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Adamites and Preadamites: or, A Popular Discussion Concerning the Remote Representatives of the Human Species and their Relation to the Biblical Adam

Syracuse, N.Y.: John T. Roberts, 1878


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Adamites and Preadamites.

CHAPTER I.

A SAGACIOUS DUTCHMAN.

In 1655 a small book appeared in Paris, which had for its title the unheard-of subject,"Pre-Adamites." It was written in Latin, and its full title was as follows : Pre-Adanritae, size Exercitatio super Versibus duodecimo, decimo tertio et decimo quarto, capitis quinti Epistolrae D. Pauli ad Romanos, quibus inducuntur Primi Homines ante Adamum conditi." The book appeared anonymously; and those acquainted with the spirit of the dominant ecclesiasticism of that date will readily divine the motive of its author. It very soon became known, however, that it was written by La Peyrere, a Dutch ecclesiastic, whose name when Latinized was Peyrerius. The work was an attempt to prove from biblical authority that men must have lived on the earth before Adam. Within a year appeared its complement, from the pen of the same author, in which the whole subject was newly argued and more thoroughly discussed. This was a " Theological System based on the Hypothesis of Pre-Adamites." The two works may now occasionally be found in one volume. The Syracuse University possesses a copy.

The following year a book appeared in London, the title of which is a literal translation of that of " Pre-Adamites," but it includes also the " Systema Theological " of Peyrerius.

In the undeveloped stage of scientific inquiry existing two and a quarter centuries ago, it is certain that no investigation respecting Pre-Adamites could have been conducted on true anthropo-



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