Kingdom of Kongo
The Kingdom of Kongo was a kingdom located in west central Africa in present-day northern Angola, the western portion of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the Republic of the Congo as well as the southernmost part of Gabon. At its greatest extent it reached from the Atlantic Ocean in the west to the Kwango River in the east, from the Congo River in the north to the Kwanza River in the south; the kingdom consisted of several core provinces ruled by the Manikongo, the Portuguese version of the Kongo title Mwene Kongo, meaning "lord or ruler of the Kongo kingdom", but its sphere of influence extended to neighbouring kingdoms, such as Ngoyo, Loango and Matamba, the last two located in what is Angola today. From c. 1390 to 1857 it was an independent state. From 1857 to 1914 it functioned as a vassal state of the Kingdom of Portugal. In 1914, following the Portuguese suppression of a Kongo revolt, Portugal abolished the titular monarchy; the remaining territories of the kingdom were assimilated into the colony of Angola and the Protectorate of Cabinda respectively.
The modern-day Bundu dia Kongo sect favors reviving the kingdom through secession from Angola, the Republic of the Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Gabon. Verbal traditions about the early history of the country were set in writing for the first time in the late 16th century, the most comprehensive were recorded in the mid-17th century, including those written by the Italian Capuchin missionary Giovanni Cavazzi da Montecuccolo. More detailed research in modern oral traditions conducted in the early 20th century by Redemptorist missionaries like Jean Cuvelier and Joseph de Munck do not appear to relate to the early period. According to Kongo tradition, the kingdom's origin lies in the large and not rich country of Mpemba Kasi located just south of modern-day Matadi in the Democratic Republic of Congo. A dynasty of rulers from this small polity built up its rule along the Kwilu valley, its members are buried in Nsi Kwilu, its capital. Traditions from the 17th century allude to this sacred burial ground.
According to the missionary Girolamo da Montesarchio, an Italian Capuchin who visited the area from 1650 to 1652, the site was so holy that looking upon it was deadly. Seventeenth-century subjects of Mpemba Kasi called their country "Mother of the King of Kongo" in respect of the territory's antiquity. At some point around 1375, Nimi a Nzima, ruler of Mpemba Kasi, made an alliance with Nsaku Lau, the ruler of the neighbouring Mbata Kingdom; this alliance guaranteed that each of the two allies would help ensure the succession of their ally's lineage in the other's territory. The first king of the Kingdom of Kongo Dya Ntotila was Lukeni lua Nimi; the name Nimi a Lukeni appeared in oral traditions and some modern historians, notably Jean Cuvelier, popularized it. Lukeni lua Nimi, or Nimi a Lukeni, became the founder of Kongo when he conquered the kingdom of the Mwene Kabunga, which lay on a mountain to his south, he transferred his rule to this mountain, the Mongo dia Kongo or "mountain of Kongo", made Mbanza Kongo, the town there, his capital.
Two centuries the Mwene Kabunga's descendants still symbolically challenged the conquest in an annual celebration. The rulers that followed Lukeni all claimed some form of relation to his kanda, or lineage and were known as the Kilukeni; the Kilukeni kanda or "house" as it was recorded in Portuguese documents, ruled Kongo unopposed until 1567. After the death of Nimi a Lukeni, his brother, Mbokani Mavinga, took over the throne and ruled until 1467, he had nine children. His rule saw an expansion of the Kingdom of Kongo to include the neighbouring state the Kingdom of Loango and other areas now encompassed by the current Republic of Congo; the Mwene Kongos gave the governorships to members of their family or its clients. As this centralization increased, the allied provinces lost influence until their powers were only symbolic, manifested in Mbata, once a co-kingdom, but by 1620 known by the title "Grandfather of the King of Kongo"; the high concentration of population around Mbanza Kongo and its outskirts played a critical role in the centralization of Kongo.
The capital was a densely settled area in an otherwise sparsely populated region where rural population densities did not exceed 5 persons per km2. Early Portuguese travelers described Mbanza Kongo as a large city, the size of the Portuguese town of Évora as it was in 1491. By the end of the sixteenth century, Kongo's population was close to half a million people in a core region of some 130,000 square kilometers. By the early seventeenth century the city and its hinterland had a population of around 100,000, or one out of every five inhabitants in the Kingdom; this concentration allowed resources and surplus foodstuffs to be available at the request of the king. This made the king overwhelmingly powerful and caused the kingdom to become centralized. By the time of the first recorded contact with the Europeans, the Kingdom of Kongo was a developed state at the center of an extensive trading network. Apart from natural resources and ivory, the country manufactured and traded copperware, ferrous metal goods, raffia cloth, pottery.
