Morocco, Or Marocco (Arab. Maghreb el-Aksa, "the extreme west," or El-Maghreb, "the west1'), a sultanate in N. W. Africa, between lat. 27° and 36° N. and Ion. 4° 30' E. and 11° 50' W., bounded N. by the Mediterranean, E. by Algeria, S. by the desert of Sahara, and W. by the Atlantic; area, about 260,000 sq. m. Its frontier on the desert is generally considered to be on a line drawn.directly E. from Cape Nun; its frontier on the province of Oran, Algeria, was determined by treaty of March 18, 1845. The coast line on the Mediterranean, about 250 m. long, runs N. W. from Algeria to. Cape Tres Forcas (Ras ed-Deir), thence W. S. W. to about Ion. 4° 30' W., where it again turns N. W. to Punta de Africa, its most northerly point; thence the course of the coast line is W. S. W. through the strait of Gibraltar to Cape Spartel on the Atlantic, where it turns abruptly and pursues a general S. W. course of about 750 m. to Cape Nun. On the Mediterranean coast Spain holds several fortified convict stations: Ceuta on Punta de Africa, Peilon de Velez, Alhucemas, Me-lilla, and the Jafarin islands. There are several small harbors belonging to Morocco, of which the best, that of Tetuan, at the mouth of the little river Martil, is unfit for large vessels.
On the Atlantic coast, besides Tangier in the strait of Gibraltar, the principal harbors are: El-Araish (Larash), Rabat, Casablanca (Dar el-Baida), Mazagan (Jedyda), Saffi (Asfy), and Mogadore. Mazagan has a bay protected by the land against all dangerous winds, and is he only harbor on the coast possessing natural advantages which might make it a good port of the second class. The Portuguese founded an establishment here in 1506, but abandoned it in 1769. The country back of Mogadore is composed of hills of moving sand, and the place would have no existence but for the will of the sovereign. It was founded in 1760 by Sidi Mohammed, who closed Agadir, the port of Sus, once the best and most important in the empire, from fear that the inhabitants, enriched by foreign commerce, would assert their independence. There are a few smaller and unimportant ports at the mouths of rivers. - The interior is divided into two great slopes by the Atlas mountains, which traverse it from N. E. to S. W. The chain is composed of several parallel ranges, connected with each other, and several separate lesser chains, preserving generally the same parallelism, divide the country between the main range and the Atlantic into fertile valleys and plains.
On the Mediterranean coast a maritime range, called Er-Rif, from 2,500 to 3,500 ft. high, extends from Nemours in Algeria to the strait of Gibraltar; and there are also several chains running to the coast at right angles to the main range. Of the inferior chains on the southeast but little is known. The main range of the Atlas contains some of the most elevated peaks in N. Africa, many of which are covered with snow the greater part of the year. Miltzin, a peak about 30 m. S. E. of Morocco, is 11,500 ft. high. From all these mountains flow numerous streams, to which the natives give the general name of wed or wad. None of them are navigable, and many disappear in summer in the sands of the desert. Most of them change their names several times during their course. The principal rivers of the N. W. slope are the Lucos, Sebu, Bure-krag, Umm er-Rebiah, and the Tensift, all of which empty into the Atlantic; those of the S. E. slope are the Muluia, which falls into the Mediterranean, the Ghir, which is lost in the desert, and the Draa, Nun, and Sus, which empty into the Atlantic. All the rivers are rapid, and in spring and summer the larger ones cannot be forded with safety. - Little is known of the geology of Morocco, but gneiss is supposed to be the principal formation in the Atlas. Marbles of different kinds are found, one of which is as white as Carrara marble.
It is probable that the celebrated Numidian marbles of the Roman writers came from the Atlas. Gold in quartz veins is also found in these mountains, and galena rich in silver in the metamorphic rock in different parts of the country. Copper, iron, tin, nickel, cobalt, and antimony are abundant in Sus. At the foot of Jebel Hadyd, 15 or 16 m. N. E. of Mogadore, are numerous traces of ancient iron mines, which are supposed to have been worked by the Carthaginians. The ore found there is fine and rich. Sulphur, rock salt, and nitre are found in various places; and there are numerous mineral springs, of which the hydro-sulphurous springs of Mulai Yakub near Fez are said to cure cutaneous affections and scrofula. - On the great slope N. W. of the Atlas range the climate is temperate and delightful. A refreshing sea breeze prevails during the greater part of the year, and the hot winds from the desert are intercepted by the mountains. On the plain of the city of Morocco it is hot in summer, but the thermometer seldom rises above 95°, and in winter it seldom falls below 40°. The mean annual temperature is about 64°. Snow never falls there, but the winds from the glaciers of the Atlas occasionally make the nights very cold.
