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Similarities Between Yoruba And Bini (edo) Dancers - Culture (2) - Nairaland

Nairaland Forum / Nairaland / General / Culture / Similarities Between Yoruba And Bini (edo) Dancers (17403 Views)

"Ooni Of Ife Is Oba Of Benin's Son,Not In The Same Class"-Bini Palace To Alake / Voice-recording Of People Speaking Igbo And Bini in 1911 / The Ways Of A Bini(edo) (2) (3) (4)

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Re: Similarities Between Yoruba And Bini (edo) Dancers by lakal(m): 2:04am On May 18, 2011
I wish there were more high-quality cultural dance videos on youtube!  Ondo, once again.

[flash=400,400]
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TvPlRkjYDxo&feature=relmfu[/flash]
Re: Similarities Between Yoruba And Bini (edo) Dancers by Nobody: 12:15pm On Nov 21, 2011
^^ thanks there wink
Re: Similarities Between Yoruba And Bini (edo) Dancers by tevinsolt: 5:48am On Jan 06, 2012
ekiti people sounds almost exactly thesame smiley

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FEQhBEpWHsI
Re: Similarities Between Yoruba And Bini (edo) Dancers by StarFlux: 7:38am On Jan 06, 2012
Ileke-IdI:

I'm still trying to understand how such a vibrant and powerful empire because a minority.

Binis [i]should [/i]be one of the largest ethnicity in Nigeria, if I get my history right.


This is also something I don't understand. If anyone would be kind enough to explain.
Re: Similarities Between Yoruba And Bini (edo) Dancers by tpia5: 11:26am On Jan 06, 2012
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Re: Similarities Between Yoruba And Bini (edo) Dancers by bokohalal(m): 11:34am On Jan 06, 2012
Ileke-IdI:

I'm still trying to understand how such a vibrant and powerful empire because a minority.

Binis [i]should [/i]be one of the largest ethnicity in Nigeria, if I get my history right.


I had tried to ignore this seeming puzzle at first because it is actually not one.
StarFlux:

This is also something I don't understand. If anyone would be kind enough to explain.
It is because Benin Kingdom is in Nigeria.
The Ashantis would be a minority if they were in Nigeria. Same for the Fons of Dahomey. These were vibrant Empires on the West African coast. IF the British had carved up Nigeria into many nations after conquering the people that constitute the present and left Benin Kingdom on its own this puzzle would not have come up.

1 Like

Re: Similarities Between Yoruba And Bini (edo) Dancers by bokohalal(m): 11:47am On Jan 06, 2012
tpia@:

The portuguese establishing a base in benin doesnt mean it was a large ethnicity.

Other ethnicities were obviously present there, and in significant numbers.

Every indigenous oral tradition related to benin points to that fact.

You fail to understand that there was no Nigeria just over a century ago.
Would the Binis have been a majority by the time the Portuguese came and made a nation out of the Empire then and same remained till present? Knowing fully that there were no significant number of Yorubas(?) or Igbos(?)In the Benin Empire?
Re: Similarities Between Yoruba And Bini (edo) Dancers by tpia5: 12:01pm On Jan 06, 2012
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Re: Similarities Between Yoruba And Bini (edo) Dancers by bokohalal(m): 12:11pm On Jan 06, 2012
tpia@:

^Guilty conscience?

Or why specify yoruba and igbo.

They were not called Yoruba or Igbo in the Fifteenth century.
Re: Similarities Between Yoruba And Bini (edo) Dancers by PhysicsQED(m): 1:33pm On Jan 06, 2012
@ StarFlux, the Benin kingdom in its entirety was not densely populated compared to some other places. This was specifically noted by Olfert Dapper's description of Benin that he published in 1668.

In the capital city itself, there were also a significant number of slaves, and occasionally immigrants, from some nearby groups.


But there really is no reason why the prominence of a place should correlate directly with the size of the ethnic group.
It simply doesn't follow that being a large ethnic group necessarily results in a prominent kingdom springing up from that group or vice versa.


@ Tpia@, care to mention the base the Portuguese established in Benin? I'm pretty sure they were based in São Tomé.

The Portuguese also visited the Ijebu kingdom in the 1500s. Did they establish a "base" there too?

The Portuguese visited several parts of the coast of West Africa and Benin was definitely not the first place they visited.

Whatever we might want to think, Benin is still fundamentally located inland, not at the coast, and its outlets such as Ughoton and Gelegele are still not at the coast, so I do not think one should insinuate that the Portuguese be given such disproportionate credit (all of the white or non-African scholars that studied Benin's history in depth completely failed to do this, but somehow I'm not surprised when other Africans, or fellow Nigerians try to do this  undecided) for Benin's prominence when the Portuguese visited so many places in west and central Africa yet failed to do so much in the rest of Africa that they allegedly did for Benin.

Benin was not the only place described as great or mighty by Europeans when they got there, anyway. Olfert Dapper (his sources, that is) said in 1668 that "Ulkami" (obviously "Olukumi" a term used by some Yoruba speakers and applied to Yoruba speakers by some), a kingdom described as being next to Allada (called "Arder" in the text, but clearly referring to Allada, Dahomey) was a "mighty place" and the scholars that have read that passage have all identified this with Oyo. This means that off of its reputation with other groups, Oyo was being promoted to Europeans by those groups less far into the interior.

The obstacle as far as European promotion of Oyo was just that Oyo was further in the interior. However Oyo's real connection was in the north, not with Europeans. Samuel Johnson even went so far as to claim: "It should be remembered that the coast tribes were of much less importance then than now, both in population and in intelligence ; light and civilization with the Yorubas came from the north with which they have always retained connection through the Arabs and Fulanis."  (The History of the Yorubas, Chapter IV)

One could claim that Borgu, Nupe, etc. elevated the Oyo kingdom to an empire and to a level of military conquest it would not have had otherwise and one can try to write off Oyo's independent rise to power as wholly northern inspired, but nobody has any real issue with Nupe and Borgu for what they did for Oyo like you seem to have with the Portuguese and what they supposedly did for Benin. (And I am aware that Nupe once sacked Oyo (and the Alaafin and his court took refuge in Borgu), but that doesn't change the reality that the Oyo cavalry was Northern inspired.) Nevertheless, attributing credit solely to Oyo's neighbors for its historical might would not really be justified. Anybody who reads up on Oyo, would understand how important the indigenous culture and society was to the rise of the kingdom.

