Notes on Kilwa

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The town known to Europe until the last century as Quiloa was situated on the east coast of Africa almost exactly on the ninth degree of latitude (south). The ruins lie towards the north-western corner of Kilwa Island, overlooking a superb deep-water harbour the further shore of which is formed by the high spit of land terminating in Ras Matuso on which the village of Kilwa Masoko lies. The harbour is completely protected from the swells of the Indian Ocean by the island itself and by a barrier reef which, with a break in its centre, runs from the north-western tip of the island to Ras Matuso. According to tradition, emigrants from Shiraz1 in Persia settled at Kilwa in tkg tenth century A.D.,2 but nothing has yet been found at the site of the town which can be dated to this period or to the succeeding two centuries. The surviving buildings at Kilwa Kisiwani are to be ascribed to about the beginning of the 14th century and later. A short account of the ruins has been given by M. H. Dorman in an earlier number of this journal.
Available in print form, East Africana Collection, Dr Wilbert Chagula Library, (EAF FOS C45.N69)
Kilwa civilization, Rains, History
Chittick, H. N (1952) Notes on Kilwa