MOROCCO, or MOROCCO, known to the natives as Maghreb-el-Aksa, "the farthest West," is a former empire or sultanate which, though at one time comprising a portion of Algeria in one direction, and exercising in the other a modified jurisdiction as far as Timbuktu, is now confined to that part of northwest Africa bounded on the E. (at the Wad Kiss) by Algeria, and on the S. by Cape Nun and the Wad Draa, though both here and on the Sahara side of the Atlas the limits of the empire are rather inde terminate. Area, about 219,000 square miles; pop. estimated at 6,000,000. Polit ically, Morocco comprises at present the old kingdoms of Fez and Morocco and the territories of Tafilet (Tafilalet) and Sus; but the two latter are almost inde pendent, recognizing the Sultan only as the Prince of True Believers, an office which he holds as the most powerful of the Shereefs or descendants of Moham med. These four principal governments are divided into 17 primary provinces or "amalats," each presided over by a Kaid or "Bashaw," as the Europeans call him.
Topography.—Morocco is, as a rule, mountainous, the Atlas traversing it in several chains from S. W. to N. E., and by various spurs both to the coast coun try and to the desert. There are, how ever, numerous level plains, some of which are of great extent, and very rich, the soil being in many places a deep, black loam, evidently the bed of an an cient lake or of a primeval forest. There are also numerous more or less level pla teaus similar to those of Algeria. But with the exception of parts of the Atlas, the forest of Mamora, the date and argan groves of the S., and a few straggling copses around the burial places of saints, Morocco has, in the course of the last thousand years, been almost denuded of timber, the palmetto scrub being about the most common representative of wood land.
Climate.—The climate of Morocco varies much, though the W. slope, being tempered by the sea breezes and pro tected from the hot desert winds by the Atlas, is temperate, the thermometer sel dom falling below 40° or rising above 90°. But in summer the interior valleys
are very hot, and in winter snow often falls in Fez and Mequinez, where ice an inch thick is by no means uncommon. Farther S. extremes of heat and drought are more common, though as a rule the climate is equable. In the Sus country and the region of Tafilet rain is scarce and in places almost unknown. But far ther N., and on the Atlantic and Medi terranean slopes, it falls with tolerable regularity every year between October and April.
Trade.—The total value of imports in 1918 was $73,706,922, and for the ex ports, $24,654,973. The imports were chiefly cotton goods, sugar, tea, and wine. The exports consisted of eggs, breadstuffs, hides and skins, seeds, and vegetables.
Agriculture.—The principal products of the country are cattle, eggs, barley, corn, hides, vegetables. Among the fruits grown in quantities are figs, lemons, olives, oranges, and dates. Cot ton growing was introduced in 1911. The soil is capable of extensive cultivation.
Education.—In 1918 there were 191 schools open to the public. There were 21,520 pupils, with 668 teachers.
Finance.—The public debt of the French protectorate is about $80,000,000. The estimated annual income is about $17,000,000, and the expenditure is about the same.
Transportation.—The French have spent large sums of money in the devel opment of roads. There are about 1,300 miles of first-class roads in the protec torate and about 400 miles of secondary roads. Transportation is carried on to a considerable degree by motor trucks. A large number of railroads have been built, chiefly for military purposes. In 1919 a line from Taza to Fez, linking the eastern and the western systems, was in the process of construction. There are about 3,000 miles of telegraph lines in Morocco. The most important ports are Tetuan and Tangier, El Arish, Casa Blanca, and Mogador.