Resource 5: Making meaning
Teacher resource for planning or adapting to use with pupils
Paragraph for older classes: The Zulu kings
The Zulu kings established the most powerful black dynasty Africa has ever known. The mighty Shaka, who founded the dynasty in the early 19th century, welded the Zulu nation into a formidable military unit. Known as the ‘Black Napoleon’, this first Zulu king was a ruthless, yet inspired, leader. Triumphant and merciless in battle, he led his people to greatness and ruled them with iron-handed discipline. His assassination by his treacherous half-brother, Dingane, did nothing to lessen the rule of terror. But the self-indulgent Dingane, although cruel and despotic, was no warrior and his reign ended in disaster. Defeated by the Boers at the battle of Blood River, Dingane was eventually forced to flee Zululand and died in exile. After his death the neighbouring territory of Natal became a white settlement and the course of Zulu history changed.
Adapted from ‘The Zulu Kings’ by Roberts, R. (1974) published by Hamish Hamilton.