Mali Gold Trade

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Ancient Mali was one of the greatest kingdoms in early Africa. It had not been considered much by others, but gold had given it the recognition and admiration it was entitled to. It grew into distinction for its gold and contact with other civilizations allowed for a reputation to blossom. Without the gold and gold trade, Mali might never have had the resources to rise into a magnificent and lasting empire. It developed its own unique culture, remained strong and fierce in times of turmoil, and had some of the strongest and most renowned leaders recognized in ancient Africa. The gold trade had been a crucial source for Mali’s advancement into a dynamic society. Therefore, the rise and development of Mali and its culture is a direct effect of…show more content…
There was a boy named Sundiata Keita, whose name means “hungering lion.” He had twelve siblings who could have been the heir to the Kangaba throne. Sumanguru, who was the ruler of bordering kingdom Kaniaga, attacked the heirs. He left only Sundiata alive. After time had passed, Sundiata became the headman to a village in Kangaba, and he was essentially a general opposing Sumanguru for power and dominance. After many battles in a long and bloody war, Sumanguru was defeated by Sundiata in 1235, at the Battle of Kirina. Sundiata could now become the ruler of his little kingdom without as many major opponents. He was not overly concerned with the size of his kingdom, which seemed adequate enough to him. His generals, however, thought otherwise and felt that the kingdom could be bigger. They ended up expanding the Kangaba kingdom’s boundaries into regions like the southern part of the Sahara and Wangara, both of which were significant conquers. His vanquishing of Sumanguru and ascending to the throne of Kangaba, also called Susu, is known today as the beginning of the glorious empire of Mali. Sundiata brought changes, such as making occupations inherited. For example, if a family were griots, or oral historians, then a child of that family would have to become a griot. Consequently, this created a dynasty of rulers, called mansas, which ensured that Sundiata’s family would hold the throne. This led to…show more content…
He conquered influential cities, built magnificent mosques, and caused Mali’s culture to reach its apex. Cultural aspects like architecture, religion, growth and expansion, and politics were thriving because of Mansa Musa and his usage of the gold trade. He brought back an Arab architect with him who designed and built many buildings for the mansa. His constructions included Magadou and Djinguereber, both magnificent buildings that are still located in modern Timbuktu . The religion of the area before Sundiata and the Mali Empire revolved around the worship of nature spirits, but the gold and salt trade brought in Muslim traders who spread Islam among the people. Mansa Musa was perhaps one of the most famous Muslims is Malian history. Mansa Musa, along with Sundiata, had expanded the borders of the empire into the surrounding land during his rule. Because of this, there were many diverse language and culture groups that came into Mali’s rule. Trade also introduced Arab and Islamic culture, along with the Arabic writing system. Expansion also brought major cities, like Gao and Timbuktu, that became well-known to the outside world. In fact, after Mansa Musa delivered the imperial gold to Mecca and Egypt, maps began to appear with the Mali Empire and Timbuktu labeled. Timbuktu can be considered to be the most famous and one of the most important cities culturally.

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