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128 The National Music of America.
tracing the various tales to their source than Mr. Albert Matthews, of Boston, who we trust will some day write a monograph upon the subject, and who has aided the author greatly in compiling the following data.
The word " Yankee " seems almost always to have been applied to New Englanders, and was generally a term of mild sarcasm ; yet one authority makes the word to be an adjective expressing excellence. It is said to have been thus used by " Yankee Hastings," of Cambridge, in 1713, he employing the expressions, "A Yankee horse," "A Yankee team," as superlatives.
Probably the most generally accepted origin of the word is that the Indians applied it to the white settlers in New England, in a vain effort to say " Anglois " or " English." This theory derives some inferential support from the fact that the Indians had much difficulty in pronouncing the letter " L."