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Ashanti (äshänˈtē) or Asante (äsänˈtē), historic and modern administrative region, central Ghana, W Africa. The region is the source of much of Ghana's cocoa. It is inhabited by the Ashanti, a matrilineal Akan people who constitute one of Ghana's major ethnic groups. Before the 13th cent., Akan peoples migrated into the forest belt of present-day Ghana and established small states in the hilly country in the neighborhood of modern Kumasi. By the late 17th cent. the states had been welded by the Oyoko clan into the Ashanti confederation, with the capital at Kumasi and the Oyoko chieftain as king. After subduing neighboring states the confederation came into conflict with British settlements on the coast, although treaties of friendship were negotiated (1817, 1820). A series of Anglo-Ashanti wars in the 19th cent. ended with the defeat of the confederation (1896) and its annexation (1901) to the Gold Coast colony. The British exiled King Prempeh I to the Seychelles and, in spite of great resistance, broke up the confederation. It was restored in 1935. In 1945 the Ashanti were given representation in the executive and legislative councils of the Gold Coast. They supported an unsuccessful attempt to give Ghana a federal constitution in 1954 and resisted the centralizing measures of the Nkrumah government. The Ashanti king remains influential in S Ghana. The Ashanti are noted for the quality of their gold work and their colorful kente cloth, and are famous for the gold-encrusted stool that is the symbol of the kingship.


See R. A. Lystad, The Ashanti (1958, repr. 1968); R. Battray, Ashanti (1923, repr. 1971).

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



Federation of the Ashanti, an early feudal-type state that flourished on the territory of the Gold Coast (now Ghana) from the late 17th century to the 19th century. The state was formed in 1697–1701. Agriculture and household industries played a large part in the economy of Ashanti (pottery, woodcarving, weaving, metalworking, etc.). The slave trade and gold trade were practiced. The supreme chief (asantehene) stood at the head of the state, with his residence in the town of Kumasi, and local chiefs (omanhene) headed the various districts. In 1896, Great Britain seized Ashanti in the course of the seventh Anglo-Ashanti war and concluded a treaty with various tribes establishing a protectorate. The Ashanti government then ceased to exist. After the 1900 Ashanti uprising against the British colonial rule was put down, Britain incorporated the territory of Ashanti into the Gold Coast colony in 1901. In 1935 the British formally restored the Ashanti state, but power in the country actually remained in the hands of the British governor of the Gold Coast. After the formation of the independent state of Ghana, the territory of Ashanti obtained the status of a region under the 1957 constitution.


Potekhin, I. I. “O feodalizme u ashanti.” Sovetskaia etnologiia, 1960, no. 6.
Potekhin, I. I. Stanovlenie novoi Gany. Moscow, 1965.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.



The Ashanti, also known as the Akans, are a people who live in the central region of Ghana. As with other African societies, for the Ashanti dreams hold the status of superior realities, and, it has been suggested, for some individual Ashantis dreams have as much if not more reality than waking experiences. R.S. Rattray, for example, has reported if a husband learns that another has dreamed of sexual intercourse with his wife, he will sue the dreamer for adultery because their souls are believed to have had sexual intercourse.

In an ethnopsychiatric study of the Ashanti, M.J. Field focuses on the distinction frequently made between “free” or spontaneous dreams and stereotypical dreams that is, those dreams individuals have repeatedly. Field describes how certain common elements of dream narratives indicate what they represent. For instance, in a dream the theme of being chased—whether by a deity, an animal, or even a weapon—indicates an individual who is afraid of retribution for a sin.

The Dream Encyclopedia, Second Edition © 2009 Visible Ink Press®. All rights reserved.


an administrative region of central Ghana: former native kingdom, suppressed by the British in 1900 after four wars. Capital: Kumasi. Pop.: 3 187 607 (2000). Area: 24 390 sq. km (9417 sq. miles)
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
References in periodicals archive ?
A photo exhibition of the late Opanin Edusei and his family was put on to recollect and share memories of the late Ashante elite.
'I have no intention at all of being an indifferent spectator, if the distant Powers hold the power of dividing up Africa, Ethiopia having been for the past fourteen centuries, an island of Christians in a sea of Pagans.' (2000:4) Given the crucial historical context, the letters the Emperor of Ethiopia, Menelik, and that of the thirteenth king ruler of the Ashante, Prempeh I, were of paramount importance.
Hazel said Imani and Ashante, 17, who have just passed their GCSEs at St Teilo's Church in Wales High School, often have the most severe pain in their shoulders.
Belgrade Theatre in Coventry has got a youth workshop over half term involving Halloween activities, from left, Luke Thomson 13, Ashante |Hurst-Walker, aged nine, community and education apprentice Emma Madden and Oliver Blackwell, aged nine
| Ashante Chhina-Chonyera, 9,Fari, |8, and Nyasha, 7, and Ashley Chhina-Beverley, sisters of Natasha
Ashante Manetti, External Communications Practitioner for Telecom Namibia handed over a N$45,000 cheque as the second main sponsor of the conference.
For instance, in Tanganyika, it was introduced by Governor Donald Cameron in 1926, and in the Ashante protectorate by James Maxwell.
Gardiens: Soulama Abdoulaye (Ashante Kotoko - Ghana), Diakite Daouda (FC Mounana-Gabon), Kabore Mohamed (ASFA-Y-BF) Defenseurs: Bambara Narcisse (FC Concordia-Roumanie),Dayo Issoufou (EFO-BF) 6-Kone Bakary (Lyon-France), Yago Steve (Toulouse-France), Koulibaly Keba Paul (Al Shorta-Irak), Lingani Jean Noel (Horoya AC-Guinee), Panandetiguiri Madi (Chippa United-RSA), Balima Benjamin (Scheriff Tiraspol-Moldavie), Gnanou Ibrahim (FC Mounana-Gabon),Gouo Issa (Santos FC-BF) Milieux de terrain: Nacoulma Prejuce (Gornic Zabrze-Pologne),Yedan Moussa (Coton Sport Garoua-Cameroun), Rouamba Florent (a l'essai au FC Lens -France) Kabore Charles (FC Kuban-Russie), Kone Djakaridja (Evian T.
Prime, RB Davin Meggett, C Rick Schmeig, S Ashante Williams and CBs Johnny Adams and Allen Chapman.
Moses variously "wanders" from Egypt to Europe or across the continent to West Africa, where he is hybridized with Ashante and other West African religions as "Damballah" to accompany Africans in the diaspora of the Atlantic slave trade, showing up in Haiti as "Papa Labas" (Rowe, Literary Culture 266-68).
would like to thank Ashante Kirby, Pennsylvania State University
(1881) A Dictionary of the Ashante and Fante Language called Tshi (Chwee, Twi).