Hunting Africa pp 159-165 | Cite as

Conclusion: Imperial Mastery

  • Angela Thompsell
Part of the Britain and the World book series (BAW)


It was raining, and Frederick Courteney Selous sat in the dirt in front of the Ndebele King Lobengula’s ‘quarters’ being ‘scoffed and jeered at’1. Already a well-known and respected hunter, Selous was being tried before Lobengula for the crime of instructing his wagon driver, Moilo, to kill a hippopotamus, a protected animal in Ndebele society. In his narrative, Selous said that he had actually warned Moilo against killing hippopotamuses but that he never said so during the trial as Moilo was ‘an old boy of mine, and a man I much liked’. Selous was afraid of what would happen to Moilo if he transferred the blame onto him, so instead, Selous denied the charge on the grounds that Moilo had killed the hippo for food, which was acceptable within Ndebele culture. Lobengula did not accept this defence, however. He found Selous guilty and fined him roughly £60, a large sum at the time that was more than the annual wage of a white farmhand in the Transvaal.2


Annual Wage Imperial Power African Leader Privileged Knowledge African Affair 
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Copyright information

© Angela Thompsell 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Angela Thompsell
    • 1
  1. 1.The College at BrockportSUNYUSA

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