Benin Old History

By | January 2, 2023

Benin is an independent nation in Western Africa. With the capital city of Porto-Novo, Benin 2020 population is estimated at 12,123,211 according to countryaah. The area that today makes up Benin became a unit first in the 18th-18th centuries. Some parts were previously included in larger states, others in the minor states. The area was for a long time the center of the income-generating slave trade to the American continents. At the end of the 19th century, the French took over; In 1960 Benin became an independent state, then under the name Dahomey.

In the 1600s, the small kingdom of Abomey gradually became more powerful, partly as a result of the profitable trade started with European buyers along the coast. In exchange for slaves, they received fabrics, alcohol and, above all, weapons. With these, Abomey was able to attack the neighboring states and capture more slaves. First Portuguese, then French, English but also Danes founded quickly in the city of Ouidah, which became the center of the lucrative slave trade. From here, a total of nearly one million slaves were shipped out and the area where Ouidah is known as the “Slave Coast”.

  • Comprehensive guide to and popular abbreviations of Benin, covering history, economy, and social conditions.

In the early 18th century, Abomey conquered several nearby kingdoms, including Allada on the Atlantic coast. The expanded empire was called Dahomey, a name for the country that would live on until 1976. Under King Guezo’s rule (1818-1858), the empire reached its heyday, largely through the income from the slave trade. For Benin political system, please check cancermatters.

From the mid-19th century onwards, the trade in slaves was gradually stopped, as more and more European governments began to regard it as brutal and unfair. Dahomey went on to export palm oil. However, this was not as profitable and the kingdom was hit by economic downturn. The French managed to take control of the coast, and in 1892 Dahomey became a French protectorate. The area came to play a stealth role in the colony of French West Africa, with no particular economic value to the mother country. In 1958, Dahomey gained extensive autonomy within the French Commonwealth and in 1960 the country gained full independence.



Ether media is closed

December 2

One radio station and three TV stations are closed by the authorities. All the broadcasters were close to the political opposition. Formally, they are forced to cease operations because the shipments have been from other places than the original ones. The Reporters Without Borders organization says the closures are a completely disproportionate punishment for a bureaucratic wrongdoing and warns that the country will be pulled in an authoritarian direction.


President Talon takes office

April 6

Businessman Patrice Talon is installed as president. In his speech at a sports arena in the capital, Porto Novo, he reiterates his promise to change the constitution so that a president can only sit for a term of office.


Talon wants to stop re-election to the presidential post

March 25th

Benin’s new president Talon will work to change the constitution so that one person can only be president for a five-year term instead of now for two terms. He also promises to reduce the government from today’s 28 ministers to 16.

Talon wins the presidential election

March 20

The businessman and business leader Patrice Talon clearly wins the second and decisive round of the presidential election with just over 65 percent of the vote. The ruling party FCBE’s candidate, Prime Minister Lionel Zinsou, gets just over 34 percent and admits being defeated. The 57-year-old Talon is one of Benin’s most successful business leaders. Among other things, he has worked in the cotton industry and has been head of the port of Cotonou. The electoral movement has mainly been about how new jobs should be created. The vast majority of Beninis support themselves in the informal, black, sector of the economy.

Zinsou and Talon move on in the presidential election

6 March

In the first round of the presidential election, the ruling party gets FCBE’s candidate, Prime Minister Lionel Zinsou, with the most votes. He wins just over 28 percent compared to businessman and company manager Patrice Talon, who gets almost 25 percent and thus becomes the second choice. In third place is the company manager S├ębastien Ajavon with just under 23 percent. Since no candidate received at least 50 percent of the vote, Zinsou and Talon will meet in a second and decisive round of elections later in March.


The presidential election is postponed until March

February 11

The Constitutional Court decides to postpone the presidential election by one week, from February 28 to March 6. The reason is that the distribution of voting cards has extended over time.

Benin Old History