Imamate of Futa Jallon

Kingdom of Futa Djallon
The Fulani Jihad States of West Africa, c. 1830.
LanguagesPular language
ReligionSunni Islam
 • 1725–1777Alfa Ibrahim
 • 1894–1896Boubacar III (last)
 • Established1725
 • DisestablishedNovember 3, 1896
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Kingdom of Jolof
French West Africa
Portuguese Guinea

The Imamate of Futa Jallon or Jalon (French: Fouta Djallon; Pular: Fuuta Jaloo or Fuuta Jalon[1]) was a West African theocratic state based in the Fouta Djallon highlands of modern Guinea. The state was founded around 1727 by a Fulani jihad and became part of the French Third Republic's colonial empire in 1896.


The Fouta Djallon region was settled by the semi-nomadic Fulɓe over successive generations between 13th and 16th centuries. Initially they followed a traditional African religion.[citation needed] In the 16th century an influx of Muslim Fulɓe from Macina, Mali changed the fabric of Fula society.

As in the Imamate of Futa Toro, the Muslim and traditionalist Fula of Futa Jallon lived side-by-side. Then, according to traditional accounts, a 17th-century holy war erupted. In 1725, the Muslim Fulɓe took complete control of Futa Jallon after the battle of Talansan and set up the first of many Fula theocratic states to come. Karamokho Alfa was appointed Emir al-Mu'minin ("Commander of the Faithful") and first Almami of the Imamate of Futa Jalon. He died in 1751 and was succeeded by Emir Ibrahim Sori, who consolidated the power of the Islamic state. Futa Jallon's theocratic model would later inspire the Fula state of Futa Toro.