191,192. The Ancient History of the Old Oyo Empire. There were two main reasons why the slave trade centred here: firstly it was one of the most densely populated areas of Africa reachable by the Europeans, and secondly, the Oyo Empire, and to an even greater extent the Kingdom of Dahomey, provided the necessary command infrastructures to organize the movement of slaves from the interior to the coast. Please help us create teaching materials on Mesopotamia (including several complete lessons with worksheets, activities, answers, essay questions, and more), which will be free to download for teachers all over the world. There are many myths and legends associated with the foundation of the Empire and the infiltration of Oduduwa into Ile-Ife. The Yoruba of Oyo went through an interregnum of 80 years as an exiled dynasty after its defeat by the Nupe. Retrieved from https://www.ancient.eu/Oyo_Empire/. Although archaeology has yet to discover concrete connections between the various successive states of what is today Nigeria, oral traditions, such as those in the Kingdom of Benin (13-19th century CE), located just to the east of Oyo, tell of a king of Ife who not only sent a prince to rule other areas of the region but also sent a mast… Culture is the totality of knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors shared by … Oyo rose to become the most important city state, ... A History of West Africa. Shillington, Kevin (2005). This second state became preeminent among all Yoruba states because of its favourable trading position, its natural resources, and the industry of its inhabitants. About 1774 they gave the throne to a king, Abiodun, who escaped from their control and used provincial forces to establish royal authority…. The motivation for this territorial expansion was to gain control of the lucrative regional trade routes along which salt, gold, and slaves were transported. From 1450 CE, the region prospered thanks to trade with such northern states as Hausaland (15-19th century CE) and, to the south, with Portuguese sailing vessels that plied the coast of West Africa. Below are the kings who had ruled one of the greatest empire in history. Linguistic evidence suggests that two waves of immigrants came into Yorubaland between 700 and 1000, the second settling at Oyo in the open country north of the Guinea forest. Dr Catel discusses the yoruba people, in particular the Oyo empire. c.1210– ORANYAN (Oranmiyan) Oyo-Ile was founded. The people created a government that established its power over a vast empire. The older traditions of the formerly dominant Ile-Ife kingdom are largely oral in nature. Get exclusive access to content from our 1768 First Edition with your subscription. Early in the 16th century Oyo was a minor state, powerless before its northern neighbours Borgu and Nupe—by whom it was conquered in 1550. The Oyo Empire might have achieved regional dominance but a much bigger power was slowly moving itself into position far to the north. https://www.ancient.eu/Oyo_Empire/. Oranmiyan founded the Oyo nation after he had established the bini dynasty, making him the first Alaafin (ruler) of the Oyo kingdom. Oranmiyan was the first king and the founder of the Oyo empire. The original kingdom, which was one of the complex of Yoruba states, was founded by Oranyan, an Ife prince, who is also believed to be the founder of the present Benin dynasty.5 Oyo started to be important towards the end … Ancient History Encyclopedia. It expanded from the 16th to the 18th century to become the Oyo Empire, reaching its peak (around 47570km2) in the middle of the 18th century. License. Its inhabitants are mostly of the Yoruba people, and its ceremonial ruler is the Alaafin of Oyo. Oyo empire was a yoruba empire covering distance over the southwest zone and the western half of northcentral zone of the today Nigeria. April 21, 2020 Skillz ARTICLES 0. Thus, until the collapse of the Oyo empire in the early 19th century, its dominance and commercial links with different parts of the world provided the basis for stability that protected Yorubaland from aggression or untoward experiences. Web. Please support Ancient History Encyclopedia Foundation. The same was true for the Ekiti who dwelt in the hills bordering the far northern stretch of Oyo lands. As with the states which prospered throughout the second millennium CE in the region, the Oyo Empire exploited local resources such as okra, yams, dates, palm oil, and fish. History Of The Oyo Empire - Culture (2) - Nairaland. The Oyo eventually succumbed to the