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with the reduction. I have not been able to insert the islands, and other remarks which would convey information, as well as the form of the river; but you will see how nearly my sketch from actual observation agrees with our map from native information; and I shall send an unreduced sketch, in order that, if you wish it, a finer pen than mine may reduce it. The watch performs remarkably well, though deranged for some time by an unfortunate knock; I think it will yet do good service. If you know any one at Loanda on the W. coast, send me a thermometer, graduated to show the point of ebullition of water at different heights, but please remember not to lay out much on that which may be lost. I should like to ascertain the watershed of the E. and W. The continent seems to be an elevated table-land, sloping chiefly towards the E.
Sportsmen have still some work before them in the way of discovering all the fauna of Africa. This country abounds in game; and, beyond Barotse, the herds of large animals surpass anything I ever saw. Eilands and buffaloes, their tameness was shocking to me: 81 buffaloes defiled slowly before our fire one evening, and lions were impudent enough to roar at us. On the S. of the Chobe, where bushmen abound, they are very seldom heard: these brave fellows teach them better manners. My boatman informed me that he had seen an animal, with long wide spreading horns like an ox, called liombikalela—perhaps the modern bison ; also another animal, which does not live in the water, but snorts like a hippopotamus, and is like that animal in size—it has a horn, and may be the Asiatic rhinoceros. And we passed some holes of a third, animal, which burrows from the river inland, has short horns, and feeds only by night. I did not notice the burrows at the time of passing, but I give you the report as I got it. Sable antelopes abound, and so does the nahong; and there is a pretty little antelope on the Sesheke', called " teeanyane," which seemed new to me. These animals did not lie in my line, so you must be content with this brief notice.
The birds are in great numbers on the river, and the sand-martins never leave it. We saw them in hundreds in mid-winter, and many beautiful new trees were interesting objects of observation; but 1 had perpetually to regret the absence of our friend Mr. Oswell. I had no one to share the pleasure which new objects impart, and, instead of pleasant conversation in the evenings, I had to endure the everlasting ranting of Makololo.
Believe me yours,
Particulars of the Observations by which the several Longitudes are determined.
Extracts from a Letter addressed by Thomas Maclear, Esq., to
Royal Observatory, Cape of Good Hope,
Mi Dear Sir John,—By this day's mail for England I send to Lieut.-Colonel Steele the observations and the results from them made by Dr. Livingston for the geographical points along his route in 1853. By the last mail I forwarded to the same gentleman a despatch from Livingston, intended for the Royal Geographical Society.
Having reduced the observations, I can vouch for their correctness; they include four occultations.
The remarkable geographical fact is the existence of a very large river, which he navigated in canoes in the company of a horde of natives, from about lat. 18° 20' to lat. 14° 11'.
I give you the latitudes and longitudes of the point* where he observed for both, and the latitudes of all the points where he observed. A tracing of the river will also be ready in time for the post. One, on a large scale, has been sent to Colonel Steele, drawn by Livingston, but it will require a little correction as derived from my calculations.
Another remarkable fact is the detection of a Portuguese slave merchant's stockade. It was said that slave merchants in that quarter, and so far south, ;s new—in other words, the game is wearing out in the northern direction.
Where there is plenty of rank vegetation, heat, and moisture, you may conjecture that there is likely to be plenty of fever, and such is the case. Livingston has had the fever no less than eight times. At a spot a little south of the Chobe river the whole of his party was laid prostrate at one time; this spot he names the Fever Ponds.
At the date of his writing to me (Sept. 29, 1853) he was preparing for a push towards Loanda, on the west coast, thence to return to his late track through Londa, the capital of a powerful state down the Leeba. If spared to accomplish this, he will rip up and expose to the public an interesting section of this terra incognita.
In order to accomplish his task without personal anxiety, he sent his wife and family home to England last year. Such a man deserves every encouragement in the power of his country to grant. He has done that which few other travellers in Africa can boast of; he has fixed his geographical points with very great accuracy j and still he is only a poor missionary.
Yours, my dear Sir John, faithfully, T. M.
