Ashanti - West African kingdom of Asante (now in Ghana)
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Ashanti or Asante
Ashanti, or Asante, are a major ethnic
group in Ghana. The Ashanti speak Twi, an Akan language similar to Fante. For the Ashanti (Asante) Confederacy see Asanteman.
Prior to European colonization, the Ashanti people developed a large and influential empire in West Africa. The Ashanti later
developed the powerful Ashanti Confederacy and became the dominant presence in the region.
The Ashanti are one of Africa's matrilineal societies where line of descent is traced through
the female. Historically, this mother progeny relationship determined land rights, inheritance of property, offices and titles.
The father role was to catalyze the conception and provides the
nkra or the soul of the child, that is, the child received its life force, character, and personality traits from the father.
Though not considered as important as the mother, the male interaction continues in the place of birth after marriage.
Typically, individual Ashanti did not own land, but rather occupied
that which came down from a previous ancestor. Both men and women can possess property made or acquired by individual efforts.
Heirlooms and carved stools -- all possessions of family and lineage property -- may be disposed of by individuals if they
choose to do so.
Historically, an Ashanti girl
was betrothed, if not in childhood, immediately after the puberty ceremony. They did not regard marriage as an important ritual
event, but as a state that follows soon and normally after the puberty ritual. The Ashanti require a bride price - various
goods given by the boy's family to that of the girl.A man marries a cross cousin -- his father's sister's daughter
or his mother's brother's daughter. Parallel cousins are members of the same 'abusua (family) and hence prohibited
as marriage partners. Sometimes nuptial arrangements were arranged before the birth of the couple. Parents allowed boys some
initiative, but he must receive the consent of the households, the only formalities required.
Ashanti was one of the few African states able to offer serious resistance to European colonizers. Between 1823 and 1896,
Britain fought four wars against the Ashanti kings (the Anglo-Ashanti Wars). In 1900, the British finally defeated the kingdom
and incorporated it into the Gold Coast colony. While tribal and ethnic identity are important for Ashanti and other Ghanaians,
they do not define a person nor carry as much weight as they did hundreds of years ago. Being an Ashanti now is mostly a point
of reference and a linguistic tie more than a strongly cohesive tribe. In other words, typically Ashanti and Ghanaians in
general do not place extreme emphasis on tribe and are more nationalistic.
In modern Ghana, there is no ethnic group or tribe which comprise a majority of the population. While the entire Akan
population make a plurality 49% of the population, Ashanti, Fante and other Akans make up
that percentage. However, it is estimated that Ashanti are 14% of Ghana's population, followed by Fante, the Ewe
and Ga. This along with their history makes them very influential both politically and economically. The current president
John Kufuor is an Ashanti and was elected in part with their support.
Hebrewisms of West Africa
It's a historical fact that the mass majority of captive
slaves brought to the Americas, came from West Africa, although some were brought from East Africa, they were the minority.
In a very informative book entitled "HEBREWISM OF WEST AFRICA" By Joseph J Williams. He gives detailed description
of the Hebrew customs in many of the west African tribes.
The name ASHANTI has Hebrew origins,
the "TI" at the end means race of or people of, Ashan was the name of a city located in southern Israel Judah (Joshua
15:42 - 19:7 / 1st chronicles 4:32 - 6:59).
Among the ASHANTI tribe the priesthood is hereditary to
a specific family such a family has little or no possessions, is exempt from all taxes, supplied with food and advises the
king. Compare this with the Levities of ancient Israel and you will see that both are exactly the same.
The word Ashan
in Hebrew means smoke city / burning city. ASHANTI means the people of Ashan or the people of the smoke city,
This was the reference to the city of Ashan after the Romans destroyed it in 70 C.E.
Get a copy of Hebrewisms of West Africa at Amazon.com
Hebrewisms of West Africa
PAGE 22: In the
first place, many Hebrewism were discovered in the ASHANTI tribal customs. Then, several ASHANTI words were found to have
a striking resemblance to those of equivalent Hebrew meaning. finally the supreme being of the ASHANTI gave a strong indication
of being the "Yahweh" (YHWH) of the "old testament".
PAGE 80: The supreme being
of the ASHANTI is identical with ..., the Yahweh of the old testament: and further that their tribal worship
is strangely parallel to that of the divided worship that existed in Jerusalem immediately prior to the Babylonian exile,
as we will see later in more detail.
PAGE 82: The breastplate on the central figure, the Herald (Osene),
who is called by Stanley the Town-Crier, is strikingly similar to the breast plate of the High Priest among the Ancient Hebrews,
even to its division into twelve parts. The head dress of the Herald, too with its gold disc in front satisfies the description
of the miznefet as given in the Jewish Encyclopedia. "A tiara, or perhaps a peculiarly wound turban, with a peak, the
front of which bore a gold plate with inscription "Holy unto YHWH". However, the division of the breast plate into
twelve parts is certainly distinctive. So also is the head dress with gold disc in front.
Black Judaism: Story of a an American Movement Throughout most black societies today, there are Jews who are not accepted by the worldwide community of Rabbinic Jews. They are known as Black Jews, and the movement they represent is known as Black Judaism.
Black Judaism: Story of a an American Movement
Also of Interest: - Sidney Poitier, MLK Autobiography, ML King Jr - Shared Dreams, By Way of Deception, 100 Amazing Facts About the Negro and much more! -
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'The History of Ashanti Kings and the Whole Country Itself' and Other Writings, by Otumfuo, Nana Agyeman Prempeh I (Fontes Historiae Africanae, New Series: Sources of African History) [Paperback]
The History of Ashanti Kings and the Whole Country Itself is a key text for understanding the history of the great West African kingdom of Asante (now in Ghana). It is also an early--and perhaps the earliest--example of history writing in English by an African ruler and his amanuenses. It was begun in 1907 in the Seychelles on the instructions of the Asantehene Agyeman Prempeh I, who had been in British captivity with his family since 1896, during which time he had acquired proficiency in English.
The chief source of information was his mother the Asantehemaa Yaa Kyaa, who possessed an encyclopaedic knowledge of the oral history of her own lineage, which was also the royal dynasty of Asante. The result is an indispensably detailed document that charts the history of the Asante monarchy from the seventeenth to the nineteenth centuries. Context is provided by the inclusion of other writings by or about Agyeman Prempeh, together with four introductory essays by the world's leading scholars of Asante history.
This fascinating volume evokes the rich historical experience of a renowned kingdom, and is of compelling interest to all concerned with the production of indigenous historical knowledge in Africa.
'The History of Ashanti Kings and the Whole Country Itself' and Other Writings, by Otumfuo, Nana Agyeman Prempeh I (Fontes Historiae Africanae, New Series: Sources of African History)
The African American Experiences is a collection of Black Studies to understand the Past, Present and Future of the People called African American!
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