CHAPTER X
ASHANTI AND OTHER NATIVE STATES DURING THE TIME OF OSEI YAW AKOTO AND KWAKU DUA, 1824-67

THE Asantehene Osei Bonsu was succeeded by his brother, Osei Yaw Akoto. The first seven years of his reign were taken up with the Fante war, and it was not till the peace of 1831 that he was able to devote much attention to home affairs. The chief event that is remembered of this period is that the old feud between Kumasi and Juaben broke out into open war. The two states had been on bad terms at intervals ever since the battle of Feyiase; on that occasion the Juaben men had actually captured Ntim Gyakari, and had taken the gold bangle on his arm, which had intercepted the first blow struck at him, and the gold wari pieces with which he was playing. According to Ahuren tradition, Kumasi fought no fewer than seven wars with Juaben to make the Juaben men give up these relics. Juaben, moreover (perhaps on the strength of this exploit), was always inclined to claim equality with Kumasi, and had actually persuaded Bowdich and Dupuis into regarding it as an independent state.

The occasion of this present war was twofold. Kwasi Boaten the Juabenhene had helped to recapture the Golden Stool at the disaster of Akantamasu; but he had not recaptured a box of gold dust which had been with it, and on his return he was accused of having appropriated it. On top of this quarrel there ensued another; a Juaben man who was in trouble with the Juabenhene fled to Kumasi, and the Juabenhene sent to demand his head. The Asantehene refused to have the man executed without going into the case, and summoned the Juabenhene to Kumasi. The pride of Juaben was aroused, hot words passed, and the matter reached such a stage that war was the only solution.1 The Juaben found themselves at war not only with Kumasi but with the whole of

____________________
1
The Kumasi tradition ( Fuller, 82-3) says that Juaben refused to come to Kumasi, and not only insulted the Kumasi messenger but went so far as to abuse the Asantehene. The Juaben version ( Rattray, Ashanti Law and Constitution, 172-3) is that the Juabenhene executed the man himself, after having at the Asantehene's request promised to spare his life.

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