Appendix: Rongo Rongo Script
For those of you who thought the Rongo Rongo script was never deciphered, the following will come as quite a surprise.
In 1892 the Easter Island scripts were deciphered, but have been ignored because they do not say what the scientists want to hear. They are not about voyaging from Melanesia, they are about life in South America! The following tablet is a detailed history of tribal conflict in South America, leading up to the exodus to Rapa nui! It is about the slow and persistant attrition of the Caucasian element in South American culture. The tablets even mentions which tribes were from the ancient land of Tulan (Tulapin or Turtle Island, ie; Bahama banks). Although it does not spell out that the Tulan and Rapa people were Caucasian, it can be inferred from other legends which describe the children of the sun as pale skinned people. Not only this but many Peruvian mummies were either blonde or red heads. It must be noted that these Caucasians were not from Europe but natives of America, as genetics shows that the founding members of many indigenous Amerindian tribes 12,000 years ago were Caucasian. Other studies indicate that the Ra element in South American culture is from Egyptian trade during the Bronze Age ~4,000 years ago. These people also having many red heads amongst them. These people could also be classed as indigenous South Americans as an assimilation period of 2,000 years is significant. It is no surprise to find that the face of man has been constantly changing over time, not only through man induced events, but also through natural selection. Resus negative, blonde/red hair and blue eyes are all recessive genes.
Translation of an Easter Island inscription
on a tablet Marked No 1 (front).
By A. C arroll, M.A., M.D. October 6th, 1892.
Kindly lent By S. Percy Smith, Esq., F.R.G.S.
"The bones of our ancestors of the Sun-fires, the masters of the beloved tribe of our sacred dead ancestors of the holy Sun-people, the people of the mountains, the Charcas, a holy clan. The Eagle chief was of these dead ancestors and their fires of the Sun and a master of the free Chunchas. The men of the two-sailed vessel came, attacked the Quichua. These gorging barbarians attacked the Sun's men and the Quito people and their rulers. They, the Snakes, took their places. The sacred ancestral fires in the coast-lands for seven years were extinguished, and among the Rapa people for six years. Then the chief of the Eagle tribes fought in the coast-lands for six years, and again the chief and the Eagle clan went to the coast lands for five years. Then this chief of the Eagle tribes died, and the tribes fled from the coast-lands to the region of the head waters; the Snakes occupied after the Eagle chief, and tribes were overwhelmed and ended on the coastlands. Five years after the Eagle tribes were overthrown the clan of the royal bands struggled before the Snakes. They were then seen to be seized by the barbarians, who gorged upon these loved tribes for five years. This clan of the Sun and its chiefs was overthrown, was mastered, was homeless, were these Sun's men. The great Caña were homeless. The Sun's men, the mountain clansmen, were dead, and the fires of this clan, and the chiefs of this clan of the mountains. Then the Charcas under their chiefs fought for the freedom of their homes. The Quichuas were overthrown, and their freedom thus ended, their Sun-fires and their clan's chief was dead, and the people on the coast had mastered these beloved tribes. The Cha-Rapas, a branch of the Eagle tribes, with the Guanacas, living on a part of the coast; the main body of the Eagle tribes nearest the coast, with assistance from Quilago, beloved of the tribe, under a chief of chiefs of the Sun's men, returned, and with their weapons ended all overthrew all, and thus finished the trouble.
The master of the Lord of Lican, a child of our ancestors, and of
the ancestors of those on the coast of the Cañario, and of the Mucoas of the coast, all fought for seven years, but after six years the Cañario began to relax. The Guanacas and the Eagle tribes also, after six years attacking of the place of the Snakes, and after these six years of attacking, and by the aid of these Cañario, the freedom of the Snakes was stopped after these six years. Then the Maya clan threatened the Cañario, and the free homes of the tribes beloved, Then these Mayas turned and attacked the ancestor's clan of the royal bands, but the Cañario brought this freedom to an end after six years. Then the Scyri of Quito, a prince of the Sun-fires, overwhelmed the Mocoa clan, and the royal band of the coast-lands, after eight years of struggle with these and the Intagas of the coast-lands, and the Yambayas brought it to an end. The Intagas and the Chinchas derived their Sun-fires from the Royal-Charcas. Their princes were chiefs of the children of the Sun. The sacred Chinchas, among the coast people, the Sun's men, who as free men of the Chin had returned, had these sacred Chin, to the coast as masters: the chief body they were of the Cha-Rapas.
Chimborazo had a handsome son, of his body the chief descendant, named Duchicela, they were of the sacred head-waters people of the Sun, some of whom went to the coast-lands, our ancestors, from their bodies. A temple was seven years in building by these ancestors, the war chiefs and the Mancus. They made it for their Sun-fire, for they were Sun's people, and of the Charcas.
"Duchicela was the sacred head of the Sun's people, the Chimbu. Toa, who became his chief wife, she was water-borne, and in the front of all taken as the chief descendent. In the temple of Quito for seven years staying, this chief of the Sun's people the Chimbu; the lady Toa and all her tribes thus obtained. In these days, in the coast lands, the souls suffered by the dead bodies being gorged, of the Sun-families, by the Serpents. The Sun's men of Sun's ancestors, being driven below by these Serpents; and the free mothers to wives turned by them. The Guaracas, the Rapas, the Intagas, and their sacred heads, these holy war-birds; the Snakes overwhelmed them and their power brought to an end, and these holy ones were overwhelmed;. The Sun-fires on the coast, were extinguished. The Eagle tribes attacked the tribes dwelling near the head-waters and overwhelmed them for five years, and for another five years they were watched; then the Rapas undertook this duty for five years; then the clan of the Royal-bands did so for nineteen years. Then the Snakes attacked the Mocoa for four years. Then the chiefs of the Sun-peoples gathered the Charcas, the Eagle tribes, the Royal clan, and overran the Snakes for five years; then the Cha-Rapas and the Eagle people overwhelmed them, mastered, and then watched them. Then the Mocoa joined Quilago and the Quispe; and the great mothers near the coast were released, and became again the great mothers of our peoples. Then the people of Quito, with the Guanacas, a beloved tribe, with people from the head-waters region, with their masters and the men, liberated the vaults and tombs of the Challu nation, that the Snakes had seized. Then they assisted the Mocoa; and the troubles in Quito were ended after five years; and the women were set free, and became the free mothers of the Sun's men. The Tuccumans' women were also liberated, and became wives of the Sun's men.
Then the handsome prince liberated more of the women from the Snakes of the coast tribes, and this prince made free these mothers; and in Quito the trouble ended, and the Challu being liberated, and the wars in Quito were ended for our ancestors, and the mothers of the Sun's people then there.
