130 results in English
Great Trading Routes of the Sahara
This 1889 map of trans-Saharan trading routes by French explorer Edouard Blanc reflects the growing priority that Europeans gave to land-based trade during the late 19th-century imperial “scramble for Africa.” In articles about his work, Blanc stressed the importance of identifying “natural” geographic routes that would connect French colonial possessions in west Africa, such as Senegal, to Algeria in north Africa, and link the Mediterranean coast to Sudan and central Africa. Blanc based his maps not only on his own travels but also on nearly a century of reports from ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
The Uganda Journal, Volume I, Number 1, January 1934
The Uganda Literary and Scientific Society was established at Entebbe, Uganda Protectorate, in 1923. Its main activity consisted of the reading of papers and the delivery of lectures on topics relating to Uganda. In 1933 the society moved its headquarters to Kampala and decided to issue a regular publication, The Uganda Journal. The journal’s declared aim was “to collect and publish information which may add to our knowledge of Uganda and to record that which in the course of time might be lost.” Four issues per year were published ...
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Table Mountain
This view of Table Mountain (Cape Town, South Africa) is from a set of 27 drawings on 15 sheets that was discovered in the National Library of South Africa in 1986. The drawings are important for presenting the earliest realistic depictions of the Khoikhoi, the original inhabitants of the Western Cape. This drawing, probably made from a ship moored off Robben Island, is one of the most accurate renderings of Table Bay from this period. The notes at the lower left, in Dutch, are keyed to the letters on the ...
Khoikhoi Fording a Stream
This view of a Khoi woman and child fording a stream with a Khoi man behind them is from a set of 27 drawings on 15 sheets that was discovered in the National Library of South Africa in 1986. The drawings are important for presenting the earliest realistic depictions of the Khoikhoi, the original inhabitants of the Western Cape. The Khoikhoi were pastoralists who were derived from the aboriginal hunting population of southern Africa, the San. After establishment of the Dutch colony at Table Bay in 1652, the Khoikhoi were ...
Khoikhoi in a Storm
This view of a group of Khoi people in a storm is from a set of 27 drawings on 15 sheets that was discovered in the National Library of South Africa in 1986. The drawings are important for presenting the earliest realistic depictions of the Khoikhoi, the original inhabitants of the Western Cape. The drawing shows the traditional dress of the Khoi women: peaked hat, kaross (sheepskin cloak) across the shoulders, a small apron or fuller skin kaross around the waist, and leggings of dried raw-hide. The text on the ...
African Ox and Khoi Couple
These two sketches depicting an African ox and a Khoi couple are from a set of 27 drawings on 15 sheets that was discovered in the National Library of South Africa in 1986. The drawings are important for presenting the earliest realistic depictions of the Khoikhoi, the original inhabitants of the Western Cape. The annotations provide details about African cattle and about the differing dress worn by Khoi men and women. The cattle owned by the Khoikhoi were of the Sanga breeds, which resulted from the interbreeding of the indigenous ...
Harvesting Scene
This view of a harvesting scene is from a set of 27 drawings on 15 sheets that was discovered in the National Library of South Africa in 1986. The drawings are important for presenting the earliest realistic depictions of the Khoikhoi, the original inhabitants of the Western Cape. The drawing shows a farming scene with the stacking of hayricks from ox wagons, with a Khoi matjieshuis (mat house) in the foreground and a farmhouse at the back. The Khoi are asking for tobacco from a colonist who is smoking as ...
Khoikhoi Yoking Oxen, and Other Sketches
These sketches are from a set of 27 drawings on 15 sheets that was discovered in the National Library of South Africa in 1986. The drawings are important for presenting the earliest realistic depictions of the Khoikhoi, the original inhabitants of the Western Cape. Various activities are depicted in these vignettes: at the top, a Khoi man holding oxen while a colonist adjusts the yoke; in the middle, a woman milking a cow into a large ceramic pot; at bottom left, men dealing with a recalcitrant sheep; and at bottom ...