As for the Portuguese, two Portuguese ships visited and traded with the Ijebu kingdom in 1553 and some Portuguese even lived in Ijebu Ode at one point. Yet I have never read anywhere where it was claimed that the Portuguese established a "base" in the Ijebu kingdom and there is really nothing to suggest that they did.

I don't really see why Benin should have had any greater rapport with the Portuguese than the Portuguese had with anybody else, or why numerous other "Benins" did not arise in the area stretching from Badagry to the Mahin area or other places on the coast or inland from the coast at any point in time following Portuguese contact if the Portuguese were the catalyst for rises to power in and around the Benin area.

By the way, you said earlier in another thread that Yorubas contributed greatly to the Benin empire and I partially agree with that but what I have to point out is that merely having Yorubas or Portuguese among them can't explain the level of Benin's development. As mentioned earlier, there is nothing like a Benin in the area stretching from Badagry to the Mahin area.

So while I partially agree with your earlier statement, and I acknowledge that Binis, like many other groups, can't be of perfectly homogeneous ancestry (even some very common and basic Edo words (like mouth, mother, etc.) for which there is no other word are identical to or similar to  Yoruba, Igbo, or other groups' words), I have to point out that without the autochthonous culture's political system, defenses, and the unique culture in place, there is no reason it should have had anything more going for it than the other Nigerian kingdoms, and no definite reason it should have been greater than any of the settlements across the coasts or inland from the coasts. One can read R.E. Bradbury's analysis of the unique aspects of the culture in some of his articles in Benin Studies to get a better perspective.

If not for the actual Binis, there is really no reason why Benin would be mentioned with any more interest or admiration than any of the more minor and less prominent kingdoms that existed in Nigeria and the Guinea coast.

2 Likes

Re: Similarities Between Yoruba And Bini (edo) Dancers by StarFlux: 3:55pm On Jan 06, 2012
PhysicsQED:

@ StarFlux, the Benin kingdom in its entirety was not densely populated compared to some other places. This was specifically noted by Olfert Dapper's description of Benin that he published in 1668.

In the capital city itself, there were also a significant number of slaves, and occasionally immigrants, from some nearby groups.


But there really is no reason why the prominence of a place should correlate directly with the size of the ethnic group.
It simply doesn't follow that being a large ethnic group necessarily results in a prominent kingdom springing up from that group or vice versa.


@ Tpia@, care to mention the base the Portuguese established in Benin? I'm pretty sure they were based in São Tomé.

The Portuguese also visited the Ijebu kingdom in the 1500s. Did they establish a "base" there too?

The Portuguese visited several parts of the coast of West Africa and Benin was definitely not the first place they visited.

Whatever we might want to think, Benin is still fundamentally located inland, not at the coast, and its outlets such as Ughoton and Gelegele are still not at the coast, so I do not think one should insinuate that the Portuguese be given such disproportionate credit (all of the white or non-African scholars that studied Benin's history in depth completely failed to do this, but somehow I'm not surprised when other Africans, or fellow Nigerians try to do this  undecided) for Benin's prominence when the Portuguese visited so many places in west and central Africa yet failed to do so much in the rest of Africa that they allegedly did for Benin.

Benin was not the only place described as great or mighty by Europeans when they got there, anyway. Olfert Dapper (his sources, that is) said in 1668 that "Ulkami" (obviously "Olukumi" a term used by some Yoruba speakers and applied to Yoruba speakers by some), a kingdom described as being next to Allada (called "Arder" in the text, but clearly referring to Allada, Dahomey) was a "mighty place" and the scholars that have read that passage have all identified this with Oyo. This means that off of its reputation with other groups, Oyo was being promoted to Europeans by those groups less far into the interior.

The obstacle as far as European promotion of Oyo was just that Oyo was further in the interior. However Oyo's real connection was in the north, not with Europeans. Samuel Johnson even went so far as to claim: "It should be remembered that the coast tribes were of much less importance then than now, both in population and in intelligence ; light and civilization with the Yorubas came from the north with which they have always retained connection through the Arabs and Fulanis."  (The History of the Yorubas, Chapter IV)

One could claim that Borgu, Nupe, etc. elevated the Oyo kingdom to an empire and to a level of military conquest it would not have had otherwise and one can try to write off Oyo's independent rise to power as wholly northern inspired, but nobody has any real issue with Nupe and Borgu for what they did for Oyo like you seem to have with the Portuguese and what they supposedly did for Benin. (And I am aware that Nupe once sacked Oyo (and the Alaafin and his court took refuge in Borgu), but that doesn't change the reality that the Oyo cavalry was Northern inspired.) Nevertheless, attributing credit solely to Oyo's neighbors for its historical might would not really be justified. Anybody who reads up on Oyo, would understand how important the indigenous culture and society was to the rise of the kingdom.

As for the Portuguese, two Portuguese ships visited and traded with the Ijebu kingdom in 1553 and some Portuguese even lived in Ijebu Ode at one point. Yet I have never read anywhere where it was claimed that the Portuguese established a "base" in the Ijebu kingdom and there is really nothing to suggest that they did.

I don't really see why Benin should have had any greater rapport with the Portuguese than the Portuguese had with anybody else, or why numerous other "Benins" did not arise in the area stretching from Badagry to the Mahin area or other places on the coast or inland from the coast at any point in time following Portuguese contact if the Portuguese were the catalyst for rises to power in and around the Benin area.

By the way, you said earlier in another thread that Yorubas contributed greatly to the Benin empire and I partially agree with that but what I have to point out is that merely having Yorubas or Portuguese among them can't explain the level of Benin's development. As mentioned earlier, there is nothing like a Benin in the area stretching from Badagry to the Mahin area.

