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  • Abolitionism: Topic Page
    A movement culminating in the late 18th and early 19th centuries that aimed first to end the slave trade, and then to abolish the institution of slavery and emancipate slaves. The movement took place in Europe, mainly in the UK, and in the USA. MORE
  • Slave Trade: Topic Page
    A trade in Africa which started in ancient times. MORE
  • Slavery: Topic Page
    Institution based on a relationship of dominance and submission, whereby one person owns another and can exact from that person labor or other services. MORE
  • Triangle Trade
    From Encyclopedia of World Trade From Ancient Times to the Present
    Atlantic trade between Europe, Africa, and the Americas from the sixteenth to the nineteenth centuries. MORE


  • "Scramble for Africa"
    From Greenwood Encyclopedia of International Relations
    The rapid, competitive Great Power partition of Africa during the latter third of the nineteenth century, in which formal and informal spheres of influence were converted into colonies by annexation or conquest. MORE
  • African Colonialism and Independence
    From World Politics Since 1945
    Europeans were interested in Africa long before they occupied it. In the century after the death of the Prophet Mahomet North Africa mounted the greatest threat to European Christendom which it ever faced. MORE
  • British Empire: Topic Page
    Empire covering, at its height in the 1920s, about a sixth of the landmass of the Earth, all of its lands recognizing the United Kingdom (UK) as their leader. MORE
  • Europe: Explorers, Adventurers, Traders
    From Encyclopedia of African History
    Between about 1770 and 1880, exploration of Africa made possible accurate maps and publishable information on the continent. MORE


  • Andries Wilhelmus Jacobus Pretorius
    From An African Biographical Dictionary
    Founder of the Transvaal Republic; one of the leaders of the Great Trek, during which much of the Afrikaner population moved away from British dominance to establish their own independent states. MORE
  • Barney Barnato
    From An African Biographical Dictionary
    Barnett Isaacs Barnato—financier, speculator and diamond merchant—was prominent among the White entrepreneurs who became wealthy in South Africa before the Boer War. MORE
  • Cecil Rhodes: Topic Page
    A trip in 1875 through the rich territories of Transvaal and Bechuanaland apparently helped to inspire Rhodes with the dream of British rule over all southern Africa; later he spoke of British dominion "from the Cape to Cairo." MORE
  • David Livingstone: Topic Page
    1813–73, Scottish missionary and explorer in Africa, the first European to cross the African continent. MORE
  • Henry Morton Stanley: Topic Page
    Fixed in the popular mind for his rescue of Dr. David Livingstone in 1872. Besides this feat, however, he was a significant explorer in his own right, crossing the continent and securing the Congo (now the Democratic Republic of the Congo) for the king of the Belgians. MORE
  • Leander Starr Jameson
    From An African Biographical Dictionary
    Friend and confidant of Cecil Rhodes; a leading figure in early South African politics; best remembered as the commander of a disastrous military attack against the Transvaal Republic, for which he was tried and imprisoned. MORE
  • Leo Africanus
    From Encyclopedia of African History
    Africanus completed his magnum opus on African geography, according to his own words, on March 10, 1526. MORE
  • Leopold II
    From Encyclopedia of African History
    King of Belgium (r. 1835: 1865-1909); closely associated with the “Scramble” for Africa, the formation of the Congo State, and Belgian colonial expansion. MORE
  • Lord Frederick John Dealtry Lugard
    From An African Biographical Dictionary
    Lord Frederick John Dealtry Lugard was a British imperialist and colonial administrator who drafted the most comprehensive theory of colonialism, which became the basis of much British colonial management.MORE
  • Napoleon: Topic Page
    Shortly after landing at Aboukir (Abu Qir), he won a brilliant victory over the Mamluks in the battle of the Pyramids (July, 1798). His successes, however, were made useless when the French fleet was utterly destroyed (Aug. 1–2) by Nelson in Aboukir Bay. MORE
  • Olaudah Equiano: Topic Page
    In his autobiography and his later Miscellaneous Verses, Equiano idealized his African past, taking pride in his race yet condemning those Africans who trafficked in slavery. MORE
  • Paul Kruger

    From An African Biographical Dictionary
    President of the Transvaal (1883–1902), born in Colesberg, Cape Colony, SC South Africa. MORE
  • William Wilberforce: Topic Page
    English reformer. He was instrumental in abolishing slavery in the British Empire. MORE

Companies and Organizations

  • De Beers Consolidated Mines
    From Chambers Dictionary of World History
    The diamond mining company formed by Cecil Rhodes in 1887 from the amalgamation of several companies operating at Kimberley, Cape Province. MORE

