Eswatini, is a landlocked country in Southern Africa, which was formerly called Swaziland. It is bordered by Mozambique and South Africa. Eswatini is one of the smallest countries in Africa. It has a diverse climate and topography, ranging from a cool and mountainous highveld to a hot and dry lowveld. The population is composed primarily of ethnic Swazis. The prevalent language is Swazi. The Swazis established their kingdom in the mid-18th century under the leadership of Ngwane III. The country and the Swazi take their names from Mswati II, the 19th-century king under whose rule Swazi territory was expanded and unified; the present boundaries were drawn up in 1881 during the Scramble for Africa. After the Second Boer War the kingdom was a British protectorate from 1903 until it regained its independence on 6 September 1968. The government is an absolute monarchy (the last of its kind in Africa). Its famous king was Sobhuza II (1899-1982), who became king at the age of four months. He was known as ‘the Bull of Swazi’ as he had 70 wives and produced 210 children, of whom 180 survived infancy. He led Swaziland through independence and on his death was succeeded by the present king, Mswati III (born in 1968), a son of King Sobhuza by one of his younger wives, Ntfombi Tfwala. He was crowned king at the age of 18 in 1986. Alongside his mother, he reigns as an absolute monarch. He too practices polygamy. He has 15 wives.
Eswatini is a developing country and is classified as a lower-middle income economy. THE Country’s major overseas trading partners are the United States and the European Union. As a member of the Southern African Customs Union (SACU) and the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), its main local trading partner is South Africa. Most of the country’s employment is provided by its agricultural and manufacturing sectors. Eswatini is a member of the Southern African Development Community (SADC), the African Union, the Commonwealth of Nations, and the United Nations. Elections are held every five years to determine the House of Assembly and the Senate majority. The current constitution was adopted in 2005. The population of Eswatini is young. As of 2018 the median age was 22 years, with people aged 14 years or younger constituting 35% of the country’s total population. In April 2018 the official name was changed from the Kingdom of Swaziland to the Kingdom of Eswatini mirroring the name commonly used in Swazi.
Fun facts: The country is commonly known for sighting the big five and is one of the few countries where both black and white rhinos can be found.
King Sobhuza II (the present King’s father) is the longest reigning monarch in world history, having reigned for 82 years and 253 days from 1899 to 1982.