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conjecture. On the shores of the ocean are the Somaulies, a people who are supposed to possess the lands which in ancient times belonged to the Macrobian Ethiopians mentioned by Herodotus, and celebrated for an unusual length of life. Of these we shall have occasion to take some notice in the sequel ; meantime we proceed to give a tabular view of the Abyssinian provinces, which will serve much better than the most minute description to illustrate the distribution, the extent, and the relative position of the several parts of that great empire.
I. AMHARA. 1. Amhara Proper.
5. Begemder. 2. Dembea.
6. Angote. 3. Damot.
7. Walaka. 4. Gojam.
II. TIGRE. 1. Tigré Proper.
7. Avergalé. 2. Agamé.
III. MIDRE BAHARNAGASH, OR DISTRICT OF THE PRINCE OF THE SEA. 1. Masuah,
6. Amphila. 2. Arkeeko.
7. Madir. 3. Weah.
8. Arena. 4. Zullo.
9. Duroro. 5. Tubbo.
IV. INDEPENDENT STATES IN THE SOUTI. 1. Shoa.
7. Cambat. 2. Efat.
8. Hurrur. 3. Gooderoo.
9. Gidm. 4. Enarea.
10. Adel. 5. Gurague.
11. Bali. 6. Kaffa.
We do not think it expedient to encumber our pages with the more minute geographical distinctions, which are not only expressed in language extremely uncouth, but are moreover applied to districts whose limits are still undetermined. The curious reader will find numerous details in the works of Bruce, Salt, Lord Valentia, Niebuhr, and Malte Brun, darkened however by an unnecessary variation in the nomenclature, and sometimes, we are sorry to add, by the cloud of ignorance and of controversy.
Civil History of Nubia and Abyssinia. Variety of Opinion in regard to Ethiopians-Aboriginal and mixed with
Arabians - Queen of Sheba-Book of Axum- Abyssinians converted to Christianity-Extent of their Dominions-Wars in Arabia-Arrival of Portugiese- History of Nubia -Cambyses-- Macrobians - Table of the Sun - Explanation by lleeren-Prolemy Euergetes-War with Candace--Success of Petronius --Period of Darkness respecting Ethiopia--Prester John - Mission of Covilham-of Matthew-AlvarezCamp of the Abyssinian Monarch --Interview with David III.-Ordi. nation of Clergy-Stephen de Gama-Bermudez the Abuna-Oviedo Peter Paez-Jerome Lobo-Hatred towards Catholics--Poncet-Bruce -State of Abyssinia - Ras Michael-Ozoro Esther-Manuscripts collected by Bruce - History of Abyssinia-Revolt of Judith -- Restoration of the line of Solomon - List of Kings-Galla-War among Chiefs-Bruce goes to the sources of the Nile- Fasil— The Jumper-The Lamb-Kefla Yasong - Mr. Sait-Outline of History-Pearce--His Adventures under Welled Selassé-Death of Ras-Demise of the King-Rise of Subegadis - Invasion of Nubia by Ishmael Pasha-Battles with Sheygyans--Act of Generosity--Cruelty of Egyptian Army -Character of Shevgyans - Expe lition of Ibrahim-Death of Ishmael -Spirit of lusurrection in conquered Provinces.
In regard to all ancient nations which had no immediate intercourse with the Hebrews, the Greeks, or the Romans, the historical notices are extremely obscure or altogether fabulous. On this account we remain in comparative ignorance of every thing which respects the origin of the two interesting countries whose annals we are now about to trace. Ethiopia, it is true, is repeatedly men. tioned in the Sacred Volume; but all the allusions to it are conveyed in language so general, that we not supplied with a satisfactory light relative to the lineage of the people, their first forin of government, their religion, or their laws. Hence there prevails among modern writers a great variety of opinion on all the heads now specified; and more particularly in reference to the extraction and language of the early colonists who occupied the country which stretches from the Red Sea to the Nile,
and from Sennaar to the borders of Egypt. The remarks of Herodotus, the first European historian whose attention was drawn to Nubia, apply to a period which will be deemed comparatively recent, if the date be measured by the antiquity claimed for the surrounding nations ; being confined to the enterprise of Cambyses, who, stimulated by the fame of certain golden mines, wished to carry his arms beyond the sources of the Bahr el Azrek.