So while I partially agree with your earlier statement, and I acknowledge that Binis, like many other groups, can't be of perfectly homogeneous ancestry (even some very common and basic Edo words (like mouth, mother, etc.) for which there is no other word are identical to or similar to  Yoruba, Igbo, or other groups' words), I have to point out that without the autochthonous culture's political system, defenses, and the unique culture in place, there is no reason it should have had anything more going for it than the other Nigerian kingdoms, and no definite reason it should have been greater than any of the settlements across the coasts or inland from the coasts. One can read R.E. Bradbury's analysis of the unique aspects of the culture in some of his articles in Benin Studies to get a better perspective.

If not for the actual Binis, there is really no reason why Benin would be mentioned with any more interest or admiration than any of the more minor and less prominent kingdoms that existed in Nigeria and the Guinea coast.



You are right. Thanks for another great reply, very informative.
Re: Similarities Between Yoruba And Bini (edo) Dancers by anonymous6(f): 6:52pm On Jan 06, 2012
@Ileki Idi & Lakal
beautiful pictures and videos, Please post more this is interesting
Re: Similarities Between Yoruba And Bini (edo) Dancers by odumchi: 12:15am On Jan 07, 2012
Ileke-Idi:

I'm still trying to understand how such a vibrant and powerful empire because a minority.

Binis should be one of the largest ethnicity in Nigeria, if I get my history right.


Population doesn't correspond to power. The Mongols (at the time of their conquest) were less than 1 million people in population. Yet they conquered hundreds of millions of people and forged the world's largest empire to date. What should be taken into consideration are the military tactics, ideas, and technology they had.

1 Like

Re: Similarities Between Yoruba And Bini (edo) Dancers by tpia5: 8:52am On Jan 07, 2012
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Re: Similarities Between Yoruba And Bini (edo) Dancers by NegroNtns(m): 9:19am On Jan 07, 2012
Physics, your bias has eaten so far into you that it became hard to shield your detest for Yoruba glorious history.  The Binis have failed to subordinate Yoruba to their own civilization and now what you could not obtain through a re-write you want to destroy by claiming it as the outcrop of growth or decline from greater civilizations hinterland,

You meander around thruths to support your cause and your carefully craft your wording to elevate and give your claims an air of credibility.  

Yoruba did not evolve out of Nupe or Borgu or anyone else on this continent.  We are a race of people with diverse culture and nativity but cojoined in a political commonwealth and sharing by virtue of our tongue and cosmological awakening a common root traced to AfroAsia.

Now whether the Binis want to be part of that commonwealth or not is their headache but you will not, out of contempt, succeed in diminishing our political status or ancient history.  I know what the title to this topic say and I know what history say of Bini being one of the 7 Yoruba states.  Yoruba history and grace cannot be silenced.  It was not silenced by slavery, treacherous as that was, but instead it rose from the ashes like the mythical Pheonix and found its own footing in the new world.  As Ile Ife became the new world of our migrated fathers and South America has become the new world of our stolen ancestors. . . so a new world is being created with our arts and artifacts around the globe.  

Yoruba gave life to Nupe, Yoruba gave life to Borgu. . . . but you dont understand these things.  You believe faithfully in the written words of Europeans who received their narrations and verisions from oral accounts taught to them by unlettered natives, the same teachers you dismiss as uncredible because they are not Eurocentric like you and your favorite authors.  

Stop trying to interprete Afrocentric emotions with Eurocentric logic.
Re: Similarities Between Yoruba And Bini (edo) Dancers by PhysicsQED(m): 2:40pm On Jan 07, 2012
Negro_Ntns:

Physics, your bias has eaten so far into you that it became hard to shield your detest for Yoruba glorious history.

1. Bias? What part of my post was biased?

2. My post did not display any "detest" for Yoruba history.

I wanted to attack an insinuation about the Portuguese and Benin (the "base" stuff) and the supposed relevance of this to what was being discussed earlier about a "vibrant and powerful empire".

The Binis have failed to subordinate Yoruba to their own civilization

And when did the Binis "attempt to subordinate Yoruba to their own civilization"?


"In the evening we had a visit from the king, to thank me for the
presents I had given him, and again to assure me of being welcome;
said that he wanted nothing, unless it was something that would
speedily cause the submission of the rebels. He said that he had
sent to his friend the king of Benin for troops to assist him in the
war. He added that the customary fetes or amusements would
begin in about two months, and he would be very glad if I would
stay and see them ; that he dressed now as a common man, but
after that, I should see him robed as a king. I told him I must go
on early, to get to Bornou before the rains. Mr. Houtson took this
opportunity of observing to him that he had been at the customs
in Dahomey, and inquired if the king of Yourriba put to death such
a number of people at his customs as at those of Dahomey. He
shook his head, shrugged up his shoulders, and exclaimed 'No, no
no king of Yourriba could sacrifice human beings; and that if he
so commanded, the king of Dahomey must also desist from that
practice; that he must obey him.' " - Hugh Clapperton, 1826, published in Journal of a second expedition into the interior of Africa, from the bight of Benin to Soccatoo (1829)

"It has expressly and repeatedly told us, that the monarch of this empire is brother to the king of Benin; but, notwithstanding this near relationship of the two sovereigns, not the slightest intercourse or communication is maintained between Yarriba and that power; so that at least the inhabitants of this place have informed us; and the reason they ascribe for it is, that the distance between the countries is too great. Friends and acquaintances are oftentimes called brothers in Yarriba; and to make a discinction in the above instance, they assert that Mansolah and the king of Benin 'were of one father and one mother'. We interrogated Ebo on the subject, but he soon silenced our remarks by observing that we were too inquisitive, or, to use his own words, 'that we talked too much.' " - Journal of an Expedition to Explore the Course and Termination of the Niger, (1832) by Richard and John Lander


If the two monarchs were friends and/or "brothers", and the Binis acknowledged the authority of the Oba of Benin, it immediately follows that such a thing could never have happened, historically. When you find evidence of this supposed Bini attempt to "subordinate Yoruba to their own civilization", let me know.

and now what you could not obtain through a re-write


I want to divert the topic a little to make a point here about re-writes by bringing up a relevant example.

