Expressions of emotions in Gold Coast tribes.
Differences between males and females in sexual characteristics.
Castrated rams lose horns and manes.
Female members of tribes have no difficulty getting the husbands they want.
My dear Sir
I have postponed writing to you before in the hope that I might be
able to send you some information of value before I started for the
interior, which I do in two or three days to search for the source of
the Niger. I have unfortunately very little to say— As regards
expression I can at present answer but one query. The head is
shaken laterally in negative & nodded in affirmative among the Gold
Coast tribes. I find it exceedingly difficult to seize expressions
if not prepared for them (as one w
There is one breed of sheep only on the Gold Coast (where I have
spent most of my time since coming out). The rams have horns &
manes: the females neither. When castrated not only horns but hair is
affected. I have frequently asked about the age at wh. the horns sprout
Women in Africa at all events among the more intelligent pagan tribes have no difficulty about getting the husbands they want, although it is considered unwomanly to ask a man to marry them, & that on the Gold Coast I am informed they never do— They are quite capable of falling in love, and even of forming tender passionate and faithful attachments. As a rule tribes do not intermarry but I have little doubt that there are many exceptions. Women do not like to marry strangers visiting their country because they do not like to leave their own families; on the other hand when a Foula or Mandingo comes among the Soosovo or Timmanies (pagan coast tribes in this neighbourhood) they try to make him settle & marry amongst them. They like to breed from superior men that the offspring may be of use to the town a fact rather opposed to the vulgar ideas about African want of foresight. Girls are not forced to marry the choice of the family in certain tribes: in others (of a lower kind) she is The intermarriage-between-tribes question is an important one. I shall pay attention to it.
I am not likely to see the gorilla up here. At present it is only found a
little above Cape S
My plans on returning from the Kong Mountains (if I get there) are not settled. I want much to study the Upper Niger & Haussa Country before I leave Africa but cannot tell whether I shall have the opportunity. I am not likely however to return home just yet. Any queries you may send to me shall be faithfully attended to, as far as lies in my power. The worst of it out here is that one gets no assistance; things which every resident ought to know one has to find out for oneself often in a few days—if one can.
Trusting that your health is permitting you to continue labouring in science, and so benefiting all who inquire and observe | I remain | Yours truly | Winwood Reade
- f1 6558.f1The last extant letter from Reade is that of 23 May 1868 (Correspondence vol. 16), in which Reade mentioned observations about expression that he recalled from an earlier stay in Africa. CD had enclosed a copy of his queries on expression in his letter to Reade of 21 May  (ibid.). For a copy of CD's queries on expression, see Correspondence vol. 17, Appendix VI.
- f2 6558.f2The Gold Coast was the name of the former British colony that now makes up the larger part of the country of Ghana (Columbia gazetteer of the world s.v. Ghana). See query number 17 of CD's queries on expression (Correspondence vol. 17, Appendix VI).
- f3 6558.f3Reade refers to the West African dwarf or Djallonke sheep (see I. L. Mason 1951, p. 32). CD had asked Reade to make observations on sheep in his letter of 21 May  (Correspondence vol. 16). In Descent 2: 247; 284--5, CD cited Reade for information on the horns and the mane of this breed.
- f4 6558.f4The breeds referred to have not been identified. Senegambia was the former name of the region of west Africa that now makes up the countries of Senegal, Gambia, and Mali (Columbia gazetteer of the world).
- f5 6558.f5In his letter of 21 May  (Correspondence vol. 16), CD had asked Reade to observe whether and to what extent women of `barbarous tribes' were able to choose husbands. In Descent 2: 374, CD quoted this section of Reade's letter.
- f6 6558.f6The people Reade refers to as `Mandingo' are now known as Mandinka; `Timmanie' are now called Temne. Reade probably also refers to the Susu or Sousou people (see Reade 1873, 2: 374).
- f7 6558.f7Loango was a former African state in the basin of the Kouilou and Niari rivers, now largely in south-western Republic of the Congo (EB; see also Reade's map of the area he called gorilla country in Reade 1873, 1: facing p. 1). Cape San Juan is the northern boundary of Corisco Bay in Equatorial Guinea and Gabon.
- f8 6558.f8On the mythical Kong mountains, see Bassett and Porter 1991.
- f9 6558.f9The territory of the Haussa or Hausa people was in present-day northern Nigeria with additional territory in Mali and Cameroon (Columbia gazetteer of the world).
- f10 6558.f10CD refers to Félix d'Azara and probably to Azara 1809.
- f11 6558.f11CD may refer to McLennan 1865, a work on primitive marriage.