Friday, July 8, 2011
GREAT AFRICAN LEADERS IN HISTORY
Africa has got leaders who really fought for their freedoms and libration from other invaders. We have great leaders which are divided into deferent categories in which they all demonstrated their ability of leadership qualities and themes. Some of them were unifiers, military leaders, religious leaders, empire builders, and women leaders
THE GREAT UNIFIERS:
Narmer (Ancient Egyptian - "Striker" who ruled in the 32nd century. Narmer was the first Pharaoh of Kemet (ancient Egypt) he was a great unifier because he unified both the northern and the southern part of Egypt into one empire. this evidence came by in the form of a palette found 1898 in Hierakonpolis which shows Narmer displaying the badge worn to show official position both Upper and Lower Egypt. Narmer's name was written phonetically by the hieroglyphicsymbol for a catfish and that of a chisel. Other variables of his name include "Narmeru" or "Merunar", but convention uses "Narmer". Like other First Dynasty Kings, his name is a single word ("The Striker") and may be shorthand for "Horus is the Striker". He married Neithhotep, a princess of northern Egypt. His name was at everywhere in Egypt including the vicinities Tarkharn to the south of Memphis
Piankhi was seen as the best ruler of the kingdom of Cush on the Upper Nile in what is now the northern Sudan. he succeeded his father, Kashta who founded Nubian Kingdom in Northern Sudan. He conquered lower Egypt when it was in crisis, he reigned from 741-ca. 712 B.C. he also built a number of temples in Egyptian style.
King Shabaka became pharaoh of Egypt and the 25th Nubian Dynasty (8th-7th centuries BC), invaded Egypt and made Memphis the capital. He established diplomatic relations with the Assyrian kings. The Nubian king is mostly identified with two large urei (cobras) placed over the king's forehead which signifies protections of the gods and kings from evil forces. When Shabaka came to the throne, Nubian history and Egyptian history become one, although certain the details are unclear. He was described as a just ruler by Herodotus , as someone who sentenced prisoners to public service in the form of dyke building for irrigation projects rather than condemn them to death. His death is unclear but he was buried in a tomb supplied with funerary goods, including vessels of various stones and finely worked articles of ivory and gold. His horses were also buried at el-Kurru, draped in beaded blankets and silver trappings.
Ancient Kingdoms of the Nile,Dietrich Wildung, 1997, p. 167
Daily Life of the Nubians, Robert Steven Bianchi, 2004
Queen Ahmose-Nefertari was celebrated as a warrior and a religious leader who helped to fight foreign invaders in the lower Egypt. Ahmose-Nefertari married her brother Ahmose I, as was customary in the Egyptian Royal Family at that time. She and her husbanbd ruled for 25 years She held many important titles and her husband bought for her the title of Second Prophet of Amen and gave it to her.She also held one of the most important tittles as the “God’s Wife” which is the high ranking tittle of a royal women, she was the only and the first to hold the tittle known as “God’s Wife of amen”. It has been believe that she helped her husband to build projects as it was being displayed on the alabaster quarries of Assiut and the limestone quarries at Memphis. When her hasband died she became the regent and ruled with his young son. She and her son Amenhotep I inaugurated the workman’s village at Deir el-Medina on the West Bank of the Nile at Luxor. it was believe that she died at the age of 65 as she outlive her son who died at the age of 35, both were worshiped as gods and Amenhotep I was known a ‘Lord of the Village.
GREAT AFRICAN GENIUSES
Imhotep was also celebrated as Doctor, Architect, High Priest, Scribe and Vizier to King Djoser. His name Imhotep simply means "the one that comes in peace". He was the second king of Egypt's third dynasty and reign from 2630–2611 BC. He was also seen as the world's first named architect who built Egypt's first pyramid. it was believed tht he may have had a hand in the building of Sekhemkhet's unfinished pyramid, and also possibly with the establishment of the Edfu Temple, his writings were in medical text, to further more he diagnosed and
treated over 200 diseases, 15 diseases of the abdomen, 11 of the bladder, 10 of the rectum, 29 of the eyes, and 18 of the skin, hair, nails and tongue. Imhotep treated tuberculosis, gallstones, appendicitis,gout and arthritis. He also performed surgery and practiced some dentistry. Imhotep made medicine from plants this was from Sir William Osler. After 100 years of his death he was elevated to a medical demigod and after 2000 years he was made full god, and replaced Nefertum in the great triad at Memphis. Imhotep was, together with Amenhotep, the only mortal
Egyptians that ever reached the position of full gods. he was later worshiped by the then early Christians. He was also worshiped even in Greece where he was identified with their god of medicine
Amenhotep IV was better for his traditional religious leaderships by preferred Aten, the sun god that was worshipped in earlier times. He married non-royal blood who he called Nefertiti meanin “Beautiful is the Beauty of Aten.” He also changed his name to Akhenaten, meaning “He Who is of Service to Aten” Akhenaten’s innovation was to worship the Aten in its own right.
