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
More than 10 million people comprise the Bakongo ethnic group that lives along the coastal regions of the Congo, Peoples Democratic Republic of Congo, and Angola. They migrated to this region in the 13th century from the northeast, which would place their point of origin in the eastern Peoples Democratic Republic of Congo or the heart of Africa. The Bakongo enjoyed a highly developed kingdom and were one of the earliest groups to make contact with the Portuguese in the 15th century. Not long after, Catholicism and disgraceful Portuguese trade practices were introduced, which caused division among the Bakongo people, prompting King Affonso to write the King of Portugal proposing a resolution of the situation. This would signal the beginning of a long, tragic, and complex relationship among the Bakongo, Portuguese, and Catholicism that sent many Bakongo into the European Slave Trade in enslaved Africans, set up the Congo for ...