Transcript of "Ethiopia historic highlights july 21, 2013"
13 Months of Sunshine
Geography• Location: Eastern Africa (Horn of Africa)• Neighboring Countries: Kenya, Somalia, Sudan,South Sudan, Djibouti and Eritrea• Geographic coordinates: 8 00 N, 38 00 E• Area: total: 1,127,127 sq km (comparative: slightlyless than twice the size of Texas)• Climate: tropical monsoon with wide topographic-induced variation• Terrain: high plateau with central mountain rangedivided by Great Rift Valley• Natural resources: gold, platinum, copper, potash,natural gas, hydropower
Demographic• Population: 84.7 Million (2011 Census) – The second most populous nation in Africa• Ethnic Groups: Highly diverse, containing over 80 different ethnic groups• Languages: 90 different languages or dialectic are spoken throughout Ethiopia.• The official language of the country is Amharic• Religion:• Christian: 63%• Ethiopian Orthodox: 43.5%, Protestant: 18.6% and Catholic: 0.7 % of thepopulation• Muslim: 33%• Traditional: 3%• Others: 1%• Jewish: A small Ethiopian Jewish community also reside in the northern parts ofthe country although almost all of them have emigrated to Israel
Antiquities• The source of humanity: Ethiopia hasarchaeological and anthropological significance.Hominid fossils found in Ethiopia indicate that theregion may be the origin of humanity’s presenceon Earth, and the Nile River valley and delta arethe home of numerous archaeological sites• The most significant discover was made in1974 of fossil fragments called Lucy, alsoknown as "dinknesh," which means thewondrous one, believed to have lived 3.2millions years ago.• Lucy recently returned back to Ethiopia (May2013) after a six year tour of the UnitedStates• Several additional discovers of fossilfragments has been discovered since then,with some dating older than LucyWe are all Ethiopians
• Recorded History: Unique among African countries, Ethiopia has a written history ofover 3,000 years dating back to Queen of Sheba and King SolomonAncient HistoryChristianity: Significant contribution to early Christianity as one ofthe first nations to officially adopt the religion during the 4th Century.The Bible was translated into Geez long before it was translated intothe English (around the 3rd century). Ethiopia is mentioned in theBible over 40 times• Psalms 68:31 – “Princes shall come out of Egypt; Ethiopia shall soon stretch outher hands unto God.”• Acts 8:27 – “And he arose and went: and, behold, a man of Ethiopia, an eunuchof great authority under Candace queen of the Ethiopians, who had the chargeof all her treasure, and had come to Jerusalem for to worship”Islam: Significant contribution to early Islam as the first nation toprovide refuge for prosecuted Muslims fleeing Arabia. ProphetMohammed sent his followers to Ethiopia when he was alive, 1400years ago. Ethiopia is mentioned in the Quran several times:• When Prophet Mohammed saw the persecution to which his followers weresubjected to in Mecca, he told them to find safe haven in northern Ethiopia,Abyssinia, where they would "find a king there who does not wrong anyone."It was the first hijra (migration) in Islam history
The Arc of the CovenantThe Arc of the Covenant: The Ethiopian Orthodox Church claims to posses the Tablets ofStone on which the Ten Commandments were inscribed. (Locally known as Tabot).• The object is currently kept under guard in a treasury near the Church of Our LadyMary of Zion in Axum, Ethiopia• The Arc arrived in Ethiopia nearly 3,000 years ago, and has been guarded by asuccession of virgin monks who, once anointed, are forbidden to set foot outside thechapel grounds until they die.• Replicas of the Arc are kept in every Ethiopian church, each with its own dedicationto a particular saint. This tradition is also practiced at the Ethiopian Orthodoxchurches in the Denver metro areaTabot Ceremony The Arc of the Covenant Sheba’s Palace, Axum
The Axumite EmpireThe Axumite Empire: Dating back to the 2nd century BC, it was one of the world superpowers during its time, along with the Egyptian, Greek, Byzantine and Persian empires• At the height of its power (4th to 7th centuries AD), the Axumite Empire controlledmost of North East Africa and the southern parts of the Arabian Peninsula.• The achievements of this grand culture are recorded today in the ruins of its cities,reservoirs, temples and, most remarkably, its towering black granite obelisks
Debre Damot MonasteryDebre Damot Monastery:• Build during the 6th century AD on top of flat-toppedmountain in Adigrat of the Tigray region in Ethiopia.• The monastery, accessible only by rope, is known for itscollection of ancient manuscripts and for having theearliest existing church building in Ethiopia still in itsoriginal style
