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A Reappraisal of the History of the Rhodesian Iron Age Up to the Fifteenth Century

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  22 January 2009


The suggestions put forward in this paper may be summarized as follows. The linguistic, cultural and to some extent physical ancestors of the modern Bantu people south of the Zambezi, including the Shona, arrived in Rhodesia in the early part of the first millennium a.d. The B1 culture was not introduced by Shona migrants arriving in the eleventh century, but was a local development of the already existing Shona Iron Age A, attributable perhaps to prosperity gained from the gold trade. The B1 culture should not in fact be regarded as a separate culture from the A, that later fused with it, but as a variant of it, which because of the power and influence of those who developed and practised it eventually spread over a large area and became a common factor in the various local Shona cultures that had diverged, and continued to diverge, in the course of time.

Research Article
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1966

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