Afterwards the Eagle clan attacked and overthrew the barbarians, and the chief of Snakes, and also the Mocoa chief, for the women and the mothers of the Sun's people had been seized in their dwellings by the barbarians who had overcome the beloved tribes, and seized their women as wives for these barbarians, and had gorged themselves upon the beloved tribe of the Cha-Rapa, whose tombs they had taken, and had mastered the free men of the Fires of the Sun; but the Eagles came down and overthrew them, and released them, and also the sacred Chin people and their chiefs, who had been overwhelmed. These Chin people had long before been conquered and taken by the Snakes, who had enslaved them. They were branches of the dead Quichua ancestors, many of whom were Collas, a sacred people who were overthrown and ended and so were their free mothers, and the dead bodies of these women were ill-used. The Eagle warriors revenged the sacred masters of this Sun's people, and returned to the Sun's people the Sun's good times, and also upon the coast with the masters they loved; and they also relieved the Guanaca tribe, sacred and beloved, they returned the Guanaca, these Sun's people, to their homes. The much loved Huayllas tribes were watched and eventually turned to the Sun people. The Cha-Rapas and their chiefs of the Sun people, and of the Sun-circles, made the barbarian Huangas their servants, and took the sacred
things, and the daughter of a chief of the clan of the upper-waters, the people of the noble bands of the Charcas, she was the daughter of these Sun's people; from her afterwards descended the chiefs of the Coyaimas.
In later times Huasca and Ata overthrew these Sun's people, seized them, and also seized their valley to the end of the pass and on the coast, they attacked the branch of the Manta. The coast people who were descended from the people at the region of the head-waters, where their sacred ancestors died near the fires of the Sun. The coast-land tribes thus referred to are the Chincha, and their rulers, who were overthrown when Quito's freedom was ended by Ata and his warriors.
Previous to these sacred ones being overwhelmed and ended, the Eagle tribe had conquered and overturned the chiefs of the Chincha nation, but the Snakes coming like venomous Serpents to these Sun's people, these ancestors were seized, and those ancestors of the people from the head-waters were bound up, and then this sacred and handsome tribe was destroyed by the barbarians. The Snakes took that portion of Quito and ended these head-waters' people who had been related to the Cuchuna, whom the Eagle tribe had once overthrown.
Our wise teachers tell us how the sacred ancestors of these tribes came from the coast, with their Sun-fires, their women, their temple officers of the Sun's people, and the Vestals of the Sun's people, to Quito came these beloved tribes.
From the snowy mountains, say our wise teachers came the people of Rapa when their Sun-fires were extinguished, and their sacred ancestors were seized, the men of this tribe moved off. "The sacred bodies borne by our ancestors, the holy men of the tribe, these holy ones approached the coast, dividing into these branches in the coast countries, one settling near where sacred Tu was beloved by his tribe, another among the Cañario, the others scattering among those people their relations from the snowy mountains, those from Lican, and those from Runahuanac, among these Sun's people on the coast, and among the people from the headwaters these tribes settled, and near other clans now dead. The Huarina, whose chief was gorged and whose clan is dead. The Uramarca of the head-waters whose clan is dead. The Huarina were gorged
among the head-waters' regions; their clan is dead. The Titiuru replacing them, after the Huarina were gorged and their clan was dead. The Puruhua arose as a tribe in this region of the upperwaters; but the clan of Puruhua is also dead, and no longer found in Yanahuara and among the head-waters, this clan is dead. The Puru branch of these lived longer among head-waters ; but was not so great as the clan that was dead. Among these head-waters, and the dead clans that once were there, were the Yunca, they after four years of struggling with the tribes on the lakes were driven off. Our wise teachers tell us that during four years, barbarians gorged the Chinchas and the Sun's men. The Mallanca and the Colla were also gorged, and other holy men, when they were holding a feast of the Sun, and a potato feast with chants and songs near their temple by the sacred rock, a war began which lasted four years before the tribes were again at peace, during which the Intags, and the Changos, injured the sacred men, and the spirits and the souls suffered and many of the clans were dead before the Sun's men were free from strife. Then the clan from the snowy mountains lighted the Sun-fires and became allies with the rulers of the Chincha, and the Runahuanca, but when the chief of the Puruhua, after six years died. The Cha-Rapa were punished and overwhelmed by the barbarians, who gorged the loved tribe.
Then the chief of the Eagle's tribe came to their assistance with his officers and men, and ended the troubles of this tribe, and the Snakes were thus overwhelmed, and their acts ended by the Eagle chief from the mountains, who ended the trouble and set them free. Punished and overwhelmed were those on the coast, and the Quichua were again free. The coast tribes were punished during four years, and overwhelmed. They were punished with, and by the assistance of, the Lady Toa and her husband, of the mountain people; they overthrew the barbarian Snakes, as well as assisting in the fights with these Snakes, parts of the Tschimu lands were overrun by these Snakes for five years. These barbarians also gorged the loved tribe of the Challapampa, but, with Toa's assistance, after a time they lighted the Sun-fires and became free men. In after times a prince of Quito in these parts attacked, near Guambacho, a part of the Tschimu-Canchua people, and these near Hua-Rapa, another portion of the Tschimu, and also the men of a free people the Huama; afterwards this prince attacked the Guamachuco, related to the peoples of the upper head-waters' districts. Then there was an intervention of the Eagle chiefs from Puna Island and from Hua-rapa, and the Huama men again became free; but Ata, the prince, again attacked the Challapampa (a people of the fishing-flats) and the Guamachuco, while one of his chiefs went off and attacked Rapa, and took it, and also the holy men of the Cha-Rapa. Then the chief of the Eagles tribes being dead, the people of the head-waters and those of Yanahuara were made
to suffer: the Snakes overwhelmed them, their women were taken, their Fires of the Sun extinguished. These Sun's people were injured, and their women. They were punished, overwhelmed, overthrown by these Snakes, who were the overthrowers. Many of the dwellers in the island of Puna were killed, punished, and overthrown. The Tocay were many of them killed; these were children of the Sun, and the men of this Sun's tribe were punished and overwhelmed, and their souls destroyed. These were of Quichua ancestry, but the Snakes overwhelmed them, as they did the head-waters' people, and those of Yanahuara, as also the children of the Yuncu, and the Challapampa people, and those from the Yngachungana, and the Cha-Rapa; their women and the Sun-fires. They were mastered, as were the Muzo people, the holy temple of the chiefs near Chungana of the Sun people. Not even the enjoyment of the souls of the dead could be free, but all were overwhelmed, punished, and overthrown. The Tschimu, the branches of the Tschimu, and the Hualla, who assisted to injure the souls of the dead; but by the Sacred Chief of Souls, and the acts of the Rapa people, these wicked ones were punished, and many overthrown and taken to Rapa, roped, tied, bound, and overwhelmed. The barbarians attacked the Huarca beloved tribe, the barbarians assaulted this loved tribe the Huarca, and their sacred temple with its Fire of the Sun, and the sacred and free Vestals fled to the vaults and to Puna off the coast, these women of the Sun, the sacred ones, being overwhelmed. Then the prince commenced an attack, lasting two years, and with the Intagas it continued for two years; they continued to attack the four clans of the Manta the Apechique, the Pichua, the Pampahuaci, the Passau and also three tribes of the Chuns the Chunana, the Chintay, the Collenche. The Snakes, the Manta had punished, and overwhelmed the tribes, and their rulers in Quito, the sacred and loved children of the Sun, and of the Sun-fires extinguished on the coast, and the masters, and the sacred warriors, and the ancestors of the Cha- Rapa = a Sun's people, with the Sun-circles of these Cha-Rapa. Then the prince and the officers, with the rulers of these loved tribes again recovered their freedom. Afterwards the Eagle chiefs overthrew the places of rest, having punished and overwhelmed the Guamachucos, and then attacked in the country of the upper-waters, the three clans and tribes, the Chunana, the Chintay, the Collanche, and overwhelmed the clans in a four years' raid, and the remaining tribes in an attack lasting two years. The masters of a loved tribe, the Picu, of the free Charcas, with the rulers of the Chincha men, and the Huamachacas, were engaged in a war in the coast-lands, joined in by the Guanaca in the coast-lands. The Huamachaca became captives of the Chimbri-men from the mountains; and the men of this tribe were forced to the coast, and thus overwhelmed and punished by the men of the Sun; but the
Snakes of the Apechique tribe (the mountaineers) and the Huama took many of them captives to the coasts.
