Essay on the Difference Between Chiefdoms and Tribes


The Swazi of Southern Africa and the Mayogo of Northern Democratic Republic of Congo represent two altered chiefdoms that alive in Africa. The two chiefdoms allotment added with states than with tribes, a acumen which explains its actuality aural the abuttals of abounding states in Africa. The Swazi chiefdom is anchored in the southern Africa in a landlocked country that was aphorism according to the chiefdom rules alike with the advancing of the white man and accepting ability 1968. The chiefdom allotment abounding aspects with the state, a acumen which explains the absence of battle that inflicts the two institutions in allegory with the accompaniment and the tribe. The analysis cardboard will assay the two chiefdoms of Mayogo and Swazi through the use of allegory with the accompaniment and the association by absorption on such credibility as kinship, marriage, citizenship.

The Mayogo

The Mayogo are bodies who alive in the Northeast of the Democratic Republic of Congo, they acclimated to alive apart as chiefdom until the 19th aeon back the country was invaded by the Mangbetu who formed the accompaniment beneath which the Mayogo were governed. However, the centralized diplomacy of the chiefdom were in ascendancy by the chiefs. The Mayogo allege a accent that belongs to the aforementioned ancestors of Swazi which is Bantu, best of them access adapted from animism to Christianity mainly Catholicism. The areas in which the Mayogo alive access assertive freedom as the bodies pay adherence to the Chiefdom. Although the banderole was credible in the documentary but no adherence is paid to the civic anthem. One of the reason, why the accompaniment of Democratic Republic of Congo, aforetime accustomed as Zaire is not bother by the attendance of the chiefdom of Mayogo in its breadth is because it is not bedevilled by it in accession to the actuality that the chiefdom provides aegis to its citizenry which the accompaniment cannot allow to due to the all-inclusive credible of the breadth and its around to war zones exemplified by the refuges that alive in the country in accession to a civilian war that it is undergoing.

The Swazi

The Swazi took their name from their king, Mswati, Swaziland is a chiefdom that is organized into bifold absolution with the baron and the queen at its head, the baron is refereed to by the Swazi as Ngwenyama (Lion) while the queen is accustomed as Ndlovukazi (Lady Elephant).[1] The chiefdom is based on accustomed ancestor and absurd kinship, like the accompaniment the chiefdom is based on a amusing arrangement amid the citizenry of Swaziland who access top pay adherence to the baron by abject his orders, accouterment appurtenances and services, and advantageous taxes in acknowledgment for aegis from outsiders mainly Zulu and Shaka. For instance, Baron Sobhuza maintained the adherence of his citizenry by attention them from Shaka to the admeasurement that he beatific his daughters to be affiliated by Shaka alive that they will be dead already they are pregnant.[2] The almsman of baron Sobhuza, Mswati, was larboard with “a able Kingdom, admired and feared by adjoining tribes, with a centralized political arrangement authoritative several bags of bodies broadcast over areas extensive far above the boundaries of avant-garde Swaziland.”[3]

The absorption of Europeans to arrive the breadth came from two parties the Dutch Boers and the British, in 1865 the two parties are activity to acquisition an alibi to access the country which to accommodate accord and end civilian war. The year coincided with the afterlife of Baron Mswati which entered the country into a civilian war due the animosity of who is activity to become the new king. Eventually Mdandzeni was the baron and alike during his administering alternation was present.[4]

A Allegory amid Chiefdom and Tribe

The association and chiefdom access a agnate aspect in agreement of their amount of raiding while the Swazi during the administering of baron Mswati acquired a acceptability of alarm and abhorrence abounding of their warriors were indulging in raids with adjoining chiefdoms and the annexation was broadcast by the King.[5] Likewise, the Famous association arch Auda abu Tayi the baton of the Howeitat association who said that he is like a river to his bodies acceptation that all what he access from raids is activity to be redistribute to his tribe.[6] Moreover, Hospitality is accession appropriate that aggregate amid tribes and chiefdom. Apropos chiefdom, the headman is accustomed to be magnanimous.[7]

Kinship is an important agency that distinguishes chiefdom from the accompaniment and put on according basement with the tribe, it acclimated to ascertain who is activity to be affiliated from a accurate actuality and alternative affair as it is declared by Hilda Kuper “kinship by coast and ties by alliance access behavior in a abounding cardinal of situations; they actuate breadth and with whom a actuality lives, his ambit of accompany and enemies, whom he may or may not marry, the positions to which he is entitled.”[8] Apropos tribes the alternative is actuality accustomed to aboriginal cousins but instances of incest are not absent admitting rare, both amid Tribes Swazi, abnormally the baron who is accustomed as he is “the alone man acceptable to ally a association sister.”[9] This arrangement of alikeness was kept alike back the British administering was in the country, it was alone a accustomed move to absorb the bifold absolution as a distinct government for the accomplished country of Swaziland.[10]

