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is supposed to have held some post in the Abyssinian army, together with some half-dozen Greek traders, shared the same fate. Besides this town, fifteen villages are said to have been burnt, and the number of the victims is estimated at 1,500. Mrs. Lager was taken prisoner, but was released after being detained for four days. It was stated that Walda Michael's soldiers were all armed with Remington rifles, which were supposed to have been furnished by the Egyptians. Immense quantities of these weapons had been purchased by Egypt during the past years. It is possible, of course, that the many reverses which were sustained by the Egyptian troops when in Abyssinia, and which resulted in their leaving the country without their arms and superfluous baggage, may account in some measure for the fine equipment of some portions of the native Abyssinian regiments; but it was evidently in the interest of the khedive, in his struggle with King John, to incite rebellion among the powerful native chiefs, and furnish them with the means of successfully seconding him. The King soon succeeded in reducing the rebels, and then marched on Massowah, which he was reported to have captured during August. It was also reported that Ratib Pasha, one of the ablest Egyptian generals, had been killed in the defense of that city. ADVENTISTS. SEVENTH-DAY ADVENTISTs. A special session of the Seventh-day Adventist General Conference was held at Battle Creek, Mich., beginning March 31st. Fifteen delegates were present, representing the State Conferences of California, Ohio, New York, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, Indiana, Illinois, Maine, and Iowa, or ten out of the fourteen State Conferences. Letters were also received and read in behalf of the Kansas, Vermont, and Ohio Conferences, in behalf of the cause among the Norwegians in the United States and Europe, in behalf of the cause in Sweden and in Virginia. The meeting, it was stated by the president, was held to consider what means could be furnished to meet the demand for a more extensive and active prosecution of the work of the denomination among the people of the United States, and the scenes of its operations in Europe. Highly-favorable reports of the work were made from the several State Conferences, Canada, and Colorado. The publication was recommended of a small hymnbook for use among the Swedes. A resolution was passed recommending the devotion by members of the church of one-tenth of their income to the cause of God. The ministers were advised to set this duty before the brethren, and a committee was appointed to prepare a tract upon the subject of systematic benevolence. Efforts were ordered to raise $10,000 to establish a press in Europe. The management of the Hygienic Agency was approved, and increased activity in the prosecution of the health reform and the publication of books on that subject was recommended. A debt was reported of $10,000 on the college, against which were unpaid pledges sufficient, if paid in, to meet it.
The fifteenth annual session of the Seventhday Adventist General Conference was held at Lansing, Mich., beginning September 19th. A conference recently organized in Kentucky and Tennessee was recognized and admitted to the General Conference. Elder James White was chosen president. Resolutions were adopted regretting the neglect of the health reform and the return to old, unhealthful habits of living as likely to work only evil to the people, and to displease God, and advising ministers “to practise the reform themselves and teach it to the people on all suitable occasions,” urging young men and middle-aged men to engage in the work of the ministry; noticing an increased interest in camp-meetings and pledging greater efforts to improve them; expressing interest in the spread of the doctrines of the church in the Southern States, and pledging aid to the work “as fast and as far as our means and men will allow ; ” recommending special efforts to secure the interest of persons and companies in different parts of the world holding the Sabbath doctrines of this church, in its tract and missionary work; commending the school of the General Conference to the people of the church, and urging contributions to it “to place it upon a good financial basis;” noticing “with joy.” the appearance of a French paper issued in Europe under the direction of the General Conference Committee; reiterating the precept that one-tenth of the income of members of the church should be given to God; and recognizing with gratitude the continued and growing feeling of fraternity between their own denomination and the Seventh-day Baptists.
