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An Inquiry the Principles of the Poor Laws, and to shew their immoral tendency. By 'J.

, E. Bichen, F. L. S. 4s, 6d,

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Narrative of the Loss of she American Brig Commerce, wrecked the Western Coast of Africa, in 1815; with an Account of the Sutterings of her surviving Officers and Crew, who were enslaved by the wandering Arabs, on the Great African Desert; and Observations, made during the Travels of the Author', while a Slave to the Arabs. By James Riley, late Master and Supercargo. Concluded by a Description of the City of Tombuctuu, on the River Niger, and of another large City, far South of it, on the same River, called Wassanah. Printed uniformly with Park's and Adams's Travels in Africa. 410, with a Map. 365, sons

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Recently Imported by BOSSANGE and MASSON, Serrand–Théorie des révolutions, rapprochée des principaux évènemens qui en ont été l'origine, le développement ou la suite, avec une Table générale et analytique. 4 vols. 8vo. Paris, 1817. 21. 2s.

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TO THE READER. The GENERAL INDEX, announced in our foriner Number, is deferred till the Pub. lication of the NINETEENTH VOLUME,—and it will form Nos. XXXIX. and XL.

London: Printed by C. Roworth, Bell-yard, Temple-bar.



JULY, 1817.

Art. I. - Historical Account of Discoveries and Travels in

Africa. - By the late John Leyden, M. D.; enlarged and completed to the present time, with Illustrations of its Geography and Natural History, us well as of the Moral and Social Condition of its Inhabitants. By Hugh Murray, Esq. F. R. S, E.

2 vols. 8vo. Edinburgh. 1817. FROM the remotest period of European history, down to the pre

sent moment, discoveries in Africa have been eagerly prosecuted as an object of peculiar interest. The Phænicians, the Greeks, the Romans, the Arabians, the Portugueze, the French, and the English, have all fitted out their expeditions to this quarter, some from a liberal spirit of inquiry, and with the view of extending human knowledge, some from a religious zeal to propagate the faith which they professed, and others from the all-powerful impulse of the

auri sacra fames.' In the early ages we have imperfect traces of voyages undertaken to ascertain the extent of the unknown coast of this great continent beyond the pillars of Hercules, on the side of the Mediterranean, and beyond Cape Guadafui, on that of the Red Sea; and after those, as Mr. Murray observes, many endeavours

to penetrate into the depth of that mysterious world in the interior, which, guarded by the most awful barriers of nature, inclosed, as with a wall, the fine and fertile shores of northern Africa.' - No want of zeal is discoverable in those who embarked on any of the expeditions on record, whether ancient or modern, whatever the primary object of thene might have been; and yet, to the reproach of the state of geographical science in the nineteenth century, as compared with the march of other branches of knowledge, if we cast our eyes on the chart of Africa, we shall see its grandest features distorted, or vaguely traced, or left incomplete:--so imperfect, indeed, is our knowledge of this vast continent, that in what are deemed the best charts, full two-thirds of it appear a blank; or, what is still worse, chains of mountains and trackless deserts, rivers, lakes and seas, are laid down ad libitum ; their course and direction being determined by no other scale or dimensions than the mere whim of the map-maker, and many of them having, in all probabiHity, no existence but on paper.

In the two volumes of Mr. Murray no pretensions are set up to new discoveries, no novel theories are broached, no favourite hypotheses advanced, nor is any condemnation passed on those which VOL. XVII. NO, XXXIV.



have been formed by others. They contain a plain, sensible,
well-arranged, and, as far as our reading and recollection serve us,
a faithful abstract, and connected view of the progress of discovery
in Africa from the earliest ages.' The author tells us that Doctor
Leyden's' Historical and Philosophical Sketch of the Discoveries
and Se ments in Northern and Western Africa, &c.' forms the
basis of his publication ; that bis original wish was to preserve
the portion of the narrative composed by Dr. Leyden, distinct from
the additions here made to it; that such a plan, however, would ne-
cessarily have broken down the unity and connection of the work;
and that there appeared a necessity therefore for taking down,
as it were, the parts of Doctor Leyden's performance, and arrang-
ing them anew in the more comprehensive plan which is now adopt-
ed. In our opinion Mr. Murray has judged wisely, in so doing,
as otherwise, instead of supplying the world with a distinctly ar-
ranged view of progressive discovery, he could only have furnished,
at best, an ill-arranged piece of patchwork. That no injustice,
however, may be done to the memory of Doctor Leyden, a list is
given of the parts of these volumes for wbich the compiler is in-
debted to the labours of that gentleman, and which form, indeed,
but a very small portion of the present work: a work which we
can safely recommend to those who take an interest in African dis-
coveries, as containing, in a condensed form, an abstract of almost
all the information hitherto collected of the geography of this im-
mense continent, with brief notices of the manners and condition of
its inhabitants.

As our review can embrace only a small part of the vast mass of information comprehended in the two volumes, it may be sufficient to give a brief summary of their contents; and then to abstract such parts of the narrative of discoveries and travels’ as appear to be most interesting and important, and which we conceive to be those persevering enterprizes undertaken, first by the Portugueze, and afterwards by the English; adding at the same time, from our own sources of information, brief sketches of the history and character of those unfortunate adventurers, who have llen a sacrifice to their zeal for discovery, and the enlargement of human knowledge.

The two introductory chapters are employed in tracing the progress of discovery from the earliest ages to the commencement of maritime enterprize in modern Europe—the various attempts of the ancients to circumnavigate Africa-the subsequent endeavours to penetrate into the interior-the history of the first entrance of the Arabians into Africa--their establishment on the Niger, and the foundation of Tombuctoo. The remainder of the volume, which is occupied by the first book, gives the progress of modern disco

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