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Edo Historical Events, Words And Their Origins

Last Update July 3, 2020

Ewuare, the first Bini warrior king, was himself forced into exile as a young prince and nearly would not have ascended the Benin throne.  With death penalty hanging on his head as a result of some misdemeanor, he fled into the woods although regularly, secretly visiting the city of Benin at night.

The elders (Edionisen) heard about his secret visits and set a trap to capture and kill him.  Just as he was about to be caught, he escaped to the home of Ogieva Nomuekpo, who hid him in a well covered on top with leaves.  Ogieva then went to invite the elders to come and arrest Prince Ogun as he was called then.

While Ogieva was on his way to call the elders, Edo, the head servant of Ogieva's household alerted Prince Ogun about his master's diabolical plan and helped the prince to escape.  Ogieva returned with the elders to find that he had been betrayed and he severely punished Edo for this.

After several years in the bush, Prince Ogun began to grow weary of his vagabond life and accepted to be crowned Oba Ewuare of Ubini land around the mid 15th century AD.  The father's throne had been vacant for a while then and he was the oldest heir.

On the throne, one of his first acts was to reward Edo with many valuable gifts.  After Edo's death, he bought his corpse from Ogieva and buried it at the entrance to the palace's inner tower.  Then he decreed that the land of Ubini should henceforth be known and called Edo.  This was later expanded to Edo O'Evho Ahire, meaning Edo the city of love, in appreciation of Edo's love that saved young Prince Ogun's life and gave Benin her greatest king.

Bini (Benin)
The Itsekiris, another sub group in the Edo clans call us UBINI. Tradition asserts that it is derived from ILE-IBINU, which is descriptive of the exasperation and frustration encountered in Benin City, by Prince Oranmiyan of ILE-IFE. A further research may prove that, it was the Itsekiris who gave that name, to the people living in and around Benin City. The Itsekiris told the white man of the powerful overlord living in Igodomigodo. It was the Itsekiris who told the Whiteman that the name of the tribe of this powerful king was UBINI- a term which Whiteman corruptly wrote down as Benin. For example, the name of the eldest daughter of Oba Osewende, the mother of the OSULAS and the AIWERIOGHENES is today known as AGHAYUBINI. A closer examination of that name would reveal that the name is an Itsekhiri phrase-" The Ubini Lady or woman " i.e. the woman from Benin. Aghayubini was a very wealthy trader among the Itsekiris, from whence she got the money she used, is getting the throne for her brother, who became Oba ADOLO. An Itsekhiri descriptive phrase has simply over powered her original Edo name, to the extent that nobody knows anything about it now.
Usuanlele And Aiguobasinmwi
Ogagun was one of the Sons of Obegbo of Ugboko in Iyekorhiomwo, Benin Division. He was strong, keen and quite industrious During the reign of Oba Osemwede, Ogagun left Benin City to the Ekiti hinterland for trade and was stationed at Igbara Oke where he remained many years trading. He subsequently returned to Benin City early in the reign of Oba Adolo and the title Osasemwoyen was conferred On him by the Oba Adolo

He was an influential and famous magician of his day, honoured, respected and feared by the citizens through his great knowledge in magical art. He married his eldest daughter, Arokun, a beautiful lady to Oba Ovonramwen while a crown Prince, but Ovonramwen thereupon committed adultery with one of the younger wives of his father-in-law, and the issue of this adulterous union was Aiguobasinmwi who was so named in parabolic term  Ogagun for the horrible crime or offence committed by Ovonramwen while a crown Prince, his son in-law.
It was this child Aiguobasinmwi who through the will of God became Oba of Benin with the title Eweka II in 1914. It aggrieved Ogagun so much that he also named his grandson Usuanlele born for Ovonramwen by Arokun him daughter by another parabolic attribute which means that what Ovonramwen did to him can never be obliterated in his memory. Both Ovonramwen and his father, Oba Adolo, greatly resented these odd parabolic names and therefore consciously began to trouble Ogagun in all ways posible.

Whenever Ovonramwen got a slight fever and especially Oba Adolo would resort to an oracle and the predictions would be nothing else but against Ogagun on the whole especially when Ovonramwe lost one of his children. Consequently, Adolo went to Ogagun in parabolic language that he should sleep. that is, to commit suicide because he was endangering his son’s life, but Ogagun sent a reply back to the Oba that he did not wish to sleep yet and could not be compelled to do it.

