Foundations of an African Civilisation
Title Details

304 Pages

21.6 x 14 cm

52 b/w. 35 line. Illustrations

Series: Eastern Africa Series

Imprint: James Currey

Foundations of an African Civilisation

Aksum and the northern Horn, 1000 BC - AD 1300

by David W. Phillipson

  • Description
  • Contents
  • Reviews
A single coherent narrative of Aksumite civilisation revealing the roots of medieval Christian Ethiopia.
This well-illustrated book provides an up-to-date survey of a key period in the history of northern Ethiopia and south-central Eritrea. It is accessible to the general reader, but its comprehensive references and guidance to controversies and research needs will render it invaluable to specialists and students. It considers how the region's literate communities arose and flourished during the last millennium BC, giving rise to the Aksumite civilisation whose achievements and intercontinental significance are increasingly recognised, and which formed an integral but often neglected component of the Christian world in Late Antiquity. Aksum is now seen as the ancestor of the region'smedieval Christian kingdom whose churches and associated art continue to attract many visitors to Ethiopia.

David W. Phillipson is Emeritus Professor of African Archaeology and former Director of the University Museum of Archaeology & Anthropology, Cambridge. In 2014 he was made an Associate Fellow of the Ethiopian Academy of Sciences.

Published in association with the British Institute in Eastern Africa.

Ethiopia: Addis Ababa University Press
Introduction - Part I Before Aksum
The northern Horn 3000 years ago
The first millennium BC - Part II The Kingdom of Aksum
Aksumite civilisation: an introductory summary
Aksumite languages & literacy
Some written sources relating to Aksumite civilisation
The emergence & expansion of the Aksumite state
Aksumite kingship & politics
Aksumite religion
Cultivation & herding, food & drink
Urbanism, architecture & non-funerary monuments
Aksumite burials
Aksumite technology & material culture
Aksumite coinage
Foreign contacts of the Aksumite state
Decline & transformation of the Aksumite state - Part III After Aksum
The Zagwe Dynasty - Part IV Epilogue
The future of the past in the northern Horn
"A useful working tool for scholars, a complete and updated textbook for students and a readable and informative account for those who wish to be introduced to the past of these regions." AETHIOPICA
"This authoritative and challenging book is essential for experts of Ethiopian and Eritrean archaeology and history, but it is also an accessible and engaging read for a wider audience." AFRICAN AFFAIRS
"[A] compelling read [and] a meticulous survey that engages with several branches of archaeology and history as well as art history, epigraphy, and linguistics. ... This authoritative and challenging book is essential for experts of Ethiopian and Eritrean archaeology and history, but it is also an accessible and engaging read for a wider audience beyond its geographical and temporal scope." AFRICAN AFFAIRS
"Foundations of an African Civilisation is an unparalleled contribution to the archaeological literature about Aksum, which will aid both the established researcher and the recently initiated student of Aksumite studies alike. Its comprehensive, yet largely accessible treatment of a range of archaeological, epigraphic, and historical data, excellent organisation and informative illustrations are a tribute and a testimony to David Phillipson's long-running dedication to exploring this most intriguing ancient African civilisation." AZANIA

Paperback

9781847010889

April 2014

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Ebook (EPDF)

9781846158735

August 2012

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Ebook (EPUB)

9781782042891

August 2012

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Title Details

304 Pages

2.16 x 1.4 cm

52 b/w. 35 line. Illustrations

Series: Eastern Africa Series

Imprint: James Currey