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Not only commercial interests but France's conflict with England led the Directory to send Napoleon Bonaparte to Egypt in 1798. The general had been warned by the traveler Volney that if the French invaded Egypt, they would find themselves at war with the British, the Ottoman empire, and the Muslims. Napoleon gathered a force of 36,000 veterans and hundreds of civilian experts in 400 ships, which reached Alexandria just after Nelson's British fleet had left there. On July 2, 1798 a French army quickly stormed Alexandria and read Bonaparte's proclamation that he respected Islam, that he had destroyed the Pope and the bigoted Knights of Malta, and that they had come only to terminate the tyranny of the Mamluks. Murad Bey persuaded Ibrahim and Sa'id Abu Bekir Pasha that they should resist the French invasion; but in the battle by the pyramids the French killed about 2,000 Egyptians while only losing ten of their men. Murad fled south up the Nile to Upper Egypt, while Ibrahim and the Pasha deserted Cairo for Palestine. On the first of August, Nelson's squadron returned and destroyed the French fleet at Abuqir, leaving ships to blockade the harbor. Although Napoleon claimed to be acting on behalf of the Ottoman empire, the French did not even have an ambassador in Istanbul. The British had Spencer Smith there, and he formed a coalition with the Ottomans and Russia. On September 11 Sultan Selim III (r. 1789-1807) declared war on France.
The French levied money from the merchants and artisans of Alexandria and Cairo, and Mamluk properties were confiscated. Everyone was required to register their properties with the government or lose them, and new urban taxes were imposed. After Napoleon had the local administrator Muhammad al-Kurayyim executed as a traitor, Egyptians in Cairo rose up in October and killed 300 French while losing more than two thousand in two days of insurrection; ten shaykhs were beheaded. In February 1799 Napoleon led 13,000 troops and stormed al-'Arish. After Jaffa killed his messenger, the town was taken; then Napoleon had two or three thousand prisoners shot. General Desaix led French troops into Upper Egypt and occupied the Red Sea port of Qusayr in May 1799. Napoleon's siege of Acre failed, and his battered army returned to Cairo in June. Napoleon secretly left Egypt in August with a few officers, leaving General Kléber in command. He wanted to evacuate Egypt and began negotiating with the Ottoman vizier in December. That month an Ottoman army reconquered al-'Arish. A month later an agreement was made that the French would be escorted out of Egypt by the Ottoman allies; but the British government rejected the Convention of al-'Arish, and in March 1800 the French defeated the Ottoman army at Heliopolis, causing another insurrection in Cairo. Kléber besieged Cairo for several weeks; after an assault resulted in capitulation, he punished the city with fines.
Kléber was assassinated in June 1800 and was replaced by General Jacques Menou, who wanted to colonize Egypt. He converted to Islam and married an Egyptian. He tried to reform the land taxes and the judicial system. In March 1801 British general Abercromby landed with a force of about 15,000 British troops, followed by about 7,000 Ottomans at Abuqir. Abercromby was killed; but as the British marched toward Cairo, an army of 7,000 from Palestine led by the Ottoman vizier Yusuf Ziya Pasha entered the Delta. French general Belliard in Cairo surrendered on June 27, and his forces were evacuated in August. General Menou surrendered at Alexandria, and his French forces also left Egypt. The extensive research the French did was published in twenty volumes as Description de l'Egypte. The significant discovery of the trilingual inscription on the Rosetta Stone facilitated the deciphering of ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics, providing the literary keys to much ancient knowledge.
Ten thousand Ottoman soldiers had not been paid and looted Egypt. Amid the breakdown of law and order, British general Hutchinson tried to protect the Mamluk beys after Yusuf Pasha killed and arrested many of them. In the March 1802 Treaty of Amiens the British agreed to withdraw from Egypt by July; but General Stuart did not pull British forces out until March 1803, taking with him Mamluk bey Muhammad Alfi, who had driven people out of Upper Egypt with his excessive taxation. To curtail Mamluk power the Ottoman sultan had decreed that Circassian slave boys were no longer allowed to be imported and sold in Egypt; the beys were assigned to the province of Aswan but were supplied with arms by Stuart. Khusrav Pasha imposed arbitrary taxes despite a weak economy and sent Albanian troops led by Tahir Pasha to pursue the Mamluks in the provinces. When the Albanians returned to Cairo for their pay, Khusrav had his troops fire on them. The Albanians bombarded the viceroy's palace, and Khusrav fled to Damietta.
When Tahir had trouble paying Turkish officers, he was murdered. His deputy Muhammad 'Ali formed an alliance with Bardisi Bey, and they captured Khusrav. The next viceroy 'Ali Jezairly arrived in July; but he stayed in Alexandria, because Ibrahim Bey told him he could only bring an escort of 200 men into Cairo. The Mamluks controlled the grain market, and people in Cairo were starving. Bardisi ordered Muhammad 'Ali to break in and distribute grain, making the latter a hero. Jezairly demanded the Mamluk beys submit, but the Mamluks and Albanians put him to death in January 1804. Muhammad 'Ali ordered his soldiers to stop the looting and arrest anyone molesting civilians. When Alfi returned, the Albanians demanded pay from Bardisi, who sent them to plunder Alfi. Unsatisfied, Muhammad 'Ali attacked the house of Bardisi, who fled. Muhammad 'Ali became popular for stopping an exorbitant tax and for having the Albanians troops drive the Mamluks out of Cairo. He released Khusrav and proclaimed him viceroy; but the Albanian captains quickly deported Khusrav to Istanbul. The Cairo leaders selected Alexandria's Pasha Khurshid as viceroy, and he was confirmed by imperial edict in April. Khurshid brought in Kurdish Delhis, and their looting, kidnapping, raping, and killing alienated the people of Cairo until finally the chief judge and leaders persuaded Muhammad 'Ali to take over as viceroy (wali) in May 1805; this was accepted by the Sultan two months later.
In August 1805 Muhammad 'Ali arranged for the Mamluks to enter Cairo and had them ambushed by his soldiers; but the Albanians' attack on the beys under Ibrahim Bey at Giza failed. Next Muhammad 'Ali sent an army under Hussain Pasha to drive the Kurdish Delhis out of Egypt to Syria. Further expeditions attacked the Mamluks and collected taxes from the peasants (fallahin). Merchandise was seized, and the Christian and Jewish minorities especially suffered. In July 1806 a Turkish admiral arrived at Alexandria to remove Muhammad 'Ali. Alfi had offered 1,500 purses for power but sent the envoy to Bardisi and Ibrahim for two-thirds of it. Muhammad 'Ali agreed to pay 4,000 purses to be confirmed as viceroy and borrowed it from wives of Mamluks and wealthy Christians.
After Bardisi and Alfi died, in 1807 Muhammad 'Ali sent an army to subdue the Mamluks in Upper Egypt. In March a British brigade led by General Wauchope landed at Rosetta; but Governor Ali Bey's forces defeated them, killing ninety and capturing twenty. Muhammad 'Ali at Asyut asked the Mamluks to help him drive out the British, and in April the Turks won a bloody battle against the British, who were led by General Stewart. In exchange for the return of his prisoners, General Frazer evacuated Alexandria in September 1807. The next year Muhammad 'Ali agreed to sell grain to the British army. He had triumphed; but he was shot at by his own troops, and his palace was attacked by Ottoman and Albanian troops demanding back pay. He promised them three months and a bonus when they gained control over Upper Egypt. He granted Shahin Bey the province of Fayum. Muhammad 'Ali's oldest son Ibrahim had been held hostage for a year in Istanbul; but in 1807 he returned to become defterdar (treasurer) for the next six years. Later when Ibrahim Pasha was governing Upper Egypt, he followed his father's orders in having the Coptic moneychanger Muallim Ghali executed for opposing a new tax on date palms.
Mamluks were allowed to govern in Upper Egypt and paid taxes to Muhammad 'Ali. In 1809 he began taxing the waqf or rizqa lands that had been set aside for religious purposes to pay for mosques and madrasas (schools). 'Umar Makram led a revolt that failed, and Muhammad 'Ali exiled his former ally to Damietta. As Muhammad 'Ali got more control over Upper Egypt, he gained revenue by exporting its grain. Egypt began building a fleet of eighteen ships for the Red Sea in 1809. The Ottoman sultan had been asking Muhammad 'Ali to send forces against the Wahhabi revolt in Arabia, and the Pasha of Egypt announced a ceremony to invest his 16-year-old son Tusun with the command. On March 1, 1811 the 24 Mamluk beys and 60 agents he invited were massacred by the Albanians. There and in their houses more than a thousand Mamluks may have been murdered, and Muhammad 'Ali expropriated their tax farms (iltizamat). Then Ibrahim was sent to dispossess other tax farmers (multazimun) also and to seize all the rizqa lands in Upper Egypt. In seven years Muhammad 'Ali had tripled his annual revenue, and trade with Europe was increasing. In 1813 he ordered a survey of all agricultural land in Egypt in order to regulate the collection of taxes.
Tusun's army captured Mecca and Medina early in 1813; but Muhammad 'Ali went to the Hijaz himself in August and replaced the less competent Tusun with his oldest son Ibrahim. Wali Muhammad 'Ali sent the mamluk Latif Agha to present the keys of Mecca and Medina to the sultan in Istanbul, and they plotted to replace the wali of Egypt; but while Muhammad 'Ali was in Arabia, his deputy Muhammad Lazughlu had Pasha Latif Agha beheaded in Cairo. When the wali returned, the Albanians were upset by his reforms making their tax farms unprofitable and by his modernizing military uniforms and discipline, imitating the French. An assassination attempt was foiled, and the wali ordered compensation to the merchants for the frustrated rebels' looting. Ibrahim captured the Wahhabi capital of Dariya after a six-month siege in 1818.
Egypt began manufacturing its own gunpowder and armaments in 1815. The same year government factories began weaving cotton, jute and silk, prohibiting private looms. The wali monopolized staple foods and cash crops, such as cotton, which was grown in the Delta. Fallahin had to sell their grain to the government at its fixed price. Merchants worked for the government or went out of business. Children were brought into the factories and were trained to be workers. In 1820 the Viceroy ordered all foreign merchants to pay their debts or leave Egypt. In the 1820s embargoes blocked the importation of foreign textiles, except for luxuries. By 1825 total imports into Egypt had risen to $5,043,000, but total exports were valued at $10,636,529.
Muhammad 'Ali modernized government bureaucracy according to Ottoman and French models. He put large numbers to work using corvée labor, improving and adding canals. The new canal from the Nile to Alexandria was named after Sultan Mahmud II and was completed in 1820. The wali sent his son Isma'il Pasha to capture slaves from Sudan, which was made a colony; but of the 20,000 slaves taken to Aswan for his modern army, only 3,000 were still alive in 1824. Funj sultan Badi VI surrendered in 1821 at Sennar, while another force led by Treasurer Muhammad Bey Khusrav was conquering Kordofan. Distant Darfur could not be subjugated and was not annexed by Egypt until 1874. Isma'il on his way through Shindi in 1822 demanded $30,000 and 6,000 slaves in two days. When the local Ja'liyin chief Nimir protested that was too much, Isma'il hit him with his pipe. In revenge for this insult, Nimir had Isma'il and his staff burned in a dwelling. Khusrav came and used firearms to suppress the uprising with massacres.
Muhammad 'Ali conscripted 4,000 men from Upper Egypt and built up his army to 130,000, using half his budget to pay them. Originally conscription was only supposed to be for three years; but continuing wars kept soldiers so long that by 1835 Ibrahim suggested limiting it to only fifteen years. Ottoman Turks were considered superior, and peasants speaking Arabic were not promoted above the rank of captain. Conscription in Lower Egypt caused a rebellion in 1823, and the next year 30,000 men and women revolted in Upper Egypt; but the troops sent remained loyal and quelled the rebellion by killing 4,000 in two weeks. The modern army proved its effectiveness by defeating a Wahhabi force ten times its size in the Hijaz. An explosion in the powder magazine of the Cairo citadel killed 4,000 on March 24, 1824. Disgruntled Albanian troops were blamed, but a modern battalion restored order.
In 1821 the Sultan had asked Egypt to help fight the Greeks, and the next year they suppressed the revolt on the island of Crete. Ibrahim Pasha led 17,000 trained troops that fought more successfully than the Ottomans and occupied the Morea. The Egyptian army captured Choron, Navarino, and Tripolitza in 1825, Missolonghi the next year, and Athens in June 1827. A quarrel between Muhammad 'Ali and Ottoman fleet commander Khusrav got the latter removed; but on October 20, 1827 the French-British-Russian fleet destroyed the Egyptian-Turkish navy at Navarino Bay. The Egyptian army left the Morea the next year. The wali and his son Ibrahim blamed the Sultan for refusing to accept European mediation for Greek independence. Muhammad 'Ali ordered a new navy built at Bulaq and Alexandria. Sultan Mahmud had promised the wali part of Syria but gave him only rebellious Crete. Egypt had established government printing about 1822, and in 1828 Muhammad 'Ali authorized the publishing of an official gazette. A council of 156 advisors with Ibrahim as chairman was established the next year.
In November 1831 the Egyptian army and navy led by Ibrahim Pasha invaded Syria by landing at Jaffa with 30,000 troops and besieging Acre. Muhammad 'Ali told the Ottoman envoy that Acre was his; he would stop there if the Sultan agreed. If not, he would take Damascus and stop there if that was accepted; if not, he would take Aleppo. Ibrahim's army stormed Acre in May 1832, killing 5,600 of its 6,000 men. They took Damascus in June and marched on Aleppo in July, capturing eight pashas and killing 2,000 men near Homs. Ibrahim invaded Anatolia and captured Konya in December 1832. He wanted to march to Istanbul; but European pressure and a letter from his father made him stop at Kutaya. In the treaty of May 1833 Ibrahim was made wali of Acre, Damascus, Tripoli, and Aleppo and tax collector for Adana in Anatolia; but Egypt still had to pay annual tribute to the Ottoman sultan. Conscription and new taxes to pay for the occupation caused rebellion in Syria, and within a few years at least 60,000 soldiers had deserted. Ibrahim followed his father's policy of religious toleration; this was welcomed by the many Christians, but it was resented by the majority Muslims.
With so many men in the Egyptian army, women had to work, mostly in the Viceroy's factories. Prostitution spread disease, and in 1834 it was banned in the cities. Following a plague in 1835, Egypt established free clinics in urban areas, and a new hospital with a medical school was built at Cairo in 1837. The autocratic Viceroy allowed the private manufacture of cloth in 1835. Apparently he discovered that private incentives were more profitable, but he taxed them highly. Egypt had 29 cotton factories in 1837; but war, plague and perhaps competition had reduced the number of factories to 15 by 1840.
In 1838 Sultan Mahmud ordered Muhammad 'Ali to dismantle his fleet and reduce Egypt's army; he refused, and 70,000 Ottoman troops invaded Syria in April 1839. Ibrahim Pasha won his last great victory at Nezib, capturing 10,000 prisoners. Sultan Mahmud died before hearing of the defeat, and his 16-year-old son Abdul Mejid succeeded him. Two weeks later the Ottoman navy sailed to Alexandria and defected to Egypt. Envoys of Britain, France, Russia, Prussia, and Austria intervened diplomatically. England's foreign minister Henry Palmerston wanted to curtail Muhammad 'Ali's power lest the Ottoman empire turn to Russia for protection, and he got the young Sultan to agree to the Balta Liman treaty that banned monopolies in the Ottoman empire. In September 1840 Charles Napier led a British squadron to Beirut and demanded that the Egyptian army evacuate the Levant. Ibrahim led his reduced and starving army of 20,000 back to Egypt. In 1841 Muhammad 'Ali accepted an imperial edict that recognized his authority in Egypt and established that he would be succeeded by his oldest male relative. The annual tribute to the Ottoman empire was set at 18,000 purses (9 million francs), and the Egyptian army was not to exceed 18,000 men. Egypt was to be under Ottoman imperial law and could not build warships without permission from the Sultan.
After the end of government monopolies, large private estates increased the use of arable land from about ten percent in 1818 to about 45 percent in 1844. In 1836 the uhda system allowed the wealthy to take over lands where the taxes were in arrears. By 1837 these estates could be inherited, and in 1842 they became private property. Thus Muhammad 'Ali let the elite acquire these assets, and by 1845 his family owned 18.8 percent of the land. Muhammad 'Ali declined in old age. Ibrahim Pasha took over the government in 1848 but died a few weeks later.
Muhammad 'Ali died the next year and already had been succeeded by his grandson 'Abbas (1848-1854). He continued the autocratic rule of Egypt, and in 1851 he agreed to pay increased tribute to Istanbul in order to reestablish his right to confirm some death penalties. 'Abbas was suspicious of European influence, and he told the British that the railway to be built between Cairo and Alexandria would be financed and administered by the Egyptian government. In 1854 'Abbas sent money and troops to help the Ottoman empire in the Crimean War. He and his successor Sa'id maintained the Egyptian army at about 50,000 men despite the 1841 edict. 'Abbas was criticized for personal cruelty, and in July 1854 he died, probably murdered by two of his slaves.
Muhammad Sa'id (r. 1854-63) was the fourth son of Muhammad 'Ali and became viceroy of Egypt. He allowed free trade, and he ordered taxes collected in coin rather than in kind, except in Upper Egypt. He borrowed money to construct canals, railways, bridges, harbors, and telegraph lines. In 1854 Sa'id gave his friend Ferdinand de Lesseps land free of taxes for ten years for the Suez Canal and purchased 64,000 shares. The British opposed French construction of the isthmus canal and persuaded the Ottoman sultan to withhold permission. In 1858 de Lesseps went ahead anyway and sold shares for 200 million francs (8 million pounds), mostly in France and some more to Egypt. Unlike his predecessor, Said welcomed European participation in Egypt, and he allowed them to use the Capitulations to try cases involving Europeans in consular courts. He trusted European bankers, who made 21,876,000 pounds in fees and commissions, about a third of the loans to Egypt. For centuries corvée labor had been used to clear irrigation canals, and this continued. Slavery remained a part of Egyptian culture, as many slaves brought from the Greek war chose to remain slaves in Egypt rather than return. Slaves in Egypt often considered themselves better off than the peasants subject to the corvée. Said conscripted all parts of the population, but Christian Copts resisted military service. Some Bedouins refused to farm as settlers and went back to raiding. Said Pasha died in January 1863 and was succeeded by his nephew Isma'il.
