Tewodros II ye Qwara Jegna
Emperor Tewodros II's rule is often placed as the beginning of modern Ethiopia, ending the decentralized Zemene Mesafint (Era of the Princes)
In June 1894, Mengesha Yohannes ultimately dropped his claims to the imperial throne and officially submitted to atse Menelik II, ostensibly in expectation of the title of negus of Tigray. Menelik, in turn, appointed him governor, not negus of Tigray. For a while, Mengesha Yohannes demonstrated his loyalty. The conflict subsequently developing between the Italians and Menelik, gave him the opportunity to prove his indispensability to the central government.
During the first phase, in the years 1894-95, the Italians made a number of incursions into northern Ethiopia. Mengersha Yohannes was then responsible for defending the northern borders. He was beaten in the two battles of Kweatit (1894), Senafe (Eritrea) and Debre Hayle (1895): in early 1896 he even retreated from his stronghold Mekelle, but kept the Italians busy until a united Ethiopian army was gathered to face them.
Ras Mengesha Yohannes played an even more important role in the next phase of the conflict. Together with ras Alula, he was largely responsible for organizing and running the intelligence of Menelik II. He exploited his local connections, gathered intelligence and rendered a fairly outstanding command of the Tigrayan army. All these inputs had a crucial role in deciding the outcome of the battle of Adwa in 1896, which ended up as a grim loss to the Italians.
Despite Mengesha Yohannes's retention of "Tigray proper", Eritrea remained in the hands of the Italians. His proposal to sustain the war to push the Italians out of Eritrea was played down by the Emperor, who focused on the control of his own realm. Menelik officially rewarded Mengesha Yohannes with 300,000 silver dollars and married him to Kafay Wele Batul of Yejju(Galla) , atege Taytu's niece. The marriage was meant to cement further the bonds between the houses of Tigray, Shewa, and Yejju. It was obtained at the cost of divorcing his loving wife. Still, Mengesha Yohannes's long expectations of promotion to negus of Tigray were shattered for the second time.
Mengesha Yohannes's final and desperate rebellion (in concert with ras Sebhat of Agame) in 1898 ended with his captivity and confinement at Addis Ababa, starting from 1899, and then in Ankober where he died as a prisoner in 1906.