Tuesday 24 May 2022

Marka People of Mali

Marka People can be found in Mali and they are of both Sonineke and Mande speaking people, they inhabited the northwest of Present day Mali they traced their ancestry far back to the Ancient Ghana Empire in the 9th Century AD, they used masks in ceremonies to ensure a sucessful hunt or bountiful harvest , masks are vary in size they have elongated features, long nose, protruding mouth, eye shadowed by a domed shape forehead,  they are decorated with red fiber tassels on the ears and the head each covered with a brass in genometric patterns.

According to Saikou Tunkara the word” Sarakole” in mandinka and wolof it is also referred as ” Marka” in Bambara, ” Wakkore in Songhai, ” Sebbe” and ” Cheddo” in Fulani,  ”Aswane” in the Arabic language, In their Culture they make pottery,  cloth weaving,  wood carving also In their traditions Antelope is a symbol used for several masks throughout Mali and Burkina Faso but in Mali it is used mostly by the Bambara people and Marka people it is used for sculptures as well the kore mask made up of wood dates back to around the 19th Century- 20 th Century and the wooden cresk mask dates back to the early 19th Century. According to their Oral history a Muslim merchant was believed to be part of the Bamana Empire, Marka controlled the trade between the Sahel regions and the Beber People crossed the Sahara it is said the trading post to Present day Segou and Kaarta which is now Present day Western Mali, Bilton Coulibaly controlled the Segou which was believed it became the capital of the Bamana Empire due to the rule, Bamabara were dissatisfied with his rule and left which led to migration to further west in 1753 the Kingdom was declined as an Independent force in 1854 by El Haji Umar Tall, in their Culture the family have a squared mud huts and travelled using donkeys other transportation such as bicycle. According to B.K. Sillah one of the  first Soninke settlements was established in Ancinet Ghana around 750 AD it is claimed because of the Beber persecution the Soninke dispersed into a smaller groups within the neighbouring regions, the three main offshoots of the Sonnike are the Marka, Nono, Aser these tribes are broken into smaller clans but specialized in various crafts, some of the most important Sonnike tribes are the Sisse, Dramane, Sylla, Kante after they fleed to Present day Sengal and Gambia they intermarried or intermixed with the Wolof, Serer and Malinke people.

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