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only necessary to trace the German names Vrau court, Graincourt, &c.); selecht back some centuries to find and lastly, from a fortified place rose that it has changed from its original to the dignity of a royal residence. to a meaning diametrically opposite. Many other words have as long and Slecht (good) meant formerly right, surprising a pedigree. Thus the straight, but also simple, which pre- English lord, in the sense of noblesently came to mean foolish or use- man, was in Anglo-Saxon half-ord, less, and useless, bad. The Latin the warder of bread; and lady, in ingenium, which in Latin signified in- A Shlæfdige, she who looks after the born faculty, became degraded in loaf; earl from the Danish Jarl, Italian to ingannare, to cheat. elder, hence alderman; count, from Sælig, in Anglo-Saxon blessed- comes, a companion ; baron, the mebeatus-appears in English as silly. diæval baro, man and knight; the
Highly interesting, indeed, is it to German knecht, servant. watch the changes in form and mean- Professor Muller reiterates in his ing displayed by words passing from first lecture the principle which the Ganges or Tiber to the sea of formed the basal thesis of a demodern European speech. Latin, it partment of his previous volumeis unnecessary to say, which in the that thought, in the sense of reasoning eighth century B.C. was the dialect of is impossible without language. Ina small Italian territory, from becom- fants and animals have each memory, ing the tongue of the conquering Ro- sensation, perception, and instinctive mans not only assumed a dominance judgment, but no trace of the faculty in Italy, but being the language of named by the Greekslogos—both ratio law and government asserted a pro- and oratio --a word derived from minence in a great part of Europe ; legein, to gather, collect, and classify and when coming in contact with the ideas, to select the single from the vigorous idioms of the Teutons, though general. The mind would be as incait could not supplant, it left a layer of pable of recounting things without its vocabulary on their language, so words, as of counting quantities withthat common words once spoken by out numerals. Man could not give the Italian shepherds are now in use nomenclature to a tree, animal, or among the philosophers of Germany, river, without discerning in each the poets of France, and statesmen of some general characteristic quality; England. Take the word palace; one and though the savage in his earliest of the seven hills of Rome, the Pala- state may have named a horse by tine, was dedicated to the pastoral imitating his neighing, such sounds deity Pales, whose festival, celebrated are not language, nor is it in this way on the 21st April, commemorated the that words are formed. Thus the Arian day on which the wolf suckled Ro- word for horse has no resemblance mulus drew the first furrow for the to neighing; derived as it is from the foundation of Rome. In imperial root as, it represents the quality times Nero built his golden house, peculiarly recognised in the animal. which was hence called Palatium, on So wheat was not named from its this hill, and the word thus came to being bearded and waving, &c., but be applied to the palaces of the kings simply white, to distinguish it from and emperors of Europe. The English other edible productions. Roots are word court, French cour, Italian those words in every language which corte, has a similar strange etymology. cannot be reduced to a simpler form; The enclosures or cattle yards on the constituting the last residuum to which hills of Latium were called cohors, analysis can reduce the dialects of an a word subsequently applied to the inflexional tongue, they comprise the divisions of the Roman army. This original germs of human speech. At word, which was used in Rome in the present day the world presents both a pastoral and military sense, several languages which have rewith a difference of pronunciation mained in this germinal condition. merely, became curtis; and was The Chinese, for example, in which a applied in medieval Latin to monosyllable is at once noun, verb, farms and castles of the Roman and particle, its meaning depending settlers, which became the cen- on its place in the sentence; and the tres of villages (hence the modern same is the case with the Polynesian dialects and with the ancient Egyp- possible to trace word-making to a tian, as proved by Bunsen.* We need mere imitation of sounds. Heranot bere recapitulate Muller's theory clitus, in his enigmatic manner, said that every language has passed through that words were the shadows of a radical and agglutinative to an in- things, meaning that man assigned flexional stage, or that originally the such names to the objects around constituent elements of words, of him as he considered expressive. which, from the action of phonetic Democritus represented language as change and dialectical regeneration, due to thesis, institution, or conoften no more than a letter remains, vention ; he does not regard words as were once the real symbols of thought natural images, but works of art, and speech. The attempt at this "statues of sound.” Vague exposiperiod to discover the beginning of tions enough, but sufficient to show language must remain an insoluble that the earliest Greeks by no means problem, as illustrated from the light considered language as an imitation thrown upon it by the history of its of sounds. Speaking of the formalater changes; though aided by ima- tion of language, Muller, adopting gination, physiology may yet indicate the principle of natural selection, the nature of the first sounds spoken proceeds to say that, though a series by savage man, as derived from the of sensuous impressions produce a impressions of the five senses; the mental image, and a number of them number of representative words a general notion expressed in a vocal formed increasing with the progress cry, the faculty of reason in man of the social state. Nothing can be ultimately resolved such constantly more rational, even though devoid of recurring and most useful sounds into the absolute proof afforded by the a root expressive of the general notongues of the oldest civilized and tion of their objects. Subsequently existing savage peoples, however, than new combinations and eliminations the supposition that the earliest body occurred, in which process the pew of all languages consisted of mono- word was determined by its approprisyllables, and that the progress to ateness and utility. more intellectual systems of expres- In proceeding to show that all sion resulted from intercommunication names are general terms, Muller proof races separated by locality, and the duces a number of interesting illusmental necessity and development of trations from various languages. aggregates in the primary conditions Some nations are without names for of civic life.
