Part 1 out of 13
"Prehistoric World: or Vanished Races"
by E. A. Allen
Processed by D.R. Thompson
THE PREHISTORIC WORLD:
By E. A. ALLEN,
Author of "The Golden Gems of Life."
Each of the following well-known Scholars reviewed one or more
Chapters, and made valuable suggestions:
C. C. ABBOTT, M.D.,
Author of "Primitive Industry."
Prof. F. W. PUTNAM,
Curator of Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology,
A. F. BANDELIER,
Explorer for Archaeological Institute of America,
author of "Archaeological Tour in Mexico."
Prof. CHARLES RAU,
Curator of Archaeological Department of Smithsonian Institution.
ALEXANDER WINCHELL, LL.D.,
Professor of Geology and Paleontology,
University of Michigan.
CYRUS THOMAS, PH.D.,
Of the Bureau of Ethnology.
G. F. WRIGHT,
Of the United States Geological Survey,
Professor in Theological Seminary, Oberlin, Ohio.
CENTRAL PUBLISHING HOUSE,
FERGUSON, ALLEN, AND RADER, 1885.
END OF TITLE***********************
The Prehistoric World: or, Vanished Races
by E. A. Allen
Processed by D.R. Thompson
In this volume the author has sought to lay before the reader a
description of life and times lying beyond the light of history.
This is indeed an extensive subject, and calls for some
explanation, both as to the general design of the work and what
steps have been taken to secure correct information.
History is a word of varied import. In general, when we talk
about history, we mean those accounts of past events, times, and
circumstances of which we have written records. Not necessarily
meaning alphabetical writing, because hieroglyphic records have
furnished much true history. Hieroglyphic writing, which long
preceded alphabetical writing, is itself a comparatively recent
art. In no country do we find any records carrying us further
back than a few thousand years before the Christian era. We have
every reason to believe that the historical part of man's life
on the globe is but an insignificant part of the whole.
This historic period is not the same in all countries. It varies
from a few centuries in our own country to a few thousands of
years in Oriental lands. In no country is there a hard and fast
line separating the historic period from the prehistoric. In the
dim perspective of years the light gradually fades away, the
mist grows thicker and thicker before us, and we at last find
ourselves face to face with the unknown past.
This extensive period of time is not, however, utterly lost to
us. We have simply to gather our information in some other way.
Enthusiastic explorers, digging beneath the ashes of Vesuvius,
have brought to light the remains of an entombed city. Of this
city we indeed have historic records, but even if all such
records had long since disappeared, we would gather much
information as to the nationality of the inhabitants, their
customs, and manners, by a simple inspection of the relics
themselves. Everywhere over the earth, entombed beneath the feet
of the living, or crumbling on the surface, are the few relics
of a past far antedating the relics of Pompeii. They are the
proofs positive that some people inhabited the land in far
Our object is to gather together the conclusions of the
scientific world as to primitive man. We wish to see how far
back in the geological history of the globe we can find evidence
of man's existence, and we desire to learn his surroundings and
the manner of his life. There can be no more important field
than for us to thus learn of the past. To read the story of
primitive man, to walk with him the earth in ages long ago, with
him to wage war on the huge animals of a previous epoch, to
recede with him before the relentless march of the ice of the
Glacial Age, to watch his advance in culture, to investigate
whether there are any races of men now living which are the
direct descendants of this primeval man.
The author makes no claims to original investigations.
He trusts, however, it will not be considered impertinent for a
mere loiterer in the vestibule of the temple of science to
attempt to lay before others the results of the investigations
of our eminent scholars. He has endeavored faithfully to perform
this task. As far as possible technical language has been
avoided. This is because he has written not for the
distinctively scientific men, but rather for the farmer, the
mechanic, and the man of business. Constant references are made
to the authorities consulted. The reader his a right to know who
vouches for the statements made in the text.
The pleasantest part of an author's duty is to return thanks for
assistance. After the manuscript was prepared with what care
could be bestowed on it, it was determined to submit it to some
of our best American scholars for criticism. Accordingly, each
of the gentlemen named on the title page were requested to
review one or more chapters. As far as possible, each one was
asked to review that chapter or chapters for which, either by
reason of the position they held, or the interest they were
known to take in such subjects, they would by common assent be
acknowledged as eminently fitted to sit in judgment. In justice
to them, it should he stated that they were not expected to
concern themselves with the literary merits or demerits of the
manuscript, but to criticise the scientific statements made
therein. To each and all of these gentlemen the author would
acknowledge his deep obligations.
We are indebted to Rev. J. P. MacLean, the well-known
archaeologist, both for many valuable suggestions, and for the
use of wood-cuts on pages 60, 138 and 396. We are also under
obligation to Rev. S. D. Peet, editor of the American
Antiquarian, for cuts illustrative of the effigy mounds of
Wisconsin. The officials of the Smithsonian Institution, and the
Bureau of Ethnology have our thanks for many cuts, for which
credit is given them throughout the work.
Finally, the author wishes to say that it was the intention to
make this work the joint production of the author and his
partner, Mr. S. C. Ferguson, but before any progress was made it
was deemed advisable to change the programme. While the literary
work has all been performed by the author, the many details
necessarily connected with the publication of a book were
attended to by Mr. Ferguson.
E. A. ALLEN.
Cincinnati, January 1, 1885.
END OF PREFACE**************************
The Prehistoric World: or, Vanished Races
by E. A. Allen
Processed by D.R. Thompson
Difficulties of the subject--Lesson to be learned--The pursuit
of knowledge--Recent advances--Prehistoric past of the Old
World--Of the New--Of Mexico and the South--The Isles of the
Pacific--Similar nature of the relics--The wonders of the
present age--History of popular opinion on this subject--
The teachings of the Bible--Nature of the evidence of man's
antiquity--The steps leading up to this belief--Geology--
Astronomy--Unfolding of life--Nature of our inquiry.
EARLY GEOLOGICAL PERIODS.
Necessity of a general acquaintance with the outlines of
Geology--A time in which no life was possible on the globe--
Length of this period--History of life commences at the close of
this period--On the formation of rocks--The record imperfect--
The three great periods in animal life on the globe--Paleozoic
Age--Animal and vegetable life of this period--Ideal scenes in
this period--The Mesozoic Age--Animal and vegetable life of this
period--Advance noted--Abundance of reptilian life--First
appearance of birds--Nature's methods of work--the Cenozoic Age
Geological outline--Sketch of the Eocene Age--Of the Miocene
Age--What is sufficient proof of the presence of man--
Discussion on the Thenay flints--The Pliocene Age--Animal and
vegetable life of this age--Was man present during this age?--
Discussion of this subject--Summing up of the evidence--
MEN OF THE RIVER DRIFT.
Beginning of the Glacial Age--Interglacial Age--Man living
in Europe during this age--Map of Europe--Proof of former
elevation of land--The animals living in Europe during this age
--Conclusions drawn from these different animals--The vegetation
of this period--Different climatic conditions of Europe during
the Glacial Age--Proofs of the Glacial Age--Extent of Glacial
Ice--Evidence of warm Interglacial Age--The primitive state of
man--Early English civilization--Views of Horace--Primitive man
destitute of metals--Order in which different materials were
used by man for weapons--Evidence from the River Somme--History
of Boucher De Perthes's investigations. Discussion of the
subject--Antiquity of these remains--Improvement during the
Paleolithic Age--Description of the flint implements--Other
countries where these implements are found--What race of men
were these tribes--The Canstadt race--Mr. Dawkins's views--When
did they first appear in Europe? The authorities on this
Other sources of information--History of cave explorations--The
formation of caves--Exploration in Kent's Cavern--Evidence of
two different races--The higher culture of the later race--
Evidence of prolonged time--Exploration of Robin Hood
Cave--Explorations in Valley of the River Meuse--M. Dupont's
conclusions--Explorations in the Valley of the Dordogne--The
station at Schussenreid--Cave-men not found south of the Alps--
Habitations of the Cave-men--Cave-men were hunters--methods of
cooking--Destitute of the potter's art--Their weapons--Clothing
--Their skill in drawing--Evidence of a government--Of a
religious belief--Race of the Cave-men--Distinet from the Men of
the Drift--Probable connection with the Eskimos.
ANTIQUITY OF THE PALEOLITHIC AGE.
Interest in the Antiquity of man--Connected with the Glacial
Age--The subject difficult--Proofs of a Glacial Age--State of
Greenland to-day--The Terminal Moraine--Appearance of the North
Atlantic--Interglacial Age--Causes of the Glacial Age--Croll's
Theory--Geographical causes--The two theories not antagonistic--
The date of the Glacial Age--Probable length of the Paleolithic
Age--Time Since the close of the Glacial Age--Summary
THE NEOLITHIC AGE IN EUROPE.
Close of the first cycle--Neolithic culture connected with the
present--No links between the two ages--Long lapse of time
between the two ages--Swiss lake villages--This form of villages
widely scattered--Irish cranogs--Fortified villages--Implements
and weapons of Neolithic times--Possessed of pottery--Neolithic
agriculture--Possessed of domestic animals--Danish shell-heaps--
Importance of flint--The art of navigation--Neolithic clothing--
Their mode of burial--The question of race--Possible remnants--
Connection with the Turanian race--Arrival of the Celts.
THE BRONZE AGE IN EUROPE.
