The Mino or the Dahomey Amazons were an all-woman fighting regiment of the 19th Century Kingdom of Dahomey, now known as the Republic of Benin). These women were the model for The Black Panther’s Dora Milaje, the warriors that served as security for Wakanda.
The Mino, which means “our mothers,” were of the Fon people, which were the dominant group in Benin (they are also found in Nigeria and Togo). They first came to recognition under King Houegbadia, who ruled from 1645-1685. He is credited with starting this force of women who were originally elephant hunters. His son, King Agaia, who ruled from 1708-1732, expanding the role of the Mino from his bodyguards to a militia, arming them with muskets. They fought in several intra-Africa wars and also fought invading European forces.