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W.J. Turner, Del

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JOURNAL

OF THE

ROYAL GEOGRAPHICAL SOCIETY

FOR THE SESSION 1878-79.

VOL. XLIX.

[PUBLISHED SEPTEMBER 20TH, 1880.]

I.-Itineraries of the Second Khedivial Expedition: Memoir explaining the New Map of Midian made by the Egyptian Staff-officers. By RICHARD F. BURTON.

[WITH MAP.*]

"Tanta ad pericula et impendia satis fuit causa sperare quod cuperent."PLINY, Nat. Hist.' xxxiii. 21.

PART I.

The Return to North Midian, and Cruise in the Gulf El'Akabah.

Introductory Remarks. In the following pages I offer to the Royal Geographical Society the Route-book and Itineraries of the Expedition of 1877-78, in its threefold division, which formed our second journey to Midian; and here it is proposed to dwell especially upon the lines of road; the positions, the geography of the country; and, briefly, upon all that constitutes pure topography. Thus the present Journals will serve as letter-press to the map drawn up from the flying surveys of the three Egyptian Staff-officers who were detailed by the Khediv of Egypt to lay down the limits of His Highness's easternmost provinces. The papers, therefore, will in no wise assume the character of a popular volume.

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A popular account of the First Khedivial Expedition has already appeared in The Gold Mines of Midian,' &c. (London: C. Kegan Paul and Co., 1878). The ethnological information, such as descriptions of the tribes collected by the second, has been reserved for future publication; the notes upon the little collection of antiquities and human crania have been

* From 'The Land of Midian (Revisited),' C. Kegan Paul and Co., 1879. VOL. XLIX.

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forwarded to the Anthropological Institute; and the coins of Midian to the Royal Asiatic Society. 'The Land of Midian (Revisited),' my last two volumes (London: C. Kegan Paul & Co., 1879), contain a relation historique, a general account of our last journey, without, however, entering into scientific notices or topographical details.

And, first, a few observations upon the country which has, I may say, been explored by the two Khedivial Expeditions of 1877 and of 1877-78.

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The Land of Midian is by no means one of the now numerous "geographical expressions. The present tenants of the soil give a precise and practical definition of its limits. Their "Arz Madyan") extends from El-'Akabah north (Raper: N. lat. 29° 28') to El-Muwaylah, with its Wady, El-Surr (N. lat. 27° 40'), a total latitudinal length of 108 direct geographical miles.* South of this line, the seaboard of northwestern Arabia, as far as El-Hijáz, has no generic name. The Bedawin are contented with such vague terms, derived from some striking feature, as "The Lands of Zibá," of "Wady Salmá," of "Wady Damah," of "El-Wijh,"-to denote the tract lying between the parallels of El-Muwaylah and of Wady Hamz () in N. lat. 25° 55′ 5′′. Thus the north-south length of the southern moiety would be 105 direct geographical miles, or a little less than the northern; and the grand total would be 213 miles.

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The breadth of this easternmost province of Egypt is the distance from the sea to the maritime mountains. In "Madyan" (proper), the extremes would be 24 and 35 miles. For the southern half these distances may be doubled. Bedawin are here again definitive in their limits: all the "Tihámah," or lowlands and their ranges, belong to Egypt; east of it, the Daulat Shám, the "Government of Syria claims possession.

I have taken the liberty of calling the whole tract Midian: the land above El-Muwaylah (Madyan proper) I would term "North Midian," and that below it" South Midian." In the days of the ancient Midianites the frontiers were so elastic that at times, but only temporarily, they embraced Sinai, and were pushed forward even into Central Palestine. Moreover,

*Let me protest at once against the assertion contained in an able review of "The Gold Mines "( Pall-Mall Gazette,' June 7, 1878). The writer makes ancient Midian "extend from the north of the Arabic Gulf (El-'Akabah (?)) and Arabia Felix (which? of the classics or of the moderns?) to the plains of Moab"exactly where, if it ever did, it assuredly does not now extend.

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