"From the old land of Tolan (Tulapin) had come the ancestors of the rulers of the Chincha, and the foremost master among the rulers of Runahuanac. Some of their women had come from the mountaineers, overthrown later by the Incas, and some from the Huallmi, who in later times were found among the Tschimu. From the old land of Tolan had come the Vestals of the Sun; these were of the ancient Tolan people. The barbarians coming to the coast gorged themselves with the holy men found near the coast for six years, those who were under the rulers of Quito, or under the chiefs of the Eagle's tribesmen. The women of the Rapa, the mothers of this clan of the Sun's people, and the Vestals of the Sun of this free and loved tribe were captured. The rulers of the Chincha, the clan, and the chiefs of Liribamba, and those of the town of Lican, whose ancestors lighted the fires of the Sun, among this Sun's people. These chiefs of men, their heads were turned from their Prince Ata, and he only reigned as their chief for eight years. Long before this the chief Hualla and his clansmen had migrated under the guidance of the Spirits, taking their women and the women of the sacred chief with all his men, and, on a two-sailed vessel, sailed away. This chief's ancestors were the Eagle chiefs and the Cha-Rapa, the Eagle chief of the Puruha. Others were among the dead Chimbu-razu. The Luan ancestors who lighted the Sun-fires among the Sun's people, the descendents of the Chincha. In the songs and chants of the women they sing of these things, as do the women of the region of waters, and of the Yañahuara. It was the ancestors of those who in the town of Lican lighted the fires of the Sun for the Sun's people, the Chincha, and kept it burning there for six years, even when opposed by the rulers of the Huaman, as the women sing in their chants. Then many of the people from Yañahuara, after these six years with the sacred chief in a two-sailed vessel went off to the island of Puna. After this the fires of the Sun went out in Lican, and the days of our ancestors in various parts of Quito were ended, and these free, Sun's children of the Chincha, the Golden Sun's people, those sacred, free, and beloved tribes, are remembered in the chants of the women of the Cha-Rapa.
"The women of the Picu tribe had to change to the Chincha their fires of the Sun from their sacred and loved clan home. Their women had been punished and overwhelmed, and the tribal fires extinguished by the Huarcas after five years' fightings. Near the Sun-fires of the ancestors of the Sun's people and the town of Lican were branches of the Ticu tribe, also the chiefs of the Intaga, the Changes, and various people of the Sun's clans. Three of these united, and these three joined the clan of the chief Hualla, thus adding to this clan these
three others. Then these united tribes went to Ympris with the chief of the Yntaga, and the Changos, and part of the clan of the royal bands. They afterwards joined the Sun-people of Puna. Some remained with the Chief Hualla and his clan, others joined the Sun-people of Puruha, and of Puruhua; some passed to the Eagle chief of the Manchua, others were with the Lican ancestors' Sun's fires; while others were among the coast-lands people, and among the sacred women, the mothers of the Sun-peoples, and they extended to the Purumacua, near the Mauli River of the coast. Thus among the Sun's peoples' ancestors are found these Yntaga, Changos, Yngayncusi, Huascas, the women of whom Ata afterwards punished, and overwhelmed, and ended the ancestral songs of their women of the coast. Upon the coast were some of the clans of the Chief Hualla, and those of the rulers of Runahuanca, and the Chincha. The sacred, loved tribe was for eight years oppressed by him."
The Easter Island inscriptions and the way in which they are translated.
By A. C arroll, M.A., M.D. October 6th, 1892.
St. Kilda, Kogarah, near Sydney, Australia,
TO THE HON. SECRETARIES OF THE POLYNESIAN SOCIETY.
In a letter of yours just received by me I find this sentence therein:- "It would gratify a very widely expressed desire if you would kindly give us a sketch of the method you pursue in translating the tablets." Having foreseen that some such wish might be expressed by those interested in the Easter Island inscriptions, I have been preparing a grammar and vocabulary as a key to the inscriptions, and an explanation of how to read the characters and the languages in or for which they were cut or engraved, and I said so in the introduction to the translations you expressed to me a wish to have published in the Journal of the Journal of the Polynesian Society . When this grammar and vocabulary, &c., is completed and published, it will of course make everything so clear that anyone will be able to learn, not only the key and the mode of working out the decipherment, but the whole of the subject, and allow them to translate the inscriptions. But to make this key, grammar, and vocabulary completely satisfactory will necessarily occupy a considerable number of printed pages; and I also find that I am still discovering fresh characters, words, and grammatical forms in the inscriptions I have received and am still reading; therefore the said keys, grammar, and vocabulary of the several inscriptions are still being added to. Thus both the bulk or volume of what has been prepared and what is being added to it will cause me to pause before publishing this at present; but this will not prevent me giving a rapid sketch of how I came to be able to learn what the inscriptions contained, what they were about, and the plan upon which they were written, &c. I therefore proceed to give this information as under, that you, and the readers of the Journal in which, with this letter, it may be printed, may thus know how the translations are made.
IT is over thirty years ago since I began the study of ancient writings, and having, as they became known, examined the oldest hieroglyphics of Egypt, Babylonia, India, Indo-China, and others discovered in Asia, I became gradually convinced that a similar plan was to be found among these, as the one system upon which they were designed. The later findings of the Hittite, the Cypriot, those of Eridu, and old Chaldea, those in Arabia and elsewhere, confirmed this belief, while the writings thereon of the most profound scholars of France, Germany, America, Asia, and Great Britain made it certain that this was so. Upon further following out these investigations and collecting the ancient writings of America, I learned that in that so-called new continent from the north in Alaska and Canada, to Mexico and the central region, and onward to the older nations in Ecuador, Peru, and other places many ancient peoples there used hieroglyphic and phonetic, as well as ideographic, symbolic, and conventionally drawn figures as records of their mythologies, genealogies, traditions, histories, poems, and other matters and things. These American writings also contained similar forms for similar ideas, and were used upon the same plan as those in the so-called old continents. There also frequently was found a conventional drawing of human heads and figures, as well as those of animals, which were often intended to conceal from the common people what the chiefs, priests, scribes, or others instructed therein would readily recognise and understand. Continually pursuing these investigations and matters as opportunities served, or as I could procure materials from correspondents, I at length obtained a considerable number of specimens of writings in ancient characters of the old and new continents, and also learned that my correspondents, as well as scholars independent of my own investigations, were giving confirmations of my views as to the connections and correspondences between the ancient hieroglyphics, or the characters, and. the ideas they were intended to convey.
