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Joof family

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Subject: Maad Ndaah Njemeh Joof, Timeline of Serer history, Lamane Jegan Joof, Maad a Sinig Ama Joof Gnilane Faye Joof, Serer maternal clans
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Joof family

Joof (English spelling in the Gambia) or Diouf (French spelling in Senegal and Mauritania) is a surname typically Serer. This surname is also spelt Juuf or Juf (in the Serer language). They are the same people. The differences in spelling is due to the fact that, Senegal was colonized by France, while the Gambia was colonized by Britain. Although spelt differently, they are pronounced the same way. The totem and symbol of the Joof family is the antelope, the symbol of grace, royalty, wisdom, hard work and protection in Serer mythology. The name of their clan is "Njoofene" variations: "Njuufeen" or "Njufeen" (in Serer).[1][2] Members of this family had ruled over many of the pre-colonial kingdoms of Senegambia, including the Kingdom of Sine, the Kingdom of Saloum and the Kingdom of Baol. The royal princesses (Lingeers) from the Joof family were also given in marriage to the pre-colonial kings and princes of Senegambia. Some of these included the kings of Jolof, kings of Waalo, kings of Cayor and Baol (after 1549 following the Battle of Danki). From these marriages, they provided many heirs to the thrones of these kingdoms.[3][4] Although usually associated with Serer royalty, the Joof family also figure prominently in Serer religious affairs.

History of the Joof family

The Wagadou period

The Joof family is one of the old families of Senegambia. Serer oral tradition speaks of a noble called Lamane Jegan Joof, owner of a large herd of livestock and estate who was also a farmer. He migrated from Lambaye following an argument with his relative, the king of Lambaye. The dispute concerned the governance of Lambaye and over-taxation of his herd which he considered unjust. As such, he decided to head south and founded Tukar with his younger brother Ndik Joof. The tradition then went on to say that, he had a son called Sosseh Joof (Socé Diouf) who was the heir of Tukar.[5] Some scholars have proposed that, Tukar (and many of its surrounding villages such as Njujuf, Sob, etc., which were founded by Lamane Jegan Joof making them part of his estate and colony) now a rather large village in present-day Senegal, is an ancient village and well before the Guelowar period (1335 following the alleged Battle of Troubang, many variations in spelling, including Turubang[6]) and placed the foundation of these villages in the 11th century, if not earlier.[7][8] There was in fact no "Battle of Troubang". In reporting this tradition, Henry Gravrand did not notice that this is actually a description of the 1867 (or 1865) Battle of Kansala.[9] The Joof family had ruled Tukar for many centuries, inherited from their ancestor Lamane Jegan Joof through the Serer Lamanic custom, a rather strict custom of Serer land law and inheritance. In 2004, Lamane Njaga Dibor Ndoffene Joof (Lamane Diaga Dibor Ndofene Diouf) was the last lamane of Tukar.[10]

In the early history of the Ghana Empire to its end, the royal princesses of the Empire married into the Serer aristocratic families, some of these included Joof family. These royal princesses belonged to the maternal clan Wagadou (Bagadou in Serer language). With the Joof paternal clan, they ruled the Kingdom of Baol and provided many kings from the patrilineage Joof (the Joof paternal dynasty of Baol). Some of these kings include Boureh Joof (Bouré Diouf), Guidiane Joof (Guidiane Diouf), Ma Joof, Jinak Dialane [probably Gnilane] Joof, Maguinak Joof, etc. These kings preceded the Guelowar period by at least two or three centuries and long before the Fall paternal dynasty of Baol and Cayor who inherited the throne around 1549 after the Battle of Danki. The general consensus is that, after the demise of the Joof paternal and Wagadou maternal dynasties of Baol with other Serer paternal dynasties who jointly ruled Baol, the Fall paternal dynasty succeeded them, hence the first Damels and Teignes (titles of the kings of Cayor and Baol, respectively) from the Fall patrilineage were of Wagadou maternal descent. They simply married into the old royal family and succeeded to the throne.[11][12]

The Guelowar period

The Guelowar period starts from 1350 during the reign of the first Guelowar king of Sine - Maad a Sinig Maysa Wali[13][14] and ends in 1969 after the death of the last king of Sine and Saloum (Maad a Sinig Mahecor Joof and Maad Saloum Fode N'Gouye Joof respectively).[15][16]

