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Had lots of Salt, used it to trade, home to Sankore University, Jingaray Ber University and Sidi Yahya University

Sankore University

offered degrees in science, theology, astronomy, medicine, literature, and Islamic law. 10 years of studying


Soninke clans, who specialised in trade, Islamic scholarship and law


Largest salt mine, located in desert region of northern Mali.


Capital of the Songhai Empire, important commercial centre for the trans-Saharan trade

Kingdom of Ghana

Capital is Koumbi Saleh, Grew rich from the Trans-Saharan trade, especially in gold and salt. Spoke Soninke and Mande.

Kingdom of Mali

Founded by Sundiata Keita. Renowned for the wealth of owners. Most famous is Mansa Musa I. Great cultural influences on West Africa

Kingdom of Songhai

Songhai was the last and final great empire of West Africa. a very big trading city back then where many people would trade things like gold for salt

Geographic determinism

the idea that a people's lifestyle and culture will be affected by interaction with the surrounding geography and climate

Sahara Desert

the largest desert in the world, covering most of northern Africa

Senegal River

River that flows through several West Africa countries and form the border between Mauritania and Senegal.

Niger River

located in West Africa, its rich soil gave rise to several civilizations; it also helped unite the region by enabling merchants and travelers to spread goods and ideas up and down the river


a kingdom (constitutional monarchy) in northwestern Africa with a largely Muslim population

Mansa Musa

Ruler of Mali (r. 1312-1337). His pilgrimage through Egypt to Mecca in 1324-1325 established the empire's reputation for wealth in the Mediterranean world.

Askia Mohammed Toure

An Emperor of the Songhai empire, strengthened empire and made it the largest empire in Western Africa. Made Islam and integral part of the empire.

Ibn Battuta

Moroccan Muslim scholar, the most widely traveled individual of his time. He wrote a detailed account of his visits to Islamic lands from China to Spain and the western Sudan.

Al Saheli

A Spanish architect who showed the Africans a new building style and built mosques


A puritanical reformist movement among the Islamic Berber tribes of northern Africa; controlled gold trade across Sahara; conquered Ghana in 1076; moved southward against African kingdoms of the savanna and the westward into Spain

Islam and its impact on art, architecture, language etc

Introduced different types of art such as patterns, contributed largely to architecture, people started to learn Islamic

Five pillars of Islam

Declaration of faith, prayer, alms, fasting, and pilgrimage

Trade routes

Waterways, paths, and trails that traders used to move goods for exchange from one place to another.

Trans-Sahara trade route

This was the route that the first caravan of camels headed west into the Sahara Desert to begin trade from Eastern Africa to Western Africa


Pack animals that made cross-Sahara caravans possible


Main source of the Kingdom of Ghana's wealth, used to keep foods fresh


One of the main products traded in the Trans-Sahara trade route


a small and inadequate amount

Silent bartering

Traders used this kind of trading as means to exchange salt for gold because they could not speak eachother's languages.


based on or tracing descent through the male line


based on or tracing descent through the female line


something that causes an important event to happen

Turning point

an event marking a unique or important historical change of course or one on which important developments depend


the action of changing something


the property of a continuous and connected period of time


gradual improvement or growth or development


returning to a former state

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