Ethiopia, which formally referred to as the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, is a nation situated in North Africa (northeastern Africa, to be specific). It is bordered by Kenya, Eritrea, Sudan, Djibouti, Somalia and South Sudan. It’s the second-most crowded nation in Africa.

With 59 interesting facts about Ethiopia, let’s learn more about this fascinating country!

Facts about Ethiopian history, culture and geography

1. The name “Ethiopia” originates from the Greek words aitho (I burn) and ops (face), which together signify “scorched faces.”

2. Ethiopia is the main nation within Africa that was never formally colonized; in any case, it needed to overcome Italian forces twice to stay free.

3. Ethiopia is among the oldest countries on the planet, having been established in 980 B.C.

4. It is illegal in Ethiopia for a boy or a girl to get married before the age of 18. However, this rule is seldom enforced.

5. In Ethiopia, two out of every five girls are married before their 18th birthday, and nearly one out of five girls marries before the age of 15.

6. In addition, 80% of Ethiopian women have experienced female genital mutilation/cutting.

7. The soonest occasion of human precursors utilizing instruments has been followed to Ethiopia.

8. Some of the traditional social orders in Ethiopia see having twins as “mingi,” or an indication of misfortune. They believe that twins might be reviled, or welcome insidious spirits.

9. New year: Ethiopians celebrate their new year on September 11. They call it Enkutatash.

10. It is the only country in the world to have 13 months in a year. Interesting or weird?

11. It is also home to a population that speaks more than 80 different languages.

12. Ethiopia and Russia are the two countries in the world to have never been occupied.

13. The oldest fossil skeleton of a human was found in Ethiopia. It is over three million years old.

Ethiopia on map with neighboring countries
Interesting facts about Ethiopia: Ethiopia on map with neighboring countries.

14. It is also the tenth-largest country in Africa.

15. Children in Ethiopia take their father’s first name as their last name. They (parents and children) do not share their last name.

16. In Ethiopia, it is considered impolite to refuse a cup of coffee.

17. On your visit to Ethiopia, you can also experience the great taste of their homemade wine made from honey and a shrub – gesho.

18. Coffee was accidentally discovered in Ethiopia when a goat herder found his flock running restlessly after eating the coffee plant.

19. The Great Rift Valley slices through Ethiopia from the upper-eastern portion of the nation to the south, and is the main physical element of Africa that is unmistakable from space.

20. Donkeys and camels were initially trained in Ethiopia.

21. Ethiopia Obelisk: At 75-feet (23 m) high, the Aksum Obelisk has windows and entryways, and could be viewed as the world’s first high rise.

22. Aksum, in Ethiopia, is well known as a petitioner to the last resting place of Ark of the Covenant, the mid-section containing the 10 instructions God provided for Moses, and the standing pillar, which is 75 feet (23 m) high.

23. Ethiopian distance runner Abebe Bikila won the gold medal in the Olympic Marathon in 1960, running the race barefoot. He won the race again in Tokyo four years later, becoming the only individual to win the race twice, setting a world record.

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Facts about Ethiopia’s religion, food and civilization 

24. Food: Ethiopia’s national dish is called “wat.” Ethiopians like to eat this fiery stew with injera, a level, light bread. Suppers are delighted in by detaching a bit of injera and utilizing it to gather up a bit of wat. Wat can be made with chicken (doro wat), meat (sega wat), sheep, vegetables and prepared with berbere, a blend of flavors, and niter kibbeh, a cleared-up spread. It might likewise be finished off with hard boiled eggs!

25. Religion – Ethiopia is home to the well-known sacred city of Lalibela. About the greater part of the city’s occupants are of Ethiopian Orthodox confidence, and its populace tops amid times of religious journey. On account of its notorious solid holy places cut into shape, Lalibela is a UNESCO World Heritage site.

26. Tourism – Lalibela isn’t the only “must-see” destination in Ethiopia! Actually, the nation has earned the distinction of being one of the countries with the greatest number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites on the planet – nine altogether. A hefty portion of these destinations are home to mosques, antiquated ruins and stunning scenes.

27. Language – There are upwards of 84 dialects spoken in Ethiopia! Despite the fact that the official dialect is Amharic, numerous Ethiopians talk a neighborhood dialect.

28. Ethiopia is also thought to be the world’s first Christian state.

29. Italy was defeated twice when it attempted to invade Ethiopia.

30. Apart from Arabs, Ethiopians are the only people to have indigenously written alphabets.

31. Do not be surprised to learn the fact that the Ethiopian Captain Aster Tolossa is allegedly the first female pilot to shoot down an enemy airplane.

32. Ethiopia is also known as the “Horn of Africa.”

33. In earlier times, Ethiopia was known as Abyssinia.

34. The instance of first Hijra in Islam happened in Ethiopia when the Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) sent approximately 80 people, including his daughter, to Ethiopia. Today, almost 35% of the population of Ethiopia is Muslim.

35.  Candace – Candace is the name given to the old rulers who administered Ethiopia. It is sometimes spelled “Kandake” or “Kentake.”

36. Ethiopia’s Axumite and Dahamat civilizations are amongst the world’s most ancient.

37. Adidis Ababa, the Ethiopian capital, is also the world’s fourth-highest capital city.

38. Tukul – The traditional homes were hovels called tukuls. The floor is soil, while the dividers are sticks and mud and the roof is produced using Tef, a long grass.

39. The eating of any animal products on Wednesdays and Fridays is prohibited in Ethiopia.

40. The largest lake in Ethiopia–Lake Tana–is also the source of the Blue Nile River.

41. Markets – Packed with stands offering everything from extraordinary leafy foods and beans to electronic products and traditional specialties, the Addis Ababa Mercato is Africa’s biggest outdoor market. Situated in the heart of Ethiopia’s capital city, this is the primary destination for privately made products and harvested foods.

