16th century Africa maps (Climate Change)

MrKap

Ad Honorem
Aug 2011
2,353
There are quite a few maps from the 16th century that depict Africa with rivers. Big rivers. Bigger than the nile.



FROM: https://www.colonialvoyage.com/africa-bibliography-portuguese-colonial-history-16th-18th-century/#

Is there any archeological evidence on port trading cities, or perhaps legends on cities in the East Africa area, where there appears to be a giant river forking into the Atlantic?


Additionally, I can't seem to find any single map which depicts that river that flows into the Atlantic connecting with the Nile, however, when viewing several different maps it becomes suspect that perhaps there was a connection. Are there any known legends or myths which mention seafarers travelling a route which resembles an Atlantic -> Nile River travel route?
 
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Apr 2017
1,655
U.S.A.
The maps you describe are probably just speculation, similar to the speculated northwest passage of the Americas. If there was a river route through Africa from the Atlantic to the Indian ocean the Europeans probably would have found and used it. Africa was known as the dark continent for a reason, it was fully mapped and explored until the late 19th century.
 
Sep 2012
1,141
Tarkington, Texas
Back during the last Ice Age there were a number of rivers in where the Sahara is now. Ever since the wind patterns changed the rivers have been drying and contracting. Back then the Congo Basin was a Savanna. That is why you can find Savanna animals in the tree zone now. What I found interesting is the Kalahari has been a desert for a longer period. Clive Cussler wrote a book about a Civil War man of war sailing up one retreating river.


Pruitt
 
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Shtajerc

Ad Honorem
Jul 2014
6,743
Lower Styria, Slovenia
Europeans back then wouldn't know much about the interior of Africa since they mostly only sailed along the coast or establish trading posts or forts there. They wouldn't venture further inwards for several reasons, succumbing to tropical diseases being one of the main ones. So they'd put all sorts of things on the maps in order to not let the space empty (looks better if there's something there). Perhaps they'd hear accounts of something from the Africans they traded with, but you' never know how accurate those stories were. Could as well be BS like the Indians were telling the Spanish about Eldorado to get them of their backs for all it's worth.
 

Ighayere

Ad Honorem
Jul 2012
2,638
Benin City, Nigeria
Medieval Arabic sources often stated that the Nile river was connected to the Niger river (the "Nile of bilad al-Sudan") because this is what medieval Muslim geographers believed. For centuries, these medieval sources (plus Leo Africanus's book and a few other sources) are almost all that European cartographers had available to go on when drawing their maps of the interior of Africa.
 

Ichon

Ad Honorem
Mar 2013
3,711
Medieval Arabic sources often stated that the Nile river was connected to the Niger river (the "Nile of bilad al-Sudan") because this is what medieval Muslim geographers believed. For centuries, these medieval sources (plus Leo Africanus's book and a few other sources) are almost all that European cartographers had available to go on when drawing their maps of the interior of Africa.
This. Few had any idea how large African landmass was and the source of the Nice meeting somewhere the source of the Niger might make sense if not knowing the scale of the continent.

There has been significant climate change in Africa even in relatively recent history but starting in ancient era of recorded history what is now barely habitable was much easier though still arid environment.

http://historum.com/middle-eastern-african-history/59790-lake-tritonis.html
 
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