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SOME of these Maya-speaking peoples, following the migratory instincts inherited from their early ancestors, left the banks of the Euphrates and the city of Babylon, and went forth across the Syrian desert, toward the setting sun, in search of new lands and new homes. They reached the Isthmus of Suez. Pushing their way through it, they entered the fertile valley of the Nile. Following the banks of the river, they selected a district of Nubia, where they settled, and which they named Maiu,' in remembrance of the birthplace of their people in the lands of the setting sun, whose worship they established in their newly adopted country.2

When the Maya colonists reached the valley of the Nile, the river was probably at its full, having overflowed its banks. The communications between the native settlements being then impossible except by means of boats, these must have been very numerous. What more natural than to call it the Henry Brugsch-Bey, History of Egypt under the Pharaohs, vol. i., p. 363; vol. ii., pp. 78-174.


2 Thoth is said to have been the first who introduced into Egypt the worship of the "Setting Sun."

"country of boats "-Chem, this being the Maya for "boat"?

Be it remembered that boats, not chariots, must have been the main means of transportation among the early Egyptians. Hence, unlike the Aryans, the Greeks, the Romans, and other nations, they did not figure the sun travelling through the heavens in a chariot drawn by fiery steeds, but sailing in the sky in a boat; nor were their dead carried to their restingplace in the West in a chariot, but in a boat.1

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No doubt at the time of their arrival the waters were swarming with crocodiles, so they also naturally called the country the "place of crocodiles," Ain, which word is the name of Egypt on the monuments; and in the hieroglyphs

the tail of that animal stood for it. But Ain is the Maya for "crocodile." The tail serves as rudder to the animal; so for the initiates it symbolized, in this instance, a boat as well as a crocodile.3

"A real enigma," says Mr. Henry Brugsch, "is proposed


Sir Gardner Wilkinson, Manners and Customs, vol. iii., p. 178.

Henry Brugsch-Bey, Hist. of Egypt, vol. i., p. 10.

'Sir Gardner Wilkinson, Manners and Customs, vol. iii., p. 200.

to us in the derivation of the curious proper names by which

the foreign peoples of Asia, each in its own dialect, were accustomed to designate Egypt. The Hebrews gave the land the name of Mizraim; the Assyrians, Muzur. We may feel assured that at the basis of all these designations there lies an original form which consisted of the three letters M, z, r-all explanations of which have as yet been unsuccessful.” 1

It may be asked, and with reason, How is it that so many learned Egyptologists, who have studied the question, have failed to find the etymology of these words?

The answer is, indeed, most simple. It is because they have not looked for it in the only language where it is to be found -the Maya.

Egypt has always been a country mostly devoid of trees, which were uprooted by the inundation, whose waters carried their débris and deposited them all over the land. The husbandman, in order to plough the soil, had first to clear it from the rubbish; hence no doubt the names Misur, or Muzur, given to it by the Assyrians. Well, then, miz, in the Maya language, means "to clear away rubbish of trees," and muuzul "to uproot trees."

Not satisfied with these onomatopoetic names, they gave the new place of their adoption others that would recall to their mind and to that of their descendants the mother country beyond the western seas. We learn from the Troano MS., the Codex Cortesianus, and the inscriptions, that Mayach from the remotest ages was symbolized either as a beb (mulberry tree) or as a haaz (banana-tree); also by a serpent with inflated breast, standing erect in the midst of the waters

'Henry Brugsch-Bey, Hist. of Egypt, vol. i., p. 12.
Aug. Le Plongeon, Sacred Mysteries, p. 115, et passim.

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