to Glory: West Africa
The gold of Ghana came from Ghiarou near the source of the
Senegal river, about eighteen days journey from the capital.
All the gold nuggets belonged to the king, although the gold
dust was left to the people.
The king levied taxes on all salt that came into the country,
as well as all the salt that left. Copper exports were also
taxed, which made the king very rich and powerful. El Bekri
reported that the king of Ghana owned a nugget of gold that
was so big that he could tie his horse to it.
Almoravids devastated Ghana, by destrying the power of the
kings. They looted the country and turned people into semi-slaves
through heavy taxes. Many of them eventually accepted Islam
to avoid or escape these burdens.
have excavated several sites and believe that the ancient
capital was most likely from a place called Kumbi Saleh, where
a city of 30,000 people once lived.
1 2 3