expanding Islamic states to the north, and by the mid-19th century CE, the empire had disintegrated into small rival chiefdoms. Library of Congress Card #66-24317. Written by Mark Cartwright, published on 02 April 2020 under the following license: Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike. He was the son of Oduduwa. It has increased due to the excellent organizational and administrative capacities of the … Revised 2nd ed. THE OLD OYO EMPIRE From the 12th to the Late 18th century, the Oyo Empire grew to become the largest in West African. Oyo subjugated the kingdom of Dahomey in the west in two phases (1724–30, 1738–48) and traded with European merchants on the coast through the port of Ajase (now Porto-Novo). History of Africa. The consequence of this political decline for the Yoruba peoples was catastrophic as they had largely avoided being made slaves up to that point but were now by far the majority of those captured and shipped to the Americas until the slave trade ended here in the 1850s CE. Some Rights Reserved (2009-2020) under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike license unless otherwise noted. Interestingly, the Oyo also took cultural ideas, not just land from its rivals, notably adopting the prominent ancestor worship of the Nupe into their own religious practices. It's beginnings and structure. Naturally, other regional powers were also anxious to control trade routes, notably the Kingdom of Dahomey to the west. Oyo like all African states on the coast engage in the slave trade. The Oyo forged an empire thanks to their formidable cavalry units and so came to dominate other Yoruba peoples of the region. Oranmiyan was the first king and the founder of the Oyo empire. For only $5 per month you can become a member and support our mission to engage people with cultural heritage and to improve history education worldwide. The trade in humanity was so large that this part of Africa became known simply as the ‘Slave Coast’. The area of what is today the state of Nigeria became a British colony in 1861 CE, and in 1900 CE the protectorates of North and South Nigeria were formed. 24 Dec 2020. By signing up for this email, you are agreeing to news, offers, and information from Encyclopaedia Britannica. The Oyo Empire (1600 … Although archaeology has yet to discover concrete connections between the various successive states of what is today Nigeria, oral traditions, such as those in the Kingdom of Benin (13-19th century CE), located just to the east of Oyo, tell of a king of Ife who not only sent a prince to rule other areas of the region but also sent a master craftsman to spread his sculptural skills. Of the 14 Kakanfo so far, the tenures of three of them who were military commanders considerably impacted the history of, first, the Old Oyo Empire, and by extension, the rest of Yorubaland. Related Content by UN Photo/Harandane Dicko (CC BY-NC-ND). Law, Robin(1977). Consequently, the kingdom expanded to include areas of the southwest and, in the savannah to the north, it acquired territory from its neighbours the Borgu and Nupe states. Thank you! Abiodun’s neglect of everything but the economy weakened the army, and thus the means by which the central government maintained control. Cartwright, Mark. Oyo Empire(1600-1836) was a Yoruba empire, located in present day Nigeria and Benin. Oyo Empire and surrounding states, ca. The Old Oyo Empire was a vast and powerful force in the history of the Yoruba’s and Nigeria as a whole. The Ancient History Encyclopedia logo is a registered EU trademark. Oyo Empire. The Oyo benefitted most from the savannah regions, which facilitated easy movement and trade contacts with neighbouring states. "Oyo Empire." It stretched from parts of the Republic of Benin in the west to the southwest of the Federal Republic of Nigeria in the east. His special interests include pottery, architecture, world mythology and discovering the ideas that all civilizations share in common. This article was most recently revised and updated by, https://www.britannica.com/place/Oyo-empire, Oyo Kingdom - Children's Encyclopedia (Ages 8-11), Oyo Empire - Student Encyclopedia (Ages 11 and up). The Fulani pressure on the northern Yoruba states resulted in a southward population movement, which generated most of the civil wars that plagued Yorubaland throughout the 19th century and completed the disintegration of the Oyo Empire. The role, position, and relevance of the Alaafins in the colonial and postcolonial arrangement have equally proved remarkable in nation-building