AFRICA, the name of a continent representing the largest of the three great southward projections from the main mass of the earth’s surface. It includes within its remarkably regular outline an area, according to the most recent computations, of 11,262,000 sq. m., excluding the islands. Separated from Europe by the Mediterranean Sea, it is joined to Asia at its N.E. extremity by the Isthmus of Suez, 80 m. wide. From the most northerly point, Ras ben Sakka, a little west of Cape Blanc, in 37° 21′, N., to the most southerly point, Cape Agulhas, 34° 51′ 15″ S., is a distance approximately of 5000 m.; from Cape Verde, 17° 33′ 22″ W., the westernmost point, to Ras Hafun, 51° 27′ 52″ E., the most easterly projection, is a distance (also approximately) of 4600 m. The length of coast-line is 16,100 m. and the absence of deep indentations of the shore is shown by the fact that Europe, which covers only 3,760,000 sq. m., has a coast-line of 19,800 m.
I. Physical Geography
The main structural lines of the continent show both the east-to-west direction characteristic, at least in the eastern hemisphere, of the more northern parts of the world, and the north-to-south direction seen in the southern peninsulas. Africa is thus composed of two segments at right angles, the northern running from east to west, the southern from north to south, the subordinate lines corresponding in the main to these two directions. `
Main Orographical Features.—The mean elevation of the continent approximates closely to 2000 ft., which is roughly the elevation of both North and South America, but is considerably less than that of Asia (3117 ft.). In contrast with the other continents it is marked by the comparatively small area both of very high and of very low ground, lands under 600 ft. occupying an unusually small part of the surface; while not only are the highest elevations inferior to those of Asia and South America, but the area of land over 10,000 ft. is also quite insignificant, being represented almost entirely by individual peaks and mountain ranges. Moderately elevated tablelands are thus the characteristic feature of the continent, though the surface of these is broken by higher peaks and ridges. (So prevalent are these isolated peaks and ridges that a special term [Inselberglandschaft] has been adopted in Germany to describe this kind of country, which is thought to be in great part the result of wind action.) As a general rule, the higher tablelands lie to the east and south, while a progressive diminution in altitude towards the west and north is observable. Apart from the lowlands and the Atlas range, the continent may be divided into two regions of higher and lower plateaus, the dividing line (somewhat concave to the north-west) running from the middle of the Red Sea to about 6° S. on the west coast. We thus obtain the following four main divisions of the continent:—(1) The coast plains often fringed seawards by mangrove swamps never stretching far from the coast, except on the lower courses of streams. Recent alluvial flats are found chiefly in the delta of the more important rivers. Elsewhere the coast lowlands merely form the lowest steps of the system of terraces which constitutes the ascent to the inner plateaus. (2) The Atlas range, which, orographically, is distinct from the rest of the continent, being unconnected with any other area of high ground, and separated from the rest of the continent on the south by a depressed and desert area (the Sahara), in places below sea-level. (3) The high southern and eastern plateaus, rarely falling below 2000 ft., and having a mean elevation of about 3500 ft. (4) The north and west African plains, bordered and traversed by bands of higher ground, but generally below 2000 ft. This division includes the great desert of the Sahara.
The third and fourth divisions may be again subdivided. Thus the high plateaus include:—(a) The South African plateau as far as about 12° S., bounded east, west and south by bands of high ground which fall steeply to the coasts. On this account South Africa has a general resemblance to an inverted saucer. Due south the plateau rim is formed by three parallel steps with level ground between them. The largest of these level areas, the Great Karroo, is a dry, barren region, and a large tract of the plateau proper is of a still more arid character and is known as the Kalahari Desert. The South African plateau is connected towards the north-east with (b) the East African plateau, with probably a slightly greater average elevation, and marked by some distinct features. It is formed by a widening out of the eastern axis of high ground, which becomes subdivided into a number of zones running north and south and consisting in turn of ranges, tablelands and depressions. The most striking feature is the existence of two great lines of depression, due largely to the subsidence of whole segments of the earth’s crust, the lowest parts of which are occupied by vast lakes Towards the south the two lines converge and give place to one great valley (occupied by Lake Nyasa), the southern part of which is less distinctly due to rifting and subsidence than the rest of the system. Farther north the western depression, sometimes known as the Central African trough or Albertine rift-valley, is occupied for more than half its length by water, forming the four lakes of Tanganyika, Kivu, Albert Edward and Albert, the first-named over 400 m. long and the longest freshwater lake in the world. Associated with these great valleys are a number of volcanic peaks, the greatest of which occur on a meridional line east of the eastern trough. The eastern depression, known as the East African trough or rift-valley, contains much smaller lakes, many of them brackish and without outlet, the only one comparable to those of the western trough being Lake Rudolf or Basso Norok. At no great distance east of this rift-valley are Kilimanjaro—with its two peaks Kibo and Mawenzi, the former 19,321 ft., and the culminating point of the whole continent—and Kenya (17,007 ft.). Hardly less important is the Ruwenzori range (over 16,600 ft.), which lies east of the western trough. Other volcanic peaks rise from the floor of the valleys, some of the Kirunga (Mfumbiro) group, north of Lake Kivu, being still partially active. (c) The third division of the higher region of Africa is formed by the Abyssinian highlands, a rugged mass of mountains forming the largest continuous area of its altitude in the whole continent, little of its surface falling below 5000 ft., while the summits reach heights of 15,000 to 16,000 ft. This block of country lies just west of the line of the great East African trough, the northern continuation of which passes along its eastern escarpment as it runs up to join the Red Sea. There is, however, in the centre a circular basin occupied by Lake Tsana.
Both in the east and west of the continent the bordering highlands are continued as strips of plateau parallel to the coast, the Abyssinian mountains being continued northwards along the Red Sea coast by a series of ridges reaching in places a height of 7000 ft. In the west the zone of high land is broader but somewhat lower. The most mountainous districts lie inland from the head of the Gulf of Guinea (Adamawa, &c.), where heights of 6000 to 8000 ft. are reached. Exactly at the head of the gulf the great peak of the Cameroon, on a line of Volcanic action continued by the islands to the south-west, has a height of 13,370 ft., while Clarence Peak, in Fernando Po, the first of the line of islands, rises to over 9000. Towards the extreme west the Futa Jallon highlands form an important diverging point of rivers, but beyond this, as far as the Atlas chain, the elevated rim of the continent is almost wanting.
The area between the east and west coast highlands, which north of 17° N. is mainly desert, is divided into separate basins by other bands of high ground, one of which runs nearly centrally through North Africa in a line corresponding roughly with the curved axis of the continent as a whole. The best marked of the basins so formed (the Congo basin) occupies a circular area bisected by the equator, once probably the site of an inland sea. The arid region, the Sahara—the largest desert in the world, covering 3,500,000 sq. m.—extends from the Atlantic to the Red Sea. Though generally of slight elevation it contains mountain ranges with peaks rising to 8000 ft. Bordered N.W. by the Atlas range, to the N.E. a rocky plateau separates it from the Mediterranean; this plateau gives place at the extreme east to the delta of the Nile. That river (see below) pierces the desert without modifying its character. The Atlas range, the north-westerly part of the continent, between its seaward and landward heights encloses elevated steppes in places 100 m. broad. From the inner slopes of the plateau numerous wadis take a direction towards the Sahara. The greater part of that now desert region is, indeed, furrowed by old water-channels.
The following table gives the approximate altitudes of the chief mountains and lakes of the continent:—
|Lereko or Sattima
The Hydrographic Systems.—From the outer margin of the African plateaus a large number of streams run to the sea with comparatively short courses, while the larger rivers flow for long distances on the interior highlands before breaking through the outer ranges. The main drainage of the continent is to the north and west, or towards the basin of the Atlantic Ocean. The high lake plateau of East Africa contains the head-waters of the Nile and Congo: the former the longest, the latter the largest river of the continent. The upper Nile receives its chief supplies from the mountainous region adjoining the Central African trough in the neighbourhood of the equator. Thence streams pour east to the Victoria Nyanza, the largest African lake (covering over 26,000 sq. m.), and west and north to the Albert Edward and Albert Nyanzas, to the latter of which the effluents of the other two lakes add their waters. Issuing from it the Nile flows north, and between 7° and 10° N. traverses a vast marshy level during which its course is liable to blocking by floating vegetation. After receiving the Bahr-el-Ghazal from the west and the Sobat, Blue Nile and Atbara from the Abyssinian highlands (the chief gathering ground of the flood-water), it crosses the great desert and enters the Mediterranean by a vast delta. The most remote head-stream of the Congo is the Chambezi, which flows south-west into the marshy Lake Bangweulu. From this lake issues the Congo, known in its upper course by various names. Flowing first south, it afterwards turns north through Lake Mweru and descends to the forest-clad basin of west equatorial Africa. Traversing this in a majestic northward curve and receiving vast supplies of water from many great tributaries, it finally turns south-west and cuts a way to the Atlantic Ocean through the western highlands. North of the Congo basin and separated from it by a broad undulation of the surface is the basin of Lake Chad—a flat-shored, shallow lake filled principally by the Shad coming from the south-east. West of this is the basin of the Niger, the third river of Africa, which, though flowing to the Atlantic, has its principal source in the far west, and reverses the direction of flow exhibited by the Nile and Congo. An important branch, however—the Benue—comes from the south-east. These four river-basins occupy the greater part of the lower plateaus of North and West Africa, the remainder consisting of arid regions watered only by intermittent streams which do not reach the sea. Of the remaining rivers of the Atlantic basin the Orange, in the extreme south, brings the drainage from the Drakensberg on the opposite side of the continent, while the Kunene, Kwanza, Ogowe and Sanaga drain the west corst highlands of the southern limb; the Volta, Komoe, Bandama, Gambia and Senegal the highlands of the western limb. North of the Senegal for over 1000 m. of coast the arid region reaches to the Atlantic. Farther north are the streams, with comparatively short courses, which reach the Atlantic and Mediterranean from the Atlas mountains.
Of the rivers flowing to the Indian Ocean the only one draining any large part of the interior plateaus is the Zambezi, whose western branches rise in the west coast highlands. The main stream has its rise in 11° 21′ 3″ S. 24° 22′ E. at an elevation of 5000 ft. It flows west and south for a considerable distance before turning to the east. All the largest tributaries, including the Shiré, the outflow of Lake Nyasa, flow down the southern slopes of the band of high ground which stretches across the conbnent in 10° to 12° S. In the south-west the Zambezi system interlaces with that of the Taukhe (or Tioghe), from which it at times receives surplus water. The rest of the water of the Taukhe, known in its middle course as the Okavango, is lost in a system of swamps and saltpans which formerly centred in Lake Ngami, now dried up. Farther south the Limpopo drains a portion of the interior plateau but breaks through the bounding highlands on the side of the continent nearest its source. The Rovuma, Rufiji, Tana, Juba and Webi Shebeli principally drain the outer slopes of the East African highlands, the last named losing itself in the sands in close proximity to the sea. Another large stream, the Hawash, rising in the Abyssinian mountains, is lost in a saline depression near the Gulf of Aden. Lastly, between the basins of the Atlantic and Indian Oceans there is an area of inland drainage along the centre of the East African plateau, directed chiefly into the lakes in the great rift-valley. The largest river is the Omo, which, fed by the rains of the Abyssinian highlands, carries down a large body of water into Lake Rudolf. The rivers of Africa are generally obstructed either by bars at their mouths or by cataracts at no great distance up-stream. But when these obstacles have been overcome the rivers and lakes afford a network of navigable waters of vast extent.
The calculation of the areas of African drainage systems, made by Dr A. Bludau (Petermanns Mitteilungen, 43, 1897, pp. 184-186) gives the following general results:—
|Basin of the Atlantic...||4,070,000||sq. m.|
| ””Indian Ocean..||2,086,000||”|
|Inland drainage area...||3,452,000||”|
|The areas of individual river-basins are:—|
|Congo(length over 3000 m.).||1,425,000||sq. m.|
|Nile( ” fully 4000 m.) .||1,082,000||”|
|Niger( ”about 2600 m.).||808,000||”|
|Zambezi ( ” ”2000 m.) .||513,500||”|
|Orange(length about 1300 m.).||370,505||”|
|”(actual drainage area).||172,500||”|
The area of the Congo basin is greater than that of any other river except the Amazon, while the African inland drainage area is greater than that of any continent but Asia, in which the corresponding area is 4,000,000 sq. m.
The principal African lakes have been mentioned in the description of the East African plateau, but some of the phenomena connected with them may be spoken of more particularly here. As a rule the lakes which occupy portions of the great rift-valleys have steep sides and are very deep. This is the case with the two largest of the type, Tanganyika and Nyasa, the latter of which has depths of 430 fathoms. Others, however, are shallow, and hardly, reach the steep sides of the valleys in the dry season. Such are Lake Rukwa, in a subsidiary depression north of Nyasa, and Eiassi and Manyara in the system of the eastern rift-valley. Lakes of the broad type are of moderate depth, the deepest sounding in Victoria Nyanza being under 50 fathoms. Apart from the seasonal variations of level, most of the lakes show periodic fluctuations, while a progressive desiccation of the whole region is said to be traceable, tending to the ultimate disappearance of the lakes. Such a drying up has been in progress during long geologic ages, but doubt exists as to its practical importance at the present time. The periodic fluctuations in the level of Lake Tanganyika are such that its outflow is intermittent. Besides the East African lakes the principal are:—Lake Chad, in the northern area of inland drainage; Bangweulu and Mweru, traversed by the head-stream of the Congo; and Leopold II. and Ntomba (Mantumba), within the great bend of that river. All, except possibly Mweru, are more or less shallow, and Chad appears to by drying up. The altitudes of the African lakes have already been stated.
Divergent opinions have been held as to the mode of origin of the East African lakes, especially Tanganyika, which some geologists have considered to represent an old arm of the sea, dating from a time when the whole central Congo basin was under water; others holding that the lake water has accumulated in a depression caused by subsidence. The former view is based on the existence in the lake of organisms of a decidedly marine type. They include a jelly-fish, molluscs, prawns, crabs, &c., and were at first considered to form an isolated group found in no other of the African lakes; but this supposition has been proved to be erroneous.
Islands.—With one exception—Madagascar—the African islands are small. Madagascar, with an area of 229,820 sq. m., is, after New Guinea and Borneo, the largest island of the world. It lies off the S.E. coast of the continent, from which it is separated by the deep Mozambique channel, 250 m. wide at its narrowest point. Madagascar in its general structure, as in flora and fauna, forms a connecting link between Africa and southern Asia. East of Madagascar are the small islands of Mauritius and Réunion. Sokotra lies E.N.E. of Cape Guardafui. Off the north-west coast are the Canary and Cape Verde archipelagoes. which, like some small islands in the Gulf of Guinea, are of volcanic origin.
Climate and Health.—Lying almost entirely within the tropics, and equally to north and south of the equator, Africa does not show excessive variations of temperature. Great heat is experienced in the lower plains and desert regions of North Africa, removed by the great width of the continent from the influence of the ocean, and here, too, the contrast between day and night, and between summer and winter, is greatest. (The rarity of the air and the great radiation during the night cause the temperature in the Sahara to fall occasionally to freezing point.) Farther south, the heat is to some extent modified by the moisture brought from the ocean, and by the greater elevation of a large part of the surface, especially in East Africa, where the range of temperature is wider than in the Congo basin or on the Guinea coast. In the extreme north and south the climate is a warm temperate one, the northern countries being on the whole hotter and drier than those in the southern zone; the south of the continent being narrower than the north, the influence of the surrounding ocean is more felt. The most important climatic differences are due to variations in the amount of rainfall. The wide heated plains of the Sahara, and in a lesser degree the corresponding zone of the Kalahari in the south, have an exceedingly scanty rainfall, the winds which blow over them from the ocean losing part of their moisture as they pass over the outer highlands, and becoming constantly drier owing to the heating effects of the burning soil of the interior; while the scarcity of mountain ranges in the more central parts likewise tends to prevent condensation. In the inter-tropical zone of summer precipitation, the rainfall is greatest when the sun is vertical or soon after. It is therefore greatest of all near the equator, where the sun is twice vertical, and less in the direction of both tropics. The rainfall zones are, however, somewhat deflected from a due west-to-east direction, the drier northern conditions extending southwards along the east coast, and those of the south northwards along the west. Within the equatorial zone certain areas, especially on the shores of the Gulf of Guinea and in the upper Nile basin, have an intensified rainfall, but this rarely approaches that of the rainiest regions of the world. The rainiest district in all Africa is a strip of coastland west of Mount Cameroon, where there is a mean annual rainfall of about 390 in. as compared with a mean of 458 in. at Cherrapunji, in Assam. The two distinct rainy seasons of the equatorial zone, where the sun is vertical at half-yearly intervals, become gradually merged into one in the direction of the tropics, where the sun is overhead but once. Snow falls on all the higher mountain ranges, and on the highest the climate is thoroughly Alpine. The countries bordering the Sahara are much exposed to a very dry wind, full of fine particles of sand, blowing from the desert towards the sea. Known in Egypt as the khamsin, on the Mediterranean as the sirocco, it is called on the Guinea coast the harmattan. This wind is not invariably hot; its great dryness causes so much evaporation that cold is not infrequently the result. Similar dry winds blow from the Kalahari in the south. On the eastern coast the monsoons of the Indian Ocean are regularly felt, and on the south-east hurricanes are occasionally experienced.
While the climate of the north and south, especially the south, is eminently healthy, and even the intensely heated Sahara is salubrious by reason of its dryness, the tropical zone as a whole is, for European races, the most unhealthy portion of the world. This is especially the case in the lower and moister regions, such as the west coast, where malarial fever is very prevalent and deadly; the most unfavourable factors being humidity with absence of climatic variation (daily or seasonal). The higher plateaus, where not only is the average temperature lower, but such variations are more extensive, are more healthy; and in certain localities (e.g. Abyssinia and parts of British East Africa) Europeans find the climate suitable for permanent residence. On tablelands over 6500 ft. above the sea, frost is not uncommon at night, even in places directly under the equator. The acclimatization of white men in tropical Africa generally is dependent largely on the successful treatment of tropical diseases. Districts which had been notoriously deadly to Europeans were rendered comparatively healthy after the discovery, in 1899, of the species of mosquito which propagates malarial fever, and the measures thereafter taken for its destruction and the filling up of swamps. The rate of mortality among the natives from tropical diseases is also high, one of the most fatal being that known as sleeping sickness. (The ravages of this disease, which also attacks Europeans, reached alarming proportions between 1893 and 1907, and in the last-named year an international conference was held in London to consider measures to combat it.) When removed to colder regions natives of the equatorial districts suffer greatly from chest complaints. Smallpox also makes great ravages among the negro population.
Flora.—The vegetation of Africa follows very closely the distribution of heat and moisture. The northern and southern temperate zones have a flora distinct from that of the continent generally, which is tropical. In the countries bordering the Mediterranean are groves of oranges and olive trees, evergreen oaks, cork trees and pines, intermixed with cypresses, myrtles, arbutus and fragrant tree-heaths. South of the Atlas range the conditions alter. The zones of minimum rainfall have a very scanty flora, consisting of plants adapted to resist the great dryness. Characteristic of the Sahara is the date-palm, which flourishes where other vegetation can scarcely maintain existence, while in the semi-desert regions the acacia (whence is obtained gum-arabic) is abundant. The more humid regions have a richer vegetation—dense forest where the rainfall is greatest and variations of temperature least, conditions found chiefly on the tropical coasts, and in the west African equatorial basin with its extension towards the upper Nile; and savanna interspersed with trees on the greater part of the plateaus, passing as the desert regions are approached into a scrub vegetation consisting of thorny acacias, &c. Forests also occur on the humid slopes of mountain ranges up to a certain elevation. In the coast regions the typical tree is the mangrove, which flourishes wherever the soil is of a swamp character. The dense forests of West Africa contain, in addition to a great variety of dicotyledonous trees, two palms, the Elaeis guineensis (oil-palm) and Raphia vinifera (bamboo-palm), not found, generally speaking, in the savanna regions. The bombax or silk-cotton tree attains gigantic proportions in the forests, which are the home of the indiarubber-producing plants and of many valuable kinds of timber trees, such as odum (Chlorophora excelsa), ebony, mahogany (Khaya senegalensis), African teak or oak (Oldfieldia africana) and camwood (Baphia nitida.) The climbing plants in the tropical forests are exceedingly luxuriant and the undergrowth or “bush” is extremely dense. In the savannas the most characteristic trees are the monkey bread tree or baobab (Adansonia digitata), doom palm (Hyphaene) and euphorbias. The coffee plant grows wild in such widely separated places as Liberia and southern Abyssinia. The higher mountains have a special flora showing close agreement over wide intervals of space, as well as affinities with the mountain flora of the eastern Mediterranean, the Himalayas and Indo-China (cf. A. Engler, Über die Hochgebirgsflora des tropischen Afrika, 1892).
In the swamp regions of north-east Africa the papyrus and associated plants, including the soft-wooded ambach, flourish in immense quantities—and little else is found in the way of vegetation. South Africa is largely destitute of forest save in the lower valleys and coast regions. Tropical flora disappears, and in the semi-desert plains the fleshy, leafless, contorted species of kapsias, mesembryanthemums, aloes and other succulent plants make their appearance. There are, too, valuable timber trees, such as the yellow pine (Podocarpus elongatus), stinkwood (Ocotea), sneezewood or Cape ebony (Pteroxylon utile) and ironwood. Extensive miniature woods of heaths are found in almost endless variety and covered throughout the greater part of the year with innumerable blossoms in which red is very prevalent. Of the grasses of Africa alfa is very abundant in the plateaus of the Atlas range.
Fauna.—The fauna again shows the effect of the characteristics of the vegetation. The open savannas are the home of large ungulates, especially antelopes, the giraffe (peculiar to Africa), zebra, buffalo, wild ass and four species of rhinoceros; and of carnivores, such as the lion, leopard, hyaena, &c. The okapi (a genus restricted to Africa) is found only in the dense forests of the Congo basin. Bears are confined to the Atlas region, wolves and foxes to North Africa. The elephant (though its range has become restricted through the attacks of hunters) is found both in the savannas and forest regions, the latter being otherwise poor in large game, though the special habitat of the chimpanzee and gorilla. Baboons and mandrills, with few exceptions, are peculiar to Africa. The single-humped camel—as a domestic animal—is especially characteristic of the northern deserts and steppes.
The rivers in the tropical zone abound with hippopotami and crocodiles, the former entirely confined to Africa. The vast herds of game, formerly so characteristic of many parts of Africa, have much diminished with the increase of intercourse with the interior. Game reserves have, however, been established in South Africa, British Central Africa, British East Africa, Somaliland, &c., while measures for the protection of wild animals were laid down in an international convention signed in May 1900.
The ornithology of northern Africa presents a close resemblance to that of southern Europe, scarcely a species being found which does not also occur in the other countries bordering the Mediterranean. Among the birds most characteristic of Africa are the ostrich and the secretary-bird. The ostrich is widely dispersed, but is found chiefly in the desert and steppe regions. The secretary-bird is common in the south. The weaver birds and their allies, including the long-tailed whydahs, are abundant, as are, among game-birds, the francolin and guinea-fowl. Nany of the smaller birds, such as the sun-birds, bee-eaters, the parrots and halcyons, as well as the larger plantain-eaters, are noted for the brilliance of their plumage. Of reptiles the lizard and chameleon are common, and there are a number of venomous serpents, though these are not so numerous as in other tropical countries. The scorpion is abundant. Of insects Africa has many thousand different kinds; of these the locust is the proverbial scourge of the continent, and the ravages of the termites or white ants are almost incredible. The spread of malaria by means of mosquitoes has already been mentioned. The tsetse fly, whose bite is fatal to all domestic animals, is common in many districts of South and East Africa. Fortunately it is found nowhere outside Africa. (E. He.; F. R. C.)
In shape and general geological structure Africa bears a close resemblance to India. Both possess a meridional extension with a broad east and west folded region in the north. In both a successive series of continental deposits, ranging from the Carboniferous to the Rhaetic, rests on an older base of crystalline rocks. In the words of Professor Suess, “India and Africa are true plateau countries.”
Of the primitive axes of Africa few traces remain. Both on the east and west a broad zone of crystalline rocks extends parallel with the coast-line to form the margin of the elevated plateau of the interior. Occasionally the crystalline belt comes to the coast, but it is usually reached by two steps known as the coastal belt and foot-plateau. On the flanks of the primitive western axis certain ancient sedimentary strata are thrown into folds which were completed before the commencement of the mesozoic period. In the south, the later palaeozoic rocks are also thrown into acute folds by a movement acting from the south, and which ceased towards the close of the mesozoic period. In northern Africa the folded region of the Atlas belongs to the comparatively recent date of the Alpine system. None of these earth movements affected the interior, for here the continental mesozoic deposits rest, undisturbed by folding, on the primary sedimentary and crystalline rocks. The crystalline massif, therefore, presents a solid block which has remained elevated since early palaeozoic times, and against which earth waves of several geological periods have broken.
The formations older than the mesozoic are remarkably unfossiliferous, so that the determination of their age is frequently a matter of speculation, and in the following table the European equivalents of the pre-Karroo formations in many regions must be regarded as subject to considerable revision.
Rocks of Archean age cover wide areas in the interior, in West and East Africa and across the Sahara. Along the coastal margins they underlie the newer formations and appear in the deep valleys and kloofs wherever denudation has laid them bare. The prevailing types are granites, gneisses and schists. In the central regions the predominant strike of the fohae is north and south. The rocks, for convenience classed as pre-Cambrian, occur as several unconformable groups, chiefly developed in the south where alone their stratigraphy has been determined. They are unfossiliferous, and in the absence of undoubted Cambrian, Ordovician and Silurian strata in Africa they may be regarded as of older date than any of these formations. The general occurrence of jasper-bearing rocks is of interest, as these are always present in the ancient pressure-altered sedimentary formations of America and Europe. Some unfossiliferous conglomerates, sandstones and dolomites in South Africa and on the west coast are considered to belong to the Cambrian, Ordovician and Silurian formations, but merely from their occurrence beneath strata yielding Devonian fossils. In Cape Colony the Silurian age of the Table Mountain Sandstone is based on such evidence.
The Devonian and Carboniferous formations are well represented in the north and south and in northern Angola.
Up to the close of the palaeozoic period the relative positions of the ancient land masses and oceans remain unsolved; but the absence of marine strata of early palaeozoic age from Central Africa points to there being land in this direction. In late Carboniferous times Africa and India were undoubtedly united to form a large continent, called by Suess Gondwana Land. In each country the same succession of the rocks is met with; over both the same specialized orders of reptiles roamed and were entombed.
The interior of the African portion of Gondwana Land was occupied by several large lakes in which an immense thickness—amounting to over 18,000 ft. in South Africa—of sandstones and marls, forming the Karroo system, was laid down. This is par excellence the African formation, and covers immense areas in South Africa and the Congo basin, with detached portions in East Africa. During the whole of the time—Carboniferous to Rhaetic—that this great accumulation of freshwater beds was taking place, the interior of the continent must have been undergoing depression. The commencement of the period was marked by one of the most wonderful episodes in the geological history of Africa. Preserved in the formation known as the Dwyka Conglomerate, are evidences that at this time the greater portion of South Africa was undergoing extreme glaciation, while the same conditions appear to have prevailed in India and Australia. At the close of the Karroo period there was a remarkable manifestation of volcanic activity which again has its parallel in the Deccan traps of India.
How far the Karroo formation extended beyond its present confines has not been determined. To the east it reached India. In the south all that can be said is that it extended to the south of Worcester in Cape Colony. The Crystal Mountains of Angola may represent its western boundary; while the absence of mesozoic strata beneath the Cretaceous rocks of the mid-Sahara indicates that the system of Karroo lakeland had here reached its most northerly extension. Towards the close of the Karroo period, possibly about the middle, the southern rim of the great central depression became ridged up to form the folded regions of the Zwaarteberg, Cedarberg and Langeberg mountains in Cape Colony. This folded belt gives Africa its abrupt southern termination, and may be regarded as an embryonic indication of its present outline. The exact date of the maximum development of this folding is unknown, but it had done its work and some 10,000 ft. of strata had been removed before the commencement of the Cretaceous period. It appears to approximate in time to the similar earth movement and denudation at the close of the palaeozoic period in Europe. It was doubtless connected with the disruption of Gondwana Land, since it is known that this great alteration of geographical outline commenced in Jurassic times.
The breaking up of Gondwana Land is usually considered to have been caused by a series of blocks of country being let down by faulting with the consequent formation of the Indian Ocean. Other blocks, termed horsts, remained unmoved, the island of Madagascar affording a striking example. In the African portion Ruwenzori is regarded by some geologists to be a block mountain or horst.
In Jurassic times the sea gained access to East Africa north of Mozambique, but does not appear to have reached far beyond the foot-plateau except in Abyssinia.
The Cretaceous seas appear to have extended into the central Saharan regions, for fossils of this age have been discovered in the interior. On the west coast Cretaceous rocks extend continuously from Mogador to Cape Blanco. From here they are absent up to the Gabun river, where they commence to form a narrow fringe as far as the Kunene river, though often overlain by recent deposits. They are again absent up to the Sunday river in Cape Colony, where Lower Cretaceous rocks (for long considered to be of Oolitic age) of an inshore character are met with. Strata of Upper Cretaceous age occur in Pondoland and Natal, and are of exceptional interest since the fossils show an intermingling of Pacific types with other forms having European affinities. In Mozambique and in German East Africa, Cretaceous rocks extend from the coast to a distance inland of over 100 m.
Except in northern Africa, the Tertiary formations only occur in a few isolated patches on the east and west coasts. In northern Africa they are well developed and of much interest. They contain the well-known nummulitic limestone of Eocene age, which has been traced from Egypt across Asia to China. The Upper Eocene rocks of Egypt have also yielded primeval types of the Proboscidea and other mammalia. Evidences for the greater extension of the Eocene seas than was formerly considered to be the case have been discovered around Sokoto. During Miocene times Passarge considers that the region of the Zambezi underwent extreme desiccation.
The effect of the Glacial epoch in Europe is shown in northern Africa by the moraines of the higher Atlas, and the wider extension of the glaciers on Kilimanjaro, Kenya and Ruwenzori, and by the extensive accumulations of gravel over the Sahara.
The earliest signs of igneous activity in Africa are to be found in the granites, intrusive into the older rocks of the Cape peninsula, into those of the Transvaal, and into the gneisses and schists of Central Africa. The Ventersdorp boulder beds of the Transvaal may be of early palaeozoic age; but as a whole the palaeozoic period in Africa was remarkably free from volcanic and igneous disturbances. The close of the Stormberg period (Rhaetic) was one of great volcanic activity in South Africa. Whilst the later Secondary and Tertiary formations were being laid down in North Africa and around the margins of the rest of the continent, Africa received its last great accumulation of strata and at the same time underwent a consecutive series of earth-movements. The additional strata consist of the immense quantities of volcanic material on the plateau of East Africa, the basalt flows of West Africa and possibly those of the Zambezi basin. The exact period of the commencement of volcanic activity is unknown. In Abyssinia the Ashangi traps are certainly post-Oolitic. In East Africa the fissure eruptions are considered to belong to the Cretaceous. These early eruptions were followed by those of Kenya, Mawenzi, Elgon, Chibcharagnani, and these by the eruptions of Kibo, Longonot, Suswa and the Kyulu Mountains. The last phase of vulcanicity took place along the great meridional rifts of East Africa, and though feebly manifested has not entirely passed away. In northern Africa a continuous sequence of volcanic events has taken place from Eocene times to latest Tertiary; but in South Africa it is doubtful if there have been any intrusions later then Cretaceous.
During this long continuance of vulcanicity, earth-movements were in progress. In the north the chief movements gave rise to the system of latitudinal folding and faulting of the Moroccan and Algerian Atlas, the last stages being represented by the formation of the Algerian and Moroccan coast-outline and the sundering of Europe from Africa at the Straits of Gibraltar. Whilst northern Africa was being folded, the East African plateau was broken up by a series of longitudinal rifts extending from Nyasaland to Egypt. The depressed areas contain the long, narrow, precipitously walled lakes of East Africa. The Red Sea also occupies a meridional trough.
