you are currently viewing: Discussion Forum


The Rorke's Drift VC Discussion Forum
(View Discussion Rules)


PLEASE NOTE: This forum is now inactive and is provided for reference purposes only. The live forum is available at

(Back To Topic List)

DateOriginal Topic
6th December 2003!879 - Zululand's size and population.
By John Lewis
I should be obliged if someone could let me know the size and population of Zululand at the time of the 1879 invasion. I want to compare the figures with those of my home country, Wales, at the same time.
7th December 2003Dave Nolan
Will you be including Monmouthshire in your figure for Wales? ;)
7th December 2003Alan Critchley
Now then Dave!
7th December 2003John Lewis
Hello Dave,
Thanks for taking the trouble to reply. I think I know where you are coming from. Yes, I shall be including Monmouthshire as I see no reason not to. Monmouthshire has many, many Welsh place names as have Herefordshire, Shropshire and others. You will know that at one time the Brythons, of whom the Welsh are the last remnants, ruled all of Briton south of Scotland. Then came the Saxons, Vikings, Normans, etc. With a name like Nolan you are probably of, at least part, Irish extraction so will know that St. Patrick was Welsh (fact) and that many Irish are descended from Welshmen who owned boats or travelled across with the Normans. The 'Irish' name, Walsh is not Irish at all but comes from the same root as, 'Wales.' It means 'Those not of us.' The Welsh name for Wales is, 'Cymru' which means 'Our people.' It's not the name that counts but the man. By the way can you help me with my original question ?
Hyfryd i siarad d'chi (Nice to speak to you),
7th December 2003Clive Dickens
I myself do not mind I have the honour to have both Welsh and English blood run in my veins, so I am a Welshman when they have their success cycle at Rugby and an Englishman now we are world champs thanks to my mother being Welsh and my Father English , great isn't it?
8th December 2003Julian Whybra
Actually, Wealas means 'foreigners' in Old English. And the Welsh are not quite the last remnant of the Britons there's Cornwall (Cornwealas), Cumberland (note the same root as Cambrian), and even isolated enclaves in the east of the country - Wallasea Island (wealas' isle) and Saffron Walden (valley of the wealas) to name but two in my own county. Ignoring this aside, Trollope gives the population of Zululand in 1878 as 300,000 approx. and the area as 10.430 sq. m. though I don't know whether this included the disputed territory (a sort of Zulu Monmouthshire?).
9th December 2003John Lewis
Thanks Julian for providing the information. This is a marvellous site. Everything comes to him who waits. As for the other matter perhaps I should have made myself a little clearer. What I meant to say that Wales is now the only Brythonic Celt language left in these islands. That spoken in Cumberland & Cornwall have long since disappeared, whilst Breton, a kind of Cornish extension, is only spoken in Brittany. But enough of that I don't want to digress from the true purpose of this excellent discussion group.
10th December 2003Robert Jones
What difference doe it really make where they came from---they all fought and died on your side,didn,t they?
10th December 2003Peter Ewart
Well, he's interested - surely that's enough? Just as someone else might wonder how many Nkobamakosi there were compared to the Umcityu, or whether a particular force in the north was actually Swazi or Zulu, or whatever.

John, there was a discussion here a few weeks or months ago about the population of Zululand (& its army) at the time but I can't tell you exactly how long ago it was. A couple of weeks ago I came across a reference to a calculation of the populatrion of Zululand at that time but can't find it now (but still hope to).