Footnote A: _L'Anthropologie_, ii. 80.]

The Innuit or Eskimo were called by the original Norse explorers
"Skraelingjar," or dwarfs, a name now converted by the Innuit into
"karalit," which is the nearest approach that they are able to make
phonetically to the former term. They are certainly, on the average, a
people of less than middle stature, yet they can in no sense be described
as Pigmies. Their mean height is five feet three inches. Nansen[A] says of
them, "It is a common error amongst us in Europe to think of the Eskimo as
a diminutive race. Though no doubt smaller than the Scandinavian peoples,
they must be reckoned amongst the middle-sized races, and I even found
amongst those of purest breeding men of nearly six feet in height."

[Footnote A: _Eskimo Life_, p. 20.]

II.

The _raison d'etre_ of Tyson's essay was to explain away the accounts of
the older writers relating to Pigmy races, on the ground that, as no such
races existed, an explanation of some kind was necessary in order to
account for so many and such detailed descriptions as were to be found in
their works. Having now seen not merely that there are such things as
Pigmy races, but that they have a wide distribution throughout the world,
it may be well to consider to which of the existing or extinct races, the
above-mentioned accounts may be supposed to have referred. In this task I
am much aided in several instances by the labours of De Quatrefages, and
as his book is easily accessible, it will be unnecessary for me to repeat
the arguments in favour of his decisions which he has there given.

Starting with Asia, we have in the first place the statement of Pliny,
that "immediately after the nation of the Prusians, in the mountains where
it is said are pigmies, is found the Indus." These Pigmies may be
identified with the Brahouis, now Dravidian, but still possessing the
habit, attributed to them by Pliny, of changing their dwellings twice a
year, in summer and winter, migrations rendered necessary by the search
for food for their flocks. The same author's allusion to the "Spithamaei
Pygmaei" of the mountains in the neighbourhood of the Ganges may apply to
the Santals or some allied tribe, though Pliny's stature for them of two
feet four inches is exaggeratedly diminutive, and he has confused them
with Homer's Pigmies, who were, as will be seen, a totally different
people.

Ctesias[A] tells us that "Middle India has black men, who are called
Pygmies, using the same language as the other Indians; they are, however,
very little; that the greatest do not exceed the height of two cubits, and
the most part only of one cubit and a half. But they nourish the longest
hair, hanging down unto the knees, and even below; moreover, they carry a
beard more at length than any other men; but, what is more, after this
promised beard is risen to them, they never after use any clothing, but
send down, truly, the hairs from the back much below the knees, but draw
the beard before down to the feet; afterward, when they have covered the
whole body with hairs, they bind themselves, using those in the place of a
vestment. They are, moreover, apes and deformed. Of these Pygmies, the
king of the Indians has three thousand in his train; for they are very
skilful archers." No doubt the actual stature has been much diminished in
this account, and, as De Quatrefages suggests, the garment of long
floating grasses which they may well have worn, may have been mistaken for
hair; yet, in the description, he believes that he is able to recognise
the ancestors of the Bandra-Lokh of the Vindhya Mountains. Ctesias' other
statement, that "the king of India sends every fifth year fifty thousand
swords, besides abundance of other weapons, to the nation of the
Cynocephali," may refer to the same or some other tribe.

[Footnote A: The quotation is taken from Ritson, _Fairy Tales_, P. 4.]

De Quatrefages also thinks that an allusion to the ancestors of the Jats,
who would then have been less altered by crossing than now, may be found
in Herodotus' account of the army of Xerxes when he says, "The Eastern
Ethiopians serve with the Indians. They resemble the other Ethiopians,
from whom they only differ in language and hair. The Eastern Ethiopians
have straight hair, while those of Lybia are more woolly than all other
men."

Writing of isles in the neighbourhood of Java, Maundeville says,[A] "In
another yle, ther ben litylle folk, as dwerghes; and thei ben to so meche
as the Pygmeyes, and thei han no mouthe, but in stede of hire mouthe, thei
han a lytylle round hole; and whan thei schulle eten or drynken, thei
taken thorghe a pipe or a penne or suche a thing, and sowken it in, for
thei han no tongue, and therefore thei speke not, but thei maken a maner
of hissynge, as a Neddre dothe, and thei maken signes on to another, as
monkes don, be the whiche every of hem undirstondethe the other."

[Footnote A: Ed. Halliwell, p. 205.]

Strip this statement of the characteristic Maundevillian touches with
regard to the mouth and tongue, and it may refer to some of the insular
races which exist or existed in the district of which he is treating.

A much fuller account[A] by the same author relates to Pigmies in the
neighbourhood of a river, stated by a commentator[B] to be the
Yangtze-Kiang, "a gret ryvere, that men clepen Dalay, and that is the
grettest ryvere of fressche water that is in the world. For there, as it
is most narow, it is more than 4 myle of brede. And thanne entren men azen
in to the lond of the great Chane. That ryvere gothe thorge the lond of
Pigmaus, where that the folk ben of litylle stature, that ben but 3 span
long, and thei ben right faire and gentylle, aftre here quantytees, bothe
the men and the women. And thei maryen hem, whan thei ben half zere of age
and getten children. And thei lyven not, but 6 zeer or 7 at the moste. And
he that lyveth 8 zeer, men holden him there righte passynge old. Theise
men ben the beste worcheres of gold, sylver, cotoun, sylk, and of alle
such thinges, of ony other, that be in the world. And thei han often tymes
werre with the briddes of the contree, that thei taken and eten. This
litylle folk nouther labouren in londes ne in vynes. But thei han grete
men amonges hem, of oure stature, that tylen the lond, and labouren
amonges the vynes for hem. And of the men of oure stature, han thei als
grete skorne and wondre, as we wolde have among us of Geauntes, zif thei
weren amonges us. There is a gode cytee, amonges othere, where there is
duellynge gret plentee of the lytylle folk, and is a gret cytee and a
fair, and the men ben grete that duellen amonges hem; but whan thei getten
ony children, thei ben als litylle as the Pygmeyes, and therefore thei ben
alle, for the moste part, alle Pygmeyes, for the nature of the land is
suche. The great Cane let kepe this cytee fulle wel, for it is his. And
alle be it, that the Pygmeyes ben litylle, zit thei ben fulle resonable,
aftre here age and connen bothen wytt and gode and malice now." This
passage, as will be noted, incorporates the Homeric tale of the battles
between the Pigmies and the Cranes, and is adorned with a representation
of such an encounter. Whether Maundeville's dwarfs were the same as the
Siao-Jin of the Shan-hai-King is a question difficult to decide; but, in
any case, both these pigmy races of legend inhabited a part of what is now
the Chinese Empire. The same Pigmies seem to be alluded to in the rubric
of the Catalan map of the world in the National Library of Paris, the date
of which is A.D. 1375. "Here (N.W. of Catayo-Cathay) grow little men who
are but five palms in height, and though they be little, and not fit for
weighty matters, yet they be brave and clever at weaving and keeping
cattle." If such an explanation may be hazarded, we may perhaps go further
and suppose that Paulus Jovius may have been alluding to the
Koro-puk-guru, when, as Pomponius Mela tells us, he taught that there were
Pigmies beyond Japan. In both these cases, however, it is well to remember
that there is a river in Macedon as well as in Monmouth, and that it is
hazardous to come to too definite a belief as to the exact location of the
Pigmies of ancient writers.

[Footnote A: _Maundeville_, p. 211.]

[Footnote B: _Quart. Rev._, 172, p. 431.]

The continent of Africa yielded its share of Pigmies to the same writers.
The most celebrated of all are those alluded to by Aristotle in his
classical passage, "They (the Cranes) come out of Scythia to the Lakes
above Egypt whence the Nile flows. This is the place whereabouts the
Pigmies dwell. For this is no fable but a truth. Both they and the horses,
as 'tis said, are of a small kind. They are Troglodytes and live in
caves."

Leaving aside the crane part of the tale, which it has been suggested may
really have referred to ostriches, Aristotle's Pigmy race may, from their
situation, be fairly identified with the Akkas described by Stanley and
others. That this race is an exceedingly ancient one is proved by the fact
that Marriette Bey has discovered on a tomb of the ancient Empire of Egypt
a figure of a dwarf with the name Akka inscribed by it. This race is also
supposed to have been that which, alluded to by Homer, has become confused
with other dwarf tribes in different parts of the world.

"So when inclement winters vex the plain
With piercing frosts or thick-descending rain,
To warmer seas the cranes embodied fly,
With noise and order, through the midway sky;
To Pigmy nations wounds and death they bring,
And all the war descends upon the wing."

