Durbi Takusheyi: a high-status burial site in the western Central bilad al-sudan


Gronenborn D, Adderley WP, Ameje J, Banerjee A, Fenn T, Liesegang G, Haase C, Usman YA & Patscher S (2012) Durbi Takusheyi: a high-status burial site in the western Central bilad al-sudan. Azania: Archaeological Research in Africa, 47 (3), pp. 256-271.

Durbi Takusheyi is a burial site composed of at least eight mounds located between the modern towns of Katsina and Daura in northern Nigeria. Parts of the mounds were first excavated in 1907 by Herbert Richmond Palmer in cooperation with the Emir of Katsina and later again in 1992 in the course of a German research project under the lead of Dierk Lange, Bayreuth. After the 1992 excavation, the retained blocks were stored in the Jos Museum, Nigeria, for further analyses. In 2007 the Ro¨misch-Germanisches Zentralmuseum (RGZM) and the National Commission for Museums and Monuments in Nigeria(NCMM) started a project with the objective of completely restoring and analyzing the excavated artefacts. While the remains of the first excavation appear to be lost with only minimal information preserved, the three mounds excavated in 1992 each contained a single interment in the centre of the mound, all three with various burial goods produced from inorganic (metal, glass, stone, cowries) and organic material ( cloth, wood, hides). Many artefacts are of regional provenance but some were also imported from distant regions of the Islamic world. Following the currently available radiocarbon measurements, one group of the burials would date to the earlier fourteenth century AD, and judging from typology and art history another burial dates to the later fifteenth/early sixteenth centuries. The site thus covers a crucial phase in history during which the Hausa city states emerged, indicating shifting contacts to the Mediterranean and to the Middle East.

Northern Nigeria; Katsina; Daura; Hausaland; emerging e´lites; citystates; Islam

Azania: Archaeological Research in Africa: Volume 47, Issue 3

Publication date30/09/2012
PublisherTaylor and Francis