More recently I obtained copies of the Easter Island inscriptions, and, upon examining them, was much impressed with the many instances in which the characters were similar to those used by the old civilised nations of America, who wrote in hieroglyphics or in phonetic characters. Learning that the natives of Easter Island were Polynesians, and not Americans, I thought it must be only a coincidence that the characters of the Easter Island inscriptions were like those of the American peoples, and that they must be a kind of writing used by Polynesians. I therefore began to search for similar Polynesian characters and writings of ancient or recent times. After a few years of investigation I discovered that the ancestors of the Polynesians did not write in these or in any other characters after they had passed beyond the Moluccas, on their way to the eastward, to the islands of the Pacific; and that, before then, their writings in ancestral times even were entirely different, and not in any particulars like those of the Easter Island inscriptions. Having quite satisfied myself upon these points, and wishing not to mislead myself, I began a fresh investigation into the writings of those who voyaging across
the Pacific before Europeans sailed there might have left such a mode of writing upon Easter Island; but all such voyagers wrote in very different characters, and in a manner not at all like the inscriptions under consideration. But, without pursuing this part of the subject further here, it is only needful to say, that from the examinations made, it became clear from many direct and collateral kinds of evidence that the Easter Island inscriptions were engraved on the tablets by scribes who had learned the characters, and the methods of writing with them, from those who had learned and knew how they were used in ancient times in America, and especially in S.W. America.
Then came the question: In which language were they to be read or deciphered into? At that time believing that in the Inca times those monarchs had destroyed all kinds of writing within their dominions, and that only knotted cords, or quipus , were used, as the Spaniards had affirmed; and that no hieroglyphics, characters, or writings were permitted, I did not think the inscriptions could be in the languages of the regions over which the Incas reigned; but some of my correspondents soon convinced me that there were many distinct nations that wrote, in S.W. America, even during the Inca times, as they had done long before those monarchs. It therefore became probable that these inscriptions might be read in some of these S.W. American languages, as the characters and symbols were those used by such nations; and thus all the difficulties were gradually removed. From the time that these facts and keys were obtained, all doubts and uncertainties disappeared; and, by using the knowledge thus obtained, it was comparatively easy and simple enough by comparing with known symbols and characters, and their equivalents and values to decipher, and to put into syllables or words, and to read into the dialects or languages into which they combined. The only difficulty was that more than one language was employed by the scribes in the different inscriptions; and these had to be studied before they could be rendered into English correctly. Having thus given, as briefly as possible reserving the steps and proofs for the work hereafter to be published the circumstances and the mode by which the discovery was reached and arrived at, it now remains to describe what these hieroglyphics are; the nature and method of the inscriptions; the plan upon which the figures are read into syllables, words, parts of speech, and sentences. Of course it would be much easier, and please me much more, to have a means of printing the characters and the parts of these, so as to bring them before the eyes of the reader, instead of having to trust to descriptions only; but this would necessitate the casting of type for the purpose, and by the long delay in course of posting, after correction of proofs or errors, would prevent the publication of the information as to how these inscriptions
are read. When I am printing the grammars and vocabularies, I will have each of the characters, and the separate parts of these characters, clearly shown, with the equivalent or value of each in the language in which it was intended to be written and read, and also with its equivalent or interpretation in English. This will require the casting of special characters and their components, as type, to print or engrave from, which, with the care required, will, for so much work as will be necessary, require considerable time and expense; we must therefore now attempt by description to make it comprehensible.
It will be seen, upon examination, that the characters of the inscriptions either represent natural objects or symbolic figures, adopted from forms and parts of birds, reptiles, tools, weapons, implements, parts of human bodies, and other things. The attempt, as in most other American hieroglyphics, is not to copy anything exactly, but to give a conventional representation that was well known and understood, as of an eagle or other bird, a turtle, a tortoise, a serpent, a toad, a frog; or of a sword, a sling, an axe; or an arm, a hand, a leg, a foot, a feather, a wing, a tail of a bird or animal, a sun, a moon, a star, the sky, the coast, a rainbow, with bows, arrows, cords, &c.; each done in several distinct ways, each of which had its own significance. Thus a serpent might either be a friend or an enemy, a priest or a wise-teacher; but not to be misunderstood because of the attitude or the additions thereto, a feathered-serpent such as so often appears in these inscriptions, and in all American writings can never be mistaken for an enemy, or anything but a priest or a wise-teacher, by anyone conversant with American writings. It will also be apparent upon careful inspection of the inscriptions that numbers of the hieroglyphics are compound, and are constructed of distinct portions, these parts being variously combined in the different characters. Each of these parts so combined is either a syllable or a complete word, but sometimes a letter either a vowel or a consonant of a proper name, or a grammatical form (pre- or post-position), or other part of speech. When combined either in one complete character either a sentence is formed, or a subsequent or a conjoined character makes the sentence complete, or adds to its force or significance.
The symbol, or part of each character, gives it value in sound to the syllable or word it is used for, or intended to denote. Thus, an open hand reads ma , an abbreviation for maqui , "the hand;" but in this case it means "free." In a pointing position it means ma , "let us see;" in other positions it has several other meanings. The head of the eagle, when drawn fully and properly, reads either cuntur or condor , according to which dialect the inscription is in. If it is an eagle's head on a man's body it reads cuntur-runa , "an eagle-man." If the head has three feathers, and if an arm is drawn without a hand,
it reads cuntur-cura-ne-i-runa , "the eagle chief of the men." If a foot is also added, this reads cha-ntin , in addition to the above, or "the eagle chief of these tribes' men." Each figure, or part of figure, its position and relation to the other figures with which it it related, gives its meaning, but the phonetic value remains the same, unless the contrary is shown by some alteration of the figure. As an illustration of this, if the inscriptions are carefully inspected, several serpent symbols are displayed; some are separate, others are attached to persons, to birds, to birds' bodies, to reptiles' bodies, or to other combinations of these snakes; some are feathered, this being a common symbolic figure in many different parts of America, where it implies a teacher, a wise man, a priest, &c. In Aztecan it read quetzal-coatl , in Itzan it was cuculcan . In one dialect of Quichua it read amaute , in another one amaru , &c., but all meaning the same i.e. , "wise teachers." In another form and combination in the inscriptions it is to be read curi , "the golden or shining serpent." In other combinations it is read as amatu , "the warlike snake; or as machaca , a "hated enemy," a "venomous snake;" or as machacui , "the spirit enemies," or "snakes of the dead; or as palu , "the deceitful snakes," or "treacherous enemies," or "opponents who are deceitful." Several other forms and combinations will be seen, but these show the ideas in the inscriptions borrowed from American models, and used by these scribes in similar ways for the same meanings. On the heads of many of the figures in the inscriptions will be seen an arrow or an obtuse blunt spear-shaped figure: this stands for the word chuqui , meaning "an old ancestor," and it often has one or two rings at the sides; these stand for yn , meaning "of the Sun," or yn-ti , "belonging to the Sun," and the right or left side indicates which tribe they belong to, as American symbolic figures in many parts of the S.W. indicates the tribe of the individual displayed, or which Sun-tribe he belonged to. These tribes of the Sun, also being Sun-worshippers, or rather adorers of ancestral spirits in the Sun, extended over the Cordillera for 2,600 miles north and south, and among them were many subdivisions, and each had an emblem to indicate it. In the inscriptions of Easter Island, under the arm of many of the figures will be seen a peculiar-shaped weapon: it is to be read cchingana , and this symbol means there "a labyrinth, a cave." In such places their dead were often deposited, and in it, when they felt pressed upon by enemies, they often took a final stand, and fought desperately.
