Nigeria Early States Before 1500
Source: The Library of Congress Country Studies
Long before 1500, much of present-day Nigeria was divided into states, which can be identified with the modern ethnic groups that trace their history to the origins of these states. These early states included the Yoruba kingdoms, the Edo kingdom of Benin, the Hausa cities, and Nupe. In addition, numerous small states to the west and south of Lake Chad were absorbed or displaced in the course of the expansion of Kanem, which was centered to the northeast of Lake Chad. Borno, initially the western province of Kanem, became independent in the late fourteenth century. Other states probably existed as well, but oral traditions and the absence of archaeological data do not permit an accurate dating of their antiquity.
Data as of June 1991
NOTE: The information regarding Nigeria on this page is re-published from The Library of Congress Country Studies. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Nigeria Early States Before 1500 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Nigeria Early States Before 1500 should be addressed to the Library of Congress.