Isma'il Pasha (r. 1863-1879) at first benefited from a four-fold increase in the price of cotton because of the civil war in the United States. He used lobbying money (bakshish) to get the Sultan in 1866 to change the Egyptian succession to his own oldest son, and Egypt's annual tribute to the Ottoman empire was nearly doubled the next year when the Sultan proclaimed him khedive. Contributions also allowed Egypt to acquire the Red Sea ports of Suakin and Mitsiwa in 1865. The Turkish captain Selim had led an Egyptian expedition as far south as Gondokoro in 1841, and others used Khartoum as a base for raiding in the Sudan. In 1869 the khedive sent British explorer Samuel Baker to the lake country of western Uganda. By 1875 Isma'il had extended his authority to Harar in eastern Abyssinia.
The Egyptian government still allowed slave trafficking from the Sudan down the Nile, and Khartoum became the entrepot for this lucrative trade. Shaykh Rifa'a al-Tahtawi (1801-73) had published his thoughts on the French Revolution and urged a secular constitution for Egypt to protect civil liberties in 1834; but these ideas did not take hold for thirty years. He brought a renaissance to literary Arabic by translating European works, though wali 'Abbas closed down the translation bureau and sent Tahtawi to Sudan. His 1869 book The Paths of Egyptian Hearts to the Joys of the Modern Way of Life started a national movement toward socialism. Al-Tahtawi advocated sharing work among all for the public interest. Foreign minister Nubar Pasha proposed an international tribunal to replace the consular courts, and in 1875 fourteen European nations agreed to independent tribunals mixed with European and Egyptian judges using the Napoleonic Code. Nubar had to go into exile, because Isma'il was upset that he was now subject to this jurisdiction.
Isma'il greatly increased Egypt's debt; but about twice as much as was spent on the Suez Canal went into 910 miles of new railways and nearly that much also paid for maintaining 8400 miles of Nile canals. They also built 64 sugar mills and extended telegraph lines 5200 miles. In 1864 Viceroy Isma'il and the Ottoman sultan agreed to let France's Napoleon III arbitrate the Suez Canal project, and he withdrew the company's right to use free Egyptian labor and returned the land to Egypt for 84 million francs. The work resumed in 1866, and Napoleon III's wife Eugénie witnessed the opening of the historic canal on November 17, 1869. The English avoided using the Suez Canal at first, but by 1874 it was making a profit. The next year Isma'il Pasha had so much debt that he sold all Egypt's shares to British prime minister Benjamin Disraeli for four million pounds. The Suez Canal had cost the Egyptian government more than 13 million pounds, and all it got for this was the Sweet Water Canal and the land it irrigated.
Shoa chief Asfa Wossen (r. 1775-1808) expanded his territory by taking Oromo land; he became independent of Ethiopia and reformed taxes. His son Wossen Seged (r. 1808-13) took the title of ras and fought with Tigray's Ras Wolde Selassie against Wallo and Yejju. Wossen Seged's son Sahle Selassie (r. 1813-47) was a powerful ruler of Shoa and called himself negus (king), extending his authority over 'Yefat, the Oromo people, and Gurage. He kept the peace; but after his death, his son Haile Malekot (r. 1847-55) had to face an Oromo uprising.
Bofu ruled the Oromo in Enarya and was succeeded by his son Abba Bagibo (r. 1825-61), who enriched the kingdom by trading slaves, gold, ivory, and civets. To the south Abba Magal founded the kingdom of Jimma-Kakka and was succeeded by his son Abba Jifar Sana (r. 1830-55); but Abba Reba (r. 1855-59) provoked war with his Oromo neighbors and was killed in battle. His brother Abba Boko (r. 1859-62) promoted Islam by having mosques built, and his son Abba Gommol (r. 1862-78) expanded the kingdom.
In Ethiopia after the death of Wolde Selassie (r. 1795-1816), a succession struggle resulted in Sebagadis Woldu (r. 1822-31) taking the throne. He fought the Yejju dynasty but was eventually captured and executed. Ras Wube gained control of Tigray and fought Yejju ruler Ras 'Ali with rifles the French gave him; but he was captured while celebrating and was released on ransom to Tigray. Amhara ruler Ali Gwangul was succeeded by his nephew Gugsa Mersu (r. 1803-25), who nationalized the land as Islam spread. Gugsa's son Ras Yeman (r. 1825-28) favored Muslims over Christians, but his nephew Ras 'Ali Alula (r. 1831-53) shared power with his mother Menen, who converted to Christianity.
Kassa Hailu was the son of a Qwara chief and a poor widow; he became a soldier and took the title Dejazmach. He took over Gondar by force in 1847, capturing Yejju empress Menen, whose granddaughter he had married. The next year he attacked Egyptians but could not take Sennar because of their firearms. Kassa revolted against Menen's son Ras 'Ali in 1852 and defeated Gojjam. Tigray's Wube joined with 'Ali; but Kassa defeated them too, burning Ali's capital Dabra Tabor in 1853. The next year he captured 7,000 firearms from Wube at Derasge.
Crowning himself emperor in 1855, Kassa took the name Tewodros II. He invaded Wallo and made the fortress of Magdala his capital. Then he took over Shoa and appointed the deceased king's brother Haile Mikael his governor there, while taking the latter's son Menelik as his hostage. Tewodros tried to break tribal ties and discipline his army by paying them himself. He imported firearms and especially wanted artillery. He issued strict laws and executed bandits who refused to farm. He got his men to build roads by working along with them. Tewodros believed he had a religious mission and ordered Muslims to become Christian within a year, and he expelled Roman Catholics. He caused resentment when he imprisoned church leader Abuna Selama, tried to reduce the number of priests, limited ecclesiastical land, and made clergy dependent on state salaries.
After his wife Tewbech died in 1858, he took several concubines and let slave-trading resume. He allowed missionaries to hold religious services but expected them to repair muskets and produce weapons and ammunition. In 1863 he began imprisoning missionaries. Suspicious that the British were allied with Egypt, Tewodros had consul Cameron and his staff arrested in 1864. Two years later he released them but kept other European prisoners. In 1867 Lt. General Robert Napier invaded from India with a British force of 12,000 men. Tewodros burned Debre Tabor and retreated to Magdala. A negotiation nearly was achieved; but Napier rejected Tewodros' peace offering of 1,000 cows and 500 sheep as too large. When the British stormed his fortress with their superior breech-loading Snider rifles, Tewodros shot himself with the pistol Queen Victoria had given him.
Wagshum Gobeze was crowned Emperor Tekla Giyorgis in 1868, and three years later he tried to capture Adwa, the capital of Tigray. Kassa of Tigray defeated him and became Emperor Yohannes IV in January 1872 at Axum. He built many churches and gave extensive lands to the Church. He converted the Muslim Halima before marrying her, and he prohibited witchcraft and the use of tobacco. Yohannes sent an appeal to England for help against Egyptian encroachment. In 1874 the Egyptians occupied Zeila and Harar. Yohannes raised an army of 70,000 to stop the Muslim invasion, and on November 15, 1875 at Gundet the Ethiopians destroyed the invading army, capturing 2500 Remington rifles and 20,000 Maria Theresa dollars.
Yusuf Qaramanli (r. 1795-1832) managed to consolidate his political authority and revive the economy, making Tripoli a maritime power with help from the Ottomans. After his corsairs captured two American ships in 1796, Yusuf released the one which was carrying money to the Dey of Algiers but made the other a warship. In a treaty the Americans promised to pay Tripoli $52,000 and give them naval materials; but when these did not arrive, Yusuf declared war in 1801. The Americans blockaded Tripoli, but in 1803 corsairs captured the Philadelphia and its crew of 307 men. For two years the Americans tried to help Ahmad overthrow his brother Yusuf until they made a treaty with Yusuf, paying $60,000 as prisoners on both sides were released. Like the Husainids of Tunisia, Yusuf made produce and livestock state monopolies. He gained duty from slaves sold at Tripoli and tribute from Fazzan's trans-Saharan trade.
After 1810 the British persuaded Tripoli to end its monopoly on livestock trade, and in 1816 the powerful British fleet forced Algiers, Tunis, and Tripoli to prohibit piracy and release Christian captives. Two years later the French fleet added their influence on the Maghrib to end piracy. In 1830 Admiral de Rosamel's French squadron made the pasha sign a treaty not to interfere in Algeria nor engage in piracy, and to limit its navy. Yusuf had so much trouble with his finances that he debased the currency seven times between 1829 and 1832. 'Abdul-Jalil began a tribal rebellion in 1831 and asked for British protection. When the British insisted the pasha pay his foreign debts, his special levy stimulated more rebellion. In 1832 Yusuf abdicated to his son 'Ali. British consul Warrington ignored his instructions to be neutral and helped the rebels get weapons from Malta. The British government declined Warrington's request for military intervention, because they were negotiating with the French, who supported the Tripoli government. Eventually in 1835 the Ottomans sent a fleet commanded by Tahir Pasha and arrested 'Ali Qaramanli, replacing him with Nashib Pasha, whom the rebels of Manshiya accepted. The previous rebel choice, Muhammad Qaramanli, fled and committed suicide.
After studying various Sufi orders, in 1837 Sidi Muhammad ibn 'Ali al-Sanusi (1787-1859) founded the Sanusiya tariqa in Mecca. Four years later he settled in Banghazi, and in Cyrenaica the Sanusis resisted foreign influences. Cyrenaica was separated administratively from Tripolitania, and the Sanusis helped Turkish officials collect taxes and enforce laws. Probably to avoid Turkish authorities, Sanusi moved the seat of his order to Jaghbub in 1856. Like many Sufis, Sanusi wrote a book describing the phases a soul passes through to be purified and united with God; but the Sanusiya Order also became a political movement, and by the time of his death he had founded 21 lodges in Cyrenaica. He was succeeded by his son, and the movement spread to Tunisia, Egypt, the Hijaz, and central Africa.
The Tripolitanian governor defeated the rebel leaders of Tarhuna, Fazzan, and Sirta in 1841, and the next year Gharyan submitted. Inland rebels continued to fight the Turks, and the most famous Ghuma al-Mahmudi was not killed until 1858. After Tunisia abolished slavery in 1846 and Algeria in 1848, Tripoli increased its slave trade, sending 2,733 to the Levant in 1850, nearly twice the previous year. A decree abolished slavery in Tripolitania in 1857, though slaves still passed through Tripoli to the Ottoman empire even after slavery was abolished by Turkey in 1889.
modernized Islamic courts, and in 1851 a mixed court was established
to help foreigners. In 1853 modern secondary schools began teaching
history, science, and European languages as well as Arabic and
Turkish. In 1865 governor Mahmud Nedim Pasha reformed the Tripolitanian
administration and established new criminal, civil, and commercial
courts. Governor 'Ali Rashid Rida (r. 1867-70) used French technical
help and allowed them to settle in Tubruq until British resentment
caused his recall. Food distribution centers were established
in 1870 to relieve a famine.
Tunisia's 'Ali Bey II had promised Algerians favors with olive oil and cattle; but Hamuda Bey defied Algerian rulers in 1806, and Tunisia fought back three Algerian invasions in the next seven years. When the Janissaries revolted in 1811, Hamuda gained popularity by dissolving them. Hamuda's brother 'Uthman demoted vizier Yusuf to treasurer; but after ruling less than a year, 'Uthman was assassinated by his cousin Mahmud. His feared vizier Muhammad Zarruq had Yusuf assassinated in 1815 and was killed himself in 1822. Mahmud (r. 1814-24) fell back into raising taxes and monopolizing produce; farmers and merchants especially resented the tax and monopoly over olive oil. Under pressure by a naval squadron from France and Britain, Mahmud freed Christian captives and abolished slavery in 1816; but the Tunisians engaged in privateering during the Greek War. In 1817 a major plague ravaged Tunisia.
After a crisis in 1829, Husain Bey (r. 1824-35) signed a treaty with the French in 1830 that abolished the monopoly on produce, prohibited acts of piracy, confirmed previous trade treaties, made France most favored, and allowed European consuls to try all cases involving Europeans. Three days later Tripoli signed a similar treaty. Husain refused to allow the Ottoman official Tahir Pasha to land in Tunis to challenge the French blockade of Algeria, and he helped the French by allowing the sale of cattle for their army. However, Husain's brother Mustafa Bey (r. 1835-37) sent Tunisian troops to help Tahir Pasha's Ottoman fleet subdue a rebellion at Tripoli in 1836.
Ahmad Bey (r. 1837-55) resisted pressure to accept Ottoman sovereignty, and in 1836 the French warned the Sultan in Istanbul not to use force against Tunisia. The next year an Ottoman envoy asked for annual tribute to confirm their religious connection. In 1838 Ahmad sent the renowned scholar Ibrahim al-Riyahi to Istanbul with rich gifts to plead Tunisia's poverty. Ahmad founded a military school in 1840 and hired Europeans to train his officers. Tunisia banned the sale of slaves in 1841, and the next year children of slaves were pronounced free. In 1846 a manumission decree made owning slaves illegal. That year Ahmad was the first non-European ruler to visit Paris and was honored as an independent sovereign. He reduced privileges of Turks to give Tunisians equal rights. Tunisia did send 4,000 troops to help the Turks in the Crimean War of 1854. Some of Ahmad Bey's reforms wasted money, such as the large frigate built at La Goulette that could not make it through the channel to the sea. Despite his financial difficulties, the army was expanded to 26,000 men, and Ahmad had three palaces constructed. New taxes were put on olives and palm trees, and excises were imposed on all agricultural produce and livestock. The state monopolized the sale of tobacco, salt, and leather. These taxes and the corruption hurt agriculture. When the tithe on cereals was no longer enough for the army and the poor, grain was imported from Egypt.
Muhammad Bey (r. 1855-59) tried to defy the European consuls without relying on the local chiefs. He administered justice himself, and in 1857 he executed the Jew Samuel Sfez for having cursed a Muslim and the Islamic faith. However, the same year Muhammad issued the Pledge of Security that protected persons and property with equality for Muslims and non-Muslims; this law also allowed foreigners to own property in Tunisia. He rescinded oppressive taxes to stimulate agriculture. This reduced revenues; but the economy did not improve, because Ahmad Bey's extravagance had enriched the European merchants, who removed the gold and silver coins. When the foreign merchants refused to accept copper coins, Muhammad Bey borrowed from the Tunisians by issuing weaker currency in 1858.
Khayr al-Din and other leaders with pressure from the consuls insisted that the Bey keep the Pledge and reform corrupt government. So Muhammad appointed a constitutional commission in 1861 with Khayr al-Din as its president. However, he soon resigned in opposition to loans from Europe. While he was away for seven years, Khayr al-Din wrote The Surest Path to Know the Conditions of the State in which he compared 21 European states so that they could learn how to be prosperous. He suggested that Muslims learn from others, because the whole world is becoming like one united country with nations that need each other. Islamic law should protect the rights of all, not just Muslims, and Muslims have a right to borrow any methods that will help them prosper. Europeans have made much progress in science, industry, and agriculture by allowing personal liberty while maintaining justice under the rule of law. Rulers should be restrained by Islamic law and policies based on reason.
Muhammad al-Sadiq Bey (r. 1859-82) revived the commission, and the new constitution was promulgated in 1860, making the Bey a constitutional and hereditary monarch. Ministers were responsible to a council of sixty appointed by the Bey. The corrupt vizier Mustafa Khaznadar had been in office for a quarter century, and the 'ulama (religious scholars) did not want to give up their influence either. Provincial governors made fortunes collecting taxes. Thus the constitution failed and was suspended after four years. Yet between 1863 and 1871 the British, Austrians, Italians, and French accepted the jurisdiction of the Tunisian courts.
In 1862 Khaznadar began borrowing money for Tunisia in fraudulent transactions. After the poll tax was doubled, 'Ali ben Guedahem and the Tijaniya brotherhood led the tribal rebellion that erupted in March 1864. A month later Oudi Sidi Shaykh and the Dergawa brotherhood revolted; but most resistance was crushed by April 1865. Britain, France, and Italy sent squadrons to protect their interests. Financial ruin was compounded by drought, famine, a cholera epidemic in 1865, and a typhus epidemic in 1868. Smuggling food to Algeria in 1867 made these worse. Khaznadar continued to borrow from abroad. After long negotiations an International Financial Commission was composed equally of English, French, and Italians in 1869. The Tunisian debt was reduced from 275 million francs to 125 million, and treasury bills were sold with five percent interest. The Tunisian army was reduced to 8,000 men, and the military academy was closed. Khaznadar then profited by issuing debased coins in 1871. That year Italy used force to gain concessions. Finally Khayr al-Din went to Istanbul for the third time, and the Ottoman sultan confirmed al-Sadiq as his vizier in November 1871.
Richard Wood gained concessions for England, and the London
Bank of Tunis opened in 1873. That year Villet proved that Khaznadar
owned one-fifth of the treasury bills, 24 million francs. Khaznadar
was dismissed and replaced by Khayr al-Din. He reduced taxes and
required tax-collectors to submit annual accounts. Good harvests
enabled him to redeem treasury bills. He founded the Sadiqiya
College with a modern curriculum in 1875. English enterprises
set up with the help of the previous prime minister failed, and
Khayr al-Din refused to allow the French to build a rail line
that would help them invade Algeria.
In 1802 Algerian Ra'is Hamidu was acclaimed for capturing a Portuguese brig with 282 men and 44 cannons. The Jewish ship-owner Nephtali Bushnaq, who transported wheat and influenced the government, was killed by a Turkish soldier in 1805. Religious scholars thanked the assassin, and rioting Algerians killed about 200 Jews and looted their property. Troops also killed Mustafa Dey (r. 1798-1805) and the next six deys over eleven years. Algerian privateers had a very big year in 1812 when they took in 2,136,675 gold francs. The United States declared war on Algeria in 1815 because of the privateering, and Commodore Stephen Decatur defeated and killed Ra'is Hamidu. In 1816 British admiral Exmouth went to Algiers and forced the Dey to free slaves from the Ionian islands, Sardinia, and Naples. After doing the same to Tunis, he returned and demanded that slavery and privateering be abolished. When the Dey refused, he bombarded Algiers with 34,000 shells on August 27, 1816. A devastating plague hit Algeria the next year. In 1827 Muhammad al-Kabir led a tribal rebellion that attacked al-Mu'askar, but he was captured and executed. Followers of Ahmed al-Tijani (d. 1815) resented the Turks so much that they considered the French conquest of Algeria in 1830 an answer to their prayers.
