Algeria, a division of N. Africa, formerly the Turkish pashalic of Algiers, but since 1831 included in the foreign dominions of France, bounded N. by the Mediterranean, E. by Tunis, W. by Morocco, S. by the Great Sahara. It is, in the main, situated between lat. 32° and 37° N., and lon. 2° W. and 9° E. The boundaries are not well defined, as large portions of the border districts are claimed both by the French government and the nomadic tribes which inhabit them. An official statement in 1850 estimated the area at 150,568 sq. m., distributed as follows among the three provinces: Algiers, 43,627 sq. m.; Oran, 39,375; Constan-tine, 67,566. Later unofficial calculations make it as high as 258,317 sq. m. (Algiers, 39,120; Oran, 111,831; Constantino, 107,366). The Atlas mountains constitute an important physical feature in the country. The Little Atlas runs along the rocky coast, and varies from 3,000 to near 7,000 ft. in height; while in the south the Greater Atlas reaches, or even exceeds, in some points an elevation of 8,000 ft. Between the Little and the Greater Atlas extends a plateau called the Tell (highlands), varying in height from 1,900 to 3,600 ft., and containing a large number of salt lakes, which dry up during the summer months.

Long, winding defiles lead S. from the Greater Atlas into the Algerian Sahara. This desert, occupying more than half the country, contains many fertile oases and the large salt lake of Melrir, which receives a number of small rivers. The number of oases has been increased by means of artesian wells dug by order of the French government. The principal plain of the country, that of Metid-jah, belongs to the region of the Little Atlas. The Greater Atlas forms the watershed of the country. The principal river is the Shelliff, which has a tortuous course of about 200 m. and flows into the Mediterranean. The rivers which flow from the S. side of the Greater Atlas lose themselves in the desert, and none are navigable. They are nearly dried up in the summer, but overflow a considerable extent of country in the spring and fertilize the soil. - The climate is generally warm, but the heat is rarely oppressive except under the prevalence of the simoom or hot wind from the Sahara, when the temperature ranges as high as 110°. A large portion of the country is healthy, even for Europeans; but in the marshy districts the foreign-born population generally succumb to fevers. Ophthalmia and cutaneous diseases are common.

On the limits of the desert the soil is arid and sandy, but between the mountain districts it is fertile, and especially so in the neighborhood of the streams. Grain crops of all kinds, European and tropical fruits, flowers, and particularly roses, of remarkable beauty, and a species of sugar cane, said to be the largest and most productive of any known species, grow in Algeria. Domestic animals of every variety are numerous. The horses are excellent; the asses are of line growth and much used for riding. The camel and drome-dary of Algeria are very superior. The merino sheep is indigenous. The Numidian lion, the panther and leopard, ostriches, serpents, scorpions, and many venomous reptiles are abundant. - The chief towns are Algiers, the capital (pop. in 1866, 52,614), Constantine (35,417), and Oran (34,058). Near Bona, on the northeastern coast, are the coral fisheries, frequented by the fishers from France and Italy. Bougiah is on the gulf of the same name. On the coast, between Algiers and Oran, are Koleah, Cher-chell (the ancient CAesarea, the residence of Juba), and Mostaganem. Tlemcen, once the residence of Abd-el-Kader, is situated in a fertile country, near the Moroccan border; the ancient city was destroyed by fire in 1670, and the modern town was almost destroyed by the French. Other towns of the interior are Bli-dah, Medeah, and Milianah, S. and S. W. of the capital.

South of the Greater Atlas is the Zaab, the ancient GAetulia. The chief place is Biscara; the Biscareens are a peaceful race, much liked in the northern ports as servants and porters. There are many remains of antiquity in the interior, especially in the province of Constantine, among others those of the ancient city of Lambessa, with remains of the city gates, part of an amphitheatre, and a mausoleum supported by Corinthian pillars. - The total population in 1866 was 2,921,246, of whom 217,990 were of European descent. Among the latter there were 122,119 Frenchmen, 58,510 Spaniards, 16,655 Italians, 10,627 Maltese, 5,436 Germans, and 4,643 of other nationalities; 72,508 were born in Algeria. In 1831 the European population was 3,228; in 1836, 14,-560; in 1841, 35,727; in 1846, 99,801; in 1851 the number of deaths (60,678) exceeded the births (44,900) by 16,000. Among the children of the Europeans the mortality is even greater than among the adults. The Moorish population in the cities is likewise decreasing; only the Jews show a steady increase. The general result of the efforts for colonization is trilling. From 1831 to 1866 the government had ceded to European settlers no more than 222,269 hectares.

For several years the number of Europeans leaving the country was almost as large as the number of new arrivals. Thus in 1856, 30,460 returned to Europe, and only 39,239 arrived. The republican government hoped for an improvement of this state of affairs from a limitation of the military and an enlargement of the civil authority of the country; and in order to induce the malcontent inhabitants of the districts ceded in 1871 to Germany to emigrate to Algeria, it placed by a decree of June 21, 1871, 100,000 hectares of the best government lands at their disposal. The Berbers or Kabyles, who call themselves Mazidh (noble), are believed to have been the aboriginal inhabitants, the Numidians and GAetulians of antiquity. Arabs, the descendants of the Mussulman invaders, Moors, Turks, Kulughs, Jews, and negroes, and lastly the French and other European Christians, form the rest of the population. The Kabyles are an industrious race, living in regular villages, excellent cultivators, and working in mines, in metals, and in coarse woollen and cotton factories. They make gunpowder and soap, gather honey and wax, and supply the towns with poultry, fruit, and other provisions. The Arabs follow a nomadic life, shifting their camps from place to place.