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    Re: Portuguese shipwreck question
    From: Frank Reed
    Date: 2009 Oct 29, 16:21 -0700

    John H, you wrote:
    "One in particular is "Sigdemessah". This is north of "Gana", and south of 
    "Corduba", and roughly at the same longitude."
    Very likely, that's an alternative spelling for Sijilmasa. Sijilmasa was "up 
    until the 14th century, [...] the terminus for the western Trans-Sahara trade 
    route, one of the most important trade centres in the Maghreb during the 
    'Golden Age' of the Berber dynasties." quoting the Wikipedia article here 
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sijilmasa. It had been visited several times by 
    Ibn Battuta during his travels and because of its significance for 
    trans-Saharan trade, it would have been widely known in Europe. It's in about 
    the same longitude as Ghana and Cordoba as required. 
    Ocean navigation spelled the end of the trans-Saharan trade routes. The wealth 
    of those trade entrepots was good for them, but bad for business and bound to 
    be undone as soon as navigational science found a way to sail around them.
    PS: Regarding the Tafilalt oasis which is associated with Sijilmasa, according 
    an old edition of the Encyclopedia Britannica, Tafilalt "is celebrated for 
    its large and luscious dates". ...I once had a large and luscious date.
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