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Lfat, lying south of the sources of the Tacazza. Besides these divisions, there are several ports on the Red sea, under the gov ernment of Arab princes, who acknowledge the sovereignty of thr Grand Seignor; and several districts in the interior are occupied by independentibes.
Climate. The climate of Abyssinia is on the whole fine. The ranges of mountains, with which it is everywhere intersected, preserve the air cool, and afford a supply of water sufficient to maintain fertility. Mosi of the towns and villages are delightfully situated on the declivities of the mountains. The deep vallies, from the combined influence of heat and moisture, are somewhat unhealthy.
Soiland Productions.) In consequence of its physical structure, Abyssinia is exceedingly fertile, and is exempted in a great measure from the sand, which dooms so large a portion of Africa to sterility. Wheat is raised in considerable quantity in the high grounds, but the plant most commonly cultivated is teff, which grows on almost every soil, and affords the bread which is in universal use. Among the other vegetable products are the papyrus, so celebrated among the ancients as the original material of paper; balsam, myrrh and other odoriferous products, which are obtained along the coast of the Red sea.
Animals.] There is a great variety of wild animals. Among these are the hyænas, which appear to be the most fierce and untameable of all animals. lo most parts of the country they are found in vast numbers, and travellers are in continual danger from them. They are not naturally gregarious, yet sometimes assemble in vast troops, attracted by the scent of dead bodies, which according to the barbarous custom of the country are often left unburied. The elephant and rhinoceros are pomerous in the low grounds. Hippopotami and crocodiles ahound in all the rivers. The domestic animals are generally the same with those of Europe. The most remarkable is the Galla ox, which has horns of an enormous magnitude. Mr. Salt saw one four feet long, and 21 inches in circumference at its root.
Chief Towns.) Gondar, the capital of the kingdom of Amhara, is situated about 30 miles N. E. of the lake of Dembea. It contains 50,000 inhabitants, and is now in the hands of the Galla, together with the whole province in which it is situated.
Arum, the ancient capital of Abyssinia, lies about 150 miles N. E. of Goddar. It is distinguished for its magnificent ruins. Of these the most remarkable is a large obelisk, which stands in the middle of the principal square. It is 80 feet high and is composed of a single block of granite, curiously carved. The order of architecture is strictly Grecian. Axum contains at present about 600 houses. Adowa, 12 miles E. of Axum, is the capital of Tigre. It contains 8,000 inbabitants, and is remarkable for the extensive manufacture of cotton cloths. It is also the channel by wbich the communication between the coast and the interior is almost exclusively carried on. The other considerable towns in Tigre are Antalo and Dixan.
Masuah, the principal sea-port of Abyssinia, is situated in lat. 15° 34' N. on a small island in the Red sea, separated from the continent by a narrow channel. Its intercourse is chiefly with Mocha and Jidda, and the imports consist of cotton, spices, piece goods, lead, iron, copper, tin, and European manofactures. The exports are rhinoceros' horns, gold, ivory, honey, slaves and wax. The governor of the city ackoowledges the sovereignty of the Grand Seignor. Arkeeko is a sea-port, at the bottom of the bay of Masuah, and not far from the town of the same name.
Salt plain.] In the eastern part of the kingdom of Tigre is a large plain, about 4 days journey across, and corered with salt. The salt is perfectly pure and hard for about two feet deep; but that lying beneath is coarser and softer till purified by exposure to the air. It is cut with an adze into pieces, which not only serve as seasoning to food, but even circulate as money in Abys. sinia. The digging of the salt is attended with considerable danger, from the vicinity of the Galla, who frequently attack those employed, as well as the caravans which convey the salt to Antalo.
Population and Religion. The population is not less than 4,000,000. It consists partly of Abyssinians, partly of Arahs, partly of the Galla, together with some other negro tribes. The Abyssinians were converted from Judaism to Christianity prior to the middle of the fourth century, but their religion still retains many Judaical observances. They abstain from the meats prohibited by the Mosaic law; they practise circumcision, and keep both Saturday and Sunday as sabbaths. The Copric patriarch of Cairo is the nominal head of the church, and from him the Abuna or res. ident head receives his investiture. They have monasteries, both of monks and nuns. Their veneration for the Virgin is unbounded, their saints also are extremely numerous and surpass in miraculous power even those of the Romish calendar. This system of Christianity does not prohibit polygamy. The Galla were formerly idolaters, but a very large proportion of them have been recently converted to Mahometanism.
