FEBRUARY is officially “Black History Month” in America, Britain, and Canada, and it is now commonplace during this month to recycle stories about past “great black civilizations” and “black inventions” — except, as demonstrated below, these claims are all mythical. (ILLUSTRATION: Bust of Queen Nefertiti, 1370–1330 BC, wife of Pharaoh Akhenaten. Amazingly enough, some claim she was black.)
The most widely heard claim of a great “past black civilization” is that of ancient Egypt, because of the existence of a number of black, or “Nubian,” pharaohs.
The facts of the matter are as follows: ancient Egypt was founded in 3300 BC, and the Nubians ruled only for a short period between 732 and 664 BC.