superior and specifically lighter part of the accumulated mass. . . . . Remote as is the date of 13,500 years from the present time which these probings of the soil appear to have disclosed, they have not enabled us to attain the hoped-for object of discovering an approximate link bebetween historical and geological time. No trace of an extinct organism has been turned up to take the formation of the alluvial land of Egypt beyond that modern epoch from which, in our artificial systems, we are used to carry back our geological reckonings."

"In the lowest part," he continues, "of the boring of the sediment at the colossal statue in the year 1854, at a depth of 39 feet from the surface of the ground, consisting throughout of true Nile sediment, the instrument brought up a fragment of pottery now in my possession. This fragment having been found at a depth of 39 feet, if there be no fallacy in my reckoning, must be held to be a record of the existence of man 13,371 years before A.D. 1854, reckoning by the before-mentioned rate of increase in that locality of 3 inches in a century. . . . In another pit 354 yards north of the colossal statue, at a distance of 330 yards from the river, fragments of pottery were found at a depth of 38 feet from the surface of the ground. . . . Fragments of burnt brick and of pottery have been found at even greater depths, in localities near the banks of the river, ten and sixteen miles below Cairo. At Sigiul fragments of burnt brick and pottery were found in the sediment brought up from between the 45th and 50th feet from the surface, and in the boring at Bessousse they were brought up from the lowest part, viz. 59 feet from the surface."

To these remarks the author would add the following considerations. The operation performed, and the result obtained, are historical, not geological. The soil which has been penetrated is exclusively historical

soil, coeval with mankind, and underlies a monument the date of which can be fixed with all desirable certainty. It is a soil accumulated at the same spot, by the same uninterrupted, regular, infallible agency of that river, which, like the whole country through which it flows, is a perfect chronometer. It is an agency evidently undisturbed by any other agency, during these more than a hundred centuries, by flood or by deluge, by elevation or by depression. The fertilising sediment is found in its place throughout. Under these circumstances it would seem reasonable to suppose that there is no material difference in the rate of secular increase, but that, if there be any, the lower strata would require an inch or half an inch less to represent the growth of a century. But it may also be added, that historical facts lead to the same conclusion, if the space of time during which man has existed on the face of our mother earth be measured, not by conventional notions arising out of ignorance and sanctioned by prejudice, but by facts which any one is capable of investigating, who does not shrink from researches determinable with logical demonstration and mathematical cogency. The indisputable facts of the development of language suffice to prove the two points at issue: that the period commonly assigned to the existence of mankind is much too brief, and that the real duration is not immeasurably or indefinitely long. author would speak freely on this subject, because he feels strongly that in the times in which we live it is as absurd and as irreverent to ignore the linguistic strata, as it would be to take no notice of the strata of the earth, or for a man to set up a system of astronomy of his own, without reference to the Keplerian laws or Newton's immortal discoveries.


Much certainly remains to be done before the two

kinds of research bearing upon this point of chronology are completed and consolidated. The importance of the results obtained, and of the consequences which seem to flow from the researches of Mr. Horner, will, it is to be hoped, induce governments and individuals to institute similar excavations upon the two principles alluded to above. As regards the historical inquiry, the author will not conceal his feeling of a certain scientific satisfaction, in finding that the researches of this work have led to identical results. They are based principally on the history of the languages of Asia, and their connexion with that of Egypt and they do not, in his opinion, contravene in the slightest degree the statements of Scripture, though they demolish ancient and modern rabbinical assumptions; while, on the contrary, they extend the antiquity of the biblical accounts, and explain for the first time their historical truth. The languages of mankind, when once the principle of their original development and the time necessarily required for the formation of a new language out of the perishing remains of an old one are understood, form the strata of the soil of civilisation, as the layers of Nile-deposit warrant the existence of ages necessary for the successive formations of the humus. It is upon this basis, supported by collateral facts and by records peculiar to the history of Egypt, that the four following theses will be established in the Fourth Volume of this work:

First: That the immigration of the Asiatic stock from Western Asia (Chaldæa) is antediluvian. Secondly: That the historical deluge, which took place in a considerable part of Central Asia, cannot have occurred at a more recent period than the Tenth Millennium B. C.

Thirdly That there are strong grounds for supposing that that catastrophe did not take place at a much earlier period.

Fourthly: That man existed on this earth about 20,000 years B. C., and that there is no valid reason for assuming a more remote beginning of our race.

With these observations the author would commend Mr. Cottrell's translation to the English public, and offer at the same time his thanks to Professor Blackie for his version of the dedications to Champollion and Schelling.


Charlottenberg, near Heidelberg,
Nov. 1858.

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