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Upper and Lower Nigeria

A colony of British East Africa extending from the Gulf of Guinea to Lake Chad (from 4° 30' to 7°N. lat., and from 5° 30' to 8° 30' E. long.), is bounded on the north and west by French Sudan, on the south-west by the English colony of Lagos, on the south by the Atlantic, on the east by German Kamerun. It derives its name from the River Niger, flowing through it. The Niger, French from its source in the Guinean Sudan to the frontier of Sierra Leone and Liberia, enters Nigeria above Ilo, receives the Sokoto River at Gomba, and the Benue at Lokodja, the chief tributaries in English territory. Though the establishment of the English dates only from 1879, numerous explorers had long before reconnoitred the river and the neighbouring country. Among the most famous were Mungo Park (1795-1805), Clapperton (1822), René Caillé (1825), Lander, Barth, Mage, and recently the French officers Galliéni, Mizon, Hourst, and Lenfant. In 1879, on the initiative of Sir George Goldie, the English societies established in the region purchased all the French and foreign trading stations of Lower Niger and in 1885 obtained a royal charter which constituted them the "Royal Company of the Niger". The Royal Company developed rapidly and acquired immense territories, often at the cost of bloodshed. The monopoly of navigation which it claimed to exercise, contrary to the stipulations of the General Act of Berlin, its opposition to the undertakings of France and Germany, its encroachments on neighbouring territories, aroused numerous diplomatic quarrels which finally brought about the revocation of its privileges (1 Jan., 1900). It then became a simple commercial company with enormous territorial possessions; the conquered lands, reunited to the old Protectorate of the Niger Coast organized in 1884, constituted the British colony of Nigeria. France, however, retained two colonies at Badjibo-Arenberg and at Forcados; navigation was free to all.

Politically Nigeria is divided into two provinces, Southern or Lower Nigeria, Northern or Upper Nigeria, separated by the parallel which passes through Ida. Each division is governed by a high commissioner named directly by the Crown. Northern Nigeria with an area of over 123,400 square miles is as yet only partly settled, and has nine constituted provinces. The ancient capital, Gebha, is now replaced by Wushishi on the Kaduna. The chief cities are Lokodja Ilo, Yola, Gando, Sokoto, Kano, etc. Kano, situated two hundred miles to the north, is a remarkable city and one of the largest markets of the whole world. For more than a thousand years the metropolis of East Africa, Kano contains about fifty thousand inhabitants, is surrounded by walls built of hardened clay from twenty to thirty ft. high and fifteen miles in circumference. Every year more than two million natives go to Kano to exchange their agricultural products or their merchandise. The chief articles of commerce are camels, cattle, ivory, sugar, ostrich plumes, and kola nuts. Kano is also a great industrial centre, renowned for its hides and its cotton materials; sorghum and many kinds of vegetables and cereals are cultivated. The natives are very good workmen, especially in the cultivation of the fields. Although nominally subject to England, some chiefs, or sultans, have remained almost independent, for instance those of Sokoto and Nupe. English money, however, has circulated everywhere and three-penny pieces are very popular. Northern Nigeria has a population of about fifteen million inhabitants, divided into several tribes, each speaking its own tongue, the chief of which are the Yorubas, the Nupes, the Haussas, and the Igbiras. English is the official language of the administration.

Constantly pressing to the south, Islam has penetrated as far as the markets of the Lower Niger, and carries on a vigorous proselytism, aided by the representatives of the English Government. Mussulman chiefs and instructors are often appointed for the fetishistic population. Powerful English Protestant missions have unsuccessfully endeavoured to gain a foothold. Catholic missionaries explored a portion of these same regions as early as 1883, but only now have they undertaken permanent establishments. Nigeria is divided into two prefectures Apostolic ; that of the Upper Niger is confided to the Society of African Missions of Lyons (1884), and that of the Lower Niger to the Fathers of the Holy Ghost (1889). The first comprises all the territory west of the Niger from Forcados and north of the Benue to Yola. Its limits were only definitively constituted by the decrees of 15 January and 10 May, 1894. The prefect Apostolic resides at Lokodja. The mission is chiefly developed in the more accessible part of Southern Nigeria, where Islam is still almost a stranger. Its chief posts, besides Lokodja, are Assaba, Ila, Ibsélé, Ibi, Idu, etc. The twenty missionaries are assisted by the Religious of the Queen of the Apostles (Lyons); in 1910 there were about 1500 Catholics and an equal number of catechumens. The Prefecture Apostolic of the Lower Niger comprises all the country situated between the Niger, the Benue, and the western frontier of German Kamerun. Less extensive than that of the Upper Niger, its population is much more dense, almost wholly fetishistic, and even cannibal. Towns of five, ten, and twenty thousand inhabitants are not rare; the population is chiefly agricultural, cultivating the banana and the yam. In the delta and on Cross River the palm oil harvest is the object of an active commerce. Several tribes are crowded into these fertile districts; the Ibo, Nri, Munchis, Ibibio, Ibani, Ibeno, Efik, Akwa, Aro, etc. Their religion is fetishism, with ridiculous and cruel practices often admitting of human sacrifices, exacted by the ju-ju (a corruption of the native word egugu ), a fetish which is supposed to contain the spirit of an ancestor; but purer religious elements are found beneath all these superstitions, belief in God, the survival of the soul, distinction between good and evil, etc.