Lastly there are the recent elevations of the northern coastal regions, the Barbary coast and along the east coast. (W. G.*)
In attempting a review of the races and tribes which inhabit Africa, their distribution, movements and culture, it is advisable that three points be borne in mind. The first of these is the comparative absence of natural barriers in the interior, owing to which intercommunication between tribes, the dissemination of culture and tribal migration have been considerably facilitated. Hence the student must be prepared to find that, for the most part, there are no sharp divisions to mark the extent of the various races composing the population, but that the number of what may be termed “transitional” peoples is unusually large. The second point is that Africa, with the exception of the lower Nile valley and what is known as Roman Africa (see Africa, Roman), is, so far as its native inhabitants are concerned, a continent practically without a history, and possessing no records from which such a history might be reconstructed. The early movements of tribes, the routes by which they reached their present abodes, and the origin of such forms of culture as may be distinguished in the general mass of customs, beliefs, &c., are largely matters of conjecture. The negro is essentially the child of the moment; and his memory, both tribal and individual, is very short. The third point is that many theories which have been formulated with respect to such matters are unsatisfactory owing to the small amount of information concerning many of the tribes in the interior.
Excluding the Europeans who have found a home in various parts of Africa, and the Asiatics, Chinese and natives of India introduced by them (see section History below), the population of Africa consists of the following elements:—the Bushman, the Negro, the Eastern Hamite, The chief
races.the Libyan and the Semite, from the intermingling of which in various proportions a vast number of “transitional” tribes has arisen. The Bushmen (q.v.), a race of short yellowish-brown nomad hunters, inhabited, in the earliest times of which there is historic knowledge, the land adjoining the southern and eastern borders of the Kalahari desert, into which they were gradually being forced by the encroachment of the Hottentots and Bantu tribes. But signs of their former presence are not wanting as far north as Lake Tanganyika, and even, it is rumoured, still farther north. With them may be classed provisionally the Hottentots, a pastoral people of medium stature and yellowish-brown complexion. who in early times shared with the Bushmen the whole of what is now Cape Colony. Though the racial affinities of the Hottentots have been disputed, the most satisfactory view on the whole is that they represent a blend of Bushman, Negroid and Hamitic elements. Practically the rest of Africa, from the southern fringe of the Sahara and the upper valley of the Nile to the Cape, with the exception of Abyssinia and Galla and Somali-lands, is peopled by Negroes and the “transitional” tribes to which their admixture with Libyans on the north, and Semites (Arabs) and Hamites on the north-east and east, has given rise. A slight qualification of the last statement is necessary, in so far as, among the Fula in the western Sudan, and the Ba-Hima, &c., of the Victoria Nyanza, Libyan and Hamitic elements are respectively stronger than the Negroid. Of the tracts excepted, Abyssinia is inhabited mainly by Semito-Hamites (though a fairly strong negroid element can be found), and Somali and Galla-lands by Hamites. North of the Sahara in Algeria and Morocco are the Libyans (Berbers, q.v.), a distinctively white people, who have in certain respects (e.g. religion) fallen under Arab influence. In the north-east the brown-skinned Hamite and the Semite mingle in varied proportions. The Negroid peoples, which inhabit the vast tracts of forest and savanna between the areas held by Bushmen to the south and the Hamites, Semites and Libyans to the north, fall into two groups divided by a line running from the Cameroon (Rio del Rey) crossing the Ubangi river below the bend and passing between the Ituri and the Semliki rivers, to Lake Albert and thence with a slight southerly trend to the coast. North of this line are the Negroes proper, south are the Bantu. The division is primarily philological. Among the true Negroes the greatest linguistic confusion prevails; for instance, in certain parts of Nigeria it is possible to find half-a-dozen villages within a comparatively small area speaking, not different dialects, but different languages, a fact which adds greatly to the difficulty of political administration. To the south of the line the condition of affairs is entirely different; here the entire population speaks one or another dialect of the Bantu Languages (q.v.) As said before, the division is primarily linguistic and, especially upon the border line, does not always correspond with the variations of physical type. At the same time it is extremely convenient and to a certain extent justifiable on physical and psychological grounds; and it may be said roughly that while the linguistic uniformity of the Bantu is accompanied by great variation of physical type, the converse is in the main true of the Negro proper, especially where least affected by Libyan and Hamitic admixture, e.g. on the Guinea coast. The variation of type among the Bantu is due probably to a varying admixture of alien blood, which is more apparent as the east coast is approached. This foreign element cannot be identified with certainty, but since the Bantu seem to approach the Hamites in those points where they differ from the Negro proper, and since the physical characteristics of Hamites and Semites are very similar, it seems probable that the last two races have entered into the composition of the Bantu, though it is highly improbable that Semitic influence should have permeated any distance from the east coast. An extremely interesting section of the population not hitherto mentioned is constituted by the Pygmy tribes inhabiting the densely forested regions along the equator from Uganda to the Gabun and living the life of nomadic hunters. The affinities of this little people are undecided, owing to the small amount of knowledge concerning them. The theories which connected them with the Bushmen do not seem to be correct. It is more probable that they are to be classed among the Negroids, with whom they appear to have intermingled to a certain extent in the upper basin of the Ituri, and perhaps elsewhere. As far as is known they speak no language peculiar to themselves but adopt that of the nearest agricultural tribe. They are of a dark brown complexion, with very broad noses, lips but slightly everted, and small but usually sturdy physique, though often considerably emaciated owing to insufficiency of food. Another peculiar tribe, also of short stature, are the Vaalpens of the steppe region of the north Transvaal. Practically nothing is known of them except that they are said to be very dark in colour and live in holes in the ground, and under rock shelters.
Having indicated the chief races of which in various degrees of purity and intermixture the population of Africa is formed, it remains to consider them in greater detail, particularly from the cultural standpoint. This is hardly possible without drawing attention to the main physical Principal ethnological zones.characters of the continent, as far as they affect the inhabitants. For ethnological purposes three principal zones may be distinguished; the first two are respectively a large region of steppes and desert in the north, and a smaller region of steppes and desert in the south. These two zones are connected by a vertical strip of grassy highland lying mainly to the east of the chain of great lakes. The third zone is a vast region of forest and rivers in the west centre, comprising the greater part of the basin of the Congo and the Guinea coast. The rainfall, which also has an important bearing upon the culture of peoples, will be found on the whole to be greatest in the third zone and also in the eastern highlands, and of course least in the desert, the steppes and savannas standing midway between the two. As might be expected these variations are accompanied by certain variations in culture. In the best-watered districts agriculture is naturally of the greatest importance, except where the density of the forest renders the work of clearing too arduous. The main portion therefore of the inhabitants of the forest zone are agriculturists, save only the nomad Pygmies, who live in the inmost recesses of the forest and support themselves by hunting the game with which it abounds. Agriculture, too, flourishes in the eastern highlands, and throughout the greater part of the steppe and savanna region of the northern and southern zones, especially the latter. In fact the only Bantu tribes who are not agriculturists are the Ova-Herero of German South-West Africa, whose purely pastoral habits are the natural outcome of the barren country they inhabit. But the wide open plains and slopes surrounding the forest area are eminently suited to cattle-breeding, and there are few tribes who do not take advantage of the fact. At the same time a natural check is imposed upon the desire for cattle, which is so characteristic of the Bantu peoples. This is constituted by the tsetse fly, which renders a pastoral life absolutely impossible throughout large tracts in central and southern Africa. In the northern zone this check is absent, and the number of more essentially pastoral peoples, such as the eastern Hamites, Masai, Dinka, Fula, &c., correspondingly greater. The desert regions yield support only to nomadic peoples, such as the Tuareg, Tibbu, Bedouins and Bushmen, though the presence of numerous oases in the north renders the condition of life easier for the inhabitants. Upon geographical conditions likewise depend to a large extent the political conditions prevailing among the various tribes. Thus among the wandering tribes of the desert and of the heart of the forests, where large communities are impossible, a patriarchal system prevails with the family as the unit. Where the forest is less dense and small agricultural communities begin to make their appearance, the unit expands to the village with its headman. Where the forest thins to the savanna and steppe, and communication is easier, are found the larger kingdoms and “empires” such as, in the north those established by the Songhai, Hausa, Fula, Bagirmi, Ba-Hima, &c., and in the south the states of Lunda, Kazembe, the Ba-Rotse, &c.
But if ease of communication is favourable to the rise of large states and the cultural progress that usually accompanies it, it is, nevertheless, often fatal to the very culture which, at first, it fostered, in so far as the absence of natural boundaries renders invasion easy. A good example of this is furnished by the history of the western Sudan and particularly of East and South-East Africa. From its geographical position Africa looks naturally to the east, and it is on this side that it has been most affected by external culture both by land (across the Sinaitic peninsula) and by sea. Though a certain amount of Indonesian and even aboriginal Indian influence has been traced in African ethnography, the people who have produced the most serious ethnic disturbances (apart from modern Europeans) are the Arabs. This is particularly the case in East Africa, where the systematic slave raids organized by them and carried out with the assistance of various warlike tribes reduced vast regions to a state of desolation. In the north and west of Africa, however, the Arab has had a less destructive but more extensive and permanent influence in spreading the Mahommedan religion throughout the whole of the Sudan.
The fact that the physical geography of Africa affords fewer natural obstacles to racial movements on the side most exposed to foreign influence, renders it obvious that the culture most characteristically African must be sought on the other side. It is therefore in the forests of the Congo, and among the lagoons and estuaries of the Guinea coast, that this earlier culture will most probably be found. The characteristic African culture.That there is a culture distinctive of this area, irrespective of the linguistic line dividing the Bantu from the Negro proper, has now been recognized. Its main features may be summed as follows:—a purely agricultural life, with the plantain, yam and manioc (the last two of American origin) as the staple food; cannibalism common; rectangular houses with ridged roofs; scar-tattooing; clothing of bark-cloth or palm-fibre; occasional chipping or extraction of upper incisors; bows with strings of cane, as the principal weapons, shields of wood or wickerwork; religion, a primitive form of fetishism with the belief that death is due to witchcraft; ordeals, secret societies, the use of masks and anthropomorphic figures, and wooden gongs. With this may be contrasted the culture of the Bantu peoples to the south and east, also agriculturists, but in addition, where possible, great cattle-breeders, whose staple food is millet and milk. These are distinguished by circular huts with domed or conical roofs; clothing of skin or leather; occasional chipping or extraction of lower incisors; spears as the principal weapons, bows, where found, with a sinew cord, shields of hide or leather; religion, ancestor-worship with belief in the power of the magicians as rain-makers. Though this difference in culture may well be explained on the supposition that the first is the older and more representative of Africa, this theory must not be pushed too far. Many of the distinguishing characteristics of the two regions are doubtless due simply to environment, even the difference in religion. Ancestor-worship occurs most naturally among a people where tribal organization has reached a fairly advanced stage, and is the natural outcome of patriotic reverence for a successful chief and his councillors. Rain-making, too, is of little importance in a well-watered region, but a matter of vital interest to an agricultural people where the rainfall is slight and irregular.
Within the eastern and southern Bantu area certain cultural variations occur; beehive huts are found among the Zulu-Xosa and Herero, giving place among the Bechuana to the cylindrical variety with conical roof, a type which, with few exceptions, extends north to Abyssinia. The tanged spearhead characteristic of the south is replaced by the socketed variety towards the north. Circumcision, characteristic of the Zulu-Xosa and Bechuana, is not practised by many tribes farther north; tooth-mutilation, on the contrary, is absent among the more southern tribes. The lip-plug is found in the eastern area, especially among the Nyasa tribes, but not in the south. The head-rest common in the south-east and the southern fringe of the forest area is not found far north of Tanganyika until the Horn of Africa is reached.
In the regions outside the western area occupied by the Negro proper, exclusive of the upper Nile, the similarities of culture outweigh the differences. Here the cylindrical type of hut prevails; clothing is of skin or leather but is very scanty; iron ornaments are worn in profusion; arrows are not feathered; shields of hide, spears with leather sheaths are found and also fighting bracelets. Certain small differences appear between the eastern and western portions, the dividing line being formed by the boundary between Bornu and Hausaland. Characteristic of the east are the harp and the throwing-club and throwing knife, the last of which has penetrated into the forest area. Typical of the west are the bow and the dagger with the ring hilt. The tribes of the upper Nile are somewhat specialized, though here, too, are found the cylindrical hut, iron ornaments, fighting bracelets, &c., characteristic of the Sudanese tribes. Here the removal of the lower incisors is common, and circumcision entirely absent.
Throughout the rest of the Sudan is found Semitic culture introduced by the Arabized Libyan. Circumcision, as is usual among Mahommedan tribes, is universal, and tooth-mutilation absent; of other characteristics, the use of the sword has penetrated to the northern portion of the forest area. The culture prevailing in the Horn of Africa is, naturally, mainly Hamito-Semitic; here are found both cylindrical and bee-hive huts, the sword (which has been adopted by the Masai to the south), the lyre (which has found its way to some of the Nilotic tribes) and the head-rest. Circumcision is practically universal. As has been said earlier, the history of Africa reaches back but a short distance, except, of course, as far as the lower Nile valley and Roman Africa is concerned; elsewhere no records exist, save tribal traditions, and these only relate to very recent events. Even archaeology, which can often sketch the main outlines of a people's history, is here practically powerless, owing to the insufficiency of data. It is true that stone implements of palaeolithic and neolithic types are found sporadically in the Nile valley, Somali land, on the Zambezi, in Cape Colony and the northern portions of the Congo Free State, as well as in Algeria and Tunisia; but the localities are far too few and too widely separated to warrant the inference that they are to be in any way connected. Moreover, where stone implements are found they are, as a rule, very near, even actually on, the surface of the earth; nothing occurs resembling the regular stratification of Europe, and consequently no argument based on geological grounds is possible.
The lower Nile valley, however, forms an exception; flint implements of a palaeolithic type have been found near Thebes, not only on the surface of the ground, which for several thousand years has been desert owing to the contraction of the river-bed, but also in stratified gravel of an older date. References to a number of papers bearing on the discussion to which their discovery has given rise may be found in an article by Mr H. R. Hall in Man, 1905, No. 19. The Egyptian and also the Somali land finds appear to be true palaeoliths in type and remarkably similar to those found in Europe. But evidence bearing on the Stone age in Africa, if the latter existed apart from the localities mentioned, is so slight that little can be said save that from the available evidence the palaeoliths of the Nile valley alone can with any degree of certainty be assigned to a remote period of antiquity, and that the chips scattered over Mashonaland and the regions occupied within historic times by Bushmen are the most recent; since it has been shown that the stone flakes were used by the medieval Makalanga to engrave their hard pottery and the Bushmen were still using stone implements in the 19th century. Other early remains, but of equally uncertain date, are the stone circles of Algeria, the Cross river and the Gambia. The large system of ruined forts and “cities” in Mashonaland, at Zimbabwe and elsewhere, concerning which so many ingenious theories have been woven, have been proved to date from medieval times.
Thus while in Europe there is a Stone age, divided into periods
according to various types of implement disposed in geological
strata, and followed in orderly succession by the ages
of Bronze and Iron, in Africa can be found no true
Stone age and practically no Bronze at all. The reason
stocks. is not far to seek; Africa is a country of iron, which is found distributed widely throughout the continent in ores so rich that the metal can be extracted with very little trouble and by the simplest methods. Iron has been worked from time immemorial by the Negroid peoples, and whole tribes are found whose chief industry is the smelting and forging of the metal. Under such conditions, questions relating to the origin and spread of the racial stocks which form the population of Africa cannot be answered with any certainty; at best only a certain amount of probability can be attained.
Five of these racial stocks have been mentioned: Bushman, Negro, Hamite, Semite, Libyan, the last three probably related through some common ancestor. Of these the honour of being considered the most truly African belongs to the two first. It is true that people of Negroid type are found elsewhere, principally in Melanesia, but as yet their possible connexion with the African Negro is little more than theoretical, and for the present purposes it need not be considered.
The origin of the Bushman is lost in obscurity, but he may be conceived as the original inhabitant of the southern portion of the continent. The original home of the Negro, at first an agriculturist, is most probably to be found in the neighbourhood of the great lakes, whence he penetrated along the fringe of the Sahara to the west and across the eastern highlands southward. Northerly expansion was prevented by the early occupation of the Nile valley, the only easy route to the Mediterranean, but there seems no doubt that the population of ancient Egypt contained a distinct Negroid element. The question as to the ethnic affinities of the pre-dynastic Egyptians is still unsolved; but they may be regarded as, in the main, Hamitic, though it is a question how far it is just to apply a name which implies a definite specialization in what may be comparatively modern times to a people of such antiquity.
The Horn of Africa appears to have been the centre from which the Hamites spread, and the pressure they seem to have applied to the Negro tribes, themselves also in process of expansion, sent forth larger waves of emigrants from the latter. These emigrants, already affected by the Hamitic pastoral culture, and with a strain of Hamitic blood in their veins, passed rapidly down the open tract in the east, doubtless exterminating their predecessors, except such few as took refuge in the mountains and swamps. The advance-guard of this wave of pastoral Negroids, in fact primitive Bantu, mingled with the Bushmen and produced the Hottentots. The penetration of the forest area must certainly have taken longer and was probably accomplished as much from the south-east, up the Zambezi valley, as from any other quarter. It was a more peaceful process, since natural obstacles are unfavourable to rapid movements of large bodies of immigrants, though not so serious as to prevent the spread of language and culture. A modern parallel to the spread of Bantu speech is found in the rise of the Hausa language, which is gradually enlarging its sphere of influence in the western and central Sudan. Thus those qualities, physical and otherwise, in which the Bantu approach the Hamites gradually fade as we proceed westward through the Congo basin, while in the east, among the tribes to the west of Tanganyika and on the upper Zambezi, “transitional” forms of culture are found. In later times this gradual pressure from the south-east became greater, and resulted, at a comparatively recent date, in the irruption of the Fang into the Gabun.
The earlier stages of the southern movement must have been accompanied by a similar movement westward between the Sahara and the forest; and, probably, at the same time, or even earlier, the Libyans crossing the desert had begun to press upon the primitive Negroes from the north. In this way were produced the Fula, who mingled further with the Negro to give birth to the Mandingo, Wolof and Tukulor. It would appear that either Libyan (Fula) or, less probably, Hamitic, blood enters into the composition of the Zandeh peoples on the Nile-Congo watershed. These Libyans or Berbers, included by G. Sergi in his “Mediterranean Race,” were active on the north coast of Africa in very early times, and had relations with the Egyptians from a prehistoric period. For long these movements continued, always in the same direction, from north to south and from east to west; though, of course, more rapid changes took place in the open country, especially in the great eastern highway from north to south, than in the forest area. Large states arose in the western Sudan; Ghana flourished in the 7th century A.D., Melle in the 11th, Songhai in the 14th, and Bornu in the 16th.
Meanwhile in the east began the southerly movement of the Bechuana, which was probably, spread over a considerable period. Later than they, but proceeding faster, came the Zulu-Xosa (“Kaffir”) peoples, who followed a line nearer the coast and outflanked them, surrounding them on the south. Then followed a time of great ethnical confusion in South Africa, during which tribes flourished, split up and disappeared; but ere this the culture represented by the ruins in Rhodesia had waxed and waned. It is uncertain who were the builders of the forts and “cities,” but it is not improbable that they may be found to have been early Bechuana. The Zulu-Xosa, Bechuana and Herero together form a group which may conveniently be termed “Southern Bantu.”
Finally began a movement hitherto unparalleled in the history of African migration; certain peoples of Zulu blood began to press north, spreading destruction in their wake. Of these the principal were the Matabele and Angoni. The movement continued as far as the Victoria Nyanza. Here, on the border-line of Negro, Bantu and Hamite, important changes had taken place. Certain of the Negro tribes had retired to the swamps of the Nile, and had become somewhat specialized, both physically and culturally (Shilluk, Dinka, Alur, Acholi, &c.). These had blended with the Hamites to produce such races as the Masai and kindred tribes. The old Kitwara empire, which comprised the plateau land between the Ruwenzori range and Kavirondo, had broken up into small states, usually governed by a Hamitic (Ba-Hima) aristocracy. The more extensive Zang (Zenj) empire, of which the name Zanzibar (Zanguebar) is a lasting memorial, extending along the sea-board from Somaliland to the Zambezi, was also extinct. The Arabs had established themselves firmly on the coast, and thence made continual slave-raids into the interior, penetrating later to the Congo. The Swahili, inhabiting the coast-line from the equator to about 16° S., are a somewhat heterogeneous mixture of Bantu with a tinge of Arab blood.
In the neighbourhood of Victoria Nyanza, where Hamite, Bantu, Nilotic Negro and Pygmy are found in close contact, the ethnic relations of tribes are often puzzling, but the Bantu not under a Hamitic domination have been divided by F. Stuhlmann into the Older Bantu (Wanyamwezi, Wasukuma, Wasambara, Waseguha, Wasagara, Wasaramo, &c.) and the Bantu of Later Immigration (Wakikuyu, Wakamba, Wapokomo, Wataita, Wachaga, &c.), who are more strongly Hamitized and in many cases have adopted Masai customs. These peoples, from the Victoria Nyanza to the Zambezi, may conveniently be termed the “Eastern Bantu.”
Turning to the Congo basin in the south, the great Luba and Lunda peoples are found stretching nearly across the continent, the latter, from at any rate the end of the 16th century until the close of the 19th century, more or less united under a single ruler, styled Muata Yanvo. These seem to have been the most recent immigrants from the south-east, and to exhibit certain affinities with the Barotse on the upper Zambezi. Among the western Baluba, or Bashilange, a remarkable politico-religious revolution took place at a comparatively recent date, initiated by a secret society termed Bena Riamba or “Sons of Hemp,” and resulted in the subordination of the old fetishism to a cult of hemp, in accordance with which all hemp-smokers consider themselves brothers, and the duty of mutual hospitality, &c., is acknowledged. North of these, in the great bend of the Congo, are the Balolo, &c., the Balolo a nation of iron-workers; and westward, on the Kasai, the Bakuba, and a large number of tribes as yet imperfectly known. Farther west are the tribes of Angola, many of whom were included within the old “Congo empire,” of which the kingdom of Loango was an offshoot. North of the latter lies the Gabun, with a large number of small tribes dominated by the Fang who are recent arrivals from the Congo. Farther to the north are the Bali and other tribes of the Cameroon, among whom many primitive Negroid elements begin to appear. Eastward are the Zandeh peoples of the Welle district (primitive Negroids with a Hamitic or, more probably, Libyan strain), with whom the Dor tribe of Nilotes on their eastern border show certain affinities; while to the west along the coast are the Guinea Negroes of primitive type. Here, amidst great linguistic confusion, may be distinguished the tribes of Yoruba speech in the Niger delta and the east portion of the Slave Coast; those of Ew̒e speech, in the western portion of the latter; and those of Ga and Tshi speech, on the Gold Coast. Among the last two groups respectively may be mentioned the Dahomi and Ashanti. Similar tribes are found along the coast to the Bissagos Islands, though the introduction in Sierra Leone and Liberia of settlements of repatriated slaves from the American plantations has in those places modified the original ethnic distribution. Leaving the forest zone and entering the more open country there are, on the north from the Niger to the Nile, a number of Negroids strongly tinged with Libyan blood and professing the Mahommedan religion. Such are the Mandingo, the Songhai, the Fula, Hausa, Kanuri, Bagirmi, Kanembu, and the peoples of Wadai and Darfur; the few aborigines who persist, on the southern fringe of the Chad basin, are imperfectly known.
The island of Madagascar, belonging to the African continent, still remains for discussion. Here the ethnological conditions are peculiar. Before the French occupation the dominant people were the Hova, a Malayo-Indonesian people who must have come from the Malay Peninsula or the Peculiar conditions in Madagascar. adjacent islands. The date of their immigration has been the subject of a good deal of dispute, but it may be argued that their arrival must have taken place in early times, since Malagasy speech, which is the language of the island, is principally Malayo-Polynesian in origin, and contains no traces of Sanskrit. Such traces, introduced with Hinduism, are present in all the cultivated languages of Malaysia at the present day. The Hova occupy the table-land of Imerina and form the first of the three main groups into which the population of Madagascar may be divided. They are short, of an olive-yellow complexion and have straight or faintly wavy hair. On the east coast are the Malagasy, who in physical characteristics stand halfway between the Hova and the Sakalava, the last occupying the remaining portion of the island and displaying almost pure Negroid characteristics.
Though the Hova belong to a race naturally addicted to seafaring, the contrary is the case respecting the Negroid population, and the presence of the latter in the island has been explained by the supposition that they were imported by the Hova. Other authorities assign less antiquity to the Hova immigration and believe that they found the Negroid tribes already in occupation of the island.
As might be expected, the culture found in Madagascar contains two elements, Negroid and Malayo-Indonesian. The first of these two shows certain affinities with the culture characteristic of the western area of Africa, such as rectangular huts, clothing of bark and palm-fibre, fetishism, &c., but cattle-breeding is found as well as agriculture. However, the Negroid tribes are more and more adopting the customs and mode of life of the Hova, among whom are found pile-houses, the sarong, fadi or tabu applied to food, a non-African form of bellows, &c., all characteristic of their original home. The Hova, during the 19th century, embraced Christianity, but retain, nevertheless, many of their old animistic beliefs; their original social organization in three classes, andriana or nobles, hova or freemen, and andevo or slaves, has been modified by the French, who have abolished kingship and slavery. An Arab infusion is also to be noticed, especially on the north-east and south-east coasts.
It is impossible to give a complete list of the tribes inhabiting Africa, owing to the fact that the country is not fully explored. Even where the names of the tribes are known their ethnic relations are still a matter of uncertainty in many localities.
The following list, therefore, must be regarded as purely tentative, and liable to correction in the light of fuller information:—
|AFRICAN TRIBAL DISTRIBUTION|
|(North Africa, excluding Egypt)|
|Fula (West Sudan)|
|Tibbu (Central Sudan)|
|(East Sudan and Horn of Africa)|
|Abyssinians (with Negroid admixture)|
|West Sudan||Central Sudan||Eastern|
|Soninke||Birkit||(Akin to Nilotics, but|
|Susu||Kabbaga||Azandeh (Niam Niam)|
|West African Tribes
Tribes of Tshi and Ga
Tribes of Yoruba
|Landuman||Tribes of Ew̒e speech,||Kwa|
|Central Negroes||Eastern Negroes|
Nilotics with Affinity
with Zandeh tribes
|Nilotics with affinity|
|Dor (Bongo)|| Latuka|
|Bane||Ba-Tonga||Bantu of Recent|
|Kunabembe||Tribes of the Congo||Wa-Kamba|
|Fang (recent im-||Bend||Wa-Pokomo|
|Ba-Sundi||Tribes of the Congo|
Wa-Sukuma Wa-Sumbwa Wa-Nyanyembe Wa-Jui Wa-Kimbu Wa-Kanongo Wa-Wende Wa-Gunda Wa-Guru Wa-Galla
|TO SOUTHERN||Wa-Swahili (with Arab|
|Betsileo (slight Bantu admixture)||Menabe|
The origin and meaning of the name of the continent are discussed elsewhere (see Africa, Roman.) The word Africa was applied originally to the country in the immediate neighbourhood of Carthage, that part of the continent first known to the Romans, and it was subsequently extended with their increasing knowledge, till it came at last to include all that they knew of the continent. The Arabs still confine the name Ifrikia to the territory of Tunisia.
The valley of the lower Nile was the home in remotest antiquity of a civilized race. Egyptian culture had, however, remarkably little direct influence on the rest of the continent, a result due in large measure to the fact that Egypt is shut off landwards by immense deserts. If ancient Egypt and Ethiopia (q.v.) be excluded, Phoenician
and Greek colonization.the story of Africa is largely a record of the doings of its Asiatic and European conquerors and colonizers, Abyssinia being the only state which throughout historic times has maintained its independence. The countries bordering the Mediterranean were first exploited by the Phoenicians, whose earliest settlements were made before 1000 B.C. Carthage, founded about 800 B.C., speedily grew into a city without rival in the Mediterranean, and the Phoenicians, subduing the Berber tribes, who then as now formed the bulk of the population, became masters of all the habitable region of North Africa west of the Great Syrtis, and found in commerce a source of immense prosperity. Both Egyptians and Carthaginians made attempts to reach the unknown parts of the continent by sea. Herodotus relates that an expedition under Phoenician navigators, employed by Necho, king of Egypt, c. 600 B.C., circumnavigated Africa from the Red Sea to the Mediterranean, a voyage stated to have been accomplished in three years. Apart from the reported circumnavigation of the continent, the west coast was well known to the Phoenicians as far as Cape Nun, and c. 520 B.C. Hanno, a Carthaginian, explored the coast as far, perhaps, as the Bight of Benin, certainly as far as Sierra Leone. A vague knowledge of the Niger regions was also possessed by the Phoenicians.
Meantime the first European colonists had planted themselves in Africa. At the point where the continent approaches nearest the Greek islands, Greeks founded the city of Cyrene (c. 631 B.C.) Cyrenaica became a flourishing colony, though being hemmed in on all sides by absolute desert it had little or no influence on inner Africa. The Greeks, however, exerted a powerful influence in Egypt. To Alexander the Great the city of Alexandria owes its foundation (332 B.C.), and under the Hellenistic dynasty of the Ptolemies attempts were made to penetrate southward, and in this way was obtained some knowledge of Abyssinia. Neither Cyrenaica nor Egypt was a serious rival to the Carthaginians, but all three powers were eventually supplanted by the Romans. After centuries of rivalry for supremacy the struggle was ended by the fall of Carthage in 146 B.C. Within little more than a century from that date Egypt and Cyrene had become incorporated in the Roman empire. Under Rome the settled portions of the country were very prosperous, and a Latin strain was introduced into the land. Though Fezzan was occupied by them, the Romans elsewhere found the Sahara an impassable barrier. Nubia and Abyssinia were reached, but an expedition sent by the emperor Nero to discover the source of the Nile ended in failure. The utmost extent of geographical knowledge of the continent is shown in the writings of Ptolemy (2nd century A.D.), who knew of or guessed the existence of the great lake reservoirs of the Nile and had heard of the river Niger. Still Africa for the civilized world remained simply the countries bordering the Mediterranean. The continual struggle between Rome and the Berber tribes; the introduction of Christianity and the glories and sufferings of the Egyptian and African Churches; the invasion and conquest of the African provinces by the Vandals in the 5th century; the passing of the supreme power in the following century to the Byzantine empire—all these events are told fully elsewhere.
In the 7th century of the Christian era occurred an event destined to have a permanent influence on the whole continent. Invading first Egypt, an Arab host, fanatical believers in the new faith of Mahomet, conquered the whole country from the Red Sea to the Atlantic and carried the Crescent into Spain. Throughout North North Africa conquered by the Arabs.Africa Christianity well-nigh disappeared, save in Egypt (where the Coptic Church was suffered to exist), and Upper Nubia and Abyssinia, which were not subdued by the Moslems. In the 8th, 9th and 10th centuries the Arabs in Africa were numerically weak; they held the countries they had conquered by the sword only, but in the 11th century there was a great Arab immigration, resulting in a large absorption of Berber blood. Even before this the Berbers had very generally adopted the speech and religion of their conquerors. Arab influence and the Mahommedan religion thus became indelibly stamped on northern Africa. Together they spread southward across the Sahara. They also became firmly established along the eastern sea-board, where Arabs, Persians and Indians planted flourishing colonies, such as Mombasa, Malindi and Sofala, playing a rôle, maritime and commercial, analogous to that filled in earlier centuries by the Carthaginians on the northern sea-board. Of these eastern cities and states both Europe and the Arabs of North Africa were long ignorant.
