The New International Encyclopædia/Africa

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AF′RICA (Lat. Africa, from Afer, inhabitant of Africa; of uncertain derivation, possibly of Phœnician origin. It seems to have been originally the designation of Carthage, as the colony of Tyre, and later extended to the whole continent. It is certain that the name Africa was first applied to the neighborhood of Carthage—the part first known to the Romans—and Afrygah, or Afrikiyah, is still applied by the Arabs to the land of Tunis). A continent of the eastern hemisphere, and in point of size the second of the great land divisions of the globe, with an area of about 11,230,000 square miles, exclusive of islands. The continent ranks third in size only by virtue of an unwarranted composite naming of the American continents. Africa is an independent continent in even less degree than is either of the two Americas, for it forms the southwesterly extension of the Old World land-mass, and it lies in close proximity to Asia and Europe, with both of which continents it has, during long periods of past geological time, been intimately united by broad isthmuses. In form Africa consists of two parts, a northern ellipsoid, with an east and west longitudinal axis, comprising the Sahara-Sudan region, and a southern triangular limb attached to the southern side of the eastern half of the northern portion, and consisting of the Congo region and the South African highlands. Somewhat north of the middle point of the eastern side of the continent, a massive triangular projection, the Somali Peninsula, extends almost 1000 miles toward the Indian Peninsula of Asia. The extreme length of Africa from Cape Blanco in Tunis (lat. 37° 20′ N. ), its most northerly point, to its southern termination. Cape Agulhas (lat. 34° 51′ S.), is about 5000 miles in an almost north and south direction; and its greatest width from its western outpost, Cape Verde (long. 17° 30′ W.), to its eastern apex, Ras Hafun, on Cape Guardafui (long. 51° 28′ E.), is about 4500 miles in an almost west and east direction. The northern and southern points of the continent are almost equidistant from the equator; so that Africa, compared with South America, has a greater proportion of its area situated in the torrid zone.

At its northeast corner, by the Isthmus of Suez, Africa has a geographic union ninety miles wide with Asia. Until a comparatively recent period it had a much closer union, for the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden now occupy the deep, narrow basin of a rift valley that has been formed since Pliocene time. On the north, the Mediterranean Sea separates Africa from Europe by a wide and deep basin that is restricted at its western end, so that the shores of Spain and Morocco approach to within about nine miles of each other. This northern Mediterranean coast is broken only by the broad and shallow embayment that holds the gulfs of Cabes and Sidra. The western extension, from Gibraltar to Cape Palmas, projects into the Atlantic Ocean with a regularly rounded coast line that is almost unbroken by bays or peninsulas, capes Blanco and Verde being inconspicuous projections. From Cape Palmas the coast runs eastward along the north shore of the Gulf of Guinea for about 1200 miles to Kamerun and thence in an undulating line, slightly east of south, for nearly 3000 miles to Cape Agulhas at the southern extremity of the continent, where the Atlantic and Indian oceans meet. The eastern coast of the southern limb, washed by the Indian Ocean, extends from Cape Agulhas with gentle curves for 3600 miles to Cape Guardafui at the apex of the Somali Peninsula.

The coast line of Africa is peculiar in that it presents a remarkably even front, almost unbroken by bays and peninsulas, contrasting strongly in this respect with the coast lines of Europe, Asia, and North America, but resembling that of South America. The length of the coast line of Africa, 18,400 miles, bears a smaller proportion to the shortest possible periphery of a regular figure of its own area (the proportion is 1.8 to 1) than does that of any other continent. The only irregular portion of the coast line is on the northern edge, where the Atlas Mountains send spurs into the Mediterranean Sea. This regularity of the shore line is undoubtedly due to the plateau character and the stability of the larger part of the continent, which during great periods of geological time has stood emerged at approximately the same level above the ocean.

Islands. In connection with the regularity of the coast line, it is of interest to note the small number of islands adjacent to this continent, and also the small proportion of these that have any physical relations with the mainland. Madagascar, off the eastern coast, is the only large island near the continent; it was at a distant period of geological time an integral part of the mainland, but it is now separated from it by the Mozambique Channel, which appears to be a rift valley analogous to that of the Red Sea. The Seychelles, the islands in the vicinity of Zanzibar (Mafia, Zanzibar, and Pemba), and Socotra, off the apex of the Somali Peninsula, may be considered as fragments of the continental mass, while many of the small islands along the east coast, including those in the Red Sea, are of volcanic and coral reef origin, and rise apparently from submerged portions of the continental plateau. On the Mediterranean coast the islands of Djerba and Kerkinah in the Gulf of Cabes were formerly united to the mainland, and in past geological times even the island of Sicily was part of a chain of folded mountains that extended from the Tunisian highlands northeastwardly across the Mediterranean Sea. Off the western extension, the Madeira, Canary, and Cape Verde archipelagoes are of volcanic origin, and appear to lie on the outer submerged slope of the continent, perhaps marking lines of folding and fracture that are extended under the ocean level. The Bissagos group, thirty in number, lying a short distance south of Cape Verde, are small fragments of the mainland. From the Bissagos group, the coast is free from islands as far as the head of the Bight of Biafra, where four volcanic islands, Fernando Po, Prince, St. Thomas, and Annobon, extend in a southwestward direction from Mount Kamerun on the coast. Southward from this point the coast has but few islands, and these of small size, all the way to the Cape of Good Hope; and this same condition, in even more marked degree, is continued along the eastern coast for 2500 miles to the island of Mafia. The small extent of Africa's island territory is expressed by its proportion to the mainland area, which is as 1 to 48.

Topography. The typical expression of African topography is that of a plateau that rises here and there by successive terraces to increasing elevations up to and beyond 4000 feet, which altitude is the general level of the highland region that covers a large part of the southern and eastern portion of the continent. The edges of the continental mass are as a rule somewhat more elevated than is the interior, and the plateau rims approach close to the sea. Only along the eastern part of the Mediterranean shore and along that part of the Atlantic seaboard between Cape Juby, near the Canaries, and Freetown, can there be said to exist a coastal plain that extends for any considerable distance toward the interior. Swampy districts of limited extent are found along the upper Guinea shore and on the east coast about the mouths of the Zambezi River, and a lowland borders the south side of the Somali Peninsula. The mean elevation of Africa, obtained by a reduction of all irregularities of the surface, has been estimated to be about 2100 feet, which is about equal to that of South America and somewhat less than that of North America, while it is greatly exceeded by the mean elevation of the Eurasiatic continent.

NIE 1905 Africa - physical map.jpg
Lowlands, below 1,000 Feet elevation, are shown in Green. Highlands, above 1,000 Feet elevation, are shown in Buff.

The topography of the interior presents over large areas a marked uniformity of expression, though different regions exhibit distinctive features. The general plateau character of the surface is broken in the interior of the continent by four areas of depression which in the south and north are occupied by basins of internal drainage. In the southern highland is the Kalahari-Ngami Desert (altitude 2250-3000 feet); the central plateau falls toward its middle to form the Congo Basin (altitude 600-1600 feet); in the central Sudan the Lake Chad (altitude 900 feet) and Bodele (altitude 500 feet) depressions receive the drainage of a great interior region that has no outlet to the sea; and in the northwestern Sahara several inclosed basins lie at altitudes of from 400 to 600 feet above the ocean.

Africa is divided topographically into the following regions: (1) the elevated Southeastern Highlands, (2) the Sahara and Sudan plateau of lower level that covers the entire central and most of the northern part of the continent, and (3) the narrow, comparatively small area of the Atlas Mountains on the extreme northwest coast. On the whole, the general slope of the surface is from the southeast to the northwest.

The highest portions of the continent, called the Southeastern Highlands, lie near the eastern coast and in the lower end of the southern limb. They are limited on the north by an irregular line that may be drawn from Loanda on the west coast, at the mouth of the River Kuanza, eastward to Ankoro on the Upper Congo, thence northward to Daruma, and through Lado and Kassala to Suakin on the Red Sea. Northward from Suakin the eastern highland is continued as a narrow ridge of lower elevation along the western shore of the Red Sea almost to Cairo. This great highland region may be topographically considered to form the backbone of the continent, though it is scarcely that in a geologic sense, for the rocks of which it is composed lie generally horizontal, and the differences of topography are the result of long continued erosion and denudation rather than of mountain-making forces. This highland has an elevation of over 4000 feet, and above this height rise numerous isolated and grouped peaks to altitudes of 10,000 feet and over. The majority of these high peaks are remnants of a dissected plateau of still higher level, while others are volcanic mountains that rest upon the table-land and rise above it to still greater heights of from 12,000 to 20,000 feet. The central depression of the Kalahari Desert and Ngami Basin in the southern part of the highland, and the deep valleys cut by the rivers that drain this interior basin, serve to divide this southern region into four well-marked isolated plateaus. The most southerly plateau occupies the Cape, Natal, Orange River, and Transvaal colonies, and their seaward edges, known as the Roggeveld, Schnee, Zwarte, and Drakenberg mountains, rise in single peaks of 9000 to 11,000 feet. North of the Transvaal, between the Limpopo and the Zambezi valleys, is the less extensive plateau of Matabeleland. with an average level of 4500 feet and a single peak (Mashona Mountain, 7300 feet), near its eastern edge. On the western side of the continent, between the Kalahari-Ngami Basin and the Atlantic coast is the plateau of German West Africa, covering Damara and Great Namaqualand. This plateau rises to somewhat lesser single heights than does the plateau of British South Africa: Kara (6500 feet), Awas (6530 feet), and Omatoka (8700 feet). Northward of all these, and extending from west to east through Angola and British Central Africa to the vicinity of lakes Nyassa and Tanganyika, where it joins the great eastern highland, is a broad plateau 750 miles wide from north to south and 1500 miles from west to east, with a general elevation of 3000 to 6000 feet. This forms the divide between the Ngami and Zambezi basins on the south and the Congo waters on the north, and has its highest points on the west end in the plateau of Bihe (Lovili Mountains, 7800 feet), and at the eastern end in the plateau mountain of Chitane (6500 feet) near Nyassa Lake. Toward the south it slopes gradually to the Ngami and Zambezi basins, and toward the north it falls more abruptly to the Congo region. Near the eastern end are two lakes, Moero or Meru (3000 feet), and Bangweolo (3700 feet), that drain into the Upper Congo River.

