The 9th-century Berber historian/geographer Al Yaqubi described ancient Ghana as one of the three most organized states in the region (the others being Gao and Kanem in the central Sudan). Its rulers were renowned for their wealth in gold, the opulence of their courts, and their warrior/hunting skills....Ghana is today's "History of" country.
Ghana succumbed to attacks by its neighbors in the 11th century, but its name and reputation endured. In 1957, when the leaders of the former British colony of the Gold Coast sought an appropriate name for their newly independent state — the first black African nation to gain its independence from colonial rule — they named their new country after ancient Ghana. The choice was more than merely symbolic, because modern Ghana, like its namesake, was equally famed for its wealth and trade in gold.
March 31, 2013
"... but the Arabs, who left records of the kingdom, applied the term to the king, the capital, and the state."