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Showcasing the beauty of Africans and Africa's rich history and culture (+ other stuff)

dynamicafrica:

NEW MUSIC: Awilo Longomba - Bundelele.

The man who brought us one of the continent’s most-loved Soukous songs is back! Whilst the single was released a few months earlier, Longomba’s finally dropped the offiicial music video for his track Bundelele (meaning ‘dance’).

Staying true to the song’s title, the rythmic and pulsating video celebrates various forms of dance and features choreography from the highly talented Nigerian dancer and member of CEO dancers Ezinne Asinugo.

If Asinugo looks familiar, that’s because you may have seen her in this video as well as the most recent music video from Fuse ODG featuring Sea Paul.

— 19 minutes ago with 50 notes
#Congo! 

magictransistor:

Painted signboards from barber shops and hair-dressers in Ghana, Mali, Benin, Burkina Faso, Cote d’Ivoire and Togo.

— 41 minutes ago with 384 notes

beautiesofafrique:

Happy Independence day to Benin

Celebrating 54 years of Independence from France

01/08/1960 (1st August 1960)

— 42 minutes ago with 92 notes
pahlmy asked: Do you know something about history/culture etc. of Togo and Benin? I am mixed but my parents are divorced I live with my mom who only knows small bits of the culture of my ancestors and my dad never really talked about it (he doesn't really talk much in general). So everything I know is from the internet or books which are mostly written by white ppl.. I would be very grateful if you do happen to know some things about those countries and I totally understand if you don't want to answer this💞


Answer:

pahlmy

I made a post about the Yoruba ethnic group of nigeria, benin and togo

http://beautiesofafrique.tumblr.com/post/90495107005/african-ethnic-group-of-the-week-yoruba-nigeria

BENIN

If you would like to know a little it more about the Kingdom of Benin I recommend you watch this documentary

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QW_kaUuUg8Y

Others:

http://www.gamji.com/article4000/NEWS4738.htm

http://www.edofolks.com/html/pub130.htm

http://video.nationalgeographic.com/video/benin_birthofvoodoo (only a short clip…you can buy the full documentary online just search Birth of Voodoo)

Recommended hisotry books

Empires at War

The Ewe People. A Study of the Ewe People in German Togo

The Partition of Africa: And European Imperialism 

Art of Benin

The Ancient World: Benin 

Once Upon a Kingdom: Myth, Hegemony, and Identity (I’d probably get this one first)

The Africans Who Wrote the Bible

Peoples of Africa: Togo-Zimbabwe, Volume 10

The Boundary Politics of Independent Africa

Folklores

Why Goats Smell Bad and Other Stories from Benin

Why Monkeys Live in Trees and Other Stories from Benin

Dawn to Dusk: Folktales from Benin

Okhogiso: A Collection of Edo Folktales from Benin, Nigeria

The Coming of Night Big Book: A Yoruba Creation Myth from West Africa

— 46 minutes ago
#pahlmy 

theijeoma:

Blessing Okagbare

Copyright: Getty images. 

— 2 hours ago with 30 notes
theodesofthecurious:

beautiesofafrique:

Nyimi Kok Mabiintsh III King of Kuba (D.R. Congo)

bow down

theodesofthecurious:

beautiesofafrique:

Nyimi Kok Mabiintsh III King of Kuba (D.R. Congo)

bow down

— 2 hours ago with 116 notes

In Ghana, the display of gold at the Ashanti king’s jubilee in 1995 was unsurpassed in splendor. This Adioukrou Queen Mother, attending the jubilee, indicates her status by wearing gold turtle & crocodile talismans in her hair. Magnificently bedecked in gold jewelry & wearing gold dust makeup, she exhibits her husband’s substantial authority & worth.
Source

In Ghana, the display of gold at the Ashanti king’s jubilee in 1995 was unsurpassed in splendor. This Adioukrou Queen Mother, attending the jubilee, indicates her status by wearing gold turtle & crocodile talismans in her hair. Magnificently bedecked in gold jewelry & wearing gold dust makeup, she exhibits her husband’s substantial authority & worth.

Source

(Source: beautiesofafrique)

— 2 hours ago with 78 notes

beautiesofafrique:

Once a year thousands of Zulu people make the long journey to the King of the Zulu nation’s royal residence at KwaNyokeni Palace. Here, every September month, young Zulu maidens will take part in the cultural festival, the Royal Reed Dance festival - or Umkhosi woMhlanga in the Zulu language.

Steeped in the history of the rise of the Zulu kingdom the Reed Dance festival has been tirelessly celebrated by countless generations, and attracts thousands of visitors from throughout the country and from across the world.

It is a great honour for the young women to be invited to take part in the Reed Dance ceremony, and its also a source of great dignity and pride for their families and communities. According to Zulu tradition, only virgins are permitted to take part in the festival to ensure that they are ritually ‘pure’.

The Reed Dance festival is a solemn occasion for the young women, but also an opportunity to show off their singing, dancing and bead-work, the fruits of many months of excitement and preparation.

The Reed Festival takes its name from the riverbed reeds, which are the central focus of this four-day event. As the ceremony begins the young women prepare to form a procession led by the chief princess. One of the daughters of the Zulu King is also the leader of the group of maidens as they go through this important rite of passage.

The reed-sticks are carried in a procession by the young maidens who are invited to the King’s palace, with the rest of the Zulu nation helping them to celebrate their preparation for womanhood.

Each maiden carries a reed which has been cut by the riverbed and it symbolizes the power that is vested in nature. The reeds reflect a deep  connection with origin of the Zulu people, where, tradition tells us, the original ancestor emerged from a reed bed.