Manakalouwe, or Unicorn Pass
Lotlakan<5, where the first palmyra trees occur
(about 25 in number)
Kamakama. Hence the direction of travelling
on the Mag. Med
Fever Ponds. "Here all my people were prostrated with fever."
10 miles south of hill Ngwa
Ngwa Hill. (Occultatkm. observed here.) Hill
300 feet high ..
Kandeley Valley. " A lovely valley," half a mile
north of Hill
Station east of Waggon Station of 1851, but in
the same parallel
Sekeletu's Town. The chief Sekeletu is the son
of the late Sebituane. (Two occultations observed here.) . •
On the banks of the Sanshureh river
Station. At the Island of Mahonta the Chobe
runs in Lat. 17° 58'
Town of Sesheke". "Clouds prevented taking
Sekhosi's Town on the Zambeze, about 25 miles
W. of the town of Sesheke
Cataract of Nambwe
Cataract of Bombwe
Falls of Gonye
Seoori, sa Mei, or " Island of Water"
Litofe, island and town of
Loyela, south end of this island. Town of Ma
Naliele, or Nariele. Chief town of Barotse.
Linangelo, old town of Santuru. Site nearly
Katongo, where the Portuguese slave merchant
built his stockade
Point of junction of the Mariele branch with the
Town of Libonta
Island of Tongane
Confluence or junction of the Loeti with the main
Confluence of the" Leeba or Londa with the main
river Leeambye", the northernmost point reached
up to the despatch of this communication
o i u 22 55 52 22 38 0 22 26 56
21 27 47 20 53 14
19. 52 31
19 15 53 18 38 0
18 27 50
18 27 20
18 20 0
18 17 20 18 4 27
17 58 0
17 31 25
17 29 13 17 17 16 16 56 33 16 38 50 16 0 32 15 55 2
15 27 30
15 24 17
15 18 40
15 16 33
15 15 43 15 6 8 14 59 0 14 38 6 14 20 5
14 19 0 14 10 52 Notes to Dr. Livingston's Astronomical Observations for Geographical Positions. By Th. Maclear, Esq.
Station No. ]. "Manakalouwe, or Unicorn's Pass, or that of Parapora, which means the gurgling of water. The dry cover must have presented a different appearance when it got the latter name from what it does now. I think the term Unicorn (the former) refers to an insect having an erect tail. The station is about 6 miles N. of Bamangwato town, where I could not take observations in consequence of the people suffering from a severe drought. The rain-makers would have blamed me had they seen me directing instruments towards their field of labour."
No. 2. "Lettoche, about 18 miles N. of Manakalouwe Pass."
No. 3. "Kanne Station is about 12 miles N. of Lettoche."
No. 4. "Lotlakan6 Station is where the first Palmyra trees occur. There are about 25 of them, and we always find water near them. We lost a week on the way thither; the oxen ran away, and were five whole days without water. The general direction of the path from Kannd to Nchokotsa was N.N.W., and N.W. from Nchokotsa to Kobe\"
No. 5. Kobd Station, where the observations were interrupted by clouds.
At Maila or Mayeelah, on the path between Kobe' and Kamakama, there is a fine watering-place. Some observations were made here, but none for latitude were forwarded.—T. M.
No. 6. "Kamakama Station is important, inasmuch as there the course is altered, and thence we travel on the magnetic meridian."
No. 7. The Fever Ponds Station. "Here all my people were prostrated with fever."
Dr. Livingston's observations at this station bear evidence of the distressing and harassing circumstances in which he was placed. They are sufficient, however, to fix the position within the necessary limits of accuracy. —T. M.
No. 8 Station, 10 miles S. of hill Ngwa. "We now come to observations concerning whicli I feel greater interest, inasmuch as if I am right in my working (calculations), the whole of our last year's map will require a pretty considerable hitch to the W. Instead of 26° E., our waggon-stand was scarcely 24° E.; but I will give you a fair opportunity of judging. On the 14th of April, 1853, we were in sight of a hill, bearing nearly N. It is called by the Bushmen Ngwa, the name of a caterpillar, the entrails of which produce nearly the same effects as the virus received in dissection wounds. They arm their arrows with the poison. The hill is called Dowgha by the Bechuanas. As it is a singular feature in that flat country, I felt anxious to ascertain its longitude. It is about 300 feet high, formed of calcareous tufa hardened, and has no tsetze (the poisonous fly). Two small hills appear to the S.W. of it, and distant about 10 miles; these have no tsetze. Our path to our waggonstand of last year lies so far W. of these hills that we did not see them. I am quite certain our waggon stand is at least a degree W. of Ngwa."
