First Footsteps in East Africa, Or, An Exploration of Harar, Volume 2

Front Cover

What people are saying - Write a review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - amerynth - LibraryThing

Chock full of ethnographical information about the Muslims of Somalia, Richard Burton's "First Footsteps in Africa" is a great look at a white man's first forays into that area of the continent. As an ... Read full review



Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

Popular passages

Page 70 - Kotias,1 and with a formidable row of empty ghee jars slung over the quarters of their vessels, elbowed themselves into a permanent position in the front tier of craft in the harbour, and by their superior capital, cunning, and influence, soon distanced all competitors.
Page 100 - ... persuade them to advance. The loss of blood causing me to feel faint, I was obliged to lie down, and as dawn approached, the craft from Aynterad was seen apparently making sail out of the harbour. With my little remaining strength I reached the spit at the head of the creek, was carried into the vessel, and persuaded the crew to arm themselves and repair to the scene of our disaster.
Page 55 - Care behind us — for twenty-four hours we did not taste water, the sun parched our brains, the mirage mocked us at every turn, and the effect was a species of monomania. As I jogged along with eyes closed against the fiery air, no image unconnected with the want suggested itself. Water ever lay before me, water lying deep in the shady well, water in streams bubbling icy from the rock, water in pellucid lakes inviting me to plunge and revel in their treasures. Now an Indian cloud was showering upon...
Page 14 - ... souls is a distinct race. The Somal say of the city that it is a Paradise inhabited by asses : certainly the exterior of the people is highly unprepossessing. Amongst the men, I did not see a handsome face : their features are coarse and debauched ; many of them squint, others have lost an eye by small-pox, and they are disfigured by scrofula and other diseases : the bad expression of their countenances justifies the proverb, " Hard as the heart of Harar." Generally the complexion is a yellowish...
Page 11 - The material of the houses and defences is rough stones, the granites and sandstones of the hills, cemented, like the ancient Galla cities, with clay. The only large building is the Jami or Cathedral, a long barn of poverty-stricken appearance, with brokendown gates, and two white-washed minarets of truncated conoid shape. They were built...
Page 275 - A PERSONAL NARRATIVE OF A PILGRIMAGE TO ALMADINAH AND MECCAH." Memorial Edition. Complete: carefully revised from the Author's own Copy, and containing all the original coloured Illustrations, and Maps, and Plans, and also the Wood-cuts from the later Editions. In 2 vols. Price TWELVE SHILLINGS, net. OPINIONS OF THE PRESS. "The brilliant narrative reads as vividly as ever....We are glad to see his books revived in a form worthy of their intrinsic merit."— Athen&um.
Page 12 - Gambisa," the thatched cottages of the hill-cultivators. The city abounds in mosques, plain buildings without minarets, and in graveyards stuffed with tombs, — oblong troughs formed by long slabs planted edgeways in the ground. I need scarcely say that Harar is proud of her learning, sanctity, and holy dead. The principal saint buried in the city is Shaykh Umar Abadir El Bakri, originally from Jeddah, and now the patron of Harar : he lies under a little dome in the southern quarter of the city,...
Page 39 - Monday, and promised at all events to meet us at Wilensi. I fear that the Shaykh's counsel was on this occasion likely to be disregarded. We had been absent from our goods and chattels a whole fortnight : the people of Harar are famously fickle ; we knew not what the morrow might bring forth from the Amir's mind — in fact, all these African cities are prisons on a large scale, into which you enter by your own will, and, as the significant proverb says, you leave by another's.
Page 99 - Speke in the rear. The prospect was not agreeable. About twenty men were kneeling and crouching at the tent entrance, whilst many dusky figures stood further off, or ran about shouting the war-cry, or with shouts and blows drove away our camels. Among the enemy were many of our friends and attendants ; the coast being open to them, they naturally ran away, firing a few useless shots, and receiving a modicum of flesh-wounds.
Page 105 - April, to commit them to the deep, Lieut. Herne reading the funeral service. Then with heavy hearts we set sail for the near Arabian shore, and, after a tedious two days, carried to our friends the news of unexpected disaster. APPENDIX I. DIARY AND OBSERVATIONS MADE BY LIEUTENANT SPEKE, WHEN ATTEMPTING TO REACH THE WADY NOGAL. DIARY. ON the 28th October, 1854, Lieutenant Speke arrived at Kurayat, a small village near Las Kuray (Goree Bunder), in the country called by the Somal " Makhar," or the eastern...