Maysa Wali and his family (the maternal clan Guelowar) fled Kaabu in 1335 after the Battle of Troubang. They were defeated by the Ñaanco maternal dynasty of Kaabu (their extended relatives) and were granted asylum in the Kingdom of Sine by a Serer noble Council called The Great Council of Lamanes. Having served as legal advisor to this noble Council for 15 years, Maysa Wali managed to win the confidence and trust of the Council and the common people. He was nominated and elected by the Council and the people as king of Sine. He was the first Guelowar king of Sine. He gave his sisters in marriage to the Serer nobility which sealed the union between Serer and Guelowar.[17] It was the offsprings of these marriages between the old Serer paternal noble clans and the Guelowar maternal clan of Kaabu that ruled the kingdom of Sine and later Saloum. In this Guelowar period, the Joof family (one of the oldest Serer paternal noble clans) provided many kings in the Kingdoms of Sine and Saloum (the Joof paternal dynasty of Sine and Saloum). The Joof family also founded three royal houses as follows (in the order of foundation)[18][19] :

They all trace their descent to Maad Ndaah Njemeh Joof (also known as Bour Ndaah Ndiémé Diouf or Ndaah Njeeme Juuf) - the king of Laah (or Laa) in Baol, around the 13th century. Maad Ndaah Njemeh Joof was the father of Maad Niokhobai Joof (also king of Laa) who was the father of the Great Maad Patar Kolleh Joof (also: Bour or Buur Patar Kholé Diouf or Bour Patar Kholleh Diouf) - the conqueror of Baol.[18] Maad Patar Kolleh Joof was the first of the Joof family to marry a Guelowar (Maad a Sinig Maysa Wali's niece). From that marriage he had Maad a Sinig Niokhobai Mane Nyan Joof (Niokhobaye Mane Niane Diouf) and Maad a Sinig Gejopal Mane Nyan Joof (Guédiopal Niane Mane Diouf), who were the first kings of Sine during the Guelowar period from the patrilineage Joof. Their brother Jaraff Boureh Gnilane Joof (Diaraf Bouré Gnilane Diouf) was not a king of Sine, but a Jaraff (equivalent of Prime Minister), who gave his name to the first Royal House of the Joof Dynasty (in the Guelowar period) and it is from that "The Royal House of Boureh Gnilane Joof" derived from, which provided several kings in Sine and Saloum. The Joof Dynasty that succeeded to the throne of Saloum came from Sine.[18][20]


A short genealogy showing the descendants of Maad Ndaah Njemeh Joof.[18][20]

Descendants of Maad Ndaah Njemeh Joof
                                                         Maad Ndaah Njemeh Joof
                                                     (king of Laa, Baol, c. 1290)
                                                         Maad Niokhobai Joof
                                                         (king of Laa, Baol)
        Maad Patar Kholleh Joof (The Conqueror)             =   ?       =              Lingeer Mane Nyan
        (king of Laa (Baol) and Teigne of Baol)             │  (1)      │ (daughter of Sine o Mev Manneh (Guelowar)
                                                            │           │                  (2)
                                                            │           │_____________________________________________
                                                            │                                                        │
                                                 Jaraff Boureh Gnilane Joof                                          │
                                                 (Jaraff and prince of Sine)                                         │
                                │                         │                          │
             Maad a Sinig Niokhobai Mane Nyan Joof        │                      Lingeer
                         (king of Sine)                   │             Siga Pal Mane Nyan Joof
                                    Maad a Sinig Gejopal Mane Nyan Joof
                                                    (king of Sine)

Status in Serer religion

The Joof family figure prominently in Serer religion.[21][22] Many of the Serer Pangool (saints and ancestral spirits) came from this family.[21] Though associated with Serer royalty, this family's involvement in Serer religious affairs are found within the hermeneutics of Serer religion and traditions. Some of the sacred Serer sites regularly venerated were founded or headed by this family which underpins their involvement in the Pangool cult.[21][22] Some of these venerated sites includes Tagdiam, residence of Maad Semou Njekeh Joof who is associated with the cult of Tagdiam;[23][24] and Tukar, founded by Lamane Jegan Joof. In the Serer religious calendar, the Raan festival which takes place once a year after the new moon is held in Tukar.[25]

