Succession::Menelik II


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Succession On 10 March 1889, Emperor Yohannes was killed in a war with Mahdist Sudan during the Battle of Gallabat (Matemma). With his dying breaths, Yohannes declared his natural son, Dejazmach Mengesha Yohannes, as his heir. On 25 March, upon hearing of the death of Yohannes, Negus Menelik immediately proclaimed himself as Nəgusä Nägäst.<ref name="Mockler, p. 89">Mockler, p. 89</ref>

The succession now lay between Mengesha Yohannes of Tigray and Menelik of Shewa. Menelik argued that while the family of Yohannes IV claimed descent from King Solomon and the Queen of Sheba through females of the dynasty, his own claim was based on uninterrupted direct male lineage which made the claims of the House of Shewa equal to those of the elder Gondar line of the dynasty. In the end, Menelik was able to obtain the allegiance of a large majority of the Ethiopian nobility. On 3 November 1889, Menelik was consecrated and crowned as Nəgusä Nägäst before a glittering crowd of dignitaries and clergy. He was crowned by Abuna Mattewos, Bishop of Shewa, at the Church of Mary on Mount Entoto.<ref>Mockler, p. 90</ref>

The newly consecrated and crowned Nəgusä Nägäst Menelik II quickly toured the north in force. He received the submission of the local officials in Lasta, Yejju, Gojjam, Welo, and Begemder.<ref name="Mockler, p. 89"/>

Menelik, and later his daughter Zauditu, would be the last Ethiopian monarchs who could claim uninterrupted direct male descent from King Solomon and the Queen of Sheba (both Lij Iyasu and Emperor Haile Selassie were in the female line, Iyasu through his mother Shewarega Menelik, and Haile Selassie through his paternal grandmother, Tenagnework Sahle Selassie).

Menelik II sections
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