The Kongo people spoke in the Kikongo language. The eastern regions that part known as the Seven Kingdoms of Kongo dia Nlaza, were famous for the production of cloth. In 1483, the Portuguese explorer Diogo Cão sailed up the uncharted Congo River, finding Kongo v
An equator of a rotating spheroid is its zeroth circle of latitude. It is the imaginary line on the spheroid, equidistant from its poles, dividing it into northern and southern hemispheres. In other words, it is the intersection of the spheroid with the plane perpendicular to its axis of rotation and midway between its geographical poles. On Earth, the Equator is 21.3 % over land. Indonesia is the country straddling the greatest length of the equatorial line across both land and sea; the name is derived from medieval Latin word aequator, in the phrase circulus aequator diei et noctis, meaning ‘circle equalizing day and night’, from the Latin word aequare meaning ‘make equal’. The latitude of the Earth's equator is, by definition, 0° of arc; the Equator is one of the five notable circles of latitude on Earth. The Equator is the only line of latitude, a great circle — that is, one whose plane passes through the center of the globe; the plane of Earth's equator, when projected outwards to the celestial sphere, defines the celestial equator.
In the cycle of Earth's seasons, the equatorial plane runs through the Sun twice per year: on the equinoxes in March and September. To a person on Earth, the Sun appears to travel above the Equator at these times. Light rays from the Sun's center are perpendicular to Earth's surface at the point of solar noon on the Equator. Locations on the Equator experience the shortest sunrises and sunsets because the Sun's daily path is nearly perpendicular to the horizon for most of the year; the length of daylight is constant throughout the year. Earth bulges at the Equator. Sites near the Equator, such as the Guiana Space Centre in Kourou, French Guiana, are good locations for spaceports as they have a faster rotational speed than other latitudes. Since Earth rotates eastward, spacecraft must be launched eastward to take advantage of this Earth-boost of speed; the precise location of the Equator is not fixed. This effect must be accounted for in detailed geophysical measurements; the International Association of Geodesy and the International Astronomical Union have chosen to use an equatorial radius of 6,378.1366 kilometres.
This equatorial radius is in the 2003 and 2010 IERS Conventions. It is the equatorial radius used for the IERS 2003 ellipsoid. If it were circular, the length of the Equator would be 2π times the radius, namely 40,075.0142 kilometres. The GRS 80 as approved and adopted by the IUGG at its Canberra, Australia meeting of 1979 has an equatorial radius of 6,378.137 kilometres. The WGS 84, a standard for use in cartography and satellite navigation including GPS has an equatorial radius of 6,378.137 kilometres. For both GRS 80 and WGS 84, this results in a length for the Equator of 40,075.0167 km. The geographical mile is defined as one arc-minute of the Equator, so it has different values depending on which radius is assumed. For example, by WSG-84, the distance is 1,855.3248 metres, while by IAU-2000, it is 1,855.3257 metres. This is a difference of less than one millimetre over the total distance; the earth is modeled as a sphere flattened 0.336% along its axis. This makes the Equator 0.16% longer than a meridian.
The IUGG standard meridian is, to the nearest millimetre, 40,007.862917 kilometres, one arc-minute of, 1,852.216 metres, explaining the SI standardization of the nautical mile as 1,852 metres, more than 3 metres less than the geographical mile. The sea-level surface of the Earth is irregular, so the actual length of the Equator is not so easy to determine. Aviation Week and Space Technology on 9 October 1961 reported that measurements using the Transit IV-A satellite had shown the equatorial "diameter" from longitude 11° West to 169° East to be 1,000 feet greater than its "diameter" ninety degrees away; the Equator passes through the land of 11 countries. Starting at the Prime Meridian and heading eastwards, the Equator passes through: Despite its name, no part of Equatorial Guinea lies on the Equator. However, its island of Annobón is 155 km south of the Equator, the rest of the country lies to the north. Seasons result from the tilt of the Earth's axis compared to the plane of its revolution around the Sun.
