CODAVASCAM to COFFEE
CODAVASCAM, n.p. A region with this puzzling name appears in the Map of Blaeu (c. 1650), and as Ryk van Codavascan in the Map of Bengal in Valentijn (vol. v.), to the E. of Chittagong. Wilford has some Wilfordian nonsense about it, connecting it with the [Greek Text] Tokosanna R. of Ptolemy, and with a Touasca n which he says is mentioned by the Portuguese writers (in such case a criminal mode of expression). The name was really that of a Mahommedan chief, hum Principe Mouro, grande Senhor, and Vassalo del Rey de Bengála. It was probably Khodabakhsh Khan. His territory must have been south of Chittagong, for one of his towns was Chacuriá, still known as Chakiria on the Chittagong and Arakan Road, in lat 21° 45. (See Barros, IV. ii. 8. and IV. ix. 1; and Couto, IV. iv. 10; also Correa, iii. 264266, and again as below:
1533.But in the city there was the Rumi whose foist had been seized by Dimião Bernaldes; being a soldier (lascarym) of the Kings, and seeing the present (offered by the Portuguese) he said: My lord, these are crafty robbers; they get into a country with their wares, and pretend to buy and sell, and make friendly gifts, whilst they go spying out the land and the people, and then come with an armed force to seize them, slaying and burning till they become masters of the land. And this Captain-Major is the same that was made prisoner and ill-used by Codavascão in Chatigão, and he is come to take vengeance for the ill that was done him.Correa, iii. 479.
COFFEE, s. Arab. kahwa, a word which appears to have been originally a term for wine.1 [So in the
Arab. Nights, ii. 158, where Burton gives the derivation as akhá, fastidire fecit, causing disinclination
for food. In old days the scrupulous called coffee kihwah to distinguish it from kahwah, wine.] It is
probable, therefore, that a somewhat similar word was twisted into this form by the usual propensity
to strive after meaning. Indeed, the derivation of the name has been plausibly traced to Kaffa, one of
those districts of the S. Abyssinian highlands (Enarea and Kaffa) which appear to have been the original
habitat of the Coffee plant (Coffea arabica, L.); and if this is correct, then Coffee is nearer the original
than Kahwa. On the other hand, Kahwa, or some form thereof, is in the earliest mentions appropriated
to the drink, whilst some form of the word Bunn is that given to the plant, and Bun is
the existing name
of the plant in Shoa. This name is also that applied in Yemen to the coffee-berry. There is very fair
evidence in Arabic literature that the use of coffee was introduced into Aden by a certain Sheikh Shihabuddin Dhabhani, who had made acquaintance with it on the African coast, and who died in the year H. 875,
i.e. A.D. 1470, so that the introduction may be put about the middle of the 15th century, a time consistent
with the other negative and positive data.2 From Yemen it sprea
d to Mecca (where there arose after
some years, in 1511, a crusade against its use as unlawful), to Cairo, to Damascus and Aleppo, and to
Constantinople, where the first coffee-house was established in 1554. [It is said to have been introduced
into S. India some two centuries ago by a Mahommedan pilgrim, named Baba Budan, who brought a few seeds with him from Mecca: see Grigg, Nilagiri Man. 483; Rice, Mysore, i. 162.] The first European
mention of coffee seems to be by Rauwolff, who knew it in Aleppo in 1573. [See 1 ser. N. & Q. I. 25
seqq.] It is singular that in the Observations of Pierre Belon, who was in Egypt, 154649, full of intelligence
and curious matter as they are, there is no indication of a knowledge of coffee. 1558.Extrait du Livre
intitulé: Les Preuves le plus fortes en faveur de la legitimité de lusage du Café (Kahwa); par le Scheikh Abd -
Alkader Ansari Djézéri Hanbali, fils de Mohammed.In De Sacy, Chrest. Arabe, 2nd ed. i. 412.
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