9 powerful ancient kingdoms you’ve probably never heard of

From Nigeria to Pakistan to Peru, these monarchies may be little known today but once commanded great authority.Saturday, 29 December 2018

Chimú
This powerful kingdom ruled what is now northern Peru for almost 500 years before being conquered by the Inca around 1470 A.D. The Chimú capital of Chan Chan was one of the largest pre-Columbian cities in the Americas.
Chimú This powerful kingdom ruled what is now northern Peru for almost 500 years before being conquered by the Inca around 1470 A.D. The Chimú capital of Chan Chan was one of the largest pre-Columbian cities in the Americas.
photo by John Warburton-Lee Photography, Alamy

When you think of the powers that ruled the ancient world, the Romans, the Chinese, or the Inca usually come to mind. But there were countless other kingdoms that, while they may go unmentioned in most history books, also had a significant impact on world history. Fuelled by a wealth of resources or a strategic geographical location—or a combination of the two—these entities thrived for centuries before they disappeared. Here are some of our favourites.

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