Races of Men, like Individuals--Gradual change of Neolithic Age
to that of Bronze--The Aryan family--First Aryans Neolithic--
Origin of Bronze--How Great discoveries are made--Gold the first
metal--Copper abundant--No Copper Age--The discovery of Tin--
Explanation of an Alloy--Bronze, wherever found, the same
composition--What is meant by the Bronze Age--Knowledge in other
directions--Gradual Growth of Culture--Three Centers of Bronze
production--Habitations during the Bronze Age--The Bronze Ax--
Implements of Bronze--Personal ornaments--Ornaments not always
made of Bronze--Advance in Arts of living--Advance in
Agriculture--Warlike Weapons--How they worked Bronze--Advance in
Government--Trade in the Bronze Age--Religion of the Bronze Age
--Symbolical figures--Temples of the Bronze Age--Stonehenge.
THE IRON AGE IN EUROPE.
Bronze not the best metal--Difficulties attending the discovery
of Iron--Probable steps in this discovery--Where this discovery
was first made--Known in Ancient Egypt--How this knowledge would
spread--Iron would not drive out Bronze--The primitive Iron-
worker--The advance in government--Pottery and ornaments of the
Iron Age--Weapons of early Iron Age--The battle-field of
Tilfenau--Trade of early Iron Age--Invention of Money--Invention
of Alphabetic Writing--Invasion of the Germanic Tribes--The
cause of the Dark Ages--Connection of these three ages--
Necessity of believing in an Extended Past--Attempts to
determine the same--Tiniere Delta--Lake Bienne--British
Fen-lands--Maximum and Minimum Data--Mr. Geikie's conclusions--
The Isolation of the paleolithic Age.
EARLY MAN IN AMERICA.
Conflicting accounts of the American Aborigines--Recent
discoveries--Climate of California in Tertiary Times--Geological
changes near its close--Description of Table Mountain--Results
of the discoveries there--The Calaveras skull--Other relics--
Discussion of the question--Early Californians Neolithic--
Explanation of this--Date of the Pliocene Age--Other discoveries
bearing on the Antiquity of man--Dr. Koch's discovery--
Discoveries in the Loess of Nebraska--In Greene County, Ill.--
In Georgia--Difficulties in detecting a Paleolithic Age in this
country--Dr. Abbott's discoveries--Paleolithic Implements of the
Delaware--Age of the deposits--The race of Paleolithic man--
Ancestors of the Eskimos--Comparison of Paleolithic Age in this
country with that in Europe--Eskimos one of the oldest races in
THE MOUND BUILDERS.
Meaning of "Mound Builders"--Location of Mound Building tribes--
All Mounds not the work of men--Altar Mounds--Objects found on
the Altars--Altar Mounds possibly burial Mounds--Burial
Mounds--Mounds not the only Cemeteries of these tribes--Terraced
Mounds--Cahokia Mound--Historical notice of a group of Mounds--
The Etowal group--Signal Mounds--Effigy Mounds--How they
represented diiterent animals--Explanation of the Effigy Mounds
--Effigy Mounds in other localities--Inclosures of the Scioto
Valley--At Newark, Ohio--At Marietta, Ohio--Graded Ways--
Fortified Inclosures--Ft. Ancient, Ohio--Inclosures of Northern
Ohio--Works of unknown import--Ancient Canals in Missouri--
Implements and Weapons of Stone--Their knowledge of Copper--
Ancient mining--Ornamental pipes--Their knowledge of pottery--
Of Agriculture--Government and Religion--Hard to distinguish
them from the Indians.
THE PUEBLO COUNTRY.
Description of the Pueblo Country--Historical outline--
Description of Zuni--Definition of a Pueblo--Old Zuni--
Inscription Rock--Pueblo of Jemez--Historical notice of Pecos
--Description of the Moqui tribes--The Estufa--Description of
the San Juan country--Aztec Springs--In the Canyon of the
McElmo--The Ruins on the Rio Mancos--On Hovenweep Creek--
Description of a Cliff-house--Cliff Town--Cave Houses--Ruins on
the San Juan--Cave Town--The Significance of Cliff-houses--
Moqui traditions--Ruins in Northern New Mexico--Ruins in the
Chaco Canyon--Pueblo Bonito--Ruins in South-western Arizona--
The Rio Verde Valley--Casa Grande--Ruins on the Gila--Culture of
the Pueblo Tribes--Their Pottery--Superiority of the Ancient
THE PREHISTORIC AMERICANS.
Different views on this Subject--Modern System of Government--
Ancient System of Government--Tribal Government universal in
North America--The Indians not Wandering Nomads--Indian houses
Communal in character--Indian Methods of Defense--Mandan
Villages--Indians sometimes erected Mounds--Probable Government
of the Mound Builders--Traditions of the Mound Builders among
the Iroquois--Among the Delawares--Probable fate of the Mound
Builders--The Natchez Indians possibly a remnant of the Mound
Builders--Their early Traditions--Lines of resemblance between
the Pueblo Tribes and the Mound Builders--The origin of the
Indians--America Inhabited by the Indians from a very early
time--Classification of the Indian Tribes--Antiquity of the
THE NAHUA TRIBES.
Early Spanish discoveries in Mexico--The Nahua tribes defined--
Climate of Mexico--The Valley of Anahuac--Ruins at Tezcuco--The
Hill of Tezcocingo--Ruins at Teotihuacan--Ancient Tulla--Ruins
in the Province of Querataro--Casa Grandes in Chihuahua--Ancient
remains in Sinaloa--Fortified Hill of Quemada--The Pyramid of
Cholula--Fortified Hill at Xochicalco--Its probable use--Ruins
at Monte Alban--Ancient remains at Mitla--Mr. Bandelier's
investigations--Traditions in regard to Mitla--Ruins along the
Panuco River--Ruins in Vera Cruz--Pyramid of Papantla--Tusapan--
Character of Nahua Ruins.
THE MAYA TRIBES.
The geographical location of the Maya tribes--Description of
Copan--Statue at Copan--Altar at Copan--Ruins at Quiriga--
Patinamit--Utatlan--Description of Palenque--The Palace at
Palenque--The Temple of the Three Inscriptions--Temple of the
Beau-relief--Temple of the Cross--Temple of the Sun--Maler's
Temple of the Cross--Significance of the Palenque crosses--
Statue at Palenque--Other ruins in Tobasco and Chiapas--Ruins in
Yucatan--Uxmal--The Governor's House--The Nunnery--Room in
Nunnery--The Sculptured Facades--Temple at Uxmal--Kabah--Zayi--
Labna--Labphak--Chichen-Itza--The Nunnery--The Castillo--The
Gymnasium--M. Le Plongon's researches--The tradition of the
Three Brothers--Chaac-Mal--Antiquity of Chichen-Itza.
THE CULTURE OF THE CIVILIZED TRIBES.
Different views on this question--Reasons for the same--Their
architecture--Different styles of houses--The communal
house--The teepan--The teocalli--State of society indicated by
this architecture--The gens among the Mexicans--The phratry
among the Mexicans--The tribe--The powers and duties of the
council--The head chiefs of the tribe--The duties of the
"Chief-of-men"--The mistake of the Spaniards--The Confederacy--
The idea of property among the Mexicans--The ownership of land--
Their laws--Enforcement of the laws--Outline of the growth of
the Mexicans in power--Their tribute system--How collected--
Their system of trade--Slight knowledge of metallurgy--Religion
Human sacrifice--The system of Numeration--The calendar system--
The Calendar Stone--Picture-writing--Landa Alphabet--
First knowledge of Peru--Expeditions of Pizarro--Geography of
Peru--But a small part of it inhabitable--The tribes of ancient
Peru--How classified--Sources of our knowledge of Peru--
Garcillaso De La Vega--Origin of Peruvian civilization--The
Bolson of Cuzco--Historical outline--Their culture--Divided into
phratries and gentes--Government--Efforts to unite the various
tribes--Their system of colonies--The roads of the Incas--The
ruins of Chimu--The arts of the Chimu people--The manufacture of
Pottery--Excavation at Ancon--Ruins in the Huatica Valley--The
construction of a Huaca--The ruins at Pachacamac--The Valley of
the Canete--The Chincha Islands--Tiahuanuco--Carved gateway--The
Island of Titicaca--Chulpas--Aboriginal Cuzco--Temple of the
Sun--The Fortress--General remarks.
