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Prehistoric Structures of Central America Who Erected Them?   By: (1810-1903)

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Julia Miller and the Online Distributed Proofreading Team at http://www.pgdp.net (This file was produced from images generously made available by The Internet Archive/American Libraries.)

Transcriber's Note

A number of typographical errors have been maintained in this version of this book. They have been marked with a [TN ], which refers to a description in the complete list found at the end of the text. Inconsistencies in spelling and hyphenation have been maintained. A list of inconsistently spelled and hyphenated words is found at the end of the text.

Oe ligatures have been expanded.

PREHISTORIC STRUCTURES

OF

CENTRAL AMERICA.

WHO ERECTED THEM?

A LECTURE,

BY

MARTIN INGHAM TOWNSEND, OF TROY, NEW YORK.

TROY, N. Y.: T. J. HURLEY, PRINTER, HARMONY HALL BUILDING. 1895.

INTRODUCTION.

It was not a long period after 1492, when the great Italian navigator with his Spanish crew made their first discoveries upon the central portion of America, that the Europeans, who had followed the footsteps of Christopher Columbus, began to fall in with structures of great magnitude and architectural beauty scattered widely throughout Mexico, Guatemala and Yucatan, &c.; and when the conquest of Peru was achieved, artificial highways and water courses were found there, such as could have owed their existence to no people but one with advanced knowledge of science as well as of the arts of civilized life. No people existed then upon this continent capable of doing the work which so astonished the world.

Thinking men and dreaming men have, from the earliest of these discoveries, been busying themselves to find out when, and by what people, these early monuments to human efforts were constructed.

Norwegian discoverers and Welsh emigrants have been pressed into the service. Our own Donnelly has changed the place where God and history had located the origin of the human race in the valley of the Tigris and Euphrates, to a suppositious island in the Atlantic Ocean, and led out the nations of the earth from there to Asia, Africa and western Europe, until he had no further need of the island and then sunk it in "the bottom of the sea."

A whole people have been pressed into the service of explaining this mystery. The convenient "Lost ten tribes of the House of Israel" have been set to do this work, as their fathers were compelled to "make brick without straw" in the Land of Egypt, and then suffered to escape to some land where search for them would be in vain.

The following treatise is written for the purpose of showing

FIRST. That the lands where these structures exist were known to commercial people and to many of the scholars of the countries about the Mediterranean Sea for at least a thousand years before the Christian Era.

SECOND. That these discoveries were made by the people of Phoenecia, originally located on the eastern border of the Mediterranean Sea, and by their colonies settled about Carthage in Africa, and throughout Spain and Portugal up to the Ebro; and who traversed every ocean almost as thoroughly as have their Anglo Saxon successors for the past four hundred years.

THIRD. That the origin of the people who made these structures is shown, to absolute certainty, by the character of the architecture and by the character of the religious belief exhibited upon the temples which were erected to Baal, or Moloch, i. e. the Sun, who was their God, who was worshiped by the immolation of their infant children upon his altars.

This is proven as fully by the carvings and frescoes in Mexico and Guatemala, and by the stone circle of Sillustani, in the high country of Peru, and the figures inscribed upon the great entrance to the cemetery of Tiahuanuco in the same region, as if a thousand witnesses arose from the dead and testified before us.

PREHISTORIC CENTRAL AMERICA AND PERU.

THE ANCIENT GREEK AND ROMAN SCHOLARS KNEW OF THE EXISTENCE OF THE WESTERN CONTINENT.

In the earlier existence of the Greek and Roman peoples, knowledge was extremely limited... Continue reading book >>




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