The Zagwe Dynasty and King LalibelaThe Zagwe Dynasty (900 – 1200 AD): After the decline of the Axumite empire, lamentingtheir lost grandeur, Ethiopias rulers retreated with their Christian subjects to the loftyescarpment of the central uplands creating a striving medieval dynasty with magnificentarchitecture and monasteries that still stand.Lalibela: King Lalibela who has spent time in Jerusalem as a youth is said to haveenvisioned to created a new Jerusalem in Ethiopia after the capture of old Jerusalem byMuslims in 1187. He built an entire city, mostly under ground, curved out of single rocksconnected by tunnels and reservoirs.Magnificent Architectures: There aretwelve churches and chapels, includingvarious shrines. Four churches aremonolithic in the strict sense; theremainder are excavated churches indifferent degrees of separation from therock. The walls of the trenches andcourtyards contain cavities and chamberssometimes filled with the mummies ofpious monks and pilgrims
The Kingdom of FasiledesGonder – the 1600’s• King Fasiledes was credited for restoring the officialstatus of the traditional Ethiopian Orthodox Church andrestoring ancient relationships with Egypt, Europe andIndia.• Established Gonder as the capital of Ethiopia• Built over 44 well known churches and cathedralsincluding St. Mary of Zion at Axum• Credits for hundreds of stone castles, architectures,and bridges across Ethiopia
3,000 years of IndependenceThe Battle of Adwa: The first defeat ofEuropean forces in Africa during their attempt tocolonize the continent. The Battle of Adwa wasfought on 1 March 1896 between the EthiopianEmpire and the Kingdom of Italy near the town ofAdwa, Ethiopia, in Tigray. It was the climacticbattle of the First Italo-Ethiopian War, securingEthiopian sovereignty.World War II: The second attempt by Italy tocolonize Ethiopia. Italy’s briefly occupiedEthiopia, by mass murdering millions ofEthiopians using Chemical weapons; initiatingone of the first battle grounds of World War II.Ethiopian King Haile Selassie played a major rolein creating a coalition with the British army todefeat the Italian forces
Haile Selassie IRas Teferri – The last EmperorHaile Selsassie I: (Ras Teferri) a defining figure in Ethiopian, African and Caribbean history• Heir to a dynasty that traced its origins by tradition from King Solomon and Empress of theAxumite Kingdom (Queen of Sheba) 1916 – 1974• Ruled Ethiopia from 1916 to 1974; gained international fame for his Advocacy for Africanindependence from colonization and race equality for the African diaspora• Drive for pan-Africanism and African union; co-founded the African Union – AU• Founding member of the League of Nation (United Nations - UN)• Spoke out at the League of Nation against the use of chemical weapons and provedseminal in promoting international multilateralism and collective security• 200,000 – 800,000 Caribbeans considered him a messiah creating the Ras Tefferiansimmovement
MusicSaint YaredSaint Yared: (April 25, 505 – May 20, 571) was alegendary Ethiopian musician credited withinventing the sacred music tradition of theEthiopian Orthodox Church and Ethiopias systemof musical notation.• Invented the Zema or the chant tradition ofEthiopia, particularly the chants of theEthiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church, whichare still performed today.• Regarded as a saint of the Ethiopian OrthodoxChurch with a feast day of May 19.Musical Instruments: Unique musicalinstruments in various formats have been usedfor thousands of yearsDances: Various forms of dances that areauthentic to Ethiopia are practices across thenation
Cuisine and CoffeeEthiopian Food: characteristically consists ofvegetable and often very spicy meat dishes,usually in the form of Wat (also wet or wot), athick stew, served atop Injera, a large sourdoughflatbread. Ethiopians eat exclusively with theirright hands, using pieces of injera to pick up bitesof entrées and side dishes. Utensils are rarelyused with Ethiopian cuisineCoffee Ceremony: Ethiopia known to the birthplace of coffee. The coffee ceremony is one ofthe most recognizable parts of Ethiopian culture.Coffee is offered when visiting friends, duringfestivities, or as a daily staple of life. If coffee ispolitely declined then most likely tea (shai) willbe served
