Chieftainship & Background

The Mangwende Dynasty

Chief MangwendeMangwende is a dynasty from Southern Africa, Zimbabwe commonly known as Mangwende dynasty of Nhowe or Mangwende of Nhowe. It is the royal dynasty of the Nhowe people, who are a part of the Shona tribe now living in Murewa, Mashonaland East, Zimbabwe. The Mangwende dynasty was started by the patriarch of the Nhowe people, Sakubvunza in 1606 who established the Shona traditional state of Nhowe. The name Nhowe refers to the traditional state as well as the Nhowe people. The Mangwende Chieftainship employs a system of collateral succession which alternates between two houses of the dynasty. The two houses of Chieftain lineage are Mhotani ( Bokoto ) and Hundungu ( Chitopi ) houses. The earliest use of the name Mangwende is in 1859, by Hundungu who ruled as Chief from 1859-1878. Hundungu is the first person to assume the ruling title “Mangwende” with proper investiture from the Rozvi, the traditional council. Prior to this, there was no common name in reference to the chiefainship, and previous Chiefs used family names in respect to the clan, "Nhowe".

The totem of the Mangwende clan is “moyo mzukuru” which uses the bull as its symbolic animal. However, in practice, the tribe strictly holds only the heart of the animal as sacred, not the whole animal.