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continue to be the same in Australia or America. Habits and manners, appearance, constitution, even language, are affected after a few generations by the climate. Mr. Reade's explanations of the causes of the degradation and sterility of the Red and Black races of Africa, would, by his own showing, apply to any other races planted in such a country, until its condition is ameliorated by drainage and cultivation. He would begin by sending convicts there, beause the malaria, he insinuates, would subdue their bumptiousness. We question if the humanitarians would accept this view of the subject. And yet Angola is preferable to Guyana. However, much remains to be done; and the best commencement would be to teach the native Africans that it is their interest to cultivate, to barter, and to exchange commodities, and above all, to facilitate communication. It is probable that the educability of the negro, and especially of the mixed races, might go as far as this, admitting the growth of the brain to be arrested in the typical race at the age of puberty. Much discussion has arisen lately upon this point, and as to the negro's place in nature; and so little is the subject understood in this country, although perfectly so in the American States, that the mere attempt to bring it in a rational manner before a British public at the late meeting of the British Association at Newcastle by Dr. James Hunt, the President of the Anthropological Society, was received by hisses. Yet it is a very long time since many eminent men have asserted that the negro, if not a distinct species, belonged, at least, to a different race to the Caucasian, or, indeed, to any other. Even the father of English ethnology, Dr. Pritchard, was so puzzled by the question, that he thought that if we all descended from an original pair, they must have been negroes!
There are anatomical and physiological details involved in the consideration of such a subject, which cannot be entered upon here; but taking the typical negro alone in view, there are external and manifest differences which attest a distinct race. The skeleton of the negro is so constituted, that if an European head was placed upon it he would no longer possess a centre of gravity, and therefore, as Dr. Van Evrie, of New York, remarks, "those philanthropic people who would educate' him into intellectual equality, or change the mental organism of the negro, would simply render him incapable of standing on his feet, or of an upright position on any terms.” Nature, however, has provided against any such untoward results, by so ordaining it that the growth of the brain is arrested, by the sutures of the cranium closing at an earlier period than with the European races; and no point is now more generally admitted than that the negro, intelligent as a child, and capable of education as such, is no longer so after fourteen or fifteen years of age. That the negro type presents physical and mental characters, which mere conditions of climate, circumstance, and food, are incapable of creating, it is impossible to deny. We have ourselves thought otherwise; we have argued that there were no negroes in the same parallels of latitude in Asia and America, from peculiar circumstances; and have believed that transitions might be traced through other races between the Caucasian and the negro. But if-as Speke's researches tend to show-the Abyssinian is a mixed race of negro and Ethiopic, or Arab, and if other red and tawny, or dark, but not black, races are also mixed races, the theory
of a transition is placed out of the question, for such races do not originate in outward circumstances, but in the admixture of black with other blood, as in the well-known mulatto.
The negro type is known to have existed in the earliest period of history, and when transplanted to another soil, exposed to another climate, and nourished with another food, it still retains its individuality. It is almost needless to dwell upon the detailed characters of this type. Among the more remarkable is the circumstance that the great toe is separated from the others by a wide space; and hence the foot is frequently used by the negro as a hand. The natives of Equatorial Africa do not climb the trunks of trees as we do by "swarming," but by clasping them with their feet. The natives of the Gambia, when fishing, hold their line between the great toe and the next. When a Kruman is sewing anything, he holds his work between his toes. And the Wolofs will frequently steal articles with their feet.
Besides the external characteristics, including a peculiar odour, by which the negro is said to be separated from other races, it has been discovered by Pruner Bey, Gratiolet, Waitz, and other anatomists, that there exist internal differences which are equally significant. The negro brain approaches that of the ape far more than the European; its very substance is different, and the convolutions are less numerous.
The assumption of the unity of the species of man has been based chiefly on the asserted fact that the offspring of all the mixtures of the so-called races are prolific. "But this," says Mr. Hunt, "is assuming what has not been established. At present it is only proved that the descendants of some of the different races of man are temporarily prolific; but there is the best evidence to believe that the offspring of the negro and European are not indefinitely prolific." All evidence tends, indeed, to establish this belief, or that to be prolific, one or other of the races should have assumed the superority. That is to say, the offspring of the European and negro should have become all European or all negro. More curious points are known in connexion with this question in reference to the Australian aborigines.
