By Basil Davidson
This article is designed for college kids getting ready for O point historical past, supplying an exam of a few of the key developments and occasions in West African background from advert 1000-1800.
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Additional info for A history of West Africa, 1000-1800
T h e y did this i n 1727 and after. T h i s led to the rise of the military state of the F o n . I n the end, after AD 1800, this F o n state helped towards the destruction of the empire of O y o . Of course, there were plenty of other reasons why s m a l l states grew into b i g states or empires. But the chief causes of this development were economic, military, and political. 2 Military A people who happened to occupy a good trading position found that they could become stronger, and make their trading system bigger, by getting control of their neighbours.
These Songhay were enterprising traders and welcomed L e m t u n a (Berber) travelling merchants from the Adrar oases to the north of them. T h r o u g h these Saharan merchants the caravan trade w i t h the Songhay market-centres prospered and grew. 1 1 Gao lies al the southern endof the route which caravans have followed through rhe central Sahara for more than two thousand years. 69 all M u s l i m s , upon whose caravan skills he and his people greatly relied for their trade. L i k e other M u s l i m kings i n the Western Sudan, then and later, Dia K o s s o i and his successors tried not to let their acceptance of Islam become offensive to their o w n people, who generally continued to believe i n their local r e l i g i o n s .
3 Political A people who happened to occupy a bad position for defending themselves, or for developing their o w n political system, found that they could gain from going to war w i t h their neighbours. If they w o n that war, then they also found that it w o u l d be wise to remain strong. But to remain strong they had to dominate their neighbours. T h i s led them into b u i l d i n g a bigger state than before. Example T h e rise of the F o n state i n D a h o m e y . After about AD 1600 the people who lived i n l a n d from the coast of Dahomey were the F o n .