Zulu Terror: The Mfecane Holocaust, 1815–1840
Zulu Terror: The Mfecane Holocaust, 1815–18400 0 5 Scritto da: Robin Binckes
From 1815 to 1840, southeastern Africa experienced a devastating period of warfare between the Zulus, the Matabele, and other indigenous peoples. Though the causes of the unrest—which the Zulu called the Mfecane—are still debated by historians, we know that hundreds of thousands of lives lost. Some estimate the total number of deaths to be near two million.
At the center of the turmoil was the Zulu Kingdom and its King Shaka, whose wars of expansion sparked mass migrations among smaller tribes. One of Shaka’s lieutenants, Mzilikazi Khumalo, escaped execution and began a trail of destruction from Zululand north to the Highveld. Refugees from Mzilikazi’s warpath then formed their own alliance—including with the Dutch-speaking Voortrekkers, arriving on their own “Great Trek” to escape British control. Finally defeated in 1836 by the Voortrekkers in a nine-day battle, Mzilikazi and his followers crossed the Limpopo River and founded the kingdom of the Matabele in what is now Zimbabwe.
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