Khoi Women and Dutch Colonist
This view of a group of Khoi women in various costumes and poses, with a woman colonist holding a container, is from a set of 27 drawings on 15 sheets that was discovered in the National Library of South Africa in 1986. The drawings are important for presenting the earliest realistic depictions of the Khoikhoi, the original inhabitants of the Western Cape. The annotations describe Khoi dress and ornamentation, explaining that Khoi women wear several strings of beads around the neck, with copper beads the most favored. The note remarks ...
Khoi Women
These sketches of Khoi women engaged in various activities are from a set of 27 drawings on 15 sheets that was discovered in the National Library of South Africa in 1986. The drawings are important for presenting the earliest realistic depictions of the Khoikhoi, the original inhabitants of the Western Cape. The Khoikhoi were pastoralists who were derived from the aboriginal hunting population of southern Africa, the San. After establishment of the Dutch colony at Table Bay in 1652, the Khoikhoi were subjugated in wars with the Dutch in 1659 ...
Khoi Women Dancing
These depictions of Khoi women are from a set of 27 drawings on 15 sheets that was discovered in the National Library of South Africa in 1986. The drawings are important for presenting the earliest realistic depictions of the Khoikhoi, the original inhabitants of the Western Cape. In these drawings, the artist has caught the movement of the bodies, clothing, and beads. The annotation, in Dutch, refers to “five dancing Hottentot women,” the latter being the historic name given to the Khoikhoi at the time of white settlement, and now ...
Khoikhoi Drinking from Kaross
These two sketches are from a set of 27 drawings on 15 sheets that was discovered in the National Library of South Africa in 1986. The drawings are important for presenting the earliest realistic depictions of the Khoikhoi, the original inhabitants of the Western Cape. On the left, Khoikhoi are being given a drink by a colonist, a kaross (a cape or blanket made from skins) serving as the receptacle into which it is poured. The right-hand drawing shows the sequel, with a man drinking from the kaross. The notes ...
Sketches of Khoikhoi
These two sketches are from a set of 27 drawings on 15 sheets that was discovered in the National Library of South Africa in 1986. The drawings are important for presenting the earliest realistic depictions of the Khoikhoi, the original inhabitants of the Western Cape. The sketch on the left depicts an older woman with a walking stick and poorly kept leggings; the sketch on the right depicts an elegantly dressed younger woman. The text, in Dutch, reads: “When the Hottentots are newly born their noses are pushed in, and ...
White Horsemen; Lion Hunt
These sketches are from a set of 27 drawings on 15 sheets that was discovered in the National Library of South Africa in 1986. The drawings are important for presenting the earliest realistic depictions of the Khoikhoi, the original inhabitants of the Western Cape. The top sketch shows armed colonists on horseback; the correction to the drawing suggests that there was only one acceptable way to carry a musket. The bottom sketch shows a trap set to catch a lion, which is being fired at from the undergrowth on the ...
Khoi Family
This sketch of a Khoi couple and child seen from behind is from a set of 27 drawings on 15 sheets that was discovered in the National Library of South Africa in 1986. The drawings are important for presenting the earliest realistic depictions of the Khoikhoi, the original inhabitants of the Western Cape. The woman wears a pointed skin cap, large earrings, double kaross (a blanket or cape made of skins), and skin leggings. The man has ornaments in his hair, a skin bag as well as the roll sack ...
Khoi Groups
These two sketches are from a set of 27 drawings on 15 sheets that was discovered in the National Library of South Africa in 1986. The drawings are important for presenting the earliest realistic depictions of the Khoikhoi, the original inhabitants of the Western Cape. The drawings give details of Khoi activities and dress. The annotations, in Dutch, refer to the tobacco bag hanging on the back of the individual on the left of the left-hand sketch; to the ox-hide shoes fastened with leather thongs worn by the person shown ...
Lion Hunt
These vivid sketches of a lion hunt are from a set of 27 drawings on 15 sheets that was discovered in the National Library of South Africa in 1986. The drawings are important for presenting the earliest realistic depictions of the Khoikhoi, the original inhabitants of the Western Cape. The note, in Dutch, at the upper right states: “The lions cause these people much loss in cattle, but they combat them bravely.” The longer note on the left concerns relations between the Khoi, who by this time lived a semi-settled ...
