All Saints Secondary School Oyigbo, Rivers State.
Week seven topic; Inter- relationships of some Centers of Civilization in Pre-colonial Nigeria.
The relationship between Ife and Benin empire in the pre-colonial era.
Ife people and the good people of Benin empire related very well in the following areas before the coming of the Europeans.
- Traditional relationship
- Economy and trade relations.
- Cordial relationship.
The marriage between Oranmiyan and a daughter of a noble Benin chief sealed a permanent relationship between Ife kingdom and Benin empire. From Eweka 1, the son of Oranmiyan and the first Oba of Benin, to the present Oba of Benin, the lineage and linkage of Ife had remained unbroken.The Oba of Benin as well as the Oni of Ife have the Are’ which is a symbol of authority and of descendancy from Oduduwa of Ile Ife.
- Traditional Relationship:
Through traditional affinity, Benin came in contact with some cultural practices of Ife, administrative patterns and some religious beliefs. To maintain this relationship, the severed head of a dead Benin Monarch (Oba) was carried to Ife for burial. Oba of Benin was among those who got a share of the disposable personal effects of a dead Ooni of Ife, because he belongs to the Oduduwa dynasty or line of Kings.
- Economy and Trade Relations:
Benin and Ife had smooth trade relations. As powerful as Benin empire was, she never raided Ife kingdom. Despite the booming slave trade. They believed that Ife was considered”untouchable’’ by the virtue of the “ebi practice”.
The bronze art and technology which brought Benin empire into limelight was transmitted to Benin through Ife kingdom between 12th century and 14th centuries AD.
- Cordial Relationship:
The bond between Ife and Benin still exists. Benin relationship with Ife kingdom was very cordial. It gave birth to trans cultural integration, booming trade relations, inter-tribal marriages, peace accords and inter-ethnic assistance at various times. Ife has always played a fatherly role particularly as regards the recognition of a new Oba, shown tolerance with a reigning Oba and respect for a dead Oba.
- Discuss the relationship between the Igbos and the Niger Delta city states in the pre-colonial era.
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