Notable Akans

Akan history

Among the most notable Akan people are Kwame Nkrumah who started the pan-African movement which liberated many states from European Colonialism. Kofi Annan (born April 8, 1938) is the first Sub-Saharan African to head the UN organization and was awarded the Nobel Prize. Others of Akan origin include Arthur Wharton was the first black professional footballer in the world; Paul Cuffee, who was of Ashanti origin, built a lucrative shipping empire and by the first years of the nineteenth century was one of the wealthiest men in the United States. His largest ship, the 268-ton Alpha, was built in 1806, along with his favorite ship of all, the 109-ton brig Traveller.

Akan Language

Akan /əˈkæn/, also known as Twi [tɕɥi] and Fante, is an Akan language that is the principal native language of Akan lands in Ghana, spoken over much of the southern half of that country, by about 58% of the population, and among 30% of the population of Ivory Coast.[citation needed] Three dialects have been developed as literary standards with distinct orthographies, Asante, Akuapem (together called Twi), and Fante, which despite being mutually intelligible were inaccessible in written form to speakers of the other standards. In 1978 the Akan Orthography Committee (AOC) established a common orthography for all of Akan, which is used as the medium of instruction in primary school by speakers of several other Akan languages such as Anyi, Sefwi, Ahanta, and the Guang languages. The Akan Orthography Committee has compiled a unified orthography of 20,000 words. The adinkra symbols are old ideograms. The language came to the Caribbean and South America, notably in Suriname spoken by the Ndyuka and in Jamaica by the Jamaican Maroons known as Coromantee, with enslaved people from the region. The descendants of escaped slaves in the interior of Suriname and the Maroons in Jamaica still use a form of this language, including Akan naming convention, in which children are named after the day of the week on which they are born, e.g. Akwasi (for a boy) or Akosua (girl) born on a Sunday. In Jamaica and Suriname the Anansi spider stories are well known.

If a woman loves you, she doesn’t want to see you in debt.
Akan Tribe Proverb, Ghana

Choose your Akan Name

1

Born on Monday
Male: Kwadwó ; Female: Adwoa

2

Born on Tuesday
Male: Kwabená ; Female:Abenaa

3

Born on Wednesday
Male: Kwakú ; Female:Akua

4

Born on Thursday
Male:Yaw ; Female:Yaa

5

Born on Friday
Male:Kofí ; Female:Afua

6

Born on Saturday
Male:Kwámè ; Female:Ám̀ma

7

Born on Sunday
Male:Akwasí ; Female:Akosua

Memorable Dates in History

15th century

Akan people dominated gold mining and trading in the region and, from the 17th century on, they were among the most powerful groups in west Africa.

1701–1957

The Ashanti (or Asante) Empire (or Confederacy), also Asanteman , was a West Africa sovereign state of the Ashanti people of Ashanti, Ghana.

1695 – 1717

Asanteman king Osei Tutu , with the help of accomplice Okomfo Anokye, established the Kingdom of Asanteman, with the Golden Stool as a symbol of Asante unity and spirit.

1777 – 1803

Asante king Osei Kwadwo imposed administrative reforms that allowed Asanteman to be governed effectively. King Osei Kwame Panyin , and King Osei Tutu Kwame continued Asanteman territorial consolidation.