Culture and Kingdoms of West Africa

Culture and Kingdoms of West Africa - Villegas Middle...

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Villegas Middle School Fall 2007 Mr. Clutter
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Mali Ghana Nubia Songhay Africa was the home of four  great civilizations; Nubia,  Ghana, Mali and Songhay.   Enter Enter Enter Enter
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Ghana developed in West Africa between the  Niger (NI-jhur) and the Gambia Rivers. It  was an important kingdom there from about  AD300 to about 1100. The rivers helped  Ghana to grow rich because they were used to  transport goods and develop trade.  Ghana  also collected taxes from traders who passed  through the kingdom. The people called their  nation Wagadu; we know it as Ghana --that  was the word for war chief.  
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The kingdom of Ghana probably began when several  clans of the Soninke people of west Africa came  together under the leadership of a great king named  Dinga Cisse.   Ghana had few natural resources except salt and  gold. They were also very good at making things from  iron. Ghanaian warriors used iron tipped spears to  subdue their neighbors, who fought with weapons  made of stone, bone, and wood.
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"The King . . .(wears). . . necklaces round his neck and bracelets on his forearms and he puts on a high cap decorated with gold and wrapped in a turban of fine cotton. He (meets people) in a domed pavilion around which stand ten horses covered with gold- embroidered materials…and on his right, are the sons of the (lesser) kings of his country, wearing splendid garments and their hair plaited with gold. At the door of the pavilion are dogs of excellent pedigree. Round their necks they wear collars of gold and silver, studded with a number of balls of the same metals."
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Ghana became a rich and powerful nation, especially when the camel  began to be used as a source of transport. Ghana relied on trade and  trade was made faster and bigger with the use of the camel.
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After 700 AD, the religion of Islam began to spread over northern Africa. Followers of  this religion are called Muslims. Muslim warriors came into Ghana and fought with the  non-Islamic people there. This weakened the great civilization of Ghana.  Local warriors  then decided to break away from the power of Ghana and form their own local kingdoms. 
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This note was uploaded on 11/23/2011 for the course HIST 202 taught by Professor Nokes during the Fall '11 term at BYU.

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Culture and Kingdoms of West Africa - Villegas Middle...

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