Notice: This is the official website of the All Empires History Community (Reg. 10 Feb 2002)

  FAQ FAQ  Forum Search   Register Register  Login Login

Ajuuraan Empire (East Africa)

 Post Reply Post Reply
Author
Fula View Drop Down
Pretorian
Pretorian
Avatar

Joined: 16-Dec-2011
Location: Maryland
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 170
  Quote Fula Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Ajuuraan Empire (East Africa)
    Posted: 05-Jul-2012 at 14:49

Key facts
Established 14th century - Disestablished 17th-century
Location: Somalia/Horn of Africa

1. Medieval hydraulic empire (only African hydraulic empire during middle ages)
2. One of the first non-European states to successfully engage Portugal in naval warfare. Several battles were waged between the Portuguese and the Ajuuraan who defended their cities from Portuguese occupation.
3. First empire in Africa and one of the first non-European states which succeeded in mobilizing an operation to intervene to assist foreign states and drive the Portuguese out of established colonies. At the request of rulers from Southeast Africa, a joint Ajuuraan-Ottoman naval force freed occupied cities. The Portuguese eventually recaptured these colonies.
4. The empire was also engaged in exploration and had a diplomatic presence as far as China where it established the first recorded African community in China during reign of Emperor Yongle (1360 –1424). Ajuuraan explorers for example went to the Maldives where they occupied the island and found gold before the arrival of the Portuguese. Merchants from Mogadishu established a colony in Mozambique to extract gold from the mines in Sofala etc.
5. Merchants sailed to Cairo, Damascus, Mocha, Mombasa, Aden, Madagascar, Hyderabad and the islands of the Indian Ocean and the Red Sea, establishing communities along the way.
6. The Ajuuraans had their own currency which was in wide circulation. 15th century Ajuuraan coins were found recently in the UAE.

More info below:

The Ajuuraan state or Ajuuraan sultanate[1] (Somali: Saldanadda Ajuuraan, Arabic: اٍمارة أجوران‎) was a Somali Muslim empire[2][3][4] that ruled over large parts of the Horn of Africa in the Middle Ages. Through a strong centralized administration and an aggressive military stance towards invaders, the Ajuuraan Empire successfully resisted an Oromo invasion from the west and a Portuguese incursion from the east during the Gaal Madow and the Ajuuraan-Portuguese wars. Trading routes dating from the ancient and early medieval periods of Somali maritime enterprise were strengthened or re-established, and foreign trade and commerce in the coastal provinces flourished with ships sailing to and coming from a many kingdoms and empires in East Asia, South Asia, Europe, the Near East, North Africa and East Africa.

The empire left an extensive architectural legacy, being the major medieval Somali power engaged in castle and fortress building, with many of the hundreds of ruined fortifications dotting the landscapes of Somalia today attributed to Ajuuraan engineers.[5] and includes many of the pillar tomb fields, necropolises and ruined cities built in that era. During the Ajuuraan period many regions and peoples in East Africa converted to Islam because of the theocratic nature of the government. The royal family, the House of Gareen, expanded its territories and established its hegemonic rule through a skillful combination of warfare, trade linkages and alliances.[6]

As an hydraulic empire, the Ajuuraan Empire monopolized the water resources of the Shabelle and Jubba rivers. Through hydraulic engineering, it also constructed many of the limestone wells and cisterns of the state that are still operative and in use today. The rulers developed new systems for agriculture and taxation, which continued to be used in parts of the Horn of Africa as late as the 19th century.

Ajuuraan-Portuguese Wars
The European Age of discovery brought Europe's then superpower the Portuguese empire to the coast of East Africa, which at the time enjoyed a flourishing trade with foreign nations. The wealthy southeastern city-states of Kilwa, Mombasa, Malindi, Pate and Lamu were all systematically sacked and plundered by the Portuguese. Tristão da Cunha then set his eyes on Ajuuraan territory, where the battle of Barawa was fought. After a long period of engagement, the Portuguese soldiers burned the city and looted it. However, fierce resistance by the local population and soldiers resulted in the Portuguese's failure to permanently occupy the city, and the inhabitants who had fled to the interior would eventually return and rebuild the city. After Barawa, Tristão would set sail for Mogadishu, which was the richest city on the East African coast. But word had spread of what had happened in Barawa, and a large troop mobilization had taken place. Many horsemen, soldiers and battleships in defense positions were now guarding the city. Nevertheless, Tristão still opted to storm and attempt to conquer the city, although every officer and soldier in his army opposed this, fearing certain defeat if they were to engage their opponents in battle. Tristão heeded their advice and sailed for Socotra instead. In 1660, the Portuguese in Mombasa surrendered to a joint Somali-Omani force.[31

