Dr. Kebede Michael who came from the old city of Ankober was a literary giant of Ethiopia, with over thirty books published in his name. Growing up Dr.Kebede received church education and later once he came to Addis Ababa he joined Catholic Cathedral School as a boarding student. He then went to Lazarist Mission and to Alliance Ethio - France School where he received training in language and literature.
With the passage of time Dr. Kebede had a deep knowledge of Geez and Amharic language. He also had a good command of English and French Languages. From 1940-1970’s he wrote Amharic school textbooks in which he provided generations of Ethiopian students with literature filled with knowledge and information about a wide range of issues and disciplines.
Honorable Dr. Kebede Michael has published over thirty books dealing with various issues. Some of these are as follows: Plays entitled “Belaineh”, “Yetinbit Ketero”; poetry books entitled “Tarikina Missale”, ”Yekine Azmra” and “Yedirset Tinsae”. He also published books on general knowledge entitled “Talalak Sewoch”, “Yesilitane Ayer”, “Anibal” and “Japan endiet Seletenech”. About five of his books have been translated into French and English languages. Moreover, he has translated from English into Amharic two plays entitled “Romeo and Juliet” and “Beyond Pardon”. Dr.Kebede Michael was the first ever winner of Haile Selassie I Prize Award in Amharic Literature. He was a distinguished Ethiopian personality who was also awarded Honorable Doctorate Degree by Addis Ababa University. His contribution in literature and education puts him among the top that Ethiopia has seen.
Honorable Dr. Kebede Michael has also served his country as Journalist, Director General of the Ministry of Education, Director General in the Ministry of foreign Affairs, Director of Postal Administration, Director of His Imperial Majesty’s Private Information Cabinet and Director of National library and Archives. Honorable Dr Kebede Michael died at the age of 84 in 1999.
Reference: Ethiopian Writers
The Lalibela’s are traditional singers of Northern Ethiopia who roam from place to place, house to house, early in the morning singing, begging and blessing people for alms, without the use of any kind of instruments. The majority of them come from Sawa, Wallo, and Gojam where they are named as Abba Gunda and Abba Waggat or Abba Waddaqi in Wallo. The most common name given to them by non lalibela’s is Hamina or Amina mainly in Gondar and Gojam. There was an Ethiopian believe that the lalibela’s would suffer from leprosy if they didn’t sing, beg and bless for alms in the morning.
Their modes of singing can be classified into two parts. The first is a duet sung by a man and a women. The couple move from house to house with the women singing vocals with a strained voice, followed by the man singing verses of praise. The second mode of singing is performed by a single man or women who sings by chores and verse.
Before they start singing, they usually ask neighbors and collect information about owner of the house and edit their lyrics to suit and uplift the feeling of their listeners. Once they receive alms in the form of money, food or cloth they bless and move to the next residence.
This tradition has been passed down from generation to generation – children learning from their parents and the young learning from the old. Thanks to changing times, the lalibela’s activities have greatly decreased nowadays and the stigma attached with leprosy has disappeared with education and social awareness
Lalibela begging in front of a door
Reference : African Study Monographs
Ethiopia for the first time in history has sent a cyclist athletes team to participate in Melbourne Summer Olympic Games in 1956 and ever since participated in all Summer Olympic Games, except for the 1976, 1984 and 1988 Games. Ethiopia also participated in the Winter Olympic Games for the first time at the 2006 Games in Turin.
Below is a comprehensive list of Ethiopian athletes, medals won and the hosting country along the year.
