CM: His Imperial Majesty Emperor Haile Selassie I of The Ethiopian Empire was born by the name Tafari Makonnen on 23 July 1894. His father was a cousin of the then-reigning Emperor, Menelik II. In 1911, Tafari who was then governor of Harar province, married Menelik's great granddaughter, Wayzaro Menen. Tafari became Crown Prince and Regent of Ethiopia in 1917. When Tafari was crowned emperor in 1930, he took the name, "Haile Selassie" meaning 'Holy Trinity'. In 1931 Haile Selassie granted Ethiopia a constitution, which provided for a legislature. Real power, however, still remained with the Emperor. In 1935, Ethiopia was invaded by Italy and the Emperor fled in exile. In a speech before the League of Nations on 30 June 1936, he appealed in vain for military sanctions against Italy. He returned to Ethiopia in 1941 during the Second World War, after British forces had defeated the Italians. In power once more, the Emperor introduced land reform programs and a modern education system. In 1955, a revised consitution gave the vote to all adults. In 1963, he helped found the Organization of Africian Unity (OAU), with headquarters in Addis Ababa, the Ethiopian capital. But many Eithiopians opposed Haile Selassie's authorization rule. Violence spread throughout the country in the late 1960s were made worse by a famine. In 1974, the Emperor was deposed by young radical Marxist army officers. On 27 August 1975, he was murdered by the orders of the new government leaders. Rulling Ethiopia from 1930 to 1974, Haile Selassie I was one of the world's longest-reigning monarchs. Although he wielded power in a traditional manner with absolute authority, he also contributed significantly in modernizing Ethiopia.
[Megakles Rogakos 08/2006]
XANTHAKIS, ALKIS X. George Boucas: The Great Portraitist of the Inter-Wars Period 01-02/1996 Opticon #31, Athens
ROGAKOS, MEGAKLES Silent Dialogues: Multimedia Portraits Throughout Time 2008 The American College of Greece, Athens