END OF CONTENTS*****************
The Prehistoric World: or, Vanished Races
by E. A. Allen
Processed by D.R. Thompson
LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS
1. Pyramids and Sphinx.
2. Paleozoic Forest.
3. The Pterodactyl.
5. The Labyrinthodon.
6. The Paleotherium.
7. Miocene Mammals.
8. Cut Bones of a Whale.
10. Map of Europe.
11. Scratched Stone.
12. Interglacial Bed.
13. Paleolithic Flints.
14. Flint Implements.
15. Section of Gravel-pit.
16. Paleolithic Flint, England.
17. Flint Flakes.
18. Spear-head Type.
19. Hatchet Type.
20. Neanderthal Man.
22. Spear-head, Lower Breccia, Kent's Cavern.
23. Spear-head, Cave-earth, Kent's Cavern.
24. Flake, Cave-earth, Kent's Cavern.
25. Harpoon, Pin, Awl, and Needle, Kent's Cavern.
26. Robin Hood Cave.
27. Horse incised on Piece of Rib.
28. Bone Implements, Cresswell Crags.
29. Bone Implements, Dordogne Caves.
30. Rock Shelter, Bruniquel.
31. Whale and Seal incised on Bone.
32. Cave-bear incised on Slate.
33. Glove incised on Bear's Tooth.
34. Reindeer grazing.
35. Group of Reindeers.
36. Man, and other Animals.
37. Fish incised on Bear's Tooth.
39. Mammoth, La Madeline Cave, France.
40. Reindeer carved on Dagger Handle.
41. Flower on Reindeer's Horn.
42. Ornamented Reindeer Horn, use unknown.
43. Eskimo Art.
44. The Mammoth.
45. Antarctic Ice-sheet.
46. Earth's Orbit.
47. Lake Village.
48. Foundation Lake Village.
49. Irish Cranogs.
50. Fortified Camp, Cissbury.
51. Neolithic Axes.
52. Neolithic Weapons.
53. Ax in Sheath.
54. Hafted Hatchet in Sheath.
55. Sheath with two Hatchets.
56. Chisels in Sheath.
57. Horn Hoe.
58. Miner's Pick.
59. Polishing Stone.
60. Neolithic Boat-making.
61. Neolithic Cloth.
62. Spindle Whorl.
63. Weaver's Comb.
64. Chambered Burial Mound.
65. Dolmen, England.
66. Dolmen, France.
67. Dolmen once covered with Earth.
69. Stone Circle, England.
70. Chambered Tomb, France.
71. Bronze Axes, first Form.
72. Bronze Axes, second Form.
73. Bronze Axes, third Form.
76. Bronze Knives.
77. Crescent, use unknown.
80. Bronze Pendants.
81. Necklace and Beads.
82. Ornamental Designs.
83. Bronze Sickle.
84. Clay Vessel and Support.
85. Bronze Weapons.
87. Burial Mound.
88. Avebury Restored.
89. Stonehenge Restored.
90. Ancient Tower, Scotland.
92. Gold Ornament.
94. Ornamental Sword-sheath.
95. Lance-head and Javelin.
97. Gallic Coins.
98. Imaginary Section of Table Mountain.
99. Calaveras Skull.
100. Implement found in Loess.
101. Spear-shaped Paleolithic Implement.
102. Paleolithic Implement, Argillite.
103. Stone Implement.
104. Mound Prairie.
105. Mound and Circle.
106. Altar Mound.
107. Plan and Section of Altar.
108. Burial Mounds.
109. Burial Mounds.
110. Grave Creek Mound.
111. Cross-section St. Louis Mound.
112. Terraced Mound.
113. Elevated Square, Marietta.
114. Cahokia Mound.
115. Temple Mound inclosed in a Circle.
116. Etowah Mound, Georgia.
117. Hill Mounds.
118. Miamisburg Mound.
119. Effigy Mounds.
120. Elephant Mound.
121. Emblematic Mounds.
122. Grazing Elks--Fox in the distance.
123. Eagle Mound.
124. Hawks and Buffaloes.
125. Goose and Duck.
127. Salamander and Muskrat.
128. Man-shaped Mound.
129. Emblematic Mound Inclosure.
130. Bird Mound surrounded by a Stone Circle.
131. The Big Serpent Mound.
132. The Alligator Mound.
133. High Bank Works.
134. Square and Circle Embankment.
135. Square inscribed in a Circle.
136. Circle and Ditch.
137. Mound Builders' Works, Newark, Ohio.
138. Eagle Mound.
139. Gateway of Octagon.
140. Observatory Mound.
141. Works at Marietta, Ohio.
142. Graded Way, Piketon, Ohio.
143. Fortified Hill, Hamilton, Ohio.
144. Fort Ancient, Ohio.
145. Fortified Headland.
146. Inclosure, Northern Ohio.
147. Square Inclosure, Northern Ohio.
148. Sacrificial Pentagon.
149. Festival Circle.
150. Crescent Works.
151. Triangular Works.
152. Arrow Points.
153. Ax found in a Mound.
154. Weapons of Stone from Tennessee.
155. Copper Ax.
156. Copper Bracelets.
157. Ancient Mine, Michigan.
158. Sculptured Face.
159. Face of a Female.
162. Birds on Pipes.
163. Group of Clay Vessels.
164. Bowls with Human Faces.
165. Water Cooler.
166. Pottery Vessels.
167. Agricultural Implements.
169. Map of the Pueblo Country.
171. Ground Plan.
172. End View.
173. Old Zuni.
174. Inscription Rock.
176. Watch Tower.
177. Ruins at Aztec Springs.
178. Ruins in the McElmo Canyon.
179. Tower on the Rio Mancos
180. Ruins in the Havenweep Canyon.
181. Two-storied House in the Mancos Canyon.
182. View of the Cliff in which the House is Situated.
183. Plan of the House.
184. Doorway of the House.
185. Room of the House.
186. Cliff Town, Rio Mancos.
187. Caves Used as Houses, Rio Mancos.
188. Ruins in the San Juan Canyon.
189. Cave Town.
190. Battle Rock, McElmo Canyon.
191. Restoration of Pueblo Bonito.
192. Plan of Pueblo Bonito.
193. Different Styles of Masonry.
194. Room in Pueblo Bonito.
195. Casa Grandes, on the Gila.
196. Indented and Corrugated Ware.
197. Painted Ware.
198. Long House of the Iroquois.
199. Stockaded Onondaga Village.
201. Mandan Village.
202. Ruins near the La Platte, Valley of the San Juan.
203. Stone Mask, found in Tennessee.
204. Map of Mexico.
205. Bas-relief Tezcuco.
206. Montezuma's Bath.
207. Aqueduct, Tezcocingo.
209. Casas Grandes.
211. Pyramid of Cholula.
213. Enlarged View of the Ruins.
214. Wall at Mitla.
215. Ornamentation at Mitla.
216. Hall at Mitla.
219. Map of Central America.
220. Ruins of Copan.
221. Statue, Copan.
222. Statue, Copan.
223. Hieroglyphics, Top of Altar.
224. Bas-relief, East Side of Altar.
225. Portrait, Copan.
220. Plan of Palenque.
227. General View of Palace, Palenque.
228. Cross-section of Palace, Palenque.
229. Trefoil Arch.
230. Entrance to Principal Court.
231. Stone Tablet.
232. Palace, Palenque.
233. Ruined Temple of the Three Tablets.
234. Elevation Temple of the Three Tablets.
235. The Beau-relief.
236. Temple of the Cross.
237. Tablet of the Cross.
238. The Sun.
239. Maler's Cross.
240. Statue, Palenque.
241. Bas-relief, on the left hand of the Altar of the Cross.
242. Plan of Uxmal.
243. The Governor's House, Uxmal.
244. Two-headed Monument, Uxmal.
245. End View.
246. Ground Plan.
247. Figure Over the Doorway.
248. Ornament Over the Doorway.
249. Elephant's Trunk.
250. Plan of Nunnery.
251. Room in Nunnery.
252. Facade, Southern Building.
253. Facade, Eastern Building.
254. Serpent Facade, Western Building.
255. Temple, Uxmal.
256. Arch, Kabah.
258. Plan of Zayi.
259. Gateway at Labna.
260. Castillo, Chichen-Itza.
261. Gymnasium at Chichen-Itza.
263. Building at end of Gymnasium.
264. Painted Stucco Work.
265. Queen Consulting the H-men.
267. Bearded Itza.
268. Arizona Ruin.
269. Tribute Sheet.
270. Yucatan Axes.
271. Carpenter's Ax.
272. Mexican Carpenter.
273. Copper Tool.
275. Mexican Numeration Signs.
276. Maya and Mexican Day Signs.
277. Maya Months.
278. Calendar Stone.
279. Sign of Rain.
280. Sign of a Cycle.
281. Indian Picture-writing.
284. Historical Sheet.
285. Chilapi Tribute.
287. Migration Chart.
288. Landa Alphabet.
289. Maya T.
290. Maya Picture-writing.
291. Hieroglyphics, Tablet of the Cross.
292. Map of Peru.
293. Fortress, Huatica Valley.
294. Ruins at Pachacamac.
295. Relics from Guano Deposits.
296. Burial Towers.
298. Section of Palace Walls.
299. Ornamentation on Walls.
300 Adobe Ornament.
301 Gold and Silver Vases.
302. Bronze Knives and Tweezers.
304. Water-jars from Ancon.
305. Cloth Found in Grave.
306. Wall in Huatica Valley.
307. Burial Mound, or Huaca.
308. Fortress Mound.
309. Temple Wall.
310. Fortress, Huatica Valley.
311. General View of Pachacamac.
312. View of the Temple.
313. Relics from Graves at Pachacamac.
314. Relics found Buried in Guano Deposits.
315. Prehistoric Pottery-ware.
316. Silver Cylinder-head.
317. Terrace Wall, Tiahuanuco.
318. Method of Joining Stones, Tiahuanuco.
319. Gateway, Tiahuacuno.
320. Ruins on the Island of Titicaca.
321. Ruins, Island of Coati.
322. Burial Tower.
323. Terrace Wall at Cuzco.
324. Temple of the Sun.
325. Fortress Wall.
326. Section Fortress Wall.
1. Cliff Houses, Rio Mancos Canyon.
2. Engraved Title Page.
3. Paleozoic Forest.
4. Rock Shelter at Bruniquel.
5. Antarctic Ice Sheet.
6. Lake Village, Switzerland.
7. Pueblo of Zuny.
8. Cliff-town, Rio Mancos.
9. Restoration of Pueblo Bonito.
10. Painted Pueblo Pottery.
11. Pyramid of Cholula.
12. Copan Statue.
13. General View of Palace.
14. Bas-relief on the left-hand of the Altar of the Cross.
15. Plan of Uxmal.
16. The Governor's House, Uxmal.
17. Room in Nunnery.
19. Castillo, Chichen-Itza.
20. Tribute Sheet.
22. Calendar Stone.
23. Historical Sheet.
END OF LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS****************
The Prehistoric World: or, Vanished Races
by E. A. Allen
Processed by D.R. Thompson
THE PREHISTORIC WORLD--Chapter I
Thou unrelenting Past!
