AFRICA By Taylor Gabel

Africa is the second largest continent in both land mass and population. It is known most prominently for being the birthplace of the human race, more specifically in central Eastern Africa. Africa contains the worlds longest river, the Nile, as well as the worlds tallest free standing mountain, Mount Kilimanjaro. Each country in Africa has its own unique culture, making it hard to generalize things such as economics, environment, and government systems. Africa is envied by many for their beautiful and diverse wildlife, something that cannot be figure anywhere else.

History

The history of Africa begins with the arrival of homosapiens, with early civilization in the Kingdom of Kush. During the early years, Islam (the religion of the Muslims) quickly spread west from Arabia to Egypt. Following the Second Battle of Dongo in the mid 7th century, Muslim Arab slave trade began. It didn't take long for Europeans to join in on the trade, sending Africans overseas. Colonization developed rapidly during the late 19th century. Africa was said to have around 10,000 different states, each with their own distinct customs and languages. Struggles for independence were met with decolonization following the Second World War. African history is often questioned due to the lack of written documentation.

The Nile River

The Nile river runs about 4,160 miles in length. It begins in Burundi (Southern Africa) and flows North through Egypt, eventually draining into the Mediterranean Sea. Although Lake Victoria is often considered to be the source of the river, it may actually be the many streams that flow into it. According to Mandy Barrow, editor of the Ancient Egypt site, "the name Nile comes from the Greek "Helios", which means valley. Egyptians used the Nile for transportation, water, and food. They relied on the heavy floods to sustain their crops since rainfall in Egypt is practically non-existent. These floods were a result of melting snow and heavy summer rains in the Ethiopian Mountains. The Nile is a main discussion point in many geopolitical conflicts. Let's watch this video to see why.

Mount Kilimanjaro

Kilimanjaro is the tallest mountain in Africa standing at 19,341 feet. Most probably wouldn't guess that the mountain is actually a huge stratovolcano! It has been forming for close to one million years, and is composed of ash, lave, pumice, and tephra. Mount Kili is made up of three volcanic cones: Kibo, Mawensi, and Shira. While Mawensi and Shira are extinct, Kibo is dormant, meaning it could erupt. Close to 300,000 people attempt to climb Kilimanjaro each year. Ideas of this adventure began with Yoanas Lauwo and Ludwig Purtscheller, the first team to successfully complete the climb. The mountains of Kilimanjaro provide its attemptees with five different routes, each of which hold a challenge of its very own.

African Wildlife

Africa is widely known for their beautiful and vast wildlife. This continent holds some of the fastest, largest, and weirdest animals, many of which are now endangered species. Four of five of the world fastest animals can be found in Africa alone, with cheetahs leading the pack at 70 miles per hour. Some of you may have heard of the "big 5". This refers to five of Africa's greatest animals: the lion, leopard, elephant, buffalo, and rhino. There are over 1,100 species of mammals and 2,600 species of birds living on the land. Giraffes, hippopotamuses, and zebras, are just a few herbivores that inhabit the area. Below I have attached a live video highlight of an African watering hole.

Credits:

Yellow and black picture of Africa https://goo.gl/images/OBHVqb African diversity https://goo.gl/images/TLCfvR Slavery https://goo.gl/images/Jg1bWM African women https://goo.gl/images/86nX8g Nile river https://goo.gl/images/6wpn7q Mount Kilimanjaro https://goo.gl/images/9mk41C Top of kili https://goo.gl/images/lS422c Kilimanjaro with sunset https://goo.gl/images/gFnuS7 Lions https://goo.gl/images/y99zYR

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