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than they did how to regulate a community by laws, how to train an army, how in peaceful intercourse to settle questions respecting property and service according to sound views of justice and equity. In the East despotisms arose on the ruins of despotisms; among the Aryans of the West were developed the first germs of political society. But, happily for mankind, the Romans had made their home on a central peninsula, for, as Strabo already noticed, the Latin sovereignty of the world was due to the central position of Italy. Thus it happened that shortly before the commencement of our era, the centre of civilization moved for the first time from the southern to the northern shores of the Mediterranean, and from its extreme east to the middle, from the Levant to the west.

If, as geographers and ethnologists, we estimate the course of history, the greatest achievements of the Roman Empire were the long conflict with Spain, the rapid conquest of Gaul and the British Isles, and the partial invasion of Germany. Inconspicuous and commonplace works are, from this point of view, the highest. The Romans established roads, milestones, and posts; as our language testifies, they first taught the art of building stone houses, and of surrounding them with circular ditches and breastworks. The effect of the foundation of the towns was to distinguish the people into a civic and rural population, and, at the same time, the first instruction was given in the art of governing such communities. Among the Celts of Gaul and Britain this revolution. grew, but the prolonged advantage of Roman government cost the sacrifice of the native language, so that the Basque dialect could hold its own only in the inaccessible mountains and remote districts of Aquitaine, and Celtic only in Wales, Scotland, and Ireland. The Germanic tribes owed the preservation of their language to the greater severity of their climate, the impracticability of their plains, the shorter duration of the Roman dominion, and their brave resistance, and also to the protection of their huge mountains, for while Latin easily entered and diffused itself in the open and prosperous country of Gaul, which those very qualities rendered more susceptible of earlier civilization, it was not able to penetrate into Germany by the shortest road, that is to say, from the south, but was compelled to take an

indirect course by the south-east and west, so that to the inaccessibility of the Alps the maintenance of the German language is due.

With the growth of political civilization in Northern Europe, the value of geographical features gradually changed. The streams suggested the sites of towns, trade and commerce flourished, and the northern shores of the Mediterranean obtained what they had previously possessed only in a small degree, a country of political importance in their rear. At this period the prosperity of Marseilles revived, Barcelona became a place of the first rank, Seville rose somewhat later, and the maritime power of Genoa came into existence, which, after the subjugation of Pisa, strove to obtain the supremacy of the Mediterranean. Predestined to cast all these completely in the shade, to survive all rivals, ultimately to become the predominant maritime power, Venice was founded in an incomparable situation, at the head of the Adriatic of which we may regard the Red Sea, the oldest marine road to India, as the continuation.

While the southern coast of Europe still appeared the most fortunately shaped region of the world, the maritime powers of Italy themselves brought about a change which entirely altered the import of the coast line of Europe, and we can even accurately point out the time at which the lustre of the Mediterranean shores began to fade. In the year 1318 Venetian galleys first conveyed Indian or, in other words, oriental wares, by sea through the Straits of Gibraltar to the Antwerp market. Single ships, indeed, had previously taken this course, but the perils of the sea and the fear of pirates had hitherto rendered land carriage preferable to sea freight for mercantile purposes. This advance in navigation led the seamen into the Atlantic Ocean. It was almost immediately followed by the rediscovery of the Canaries, the finding of the Azores, which latter lie two-fifths of the way to America. The Mediterranean sailors did not pass unnoticed along the coast of Portugal, which is most advantageously situated for trade by Lisbon became a sea town of the first importance; the Portuguese and Spaniards, timid at first, gained practice on the African coast before making voyages on the open seas; a New World was discovered in the West, and a marine road to India,

sea.

Changing Civilization.

517

while the Mediterranean sank at first slowly, and then with increasing rapidity, into the character of an inland sea. The greatest geographical advantages were thenceforth enjoyed by the nations which occupied the oceanic shores of Europe, whose maritime tendencies only needed a stimulus. In proportion as the countries across the sea gained in importance every century, in the character of a rejuvenated and duplicate Europe, the value of the oceanic coasts became higher and higher.

This aspect of history is always surprising. We previously admitted that at the reindeer period the outlines of our continent were as yet negative advantages to its inhabitants; we subsequently ascertained that the most ancient rise to a higher civilization occurred in the district of the Nile, near the point of contact between Africa and Asia, and that by its geographical proportions and indentations, the southern shore of Europe was, as it were, providentially prepared for the reception of oriental culture; but that these processes came to a stop when the value of the conditions of nature were altered by the progress of human achievements. Hence we must regard action as superior to any outlines of land or sea, and indeed as superior to all else.

These historical conclusions teach the temporary character of all advantages of geographical position. In the chain of the history of civilization the Mediterranean was a mere link which was only for a short time surrounded by the highest lustre. So also Europe can only for a time remain the scene of the highest achievements of the human race. The ancient Greeks, as inhabitants of islands, sharply cut peninsulas, isthmuses, valleys, and villages separated by mountains, enjoyed all the incentives and advantages of political seclusion favourable to the evolution of intellectual heterogeneity, but adverse to great national achievements. Thus, when their course was run, they sank into historical oblivion. Similarly Europe is now the most suitable region for the development of nations with strongly marked idosyncrasies. It was almost inevitable that compact and separate states or societies should be formed in Spain, the British Isles, Scandinavia, Italy, the Illyrian peninsula, in France with natural boundaries on them, and Germany with similar boundaries on two sides, and even European Russia seems to be a somewhat distinct region. It is a question

whether the development of a number of strongly characterized nations may not soon appear as small and contemptible as the separate life of Athens, Lacedemonia, Corinth, and Boeotia appeared when the time had come for larger historical existences.

In a world to the west of us, facing a world that is old, and growing older, and in a region situated between two oceans, a young and mixed nation occupies nearly the whole of a continent which could easily support three times the population of China, nearly 1000 millions. Here a new society is growing up which triples its numbers every ten years, so that it may perhaps enter upon the twentieth century with a population of 100 millions. If at some future time the higher problems of history are solved upon this stage the nations of Europe must resign their importance in history. As soon as the sun reaches midday with us its first rays brighten the shores of the New World. Thus it is with human culture also. Europe is now in the meridian of its course, and morning is already breaking over them. But the sun moves on; it does not remain as at Joshua's command; and as the configuration of our quarter of the world is, in a geological point of view, only a transient phenomenon, so also will its importance in the history of civilization be unable to escape the fate of all perishable things.

Source of Skulls.

TABLE OF SKULL MEASUREMENTS,

From Welcker's Craniological Contributions to the Archiv für Anthropologie.

LENGTH OF THE SKULL = 100.

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Index of breadth.

68

70

70

73

73

74

74

74

74

75

76
77

75

76

77

77

79

79

80

82

68 68

71

APPENDIX A.

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