Africa -- Morocco -- Tangiers


Tangiers is a Moroccan seaport city on the Straights of Gibraltar.  It fell into English possession in 1662 as part of Catherine of Braganza’s dowry to Charles II but was later abandoned to the Moors in 1684.  During English occupation, the population consisted of a sizeable number of English officers, sailors, and soldiers, their families, and roughly 600 English inhabitants, consisting of merchants, laborers, and other sorts, as well as a smaller group of Italians, Portuguese, Spaniards, Dutch, French, Jews, Moors, and a good number of slaves.  The town was protected by a garrison, a castle, and several towers.  Under English occupation, the town and its sea trade were constantly harassed by Berber pirates and Algerine corsairs, which prompted authorities to build a v-shaped “mole” or stone breakwater as an artificial harbor to keep ships safe.  E. M. Routh, Tangier, England’s Lost Atlantic Outpost (London, 1912), 272-3.   Image: Wenceslas Hollar - Tangier from the E. , WikiMedia Commons