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A Bantu kingdom founded c.1500, lying north of Lake Kisale in the Republic of Congo. The founders, the Balopwe clan, came from further north, and imposed their sovereignty over existing chiefdoms. Some of the Luba moved eastwards c.1600, and founded a kingdom among the Lunda; from there a large number of small chiefdoms proliferated stretching from eastern Angola to north‐eastern Zambia, and making previously existing chiefdoms their vassals. The largest was the kingdom of Mwata Yamvo; others were the Bemba in north‐eastern Zambia, Kazembe in the Luapula valley, and Kasanje in central Angola. They all paid tribute to the central kingdoms, but the organization was decentralized, and the kings served as settlers of disputes between communities. These were occupied not only by agriculture, but also in mining and trade in copper and salt against European goods obtained from the Portuguese. Kazembe was the richest and most important.

Subjects: World History — African Studies.

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