• Short Summary

    THOUSANDS OF WAILING ETHIOPIAN WOMEN FILLED THE STREETS OF ADDIS ABABAA FEB 15 IN MOURNING FOR EMPRESS WOIZERO MENEN, 71-YEAR-OLD WIFE OF EMPEROR HAILE SELASSIE.

  • Description

    THOUSANDS OF WAILING ETHIOPIAN WOMEN FILLED THE STREETS OF ADDIS ABABAA FEB 15 IN MOURNING FOR EMPRESS WOIZERO MENEN, 71-YEAR-OLD WIFE OF EMPEROR HAILE SELASSIE. THEY KNEW HER AS THE "MOTHER OF THE NATION" - A WOMAN WHO FOUGHT TO IMPROVE THEIR LOT SINCE HER HUSBAND'S CROWNING IN 1930. HER FUNERAL TOOK PLACE A FEW HOURS AFTER HER DEATH IN ACCORDANCE WITH ETHIOPIAN ORTHODOX CUSTOM.

    A TWENTY-ONE GUN SALUTE ANNOUNCED THE DEATH OF THE EMPRESS, WHO HAD SUFFERED FROM DIABETES FOR OVER 30 YEARS. SHORTLY AFTER THE GUN SALUTE, THE DEATH OF THE EMPRESS WAS FORMALLY ANNOUNCED BY ADDIS ABABA RADIO. AT 7 A.M., THE COFFIN OF THE EMPRESS WAS PLACED IN THE THRONE ROOM IN THE OLD MENELIK PALACE. THE CATAFALQUE ON WHICH IT RESTED WAS FLANKED BY A GUARD OF HONOUR DRESSED IN BLACK. THE EMPRESS' DECORATIONS WERE PLACED ON CUSHIONS NEAR HER BODY. OUTSIDE, WOMEN OF THE EMPRESS' HOUSEHOLD CARRIED A PORTRAIT AND JEWELS OF HER AS THEY PERFORMED A DANCE OF MOURNING TO THE ACCOMPANIMENT OF DRUMS.

    AS MEMBERS OF THE IMPERIAL BODYGUARD AND THE IMPERIAL ETHIOPIAN ARMY TOOK UP THEIR PLACES ALONG THE FUNERAL PROCESSION ROUTE FROM THE PALACE TO TRINITY CATHEDRAL, MEMBERS OF THE DIPLOMATIC CORPS ARRIVED. AT 1 P.M., THE FUNERAL BEGAN, THE COFFIN BEING DRAWN BY SIX HORSES FLANKED BY A MOUNTED GUARD. IN FRONT, A COURT OFFICIAL BORE THE EMPRESS' MANY DECORATIONS ON A GREEN AND RED CUSHION; BEHIND, THE EMPEROR WALKED WITH BOWED HEAD AND MEASURED STEP. HE WAS FOLLOWED BY THE CROWN PRINCE ASFA WOSSEN AND MEMBERS OF THE IMPERIAL FAMILY, LEADING CHURCHMEN, GOVERNMENT MINISTERS AND THE DIPLOMATIC CORPS.

    A FUNERAL DIRGE EMPHASISED THE SOMBRENESS OF THE OCCASION AS THE PROCESSION TURNED FROM THE BRILLIANT SUNSHINE INTO THE COOL, TREE-LINED TRINITY CHURCHYARD. AFTER THE COFFIN HAD BEEN PLACED ON THE HIGH CATAFALQUE UNDER THE DOME OF THE CATHEDRAL, A BISHOP OF THE ETHIOPIAN CHURCH CONDUCTED THE SERVICE. THE PRIME MINISTER, TESHAFI AKLILU HABTE WOLD, DELIVERED THE FUNERAL ORATION IN WHICH HE DECLARED: "SHE WILL OCCUPY AN HONOURED PLACE IN THE HISTORY OF GREAT QUEENS AND EMPRESSES OF ETHIOPIA".

    IN HERLLIFETIME, THE EMPRESS WAS A DEVOUT CHRISTIAN AND, LIKE HER HUSBAND, CLAIMED DESCENT FROM MENELIK I, SON OF KING SOLOMON AND THE QUEEN OF SHEBA. THE EMPRESS CAMPAIGNED AGAINST CHILD MARRIAGE; SHE FOUNDED A GIRLS' HIGH SCHOOL: AND HER INTERESTS RANGED FROM A PUBLIC LAUNDRY TO WORK IN A LEPER SETTLEMENT. ONLY THREE OF HER SIX CHILDREN ARE STILL LIVING. DURING THE ITALIAN OCCUPATION OF ETHIOPIAN, THE EMPRESS ACCOMPANIED HAILE SELASSIE INTO EXILE IN ENGLAND.

  • Tags

  • Data

    Film ID:
    VLVAT9TRG1S5LBA25HJHRRRS1I6F
    Media URN:
    VLVAT9TRG1S5LBA25HJHRRRS1I6F
    Group:
    Reuters - Source to be Verified
    Archive:
    Reuters
    Issue Date:
    18/02/1962
    Sound:
    Unknown
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Stock:
    Black & White
    Duration:
    00:01:56:00
    Time in/Out:
    /
    Canister:
    N/A

Comments (0)

We always welcome comments and more information about our films.
All posts are reactively checked. Libellous and abusive comments are forbidden.

Add your comment