Stretching northward from the Zambezi River to the Red Sea is that great eastern highland which attains its most extensive development just south of the equator in the region about the Victoria Nyanza. Through a large part of its extent this highland maintains an elevation of over 5000 feet, which in Abyssinia rises over considerable areas to heights of six, eight, and ten thousand feet. The main highland extends northward nearly to Suakin, and a narrow, interrupted spur reaches eastward from lakes Abba and Zuway to the apox of the Somali Peninsula, with peaks declining in height from Mount Mulata (9840 feet) to Godobb (4875 feet) at Cape Guardafui. The surface of this eastern highland is traversed longitudinally by a great system of so-called rift-valleys that constitute the most important feature of East African topography, and with which is associated a system of great lakes. These rift-valleys mark the course of parallel cracks in the earth's crust, between which the surface has sunk for thousands of feet, forming narrow, elongated depressions, or broad cañons, with precipitous walls that rise to the broken edges of the high-level plateau. In these rift-valleys lie the majority of the great African lakes, most of which, consequently, are of elongated form. The longest of these rifts has its northern end in Palestine, in the Jordan and Dead Sea valleys; it forms the Red Sea Basin southward to the Straits of Bab-el-Mandeb, where it is joined by a broader rift that comes from the east, forms the Gulf of Aden, and continues southwestward through French Somaliland and the Galla country into British East Africa to lakes Stephanie and Rudolf. At this point the rift-valley divides. One branch continues southward to beyond Lake Manyara, and another trends westward from Lake Rudolf to Lake Albert, and then southward to Lake Shirwa at the southern end of the eastern highland. In addition to these great rift-valleys there are many smaller fracture lines throughout the entire highlands that exercise considerable control over the smaller drainage features.

In the vicinity of the rifts are found the highest mountains, and in general the courses of the great rifts mark the location of volcanic peaks. The massive, snow-topped Ruwenzori Range, with its central peak rising to 16,600 feet, is among the most important of African mountain ranges, and it appears to be largely of volcanic or laccolitic origin. South of Lake Albert Edward, on the eastern side of the western rift-valley, is a group of volcanic mountains, some of which are active, culminating in Mount Kirunga (4350 feet). The most extensive volcanic district, however, lies along the eastern rift-valley and on the Abyssinian highland. Kilimanjaro (19,720 feet) and Kenia (17,200 feet), two isolated, snow-clad, volcanic peaks, rise from the eastern margin of this rift-valley near its southern termination. About the southern half of Lake Rudolf is a series of volcanic peaks, where several active cones rise 2000 feet above the plains, the best known of which is Teleki. Several very high mountains lie between Lake Rudolf and the Victoria Nyanza, the highest of which is Mount Elgon (14,030 feet). The Abyssinian highland is topped by massive fields of ancient lava, from which rise extinct volcanic peaks to heights of about 15,000 feet (Mounts Dashan, Abba-Yared, etc.). A few active volcanoes occur on the northeastern slopes of Abyssinia, near the shore of the Red Sea, where a chain of mountains presents summits of 9000 to 10,000 feet.

The great topographical feature of West Central Africa is the Congo Basin, equaling in area the basin of the Mississippi, and stretching from lat. 12° S. to lat. 6° N., and from long. 33° to about 16° E., where it narrows into the restricted valley by which the river makes its way through the coastal mountains to the Atlantic Ocean. The whole of this area is an elevated plain, sloping gradually from all sides toward the middle west, where the vast outlet debouches, in lat. 6° S. It presents no elevated regions worthy of mention, except about the borders. The southeast watershed is not high, nor is that on the south, which separates the Congo waters from those flowing into Lake Ngami or collected by the Zambezi. North of Lake Tanganyika the high mountains form a lofty watershed between the northeastern sources of the Congo and the sources of the Nile, and a line of hills sweeps around to the westward in the southern Sudan, and are continued to the lofty Jebel-el-Marra, in Darfur, whose slopes contribute the remotest northern waters of the Congo. The high ranges of Adamawa and the coast mountains separate its more westerly northern tributaries from the Ogowe and other coastal rivers. The mountains which separate the Congo Basin from the coast are rather the broken eroded margin of the continental plateau than true mountains, and few if any peaks exceed 5000 feet in height.

The topographical division of Sudan covers the equatorial area between the watershed of the Congo and the Sahara Desert, from the headwaters of the Bahr-el-Ghazal, a tributary of the Nile, to the mountains of the coast—that is, the drainage basins of Lake Chad and of the Niger. The basin of Lake Chad is an inclosed area almost in the centre of the continent, its southern margin being removed but a few hundred miles from the head of the Gulf of Guinea. The lake itself has no outlet, and lies about 900 feet above the sea. The eastern border of this basin is separated from the Nile waters by a line of highlands which continue northward across the desert, and which culminate in Darfur in the Marra Mountains, rising some 7000 feet above the plain, and forming a watershed for eastern Sudan. The western border of the Chad Basin is formed by rocky plateaus, which constitute a divide between this and the Niger Basin; and a uniform plain, diversified by rocky hills, stretches westward to the coast mountains. Large portions of the Chad Basin are dry and open, while other extensive areas are forested or swampy, passing northward into desert. At the head of the Gulf of Guinea are the Kamerun Mountains, more than 13,000 feet high. Further westward along the coast of Upper Guinea there are mountains, but of no great height, the supposed “Kong Range” of old geographies having been proved non-existent. The highest peaks of the hinterland of Sierra Leone and the Mandingo Mountains do not exceed 3,500 feet, except in the Peak of Komono (4600 feet). The coast of Senegal is flat; that more southerly, except in Liberia, swampy; all the rivers, and especially the Niger, form extensive deltas.

The region of arid waste lands called the Sahara lies between the Sudan on the south and the Atlas Mountains and the Egyptian coast on the north. It is a part of an arid belt extending eastward to Baluchistan, the entire area measuring about 4,000,000 square miles. Of this area at least two-thirds lies west of Suez, and is known in general as the Sahara. It is all an elevated plain, into which many valleys have been eroded by the ancient drainage systems which are now the only marked topographical features of the region. The whole area may, therefore, be divided into certain regions, limited by natural features. First, the so-called Arabian or Nubian Desert; the area between the Nile, the only living river that crosses the arid zone, and the Red Sea. This is marked in its southern portion by the continuation of the volcanic uplands of Abyssinia, which lessen in height toward the north, but border the Red Sea in a line of jagged mountains, many of which exceed 4000 feet, and one, Soturba, reaches 6900 feet. In the south is the great rift of the Wady Mahall, probably an ancient Nile channel; and in Lower Egypt are the rifts occupied by the Khargeh, Dakhel, and others, forming a line of notable oases. West of the Nile rises the desolate plateau of the Libyan Desert, which covers the whole region from central Darfur to the Mediterranean (long. 18° to 30° E.), excepting the few oases above mentioned. Its general altitude varies from about 1500 feet in the south to 500 on the Mediterranean, where it breaks down in hills. A line of elevations extending northwestward from the Marra Mountains in Darfur to the Algerian Atlas forms a sort of boundary to the Libyan Desert, and makes possible the thinly inhabited oasis regions of Tibesti and Murzuk. Further west there are wadies, or dried-up river valleys, of which one, with numerous branches, is traceable from the Tropic of Cancer north to the “shotts” or swampy lakes which occupy the large, low plain (in places below sea-level) west of the Gulf of Cabes. It is believed that within 2500 years this valley was occupied by a flowing river, but now only a few pools and springs exist through the dry season. West of this more broken region between Algeria and Lake Chad there stretches an enormous space of waterless waste land, with shifting sand dunes, broken by lines of rugged and naked elevations having a general northeast and southwest direction. This waste extends to the Atlantic coast all the way from about lat. 18° to 28° N., that is, from the hills of Senegal to the western extremity of the Atlas. The elevation of the Sahara throughout the greater part of its extent exceeds 1000 feet, diminishing gradually from the south toward the north in the Libyan Desert, and from its centre in the western half of the desert toward the Lake Chad Basin and the Niger, and toward the coast of Tunis and Tripoli. Only very small and irregular areas along the northern border are below the level of the Mediterranean.

The elevated district called the Atlas Region, with its littoral margin along the Atlantic Ocean and Mediterranean Sea, is a part of the great Alpine system of Europe, to which it is linked by the mountains of Spain and the Pyrenees. Unlike other African mountains, the Atlas have a folded structure and an Alpine character, and present many parallel zones. These ranges extend in a nearly straight line from Cape Nun, on the Atlantic, northeast to the headlands of Tunis, where they are broken through by the narrows of the Mediterranean. Along the Mediterranean coast the elevations are volcanic, and descend very abruptly. Toward the interior, irregular ranges form a long line of heights of Paleozoic rocks, which is sometimes called the Tell Atlas; but this is more prominent in Algeria than in Morocco, where the seaward side is a rough plateau. The Atlas stretches over a distance of about 1400 miles, and attains its greatest elevation in the western portion, where it rises to a height of nearly 15,000 feet.

Geology. The geological structure of Africa has been studied only in bare outline, but its broad features may be said to exhibit great simplicity and uniformity. The entire lower limb, with the Sudan and the western portion of the Sahara Desert, has a basal complex of crystalline rocks supporting sediments of Paleozoic and Mesozoic age. Strata of more recent deposition, with but one exception (Lower Egypt), occur only along the sea coast and the rivers. The greater part of the land surface, therefore, was formed in early geological times, and has remained above sea-level during succeeding periods. Owing to this uniformity, Africa cannot be divided upon a strictly geological basis into more or less distinct units; such a division, however, has been made from a combined geological and geographical standpoint, separating the entire area into three provinces. The first of these comprises South Africa, Madagascar, and a huge portion of Central Africa, which at one time was united with lower India by an easterly land extension through the area now occupied by the Indian Ocean; the second includes the Sahara Desert and Egypt, and is a continuation of Arabia and Syria; the third comprises the Atlas Mountains, and is really a part of the Eurasian continent and of the great system of upheaval that is represented in Europe by the Alps and the Apennines.

