By their height, the Swahili city-states were distinctly Muslim; they had large mosques built of local coral stone. The Swahili, regardless of their economic status, drew a distinction between themselves as Muslims and the “uncultured,” non-Muslim Africans of the interior.
What was unique about the cities of the Swahili Kingdom?
The city-states were independent sultanates, although they shared a common language (Swahili) and religion (Islam). … Collectively, the city-states are often referred to as “stone towns,” because many buildings were constructed using stone—coral blocks held together with mortar.
What makes Swahili unique?
The word Kiswahili is a general term for many varieties of the language spoken along the East African coast. … Also unique to Swahili speakers is the way they communicate with each other indirectly by use of the popular language, also known as leso.
What were the Swahili city states of East Africa?
The major autonomous, but symbiotic, city-states stretched over 1,500 miles from Mogadishu (in modern day Somalia) in the north to Sofala (in modern Mozambique) in the south and included Mombasa, Gedi, Pate, Lamu, Malindi, Zanzibar, and Kilwa.
What was the evolution of the Swahili city states of East Africa?
The earliest Swahili towns emerged in the 8th century and, with increasing trade and wealth, developed into prosperous and complex city-states in the 15th century before they were displaced by the Portuguese in the 16th and 17th centuries, Omani in the 18th and 19th centuries, and Europeans in the 20th century.
What did the Swahili city-states do?
At that time, residents of the Swahili city-states played a pivotal role as middlemen, selling gold, timber, ivory, resins, coconut oil, and slaves from the interior regions of Africa to traders arriving from throughout the Indian Ocean World.
What religion do Swahili practice?
Today, most Swahili people are Sunni Muslims. It is the largest group within the religion of Islam. The Swahili Coast peaked during the medieval period.
Is Swahili a dying language?
When you move across the East African region, you will be shocked by the way the language is slowly dying. … In Tanzania where Swahili is still comparatively strong—there are signs that the youth are more inclined to speak English.
Why do we learn Swahili?
Swahili Knowledge Will Reveal African Culture to You
Through language learning, they get to know and understand different customs, natures, and behaviors. The Swahili language originated in a way as a commercial language.
How do you say hi in Swahili?
There are basically five ways to say hello in Swahili:
- Hujambo or jambo (how are you?) – Sijambo (seeJAmbo) (I am fine / no worries)
- Habari? (any news?) – nzuri (nZOOree) (fine)
- U hali gani? (oo HAlee GAnee) (how are you) – njema (fine)
- Shikamoo (a young person to an elder) – marahaba.
- For casual interactions: mambo?
Is Swahili in African language?
Kiswahili (Swahili) is a major Bantu language spoken in East Africa. There are an estimated 50,000,000 speakers, which makes it the most widely spoken language on the African continent. Approximately 2,000,000 people use Swahili as a home language.
Where do the Swahili live in Africa?
The Swahili people (or Waswahili) are a Bantu ethnic group inhabiting East Africa. Members of this ethnicity primarily reside on the Swahili coast, in an area encompassing the Zanzibar archipelago, littoral Kenya, the Tanzania seaboard, northern Mozambique, the Comoros Islands, and Northwest Madagascar.
What is the importance of the Swahili language in East Africa?
It is a language of influence politically, economically and socially, and a knowledge of it can deepen business relationships. 4. Swahili plays an important part in education in several African countries. Uganda made Swahili a required subject in primary schools in 1992.
Why are the Swahili city-states important?
These city-states truly achieved international trade dominance around 1350 CE, after they had all converted to Islam. Muslim merchants controlled the world’s most extensive inland and maritime trade routes, and the Swahili city-states had attracted a large number of Persian merchants looking to expand.
What is the Swahili civilization?
The Swahili Civilization is a culture of people in east Africa. … The Swahili civilization, starting in the 10th Century, became a land of cultural assimilation, which included the mixture of the cultures of Arabs and Persians, as well as Africans. There were some cities that flourished under Swahili civilization.
What was the most powerful kingdom in Central Africa?
The most powerful of these states was the Songhai Empire, which expanded rapidly beginning with king Sonni Ali in the 1460s. By 1500, it had risen to stretch from Cameroon to the Maghreb, the largest state in African history.