Xaaso was a West African kingdom of the seventeenth to nineteenth centuries, occupying territory
in what is today Senegal and the
Region of Mali.
capital was at Medina, Senegal
Seated at the head of the Senegal
, the Khasso kingdom was composed of Peuls
who had immigrated to the area and
integrated with the local Malinké
populations. Séga Doua (r. 1681
- 1725) is remembered as the first Fankamala
(king) of the Khasso, and his dynasty
would last until the death of his descendant Demba Séga in 1796.
Following a civil war between his sons Dibba Samballa et Demba
Maddy, the kingdom fragmented into five smaller states, the most
powerful of which was Dembaya under Hawa Demba Diallo (r.
Like the Bambara Empire
to the east,
the Khasso kingdoms depended heavily on the slave trade
for their economy. A
family's status was indicated by the number of slaves it owned,
leading to wars for the sole purpose of taking more captives.
led the Khasso into increasing contact with the European settlements of Africa's west coast,
particularly the French.
In 1857, Toucouleur
conqueror El Hadj
attacked the Khasso as part of
, but was repulsed at Medina Fort
with the aid of the
Khasso's French allies, particularly General Louis Faidherbe
. However, the Khasso found
themselves increasingly under French control until they were
assimilated into French Sudan
Present-day inhabitants of this region often identify themselves as