Emperor of Ethiopia, Haile Sellassie I, The First Power of the Holy Trinity, King of kings, Lord of lords, Conquering Lion of the Tribe of Judah. Light of the Universe, Elect of God.

Haile Selassie was an emperor of Ethiopia whose influence as an African leader far surpassed the boundaries of his country. Although his popularity declined near the end of his sixty-year reign, Selassie remains a key figure in turning Ethiopia into a modern civilization. Haile Selassie is one of the most bizarre and misunderstood figures in 20th-century history, alternately worshipped and mocked, idolised and marginalised. There was an old Oromo warlord named Balcha Safo who didn’t recognize his authority, and Balcha sent an army of 10,000 men to Addis Ababa to challenge the man who would be king. Instead of fighting back with an army of his own, as you might expect, Ras Tafari invited Balcha to a banquet in his honor. Balcha had heard stories about famous people getting killed or arrested at banquets when they weren’t paying attention, so he accepted–very cautiously. He brought 600 men along, and ordered them not to drink so they could guard him.

The Coronation of Emperor Haile Selassie I  & Empress Menen Asfaw, last ruling monarchs of Ethiopia on the 2nd November 1930 

Haile Selassie I was Ethiopia's 225th and last emperor, serving from 1930 until his overthrow by the Marxist dictator Mengistu Haile Mariam in 1974. The longtime ruler traced his line back to Menelik I, who was credited with being the child of King Solomon and the Queen of Sheba.He was born in a mud hut in Ejersa Gora on July 23, 1892. Originally named Lij Tafari Makonnen, he was the only surviving and legitimate son of Ras Makonnen, the governor of Harar.Among his father's important allies was his cousin, Emperor Menelik II, who did not have a male heir to succeed him. Tafari seemed like a possible candidate when, following his father's death in 1906, he was taken under the wing of Menelik.His power only grew. In 1928 he appointed himself king, and two years later, after the death of Zauditu, he was made emperor and assumed the name Haile Selassie.

Emperor Haile Selassie - Ethiopia - Africa - 1958.Belonging to House of Solomon, Ras Tafari Makonnen, better known as Haile Selassie I was born to Ras Makonnen Woldemikael Gudessa and Weyziro, Yeshimebert Ali Abajifarin Ejersa Goro, Ethiopia on July12, 1892 and died in Addis Ababa.

In 1931 the new emperor began to develop a written constitution (a system of basic laws of a country) to symbolize his interest in modernization and intention to increase the power of the government, which had been weakening since the death of Menilek. Haile Selassie's efforts were cut short, however, when Benito Mussolini's (1883–1945) Italy invaded the country in 1935. The Italian military used superior weaponry, airplanes, and poison gas to crush the ill-fated resistance led by the emperor. After the invasion, a fascist regime (a country under the control of an all-powerful ruler) occupied the country and marked the first loss of national independence in recorded Ethiopian history. In 1936 Haile Selassie went into exile, meaning he was forced out of the country. While in England he unsuccessfully went to the League of Nations for help.In February 1974 mutinies broke out in the army over low pay, while a secessionist guerrilla war in Eritrea furthered his problems. Haile Selassie was eventually ousted from power in a coup and kept under house arrest in his palace until his death in 1975.

Haile Selassie with Queen Elizabeth II

Princess Aida and her grandfather, Haile Selassie, on a visit to Belgium in 1959.Aida was the granddaughter of Haile Selassie, the Emperor of Ethiopia for half a century and the last in an ancient line of kings. She lived with him during his years of exile in England in the 1930s and, after he was forced from power in 1974, she was imprisoned in Ethiopia with her female relatives for more than a decade. Their incarceration was one of many thorny issues that troubled Britain’s relationship with the new Ethiopian regime.

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