The assertion that the negro only requires an opportunity for becoming civilised, is disproved by history. The African race has had the benefit of the Egyptian, Carthaginian, and Roman civilisations; but nowhere did it become civilised. We find from Barth, that there is a certain amount of civilisation in Negroland Proper; but it is stationary, and whenever it receives an impulse it is from without-as yet mainly from the Arabs. The same thing has been shown when in contact with Europeans-an impulse is given, but it is of a most limited character. What have been the results in the free negro government of Liberia? How long have the Portuguese, the English, and the French, had settlements on the coast of Africa, and what change have they wrought in the character of the negro? In the very rear of Cape Coast Castle are the two most savage nations in the world-the Ashantis and the Dahomans. It may be clearly discerned that but for the love of lucre, Speke and Grant would never have survived a visit to his majesty of Uganda. The labours of the missionary with the native negro have produced the minimum of results. We are almost tempted to chime in with Mr. Hunt: "It is said that when the negro has been with other races he has always been a slave.” This is quite true; but why has he been a slave?
It has been said by Dr. van Evrie that the present slaveholders of America "no more think of insurrection amongst their full-blooded slaves than they do of rebellion amongst their cows and horses!" The many assumed cases of civilised negroes, every person's experience will tell them, are not those of pure African blood. Sometimes the mulatto partakes so much of the negro type, that an imposition is easily practised upon people whose sentimental faculties are more lively than their observing powers are acute; but if inquiry was instituted, the fact of all intellectual negroes being mulattos would at once come to light.
The negro has no history, like the Egyptian, the Assyrian, the Jew, the Greek, Arab, or Turk, or so many other people. From the most remote antiquity the negro race seems to have been what it is now. There are some lines in Virgil descriptive of the negro in olden times, and as much to the point as anything ever said or written in our own days:
Torta comam, labroque tumens, et fusca colorem;
Negroes were numerous in Egypt in ancient times, but their social position was the same that it now is, that of servants and slaves. The European, for ever restless, has migrated to all parts of the world, but, as with all inferior races, the negro does not migrate voluntarily. Everywhere, says Dr. Hunt, we see the European as the conqueror and the domi
nant race, and no amount of education will ever alter the decrees of Nature's laws." This point, utterly ignored in England, is almost universally adopted in America, where the negro is better known. Dr. van Evrie observes upon this: "In the United States, among a people almost universally educated, and where the fact of equality' is almost universally understood and acted on, personally as well as politically, the advocacy of the equality of the negro to the white man in any sense whatever is inexcusable on the ground of ignorance; and those thus warring against the laws of nature and progress of society, deserve to be treated as its enemies, or as absolute maniacs, and irresponsible for the evils they seek to inflict upon it." Yet do we read in the daily papers ever and anon of a negro army and of negro officers who are soon to be upon an equality -morally, intellectually, and socially-with the American officer!
It is needless to dwell here upon the disagreeable subject of the "intense immorality" of the negro and the mulatto. Those who want information upon such a subject are referred to Dr. Hunt's pamphlet, to Major Burton's "Abeotuka," or to any other book of African travel, where they will also see the retro-active effect of that immorality, it is sad to say, upon the Europeans who come in contact with them. But a mistaken notion of the true nature, character, and disposition of the negro has led to the most pernicious results, especially in this country, where the liberation of the African element in our colonies, obtained at an enormous sacrifice of money, was to be supplanted by free labour, and what has been the result? According to Mr. Anthony Trollope, an ardent advocate of negro equality, there is only one island in the West Indies where he will work, and that because it is so small that he cannot get a pumpkin-garden in it, and he must, perforce, work or starve. In the mean time, what has become of West Indian produce and West Indian proprietors? Without precisely en
dorsing Dr. Hunt's observations upon this subject, we still give them as well worthy of the most serious consideration whilst the future of Africa and of the negro is before us :
It is painful to reflect on the misery which has been inflicted on the negro race, from the prevailing ignorance of anthropological science, especially as regards the great question of race. By our ignorance of the wants and aspirations of the negro, and by a mistaken theory respecting his origin, this country has been the means of inflicting a prodigious, and, at present, totally unknown amount of mischief on these people. Our Bristol and Liverpool merchants, perhaps, helped to benefit the race when they transplanted some of them to America; and our mistaken legislature has done the negro race much injury by their absurd and unwarrantable attempts to prevent Africa from exporting her worthless or surplus population. All this has been done on the theoretical assumption of a mental equality of the different races or species of man. In an attempt to benefit the negro we have brought on him endless misery, and rendered some of the most beautiful and productive islands in the world of little more use to humanity at large than they were before the discovery of Columbus. But men wedded to a theory become blind to all facts, and will learn nothing from experience. All the millions of money which have been spent, and which expenditure has inflicted great hardships on our own working classes, might have been saved had we taken the trouble to investigate the character of the negro race. Scientific men have yet to do their duty in showing what are the
facts. It may be said that some of the propositions I have advanced are in favour of the slave-trade. Such, however, is not my own interpretation of these propositions. No one can be more conscious of the horrors of the "slave-trade" as conducted at this time. Nothing can be worse for Africa generally than the continual capture of innocent men and women by brutal Europeans. Few things can be more horrible than the manner in which it is attempted to carry these people across the Atlantic. Nay, more, nothing can be more unjust than to sell any man, woman, or child into "slavery," as understood by the Greeks and Romans, where the life of the slave was absolutely at the disposal of the master whenever his caprice or fancy thought fit to take it. We protest against being put forward as advocating such views.