Khoi Dancers and Musical Instruments
This series of sketches is from a set of 27 drawings on 15 sheets that was discovered in the National Library of South Africa in 1986. The drawings are important for presenting the earliest realistic depictions of the Khoikhoi, the original inhabitants of the Western Cape. The sketches show Khoi activities, including facial painting, drumming, and dancing. The annotations, in Dutch, provide details of the designs used in face painting and of the different drums played by men and women. The right side of the sheet is devoted to dancing ...
Khoi Arrows; Sketches of Farm Servants
These sketches are from a set of 27 drawings on 15 sheets that was discovered in the National Library of South Africa in 1986. The drawings are important for presenting the earliest realistic depictions of the Khoikhoi, the original inhabitants of the Western Cape. Shown here are weapons used by the Khoi. The accompanying text, in Dutch, remarks on the smoothness and sharpness of the arrows and indicates the varieties of wood used by the Khoi to make the bows. Also shown is an assegai, a long spear that is ...
Khoikhoi Milking
This sketch is from a set of 27 drawings on 15 sheets that was discovered in the National Library of South Africa in 1986. The drawings are important for presenting the earliest realistic depictions of the Khoikhoi, the original inhabitants of the Western Cape. The drawing shows Khoi men and women milking large African cattle. Milk was a main means of sustenance for the Khoi, and African herders developed special techniques to make a recalcitrant cow produce milk, even if her calf had died. The note, in Dutch, describes these ...
Khoikhoi with Cattle
This sketch is from a set of 27 drawings on 15 sheets that was discovered in the National Library of South Africa in 1986. The drawings are important for presenting the earliest realistic depictions of the Khoikhoi, the original inhabitants of the Western Cape. The drawing at the top shows a Khoi family traveling with their domestic animals. The annotations note the walking stick carried by the man and the rings made of elephant tusks around his arms, designed to parry blows by enemies. In a reference to a known ...
French Mandate for Togoland
As a consequence of World War I, Germany was stripped of its colonies and the Ottoman Empire was partitioned and forced to surrender control of territories in the Middle East. The Covenant of the League of Nations established a system under which the League conferred upon certain states a mandate to rule those former colonies which, in the language of the Covenant, were “inhabited by peoples not yet able to stand by themselves under the strenuous conditions of the modern world.” Britain and the British Empire, France, Belgium, and Japan ...
Memoirs of an Arabian Princess: An Autobiography
Emilie Ruete (1844–1924), also known as Princess Sayyida Salme of Zanzibar and Oman, was born in Zanzibar (part of present-day Tanzania), the daughter of Saʻīd bin Sulṭān, sultan of Zanzibar and Oman. In 1867 she married a German merchant, Rudolph Heinrich Ruete (1839–70). The couple settled in Hamburg. Memoirs of an Arabian Princess is an account of Ruete’s royal youth in Zanzibar and Oman. First published in German in 1886, the book describes the culture and society of Zanzibar as experienced by an Arab girl growing to ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
Biographic Sketch of Mohammad Ali, Pacha of Egypt, Syria, and Arabia
Biographic Sketch of Mohammad Ali (1769–1849), composed by an unknown author, was published in Washington in 1837. Muḥammad ʻAlī was pasha and wali (governor) of Egypt within the Ottoman Empire from 1805 until his death. The book begins by comparing him to Napoleon, noting that they shared the same birth year and the same “insatiate ambition.” The author describes Muḥammad ʻAlī’s military service under the Ottoman governor of Kavalla in Rumelia (northeastern Greece). Muḥammad ʻAlī also became a tobacco dealer during this period, an experience that probably inspired ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
Dahomey
In preparation for the peace conference that was expected to follow World War I, in the spring of 1917 the British Foreign Office established a special section responsible for preparing background information for use by British delegates to the conference. Dahomey is Number 105 in a series of more than 160 studies produced by the section, most of which were published after the conclusion of the 1919 Paris Peace Conference. Dahomey (present-day Benin) was an African kingdom that arose most likely in the second quarter of the 17th century. It ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
Upper Senegal and Niger
In preparation for the peace conference that was expected to follow World War I, in the spring of 1917 the British Foreign Office established a special section responsible for preparing background information for use by British delegates to the conference. Upper Senegal and Niger is Number 107 in a series of more than 160 studies produced by the section, most of which were published after the conclusion of the 1919 Paris Peace Conference. Upper Senegal and Niger was a French colony, established in 1904 as part of the Government-General of ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