The first Arab invaders had recognized the authority of the caliphs of Bagdad, and the Aghlabite dynasty—founded by Aghlab, one of Haroun al Raschid’s generals, at the close of the 8th century—ruled as vassals of the caliphate. However, early in the 10th century the Fatimite dynasty established itself in Egypt, where Cairo had been founded A.D. 968, and from there ruled as far west as the Atlantic. Later still arose other dynasties such as the Almoravides and Almohades. Appearance of the Turks. Eventually the Turks, who had conquered Constantinople in 1453, and had seized Egypt in 1517, established the regencies of Algeria, Tunisia and Tripoli (between 1519 and 1551), Morocco remaining an independent Arabized Berber state under the Sharifan dynasty, which had its beginnings at the end of the 13th century. Under the earlier dynasties Arabian or Moorish culture had attained a high degree of excellence, while the spirit of adventure and the proselytizing zeal of the followers of Islam led to a considerable extension of the knowledge of the continent. This was rendered more easy by their use of the camel (first introduced into Africa by the Persian conquerors of Egypt), which enabled the Arabs to traverse the desert. In this way Senegambia and the middle Niger regions fell under the influence of the Arabs and Berbers, but it was not until 1591 that Timbuktu—a city founded in the 11th century—became Moslem. That city had been reached in 1352 by the great Arab traveller Ibn Batuta, to whose journey to Mombasa and Quiloa (Kilwa) was due the first accurate knowledge of those flourishing Moslem cities on the east African sea-boards. Except along this sea-board, which was colonized directly from Asia, Arab progress southward was stopped by the broad belt of dense forest which, stretching almost across the continent somewhat south of 10° N., barred their advance as effectually as had the Sahara that of their predecessors, and cut them off from knowledge of the Guinea coast and of all Africa beyond. One of the regions which came latest under Arab control was that of Nubia, where a Christian civilization and state existed up to the 14th century.
For a time the Moslem conquests in South Europe had virtually made of the Mediterranean an Arab lake, but the expulsion in the 11th century of the Saracens from Sicily and southern Italy by the Normans was followed by descents of the conquerors on Tunisia and Tripoli. Somewhat later a busy trade with the African coast-lands, and especially with Egypt, was developed by Venice, Pisa, Genoa and other cities of North Italy. By the end of the 15th century Spain had completely thrown off the Moslem yoke, but even while the Moors were still in Granada, Portugal was strong enough to carry the war into Africa. In 1415 a Portuguese force captured the citadel of Ceuta on the Moorish coast. From that time onward Portugal repeatedly interfered in the affairs of Morocco, while Spain acquired many ports in Algeria and Tunisia. Portugal,Spain and
Portugal invade the Barbary States. however, suffered a crushing defeat in 1578 at al Kasr al Kebir, the Moors being led by Abd el Malek I. of the then recently established Sharifan dynasty. By that time the Spaniards had lost almost all their African possessions. The Barbary states, primarily from the example of the Moors expelled from Spain, degenerated into mere communities of pirates, and under Turkish influence civilization and commerce declined. The story of these states from the beginning of the 16th century to the third decade of the 19th century is largely made up of piratical exploits on the one hand and of ineffectual reprisals on the other. In Algiers, Tunis and other cities were thousands of Christian slaves.
But with the battle of Ceuta Africa had ceased to belong solely to the Mediterranean world. Among those who fought there was one. Prince Henry “the Navigator,” son of King John I., who was fired with the ambition to acquire for Portugal the unknown parts of Africa. Under his inspiration and direction was begun Discovery of the Guinea coast—
Rise of the slave trade.that series of voyages of exploration which resulted in the circumnavigation of Africa and the establishment of Portuguese sovereignty over large areas of the coast-lands. Cape Bojador was doubled in 1434, Cape Verde in 1445, and by 1480 the whole Guinea coast was known. In 1482 Diogo Cam or Cao discovered the mouth of the Congo, the Cape of Good Hope was doubled by Bartholomew Diaz in 1488, and in 1498 Vasco da Gama, after having rounded the Cape, sailed up the east coast, touched at Sofala and Malindi, and went thence to India. Over all the countries discovered by their navigators Portugal claimed sovereign rights, but these were not exercised in the extreme south of the continent. The Guinea coast, as the first discovered and the nearest to Europe, was first exploited. Numerous forts and trading stations were established, the earliest being Sao Jorge da Mina (Elmina), begun in 1482. The chief commodities dealt in were slaves, gold, ivory and spices. The discovery of America (1492) was followed by a great development of the slave trade, which, before the Portuguese era, had been an overland trade almost exclusively confined to Mahommedan Africa. The lucrative nature of this trade and the large quantities of alluvial gold obtained by the Portuguese drew other nations to the Guinea coast. English mariners went thither as early as 1553, and they were followed by Spaniards, Dutch, French, Danish and other adventurers. Much of Senegambia was made known as a result of quests during the 16th century for the “hills of gold” in Bambuk and the fabled wealth of Timbuktu, but the middle Niger was not reached. The supremacy along the coast passed in the 17th century from Portugal to Holland and from Holland in the 18th and 19th centuries to France and England. The whole coast from Senegal to Lagos was dotted with forts and “factories” of rival powers, and this international patchwork persists though all the hinterland has become either French or British territory.
Southward from the mouth of the Congo to the inhospitable region of Damaraland, the Portuguese, from 1491 onward, acquired influence over the Bantu-Negro inhabitants, and in the early part of the 16th century through their efforts Christianity was largely adopted in the native kingdom of Congo. An irruption of cannibals from the interior later in the same century broke the power of this semi-Christian state, and Portuguese activity was transferred to a great extent farther south, Sao Paulo de Loanda being founded in 1576. The sovereignty of Portugal over this coast region, except for the mouth of the Congo, has been once only challenged by a European power, and that was in 1640–1648, when the Dutch held the seaports.
Neglecting the comparatively poor and thinly inhabited regions of South Africa, the Portuguese no sooner discovered than they coveted the flourishing cities held by Arabized peoples between Sofala and Cape Guardafui. By 1520 all these Moslem sultanates had been seized by Portugal, Mozambique being chosen as the chief city of her The Portuguese in East Africa and Abyssinia.East African possessions. Nor was Portuguese activity confined to the coast-lands. The lower and middle Zambezi valley was explored (16th and 17th centuries), and here the Portuguese found semi-civilized Bantu-Negro tribes, who had been for many years in contact with the coast Arabs. Strenuous efforts were made to obtain possession of the country (modern Rhodesia) known to them as the kingdom or empire of Monomotapa, where gold had been worked by the natives from about the 12th century A.D., and whence the Arabs, whom the Portuguese dispossessed, were still obtaining supplies in the 16th century. Several expeditions were despatched inland from 1569 onward and considerable quantities of gold were obtained. Portugal’s hold on the interior, never very effective, weakened during the 17th century, and in the middle of the 18th century ceased with the abandonment of the forts in the Manica district.
At the period of her greatest power Portugal exercised a strong influence in Abyssinia also. In the ruler of Abyssinia (to whose dominions a Portuguese traveller had penetrated before Vasco da Gama’s memorable voyage) the Portuguese imagined they had found the legendary Christian king, Prester John, and when the complete overthrow of the native dynasty and the Christian religion was imminent by the victories of Mahommedan invaders, the exploits of a band of 400 Portuguese under Christopher da Gama during 1541–1543 turned the scale in favour of Abyssinia and had thus an enduring result on the future of North-East Africa. After da Gama’s time Portuguese Jesuits resorted to Abyssinia. While they failed in their efforts to convert the Abyssinians to Roman Catholicism they acquired an extensive knowledge of the country. Pedro Paez in 1615, and, ten years later, Jeronimo Lobo, both visited the sources of the Blue Nile. In 1663 the Portuguese, who had outstayed their welcome, were expelled from the Abyssinian dominions. At this time Portuguese influence on the Zanzibar coast was waning before the power of the Arabs of Muscat, and by 1730 no point on the east coast north of Cape Delgado was held by Portugal.
It has been seen that Portugal took no steps to acquire the southern part of the continent. To the Portuguese the Cape of Good Hope was simply a landmark on the road to India, and mariners of other nations who followed in their wake used Table Bay only as a convenient spot wherein to refit on their voyage to the East. English and Dutch at Table Bay—Cape Colony founded.By the beginning of the 17th century the bay was much resorted to for this purpose, chiefly by English and Dutch vessels. In 1620, with the object of forestalling the Dutch, two officers of the East India Company, on their own initiative, took possession of Table Bay in the name of King James, fearing otherwise that English ships would be “frustrated of watering but by license.” Their action was not approved in London and the proclamation they issued remained without effect. The Netherlands profited by the apathy of the English. On the advice of sailors who had been shipwrecked in Table Bay the Netherlands East India Company, in 1651, sent out a fleet of three small vessels under Jan van Riebeek which reached Table Bay on the 6th of April 1652, when, 164 years after its discovery, the first permanent white settlement was made in South Africa. The Portuguese, whose power in Africa was already waning, were not in a position to interfere with the Dutch plans, and England was content to seize the island of St Helena as her half-way house to the East. In its inception the settlement at the Cape was not intended to become an African colony, but was regarded as the most westerly outpost of the Dutch East Indies. Nevertheless, despite the paucity of ports and the absence of navigable rivers, the Dutch colonists, freed from any apprehension of European trouble by the friendship between Great Britain and Holland, and leavened by Huguenot blood, gradually spread northward, stamping their language, law and religion indelibly upon South Africa. This process, however, was exceedingly slow.
During the 18th century there is little to record in the history of Africa. The nations of Europe, engaged in the later half of the century in almost constant warfare, and struggling for supremacy in America and the East, to a large extent lost their interest in the continent. Only on the west coast was there keen rivalry, and here the motive Waning and revival of interest in Africa. was securance of trade rather than territorial acquisitions. In this century the slave trade reached its highest development, the trade in gold, ivory, gum and spices being small in comparison. In the interior of the continent—Portugal’s energy being expended—no interest was shown, the nations with establishments on the coast “taking no further notice of the inhabitants or their land than to obtain at the easiest rate what they procure with as little trouble as possible, or to carry them off for slaves to their plantations in America” (Encyclopaedia Britannica, 3rd ed., 1797). Even the scanty knowledge acquired by the ancients and the Arabs was in the main forgotten or disbelieved. It was the period when—
|Geographers, in Afric maps,|
|With savage pictures filled their gaps,|
|And o’er unhabitable downs|
|Placed elephants for want of towns.|
|(Poetry, a Rhapsody. By Jonathan Swift.)|
The prevailing ignorance may be gauged by the statement in the third edition of the Encyclopaedia Britannica that “the Gambia and Senegal rivers are only branches of the Niger.” But the closing years of the 18th century, which witnessed the partial awakening of the public conscience of Europe to the iniquities of the slave trade, were also notable for the revival of interest in inner Africa. A society, the African Association, was formed in London in 1788 for the exploration of the interior of the continent. The era of great discoveries had begun a little earlier in the famous journey (1770–1772) of James Bruce through Abyssinia and Sennar, during which he determined the course of the Blue Nile. But it was through the agents of the African Association that knowledge was gained of the Niger regions. The Niger itself was first reached by Mungo Park, who travelled by way of the Gambia, in 1795. Park, on a second journey in 1805, passed Timbuktu and descended the Niger to Bussa, where he lost his life, having just failed to solve the question as to where the river reached the ocean. (This problem was ultimately solved by Richard Lander and his brother in 1830.) The first scientific explorer of South-East Africa, Dr Francisco de Lacerda, a Portuguese, also lost his life in that country. Lacerda travelled up the Zambezi to Tete, going thence towards Lake Mweru, near which he died in 1798. The first recorded crossing of Africa was accomplished between the years 1802 and 1811 by two half-caste Portuguese traders, Pedro Baptista and A. José, who passed from Angola eastward to the Zambezi.
Although the Napoleonic wars distracted the attention of Europe from exploratory work in Africa, those wars nevertheless exercised great influence on the future of the continent, both in Egypt and South Africa. The occupation of Egypt (1798–1803) first by France and then by Great Britain resulted in an effort by Turkey to regain direct control Effects of the Napoleonic wars—Britain seizes the Cape. over that country, followed in 1811 by the establishment under Mehemet Ali of an almost independent state, and the extension of Egyptian rule over the eastern Sudan (from 1820 onward). In South Africa the struggle with Napoleon caused Great Britain to take possession of the Dutch settlements at the Cape, and in 1814 Cape Colony, which had been continuously occupied by British troops since 1806, was formally ceded to the British crown.
The close of the European conflicts with the battle of Waterloo was followed by vigorous efforts on the part of the British government to become better acquainted with Africa, and to substitute colonization and legitimate trade for the slave traffic, declared illegal for British subjects in 1807 and abolished by all other European powers by 1836. To West Africa Britain devoted much attention. The slave trade abolitionists had already, in 1788, formed a settlement at Sierra Leone, on the Guinea coast, for freed slaves, and from this establishment grew the colony of Sierra Leone, long notorious, by reason of its deadly climate, as “The White Man’s Grave.” Farther east the establishments on the Gold Coast began to take a part in the politics of the interior, and the first British mission to Kumasi, despatched in 1817, led to the assumption of a protectorate over the maritime tribes heretofore governed by the Ashanti.
An expedition sent in 1816 to explore the Congo from its mouth did not succeed in getting beyond the rapids which bar the way to the interior, but in the central Sudan much better results were obtained. In 1823 three English travellers, Walter Oudney, Dixon Denham and Hugh Clapperton, reached Lake Chad from Tripoli—the first white men to reach that lake. The partial exploration of Bornu and the Hausa states by Clapperton, which followed, revealed the existence of large and flourishing cities and a semi-civilized people in a region hitherto unknown. The discovery in 1830 of the mouth of the Niger by Clapperton’s servant Lander, already mentioned, had been preceded by the journeys of Major A. G. Laing (1826) and René Caillié (1827) to Timbuktu, and was followed (1832–1833) by the partial ascent of the Benue affluent of the Niger by Macgregor Laird. In 1841 a disastrous attempt was made to plant a white colony on the lower Niger, an expedition (largely philanthropic and antislavery in its inception) which ended in utter failure. Nevertheless from that time British traders remained on the lower Niger, their continued presence leading ultimately to the acquisition of political rights over the delta and the Hausa states by Great Britain. Another endeavour by the British government to open up commercial relations with the Niger countries resulted in the addition of a vast amount of information concerning the countries between Timbuktu and Lake Chad, owing to the labours of Heinrich Barth (1850–1855), originally a subordinate, but the only surviving member of the expedition sent out.
Meantime considerable changes had been made in other parts of the continent, the most notable being—the occupation of Algiers by France in 1830, an end being thereby put to the piratical proceedings of the Barbary states; the continued expansion southward of Egyptian authority with the consequent additions to the knowledge of the Nile; and the establishment of independent states (Orange Free State and the Transvaal) by Dutch farmers (Boers) dissatisfied with British rule in Cape Colony. Natal, so named by Vasco da Gama, had been made a British colony (1843), the attempt of the Boers to acquire it being frustrated. The city of Zanzibar, on the island of that name, founded in 1832 by Seyyid Said of Muscat, rapidly attained importance, and Arabs began to penetrate to the great lakes of East Africa, concerning which little more was known (and less believed) than in the time of Ptolemy. Accounts of a vast inland sea, and the discovery in 1848–1840, by the missionaries Ludwig Krapf and J. Rebmann, of the snow-clad mountains of Kilimanjaro and Kenya, stimulated in Europe the desire for further knowledge.
At this period, the middle of the 19th century, Protestant missions were carrying on active propaganda on the Guinea coast, in South Africa and in the Zanzibar dominions. Their work, largely beneficent, was being conducted in regions and among peoples little known, and in many instances missionaries turned The era of great explorers.explorers and became pioneers of trade and empire. One of the first to attempt to fill up the remaining blank spaces in the map was David Livingstone, who had been engaged since 1840 in missionary work north of the Orange. In 1849 Livingstone crossed the Kalahari Desert from south to north and reached Lake Ngami, and between 1851 and 1856 he traversed the continent from west to east, making known the great waterways of the upper Zambezi. During these journeyings Livingstone discovered, November 1855, the famous Victoria Falls, so named after the queen of England. In 1858–1864 the lower Zambezi, the Shiré and Lake Nyasa were explored by Livingstone, Nyasa having been first reached by the confidential slave of Antonio da Silva Porto, a Portuguese trader established at Bihe in Angola, who crossed Africa during 1853–1856 from Benguella to the mouth of the Rovuma. While Livingstone circumnavigated Nyasa, the more northerly lake, Tanganyika, had been visited (1858) by Richard Burton and J. H. Speke, and the last named had sighted Victoria Nyanza. Returning to East Africa with J. A. Grant, Speke reached, in 1862, the river which flowed from Victoria Nyanza, and following it (in the main) down to Egypt, had the distinction of being the first man to read the riddle of the Nile. In 1864 another Nile explorer, Samuel Baker, discovered the Albert Nyanza, the chief western reservoir of the river. In 1866 Livingstone began his last great journey, in which he made known Lakes Mweru and Bangweulu and discovered the Lualaba (the upper part of the Congo), but died (1873) before he had been able to demonstrate its ultimate course, believing indeed that the Lualaba belonged to the Nile system. Livingstone’s lonely death in the heart of Africa evoked a keener desire than ever to complete the work he left undone. H. M. Stanley, who had in 1871 succeeded in finding and succouring Livingstone, started again for Zanzibar in 1874, and in the most memorable of all exploring expeditions in Africa circumnavigated Victoria Nyanza and Tanganyika, and, striking farther inland to the Lualaba, followed that river down to the Atlantic Ocean—reached in August 1877—and proved it to be the Congo. Stanley had been preceded, in 1874, at Nyangwe, Livingstone’s farthest point on the Lualaba, by Lovett Cameron, who was, however, unable farther to explore its course, making his way to the west coast by a route south of the Congo.
While the great mystery of Central Africa was being solved explorers were also active in other parts of the continent. Southern Morocco, the Sahara and the Sudan were traversed in many directions between 1860 and 1875 by Gerhard Rohlfs, Georg Schweinfurth and Gustav Nachtigal. These travellers not only added considerably to geographical knowledge, but obtained invaluable information concerning the people, languages and natural history of the countries in which they sojourned. Among the discoveries of Schweinfurth was one that confirmed the Greek legends of the existence beyond Egypt of a pygmy race. But the first discoverer of the dwarf races of Central Africa was Paul du Chaillu, who found them in the Ogowé district of the west coast in 1865, five years before Schweinfurth’s first meeting with the Pygmies; du Chaillu having previously, as the result of journeys in the Gabun country between 1855 and 1859, made popular in Europe the knowledge of the existence of the gorilla, perhaps the gigantic ape seen by Hanno the Carthaginian, and whose existence, up to the middle of the 19th century, was thought to be as legendary as that of the Pygmies of Aristotle.
In South Africa the filling up of the map also proceeded apace. The finding, in 1869, of rich diamond fields in the valley of the Vaal river, near its confluence with the Orange, caused a rush of emigrants to that district, and led to conflicts between the Dutch and British authorities and the extension of British authority northward. In 1871 the ruins of the great Zimbabwe in Mashonaland, the chief fortress and distributing centre of the race which in medieval times worked the goldfields of South-East Africa, were explored by Karl Mauch. In the following year F. C. Selous began his journeys over South Central Africa, which continued for more than twenty years and extended over every part of Mashonaland and Matabeleland. (F. R. C.)
V. Partition Among European Powers
In the last quarter of the 19th century the map of Africa was transformed. After the discovery of the Congo the story of exploration takes second place; the continent becomes the theatre of European expansion. Lines of partition, drawn often through trackless wildernesses, marked out the possessions of Germany, France, Great Britain and other powers. Railways penetrated the interior, vast areas were opened up to civilized occupation, and from ancient Egypt to the Zambezi the continent was startled into new life.
Before 1875 the only powers with any considerable interest in Africa were Britain, Portugal and France. Between 1815 and 1850, as has been shown above, the British government devoted much energy, not always informed by knowledge, to western and southern Africa. In both directions Great Britain had met with much discouragement; on the west coast, disease, death, decaying trade and useless conflicts with savage foes had been the normal experience; in the south recalcitrant Boers and hostile Kaffirs caused almost endless trouble. The visions once entertained of vigorous negro communities at once civilized and Christian faded away; to the hot fit of philanthropy succeeded the cold fit of indifference and a disinclination to bear the burden of empire. The low-water mark of British interest in South Africa was reached in 1854 when independence was forced on the Orange River Boers, while in 1865 the mind of the nation was fairly reflected by the unanimous resolution of a representative House of Commons committee: “that all further extension of territory or assumption of government, or new treaty offering any protection to native tribes, would be inexpedient.” For nearly twenty years the spirit of that resolution paralysed British action in Africa, although many circumstances—the absence of any serious European rival, the inevitable border disputes with uncivilized races, and the activity of missionary and trader—conspired to make British influence dominant in large areas of the continent over which the government exercised no definite authority. The freedom with which blood and treasure were spent to enforce respect for the British flag or to succour British subjects in distress, as in the Abyssinian campaign of 1867–68 and the Ashanti war of 1873, tended further to enhance the reputation of Great Britain among African races, while, as an inevitable result of the possession of India, British officials exercised considerable power at the court of Zanzibar, which indeed owed its separate existence to a decision of Lord Canning, the governor-general of India, in 1861 recognizing the division of the Arabian and African dominions of the imam of Muscat.
It has been said that Great Britain was without serious rival. On the Gold Coast she had bought the Danish forts in 1850 and acquired the Dutch, 1871–1872, in exchange for establishments in Sumatra. But Portugal still held, both in the east and west of Africa, considerable stretches of the tropical coast-lands, and it was in 1875 that she obtained, as a result of the arbitration of Marshal MacMahon, possession of the whole of Delagoa Bay, to the southern part of which England also laid claim by virtue of a treaty of cession concluded with native chiefs in 1823. The only other European power which at the period under consideration had considerable possessions in Africa was France. Besides Algeria, France had settlements on the Senegal, where in 1854 the appointment of General Faidherbe as governor marked the beginning of a policy of expansion; she had also various posts on the upper Guinea coast, had taken the estuary of the Gabun as a station for her navy, and had acquired (1862) Obok at the southern entrance to the Red Sea.
In North Africa the Turks had (in 1835) assumed direct control of Tripoli, while Morocco had fallen into a state of decay though retaining its independence. The most remarkable change was in Egypt, where the Khedive Ismail had introduced a somewhat fantastic imitation of European civilization. In addition Ismail had conquered Darfur, annexed Harrar and the Somali ports on the Gulf of Aden, was extending his power southward to the equatorial lakes, and even contemplated reaching the Indian Ocean. The Suez Canal, opened in 1869, had a great influence on the future of Africa, as it again made Egypt the highway to the East, to the detriment of the Cape route.
Any estimate of the area of African territory held by European
nations in 1875 is necessarily but approximate, and varies chiefly
as the compiler of statistics rejects or accepts the
vague claims of Portugal to sovereignty over the
hinterland of her coast possessions. At that periodThe division of the continent
in 1875. other European nations—with the occasional exception of Great Britain—were indifferent to Portugal’s pretensions, and her estimate of her African empire as covering over 700,000 sq. m. was not challenged. But the area under effective control of Portugal at that time did not exceed 40,000 sq. m. Great Britain then held some 250,000 sq. m., France about 170,000 sq. m. and Spain 1000 sq. m. The area of the independent Dutch republics (the Transvaal and Orange Free State) was some 150,000 sq. m., so that the total area of Africa ruled by Europeans did not exceed 1,271,000 sq. m.; roughly one-tenth of the continent. This estimate, as it admits the full extent of Portuguese claims and does not include Madagascar, in reality considerably overstates the case.
Egypt and the Egyptian Sudan, Tunisia and Tripoli were subject in differing ways to the overlordship of the sultan of Turkey, and with these may be ranked, in the scale of organized governments, the three principal independent states, Morocco, Abyssinia and Zanzibar, as also the negro republic of Liberia. There remained, apart from the Sahara, roughly one half of Africa, lying mostly within the tropics, inhabited by a multitude of tribes and peoples living under various forms of government and subject to frequent changes in respect of political organization. In this region were the negro states of Ashanti, Dahomey and Benin on the west coast, the Mahommedan sultanates of the central Sudan, and a number of negro kingdoms in the east central and south central regions. Of these Uganda on the north-west shores of Victoria Nyanza, Cazembe and Muata Hianvo (or Yanvo) may be mentioned. The two last-named kingdoms occupied respectively the south-eastern and south-western parts of the Congo basin. In all this vast region the Negro and Negro-Bantu races predominated, for the most part untouched by Mahommedanism or Christian influences. They lacked political cohesion, and possessed neither the means nor the inclination to extend their influence beyond their own borders. The exploitation of Africa continued to be entirely the work of alien races.
The causes which led to the partition of Africa may now be
considered. They are to be found in the economic and political
state of western Europe at the time. Germany,
strong and united as the result of the Franco-Prussian
War of 1870, was seeking new outlets for her energies—new
Causes which led
to partition. markets for her growing industries, and with the markets, colonies. Yet the idea of colonial expansion was of slow growth in Germany, and when Prince Bismarck at length acted Africa was the only field left to exploit, South America being protected from interference by the known determination of the United States to enforce the Monroe Doctrine, while Great Britain, France, the Netherlands, Portugal and Spain already held most of the other regions of the world where colonization was possible. For different reasons the war of 1870 was also the starting-point for France in the building up of a new colonial empire. In her endeavour to regain the position lost in that war France had to look beyond Europe. To the two causes mentioned must be added others. Great Britain and Portugal, when they found their interests threatened, bestirred themselves, while Italy also conceived it necessary to become an African power. Great Britain awoke to the need for action too late to secure predominance in all the regions where formerly hers was the only European influence. She had to contend not only with the economic forces which urged her rivals to action, but had also to combat the jealous opposition of almost every European nation to the further growth of British power. Italy alone acted throughout in cordial co-operation with Great Britain.
It was not, however, the action of any of the great powers of Europe which precipitated the struggle. This was brought about by the ambitious projects of Leopold II, king of the Belgians. The discoveries of Livingstone, Stanley and others had aroused especial interest among two classes of men in western Europe, one the manufacturing and trading class, which saw in Central Africa possibilities of commercial development, the other the philanthropic and missionary class, which beheld in the newly discovered lands millions of savages to Christianize and civilize. The possibility of utilizing both these classes in the creation of a vast state, of which he should be the chief, formed itself in the mind of Leopold II. even before Stanley had navigated the Congo. The king’s action was immediate; it proved successful; but no sooner was the nature of his project understood in Europe than it provoked the rivalry of France and Germany, and thus the international struggle was begun.
At this point it is expedient, in the light of subsequent events, to set forth the designs then entertained by the European powers that participated in the struggle for Africa. Portugal was striving to retain as large a share as possible of her shadowy empire, and particularly to establish her Conflicting ambitions
European powers.claims to the Zambezi region, so as to secure a belt of territory across Africa from Mozambique to Angola. Great Britain, once aroused to the imminence of danger, put forth vigorous efforts in East Africa and on the Niger, but her most ambitious dream was the establishment of an unbroken line of British possessions and spheres of influence from south to north of the continent, from Cape Colony to Egypt. Germany’s ambition can be easily described. It was to secure as much as possible, so as to make up for lost opportunities. Italy coveted Tripoli, but that province could not be seized without risking war. For the rest Italy’s territorial ambitions were confined to North-East Africa, where she hoped to acquire a dominating, influence over Abyssinia. French ambitions, apart from Madagascar, were confined to the northern and central portions of the continent. To extend her possessions on the Mediterranean littoral, and to connect them with her colonies in West Africa, the western Sudan, and on the Congo, by establishing her influence over the vast intermediate regions, was France’s first ambition. But the defeat of the Italians in Abyssinia and the impending downfall of the khalifa’s power in the valley of the upper Nile suggested a still more daring project to the French government—none other than the establishment of French influence over a broad belt of territory stretching across the continent from west to east, from Senegal on the Atlantic coast to the Gulf of Aden. The fact that France possessed a small part of the Red Sea coast gave point to this design. But these conflicting ambitions could not all be realized and Germany succeeded in preventing Great Britain obtaining a continuous band of British territory from south to north,while Great Britain, by excluding France from the upper Nile valley, dispelled the French dream of an empire from west to east.
King Leopold’s ambitions have already been indicated. The part of the continent to which from the first he directed his energies was the equatorial region. In September 1876 he took what may be described as the first definite step in the modern partition of the continent. He summoned to a conference at Brussels representatives of Great Britain, Belgium, France, Germany, Austria-Hungary, Italy and Russia, to deliberate on the best methods to be adopted for the exploration and civilization of Africa, and the opening up of the interior of the continent to commerce and industry. The conference was entirely unofficial. The delegates who attended neither represented nor pledged their respective governments. Their deliberations lasted three days and resulted in the foundation of “The International African Association,” with its headquarters at Brussels. It was further resolved to establish national committees in the various countries represented, which should collect funds and appoint delegates to the International Association. The central idea appears to have been to put the exploration and development of Africa upon an international footing. But it quickly became apparent that this was an unattainable ideal. The national committees were soon working independently of the International Association, and the Association itself passed through a succession of stages until it became purely Belgian in character, and at last developed into the Congo Free State, under the personal sovereignty of King Leopold. At first the Association devoted itself to sending expeditions to the great central lakes from the east coast; but failure, more or less complete attended its efforts in this direction, and it was not until the return of Stanley, in January 1878, from his great journey down the Congo, that its ruling spirit, King Leopold, definitely turned his thoughts towards the Congo. In June of that year, Stanley visited the king at Brussels, and in the following November a private conference was held, and a committee was appointed for the investigation of the upper Congo.
Stanley’s remarkable discovery had stirred ambition in other capitals than Brussels. France had always taken a keen interest in West Africa, and in the years 1875 to 1878 Savorgnan de Brazza had carried out a successful exploration of the Ogowe river to the south of the Gabun. De Brazza The struggle for the Congo. determined that the Ogowe did not offer that great waterway into the interior of which he was in search, and he returned to Europe without having heard of the discoveries of Stanley farther south. Naturally, however, Stanley’s discoveries were keenly followed in France. In Portugal, too, the discovery of the Congo, with its magnificent unbroken waterway of more than a thousand miles into the heart of the continent, served to revive the languid energies of the Portuguese, who promptly began to furbish up claims whose age was in inverse ratio to their validity. Claims, annexations and occupations were in the air, and when in January 1879 Stanley left Europe as the accredited agent of King Leopold and the Congo committee, the strictest secrecy was observed as to his real aims and intentions. The expedition was, it was alleged, proceeding up the Congo to assist the Belgian expedition which had entered from the east coast, and Stanley himself went first to Zanzibar. But in August 1879 Stanley found himself again at Banana Point, at the mouth of the Congo, with, as he himself has written, “the novel mission of sowing along its banks civilized settlements to peacefully conquer and subdue it, to remould it in harmony with modern ideas into national states, within whose limits the European merchant shall go hand in hand with the dark African trader, and justice and law and order shall prevail, and murder and lawlessness and the cruel barter of slaves shall be overcome.” The irony of human aspirations was never perhaps more plainly demonstrated than in the contrast between the ideal thus set before themselves by those who employed Stanley, and the actual results of their intervention in Africa. Stanley founded his first station at Vivi, between the mouth of the Congo and the rapids that obstruct its course where it breaks over the western edge of the central continental plateau. Above the rapids he established a station on Stanley Pool and named it Leopoldville, founding other stations on the main stream in the direction of the falls that bear his name.
Meanwhile de Brazza was far from idle. He had returned to Africa at the beginning of 1880, and while the agents of King Leopold were making treaties and founding stations along the southern bank of the river, de Brazza and other French agents were equally busy on the northern bank. De Brazza was sent out to Africa by the French committee of the International African Association, which provided him with the funds for the expedition. His avowed object was to explore the region between the Gabun and Lake Chad. But his real object was to anticipate Stanley on the Congo. The international character of the association founded by King Leopold was never more than a polite fiction, and the rivalry between the French and the Belgians on the Congo was soon open, if not avowed. In October 1880 de Brazza made a solemn treaty with a chief on the north bank of the Congo, who claimed that his authority extended over a large area, including territory on the southern bank of the river. As soon as this chief had accepted French protection, de Brazza crossed over to the south of the river, and founded a station close to the present site of Leopoldville. The discovery by Stanley of the French station annoyed King Leopold’s agent, and he promptly challenged the rights of the chief who purported to have placed the country under French protection, and himself founded a Belgian station close to the site selected by de Brazza. In the result, the French station was withdrawn to the northern side of Stanley Pool, where it is now known as Brazzaville.