Attention may here be drawn to Tyson's quotation (p. 78) from Vossius as
to the trade driven by the Pigmies in elephants' tusks, since, as we have
seen, this corresponds with what we now know as to the habits of the
Akkas.

The account which Herodotus gives of the expedition of the Nasamonians is
well known. Five men, chosen by lot from amongst their fellows, crossed
the desert of Lybia, and, having marched several days in deep sand,
perceived trees growing in the midst of the plain. They approached and
commenced to eat the fruit which they bore. Scarcely had they begun to
taste it, when they were surprised by a great number of men of a stature
much inferior to the middle height, who seized them and carried them off.
They were eventually taken to a city, the inhabitants of which were black.
Near this city ran a considerable river whose course was from west to
east, and in which crocodiles were found. In his account of the Akkas, Mr.
Stanley believed that he had discovered the representatives of the Pigmies
mentioned in this history. Speaking of one of these, he says,[A]
"Twenty-six centuries ago his ancestors captured the five young Nasamonian
explorers, and made merry with them at their villages on the banks of the
Niger." It may be correct to say that, at the period alluded to, the dwarf
races of Africa were in more continuous occupancy of the land than is now
the case, but such an identification as that just mentioned gives a false
idea of the position of the Pigmies of Herodotus. De Quatrefages, after a
most careful examination of the question in all its aspects, finds himself
obliged to conclude, either that the Pigmy race seen by the Nasamonians
still exists on the north of the Niger, which has been identified with the
river alluded to by Herodotus, but has not, up to the present, been
discovered; or that it has disappeared from those regions.

[Footnote A: _Op. supra cit._, ii. 40.]

Pomponius Mela has also his account of African Pigmies. Beyond the Arabian
Gulf, and at the bottom of an indentation of the Red Sea, he places the
Panchaeans, also called Ophiophagi, on account of the fact that they fed
upon serpents. More within the Arabian bay than the Panchaeans are the
Pigmies, a minute race, which became exterminated in the wars which it was
compelled to wage with the Cranes for the preservation of its fruits. The
region indicated somewhat corresponds with that which is assigned to the
Dokos by their describer. In this district, too, other dwarf races have
been reported. The French writer whom I have so often cited says, "The
tradition of Eastern African Pigmies has never been lost by the Arabs. At
every period the geographers of this nation have placed their River of
Pigmies much more to the south. It is in this region, a little to the
north of the Equator, and towards the 32 deg. of east longitude, that the Rev.
Fr. Leon des Avanchers has found the Wa-Berrikimos or Cincalles, whose
stature is about four feet four inches. The information gathered by M.
D'Abbadie places towards the 6 deg. of north latitude the Mallas or
Maze-Malleas, with a stature of five feet. Everything indicates that there
exist, at the south of the Galla country, different negro tribes of small
stature. It seems difficult to me not to associate them with the Pigmies
of Pomponius Mela. Only they have retreated farther south. Probably this
change had already taken place at the time when the Roman geographer wrote;
it is, therefore, comprehensible that he may have regarded them as having
disappeared."

Tyson (p. 29) quotes the following passage from Photius:--"That Nonnosus
sailing from Pharsa, when he came to the farthermost of the islands, a
thing very strange to be heard of happened to him; for he lighted on some
(animals) in shape and appearance like men, but little of stature, and of
a black colour, and thick covered with hair all over their bodies. The
women, who were of the same stature, followed the men. They were all
naked, only the elder of them, both men and women, covered their privy
parts with a small skin. They seemed not at all fierce or wild; they had a
human voice, but their dialect was altogether unknown to everybody that
lived about them, much more to those that were with Nonnosus. They lived
upon sea-oysters and fish that were cast out of the sea upon the island.
They had no courage for seeing our men; they were frighted, as we are at
the sight of the greatest wild beast." It is not easy to identify this
race with any existing tribe of Pigmies, but the hairiness of their
bodies, and above all their method of clothing themselves, leave no doubt
that in this account we have a genuine story of some group of
small-statured blacks.

From the foregoing account it will be seen that it is possible with more
or less accuracy and certainty to identify most of those races which,
described by the older writers, had been rejected by their successors.
Time has brought their revenge to Aristotle and Pliny by showing that they
were right, where Tyson, and even Buffon, were wrong.

III.

The little people of story and legend have a much wider area of
distribution than those of real life, and it is the object of this section
to give some idea of their localities and dwellings. Imperfect as such an
account must necessarily be, it will yet suffice I trust in some measure
to show that, like the England of Arthurian times, all the world is
"fulfilled of faery."

In dealing with this part of the subject, it would be possible, following
the example of Keightley, to treat the little folk of each country
separately. But a better idea of their nature, and certainly one which for
my purpose will be more satisfactory, can, I think, be obtained by
classifying them according to the nature of their habitations, and
mentioning incidentally such other points concerning them as it may seem
advisable to bring out.

1. In the first place, then, fairies are found dwelling in mounds of
different kinds, or in the interior of hills. This form of habitation is
so frequently met with in Scotch and Irish accounts of the fairies, that
it will not be necessary for me to burden these pages with instances,
especially since I shall have to allude to them in a further section in
greater detail. Suffice it to say, that many instances of such an
association in the former country will be found in the pages of Mr.
MacRitchie's works, whilst as to the latter, I shall content myself by
quoting Sir William Wilde's statement, that every green "rath" in that
country is consecrated to the "good people." In England there are numerous
instances of a similar kind. Gervase of Tilbury in the thirteenth century
mentions such a spot in Gloucestershire: "There is in the county of
Gloucester a forest abounding in boars, stags, and every species of game
that England produces. In a grovy lawn of this forest there is a little
mount, rising in a point to the height of a man." With this mount he
associates the familiar story of the offering of refreshment to travellers
by its unseen inhabitants. In Warwickshire, the mound upon which
Kenilworth Castle is built was formerly a fairy habitation.[A] Ritson[B]
mentions that the "fairies frequented many parts of the Bishopric of
Durham." There is a hillock or tumulus near Bishopton, and a large hill
near Billingham, both of which used in former time to be "haunted by
fairies." Even Ferry-hill, a well-known stage between Darlington and
Durham, is evidently a corruption of "Fairy-hill." In Yorkshire a similar
story attaches to the sepulchral barrow of Willey How,[C] and in Sussex to
a green mound called the Mount in the parish of Pulborough.[D] The fairies
formerly frequented Bussers Hill in St. Mary's Isle, one of the Scilly
group.[E] The Bryn-yr-Ellyllon,[F] or Fairy-hill, near Mold, may be cited
as a similar instance in Wales, which must again be referred to.

[Footnote A: _Testimony of Tradition_, p. 142.]

[Footnote B: _Op. cit._, p. 56.]

[Footnote C: _Folk Lore_, ii. 115.]

[Footnote D: _Folk Lore Record_, i. 16 and 28.]

[Footnote E: _Ritson_, p. 62.]

[Footnote F: Dawkins, _Early Man in Britain_, p. 433.]

The pages of Keightley's work contain instances of hill-inhabiting fairies
in Scandinavia, Denmark, the Isle of Rugen, Iceland, Germany, and
Switzerland. It is not only in Europe, however, that this form of
habitation is to be met with; we find it also in America. The Sioux have a
curious superstition respecting a mound near the mouth of the Whitestone
River, which they call the Mountain of Little People or Little Spirits;
they believe that it is the abode of little devils in the human form, of
about eighteen inches high and with remarkably large heads; they are armed
with sharp arrows, in the use of which they are very skilful. These little
spirits are always on the watch to kill those who should have the
hardihood to approach their residence. The tradition is that many have
suffered from their malice, and that, among others, three Maha Indians
fell a sacrifice to them a few years since. This has inspired all the
neighbouring nations, Sioux, Mahas, and Ottoes, with such terror, that no
consideration could tempt them to visit the hill.[A]

[Footnote A: Lewis and Clarke, _Travels to the Source of the Missouri
River._ Quoted in _Flint Chips_, p. 346. The tale is also given in _Folk
Lore, Oriental and American_ (Gibbings & Co.), p. 45.]

The mounds or hills inhabited by the fairies are, however, of very diverse
kinds, as we discover when we attempt to analyse their actual nature. In
some cases they are undoubtedly natural elevations. Speaking of the
exploration of the Isle of Unst, Hunt[A] says that the term "Fairy Knowe"
is applied alike to artificial and to natural mounds. "We visited," he
states, "two 'Fairy Knowes' in the side of the hill near the turning of
the road from Reay Wick to Safester, and found that these wonderful relics
were merely natural formations. The workmen were soon convinced of this,
and our digging had the effect of proving to them that the fairies had
nothing to do with at least two of these hillocks." The same may surely be
said of that favourite and important fairy haunt Tomnahurich, near
Inverness, though Mr. MacRitchie seems to think that an investigation,
were such possible, of its interior, might lead to a different
explanation.