and … Early in the 16th century Oyo was a minor state, powerless before its northern neighbours Borgu and Nupe—by whom it was conquered in 1550. In oral traditions, the founder of the Oyo state was one Oranmiyan (aka Oranyan), son of Oduduwa, the founder of Ife. The Oyo territory came to encompass a real mix of environments with portions of rainforest, dry forest, savannah, and mangrove swamp. This situation and the loose control of vassal states meant that the Oyo Empire was really a house of cards awaiting the winds of change. This great Empire was established in the 15th Century by Oranmiyan, grandson of Oduduwa (known as the father of the Yoruba’s). Although the Oyo did not form many large towns of note, rulers were able to forge a small empire thanks to their fearsome cavalry and archers - both a result of their commercial tentacles reaching as far north as the trans-Saharan trade routes. The Nupe did conquer Old Oyo around 1535 CE and held onto it until the Oyo kings regained it around 1610 CE. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, pp. The decline was exacerbated by quarrels between the alaafin and his advisers; it continued throughout the 18th century and into the 19th, when Oyo began to lose control of its trade routes to the coast. The Oyo state of the yorubas was the earliest and the largest of the four great kingdoms of west Africa. Updates? The Oyo empire grew to be the largest of the Yoruba states, it rose through the outstanding organisational and administratyive skill of the Yoruba people. Articles from Britannica Encyclopedias for elementary and high school students. The '''Oyo Empire''' was a Yoruba empire of what is today Western and North central Nigeria. Oyo empire, Yoruba state north of Lagos, in present-day southwestern Nigeria, that dominated, during its apogee (1650–1750), most of the states between the Volta River in the west and the Niger River in the east. The Oyo king, the Alafin, had already been in conflict with both the state’s ruling council of elders, the Oyo Mesi, and the military leader, the bashorun (who also led the Oyo Mesi). The origin of Oyo Empire lies with Oranmiyan, the second prince of the Yoruba Kingdom of lle-lfe. There was constant friction throughout the 18th century CE between those who wanted peaceful trade and those who favoured military expansion. The power of Oyo was already growing by the end of the century, however, thanks to the alaafin Orompoto, who used the wealth derived from trade to establish a cavalry force and to maintain a trained army. Of the seven Ibarapas (Ibarapa mejeje), this abode cannot be ignored. By the 18th century CE half of the slaves taken from Africa came from the southern coast of West Africa, and the area controlled by the Oyo Empire, the Kingdom of Dahomey (c. 1600 - c. 1904 CE, modern Benin), and the Kingdom of Benin - the Bight of Benin - came to be widely known as simply the ‘Slave Coast’ (the ‘Gold Coast’, another lucrative trade hub, was further to the west). He was the son of Oduduwa. From its capital city at Oyo- Ile, this weak state in the early 1500s, had by 1550 conquered two neighboring … This license lets others remix, tweak, and build upon this content non-commercially, as long as they credit the author and license their new creations under the identical terms. ISBN 0-333-59957-8 . It began in the 1300s in the West African savannah north of the tropical forests where other Yoruba peoples lived. Oyo Empire. …century the northernmost Yoruba kingdom, Oyo, began to turn away from its traditional rivalry with the adjacent savanna kingdoms of Nupe and Borgu and to use its cavalry to assert control of the trade routes through the open country southwestward to the small Aja states on the coast in which…, At Oyo the traditional town chiefs, who commanded the army of the capital, converted the kings into puppets during the 1750s and ’60s. Wooden Figure, Oyo Empireby The British Museum (CC BY-NC-SA). Oranmiyan was a very brave and warlike king. This difference was not resolved until the alaafin Abiodun (reigned c. 1770–89) conquered his opponents in a bitter civil war and pursued a policy of economic development based primarily on the coastal trade with European merchants. The Oyo Empire was a Yoruba empire, and the Largest empire ever existed in West Africa, occupying most of what’s is today Southern Nigeria, expanding its territory to the nearby Republic of Benin. The Oyo Kingdom, as with other states of the Yoruba people in the southern coastal area of West Africa (modern Nigeria), claimed descent from