At Mogadore the extreme fluctuation of the thermometer does not exceed 35°; the annual rainfall averages 21 inches. The year is divided into a wet and a dry season; during the former, from November to March, showers are frequent; but during the other part of the year rain seldom falls. Toward the south there is less rain; and on the S. E. side of the mountains our knowledge of the climate is very imperfect, but extremes of heat and cold are supposed to prevail, and rain to be entirely wanting. - The Atlas mountains are clothed with luxuriant forests, in which are found the live oak, the cork oak, and the oak with edible acorns; the Aleppo pine, cedar of Lebanon, spruce, locust, and juniper; the thuja, which produces sandarach, the euphorbia, and other valuable gum trees; and in Sus flourishes the argan, the seeds of whose fruit produce a valuable oil, much used by the natives. The principal fruits are the date palm, olive, orange, grape, citron, banana, fig, almond, and pomegranate; but all the other fruits of southern Europe and northern Africa, and many of those of more tropical climes, grow in perfection.
Among the wild plants of the southern provinces are the caper, the archil, the dagmuz or tikiut with a juice like honey, and the fernun or talelt, which also furnishes a sweet milky juice. Agriculture is in a very primitive state, and but a very small part of the arable land is cultivated. The annual production is scarcely sufficient to supply the wants of the people, and when the harvests fail famine ensues. Yet Morocco might become, under an enlightened government, one of the most productive regions of the world. Wheat, barley, maize, millet (durra), and other cereals grow to perfection, but barley is the principal grain; cotton does well, and rice and sugar cane would succeed if properly cultivated; flax, hemp, and tobacco are raised to a limited extent; and beans, peas, lentils, sesamum, saffron, canary grass, and in some parts a few turnips, are cultivated in sufficient quantities to supply the inhabitants. Indigo, cochineal, and silk could be raised with success, and some parts of the Atlas seem to be well adapted for coffee. - Of wild animals, the lion and the panther are found in the forests and valleys of the Atlas, and monkeys in the wooded mountains; in the level country the hyaena, jackal, and wild boar abound; and in the Sahara plains the ostrich, gazelle, and several other species of antelopes Among the serpents are the ceraste, or horned viper, and a black snake called the butka, which is 6 or 7 ft. long and very venomous.
Inoffensive serpents are numerous, and are domesticated in some places, particularly in Morocco, where they are scrupulously respected in the houses. Scorpions, lizards, and the chameleon abound, and the locust and a great variety of other insects of all colors, forms, and natures infest many parts of the country. Among the birds are the stork, flamingo, and many kinds of small game. The domestic animals are numerous, and the wealth of many of the tribes consists entirely in their flocks and herds. Horses, mules, asses, camels, cattle, sheep, and goats abound, but the pastoral art is in almost as primitive a state as agriculture. The small spirited Barbary horses are still raided, but the sultan's prerogative of taking the best for the use of his army wherever he can rind them is a serious check on this industry. Their export, as well as that of horned cattle, is prohibited; but a few thousand of the latter are permitted to be shipped yearly for the use of the English garrison at Gibraltar. The sheep are much larger than the European varieties, and have broad tails loaded with fat, often weighing from 30 to 50 lbs. The wool is of tine quality and almost invariably white. The goats furnish the skins from which the celebrated morocco leather is made.