[Footnote A: _Anthrop. Mems._, ii. 294.]

In other cases, and these are of great importance in coming to a
conclusion as to the origin of fairy tales, the mounds inhabited by the
little people are of a sepulchral nature. This is the case in the instance
of Willey How, which, when explored by Canon Greenwell, was found, in
spite of its size and the enormous care evidently bestowed upon its
construction, to be merely a cenotaph. A grave there was, sunk more than
twelve feet deep in the chalk rock; but no corporeal tenant had ever
occupied it.

This fact is still more clearly shown in the remarkable case mentioned by
Professor Boyd Dawkins. A barrow called Bryn-yr-Ellyllon (Fairy-hill),
near Mold, was said to be haunted by a ghost clad in golden armour which
had been seen to enter it. The barrow was opened in the year 1832, and was
found to contain the skeleton of a man wearing a golden corselet of
Etruscan workmanship.

The same may be said respecting that famous fairy-hill in Ireland, the
Brugh of the Boyne, though Mr. MacRitchie seems to regard it as having
been a dwelling-place. Mr. Coffey in a most careful study appears to me to
have finally settled the question.[A] He speaks of the remains as those of
probably the most remarkable of the pre-Christian cemeteries of Ireland.
Of the stone basins, whose nature Mr. MacRitchie regards as doubtful, he
says, "There can be hardly any doubt but that they served the purpose of
some rude form of sarcophagus, or of a receptacle for urns." Mr. Coffey
quotes the account from the Leadhar na huidri respecting cemeteries, in
which Brugh is mentioned as amongst the chief of those existing before the
faith (i.e. before the introduction of Christianity). "The nobles of the
Tuatha de Danann were used to bury at Brugh (i.e. the Dagda with his three
sons; also Lugaidh, and Oe, and Ollam, and Ogma, and Etan the Poetess, and
Corpre, the son of Etan), and Cremthain followed them, because his wife
Nar was of the Tuatha Dea, and it was she solicited him that he should
adopt Brugh as a burial-place for himself and his descendants, and this
was the cause that they did not bury at Cruachan." Mr. Coffey also quotes
O'Hartagain's poem, which seems to bear in Mr. MacRitchie's favour:--

"Behold the sidhe before your eyes:
It is manifest to you that it is a king's mansion,
Which was built by the firm Dagda;
It was a wonder, a court, a wonderful hill."

[Footnote A: _Tumuli at New Grange. Trans. Roy. Irish Academy_, XXX. 1.]

But certain of the expressions in this are evidently to be taken
figuratively, since Mr. Coffey states, in connection with this and other
quotations, that their importance consists in that they establish the
existence at a very early date of a tradition associating Brugh na Boinne,
the burial-place of the kings of Tara, with the tumuli on the Boyne. The
association of particular monuments with the Dagda and other divinities
and heroes of Irish mythology implies that the actual persons for whom
they were erected had been forgotten, the pagan traditions being probably
broken by the introduction of Christianity. The mythological ancestors of
the heroes and kings interred at Brugh, who probably were even
contemporarily associated with the cemetery, no doubt subsequently
overshadowed in tradition the actual persons interred there.

Finally, it seems that the fairy hills may have been actual
dwelling-places, fortified or not, of prehistoric peoples. Such were no
doubt some of the Picts' houses so fully dealt with by Mr. MacRitchie,
though Petrie[A] seems to have considered that many of these were
sepulchral in their nature. Such were also the Raths of Ireland and
fortified hills, like the White Cater Thun of Forfarshire.

[Footnote A: _Anthrop. Mems._, ii. 216.]

The interior of the mound-dwellings, as described in the stories, is a
point to which allusion should be made. Sometimes the mound contains a
splendid palace, adorned with gold and silver and precious stones, like
the palace of the King of Elfland in the tale of "Childe Rowland." In the
Scandinavian mound-stories we find a curious incident, for they are
described as being capable of being raised upon red pillars, and as being
so raised when the occupants gave a feast to their neighbours. "There are
three hills on the lands of Bubbelgaard in Funen, which are to this day
called the Dance-hills, from the following occurrence. A lad named Hans
was at service in Bubbelgaard, and as he was coming one evening past the
hills, he saw one of them raised on red pillars, and great dancing and
much merriment underneath."[A] This feature is met with in several of the
stories collected by Keightley, and is made use of in Cruikshank's
picture, which forms the frontispiece to that volume. Lastly, in a number
of cases there is not merely a habitation, but a vast country underneath
the mound. An instance of this occurs in the tale of John Dietrich from
the Isle of Ruegen. Under the Nine-hills he found "that there were in that
place the most beautiful walks, in which he might ramble along for miles
in all directions, without ever finding an end of them, so immensely large
was the hill that the little people lived in, and yet outwardly it seemed
but a little hill, with a few bushes and trees growing on it."[B]

[Footnote A: Quoted by Keightley (p. 9), from Thiele, i. 118.]

[Footnote B: Keightley, 178.]

2. The haunts of the fairies may be in caves, and examples of this form of
dwelling-place are to be met with in different parts of the world. The
Scandinavian hill people live in caves or small hills, and the Elves or
dwarfs of La Romagna "dwell in lonely places, far away in the mountains,
deep in them, in caves or among old ruins and rocks," as Mr. Leland,[A]
who gives a tale respecting these little people, tells us. A Lithuanian
tale[B] tells "how the hero, Martin, went into a forest to hunt,
accompanied by a smith and a tailor. Finding an empty hut, they took
possession of it; the tailor remained in it to cook the dinner, and the
others went forth to the chase. When the dinner was almost ready, there
came to the hut a very little old man with a very long beard, who
piteously begged for food. After receiving it, he sprang on the tailor's
neck and beat him almost to death. When the hunters returned, they found
their comrade groaning on his couch, complaining of illness, but saying
nothing about the bearded dwarf. Next day the smith suffered in a similar
way; but when it came to Martin's turn, he proved too many and too strong
for the dwarf, whom he overcame, and whom he fastened by the beard to the
stump of a tree. But the dwarf tore himself loose before the hunters came
back from the forest and escaped into a cavern. Tracing him by the drops
of blood which had fallen from him, the three companions came to the mouth
of the cavern, and Martin was lowered into it by the two others. Within it
he found three princesses, who had been stolen by three dragons. These
dragons he slew, and the princesses and their property he took to the spot
above which his comrades kept watch, who hoisted them out of the cavern,
but left Martin in it to die. As he wandered about disconsolately, he
found the bearded dwarf, whom he slew. And soon afterwards he was conveyed
out of the cavern by a flying serpent, and was able to punish his
treacherous friends, and to recover the princesses, all three of whom he
simultaneously married."

[Footnote A: _Etrusco Roman Remains_, p. 222.]

[Footnote B: _Folk Lore Record_, i. 85. Mr. Hartland points out to me that
this tale, being a Marchen, does not afford quite such good evidence of
belief as actually or recently existing as a saga.]

Amongst the Magyars,[A] also, in some localities caves are pointed out as
the haunts of fairies, such as the caves in the side of the rock named
Budvar, the cave Borza-vara, near the castle of Dame Rapson; another haunt
of the fairies is the cave near Almas, and the cold wind known as the
"Nemere" is said to blow when the fairy in Almas cave feels cold. On one
occasion the plague was raging in this neighbourhood; the people ascribed
it to the cold blast emanating from the cave; so they hung shirts before
the mouth of the cave and the plague ceased.

[Footnote A: Jones and Kropf, _Folk Tales of the Magyars_, pp. xxxvi. _et
seq_.]

In a widely distant part of the world, the Battaks-Karo,[A] of the high
ground north of Lake Toba in Sumatra, believe in three classes of
mysterious beings, one of which closely corresponds with the fairies of
Europe. The first group are called Hantous; they are giants and dead
Begous (i.e. definitely dead souls), who inhabit Mount Sampouran together
with the second group. These are called Omangs; they are dwarfs who marry
and reproduce their species, live generally in mountains, and have their
feet placed transversely. They must be propitiated, and those making the
ascent of Mount Sebayak sacrifice a white hen to them, or otherwise the
Omangs would throw stones at them. They carry off men and women, and often
keep them for years. They love to dwell amongst stones, and the Roumah
Omang, which is one of their favourite habitations, is a cavern. The third
group, or Orangs Boumans, resemble ordinary beings, but have the power of
making themselves invisible. They come down from the mountains to buy
supplies, but have not been seen for some time. Westenberg, from whom this
information is quoted, regards the last class as being proscribed Battaks,
who have fled for refuge to the mountains. Passing to another continent,
the Iroquois[B] have several stories about Pigmies, one of whom, by name
Go-ga-ah, lives in a little cave.

