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to flow towards the north west on leaving the Nyanza, would speak in favor of the greater accuracy of M. Knoblecher's observations.
[For proceedings of the Roman Catholic missionaries on the Upper Nile, see the “ Annual Reports of the Society of Mary for Promoting Catholic Missions in Central Africa,” Vienna, since 1851. MM. Dovyak's and Knoblecher's observations have been reprinted from the “ Annals of the I. R. Institute for Meteorology and Terrestrial Magnetism,” Vienna, since 1859. Other Missionaries established in Abessinia (as Leon des Avanchers and Miani have published some information in the Journal of the Paris Geographical Society.]
After Captain Speke's return from the Nyanza, both travelers went back to Zanzibar, whence they embarked for Europe in March, 1859. Captain Speke is about to proceed again to the scene of his late discoveries, accompanied by Captain Grant.*
In the mean time a German traveler, Dr. A. Roscher, has made several attempts to penetrate into the interior, but hitherto his endeavors have been foiled by almost constant illness. In February, 1859, he made a journey by land along the coast from opposite Zanzibar to Kiloa, examining on the way the lower course of the Lufiji
. It was bis intention to proceed from Kiloa to Lake Niassi, but in October he had not yet left the coast, and the Arabs refused to take him inland, fearing he might die.
The Niassi or Nyanja, by older authorities called Lake of the Maravi, from a tribe occupying its western shore, was laid down on Portuguese maps as early as 1546 and 1623. In 1518, even, a large lake in the interior is mentioned by the Spaniard Fernandez de Enciso. Manoel Godinho, in his travels to India, in 1663, gives some more precise information, obtained from a Portuguese who had actually visited the country. He places the Southern extremity of the lake under 15° 50' S. lat., and the river Zachaf (Shire) connects it with the Zambezi below Sena. Gamitto (1831) states the lake to have a breadth of eighteen Portuguese miles, (thirty-three English,) but owing to the strong current it took two or three days to cross it, the canoes being pushed along by poles. According to him, the Shire or Little Nyanja had no communication with the lake. Dr. Livingstone, in his “ Missionary Travels in Southern Africa," tells us of a Senhor Candido, long a resident of Tete, who had visited the Nyanja lake. Traveling through the country of the Maravi, that gentleman came upon the lake in the country of the Chiva. It took thirty-six hours to cross the lake to the country of the Mujao (Wahiao.) In the middle of its southern end is a mountain island, cailed Murombo or Murombola, i. e., “where the waters divide.” Of two rivers which leave the lake, one is the Shire, and enters the Zambezi, the other, he says, flows towards the sea under another name.f Similar information was given to Captain Bedingfield (1858) by Colonel Nunes, at Quiliimane, who considered, however, the Nyanja as a chain of lakes.
From native sources we have obtained a number of routes leading to the lake, from Kiloa, Kisanga, and Mozambique. From Kiloa the distance is stated at from thirty to sixty days' journey, from Mozambique
Major Burton's account of the expedition is in the press. In the meantime we refer for further details to " Blackwood's Magazine," (Feb. to May, 1858, and Sept to Nov., 1859,) and to vol. xviii. of the - Journal of the Royal Geographical Society."
+ Both Leon des Avanchers and Dr. Krapf were told that the river Ruvuma took its rise from the large inland lake.
at thirty days. All routes agree in traversing near the lake the country of the Mujao or Wahiao, (Hiao,) and several pass through Lukelingo, (Keringo,) the capital of that country. At the southernmost ferry, persons on the opposite sides can speak' with each other, and it was probably here where Silva Porto crossed in 1854. At Mjenga, a little further north, the opposite shore can just be seen. Opposite to Moalo is a mountain Island, called Mbaazura on Erhardt and Rebmann's map, possibly the Murombo island of Senhor Candido. At Gnombo (Ngombo) the opposite shore only appears after three hours' rowing, and still further north the passage of the lake requires from two to three days. Nothing reliable is known regarding the extent of the lake further north; the missionaries and Mr. Cooley believe it to communicate with the Taganyika or Lake of Uniamesi; Captains Burton and Speke think that it terminates at about 10° S. lat., and Mr. MacQueen (“ Proceed. R. G. S.," vol iv., No. i.) looks upon the Nyanja as a large river, the bead stream of which is a river passing near Cazambe's Town.
These various conjectures we may confidently expect to see cleared up at an early date, by the labors of that indefatigable traveler, Dr. Livingstone. That gentleman returned in 1858 to the Zambezi in the character of British Consul, and after a minute examination of the river up to the Kabrabesa rapids, he ascended the Shire, and, leaving the steamer at 16° 2' S. lat., continued his journey by land to the Shirwa Lake, the existence of which had not hitherto been known to Europeans. This lake bas an elevation of 2,000 feet; it is surrounded by mountains, and said to be separated from the Nyanja or Nyenyesi (Star Lake) by a narrow strip of land only six miles wide; its waters are bitter, but drinkable. Later in the year Dr. Livingstone traced the Shire River to the point where it flows from the Lake Nyenyesi, (Nyanja or Niasse,) 14° 23' S. lat., 35° 30' E. long. From that point the lake appeared to stretch towards the N.N.W., and upon its horizon appeared an island, which .may be identical with the mountain island mentioned above. According to native testimony the lake subsequently turns towards the sea.
