With Ibn Khordadbeh talking of the Mountains of the Moon I give as Illustration the oldest drawing known of the Ruwenzori from Henry Stanley's In Darkest Africa, 1890.
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Ibn Khordadbeh (886) Al-Masalik wa'l-Mamalik (Book of Roads and Countries)
Taken from : Journal Asiatique 1865
Also called Ibn Khurdadhbih and Ibn Hordadbesh, Ibn Khurradadhbih
As postmaster general he traveled very far and wrote the above book about it. Both Ibn Hawqal and Istakhri would later write a book with the same title.
His description of the world ends in Aden, the furthest southern place were the postal service reaches. (This way he gives indirect evidence that no large scale immigration to Africa from Arabia had taken place. And that the Swahili civilization then starting was of African origin)
The world-map in this book; the world in four parts.
………The biggest king of India is the Balhara or king of kings. The other kings of that country are those of Djabah, of Tafen, of Djouzr, of Ghanah, of Rahina and of Kamroun. The king of Zabedj (one has surely to read here of the Zendjes, according to the translator) is called Alfikhat, the king of the Nubiens, Kamil (or kabil), the king of the Abussins, Nedjachy (or najashi), the king of the isles in the eastern sea Maharadja, the king of the Slaves, Kobad.
……Aden is one of the chief ports in that sea. There is no wheat nor cattle but it has lots of amber and musk. It is the place for goods from Sind, Hind and China, from Zendj, Habacha, Qoloum (Persia), Basra, Jidda and Qulzum, this sea is the big eastern sea and out it comes good amber from Zinj and Abyssinia, Persia.
…..In the mountains of the Zendjes there atre the big snakes who eat men and buffalos; there are even those who eat elephants…..
Once more he talks about the Zendjes, when talking about the big snakes in their forests. Here however the translator thinks it must be Zabaj as it occurs in the middle of the description of that part of the world.
THE COUNTRY OF THE DYNASTY OF IDRIS
……It has been recognized that the country inhabited by Abyssinians and the Blacks is seven years in length. Egypt forms only the sixtieth part of the earth. According to the most widespread opinion, the land has not less than 500 years of walking, one-third of which is cultivated, inhabited and populated, one-third occupied by vast solitudes, and the last third invaded by the sea……
…… He who goes to the land of the Zendjes gets leper (or elephantiasis) (Man dakhal bilad ez-Zendj, feld boudd an yadjrab) (more recent authors have translated this by scabies). This sentence gets repeated further by many authors still for centuries to come.
SOURCE AND MOUTH OF RIVERS
……The Nile of Egypt comes out of the Mountains of the Moon, throws itself into two lakes, flows towards the regions on the northern side of the equator, passes by Nubie, and enters Egypt...