The Early Kingdoms of Africa. Kingdoms of Wealth and Power. Kingdom of Ghana: 700–1070 Kingdom of Mali: 1235–1490s Kingdom of Songhai: 1464-1591 Kingdom of Benin: 1180-1897. Location as a Source of Wealth and Power. Salt Trade. Salt in the Sahara Traded for what mineral in the south?.
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Camel caravans like this transported the salt
“The king at his own expense liberally maintaineth here great numbers of doctors, judges, priests and other learned men. There are manuscripts or written books, brought hither out of Barbary, which are sold for more money than any other merchandise.” –Leo Africanus 1510
It is clear that the Europeans knew about, and even envied and admired many aspects of the early African kingdoms. So why did much of the knowledge of these African kingdoms “disappear” from Western history and archeology?