Political Condition. The kingdom of Tigre, the most powerful of the three states into which the country is divided, is under an Abyssinian prince whose power is unlimited; Amhara, originally the centre of the Abyssinian power, is now under a chief of the Galla, who is said to be able to bring into the field an army of 20,000 cavalry; the southern provinces of Shoa and Efat are under an Abyssinian prince, who is entirely independent of the sovereign of Tigre. These different states are constantly at war with each other, while at the same time the governors of the smaller provinces are almost continually rebelling against their sovereigns. Abyssinia thus presents a scene of perpetual bloodshed, from hostilities carried on in the very bosom of the country, nor is a single district for a moment secure from devastation.
Manners and Customs.) The manners of the Abyssinians are characterized by a peculiar barbarism and brutality. They seem to have no more regard for the life of a man than for that of a
brute. They kill each other on very triling occasions, and the dead bodies are left in the streets to be devoured by the dogs and hyænas. They eat the raw flesh of animals immediately after they are slain, while the blood is yet warm ; and when on a journey, it is a freqnent practice to cut steaks from living animals and then to drive them on, roaring under the pain of the wound.
The Galla.] The Galla are a savage people, who occupy large territories lying south of Abyssinia, and have overrun some of its finest provinces. Very little is known about them or the country from which they originated, but they appear to have been making coutinual progress for at least two centuries both towards the north and the south. They are of a brown complexion, hardy, and warlike, and particularly well 6tted for irregular and desultory warfare. Nothing, it is said, can be more uncouth than the aspect of this people, at least of those tribes who have made no alteration in their original rudeness. They plait their hair with the entrajls of oxen, and wear round their waists the same ornaments. They anoint their heads and bodies with melled grease, and, except a goat's skin round their shoulders, leave the rest of the body naked. The Galla are divided into various tribes, wbich are koown by distinct names.
IV. COUNTRIES SOUTH OF ABYSSINIA.
ADEL. This country lies on the coast immediately to the south-east of Abyssinia. The inhabitants are Mahometans. They are not united under one government, bot divided into a number of tribes which carry on almost perpetual war with Abyssinia.
BERBERA is the name of the district extending from Adel to cape Guardafui. It is more productive than any other part of the world in gums, myrrh and frankincense ; and the fame of Arabiak for these valuable aromatics is derived entirely from its being the channel by which the productions of this district are conveyed to foreign countries. Berbera, the principal town, is the seat of a great annual fair, which is pesorted to by caravans from it great distance in the interior. This country is iobatised by various tribes of the Somauli, many of whom appear to be very civjlized and commercial, and a recent traveller of intelligence has given it as his opinion that this would be one of the best routes for penetrating into the interior of Africa, particularly to the sources of the Bahr-el-Abiad.
THE COAST OF Ajan extends from cape Guardafui to the river Magadoxa, or from 3° to 11° 50' N. lat. A great part of it is sandy, fat and barren. According to Mr. Salt, it is chiefly inhahited by different tribes of the Somauli.