COMMERCE OF AFRICA.
The geographical configuration of Africa is not favorable to the development of commerce. Few rivers are navigable from the coast, and even those which are, are only so during part of the year. There are not many good barbors; the climate along the coast is initical to European constitutions, and moreover, the continent is split up into innumerable independent communities, almost constantly at war with each other, and offering little security to the acquisition of property or encouragement to enterprise.
We need not, therefore, be surprised to find that the whole commerce of that vast continent does not exceed in amount that carried on by Hamburg alone. In the following table we have attempted to give a statement of this commerce, as far as the custom-house returns of the various seafaring nations enabled us to do this :
* Dr. Krap was told at Kiloa that the lake might bo reached in ten days, thus corroborating the information obtained by Livingstone; for in order to reach its sonthern extremity in that time, a daily journey of some forty miles in a direct line would be required.
and West To Africa." Islands. Natal. Coasts.
Total. United Kingdom...... £2,500,000 £1,600,000 £1,463,000 £1,900,000 £7,463,000 France. 2,742,000 1,300,000
900,000 4,942,000 Spain, Portugal, and Mediterra'n countries 1,600,000 45,000
66,000 1,701,000 Remainder of Europe... 43,000 92,000 149,000 161,000 445,000 America...
10,000 52,000 185,000 305,000 552,000 Briush India..
156,000 61,000 225,000 432,000 Remainder of Asia...
100,000 6,000 300,000 406,000 Australasia (British) ..
612,000 Total... .... 6,895,000 3,845,000 1,866,000 3,847,000 16,453,000
8,559,000 3,364,000 2,691,000 2,954,000 17,468,000 Assuming the population of Africa to be 150,000,000, the exports would average 2s. per head; in Great Britain they amount to 80s., in the United States to 42s., in France to 45s., and in Russia to 7s. But even this amount of 2s., small though it be, would give an exaggerated idea of the proportionate exports of Africa. For northern Africa the exports amount to 7s. per head of the population, for the African Islands to 96s., for Cape Colony and Natal to 75s., but for the whole west and east coast, including Madagascar, to 9d. only.
The materials at our disposition have not enabled us to separate the commerce of the west coast from that of the east; one-third, perhaps, of the total may appertain to the latter. At all events, the direct exports to Europe are trifling; France and the Hanse Towns take the largest share; the Americans carry on a considerable trade, and Great Britain indirectly takes part in the commercial movement through British India. The east coast of Africa in many respects is preferable to the west coast; the climate is superior, and fevers scarcely ever prove fatal; there are many good harbors, and a great part of the coast is in the hands of regular governments. The chier drawback, however, is to be looked for in the greater distance from Europe; for, while a sailing vessel may reach the coast of Guinea in fifty days from Liverpool, it takes ninety days to get to Zanzibar. Nor would the opening of the Suez Canal, supposing that scheme capable of being carried out, materially shorten the passage to Zanzibar as regards sailing vessels. The following table shows the average passage in days from Southampton, by way of the Isthmus of Suez, and round the Cape of Good Hope :
* Transit ria Suez (chiefly specie) not included. The French exports to Northern Africa include £4,620,000 to Algeria
-Round the Cape.-
-By way of Suez.
Distance Average passage.
in Screw Sailing vessels. Southampton. miles. steamer. Out.
Home. miles. steamer. Out Home. Aden..
4,100 19 *57 *67 Bombay.... 10,300 *56 107 176
*76 *85 Calcutta.... 11,200 *60 110 (83 112182 7,600 36 *93 *103 Hong Kong 12,800 *68 194[114
9,300 42 *124*122 Melbourne...
59 82 (61 831611 11,000 53 *112 *114 Mauritius ..
*48 79 601 88[61 6,700 30 *80 *90 Natal.. 6,700 89 63 148 7246 8,000 *36
*92 *109 Zanzibar.... 8,600 *48 81 (66) 90
*74 *84 The above table has been compiled chiefly from the “passage table” in the “ Meteorological Papers,” published by authority of the Board of Trade, No. 2, 1858. The average passage to Alexandria, 2,960 miles, takes 35 days; the quickest has been made in 23 days; the passage bome requires on an average 45 days, or at the least 31 days. We have alloved one day for steamers, and two days for sailing vessels, to reach Suez from Alexandria. The navigation of the Red Sea being rather difficult for sailing vessels, we have assumed the voyage from Suez to Aden, 1,300 miles, to occupy 20 days, but believe this to be rather below what would be required ordinarily. The passage from Kossier to Jedda, for instance, requires from 10 to 20 days, and considerably more in Arab boats. Beyond Aden we assumed 90 to 100 miles as the daily progress of a sailing vessel, an estimate entirely in favor of the Suez route. With regard to steam vessels, the saving in point of time is very considerable; but on account of their small stowage room, and the expense of fuel, their use is restricted to the carrying of mails, of passengers, specie, and of few articles of merchandise of small bulk, and for that purpose the railway between Suez and Alexandria suffices. In the trade with Aden, Bombay, and Calcutta, sailing vessels by the canal in nubibus would have an advantage of 40, 20, or 12 days respectively; but, we doubt whether this would enable them to pay the proposed passage dues, of 10 francs per ton. Hong Kong, (and the whole of Eastern Asia,) Mauritius, and Zanzibar would not gain in point of time; Melbourne and Natal would actually lose.
