Subgenation: The Theory of the Normal Relation of the Races; an Answer to “Miscegenation”

Subgenation: The Theory of the Normal Relation of the Races; an Answer to “Miscegenation”

John Bradburn Publishing
72 pages
Classification Number: CAGE E185.62.V24 1864

John H. Van Evrie (1814-1896)


  • I.—The Diversity of the Races.
  • II.—Miscegenation; or, the Mixture of the Races.
  • III.—The Future of the Races.
  • IV.—The Effect of Subgenation Upon the White Race.
  • V.—Subgenation, the Basis of Democracy.
  • VI.—Women and Subgenation.
  • VII.—Subgenation and the Presidential Election.
  • VIII.— The Recognition of the Confederate States.
  • IX.—The Millennium Solved.
  • X.—An Omen.


Scaliger quaintly observes “that nothing will sell better than a scurrile pamphlet,” and the extensive sale of a recent brochure, entitled “Miscegenation,” in which the most indecent doctrines are seductively inculcated under the garb of philosophy, seems to prove the assertion. While there is no excuse for the gross violation of natural instincts which that author recommends, yet there is probably some good reason why there is a want of a popular knowledge as to the true relation of the races. The juxtaposition of the Caucasian, Indian, and Negro races on this continent, in considerable numbers, has no parallel in history. If we except the Egyptians and the Carthagenians, there were no ancient nations which had other than a homogeneous population. A negro was a curiosity in Greece and Rome.   All modern Europe, from which we derive our language, is composed of one race or the varieties of it. The question, as to the proper relation of distinct races, is, therefore, a new one, and has been committed to this country for solution.

The writer to whom allusion has been made offers a solution, and it is no less a proposition than the annihilation of all the existing races and the formation of a new one! He proposes to bring this about by mingling the races, and has invented the word Miscegenation to express his idea (miscere, to mix; genus, a race). The suggestion of the word is a good one. The necessity of new terms to express the proper, as well as the improper, relation of the races on this continent has long been felt by thoughtful minds. The words slavery and slave are derived from Sclavi—Sclavonians, who were conquered by the Germans and reduced to abject bondage. The word, therefore, expresses a relation existing between persons of the same race, and not between those of different races. Hence it is a misnomer as applied to the American form of society. The present writer proposes to profit by the suggestion of the author of of “Miscegenation” and coin another word, long needed.  It is subgenation, from sub, lower, and generatus and genus, a race born or created lower than another; i.e., the natural or normal relation of an inferior to a superior race. The invention of new words has the high authority of Horace:

“Si forte necesse est
Indiciis monstrare recentribus abdita rerum.”

They were never so much needed as now. The simple truths—There is no slavery in this country; there are no slaves in the Southern States. We are fighting about a myth. For three centuries the Christian world was deluged in blood upon the assumption that there was a Holy Sepulchre at Jerusalem. There was no Holy Sepulchre there. The world was fighting on a false premise. This country is now repeating the same insensate folly.  In the following pages the writer proposes to show how and why this is so, to expose the errors and absurdities of the author of “Miscegenation,” and to give such a solution to the question of the proper relation of the races as shall commend itself to the conscience 0f every intelligent friend of Humanity…

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