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with a description of a new species. 3. The distinguishing characters between the ova of the Sepia and those of the Vermes testacea that live in water explained. 4. A general notice of the animals taken by Mr.John Cranch during the expedition. 5. Observations, systematical and geographical, on Professor Christian Smith's collection of plants from the vicinity of the river Congo, by Mr. Brown. 6. Geological remarks on the specimens of rocks presented to the British Museum. And 7. Hydrographical remarks from the island of St. Thomas to the mouth of the Zaire :--the whole illustrated by a chart of the Zaire as far as it was traced upwards, and thirteen plates, besides a number of wood-cuts interspersed among the letterpress, forming a very handsome, and, we may add, what is no mean recommendation in these days, a very cheap volume.
On the 19th of March, 1716, the expedition cleared the Channel, and on the 2d of April came to anchor in Porta Praya road, which afforded an opportunity to Professor Smith to obtain a more correct account of the botany of St. Jago than has hitherto been given; and his account of the interior of this island, of which we know so little, is interesting and amusing, The
passage from St. Jago to the mouth of the Zaire was exceedingly tedious, owing to their having kept too close to the coast of Africa, instead of stretching away to the westward. It afforded them, however, an opportunity of procuring a great number of new and curious marine animals, and among others of ascertaining the animal that takes possession of the beautiful paper nautilus, or Argonaut shell, on which two papers are given in the Appendix. It was also the means of correcting the erroneous geography of the coast of Southern Africa, from Cape Lopez to Cape Padron, which was found to be laid down in what are esteemed the most correct charts, too far to the westward, in some places, by a full degree of longitude.
On anchoring off Malemba, they were visited by an officer called a Mafook, or king's merchant; she was announced by a person who said he was a gentleman, and that his name was Tom Liverpool. They were asked if they wanted slaves; and on being answered in the negative, and that none but the Portugueze were now allowed to carry on that traffic, the mafook poured forth a volley of abuse on all the sovereigns of Europe, and more especially on the king of England,-said he was overrun with captives, which he would sell at half their value; and added that, with one exception, it was five years since a single vessel had visited Malemba; admitting, however, that now and then he had a demand from Cabenda, where, at that moment, he said, there were nine vessels under Portugueze, and one under Spanish colours.
It was several days before the vessels succeeded in forcing their passage into the Zaire, on account of the strength of the current; but no sooner were they anchored within the river, than they were assailed by numerous visitors, of which those from the province of Sonio, on the south bank, who were · Christians after the Portugueze fashion,' are represented as by far the worst people they had met with, being, almost without exception, sulky looking vagabonds, dirty, swarming with lice, and scaled over with the itch, all strong symptoms of their having been civilized by the Portugueze.' One of them was a priest, who had been ordained by the Capuchin monks of Loando: he could just write his name and that of St. Antonio, and read the Romish ritual; he was however but an indifferent Catholic, for his rosary, his relics, and his crosses were mixed with his domestic fetiches: “this bare-footed apostle,' as Dr. Smith calls him, boasted of having no fewer than five wives.
The difficulty of getting the transport up the river induced Captain Tuckey to put together his double boats, with which and the Congo he proceeded upwards on the 18th of July, and on the 26th reached Lombee, the market-town of the Chenoo or king of Embomma. Here Simmons, a black man, who had been taken on board the Congo at Deptford, first met with his father and brother, who received him with transports of joy: on going on shore with his friends, the town resounded the whole night with the drum and the songs of rejoicing. The adventures of Simmons afford a presumption that the tale of Oronoco may not be a romance.
The story of this man, which I had before never thought of enquiring into, and which was partly related by his father, adds one blot more to the character of European slave-traders. His father, who is called Mongova Seki, a prince of the blood, and counsellor to the king of Embomma, entrusted him, when eight or ten years old, to a Liverpool captain of the name of
(we wish we knew it) “to be educated i (or, according to his expression, to learn to make book) in England; but
his conscientious guardian found it less troublesome to have him taught to make sugar at St. Kitts, where he accordingly sold him; and from whence he contrived to make his escape and get on board an English ship of war, from which he was paid off on the reduction of the feet. During our passage, he performed, without any signs of impatience or, disgust, the menial office of cook’s-mate.'--p.98, 99.
A ceremonial visit was here paid to the Chenoo of Embomma, who was with difficulty made to comprehend the nature of the voyage. After a tedious conversation, they sat down to an entertainment in a large apartment, where some chests covered with carpets served, at once, for seats and tables. The repast consisted of a soup of plantains and goats' flesh, a fowl cut in pieces and broiled, and roasted plantains in lieu of bread; some sweet palm Y 3
wine, in a large silver tankard, was the only beverage. When dinuer was ended, the king and his chiefs still appeared doubtful as to the real motives of the visit; at length an old man, starting up, plucked a leaf from a tree, and holding it to Captain Tuckey, said,
If you come to trade, swear by your God and break the leaf;' on his refusing to do so, he said, 'Swear by your God you don't come to make war, and break the leaf' this Captain Tuckey immediately did, on which the whole company performed a grand sakilla, a kind of measured dance, expressive of approbation; and the assembly then broke up apparently quite satisfied.
The Chenoo bad about fifty women for his own use; these, as well as his daughters, he offered, with equal liberality, to the visitors; and the example was not lost upon his courtiers. The language of the men,’ Captain Tuckey says, ' in offering them was most disgusting and obscene; being composed of the vilest words picked up from English, French and Portugueze. As no such offers were nade farther up the river, it is but fair to presume that they were trained to this offensive custom by the European slave-dealers, who used to frequent Embomma as the principal mart on the Zaire. In returning to the ships, the party observed a hut in which the corpse of a female was lying drest as when alive: within were four women howling, to whom two men on the outside responded in a kind of cadence, producing a concert not unlike the yell of an Irish funeral. In passing through the burying-ground, they observed two graves, not less than nine feet by five; for the extraordinary size of which the following passage enables us to account.
