NOTHING but a thorough conviction of the importance of testing the stream of History at its very source, would have induced that process of investigation with whose partial results the reader is here presented.
A gigantic mass of absurdities now lies exposed, for a sifting examination. It remains for the patient sagacity of European scholarship, working upon both Occidental and Oriental materials, to re-build, I trust, upon no unstable foundation, that Temple of History which national vanity has destroyed, and whose ruins national Bud'hism has obscured.
A thorough persuasion that no nation, as a body of men, would or could, gratuitously, through a series of ages, invent a series of tales, in themselves fabulous, in their results historical,-determined me in the resolution to enter upon a process which should test the doctrine of invention, or non-invention, and thus gain some criterion for an impartial and a final decision. That problem is now solved. A plain, practical, and positive appeal to the very language of the first Hellenic settlers, will give a correct answer to the patient inquirer after truth, Those primitive colonists have been traced with a precision that nothing but the singular cohesion of the constituent parts of that ancient form of society called "a tribe," could have secured. This is a species of argument that will be duly appreciated by the contemplative mind.
The evidence thus gained, is evidence drawn from no partial source-it is evidence drawn forth from nations whose impress is of the highest antiquity.
Amid the ruins of empires, or the transient memory of the mightiest conquerors, Time has very generally respected both the form and the name of the grand features of nature. Cities and Polities may have been swept from the earth; Dynasties of unrivalled splendour may have passed away, leaving scanty memorials,-possibly none-to record their renown; but it is not so with the history ineffaceably written on the venerable forms of mountains, seas, and rivers. These compose a language so vast and so enduring, that compared with them, the Pyramids, must be considered as dwarfed toys of agglutinated sand which must crumble to atoms before the structure of this language shall be destroyed.
One of the most valuable points, in connection with the results here wrought out, is this geographical basis. It has interpreted correctly, and it will continue to interpret correctly, those singular tales, in early Greek history, which have generally passed current with the literary world, under the name of "Myths." They are now proved to be fables, just in proportion as we misunderstand them; truths, in proportion as they were once understood. Our ignorance it is which has made a myth of history; and our ignorance is an Hellenic inheritance, much of it the result of Hellenic vanity.
The Sanscrit scholar will find a few irregularities in that process which I have developed. They are such as belong to a form compounded of the old Pehlvi and the Sanscrit, the latter serving as the basis, and the former the inflective power. A superficial glance over this branch of my investigation, will convey some idea to the philologist of two interesting facts. First.-The primitive dialects, whence sprang the Greek of Homer. Secondly. The exact way in which the Greek consonantal and vocalic combinations were pronounced by Herodotean and Thucydidean Greeks.
The apparent irregularities of orthography occurring in connection with the same word, will be found to be more imaginary than real. It will be well for the reader to accustom himself to such variations of form, but not of power, nor of signification. He will thus consider Lakedaimon, Lacedamon; Cabul, Cabool, Kabul, Kabool; Tibet, Thibet; Cashmir, Cashmire, Casmir, Kashmire, Cashmere; Ladakh, Ladak, Ladac; Attock, Attac, Atac, Uttuck; Goclapes, Gooklopes, Guclopes, Cuclopes, Cyclopes; Panjab, Punjab, Punjaub, Panchab; Phenicia, Phoenicia, Phoenikia, Phainikia; as identical. And so with geographical nomenclature generally. When, however, such varieties appear in this work, they will, with few exceptions, be found to arise from the necessity of running parallel with the irregular mean- derings of the Hellenic or Oriental streams. A notable example of the singular variety of these forms, will be found under the name Budha.
It is evident that two classes of literature must now be studied in connection with ancient Greece. First,- The Mythology of Greece, showing what Greeks thought and wrote in connection with their divinities, and the immense mass of legend in juxtaposition with them. Secondly,- The History, which at present lies buried beneath this mythology; which, as forming the very earliest records of Hellas, must be studied like any other portion of established history.
Henceforward, let us not, succumbing to an easy indolence, deny on theoretical grounds the existence of those truths which Geography has restored to History.
WERE an Englishman to sit down, purposing to write the history of his native country previous to the Nor- man conquest-to sketch the outlines of the Anglo- Saxon constitution, laws, and customs; were he to speak confidently of the old Saxon kings; their attendants, military and civil; to unfold the origin of their people, the structure of their language, and their primitive settlements; it would not be too much to expect that he should have some knowledge of the Saxon tongue.
