BAKIS (i.e. “speaker,” from βάζω), a general name for the inspired prophets and dispensers of oracles who flourished in Greece from the 8th to the 6th century B.C. Suidas mentions three: a Boeotian, an Arcadian and an Athenian. The first, who was the most famous, was said to have been inspired by the nymphs of the Corycian cave. His oracles, of which specimens are extant in Herodotus and Pausanias, were written in hexameter verse, and were considered to have been strikingly fulfilled. The Arcadian was said to have cured the women of Sparta of a fit of madness. Many of the oracles which were current under his name have been attributed to Onomacritus.
Herodotus viii. 20, 77, ix. 43; Pausanias iv. 27, ix. 17, x. 12; Schol. Aristoph. Pax, 1070; see Göttling, Opuscula Academica (1869).
BAKÓCZ, TAMÁS, Cardinal (1442–1521), Hungarian ecclesiastic and statesman, was the son of a wagoner, adopted by his uncle, who trained him for the priesthood and whom he succeeded as rector of Tétel (1480). Shortly afterwards he became one of the secretaries of King Matthias I., who made him bishop of Gyor and a member of the royal council (1490). Under Wladislaus II. (1490–1516) he became successively bishop of Eger, the richest of the Hungarian sees, archbishop of Esztergom (1497), cardinal (1500), and titular patriarch of Constantinople (1510). From 1490 to his death in 1521 he was the leading statesman of Hungary and mainly responsible for her foreign policy. It was solely through his efforts that Hungary did not accede to the league of Cambrai, was consistently friendly with Venice, and formed a family compact with the Habsburgs. He was also the only Magyar prelate who seriously aspired to the papal throne. In 1513, on the death of Julius II., he went to Rome for the express purpose of bringing about his own election as pope. He was received with more than princely pomp, and all but succeeded in his design, thanks to his extraordinary adroitness and the command of an almost unlimited bribing-fund. But Venice and the emperor played him false, and he failed. He returned to Hungary as papal legate, bringing with him the bull of Leo X. proclaiming a fresh crusade against the Turks. But the crusade degenerated into a jacquerie which ravaged the whole kingdom, and much discredited Bakócz. He lost some of his influence at first after the death of Wladislaus, but continued to be the guiding spirit at court, till age and infirmity confined him almost entirely to his house in the last three years of his life. Bakócz was a man of great ability but of no moral principle whatever. His whole life was a tissue of treachery. He was false to his benefactor Matthias, false to Matthias’s son János Corvinus (q.v.), whom he chicaned out of the throne, and false to his accomplice in that transaction, Queen Beatrice. His rapacity disgusted even an age in which every one could be bought and sold. His attempt to incorporate the wealthy diocese of Transylvania with his own primatial province was one of the principal causes of the spread of the Reformation in Hungary. He left a fortune of many millions. His one redeeming feature was a love of art; his own cathedral was a veritable Pantheon.
See Vilmos Fraknoi, Tamás Bakócz (Hung.) (Budapest, 1889).
(R. N. B.)
BAKRI [Abū ‛Ubaid ‛Abdallah ibn ‛Abd ul-‛Azīz ul-Bakrī], (1040–1094), Arabian geographer, was born at Cordova. His best-known work is the dictionary of geographical names which occur in the poets, with an introduction on the seats of the Arabian tribes. This has been edited by F. Wüstenfeld (Göttingen, 1876–1877). Another of his works was a general geography of the world, which exists in manuscript. The part referring to North Africa was edited by M‘G. de Slane (Algiers, 1857).
See C. Brockelmann’s Gesch. der Arab. Litteratur (Weimar, 1898), vol. i. p. 476.
