Ethiopia, officially known as the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, is a country located in the Horn of Africa. It is bordered by Eritrea to the north, Djibouti and Somalia to the east, Sudan and South Sudan to the west, and Kenya to the south. With over 86,000,000 inhabitants, Ethiopia is the most populous landlocked country in the world and the second-most populated nation on the African continent. It occupies a total area of 1,100,000 square kilometres (420,000 sq mi), and its capital and largest city is Addis Ababa.
Ethiopia is one of the oldest locations of human life known to scientists and is widely considered the region from which Homo sapiens first set out for the Middle East and points beyond. Tracing its roots to the 2nd millennium BC, Ethiopia was a monarchy for most of its history. Alongside Rome, Persia, China and India, the Kingdom of Aksum was one of the great world powers of the 3rd century. In the 4th century, it was the first major empire in the world to officially adopt Christianity as a state religion.
Ethiopia is a country of wealthy and immense history. In its old history, Ethiopia is the country where the ancient world and African meet. Ethiopia used for many years in its history Red Sea as the most important bridge for trade between the Mediterranean basin and the Far East. The Axumite Dynasty had great significance in this trade intercourse, which resulted in developing its huge economy.
Pre-history reveals Ethiopia is the country where human species beings originated. The North East and the Southern part of the country in the Great Rift Valley areas are the places of most concentrated fossils in the world. The oldest human fossils and stone tools are discovered from these areas. It was here where Lucy walked about 3.2 millions years ago.The American Anthropologist, Dr. Roland Johanson, discovered Lucy in 1974 in Afar. Ethiopian preferred to call her Dinkenesh (means “You are wonderful”). Later on old fossils like Ardipithecus ramidus (4.5 mi. yrs), the earliest child called Selam (3.3 mi.yrs), the oldest fossil, Cherroapticus abyssinica (10mi. yrs old), the earliest Homo sapiens, Homo sapiens idaltu (160,000 yrs old), the oldest stone tool (2.6 mi. yrs) are all discovered from this amazing country.
Generally speaking, all its great achievements are open to tourism. The grand well sculptured and architecturally interesting which are designed to present multi story houses stelaes and inscriptions of Axum, the outcome of Zagwe Dynasty highly sophisticated architecture rock-hewn churches, the splendid buildings (castles) of Gondar, which is proud of as the Camelot of Africa, the walled and the fourth sacred Muslim religion site, Harar, the Tiya stone plantings, the most incredible Sof Umar natural cave are some of its attraction sites.
Ethiopia is a country of extraordinary ethnic diversity. There are about 83 ethnic groups in the country, which are classified into four language groups: Semetic, Cushitic, Omotic and Nilo Saharan. About 83 languages and over 200 dialetics are spoken in the country. The Oromo people are the biggest and largest population in the country. The Amhara and the Tigray people rank the 2nd and 3rd respectively. The Southern parts of Ethiopia are considered as the museum of Nations and Nationalities. From this region the South Omo area for culture tourism is well developed. The body painting of Arbore and Karo people, the bull jumping (initiation ceremony) and the evangadi dancing of Hamer people, the stick fighting(donga), body painting and scarification of Mursi people along with typical traditional houses, dresses, jewelleries, hair do, dances, etc. attracts many visitors from all over the world. From South and South East of the country the Konso people labyrinthine village, their wooden statues, their generation poles, the community house, and the Gada celebration (the egalitarian, democratic and social institution) of the Oromo society are the most remarkable ones. Ethiopia culture is much diversified. All its nations have its own value and norm of culture. Although diversified culture exists, unity in diversity still exists.
Ethiopian Cuisine and Beverages
Ethiopian food consists of spicy meat and vegetable dishes. It is prepared in the form of wat, a thick stew served with injera, a round flat, spongy like pancake. Injera is made of teff grain which is endemic to Ethiopia. One of the popular national foods of Ethiopia is doro wat (chicken wat). Beverage – there are some traditional drinks in Ethiopia: Tej – It is honey wine made of honey, a plant which is called Rhmnus pyrenoid, and water by fermentation process. Tella – Is made of malt, barley or wheat or maize or sorghum or finger millet, Rhmnus pyrenoid by fermentation process. Arake – It is a kind of Ouzo which is prepared from grains or cereals by high distillation process. Its alcoholic content is about 75%. Coffee – Ethiopian is a country where coffee is originated. Currently, it is the main cash crop. Ethiopian coffee is the most aromatic and pungent in the world.
At 435,071 square miles (1,126,829 km2), Ethiopia is the world's 27th-largest country, comparable in size to Bolivia. It lies between latitudes 3° and 15°N, and longitudes 33° and 48°E. The major portion of Ethiopia lies on the Horn of Africa, which is the easternmost part of the African landmass. Bordering Ethiopia are Sudan and South Sudan to the west, Djibouti and Eritrea to the north, Somalia to the east and Kenya to the south.
Within Ethiopia is a vast highland complex of mountains and dissected plateaus divided by the Great Rift Valley, which runs generally southwest to northeast and is surrounded by lowlands, steppes, or semi-desert. The great diversity of terrain determines wide variations in climate, soils, natural vegetation, and settlement patterns. Ethiopia is an ecologically diverse country, ranging from the deserts along the eastern border to the tropical forests in the south to extensive Afro mountain in the northern and southwestern parts. Lake Tana in the north is the source of the Blue Nile. It also has a large number of endemic species, notably the Gelada Baboon, the Walia Ibex and the Ethiopian wolf (or Simien fox). The wide range of altitude has given the country a variety of ecologically distinct areas, this has helped to encourage the evolution of endemic species in ecological isolation.Language
According to Ethnologue, there are ninety individual languages spoken in Ethiopia. Most people in the country speak Afro-Asiatic languages of the Cushitic or Semitic branches. The former includes Oromiffa, spoken by the Oromo people, and Somali, spoken by the Somali people; the latter includes Amharic, spoken by the Amhara people, and Tigrinya, spoken by the Tigray-Tigrinya people.