THE COAST OF ZANGUEBAR extends from the river Magadosa to cape Delgado, or from 3° N. to 10° ş. jai. It is inhabited by negroes, and is divided into several kingdoms, deriving ibeir names from their priocipal towns, which are as follows. 1. Magadora, situated on a bay at the mouth of the river of the same name, in Jat. 2° 8' N. It carries on considerable commerce, which is conducted by the Arabs. The interior of the kingdom is almost wholly unknown. The Portuguese were never able to obtain any footing here, owing to the determined opposition of the people; and all Europeans have uniformly experienced the most inhospitable treatment. 2. Melinda, the capital of the kingdom of the same pame, is situated on a bay in lat. 3° S. It is the seat of a very considerable trade, being resorted to by vessels from the Red sea, Persia, and the northern parts of lodia. The exports consist of gold, ivory, copper, wax and drugs, in exchange for silks, cottons, linen cloths, and European commodities. The city was formerly tributary to the Portuguese, but was wrested from them, more than a century ago, by the Arabs, in whose power it has ever since remained, and it is now seldom visited by European vessels. The interior of the country has not been er. plored by Europeans. 3. Mombaca, the capital of the kingdoin of Mombaca, is situated on an island in lat. 4° 40' S. It was for: merly occupied by the Portuguese, but they were expelled by the natives in 1631, and it is now rarely, if ever, visited by Eupean ships. It is much frequented, however, by the Arahs, who carry on an extensive trade. 4. Quiloa is built on an islaod, situated close to the main land, at the mouth of the river Convo, in lat. 8° 41' $. The Portuguese found it, in the beginning of the is. teenth century, the largest town in Eastern Africa, and the centre of an extensive commerce. They established ihemselves bere in 1529, but Mosambique being made the centre of their stitiements, Quiloa was suffered to fall into decay, and at last was wrested from them by the Imam of Mascat in Arabia, in whose possesion it still remains. It is now of liitle importance. The islands of Zanzibar or Zanguebar, Monfia and Pemba, which lie off the coast of the kingdom of Quiloa, are also depepdent on the Imam of Mascat.
THE COAST OF MOZAMBIQUE extends from cape Delgado to the mouth of the river Zambese, or from 10° to 19° s. lai. The city of Mozambique, situated on a small island in lit. 15° S. is the capital of all the Portuguese possessions in East Africa. These possessions were at one time very extensive, embracing all the conotries on the coast from the equator lo the southern tropic, tot those situated to the north of the parallel of 10° 8. lat. have been successively wrested from them, and their dominion is now bound ed by cape Delgado on the north and cape Corrientes on the south. The city of Mozain beque retains sew traces of its former importance. The trade, which consists chiefly in the export of gold, ivory and slaves, has much declineil, and the population is estimated by Mr. Sait at only 2,800, of whom 500 are Portuguese
300 Arabs, and 1500 negroes. Quilimane, a small town with a fort and Portuguese garrison, is situated on the river Zambese near its mouth. It is the depot of the merchandize carried up the river, and of the ivory and gold brought from the interior.
The country in the interior, behind the coast of Mozambique, is inhabited by the Makooa, a powerful race of negroes, who cherish the most inveterate enmity to the Portuguese, and often cxtend their ravages to the coast, immediately opposite the city of Mozambique. The islands of Querimba extend along the coast of Mozambique, to the south of cape Delgado, and the part of the coast lying opposite to them is sometimes called the coast of Querimba.
THE COAST OF SOFALA extends from the mouth of the Zambese to cape Corrientes, or from 19° to 23° 48' S. lat. The principal rivers which intersect this territory, are, the Zambese, a large river which forms the northern boundary, and discharges itself into the Indian ocean through many mouths near lat. 19° S. ; the Sofala, which falls into the sea in lat. 20° 15' S.; the Sabia, which empties itself in 21° 10' S. lat. ; and the Inhambane, which runs into the ocean in 23° 15' S. lat. The countries lying immediately on the Sabia and the Iphambane are sometimes called after the names of the rivers.
The principal settlements of the Portuguese in this country are, 1. Sena, situated on the river Zambese, about 250 miles from its mouth. It contains about 2,000 inhabitants ; is protected by a strong fort; and forms the centre of the trade carried on with ibe interior, wbich consists chiefly in the export of ivory and gold dust. 2. Sofula, situated near the mouth of the river of the same name, was formerly a place of great commercial importance, being the depot of the gold and irory brought down the great river Zambese, but since the establishment of Quilimane, at the mouth of that river, Sofala has sunk into comparative insignifi cance. The Portuguese also maintain forts for the protection of trade on the river Ioharabane and at.cape Corrientes.
Mocaranga and Botong are extensive countries in the interior behind the coast of Sofala. Very little, however, is known about them. Mocaranga is said to be divided into a great number of independent states. Zimbao is the capital.
General Remark.) Very little is known respecting Central Africa South of the mountains of the Moon every part of it is wholly unknown ; and north of those mountains, there are very few districts which have ever been visited by Europeans.