Throughout the year the northern and southern hemispheres are alternately turned either toward or away from the sun depending on Earth's position in its orbit. The hemisphere turned toward the sun receives more sunlight and is in summer, while the other hemisphere receives less sun and is in winter. At the equinoxes, the Earth's axis
Gabon the Gabonese Republic, is a country on the west coast of Central Africa. Located on the equator, Gabon is bordered by Equatorial Guinea to the northwest, Cameroon to the north, the Republic of the Congo on the east and south, the Gulf of Guinea to the west, it has an area of nearly 270,000 square kilometres and its population is estimated at 2 million people. Its capital and largest city is Libreville. Since its independence from France in 1960, the sovereign state of Gabon has had three presidents. In the early 1990s, Gabon introduced a multi-party system and a new democratic constitution that allowed for a more transparent electoral process and reformed many governmental institutions. Abundant petroleum and foreign private investment have helped make Gabon one of the most prosperous countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, with the 7th highest HDI and the fourth highest GDP per capita in the region. GDP grew by more than 6% per year from 2010 to 2012. However, because of inequality in income distribution, a significant proportion of the population remains poor.
Gabon's name originates from gabão, Portuguese for "cloak", the shape of the estuary of the Komo River by Libreville. The earliest inhabitants of the area were Pygmy peoples, they were replaced and absorbed by Bantu tribes as they migrated. In the 15th century, the first Europeans arrived. By the 18th century, a Myeni speaking kingdom known as Orungu formed in Gabon. On February 10, 1722, Bartholomew Roberts, a Welsh pirate known as Black Bart, died at sea off Cape Lopez, he raided ships off the Americas and West Africa from 1719 to 1722. French explorer Pierre Savorgnan de Brazza led his first mission to the Gabon-Congo area in 1875, he founded the town of Franceville, was colonial governor. Several Bantu groups lived in the area, now Gabon when France occupied it in 1885. In 1910, Gabon became one of the four territories of French Equatorial Africa, a federation that survived until 1959. In World War II, the Allies invaded Gabon in order to overthrow the pro-Vichy France colonial administration.
The territories of French Equatorial Africa became independent on August 17, 1960. The first president of Gabon, elected in 1961, was Léon M'ba, with Omar Bongo Ondimba as his vice president. After M'ba's accession to power, the press was suppressed, political demonstrations banned, freedom of expression curtailed, other political parties excluded from power, the Constitution changed along French lines to vest power in the Presidency, a post that M'ba assumed himself. However, when M'ba dissolved the National Assembly in January 1964 to institute one-party rule, an army coup sought to oust him from power and restore parliamentary democracy. French paratroopers flew in within 24 hours to restore M'ba to power. After a few days of fighting, the coup ended and the opposition was imprisoned, despite widespread protests and riots. French soldiers still remain in the Camp de Gaulle on the outskirts of Gabon's capital to this day; when M'Ba died in 1967, Bongo replaced him as president. In March 1968, Bongo declared Gabon a one-party state by dissolving the BDG and establishing a new party—the Parti Democratique Gabonais.
He invited all Gabonese, regardless of previous political affiliation. Bongo sought to forge a single national movement in support of the government's development policies, using the PDG as a tool to submerge the regional and tribal rivalries that had divided Gabonese politics in the past. Bongo was elected President in February 1975. Bongo was November 1986 to 7-year terms. In early 1990 economic discontent and a desire for political liberalization provoked violent demonstrations and strikes by students and workers. In response to grievances by workers, Bongo negotiated with them on a sector-by-sector basis, making significant wage concessions. In addition, he promised to open up the PDG and to organize a national political conference in March–April 1990 to discuss Gabon's future political system; the PDG and 74 political organizations attended the conference. Participants divided into two loose coalitions, the ruling PDG and its allies, the United Front of Opposition Associations and Parties, consisting of the breakaway Morena Fundamental and the Gabonese Progress Party.
The April 1990 conference approved sweeping political reforms, including creation of a national Senate, decentralization of the budgetary process, freedom of assembly and press, cancellation of an exit visa requirement. In an attempt to guide the political system's transformation to multiparty democracy, Bongo resigned as PDG chairman and created a transitional government headed by a new Prime Minister, Casimir Oye-Mba; the Gabonese Social Democratic Grouping, as the resulting government was called, was smaller than the previous government and included representatives from several opposition parties in its cabinet. The RSDG drafted a provisional constitution in May 1990 that provided a basic bill of rights and an independent judiciary but retained strong executive powers for the president. After further review by a constitutional committee and the National Assembly, this document came into force in March 1991. Opposition to the PDG continued after the April 1990 conference, in September 1990, two coup d'état attempts were uncovered and aborted.