The plan upon which the scribes made the inscriptions of Easter Island was to engrave the conventional figure of the person or his tribal totemic sign , as generally drawn in their symbolic manner, and thus widely understood by chiefs, priests, and scribes. This was an eagle-headed figure for those of the Eagle tribes i.e. , those called cuntur-azo . The Chamborazos were drawn with an axe the old copper-axe being chambo in one dialect, and chimpo in another. Then, if they added to this a certain form of an open hand it was to be read as ma , meaning in this case "free," and so continuing to add other symbols these having each a phonetic value, and a fully understood meaning until the sentence was completed. They also used certain simple and other more complex figures, which had a value or sound for reading, and which expressed, and was equivalent to the verb, noun, adjective or other part of speech, and were used according to recognised laws of combinations in compositions, or, as in these inscriptions, the sentence constructions, or on the statues, &c., the titles and names. Thus proceeding, the scribes added figure to figure until the passage, thought, or combined ideas were worked out completely. To fully explain all their methods would occupy a considerable amount of printing, and cannot therefore be here entered upon further, but it will all be clear enough for even those who know nothing of American writings of the ancient scribes when my grammar, &c., is published; but from these explanations any one will perceive how and in what manner these characters were written, and are to be read and interpreted. The indication as to which dialect or language the tablet inscription is to be deciphered into is shown by the inscription itself. When the language is one of those used in Ecuador or Quito it clearly shows it by the characters and symbols; or if it is the language of the Cunturazos, it is shown in a similar way; or if it is the language of the Chamborazos, or of the Mantas, or of the Tschimu, or if it is one of the Quichua dialects, or that of the Caribs, or of the Aymara, or of the Canarios, or the Collas, or any of the many distinct families of the languages of those in the S.W. American regions, the same indication by the change in the characters show which language they were written in.
The shields that are so often drawn in the inscriptions, show the clan about which the scribe was writing. They will be seen to have 3, 4, or 5 lines attached to them; these represent feathers, and indicate the clan whose crest or totem enabled them to wear this number of feathers. (Some of these clans have thus distinguished themselves in their ownward migrations from Asia or Manchuria, to Alaska, from thence to Mich-cho-a-can "the land of abundant fish" (now "Mitchigan") onward to Central America, and thence to the Southern Cordilleras, during 2,300 years, under 104 different and successive chiefs, all this time retaining their totems, their shields, and the number of their feathers to distinguish their clans and subdivisions; their scribes engraving and painting their records, and their priests and chiefs learning and reciting their traditions and histories in their assemblies.) The shields are thus important in these inscriptions, as are the attached feathers; and the chevrons or bands marked upon these shields indicate the tribes and the families or nations, according to other indicating symbols, all widely known. These shields, feathers, chevrons, bands, and other symbols, have existed and been used by the successive generations of the same peoples from very remote times, and were generally prevalent until the Spanish Conquest, and are still retained by many clans and peoples.
It will thus be perceived, that using the knowledge I have acquired of the American mode of forming and using their hieroglyphics or characters, and finding that the Easter Island inscriptions were derived from those of America, I employ this mode of deciphering the syllables or words, and adding these together in the indicated manner; then let them, when so conjoined, tell their own story in the language they are found to be written in; and then simply translate this into English. This explanation will make comprehensible, to even those persons least acquainted with such matters, how I decipher and read the Easter Island inscriptions. Those who have studied such hieroglyphic writings, will recognise, that the key to the decipherment being secured, every additional tablet read confirms the trust to be placed in the method employed, when it enables the reader to see that every sentence deciphered falls properly into its place in the story the inscription is relating. In the translations I have made, I find that the persons, places, and events introduced into some of the inscriptions are confirmed by the Spaniards, or other independent writers' accounts; although in the mass of the narratives they give clan, tribal, and family histories, that in no other written documents have been preserved, going back centuries before the SpanishConquest.
When my work giving the value and meaning of every part of a character is published, every one who wishes to read these important historical and mythological inscriptions, will be able to do so without difficulty; but by my writing this, and its publication in this Journal in which my translations of inscription of Easter Island invocations, &c., appeared, it will serve to show how I learned to make those translations, and to interpret what for so many generations had remained unknown, and will explain to anyone who is interested therein how such decipherment was performed.
I NTRODUCTORY REMARKS RELATING TO THE E ASTER I SLAND INSCRIPTIONS,
AND WHAT THEY CONTAIN.
The inscriptions in hieroglyphic characters that have been found in the ground, or under the floors of the old stone houses upon Easter Island, have always been considered of such importance that all the scholars and antiquarians engaged in studying the past histories, mythologies, modes of thought or ideas, or the doings of ancient peoples, have desired to find out the meanings of these writings. It has therefore been the reason for many persons in each of the countries of Europe, and in many parts of America, making various guessings as to what they were about. All expeditions and persons who have visited Easter Island since Captain Cook, or the beginning of this century, have ascertained that the natives they found there were related to the Polynesians, scattered over the region of the Pacific. Some of the least informed, and therefore less qualified to judge or form a correct opinion, have leaped to the conclusion that the inscriptions were written by these Polynesians, or their ancestors of the same races as themselves, either not knowing, or forgetting, that the Polynesians never made such characters or writings, and that the antiquities on Easter Island were different from those in the islands of the Polynesians proved to be their own work. The most positive proof that the inscriptions were not Polynesian work is furnished by the records of the several expeditions and visits of persons, in which it was found not possible to get rational translations from the natives found there of what these inscriptions were about; but, on the contrary, it is shown that each native gave a different interpretation of what he thought, but did not know, these inscriptions and writings contained, or even had relation to. In the accounts furnished to the American, French, Spanish, German, Austrian, Netherlands, British, and other learned Societies, in the publications pertaining to the Easter Island natives or these inscriptions, no translation, even purporting to be correctly given by the natives, or any other person, is furnished of these inscriptions up to the present time, though numerous guessings, all different, are given by various persons.
The discovery of the key to these hieroglyphics, the methods upon which they were written, and their decipherment into the language in which they were written, or rather in which they were engraved by the scribes upon the tablets, and the translation from the original language into the English, will make available the information they contain; and these old inscriptions will hereafter possess, for the antiquarian, the historiographer, the ethnologist, and others, a very considerable interest, and they will be of the greatest value, as they contain the histories, the thoughts, the knowledge and much else, not only of the ancestors of the peoples who came to this island of the Pacific Ocean, but more important than these, the histories of nations, races, clans, tribes, and mixed peoples who lived in South-Western America, and which have been in no other manner recorded in histories by their own scribes, which have come down to our times; so that we thus regain through these inscriptions, not only the ideas, but the very words of their prayers, and their modes of addressing their household and national deities, the methods of worshipping and regarding their ancestral spirits (who became their deities), the kind of adoration of the priests, chiefs, and people in their worship, both
public and private, and much else relating thereto, and showing the real instead of the fanciful ideas, as imagined by recent writers, of what these old peoples believed and really held with regard to their "sun-worship." We find that their "sun-myths" in reality regarded the sun as the home of their ancestors' spirits, and in their mode of addressing the sun it was actually only an abbreviated form of addressing these spirits of the ancestors in their home in the sun, which was their heaven or celestial region, the paradise of their forefathers' souls. Upon examining the histories found to be engraved on these inscriptions, much light is thrown upon the migrations, the intermarryings, the fightings, the conquests and drivings out, or the enslavings and the regaining of their freedom again; also their clan and tribal origins and race relationships. While some of these narratives may have been from oral traditions, others must have been from older documents or writings, as in some of these inscriptions several lines of quotations of precisely the same compound hieroglyphics are copied without any variation of any kind, although in part of the line before, and the one after, it is altogether different.
