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Bantu Negroes.


of roots in common.

For the sake of convenience they may be divided into east, west, and inland tribes.2 The eastern tribes are again divisible into the people of Zanzibar, including the Suaheli, the Mozambique nations from the coast to Lake Nyassa, the Betshuans further inland, and, lastly, the so-called Kaffirs. The tribes of the interior are the hordes, as yet little known, of the Ba-yeiye, the Ba-lojazi, the Ba-toka, the Ba-rotse, etc. Still more numerous are the western tribes in the Atlantic districts. They are separable, first, into the Bunda nations, including the Herero 3 (erroneously called Damara), the Ovambo and their kinsmen, the Nano, or Ba-nguela, in Benguela, and the A-ngola in Angola. The second division of the western group is represented by the Congo negroes, consisting of the true Congos and the Mpongwe. Lastly, to a third division belong a number of northwestern languages, such as the Ba-kele in the Di-kele, the Benga on the Gaboon, the Dualla in the Cameron Mountains, and the Isubu, and the language of the totally naked Adiya of Fernando Po, who have but recently made their appearance there. Finally, the remarkable Bafan or Fan negroes must be mentioned, who not long ago migrated from the interior to the coast, and who make remarkable toothed iron missiles, like those of the Sandeh, or Niam-Niam, and some of the Hamite tribes of Nubia.5


We shall begin their enumeration at the Niger and, advancing westwards and describing the shape of a horse-shoe, return to the

2 Bacmeister in the Ausland, p. 580. 1871.

* Their language is used for intercourse by many other tribes. Hahn, Petermann's Mittheilungen, p. 290. 1867.

4 Like all other islands of the Atlantic, it was found uninhabited by the Portuguese. The Adiya, on the contrary, came from the Gaboon district, from which they were expelled by the Mpongwe. Windwood Reade, Savage Africa, p. 63. The name of Adiya is said to signify merely dwellers in villages. Bastian, San Salvador, p. 317. Bremen, 1859.

5 Du Chaillu, Explorations and Adventures, 1861. It is possible that the name of Ba-fan was only given to them by their neighbours, but in that case they ought perhaps to be placed in a totally different group.

White Nile. In the lower course of the Niger, the Ibo language is spoken, and from the Benue upwards the Nuffi language, neither of which has hitherto been examined. Westwards follows the Ewhe language, which includes the dialects of Joruba, Dahomey, and that of the Mahi, which appears further inland. Allied to these are the languages of the negroes on the Gold Coast who speak Odshi, as do the Ashantees, the Akim, the Akwapim, the Akwamboo, and the Akra. There are many tribes also on the Ivory and Pepper Coast, among which the Kru are best known, on account of their heroic stature and their skill on the sea. In language they are more nearly allied to the Ashantees and Fantees than to the Mandingo, from whom, however, they have borrowed a large number of words. Mande, which is the language of the Mandingo, includes many dialects. Among them is the language of the Vei,' who possess the art of writing, and also the Soso and Bambara. These latter form the word by additions to the roots, and some of their suffixes are used independently, thus affording a clue to the meaning when employed for purposes of definition. The Mande negroes have spread between the 10th and 15th degrees of latitude, from the coast to the upper part of the Niger. Between the Gambia and the Senegal (which river now, as in ancient times, divides the negroes from the Berbers), live the Joloffers, the finest of the negro races, whose language still stands alone. The small space between the River Gambia and Scherboro is thickly occupied by the various languages of the Sererer, or Sárar, and Fulup family, in which, as among the Bantu negroes, prefixes are used.3


Turning further inland, to the countries belonging to the district of the Niger, the first people encountered are enigmatical people, which has conquered and penetrated far into the interior. These are the Fulbe (singular Pulo), called Fulah by the Mandingo, Fellani by the Hausaua, Fellata by the Kanuri. The term Fulbe means "the Yellows or "the Browns," and was meant to express the contrast with black negroes.4 Mungo


1 S. W. Koelle, Outlines of a Grammar of the Vei Language, p. 2. London, 1854.

2 Steinthal, Die Mandenegersprachen, p. 67. Berlin, 1867.

4 Ibid.

3 Koelle, Polyglotta africana. London, 1854.


Park,5 who saw them in the west, speaks of their fair colour and glossy hair. A well-formed nose and small lips are universally attributed to them, but such peculiarities occur also among other negroes, and vary too much to be a mark of race. Barth 6 also observes, that as early as twenty years of 66 age an ape-like expression effaces their Caucasian features." By their dignity, polish, great respect for property, and also by their artistic taste, the Fulbe are very favourably distinguished from other Africans. Their type has, however, long ago lost its purity by intermixture with negro women. Yet in the central parts of the kingdom of Sokoto, that is to say, far in the interior, Rohlfs still found several among the Fulbe of yellowish white colouring, and “an European form of face." Only the hair was "brilliantly black and crimped."7 Were we therefore to depend solely on the character of the hair, we should be obliged to classify the Fulbe among the negroes. Rohlfs considers, however, that philological research can alone show the true position of this race in a system of ethnology. According to Barth, their language has much in common with the Hausa, but these resemblances have been borrowed in recent times. The names of numbers again recall the prefix languages of Southern Africa, and the language as a whole is really akin to that of the Joloffers, who are true negroes, and to Kadshaga, the language of the former kingdom of Ghana, which otherwise stands quite alone. The Fulbe did not originally belong to Senegal, for in the 7th century A.D. they were still cattle-breeders and hunters in the oases of Tauat and in the south of Morocco; their progress, as, for instance, the adoption of the cultivation of rice and cotton, was due to the influences of the Kadshaga. They are therefore either an extreme variety of the negro race or an early hybrid people of half-Berber, half-Soudan blood. To constitute them a separate race, or to suppose them to have migrated from Asia in prehistoric times, must be left to other and more imaginative ethnologists.

