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657
BEHN—BEIRA

is of course given to the Persian language (in four columns); the three Susian (Elamitic) columns lie to the left, and the Babylonian text is on a slanting boulder above them; a part of the Babylonian has been destroyed by a torrent, which has made its way over it. In former times the second language has often been called Scythian, Turanian or Median; but we now know from numerous inscriptions of Susa that it is the language of Elam which was spoken in Susa, the capital of the Persian empire.

In 1835 the difficult and almost inaccessible cliff was first climbed by Sir Henry Rawlinson, who copied and deciphered the inscriptions (1835-1845), and thus completed the reading of the old cuneiform text and laid the foundation of the science of Assyriology. Diodorus ii. 13 (cf. xvii. 110), probably following a later author who wrote the history of Alexander’s campaigns, mentions the sculptures and inscriptions, but attributes them to Semiramis. At the foot of the rock are the remainders of some other sculptures (quite destroyed), the fragments of a Greek inscription of the Parthian prince Gotarzes (A.D. 40; text in Dittenberger, Orientis graeci inscr. selectae, no. 431), and of an Arabic inscription.

See Sir Henry Rawlinson in the Journ. R. Geog. Soc. ix., 1839; J. R. Asiatic Soc. x. 1866, xiv., 1853, xv., 1855; Archaeologia, xxxiv., 1852; Sir R. Ker Porter, Travels, ii. 149 ff.; Flandin and Coste, Voyage en Perse, i. pl. 16; and the modern editions of the inscriptions, the best of which, up to the end of the 19th century, were: Weissbach and Bang, Die altpersischen Keilinschriften (1893); Weissbach, Die Achaemenideninschriften zweiter Art (1890); Bezold, Die (babylonischen) Achaemenideninschriften (1882). A description of the locality, with comments on the present state of the inscriptions and doubtful passages of the Persian text, was given by Dr A. V. Williams Jackson in the Journal of the American Oriental Society, xxiv., 1903, and in his Persia, Past and Present (1906). Dr Jackson in 1903 climbed to the ledge of the rock and was able to collate the lower part of the four large Persian columns; he thus convinced himself that Foy’s conjecture of ārštām (“righteousness”) for Rawlinson’s abištām or abaštām was correct. A later investigation was carried out in 1904 on the instructions of the British Museum Trustees by Messrs. L. W. King and R. C. Thompson, who published their results in 1907 under the title, The Inscription of Darius the Great at Behistûn, including a full illustrated account of the sculptures and the inscription, and a complete collation of the text.

 (Ed. M.) 

BEHN, APHRA (otherwise Afra, Aphara or Ayfara) (1640-1689), British dramatist and novelist, was baptized at Wye, Kent, in 1640. Her father, John Johnson, was a barber. While still a child she was taken out to Surinam, then an English possession, from which she returned to England in 1658, when it was handed over to the Dutch. In Surinam Aphra learned the history, and acquired a personal knowledge of the African prince Oroonoko and his beloved Imoinda, whose adventures she has related in her novel, Oroonoko. On her return she married Mr Behn, a London merchant of Dutch extraction. The wit and abilities of Mrs Behn brought her into high estimation at court, and—her husband having died by this time—Charles II. employed her on secret service in the Netherlands during the Dutch war. At Antwerp she successfully accomplished the objects of her mission; and in the latter end of 1666 she wormed out of one Van der Aalbert the design formed by De Ruyter, in conjunction with the DeWitts, of sailing up the Thames and burning the English ships in their harbours. This she communicated to the English court, but although the event proved her intelligence to have been well founded, it was at the time disregarded. Disgusted with political service, she returned to England, and from this period she appears to have supported herself by her writings. Among her numerous plays are The Forced Marriage, or the Jealous Bridegroom (1671); The Amorous Prince (1671); The Town Fop (1677); and The Rover, or the Banished Cavalier (in two parts, 1677 and 1681); and The Roundheads (1682). The coarseness that disfigures her plays was the fault of her time; she possessed great ingenuity, and showed an admirable comprehension of stage business, while her wit and vivacity were unfailing. Of her short tales, or novelettes, the best is the story of Oroonoko, which was made the basis of Thomas Southerne’s popular tragedy. Mrs Behn died on the 16th of April 1689, and was buried in the cloisters of Westminster Abbey.