In some instances these inscriptions confirm the writings of the early Spanish authors, but in other instances they do not; but they give a clearer and evidently a better account of the circumstances they relate.
As these inscriptions were not written with the same object in view as historians now write, but were composed to briefly narrate to their own people what had happened to their forefathers, or their neighbours in the past, with the object of defining clan, tribal, or the chieftains's relationships: they do not go into long explanations or details, as they might have done if they had intended them for the perusal of foreigners. This makes them more reliable, so that we may pick out the information or the truths they contain about the old tribes, clans, or races from which these people had sprung, and thus we can learn much, that without these inscriptions would have been lost for ever, concerning the races or the nations in Ecuador, Columbia or in Quito, and in the Colla or Aymara countries, or around the lake regions of Titicaca, in which such great stone ruins as those near Tia-huanuco are still to be found. The Inca monarchs of Peru tried to destroy all histories except their own, and also tried to enforce their own rule, and the belief in their own miraculous origin, so that little of the history of the earlier or the neighbouring natives has been transmitted to the present times, although several of these nations wrote in hieroglyphics as well as in phonetic characters, but little of these, except these Easter Island inscriptions, have been preserved about the people who dwelt in the countries between the Andes or the other mountains and the coast of the Pacific, and still less is known of where any of these people came from, or which they themselves
regard as their primal or subsequent homes or stopping-places; but in these Easter Island inscriptions such primary and secondary homes of the various clans and tribes are noticed, and referred to frequently. The totemic-system, or crest-name of families or clans, as it is found in North America, in Asia, or in Europe among the Plantagenets = the Yellow-brooms, the Colonas = the Columns or Pillars, the Columbs = the Pigeons, and many others, is also found among the South-Western Americans, and is generally used and written in these Easter Island inscriptions, where we find the Chimborazos = a clan from the snowy mountains, the Atahuallpas = the Turkey-cocks, the Tula or Tolla or Tulapin = the Turtles, the Rapa,the Cha-Rapa and others. They spoke and wrote of their enemies as the bad serpents or snakes, and of their wise men or their teachers as the wise or the good or the feathered snakes; while birds and feathers became or rather remained and retained in these inscriptions the signification of emblems, or came to signify chiefs, princes, or rulers, or the spirits of the dead, or similar noble objects. The Sun, Moon, stars, rainbow, and other things in the sky symbolized the spirits of their dead ancestors and the deities. These totemic crests and symbolic names found in these inscriptions are traceable back step by step through all the stations or stopping-places of the clans and tribes from the southwestern parts into the central, and then to North America, and through that continent again back further to Asia: through all these distant and long wanderings we can trace the same names of the families. Sometimes they translate them from one dialect or language to another; thus Hindi becomes Indi, Sindi, Hindu, Yinti, Inti, Inta, Inka, Inca, Yndi, &c., as we follow these Turanian and other families from high Asia to its eastern coasts, and then across the islands to North America, thence to Central and thence to South-Western America. In all these regions these names bore relation to the sun and the sky-families. While over the similar routes and lands another family and its descendants called themselves Ra, La, Rama, Lama, Rai, Lai, Kai, Khai, Tai, Thai, Ti, Li, Line, Ray, Raymi, &c. This was also a sun and sky-family, as expressed in ancient and other languages, from high Asia across to North, to Central, and to South America, and also is found through the Eastern Archipelago and the Pacific Ocean islands. When we carefully examine the ancient histories as they were written in the most early times, or the traditions as told from fathers to sons, we shall find that these names are not accidental coincidences, but are the same names, retained with these modifications in the different changes of dialect and modes of speech as these people, after leaving their old homes, moved from station to station in their march onwards during their migrations __ their intercrossings with the other peoples they encountered leading to these changed forms of words or proper names. Another name for a country and the people thereform that we find in these inscriptions ,
and that can be followed and traced out from the highlands and other parts of Asia, is Tu, or To, or Turan, or Tolan, or Tula, meaning the land of Tu, and Tu, To, Toa meaning a warrior, Tula and Tura, &c., names for a Turtle, or "the armoured one," as it means in both Asian and American languages. Tu became the warrior god in several combinations and languages as Tu-nibal in South-Western America. Some have confused this root, stem, &c., with the somewhat similar Tur; but this means a son or inheritor, as used in several languages. We find these names and roots in the oldest known languages, and in the Akkad, the Sumir, the Tatar, and others of high Asia; and from there we trace them through Eastern Asia, thence across the islands to Northern America, and in many parts of it, until we follow it to the Mexican highlands, where Tu-la, To-la, Tul-lan, Tul-te-can, &c., in the inscriptions in diverse dialects, it is frequently found; thence it passes through various places in Central America, and onward until it reaches Quito, Peru, and other parts of S.W. America; and it is found in the inscriptions of Easter Island. In some tribes and clans of America, they speak in their traditions of Tu-la, as their warrior; and in others of Tu-la-pi, and Tu-la-pin = "the Turtle Land," and "the Turtle people." A closely allied and related people were the Rapa __ "the Tortoises;" and the Cha-Rapa __ "the Small Tortoises __ also nearly connected with them; and these are all frequently mentioned in these Easter Island inscriptions, the Rapa people giving their name to that island. It would appear to be evident that the present Polynesians' ancestors, when they reached Easter Island, must have obtained this name from the American migrants there, as they still continued to call it Rapa, and added the adjective Nui = "great," to the name of Rapa, translating it into Rapa-nui, or Great Rapa, and styling Oparo Isle, from which they had come, Rapa-iti = "Little Rapa," thus making it correspond with Cha-Rapa, as it was called in the language of the Americans and the inscriptions, these migrants having also reached that isle of Oparo in the low archipelago, and built one of their hill-forts there.
There is another name that is very prominent all over the abovenamed widely spread region from Asia to America, which, as we follow it from station to station in the migrations, we find changed from one language into another, but always with the same two meanings, that is to say: sometimes it is used for foes, enemies, or oppressors; and at other times for wise-men, or teachers, or distinguished persons, or spirits, or deities; this name is serpent or snake. It is thus found in the oldest writings, in the Akkadian, the Sumirese, the Chaldean, the Egyptian, the Ethiopian, the Arabian, the Indian, the Chinese, the Tatar, the Indo-Chinese, the North American, the Central American, and S.W. American, and in the
Easter Island inscriptions. This name of snakes is thus used, we find, in hundreds of the dialects and languages of the above-named regions; and in the inscriptions of Easter Island it is often used in both of these meanings. Wherever we find the word snake with these two significances, we shall by full research be able to trace it back to its Asian home; and a careful analysis of this term will show us why the snake has been connected with two such opposite ideas, as enemies and oppressors, or teachers, rulers, and protectors. The reason is, that one was connected with the sky and the deities; the other with the demons, or under-the-earth enemies and opponents. In old Chaldea and Akkadia, Anu __ the sky god, or deity of the abyss __ as his name shows, was the sky snake, viz. = "the lightning"; as A is = "star," or = "deity;" N is = "sky," ="abyss;" and U is = "snake;" in after times he became the chief of the spirits, deities and protector; whereas Ti-an, and Tiam, and Tiamat __ =the demons or snakes of the earth __ were the enemies with whom the conflicts with the sky-spirits were carried on; and these dragons and snakes of the earth, or below the earth, were the oppressors of men, the evil spirits. From these olden times the term snakes has been used, by all people who derived their ideas from the Turanians, in these two opposite and diverse senses; and in the minds of these people there was no vagueness or contradiction in using the term snakes to imply such different things as enemies and teachers; and they had no difficulty in distinguishing the snakes they thus were speaking of, though sometimes they added some other word as good, or feathered, to the term snakes.
