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to the right and left are others more or less dilapidated, and the east point of the town is occupied by a small customhouse painfully whitewashed. The wind-blackened sun-burnt huts stand far beyond the enceinte, and outside this suburb, the country-it served for skirmishing-ground during the wars-is a bushy plantation of coco and fruit trees. On the mainland, separated by a pure blue channel, verdure and orchards face the town. Mombas is, as far as Nature made her, pleasing and picturesque.
The climate of this islet is hotter and healthier than Zanzibar. The people suffer a little from the fever, which renders it so dangerous for us. The endemic complaint is an ulcer upon the legs, and parts most distant from the seat of circulation. As in Yemen and in the Hejaz, here the least scratch becomes an ugly wound. The cause may be sought in that cachectic and scorbutic habit induced by the want of vegetables, and by brackish water. The pure element is indeed to be found in the old wells beyond the town, and on the mainland; the citizens, however, to save trouble, prefer the nearer pits, where water penetrates through briny coralline.
The population, including a Beloch garrison rated at 300 men, may amount to 8000 souls; of these there are 25 or 30 Indian Moslems, and nearly 50 Bhattias. We found unexpectedly-the Mombas mission was well received-by no means friendly inclinations. Small communities are rarely remarkable for amiability or morality. These people are taxed by other Arabs with overweening pride, insolence of manner, bigotry and evilspeaking, turbulence and treachery. Their habits of pilfering are inveterate; few travellers have failed to miss some valuable. All seemed to regard us as rivals and enemies. They devoted energy to the task of spoiling us, and, that failing, they tried insolence. I was obliged on one occasion to administer, sword in hand, the descent down-stairs. The terrors of the interior and the expense of travelling were studiously exaggerated. Tangai the Jemadar, a quaint old Mekrani, who, unable to read or write, was renowned for
"akl"-intellect, synonymous with knavery-did nothing but beg our guns and revolvers. His son would have been contented with a little cloth, powder, and a gold chronometer. "Yabir," a chief so powerful, that men spoke his name in an undertone, almost merited, and narrowly escaped, being led out of the room by his ears. The very Hindus required a lesson in civility. With the Wali or Governor, Khalfan bin Ali, an Omani Arab of noble family, we were on the best of terms. But the manifest animus of the public made us feel light-hearted, when, our inquiries concluded, we bade adieu to Mombas.
Leaving orders with Lakhmidan, the Banyan collector of customs, to land and lodge our cockroach-gnawed luggage, and directing Said bin Salim, supported by our two Portuguese servants and his three slaves, to protect it, Captain S—— and I set out on the morning after our arrival to visit the Rev. Mr Rebmann of the Mombas mission at Kisulodiny, his station. Before the sun had power to destroy the dewy freshness of dawn, we slowly punted up the riverlike creek bounding the islet eastward, and in our heavy "dow"-here all small craft are so called-manned by two men and a boy, we justified stern Omar's base comparison for those who tempt the sea, worms floating upon a log." Whilst rounding the islet, our attention was attracted by groups of marketpeople, who called to be ferried across. The acknowledgment on our crew's part was an African modification of Marlow Bridge and its infamous pie. Sundry small settlements, bosomed in trees and bush mixed with brabs, cocos, and the W-shaped toddy, appeared upon each "adverse strand." After a two miles' progress, lame as the march of African civilisation, appeared Port Tudor, a saltwater lagoon north of and behind Mombas. Its broad surface, broken only by the Rock of Rats, and hedged on both sides by the water-loving mangrove, prolongs itself in two riverlike arms towards the interior, till stopped by high ground. Such in nature is the original of the "Tuaca, or Nash," with which our mappers
enliven dull tracts of desert. Here, like the "Great Quiloa River," a salt-water inlet, receiving in the dry season a slender runnel, and during rain the surface-drainage of a seaward slope, becomes a noble black streak, dispensing the blessings of commerce and civilisation throughout three inches of white paper.