an exiled king of Ife (11-15th century CE). History of Oyo Town and Oyo Empire Oyo is a city in Oyo State, Nigeria, founded as the capital of the Oyo Kingdom in the 1830s and known to its people as 'New Oyo' (Ọyọ Atiba) to distinguish it from the former capital to the north, 'Old Oyo' (Ọyọ-Ile), which had been deserted as a result of rumors of war. Ancient History Encyclopedia, 02 Apr 2020. Nairaland Forum / Nairaland / General / Culture / History Of The Oyo Empire (34116 Views) Lies About Oyo Empire / Yoruba's After The Fall Of Oyo Empire / Oyo Empire - 1300CE (2) Re: History Of The Oyo Empire by sammyjay3(m): 1:50pm On Jul 03, 2014; koastar: Where are you getting your history from? The Oyo Empire was the largest and the most powerful of the "forest states" of West Africa. The principal settlements of the Oyo were in and around Ife, the old capital of the Ife Kingdom, Old Oyo (aka Oyo Ile or Katunga), Kusu and Igboho. The 18th century CE had already seen an expansion of the northern Islamic states who had embarked on a holy war to spread their faith. Ogbomoso stands at the confluence of several historical juncture, from Yoruba to Nigeria. Oranmiyan made an agreement with his brother to launch a punitive raid on the northern neighbors for insulting their father Oba Oduduwa the first Ooni of lfe. Ancient History Encyclopedia Limited is a non-profit company registered in the United Kingdom. Oyo art in general displays a striking resemblance to that of Ife and Benin. Our latest articles delivered to your inbox, once a week: Our mission is to engage people with cultural heritage and to improve history education worldwide. After quarrelling … Gao & the Niger Riverby UN Photo/Harandane Dicko (CC BY-NC-ND). It was the most important and authoritative of all the early Yoruba principalities. Unlike other Yoruba states, which were located in the forest area, Oyo was situated in woodland savannah. Cartwright, M. (2020, April 02). Oyo was invaded by the newly risen Fon of Dahomey, and soon after 1800 it was captured by militant Fulani Muslims from Hausaland in the northeast. "Oyo Empire." Our editors will review what you’ve submitted and determine whether to revise the article. The two protectorates joined in 1914 CE, became a federation in 1954 CE, and finally gained independence in 1960 CE. By the late 16th century CE, the Portuguese were joined by the British, French, and Dutch, eager to obtain a slice of the lucrative regional trade. An impressive carved granite column from Ife stands 5.5 metres (18 ft.) tall and is known as the Opa Oranmiyan or ‘staff of Oranmiyan’. Despite an oral tradition that minimises the Oyo’s involvement in the slave trade, the Oyo Empire certainly used slaves within its own state structures - many officials in the administration and military, for example, were of slave origin - much more so than in other states in the region. Professor I.A. The result of this loss was a domino effect that saw the Oyo Empire breaking up into smaller states which led to further competition and warfare between them. 1700 (CC BY-SA 3.0) Oyo, a pre-colonial kingdom in present-day Nigeria, was founded in the 1300s. theories and related literature. Corrections? In return, the Oyo received European goods which they could use themselves or trade with neighbouring states. Culture, Politics, and Money Among the Yoruba, Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike. The little that is known is gleaned mostly from Yoruba legends and traditions. The authority on Yoruba history, Professor Jacob Festus Adeniyi … The old Oyo empire was a powerful force in the history of the yoruba race. The power of Oyo was already growing by the end of the century, however, thanks to the alaafin Orompoto, who used the wealth derived from trade to establish a cavalry force and to maintain a trained army. The Oyo Empire was a Yoruba empire, and the Largest empire ever existed in West Africa, occupying most of what’s is today Southern Nigeria, expanding its territory to the nearby Republic of Benin. The storm duly came in the 1820s CE in the form of the militant Muslim Fulani and, ultimately, the northern part of the Oyo Empire, Ilorin, was conquered to become the Fulani Emirate of Ilorin, an outpost of the great Sokoto Caliphate (1804-1903 CE). They re-established Oyo as more centralized and expansive than ever. Below are the kings who had ruled one of the greatest empire in history. According to traditions, Oyo derived from a great Yoruba ancestor and hero, Oduduwa, who likely migrated to Ile-Ife and whose son became the first