By Sir Godfrey Higgins : Osiris and his Bull were black; all the Gods and Goddesses of Greece were black: at least this was Black gods and goddessesthe case with Jupiter, Bacchus, Hercules, Apollo, Amnion.The Goddesses Venus, Isis, Hecati, Diana, Juno, Metis, Ceres, Cybile, are black. The Multimammia is black in the Campidoglio at Rome, and in Montfaucon, Antiquity explained.The Linghams in India, anointed with oil, are black: a black stone was adored in numbers of places in India.
It has already been observed that, in the galleries, we constantly see busts and statues of the Roman Emperors, made of two kinds of stone; the human part of the statue of black stone, the drapery white or coloured. When they are thus described, I suppose they are meant to be represented as priests of the sun; this was probably confined to the celebration of the Isiac or Egyptian ceremonies.
On the colour of the Gods of the ancients, and of the identity of them all with the God Sol, and with the Cristna of India, nothing more need be said. The reader has already seen the striking marks of similarity in the history of Cristna and the stories related of Jesus in the Romish and heretical books. He probably will not think that their effect is destroyed, as Mr. Maurice flatters himself, by the word Cristna in the Indian language signifying black, and the God being of that colour, when he is informed, of what Mr. Maurice was probably ignorant, that in all the Romish countries of Europe, in France, Italy, German, the God Christ, as well as his mother, are described in their old pictures and statues to be black.
The infant God in the arms of his black mother, his eyes and drapery white, is himself perfectly black. If the reader doubt my word, he may go to the cathedral at Moulins—to the famous chapel of the Virgin at Loretto—to the church of the Annunciata—the church of St. Lazaro, or the church of St. Stephen at Genoa—to St. Francisco at Pisa—to the church at Brixen, in the Tyrol, and to that at Padua—to the church of St. Theodore, at Munich, in the two last of which the whiteness of the eyes and teeth, and the studied redness of the lips, are very observable ;—to a church and to the cathedral at Augsburg, where are a black virgin and child as large as life:—to Rome, to the Borghese chapel Maria Maggiore—to the Pantheon—to a small chapel of St. Peter's, on the right-hand side on entering, near the door; and, in fact, to almost innumerable other churches, in countries professing the Romish religion.
Black madonnaThere is scarcely an old church in Italy where some remains of the worship of the Black Virgin and Black Child are not to be met with. Very often the black figures have given way to white ones, and in these cases the black ones, as being held sacred, were put into retired places in the churches, but were not destroyed, but are yet to be found there. In many cases the images are painted all over and look like bronze, often with coloured aprons or napkins round the loins or other parts; but pictures in great numbers are to be seen, where the white of the eyes and of the teeth, and the lips a little tinged with red, like the black figures in the Museum of the India Company, shew that there is no imitation of bronze. In many instances these images and pictures are shaded, not all one colour, of very dark brown, so dark as to look like black.
They are generally esteemed by the rabble with the most profound veneration. The toes are often white, the brown or black paint being kissed away by the devotees, and the white wood left. No doubt in many places, when the priests have new-painted the images, they have coloured the eyes, teeth, &c, in order that they might not shock the feelings of devotees by a too sudden change from black to white, and in order, at the same time, that they might furnish a decent pretence for their blackness, viz. that they are an imitation of bronze: but the number that are left with white teeth, &c, let out the secret.
When the circumstance has been named to the Romish priests, they have endeavoured to disguise the fact, by pretending that the child had become black by the smoke of the candles; but it was black where the smoke of a candle never came: and, besides, how came the candles not to blacken the white of the eyes, the teeth, and the shirt, and how came they to redden the lips? The mother is, the author believes, always black, when the child is. Their real blackness is not to be questioned for a moment.
If the author had wished to invent a circumstance to corroborate the assertion, that the Romish Christ of Europe is the Cristna of India, how could he have desired any thing more striking than the fact of the black Virgin and Child being so common in the Romish countries of Europe? A black virgin and child among the white Germans, Swiss, French, and Italians!!!
The Romish Cristna is black in India, black in Europe, and black he must remain—like the ancient Gods of Greece, as we have just seen. But, after all, what was he but their Jupiter, the second person of their Trimurti or Trinity, the Logos of Parmenides and Plato, an incarnation or emanation of the solar power?