UK to return lock of Ethiopian emperor's hair.

Position:Kaleidoscope - Tewodros II

The United Kingdom's National Army Museum is reportedly set to return a braid of hair from Ethiopia's Emperor Tewodros II, looted after he killed himself following British invasion in 1868.

Widely considered as the founder of modern Ethiopia, Tewodros ruled the country from 1855 to 1868 and spent much of the time fighting battles to unify the region.

After a diplomatic spat with the UK, the Emperor took members of a British mission prisoner, which resulted in London launching the 1868 Expedition to Abyssinia under Robert Napier, to engage the country in conflict.

After the Battle of Magdala in the Amhara region, the Emperor was defeated and killed himself rather than be taken prisoner.

British expeditionary troops then ransacked his Magdala fortress, using 200 mules and 15 camels to carry the spoils of sacred manuscripts, royal gold and his hair back to Britain.

Ethiopia has been lobbying the UK to return its stolen artefacts since 2007 and upped the pressure in 2018.

In 2007, Ethiopia asked Britain's Queen Elizabeth II to return the bones of Emperor Tewodros' son Prince Alemayehu, who was buried at Windsor Castle.

The return of Tewodros' hair is therefore a significant step, with English paper The Guardian reporting that...

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