The Mussulmans are located in important centres such as the market of Onitcha. Moreover, wherever the English Government employs Haussas as militia the latter carry on an active propaganda, and where they are, a movement towards Islam is discernible. This is the case at Calabar, Lagos, Freetown, and numerous points in the interior and on the coast. English Protestant missions have long since penetrated into this country and have expended, not without results, enormous sums for propaganda. Native churches with pastors and bishops have even been organized on the Niger, constituting what is called the native pastorate. At Calabar the United Presbyterian Church dates from 1846, strongly established throughout the country. In 1885 the Catholic missionaries of Gabon established themselves at Onitcha, the centre of the Ibo country and a city of twenty thousand inhabitants. Several native kings, among them the King of Onitcha, have been converted, numerous schools have been organized, towns and villages everywhere have asked for missionaries, or lacking them, for catechists. Until 1903 no establishment could be made at Calabar, the seat of the Government and the most important commercial centre of Southern Nigeria, but once founded the Catholic mission became very popular, adherents came in crowds, the schools were filled to overflowing. There is need of labourers and resources for the immense harvest. The Fathers of the Holy Ghost are seconded in their efforts by the Sisters of St. Joseph of Cluny. The progress of evangelization seems to necessitate in the near future the division of the mission into two prefectures, one of which will have its centre at Onitcha, the other at Calabar.

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Ub 8

Ubaghs, Casimir

Born at Bergélez-Fauquemont, 26 November, 1800; died at Louvain, 15 February, 1875, was for ...

Ubaldus, Saint

Confessor, Bishop of Gubbio, born of noble parents at Gubbio, Umbria, Italy, towards the ...

Ubanghi

(UPPER FRENCH CONGO.) Vicariate Apostolic ; formerly part of the Vicariate of French Congo, ...

Ubanghi, Belgian

In Belgian Congo, separated on 7 April, 1911, from the Vicariate of the Belgian Congo and ...

Ubanghi-Chari

Prefecture Apostolic in Equatorial Africa, lies west of the Bahr-el-Ghazal territory and south ...

Uberaba

(DE UBERABA.) Suffragan diocese of Marianna, in Brazil, created by the Consistorial ...

Ubertino of Casale

Leader of the Spirituals, born at Casale of Vercelli, 1259; died about 1330. He assumed the ...

Ubiquitarians

Also called Ubiquists , a Protestant sect started at the Lutheran synod of Stuttgart, 19 ...

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Uc 2

Ucayali

(SAN FRANCISCO DE UCAYALI.) Prefecture Apostolic in Peru. At the request of the Peruvian ...

Uccello

Painter, born at Florence, 1397; died there, 1475. His real name was Paolo di Dono, but from his ...

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Ud 1

Udine

(UTINENSIS) The city of Udine, the capital of a province and archdiocese in Friuli, northern ...

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Ug 2

Ugento

(UXENTIN) The city of Ugento, with its small harbour, is situated in the Province of Leece, in ...

Ughelli, Ferdinando

Historian, born at Florence, 21 March, 1595; died 19 May, 1670. Having entered the Cistercian ...

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Uh 1

Uhtred

(Also spelled: Uhtred or Owtred ), an English Benedictine theologian and writer, born at ...

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Uj 1

Ujejski, Cornelius

Polish poet, born at Beremiany, Galicia, 1823; died at Cholojewie, 1897. His father was a ...

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Ul 12

Ulenberg, Kaspar

Convert, theological writer and translator of the Bible , born at Lippstadt on the Lippe, ...

Ulfilas

(Also: Ulphilas ), apostle of the Goths, missionary, translator of the Bible , and inventor ...

