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Today in History: The Zulus Defeated British Colonialists In The Battle Of Isandlwana In 1879

On this date in 1879, the very first Anglo-Zulu war happened where the Battle of Isandlwana was fought. Driven by their well known ruler, Cetshwayo kaMpande, the Zulus effectively overwhelmed the British and crushed them.

 

King Cetshwayo kaMpande

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The Zulus, numbering about 20,000 and armed with their traditional assegai iron spears, cow-hide shields, muskets and old rifles pulled up an unexpected attack on the British troops numbering about 1,800.

Zulu Warriors in 1882. — Photo Credit: British Library

Despite the fact that the British had far more sophisticated weapons, they just could not overpower the Zulu warriors. Over 1,300 British troops were killed and the Zulus lost a thousand men after the battle.

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Written by How Africa

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