Personalities with the surname Joof, Diouf, Juuf or Juf

The surname Joof, Diouf, Juuf or Juf is carried by several personalities, some of which include:


Maad a Sinig Ama Joof Gnilane Faye Joof (king of Sine). Reigned c. 1825-53). From The Royal House of Semou Njekeh Joof.[26] Portrait by David Boilat taken in 1850 when he visited Joal. Catalogued in his work Esquisses sénégalaises in 1853, the year the king died.[27][28]

Kingdom of Baol

  • Lamane Jegan Joof, founder of Tukar in the medieval era (11th century)[8][29]
  • Maad Ndaah Njemeh Joof, king of Laa (Baol; c. 1290)[18]
  • Maad Patar Kholleh Joof (The Conqueror), king of Laa (Baol) and Teigne of Baol (c. 14th century)[18][30]

Kingdom of Sine

Kingdom of Saloum

  • Maad Saloum Semou Jimit Joof, king of Saloum (reigned 1898-1924)[32]
  • Maad Saloum Ndeneh Jogop Joof, king of Saloum (reigned 1901–11)[32]
  • Maad Saloum Semou N'Gouye Joof, king of Saloum (reigned 1911–13)[32]
  • Maat Saloum Gori Joof, king of Saloum (reigned 1913–19)[32]
  • Maad Saloum Mahawa Choro Joof, king of Saloum (reigned 1919–35)[32]
  • Maad Saloum Fode N'Gouye Joof, king of Saloum (reigned 1935–69)[16][32]

Kingdom of Jolof

  • Lingeer Penda Kumba Ngouille Joof, queen consort and queen mother of Jolof (wife of Bour ba Jolof Bakan Tam Boury Nabou Njie, king of Jolof, 1768–69)[33]

Kingdom of Cayor

  • Manguinak Joof, appointed Ber Jak of Cayor (equivalent of Prime Minister) by his first cousin Damel Amari Ngoneh Sobell Fall after he assisted him defeat the king of Jolof at the Battle of Danki (1549).[34]

Royal houses (Guelowar period)

Academic world


Abdou Diouf. The second president of Senegal and Secretary General of Francophonie.

Legal profession

Some of these legal professionals have ventured into politics but they are more known for their legal than for their political occupation :


  • Professor Boucar Diouf, member of the International Society of Nephrology, member of the African board of the Commission for the Global Advancement of Nephrology (COMGAN), member of the African Associations of Nephrology, President and founder-member of the Senegalese Society of Nephrology (SESONEPH)[53][54]


El-Hadji Diouf. Professional footballer. Pictured after winning the Scottish League Cup with Glasgow Rangers.

Music and entertainmentt

Pierre Moustapha Diouf commonly known as Mouss Diouf, renowned actor who had worked with personalities like Ousmane Sembene.
  • Boucar Diouf, Senegalese humorist[61]
  • Élage Diouf, musician, percussionist and composer, naitive of Dakar, member of The Diouf brothers (Les frères Diouf) a Senegalese band.[62][63]
  • Pape Abdou Karim Diouf, brother of Élage Diouf and band member of The Diouf brothers.[62][63]
  • Mouss Diouf (born 1964), actor
Alhaji Alieu Ebrima Cham Joof pictured as a Scout Master in the colonial era. Gambian nationalist and opponent of the British administration in colonial times.

Visual arts

The definition of art is very broad. This section list the names of visual artists (in its narrowest definition) who share this surname :

  • Cheikh Diouf, professional artist. His work is primarily based on African art, winner of many awards[64]

Business and commerce


The following list gives the names of personalities with this surname who are experts in a variety of professions, and are equally known for each of these professions. Their professional life is so wide and varied that they can not be easily described by a single category :


  • The Diouf brothers (Les frères Diouf), music band from Senegal. The band consists of Élage Diouf (El Haji Fall Diouf) and Pape Abdou Karim Diouf.[62][63]

