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Progress of African Discovery, before Park's first Expedition.--Park's Early Life.
The first information we have respecting the interior of Africa is derived from Herodotus, who, during his residence in Egypt, endeavoured to collect as much intelligence as possible respecting the general aspect of the country. He describes it as far less fertile than the cultivated parts of Europe and Asia, and much exposed to drought, with the exception of a few verdant spots. To the northern coast, he gives the name of the forehead of Africa; and says that immediately south from it, the comparative fertility of the soil rapidly decreases. There are natural hills of salt, out of which the inhabitants scoop houses to shelter themselves from the weather; rain they have not to fear, as scarcely a drop ever alights upon that sultry region. Farther south still, there is no food to support man or beast--neither shrub, nor a single drop of water; al