The Black Race.
Some persons imagine that the ancient Egyptians were negroes. This notion has gained ground from the persistent falsification of history. We know more of the ancient Egyptians in regard to form and feature than of any other ancient people, from the thousands of contemporary paintings which remain on their monuments. The negro is found on the ancient Egyptian monuments, but always as a slave. The Egyptian is a very different personage. * * * The history of the black race is profoundly sad. We know that three thousand years ago this race existed in Africa. We know that this is a country capable of everything that man needs for comfort or luxury. It has great rivers, mountains and valleys, rich soil, and seas that wash its shores, which would carry an adventurous man to any portion of the world. It had within it the richest sources of commerce, mines of gold and jewels, birds of gorgeous plumage, spices and balms for the luxury and wants of mankind. It stretched away into the temperate regions, and had every variety of climate and soil. Alas for Africa, that in the wisdom of God it was given to the abode of the black race. Wherever the other race entered it and gained a foothold, it was redeemed from barbarism. Egypt was the mother of European wisdom and civilization. The Pentapolis was rich in temples and palaces, and glorious works of art. Here and there, in the northern part of the interior, adventurous travelers like Dr. Barth, have found the splendid remains of Italian art, marking the footsteps of the Roman.
But from the day the black man possessed the soil, he has never advanced one step in civilization, never built a hut more convenient than his forefathers built thousands of years ago, never invented a written language, never made a coin, never hewn a statue or a column, never erected a temple, never learned that the world moved around, never constructed a ship or even a rude bark, to navigate the great rivers of Africa. In short, the race, if it ever possessed the arts which the other descendants of Noah possessed in the earlier periods, lost them all, relapsed into barbarism, and for thousands of years have never made one step in advance, but steadily plunged deeper and deeper into the lowest forms of degradation. In Asia the Hindoo temples and palaces date from remote ages, and the Chinese civilization seeks its origin in the earliest years. In Europe, Greece and Italy attest the earliest advance of man, and England, Germany, Russia, and France, are all the growth of civilization from barbarian origin. In America, a country more thinly populated than any other, probably inhabited at a very late date, grand relics of art attest the existence of a civilization which has no apparent origin in European or Asian teaching. — In Africa, no man finds one solitary memorial on which to found a theory that the negro race was there ever anything more than now, a race of barbarians. There is no alternation of civilization and barbarism in the history of Africa. It is one long barbaric stagnation.