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The history of Africa is LONG and begins with the emergence of— around 300,000–250,000 years ago

The history of Africa is LONG and begins with the emergence of— around 300,000–250,000 years ago — anatomically modern humans (Homo sapiens), in East Africa, and continues unbroken into the present as a patchwork of diverse and politically developing nation states. The earliest known recorded history arose in Sudan (with the evidence of the Qustul incense burner), followed by Ancient Egypt. 

Later the Qustul kingdom was succeeded by the Kingdom of Kerma in Nubia. Other civilisations sprang up in the Sahel, the Maghreb, and the Horn of Africa.

Following the desertification of the Sahara, North African history became entwined with the Middle East, Nubia, the Horn of Africa and Southern Europe while the Bantu expansion swept from modern day Cameroon (Central West Africa) across much of the sub-Saharan continent in waves between around 3000 BC and 1 AD, creating a linguistic commonality across much of the central and Southern continent.

Africans played a significant role in the birth of the United Israelite states, the division of Israel and later the city-state of Judah. Egypt, mentioned over 700 times in the Bible, had interactions with Israel, Babylon, Assyria, and Persia. African regions and individuals are mentioned over 1,417 times, with Africans like Hagar, Joseph's Egyptian wife, and Moses' Cushite wife playing important roles. Africans were present during the Israelites' stay in Egypt, and African descendants settled in Canaan. African influence continued in the Old and New Testaments, with Africans contributing to the early church and the spread of Christianity, even reaching England through Hadrian the African. The African church also played a vital role in preserving and transmitting the teachings of early Christian fathers.

Coptic manuscripts, written during the medieval period, offer valuable historical accounts of early Christian communities in Egypt. They provide information about the lives of saints, the development of the Coptic Church, and interactions with African society. The Acts of the Martyrs and The Life of Saint Anthony are examples of Coptic manuscripts that contribute to our understanding of religious and social history in ancient Egypt.

The African Church Fathers (Tertullian, Minucius Felix, Cyprian, Lactantius, Optatus of Milevi, Augustine) belonged to the rather short-lived African Church of the first five centuries of Christianity. It was a soil mostly plowed by sufferings from persecutions and fertilized by heresies and threatening schisms.

The early African church had a significant impact on the preservation and transmission of the teachings of the early Christian fathers. They engaged in copying and transcribing manuscripts, translating texts into different languages, and utilizing durable materials like parchment. The African church established monastic libraries and schools, where scholars could study and learn. Bishops played a crucial role in overseeing the proper copying and translation of texts, while disciples passed down teachings through oral tradition. The African church actively participated in councils, produced apologists and commentaries, and involved women in copying and translating texts. Martyrs, letters, confessions, creeds, liturgy, hymns, icons, and the use of libraries and scriptoriums were all part of the African church's efforts to preserve and transmit the teachings of the early Christian fathers, ensuring their dissemination throughout the Christian world.

In East Africa, Aksum (encompassing Yemen, Eritrea and Tigray, Ethiopia), the kingdom of Zagwe, the Solomonic dynasty of Abyssinia, the Kingdom of Warsangali (1218-1886AD), and the kingdom of Mogadishu also left records about their societies. 

During the Middle Ages, Islam spread west from Arabia to Egypt, crossing the Maghreb and the Sahel. Some notable pre-colonial states and societies in Africa include the Ajuran Empire, Bachwezi Empire, D'mt, Adal Sultanate, Alodia, Aro theocracy, Dagbon Kingdom, Warsangali Sultanate, Buganda Kingdom, Kingdom of Nri, Nok culture, Mali Empire, Bono State, Songhai Empire, Benin Empire, the Oromo confederacy, Oyo Empire, Kingdom of Lunda (Punu-yaka), Ashanti Empire, Ghana Empire, Mossi Kingdoms, Mutapa Empire, Kingdom of Mapungubwe, Kingdom of Sine, Kingdom of Sennar, Kingdom of Saloum, Kingdom of Baol, Kingdom of Cayor, Kingdom of Zimbabwe, Kingdom of Kongo, Empire of Kaabu, Empire of Kanem-Bornu, Kingdom of Ile Ife, Kwararafa confederacy, Tiv confederacy, Ancient Carthage, Numidia, Mauretania, and the Aksumite Empire. At its peak, prior to European colonialism, it is estimated that Africa had in excess of 2,000 different states and autonomous groups with distinct languages and customs.

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