And yet, what must be said of the confidence of the antiquarians of Greece, who, though themselves Hellenes, have, with a profound ignorance of the early language of Pelasgian Hellas, turned twilight into darkness, by absurd attempts to derive the words and customs of remote antiquity from the Greek language-a language at that period not in existence? But this vain-glorious confidence is not the only thing for which they are answerable. They have thereby unwittingly originated a gigantic system of absurdities and a tissue of tales, the opprobrium of history, and the torment of the inquiring mind. We feel that all this mass of error has a foundation in positive fact; we feel that agency, the most vital, the most energetic, the most constant, is at work; mighty actors come and go upon the scene, and mighty changes take place. And yet we are called upon by Theorisers to renounce the instincts of our nature; to class the siege of Troy, the Argonautic expedition, the history of Heracles, the history of Theseusnay, the whole busy, crowded scene of early Hellas, with the product of mythopoeic propensities, and secretions from the fancy. Alas! for this dream! I shall prove incontrovertibly, not only that such things were distorted facts, but I shall demonstrate that the Centaurs were not mythical - that the Athenian claim to the symbol of the Grasshopper was not mythical-that the Autochthons were not mythical-that the serpent Pytho was not mythical-that Cadmus and the dragon's teeth were not mythical-that Zeus was not mythical-that Apollo was not mythical-that the Pierian Muses were not mythical-that Cecrops was neither legendary nor mythical; but as historical as King Harold. And this I purpose to effect, not by any rationalising process, but by the very unpoetical evidences of latitude and longitude, which will certainly not be deemed of a legendary nature.
I would here repeat a remark made on another occasion on the historical basis of mythology. Perhaps within the whole compass of mythology there is no system altogether more plausible than the Grecian. Its coherence betrays art in arrangement, but weakness the main incidents. A basis, however, it undoubted possessed, which was neither of an inventive nor fictitious character. What that basis was, is certainly not be eliminated from either poet or logographer, or historian, independent of extraneous aids. Such aids are presented to the inquiring mind in those two most durable records of a nation,-its language and its monument These adjuncts, though of foreign origin, are, fortunately, available for the elucidation of Greek mythology. There is nothing more calculated to blunt the keenness of investigation than any theoretic maxim which lays down some general position to meet general difficulties. Here, acquiescence must be the rule, and research the exception. Nothing can be more tempting to indolence. To assume individual or national feeling as the exponent of fact, and fact too possibly foreign to that individual (nation, must be a perilous mode of rescuing from error re-establishing truth.
|Chapter One||The Evidences of Indian Colonisation||12|
|Chapter Two||: The Sources of Hellenic History||24|
|Chapter Three||:The Emigrants||36|
|Chapter Four:||Sources of Greek Error||47|
|Chapter Five:||Oriental Research||58|
|Chapter Six:||The Hellenes||68|
|Chapter Seven||: Attica||82|
|Chapter Eight||: The Northern Tribes||110|
|Chapter Nine:||The Himalayans||135|
|Chapter Ten:||The Centaurs||152|
|Chapter Eleven||: Dodona and The Hyperboreans||170|
|Chapter Twelve:||The Cashmirians||181|
|Chapter Thirteen||: The Heliadse||223|
|Chapter Fourteen:||The Bud'ha Sivas||254|
|Chapter Fifteen:||The Promised Land||294|
|Chapter Sixteen:||Time, The Basis of Error and Truth||325|
|Chapter Seventeen||: Hesiod's History of Greece||352|
|Chapter Eighteen||: Phoenician Bud'hism||385|
|Chapter Ninteen||: Apollo-The Bud'hism of Ladac and The Ladacai-men||401|
|Chapter Twenty||The Attac-t'hans||454|
|Chapter Twenty One||The Bud'hist Missionary||486|
|GEOGRAPHY INDEX OF AFGANISTAN||563|
|GEOGRAPHICAL INDEX OF GREECE, WITH||568|
Item Code: NAK840 Author: E. Pococke Cover: Paperback Edition: 2015 Publisher: Rupa Publication Pvt. Ltd ISBN: 9788129137944 Language: English Size: 7.0 inch X 4.5 inch Pages: 586 Other Details: Weight of the Book: 300 gms