Payne Buckner H. - The negro

Author : Payne Buckner H. (Ariel)
Title : The negro What is his ethnological status ? Is he the progeny of ham ? Is he a descendant of Adam and Eve ? Has he a soul ? Or is he a beast in god's nomenclature ? What is his status as fixed by god in creation ? What is his relation to the white race ?
Year : 1867

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What is his Ethnological Status? Is he the progeny of Ham? Is he a descendant of Adam and Eve? Has he a Soul? or is he a Beast, in God's nomenclature? What is his Status as fixed by God in creation? What is his relation to the White race? The intelligent will see at once, that the question of slavery,either right or wrong, is not involved in this caption for examination: nor is that question discussed. The points are purely ethnological and Biblical, and are to be settled alone by the Bible and by concurrent history, and by facts existing outside of the Bible and of admitted truth. We simply say in regard to ourself, in this day of partisan strife, religious and political, that we take no part in any such party strife, and that it is many years since we cast our last vote. This much, to prevent evil surmises. With this understood independence of all parties, we begin by saying, that the errors and mistakes, in understanding the true position of the negro, as God intended it to be in his order of creation, are all traceable to, and arise out of two assumptions. The learned men of the past and present age, the clergy and others have assumed as true: 1. That the negro is a descendant of Ham, the youngest son of Noah. This is false and untrue. 2. That the negro is a descendant of, or the progeny of, Adam and Eve. This is also false and untrue. These questions, or rather these assumptions, of the learned and unlearned world, are Biblical, and are to be settled by the Bible alone, whether they be true or false, and by outside concurrent history —and of facts known to exist, and admitted to be true by the intelligent, and as they may serve to elucidate any statement or account given in the Bible. We shall have frequent use of the term, "logic of facts," and now explain what we mean by it. It is this: If one sees another with a gun in his hands, and that he shoots a man and kills him, and the bullet is found afterward in the dead man's body, that although we did not see the bullet put into the gun, yet we know by this "logic of facts," that it was in the gun. It is the strongest evidence of what is true, of any testimony that can be offered. It will be admitted by all, and contradicted by none, that we now have existing on earth, two races of men, the white and the black. We beg here to remind our readers, that when they see the word men, or man, italicised, we do not use it as applying to Adam and his race. But we may sometimes use these words in the general and accepted sense of them, but it is only for the purpose of getting before the minds of our readers, the propositions of the learned of this age, exactly as they would wish them to be stated. We will now describe, ethnologically, the prominent characteristics and differences of these two races as we now find them. The white race have long, straight hair, high foreheads, high noses, thin lips, and white skins: the olive and sunburnt color, where the other characteristics are found, belong equally to the white race. The negro or black race, are woolly or kinky-headed, low foreheads, flat noses, thick-lipped, and have a black skin. This description of the two races is (though not all their differences), full enough for the fair discussion of their respective stations in God's order of creation, and will be admitted to be just and true, as far as it goes, by all candid and learned men. Therefore the reader will observe, that when either of the terms, white, black or negro, is used, referring to race, that we refer to the one or the other, as the case may be, as is here set forth in describing the two races. In God's nomenclature of the creation, his order stands thus: 1. Birds; 2. Fowls; 3. Creeping things; 4. Cattle; 5. Beasts; 6. Adam and Eve. We shall use this, but without any intended disparagement to any, as it is the best and highest authority. Before proceeding with the examination of the subjects involved in the caption to this paper, we will for a moment, notice the prevailing errors, now existing in all their strength, and held by the clergy, and many learned men, to be true, which are: 1. Ham's name, which they allege, in Hebrew, means black; 2. The curse denounced against him, that a servant of servants should he be unto his brethren; and that this curse, was denounced against Ham, for the accidental seeing of his father Noah naked—that this curse was to do so, and did change him, so that instead of being long, straight-haired, high forehead, high nose, thin lips and white, as he then was, and like his brothers Shem and Japheth, he was from that day forth, to be kinky-headed, low forehead, thick lipped and black skinned; and that his name, and this curse, effected all this. And truly, to answer their assumptions, it must have done so, or the case would not fit the negro, as we now find him. And they adduce in proof, that Ham's name in Hebrew (tCHam), means black, the present color of the negro, and that therefore Ham is the progenitor of the black race. They seem to forget, or rather, they ignore the fact, that the Bible nowhere says, that such a curse, or that any curse whatever, was denounced against Ham by his father Noah; but that this curse, with whatever it carried with it, was hurled at Canaan, the youngest son of Ham. But it is of little consequence, in the settlement of these great questions, which was intended, whether Ham or his youngest son Canaan. But if it be of any value in supporting their theory, this meaning of Ham's name in Hebrew, in designating his color to be black, and black it must be, to answer the color of the negro, then the names of Shem and Japheth should be of equal value, in determining their color; for each of the brothers received