the numerals beyond four, all beyond After all that is formal or the re- this being aggregated under the idea sult of grammatical art has been re- of many. In the Hawaian dialects moved from language the radical ele- there are no terms to express the ment remains; and all that can be difference between black, blue, darkasserted with respect to those of the ness; between love, friendship, graArian languages in, that they have titude, benevolence, &c. The northdefinite forins and meanings, nothing ern Turanian races have no word for being now asortainable of the mone river, though many for the smallest syllabic or agz'ntiative stages through rivulet; no word for tree, but many which the dialect whirh resulted in for bireh, fir, ash ; but even these Sanscrit and its relatinnal branches special names are really general passed. Su-h ronts have universally terms. In the Society Islands, when a typical meaning, and as regards dogs were first introduced, the natives their origin are not resolvable by any called them broons, their name for interjectional or onomatopæie prin- pigs; and the same thing oecurred at ciple. Even the earliest Greek philo- Tama, instead of giving them a name sophers were aware that it was im- from their barking, a singular example
• As all selenres sid each other with their reflective lights, physical grography and geology are of the best impurtance with respect to ethoxy and philology. The great terrene process of salmer, nee and emerger wbib qarated the black and yellow races, raised the North Afriran Sahara, atherm Arabia, ant rank the ecstatinents in whirl was united Astralia and the bortheru ielan:le, with the Malay Penin ula, is illustrated by the languages, historic and rurrent, of the peoples of these distreta.
of the origin of terms, and quite op- originally the seven bright ones; posed to the onomatopæic theory. and afterwards, by a verbal confusion, Subsequent observation of the quali- came to mean the seven bears, posties of the animal possibly generated sibly from some resemblance to the many names, which natural selection animal. Without understanding the finally reduced to one. Thus in Sans- origin of the name the Greeks and crit there are examples of clusters Romans called the constellation of roots expressive of a common arktos and ursa, and thus the term idea. That selected by the Professor arctic regions (arctus-ouros) has its is the root Mar, of whose history in rise, from a misunderstanding of a its passage through the world he term made ages ago in Central Asia. gives an interesting account, but one When the Greeks spoke of the stars too long to enter upon.
as the eyes of the night, of Argus, In treating of the importance of the all seeing (panoptes), and prometaphor in the construction of lan- ceeded to describe his body as coverguage, Muller quotes Locke, to the ed with stars, we have an example effect that all metaphorical expres- of poetic metaphor, and one of mythosions were originally derived from logical from verbal application. the terms of objects of sense ; but In a very amusing essay on Popular shows that his principle of the pri- Etymology, Muller gives many illusmary existence of a series of arbitrary trations of the singular and contraarticulate sounds to signify definite dictory meanings which have been ideas is unsupported by evidence. assigned to words and expressions. Metaphor is the transference of a From the Anglo-Saxon blot, sacrifice, name from an object to other objects, Wotan, to kill for sacrifice, was dein which the mind traces some par- rived blessian, to consecrate, to bless. ticipation of relations attaching The signs of many old taverns are inthereto. Most roots had a material stances of hieroglyphic mythology, meaning originally, and one so general such as “A Cat with a Wheel,” a coras to be applicable to special objects. ruption of “St. Catherine’s Wheel ;" Thus from those meaning to shine the “Bull and Gate," originally a were formed sun, moon, eyes, gold, trophy of the taking of Boulogne silver, happiness, love ; for those mean- Gate by Henry VIII.; and the “Goat ing to go--clouds, ivy-creepers, ser- and Compasses,” a corruption of the pents
, cattle, chattle" property; for Puritan signboard, “God encomthose meaning to crumble-sickness, passeth us." In Lincon there is an death, evening and night, old age, the ancient gateway called the Grecian fall of the year. There are two sorts of Stairs. These were originally called metaphor-radical and poetical; the Greesen, the old English plural of first, when a root expressive of shin- gree stair. When the meaning of ing is made to form names for sun, greesen was lost, stairs was added spring, brightness of thought, &c.; thereto, and the title ultimately the second, where a noun or verb is changed as above. The proverb transferred to another object or ac- quoted by Hamlet, “ to know a hawk tion, as when the sun's rays are from a