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tiges of the Northmen. To our minds, the idea of their forgery carries with it by far the greatest improbability. · Another objection alluded to by Mr. Schoolcraft, is "the far-fetched and cabalistic interpretation of Prof. Fion Magnusen.” This objection might be sound against the conclusions of Prof. Rafn, the editor of the Antiquitates, but for the fact, which Mr. Schoolcraft does not appear to have noticed, that the interpretations of the two men, were made from different copies of the inscription ; Prof. Magnusen using the copy of 1790, and Prof. Rafn, that of 1830. Hence, though it is true that the letter of “ Professor. Magnusen recognizes the opinion of Prof. Rafn," it can hardly be said to " exhibit a synopsis of the reasons which led the learned society to its conclusions in regard to this inscription.” This is especially true of the supposed Latino-Gothic 11 (n), and the Runic Y (m), as they do not appear on the copy of 1830, used by Prof. Rafn. And the OR, by proving to be part of a name, ceased to be subject to the criticism of Prof. Magnusen. Consequently the phrase norroenis men, northern men, and the possessive or, our, as read by Prof. Magnusen, are dissipated ; and in room of them we have the name of Thorfinn.
The objection of Mr. Schoolcraft, that the Roman letters are not Runic characters (p. 444,) loses its force as soon as it is known that no one ever supposed them to be ; and hence it is evident why " they spell nothing in the ordinary Runic, either backward or forward.” (p. 445). That they are not Runic, but common letters, and that as such, they do spell something,
but have already shown of Mr. Schoolchadys; and of we The other objecther of the capric vocabul
The other objection of Mr. Schoolcraft ihat “the names of the father and mother of the captured boys; and of the chiefs of their band, are not of the Algic vocabulary," seems not to have been duly considered. These names, as given by the Northmen, are written with letters whose powers are different from those of the English. Take for example the pame of the father, given in the text, Uvæge. (Ant. pp. 162, 182. Hist. Thorf. c. 13). The readings of the different manuscripts give Ovægi, Vagi, Ægi, and Ove. Now the Icelandic u is nearly like our oo; the a answers to our ah ; and the Icelandic e is generally supplied in the Anglo-Saxon and English by w; and a after v in Icelandic, like a aster w in English is usually broad. And g in Icelandic, as well as in Anglo-Saxon, is guttural, and pronounced nearly like y in York, when it comes be
tween the letters a, e, i, or y. Putting the foregoing name, therefore, into an English dress, it would be written 00-waye; than which, nothing could be more Indian-like. In like manner the mother's name, Vethildi, or Veinhildi, becomes Wā-thel-de, or Wäne-hel-de; and the names of the chiefs Avalldania, and Avall-didia, become Ah-wall-dal-ne-ah, and Ah-wall-de-de-ah. But after all, it is natter of some uncertainty, whether these Indians were Algic, as they were not taken at Massachusetts, but “at Markland," (Hist. Thor. Karl. c. 13. pp. 161, 182), now Nova Scotia. Besides, it is very questionable, whether the orthography of the Northmen, conveys to us any true idea of the pronunciation of these words by the natives.
We have confined these remarks entirely to a consideration of what has been considered the doubtful part of the inscription ; and though it would be more than we should be justified in assuming, to say that there can be no doubt of its genuineness ; yet we feel that we are fully authorized to say, that its genuineness is more probable, than its forgery. Nor do we see, that the character of the bieroglyphics has any bearing upon this point; for if it should turn out that these were made by the Indians, it would throw no light upon the origin of the letters and numerals. Indeed it seems to us not at all unlikely, that if the Northmen graved the letters and numerals, the Indians did the rest. If the Northmen selected this rock, on which to record their possession of the country; what more natural, than that the natives should choose the same rock on which to record their expulsion from it? Why then, may it not be probable, that the portion which the Indians could not, but which the Northmen could bave made, was actually made by the Northmen, and the remainder by the Indians ? This supposition will account for the fact, that the letters and numerals occupy the central part of the inscription, without interfering with the hieroglyphics, and affords a sufficient reason for the tradition among the Indians, at the time the country was setiled by the whites, concerning the people of another nation, which there fought the Indians with great success. While, therefore, we are not fully committed to its genuineness, we would not reject it without sufficient cause ; for if genuine, it is certainly an important relic of antiquity.
Review or SelecTIONS FROM GERMAN LITERATURE.
Selections from German Literature. By B. B. Edwards and E.
A. Park, Professors, Theol. Sem., Andover. Andover and New York : Gould, Newman & Saxton, 1839. pp. 472.
The value of such a work as this is not to be measured by the attractiveness of its topics, nor merely by the importance of the ideas it may contain. The thoughts which a book suggests are often of higher worth than those it expresses; and often too the form of a thought is worth more than its substance. To one who has been accustomed to contemplate the truths of science or of morals as pure logical abstractions, and who thus keeps them alien and distant from his life, let the same truths be presented by another in whom they are the product of meditative inquiry, and have grown up in his heart po less than in his understanding, and these same truths, which before had been barren and unfruitful, shall become living andlife-giving. The abstraction shall become real, the phantom shall put on true armor, and fight side by side with him in the battles of daily life.
