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The wonders and myths surrounding Zuma Rock

The wonders and myths surrounding Zuma Rock
Photo by Uzoma Ozurumba- Ask Nigeria

The monolith is four times taller than Nigeria’s tallest skyscraper.

The site is a natural large monolith (or inselberg) found in Niger State, Nigeria. An inselberg is an isolated rock hill, knob, ridge, or small mountain rising abruptly from a gently sloping or virtually level surrounding area. Zuma Rock is an igneous rock composed of gabbro and granodiorite. It is located in the western part of Abuja along Abuja-Kaduna Road off Madala. The locals sometimes refer to it as “the Gateway to Abuja from Suleja.”

It is one of the highest and largest monoliths in the world, standing at about 300m (980ft) above the ground. Its elevation is at about 725m (2,379ft). The Zuba people of Niger State found the rock in the 15th century. They called it “zumwa,” which roughly translates to “a place of guinea fowls.” This accounts for the abundance of these birds around the rock. The Zuba people settled around the rock and regarded it as a spiritual guide. They made sacrifices to the rock to keep them safe. The landmark offered a clear view of the surrounding landscape, so it was also used as a defensive position from other invading tribes.

Formations surface resembles human-like facial features.

Zuma Rock has natural contours on the surface depicting the image of a human face. The natural runoff of water has left the rock surface with a human-like facial feature imprinted on the rock, such as a visible mouth, eyes, and nose. The natives of the community believe the supposed face of the rock represents the deity and ancestral powers protecting and governing the affairs of the people. The Gwari people also see the rock as a gateway for the afterlife. They believe that when people die, their spirits go to the rock.

No precise account pertaining to the origin of the rock has been given by anyone except that it was discovered by the Zuba people in the 15th century upon the instruction of their soothsayer. Over time, the people of Gwari (the same tribe) used the rock as a defense and hideout against invading neighboring tribes and external forces. An interesting myth about the rock is that the it sits on a very large expanse of underground water. It is believed that if the rock is pulled down, an outburst of water will submerge an unimaginable land area.

Forefathers used to make fire from rocks glided against each other.

The rainy season in Nigeria (which is between April and October) comes with another myth about the rock. It is reported that every year the peak of the rock lights on fire. Natives of the community attribute this occurrence to the wonders of their powerful deity and voodoo spells by enchanters. However, scientists have disagreed with this claim. According to science, friction creates moving rocks caused by the sliding slope of the rock. It is during this that the fire comes up.

Dr. Kistso Ngargbu, a geologist and lecturer at Nasarawa State University,Keffi, says, “If it is after rainfall and a particular boulder or broken pieces of the rock got saturated with water, that’s the contact between heat and the main rock body. In the event that it had to slide because water now serves as a lubricating surface, friction is created. We should remember that our forefathers used to make fire from rocks glided against each other. That is what could have happened. Rain water got to the surface, lubricated the boulder and then generated a sliding probably based on a sloppy surface, and in the event of sliding down the fire came up.”

Zuma Rock featured on the one-hundred-naira note.

This sight, which is said to be four times higher than the tallest skyscraper in Nigeria, the NECOM House, was featured on the back of Nigeria’s one-hundred-naira bank note until 2014 when a new design was released celebrating Nigeria’s Centenary Anniversary. Zuma Rock is also higher than Aso Rock and Olumo Rock combined and twice higher than the Uluru Rock in Australia. It has become one of the most important landmarks in Nigeria. On average, it takes about five hours to hike to the top of the rock.


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Admin
1
17 days ago

The wonders and myths surrounding Zuma RockThe monolith is four times taller than Nigeria’s tallest skyscraper. – Express your point of view.

Member
9
16 days ago

Wow just getting all these information about the Zuma’s rock a very good tourist site,it is four times higher than the tallest skyscraper in Nigeria,what site to behold.

Abusi
Member
8
16 days ago

The Zuma rock is an epitome of Nigeria cultural beauty. Such a great wonder to behold. It is so huge and I hope it’s well maintained. Tourists will be attracted to it and I hope we take care of the place where the rock is located.

Member
8
16 days ago

It is wonderful that the Zuba people chose to construct their settlements around the rock and looked to it as a moral compass.

Member
8
16 days ago

Wow so It stands very high above the ground and is considered to be one of the highest and largest monoliths in the world.

Member
8
16 days ago

The fact that the natural features on the surface of Zuma Rock depict the impression of a human face is absolutely insane.

Member
8
16 days ago

Since the landmark provided an unobstructed view of the terrain in its immediate vicinity, it was also put to use as a defense posture against other neighboring tribes.

Member
8
16 days ago

The indigenous people who live in this town have a strong religious faith, and they think that the alleged face on the rock is a representation of the god or gods who watch over and control the people.

Member
8
16 days ago

Wonderful that myth has it that a massive body of water lies beneath the rock, and if it were ever toppled, it would flood an unfathomably enormous region of land.

Member
8
16 days ago

It is important to keep in mind that our ancestors created fire by rubbing two rocks together to build friction between them.

Member
8
16 days ago

This town’s indigenous people believe the rock’s face is a depiction of the god or gods who watch over and control them.

Member
8
16 days ago

It is very baffling that the natural features on the surface of Zuma Rock represent the image of a human face in this way.

Member
8
16 days ago

It is fantastic that the Zuba people made the decision to build their communities around the rock and looked to it as a source of guidance in their moral lives.

Member
8
16 days ago

Natural surface ridges of Zuma Rock resemble the features of a human face. Natural water flow has imprinted human-like facial features on the surface of the rock, such as a visible mouth, eyes, and nose. Natives believe it represents a deity.

Member
8
16 days ago

Strongly devout, the indigenous residents of this town believe that the supposed face on the rock is a symbol of the god or gods who watch over and govern the populace.

Member
8
16 days ago

A great decision by the Zuba people around the rock… In terms of defense, probably that was their believe. I hope we take care of the place where the rock is located.Obviously, the place would bring about development because Tourists will be attracted to it… etc

Last edited 16 days ago by Iyanu12345ogg
Member
8
16 days ago

Wow this is a very high rock which is taller four times than Nigeria skyscraper is well maintain this is a site for tourist because the view of the round is amazing and is good

Member
8
15 days ago

The ridges on Zuma Rock’s natural surface mimic a person’s face. The rock’s surface has imprinted human-like facial features such a visible mouth, eyes, and nose caused by natural water flow. Native Americans think it symbolizes a deity.

Member
9
15 days ago

The Zuma rock is really good natural edifice that beautiful Abuja municipal area and it environ.The rock can be use as tourist centre which can generate for the government.

Member
8
15 days ago

Zima rock is a natural structure to behold fill with myths and legends. It is a place filled with spiritual activities. It is a place that can be done for tourism.

Member
8
15 days ago

With the wonders ansf surrounding Zuma rock, that site is a place worth visiting and to behold the natural and the design of the Master planner.

Member
9
15 days ago

The monolith is four times taller than Nigeria’s tallest skyscraper. My first time of getting this information. We Nigerians really have great places to visit for tour.

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