Ullathorne, William Bernard

English Benedictine monk and bishop, b. at Pocklington, Yorkshire, 7 May, 1806; d. at Oscott, ...

Ullerston, Richard

Born in the Duchy of Lancaster, England ; d. in August or September, 1423. Having been ordained ...

Ulloa, Antoine de

Naval officer and scientist, born at Seville, Spain, 12 Jan., 1716; died near Cadiz, Spain, 5 ...

Ulloa, Francisco de

Died 1540. It is not known when he came to Mexico nor if he accompanied Hernan Cortés in ...

Ulrich of Bamberg

(Udalricus Babenbergensis), a cleric of the cathedral church of Bamberg, of whom nothing more ...

Ulrich of Richenthal

Chronicler of the Council of Constance , date of birth unknown; died about 1438. Ulrich was ...

Ulrich of Zell

(Wulderic; called also of Cluny, and of Ratisbon ), born at Ratisbon, at the beginning of 1029; ...

Ulrich, Saint

Bishop of Augsburg, born at Kyburg, Zurich, Switzerland, in 890; died at Augsburg, 4 July, ...

Ultan of Ardbracca

St. Ultan of Ardbraccan, Ireland, was the maternal uncle of St. Brigid, and collected a life of ...

Ultramontanism

A term used to denote integral and active Catholicism, because it recognizes as its spiritual ...

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Un 22

Unam Sanctam

(Latin the One Holy , i.e. Church ), the Bull on papal supremacy issued 18 November, 1302, ...

Unclean and Clean

The distinction between legal and ceremonial, as opposed to moral, cleanness and uncleanness ...

Unction, Extreme

A sacrament of the New Law instituted by Christ to give spiritual aid and comfort and perfect ...

Ungava

A Canadian territory lying north of the Province of Quebec, detached (1876) from the Great ...

Uniformity Acts

These statutes, passed at different times, were vain efforts to secure uniformity in public ...

Unigenitus

A celebrated Apostolic Constitution of Clement XI, condemning 101 propositions of Pasquier ...

Union of Brest

Brest -- in Russian, Brest-Litovski; in Polish, Brzesc; in the old chronicles, called Brestii, or ...

Union of Christendom

The Catholic Church is by far the largest, the most widespread, and the most ancient of ...

Unions of Prayer

A tendency to form unions of prayer among the faithful has recently manifested itself in the ...

Unitarians

A Liberal Protestant sect which holds as it distinctive tenet the belief in a uni-personal ...

Unitas Fratrum

(MORAVIAN BRETHREN, or UNITAS FRATRUM). DEFINITION AND DOCTRINAL POSITION "Bohemian Brethren" ...

United States of America, The

BOUNDARIES AND AREA On the east the boundary is formed by the St. Croix River and an arbitrary ...

Unitive Way

The word state is used in various senses by theologians and spiritual writers. It may be ...

Unity

The marks of the Church are certain unmistakeable signs, or distinctive characteristics which ...

Universalists

A Liberal Protestant sect -- found chiefly in North America -- whose distinctive tenet is the ...

Universals

The name refers on the one hand to the inclination towards uniformity ( uni-versus ) existing in ...

Universe

Universe (or "world") is here taken in the astronomical sense, in its narrower or wider ...

Universe, Relation of God to the

1. Essential Dependence of the Universe on God (Creation and Conservation) In developing the ...

Universities

The principal Catholic foundations have been treated in special articles; here the general ...

University College (Dublin)

A constitutional college of the National University of Ireland. By its charter, granted 2 Dec., ...

Unjust Aggressor

According to the accepted teaching of theologians, it is lawful, in the defense of life or limb, ...

Unyanyembe

Vicariate apostolic in German East Africa, separated from the Vicariate Apostolic of Nyanza ...

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Up 4

Upper Nile

Vicariate apostolic ; separated from the mission of Nyanza, 6 July, 1894, comprises the eastern ...

Upper Rhine

Ecclesiastical province; includes the Archdiocese of Freiburg and the suffragan Dioceses of ...

Upsala, Ancient See of

When St. Ansgar, the Apostle of the North, went to Sweden in 829 the Swedes were still heathen ...

Upsala, University of

The oldest and most celebrated university of Sweden. Even today the arrangement of its ...

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Ur 26

Uranopolis

A titular see of Asia Minor, suffragan of Ancyra in Galatia Prima. It is vainly sought in any ...

