Rhodes Grave

As Cecil Rhodes visited various sites in the Matapos Hills, he came across this Ndebele sacred place known as Malindidzimu, or 'place of benevolent spirits'. He called it 'View of the World' and decided that this was to be his burial place. Rhodes Grave offers fabulous views over the Matapos.

About Rhodes Grave

Cecil John Rhodes is buried at the top of Malindidzimu, known to the local tribes as "the hill of spirits" and to Rhodes as "World's View". There is the most incredible view out over the extensive hills from the top of the hill. Other early white settlers such as Sir Leander Starr Jameson are also buried there and there is a memorial to the Shangani patrol, who were killed in a battle between white settlers and the Ndebele people. Visitors will be guided to the top of what is a steep climb by a park ranger who will explain the different viewpoints that can be seen from the top.

The History of Cecil Rhodes

The hill on which Cecil Rhodes is buried is called Malindidzimu, the legendary place of benevolent spirits, and here he used to rest and dream of his beloved Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) and its development, and of further expansion to the north of Africa. He came across the site by chance when riding through the hills with lord Grey (the administrator who succeeded Dr Jameson), and it appealed to him greatly, as it has done to countless thousands of visitors since then.

As he remarked at the time- "The peacefulness of it all: the chaotic grandeur of it: it creates a feeling of awe and brings home to one how very small we all are." He then decided that he would be buried there and that the remains of the Allan Wilson Party should be brought to the Matopos and placed inside the Allan Wilson Memorial, which he had in mind to perpetuate the memory of that band of brave men. So much was he impressed by the vastness of the view and its grandeur that, before it became a familiar resort to him, he was greatly distressed when he lost track of it; and implored Mr. J. G. McDonald (after wards Sir James) his agent, and close friend, and others of his entourage, to re-discover it all at costs.

This was done after several days' search, to Cecil Rhodes' great relief, and he was constantly to be found here admiring the view and meditating on the vast amount of work yet to be done. But he never described it as "The World's View": "A view of the World" he called it. The funeral of Cecil John Rhodes at Matopos, Zimbabwe.

The funeral of Cecil John Rhodes took place on the 10th of April, 1902.There were no motor cars then, but every imaginable conveyance of those times was brought into use for the occasion - Zeederberg's coaches which used to convey mails and passengers throughout Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) and to and
from the South, buckboards, Cape carts, all drawn by spans of mules, utility carts, ox-wagons and bicycles, while there was a big contingent on horseback.

Until three weeks previously the road was merely a rough cattle track, and despite the work put into it was difficult to negotiate at times, particularly on entering the hills where gangs of work men were placed at various points to make very necessary repairs after the passage of heavy vehicles.

At the main out span the mules drawing the gun carriage were replaced by twelve black oxen, which had been specially trained during the preceding fortnight to mount the steep approaches with a heavy load; and to the relief of those in charge the oxen at these points took the strain, as was said at
the time. "As quietly as if they were ploughing a furrow"; and gun carriage arrived safely at the summit.

Troopers of the British South African Police had been stationed at the difficult sections of the route holding guide ropes attached to the gun carriage in case the oxen failed to negotiate the slippery slopes.  
 
Two of the most impressive incidents in the proceedings apart from the religious Service and the oration by the Bishop of Mashonaland, were the Royal Salute, or "Bayethe", given in a mighty roar by thousands of Africans from Lobengula's Ndebele tribe  as the gun carriage approached, and the way in which the indunas came forward and individually declaimed over the grave expressing their sorrow at the passing of a great Chief.