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the site of an ancient city in West Africa, north of the city of Nioro. It is located in the extreme south of Mauritania. In 1913 the ruins of the capital of the medieval state of Ghana (fourth century to the early 13th century) were discovered at Koumbi Saleh. The capital was an important trading center in the Western Sudan and the focus of trade with the nomads. Salt mined in the Sahara was exported from Koumbi Saleh to the savanna and tropical forest zone, and merchants from the North African countries purchased metals (particularly gold) and slaves in the city. Excavations conducted in 1949–50 revealed city buildings, burials (including numerous Muslim ones), iron implements, pottery, and beads (the last dating from the 11th century).
REFERENCESOl’derogge, D. Zapadnyi Sudan vXV-XIXvv. Moscow-Leningrad, 1960.
Mauny, R. Tableau géographique de I’Ouest africain au Moyen Age: D’après les sources écrites la tradition et l’archéologie. Dakar, 1961.