There is no evidence anywhere in the historical record that the Binis ever acknowledged that there was an "Ooni" at Ife prior to colonialism. The idea that they acknowledged such a thing was literally invented in the third edition and fourth edition of Jacob Egharevba's book, A Short History of Benin, due to the influence of Percy A. Talbot's (who was a European) work (although even Talbot admitted that the ruler was actually called the "Awgenni" (as he wrote it) by the Edo).

That was something I took from Oba Erediauwa's story, where - in accordance with actual tradition - it was mentioned at the end of the story that the ruler at Uhe took the title of Oghene (which basically means great lord). If the Oba of Benin pointed out that the ruler was the Oghene, that was not a "re-write". It was a correction of a mistake and distortion made by earlier writers.

As early as 1505, in Duarte Pachecho Pereira's Esmeraldo de Situ Orbis (circa 1505-1508 ), we read that the Binis and those chiefs in the "pagan" territories of the Benin kingdom say that there is a great lord "who has the name Hooguanee" (Oghene), a certain ruler in the wider region that the author (Pereira) claims is regarded in the region "as the Pope is among us" (i.e. an extremely important religious/spiritual figure). We know that the word "Hoo[b]gua[/b]nee" here is "O[b]gh[/b]ene" because the same author spells U[b]gh[/b]oton as "Hu[b]gua[/b]too." Not surprisingly every scholar that has read this passage or cited it has identified that name (Hooguanee) with Oghene.

We also learn from another written account from around the same general time (from Joao de Barros) of the author's description of a short interview with a Bini ambassador to the Portuguese that this important ruler is the "Ogane" (Oghene).

Presumably this ruler was at Uhe/Ufe/Ife.

As late as the 1920s, Oba Eweka II gave H.L. Ward-Price the impression that there was an Oghene that was one of the kings that he was praying for at that (supposedly "pagan" ) cross. Not the 'Ooni", because "Ooni" was not actually mentioned by Oba Eweka II.

What follows should be obvious, but I'll break it down.


a) Why did the Binis believe for more than 400 years, and obviously even earlier than the early 1500s, that there was an Oghene, not an Ooni? I find it extraordinary that people are actually claiming that over hundreds of years, there was nothing learned about the supposed name of that other monarch that was so important.

b) Why did Oba Eweka II not "correct" Egharevba's "omission" of the word Ooni from his history book?

c) Why did Oba Eweka II, in a prayer, pray for the Oghene and other related kings (such as the Alaafin (who Ward-Price also was informed by Oba Eweka II himself that he prayed for) and himself (the Oba of Benin)) ?


The truth certainly seems to be that from every available historical source, Benin actually always held that there was another ruler with an Edo title (Oghene) that was important to their kingdom, just like they always held that another kingdom that they had important connections with was called Ogho (not Owo).  I mention this last thing because, if there was not such strong evidence for the earlier, uncorrupted name being Ogho (meaning respect) actually coming from Owo itself, and not just from Benin, people would equally accuse Binis of  also "rewriting" history anytime that they were to claim that the name was Ogho.

In fact, only recently, an Ogho (Owo) author, Chief Fama Aina Adewale Somadhi, produced an Ogho Dictionary. Yet if a Bini had said the name was originally Ogho only on the basis of their own traditional history  (Benin tradition), and that the name was corrupted to Owo in earlier times, they would probably have been accused of bias or fabrication without any real analysis of the claims.

Yet Chief Ashara (the historian of Owo/Ogho) specifically claimed that the name was corrupted and came to be called Owo "because Yoruba cannot pronounce gh" (one can check the article "New Treasures from Nigeria", Expedition, Volume 14, 1972, p.3 by Ekpo O. Eyo for the quote). It is perhaps not at all a coincidence that the few areas where Yorubas use "gh" (called the "voiced velar fricative" by linguists) have definite Edo influence, such as Owo/Ogho and Ilaje, or that the use of the "gh" sound is legion in Edo.

This issue of rewriting of history is not really as simple as you think it is.

I view the Oba of Benin's foray into destroying the Talbot & Egharevba alteration/rewrite as a bold but necessary step towards constructing a more accurate account of the history of the region. That is all. I am not making any claims about "primacy", "subordination", or anything similar or reading that from the story. I have not read anything from the Oba of Benin, or any modern Binis that is really trying to historically "subordinate the Yoruba civilization" to Benin, so I have difficulty viewing this comment as anything other than a misdirected comment.

you want to destroy by claiming it as the outcrop of growth or decline from greater civilizations hinterland,

On the contrary, since I am well aware that there is solid, well established archaeological evidence of civilization (Yoruba civilization) at Oyo many centuries before the events I alluded to involving Borgu, I could not possibly be making the claim you accuse me of making.

I simply did not claim that a "greater civilization" in the hinterland was the source of Oyo or anything else.

You meander around thruths to support your cause and your carefully craft your wording to elevate and give your claims an air of credibility.

Truths such as?

Yoruba did not evolve out of Nupe or Borgu or anyone else on this continent.

And did I claim that they did?

My point was really about the role of Borgu and surrounding northern neighbors vs. the role of the indigenous society. If you don't know of the historical alliance of Borgu and Oyo or the influence of Nupe, then that's something which you need to hit the books and discover or rediscover. I made no statements about "Yoruba evolving out of Nupe or Borgu" and I think you're essentially distorting my statement - I stated that the group itself (the Oyos) and its culture and society should really be credited for the ascendance of Oyo to a powerful position, whatever the relevance and importance of its neighbors might have been.

We are a race of people with diverse culture and nativity but cojoined in a political commonwealth and sharing by virtue of our tongue and cosmological awakening a common root traced to AfroAsia.

Now whether the Binis want to be part of that commonwealth or not is their headache but you will not, out of contempt, succeed in diminishing our political status or ancient history.  I know what the title to this topic say and I know what history say of Bini being one of the 7 Yoruba states.  Yoruba history and grace cannot be silenced.  It was not silenced by slavery, treacherous as that was, but instead it rose from the ashes like the mythical Pheonix and found its own footing in the new world.  As Ile Ife became the new world of our migrated fathers and South America has become the new world of our stolen ancestors. . . so a new world is being created with our arts and artifacts around the globe.