The most ancient rocks found in South Africa are granites, gneisses, and schists, which lie below all fossil-bearing rocks, and may, therefore, be classed as Archæan. Above these are tilted and eroded beds of sandstones and slates, which form the rampart along the southern extremities of Cape Colony, and extend around to the west and north, spreading out over large areas in Namaqualand, Griqualand, Rhodesia, and regions to the north, and which have special economical importance, as they include within their limits the rich gold deposits of the Transvaal. These rocks are mostly of Paleozoic age. Higher up in the series are the Kimberley shales and the Karoo formation of sandstones and slates, which attain great development in British South Africa. No remains of a sea fauna have been found in the Karoo beds, but they are rich in ampliihian and reptilian fossils that bear a striking similarity to the Triassic (Gondwana) life-forms of India, and also to those of Australia. They were probably deposited during the Permian and Triassic periods. Underlying them unconformably in places are the Dwyka conglomerate, a peculiar rock that often has the appearance of a volcanic breccia, and the Ecca mudstones and sandstones, constituting a group some 4000 feet in thickness. Volcanic rocks are represented by diabase and basalt, which are spread out over the surface in large sheets, being especially prominent along the eastern edge of the Drakenberg Mountains in the Transvaal. The diamond mines of South Africa are located in the vents of old volcanoes through which a basic rock (peridotite) was erupted. On the other edge of the plateau, along the sea coast, are small detached areas of sediments, more recent in origin than the foregoing.

The region of central Africa from the Sudan as far south as the Zambezi River includes large areas of which little or nothing is known. Livingstone mentioned the presence of sandstones and coal seams along the Zambezi River (lat. 16° 40' to 15° 50' S.), and somewhat further south crystilline rocks of Archæan type appear, as also along the shores of Lake Nyassa. The Rovuma River flows for a considerable distance (about lat. 11° S.) over sandstone beds, that rest upon granite. The sandstones are found as high as 2500 feet above sea-level, and extend from near the coast to long. 39° E. North of the Rovuma River sandstone strata, possibly of Carboniferous age, are developed on a large scale along two general lines, one extending northwest beyond the shores of Lake Tanganyika, and the other extending north to near the equator. Between the diverging areas of sandstone, crystalline rocks predominate, inclosing Lake Victoria Nyanza and reaching northward nearly to Lado on the Nile. They have been broken through and are overlaid by volcanic rocks, especially around Lake Rudolf, where volcanoes are still in eruption, and in the region east of Victoria Nyanza, where there are many inactive cones. Volcanic action has been accompanied here by great vertical displacements, to which allusion has already been made. (See also article on Great Rift-Valley.) The west side of Central Africa, from the Kunene River to the Gulf of Guinea, has been only partly explored. Such information as is available would indicate that its structure is similar to that of the eastern coast. On the shore of Angola there is a narrow fringe of Cretaceous sandstones, and in the interior crystalline rocks, mostly granite and gneiss, and fossiliferous sandstones of undetermined age predominate. It seems probable that these formations extend into the interior toward the Congo Basin, and they may reach also northward into the Sudan. In the Congo Basin there comes into prominence a peculiar superficial deposit called “laterite,” which also covers wide areas in Sudan and the Sahara Desert. It is a porous, yellow or reddish rock, formed by the disintegration and weathering of the underlying strata.

The plateau of Abyssinia has been found to consist of gneisses and granites as a basal formation, with overlying sandstone strata in nearly horizontal position. This region is especially characterized by the enormous development of volcanic rocks, which at different times have spread out over the surface. Westward, between Khartum and Fashoda on the Nile, there is a large area of Paleozoic sediments, extending on the eastern Nile bank as far south as Lado, where it sweeps around to the west. In central Sudan, crystalline rocks have been found along the Benue River and in the region between this river and the Niger. In the extreme western Sudan, sedimentary strata with Devonian and Carboniferous fossils prevail; they are also developed to a lesser extent on the Gold Coast, where they overlie gneisses and schists. The interior of Liberia and Sierra Leone is supposed to be composed largely of crystalline rocks. The Sahara Desert presents a monotonous stretch of horizontal eroded beds of Paleozoic age resting upon eruptives and gneisses. After the Carboniferous times, the whole Sahara region appears to have been elevated above sea-level and to have maintained this position until the beginning of the Cretaceous, when there was a subsidence, and the eastern part of the Sahara, including Egypt, was formed. Volcanic rocks are found in certain parts of the interior, but they are relatively unimportant. In Lower Egypt, the ridge that forms the western border of the great rift or fault of the Red Sea is made up of gneisses, granites, and basic igneous rocks, with a sedimentary cap called the “Nubian” sandstone. The last-named constitutes the banks of the Nile at Assuan, and also extends for a considerable distance into the desert region. To the north, the Nubian sandstone is succeeded by Cretaceous and Tertiary limestones.

The Atlas region of Morocco, Algeria, and Tunis offers a striking contrast to the remainder of Africa, in that it is the only present representative of a mountain system formed by crustal folding. It is composed of eruptives, including trachyte and basalt, along the northern edge, with interfoliated gneisses, schists, granite, limestone, and sediments of Carboniferous, Jurassic, and Triassic age. Suess divides the region into parallel zones; the first is composed of volcanic rocks on the coast; the second consists of granite, gneiss, and schist; the third is a belt of sandstone and limestone, reaching southward into the Sahara Desert.

The continental islands, including the Canary, Madeira, and Cape Verde groups, and many isolated islands, are mostly of volcanic origin. Madagascar, however, is an exception, and represents the remnant of a larger area that once extended from southern Africa to lower India. The central part of Madagascar is made up of granites and gneisses similar in character to those found on the mainland, while the western shore is formed by Jurassic and Tertiary sediments. See also articles on countries of Africa.

Hydrography. The great river systems of Africa, excepting the Niger, have their sources in the mountains of the south and southeastern parts. At the Gulf of Suez a line of highlands crosses to Africa from Syria, which follows the coast line of the Red Sea to its southern extremity, then bends to the south, passes the equator, and joins the broad plateaus that extend over South Africa. As there is no prominent interior mountain range, this long line of coastal highlands forms the most important water-parting of the continent. Within its bounds are the upper courses of the Nile, Congo, and Zambezi, as well as of the Orange and of most of the smaller streams. The Nile, Niger and Congo rivers have their origin on the interior slopes of the highlands, and therefore discharge into the Atlantic Ocean, while the Zambezi drainage basin, lying largely on the outer slopes, falls off toward the Indian Ocean. The longest river system is that of the Nile, which rises in the lake region of Equatorial Africa and flows northward through the mountainous divide to the plateau region of eastern Sudan, where it receives an important affluent from the west in the Bahr-el-Ghazal. and is joined further north by the Bahr-el-Azrek (Blue Nile) and by the Atbara, both from the plateau of Abyssinia. In the middle portion of its course the Nile practically completes its vertical descent by numerous cataracts, after which it flows through a valley that is but little above the level of the sea. The drainage basin of the Nile includes an area of about 1,500,000 square miles. Next to the Nile in length and superior to it and to all other rivers of the world excepting the Amazon in volume is the Congo, which rises in the equatorial lake region and drains an area probably exceeding that of the Nile. The Congo flows northwest, then describes a great arc, with its chord formed by the equator, and finally turns southwest, and pierces the coastal barrier of lower Guinea to enter the Atlantic. The tributaries of the Congo include many great rivers, such as the Ubangi, Kassai, and Kuango. South of the Congo are the drainage basins of the Zambezi and Orange rivers, which extend nearly across the lower limb of the continent, and have an eastward and westward slope respectively. The great land-mass composing the western limb of the continent is poorly watered, the Niger being the only river of first importance lying wholly within the area. This river drains the northern slopes of the coastal highlands of Guinea, through which it breaks after being joined by an important tributary from the east, the Benue, and enters the Gulf of Guinea. Of lesser rivers may be mentioned the Limpopo, Rovuma, Sabi, Tana, and Jub, which enter the Indian Ocean, and the Kunene, Kuanza, Ogowe, Volta, Gambia, Senegal, and Draa on the western coast. Owing to the mountainous barrier through which they must pierce to reach the sea, the smaller rivers of Africa generally are unnavigable in their lower courses.

Between the drainage basins of the Nile, Niger, and Congo, and west of the north and south range of highlands of Sudan, is the interior basin of Lake Chad. This lake is fed chiefly by the Shari and Waube, and is subject to great variations of level. It is at the present time a shallow body of fresh water, with an area that is said to range at various times from 10,000 to 20,000 square miles. This phenomenon of sudden variations in level and consequently in area is peculiar to all the rivers and lakes of Africa within the equatorial regions, and is due to the seasonal distribution of rainfall. Between Abyssinia and the Zambezi River and within the bounds of the north and south highland region there is another inland drainage basin with several large lakes, which together constitute one of the most striking physiographical features of Africa. Apparently the lakes lie along a line of rifts or fissures which have been formed by sudden displacements of the earth's crust. Some of the lakes are, Margherita, Abaya, Stephanie, Rudolf, Manyara, Natron, Baringo, Eyassi, and Leopold (Rikwa), all but Rudolf being small bodies of water. The largest lakes (Victoria, Albert, Albert Edward, Kivu, Tanganyika, and Nyassa) drain into the Nile, the Congo, or the Zambezi, and are fresh water bodies. Victoria, Tanganyika, and Nyassa rival in extent the great lakes of North America. For further details, see articles on Congo, Victoria Nyanza, etc.

