empire-of-ghana

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There were many other Kingdoms in Africa, not just the Kingdom of Egypt, that are worthy of praise and honour. Indeed, Egypt played a great role in civilization, but it was only one of many on the continent.  Below are few of the many greats:

While Europe was experiencing its Dark Ages, a period of intellectual, cultural and economic regression from the sixth to the 13th centuries, Africans were experiencing an almost continent-wide renaissance after the decline of the Nile Valley civilizations of Egypt and Nubia.

The leading civilizations of this African rebirth were the Axum Empire, the Kingdom of Ghana, the Mali Empire, the Songhai Empire, the Ethiopian Empire, the Mossi Kingdoms and the Benin Empire.

Axum Empire

The Aksum or Axum Empire was an important military power and trading nation in the area that is now Eritrea and northern Ethiopia, existing from approximately 100 to 940 A.D.

At its height, it was one of only four major international superpowers of its day along with Persia, Rome and China. Axum controlled northern Ethiopia, Eritrea, northern Sudan, southern Egypt, Djibouti, Western Yemen, and southern Saudi Arabia, totaling 1.25 million square kilometers, almost half the size of India. Axum traded and projected its influence as far as China and India, where coins minted in Axum were discovered in 1990.

Axum was previously thought to have been founded by Semitic-speaking Sabaeans who crossed the Red Sea from South Arabia (modern Yemen) on the basis of Conti Rossini’s theories —but most scholars now agree that when it was founded it was an indigenous African development.

Kingdom of Ghana

Centered in what is today Senegal and Mauritania, the Kingdom of Ghana dominated West Africa between about 750 and 1078 A.D. Famous to North Africans as the “Land of Gold,” Ghana was said to possess sophisticated methods of administration and taxation, large armies, and a monopoly over notoriously well-concealed gold mines.

The king of the Soninke people who founded Ghana never fully embraced Islam, but good relations with Muslim traders were fostered. Ancient Ghana derived power and wealth from gold and the use of the camel increased the quantity of goods that were transported. One Arab writer, Al-Hamdani, describes Ghana as having the richest gold mines on Earth. Ghana was also a great military power. According to one narrative, the king had at his command 200,000 warriors and an additional 40,000 archers.

Mali Empire

After the fall of the Kingdom of Ghana, the Mali Empire rose to dominate West Africa. Located on the Niger River to the west of Ghana in what is today Niger and Mali, the empire reached its peak in the 1350s.

The Mali Empire was founded by Mansa (King) Sundiata Keita and became renowned for the wealth of its rulers, especially Mansa Musa. He was the grandson of Sundiata’s half-brother, and led Mali at a time of great prosperity, during which trade tripled. During his rule, Mansa Musa doubled the land area of Mali; it became a larger kingdom than any in Europe at the time.

The cities of Mali became important trading centers for all of West Africa, as well as famous centers of wealth, culture and learning. Timbuktu, an important city in Mali, became one of the major cultural centers not only of Africa but of the entire world. Vast libraries and Islamic universities were built. These became meeting places of the finest poets, scholars and artists of Africa and the Middle East.

The Kingdom of Mali had a semi-democratic government with one of the world’s oldest known constitutions – The Kurukan Fuga.

The Kurukan Fuga of the Mali Empire was created after 1235 by an assembly of nobles to create a government for the newly established empire.  The Kurukan Fouga divided the new empire into ruling clans that were represented at a great assembly called the Gbara. The Gbara was the deliberative body of the Mali Empire and was made up of 32 members from around 29 clans. They were given a voice in the government and were a check against the emperor’s (mansa’s) power. It was presided over by a belen-tigui (master of ceremonies) who recognized anyone who wanted to speak including the mansa. The Gbara and the Kurukan Fuga remained in place for over 40o years until 1645.

According to Wikipedia, Disney’s “Lion King” movie was based on the real life narrative of Mansa Sundiata Keita.

