Here’s What A Rhodesian Encyclopedia Referred To Mbuya Nehanda As…

Mbuya Nehanda, Mashona Rebellion, First Chimurenga

Recently we managed to get our hands on an encyclopedia, Encyclopaedia Rhodesia, College Press, 1973 and were sifting through its pages to have an appreciation of yesteryear.

We managed to get a lot of insightful information, but a particular article stood out – Nyanda or Nehanda (?-1898)

Who is Mbuya Nehanda as told by Rhodesia Encyclopedia

Witch. The name Nyanda was traditionally given to the second wife of the Monomotapa. She was also traditionally a rain-goddess. In 1896 Nyanda was a powerful witch who lived in the Mazoe district. She instigated several murders and prompted many chiefs to take part in the Mashona rebellion. When Nyanda and another witch doctor (Kagubi) surrendered in October 1897, the rebellion came to an end. Nyanda was excuted in Salisbury on 27th April 1898.

Here’s her profile introduction as found on Pindula:

Mbuya Nehanda Charwe Nyakasikana was the spirit medium that was the inspiration behind the 1896-97 first Chimurenga war. She was based in the northern plateau of Mashonaland and was influential in resisting colonial encroachment and she used her religious authority to mobilise the masses against the Europeans. She was born around 1863 and she died in 1898 after being executed by the colonial authorities in Salisbury.

You can read her full profile here.

What are your views of Mbuya Nehanda as told to you when you were growing up? How different was it to either of the above versions?

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