Gondar was a small village when at the beginning of the 16th century it was chosen by the Negus Sysenius (Seged I.) as the capital of his kingdom.
Later emperors built other castles and palaces, the latest in date being that of the Negus Yesu II.
The extension of the Italian zone excited the suspicions of John, negus of Abyssinia, whose apprehensions were assiduously fomented by Alula, ras of Tigr, and by French and Greek adventurers.
Measures, apparently successful, were taken to reassure the negus, but shortly afterwards protection inopportunely accorded by Italy to enemies of Ras Alula, induced the Abyssinians to enter upon hostilities.
On the 28th of March 1888 the negus indeed descended from the Abyssinian high plateau in the direction of Saati, but finding the Italian position too strong to be carried by assault, temporized and opened negotiations for peace.
The negus next marched against Menelek, king of Shoa, whose neutrality Italy had purchased with 5000 Remington.
Tidings of a new Mahdist incursion into Abyssinian territory reaching the negus induced him to postpone the settlement of his quarrel with Menelek until the dervishes had been chastised.
His death gave rise to an Abyssinian war of succession between Mangash, natural son of John, and Menelek, grandson of the Negus Sella-Sellassi.
The negus, however, conformed to article 17 of the treaty of IJccialli by requesting Italy to represent Ahyssinia at the Brussels anti-slavery conference, an act which strengthened Italian illusions as to Meneleks readiness to submit to their protectorate.
On the 28th of October 1890 Count Antonelli, negotiator of the treaty, was despatched to settle the controversy, but on arriving at Adis Ababa, the new residence of the negus, found agreement impossible either with regard to the frontier or the protectorate.
The comparatively facile success achieved by Baratieri against Mangash seems to have led him to undervalue his enemy, and to forget that Menelek, negus and king conques~
Baldissera opened negotiations with the negus through Major Salsa, and simultaneously reorganized the Italian army.
Major Nerazzini was then despatched as special envoy to the negus to arrange terms of peace.
Had addressed to Prester John to the Negus Alexander of Abyssinia, but he was detained by that prince and never allowed to leave the country.
It was not until 1526 that the embassy was dismissed; and not many years afterwards the negus entreated the help of the Portuguese against Mahommedan invaders, and the viceroy sent an expeditionary force, commanded by his brother Cristoforo da Gama, with 450 musketeers.
The two principal American taffrail logs are the Negus and Bliss (Messrs Norie and Wilson).
The frontier towards Abyssinia was fixed by a convention of March 1897 with the Negus Menelik.
At the close of 1907 the Negus Menelik, in return for a pecuniary indemnity (£r20,000), agreed to a modification of the 1897 line, whereby the Italian protectorate was extended north of Lugh to Dolo.
The town and district form a small ethnographical island, having been peopled in the 18th century by a colony of Takruri from Darfur, who, finding the spot a convenient resting-place for their fellow-pilgrims on their way to Mecca and back, obtained permission from the negus of Abyssinia to make a permanent settlement.
Tradition tells that a few years before his death he did actually send letters to the emperor Heraclius, to the negus of Abyssinia, the king of Persia, and Cyrus, patriarch of Alexandria, the " Mukaukis " of Egypt, summoning them to accept Islam and threatening them with punishment in case of refusal.
He also established a reputation as a preacher, and having been summoned to court, succeeded in vanquishing the native priests and in converting Za-Denghel, the negus, who wrote to the pope and the king of Spain for more missionaries, an act of zeal which involved him in civil war with the Abyssinian priests (who dreaded the influence of Paez) and ultimately cost him his life (Oct.
In 1872 Munzinger, now in Egyptian service, annexed Asmara to the khedivial dominions, but in 1884, owing to the rise of the mandi,Egypt evacuated her Abyssinian provinces and Asmara was chosen by Ras Alula, the representative of the negus Johannes (King John), as his headquarters.
