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[154] CHAPTER X.


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HE Montagnet Savages give the name Manitou to all Nature superior to man, good or bad. This

is why, when we speak of God, they sometimes call him the good Manitou; and, when we speak of the Devil, they call him the bad Manitou. Now all those who have any special acquaintance with the Manitou, be he good or bad, are called among them Man[i]touisiouekhi." And inasmuch as these persons know only the bad Manitou, that is, the Devil, we call them Sorcerers. Not that the Devil communicates with them as obviously as he does with the Sorcerers and Magicians [155] of Europe; but we have no other name to give them, since they even do some of the acts of genuine sorcerers,-as, to kill one another by charms, or wishes, and imprecations, by the abetment of the Manitou, by poisons which they concoct. And this is so common among them, at least in their own opinion, that I hardly ever see any of them die who does not think he has been bewitched. This is why they have no other Physicians than the Sorcerers, whom they employ to break the spells by which they think they are held. In fact, they nearly all die of consumption, becoming so thin that they are nothing but skin and bone when they are borne to the grave. Hence it arises that these sorcerers are greatly feared, and that one would not dare offend

terre. D'icy prouient que ces forciers font extrémement redoutez, & qu'on ne les oferoit fascher pource qu'ils peuuent, à ce qu'ils croyent, tuer les hommes par leur art. Ils font auffi grandement recherchez, pour autant qu'ils ont pouuoir, à ce qu'ils difent, d'ofter la maladie qu'on leur à donnee. C'est chofe pitoyable de voir comme le Diable fe iouë de ces peuples, lefquels s'eftonnent voyans que nous prouoquons & defions fi aifément leurs Sorciers. Ils attribuent cela à vne plus grande cognoiffance du Manitou. Ils croyent qu'il y a deformàis [sc. des hommes] parmy [156] eux, qui n'ont aucune communication auec le Diable. Ce font des Iongleurs qui font les mefmes fingeries que les Sorciers pour tirer des autres quelques prefens. Comme nous crions certain iour contre la malice des Sorciers, l'vn des Sauuages qui estoyent presens & qu'on tenoit pour tel, dit tout haut, pour moy ie ne fçay point ces malices: mon pere battoit fon tambour aupres des malades, ie l'ay veu faire, ie fay comme luy: Voyla toute la finesse que i'y fçay. Ces pauures Barbares mourans tous les iours, difent qu'il n'y a plus de vray Man[i]touïsiou parmy eux, c'est à dire de vray Sorcier.

C'est l'office du Sorcier d'interpreter les fonges, d'expliquer le chant, ou le rencontre des oifeaux. Les Romains auoyent les Augures qui faifoyent la mefme chose. Ils difent que quand on fonge qu'on a veu beaucoup de chair d'Orignac, que c'est signe de vie: mais fi on a des fonges d'Ours, c'eft figne de mort. I'ay defia dit plufieurs fois que ces Charlatans chantent & battent leurs tambours pour guerir les malades, pour tuer des ennemis en guerre & prendre des animaux à la chaffe. Pigarouich, c'est le Sor

them, because they can, the people believe, kill men by their arts. They are also greatly sought after, inasmuch as they can, it is said, remove disease which has been inflicted by them. It is a pitiable sight to see how the Devil makes sport of these people, who are astonished when they see how easily we challenge and defy their Sorcerers. They attribute it to a better acquaintance with the Manitou. They believe that there are men among [156] them who have no communication with the Devil. These are Jugglers who perform the same apish tricks as the Sorcerers, in order to get a few presents from others. One day, when we were inveighing against the malice of the Sorcerers, one of the Savages present, who was regarded as such, exclaimed, "As for me, I know nothing about these tricks; my father beat his drum near the sick; I have seen him do it, and I do as he did; this is all the artifice I understand." These poor Barbarians, perishing every day, say that there is no longer any real Man[i]touisiou among them, that is to say, no genuine Sorcerer.

