Biblical and Quranic records, the Queen of Sheba was an unmarried powerful African Queen who journeyed from Africa to the Middle East to meet King Solomon.
In Ijebu Ode, Ogun State, there are ancient walls and ditches of defense that locals believe were built for the Queen of Sheba. In Ijebu legend, the Queen of Sheba was known as Bilikisu Sungbo, and the walls are eponymously called Sungbo Eredo— meaning “Queen of Sheba’s embankment.”
There is a grove adjacent to the walls that locals believe houses the tomb of the Queen of Sheba.
Sugbon Eredo was bigger than Rome. Apart from the Great Wall of China, no other ancient wall surpasses the Eredo wall in length. Records of radiocarbon dating show the walls and ditches were built around 8040 BC.
In its full glory, Sungbo’s Eredo was greater in size than all of Greater London and the walls ran for a further length than the Hadrian’s Wall in England in their full scale. They were created by excavating around 3.5 million cubic meters (123.6 m cubic feet) of earth.
It’s not easy to accept the claim that the Queen of Sheba once lived in Ijebu Ode or probably descended from there. Popular claims and most evidence gathered point that she was Ethiopian and probably never had any contact with Yoruba people.
It can be argued that the Ijebu legend about the Queen of Sheba is a weak scam to lay claim to the origin of a historical figure recognized by the two dominant religions in Africa and Nigeria— Islam and Christianity, that is.
But the temptation to make such an argument reduces if we consider that the building of Sungbo’s Eredo dates back to between 670 and 870 AD— a period that predates the arrival of Christianity and Islam in Yorubaland.
On that note, there is a strong reason to believe Ijebu’s ancestors weren’t aware of the Biblical and Quranic stories about the Queen, so they couldn’t have modeled their story after the scriptural accounts.
Moreover, the claim that the walls were built for the Queen isn’t a claim that started spreading after Islam and Christianity were introduced to Yorubaland— Ijebu ancestors have passed down the claim several generations before the arrival of both religions.
But the question remains: Did the Queen of Sheba live in Ijebu Ode?
Credit: Apotheosis Of Knowledge.
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