Poultry abounds, and the rivers and waters of the coast are full of fish. - The inhabitants may be divided into live races. Berbers, Arabs, Moors, Jews, and negroes. The Berbers, who are the aborigines, occupy the Atlas and lesser mountain ranges. They are a tine race physically, are distinguished for courage, resolution, and temperature, and make good warriors and hunt-ers. They are more laborious and persevering than the Arabs, and follow agriculture rather than pastoral pursuits. They are the best masons in the country, and most of their houses are built of stone. The Arabs, who compose the greater part of the rural population in the plains and in the valleys near the coast, are in general the descendants of the Mohammedan invaiders. They also are a fine race physically, but they arc bra-arts and fanatics, and jealous in disposition; are incapable of supporting prosperity, and are often embroiled with the government They live in tents, and are mostly agricultural laborers and shepherds. The Moors are a hybrid race, the greater part of them being descendants of those who were driven from Spain. They inhabit the cities and towns and are generally effeminate, intriguing and given to pleasure and idleness. In youth they are slender, but become very corpulent in later life.
They are more polished in their manner than the Arabs, but less social. Many of them hold official positions, and a large part of the commerce is in their hands. The Jews chiefly inhabit the cities, although some are found among the Berbers, and a few even in the Sahara at Wad Nun and at Akka. They are more ignorant than their brethren in other countries, but are shrewd, and enterprising, and many of them become rich, as they are the sole dealers in bullion. Most of them are engaged in commerce. The negroes are slaves or descendants of slaves imported from Soodan and other parts of central Africa. As there is no prejudice against color in Morocco, their descendants are of all shades of complexion, and most of the sherifs and principal officials are mulattoes. Many of them become free when converted to Islamism, and are then enrolled in the hokhary or body guard of the sultan. They are intelligent and docile, but more stubborn and more malicious than the Moors and Arabs. In general the people of Morocco are barbarous and fierce, but not ferocious or bloodthirsty as they have sometimes been represented. The vendetta is customary among them, but they do not assassinate strangers and travellers. Theft is seldom accompanied by murder, except in case of prolonged resistance.
Craig, a late English traveller, says the rarity of crime is remarkable. The total population has been estimated from 3,000,000 to 15,000,000. Reaumier, who visited Morocco in 1866, thinks the latter number the more probable; but according to Craig, the population, which at the beginning of the century, by a valuation considerably exaggerated, was estimated at 14,000,000, does not now exceed 4,000,000. The depopulation is still going on, and in the seaport towns alone has there been any development in the past few years. - The chief languages spoken are the Berber and the Arabic. In the south a modified form of the Berber is called Shellooh. The Arabic is but a gross dialect of the language of the Koran, and the pronunciation differs in the different provinces. The Jews speak an almost unintelligible Arabic jargon, and those of Tetuan, Tangier, and El-Araish an idiom of Spanish that is almost as bad. The negroes speak the Arabic with a pronunciation peculiar to themselves; many of them preserve also their native Mandingo and Bambara tongues. The dominant religion is Mohammedanism of the Sunnite division and Malekite sect. The Berbers know generally only the profession of faith of the Koran, and follow blindly the teachings of the marabouts who govern them.
The negroes make sincere converts to Islamism, but are much addicted to the practice of magic. The Jews belong to the Sepharadio (peninsular or western, improperly called Portuguese) division of their race, and follow the Talmud as interpreted by their rabbis to the letter. Christianity is now tolerated. Education is at a low ebb. In Fez only are there any remains of the ancient universities. Young men destined to letters, law, or the service of religion are instructed there in grammar and Arab poetry, and in Mussulman law and theology. Elsewhere youth are taught little more than to recite passages of the Koran. The once famous libraries of Fez and Morocco have disappeared, and the empirical use of a few simples and the practice of immoderate bleeding and cauterization with fire are all that remains of the medicine of Avenzoar and Averrhoes. Printing is unknown, and the architectural skill once characteristic of the race is now but a tradition. - Manufacturing industry is almost as degenerate. The most remarkable products are the beautiful and delicate tissues of wool and silk, woven by hand at Fez; the embroideries on velvet and leather; the famous morocco leather, now almost entirely superseded in Europe by the products of the Marseilles tanneries; the carpets and rugs of Rabat and Sale; arms, and silver and gold work.
