« AnteriorContinuar »
geographer some important notices relative to the position of certain towns and mountains, of which only the names had formerly been conveyed to our ears. The Publishers have taken the utmost pains to embody in the map, prefixed to this volume, the results of the latest discoveries accomplished by British, French, and American travellers, under the protection of the Turkish army.
But no consideration associated with the history of Ethiopia is more interesting than the fact that the Christian religion, received about fifteen hun. dred years ago, continues to be professed by the great majority of the people. In regard to the mixture of Jewish rites with the institutions of the Gospel, still observable among the Abyssinians, I have suggested some reflections which seem calculated to throw a new light on that obscure subject. Of the literature of the same nation, so far as the relics could be collected from their chronicles and books of devotion, a suitable account has been given; connected in some degree with the brighter prospects which may yet be entertained by the friends of theological learning as arising from the well-directed efforts of certain benevolent associations in this country.
For some valuable information not hitherto published, I am indebted to William Erskine, Esq. of Blackburn, late of Bombay, who kindly placed in my hands two large manuscript volumes, containing Travels and Letters written in the East. Among
these is a number of communications from Mr Nathanael Pearce, during his residence in Abyssinia, addressed to several British Residents at Mocha and Bombay, and embracing the more prominent events of his history between the years 1810 and 1818.
In like manner I have to express my obligations to Captain Armstrong of the Royal Artillery, who, in the course of his travels in Nubia, made drawings and measurements of the principal temples as far south as Wady Halfa. By means of these I have been enabled to ascertain the exact dimensions of several of those structures, the views of which have been given by some recent tourists with more attention to elegance than to professional accuracy in the details.
In order to render this little volume as complete as possible, the Publishers obtained the assistance of two eminent naturalists, Mr Wilson and Dr GREVILLE; to the former of whom the reader owes the instructive chapter on Zoology, while to the latter he is under a similar obligation for the Botanical outline, in which are ably described the vegetable productions of the Abyssinian provinces.
To complete the plan entertained with respect to Africa, there remains yet one volume, which will appear in due time, on the History, Antiquities, and Present Condition of the BARBARY STATES.
EDINBURGH, March 1833.
Plan to be followed in this Chapter-Nubian Valley-Sterility-
Former Cultivation----Dondour-Derr --Ibrîm—Wady Halfa-
of Paez_Arrival of Mendez-His Proceedings as Patriarch