Terms and Ideas

  • African Diaspora
    From Africa and the Americas: Culture, Politics, and History
    “Diaspora” is a term describing mass migrations of people, forced and voluntary. Africa and the Americas have each been defined by such mass migrations of both kinds. MORE
  • Apartheid: Topic Page
    Racial-segregation policy of the government of South Africa from 1948 to 1994. MORE
  • Colonization: Topic Page
    Extension of political and economic control over an area by a state whose nationals have occupied the area and usually possess organizational or technological superiority over the native population. MORE
  • Colony: Topic Page
    Country under the control of immigrants who remain subject to the jurisdiction of the parent state. MORE
  • Direct Rule
    From Greenwood Encyclopedia of International Relations
    In colonial administration: When there was no local intermediary (chief, emir, bey, dey, nawab) acting as go-between for the colonial governor with the native population. MORE
  • Imperialism: Topic Page
    Broadly, the extension of rule or influence by one government, nation, or society over another. MORE
  • Indirect Rule
    From Greenwood Encyclopedia of International Relations
    When an imperial power governed a colony through local intermediaries (chief, emir, bey, dey, nawab) in return for leaving unchanged the local social arrangements. MORE
  • Orientalism
    From Cambridge Dictionary of Sociology
    Orientalism is a largely implicit paradigm within which Oriental civilizations have been understood by the West. MORE
  • Protectorate
    From Greenwood Encyclopedia of International Relations
    A territory declared, or agreed by treaty to be, dependent on and defended by a more powerful state. MORE
  • Racial Discrimination
    from Dictionary of Race, Ethnicity & Culture
    To comprehend racial discrimination adequately it is important to be clear about the distinction between PREJUDICE, RACISM and discrimination. In the context of ‘race’ and ethnicity, prejudice - literally, ‘prejudging’ - involves having or expressing adverse beliefs about individuals based on their membership of a specific ethnic or ‘racial’ group. Racism goes further by ascribing superiority or inferiority to groups - and thus to individuals on the basis of group membership - by asserting a connection between physical characteristics or ETHNICITY and shared capabilities or characteristics.
  • Uitlanders
    From Chambers Dictionary of World History
    The name given to Europeans of a variety of national origins who flocked to the Transvaal after the discovery of gold there in 1886. MORE
  • "White Man's Burden"
    From Brewer's Dictionary of Modern Phrase and Fable
    In the days of imperialism the duty supposed to be imposed upon the white races, especially the British, to govern and to educate the more 'backward' coloured peoples. MORE


  • Berlin Conference
    From A Historical Companion to Postcolonial Literatures: Continental Europe and its Empires
    The Berlin Conference has often been regarded as the beginning of the partition of Africa. Yet the ‘Scramble for Africa’ started well before it. MORE
  • Tripolitan War: Topic Page
    1800–1815, conflict between the United States and the Barbary States. MORE
  • Great Trek (1836–1838)
    From Greenwood Encyclopedia of International Relations
    The long migration of Boer families from Cape Colony to the Orange River and Natal. MORE
  • Discovery of Gold on the Witwatersrand
    From Encyclopedia of African History
    After initial prospecting success in 1886, major gold reserves were considered well proven by the early 1890s. MORE
  • Jameson Raid (1895 - 1896)
    from The Companion to British History, Routledge
    1. The uitlanders (non-Dutch Europeans) in the Boer republics (especially the Transvaal) represented the enterprise and capital, paid the taxes but had no rights. Numerous and noisy, they conspired (autumn 1895) against the Boer Govt. of Paul Kruger. The British and Boer Govts. knew this and Joseph Chamberlain (Colonial Secretary) planned to send a mediator to Johannesburg as soon as rebellion broke out. Cecil Rhodes, however, secretly prepared a small force under Dr. Jameson, in Bechuanaland, to invade the Transvaal in support of the conspirators.
  • Boer War/South African War
    From The Reader's Companion to Military History
    1899–1902. The Boer War began when Sir Alfred Milner, the British high commissioner in South Africa, goaded the Boers in the South African republics into declaring war on October 12, 1899. MORE
  • Conquest of Abyssinia
    From Chambers Dictionary of World History
    The bellicose venture by Mussolini aimed at winning popular support at home, an increase in Italian prestige and strategic gains to pressurize the British in the Eastern Mediterranean. MORE

Colonial Products

  • Coal: Topic Page
    Fuel substance of plant origin, largely or almost entirely composed of carbon with varying amounts of mineral matter. MORE
  • Coffee: Topic Page
    A tree, its seeds, and the beverage made from them. MORE
  • Diamond: Topic Page
    Mineral, one of two crystalline forms of the element carbon (see allotropy), the hardest natural substance known, used as a gem and in industry. MORE
  • Gold: Topic Page
    Gold has been known from prehistoric times and was possibly the first metal used by humans. MORE
  • Ivory: Topic Page
    Type of dentin present only in the tusks of the elephant. Ivory historically has been obtained mainly from Africa. MORE
  • Palm Oil
    From Africa and the Americas: Culture, Politics, and History
    Palm oil is a local and export commodity important to the economy of southern Nigeria. MORE


  • Gold Coast
    From Greenwood Encyclopedia of International Relations
    A section of West African coast, now part of Ghana, named for the primary product taken from it by the Portuguese, who first reached it in 1471 and then built a fortification known as Elmina in 1482. MORE
  • Kimberley
    From The Hutchinson Unabridged Encyclopedia with Atlas and Weather guide
    Diamond-mining capital city of Northern Cape Province, South Africa. Its mines have been controlled by De Beers Consolidated Mines since 1887. MORE
  • Transvaal: Topic Page
    Former province, NE South Africa. MORE
  • Witwatersrand: Topic Page
    Economic heartland of Gauteng province, South Africa. Gold was first found here in 1853. MORE

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