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But, where did this most ancient and highly-cultivated people, whose traces are now extinct," reside?
Some ascribe to " these parent instructors of mankind," the " circumference of the Axinus and the coasts of the iEgean, as their primitive abodes ;" others, " the area of Anatolia." According to others, " the precise situation,'.' (I quote Lord Woodhouselee) "of this great ancient people, M. Bailly does not pretend to fix with certainty, but he offers probable reasons for conjecturing that it was about the 49th or 50th degree of north latitude [higher or lower], in the southern regions of Siberia [i. e., the Bastarnse Cimmerici populi, and adjacent to the Crimea or Cimmeriaj. The observations of the risings of the stars, collected by Ptolemy, must have been made in a climate where the longest day was sixteen hours, which corresponds with the latitude mentioned." Yet, the learned commentator, most unaccountably, as many others before and after him, unconscious, or, rather, forgetful of druidical astronomical attainments, as described by the classics of Greece and Rome, insinuates that "no European nation in that latitude understood astronomy in those early days." Such an assertion is easily made, and then he flies off at a tangent to infer, on equal data, I presume, that "the religion of the Indians and Chinese originated in that quarter." If such be the case, the far East is a far greater plagiarist than we Cimmerians gave it credit for. The profound ignorance of our learned world as to the prehistoric Cimmerians, has founded all its theory of the past on this wretchedly-understood basis. Hence, one error, of any magnitude and importance, generally procreates, according even to our own modern experience, another, frequently more glaring than its antecedent, and thus nullifies, on such a descending scale, any attempt made to reconcile historical differences of opinion so acquired.
I feel a deep debt of gratitude to those of my Cymmrodorion and other friends, viz.—Messrs. J. B. Humffray, M. L. A., W. H. Gatty Jones, M. L. A., Thomas Miles, William Handle, Jenkyn Collyer, the Hon. V. Pyke, M.L. A., the Rev. C. T. Perks, Samuel Thomas, Wriothesly Noel, Richard Hale Budd, Colin Campbell, John Davies, Daniel Owen, James Bevan, Henry Tolinan Dwiglit, M. J. P. Hannify, P. Higgins, Rev. M. Rintel, Arthur Hopkins, George Holmes, P. H. Smith, W. J. Vance, C. R. Swyer, W. A. Zeal, J. M. Thomas, Rev. G. Studdert, A. Gait, R. Cowel, and others really interested in an attempt at a creation, however humble and imperfect, of Victorian Classic Literature; and who have kindly aided and cheered me on in the prosecution of my work, through many untold troubles and difficulties; and I trust that the results of my efforts, though, under various pretexts of cold-waterism, deemed by one 'a non-ledger affair '; by another, 'a piece of useless learning'; by a third, 'nought but Welsh,' will not prove unsatisfactory to those who blend refinement of manners and of intellect with the encouragement of colonial literature, and not with the all-engrossing appetite for usurious or other wealth, or with the supercilious rejection, in a trading spirit, of every pamphlet, book, or poem, not within the accidental sphere of interchanging clientism, visiting predilections, or formal introductions. Let the printers and publishers of Melbourne attest the abashed truth that there is "something pompously rotten in the state of Denmark,' minus book-sale bargains of lettered vellum and illustrations in morocco or otherwise. Let no one empirically put the fault on his neighbor, even though he were a Croesus in disguise, as a balm to his own apathy—an excuse for his own share of indifference with regard to fostering an Australasian literature.
My thanks are also due to his Excellency Sir Henry Barkly, and to His Honor Judge Pohlman.
In conclusion, I trust that my humble efforts to supply a known want in the historical and classical literature of the world will be appreciated by an open-hearted and generous public, the really adopted sons of a Victoria florissante. I invite the fair criticism of the true scholar to the principles therein involved, and await with deference and confidence his verdict. Probably I may provoke the sneer of the cynic and the clamor of the sciolist, by the detection of some vent here, some vent there; but such lite
rary moschetos, such 'mechanised automata,'however much they may succeed, by buzzing verbiage of the hour, in annoying the author, will sting at the symmetry of truth in vain.
"Spirit of Nature! no.
"Thou, aye, erectest there
"Is powerless as the wind,
"That passeth idly by.
"Spirit or Nature! no!!"