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fon Icander, who upon his arrival was crowned without any oppofition. For feveral years after Ifcander afcended the throne, the queen his mother, together with the Acab Saat, Tesfo Georgis, and Betwudet Amdu, governed the kingdom defpotically under the name of the young king. Accordingly, after fome years fufferance, a confpiracy was formed, at the head of which were two men of great power, Abba Amdu and Abba Hafabo; but the confpirators proving unfuccessful, fome of them were imprisoned, fome put to death, and others banished to unwholesome places, there to perish with hunger and fevers.
The king having proved fuccefsful in the war against Adel, in his return to Shoa, left his troops, which was the northern army, în the northern provinces, as he paffed; so that he came to Shoa with a very small retinue, hearing that Za Saluce, his prime minifter, and commander in chief, had gone to Amhara, ofih place he was governor. This traitor, however, had left his creatures behind him, after inftructing them what they were to do. Accordingly, the second day after Ifcander's arrival in Tegulat, the capital of Shoa, they fet upon him, during the night, in a fmall house in Aylo Meidan, and murdered him while he was fleeping. They concealed his body for fome days in a mill, but Taka Chriftos, and fome others of the king's friends, took up the corpfe and expofed it to the people, who, with one accord, proclaimed Andreas, fon of Ifcander, king; and Za Saluce, and his adherents, traitors.
In the mean time, Za Saluce, far from finding the encour agement be expected in Amhara, was, upon his first appearance, fet upon by the nobility of that province; and, being deferted by his troops, he was taken prisoner; his eyes were put out, and, being mounted on an ass, he was carried amidst the curfes of the people through the provinces of Amhara and Shoa. Ifender was fucceeded by his fon Andreas, or
Amda Sion, an infant, who reigned seven months only.
FROM 1495 TO 1508.
SOON after the unfortunate death of the young king Alexander, the people in general, wearied of minorities, unanimously chofe Naod for their king. He was Alexander's youngest brother, the difference of ages being but one year, though he was not by the fame mother, but by the king's fecond wife Calliope.
Naod was no fooner feated on the throne than he published a very general and comprehensive amnesty. By proclamation he declared, "That any person who fhould upbraid another with being a party in the misfortunes of past times, or say that he had been privy to this or that confpiracy, or had been a favourite of the empress, or a partizan of Za Saluce, or had received bribes from the Moors, should, without delay, be put to death." This proclamation had the very best effect, as it quieted the mind of every guilty perfon when he faw the king, from whom he feared an inquiry, cutting offall poffible means by which it could be procured against him.
Naod having, by his courage and prudence, freed himself from fear of a foreign war, set himself, like a wife prince, to the reforming of the abufes that prevailed every where among his people, and to the cultivation of the arts of peace. He died a natural death, after having reigned 13 years.
FROM 1508 TO 1540.
DAVID was only eleven years old when he was placed upon the throne; and, at is inauguration, took the nanie of Lebna Denghel, or the virgin's frankincense; then that of Etana Denghel, or the myrrh of the virgin and after that, of Wanag Segued, which fignifies reverenced, or feared, among the lions, with whom, towards the last of his reign, he refided, in wilds and mountains more than with men. died in the year 1540, after a reign of complicated misfor
CLAUDIUS, OR ATZENAF SEGUED.
FROM 1540 To 1559.
CLAUDIUS fucceeded his father David III. being yet young, and found the empire in eircumftances that would have required an old and experienced prince. But, though young, he poffeffed thofe graceful and affable manners, which, at first fight, attached people of all forts to him. He had been tutored with great care by the emprefs Helena, was expert in all warlike exercises, and brave beyond his years. Such is the character given this prince by the Abytinian writers; but Mr. Bruce is of opinion that he did not merit thefe encomiums.
Under this reign, Mr. Bruce relates fome particulars of Nur, governor of Zeyla, and general of the Moors, which, in fpite of the narrow limits to which we are confined, we cannot avoid tranfcribing. He was deeply in love with a widow lady, Del Wumbarea, from whom he had marks of gratitude to expect, as he had affifted her in making her efcape into Atbara that day her husband was flain. But this heroine had conftantly refufed to liften to any propofals; nay, had vowed the never would give her hand in marriage to any man, till he fhould first bring her the head of Claudius, who had flain her husband. Nur willingly accepted the condition, which gave him few rivals.