In the late 18th century the Jewish merchant families, Bakri and Bushnaq, sold Algerian wheat to the French army. The French owed them millions of francs, and they owed the Algerian government. Husain Dey came to power in 1818 and tried to get French consul Pierre Deval to pay this debt; but his nephew Alexandre Deval fortified the French factories with cannons. When Pierre Deval refused to reply to letters about the debts in 1827, Husain Dey slapped him with a fly swatter. Husain refused to make reparations or amends for the insult, and so the French government blockaded Algerian ports. In October 1827 a united squadron of British, French, and Russian warships destroyed the remaining Tunisian and Algerian fleets with their Turkish and Egyptian vessels in the battle of Navarino. In March 1830 Charles X opened the Chamber of Deputies session by announcing the invasion of Algeria led by Bourmont. In July Husain Dey signed a capitulation to France and left for Naples. About a hundred million francs were taken from the Bey and private sources and sent to France, though only half of it went into the treasury to pay for the expedition; the rest was looted by those invading. French elections and demonstrations forced Charles X to abdicate in August, and Bourmont withdrew the troops and took refuge in Spain.
The Polignac government of France retained Algiers and let military commander Clauzel begin colonization. In 1831 Clauzel tried to put Tunisian princes over Oran and Constantine under French sovereignty. Berthezene and Pichon, who wanted to restrain speculation and settlers, were recalled, and in 1832 Rovigo used force to convert a mosque into a cathedral and destroyed two Muslim cemeteries to build a road. Colonization of Algeria was debated in France, and the policy was called limited occupation (occupation restreinte). Resistance led by Emir 'Abdul-Qadir and Moroccan encroachment stimulated the French to take control of Oran and Constantine in 1831, and the next year Morocco ruler 'Abdul-Rahman agreed to withdraw his troops from Algeria. 'Annaba and Bijaya, which Bourmont had evacuated, were reoccupied. As French colonists settled in the al-Mitija plain, 6,000 troops were stationed at the Blida military base.
In February 1834 French general Desmichels in Oran made an agreement with 'Abdul-Qadir recognizing his authority in the region around the towns of Oran, Arzu, and Mustaghanim, which the French controlled; but the first French governor-general Marshal Clauzel, appointed as military commander and civil administrator, marched on al-Mu'askar in December 1835. 'Abdul-Qadir abandoned his capital, and Clauzel set it on fire. The next month Clauzel occupied and garrisoned Tlemcen, extorting the costs of his expedition from the kulughlis. Ahmad Bey governed Constantine since 1826 and after 1830 wanted to be an independent regency under the Ottomans. In November 1836 Clauzel tried to storm the city with 8,700 men but failed and lost a thousand men. General Bugeaud, who had defeated 'Abdul-Qadir at Sikkak, signed the Treaty of Tafna with him, redefining their boundaries in May 1837. In July, Ahmad Bey declined to sign a treaty when he learned an Ottoman fleet was approaching; but a French naval squadron kept them away. In October 1837 French forces captured Constantine as Ahmad Bey fled into the desert. Damremont was killed assaulting Constantine, and Valée became governor-general.
Emir 'Abdul-Qadir won over tribes in eastern Algeria and renewed his holy war when Valée defied the agreement in 1839. 'Abdul-Qadir's warriors invaded al-Mitija plain and killed more than a hundred European settlers. Valée was replaced by General Bugeaud (1841-47), who implemented the policy of total occupation. The French used the tribal method of razzia even more efficiently as they destroyed villages, stole cattle, burned crops, and chopped down trees. French troops led by Col. Pélissier caused hundreds of Muslims in caves to suffocate from smoke. The French army forced 'Abdul-Qadir to flee to Morocco in 1843. The next year the French defeated the Moroccan army at Isly, and the French navy bombarded Tangier and Mogador. The Moroccan government signed the Treaty of Tangier, promising to treat the Emir as an outlaw. In the Dahra young chief Bu Ma'za claimed to be the mahdi, allowing 'Abdul-Qadir to invade the Tafna valley in 1846; but the next year Bu Ma'za surrendered, and the Emir took refuge in Morocco. Bugeaud disobeyed orders when he made a destructive expedition into the Banu 'Abbas mountains; criticized for this, he resigned. Trapped between Moroccan and French forces, 'Abdul-Qadir surrendered in December 1847.
By 1847 there were 109,380 Europeans in Algeria, but only about a seventh lived outside of large towns. Tribal lands were sold to settlers, because grazing lands were defined as vacant. Many Europeans had their lands cultivated by Muslim farmers. The Second Republic of 1848 brought reforms to French Algeria, letting them elect representatives; the military only governed the Muslims. In 1848 religious leader Bu Zayyan led a revolt because of an arbitrary tax on palms, and the next year French troops exterminated his Za'atsha oasis. The Grand Kabyla rebellion led by Bu Baghla in 1851 lasted until he was killed in 1854. That year the Algerian judicial system that had been used by 'Abdul-Qadir was modernized as Franco-Muslim courts were established.
Napoleon III visited Algeria in 1863 and said Muslim society should be preserved. He ordered a survey of tribal lands and their division so that administrators could deal with tribal chiefs. The Awlad Sidi al-Shaykh tribe accepted French rule, but in 1864 chief Sulayman ibn Hamza led a rebellion against arbitrary taxes after his assistant was beaten in public. Emperor Napoleon tried to institute reform by giving Algerians French citizenship; but because they had to renounce their religious laws, only 194 Muslims and 398 Jews had done so by 1870. Lavigerie became archbishop of Algiers in 1867; but he offended Muslims when he put 1,753 Muslim orphans in charitable institutions so that he could convert them, ignoring their relatives' demands.
Muhammad al-Muqrani's father worked for the French until he
died in 1853; but the son was given a lesser title and incurred
huge debts for his people during the famine of 1868. Faced with
financial ruin, al-Muqrani led a rebellion in 1871 that was supported
by the Rahmaniya tariqa. When about a third of Algerian
Muslims rose up and destroyed farms and plundered villages, al-Muqrani
offered to surrender; but the settlers demanded he be treated
as a criminal. After al-Muqrani was killed fighting, Rahmaniya
chief Shaykh Haddad and his son 'Aziz surrendered, resulting in
the subjugation of Kabyla. In the south rebel Bu Mazraq was captured
in 1872. The French had lost 2,686 men; but the Muslim losses
were much greater, and the economy was ruined. Kabyla was expected
to pay a war indemnity of 36.5 million francs, ten times their
annual tribute. Only a third of the money paid by the Muslims
to repurchase their lands went to the French victims; the remainder
was used for expanding colonization. The French rural population
went from 119,000 in 1871 to 200,000 in 1898. French government
imposed their colonial regime with the 1874 "native code"
that subjected the indigenous population to restrictive rules
that deprived them of rights.
Morocco developed commercially under Sultan Mawlay Sulayman (r. 1792-1822), who promoted trade and sold monopolies to Jewish merchants. He abolished the gate tolls and market taxes, winning urban support; but he increased taxes on agriculture and livestock. Sulayman led a campaign against Ait Umalu Berbers in 1811 and was defeated at Azru. He was rescued by the Ait Idrasin. Three years later the Ait Umalu defeated the Ait Idrasin, and Ait Zammur chief Muhammad ibn al-Ghazi became the leader of the lowland Berbers, allied with the Darqawiya Tariqa in opposition to the Sultan. Al-'Arabi al-Darqawi (d. 1823) founded this brotherhood, emphasizing asceticism, mystical union with God, and poverty. They used music and singing in their ecstatic experiences and thus were opposed by 'ulama (clerics). Sulayman had welcomed Sufi teacher Ahmad al-Tijani in Fez, but the Sultan denounced some of their practices and had closed a zawiya and imprisoned a leader in 1795. When tribes influenced by the Darqawiya brotherhood in western Algeria rose up against the Turks at Oran in 1805, Sulayman refused to aid them. After Tayibiya leader Sidi 'Ali ibn Ahmad died in 1811, Sulayman tried but failed to influence the selection of his successor. Sulayman was also criticized for adopting Wahhabi doctrines.
In 1816 Sulayman freed the Christians in Morocco captured by pirates, and the next year he prohibited piracy. He banned most exports and collected fifty percent duty on imports. Thus trade with foreigners was minimal, and only a few Europeans lived in Morocco. In 1819 Ait Zammur chief al-Ghazi deserted Sulayman's 'Abid and Wadaya army, helping the Ait Umalu to win. The Sultan was captured, and his son Ibrahim was killed. Sulayman was soon taken back to Miknasa, but he had lost his authority. When the Ait Umalu attacked Miknasa, the 'Abid killed their commander, the Sultan's chief minister. Sulayman fled to Fez and Marrakesh. The 'ulama of Fez declared him incompetent and proclaimed his nephew Ibrahim sultan; but the 'Abid and Wadaya refused to support Ibrahim and helped Sulayman regain northern Morocco. Europeans sent money and materials, and Fez submitted to Sulayman in 1822. Before he died in November, Sulayman chose his nephew 'Abdul-Rahman as his successor.
Mawlay 'Abdul-Rahman (r. 1822-59) revived piracy in 1825 until Austrians destroyed his ships at Larache in 1829. When the French invaded Algeria in 1830, popular pressure compelled him to send Moroccan troops against the French; but they were withdrawn from Tlemcen and Oran two years later, using the excuse that the Wadaya had looted Tlemcen. The British made the French promise not to invade Moroccan territory and urged the Moroccans to avoid the Algerian conflict. Three-quarters of Morocco's foreign trade was through the British at Gibraltar. After Emir 'Abdul-Qadir took refuge in Morocco, the Moroccan army went to Wujda in 1844 but was defeated by the French at Isly. The French navy commanded by Prince de Joinville also bombarded Tangier and Mogador. Dukkala tribes massacred officials and looted al-Jadida, and rebels threatened Marrakesh. French diplomat Léon Roches went to Tangier, and in 1846 French ships connected that port with Oran. The Sultan established monopolies, and Moroccans blamed their 1847 famine on European trade. In 1850 he revived taxes on leather and cattle. British consul John D. Hay persuaded Morocco to make a treaty in 1856 banning all monopolies except on arms, ammunition, and tobacco. Import duties were set at ten percent, and foreign merchants were exempt from regular taxes unrelated to trade.
'Abdul-Rahman was succeeded by his son Muhammad IV (r. 1859-73). Spain envied the British success and fortified Sabta, which was attacked by Anjara tribes in 1859. The next year Spanish forces defeated the Anjara warriors and occupied Tatuan. In the peace treaty Morocco agreed to pay a war indemnity of twenty million duoros, and the next year a commercial treaty was signed. This Moroccan defeat provoked rebellions in Marrakesh and the north which lasted until 1862 when the northern leader al-Jilani was killed. Spaniards evacuated Tatuan after Morocco borrowed money from London to pay them three million duoros. A consular sanitary council had been established at Tangier in 1846 to supervise health conditions in Moroccan ports, and the British, French, and Spanish established their own post offices in 1857, 1860, and 1861 respectively. The French persuaded Sultan Muhammad to grant judiciary privileges to merchants in 1863, and the next year he ordered Moroccan officials to handle the affairs of Jews quickly and justly. European commerce increased, and 1,500 Europeans lived in Morocco by 1867.
When Mawlay Hasan (r. 1873-94) became sultan, craftsmen demanded that commerce taxes be abolished before they would pledge their allegiance. Hasan used force to make them submit and later added special taxes on land. He modernized his army and set recruiting quotas by region to increase it to 25,000 soldiers. He reformed Moroccan government by making taxes more uniform so that Europeans and Muslim leaders had to pay their fair share. Hasan campaigned against the rebellious Rahamna in the south in 1875.
Usman dan Fodio (ibn Fudi) was born in 1754 and studied for a year with the radical Jibril ibn 'Umar of Agades, who had to flee from persecution by Tuareg aristocrats because of his subversive preaching. As a Fulani scholar and Qadiriya Sufi, Usman wrote books to explain Islam to Fulani pastoralists, composed poems in Fulfulde, and preached to Hausa peasants. He challenged the moral positions of Gobir king Bawa and struggled for freedom of religion. Shaykh Usman called for reforms, and his Fulani community became an alternative to oppressive Gobir rule. He did not claim to be the coming Mahdi but his forerunner. Usman met with Bawa at age thirty and then moved from the Zamfara region to Degel in western Gobir, where his growing community became independent of the Alkalawa government. Gobir king Nafata rescinded the rights they had won and banned the Fulani turbans and veils about 1796. After raids captured Fulanis as slaves, Usman approved carrying arms for defense.
Usman helped Nafata's son Yunfa become the next Gobir king in 1801, but Yunfa's resistance to Usman's reforms led to conflict. Yunfa summoned Usman dan Fodio and tried to shoot him with a pistol; but it backfired and wounded his own hand. After proscribed Muslims used force to liberate some captives, Yunfa expelled Usman and his community from Degel. Like the prophet Muhammad, they emigrated and began a jihad in 1804. In his book Bayan Wujub al-hijra Usman wrote,
Seeing to the welfare of subjects
is more effective than a large number of soldiers.
It has been said that the crown of a king is his integrity,
his stronghold is his impartiality and his capital is his subjects.
There can be no triumph with transgression,
no rule without learning (fiqh) of the law
and no chieftaincy with vengeance.1
Shaykh Usman sent letters to Hausa rulers in 1804, asking them to reform; now he tried to negotiate, but Hausa leaders rejected his offer. Those supporting Shaykh Usman were driven out of Alkalawa and villages. During a famine the Muslims gained the support of pastoralist Fulanis against Tuareg raiders. Because they did not have fire-arms, the Muslims used poisoned arrows despite Islamic law. Usman's brother 'Abdullah criticized vainglorious worldliness and other departures from Islamic law. Fulani Muslims combined with those from Zumfara and Katsina, and on their fourth attempt they captured Alkalawa and killed Yunfa in 1808. Muslims already controlled Katsina and Kano.
Umar ibn Abdur sent his brother Sambo from Bornu to Gobir for a jihad flag as allies of Shaykh Usman, and they took over Hadejia and attacked Auyo. When Galadima Dunama tried to stop this, Ardo Lerlima revolted and joined his cousin Abdur to drive Dunama from his capital at Nguru. In Deya of Bornu scholars al-Bukhari and Goni Mukhtar led Fulani discontent and ravaged the region. Bornu mai Ahmad wrote to the jihad leaders that he was a Muslim leader, and Usman's son Muhammad Bello answered the letter by asking the Mai to join the jihad. However, Ahmad was already fighting with his son Dunama against Lerlima, who was killed. Ibrahim Zaki marched on the Bornu capital at Birni Gazargamu, and the forces of Goni Mukhtar forced Mai Ahmad to flee eastward, where the aged ruler abdicated to his son Dunama.
Muhammad al-Amin ibn Muhammad al-Kanemi was born in the Fezzan to an Arab mother and a Kanembu father. He studied Islam in Murzuk and Tripoli and went on a pilgrimage with his father, who died in 1790. Al-Kanemi settled in Ngala to teach, but he was also a military leader and was called to support Mai Dunama. He had written to al-Bukhari and Goni Mukhtar, questioning the wisdom of their aggression. He argued that people should be taught Islam not by war and that to kill Muslims in a jihad is worse than to tolerate the practices of unbelievers. Justifying his action as defending legitimate authority, his Bornu army defeated and killed Goni Mukhtar, enabling Dunama to return to his palace two months after his father left. Al-Kanemi returned to Ngala, and Dunama rewarded him with slaves. Ibrahim Zaki captured the capital again the next year but soon had to retreat. The nobles lost their faith in Dunama and forced him to abdicate to his uncle, Muhammad Ngileruma, and a new Bornu capital was built at Birni Kafela. Al-Kanemi gained the fief of Ngurno before he agreed to attack Zaki.
By the end of 1808 the Muslims captured Zaria. The Bornu mai complained that the Fulani were emigrating from his territory. Most peasants remained neutral, as the Muslim reformers fought a revolution to replace Hausa aristocrats. Shaykh Usman established a caliphate at Sokoto and sent governors and judges to implement Islamic law (shari'a) in the provinces. In 1812 he divided the caliphate into east and west, and after his death five years later the Gwandu emir controlled the western region.
Bornu's Ngileruma was disliked for his strict laws, and al-Kanemi was offered even more land to support the return of Dunama. Al-Kanemi then had a new town built at Kukawa. He campaigned against rebellious Fulani and used Fezzani troops. Dunama formed an alliance with the Baghirmi sultan east of Lake Chad against al-Kanemi, who intercepted his letter and killed Dunama. After 1819 al-Kanemi ruled Bornu as Dunama's young brother Ibrahim was under his influence. Baghirmi was defeated in 1824 after ten years of fighting. In 1826 al-Kanemi drove the Fulani leader Muhammad Manga to Kano, invading the Sokoto caliphate until he was defeated by Yaqub of Bauchi.
Usman dan Fodio's son Muhammad Bello became Sokoto caliph in 1817. 'Abd al-Salim led the Arewa tribe in revolt against him, but he was defeated in January 1818 and died of his wounds. Maradi sarki Dan Kassawa (r. 1819-31) often attacked Katsina. The jihad overcame Zamfara by 1821, and in 1826 Bello attacked Konya and Magariya in Gobir. The Muslims defeated the Kebbi about 1831 when their sarkin Karari was killed; his son Ya'qub Nabame was kept as a hostage at Sokoto. The Muslims defeated the Gobirawa and their Tuareg allies at the battle of Gawakuke in 1836. Bello fought 47 campaigns in the twenty years before he died in 1837. His successor Abubakar Atiku campaigned against Gobir every year until he died in 1842. That year Gobir sarkin Mayaki founded a new capital at Tsibiri. Sokoto and Kano forces under 'Ali ibn Bello (r. 1842-59) struggled for years against Maradawa raids. The caliphate suffered a defeat in 1849 after Ya'qub Nabame was released and led a Kebbi revolt. In 1848 Bukhari in Hadejia refused to obey a summons to Sokoto and fought a war against the caliphate for about fifteen years until his death, causing devastation, famine, and much slavery. Caliph 'Ali increased taxes in Zaria, and in 1855 he deposed Sidi Abdulkadir of Zaria for insubordination. Damagaram under Tenimu ibn Sulayman (c. 1851-84) became a threat to the caliphate, because he had 6,000 guns and forty cannons. Caliph Ahmad al-Rifa'l (r. 1867-73) deposed Zaria emir 'Abdullah for disobedience in 1870. Ahmad made a truce with Sarkin Kebbi 'Abdullah (r. 1863-80), though it was broken in 1875.
