Checked content


Related subjects: African Geography; Countries; Portals
  • Wikipedia portals: Culture
  • Geography
  • Health
  • History
  • Mathematics
  • Natural sciences
  • People
  • Philosophy
  • Religion
  • Society
  • Technology
Main page   African countries   Tasks, WikiProjects & related portals  
Location of Africa on the world map
Satellite map of Africa

Africa is the world's second-largest and second most-populous continent, after Asia. At about 30,221,532 km² (11,668,599 sq mi) including adjacent islands, it covers 20.4% of the Earth's total land area, and with over 1 billion inhabitants in 61 territories, it accounts for about 15% of the world's human population. Modern human evolutionary theory recognizes Africa, particularly the area in and around present-day Ethiopia, as the cradle of humankind.

The continent is surrounded by the Mediterranean Sea to the north, the Suez Canal and the Red Sea to the northeast, the Indian Ocean to the southeast, and the Atlantic Ocean to the west. It straddles the equator and encompasses numerous climate areas and is the only continent to stretch from the northern temperate to southern temperate zones. Because of the lack of natural regular precipitation and irrigation as well as glaciers or mountain aquifer systems, there no natural moderating effect on the climate exists except near the coasts.

Featured article

Flag of the Central African Republic

The Saint-Sylvestre coup d’état was a coup d’état staged by Jean-Bédel Bokassa, leader of the Central African Republic (CAR) army, and his military officers against the government of President David Dacko on 31 December 1965 and 1 January 1966. Dacko, Bokassa's cousin, took over the country in 1960, and Bokassa, a military officer in the French army, joined the CAR army in 1962. By 1965, the country was in turmoil—plagued by corruption and slow economic growth, while its borders were breached by rebels from neighboring countries. Dacko obtained financial aid from the communist People's Republic of China, but despite this support, the country's problems persisted. Bokassa made plans to take over the government; Dacko was made aware of this, and countered by forming the gendarmerie headed by Jean Izamo, who quickly became Dacko's closest adviser.

With the aid of Captain Alexandre Banza, Bokassa started the coup New Year's Eve night in 1965. First, Bokassa and his men captured Izamo, locking him in a cellar at Camp de Roux. Bokassa's men then occupied the capital, Bangui, and overpowered the gendarmerie and other resistance.

Featured picture

Nautical chart of Portuguese cartographer Fernão Vaz Dourado (c. 1520 - c. 1580), part of a nautical atlas drawn in 1571 and now kept in the Portuguese National Archives of Torre do Tombo, Lisbon.
Photo credit: Portuguse National Archives of Torre do Tombo, Lisbon

A pre-Mercator nautical chart of 1571, from Portuguese cartographer Fernão Vaz Dourado (c. 1520 – c.1580). It belongs to the so-called plane chart model, where observed latitudes and magnetic directions are plotted directly into the plane, with a constant scale, as if the Earth were plane. The Moors from Spain had maps of the known world, and had been traveling to and from Mecca, Arabia for many years. In 1492, Christopher Columbus had posession of the Maps of the Moors, which had been confiscated from Andalusia and were now in service to Portuguese and Spanish Explorers. The African Moors already knew at that time, well into the 1500's, that the world was round.

Did you know ...

Akan drum
  • ... that the British Museum's oldest African-American object is the Akan Drum (pictured) that was used to "dance the slaves"?
  • ... that L. C. Lecesne rose to prominence as an activist against slavery after the government compensated him for his exile from Jamaica?
  • ...... that despite receiving a budget allocation in 2003, the public sports stadium in Gibeon, Namibia, hadn't been repaired as of December 2007?
  • ... that Kalulu, an African boy who died in 1877, was modeled in Madame Tussauds and attended Dr. Livingstone's funeral in London?
  • ... that Samuel Jackman Prescod became the first person of African descent elected to the Parliament of Barbados?

