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and which formed an admirable assembly-room for the principal inhabitants of the vale. This species of tree is by no means lofty in proportion to its bulk, but throws forth its branches horizontally to a considerable extent: at the level of the ground, it pushes out side-roots, which radiate from the stem to a great distance all round, while the tap-root penetrates perpendicularly to an immense depth. The inside of the plant is filled with pith, which is subject to a sort of canker that appears not to affect the growth or luxuriance of the branches. The flower closes at night, and opens with the dawn. The leaves are employed in different uses : the bark is manufactured into cordage, and the 'fruit is used for food and medicine.
The inhabitants of Coqué gave M. Mollien a rude and bois. terous reception, but the chief conducted himself with courtesy and hospitality. After crossing uninhabited woods and parched plains, be quitted the kingdom of Cayor, and entered upon the territory of the Bourb-Joloffs. The soil of Cayor is described as sandy but fertile, producing in abundance, millet, cotton, and indigo. The principal trees are, the tamarind, the Baobab, the gum-tree, and other species of Mimosa. The natives are, like all negroes, industrious from 'necessity, indolent by choice: they are careless of the morrow, and spend the nine months' interval between the seasons of harvest, stretched upon their mats. The sovereign is despotic, though his mandates are sometimes resisted by his more powerful chiefs. It is related of one of these, that having ascertained the intention of the Damel to take away his life, he nevertheless boldly presented himself at court, surrounded by an armed and numerous retinue.
"The tyrant had ordered a deep pit to be dug at his feet, and covered with a mat; he desired the chief whose destruction he meditated, to seat bimself on the mat, but the latter, guessing the perfidious intention of the despot, thus replied: “ Damel, I am thy slave, and worthy of reposing only in the dust upon which thy feet have trod.” By this adroit answer, he avoided the fate prepared for him. When a Damel wants a horse of great value, he sends for the general of his army. “Go," he says to him, " thou knowest that such a village contains more than one of my enemies; go, let fire and sword soon deliver me from them." The general, agreeably to the orders given him, plunders and lays waste, and the captives whom he seizes, serve to pay the price of the horse which the king requires.
M. Mollien affirms that Mohammedanism is making great progress among the inhabitants of this country, though the court continues attached to Paganism. He assigns as circumstances highly favourable to this change, the prevalence, even among beathens, of the practice of circumcision; the public schools over which the Marabouts preside, and to which all the children resort; and the sacred and inviolable character which invests the
person of the Mohammedan priest, not less among the Pagans than among the votaries of Islam. The realm of Cayor was originally an integral portion of the great Joloff country, but the Governor having rejected the authority of his sovereign, and assumed the title of Damel, the province has since remained an independent kingdom. But of the history of these states, little is accurately known, and there is considerable variation even in the scanty information afforded us on this head. M. Mollien, for instance, introduces the following tragical and romantic narrative.
· The Damel was at war with the Joloffs of the kingdom of Baol, which he afterwards annexed to his own dominions. The people of Baol, secure among their woods, had declined to fight, excepting when stratagem or their position had given them a decided advantage. At length, having issued from their forests, they appeared on the plain, preceded by their king. “ It is here,” they cried, “ that we must perish! We have been accused of cowardice, let those who thus reproach us, imitate our example: they pretend that we know only how to run away. Let each of us then make it impossible for him to save himself by flight.". At these words, each man filled his wide trowsers with sand, and, thus encumbered, fell on his knees, and began to fire. The combat continued till their ammunition was expended. Baol lost all its warriors on the field of battle; and the king of Cayor, though he saved a few, left behind a still greater number.'
This is, certainly, a very heroical and affecting story; but, independently of its improbabilities and inconsistencies, we have a good reason for rejecting it; namely, that the same revolution is recorded by M. Golberry, whose tale is very different from the romance just cited. He simply states, that the Damel of Cayor, on the death of the king of Baol without heirs, took unresisted possession of the country.
