The Emergence Of Mali Empire



This unit will give you clear understanding of how the fall of Ghana gave rise to emergence of Mali Empire. It emphasis the importance of economic relations among those Sudanese states in the development of Empires in the Sudan. It focuses on the emergency of Mali, it’s growth and development. It also delve into the political system and the important role of some political leaders.


In the study of African history, the fall of one empire usually results to the rise of another in the same geographical location. The new Empire fills the vacuum that was created by the declined Empire. This also provides the international relations among African nations. It shows the connection of these nations. In the case of the emergence of Mali, the Mandingo Empire of Mali broke forth from the ruins of Ghana Empire. Tradition of Western Sudan suggests that Kangaba, the little state that was to grow into the mighty empire of Mali, was founded some time before 1000 A.D. The Mandinka people of Kangaba were also middlemen in the gold trade during the later period of ancient Ghana. They were important among those who carried to the north the gold of Wangara, the gold bearing g country that is now the northern part of the Republic Of Guinea, to the market center of Ghana. Probably, it was brought this gold – traders of Kanguba that the rulers of Ghana and their agent were able to secure their main supplies of gold. This again, carefully reflect the international trade relations between the people.

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Economic development was greatly reflected in Ancient Ghana and ancient Mali relations. The traders of Mali, the Dyula or Wangara as they were still called, became famous for their skills and enterprise. It is obvious they were similarly active in the days of Ancient Ghana as well. The interest of their relationship was two sided. The government of Ghana needed gold, and it is largely from Wangara that Ghana’s godmother came from. But the traders who dealt in gold of Wangara also needed market, and it was only in Ghana that they can find market. However, when the Empire of Ghana was split into pieces by attacks from without and revolt from within, this peaceful system of two way interest was destroyed. All was then in the melting pot for new rivalries for power. Eventually, as we have seen, Sumanguru prevailed. Once Sumanguru had mastered Kumbi and the main caravan routes, it was with him and his agent that the Mandinka of Kangaba had to conduct their business. Be that as it may, in about 1240, the people of Kangaba decided to enter the struggle themselves. They made a bid for their own independence and they won, thus, this was the emergence of Mali.

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