In the news

  • March 5: Chadian army: Mokhtar Belmokhtar 'killed' in Mali
  • March 3: Al-Qaeda commander Abou Zeid killed in Mali by French forces
  • February 16: 2013 IPC Alpine Skiing World Championships preparations underway
  • February 11: Gambling sites favour Cardinals Marc Ouellet, Peter Turkson, Francis Arinze as next Pope
  • February 1: British Prime Minister David Cameron makes unannounced visit to Libya
  • January 24: 'Imminent threat' as Foreign Office urges Britons to leave Benghazi
  • January 24: Wikinews interviews Aurélien Miralles about Sirenoscincus mobydick species discovery
  • January 21: AFCON 2013: Hosts South Africa draw 0-0 with Cape Verde Islands


Countries in Africa
Africa-related lists
African-language surnames
Buildings and structures in Africa
Communications in Africa
Crime in Africa
African culture
Ecology of Africa
Economy of Africa
Education in Africa
Energy in Africa
Environment of Africa
Geography of Africa
Health in Africa
History of Africa
Images of Africa
Infrastructure in Africa
Law in Africa
Maps of Africa
Military in Africa
Monarchies of Africa
Natural history of Africa
Organizations of Africa
African people
Politics of Africa
Regions of Africa
Science and technology in Africa
African society
Sub-Saharan Africa
Territorial entities in Africa
Transport in Africa
Women's rights in Africa
Works about Africa
World Heritage Sites in Africa
Writers about Africa
Wikipedia books on Africa
Africa portal
African portals
Africa stubs

Featured biography

Charles Atangana (c. 1880 – 1 September 1943), also known by his birth name, Ntsama, and his German name, Karl, was the paramount chief of the Ewondo and Bane ethnic groups during much of the colonial period in Cameroon. Although from an unremarkable background, Atangana's loyalty and friendship with colonial priests and administrators secured him successively more prominent posts in the colonial government. He proved himself an intelligent and diplomatic administrator and was eventually named paramount chief of the Ewondo and Bane peoples. His loyalty to the German Empire was unquestioning, and he even accompanied the Germans on their escape from Africa in World War I.

After a brief stay in Europe, Atangana returned to his homeland in Cameroon, which by then was a League of Nations mandate territory under the administration of the French Third Republic. The French doubted his loyalties at first, but Atangana served satisfactorily and regained his post as paramount chief. During the remainder of his life, he oversaw the Westernisation of his subjects and the improvement of his domains despite the erosion of his powers due to French policies and native unrest. He never advocated resistance to the European powers, preferring to embrace European civilisation and technology in the service of African interests.

Topics in Africa

Culture Architecture ( World Heritage Sites) · Art · Cinema ( Film festivals · List of films) · Cuisine ·
Etiquette · Languages · Literature ( Writers by country) · Music ( Musicians) · Religion
Demographics People · Countries by population · Countries by population density · HIV/AIDS ·
Urbanization ( List of most populous cities)
Economy Countries by GDP · Countries by HDI · Central banks and currencies · Poverty · Renewable energy · Stock exchanges · Natural resources
Geography Countries · Ecology · List of impact craters · List of islands · List of rivers · Regions
History Colonisation ( European exploration · African slave trade · Scramble for Africa·
Decolonisation · Economic history · Military history ( List of conflicts)
Politics African Union · Elections in Africa · Human rights in Africa · Pan-Africanism
Society African philosophy · Caste system · Education · Media ( List of radio stations · List of television stations)
Sport African Cricket Association · All-Africa Games · Australian rules football · FIBA Africa ·
Confederation of African Football ( African Cup of Nations) · Stadiums by capacity ·
Confederation of African Rugby ( Africa Cup) · Tour d'Afrique
Years 2005 in Africa · 2006 in Africa · 2007 in Africa

Related portals

Africa (orthographic projection).svg
Berber flag.svg
Musee-de-lArmee-IMG 0976.jpg
Pyramide Kheops.JPG
Africa/Subportals Berbers Colonialism Egyptology Military history of Africa
  • What are portals?
  • List of portals
  • Featured portals

Retrieved from ""