Livingston is correct. The cause of the discrepancy is stated at the end of these notes.—T. M.
No. 9. Hill Ngwa Station. Here he was so fortunate as to observe the occultation of 52 Geminorum (B. A. C, No. 2634) by the moon, wherefrom the position in longitude is deduced with great accuracy. He says,—"The Boers deprived me of my celestial map, one, by the way, which had been up the Niger, so I have to point out the particular star by signs (a sketch)." The Boers burned almost the whole of his property.—T. M.
No. 10 Station. "A most lovely valley, about half a mile N. of Ngwa or Dowgha, and called Kandeley."
No. 11. A station parallel to the waggon-stand of 1851-2, before mentioned. observations at several places which he has not forwarded, thinking he had sent sufficient. Thus at Sekeletu he made seven separate sets, and at Sekhosi “ others." These might alter the lunar distance results to a certain extent, but no practical advantage, except at Sekhosi, would be derived from them.
It will be perceived that the observations made on the present journey alter the longitude of the waggon-stand near Sekeletu, determined in the last, by a large amount, viz., from 26° E. of Greenwich to 23° 50', the true position in longitude being 2° 10' more westerly than was supposed. This correction will apply generally to all the positions S. of Sekeletu, including, it is presumed, even Lake Ngami.
In explanation : Dr. Livingston's sextant was injured by a fall on his journey in 1851, which broke one of the three attaching screws of the great mirror, and the mirror became loose, taking a position with respect to the plane of the instrument, according to the way in which the instrument was held. Upon examination of the observations, those only were adopted that appeared to be most accordant. Those rejected gave a less longitude.-T. M.
XX.-- Report on the Russian Caravan Trade with China.
By HARRY PARKES, Esq., F.R.G.S.
Read March 13, 1854. Canton, from its position in the extreme south of the empire, can only be slightly influenced by a trade which is conducted on the Siberian frontier. None of the exports are drawn from this neighbourhood ; and the few Russian goods that find their way here are seldom recognised as such by the consumers, but are vaguely spoken of by them as the productions of " the North."
It were superfluous to enter into any description of the towns of Kiakhta and Mae-mae-chin, which, being situated on their respective frontiers, and separated only by a barrier, form, as is well known, the seat of this commerce. The advantages of the position (lat. 50° 21' N., and long. 106° 28' E.) are more equalised than might appear from a first glance, which shows the former to be distant about 4000 miles from Moscow, and the latter not more than 1000 from Peking. But the longer journey can be performed, however slowly, by means of good water transportation ; whilst the shorter one lies through dismal desert land, where fodder for the beasts of burden is sometimes unprocurable.
The inhabitants of either' town are permitted free access to each other throughout the day, but a total separation during the hours of night is rigorously enforced. Those in Mae-mae-chin consist solely of parties engaged in the traffic, numbering altogether, it is said, about 1500 persons, and being under the superintendence of Manchu officers appointed from Peking. They belong chiefly to the northern provinces of Chile and Shense, and appear to continue in the trade for a series of years, going and returning with their goods, and never being allowed to take with them their wives or families. Many, or most of them, speak Russian, transformed, however, into a peculiar patois by the novelties of pronunciation which they have allowed themselves to introduce; and this jargon, strange as it may sound, appears to be extensively adopted by both parties in their ordinary oral communications.
Not only is the trade essentially one of barter, but the use of money is strictly interdicted. The value of all the commodities is fixed by Commissioners, appointed on either side, who are presided over by their respective authorities. These parties meet, and draw up regulations determining the price of every article of import, and of the tea to be given in exchange for it;