Strong are the barriers round thy dark domain--
And fetters, sure and fast,
Hold all that enter thy unbreathing reign.
Far in thy realm, withdrawn,
Old empires sit in sullenness and gloom;
And glorious ages, gone,
Lie deep within the shadow of thy womb.
Full many a mighty name
Lurks in thy depths, unuttered, unrevered:
With thee are silent fame,
Forgotten arts, and wisdom disappeared.
W. C. BRYANT
Difficulties of the subject--Lesson to be learned--The pursuit
of knowledge--Recent Advances--Prehistoric past of the Old
World--Of the New--Of Mexico and the South--The Isles of the
Pacific--Similar nature of the relics--The wonders of the
present age--History of popular Opinion on this subject--The
teachings of the Bible--Nature of the evidence of man's
antiquity--Geology--Astronomy--Unfolding of life--Nature of
Who can read the book of the past? Who can tell us the story of
Creation's morn? It is, not written in history, neither does it
live in tradition. There is mystery here; but it is hid by the
darkness of bygone ages. There is a true history here, but we
have not learned well the alphabet used. Here are doubtless
wondrous scenes; but our stand-point is removed by time so vast,
the mist of years is so thick before us, that only the ruder
outlines can be determined. The delicate tracery, the body of
the picture, are hidden from our eye. The question as to the
antiquity and primitive history of man, is full of interest in
proportion as the solution is beset with difficulties. We
question the past; but only here and there a response is heard.
Surely bold is he who would attempt, from the few data at hand,
to reconstruct the history of times and people so far removed.
We quickly become convinced that many centuries, and tens of
centuries, have rolled away since man's first appearance on the
earth. We become impressed with the fact, "that multitudes of
people have moved over the surface of the Earth, and sunk into
the night of oblivion, without leaving a trace of their
existence: without a memorial through which we might have at
least learned their names."<1>
To think of ourselves, is to imagine for our own nation an
immortality. We are so great, so strong, surely nothing can move
us. Let us learn humility from the past: and when, here and
there, we come upon some reminder of a vanished people, trace
the proofs of a teeming population in ancient times, and recover
somewhat of a history, as true and touching as any that poets
sing, let us recognize the fact, that nations as well as
individuals pass away and are forgotten.
The past guards its secret well. To learn of it we must seek new
methods of inquiry. Discouraged by the difficulties in the way,
many have supposed it hidden from the present by a veil which
only thickens as time passes. In the remains of prehistoric
times they have failed to recognize the pages of history.
They saw only monuments of ancient skill and perseverance:
interesting sketches, not historical portraits. Some writers
have held that we must give up the story of the past, "whether
fact or chronology, doctrine or mythology--whether in Europe,
Asia, Africa, or America--at Thebes, or Palenque--on Lycian
shore, or Salisbury plain--lost is lost and gone is gone for
evermore." Such is the lament of a gifted writer,<2> amongst the
first to ponder over the mysteries of the past. At the present
day, with better means at hand, a more hopeful view is taken.
But here a caution is necessary; for, in attempting to
reconstruct the history of primitive times, such is the interest
which it inspires, that many allow imagination to usurp the
place of research, and write in terms too glowing
The human mind is sleepless in the pursuit of knowledge. It is
ever seeking new fields of conquest. It must advance: with it,
standing still is the precursor of defeat. If necessary it
invents new methods of attack, and rests not until it gains its
objective point, or demonstrates the hopelessness of its quest.
The world needs but be informed that on a given point knowledge
is dim and uncertain, when there are found earnest minds
applying to the solution of the mystery all the energies of
their natures. All the resources of science are brought to bear;
every department of knowledge is made to contribute of its
store: and soon a mass of facts is established and a new science
is added to the department of human knowledge.
Thus, with our knowledge of prehistoric times, what so seemingly
vain as to attempt to roll back the flight of time, and learn
the condition of primeval man? All the light of ancient history
makes but little impression on the night of time. By its aid we
can but dimly see the outlines of the fortieth century back;
beyond is gloom soon lost in night. But a few short years ago,
men did not think it possible to gain further information.
With the materials at hand this could not be done. The triumph
of the intellect was simply delayed, not hopelessly repulsed.
Geology was but just beginning to make good its claim to a place
among the sciences. This unfolded to man the physical history of
the world as read from the rocks, and deals with times so vast
and profound that we speak no longer of years, but of ages.
And with the aid of Geology grand secrets were wrung from the
past, and new light was thrown on the manners and customs of
primitive man. Thus the foundation for still another science was
laid, called Archaeology, or the science of Human Antiquities.
These two sister sciences are the keys by whose aid we have not
only acquired much information of a past that seemed a hopeless
enigma--but, as Columbus on the waste of waters could perceive
traces of land as yet invisible, so can the present seekers
after knowledge trace the signs of a satisfactory solution of
many of the great questions relating to the origin and history
of the vanished races of mankind.
In whatever land we commence our investigations, we quickly come
upon the evidences of an ancient life long antedating all
historical information. Ancient Egypt has been a fruitful theme
for the antiquarians pen. The traveler has moralized over the
ruins of her past greatness, and many pointed illustrations of
national growth and decay have been drawn from her history.
Here was the seat of an ancient civilization, which was in the
zenith of its power many centuries before Christ. The changes
that have passed over the earth since that time are far more
wonderful than any ascribed to the wand of the magician.
Nations have come and gone, and the land of the Pharaohs has
become an inheritance for strangers; new sciences have enriched
human life, and the fair structure of modern civilization has
arisen on the ruins of the past. Many centuries, with their
burden of human hopes and fears, have sped away into the past,
since "Hundred-gated Thebes" sheltered her teeming population,
where now are but a mournful group of ruins. Yet to-day, far
below the remorseless sands of her desert, we find the rude
flint-flakes that require us to carry back the time of man's
first appearance in Egypt to a past so remote that her stately
ruins become a thing of yesterday in comparison to them.
In the New World, mysterious mounds and gigantic earth-works
arrest our attention. Here we find deserted mines, and there we
can trace the sites of ancient camps and fortifications.
The Indians of the prairies seem to be intruders on a fairer
civilization. We find here evidences of a teeming population.
In the presence of their imposing ruins, we can not think that
nomadic savages built them. They give evidences rather of a
people having fixed habitations and seem to imply the possession
of a higher civilization than that of the Indians.
These questions demand solution; but how shall we solve the
problem? Save here and there a deserted camp, or a burial mound,
containing perhaps articles of use or adornment, all traces have
vanished. Their earth-works and mounds are being rapidly leveled
by the plow of modern times, and the scholar of the future can
only learn from books of their mysterious builders. In Mexico,
and farther south, we find the ruins of great cities. To the
student of antiquity, these far surpass in interest the ruined
cities of the Nile or Euphrates valley. Babylon of old, with its
walls, towers, and pleasure resorts, was indeed wonderful.
In our own land cities, if not as ancient, yet fallen in more
picturesque ruin, reward the labors of the explorer.
Uxmal, Copan, and Palenque, invite our attention. Here are
hieroglyphics in abundance, but no Rosetta Stone supplies the
key by whose aid a Champollion can unravel the mystery.
The luxuriant vegetative growth of the tropics, with its fierce
storms, is every year hastening the obliteration of these ruins,
and we must improve the time well, if we would learn from them
what they have to say of the past.
The isles of the Pacific give evidence that, long before the
dawn of authentic history, man lived there. Indeed, as the
islands which gem that ocean, from their configuration and
position, seem to be but the elevated plateaus and mountain
peaks of a continent that has gone down beneath the blue wave of
the Pacific, so, throughout Polynesia can be traced the
fragmentary remains of a civilization, the greater portion of
which has been completely buried by the waters of oblivion,
leaving only here and there a trace to reconstruct, if we can,
the entire structure.
The earliest remains of man are very similar in all lands.
They consist of weapons of war and of the chase, implements of
domestic use, and articles of personal adornment. Few and simple
as they are, they are capable of imparting useful information as
to early times. By their aid we become eye-witnesses of the
daily life of primitive man. We learn that though lacking in
almost every thing we consider essential for comfort and
happiness, yet they were actuated by much the same hopes and
fears as the men of the present age. The great burden of life
was the same then as now. There was the same round of daily
labor made necessary by the same ceaseless struggle for
existence. Rude forts and warlike implements show there was the
same encroachment of the strong on the weak as now.
This is a wonderful age in many respects. In none, however, more
wonderful than in the wide-spread diffusion of knowledge.
The ordinary people now understand more of nature's secrets than
the wise men of old. They are to-day interested in researches
that a former generation would have relegated to the scholar and
the man of leisure. No department of knowledge is retained for
the researches of a favored few. The farmer, the mechanic, and
the man of business are alike interested in a knowledge of
prehistoric times. The rude implements of the past appeal to the
curiosity of all. We arise from a study of the past with clearer
ideas of man's destiny. Impressed with the great advancement in
man's condition from the rude savagery of the drift, to the
enlightened civilization of to-day, what may we not hope the
advancement will be during the countless ages we believe a
beneficent Providence has in store for his creature, man?
A history of the popular opinion of the antiquity of man is not
only of interest, but should teach a lesson to all who think
others are wrong because not holding the same views as they do.
