Interesting facts about “Africa”
Interesting facts about “Africa”
Africa from Europe is separated by a narrow Strait of Gibraltar, whose width is 14 km. In ancient times this strait was called the Hercules pillars. Later, the Arabs who conquered Spain named the Jebel Tal Garik Strait, the Tarika mountain, named after an Arab commander who in 711 crossed the strait at the head of the first Muslim conquerors. Since then, the distorted Arabic name Gibraltar has been preserved in Europe. Africa from the Arabian Peninsula is separated by the Bab-el-Mandeb Strait, in which many ships were killed because of the difficult conditions of navigation. Therefore, the Arabs gave the strait a name meaning “gate of tears.” In the west of Africa there is a country of Guinea and the Gulf of Guinea. This name was given by Berbers, who live in the Sahara Desert and speak a language close to Arabic. “Guinea” means – dumb. So the Berbers called their southern black neighbors who did not speak their language. The strait separating the island
of Madagascar from Africa is the longest in the world. Its length is over 1700 km. It is also one of the widest straits of the world – 422 km. The largest diamond deposits are in Africa. Here, about 95% of all diamonds of the world are mined. The largest of the diamonds “Cullinai” was found in 1905 and had a mass of 3106 carats, or 621.2 g. The largest number of sunny days on the planet during the year is in the Sahara desert: the sun shines there 4,300 hours a year. The second in the world and the first in Africa in terms of fullness is the Congo River. Every second the Congo takes out 46,000 m3 of water to the Atlantic Ocean, which desalinate the waters of the Atlantic Ocean 75 km from the mouth of the river. It is the only river in the world that crosses the equator twice. Tanganyika is the largest freshwater lake in the world. It is located in a tectonic hollow in East Africa at an altitude of 773 m above sea level. Tanganyika is the deepest lake in Africa. The banana, surprisingly, is a grass with a thick rhizome, from which leaves closely adjoining each other, forming a stem 15 m high. The leaves
reach a length of 4 m and a width of 90 cm. After fruiting, the stem dies off, and the root system gives new shoots. Full fruit ripening lasts 3-4 months. Bananas are consumed fresh and dried, from them are prepared canned food, marmalade, syrup, wine, banana flour. Some varieties go to feed livestock, of which fabrics are made. In the equatorial belt of Africa, a breadfruit is common. Its fruit, the size of a human head, containing an amyloid flesh, grows on the trunk. This flesh is eaten in boiled or fried form or makes from it a dough, from which pancakes are baked. Perhaps that’s why the tree is called bread. The largest among the monkeys is the gorilla. The weight of adult males is 250 kg, and the height is more than 2 m. Gorilla is dangerous for humans. Defending his cubs, the gorilla with strong jaws is able to snack even a gun. Recently, the number of these monkeys has decreased due to poaching. Hunters kill old gorillas, and their cubs are sold to zoos. The champion but I run among the animals is a cheetah – a predator of the African savannah. He develops a speed of up to 110 km / h, but can not run at such a speed of more than 500 m. In the past, cheetahs were tamed, trained and used for hunting. Now this animal is on the verge of extinction and is listed in the international Red Data Book. The highest people on this planet are the African Tutsi tribe. The average height of an adult male is 1 m 85 cm. And the smallest are African pygmies living in Equatorial Africa. Their growth does not exceed 140 cm for men, women – even lower. In Greek, the word “pygmy” means a measure of length less than half a meter. First described pygmies in the second half of the XIX century. Russian traveler Vasily Junker, when he served for two years this group of peoples.