King Dingane's Grave - Hlatikulu

King Dingane fled north after the battle of Blood River in 1838 and established a new homestead in the Hluhluwe River Valley and launched an invasion of Swazililand, which was repulsed, but was to be a prime cause of his death. Mpande, the king’s half brother, fled southward in September 1839 with his followers to claim protection from the Boers, fearing that Dingane was intending to have him killed. Mpande and the Boers eventually agreed to attack the king’s forces and this eventually led to the battle of Maquongqo, in which Dingane’s forces were defeated. He fled into the Lebombo mountains

 

He built a homestead, called Esankoleni on the slopes of Hlatikulu hill in the territory of Silevana who was acting as regent for Sambane, heir to the Nyawo chieftainship. Silevana saw King Dingane’s presence as a threat and notified a Swazi patrol, under Sonyezane Dlamini. In 1840 the Swazi, with Nyawo help, surrounded the homestead and King Dingane was stabbed by Silevana when he came out of his hut. He was buried at Esankoleni, but the Nyawo were fearful of the possible consequences of killing Zulu Royalty, and tried to brush over their part in the deed by keeping the location of the grave a closely-guarded secret.

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