Hardly fifty years have passed since scientific men began to
attribute to the human race an antiquity more remote than that
assigned them by history and tradition. At first these views met
with general opposition, much as did the theory of the present
system of astronomy when it was first proclaimed. We laugh now
at the ignorant fear's and prejudices used to combat both.
It was claimed that the Bible taught that man had lived on the
globe scarcely six thousand years. The Bible is the book to
which the Anglo-Saxon mind clings with the greatest reverence.
The memories of childhood are associated with its pages, and its
very appearance recalls the prayers of long ago. It is not
strange then that the Christian world guards with jealous care
against any thing which may be thought to weaken the force of
But it is human nature to go to extremes: and, when we give our
support to one way of thinking, we find it difficult to be
patient with those of the contrary opinion.
Now, the researches of some of the most eminent men and learned
divines have amply shown, that there are no data given in the
Scriptures on which to base an estimate as to the antiquity of
man. Happily the Christian mind no longer shrinks from the
conclusions reached by the scientist: and, indeed, it is the
contemplation of the stupendous periods of Geological times, and
the infinite greatness of the works of Creation as disclosed by
Astronomy, with the extreme lowness of man's first condition as
made evident by Archaeology, that lend new force to the words,
"What is man, that thou art mindful of him!"
The evidences on which we predicate an extreme antiquity for man
are necessarily cumulative. It is not from one source alone that
we obtain information, but from many. Eminent men in nearly
every department of knowledge have lent their aid to the
elucidation of this subject. It can only be understood by those
who will fairly weigh the facts that modern discoveries have
unrolled before their eyes. There are many who have not done
this, and are consequently unable to project their mental vision
so far back into the very night of time, as is now demanded for
the beginning of man's first appearance on the earth.
And, indeed, so enormously has this period been extended--so far
back does it require us to go--that even the most enlightened
investigator may well recoil in dismay when he first perceives
the almost infinite lapse of years that are required by his
calculation since the creation of man.
At this day the scholar must be ready to explain the steps by
which he reaches his conclusions. Not necessarily explaining the
minutiae of his journey hither, but the main outlines of his
course. This seems to call for a slight outline of Geology.
The animal and vegetable tribes which have come and gone upon
the earth, following each other like the shadows of passing
clouds on a Summer's day, have left their remains in the rocks
which at that time were forming. A close investigation of these
remains shows that they form the record book of nature, wherein
we are permitted to read somewhat of her secrets. This had long
been a sealed book to man; but science, as we have seen,
constantly extending her domain, at length taught him
And the Geologist now unfolds the past age of our world with a
variety of detail, and a certainty of conclusion well calculated
to inspire us with grateful admiration.
It is no longer a question that many ages must have rolled away,
during which our world was totally unfit for life of any kind,
either animal or vegetable.
The nebular theory of Laplace, as modified by the modern
astronomers, so satisfactorily explains many of the phenomena of
the solar system, that it takes rank almost as a demonstrated
fact. According to the terms of this theory, our Earth, now so
dependent on the sun for light and warmth, was itself a glowing
orb, and as a bright star radiated its light and heat into
space. Grand conception, and probably true. It is now useless to
speculate as to how many cycles of almost infinite years had
begun and ended, before Earth's fading fires gave notice that
they must soon expire in night.
The stages through which the Earth passed in turn await the sun,
save that there is no further beneficent luminary to give him
light and heat: when time shall have quenched his fiery glow,
death and night shall reign supreme, where now is life
Time is long, and nature never hurries. She builds for infinite
years, and recks not the time of building. The human mind is far
too feeble to comprehend the duration of time that sped away and
was gone ere the slowly falling temperature of the Earth
admitted the formation of a crust over her surface. When that
came, the first great scene was closed. The star had expired,
the planet rolled in her annual course around the still glowing
central sun. Now came the formative age of the world, when the
great continents were outlined.
The atmosphere gradually freed itself from its weight of water-
vapor, the rains descended, and the ocean took form and contour.
We are concerned only with the outlines of Geology, not with its
details. It is full of the most interesting facts, but is
foreign to our present purpose. We will only say, there is a
marked progression in the scale and importance of life forms.
The lower forms of animals appear first to be followed in time
by the higher. It is true that some forms have survived through
all the changes of Geological time to the present: yet, speaking
generally, some forms of life are peculiar to each age, and the
general phase of animal life is different with each period.
They thus form epochs in the history of the world as read from
the rocks, and though the beginning and ending of each age may
blend by insensible gradations with that of the preceding and
following, yet, taken as a whole, we observe in each such
singularities of form and structure as to give name to each
In the fullness of time man appears; and it is our pleasant task
to trace the evidence of his primitive state, his growth in
culture, and his advancement made before the dawn of history.
Our inquiry, then, is as to his prehistoric state. We use this
term in the same sense as Dr. Wilson uses it: that is, to
express the whole period disclosed to us by means of
archaeological evidence, as distinguished from what is known
through historical records. We can not doubt but that this
includes by far the largest portion of man's existence. The time
embraced within historical records, though different in
different portions of the world, is but a brief period in
comparison to the duration of time since he first went forth to
possess the Earth. If we can make plain to our readers that man
has lived in the world an extremely long time, going back indeed
to a former Geological age--that his first state was very low
and rude--that he has risen to his present high estate by means
of his own exertions continued through long ages--and from this
form a prophecy of a golden age to come in the yet distant
future, we shall feel that we have not written in vain.
Illustration of The Sphinx.------------
(1) Von Hellwald: "Smithsonian Report," 1866.
(3) Lubbock: "Prehistoric Times," p. 2.
END OF CHAPTER I******************
The Prehistoric World: or, Vanished Races
by E. A. Allen
Processed by D.R. Thompson
EARLY GEOLOGICAL PERIODS.<1>
Necessity of a general acquaintance with the outlines of
Geology--A time in which there was no life possible on the
globe--Length of this period--On the formation of rocks--The
record imperfect--The three great periods in animal life on the
globe--Paleozoic age--Animal and vegetable life of this period--
The Mesozoic age--Animal and vegetable life of this period--
Advance noted--Abundance of reptilian life--First appearance of
birds--Nature's methods of work--The Cenozoic age--Geological
outline--Sketch of the Eocene age--Of the Miocene age--What is
sufficient proof of the presence of man--Discussion of the
Thenay flints--The Pliocene age--Animal and vegetable life of
this age--Was man living during this age?--Discussion of this
subject--Summing up the evidence--Conclusion.
For a clear understanding of questions relating to early man, a
more or less extensive acquaintance with Geology is required.
This is by no means a difficult task to accomplish. What so
interesting as to understand at least the outlines of the
history of life on the globe? To see how, following a definite
plan, the vast continents have grown to their present size and
form; to see how animal and vegetable life have evolved
successively higher and higher forms; to see where in this
wondrous drama of creation, this strange unfolding of life, the
first faint, indecisive traces of man's presence are to be
found; to learn what great changes in climate, in Geogony, and
in life, had occurred before man's appearance, let us pass in
brief review the history of early geological periods.
As we have already stated, there must have been a very long
period of time during which no life was possible on the globe.
Of this era we know but little; for we find no strata of rocks
of an earlier date than we know life, in its simplest forms, to
have existed.<2> Still we are not less confident of the
existence of this era, and the mind can dimly comprehend the
scene, when a nearly shoreless ocean surged around the globe.<3>
As to the extent of time during which there was no life, we have
no means of determining. That it was almost infinitely long is
made apparent by the researches of eminent scholars on the
cooling of lava. Toward the close of this extended period of
time faint traces of life appear. Not life as we are apt to
think of it. No nodding flowers were kissed by the sunshine of
this early time. The earliest forms of flowerless plants, such
as sea-weeds, and in dry places possibly lichens covering the
rocks, were the highest forms of vegetable life. Animal life, if
present, for the fact is denied by some, occurs in the very
lowest form, merely structureless bodies, with no especial
organs of sense, or nutrition: and their motion consisting
simply in protruding and withdrawing hair-like processes.<4>
Such was the beginning of life. This vast period of time, which
includes the beginning, is known among geologists as
From the close of this age, the history of life properly
commences. It might be well to explain the means which the
geologist uses to interpret the history of the globe. It is now
understood that the forces of nature have always produced the
same results as they do now. From the very earliest time to the
present, rocks have been forming. There, where conditions were
favorable, great beds of limestone, formed from shells and
corals, ground up by the action of the sea<5>--in other places,
massive beds of sandstone or of sand, afterward consolidated
into sandstone--were depositing. On the land surface, in places,
great beds of vegetable debris were being converted into
coal. Now we can easily see how the remains of organic bodies,
growing at the time of the formation of these beds, should be
preserved in a fossil form. Limestone rocks are thickly studded
in places with all sorts of marine formations. Coal fields
reveal wonders of early vegetative growth. From sandstone rocks,
and shaly beds, we learn strange stories of animal life at the
time they were forming. From a careful study of these remains
together with the formation in which they occur, not only in one
locality but all over the earth, geologists have gradually
unfolded the history of life on the globe. It is admitted that,
at best, our knowledge in that direction is fragmentary.
This arises from errors in observation as well as that fossil
formations are rare, or at least localities where they are known
to exist are but few. So our knowledge of the past is as if we
were examining some record from which pages, chapters, and even
volumes, have been extracted.
Illustration of Paleozoic Forest---------------
In consequence of this imperfect record we can not, as yet,
trace a gradual successive growth from the low forms of animal
and plant, life, that characterized the closing period of
Archean time, to the highly organized types of the present.