their respective names a hundred years or more before the flood, and were all the children of the same father and same mother. Now, if Shem and Japheth's names do not describe their color (which they do not), upon what principles of logical philology or grammar, can Ham's name determine his color? How many of this day are there who are called, black, white, brown, and olive, all of whom are white, and without the slightest suspicion, that the name indicated the color of their respective owners. Is it not strange, that intelligent and learned men, should be compelled to rely on such puerilities, as arguments and truly supporting such tremendous conclusions? But they say it was his name in conjunction with the curse, that made him and his descendants the negro we now find on earth. It is an axiom in logic, that, that which is not in the constituent, can not be in the constituted. We have seen, that the making of Ham a negro, is not in the name, which is one of the constituents, now let us see, if it is in the other constituent, the curse. Now the curse and name changed Ham, if their theory be true, from a white man, to a black negro. If the curse, were capable of effecting such results, it is to be found in the word curse, and not in the words, that a servant of servants should he be, as he and his descendants could, as readily be servants, white as black, and he was already white, and no necessity to make him black, to be a servant. If this effect on Ham, is to be found in the word curse, it will then be necessary, for the advocates of the assumption, to show, that such were its usual results, whenever that word was used; for unless such were its common effects, when used by God himself, by men of God, by patriarchs and by prophets, then we ask, on what grounds, if any there be, it is, that they assert, that it did produce this effect, in this instance, by Noah on Ham and his descendants? We do not question or doubt, that Canaan, was denounced in the curse, pronounced by Noah, that he should be a servant of servants; but whether Ham or Canaan alone is meant, is not material to the questions at issue, except in this view; but the advocates of such being its effect, must show, that such, at least was its effect previous to, and after Noah used it; and if they fail in this, that necessarily, this part of their argument is also a total failure. Let us look into the Bible. God cursed our first parents. Did this curse kink their hair, flatten their skulls, blacken their skin and flatten their nose? If it did, then Noah was sadly mistaken and these gentlemen too, in supposing that it was Noah's curse, that accomplished all this, for it was already done for the whole race—and long before, by God himself. God cursed the serpent. Did the curse produce this effect on him? He cursed Cain—did it affect his skin, his hair, his forehead, his nose or his lips? These curses were all pronounced by God himself and produced no such effects. But we proceed and take up the holy men of God, the patriarchs and prophets, and see what their curses produced. Did the curse of Jacob, produce this effect on Simeon and Levi? did it produce this effect on the man who would make a graven image? did it produce this effect on the man who would rebuild Jericho? did it produce this effect on those, who maketh the blind to wander out of the way? did it produce this effect on those, who perverteth the judgment of the stranger, the fatherless and the widow? Cum multis aliis. It did not. But if it did produce this effect in these cases, then when we read, that Christ died to redeem us from the curse, are we to understand, that he died to redeem us from a kinky head, flat nose, thick lips and a black skin? But such curses, never having produced such effects, when pronounced by God, by patriarch, by prophet, or by any holy man of God before or since, then we inquire to know, on what principles of interpretation, grammar or logic it is, that it can so mean in this case of Noah? There are no words in the curse, that express, or even imply such effects. Then in the absence of all such effects, following such curses, and as they are narrated in the Bible, whether pronounced by God or man; and there being nothing in the language beside to sustain it, and if true, Ham's posterity must be shown now, as its truthful witnesses, from this, our day, back to the flood or to Ham; and which can not be done—and if this can not be done, then all arguments and assertions, based on such assumptions, that Ham was the father of the negro or black race, are false; and if false, then the negro is in no sense, the descendant of Ham; and therefore, he must have been in the ark, and as he was not one of Noah's family, that he must have entered it in some capacity, or relation to the other beasts or cattle. For that he did enter the ark is plain from the fact, that he is now here, and not of the family or progeny of Ham. And no one has ever suspicioned either Shem or Japheth of being the father of the negro; therefore he must have come out of the ark, and he could not come out, unless he had previously entered it; and if he entered it, that he must have existed before the flood, and that, too, just such negro as we have now, and consequently not as a descendant of Adam and Eve; and if not the progeny of Adam and Eve, that he is inevitably a beast, and as such, entered the ark, though having the form of man, and man he is, being so named by Adam. Such is the logic, and such are the conclusions to which their premises lead, if legitimately carried out; and by which it is plainly seen, that the position assumed by the learned of the present and past ages—that the present negroes are the descendants of Ham, and were made so by his name, or by the curse of his father—is false in fact, and but an unwarranted assumption at best. But while this conclusion is inevitable, it also reveals to us another sad fact, that the good men of our own race (the white), though learned and philanthropic, exhibit a weakness, alas! too common in this our day, that anything they wish to believe or