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The Battle of Isandlwana: One of The Worst Defeats of The British Empire - Military History

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 20,000 Zulus at Isandlwana

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Posts : 1843
Join date : 2009-03-25

PostSubject: 20,000 Zulus at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 06, 2010 10:43 pm

Has it been confirmed that there was 20,000 Zulus at Isandlwana. I was reading on a website that there was 35,000. How has it been determined that there was 20,000 what resource's were used. Or was a logical mathematical system used. If so what was it. I have always believed that there were 20.000 Zulu’s now I’m starting to doubt it.
Help wanted to restore my faith in the History Books !! Was there 20,000 - 35,000 more or less.

Thanks in advance..
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Posts : 2547
Join date : 2009-04-06
Age : 56
Location : UK

PostSubject: Re: 20,000 Zulus at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 06, 2010 11:07 pm

Hi 24th long time no hear. How are you.

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] This website says there were 12,000 scratch

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] And this one says 24,000 Zulu. scratch

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] 30,000 scratch
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old historian2


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Location : East London

PostSubject: Re: 20,000 Zulus at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 06, 2010 11:21 pm

It gets worse.

Isandlwana 1879 The great Zulu victory.

Author: Ian Knight
Illustrator: Adam Hook
About this book
The battle of Isandlwana fought on 22 January 1879 was the greatest defeat suffered by the British Army during the Victorian era. A Zulu army of 24,000 warriors had moved undetected to within striking distance of the British camp in the shadow of Isandlwana Mountain. From the start the 1,700 defenders underestimated the danger descending upon them. They were swept aside with horrifying speed and the final stage of the battle consisted of desperate hand-to-hand fighting amid the British camp. Over 1,300 men were killed; scarcely 60 Europeans survived. Ian Knight employs new archaeological and historical research to provide a completely new interpretation of the course of the battle.
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PostSubject: Re: 20,000 Zulus at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 06, 2010 11:28 pm

From Lieutenant - General Commanding South Africa to the Right Honorable the Secretary of State for War

Information received from Umtegolalo, a Zulu well known to Mr. Longeast, Interpreter to the Lieutenant-General, found wounded at Rorke's
Drift on the 23rd January.

Statement made by Natives regarding the Action of the 22nd January, at the Sandhlwana Hill. Eye-Witness accounts

“The army consisted of the Undi Corps, the Nokenke and Umcityu Regiments, and the Nkobamakosi and Inbonambi Regiments, who were severally about 3000, 7000, and 10,000 strong, being the picked troops of the Zulu army”

Total 20,000

Source: Northeast Medals
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Age : 62
Location : Melbourne, Australia

PostSubject: how many were there.   Wed Apr 07, 2010 1:48 am

hi all.
I"m more than happy to go with the zulu estimation of their own army for the simple fact , how would the
british have counted them for a start !. If anyone had an idea of how many zulu"s there were , surely it
is them . Idea . You can rest assured the zulu"s had no idea of the number of troops they were attacking
whereas the British had a rough idea how many they had defending the camp. Hope this makes sense . :) .
cheers 90th.
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PostSubject: Re: 20,000 Zulus at Isandlwana   Wed Apr 07, 2010 6:42 am

hi all. sanibona!
ive read books and websites that have estimations ranging from 12,000 up to 50,000+. I dont think there is a way to determine that amount of zulus there were.
I too am still doubting the amount of zulus that attacked the camp at Isandlwana. Maybe it is just a way of covering up that terrible defeat to avoid humiliation. Though, this is just a though

thanks joe
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Ken Gillings

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Age : 71
Location : Pinetown, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa

PostSubject: Re: 20,000 Zulus at Isandlwana   Fri Apr 09, 2010 9:00 pm

28 000 assembled at Ondini for the purification of umnyama and first fruits ceremony.
Once across the White Mfolozi River, 4 000 warriors under the command of Chief Godide kaNdlela Ntuli left the main army with the uMxhapho Regiment to deal with the Coastal Column under Col C K Pearson and were reinforced by elements of local amabutho comprising mainly the iNsukamngeni, iQwa, uDududu, iNdabakawombe and other coastal clans, bringing their strength to approximately 6000.
That means that 24 000 warriors continued to the Ngwebeni valley. 4 000 formed the reserves and were made to sit with their backs to the battle of Isandlwana (so they wouldn't become involved), which leaves 20 000 who attacked the camp.
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Mr Greaves


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PostSubject: Re: 20,000 Zulus at Isandlwana   Fri Apr 09, 2010 9:59 pm

Thanks Ken. For putting the record straight.
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