The record suddenly ceases and when we again pick up the thread
we are surrounded by more advanced types, higher forms of life.
Though we may hope that future discoveries will do much toward
completing the records, we can not hope that they will ever
really be perfected. So, from our present stand-point, the
history of life on the globe falls naturally into three great
divisions.<6> This is no more than we might expect, when we
reflect that nature's laws are universal in their action, and
that the world, as a whole, has been subjected to the same set
The period following on after Archean time is called, by
geologists, Paleozoic time.
During the long course of time embraced in this age, the forms
of life present wide differences from those of
This period produced the great beds of coal we use to-day.
But the vegetation of the coal period would present strange
features to our eyes. The vegetation commenced with the lowest
orders of flowerless plants, such as sea-weeds; but, before it
was brought to a close, there was a wonderful variety and
richness of plants of the flowerless or Cryptogamic division.
In some of the warmest portions of the globe, we have to-day
tree-ferns growing four or five feet high. During the closing
part of the Paleozoic time, there were growing all over the
temperate zone great tree-ferns thirty feet or so in height.
Some varieties of rushes in our marshes, a foot or two in
height, had representatives in the marshes of the coal period
standing thirty feet high, and having woody trunks.<7> Near the
close of the Paleozoic time, vegetation assumed a higher form of
life. Flowering plants are represented. Pines were growing in
the coal measures.
In animal life a similar advance is noted. The class of animals
having no backbone, or invertebrate animals, were largely
represented. But, toward the close of the Paleozoic time, we
meet with representatives of the backbone family. The waters
swarmed with fishes.<8> Besides these, there were amphibians;
<9> and reptiles in the closing portions.<10>
Illustration of The Pterodactyl.--------------
Thus we see what a great advance was made in life during this
period. The forms of life during the early stages of this age
were inferior in this, also, that they were all water
species.<11> But, before it closes, we have a rich and varied
terrestrial vegetation, and also air-breathing animals.
The class Mammalia, to which man belongs, had no representative
on the earth during the extended Paleozoic time.
We can easily see, from the foregoing, how appropriately this
period has been named that of old life forms. In imagination we
can recall a scene of this old age. The air is sultry and full
of vapors. The soil seems hot and steaming. This is a veritable
forest, but we see none of the beautiful flowers which we
associate with tropical vegetation to-day. In the branches of
the graceful tree-ferns, we will look in vain for birds.
They were yet far in the future. Neither were there any of the
higher orders of animals present. Not a single representative of
the great class of mammals enlivened the depths of the forest.
There were fishes in the waters, but not the fishes of to-day.
Some true reptiles and amphibians disported themselves in swampy
jungles, but they were unimportant. Almost the only sound to
break the stillness, was the hum of marsh-loving insects, the
whistling of the wind, and the roar of the tempests, which we
may well believe raged with the more than tropic severity of
The time at last came for the dawning of a new era. Vast changes
had been taking place in the geography of both continents. The
region to the south-west of the Green Mountains was upturned.
The Alleghany Mountains were formed, and the region east of the
Mississippi River became part of the stable land of the
continent.<13> In Europe, nearly as great changes occurred.
The conditions of life must have been greatly modified by these
geographical changes. The life-forms bear testimony to this
changed condition. Old forms die away, and are succeeded by
those approaching more nearly our own times. The name of this
period is the Mesozoic time, or the period of middle life
forms.<14> It is instructive to notice the steady advance in the
type of life, both animal and vegetable. The abundant flowerless
vegetation of the coal formation of the preceding epoch dwindles
away. But the flowering trees increase in number and importance
until, in the closing period of Mesozoic time, we have trees
with deciduous leaves. A great many of our forest trees had
representatives in the forests of that epoch.
Illustration of Ichthyosauri.-----------
Palms and species like the big tree of California were growing
side by side with species akin to our own common trees. But in
the animal world there were many strange forms. This was the age
of reptiles. They domineered on the land, in the air, and in the
sea. On the land there stalked huge reptiles fifty and sixty
feet long, and, when standing erect, at least thirty feet
high.<15> Some of these huge creatures were carnivorous, living
on other animals. Others fed on the foliage of trees. In the
air, huge reptilian bats, veritable flying dragons with a spread
of wings from ten to twenty feet, disported themselves.<16>
In the sea there swam great reptilian whales, seals, and
walruses.<17> There was a marvelous abundance of reptilian life.
At the present day, there are not more than six species of
reptiles in the whole world having a length of over fifteen
feet, and not more than eighteen species exceeding ten feet in
length. But from one limited locality, representing but one era
of this age in England, there have been discovered four or five
species of carnivorous reptiles twenty to fifty feet long, ten
or twelve species of crocodiles, lizards, and swimming reptiles
from ten to sixty feet long--besides multitudes of great flying
reptiles and turtles. Doubtless similar scenes of animal life
were everywhere represented.
Illustration of The Labyrinthodon.--------
Birds made their first appearance during the Mesozoic time, and
here we obtain a clear view of nature's methods of work.
There is no longer a doubt but that the first birds were simply
modified reptiles. The first bird had a long jointed tail, and a
bill well supplied with formidable teeth.<18> It was during this
period that the first representative of the class Mammalia, to
which man belongs, appears.<19> It is in the rocks of this era
that we meet with remains of marsupials, the order to which
opossums belong. This is the lowest of the Mammalian class.
To the class Mammalia belong the most highly organized animals.
They have been the ruling animals since the close of Mesozoic
time. We must now watch their development with especial care.
For this brief review, as far as it has gone, has shown a steady
and gradual progress in life forms, the lower invariably
preceding the higher. We therefore feel that it will be vain to
seek for any trace of man until we find undoubted proofs of the
existence of all the forms of animals below him. The last great
division of time is called Cenozoic.<20> This means new life
forms. In this age, the forms of life are much nearer our own.
As it was some time during this epoch when man makes his
appearance, we deem it best to go into more detail, and give the
subdivisions of this period. It has been amply sufficient to
give simply the outlines of the other periods. In order to fix
more clearly the sequence of life, we will give an outline
showing the periods we have reviewed, and also the subdivisions
of the Cenozoic time, which we are now to examine with
The Beginning: Includes the long lapse of time when the globe
could not support life, but towards its close faint traces of
life, both animal and vegetable appeared.
The Period of Old Life Forms: Forests of flowerless trees;
but pines grew in the coal measures. Animal life largely
invertebrate; but amphibians and reptiles among the vertebrate
appear at the close.
The Period of Middle Life Forms: Flowering trees increasing in
number and importance. Deciduous trees make their appearance.
Animal life largely reptilian. The class Mammalia represented by
Tertiary, or Age of Mammals: Eocene, Miocene, Pliocene.
Quarternary, or Age of Man: Glacial or Pleistocene, Recent.
At the close of the Mesozoic time, great elevations of land took
place in both America and Europe, especially in the northern
portions.<21> This could not fail to have a great effect on
life, both animal and vegetable.
During the Eocene, or first division of the Tertiary Age, we
have simply to note the steady progress of life. There were
forests of species of oaks, poplars, maples, hickories, and
other common trees, and others now found only in tropical
regions. Palm trees were growing in the upper Missouri region of
the United States. And England was decidedly a land of Palms, as
no less than thirteen species are known to have been growing
there. Cypresses, yews, and pines graced the scene.<22>
Our special interest centers, however, in the mammals of
Illustration of The Paleotherium.--------
In the preceding epoch marsupials only were represented. But in
beds of the middle and closing portions of the Eocene period we
meet with a sudden increase of Mammalian life. Whale-like
animals were especially abundant in the seas; and on our Western
plains were animals like the tapirs of India, and rhinoceros-
like animals as large as elephants<23> but having no trunks, and
diminutive little animals not larger than foxes, from which have
come our horses. Europe also had a varied Mammalian fauna.
There were numerous hog-like animals. Animals, like the tapirs
of tropical Asia and America, wandered in the forests and on the
banks of the rivers. Herds of horse-like animals, about the size
of Shetland ponies, fed on the meadows.<24> Animals that chew
the cud were present, or at least had near representatives.<25>
Among the flesh-eating animals were creatures resembling foxes,
wolverines, and hyenas.<26> This shows what a great advance had
been made. But, besides all these, we are here presented with
representatives of the order of Quadrumana, or four-handed
animals. Several genera of lemurs are found in both America
Now the Quadrumana are the order below man. Therefore it seems
that in the Eocene period, all the forms of life below
man are represented. The time seems to be at hand when we can
look, with some confidence, for traces of the presence of man
himself. We must therefore be more cautious in
The epoch following on after the Eocene is designated as the
Miocene. We must remember that, though recent in a geological
sense, yet it is immensely remote when measured by the standard
of years. We must inquire into all the surroundings of this far
away time. The geographical features must have been widely
different from the present.
