>>49276 They did meet and establish relations, but Abyssinia remained largely (Orthodox) Christian. This faith was strengthened as the Islamic armies turned from diplomacy to force.
The Book, "Ethiopia's Relations with the Muslim World" saw Aksum lose Oman and Yemen, and thereafter then defend against a naval expedition by Umar bin al-Khat'tab, 2nd Caliph of the Rashidun Caliphate. Aksum defeated this incursion. In the early 14th century, the Emperor of what was now Ethiopia, Amda Seyon, began conquests of his own that saw Ethiopia expand into much of the territory occupies today, conquering bordering Muslim kingdoms and Jewish Bastions that are known as Beta Israel, although the period after the first Italian incursion in the 19th century had seen a larger expansion.
Probably to some extent. The Aksumites were a fairly urban, trade-based civilization, but with the rise of Islam they were pushed inland and forced to take a more defensive stance. Trade declined, and so did urbanism, to the point that by the 15th century there were no real cities in the country. As Islam began to encircle Ethiopia in the medieval period and Islamic sultanates in the south grew more powerful, the Ethiopians became more and more militaristic, even abandoning the idea of a capital city in favour of moving the court to where ever was the most strategic at the time.
Ethiopia basically became a warrior state, where defeating Muslims was the main goal of the state rather than building infrastructure or trading. This system only lasted so long as the Ethiopians were more powerful than the Muslims, and this changed when Ahmed Gragn rallied the Somalis against the Ethiopians with the help of Ottoman weapons in the 16th century. Portuguese intervention helped to save Ethiopia, but the damage had already been done and Ethiopia was left weaker than ever.
In the 17th century Gondarine period they settled down in a palace-city at Gondar while the empire grew weaker and weaker, invaded by warlike Oromo tribes, and eventually falling into a state of civil war and chaos lasting until 1855.
Despite all of this, monasteries remained strong, patronizing art and architecture and basically forming the literate heart of Ethiopian civilization. Without them, Ethiopia would have been barely notable as a civilization. However, a monastic civilization was by nature insular and conservative, so Ethiopia was generally closed to new ideas.
>>52893 Had Islam not forced Ethiopia into militarism and cut it off from the world, it probably would have been much more urban and open to innovation, in contrast to the extremely rural and conservative society that it was in the 19th century, and probably a lot more open to modernization.
On the other hand, you could argue that without Islam being a constant threat there never would have been reason for Ethiopia to stick together at all; it's topography isolated some parts of the country from other and really doesn't encourage unity. It was the constant threat and the idea that Ethiopians were guarding a unique, divinely ordained empire against the forces of Islam that gave Ethiopians the ideological basis to form a single unified nation, and it's why they exist at all today.
>>52937 While I agree that the threat of Islam did provide a rallying force, Aksum was still a unified kingdom. It's trade position along the Red Sea and into the Indian Ocean offered an alternative route to China and Persia. I feel that Aksum missed out on a lot of opportunities for warfare and trade with the European states (And Persia/Syria, to some extent) that would have seen them acquiring much of the technology and ideas that allowed lesser Europeans to succeed in the wake of their major powers. I don't believe it too far-fetched that a successful, unimpeded Aksum would find incentive to migrate to the south and east, much like it did in the 14th and 19th (Post Italo-Abyssinia) centuries.
Naturally, the same problems that kept Europe out of Central Africa until the Scramble would have likewise locked out Aksum.
>>53543 Aksum was unified, but compared to medieval Ethiopia it was very small, mostly limited to Tigray and Eritrea, while medieval Ethiopia stretched south to Shewa and beyond. True, they might have remained unified, but I don't think they would have had the incentive to maintain direct control into most of the highlands. They're just not very useful for a trade-based empire.
>>54806 It's pretty inaccurate. Aksum never help real political control over the Nile, and they only controlled Yemen for a few years before their garrisons rebelled and formed their own Christian state. Within Ethiopia itself, there is no evidence for control outside of Tigray. Aksum was concerned with trade above all, so it wasn't generally that interested in territorial expansion. It was only after the decline of their trade that they moved inland and deeper into the highlands.
