Limba people (Cameroon)

Limba People (Cameroon)

Limba people (Cameroon)

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The Limba (or Malimba) are an ethnic group of the Republic of Cameroon. They belong to the Sawa peoples, those of the Cameroonian coast.

History and geography

Limba and Duala oral history traces their ancestry back to a man named Mbedi. His sons, Ewale and Dibongo, parted from a place called Piti on the Dibamba River. Ewale moved to the mouth of the Dibamba with his followers and then northwest to the east bank of Wouri River estuary. Meanwhile, Dibongo and his companions migrated southeast to the Sanaga River and then split up, some heading upstream with Dibongo and others moving downstream with a man named Elimbe. Ewale's people became the Duala, and Dibongo's the Limba.Fanso, History, 49-50, 52. Limba territory lies southeast of the Duala, east of the Wouri estuary, to the mouth of the Sanaga River, and up its course to Edéa in the Sanaga-Maritime division of the Littoral Province. Fishing is an important part of the diet.

The Limba emerged as prominent traders during the 16th and 17th centuries. The Limba purchased goods and slaves from interior groups and sold these items to the Europeans, typically aboard their ships (and later at mainland factories or stores). In exchange, the Europeans provided alcohol, gunpowder, guns, mirrors, shoes, textiles, and tools. When the Limba king, Pass All, ceded his territories to the French, British traders expressed the urgency of annexing the Duala territories north of there. In July 1884, however, German...
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