Abomey

Infobox Settlement
official_name = Abomey
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pushpin_label_position =bottom
pushpin_mapsize = 200
pushpin_map_caption =Location in Benin
subdivision_type = Country
subdivision_type1 = Department
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subdivision_type2 = Commune
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population_as_of=2002
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population_total = 59,672
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latd=7|latm=11|lats=8|latNS=N
longd=1|longm=59|longs=17|longEW=E
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Abomey is a town in Benin, formerly the capital of the ancient kingdom of Dahomey. Population 59, 672 (2002) [ [http://www.citypopulation.de/Benin.html www.citypopulation.de] , Retrieved on June 12 2008] . The kingdom was established about 1625. The royal palaces of Abomey are a group of earthen structures built by the Fon people between the mid-17th and late 19th Centuries. One of the most famous and historically significant traditional sites in West Africa, the palaces form one of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

The town was surrounded by a mud wall with a circumference estimated at six miles ("Encyclopaedia Britannica", 1911), pierced by six gates, and protected by a ditch five feet deep, filled with a dense growth of prickly acacia, the usual defence of West African strongholds. Within the walls were villages separated by fields, several royal palaces, a market-place and a large square containing the barracks. In November 1892, Behanzin, the last independent reigning king of Dahomey, being defeated by French colonial forces, set fire to Abomey and fled northward. The French colonial administration rebuilt the town and connected it with the coast by a railroad.

Infobox World Heritage Site
WHS = Royal Palaces of Abomey


State Party = BEN
Type = Cultural
Criteria = iii, iv
ID = 323
Region = Africa
Year = 1985
Session = 9th
Danger = 1985-2007
Link = http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/323

When UNESCO designated the royal palaces of Abomey as a World Heritage Site in 1985 it stated:From 1625 to 1900 twelve kings succeeded one another at the head of the powerful Kingdom of Abomey. With the exception of King Akaba, who used a separate enclosure, they each had their palaces built within the same cob-wall area, in keeping with previous palaces as regards the use of space and materials. The royal palaces of Abomey are a unique reminder of this vanished kingdom.

From 1993, 50 of the 56 bas-reliefs that formerly decorated the walls of King Glèlè (now termed the 'Salle des Bijoux') have been located and replaced on the rebuilt structure. The bas-reliefs carry an iconographic program expressing the history and power of the Fon people.

Today, the city is of less importance, but is still popular with tourists and as a centre for crafts. Its population in 1992 was 66,595 ( [http://www.encyclopedia.com/html/A/Abomey.asp] ).

References

External links

* [http://whc.unesco.org/sites/323.htm UNESCO assessment of threats to the site, after tornado damage in 1984.]

* [http://www.epa-prema.net/abomeyGB/index.html Historical Museum of Abomey]


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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Abomey — Administration Pays  Benin !Bénin …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Abomey — Abomey …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Abomey — Bandera …   Wikipedia Español

  • ABOMEY — Au XVIIIe siècle, Abomey devint la capitale d’un royaume noir dont les souverains successifs agrandirent leur domaine par des guerres renouvelées contre leurs voisins, surtout les Yoruba (ou Nago). L’un des plus puissants fut Ghézo (1818 1858),… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Abomey —   [abɔ mɛ], Stadt im Küstengebiet der Republik Benin, Westafrika, 54 400 Einwohner, Verwaltungssitz der Provinz Zou; katholischer Bischofssitz;   Verkehr:   Flugplatz.   Geschichte:   Die 1658 gegründete Stadt war Hauptstadt des Königreichs… …   Universal-Lexikon

  • Abomey — /ab euh may , euh boh mee/, n. a city in SW Benin. 50,000. * * * ▪ Benin       town, southern Benin, located about 60 miles (100 km) north of Cotonou. Probably founded in the early 17th century, it soon became the capital of the kingdom of Abomey …   Universalium

  • Abomey — Original name in latin Abomey Name in other language Abome, Abomei, Abomej, Abomey, Palacios Reais de Abomei, Palcios Reais de Abomei, Абомей State code BJ Continent/City Africa/Porto Novo longitude 7.18286 latitude 1.99119 altitude 228… …   Cities with a population over 1000 database

  • Abomey — geographical name city S Benin population 54,418 …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • Abomey — noun A major city in southern Benin …   Wiktionary

  • Abomey — ► C. de Benín, cap. de la prov. de Zou, y del antiguo reino de Dahomey; 41 000 h …   Enciclopedia Universal


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