Ahmed Ibrahim
5 min readFeb 25, 2023

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The Origins Of African Mythology 2

African Mythology

Africa's South and South-East are renowned for producing warriors. All who hear the names of the Zulus, Maasai, Kikuyu, and Ngoni are filled with fear.

1- The Wraiths of Satan

Shetani, a word derived from the Arabic "shaitan," or devil is the term used by Swahili-speaking people in Kenya, Tanzania, and Mozambique to refer to evil spirits. The Shetani, who haunt and possess both people and animals, resemble crooked, warped humanoids with one arm or one eye. The Ukunduka, which feeds on sexual energies, or the infamous, bat-like Popobawa, which violates its victims in their beds, are just a couple of the many variations on the depraved and terrifying ways they manifest themselves.

The angry ghosts of the forgotten dead, known as the Angatra, who prowl the area around graves, live in Madagascar's jungles alongside other equally evil spirits. The dreaded Kinoly wraith, which stalks the rice fields and village roads with fiery red eyes and razor-sharp dagger-like claws with which it disembowels men alive, transforms from a long-neglected and unplaced Angatra.

The people of Uganda were also accustomed to less frightening ghosts and spirits, like the Mizimu who haunted their hometown or the majestic Balubaale, or guardian saints, great men who continued to protect their tribe after death. The ancient dryads known as Kakua Kambuzi resided in the forests of Uganda. They were tall, lean, and reeked of incense.

2- The Heart Takers

The ever-present vampire race had settled in the South and assumed the novel form of the Lightning Bird, Impundulu; however, there was also a more material evil that hid in the fields and forests. This large black and white bird, which can conjure lightning and thunder, is frequently used by strong wizards. It takes on the appearance of a gorgeous, seductive man who has an insatiable thirst for new blood, preferably that of virgins.
If Impundulu doesn't take your blood, the Tikoloshe will. These mutable vampires, who frequently work for witches and wizards, can take the form of a small, bear-sized humanoid or dwarf, always hairy and stocky; they can also pass for human males. The

Mantindane, whose name translates to "The Tormentor," usually takes the form of an ochre-coloured dwarf with a beard and moustache, but it has been known to occasionally grow to monster size.

Also vulnerable to blood drinkers is Madagascar. The more prevalent type is tall, pale-skinned, and long-legged; it is also known as Mpakafo or Mpakara, literally, the Heart Taker and the Blood Drinker. The Vazimba have longer faces and larger lips that conceal long fangs. They are smaller than humans, and they are also pale. The princely Ramanga, on the other hand, is the leader of the Madagascar vampires, whose job it is to slurp the blood spilt by royal family members (accidentally or due to war injury). Originally servants to a human king, their custom transforms them into powerful wizards.

3- Almost Human

The dwarves and fairy folk of South Africa have some of the most fantastical forms of all the legendary humanoids, though they are not in the same league as ghosts or vampires. The Aigamucha are a race of man-eating creatures that resemble humans almost, save for the fact that they have eyes on the soles of their feet. They must stand on their hands when spotting prey because they hunt blindly. The Hai-uri are a different humanoid species that consumes men; they have only one arm and leg and move by jumping. The Kalonoro of Madagascar are ape-like, hairy, telepathic dwarves, less than three feet tall; their feet point backwards, so they are impossible to track.

The diminutive Abatwa, which was formerly the name of a tribe inhabiting Central Africa, merits their book. They are a race of fairies who ride ants and live among the grass blades. Unless you step on one, it will curse you with its last breath.

4- THE HERO’S HUNT

The plains and forests of the area are teeming with enormous creatures; these monsters are the bane of the common people but the prey of the heroes. The Inkanyamba, a serpent with the head of a horse that lives in the shadows of South Africa's great waterfalls, or the Mamlambo, a 60-foot-long creature with the body of a fish, short legs, and the neck of a snake that glows green at night, could be pursued by a warrior seeking glory. The Ilomba, a large sea snake native to Zambia that can fuse its life force with its owner's and can only be killed by a witch doctor, makes hunting it more difficult. Last but not least, Pamba, a gigantic perch that can swallow an entire canoe of fishermen, lives in the waters off Tanganyika.

The Kongamato, also known as "the breaker of boats," is a formidable flying predator that lives in Angola and Zambia. Its leathery wings can extend up to 7 feet, and it resembles a red pterodactyl. Its opposite, the Ga-gorib, a pit-dwelling, underground beast with limbs covered in leopard spots and reaching out to onlookers, dwells in Namibia's deserts. The elusive Ndzoondzoo, the zebra unicorn, may occasionally be spotted on the savannah, while the 8-foot-tall Ogo, an African Yeti with a body covered in thick, dark-brown fur, dwells on the plains of Zimbabwe. Just be careful not to kill the Nyarvirazi because once she eats fresh meat, this were-lioness—who is the cursed daughter of an unfortunate local chieftain—will transform into a human.

The hero would do well to return to Madagascar after slaying all of these monsters to confront the Tompandrano, a huge crocodile whose head glows in the dark. He would be prepared to face off against the final prey, the Grootslang, with a shield made of its massive scales.

The 50-foot-long, green, and metallic Grootslang is a South African dragon that is infamous for consuming elephants whole. It collects the diamonds, for which this area is renowned, into its cave and jealously guards them. The person who kills the Grootslang and seizes its treasure will be the real hero!

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Ahmed Ibrahim

Full-fledged Content Creator & Tech Journalist. Worked previously with top publishers like AkhbarTech, Abda Adv, and RobbReportArabia.