See also


  1. ^ Faye, Louis Diène. Mort et naissance Nouvelles Éditions africaines, 1983, p. 74.
  2. ^ Gastellu, Jean-Marc (M. Sambe - 1937). L'égalitarisme économique des Serer du Sénégal. IRD Editions, 1981, p. 130. ISBN 2-7099-0591-4
  3. ^ a b c d Sarr, Alioune, "Histoire du Sine-Saloum (Sénégal). Introduction, bibliographie et notes par Charles Becker". Version légèrement remaniée par rapport à celle parue en 1986-87
  4. ^ Ndiaye Leyti, Oumar, Le Djoloff et ses Bourba, Dakar: Nouvelles Editions africaines, 1981, 110 pp.
  5. ^ Galvan, Dennis Charles, The State Must Be Our Master of Fire (2004), pp. 2-281.
  6. ^ Sarr, Alioune: "Histoire du Sine-Saloum" (Sénégal) . Introduction, bibliographie et notes par Charles Becker. Version légèrement remaniée par rapport à celle qui est parue en 1986-87. p 19"
  7. ^ Galvan, The State Must Be Our Master of Fire (2004), p. 80.
  8. ^ a b Bressers & Rosenbaum, Achieving Sustainable Development (2003), p. 151.
  9. ^ Sarr, Alioune, Histoire du Sine-Saloum (Sénégal) Introduction, bibliographie et notes par Charles Becker. 1986-87, p 19
  10. ^ a b Galvan, The State Must Be Our Master of Fire (2004), pp. 109-111.
  11. ^ Phillips, Lucie Colvin, Historical Dictionary of Senegal, Scarecrow Press, 1981, pp. 52-71. ISBN 0-8108-1369-6
  12. ^ Institut fondamental d'Afrique noire. Bulletin de l'Institut fondamental d'Afrique noire, Volume 38. IFAN, 1976, pp 557-504.
  13. ^ Sarr, "Histoire du Sine-Saloum (Sénégal)", loc.cit., p. 21.
  14. ^ Thilmans, Guy; Descamps, Cyr & Camara Abdoulaye, Senegalia: études sur le patrimoine ouest-africain: hommage à Guy Thilmans, Sépia, 2006, pp. 220-21. ISBN 2-84280-122-9
  15. ^ Klein, Martin A. Islam and Imperialism in Senegal Sine-Saloum, 1847-1914, Edinburgh University Press (1968). p. XV.
  16. ^ a b c Sheridan, Michael J., & Nyamweru, Celia, African Sacred Groves, James Currey, 2008, p. 141. ISBN 0-8214-1789-4
  17. ^ Ngom, Biram (Babacar Sédikh Diouf), La question Gelwaar et l’histoire du Siin, Université de Dakar, Dakar, 1987, p. 69.
  18. ^ a b c d e f La famille Juuf [in] « L'épopée de Sanmoon Fay », [in] Éthiopiques (revue), no. 54, vol. 7, 2e semestre 1991 [1]
  19. ^ Diouf, Niokhobaye, Chronique du royaume du Sine, pp. 712-13.
  20. ^ a b Diouf, Chronique du royaume du Sine, pp. 712-33.
  21. ^ a b c Gravrand, "Pangool", pp. 332-3, 338, 342-3, 349.
  22. ^ a b (French) Martin, Victor & Becker, Charles, "Lieux de culte et emplacements célèbres dans les pays sereer" (Sénégal), in Bulletin de l’Institut Fondamental d'Afrique Noire, Tome 41, Série B, n° 1, janvier 1979, pp. 133-89 (pp. 15-34). [2]
  23. ^ Gravrand, Henry, "La civilisation sereer, vol. II: Pangool", Dakar: Nouvelles éditions africaines, 1990, p. 35. ISBN 2-7236-1055-1
  24. ^ Fleurentin, Jacques. "Des sources du savoir aux médicaments du futur". IRD Editions, 2002. p 343. ISBN 2709915049
  25. ^ Galvan, Dennis Charles, pp. 108-111, 122, 202, 304, University of California Press (2004) ISBN 0-520-23591-6
  26. ^ a b c d e f g Klein, Martin A, Islam and Imperialism in Senegal Sine-Saloum, 1847 - 1914, Edinburgh University Press, 1968, p. XV.
  27. ^ Boilat, David: Esquisses sénégalaises, Bertrand, 1853, p. 145.
  28. ^ Diouf, "Chronique du royaume du Sine", pp. 772-74 (pp. 47-49).
  29. ^ Galvan, pp. 80-111.
