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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Beyond Eponymy: The Evidence for Loikop as an Ethnonym in Nineteenth-Century East Africa
Author:Jennings, Christian
Periodical:History in Africa
Geographic term:Kenya
ethnological names
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
History and Exploration
External link:http://muse.jhu.edu/journals/history_in_africa/v032/32.1jennings.pdf
Abstract:During the early 19th century, three missionaries - Johann Ludwig Krapf, Johannes Rebmann and Jakob Erhardt - wrote in detail of an important pastoralist society, called Loikop, that dominated the plains of the Rift Valley (Kenya), and whose divisions included, among others, the rapidly expanding Maasai. The missionaries' documents, written during the 1840s and 1850s, are widely recognized as the earliest documentary evidence for Maasai and Parakuyo history, but they have often been neglected in favour of later written or oral sources, partly because during the course of the 19th century, Maasai expanded dramatically, demolishing and absorbing other Loikop sections. This essay makes the case for restoring the idea of Loikop pastoralists in the narratives of East African history. It argues that Krapf and his contemporaries provided a coherent and convincing picture of Loikop pastoralists during the mid-19th century, one that can be supported by comparison with other forms of evidence. Notes, ref. [ASC Leiden abstract]