handsaw,” was originally " to called its hands, clouds mountains, know a bawk from a hernshaw,” a lightning an arrow, &c. That there sort of heron. The most singular inwas a mythical period in the history stance of popular etymology adduced, of the human race, when all thoughts however, is that of the barnacle that referred to matters beyond the goose. There is a species of shellfish narrow circle of every-day life were named barnacle, which attaches itexpressed in metaphor, is, indeed, self to floating timber, and whose not only true, but equally so that peck exhibits some remote resemthe mental relational action, of which blance to feathers. There is also a the mythologies are an exponent, is goose called bernicula, common to the one of the phenomena of current north of Scotland and Ireland. The existence. Riksha, a Sanscrit word, similarity of the name and fancied derived from a root to be bright, and likeness just referred to, gave rise to having an homonyme siguifying the myth that the barnacle goose bear, was the name given to the con- originated from the mollusc. Several stellation of the ursa inajor. It meant curious passages are adduced from old writers to show the universal a series of marks to distinguish each prevalence of the belief on this sub genus. Professor Muller entertains ject, among them the expostulation a high opinion of the ability shown of Giraldus ('ambrensis to the Irish in constructing this systein ; but bishop, for eating the barnarlo goose thinks from the fluctuating state of in Lent - a practice which those holy knowledge, and various intrinsic cirmen reconciled to their conscience cumstances, that it never could from the supposed marine origin of be rendered universally practical. the bird. The remarks of G. Č. re- " There never," he says, “ was an inspecting the Irish anser, are so strong dependent array of determinate conthat we may conclude he left the ceptions waiting to be matched with bishop without one. Again, there is an independent array of articulate the cívic legend of Whittington and sounds." his cat, whose popularity in the early In the third chapter Professor Muller state of life continues one of the un- treats of the physiological alphabet altered facts of national existence. and enters into a lucid and profound In the fourteenth and fifteenth cen- investigation of the different vocal turies selling at a profit was known sounds in connection with their anaby the French name of achat or acut. tomical apparatus, which well merits The famous Lord Mayor of London careful perusal, and then proceeds to realized a fortune in this way, and the the phonetic changes to which words innocent imagination of the people, in all languages are subject Small dealing with the word whose mean- as is the number of alphabetic eleing was possibly forgotten, in time ments, there are but few pure lansuperadded to the biography of this guages in which they have been utiremarkable man that of his feline lized, those which possess an ample companion.
array of letters, such as Hindustani In relation to the principle enunci- and English, being heterogeneous ated, that thought is impossible tongues. The number of words bewithout language, and that human ginning with h and gui in French speech couki never have operated, as arises from French being Latin spoken some thinkers have supposed, by by Roman provincials and Franks. a conventual agreement, Professor in like manner the literal changes Muller proceeds to state, neverthe- and additions present in English, are less, thai he is far from denying the the result of its being Saxon spoken possibility of forming an artificial by Normans, to whom the introduclanguage. This project has bren tion of the ch and ; are attributable. entertained by many philosphere. There are many languages in which among them Leibnitz, who, however, special letters are elided which are died before he reduced to shape the carential to our utterance. Even the outlines of his theory, and it was wordis for father and mother, which reserved for Bishop Wilkins, the have been supposed to exhibit an brother-in-law of Cromwell
, to work universal similarity, arising from the out the probirin more perfectly, we earliest labial effort and impulse of believe, than any other experiment the infant, are unknown among many alist, in his " Essay toward a Real orth American tribes. The Mo. Character and a Philosophical Lan- hawks, for example, have no labials guage," published in 1662. It was not of any sort the name by which they his design to invent a spoken language, are known is not an indigenous but but to originate all imraphic foreign product'; and the same pecusystem, whose arrangement of sym- larity of abstaining from labial utterbols would be universally intelligible. ance is found among the Senekar, The bishop conceived and executed Onandages, and other tribes-a the project of forming a dictionary of curious fact connected