The chief town, Gondar, by which name the province is also known, was the residence of the negus negusti, or emperor, of Abyssinia from the middle ages up to 1854.
King John, the negus of Abyssinia, burning to avenge this defeat, marched, in February 1889, with an enormous army to Gallabat, where the amir Zeki Tumal commanded the khalifas forces, some 60,000 strong, and had strongly fortified the town and the camp. On the 9th of March 1889 the Abyssinians made a terrific onslaught, stormed and burnt the town, and took thousands of prisoners.
Internal strife prevented the new negus of Abyssinia from prosecuting the war, which thus, in spite of the Abyssinian success, resulted in the increased prestige of the khalifa.
The Egyptians took advantage of civil war in Abyssinia to seize Keren and the Bogos country in 1872 1, an action against which the negus Johannes (King John), newly come to the throne, did not at the 1 During the Second Empire unsuccessful efforts were made by France to obtain a Red Sea port and a foothold in northern Abyssinia.
With the intention of proceeding to Abyssinia, whose Negus (emperor) Segued had been converted to Roman Catholicism by Pedro Paez, he left India in 1624.
The emperor, styled negus negusti (king of kings), is occasionally assisted by a council of rases.
The chief judicial official is known as the aira-negus (breath of the king).
Among others who had engaged in this search was Pedro de Covilham, who arrived in Abyssinia in 1490, and, believing that he had at length reached the far-famed kingdom, presented geese g g P to the negus, or emperor of the country, a letter from his master the king of Portugal, addressed to Prester John.
Covilham remained in the country, but in 1507 an Armenian named Matthew was sent by the negus to the king of Portugal to request his aid against the Mahommedans.
With the help of the rifles and guns presented to him by the British, he had beaten Ras Bareya of Tigre, Wagshum Gobassie of Amhara and Tekla Giorgis of Condar, and after proclaiming himself negus negusti under the name of Johannes or John, was now preparing to march on Shoa.
According to the former, the negus was bound to make use of Italy as a channel for communicating with other powers, whereas the Amharic version left it optional.
Here he received an ambassador from the negus beseeching him to send help against the Moslems, and in the July following a force of 450 musqueteers, under the command of Christopher da Gama, younger brother of the admiral, marched into the interior, and being joined by native troops were at first successful against the enemy; but they were subsequently defeated, and their commander taken prisoner and put to death (August 1542).
After this, quarrels arose between the negus and Bermudez, who had returned to Abyssinia with Christopher da Gama and who now wished the emperor publicly to profess himself a convert to Rome.
This the negus refused to do, and at length Bermudez was obliged to make his way out of the country.
His successor Mendez was a man of much less conciliatory manners, and the feelings of the people became strongly excited against the intruders, till at length, on the death of the negus Sysenius, Socinius or Seged I., and the accession of his son Fasilidas in 1633, they were all sent out of the country, after having had a footing there for nearly a century Visits of and a half.
The seat of government, or rather of overlordship, has usually been in Amhara, the ruler of which, calling himself negus negusti (king of kings, or emperor), has exacted tribute, when he could, from the other provinces.
The title of negus negusti has been to a considerable extent based on the blood in the veins of the claimant.
Some of the rulers of the larger provinces have at times been given, or have given themselves, the title of negus or king, so that on occasion as many as three, or even more, neguses have been reigning at the same time; and this must be borne in mind by the student of Abyssinian history in order to avoid confusion of rulers.
Bearing these matters in mind, we find that during the 18th century the most prominent and beneficent rulers were the emperor Yesu of Gondar, who died about 1720, Sebastie, negus of Shoa (1703-1718), Amada Yesus of Shoa, who extended his kingdom and founded Ankober (1743-1774), Tekla Giorgis of Amhara (1770-1798?) and Asfa Nassen of Shoa (1774-1807), the latter being especially renowned as a wise and benevolent monarch.
But Ubie, who was aiming at the crown, soon attacked Ras Ali, and after several indecisive campaigns proclaimed himself negus of Tigre.