An African Missionary Condemns Polygamy (1866) by PDF

In early 1821, within the war-torn remnants of the Oyo Empire, a teenage boy named Ajayi lived within the city of Osogun together with his mom, father, and sisters. The Oyo Empire used to be situated in what's now southwestern Nigeria, a quarter that's domestic to the Yoruba ethnic workforce. The Oyo Empire, with its strong cavalry, used to be one of many biggest kingdoms in West Africa in the course of the 18th century. through the early nineteenth century, notwithstanding, the empire had collapsed in civil conflict, and rival Yoruba warlords fought each other. similar to modern day wars in Syria, Iraq, Sudan, Somalia, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and somewhere else, unlucky civilians like Ajayi have been stuck in the course of the warring factions.

When an enemy military of a number of thousand attacked Ajayi’s native land, the boy and his relatives have been taken captive. Ajayi used to be separated from his kin, and offered into slavery. Over the following couple of years he used to be offered and traded from one individual to a different. He was once offered seven instances to diversified proprietors ahead of he was once bought to a Portuguese slave send on the port of Lagos.

By this time the Atlantic Slave alternate were abolished through nice Britain and several western international locations, together with Portugal. yet Portuguese, Brazilian, Spanish, Cuban, and smugglers from different countries, overlooked the anti-slave exchange treaties. unlawful slave buying and selling vessels persisted to smuggle enslaved Africans to plantations in Cuba and Brazil, attempting to ward off British naval patrols. British naval ships patrolled the West African coast attempting to intercept the smugglers. The Portuguese slave send that carried Ajayi was once a kind of that was once captured by means of the Royal Navy.

In conserving with typical approach, the British send took Ajayi and the opposite captives to the British West African colony of Sierra Leone, the place they have been freed. Sierra Leone have been based within the past due 18th century as a fatherland for black Britons and African American Loyalists. After the Atlantic Slave exchange was once outlawed in 1807, it grew to become a handy place to deposit Africans liberated from unlawful slave ships. those Africans got here from many various groups and assorted areas of Africa, so returning them to their homelands should not have been practical.

Sierra Leone turned a melting pot of British colonial effect, in addition to diverse African and Afro-American cultures. Yoruba humans, referred to as Aku in Sierra Leone, shaped one of many biggest ethnic teams within the colony. In his new domestic Ajayi discovered to talk English, to learn and write, and switched over to Christianity. He turned one of many first Africans to turn into a excessive score clergyman within the Anglican Church, and followed the English identify Samuel Crowther, after considered one of his mentors. Ajayi Crowther married a Yoruba lady named Asano, who switched over from Islam to Christianity in Sierra Leone and used to be baptized Susan. She had additionally been rescued from a slave ship.

Ajayi Crowther back to his formative years place of birth within the 1840s as a missionary. Crowther used to be one of the Yoruba humans, or humans of Yoruba descent, who lower back to their ancestral native land within the nineteenth century. a few, like Ajayi Crowther, got here from Sierra Leone. different recognized Yoruba Sierra Leonean returnees integrated Crowther’s son-in-law Thomas Babington Macaulay (1826-78), the daddy of Nigerian nationalist Herbert Macaulay, and Samuel Johnson (1846-1901). Johnson, who was once born in Sierra Leone to Yoruba mom and dad, was once an Anglican clergyman who's top referred to as the writer of “The heritage of the Yorubas”. different Yoruba returnees got here from Brazil and Cuba, either one of which had huge Yoruba groups end result of the Oyo civil wars and the Atlantic Slave alternate. The returnees brought western impacts to Yoruba state ahead of British colonial rule was once established.

In this excerpt from certainly one of Crowther’s works, the reverend condemns the conventional perform of polygamy between his Yoruba countrymen. He advocates, in its place the Christian excellent of monogamy.

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