QUEEN AMINA OF ZARIA: The Woman Who Led Men To War


Queen Amina Of Zaria

Amina of Zaria (1533-1610), normally known as the warrior queen, extended the domain of the Hausa individuals of north Africa to the biggest outskirts ever. Over 400 years after the fact, the legend of her persona turned into the model for a TV arrangement about an anecdotal warrior princess, called Xena.

Amina was the warrior sovereign of Zazzau (presently Zaria). She is referred to likewise as Amina Sarauniya Zazzau. She lived around 200 years before the foundation of the Sokoto-Caliphate alliance that administered Nigeria during the time of British provincial standard after the Islamic jahad (heavenly war) that overwhelmed the area in the nineteenth century. As indicated by most records, Queen Amina ruled for a long time at the turn of the sixteenth and seventeenth hundreds of years. Her area of Zazzau, a city-province of Hausaland, was in the long run renamed to Zaria and is the capital of the present-day emirate of Kaduna in Nigeria. Albeit numerous subtleties of her life remain to a great extent in question among history specialists, the way that she existed involves general acknowledgment, and she is ventured to have been a Moslem ruler. Quite a bit of what is known about Queen Amina depends on data related in the Kano Chronicles,a interpretation by Muhammed Bellow of pre-pilgrim African custom situated to some extent on unknown Hausa works. Different subtleties were pulled from the oral conventions of Nigeria. Therefore, the memory of Queen Amina expected amazing extents in her local Hausaland and past. The degree of her military ability and her presentation in fight was expanded by legend and stays muddled.

The rule of Amina happened when the city-province of Zazzau was arranged at the junction of three significant exchange passageways of northern Africa, interfacing the district of the Sahara with the remote markets of the southern woodland lands and the western Sudan. It was the ascent and fall of the amazing and progressively prevailing Songhai (var. Songhay) individuals and the subsequent rivalry for control of exchange courses that induced nonstop warring among the Hausa individuals and the neighboring settlements during the fifteenth and sixteenth hundreds of years. It was not until later that a decision game plan between the Hausa and the Fulani individuals eventually carried an enduring harmony to the area and made due into the pilgrim period of the nineteenth century.

Heir Apparent

Amina was the twenty-fourth habe, as the leaders of Zazzau were called. She is accepted to have been the granddaughter of King Zazzau Nohir. Theory proposes that she was conceived at some point during his rule, around 1533. This hypothesis loans trustworthiness to the conviction that Amina ruled Zazzau toward the finish of the sixteenth century. The residents of Hausaland around then showed propelled abilities in the mechanical crafts of tanning, weaving, and metalworking—as opposed to the occupants of the neighboring domains and encompassing societies, where horticulture remained the prevailing movement. The Hausa social progression, subsequently, was bound less unbendingly in the social standings of convention, which depended on inherited elements.


Queen Amina of zaria was brought into the world the oldest of three regal kin. She was 16 years of age when her honorable parent, the amazing Bakwa of Turunku (var. Barkwa Turunda), acquired the seat of Zazzau. Recorded records of Bakwa, the twenty-second habe of Zazzau, differ with respect to whether Bakwa was Amina’s dad or mom. In spite of the fact that the rule of Bakwa was known for harmony and success, the historical backdrop of the Hausa individuals was regardless described by military battles to build business. During the years between 1200-1700 Hausaland was, truth be told, loaded with warring gatherings. These plummeted into neighboring domains that were occupied by the Jukun and the Nupe toward the south, with an end goal to control exchange and to extend the Hausa people group into progressively alluring environs. The Hausa, thus, were vanquished irregularly during those years by different people groups. The Mali, Fulani, and Bornu were among the aggressors in these conflicts. During the rule of Bakwa, the teenaged Amina involved herself in sharpening her fight aptitudes, under the direction of the officers of the Zazzau military.

Similar to the custom of the district, the standard of Zazzau tumbled to Amina’s sibling, Karama, upon the passing of Bakwa in 1566. In spite of the fact that Karama was the more youthful of the two, it was the male beneficiary who outweighed everything else in rising the seat. The third kin, a sister named Zaria, in the long run fled the area. When that Amina expected the seat, following the demise of her sibling in the tenth year of his standard, she had developed into a furious warrior and had earned the regard of the Zazzau military. Amina, actually, settled her strength as the leader of the Zazzau mounted force even before she came to run the city-state.

