Kongo Maternity Figure on Base Congo
The Kongo peoples migrated into their current location during the 13th century from the northeast under the leadership of Wene. In 1482 the Portuguese arrived on the coast, and the Kongo began diplomatic relations which included sending Kongo nobles to visit the royal assemblage in Portugal in 1485. Kongo leaders were targeted for conversion by Christian missionaries, and often divisions between followers of Christianity and followers of the traditional religions resulted. In 1526 the Portuguese were expelled, but the Kongo peoples were then invaded by the Jagas in 1568, and the Kongo were forced to look to the Portuguese for help. The Kongo kingdom never regained its former power. In the ensuing years the Kongo alternatively fought for and against the Portuguese, eventually being colonized in 1885. The Kongo political party Abako played an important part in national independence in 1960.
Approximate Age: 20th Century
Made In: Democratic Republic of the Congo