42. Rastafari Roots – Haile Selassie I, Ethiopia’s previous Emperor, is at the core of the Rastafari movement and lifestyle. He is perceived as God incarnate, or being both heavenly and human by adherents of the Rasta culture.

43. Dance – Inspired by the “moving” of snakes, traditional Ethiopian dance is particularly special.

44. Coffee – Ethiopia is the originator of espresso!

45. Civilization – Not only is Ethiopia the originator of espresso; it is the originator of mankind, too! Home to fossils going back a number of years, Ethiopia is viewed as the birthplace of progress. It is Africa’s most established state and home to humankind’s oldest skeletons!

46. The Watch and The Calendar – Ethiopia checks its time on the inverse rotation of its clock. 6 pm would be 12 and 12 would be 6 am. The Ethiopian datebook has 13 months. The schedule is eight years behind the Western timetable. The months are typically 30 days in length, yet the most recent month has 5 or 6 days. September eleventh is recognized as the first day of the New Year.

47. Coffee’s Birthplace – Ethiopia is the nation where espresso was initially found. Henceforth, it is viewed as espresso’s country. It was initially seen by a shepherd named Kaldi, whose goats started pacing fretfully in the wake of eating the plant. The word espresso itself is considered acquired from the southern Ethiopian grounds of Kaffa.

48. Christianity and Ethiopia – There are some intriguing truths about Ethiopia identified with the religion Christian, here they are:

49. Ethiopia and its kin: Ethiopians have been specified in the Bible. The quantity of times changes from 40 to 60 as indicated by various sources.

50. There are a considerable number of temples here, giving Ethiopia a conspicuous place in the world and in Christian history.

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Did you know?

51. Ethiopia additionally claims that the last resting place of the Ark of the Covenant is at a house of prayer in the sacred city of Aksum, which was previously the capital of Ethiopia.

Islam in Ethiopia – There are some intriguing facts about Ethiopia and its identification with the religion Islam, here they are:

52. Ethiopia has been specified in the Koran. It is additionally worth noting that it was mentioned in the Iliad and Odyssey.

53. Ethiopia likewise happens to be the principal nation where muslim requests to God were held outside Arabia.

54. Al Nejashi is the principal mosque established outside the Arabian peninsula.

55. Ethiopia was the nation in which Mohammed (the prophet of Islam, P.B.U.H) and his supporters discovered comfort when they were mistreated.

56. League of Nations – Ethiopia is one of the nations that has not been defeated in an attack. Italy was vanquished twice in its attempts to do so. The nation was the first to join the League of Nations, which soon ended up being detrimental. The countries fitting in with this class would be given backing known as “aggregate backing.” At the point when mass murders and ethnic purging happened in Ethiopia, the others simply didn’t help out.

57. African Union – Emperor Haile Sellasie asserted that the people of Africa ought to join together and form a singular race. This prompted the introduction of Pan Africanism. This idea emerged to become what is known as the African Union today.

58. Hot Spots – Addis Ababa is the highest city in Africa. Visitors are often surprised to learn that the city is much cooler in temperature than other African cities.

59. Ethiopia is also sometimes referred as “the roof of Africa” as more than 70% of Africa’s mountains are found in Ethiopia.

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Quick/fast facts about Ethiopia

Capital CityAddis Ababa
9°1′N 38°45′E
Largest CityAddis Ababa
9°1′N 38°45′E
Total area1,104,300 sq km
Population99,465,819 (2015)
Official LanguageAmharic
Bordersthe Sudan, Somalia, Djibouti, Kenya and Eritrea.
CurrencyBirr (ETB)
ReligionChristianity, Islam, Judaism and Paganism.
Average Life Span61.48 Years (2012)
Life expectancy at birth indicates the number of years a newborn infant would live if prevailing patterns of mortality at the time of its birth were to stay the same throughout its life.
GDP - per capita (PPP)$1,800 (2015 est.)
Climatetropical monsoon with wide topographic-induced variation
Terrainhigh plateau with central mountain range divided by Great Rift Valley
Natural resourcessmall reserves of gold, platinum, copper, potash, natural gas, hydropower
Agricultural land36.3%
Birth rate37.27 births/1,000 population (2015 est.)
Death rate8.19 deaths/1,000 population (2015 est.)
Sex ratio0.99 male(s)/female (2015 est.)
Government typefederal parliamentary republic
Independenceoldest independent country in Africa and one of the oldest in the world - at least 2,000 years (may be traced to the Aksumite Kingdom, which coalesced in the first century B.C.)
National symbolsAbyssinian lion (traditional), yellow pentagram with five rays of light on a blue field (promoted by current government); national colors: green, yellow, red
National anthem"Whedefit Gesgeshi Woud Enat Ethiopia" (March Forward, Dear Mother Ethiopia)
Industriesfood processing, beverages, textiles, leather, garments, chemicals, metals processing, cement
Exports$3.761 billion (2015 est.)
coffee (27%, by value), oilseeds (17%), edible vegetables including khat (17%), gold (13%), flowers (7%), live animals (7%), raw leather products (3%), meat products (3%)
Imports$10.69 billion (2015 est.)
machinery and aircraft (14%, by value), metal and metal products, (14%), electrical materials, (13%), petroleum products (12%), motor vehicles, (10%), chemicals and fertilizers (4%)
Internet country code.et
Internet users11.538 million
percent of population: 11.6% (July 2015 est.)
Time ZoneEAT (UTC+3)
Calling Code+251
Drives on theRight

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