Ancient Ghana - Cynthia Okoye History 2250 Research Paper...

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Cynthia Okoye History 2250 Research Paper April 20, 2007 Ancient Ghana: Rise to Power When people hear the name Ancient Ghana they automatically relate it to the Ghana of today but in actuality Ancient Ghana is in no way related to the modern day Ghana that we know. They are not geographically or even ethnically related. Ancient Ghana is 400 miles North- West of modern Ghana; it covers what we now call Northern Senegal and Southern Mauritania. The name Ghana is the Soninke word for ruler (Craig p.371). As we look back into time we find that the origins of Ancient Ghana are unclear. In this paper we will be discussing how Ancient Ghana got its wealth and power. Ancient Ghana has been a great mystery to archeologists in the past and is still a bit of a mystery today; what we do know of this ancient kingdom comes from the various Arabic texts which dated from about 800 to 1650. These texts have been translated, quoted, summarized
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and interpreted in great detail. Ghana’s existence is known to be prior to 800 and was centered on western Sahel in what we now know as southern Mauritania and western Mali. Ghana’s major reason for being established was due to the Trans-Saharan trade; it lay at the southern end of the caravan routes which brought salt as well as copper and cloth from across the Sahara and lay at the northern edge of the West African gold fields (Munson p.457). This trade was what established Ghana as a powerful kingdom and also helped in gaining wealth for the up and coming empire. To take Ghana back into time we must go back to the end of the first millennium. Ancient Ghana then went on to flourish for about two centuries. The capital of Ghana was Kumbi also known as Kumbi Saleh, which was located at the deserts edge. Kumbi was well sited for the Saharan and Sahelian trade networks (Craig p.371). There were a number of Soninke people and a Mande speaking people who lived in the region bordering the Sahara. These two groups of people came together under the leadership of one man named Diabe Sisse. There are countless stories of this man and
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This note was uploaded on 04/17/2008 for the course BIO 101 taught by Professor Schau during the Spring '08 term at North Park University.

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Ancient Ghana - Cynthia Okoye History 2250 Research Paper...

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