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Zimbabwe's famed "hanging tree" falls
Associated Press
2011-12-08 06:30 PM
City authorities say Zimbabwe's famed colonial-era "Hanging Tree" crashed into the street after being struck by a workers' truck during highway repairs.

Mbuya Nehanda and other icons of the first uprising against white settlers were said to have been hanged from the tree in 1898.

Witnesses said the 200-year-old Msasa tree, declared a historic site and national monument, fell Wednesday and some workers fled, believing it a sacred omen of "bad things to come." Crowds gathered at the felled tree Thursday to take pieces of it.

The indigenous African tree, or brachystegia speciformis, was commemorated on a Zimbabwe postage stamp in 1996 and political rallies have been held there. Historians, however, have cast doubt it was ever used for hangings.

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