History of Nigeria

It's commonly believed that history presents the glorious past of a country which is replete with unprecedented events and incidents that give the nation its own political identity. The history of Nigeria too represents the remarkable incidents that changed and redefined the various aspects of the country. Since the ancient times the land of Nigeria, has been inhabited by different groups of tribes coming from other places.

Historical Background of Nigeria

Ancient History of Nigeria
Historical evidences indicate that during 9000 B.C. IwoEleru and UgwuelleUturu settled in the south western part of Nigeria. In the 4th century B.C. agriculture was widely practiced along with the growth of ceramic industries. However, the ancient Nigerian culture owes its origin to the Nok people who thrived extensively between 500 BC and 200 AD on the Jos Plateau situated in the northeastern part of Nigeria. The comprehensive history of Nigeria remains incomplete without mentioning the historic reign of Yoruba kingdoms, Igbo kingdom of Nri and the Edo kingdom of Benin. It's important to note that the Yoruba's have pre dominated the ancient land of Nigeria and established their vast empire on the banks of River Niger. The Yoruba's were credited for their organizational set up which helped to carry forward many planned activities in field of agriculture and growth of trade and commerce. With the coming of Oyo and Benin in the 15th century also exerted tremendous influence over the political scenario of the country, it's believed that they also had some mythical origins and bore spiritual importance to the Yoruba's. With the emergence of trade relations between different countries and the opening of TransSaharan trade links between the western Sudan and the Mediterranean region paved the way for establishment of other dynasties and extension of the present boundaries. This led to the formation of the northern kingdoms of Savanna comprising of states as Hausa, Ghana, Gao and Kanem. In the later years, the kingdom of Kanem was expanded westward with Borno. Towards the 11th century, popular Hausa states such as Kano, Katsina, and Gobir grew to be popular hubs of trade and industry.

Colonial Rule in Nigeria and Nigeria's Struggle for Independence
During the reign of Songhai Empire in 16th century, Islamic art and culture widely spread throughout the land. But their fall in 1591, created political turmoil with many states falling apart and rise of war conflicts between other rulers. After the Napoleon wars, the British tried to expand their colonial rule in Africa and began to establish trade ties with Nigeria. In the year 1901, Nigeria officially became a part of the huge British Empire. In the later years, the whole of Nigeria fought together for the freedom struggle of the country. The political history of Nigeria gained momentum with the forty years of struggle for independence. Finally on October 1, 1960 the country achieved its independence and became a republic in 1963 when Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe became the first President of the country.

Thus, an overview of the history of Nigeria gives you an amazing glimpse into its glorious past.


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