 And still, today an expectant hush falls on the crowd as the chief princess is the first to choose a reed. Shouts of joy and celebration greet her as the reed remains intact, and, with bated breath, each of the young women takes it in turn to choose a reed.

Accompanied by  singing and dancing, the stately procession winds its way up the hill to the palace entrance where the king awaits, flanked by his royal regiment.

As leader of the group of young women, the chief princess kneels down before the king and presents him with a reed to mark the occasion, before joining the young women in a dance of tribute to the king.

  Source

— 2 hours ago with 110 notes

beautiesofafrique:

The Queen of Sheba (Queen Makeda) 

The Queen of Sheba - an mysterious woman of power - is immortalised in the world’s great religious works, among them the Hebrew Bible and the Muslim Koran. She also appears in Turkish and Persian painting, in Kabbalistic treatises, and in medieval Christian mystical works, where she is viewed as the embodiment of Divine Wisdom and a foreteller of the cult of the Holy Cross. In Africa and Arabia her tale is still told to this day and, indeed, her tale has been told and retold in many lands for nearly 3,000 years.

The Queen of Sheba was a monarch of the ancient kingdom of Sheba and is referred to in Yemenite and Ethiopian history, the Bible, the Qur’an, Yoruba customary tradition, and Josephus. 

The Queen of Sheba has been called a variety of names by different peoples in different times. To King Solomon of Israel she was the Queen of Sheba. In Islamic tradition she was called Bilkis, Bilqis, Balqis, Balquis, Bilkish or Bilqays by the Arabs, who say she came from the city of Sheba, also called Mareb, in Yemen or Arabia Felix. The Roman historian Josephus calls her Nicaule. The Luhya of Kenya call her Nakuti, while the Ethiopian people claim her as Makeda. She is said to have been born some time in the 10th century BC. One of the beliefs is that she loved a king named Hemant. Traditionally her lineage was part of the Ethiopian dynasty established in 1370 BC by Za Besi Angabo, which lasted 350 years; her grandfather and father were the last two rulers of this dynasty. According to the Kebra Negast, her mother was known as Queen Ismeni, and in 1005 BC, Makeda’s father appointed her as his successor from his deathbed. 

In the Hebrew Bible, a tradition of the progenitors of nations is preserved in Genesis 10. In Genesis 10:7 there is a reference to Sheba, the son of Raamah, the son of Cush, the son of Ham, son of Noah. In Genesis 10:26-29 there is a reference to another person named Sheba, listed along with Almodad, Sheleph, Hazarmaveth, Jerah, Hadoram, Uzal, Diklah, Obal, Abimael, Ophir, Havilah and Jobab as the descendants of Joktan, the son of Eber, the son of Shelah, the son of Arphaxad, the descendant of Shem, another son of Noah

In Ancient times Ethiopia was also known as Nubia, Kush, Aksum, Abyssinia and Sheba. One thousand years before Christ, Ethiopia was ruled by a line of virgin queens. The one whose story has survived into our time was known as Makeda, “the Queen of Sheba.” Her remarkable tradition was recorded in the Kebra Nagast, or the Book of the Glory of the Kings [of Ethiopia], has been held in the highest esteem and honour throughout the length and breadth of Abyssinia for a thousand years at least, and even to-day it is believed by every educated man in that country to contain the true history of the origin of the Solomonic line of kings in Ethiopia.

At this time, Ethiopia was second only to Egypt in power and fame. Hence, King Solomon was enthralled by Ethiopia’s beautiful people, rich history, deep spiritual tradition and wealth. He was especially interested in engaging in commerce with one of Queen Makeda’s subjects, an important merchant by the name of Tamrin. She gave the king 120 talents of gold, and of spices very great store and precious stones; there came no more abundance of spices as these which the Queen of Sheba gave to King Solomon.” (Kings 10:10)

"I am black but comely,

O ye daughters of Jerusalem,

As the tents of Kedar,

As the curtains of Solomon,

Look not upon me because I am black

Because the sun hath scorched me.”

(Song of Solomon)

Read more/ Sources: 1| 2| 3

— 2 hours ago with 292 notes

Traditional African attires

(<Sekai no MINZOKUISHO Zukan (世界の民族衣装図鑑)> Japanese Illusrators Drawing Many Different Kinds of Traditional Costumes.)

1. Gomesi : Ugandan Traditional Clothing &  Traditional Clothes of Maasai People in Tanzania

2.  Traditional Clothes of Afar People in Djibouti, Ethiopia and Eritrea & Traditional Clothes of Herero People in Namibia, Botswana and Angola

3. Royal Court Dress of Kuba Kingdom in Democratic Republic of the Congo & Mushanana : Rwandan Traditional Clothing

4. Milaya Lef : Egyptian Traditional Veil & Djellaba (جلابة) & Moroccan Traditional Clothing

5. Traditional Clothes of the Amazigh  (the indigenous people of North Africa) & Gandoura (قندورة)  &Traditional Clothes of Algeria and Morocco

6. Kente : Akan Traditional Clothing & Haik : Algerian Traditional Veil

 Sources 

 

 

(Source: beautiesofafrique)

— 2 hours ago with 201 notes

beautiesofafrique:

Houses of the Mangbetu ethnic group, DR Congo

— 2 hours ago with 10 notes
everything-naija:

atane:
Nigerian media can be absurd at times. What kind of ridiculous question is this? Chimamanda is an Igbo woman. That’s who she is. How can she be trying too hard to be Igbo? Is she eating too much yam? Yahweh take the wheel…

everything-naija:

atane:

Nigerian media can be absurd at times. What kind of ridiculous question is this? Chimamanda is an Igbo woman. That’s who she is. How can she be trying too hard to be Igbo? Is she eating too much yam? Yahweh take the wheel…

— 2 hours ago with 77 notes