Book Description: This work is part of a comprehensive series of reference books providing a look at the way of life, beliefs and achievements of the ancient cultures. It begins with early African kingdoms such as Kush, Mali, Ife and Zimbabwe, before moving on to Benin, its warrior kings, contact with Europe, decline and fall. It then turns to later kingdoms, Asante and the Zulus. The second half looks at politics and society, trade, military life, religion, art and everyday life in the kingdoms, especially Benin. The final chapter examines their legacy for present day Africa.