A discourse on the languages of Native Americans encountered by the early settlers written by Roger Williams, who was forced to leave Massachusetts and established Rhode Island. This early linguistic treatise gives rare insight into the early contact between Europeans and Native Americans.
Their Virgins are distinguished by a bashful falling downe of their haire over their eyes.
Roger Williams, as the Editors inform us, wrote this, his first published work, in 1643. As an early Anthropologist and Linguist, he mentions different dialects but does not distinguish greatly between the Algonkian tribes. Some words are similar to those of the Abenaki, one tribe found further to the west, but others are not.
I could do without his three verses of four lines each that are found at the end of each chapter, generally pontificating on the superiority of the Christian faith over the heathen, although Williams gained fame as much, or more, for his independent views on religious tolerance that landed him in hot water (as well as exile) from his fellow "Pilgrims".
Because there were no cameras or recordings at the time, we owe Roger Williams a great debt of gratitude for the little slice of history that he saved for us.