Principle Threats

Trade in Lions

Lions in Culture

In 1462, it was visited by the Portuguese explorer Pedro da Cintra, who dubbed it Serra de Leão, meaning "Lion Mountains" (html). It is possibly named for the roar of thunder in the mountains behind Freetown, or because the mountain is shaped like a lion (html).

The Sierra Leone National Premier League is the top football league, controlled by the Sierra Leone Football Association. One of the biggest and most successful football clubs is the East End Lions (html)

“The coat of arms of Sierra Leone [was] developed by the College of Arms and granted in 1960. The shield on the arms depicts a lion beneath a zigzag border, representing the Lion Mountains, after which the country was named. It also shows three torches which are meant to symbolize peace and dignity. At the base are wavy bars depicting the sea. The supporters of the shield are lions, similar to those on the colonial badge. The three main colours from the shield - green, white and blue - were used to form the flag. The green represents agricultural and natural resources, the blue represents the Harbour of Freetown and the white represents unity and justice. At the bottom of the shield, the national motto can be seen ” (html).


Lion of Africa: Statue of Peace  “…to express a sincere commitment for durable Peace - to symbolize the strength of its people - and raise awareness for all the good and beauty Sierra Leone has to offer, a 180 ft big Lion Statue- LION OF AFRICA- will be placed on top of the hills near Lumley Beach in Freetown.  Like the Jesus statue in Rio de Janeiro/Brazil, its reach and impact will be overwhelming and will attract the attention not only from its own people and guests visiting Sierra Leone but especially from the foreign media. Newspapers, magazines and television-stations reaching billions of people around the globe will freely showcase this monument on such enormous scale one cannot buy for money, generating a constant flow of free advertising and Goodwill for the country of Sierra Leone and its peoples.

The LION OF AFRICA will be an inspiring Beacon of Peace at The Gateway to Paradise- on top of the Freetown Peninsula Crocodile Hills with the Leone River at its feet spreading a message into the world that Sierra Leone is back in business! Five years after peace finally returned to this beautiful country, the time has come to focus on the future and surprise the international community with a compelling project inviting the world to re-discover Sierra Leone as a wealthy and peaceful destination for investors and tourists.” (html)


Sierra Leone Company one cent coin dated 1796. The clasped hands celebrated the fact that it was a refuge for freed slaves from the British Empire, runaway slaves from the United States, and Africans discharged from the British armed forces. The first settlers were virtually wiped out by tribal attacks and disease. The colony was re-established under the control of the Sierra Leone Company, which issued this coin, and then transferred to British Crown in 1807 (html)  The Sierra Leone currency is known as the “Leone” meaning lion.

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