Aliens in Nigeria
Africans have been migrating through out the continent, including Nigeria, long before there was even written record. Because of this, there has always been an extensive amount of inter-mingling between various ethnic groups, making it difficult to actually trace back who came from where. Aside from this amalgamation, there has been a huge impact on the peoples of Nigeria by outside forces. In particular, three major groups that had a major impact were Muslim merchants from across the Sahara, British slave traders and eventual colonizers, and the French and British Christian missionaries. The combination of these three groups has had both an economic and cultural impact on Nigeria that is still present today. External penetration of Nigeria started as early as the 9th century AD when Muslim merchants from western Sudan, Maghreb, Tripolitania and Egypt started traveling across the Sahara with camel caravans in search of trade. Over the course of the next six centuries, Islam became accepted widely in the north, especially among the Hausa and Fulani, and not only as a religion. It also imposed a central government, segregated the sexes, influenced language and script, and established a hierarchical class system that was not there beforehand. Islam did not spread south because of the dense tropical forest that divides Nigeria into north and south. This also caused the two regions to "develop" at different rates because while the south was still alien to Europeans, the north was expanding culturally and economically because of its deep involvement with the trans-Sahara trade routes. The peoples of the south remained untouched by Europeans until the 1470's when Portuguese explorers, under the inspiration and guidance of Henry the Navigator, arrived and traded spirits, cloth, guns and gunpowder for slaves. The Portuguese did not really have much of a cultural effect on the indigenous people (besides the slowly diminishing population)....
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