Songhai Empire

The Songhai Empire, also known as the Songhay Empire, was the largest state in African history and the most powerful of the medieval west African states. It expanded rapidly beginning with King Sonni Ali in the 1460s and by 1500s, it had risen to stretch from Cameroon to the Maghreb. In 1360, disputes over succession weakened the Mali Empire, and in the 1430s, Songhai, previously a Mali dependency, gained independence under the Sonni Dynasty. Around thirty years later, Sonni Sulayman Dama attacked Mema, the Mali province west of Timbuktu, paving the way for his successor, Sonni Ali, to turn his country into one of the greatest empires sub-Saharan Africa has ever seen.

Perhaps, it’s most popular leader was Muhammad Askia the Great. At its peak, the Songhai city of Timbuktu became a thriving cultural and commercial center. Arab, Italian and Jewish merchants all gathered for trade. By 1500, the Songhai Empire covered over 1.4 million square kilometers.

The Ethiopian Empire

The Ethiopian Empire also known as Abyssinia, covered a geographical area that the present-day northern half of Ethiopia covers. It existed from approximately 1137 (beginning of Zagwe Dynasty) until 1975 when the monarchy was overthrown in a coup d’état.  In 1270, the Zagwe dynasty was overthrown by a king claiming lineage from the Aksumite emperors and, hence, Solomon. The thus-named Solomonic Dynasty was founded and ruled by the Habesha, from whom Abyssinia gets its name.

The Habesha reigned with only a few interruptions from 1270 until the late 20th century. It was under this dynasty that most of Ethiopia’s modern history occurred. During this time, the empire conquered and incorporated virtually all the peoples within modern Ethiopia. They successfully fought off Italian, Arab and Turkish armies and made fruitful contacts with some European powers, especially the Portuguese, with whom they allied in battle against the latter two invaders.

Mossi Kingdoms

The Mossi Kingdoms were a number of different powerful kingdoms in modern-day Burkina Faso which dominated the region of the Upper Volta River for hundreds of years. Increasing power of the Mossi kingdoms resulted in larger conflicts with regional powers. The Kingdom of Yatenga became a key power attacking the Songhai Empire between 1328 and 1477, taking over Timbuktu and sacked the important trading post of Macina.

When Askia Mohammad I became the leader of the Songhai Empire with the desire to spread Islam, he waged a Holy war against the Mossi kingdoms in 1497. Although the Mossi forces were defeated in this effort, they resisted attempts to impose Islam. Although there were a number of jihad states in the region trying to forcibly spread Islam, namely the Massina Empire and the Sokoto Caliphate, the Mossi kingdoms largely retained their traditional religious and ritual practices. Being located near many of the main Islamic states of West Africa, the Mossi kingdoms developed a mixed religious system recognizing some authority for Islam while retaining earlier African spiritual belief systems.

Benin Empire

Once a powerful city-state, Benin exists today as a modern African city in what is now south-central Nigeria. The present-day oba (King) of Benin traces the founding of his dynasty to A.D. 1300. The Benin Empire was a pre-colonial Edo state. Until the late 19th century, it was one of the major powers in West Africa. According to one eye witness report written by Olfert Dapper, “The King of Benin can in a single day make 20,000 men ready for war, and, if need be, 180,000, and because of this he has great influence among all the surrounding peoples… . His authority stretches over many cities, towns and villages. There is no King thereabouts who, in the possession of so many beautiful cities and towns, is his equal.”

When European merchant ships began to visit West Africa from the 15th century onwards, Benin came to control the trade between the inland peoples and the Europeans on the coast. When the British tried to expand their own trade in the 19th century, the Benin warriors killed their envoys.

Source: http://atlantablackstar.com/2013/12/05/7-midieval-african-kingdoms/4/

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Oualata is one of the oldest cities in Africa encircled by an impressive desert and declared World Heritage by UNESCO in 1996. Founded by the Soninkés in the seventh century and integrated into the empire of Ghana, the city was destroyed in 1076 Before being restored in 1224.

Scumbag Africa

Didn’t do anything big for April fools this year and couldn’t finish this list but here’s the list:

Algeria

Produces great football players.

- They all play for France.

Chad

Known as “The Heart of Africa”…

-  …“The dead heart of Africa”.

Democratic Republic of the Congo

Was called “Zaire”

- Now gets confused with its neighbour. 

Egypt

Largest nation in Arab world.

- Exploits previous non-Arab culture and civilization for monetary gains.