It is the office of the Sorcerer to interpret dreams, to explain the singing of birds, or encounters with them. The Romans had their Augurs, who did the same thing. They say that when one dreams he has seen a great deal of Moose meat, it is a sign of life; but if one dreams of a Bear, it is a sign of death. I have already said several times that these Charlatans sing and beat their drums to cure the sick, to kill their enemies in war, and to capture animals in the hunt. Pigarouich, the Sorcerer of whom I have spoken above, sang to us [157] once the song he uses when he intends to go hunting. He uttered only these words, Iagoua mou itoutaoui ne e-é, which he re

cier dont i'ay parlé cy-deffus, nous chanta [157] vne fois la chanfon qu'il dit voulant aller à la chaffe. I1 ne profera que ces paroles, Tagoua mou itoutaouj ne e-é, qu'il reïtera plusieurs fois auec diuers tons fombres & pefans, quoy qu'affez doux à l'oreille. Nous luy demandafmes pourquoy il chantoit cela pour prendre des animaux. I'ay veu, dit-il, en fonge ceste chanfon, c'est pourquoy ie l'ay retenuë & m'en fuis feruy depuis. Il nous pria fort de luy enseigner ce qu'il falloit chanter pour guerir les malades, & pour avoir bonne chaffe, nous promettans de l'obferuer de poinct en poinct.

Voicy l'vne des façons dont fe feruent les mefchans pour tuer leurs compatriotes. Quelqu'vn m'a dit qu'ils s'eftoyent autresfois voulu feruir de ces diableries contre les François, mais qu'ils n'auoyent peu les faire malades. Si le Chreftien fçauoit fa dignité, il en feroit grande eftime. Vn Sorcier voulant tuer quelqu'vn entre dans fon Tabernacle, fait venir les Genies du iour, ou ceux qui font le iour: ils les nomment ainsi, & nous les appellons des Diables. Eftans entrez il leur enuoye querir l'ame de celuy, ou de ceux qu'ils veulent tuer. Si ces perfonnes font d'autre Nation, ils changent leur nom, de peur que leurs parens en ayans le vent, [158] prennent vengeance du forcier. Ces Genies apportent ces pauures ames en forme de pierres, ou d'vne autre façon. Alors le forcier les frappe à coups d'efpees, ou de haches: en forte que le fang en decoule fi fort, que l'efpee, ou la hache en demeure toute teinte & toute rouge. Cela fait, celuy dont on a frappé l'ame tombe malade & languit iufques à la mort. Voilà comme ces pauures gens font abufez des Demons. Quand vn Sauuage

peated several times in different tones, grave and heavy, although pleasant enough to the ear. We asked him why he sang this to capture animals. "I learned," said he, "this song in a dream; and that is why I have preserved and used it since." He requested us earnestly to teach him what must be sung to cure the sick, and to have a good chase, promising us to observe it exactly.

Here is one of the methods employed by the wicked ones to kill their countrymen. Some one has told me that they had formerly tried to use these deviltries against the French, but that they could not make them sick. If the Christian realized his own dignity he would hold it in high esteem. A Sorcerer, wishing to kill some one, enters his Tent and summons the Genii of the light, or those who make the light; they call them thus, and we call them Devils. When they arrive, he sends them after the soul of him, or of those, whom they wish to kill. If these persons belong to another Nation, they change their name, lest their relatives, getting wind of the affair, [158] take vengeance on the sorcerer. The Genii bring these poor souls in the form of stones, or in some other shape. Then the sorcerer strikes them with blows of javelins or hatchets, so hard that the blood runs down from them, so copiously that the javelin or the hatchet remains all stained and red with it. When this is done, the one whose soul had been struck falls sick, and languishes unto death. See how these poor people are deluded by the Demons. When one Savage hates another, he employs a sorcerer to kill him in this way; but they say that if the sick man happens to dream who it is that has bewitched him, he will get well and the sorcerer will die. These

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