See Plays written by the Late Ingenious Mrs Behn (1702; reprinted, 1871); also “Aphra Behn’s Gedichte und Prosawerke,” by P. Siegel in Anglia (Halle, vol. xxv., 1902, pp. 86-128,329-385); and A. C. Swinburne’s essay on “Social Verse” in Studies in Prose and Poetry (1894).

BEHR, WILLIAM JOSEPH (1775-1851), German publicist and writer, was born at Salzheim on the 26th of August 1775. He studied law at Würzburg and Göttingen, became professor of public law in the university of Würzburg in 1799, and in 1819 was sent as a deputy to the Landtag of Bavaria. Having associated himself with the party of reform, he was regarded with suspicion by the Bavarian king Maximilian I. and the court party, although favoured for a time by Maximilian’s son, the future King Louis I. In 1821 he was compelled to give up his professorship, but he continued to agitate for reform, and in 1831 the king refused to recognize his election to the Landtag. A speech delivered by Behr in 1832 was regarded as seditious, and he was arrested. In spite of his assertion of loyalty to the principle of monarchy he was detained in custody, and in 1836 was found guilty of seeking to injure the king. He then admitted his offence; but he was not released from prison until 1839, and the next nine years of his life were passed under police supervision at Passau and Regensburg. In 1848 he obtained a free pardon and a sum of money as compensation, and was sent to the German national assembly which met at Frankfort in May of that year. He passed his remaining days at Bamberg, where he died on the 1st of August 1851. Behr’s chief writings are: Darstellung der Bedürfnisse, Wünsche und Hoffnungen deutscher Nation (Aschaffenburg, 1816); Die Verfassung und Verwaltung des Staates (Nuremberg, 1811-1812); Von den rechtlichen Grenzen der Einwirkung des Deutschen Bundes auf die Verfassung, Gesetzgebung, und Rechtspflege seiner Gliederstaaten (Stuttgart, 1820).

BEIRA, a seaport of Portuguese East Africa, at the mouth of the Pungwe river, in 19° 50′ S., 34° 50′ E., 488 m. N. of Delagoa Bay, in communication by railway with Cape Town via Umtali, Salisbury and Bulawayo. Pop. about 4000, of whom a third are Europeans, and some 300 Indians. The town is built on a tongue of sand extending into the river, and is comparatively healthy. The sea front is protected by a masonry wall, and there are over 13,000 ft. of wharfage. Vessels drawing 24 ft. can enter the port at high tide. Between the customs house and the railway terminus is the mouth of a small river, the Chiveve, crossed by a steel bridge, the centre span revolving and giving two passages each of 40 ft. The town is without any architectural pretensions, but possesses fine public gardens. It is the headquarters of the Companhai de Moçambique, which administers the Beira district under charter from the Portuguese crown. The business community is largely British.

Beira occupies the site of a forgotten Arab settlement. The present port sprang into being as the result of a clause in the Anglo-Portuguese agreement of 1891 providing for the construction of a railway between Rhodesia and the navigable waters of the Pungwe. The railway at first began at Fontesvilla, about 50 m. by river above Beira, but was subsequently brought down to Beira. The completion in 1902 of the line connecting Salisbury with Cape Town adversely affected the port of Beira, the long railway route from the Cape being increasingly employed by travellers to and from Mashonaland. Moreover, the high freights on goods by the Beira route enabled Port Elizabeth to compete successfully for the trade of Rhodesia. In October 1905 a considerable reduction was made in railway rates and in port dues and customs, with the object of re-attracting to the port the transit trade of the interior, and in 1907 a branch of the Rhodesian customs was opened in the town. In that year goods valued at £647,000 passed through the port to Rhodesia. Efforts were also made to develop the agricultural and mineral resources of the Beira district itself. The principal exports are rubber, sugar, ground-nuts and oil seeds, beeswax, chromite (from Rhodesia), and gold (from Manica). The imports are chiefly rice (from India) and cotton goods for local use, and food stuffs, machinery, hardware and manufactured goods for Rhodesia. For the three years, 1905-1907, the average annual value of the