The activity of French and Belgian agents on the Congo had not passed unnoticed in Lisbon, and the Portuguese government saw that no time was to be lost if the claims it had never ceased to put forward on the west coast were not to go by default. At varying periods during the 19th century Portugal had put forward claims to the whole of the West African coast, between 5° 12′ and 8° south. North of the Congo mouth she claimed the territories of Kabinda and Molemba, alleging that they had been in her possession since 1484. Great Britain had never, however, admitted this claim, and south of the Congo had declined to recognize Portuguese possessions as extending north of Ambriz. In 1856 orders were given to British cruisers to prevent by force any attempt to extend Portuguese dominion north of that place. But the Portuguese had been persistent in urging their claims, and in 1882 negotiations were again opened with the British government for recognition of Portuguese rights over both banks of the Congo on the coast, and for some distance inland. Into the details of the negotiations, which were conducted for Great Britain by the 2nd Earl Granville, who was then secretary for foreign affairs, it is unnecessary to enter; they resulted in the signing on the 26th of February 1884 of a treaty, by which Great Britain recognized the sovereignty of the king of Portugal “over that part of the west coast of Africa, situated between 8° and 5° 12′ south latitude,” and inland as far as Noki, on the south bank of the Congo, below Vivi. The navigation of the Congo was to be controlled by an Anglo-Portuguese commission. The publication of this treaty evoked immediate protests, not only on the continent but in Great Britain. In face of the disapproval aroused by the treaty, Lord Granville found himself unable to ratify it. The protests had not been confined to France and the king of the Belgians. Germany had not yet acquired formal footing in Africa, but she was crouching for the spring prior to taking her part in the scramble, and Prince Bismarck had expressed, in vigorous language, the objections entertained by Germany to the Anglo-Portuguese treaty.
For some time before 1884 there had been growing up a general conviction that it would be desirable for the powers who were interesting themselves in Africa to come to some agreement as to “the rules of the game,” and to define their respective interests so far as that was practicable. Lord Granville’s ill-fated treaty brought this sentiment to a head, and it was agreed to hold an international conference on African affairs. But before discussing the Berlin conference of 1884–1885, it will be well to see what was the position, on the eve of the conference, in other parts of the African continent. In the southern section of Africa, south of the Zambezi, important events had been happening. In 1876 Great Britain had concluded an agreement British influence consolidated in South Africa. with the Orange Free State for an adjustment of frontiers, the result of which was to leave the Kimberley diamond fields in British territory, in exchange for a payment of £90,000 to the Orange Free State. On the 12th of April 1877 Sir Theophilus Shepstone had issued a proclamation declaring the Transvaal—the South African Republic, as it was officially designated—to be British territory (see Transvaal.) In December 1880 war broke out and lasted until March 1881, when a treaty of peace was signed. This treaty of peace was followed by a convention, signed in August of the same year, under which complete self-government was guaranteed to the inhabitants of the Transvaal, subject to the suzerainty of Great Britain, upon certain terms and conditions and subject to certain reservations and limitations. No sooner was the convention signed than it became the object of the Boers to obtain a modification of the conditions and limitations imposed, and in February 1884 a fresh convention was signed, amending the convention of 1881. Article IV. of the new convention provided that “The South African Republic will conclude no treaty or engagement with any state or nation other than the Orange Free State, nor with any native tribe to the eastward or westward of the Republic, until the same has been approved by Her Majesty the Queen.” The precise effect of the two conventions has been the occasion for interminable discussions, but as the subject is now one of merely academic interest, it is sufficient to say that when the Berlin conference held its first meeting in 1884 the Transvaal was practically independent, so far as its internal administration was concerned, while its foreign relations were subject to the control just quoted.
But although the Transvaal had thus, between the years 1875 and 1884, become and ceased to be British territory, British influence in other parts of Africa south of the Zambezi had been steadily extended. To the west of the Orange Free State, Griqualand West was annexed to the Cape in 1880, while to the east the territories beyond the Kei river were included in Cape Colony between 1877 and 1884, so that in the latter year, with the exception of Pondoland, the whole of South-East Africa was in one form or another under British control. North of Natal, Zululand was not actually annexed until 1887, although since 1879, when the military power of the Zulus was broken up, British influence had been admittedly supreme. In December 1884 St Lucia Bay—upon which Germany was casting covetous eyes—had been taken possession of in virtue of its cession to Great Britain by the Zulu king in 1843, and three years later an agreement of non-cession to foreign powers made by Great Britain with the regent and paramount chief of Tongaland completed the chain of British possessions on the coast of South Africa, from the mouth of the Orange river on the west to Kosi Bay and the Portuguese frontier on the east. In the interior of South Africa the year 1884 witnessed the beginning of that final stage of the British advance towards the north which was to extend British influence from the Cape to the southern shores of Lake Tanganyika. The activity of the Germans on the west, and of the Boer republic on the east, had brought home to both the imperial and colonial authorities the impossibility of relying on vague traditional claims. In May 1884 treaties were made with native chiefs by which the whole of the country north of Cape Colony, west of the Transvaal, south of 22° S. and east of 20° E., was placed under British protection, though a protectorate was not formally declared until the following January.
Meanwhile some very interesting events had been taking place on the west coast, north of the Orange river and south of the Portuguese province of Mossamedes. It must be sufficient here to touch very briefly on the events that preceded the foundation of the colony of German South-West Africa. For many years before 1884 German missionaries had settled among the Damaras (Herero) and Namaquas, often combining small trading operations with their missionary work. From time to time trouble arose between the missionaries and the native chiefs, and appeals Germany enters the field. were made to the German government for protection. The German government in its turn begged the British government to say whether it assumed responsibility for the protection of Europeans in Damaraland and Namaqualand. The position of the British government was intelligible, if not very intelligent. It did not desire to see any other European power in these countries, and it did not want to assume the responsibility and incur the expense of protecting the few Europeans settled there. Sir Bartle Frere, when governor of the Cape (1877–1880), had foreseen that this attitude portended trouble, and had urged that the whole of the unoccupied coast-line, up to the Portuguese frontier, should be declared under British protection. But he preached to deaf ears, and it was as something of a concession to him that in March 1878 the British flag was hoisted at Walfish Bay, and a small part of the adjacent land declared to be British. The fact appears to be that British statesmen failed to understand the change that had come over Germany. They believed that Prince Bismarck would never give his sanction to the creation of a colonial empire, and, to the German inquiries as to what rights Great Britain claimed in Damaraland and Namaqualand, procrastinating replies were sent. Meanwhile the various colonial societies established in Germany had effected a revolution in public opinion, and, more important still, they had convinced the great chancellor. Accordingly when, in November 1882, F. A. E. Lüderitz, a Bremen merchant, informed the German government of his intention to establish a factory on the coast between the Orange river and the Little Fish river, and asked if he might rely on the protection of his government in case of need, he met with no discouragement from Prince Bismarck. In February 1883 the German ambassador in London informed Lord Granville of Lüderitz’s design, and asked “whether Her Majesty’s government exercise any authority in that locality.” It was intimated that if Her Majesty’s government did not, the German government would extend to Lüderitz’s factory “the same measure of protection which they give to their subjects in remote parts of the world, but without having the least design to establish any footing in South Africa.” An inconclusive reply was sent, and on the 9th of April Lüderitz’s agent landed at Angra Pequeña, and after a short delay concluded a treaty with the local chief, by which some 215 square miles around Angra Pequeña were ceded to Lüderitz. In England and at the Cape irritation at the news was mingled with incredulity, and it was fully anticipated that Lüderitz would be disavowed by his government. But for this belief it can scarcely be doubted that the rest of the unoccupied coast-line would have been promptly declared under British protection. Still Prince Bismarck was slow to act. In November the German ambassador again inquired if Great Britain made any claim over this coast, and Lord Granville replied that Her Majesty exercised sovereignty only over certain parts of the coast, as at Walfish Bay, and suggested that arrangements might be made by which Germany might assist in the settlement of Angra Pequeña. By this time Lüderitz had extended his acquisitions southwards to the Orange river, which had been declared by the British government to be the northern frontier of Cape Colony. Both at the Cape and in England it was now realized that Germany had broken away from her former purely continental policy, and, when too late, the Cape parliament showed great eagerness to acquire the territory which had lain so long at its very doors, to be had for the taking. It is not necessary to follow the course of the subsequent negotiations. On the 15th of August 1884 an official note was addressed by the German consul at Capetown to the high commissioner, intimating that the German emperor had by proclamation taken “the territory belonging to Mr A. Lüderitz on the west coast of Africa under the direct protection of His Majesty.” This proclamation covered the coast-line from the north bank of the Orange river to 26° S. latitude, and 20 geographical miles inland, including “the islands belonging thereto by the law of nations.” On the 8th of September 1884 the German government intimated to Her Majesty’s government “that the west coast of Africa from 26° S. latitude to Cape Frio, excepting Walfish Bay, had been placed under the protection of the German emperor.” Thus, before the end of the year 1884, the foundations of Germany’s colonial empire had been laid in South-West Africa.
In April of that year Prince Bismarck intimated to the British government, through the German charge d’affaires in London, that “the imperial consul-general, Dr Nachtigal, has been commissioned by my government to visit the west coast of Africa in the course of the next few months, Nachtigal’s mission to West Africa. in order to complete the information now in the possession of the Foreign Office at Berlin, on the state of German commerce on that coast. With this object Dr Nachtigal will shortly embark at Lisbon, on board the gunboat ‘Möwe.’ He will put himself into communication with the authorities in the British possessions on the said coast, and is authorized to conduct, on behalf of the imperial government, negotiations connected with certain questions. I venture,” the official communication proceeds, “in accordance with my instructions, to beg your excellency to be so good as to cause the authorities in the British possessions in West Africa to be furnished with suitable recommendations.” Although at the date of this communication it must have been apparent, from what was happening in South Africa, that Germany was prepared to enter on a policy of colonial expansion, and although the wording of the letter was studiously vague, it does not seem to have occurred to the British government that the real object of Gustav Nachtigal’s journey was to make other annexations on the west coast. Yet such was indeed his mission. German traders and missionaries had been particularly active of late years on the coast of the Gulf of Guinea. German factories were dotted all along the coast in districts under British protection, under French protection and under the definite protection of no European power at all. It was to these latter places that Nachtigal turned his attention. The net result of his operations was that on the 5th of July 1884 a treaty was signed with the king of Togo, placing his country under German protection, and that just one week later a German protectorate was proclaimed over the Cameroon district. Before either of these events had occurred Great Britain had become alive to the fact that she could no longer dally with the subject, if she desired to consolidate her possessions in West Africa. The British government had again and again refused to accord native chiefs the protection they demanded. The Cameroon chiefs had several times asked for British protection, and always in vain. But at last it became apparent, even to the official mind, that rapid changes were being effected in Africa, and on the 16th of May Edward Hyde Hewett, British consul, received instructions to return to the west coast and to make arrangements for extending British protection over certain regions. He arrived too late to save either Togoland or Cameroon, in the latter case arriving five days after King Bell and the other chiefs on the river had signed treaties with Nachtigal. But the British consul was in time to secure the delta of the river Niger and the Oil Rivers District, extending from Rio del Rey to the Lagos frontier, where for a long period British traders had held almost a monopoly of the trade.
Meanwhile France, too, had been busy treaty-making. While the British government still remained under the spell of the fatal resolution of 1865, the French government was strenuously endeavouring to extend France’s influence in West Africa, in the countries lying behind the coast-line.French and British rivalry in West Africa. During the year 1884 no fewer than forty-two treaties were concluded with native chiefs, an even larger number having been concluded in the previous twelve months. In this fashion France was pushing on towards Timbuktu, in steady pursuance of the policy which resulted in surrounding all the old British possessions in West Africa with a continuous band of French territory. There was, however, one region on the west coast where, notwithstanding the lethargy of the British government, British interests were being vigorously pushed, protected and consolidated. This was on the lower Niger, and the leading spirit in the enterprise was Mr Goldie Taubman (afterwards Sir George Taubman Goldie). In 1877 Sir George Goldie visited the Niger and conceived the idea of establishing a settled government in that region. Through his efforts the various trading firms on the lower Niger formed themselves in 1879 into the “United African Company,” and the foundations were laid of something like settled administration. An application was made to the British government for a charter in 1881, and the capital of the company increased to a million sterling. Henceforth the company was known as the “National African Company,” and it was acknowledged that its object was not only to develop the trade of the lower Niger, but to extend its operations to the middle reaches of the river, and to open up direct relations with the great Fula empire of Sokoto and the smaller states associated with Sokoto under a somewhat loosely defined suzerainty. The great development of trade which followed the combination of British interests carried out under Goldie’s skilful guidance did not pass unnoticed in France, and, encouraged by Gambetta, French traders made a bold bid for a position on the river. Two French companies, with ample capital, were formed, and various stations were established on the lower Niger. Goldie realized at once the seriousness of the situation, and lost no time in declaring commercial war on the newcomers. His bold tactics were entirely successful, and a few days before the meeting of the Berlin conference he had the satisfaction of announcing that he had bought out the whole of the French interests on the river, and that Great Britain alone possessed any interests on the lower Niger.
To complete the survey of the political situation in Africa at the time the plenipotentiaries met at Berlin, it is necessary to refer briefly to the course of events in North and East Africa since 1875. In 1881 a French army entered Tunisia, and compelled the bey to sign a treaty placing The position in Tunisia and Egypt.that country under French protection. The sultan of Turkey formally protested against this invasion of Ottoman rights, but the great powers took no action, and France was left in undisturbed possession of her newly acquired territory. In Egypt the extravagance of Ismail Pasha had led to the establishment in 1879, in the interests of European bondholders, of a Dual Control exercised by France and Great Britain. France had, however, in 1882 refused to take part in the suppression of a revolt under Arabi Pasha, which England accomplished unaided. As a consequence the Dual Control had been abolished in January 1883, since when Great Britain, with an army quartered in the country, had assumed a predominant position in Egyptian affairs (see Egypt.) In East Africa, north of the Portuguese possessions, where the sultan of Zanzibar was the most considerable native potentate, Germany was secretly preparing the foundations of her present colony of German East Africa. But no overt act had warned Europe of what was impending. The story of the foundation of German East Africa is one of the romances of the continent. Early in 1884 the Society for German Colonization was founded, with the avowed object of furthering the newly awakened colonial aspirations of the German people. It was a society inspired and controlled by young men, and on the 4th of November 1884, eleven days before the conference assembled at Berlin, three young Germans arrived as deck passengers at Zanzibar. They were disguised as mechanics, but were in fact Dr Karl Peters, the president of the Colonization Society, Joachim Count Pfeil, and Dr Juhlke, and their stock-in-trade consisted of a number of German flags and a supply of blank treaty forms. They proposed to land on the mainland opposite Zanzibar, and to conclude treaties in the back country with native chiefs placing their territories under German protection. The The German flag raised in East Africa. enterprise was frowned upon by the German government; but, encouraged by German residents at Zanzibar, the three young pioneers crossed to the mainland, and on the 19th of November, while the diplomatists assembled at Berlin were solemnly discussing the rules which were to govern the game of partition, the first “treaty” was signed at Mbuzini, and the German flag raised for the first time in East Africa.
Italy had also obtained a footing on the African continent before the meeting of the Berlin conference. The Rubattino Steamship Company as far back as 1870 had bought the port of Assab as a coaling station, but it was not until 1882 that it was declared an Italian colony. This was followed by the conclusion of a treaty with the sultan of Assab, chief of the Danakil, signed on the 15th of March 1883, and subsequently approved by the king of Shoa, whereby Italy obtained the cession of part of Ablis (Aussa) on the Red Sea, Italy undertaking to protect with her fleet the Danakil littoral.
One other event must be recorded as happening before the meeting of the Berlin conference. The king of the Belgians had been driven to the conclusion that, if his African enterprise was to obtain any measure of permanent success, its international status must be recognized. Recognition of the International Association.To this end negotiations were opened with various governments. The first government to “recognize the flag of the International Association of the Congo as the flag of a friendly government” was that of the United States, its declaration to that effect bearing date the 22nd of April 1884. There were, however, difficulties in the way of obtaining the recognition of the European powers, and in order to obtain that of France, King Leopold, on the 23rd of April 1884, while labouring under the feelings of annoyance which had been aroused by the Anglo-Portuguese treaty concluded by Lord Granville in February, authorized Colonel Strauch, president of the International Association, to engage to give France “the right of preference if, through unforeseen circumstances, the Association were compelled to sell its possessions.” France’s formal recognition of the Association as a government was, however, delayed by the discussion of boundary questions until the following February, and in the meantime Germany, Great Britain, Italy, Austria-Hungary, Holland and Spain had all recognized the Association; though Germany alone had done so—on the 8th of November—before the assembling of the conference.
The conference assembled at Berlin on the 15th of November 1884, and after protracted deliberations the “General Act of the Berlin Conference” was signed by the representatives of all the powers attending the conference, on the 26th of February 1885. The powers represented The Berlin Conference of 1884–85.were Germany, Austria-Hungary, Belgium, Denmark, Spain, the United States, France, Great Britain, Italy, Holland, Portugal, Russia, Sweden and Norway, and Turkey, to name them in the alphabetical order adopted in the preamble to the French text of the General Act. Ratifications were deposited by all the signatory powers with the exception of the United States. It is unnecessary to examine in detail the results of the labours of the conference. The General Act dealt with six specific subjects: (1) freedom of trade in the basin of the Congo, (2) the slave trade, (3) neutrality of territories in the basin of the Congo, (4) navigation of the Congo, (5) navigation of the Niger, (6) rules for future occupation on the coasts of the African continent. It will be seen that the act dealt with other matters than the political partition of Africa; but, so far as they concern the present purpose, the results effected by the Berlin Act may be summed up as follows. The signatory powers undertook that any fresh act of taking possession on any portion of the African coast must be notified by the power taking possession, or assuming a protectorate, to the other signatory powers. It was further provided that any such occupation to be valid must be effective. It is also noteworthy that the first reference in an international act to the obligations attaching to “spheres of influence” is contained in the Berlin Act.
It will be remembered that when the conference assembled, the International Association of the Congo had only been recognized as a sovereign state by the United States and Germany. But King Leopold and his agents had taken full advantage of the opportunity Constitution of the Congo State.which the conference afforded, and before the General Act was signed the Association had been recognized by all the signatory powers, with the not very important exception of Turkey, and the fact communicated to the conference by Colonel Strauch. It was not, however, until two months later, in April 1885, that King Leopold, with the sanction of the Belgian legislature, formally assumed the headship of the new state; and on the 1st of August in the same year His Majesty notified the powers that from that date the “Independent State of the Congo” declared that “it shall be perpetually neutral” in conformity with the provisions of the Berlin Act. Thus was finally constituted the Congo Free State, under the sovereignty of King Leopold, though the boundaries claimed for it at that time were considerably modified by subsequent agreements.
From 1885 the scramble among the powers went on with renewed vigour, and in the fifteen years that remained of the century the work of partition, so far as international agreements were concerned, was practically completed. To attempt to follow the process of acquisition year The chief partition treaties.by year would involve a constant shifting of attention from one part of the continent to another, inasmuch as the scramble was proceeding simultaneously all over Africa. It will therefore be the most convenient plan to deal with the continent in sections. Before doing so, however, the international agreements which determined in the main the limits of the possessions of the various powers may be set forth. They are :—
I. The agreement of the 1st of July 1890 between Great Britain and Germany defining their spheres of influence in East, West and South-West Africa. This agreement was the most comprehensive of all the “deals” in African territory, and included in return for the recognition of a British protectorate over Zanzibar the cession of Heligoland to Germany.
II. The Anglo-French declaration of the 5th of August 1890, which recognized a French protectorate over Madagascar, French influence in the Sahara, and British influence between the Niger and Lake Chad.
III. The Anglo-Portuguese treaty of the 11th of June 1891, whereby the Portuguese possessions on the west and east coasts were separated by a broad belt of British territory, extending north to Lake Tanganyika.
IV. The Franco-German convention of the 15th of March 1894, by which the Central Sudan was left to France (this region by an Anglo-German agreement of the 15th of November 1893 having been recognized as in the German sphere). By this convention France was able to effect a territorial )unction of her possessions in North and West Africa with those in the Congo region.
V. Protocols of the 24th of March and the 15th of April 1891, for the demarcation of the Anglo-Italian spheres in East Africa.
VI. The Anglo-French convention of the 14th of June 1898, for the delimitation of the possessions of the two countries west of Lake Chad, with the supplementary declaration of the 21st of March 1899 whereby France recognized the upper Nile valley as in the British sphere of influence.
Coming now to a more detailed consideration of the operations of the powers, the growth of the Congo Free State, which occupied, geographically, a central position, may serve as the starting-point for the story of the partition after the Berlin conference. In the notification to the The growth of the Congo State.powers of the 1st of August 1885, the boundaries of the Free State were set out in considerable detail. The limits thus determined resulted partly from agreements made with France, Germany and Portugal, and partly from treaties with native chiefs. The state acquired the north bank of the Congo from its mouth to a point in the unnavigable reaches, and in the interior the major part of the Congo basin. In the north-east the northern limit was 4° N. up to 30° E., which formed the eastern boundary of the state. The south-eastern frontier claimed by King Leopold extended to Lakes Tanganyika, Mweru and Bangweulu, but it was not until some years later that it was recognized and defined by the agreement of May 1894 with Great Britain. The international character of King Leopold’s enterprise had not long been maintained, and his recognition as sovereign of the Free State confirmed the distinctive character which the Association had assumed, even before that event.
In April 1887 France was informed that the right of pre-emption accorded to her in 1884 had not been intended by King Leopold to prejudice Belgium’s right to acquire the Congo State, and in reply the French minister at Brussels took note of the explanation, “in so far as this interpretation is not contrary to pre-existing international engagements.” By his will, dated the 2nd of August 1889, King Leopold made Belgium formally heir to the sovereign rights of the Congo Free State. In 1895 an annexation bill was introduced into the Belgian parliament, but at that time Belgium had no desire to assume responsibility for the Congo State, and the bill was withdrawn. In 1901, by the terms of a loan granted in 1890, Belgium had again an opportunity of annexing the Congo State, but a bill in favour of annexation was opposed by the government and was withdrawn after King Leopold had declared that the time was not ripe for the transfer. Concessionaire companies and a Domaine de la Couronne had been created in the state, from which the sovereign derived considerable revenues—facts which helped to explain the altered attitude of Leopold II. The agitation in Great Britain and America against the Congo system of government, and the admissions of an official commission of inquiry concerning its maladministration, strengthened, however, the movement in favour of transfer. Nevertheless in June 1906 the king again declared himself opposed to immediate annexation. But under pressure of public opinion the Congo government concluded, 28th of November 1907, a new annexation treaty. As it stipulated for the continued existence of the crown domain the treaty provoked vehement opposition. Leopold II. was forced to yield, and an additional act was signed, 5th of March 1908, providing for the suppression of the domain in return for financial subsidies. The treaty, as amended, was approved by the Belgian parliament in the session of 1908. Thus the Congo state, after an existence of 24 years as an independent power, became a Belgian colony. (See Congo Free State.)
The area of the Free State, vast as it was, did not suffice to
satisfy the ambition of its sovereign. King Leopold maintained
that the Free State enjoyed equally with any other state the
right to extend its frontiers. His ambition involved the
state in the struggle between Great Britain and France for
the upper Nile. To understand the situation it is necessary
to remember the condition of the Egyptian Sudan at that
time. The mahdi, Mahommed Ahmed, had preached a holy war
against the Egyptians, and, after the capture of Khartum and
the death of General C. G. Gordon, the Sudan was abandoned
to the dervishes. The Egyptian frontier was withdrawn to
Wadi Haifa, and the vast provinces of Kordofan, Darfur and
the Bahr-el-Ghazal were given over to dervish tyranny and
misrule. It was obvious that Egypt would sooner or later
seek to recover her position in the Sudan, as the command of
the upper Nile was recognized as essential to her continued
prosperity. But the international position of the abandoned
provinces was by no means clear. The British government,
by the Anglo-German agreement of July 1890, had secured the
assent of Germany to the statement that the British sphere
of influence in East Africa was bounded on the west by the
Congo Free State and by “the western watershed of the basin
of the upper Nile”; but this claim was not recognized either
by France or by the Congo Free State. From her base on the
Congo, France was busily engaged pushing forward along the
northern tributaries of the great river. On the 27th of April
1887 an agreement was signed with the Congo Free State by
which the right bank of the Ubangi river was secured to French
influence, and the left bank to the Congo Free State. The
desire of France to secure a footing in the upper Nile valley
was partly due, as has been seen, to her anxiety to extend
a French zone across Africa, but it was also and to a large
The contest for the
upper Nile. extent attributable to the belief, widely entertained in France, that by establishing herself on the upper Nile France could regain the position in Egyptian affairs which she had sacrificed in 1882. With these strong inducements France set steadily to work to consolidate her position on the tributary streams of the upper Congo basin, preparatory to crossing into the valley of the upper Nile. Meanwhile a similar advance was being made from the Congo Free State northwards and eastwards. King Leopold had two objects in view—to obtain control of the rich province of the Bahr-el-Ghazal and to secure an outlet on the Nile. Stations were established on the Welle river, and in February 1891 Captain van Kerckhoven left Leopoldville for the upper Welle with the most powerful expedition which had, up to that time, been organized by the Free State. After some heavy fighting the expedition reached the Nile in September 1892, and opened up communications with the remains of the old Egyptian garrison at Wadelai. Other expeditions under Belgian officers penetrated into the Bahr-el-Ghazal, and it was apparent that King Leopold proposed to rely on effective occupation as an answer to any claims which might be advanced by either Great Britain or France. The news of what was happening in this remote region Of Africa filtered through to Europe very slowly, but King Leopold was warned on several occasions that Great Britain would not recognize any claims by the Congo Free State on the Bahr-el-Ghazal. The difficulty was, however, that neither from Egypt, whence the road was barred by the khalifa (the successor of the mahdi), nor from Uganda, which was far too remote from the coast to serve as the base of a large expedition, could a British force be despatched to take effective occupation of the upper Nile valley. There was, therefore, danger lest the French should succeed in establishing themselves on the upper Nile before the preparations which were being made in Egypt for “smashing” the khalifa were completed.
In these circumstances Lord Rosebery, who was then British
foreign minister, began, and his successor, the 1st earl of
Kimberley, completed, negotiations with King Leopold which
resulted in the conclusion of the Anglo-Congolese agreement of
12th May 1894. By this agreement King Leopold recognized the
The Anglo-Congolese agreement
of 1894. British sphere of influence as laid down in the Anglo-German agreement of July 1890, and Great Britain granted a lease to King Leopold of certain territories in the western basin of the upper Nile, extending on the Nile from a point on Lake Albert to Fashoda, and westwards to the Congo-Nile watershed. The practical effect of this agreement was to give the Congo Free State a lease, during its sovereign’s lifetime, of the old Bahr-el-Ghazal province, and to secure after His Majesty’s death as much of that territory as lay west of the 30th meridian, together with access to a port on Lake Albert, to his successor. At the same time the Congo Free State leased to Great Britain a strip of territory, 15½ m. in breadth, between the north end of Lake Tanganyika and the south end of Lake Albert Edward. This agreement was hailed as a notable triumph for British diplomacy. But the triumph was short-lived. By the agreement of July 1890 with Germany, Great Britain had been reluctantly compelled to abandon her hopes of through communication between the British spheres in the northern and southern parts of the continent, and to Consent to the boundary of German East Africa marching with the eastern frontier of the Congo Free State. Germany frankly avowed that she did not wish to have a powerful neighbour interposed between herself and the Congo Free State. It was obvious that the new agreement would effect precisely what Germany had declined to agree to in 1890. Accordingly Germany protested in such vigorous terms that, on the 22nd of June 1894, the offending article was withdrawn by an exchange of notes between Great Britain and the Congo Free State. Opinion in France was equally excited by the new agreement. It was obvious that the lease to the Congo Free State was intended to exclude France from the Nile by placing the Congo Free State as a barrier across her path. Pressure was brought to bear on King Leopold, from Paris, to renounce the rights acquired under the agreement, and on the 14th of August 1894 King Leopold signed an agreement with France by which, in exchange for France’s acknowledgment of the Mbomu river as his northern frontier, His Majesty renounced all occupation and all exercise of political influence west of 30° E., and north of a line drawn from that meridian to the Nile along 5° 30′ N.
This left the way still open for France to the Nile, and in June 1896 Captain J. Marchand left France with secret instructions to lead an expedition into the Nile valley. On the 1st of March in the following year he left Brazzaville, and began a journey which all but plunged Great Britain and France into war. The difficulties which Captain Marchand had to overcome were mainly those connected with transport. In October 1897 the expedition reached the banks of the Sue, the waters of which eventually flow into the Nile. Here a post was established and the “Faidherbe,” a steamer which had been carried across the Congo-Nile watershed in sections, was put together and launched. On the 1st of May 1898 Marchand started on the final stage of his journey, and reached Fashoda on the 10th of July, having established a chain of posts en route. At Fashoda the French flag was at once raised, and a “treaty” made with the local chief. Meanwhile other expeditions had been concentrating on The French at Fashoda. Fashoda—a mud-flat situated in a swamp, round which for many months raged the angry passions of two great peoples. French expeditions, with a certain amount of assistance from the emperor Menelek of Abyssinia, had been striving to reach the Nile from the east, so as to join hands with Marchand and complete the line of posts into the Abyssinian frontier. In this, however, they were unsuccessful. No better success attended the expedition under Colonel (afterwards Sir) Ronald Macdonald, R.E., sent by the British government from Uganda to anticipate the French in the occupation of the upper Nile. It was from the north that claimants arrived to dispute with the French their right to Fashoda, and all that the occupation of that dismal post implied. In 1896 an Anglo-Egyptian army, under the direction of Sir Herbert (afterwards Lord) Kitchener, had begun to advance southwards for the reconquest of the Egyptian Sudan. On the 2nd of September 1898 Khartum was captured, and the khalifa’s army dispersed. It was then that news reached the Anglo-Egyptian commander, from native sources, that there were white men flying a strange flag at Fashoda. The sirdar at once proceeded in a steamer up the Nile, and courteously but firmly requested Captain Marchand to remove the French flag. On his refusal the Egyptian flag was raised close to the French flag, and the dispute was referred to Europe for adjustment between the British and French governments. A critical situation ensued. Neither government was inclined to give way, and for a time war seemed imminent. Happily Lord Salisbury was able to announce, on the 4th of November, that France was willing to recognize the British claims, and the incident was finally closed on the 21st of March 1899, when an Anglo-French declaration was signed, by the terms of which France withdrew from the Nile valley and accepted a boundary line which satisfied her earlier ambition by uniting the whole of her territories in North, West and Central Africa into a homogeneous whole, while effectually preventing the realization of her dream of a transcontinental empire from west to east. By this declaration it was agreed that the dividing line between the British and French spheres, north of the Congo Free State, should follow the Congo-Nile water-parting up to its intersection with the 11th parallel of north latitude, from which point it was to be “drawn as far as the 15th parallel in such a manner as to separate in principle the kingdom of Wadai from what constituted in 1882 the province of Darfur,” but in no case was it to be drawn west of the 21st degree of east longitude, or east of the 23rd degree. From the 15th parallel the line was continued north and north-west to the intersection of the Tropic of Cancer with 16° E. French influence was to prevail west of this line, British influence to the east. Wadai was thus definitely assigned to France.
When, by the declaration of the 21st of March 1899, France renounced all territorial ambitions in the upper Nile basin, King Leopold revived his claims to the Bahr-el-Ghazal province under the terms of the lease granted by Article 2 of the Anglo-Congolese agreement of 1894. Fate of the Bar-el-Ghazal. This step he was encouraged to take by the assertion of Lord Salisbury, in his capacity as secretary of state for foreign affairs during the negotiations with France concerning Fashoda, that the lease to King Leopold was still in full force. But the assertion was made simply as a declaration of British right to dispose of the territory, and the sovereign of the Congo State found that there was no disposition in Great Britain to allow the Bahr-el-Ghazal to fall into his hands. Long and fruitless negotiations ensued. The king at length (1904) sought to force a settlement by sending armed forces into the province. Diplomatic representations having failed to secure the withdrawal of these forces, the Sudan government issued a proclamation which had the effect of cutting off the Congo stations from communication with the Nile, and finally King Leopold consented to an agreement, signed in London on the 9th of May 1906, whereby the 1894 lease was formally annulled. The Bahr-el-Ghazal thenceforth became undisputedly an integral part of the Anglo-Egyptian Sudan. King Leopold had, however, by virtue of the 1894 agreement administered the comparatively small portion of the leased area in which his presence was not resented by France. This territory, including part of the west bank of the Nile and known as the Lado Enclave, the 1906 agreement allowed King Leopold to “continue during his reign to occupy.” Provision was made that within six months of the termination of His Majesty’s reign the enclave should be handed over to the Sudan government (see Congo Free State.) In this manner ended the long struggle for supremacy on the upper Nile, Great Britain securing the withdrawal of all European rivals.
