Battle of the Shangani

Battle of ShanganiWilson's Last Fight
The Battle of the Shangani took place on the 25th October 1893, during the First Matabele War in what is now Zimbabwe.wikipedia
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Maxim gun

Maxim machine gunMaximMaxim machine guns
The battle is noted for being the first battle in which the Maxim gun played an important role.
During the Battle of the Shangani, 700 soldiers fought off 5,000 warriors with just five Maxim guns.

Patrick William Forbes

Patrick ForbesMajor Patrick Forbes
A British column commanded by Major Patrick William Forbes was sent into Matabeleland.
At the Battle of the Shangani, the Maxim guns proved crucial to defeating them.

First Matabele War

First1893 Matabele WarFirst Matebele War
The Battle of the Shangani took place on the 25th October 1893, during the First Matabele War in what is now Zimbabwe.

Lobengula

King LobengulaLobhengulaKing Lobengula’s
The Matabele (Ndebele) king Lobengula planned a surprise attack at night.
The First Matabele War began in October 1893, and the British South Africa Company's overwhelming military force led to devastating losses for the Ndebele warriors, notably at the Battle of the Shangani.

Cecil Rhodes

Cecil John RhodesRhodesCape to Cairo
The leaders of British Southern Africa Cecil Rhodes and Leander Starr Jameson had responded to a raid by the Matabele with force.

Leander Starr Jameson

JamesonSir Leander Starr JamesonSir Starr Jameson
The leaders of British Southern Africa Cecil Rhodes and Leander Starr Jameson had responded to a raid by the Matabele with force.

British South Africa Police

BSAPBritish South African PoliceMashonaland Mounted Police
The force was made up of around seven-hundred men of the paramilitary British South Africa Police, along with an unknown number of native auxiliaries.

Northern Ndebele people

NdebeleMatabeleNdebele people
The Matabele (Ndebele) king Lobengula planned a surprise attack at night.

Assegai

iklwaassegaisassegaai
Lobengula's troops were a disciplined force by pre-colonial African standards, and were equipped with both assegais and Martini Henry rifles, but the British pioneers' Maxim guns, which had never before been used in battle, far exceeded expectations, according to an eyewitness "mow[ing] them down literally like grass".

Martini–Henry

Martini-HenryMartiniMartini-Henry rifle
Lobengula's troops were a disciplined force by pre-colonial African standards, and were equipped with both assegais and Martini Henry rifles, but the British pioneers' Maxim guns, which had never before been used in battle, far exceeded expectations, according to an eyewitness "mow[ing] them down literally like grass".

Gordon Sprigg

John Gordon SpriggSir Gordon SpriggSir John Gordon Sprigg
Cecil Rhodes, writing to Sir Gordon Sprigg, said that "the shooting must have been excellent. . . . It proves the [Police] men were not only brave, but cool, and did not lose their heads, though surrounded with the hordes."

Bembezi

Bembesi
A week later, on 1 November, 2,000 Matabele riflemen and 4,000 warriors attacked Forbes at Bembezi, about 30 mi north-east of Bulawayo, but again they were no match for the crushing firepower of the major's Maxims: about 2,500 more Matabele were killed.

British South Africa Company

British South African CompanyBritish South Africa Company (BSAC)Chartered Company

Matabeleland

MatebelelandMatabele kingdomMatabeleland Province
The Maxim machine guns took center stage and decimated the native force at the Battle of the Shangani.

Saint Crispin's Day

St Crispin's DaySt. Crispin's DaySaint Crispin's feastday
The Battle of Shangani (1893) in the First Matabele War was also fought on that date.

House of Khumalo

The First Matabele War began in October 1893, and the British South Africa Company's use of the Maxim gun led to devastating losses for the Mthwakazi warriors, notably at the Battle of the Shangani.