Despite anti-government demonstrations after the untimely death of an opposition leader, the first multiparty National Assembly elections in almo
Henricus Martellus Germanus
Henricus Martellus Germanus is the latinized name of Heinrich Hammer, a geographer and cartographer from Nuremberg who lived and worked in Florence from 1480 to 1496. Between around 1489 and 1491, he produced at least one world map, remarkably similar to the terrestrial globe produced by Martin Behaim around 1492, the Erdapfel. Both show novel adaptions of the existing Ptolemaic model, opening a passage south of Africa and creating an enormous new peninsula east of the Golden Chersonese. Both derive from maps created around 1485 in Lisbon by Bartolomeo Columbus; the only extant manuscript world map, measuring 201 by 122 centimetres in size, was rediscovered in the 1960s and donated to Yale's Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library. An inscription in the lower left corner states: "Although Strabo and Ptolemy and the majority of the ancients were most assiduous in describing the world we, bring together in this picture and show in their true places the new knowledge that escaped their diligence and remained unknown to them".
Martellus’ map served as an inspiration for the Waldseemüller map of 1507. The overall layout was similar, Martin Waldseemüller used the same projection as Martellus, the pseudo-cordiform projection. Both cartographers added decorative wind-heads in the borders of their maps, both took advantage of the extra space in the lower corners of the maps created by the swooping lines of the projection to add text blocks in those corners; the shape of northern Africa is the same on both maps, that is, it is Ptolemaic with a sharp northwestern corner. The shape of eastern Asia is similar on the two maps, with a huge peninsula jutting southwestward into the Indian Ocean, Japan is in the same position on the two maps, at the eastern edge. Martellus produced an Insularium Illustratum of which four manuscripts are extant, plus one draft in Biblioteca Laurentiana, it contains an illustrated description of islands of the Aegean Sea copied from a previous work by Cristoforo Buondelmonti, plus maps from other islands, several regional maps and a world map.
He has been identified with an Arrigho di Federigho who authored the first translation into German of Bocaccio's Decamerone. According to this theory, the surname Martellus would come from the Martelli family, to which Henricus / Arrigho was linked. Arthur Davies: Behaim and Columbus, The Geographical Journal, Vol. 143, No. 3, pp. 451-459 Alexander O. Vietor: A Pre-Columbian Map of the World, Circa 1489, Imago Mundi, Vol. 17, 1963, pp. 95-96 An essay on the world maps created by Henricus Martellus Germanus Recent findings via multispectral imaging: presentation by Chet van Duzer, Hidden secrets of Yale’s 1491 world map revealed via multispectral imaging press release by Yale University
Portugal the Portuguese Republic, is a country located on the Iberian Peninsula in southwestern Europe. It is the westernmost sovereign state of mainland Europe, being bordered to the west and south by the Atlantic Ocean and to the north and east by Spain, its territory includes the Atlantic archipelagos of the Azores and Madeira, both autonomous regions with their own regional governments. Portugal is the oldest state on the Iberian Peninsula and one of the oldest in Europe, its territory having been continuously settled and fought over since prehistoric times; the pre-Celtic people, Celts and Romans were followed by the invasions of the Visigoths and Suebi Germanic peoples. Portugal as a country was established during the Christian Reconquista against the Moors who had invaded the Iberian Peninsula in 711 AD. Founded in 868, the County of Portugal gained prominence after the Battle of São Mamede in 1128; the Kingdom of Portugal was proclaimed following the Battle of Ourique in 1139, independence from León was recognised by the Treaty of Zamora in 1143.
In the 15th and 16th centuries, Portugal established the first global empire, becoming one of the world's major economic and military powers. During this period, today referred to as the Age of Discovery, Portuguese explorers pioneered maritime exploration, notably under royal patronage of Prince Henry the Navigator and King John II, with such notable voyages as Bartolomeu Dias' sailing beyond the Cape of Good Hope, Vasco da Gama's discovery of the sea route to India and the European discovery of Brazil. During this time Portugal monopolized the spice trade, divided the world into hemispheres of dominion with Castille, the empire expanded with military campaigns in Asia. However, events such as the 1755 Lisbon earthquake, the country's occupation during the Napoleonic Wars, the independence of Brazil, a late industrialization compared to other European powers, erased to a great extent Portugal's prior opulence. After the 1910 revolution deposed the monarchy, the democratic but unstable Portuguese First Republic was established being superseded by the Estado Novo right-wing authoritarian regime.