The course of events in the southern half of the continent
may now be traced. By the convention of the 14th of February
1885, in which Portugal recognized the sovereignty of
the Congo Free State, and by a further convention
concluded with France in 1886, Portugal secured
African schemes. recognition of her claim to the territory known as the Kabinda enclave, lying north of the Congo, but not to the northern bank of the river. By the same convention of 1885 Portugal’s claim to the southern bank of the river as far as Noki (the limit of navigation from the sea) had been admitted. Thus Portuguese possessions on the west coast extended from the Congo to the mouth of the Kunene river. In the interior the boundary with the Free State was settled as far as the Kwango river, but disputes arose as to the right to the country of Lunda, otherwise known as the territory of the Muato Yanvo. On the 25th of May 1891 a treaty was signed at Lisbon, by which this large territory was divided between Portugal and the Free State. The interior limits of the Portuguese possessions in Africa south of the equator gave rise, however, to much more serious discussions than were involved in the dispute as to the Muato Yanvo’s kingdom. Portugal, as has been stated, claimed all the territories between Angola and Mozambique, and she succeeded in inducing both France and Germany, in 1886, to recognize the king of Portugal’s “right to exercise his sovereign and civilizing influence in the territories which separate the Portuguese possessions or Angola and Mozambique.” The publication of the treaties containing this declaration, together with a map showing Portuguese claims extending over the whole of the Zambezi valley, and over Matabeleland to the south and the greater part of Lake Nyasa to the north, immediately provoked a formal protest from the British government. On the 13th of August 1887 the British charge d’affaires at Lisbon transmitted to the Portuguese minister for foreign affairs a memorandum from Lord Salisbury, in which the latter formally protested “against any claims not founded on occupation,” and contended that the doctrine of effective occupation had been admitted in principle by all the parties to the Act of Berlin. Lord Salisbury further stated that “Her Majesty’s government cannot recognize Portuguese sovereignty in territory not occupied by her in sufficient strength to enable her to maintain order, protect foreigners and control the natives.” To this Portugal replied that the doctrine of effective occupation was expressly confined by the Berlin Act to the African coast, but at the same time expeditions were hastily despatched up the Zambezi and some of its tributaries to discover traces of former Portuguese occupation. Matabeleland and the districts of Lake Nyasa were specially mentioned in the British protest as countries in which Her Majesty’s government took a special interest. As a matter of fact the extension of British influence northwards to the Zambezi had engaged the attention of the British authorities ever since the appearance of Germany in South-West Africa and the declaration of a British protectorate over Bechuanaland. There were rumours of German activity in Matabeleland, and Rhodesia secured for Great Britain.of a Boer trek north of the Limpopo. Hunters and explorers had reported in eulogistic terms on the rich goldfields and healthy plateau lands of Matabeleland and Mashonaland, over both of which countries a powerful chief, Lobengula, claimed authority. There were many suitors for Lobengula’s favours; but on the 11th of February 1888 he signed a treaty with J. S. Moffat, the assistant commissioner in Bechuanaland, the effect of which was to place all his territory under British protection. Both the Portuguese and the Transvaal Boers were chagrined at this extension of British influence. A number of Boers attempted unsuccessfully to trek into the country, and Portugal opposed her ancient claims to the new treaty. She contended that Lobengula’s authority did not extend over Mashonaland, which she claimed as part of the Portuguese province of Sofala.
Meanwhile preparations were being actively made by British capitalists for the exploitation of the mineral and other resources of Lobengula’s territories. Two rival syndicates obtained, or claimed to have obtained, concessions from Lobengula; but in the summer of 1889 Cecil Rhodes succeeded in amalgamating the conflicting interests, and on the 29th of October of that year the British government granted a charter to the British South Africa Company (see Rhodesia.) The first article of the charter declared that “the principal field of the operations” of the company “shall be the region of South Africa lying immediately to the north of British Bechuanaland, and to the north and west of the South African Republic, and to the west of the Portuguese dominions.” No time was lost in making preparations for effective occupation. On the advice of F. C. Selous it was determined to despatch an expedition to eastern Mashonaland by a new route, which would avoid the Matabele country. This plan was carried out in the summer of 1890, and, thanks to the rapidity with which the column moved and Selous’s intimate knowledge of the country, the British flag was, on the 11th of September, hoisted at a spot on the Makubusi river, where the town of Salisbury now stands, and the country taken possession of in the name of Queen Victoria. Disputes with the Portuguese ensued, and there were several frontier incidents which for a time embittered the relations between the two countries.
Meanwhile, north of the Zambezi, the Portuguese were making desperate but futile attempts to repair the neglect of centuries by hastily organized expeditions and the hoisting of flags. In 1888 an attempt to close the Zambezi to British vessels was frustrated by the firmness of Lord Salisbury. Anglo-Portuguese disputes in Central Africa. In a despatch to the British minister at Lisbon, dated the 25th of June 1888, Lord Salisbury, after brushing aside the Portuguese claims founded on doubtful discoveries three centuries old, stated the British case in a few sentences:—
It is (he wrote) an undisputed point that the recent discoveries of the English traveller, Livingstone, were followed by organized attempts on the part of English religious and commercial bodies to open up and civilize the districts surrounding and adjoining the lake. Many British settlements have been established, the access to which from the sea is by the rivers Zambezi and Shiré. Her Majesty’s government and the British public are much interested in the welfare of these settlements. Portugal does not occupy, and has never occupied, any portion of the lake, nor of the Shiré; she has neither authority nor influence beyond the confluence of the Shiré and Zambezi, where her interior custom-house, now withdrawn, was placed by the terms of the Mozambique Tariff of 1877.
In 1889 it became known to the British government that a considerable Portuguese expedition was being organized under the command of Major Serpa Pinto, for operating in the Zambezi region. In answer to inquiries addressed to the Portuguese government, the foreign minister stated that the object of the expedition was to visit the Portuguese settlements on the upper Zambezi. The British government was, even so late as 1889, averse from declaring a formal protectorate over the Nyasa region; but early in that year H. H. (afterwards Sir Harry) Johnston was sent out to Mozambique as British consul, with instructions to travel in the interior and report on the troubles that had arisen with the Arabs on Lake Nyasa and with the Portuguese. The discovery by D. J. Rankin in 1889 of a navigable mouth of the Zambezi–the Chinde–and the offer by Cecil Rhodes of a subsidy of £10,000 a year from the British South Africa Company, removed some of the objections to a protectorate entertained by the British government; but Johnston’s instructions were not to proclaim a protectorate unless circumstances compelled him to take that course. To his surprise Johnston learnt on his arrival at the Zambezi that Major Serpa Pinto’s expedition had been suddenly deflected to the north. Hurrying forward, Johnston overtook the Portuguese expedition and warned its leader that any attempt to establish political influence north of the Ruo river would compel him to take steps to protect British interests. On arrival at the Ruo, Major Serpa Pinto returned to Mozambique for instructions, and in his absence Lieutenant Coutinho crossed the river, attacked the Makololo chiefs and sought to obtain possession of the Shiré highlands by a coup de main. John Buchanan, the British vice-consul, lost no time in declaring the country under British protection, and his action was subsequently confirmed by Johnston on his return from a treaty-making expedition on Lake Nyasa. On the news of these events reaching Europe the British government addressed an ultimatum to Portugal, as the result of which Lieutenant Coutinho’s action was disavowed, and he was ordered to withdraw the Portuguese forces south of the Ruo. After prolonged negotiations, a convention was signed between Great Britain and Portugal on the 20th of August 1890, by which Great Britain obtained a broad belt of territory north of the Zambezi, stretching from Lake Nyasa on the east, the southern end of Tanganyika on the north, and the Kabompo tributary of the Zambezi on the west; while south of the Zambezi Portugal retained the right bank of the river from a point ten miles above Zumbo, and the western boundary of her territory south of the river was made to coincide roughly with the 33rd degree of east longitude. The publication of the convention aroused deep resentment in Portugal, and the government, unable to obtain its ratification by the chamber of deputies, resigned. In October the abandonment of the convention was accepted by the new Portuguese ministry as a fait accompli; but on the 14th of November the two governments signed an agreement for a modus vivendi, by which they engaged to recognize the territorial limits indicated in the convention of 20th August “in so far that from the date of the present agreement British and Portuguese spheres defined. to the termination thereof neither Power will make treaties, accept protectorates, nor exercise any act of sovereignty within the spheres of influence assigned to the other party by the said convention.” The breathing-space thus gained enabled feeling in Portugal to cool down, and on the 11th of June 1891 another treaty was signed, the ratifications being exchanged on the 3rd of July, As already stated, this is the main treaty defining the British and Portuguese spheres both south and north of the Zambezi. It contained many other provisions relating to trade and navigation, providing, inter alia, a maximum transit duty of 3% on imports and exports crossing Portuguese territories on the east coast to the British sphere, freedom of navigation of the Zambezi and Shiré for the ships of all nations, and stipulations as to the making of railways, roads and telegraphs. The territorial readjustment effected was slightly more favourable to Portugal than that agreed upon by the 1890 convention. Portugal was given both banks of the Zambezi to a point ten miles west of Zumbo—the farthest settlement of the Portuguese on the river. South of the Zambezi the frontier takes a south and then an east course till it reaches the edge of the continental plateau, thence running, roughly, along the line of 33° E. southward to the north-eastern frontier of the Transvaal. Thus by this treaty Portugal was left in the possession of the coast-lands, while Great Britain maintained her right to Matabele and Mashona lands. The boundary between the Portuguese sphere of influence on the west coast and the British sphere of influence north of the Zambezi was only vaguely indicated; but it was to be drawn in such a manner as to leave the Barotse country within the British sphere, Lewanika, the paramount chief of the Marotse, claiming that his territory extended much farther to the west than was admitted by the Portuguese. In August 1903 the question what were the limits of the Barotse kingdom was referred to the arbitration of the king of Italy. By his award, delivered in June 1905, the western limit of the British sphere runs from the northern frontier of German South-West Africa up the Kwando river to 22° E., follows that meridian north to 13° S., then runs due east to 24° E., and then north again to the frontier of the Congo State.
Before the conclusion of the treaty of June 1891 with Portugal, the British government had made certain arrangements for the administration of the large area north of the Zambezi reserved to British influence. On the 1st of February Sir Harry Johnston was appointed imperial commissioner in Nyasaland, and a fortnight later the British South Africa Company intimated a desire to extend its operations north of the Zambezi. Negotiations followed, and the field of operations of the Chartered Company was, on the 2nd of April 1891, extended so as to cover (with the exception of Nyasaland) the whole of the British sphere of influence north of the Zambezi (now known as Northern Rhodesia). On the 14th of May a formal protectorate was declared over Nyasaland, including the Shire highlands and a belt of territory extending along the whole of the western shore of Lake Nyasa. The name was changed in 1893 to that of the British Central Africa Protectorate, for which designation was substituted in 1907 the more appropriate title of Nyasaland Protectorate.
At the date of the assembling of the Berlin conference the German government had notified that the coast-line on the south-west of the continent, from the Orange river to Cape Frio, had been placed under German protection. On the 13th of April 1885 the German South-West Germany’s share of South Africa.Africa Company was constituted under an order of the imperial cabinet with the rights of state sovereignty, including mining royalties and rights, and a railway and telegraph monopoly. In that and the following years the Germans vigorously pursued the business of treaty-making with the native chiefs in the interior; and when, in July 1890, the British and German governments came to an agreement as to the limits of their respective spheres of influence in various parts of Africa, the boundaries of German South-West Africa were fixed in their present position. By Article III. of this agreement the north bank of the Orange river up to the point of its intersection by the 20th degree of east longitude was made the southern boundary of the German sphere of influence. The eastern boundary followed the 20th degree of east longitude to its intersection by the 22nd parallel of south latitude, then ran eastwards along that parallel to the point of its intersection by the 21st degree of east longitude. From that point it ran northwards along the last-named meridian to the point of its intersection by the 18th parallel of south latitude, thence eastwards along that parallel to the river Chobe or Kwando, and along the main channel of that river to its junction with the Zambezi, where it terminated. The northern frontier marched with the southern boundary of Portuguese West Africa. The object of deflecting the eastern boundary near its northern termination was to give Germany access by her own territory to the upper waters of the Zambezi, and it was declared that this strip of territory was at no part to be less than 20 English miles in width.
To complete the survey of the political partition of Africa south of the Zambezi, it is necessary briefly to refer to the events connected with the South African Republic and the Orange Free State. In October 1885 the British government made an agreement with the New Republic, a small Fate of the Dutch Republics.community of Boer farmers who had in 1884–85 seized part of Zululand and set up a government of their own, defining the frontier between the New Republic and Zululand; but in July 1888 the New Republic was incorporated in the South African Republic. In a convention of July–August 1890 the British government and the government of the South African Republic confirmed the independence of Swaziland, and on the 8th of November 1893 another convention was signed with the same object; but on the 19th of December 1894 the British government agreed to the South African Republic exercising “all rights and powers of protection, legislation, jurisdiction and administration over Swaziland and the inhabitants thereof,” subject to certain conditions and provisions, and to the non-incorporation of Swaziland in the Republic. In the previous September Pondoland had been annexed to Cape Colony; on the 23rd of April 1895 Tongaland was declared by proclamation to be added to the dominions of Queen Victoria, and in December 1897 Zululand and Tongaland, or Amatongaland, were incorporated with the colony of Natal. The history of the events that led up to the Boer War of 1899–1902 cannot be recounted here (see Transvaal, History), but in October 1899 the South African Republic and the Orange Free State addressed an ultimatum to Great Britain and invaded Natal and Cape Colony. As a result of the military operations that followed, the Orange Free State was, on the 28th of May 1900, proclaimed by Lord Roberts a British colony under the name “Orange River Colony,” and the South African Republic was on the 25th of October 1900 incorporated in the British empire as the “Transvaal Colony.” In January 1903 the districts of Vryheid (formerly the New Republic), Utrecht and part of the Wakkerstroom district, a tract of territory comprising in all about 7000 sq. m., were transferred from the Transvaal colony to Natal. In 1907 both the Transvaal and Orange River Colony were granted responsible government.
On the east coast the two great rivals were Germany and Great Britain. Germany on the 30th of December 1886, and Great Britain on the 11th of June 1891, formally recognized the Rovuma river as the northern boundary of the Portuguese sphere of influence on that coast; but it Anglo-German rivalry in East Africa.was to the north of that river, over the vast area of East or East Central Africa in which the sultan of Zanzibar claimed to exercise suzerainty, that the struggle between the two rival powers was most acute. The independence of the sultans of Zanzibar had been recognized by the governments of Great Britain and France in 1862, and the sultan’s authority extended almost uninterruptedly along the coast of the mainland, from Cape Delgado in the south to Warsheik on the north—a stretch of coast more than a thousand miles long—though to the north the sultan’s authority was confined to certain ports. In Zanzibar itself, where Sir John Kirk, Livingstone’s companion in his second expedition, was British consul-general, British influence was, when the Berlin conference met, practically supreme, though German traders had established themselves on the island and created considerable commercial interests. Away from the coasts the limits and extent of the sultan’s authority were far from being clearly defined. The sultan himself claimed that it extended as far as Lake Tanganyika, but the claim did not rest on any very solid ground of effective occupation. The little-known region of the Great Lakes had for some time attracted the attention of the men who were directing the colonial movement in Germany; and, as has been stated, a small band of pioneers actually landed on the mainland opposite Zanzibar in November 1884, and made their first “treaty” with the chief of Mbuzini on the 19th of that month. Pushing up the Wami river the three adventurers reached the Usagara country, and concluded more “treaties,” the net result being that when, in the middle of December, Karl Peters returned to the coast he brought back with him documents which were claimed to concede some 60,000 sq. m. of country to the German Colonization Society. Peters hurried back to Berlin, and on the 17th of February 1885 the German emperor issued a “Charter of Protection” by which His Majesty accepted the suzerainty of the newly-acquired territory, and “placed under our Imperial protection the territories in question.” The conclusion of these treaties was, on the 6th of March, notified to the British government and to the sultan of Zanzibar. Immediately on receipt of the notification the sultan telegraphed an energetic protest to Berlin, alleging that the places placed under German protection had belonged to the sultanate of Zanzibar from the time of his fathers. The German consul-general refused to admit the sultan’s claims, and meanwhile agents of the German society were energetically pursuing the task of treaty-making. The sultan (Seyyid Bargash) despatched a small force to the disputed territory, which was subsequently withdrawn, and in May sent a more imposing expedition under the command of General Lloyd Mathews, the commander-in-chief of the Zanzibar army, to the Kilimanjaro district, inLord Granville’s complaisance towards Germany. order to anticipate the action of German agents. Meanwhile Lord Granville, then at the British Foreign Office, had taken up an extremely friendly attitude towards the German claims. Before these events the sultan of Zanzibar had, on more than one occasion, practically invited Great Britain to assume a protectorate over his dominions. But the invitations had been declined. Egyptian affairs were, in the year 1885, causing considerable anxiety to the British government, and the fact was not without influence on the attitude of the British foreign secretary. On the 25th of May 1885, in a despatch to the British ambassador at Berlin, Lord Granville instructed Sir E. Malet to communicate the views of the British cabinet to Prince Bismarck:—
I have to request your Excellency to state that the supposition that Her Majesty’s Government have no intention of opposing the German scheme of colonization in the neighbourhood of Zanzibar is absolutely correct. Her Majesty’s Government, on the contrary, view with favour these schemes, the realization of which will entail the civilization of large tracts over which hitherto no European influence has been exercised, the co-operation of Germany with Great Britain in the work of the suppression of the slave gangs, and the encouragement of the efforts of the Sultan both in the extinction of the slave trade and in the commercial development of his dominions.
In the same despatch Lord Granville instructed Sir E. Malet to intimate to the German government that some prominent capitalists had originated a plan for a British settlement in the country between the coast and the lakes, which are the sources of the White Nile, “and for its connexion with the coast by a railway.” But Her Majesty’s government would not accord to these prominent capitalists the support they had called for, “unless they were fully satisfied that every precaution was taken to ensure that it should in no way conflict with the interests of the territory that has been taken under German protectorate,” and Prince Bismarck was practically invited to say whether British capitalists were or were not to receive the protection of the British government. The reference in Lord Granville’s despatch was to a proposal made by a number of British merchants and others who had long been interested in Zanzibar, and who saw in the rapid advance of Germany a menace to the interests which had hitherto been regarded as paramount in the sultanate. In 1884 H. H. Johnston had concluded treaties with the chief of Taveta in the Kilimanjaro district, and had transferred these treaties to John Hutton of Manchester. Hutton, with Mr (afterwards Sir William) Mackinnon, was one of the founders of what subsequently became the Imperial British East Africa Company. But in the early stages the champions of British interests in East Africa received no support from their own government, while Germany was pushing her advantage with the energy of a recent convert to colonial expansion, and had even, on the coast, opened negotiations with the sultan of Witu, a small territory situated north of the Tana river, whose ruler claimed to be independent of Zanzibar. On the 5th of May 1885 the sultan of Witu executed a deed of sale and cession to a German subject of certain tracts of land on the coast, and later in the same year other treaties or sales of territory were effected, by which German subjects acquired rights on the coast-line claimed by the sultan. Inland, treaties had been concluded on behalf of Germany with the chiefs of the Kilimanjaro region, and an intimation to that effect made to the British government. But before this occurred the German government had succeeded in extracting an acknowledgment of the validity of the earlier treaties from the sultan of Zanzibar. Early in August a powerful German squadron appeared off Zanzibar, and on the 14th of that month the sultan yielded to the inevitable, acknowledged the German protectorate over Usagara and Witu, and undertook to withdraw his soldiers.
Meanwhile negotiations had been opened for the appointment of an international commission, “for the purpose of inquiring into the claims of the sultans of Zanzibar to sovereignty over certain territories on the east coast of Africa, and of ascertaining their precise limits.” The governments Partition of the sultanate of Zanzibar.to be represented were Great Britain, France and Germany, and towards the end of 1885 commissioners were appointed. The commissioners reported on the 9th of June 1886, and assigned to the sultan the islands of Zanzibar, Pemba, Lamu, Mafia and a number of other small islands. On the mainland they recognized as belonging to the sultan a continuous strip of territory, 10 sea-miles in depth, from the south bank of the Minengani river, a stream a short distance south of the Rovuma, to Kipini, at the mouth of the Tana river, some 600 m. in length. North of Kipini the commissioners recognized as belonging to the sultan the stations of Kismayu, Brava, Marka and Mukdishu, with radii landwards of 10 sea-miles, and of Warsheik with a radius of 5 sea-miles. By an exchange of notes in October–November 1886 the governments of Great Britain and Germany accepted the reports of the delimitation commissioners, to which the sultan adhered on the 4th of the following December. But the British and German governments did more than determine what territories were to be assigned to the sultanate of Zanzibar. They agreed to a delimitation of their respective spheres of influence in East Africa. The territory to be affected by this arrangement was to be bounded on the south by the Rovuma river, “and on the north by a line which, starting from the mouth of the Tana river, follows the course of that river or its affluents to the point of intersection of the equator and the 38th degree of east longitude, thence strikes direct to the point of intersection of the 1st degree of north latitude with the 37th degree of east longitude, where the line terminates.” The line of demarcation between the British and the German spheres of influence was to start from the mouth of the river Wanga or Umba (which enters the ocean opposite Pemba Island to the north of Zanzibar), and running north-west was to skirt the northern base of the Kilimanjaro range, and thence to be drawn direct to the point on the eastern side of Victoria Nyanza intersected by the 1st degree of south latitude. South of this line German influence was to prevail; north of the line was the British sphere. The sultan’s dominions having been thus truncated, Germany associated herself with the recognition of the “independence” of Zanzibar in which France and Great Britain had joined in 1862. The effect of this agreement was to define the spheres of influence of the two countries as far as Victoria Nyanza, but it provided no limit westwards, and left the country north of the Tana river, in which Germany had already acquired some interests near the coast, open for fresh annexations. The conclusion of the agreement immediately stimulated the enterprise both of the German East African Company, to which Peters’s earlier treaties had been transferred, and of the British capitalists to whom reference had been made in Lord Granville’s despatch. The German East African Company was incorporated by imperial charter in March 1887, and the British capitalists formed themselves into the British East Africa Association, and on the 24th of May 1887 obtained, through the good offices of Sir William Mackinnon, a concession of the 10-miles strip of coast from the Umba river in the south to Kipini in the north. The British association further sought to extend its rights in the sphere reserved to British influence by making treaties with the native chiefs behind the coast strip, and for this purpose various expeditions were sent into the interior. When they had obtained concessions over the country for some 200 m. inland the associated Formation of British East Africa. capitalists applied to the British government for a charter, which was granted on the 3rd of September 1888, and the association became the Imperial British East Africa Company (see British East Africa). The example set by the British company in obtaining a lease of the coast strip between the British sphere of influence and the sea was quickly followed by the German association, which, on the 28th of April 1888, concluded an agreement with the sultan Khalifa, who had succeeded his brother Bargash, by which the association leased the strip of Zanzibar territory between the German sphere and the sea. It was not, however, until August that the German officials took over the administration, and their want of tact and ignorance of native administration almost immediately provoked a rebellion of so serious a character that it was not suppressed until the imperial authorities had taken the matter in hand. Shortly after its suppression the administration was entrusted to an imperial officer, and the sultan’s rights on the mainland strip were bought outright by Germany for four millions of marks (£200,000).
Events of great importance had been happening, meanwhile, in the country to the west and north of the British sphere of influence. The British company had sent caravans into the interior to survey the country, to make treaties with the native chiefs and to report on the commercial and agricultural possibilities. One of these had gone up the Tana river. But another and a rival expedition was proceeding along the northern bank of this same river. Karl Peters, whose energy cannot be denied, whatever may be thought of his methods, set out with an armed caravan up the Tana on the pretext of leading an expedition to the relief of Emin Pasha, the governor of the equatorial province of the Egyptian Sudan, then reported to be hemmed in by the dervishes at Wadelai. His expedition was not sanctioned by the German government, and the British naval commander had orders to prevent his landing. But Peters succeeded in evading the British vessels and proceeded up the river, planting German flags and fighting the natives who opposed his progress. Early in 1890 he reached Kavirondo, and there found letters from Mwanga, king of Uganda, addressed to F. J. Jackson, the leader of an expedition sent out by the British East AfricaUganda secured by Great Britain. Company, imploring the company’s representative to come to his assistance and offering to accept the British flag. To previous letters, less plainly couched. from the king, Jackson had returned the answer that his instructions were not to enter Uganda, but that he would do so in case of need. The letters that fell into Peters’s hands were in reply to those from Jackson. Peters did not hesitate to open the letters, and on reading them he at once proceeded to Uganda, where, with the assistance of the French Roman Catholic priests, he succeeded in inducing Mwanga to sign a loosely worded treaty intended to place him under German protection. On hearing of this Jackson at once set out for Uganda, but Peters did not wait for his arrival, leaving for the south of Victoria Nyanza some days before Jackson arrived at Mengo, Mwanga’s capital. As Mwanga would not agree to Jackson’s proposals, Jackson returned to the coast, leaving a representative at Mengo to protect the company’s interests. Captain (afterwards Sir) F. D. Lugard, who had recently entered the company’s employment, was at once ordered to proceed to Uganda. But in the meantime an event of great importance had taken place, the conclusion of the agreement between Great Britain and Germany with reference to their different spheres of influence in various parts of Africa.
The Anglo-German agreement of the 1st of July 1890 has
already been referred to and its importance insisted upon.
Here we have to deal with the provisions in reference to East
Africa. In return for the cession of Heligoland, Lord Salisbury
obtained from Germany the recognition of a British protectorate
over the dominions of the sultan of Zanzibar, including the
islands of Zanzibar and Pemba, but excluding the strip leased to
Germany, which was subsequently ceded absolutely to Germany.
Germany further agreed to withdraw the protectorate declared
over Witu and the adjoining coast up to Kismayu in favour of
Great Britain, and to recognize as within the British sphere of
influence the vast area bounded, on the south by the frontier
line laid down in the agreement of 1886, which was to be extended
along the first parallel of south latitude across Victoria Nyanza
to the frontiers of the Congo Free State, on the west by the
Congo Free State and the western watershed of the Nile, and on
the north by a line commencing on the coast at the north bank of
the mouth of the river Juba, then ascending that bank of the
river until it reached the territory at that time regarded as
reserved to the influence of Italy in Gallaland and Abyssinia,
when it followed the frontier of the Italian sphere to the confines
of Egypt. To the south-west of the German sphere in East
Africa the boundary was formed by the eastern and northern
shore of Lake Nyasa, and round the western shore to the mouth
of the Songwe river, from which point it crossed the Nyasa-
Tanganyika plateau to the southern end of the last-named lake,Limits of German
East Africa defined. leaving the Stevenson Road on the British side of the boundary. The effect of this treaty was to remove all serious causes of dispute about territory between Germany and Great Britain in East Africa. It rendered quite valueless Peters’s treaty with Mwanga and his promenade along the Tana; it freed Great Britain from any fear of German competition to the northwards, and recognized that her influence extended to the western limits of the Nile valley. But, on the other hand, Great Britain had to relinquish the ambition of connecting her sphere of influence in the Nile valley with her possessions in Central and South Africa. On this point Germany was quite obdurate; and, as already stated, an attempt subsequently made (May 1894) to secure this object by the lease of a strip of territory from the Congo Free State was frustrated by German opposition.
Uganda having thus been assigned to the British sphere of influence by the only European power in a position to contest its possession with her, the subsequent history of that region, and of the country between the Victoria Nyanza and the coast, must be traced in the articles on British East Africa and Uganda, but it may be well briefly to record here the following facts:—The Imperial British East Africa Company, finding the burden of administration too heavy for its financial resources, and not receiving the assistance it felt itself entitled to receive from the imperial authorities, intimated that it would be compelled to withdraw at the end of the year 1892. Funds were raised to enable the company to continue its administration until the end of March 1893, and a strong public protest against evacuation compelled the government to determine in favour of the retention of the country. In January 1893 Sir Gerald Portal left the coast as a special commissioner to inquire into the “best means of dealing with the country, whether through Zanzibar or otherwise.” On the 31st of March the union jack was raised, and on the 29th of May a fresh treaty was concluded with King Mwanga placing his country under British protection. A formal protectorate was declared over Uganda proper on the 19th of June 1894, which was subsequently extended so as to include the countries westwards towards the Congo Free State, eastwards to the British East Africa protectorate and Abyssinia, and northwards to the Anglo-Egyptian Sudan. The British East Africa protectorate was constituted in June 1895, when the Imperial British East Africa Company relinquished all its rights in exchange for a money payment, and the administration was assumed by the imperial authorities. On the 1st of April 1902 the eastern province of the Uganda protectorate was transferred to the British East Africa protectorate, which thus secured control of the whole length of the so-called Uganda railway, and at the same time obtained access to the Victoria Nyanza.
Early in the ’eighties, as already seen, Italy had obtained her first formal footing on the African coast at the Bay of Assab (Aussa) on the Red Sea. In 1885 the troubles in which Egypt found herself involved compelled the khedive and his advisers to loosen their hold on Italy in
East Africa.the Red Sea littoral, and, with the tacit approval of Great Britain, Italy took possession of Massawa and other ports on that coast. By 1888 Italian influence had been extended from Ras Kasar on the north to the northern frontier of the French colony of Obok on the south, a distance of some 650 m. The interior limits of Italian influence were but ill defined, and the negus Johannes (King John) of Abyssinia viewed with anything but a favourable eye the approach of the Italians towards the Abyssinian highlands. In January 1887 an Italian force was almost annihilated at Dogali, but the check only served to spur on the Italian government to fresh efforts. The Italians occupied Keren and Asmara in the highlands, and eventually, in May 1889, concluded a treaty of peace and friendship with the negus Menelek, who had seized the throne on the death of Johannes, killed in battle with the dervishes in March of the same year. This agreement, known as the treaty of Uccialli, settled the frontiers between Abyssinia and the Italian sphere, and contained the following article:—
XVII. His Majesty the King of Kings of Ethiopia consents to avail himself of the Italian government for any negotiations which he may enter into with the other powers or governments.
In Italy and by other European governments this article was generally regarded as establishing an Italian protectorate over Abyssinia; but this interpretation was never accepted by the emperor Menelek, and at no time did Italy succeed in establishing any very effective control over Abyssinian affairs. North of the Italian coast sphere the Red Sea littoral was still under Egyptian rule, while immediately to the south a small stretch of coast on the Gulf of Tajura constituted the sole French possession on the East African mainland (see Somaliland.) Moreover, when Egyptian claims to the Somali coast were withdrawn, Great Britain took the opportunity to establish her influence on the northern Somali coast, opposite Aden. Between the 1st of May 1884 and the 15th of March 1886 ten treaties were concluded, placing under British influence the northern Somali coast from Ras Jibuti on the west to Bandar Ziada on the east. In the meantime Italy, not content with her acquisitions on the Red Sea, had been concluding treaties with the Somali chiefs on the east coast. The first treaty was made with the sultan of Obbia on the 8th of February 1889. Later in the same year the British East Africa Company transferred to Italy—the transference being subsequently approved by the sultan of Zanzibar—the ports of Brava, Marka, Mukdishu and Warsheik, leased from Zanzibar. On the 24th of March 1891 an agreement between Italy and Great Britain fixed the northern bank of the Juba up to latitude 6° N. as the southern boundary of Italian influence in Somaliland, the boundary being provisionally prolonged along lines of latitude and longitude to the intersection of the Blue Nile with 35° E. longitude. On the 15th of April 1891 a further agreement fixed the northern limit of the Italian sphere from Ras Kasar on the Red Sea to the point on the Blue Nile just mentioned. By this agreement Italy was to have the right temporarily to occupy Kassala, which was left in the Anglo-Egyptian sphere, in trust for Egypt—a right of which she availed herself in 1894. To complete the work of delimitation the British and Italian governments, on the 5th of May 1894, fixed the boundary of the British sphere of influence in Somaliland from the Anglo-French boundary, which had been settled in February 1888.
