African Cities You Didn’t Know Were Destroyed by European Imperialists.

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Loango

The Kingdom of Loango, also known as the Kingdom of Lwããgu, was a pre-colonial African state from the 15th to 19th century in the Republic of the Congo. Copper was one of Loango’s largest exports, along with cloth, until it was  “destroyed by European fortune hunters, pseudo-missionaries and other kinds of free-booters,” according to siliconafrica.com.

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Munhumutapa

Also called the Mutapa Empire, Munhumutapa was a Shona kingdom that was between the Zambezi and Limpopo rivers of southern Africa in Zimbabwe and Mozambique.

In 1571, Portuguese forces invaded the city and destroyed it. In 1629, Emperor Mavhura took over on behalf of Spain.

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Kilwa Kisiwani

Kilwa Kisiwani is a city on an island off the southern coast of Tanzania. In 1331, Moroccan explorer Ibn Battuta described the city of Kilwa as “one of the most beautiful and well-constructed cities in the world, the whole of it is elegantly built.”

In 1505, Portuguese forces burned down the Swahili cities of Kilwa and Mombasa.

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Kumasi

Kumasi was the capital of the Asante Kingdom from the 10th century to 20th century. It is now a city in the Ashanti Region, South Ghana, and is one of the largest metropolitan areas of Ghana. It is known as “The Garden City” because of its plethora of exotic plants.

Parts of the city were destroyed by British troops in the Third Anglo-Ashanti War of 1874. In 1926, the Ashanti tribe regained ceremonial control over Kumasi and full control in 1935.

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Benin City

Benin City is the capital of Edo State in southern Nigeria and is currently the center of Nigeria’s rubber industry.

In 1897, Benin City was destroyed by British forces under Admiral Harry Rawson. The city was ransacked and burnt down. The British stole bronze and brought it back to England to be displayed in the British Museum of London. In order to reclaim some of Africa’s plundered treasures, Nigeria was forced to purchase some of the 700 stolen pieces of bronze in 1972.

 

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