>>55243 Yes caused by large migrations and the political collapse of The Western Roman Empire. Tying it to Christianity is dumb, Byzantium was experiencing it's zenith under Christianity. Though to be fair the Western Empire had been a shell of itself for a while and the center of the roman empire had moved east before Christianities adoption. Also the Viking age was a little later than the "Dark Ages" which ended around 800 with the ascension of the Franks.
>>55243 I'd say the dark ages happened, but only in Western Europe (excluding Italy), and they were over before 800 AD. And even then there were isolated enclaves of civilization in monasteries and the Merovingian court.
>>57328 Italy was the only one who could feasible want them as a colony and by the time they were finally repelled the age of Empire building had waned along with many nations advocating for self rule of Ethiopia.
>>57328 My guess is that they were a Christian nation and had the loose backing of Russia. That, and Ethiopa does not lend itself well to invasion because of how rugged and distant from waterways it is. Like the other poster above me said, only Italy had ports nearby. The British would have to invade through Sudan (at the time controlled by the Mahdists, I think) or through Somaliland (no real ports). The French could have through Djbouti, maybe, but they had no real reason to.
>>57328 The Ethiopians had a reasonably modern force in highly advantageous defensive terrain. Since imperialism was mostly about dicksizing politicians were sensibly unwilling to send their forces against an enemy who could actually fight back
>>57402 They kinda don't. The violence is merely under-reported.
Eitherway, most "radical" islamists are in neighboring Somalia. In 2006, Ethiopia preemptively invaded Somalia. However, they committed many war crimes and overall had a negative and destabilizing effect on Somalia.
>>48707 Ethiopia was pretty successful. I mean, its location meant it was remote enough to not really be a target of conquest for the Greater Mediterranean world but close enough to still be within the cultural orbit. It was on the edge of the civilized world
I would say for it to be in a better position, Egypt would have to have been able to beat back the Muslims and establish itself as a Coptic kingdom. The Ethiopian church had cultural ties to the Egyptian church and therefore the Coptic church would have had a vested interest in it. It would probably develop a but like the Balkins in relation to the Byzantines.
Alternatively if the Byzantines held onto Egypt, its possible a relation could form like the Byzantines as Russia. Ethiopia providing troops to help Byzantine wars, while Ethiopia getting knowledge and technology from the Byzantines, maybe even leading to the Ethiopia expanding deeper into Africa. Like Russia did for Asia. But the problem is most of central Asia is sparely populated, and you can see an army coming from miles away, whereas Africa is a dense jungle, and fairly populated. They could spread throughout coastal Africa though like how the early European colonists did.
Out of the two possible scenarios I would think an independent Egypt would be best, since the religious ties are stronger and Egypt would naturally look south for allies, while the Byzantines have a much larger empire to look after and would probably be looking for European ties.
I think it was for the best that the Ethiopians were isolated. The first thing the Portuguese did when they were contacted by Ethiopians for assistance against the Muslims was to attempt to change their liturgical tradition to be more Roman.
>>>>59116 Yes, because it was a needless sticking point that stained their relationship and caused enmity. Wasn't it enough that they were Christian and not protestant? Was it really that important that their liturgy was in Coptic or whatever instead of Latin, when Muslims were threatening the region?
>>59245 They had a different book, tradition and power structure. Them being Christian, but not Protestant is the same as them being Protestant, since Protestant isn't really a sect. It's like saying isn't it fine the English were Anglican high church and not low church? Point was they weren't in communion with Rome.
Also for Abrahamic religions it wasn't good enough, there was a right and wrong. Which were important. It wasn't like, oh well at least the aren't Muslim, I guess God will look over the fact that they are worshiping incorrectly. I know we laugh about it now with our modern sensibilities, but they weren't moderns.
Also the Portuguese missionary works were as much political as they were religious. Ethiopians being Christians didn't help Portugal, them being Roman Catholic, under the order of Portugal or the Jesuits would.
>>59347 Yea, but those finer doctrinal points, like the Latin Rite used for mass , confirmation vs. Chrismation, use of leavened vs. Unleavened bread for eucharist seems inconsequential given the threat at the time.
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