Without a clear comprehension of the totemic names, and the epithets applied to the teachers, the chiefs, the friends, or the enemies, these inscriptions we are considering would be less easily understood, but with this they are quite clear to anyone acquainted with the languages of the writers, or those for whom they were written. Such phrases as yntin = the sun's, or yntirunantin = the sun's men and their belongings, or yntichuri = the sun's children, and many such phrases which so frequently are found in these inscriptions all mean that they were considered to be of the families of the peoples whose ancestral spirits were in the sun, and who would thus reverently regard the sun as the home of the spirits of their dead relations, and to which their spirits after death would return, and from which their spirits had been derived; as well as their protecting spirits or deities being found in the sun. Therefore all the sun's families were spoken or written of in this manner with more or less respect, while all others, not so related to the sun, were considered or regarded as barbarians and outcasts. The term loved, or beloved, tribe is very frequently found in these inscriptions, as applied to their own or any confederated tribes.
The Easter Island inscriptions not only relate to events and circumstances which happened during hundreds of years, or from 600 A.D. to about 1300 A.D., but covered what had occurred over very wide regions, and the originals must have been engraved or written by very different scribes, and these in different ages, as in the earlier inscriptions the grammars as well as the vocabularies present considerable differences, for while in the later inscriptions the sentences are often as elegant and polished as was the Quichua speech during the times of the later monarchs at Ccuzeo, in the earlier inscriptions the grammatical rules are not so closely attended to, and instead of translating into their own language the names of persons, things, &c., these are introduced in the Colla or Aymara forms, or in the Caran, the Tschimu, the Manta, the Chimbo, the Quitiño, or the Caraban between which there was very little likeness as man in Quichua is = runa , in Aymara = hague , and in Tschimu= nofoen . Women, in these several languages, is respectively = huarmi, marmi, and mecherroec ; and in each of the other languages above named there is as great or even greater differences found. In the earlier inscriptions the names of persons and things are inserted without being translated, as though the scribes did not, for some reason, think it well to alter them from the original words or sounds. The scribes who wrote the earlier writings abbreviated where possible, to save trouble, or from some other reason; whereas in the later times they adopted the more complex grammatical forms for male and female pronouns, with the genders, numbers, cases, and the exclusive and inclusive forms carefully attended to. These inscriptions are very valuable, as showing the movements of peoples of distinct races in S.W. America so long ago, but more so as proving the sailings and voyagings over the Pacific Ocean for long distances in sailing vessels, navigated with certainty, to the intended ports for trade or other purposes, long centuries before Europeans knew of the Pacific Ocean. But in addition to what they contain and describe, these inscriptions are suggestive, for if the sailings took place to Easter Island, and over fifteen hundred miles beyond it to Oparo, why should the ever-venturesome and far-sailing Polynesians have stopped short and never have gone to Western America when we find such names for tribes there as, Tanga-nga, and such rivers as, Mauli (or Maori?)? These suggestions are impressed upon our minds; but if the inscriptions had only been able to remove the difficulties from "this mystery of the Pacific" the erections in Easter Island they would have still been very valuable, if for nothing more than this, of telling us who the people were who erected them.
EASTER ISLAND, when visited by Captain Cook, and navigators subsequently, was found to be inhabited by Polynesians in language and appearance, much like those in the Pau-motu, the Society, and other neighbouring groups. The traditions of these Easter Islanders said "that they had come from Rapa-iti, now called Oparo, to Rapa-nui," called by the English Easter Island. There were large statues, platforms or terraces of carefully constructed masonry, over vaults, houses of stone, and other structures in ruins, which indicated to those conversant with the antiquities of the Polynesians, and with the archaeology of other races, that some other people had lived upon this island as well as the Polynesians, but who or what they were, where they came from, or how long ago, remained a mystery, after all the various guessings by the travellers from many lands who had seen and examined the antiquities of this island. I found in the museums of England, America, Francs, Germany, and elsewhere, wooden tablets and other things, with inscribed characters upon them, that had been dug up or procured in Easter Island by the islanders, or by explorers who had been there. While trying to procure information from the curators, or others who had these inscriptions under their charge, as to what they meant, or what they related to, I was informed that, although attempts had been made to interpret them, none had succeeded in doing so, although many guesses had been made as to the purport of these inscriptions. Some said they were "picture writings," others that they were "hieroglyphic records," others that they were "phonetic characters of the Polynesians;" others said they were "symbolic genealogies, or lists of ancestors conventionalised." One gentleman, in giving his version of what they meant, at a meeting of the Anthropological Society, described them as "heronias." Then it was said that the natives recently upon the island could read and interpret them, but this proved upon strict examination to be erroneous, as they could not, and only gave their own fanciful names to, and views of, these
antiquities when the officers of expeditions there endeavoured to get the truth thereof from them.
Having for many years endeavoured to procure as many copies of these inscriptions as possible, and all the information in Europe or America that was available upon them, I have succeeded in securing some of these inscriptions, and all that had any bearing thereon that was in existence. While engaged in studying the languages, histories, antiquities, and inscriptions of ancient American peoples, I came upon similarities to the Easter Island characters, &c.; with these, as keys, discovered what certain groups expressed, and from these, proceeding upon the recognised methods of decipherment, succeeded in reading, into the original languages, and from these, translating into English, these Easter Island inscriptions. In ancient America, from the northern "Lenipe" to the nations in "Anahuac," from these through Central America, and thence onward to what is now Peru, to Bolivia, and to Chili, many of these peoples used hieroglyphic, phonetic, and other writings before the Inca monarchs interdicted their use, and endeavoured to blot them out of existence, so as to secure their conquests, and make the conquered forget their earlier histories and mythologies, and the writings in which they were inscribed. Many of these old peoples of Western America sailed and traded over wide regions of the Pacific Ocean, long before Europeans went there. One of such places to which they sailed was Easter Island, then much larger than it is at present. But as this will be more fully set out on another occasion, we refrain from further pursuing this subject here. Having been requested to contribute one or two of the interpretations of the Easter Island inscriptions to the periodical of the Polynesian Society, I have much pleasure in doing so. Those I offer are from a copy of the inscriptions kindly forwarded to me by S. Percy Smith, Esq., one of the chief officers and promoters of the Polynesian Society, whose earnest labours for Polynesian linguistics, ethnology, &c., have so distinguished him, and have caused him to assist the researches of others engaged in similar studies. (See accompanying Plate.) The copy I obtained from this gentleman is so clear that it is much more easy to read than others, in which some of the characters are obscure, or obliterated by faulty preservation or constant use; but the inscriptions I send, being merely invocations to their ancestral spirits or deities, are less historically valuable than others hereafter to be published, but which will require somewhat lengthened commentaries to make them understood by those not well up in the national lore to which they pertain. The texts of the languages, with a lexicon and grammar of these, will also be presented, as there are in these inscriptions words and phrases from the Toltecan, Queché, Aztecan, Tschimu, Carañ, Quito, Bacatan, Quichua, Muiscan, Collan, and others. Some of these are only borrowed words, but others by their altered case-endings, suffixed genders,
and different grammatical structure, give evidence that a mixture of peoples, as voyagers and residents, took place among those who came to Easter Island in the olden times, more than five hundred years ago. But these and other such details must wait for future opportunities, and I now proceed to give the interpretations of some of these inscriptions from Easter Island, keeping as near to the original texts as possible, thus accounting for the peculiar phraseology.
