On the question whether the arts of civilization can be lost, see Arthur Mitchell, Past In the Present, 219: Rude art is often the debasement of a higher, instead of being the earlier; the rudest art in a nation may coexist with the highest; cave-life may accompany high civilization., where Burial of a cock for epilepsy and sacrifice of a bull, were until very recently extant; these are illustrations from modern Scotland. Certain arts have unquestionably been lost, as glassmaking and iron working in Assyria (see Mivart, referred to above). The most ancient men do not appear to have been inferior to the latest, either physically or intellectually. Rawlinson: ?The explorers who have dug deep into the Mesopotamian mounds, and have ransacked the tombs of Egypt, have come upon no certain traces of savage man in those regions which a widespread tradition makes the cradle of the human race.? The Tyrolese peasants show that a rude people may be moral, and a very simple people maybe highly intelligent. See football, Recent Origin of Man, 386-449; Schliemann, Troy and her Remains, 274.
Mason, Origins of Invention, 110, 124, 128 ? ?There is no evidence that a stone age ever existed in some regions. In Africa, Canada, and perhaps Michigan, the metal age was as old as the stone age.? An illustration of the Mathematical powers of the savage is given by hey. A. E. Hunt in an account of the native arithmetic of Murray Islands, Torres Straits. ?Netat? (one) and ?neis? (two) are the only numerals, higher numbers being described by combinations of these, as ?neis-netat? for three, neis-i-neis? for four, etc. or by reference to one of the fingers, elbows or other parts of the body. A total of thirty-one could be counted by the latter method. Beyond this all numbers were ?many,? as this was the limit reached in counting before the introduction of English numerals, now in general use in the islands.
Shaler, Interpretation of Nature, 171 ? ?It is commonly supposed that the direction of the movement [in the variation of species] is ever upward. The fact is on the contrary that in a large number of cases, perhaps in the aggregate in more than half, the change gives rise to a form which, by all the canons by which we determine relative rank, is to be regarded as regressive or degradable. Species, genera, families and orders have all, like the individuals of which they are composed, a period of decay in which the gain won by infinite toil and pains is altogether lost in the old age of the group.? Shaler goes on to say that in the matter of variation successes are to failures as 1 to 100,000 and if man be counted the solitary distinguished success, then the proportion is something like 1 to 100,000,000. No species that passes away is ever reinstated. If man were now to disappear, there is no reason to believe that by any process of
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