Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 34.djvu/699

This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.

between the Berber and the Basque languages, ethnologists would be inclined to class them together. The Iberians, however, perhaps from their more northern and rugged abode, seem to have been a sturdier race, and more stubborn in maintaining their independence or reasserting it after a defeat. They occupied apparently the Spanish Peninsula, the greater part of France, the British Islands, Corsica, Sardinia, and probably a large portion of Italy, where they seem to have been mingled with the Semitic Pelasgians. The Aryan conquest, which in their case was incomplete, made little change in their character, except in Italy. In the far west the Celts have always shown the genuine Iberian character—the strong family affections, the love of home, the cheerfulness under all troubles, the sense of personal and tribal independence, and the jealous impatience of arbitrary power. To these traits the Aryans added in Italy a stronger infusion than was perhaps found anywhere else of their warlike and disciplined energy, and of their tendency to barbarity in war and to the infliction of cruel punishments in time of peace.

When the Aryan invaders entered the northern and central portions of Europe, they found that region occupied by tribes of the Uralian or Finnish type. On this point, and on the general question of the early peopling of Europe, I may cite the opinion pronounced, after many years of study, by one of the most eminent anthropologists of Europe, whose conclusions will be admitted by all to be entitled to the greatest weight—M. de Quatrefages. Referring in one of his recent works—"Hommes Fossiles et Homines Sauvages"—to the "Finnish group," he observes: "This group has for European ethnogeny a very great importance. We know to what hypotheses, to what discussions, it has given rise. Both have been often premature, because the facts that were needed to establish the conclusions were not yet discovered. The 'Finnish theory,' to use the expression of Latham, is certainly wrong when it regards the whole of Europe as having been inhabited, before the arrival of the Aryans, by a single race, extending from Gibraltar to the Arctic Ocean—a race of whose existence the Finns would be merely the evidence. It is in the right when it admits the existence of a pre-Aryan population. This is a fact which can not now be questioned. We may affirm, moreover, that this population was not homogeneous; that it numbered several very distinct races; that these races have not been annihilated; that they have borne an important part in the formation of the existing populations, and that, in certain cases at least, they constituted in them the preponderant element." It is, of course, highly satisfactory to find that the conclusions to which linguists have been led by philological data are thus fully confirmed by the minute and careful studies of the physical types of European