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The Swazi Tribe Essay

Decent Essays
The Swazi Tribe, also known as the Swati, originated over 500 years ago in Central Africa, as a sub-group of the Nguni tribe, to which most of today’s Swazis are still closely related. Outside the Kingdom of Swaziland, the greatest number of Swazi people now live in the country of South Africa. The current Swazi population is about three million people.

The primary religion among the Swazi tribe is Christianity. This is often, however, blended with vestiges of the traditional tribal culture. Most notably, this involves a strong reverence for ancestral family spirits. With prayer and ritual the deceased ancestors are integrated into the everyday lives of Swazi families.

The language of the Swazi people is called “Siswati”, and is native to
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These are the King and the Queen Mother who rule jointly. They are given the title of the “Ingwenyama” which means “the Lion”, and the “Ndlovukati” which means “the She-Elephant.” If the King’s mother is no longer alive, another significant woman will rule in her place. Both share the political rule, but the Queen Mother also has the role of the spiritual leader who oversees and ensures that national rituals are carried out.

The common ancestry of the early leaders of the Swazis goes back to Chief Dlamini I, whose family produced a long line of strong kings, well loved by the Swazi people. The name Swazi, however, did not officially come into being until the mid-1800’s when Mswati II became their king. He is the origin of their name.

Beginning 500 years ago, they moved into southern Mozambique, in what was then called Tongaland. By 1600, they had established their own kingdom in what is now Swaziland. A coalition of some other tribes like the Sotho and the San occupied the new kingdom, and the name Swazi was given to any citizen who lived in the country regardless of tribe. The Swazi people were open and friendly, and interacted well with neighboring tribes. Ngwane III was the first modern king of the country, ruling for 35 years in the late
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