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.
Page  9

CHAP. IV. Sacred and solemne rites and customes alike.

A Costaa affirmes the Americans to have cere∣monies and customes resembling the Mosaicall.

1. Circumcision b is frequent among the In∣dians, which some not observing, have thereupon de∣nyed them to be Judaicall, and Io. de Laetc is forced to acknowledge such venereous people have somewhat like to circumcision occasioned by their lasciviousnesse; but daily d experience declareth that they have indeed upon them this Judaicall badge. Herodotuse averreth the Colchi for this to be of the Aegyptian race, and that the Phenicians and Syrians of Palaestina learned from them that rite; and though some have judged the Tar∣tars to be Jewes, because circumcised, others f yeeld not to this, because they were Mahometans by Re∣ligion, and from them received that custome; but these people have cut off their foreskinne time out of minde, and it cannot be conceived whence they had this ceremo∣ny, but that it is nationall. And though the fore mentio∣ned g writer endeavours much to prove, that there is no circumcision among them, and that some other people be so handled, whom none yet ever imagined to be Judaicall, but that of Ier. 9. 26. is not so fitly I thinke cited for his purpose; and Grotius tells him h confidently, we have so many witnesses that the Americans be circum∣cised, as it becomes not a modest man to deny it; and among the rarities brought from those quarters, Panci∣rollusi speakes of stony knives, very sharpe and cut∣ting, Page  10 and his Illustrator kH. Salmuth, shewes that the Jewes of old did use such in their circumcisings, knifes of stone, which Sacrament omitted fourty yeeres in their travell, is revived by Gods command to Ioshua 5. 2. Make thee sharp knives, cultros petrinos; Arias Montanus reads, cultros lapideos in the vulgar Latine, but the Septua∣gint doth not only mention those rocky knives, but adds, taken from a sharpe rocke, as if the allusion also were to Christ, the Rocke, that doth circumcise our hearts; Leriusl affirmes he saw some of those cut∣ting stones or knives at Brasil.

2. The Indians worship that God m they say, who created the Sun, Moon, and all invisible things, who gives them also all that is good.

3. They knew of that floud which drowned n the world, and that it was sent for the sin of man, especially for unlawfull lust, and that there shall never be such a deluge againe.

4. It is affirmed by them o neverthelesse that after many yeers, fire shall come down from above and con∣sume all.

5. They beleeve the immortality of the soule, and that there is a place of joy, p another of torment af∣ter death, whither they shall goe that kill, lie, or steale, which place they call Popogusso, a great pit, like the expression, Num. 16. 33. and Rev. 19. 1, &c. but they which do no harme shall be received into a good place, and enjoy all manner of pleasure.

6. The Americans have in some parts an exact form of King, Priest, q and Prophet, as was aforetime in Co∣naan.

7. Priests are in some things among them, as with the Hebrewes, r Physitians, and not habited as other Page  12 men, and in Tamazulapa there be vestments kept like those Aaroniticall robes of the High-priest.

8. The Temples wherein they worship, s sing, pray, and make their Offerings, are fashioned and used as with the Jewes; at Mexico they were built foure square, and sumptuous, as Ezek. 40. 47.

9. The Priests have their Chambers t in the Temple, as the manner was in Israel. 1 Reg. 6▪ 7.

10. They had places also therein u, which none might enter into but their Priests. Heb. 9. 6, 7.

11. In their worship of Viracochew, and the Sun, &c. they open their hands, and make a kissing sound with their mouthes, as Iob 31. 27.

12. They had almost continuall fire before their Idols, and took great care lest the x fire before the Altar should dye, they call that the Divine Harth, where there is fire continually, like that in Leviticus 6. 9.

13. None may intermeddle with their Sacrifices but the Priests, y who were also in high estimation a∣mong them as they were among the Jewes.

14. Every Noble-man in Mexico z had his Priest, as Israel had the Levites within their gates.

15. In their necessities a they always sacrificed, which done, they grew hopefull and confident.

16. They burnt Incense, b had their Censars, and cake Oblations, as Ier. 7. 18.

17. The first fruits of their Corne c they offered, and what they gat by Hunting and Fishing.

18. At Mexico and some other places d they immolate the bodies of men, and as the Jewes of old, saith P. Martyr, did eate of their Beasts so sacrificed, they feed on mans flesh so offered.

Page  13 19. In all Peru they had but one Temple, e which was most sumptuous, Consecrated to the Maker of the world; yet they had foure other places also for Devotion, as the Jews had severall Synagogues, beside that their glorious Temple.

20. The Idols of America f were Mitred, in a manner, much as Aaron was.

21. A yeare of Jubile g did they observe, as did Israel also.

22. Lerius tells a story of them, h much like that of Apocryphall Bel, and the Dragon, and his Priests.

23. In their Idoll services they i dance and sing, men and women, almost as Miriam, with Tim∣brells, Exod. 15. 20. and then they offer bread, as it is in Malac. 1. 7.

24. They have hope of their bodies k resurre∣ction, and for that cause are carefull in burying their dead; and when they saw the Spaniards digging into Sepulchers for gold and silver, the Natives entrea∣ted them not to scatter the bones, that so they might with more ease be raised againe.

25. The Indians make account the world shall have an end, but not till a great drought come l, and as it were a burning of the aire, when the Sunne and Moone shall faile, and lose their shining; thence it is▪ that in the Eclipses of those two greater Lights, they make such yellings and out-cries, as if the end of all things were upon them.