with savage all the knowledge current in his day, articulation. Generally the gutturals comprised in a series of symbols ; a are present in all langtinges, and in the philophical grammar, by which such Semetic especially. The exceptions to ideas and theils were formed into this rule are the inhabitants of the Sopropunitions, and, in the fourth part ciety Islands, the Tahitians, and Haof the work, he frames a representative Wa'ana Dentals are almost univer. language frm the ideaa classified, with sally found, though d is never used in Chinese, Mexican, Peruvian, or e in culiarity being seen in their inscripthe Australian; even Sanscrit has no f tions. or soft silibants ; Greek no y, w, or f; The fifth lecture is devoted to an nor Latin soft silibants or aspirates like exposition of the famous law of the Greek 0,9, x ; English, no guttural Grimm--a discovery which enthubreaths like the German ach, ch. Rsiastic philologists have placed on an is a letter which some nations find it equality with those of Kepler-a impossible to pronounce; thus, instead law which illustrates the fact, that of Christ the Chinese say Ki-li-sse-tu; similar roots are found in the IndoEulopa for Europe, Ya-me-li-ka for European group of languages. WherAmerica. L is unknown in Zend, the ever the Hindus and Greeks proCuniform inscriptions, and various nounce an aspirate, the Gorns, Low American and African tongues. It Germans, Saxons, Anglo-Saxons, is curious to consider the absence Frisians pronounce the correspondand presence of certain letters in ing soft check ; in other words, that certain languages, the cause of the Greek and Sanscrit kh, th, ph, which forms an interesting pro- becomes g, d, b in Gothic; and k, t, h blem for the philosopher and phy- in old high German. This phonetic siologist, who have yet to deter- law is only discoverable in highly demine how far such diversities are the veloped languages, and is not referresult of structure, climate, or habit. able to those in a primitive or seconAs regards consonant sounds, Hindus- dary condition - monosyllabic or tani possesses 48 ; Sanscrit, 37 ; Turk- agglutinative. ish and Persian, 32 and 25; Arabic, One of the most valuable disquisi29; the Katfir, 26; Hebrew, 23; tions in the volume is on the mytho. English, 20; Greek, and Latin, and logy of the Greeks, lecture 9. The Mongolian, 17'; Finnish, 11 ; Polyne- acceptance of a mythology so monsian, 10; Australian, 8. From this strous as that of the Greeks, by a list it is evident that the tendency to people possessed of such supreme inpronounce consonants is not depen- tellectual gifts, has long remained dant on varieties of temperature or one of the speculative puzzles of hissocial progress among the earth's tory. The perfection of the Deity races. Of the inability of different formed the conceptive basis of his people to distinguish between certain existence with the earliest thinkers, consonants many singular examples as with us; yet the stories of Kronos, are given in this lecture.
Demeter, Tantalus, &c., would hardly Professor Muller enters into the be accepted into the pantheon of the question of the changes in the same lowest savage. Zenophanes, the preword which are found in dialects of cursor of Pythagoras, remarked that the same tongue, and regards such man had created his gods in his own phonetic alterations as attributable image; and Heraclitus laughed at to the action of a regular law--a fact the Homeric theology: Anaxagoras which he illustrates from what has interpreted the legends of the gods been observed to occur in the Kaffir allegorically. Socrates was a sceptic, dialects ; while the excision of letters and many of the poets and philoseen in many English words, compared sophers of a later period exposed the with the original Anglo-Saxon, such inconsistency involved in such deias lord for hlaford, lady for hlæfdgé, tific ideals. "To a logical being like he attributes to the effect of laziness, the Greek such conceptions must an attempt to economize breath, and have been utterly irrational; and want of muscular energy. Other those, indeed, who occupied themchanges of an opposite character, selves with their mythology gave from such phonetic alterations, which it three interpretations, namely, manifest an equality of vocal power, ethical, or that which supposed the he paines dialectic growth; and ac- tales of the gods, their power of recounts for the literal changes exhi- warding and punishing, was an inbited in the Latin by those formed by vention of the wise of old; physical, the Roman soldiers settled in Dacia such as that of Epicharnus, who deand still observable in the modern clared that the gods were the eleWallachians, such as p for 9, on the ments; and historical, like that of Eusupposition that the original colonizers phemerus, who resolved such myths were Oscans and Umbrians, this pe- back to the lives and actions of anVOL LXV.- Yo, I'CCLXXIV.