The new Muslims tended to restrict the roles of women to the household, and having up to four wives plus concubines, they produced more children. Usman dan Fodio had 37 children, and his son Bello had 73. The women were well educated, and Usman's daughter Nana Asma'u (1793-1864) became a renowned poet, scholar, and teacher, writing in Arabic, Hausa, and Fulfulde. Many of the pagan captives enslaved were women and girls. They were taught Islam, and emancipating slaves was encouraged. Muslims' beliefs placed more value on generosity than wealth, and inheritances were divided among many relatives. The jihad was fought between the elites over religion and power rather than against peoples, though the peasants were often caught in between. In Masina cattle had to be protected from raids by the Bambara and Tuareg.
Al-Kanemi governed Bornu with six Arab advisors and was succeeded in 1837 by his eldest son Umar. Mai Ibrahim instigated Wadai sultan Muhammad ash-Sharif to invade Bornu, Umar learned of it and had Ibrahim arrested. The Wadai army killed many top Bornu officials, and Umar fled to Kukawa. Sultan Muhammad at Ngurno approved the appointment of Ibrahim's son Ali as mai; but Ali was defeated and killed, and the inhabitants of destroyed Birni Kafela fled. Thus in 1846 the Kanem dynasty in Bornu ended after a thousand years. The descendants of al-Kanemi's council of six had fiefs with titles; but their functions became ceremonial. Umar relied on his vizier al-Hajj Bashir. In 1853 Umar's brother Abdurrahman took over the government for a year, killing al-Hajj Bashir but allowing Umar to live in Kukawa. After Umar regained the throne, Abdurrahman revolted again and was put to death. Umar began to rely on Bashir's assistant Laminu Njitiya, who governed until he died in 1871. Slavery flourished in Bornu; by 1870 there were three thousand royal slaves, but some of these held high offices. Some slaves even owned their own slaves, and those called kachella became a standing army in Bornu.
Monzon Diarra (r. 1790-1808) expanded the Segu empire, and
the pressures on the nomadic Fulani (Fulbe) increased under Da
Monzon (r. 1808-27). Ahmadu ibn Hammadi (1775-1844) taught for
twenty years near Jenne before he led a jihad that won
a major victory at Noukoma in 1818. The trouble began when an
Ardo's son was killed for having insulted Ahmadu's students. Bambara
(pagan) rulers tried to suppress the movement; but Ahmadu was
able to organize a massive Fulani army against the Ardo'en and
took over Masina from the Bambara. Ahmadu created an Islamic state
and appointed emirs, who were responsible to a council of forty.
Military service was required of men, although some, such as traders
and smiths, could pay a tax instead. Unlike Usman dan Fodio, Ahmadu
did not abolish the caste system. A new capital was established
at Hamdallahi, and prosecutor Samba Bubakari enforced the laws
strictly. Masina's influence extended to Timbuktu; but after Ahmadu
died in 1844, the Tuareg there asserted their independence. Masina
army commander Balobbo marched to Timbuktu, while Shaykh Sidi
al-Bekkai of the Kunta family negotiated and got the garrison
disbanded, though Masina governor Sansirfi was reinstated. Ahmadu
Seku's reign (1844-1853) was fairly peaceful; but after he died,
Balobbo took control by getting the young Ahmadu mo Ahmadu (r.
In 1799 when Abdulay Bademba was made almami, Futa Jallon began an alternating rule every two years between the families of Alfaya and Soriya. In 1810 the Soriya almami Abdul Gadiri was sent into exile; but four years later he returned and killed Abdulay Bademba and ruled for eight years until his death in 1822. After about five years of civil war, Abdulay's son Bubakar became almami and ruled Timbo for twelve years. Another civil war erupted when Bakari refused to yield after his two years.
The Muslim reformer al-Hajj 'Umar Saidu was born in Futa Toro as an aristocratic Tukulor (torodo), and he was brought up in the Qadiriya brotherhood. After visiting Saint Louis he went on pilgrimage to Mecca in 1825. He joined the Tijaniya Sufi brotherhood, and authorities in Hijaz appointed him Tijani leader for West Africa. On his return he toured Bornu and spent six years in Sokoto, where his daughter Mariam married Muhammad Bello. After Bello died in 1837, he left there, wealthy in slaves and property. 'Umar gained support in Masina but was imprisoned briefly by the ill fama Cefolo in Segu. After returning to Futa Toro, he settled in Futa Jallon near Timbo and taught Tijaniya doctrines. In 1844 'Umar helped resolve the civil war in Futa Jallon by restoring the biennial rule agreement. His disciples traded in guns and gunpowder with the British and French. In Kaarta the Jawara (Diawara), who had been driven out of Nioro, revolted in 1843 against the taxes and oppression by the Massassi, who eventually won the civil war in 1850.
During the Napoleonic wars France had lost control of some settlements to the British, but they had regained them in a treaty signed in 1817. France banned the slave trade the next year, and in 1819 the French made a treaty with Walo to exclude the Moors from the gum trade. In 1830 a Kayor blacksmith named Diile led a revolution for egalitarian Islam that took over the country in a few weeks; but the French governor in Saint Louis sent forces that defeated them and hanged Diile. To stop the Trarza Moors from ravaging their country, Walo made an alliance with the Moors in 1833; but the French got the Moors to renounce it in 1835. The French had established trading posts at Bakel in 1820, at Dagana the next year, and at Merinaghen in 1822; posts were added at Lampbar in 1843 and at Senodebou in 1845. Al-Hajj 'Umar visited Senegambia in 1847 and assured the French that he would prevent wars that harmed commerce. He won people over with Tijani promises of glory, and in 1849 he founded Dinguiraye before destroying the hegemony of Tamba in 1852. The French Second Republic had appointed Protet governor of Senegal in 1850, and he enforced laws to protect the gum trade. In 1854 he sent Louis Faidherbe, who succeeded him that year, to build a post at Podor to wage wars. Similar posts were built at Medine in 1855, at Matam in 1857, at Saldé in 1859, at Aéré and Ndiagne in 1866, and at Klur-Mandoumbe-Khary, Khaoulou, and Talem in 1867.
Al-Hajj 'Umar helped create a new Muslim empire at Tukulor, and he influenced Alfa Mamadu, who led the Joola (Dyula) religious revolution. In Senegambia the Tukulor took over Jallonka, Bambuk, Bondu, and Khasso. By 1854 'Umar was demanding tribute from the French as the price for trade. He wrote a letter to the French governor that year which said,
The whites are only traders:
let them bring merchandise in their ships,
let them pay me a good tribute when I'm master of the Negroes,
and I will live in peace with them.
But I don't wish them to erect permanent establishments
or send warships into the river.2
Local tribes were caught between these two dominating powers. In 1855 'Umar defeated the Massassi and sent a message to Masina; but they chose to fight the Tukulors, and their eight-year war began the next year at Kasakary. In 1855 Governor Faidherbe made a commercial agreement with Khasso king Sambala and his chiefs, promising to defend them from 'Umar's invasion, and the French annexed Walo the next year. The war over Senegambia between the French and Tukulor began when al Hajj 'Umar besieged Medine in 1857. After three months Faidherbe relieved the fort in July, and 'Umar marched on from Bundu and Futa, urging people to migrate with their families and cattle to his Muslim state in the east. He returned to Futa with 40,000 people two years later.
'Umar worked to convert the two remaining pagan kingdoms of the Bambara at Segu and Kaarta. He established his Tijani community on the upper Senegal River between Futa Jallon and Kaarta. His Fulani troops used guns against the Bambara armies. In September 1859 he left Nioro to invade Segu, preaching and using the two cannons they had captured from the French. Although Segu had been fighting off attacks from Masina for years, Segu ruler 'Ali Monzon took refuge in Masina as the Muslim army entered Segu in 1861. The next year 'Umar marched on Masina, and Ahmadu's grandson Ahmadu mo Ahmadu agreed to end pagan practices to become a part of the protectorate. After Kunta chief Sidi Ahmad al-Bekkai at Timbuktu supported the revolt by Balobbo at Hamdallahi, in 1862 'Umar marched on Masina and Hamdallahi and fought Ahmadu mo Ahmadu, who died of his wounds in the battle of Tyayawal. 'Umar's forces even captured Timbuktu. However, the coalition formed by al-Bekkai and Balobbo defeated 'Umar's army in 1863. After eight months of siege, the Tukulor army broke out; 'Umar fled and died in February 1864.
'Umar's eldest son Ahmadu Seku struggled with relatives over the inheritance and made a treaty with French envoy Mage in 1866, though he opposed French posts along the Niger and in his territory. That year the new French governor Pinet-Laprade rejected the treaty. Ahmadu Seku kept the agreement and asked the French for two cannons. The civil strife subsided by 1869 as Ahmadu Seku consolidated his power. That year French governor Valiere was appointed to be more diplomatic and to encourage commerce. Kayor damel Lat-Dior fostered the cultivation of groundnuts and Islam, but in 1871 the French took over Kayor. During the early 1870s Ahmadu Seku proclaimed himself almami and made the Tukulor warriors accept Islam.
In the east Mamadu Dyué led those who rejected Tijani ideas and called themselves hubbu rassul Allah (those who love God). Almami Umaru, who accepted alternating terms, began a war against the Hubbu movement in 1849 that lasted a generation. After many victories, Umaru faced a mutiny in his army about 1865 and went to help the Alfa-Mo-Labé fight the Gabu, whose king he had killed in 1849. Kansala fell, but Umaru died on his way back to Futa Jallon and was succeeded by his brother Ibrahima Sori Dongol Fella (r. 1870-90). Ibrahima Sori Dari tried to take control but was killed fighting the Hubbu at Boketto in 1871. Ibrahima Sori Dongol did not yield power until he was forced to do so in 1875 to the new Alfaya, Amadu Dara, restoring the alternation.
When Osei Bonsu became Asantehene in 1801, the Gofan army conquered Banda and invaded the Asante; but they were defeated by the Asante general Amankwa Tia. This Asantehene continued the reforms of his predecessors by appointing officers based on merit rather than heredity. In 1805 Osei Bonsu tried to mediate a dispute between three Assin chiefs; but when his messengers were executed, he marched against Kwaku Aputae and Kwadwo Otibu of the Assin Atadanso and defeated them. They fled to the Fante, whose council refused to surrender them and killed the Asante messengers. The Asante invaded Fante territory and defeated their army at Abora in May 1806. While the two Assin chiefs escaped and took refuge with the British governor Torrane at Cape Coast, the Asante occupied Kormantine without Dutch resistance. Torrane decided to help the Assins and Fante, either by mediation or force. Fort William commandant White at Anomabu tried to mediate with the Denkyirahene, who commanded the Asante at Kormantine; but he refused. So White had people of Anomabu attack the small Asante post at Egya. In response the Asante army assaulted Anomabu as two thousand people entered the fort. White had only 25 soldiers, but their artillery killed 2,000. Torrane decided to hand over the two Assin chiefs; Kwadwo Otibu was tortured and killed; but Kwaku Aputae escaped. Torrane also gave up half the refugees and allowed Assin people to be enslaved, and he recognized the Asante conquest of Fante territory.
After suffering smallpox and dysentery in 1807, the Asante army went home. In 1809 the Fante army attacked Accra and Elmina but accomplished little, and in 1811 Asantehene Osei Bonsu sent an army to each place to defend them, while treating the Dutch and English as neutrals. However, the Asante ally Atta Wusu Yiakosan and his Akyem Abuakwa joined with the Akwapim and declared war on Asante. This prevented Appia Dankwa and his 4,000 Asante from relieving Accra. This Asante army fought a battle at Apam against the Fante army in which losses on both sides were high. Atta Wusu joined the Akyem with the Fante army; but before he could carry out his plan of attack, he died of smallpox. In 1814 the Asantehene sent his main army, led by Amankwa Abinowa, against the Akyem and Akwapim army, defeating them but not decisively. Asante pillaging alienated their Accra allies. During the chaos of these wars, the British had been trying to abolish the slave trade since 1807, but the English and Americans continued to run slave-ships under the Spanish flag.
In 1816 British governor T. E. Bowditch made a treaty with the Asante recognizing the rents the British paid the Asante for the forts and the British right to protect natives. Osei Bonsu complained to Bowditch that the Fante debased the pure gold the Asante sold them before selling it to the Europeans. In 1818 the Asante went to war with the Gyaman again and killed their chief Adinkera. The British put the Gold Coast settlements under Sierra Leone governor Charles McCarthy, who arrived in 1822. After an Anomabu policeman abused Asantehene Osei Bonsu and was put to death by him, McCarthy persuaded Accra to send their militia and not support Asante with munitions. In 1824 the Asante army surrounded the British and killed 178 of 250 men; McCarthy was wounded and committed suicide. Captain Ricketts agreed to an armistice, which frightened the Fante, Wassaw, and Denkyira allies that they might be surrendered. Asantehene Osei, called Bonsu (Whale) for having conquered to the sea, had died on the same day as Governor McCarthy and was succeeded by his brother Osei Yaw. Between 1823 and 1825 the British sent 1,554 soldiers to West Africa, but more than half of them died.
In 1826 the Asante army invaded Fante, and near Dodowa they faced a slightly larger army of 11,000 allies that included Accra, Ga, Fante, Denkyira, Akyem, Akwamu, and a few British troops. Finally the British use of Congreve rockets caused the Asante army to break and flee. The Asante had seventy commanders killed; hundreds were captured; and the Asantehene was wounded. After this battle of Katamanso the English no longer paid rent to Asante for their forts. During peace negotiations the Asante released their captives; but they complained that their prisoners were still detained at Osu, and they criticized the allies for attacking Elmina. In 1828 the British decided to abandon the Gold Coast but yielded to the merchants' desire to maintain forts at Cape Coast and Accra, for which the government granted 4,000 pounds per year.
In 1831 the new governor George Maclean persuaded the Asante and the allied chiefs to accept a treaty. Asante deposited 600 ounces of gold and two princes as security for six years, and trade (except for slaves) was to be unrestricted. The former subjects of the Asantehene became independent but were forbidden to insult him. Any violations of the treaty were to be judged by the governor of Sierra Leone or Cape Coast, and anyone refusing to accept this would not be protected by the allies. The Juabenhene refused to come to Kumari for a year, and so in 1832 Asantehene Osei Yaw attacked Juaben, forcing them to migrate to Kibi. Methodists arrived in 1833 and evangelized the Fante country. Maclean arbitrated disputes between Wassa and Denkyira in 1833 and between Akuapem and Krobo in 1836 and 1838. In 1834 Denkyira king Kojo Tsibu complained that Maclean fined him 200 pounds for sacrificing humans after his sister's death, and in 1835 Maclean invaded Nzima to stop its king from raiding and slave trading. Maclean and a member of his council watched local trials, criticizing native customs that were inhumane. He helped Asante princes get education and took two of them to England in 1836; at the request of the Asantehene they returned in 1841. Kwaku Dua succeeded Osei Yaw as Asantehene in 1838, and after much fighting he with help from Maclean and the Dutch persuaded the Juaben people to return to Kumasi in 1841. Their queen Ama Sewa rebuilt the town of Juaben and was succeeded by her daughter eight years later.
Under Maclean's wise rule, exports from British forts went from 90,000 pounds in 1830 to 325,508 in 1840, and imports in the same period increased from 131,000 pounds to 422,170. Cowrie shells replaced gold dust as currency, and much palm oil was exported. Maclean married a popular poetess, who wrote as L.E.L.; but her sudden death brought scandal and criticism. In 1843 the British Crown resumed control and sent Commander Hill as governor, though Maclean was appointed Judicial Assessor. Hill made an agreement with Fante and other chiefs called the Bond of 1844, which outlawed human sacrifices and panyarring (selling debtors into slavery) while recommending the principles of British law. Maclean died in 1847, but the Judicial Assessor continued to be assisted by a panel of chiefs who applied native customs.
In 1850 the Gold Coast became a separate government from Sierra Leone, and that year the British bought all the Danish forts for 10,000 pounds. Yet the British and the Dutch were unable to cooperate on customs duties. So in 1852 an assembly of elders and chiefs passed a poll tax of one shilling for every man, woman, and child in the territory south of the Asante. This tax was resented by the people, especially since the British spent most of it to pay their officials' salaries, and only 8% of it went for education and roads. In 1853 they collected 7,500 pounds; but in 1854 and 1857 tax collection provoked rioting. By 1861 they collected only 1,500 pounds, and the tax was eliminated three years later. Cotton growing was tried in 1850; but farmers would not do plantation labor, and the British would not allow them to hire pawns, as being too much like slavery. In 1858 British governor Richard Pine introduced the Municipal Ordinance that allowed towns to elect a council from chiefs and merchants for local government with courts for civil litigation and criminal misdemeanors.
An intrigue between another Assin chief named Kwadwo Otibu and the Asantehene Kwaku Dua that started in 1853 aroused the gathering of an Asante force of 6,000 led by chief Akyeampon. In reaction the Fante arrested four hundred Asante traders, while the British levied the Fante army and sent for reinforcements from Sierra Leone. Orders from Kumasi caused Akyeampon to withdraw across the Pra River, and the allies beheaded Otibu. Kwaku Dua ignored the incident, and peace was kept until 1862 when a slave boy escaped from his Asante master and fled to British governor Pine. An embassy from Kumasi complained, and the Asante began buying munitions from Elmina. The British gathered 400 men and levied 15,000 allies. Major Cochrane shocked the allies by retreating. Unfortunately the British had not maintained an ambassador in Kumasi for negotiation. Pine wanted 2,000 troops to invade Asante territory, but London restrained him. Lt. Col. Conran brought 700 men of the 4th West India Regiment, but they began dying of malaria, yellow fever, and dysentery. Kwaku Dua kept the Asante from invading in 1864 and sent an embassy the next year; but Col. Conran insulted the Asante by announcing they were suing for peace. The Asantehene broke off negotiations and died in 1867. Meanwhile the Anlo army fought the British in 1866.