Climate. Of all the great land divisions of the globe, Africa is characterized by the greatest uniformity of climate. It stretches into both the north temperate and south temperate zones, but the greater part of its area is included within the tropics; there is consequently a successive decrease of average annual heat northward and southward of the equatorial belt, but the regularity of the decrease is modified by certain other factors, so that the region of greatest average heat for the year is located not at the equator but considerably north of it, between the parallels of 10° and 20°. These modifying factors are mainly the direction of the winds and the distribution of the mountains. It is, of course, cooler here in certain seasons than in others; but the average temperature of any given season shows little fluctuation. In summer the isotherm of 80° F. incloses the whole of the Sahara Desert, and over a considerable portion of this area the average summer temperature is 97° or more. This region of extreme heat, which is the largest in the world, may be delimited by a line drawn from Khartum west to Timbuktu, thence north to El-Golea in the Algerian Sahara, thence southeast to Murzuk and thence to Berber on the Nile. The mountain regions of Algeria and Morocco, and parts of British South Africa and of German South-West Africa have a subtropical or temperate climate. Throughout a large portion of Africa, especially in the mountains of the east, and in the Sahara and Kalahari deserts, the temperature varies widely between summer and winter and between day and night, as is characteristic of all desert regions. (See Desert.) In the Kalahari Desert the extreme seasonal fluctuation reaches 113°, and in the Sahara Desert the temperature during the night often approaches the freezing point. In general, the western coast of Africa is cooler than the eastern coast, owing to the conditions heretofore stated, and to the influence of the drift northward along that coast (south of the equator) of the cool water from the Antarctic Ocean. (See article on Climate.) Winds.—Trade winds are characteristic of nearly the whole continent. The Sahara Desert is a region of high barometric pressure during the winter months, thus causing outward blowing winds, while in the summer season the pressure is lowered, and there is an indraught from the surrounding territory. In the western part of the Sahara Desert and Sudan, north and northeast winds prevail during the greater part of the year, alternating with northwest and west winds for a few months in winter. The eastern Sahara region and Egypt have prevailing north and northeast winds. A devastating wind called the “khamsin” blows from the southeast across this region at times, carrying dust and sand and causing sudden rises of temperature. A similar dust wind, but usually cooler, blows from the interior of the Sahara over Senegambia and Upper Guinea, and is called the “harmattan.” During the summer, in the lower limb of Africa, an area of low pressure occurs in the interior, and the prevailing winds are from the east and southeast, on the eastern border, and south and southwest on the western. In winter there is a shorter period in which the winds blow outwardly. (See article on Wind.) Rainfall.—The principal factors governing rainfall are evaporation, direction of winds, and distribution of mountains. A combination of these factors most favorable to a large rainfall is found on the west coast of Africa near the equator. Here the humid atmosphere from the Atlantic is carried landward by the winds and, becoming cooler, deposits the greater part of its moisture before passing the highland region. The maximum limit of precipitation is probably attained in Kamerun, where the total rainfall in the year may exceed 350 inches, while the Niger Delta and the coasts of Sierra Leone and Liberia also are excessively humid. On the east equatorial coast the winds from the Indian Ocean deliver considerable moisture, but not in such abundance as on the west coast. As they pass into the interior, the winds from both the Atlantic and Indian oceans are deprived of their humidity, especially in the mountains, which act as precipitating agents. Equatorial Africa, as a whole, is thus characterized by a heavy rainfall. North and south of this region, however, the conditions exhibit a striking contrast. In the north is the Sahara Desert, the largest arid region in the world, where the prevailing winds are from the northeast and are hot and dry, while the humidity of the southerly winds that may penetrate into the interior is diminished by the heat, and seldom falls as rain. A second arid region, the Kalahari Desert, is found in the southern limb of the continent, between the Zambezi and Orange rivers and the eastern and western coastal highlands. It has a small spasmodic rainfall, which is usually insufficient to support a constant growth of vegetation. The Mediterranean coast region and the extreme southern extension have a dry climate that is tempered by rains during certain seasons. Besides the continental distribution of rainfall, there is a seasonal variation in the amount received in different latitudes. In the regions near the equator rain may fall during every month of the year, but the periods of greatest precipitation occur when the sun is nearly vertical, in spring and fall. Away from the equator there is generally but one wet season. See articles on countries of Africa.

Flora. The vegetation of Africa is very diversified on account of the well marked topographic districts and the varied climatic conditions. The three zones of tropical, north temperate, and south temperate climate have their peculiar types of vegetation, the distribution of which in each zone is determined by the immediate physiographic features. Forest, steppe, savanna, and desert floras are found in each zone. The flora of the Mediterranean slope of the northern temperate zone has a general resemblance to that of southern Europe, with forests of oak and of smaller trees, as olives and figs, with also the vine and the same cereal grains. The desert regions (typified by the Sahara in the north temperate zone and the Kalahari Desert in Bechuanaland of the south temperate zone) support a scant xerophytic vegetation, which, contrasted with the flora of the North American deserts, has for its most prominent types quite leafless, thorny and fleshy euphorbias and acacias instead of cactuses. In the Sahara Desert the date palm grows often in extensive groves in the oases, and its wide distribution is probably due in large part to the dispersion of its seeds by the nomadic tribes, for whom its fruit serves as an important article of food. Bordering the Sahara and the Kalahari deserts are extensive semi-arid steppe or prairie regions, where the slight rainfall permits of the existence of a somewhat more varied flora, which combines certain of the desert and forest types. The steppe region of the southern temperate zone has, by reason of its isolation, developed a flora peculiarly its own, which is characterized both by the abundant presence of many members of the heath family (which often grow to a height exceeding 10 feet), and also by the general brilliancy of color of the flowering plants.

Those portions of Africa which have a moist climate are divisible into the savanna and forest regions. The forests are found mostly in the equatorial districts, where they are of enormous extent. Here the trees grow to great heights (often 200 feet), and, being close together, support numbers of parasitic vines, forming over vast areas a dense, tangled covering of foliage, through which the direct rays of the sun seldom penetrate. The savanna districts are uniform plains of both high and low land. On the damp low lands, reeds, especially the papyrus, abound (as, for example, in the marshy regions of the Nile and Congo valleys); on the drier high grounds good pasture grass with euphorbias forms the dominant vegetation, together with forest growths in the river valleys. The more important trees are the baobab (Adansonia) and the wine and oil palms (Raphia and Elœis). In conclusion, it may be stated that the flora of Africa is characterized by the extensive development of acacias and euphorbias over the entire continent, with the date palm in the northern (particularly in the arid) regions, and the papyrus in the marshes. See Distribution of Plants.

Fauna. The fauna of Africa is remarkable for its homogeneity, for the continental range of a great number of its groups and species, due to the absence of extensive mountain barriers, and for its remarkable alliance with the faunæ of the other divisions of the southern hemisphere. Africa—apart from the northwestern corner (the Atlas .Mountains, in which live the aoudad and certain other European forms)—is now regarded as forming, together with Arabia and Palestine, a single zoögeographical prime division called Ethiopian. Surveying its principal groups of animals, it is seen to be characterized in respect to the mammals by the preponderance of hoofed animals and the great size of many, such as the elephant, hippopotamus, and rhinoceros, by the originally vast numbers of gregarious grazers, and by their distinctive forms. Thus, there are no true oxen, but a buffalo is abundant; no camels nor llamas; no sheep nor goats; no deer (except the aberrant chevrotain) nor true swine. But it has exclusively several species of the horse family, the zebra, quagga, and wild ass; a giraffe, once ranging all the southern plains, and the okapi (q.v.); the tribe of hyraxes, and almost a hundred kinds of antelopes and gazelles, few of which range outside of Africa and Arabia. Of apes, the chimpanzee and gorilla belong to the equatorial forests alone; but more widely distributed, though exclusively African, are the baboons, various kinds of monkeys, and nearly all the lemuroids. Among the carnivora, bears, wolves, and foxes are wholly absent, and several feline, viverrine, and canine forms are peculiar, although the characteristic lion and leopard are not restricted to Africa. The lesser mammals are mainly the same as or allied to southern Asiatic and Oriental forms. Resident birds display similar unlikeness to Europe and Asia, and suggestive resemblances to those of the Australian and Neotropical regions. Thus, the ostrich, so widespread and characteristic of Africa, is unknown elsewhere, but its allies are the extinct and modern ratite birds of the Australasian archipelago and the rheas of Argentina. Africa is rich in reptiles, but few are peculiar, chiefly terrestrial venomous snakes and the chæmasaurid lizards; and the affinities of this group, as of the fishes, are Oriental, though some of the fishes are remarkably related to ancient American families. Similar remarks apply to the invertebrates, where many genera even are the same as those of either Australia, the Malayan region, or America. For particulars as to the various faunal sub-regions, Madagascaran, West-coast, etc., see Distribution of Animals.

Population. Recent authorities roughly estimate the population of Africa at about 175,000,000, or fifteen to the square mile, a density slight when compared with that of Europe, but much greater than that of the American continent. According to the nature of the soil and of the climate, the population is distributed very unevenly over the surface, being very dense in the Nile delta and massed somewhat densely in the upper Nile valley, and generally throughout the Sudan, less thickly over the southern plateau, and very thinly in the outlying regions of Morocco and Tripoli; while large tracts, especially in the western Sahara and in the Libyan and Kalahari wastes, are absolutely uninhabited. Of the inhabitants of Africa, only a small portion are recent immigrants from Europe, settled chiefly in the extreme north (Algeria) and in the extreme south (Cape Colony, Natal, and the Boer territories).

Ethnology. The yellow, the brown, and the red varieties of the human genus have no representatives in Africa, with the exception of some of the Polynesian tribes in Madagascar and the intrusions of eastern Asiatics in recent times. The 175,000,000 inhabitants of the continent represent the white and the black varieties of man, or mixtures of these. Northern and northeastern Africa have been occupied in historic times by white races, while equatorial and southern Africa were the home of black races; but the white Africans have from remote antiquity forced themselves into the black man's territory, and negro blood has mixed with that of Hamite and Semite across the Sahara; hence, especially on the border line, the ethnic stocks are intermingled.

Various schemes of classification have been proposed for the people of Africa, the latest of which are by Deniker and Keane.

Deniker's scheme (Races of Man; an Outline of Anthropology and Ethnology, London, 1900) is as follows:

I. Arabo-Berbers, or Semito-Hamites — (1) Jjerba subrace; (2) Elles type; (3) Dolichocephalic Berber subrace; (4) Jerid or Oasis type.

II. Ethiopians, or Kushito-Hamites, sometimes called Nuba, or Nubians.

III. Fulah-Zandeh group. Mixture of Ethiopians and Nigritians or Sudanese Negroes.

IV. Nigritians, (1) eastern Sudan, or Nilotic Negroes; (2) Nigritians of central Sudan; (3) Nigritians of western Sudan and Senegal—Haussas, Mandes or Mandingans, Toucouleurs or Torodos, Yolofs of Senegal; (4) Littoral Nigritians or Guineans—Krus, Agnis, Tshis, Ewes; (5) Yorubas.

V. Negrillos.

VI. Bantus. In Central and Southern Africa; divided into Western, Eastern, and Southern Bantus.

VII. Bushmen-Hottentots.

VIII. Hovas, Malagasies, and Sakalavas of Madagascar.

Keane's analysis of African peoples is given in his Ethnology and in Stanford's Africa (see bibliography at end of article). In the latter the classification is by regions, as follows:

I. Atlas Region. Stone Age men; peoples akin to Iberians and Silurians, artificers of the monolithic monuments; Berber Hamites; Phœnician Semites; Romans; Teutonic Vandals; Semitic Arabs; Negroes; Jews and modern intrusions; and Pygmies in the Atlas Mountains.

II. Tripolitana. Berbers or Libyans in many communities; Arabs; Negroes, chiefly slaves. The Phœnicians of Herodotus are replaced by Turks, Jews, Maltese, Italians, etc.

