Lobengula Khumalo
King of Matabeleland
(also encompassing Mashonaland)
ReignSeptember 1868 – January 1894
PredecessorMzilikazi (Father)
Bornca. 1845
Diedpresumed January 1894
ca. 70 km south of the Zambesi river in Matabeleland
SpouseLozikeyi (1st royal wife), Lomalongwe (2nd royal wife)
IssueMpezeni (royal son and heir) born in Bulawayo ca. 1880 and died at Somerset Hospital on 9 December 1899 of pleurisy, Njube (royal son), Nguboyenja (royal son) sent to Cape Town after death of Lobengula and buried at Entumbane near to Mzilikazi, Sidojiwa born at Nsindeni ca. 1888 (royal son) and died 13 July 1960 (buried at Entumbane near to Mzilikazi),[citation needed] and at least one daughter[1]
HouseHouse of Khumalo
FatherMzilikazi Khumalo, first king of the Northern Ndebele people
MotherPrincess of the Swazi House of Sobhuza I., an "inferior" wife of Mzilikazi

Lobengula Khumalo (1845–1894) was the second and last king of the Northern Ndebele people (historically called Matabele in English). Both names, in the isiNdebele language, mean "the men of the long shields", a reference to the Ndebele warriors' use of the Zulu shield and spear.


The Matabele were descendents of a faction among the Zulu who fled north during the reign of Shaka following the mfecane ("the crushing") or difaqane ("the scattering"). Shaka's general Mzilikazi led his followers away from Zulu territory after a falling-out. In the late 1830s, they settled in what is now called Matabeleland in western Zimbabwe, but they claimed the sovereignty of a much wider area. The resulting kingdom was an Iron Age society in which the members of the tribe had a privileged position against outsiders whose lives were subject to the will of the king.

In return for their privileges, however, the Ndebele people both men and women had to submit to a strict discipline and status within the hierarchy. That set out their duties and responsibilities to the rest of society. Infringements of any social responsibility were punished with death, subject to the king's seldom-awarded reprieve. This tight discipline and loyalty were the secret of the Ndebele's success in dominating their neighbours.[2]

Other Languages
Afrikaans: Lobengoela
Ænglisc: Lobengula
Boarisch: Lobengula
català: Lobengula
chiShona: Lobengula
dansk: Lobengula
Deutsch: Lobengula
español: Lobengula
français: Lobengula
italiano: Lobengula
ქართული: ლობენგულა
Kiswahili: Lobengula
Nederlands: Lobengula
norsk: Lobengula
polski: Lobengula
português: Lobengula
русский: Лобенгула