« ПредишнаНапред »
energetic skill,” selects one little island out of the groupe (reserved, probably, for a druidical school by reason of its sequestration), and then applies his indiscriminate remarks to the whole Cimbric nation. Would it, now-a-days, be just, honorable, manly, historically correct, or, rather, nationally true, were some flimsy traveller or yachter to compare, for the behests of China and Japan, and ex cathedrâ to decide the civilisation of the Greeks, Austrians, Swedes, Scotch, and Italians, of the mainland, with that of the inhabitants of certain fishing or pastoral islets in the Archipelago, the Adriatic, the Baltic, and the North Sea ? Weigh the code of facts in its own scale, and then the axiom of Euclid, of “ things equal the same are equal to each other,” will not be thrown away to the ever-varying winds and blasts of historical inaccuracies.
“Look on this side and on that.”
Facta virûm-culpas, laudes, ab origine mundi.
- The Cassitenides," he observes, “ are ten in number; thev, being sea-girt, lie near each other, northwards from the harbour of the Artabri. One of them is uninhabited ; in the others dwell a people (the priests] wearing black gowns reaching to the feet [like the present monks of Europe, I ween], clad also in tunics, with girdles round their waists. [Can this refer to the lay sisters ?_So, after all, the people were not quite naked or painted, or clad in skins). They also go about with wands in their hands, something like the Furies in tragedies. [Which, Greek or Roman?] They live, principally, a nomad life (What! is there not a resemblance to the trappists here?], subsisting on their flocks and herds. And as they have mines of tin and lead [They had tools and artistic skill, had they ?], they exchange these metals for earthenware, salt, and bronze, imported by merchants.” I will leave the painted-skin school to deduce other facts relative to modern life on the aggregate, from the untrammelled recollections or on dits of a Strabo and his other contradictory imitations and suppressions of truth.
On the other hand, I feel it incumbent on me to inquire into and analyse certain allegations brought forward by certain groundless etymologists respecting a novel Cassiterian aspect of this question. To this theoretical school I will say, that ingenious surmises fall short, when unaccompanied by some potent proofs, or, when driven to their wit's end, to trifle with historical facts based on and compared with other facts. We Cimmerians insist, as others do from us, on something tangible to the senses—some corroboration of their ideas froin uniformly accredited sources of antiquity-otherwise their fanciful modern chateaux en Espagne filled with tin and bronze, are but spectral-winged imitations of a
diseased imagination brought to an untimely end through the sheer want of oriental shadowings.
In the first place, I have no objection to the term 'cassiteros' being derived, according to fantasy, from the Sanscrit verb kasdir, to shine, or castir, something shining, nor at its being, at a running jump, applied to a shining metallic substance; but I do logically object to this substance, call it brass, tin, copper, or lead, if you please, serving as a theoretical basis to be referible to some alleged unsupported discovery of tin in remote antiquity by a quasi posthumous disinterring of the same within, yea far within, the scope and remembrance of the Christian era.
Let us probe this view—this Indian-Ocean-aspect—this ideal manifestation, or rather obscuration, of Occidentalism, as mooted by the shining Kasdir or Castir element. The problematical adoption or rejection of its signification has nothing whatever to do with the enquiry. What then !-look at your maps. Is it presumable that the Phænicians periodically crossed the mighty Indian Ocean without a compass, to Banca or Malacca, in quest of tin or gold ? The idea is preposterous; though, I admit, daring sailors might have possibly doubled the Cape of Good Hope without a compass, by keeping the land ever or occasionally in view, as stated by Herodotus. Will this idea of a Banca satisfy general belief ? Credat Judæus ! But a Jew has already, through Ezekiel, smashed the theory before it was or could be concocted. But, granting the hypothesis, en passant, where is the result of the mental operation ? Nowhere, as far as its application to or in history is concerned—nowhere, as far as practical facts can or ever were deduced: nowhere, as regards the probability—the recorded results of a Cassite Rian substantiality, except in the lucid brains of the modern concocters.
