73 2 TRAVELS TO DISCOVER
After they have finifhed their bloody banquet, they carry the head, clofe wrapt from fight in the hide, into the cavern, which they fay reaches below the fountains, and there, by a common light, without torches, or a number of candles, as denoting a folemnity, they perform their wor- fhip, the particulars of which I never could learn; it is apiece of free-mafonry, which every body knows, and no body ventures to reveal. At a certain time of the night they leave the cave, but at what time, or by what rule, I could not learn ; neither would they tell me what became of the head, whether it was ate, or buried, or how con fumed. The Abyffinians have a ftory, probably created by themfelves, that the devil appears to them, and with him they eat the head, fwearing obedience to him upon certain conditions,, that of fending rain, and a good feafon for their bees and cattle : however this may be, it is certain that they pray to the fpirit refiding in the river, whom they call the Everlaft- ing God, Light of the World, Eye of the World, God of: Peace, their Saviour, and tather of the Univerfe..
Our landlord, the Shum, made no fcruple of reciting his prayers for feafonable rain, for plenty of grafs, for the pre- fervation of ferpents, at lead of one kind of this reptile ; he alio deprecated thunder in thefe prayers, which he pro- nounced very pathetically with a kind of tone or fong ; he called the river " Moft High God, Saviour of the World ;" of the other words I could not well judge, but by the in- terpretation of Woldo. Thofe titles, however, of divinity which he gave the river, I could perfectly comprehend without an interpreter, and for thefe only I am a voucher.