Mr. MacLeod, late H. B. M. Consul at Mozambique, proposes the establishment of a line of steamers in connection with Aden, and touching at the principal places along the east coast, down to Natal. The time required to reach Natal, either by way of Suez or the Cape, being nearly alike, (::6 and 39 days respectively,) the present line to the Cape, extend. ed to Natal, might be profitably maintained. Simultaneously, consular officers would have to be appointed to the principal ports. The facilities for postal intercourse with Europe, thus offered to merchants settled at Zanzibar and elsewhere, could not fail to be highly conducive to the growth of legitimate commerce, and the slave trade, which is still being carried on actively, might thus be gradually and effectually checked.
Our space will not permit us to enter into details regarding imports and exports, and we refer regarding these to the work of M. Guillain, and to Mr. MacLeod's “Travels in Eastern Africa." The latter gentleman most kindly volunteers to supply merchants with any particulars they may require regarding suitable cargoes, etc.
* Based partly on estimates. The figures in brackets ( ) indicate the quickest passago on record.
POLITICAL EVENTS IN ABESSINIA AND MADAGASCAB.
Eastern Africa, unlike the west coast, is for the greater part occupied or claimed by foreign powers, and the native States, excepting Abessinia and Madagascar, are of little or no importance. The Turks occupy several places on the Red Sea, the principal of which is Massowa, and appoint the governor of Zeila. The dominions of the Imam of Zanzibar include the whole of the coast and neighboring islands, from about 5° N. latitude to beyond Cape Delgado; many parts of the coast are, however, virtually independent. The Portuguese claim extends from Cape Delgado to Delgado Bay; but they occupy in reality only the country along the lower Zambezi, and some isolated towns along the coast. Great Britain possesses Perim, a small island at the entrance of the Red Sea; the island Musha, opposite Tajurra, the natural outlet for the commerce of Shoa and Southern Abessinia; the island of Socotra, not at present occupied; the southern half of Delgado Bay, and the Bay of Santa Lucia, on the coast of Kaffraria; and lastly, Natal, a country destined, from its favorable position and climate, to eclipse Cape Colony as an agricultural settlement. The French have lately acquired the port of Zula, south of Massowa; they also claim the whole of Madagascar, but at present hold but a few insignificant islands on its shore, and Mayotte, one of the Comoros.
Of Massowa, Abessinia, and Madagascar we shall speak more in detail under separate headings; but, before doing so, we would refer in a few words to the political bearing of the Suez Canal scheme. Engineers of eminence and respectability* have pronounced against the practicability of such a canal. "Nevertheless, the enterprise is being persevered in under the auspices of the French government, or rather, the isthmus bas been occupied within the last few weeks by a party of armed ouvriers. It is the avowed design of France to found in the Eastern Sea an empire to rival, if not to eclipse, British India, of which empire Madagascar is to be the center. Across the Isthmus of Suez leads the shortest route from Southern France to Madagascar (and India;) its possession by a power desirous to extend ber dominions in that quarter, and capable of availing herself of its advantages, would therefore be of the utmost consequence. The mere fact of the isthmus being part of the Turkish empire, or of Egypt, would not deter France from occupying it; for scruples of conscience are not allowed by that nation to interfere with political "ideas." Zula has been chosen as the second station on the route to Madagascar, and while the occupation of Suez may at will furnish a pretext for seizing upon Egypt, that of Zula may open Abessinia to French conquest. Fortunately there is a power which can put a veto upon those plans of aggrandizement in northeastern Africa, and that power is Great Britain. Gibraltar, Malta, Perim,* and Aden, form a magnificent line of military and naval stations on the route to India, and perfectly command it. 'Only after having converted the last three into French strong
We say "respectability" advisedly. No doubt many supporters of the scheme are sincere in believing it feasible. Such, however, can scarcely be the opinion of its actual promoters, other. wise they would have been more conscientious with regard to statements made, or facts omitted.
* Perim at present is destined merely to bear a lighthouse. Properly fortified, it would command the entrance to the Red Sea eren more effectually than Gibraltar does that to the Mediterranean, VOL. XLIII.-NO. II.