[Footnote A: _L'Anthropologie_, iv. 83.]

[Footnote B: Smith, _Myths of the Iroquois_. _American Bureau of
Ethnology_, ii. 65.]

3. The little people may occupy a castle or house, or the hill upon which
such a building is erected, or a cave under it. Without dwelling upon the
Brownies and other similar distinctly household spirits, there are certain
classes which must be mentioned in this connection. The Magyar fairies
live in castles on lofty mountain peaks. They build them themselves, or
inherit them from giants. Kozma enumerates the names of about twenty-three
castles which belonged to fairies, and which still exist. Although they
have disappeared from earth, they continue to live, even in our days, in
caves under their castles, in which caves their treasures lie hidden. The
iron gates of Zeta Castle, which have subsided into the ground and
disappeared from the surface, open once in every seven years. On one
occasion a man went in there, and met two beautiful fairies whom he
addressed thus, "How long will you still linger here, my little sisters?"
and they replied, "As long as the cows will give warm milk."

Like the interior of some of the mound-dwellings already mentioned, these
fairy caves are splendid habitations. "Their subterranean habitations are
not less splendid and glittering than were their castles of yore on the
mountain peaks. The one at Firtos is a palace resting on solid gold
columns. The palace at Tartod and the gorgeous one of Dame Rapson are
lighted by three diamond balls, as big as human heads, which hang from
golden chains. The treasure which is heaped up in the latter place
consists of immense gold bars, golden lions with carbuncle eyes, a golden
hen with her brood, and golden casks, filled with gold coin. The treasures
of Fairy Helen are kept in a cellar under Kovaszna Castle, the gates of
the cellar being guarded by a magic cock. This bird only goes to sleep
once in seven years, and anybody who could guess the right moment would be
able to scrape no end of diamond crystals from the walls and bring them
out with him. The fairies who guard the treasures of the Poganyvar (Pagan
Castle) in Marosszek even nowadays come on moonlight nights to bathe in
the lake below."[A] In Brittany, "a number of little men, not more than a
foot high, dwell under the castle of Morlaix. They live in holes in the
ground, whither they may often be seen going, and beating on basins. They
possess great treasures, which they sometimes bring out; and if any one
pass by at the time, allow him to take one handful, but no more. Should
any one attempt to fill his pockets, the money vanishes, and he is
instantly assailed by a shower of boxes on the ear from invisible
hands."[B] In the Netherlands, the "Gypnissen," "queer little women,"
lived in a castle which had been reared in a single night.[C] The Ainu
have tales of the Poiyaumbe, a name which means literally "little beings
residing on the soil" (Mr. Batchelor says that "little" is probably meant
to express endearment or admiration, but one may be allowed to doubt
this). The Ainu, who is the hero of the story, "comes to a tall mountain
with a beautiful house built on its summit. Descending, for his path had
always been through the air, by the side of the house, and looking through
the chinks of the door, he saw a little man and a little woman sitting
beside the fireplace."[D]

[Footnote A: _Folk Tales of the Magyars_, p. xxxviii.]

[Footnote B: Grimm, apud Keightley, 441.]

[Footnote C: _Testimony of Tradition_, p. 86.]

[Footnote D: _Folk Lore Journal_, vi. 195.]

4. The little people or fairies occupy rude stone monuments or are
connected with their building. In Brittany they are associated with
several of the megalithic remains.[A] "At Carnac, near Quiberon," says M.
De Cambry, "in the department of Morbihan, on the sea-shore, is the Temple
of Carnac, called in Breton 'Ti Goriquet' (House of the Gories), one of
the most remarkable Celtic monuments extant. It is composed of more than
four thousand large stones, standing erect in an arid plain, where neither
tree nor shrub is to be seen, and not even a pebble is to be found in the
soil on which they stand. If the inhabitants are asked concerning this
wonderful monument, they say it is an old camp of Caesar's, an army turned
into stone, or that it is the work of the Crions or Gories. These they
describe as little men between two and three feet high, who carried these
enormous masses on their hands; for, though little, they are stronger than
giants. Every night they dance around the stones, and woe betide the
traveller who approaches within their reach! he is forced to join in the
dance, where he is whirled about till, breathless and exhausted, he falls
down, amidst the peals of laughter of the Crions. All vanish with the
break of day. In the ruins of Tresmalouen dwell the Courils. They are of a
malignant disposition, but great lovers of dancing. At night they sport
around the Druidical monuments. The unfortunate shepherd that approaches
them must dance their rounds with them till cockcrow; and the instances
are not few of persons thus ensnared who have been found next morning dead
with exhaustion and fatigue. Woe also to the ill-fated maiden who draws
near the Couril dance! nine months after, the family counts one member
more. Yet so great is the cunning and power of these dwarfs, that the
young stranger bears no resemblance to them, but they impart to it the
features of some lad of the village."

[Footnote A: Keightley, 440.]

In India megalithic remains are also associated with little people.
"Dwarfs hold a distinct place in Hindu mythology; they appear sculptured
on all temples. Siva is accompanied by a body-guard of dwarfs, one of
whom, the three-legged Bhringi, dances nimbly. But coming nearer to
Northern legend, the cromlechs and kistvaens which abound over Southern
India are believed to have been built by a dwarf race, a cubit high, who
could, nevertheless, move and handle the huge stones easily. The villagers
call them Pandayar."[A]

[Footnote A: _Folk Lore_, iv. 401.]

Mr. Meadows Taylor, speaking of cromlechs in India, says, "Wherever I
found them, the same tradition was attached to them, that they were Morie
humu, or Mories' houses; these Mories having been dwarfs who inhabited the
country before the present race of men." Again, speaking of the cromlechs
of Koodilghee, he states, "Tradition says that former Governments caused
dwellings of the description alluded to to be erected for a species of
human beings called 'Mohories,' whose dwarfish stature is said not to have
exceeded a span when standing, and a fist high when in a sitting posture,
who were endowed with strength sufficient to roll off large stones with a
touch of their thumb." There are, he also tells us, similar traditions
attaching to other places, where the dwarfs are sometimes spoken of as
Gujaries.[A]

[Footnote A: _Jour. Ethnol. Soc_., 1868-69, p. 157.]

Of stone structures built by fairies or little people for the use of
others, may be mentioned the churches built by dwarfs in Scotland and
Brittany, and described by Mr. MacRitchie, as also the two following
instances, taken from widely distant parts of the globe. In Brittany, the
dolmen of Manne-er Hrock (Montaigne de la Fee), at Locmariaquer, is said
to have been built by a fairy, in order that a mother might stand upon it
and look out for her son's ship.[A] In Fiji the following tale is told
about the Nanga or sacred stone enclosure:--"This is the word of our
fathers concerning the Nanga. Long ago their fathers were ignorant of it;
but one day two strangers were found sitting in the Rara (public square),
and they said they had come up from the sea to give them the Nanga. They
were little men, and very dark-skinned, and one of them had his face and
bust painted red, while the other was painted black. Whether these were
gods or men our fathers did not tell us, but it was they who taught our
people the Nanga. This was in the old times, when our fathers were living
in another land--not in this place, for we are strangers here."[B] It is
worthy of note that the term "Nanga" applies not merely to the enclosure,
but also to the secret society which held its meetings therein.[C]

[Footnote A: _Flint Chips_, p. 104.]

[Footnote B: Fison, _Journ. Anthrop. Inst._, xiv, 14.]

[Footnote C: Joske, _Internat. Arch. f. Ethnographie_, viii. 254.]

5. The little people make their dwellings either in the interior of a
stone or amongst stones. I am not here alluding to the stones on the sides
of mountains which are the doorways to fairy dwellings, but to a closer
connection, which will be better understood from some of the following
instances than from any lengthy explanation. The Duergas of the
Scandinavian Eddas had their dwelling-places in stones, as we are told in
the story of Thorston, who "came one day to an open part of the wood,
where he saw a great rock, and out a little way from it a dwarf, who was
horridly ugly."[A] In Ireland, in Innisbofin, co. Galway, Professor Haddon
relates that the men who were quarrying a rock in the neighbourhood of the
harbour refused to work at it any longer, as it was so full of "good
people" as to be hot.[B] In England the Pixy-house of Devon is in a stone,
and a large stone is also connected with the story of the Frensham
caldron, though it is not clear that the fairies lived in the rock
itself.[C] Oseberrow or Osebury (_vulgo_ Rosebury) Rock, in Lulsey,
Worcestershire, was, according to tradition, a favourite haunt of the
fairies.[D] In another part of Worcestershire, on the side of the
Cotswolds, there is, in a little spinney, a large flat stone, much worn on
its under surface, which is called the White Lady's Table. This personage
is supposed to take her meals with the fairies at this rock, but what the
exact relation of the little people to it as a dwelling-place may be, I
have not been able to learn.