III. Sahara. Arabs, pure and mixed in many tribes and confederacies; Tuaregs, pure and mixed; Tibus; Negroes from the south.

IV. Sudan. Arabs; Hamites (Tibus, Tuaregs, and Fulahs); Negroes, beginning at the west coast: (1) Senegal to Sierra Leone—Wolofs, Sereres, Toucouleurs, Mandingans, Felups, etc.; (2) Sierra Leone—Temnis, Colonials, etc.; (3) Liberia; (4) Ivory Coast; (5) Gold Coast—Tshis, Ga; (6) Slave Coast—Ewes, Yorubas; (7) Upper and Middle Niger—Bambaras, Songhays, Haussas, etc.; (8) Benue Basin; (9) Lower Niger; (10) Niger Bend; (11) Chad Basin; (12) Wadai; (13) Darfur and Kordofan—Nubas and Nubian family of languages; (14) Upper Nile basin—Madis, Dinkas, Shilluks, Mundus, Bongas, etc.; (15) Welle basin—Mombuttus, Niam-Niams, Akka dwarfs, etc.

V. Italian and Northeast Africa. Somali Hamites; Galla Hamites; Afar (Danakil) Hamites; Abyssinian (Agau) Hamites; Semitized Hamites; Himyaritic (Abyssinian) Semites; Tigré, Amharas, Shoas; Arab (Nomad) Semites; Negroes and Bantus.

VI. Nubia and Egypt. (1) Nuba group—Nubas proper; Nilotic Nubas (Nubians, Barabra); (2) Beja group; (3) Egyptian group—Fellahin, Copts; (4) Arab group—(a) Settled; (b) Nomad and Semi-Nomad.

VII. The Kameruns. Bantu tribes, indigenous and intruders.

VIII. French Equatorial Africa. Bantu tribes, Mpongwe and others.

IX. Congo Free State. Bantu, chiefly. Names commencing with A-, Ba-, Ma-, Wa-, etc.

X. Portuguese West Africa. Angolan tribes chiefly. (1) Ba-Congo group; (2) A-Bundo group; (3) Aboriginal group.

XI. German Southwest Africa. (1) Ovampo groups; (2) Ova-Herero groups (Damara lowlands); (3) Nama groups (Namaqualand); full-blood Hottentots, Orlams (Hottentots from Cape Colony), Bastaards (Dutch Hottentot half-breeds from the Cape). XII. Cape Colony. (1) San (Bushmen); (2) Hottentots; (3) Basutos; (4) Kaffirs.

XIII. Southeast Africa. Bechuanas; many tribes, whose names begin with Ba-.

XIV. Zambezia, south and north. (1) Bechuana natives; (2) in North Zambezia the greatest confusion of natives.

XV. Portuguese East Africa. (1) Zulus; (2) Tonga tribes; (3) mixed tribes; (4) Banyans or Hindu traders in seaports.

XVI. German East Africa. Bantus, pressed on by Aralis, Zulus, Nilotic Negroes. Many tribes whose names begin with Ma- or Wa-.

XVII. British East Africa. Ethnic diversity, every race in Africa except Bushmen-Hottentots. (1) Bantus; (2) Marai; (3) Somali; (4) Gallas; (5) Bantu Gallas (Wa-Huma); (6) Negroes; (7) Negritos.

XVIII. Madagascar. Malayo-African mixed peoples, all speaking a Malayo-Polynesian language. (1) Hovas, in the centre; (2) Betsimisarakas, on the east; (3) Sakalavas, on the west.

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The Northern Africans are Hamitic, and were preceded (1) by Stone Age peoples; (2) by the kindred of Iberians, Silurians, and other tribes of Southern and Western Europe. The monolith builders apparently merged into the Berber Hamite intruders, who, in turn, were encroached upon by Phœnician Semites; then followed Romans and Teutonic Vandals, though the chief ethnic element cuntinued Berber until the coming of the Arabs (100-200 A.D.) and the irruption of the Moslems (from 639 A.D.). The Arabs are now in the ascendency, but Hamitic tribes continue in the uplands (Keane, 1895).

There are among the African peoples examples of the lightest and the darkest races. There are also examples of the smallest and the largest of mankind, as the measurements in metric standard from Deniker will show: Akka, 1.378 meters; Bushmen of Kalahari, 1.529; Mzabite Berber, 1,620; Batckes of the Congo, 1.641; Algerian Arabs, 1,656; Berbers of Tunis, 1.663; Abyssinians, 1.669; Danakils, 1.670: Kabyles, 1.677; Bechuanas, 1.684; Mandingo, 1.700; Kaffirs, 1.715; Somali, 1.723; Wolof, 1.730 (many are over six feet); Fulah, 1.741. Compare with these the Eta of the Philippines, 1.465; Eskimo, 1.575; Lapps, 1.529; Cheyennes, 1.745; Sikhs, 1.709; and Marquesas Islanders, 1.743. The range of cranial index is quite as wide. Among the Congo tribes the index is 72°.5; the Fijian Negroes have an index of 67°.2; the Sara of the Chad Basin have an index of 82°.4; but many peoples in Oceanica, America, Asia, and Europe range between this ratio and 88°.7.

Religions. Fifty-eight per cent. of the population, according to the estimate of H. P. Beach, are devotees of the native religions, which are characterized by these features: (1) Belief in some sort of a supreme God, who, in a vaguely conceived way, creates and rules all. (2) Worship of ancestors. It is not so elaborately worked out as in China, but still it underlies the West African scenes of dreadful slaughter of the slaves and wives of his predecessor, ordered when a chief succeeds to office, for by such bloodshed he pays respect to the deceased. (3) Fetishism, with the accompaniment of a priest or sorcerer. (4) Superstition of the grossest and most degrading kind. The heathen African is the slave of this low type of religion, and, in consequence, his life is full of terrors, as it is to the interest of the fetish doctors to work upon these fears. Idolatry is not found in central Africa at all, and nowhere is it so elaborated as in India. Imported Religions.—(1) Mohammedanism. Of the religions imported into the continent, by far the most important is Mohammedanism, the faith of 30 per cent. of the population. It came thither in the seventh century and overran all north Africa in a hundred years, so completely overturning the Christian churches which had been planted there that they have never been revived. Mohammedanism retains its conquests in Egypt, Barca, Tripoli, Algeria, and Morocco, and it is to-day one of the greatest missionary religions. It presents a one-sentence creed: “There is but one God and Mohammed is his prophet,” and has the simplest methods. The missionary is unpaid and usually a native. There are no mission boards, or expenses for salaries and printing. There is usually no special training, although in Cairo there is a Mohammedan university, attended by thousands of students, and from this many of the missionaries go forth. They have been remarkably successful in spreading their faith among heathen populations in Central Africa. In this way Mohammedanism has exerted an influence which counteracts the native religions, and so improves the condition of the peoples it reaches. (2) Christianity; (a) Copts, the descendants of those original Christians who, in the fifth century, adopted the theory that in Jesus the human and divine make one composite nature (monophysitism), and so are reckoned among Christian heretics. They are found in Egypt and number about three-quarters of a million. (b) Abyssinian Christians, who trace their faith back to the Coptic missionaries of the fourth century, but present a curious mixture of Christianity and Judaism. (c) Roman Catholics: The first missionaries of this faith to penetrate the Dark Continent were Jesuits, and they began work in the middle of the sixteenth century. Indeed, St. Francis Xavier came to Mozambique as early as 1541, but he did not stay more than six months. The result of the work, carried on continuously ever since, has been that now one and two-fifths per cent. of the population are Roman Catholics, living in all parts of the continent. Livingstone bore testimony to the value of the work of these missionaries. (d) Protestants: The first who came to Africa were Moravians. This was in 1792. Since then all branches of Protestantism have labored there, and their converts now number one and nine-tenths per cent. of the population, and they are found in every part. Roman Catholics and Protestants, especially the latter, carry on missionary work among the Coptic and Abyssinian Christians. South Africa is to a considerable extent a Christian country of the modern civilized type. (3) Judaism: About three-tenths of one per cent. of the population of Africa are Jews.

Social Conditions. Slavery is still “the open sore of Africa,” as Livingstone said, and nowhere is it more cruel, bloodthirsty, and destructive. The ivory trade is a constant source of trouble, setting tribe against tribe in war. Polygamy is widespread. The tribal government, the absence of central authority, the usual conditions of savage life, in bondage of superstition and terrors of every kind, these disturb life over great stretches of territory. Yet it is the testimony of travelers that peace and a certain kind of prosperity are found in many villages in the very heart of the land. Consult: F. P. Noble, The Redemption of Africa (New York, 1899, 2 volumes); A. P. Atterbury, Islam in Africa (New York, 1899); H. P. Beach, Geography of Protestant Missions (New York, 1901).

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Early History and Exploration. In the earliest historic times, when civilization centred around the Mediterranean, Libya, as Africa was known to the ancients, was one of the three great divisions of the earth, of which Europe and Asia were the other two. The details of its history are to be found in the history of Egypt, still the earliest recorded civilization, and of the other states of northern Africa, as well as of the Roman Empire, which absorbed them all. The brown-hued Berbers seem to have been the fundamental race stock throughout northern Africa, with perhaps Aryan and Semitic infusions, due to the contact of Egypt with Asia and Europe. Whether the Hamitic peoples of Africa were or were not autochthonous is a problem for the settlement of which no sufficient data exists. The knowledge possessed by the ancients of the continent as a whole, so far as we have accounts of it, can be briefly stated. The rulers of Egypt, as subsequently those of Carthage, attempted to extend their influence toward the south and west; but the physical and climatic conditions and the savage tribes encountered presented an effective bar to extended progress at that time. An inscription assigned to the period of the Eleventh (Theban) Dynasty tells of a voyage made by command of one of the rulers of that dynasty to the land of Punt, probably Somaliland. Recent discoveries also seem to increase the credibility of traditions which assigned the biblical lands of Ophir to the eastern coast of Africa. About thirty centuries ago the enterprising Phœnicians planted Utica (c.1100 B.C.), Carthage (826 B.C.), and other lesser colonies along the Mediterranean coast, and Greek colonies were founded in Egypt, in Cyrenaica, and just east of Carthage, during the period of Greek colonization, which began in the eighth century B.C.