But while Great Britain was thus lending her sanction to Italy’s ambitious schemes, the Abyssinian emperor was becoming more and more incensed at Italy’s pretensions to exercise a protectorate over Ethiopia. In 1893 Menelek denounced the treaty of Uccialli, and eventually, in a great battle, fought at Adowa on the 1st of March 1896, the Italians were disastrously defeated. By the subsequent treaty of Adis Ababa, concluded on the 26th of October 1896, the whole of the country to theThe independence of Abyssinia recognized. south of the Mareb, Belesa and Muna rivers was restored to Abyssinia, and Italy acknowledged the absolute independence of Abyssinia. The effect of this was practically to destroy the value of the Anglo-Italian agreement as to the boundaries to the south and west of Abyssinia; and negotiations were afterwards set on foot between the emperor Menelek and his European neighbours with the object of determining the Abyssinian frontiers. Italian Somaliland, bordering on the south-eastern frontier of Abyssinia, became limited to a belt of territory with a depth inland from the Indian Ocean of from 180 to 250 m. The negotiations concerning the frontier lasted until 1908, being protracted over the question as to the possession of Lugh, a town on the Juba, which eventually fell to Italy. After the battle of Adowa the Italian government handed over the administration of the southern part of the country to the Benadir Company, but in January 1905 the government resumed control and at the same time transformed the leasehold rights it held from the sultan of Zanzibar into sovereign rights by the payment to the sultan of £144,000. To facilitate her communications with the interior, Italy also secured from the British government the lease of a small area of land immediately to the north of Kismayu. In British Somaliland the frontier fixed by agreement with Italy in 1894 was modified, in so far as it marched with Abyssinian territory, by an agreement which Sir Rennell Rodd concluded with the emperor Menelek in 1897. The effect of this agreement was to reduce the area of British Somaliland from 75,000 to 68,000 sq. m. In the same year France concluded an agreement with the emperor, which is known to have fixed the frontier of the French Somali Coast protectorate at a distance of 90 kilometres (56 m.) from the coast. The determination of the northern, western and southern limits of Abyssinia proved a more difficult matter. A treaty of July 1900 followed by an agreement of November 1901 defined the boundaries of Eritrea on the side of Abyssinia and the Sudan respectively. In certain details the boundaries thus laid down were modified by an Anglo-Italian-Abyssinian treaty signed at Adis Ababa on the 15th of May 1902. On the same day another treaty was signed at the Abyssinian capital by Sir John Harrington, the British minister plenipotentiary, and the emperor Menelek, whereby the western, or Sudan-Abyssinian, frontier was defined as far south as the intersection of 6° N. and 35° E. Within the British sphere were left the Atbara up to Gallabat, the Blue Nile up to Famaka and the Sobat up to the junction of the Baro and Pibor. While not satisfying Abyssinian claims to their full extent, the frontier laid down was on the whole more favourable to Abyssinia than was the line fixed in the Anglo-Italian agreement of 1891. On the other hand, Menelek gave important economic guarantees and concessions to the Sudan government.
In Egypt the result of the abolition of the Dual Control was to make British influence virtually predominant, though theoretically Turkey remained the suzerain power; and after the reconquest of the Sudan by the Anglo-Egyptian army a convention between the British and Egyptian governments was signed at Cairo on the 19th of January 1899, which, inter alia, provided for the joint use of the British and Egyptian flags in the territories south of the 22nd parallel of north latitude. From the international point of view the British position in Egypt was strengthened by the Anglo-French declaration of the 8th of April 1904. For some time previously there had beenThe Anglo-French agreements of April 1904. a movement on both sides of the Channel in favour of the settlement of a number of important questions in which British and French interests were involved. The movement was no doubt strengthened by the desire to reduce to their least dimensions the possible causes of trouble between the two countries at a time when the outbreak of hostilities between Russia (the ally of France) and Japan (the ally of Great Britain) rendered the European situation peculiarly delicate. On the 8th of April 1904 there was signed in London by the British foreign secretary, the marquess of Lansdowne, and the French ambassador, M. Paul Cambon, a series of agreements relating to several parts of the globe. Here we are concerned only with the joint declaration respecting Egypt and Morocco and a convention relating, in part, to British and French frontiers in West Africa. The latter we shall have occasion to refer to later. The former, notwithstanding the declarations embodied in it that there was “no intention of altering the political status” either of Egypt or of Morocco, cannot be ignored in any account of the partition in Africa. With regard to Egypt the French government declared “that they will not obstruct the action of Great Britain in that country by asking that a limit of time be fixed for the British occupation or in any other manner.” France also assented—as did subsequently the other powers interested—to a khedivial decree simplifying the international control exercised by the Caisse de la Dette over the finances of Egypt.
In order to appreciate aright that portion of the declaration relating to Morocco it is necessary to say a few words about the course of French policy in North-West Africa. In Tunisia the work of strengthening the protectorate established in 1881 had gone steadily forward; but it was in Algeria that the extension of French influence had been most marked. The movement of expansion southwards was inevitable. With the progress of exploration it became increasingly evident that the Sahara constituted no insurmountable barrier between the French possessions in North and West Central Africa. But France had not only the hope of placing Algeria in touch with the Sudan to spur her forward. To consolidate her position in North-West Africa she desired to make French influence supreme in Morocco. The relations between the two countries did not favour the realization of that ambition. The advance southwards of the French forces of occupation evoked loud protests from the Moorish government, particularly with regard to the occupation in 1900–1901 of the Tuat Oases. Under the Franco-Moorish treaty of 1845 the frontier between Algeria and Morocco was defined from the Mediterranean coast as far south as the pass of Teniet el Sassi, in about 34° N.; beyond that came a zone in which no frontier was defined, but in which the tribes and desert villages (ksurs) belonging to the respective spheres of influence were named; while south of the desert villages the treaty stated that in view of the character of the country “the delimitation of it would be superfluous.” Though the frontier was thus left undefined, the sultan maintained that in her advance southwards France had trespassed on territories that unmistakably belonged to Morocco. After some negotiation, however, a protocol was signed in Paris on France’s privileged position in Morocco. the 20th of July 1901, and commissioners appointed to devise measures for the co-operation of the French and Moorish authorities in the maintenance of peaceful conditions in the frontier region. It was reported that in April 1902 the commissioners signed an agreement whereby the Sharifan government undertook to consolidate its authority on the Moorish side of the frontier as far south as Figig. The agreement continued: “Le Gouvernement français, en raison de son voisinage, lui prêtera son appui, en cas de besoin. Le Gouvernement français établira son autorité et la paix dans les régions du Sahara, et le Gouvernement marocain, son voisin, lui aidera de tout son pouvoir.” Meanwhile in the northern districts of Morocco the conditions of unrest under the rule of the young sultan, Abd el Aziz IV., were attracting an increasing amount of attention in Europe and were calling forth demands for their suppression. It was in these circumstances that in the Anglo-French declaration of April 1904 the British government recognized “that it appertains to France, more particularly as a power whose dominions are conterminous for a great distance with those of Morocco, to preserve order in that country, and to provide assistance for the purpose of all administrative, economic, financial and military reforms which it may require.” Both parties to the declaration, “inspired by their feeling of sincere friendship for Spain, take into special consideration the interests which that country derives from her geographical position and from her territorial possessions on the Moorish coast of the Mediterranean. In regard to these interests the French government will come to an understanding with the Spanish government.” The understanding thus foreshadowed was reached later in the same year, Spain securing a sphere of interest on the Mediterranean coast. In pursuance of the policy marked out in the Anglo-French declaration, France was seeking to strengthen her influence in Morocco when in 1905 the attitude of Germany seriously affected her position. On the 8th of July France secured from the German government formal “recognition of the situation created for France in Morocco by the contiguity of a vast extent of territory of Algeria and the Sharifan empire, and by the special relations resulting therefrom between the two adjacent countries, as well as by the special interest for France, due to this fact, that order should reign in the Sharifan Empire.” Finally, in January–April 1906, a conference of the powers was held at Algeciras to devise, by invitation of the sultan, a scheme of reforms to be introduced into Morocco (q.v.) French capital was allotted a larger share than that of any other power in the Moorish state bank which it was decided to institute, and French and Spanish officers were entrusted with the organization of a police force for the maintenance of order in the principal coast towns. The new regime had not been fully inaugurated, however, when a series of outrages led, in 1907, to the military occupation by France of Udja, a town near the Algerian frontier, and of the port of Casablanca on the Atlantic coast of Morocco.
It only remains to be noted, in connexion with the story of French activity in North-West Africa, that with such energy was the penetration of the Sahara pursued that in April 1904 flying columns from Insalah and Timbuktu met by arrangement in mid-desert, and in the following year it was deemed advisable to indicate on the maps the boundary between the Algerian and French West African territories.
Brief reference must be made to the position of Tripoli. While Egypt was brought under British control and Tunisia became a French protectorate, Tripoli remained a province of the Turkish empire with undefined frontiers in the hinterland, a state of affairs which more than once threatened to lead to trouble with France during the expansion of the latter’s influence in the Sahara. As already stated, Italy early gave evidence that it was her ambition to succeed to the province, and, not only by the sultan of Turkey but in Italy also, the Anglo-French declaration of March 1899, respecting the limits of the British and French spheres of influence in north Central Africa, was viewed with some concern. By means of a series of public utterances on the part of French and Italian statesmen in the winter 1901–1902 it Italy’s interest in Tripoli. was made known that the two powers had come to an understanding with regard to their interests in North Africa, and in May 1902 Signor Prinetti, then Italian minister for foreign affairs, speaking in parliament in reply to an interpellation on the subject of Tripoli, declared that if “the status quo in the Mediterranean were ever disturbed, Italy would be sure of finding no one to bar the way to her legitimate aspirations.”
At the opening of the Berlin conference Spain had established no formal claim to any part of the coast to the south of Morocco; but while the conference was sitting, on the 9th of January 1885, the Spanish government intimated that in view of the importance of the Spanish settlements on the Rio de Oro, at Angra de Cintra, Spanish colonies. and at Western Bay (Cape Blanco), and of the documents signed with the independent tribes on that coast, the king of Spain had taken under his protection “the territories of the western coast of Africa comprised between the fore-mentioned Western Bay and Cape Bojador.” The interior limits of the Spanish sphere were defined by an agreement concluded in 1900 with France. By this document some 70,000 sq. m. of the western Sahara were recognized as Spanish.
The same agreement settled a long-standing dispute between Spain and France as to the ownership of the district around the Muni river to be south of Cameroon, Spain securing a block of territory with a coast-line from the Campo river on the north to the Muni river on the south. The northern frontier is formed by the German Cameroon colony, the eastern by 11° 20′ E., and the southern by the first parallel of north latitude to its point of intersection with the Muni river.
Apart from this small block of Spanish territory south of Cameroon, the stretch of coast between Cape Blanco and the mouth of the Congo is partitioned among four European powers—Great Britain, France, Germany and Portugal—and the negro republic of Liberia. Following theDivision of the Guinea coast. coast southwards from Cape Blanco is first the French colony of Senegal, which is indented, along the Gambia river, by the small British colony of that name, and then the comparatively small territory of Portuguese Guinea, all that remains on this coast to represent Portugal’s share in the scramble in a region where she once played so conspicuous a part. To the south of Portuguese Guinea is the French Guinea colony, and still going south and east are the British colony of Sierra Leone, the republic of Liberia, the French colony of the Ivory coast, the British Gold Coast, German Togoland, French Dahomey, the British colony (formerly known as the Lagos colony) and protectorate of Southern Nigeria, the German colony of Cameroon, the Spanish settlements on the Muni river, the French Congo colony, and the small Portuguese enclave north of the Congo to which reference has already been made, which is administratively part of the Angola colony. When the General Act of the Berlin conference was signed the whole of this coast-line had not been formally claimed; but no time was lost by the powers interested in notifying claims to the unappropriated sections, and the conflicting claims put forward necessitated frequent adjustments by international agreements. By a Franco-Portuguese agreement of the 12th of May 1886 the limits of Portuguese Guinea—surrounded landwards by French territory—were defined, and by agreements with Great Britain in 1885 and France in 1892 and 1907 the Liberian republic was confined to an area of about 43,000 sq. m.
The real struggle in West Africa was between France and Great Britain, and France played the dominant part, the exhaustion of Portugal, the apathy of the British government and the late appearance of Germany in the field being all elements that favoured the success of French policy. Before tracing the steps in the historic contest between France and Great Britain it is necessary, however, to deal briefly with the part played by Germany. She naturally could not be disposed of by the chief rivals as easily as were Portugal and Liberia. It will be remembered that Dr Nachtigal, while the proposals for the Berlin conference were under discussion, had planted the German flag on the coast of Togo and in Cameroon in the month of July 1884. In Cameroon Germany found herself with Great Britain for a neighbour to the north, and with France as her southern neighbour on the Gabun river. The utmost activity was displayed in making treaties with native chiefs, and in securing as wide a range of coast for German enterprise as was possible. After various provisional agreements had been concluded between Great Britain and Germany, a “provisional line of demarcation” was adopted in the famous agreement of the 1st of July 1890, starting from the head of the Rio del Rey creek and going to the point, about 9° 8′ E., marked “rapids” on the British Admiralty chart. By a further agreement of the 14th of April 1893, the right bank of the Rio del Rey was made the boundary between the Oil Rivers Protectorate (now Southern Nigeria) and Cameroon. In the following November (1893) the boundary was continued from the “rapids” before mentioned, on the Calabar or Cross river, in a straight line towards the centre of the town of Yola, on the Benue river. Yola itself, with a radiusGermany in west Central Africa. of some 3 m., was left in the British sphere, and the German boundary followed the circle eastwards from the point of intersection as it neared Yola until it met the Benue river. From that point it crossed the river to the intersection of the 13th degree of longitude with the 10th degree of north latitude, and then made direct for a point on the southern shore of Lake Chad “situated 35 minutes east of the meridian of Kuka.” By this agreement the British government withdrew from a considerable section of the upper waters of the Benue with which the Royal Niger Company had entered into relations. The limit of Germany’s possible extension eastwards was fixed at the basin of the river Shari, and Darfur, Kordofan and the Bahr-el-Ghazal were to be excluded from her sphere of influence. The object of Great Britain in making the sacrifice she did was two-fold. By satisfying Germany’s desire for a part of Lake Chad a check was put on French designs on the Benue region, while by recognizing the central Sudan (Wadai, &c.) in the German sphere, a barrier was interposed to the advance of France from the Congo to the Nile. This last object was not attained, inasmuch as Germany in coming to terms with France as to the southern and eastern limits of Cameroon abandoned her claims to the central Sudan. She had already, on the 24th of December 1885, signed a protocol with France fixing her southern frontier, where it was coterminous with the French Congo colony. But to the east German explorers were crossing the track of French explorers from the northern bank of the Ubangi, and the need for an agreement was obvious. Accordingly, on the 4th of February 1894, a protocol—which, some weeks later, was confirmed by a convention—was signed at Berlin, by which France accepted the presence of Germany on Lake Chad as a fait accompli and effected the best bargain she could by making the left bank of the Shari river, from its outlet into Lake Chad to the 10th parallel of north latitude, the eastern limit of German extension. From this point the boundary line went due west some 230 m., then turned south, and with various indentations joined the south-eastern frontier, which had been slightly extended so as to give Germany access to the Sanga river—a tributary of the Congo. Thus, early in 1894, the German Cameroon colony had reached fairly definite limits. In 1908 another convention, modifying the frontier, gave Germany a larger share of the Sanga, while France, among other advantages, gained the left bank of the Shari to 10° 40′ N.
The German Togoland settlements occupy a narrow strip of
the Guinea coast, some 35 m. only in length, wedged in
between the British Gold Coast and French Dahomey. At first
France was inclined to dispute Germany’s claims to Little
Popo and Porto Seguro; but in December 1885 the French
government acknowledged the German protectorate over these
of Germany from the Niger. places, and the boundary between French and German territory, which runs north from the coast to the 11th decree of latitude, was laid down by the Franco-German convention of the 12th of July 1897. The fixing of the 11th parallel as the northern boundary of German expansion towards the interior was not accomplished without some sacrifice of German ambitions. Having secured an opening on Lake Chad for her Cameroon colony, Germany was anxious to obtain a footing on the middle Niger for Togoland. German expeditions reached Gando, one of the tributary states of the Sokoto empire on the middle Niger, and, notwithstanding the existence of prior treaties with Great Britain, sought to conclude agreements with the sultan of that country. But this German ambition conflicted both with the British and the French designs in West Africa, and eventually Germany had to be content with the 11th parallel as her northern frontier. On the west the Togoland frontier on the coast was fixed in July 1886 by British and German commissioners at 1° 10′ E. longitude, and its extension towards the interior laid down for a short distance. A curious feature in the history of its prolongation was the establishment in 1888 of a neutral zone wherein neither power was to seek to acquire protectorates nor exclusive influence. It was not until November 1899 that, as part of the Samoa settlement, this neutral zone was partitioned between the two powers and the frontier extended to the 11th parallel.
The story of the struggle between France and Great Britain in West Africa may roughly be divided into two sections, the first dealing with the Coast colonies, the second dealing with the struggle for the middle Niger and Lake Chad. As regards the Coast colonies, France was Anglo-French rivalry in West Africa. wholly successful in her design of isolating all Great Britain’s separate possessions in that region, and of securing for herself undisputed possession of the upper Niger and of the countries lying within the great bend of that river. When the British government awoke to the consciousness of what was at stake France had obtained too great a start. French governors of the Senegal had succeeded, before the Berlin conference, in establishing forts on the upper Niger, and the advantage thus gained was steadily pursued. Every winter season French posts were pushed farther and farther along the river, or in the vast regions watered by the southern tributaries of the Senegal and Niger rivers. This ceaseless activity met with its reward. Great Britain found herself compelled to acknowledge accomplished facts and to conclude agreements with France, which left her colonies mere coast patches, with a very limited extension towards the interior. On the 10th of August 1889 an agreement was signed by which the Gambia colony and protectorate was confined to a narrow strip of territory on both banks of the river for about 200 m. from the sea. In June 1882 and in August 1889 provisional agreements were made with France fixing the western and northern limits of Sierra Leone, and commissioners were appointed to trace the line of demarcation agreed upon by the two governments. But the commissioners failed to agree, and on the 21st of January 1895 a fresh agreement was made, the boundary being subsequently traced by a mixed commission. Sierra Leone, as now definitely constituted, has a coast-line of about 180 m. and a maximum extension towards the interior of some 200 m.
At the date of the Berlin conference the present colonies of Southern Nigeria and the Gold Coast constituted a single colony under the title of the Gold Coast colony, but on the 13th of January 1886 the territory comprised under that title was erected into two separate colonies—Lagos and the Gold Coast (the name of the former being changed in February 1906 to the colony of Southern Nigeria). The coast limits of the new Gold Coast colony were declared to extend from 5° W. to 2° E., but these limits were subsequently curtailed by agreements with France and Germany. The arrangements that fixed the eastern frontier of the Gold Coast colony and its hinterland have already been stated in connexion with German Togoland. On the western frontier it marches with the French colony of the Ivory Coast, and in July 1893, after an unsuccessful attempt to achieve the same end by an agreement concluded in 1889, the frontier was defined from the neighbourhood of the Tano lagoon and river of the same name, to the 9th degree of north latitude. In August 1896, following the destruction of the Ashanti power and the deportation of King Prempeh, as a result of the second Ashanti campaign, a British protectorate was declared over the whole of the Ashanti territories and a resident was installed at Kumasi. But no northern limit had been fixed by the 1893 agreement beyond the 9th parallel, and the countries to the north—Gurunsi (Grusi), Mossi and Gurma—were entered from all sides by rival British, French and German expeditions. The conflicting claims established by these rival expeditions may, however, best be considered in connexion with the struggle for supremacy on the middle Niger and in the Chad region, to which it is now necessary to turn.
A few days before the meeting of the Berlin conference Sir George Goldie had succeeded in buying up all the French interests on the lower Niger. The British company’s influence had at that date been extended by treaties with the native chiefs up the main Niger stream to its junction with the Benue, and some distance along this latter river But the great Fula states of the central Sudan were still outside European influence, and this fact did not escape attention in Germany. German merchants had been settled for some years on the coast, and one of them, E. R. Flegel, had displayed great interest in, and activity on, the river. He recognized that in the densely populated states of the middle Niger, Sokoto and Gando, and in Bornu to the west of Lake Chad, there was a magnificent field for Germany’s new-born colonizing zeal. The German African Company and the German Colonial Society listened eagerly to Flegel’s proposals, and in April 1885 he left Berlin on a mission to the Fula states of Sokoto and Gando. But it was impossible to keep his intentions entirely secret, and the (British) National African Company had no desire to see the French rivals, whom they had with so much difficulty dislodged from the river, replaced by the even more troublesome German. Accordingly Joseph Thomson, the young Scottish explorer, was sent out to the Niger, and had the satisfaction of concluding on the 1st of June 1885 a treaty with “Umoru, King of the Mussulmans of the Sudan and Sultan of Sokoto,” which practically secured the whole of the trading rights and the control of the sultan’s foreign relations to the British company. Thomson concluded a similar treaty with the sultan of Gando, so as to provide against the possibility of its being alleged that Gando was an independent state and not subject to the suzerainty of the sultan of Sokoto. As Thomson descended the river with his treaties, he met Flegel going up the river, with bundles of German flags and presents for the chiefs. The German government continued its efforts to secure a footing on the lower Niger until the fall of Prince Bismarck from power in March 1890, when opposition ceased, and on the failure of the half-hearted attempt made later to establish relations with Gando from Togoland, Germany dropped out of the competition for theThe Niger Company granted a charter. western Sudan and left the field to France and Great Britain. After its first great success the National African Company renewed its efforts to obtain a charter from the British government, and on the 10th of July 1886 the charter was granted, and the company became “The Royal Niger Company, chartered and limited.” In June of the previous year a British protectorate had been proclaimed over the whole of the coast from the Rio del Rey to the Lagos frontier, and as already stated, on the 13th of January 1886 the Lagos settlements had been separated from the Gold Coast and erected into a separate colony. It may be convenient to state here that the western boundary of Lagos with French territory (Dahomey) was determined in the Anglo-French agreement of the 10th of August 1889, “as far as the 9th degree of north latitude, where it shall stop.” Thus both in the Gold Coast hinterland and in the Lagos hinterland a door was left wide open to the north of the 9th parallel.
Notwithstanding her strenuous efforts, France, in her advance down the Niger from Senegal, did not succeed in reaching Sego on the upper Niger, a considerable distance above Timbuktu, until the winter of 1890–1891, and the rapid advance of British influence up the river raised serious fears lest the Royal Niger Company should reach Timbuktu before France could forestall her. It was, no doubt, this consideration that induced the French government to consent to the insertion in the agreement of the 5th of August 1890, by which Great Britain recognized France’s protectorate over Madagascar, of the following article:
The Government of Her Britannic Majesty recognizes the sphere of influence of France to the south of her Mediterranean possessions up to a line from Say on the Niger to Barrua on Lake Chad, drawn m such a manner as to comprise in the sphere of action of the Niger Company all that fairly belongs to the kingdom of Sokoto; the line to be determined by the commissioners to be appointed.
The commissioners never were in fact appointed, and the proper meaning to be attached to this article subsequently became a subject of bitter controversy between the two countries. An examination of the map of West Africa will show what possibilities of trouble were left open at the end of 1890 by the various agreements concluded up to that date. From Say on the Niger to where the Lagos frontier came to an abrupt stop in 9° N. there was no boundary line between the French and British spheres of influence. To the north of the Gold Coast and of the French Ivory Coast colony the way was equally open to Great Britain and to France, while the vagueness of the Say-Barrua line left an opening of which France was quick to avail herself. Captain P. L. Monteil, who was despatched by the French government to West Africa in 1890, immediately after the conclusion of the August agreement, did not hesitate to pass well to the south of the Say-Barrua line, and to attempt to conclude treaties with chiefs who were, beyond all question, within the British sphere. Still farther south, on the Benue river, the two expeditions of Lieutenant Mizon—in 1890 and 1892—failed to do any real harm to British interests. In 1892 an event happened which had an important bearing on the future course of the dispute. After a troublesome war with Behanzin king of to the native state of Dahomey, France annexed some portion of DahomeyanFrench advance to Timbuktu. territory on the coast, and declared a protectorate over the rest of the kingdom. Thus was removed the barrier which had up to that time prevented France from pushing her way Nigerwards from her possessions on the Slave Coast, as well as from the upper Niger and the Ivory Coast. Henceforth her progress from all these directions was rapid, and in particular Timbuktu was occupied in the last days of 1893.
In 1894 it appears to have been suddenly realized in France
that, for the development of the vast regions which she was
placing under her protection in West Africa, it was extremely
desirable that she should obtain free access to the navigable
portions of the Niger, if not on the left bank, from which she
was excluded by the Say-Barrua agreement, then on the right
bank, where the frontier had still to be fixed by international
agreement. In the neighbourhood of Bussa there is a long
stretch of the river so impeded by rapids that navigation is
practically impossible, except in small boats and at considerable
risk. Below these rapids France had no foothold on the river,
both banks from Bussa to the sea being within the British
sphere. In 1890 the Royal Niger Company had concluded a treaty
with the emir and chiefs of Bussa (or Borgu); but the French
declared that the real paramount chief of Borgu was not the
king of Bussa, but the king of Nikki, and three expeditions
were despatched in hot haste to Nikki to take the king under
French protection. Sir George Goldie, however, was not to be
baffled. While maintaining the validity of the earlier treaty
with Bussa, he despatched Captain (afterwards General Sir) F.
D. Lugard to Nikki, and Lugard was successful in distancing
all his French competitors by several days, reaching Nikki
on the 5th of November 1894 and concluding a treaty with the
king and chiefs. The French expeditions, which were in great
strength, did not hesitate on their arrival to compel the
king to execute fresh treaties with France, and with these in
their possession they returned to Dahomey. Shortly afterwards
a fresh act of aggression was committed. On the 13th of February 1895 a
French officer, Commandant Toutée, arrived on the right bank
of the Niger opposite Bajibo and built a fort. His presence
there was notified to the Royal Niger Company, who protested
to the British government against this invasion of their territory.
Lord Rosebery, who was then foreign minister, at once made
inquiries in Paris, and received the assurance that Commandant
Toutée was “a private traveller.” Eventually Commandant
Toutée was ordered to withdraw, and the fort was occupied
by the Royal Niger Company’s troops. Commandant Toutée
subsequently published the official instructions from the French
government under which he had acted. It was thought that the
recognition of the British claims, involved in the withdrawal of
Commandant Toutée, had marked the final abandonment by
France of the attempt to establish herself on the navigable
portions of the Niger below Bussa, but in 1897 the attempt was
renewed in the most determined manner. In February of that
year a French force suddenly occupied Bussa, and this act was
quickly followed by the occupation of Gomba and Illo higher up
the river. In November 1897 Nikki was occupied. The situation
on the Niger had so obviously been outgrowing the capacity of a
chartered company that for some time before these occurrences
the assumption of responsibility for the whole of the Niger region The Franco-British settlement
of 1898. by the imperial authorities had been practically decided on; and early in 1898 Lugard was sent out to the Niger with a number of imperial officers to raise a local force in preparation for the contemplated change. The advance of the French forces from the south and west was the signal for an advance of British troops from the Niger, from Lagos and from the Gold Coast protectorate. The situation thus created was extremely serious. The British and French flags were flying in close proximity, in some cases in the same village. Meanwhile the diplomatists were busy in London and in Paris, and in the latter capital a commission sat for many months to adjust the conflicting claims. Fortunately, by the tact and forbearance of the officers on both sides, no local incident occurred to precipitate a collision, and on the 14th of June 1898 a convention was signed by Sir Edmund Monson and M. G. Hanotaux which practically completed the partition of this part of the continent.
The settlement effected was in the nature of a compromise. France withdrew from Bussa, Gomba and Illo, the frontier line west of the Niger being drawn from the 9th parallel to a point ten miles, as the crow flies, above Giri, the port of Illo. France was thus shut out from the navigable portion of the middle and lower Niger; but for purely commercial purposes Great Britain agreed to lease to France two small plots of land on the river-the one on the right bank between Leaba and the mouth of the Moshi river, the other at one of the mouths of the Niger. By accepting this line Great Britain abandoned Nikki and a great part of Borgu as well as some part of Gando to France. East of the Niger the Say-Barrua line was modified in favour of France, which gained parts of both Sokoto and Bornu where they meet the southern edge of the Sahara. In the Gold Coast hinterland the French withdrew from Wa, and Great Britain abandoned all claim to Mossi, though the capital of the latter country, together with a further extensive area in the territory assigned to both powers, was declared to be equally free, so far as trade and navigation were concerned, to the subjects and protected persons of both nationalities. The western boundary of the Gold Coast was prolonged along the Black Volta as far as latitude 11° N., and this parallel was followed with slight deflexions to the Togoland frontier. In consequence of the acute crisis which shortly afterwards occurred between France and Great Britain on the upper Nile, the ratification of this agreement was delayed until after the conclusion of the Fashoda agreement of March 1899 already referred to. In 1900 the two patches on the Niger leased to France were selected by commissioners representing the two countries, and in the same year the Anglo-French frontier from Lagos to the west bank of the Niger was delimited.
East of the Niger the frontier, even as modified in 1898, failed to satisfy the French need for a practicable route to Lake Chad, and in the convention of the 8th of April 1904, to which reference has been made under Egypt and Morocco, it was agreed, as part of the settlement of the French shoreFurther concessions to France. question in Newfoundland, to deflect the frontier line more to the south. The new boundary was described at some length, but provision was made for its modification in points of detail on the return of the commissioners engaged in surveying the frontier region. In 1906 an agreement was reached on all points, and the frontier at last definitely settled, sixteen years after the Say-Barrua line had been fixed. This revision of the Niger-Chad frontier did not, however, represent the only territorial compensation received by France in West Africa in connexion with the settlement of the Newfoundland question. By the same convention of April 1904 the British government consented to modify the frontier between Senegal and the Gambia colony “so as to give to France Yarbutenda and the lands and landing-places belonging to that locality,” and further agreed to cede to France the tiny group of islands off the coast of French Guinea known as the Los Islands.
Meantime the conclusion of the 1898 convention had left both the British and the French governments free to devote increased attention to the subdivision and control of their West African possessions. On the 1st of January 1900 the imperial authorities assumed direct responsibility for the whole of the territories of the Royal Niger Company, which became henceforth a purely commercial undertaking. The Lagos protectorate was extended northwards; the Niger Coast protectorate, likewise with extended frontiers, became Southern Nigeria; while the greater part of the territories formerly administered by the company were constituted into the protectorate of Northern Nigeria—all three administrations being directly under the Colonial Office. In February 1906 the administration of the Southern Nigerian protectorate was placed under that of Lagos at the same time as the name of the latter was changed to the Colony of Southern Nigeria, this being a step towards the eventual amalgamation of all three dependencies under one governor or Organization of the British and French protectorates. governor-general. In French West Africa changes in the internal frontiers have been numerous and important. The coast colonies have all been increased in size at the expense of the French Sudan, which has vanished from the maps as an administrative entity. There are carved out of the territories comprised in what is officially known as French West Africa five colonies—Senegal, French Guinea, the Ivory Coast, Dahomey and the Upper Senegal and Niger, this last being entirely cut off from the sea—and the civil territory of Mauritania. To the colony of the Upper Senegal and Niger is attached the military territory of the Niger, embracing the French Sahara up to the limit of the Algerian sphere of influence. Not only are all these divisions of French West Africa connected territorially, but administratively they are united under a governor-general. Similarly the French Congo territories have been divided into three colonies—the Gabun, the Middle Congo and the Ubangi-Shari-Chad—all united administratively under a commissioner-general.
