Ransome-Kuti family

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Nigerian political family
Family Ransome Kuti c1940.jpg
Ramsome-Kuti family c.1940
Parent houseOodua
Current regionYorubaland
Place of originOrile Igbein, Egba Forest
FounderLikoye Kuti
Connected familiesJibolu-Taiwo family
Soyinka family
DistinctionsNobel Prize for Literature
Lenin Peace Prize
Commander of the Order of the Federal Republic
Member of the Order of the Niger

The Ransome-Kuti family is a Nigerian Yoruba political family noted for its simultaneous contributions to art, religion, education and medicine. It belongs to the Nigerian bourgeoisie, and also has historic links to the Nigerian chieftaincy system.


The first member to bear the name Ransome, the Reverend Josiah Jesse "J.J." Ransome-Kuti, adopted it in honour of the Anglican missionary who had first converted his family to Christianity.[1] He followed his father Likoye Kuti — an Egba griot — into the musical vocation, and wrote a series of popular hymns in the Yoruba language while serving as an Anglican cleric.

The descendants of J.J.'s son, the Reverend Israel Oludotun Ransome-Kuti, and Chief Funmilayo Ransome-Kuti include a Health minister (who had also served as a university professor), a political activist (who would himself later be adopted as an Amnesty International prisoner of conscience), and five further musicians (including one who founded and led a political party and two Grammy Award nominees).

The Ransome-Kutis have been known to form marital unions with other families of the Yoruba elite: the branch descended from Chief Funmilayo Ransome-Kuti is a sept of the aristocratic Jibolu-Taiwo family of Egbaland by virtue of its descent from her, while the one descended from the Reverend Samuel Ayodele Soyinka, the husband of Grace Eniola Jenkins-Harrison, is related to the royal family of Isara-Remo through him.

Family tree[edit]

  • Olasu (c. 1750–c. 1820)
    • Jamo (c.1785–c.1850) m. Orukoloku (c.1795–c.1870)
      • Likoye Kuti (c.1820–c.1863) m. Anne Ekidan Efupeyin (c. 1830–July 1877)
        • Eruwe Lousia Kuti (c.1857–19??)
        • Josiah Jesse Ransome-Kuti (1855–1930), clergyman and the first person to use the double-barrelled family name, m. Bertha Erinade Anny Olubi (1862–1934)
          • Josiah Oluyinka Ransome Kuti (1883–c.1960)
          • Anne Lape Iyabode Ransome-Kuti (1885–c.1960)
          • Olufela Daniel Ransome-Kuti (1887–1887)
          • Israel Oludotun Ransome-Kuti (1891–1955), clergyman, m. Frances Abigail Olufunmilayo Thomas (1900–1978) (Funmilayo Ransome-Kuti), political activist
          • Joshua Oluremi Ransome-Kuti (1894–c. 1970)
          • Susannah Olubade (1898–1898)
          • Victoria Susannah Tinuade Ransome-Kuti (1899–1980)
          • Azariah Olusegun Orisale Ransome-Kuti (1902–1979)
            • Yemisi Ransome-Kuti (1947), current chief of the family
              • Olusegun Bucknor
              • Bola Soyemi
              • Oluwaseun Olasupo Soyemi
              • Eniola Anuoluwapo Mofoluwaso Soyemi[3]


  1. ^ Sasom, Ian. "Great Dynasties: The Ransome-Kutis". The Guardian.
  2. ^ Veal, Michael (2000). Fela : Life and Times of an African. Philadelphia PA: Temple University Press. ISBN 978-1-4399-0768-9. OCLC 1122451119.
  3. ^ "Eniola Anuoluwapo Soyemi". the Guardian. Retrieved 2021-04-17.

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]

  • The Shrine The unofficial website for Fela Kuti and Afrobeat Music, with biographies of Fela, Femi and Seun Kuti.