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THE “ PLEIAD” EXPLORING VESSEL, BUILT BY MESSRS. LAIRD.

OF AN

EXPLORING VOYAGE

• UP THE RIVERS KWOʻRA AND BI’NUE

(COMMONLY KNOWN AS THE NIGER AND TSÁDDA)

IN 1854.

WITH A MAP AND APPENDICES.

PUBLISHED WITH THE SANCTION OF HER MAJESTY'S

GOVERNMENT.

BY

WILLIAM BALFOUR BAIKIE,
M.D.R.N., F.R.G.S., F.S.A. SCOT., ETC. IN COMMAND OF THE EXPEDITION.

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LONDON:
JOHN MURRAY, ALBEMARLE STREET.

* 1856.

1. 203. a. 12.

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PREFACE.

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The following “ Narrative,” which has been considerably delayed by various unlooked for interruptions, and which has been compiled during leisure intervals snatched from professional and other pursuits, is simply a record of the observations and results of the exploring expedition up the rivers Kwóra and Bínue in 1854. In addition to what came actually under our notice, I have endeavoured to record any interesting or useful information obtained regarding the little known regions of Central Africa. In an Appendix will be found various tables, lists, and documents, not of general interest, and therefore excluded from the body of the work, but at hand to be referred to by those concerned in such topics. I have been careful to note any traditions regarding the early history of the different tribes, as though at present they are of comparatively

little value, the time will come when these apparently trifling stories will be sought after with as much avidity, as the historical antiquary of our own country eagerly culls any legends or tales relating to those ages when our Teutonic or Keltic progenitors, barbarous and unlettered, were not a whit more advanced than many of the Ethiopian races of the present day.

All native proper names throughout the volume have been written in conformity with the alphabet printed in the Appendix, every letter being sounded, and the vowels having the powers given to them in Italian. To prevent confusion the only mark employed has been simply one over the accented syllable.

In computing distances two very different reckonings are employed. One is the long day's journey, from sunrise to sunset, or from fifteen to twenty-five miles, twenty being an average, equal to about fifteen or sixteen miles made good on horizontal space. The other is the short day's journey, from sunrise to about noon, or from eight to twelve or fourteen miles, ten being perhaps the nearest average, which may represent eight miles of actual progress.

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