[Footnote A: Keightley, 70.]

[Footnote B: _Folklore_, iv. 49.]

[Footnote C: Ritson, 106, quoting Aubrey's _Natural History of Surrey_,
iii. 366.]

[Footnote D: Allies, _Antiquities and Folk-Lore of Worcestershire_,
p.443.]

There is an Iroquois tale of dwarfs, in which the summons to the Pigmies
was given by knocking upon a large stone.[A] The little people of
Melanesia seem also to be associated in some measure with stones. Speaking
of these beings, Mr. Codrington says,[B] "There are certain Vuis having
rather the nature of fairies. The accounts of them are vague, but it is
argued that they had never left the islands before the introduction of
Christianity, and indeed have been seen since. Not long ago there was a
woman living at Mota who was the child of one, and a very few years ago a
female Vui with a child was seen in Saddle Island. Some of these were
called Nopitu, which come invisibly, or possess those with whom they
associate themselves. The possessed are called Nopitu. Such persons would
lift a cocoa-nut to drink, and native shell money would run out instead of
the juice and rattle against their teeth; they would vomit up money, or
scratch and shake themselves on a mat, when money would pour from their
fingers. This was often seen, and believed to be the doing of a Nopitu. In
another manner of manifestation, a Nopitu would make himself known as a
party were sitting round an evening fire. A man would hear a voice in his
thigh, 'Here am I, give me food.' He would roast a little red yam, and
fold it in the corner of his mat. He would soon find it gone, and the
Nopitu would begin a song. Its voice was so small and clear and sweet,
that once heard it never could be forgotten; but it sang the ordinary Mota
songs. Such spirits as these, if seen or found, would disappear beside a
stone; they were smaller than the native people, darker, and with long
straight hair. But they were mostly unseen, or seen only by those to whom
they took a fancy. They were the friendly Trolls or Robin Goodfellows of
the islands; a man would find a fine red yam put for him on the seat
beside the door, or the money which he paid away returned within his
purse. A woman working in her garden heard a voice from the fruit of a
gourd asking for some food, and when she pulled up an arum or dug out a
yam, another still remained; but when she listened to another spirit's
panpipes, the first in his jealousy conveyed away garden and all." Amongst
the Australians also supernatural beings dwell amongst the rocks, and the
Annamites and Arabians know of fairies living amongst the rocks and
hills.[C]

[Footnote A: Smith, _Myths of Iroquois, ut supra._]

[Footnote B: _Journ. Anthrop. Inst._, x. 261.]

[Footnote C: Hartland, _Science of Fairy Tales_, p. 351.]

6. The little people may have their habitation in forests or trees. Such
were the Skovtrolde, or Wood-Trolls of Thorlacius,[A] who made their home
on the earth in great thick woods, and the beings in South Germany who
resemble the dwarfs, and are called Wild, Wood, Timber and Moss People.[B]
"These generally live together in society, but they sometimes appear
singly. They are small in stature, yet somewhat larger than the Elf, being
the size of children of three years, grey and old-looking, hairy and clad
in moss. Their lives are attached, like those of the Hamadryads, to the
trees, and if any one causes by friction the inner bark to loosen, a
Wood-woman dies." In Scandinavia there is also a similarity between
certain of the Elves and Hamadryads. The Elves "not only frequent trees,
but they make an interchange of form with them. In the churchyard of Store
Heddinge, in Zeeland, there are the remains of an oak-wood. These, say the
common people, are the Elle King's soldiers; by day they are trees, by
night valiant soldiers. In the wood of Rugaard, in the same island, is a
tree which by night becomes a whole Elle-people, and goes about all alive.
It has no leaves upon it, yet it would be very unsafe to go to break or
fell it, for the underground people frequently hold their meetings under
its branches. There is, in another place, an elder-tree growing in a
farmyard, which frequently takes a walk in the twilight about the yard,
and peeps in through the window at the children when they are alone. The
linden or lime-tree is the favourite haunt of the Elves and cognate
beings, and it is not safe to be near it after sunset."[C] In England, the
fairies also in some cases frequent the woods, as is their custom in the
Isle of Man, and in Wales, where there was formerly, in the park of Sir
Robert Vaughan, a celebrated old oak-tree, named Crwben-yr-Ellyl, or the
Elf's Hollow Tree. In Formosa[D] there is also a tale of little people
inhabiting a wood. "A young Botan became too ardent in his devotion to a
young lady of the tribe, and was slain by her relatives, while, as a
warning as to the necessity for love's fervour being kept within bounds,
his seven brothers were banished by the chief. The exiles went forth into
the depths of the forest, and in their wanderings after a new land they
crossed a small clearing, in which a little girl, about a span in height,
was seated peeling potatoes. 'Little sister,' they queried, 'how come you
here? where is your home?' 'I am not of homes nor parents,' she replied.
Leaving her, they went still farther into the forest, and had not gone far
when they saw a little man cutting canes, and farther on to the right a
curious-looking house, in front of which sat two diminutive women combing
their hair. Things looked so queer that the travellers hesitated about
approaching nearer, but, eager to find a way out of the forest, they
determined in their extremity to question the strange people. The two
women, when interrogated, turned sharply round, showing eyes of a flashing
red; then looking upward, their eyes became dull and white, and they
immediately ran into the house, the doors and windows of which at once
vanished, the whole taking the form and appearance of an isolated
boulder." Amongst the Maories also we have "te tini ote hakuturi," or "the
multitude of the wood-elves," the little people who put the chips all back
into the tree Rata had felled and stood it up again, because he had not
paid tribute to Tane.[E]

[Footnote A: Quoted by Keightley, p. 62.]

[Footnote B: Grimm ap. Keightley, p. 230.]

[Footnote C: Keightley, p. 92, quoting from Thiele.]

[Footnote D: _Folk Lore Journal_, v. 143.]

[Footnote E: Tregear, _Journ. Anth. Inst._, xix. 121.]

7. The association of little people with water as a home is a widespread
notion. The Sea-Trows of the Shetlanders inhabit a region of their own at
the bottom of the sea. They here respire a peculiar atmosphere, and live
in habitations constructed of the choicest submarine productions. They
are, however, not always small, but may be of diverse statures, like the
Scandinavian Necks. In Germany the Water-Dwarfs are also known. At
Seewenheiher, in the Black Forest, a little water-man (_Seemaennlein_) used
to come and join the people, work the whole day along with them, and in
the evening go back into the lakes.[A] The size of the Breton Korrigs or
Korrigan, if we may believe Villemarque in his account of this folk, does
not exceed two feet, but their proportions are most exact, and they have
long flowing hair, which they comb out with great care. Their only dress
is a long white veil, which they wind round their body. Seen at night or
in the dusk of the evening, their beauty is great; but in the daylight
their eyes appear red, their hair is white, and their faces wrinkled;
hence they rarely let themselves be seen by day. They are fond of music,
and have fine voices, but are not much given to dancing. Their favourite
haunts are the springs, by which they sit and comb their hair.[B] The
Maories also have their Water-Pigmies, the Ponaturi, who are, according to
Mr. Tregear, elves, little tiny people, mostly dwellers in water, coming
ashore to sleep.[C] "The spirits most commonly met with in African
mythology," says Mr. Macdonald, "are water or river spirits, inhabiting
deep pools where there are strong eddies and under-currents. Whether they
are all even seen now-a-days it is difficult to determine, but they must
at one time have either shown themselves willingly, or been dragged from
their hiding-places by some powerful magician, for they are one and all
described. They are dwarfs, and correspond to the Scottish conception of
kelpies or fairies. They are wicked and malevolent beings, and are never
credited with a good or generous action. Whatever they possess they keep,
and greedily seize upon any one who comes within their reach. 'One of
them, the Incanti, corresponds to the Greek Python, and another, called
Hiti, appears in the form of a small and very ugly man, and is exceedingly
malevolent' (Brownlee). It is certain death to see an Incanti, and no one
but the magicians sees them except in dreams, and in that case the
magicians are consulted, and advise and direct what is to be done."[D]

[Footnote A: Grimm ap. Keightley, p. 261.]

[Footnote B: Villemarque, ibid., 431.]

