Civilisations

1,000 year kings’ list of Bunyoro-Kitara, Uganda (including the first ruler, a woman)

The evidence of civilisation around the Great Lakes of East Africa dates back 5,500 years, but if we want to name names, monarchs tend to keep better records because their right to rule depends on it. So, we know that the kingdom of Bunyoro-Kitara existed from the 11th century to today, surviving an attempt by …

1,000 year kings’ list of Bunyoro-Kitara, Uganda (including the first ruler, a woman) Read More »

Kingdom of Imerina: Images you haven’t seen from Africa

The Madagascan Kingdom of Imerina was a sizable African Kingdom that spanned from the 16th century to the 19th century. It is named so, as it had control over the majority of what is now modern-day Madagascar. It started from Imerina and spread outwards. It had two capitals, one spiritual at Ambohimanga and one political at Antananarivo, which is also the capital of modern day Madagascar as well. The architecture of Kingdom of Imerina is evidence that African achievements are poorly understood and incorrectly portrayed.

The Rwandan Civilization (2000 BC – 1960 AD): Iron and Soundwave Technology

Although, the civilisation of Rwanda dates back to 2020 BC, the earliest date for the start of centralisation under one monarch is between the 10th and 11th century. Rwanda was a landlocked kingdom situated in east-central Africa, on the south of the equator, with Nyanza as its capital. The development of the society may be …

The Rwandan Civilization (2000 BC – 1960 AD): Iron and Soundwave Technology Read More »

The Ancient Walls of Benin: 16,000 Kilometres (800AD-14th Century)

The chances are you have probably never heard of the ancient walls of Benin. The location of the old Benin city is still the present-day location of Benin city in Edo state, south-west Nigeria.When the Europeans first arrived at the Benin kingdom in the late 15th Century, they were astonished by the wealth, quality of …

The Ancient Walls of Benin: 16,000 Kilometres (800AD-14th Century) Read More »

Kingdom of Burundi: 11,000 year old invention, 5th most important crop in the world

The kingdom of Burundi is a landlocked historic kingdom located in the east of central Africa, in the south of the equator. It is bordered by Rwanda in the north, Tanzania to the south and east while the Democratic Republic of Congo to the west.  Only a few ethnic communities populate the country, most prominent …

Kingdom of Burundi: 11,000 year old invention, 5th most important crop in the world Read More »

The Kingdom of Benin: 1,660 Years from 355 AD to Present

ORIGIN AND EVOLUTION The Great precolonial Benin kingdom is one of the oldest West African civilisations in continuous existence that commands respect; having existed from 355 BC to Present. Well known for its brilliant bronze, ivory, iron artefacts and military prowess. This kingdom although annexed is still present-day Benin city in southwestern Nigeria. It is …

The Kingdom of Benin: 1,660 Years from 355 AD to Present Read More »

Kingdom of Dahomey: Could an all female army defeat men?

The Kingdom of Dahomey or the Fon kingdom of Dahomey was a small kingdom in western Africa (now in the southern region of Benin). It was developed on the Abomey Plateau amongst the Fon people in the early 17th century and became a regional power in the 18th century by conquering key cities on the Atlantic coast. It …

Kingdom of Dahomey: Could an all female army defeat men? Read More »

Dihya, Queen of the Berbers: the Wars against the Rashidun caliphate

The ancient indigenous people of North Africa, West of Egypt were of many tribes, and they were commonly referred to as the Berbers. Their lands were invaded several times, yet they managed to maintain their languages and their culture along with considerable military power. Among the invaders and conquerors of North Africa were the Phoenicians, …

Dihya, Queen of the Berbers: the Wars against the Rashidun caliphate Read More »

Kingdom of Buganda: Uganda’s 1000 year old Kingdom

A fallacy about African history is often repeated that political institutions were introduced by either Europeans or Arabs. With one 1,000 year old kingdom still in existence, we demonstrate that African stories are available to turn into documentaries, education and entertainment material from the Kingdom of Buganda.

Federation of Kwararafa (13th – 18th Century)

Africa is full of surprises. Most people visit Africa for safari parks and taking pictures of lovely animals from Range Rovers. But what if you could take a trip into the mind like inception – a journey through time and space. What if you could journey into your imagination and visit a sophisticated African state with no king, no concerns of external threats, a self-sufficient domestic economy, no economy dependent on slavery? Such a state existed.

Mamluk Sultanate (1250-1517 CE): Never let a Megalomaniac get in the way of beautiful architecture

Some civilisations sacrificed a work-life balance, art and architectural brilliance to focus on winning wars. One African dynasty found time to fight the Mongol empire and build insane works of beautiful architecture at the same time. “Mamluk” comes from the Arabic “owned” or slave. The Mamluk sultanate was created by slave soldiers and administrators that took over Egypt from the Ayyubid dynasty.

The Rashidun Caliphate: international spread of Islam

Over the span of thirty years, an empire emerged and grew supporting the rising religion at the time, Islam. This period witnessed a spectacular expansion of territory and religion during the Rashidun Caliphate which translates to “The Rightly-Guided Successors” under the leadership of four caliphs covering an area of 6,400,000 km2 and including a population of 21,400,000.

The Kingdom of Kerma (2500-1500 BC)

The Kingdom of Kerma was an ancient civilization that existed between 2500 BC and 1500 BC, with its capital at the city of Kerma. It was located in the heart of Sudanese Nubia and is the first provable sub Saharan kingdom to have existed. The Kingdom of Kerma is thought to have existed without a …

The Kingdom of Kerma (2500-1500 BC) Read More »

The Hausa States: The Pre-Islamic Confederacy

THE HAUSA ETHNICITY The Hausa people are one of the largest ethnic group in Africa. The old Hausa ethnic locations before the Fulani jihad were known collectively as Hausa Bakwai and Hausa Banza, where “Bakwai” was a term used for the original seven Legitimate(Bakwai) Hausa states: Biram, Daura, Gobir, Rano, Katsina, Zaria (Zazzau), and Kano. …

The Hausa States: The Pre-Islamic Confederacy Read More »

The Fatimid Caliphate: Contributions to Arts and Sciences

The Fatimid caliphate was an Islamic kingdom that stretched over North Africa from 909 AD to 1171 AD. The caliphate promulgated the Seveners (or Ismāʿīlism) branch of Shia Islam and its geography spread from the Red Sea (to the East) to the Atlantic Ocean (to the West). It covered a total area of 4,100,000 square …

The Fatimid Caliphate: Contributions to Arts and Sciences Read More »

The Bantu Migration: the irony of “them” and “us” thinking

“Bantu” is the academic category name for people of West Africa that initially lived between the regions of Cameroon and Nigeria. The name is a ‘broad brush’ grouping. Some theories propose that some migrants of this grouping traversed in groups and waves into the Congo and other basins. The Bantu migration took them far to …

The Bantu Migration: the irony of “them” and “us” thinking Read More »

Njinga Mbandi (1581–1663): Queen, Intelligent, Tactician, Negotiator, Warrior, Thorn to Portugal

  The start of the Transatlantic slave trade was during the 15th century when the Portuguese began kidnapping people from Africa’s west coast and transported them to America and Europe. For almost a century, Portugal was rising and growing as an empire, an empire that was built on the use of slaves captured from Africa …

Njinga Mbandi (1581–1663): Queen, Intelligent, Tactician, Negotiator, Warrior, Thorn to Portugal Read More »