Travels In The Interior Of Africa - Volume 2 of 2 - By Mungo Park

 -   The girls received their instruction in the daytime, but
the boys always had their lessons, by the light of a - Page 110
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The Girls Received Their Instruction In The Daytime, But The Boys Always Had Their Lessons, By The Light Of A

Large fire, before day break and again late in the evening; for, being considered, during their scholarship, as the domestic

Slaves of the master, they were employed in planting corn, bringing firewood, and in other servile offices through the day.

Exclusive of the Koran, and a book or two of commentaries thereon, the schoolmaster possessed a variety of manuscripts, which had partly been purchased from the trading Moors, and partly borrowed from bushreens in the neighbourhood and copied with great care. Other manuscripts had been produced to me at different places in the course of my journey; and on recounting those I had before seen, and those which were now shown to me, and interrogating the schoolmaster on the subject, I discovered that the negroes are in possession (among others) of an Arabic version of the Pentateuch of Moses, which they call Taureta la Moosa. This is so highly esteemed that it is often sold for the value of one prime slave. They have likewise a version of the Psalms of David (Zabora Dawidi); and, lastly, the Book of Isaiah, which they call Lingeeli la Isa, and it is in very high esteem. I suspect, indeed, that in all these copies there are interpolations of some of the peculiar tenets of Mohammed, for I could distinguish in many passages the name of the Prophet. It is possible, however, that this circumstance might otherwise have been accounted for if my knowledge of the Arabic had been more extensive.

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