[Footnote C: Tregear, _ut supra._]

[Footnote D: _Journ. Anthrop. Inst._, xx. 124.]

Dr. Nansen, speaking of the Ignerssuit (plural of Ignersuak, which means
"great fire"), says that they are for the most part good spirits, inclined
to help men. The entrance to their dwellings is on the sea-shore.
According to the Eskimo legend, "The first earth which came into existence
had neither seas nor mountains, but was quite smooth. When the One above
was displeased with the people upon it, He destroyed the world. It burst
open, and the people fell down into the rifts and became Ignerssuit and
the water poured over everything."[A] The spirits here alluded to appear
to be the same as those described by Mr. Boas as Uissuit in his monograph
on the Central Eskimo. He describes them as "a strange people that live in
the sea. They are dwarfs, and are frequently seen between Iglulik and
Netchillik, where the Anganidjen live, an Innuit tribe whose women are in
the habit of tracing rings around their eyes. There are men and women
among the Uissuit, and they live in deep water, never coming to the
surface. When the Innuit wish to see them, they go in their boats to a
place where they cannot see the bottom, and try to catch them with hooks
which they slowly move up and down. As soon as they get a bite they draw
in the line. The Uissuit are thus drawn up; but no sooner do they approach
the surface than they dive down headlong again, only their legs having
emerged from the water. The Innuit have never succeeded in getting one out
of the water."[A]

[Footnote A: Nansen, _ut supra_, p. 259.]

[Footnote A: _American Bureau of Ethnology_, vi. 612.]

8. Amongst habitations not coming under any of the above categories may be
mentioned the moors and open places affected by the Cornish fairies, and
lastly the curious residences of the Kirkonwaki or Church-folk of the
Finns. "It is an article of faith with the Finns that there dwell under
the altar in every church little misshapen beings which they call
Kirkonwaki, i.e., Church-folk. When the wives of these little people have
a difficult labour, they are relieved if a Christian woman visits them and
lays her hand upon them. Such service is always rewarded by a gift of gold
and silver."[A] These folk evidently correspond to the Kirkgrims of
Scandinavian countries, and the traditions respecting both are probably
referable to the practice of foundation sacrifices.

[Footnote A: Grimm ap. Keightley, p. 488.]

IV.

The subject of Pigmy races and fairy tales cannot be considered to have
been in any sense fully treated without some consideration of a theory
which, put forward by various writers and in connection with the legends
of diverse countries, has recently been formulated by Mr. MacRitchie in a
number of most interesting and suggestive books and papers. An early
statement of this theory is to be found in a paper by Mr. J.F. Campbell,
in which he stated, "It is somewhat remarkable that traditions still
survive in the Highlands of Scotland which seem to be derived from the
habits of Scotch tribes like the Lapps in our day. Stories are told in
Sutherlandshire about a 'witch' who milked deer; a 'ghost' once became
acquainted with a forester, and at his suggestion packed all her
plenishing on a herd of deer, when forced to flit by another and a bigger
'ghost;' the green mounds in which 'fairies' are supposed to dwell closely
resemble the outside of Lapp huts. The fairies themselves are not
represented as airy creatures in gauze wings and spangles, but they appear
in tradition as small cunning people, eating and drinking, living close at
hand in their green mound, stealing children and cattle, milk and food,
from their bigger neighbours. They are uncanny, but so are the Lapps. My
own opinion is that these Scotch traditions relate to the tribes who made
kitchen-middens and lake-dwellings in Scotland, and that they were allied
to Lapps."[A] Such in essence is Mr. MacRitchie's theory, which has been
so admirably summarised by Mr. Jacobs in the first of that series of
fairy-tale books which has added a new joy to life, that I shall do myself
the pleasure of quoting his statement in this place. He says: "Briefly
put, Mr. MacRitchie's view is that the elves, trolls, and fairies
represented in popular tradition are really the mound-dwellers, whose
remains have been discovered in some abundance in the form of green
hillocks, which have been artificially raised over a long and low passage
leading to a central chamber open to the sky. Mr. MacRitchie shows that in
several instances traditions about trolls or 'good people' have attached
themselves to mounds which long afterwards, on investigation, turned out
to be evidently the former residence of men of smaller build than the
mortals of to-day. He goes on further to identify these with the Picts--
fairies are called 'Pechs' in Scotland--and other early races, but with
these ethnological equations we need not much concern ourselves. It is
otherwise with the mound traditions and their relation, if not to fairy
tales in general, to tales about fairies, trolls, elves, &c. These are
very few in number, and generally bear the character of anecdotes. The
fairies, &c., steal a child; they help a wanderer to a drink and then
disappear into a green hill; they help cottagers with their work at night,
but disappear if their presence is noticed; human midwives are asked to
help fairy mothers; fairy maidens marry ordinary men, or girls marry and
live with fairy husbands. All such things may have happened and bear no
such _a priori_ marks of impossibility as speaking animals, flying through
the air, and similar incidents of the folk-tale pure and simple. If, as
archaeologists tell us, there was once a race of men in Northern Europe
very short and hairy, that dwelt in underground chambers artificially
concealed by green hillocks, it does not seem unlikely that odd survivors
of the race should have lived on after they had been conquered and nearly
exterminated by Aryan invaders, and should occasionally have performed
something like the pranks told of fairies and trolls."[B] In the same
place, and also in another article,[C] the writer just quoted has applied
this theory to the explanation of the story of "Childe Rowland."

[Footnote A: _Journ. Ethnol. Soc._, 1869-70, p. 325.]

[Footnote B: _English Fairy Tales_, p. 241.]

[Footnote C: _Folk Lore_, ii. 126.]

Mr. MacRitchie has, in another paper,[A] collected a number of instances
of the use of the word _Sith_ in connection with hillocks and tumuli,
which are the resort of the fairies. Here also he discusses the possible
connection of that word with that of _Tshud_, the title of the vanished
supernatural inhabitants of the land amongst the Finns and other "Altaic"
Turanian tribes of Russia, as in other places he has endeavoured to trace
a connection between the Finns and the Feinne. Into these etymological
questions I have no intention to enter, since I am not qualified to do so,
nor is it necessary, as they have been fully dealt with by Mr. Nutt, whose
opinion on this point is worthy of all attention.[B] But it may be
permitted to me to inquire how far Mr. MacRitchie's views tally with the
facts mentioned in the foregoing section. I shall therefore allude to a
few points which appear to me to show that the origin of the belief in
fairies cannot be settled in so simple a manner as has been suggested, but
is a question of much greater complexity--one in which, as Mr. Tylor
says, more than one mythic element combines to make up the whole.

[Footnote A: _Journ. Roy. Soc. Antiq. Ireland_, iii. 367.]

[Footnote A: _Folk and Hero Tales from Argyleshire_, p. 420.]

(1.) In the first place, then, it seems clear, so far as our present
knowledge teaches us, that there never was a really Pigmy race inhabiting
the northern parts of Scotland.

The scanty evidence which we have on this point, so far as it goes, proves
the truth of this assertion. Mr. Carter Blake found in the Muckle Heog of
the Island of Unst, one of the Shetlands, together with stone vessels,
human interments of persons of considerable stature and of great muscular
strength. Speaking of the Keiss skeletons, Professor Huxley says that the
males are, the one somewhat above, and the other probably about the
average stature; while the females are short, none exceeding five feet two
inches or three inches in height.[A] And Dr. Garson, treating of the
osteology of the ancient inhabitants of the Orkneys, says that the female
skeleton which he examined was about five feet two inches in height, i.e.,
about the mean height of the existing races of England.[B] There is no
evidence that Lapps and Eskimo ever visited these parts of the world; and
if they did, as we have seen, their stature, though stunted, cannot fairly
be described as pigmy. Even if we grant that the stature of the early
races did not average more than five feet two inches, which, by the way,
was the height of the great Napoleon, it is more than doubtful whether it
fell so far short of that of succeeding races as to cause us to imagine
that it gave rise to tales about a race of dwarfs.

[Footnote A: Laing, _Prehistoric Remains of Caithness_, p. 101.]

[Footnote B: _Journ. Anthrop. Inst._, xiii. 60.]

(2.) The mounds with which the tales of little people are associated have
not, in many cases, been habitations, but were natural or sepulchral in
their nature. It may, of course, be argued that the story having once
arisen in connection with one kind of mound, may, by a process easy to
understand, have been transferred to other hillocks similar in appearance,
though diverse in nature. It is difficult to see, however, how this could
have occurred in Yorkshire and other parts of England, where it is not
argued that the stunted inhabitants of the North ever penetrated. It is
still more difficult to explain how similar legends can have originated in
America in connection with mounds, since there never were Pigmy races in
that continent.

