The ZIMBABWE PORTAL
The first Matabele War
was fought in 1893 between the British South Africa Company
military forces and the Ndebele
, king of the Ndebele, avoided outright war with the British settlers because he and his advisors were mindful of the destructive power of the European weapons on traditional Matabele impis attacking in massed ranks. Lobengula had 80 000 spearmen and 20 000 riflemen, armed with nine pound Martini-Henrys
which were modern arms at that time. However, poor training meant that these were not effective weapons. The British South Africa Company had no more than 750 BSA Police troops with an undetermined number of possible colonial volunteers and an additional 700 Bechuana
allies. Cecil Rhodes
, who was Prime Minister of the Cape Colony and Leander Starr Jameson
, the Administrator of Mashonaland also avoided war to prevent loss of confidence in the future of the territory. Matters came to a head when Lobengula approved a raid to forcibly extract tribute from a Mashona chief in the district of the town of Fort Victoria, which inevitably led to a clash with the BSA Company.
Birchenough Bridge is the name for both a bridge across the Save River (pronounced Sa've) and a village next to the bridge. Birchenough Bridge is located 62 km from Chipinge in the Manicaland province of Zimbabwe linking Mutare with Masvingo. The bridge was funded and planned by the Beit Trust, a foundation chaired at the time by Sir Henry Birchenough, it was completed in 1935. At a length of 1080 feet (329 meters) it was the third longest single-arch suspension bridges in the world at the time.
The Coat of Arms of Zimbabwe was adopted on September 21, 1981, one year and five months after the national flag was adopted.
The Coat of Arms depicts two kudus on the left and right, each standing on top of an earthly mound composed of stalks of wheat, a pile of cotton, and a head of maize. At their feet there is also a banner emblazoned with the Zimbabwe national motto (Unity, Freedom, Work). The shield itself is green, featuring 14 waves of alternating white and blue waved lines at top (chief argent), and also at the center of the shield a representation of the ancient Kingdom of Great Zimbabwe is shown. Placed behind the shield are an agricultural hoe (to the left) and an AK-47 automatic rifle (to the right), both of which are tied with twisted strips of green and gold silk. On the crest, the red star and the Great Zimbabwe Bird, which are also depicted in the national flag, are shown.
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