"...The Emperor stood peering the window that dominated one wall. From there, he could see the nearby merchant district and government buildings. Beyond the well maintained and pleasing look of the government and merchant district, on the horizon, he could see the inner city slums..." -Vilageidiotx, RP Post
Addis Ababa is the Capital of Ethiopia and seat of the Ethiopian Emperor. Situated in the Ethiopian highlands, Addis Ababa is a relatively young city; only ninety years old. Despite the cities youth, it is arguably onf of the most, if not the most, important city on the continent in terms of politics. Addis Ababa seen a period of rapid growth and industrialization during the reign of Yohannes Iyasu, though the Civil War had cut into it's economic stability. The end of the civil war found the city in the hands of Yaqob Yohannes, though not before a violent revolt against Yaqob's brother Sahle, who was Emperor before his brother started to win the civil war. The revolt, known as "September Days", tore the city apart as Yaqobists attempted to kill the remaining Sahlians. The September Days Revolt was put down when Hassan, leader of the Ethiopian military and a supporter of Yaqob, took control of the city.
- 1 History
- 2 Geography
- 3 Climate
- 4 Landmarks
The site of Addis Ababa was chosen by Empress Taytu Betul and the city was founded in 1886 by her husband, Emperor Menelik II. The name of the city (ኣዲስ ኣበባ) was taken from parts of the city called hora Finfinnee ("hot springs") in Oromo. Another Oromo name of the city is Sheger. Menelik, as initially a King of the Shewa province, had found Mount Entoto a useful base for military operations in the south of his realm, and in 1879 visited the reputed ruins of a medieval town, and an unfinished rock church that showed proof of an Ethiopian presence in the area prior to the campaigns of Ahmad Gragn. His interest in the area grew when his wife Taytu began work on a church on Entoto, and Menelik endowed a second church in the area.
However the immediate area did not encourage the founding of a town due to the lack of firewood and water, so settlement actually began in the valley south of the mountain in 1886. Initially, Taytu built a house for herself near the "Filwoha" hot mineral springs, where she and members of the Showan Royal Court liked to take mineral baths. Other nobility and their staffs and households settled the vicinity, and Menelik expanded his wife's house to become the Imperial Palace which remains the seat of government in Addis Ababa today. The name changed to Addis Ababa and became Ethiopia's capital when Menelik II became Emperor of Ethiopia. The town grew by leaps and bounds. One of Emperor Menelik's contributions that is still visible today is the planting of numerous eucalyptus trees along the city streets
Addis Ababa Under Iyasu V
Iyasu V continued using Menelik's capitol despite his base of support being primarily in the muslim Harar. Throughout his reign, traditionalist nobles attempted to retake the capitol, but no rebellion managed to touch the city itself. Originally dominated religiously by the traditional Ethiopian Orthodox church, Iyasu's aggressive campaign to dechristianize the country especially affected Addis Ababa; an effect still seen to this day despite the weakening of the anti-christianity programs by Iyasu's son Yohannes. The city grew steadily throughout the rule of Iyasu, but would seem most of it's growth in the decade after his death.
Addis Ababa Under Yohannes Iyasu
The reign of Yohannes brought about a campaign by the government to modernize the country, and the rise of industry in Addis caused the cities economy to grow rapidly throughout the sixties and early seventies. With this rapid growth came the rapid growth in differences between the rich and poor, with poverty being embarrassingly common. Addis Ababa would become a true city of the world as Yohannes brought the nation into the national scene, and in 1971 Addis Ababa would be the host to peace talks during the bitter Finnish Revolution, which ended with the Treaty of Addis Ababa later that year.
Civil War Addis Ababa
The death of Yohannes brought a short period of anarchy where the city was put under military rule by Ras Hassan, commander of the Ethiopian Military. Sahle, the heir to the Throne, fled to Europe for a short period of time following the upheavel, where he made deals with the German government and British business to support his reign and help end the anarchy that the Ethiopian military had lost control of. His time in anti-communist Europe caused Sahle to come under the impression that Chinese trade had lead to the influx of anti-government and anti-imperial propaganda, causing Sahle to hamfistingly shut down relations with China. These movements, combined with the blatant entrance of German and the British corporations, caused Hassan and the Ethiopian military to join the growing revolt, though they were quickly driven out of the city by German forces and eventually left the region for the Ethiopian congo when Sahle agreed to return the Congo to Belgium, a move Hassan greatly opposed. After a long war, Europe abandoned Sahle after several decisive defeats, leadning to a revolt in Addis Ababa known as "September Days", in which Yaqobist supporters tried to kill the remaining Sahlians. Sahle himself attempted to escape the city disguised as an arab woman, but he ultimately failed and was caught. The city was brought to order when Hassan took posession of it, ending the civil war.
Addis Ababa under Yaqob II Yohannes
Coronated shortly after the end of the war in Addis, Yaqob quickly went to reforming the government and rebuilding the scarred country.
Addis Ababa lies at an altitude of 7,546 feet (2,300 metres) and is a grassland biome, located at 9 9°1′48″N 38°44′24″E. The city lies at the foot of Mount Entoto. From its lowest point, around Iyasu V International Airport, at 2,326 metres (7,631 ft) above sea level in the southern periphery, the city rises to over 3,000 metres (9,800 ft) in the Entoto Mountains to the north.
Addis Ababa has a Subtropical highland climate (Koppen Cwb). The city possesses a complex mix of highland climate zones, with temperature differences of up to 10 °C, depending on elevation and prevailing wind patterns. The high elevation moderates temperatures year-round, and the city's position near the equator means that temperatures are very constant from month to month.
Center of the Ethiopian Government, the Imperial Palace is home of the Ethiopian Parliament, the offices of Parliament, and the offices of the Imperial Advisors. The Imperial Palace is an ornate building notable for it's guilded walls and expensive furniture. It is one of the most European buildings in Addis Ababa in terms of architecture.
Home of the Imperial Family, the Imperial Residence is stylistically more Arab, with outdoor courtyards and pools permeating the residence. Though it has a few offices, the primary purpose of the Imperial Residence is as a living quarters for the Imperial family. It's current resident is Yaqob II Yohannes.
Iyasu V International Airport
Iyasu International Airport is the largest airport in the whole of the Ethiopian Empire. It is a central hub for air travel in Africa. Despite it's importance, it isn't maintained to the highest of standards and is known for it's poorly kept runways structurally sub par terminal.
An expensive hotel near the center of the city. The Ras Hotel is usually where travellers of wealth and importance stay while viisiting the city.
Abyssinian Front Museum
Dedicated to Ethiopian involvement in the Great War, the Abyssinian Front Museum doubles as a monument to the Iyasu Dynasty and their defining victory at the Battle of Segale. Built with the capacity to hold large scale events, the Abyssinian Front Museum was the chosen location for peace talks during the Finnish Revolution due to it's symbolic value.
Formerly Homeguard Intelligence Headquarters, the Walinzi headquarters is the operational base of Ethiopian Military Intelligence.
Osakwe Ampah Foreign Relations Building
Named after the first Foreign Relations advisor who died of a heart attack shortly after preciding over the Treaty of Addis Ababa, the Foreign Relations building is the center for Ethiopian diplomacy.
British Petroleum Offices
Home of British Petroleum in Ethiopia, these offices almost double as government facilities due to the influence British Petroleum had over Ethiopian politics. The retreat of BP forces after the fall of Sahles regime has left these offices empty.