But while I say this, I cannot shut my eyes to the fact that slavery as understood by the ancients does not exist out of Africa, and that the highest type of the negro race is at present to be found in the Confederate States of America. Far superior in intelligence and physique to both his brethren in Africa and to his "free" brethren in the Federal States, nowhere does the negro attain to such a long life as in the Confederate States; and this law formerly obtained in the West India Islands before our mistaken interference. Nowhere does the negro character shine so highly as it does in his childish and fond attachment to his master and his family. The negro cares far more for his master and mistress than he does for his own children after they are a few years old. I by no means join in that indiscriminate abuse of the negro character which has been indulged in, especially by those who have only seen the negro in his savage state, or the 'emancipated" (from work?) in the West India Islands. On the contrary, there is much that is to be admired, and more that is useful, in the negro when properly and kindly treated. Brutal masters there are in every part of the world: but we must not found a law on exceptions. Scientific men, therefore, dare not close their eyes to the clear facts, as to the improvement in mind and body, as well as the general happiness, which is seen in those parts of the world in which the negro is working in his natural subordination to the European. In some respects, the negro is certainly not only not inferior, but even far superior to the European. If, for instance, the European were alone in the Confederate States of America, these fertile regions would soon become a barren waste. The negro is there able to work with impunity, and does himself and the world generally much good by his labour. Occupations and diseases which are fatal to the
Europeans are quite harmless to the negro. By their juxtaposition in this part of the world they confer a material benefit on each other.
But it may be asked, "Why remove the negro from his own country ?" "Why not humanise him in Africa?" No doubt this sounds very feasible, and no pains should be spared to introduce every possible humanising influence into Africa. There is little doubt that the African is much easier humanised out of his native land away from all his savage associations; but this need not prevent us from doing all we can towards civilising him in his own country.
It must not be omitted, when speaking on the future of Africa, that there are not only many different races in that vast continent, as Copts, Arabs, Moors, Berbers, Abyssinians, Gallas, Kaffirs, &c., but that there are also many different people among the so-called negroes. dingos, Fulahs, and Wolofs, for example, are quite distinct from the typical negro: many of these races are, no doubt, hybrids. But to argue that there are two great races, the red and the black, and that the blacks are degraded reds, as Mr. Winwood Reade assumes, is to argue against the experience of all times. We are more inclined to believe the great anatomists and physiologists, that they are one great ethic family, although no doubt, in a practical point of view, the conduct to be pursued by civilised race of people towards families of men that are capable of education and civilisation would be very different to what it would be to those who are incapable of amelioration beyond a certain point. In the one instance, all that would be wanted would be to humanise and educate; in the second, it would be more necessary to coerce to a certain extent, but, at the same time, so to cherish and to nurture the inferior race, that it shall be said, as is the case with the negro in the better class of plantations in the Southern States, that he or she are better off than they would be in their own country, or if in their own country, that their property, offspring, and lives-their general being and welfare-are better provided for under the rule of superior races than under their own rulers. Under no possible European rule could we read of such instances as occur under negro rule as of his Majesty of Ashanti cutting off the hands of a slave, and bidding her scratch his head for vermin with the stumps; of the daily sacrifices of poor females by the regal monster at Uganda; or of the visitor having figuratively, if not actually, to wade through human gore to approach the throne of the successor of that prince, who killed King Da by ripping open his belly, and then called the country Da-omi, or Da's belly!
WILLIAM MAKEPEACE THACKERAY.
BY NICHOLAS MICHELL.
A BRILLIANT star in letters' sky hath set,
But not to rise like Nature's; fate's strong blast