A stamp showing a Portoguese impression of the Mutapa Gatsi Rusere. Notice the decidely European features. Image credit stampdata.com

A stamp showing a Portoguese impression of the Mutapa Gatsi Rusere. Notice the decidely European features. Image credit stampdata.com

ZIMSEC O Level History Notes: The Mutapa rulers who resisted Portuguese control and those who cooperated

The Mutapas who cooperated with the Portuguese

  • The following Mutapas cooperated with the Portuguese in one way or another during their reign:
  • Mavhura Mhande
  • Gatsi Rusere
  • Chikuyu Chisamarengu
  • Negomo Mupunzaguta

The Mutapas who resisted the Portuguese

  • The following Mutapas actively resisted Portuguese influence within their territories during their reign.
  • Nyambo Kapararidze
  • Mukombwe
  • Kapuratsine
  • Nyakunembiri
  • Negomo Mupunzaguta

NB: Some Mutapas e.g. Mupunzaguta alternated between cooperation and resistance at one occasion or another.

  • The spellings of these Mutapas are not certain: The Shona Language was only a spoken language in those days and only became a written language in the 20th century hence there was no standardised way to spell the names. The Portuguese chroniclers often used varied spellings and sometimes oral tradition sources vary for example Negomo is sometimes known as Nogomo and his last name is sometimes Mupunzagutu in other sources. This may be due to corruption as the story is passed down generations or may simply reflect the differences in dialects used in the State.
  • Another thing is that the Portuguese writers, who given the fact that there were/may have been contemporaries and therefore more credence would naturally be attributed to their work, often embellished their stories as seen in the silly painting of Mutapa Gatsi Rusere above. He looks more Portuguese that Bantu!

To access more topics go to the History Notes page.

 

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