The known explorations of the Dark Continent may be said to begin with the famous voyage made by Phœnicians about 600 B.C., an account of which is preserved by Herodotus (iv. 42). There are no sufficient reasons for doubting the general accuracy of the account, which describes the voyage as made by command of Necho, King of Egypt, who had just completed a canal from the Nile to the Red Sea. The expedition sailed down the Red Sea and along the coast of Africa, until the sun for many weeks “rose on their right hand.” After a long absence the explorers returned to Egypt through the Pillars of Hercules, so that they must have circumnavigated the continent. A hundred years later, also according to Herodotus (iv. 43), a Persian of noble birth, Sataspes, started, with a Carthaginian crew, down the west coast of Africa, but was compelled to turn back. It is doubtful if he went far beyond the Phœnician settlements, which, beginning at Gades, just without the Pillars of Hercules, already extended well down the coast of Morocco, along which Hanno, about 450 B.C., planted a series of colonies. The “Islands of the Blessed” also (the Madeira and Canary islands) were probably within the scope of the sea-going trade of the Phœnicians and Carthaginians. Carthaginian traders trafficked by sea with the Gold Coast, and by land along the caravan routes which communicated with the flourishing regions of Upper Egypt and the Niger. It is probable that almost contemporaneously with the Phœnician settlements in Northern Africa, Arabs entered the country south of the Zambezi, and, going inland, found and worked the gold mines which have been recently rediscovered. The Greeks began to colonize Northern Africa in the seventh century B.C. After the conquest and destruction of Carthage by Rome (146 B.C.), all Northern Africa was gradually drawn into the growing empire; but Rome's interest lay in the known and organized regions, upon which she strengthened the hold of civilization, ignoring all that lay beyond her well-defined boundaries, a policy which was accentuated as the empire tended toward decay.

Christianity was introduced into Africa in the earliest days, and the North African Church was a recognized division of the Christian Church in the second century, and when a synod of this Church was held in 258 it was attended by 87 bishops. Its chief city was Carthage. Three names in this Church are prominent: Tertullian (third century), the first to employ the Latin language in the service of Christianity; Cyprian (third century), Bishop of Carthage, and one of the great ecclesiastics of the early Church; and Augustine (fifth century), Bishop of Hippo, the greatest of the Latin fathers. The earliest translation of the Bible into Latin was made in North Africa, and it was the battle ground of the famous fights with heretics and schismatics, such as Donatists, Pelagians, and Montanists. But the Church was destined to have a short life. Undermined by formalism and apathy, it fell beneath the Mohammedan onslaught in the seventh century. During the Germanic invasions the Vandals grasped the African provinces, and in the early mediæval period much that had been known to Ptolemy and the geographers who preceded him was forgotten. The maps of Ptolemy, representing the knowledge of the second Christian century, indicate the course and sources of the Nile and the mountains of West Central Africa more accurately than they were again shown on maps before the middle of the nineteenth century. What Europe was forgetting, the Arabs, in the advance of the Mohammedan power, rediscovered. From Arabia the new faith spread rapidly westward along the southern shores of the Mediterranean and inland across the desert. It took such deep root in Northern Africa that the Christian religion, which in many places was then well established, has never been able to regain a real foothold among the native races.

Northern Africa became a battle ground during the later Crusades and all the succeeding struggles on the Mediterranean between Cross and Crescent, and was the scene of changes and strife among rival Mohammedan dynasties; but ignorance of the rest of the continent only deepened with the centuries, except among the Arabs, who occasionally pushed their expeditions southward. If traditions may be believed, Norman vessels from Dieppe visited the Gold Coast as early as 1364, and in 1413 the Normans built a fort at Elmina. There is neither inherent improbability in this story nor satisfactory evidence to prove it, but it is probable that, Norman voyagers found their way to the West African coast at a very early period. In 1402 Jean de Béthencourt sailed from La Rochelle and established a settlement on Lanzarote, one of the Canary Islands. During the next three years he extended his sway over the natives of the neighboring islands. Although his expedition is sometimes spoken of as the beginning of modern African discovery, the accounts of it show conclusively that the islands were already comparatively well known. Indeed, Béthencourt seems to have started with some sort of a grant from the King of Castile. Long before, in 1344, the Pope had granted the islands to a scion of the royal house of Castile, Don Luis de la Cerda, who had taken the title of Prince of Fortune, i.e., of the Fortunate Islands. This same year, 1344, is given as the date for the discovery of Madeira. In that year, so the tale goes, a young Englishman, Robert Machin, eloped with Anne d'Arfet, or Dorset, a woman of noble birth, and sailed away with her for France, but contrary winds carried them to the island of Madeira. There the lovers died; but one of the company returned to Portugal, and the report of his adventures served to guide the captains of Prince Henry, who rediscovered the island in 1419.

The real opening of Africa to the knowledge of the modern world began with Prince Henry of Portugal (q.v.), called the Navigator. In 1415 he participated in the victorious campaign of Portugal against the Moorish citadel of Ceuta and his interest was awakened by the enigma of the unknown continent. On his return he devoted himself to the task of sending expedition after expedition down the African coast to determine the extent of the continent, and to find, if possible, a way to the east around it. These expeditions crept further and further southward. In 1445 an exploring party started from the mouth of the Rio d'Ouro and spent seven months in the interior. Gil Eannes passed beyond Cape Bojador, the “bulging cape,” off which the Atlantic currents ran so strong as to bar all previous attempts at progress. In 1441 a vessel brought back some Moorish captives; a year later two of these captives were exchanged for ten negro slaves and some gold dust—and the demoralizing trade which was to characterize West Africa for nearly four centuries was fairly begun. The Bay of Arguin was reached in 1443, and the next year a syndicate, or company, the first of the many that have exploited the Slave Coast, was organized at Lagos. In 1445 Diniz Dias passed the mouth of the Senegal, discovered Cape Verde, and returned to Portugal with four negroes taken from their own country, previous importations having been secured by exchange with the Moors. The next year Nuño Tristão reached the Gambia, where he was killed, with most of his followers, by the natives. Ten years later, 1455 and 1456, Cada Mosto (q.v.) explored the river and discovered the Cape Verde Islands. The impulse given to exploration by Prince Henry continued after his death, which occurred in 1460. Pedro de Cintra, in 1462, added the coast as far as Sierra Leone and Cape Mesurado to the Portuguese claims. In 1471 Santarem and Escobar carried the Portuguese flag across the equator. Commerce, meanwhile, was familiarizing pilots and the makers of sailing charts with the details of the coast. The search for new centres of profitable trade went on, and in 1484 Diego Cam passed the Congo and heard from the natives tales which seemed to confirm the old story of Prester John (q.v.), a Christian king ruling somewhere beyond the wall of Mohammedanism with which Europe was surrounded. It has been supposed by some that the King of Abyssinia was the subject of this legend. The Portuguese king determined to communicate with this unknown Christian brother, and in July, 1487, sent Bartholomeu Dias (q.v.) with two ships of some fifty tons and a smaller tender to carry his message. From the Congo, Dias beat down to Cape Voltas, near the mouth of the Orange River. Thence he was driven by storm southward for thirteen days, after which he steered north and east in the hope of regaining land. He sighted the southern coast of Africa, near the Gouritz River, at Vleesch Bay. Keeping on toward the east, he landed on an island in Algoa Bay, still known as Santa Cruz, or St. Croix, from the cross which he set up there. When he reached the mouth of the Great Fish River, long the boundary of Cape Colony, the patience of his crews gave out and they forced him to put about for home. On the return journey he sighted, first of modern sailors, the great landmark which has appropriated the generic name of The Cape. Dias christened it the Stormy Cape (Cabo Tormentoso), but on his return in December, 1488, the King (or, according to Christopher Columbus, Dias himself) gave it the more cheering name of the Cape of Good Hope.

While Dias was rounding the Cape, the King, fearing lest his vessels might fail to reach Prester John, sent another message to that potentate, overland, by Pedro de Covilhão and Alfonso de Payva. From Aden, in Arabia, Payva made his way to Abyssinia, where he was killed, while Covilhão went eastward to India. From Goa Covilhão sailed to Sofala, in Eastern Africa, where he gathered news of Madagascar, and satisfied himself that it would be possible to go around to the western side of Africa by water. His report reached Portugal in 1490, but it was seven years before Vasco da Gama (q.v.) proved its correctness, in November, 1497. Starting from Lisbon, he doubled the Cape, and after encountering storm and tempest and the southern sweep of the Mozambique current, sighted, on Christmas Day, 1497, the land which still bears the name he gave it in honor of the day—Natal. After touching at Mozambique and Mombasa, he arrived on Easter at Melinda, where he found a pilot who took him across to India. The land was sighted on May 17, 1498, and three days later Da Gama anchored off Calicut.

Modern Exploration. Thus far the Portuguese had been almost alone in the exploration of Africa, but in the second half of the eighteenth century a new era of discovery began—an era in which men of several nationalities have had a share, and by the results of which several nations have sought to profit. The new line of explorers is headed by James Bruce (q.v.), a Scotchman who had been British consul at Algiers from 1763 to 1765. While in Egypt in 1768 he conceived the plan of seeking for the sources of the Nile. After crossing the Red Sea to Jiddah, he entered Abyssinia by the way of Massowah, and proceeded to Gondar, where he won the favor of the Negus. After some delay he succeeded in reaching the headwaters of the Blue Nile, and believed that he had found the true source of the main river. He arrived in Cairo in 1773. His account of his journey and the increasing interest in the slave traffic led to the organization, in 1788, of the African Association, expressly intended to promote the exploration of the unknown parts of the continent. In 1795 the association dispatched Mungo Park (q.v.), a young Scotchman, to the mouth of the Gambia, to explore the interior and to find the Niger, on which was supposed to be the negro city of Timbuktu. Passing up the Gambia, Park, after many adventures, reached the Niger, which he traced for a considerable distance along its middle course. He returned to England, but again set forth in 1805, intending to travel overland to the Niger, and by sailing down that stream prove his theory that it was identical with the river which was known at the mouth as the Congo. He was drowned at Bussa, with one of his companions, and all the other members of the party succumbed to fever.