In the first place, the elevation of land to the north must have
been sufficient to have connected the land areas of the Northern
Hemisphere--North America, with Asia<27> and Greenland; and this
latter country must have been united with Iceland, and, through
the British Islands, with Europe. But, to compensate for this
land mass to the north, large portions of Central and Southern
Europe were beneath the waves.<28> The proof of this extended
mass of land is to be found in the wide distribution of similar
animals and plants in the Miocene time. All the chief botanists
are agreed that the north Polar region was the center from which
plants peculiar to the Eocene and Miocene epochs spread into
both Europe and America.<29> We may mention that the famous big
trees of California are simply remnants of a wide-spread growth
of these trees in Miocene times. They can be found in a fossil
state at various places in British America, in Greenland, and in
Europe. They are supposed to have originated somewhere in the
north, and spread by these land connections we have mentioned
into both Europe and America. But this is not the only tree that
grew in the Miocene forests of both continents. The magnolia,
tulip-tree, and swamp cypress are other instances.<30>
Eleven species, growing in the Rocky Mountain regions in Rocene
times, found their way to Europe in the Miocene times,<31>
driving before them the plants of a tropical growth that had
hitherto flourished in England. Now this implies land connection
between the two continents. Furthermore, animals both large and
small are found common to the two countries.<32> The climate
over what is now the North Temperate Zone, and even further.
north, must have been delightful. There is ample testimony to
this effect in the rich vegetative remains over wide areas.
In Spitzbergen, within twelve degrees of the pole, where now a
dwarf willow and a few herbaceous plants form the only
vegetation, and the ground is most of the time covered with snow
and ice, there were growing, in Miocene times, no less than
ninety-five species of trees, including yews, hazels, elders,
beech, elms, and others.<33> But it is in the Miocene forests of
the continent of Europe where we meet with evidence of a
singularly mild climate.
There were at least eleven species of palms growing in
Switzerland; and one variety of them grew as far north as
We can not give a list of all the species. On the one hand,
there were elms, willows, poplars, oaks, and beeches, thus far
similar to the forest growth of temperate regions. Mingled with
these were forests of trees like the tulip-tree, swamp cypress,
and liquid amber or sweet gum of the southern part of the United
States--plants whose home is in the warm and moist regions of
the earth. But there were also representatives of the tropical
regions--such as fig-trees, cinnamon-trees, and camphor-trees:
these are found growing now in tropical countries. Fruit-trees
of the cherry, plum, and almond species were also to be seen.
Prof. Heer points out how all this should convince us that a
large part of Europe, in the Miocene Age, possessed a climate
not unlike that of the Madeira or Canary Islands to-day.
He calls especial attention to the fact that these trees were
nearly all of evergreen species, and that a severe winter would
destroy them. He finds one hundred and thirty-one species of the
Temperate Zone--species that can stand a moderate amount of
cold, but not very hot and dry climates. He finds eighty-five
species of tropical plants that could not possibly live where
the Winters are severe. Mingled with these were nearly three
hundred species whose natural home is in the warm, temperate
portions of the earth. The only way you can explain this motley
assemblage of trees is, to suppose that in what is now Europe
was a climate free from extremes, allowing the trees to put
forth flowers and fruits all the year round. "Reminding us,"
says Prof. Heer, "of those fortunate zones where Nature never
goes to rest."<35>
Illustration of Miocene Mammals.-----------
Let us now inquire as to the animals that roamed through these
great forests we have been describing. The Miocene period
extended over a long lapse of time, and considerable change took
place among the animals belonging to the different parts of this
age. We will only give a general outline for the whole period.
The marsupials lingered along into the early stages of this
period, and then disappeared from Europe. The rhinoceros were
present in the early stages, and continued through the entire
age. We meet in this period animals of the elephant kind, two
species, the mastodon and deinotherium. Antelopes and gazelles
wandered in vast troops over the plains of Hungary, Spain, and
Southern France. Carnivorous animals resembling tigers and
hyenas found abundance of animal food. Herds of horse-like
animals fed on the rich herbage of the meadows. The birds were
largely represented. In the woods were to be seen flocks of
gayly feathered paroquets and trogons. On the plains secretary-
birds hunted the serpents and reptiles, which furnished them
food--and eagles were on the watch for their prey. Cranes waded
in the rivers for fish. Geese, herons, and pheasants must have
Our main interest centers in the order Quadrumana. We must
remember that this order appeared in the Eocene. Several species
were present in the Miocene. They wandered in the forests of
France, Switzerland, Germany, and Italy, and doubtless found
abundant food in the figs and bread-fruit, walnuts, almonds,
dates, and other nuts growing there.<36> One of the most
important is regarded as belonging to the same genus as the
Gibbons.<37> This is the genus which has been sometimes regarded
as making a nearer approach to man than any other monkey.<38>
Others, however, consider it as belonging to an extinct
family.<39> In addition to this species there were at least
three other species: thus there was no absence of simian life in
From the sketch we have thus far drawn of the Miocene Age, it
seems to have been a very favorable one in every respect.
One writer<41> affirms, that "the world never experienced a more
beautiful period." And indeed it seems as if the facts bear out
this statement. A genial, temperate climate was the rule, even
to high northern latitudes. We need not doubt but that there
were grassy plains, wooded slopes, and rolling rivers. Was man
present to take advantage of all these favorable surroundings?
Did he wander through the evergreen forests, and hunt the deer,
antelope, and hogs--the hipparions, and mastodons, and
deinotheres--then so numerous?<42> We know of no inherent
improbability of his existence at that time. An ape belonging to
a highly organized genus was then living in Europe.
Every condition considered necessary for the primeval Garden of
Eden was then satisfied. Let us stop for a minute and examine
the nature of the evidence considered sufficient to prove the
presence of man during any of the past geological ages.
Should we be so fortunate as to find portions of the bones of
the human skeleton in a geological formation in such positions
that they could not possibly have been introduced there since
the deposition of the containing bed, it would of course prove
that man was at least as old as the formation itself. But it
happens that human remains in beds of a previous geological age
are very rare. Indeed, human remains in formations of the
Pleistocene Age,<43> during which we have ample testimony, as we
shall see, of the presence of man, are very rare. The cases in
which there can be no doubt can he reckoned on the fingers.
The explanation of this state of things is not at all difficult,
for it is only under very rare circumstances that portions of
the bones of animals even larger than man are preserved to us in
geological strata. Vast numbers die and vanish away without
leaving a trace behind them for every fragmentary bone we
recover. In the case of man we must remember that, in previous
eras, he was present in very small numbers; that, owing to his
intelligence, he would not be as liable to be drowned and swept
away, and so mingle his remains with beds of river detritus then
forming, as were animals. Mr. Lyell has made some remarks on the
draining of the Haarlem Lake by the government of Holland in
1853, which shows that even favorable circumstances do not
always preserve remains for future inspection. Though called a
lake, this body of water was an arm of the sea, covering about
forty-five thousand acres. The population which had lived on the
shores of the lake was between thirty and forty thousand souls.
"There had been many a shipwreck, and many a naval fight on
those waters, and hundreds of Dutch and Spanish soldiers and
sailors had met there with a watery grave," yet not a solitary
portion of the human skeleton was to be found in its bed.<44>
Thus we see that, in the majority of cases, we must rely on
other evidence than the presence of human bones to prove the
existence of man in the geological periods of the past. In the
case of the Haarlem Lake again, there was found the wreck of one
or two vessels, and some ancient armor. So, had it been a
disputed point whether man was a denizen of this planet at the
time when the area in question was covered by water, it would
have been settled beyond a doubt by these relics of his
industry, even though portions of the human frame itself were
entirely wanting. And, in reality, proofs of this nature are
just as satisfactory as it would be to discover human bones.
If, on a desert island, we find arrow-heads, javelins, a place
where there had been a fire, split bones, and other
debris of a feast, we are as much justified in asserting
that man had been there, as we would be had we seen him with our
own eyes. In the same manner, if we detect in any strata of the
past any undoubted products of human industry--such as weapons,
or implements and ornaments--in such position that we know they
could not have been deposited there since the formation of the
bed itself, we have no hesitancy in asserting that man himself
is of the same antiquity as the strata containing the
implements. In the great majority of cases, this is the only
kind of evidence possible to advance.
It is now well known that the first stage in the culture of any
people, is what is called the Stone Age. That is to say, their
weapons and implements were made from stone, or at least the
majority of them were. We will discuss on another page this
point, and also the grounds leading us to infer that many of the
extremely rude forms are really the work of man.
Let us now return to the Miocene Age, in which we are to seek
for the presence of man. In 1867 a French geologist, by the name
of Bourgeois, who had been searching some beds of the Miocene
Age, near Thenay, France, found a number of flints of such a
peculiar shape, that he concluded they could only be explained
by supposing that man formed them. In this case there is to
question as to the age of the stratum containing the flints.
All geologists are agreed that it is of the Miocene Age.
The question then is, whether the flints were artificially cut
or not. On this question there has been a great division of
opinion, and we can not do better than to examine and see where
the Principal scientific men stand on this point.
In 1872, at the scientific congress in Brussels, this question
was referred to a committee composed of the most competent men
from the different countries of Europe. We are sorry to say
that, after a thorough consideration of them, the judges were
unable to agree. Some accepted them, others rejected them, and
still others were undecided. Some of the latter have since
become convinced by recent discoveries.<45>
Since this discovery, similar specimens have been described as
having been found in Portugal, and from another locality in
France. Some men of the highest authority accept these flints as
proving the presence of man in Miocene times. This is supported
by such men as Quatrefages, Hamy, Mortillet, and Capellini.<46>
These are all known to be competent and careful geologists.
Another class does not think the evidence strong enough to
declare these flints of human origin, and so do not think it
proved that man lived in Europe in Miocene times; but do believe
that we will eventually find proofs of his existence during that
era in the warm and tropical regions of the globe. This is the
view of such men as Lubbock, Evans, Huxley, and Winchell. Still
others say that, during the vast lapse of years since Miocene
times, all the species of land mammals then alive have
perished<47>--their place being taken by other species--and
therefore it is incredible that man, the most highly specialized
of all animals, should have survived. And hence, if these Thenay
flints are really artificial in their origin, it is more
reasonable to suppose they were cut by one of the higher apes,
then living in France, than by man. This is the view of Prof.
