Africa to the Early 19th Century Africa: The Rise and Fall of Great Civilizations custom essay
African continent, being the birthplace of homo sapience, nowadays is back warded in its development though there were great empires in its history. In this respect, the golden age of the development of great African civilizations may be considered 14-15th centuries when such empires as Songhay Empire, the Kingdom of the Kongo, and the Ethiopian Empire appeared. Basically the rise of the empires is closely related to the formation of a strong monarch power concentrated in one centre.
For instance, Sonni Ali concentrated power in his hands and made his empire an ‘heir’ ofMali. He controlled main cities and trade routs and brought great wealth to Songhai Empire. His follower, Mohammad, brought political reform and revitalization that provided the empire with strong socio-political, military and economic structure.
As for the Kingdom of the Kongo it initially originated from a little state of Mpemba Kasi whose ruler made alliance with a neighbouring state and in the result of this alliance the Kingdom of the Kongo was founded by the son and heir of this arrangement. In the result of expansion the territory of the kingdom enlarged and the power was centralised.
In this respect, the development of the Ethiopian Empire seems to be to a significant extent influenced from outside by Portuguese, on the one hand, and Muslims on the other hand.
At the same time, it should be pointed out that external influence, especially that of Euroepans played a crucial role in the fall of the three great African civilizations. Basically, Euroepans initially arrived as alliances and later colonized the territories where they were formally invited and welcome. In general, analysing their fall it is possible to distinguish two main reasons: the increase of internal tension resulting in civil wars, and external expansion, i.e. colonization.
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