History of Urhobo Kingdom – The Urhobo Kingdom is a vibrant and historically rich ethnic group located in the Delta State of Nigeria. The history of the Urhobo people is both fascinating and complex, marked by a rich tapestry of cultural, social, and political developments that have shaped their identity over the centuries. While it is challenging to cover the entire history of the Urhobo Kingdom in a single text, I can provide an overview of their history up to my last knowledge update in September 2021.....CONTINUE.FULL.READING>>>
Ancient Origins and Migration:
The Urhobo people are indigenous to the Niger Delta region in Nigeria. Their history can be traced back to ancient times, and it is believed that they are descendants of the progenitor ancestor, Eri. According to Urhobo oral tradition, Eri migrated from a place called Ile-Ife, which is considered the mythical homeland of the Yoruba people.
Urhobo Kingdom City
The Urhobo people traditionally lived in a series of city-states, each ruled by its own king or Ovie. These city-states were often engaged in trade, agriculture, and other economic activities. The Urhobo were known for their intricate artwork, particularly in woodcarving and bronze casting.
With the arrival of British colonialists in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the Urhobo, like many other ethnic groups in Nigeria, were subjected to British rule. The British established indirect rule, maintaining the authority of local chiefs, including the Ovies, while enforcing their colonial policies. This period brought significant changes to Urhobo society, as Western education, Christianity, and modern infrastructure were introduced.
Independence and Postcolonial Era:
Nigeria gained independence from British colonial rule in 1960. The Urhobo people actively participated in the struggle for independence and the formation of the Nigerian nation. They have continued to be active in Nigerian politics and have produced prominent leaders and politicians who have served at various levels of government.
The Urhobo people have a rich cultural heritage, which is expressed through their art, music, dance, and festivals. The Ovie’s palace, in each Urhobo city-state, is a center of cultural activities, where traditional customs and festivals are celebrated. Notable festivals include the Urhobo Uvwie Festival, the Ovwore festival, and the Okpe festival. The Urhobo people are also known for their traditional attire, which includes colorful wrappers and intricate beadwork.
The Urhobo people speak the Urhobo language, which belongs to the Niger-Congo language family. While English is the official language of Nigeria, Urhobo is still spoken in daily life, and efforts are made to preserve and promote the language.
Historically, the Urhobo people were predominantly engaged in agriculture, fishing, and trading. They cultivated crops like yam, cassava, and oil palm. In more recent times, many Urhobo people have moved to urban areas and are involved in various professions, including business, education, and government service.
Challenges and Progress:
The Urhobo people, like many other ethnic groups in Nigeria, have faced various challenges, including political marginalization, economic disparities, and environmental issues due to oil exploration in the Niger Delta. Efforts have been made to address these challenges through community development initiatives and advocacy for the rights of the Urhobo people.
In summary, the history of the Urhobo Kingdom in Delta State, Nigeria, is a complex and storied one, marked by a rich cultural heritage, a dynamic economy, and active participation in the development of Nigeria. The Urhobo people have adapted to various changes over the centuries, and their cultural identity remains a source of pride and resilience.….CONTINUE.FULL.READING>>>