Democracy was restored after the Carnation Revolution in 1974. Shortly after, independence was granted to all its overseas territories; the handover of Macau to China in 1999 marked the end of what can be considered the longest-lived colonial empire. Portugal has left a profound cultural and architectural influence across the globe, a legacy of around 250 million Portuguese speakers, many Portuguese-based creoles, it is a developed country with a high-income advanced economy and high living standards. Additionally, it is placed in rankings of moral freedom, democracy, press freedom, social progress, LGBT rights. A member of the United Nations and the European Union, Portugal was one of the founding members of NATO, the eurozone, the OECD, the Community of Portuguese Language Countries; the word Portugal derives from the Roman-Celtic place name Portus Cale. Portus, the Latin word for port or harbour, Cala or Cailleach was the name of a Celtic goddess – in Scotland she is known as Beira – and the name of an early settlement located at the mouth of the Douro River which flows into the Atlantic Ocean in the north of what is now Portugal.
At the time the land of a specific people was named after its deity. Those names are the origins of the - gal in Galicia. Incidentally, the meaning of Cale or Calle is a derivation of the Celtic word for port which would confirm old links to pre-Roman, Celtic languages which compare to today's Irish caladh or Scottish cala, both meaning port; some French scholars believe it may have come from ` Portus Gallus', the port of the Celts. Around 200 BC, the Romans took the Iberian Peninsula from the Carthaginians during the Second Punic War, in the process conquered Cale and renamed it Portus Cale incorporating it to the province of Gaellicia with capital in Bracara Augusta. During the Middle Ages, the region around Portus Cale became known by the Suebi and Visigoths as Portucale; the name Portucale evolved into Portugale during the 7th and 8th centuries, by the 9th century, that term was used extensively to refer to the region between the rivers Douro and Minho. By the 11th and 12th centuries, Portugallia or Portvgalliae was referred to as Portugal.
The early history of Portugal is shared with the rest of the Iberian Peninsula located in South Western Europe. The name of Portugal derives from the joined Romano-Celtic name Portus Cale; the region was settled by Pre-Celts and Celts, giving origin to peoples like the Gallaeci, Lusitanians and Cynetes, visited by Phoenicians, Ancient Greeks and Carthaginians, incorporated in the Roman Republic dominions as Lusitania and part of Gallaecia, after 45 BC until 298 AD. The region of present-day Portugal was inhabited by Neanderthals and by Homo sapiens, who roamed the border-less region of the northern Iberian peninsula; these were subsistence societies that, although they did not establish prosperous settlements, did form organized societies. Neolithic Portugal experimented with domestication of herding animals, the raising of some cereal crops and fluvial or marine fishing, it is believed by some scholars that early in the first millennium BC, several waves of Celts invaded Portugal from Central Europe and inter-married with the local populations, forming differe
Cape Cross is a small headland in the South Atlantic in Skeleton Coast, western Namibia, on the C34 highway some 60 kilometres north of Hentiesbaai and 120 km north of Swakopmund on the west coast of Namibia. The Portuguese navigator and explorer Diogo Cão was in 1484 ordered by King João II, as part of the search for a sea route to India and the Spice Islands, to advance south into undiscovered regions along the west coast of Africa. While doing so, he was to choose some salient points and claim them for Portugal by setting up on each a stone cross called padrão. During his first voyage, thought to have taken place in 1482, he reached a place he called Monte Negro, now called Cabo de Santa Maria 150 km southwest of today’s Benguela, Angola. During his second voyage, in 1484–1486, Cão reached Cape Cross in January 1486, being the first European to visit this area. During this voyage he proceeded c. 1,400 km farther than during the first one. He is known to have erected two padrãos in the areas beyond his first voyage, one in Monte Negro, the second at Cape Cross.
The current name of the place is derived from this padrão. What can today be found at Cape Cross are two replicas of that first cross. Cão’s first expedition took place only six years, the second expedition’s end only two years before Bartholomeu Dias rounded the Cape of Good Hope as the first European explorer in 1488; the original Cape Cross padrão was removed in 1893 by Corvette captain Gottlieb Becker, commander of the SMS Falke of the German Navy, taken to Berlin. A simple wooden cross was put in its place; the wooden cross was replaced two years by a stone replica. At the end of the 20th century, thanks to private donations, another cross, more similar to the original one, was erected at Cape Cross, thus there are now two crosses there; the inscription on the padrão reads, in English translation: Today Cape Cross is a protected area owned by the government of Namibia under the name Cape Cross Seal Reserve. The reserve is the home of one of the largest colonies of Cape fur seals in the world.
Cape Cross is one of two main sites in Namibia where seals are culled for selling their hides and for protecting the fish stock. The economic impact of seals on the fish resources is controversial: While a government-initiated study found that seal colonies consume more fish than the entire fishing industry can catch, animal protection society Seal Alert South Africa estimated less than 0.3% losses to commercial fisheries. Republic of Namibia Ministry of Environment and Tourism: Cape Cross Seal Reserve The Seals of Nam