It is not our intention to exhaust the patience of the reader on merely hypothetical views respecting the origin of the various tribes which now dwell on the banks of the Upper Nile and the western side of the Red Sea. The more probable opinion, as we have already suggested, is that they are descended from a race of aboriginal Africans, who in the course of time mixed with the primitive inhabitants, and among the Sabæans and Hamyrites, with whom they established an early connexion. This opinion is further confirmed by the fact that, in the history of Arabia Felix, collected from several indigenous, authors by Schultens, the Abyssinians are described as a different people from the natives of the eastern shore of the gulf. It is admitted, that in the intercourse carried on with the opposite coast vast numbers of Arabians must have mingled with the Axumites; but still it appears that in feature, colour, habit, and manners they form a distinct order of men.*
The Abyssinians themselves, although perfectly ignorant of the time and circumstances which marked the settlement of their ancestors on the western shores of the Arabian Gulf, have insisted upon connecting their original faith, their civil polity, as well as the pedigree of their royal house, with the visit of the Queen of Sheba to King Solomon at Jerusalem. The events now alluded to are incorporated in a treatise called the Chronicle of the Kings of Abyssinia ; the author of which says,
* The learned editor of Bruce's Travels founded, on the radical distinction between the languages of Egypt and Arabia, an argument that the former country could not have been peopled from the latter; and, by the same process of reasoning, arrived at the conelusion that the Egyp. tians and Ethiopians were of the same lineage, and probably descended from a Libyan tribe quite unconnected with the oriental Cushites. In the Appendix to the seventh volume, however, of the last edition of that work, Dr. Murray inserted a “Chronological Table of the Kings of Ahys. sinia," in which he remarks, “that the Abyssinians, being undoubtedly a colony of Arabs from Hamyar or Yemeu, can have no just pretensiona to any affinity
with the Jews.” In maintaining the Arabic origin of the Abyssinians, Dr. Murray contradicts the general current of tradition, and is hardly consistent with himself.-see Appendix to volume ii. No. 2, entitled, " Additional Proofs that Egypt was peopled from the South and the Confines of Ethiopia.
“ We write the law and custom of the government of Ibn Hakim (or Menilec), the son of Solomon. With him came the twelve doctors of the law that form the right-hand bench in judgment.” He next mentions the other officers of eminence who came along with this prince; such as “the master of the horse, high chamberlain, and he who carried the Ten Commandments and holy water.". This work, of which the authority does not stand high, is sometimes entitled Kebir Zaneguste, or Glory of the Kings. It is regarded indeed by the natives as a faithful repository of their ancient history ; though the slightest attention to it will convince the reader that it is the production of an ignorant monk, who used the Septuagint translation of the Bible as the groundwork of a ridiculous fable, with the sole view of ministering to the vanity of his countrymen.*
The chronicle begins with a list of the emperors, from Arwe, or the Serpent, to Menilec, some of whom are said to have reigned several centuries. From this son of Solomon downwards the succession has an aspect somewhat more probable, though no dependence can be placed upon its accuracy. Y.M.
Y.M. Menilec reigned.
9 0 Za Hendadyn.
10 Awda .. 11 0 Zah-Dir....
2 0 Za Awsyn. 3 0 Za Awezena ..
1 0 Za Tsawe 3 10 Za Berwas..
290 Zagesyn... half a day Za Mahazi
10 Za Maute 8 4 | Zabaesi Bazen...
16 0 Za Bahse..
9 0 And in the 8th year of his reign Kawude..
2 0 Christ was born, Kanazi..
In a subsequent part of this catalogue is found Zahekale; which is without doubt the name of the sovereign who reigned in Abyssinia at the time when the Periplus of the Erythræan Sea was written. The author of that work, adopting
* Bruce's Travels, vol. iii. p. 1.
the slight_modification required by the Greek language, calls him Zoskales; and, according to the native document just quoted, he is represented as having ruled between the years 76 and 99 of the Christian era. It is, as Mr. Salt remarks, an extraordinary circumstance that this date should agree very nearly with the period to which Dr. Vincent has attributed the appearance of the celebrated treatise by Arrian, namely, to the tenth year of Nero, or A. D. 64, making a difference of not more than twelve years,—a singular coincidence, which necessarily adds a very important confirmation to both accounts.*
In the same list, extracted from the Chronicle, are the names of the princes who swayed the sceptre when the Axumites were converted to the Christian religion. From the narrative of Rufinus and other ecclesiastical writers, it is manifest that the person named Frumentius was the Abba Salama or Fremonatos, as he is elsewhere denominated, who, after having resided some time in Abyssinia, was raised to the rank of a bishop by Athanasius, the patriarch of Alexandria. It subsequently appears, that during the following reign, when the Arians gained the ascendency, the Emperor Constantius sent an embassy through Theophilus an Indian, with a letter addressed to the ruling sovereigns Aizana and Saizana, for the purpose of persuading Frumentius to relinquish the doctrines of his patron, and to adopt those of his successor Georgius. That sach monarchs governed Abyssinia is clearly proved by the inscription which Mr. Salt discovered at Axum ; and though there may be some slight chronological difficulties to overcome, there is little doubt that the names of the two princes who swayed the joint sccptre in the year 356,-the date of the imperial mandate,-have been satisfactorily ascertained.
At this period, the middle of the fourth century, the power of the Abyssinian kings seems to have been fully established, and their conquests to have extended over part of Arabia, and from Zeyla up to the junction of the Tacazze with the Nile. Such at least are the limits of the jurisdietion implied in one of the Adulitic inscriptions, published by the author whose name we have just recited, and which is understood to commemorate the transactions of a native
* Salt's Abyssinia, p. 463.
† Ibid., 464.