Mansa Musa

Mansa Musa

 

Mansa Musa (c. 1280 – c. 1337 C.E.), also known as Musa Keita, Musa I, and Kankan Musa, is said to be the wealthiest person in world history. He was the Emperor or Sultan of the Mali Empire in Western Africa, ruling for around 25 years, from c. 1312 – c. 1337 C.E. Mansa Musa’s wealth in today’s money has been conservatively estimated to be at least $400 billion dollars, which would make him richer than modern business tycoons like Andrew Carnegie, John D. Rockefeller, Warren Buffett, Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, and Jeff Bezos.

The Mali Empire was founded by Mansa Musa’s granduncle, the Mandingo King Sundiata Keita (the “Lion King”) in the 13th century C.E. At its height, the Mali Empire stretched for over 2,000 miles, bordered by the Atlantic Ocean, Sahara Desert, rainforest, and savannah regions of Western Africa. It was one of the largest empires in the medieval world and West Africa, and the wealthiest in all of Africa. The Mali Empire lasted for hundreds of years and included parts of the modern-day Western African countries of Burkina Faso, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Côte d'Ivoire, Niger, Nigeria, Chad, the Gambia, Senegal, Mauritania, and Mali.

 

Mansa Musa made most of his money from mining and controlling the trade in gold, copper, iron, salt, ivory, among other natural resources and commodities, as well as agricultural production and cattle commerce. The Mali Empire was the medieval “Old” World’s largest producer of gold, and Mansa Musa owned and supplied roughly half of the gold that circulated during those times. The empire’s gold was traded to North Africa and Europe, where it was used to mint European and Middle Eastern gold coins.

 

At the height of Musa’s reign, the Mali Empire boasted over 400 urban centers, including the prosperous, cultured, and learned cities of Timbuktu, Gao, Djenné, and the capital city of Niani. The empire nurtured local talent and attracted foreign leaders, diplomats, architects, investors, traders, students, scholars, scientists, religious adherents, artists, artisans, tourists, and others from across Africa, the Middle East, and Europe. Musa constructed great centers of learning in his empire, including the famed Sankoré University, with dormitories that could accommodate up to 25,000 students who had access to one of the world’s largest libraries, with some one million books and manuscripts.

 

As a devout Muslim, Mansa Musa embarked on a legendary 4,000-mile-long Hajj or pilgrimage to Mecca in present-day Saudi Arabia, between 1324 and 1325 C.E., accompanied by his wife Inari Kunate. Musa’s procession went across the Sahara Desert, through Cairo in Egypt, and on to the holy site, taking over a year (one-way) to complete. It included some  60,000 elaborately-adorned and finely-dressed people, as well as a caravan of hundreds of camels, horses, mules, and elephants that transported his entourage, food, supplies, and his extremely large stash of hundreds to thousands of pounds of pure gold bars and gold dust. Throughout this long journey, Musa gave away lots of gold to poor people, charities, and city officials. He made deals with merchants, bought books, luxury items, and souvenirs, and invested in real estate. Musa dropped so much gold cash that it caused a long recession in Egypt and the wider region over the next 12 years, devaluing the worth of the precious metal, and inflating the cost of goods. Because of Musa’s impressive Hajj to Mecca, Timbuktu became world famous as Africa’s “El Dorado,” a city of gold, lavish-living, spirituality, and learning. The Mali Empire also cemented its status as one of the greatest in world history in terms of its wealth, power, commerce, culture, education, and religion.

 

Mansa Musa

Family Core Entertainment

 

Verse 1

Mansa Musa, he’s an Emperor from Africa, he’s a Malian

He’s said to be the wealthiest in world history

He’s the richest, and still the richest

He was the Sultan of the Mali Empire in Western Africa

 

Controlling the trade in gold, and other resources

At the height of Musa’s reign

Many urban centers were built in the Empire

Including the learned city of Timbuktu, come and take me to Timbuktu

 

Chorus (With Hausa language terms)

I want to let you know - Mansa Musa

I want to let you know - Mansa Musa      Babba Sarki (Great King)

I want to let you know - Mansa Musa

All I want you to know - Mansa Musa

 

He’s an African - Mansa Musa                     Babba Sarki (Great King)                              

He’s an African - Mansa Musa                     Woyo inade fehi mita (He is wise)

He’s the richest man - Mansa Musa

He’s the richest man - Mansa Musa

 

Verse 2 (Akan language)

Sa sa mo ma yɛndi asa (Dance, dance, let us dance)

Mo nsori mbra yɛnko sua asa (Get up! Let’s go and learn how to dance)

Mansa Musa so diɛ, ɔpɛ asa (Mansa Musa likes to dance)

Ntsi mo mbusa asaana moakasa (So you should know before you criticize)

 

Yɛgye no saa yɛpɛ no saa (That’s the way to do it)

Toto wonsa na obiaa nkasa (Throw your hands up, ‘cause no one cares)

Yɛnkosa Adowa (Let’s dance the Adowa)

Yenkosa Agbadja (Let’s dance the Agbadja)

 

Yɛnkosa Tigaare na yɛnkosa Baawa (Let’s dance the Tigaare, and let’s dance the Baawa)

Yɛnkosa Adenkum, Kolomashie, Kpanlogo (Let’s dance the Adenkum, Kolomashie, Kpanlogo)

Yɛgye no saa yɛpɛ no saa (That’s the way to do it)

Toto wonsa na obiaa nkasa (Throw your hands up, ‘cause no one cares)

 

Chorus (With Hausa language terms)

I want to let you know - Mansa Musa

I want to let you know - Mansa Musa      Babba Sarki (Great King)

I want to let you know - Mansa Musa

All I want you to know - Mansa Musa      Woyo inade fehi mita (He is wise)

 

He’s an African - Mansa Musa                    

He’s an African - Mansa Musa                     Woyo inade fehi mita (He is wise)

He’s the richest man - Mansa Musa          Ayinshi mee kudi (He’s created with riches)

He’s the richest man - Mansa Musa         

 

Verse 3

We’re locked in to the Sultan - Mansa Musa

Generous, wealthy, Musa Keita

Creator of the city of gold, El Dorado

I call him Mr. Africa (wow)

 

Investor in education

He deserves a standing ovation

He helped other nations

I wish he was in this generation - Oh God

 

As-Salaam-Alaikum

Hundred percent is what I rate him

So wise you can never debate him

Real rich king, wasn’t no fake thing - Mansa

 

Chorus (With Hausa language terms)

I want to let you know - Mansa Musa

I want to let you know - Mansa Musa     

I want to let you know - Mansa Musa

All I want you to know - Mansa Musa

 

He’s an African - Mansa Musa                     Babba Sarki (Great King)

He’s an African - Mansa Musa                     Woyo inade fehi mita (He is wise)

He’s the richest man - Mansa Musa          Ayinshi mee kudi (He’s created with riches)

He’s the richest man - Mansa Musa

 
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