As we advanced up the "Water of Rabai," the sea-arms shrank and the scenery brightened. A broken blue line of well-wooded hills-the Rabai Range-formed the background. On the nearer slopes westward were the beginnings of plantations; knots of peasants' huts hove successively in sight, and pale smoke, showing that the land is being prepared for approaching showers, curled high from field and fell. Above was the normal mottled sky of the rainy zone, fleecy mists, opal-tinted, floating upon azure depths; and from the western horizon a purple nimbus moved majestically against the wind. Below, the water caught various and varying reflections of the firmament; in places it was smooth as glass, and sometimes dimpled by the zephyrs that found a way through the hillgaps, and merrily danced over the glistening floor. Here little fishes, pursued by some tyrant of the waters, played duck-and-drake upon the surface; there larger kinds, skate-shaped, sprang nineteen or twenty feet into the air, glittering like plates of silver in the sun. On both sides the view was bounded by veritable forests of the sea. The white and the red mangrove on firmer ground rose unsupported; on the water's edge they were propped like miniature banyantrees by succulent offsets of luscious purple and emerald green, so intricate that the eye would vainly unravel the web of root and trunk, of branch and shoot. The parasitical oyster clustered to the portions denuded by the receding tide, whilst the brown newt and the rainbow crab with single claw plunged into their little hiding-holes, or ran amongst the harrow-work of roots and upshoots binding the black mass of ooze. These "green and superb,
though unfruitful trees," of the old Portuguese navigator, supply the well-known Zanzibar rafters. Various lichens, especially the orchilla, grow upon the fork. Here and there towered a nodding coco, a silk-cotton tree, or the " Phun," with noble shaft and canopied head of green, glinted through by golden beams. White and brown fish-hawks soared high in ether; lower down, bright fly-catchers hunted in concert the yellow butterflies rashly travelling from bank to bank; doves cooed in the thicker foliage; snowy paddy-birds perched upon the topmost tree-boughs, and over the shoal-water lining the sides; the small grey kingfisher poised himself with twinkling wings; while sober-coated curlews and sand-pipers took little runs, and stopped to peck into the dark vegetable mud.
After ten miles of alternate rowing, sailing, and pulling through pelting rain and potent sun, we reached about mid-day the landing-place, a tree projecting from the right bank over the mud graves of many defunct mangroves. Our boat, stripped of sail, oars, and rudder, to secure her presence next morning, was made fast to a stump, and we proceeded to breast the hills. A footpath led us over rolling ground sliced by the heavy rains, thickly grown with tall coarse grass, sun-scorched to a sickly tawny brown, and thinly sprinkled with thorny acacias. After a mile we began the ascent of the Rabai Range. Rising behind the coralline of the coast, this ridge of yellow or rufous sandstone and red ochreish clay, varying in height from 700 to 1200 feet, fringes the line from Melinde to the Pangany river. The hills rise abruptly seaward, and fall inland with a somewhat gentler slope, thus forming a mere ridge, not, as such maritime ranges usually are, the rampart of an interior plateau. This unusual disposition may have led to the opinion that inland the country falls to or below sea-level.* The chine is broken by deep ravines, which, after rains, pour torrents to the ocean. Despite the blighting saltbreeze, aricas and cocos, mangoes
As instruments were not used by those who formed the opinion, it is still a disputed point.
and custard-apples, the guava and the castor plant, the feathery cassava and the broad-leaved papaw and plantain, flourish upon its flanks; and in the patches of black forests spared by the wild woodman, the copal and the Invule, a majestic timber-tree, still linger. The ascent of the hills was short but sharp, and the way, checkered with boulders, wound at times under clumps of palms and grateful shade. On the summit appeared the straggling huts of the savages, pent-housed sheds of dried fronds, surrounded by sparse cultivation, lean cattle, and vegetation drooping for want of rain. Amid cries of "Yambo?" especially from that part of the sable community termed by prescriptive right the fair, and the screams of children, we pursued our road over seaward ridge and dell at the end of a five-mile walk we entered the mission-house, introduced ourselves to the inmates, and received the most hospitable welcome. The Kisulodiny mission house struck us as a miracle of industry in these lands. Begun in 1850 by Messrs Rebmann and Erhardt, it was finished after about two years. The form is in three sides of a hollow square, completed with a railing to keep poultry from vagrancy, and a flat roof is ascended by an external ladder the material is sandstone plastered with clay and whitewashed; mangrove rafters form the ceiling, and Invule-planks the doors and shutters. It has its inconveniences, being distant from that source of all comfort, the well, and beplagued with ants. The little red wretches are ubiquitous by day, overrunning the clothes, nestling in the hair, and exploring nose and ears, and, never resting by night, compel the inmates to sleep with pans full of water supporting the bed-legs. We enjoyed
the cool refreshing evening, which, unlike Zanzibar, here follows shower. The servants, most grotesque in garb and form, collected to stare at the new white men ; and those hillsavages who were brave enough to enter a house - your true African has a lively horror of stone wallsstalked about, and stopped occasionally to relieve their minds by begging snuff or cloth. Considering the intense desire of civilisation to know something of man in his state of nature, I proceed, with the aid of Mr Rebmann, who during nine years has made a conscientious study of these races, and who imparted it with the greatest courtesy, to sketch the two typical tribes.