I think you are discussing issues that are not really directly connected with what I wrote originally.

Yoruba gave life to Nupe, Yoruba gave life to Borgu. . . . but you dont understand these things.  You believe faithfully in the written words of Europeans who received their narrations and verisions from oral accounts taught to them by unlettered natives, the same teachers you dismiss as uncredible because they are not Eurocentric like you and your favorite authors. 

Stop trying to interprete Afrocentric emotions with Eurocentric logic.


A Eurocentrist? No. That's why I argued against the obvious insinuation about the "Portuguese establishment of a base in Benin" and its supposed relevance to StarFlux's and Ileke-Idi's mention of the historical "vibrant and powerful" status of the empire.

If the connotation of what Tpia stated was too subtle, re-read the conversation preceding tpia's comment, then read her comment, and see what is really being insinuated there. If you don't even understand what I was responding to, or why I used the examples and made the comparisons I did, then there's no point discussing this any further. I am really not going to spell it out, and you should be able to understand it from the context.

1 Like

Re: Similarities Between Yoruba And Bini (edo) Dancers by NegroNtns(m): 12:05am On Jan 08, 2012
Thank you Physics for these clarifications and you should overlook my error if my charges came on too strongly. I will reply and add much later on.
Re: Similarities Between Yoruba And Bini (edo) Dancers by lakal(m): 3:54pm On Feb 04, 2012
PhysicsQED:


The truth certainly seems to be that from every available historical source, Benin actually always held that there was another ruler with an Edo title (Oghene) that was important to their kingdom, just like they always held that another kingdom that they had important connections with was called Ogho (not Owo).  I mention this last thing because, if there was not such strong evidence for the earlier, uncorrupted name being Ogho (meaning respect) actually coming from Owo itself, and not just from Benin, people would equally accuse Binis of  also "rewriting" history anytime that they were to claim that the name was Ogho.

In fact, only recently, an Ogho (Owo) author, Chief Fama Aina Adewale Somadhi, produced an Ogho Dictionary. Yet if a Bini had said the name was originally Ogho only on the basis of their own traditional history  (Benin tradition), and that the name was corrupted to Owo in earlier times, they would probably have been accused of bias or fabrication without any real analysis of the claims.

Yet Chief Ashara (the historian of Owo/Ogho) specifically claimed that the name was corrupted and came to be called Owo "because Yoruba cannot pronounce gh" (one can check the article "New Treasures from Nigeria", Expedition, Volume 14, 1972, p.3 by Ekpo O. Eyo for the quote). It is perhaps not at all a coincidence that the few areas where Yorubas use "gh" (called the "voiced velar fricative" by linguists) have definite Edo influence, such as Owo/Ogho and Ilaje, or that the use of the "gh" sound is legion in Edo.

This issue of rewriting of history is not really as simple as you think it is.

I view the Oba of Benin's foray into destroying the Talbot & Egharevba alteration/rewrite as a bold but necessary step towards constructing a more accurate account of the history of the region. That is all. I am not making any claims about "primacy", "subordination", or anything similar or reading that from the story. I have not read anything from the Oba of Benin, or any modern Binis that is really trying to historically "subordinate the Yoruba civilization" to Benin, so I have difficulty viewing this comment as anything other than a misdirected comment.

On the contrary, since I am well aware that there is solid, well established archaeological evidence of civilization (Yoruba civilization) at Oyo many centuries before the events I alluded to involving Borgu, I could not possibly be making the claim you accuse me of making.

I simply did not claim that a "greater civilization" in the hinterland was the source of Oyo or anything else.

Truths such as?

And did I claim that they did?


This is the internet, so sometimes people look at things posted as gospel, there is a need for clarification once again.


"Owo" means the same thing (respect) in Yoruba. The gh factor is not an indicator of Benin influence, because areas like the Kabba in the far northern parts of Yorubaland also use it. It's actually a geographic trend. Eastern Yorubas have the "gh" sound (ogho is money in many Eastern dialects), Central Yorubas eliminate both the gh and w sound (eeo is money in Ekiti Dialect), and Northwest Yorubas, Oyo dialect have replaced "gh" with w. (Owo is money in Oyo Dialect).

Linguists divide Yoruba into Northwest, Southeastern, and Central Dialects, as well as Northeastern and Southwestern. Even though the Southeastern area was heavily influenced by Benin, the gh sound is found in the Northeast, which was not an area of Benin influence.

The difficulty is that the predominant Yoruba dialect of today is the Oyo variety, which is known as the "most innovating," meaning that some of the consonants of proto-Yoruba (gh and gw) have been done away with, and the vowel system has also been simplified from proto-Yoruba.
Re: Similarities Between Yoruba And Bini (edo) Dancers by PhysicsQED(m): 10:32pm On Feb 04, 2012
Lakal, I saw your reply earlier in that Delta, Bendel thread and I didn't respond. But I'll respond to the post that you made there in this thread, since you've reproduced a version of that response to bring this thread back up.

Excuse my skepticism but there are a few questions that come to mind when you state that "Proto-Yoruba" (as distinct from, say, "Proto-Kwa"wink was originally chock full of "gh" and "gw" sounds. I was and am aware that the voiced velar fricative ("gh"wink can change to "w" and that was part of my point, but what I'm skeptical of is the explanation given for why the geographical trend that you've elaborated on really exists (it being only geographical, and not indicative of interaction with other groups).


"Owo" means the same thing in Yoruba.

The gh factor is not an indicator of Benin influence, because areas like the Kabba in the far northern parts of Yorubaland also use it.


Other groups besides the Edo use gh, but does it really look coincidental that most of the Yorubas that retained the "gh" sound are close to speakers of non-Yoruba languages that do use the gh sound? The question which I'm getting at is why the geographical trend that you described exists.

Also, aren't the Kabba speakers supposed to have migrated from Ife and through Ekiti at one point? Meaning, weren't they originally more central than northeastern? And didn't the kingdom of Owo extend into Kabba?


It's actually a geographic trend. 
Eastern Yorubas have the "gh" sound (ogho is money in many Eastern dialects), Central Yorubas eliminate both the gh and w sound (eeo is money in Ekiti Dialect), and Northwest Yorubas, Oyo dialect have replaced "gh" with w. (Owo is money in Oyo Dialect).


