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at the time were far advanced in science and civilization, should have, from the same islands, started on voyages of exploration, and succeeded as well; even so as to become acquainted with parts more attractive than the frigid regions and to establish themselves farther south. Here is the place,” he adds, “to recall to mind the old tradition regarding the region called “Irland it mikla’ or Great Ireland, the name of which clearly intimates that Irish people went there from their native country. History will do justice one day to the Irish and to the Scandinavians, as well as to the Spanish ; because it was not the fault of the former if no general communication was established between Europe and America in former periods, but rather the state of utter division of the European nations, which prevented them from knowing either their own interests or even one another.”” The probability is evident, and there are no reasons wanting to make us accept as an actual, historical fact the early discovery and settlement of the New World by the Irish nation. Southall” admits the existence of clear evidences to prove that, prior to the voyage of Columbus, America had been visited by the Irish. No other nation, indeed, of Christian Europe ever claimed or was thought of as having any claim to the honor of introducing, before the Northmen, the progress, civilization, and Christianity which we have found to exist in Great Ireland. But while all others are respectfully silent, a neighboring rival people, who could not in the least degree be interested in originating or giving currency to any fable that would deprive them of a national glory forced upon them, concisely, it is true, but candidly and plainly state that their first
voyagers to the Western Continent followed the track of Irish vessels, and were there received by Christian Irish colonists." We cannot but admit, as most modern writers,” that the award of the Northmen in favor of the Irish is as just as it is disinterested, when we consider several facts that bear out the fair recognition.” It is, indeed, no insignificant remark, which we find in an old Icelandic treatise of geography, that to Hvítramannaland or Albania “vessels were formerly sailing from Ireland;” “ and it may suffice to recall to mind a few recorded voyages to demonstrate the correctness of the statement that in early times Ireland and Great Ireland were the termini of a regular highway between the eastern and the western hemispheres. The first news of Ari Marson's detention, of his baptism, and of his elevation in Hvítramannaland reached his native country by the way of the Irish city, Limerick; a fact, says Rafn, which shows that of old there existed no uncommon intercourse between Europe's western island and the eastern shores of our country.” When, in the year 1007, Thorfinn Karlsefne set out from Greenland to establish a colony in our northeastern States, he was accompanied by several men worthy of notice, among whom were Bjarne Grimolfson and Thorhall Gamlason, in different vessels. Thorhall, however, soon became displeased with his leader, and, refusing to follow him farther south, separated from him with nine other men of the expedition. Bad luck overtook them, for it is related that the following year they were driven by violent winds to the coasts of Ireland, where they were cast into slavery." Bjarne Grimolfson fared no better at his return from the expedition in the year 1011. His ship was likewise turned away from its intended northern course to the Irish Sea, where it foundered, perforated by the ship-worm.” We have noticed already that a few years later the Icelander Gudleif sailed, under adverse winds, from the western coast of Ireland to a portion of our eastern shore, which, although distinct from the districts visited by the Northmen, afforded evident signs of European civilization. At a late season of the same year, 1027, too late to reach his native country, he chose to retrace his outward voyage by sailing for Dublin in Ireland.” The Icelandic sagas speak of two more voyages, or rather shipwrecks, of European sailors on the seas between Ireland and our eastern coast, which took place at the time of, or before, the discovery of Leif Ericsson. It is, indeed, recorded that after Leif had taken on board specimens of our continental produce, and was on his way to Greenland, he found the crew of a wrecked vessel and generously took them along to Brattalidha in Greenland.’ And again, when, in the year 1007, Thorfinn Karlsefne was on his expedition to settle in the New England States, he discovered on Cape Cod the keel of a vessel; and he considered this event as of sufficient importance to give to the promontory the name of Cape of the Keel, “Kjalarnes.” . It is easily understood that there can be no question here of the keel of an Indian willow-and-hide canoe. It will, of course, be objected that these voyages do not establish the existence of a regular transatlantic route of navigation at that time, since all but one were the result of pretended storms; but no one will refuse to acknowledge that the mysterious regularity of the adverse winds, in carrying one-half of the vessels which, during the first quarter of the eleventh century, sailed to our eastern coast or departed from it along the natural line of communication between Ireland and Great Ireland, is so remarkable, indeed, that it would be no rash judgment to consider the elements as having been tempered with some interference of the pilots in regard to a route at both ends of which they found the Irish language to be spoken. The Papas did not, in their distant peregrinations, abandon their mother tongue, as appears from the Irish books which they left behind at their expulsion from Iceland. Here in America Gudleif and his companions heard the Celtic idiom, with which they had become acquainted during their sojourn in Ireland, to be the language of the province in which they landed.” De Costa” pretends to attach little weight to this significant circumstance, but when we see its import corroborated by several others, which point to the same conclusion, we can hardly doubt that the Irish Papas had done on the western borders of the Atlantic Ocean what they had achieved in its northern recesses. Beauvois is of the opinion that White-man's Land was thus called by the fair Scandinavians, not from the color of its inhabitants, but from that of their clothing, since the white linen garments are known to be those of the Irish settlers, both clerical and lay, in other regions explored and inhabited by them, as in the Orkneys in particular. The horses seen by Gudleif in Great Ireland are the pendant of the sheep introduced into the Faroes by their ancient Irish colonists. If Ari Marson was converted and baptized in Hvítramannaland, the fact could never be understood nor explained without admitting the presence of the Irish monks who had been during the sixth and the subsequent centuries the sole as well as the zealous missionaries of Christianity in all western countries.' If this same Ari was, as his countryman, the champion of Breidhavik, detained a captive on the American coast, whilst yet honored and exalted, nothing but the admission of a settlement by the Papas can account for this seeming paradox. The American Irish, as true Christians, bore no ill will towards any stranger, but it was an act of common prudence to try to prevent their distant hiding-place from being revealed to a nation which had so often and so long pursued their brethren and barbarously expelled them from their peaceful colonies on the northern islands, and was yet keeping in thraldom the coasts of their mother country. This self-defensive policy was somewhat relaxed in Gudleif's case, because the conversion of the Northmen had inspired the Papas with a certain amount of confidence in a consequent change of their fierce and rapacious nature.” The fact of ancient Irish settlements in America, thus established by scanty, it is true, but sufficient his
'Beauvois, La Découverte, p. 1; * Cf. von Humboldt, Relation Peschel, Zeitalter, S. 82, n. 1; Historique, t. iii., 1825; and HakBeamish, Discovery, p. 211; supra, luyt, Voyages and Navigations, pp. 76, 77, 87; alibi. vol. iii. p. 4, referred to by Win
* Beauvois, La Découverte, p. 6, chell, p. 387. n. 5, and passim ; Moosmüller, S. * Supra, p. 77; Mallet, p. 265. 20; Gaffarel, p. 279; Herbermann, * Supra, p. 76; Rafn, Mémoire, Torfason, p. 14; Beamish, Discov- p. 27; De Costa, Precolumbian Disery, p. 209; Mizzi, p. 15; alii. covery of America, p. 159.
1 Rafn, Mémoire, p. 11; Gravier, * Supra, pp. 80, 83.
p. 79. * Rafn, Antiq. Amer., pp. 118, * Gravier, pp. 103, 104; Rafn, 191.
Mémoire, p. 14.
' Rafn, Antiq. Amer., pp. 139, mùller, S. 186; Beauvois, La Dé
171. couverte, p. 79. * Helzt thotti theim, sem their * Precolumbian Discovery of
maelti Irsku; supra, p. 81; Moos- America, p. 175.