(3.) The rude and simple arrangements of the interior of these mound
dwellings might have, in the process of time, become altered into the
gorgeous halls, decked with gold and silver and precious stones, as we
find them in the stories; they might even, though this is much more
difficult to understand, have become possessed of the capacity for being
raised upon red pillars. But there is one pitch to which, I think, they
could never have attained, and that is the importance which they assume
when they become the external covering of a large and extensive tract of
underground country. Here we are brought face to face with a totally
different explanation, to which I shall recur in due course.

(4.) The little people are not by any means associated entirely with
mounds, as the foregoing section is largely intended to show. Their
habitations may be in or amongst stones, in caves, under the water, in
trees, or amongst the glades of a forest; they may dwell on mountains, on
moors, or even under the altars of churches. We may freely grant that some
of these habitations fall into line with Mr. MacRitchie's theory, but they
are not all susceptible of such an explanation.

(5.) The association of giants and dwarfs in certain places, even the
confusion of the two races, seems somewhat difficult of explanation by
this theory. In Ireland the distinction between the two classes is sharper
than in other places, since, as Sir William Wilde pointed out, whilst
every green rath in that island is consecrated to the fairies or "good
people," the remains attributed to the giants are of a different character
and probably of a later date. In some places, however, a mound similar to
those often connected with fairies is associated with a giant, as is the
case at Sessay parish, near Thirsk,[A] and at Fyfield in Wiltshire. The
chambered tumulus at Luckington is spoken of as the Giant's Caves, and
that at Nempnet in Somersetshire as the Fairy's Toot. In Denmark, tumuli
seem to be described indifferently as Zettestuer (Giants' Chambers) or
Troldestuer (Fairies' Chambers).[B] In "Beowulf" a chambered tumulus is
described, in the recesses of which were treasures watched over for three
hundred years by a dragon. This barrow was of stone, and the work of
giants.

Seah on enta geweorc, Looked on the giant's work,
hu etha stan-bogan, how the stone arches,
stapulinn-faeste, on pillars fast,
ece eoreth-reced the eternal earth-house
innan healde. held within.

[Footnote A: _Folk Lore_, i. 130.]

[Footnote B: _Flint Chips_, p. 412.]

The mounds have sometimes been made by giants and afterwards inhabited by
dwarfs, as in the case of the Nine-hills, already alluded to. In others,
they are at the same time inhabited by giants, dwarfs, and others, as in
the story of the Dwarf's Banquet,[A] and still more markedly in the
Wunderberg. "The celebrated Wunderberg, or Underberg, on the great moor
near Salzburg, is the chief haunt of the Wild-women. The Wunderberg is
said to be quite hollow, and supplied with stately palaces, churches,
monasteries, gardens, and springs of gold and silver. Its inhabitants,
beside the Wild-women, are little men, who have charge of the treasures it
contains, and who at midnight repair to Salzburg to perform their
devotions in the cathedral; giants, who used to come to the church of
Groedich and exhort the people to lead a godly and pious life; and the
great Emperor Charles V., with golden crown and sceptre, attended by
knights and lords. His grey beard has twice encompassed the table at which
he sits, and when it has the third time grown round it, the end of the
world and the appearance of the Antichrist will take place."[B]

[Footnote A: Grimm ap. Keightley, 130.]

[Footnote B: Grimm ap. Keightley, 234.]

In the folk-tales of the Magyars we meet with a still more remarkable
confusion between these two classes of beings. Some of the castles
described in these stories are inhabited by giants, others by fairies.
Again, the giants marry; their wives are fairies, so are their daughters.
They had no male issue, as their race was doomed to extermination. They
fall in love, and are fond of courting. Near Bikkfalva, in Haromszek, the
people still point out the "Lover's Bench" on a rock where the amorous
giant of Csigavar used to meet his sweetheart, the "fairy of
Veczeltetoe."[A]

[Footnote A: _Folk Tales of the Magyars_, p. xxix.]

(6.) Tales of little people are to be found in countries where there never
were any Pigmy races. Not to deal with other, and perhaps more debatable
districts, we find an excellent example of this in North America. Besides
the instances mentioned in the foregoing section, the following may be
mentioned. Mr. Leland, speaking of the Un-a-games-suk, or Indian spirits
of the rocks and streams, says that these beings enter far more largely,
deeply, and socially into the life and faith of the Indians than elves or
fairies ever did into those of the Aryan race.[A] In his Algonquin Legends
the same author also alludes to small people.

[Footnote A: _Memoirs_, i. 34.]

Dr. Brinton tells me that the Micmacs have tales of similar Pigmies, whom
they call Wig[)u]l[)a]d[)u]mooch, who tie people with cords during their
sleep, &c. Mr. L.L. Frost, of Susanville, Lassen County, California, tells
us how, when he requested an Indian to gather and bring in all the
arrow-points he could find, the Indian declared them to be "no good," that
they had been made by the lizards. Whereupon Mr. Frost drew from him the
following lizard-story. "There was a time when the lizards were little
men, and the arrow-points which are now found were shot by them at the
grizzly bear. The bears could talk then, and would eat the little men
whenever they could catch them. The arrows of the little men were so small
that they would not kill the bears when shot into them, and only served to
enrage them." The Indian could not tell how the little men became
transformed into lizards.[A] Again, the Shoshones of California dread
their infants being changed by Ninumbees or dwarfs.[B]

[Footnote A: _Folk Lore Journal_, vii. 24.]

[Footnote B: Hartland, _ut supra_, p. 351.]

Finally, every one has read about the Pukwudjies, "the envious little
people, the fairies, the pigmies," in the pages of Longfellow's
"Hiawatha."[A] It ought to be mentioned that Mr. Leland states that the
red-capped, scanty-shirted elf of the Algonquins was obtained from the
Norsemen; but if, as he says, the idea of little people has sunk so deeply
into the Indian mind, it cannot in any large measure have been derived
from this source.[B]

[Footnote A: xviii.]

[Footnote B: _Etrusco Roman Remains_, p. 162.]

(7.) The stunted races whom Mr. MacRitchie considers to have formed the
subjects of the fairy legend have themselves tales of little people. This
is true especially of the Eskimo, as will have been already noticed, a
fact to which my attention was called by Mr. Hartland.

For the reasons just enumerated, I am unable to accept Mr. MacRitchie's
theory as a complete explanation of the fairy question, but I am far from
desirous of under-estimating the value and significance of his work. Mr.
Tylor, as I have already mentioned, states, in a sentence which may yet
serve as a motto for a work on the whole question of the origin of the
fairy myth, that "various different facts have given rise to stories of
giants and dwarfs, more than one mythic element perhaps combining to form
a single legend--a result perplexing in the extreme to the mythological
interpreter."[A] And I think it may be granted that Mr. MacRitchie has
gone far to show that one of these mythic elements, one strand in the
twisted cord of fairy mythology, is the half-forgotten memory of skulking
aborigines, or, as Mr. Nutt well puts it, the "distorted recollections of
alien and inimical races." But it is not the only one. It is far from
being my intention to endeavour to deal exhaustively with the difficult
question of the origin of fairy tales. Knowledge and the space permissible
in an introduction such as this would alike fail me in such a task. It
may, however, be permissible to mention a few points which seem to impress
themselves upon one in making a study of the stories with which I have
been dealing. In the first place, one can scarcely fail to notice how much
in common there is between the tales of the little people and the accounts
of that underground world, which, with so many races, is the habitation of
the souls of the departed. Dr. Callaway has already drawn attention to
this point in connection with the ancestor-worship of the Amazulu.[B] He
says, "It may be worth while to note the curious coincidence of thought
among the Amazulu regarding the Amatongo or Abapansi, and that of the
Scotch and Irish regarding the fairies or 'good people.' For instance, the
'good people' of the Irish have assigned to them, in many respects the
same motives and actions as the Amatongo. They call the living to join
them, that is, by death; they cause disease which common doctors cannot
understand nor cure; they have their feelings, interests, partialities,
and antipathies, and contend with each other about the living. The common
people call them their friends or people, which is equivalent to the term
_abakubo_ given to the Amatongo. They reveal themselves in the form of the
dead, and it appears to be supposed that the dead become 'good people,' as
the dead among the Amazulu become Amatongo; and in funeral processions of
the 'good people' which some have professed to see, are recognised the
forms of those who have just died, as Umkatshana saw his relatives amongst
the Abapansi. The power of holding communion with the 'good people' is
consequent on an illness, just as the power to divine amongst the natives
of this country. So also in the Highland tales, a boy who had been carried
away by the fairies, on his return to his own home speaks of them as 'our
folks,' which is equivalent to _abakwetu_, applied to the Amatongo, and
among the Highlands they are called the 'good people' and 'the folk.' They
are also said to 'live underground,' and are therefore Abapansi or
subterranean. They are also, like the Abapansi, called ancestors. Thus the
Red Book of Clanranald is said not to have been dug up, but to have been
found on the moss; it seemed as if the ancestors sent it." There are other
points which make in the same direction. The soul is supposed by various
races to be a little man, an idea which at once links the manes of the
departed with Pigmy people. Thus Dr. Nansen tells us that amongst the
Eskimo a man has many souls. The largest dwell in the larynx and in the
left side, and are tiny men about the size of a sparrow. The other souls
dwell in other parts of the body, and are the size of a finger-joint.[C]
And the Macusi Indians[D] believe that although the body will decay, "the
man in our eyes" will not die, but wander about; an idea which is met with
even in Europe, and which perhaps gives us a clue to the conception of
smallness in size of the shades of the dead. Again, the belief that the
soul lives near the resting-place of its body is widespread, and at least
comparable with, if not equivalent to, the idea that the little people of
Scotland, Ireland, Brittany, and India live in the sepulchral mounds or
cromlechs of those countries. Closely connected with this is the idea of
the underground world, peopled by the souls of the departed like the
Abapansi, the widespread nature of which idea is shown by Dr. Tylor. "To
take one example, in which the more limited idea seems to have preceded
the more extensive, the Finns,[E] who feared the ghost of the departed as
unkind, harmful beings, fancied them dwelling with their bodies in the
grave, or else, with what Castren thinks a later philosophy, assigned them
their dwelling in the subterranean Tuonela. Tuonela was like this upper
earth; the sun shone there, there was no lack of land and water, wood and
field, tilth and meadow; there were bears and wolves, snakes and pike, but
all things were of a hurtful, dismal kind; the woods dark and swarming
with wild beasts, the water black, the cornfields bearing seed of snake's
teeth; and there stern, pitiless old Tuoni, and his grim wife and son,
with the hooked fingers with iron points, kept watch and ward over the
dead lest they should escape."