GREAT AFRICAN WOMEN IN POWER
Hatshepsut was the first female Pharaoh of Egypt who ruled in the 18th Dynasty. She married her own brother (Thuthmose II ) who ascended to the throne after his dad death and according to Egyptian tradition , to become a Pharaoh, the man had to marry a female of royal blood, often a sister, half sister or other near relative. Thuthmose II died leaving Hatshepsut and a son (Thuthmose III) by another wife who was too young to rule so Hatshepsut declared herself as the regent and later on made herself pharaoh in the history of Egypt. She continue the works of her father by repairing. most of her works and contributions were destroyed when Thuthmose III took over as Pharaoh when she died. She ruled for 20 years and no one knows if she was murdered, died or retired from politics to let Thuthmose III and her second daughter rule, but she disappeared when Thuthmose III became Pharaoh in his own right. Her body has not been found, so it is difficult to prove one way or another.
Queen Tiye was also another inspire ring woman from Egypt who was married to Amenhotep III, she was the mother Amenhotep IV all of Egypt. Married at an early age her husband gladly adored her and lavishly temples and artificial lakes were created in her name. she also changed the Egyptian fashion through her influence that she exerted in the kingdom and altered the royal view of a royal woman. She later became the Secretary General of state when her husband’s physical and mental powers deteriorated with age. With this position she maintain all the political powers and She averted key national crises. She also redirected political decisions to her attention when her son Akenhaton neglected his political duties.
Yaa Asantewa, the Queen Mother of Ejisu, was one of the female leaders who forght against forigen invaders. As a young woman and a queen she saw the fear in the eyes of her opposite sex chief and she declared war against the british who came for their king ( Asantehene) and were demanding for the powerful Asante stool which ( the Asante’s) hold there powere and strength. The war then bears her name and she made in roles into the british army. Eventhough she lost the war and was the last to be captured she was the one who open the door for the freedom for the Asantes and and gave the examples for other woriors to follow.
Queen Nzingha was another strong charismatic but brilliant military leader. Coming from Angola to be precise Ndongo kingdom, she rose to power in 17th antic slave trade was steadily growing, Queen Nzingah strongly opposed the trade but her own brother who was a king in the kingdom was involve in the trade. She later displayed her iron power at a conference to end the slave trade between the Portuguese when she was sent to represent the king. rather the whites offered sites to themselves and left the potential queen but quickly the royal carpet was roll for her and one of attendant made himself a seat available for her to sit down. In In 1623 she became the queen due to the death of his brother. immediately she became the queen she warned the portuegese to stop the trade despite the treaty that was signed, and warned of a possible war. she was the first black nationalist because she made her territories available escaping slaves and changed all the various ethnic and cultural differences of the people in the Angolan region . She sent her men into the Portuegeese army where they train and to spy their mode of operation and later got their strategy and later got hold of their weapons to fight them in return. In 1626 Nzingah’s strong hold Caunza was captured and forcing her to go into exile but while in exile she became the queen of Matamba. in 1627 she came back to recapture Caunza with a strong army and became the queen for the two nations. 1659 she signed a peace treaty with the Portuguese and spent the rest of her life reconstructing Angola she later died in 1663. Her legacy will never be forgotten in the fight against black history.