The following is a summary of the statistics of this denomination as they were present#. the General Conference, September 19, 1876:
given as for 1875, with modifications for a few known changes which had taken place, the reports from those States for 1876 not having been received. The report showed a gain from 1875 of 27 ministers, 59 churches, 2,012 members, and $11,279.85 in contributions for systematic benevolence. Companies of Seventh-day Adventists were noticed as having been organized in Texas, Virginia, and Maryland. The treasurer of the Seventh-day Adventist Educational Society reported that his receipts and expenditures for the year beginning August 12, 1875, had been each $12,354.73. The society had property, consisting of the college grounds and buildings, detached lots of real estate, detached buildings, etc., valued at $51,651.37, and was indebted $13,360.89, leaving $38,290.48 as the amounts of its assets after all debts were paid. The treasurer of the Seventh-day Adventist Publishing Association reports that his receipts and expenditures for the thirteen months ending September 15, 1876, had been each $161,423.56. The association had property valued at $142,656.82, and was indebted $45,937.28, leaving as its net assets $96,719.59. The treasurer of the Health Reform Institute reported that his receipts for the thirteen months ending September 14, 1876, had been $18,188.15, and his expenditures $14,584.78. The institute had property valued at $39,490.18, and was indebted $1,800, leaving $37,690.18 as the amount of its clear assets. The treasurer of the General Conference reported that his receipts and expenditures for thirteen months, ending September 15, 1876, had been each $6,194.09. The meetings of the General Conference and the several societies were held in connection with a camp-meeting, at Lansing, Mich., which was estimated to be the largest ever held by one denomination. Sixteen hundred and twenty-two persons were permanently encamped on the ground, and the regular daily attendance at the meetings numbered between two and three thousand. AFGHANISTAN,” a country in Central Asia, bounded north by east by Turkistan, east by British India, south by Beloochistan, and west by Persia; area 278,000 square miles, population about 4,000,000. Present ruler, Amir Shere Ali. The army of the Emir, according to late accounts, is said to consist of 100,000 men, divided into fifty-seven regiments of infantry, thirty batteries of artillery, and twenty regiments of cavalry. The pay of the soldiers was, in 1876, raised by the Amir to seven rupees a month. The Governments of both Russia and British India sent, in 1876, special embassies to Afghanistan, an indication of the growing desire of each of these powers to obtain a controlling influence upon this battle-field of their Central Asian policy. The transactions of both em. bassies are kept a profound secret, and the reports of the Indian and Russian newspapers are too contradictory to be of any value. The Indian Government selected as its envoy a native Mohammedan of India. Special embassies were also received by the Amir from the rulers of Bokhara and Kelat, and all the reports from Afghanistan concurrently point to the growing excitement concerning the approaching crisis in the complications of Central Asia. The Amir devoted special attention to his army. The number of troops and the pay of the soldiers were increased; dependent chieftains were ordered to send their contingency of troops to Cabool; and even a gun-manufactory was established in the same city. One of the mountain-tribes living along the frontier between Afghanistan and British India, the Afridis, made répeated inroads into Indian territory. They were reported to number about 10,000 soldiers, and to have received promises of aid from other tribes. The Indian Government at first endeavored to pacify them by negotiations and promises of subsidy, but, when this proved unavailing, determined to put an end to their inroads by force of arms.
* For an account of the regulation of the northern frontier, and of the population of the several provinces, see ANNUAL CycloPAEDIA for 1874.
As the absence of trustworthy information makes it impossible to give a connected account of the progress of Afghan affairs, we give the views of men well known as authorities on all questions of the state of Central Asia on the situation in Afghanistan.
Emil Schlagintweit, the well-known explorer of Central Asia, gives the following account of the relations of Russia and Persia to Afghanistan (see Augsburg Gazette, No. 235, 1876): “In Afghanistan, the state of affairs is by no means satisfactory, although Shere Ali seems to be slowly getting the upper hand of his rivals. Europeans are carefully excluded.” After citing several cases in support of this statement, among others the case of Colonel McGregor, who wished to make a scientific trip
to Herat, but was refused permission to enter the country, M. Schlagintweit continues as follows: “The report that Russia had sent a diplomatic agent to Cabool is not confirmed in the Indian papers. The cause for the report seems to have been the defeat which Persia some time ago suffered at the hands of the Turkomans in its recent expedition against Merv, and which may be made the basis of Perso-Russian demands upon Afghanistan. This will be looked upon very unfavorably in India, but cannot be prevented. Merv, the oldest city of Central Asia, which was once celebrated for the fertility of the country surrounding it, gradually decayed after fanatical conquerors destroyed the dam which collected the waters of the Murghal River to irrigate the fields. As the country became less cultivated, the manners of the Turkomans living there decidedly deteriorated, and they became the most daring robbers, carrying off slaves and booty from the north of Persia. Persia, as well as Russia, repeatedly sent out troops to punish the Turkomans, but the former power was always defeated. Thus in 1860, 22,000 Persians were repulsed by 5,000 Turkomans, while, only a few months ago, five Persian battalions and ten cavalry regiments with one battery were so completely defeated by an equally strong force of Turkomans, that the Shah of Persia was forced to discontinue the campaign. The Turkomans, emboldened by this success, now threaten Russian settlers on the