Kingdom of Baguirmi

Kingdom of Baguirmi

The Kingdom of Baguirmi, also known as the Baguirmi Sultanate (1522-1897), was an Islamic kingdom or sultanate that existed as an independent state during the 16th and 17th centuries southeast of Lake Chad in what is now the country of Chad. Baguirmi emerged to the southeast of the Kanem-Bornu Empire. The kingdom's first ruler was Mbang (king) Birni Besse. Later in his reign , the Bornu Empire conquered and made tributary the state. Under the reign of Abdullah IV (1568–1608), Islam was adopted, and the state became a sultanate, using judicial and administrative procedures. The title of Mbang was still used along with Sultan. Later, a palace and court were constructed in the capital city of Massenya. Baguirmi's political history was a function of its strength and unity in relation to its larger neighbors. Absorbed into Kanem-Bornu during the reign of Alooma, Baguirmi broke free later in the 1600s, only to be returned to tributary status in the mid-1700s. During periods of strength, the sultanate became imperialistic. It established control over small feudal kingdoms on its peripheries and entered into alliances with nearby nomadic peoples. Early in the 19th century, Baguirmi fell into decay and was threatened militarily by the nearby Ouaddai Kingdom. Although Baguirmi resisted, it accepted tributary status in order to obtain help from Ouaddai in putting down internal dissension. When Rabih az-Zubayr's forces burned Massenya in 1893, the twenty-fifth sultan, Abd ar Rahman Gwaranga, sought and received protectorate status from France in 1897.

The language of the state, Baguirmi, is still spoken today, with 44,761 speakers as of| 1993, primarily in the Chari Baguirmi region. The empire now exists as an informal entity in the department of Baguirmi, with its capital at Massenya. The rulers have the title "Mbang".

See also

* Rulers of Baguirmi
* History of Chad


*Lebeuf, Annie M.D. (1978) 'L'ancien royaume du Baguirmi' "Mondes et cultures", 38, 3, 437–443.
*N'Gare, Ahmed (1997) 'Le royaume du Baguirmi (XVe - XXe siècles)'. "Hemispheres", 11, 27–31.

loc - [ Chad]

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