Linguists divide Yoruba into Northwest, Southeastern, and Central Dialects, as well as Northeastern and Southwestern.  Even though the Southeastern area was heavily influenced by Benin, the gh sound is found in the Northeast, which was not an area of Benin influence.

I have a question about this geographic trend though.

Assuming that these groups had a similar origin, wouldn't it be reasonable to assume that the adoption or retention of this "gh" sound among certain groups would be due to influence or interaction with other groups, whether Yoruba or non-Yoruba that did use the "gh" sound? I guess what I'm getting at is that if some of the Eastern Yorubas used the "gh" sound, wouldn't that be a possible reason some northeastern Yoruba (such as Kabba) would use the "gh" sound, rather than the "gh" sound being a widespread component of original "Proto-Yoruba" (as distinct from "Proto-Kwa"wink? Keeping in mind the claim that Owo previously extended into Kabba, this doesn't seem that unreasonable.

About the Northeast, do the majority of the Northeast Yoruba use the "gh" sound, or just the Kabba? The other Yorubas in Kogi state, for example, do they use the "gh" sound? If they don't, then I don't really see how it could be geographic only and not due to interaction with other groups.


As far as the word ogho meaning respect, I was certain that the meaning indicating respect (not money, "igho" is money in Edo) is rooted in the Edoid languages, since ogho also means respect in Urhobo, and linguists (such as Ben Elugbe) hold Urhobo to have separated from the groups now in Edo state a very long time ago, but since you brought up owo meaning respect in Yoruba, it seems that meaning is from a proto-Kwa word, not an exclusively Edoid or Yoruboid word. 

The difficulty is that the predominant Yoruba dialect of today is the Oyo variety, which is known as the "most innovating," meaning that some of the consonants of proto-Yoruba (gh and gw) have been done away with, and the vowel system has also been simplified from proto-Yoruba.

Yeah, I looked at a Yoruba dictionary (by Kayode Fakinlede) before I posted that actually and I didn't see the use of "gh" at all even though it's known that some Yorubas do use it. I guess that was an "Oyo dictionary", and not a full Yoruba dictionary.

What you're saying here is that when Yorubas were a smaller group, the "Proto-Yoruba" group, the language was full of "gh" and "gw" sounds.

If most Yorubas eliminated "gh" and "gw" consonants from the language, then the majority of them changed parts of the sound of their language.  The question which should follow is why some of them didn't change parts of their language. You're explaining to me that migration and the influence of the Oyo dialect changed the sound of the consonants in the language, and I didn't post anything with respect to that, but in light of what you wrote the question I would have is why only certain groups (Southeastern Yoruba, Northeastern Yoruba that may have interacted with Southeastern Yoruba, Itsekiri), but not others (some other Northeastern Yoruba in Kogi state, Igala) would have retained certain consonants of a proto-Yoruboid language if it were merely about migration/geography and Oyo.

It's not unusual to you that the only Yorubas that retained "gh" are in Eastern Yorubaland, whereas the Yorubas outside of southeastern and northeasten Yorubaland all altered it?

Also, since Igala is technically "Yoruboid", and since the Igala split from other Yoruba language speakers occurred quite early and the Igala are in that same northeastern area, shouldn't the Igala language retain the ancient "gh" sound, since some proto-Yoruba speakers that stayed towards the northeast also retained it? I'm not really convinced that "gh" was retained in Yoruba without outside influence, whereas you (and professional linguists) are convinced that the vast majority of Yorubas changed the consonants after migration and the Oyo dialect influence. It is speculation on my part, I admit, but I really don't think the particular geographical trend you've described is mere happenstance.
Re: Similarities Between Yoruba And Bini (edo) Dancers by lakal(m): 1:47am On Feb 07, 2012
PhysicsQED:

Lakal, I saw your reply earlier in that Delta, Bendel thread and I didn't respond. But I'll respond to the post that you made there in this thread, since you've reproduced a version of that response to bring this thread back up.

Excuse my skepticism but there are a few questions that come to mind when you state that "Proto-Yoruba" (as distinct from, say, "Proto-Kwa"wink was originally chock full of "gh" and "gw" sounds. I was and am aware that the voiced velar fricative ("gh"wink can change to "w" and that was part of my point, but what I'm skeptical of is the explanation given for why the geographical trend that you've elaborated on really exists (it being only geographical, and not indicative of interaction with other groups).



Other groups besides the Edo use gh, but does it really look coincidental that most of the Yorubas that retained the "gh" sound are close to speakers of non-Yoruba languages that do use the gh sound? The question which I'm getting at is why the geographical trend that you described exists.

Also, aren't the Kabba speakers supposed to have migrated from Ife and through Ekiti at one point? Meaning, weren't they originally more central than northeastern? And didn't the kingdom of Owo extend into Kabba?


I have a question about this geographic trend though.

Assuming that these groups had a similar origin, wouldn't it be reasonable to assume that the adoption or retention of this "gh" sound among certain groups would be due to influence or interaction with other groups, whether Yoruba or non-Yoruba that did use the "gh" sound? I guess what I'm getting at is that if some of the Eastern Yorubas used the "gh" sound, wouldn't that be a possible reason some northeastern Yoruba (such as Kabba) would use the "gh" sound, rather than the "gh" sound being a widespread component of original "Proto-Yoruba" (as distinct from "Proto-Kwa"wink? Keeping in mind the claim that Owo previously extended into Kabba, this doesn't seem that unreasonable.

About the Northeast, do the majority of the Northeast Yoruba use the "gh" sound, or just the Kabba? The other Yorubas in Kogi state, for example, do they use the "gh" sound? If they don't, then I don't really see how it could be geographic only and not due to interaction with other groups.


As far as the word ogho meaning respect, I was certain that the meaning indicating respect (not money, "igho" is money in Edo) is rooted in the Edoid languages, since ogho also means respect in Urhobo, and linguists (such as Ben Elugbe) hold Urhobo to have separated from the groups now in Edo state a very long time ago, but since you brought up owo meaning respect in Yoruba, it seems that meaning is from a proto-Kwa word, not an exclusively Edoid or Yoruboid word. 