There are, around the coast, numerous islands or groups of islands, which are regarded by geographers as outliers of the African mainland. The majority of these African islands were occupied by one or other of the European powers long before the period of continental partition.Ownership of the African Islands. The Madeira Islands to the west of Morocco, the Bissagos Islands, off the Guinea coast, and Prince’s Island and St Thomas’ Island, in the Gulf of Guinea, are Portuguese possessions of old standing; while in the Canary Islands and Fernando Po Spain possesses remnants of her ancient colonial empire which are a more valuable asset than any she has acquired in recent times on the mainland. St Helena in the Atlantic, Mauritius and some small groups north of Madagascar in the Indian Ocean, are British possessions acquired long before the opening of the last quarter of the 19th century. Zanzibar, Pemba and some smaller islands which the sultan was allowed to retain were, as has already been stated, placed under British protection in 1890, and the island of Sokotra was placed under the “gracious favour and protection” of Great Britain on the 23rd of April 1886. France’s ownership of Reunion dates back to the 17th century, but the Comoro archipelago was not placed under French protection until April 1886. None of these islands, with the exception of the Zanzibar group, have, however, materially affected the partition of the continent, and they need not be enumerated in the table which follows. But the important island of Madagascar stands in a different category, both on account of its size and because it was during the period under review that it passed through the various stages which led to its becoming a French colony. The first step was the placing of the foreign relations of the island under French control, which was effected by the treaty of the 17th of December 1885, after the Franco-Malagasy war that had broken out in 1883. In 1890 Great Britain and Germany recognized a French protectorate over the island, but the Hova government declined to acquiesce in this view, and in May 1895 France sent an expedition to enforce her claims. The capital was occupied on the 30th of September in the same year, and on the day following Queen Ranavalona signed a convention recognizing the French protectorate. In January 1896 the island was declared a French possession, and on the 6th of August was declared to be a French colony. In February 1897 the last vestige of ancient rule was swept away by the deportation of the queen.
Thus in its broad outlines the partition of Africa was begun and ended in the short space of a quarter of a century. There are still many finishing touches to be put to the structure. The southern frontiers of Morocco and Tripoli remain undefined, while the mathematical lines by which the spheres of influence of the powers were separated one from the other are being variously modified on the do ut des principle as they come to be surveyed and as the effective occupation of the continent progresses. Much labour is necessary before the actual area of Africa and its subdivisions can be accurately determined, but in the following table the figures are at least approximately correct. Large areas of the spheres assigned to different European powers have still to be brought under European control; but this work is advancing by rapid strides.
|Natal and Zululand||35,371|
|Transvaal and Swaziland||117,732|
|Orange River Colony||50,392|
|British East Africa Protectorate||240,000|
|Southern Nigeria (colony and protectorate)||80,000|
|Gold Coast and hinterland||82,000|
| Leone (colony and protectorate)||34,000|
|Total British Africa||2,101,411|
|Egypt and Libyan Desert||650,000|
|Algeria and Algerian Sahara||945,000|
|French West Africa—|
|Upper Senegal and Niger, and
Mauritania (including French
West African Sahara)
|Total French Africa||3,866,950|
|Total German Africa||910,150|
|Total Italian Africa||200,000|
|Total Portuguese Africa||787,500|
|Rio de Oro||70,000|
|Muni River Settlements||9,800|
|Total Spanish Africa||79,800|
|Tripoli and Benghazi||400,000|
|Total Independent Africa||613,000|
Thus, collecting the totals, the result of the “scramble” has been to divide Africa among the powers as follows:–
|British Africa||. . . . . . . . . . .||2,101,411|
|Egyptian Africa||. . . . . . . . . . .||1,600,000|
|French Africa||. . . . . . . . . . .||3,866,950|
|German Africa||. . . . . . . . . . .||910,150|
|Italian Africa||. . . . . . . . . . .||200,000|
|Portuguese Africa||. . . . . . . . . . .||787,500|
|Spanish Africa||. . . . . . . . . . .||79,800|
|Belgian Africa||. . . . . . . . . . .||900,000|
|Turkish Africa||. . . . . . . . . . .||400,000|
|Independent Africa||. . . . . . . . . .||613,000|
(J. S. K.)
VI. Exploration and Survey Since 1875
In giving the history of the partition of the continent, the later work of exploration, except where, as in the case of de Brazza’s expeditions, it had direct political consequences, has of necessity not been told. The results achieved during and after the period of partition may now be indicated. Stanley’s great journey down the Congo in 1875–1876 initiated a new era in African exploration. The numbers of travellers soon became so great that the once marvellous feat of crossing the continent from sea to sea became common. With increased knowledge and much ampler means of communication trans-African travel now presents few difficulties. While d'Anville and other cartographers of the 18th century, by omitting all that was uncertain, had left a great blank on the map, the work accomplished since 1875 has filled it with authentic topographical details. Moreover surveys of high accuracy have been made at several points. As the work of exploration and survey progressed journeys of startling novelty became impossible–save in the eastern Sahara, where the absence of water and boundless wastes of sand render exploration more difficult, perhaps, than in any other region of the globe. Within their respective spheres of influence each power undertook detailed surveys, and the most solid of the latest accessions to knowledge have resulted from the labours of hard-working colonial officials toiling individually in obscurity. Their work it is impossible here to recognize adequately; the following lines record only the more obvious achievements.
The relation of the Congo basin to the neighbouring river systems was brought out by the journeys of many travellers. In 1877 an important expedition was sent out by the Portuguese government under Serpa Pinto, Brito Capello and Roberto Ivens for the exploration of the interior of Angola. Work in the Congo basin.The first named made his way by the head-streams of the Kubango to the upper Zambezi, which he descended to the Victoria Falls, proceeding thence to Pretoria and Durban. Capello and Ivens confined their attention to the south-west Congo basin, where they disproved the existence of Lake Aquilunda, which had figured on the maps of that region since the 16th century. In a later journey (1884–1885) Capello and Ivens crossed the continent from Mossamedes to the mouth of the Zambezi, adding considerably to the knowledge of the borderlands between the upper Congo and the upper Zambezi. More important results were obtained by the German travellers Paul Pogge and Hermann von Wissmann, who (1880–1882) passed through previously unknown regions beyond Muata Yanvo’s kingdom, and reached the upper Congo at Nyangwe, whence Wissmann made his way to the east coast. In 1884–1885 a German expedition under Wissmann solved the most important geographical problem relating to the southern Congo basin by descending the Kasai, the largest southern tributary, which, contrary to expectation, proved to unite with the Kwango and other streams before joining the main river. Further additions to the knowledge of the Congo tributaries were made at the same time by the Rev. George Grenfell, a Baptist missionary, who (accompanied in 1885 by K. von Francois) made several voyages in the steamer “Peace,” especially up the great Ubangi, ultimately proved to be the lower course of the Welle, discovered in 1870 by Schweinfurth.
In East as in West Africa operations were started by agents of the Belgian committee, but with less success than on the Congo. The first new journey of importance on this side was made (1878–1880) on behalf of the British African Exploration Committee by Joseph Thomson, who after the Opening up East Africa.death of his leader, Keith Johnston, made his way from the coast to the north end of Nyasa, thence to Tanganyika, on both sides of which he broke new ground, sighting the north end of Lake Rukwa on the east. In 1882–1884 the French naval lieutenant Victor Giraud proceeded by the north of Nyasa to Lake Bangweulu, of which he made the first fairly correct map. North of the Zanzibar-Tanganyika route a large area of new ground was opened in 1883–1884 by Joseph Thomson, who traversed the whole length of the Masai country to Lake Baringo and Victoria Nyanza, shedding the first clear light on the great East African rift-valley and neighbouring highlands, including Mounts Kenya and Elgon. A great advance in the region between Victoria Nyanza and Abyssinia was made in 1887–1889 by the Austrians, Count Samuel Teleki and Lieut. Ludwig von Hohnel, who discovered the large Basso Norok, now known as Lake Rudolf, till then only vaguely indicated on the map as Samburu. At this time Somaliland was being opened up by English and Italian travellers. In 1883 the brothers F. L. and W. D. James penetrated from Berbera to the Webi Shebeli; in 1892 Vittorio Bottego (afterwards murdered in the Abyssinian highlands) started from Berbera and reached the upper Juba, which he explored to its source. The first person, however, to cross from the Gulf of Aden to the Indian Ocean was an American, A. Donaldson Smith, who in 1894–1895 explored the headstreams of the Webi Shebeli and also explored the Omo, the feeder of Lake Rudolf.
In the region north-west of Victoria Nyanza the greatest additions to geographical knowledge were made by H. M. Stanley in his last expedition, undertaken for the relief of Emin Pasha. The expedition set out in 1887 by way of the Congo to carry supplies to the governor of the old Egyptian Equatorial province. The route lay up the Aruwimi, the principal tributary of the Congo from the north-east, by which the expedition made its way, encountering immense difficulties, through the great equatorial forest, the character and extent of which were thus for the first time brought to light. The return was made to the east coast, and resulted in the discovery of the great snowy range of Ruwenzori or Runsoro, and the confirmation of the existence of a third Nile lake discharging its waters into the Albert Nyanza by the Semliki river. A further discovery was that of a large bay, hitherto unsuspected, forming the south-west corner of the Victoria Nyanza.
Great activity was also displayed in completing the work of earlier explorers in North and West Africa. Morocco was in 1883–1884 the scene of important explorations by de Foucauld, a Frenchman who, disguised as a Jew, crossed and re-crossed the Atlas and supplied theExpeditions in North and West Africa. first trustworthy information as to the orography of many parts of the chain. In 1887–1889 Louis Gustave Binger, a French officer, made a great journey through the countries enclosed in the Niger bend, and in 1890–1892 Col. P. F. Monteil went from St Louis to Say, on the Niger, thence through Sokoto to Bornu and Lake Chad, whence he crossed the Sahara to Tripoli. Meantime explorers had been busy in the region between Lake Chad, the Gulf of Guinea and the Congo. The Sanga, one of the principal northern tributaries of the Congo, was reached from the north by Lieut. Louis Mizon, a French naval officer, who drew the first line of communication between the Benue and the Congo (1890–1892). In 1890 Paul Crampel, who in the previous year had explored north of the Ogowé, undertook a great expedition from the Ubangi to the Shari, but was attacked and killed, with several of his companions, on the borders of the Bagirmi. Several other expeditions followed, and in 1806 Emile Gentil reached the Shari, launched a steamer on its waters and pushed on to Lake Chad. Early in 1900 Lake Chad was also reached by F. Foureau, a French traveller, who had already devoted twelve years to the exploration of the Sahara and who on this occasion had crossed the desert from Algeria and had reached the lake via Air and Zinder.
The last ten years of the 19th century also witnessed many interesting expeditions in east Central Africa. In 1891 Emin Pasha, accompanied by Dr F. Stuhlmann, made his way south of Victoria Nyanza to the western Nile lakes, visiting for the first time the southern and Lakes and mountains of Equatorial Africa. western shores of Albert Edward. Stuhlmann also ascended the Ruwenzori range to a height of over 13,000 ft. In the same year Dr O. Baumann, who had already done good work in Usambara, near the coast, started on a more extended journey through the region of steppes between Kilimanjaro and Victoria Nyanza, afterwards exploring the headstreams of the Kagera, the ultimate sources of the Nile. In the steppe region referred to he discovered two new lakes, Manyara and Eiassi, occupying parts of the East African valley system. This region was again traversed in 1893–1894 by Count von Gotzen, who continued his route westwards to Lake Kivu, north of Tanganyika, which, though heard of by Speke over thirty years before, had never yet been visited. He also reached for the first time the line of volcanic peaks north of Kivu, one of which he ascended, afterwards crossing the great equatorial forest by a new route to the Congo and the west coast. Valuable scientific work was done in 1893 by Dr J. W. Gregory, who ascended Mount Kenya to a height of 16,000 ft. In 1893–1894 Scott Elliot reached Ruwenzori by way of Uganda, returning by Tanganyika and Nyasa, and in 1896 C. W. Hobley made the circuit of the great mountain Elgon, north-east of Victoria Nyanza. In 1899 Mount Kenya was ascended to its summit by a party under H. J. Mackinder. The exploration of Mount Kilimanjaro has been the special work of Dr Hans Meyer, who first directed his attention to it in 1887.
The region south of Abyssinia proper and north of Lake Rudolf, being largely the basin of the Sobat tributary of the Nile, was traversed by several explorers, among whom may be mentioned Capt. M. S. Wellby, who in 1898–1899 explored the chain of small lakes in south-east Abyssinia, pushed on to Lake Rudolf, and thence traversed hitherto unknown country to the lower Sobat. Donaldson Smith crossed from Berbera to the Nile by Lake Rudolf in 1899–1900, and Major H. H. Austin commanded two survey parties between the Anglo-Egyptian Sudan and Lake Rudolf during 1899–1901. Meantime in south Central Africa the Barotse country had been partly made known by the missionary F. Coillard, who settled there in 1884, while the middle and upper Zambezi basin were scientifically explored and mapped by Major A. St H. Gibbons and his assistants in 1895–1896 and 1898–1900. In the same period the Congo-Zambezi watershed was traced by a Belgian officer, Capt. C. Lemaire, who had ascended one of the upper tributaries of the Kasai.
In the early years of the 19th century the first recorded crossing of Africa took place. That crossing and all subsequent crossings had been made either from west to east or east to west. The first journey through the whole length of the continent was accomplished in the two last years of the century when a young Englishman, E. S. Grogan, starting from Cape Town reached the Mediterranean by way of the Zambezi, the central line of lakes and the Nile. Other travellers followed in Grogan’s footsteps, among the first, Major Gibbons.
Additions to topographical knowledge were made from about 1890 onwards by the international commissions which traced the frontiers of the protectorates of the European powers. On several occasions the labours of the commissions disclosed errors of importance in the Work of international commissions and surveying partiesmaps upon which international agreements had been based. Among those which yielded valuable results were the Anglo-French commission which in 1903 traced the Nigerian frontier from the Niger to Lake Chad, and the Anglo-German commission which in 1903–1904 fixed the Cameroon boundary between Yola, on the Benue, and Lake Chad. These expeditions and French surveys in the same region during 1902–1903 resulted in the discovery that Lake Chad had greatly decreased in area since the middle of the 19th century. In 1903 a French officer, Capt. E. Lenfant, succeeded in establishing the fact of a connexion between the Niger and Chad basins. Subsequently Lenfant explored the western basin of the Shari, determining (1907) the true upper branch of that river.
In East Africa a German-Congolese commission surveyed (1901–1902) Lake Kivu and the volcanic region north of the lake, R. Kandt making a special study of Kivu and the Kagera sources, while the Anglo-German boundary commission of 1902–1904 surveyed the valley of the lower Kagera, and fixed the exact position of Albert Edward Nyanza. Much new information concerning the border-lands of British East Africa and Abyssinia between Lake Rudolf and the lower Juba was obtained by the survey executed in 1902–1903 by a British officer, Captain P. Maud.
While political requirements led to the exact determination of frontiers, administrative needs forced the governments concerned to take in hand the survey of the countries under their protection. Before the close of the first decade of the 20th century tolerably accurate maps had been made of the German colonies, of a considerable part of West Africa, the Algerian Sahara and the Anglo-Egyptian Sudan, mainly by military officers. A British naval officer, Commander B. Whitehouse, mapped the entire coastdine of Victoria Nyanza. Government and railway surveys apart, the chief points of interest for explorers during 1904–1906 were the Ruwenzori range and the connexion of the basin of Lake Chad with the Niger and Congo systems. Lieut. Boyd Alexander was the leader of a party which during the years named surveyed Lake Chad and a considerable part of eastern Nigeria, returning to England via the Shari, the Ubangi and the Nile. Two members of the party, Capt. Claud Alexander and Capt. G. B. Gosling, died during the expedition. The Ruwenzori Mountains proved a great source of attraction. Sir H. H. Johnston had in 1900 ascended beyond the snow-line to 14,800 ft.; in 1903 Dr J. J. David had reached from the west to a height he believed to exceed 16,000 ft.; and in the same year Capt. T. T. Behrens, of the Anglo-German Uganda boundary commission, fixed the highest summit at 16,619 ft. During 1904–1906 some half-dozen expeditions were at work in the region. That of the duke of the Abruzzi was the most successful. In the summer of 1906 the duke or members of his party climbed all the highest peaks, none of which reaches 17,000 ft., and determined the main lines of the watershed. Major Powell-Cotton, a British officer who had previously done good work in Abyssinia and British East Africa, spent 1905–1906 in a detailed examination of the Lado enclave and the country west of Ruwenzori and Albert and Albert Edward lakes. This expedition was specially fruitful in additions to zoological knowledge.
Archaeological research, stimulated by the reports of Thomas Shaw, British consular chaplain at Algiers in 1719–1731, by James Bruce’s exploration, 1765–1767, of the ruins in Barbary, and by the French conquest of Egypt in 1798, has been systematically carried out in North Africa since the middle of the 19th century (see Egypt and Africa, Roman.) In South Africa the first thorough examination of the ruins in Rhodesia was made in 1905, when Randall-MacIver demonstrated that the great Zimbabwe and similar buildings were of medieval or post-medieval origin. (F. R. C.)
VII. Social and Economic Conditions
The eagerness with which the nations of western Europe partitioned Africa between them was due, as has been seen, more to the necessities of commerce than to mere land hunger. Yet, except in the north and south temperate regions, the commercial intercourse of the continent with the rest of the world had been until the closing years of the 19th century of insignificant proportions. In addition to slaves, furnished by the continent from the earliest times, a certain amount of gold and ivory was exported from the tropical regions, but no other product supplied the material for a flourishing trade with those parts. To their Asiatic and European invaders the Africans indeed owed many creature comforts—the introduction of maize, rice, the sugar cane, the orange, the lemon and the lime, cloves, tobacco and many other vegetable products, the camel, the horse and other animals—but invaluable to Africa as were these gifts they led to little development of commerce. The continent continued in virtual isolation from the great trade movements of the Causes of isolation. world, an isolation due not so much to its poverty in natural resources, as to the special circumstances which likewise caused so large a part of the continent to remain so long a terra incognita. The principal drawbacks may be summarized as: (1) the absence of means of communication with the interior; (2) the unhealthiness of the coast-lands; (3) the small productive activity of the natives; (4) the effects of the slave trade in discouraging legitimate commerce. None of these causes is necessarily permanent, that most difficult to remove being the third; the negro races finding the means of existence easy have little incentive to toil. The first drawback has almost disappeared, and the building of railways and the placing of steamers on the rivers and lakes—a work continually progressing—renders it year by year easier for producer and consumer to come together. As to the second drawback, while the coast-lands in the tropics will always remain comparatively unhealthy, improved sanitation and the destruction of the malarial mosquito have rendered tolerable to Europeans regions formerly notorious for their deadly climate.
At various periods since the partition of the continent began, united action has been taken by the powers of Europe in the interests of African trade. The Berlin conference of 1884–1885 decreed freedom of navigation and trade on the Congo and the Niger, and the Anglo-Portuguese treaty of 1891 secured like privileges for the Zambezi. The Berlin conference likewise enacted that over a wide area of Central Africa—the conventional basin of the Congo—there should be complete freedom of trade, a freedom which later on was held to be infringed in the Congo State and French Congo by the granting to various companies proprietary rights in the disposal of the product of the soil. More important in their effect on the economic condition of the continent than the steps taken to ensure freedom of trade were the measures concerted by the powers for the suppression of the slave trade. The British government had for long borne the greater part of the burden of combating the slave trade on the east coast of Africa and in the Indian Ocean, but the changed conditions which resulted from the appearance of other European powers in Africa induced Lord Salisbury, then foreign secretary, to address, in the autumn of 1888, an invitation to the king of the Belgians to take the initiative in inviting a conference of the powers at Brussels to concert measures for “the gradual suppression of the Suppression of the slave trade. slave trade on the continent of Africa, and the immediate closing of all the external markets which it still supplies.” The conference assembled in November 1889, and on the 2nd of July 1890 a general act was signed subject to the ratification of the various governments represented, ratification taking place subsequently at different dates, and in the case of France with certain reservations. The general act began with a declaration of the means which the powers were of opinion might be most effectually adopted for “putting an end to the crimes and devastations engendered by the traffic in African slaves, protecting effectively the aboriginal populations of Africa, and ensuring for that vast continent the benefits of peace and civilization.” It proceeded to lay down certain rules and regulations of a practical character on the lines suggested. The act covers a wide field, and includes no fewer than a hundred separate articles. It established a zone “between the 20th parallel of north latitude, and the 22nd parallel of south latitude, and extending westward to the Atlantic and eastward to the Indian Ocean and its dependencies, comprising the islands adjacent to the coast as far as 100 nautical miles from the shore,” within which the importation of firearms and ammunition was forbidden except in certain specified cases, and within which also the powers undertook either to prohibit altogether the importation and manufacture of spirituous liquors, or to impose duties not below an agreed-on minimum. An elaborate series of rules was framed for the prevention of the transit of slaves by sea, the conditions on which European powers were to grant to natives the right to fly the flag of the protecting power, and regulating the procedure connected with the right of search on vessels flying a foreign flag. The Brussels Act was in effect a joint declaration by the signatory powers of their joint and several responsibility towards the African native, and notwithstanding the fact that many of its articles have proved difficult, if not impossible, of enforcement, the solemn engagement taken by Europe in the face of the world has undoubtedly exercised a material influence on the action of several of the powers. Moreover, with the increase of means of communication and the extension of effective European control, slave-raiding in the interior was largely checked and inter-tribal wars prevented, the natives being thus given security in the pursuit of trade and agriculture.
Other important factors in the economic as well as the social conditions of Africa are the advance in civilization made by the natives in several regions and the increase of the areas found suitable for white colonization. The advance in civilization among the natives, exemplified by the granting to them of political rights in such countries as Algeria and Cape Colony, leads directly to increased commercial activity; and commerce increases in a much greater degree when new countries—e.g. Rhodesia and British East Africa—become the homes of Europeans. Finally, in reviewing the chief factors which govern the commercial development of the continent, note must be taken of the sparsity of the population over the greater part of Africa, and the efforts made to supplement the insufficient and often ineffective native labour by the introduction of Asiatic labourers in various districts—of Indian coolies in Natal and elsewhere, and of Chinese for the gold mines of the Transvaal.
The resources of Africa may be considered under the head of: (1) jungle products; (2) cultivated products; (3) animal products; (4) minerals. Of the first named the most important are india-rubber and palm-oil. which in tropical Africa supply by far the largest items in the Chief economic resources.export list. The rubber-producing plants are found throughout the whole tropical belt, and the most important are creepers of the order Apocynaceae, especially various species of Landolphia (with which genus Vahea is now united). In East Africa Landolphia kirkii (Dyer) supplies the largest amount, though various other species are known. Forms of apparently wider distribution are L. hendelotii, which is found in the Bahr-el-Ghazal, and extends right across the continent to Senegambia; and L. (formerly Vahea) comorensis, which, including its variety L. florida, has the widest distribution of all the species, occurring in Upper and Lower Guinea, the whole of Central Africa, the east coast, the Comoro Islands and Madagascar. In parts of East Africa Clitandra orienitalis is a valuable rubber vine. In Lagos and elsewhere rubber is produced by the apocynaceous tree, Funtumia elastica, and in West Africa generally by various species of Ficus, some species of which are also found in East Africa. The rubber produced is somewhat inferior to that of South America, but this is largely due to careless methods of preparation. The great destruction of vines brought about by native methods of collection much reduced the supply in some districts, and rendered it necessary to take steps to preserve and cultivate the rubber-yielding plants. This has been done in many districts with usually encouraging results. Experiments have been made in the introduction of South American rubber plants, but opinions differ as to the prospects of success, as the plants in question seem to demand very definite conditions of soil and climate. The second product, palm-oil, is derived from a much more limited area than rubber, for although the oil palm is found throughout the greater part of West Africa, from 10° N. to 10° S., the great bulk of the export comes from the coast districts at the head of the Gulf of Guinea. A larger supply, equal to any market demand, could easily be obtained. A third valuable product is the timber supplied by the forest regions, principally in West Africa. It includes African teak or oak (Oldfieldia africana), excellent for shipbuilding; the durable odum of the Gold Coast (Chlorophora excelsa); African mahogany (Khaya senegalensis); ebony (Diospyros ebenum); camwood (Baphia nitida); and many other ornamental and dye woods. The timber industry on the west coast was long neglected, but since 1898 there have been large exports to Europe. In parts of East Africa the Podocarpus milanjianus, a conifer, is economically important. Valuable timber grows too in South Africa, including the yellow wood (Podocarpus), stinkwood (Ocotea), sneezewood or Cape ebony (Euclea) and ironwood.
Other vegetable products of importance are: Gum arabic, obtained from various species of acacia (especially A. senegal), the chief supplies of which are obtained from Senegambia and the steppe regions of North Africa (Kordofan, &c.); gum copal, a valuable resin produced by trees of the leguminous order, the best, known as Zanzibar or Mozambique copal, coming from the East African Trachylobium hornemannianum, and also found in a fossil state under the soil; kola nuts, produced chiefly in the coast-lands of Upper Guinea by a tree of the order Sterculiaceae (Kola acuminata); archil or orchilla, a dye-yielding lichen (Rocella tinctoria and triciformis) growing on trees and rocks in East Africa, the Congo basin, &c.; cork, the bark of the cork oak, which flourishes in Algeria; and alfa, a grass used in paper manufacture (Machrochloa tenacissima), growing in great abundance on the dry steppes of Algeria, Tripoli, &c. A product to which attention has been paid in Angola is the Almeidina gum or resin, derived from the juice of Euphorbia tirucalli.
The cultivated products include those of the tropical and warm temperate zones. Of the former, coffee is perhaps the most valuable indigenous plant. It grows wild in many parts, the home of one species being in Kaffa and other Galla countries south of Abyssinia, and of another in Liberia. The Abyssinian coffee is equal to the best produced in any other part of the world. Cultivation is, however, necessary to ensure the best results, and attention has been given to this in various European colonies. Plantations have been established in Angola, Nyasaland, German East Africa, Cameroon, the Congo Free State, &c.
Copra, the produce of the cocoa-nut palm, is supplied chiefly by Zanzibar and neighbouring parts of the east coast. Groundnuts, produced by the leguminous plant, Arachis hypogaea, are grown chiefly in West Africa, and the largest export is from Senegal and the Gambia; while Bambarra ground-nuts (Voandzeia subterranea) are very generally cultivated from Guinea to Natal. Cloves are extensively grown on Zanzibar and Pemba islands, Pemba being the chief source of the world’s supply of cloves. The chief drawbacks to the industry are the fluctuations of the yield of the trees, and the risk of over-production in good seasons.
Cotton grows wild in many parts of tropical Africa, and is exported in small quantities in the raw state; but the main export is from Egypt, which comes third among the world’s sources of supply of the article. It is also cultivated in West Africa—the industry in the Guinea coast colonies having been developed since the beginning of the 20th century—and in the Anglo-Egyptian Sudan, whence came the plants from which Egyptian cotton is grown. Sugar, which is the staple crop of Mauritius, and in a lesser degree of Reunion, is also produced in Natal, Egypt, and, to a certain extent, in Mozambique. Dates are grown in Tunisia and the Saharan oases, especially Tafilet; maize in Egypt, South Africa and parts of the tropical zone; wheat in Egypt, Algeria and the higher regions of Abyssinia; rice in Madagascar. Wine is largely exported from Algeria, and in a much smaller quantity from Cape Colony; fruit and vegetables from Algeria. Tobacco is widely grown on a small scale, but, except perhaps from Algeria, has not become an important article of export, though plantations have been established in various tropical colonies. The cultivation of cocoa has proved successful in the Gold Coast, Cameroon and other colonies, and in various districts the tea plant is cultivated. Indigo, though not originally an African product, has become naturalized and grows wild in many parts, while it is also cultivated on a small scale. The main difficulty in the way of tropical cultivation is the labour question, which has already been referred to.
Of animal products one of the most important is ivory, the largest export of which is from the Congo Free State. The diminution in the number of elephants with the opening up of the remoter districts must in time cause a falling-off in this export. Beeswax is obtained from various parts of the interior of West Africa, and from Madagascar. Raw hides are exported in large quantities from South Africa, as are also the wool and hair of the merino sheep and Angora goat. Both hides and wool are also exported from Algeria and Morocco, and hides from Abyssinia and Somaliland. Ostrich feathers are produced chiefly by the ostrich farms of Cape Colony, but some are also obtained from the steppes to the north of the Central Sudan. Live stock, principally sheep, is exported from Algeria and cattle from Morocco.
The exploited minerals of Africa are confined to a few districts, the resources of the continent in this respect being largely undeveloped. Since the discovery of gold in the Transvaal, particularly in the district known as the Rand (1885), the output has grown enormously, soMineral Wealth. that in 1898 the output of gold from South Africa was greater than from any other gold-field in the world. The Anglo-Boer War of 1899–1902 lost the Rand the leading position, but by 1905 the output—in that year over £20,800,000—was greater than it had ever been. The supply of gold from South Africa is roughly 25% of the world’s output. The gold-yielding formations extend northwards through Rhodesia. The Gold Coast is so named from the quantity of gold obtained there, and since the close of the 19th century the industry has developed largely in the hands of Europeans. In the Galla countries gold has long been an article of native commerce. It is also found in various parts of the Anglo-Egyptian Sudan and along the western shore of the Red Sea. Diamonds are found in large quantities in a series of beds known as the Kimberley shales, the principal mines being at Kimberley, Cape Colony. Diamonds are also found in Orange River Colony, while one of the richest diamond mines in the world—the Premier—is situated in the Transvaal near Pretoria. Some 80% of the world’s production of diamonds comes from South Africa. Copper is found in the west of Cape Colony, in German South-West Africa, and in the Katanga country in the southern Congo basin, where vast beds of copper ore exist. There are also extensive deposits of copper in the Broken Hill district of Northern Rhodesia. It also occurs in Morocco, Algeria, the Bahr-el-Ghazal, &c. Rich tin deposits have been found in the southern Congo basin and in Northern Rhodesia. Iron is found in Morocco, Algeria (whence there is an export trade), and is widely diffused, and worked by the natives, in the tropical zone. But the deposits are generally not rich. Coal is worked, principally for home consumption, in Cape Colony, Natal, the Transvaal, Orange River Colony, and in Rhodesia in the neighbourhood of the Zambezi. Coal deposits also exist in the German territory north of Lake Nyasa. Phosphates are exported from Algeria and Tunisia. Of other minerals which occur, but are little worked, zinc, lead and antimony are found in Algeria, lead and manganese in Cape Colony, plumbago in Sierra Leone.
The imports from foreign countries into Africa consist chiefly of manufactured goods, varying in character according to the development of the different countries in civilization. In Egypt, Algeria and South Africa they include most of the necessaries and luxuries of civilized life, manufactured cotton and woollen goods, especially the former, taking the first place, but various food stuffs, metal goods, coal and miscellaneous articles being also included. In tropical Africa, and generally where few Europeans have settled, the great bulk of the imports consists as a rule of cotton goods, articles for which there is a constant native demand.
No continent has in the past been so lacking in means of
communication as Africa, and it was only in the last decade
of the 19th century that decided steps were taken to
remedy these defects. The African rivers, with the
exception of the middle Congo and its affluents, andDevelopment of means of communica-
tion. the middle course of the three other chief rivers, are generally unfavourable to navigation, and throughout the tropical region almost the sole routes have been native footpaths, admitting the passage of a single file of porters, on whose heads all goods have been carried from place to place. Certain of these native trade routes are, however, much frequented, and lead for hundreds of miles from the coast to the interior. In the desert regions of the north transport is by caravans of camels, and in the south ox-wagons, before the advent of railways, supplied the general means of locomotion. The native trade routes led generally from the centres of greatest population or production to the seaports by the nearest route, but to this rule there was a striking exception. The dense forests of Upper Guinea and the upper Congo proved a barrier which kept the peoples of the Sudan from direct access to the sea, and from Timbuktu to Darfur the great trade routes were either west to east or south to north across the Sahara. The principal caravan routes across the desert lead from different points in Morocco and Algeria to Timbuktu; from Tripoli to Timbuktu, Kano and other great marts of the western and central Sudan; from Bengazi to Wadai; and from Assiut on the Nile through the Great Oasis and the Libyan desert to Darfur. South of the equator the principal long-established routes are those from Loanda to the Lunda and Baluba countries; from Benguella via Bihe to Urua and the upper Zambezi; from Mossamedes across the Kunene to the upper Zambezi; and from Bagamoyo, opposite Zanzibar, to Tanganyika. Many of the native routes have been superseded by the improved communications introduced by Europeans in the utilization of waterways and the construction of roads and railways. Steamers have been conveyed overland in sections and launched on the interior waterways above the obstructions to navigation. On the upper Nile and Albert Nyanza their introduction was due to Sir S. Baker and General C. G. Gordon (1871–1876); on the middle Congo and its affluents to Sir H. M. Stanley and the officials of the Congo Free State, as well as to the Baptist missionaries on the river; and on Lake Nyasa to the supporters of the Scottish mission. A small vessel was launched on Victoria Nyanza 1896 by a British mercantile firm, and a British government steamer made its first trip in November 1900. On the other great lakes and on most of the navigable rivers steamers were plying regularly before the close of the 19th century. However, the shallowness of the water in the Niger and Zambezi renders their navigation possible only to light-draught steamers. Roads suitable for wheeled traffic are few. The first attempt at road-making in Central Africa on a large scale was that of Sir T. Fowell Buxton and Mr (afterwards Sir W.) Mackinnon, who completed the first section of a track leading into the interior from Dar-es-Salaam (1879). A still more important undertaking was the “Stevenson road,” begun in 1881 from the head of Lake Nyasa to the south end of Tanganyika, and constructed mainly at the expense of Mr James Stevenson, a director of the African Lakes Company—a company which helped materially in the opening up of Nyasaland. The Stevenson road forms a link in the “Lakes route” into the heart of the continent. In British East Africa a road connecting Mombasa with Victoria Nyanza was completed in 1897, but has since been in great measure superseded by the railway. Good roads have also been made in German East Africa and Cameroon and in Madagascar.