Italian Libya
In preparation for the peace conference that was expected to follow World War I, in the spring of 1917 the British Foreign Office established a special section responsible for preparing background information for use by British delegates to the conference. Italian Libya is Number 127 in a series of more than 160 studies produced by the section, most of which were published after the conclusion of the 1919 Paris Peace Conference. The study covers physical and political geography, political history, social and political conditions, and economic conditions. It recounts how ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
Italian Somaliland
In preparation for the peace conference that was expected to follow World War I, in the spring of 1917 the British Foreign Office established a special section responsible for preparing background information for use by British delegates to the conference. Italian Somaliland is Number 128 in a series of more than 160 studies produced by the section, most of which were published after the conclusion of the 1919 Paris Peace Conference. Italian Somaliland (part of the present-day Republic of Somalia) came under Italian control in early 1889, when the sultan ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
Ivory Coast
In preparation for the peace conference that was expected to follow World War I, in the spring of 1917 the British Foreign Office established a special section responsible for preparing background information for use by British delegates to the conference. Ivory Coast is Number 104 in a series of more than 160 studies produced by the section, most of which were published after the conclusion of the 1919 Paris Peace Conference. The Ivory Coast (the present day Republic of Côte d’Ivoire) was a French colony, the origins of which ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
An Agreeable Discussion of the History of Egypt and Cairo
This work is a printed edition of Ḥusn al-muhādara fī akhbār Miṣr wa al-Qāhira (An agreeable discussion of the history of Egypt and Cairo) by Jalal al-Din al-Suyuti. It covers the history of Egypt, its rulers and their armies, and their historical reputations. The book consists of two parts, printed in a single volume, by the Al-sharafīya publishing house in Cairo in 1909. Imām Abū al-Faḍl ʻAbd al-Raḥmān ibn al-Kamāl Abū Bakr Jalāl al-Dīn al-Suyūṭī was born in Cairo in 1445. He memorized the Qur'an at a young age ...
Contributed by Qatar National Library
Yearbook for 1887
This volume is a yearbook for 1887, treating political events in Egypt for that year, covering activities in various ministries and governmental offices. The work is divided into 12 sections, with each devoted to a month. In the entry for January, for example, we read of the arrival in the port of Alexandria of the crown prince of Italy, the future King Victor Emmanuel III, and the state functions that were held in his honor. In the section devoted to April, we read the obituary of Muḥammad Sharif Pasha, the ...
Contributed by Qatar National Library
Central Panel of the Painted Cave of Gáldar
The Painted Cave of Gáldar is in northwest Gran Canaria, in the Canary Islands archipelago of Spain. It is part of a complex of pre-Hispanic caves that were rediscovered in 1862. Full archaeological excavations took place in 1987−2005. The six caves are carved out of the tufa and arranged around a central space. The first occupation of the settlement dates from the sixth century, but radiocarbon dating suggests that the cave acquired its current appearance in the late 12th century. The cave system was created by the Guanches, the ...
Pre-Hispanic Idol
Shown here are three views of what remains of a terracotta seated human figure in an accentuated stylized form. The figure was discovered in the Painted Cave site at Gáldar, northwest Gran Canaria, in the Canary Islands archipelago of Spain, which lies about 100 kilometers west of Morocco. The cave complex was inhabited before the Castilian conquest of the Canaries in the 15th century by an indigenous people called the Guanches. The head of this figure is missing, but other examples of Guanche ceramics include figures with heads as prolongation ...
Flemish Paintings on Tables
In the late 15th and first half of the 16th centuries, the cultivation, refining, and marketing of sugar became a major part of the expanding economy of the Canary Islands. The main drivers of the sugar economy were landowners, agents, and traders from Flanders, which at that time was part of the Spanish Empire. Antwerp became the great receiving and distributing center for Canary Island sugar in Europe. One result of this economic activity was the introduction of Flemish art into the Canaries. Art became a means by which the ...
