About Nigeria

Written by Joesef Karim Category: Nigeria Last Updated: Thursday, 20 August 2015 08:49 Hits: 1636

Among the most important were the northeastern kingdom of Borno, the Hausa city-state/kingdoms of Katsina, Kano, Zaria, and Gobir in northern-central Nigeria, the Yoruba city-states/kingdoms of Ife, Oyo, and Ijebu in southwestern Nigeria, the southern kingdom of Benin, and the Igbo communities of eastern Nigeria. Extensive trading networks developed among these societies and northwards across the sahara.

Nigeria is an amalgam of ancient Kingdoms, Caliphates, Empires and City-states with a long history of organised societies. Its boundaries were drawn as a result of trade (from slavery to pepper or ivory) and overseas territorial ambitions of Western European powers in the 19 th century. The name Nigeria was adopted in 1898 to designate the British Protectorates on the River Nigeria.Its very name--after the great Niger River, the country's dominating physical feature--was suggested in the 1890s by British journalist Flora Shaw, who later became the wife of colonial governor Frederick Lugard.

The modern history of Nigeria--as a political state encompassing 250 to 400 ethnic groups of widely varied cultures and modes of political organization--dates from the completion of the British conquest in 1903 and the amalgamation of northern and southern Nigeria into the Colony and Protectorate of Nigeria in 1914. The history of the Nigerian people extends backward in time for some three millennia. Archaeological evidence, oral traditions, and written documentation establish the existence of dynamic societies and well-developed political systems whose history had an important influence on colonial rule and has continued to shape independent Nigeria.

Nigerian history is fragmented in the sense that it evolved from a variety of traditions, but many of the most outstanding features of modern society reflect the strong influence of the three regionally dominant ethnic groups--the Hausa in the north, the Yoruba in the west, and the Igbo in the east. Nigeria contains more historic cultures and empires than any other nation in Africa. They date back as far as the 5th century BC, when communities living around the southern slopes of the Jos plateau make wonderfully expressive terracotta figures - in a tradition known now as the Nok culture, from the Nigerian village where these sculptures are first unearthed. The Nok people are neolithic tribes who have recently acquired the iron technology spreading southwards through Africa.