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in the Scotch märchen, Nicth, Nought, Nothing, is thus enabled to call to her aid "all the birds of the sky." In the same way, if you ask an Indian for a love-song, he will say that a philtre is really much more efficacious. The savage, in short, is extremely practical. His arts, music and drawing, exist not pour l'art, but for a definite purpose, as methods of getting something that the artist wants. The young lover whom Kohl knew, like the lover of Bombyca in Theocritus, believed in having an image of himself and an image of the beloved. Into the heart of the female image he thrust magic powders, and he said that this was common, lovers adding songs, "partly elegiac, partly malicious, and almost criminal forms of incantation."[1]

Among the Indo-Aryans the masaminik or incantations of the Red Man are known as mantras.[2] These are usually texts from the Veda, and are chanted over the sick and in other circumstances where magic is believed to be efficacious. Among the New Zealanders the incantations are called karakias, and are employed in actual life. There is a special karakia to raise the wind. In Maori myths the hero is very handy with his karakia. Rocks split before him, as before girls who use incantations in Kaffir and Bushman tales. He assumes the shape of any animal at will, or flies in the air, all by virtue of the karakia or incantation.[3]

Without multiplying examples in the savage belief

  1. Kitchi Gami, pp. 395, 397.
  2. Muir, Sanskrit Texts, v. 441, "Incantations from the Atharva Veda."
  3. Taylor's New Zealand; Theal's Kaffir Folk-Lore, South-African Folk-Lore Journal, passim; Shortland's Traditions of the New Zealanders, pp. 130–135.