Today is the anniversary of the start of the 1879 Zulu-British war, marking a pivotal moment in colonial history

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Battle of Isandhlwana (1879) Natal, South Africa | Charles Edwin Fripp, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
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The Zulu-British War, which was triggered by the escalating encroachment of the British Empire onto the territory of the Zulu nation, began on this day (Jan. 11) in 1879.

Britain, enticed by the riches of Zululand and driven by the desire to consolidate its colonies, sought to subdue the perceived threat posed by the Zulu nation and its leader through the initiation of a war. Under the command of Lieutenant General Frederic Augustus, British forces invaded Zululand.

The British suffered a significant defeat, resulting in the loss of 1,300 men either dead or wounded. Despite these setbacks, the British eventually gained the advantage, leading to the surrender of the Zulu nation in July.

In 1887, Zululand was annexed by the British and later became a part of the Union of South Africa in 1910.


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