Urban I, Pope Saint

Reigned 222-30, date of birth unknown; died 23 May, 230. According to the "Liber Pontificalis," ...

Urban II, Pope Blessed

(Otho, Otto or Odo of Lagery), 1088-1099, born of a knightly family, at Châtillon-sur-Marne ...

Urban III, Pope

Reigned 1185-87, born at Milan ; died at Ferrara, 19 October, 1187. Uberto, of the noble ...

Urban IV, Pope

Reigned 1261-64 (Jacques Pantaléon), son of a French cobbler, born at Troyes, probably in ...

Urban V, Pope Blessed

Guillaume de Grimoard, born at Grisac in Languedoc, 1310; died at Avignon, 19 December, 1370. ...

Urban VI, Pope

Bartolomeo Prignano, the first Roman pope during the Western Schism, born at Naples, about ...

Urban VII, Pope

Giambattista Castagna, born at Rome, 4 Aug., 1521; elected pope, 15 September, 1590; died at ...

Urban VIII, Pope

Maffeo Barberini, born at Florence in April, 1568; elected pope, 6 August, 1623; died at Rome, 29 ...

Urbi et Orbi

The term Urbi et Orbi (which means "for the city and for the world") signifies that a papal ...

Urbino

(URBINATENSIS) Province of Pesaro and Urbino, Italy. The city of Urbino is situated on a ...

Urbs beata Jerusalem dicta pacis visio

The first line of a hymn of probably the seventh or eighth century, comprising eight stanzas ...

Urdaneta, Andrés

Augustinian, born at Villafranca, Guipúzcoa, Spain, 1498; died in the City of Mexico, ...

Urgel

(U RGELLENSIS ). Diocese in Spain, suffragan of Tarragona ; bounded on the N. by France ...

Urim and Thummim

The sacred lot by means of which the ancient Hebrews were wont to seek manifestations of the ...

Urmiah

A residential see in Chaldea, in the Province of Adherbaidjan, Persia. The primitive name of this ...

Urráburu, Juan José

Scholastic philosopher, born at Ceanuri, Biscay, 23 May, 1844; died at Burgos, 13 August, 1904. ...

Ursperger Chronicle

A history of the world in Latin that begins with the Assyrian King Ninius and extends to the year ...

Ursula of the Blessed Virgin, Society of the Sisters of Saint

Religious congregation of women founded in 1606 at Döle (then a Spanish possession), ...

Ursula, Saint, and the Eleven Thousand Virgins

The history of these celebrated virgins of Cologne rests on ten lines, and these are open to ...

Ursulines of Quebec, The

The Ursuline monastery of Quebec is the oldest institution of learning for women in North ...

Ursulines, The

A religious order founded by St. Angela de Merici for the sole purpose of educating young ...

Ursus, Saint

Patron of the principal church of Solothurn (Soleure) in Switzerland, honoured from very early ...

Urubamba

(MISIONES DE SANTO DOMINGO DE URUBAMBA Y MADRE DE DIOS) This prefecture apostolic was created ...

Uruguay

(REPUBLICA ORIENTAL DEL URUGUAY). The smallest independent state in South America, extending ...

Uruguayana

(URUGUAYANESIS) Diocese ; suffragan of Porto Alegre, Brazil. By a Decree dated 15 August, ...

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Us 4

Ushaw College

(College of St. Cuthbert) A combined college and seminary for the six dioceses that were ...

Usilla

A titular see of Byzacena in Africa. Nothing is known of the history of this city; it is ...

Usuard, Martyrology of

Usuard was a Benedictine monk of the Abbey of St-Germain-des-Prxs, Paris. He seems to have ...

Usury

In the article INTEREST we have reserved the question of the lawfulness of taking interest on ...

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Ut 8

Ut Queant Laxis Resonare Fibris

The first line of a hymn in honour of St. John the Baptist. The Roman Breviary divides it ...

Utah

Utah, the thirty-second state admitted to the Union, takes its name from an Indian tribe known ...

Uthina

A titular see of Africa Proconsularis, suffragan of Carthage. Uthina is mentioned by Ptolemy ...

Utica

A titular see in Africa Proconsularis. The city was founded by Tyrian colonists at the mouth ...

Utilitarianism

( Latin utilis , useful). Utilitarianism is a modern form of the Hedonistic ethical theory ...

Utopia

(Greek ou no or not, and topos place), a term used to designate a visionary or an ideally ...

Utraquism

The principal dogma, and one of the four articles, of the Calixtines or Hussites . It was first ...

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