Central Africa 1648 CE

The spread of American maize and cassava is leading to population growth, and has boosted the process to state formation in central Africa. Kingdoms modelled on the Luba state (and in some cases offshoots of it) have ...

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What is happening in Central Africa in 1648CE

The spread of American maize and cassava is leading to population growth, and has boosted the process to state formation in central Africa. Kingdoms modelled on the Luba state (and in some cases offshoots of it) have appeared amongst the Lunda and the Maravi, the Imbangala (Kasanje) and the Lozi. Other kingdoms – Loango, Tio and Kuba – have been formed in areas of dense population within the vast Congo forests; and Tutsi and Hima pastoralists have established their rule over states in the Lakes region.

On the Atlantic coast, a new factor in central African history has been increasingly felt since the late-15th century, European demand for African slaves. The slave trade routes are gradually extending inland. Europeans have also made themselves felt on the Indian Ocean coast, where Swahili states have been attacked – and some occupied – by Portuguese. The powerful kingdom of Matupa has blocked Portuguese penetration of the interior.

Further north, the Masai are arriving in their modern homeland, while the Kikuyu have begun moving into theirs from the north east.

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