The Archaeology and History of Slavery in South Sudan in the Nineteenth Century


in The Frontiers of the Ottoman World

Published by British Academy

Published in print December 2009 | ISBN: 9780197264423
Published online February 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191734793 | DOI:

Series: Proceedings of the British Academy

The Archaeology and History of Slavery in South Sudan in the Nineteenth Century

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This chapter presents a synopsis of the historical evidence concerning the expansion of slavery and the trade in ivory during the Turco-Egyptian era in the Sudan between 1820 and 1881, and a description of the results of recent and very preliminary archaeological investigations at three sites associated with this trade around the town of Rumbek in Lakes State, South Sudan. The chapter begins with a brief review of the establishment of Ottoman rule in Egypt, before moving on to consider the broader geopolitical forces that gave rise to the decision by the Egyptian Khedive, Mehmed Ali, to invade Sinnar, Kordofan and adjacent areas of northern Sudan. It then discusses the economic consequences and legal changes following the establishment of Turco-Egyptian rule that helped create the conditions for the expansion of slaving expeditions into southern Sudan and the establishment of a series of fortified camps or zaribas in these areas.

Keywords: Ottoman Egypt; slavery; Turco-Egyptian era; South Sudan; Mehmed Al; zaribas; ivory trade

Chapter.  12155 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Asian History

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