Midway between the source and the mouth of the Niger live


5 Travels in the Interior of Africa.

Petermann's Mittheilungen, No. 34, p. 45. Appendix, 1872.

7 Caillié says the same of the Fulbe in Futa Djalon. Voyage à Tembouctoo, vol. i. p. 328. Paris, 1830.

the Sonrhay, whose language occupies an entirely isolated position. But it must be observed that, according to Barth, the languages of the nations living nearest to the southern edge of the Sahara first received their grammatical form by contact with Berbers and Arabs. Up to this time they had "neither declension or conjugation, but simply joined the infinitive or substantive root of the verb to an object or a person." The influence of the Berber language was far more powerful in this direction than that of Arabic,8

The euphonious and rich Hausa language is spoken between the Niger and Bornou. In its words of number it has some relationship to ancient Egyptian, and is even placed by Lepsius among the Libyan languages, but these analogies are probably due to borrowing. It is worthy of note that Herodotus was acquainted with the Hausa, under the name of Ataranta, in their present places of abode.9 In Logona a language is spoken which belongs to the Masa group. Barth held the Wandala or Mendara language to be related to the Hausa; Rohlfs, on the contrary, considered it to be allied to the Kanuri. 10 The latter, the language spoken in the kingdom of Bornou, has points of resemblance to the Téda, which extend to the essential nature of verbal structure (" das innerste Wesen der Wortbildung "). The Téda, Tebu, or Tibbu occupy the district west of the Libyan desert, and are in possession of the salt mines of Bilma and of the oasis of Fesan, where their representatives are of the negro type." Barth identifies them with the Garamantes of the ancient geographers, in which case the evidence of the language would tend to show that a branch of the negro race had spread across the desert to the neighbourhood of the Mediterranean. Barth has probably misinterpreted the facts, for the negro type of the Fesans may be traced to intermarriages with Soudan women. Nachtigal, who was better acquainted with the Téda, perceived

8 Henr. Barth, Centralafrikanische Vocabularien.

Gotha, 1862.

Barth (Vocabularien) derives àrápavтes in Herodotus from a-tara, the assembled (confederates), and tara in Hausa means to assemble.

10 Appendix to Petermann's Mittheilungen, No. 34, p. 21.
11 Von Maltzan, Tunis und Tripolis, vol. iii. p. 325. 1870.

Hausa and Maba Languages.


nothing of the negro in their features, 12 while the Kanuri realize the ideal ugliness of the race.13 But Nachtigal accounts for the resemblance of the Téda and Kanuri languages by supposing that the latter was developed by the adoption of Téda forms. On this theory the Téda do not belong to the negro race. 14

Bagrimma in Baghirmi, and a family of languages in Wadar, which is named Maba, are separate languages further eastwards. In the towns of Darfur and Kordofan both Arabic and Barabric are spoken, and nothing is known as to the position of the language of the natives of the country. The lowest of all negro tribes inhabit the district of the White Nile. From latitude 11° southwards, we find the Shillook, the Nuehr, the Dinka, and west of the latter the Luoh (Djurs), the Bongo (Dohr), and the Sandeh (Niam-Niam). 15 The relationship of these languages has not yet been examined, and nothing is known except that the Luoh (Djurs) and the Bellanda tribes are offshoots from the Shillook. 16 Lastly, the Bongo (Dohr) language is said to have some affinity to the Maba of Wadai and the Bagrimma on the one hand, and to the Nuba on the other." The languages of the Elliab, the Bohr, and the Bari tribes are still unclassified, as is that of the remarkable Monbuttoo, who are estimated at a million individuals, and inhabit a district of 81,000 square miles on the Uellé.

In their physical character the Dinka and Shillook negroes closely resemble the Fundi negroes on the Blue Nile, the founders of the kingdom of Sennaar in the sixteenth century, which they maintained for three centuries. The Fundi are mesocephalic, but very prognathous; their hair is several inches long, and becomes crimped; their skin, which has a strong odour, varies from brown to blue-black, with the exception of the hand and the sole of the foot, which are of a flesh-coloured red; the finger

12 Petermann's Mittheilungen, p. 280. 1870.

13 Zeitschrift für Erdkunde, vol. vi. p. 344.


14 Dr. Nachtigal in Petermann's Mittheilungen, p. 328.


15 We follow the linguistic chart of G. Schweinfurth and his observations in the Globus. The bracketed names are taken from the Dinka language.

16 Schweinfurth, Zeitschrift für Ethnologie, vol. iv. Supplement, p. 61. 1872. 17 Hartmann, Nilländer, p. 210.

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