The Ga, or Ga-Adangbe, live in the South-Eastern area of Ghana; in reality they are two populations who have very similar uses, habits and language and are therefore often considered as a single population.
In particular the Ga live in the coastal area, in the area of the capital of Ghana, Accra; while the Adangbe are in the areas of Ada and Somanya, a minority is also found in the neighboring Togo.
With about 600,000 people, the Ga make up about 3% of the total population of Ghana.
The Ga and the Adangbe use the same language, the Ga language, that, in turn, belongs to the Kwa linguistic group.
The two groups, besides using the same language, share numerous habits, first of all the circumcision and the way to assign the names at birth.
The Ga-Adangbe originated in Eastern Nigeriaalthough, according to an improbable tradition, their homeland was Israel, from where they left to then cross Egypt and Nigeria, before settling in Ghana.
The Ga founded the city of Accra about 500 years ago, initially it was a village East of the Korle Lagoon, the current area of Jamestown, that later developed into a port to trade with the Portuguese.
The city of Accra took its name from the ancient Ga kingdom: Nkran, this kingdom was founded in 1510 and ruled by sovereigns called Ga Mantse; the name of the kingdom was later crippled by the Europeans and became Accra.
Nkran literally means "ant", some theories claim that the name derives from the great quantity of ants and anthills present at the time in the area, but the most credible explanation is that the name was coined by an enemy general, who was faced by hundreds of canoes that carried Ga warriors in the lagoon, this general compared the attack of the Ga to a formation of black driver ants.
The Ga believe in the existence of spirits, some spirits are good, others are evil, they also believe that there is a supreme deity that is both male and female: Ataa-Naa Nyonmo or Ofe or Maawu; this is a benevolent deity opposed to Abomsam who is the head of evil spirits.
They also believe in a series of minor divinities divided into two levels: the DzemaWodzi and the Wodzi.
Deities can possess some individuals by turning them into mediums, through which they communicate with humans.
In the beliefs of the Ga there is also a conception of the trinity, different from the Christian trinity: Nwei, the sky, male figure, Shikpong, the earth, female figure and Nsho, the sea, their son.
A system of taboos regulates and guides the behavior of the Ga; there are many attitudes considered taboo such as incest, homosexuality, rape, murder, lack of respect for the elderly and many others.
Nowadays, the Ga are mainly found in the old Accra neighborhoods, the districts of Jamestownand Usshertown, a fishermen's quarters who, with their colored pirogues, face the waves of the Atlantic Ocean.
The Ga are known for their celebrations and funeral processions, and in particular for the shapes of the coffins, that are constructed to reflect the personality and status of the deceased or one of his characteristics when he was alive.
For example, if a person in life was a driver his coffin will have the shape of a truck or a car, while a fisherman will have a coffin shaped like a ship or a fish.