A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 06 eBook

Robert Kerr (writer)
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 750 pages of information about A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 06.
standing behind a door, wounded Annaya in the neck with his cymeter as he entered, but was soon killed with many of his attendants.  Next day the two sons of the slain king made a new assault on the fort, but without success, many of the garrison who were sick, being cured by the alarm, joined in the defence, and the Moors were again repulsed with great slaughter.  The two sons of the deceased King of Sofala fell out about the succession, and one of them named Solyman made an alliance with Annaya to procure his aid to establish himself in the sovereignty.

[Footnote 87:  In the translation of De Faria by Stephens these are called Moors; but it is not easy to conceive how Annaya should have had any of these on his side.—­E.]

The kingdom of Sofala, now called Sena by the Portuguese who monopolize its whole trade, is of great extent, being 750 leagues in circumference; but the inland parts are all subject to the Monomotapa, who is emperor of this southern part of Africa, his dominions being likewise known by the same name of Monomotapa, called by the ancients Ethiopia Inferior.  This country is watered by two famous rivers, called Rio del Espiritu Santo and Cuama, the latter of which is navigable 250 leagues above its mouth.  These and many other rivers which fall into them, are famous for their rich golden sands.  Most part of this country enjoys a temperate climate, being pleasant, healthy, and fertile.  Some parts are covered with large flocks of sheep, with the skins of which the natives are clothed to defend them from the cold south winds.  The banks of the Cuama river are covered with wood, and the interior country rises into hills and mountains, being abundantly watered with many rivers, so that it is delightful and well peopled, being the ordinary residence of the Monomotapa or emperor.  Its woods contain many elephants, and consequently produces much ivory.  About 50 leagues southwest from Sofala are the gold mines of Manica, in a valley of 30 leagues circumference, surrounded by mountains on the tops of which the air is always clear and serene.  There are other gold mines 150 leagues farther inland, but which are not so much valued.

In the interior of the country there are some buildings of wonderful structure, having inscriptions in unknown characters; but the natives know nothing respecting their origin.  The natives of Monomotapa believe in one God, whom they name Mazimo, and have no idols.  Witchcraft, theft, and adultery are the crimes most severely punished among them.  Every man is permitted to have as many wives as he pleases or can maintain.  The monomotapa has a thousand, but the first wife commands over all the rest, and her children only are entitled to inherit the throne.  Their houses are built of wood; their apparel is made of cotton, those of the better sort being mixed with gold threads; their funerals are very superstitious.  The attendance on the monomotapa is more ceremonious than grand, his usual guard being

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A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 06 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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