Tanganyika Is An Island Of IslandsEastern Inner Africa, containing the Great Lakes and many rivers flowing into and out of these lakes, has been described as a long, irregular, oval-shaped elevation of mountain masses, spreading out in many places as vast plateau, and buttressed by far-reaching ridges, here and there rising into snow-clad peaks. Deep in the devices and depressions of this central mountain mass have gathered the great water-cisterns of the African lakes, which send forth their streams east and west, and north and south. These are the vitalising arteries sent forth from the heart of Africa. The fauna and flora of the heart of Africa also attest to the central characteristics of the region. On its shores may be found specimens of all the vegetable and animal families distributed over the continent. (1) Inner Africa is the womb and through its oval came the rest of Africa into life and existence and so also the rest of the world. The very heart of hearts, in the centre of the great central elevation of mountain heights, is Tanganyika. This lake is the shape of a long, deep water-chasm. At 418 miles long, Tanganyika is the longest lake on Earth. It is doubtless the product of great volcanic action because volcanic fires are still heaving and raging beneath the heart of Africa. This may be inferred from the many hot springs and steam jets in the region, and the frequent rumblings and tremors of the earth. (2) (3) The oval that holds the waters of Tanganyika is a deep crater that is fairly steep on the eastern side, and very steep on the western side.(4) This makes most of the lake's coastline inaccessible since it is composed of high sheer mountain walls that fall directly into the lake. (5) For long stretches, mile after mile of steep mountains rise sheer from the water alongside miles of forest, pebbly creeks and river-mouths half-covered with reeds and papyrus and populated by the hippopotamus and the crocodile. Dispersed throughout the lake are plenty of rocky, but livable, islands. (6)
References(1) Dickens, Charles, Conducted by, “The Liberty Of The Subject,” “All The Year Round, A Weekly Journal” From July 2,1892 to December 31, 1892, Third Series, Volume 8, Nos. 183 to 209, (Charles Dickens & Evans, Crystal Palace Press, London: 1892), p. 77-80/pdf 90-93.
(2) Ibid., p. 78/pdf 91.
(3) Dugard, Martin, “ The Explorers: A Story of Fearless Outcasts, Blundering Geniuses, and Impossible Success,” (Simon & Schuster, June 3, 2014), p. 154.
(4) Dickens, p. 78/pdf 91.
(5) New World Encyclopedia, “Lake Tanganyika,” Accessed 9/28/16.
(6) Dickens, p. 79/pdf 92.