American Egyptomania Search

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

Browse scholarship by topic:

Art & Architecture


the unity of man ; the possession of "one blood" by all the races, one moral and intellectual nature, and one destiny ; it recognizes Adam as the progenitor of the nations which form the theme of biblical history; it explains sundry biblical allusions and implications—for instance, the wife found by Cain in the land of Nod ; Cain's fear of violence from others when condemned to the life of a "fugitive and a vagabond ; " the antithesis of the " sons of God " and the " daughters of men; " it validates the biblical chronology ; it satisfies the demands of facts. The only objection outstanding against this view is the. authority of an opinion formed two or three thousand years ago, by men who also held the opinion that witches ride broomsticks through the air, and that the stars were created two days before Adam, though some of them are so distant that their light has been a hundred thous-and years in reaching us.

Now, let us take up another set of considerations. The Adam of our race is generally.. regarded, I believe, as a man with natural endowments as good as our own. At least, I shall claim so much for him. His immediate posterity developed all the intelligence and moral characteristics which could be expected of modern men similarly situated, and having absolutely everything to learn. If the same Adam must be regarded the progenitor of the Black races, then these races represent a wide-spread degeneracy, which is not only vast and appalling, but must be pronounced eminently improbable. Now, degeneracy of tribes and fragments of tribes is a phenomenon quite familiar in anthropology. It has taken place where the oppression of superior tribes has driven the weaker into the midst of conditions unfriendly to existence. The Spaniards crushed the spirit out of the Peruvians and the Aztecs. The miserable Fuegians are crowded to the dripping and stormy and inhospitable shores of Cape Horn, where nature begrudges man a stick of fuel, and a crab's claw is a thanksgiving feast. The timid Andamaners are the persecuted remnant of a race driven to the shelters of the mountains, and tormented by the penal colony which England has planted on their lands. The Dyaks of Borneo, skulking in the mountains and jungles of the interior, are despised by the superior border tribes of their own race, and denied a rightful place in the ranks

Page 20