[Footnote A: _Primitive Culture_, i. 388.]

[Footnote B: _Religious System of the Amazulu_, p. 226.]

[Footnote C: Nansen, _ut supra_, p. 227.]

[Footnote D: Tylor, _ut supra_, i. 431.]

[Footnote E: Tylor, _ut supra_, ii. 80.]

It is impossible not to see a connection between such conceptions as these
and the underground habitations of the little people entered by the green
mound which covered the bones of the dead. But the underground world was
not only associated with the shades of the departed; it was in many parts
of the world the place whence races had their origin, and here also we
meet in at least one instance known to me with the conception of a little
folk. A very widespread legend in Europe, and especially in Scandinavia,
according to Dr. Nansen, tells how the underground or invisible people
came into existence. "The Lord one day paid a visit to Eve as she was busy
washing her children. All those who were not yet washed she hurriedly hid
in cellars and corners and under big vessels, and presented the others to
the Visitor. The Lord asked if these were all, and she answered 'Yes;'
whereupon He replied, 'Then those which are _dulde_ (hidden) shall remain
_hulde_ (concealed, invisible). And from them the huldre-folk are
sprung."[A] There is also the widespread story of an origin underground,
as amongst the Wasabe, a sub-gens of the Omahas, who believe that their
ancestors were made under the earth and subsequently came to the
surface.[B] There is a similar story amongst the Z[=u]nis of Western New
Mexico. In journeying to their present place of habitation, they passed
through four worlds, all in the interior of this, the passage way from
darkness to light being through a large reed. From the inner world they
were led by the two little war-gods, Ah-ai-[=u]-ta and M[=a]-[=a]-s[=e]-we,
twin brothers, sons of the Sun, who were sent by the Sun to bring this
people to his presence.[C] From these stories it would appear that the
underground world, whether looked upon as the habitation of the dead or
the place of origination of nations, is connected with the conception of
little races and people. That it is thus responsible for some portion of
the conception of fairies seems to me to be more than probable.

[Footnote A: Nansen, _ut supra_, p. 262.]

[Footnote B: Dorset, _Omaha Sociology. American Bureau of Ethnology_, iii.
211.]

[Footnote C: Stevenson, _Religious Life of Zuni Child. American Bureau of
Ethnology_, v. 539.]

It is hardly necessary to allude to those spirits which animistic ideas
have attached amongst other objects and places, to trees and wells. They
are fully dealt with in Dr. Tylor's pages, and must not be forgotten in
connection with the present question.

To sum up, then, it appears as if the idea, so widely diffused, of little,
invisible, or only sometimes visible, people, is of the most complex
nature. From the darkness which shrouds it, however, it is possible to
discern some rays of light. That the souls of the departed, and the
underground world which they inhabit, are largely responsible for it, is,
I hope, rendered probable by the facts which I have brought forward. That
animistic ideas have played an important part in the evolution of the idea
of fairy peoples, is not open to doubt. That to these conceptions were
superadded many features really derived from the actions of aboriginal
races hiding before the destroying might of their invaders, and this not
merely in these islands, but in many parts of the world, has been, I
think, demonstrated by the labours of the gentleman whose theory I have so
often alluded to. But the point upon which it is desired to lay stress is
that the features derived from aboriginal races are only one amongst many
sources. Possibly they play an important part, but scarcely, I think, one
so important as Mr. MacRitchie would have us believe.

A PHILOLOGICAL ESSAY

Concerning the PYGMIES, THE CYNOCEPHALI, THE SATYRS and SPHINGES OF THE
ANCIENTS,

Wherein it will appear that they were all either APES or MONKEYS; and not
MEN, as formerly pretended.

By Edward Tyson M.D.

A Philological Essay Concerning the PYGMIES OF THE ANCIENTS.

Having had the Opportunity of Dissecting this remarkable Creature, which
not only in the _outward shape_ of the Body, but likewise in the structure
of many of the Inward Parts, so nearly resembles a Man, as plainly appears
by the _Anatomy_ I have here given of it, it suggested the Thought to me,
whether this sort of _Animal_, might not give the Foundation to the
Stories of the _Pygmies_ and afford an occasion not only to the _Poets_,
but _Historians_ too, of inventing the many Fables and wonderful and merry
Relations, that are transmitted down to us concerning them? I must
confess, I could never before entertain any other Opinion about them, but
that the whole was a _Fiction_: and as the first Account we have of them,
was from a _Poet_, so that they were only a Creature of the Brain,
produced by a warm and wanton Imagination, and that they never had any
Existence or Habitation elsewhere.

In this Opinion I was the more confirmed, because the most diligent
Enquiries of late into all the Parts of the inhabited World, could never
discover any such _Puny_ diminutive _Race_ of _Mankind_. That they should
be totally destroyed by the _Cranes_, their Enemies, and not a Straggler
here and there left remaining, was a Fate, that even those _Animals_ that
are constantly preyed upon by others, never undergo. Nothing therefore
appeared to me more Fabulous and Romantick, than their _History_, and the
Relations about them, that _Antiquity_ has delivered to us. And not only
_Strabo_ of old, but our greatest Men of Learning of late, have wholly
exploded them, as a mere _figment_; invented only to amuse, and divert the
Reader with the Comical Narration of their Atchievements, believing that
there were never any such Creatures in Nature.

This opinion had so fully obtained with me, that I never thought it worth
the Enquiry, how they came to invent such Extravagant Stories: Nor should
I now, but upon the Occasion of Dissecting this _Animal_: For observing
that 'tis call'd even to this day in the _Indian_ or _Malabar_ Language,
_Orang-Outang_, i.e. a _Man_ of the _Woods_, or _Wild-men_; and being
brought from _Africa_, that part of the World, where the _Pygmies_ are
said to inhabit; and it's present _Stature_ likewise tallying so well with
that of the _Pygmies_ of the Ancients; these Considerations put me upon
the search, to inform my self farther about them, and to examine, whether
I could meet with any thing that might illustrate their _History_. For I
thought it strange, that if the whole was but a meer Fiction, that so many
succeeding Generations should be so fond of preserving a _Story_, that had
no Foundation at all in Nature; and that the _Ancients_ should trouble
themselves so much about them. If therefore I can make out in this
_Essay_, that there were such _Animals_ as _Pygmies_; and that they were
not a _Race_ of _Men_, but _Apes_; and can discover the _Authors_, who
have forged all, or most of the idle Stories concerning them; and shew how
the Cheat in after Ages has been carried on, by embalming the Bodies of
_Apes_, then exposing them for the _Men_ of the Country, from whence they

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