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




















 - 

Pickin are children.

Boney bwoy is not a local living skeleton, but a native from Bonny
River.

Sally own is - Page 380
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"Pickin" Are Children.

"Boney bwoy" is not a local living skeleton, but a native from Bonny River.

"Sally own" is Sierra Leone.

"Blow them head-bone inside" means, blow the top off their heads.

I have a collection of trade English letters and documents, for it is a language that I regard as exceedingly charming, and it really requires study, as you will see by reading Crashey Jane's epistle without the aid of a dictionary. It is, moreover, a language that will take you unexpectedly far in Africa, and if you do not understand it, land you in some pretty situations. One important point that you must remember is that the African is logically right in his answer to such a question as "You have not cleaned this lamp?" - he says, "Yes, sah" - which means, "yes, I have not cleaned the lamp." It does not mean a denial to your accusation; he always uses this form, and it is liable to confuse you at first, as are many other of the phrases, such as "I look him, I no see him "; this means "I have been searching for the thing but have not found it"; if he really meant he had looked upon the object but had been unable to get to it, he would say: "I look him, I no catch him," etc.

The difficulty of the language is, however, far less than the whole set of difficulties with your own mind. Unless you can make it pliant enough to follow the African idea step by step, however much care you may take, you will not bag your game.

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