Modern-day Zimbabwe is named after the kingdom of Zimbabwe which flourished around 1220 AD to 1420 AD. Since the ancient times, Zimbabwe has been home to many great kingdoms and states. But it was only in the British colonial era, that Zimbabwe emerged as a single geographical entity. Upon independence on April 18, 1980, from the White Colonial British government, Zimbabwe adopted a unitary republic constitutional framework under the 2013 constitution. Harare (formerly called Salisbury) is the capital of Zimbabwe which is also the most populous city of this country.
So what is the old name of Zimbabwe ?
The region which is now known as Zimbabwe was first inhabited by hunters and gatherers called Khoisan people. The Mashona people settled here around 300 AD and built the ruins of Great Zimbabwe (UNESCO World Heritage Site). The first states started taking shape in around the 10th century by Shona speaking people. Different names of Zimbabwe associated with different points of history are:
Matabeleland-it was the name of the empire created by Matebele people who conquered Mashona in 1834.
Southern Rhodesia-1911-1964 Zimbabwe was formerly known by this name from 1898. However, this became official only in 1911.
Rhodesia-1964-1979-it was the successor state to the colonial southern Rhodesia which ultimately became Zimbabwe. The northern Rhodesia became Zambia.
Zimbabwe Rhodesia- 1979-1980-it was an unrecognized state like its predecessor republic called Rhodesia. This state didn’t have international recognition.
Republic of Zimbabwe-1980 onwards-After the independence, the colonial government of Zimbabwe Rhodesia became fully sovereign Republic of Zimbabwe and got international recognition as a country on 18 April 1980.
What does the name Zimbabwe mean?
The term Zimbabwe is a Shona (a language) name for Great Zimbabwe, an ancient ruined city situated in the south-east of Zimbabwe. Generally, it is believed that the term Zimbabwe is derived either from dzimba–dza–mabwe, translated from the Karanga dialect of Shona as “large houses of stone” or it is derived as a form of dzimba-hwe which means “venerated houses” in a dialect of Shona.
Kingdoms associated with Zimbabwe:
The various kingdoms associated with Zimbabwe were:
- Mapungubwe Kingdom AD 1075–1220
- Zimbabwe Kingdom AD 1220–1450
- Mutapa Kingdom AD 1450-1760
- Torwa dynasty AD 1450-1683
- Rozwi Empire AD 1684-1834
- Matabeleland AD 1838-1894
The Ndebele Kingdom was also active in Zimbabwe in the 19th century.
Boundary of Zimbabwe
The Republic of Zimbabwe is a landlocked country in southern Africa. In the south, it has a boundary with South Africa, in southwest and west it shares the boundary with Botswana, whereas in the north it has Zambia as its neighbor. Mozambique lies to its northeast and east.
Quick Facts about Zimbabwe
- Official Languages-16 official languages: English, Shona, Sindebele etc.
- Area: 390,757 km²
- Time Zone-UTC+2
- Principal physical feature: Broad Ridge
- Religion: Christian (more than four-fifths) majority
- Symbols: the Zimbabwe bird (eagle) is found on flags and other state emblems and is one of the most used symbols.
- Crops: Corn (maize), wheat, millet, sorghum, barley, peanuts, cotton, sugar etc.
- Industries: Mining, manufacturing, etc.
- GDP: 17.85 billion US dollars (2017)
- Population: 17,037,648 as of November 2018, 69th rank in the world, 0.22% of the total world population
Median Age-19.1 Years