Although it provided some tough geographic obstacles, the location of the West African Kingdoms proved to be very beneficial to their society. These three features all made up the successful civilization of Western Africa before the arrival of the Europeans. The following paragraphs assist to portray just how significant this culture was. Unlike some parts of modern day Africa, during the 300’s and forthwith until their decline, most parts of the area were swimming in wealth. Cities including Ghana, Mali and Songhai were situated upon an area swarming with gold, salt and even iron specimens waiting to be retrieved.
Did you know that Mansa Musa was the wealthiest person in history? He became so rich due to cultural exchange, and Mali itself had an abundance of resources to trade with other countries. Mali became a sight for cultural exchange because of trade, technology, and culture. This grand empire was established in 1235 CE, and Mali’s great wealth came from gold and salt mines. While Mansa Musa was in Timbuktu, he converted people into the religion of Islam, and expanded the city.
This affected the Axum Empire in many ways. They (Axum people) had gained wealth because it was a great trade point and from it, it was introduced to religions, Christianity and Islam. Another empire is called the Kingdom of Ghana in Western Africa. They became one of the richest civilizations due to commerce. In document two, it states that the amount of wealth was visible because of what the pages were wearing.
Mali’s greatness was seeded in how fabulously wealthy it was. Mali’s great wealth came from its ideal location south of the Sahara and the gold-salt-trade. Mali traded gold for the salt, from North Africa. The Malians, and all humans, can’t live without salt, it is a necessary vitamin and crucial in preserving food. The salt came to Mali from Berbers and it was taxed during trade.
I will start by discussing the advantages that this pilgrimage brought into the Malian Kingdom. These advantages were the recognition of Mali in other countries which contributed to trade, the strengthening of Islam and the promotion of education. After that I will discuss about its disadvantages which are spending gold at the expense of Malians and also the impact that it brought to Egypt’s gold trade. To begin, with Mansa Musa’s pilgrimage is considered as one of the greatest in the medieval times. Rose E. Dunn (2004) has emphasized this view by stating that “[T] he hajj of Mansa Musa sum’s up Mali’s important place among the kingdoms of Africa and Asia in Ibn Battuta’s time” (p. 113).
The Kingdom of Mali was an African hub of wealth, trade and education for over 225 years. Mali is an Arab version of the Mandinka word that means, “Where the king dwells”, and was vitally important in spreading trade, education, religion and culture along the Niger River. The rise of Mali into an Empire occurred in the early 13th century, when Sundiata defeated his enemies and won control of the West African gold mines. In 1312 Mansa Musa became ruler of Mali. During his reign which was known as Mali’s, “Golden Age”, he introduced Islamic beliefs to many communities along the Niger and enhanced education after his historic pilgrimage to Mecca.
At this time the Malinke Empire was producing and transporting copper, salt and kola nuts along the Niger River and establishing itself as the world’s largest producer of gold. As these material goods disseminated so did the Mande language, technology and culture. After Sundjata’s death Mansa Musa came to power during the 14th century. Mansa embraced Islam and brought his religion to the empire. It was believed Islam would open up the international commercial world and it did.
This natural resource was found between the Ankobra and Votra rivers. Additionally, the colonizing countries took interest in Ghana’s slaves, during the 1500s this interest outweighed Ghana’s demand for gold. The Gold Coast’s rich supply in salt attracted many European because they lacked this imperative resource. The Portuguese colonized Ghana because Ghana provided an abundance of a valuable element. Ancient Ghana’s original name (The Gold Coast), intentionally inferred Ghana's prosperity in a valuable element.
From the seventh to fifteenth centuries, Africa rightfully claimed its name as the most powerful continent. Globetrotters from all over the world were captivated by Africa’s possession of rich resources such as gold and ivory. African leaders and emperors realized this attraction and the profit that could be assumed from “sharing” their secret resources. Considering this, they set up Sub-Saharan trading operations. According to Michael Gomez, these trading posts posed as “global crossroad[s] for various populations and cultures”.
Conclusion a. Sierra Leone is one of West Africa’s most seductive destinations nation because of its beautiful scenery, rich history, amazing delicacies, and a growing economy. b. Sierra Leone has a unique culture of people, economics, and land that makes it diverse and continuously progressing. c. I hope you have learned more about the culture and hopefully have the joy of visiting one day.