Dawkins and Prof. Gaudry.<48> As to the last view, it is surely
but reasonable to suppose, with Quatrefages,<49> that the
superior intelligence of man would serve to protect him from the
operation of causes that would effect the extinction of lower
animals. Hence, unless some evidence be produced to show that
species of apes are known to make rude stone implements, or some
evidence that they did this in past ages, we must believe, with
Geikie and others, that these flints prove that Miocene man
lived in France, unless indeed we refuse to believe that they
It also seems to us that those who hold to the view that man was
living in other parts of the world, as Asia, during the Miocene
Age, ought readily to admit that a few wandering bands might
penetrate into Europe.<50> The climate was tropical, there was
an abundance of animal life, and, if man was living anywhere, it
is very reasonable to suppose that, at some epoch during the
course of the Miocene Age, he would have found his way to
Europe, unless shut off by the sea. It therefore seems to us
that the presence of those cut flints is conclusive of the
presence of man in Europe during the Miocene Age. At the same
time we can not affirm that this is the conclusion of the
scientific world. They seem to have heeded the remark of
Quatrefages, that "in such a matter there is no great urgency,"
and are waiting for further discoveries.
Thus far in our review we have noticed the steady progress in
the forms of life. In the Miocene Age we have seen all the types
of life below man present, and some indications of the presence
of man himself. We must now learn what we can of the Pliocene
Age, the last division of the Tertiary Age.
The Pliocene Age need not detain us long. Considerable changes
in the geography of both Europe and America were going forward
during the Miocene Age, and the result was quite a change in
climate. There was a steady elevation of the Pacific coast
region of America, and, as a consequences a period of great
volcanic outbursts in California and Oregon.<51> At the same
time the bridge connecting Asia and America was severed.<52>
In Europe the Mediterranean area was elevated; but the land
connecting Greenland with Europe sank, allowing the cold waters
of the Arctic to communicate with both the North Sea and the
Atlantic--England at that time forming part of the great
peninsula extending north and west from Europe.<53> The climate
during the Pliocene Age was cooler than that of the Miocene.
This is marked in the vegetation of that period. The palms and
the cinnamon trees, which in Miocene times grew in Germany,
flourished no farther north than Italy during the Pliocene.<54>
Count DeSaporta, who made special researches in the flora of
this period, found the remains of a forest growth buried under
lava on the side of a mountain in Cantal France, at an elevation
of about four thousand feet above the level of the sea.
This consisted principally of pines. This shows that probably
all Northern Europe was covered with somber forests of pine.
In the same section he found, buried under volcanic ash, a
vegetation consisting mostly of deciduous trees--maples, alders,
poplars, willows, elms, and ashes. As this was growing at the
height Of about twenty-three hundred feet in Cantal France, it
probably represents the vegetation of Britain and Northern
Germany. Finally, the vegetation of Central and Southern France,
as well as Northern Italy, was intermediate in character between
the luxuriant evergreen forests of the Miocene Age and that now
growing there. The tropical character of the vegetation was
evidently passing away. The climate over a large part of Europe
was now temperate, though probably warmer than at present.<55>
In the Mammalia we have to notice the disappearance of some
species, and the arrival and spread of some others. The apes
living as far north as Germany in the Miocene Age were
restricted to Southern France and Italy in the Pliocene, and, at
its close, vanished altogether from Europe. The first living
species of mammals is found in the remains of the hippopotamus
that frequented the rivers of Pliocene times. The mastodon of
Miocene times was still to be seen, but along with it was a
species of true elephants. The hipparion survived into this
epoch, but the horse also makes its appearance. Great quantities
of deer roamed over the land; and, as might be expected where
they were so abundant, the carnivorous animals allied to the
bears and wolves, panthers, linxes, and tigers, were also to be
found. "At night," says Mr. Dawkins, "the Pliocene forests of
Central France echoed with the weird laughter of the hyena."
The gradual lowering of the climate is also shown by the remains
of the mollusks deposited in beds of marine or sea formation
during different eras of this age. It is found that the earlier
the bed, the more southern mollusks are found in it. This shows
us that, all through the Pliocene Age, the waters of the seas
surrounding England were gradually growing cooler, thus
compelling the retreat of those mollusks fitted only for a warm
climate, and allowing a gradual increase in those species fitted
for cold or northern latitudes. We also find, in deposits made
near the close of Pliocene times, numbers of stone which show
all evidence of having been borne thither by means of ice. So we
may conclude that rafts of ice came floating down the North Sea
during the closing period of the Pliocene Age.<56> Still, during
the entire length of the Pliocene Age, Europe certainly offered
an inviting home for man. Not only were the higher orders of
animals present, but at least one living species was known.
We find more proofs of his presence, but whether they are
sufficient to convince us that man really lived during that
epoch is to be seen.
Prof. Whitney has brought to the attention of the scientific
world what he considers ample evidence of the presence of
Pliocene man in California. We reserve this for discussion in
another place. We will only remark, at present, that the
evidence in this case is regarded as sufficient by some of the
best of American Scholars.<57> We simply mention them here, so
that they may be borne in mind when we see what evidence Europe
has to offer on this point. In 1863, M. Desnoyers, of France,
discovered, in a stratum which he considered Pliocene, some
bones of elephants and other animals cut and scratched in such a
manner that he considered the cuts to be the work of man.
As showing how cautious geologists are of accepting such
conclusions, we mention this case. There was found in the same
bed the remains of an extinct beaver. The question was at once
raised, whether rodents by gnawing these bones could not have
produced the cuts in question. Sir Charles Lyell, by actual
experiments in the Zoological Gardens in London, soon showed
that this was probably the fact.<58> Yet Sir John Lubbock thinks
it quite likely some of them were of human origin.<59>
Subsequently, however, M. Bourgeois discovered in the same bed
worked flints, about the human origin of which there seems to be
no doubt;<60> but a more careful study of the formation in which
they occur has raised questions as to its age. Though usually
held to be Pliocene, some careful observers consider it to be of
a later age. Geologists can not be accused of rashly accepting
statements as to the antiquity of man.
In 1867 there was discovered, in Northern Italy, a human skull
in a railway cutting at a depth of nearly fifty feet.
This stratum contains remains of several Pliocene animals.
This is held to prove the existence of Pliocene man by several
eminent observers, amongst others Prof. Cocchi, of Italy, and
Forsyth Major.<61> But in this case Mr. Dawkins contends that it
was not found under such conditions as render it certain that
the stratum had been undisturbed, and so does not prove to a
certainty that it was of the same age as the stratum.<62>
And Mr. Geikie thinks that the stratum itself is of a later age
than the Pliocene.<63> It is but right that geologists should
thus carefully scan all the evidence produced.
Illustration of Cut on Bones of a Whale from Pliocene Deposit.-
In 1876 Prof. Capellini discovered, in a Pliocene deposit in
Italy, the bones of a whale, which were so marked with cuts and
incisions that he thought the only explanation was to say they
had been cut by men. In this case<64> there is no dispute as to
the age of the stratum. Neither is there much doubt but that the
cuts are the work of man. It is quite true that Mr. Evans has
suggested that they may be the work of fishes. In this he is
followed by Prof. Winchell.<65> But there appears to be little
ground for such belief, because the cuts are all on the outside
faces of rib-bones, and the outer faces of the backbones.
From the position occupied by the remaining portions of the
skeleton, Prof. Capellini is sure that the animal had run
aground, and, in that condition, was discovered and killed by
men, who then, by means of flint knives, cut away such portions
of food as they wished. It must have been lying on its left
side, since the cuts were all made on bones of the right.<66>
It is not probable that fishes would have been apt to choose the
outside faces of the ribs on the right side for their meals.
These cut bones have been carefully examined by many competent
men, who have agreed with Capellini that they are the work of
men.<67> Mr. Dawkins thinks the cuts were artificial, but he
says, "It is not, however, to my mind satisfactorily shown that
these were obtained from undisturbed strata."<68> Now these
bones have been found in several localities, always in Pliocene
deposits, which formed the shores of the Pliocene sea.<69>
Knowing how carefully geologists inquire into all the
surroundings of a find, surely, if Capellini and others are the
competent men they are admitted to be, they would have informed
us long ago if they were not found in undisturbed strata.
Mr. Dawkins also objects because fragments of pottery were found
in the strata. "Pottery," says he, "was unknown in the
Pleistocene Age,<70> and therefore is unlikely to have been
found in the Pliocene."<71> Mr. Geikie says this objection is
founded on a mistake, as Prof. Capellini told him the pottery
was found lying on the surface, and was never for a moment
imagined by him as belonging to the same age as the cut
bones.<72> There is also the objection, that, inasmuch as all
the mammals then alive except one have perished, it is more than
likely that, had man been in existence then, he too would
We considered this point fully when speculating as to the
presence of man in the Miocene: so we have nothing further to
offer. We might, however, suggest that, if the hippopotamus
amongst mammals could survive all the changing time since the
Pliocene, as it has done, it seems no more than fair to admit
equal power of endurance to the human species. The position then
of the scientific world as to the Pliocene Age of man is, on the
whole, more decided in its favor than for the Miocene Age.
Quite a number of eminent scholars, whose conclusions are
worthy of all respect, unhesitatingly affirm the existence of
Pliocene man in Europe. Others are not quite ready to admit his