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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.167) 6. Conclusion
Aksum and Nubia

George Hatke

NYU Press

This book has explored the history of Aksumite–Nubian relations based on the available archaeological, epigraphic, and literary evidence. For the period before the rise of Aksum, there is good evidence of commercial and even political contact between Nubia and the Horn of Africa. By the turn of the first millennium BCE, however, the two regions seem to have gravitated toward two different axes: a Nile Valley axis in the case of Nubia and an Ethiopian Highlands–Red Sea axis in the case of Ethiopia. Thus for the Nubian kingdom of Kush, the most obvious point of contact with the outside world was Egypt. The book concludes by raising three important points. First, ancient Northeast Africa was not an integrated region politically, economically, or culturally. Second, political fictions played an important role in Aksumite royal ideology. Third, it is not clear whether Aksum's invasions of Nubia in the fourth century were the end result of strained political relations between them.

Keywords:   political contact, Nubia, Ethiopia, Kush, Egypt, Northeast Africa, political fiction, Aksum, invasion, political relations

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