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This page contains two versions of the list of kings of Burundi, the traditional version before 1680 and the modern genealogy. The regnal names of Burundian sovereigns, titled Mwami, followed a cycle: Ntare (meaning 'lion'), Mwezi (meaning 'moon'), Mutaga, and Mwambutsa. Traditionally, it was thought that there had been four complete cycles but the modern genealogy indicates that there were only two complete cycles, starting with Ntare III Rushatsi.

Mwami of Burundi
Coat of arms of the Kingdom of Burundi.png
Coat of Arms of the Kingdom of Burundi
StyleHis Majesty the Mwami of Burundi
First monarchMwami Ntare III Rushatsi
Last monarchMwami Ntare V Ndizeye
Abolition28 November 1966
ResidenceGitega and Bujumbura, Burundi
Pretender(s)Princess Rosa Paula Iribagiza

In the 16th century, Burundi was a kingdom characterized by a hierarchical political authority and tributary economic exchange. A king (mwami) headed a princely aristocracy (ganwa) which owned most of the land governing its subjects with superiority and required a tribute, or tax, from local farmers and herders who lived in forests. The Tutsi monarchy ruled the nation for centuries, but became largely ceremonial with the colonization of the nation by the German Empire in 1899. The kings continued to nominally rule through the colonial period, and the monarchy continued after the nation gained independence from Belgium in 1962. Burundi ceased to be a monarchy when king Ntare V Ndizeye was deposed by his Prime Minister and Chief of Staff, Capt. Michel Micombero, who abolished the monarchy and declared a republic following the November 1966 coup d'état.[1]


Kings of BurundiEdit

The traditional list of Kings of Burundi. The dates before 1900 are estimates.

  • Ntare I Rushatsi Cambarantama: c.1530–c.1550
  • Mwezi I Baridamunka: c.1550–c.1580
  • Mutaga I Mutabazi: c.1580–c.1600
  • Mwambutsa I Nkomati: c.1600–c.1620
  • Ntare II Kibogora: c.1620–c.1650
  • Mwezi II Nyaburunga: c.1650–c.1680
  • Mutaga II Senyamwiza Mutamo: c.1680–c.1700
  • Mwambutsa II Nyarushamba: c.1700–c.1720
  • Ntare III Kivimira Semuganzashamba: c.1720–c.1750
  • Mwezi III Kavuyimbo (Ndagushimiye): c.1750–c.1780
  • Mutaga III Sebitungwa: c.1780–c.1800
  • Mwambutsa III Mbonyuburundi (Mbariza): c.1800–c.1830
  • Ntare IV Runzi (Rutaganzwa Rugamba): c.1830–c.1850
  • Mwezi IV Gisabo Bikata-Bijoga: c.1850–1908
  • Mutaga IV Mbikije: c.1908–1915
  • Mwambutsa IV Bangiricenge Rubangishamiheto: 1915–1966
  • Ntare V Ndizeye: 1966–1966

Kings of Burundi, c.1680–1966Edit

This is the modern genealogy:

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ New York Times, MICHEL MICOMBERO, 43, DIES; FORMER PRESIDENT OF BURUNDI UPI, Published: July 18, 1983,