The World and Its People

The World and Its People

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Excerpt: ... under the rule of the native king, is said to have a population of three millions. The natives are well formed and in many respects do not show the peculiarities of form and feature found in the negro race. They are cleanly in their habits, and do not neglect their daily bath. After bathing they anoint themselves with the oil from the butter tree. This is a good cosmetic, and keeps the skin in fine condition in so hot and trying a climate. Among the better class the clothing consists of an immense cloak. Sometimes it is made of the most costly silk. In time of warfare this dress is changed for a close vest covered with metal ornaments and scraps of Moorish writing. These are considered charms against danger. Loose cotton drawers, and large boots made of a dull red leather, complete the costume. The great chiefs wear gold breastplates; and as many of the natives as are able wear a profusion of gold ornaments. The king of Ashantee has over three thousand women laborers, whom he has purchased from their parents for a small sum. During the working season these women are scattered over his numerous plantations. When they are at home, in the capital of the country, they live on two streets. Here they remain in seclusion, seeing only the king and his female relatives. So strict are the laws with regard to the seclusion of these women, who are practically slaves, that to look upon one, even by accident, is to be sentenced to death. Pg 290 In every town well-stocked and well-regulated markets are held. These supply the natives with the necessaries of life and with the various European manufactures that are in demand. The poorer classes subsist almost wholly upon fish. The common drink of the people is palm wine. At all festivals and public meetings the most cruel acts and brutal customs prevail. Should a chief die, many lives must be sacrificed in his honor; and, on the death of the king, all his personal attendants and many others, male and female, ..
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Product details

  • Paperback
  • 189 x 246 x 8mm | 263g
  • United States
  • English
  • black & white illustrations
  • 1236692934
  • 9781236692931