Yeah, I looked at a Yoruba dictionary (by Kayode Fakinlede) before I posted that actually and I didn't see the use of "gh" at all even though it's known that some Yorubas do use it. I guess that was an "Oyo dictionary", and not a full Yoruba dictionary.

What you're saying here is that when Yorubas were a smaller group, the "Proto-Yoruba" group, the language was full of "gh" and "gw" sounds.

If most Yorubas eliminated "gh" and "gw" consonants from the language, then the majority of them changed parts of the sound of their language.  The question which should follow is why some of them didn't change parts of their language. You're explaining to me that migration and the influence of the Oyo dialect changed the sound of the consonants in the language, and I didn't post anything with respect to that, but in light of what you wrote the question I would have is why only certain groups (Southeastern Yoruba, Northeastern Yoruba that may have interacted with Southeastern Yoruba, Itsekiri), but not others (some other Northeastern Yoruba in Kogi state, Igala) would have retained certain consonants of a proto-Yoruboid language if it were merely about migration/geography and Oyo.

It's not unusual to you that the only Yorubas that retained "gh" are in Eastern Yorubaland, whereas the Yorubas outside of southeastern and northeasten Yorubaland all altered it?

Also, since Igala is technically "Yoruboid", and since the Igala split from other Yoruba language speakers occurred quite early and the Igala are in that same northeastern area, shouldn't the Igala language retain the ancient "gh" sound, since some proto-Yoruba speakers that stayed towards the northeast also retained it? I'm not really convinced that "gh" was retained in Yoruba without outside influence, whereas you (and professional linguists) are convinced that the vast majority of Yorubas changed the consonants after migration and the Oyo dialect influence. It is speculation on my part, I admit, but I really don't think the particular geographical trend you've described is mere happenstance.




The Proto-Yoruba theory is of course one that is full of gaps due to it being premised on the reconstruction of a now "extinct" form of the Yoruba language.  I would be tempted to ascribe a Benin influence if the "gh" phenomenon was only found in those Eastern regions where Benin influence was most prominent.  However, the "gh" and "gw" is not found in any part of Ekiti or Akure, even those areas closer to Benin. 

The "w" phenomenon is not the only dialectal variation that was begun by Oyo.  Another commonly known linguistic innovation among the Oyo/Ibadan speakers of the language is the "confusion" of the "s" and "sh" sounds, even though this was not adopted by other speakers of the language.


It still is also peculiar that a gradiant exists, from the "gh" speakers in Eastern Yorubaland, w (and gh) deleters in the center, and w-users in the West.

As for the Yorubas of kogi state, variously called "Kabba,""Okun," etc., political centralization did not develop very far, and no large part was ever dominated by Owo or any other Yoruba (or Edo for that matter) kingdom.  The biggest power players in that area would have been the Nupe kingdom.  (The same applies for many of the Akoko-Yoruba speakers, some of whom share similar dialects).  And yet still, the "gh" (and sometimes the gw) phenomem is found in that area -- look at the title of this youtube video.  In standard (Oyo) Yoruba, it would be rendered as "Ireti wa."

[flash=400,400]
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cGkQqzLQGsU[/flash]
Re: Similarities Between Yoruba And Bini (edo) Dancers by lakal(m): 1:50am On Feb 07, 2012
Some more info on linguistic innovation and how Yoruba is really a multitude of dialects.




In Lexical incidental variability in the pronunciation of the Yoruba labiovelar /w/, I examined the use of the variants of this sound segment and attempted to trace its history and development using the Chen and Wang (1975) argument that when a change takes place in language it spreads gradually through the lexicon. The argument is that in the process of change, linguistic norms diffuse differently in different words with different speakers. Chambers and Trudgill (1980, cited in Salami, 1991a: 142) observed that it is unusual to find a change which has apparently spread over around half the vocabulary of a language because the usual state of affairs for incomplete changes is that they affect almost all or a few words. Thus it is possible, for example, that while a change might have taken place in the lexicon of Yoruba within Oyo dialect, it might not have been completed in the speech of Ife dialect speakers.


Some earlier analysis of the Yoruba labiovelar /w/ had traced its variants to include /gw/ as in /ɛgwa/ : ‘ten’ in Oka-Akoko dialect, /h/ in /ha/:’come’ in Ikare-Akoko dialect, /ɣ / in /ɔɣɔ/ Owo name of a town – Owo dialect as well as in Ife dialect and / ŋ/ as in /iŋƆ/ : ‘they’ in Ife dialect and /ɸ/ as in /aɸun/: ‘miser’ in Yoruba urban vernacular (Common Spoken Yoruba). Our study of this sound segment shows that the pronunciation of present-day Yoruba /w/ is socially diagnostic and that the alternations noticed in its koine may represent the process of lexical diffusion and change. That is to say that there seems to be an ongoing change in this Yoruba speech sound which may be spreading from one lexical item (word) to another. In particular, when we examined /w/ deletion in Common Spoken Yoruba, we found that Central Yoruba dialect speakers (Ife, Ijesa, Ekiti) as well as Yoruba youngsters seem to be most /w/-deleting (Salami, 1991b: 151). The caveat is that though this may seem to be the current trend among young people and Central Yoruba speakers, it could become aborted if there are pressures of stigmatization of the speech behaviour or the need to conform with the standard written form. For now, this is not the case.

http://omoyelifeandtimes..com/
Re: Similarities Between Yoruba And Bini (edo) Dancers by PhysicsQED(m): 4:24am On Feb 07, 2012
Lakal, thanks for the clarification. Well I do admit then that "gh" is just unique to certain Yoruba dialects and not due to outside influence, though I  was skeptical of the claim that the entire "Proto-Yoruba-Igala" group had "gh" at the time they were distinct from other "Kwa" groups for the reasons I mentioned above. I guess it would make more sense to see "gh" in Yoruba dialects as a "throwback" from "Proto-Kwa" times than something retained from outside (non Yoruba) influence.

