Mali Empire

After the fall of the Kingdom of Ghana, the Mali Empire rose to dominate West Africa. Located on the Niger River to the west of Ghana in what is today Niger and Mali, the empire reached its peak in the 1350s.

The Mali Empire was founded by Mansa (King) Sundiata Keita and became renowned for the wealth of its rulers, especially Mansa Musa. He was the grandson of Sundiata’s half-brother, and led Mali at a time of great prosperity, during which trade tripled. During his rule, Mansa Musa doubled the land area of Mali; it became a larger kingdom than any in Europe at the time.

The cities of Mali became important trading centers for all of West Africa, as well as famous centers of wealth, culture and learning. Timbuktu, an important city in Mali, became one of the major cultural centers not only of Africa but of the entire world. Vast libraries and Islamic universities were built. These became meeting places of the finest poets, scholars and artists of Africa and the Middle East.

The Kingdom of Mali had a semi-democratic government with one of the world’s oldest known constitutions – The Kurukan Fuga.

Read more: http://atlantablackstar.com/2013/12/05/7-midieval-african-kingdoms/2/

http://www.blackpast.org/gah/mali-empire-ca-1200

http://africa.si.edu/exhibits/resources/mali/

The few written accounts about ancient Mali were recorded by Arab travelers and scholars. One of the most famous travelogues is Rihlah by the African-born Ibn Battuta (1304-1368/9), a great Arab traveler of the time. Rihlah describes life in Mali between 1352 and 1353/4 and records his travels to Anatolia (current-day Turkey), Crimea, east Africa, Persia (present-day Iran), India, Cylon, Sumatra, North Africa and perhaps China. Although other written accounts of the ancient West African empires exist, Ibn Battuta is one of the few who actually traveled to this area and wrote from personal experience.

http://africa.si.edu/exhibits/resources/mali/

http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/hd/mali/hd_mali.htm

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1 Comment

  1. Thank you for this post on the Mali Empire.
    I recently wrote about Kankan Musa, the Emperor of Mali, and the richest man on earth.
    http://afrolegends.com/2015/03/20/kankan-musa-the-richest-man-in-world-history/

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

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