The British implied that the people on the coast would have to defend themselves. John Aggrey acted as the king of Cape Coast by refusing to surrender prisoners or allow appeals of his judicial sentences to British courts and by inciting a chief to make war. In 1866 Conran deposed Aggrey and banished him to Sierra Leone. Gold Coast chiefs sent protests to Governor Pine that their rights were being violated by civil servants. In 1867 the Dutch and the British made a treaty in which they traded some forts so that they were no longer intermingled. The Denkyira and Wassaw had been allied with the British and mistrusted the neutral Dutch. The Kommenda people rejected the Dutch flag even after their chief changed his mind. This broke out into war, and the Kommenda plundered Elmina villages. Next the Fante army blockaded Elmina. Two Cape Coast chiefs joined the blockade and were outlawed by British administrator H. T. Ussher. Arthur Kennedy arrived from Sierra Leone; but when he could not get Elmina to sever their tie with Asante, he approved the Fante action against Elmina.
After Kwakua Dua died in 1867, the Asante general Asamoa Nkwanta resented that his nephew was killed with the royal attendants who were to accompany the Asantehene into the next world. This delayed Kofi Karikari being enthroned on the golden stool as Asantehene. The Asante force in Krepi led by Nantwi was increased to 30,000, and Adu Bofo was sent to command the Elmina army by way of Krepi. Their leader Dompre appealed to Akwapim, Accra, and his Akyem people, stimulating W. H. Simpson to try to intervene diplomatically. The Akwamu arrested him for five days until Adu Bofo persuaded them to release Simpson so as not to provoke war with the British. In June 1869 two German missionaries were captured and taken to Kumasi, but in October Krepi inflicted a defeat on the Asante and Akwamu, encouraging the Akyem, Akwapim, and others to join them. The Asantehene ordered Adu Bofo to abandon the Krepi war; but the general persisted, and the Akwamu ambushed and killed Dompre a year later. Hennessy sent Plange, a former Dutch envoy, to Kumasi to negotiate; but Adu Bofo wanted 1,800 ounces of gold for the captured missionaries.
In 1869 the Dutch began negotiating their cession of forts to the British; but the treaty was not signed until 1871. Elmina had been paying the Asante rent since 1702, but in 1872 it was turned over to the British as its chief Kobina Edjan was deposed. Hennessy promised Asantehene Kofi Karikari that the British would double the payment, and he reopened the roads to Asante.
Meanwhile the Fante chiefs met at Mankesim in 1868 to form a confederation under a constitution. Ussher warned them the British would not support them in a war against Asante. James Africanus Horton of Sierra Leone had just published his book West African Countries and Peoples, in which he suggested self-government under British auspices with a Fante kingdom and a republic of Accra. Methodists and school-teachers were also influential in the constitutional movement. The Accra Native Confederation was formed in the eastern region in 1869, but it failed because it did not gain the support of local chiefs. The Mankesim Constitution was completed in 1871 for the purposes of uniting the Fante chiefs and improving the country, specifically the roads, schools, agriculture, industry, and mineral resources. Education was to include training in crafts and schools for girls. Each chief in the representative assembly was to be accompanied by an educated person. Administrator Salmon was so upset that the Fante did this without British authority that he had the three officials bringing him the document arrested but later released them on bail. The British lost an opportunity to encourage self-government when they neglected to support this constitution. Instead, in 1874 they included Lagos and established the Gold Coast Colony.
Early in 1873 the Asante army of about 15,000 or so crossed the Pra River and defeated the Assins, who were reinforced by Fante and Denkyira allies and British troops totaling about 25,000; but they were defeated again at Dunkwa. A letter from Asantehene Kofi Karikari claimed that the Asante were fighting not only for Elmina but also to regain authority over Denkyira, Assin, and Akyem. After the Asante, led by Amankwa Tai, won another victory at Jukwa, thousands took refuge in Cape Coast. Eight days later the British bombarded and destroyed Elmina. While people in Cape Coast starved, the Asante army suffered smallpox and dysentery. The Asantehene refused to let them come home, saying that the chiefs had wanted the war. Major-General Garnet Wolseley arrived in October 1873, and the conflict became known as the Sagrenti war from the African version of his name. His letter to the Asantehene was intercepted by Amankwa Tai, who replied with the same claims. He attacked the British at Abakrampa and then began a retreat back to Asante, fighting rearguard actions.
The Asantehene thought the war was over. However, the 1st West
India regiment arrived from Jamaica, and the Europeans had 2,500
men. Garnet sent a message to Kumasi, demanding all prisoners
and 50,000 ounces of gold; but the Asante had no large reserves
of gold. The British had superior rifles to the muzzle-loading
guns of the Asante, who had no cannons. After the people of Kumasi
departed, the Fante prisoners looted and set fires. The British
then blew up the palace and burned Kumasi in February 1874 before
marching back to the coast. The Asantehene's envoys overtook General
Garnet to accept his conditions, giving him 1,040 ounces of gold
as the most they could gather. Gonja and Dabomba rebelled against
Asante, and the Brong Confederation became independent under the
spiritual leadership of Krakye Dente. Gyaman, Sefwi, and Adansi
also threw off Asante rule. Asantehene Kofi Karikari signed the
Treaty of Fomena, but he was deposed that summer for having stolen
buried treasures of his predecessors. His successor Mensa Bonsu
had Kumasi rebuilt and reasserted his authority over rebellious
tribes, though the Juaben killed Kumasi traders. In October 1875
a Kumasi army attacked Juaben, and hundreds of Juaben captives
were sent to Sefwi. Others from Juaben took refuge in the British
Protectorate known as the Gold Coast Colony. The Asante only paid
4,000 of the 50,000 ounces of gold promised to the British in
In Sierra Leone the Temne ruler Pa Kokelly took the title King Tom and demanded a new treaty, because the Sierra Leone Company had claimed the land and would not pay him rent. When British soldiers arrived, King Tom attacked their fort in 1801; but they counter-attacked and burned his towns. The Temne rulers were thus dispossessed and agreed to a treaty in 1807. That year the British Parliament outlawed slave trading, as the Danes had three years earlier. The United States prohibited the slave trade in 1808, Sweden in 1813, the Dutch the next year, and France outlawed it for the second time in 1818. The British government made the settlement a colony in 1808, because the Sierra Leone Company was bankrupt. Freetown became the capital for the British governor and the anti-slave-trade courts. A naval squadron based there captured slave ships and liberated the Africans, who were called "recaptives." When the Napoleonic wars ended in 1815, the navy was no longer allowed to capture non-British ships. So the British made treaties to be able to continue this, although France and the United States used their own navies. Despite these efforts, the slave trade had doubled by 1840. From 1825 to 1865 the British navy used twenty ships to arrest 1,287 slave ships and free about 130,000 slaves; but during that period about 1,436,000 African slaves were transported to America.
Author Thomas Buxton proposed a humanitarian expedition up the Niger River to teach agriculture and Christianity in 1841; but British public opinion was shocked when all 48 Europeans lost their lives. The British law-courts decided in 1848 that slave traders could be dispossessed. Brazil stopped importing slaves in the 1850s, and the emancipation of slaves in the United States brought an end to most slave trading in West Africa by 1866. The British began exporting timber from Sierra Leone in 1816; but by the 1860s the available forests had been cut. Children of the recaptives were mostly Christian and were called Creoles. Church missionaries established a grammar school at Freetown in 1845 and a girls school in 1849.
James Africanus Horton was born near Freetown in Sierra Leone on June 1, 1835. He was well educated, learning Greek and Latin at the missionary grammar school. He studied five years at King's College in London and earned his M.D. at Edinburgh University in 1859. He served as a doctor in the army for twenty years in West Africa, retiring as a lieutenant-general. He published several treatises on Africa and medicine, including The Diseases of Tropical Climate and Their Treatment in 1874. In his 1868 book West African Countries and Peoples he refuted the fallacious doctrines of anthropologists about Africans, discussed conditions in the various parts of West Africa, and recommended self-government and specific improvements. He quoted abolitionist Thomas Clarkson, who said in 1818, "Africa ought to be allowed to have a fair chance of raising her character in the scale of the civilized world."3 He argued that differences in cultures arose because of external circumstances. He believed that Africans would improve and become prominent in the civilized world.
Horton found that Christian ethics, science, and literature
were being taught in Sierra Leone. For that country he recommended
a constitutional monarchy with an elected assembly and a senate.
On the Gold Coast he observed that domestic slavery caused laziness
and immorality. He advised monarchy for Fante but a republic for
Accra. Horton noted that among the Ibos women had a superior social
status, though a large sum had to be paid to raise an Ibo to a
higher social rank. For Sierra Leone he recommended extending
the franchise, improving education and making Fourbah Bay College
the University of Western Africa, forming a municipal council,
establishing a health officer, extending British protection to
merchants up the rivers, abolishing the sending of liberated Africans
to the West Indies and re-introducing apprenticeship, improving
the water supply of Freetown, introducing new plants and encouraging
agriculture, raising money for health and industrial development,
enrolling a militia, forming a national bank and a post office,
legislating vaccinations, supplying medical doctors to villages,
and creating parks. Concerned that Muslims had gained supremacy
in Gambia, Horton advised strengthening British authority there.
For the Gold Coast he suggested convening a congress of kings
at Cape Coast and at Accra, a resident consul at Kumasi, improved
education including an industrial school, the abolition of slavery,
and improved law and order.
The American Colonization Society was founded in 1816, and three years later the United States Congress appropriated $100,000 to return illegally imported slaves to Africa; but the Society had to buy the land. In 1820 a U. S. navy vessel shipped 88 immigrants to Sherbro near Sierra Leone; because this settlement lacked fresh water and was infested with malaria, they soon moved to Fourah Bay. In 1822 a U. S. navy ship forced the rulers of Mesurado to cede some land. In December native chief Sao Boso agreed to this in a peace treaty, and he provided them with a trade route through Bopolu. As settlements extended along the coast, slave traders had more difficulty. Immigrants believed they had the rights of United States citizens; but the settlement was governed by the Colonization Society, and riots often caused the white agent to flee. In 1824 a Colonial Council was established, and the settlement was named Liberia with the capital Monrovia. The white Jehudi Ashmun governed the colony from 1822 to 1830. By then the United States had spent $264,710 transporting 260 rescued slaves to Africa, but in 1834 the Jackson administration reduced the budget. Colonization societies from New York, Pennsylvania, Maryland, and Mississippi contributed to the effort. The first general elections were held in 1834, though Africans from Brazil complained of discrimination. Two years later the Society affirmed the citizenship of these New Georgians, but native Africans still lacked their rights.
In 1838 the Commonwealth of Liberia was based on a constitution, though the Maryland Society declined to join. The white governor was replaced in 1841 by the mulatto lieutenant governor Joseph J. Roberts. In 1847 Liberia became an independent nation with a constitution written by a white Harvard law professor. The new nation was made up of 80,000 natives, 7,000 immigrants, and 15,000 rescued slaves. The Maryland settlement declared its independence in 1854; but after they were defeated in a war by the Greboes two years later, they joined Liberia. Franchise was given to residents who had lived there for three years in a "civilized Western" way.
The United States did not recognize Liberia until President Lincoln promised in 1862 not to interfere with its government. That year Liberia College was founded, but the emphasis was on politics rather than on economic development. Edward Blyden led the first immigration from the West Indies in 1865. The opposition True Whig Party lost every election until 1869 when they elected the wealthy African Edward J. Roye as president. That year law and taxes were extended inland under a new Department of the Interior. The Republican Roberts became president again in 1872 until 1876. Christian converts organized the Grebo Reunited Kingdom in 1873, because they felt they had lost trade and too much of their land to immigrants. The Greboes had an army of 7,000 equipped with rifles and defeated a thousand Liberians in 1875. This third tribal war led to more liberal laws for African tribes in Liberia.
Edward Wilmot Blyden was born in the Virgin Islands on August 3, 1832. After living briefly in Venezuela and the United States, he emigrated to Liberia in 1851. He became proficient in all the romance languages, plus Greek, Latin, Hebrew, Arabic, and several West African dialects. His 1856 pamphlet A Voice from Bleeding Africa called for "immediate emancipation" and described the accomplishments of thirty Africans and Afro-Americans. In 1857 he wrote Vindication of the Negro Race to refute theories of Negro inferiority and promote African independence, praising the Mande and Fulbe Muslims. In an Independence Day address he criticized the Liberians for being too much in a hurry to become rich and indulge in extravagance. The next year he was ordained a Presbyterian minister and became principal of Alexander High School in Monrovia. He visited the United States in 1861 and 1862, urging Africans to come to Liberia, because they would not be treated equally in America. He was appointed professor of classics at Liberia College, and from 1864 to 1866 he also served as Secretary of State, arranging for 346 skilled Barbadians to emigrate to Liberia; but lack of funds prevented other West Indians from coming. He designed reforms in 1870 for President Roye to reconstruct Liberian finances and promote general education, but the 100,000 pounds borrowed from England had very high interest.
Blyden clashed with mulattoes, because he believed they did
not identify with the Negro race. His black Whig party challenged
the mulatto Republicans led by J. J. Roberts. In 1871 he went
to Sierra Leone for two years and promoted Liberia, hoping they
would unite. He urged the British to protect West Africa and prophesied
that colonialism would be temporary. He led official expeditions
to Falaba and Timbo. He believed that African Muslims usually
had greater self-esteem, and he encouraged Muslim-Christian cooperation.
He advised the teaching of Arabic to African Christians so that
they could understand Islamic culture and communicate better with
other Africans. He was proud of Negro history and promoted pan-Africanism.
He recommended an independent non-denominational church for Africans
and a secular West African university. He founded a weekly newspaper
in Freetown in 1872 and a monthly journal two years later. His
writings condemned slavery and encouraged Afro-Americans to emigrate
To the east of the Gold Coast and west of the Niger River the old Oyo and Benin kingdoms declined in the 19th century. When the Oyo army mutinied about 1797, Kakanfo Afonja joined with the Basorun and war chiefs to compel the Alafin Aole to commit suicide. The next two alafins Adebo and Maku had little power, as provincial chiefs acted independently for the next twenty years. Afonja controlled Ekun Osi and Ibolo until he was destroyed by the Muslim jihad. Some of the Yoruba recaptives who returned from Sierra Leone were Muslims, and they encouraged Muslim slaves to revolt as free men, forming a force called the Jama'a. Afonja refused to become a Muslim and was killed by the Jama'a. His successor Toyeje of Ogbomoso tried to reconquer Ilorin but failed. After the charismatic Muslim priest Alimi died, his son Abdul Solagberu kept Ilorin independent and expanded Muslim power, being recognized as emir by the Sokoto caliphate. As Oyo control faded, Owu traders tried to stop the kidnapping and riots. Ife challenged Owu but was defeated. Then Ife joined with Ijebu to besiege Owu for the first half of the 1820s. In this Owu war the Ijebu used muskets for the first time in this region. Owu was razed and not rebuilt. About 1830 Sodeke led Owu and Egba in founding a new capital at Abeokuta. Prince Atiba rejected Islam in Ilorin and went to the village Ago-Oja and renamed it Oyo as the war chiefs appointed him alafin about 1835.
Many of the ex-slaves in Sierra Leone were Yoruba, especially Egba, and in 1838 some returned, having learned English and Christianity. Ibadan gained strength and took on Ilorin at the battle of Osogbo in 1840, using muskets to defeat Ilorin's cavalry. Christian missionaries began arriving in the area. Meanwhile the Dahomey kingdom captured slaves for sale and cultivation. They fought a war with the Egba from 1842 until 1853, when missionaries persuaded Egba to end the siege. Dahomey led by Gezo (r. 1818-58) had attacked Abeokuta in 1851, but European arms helped the Egbado defeat them. The demand for slaves decreased after Brazil banned importation in 1850. The next year a British anti-slave-trade squadron bombarded Lagos, which became a British consulate in 1853 and was annexed as a colony in 1861. In the early 1850s Ibadan used armed force to take over towns in Ekiti and Akoko. In 1860 Adelus succeeded his father Atiba as Oyo alafin, but Ijaye's Kurunmi refused to recognize him. Ibadan helped Oyo besiege Ijaye into starvation in 1862. Kurunmi died, and Ibadan took over Ibarapa and let Oyo have the Upper Ogum. Two years later Dahomey attacked Abeokuta, but again they were defeated. Ibadan's expansion to the east further shrunk the kingdom of Benin, which suffered a civil war from 1854 to 1880. In 1871 Momoh Latosisa became Ibadan's first Muslim ruler. In 1863 the British and French had divided this coastal region at the Yewa River. In 1872 the British helped open a route through Ondo to Okeigbo, Ife, and Ibadan.
While the slave trade from West Africa was being greatly reduced, the Portuguese exported about 25,000 captives a year from Mozambique in the first half of the 19th century. In 1800 Kilwa was the biggest slaving port between Zanzibar and Mozambique. By 1807 the French had 49,000 slaves on the island of Mauritius. Sayyid Sa'id al-Busa'idi was only 13 years old when he inherited the Omani throne at Muscat in 1806, and he ruled for fifty years. Mombasa governor Ahmad ibn Sa'id al-Mazrui (r. 1783-1814) had submitted to al-Busa'idi sovereignty in 1784, but in 1807 he led the attack that replaced the Omani governor at Pate with their own man. Yet when the Mazrui attacked Lamu in 1813, they were defeated. Lamu then asked for Busa'idi protection. The next year Ahmad was succeeded by his son Abdullah (r. 1814-25), who appealed to the British at Bombay to protect Mombasa's independence. British captain Smee had described the misery of some 150,000 slaves on Zanzibar during his visit in 1811, and he complained that the Indians, who were British subjects, were being excessively taxed. Sayyid Sa'id sent 4,000 Omanis to attack the Mazrui at Pate in 1817.