The people of Eastern Intertropical Africa are divided by their occupations into three orders. First is the fierce pastoral nomade, the Galla and Masai, the Somal and the Kafir, who lives upon the produce of his cattle, the chase, and the foray. He is the constant terror of the neighbouring races. Secondly rank the semi-pastoral, as the Wakamba, who, though without fixed abodes, make their women cultivate the ground. They occasionally indulge in raids and feuds. And the last degree of civilisation, agriculture, is peculiar to the Wanika, the Wasumbara, and the various tribes living between the coast and the interior lakes. This third order is peaceful with strangers, but thievish, and fond of intestine strife.
The Wanika * or Desert race is composed of a Negritic base, now intimately mixed with Semitic blood. Of old Mulattoes, the antiquity of these East African families has enabled them to throw off the variety and irregularity of half-castes. Receiving for ages distinct impresses of physical agents, they have settled
* There is no reason to seek this name in the "Toniki Emporion" of the Periplus: here every wilderness is called “Nika." The principiative or prefix M denotes in this group of dialects the individual; its plural Wa, the population; U or N, the country; and Ki the language or other accident. Thus Nika is the wild-land, Mnika the wild-lander, Wanika the wild-land folk, and Kinika the wild-land tongue. To this general rule there are many exceptions. Some races, like the Rabai and Toruma, do not prefix Wa to the name. The people of Chhaga, as I have mentioned, term themselves Wakirima. On the other hand, the Masai collectively should be called Wamasai. In these pages the popular Moslem corruption has been preserved.
VOL. LXXXIII.—NO. DVIIL
down into several and uniform national types. Many considerations argue them rather a degeneracy from civilised man, than a people advancing towards improvement; and linguistic reasons induce belief in the consanguinity of all the African races south of the equator, and an ancient subjection to the great Ethiopian or Kushite empire. The historian of these lands, however, has to grope through the shades of the past, guided only by the power to avail himself of the dimmest present lights.
Physiologically, the Wanika are not an inferior African race. The features are Negritic only from the eyes downwards. Like the Galla and the Somal, the skull is pyramidooval, flattened at the moral region of the phrenologist, and compressed at the sides. The face is somewhat broad and plane, with highly-developed zygomata; the brow is moderately conical, high and broad; the orbits wide and distant; the nose depressed with patulated nostrils; the lips bordés, fleshy and swelling; the jaw prognathous, and the beard scant. The Mnika's hair, which grows long and wiry, is shaved off the forehead from ear to ear, and hangs down in the thinnest of corkscrews, stiffened with fat. His complexion is chocolate - brown, seldom black, unless the mother be a slave from the south. The skin is soft, but the effluvium truly African. His figure is, like his features, Semitic above and Negritic below. The head is well seated upon broad shoulders; the chest is ample; the stomach, except in early boyhood or age, does not protrude, and there is little steatopyga. But the lean calf is placed high, the shank bows forward, and the foot is large, flat, and "larkheeled." The gait-no two natives walk exactly alike-is half-stride, half-lounge; and the favourite standing position is crow - legged. Eyes wild and staring, abrupt gestures, harsh, loud, and barking voices, evi
dence the savage. Nothing is more remarkable in the women than the contrast between face and form. Upon the lower limbs, especially the haunches, of the Medician Venus, a hideous wrinkled face meets the disappointed eye.
The Wanika are a curious study of rudimental mind. In some points a nation of semi-naturals, all with them is confusion. To the incapacity of childhood they unite the hard-headedness of age. With the germs of the ideas that belong to a Bacon or a Shakespeare, they combine incapability of developing them. Their religion is that of" gentily worshipping nothing," yet feeling instinctively something above them-a Fetiss-system of demonolatry, and the ghostfaith common to Africans; in fact, the vain terrors of our childhood rudely systematised. Thus they have neither god nor devil, nor heaven nor hell, nor soul nor idol. lungu," the word applied, like the Kafir Uhlunga, to the Supreme, also denotes any good or evil revenant. They offer sheep, goats, poultry, and palm-wine upon the tombs of their ancestors, but they cannot comprehend a futurity. They fear the Koma or Evestrum : etymologically it means one departed;"-but they say of the dead, Yuzi sira-" he is finished." Thus believing. with our philosophers, the Koma to be a subjective, not an objective existence, ghost craft is still the only article of their idiotic creed. All their diseases arise from possession. They have evil ghosts, and haunters of both faiths
the Mulungu is the Pagan's, the Phaypo is the Moslem's departed spirit. Their rites are intended either to avert evils from themselves, or to cast them upon others, and the primal cause of their sacrifices is the Mganga or medicine-man's self-interest.
