African Kingdoms
AFRICA
 RESOURCES – salt, iron, gold,
copper (mineral wealth)
 REGIONS:
 Sahara
 Sahel
 Southern Africa
 Rain Forest
 Coastal Plains
 Savanna
Coastal Plain
Sahara
Southern Africa
Sahel
Rain Forest
Welcome to Africa!
 5 Kingdoms of Africa = Ghana, Mali,
Songhai, Axum and Zimbabwe
 Located in Western, Eastern and
South-Central Africa
 Islamic, Christian and Traditional
African Religions prosper in varied
areas and regions
 Africa also has a rich cultural climate…
Kingdom of Axum
 Founded as an Arab colony that
replaces Kush for power in the East
 Ethiopian Highlands (located in
Eastern Africa)
 Triangular trade with India, Africa, and
the Mediterranean
 Christian Kingdom under King Ezana
 Declined in 1100s
KINGDOM OF GHANA
 500 CE-1200 CE (first W African trading state)
 Development of Ghana (Soninke peoples)
 Trade empire = Land of GOLD
 Kings of Ghana rule by divine justice
 Notable Wealth and Military
 African culture dominates Ghana
 Adopted Islam through trade
 Sahara trade routes by caravan
** Declined due to wars in 1100s
KINGDOM OF MALI
 West African Kingdom
 Sundiata (1230-1255 CE) est. Mali after
fleeing execution in Ghana
 Controlled GOLD and SALT
 Capital at Timbuktu = Islamic cultural
center (blends African and Islamic)
 Mansa Musa = economic prosperity and
famous Hajj to Mecca (makes wealth of
Mali famous throughout Europe and
Middle East)
 Decline of Mali due to weak successors
KINGDOM OF SONGHAI
 Largest African Empire
(1462-1586 CE) – breaks from Mali
 Sunni Ali founds Songhai controlling
GOLD and SALT
 Muhammad Ture
 Islamic Law
 Achievements = navy, controlled trade,
government, guns (?)
 Civil War in 1586 splits Songhai
Zimbabwe
 Along Indian Ocean – people who
began to migrate into East Africa =
Bantus
 Great Zimbabwe (means “Great
Stone Buildings”)
 900-1500 BC Bantu peoples
 Indian Ocean trade network
 God-King ruler with large court
African Culture
African Life
 Establishment of city-states based on trade
routes (cultural diffusion = SWAHILI)
 Tribal Structure = common language,
religion and history
 Education valued and Crime rates low
 Veneration of ancestors = closest to the
gods and helped the Africans
 Marriage (polygamy and some matrilineal)
 Rituals, ceremony, dance very important
 Polytheistic tribal religion
 Court, ceremonial and every day art
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