Most of the cities contain tanneries where morocco of different colors is produced, the red and the yellow being of particular excellence. The dyers use cochineal, ralcaut, and pomegranate skins. The French introduced fuchsine, and for a time it superseded other red dyes, but its use was finally prohibited. At Fez are made and exported large numbers of the red caps which bear the name of that city. Their fine color is produced by a dye made from a berry found in the vicinity. Fez and Tetuan also manufacture bricks, which are sent to all the cities of Morocco, but not in large numbers, for they are used only in the houses of the rich. The best arms are made in Morocco and Tetuan. Jewelry and work in silver and copper are mostly in the hands of the Jews. - The maritime commerce is wholly carried on by foreigners. No vestiges remain of the famous Barbary corsairs that once scoured the Mediterranean, and Morocco now has no ship capable of making sail, and no sailor able to manage one. In 1871, 1,307 ships, of the total tonnage of 201,367, entered the eight free ports of Morocco. The entries at the several ports were as follows: Tetuan 214, Tangier 461, El-Araish 65, Rabat 24, Casablanca 168, Maza-gan 224, Saffy 56, and Mogadore 95. Of these, 617 were English, 172 French, 362 Spanish, 142 Portuguese, and 14 of other nations.
The total value of the exports for 1871 was $3,906,-000; imports, $4,566,000, The principal exports are goat skins, wool, grain, olive oil, gum, wax, and almonds; the principal imports are Manchester goods, silver bullion, hardware, tea, and sugar. The inland traffic is inconsiderable, as there are no roads except in the vicinity of the towns, and few of the rivers have bridges; but there is a large trade with central Africa and with the East by caravans. The southern trade is carried on through Tafilet, and the caravans, which number sometimes from 15,000 to 20,000 camels, go as far as Tim-buctoo, where they meet the merchants from further south and exchange products. The principal articles exported by this route are woollen cloths and hailes (mantles), Turkish daggers, looking glasses, salt, and tobacco; which are bartered for ivory, gold dust, os-trich feathers, gums, malagheta or Guinea pepper, asafcetida, incense, and slaves. The trade with the East is carried on by one large caravan yearly, which assembles at Fez about seven months before the great festival at Mecca, and occupies the intervening time in dealing with the countries through which it passes.
This caravan, which is much larger than those going south, carries skins and fine leather, woollen cloths and carpets, cochineal, indigo, and ostrich feathers; and brings back Persian silks and India goods, Egyptian cotton and raw silk, spices, perfumes, etc. - The sultanate of Morocco consists nominally of the former kingdoms of Fez and Morocco, of Sus, of the oasis of Tafilet, and of several tribes S. E. of the Atlas; but while the sultan, in his spiritual character of emir of the believers, is venerated by all the Mohammedans of the west, his temporal authority extends practically only over the cities and the plains. About two thirds of the whole country, including the Atlas, a large part of Sus, and, with the exception of Tafilet, all the S. slope of the Atlas from Wad-Ghir to the ocean, ought to be considered as politically independent. The sultanate is divided into 28 provinces, in each of which are from 2 to 15 small tribes, which are subdivided in the plains into dicars, or movable collections of tents, and in the mountains into tchvrs, or hamlets and villages in which the dwellings are permanently attached to the soil. Each province has its marabouts, sheikhs, and notables, who united form a council.
In the semi-independent provinces this is called ait arlain, and it affects to govern according to the precepts of the Koran. In those belonging properly to the sultan each province has one or several Tcaids or governors, who administer the government as they please, on condition of keeping communication safe, paying the imposts, furnishing their contingent of men and horses for the army, and sending to the sultan at each great festival as large a present of money as possible. The kaids are assisted by sheikhs chosen by themselves, who act directly upon the chiefs of dwars and tchurs. The cities are governed by a kaid, who is amenable to the sultan. Under him are a cadi or minister of public worship and of justice; a mohtasseb or chief of police; a nadher or keeper of the property of the mosques; and the omena or administrators of the customs and the property of the state. All the cities are enclosed by-walls, and the gates are shut at night. The streets have no names, and the houses no numbers, but the division into quarters is distinct, and the inhabitants of each are held responsible as a body for the maintenance of order.