think will be popular, that it is very easy to convert the greatest improbabilities into the best grounds of their faith. The word used by God, used by patriarch and by prophet, is the same word used by Noah. If the word thus used by God, and by holy men, did not produce the effect as is charged by these men, how can the same word, when used by Noah, do it? And yet, on these assumptions, the faith of more than half the world seems to be now based. To expose these cobweb fabrics, called by some reason, on this subject, and Christian philanthropy by others, in which are involved, such tremendous conclusions, for weal or for wo, of so large a portion of the biped creation, that we feel like apologizing to our readers, for answering such learned ignorance, blindness or weakness. But the meaning of Ham's name in Hebrew is not primarily black. Its primary meaning is: 1. Sunburnt; 2. swarthy; 3. dark; 4. black—and its most unusual meaning. Having now disposed of these fancies, for they are nothing better, of the effects of Ham's name, and Noah's curse, in making him a negro; and having examined them, for the purpose of allowing on what flimsy grounds this mightiest of structures of air-built theories rests, and for this purpose only, as what we have said about them is not connected with, nor germain to the way we intend to pursue, in investigating the questions forming the caption to this paper. But having now disposed of them, we take up our own subject. The reader will bear in mind the description we have given respectively of the white and black races. The first question to which we now invite attention is: Do the characteristics which we have given of the white race, belong equally, to all three of the sons of Noah—Shem, Ham and Japheth, and their descendants? If they do, then the black race, belong to, and have since the flood at least, belonged to another and totally different race of men. Now to our question: Do the characteristics, which we have given of the white race, belong equally to the three sons of Noah and their descendants alike? We will begin with Noah himself first. The Bible says of Noah, that he was perfect in his generation. We will not stop to criticise the Hebrew translated "generation," for any English scholar on reading the verse in which it occurs, will see at once, that to make sense, it should have been genealogy. Then Noah was perfect in his genealogy— he was a preacher of righteousness—he was the husband of one wife, who was also perfect in her genealogy; by this one wife, he had three sons, all born about one hundred years before the flood, and all three of them married, before the flood, to women who were perfect also in their genealogies. Ordinarily speaking, this little statement of facts, undenied by all, and undeniable, would settle at least this question, that whatever the color of one might be, the others would be the same color—if one were black, all would be black—if one were white, all would be white. Out of this arises the question, what was the color of these three brothers—were they and their descendants black or white? We will begin with Shem, so as to find his race now on earth, to see if they are white or black. The Bible tells us where he went, and where his descendants settled, and what countries they occupied, until the days of our Saviour, who was of Shem's lineage after the flesh. From the days of the Saviour down to the present day, we see the Jews, the descendants of Shem, in every country, and see they belong to the white race, which none will pretend to deny—that they were so before, and after the flood, and have continued to be so to the present time, is unquestionably true. We know then, on Biblical authority, with mathematical certainty, that they are not negroes, either before, at, nor since the flood, but white. We next take up Japheth. We know where he went, and what countries his descendants peopled, with equal certainty and on equal authority—and all outside concurrent history, equally clearly prove, that Japheth's descendants peopled Europe, whence they have spread over all the world. That they too belong to the white race, is also unquestioned, nor doubted by any that have eyes to see. That they were so before, and at the flood, and not negroes then, nor since, is equally undoubted and indisputable. We have not taken the trouble of showing step by step, where those two brothers went, and what countries they peopled seriatim, because they are admitted by all, learned and unlearned, to be and to have done just what is here stated in spreading over the world. It was, therefore, unnecessary to incumber this paper, by proving that which none disputes. This being so, then two of the three brothers, are known certainly, to be of the white race, and not of the negro, either before or after the flood. We now take up the youngest brother, Ham. The evidence establishing the fact, that he too, and his descendants belong to the white race, with long, straight hair, high forehead, high noses and thin lips, is if possible still stronger, than that of either of his brothers; if indeed anything can, in human conception, be stronger than that, which is of perfect strength, and if this is true, then Ham can not be the father of the negro. As in the cases of the other two brothers, the Bible tells us where Ham, and his descendants went, and what countries they peopled, and where his race may be found at this day; and which likewise, all contemporaneous history abundantly testifies, and shows that they are of the white race, and were so before the flood, and from the flood continued so, and yet continue so to the present time; and that not one of them, is of the negro race of this day. We will, in establishing the truths of the above declarations, take up two of Ham's sons and trace them and their descendants, from the flood to the present time, and show what they were, and what they are down to this day. These two sons of Ham, whose posterity we propose to trace, and show that they now belong to the white race, are Mizraim and Canaan, the second and the youngest of