Meanwhile, the Portuguese Brazilian F. J. de Lacerda in 1797 started from the Zambezi to cross the continent from east to west, but died near Lake Moero. Other Portuguese explorers traversed this region from both sides during the next thirty-five years. The stories that Park had heard and published about the mysterious city of Timbuktu aroused great curiosity. The city was reached in 1811 by a British seaman named Adams, who had been wrecked on the Moorish coast and carried inland as a slave, but was ransomed by the British consul at Mogador. In 1822 Major Denham and Lieutenant Clapperton (q.v.) attempted the trans-Saharan route to Timbuktu. From Murzuk, the capital of Fezzan, they made their way to Lake Chad and thence to Bornu, adding, in a second trip by Clapperton from Benin to the Niger, some two thousand miles of route to the known geography of West Africa. In 1826 Timbuktu was reached by Major Laing (q.v.), who was murdered there. In 1828 René Caillié reached the far-famed metropolis, and his report aroused widespread interest, one sign of which was the prize poem with which Tennyson began his public career. The doubtful geographical problem of the course and mouth of the Niger was finally solved, 1830-34, by the Lander brothers. At this time the exploration of the Nile was carried on under the auspices of Mehemet Ali, its course being traced almost to the equator. In 1847 the German missionaries Krapf and Rebmann discovered the peaks of Kilimanjaro and Kenia.

The middle of the nineteenth century marked the introduction of the distinctly scientific spirit into African exploration. Heretofore the thirst for adventure, the desire to develop a profitable trade, and a somewhat sentimental humanitarianism had been the chief motives of the expeditions. The era of systematic scientific exploration was ushered in by Dr. Heinrich Barth (q.v.), a German in the English service. The primary object of his activity was the opening of trade with Central Africa. He left Tripoli early in 1850 with James Richardson, who died soon after leaving Bornu, where the party had separated. Overweg, another of the leaders, was the first European to sail on Lake Chad, and died in 1852. Barth, for four years, conducted extensive explorations in the heart of Africa. From Lake Chad he crossed Haussaland to the Niger, thence across country to Timbuktu, thence back to Say on the Niger, to Sokoto, to Kukawa in Bornu, and across the desert to Tripoli, whence he returned to England with the most valuable contribution yet made to the geographical knowledge of interior Africa. His voluminous works are of the highest value. Before Barth started from the north, another of the greatest of African explorers, David Livingstone (q.v.), had unostentatiously begun his remarkable career. He had settled in 1841 in Bechuanaland, and, gradually pushing northward, discovered Lake Ngami in 1849. In 1851 he arrived at the Zambezi. He prepared himself thoroughly for more extended work, and went to the Zambezi again in 1852, followed up the river almost to its source, crossed to Angola, and then returned and followed the Zambezi to its mouth. He went to London in 1856. Burton (q.v.) and Speke (q.v.) explored Somaliland in 1854, and in 1856 led an expedition under the auspices of the Royal Geographical Society, which discovered Tanganyika and the southern shore of Victoria Nyanza, which Speke and Grant explored from 1860 to 1864. Numerous Austrian, Italian, German, and English explorers had been working in the Nile region. Sir Samuel Baker explored the Abyssinian branches of the Nile, met Speke and Grant in 1864, and discovered the Albert Nyanza and its connection with the Nile. Livingstone, between 1858 and 1864, explored the River Shire and discovered Lake Nyassa. He renewed his work in 1866, going from the Ruvuma River to Nyassa, Tanganyika, Moero, the Luapula River, and Bangweolo, where he arrived in 1868. Thence he went to Tanganyika and Nyangwe on the Upper Congo, which he called the Lualaba. At Ujiji a relief expedition sent by the New York Herald under H. M. Stanley (q.v.) met him in 1871. Livingstone soon returned to Lake Bangweolo, where he died in 1873. Another relief expedition sent out by the Royal Geographical Society in 1873 under Lieutenant Cameron, starting at Zanzibar, learned of Livingstone's death, but went on, mapped Lake Tanganyika, found that the Lualaba was really the Congo, and reached Benguela in 1875, having crossed the continent.

While the solution of the problem of the sources of the Nile was being achieved, important accessions were made to the knowledge of the geography of Western Africa. Du Chaillu explored the country back of the Gabun and the region of the Ogowe, and Burton in 1861 scaled the Peak of Kanierun.

Dr. Gerhard Rohlfs (q.v.), a German serving in the foreign legion in Algeria, began to make explorations in Algeria and Morocco about 1860, and in 1866 succeeded in making the journey across the desert to the Gulf of Guinea. Another German, Dr. Nachtigal (q.v.), intrusted by the Prussian Government with a mission to the Sultan of Bornu, started from Tripoli in 1868, explored the mountains in the central Sahara, and the whole of the eastern Sahara and Sudan. In 1875 Stanley circumnavigated the two great lakes, Victoria Nyanza and Tanganyika, crossed to the Congo, embarked upon that river at Nyangwe, in 1876, and followed its course to the Atlantic, which he reached in August, 1877. Schweinfurth (q.v.), a native of Riga, ascended the White Nile in 1868, discovered the Welle River, and returned to Egypt in 1872, having accumulated a large amount of information. Leopold II., King of the Belgians, took an active interest in the work going on in Africa, and in 1876 organized the International African Association, in which most of the European countries were associated. Several geographical and scientific expeditions were the product of this organization, and stations were opened from Zanzibar to Tanganyika. In 1879 Stanley was sent into the Congo country, supported by funds furnished chiefly by Leopold, and worked for five years in that region in the name of the association. Several thousand treaties were made with native chiefs, by which territorial rights of more or less value were acquired, and permanent posts, with regular routes of trade and travel, were established along the course of the river. The purpose was to found a State which should be a civilizing centre, in the heart of Africa. For a time there was some international interest in the project; but for several years those European powers which had been active in African exploration had been looking forward to possible political results, and the institution of such a State, with a territory comprising about one-eleventh of the whole continent, seems to have been the signal for the rise of territorial claims on all sides. Interest in the international enterprise died out, and the King of the Belgians was left free to develop the Congo State into a Belgian dependency. The English hoped to make it an English possession, and the attempt of Great Britain to come to an agreement with Portugal, whose territory in the southwest touched that of the Congo State, led to the assembling in 1884 of the Berlin Conference, called to bring about an international agreement in African affairs. The results of this conference are described in a subsequent paragraph.

Of the long list of African explorers up to this time only those have been mentioned whose work marked a distinct advance in the knowledge of the continent. There may be added to the number, prior to 1885, the Portuguese Serpa Pinto (1877-79), and Capello and Ivens (1884-85), who made valuable explorations in South Africa; Junker (1880-83), a traveler, whose examination of the western watershed of the Nile was of great value; Joseph Thomson (1883-84), who made thorough studies of the mountainous country between Mombasa and the lakes, and likewise in West Africa and the Atlas Mountains; Wissmann (1881-82), who crossed the continent and returned through the southern side of the Congo basin; Oscar Lenz, who, in 1879-87, went from Morocco to Senegambia by the way of Timbuktu, ascended the Congo, and traveled to the Zambezi by the way of Tanganyika; Brazza, who explored the country between the Ogowe and Congo; and Emil Holub, who added greatly to the knowledge of the natural history of South Africa.

Much has been done in the way of exploration since 1885, the object generally being to perfect geographical and scientific knowledge of the different regions. Of such expeditions, the best known and one of the most noteworthy was Stanley's mission, undertaken in 1887, in search of Gordon's lieutenant, the German Schnitzer, better known as Emin Pasha, who had retreated into the interior after the fall of Khartum. Stanley went up the Congo and crossed to Zanzibar. On the journey he traversed the dense and vast forest inhabited by diminutive savages, and thus confirmed ancient accounts of African Pygmies. The predominance of the British in Egypt and in South Africa, and the fact that the territory under British influence stretches with but one break (German East Africa) from the month of the Nile to Cape Town, has given rise to the project of a trunk line railway “from the Cape to Cairo,” a project which is likely to be carried out at no distant day, with far-reaching consequences in the development of the continent. This plan led to the crossing of the continent from south to north by Ewart S. Grogan and Arthur Sharp in 1899. Their journey was an adventurous and dangerous one, but the change in African conditions at the end of the nineteenth century is indicated by the fact that there was a choice of routes in buying first-class railway tickets from the Cape to Karonga at the head of Lake Nyassa, and the journey from Sobat, a considerable distance south of Kashoda, is described as “a fortnight of wild hospitality” at the hands of English friends. This journey was productive of much valuable information regarding the country which the transcontinental line is expected to traverse in the volcanic region around Lake Kivu and on the eastern shores of Lake Albert Edward and the Upper Nile. A host of scientific investigators and explorers have in the last twenty years done useful work in various African fields. Among such, special reference should be made to Donaldson Smith in connection with explorations in Somaliland. The two most notable expeditions of recent years have been those of Marchand (the “Marchand Mission to Fashoda”) and Foureau, the latter, in his trans-Saharan journey to the Congo, making an epoch in African exploration. One of the most extraordinary among African explorers for his success as traveler, organizer, administrator, and historian of Africa is Sir Harry H. Johnston.

The Partition of Africa. The Berlin Conference is important in the history of Africa as marking the transition from a period of explorations undertaken in a spirit of scientific curiosity or gain to a period in which the play of international politics is the most prominent feature. The crucial question before the conference was that of the Congo Free State (q.v.) and its relations with neighboring territories. Ultimately it was recognized as an independent, neutral State, under the personal sovereignty of the King of Belgium. The title of France to the territory of the French Congo and the Upper Ubanghi was acknowledged, with a right of preëmption in case of the transfer of the Congo State from Belgium to another power. The conference also determined the spheres of the several interested powers in Africa, so that the numerous boundary treaties and agreements that have been arranged since 1885 have virtually been executory provisions added to the Berlin convention. Three such treaties were concluded by Great Britain in 1890. The Anglo-German agreement, signed at Berlin July 1, gave Germany the island of Heligoland in the North Sea in return for certain concessions which harmonized the relations of the two powers in Eastern Africa; the Anglo-French agreement, signed at London, August 5, recognized an English protectorate over Zanzibar and Pemba and a French protectorate over Madagascar, and determined the French sphere of influence as extending from Algeria southward to a line from Say on the Niger to Lake Chad; the Anglo-Portuguese agreement, August 20 and November 14, established the respective territorial rights of Portugal and the British South Africa Company. Subsequent agreements between England, France, and Germany (1899) defined their respective territories and protectorates in West Africa. The question of the control of the Nile region and of South Africa gave rise to numerous attempts to secure adjustments in that quarter, and agreements to which Abyssinia, Egypt, France, Germany, Great Britain, and Italy were parties were made in 1891, 1893, 1894, 1895, 1896, 1897, and 1899. In 1900 the demarkation of British and German boundaries in West Africa was completed. By this process of absorption by agreement, the whole African continent has come into actual possession or political control of European States, with the exception of Morocco, Abyssinia, and Liberia. The Orange Free State and the Transvaal lost their independent existence in the war with Groat Britain (1899-1902).

