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the terra or insipid earth remaining, affords no black at all, but serves in many things for a gross and useful red. And though spirits of vitriol, projected upon a decoction of galls, will not raise a black, yet if these spirits be any way fixed, or return into vitriol again, the same will act their former parts, and denigrate as before. And if we yet make a more exact enquiry, by what this salt of vitriol more peculiarly gives this colour, we shall find it to be from a metalline condition, and especially an iron property or ferreous participation. For blue copperas? which deeply partakes of the copper will do it but weakly, verdigris which is made of copper will not do it at all. But the filings of iron infused in vinegar, will with a decoction of galls make good ink, without any copperas at all; and so will infusion of load-stone, which is of affinity with iron. And though more conspicuously in iron, yet such a calcanthous or atramentous quality we will not wholly reject in other metals; whereby we often observe black tinctures in their solutions. Thus a lemon, quince or sharp apple cut with a knife becomes immediately black. And from the like cause, artichokes. So sublimate beat up with whites of eggs, if touched with a knife, becomes incontinently black. So aqua fortis, whose ingredient is vitriol, will make white bodies black. So leather, dressed with the bark of oak, is easily made black by a bare solution of copperas. So divers mineral waters and such as participate of iron, upon an infusion of galls, become of a dark colour, and entering upon black. So steel infused, makes not only the liquor dusky, but, in bodies wherein it concurs with proportionable tinctures, makes also the excretions black. And so also from this vitriolous quality, mercurius dulcis, and vitriol vomitive, occasions black ejections. But whether this denigrating quality in copperas proceedeth from an iron participation, or rather in iron from a vitriolous communication; or whether black tinetures from metallical bodies be not from vitriolous parts contained in the sulphur, since common sulphur containeth also much vitriol, may admit consideration. However in this way of tincture, it seemeth plain, that iron and vitriol are the powerful denigrators.3
? copperas.] Reade copper-tust, and * But whether, &c.] First added in 3rd soe itt is.-Wr.
Such a condition there is naturally in some living creatures. Thus that black humour by Aristotle named bonds, and commonly translated atramentum, may be occasioned in the cuttlefish. Such condition there is naturally in some plants, as black-berries, walnut-rinds, black-cherries; whereby they extinguish inflammations, corroborate the stomach, and are esteemed specifical in the epilepsy. Such an atramentous condition there is to be found sometime in the blood, when that which some call acetum, vitriolum, concurs with parts prepared for this tincture. And so from these conditions the Moors might possibly become Negroes, receiving atramentous impressions in some of those ways, whose possibility is by us declared.
Nor is it strange that we affirm there are vitriolous parts, qualities, and even at some distance vitriol itself in living bodies; for there is a sour stiptick salt diffused through the earth, which passing a concoction in plants, becometh milder and more agreeable unto the sense; and this is that vegetable vitriol, whereby divers plants contain a grateful sharpness, as lemons, pomegranates, cherries, or an austere and inconcocted roughness, as sloes, medlars and quinces. And that not only vitriol is a cause of blackness, but the salts of natural bodies do carry a powerful stroke in the tincture and varnish of all things, we shall not deny, if we contradict not experience, and the visible art of dyers, who advance and graduate their colours with salts. For the decoctions of simples which bear the visible colours of bodies decocted, are dead and evanid, without the commixtion of alum, argol and the like. And this is also apparent in chemical preparations. So cinnabar becomes red by the acid exhalation of sulphur, which otherwise presents a pure and niveous white. So spirits of salt upon a blue paper make an orient red. So tartar, or vitriol upon an infusion of violets affords a delightful crimson. Thus it is wonderful what variety of colours the spirits of saltpetre, and especially, if they be kept in a glass while they pierce the sides
4 salts.] And allums, which are a kind excellent red inke.-Wr. of salte.---Wr.
tartar.] A drop of the oyle of suls cinnabar. ] Soe the oyle of tartar pour- phur turns conserve of red roses into a ed on the filing of Brasil wood make an scarlat.-Hir.
thereof; I say, what orient greens they will project. From the like spirits in the earth the plants thereof perhaps acquire their verdure. And from such solary* irradiations may those wondrous varieties arise, which are observable in animals, as mallard's heads, and peacock's feathers, receiving intention or alteration according as they are presented unto the light.
Thus saltpetre, ammoniack and mineral spirits emit delectable and various colours; and common aqua fortis will in some green and narrow-mouthed glasses, about the verges thereof, send forth a deep and gentianella blue.
Thus have we at last drawn our conjectures unto a period; wherein if our contemplations afford no satisfaction unto others, I hope our attempts will bring no condemnation on ourselves : for (besides that adventures in knowledge are laudable, and the essays of weaker heads afford oftentimes improveable hints unto better,) although in this long journey we miss the intended end, yet are there many things of truth disclosed by the way; and the collateral verity may unto reasonable speculations somewhat requite the capital indiscovery.
Great wonder it is not, we are to seek, in the original of Ethiopians, and natural Negroes, being also at a loss concerning the original of Gypsies and counterfeit Moors, observable
many parts of Europe, Asia and Africa.
* Whence the colours of plants, &c. may arise.