But, on the other hand, it can be confidently asserted that an early British Commerce did really take place with the traffickers of East and West, in this very article.
Here a very natural question propounds itself to our view. What did the Cærulei Britanni get in return for their hardware? In all histories of commerce these questions are correlative. Whatever the exchange may have been, with the Phænicians, Armoricans, or Veneti, the Massilians, the Phoceans, Ionians, Carthaginians, and Romans (who, after the conquest of their Punic rival, were the first to seize and plunder the gold-and-loreinvested island, and subject it to foreign rule) the intercourse, both socially and commercially, as regards the former Powers, must have been, as already shown, in primeval ages, advantageous to their growth and development as "a numerous, a civilised, and a powerful nation,” (magna vis gentis) and "a people of energetic skill,” and “ hospitable in the extreme,” in their own mother-land and their own Britannia Antiquissima.
CASTELLA ET ÆDIFICIA BRITANNICA.
“Beautiful art thou, land of my home, e'en to a stranger's glance, " Thy mountains are magnificent, thy castles breathe romance, “There is a charm in the time-worn towers,' a sadly pleasing spell “In the roofless chambers where alone the owl and the ivy dwell. “ Land of the bard, the harp, the song, land of my love and birth, “Oh, be the • Awen' still thine own, and thine the kindly hearth.”
AMID scenes of uninterrupted aggression, of insatiable vengeance, and of threatened depopulation, is it to be wondered at, that, during a period, not, be it remembered, of a thirty years' wardireful even then to agricultural pursuits, to arts and sciences, in fact, to modern civilization-but during a compass of a thousand years and upwards of such a, .status quo,' devastation, that any fragments whatever of our triadic and bardic literature—that any relics of our prehistoric forts and castles, much less of our, as of Roman, or of your own, very humble homesteads—should have been left us, other tens of hundreds of years afterwards, to glean a tale of distant woes and wrongs not yet filled up, as to doled out honors in the Cambrian Church or State, by ministers of the Crown—mementoes of the sweeping past; or that any Cimmerianspeaking Cymro should have remained alive on earth to prove, from the heniaith gysefin, our identity with the great Cimmerian nation of Asiatic and European antiquity, beyond the extant grasp, the powerless control, of literary annals?
"Well, indeed!' is the generous, the manly sneer! · Well!' the happy retort! Where, oh, where? is your boasted literature ? where is there a trace of your footsteps on the soil ? where the tokens of your golden torcs, your silver, and your bronze? your castles and your princely homes ?
Stop, thou worse than adroit concealer of the truth. The wheres' and 'whereabouts,' Deo gratiæ, from north to south of Prydain Fawr, are extant still, though grave-like robed in majesty of death, as veiled with ivy-sprigs and yews or other Taliesinian emblems of the forest, to confound the slanderous unsubstantiality of the charge, and point a moral to us both. Dost thou insinuate thereby the plausibility, the absolute necessity of Cimmerian freebooting-subjugations, if not of Cimbric extermination, to prove thy then superior state of moral culture, as of thy humanising appliances of life, as a sort of posthumous excuse to civilise the isle and arrogate supremacy? Thou reckonest without thine host. Let Sharon Turner tell thee who and what a Saxon was in pirate days of yore;-what illiterate, what LAWless, what COINless members of disturbed society thy very traitor chiefs and warriors were, without refining codes of honor, or principles of right and wrong, in the palmy days of Arthur and his Augustan age of bardic literature of Taliesin, of Aneurin, or of Llywarch Hen! How many centuries, yea, how many adventitious causes, ignored, unthanked, or seemingly unknown, led thee onward in the countless march of ages to produce a Spencer, or a Chaucer, or e'en a Caractacusian model of a British •Imperator gentium,' full six hundred years before our own Cimmerian galaxy of lettered stars above? Thy boasted princes were, for centuries, like those Miranda chants of, in his · Lays of Portugal
“Dizem dos nossos passados
“So rude were our forefathers in the lore
“Of letters, that they scarce knew how to read.” There, utrinque, will I leave thee with thy wished-for records and authorities. Close my page: consult thine own. Truth and wisdom-lessons will be found therein, perhaps.
