Though there is archaeological evidence that societies have been living in Nigeria for more than twenty-five hundred years, the borders of modern Nigeria were not created until the British consolidated their colonial power over the area in 1914.
Today it is often used in ethnically mixed urban areas as a common form of communication among people who have not had formal education in English. Because there is little feeling of national unity among Nigeria's people, there is little in terms of national symbolism.
What exists was usually created or unveiled by the government as representative of the nation. The flag is divided vertically into three equal parts; the center section is white, flanked by two green sections.
Other smaller groups include the Fulani, Ijaw, Kanuri, Ibibio, Tiv, and Edo.
Prior to their conquest by Europeans, these ethnic groups had separate and independent histories.
With regard to ethnic breakdown, the Hausa-Fulani make up 29 percent of the population, followed by the Yoruba with 21 percent, the Igbo with 18 percent, the Ijaw with 10 percent, the Kanuri with 4 percent, the Ibibio with 3.5 percent, and the Tiv with 2.5 percent.
Major urban centers include Lagos, Ibidan, Kaduna, Kano, and Port Harcourt. English is the official language of Nigeria, used in all government interactions and in state-run schools.
It is bordered on the west by Benin, on the north by Niger and Chad, and on the east by Cameroon.
Nigeria covers an area of 356,669 square miles (923,768 square kilometers), or about twice the size of California.
It basically uses English words mixed into Yoruban or Igbo grammar structures.
Pidgin originally evolved from the need for British sailors to find a way to communicate with local merchants.
The dry, open grasslands of the savanna make cereal farming and herding a way of life for the Hausa and the Fulani.