The underwritten is a translation close to the original text of a prayer for general health and increase of crops, by the priests and a priestess, or wife of the chief, joining in this petition to the ancestral spirits :
"To those who are our Guardians, oh give ear to us in your temple. You are our protectors. You are the good spirits of our ancestors. I, and we, know you as the Chiefs who are the powerful protectors to these sons of the Sun-chiefs. Ye gods of strength increase their strength, they implore ye as the Masters, wearers of the royal ornament, as the Guardian deities. Yours it is to give ear, and hear. The Sun-chief's bird that calls every hour, the Sun-chief and the Sun-chief's wife, to whom the royal band was bestowed. This good bird of the Sun-chief's is our messenger to the ancestors. Hear all messages to the end, oh excellent Masters, from these, the sons of the ancestors. Oh! our protectors, the Sons of the field, the good Ancestors who are worshipped, your bones are in the house of stone. You protectors of the house, of the clan, and of the families of us. At this terrace is the wife at this terrace of the Turtle, where the good Sun is enthroned, and the Ancestors are gathered, and their sons with them, and where the Lightning comes. Give us increase. From the cave vaults let it be Officers of us all you are. The representative images of the good Vira of the sea, of the good Sun, of the sacred and good Turtle, let them all give ear to these requests. The Masters in their houses, in the Sun, and of the springs. You are the Inspectors, the Judges. Good Spirits of the groves, the strong son by Viro of the Cave; the Wise one, the Watcher, the bird of the Sun; oh! happy Star of the year; ye guardian deities, near your sacred stone-pillars, in the sepulchral labyrinths; strong Controller of the day; the chief son of his mother; the Sun-year it is. Master of the termination of the cycle; in the sacred Sun-temple there is a good descendant of our dead ancestors, and they who are their sons, and the wives of the Sun-chiefs. The Supreme power; the sacred Fire, so good; thelabyrinthine caves of the dead ancestors, and the twin children of the Sun, give ear to us through the fleet messengers. Wife of the Master Defender, at this Turtle terrace grant us this to be a good year, for thy sons we are. Thou art Chief, and the Supreme."
The next that we give is the prayer of a woman, a chief's wife, offered through the priests, who are interceding for her to the ancestral spirits that she may have a son.
"By the Sun-controller, the circle on the good rock near the centre, and its throne of the gnomon; by the mothers of the sacred ancestors; by the sacred women who were of these ancestors; by the family and the clan in their sacred temple; by the protectors thereof and the Masters; by the oracle, the sepulchres of the good temple; by the love for the ancestors we have, and for sacred things, we, the sons of these ancestors, wearing the ornament of royal and sacred feathers. Give increase to this woman; permit her to have a son of her own blood, thus to increase in her a love towards you. By this good towards her you will be good to us all, and do good to all of us. By this Sepulchre of the Turtle, which so good is; by this Turtle terrace to its extreme end, where is deposited the royal and sacred ornament; by the Sepulchre of the Protecting Spirits, for good are they, at the centre. For this son prayed for shall be dedicated and placed on this terrace a sacred stone among the guardian spirits for this son, who shall represent the
strong god, who was a son of these ancestors, who are now good spirits, from the Virgins who are Sacred. He is represented upon this terrace, the chief of the happy spirits of the ancestors, and his wife, good are they, and they are good as the protectors of cultivations. Their bodies were dead, and preserved in this terrace of the Turtle; their spirits are in the Sun. A son by this their daughter I, and we, entreat of these sons of the ancestors who, in the golden fields, are joyful and happy. By their sepulchres we implore for this son, and hope for him from the Masters, the deities of the households, and of the food, and of Vira of the sea, and of Vira worshipped among the ancestors, and of those good ones of earth, and of the rocks, and the Master of Gold, and the chief of them, and by him of the good gnomon, the Sun of the terraces, the Master to them and theirs, this woman now by this terrace, appeals and prays."
The next underwritten is a prayer by the priests and a priestess upon the day fixed by them for the Sun's rest, or solstice, for the success and harvesting during the planting season, and for fall crops, to the deities.
"Prepare we, and offer of the good maize drink, by the good priests of the Sun, at the Sun's throne, through the Ministers, to the ruler, and also to the Rainbow, as children of the Sun, at the Sun's circle and temple. The daughters and sons of Vira of the Sea offer to the sacred spirits this offering from them, and of the good mothers of Tulan. To the Sun, the oca food; and to their Ancestors, bones, on this day when the Sun is bound, when the Sun seizes and consumes, the sacrifice. His sons to him present, through the deities of the household, and the sons of the Wise ones, gods of the Sun's seat (the gnomon) and the gods of the household, the Good and Wise ones. By his sons, hear the woman's prayer, all ye good Teachers assist the loving woman at the sepulchre of the people of Tulan, in which is their dead; in this extremity of love therein, this woman places her trust. At the good Sun's seat are our teachers, and this Chief Mother of the Vestals, give ear to us, oh sacred Protectors. By this terrace of the protecting spirits, the sons of the strong God are here, he is the chief of the sons of the sacred Sun. We seize upon this good one, from his litter of clouds, to his temple bring the oca root food, and the remains of the children of the Sun, of the extremest good are they, the Protecting spirits, with good Llam-pallec, and the Sun, and his sons, they and the Guardians, this prayer to them all, their sons we are, oh good Sun, and the Guardians and Protectors of this clan. Their Sun, and the Star of Tulan, in the temple of their forefathers, who are overlooking them, with the sacred crystals, these Sun- fathers and their good wives, at our and their sepulchre, the chief hope is by their son and by the Virgins. By the Officers, the Sun was fixed, he increased over the clouds happily. Give ear then and hear, oh ye Sun-spirits, ye Guardians, and ye good daughters, and their Mother of the temple, the greatest of our hopes, a supply of oca root. This joyous day the good priests have brought the Sunto his rest. Let these sons of thine, the fleet messengers, the Eagle of the Andes, and the grand Vulture, from whose wings the feathers are taken that adorn the heads of the Sun-chiefs, and are in the head-bands of the chiefs of Tulan, and the dead children of the Sun are adorned with them. Then let them, our prayers, and this woman's, hear.
With the foregoing three translations we close the present communication, thinking these will occupy as much of the space in this issue of the periodical as will be available. On a future occasion, if it is desired, we may furnish others of these most interesting inscriptions that embrace most valuable information not otherwise preserved. The Society's periodical will thus be the first to publish the recovered knowledge of what these inscriptions were about, or contained, and make known that another ancient writing is deciphered.