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Madrassas of Timbuktu: Welcome

Saharan El Dorado

Click here for Episode 74

Some call him the richest person in human history. Whether that's true, Mansa Musa of Mali shook up the world with his gold-laden hajj through Cairo and his university in Timbuktu.


That city at the edge of the Sahara might seem like the furthest place on earth, but it was a remarkable center of learning, home to as many as 700,000 manuscripts.


Cody Michaels from the History Unwritten podcast talks about Musa, his gold, and his journey to Mecca.  Plus poulet yassa!


Baxter, Joan. "Africa's 'greatest explorer'" in BBC News

Bell, Nawal Morcos. "The Age of Mansa Musa of Mali: Problems in Succession and Chronology" in The International Journal of African Historical Studies

Coleman de Graft-Johnson, John. "Mūsā I of Mali" in Encyclopaedia Britannica

Hamidullah, Mohammed. "Echos of What Lies Behind the ‘Ocean of Fogs’" in Muslim Historical Narratives

Levtzion, N. "The Thirteenth- and Fourteenth-Century Kings of Mali" in The Journal of African History

Mohamud, Naima. "Is Mansa Musa the richest man who ever lived?" in BBC Africa

Sogoba, Mia. "Mansa Musa: the Rejected Ruler of the Mali Empire?" in Culture of West Africa

Photograph by Francesco Bandarin

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