Eritrea

98.52% Average turnout for elections

- only ever had one election (which was for independence). 

Ghana

Named after Ghana empire.

- Never had any ties to the aforementioned Empire.

Côte d'Ivoire

Name translates to “Ivory Coast” in English.

- Official English name is still “Côte d'Ivoire”.

Liberia

Wasn’t colonized by Europeans

- colonized by Americans.

Madagascar

Has successful movie series as namesake

- Didn’t save us by trademarking name. 

Mali

Once had a successful civilization.

- Doesn’t know how to exploit previous successful civilization for monetary gains.(See Egypt)

Morocco

Only nation to leave African Union.

- Wants to rejoin African Union.

Mozambique

Speaks Portuguese.

- Doesn’t do much else.

Nigeria

Largest oil producing country in Africa.

- Still has frequent blackouts and wants neighbours’ oil fields.

Senegal

loves sheep; the most popular tv show is a most beautiful ram contest

- biggest holiday involves sacrificing sheep

South Africa

Always appears in geography quizzes.

- As a capital cities trick question.

South Sudan

Became a thing a few years ago.

- Atlases everywhere became outdated.

Sudan

Split up from South Sudan.

- Doesn’t change name to “North Sudan”.

Tunisia

Builds reputation as one of the most stable countries in Africa and the Arab world

- Starts Arab spring.

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Yaa Asantewaa

Celebrated as the Anti-colonial, freedom fighter and Queen mother of Ejisu (Ashanti Empire, modern Ghana).

Queen mother Nana Yaa Asantewaa, keeper of the Golden stool, refused to forfeit this sacred Asante symbol to the colonial governor and led the her people to fight the British in 1900.

She said:
“If you, the men of Asante, will not go forward, then we will. We, the women, will. I shall call upon my fellow women. We will fight! We will fight till the last of us falls in the battlefields.”

It took 2000 British troops to capture her, but her acts were never forgotten and her courage motivated the kingdom to rebel against the British.

What a Queen!
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Queens of Africa series

One image and 100 words to describe all the women who inspired, shaped and changed our continent for the better.

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the n word - originally

my dad told me these things, im just now looking into it. please read.

“Never forget that the word “Nigger” came from the Khemit/Egyptian term for ‘GOD’ and that the word is ‘N-G'R’ or ‘NET-GER’. - Bro. Alim Bey 

“NGA” is original name for Queen. ‘Niger’ means King in Ibo and Niger-IA means Queen. Those countries were the lands of kings and queens - Nile Valley Contributions to Civilization 

“The root word NGR existed in ancient Egyptian Sacred writings and hieroglyphs…and has divine origin and meaning.” - Ernie A. Smith, M.D., Ph.D., Professor of Linguistics and Doctor of Internal Medicine

N-ger-s refers to …The Goddess Neggur (Hathor) who is one of the oldest female deities of ancient Kemit (Egypt) who was worshipped thousands of years before Genesis and the Bible existed. - Sir E. A. Wallis Budge, (1857-1934), Egyptologist 

“Nugarmatta: Term used by Africans of the Ghana Empire to call themselves” -writings of Ibn Buttata in National Geographic Magazine 

“Remember to know a thing or a person’s real name is to know its power. To pronounce it correctly is to free its energy. To deny your real name is to deny your power and energy.” - Anonymous 

“In conclusion it is time that Negroes, pan-negroes (pan-africans, melanesian negroids, indo-negroids) and blacks worldwide know that the so-called negro is of the godhead and should start believing it, having self-confidence, belief in self and in their ability.” -Bro. Alim Bey 

“My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.” - Hosea 4:6 

don’t let these white people make it seem like it’s something bad. they cant take our word and do that! black people are truly kings and queens.

Yaa Asantewa was the Queen Mother of Ejisu in the Ashanti Empire during the late 18th and early 19th century, as well as leader of the Ashanti rebellion against the British Empire.

Born in 1840, Yaa Asantewa played a supporting role in the royal family of Ashanti Empire (located in modern-day Ghana) as ‘Queen Mother’.  Following the exile of her grandson King Prempeh I by the British in 1896, Yaa Asantewa inherited leadership of the empire as regent in his stead.