The partition of the African continent may be summarized as follows: In the northeast, Egypt, nominally under Turkish suzerainty, is really under British control, while Egypt and Great Britain exercise a condominium over the eastern Sudan. Barca and Tripoli remain subject to the Porte. Tunis and Algeria pertain to France, whose influence reaches down across the Sahara and Sudan to the northern slope of the Congo basin. On the west coast below Jlorocco is the small Rio d'Ouro possession of Spain. Then come the French Senegal, British Gambia, Portuguese Guinea, French Guinea, the British Sierra Leone, Liberia, another block of French territory, the British Ashanti, German Togoland, French Dahomey, the extensive British Niger territories, and German Kamerun. Off the coast of Kamerun lies the Spanish island of Fernando Po, to which are attached some other small islands and a small district on the mainland cut out of the French Congo territory. Below the latter lies the Congo Free State, with but a small coast line, the wedge of the small Portuguese territory of Kabinda pushed in between it and the French Congo. South of the Congo lies the large Portuguese territory of Angola, then German South Africa, and then Cape Colony, one of the British self-governing possessions. North of the latter on the east coast is the British colony of Natal, and north of that Portuguese East Africa. Between the two latter and German West Africa and Angola, the territories of British South Africa and British Central Africa in the interior extend northward to the Congo State and to German East Africa, which occupies the east coast north of Lake Nyassa and the Ruvuma River. The Orange River and Vaal River colonies adjoin Natal and British South Africa. North of German East Africa lies British East Africa, which touches on the north the British sphere of influence in the Sudan, Abyssinia, and on the coast, Italian Somaliland. West of the latter on the Gulf of Aden is the British Somali coast protectorate, then French Somaliland, and then the Italian Eritrea, the four territories last named shutting Abyssinia off from the coast. The area and population of the African territories possessed or controlled by the European powers are approximately as follows:

Country. Square miles.  Population.
France 4,000,000[1]  32,635,010[1]
Great Britain  2,700,000[2]  41,773,360   
Germany 1,000,000    14,200,000   
Portugal 800,000    8,197,790   
Italy 200,000    450,000   
Spain 80,000    400,000   
Turkey 400,000    1,300,000   

For fuller accounts of the important phases of exploration and political division, see biographical articles relating to the leading explorers, and the historical sections of articles on Abyssinia; Cape of Good Hope; Congo Free State; Egypt; Madagascar; Orange River Colony, and Transvaal.

Bibliography. For general works, consult: Keane, “Africa,” in Stanford's Compendium of Geography and Travel (London, 1895), a general treatise on the geography, ethnology, etc., of the African continent; Sievers-Hahn, Afrika, eine allgemeine Landeskunde (Leipzig, 1901); Reelus, Physical Geography, translated by Keane and Ravenstein (London, 1890-95); Lanier, L'Afrique (Paris, 1895); Chavanne, Afrika im Lichte unserer Tage (Vienna, 1881); id., Afrikas Ströme und Flüsse (Vienna, 1883); Fischer, Mehr Licht im dunkeln Weltteil (Hamburg, 1885); Hartmann and others, Der Weltteil Afrika in Einzeldarstellungen (Leipzig, 1883-85); Johnston, Africa (London, 1884); Ratzel, Völkerkunde, Volume I. (Leipzig, 1885); Junker, “Wissenschaftliche Ergebnisse von Reisen in Zentral Afrika,” in Petermann's Mitteilungen, Ergänzungsheft, Volume XX. (Gotha, 1888); White, The Development of Africa (London, 1892); Greswell, Geography of Africa South of the Zambesi (Oxford, 1892), with notes on the industries, wealth, and social progress of the states and people.

For history and colonization, consult: Neumann, Nord Afrika nach Herodot (Leipzig, 1892); Schülten, Das römische Afrika (Leipzig, 1899); Graham, Roman Africa (London, 1902); Kunstmann, Afrika vor der Ankunft der Portugiesen (Munich, 1853); Brown, The Story of Africa and Its Explorers (London, 1892-95); Roskoschny, Europas Kolonien, Volumes I.-IV. (Leipzig, 1885-86); Keltie, The Partition of Africa (London, 1895); Deville, Portage de l'Afrique (Paris, 1898); Johnston, History of the Colonization of Africa by Alien Races (Cambridge, 1899); Peters, Das deutsch-ostafrikanische Schutzgebiet (Munich, 1895); “British Africa,” in British Empire Series (London, 1899), a collection of papers by different authors compiled to afford trustworthy information concerning the British colonies in Africa.

Ethnology and archæology: Keane, Ethnology (Cambridge, 1896); Deniker, Races of Man (London, 1900); Edwards, A Thousand Miles up the Nile (London, 1891); Hartmann, Die Völker Afrikas (Leipzig, 1879); Natives of South Africa, Their Economic and Social Condition, edited by South African Native Races Committee (London, 1901).

On the flora of Africa, consult: Engler, Ueber die Hochgebirgs-Flora des tropischen Afrikas (Berlin, 1892); Sim, The Ferns of South Africa (Cape Town, 1892); Catalogue of African Plant Collected by Friedrich Welwitsch in 1853-61 (London, 1896-1901); Steiner, “Flechten aus British Ost-Afrika,” in Kais. Akad. d. Wissenschaften. Sitzungsbericht der mathematisch-naturwissenschaftlichen Klasse, Volume CVI., pt. 1 (Vienna, 1897); Oschatz, Anordnung der Vegetation in Afrika (Erlangen, 1900). On the fauna, consult: Smith, Illustrations of the Zoölogy of South Africa, 5 volumes (London, 1849), which includes mammals, birds, reptiles, fishes, and invertebrates; Drummond, Large Game and Natural History of South and East Africa (Edinburgh, 1875); Kolbe, Beitrag zur Zoogeographie West Afrikas (Halle, 1887); Trimen, South African Butterflies, 3 volumes (London, 1887-89); Distant, A Naturalist in the Transvaal (London, 1892); Kingsley, Travels in West Africa (London, 1897), which contains Dr. Gunther's report on reptiles and fishes and Kirby's report on the Orthoptera, Hymenoptera, and Hemiptera collected by Miss Kingsley; Sturnay, “Katalog der bisher bekannt gewordenen süd-afrikanischen Land- und Süsswasser-Mollusken,” in Kais. Akad. der Wissenschaften. Mathematisch-naturwissenschaftliche Denkschrifen, Volume LXVII. (Vienna, 1899). Valuable works on the African climate are: Hann, Handbuch der Klimatologie (Stuttgart, 1897); id., “Atlas der Meteorologie,” in Berghaus, Physikalischer Atlas (Gotha, 1888); Ravenstein, “The Climatology of Africa,” in Reports of the British Association for the Advancement of Science for 1897 and 1899 (London, 1898, 1900); Bartholomew, Physical Atlas, volume on “Meteorology” (London, 1901). The volumes of the Zeitschrift der oesterreichischen Gesellschaft für Meteorologie (Vienna, 1866-85) and of the Meteorologische Zeitschrift (Berlin, 1884 et seq.) contain many reports of meteorological observations made at places in all parts of Africa.

On geology, consult: Neumayr, Erdgeschichte (Leipzig, 1885-87); Suess, Das Antlitz der Erde (Leipzig, 1888-1901); Chavanne, Afrika im Lichte unserer Tage: Bodengestalt und geologischer Bau (Vienna, 1881); Thomson, “Notes on the Geology of East Central Africa,” in To the Central African Lakes (London, 1881); Lenz, “Geologische Karte von West Afrika,” in Petermann's Mitteilungen, Tafel 1. (Gotha, 1882); Moulle, Memoire sur la géologie générale et sur les mines de diamants de l'Afrique du Sud (Paris, 1885); Schenck, “Geologische Skizze von Süd Afrika,” in Petermann's Mitteilungen. Tafel 13 (Gotha, 1888); Blanckenhorn, “Die geognostischen Verhältnisse von Afrika,” in Petermann's Mitteilungen. Ergänzungsheft, Volume XX. (Gotha, 1888); Höhnel, Rosiwal, Toula, and Suess, Beiträge zur geologischen Kenntnis des östlichen Afrika (Vienna, 1891); Scott and Gregory, “The Geology of Mount Ruwenzori and Some Adjoining Regions of Equatorial Africa,” in Quarterly Journal of the Geological Society, Volume LI. (London, 1895); Moolengraff, “Die Reihenfolge und Correlation der geologischen Formationen in Süd Afrika,” in Neues Jahrbuch für Mineralogie (Stuttgart, 1900); Geological Map of North Africa (Zürich, 1896).

Among the numerous books dealing with African travel and exploration, may be mentioned: Burton, First Footsteps in East Africa (London, 1856); Livingstone, Missionary Travels and Researches in South Africa (New York, 1858); id., Narrative of an Expedition to the Zambesi and its Tributaries, and the Discovery of the Lakes Shirwa and Nyassa, 1858-64 (London, 1865); id., The Last Journals of David Livingstone in Central Africa, edited by Waller (London, 1874); Rohlfs, Quer durch Afrika (Leipzig, 1874-75), a journey from the Mediterranean Sea to Lake Chad and to the Gulf of Guinea; Cameron, Across Africa (New York, 1877), a journal of a journey from Zanzibar to Benguela, and a valuable record of the habits of the natives; Stanley, Through the Dark Continent (New York, 1878); Holub, Seven Years in South Africa, translated by Frewer (London, 1881); Pinto, How I Crossed Africa, translated by Elwes (Philadelphia, 1881); Drummond, Tropical Africa (New York, 1888); Junker, Reisen in Afrika (Vienna, 1889-91), translated by Keane (London, 1890-92); Stanley, In Darkest Africa (New York, 1890), an account of the quest, rescue and retreat of Emin Pasha; Casati, Ten Years in Equatoria, translated by Clay and Landor (London, 1891); Peters, New Light on Dark Africa, translated by Dulchen (London, 1891), the narrative of the German Emin Pasha expedition; Johnston, Livingstone and the Exploration of Central Africa (London, 1891); Bryce, Impressions of South Africa (New York, 1897); Loyd, In Dwarf Land and Cannibal Country (London, 1899).

  1. 1.0 1.1 Including Madagascar (q.v.).
  2. Inclusive of Egypt and the Sudan.