  30. ^ Diouf, pp. 712-13.
  31. ^ a b Diouf, "Chronique du royaume du Sine", pp. 14-18 (pp. 722-30).
  32. ^ a b c d e f Klein, Martin A: "Islam and Imperialism in Senegal Sine-Saloum, 1847 - 1914." Edinburgh University Press (1968), p. XV"
  33. ^ Ndiaye Leyti, Oumar, Le Djoloff et ses Bourba, Dakar: NEA, 1981.
  34. ^ Fall, Tanor Latsoukabé, Recueil sur la Vie des Damel. Introduit et commenté par C. Becker et V. Martin, BIFAN, Tome 36, Série B, n° 1, janvier 1974
  35. ^ Journal of Integer Sequences, Vol. 15 (2012), Article 12.3.2.
  36. ^ (French) "Le professeur Arona Ndoffène Diouf candidat aux élections présidentielles de 2012"Rewmi News.
  37. ^ Diouf, Cheikh, Fiscalité et Domination Coloniale: l'exemple du Sine: 1859–1940. Université Cheikh Anta Diop de Dakar (2005)
  38. ^ a b Peterson, Derek, Macola, Giacomo, "Recasting the Past: History Writing and Political Work in Modern Africa", Ohio University Press (2009) p. 299. ISBN 0821418793 [3]
  39. ^ (Babacar Sédikh Diouf) [in] Ngom, Biram "La question Gelwaar et l’histoire du Siin", Dakar, Université de Dakar (1987), p. 69.
  40. ^ (French) List of ministers on the official site of Ministers of Senegal [4]
  41. ^ Ndiaye, Babacar & Ndiaye, Waly, Présidents et ministres de la République du Sénégal, Dakar, 2006 (2e éd.)
  42. ^ Hughes, Arnold & Perfect, David: Historical Dictionary of The Gambia, Scarecrow Press, 2008. ISBN 0-8108-5825-8
  43. ^ Hughes, Arnold & Perfect, David: A Political History of The Gambia, 1816-1994, University of Rochester Press, 2006. ISBN 1-58046-230-8
  44. ^ Ceesay, Hassoum, Gambian Women: an introductory history, the Gambia: Fulladu Publishers. ISBN 9983-88-005-8
  45. ^ Ly, Abdoulaye, Les regroupements politiques au Sénégal, 1956-1970, Dakar: CODESRIA; Paris: Karthala, 1992, p. 19 (ISBN 2-86978-007-9)
  46. ^ (French)Université Cheikh Anta Diop: GOUVERNEMENTS DU SENEGAL DE 1957 à 2007
  47. ^ (French) All Africa News
  48. ^ (French) p. 11Republique du Senegal, "Liste des candidats admis.
  49. ^ Kime, Philip Graburn, Kime's International Law Directory, Bowden, Hudson & Co., 1983, p. 7.
  50. ^ The Nation Newspaper (Gambia): "Champion of free speech (Tribute)", 7 June 1993, by William Ojo Dixon Colley (Managing Editor of The Nation Newspaper and Secretary General of the Gambia Press Union)
  51. ^ Gambia State House (CV)
  52. ^ The Independent (Gambia): Attorney General Sacked
  53. ^ The Oxford Journal: (CV)
  54. ^ Monash university: "Human Nephron Number, Hypertension and Kidney Disease"
  55. ^ (French) Seneweb News
  56. ^ The Point (Gambia): U-23 to Camp in Tunis
  57. ^ Eurosports Profile
  58. ^ Alain Mercier, "Pape Diouf redonne des couleurs à l'OM", Le Monde 2, n° 266, supplément au Monde n° 19954, 21 mars 2009, pp. 46-49.
  59. ^ (French) Article L'Equipe: Diouf et la France qui «exclut»
  60. ^ (French) "L’énigme Diouf!" OM Actualités, 12 June 2006.
  61. ^ (Review)"Live Comedy with Boucar Diouf"Harbourfront Centre:
  62. ^ a b c (French) "Lancement - Les Frères Diouf - DUND, Mercredi le 5 novembre 2003"Quebe Pop.
  63. ^ a b c Bibliography by Salsa Montreal
  64. ^ Bibliography in Dapper
  65. ^ Foroyaa: [5]
  66. ^ All Africa News: Gambia: Treason Trial Draws to an End As Lie Joof, Rambo Enter Defence
  67. ^ Freedom Newspaper (also an online Radio Station)