About the middle of February, M. Mollien reached Ouamkrore, the capital of the Bourb-Joloffs, which he found to be nothing more than a considerable village. The monarch was
an old man of low stature,' bis countenance prepossessing, and his behaviour, except that he was very inquisitive, frank and courteous, and such as by no means justified the weak irritability expressed, but, we suspect, not then betrayed, by his Visitant, who,
notwithstanding the favour his majesty did him of polling his 'hair, and taking him by the nose to measure its length, retired 'very much shocked by such liberties.' Though the present which M. M. had made to the chief was of very trilling amount, the kind old man sent an order to the head of the next village to furnish the traveller with a guide through the country. At Me. dina, as well as at the capital, the griots, or musicians, presented themselves in expectation of a fee, and afforded him a specimen of African invention and musical skill, by celebrating the praises
of the illustrious' white man.' During his passage through the Jolotf territory, M. Mollien excited the utmost astonishment, but was treated with great kindness. He supposes, but without assigning his reasons, that the natives were originally Numidian or Mauritanian, and that they were driven across the Zahara, and beyond the Senegal, by the invasion of the Saracens. Their kingdom was formerly the most extensive in this part of Africa, and the other black sovereigns still acknowledge in its ruler a precedency of rank, by prostrating themselves in his presence. In this realm, Heathenism predominates over Mohammedanism, but the Marabouts are here also in possession of the business of tuition, and their mild and prudent conduct will probably, in the end, procure them the ascendancy. The religion of the Pagans is unmixed Fetichism. Among the Joloffs, there exists a singular tribe, called Laaubés, between whom and our gipsies there seem to be many points of resemblance: they live a wandering life, and are professed fortune-tellers. They monopolize certain branches of manufacture, and have the reputation of possessing great wealth ; their women are excessively fond of finery, and their transient favours are in even superstitious request among the Jolofts. The Laaubés are a distinct race, acknowledging a chief who alone communicates with the government under which they may reside, and they enjoy the privilege of exemption from military service, on paying a stipulated tax.
M. Mollien crossed the Mandingue, or forest, which separates the country of the Bourb-Joloffs from the territory of Foutatoro, in company with a caravan of sixty persons. The distance was considerable, and the sufferings of the party, from thirst, great. At the first village, he was hustled and robbed of his poniard, with a decision and dexterity which would have done credit to a Fleet-street gang: by the interposition of the chief, however, he recovered his property. The country on the banks of the Saldé, a tributary of the Senegal, refreshed the eye of our Traveller with its rich verdure, and he enjoyed the luxury of bathing for the first time since quitting St. Louis. At Diaba, an attempt was made to detain him, but he succeeded, by the aid of a Mohamme dan priest, in extricating himself, and without further difficulty reached Sedo, the capital of Foutatoro,--a town containing six thousand inhabitants, and situated in the midst of a rich and highly cultivated plain, well-wooded, and shewing the comfort and opulence of its tenants by the size and number of its villages. The Almamy gave him a courteous reception, and in return, M. Mollien told him that he was joumeying to Oulli, to weep over the tomb of his father, whom the Pagans had murdered there; that he hoped to collect the remains of his paternal property; and that, on his return, he expected to be able to make a handsome acknowledgement to his credulous auditor for his
kindness. We would not exercise too nice a casuistry on these occasions, but we must be permitted to remark, that M. Mollien does not appear to ' make conscience' of veracity, and that, though he professes to have been vastly affected by the piety of the natives in their attention to the devotions prescribed by their faith, it does not seem to have stimulated hiin to an equally punctual observance of his own religious duties; for, when pressed upon that point, be evaded inquiry by the ready lie,' that his journal was the repository of his prayers, and the act of writing in it, a devotional exercise. A present of coral to the ruler, and to Aldondou, a powerful chief, smoothed every difficulty, and M. M. departed. At Ogo, he was greeted by the Iman Fonebé with Bon jour, Monsieur. This man, having visited St. Louis, and been well treated there, was even profuse and polished in his attentive and delicate hospitality: the description given of him, conveys the idea of a very lively, amiable, and accomplished person. In the village of Senopalé, our Traveller found some female relations of his Marabout Boukari: the greeting was very cordial, avd the Mussulman was quite happy, though, when the Frenchman complimented bim on the beauty and modesty of the ladies, he whispered in return— You cannot imagine bow • deceitful the women of our country are; this modesty which
they affect, joined to the beauty of their features, and the lively • passion they seem to feel for their lovers, inflames the latter to
such a degree, that they eat them up! The plain of Senopalé is thickly set with villages, containing a population estimated at twenty-five thousand persons. In this neighbourhood resided a Marabout who had made the pilgrimage to Mecca, and who answered, in reply to queries addressed to him through Boukari, that on both sides of the river, and beyond Tombuctoo, there were countries entirely peopled by Poula (Foulah) negroes; that the Dyaliba (Joliba or Niger) joined the Nile, and, mingling with the river of Egypt, flowed to the sea. At Banai, M. MolJien was compelled to return to Almamy, and, when he expressed bis exasperation at this detention, the natives only laughed at his anger and menaces.