Unique Writing System and NumbersGe’ez Alphabets and NumbersGeez Alphabets: an ancient script used as asyllable alphabet for several languages ofEthiopia and Eritrea. In Amharic and Tigrinyathe script is often called fidäl (ፊፊፊ), whichmeans "script" or "alphabet".• Earliest inscriptions dates back to 9thcentury BC• Written from left to right• Computer software to write Ge’ez scriptswas invented by Ethiopian Scientist Dr.Aberra Molla from ColoradoNumbers: Geez uses a system of ones andtens comparable to the Hebrew, Arabic abjadand Greek numerals, but unlike these systems,rather than giving numeric values to letters, ithas digits derived from the Coptic letter-numbers. The Ethiopian numbers weredeveloped independently prior to 4th centuryAD (Ayele Bekerie of Cornell University)
Time CountingThe Ethiopian Colander – 13 Months a YearThe Ethiopian calendar: also called the Geez calendar, is an ancient colander which is stillused as the principal calendar used in Ethiopia and also serves as the liturgical calendar forChristians in Eritrea.• It is based on the older Alexandrian/Coptic calendar, derives from the Egyptian calendar• The Calendar has twelve months of exactly 30 days each plus a thirteenth month of five orsix days, depending on the year (add a day for leap year)• The current year according to the Ethiopian calendar is 2005, began on Sept 11, 2012• In a recent debate, the calendar was acknowledged as historically accurate by His HolinessPope Benedict XVI in response to an open letter written by Dr. Aberra Molla
Philosophers and ThinkersEthiopian Philosophy: The character of Ethiopian philosophy is determined by the particularconditions of evolution of the Ethiopian culture. Thus, Ethiopian philosophy arises from theconfluence of Greek and Patristic philosophy with African traditional modes of thought.Because of the early isolation from its sources of spirituality – Byzantium and Alexandria –Ethiopian philosophy has some of its philosophical heritage through Arabic versions.Zera Yacob: "Seed of Jacob” (1399–1468) was King of Ethiopia from 1434 –1469 (throne name Constantine I), and a member of the Solomonic Dynasty fromthe area known as Tilq in what is now the region of OromiaWalda Heywat: A disciple of Zera Yacob wrote a philosophical treatise,systematizing his master’s thought. He accorded more attention to the practicaland educational problems, and he tried to connect Zera Yacob’s philosophy withthe kind of wisdom expressed in the earlier sapiential literature. Walda Heywatrecurs intensively to illustrations and parabola, and many times the source of hisexamples is the Book of the Wise Philosophers
Africa and EthiopiaColonization and Liberation• The colors of Pan-Africanism: Green Yellow Red - many African nations adopted theEthiopian Flag colors at time of their independence• As one of the only two nations in Africa that has never been colonized (Ethiopia and Liberia),Ethiopia played a major role in the liberation of Africa from colonization and the movementfor pan-African unity• Co-founder of the Organization of African Union (Current head quarter located in AddisAbaba, Ethiopia) and an advocate for liberation the League of Nation (UN)• Ethiopia provided material, moral and military support through out the years of colonizationto help other African nations.• E.g. Ethiopia issues Nelson Mandela a passport in 1962 enabling him to travel bydefying the Apartheid rulers who labeled him a terrorist“Ethiopia has always held a special placein my own imagination and the prospectof visiting Ethiopia attracted me morestrongly than a trip to France, Englandand America combined. I felt I would bevisiting my own genesis, unearthing theroots of what made me an African.”Nelson Mandela in his AutobiographyFlag of Ghana Flag of Mali
United States and EthiopiaFriendshipKorean War: In June 1950, when the Korean War began, the U.N. built a coalition tofight against communist North Korean and Chinese forces. Haile Selassie, then emperorof Ethiopia, formed the Kagnew Battalions from his personal bodyguards. During the war,three battalions served in Korea. Another arrived following the cessation of hostilities.During the fighting, 122 Ethiopian troops were killed, 526 were wounded. The Ethiopiantroops never lost a single battle during this war."We went with Americans to the front line and fought together. From that, we helped agreat nation, Korea, to survive.“ Yilma Getachew – Korean War Veteran and Hero
Ethiopian Cultural Event – Denver, COJuly 21st, 2013Ethiopian Evening at the Spring Institutefor Intercultural Learninghttp://spring-institute.org/Presented by: Nebiyu Asfawnebiyuasfaw@yahoo.com
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