Pub. date: 2009 | Online Pub. Date: January 26, 2009 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412964623 | Print ISBN: 9781412936361 | Online ISBN: 9781412964623| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Sbantrelle P. Lewis
The Fon people of present-day Benin are the people of the Dahomey Kingdom, often referred to by Europeans as Dahomeans. Their customs and history have been well documented over the past few centuries by the many people who visited their land, as well as the Fon's own oral historians. In addition to their great historical legacy, the Fon are well known for their urban organization, the history of their warrior women, and their religion of Vodu. This entry looks at their historical background as well as their religious beliefs and practices. Dahomey was a well-organized kingdom that coalesced in the 16th century, during which time it was established as a monarchy by King Tacoodonu, who conquered Abomey in the early part of the 17th century. Historical accounts tell us of the King of the Fon who gained control of Abomey and took the throne by killing Da, the king of ...