a memorial for all wars: the Polynational War Memorial


Uprisings in Colonial Angola

Years: 1902-1904
Battle deaths: 2,000 [1]

Nation(s) involved and/or conflict territory [note]
Angola, Portugal

Published: 2013-07-31 21:34:12 | Updated: 2014-03-09 21:56:06
Correlates of war lists the belligerents in these conflicts as Bailundu of Angola (1902-03), Kuanhama of Angola (1903-04) and Portugal.


The Bailundo Revolt of 1902 was the last attempt by the Ovimbundu peoples to resist Portuguese colonization. The revolt, prompted by the declining price of rubber, pitted rival traders against one another. However, while the Portuguese maintained ethnic and national solidarity, the Ovimbundu continued to engage in slave raids. The Portuguese suppressed the rebellion and annexed the Central Highlands.

Degredado settlers and Boer farmers stole natives’lands, impressing and deporting workers to plantations. Portuguese authorities arrested the king of Bailundo after an Ovimbundu celebration in which natives consumed Portuguese rum, allegedly without paying. The king’s advisor, Mutu ya Kevela, allied with Bailundo’s neighboring kingdoms and launched a liberation war. He told his council, rallying them to fight, "Before the traders came we had our own home-brewed beer, we lived long lives and were strong." Kevela’s troops killed Portuguese colonists and burned down their trading posts. The native revolt spread towards Bié, but Portuguese troops stationed in Benguela and Moçâmedes put down the revolt. The war ended in 1903, almost two years later, with the Portuguese victorious and Kevela dead.

Source: Wikipedia, published under the GNU FDL. Retrieved 2014-03-09

In 1904, the Kwanyama Ovambo defeated the Portuguese, eradicating the Portuguese force with assistance from German-run South-West Africa which wanted to wrest control of Angola from the Portuguese.


Reading: Fage, John Donnelly; Desmond J. Clark; A. D. Roberts; Roland Oliver (19896). The Cambridge History of Africa: 1905 to 1940. p. 521.


Notes on fatalities

[1] Battle deaths: Correlates of War, Extra-State War Data v4.0, retrieved 2013-07-31.

More about sources


NOTE! Nation data for this war may be inconlusive or incomplete. In most cases it reflects which nations were involved with troops in this war, but in some it may instead reflect the contested territory.



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