Over the next several decades Somali-Portuguese tensions would remain high and the increased contact between Somali sailors and Ottoman corsairs worried the Portuguese who sent a punitive expedition against Mogadishu under Joao de Sepulveda, which was unsuccessful.[32] Ottoman-Somali cooperation against the Portuguese in the Indian Ocean reached a high point in the 1580s when Ajuuraan clients of the Somali coastal cities began to symphatize with the Arabs and Swahilis under Portuguese rule and sent an envoy to the Turkish corsair Mir Ali Bey for a joint expedition against the Portuguese. He agreed and was joined by a Somali fleet, which began attacking Portuguese colonies in Southeast Africa.[33]

The Somali-Ottoman offensive managed to drive out the Portuguese from several important cities such as Pate, Mombasa and Kilwa. However, the Portuguese governor sent envoys to India requesting a large Portuguese fleet. This request was answered and it reversed the previous offensive of the Muslims into one of defense. The Portuguese armada managed to re-take most of the lost cities and began punishing their leaders, but they refrained from attacking Mogadishu.[34] Throughout the 16th and 17th century successive Somali Sultans defied the Portuguese economic monopoly in the Indian Ocean by employing a new coinage which followed the Ottoman pattern, thus proclaiming an attitude of economic independence in regard to the Portuguese.

1414 painting by Shen Du depiciting a giraffe brought to China from the Ajuuraan Empire in the Horn of Africa, during the 12th year of Yongle. The Chinese associated the giraffe with the mythical Qilin.
Back to Top
Nick1986 View Drop Down
Emperor
Emperor
Avatar
Mighty Slayer of Trolls

Joined: 22-Mar-2011
Location: England
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 7940
  Quote Nick1986 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05-Jul-2012 at 19:17
Can we see some of their coins? This empire sounds quite advanced
Me Grimlock not nice Dino! Me bash brains!
Back to Top
red clay View Drop Down
Administrator
Administrator
Avatar
Tomato Master Emeritus

Joined: 14-Jan-2006
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 10111
  Quote red clay Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07-Jul-2012 at 14:12
Fula, did this empire, by any chance go under another name at anytime?  I have not heard of this before.  I'm by no means an expert on this period, but it's the first time I've seen the name. 
"Arguing with someone who hates you or your ideas, is like playing chess with a pigeon. No matter what move you make, your opponent will walk all over the board and scramble the pieces".
Unknown.
Back to Top
Nick1986 View Drop Down
Emperor
Emperor
Avatar
Mighty Slayer of Trolls

Joined: 22-Mar-2011
Location: England
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 7940
  Quote Nick1986 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12-Jul-2012 at 19:08
From what i understand, the Ajuuraan sultanate was based in modern-day Somalia and lasted from the 14th-17th centuries. They had a powerful military equipped with firearms supplied by their Ottoman allies and fought several wars against the Portuguese
Me Grimlock not nice Dino! Me bash brains!
Back to Top
Fula View Drop Down
Pretorian
Pretorian
Avatar

Joined: 16-Dec-2011
Location: Maryland
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 170
  Quote Fula Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18-Jul-2012 at 12:07
Originally posted by red clay

Fula, did this empire, by any chance go under another name at anytime?  I have not heard of this before.  I'm by no means an expert on this period, but it's the first time I've seen the name. 
 
Hmm? perhaps. This is the only name I've heard


Edited by Fula - 18-Jul-2012 at 12:07
Back to Top
Nick1986 View Drop Down
Emperor
Emperor
Avatar
Mighty Slayer of Trolls

Joined: 22-Mar-2011
Location: England
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 7940
  Quote Nick1986 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19-Jul-2012 at 19:32
Me Grimlock not nice Dino! Me bash brains!
Back to Top
Kaise Maio View Drop Down
Immortal Guard
Immortal Guard


Joined: 11-Sep-2014
Location: Somalia
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 1
  Quote Kaise Maio Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11-Sep-2014 at 16:41
Ajuuraan Empire is the only Famous Empire in Somalia.

Generally, Somalia Population Is divided in to two great categories:

1. Ajuuraan

2. Ajhi
Abuu Hanan
Back to Top
 Post Reply Post Reply

Forum Jump Forum Permissions View Drop Down

Bulletin Board Software by Web Wiz Forums® version 9.56a [Free Express Edition]
Copyright ©2001-2009 Web Wiz

This page was generated in 0.078 seconds.