Railways, the chief means of affording easy access to the interior of the continent, were for many years after their first introduction to Africa almost entirely confined to the extreme north and south (Egypt, Algeria, Cape Colony and Natal). Apart from short lines in Senegal, Angola and at Lourenço Marques, the rest of the continent was in 1890 without a railway system. In Egypt the Alexandria and Cairo railway dates from 1855, while in 1877 the lines open reached about 1100 miles, and in 1890, in addition to the lines traversing the delta, the Nile had been ascended to Assiut. In Algeria the construction of an inter-provincial railway was decreed in 1857, but was still incomplete twenty years later, when the total length of the lines open hardly exceeded 300 miles. Before 1890 an extension to Tunis had been opened, while the plateau had been crossed by the lines to Ain Sefra in the west and Biskra in the east. In Senegal the railway from Dakar to St Louis had been commenced and completed during the ’eighties, while the first section of the Senegal-Niger railway, that from Kayes to Bafulabe, was also constructed during the same decade. In Cape Colony, where in about 1880 the railways were limited to the neighbourhood of Cape Town, Port Elizabeth and East London, the next decade saw the completion of the trunk-line from Cape Town to Kimberley, with a junction at De Aar with that from Port Elizabeth. The northern frontier had, however, nowhere been crossed. In Natal, also, the main line had not advanced beyond Ladysmith. The settlement, c. 1890, of the main lines of the partition of the continent was followed by many projects for the opening up of the possessions and spheres of influence of the various powers by the building of railways; several of these schemes being carried through in a comparatively short time. The building of railways was undertaken by the governments concerned, nearly all the African lines being state-owned. In the Congo Free State a railway, which took some ten years to build, connecting the navigable waters of the lower and middle Congo, was completed in 1898, while in 1906 the middle and upper courses of the river were linked by the opening of a line past Stanley Falls. Thus the vast basin of the Congo was rendered easily accessible to commercial enterprise. In North Africa the Algerian and Tunisian railways were largely extended, and proposals were made for a great trunk-line from Tangier to Alexandria. The railway from Ain Sefra was continued southward towards Tuat, the project of a trans-Saharan line having occupied the attention of French engineers since 1880. In French West Africa railway communication between the upper Senegal and the upper Niger was completed in 1904; from the Guinea coast at Konakry another line runs north-east to the upper Niger, while from Dahomey a third line goes to the Niger at Garu. In the British colonies on the same coast the building of railways was begun in 1896. A line to Kumasi was completed in 1903, and the line from Lagos to the lower Illorin in 1908. Thence the railway was continued to the Niger at Jebba. From Baro, a port on the lower Niger which can be reached by steamers all the year round, another railway, begun in 1907, goes via Bida, Zungeru and Zaria to Kano, a total distance of 400 miles. A line from Jebba to Zungeru affords connexion with the Lagos railway.
But the greatest development of the railway systems was in the south and east of the continent. In British East Africa a survey for a railway from Mombasa to Victoria Nyanza was made in 1892. The first rails were laid in 1896 and the line reached the lake in December 1901. Meanwhile, there had been a great extension of railways in South Africa. Lines from Cape Town, Port Elizabeth, East London, Durban and Delagoa Bay all converged on the newly risen city of Johannesburg, the centre of the Rand gold mines. A more ambitious project was that identified with the name of Cecil Rhodes, namely, the extension northward of the railway from Kimberley with the object of effecting a continuous railway connexion from Cape Town to Cairo. The line from Kimberley reached Bulawayo in 1897. (Bulawayo is also reached from Beira on the east coast by another line, completed in 1902, which goes through Portuguese territory and Mashonaland.) The extension of the line northward from Bulawayo was begun in 1899, the Zambezi being bridged, immediately below the Victoria Falls, in 1905. From this point the railway goes north to the Katanga district of the Congo State. In the north of the continent a step towards the completion of the Cape to Cairo route was taken in the opening in 1899 of the railway from Wadi Haifa to Khartum. A line of greater economic importance than the last named is the railway (completed in 1905) from Port Sudan on the Red Sea to the Nile a little south of Berber, thus placing the Anglo-Egyptian Sudan within easy reach of the markets of the world. A west to east connexion across the continent by rail and steamer, from the mouth of the Congo to Port Sudan, was arranged in 1906 when an agreement was entered into by the Congo and Sudan governments for the building of a railway from Lado, on the Nile, to the Congo frontier, there to meet a railway starting from the river Congo near Stanley Falls. A railway of considerable importance is that from Jibuti in the Gulf of Aden to Harrar, giving access to the markets of southern Abyssinia.
Besides the railways mentioned there are several others of less importance. Lines run from Loanda and other ports of Angola towards the Congo State frontier, and from Tanga and Dar-es-Salaam on the coast of German East Africa towards the great lakes. In British Central Africa a railway connects Lake Nyasa with the navigable waters of the Shire, and various lines have been built by the French in Madagascar.
All the main railways in South Africa, the lines in British West Africa, in the Anglo-Egyptian Sudan and in Egypt south of Luxor are of 3 ft. 6 in. gauge. The main lines in Lower Egypt and in Algeria and Tunisia are of 4 ft. 81 in. gauge. Elsewhere as in French West and British East Africa the lines are of metre (3·28 ft.) gauge.
The telegraphic system of Africa is on the whole older than that of the railways, the newer European possessions having in most cases been provided with telegraph lines before railway projects had been set on foot. In Algeria, Egypt and Cape Colony the systems date back to the middle of the 19th century, before the end of which the lines had in each country reached some thousands of miles. In tropical Africa the systems of French West Africa, where the line from Dakar to St Louis was begun in 1862, were the first to be fully developed, lines having been carried from different points on the coast of Senegal and Guinea towards the Niger, the main line being prolonged north-west to Timbuktu, and west and south to the coast of Dahomey. The route for a telegraph line to connect Timbuktu with Algeria was surveyed in 1905. The Congo region is furnished with several telegraphic systems, the longest going from the mouth of the river to Lake Tanganyika. From Ujiji on the east coast of that lake there is telegraphic communication via Tabora with Dar-es-Salaam and via Nyasa and Rhodesia with Cape Town. The last-named line is the longest link in the trans-continental line first suggested in 1876 by Sir (then Mr) Edwin Arnold and afterwards taken up by Cecil Rhodes. The northern link from Egypt to Khartum has been continued southward to Uganda, while another line connects Uganda with Mombasa. At the principal seaports the inland systems are connected with submarine cables which place Africa in telegraphic communication with the rest of the world.
Numerous steamship lines run from Great Britain, Germany, France and other countries to the African seaports, the journey from any place in western Europe to any port on the African coast occupying, by the shortest route, not more than three weeks. (E. He.; F. R. C.)
Bibliography.—Authoritative works dealing with Africa as a whole in any of its aspects are comparatively rare. Besides such volumes the following list includes therefore books containing valuable information concerning large or typical sections of the continent:—
§ I. General Descriptions— (a) Ancient and Medieval.
- Herodotus, ed. G. Rawlinson, 4 vols. (1880);
- Ptolemy’s Geographia, ed. C. Müller, vol. i. (Paris, 1883–1901);
- Ibn Haukal, “Description de l’Afrique (transl. McG. de Slane), Nouv. Journal asiatique, 1842;
- Edrisi, “Géographie” (transl. Jaubert), Réc. de voyages . . . Soc. de Géogr. vol. v. (Paris, 1836);
- Abulfeda, Géographie (transl. Reinaud and Guyard, Paris, 1848–1883);
- M. A. P. d’Avezac, Description de l’Afrique ancienne (Paris, 1845);
- L. de Marmol, Description general de Africa (Granada, 1573);
- L. Sanuto, Geografia dell’ Africa (Venice, 1588);
- F. Pigafetta, A Report of the Kingdom of Congo, &c. (1597);
- Leo Africanus, The History and Description of Africa (transl. J. Pory, ed. R. Brown), 3 vols. (1896);
- O. Dapper, Naukeurige beschrijvinge der afrikaensche gewesten, &c. (Amsterdam, 1668) (also English version by Ogilvy, 1670, and French version, Amsterdam, 1686);
- B. Tellez, “Travels of the Jesuits in Ethiopia,” A New Collection of Voyages, vol. vii. (1710);
- G. A. Cavazzi da Montecuccolo, Istorica Descrittione de tre Regni Congo, Matamba, et Angola (Milan, 1690) (account of the labours of the Capuchin missionaries and their observations on the country and people);
- J. Barbot, “Description of the Coasts of North and South Guinea and of Ethiopia Inferior,” Churchill’s Voyages, vol. v. (1707);
- W. Bosman, A New . . . Description of the Coasts of North and South Guinea, &c., 2nd ed. (1721);
- J. B. Labat, Nouvelle relation de l’Afrique occidentale, 5 vols. (Paris, 1728);
- Idem, Relation historique de l’Éthiopie occidentale, 5 vols. (Paris, 1732).
- B. d'Anville, Mémoire conc. les rivières de l’interieur de l’Afrique (Paris, n.d.);
- M. Vollkommer, Die Quellen B. d'Anville’s für seine kritische Karte von Afrika (Munich, 1904);
- C. Ritter, Die Erdkunde, i. Theil, 1. Buch, “Afrika” (Berlin, 1822);
- l. M‘Queen, Geographical and Commercial View of Northern and Central Africa (Edinburgh, 1821);
- Idem, Geographical Survey of Africa (1840);
- W. D. Cooley, Inner Africa laid open (1852);
- E. Reclus, Nouvelle géographie universelle, vols. x.-xiii. (1885–1888);
- A. H. Keane, Africa (in Stanford’s Compendium), 2 vols., 2nd ed. (1904–1907);
- F. Hahn and W. Sievers, Afrika, 2. Aufl. (Leipzig, 1901);
- M. Fallex and A. Mairey, L’Afrique au début du XXᵉ siècle (Paris, 1906);
- Sir C. P. Lucas, Historical Geography of the British Colonie, vols. iii. and iv. (Oxford, 1894, 1904);
- F. D. and A. J. Herbertson, Descriptive Geographies from Original Sources: Africa (1902);
- British Africa (The British Empire Series, vol. ii., 1899);
- Journal of the African Society;
- Comité de l’Afrique française, Bulletin, Paris; Mitteilungen der afrikan. Gesellschaft in Deutschland (Berlin, 1879–1889);
- Mitteilungen . . . aus den deutschen Schutzegebieten (Berlin);
- H. Schirmer, Le Sahara (Paris, 1893);
- Mary H. Kingsley, West African Studies, 2nd ed. (1901);
- J. Bryce, Impressions of South Africa (1897);
- Sir Harry Johnston, The Uganda Protectorate, 2 vols. (1902) (vol ii. is devoted to anthropology);
- E. D. Morel, Affairs of West Africa (1902).
§ II. Geography (Physical), Geology, Climate, Flora and Fauna.— (For Descriptive Geogr. see § I.)
- G. Gürich, “Überblick über den geolog. Bau des afr. Kontinents,” Peterm. Mitt., 1887;
- A. Knox, Notes on the Geology of the Continent of Africa (1906) (includes a bibliography);
- L. von Hohnel, A. Rosiwal, F. Toula and E. Suess, Beiträge zur geologischen Kenntniss des östlichen Afrika (Vienna, 1891);
- E. Stromer, Die Geologie der deutschen Schutzgebieten in Afrika (Munich, 1896);
- J. Chavanne, Afrika im Lichte unserer Tage: Bodengestalt, &c. (Vienna, 1881);
- F. Heidrich, “Die mittlere Höhe Afrikas,” Peterm. Mitt., 1888;
- J. W. Gregory, The Great Rift-Valley (1896);
- H. G. Lyons, The Physiography of the River Nile and its Basin (Cairo, 1906);
- S. Passarage, Die Kalahari: Versuch einer physischgeogr. Darstellung . . . des sudafr. Beckens (Berlin, 1904);
- Idem, “Inselberglandschaften im tropischen Afrika,” Naturw. Wochenschrift, 1904. 654-665;
- J. E. S. Moore, The Tanganyika Problem (1903);
- W. H. Hudleston, “On the Origin of the Marine (Halolimnic) Fauna of Lake Tanganyika,” Journ. of Trans. Victoria Inst., 1904, 300-351 (discusses the whole question of the geological history of equatorial Africa);
- E. Stromer, “Ist der Tanganyika ein Relikten-See?” Peterm. Mitt., 1901, 275-278;
- E. Köhlschütter, “Die . . . Arbeiten der Pendelexpedition . . . in Deutsch-Ost-Afrika,” Verh. Deuts. Geographentages Breslau, 1901, 133-153;
- J. Cornet, “La géologie du bassin du Congo,” Bull. Soc. Belge géol., 1898;
- E. G. Ravenstein, “The Climatology of Africa” (ten reports), Reports Brit. Association, 1892–1901;
- Idem, “Climatological Observations . . . I. Tropical Africa” (1904);
- H. G. Lyons, “On the Relations between Variations of Atmospheric Pressure . . . and the Nile Flood,” Proc. Roy. Soc., Ser. A, vol. lxxvi., 1905;
- P. Reichard, “Zur Frage der Austrocknung Afrikas,” Geogr. Zeitschrift, 1895;
- J. Hoffmann, “Die tiefsten Temperaturen auf den Hochländern,” &c., Peterm. Mitt., 1905;
- G. Fraunberger, “Studien über die jährlichen Niederschlagsmengen des afrik. Kontinents,” Peterm. Mitt., 1906;
- D. Oliver and Sir W. T. Thiselton-Dyer, Flora of Tropical Africa, 10 vols. (1888–1906);
- K. Oschatz, Anordnung der Vegetation in Afrika (Erlangen, 1900);
- A. Engler, Hochgebirgs-flora des tropischen Afrika (Berlin, 1892);
- Idem, Die Pflanzenwelt Ostaftikras und der Nachbargebiete, 3 vols. (Berlin, 1895);
- Idem, Beiträge zur Flora von Afrika (Engler’s Botan. Jahrbücher, 14 vols. &c.);
- W. P. Hiern, Catalogue of the African Plants Collected by Dr Friedrich Welwitsch in 1853–1861, 2 vols. (1896–1901);
- R. Schlechter, Westafrikanische Kautschuk-Expedition (Berlin, 1903);
- H. Baum, Kunene-Sambesi-Expedition (Berlin, 1903) (largely concerned with botany);
- W. L. Sclater, “Geography of Mammals, No. iv. The Ethiopian Region,” Geog. Journal, March 1896;
- H. A. Bryden and others, Great and Small Game of Africa (1899);
- F. C. Selous, African Nature Notes and Reminiscence (1908);
- E. N. Buxton, Two African Trips: with Notes and Suggestions on Big-Game Preservation in Africa (1902) (contains photographs of living animals);
- G.Schillings, With Flash-light and Rifle in Equatorial East Africa (1906);
- Idem, In Wildest Africa (1907) (striking collection of photographs of living wild animals);
- Exploration scientifique de l’Algérie: Histoire naturelle, 14 vols. and 4 atlases, Paris (1846–1850);
- Annales du Musée du Congo: Botanique, Zoologie (Brussels, 1898, &c.). The latest results of geographical research and a bibliography of current literature are given in the Geographical Journal, published monthly by the Royal Geographical Society.
§ III. Ethnology.—
- H. Hartmann, Die Völker Afrikas (Leipzig, 1879);
- B. Ankermann, “Kulturkreise in Afrika,” Zeit. f. Eth. vol. xxxvii. p. 34;
- Idem, “Über den gegenwärtigen Stand der Ethnographie der Südhälfte Afrikas,” Arch. f. Anth. n.f. iv. p. 24; G. Ser. i,
- Antropologia della stirpe camitica (Turin, 1897);
- J. Deniker, “Distribution géogr. et caractères physiques des Pygmées africains,” La Géographie, Paris, vol. viii. pp. 213-220;
- G. W. Stow and G. M. Theal, The Native Races of South Africa (1905);
- K. Barthel, Völkerbewegungen auf der Südhälfte des afrik. Kontinents (Leipzig, 1893);
- A. B. Ellis, The Tshi-speaking Peoples of the Gold Coast (1887);
- Idem, The Ewe-speaking Peoples of the Slave Coast (1890);
- Idem, The Yoruba-speaking Peoples of the Slave Coast (1894);
- H. Ling Roth, Great Benin, its Customs, &c. (Halifax, 1903);
- H. Frobenius, Die Heiden-Neger des ägyptischen Sudan (Berlin, 1893);
- Herbert Spencer and D. Duncan, Descriptive Sociology, vol. iv. African Races (1875);
- A. de Préville, Les Sociétés africaines (Paris, 1894);
- D. Macdonald, Africana or, the Heart of Heathen Africa, 2 vols. (1882);
- L. Frobenius, Der Ursprung der afrikanischen Kulturen (Der Ursprung der Kultur, Band i.) (Berlin, 1898);
- Idem, “Die Masken und Geheimbunde Afrikas,” Abhandl. Kaiserl. Leopoldin.-Carolin. Deuts. Akad. Naturforscher, 1899, 1-278;
- G. Schweinfurth, Artes africanae: Illustrations and Descriptions of . . . industrial Arts, &c. (in German and English) (Leipzig, 1875);
- F. Ratzel, Die afrikanischen Bögen . . . eine anthrop.-geographische Studie (Leipzig, 1891);
- K. Weule, Der afrikanische Pfeil (Leipzig, 1899);
- H. Frobenius, Afrikanische Bautypen (Dauchau bei München, 1894);
- H. Schurtz, Die afrikan. Gewerbe (Leipzig, 1900);
- E. W. Blyden, Christianity, Islam and the Negro Race (1887);
- James Stewart, Dawn in the Dark Continent, or Africa and its Missions (Edinburgh and London, 1903);
- W. H. J. Bleek, Comparative Grammar of South African Languages, 2 parts (1862–1869);
- Idem, Vocabularies of the Districts of Lourenzo Marques, &c., &c. (1900);
- R. N. Cust, Sketch of the Modern Languages of Africa, 2 vols. (1993);
- F. W. Kolbe, A Language Study based on Bantu (1888);
- J. T. Last, Polyglotta Africana orientalis (1885);
- J. Torrend, Comparative Grammar of the South African Bantu Languages (1891);
- S. W. Koelle, Polyglotta Africana (1854);
- C. Velten, Schilderungen der Suaheli von Expeditionen v. Wissmanns, &c., &c. (1900) (narratives taken down from the mouths of natives);
- A. Vierkandt, Volksgedichte im westlichen Central-Afrika (Leipzig, 1895).
For latest information the following periodicals should be consulted:—
- Journal of the Anthropological Institute of Great Britain and Ireland; Man (same publishers);
- Zeitschrift f. Ethnologie;
- Archiv f. Anthropologie;
§ IV. Archaeology and Art.—
- Publications of the Egyptian Exploration Fund;
- A. Mariette-Bey, The Monuments of Upper Egypt (1890);
- H. Brugsch, Die Ägyptologie (Leipzig, 1891);
- G. Maspero, L’ Ärchéologie égyptienne (Paris, 1890?);
- R. Lepsius, Denkmäler aus Ägypten und Äthiopien . . ., 6 vols. (Berlin, 1849–1859);
- G. A. Hoskins, Travels in Ethiopia . . . illustrating the Antiquities of the Ancient Kingdom of Meroe (1835);
- Records of the Past: being English Translations of . . . Egyptian Monuments, vols. 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 12 (1873–1881);
- Ditto, new series, 6 vols. (1890–1892);
- D. Randall-MacIver and A. Wilkin, Libyan Notes (1901) (archaeology and ethnology of North Africa);
- G. Boissier, L’Afrique romaine Promenades archéologiques en Algérie et en Tunisie, 2nd ed. (Paris, 1901);
- H. Randall-MacIver, Mediaeval Rhodesia (1906);
- Prisse d’Avennes, Histoire de l’art égyptien d’après les monuments, &c. with atlas (Paris, 1879);
- G. Perrot and C. Chipiez, History of Art in Ancient Egypt, 2 vols. (1993);
- H. Wallis, Egyptian Ceramic Art (1900);
- C. H. Read and O. M. Dalton, Antiquities from the City of Benin and from other parts of West Africa (1899).
§ V. Travel and Exploration.—
- Dean W. Vincent, The Commerce and Navigation of the Ancients, vol. 2, The Periplus of the Erythraean Sea (1807);
- G. E. de Azurara, Chronicle of the Discovery and Conquest of Guinea (Eng. trans., 2 vols., 1896, 1899);
- R. H. Major, Life of Prince Henry the Navigator (1868);
- E. G. Ravenstein, “The Voyages of Diogo Cão and Barth. Diaz,” Geogr. Journ., Dec. 1900;
- O. Hartig, “Ältere Entdeckungsgeschichte und Kartographie Afrikas,” Mitt. Geogr. Gesells. Wien, 1905;
- J. Leyden and H. Murray, Historical Account of Discoveries, &c., 2 vols., 2nd ed. (1818);
- T. E. Bowditch, Account of the Discoveries of the Portuguese in the Interior of Angola and Mozambique (1824);
- P. Paulitschke, Die geogr. Forschung des afrikan. Continents (Vienna, 1880);
- A. Supan, “Ein Jahrhundert der Afrika-Forschung,” Peterm. Mitt., 1888;
- R. Brown, The Story of Africa and its Explorers, 4 vols. (1892–1895);
- Sir Harry Johnston, The Nile Quest (1903);
- James Bruce, Travels to discover the Source of the Nile in 1768–1773, 5 vols., Edinburgh (1790);
- Proceedings of the Association for . . . Discovery of the Interior Parts of Africa, 1790–1810;
- Mungo Park, Travels into the Interior Districts of Africa (1799);
- Idem, Journal of a Mission, &c. (1815);
- Capt. J. K. Tuckey, Narrative of an Expedition to explore the River Zaire or Congo in 1816 (1818): D. Denham and H. Clapperton, Narrative of Travels and Discoveries in N. and Cent. Africa (1826);
- R. Caillié, Journal d’un voyage à Temboctu et à Jenné, 3 vols., Paris (1830);
- D. Livingstone, Missionary Travels . . . in South Africa (1857);
- The Last Journals of David Livingstone in Central Africa, ed. H. Waller (1874);
- H. Barth, Travels and Discoveries in North and Central Africa, 5 vols. (1857);
- J. L. Krapf, Travels, Researches, &c., in Eastern Africa (1860);
- Sir R. F. Burton, The Lake Regions of Central Africa, 2 vols. (1860);
- J. H. Speke, Journal of the Discovery of the Source of the Nile (1863);
- Sir S. W. Baker, The Albert Nyanza, 2 vols. (1866);
- G. Schweinfurth, The Heart of Africa, 2 vols. (1873);
- V. L. Cameron, Across Africa, 2 vols. (1877);
- T. Baines, The Gold Regions of South-Eastern Africa (1877);
- Sir H. M. Stanley, Through the Dark Continent, 2 vols. (1878);
- Idem, In Darkest Africa, 2 vols. (1890);
- G. Nachtigal, Sahara und Sudan, 3 vols. (Berlin, 1879–1889);
- P. S. de Brazza, Les Voyages de . . . (1875–1882), Paris, 1884;
- J. Thomson, Through Masai Land (1885);
- H. von Wissmann, Unter Deutscher Flagge quer durch Afrika, &c. (Berlin, 1889);
- Idem, My Second Journey through Equatorial Africa (1891);
- W. Junker, Travels in Africa 1875–1886, 3 vols. (1890–1892);
- L. G. Binger, Du Niger au Golfe de Guinée, &c. (Paris, 1892);
- O. Baumann, Durch Masailand zur Nilquelle (Berlin, 1894);
- R. Kandt, Caput Nili (Berlin, 1904);
- C. A. von Götzen, Durch Afrika von Ost nach West (Berlin, 1896);
- L. Vanutelli and C. Citerni, Seconda spedizione Bòttego: L’Omo (Milan, 1899);
- P. Foureau, D’Alger au Congo par le Tchad (Paris, 1902);
- C. Lemaire, Mission scientifique du Ka-Tanga: Journal de route, 1 vol., Résultats des observations, 16 parts (Brussels, 1902);
- A. St. H. Gibbons, Africa from South to North through Marotseland, 2 vols. (1904);
- E. Lenfant, La Grande Route du Tchad (Paris, 1905);
- Boyd Alexander, From the Niger to the Nile, 2 vols. (1907).
§ VI. Historical and Political.—
- H. Schurtz, Africa (World’s History, vol. 3, part 3) (1903);
- Sir H. H. Johnston, History of the Colonization of Africa by Alien Races (Cambridge, 1899) (reprint with additional chapter “Latest Developments,” 1905);
- A. H. L. Heeren, Reflections on the Politics, Intercourse and Trade of the Ancient Nations of Africa, 2 vols. (Oxford, 1832);
- G. Rawlinson, History of Ancient Egypt (1881);
- A. Graham, Roman Africa (1902);
- J. de Barros, Asia: Ira Decada, Lisbon (1552 and 1777–1778);
- J. Strandes, Die Portugiesenzeit von . . . Ostafrika (Berlin, 1899);
- R. Schück, Brandenburg-Preussens Kolonial-Politik . . . 1641–1721, 2 vols. Leipzig, 1889);
- G. M‘Call Theal, History and Ethnography of Africa south of the Zambesi . . . to 1795, 3 vols. (1907–1910), and History of South Africa since September 1795 (to 1872) 5 vols. (1908);
- Idem, Records of South-Eastern Africa, 9 vols., 1898–1903;
- Lady Lugard, A Tropical Dependency: Outline of the History of the Western Sudan, &c. (1905);
- Sir F. Hertslet, The Map of Africa by Treaty, 3 vols. (3rd ed., 1909);
- J . S. Keltie, The Partition of Africa, 2nd ed. (1895);
- F. Van Ortroy, Conventions internationales définissant les limites . . . en Afrique (Brussels, 1898);
- General Act of the Conference of Berlin, 1885;
- The Surveys and Explorations of British Africa (Colonial Reports, No. 500) (1906), and annual reports thereafter;
- Sir F. D. Lugard, The Rise or our East African Empire, 2 vols. (1893);
- E. Petit, Les colonies françaises, 2 vols. (Paris, 1902–1904);
- E. Rouard de Card, Les Traités de protectorat conclus par la France en Afrique, 1870–1895 (Paris, 1897);
- A. J. de Araujo, Colonies portuguaises d’Afrique (Lisbon, 1900);
- B. Trognitz, “Neue Arealbestimmung des Continents Afrika,” Petermanns Mitt., 1893, 220-221;
- A. Supan, “Die Bevölkerung der Erde,” xii., Peterm. Mitt. Ergänzungsh. 146 (Gotha, 1904) (deals with areas as well as population).
§ VII. Commerce and Economics.—
- A. Silva White, The Development of Africa, 2nd ed. (1892);
- K. Dove, “Grundzüge einer Wirtschaftsgeographie Afrikas,” Geographische Zeitschrift, 1905, 1-18;
- E. Hahn, “Die Stellung Afrikas in der Geschichte des Welthandels,” Verhandl. 11. Deutsch. Geographentags zu Bremen (Berlin, 1896);
- L. de Launay, Les Richesses minérales de l’Afrique (Paris, 1903);
- K. Futterer, Afrika in seiner Bedeutung für die Goldproduktion (Berlin, 1894);
- P. Reichard, “Das afrikan. Elfenbein und sein Handel,” Deutsche geogr. Blätter (Bremen, 1889);
- Sir A. Moloney, Sketch of the Forestry of West Africa (1887);
- Dewevre, “Les Caoutchoucs africains,” Ann. Soc. Sci. Bruxelles, 1895;
- Sir T. F. Buxton, The African Slave Trade and its Remedy (1840);
- C. M. A. Lavigerie, L’Esclavage africain (Paris, 1888);
- E. de Renty, Les chemins de fer coloniaux en Afrique, 3 vols. (Paris, 1903–1905);
- H. Meyer, Die Eisenbahnen im tropischen Afrika (Leipzig, 1902);
- G. Grenfell, “The Upper Congo as a Waterway,” Geogr. Journ., Nov. 1902;
- A. St. H. Gibbons, “The Nile and Zambezi Systems as Waterways,” Journ. R. Colon. Inst., 1901;
- K. Lent, “Verkehrsmittel in Ostafrika,” Deutsches Kolonialblatt, 1894;
- “Trade of the United Kingdom with the African Continent in 1898–1902,” Board of T. Journ., 1903;
- Diplomatic and Consular Reports, Annual Series;
- Colonial Reports;
- T. H. Parke, Guide to Health in Africa (1893);
- R. W. Felkin, Geographical Distribution of Tropical Diseases in Africa (1895).
The following bibliographies may also be consulted:
- J. Gay, Bibliographie des ouvrages relatifs à l’Afrique, &c. (San Remo, 1875);
- P. Paulitschke, Die Afrika-Literatur von 1500 bis 1750 (Vienne, 1882);
- Catalogue of the Colonial Office Library, vol. 3, Africa (specially for government publications). (E. He.)
- With the islands, 11,498,000 sq. m.
- See the calculations of Capt. T. T. Behrens, Geog. Journal, vol. xxix (1907).
- The estimate of Capt. H. G. Lyons in 1905 was 1,107,227 sq. mi.
- Including waterless tracts naturally belonging to the river-basin.
- Commercial treaties between Carthage and Rome were made in the 6th and 5th centuries B.C. The first armed conflict between the rival powers, begun in 264 B.C., was a contest for the possession of Sicily.
- This river was called by the Portuguese the Zaire. They appear to have made no attempt to trace its course beyond the rapids which stop navigation from the sea.
- France acquired, as stations for her ships on the voyage to and from India, settlements in Madagascar and the neighbouring islands. The first settlement was made in 1642.
- The Association, in 1831, was merged in the Royal Geographical Society.
- The Mamelukes, whom the Turks had overthrown in the 16th century, had regained practically independent power.
- In imitation of the British example, an American society founded in 1822 the negro colony (now republic) of Liberia.
- The first territorial acquisition made by Great Britain in this region was in 1851, when Lagos Island was annexed.
- As early as 1848 an Arab from Zanzibar journeying across the continent had arrived at Benguella.
- Another great traveller of this stamp was Wilhelm Junker, who spent the greater part of the period 1875–1886 in the east central Sudan.
- Specially appointed to consider West African affairs.
- See the tables in Behm and Wagner’s Bevölkerung der Erde (Gotha, 1872).
- In 1887 this society united with the German Colonial Society, an organization founded in 1882. The united society took the title of the German Colonial Company.
- At this period negotiations between Great Britain and Italy had begun but were not concluded.
- This association, formed in 1878 by a union of associations primarily intended for the exploration of Africa, ceased to exist in 1891.
- Further conferences respecting the liquor traffic in Africa were held in Brussels in 1899 and 1906. In both instances conventions were signed by the powers, raising the minimum duty on imported spirituous liquors.
- Where no place of publication is given, London is to be understood.