Shaka Zulu has long been revered as one of this continent’s greatest warriors, but ask the everyday man why and he probably wouldn’t have a clue.
Good thing afkinsider.com have done their homework for us then with this comprehensive list of all his greatest military achievements.
Without further ado let’s get started. You, at the back of the class, pay attention please.
1. He introduced new weapons to the Zulu people:
Shaka Zulu introduced the ikwla, a weapon with a shorter sphere and a longer spearhead, sort of like a sword. This weapon gave Shaka’s warriors a huge advantage over opponents when they came up close for hand-to-hand combat.
2. He introduced cowhide shields, which were far stronger than the iron and wood ones previously used.
3. He accustomed his troops to war conditions:
Some historians say that Shaka Zulu would make his troops go on 50-mile marches for practice over rough and hot terrain…
4. He collected troops like they were acorns:
[In 1817] he had gathered an army of more than 2,000 warriors. By 1824, his army numbered up to 20,000.
5. His strict military decrees earned him respect. Our favourite:
He eliminated privilege and class. Warriors had to earn their positions and rank.
6. He may have introduced the famous bull horn formation:
7. He differentiated soldiers:
Shaka Zulu had soldiers carry different colored or patterned shields, depending on their rank. In a troop of hundreds, this made it much easier for soldiers to know exactly where to go…
8. He made his soldiers remain celibate. I’m sure this one went down very well with the soldiers, although those already married were allowed to do the no-pants dance with their partners.
9. He was fiercely dedicated to his mother:
Shaka was ruthless and violent with grief after his mother Nandi’s death in 1827. Pregnant women and their husbands from his tribe were murdered, crop planting and milk production was banned, and many Zulus were executed.
10. He started apprenticeships:
Children over age 6 would became apprentice warriors, delivering rations, cooking supplies and weapons to real warriors. By the time children came of age, they were accustomed to being in battle surroundings.
For the complete list head to afkinsider. History lesson complete, now go outside and play.
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