SENNAR, a country of north-east Africa, part of the AngloEgyptian Sudan.
Its boundaries have varied considerably, but Sennar proper is the triangular-shaped territory between the White and Blue Niles north of io° N.
This region is called by the Arabs "The Island of Sennar" and by the negro inhabitants "Hui."
Whilst Sennar has never been held to extend westward of the White Nile, the term has often been used to embrace "the Island of Meroe," i.e.
South-east Sennar stretches to the Abyssinian hills.
In general Sennar is a vast plain, lying for the most part much higher than the river-levels and about 2000 ft.
Sennar lies in the region of light rain, increasing in the S.E.
The miasmatic exhalations caused by the sun playing on stagnant waters after the floods give rise to the "Sennar fever," which drives even the natives from the plains to the southern uplands.
The great plain of Sennar is mainly occupied by Hassania Arabs in the north, by Abu-Rof (Rufaya) Hamites of Beja stock in the east as far as Fazogli, and elsewhere by the negroid Funj and the group of tribes collectively known as Shangalla (the Bertat, Legas, Sienetjo, Guinus, Kadalos, &c.; see Shangalla).
Above Khartum, one of the most thriving towns in the eastern Sudan; Sennar, 241 m above Khartum, the capital of the Funj empire and chief town of the mudiria of Sennarof the ancient city little remains except a mosque with a high minaret; and Roseires, 426 m.
A railway, built in 1909-1910, connects Khartum, Wad Medani and Sennar with Kordofan, the White Nile being bridged near Goz Abu Guma.
Sennar, lying between Nubia and Abyssinia, was in ancient times under Egyptian or Ethiopian influence and its inhabitants appear to have embraced Christianity at an early period.
The Funj who had meantime settled in Sennar became the dominant race by the 15th century.
Since that period Sennar has had no history distinct from that of the rest of the Anglo-Egyptian Sudan (see Sudan, § Anglo-Egyptian, History).
C. Poncet, passed through Sennar on his way from Egypt to Abyssinia, and an account of his experiences has been published (Lettres.
He spent some time in Sennar in 1772, and in his Travels has left an interesting account of the kingdom in its decadence.
Lists of the kings of Sennar, and of the tributary rulers of Halfaya, Shendi, and Fazokl are given in vol.
After a month's vigorous drilling Hicks led 5000 of his men against an equal force of dervishes in Sennar, whom he defeated, and cleared the country between the towns of Sennar and Khartum of rebels.
Of Gondar, the capital of Amhara, and being on the main route from Sennar to Abyssinia, is a trade centre of some importance.
The ibis is chiefly an inhabitant of the Nile basin from Dongola southward, as well as of Kordofan and Sennar; whence about midsummer it moves northwards to Egypt.
But the railway from Khartum to El Obeid, via Sennar, built in 1909-1911, crosses the Nile some 60 m.
About the beginning of the 16th century Funj from Sennar settled in the country; towards the end of that century Kordofan was conquered by Suleiman Solon, sultan of Darfur.
He subdued Nubia and Sennar in 182022; and then, requiring a larger army, he obtained instructors from France.
As their numbers thinned, they endeavoured to maintain their little power by training some hundreds of blacks; but again, on the approach of Ismail, another son of the pasha of Egypt, sent with an army in 1820 to subdue Nubia and Sennar, some returned to Egypt and settled in Cairo, while the rest, amounting to about 100 persons, fled in dispersed parties to the countries adjacent to Senngr.
Egyptian sovereignty in the Sudan dates from 1820, when Mehemet Ali sent a large force into the country, and ultimately established his authority over Sennar and Kordofan.
Colonel Hicks was fully aware of the unfitness of his rabble forces for the contemplated task, and on the 5th of August he telegraphed: I am convinced it would be best to keep the two rivers and province of Sennar, and wait for Kordofan to settle itself.
- Sennar, Kassala and Dongola are quite safe for the present.
During the sirdars absence from Omdurman Colonel Hunter commanded an expedition up the Blue Nile, and by the end of September had occupied and garrisoned Wad Medani, Sennar, Karkoj and Roseires.
By the Nile waterways there is easy transport from the southern and western equatorial provinces and from Sennar and other eastern districts.
At the south-east corner the rim of the crater is, as it were, breached by a deep crevasse through which the Abai escapes, and here develops a great semicircular bend like that of the Takazze, but in the reverse direction - east, south and north-west - down to the plains of Sennar, where it takes the name of Bahr-el-Azrak or Blue Nile.
The French physician C. Poncet, who P y J went there in 1698, via Sennar and the Blue Nile, was the only European that afterwards visited the country before Bruce in 1769.
Bruce subsequently returned to Egypt (end of 1772) via Gondar, the upper Atbara, Sennar, the Nile and the Korosko desert (see Bruce, James).