The accent accustomed to law seems to be a affection aggregate by both the association and chiefdom as the association regulates its problems according to its affiliated law while the Swazi “have a awful developed acknowledged arrangement and a graded bureaucracy of courts that accompany almost with the political structure.” In case of the Swazi seems to be alive with the accession of the accompaniment while it is the adverse for tribes as in some instances animus requires killing a actuality as compensation. While the Swazi differentiate amid clandestine affairs such as annexation and cases that crave afterlife amends such as murder. In The above the accusable affair pays advantage anon to the ill-treated actuality while on the closing the advantage is accustomed to the baron as he “the adumbrative of the state.”[11] Hilda Kuper mentioned an archetype that would allegorize this dichotomy of law amid the chiefdom. It involves the case of a woman alleged Velepi Hlatshwako who bare her husband, Alpheus shongwe, afterwards 20 years of alliance because of his bad analysis of her and eloped with her lover, Isauk Mabuzo. In adjustment for the lover to ally the Velepi he has to pay lobola (bride price) to her ancestors which it refused. The amount is activity to exacerbates back Velepi had a babe and Alpheus asked for both of them as a he paid lobola. This time the two brace became catechumen to Wesleyan abbey accordingly the amount was taken to altered cloister and in the end the cloister declared that Velepi “soiled the law.”[12] The accompaniment and chiefdom law tend to overlap and belie anniversary other, about the likelihood of activity adjoin the states is beneath than the association breadth accompaniment aphorism is absent. For instance, the Swazi bodies who assignment in the administering or “white-controlled bureaucracy”[13] but their adherence avalanche beneath their chiefdom.

One of the above aberration amid chiefdom and association lies on the actuality that the way the affiliated arch called has annihilation to do with his blue-blooded ancestry or ancestors instead what amount is his acceptability for hospitability, account and acquaintance while for the Swazi as able-bodied as the Mayogo of Northern Democratic Republic of Congo the arch is ancestral position which is banqueted alone by inheritance. Therefore, antagonism and animosity is above aspect of chiefdom and this best credible during the afterlife of Kind Mswati, that resulted in a civilian war amid his sons admitting affiliated bodies tend to accept a arch of their association based on reputation, which agency that already the arch is actuality credible as base the affiliated bodies outstrip of his administration automatically by not alert to him. And alike the way the association vie their arch is altered from chiefdom whereby the Swazi attention their baron as a ancestor and not a dictator.[14]

Marriage is an important academy aloft which a the addict of the baron is taken, polygamy is abounding amid kings and in adjustment to abstain battle amid kings` sons it is the adolescent of the senor wife that is advantaged to the head however, advantage is not consistently absitively by age but by alternative factors as it is acicular out by Hilda Kuper “Among the Swazi elite the aboriginal wife is never the capital wife. Advantage in alliance brings assertive advantages during the headman`s lifetime, but aloft his afterlife alternative factors are considered. The best important is pedigree, and the babe of a baron or arch arch about takes antecedence over all alternative wives.”[15] The Swazi developed a developed arrangement of assumption to assure the approaching baron from the animosity of his brothers to the admeasurement that the aboriginal son of baron is never activity to booty his place, Advantage and full-blooded comedy an important role in selecting the approaching king.[16] Apropos affiliated law, it is actual altered from accompaniment law and does not tend to be alloyed as is the case with both Swazi and Mayogo as ability of the chiefdom law and cloister action are allotment of the circadian activity of chiefdom people.[17]

A Allegory amid the Chiefdom and the State

Just like the state, the country of Swaziland is disconnected into altered districts. The queen shares ability with the king, about her branch is anchored in the breadth of domiciliary and rituals. Clashing Western countries, adoration in Swaziland is an important aspect of the country that is absolute by the queen; it is one of the characteristics that differentiate an conflicting from a Swazi. The Swaziland chiefdom maintains its political arrangement and insures its adaptation by afterward a arrangement of aggressive abhorrence based on executions so that any adversary would anticipate alert afore aggravating to access the country. The additional way is advance birth through marriage, whereby women comedy a above role in assumption mainly the queen mother, as the accouchement of a arch wife are supervised and alone from activity alfresco to assure them from abracadabra spills. In alternative words, the baron rules alfresco while the queen rules central the household. Alike admitting the country is big, the baron assure that it stays in adjustment by adding into commune and absolution bounded chiefs (sikhulu) administering them and in cases of commune that the baron does not assurance he appoints his brother or his bisected brother to aphorism them, a convenance acclimated during the administering of Baron Mswati, back the Kingdom of Swaziland aphorism over a ample breadth and access a reputation.

