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a cheerful disposition, and had treated us hospitably the preceding evening. He even accompanied me to a considerable distance, till we left, on our right, the town of Sifáwa or Shifáwa, an important place in the history of the Púllo reformer 'Othmán dan Fódiye, but at present almost desolate and reduced to great misery, presenting a fair specimen of the state of the province of Gando, which we here entered.
The country here, as well as near Bodínga, is almost exclusively adorned with monkey-bread-trees, and the soil seemed to be very parched; but a little farther on we descended into a depression which, having been already fertilized by the rain, was just being sown. Farther on, the ground continuing undulating, we watered our horses at a rich source of living water which rushed out from the rocks at the side of a small hamlet. We then passed a large and comfortable-looking place called Dendi (perhaps after a portion of that tribe, which settled here), and adorned with a profusion of trees, among which the dorówa or Parkia, the góreba or dúm palm, and the gigíña or deléb palm were most conspicuous. Toward the southeast side it was bordered by a depression full of yams and fresh herbage, and fringed by numbers of monkeybread-trees. Even a little market-place was to be seen; and the place seemed so attractive to my people that they would fain have spent here the rest of the day, and they were not at all pleased when I insisted on continuing our march. A little after noon we passed a pretty village with a small dyeing-place. Besides cornfields, where the crops were already two inches out of the ground, indigo was cultivated to a great extent. We then entered upon rocky ground, and, five miles farther on, reached the place Shagáli, separated into two groups along the northern slope of an eminence, and surrounded on three sides by a deep and wide ravine, which made the access to it very difficult. Here we were rather inhospitably received, the former mayor having been deposed, and a new one not yet installed in his place.
Monday, May 16th. Early in the morning we pursued our journey, through a rather hilly country braken by several small water-courses, full of cultivated ground and fine timber, principally monkey-bread-trees, which now exhibited a more cheerful appearance, as they were clad in fresh foliage. We passed several vil. lages, where we again observed some signs of industry in the shape of dyeing, and, about six miles and a half from Shagáli, left the considerable place Señína (the same town which a few days before had been attacked by the enemy) on our left, situated on a small hilly chain. Here we entered a tract of country at present desolate, and thickly covered with underwood, and greatly infested by the independent inhabitants of Kebbi; but it was only of small extent, and, about four miles beyond Señína, we entered, by a steep rocky descent, the fine valley of Sála, which is intersected by a considerable sheet of water.
We took up our quarters in the walled town of Sála, the dwellings of which were almost lost in the most splendid vegetation, among which one of the finest tamarind-trees I have ever seen was greatly distinguished, attracting to its dense foliage countless flights of birds, which were gathering from all sides to pass the night here in cheerful communion. The wider-spreading foliage of the tamarind and monkey-bread trees was very picturesquely diversified by a large number of gónda-trees, or Carica Papaya, while in front of the principal gate a most splendid rími or bentang-tree was starting forth as a proud landmark, pointing out to the travel. er the site of the gate. The camels, who suffered greatly from thirst, immediately on our arrival were sent off to the brook of living water, which is formed at the foot of the rocky cliff a little to the north of the place where we had descended from the higher ground.
Tuesday, May 17th. We reached Gando, the residence of another powerful Púllo prince (as powerful as that of Sókoto), after a march of six hours, through a country richly provided by nature, and partly, at least, well inhabited. Hill and dale alternated, the depressions and cavities offering suitable grounds for the cultivation of yams. The vegetable kingdom also displayed its larger members in great variety. In the village Babanídi, which we passed about two miles from Sála, we observed the three species of palms which are common to Negroland in the same locality, viz., the dúm, the date, and the deléb palm, while, near a swampy sheet of water before we came to Masáma, I caught sight of the first banána or áyaba-tree that I had seen since I had left A'damáwa, with the exception of those young offshoots which I had observed in Bamúrna. Near this latter place, which was situated at the border of a deep valley, a large swamp spread out covered with rank reed-grass; and beyond the town of Masáma we had to cross another large and irregular valley or fäddama, where, even at this season of the year, a large sheet of water was formed, which, according to the statement of the natives, was full of alligators.
The towns also exhibited a considerable degree of industry in their dyeing places; and a short distance from our halting-place
we even passed large hollows about two fathoms in depth, and one in particular where iron had been dug out. Small marketing stalls in some places lined the road, and the town of Masáma, with its straggling suburbs, presented an animated spectacle ; but cattle were greatly wanting, nothing but sheep being seen, as all the horned cattle had been carried away by the predatory bands of Argúngo.
As we approached the town of Gando, I could not help won. dering how the people had been led to choose this locality as the seat of a large empire, commanded as it was by hilly chains all
around, in the manner shown in the accompanying wood-cut, while the rising ground would have offered a far more suitable locality. But the situation of the town is on a par with the character of its dominion—without commanding strength, and quite incapable of keeping together that large agglomeration of provinces
which have gathered around it. However, for a provincial town, the interior is very pleasant and animated, being adorned with a variety of trees, among which the banana is prominent.
Having sent a messenger in advance, I soon obtained quarters in the house of El Khassa, the chief eunuch of the court; but they were extremely narrow and unpleasant, although I had a very good clay house for myself.