The chief interior cities, in the order of impor-tanoe are as follows: Fez, Morocco, Meqninez, Azimur. Tarudant, Theza, Ujda, Alcazar el-Ke-bir, Wezzan, Sofron, Dunnet, and Tafilet or Tafilelt. The capitals are Fez and Morocco, in each of which the sultan resides for two or three years at a time. Meqninez is inhabited chiefly by the families of the body guard. Wezzan is the grand centre of the brotherhood of the Mulai Thaieb, and is peopled only by the descendants of the founder of this order in Algeria and Morocco. Tarudant is the capital of Sus. The army proper consists of about 80,000 cavalry, composed of the body guard and the military tribes of Fez, the Sherarda, Sherarga, Ondaya, and a part of the Gherwan, who follow from father to son the military profession (mekhazni). The greater part of these troops always accompany the sultan; the rest are detached in companies according to need. Permanent garrisons, varying from 1000 to 300 in number, are stationed only at Fez, Marve, Rabat. Ujda, and in the Rif. In the other towns there are generally from 20 to 60 soldiers at the disposition of the authorities. The military enjoy great privileges and live at their ease.
They are armed with sabres and long flint-lock guns, and wear no other distinctive uniform than the Fez cap, which is worn by all state officials. The late sultan Sidi Mohammed tried to form an infantry corps, but the discipline was not compatible with the character and habits of the people, and the 3,500 or 4,000 men whom he raised were mostly renegades and foreigners. The government has mints at Fez, Morocco, and Rabat, but they do little more than convert French crowns into the money of the country. - The Mauritania of the ancients comprised Morocco and a part of Algiers. (See Mauritania.) When the Arabs completed their conquest of northern Africa (698-709) the Moors adopted their religion and customs. No general government was organized till about 787, when Edris ibn Abdallah, a descendant of Mo-hammed, founded the kingdom of Fez. His son and successor, Edris ibn Edris, founded the city of Fez about 807. In the 11th century the warlike sect of the Al-Murabathin or Almoravides arose among the independent tribes in the deserts of the south, and about 1058 their chief Ahubekr ibn Omar was proclaimed emir of all Morocco. In 1070 he crowed the mountains, and in 1072 founded the city of Morocco. The dynasty of the Almoravides was succeeded by those of the Al-rnohad.s. the Beni Merinas, and the El-Wa-tasi. In 1561 the descendants of Sherif Hoseir founded a new dynasty, which in the beginning of the 17th century had extended its sway over all Morocco and as far S. as Tirnbuc-too. In 1578 King Sebastian of Portugal invaded the country, but was defeated at Alcazar and probably killed.
On the death of Hatned Sherif al-Mansour, his empire was divided among his five sons, which led to the establishment in 1648 of a new dynasty by Muley Sherif el-Fileli, king of Tafilet, which still continues on the throne. In 1787 the sultan made a treaty of peace and friendship with the United States, and in 1836 a second treaty of peace and commerce, to remain in force for 50 years. In 1814 the slavery of Christians was abolished, and in 1817 the sultan disarmed his marine and prohibited piracy. In 1844, during the reign of Abderrahman (1823-59), the Moors took up arms to aid Abd-el-Kader against the French, and the prince de Joinville bombarded Tangier and took possession of Mo-gadore, which was given up on the conclusion of peace. The French also bombarded Sale in 1851, in retaliation for the plunder of a ship on the coast. In 1859 the French made an incursion from Algeria into Morocco in revenge for depredations on their frontiers, and in the same year Spain declared war in retaliation for attacks on her commerce by the Rif pirates. On Feb. 6, 1860, Tetuan surrendered after a well contested battle (Feb. 4), and in April a treaty of peace was signed, which guaranteed to Spain 400,000,000 reals for the expenses of the war.
In the same year a Moroccan ambassador was sent to London, the first since the time of Charles II., and in 1861 the British government gave a guarantee for a loan of £426,000 to the sultan to meet his engagements with Spain. In March, April, and May, 1870, a French detachment from Algeria under Gen. Wimpffen made a tour of exploration through S. E. Morocco, and reported favorably on the climate, water, etc. In September, 1871, an insurrection of Berbers broke out in Morocco, and the Spanish fortifications at Melilla were attacked; but the guns of the besiegers were dismounted by the fire from the citadel. The sultan Sidi Mohammed, who succeeded his father Abderrahman in 1859, died Sept. 20, 1873, and his son Muley Hassan was proclaimed Sept. 25.