Open main menu

Page:EB1911 - Volume 17.djvu/589

This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.

Salween. Its width varies greatly, from a mile or even less on either side of the river to perhaps 40 m. at its broadest part near Taküt, the capital. It is divided into East and West Mang Lön, the boundary being the Salween. There are no Wa in West Mang Lön. Shans form the chief population, but there are Palaungs, Chinese and Yanglam, besides Lahu. The bulk of the population in East Mang Lön is Wa, but there are many Shans and Lahu. Both portions are very hilly; the only flat land is along the banks of streams in the valleys, and here the Shans are settled. There are prosperous settlements and bazaars at Nawng Hkam and Möng Kao in West Mang Lön. The Wa of Mang Lön have given up head-hunting, and many profess Buddhism. The capital, Taküt, is perched on a hill-top 6000 ft. above sea-level. The sawbwa is a Wa, and has control over two sub-states, Mōt Hai to the north and Maw Hpa to the south.

MANGNALL, RICHMAL (1769–1820), English schoolmistress, was born, probably at Manchester, on the 7th of March 1769. She was a pupil and finally mistress of a school at Crofton Hall, near Wakefield, Yorkshire, which she conducted most successfully until her death there on the 1st of May 1820. She was the author of Historical and Miscellaneous Questions for the Use of Young People (1800), generally known as “Magnall’s Questions,” which was prominent in the education of English girls in the first half of the 19th century.

MANGO. The mango-tree (Mangifera indica, natural order Anacardiaceae) is a native of tropical Asia, but is now extensively cultivated in the tropical and subtropical regions of the New as well as the Old World. It is indigenous in India at the base of the Himalayas, and in Further India and the Andaman Islands (see A. de Candolle, Origin of Cultivated Plants). The cultivation of the fruit must have spread at an early age over the Indian Peninsula, and it now grows everywhere in the plains. It grows rapidly to a height of 30 to 40 ft., and its dense, spreading and glossy foliage would secure its cultivation for the sake of its shade and beauty alone. Its fruit, a drupe, though in the wild variety (not to be confused with that of Spondias mangifera, belonging to the same order, also called wild mango in India) stringy and sour, from its containing much gallic acid, and with a disagreeable flavour of turpentine, has become sweet and luscious through culture and selection, to which we owe many varieties, differing not only in flavour but also in size, from that of a plum to that of an apple. When unripe, they are used to make pickles, tarts and preserves; ripe, they form a wholesome and very agreeable dessert. In times of scarcity the kernels also are eaten. The timber, although soft and liable to decay, serves for common purposes, and, mixed with sandal-wood, is employed in cremation by the Hindus. It is usually propagated by grafts, or by layering or inarching, rather than by seed.

See G. Watt, Dictionary of the Economic Products of India (1891).

MANGOSTEEN (Garcinia Mangostana), a tree belonging to the order Guttiferae. It is a native of the Malay Peninsula, and is extensively cultivated in southern Tenasserim, and in some places in the Madras presidency. Poor results have followed the attempt to introduce it to other countries; and A. de Candolle refers to it as one of the most local of cultivated plants both in its origin, habitation and cultivation. It belongs to a family in which the mean area of the species is very restricted. It is an evergreen about 20 ft. high, and is somewhat fir-like in general form, but the leaves are large, oval, entire, leathery and glistening. Its fruit, the much valued mangosteen, is about the size and shape of an orange, and is somewhat similarly partitioned, but is of a reddish-brown to chestnut colour. Its thick rind yields a very astringent juice, rich in tannin, and containing a gamboge-like resin. The soft and pulpy juice is snow-white or rose-coloured, and of delicious flavour and perfume. It is wholesome, and may be administered in fever.

The genus Garcinia is a genus of trees containing about fifty species in the tropics of the Old World, and usually yielding a yellow gum resin (gamboge). G. Morella, a native of India, yields the true gamboge.

MANGROVE. The remarkable “mangrove forests” which fringe tidal estuaries, overrun salt marshes, and line muddy coasts in the tropics of both Old and New Worlds, are composed of trees and shrubs belonging mainly to the Rhizophoraceae, but including, especially in the eastern mangrove formations of Further India and the Malay Archipelago, members of other orders of Dicotyledons, such as Lythraceae (Sonneratia), Verbenaceae (Avicennia), and the acaulescent Nipa-palm. Their trunks and branches constantly emit adventitious roots, which, descending in arched fashion, strike at some distance from the parent stem, and send up new trunks, the forest spreading like a banyon grove. An advantage in dispersal, very characteristic of the order, is afforded by the seeds, which have a striking peculiarity of germination. While the fruit is still attached to the parent branch the long radicle emerges from the seed and descends rapidly towards the mud, where it may even establish itself before falling off. Owing to its clubbed shape, this is always in the right position; the plummule then makes its appearance. An interesting feature of the mangrove is the air-roots, erect or kneed branches of the roots, which project above the mud, and are provided with minute openings (stomata or lenticels), into which the air passes and is then carried by means of passages in the soft spongy tissue to the roots which spread beneath the mud. The wood of some species is hard and durable, and the astringent bark is used in tanning. The fruit of the common mangrove, Rhizophora Mangle, is sweet and wholesome, and yields a light wine.

MANICHAEISM. Towards the close of the 3rd century two great religions stood opposed to one another in western Europe, one wholly Iranian, namely Mithraism, the other of Jewish origin, but not without Iranian elements, part and parcel probably of the Judaism which gave it birth, namely Christianity. Professor Franz Cumont has traced the progress of Mithraism all over the Balkan Peninsula, Italy, the Rhine-lands, Britain, Spain and Latin Africa. It was peculiarly the religion of the Roman garrisons, and was carried by the legionaries wherever they went. It was an austere religion, inculcating self-restraint, courage and honesty; it secured peace of conscience through forgiveness of sins, and abated for those who were initiated in its mysteries the superstitious terrors of death and the world to come. In these respects it resembled Christianity. Soldiers may have espoused it rather than the rival faith, because in the primitive age Christian discipline denied them the sacraments, on the ground that they were professional shedders of blood. The cumbrous mythology and cosmogony of Mithraism at last weakened its hold upon men’s minds, and it disappeared during the 4th century before a victorious Catholicism, yet not until another faith, equally Iranian in its mythology and cosmological beliefs, had taken its place. This new faith was that of Mani, which spread with a rapidity only to be explained by supposing that Mithraism had prepared men’s minds for its reception.

Mani professed to blend the teachings of Christ with the old Persian Magism. Kessler, the latest historian of Manichaeism, opines that Mani’s own declaration on this point is not to be relied upon, and has tried to prove that it was rather of Semitic or Chaldaic origin. He certainly shows that the old Assyrian mythology influenced Mani, but not that this element did not reach him through Persian channels. In genuine Manichaean documents we only find the name Mani, but Manes, Μάνης, Manichaeus, meet us in 4th-century Greek and Latin documents. In the Acta Archelai his first name is said to have been Cubricus, which Kessler explains as a corruption of Shuravik, a name common among the Arabs of the Syrian desert.

Life of Mani.—According to the Mahommedan tradition, which is more trustworthy than the account contained in these Acta, Mani was a high-born Persian of Ecbatana. The year of his birth is uncertain, but Kessler accepts as reliable the statement made by Biruni, that Mani was born in the year 527 of the astronomers of Babylon (A.D. 215-216). He received a careful education at Ctesiphon from his father Fatak, Babak or Patak (Πατέκιος). As the father connected himself at a later period with the confession of the Moghtasilah, or “Baptists,” in