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The founder of modern Ethiopia, Emperor Tewodros 2th, started as a noble man named Kassa Hayla. The divided Ethiopia had many small rulers, squabbling princes. Kassa Hayla was one of them. After the dead of his father he was denied the fiefdom he expected to rule and instead became a shifta (bandit). It seems he had a bit of a Robin Hood image and in 1850, after he also led a few campaigns against Egyptian intruders, he got his land. He then started to fight against other princes. He defeated among others Ras Ali in Ayshal (1853),the prince of Simien ,Tigray and Dedjach Webe in Darasje (1855). Afterwards he crowned himself Emperor. Then he conquered the southern regions of Wollo and Shoa and from the last one he brought back a hostage: the young prince Menelik who grew up at his court

Emperor Haile Selasie.