Hundreds of thousands assembled and cheered as Sharia law was implemented in the northern state of Kano. This is the most populous state in Nigeria, and the federal government has come out against Sharia law. The northern states have long been considered quite different from those in southern Nigeria. In the early 19th century there was an Islamic revival, and revolution, in what is now northern Nigeria. Even when the British conquered the area later in the century, the northern areas were allowed to retain many Sharia elements in their law. The northerners have not forgotten their history.