Ancient African Civilization

Reviewed Resources for Students and Teachers

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Great ancient African civilizations, in their day, were just as splendid and glorious as any on the face of the earth.  Resources listed here provide both Afro-centered and classic approaches to the subject.  I do not pretend to list all the resources to be found, they are many and always changing.  But I do hope this will be a good place to start.


1992 Nubian Exhibition __ Here you will find general information about ancient Nubia based on the Nubian Exhibition at the University of Chicago - photos - From University of chicago -


African empires __ Brief article and list of African empires by date established. - From wikipedia -


African History on the Internet - Kingdoms and Ancient Civilizations __ Many resources about ancient Africa.  Don't go there, you will have no need to come back here. - From -


African History -- Pre-Colonial Africa __ "During this era Africa was influenced by two major movements: the expansion and consolidation of Islam and the dispersion of the Bantu peoples which led to the the development of many kingdoms and empires. "  General information and links to related materials. - From -


African Kingdoms and Empires __ General overview of African civilizations. - illustrated - From -


Ancient Africa & African empires timeline __ A well annotated timeline of African civilization.- From, Cora -  

Ancient Africa in the Electronic Passport __ A good introduction to ancient African civilization including excellent links. - illustrated - From Mr. Dowling's Electronic Passport -


Ancient Africa for Kids __ ""Ancient Africa - African history, art, architecture, religion and more"  A series of click-to-read articles. - From -


Ancient Africa for Kids - the Kingdom of Kush / Nubia __ A wide ranging overview of these civilizations for the younger set.  A good introduction for adults if you are not already familiar with them. - From - 



Ancient Africa for Teachers - Lesson Plans __ A collection of lesson plans about ancient Africa including video and games. - From -


Ancient African Civilization!! - Get Ready to be Enlightened by the Storm __ "Besides, Ancient Blacks creating the technology forming metal, Africans in the southern part of the continent had dug the most ancient mines found in the world. One of several discoveries was reported early in 1970, which was of an ancient mine in an iron-ore mountain in Swaziland, in southeast Africa. Stone as mining tools were found, and samples of charcoal remaining from old fires were tested by the radio-carbon dating technique. The mine turned out to be 43,000 years old!"  This and much, much more in this fascinating site. - From -


Ancient African Empires by History Link 101 __ "Links to Art, Daily Life, Maps, Pictures and Research on Africa designed for World History Classes." - illustrated - From -


Ancient Africa's Black Kingdoms __ "History of the Kingdom of Kush, and Ancient Nubia. Ancient Nubian Timeline . . . Ancient Africa by Historian Basil Davidson."- illustrated - From - 

Ancient History Sourcebook: Accounts of Ancient Mauretania __ Accounts of the ancient African civilization of Mauretania written by three ancient historians -- Herodotus, Strabo, and Procopius of Caesarea. - From Ancient History Sourcebook -


The Ancient Nok in the Electronic Passport __ Here is a brief overview of the Nok, one of ancient Africa's lesser known ancient civilizations. Lots of good links to related material. - photos - From Mr. Dowling's Electronic Passport -

Ancient Africa's Black Kingdoms __ This website concentrates on the role of women in ancient Nubia. Find out how the goddess Isis influenced this culture. -  

Ancient Nubia: Egypt's Rival in Africa - ONLINE! __ Thumbnail pictures you can click to enlarge. Items are dated, locations in which they were found are noted. -


Art & Archaeologie: Kush: Black Africa's Earliest... __ Many claim the African kingdom of Kush is at least as old as Egypt, maybe even older. Learn about the evidence of this ancient African civilization. - photos and other illustrations - From Culturekiosque Publications Ltd. -


Category:African civilizations __ Index of articles and resources related to ancient African civilization found in Wikipedia. - From Wikipedia - 
Civilizations in Africa __ Articles and notes about several ancient African civilizations. - From Washington State University -


Classics at Carthage: Ancient Carthage __ History of the ancient city of Carthage. - photos and other illustrations - From Carthage College -


Collapse: Mali & Songhai __ "Sometimes history seems to repeat itself. The rise and fall of two medieval kingdoms of West Africa is an example of this. Mali and Songhai, as well as the smaller kingdom of Ghana before them, were once great trading kingdoms famous for their gold. Yet despite their greatness, they each declined for similar reasons."  Find out why. - From -


Great Zimbabwe National Park, Zimbabwe __ This is a collection of photos and a very brief bit of history about the Great Zimbabwe. - From Tom Loos, Ph. D. -


Images from World History: Ancient Horn of Africa: Axum (Aksum) __ Here is a collection of photos of the remains of ancient Axum. - From Images of World History -


The Iron Age South of the Sahara __ "...sub-Saharan Africans developed metallurgy at a very early stage, possibly even before other peoples. Around 1400 BC, East Africans began producing steel in carbon furnaces (steel was invented in the west in the eighteenth century). The Iron Age itself came very early to Africa, probably around the sixth century BC, in Ethiopia, the Great Lakes region, Tanzania, and Nigeria. Iron technology, however, only spread slowly across Africa; it wasn't until the first century AD that the smelting of iron began to rapidly diffuse throughout the continent." - From Washington State University -

Kingdoms of the Medieval Sudan __ Series of essays about four ancient kingdoms of Sudanic Africa. - photos and other illustrations - From Xavier University -


Mathematicians of the African Diaspora presents THE ANCIENTS __ "Most histories of mathematics devote only a few pages to Ancient Egypt and to northern Africa during the 'Middle Ages´. Generally they ignore the history of mathematics in Africa south of the Sahara and give the impression that this history either did not exist or, at least, is not knowable,..."  You will find many articles and resources to dispute that. - From -

Medieval Nubia __ History of Nubia during the Byzantine period. "The conversion of the Nubian peoples to Christianity in the sixth century A.D. began a period of cultural and political advance in the Sudan, and gave cohesion to the riverain kingdoms already existing before the arrival of the missionaries. Combining with the underlying native culture, new elements from the Mediterranean produced an intellectual and artistic activity, shown in the archaeological remains, which contradicts the impression of barbarism gained from reading the mainly hostile Arabic accounts of the country." - photos and other illustrations - From Sudan Antiquities Service -



Role of Women in Nubia [Kneller] __ The modern name Candace is taken from the Nubian "kandake" which means "queen mother". This and other facts of interest are presented -

Stone Circles of the Gambia __ Find out about the stone circles of ancient Gambia. - illustrated -


Trekking to Timbuktu: Trade in Ancient West Africa--Teacher Version __ A lesson plan.  "Trade has played an important role in the economy of West Africa since very early times. As early as 300 AD, camel caravans carried salt from mines in the Sahara Desert to trading centers along the Niger River in present-day Mali. Their mission was to exchange the salt for the gold that was mined in forests near the headwaters of the Niger. West Africa’s first kingdom, Ghana, became wealthy and powerful because it controlled the trade routes and commercial activities in its region."  Detailed lesson plan including goals, procedure and materials needed. - From - 

Wonders of the African World __ This website supporting a PBS broadcast introduces you to ancient African civilizations. - illustrated - From PBS -



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