To the memory of my mother Princess Yubdar of Ethiopia

'Silver may be lost---A bright star never'
- Ethiopian Saying


In the middle of the nineteenth century a British officer, J. T. Bell, penetrated Abyssinia, rose to high rank in the service of the Emperor Theodore, was made Prince by royal decree, and, married a princess. The daughter of the marriage, the Princess Yubdar, fell in love with Theophilus Waldmeier, a Swiss explorer and missionary, a great friend of Bell and of the Emperor—who joyfully agreed to the marriage. For his bravery and skill Theo. Waldmeier was raised to royal rank and after Bell had perished while defending the Emperor, occupied a position of great trust. Having stood in danger of death during Theodore's madness, he was rescued by the expedition of General Napier. He then moved to Syria but was in constant touch with Menelek II, who valued him as an adviser. His daughter, Waisaro Asfa Yilma, who was educated in Europe and has travelled extensively, is peculiarly fitted to interpret Ethiopia to the western world. An accomplished linguist, she has inherited her father's fine instinct for scholarship, and this, her first book, reveals a strong personality and an able pen. The Princess is married to an English officer. She is, like her husband, an accomplished musician. At the present time she is giving valuable assistance to the Ethiopian cause, and from her close touch with the leading personalities among her countrymen can write with authority upon the present crisis.


The Princess Asfa Yilma wishes to acknowledge with sincere gratitude the kindness of Mr. O. B. Naf, of Messrs. Waring & Gillow (who was in charge of the decoration of the Imperial palace) in permitting the inclusion of photographs taken by him during his stay in Ethiopia. She wishes also to thank Mr. Clifford Troke for the care and skill which he has devoted to the reading of the proofs.


Electronic edition created and published online by members of the
Emperor Haile Sellassie First Theocracy Reign
Order of the Nyahbinghi

Crest of the Nyahbinghi Order

March 1, 2021