  • Sarr, Alioune, Histoire du Sine-Saloum (Sénégal). Introduction, bibliographie et notes par Charles Becker. Version légèrement remaniée par rapport à celle qui est parue en 1986-87
  • Ndiaye Leyti, Oumar, Le Djoloff et ses Bourba (1966); Dakar: Nouvelles Editions africaines, 1981
  • Galvan, Dennis Charles. The State Must Be Our Master of Fire: How Peasants Craft Culturally Sustainable Development in Senegal. Berkeley: University of California Press (2004). ISBN 978-0-520-23591-5
  • Bressers, Hans & Rosenbaum, Walter A. Achieving Sustainable Development: the challenge of governance across social scales. Greenwood Publishing Group (2003). ISBN 0-275-97802-8
  • Phillips, Lucie Colvin. Historical Dictionary of Senegal. Volume 23 of African historical dictionaries. Scarecrow Press (1981). ISBN 0-8108-1369-6
  • Institut fondamental d'Afrique noire. Bulletin de L'Institut Fondamental D'Afrique Noire, Volume 38. IFAN, 1976
  • Thilmans, Guy, Descamps, Cyr & Camara, Abdoulaye, "Senegalia: études sur le patrimoine ouest-africain: hommage à Guy Thilmans." Sépia (2006). ISBN 2-84280-122-9
  • Klein, Martin A. Islam and Imperialism in Senegal Sine-Saloum, 1847-1914. Edinburgh University Press (1968)
  • Sheridan, Michael J. & Nyamweru, Celia. African Sacred Groves: ecological dynamics & social change. James Currey (2008). ISBN 0-8214-1789-4
  • Ngom, Biram (comprising notes of Babacar Sédikh Diouf): La question Gelwaar et l’histoire du Siin. Dakar, Université de Dakar (1987)
  • "l'epopee de Sanmoon Fay. "La famille Juuf." Ethiopiques n°54 revue semestrielle de culture négro-africaine Nouvelle série volume 7 2e semestre (1991)
  • Diouf, Niokhobaye. "Chronique du royaume du Sine." Suivie de notes sur les traditions orales et les sources écrites concernant le royaume du Sine par Charles Becker et Victor Martin (1972). Bulletin de l'Ifan, Tome 34, Série B, n° 4 (1972)
  • Faye, Louis Diène. Mort et naissance: le monde Sereer. Nouvelles Éditions africaines, 1983. ISBN 2-7236-0868-9
  • Bâ, Abdou Bouri. "Essai sur l’histoire du Saloum et du Rip." Avant-propos par Charles Becker et Victor Martin
  • Sonko Godwin, Patience. Leaders of Senegambia Region, Reactions To European Infiltration 19th-20th Century. The Gambia: Sunrise Publishers Ltd (1995). ISBN 9983-86-002-3
  • Sonko Godwin, Patience. Ethnic Groups of The Senegambia Region, A Brief History. Third Edition. The Gambia: Sunrise Publishers Ltd (2003). ISBN 978-9983-86-000-9
  • Wade, Amadou. "Chronique du Walo sénégalais (1186-1855)", B. Cissé trans., V. Monteil, editor, Bulletin de l'IFAN, Series B, Vol. 26, no. 3/4 (1941, 1964)
  • Gastellu, Jean-Marc. L'égalitarisme économique des Serer du Sénégal. IRD Editions, 1981. ISBN 2-7099-0591-4
  • Fall, Tanor Latsoukabé, Recueil sur la Vie des Damel. Introduit et commenté par C. Becker et V. Martin, BIFAN, Tome 36, Série B, n° 1, janvier 1974
  • Martin, Victor & Becker, Charles, "Lieux de culte et emplacements célèbres dans les pays sereer" (Sénégal), Bulletin de l’Institut Fondamental d'Afrique Noire, Tome 41, Série B, n° 1, janvier 1979, pp. 133–89 (pp. 15–34) [6]
  • Gravrand, Henry, "La Civilisation Sereer - Pangool", vol. 2, Les Nouvelles Editions Africaines du Senegal (1990). ISBN 2-7236-1055-1
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