African Kingdoms Lauren Hammett

Ghana is located on west Africa's gulf. The coastline of Ghana is mostly a sandy shore backed by plains and intersects many rivers and streams. The northern part of Ghana has many high plains.There climate is very tropical. There highest temperatures are in march and there lowest are in August.

There religion was a mixture of supernatural and spiritual powers. They believed that plants and animals have spirits. They also ancestor veneration. They believed that if they neglected their ancestors they would have bad luck. In the 9th century Islam was introduced and many began to practice it. Then in the 15th century Christianity was spread throughout Ghana.

Ghana would trade with the British who were the center of the slave trade. Slaves were usually sold for goods and had usually been either captured or kidnapped in tribal warfare.

Ghana traded massive amounts of gold, ivory, and slaves. They had imports such as salt, horses, cloth, swards, and books from the Europeans and North Africans. They used a system called silent barter where they traded without actually seeing or speaking to anyone. This helped prevent wars.

There king was called Ghana, or war chief. Whatever he said happened. He controlled everything religion, military, and trade. There first king was Dinga Cisse.

They spoke Soninke and Mande. Islam influenced a lot of there culture.

Today the capital of Ghana is Accra. They are a presidential republic. Their independence day, from the UK, is March 6, 1959. They are facing economic problems such as lack of energy.

Mali is located in Western Africa. It is just south of the Sahara Desert. It is dry in the winter and rainy in the summer.

The religion of Africa was Muslim. In 1312 Mansa Musa made Islam the official religion. He did not force people to convert to Islam. Mansa Musa took the pilgrimage to Hajj and it strengthened his empire and also created new relationships with Egypt.

Slave trade and labor provided a lot for Mali. Slaves played important roles such as royal administrators and soldiers. A slave actually ruled the empire from 1298-1308. His name was Sakura.

They traded gold and most of it was traded through the Sahara desert.

The history of Mali describes how they were divided into 12 clans. Each clan had its own king or mansa. They often went to war against one another. The founder of the Mali empire was Sundiata Keita.

There were many small tribes within the mali empire but they were all considered part of the Mande people.Most the people were divided into castes. The most respected caste was farmers because they provided food. Below them where the artisans.

Mali is the eighth largest country today. Most of the population lives in villages, towns, or cities. Because of drought people are being forced to move into cities.

Songhai is located in western Africa along the Niger river.Mali is the eighth largest country today. Most of the population lives in villages, towns, or cities. Because of drought people are being forced to move into cities. In its peak it stretched over 1,000 miles and its capital was the city of Gao.

Islam is their main religion. Muslims came from the north i early 1010 and the Songhai people became Muslim. Some people still practice magic and they are called the Sohanti.

Slave trade was very important in the Songhai Empire. They were used to transport goods across the Sahara desert to morocco and the middle East. They were usually captives of war.

Trade had a major impact on Songhai. Kingdoms built up strong armies to protect their trade. Long distance trade helped Songhai because travelers would need a place to stay after their long journeys so they would pay people in the town.

Sunni Ali was the first prince of Songhai. Then in 1493 Askia Muhammad became ruler of Songhai. The empire was divided into 5 provinces led by a governor.

The culture was a mix of West African beliefs and Islam. Their law was based on Islam.

Axum is on the southern coast of the red sea.

The Axum empire was one of the first groups to have Christianity as their official religion. It is still their religion to this day. They were polytheistic before Christianity.

Axum was the center of trade. People would come from everywhere to trade there. People would travel from the Roman Empire and India.

Axum lasted from around 400 BCE to 940 CE. It was at its peak under the leadership of King Ezana. They became a major trade center, conquered the kingdom of Kush, and converted to Christianity.

Axum became a blend of many cultures because of its trading system.They were influenced by the Romans, Egyptians, Arabs, and Greeks. Christianity had a major influence on the culture too.

Axum is now a city in Ethiopia. It is a small city with a population of 50,000 people.


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