Claudius, who had hitherto been victorious, had marched towards Adel, when he received a message from Nur, that, there ftill remained a governor of Zeyla, whole family was chofen as a particular inftrument for fhedding the blood of the Abyffinian princes; and defired him, therefore, to be prepared, for he was speedily to fet out to come to him. Claudius had been employed in various journies through different parts of his kingdom, repairing the churches which the Moors had burnt; and he was then rebuilding that of Debra Werk when this meffage of Nur was brought to him. This prince was of a temper never to avoid a challenge; and if he did not march against Nur immediately, he staid no longer than to complete his army as far as poffible. his march for Adel, very much, as it is faid, vice of his friends.
He then began against the adThis
This advice was fingular, as he was at that time victorious. But many prophecies were current in the camp, that the king was to be unfortunate this campaign, and in which he was to lose his life. Thefe unfortunate rumours tended much to difcourage the army, at the fame time that they feemed to have a contrary effect on the king, and to confirm him in his refolution to fight.
Both armies were drawn up and ready to engage, when the chief priest of Debra Libanos came to the king to tell him a dream, or vision, which warned him not to fight; but the Moors were then advancing, and the king on horseback made no reply, but marched briskly forward to the enemy. The cowardly Abyffinians, upon the first fire, fled, leaving the king engaged in the middle of the Moorish army, with twenty horfe and eighteen Portuguese mufqueteers, who were all flain around his perfon; and he himself fell, after fighting manfully, and receiving twenty wounds. His head was cut off, and by Nur delivered to Del Wumbarea, who directed it to be tied by the hair to the branch of a tree before her door, that the might keep it constantly in fight. Here it remained three years, till it was purchased from her by an Armenian merchant, her first grief, having, it is probable, fubfided upon the acquifition of a new hufband. The merchant carried the head to Antioch, and buried it there in the fepulchre of a faint of the fame name.
In this manner died king Claudius, in the 19th year of his reign, who, by his virtues and capacity, might hold a first place among any feries of kings we have known, victorious in every action he fought, except in that one only in which he died. Á great flaughter was made after this among the routed, and many of the first nobility were flain in endeavouring to escape; among the reft, the dreamer from Debra Lebanos, his vifion, by which he knew the king's death, not having extended fo far as to reveal his own. The Abffinians immediately transferred the name of this prince ipto their catalogue of faints, and he is called St. Claudius in that country to this day.
This battle was fought on the 22d March 1559; and the victory
victory gained by Nur was a complete one. The king and most of his principal officers were flain; great part of the army taken prisoners, the reft difperfed, and the camp plun. dered; fo that no Moorish general had ever returned with the glory that he did. But afterwards, in his behaviour, he exhibited a spectacle more memorable, aud that did him more honour than the victory itself; for, when he drew near to Adel, he clothed himself in poor attire, like a common foldier, and bare-headed, mounted on an ordinary mule, with an old faddle and tattered accoutrements; he forbade the fongs and praise with which it is ufual to meet conquerors in that country, when returning with victory from the field, He declined alfo all fhare in the fuccefs of that day, declaring that the whole of it was due to God alone, to whofe mercy and immediate interpofition he owed the destruction of the Chrilt-ian army.
MENAS, OR ADAMAS SEGUED.
FROM 1559, TO 1563.
MENAS fucceeded his brother Claudius, and found his kingdom in almost as great confusion as it had been left by his father David. As nothing occurs very remarkable in his reign, we fhall pass on to his fucceffor.
SERTZA DENGHEL, or MELEC SEGUED.
FROM 1563 TO 1595.
HE was only twelve years old when he came to the throne, and was crowned at Axum with all the ancient ceremonies, The beginning of his reign was marked by a mutiny of his foldiers, who, joining themselves to fome Mahometans, plundered the town, and then disbanded.
Sertza. Denghel, having proved victorious in all his wars, determined to chaftife the malcontents of a people called the Damots, when he was accofted by a priest, famous for his holiness and talent for divination, who advised him not to undertake that war; but the king exprefed his contempt both of the advice and the advifer. The priest is faid to have limited his advice ftill further, and to have only begged him