Athletes Full Name Event Medal Won
1960 Rome Olympics
Abebe Bikila Men's marathon Gold
1964 Tokyo Olympics
Abebe Bikila Men's marathon Gold
1968 Mexico City Olympics
Mamo Wolde Men's marathon Gold Mamo Wolde Men's 10,000 m Silver
1972 Munich Olympics
Mamo Wolde Men's marathon Bronze Miruts Yifter Men's 10,000 m Bronze
1980 Moscow Olympics
Miruts Yifter Men's 5000 m Gold Miruts Yifter Men's 10,000 m Gold Mohamed Kedir Men's 10,000 m Bronze Eshetu Tura Men's 3000 m Bronze
1992 Barcelona Olympics
Derartu Tulu Women's 10,000 m Gold Addis Abebe Men's 10,000 m Bronze Fita Bayisa Men's 5000 m Bronze
1996 Atlanta Olympics
Haile Gebrselassie Men's 10,000 m (OR) Gold Fatuma Roba Women's marathon Gold Gete Wami Women's 10,000 m Bronze
2000 Sydney Olympics
Gezahegne Abera Men's marathon Gold Haile Gebrselassie Men's 10,000 m Gold Derartu Tulu Women's 10,000 m (OR) Gold Million Wolde Men's 5000 m Gold Gete Wami Women's 10,000 m Silver Assefa Mezgebu Men's 10,000 m Bronze Tesfaye Tola Men's marathon Bronze Gete Wami Women's 5000 m Bronze
2004 Athens Olympics
Kenenisa Bekele Men's 10,000 m (OR) Gold Meseret Defar Women's 5000 m Gold Kenenisa Bekele Men's 5000 m Silver Ejegayehu Dibaba Women's 10,000 m Silver Sileshi Sihine Men's 10,000 m Silver Tirunesh Dibaba Women's 5000 m Bronze Derartu Tulu Women's 10,000 m Bronze
2008 Beijing Olympics
Kenenisa Bekele Men's 10,000 m (OR) Gold Kenenisa Bekele Men's 5000 m (OR) Gold Tirunesh Dibaba Women's 10,000 m (OR) Gold Tirunesh Dibaba Women's 5000 m Gold Sileshi Sihine Men's 10,000 m Silver Meseret Defar Women's 5000 m Bronze Tsegay Kebede Men's marathon Bronze
2012 London Olympics
Meseret Defar Women's 5000 m Gold Tirunesh Dibaba Women's 10,000 m Gold Tiki Gelana Women's marathon (OR) Gold Dejen Gebremeskel Men's 5000 m Silver Sofia Assefa Women's 3000 m steeplechase Bronze Tariku Bekele Men's 10,000 m Bronze Tirunesh Dibaba Women's 5000 m Bronze
Note: OR means Olympic Record
Reference: Ethiopia and the Olympics
Geremew Denboba was one of the first Ethiopian Olympians who by his sheer determination, persuaded and was allowed by the Ethiopian Emperor Haile Selassie to represent Ethiopia and participate in the 1956 Olympic Games in Melbourne, Australia. He was the first person in history to carry our national flag in Olympic Games. Even though, a very long(nearly seven days) journey and inadequate preparation and training played a bigger role, with his fellow Ethiopians (Tesema Amossa, Mengistu Neguse, Abeba Mamo, Tsahaye Bahta and Mesfin Tesfaye) they ranked Ethiopia 9th in the world and were recorded as the first black Olympic cyclists . In the 1960 Rome Olympic Games he fell of his bicycle and didn’t finish the race; however he was leading all of the 9 rounds out of 11. The other cyclists who represented Ethiopia along with him were Tesema Amossa, Mengistu Neguse, Admassu Merga, Alazar Kiflom and Jovanie Masola. He was the head coach of the Ethiopian cycling team on the 1964 Tokyo Olympic Games. As a dedicated cyclist, Geremew has inspired and trained Ethiopian cyclists for many years. His 30 cups and 32 gold and silver medals both in international and national stages are a shining example of his achievements.
Cycling at 1956 Melbourne Olympics
1956 Melbourne Olympics Ethiopian Team
Ref: History of Ethiopian Sport
Kitfo is a traditional Ethiopian dish.
Kitfo consists of minced raw beef, marinated in mitmita (a chili powder based spice blend) and niter kibbeh (a clarified butter infused with herbs and spices). The word comes from the Ethio-Semitic root k-t-f, meaning "to chop finely; mince."
Kitfo cooked lightly rare is known as kitfo leb leb.Kitfo is often served alongside—sometimes mixed with—a mild cheese called ayibe or cooked greens known as gomen. In many parts of Ethiopia, kitfo is served with injera, a flatbread made from teff, although in traditional Gurage cuisine, one would use kocho, a thick flatbread made from the ensete plant. An ensete leaf may be used as a garnish.
The 1960 Ethiopian coup was the coup d'etat staged in Ethiopia on 13 December 1960 to overthrow Emperor Haile Selassie. While he was away on a state visit to Brazil, four conspirators, led by Germame Neway and his older brother Brigadier General Mengistu Neway, who was commander of the Kebur Zabangna (the Imperial Bodyguard), took hostage several ministers and other important personages. Then after taking control of most of Addis Ababa, the capital of Ethiopia, they declared the regime of Haile Selassie had been deposed and announced the beginning of a new, more progressive government under the rule of Haile Selassie's eldest son, Crown Prince Asfaw Wossen, that would address the numerous economic and social problems Ethiopia faced. Despite a demonstration of support by the students of Haile Selassie University, the other military units remained loyal and worked together to crush the coup. By 17 December, loyalists had regained control of Addis Ababa and the conspirators were either dead or had fled the capital.
A number of experts of Ethiopian history consider this event the most serious threat to Haile Selassie's rule between his return to Ethiopia in 1941 and his deposition in 1974 during the Ethiopian Revolution.
Germame Neway Mengistu Neway