I have read in multiple places that Owo's borders extended into Kabba, but it would make sense that the majority of the Kabba Yoruba were not dominated by anyone else since they did not adopt similar patterns of political/social organization.
Re: Similarities Between Yoruba And Bini (edo) Dancers by Nobody: 8:01pm On Jul 25, 2012
Interesting videos. smiley
Re: Similarities Between Yoruba And Bini (edo) Dancers by bright007(f): 6:17pm On Jul 27, 2012
@physicsqed:Well in as much as u and d other guy ar derailing this thread,I âm learning from ur discussion.
But I beg to disagree with u on ur earlier post emphasising that the relationship resulting from d contact of the Portuguese with d Binis and other groups in pre-historic times was more or less the same.
Do u know dat
(1)Bini land was d first to be visited by d europeans(portuguese) as early as 1472.Ruy Sequeira in 1472 in Ewuare's reign and Affonso de Aviero in 1484 in Ozolua's reign
(2)The bini knigdom was also d first to in d Coast of West Africa to exchange ambassadors with å major european power(portuguese)
(3)At about 1535,some catholic Preists arrived Benin and set up å school with d permission of d Oba in his palace for d teaching of his sons and chiefs,and that it was from this school dat some Bini sons first converted to christianity.
if u read more about d contacts Bini had with d europeans in pre-historic times,u will agree dat they had more than just ån economic relation with d europeans.I even read that one of d Obas could speak portuguese fluently in d course of this relationship.
Re: Similarities Between Yoruba And Bini (edo) Dancers by bright007(f): 6:19pm On Jul 27, 2012
@physicsqed:Well in as much as u and d other guy ar derailing this thread,I âm learning from ur discussion.
But I beg to disagree with u on ur earlier post emphasising that the relationship resulting from d contact of the Portuguese with d Binis and other groups in pre-historic times was more or less the same.
Do u know dat
(1)Bini land was d first to be visited by d europeans(portuguese) as early as 1472.Ruy Sequeira in 1472 in Ewuare's reign and Affonso de Aviero in 1484 in Ozolua's reign
(2)The bini knigdom was also d first to in d Coast of West Africa to exchange ambassadors with å major european power(portuguese)
(3)At about 1535,some catholic Preists arrived Benin and set up å school with d permission of d Oba in his palace for d teaching of his sons and chiefs,and that it was from this school dat some Bini sons first converted to christianity.
if u read more about d contacts Bini had with d europeans in pre-historic times,u will agree dat they had more than just ån economic relation with d europeans.I even read that one of d Obas could speak portuguese fluently in d course of this relationship.
Re: Similarities Between Yoruba And Bini (edo) Dancers by Ngodigha1(m): 7:18pm On Jul 27, 2012
bright007: @physicsqed:Well in as much as u and d other guy ar derailing this thread,I âm learning from ur discussion.
But I beg to disagree with u on ur earlier post emphasising that the relationship resulting from d contact of the Portuguese with d Binis and other groups in pre-historic times was more or less the same.
Do u know dat
(1)Bini land was d first to be visited by d europeans(portuguese) as early as 1472.Ruy Sequeira in 1472 in Ewuare's reign and Affonso de Aviero in 1484 in Ozolua's reign
(2)The bini knigdom was also d first to in d Coast of West Africa to exchange ambassadors with å major european power(portuguese)
(3)At about 1535,some catholic Preists arrived Benin and set up å school with d permission of d Oba in his palace for d teaching of his sons and chiefs,and that it was from this school dat some Bini sons first converted to christianity.
if u read more about d contacts Bini had with d europeans in pre-historic times,u will agree dat they had more than just ån economic relation with d europeans.I even read that one of d Obas could speak portuguese fluently in d course of this relationship.
Asz monkey, so you are here as well. Enjoy the day Aszbitchy hoebag.
Re: Similarities Between Yoruba And Bini (edo) Dancers by PhysicsQED(m): 11:40pm On Jul 27, 2012
bright007: @physicsqed:Well in as much as u and d other guy ar derailing this thread,I âm learning from ur discussion.
But I beg to disagree with u on ur earlier post emphasising that the relationship resulting from d contact of the Portuguese with d Binis and other groups in pre-historic times was more or less the same.
Do u know dat
(1)Bini land was d first to be visited by d europeans(portuguese) as early as 1472.Ruy Sequeira in 1472 in Ewuare's reign and Affonso de Aviero in 1484 in Ozolua's reign
(2)The bini knigdom was also d first to in d Coast of West Africa to exchange ambassadors with å major european power(portuguese)
(3)At about 1535,some catholic Preists arrived Benin and set up å school with d permission of d Oba in his palace for d teaching of his sons and chiefs,and that it was from this school dat some Bini sons first converted to christianity.
if u read more about d contacts Bini had with d europeans in pre-historic times,u will agree dat they had more than just ån economic relation with d europeans.I even read that one of d Obas could speak portuguese fluently in d course of this relationship.

Number three is false as far as I can tell. There was no physical school set up in the palace (unless you have a source actually proving this) because all that has ever been discussed in different sources is Egharevba's claim about the Oba allowing a few churches to be built by the Portuguese in the city during the brief period when an attempt was made by the then Oba (Esigie) to Christianize Benin (so the Portuguese would agree to sell guns to Benin in large quantities, which didn't happen), and that some young boys were taught to read and write by a few missionaries in the palace, not that there was a whole school in the palace.

I never claimed that the relationship between the Binis and the Portuguese was the same as that of some other groups and the Portuguese. The fact that it was different was actually part of my point.
Re: Similarities Between Yoruba And Bini (edo) Dancers by anonymous6(f): 11:53pm On Jul 27, 2012
It is inevitable that both will have similarities since Yoruba and bini have similar paternal heritage
Re: Similarities Between Yoruba And Bini (edo) Dancers by Funjosh(m): 5:16am On Aug 14, 2013
Edo and Ondo, both ends with "do"
Re: Similarities Between Yoruba And Bini (edo) Dancers by Kimmo(f): 1:08am On Aug 02, 2014
Yay! My town peeps are reppin! Can't believe I'm just seeing this, and I don't want to believe I'm the only "omagho" (Owo indigene) on NL. Seriously?

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