Thus I had entered the residence of another very important Púllo chief, whose dominion extended several hundred miles over the country which I had to traverse, and whose friendship it was of the utmost importance for me to secure, as his provinces inclose both banks of the Niger, while the dominion of the Sultan of Sókoto does not reach the principal branch at all. It was the more unfavorable that the present ruler of this very extensive kingdom should be a man without energy, and most inaccessible to a European and a Christian. His name is Khalílu, and he is the son of 'Abd Allahi,* the brother of the great Reformer 'Othmán, to whom
* 'Abd Alláhi died 20th of Moharrem, 1245; and Mohammed died 4th of Ramadhán, 1250. The children of 'Abd Alláhi were the following: Mohammed Wáni, Khalilu, 'Abd el Kádiri Inneháwa, Halíru or Hadhíru and 'Aliyu (masuyaki), * 'Abd el Kádiri Ay, Hassan, 'Abd e' Rahmáni, Abu Bakr Maiguña, Is-háko, Mamman Sambo (maiyáki).*
• Maiyáki (pl. masuyúki) means commander-iu-chief.
that remarkable man, at his death, gave the western part of his vast domains, while he installed the celebrated Sultan Bello over the eastern portion. Khalílu succeeded to his brother Mohammed Wáni about seventeen years ago, and has since lived in a state of the greatest seclusion, well fitted for a monk, but by no means suited to the ruler of a vast empire, employing one of his brothers in order to keep up a certain show of imperial dignity where it was absolutely necessary. Thus, during the first few years of his reign, he had employed 'Abd el Kádiri, and was now employing Halíru, or, as the name is written, Hadhíru. Even by Mohammedans he is scarcely ever to be seen except on Fridays. It appeared, from my first arrival, extremely doubtful whether he would allow me to see his holy face; and after a vain struggle, merely in order that, by an untimely obstinacy in matters of form, I might not frustrate all my schemes of discovery, I agreed at length to deliver my present to the messengers of the sultan, in his palace, without seeing him. This present consisted of almost the same number of articles as I had given to the emír of Sokoto, with the exception of the silver-mounted pistols. I gave him three ber. núses, one of yellow, one of red cloth, and the third of the kind called heláli; a háík or jeríd of the finest quality, a Stambúli carpet, two entire pieces of muslin, a red cap, four loaves of sugar, three phials of rose oil, a pair of razors, five looking-glasses, a pound of cloves, and another of benzoin.
It was very unfortunate that a foreigner and an adventurer, who had no other interest than his own selfishness, became the gobetween with me and the sultan, and found ample opportunities, oaving to the monkish character of the latter, for advancing his own interests, in the thousand embarrassments which he caused me. This was El Bakáy, a person who made me hate his very name, though it afterward became so dear to me on account of my protector in Timbúktu being called by the same. However, he also was an Arab from the west, and from the tribe of the Kunta, but not connected in any way with the family of the sheikh. After having tried his fortune in several other places along the Niger, especially in Zagha and Yélu, he had at length settled down here, constituting himself a sort of consul of the Arabs, and, in the miserable state into which affairs were plunged in this court, soon exercising a great influence over the principal and the secondary rulers; for, besides Khalílu, his several brothers enjoyed a large share of authority, to all of whom I had, in con
sequence, to make suitable presents besides. The most remark.' able among them were the above-mentioned Halíru and Bú-Bakr Maiguña, the latter an aspiring and restless man, who occasionally distinguished himself by acts of great violence, and to whom, in consequence, I had to make a more respectable present, in order to insure myself against any predatory proceedings on his part.
My present to the sultan himself seemed at first to have given great satisfaction; but after a few days, matters assumed a different aspect, and I was told that the pistols which I had given to 'Aliyu were of more value than the whole of the presents which Khalílu had received from me, while the empire of the latter extended over a larger tract of country than that of the former; and I was clearly given to understand that it was not in my power either to proceed or even to retrace my steps, unless I gave much larger presents. After a protracted and serious dispute with El Bakáy and my broker 'Alí el A'geren, I came at length to the determination of sacrificing the second handsome pair of silvermounted pistols which I possessed, and then at length I had some prospect of being allowed to proceed on my journey, although the state of the country before me was really such as to make progress appear very difficult, and it was certainly very doubtful whether I should be able to reach the river. After much trouble and a great number of presents, however, which I had to give to the crafty Arab, I managed even to obtain a letter of franchise from Khalílu written with his own hand, but in so general a style that it had not much the character externally of an official document, although its contents were altogether very satisfactory, guaranteeing full security to any Englishmen visiting his territories, and commanding the officers of the various provinces to respect their property and to facilitate their proceedings.
Besides the presents to be given to all these people, I had also to make a fresh sacrifice to my Arab 'Alí el A'geren; for, notwithstanding the arrangement which I had previously made with him, when he saw the difficulties I was in, and being aware that the easy part of my journey was now over, he threatened to leave me if I did not accept the conditions which he prescribed to me. I had also the misfortune to lose, during my stay here, my best camel, which I had bought from the governor of Kátsena for 60,000 shells; so that I was obliged to purchase another animal from Bú Bakr Maiguña at the price he demanded, camels here being very scarce.