• One in particular,' he says, 'gave me an answer, to which, I must own, I could find no reply. “ Thou complainest,” said he to me, "of being unceasingly questioned, and exposed to a thousand vexations; but we are very differently treated when we go to St. Louis: a soldier, one day, was going to kill me for not answering, when he cried ti vive, (que vite?) words which I did not understand.”
On his way back, M. Mollien was introduced to the chief of Bondou, also called by the official title of Almamy, who was ir alliance with the ruler of Foutatoro, and now visited him on national business. This chief, an old man of sixty, treated M. M. with courtesy, and promised his protection wben be should pass
through his dominions. Almamy of Foutatoro, though he appeared in no pleasant mood when the travellers came into his presence, suffered himself to be appeased, and M. Mollien joined bis train in its march to Canel. The description of this little army' is rather too highly coloured, and is not, in fact, quite consistent with itself; for, after a rather degrading account of the individuals who made up this ragged regiment, we are told that it presented' an imposing appearance,' that the dress of the warriors resembled that of the Mamelukes, and that three hundred black cavalry, in two lines, produced a magnificent effect.' At Canel, a negro asked M. Mollien to write for him the name of Jesus Christ, under the idea that the Europeans, by pronouncing it, procured abundant riches; he further inquired how he was to obtain good things from Isa (Jesus.) Our readers will, perhaps, anticipate that the opportunity was seized to unfold the character of the Redeemer and the message of salvation :-no—the enlightened Frenchman's answer to the poor African, was comprised in a recommendation to work hard and sleep little!
For some time past, M. Niollien had been much debilitated by fever, but he now obtained a cure by drinking freely of the infusion of tamarinds.
' Feeling myself entirely recovered,' he writes, ' as if by enchantment, I set out to examine the environs of Canel. I was accompanied by a man who had lost his hearing in a very singular manner. A custom not less barbarous than extraordinary prevails in Foutatoro ; a slave who wishes to change his master, seeks by surprise or force to cut off the car of the man whom he fancies; if he succeeds, he immediately becomes the property of that person; and his old master cannot claim bim again. To ibis practice, my fellow-traveller owed his deafness; two slaves had successively cut off cach an ear, close to the head, and the wound in healing had entirely closed the auditory channel. This man was certainly very unfortunate from his reputation for kindness, which gained him the good opinion of the slaves: he must now be careful of his horses, for, as he has no ears himself, it will be these animals whose cars the fugitive slaves will next attack.'
In the neighbourhood of Canel, M. Mollien visited a hill, contaiuing iron ore, which is smelted by the natives. With much difficulty and intriguing, he secured bis passport, and, after audiences of leave from Almamy and his brother-ruler of Bondou, departed. On his route, he was informed that Foutatoro, Bondou, and Fouta Jallon, were united in a holy alliance' with the ostensible object of extirpating idolatry, and compelling the Pagans to acknowledge Mahomet. At Dendoudé, he ascertained, though the evidence does not appear quite conclusive, that a partial communication, by means of a clannel, supplied only by the overflow of a lake in the rainy season, exists between the Gambia and the Senegal. Foutatoro is a large, and on the whole, Vol. XIV. N. S.