* Simmons requested a piece of cloth to envelope his aunt, who had · been dead seven years, and was to be buried in two months, being now arrived at a size to make a genteel funeral. The manner of preserving corpses, for so long a time, is by enveloping them in cloth inoney of the country, or in European cottons, the smell of putrefaction being only kept in by the quantity of wrappers, which are successively multiplied as they can be procured by the relations of the deceased, or according to the rank of the person; in the case of a rich and very great man, the bulk acquired being only limited by the power of conveyance to the grave; so that the first hut in which the body is deposited, becoming too small, a second, a third, even to a sixth, increasing in dimensions, is placed over it.'—pp. 115, 116.
On the 5th of August, the party proceeded up the river in the double boats; but on the 9th they found the Slate Mountains on either side had contracted it within such narrow banks, and the velocity of the current in consequence was so strong, and so many whirlpools and eddies were occasioned by ledges of rocks, that Captain Tuckey determined at once to quit them and proceed by land to the first cataract, called in the language of the country Yellala. They found nothing, on their arrival, to justify the tremendous account given of it by the natives:-compared with Niagara, (Captain Tuckey says,) it might be considered as a brook bubbling over its stony bed. It was observed, however, and with some surprize, that the quantity of water which flowed over it was by no means equal to the volume of the river below: yet it had been ascertained that not a stream fell into the river between Yellala and the sea; and the only explanation of the phenomeuon that occurred to them was that of a subterranean communication between the
and the lower part of the cataract under the ridges of slate, which is not at all improbable.
This journey to the cataracts and a further one over the hills, in both of which they suffered great fatigue and privations, seems to have laid the foundation of that disease which proved fatal to so many of the party. Mr. Tudor, the anatomist, was the first who fell ill; and by the 17th of August, more than half the number were similarly circumstanced. Provisions of all kinds were now very scarce, and all they could procure were a few fowls and eggs, with a little cassada root, green plantains and beans; the towns or villages were thinly scattered and the population very scanty. The natives offered no resistance to their further progress; but their aid was dearly purchased and reluctantly afforded.
On the 22d of August, Captain Tuckey found himself very ill, but was determined to proceed; on the same day he was deserted by Simmons, the interpreter, but he luckily had with him another whom he had brought from Embomma. Though the party continued to droop, and to fall behind one after the other, Captain Tuckey and Professor Smith still resolved to push on, especially as above a town called Inga, the residence of a Chenoo, the river again was found to become navigable, and to stretch out into a magnificent sheet of water. The sight of this fine stream, and the improved appearance of the country, gave them new spirits; they hired canoes, and partly by river navigation, and partly by land marches, continued their progress upwards till the 9th of September, when the bearers of their baggage positively refused to go
"Finding all persuasions useless, (Captain Tuckey says,) I was obliged to pitch the tent at this place, and with Dr. Smith and Lieutenant Hawkey walked to the summit of a hill, where we perceived the river winding again to the S. E. but our view did not extend above three miles of the reach : the water clear of rocks, and, according to the information of all the people, there is no impediment whatever, as far as they know, above this place. ' And here we were under the necessity of turning our back on the
river, which we did with great regret, but with the consciousness of bar. ing done all that we possibly could!--pp. 216, 217,
The few who had proceeded thus far were in a miserable condition; the only two who retained their health being Doctor Smith and Mr. Lockbart, the gardener, the former of whom had become so much enraptured with the improved appearance of the country and the magnificence of the river, that it was with the utmost difficulty he could be prevailed on to return, ---four days after this he was attacked with fever, and expired the day after he had reached the ship. Professor Smith's journal will be found an interesting document to all who delight in a simple and unaffected narration of transactions and occurrences, mixed with lively descriptions of the country and its most prominent objects; and a faithful record of the impressions and reflexions noted down on the spot and at the moment they were made, without regard to arrangement or juxtaposition of kindred subjects. In this respect, his journal forms a close resemblance to that of Professor Thunberg.
We have slightly passed over the journey up the river, in order that we might have room for a summary of the information obtained by this expedition, and which the editor has skilfully condensed in his · Concise View.'
In the first place, we are told, that the name of the river is neither the Congo, the Zaire, nor the Barbela, but Moienzi Enząddi, the great river, or the river which absorbs all other rivers ;' that in some respects its magnitude and velocity have been exaggerated, in others underrated; that its current was found to be less strong than usually represented, but its depth at the mouth much greater. In sounding from the ships, no bottom could be found with one hun-, dred and sixty fathoms; and Massey's machine indicated a descent to one hundred and thirteen fathoms, without having touched the ground; the velocity never exceeded five knots an hour, and was seldom so much as four and a half; but the river, it should be observed, was then in its lowest state. The tide too, which it had been said could make no impression on the Zaire, was found to force back the current as far as Sondie, or the commencement of the narrows, about one hundred and forty miles from the mouth, where the rise and fall were from twelve to sixteen inches. These narrows continue nearly forty miles to a town called Inga; the width of the river throughout this distance being generally not more than from three to five hundred yards, most parts of it bristled with rocks; the banks every where precipitous, and composed entirely of masses of slate, which run in ledges from bank to bank, forming those rapids or cataracts, which the natives distinguish by the name of yellala; the lowest. and most formidable of which was a fall of about thirty feet perpen