Then began a series of horrible sacrifices under gone by Oba Adolo during this occasion both to preserve the life of his son and also to compel Ogagun to commit suicide. To these sacrifices Ogagun proudly uttered the following contemptuous words :- Tell Adolo to send the necessary victims to me direct to be slaughtered and eaten instead of sending them to Squares and high places because I am not a lower creature to eat sacrificial victims in the Squares like dogs. But, willingly or unwillingly, Ogagun was subsequently forced to commit suicide after a considerable time in 1882.

A Comet and other bad signs appeared soon after his death and were counted as a result of his power and skilful knowledge in the magical art. He was very rich and powerful. For this reason, soon after his accession to the throne, Ovenramwen was contemplating not accepting Aiguobasinmi, as his heir but the advice of Egiebo the Uwangue, and that of the unseen power prevailed.

Odionwere is the oldest male person at any time in Edo society. The elders are known as Owere. The oldest among the Owere is called Odionwere. The word Odion means senior- i.e Odion + Owere = Odionwere. Odionwere are the head of each community in Edo land.
People in Agenibode were the guards of the Benin Royal troops during the Idah war. Agenibode means Ago nibode or "Camp of the guard". 
According to traditional history, Esekhurhe was the second son of Ihama who at that time was living at Idumwun Ihogbe which was a stone throw from Usama the original palace of prince Oronmiyan. Usama palace is behind the inner most moat. It was the opposition of Chief Ogieamié that forced the Uzama {The seven king makers} to reside behine the moat which was not a part of the city at that time.

It was Oba Ewedo {1255 AD} that moved the palace from Usama to the present place The seasons, he did not want to stay in the mist of the Uzama and he wanted to have full control of the City.After arriving at the palace in Benin City he did not like the ancestral staff of the Oba to remain with Ihama.The Old Ihama then was always holding the Oba to ransom by feeling reluctance to come and perform his sacred duty in the city when summoned to do so and to perform the rituals at the ancestral shrine {Erinmwindu}. At the Oba's request Ihama sent his second son whose mother was the daughter of Ólótón a blood relation of Oronmiyan to live in benin City to perform on behalf of Ihama the ritual ceremonies

Oba Éwédo thereafter bestowed the Esekhurhe title on the new priest who in the course of time took over the duties of Ihama. This is the origin of the two Ihogbe group one living in Benin City and the Other living outside the City.

Sokponba Road
During the 1897 British Expedition. During the siege on Benin City It is say Chief Asoro ably defended the spot where his statue now stands He said "no other person dare pass this road unless the Oba "{SOKPON OBA}". It is this statement which has been corrupted to become SAKPONBA. The present SOKPONBA villagw and SAPONBA Road derive their names from Chief Asoro's statement
Ondo State, Akotogbo,Ikalen, Osemawe title
Prince Osawe ascended the throne with the title Oba Esigie. After the power struggle between him and his brother Arhuanran  {Goliath type stature} the powerful ruler of Udo town some kilometers outside Benin City.

Concerned about the transgression by his brother Aruanran against his monarchial authority launch a full-scale war on Udo one of the bloodiest war in Benin history The battle was fought and won by Oba Esigie.
Arhuanran drowned himself in Lake Odighi N’Udo.

Chief Osemwughe the Iyase of Udo took arm again, against the monarchial authority to avenge the defeat and the death of Arhuanran.

Oba Esigie launch a war on Udo once again .Udo was destroyed chief Osemwughe and his rebel armies fled. West of Benin kingdom now part of Yoruba land.

Oba Esigie determined to put an end to Udo rebellion once and for all. Sent royal troops under the command of Odobo and Aile to pursue them in the process the Benin royal army builds military camps {Eko} along the way some of these camps {Eko} are now towns in Yoruba land.
Some of the Camps are camp Odobo {Eko-Odobo} name after general Odobo  contracted  into Akotogboand camp Ikalo {Eko-Aile}name after general Aile was contracted  to Ikale.

Osemwughe and his militants gave themselves up; when they could not face the war machines of the Benin royal troops much longer.They were later given a royal pardons by Oba Esigie  but decided not to return to Udo. chief  Osemwughe  and his party were called Emma n’ Udo {the Udo deserters} which was later contracted to Ondo and  the leader of the militants  chief  Osemwughe was mispronounced Osemawe a title by which all Ondo monarchs are now know.

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