The peoples of Western Africa had a loaded and varied history and also culture long before Eu slavers arrived. They has a wide variety of political arrangements including kingdoms, city-states and different organisations, each with their own languages and culture.
The empire of Songhai and also the kingdoms of Mali, Benin and Kongo have been large and powerful with monarchs heading complex political structures governing hundreds associated with thousands of subjects. Inside other areas, political methods were smaller and weakened, relying on agreement involving people at village levels. As in 16th century war-torn Europe, into your market of power between politics states and groups was constantly changing.
Art, learning and technology flourished along with Africans were especially knowledgeable in subjects like treatments, mathematics and astronomy. Together with domestic goods, they manufactured fine luxury items inside bronze, ivory, gold as well as terracotta for both neighborhood use and trade.
Western Africans had traded along with Europeans through merchants within North Africa for hundreds of years. The first traders for you to sail down the Gulf African coast were the particular Portuguese in the fifteenth century. Later the Nederlander, British, French and Scandinavians followed. They were being mainly interested in treasured items such as precious metal, ivory and spices, particularly pepper.
From their 1st contacts, European traders kidnapped and bought Africans for sale with Europe. However, it has not been until the 17th one hundred year, when plantation owners wanted more and more slaves to meet up with the increasing demand with regard to sugar in Europe, that will transatlantic slaving became the dominant trade.