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Theodore Roosevelt (1858–1919). Through the Brazilian Wilderness. 1914.

Page 45

the Indian tongues, being originally found in various closely allied forms not only in Paraguay but in Uruguay and over the major part of Brazil. It remains here and there, as a lingua geral at least, and doubtless in cases as an original tongue, among the wild tribes. In most of Brazil, as around Para and around Sao Paulo, it has left its traces in place-names, but has been completely superseded as a language by Portuguese. In Paraguay it still exists side by side with Spanish as the common language of the lower people and as a familiar tongue among the upper classes. The blood of the people is mixed, their language dual; the lower classes are chiefly of Indian blood but with a white admixture; while the upper classes are predominantly white, with a strong infusion of Indian. There is no other case quite parallel to this in the annals of European colonization, although the Goanese in India have a native tongue and a Portuguese creed, while in several of the Spanish-American states the Indian blood is dominant and the majority of the population speak an Indian tongue, perhaps itself, as with the Quichuas, once a culture-tongue of the archaic type. Whether in Paraguay one tongue will ultimately drive out the other, and, if so, which will be the victor, it is yet too early to prophesy. The English missionaries and the Bible Society have recently published parts of the Scriptures in Guaran&ygrave;; and in Asuncion a daily paper is published with the text in parallel columns, Spanish and Guaran&ygrave;—just as in Oklahoma there is a similar paper published in English and in the tongue which the extraordinary Cherokee chief Sequoia, a veritable Cadmus, made a literary language.