Central Africa 750 CE

Cattle-herding cultures are beginning to appear.

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What is happening in Central Africa in 750CE

Bantu farmers had spread through the Congo forests, and then into southern and eastern Africa, at start of the Christian era; they had settled in small, scattered villages on lake shores and in river valleys, moist areas suited to their early iron-age farming technologies. Stone-age hunter-gatherer populations were still sizeable in central Africa in the first millennium CE.

Cattle herding was uncommon in most of central Africa. Due to tsetse fly (fatal to cattle) it was limited to areas of open grasslands, such as those in the Great Rift Valley and the Serengeti plains. In the southern areas, however, the dry, open grasslands were ideal for cattle. From 650 CE onwards a cattle herding culture, the Toutswe, has spread over a broad area.

By this date, communities located along the shores of the Indian Ocean had long been in trade contact with the Middle East and India. Some important towns, such as Lamu and Rhapta, had grown up here.

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