According to Hilda Kuper “power moves bottomward through a alternation of British-appointed admiral on the one ancillary and the acceptable bureaucracy on the other, with battle centered in a few arch personalities. Accomplished Swazi, including some of the acceptable arrangement for extensive accelerated and above decisions, but they are gluttonous to body on assertive accustomed foundations and do not appetite an apery of built-in techniques developed in conflicting context.”[18] In a chiefdom both ability can be aggregate with states with baby incidents of conflicts compared to tribes, and best of the time back the chiefdom laws came to belie laws of the states it is usually apprenticed by claimed interest. For instance, the acumen for alteration the Westminster architecture that the British brought to Swaziland has to do with the abortion of a Prince Mfanasibili in elections adjoin Ngwenya, accordingly to get rid of his battling he begin the artifice that back he is a South African he was abandoned to the bound in may 25 1972 and because the conistution was in favour of Ngwenya apropos his deportation, it was additionally changed.[19]

The ability of Swaziland brought the botheration of who is advantaged toser ve in an arrangement with such factors as adherence and ancestors arena a above role in arrangement the accomplished Swazi who are not from a aristocratic alikeness airish a botheration to the aristocratic accumulation and aloft their affair over apprenticeship as a agency to defended their positions. The adverse is credible in the Mayogo of Northern Democratic Republic of Congo. Clashing the British colonies breadth apprenticeship was emphasize, the French colonies relied on aggressive bodies to aphorism on their colonies

Citizenship is an important aspect of defining who is Swazi and who is not, in convenance all those bodies advantaged to be Swazi access the privileges of security, that is aegis from enemies, they can access land; and best chiefly they can access the civic mark in adjustment to abrasion Swazi absorb which is “a aperture in the lobes of the ears.”[20] The chiefdom shares with the accompaniment the abstraction of aborigine and who is advantaged to be a citizen? Such a catechism is activity to accession problems in Swaziland due to its adapted citizenry and the alteration abstraction of allegiance, as it arrangement by which Swazi accurate their adherence to their king. However, the arrival of abounding non-Swazi who were brought by the white settlers brought the affair of adherence to the ahead as they appeal their adherence to their administration instead of the king, in accession to their altered traditions and ability which makes the Swazi feel threatened about their cachet to the admeasurement of putting the accusation on abomination on the non-Swazi population.[21] According the Swaziland law “Citizenship was a privilege, not a right; a commitment, not a label,”[22] which agency that factors such as language, history, chase and adoration appear to ascertain who is a Swazi and who is not, accordingly citizenship is absolute and not inclusive. Accession botheration that is brought the affair of citizenship is the actuality that South Africa is home to 700, 000 Swazi bodies which indicates the botheration of the baron to admission them citizenship after acreage abutment and best chiefly the botheration of bifold citizenship as they are both citizens of South Africa and additionally advantaged to the citizenship of Swaziland, while the non-Swazi who alive in Swaziland are not admired as citizens as they abridgement the appearance of a Swazi.

Land is an important accepts in Swaziland in accession to pastorals abiding in its “cattle complex”[23] due to the accent of lobola which is usually bidding in cattle’s. The acreage airish to be a botheration in 1907 as 45% of the acreage in Swaziland was endemic by non-Swazi attributable to the Acreage Proclamation of 1907.[24] Unlike, its adjoining country Zimbabwe, the Swaziland government acknowledgment to ameliorate the acreage by demography into application the bounded Swazi after alienating the white community

A above basic of the accompaniment in accession to ascendancy and breadth is cartel over the use of violence. The acumen amid badge and soldier does not avenue in Swazi chiefdom it was alone brought by the British. The Swazi await on emabutfo to accommodate protection; they are a mix of soldier and police. About by the advancing of the British they alien badge force which was beheld as a battling by Emabutfo.[25] About the role of Emabutfo is activity to be underscored due to the bounded incidents that occurred in Ethiopia breadth Haile Selassie was deposed and Mozambique breadth the left-wing Samora Machel was accustomed as the baton of the country. These contest prompted Swaziland to advance an army by relying on emabutfo. [26]


To conclude, the chiefdom allotment abounding point with tribes and states. however, the actuality it has abounding point to allotment with the accompaniment that the association accomplish it adjustable to survive alike aural the abuttals of the accompaniment because it does not blackmail the enactment of the state. It shares with the accompaniment the amusing arrangement beneath which the citizenry pays adherence through accordance and taxes in acknowledgment for protection. And clashing the association the chiefdom does not access the botheration of boyhood group. Because alike in their affair not everybody in the chiefdom is arrive in the abstruse affairs save the elders, admitting in a affiliated association every actuality who is an developed has a adage that the arch has to booty into application as he has the ability to access accommodation authoritative but to the admeasurement of authoritative an order.


  • “Chief Anga Ganga Kangolo” Lost Kingdoms. Discovery Channel, 1988.
  • Kuper, Hilda. The Swazi: a South African Kingdom. Mason, Ohio: Cenage Learning, 2002.
  • Lawrence of Arabia, DVD, Directed by David Lean. 1962.

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