Nautical Astrolabe
This nautical astrolabe is thought to be among the earliest surviving nautical astrolabes and dates from about 1500−1520. Most nautical astrolabes had a carved mater (graduated circular element), unlike the solid and compact instrument shown here, which bears a resemblance to the astrolabes of Diogo Ribeiro (died 1533), a Portuguese cartographer and inventor who spent most of his life in Spain. The purpose of nautical astrolabes was to measure the altitude of the sun or a star above the horizon. Navigators could determine a ship’s latitude by knowing ...
Cliff
José Jorge Oramas (1911−35) was an artist of Gran Canaria, one of the Canary Islands of Spain. Oramas died young from tuberculosis, and only 70 of his paintings survive. Most are depictions of Canary landscapes and are full of light conveyed through vivid color and intense clarity. Risco (Cliff) shown here is a typical example. The orange, white, and blues impart dynamism to this simple horizontal composition. The sharply perpendicular palm trunks connecting the land and sky add to the sense of space and perspective. Gran Canaria’s vegetation ...
Painting 111
Manolo Millares was a self-taught artist born in 1926 in Las Palmas, Gran Canaria, in the Canary Islands archipelago of Spain. Shown here is his Cuadro 111 (Painting 111), made some time after 1960, an abstract work in startlingly vivid tones of green, purple and black. Millares was influenced by Surrealism from the late 1940s and attracted to the works of Klee and Miró. In that period, he began making abstract pictograms inspired by the Guanches, the indigenous Canaries people, and the pre-Hispanic culture of the islands, and he was ...
Smoking Room: Stories of the English People of the Canaries
Rafael Romero Quesada, better known by his pseudonym, Alonso Quesada (1886−1925), was an important modernist poet living on Gran Canaria, in the Canary Islands archipelago of Spain. He was also literary critic and translator, who explored many forms of creative writing, among them fiction, theater, and journalism. Shown here is Smoking room: Cuentos de los ingleses de la colonia en Canarias (Smoking room: Stories of the English people of the Canaries; the cover is actually marked “Smocking-room”), some parts of which are in manuscript and others in typescript. The ...
Letter from Saulo Torón to Fernando González
This document is a letter from Saulo Torón (1885−1974) to his fellow Gran Canaria poet Fernando González (1901−72). Torón was one of the most important exponents of Canaria (Spanish) poetic modernism, along with Tomás Morales and Alonso Quesada. He belongs to the so-called Lyrical school of Telde, which includes González, Montiano Placeres, Luis Baez, Patricio Pérez, and Hilda Zudán. Torón’s poetry was characterized by its simple tone and lack of elaborated style. In this letter, he sends his friend the galley proofs of his poem “El Caracol ...
Albéniz. Variations for T.R.M.
Albéniz. Variaciones para S.A.R. (Albéniz. Variations for T.R.M.) is an album of music by Pedro Albéniz (1795−1855) composed between 1820 and 1850 for Their Royal Majesties, meaning the Spanish monarchs Ferdinand VII and his elder daughter, the future Isabella II. Albéniz was piano tutor to Isabella before her majority and to her younger sister, Infanta Maria Luisa Fernanda, later duchess of Monpensier. The volume is bound in regal red leather, stamped in gold, with the crown on the cover. It contains 24 handwritten scores, including ...
Infertile Woman II
Mujer infecunda II (Infertile woman II) is a late work by the Canary Islands artist Antonio Padrón Rodríguez (1920−68). The works of this painter’s last years are characterized by intense use of color and abstract expressionism, although here he has also used some dark somber tones. The image presents a fertility ritual, perhaps being performed by a woman seeking to become pregnant. She is a metaphor for the earth and the struggle to wrest growth from the islands, with their periods of drought. It is an image of ...
The Green Lightning
El rayo verde (The green lightning) is a late work by the Canary Islands artist Antonio Padrón Rodríguez (1920−68). He was born and lived most of his life in Gáldar, Gran Canaria, and many of his works reflect a strong sense of Canary location, customs, and people. He is linked to the Luján Pérez school, named for religious sculptor José Luján Pérez (1756−1815), who inspired a tradition of artists working in various media and focused on local culture, identity, and the position of Canary people in the world ...