In 1822 the people of Pemba helped the Omanis drive out the Mazrui governor Rizike, and Sayyid Sa'id and his Lamu governor kept the Mazrui candidate Fumoluti from taking power at Pate. Led by their hero Mbaruk, the Mazrui at Mombasa again appealed to the British for protection against the Omani navy; but the British had just made a treaty with Sa'id to abolish the slave trade. After an Omani squadron captured two leaders from Mogadishu and demanded a $2,000 ransom, this city formed an alliance with Merka, Barawa, Pate, and Mombasa against Sa'id. In December 1823 a British captain refused permission for the Mazrui at Mombasa to fly the British flag. Two months later the Omani fleet invaded, and Shaykh Sulayman Mazrui engaged them with the cannons of Fort Jesus. When a British warship arrived, both sides stopped fighting. Captain William F. Owen saw that Mombasa had put up a home-made British flag, and on his own authority he promised the Mazrui protection against the Omanis. Owen believed the Omanis to be the worst slavers, and he got the Mazrui to promise to abolish the slave trade at Mombasa. They wanted control over Pemba, and Owen took Mbaruk with him to Pemba; but Owen merely asked them to respect the rights of those from Mombasa. He went to Zanzibar and persuaded its governor Abdullah to release the two imprisoned chiefs from Mogadishu. In 1826 a Mazrui council at Mombasa decided they had not ceded Fort Jesus to the British and that the agreement was nullified, because they had not been given control over Pemba. British captain Arland then ordered his troops to evacuate Mombasa.
The Mazrui capitulated to Sayyid Sa'id and signed a peace treaty in January 1828; but Sa'id quickly broke his word by installing his men in Fort Jesus. Mogadishu refused to submit and was sacked by the Omani navy. Sa'id ordered Pemba governor Nasir bin Sultan, an old enemy of the Masrui, to become governor of Mombasa. The Masrui revolted against this second violation of the treaty and besieged the fort for three months until the starving garrison surrendered. Nasir was imprisoned; but when the Omani fleet arrived, the Masrui cut his throat. Mombasa shaykh Salim bin Ahmed (r. 1826-35) accepted a new treaty but would not let Omanis in the fort. Yet Sa'id kept attacking Mombasa. After Salim died in 1835, his son Rashid seized the fort; but his opponents held the town. Some of the Mazrui, disgusted with this conflict, called in Sa'id; but Rashid refused Sa'id's offers to leave. Sa'id sent his son Khalid to invite the Mazrui and then treacherously arrest them. Thus in 1837 the leaders of the Mazrui family were deported, and all died in prison. After Pate revolted in 1839 and killed the Omani governor and some of his Baluchi soldiers, Sa'id merely assigned the Lamu governor to rule Pate. That year Captain Robert Cogan estimated that 40,000 slaves were sold every year in the Zanzibar market.
In 1840 Sayyid Sa'id moved from Muscat to Zanzibar, where large numbers of slaves worked the clove plantations for the rich. He made commercial treaties with the United States in 1833, allowing them extra-territorial rights, with Britain in 1839, and with France in 1844. Sa'id had farmed out the taxes to the Indian firm Wat Bania for $70,000 a year; but they soon passed it over to Jairam Sewji for twenty years, and the customs master Taria Topan dominated Zanzibar after Sa'id's death. Because Sa'id got rid of their Mazrui rulers, Pemba paid his taxes and accepted an Arab garrison.
Sa'id tried to conquer independent Siu, which was ruled by Matata bin Mbaraka; but after five expeditions Sa'id gave up in 1845 when his commander Hamad bin Ahmad and 300 men were killed in an ambush. Two years later Sa'id sent a judge from Zanzibar to negotiate peace with the sultan of Pate, and the 5% customs duties on exports and imports were reinstated. Sa'id generally tried to preserve peace so that he could collect these duties. After a French adventurer named Maisan was murdered by brigands in the interior in 1845, French officials pressured the reluctant Sa'id to send some Baluchi soldiers to kill and ruin villages in revenge. That year the British consul Atkins Hamerton persuaded Sa'id to sign a treaty banning the export of slaves from his African dominions or the importation into his Asian possessions. Yet after 1850 Hamerton estimated that about 450,000 slaves worked on the two islands of Zanzibar and Pemba. Sa'id's economic policy simplified customs to a 5% duty on all imports, produced most of the world's cloves on Zanzibar, promoted the caravan trade in Africa, welcomed trade with Europeans, and encouraged Indians to handle business in Zanzibar. Between 1830 and his death in 1856 Sa'id multiplied his African revenue ten-fold.
By the time Sa'id died in 1856 Zanzibar had become a British
protectorate. His son Majid took over Zanzibar and was supported
by the British in his conflict with his brother Thuwain, who ruled
at Muscat and tried to take over Zanzibar in 1859; but a British
man-of-war persuaded him to turn back. In 1861 a man-of-war helped
suppress the pirates ravaging Zanzibar. That year the British
granted the right to hire Indian "coolies." Also in
1861 Governor General Canning of India arbitrated the Omani succession
dispute by deciding they should rule their separate realms, and
Majid should pay Thuwain 40,000 crowns a year. France accepted
the agreement the next year. Majid stopped paying the tribute
in 1866, when Thuwain was murdered by his son Salim, though for
two more years it was sent to the governor of Bombay. In 1861
Ahmad ibn Fumuloti, who was called Simba (Lion), joined with Mutaka
ibn Mbaraka and led a revolt that destroyed the Busa'idi fort
at Siu; but Majid led the expedition that restored order and rebuilt
the fort. In 1866 two sons of Mutaka were arrested while on an
embassy to Zanzibar and soon died in the prison at Mombasa. Despite
agreements, in the 1860s Zanzibar and Pemba were absorbing about
10,000 slaves a year. Kilwa declined as its slave trade diminished,
and it was devastated by epidemics in 1857 and 1870. Owen observed
that the slave trade also ruined the economy around Mozambique.
In 1873 the British agent John Kirk by threatening to blockade
Zanzibar got Sayyid Barghash ibn Sa'id to sign a treaty banning
the slave trade by sea and promising to protect all liberated
slaves, but this and the supplementary treaty of 1875 were often
About 1800 Andrianampoinimerina began expanding his Imerina kingdom on Madagascar. His successor Radama I (r. 1810-28) subdued Bezanozano rebels and gained access to the sea at Tamatave in 1812. Radama signed two treaties with the British in 1817, accepting money and arms in exchange for outlawing the slave trade in Madagascar. In 1820 the British refused to pay the subsidies, but James Hastie persuaded Radama to renew the treaty and allow British missionaries. By 1829 the London Missionary Society (LMS) had built 23 schools for 2300 students in Madagascar. They put the Malagasy language in written form by using the Latin alphabet and translated the Bible. Radama recruited an army of 15,000, modernized with English guns and cannon. In 1822 this force defeated the Menabe in the west. The Sakalava continued to resist, though Boina was invaded and submitted. Most of the island was under Merina control by the time Radama died from a licentious life-style at the age of 36. He was succeeded by his cousin and first wife Ranavalona I (r. 1828-61), who was advised by two clan leaders Rainiharo and Rainijohary. In December 1828 her government informed the British that the treaty was cancelled. Trade between Madagascar and the islands of Mauritius and Bourbon was banned. The next year the French bombarded and invaded Tintingue and Tamatave. In 1832 Queen Ranavalona prohibited baptism, and three years later preaching Christianity was outlawed. This persecution killed many Christians, but the faith spread.
In the early 1840s the French acquired the islands of Nossi-bé and Mayotta. Despite agreements banning the slave trade, in 1843 they introduced the "free labor emigration system" in which they purchased slaves from Arab traders, usually at Kilwa, then formally set them free so they could "emigrate" to the island plantations. After the revolution of 1848 the French changed the name of the island Bourbon to Réunion.
By 1841 the Sakalava chiefs had fled to nearby islands, and the French were supporting their claims to western Madagascar. In 1844 foreigners were made subject to Malagasy law. Fearing they could be enslaved, the next year a French and British squadron bombarded and invaded Tamatave; but those captured in this failure were beheaded. Queen Ranavalona expelled foreign traders and suspended overseas commerce, except with the United States. Modernization continued though, as de Lastelle helped establish sugar plantations and a factory to produce sugar and rum. The queen got Jean Laborde to build an industrial complex at Mantasoa that employed 20,000 workers to produce guns, cannon, glass, soap, etc. After Mauritius and Réunion paid Ranavolana $15,000 compensation, the trade ban was lifted in 1853. Foreigners were allowed back to Madagascar, and in 1857 Joseph Lambert plotted a coup d'état with Laborde, de Lastelle, the Rainiharo clan, and Christians.
Queen Ranavalona went into isolation and designated her son
Rakoto Radama as her successor. When she died in 1861, King Radama
II immediately opened Madagascar to foreign traders, investors,
and missionaries. The next year he signed treaties with the French
and the British that exempted them from import and export duties
and gave them other privileges. When Radama II tried to remove
the leaders of the two prominent clans, he was strangled to death.
The oligarchs made his cousin and wife, Queen Rasoherina, agree
to renounce alcohol and follow the advice of the pro-European
majority in her council. In 1864 army commander Rainilaiarivony
took the place of the prime minister. He married the queen and
her successor as well. In 1865 the British agreed to pay ten percent
duties on imports and exports. The French insisted Madagascar
pay an indemnity of 1,200,000 francs, but in 1868 they agreed
to a treaty forbidding the French from buying land in Madagascar.
A code of 101 articles was promulgated, and more were added later.
By then there were 153,000 Christians in Madagascar, and Queen
Ranavalona II converted in 1869 to the Protestant faith of the
British. In 1872 Rainilaiarivony modernized the Malagasy army
by employing a British instructor. The next year an expedition
brought Bara under control.
In the interior west of Lake Victoria, Kyabuga's son Semakokiro ruled Buganda from about 1797 to 1814 and increased his power through war with his neighbors and by selling slaves, ivory, and livestock to Swahili traders for Indian cotton and other goods. Semakokiro was so afraid of being overthrown by a relative that he killed all of his grown sons except three and later murdered about seventy of his in-laws. Karagwe king Ndagara (r. 1832-55) also expanded his Haya kingdom, but he and his son Rumanika allowed the people conquered to keep their own chiefs. By 1830 east and central Africa were being ravaged for captives, as tens of thousands of slaves were exported every year. Slaves were traded for guns loaded from the muzzle. After Europeans began using breech-loading rifles in 1866, tens of thousands of the old guns were sold to Africa annually, greatly increasing the violence of the battles. Buganda kabaka Suna II killed all his 58 brothers, and he bought many guns from Zanzibar traders. His successor Mutesa (r. 1856-1884) had about a thousand guns by 1872. Sixty raids using armed canoes on Lake Victoria were recorded during his reign, and his Buganda army used guns and spears to attack Busoga, Bunyoro, Ankole, and others. After a long decline, Bunyoro began fighting back more successfully under Mukama Kamurasi, who died in 1869 and was succeeded by another strong leader, Kabarega. He reformed his army and bought guns from Khartoum as well as Zanzibar.
These larger kingdoms developed class structures such as that of the cattle-owning Tutsi over the farming Hutu in Ruanda. Ruanda king Mutara II began using warfare more often in the 1840s, and his successor Kigeri raided as far away as Ankole. Kigeri bought guns from Zanzibaris and made all able men serve in his army. Leaders such as Horombo of the Chagi around 1840 extended their authority over local chiefs and built stone forts. He was killed fighting the Masai, who fought a series of wars after the famine of 1836. Chiefs such as Rengwa and Masaki could not unite the Chagi as well as Rindi of the Moshi Chaga did in the 1860s. Johann Krapf landed on Zanzibar in 1844 and was given a helpful letter by Sa'id. He was the first Christian missionary to explore the interior of Kenya and observed that the Masai were dangerous. Krapf visited Shambaa (Usambara) ruler Kimweri ye Nyumbai (r. 1836-62) at Vuga in 1848 and 1852 and estimated that his kingdom southeast of Mount Kilimanjaro contained half a million people. Kimweri was a very effective autocrat and made detailed arrangements for the hospitality of strangers. After Kimweri died, the Shambaa kingdom broke apart. The fighting between the tribes allowed thousands of captives to be sold as slaves in Pangani. The Masai engaged in another series of wars between 1860 and 1864.
David Livingstone came from Scotland to Cape Town in 1841 as a missionary doctor. He married Moffat's daughter Mary in 1845, and he helped discover Lake Ngami in 1849. After Boers destroyed his home at Kolobeng and attacked his African friends in 1852, he set out on a long journey. In 1854 he pioneered a northern trade route between Angola and the southern Kololo. From Luanda on the west coast he crossed Africa, exploring the Zambesi and reaching Quilimane in Mozambique in 1856. He returned to England as a hero and wrote a detailed account of his adventures in his Missionary Travels and Researches in South Africa, which soon sold 70,000 copies. He made eloquent speeches against the Arab slave trade and for Christianity and commerce but downplayed the dangers, diseases, and sacrifices he suffered in order to promote the development of Africa. He believed that the British had a divine mission to elevate those less fortunate. He calculated that for every slave brought to Zanzibar four or five lives were lost. British consul Rigby at Zanzibar believed that only one woman slave in twenty bore children.
In 1858 Richard Burton and J. H. Speke explored Lake Tanganyika and Lake Victoria, finding the source of the Nile. The British government sponsored Livingstone's Zambesi expedition in 1858. Observing the hunting for slaves and ivory by the Arabs and Portuguese in the Kongo and the Shire highlands, he hoped that a British administration would bring improvement; but the British authorities recalled him in 1863. In his 1865 book, Narrative of an Expedition to the Zambesi and its Tributaries, Livingstone described the cruelty of the slavers in the Lake Nyasa region. At Zanzibar he observed hundreds of slaves being sold each day and estimated the island imported about 15,000 slaves per year. After this visit to England, Livingstone went back to East Africa in 1866 with only Africans and Asians. After Nguni raids forced them to enter Portuguese territory, some of his followers left and as an excuse reported at Zanzibar that Livingstone had been killed. He went on and explored Lake Tanganyika and the Lualaba River, though he was mistaken about the source of the Nile. He sent forty letters, and only one got through. The New York Herald hired Henry Morton Stanley to find Livingstone, which he did by Lake Tanganyika in October 1871. Livingstone refused to leave Africa and died in May 1873. He was very sympathetic to Africans, and Livingstone's explorations and writings stimulated great interest in Africa, commerce, and colonialism.
From 1780 to 1830 Portuguese Angola exported between 15,000 and 20,000 slaves annually, mostly to Brazil, but the slave trade declined rapidly in the 1850s. When Rodrigues Graça informed Lunda chiefs that Portugal had outlawed the slave trade, they noted that Portugal was still sending convicts to Angola and asked why they could not transport convicts to Portugal. About a third of the slaves exported from Luanda and Benguela in the past century had been from Lunda territories. Most of the 2,000 Europeans in Luanda were deported criminals, and its military garrison was mostly African convicts. The rest of Luanda consisted of a few hundred mulattoes and free Africans and about 3,000 slaves. Lunda mwant yav Naweji ya Ditende (c. 1821-53) of the Kalagne dynasty increased his power and began using firearms from Angola. After a few years of conflict mwant yav Muteba ya Chikombe (c. 1857-73) welcomed the great caravans and ruled in peace. The Portuguese colonial power suffered military defeats at Cassanga in 1862 and in the Dembo country a decade later.
After the Portuguese royal monopoly on ivory was abolished in 1834, Chokwe hunters used their skill with guns to develop this trade. As the elephants diminished, the Chokwe hunted them in Lunda territory, giving half the ivory to the Lunda. The Chokwe traded their ivory for women and increased their population. Agriculture spread, and by the 1850s the upper Kasai was running out of cultivable farmland. In 1840 Luanda founded a trading port at Moçamedes for the highland ivory market. In the 1840s wax from Chokwe increased this trade from Benguela and Luanda thirty-fold. In the 1860s Moçamedes developed a fishing industry with the Portuguese using slave labor that could no longer be legally exported. In the late 1860s the Chokwe began to produce rubber. The Kasanje in the central plateau found their Imbangala territory bypassed by new commercial routes, and in 1850 disputes led to a war with the Portuguese; by the 1870s the relationship between the Kasanje plain and Angola had been reduced to a few Portuguese cattle ranchers and sugar planters. The Portuguese established a garrison at the English settlement of Ambriz in 1855. In the 1860s Luanda began to increase its export of agricultural products such as cotton, coffee, beeswax, and palm oil.
From the east Swahili-Arabs penetrated Zambia, which was ruled
by a series of Kazembes. The Swahili-Arabs used guns to hunt for
ivory, much as the Chokwe did further west. The Bemba kingdom
made contact with Swahili-Arabs south of Lake Tanganyika about
1850. After Bemba chitimukulu Chileshye died about 1860,
Chitapankwa eventually gained power and began to trade for guns
to develop Bemba slave raiding and ivory hunting as well as to
fight off the Nguni in the east. The Luba kingdom between the
Lualaba River and Lake Tanganyika expanded from 1780 to 1870 during
the three long reigns of Ilunga Sunga, his son Kumwimba, and Ilunga
Kalala. In the 1850s the Nyamwezi developed commerce as caravan
operators, and they bought ivory and Katanga copper from the Kazembe.
The Sumbwa Nyamwezi began trading for copper directly from the
Katanga and became known as the Yeke. Their leader Msiri used
firearms to dominate his neighbors, taking captives to carry ivory
and copper to Unyamwezi, which between 1861 and 1875 was dominated
by Swahili-Arabs. Yet Ntemi Mkasiwa retained political control
in Unyanyembe, and the Arabs supported the war against the expelled
ntemi Mnywasele. Tutsis migrated and served in the Nyamwezi
army. The Yeke campaigned against the Luba, and by 1870 Msiri
was challenging the power of Kazembe. Through links with the Lovale
he was able to trade ivory, slaves, rubber, and wax with Ovimbundu
in southern Angola.
A famine in 1802 pushed refugees into the camps of the Ndwandwe, Ngwane, and Mthethwa. In 1804 Mthethwa chief Jobe learned of his son Godongwana's plot to overthrow him and sent him into exile. After Jobe died in 1809, his son returned and was called "the outcast" (Dingiswayo). He became chief and wisely allowed the opponents he defeated to keep their chiefs and cattle, increasing his army. Dingiswayo gained control over the trade route to Delagoa Bay and united several northern Nguni kingdoms into his Mthethwa confederacy. Shaka was the son of Zulu leader Senzangakona by the Langeni woman Nandi, and he was brought up by his parents' tribes, the Langeni and Qwabe. Shaka at 16 became a herder for the Mthethwa, and six years later he was conscripted into this army. Because of his bravery and military ideas, Dingiswayo made Shaka commander of a regiment. After defeating a Buthelezi champion in a duel with a stabbing spear, Shaka developed the use of this new weapon into an effective tactic.
