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Aksum and NubiaWarfare, Commerce, and Political Fictions in Ancient Northeast Africa$
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George Hatke

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780814760666

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814760666.001.0001

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(p.11) 1. Introduction
Aksum and Nubia

George Hatke

NYU Press

This book explores the influence of warfare, commerce, and political fictions on the relations between two ancient African states, Nubia and the Ethiopian kingdom of Aksum. Focusing primarily on the fourth century CE, it considers how the contact between Nubia and Ethiopia developed within very different regional spheres of interaction. Based on this interaction, the book argues that ancient Northeast Africa cannot be treated as a unified area politically, economically, or culturally. It also suggests that the seemingly weak ties between Aksum and Nubia can be attributed to the geographical orientation of the Ethiopian Highlands and the middle Nile Valley. The book examines how Aksum and the Nubian kingdom of Kush coexisted in peace for most of their history before Aksum took up arms against the latter. This introductory chapter discusses evidence of Ethiopian–Nubian contact before the first century CE.

Keywords:   warfare, commerce, political fiction, Nubia, Ethiopia, Aksum, Northeast Africa, Nile Valley, Kush

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