Exploits in Battle

Queen Amina Of Zaria

Inside a quarter of a year of acquiring the seat, Queen Amina set out on what was to be the first in a continuous arrangement of military commitment related with her standard. She remained in order of a massive military band and by and by led the rangers of Zazzau through a progressing arrangement of crusades, pursuing fight ceaselessly over the span of her power. She spent the span of her 34-year reign in military animosity. Despite the fact that the military battles of Amina were portrayed as endeavors to guarantee safe entry for Zazzau and other Hausa merchants all through the Saharan locale, the training demonstrated powerful in fundamentally growing the constraints of Zazzau region to the biggest limits previously and since. African writer, P. J. M. McEwan cited the Kano Chronicles, which expressed that Amina, “vanquished all the towns to the extent Kwararafa [to the north] and Nupe [in the south].” According to all signs, she came to rule a significant part of the district known as Hausaland and past, all through a zone called Kasashen Bauchi, before the settlement of the supposed Gwandarawa Hausas of Kano in the mid 1600s. Kasashen Bauchi in present day terms contains the center belt of Nigeria. Notwithstanding Zazzau, the city-conditions of focal Hausaland included Rano, Kano, Daura, Gobir, and Katsina. At once, Amina commanded the whole region, alongside the related exchange courses associating the western Sudan with Egypt on the east and Mali in the north. With regards to the custom of the occasions, she gathered tributes of kola nuts and male slaves from her subject urban areas. Additionally, just like the custom of the Hausa individuals, Amina constructed dividers around the places to stay of the domains that she prevailed. A portion of the dividers made due into current occasions; along these lines her inheritance stayed dug in both the way of life and scene of her local Hausa city-states.


Some have recommended that a neighboring Hausa lord, named Sarkin Kanajeji, held Amina at a genuine drawback in pursuing fight against his military, on the grounds that Kanajeji’s officers wore iron head protectors for assurance. Others, be that as it may, have acknowledged Amina for the presentation of metal protection, including the iron caps and junk mail. It has been additionally recommended that she was answerable for the acquaintance of the new covering with the Hausa city-province of Kano. Notwithstanding its inception, the development of defensive protection showed up in Hausaland during the time of Amina. Since the Hausa of Zazzau were well skilled in the metalworking creates, it isn’t outlandish to deduce that Amina’s military was all around ensured by body protection.

A few students of history have acknowledged Amina for starting the Hausa practice of building the military camps behind stronghold dividers. A 15-kilometer divider encompassing the current city of Zaria goes back to Amina and is known as ganuwar Amina(Amina’s wall). Furthermore, a particular arrangement of dividers wind all through the field in the regions of the antiquated city-conditions of Hausaland. These came to be called Amina’s dividers to the remainder of the world, despite the fact that not the entirety of the dividers were worked during the rule of Amina.

Clashing Theories and Legend

Queen Amina Of Zaria

Data about the historical backdrop of Hausaland during the period of Amina is scrappy. Remote guests who traveled to Africa during the eighteenth and nineteenth hundreds of years gathered a significant number of the recorded records of those occasions. Other data was accumulated from the oral customs of the relatives of the early Hausa individuals.
Students of history J. F. Ajayi and Michael Crowder proposed that Amina lived in the fifteenth century as opposed to the sixteenth century. Ajayi and Crowder credit their decision to data found in Bellow’s Chronicle. The annals, which are accepted to depict the historical backdrop of Africa with some exactness, date Amina back to the hour of Sarki (ruler) Dauda whose father was accepted to have ruled from 1421 until 1438. In such manner there might be some disarray with the rule of Da’ud, champion of Macina, who ruled from 1549 until 1582. Ajayi proposed that Hausaland experienced frantically extreme animosity from Songhai toward the west during the sixteenth century, and it might be impossible that the expansionist approaches of Amina prevailed at such a troublesome time. Similarly reports that Amina gathered tribute from Bornu might be unrealistic with regards to the sixteenth century, as Zaria and numerous other Hausa city-states had, at that point, tumbled to the control of Songhai and had experienced further animosity Bornu toward the east. Such mastery by Songhai and Bornu, whenever delineated with exactness, block the likelihood that the Hausa accomplished broad control during the rule of Amina, if for sure she inhabited the finish of the sixteenth century.

The shortage of realities joined with the importance of the successes of Amina have characterized an unbelievable persona for the warrior queen of Nigeria. According to oral tradition, Amina took a new husband from the legions of vanquished foes after every battle. After spending one night with the Zazzau queen, each man was slain. Additionally, it is common belief that Amina died during a military campaign at Atagara near Bida in Nigeria. In the twentieth century the memory of Amina came to represent the spirit and strength of womanhood. For her exploits she earned the epithet of Amina, Yar Bakwa ta san rana (Amina, daughter of Nikatau, a woman as capable as a man).

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