Category: Africa

Prester John

  In the time of the crusades, Europeans were looking for any allies in their battles against the Muslims for the Holy Land.  Medieval writings often feature a fabulously wealthy Christian king in the East.  This was Prester John.  He was believed to be a member of the Nestorian Church, which was an independent Eastern […]

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Nana Asma’u

There is a lot of talk in the news about the education of girls.  In fact in recent history Malala Yousafzai was shot by the Taliban for daring to go to school and being female at the same time.  However, education for women was not always considered taboo in Islamic cultures.  Nana Asma’u is a […]

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The Tanganyika Laughter Epidemic

Sometimes laughter isn’t the best medicine. We’ve all been there- laughing until our sides hurt. Thinking if we laughed anymore we might never stop. Now imagine a laughing epidemic. The laughter epidemic is rumored to have begun on January 30, 1962, at a mission-run boarding school for girls in Kashasha, on the western coast of […]

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The Queen of Sheba

The Queen of Sheba’s visit to Solomon is one of the most famous diplomatic visits in the Bible, but we know very little about this powerful monarch.  Her visit appears in religious texts sacred to Jews, Christians and Muslims, however, her name was never mentioned.  We are not exactly sure where “Sheba” even is.  She […]

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Nzinga of Ndongo and Matamba- Always have a Chair for the Queen

The Portuguese had begun colonizing Africa after their rounding of the Cape of Good Hope in 1488.  The English and the French had begun exploring northeast Africa, so the Portuguese concentrated on the south, what is now Congo and Angola.  Their chief aim was to provide slaves for their colony of Brazil in South America. […]

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