DARFUR

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DARFUR, or DARKoOR (Country o/Foor); a considerable kingdom of Central Africa, occupying a large portion of the wide interval between Abyssinia and Bornou, the most eastern part of N igritia. It is difficult to fix its limits, as it is known to us almost solely by the journey of Mr. Browne, one of the most enterprising of modern travellers. On the east, it has Kordofan, and the country of the Shillux, which separate it from Sennaar and abyssinia; on the west, Bergoo, which divides it from Begherme and Bornou; while die regions to the south are occupied by barbarous nations, extending to and inhabiting the Mountainsof the Moon. With respect to its climate, productions, the animals it contains, and also the manners of its inhabitants, and its government, it nearly resembles other countries in Africa. The people are semibarbarous ; their government is a despotism, and their occupation chiefly agriculture. The mechanical artst are at a low ebb, and their houses are rudely constructed cf clay, with a coating of plaster, and with proportionably scanty accommodations. Its commerce is extensive. The grand intercourse is with Egypt, and is earned on entirely by the African system of caravans. There is no regular caravan, as between Fezzan and Cairo. The motions of that from Fur are extremely uncertain, and two, or even three years sometimes elapse without one. The caravan going to Egypt consists often of 2000 camels and 1000 men. Among the exports, the most important are slaves, male and female, taken in the Negro countries to the south ; camels, ivory, the horns, teeth and hide of the rhinoceros and hippopotamus, ostrich feathers, gum, pimento, parroquets in abundance, and a small quantity of white copper. The imports are extremely various, comprising beads of all sorts, toys, glass, arms, light cloths of different kinds, chiefly made in Egypt, with some of French manufacture, red Barbary caps, small carpets, silks, wrought and unwrought shoes* and a considerable quantity of writing paper. The Darfoor people submit their daughters to excision. They are Mohammedans, but, in spite of the prophet, much given to intoxicate themselves with a certain beverage called merissah. Unlimited polygamy is allowed, and the nearest relationship is no obstacle to marriage. Fathers often marry their daughters, and brothel's their sisters. The army is calculated at 70,000 men. The soldiers endure thirst and fatigue with uncommon patience.