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À description of the English province of Carolana, be
the Spaniards called Fiorida, and by the French La Louisiane. As also of the great and famous river Meschasebe or Mississipi, the five vast navigable Lakes of fresh water, and the parts adjacent. Together wilh an account of the commodities of the growth and production of the said Province. And a preface containing some considerations on the consequences of the French making seltlements there. By Daniel Coxe, Esq. London, printed for B. Cowse, at the Rose and Crown in St. Paul's Churchyard, 1722, 8vo. pp. 180,
with a map
This is a crude performance, drawn up from various journals and voyages, to impress the publick with the great importance of the region described, and to niake them jealous of its occupation by the French. Under this name of Carolana, was comprehended the present State of Georgia, the two Floridas, and Louisiana; and this whole territory was claimed by Dr. Coxe, the father of the author, as proprietor of it under the crown. In the appendix is given a document, dated Whitehall, December 21st, 1690, and signed by seven members of the Privy Council and law Vo. Il. No. 4.
officers, in which having examined the claim by order of the ministry, they report to the king as their opinion, that Dr. Coxe is entitled to this province ! Probably there is no other instance on record of any private individual pretending to such an extensive property.
Recherches philosophiques sur les Americains, ou · memoi
res interressants pour servir à l'histoire de l'espece humaine. Par M. de Pau. Nouvelle edition, augmentée d'un dissertation critique par Dom. Pernety, et de la defense de l'auteur des recherches contre cette dissertation. Studio disposta fideli. à Berlin, 1774, 3 vols.
12mo. pp. 916. Examen des recherches philosophiques sur l'Amerique et
les Americains, el de la defense de cet ouvrage, a Berlin, 1771, 2 vols. 12 mo. pp. 921.
This work of M. de Pau on the aborigines of the American continent, excited much attention at a time when the character of the Indians was imperfectly known; and it was subject to all the exaggeration which the spirit of party can produce, denied by one side as being absolutely brutal and vicious, and extolled by the other as possessing every virtue. The question is now well understood, and their virtues and vices fairly appreciated. Historians and philosophers will hereafter be able to speak of this species of men with accuracy, when the race shall have become extinct, which will probably happen at no very distant period.
M. de Pau imagined a very absurd theory, which he does not clearly explain ; but the basis of it seems to be, that the continent of America was recently recovered from the waters-that its climate was pestilential—its productions diminutive and feeble in everything but noxious plants, insects and reptiles, which were produced in frightful abundance by the stagnant waters, and sour, rank juices of nature in an unripe state. To support this strange theory, he uniformly asserts, that every European production speedily deteriorated; plants, animals and men were all siunted or destroyed, and the latter both morally and physically degraded. The savages he considers infinitely below every other species of men, even Tartars, Laplanders, Hottentots, or Negroes; and the descendants of Europe
ans as not much superiour to them. To call a Spaniard,
born in America, an American, is so cruel an insult to • him, that you may be sure beforehand, that he will never 'pardon the person who dares make him such a reproach: The Portugese, French and English Creoles, consider 'themselves equally offended if they are called Americans : * so much do they hold themselves superiour to men of * that race, and indeed they are so in many respects, but * not so much as they imagine.'
A curious instance of his rashness in denying any fact that makes against his theory, and positive manner of assuring his readers that nothing of the kind existed, occurs in regard to the famous hieroglyphical inscription at Dighton, in Massachusetts.- Permit me to undeceive you further
about another fact,* equally false, to which the memoir of the French academician has given rise: it has been pub'lished throughout Europe, that there had been found in
the centre of New-England, a stone which contained an *inscription in Thibetian characters, which is, as you know, 'the country where the Grand Lama resides. After having procured all the information possible, about this pre• tended monument, I can boldly assure you, that no in* scription in any character whatever has ever been discovered in the whole extent of America, from the country of the Esquimaux to the extremity of Terra del Fuego. * This New England rock is like the medal of Julius Caesar, which was said to have been dug up among the sav
ages called Cesareans, in the neighbourhood of Patagonia. * From which you may judge to what degree they have . dared to assert the most incredible things, to support the • most absurd systems.'
This work of De Pau's discovers a good deal of research into the history of different nations, but the most perverse use is made of his materials, and his ignorance of the real character of the Indians is most profound. The work is written in a style of petulance and sarcasm, often adopted by ihose who have been called philosophers in modern times, though nothing can be more opposed to the true spirit of philosophy.
Dom. Pernety, a Benedictine, who had been in one or two provinces of South America, attacked De Pau, in
* The other was the voyage of the Grand Lama to America.