alaafin (alafin), or ruler, of Oyo. (Oladayo, 2013). Oyo never encompassed all Yoruba-speaking people, but it was the most populous kingdom in Yoruba history. Let us know if you have suggestions to improve this article (requires login). He was said to have headed his brothers (other Yoruba kings) on an abortive expedition to the east to avenge the death of their father. Numerous educational institutions recommend us, including Oxford University and Michigan State University and University of Missouri. These invasions, reaching ever further south by the 19th century CE, caused severe disruption to Oyo’s trade and highlighted the inherent weakness in the Oyo political setup. … take a new look at the history of the Oyo Empire in the 18th century, and question the old view. Being in the savannah proved beneficial, as Oyo could use horses, which were unable to live farther south (due to the tsetse fly). Established in the 15th century, the Oyo Empire grew to become one of the largest West African states. History has it in profile that Alaafin Labisi collected tributes from faraway kingdoms of Dahomey, Popo and Ashanti even though his reign was very short, and more than half of the kingdoms and villages in Yorubaland (over 6000) fell under the political umbrella of … Oyo and Dahomey were at war between 1726 and 1730 CE, a conflict which the Oyo Empire eventually won. Books The origins Of Oyo lie with … Established by Oranmiyan of the Yoruba people of West Africa, Oyo quickly grew to become one of the most powerful states in the Yoruba-speaking region. Through this process of cultural transfer, the Oyo inherited a long cultural tradition which stretched right back the Nok Culture of ancient Nigeria (5th century BCE to 2nd century CE). Last modified April 02, 2020. Iron-smelting technology permitted the production of iron tools and weapons while traded goods included kola nuts, pepper, ivory, gold and slaves. Ancient History Encyclopedia. Please note that content linked from this page may have different licensing terms. The documented history of the Yoruba people begins with the Oyo Empire, which became dominant in the early 17th century. The first Oni of Ife was Oduduwa who gave birth to … The Oyo did not have everything their own way, however, as groups like the Ijesha inhabited forested areas where the Oyo cavalry could not be used effectively and the dangerous tsetse fly was present. Ancient History Encyclopedia Foundation is a non-profit organization. His successor, Alaafin Awole, inherited local revolts, an administration tenuously maintained by a complex system of public service, and a decline in the power of tributary chiefs. Mark is a history writer based in Italy. This was particularly true for the coastal areas which had a longstanding trade relationship with European sailing vessels. Oyo Empire (1600-1836) was a Yoruba empire, located in present day Nigeria and Benin. After 1730 CE, Dahomey consequently accepted the political authority of Oyo and the latter claimed some of the Dahomey coastal conquests, giving the empire its own direct access to the sea via the tributary state of Ajashe (aka Porto Novo). Both the Owu in the south and Ede to the southeast became vassal states of Oyo as the empire reached its peak from the first half of the 17th century CE, eventually conquering 13 rival kingdoms. According to Wikipedia, the Oyo Empire was the Empire of Yoruba of what is now Western, northern central Nigeria and the northern part of the Fon kingdom in the present Benin Republic.Oyo was founded in the 15th century and became one of the largest West African kingdoms (states). He holds an MA in Political Philosophy and is the Publishing Director at AHE. The major … History has it that the empire was created by Oranmiyan, the grandson of Oduduwa,. Doubleday:New York, pp. Cite This Work The Oyo Empire, with its capital at Old Oyo near the Niger River, prospered on regional trade and became a central facilitator in moving slaves from Africa’s interior to the coast and waiting European sailing ships. The Oyo Kingdom, as with other states of the Yoruba people in the southern coastal area of West Africa (modern Nigeria), claimed descent from an exiled king of Ife (11-15th century CE). This electronic bookcontains fifty (50) pages of History about Lanlate, one of the oldest, most noble and popular towns in Oyo State dating back to the era of the Old Oyo Empire” (Oyo-Ile). Although the Fulani intrusion into Ilorin largely contributed to the collapse of the. 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