Monday, 12 December 2011

Here I am! Historical facts provided by Hon. Barrister Patrick Aigbogun


I am Princess Iyomon, daughter of His Majesty King Adolo (1848–1888) of the Great Kingdom of Benin. Here is a link to a little taster of the greatness of my ancestors, dad included: , you can view Kingdom of Benin Oba time line here: More on the BBC website:

As I was saying, my story begins a long, long time ago but as you can appreciate, I will not be as precise with dates as the rest of you can be; this is because as you very well know, we Africans until very recently never kept dairy dates or calendars, we used oral stories to pass on our history from one generation to the next. One other method we used was, our elders recount and place events against other worldwide major events of the time, I am always fascinated at their accuracy with this method.  My people are also pretty good at biographical recounts of our famous sons and daughters, they simply work backwards from the person’s date of death, recounting their feats along the way, I find this a more exciting way of recounting a person’s life achievements than starting from the date of birth, one can then only ever add the most memorable and news worthy items in it.

Though, some western historians frown at these methods of recording historical evidence, guess what, no one method can claim superiority over others in providing historical evidence for our world history. However The Great Kingdom of Benin has an advantage in this respect in that in addition to the above methods, it has also used various other methods to preserve and record its history including through art and metal works by the palace Guild of Blacksmiths and in architecture. Read about some of them here:

For dates accuracy purposes, I will start blogging from the time period of the British exploits in the palace, 1897 to be precise. But as my life did not start then, I will start a couple of years earlier to provide a backdrop to my story. Dad (His Majesty) died when I was four years old and my eldest brother crown Prince  Ovonramwen came to the throne as the new Oba (the king). The story I tell begin during his reign as I cannot remember much before then; I have got lots to tell, just stay with me.

Got to go right now,  see u later.

Princess Iyomon