Travels Of Richard And John Lander Travels in West Africa (Congo Francais, Corisco and Cameroons) by Mary H. Kingsley




















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Lembarene is strictly speaking a district which includes Adanlinan
langa and the Island, but the name is locally used to - Page 200
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Lembarene Is Strictly Speaking A District Which Includes Adanlinan Langa And The Island, But The Name Is Locally Used To Denote The Great Island In The Ogowe, Whose Native Name Is Nenge Ezangy; But For The Sake Of The General Reader I Will Keep To The Everyday Term Of Lembarene Island.

Lembarene Island is the largest of the islands on the Ogowe.

It is some fifteen miles long, east and west, and a mile to a mile and a half wide. It is hilly and rocky, uniformly clad with forest, and several little permanent streams run from it on both sides into the Ogowe. It is situated 130 miles from the sea, at the point, just below the entrance of the N'guni, where the Ogowe commences to divide up into that network of channels by which, like all great West African rivers save the Congo, it chooses to enter the Ocean. The island, as we mainlanders at Kangwe used to call it, was a great haunt of mine, particularly after I came down from Talagouga and saw fit to regard myself as competent to control a canoe.

From Andande, the beach of Kangwe, the breadth of the arm of the Ogowe to the nearest village on the island, was about that of the Thames at Blackwall. One half of the way was slack water, the other half was broadside on to a stiff current. Now my pet canoe at Andande was about six feet long, pointed at both ends, flat bottomed, so that it floated on the top of the water; its freeboard was, when nothing was in it, some three inches, and the poor thing had seen trouble in its time, for it had a hole you could put your hand in at one end; so in order to navigate it successfully, you had to squat in the other, which immersed that to the water level but safely elevated the damaged end in the air.

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