A true thought is an expression of one's entire humanity. Not the understanding alone forms it, nor reason, nor imagination. Each has its part in this mysterious generation, and every sentiment and affection aids to control and determine it. Our judgments are not simple but complicated of many influences, formed by many observations and the experience of years, lighted by every gleam of sunshine that has cheered, and shaded by every cloud that has darkened our life. The death of a friend may mingle hyssop in our cup of cheer, and long poverty make our life a wearisome pilgrimage ; and the afflicted shall grow sad and murmur over his untasted banquet, and the wantstricken shall curse an unequal Providence; yet the mourner but yesterday saw only blessing in the order of the world, and the rich of the last year praised Him that giveth liberally. If our judgment of these high doctrines may be changed by the changes of our outward state, much more will our opinion of
de CẢ true understand part in t
lesser things be swayed and varied by passion and pride, by love and fear. The true history of a thought then is the history of a life. He only can think nobly who lives nobly. Not more surely does the spice plant of the tropics wither and die among the snows of Siberia, than do generous plans and lofty purposes shrink and shrivel in the bleakness of a beariless mind. The sins and negligences of earliest life have not lost their power till its close. They fasten on him who neglects and sins, like the sloth on the stag's haunches. So the virtues of youth make easier the toils of manhood, and the obedient child becomes the well-governed citizen. And these occult influences and effects are continually disclosing themselves to the eye of the wise observer and skilful interpreter of men. Hence to such an one, conversation is more ihan a mere exchange of notions. It is the revealing of a mind, a bringing to light of its peculiar and hidden experience. When a great mind speaks to us, or one that has its individuality, its own peculiar impulses, and has grown by its own law and not fashioned itself after the model of another, we are every man of us aware of the power of the charm. We feel moreover the thought which it ulters to be valuable, not merely because it is true, but because it bears evidence of a natural growth in that mind, and partakes of bis sympathies and relations; and we admire it, not because it is expressed with precision or in familiar terms, but because it is thrown out spontaneously, and is the natural language of that mind. We are pleased to see how a simple thought will be recast in the glow of an original conception, or a forgotten truism become living and graceful when it has dwell in the heart. The varying character and experience of men, as they modify the form in which their conceptions are expressed, modify also the truth conceived. Truth doubtless is independent of us, and stands forever in the clearness of its own light. Yet if our eye be not clear, the truth, though bright, is dim to us. To the full apprehension of many subjects not only is deep thought necessary, but a peculiar life. The inward peace of christian love, and the calm assurance of faith are hardly intelligible to the sensualist and the worldling. The shortness of life cannot be felt in the flush of youth, but how deep its meaning to him of fourscore! We need the painter's eye to comprehend the work of his art. It does not then become us to weigh every man's sentiments in the scales of a mere judgment. When he speaks to us, we look to see not merely what he says, but what he is. A single sentence not only gives us a new opinion, but teaches us how he has lived and what he has been. And this is a better knowledge, for it is knowledge of man. It comes to us not in his words, but his entire character and action convey it through our sympathies with bim, and it is based on our cominon experience and common nature. Therefore we delight to converse with strangers and foreigners. We hope to acquire new thoughts, but we more wish to see how things familiar to us will strike them. We gain a new point of observation and the ludicrous becomes grave and the grave ludicrous. As in matters of daily life, so in the topics of speculative thought. The conceptions of nature in the mind of a savage may be of as much value to a philosopher, as a true theory of the world to the savage. Goldsmith's Citizen of the World is no less instructive than entertaining.
A communion with other minds is always profitable if we are on our guard as to the influences we shall receive. The best fellowship doubtless is with that of the strong and the pure. Still, we would not always be grave. We would laugh sometimes at our neighbor's witty and peculiar humors. A truly and well developed man must have passed through every variety of experience, and may learn from the companionship of fools, as well as from the wisdom of the wise. The contempt of Voltaire shall teach him an useful lesson, for he must know the barrenness as well as the fulness of humanity. Were we, however, to select one characteristic which attracts us more than any other, in friends, and books are friends, we should name, not undervaluing strength and purity, earnestness. We would have them indifferent in nothing. They should be fully possessed by whatever subject they are engaged in, be it chasing beetles or constructing a theory of the universe. Earnestness implies a moral appreciation no less than intellectual energy and purpose. It is a gentle but steadfast enthusiasm. Seeing with the heart, it magnifies, but it holds fast. This trait, though commonly displayed in particular attachments, is usually accompanied by what may be called an universal sympathy, which admires and loves truth and beauty everywhere. This is the spirit of true scholarship. As truth is a crystal of many sides, it sees them all; as it is a pervading principle, it rejoices in every manifestation.
The same principles of mutual influence and affinity apply to the community of nations, as well as to the fraternity of individ