But this mode of action, as propounded by the foregoing questions, reminds me, and not inaptly, of an anecdote I once heard in Llyn-dan, Llyn-din, or Llyn-deyn, alias Troi-no-fant, since known under its plagiarised and corrupted forms of Lon-din-, um ), Trinovant-(um), Lon-don, Lun-nun, or Lon-dres (the city lake) of the continent-an anecdote, I say, of three self-assured robbers of the highways,
S D , and N- gloating in their pelf, who, after having adroitly purloined the golden snuff-box of an Hibernian, conveyed the property, and passed it over, “en reglé,' from one accomplice to the other. One of these immaculate innocents in crirne boldly and impudently asked him hailing from Ierne, the ultima Thule of the West, to have a look at his gold box, and take a pinch of his best ‘Irish blackguard.' The Hibernian, at once and complacently, without the usual reserve and ridiculous hauteur of accidental pomposities, put his gentlemanlike hands. in his pockets, and, to his dismay and cost, found the ancestral treasure of his clan non est inventus. What was to be done? A brilliant thought, peculiar to the isle that gave him birth, struck the party aggrieved. “How,” addressing himself to his purloiner and plausible interrogationist, “how did you know,
sir, that I took that peculiar kind of snuff at all? How were you aware it was gold and not silver ?” A searching investigation took place before the tribunals of justice. The insult added to injury was exposed. A plea of alibi was impossible, though attempted, flagrante delicto. Another of the culprits had the impertinence, however, (say before William Yardley, Esq., P.M.,) to put forward another plea, and dared to swear that the Irish gentleman, his ancestors, and his neighbors, whether of Prydain or Celyddon, were and ever had been as poor as himself and his mates, with regard to golden ornaments or coinage of the realm, and alleging that, from certain Volusenian hints or inuendos, or some technical Scaligerian versions of the law about his family, he could not have possessed himself of such a golden appendage without having, as a prior particeps criminis, stolen it himself from some other favored and more distant golden lands, at least, he surmised as much—he thought so—was not quite sure—but when further cross-examined by the bar, he had heard so from Smith, Brown, or Robinson, of the bankrupt firm of Hume, Maunder, and Co. " That will do, sir.” Sentence was pronounced, and the trio were transferred to a QUOD, reserved by Justice, to conscientiously study the principles and relative value of · Whewel's Moral Right and Wrong.' Humanity expects the chaplains to do their duty.
Apply the moral and its process to the treasures of our Caerau, our Castellau, and the fragmental gems of our prehistoric literature.
Sic sæcula sæculorum witnessed with amazement and with awe, if not with shudder, the Cimmerian nation in the pangs of life and death with the legions of the Roman world, in arms against the Sons of Earth—the true autochtons of the Isle. Natio tamen supervixit.
Thus, hundreds upon hundreds of years beheld the Cimmerian nation in the gasping throes of agony with the traitorous and unlettered hordes of Saxons and of Danes, the flattered angeli of Rome. It outlived the shock after all.
Ainsi siecles sur siecles saw and felt the plundering, burning armaments of Norman sway, of Norman tyranny of the deepest dye, goreing the life-blood of Cimmerian sons and daughters, sans relâche, et sans remords. La nation a survecu malgré tout.
Similarly, century upon century heard the beating throbs of our own Britannia Antiquissima circumscribed to Cambria, in mortal combat with a now quadrupled league of amalgamated foes of Anglo-Saxon-cum-Danish-Norman usurpers of her virgin soil, with here and there a renegade from the Cimbric camp, bent on havock, ruin, death, and capture of her forts, her castles, and her strongholds—the hospitable bulwarks of her ageless freedom and renown. Yet withal the nation managed to exist.
Felly, oes ar ol oes looked down upon Cimmerian forts and