Palaces of Stone

Uncovering ancient southern African kingdoms

Mike Main & Thomas Huffman


  • Penguin
  • Johannesburg
  • 2021
  • English
  • Paperback
  • 176 pages


Palaces of Stone brings to life the story of these early African societies, from AD 900 to approximately 1850. Some, such as Great Zimbabwe and Khami in Zimbabwe and Mapungubwe in South Africa, are famous world heritage sites, but the majority are unknown to the general public, unsung and unappreciated. Yet, the stone ruins that have survived tell a common story of innovative architecture and intricate stonework; flourishing local economies; long-distance travel; global trade; and emerging forms of political organisation.


No review for this book yet.


Mike Main has spent 30 years exploring Botswana and its neighbors. A freelance writer and management consultant when not travelling, he lives in Gaborone.

Thomas Huffman is Professor Emeritus of archaeology in association with the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, South Africa.