Ievves in America, or, Probabilities that the Americans are of that race. With the removall of some contrary reasonings, and earnest desires for effectuall endeavours to make them Christian.
Thorowgood, Thomas, d. ca. 1669.

CHAP. II. The first Conjecture that the Americans are Jewes.

THE Indians doe themselves relate things of their Ancestors, a suteable to what we read of the Jewes in the Bible, and elsewhere, which they also mentioned to the Spaniards at their first ac∣cesse thither; and here the Speech of Myrsilusb oc∣curred as observable: if we would know, saith hee, the Antiquity and Originall of a Nation, there is more credit to be given to the Natives and their Neighbors, than to strangers, and Caesarc concluded the Britons to be Gaules, because that was the affirmation of them both. P. Martyrd tells at large, how Muteczuma the Page  4 great King of Mexico in an Oration made to his Nobles * and People, perswading subjection to the King of Spaine, minds his Countrey men, that they heard from their fore-fathers, how they were strangers in that land, and by a great Prince very long agoe brought thither in a Fleet, They boast their Pedigree from men preserved in the Sea by God himselfe, that God made one man, and one woman, bidding them live together and multi∣ply, and how in a Famine hee rained bread for them from Heaven, whō in a time of drought also gave them Water out of a Rock: many other things, themselves say were done for them, such as the Scriptures relate concerning the Israelites at their comming out of Ae∣gypt, as, their Peregrination many yeares, the Oracles they received, their Arke of Bulrush, wherein Vitzi-Liputzli was included, of the Tabernacle the Ark e car∣ried by foure Priests, and how they pitched their Tents according to its direction, and who seeth not saith Malvendaf much probability that the Mexicans are Iewes, how could they else report the manner of their comming into the promised Land; they affirme there is one chiefe God, who hath been from all eternity, by whom the lesser Gods were made, who became Assi∣stants in the Fabrick and Government of the World, as some of the g Rabbins also called the Angells Con-Creators with God, to whom the Lord did say, Let us make man in our Image, &c. Gen. 1. 26. The Indians judge the Sunne, Moone and Starres to be living crea∣tures, a thing a so avowed in the Jewish Talmudh, shewing it to be a thing easie enough for the Heavens to declare the glory of God, Psalme 19. 1. seeing they have understanding soules as well as men and Angels; they i say of themselves, that they be strangers, and Page  5 came from another Countrey. M•••…sk before na∣med doth not onely averre that many learned men in Brasile take the Natives to be Jewes, but that they themselves, taught by a most ancient Tradition, acknow∣ledge their fore-fathers to be of that linage; and Peter Martyrl hath from them also such a kinde of asser∣tion: And now whereas some conceive the ten Tribes to be either shut up beyond the m Caspian Moun∣taines, whence they could not get out, though they begged leave of Alexander the Great, yet the way was made miraculously unpassable against them, as the same Comester relateth: Others suppose n them to be utterly lost, and if once so, 'tis probable in the opi∣nion of some that they are to be found in America; oA∣costa acknowledgeth this to be the judgement of divers, to which he is not onely adverse himselfe, but endea∣vours to answer their Arguments, as will be shewd hereafter; to these conjectures of the Natives, let this Chapter bee concluded with the judgements of two others, that have reason for what they say, the first is pEmanuel de Moraes, forespoken of, affirming those of Brasile to be Judaicall: First, because those Brasilians marrie into their owne Tribe and Kin∣dred. Secondly, Their Manner is also to call their Uncles and Ants, Fathers and Mothers. Thirdly, they are given much to mourning and teares in their Funerall solemnities: And last of all, they both have Garments much alike. The next is Master qR. Williams, one of the first, if not the first of our Nation in New England that learned the Language, and so prepared towards the Conversion of the Natives, which purpose of his being knowne, hee was desired to observe if hee Page  6 found any thing Judaicall among them, &c. He kind∣ly answers to those Letters from Salem in New Eng∣land, 20th of the 10th moneth, more than ten yeers since, in hac verba. Three things make me yet suspect that the poore natives came from the southward, and are Jewes or Jewish quodammodo, and not from the Northern bar∣barous as some imagine. 1. Themselves constantly af∣firme that their Ancestors came from the southwest, and thither they all goe dying. 2. They constantly and strictly separate their women in a little Wigwam by themselves in their feminine seasons. 3. And beside their God Kuttand to the south-west, they hold that Nanawitnawit (a God over head) made the Heavens and the Earth, and some tast of affinity with the Hebrew I have found.