Atrek line, and even now Russian journals discuss the necessity of a regulation of the border, by which the left shore of the Atrek would come to Russia. At present Russia employs skirmishing-parties to punish the robbers, thus smoothing the way for a revival of old treaties between Persia and Cabool, which are so distasteful to England. On January 23, 1853, the Shah and the ruler of Herat agreed that, if it should ever become necessary for the subjects of Herat to furnish auxiliaries to Persia for the purpose of punishing the Turkomans, they may send as many troops to Persia as they desire, but only for a temporary stay or to pass through that country. On the other hand, the Shah considers himself bound to aid Herat if it is threatened by a foreign power, whether it be Afghanistan or some other. In the Treaty of Paris, of 1857, Persia bound herself to England never to interfere in the internal affairs of Afghanistan; but this treaty leaves Persia free with regard to all its other neighbors. At present Afghanistan is as much interested in the punishment of the Turkomans as Russia and Persia. The occupation of Mymana, the newest province of Afghanistan, effected only in March of the present year, would be seriously endangered, if the large number of those dissatisfied with the change would effect a union with the Turkomans. The dethroned Amir was brought to Cabool, and is there held in close confinement, that he may not become the head of a conspiracy. A decisive blow can only be dealt the Turkomans, if they are attacked at the same time from the direction of the Caspian Sea as well as from Merv. The cause for a joint step of the three interested states exists. A joint action on their part, however, does not appear probable, even to an Asiatic; to him it seems rather that Russia will enter the campaign alone. Russia, however, fears to disturb its amicable relations to Persia, as it would be impossible to prevent a violation of Persian territory in pursuing defeated bodies of Turkomans, and of Afghan territory in case of an attack on Merv. The idea of an agreement with Persia, therefore, becomes plausible, while at the same time the interests of Afghanistan would be taken into consideration. Such agreements must arouse anew the suspicions of England, who found it such a difficult matter to secure in the Afghan frontier a line inaccessible to Russian influence.” Captain Burton, another high authority on the questions relating to Central Asia, speaks in the following manner of the relations of India to the Amir of Cabool: “Afghanistan, this restless state of robber chieftains, has, thanks to our intervention, considerably increased in area and population. But, nevertheless, Shere Ali complains because Lord Lawrence recognized his elder brother, Afzul Khan, who was friendly to us, because Lord Mayo did not fulfill all of his wishes, and because Lord Northbrook did not pay his subsidies (Ishould rather say his tribute) as regularly as he desired. For that reason he refused to receive the English mission to Kashgaria in Cabool, under the pretext that he was not able to protect its members in his country, saying, ‘Their blood be on their own heads if they come to Cabool!' For that reason, also, he will not permit an English resident at his court, and the native representative of the Indian Government, Wakil-i-Sarkar-i, is barely ermitted to address the Amir in the durbar. t is a fact that this miserable chief believes, because we have taught him to believe it, that he holds the road to British India in his hands. He is convinced that he need only offer his assistance to Russia, to drive us from India. That he hates us, we know; during the mutiny of the Sepoys, he urged his wise father, Dost Mohammed, although in vain, to invade the Punjaub; that he despises us, we must see, and we must feel that our policy has given him a right to do so.” AFRICA. The area of Africa, according to the latest calculations, amounted to 10,901,– 100 square miles, with a population of about 206,000,000.* The further existence of the Transvaal Republic, an independent state of Southeastern Africa, was seriously endangered by a disastrous war with the Kaffres, in which the army
* For the area and population of each of the geographical four- divisions of Africa, see ANNUAL CyclopaediA for
of the republic was completely routed. In consequence, a general desire for annexation to Great Britain became manifest among the population. The Transvaal Republic has been an independent state since 1848. (See TRANsv.AAL REPUBLIC.) The difficulties of the British Government and the Orange River Free State with regard to the South African diamond-fields were settled satisfactorily for both parties during the year. The project of a South African Confederation under the protectorate of Great Britain received a o impulse by the disastrous war of the Transvaal Republic against the Kaffres. It gained in popularity both among the inhabitants of the British colonies and the two republics of Orange River and the Transvaal, being opposed only by the extreme republicans of the latter. In the early part of the year, President Brand, of the Orange River Free State, went to England to settle the disputed boundary question, and was received with great distinction, both in the Cape Colony and in England. President Burgers, of the Transvaal Republic, who visited the Cape Colony in March, was also received with great honors, and everything was done to impress the two Presidents with the desirability of the proposed confederation. In March, Mr. Froude, the historian, sent a report to Lord Carnarvon, the Colonial Secretary, on the advantages to be derived from the confederation scheme. The report was very favorably received throughout the South African colonies. On August 3d Lord Carnarvon opened a conference on South African affairs. The members attending the conference were, Sir Garnet Wolseley, as vicepresident, President Brand of the Orange River Free State, Sir Theophilus Shenstone, Secretary of the Interior, of Natal, Messrs. Akerman and Robinson, members of the Legislature of Natal, and Mr. J. A. Froude, who represented West Griqua-Land. Lord Carnarvon, in his opening address, stated that the conference was to be of a deliberative character only, that the communications of the different members were to be of a confidential character, and the object was to deliberate on the interests of South Africa, which was constantly growing in importance, and possibly on the constitution of a South-African Confederation. President Brand stated that in accordance with a resolution of the national Legislature he was not empowered to take part in the deliberations on the confederation scheme, but that he would take part in the discussion of other questions. The following sessions of the conference were held with closed doors, and its results are as yet (November, 1876) unknown. The war of the British on the West Coast with the Ashantees was succeeded during the past year by one with Dahomey. An outrage on a British merchant at Whydah, the principal port of Dahomey, led a British officer after an investigation to impose a fine of palm-oil, amounting to about £6,000, upon the King to be paid by June 1st. The King refuse