Chap. xiii & xiv first appeared in 2nd While the progress of science and
the discoveries which reward the patience concerning the original of Gypsies.] and acuteness of modern investigation, This question, unlike the greater number are daily affording us satisfactory explaof those which have occupied the atten nations of various phenomena in nature, tion of Sir Thomas, would seem less and the origin of Gypsies is a question which less likely to be answered, as years roll the lapse of time is daily removing fur
Common opinion deriveth them from Egypt, and from thence they derive themselves, according to their own account hereof, as Munster discovered in the letters and pass which they obtained from Sigismund the emperor. That they first
ther from our reach. Little has therefore Arabia Deserta and Petræa, then too narbeen done towards its solution, but to row to contain them, into the neighbour. collect and compare former opinions and ing country of Egypt. So that both the speculations. The criterion, which seems African and Asiatic shores of the Red the most to be relied upon, is that of Sea became inhabited by these nomadic language. Sir Thomas gives us no autho- Arabs. He therefore rather inclines to rity for his assertion that the dialect of the suppose the Gypsies, who made their ap. Gypsies is Sclavonian: an assertion which pearance in Europe in the early part of inclines him to the opinion that they came the 15th century, to have been a migraoriginally from the north of Europe. A tion of these Arabs, whose country had very different theory was suggested by been the theatre of the ferocious contests Büttner, and advocated after great labor between Tamerlane and Bajazel-than and research with every appearance of to have been Suders driven from India probability, by Grellman. He has given by Timur Beg. In corroboration of his a comparative vocabulary shewing a strik- theory he remarks, the greater propining affinity between the Gypsy and Hin- quity of Arabia and Egypt to Europe. doostanee languages. Capt. Richardson, He concludes by noticing a subsequent in the Asiatic Researches, (vol. vii, p. 451) migration led from Egypt, a century has carried the point still further, and later, by Zinganeus—when that counestablished an affinity between them and try was invaded by Solyman the Great. a tribe in India, called the Bazeegurs. The appellations Egyptians and ZisProfessor Pallas and other writers have ganees is readily accounted for on the remarked this similarity of language. supposition of this writer. We are not, Dr. Pritchard is decidedly of opinion that after all, perhaps, precluded from availtheir origin was Indian. Mr. Hoyland, ing ourselves, to a certain extent, of both of Sheffield, with the benevolent object theories. of bettering their condition, took great An amusing account is given, in the pains some years ago to investigate their Gentleman's Magazine, for Dec. 1801, of history, and especially their present state; a Gypsy supper in the New Forest. Dr. and published a volume on this subject, Knox relates, in his last Winter Evening, entitled, “ A Historical Survey of the the following incident, in proof of the Customs, Habits, and Present State of piety of the Gypsies: "A large party had the Gypsies," 8vo. York, 1816.
requested leave to rest their weary limbs, Brand, (in his Observations on Popular during the night, in the shelter of a barn; Antiquities, vol. ii, 432,) speaks of the and the owner took the opportunity of Gypsies as of Hindoo origin, probably of listening to their conversation. He found the lowest caste, called Pariars, or Su- their last employment at night, and their ders; and says, they probably emigrated first in the morning, was prayer. And about 1408, in consequence of the con- though they could teach their children quests of Timur Beg. Park mentions a nothing else, they taught them to suppliwandering tribe named Libey, whom he cate, in an uncouth but pious language, had seen in his travels in Africa, very the assistance of a friend, in a world similar in their habits and customs to the where the distinctions of rank are little Gypsies. A different solution has been regarded. I have been credibly informproposed by an anonymous writer in the ed, that these poor neglected brethren Gentleman's Magazine, (vol. lxxii, 291,) are very devout, and remarkably disposwho thinks it very probable that they are ed to attribute all events to the interpothe fulfilment of the prophecy in Gen. sition of a particular Providence." xvi, respecting the descendants of Ish It may be doubted, perhaps, with too mael. He observes that they inhabited much probability, whether his benevolent in the first place the wilderness of Paran; inference in their favour would be borne that they increased prodigiously, and, out by more intimate acquaintance with under the appellation of Al Arab al mos their general character. tá-reba, or insitious Arabs, hived off from
came out of lesser Egypt, that having defected from the Christian rule, and relapsed unto pagan rites, some of every family were enjoined this penance to wander about the world. Or, as Aventinus delivereth, they pretend for this vagabond course a judgment of God upon their forefathers, who refused to entertain the Virgin Mary and Jesus, when she fled into their country.
Which account notwithstanding is of little probability: for the general stream of writers, who enquire into their original, insist not upon this; and are so little satisfied in their descent from Egypt, that they deduce them from several other nations. Polydore Virgil accounting them originally Syrians; Philippus Bergomas fetcheth them from Chaldea ; Eneas Sylvius from some part of Tartary; Bellonius no further than Wallachia and Bulgaria ; nor Aventinus than the confines of Hungaria. *
That they are no Egyptians, Bellonius maketh evident :t who met great droves of Gypsies in Egypt, about Grand Cairo, Matærea, and the villages on the banks of Nilus, who notwithstanding were accounted strangers unto that nation, and wanderers from foreign parts, even as they are esteemed with us.
That they came not out of Egypt is also probable, because their first appearance was in Germany, since the year 1400; nor were they observed before in other parts of Europe, as is deducible from Munster, Genebrard, Crantsius and Ortilius.
But that they first set out not far from Germany, is also probable from their language, which was the Sclavonian tongue; and when they wandered afterward into France, they were commonly called Bohemians, which name is still retained for Gypsies. And therefore when Crantsius delivereth, they first appeared about the Baltick Sea, when Bellonius deriveth them from Bulgaria and Wallachia, and others from about Hungaria, they speak not repugnantly hereto: for the language of those nations was Sclavonian, at least some dialect thereof.
But of what nation soever they were at first, they are now almost of all: associating unto them some of every country where they wander. When they will be lost, or whether at
Feynand. de Cordua didascal, multipl.
† Observat. 1. 2.