BAKU, a government of Russian Transcaucasia, stretching along the west coast of the Caspian Sea from 41° 50′ to 38° 30′ N. lat., and bounded on the W. by the government of Elisavetpol and the province of Daghestan, and on the S. by Persia. It includes the Kuba plain on the north-east slope of the Caucasus; the eastern extremity of that range from the Shad-dagh (13,960 ft.) and the Bazardyuz (14,727 ft.) to the Caspian, where it terminates in the Apsheron peninsula; the steppes of the lower Kura and Aras on the south of the Caucasus, and a narrow coast-belt between the Anti-Caucasus and the Caspian. The last-mentioned region lies partly round the Kizil-agach Bay, opening to the south. Area of government, 15,172 sq. m. Both slopes of the Caucasus are very fertile and well irrigated, with fine forests, fields of rice and other cereals, and flourishing gardens. The steppes of the Kura are also fertile, but require artificial irrigation, especially for cotton. In addition to agriculture and cattle-breeding, the vine and mulberry are extensively grown. The Apsheron peninsula is dry and bare of vegetation; but within it are situated the famous petroleum wells of Baku. These, which go down to depths of 700 to 1700 ft., yield crude naphtha, from which the petroleum or kerosene is distilled; while the heavier residue (mazut) is used as lubricating oil and for fuel, for instance in the locomotives of the Transcaspian railway. Whereas in 1863 the output was only 5500 tons of crude naphtha, in 1904 it amounted to 9,833,600 tons; but business was much injured by a serious fire in 1905. The oil-fields lie around the town of Baku: the largest, that of Balakhany-Sabunchi-Romany (6 sq. m.), is 81 m. north of the town; that of Bibi-Eybat, is 31 m. south; the “black town” (Nobel’s) is 2 m. south-east; and beyond the last names is the “white town” (Rothschild’s). The lighter oil is conveyed to Batum on the Black Sea in pipes, and is there shipped for export; the heavier oils reach the same port and the ports of Novorossiysk and Poti, also on the Black Sea, in tank railway-cars. At Surakhani, 13 m. east of the town, is the now disused temple of the Parsee fire-worshippers, who were attracted thither by the natural fountains of inflammable gas.
The government is divided into six districts, the chief towns of which are Baku (the capital of the government), Geok-chai (pop. 2247 in 1897), Kuba (15,346), Lenkoran (8768), Salyany (10,168), in district of Jevat, and Shemakha (20,008). The population numbered 828,511 in 1897, of whom the major part were Tatars; other races were Russians, the Iranian tribes of the Tates (89,519) and Talysh (34,994), Armenians (52,233) and the Caucasian mountaineers known as Kurins.
BAKU, the chief town of the government of the same name, in Russian Transcaucasia, on the south side of the peninsula of Apsheron, in 40° 21′ N. and 49° 50′ E. It is connected by rail with the south Russian railway system at Beslan, the junction for Vladikavkaz (400 m.), via Derbent and Petrovsk, with Batum (560 m.) and Poti (536 m.) on the Black Sea via Tiflis. A long stone quay next the harbour is backed by the new town climbing up the slopes behind. To the west is the old town, consisting of steep, narrow, winding streets, and presenting a decidedly oriental appearance. Here are the ruins of a palace of the native khans, built in the 16th century; the mosques of the Persian shahs, built in 1078 and now converted into an arsenal; nearer the sea the “maidens' tower,” transformed into a lighthouse; and not far from it remains of ancient walls projecting above the sea, and showing traces of Arabic architecture of the 9th and 10th centuries. Beside the harbour are engineering works, dry docks and barracks, stores and workshops belonging to the Russian Caspian fleet. Besides the petroleum refineries the town possesses oil-works (for fuel), flour-mills, sulphuric acid works and tobacco factories. Owing to its excellent harbour Baku is a chief depot for merchandise coming from Persia and Transcaspia—raw cotton, silk, rice, wine, fish, dried fruit and timber—and for Russian manufactured goods. The climate is extreme, the mean temperature for the year being 58° F., for January 38°, for July 80°; annual rainfall 9.4 in. A wind of exceptional violence blows sometimes from the N.N.W. in winter. Pop. (1860) 13,381; (1897) 112,253; (1900) 179,133. The town is mentioned by the Arab geographer, Masudi, in the 10th century. From 1509 it was in the possession of the Persians. The Russians captured it from them in 1723, but restored it in 1735; it was incorporated in the Russian empire in 1806. In 1904–1905,