Macassar the most southern portion of Celebes, situated in lat. 40 35'-50 50' S., and long. 119° 25'1200 30' E., and traversed by a lofty chain of mountains, formerly the greatest naval power among the Malay states, is divided into the Dutch possessions and Malay Proper; the latter, of little importance, is governed by a native king, who pays tribute to the Netherlanders. The Portuguese were the first Europeans to form a settlement in Macassar, but they were supplanted by the Dutch, who, after many contests with the natives, gradually attained to supreme power. In 1811 it fell into the hands of the British. who in 1814 defeated the king of Boni, and compelled him to give up the regalia of Macassar. In 1816 it was restored to the Dutch, and continues to enjoy a fair share of the mercantile prosperity of the Netherlands' possessions in the Eastern Archipelago.
The natives are among the most civilized and enterprising, but also the most greedy of the Malay race. SEE MALAYS. They carry on a considerable trade in tortoise-shell and edible nests, grow abundance of rice, and raise great numbers of horses, cattle, sheep, and goats; fishing is also one of the principal employments. They are chiefly adherents to Mohammedanism, which secured its hold in the Malay Archipelago in the 14th century, and to this day continues to proselyte the Macassars for the religion of the Crescent. For the difficulties in the way towards Christianizing the Malayan race, SEE MALAY ARCHIPELAGO.