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The Empire of Songhai

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The Empire of Songhai

  1. 1. • • • • • In 1365, the Songhai city of Gao declared it’s independence from Mali 1468, Muslim leaders in the city of Timbuktu asked the Songhai king Sunni Ali to overthrow the Berbers Sunni Ali did as he was asked, and killed many people who lived in the city as well As a result Sunni Ali established a reputation as a powerful and harsh leader He went on to expand the empire and add trade cities
  2. 2. • • • • When Sunni Ali died in 1492 his son was declared the ruler of Songhai – However, a leader named Askia Muhammad wanted the throne In 1493, Askia Muhammad defeated Sunni Ali’s son and became the ruler of the Songhai people He took control of the salt mines in the north and expanded Mail’s other borders- Songhai covered more land than Mali He increased trade with Europe and Asia
  3. 3. • His greatest achievement was organizing the government of Songhai – – – • Divided Songhai into provinces Appointed directors of finance, agriculture, army, and navy Set up an organized tax system He also spread Islam – Sent scholars to regions that had little contact with Islam
  4. 4. • • • • By 1519, Askia Muhammad was half blind and very old In 1528 his son removed him from power The rulers that followed were very weak which allowed the Moraccan forces to capture the salt mines in the north and eventually the cities of Timbuktu and Gao – this led to the eventual collapse of the empire However, life went on as usual for most West African people
  5. 5. • • • • By 1519, Askia Muhammad was half blind and very old In 1528 his son removed him from power The rulers that followed were very weak which allowed the Moraccan forces to capture the salt mines in the north and eventually the cities of Timbuktu and Gao – this led to the eventual collapse of the empire However, life went on as usual for most West African people

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