This film is held by the BFI (ID: 359533).


Amateur footage of scenes in Ethiopia and Addis Ababa at the time of Haile Selassie's coronation, November 1930.

"Leaving Aden". Shots of the shore from ship, pan of shoreline with ships and dhows off Aden. "A country station with local army, police and environments". A small settlement with people wandering around. The railway tracks. Shots from a moving train. Landscape pan with railway lines. "Arrival at Addis Ababa". European and Ethiopian officials on the platform of a railway station. Haile Selassie is saluted by diplomats. Officials greet each other. Haile Selassie gets into a car and is driven off past soldiers at attention and a newsreel cameraman at work in the foreground. Convoy of cars drives off with diplomats. Ethiopians washing clothes in the rocky pools of a river bed. "The Emperor unveils King Menelik's Statue". Haile Selassie and retinue approach the statue of King Menelik II and pulls drape from the statue. The final piece of drape needs removal by a man climbing on to the statue. Haile Selassie and retinue depart. Shots of chiefs in traditional national clothes. The Emperor hosts an open air reception with gold chairs and parasols set out. Cavalry troops ride past. "The Coronation Ceremony". Shots of jostling crowd of guests in indoor space. Various people are seen wearing crowns. The ceremony itself (?) seen over the heads of the crowds. Exterior shot of the state coach with a British Movietone van parked in the background. The Emperor and retinue. Close up of the Emperor in his coronation robes, passing the camera and through the crowd. The state coach is driven off. (400ft). A crowd of Ethiopians and a herd of cattle on a plain amid hills, men herding the cows sheep and horses. "The Grand Review". A review of troops by Haile Selassie (possibly shot the day after the coronation). Arrival of the imperial retinue and guests. Infantry and cavalry displays. Parades on the plain, in both modern uniforms and traditional costume. The parading troops climb the rocky knoll to the imperial pavilion. Further shots of march pasts. (652ft). "Scenes in the streets and market". Ethiopians walking along shop-lined streets. Many flags are flying (in celebration of the coronation?). The main street of Addis Ababa (?). "How debtors and creditors are dealt with until settlement". A shackled man being led along by another man. Slow pan of street, an open space (market?) and crowds. Pan of square with the cathedral of St George (?) and the equestrian statue of Emperor Menelik II. "Spear throwing by Ras Kassa's army". Pan of white-robed crowd on plain. Horsemen gallop by. The galloping cavalry throw spears. A crowd of soldiers on the road break into a tribal dance. Europeans precede the Emperor and his son past troops on parade in front of the grandstand. The imperial retinue follows. Scenes of horseracing and the racecourse. The Emperor leaves a building (possibly a foreign legation) and is driven off in a car. The state coach, the coach is attended by numerous people on foot, drives along a driveway. Shots of the crowded platform from the train as it leaves Addis Ababa. Shots of landscape from moving train. Scenes at a rural railway station and settlement; small boy with hens in hand; people and huts; woman near rail car; other Ethiopians on the station. (1135ft)



  • ABYSSINIA 1930

Technical Data

Running Time:
47.3 minutes
Film Gauge (Format):
16mm Film
1135 ft

Production Credits

Production Countries:
Great Britain