When Senzangakona died about 1816, he was succeeded by his son Sigujana; but Nandi's son by a later marriage, Ngwadi, killed Sigujana. Dingiswayo's warriors then helped Shaka become Zulu chief. Shaka expanded the Zulu army from 500 to 2,000 and instilled discipline. He did not allow his soldiers to marry until they were old enough for the reserves. Surviving enemies they conquered were incorporated into the Zulu regiments, but they were discriminated against until they learned the Zulu dialect. Dingiswayo's rivals, Ndwandwe chief Zwide and Ngwane chief Sobhuza, quarreled with each other, and the Ngwane fled north, where they overcame some Nguni. In 1818 Zwide invited Dingiswayo to peace talks and had him assassinated. The Mthethwa fled across Mfolozi River, and Shaka merged the Mthethwa confederacy into his Zulu nation. Shaka and chiefs he trusted judged individuals and executed them for murder, robbery, rape, adultery, treason, cowardice, and spying. Zululand was shared by all, as no one held private property, except that ivory traded at Delagoa Bay for beads belonged to Shaka. The Zulu defeated the Ndwandwe in 1819.
The Bantu-speaking Nguni have a humanistic proverb, "Man becomes human through other humans."4 About 1820 the Nguni led by Soshangane fled from the Zulu to Mozambique, where they plundered the Shona, collected tribute from the Portuguese, and overcame his Nguni rivals Zwangendaba and Nxaba. The latter turned west and invaded the peaceful region of the Urozwi, destroying the great cities at Zimbabwe and Khami. Matiwane led the Ngwane west and attacked the Hlubi, killing their chief Mtimkulu and taking most of their herds. Those fleeing south joined the Mfengu. Mpangazita led the Hlubi in an invasion of the Tlokwa, causing Ma Nthatisi to lead her people west across the Drakensberg mountains. In 1822 the Tlokwa defeated the Mfengu, whose survivors migrated north and eventually established the Lozi state. Zwide's grandson Mzilikazi defected from Shaka and led the Khumalo (later called the Ndebele) across the Vaal River. In 1825 Matiwane's Ngwane defeated the Hlubi, killing Mpangazita.
Jakot Msimbithi was the son of a chief, but he had been seized in a commando raid and was apprenticed to a Boer farmer. He became an interpreter for the British, but he and war-doctor Nxele were captured during the Xhosa attack on Grahamstown and were sentenced to life imprisonment on Robben Island. After Nxele drowned in an escape attempt, Msimbithi was taken as an interpreter on the HMS Leven before being employed by Lt. Francis Farewell in a journey to Zululand. During a storm at sea, Msimbithi escaped and went to warn Shaka that white traders were coming. In 1823 Farewell and Henry Fynn, who had studied the native languages, lied when they told Shaka that they were envoys from King George. After Shaka was stabbed by a Ndwandwe spy, Fynn treated the nearly mortal wound with chamomile tea for several days; Fynn was given much of Natal and acquired a harem of Zulu wives. Both Fynn and Farewell published diaries portraying Shaka as barbaric so that the British public would be moved to take over the territory where they now owned so much land. According to them, Shaka was so afraid of being overthrown that he had killed most of his male relatives. He even was said to have killed wives who became pregnant so that he would not have any children. Every man was conscripted into the Zulu army, while the old and unfit were exterminated.
By 1824 Shaka had conquered all the clans in the region south to the Xhosa. Meanwhile Farewell was building a fort at Port Natal and claiming it was British territory. After Zwide died, Shaka intervened in the Ndwandwe succession. In 1826 Fynn and Farewell aided his Zulu army of 40,000 in a bloody battle against Ndwandwe that destroyed that tribe; the refugees with their chief Soshangane joined Mzilikazi, the Ndebele chief who had defected from Shaka five years before. Nathaniel Isaacs, who failed to gain the ivory he coveted, wrote a lurid account of Shaka that was published as his Travels and Adventures in Eastern Africa in 1836. He reported that Shaka had 170 young men and isiGodlo girls executed, because he suspected them of adultery.
When his mother Nandi died in 1827, Shaka demanded that his entire nation mourn; 12,000 men were ordered to guard her grave for a year. Fynn reported that thousands died from exhaustion or were killed for disobeying severe restrictions against planting crops, drinking milk, or having sexual intercourse. After three months of this, Gala asked Shaka to put a stone in his stomach and pointed out that others besides Nandi die. Shaka then rewarded him and cancelled the mourning punishments. In March 1828 Shaka tried to send an embassy to King George that was led by former British naval officer James King and chief Sotobe; but Major Josias Cloete at Algoa Bay denied them access to the governor, and they failed to bring back the youth elixir Shaka most wanted. Shaka's army defeated the Mpondo but avoided encountering the British, who mistook chief Matiwane and his Ngwane for Zulu and defeated them at Mbholompo. According to Isaacs, Shaka's Zulu invaded Mozambique to attack Soshangane's Nguni and lost 5,000 men in battle, and another 15,000 starved or died of malaria on the march home. Outrage over the suffering caused by these losses and the mourning punishments motivated Dingane and Mhlangana to stab their half-brother Shaka to death on September 24, 1828.
Dingane and Mhlangana first attacked and destroyed Ngwadi and his followers. Dingane was supported by the chief induna (Zulu official) Mbopha, and they executed Mhlangane. Dingane then had Mbopha killed and restored Sotobe. This caused Qwabe chief Nqeto to organize a rebellion and flee south through Natal. Dingane fought Mzilikazi's Ndebele and Sobhuza. He gave Matiwane refuge but later had the old chief killed. Dingane sent a present to the British, hoping to develop trade and asking for a missionary; but he demanded tribute from the Portuguese at Delagoa Bay. After they refused, in 1833 he sent Zulu warriors that drove the Portuguese out and killed their governor Ribeiro. Xhosa interpreter Jacot Msimbithi warned Dingane that the white men were coming; but Fynn made him suspect Msimbithi, whom Dingane also killed. Missionary Allen Gardiner began giving the Zulus religious instruction in 1835, and the same year he mediated a treaty between the traders at Port Natal and Dingane. The next year Dingane used guns in an expedition against Sobhuza. By 1837 six American missionaries were in Natal and Zululand, and Anglican Francis Owen began a mission in the Zulu capital at Mgungundlovu.
Mzilikazi considered himself a Zulu, and his Nguni tribe of Ndebele grew to several thousand and attacked the Tswana and Rolong. His warriors stole cattle, destroyed towns, and captured women and children for the Ndebele tribe. Between 1825 and 1834 the Ndebele ravaged the central and northern Transvaal. Young men lived in military settlements until their regiment was victorious in battle. Later they were allowed to marry and farm for the Ndebele while still performing as reserves during wars. Although a few private individuals could own cattle, no one could slaughter livestock without Mzilikazi's permission. In 1829 the Korana defeated the Ndebele using guns; but in a surprise night raid the Ndebele captured the guns. That year Mzilikazi first met the missionary Robert Moffat, and their close friendship lasted many years. In 1832 the Ndebele defeated an invasion by Dingane's Zulu, and Mzilikazi moved his capital west to Hurutshe country; their chief Mokgatla fled, and many Hurutshe joined the Ndebele tribe.
In 1835 Ndebele envoys went to Cape Town and signed a friendship
treaty. In 1836 the Ndebele attacked Voortrekkers at Vegkop; but
the next year these Boers, allied with Griqua and Rolong, attacked
and killed more than four hundred Ndebele at Mosega, destroying
fifteen kraals. After suffering an attack by the Zulu and another
by Voortrekkers led by Hendrik Potgieter in October 1837, Mzilikazi
led his people north across the Limpopo River. The Ndebele ravaged
the Urozwi, but they eventually got along and stayed. Another
skirmish between Potgieter and the Ndebele occurred in 1847, but
five years later Mzilikazi agreed to a treaty allowing the Boers
to hunt in Ndebele territory. Moffat found Mzilikazi physically
incapacitated when he visited him in 1854; he accepted missionaries
in his country and ruled the Ndebele until he died in 1868. A
majority of the indunas selected Lobengula as Ndebele king;
but one regiment resisted, and Lobengula had to win a civil war
to gain the throne.
In the 1830s Zwangendaba, after he was defeated by Soshangane and Nxaba, led his Nguni north across the Zambesi into Zambia, Tanzania, and Malawi, while those led by Nxaba stayed in Urozwi raiding the cattle of the Shona. In 1835 Nxaba ventured north of the Zambesi River also, but he was killed fighting the Kololo. Zwangendaba welcomed various peoples into his Nguni nation and settled at Mapupo. After Zwangendaba suspected witchcraft and destroyed the "great house," he died about 1848. His Nguni nation split into five kingdoms. Three factions moved south to Zambia and Malawi, while the Tuta went north to Nyamwezi. The Gwangara moved to the east of Lake Nyasa but collided with the Nguni Maseko led by Maputo, eventually driving them south of the Ruvuma River. The Ndendeule fled to the Kilombero valley and in the 1860s established the Mbunga kingdom. The Nguni invasions in eastern and central Africa destroyed many villages and killed thousands, causing famines and the displacement of populations.
Sebetwane increased the Kololo by entering into marriage alliances
and by assimilating the Lozi into the Kololo culture without discrimination.
After Sebetwane died in 1851, his successor Sekeletu, suffering
from leprosy and fearing witchcraft, reversed the liberal Kololo
policy and suspected the Lozi. When he died in 1864, he was succeeded
by Mbololu; but the Lozi commander Njakwa led a rebellion, supported
by Lozi prince Sipopa, that killed the Kololo. Sipopa then ruled
the Lozi homeland until 1876. David Livingstone had visited the
Kololos in 1851, and he used them as porters going down the Zambezi.
A few settled among the Manganja; these Kololos opposed the slave
trade and, using firearms given them by Livingstone, they were
able to deter the Yao, Portuguese, Arabs, and Nguni; thus they
were welcomed by the Manganja.
In November 1837 Voortrekker Piet Retief asked Dingane for fertile land and was promised it if he could retrieve stolen cattle, horses, and guns from Tlokwa chief Sekonyela. Retief met Sekonyela in the garden of Wesleyan missionary James Allison and put the chief in handcuffs until the Tokla delivered the goods. Retief turned the seven hundred cattle over to the Zulu king at Mgungundlovu but not the fifty horses and guns. When Retief and seventy Boers came for their land in February 1838 and entered the enclosure unarmed, Dingane treacherously had all of them slaughtered. He respected the missionaries to avoid antagonizing the English. Eleven days later near Bloukrans River the Zulus massacred 281 European men, women, and children along with more than 200 native servants, taking some 35,000 cattle and sheep.
After these long-remembered massacres, the missionaries left Zululand. John Cane led an African force from Port Natal that destroyed Zulu villages; but when traders led a similar force across the Thukela (Tugela) River, they were annihilated by a Zulu regiment commanded by Dingane's half-brother Mpande. These Zulus then destroyed Port Natal as the remaining Europeans took refuge on a ship. In December 1838 a stronger Boer force in Zululand formed a laager and fighting 10,000 Zulu with firearms killed about 3,000 in the battle at Blood River, while only three Boers were wounded. Dingane abandoned and burned Mgungundlovu. Voortrekkers were ambushed near the Black Mfolozi but managed to kill about a thousand Zulu while only losing five men. Dingane then made peace with the Boers, promising to move up the coast and stay north of the Thukela.
Shaka's brother Mpande stayed in Natal, and about 17,000 Zulus came over to him, "breaking the rope" to Dingane. Mpande went before the Boers' council and requested land south of the Thukela. In December 1839 the British withdrew from Natal. Boer commando Andries Pretorius executed two Zulu envoys by firing squad, after Mpande testified they were involved in the murder of Retief's party. After trying to capture Dingane, Pretorius took about 36,000 Zulu cattle back to Natal. Dingane put to death his best general Ndlela for having persuaded him to let Mpande live years before. With Boer support in the Zulu civil war, Mpande defeated Dingane at Magongo in February 1840. Dingane fled to Sobhuza but was put to death. Sobhuza also died that year and was succeeded by his son Mswazi, who developed the Swazi kingdom by adopting Zulu military methods and Sotho democratic influences. Pretorius proclaimed Mpande king of the Zulus and vassal of his Natal republic.
Zulu king Mpande maintained good relations with the Boers and the British for nearly a third of a century. He made a treaty with British commissioner Henry Cloete in 1843, making the Thukela and Buffalo rivers the border between Zululand and Natal. Mpande had many wives who gave him 23 sons and more than thirty daughters. His council met annually and approved his new laws that greatly reduced the severity of punishments. Zulu young people were allowed to be sexually active, and prostitution was unknown. Zulus believe that dreams are messages from their ancestors and reveal the truth. His sons divided into two factions as Mpande favored Mbuyazi; but Cetshwayo led about 20,000 Usuthu warriors, who defeated Mbuyazi's 7,000 Isigqoza in a battle that killed thousands of men, women, and children in 1856. Cetshwayo remained loyal to his father but made sure he had no other heir. After Mpande died, Cetshwayo was crowned king by Shepstone in 1873. His friend John Dunn was made a chief and eventually ruled about 10,000 Zulus, naming 49 wives in his will. Cetshwayo ruled 300,000 with an army of 30,000, reviving the military system. He collected over 100,000 cattle in his royal kraal at Ulundi; but a lung disease spread, causing an epidemic that destroyed about half of the Zulu cattle by 1875. Novelist Anthony Trollope visited South Africa in 1877 and published a sympathetic account of the natives the next year, prophesying, "I have no fears myself that Natal will be overrun by hostile Zulus;-but much fear that Zululand should be overrun by hostile Britons."5 The Zulu concept ubuntu means wholeness and implies that compassion, reciprocity, dignity, harmony, and humanity are needed for community.
Named for the sound of cutting hair, Sotho (Basuto) chief Moshweshwe did not smoke nor drink, though he had more than thirty wives. He was taught by Motlomi, who emphasized impartial justice and peace instead of war, warning him against relying on witchdoctors. In 1822 Moshweshwe made peace with Ngwane chief Matiwane by giving him cattle, and he cultivated Shaka's friendship with gifts. When Shaka learned that the gifts were being hindered by the Ngwane, he attacked them. A siege by Ma Nthatisi's Tlokwa caused Moshweshwe to flee and negotiate with Matiwane. The Sotho found a secure home on top of a steep mountain called Thaba Bosiu. In 1825 the Ngwane defeated the Hlubi and killed Mpangazita, causing some to join Sotho chief Moshweshwe. After the Zulu ravaged Ngwane cattle in 1827, Matiwane attacked the Sotho the next year. The Ngwane were forced to retreat and were defeated by the Cape corps. Moshweshwe made peace with the Tlokwa and defeated the marauding Ndebele in 1831. Then Moshweshwe sent the cattle back to the Ndebele with the message, "Our master assumes you must have been hungry to have attacked his people. He sends you these cattle so that you may eat and go in peace."6 In 1832 Adam Krotz, a Griqua Christian, visited Moshweshwe at Thaba Bosiu and told him about missionaries. French missionaries, deterred by Mzilikazi's violence, were drawn to Thaba Bosiu the next year and soon established missions at Morija, Beersheba, and Mekuatling. During the turmoil of the next decade the peaceful Sotho increased to 40,000.
Moshweshwe's Sotho territory between the Orange and Caledon rivers was defined in a treaty he made with Cape governor Napier in 1843. Two years later Cape governor Peregrine Maitland persuaded Moshweshwe and Griqua leader Adam Kok III to let the Boers pay rent for using their land. In 1847 Governor Harry Smith informed the Griqua that rent from the tenant farmers would go to the colony; but Moshweshwe was able to negotiate British protection against trekkers' claims to his land. Yet the next year Smith used Major Warden to annex Sotho land. The Sotho routed a Mfengu force commanded by Englishman Bailie and in 1851 defeated Warden's army at Viervoet. Ma Nthatisi's son Sekonyela had become chief of the Tlokwa, and their numbers increased; using firearms supplied by the British, Sekonyela attacked the Sotho capital at Thaba Bosiu in 1852. In December of that year Governor Cathcart demanded 10,000 cattle and a thousand horses in three days. Moshweshwe sent the British 3,500 cattle and begged for peace. Because of raids by the Tlokwa and Korana, Moshweshwe attacked them in 1853. Sekonyela went to live in exile, but his brother Mota and most of the Tlokwa agreed to live under Sotho sovereignty.
After creating the Orange Free State, the Boers clashed with their Sotho neighbors, and war broke out in 1858. Having modernized the military with guns and horses, 10,000 mounted Sothos were able to defend the mountain fortress at Thaba Bosiu, and Governor Grey arbitrated a treaty between the Sotho and South African president Boshoff. Unable to stop cattle raids against both sides, in 1866 Boers led by President J. H. Brand destroyed the crops until the starving Sotho ceded most of their fertile land to the Orange Free State. However, the Sotho did not abandon their territory, and the Boers could not take Thaba Bosiu. Moshweshwe had appealed to the British in 1861 and again in 1865. Finally in 1868 Cape governor Wodehouse took it upon himself to annex Basutoland (Lesotho) from the two exhausted sides, letting the Orange Free State retain most of the conquered territory. Moshweshwe died at the age of 84 in March 1870, the month Brand ratified the agreement.
The British government began publishing the Cape Gazette in 1800. The next year a contract system for farm labor was introduced. In 1802 Britain and France ratified the Amiens treaty that gave the Cape settlement back to the Batavian Republic. Jacob de Mist and the new governor Jan Willem Janssens arrived to take over at the end of the year, but the British general Dundas did not leave until March 4, 1803. General Janssens ended the third frontier war by granting Khoikhoi leaders their own lands. In the peace agreement neither side had to return stolen livestock; the trekboers resented this, because they believed they had lost 50,000 cattle, 50,000 sheep, and 1,000 horses. More than a third of the farms in Swellendam and Graaff-Reinet had been abandoned. After the Napoleonic Wars broke out in 1805, the British moved to regain the Cape colony. When a British force of 4,000 men arrived in January 1806, Janssens and a thousand men fled to the mountains. Major General David Baird offered a liberal capitulation, and on March 6, 1807 the Batavian troops were deported in British ships to Holland. After Britain banned the slave trade in 1807, Cape Town's exports went up from 180,000 rixdollars that year to 1,320,000 in 1815. In the ten years after the end of the slave trade the number of slaves in the Cape colony only went up from 30,000 to 32,046; by then they were no longer a majority of the Cape Town population.
