reach the clouds. Irritated at the daring attempt of Xelhua, they hurled fire on the pyramid. Numbers of the workmen perished; the work was discontinued, and the monument was dedicated to Quetzalcoatl, the god of the air."
I have said, that up to the present time none of the arguments employed to prove the descent of the American aborigines, or of any part and distinct portion of them, from particular people of the ancient world, have seemingly gained universal belief Nevertheless, it must be admitted, that the light thrown by late researches, and the collection of evidence from various quarters in favour of the plausibility of the theory that the nations of Central America at least are of Hebrew origin, is of a character calculated to make the unprejudiced pause, in hazarding too positive an opinion. As to myself, all I can say is, that when I knew less of the subject, I felt inclined to throw more ridicule upon the idea than I dare do now; at the same time that I would not deem the question decided, despite the opinion of many laborious and enthusiastic writers, from the time of Las Casas, Sahagun, Boturini, and their cotemporaries and successors, down to those of Ethan Smith, Mrs. Simon, and Lord Kingsbury, till it be clearly demonstrated that those most remarkable analogies which are ably set forth in these works, are not traceable to the times which immediately succeeded the deluge, and preceded the dispersion.
Well may the opinion of the world hang in suspense with regard to every doubtful question in which any part of the chosen people of God is implicated. The separate existence of the Jews as a distinct people, even to this day, is a miracle which none can question; and wherever the descendants of the lost Ten Tribes are banished—to the east, or to the west—we may firmly believe, that, being partakers of the same striking promises with the Jews, the same God who has promised to
- See Humboldt's Res., i., 97.