to pay the fine, inviting the British to visit Abomey, his capital, where he promised to pay the demand in powder and bullets. The British in consequence blockaded the ports of Dahomey, thus preventing any supplies
from reaching the natives. The King in re
taliation blockaded the paths into the interior, and imprisoned a of of whites residing at Whydah. In May, the Sultan of Zanzibar entered into a treaty with Great Britain to suppress the slave-trade in his dominions. He rigidly enforced this treaty, and in consequence was troubled with a rebellion among the tribes in the interior, which he, however, succeeded in quelling with the aid of the British. The difficulty between Zanzibar and Egypt, on account of the o by the latter power of five ports on the Indian Ocean belonging to Zanzibar, was settled by the withdrawal of the Egyptian troops in February. This act of McKillop Pasha, the Egyptian general, was disavowed by the Khedive. The advances of Egypt into the interior of Africa received a decided check. Fighting continued during the year, and the Abyssinians appeared to be successful. King John of Abyssinia was also troubled during the year by revolts of native chiefs, incited by the Egyptians, which greatly impeded his operations against the latter. (See Abyssinia.) The attempts to restore the disordered finances of Egypt to a sound basis did not meet with the expected result. The relations of the Egyptian Government to its subjects in the Soudan continued to be of the most friendly character. The native tribes, not subject to the jurisdiction of Egypt, also sought the friendship of the latter power. M'tesa, the chief ruling on the north shore of the Victoria Nyanza, and the ruler of the Somauli country, sent embassadors to Cairo. (See EGYPT.) An insurrection broke out, in the early part of the year, among the native tribes of Algeria, which, however, was suppressed in a very short time. (See ALGERIA.) The Empire of Morocco was disturbed during July by an insurrection among the Ghitan tribe, who refused to furnish their usual military contingent. An extraordinary mission was sent by the Emperor to France and Italy during the year, in order to negotiate commercial treaties. (See Morocco.) Quite a tumult was caused among the Jews of Tunis by the murder of one of their number by a Mohammedan. Order was restored by the immediate execution of the offender, and through the personal efforts of the consuls, to whom the Bey had given satisfactory guarantees. During the month of March an attack was also made upon the consular judge of Italy, which for a time caused considerable excitement. During the year the Government commissioned M. Krantz, a French engineer,
to provide for Tunis a system of railroads to connect with the railroads of Algeria. (See TUNIs.) The war in Liberia between the Government and the native tribes was brought to a successful close in April by the intervention of the United States. The war was followed by financial difficulties, which embarrassed the Government considerably. The British dominion in Africa was again : enlarged during the year, by the purchase of the island of Socotra, in the Indian Ocean, from its native prince, adding 1,382 square miles, with 3,100 inhabitants, to the British territory in Africa. (See SocotRA). During the months of July and August, Commodore Hewett undertook an expedition against the negroes living on the shores of the Niger. These negroes, who had formerly done a profitable business in bringing the native products down to the coast in their canoes, and who had lost this carrying-trade entirely through steamiers which were sent up the river, made several attempts to stop the English trade. A large number of vessels were attacked by them, among them the King of Masafa, which was almost completely destroyed. In order to put a stop to these depredations, Commodore Hewett, on July 29th, set out on an expedition against the negroes, having with him about one hundred sailors and marines. He met with the first resistance on July 31st. Effecting a landing under the cover of his gunboats, he succeeded in completely defeating the negroes, losing one dead and fourteen wounded in the affair. On August 2d he again defeated the negroes, and pressing on reached Omitoha, 170 miles from the mouth of the river, on August 5th. Here the commodore had a long interview with the chief, and as no further disturbances were to be exected the expedition returned, destroying on its way a village, the inhabitants of which had blocked up the river. During the month of August disturbances arose among the native tribes on the Gaboon. The French authorities immediately blockaded the mouth of the river, and dispatched troops to restore quiet. AGOULT, MARIE CATHERINE SoPHIE DE FLAvigny, Countess d’, a French authore better known under the nom de plume of Damie Stern, born at Frankfort-on-the-Main, in 1805; died March 5, 1876. She was the daughter of the Wicomte de Flavigny, a French nobleman, who, during the emigration of the French princes, married Marie Bethmann, the daughter of one of the richest bankers in Frankfort. She received her first education in the convent of the Sacred Heart, married the Count d'Agoult in 1827, and after that passed several years in traveling through Switzerland, Italy, and Germany. Her first literary productions were a series of pleasing novels, “Hervé,” “Julien,” “Valentia,” and “Nélida,” which appeared from 1841 to 1845 in the Presse.