Queen Amina was also another military leader who was the daughter of Queen Bakwa, she was born in the hausaland of Zazzau which is now called Nigeria. at the age of 16 her military potentials were spoted and she was given the tittle magajiya. It was believe that Amina was the architect of the earthen walls around the city. Sultan Muhammad Bello of Sokoto stated that, "She
made war upon these countries and overcame them entirely so that the people of Katsina paid tribute
to her and the men of Kano [and]... also made war on cities of Bauchi till her kingdom reached to the sea
in the south and the west." Eventhough she never became a queen she reign from 1536 to 1573 she was a leading princess and she was the first in the Hausaland to own eunuchs and kola nuts
CANDACES OF MEROE
These are great women who led their people into battle against Alexander of Macedonia even in their old age
GREAT MILITARY LEADERS AND EMPIRE:
Shaka is a zulu word “ishaka” which means an intestinal beetle on which menstrual irregularities were usually blamed. The marriage didn't work out Nandi and Senzangakhona and so Shakazulu was born out of Marriage and it is conceded as a bad practice in the Zulu culture. Shaka and the mom were not welcome to the Elangeni tribe. out of suffering, humiliation and Shaka being called names like the farherless one and the rest, Shaka and the mom decided to move to Mthetwa tribe which was lead by Chief Dingiswayo, that is where Shaka trained to be a warrior for six years. At the age of 23 Dingiswayo saw the potentials in Shaka and made him the leader Mthetwa army. He trained the army with the strictest deciplined and a violation of his rules comes with death punishment. He changed the army’s weapons by shortening the spear and making the shield heavier, the army was made to train on bare foot to make them strong. He kills any of the worriors who return from war with a spear at his back because he believes that a warior have to run to his enemies first and face them not to turn his back and run away. Shaka revolutionize the army through his techniques. King Senzangakhona died in 1816. Shaka and his warriors went to take the kingdom by force because he knew he was royalty from what his mother had told him. Shaka continue to destroy and to win battles against other tribes who try to invade and he was well respected. When news came to Shaka that the mother was dead he executed 7000 people to be killed and 3 months months moaning of hunger and starvation was observed in the Zulu community in honor of the dead mother. with this treatment he lost control over the kingdom worios and enemies were rising against him. His half brother repeatedly stabbed him to death on 22nd 1828, he was belive to be 41 years old before his dearth. shaka left no child because he saw them as a potential rivals. Shakazulu’s father Senzangakhona who was a chieftain of a small clan of the Zulu community, Shaka lather succeeded the dad as a king. Senzangakhona married i6 wives, Shaka’s mom was the third and gave birth to 14 sons but the daughters are unknown. Senzangakhona means” he who acts with good reason” from the zulu language. He later died in 1816. Shakazulu’s mother was called Nandi kaBebe a child of a deceased chieftain of the Elangeni clan. She was Born in 1760 and died in 1827and Shaka was her only child was Shakazulu. She died a year before her own son (Shakazulu’s) death.
Obiri Yeboa was the founder of Kumasi, he was also the leader of the Oyoko clan the subset of the Akan peoples in the seventeenth century. He made Kumasi the capital over all the four states which includes Nsuta, Juaben, Bekwai, Kokofu and later Mampong, he again united the five states and made it asante union in 1660 and 1670 . He later proclaimed himself as the paramount chief of the asante union. Obiri Yeboa died in battle sometime in 1670
He was later succeeded by the nephew called Osei Tutu. He and his priest friend Okomfo Anokye introduced the Asante Golden Stool as a religio-political symbol of the unity of the Oyoko union, he also provided the union with a constitution and made the asantehene the absolute ruler of the empire. 1699 and 1701 he defeated Empire of Denkyira in a war and gain access to the Elmina castle and became a major player in the slave and gun trade. He also incorporated the Akims into the union in 1701 and later died in the Akim war.He was succeeded by his nephew who was a great warrior called Opoku Ware, Between 1723 and 1744 he conquered Bono-Tekyiman to the north, Akim, Akwamu, Akwapim, and the Ga-Adangbe states to the South and Accra to the coast. From 1744 to 1746 Asante defeated Gonja and Dagomba in the Volta Basin and died in 1750. succeeded by Kusi Obodum, his uncle who changed all the hereditary positions and made it appointive post. The empire continue to grow under the Osei Kwame (1777-1801) and Osei Bonsu (1801-1824). The empire reached its peak under the latter Asantehene.
Sundiata was the youngest of eleven males. He was born to Nare and his second wife Sogolon Conde as a cripple After the death of his father, Sundiata and his mother fled to Malinke where they were offered refuge. Sumanguru of the Kante Dynasty killed and started rulling Mali. Sundiata grew stronger and began to rule the Mali Kingdom while steadily gaining power and troop strength. In 1235, Sundiata and Sumanguru met in battle. Both were sorcerers and thier magic would determine the outcome. Sundiata had the strongest power and he defeated Sumanguru. He was then declared as the founder of Mali empire.
These great African leaders played IMPORTANT roles in their respective counties, empires and kingdoms. They also portrayed some common character traits or actions that made their personality unique .
THE GREAT UNIFIERS:
GREAT AFRICAN GENIUSES
GREAT AFRICAN WOMEN IN POWER
GREAT MILITARY LEADERS AND EMPIRE: