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Alvares, Manuel, 1526-1583, et al. / Ethiopia Minor and a geographical account of the Province of Sierra Leone : (c. 1615)
(1990)

Chapter 2: The Kingdom of Jagau and the Grand Borçalo: the character of the land and people,   pp. [unnumbered]-4 ff.


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ChaDter 2
Tho Kingdom of Jagau and the Grand Bdrcalo     the Character of
the tand and 0eople
*        ~~~~~~~~I
Before returning to Joala, as I promised in chapter 1,
in order to discuss the character of the land and people(a) in
terms of the way of life throughout, I must interpolate that
from the Sereno to the river called the Rio do Berbecim, which
takes its name from that of the native heathen, the coast runs
South East for a length of 11 leagues, in the middle of which is
thevery famous Port of Joala, which we will shortly discuss. To
speak now of the position and character of the river of this people,
the greater part of it is thickly forested. As regards its
productiveness, the land is much infcrior to those prcceding it,
and lacks staple foodstuffs, meat and other necessities of life;
and there is not-as much trade in merchandise among the Berbecim,
though they do have a fair, which is generally held at the king's
town, and hides, cattle and cloth can be bought there.
Before we discuss the character of the people, let us state
the boundaries of their lands. It (sic) meets those of the Grand
Borcalo oh the North, North East, and East; and the coast, after
leaving the Rio de Berbecim, the true boundary of the (kingdom of)
Jagau, runs South East to the mouth of Gambia.
Now passing on, let us speak of the character of our
Berbecim. They have an unique disposition, being so gentle that
from birth (?) they never change for the worse. Our people
receive great favours from them, because they have no fear of
thieves (there). They keep their personal possessions and
merchandise in the most public streets since they are as safe there
(a) Jagomai, king of the Berbecims, sends a challenge.


 


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