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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
The Kanem-Bornu kingdom (an actual amalgamation of one waning empire [Kanem] and one rising empire [Bornu]) may not be famous for it's art unlike many former Nigerian ancient Kingdoms/empires but this empire is noted for it's sophistication.

Despite my username I have much respect for the the Kanuris (the descendants of this great Kingdom) as they never fell to the Sokoto Caliphate founded and headed by Shehu Uthman Dan Fodio.

The Kanuris already knew Islam before the Fulanis ventured East with the Muslim faith in what is today refered to as Northern Nigeria (Arewa) so perhap this might have also been a deterrent for the advancing Fulanis where one of their main aims was to Islamisize Northern Nigeria/Niger Republic and as a consequence the rest of West Africa.

However the Kanuris resisted the growing Sokoto Caliphate and fought courageously to defend their sovereignty. As a result many of the leaders and rulers in North East Nigeria are not actually of Fulani descent as is the case in the North West.

Linguists have grouped the Kanuris under the Nilo-saharan group. They can be found in North Eastern Nigeria, South Western Niger, Northern Cameroon, Chad and all the way up to southern Libya - albeit they number a few here.
The Kanem Bornu Kingdom thus strecthed from North Eastern Nigeria and encopmassed all these nations where the Kanuris are found today, with Borno state serving as the head quarters.

We welcome all Kanuris from which ever country they may be from to also contribute to their great history :eek:kay:

Pictures and more info will come in subsequent posts:)
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
The Sahel region of the Sudan, that is the region immediately south of the Sahara desert in central and western Africa, saw four of the greatest African empires. The largest and longest lasting was Ghana, followed by Mali and its successor, Songhay. Near central Africa, however, arose another great empire called Kanem around 1200. Kanem was originally a confederation of black tribes, but by 1100, a group of tribes called the Kanuri settle in Kanem and in the thirteenth century the Kanuri began to conquer the surrounding areas.

They were led by one of the great figures of African history, Mai Dunama Dibbalemi (1221-1259), who was the first of the Kanuri to convert to Islam. Dibbalemi declared jihad, or "holy war," against surrounding chieftaincies and so precipitated one of the most dynamic periods of conquest in Africa.

At the height of their empire, the Kanuri controlled territory from Libya to Lake Chad to Hausaland. These were strategic areas: all the commercial traffic through north Africa had to pass through Kanuri territory. As a result of the military and commercial growth of Kanem, the Kanuri slowly changed from a nomadic to a sedentary people.

In the late 1300's, civil strife within Kanuri territory began to seriously weaken the empire so that by the early 1400's, Kanuri power shifted from Kanem to Bornu, a Kanuri kingdom south and west of Lake Chad. When Songhay fell, this new Kanuri empire of Bornu grew very rapidly. The Kanuri grew powerful enough to unite the kingdom of Bornu with Kanem during the reign of Idris Alawma (1575-1610). Idris Alawma was a fervent Muslim and set about building a Muslim state all the way west into Hausaland in northern Nigeria. This state would last for another two hundred years, but in 1846, it finally succumbed to the growing power of the Hausa states.

Richard Hooker

Link:http://www.wsu.edu:8080/~dee/CIVAFRCA/KANEM.HTM
 

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