The Battle of Blood River

By Deirdre Fields. It was Boer versus Zulu in a life & death struggle for the survival of the ‘White Africans’… The 16th of December 2006 marked the 168th anniversary of the Battle of Blood River, an event that lies at the heart of Afrikaner nationalism. It is a story of courage, determination, sacrifice, suffering and of undaunted faith in God. It even has mystical aspects. But it is a battle that could have spelled the fate of the Boer nation—perhaps even should have been their end—but miraculously was not. It enabled an entire epic history of the whites of South Africa to unfold. Here, then, is the remarkable saga of the Battle of Blood River.

battle-of-blood-river

The Boers climbed “Execution Hill” (Hlomo Amabutu) in the hot, subtropical, Natal sun; the stench of rotting flesh filled their nostrils. This had been the Zulu King Dingaan’s execution site—and many had been the executions he had ordered. Thousands had found their tortured, final resting place here. Mostly, executions were conducted with the aid of a sangoma or witchdoctor, who would conduct “smelling out” ceremonies, during which he would claim to sniff out those people who were evil wizards, or plotting some mischief against the chief. [Read the entire article as PDF…]


Taken from

The Barnes Review, March/April 2007: The Battle of Blood River

VOLUME XIII, NUMBER 2


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