The first British governor, Lord Caledon, appointed Col. Richard Collins to report on the colonists' concerns regarding the Khoisans and Xhosa. In 1809 the so-called "Magna Carta of the Hottentots" was proclaimed that required Khoisan to register and carry a pass or risk being arrested as vagabonds. The fear of a French invasion was greatly reduced after the British took over the islands of Mauritius and Réunion in 1810. John Craddock became governor the next year, and in 1812 he enacted a law whereby Khoisan children of employed parents should be apprenticed at age eight for ten years. Dr. Van der Kemp had married a Khoikhoi and adopted Xhosa ways. He and his assistant James Read of the London Missionary Society (LMS) complained that this was a way of enslaving the Khoisan. Their charges of cruelty and murder were investigated by judges in what was called the "black circuit." Nearly a hundred families were involved, and more than a thousand witnesses were summoned; several were found guilty of violence. The Cape Town Free School for the poor was founded in 1813 and began teaching more than two hundred students of all races and both sexes.
In the Zuurveld the Xhosa stole cattle and murdered five Khoisan herders in December 1809. As the Xhosa moved west, the Boers abandoned their farms and moved back toward Graaff-Reinet. In 1810 Ndlambe kept demanding cattle from his people, and the Xhosa raiding continued. The next year Governor Craddock sent Col. John Graham with troops to be joined by the commandos of landdrost Andries Stockenstrom, who tried to negotiate with the Xhosa and was killed along with thirteen Boers. On the first day of 1812 Graham ordered 500 men to enter the woods and kill any Kaffir they found in order to show their superiority. His forces and the farmers killed Xhosa men and women, capturing 2,500 cattle. Chungwa was killed resisting, but Ndlambe and the Xhosa escaped across the Fish River. Governor Craddock promulgated the quitrent system that went into effect in August 1813 and made land-owning hereditary, though the Boers preferred the old system with lower rent. Taxes were raised on most towns to pay for the defense of the eastern frontier. After his brother was killed, Johannes Bezuidenhout led a Boer rebellion against British rule in 1815. They were defeated at Slagter's Nek, and he was killed; many were put on trial, and five were hanged.
In 1817 Cape Town governor Charles Somerset visited the east and asked chief Ngqika (Gaika) to stop the Xhosa stealing, but by the end of the year a force was sent to make Ndlambe comply. They captured 2,060 cattle; though only 603 were identified by their owners, the others were kept as compensation for other losses. The next year a few soldiers were murdered in isolated attacks.
Nxele (Makanna) was a Xhosa who had grown up on a Boer farm and learned Dutch. He returned to his people and became an inyanga (diviner). He disagreed with missionaries and believed that white people had been banished to Africa for having killed Jesus and that Mdalidiphu, God of the black people, would drive them into the sea. Another diviner named Ntsikana had a more peaceful vision of submitting to the will of God, but he could not persuade Ndlambe, who followed Nxele. However, Ngqika sponsored Ntsikana. After Ndlambe and Nxele slaughtered hundreds of Ngqika's men at Amalinde, Ntsikana told Governor Somerset that he had been attacked for trying to stop cattle stealing. Boers volunteered, and retreating Ndlambe abandoned 23,000 cattle to the pursuing commandos and Ngqika, who was reinstated and given 9,000 cattle. Nxele urged the Xhosa to unite and led about 6,000 men in an attack on Grahamstown in 1819, but the bullets did not melt like water as he had predicted. Col. Willshire commanded a force; using 270 muskets, the British had only three men die, while they killed about a thousand spear-carrying warriors. Nxele surrendered the next day and was sent to Robben Island, but he drowned while trying to escape. Ndlambe eluded capture, but he had lost his power and died a few years later. Ngqika now was the main chief over the Xhosa west of the Kei River, and he promised to keep them out of the neutral territory and "ceded" 10,000 square kilometers of good pastureland to Governor Somerset. The Xhosa would remember the British as those who came to help but killed instead.
In 1819 the government in England financed with 50,000 pounds a program to move a thousand unemployed families to the Cape. Land grants were given to those who could afford to hire ten people; but the Zuurveld, named "sour country" by the Boers, was difficult to farm, and in 1823 farmers' petitions protested their miserable conditions. By reducing customs duties on wines, exports to England made this the Cape's most profitable business until 1825 when the duties were increased. In 1827 the British established a legal system in the Cape colony with resident magistrates and trials by jury, though slaves and Khoisan usually found their participation to be only as defendants in criminal cases. Well into the 1830s theft, cattle-killing, arson, rape, incest, and burglary were still capital crimes. A newspaper was suppressed in 1827, but two years later publishing was allowed without the governor and council's approval; security was required in case of libel until 1859. Missionary John Philip persuaded Cape authorities in 1828 to enact Ordinance 50 guaranteeing equal rights for all "Hottentots and other free persons of colour." This abolished the Pass laws and allowed the Khoisan to own land; it also prohibited employers from making contracts with servants for more than a year or from making children apprentices without their parents' consent, causing resentment among white farmers who feared losing control over their servants and workers. In 1829 the Cape government expelled Ngqika's successor Maqoma, the brother of Sandile, and gave the fertile Kat River valley to Khoikhoi and the mixed-race Barends called "bastards."
In 1834 the British government voided a vagrancy law aimed at Africans, and in December of that year the British decreed the emancipation of all the slaves in their colonies, including 39,000 in Cape Town, though the slaves would have to work for their former owners for four more years. The Xhosa invaded the colony to recover lost land in 1834. Governor Benjamin D'Urban ordered villages destroyed and crops burned; he and missionaries persuaded 16,000 Mfengu to move to the eastern frontier of the Cape colony. The British government ordered D'Urban to return the land he annexed. Named beggars because of their plight, the Mfengu worked for white farmers to learn skills and after a few years were selling grain, tobacco, cattle, milk, and firewood. They fought for the Cape colony in three frontier wars.
Unwilling to pay taxes to British authorities, about 15,000 Boers left their homes between 1835 and 1841 to trek into Zulu country. With guns the Voortrekkers were able to fight off about 5,000 Ndebele at Vegkop in October 1836. Most of their livestock were taken, but Rolong chief Moroka helped Potgieter's people to survive. The next January the wealthy Gert Maritz joined Potgieter, and with the help of Griqua, Kora, Rolong, and Tlokwa they captured the Ndebele stronghold at Mosega, killing 430 and regaining 7,000 cattle. In November 1837 commandos led by Potgieter and Piet Uys defeated the Ndebele again, forcing Mzilikazi to cross the Limpopo. After the two massacres of Voortrekkers by Zulus in February 1838, trekkers got revenge in December when they were attacked at the Ncome River, which was renamed Blood River. Shooting from inside their laager (circle of wagons), they killed some 3,000 Zulus while only three Boers were wounded.
That month, in response to the Republic of Natalia proclaimed by the Boers with Pretorius as president, British governor George Napier sent a force to occupy Port Natal. Sotho chief Moshweshwe did not object to the trekkers occupying some of the grazing land. After the Zulus destroyed the trading post of Port Natal, the Voortrekkers built a new capital they called Pietermaritzburg. Voortrekker commandos captured Zulu children and made them "apprentices" until the age of 25 for males and 21 for females. After the Volksraad (Council) decided to remove Africans from Natal, Napier sent a force to reoccupy Port Natal. In May 1842 the British forces and Voortrekkers clashed at Congella, and in October Jan Mocke proclaimed a republic by the Orange River. Reinforcements led by Col. Josias Cloete got the Volksraad at Pietermaritzburg to submit. T. C. Smith was put in command at Fort Napier, which was built to control Pietermaritzburg.
In 1835 Col. Henry Smith crossed the Kei River and offered Gcaleka chief Hintsa safe passage for talks; but Hintsa was arrested and shot dead when he tried to escape. After Governor D'Urban claimed the short-lived province of Queen Adelaide, the Xhosa chiefs made peace. Commissioner-General Andries Stockenstrom (junior) proposed a system of treaties with the Xhosa to settle cattle-stealing disputes in the Cape colony, while he criticized the commando raids of suspected thieves' homesteads as having caused the sixth frontier war. The British appointed Stockenstrom Lieutenant-Governor for the Eastern Districts in 1836, and his treaty system reduced conflict until the drought of 1842.
Missionary John Philip hoped that the Griqua in the north would help convert other Africans to Christianity. In 1842 British governor George Napier warned those who might invade, molest, or injure Africans, and a judge interpreted the Cape of Good Hope Punishment Act as authorizing the British government to protect the Griqua lands. In 1843 Napier made a treaty with Adam Kok III and Sotho chief Moshweshwe to maintain order with British courts. The next year Lt. General Peregrine Maitland replaced Napier as clashes between Voortrekkers and the Griqua escalated. After Tsili was arrested for stealing an axe, Xhosa chief Tola had him liberated by hacking off the hand of a fellow prisoner, who died. In reaction Col. John Hare sent out a punitive expedition. Chief Sandile refused to surrender Tola, and the "War of the Axe" erupted in which colonial cavalry killed 500 Ndlambe soldiers. By 1846 the Xhosa had 7,000 armed men; but because of the famine they wanted to make peace. They would not fight, but they also refused to leave the region. Governor Henry Pottinger stopped war-time rations, because the 400 men he ordered into military duty from the Kat River Settlement did not report. Yet all but about a hundred of the able-bodied men were already on military duty.
Harry Smith replaced the incompetent Pottinger as governor later in 1847. Increasing pressures for more grazing land were a result of the proliferation of sheep and the wool industry that by 1851 accounted for 59% of all Cape export revenue. To drive the Xhosa out, Smith gave annexation as an excuse to impose martial law; fines were imposed on the Xhosa for petty offenses. Ngqika chief Sandile refused to obey a summons to Governor Smith and attacked a colonial patrol, causing the eighth frontier war to break out on Christmas Day in 1850. Some ranchers were motivated to side with the Xhosa against the British government. The rebellion led by Smith's former interpreter Hermanus Matroos was suppressed, and their lands were given to Europeans, who quickly bought up the best land. Smith's failed attempt to annex Sotho land caused the British government to send a commission to assess his aggressive policies, and he was replaced by George Cathcart. Amid an epidemic of lung disease in the cattle, in 1856 a girl named Nongqawuse persuaded Xhosa chief Sarhili that the ancestors directed them to slaughter all the cattle, destroy their grain, and stop cultivation to build new facilities, expecting miracles. Some resisted and were blamed for the failure, resulting in a civil war that lasted a year until Sarhili renounced the devastating policy.
When the British tried to import convict labor into Cape Town in 1849, protests promoted by the South African Commercial Advertiser persuaded Governor Harry Smith to block their even leaving the boat, causing the British Parliament to change its policy. Editor John Fairbairn and Andries Stockenstrom proposed a constitution; a committee drafted one in 1851, and by 1854 representative government was achieved with voting rights for adult males of all races who had property worth at least 25 pounds. This liberal policy was in contrast to the color discrimination in the Orange Free State and Natal. Xhosa Tiyo Soga was educated in Scotland, became a missionary, married a Scot, and translated the Gospels and Bunyan's Pilgrim's Progress into Xhosa before he died in 1871.
In Natal neither the local government nor the British would expend funds to help the Africans get education, which was left to the missionaries. Theophilus Shepstone grew up in the Cape colony and was fluent in Xhosa. He served as Diplomatic Agent in Natal from 1845 to 1853 and then as Secretary for Native Affairs until 1875. He based administration on the tribal chiefs he recognized. In 1847 the British made Natal their colony and established the Locations Commission that put nearly a hundred thousand Africans under the jurisdiction of Shepstone. After 1849 every Zulu chief had to pay in cash or cattle an annual tax of seven shillings for each hut. Shepstone tried to use some native laws. In 1850 he let chieftain Matyana off with a fine of 500 cattle after he killed three relatives; but in November Shepstone instituted capital punishment in murder cases. After Matyana had a witch doctor beaten to death in 1858, a skirmish erupted, wounding Shepstone; Matyana escaped and fled. In 1856 Natal gained representative government, but most Africans were under their chiefs and could not vote.
An economic depression in the British Isles between 1847 and 1851 stimulated massive emigration, and about 5,000 came to Natal lured by twenty acres of land for ten pounds in a scheme designed by the British government and land speculator Joseph Byrne. However, the best land was already occupied by Afrikaners (Boers) or owned by speculators. Byrne went bankrupt in 1850, and most of the immigrants ended up in the towns of Pietermaritzburg or Durban. Experiments in growing arrowroot, coffee, cotton, indigo, tobacco, and sugar resulted in only sugar becoming a commercial success along the coast. Wool was the major product in the interior. Wool exports went from 20,000 pounds in 1832 to 25,000,000 in 1862, when they were more than 80% of the colony's exports. John W. Colenso became Natal's first Anglican bishop in 1853, and he translated the New Testament and some of the Old Testament into Zulu. Because of his efforts to promote Zulu rights and understand their religion, he was accused of heresy by Archbishop Robert Gray; but his sentence of deprivation was voided by the Privy Council in 1864. Europeans, upset that Natal Kaffirs (Africans) were avoiding work on their farms, began importing indentured laborers from India in 1860. These immigrants were indentured for five years, usually to sugar planters, and after ten years they received free passage back to India. The governor could grant them land instead, and most Indians stayed in Natal. About 6,000 came from Madras and 300 from Calcutta. By 1870 about 18,000 Europeans lived in Natal among a quarter million Africans; the Boer republics had about 45,000 whites; and the Cape colony had 200,000 Europeans.
In 1848 Cape governor Harry Smith used troops to annex the territory between the Orange and Vaal rivers, forcing Andries Pretorius to lead his people across the Vaal. Smith ordered Major Henry Warden to draw the boundaries without disturbing any white landowners, and the "Warden line" reduced the territory Napier had recognized as Sotho's. When Warden attacked Taung chief Moletsane's villages on Viervoet mountain in 1851, Moshweshwe helped defeat Warden. In February 1852 British commissioners by the Sand River Convention guaranteed the Boers north of the Vaal self-government without interference in alliance with Africans. Two years later the Bloemfontein Convention established a Boer republic called the Orange Free State (OFS). Their constitution made all white people there for six months citizens and gave the vote to male citizens registered for the military. Josias Hoffman became the first president of the Orange Free State, but in 1855 for conciliating the British and giving the Sotho gunpowder he was forced to resign by guns after impeachment failed. The new president, Jacobus Boshof, accepted the Warden line.
Ivory hunters and slave raiders caused troubles in Soutpansberg of the northern Transvaal. After the elephants were killed there, they taught Africans to shoot so that they could bring back ivory from areas with malaria. Hermanus Potgieter captured so many Ndebele children to be "apprentices" that chief Mankopane and Mokopane led an attack that killed him and several Boers in 1854. Five hundred Boer commandos tracked these Ndebele to caves, where seven hundred surrendered; but at least a thousand Ndebele were killed escaping or died in the caves during the 25-day siege. Marthinus Pretorius of Potchefstroom, who led this expedition, in 1856 accepted a constitution, as did the Jouberts in Lydenburg; but Stephanus Schoeman of Soutpansberg did not join this South African Republic (SAR) until 1860, when he became commandant-general. The Transvaal constitution specifically denied equality to non-whites. In 1859 mistreated Africans around Schoemansdal rebelled, and in the 1860s the Venda defended themselves with firearms they had learned to use shooting elephants. When Venda chief Makhado led an uprising in 1867, commandant-general Paul Kruger had to withdraw from Schoemansdal with the white inhabitants. The Venda and Sotho were both divided, and Soutpansberg was ravaged by Shoshangane's successor Mzila and by Mswazi.
When Marthinus Pretorius tried to take over the Orange Free State as the heir of his father Andries Pretorius in 1857, a confrontation was resolved by agreeing to mutual autonomy. British commissioner George Grey tried to mediate the conflict with the Sotho; but in 1859 Grey was recalled to England for promoting British annexation of the Orange Free State. This caused Boshof, who also favored this, to resign. In 1861 South African Republic president Marthinus Pretorius signed the Treaty of Waaihoek, which redefined the border between Zululand and the Transvaal. The unionists elected Pretorius president of the OFS, and he had to resign his office in the SAR. In 1863 Pretorius went back to the Transvaal, where he served as president of the South African Republic until 1871. Parliamentarian Jan Hendrik Brand was elected president of the Orange Free State in 1864 and held that position until 1888. The South African Republic followed the policies of the Natal Republic in not allowing Africans to have firearms, ammunition, or horses and requiring a pass signed by an employer or an official. Africans had to pay taxes and were pushed off fertile land by white farmers. Adam Kok III sold his rights in the Orange Free State and led his people out to found East Griqualand. Africans could be conscripted to work for a year, and the laws were enforced by the military. Mistreated African servants could appeal to the landdrost but risked being punished for a "frivolous" complaint.
Diamonds were discovered in 1867, and by 1870 some 10,000 people were digging along the Vaal River. Natal Lt. Governor Robert Keate arbitrated that Griqualand West belonged to the Griqua, but in 1871 chief Nicolaas Waterboer gained protection as Griqualand West became a British colony. African labor was hired and by 1873 made up half of the 50,000 workers. They worked six months or a year for cash to buy guns, farm tools, or brides. An international recession in 1873 forced many to sell their diamond stocks to the wealthy. Hlubu chief Langalibalele had a record harvest that year and owned 15,000 cattle. Suspected for having 63 unregistered guns, he was attacked for not obeying a summons and was imprisoned on Robben Island. Other Hlubi prisoners were made indentured servants. Bishop Colenso defended the Hlubi chief and observed that the Hlubi were treated unjustly because of swartgevaar, an excessive fear of Africans by Europeans. Colonial secretary Kimberley, after whom the diamond town was named, believed that conflict over the diamond mines prevented the confederation of South Africa; but in 1874 he was replaced by Lord Carnavan, who began working for federation the next year.
1. Quoted in The History of West Africa, Volume 2, p.
2. Ibid., p. 402-3.
3. West African Countries and Peoples by James Africanus Horton, p. 24.
4. Quoted in Shaka's Children by Stephen Taylor, p. 32.
5. South Africa by Anthony Trollope, p. 228.
6. Quoted in The Zulu Aftermath by J. D. Omer-Cooper, p. 103.
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