In 1900, the British governor-general of the Gold Coast, Frederick Hodgson, met with local leaders at Kumasi. He demanded that the Golden Stool, the divine throne and symbol of the Ashanti nation, be turned over to him as a recognition of British power. While some of the leaders considered this, Yaa Asantewa, as Guardian of the Golden Stool, reprimanded them, saying:

“If you the men of Ashanti will not go forward, then we will. We the women will. I shall call upon my fellow women. We will fight the white men. We will fight till the last of us falls in the battlefields.”

Yaa Asantewa then assembled an army of 5000 volunteers to resist the British forces, inflicting heavy losses upon them and forcing them to retreat to the fortified British offices at Kumasi. With the offices defended by machine guns and 500 Nigerian Hausas, Yaa Asantewa’s forces chose to instead lay siege to the British, cutting telegraph wires and blocking supply routes. Two days before the British would have been forced to surrender, a relief column sent by Hodgson broke the siege and forced the Ashanti to retreat.

Despite having been able to harass the British forces from several well-defended forts, the Ashanti Empire was eventually defeated and absorbed into the British Empire in 1902. As rulers before her had been, Yaa Asantewaa was exiled to the Seychelles, where she remained until her death in the early 1920s. In 1924   Prempeh I was finally allowed to return to Ashanti, bringing Yaa Asantewa’s remains with him to receive a royal burial on her native soil.

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The Empire of ancient Ghana
The empire of ancient Ghana created by the Mende (Soninke) with human habitation dating back to at least around 4,000 BC.

Ancient Ghana was located in what is now southeastern Mauritania and western Mali.
Today the area around Dar Tichitt in southern Mauritania has been the subject of much archaeological attention, revealing successive layers of settlement near what still were small lakes as late as 1200 BCE. At this time people there built circular compounds, 60-100 feet in diameter, near the beaches of the lakes. (‘Compound’ is the name given to a housing type, still common today, in which several members of related families share space within a wall.) These compounds were arranged into large villages located about 12 miles from each other. Inhabitants fished, herded cattle and planted some millet, which they stored in pottery vessels. This was the last era of reasonable moisture in this part of the Sahara. By 1000 BCE the villages, still made up of compounds, had been relocated to hilltop positions, and were walled. Cattle were still herded, more millet was grown, but there were no more lakes for fishing. From 700-300 BCE the villages decreased in size and farming was reduced at the expense of pastoralism.

Architecturally, the villages of Dar Tichitt resemble those of the modern northern Mande (Soninke), who live in the savanna 300-400 miles to the south. These ancient villagers were not only farmers, but were engaged in trade connected with the salt and copper mines which developed to the north. Horse drawn vehicles passed through the Tichitt valley, bringing trading opportunities, ideas, and opening up the inhabitants to raids from their more nomadic northern neighbors. Development of the social and political organization necessary to handle commerce and defense must have been a factor in the subsequent development of Ghana, the first great Sudanic empire, in this part of West Africa.

It is very plausible to think that the people of antiquity in Ancient Ghana may be connected to the Ancient peoples who lived in the Sahara before it turned into dessert. Additionally Habitation of the region where the Ghana empire existed is much older than Western academics are aware of.

keiyakins  asked:

You mentioned Continental seniors for Europe, the Americas and Asia, and Oceania and the seas. Antarctica is probably 'the seas', since the interior is pretty barren, but what about Africa? Are the regionals just really good at working together to coordinate large scale intervention there?

Yes they are. They’re some of the best on the planet, in fact. But there’s a lot more going on than that.

The simplest part of the explanation has to do with a background-contextual matter. Africa taken as an average, culturally speaking (never a safe matter, but never mind for the moment) is, on the average, more astahfrith than a lot of culture-areas on the planet. The sense of wizardry being something of a commonplace — if not necessarily a benevolent one — is quite alive in some parts of the continent. (The non-benevolence has to do with a much more-extensive-than-usual crossover into the home cultures of those minor aspects of wizardry that don’t require enacture. Where power leaks into life without the moral strictures that accompany Power-curated wizardly practice, there will always be people who’ll abuse it: or, knowing about it, simply try to fake it. That’s a subject for a long discussion some other time.)

(a lot more [and some of it rather technical] under the cut…)

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