his sons. The families of all of the sons can be traced from the flood to the present day, but we presume two are sufficient, and that they be white; and we have selected Canaan intentionally and for a purpose that will be seen hereafter. Canaan was denounced by Noah, that he should be a servant of servants to his brethren, and if it turns out, in this investigation, as we know it will, that they belong to the white race, it will satisfactorily settle this question, that the curse of Noah did not make him and his descendants the black negro we now find on earth, much less Ham, who was not so cursed. The Bible plainly tells us, that the country now called Egypt, was settled by Mizraim, the second son of Ham, and was peopled by his descendants; that Mizraim, the second son of Ham, and grandson of Noah, gave his name to the country; that they called it the land of Mizraim, and by which name it is still known, to the present day, by the descendants of its ancient inhabitants; that they built many magnificent cities on the Nile—among them, the city of Thebes, one of the largest and most magnificent in its architecture, and the grandeur of its monuments and temples, the world ever saw. Its ruins at the present day, are of surpassing magnificence and grandeur. The city was named Thebes, to commemorate the Ark, that saved Noah, the grandfather of Mizraim, from the flood; the name of the Ark in Hebrew, being Theba. Then we take it for granted, all will admit, that what is now called Egypt, was settled by Mizraim, the son of Ham, and grandson of Noah. The Bible, and outside concurrent history, abundantly prove that he and his descendants, held, occupied and ruled over Egypt, and continued in the possession and the occupancy of the country as such, until long after the Exodus of the Hebrews, under Moses and Aaron; that Ham's descendants, through Canaan, in the persons of his sons Sidon and Heth, settled Sidon, Tyre and Carthage. This will not be denied by any intelligent Biblical student or historian. Sidon itself was named after Canaan's oldest son. From Egypt in Africa, Mizraim's descendants passed over to Asia, and settled India, whence they spread over that continent; that great commerce sprung up between India, etc., and Egypt and connecting countries, which was carried on by caravans; that Greece and Rome subsequently, shared largely in this commerce, especially after the march of Alexander the Great to India, by the caravan route, three hundred and thirty-two years before our Saviour's birth. This commerce has continued to our day. All these facts are undeniable, and will be denied by none acquainted with the Bible and past history. These descendants, of this maligned Ham, were at, and after the flood, and continue to be, to this day, of the white race, all having long, straight hair, high foreheads, high noses and thin lips; that they are so, and as much so as the descendants of the other two brothers, and possessing all of the same general lineaments—lineaments that so long as the race shall exist, will be an eternal protest against their being of the negro race that we now have. But as we intend to show conclusively that Ham and his descendants were and are white, long, straight hair, etc., from Noah to the present time, so plainly and so positively that no fair or candid man can have the least doubt of its truth, we proceed to state: That we will now give the names of the country, now called Egypt, beginning with its first settlement by Mizraim, in regular order down, to enable the Biblical and historical student to refer readily to the histories of the different epochs, to detect any error, if we should make one, in tracing Ham's descendants, down to the present day. In Hebrew it is called Mizraim, in Coptic and Arabic (the former being now the name of its ancient or first inhabitants), it is called Misr or Mezr, being spelled in both these ways by the Arabian and Coptic writers. In Syro- Chaldaic and Hellenic Greek it is called Aiguptos—and in Latin, Ægyptus. In many of the ancient Egyptian and Coptic writings it is called Chimi, that is, the land of Ham, and is so called in the Bible, see Psalms cv, 23; cvi, 22, and other places. The ancient inhabitants now in Egypt, the Copts, are called the posterity of Pharaoh, by the Turks of the present day. The ancient Hyksos, or shepherd kings (patriarchs) of the Hebrews, are sometimes confounded in ancient history, with the descendants of Ham, being of the same original stock. Egypt has not had a ruler of its own since the battle of Actium, fought by Augustus Caesar, thirty years before our Saviour, as God by his prophet had foretold that their own kings would cease forever to reign over that country. After the battle of Actium, it became a Roman province, and since that time, it has been under foreign rule. It now is, and has been governed by the Turks since 1517. It appears (see Asiatic Miscel., p. 148, 4to), that Mizraim, the son of Ham, and his sons (descendants), after settling Egypt, a portion went to Asia, which was settled by them, and that they gave their names to the different parts of the country where they settled, and which they retain yet. The names of these sons of Mizraim as given in history are as follows: Hind, Sind, Zeng, Nuba, Kanaan, Kush, Kopt, Berber and Hebesh, or Abash. From these children of Ham, we not only readily trace the present names of the countries, but that of the people also to this day; that they founded the nations of the Indus, Hindoos, Nubians, Koptos, Zanzebar, Barbary, Abysinia, the present Turks, is unquestioned and undoubted, by any intelligent scholar. That they are the white race, with long, straight hair, etc., is equally unquestionable, and are so this day, and as positively as that Shem and Japheth's descendants are now white. They first commenced to settle on the Nile in Africa, they then passed into Asia; and these two continents were principally settled by them. A portion of Europe (Turkey) is occupied by them—these, too, have long, straight hair, etc. ...

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