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The Story of Extinct Civilizations of the West   By:

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THE STORY OF EXTINCT CIVILIZATIONS OF THE WEST

by

ROBERT E. ANDERSON, M.A., F.A.S.

Author of Extinct Civilizations of the East

[Illustration: Prehistoric Structure, Uxmal (Yucatan) (p. 76).]

[Illustration]

Venient annis saecula seris Quibus Oceanus vincula rerum Laxet, et ingens pateat tellus Tethys que novos detegat orbes.

SENECA.

New York McClure, Phillips & Co. MCMIV

Copyright, 1903, by D. Appleton and Company

CONTENTS

CHAPTER PAGE

INTRODUCTION 9

I. PRE COLUMBIAN DISCOVERIES OF AMERICA 19

II. "DISCOVERY OF THE WORLD AND OF MAN" 36

III. THE EXTINCT CIVILIZATION OF THE AZTECS 54

IV. AMERICAN ARCHEOLOGY 71

V. MEXICO BEFORE THE SPANISH INVASION 88

VI. ARRIVAL OF THE SPANIARDS 106

VII. CORTÉS AND MONTEZUMA 135

VIII. BALBOA AND THE ISTHMUS 164

IX. EXTINCT CIVILIZATION OF PERU 172

X. PIZARRO AND THE INCAS 186

MAPS, ETC.

PAGE

Prehistoric Structure, Uxmal (Yucatan) Frontispiece

Imaginary Continent, South of Africa and Asia 12

Remains of a Norse Church at Katortuk, Greenland 21

Map of Vinland 24

The Dighton Stone in the Taunton River, Massachusetts 27

The Dighton Stone. Fig. 2 28

Cipher Autograph of Columbus 46

Chulpa or Stone Tomb of the Peruvians 87

Quetzalcoatl 93

Ancient Bridge near Tezcuco 100

Teocalli, Aztec Temple for Human Sacrifices 105

Monolith Doorway. Near Lake Titicaca. Fig. 1 173

Image over the Doorway shown in Fig. 1. Near Lake Titicaca. Fig. 2 175

The Quipu 180

Gold Ornament (? Zodiac) from a Tomb at Cuzco 182

EXTINCT CIVILIZATIONS OF THE WEST

INTRODUCTION

Throughout all the periods of European history, ancient or modern, no age has been more remarkable for events of first rate importance than the latter half of the fifteenth century. The rise of the New Learning, the "discovery of the world and of man," the displacement of many outworn beliefs, these with other factors produced an awakening that startled kings and nations. Then felt they like Balboa, when

with eagle eyes He stared at the Pacific, and all his men Looked at each other with a wild surmise Silent, upon a peak in Darien.

It was at this historical juncture that the "middle ages" came to an end, and modern Europe had its beginning. (See Chapter II.)

Why was Europe so long in discovering the vast Continent which all the time lay beyond the Western Ocean? Simply because every skipper and every "Board of Admiralty" believed that this world on which we live and move is flat and level. They did not at all realize the fact that it is ball shaped; and that when a ball is very large (say, as large as a balloon), then any small portion of the surface must appear flat and level to a fly or "mite" traveling in that vicinity. Homer believed that our world is a flat and level plain, with a great river, Oceanus, flowing round it; and for many ages that seemed a very natural and sufficient theory. The Pythagoreans, it is true, argued that our earth must be spherical, but why? Oh, said they, because in geometry the sphere is the "most perfect" of all solid figures... Continue reading book >>




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