When the critical moment has arrived, the ghost is adjured to come forth from the possessed; and he names some article in which, if worn
* The Rev. Mr Schön falls into the common European error of supposing that drops of liquor spilt in honour of the old people, i. e. ancestors, food-offerings at graves, and fires lighted there on cold nights, evidences in the West African belief in futurity. As the act proves, it is a belief in presentity. Savages cannot separate the idea of an immortal soul from an immortal body. Can we wonder, when the wisest of the civilised have not yet agreed upon the subject?
round the neck or limbs, he will reside without annoyance to the wearer. This idea lies at the bottom of many practices. It is the object of the leopard's claw, the strings of white, black, and blue beads worn over the shoulder, and called Mudugu ga mu lungu, (ghost-beads), and the rags taken from the sick man's body, and nailed to what Europeans call the "Devil's tree"-termed technically a kehi, or chair. This article is preferred by the ghost or demon to the patient, and thus, by mutual agree ment, both are happy. Some people, especially women, are haunted by a dozen revenants, each of which has his peculiar charm and name. One of them is ridiculously enough called Barakat-in Arabic, a blessing.
It has not suited the Moslem's purpose to proselytise the Wanika, who doubtless would have adopted the saving faith like their brethren the Somal. As it is, the Toruma clan has been partly converted, and many of the heathen fast like Mohammedans, feeling themselves raised in the scale of creation by doing something. Their ceremonies are the simple contrivances of savage priestcraft. Births are not celebrated, and the new-born infant is strangled if weakly or deformed. Children become the mother's, or rather her brother's porperty, to be disposed of as he pleases. Circumcision, partially practised by the gentile throughout East Africa from Egypt to the Cape, is a semireligious act, performed once every five or six years upon the youths en masse, and accompanied by the usual eating and drinking, drumming and dancing. A man may marry any number of wives; the genial rite-no tie, however, to these fickle souls-is celebrated by jollifications, and broken at leisure. The principal festivities, if they can be so called, are at funerals. The object is, as the people say, Ussa kiwewe, to "break the fear" of death-an event which, savage-like, they regard with inexpressible horror.
For a whole week the relations of the deceased must abstain from business, however urgent, and, under pain of insult and a heavy fine, ruin themselves by killing cattle and broaching palm-wine for the community. At these times also there is a laxity of manners which recalls to mind the abominations of the classical Adonia. The characteristic of their customs is the division of both sexes, with initiatory rites resembling masonic degrees. The orders are three in number*-Nyere, the young; Khambi, the middle-aged; and Mfaya, the old. Each has its different initiation and ceremonies, the principal of which is, that the junior must purchase promotion from the senior order. Once about every twenty years happens the great festival Unyaro, at which the middle-aged degree is conferred upon men from thirty down to years of childhood. The candidates retire to the woods for a fortnight, during the first half claying themselves with white, during the second with red earth. On this occasion a slave is sacrificed, and the ceremony is performed with a number of mysterious rites concerning which I could learn nothing. year the Unyaro was to occur; the arrival of the Masai prevented the rite. When all the Khambi have been raised to the highest order, Mfaya, these, formerly the elders, return literally to a second childhood. They are once more Nyere (old boys), and there is no future promotion for them. After the bloody sacrifice and the coatings of clay, these orders are
mainly distinguished by their religious utensils: for instance, the Miansa, or huge drum, a goat-skin stretched upon a hollowed tree-trunk, six feet long, whose hollow prolonged sounds, heard at night from the depths of distant hills, resemble a melancholy moan, is peculiar to the third degree, or elders. It is brought during dark to the Kaya, that the junior orders may not look upon it. Similarly,
* Traces of this threefold organisation, founded as it is upon nature's laws, may be found in many communities of the negro and negroid race. The Kru republic, for instance, which flourishes in pure democracy close to the Ashanti and Dahomey despotisms, divides its members into three classes-the Kedibo, or juveniles; the Sedibo, or soldiers (adults); and the Guekbade, elders and censors. A fee is also paid for entering the different orders.