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Antananarivo History, Madagascar

Antananarivo, just like other places in the world, comes from a rich history.  The latter was responsible in coining the name for this Madagascar city.  There were several events to which the place owes its existence. Here are some interesting records of the past.

Diego Diaz’s Exploration

Long before, conquering the world was made by an explorer on the basis of collecting spices for trade.  Diego Diaz was an explorer whose route was mainly focused on India - a known spice country.  However, in his quest to reach the place, he found Madagascar.  The area was remarkable for cloves and vanilla, not spices.

Trade Routes

Since Madagascar was close enough to the Indian Ocean, a lot of pirates dwelled there.  They inhabited the land and were believed to have left a lot of treasure that the present-day inhabitants are looking for.  Other stories were also related to the beginnings of Antananarivo.  This includes an interpretation of a legend which brought forth the emergence of the city.  This was associated with the Godnwanaland explosion which made an island float on the Indian Ocean.  The island was believed to be where Madagascar and its cities are standing on right now.

The Malagasy

The Malagasy were settlers on the island that were of Malayo-Indonesian and African-Arab origin.  They were tracked to have migrated in the place for several centuries dating back 2,000 years ago.  The major ruler back then was King Andrianampoinimerina (King Andrianjaka from other historians) whose government lasted from 1787 to 1810. 

The king named his people Merina or highlanders.  HE ruled over twelve hills which included Antananarivo.  He had his kingdom erected on the place where he had exercised his power.  Because of the thousands of warriors dominating the place, he named the entire lot Antananarivo which was also declared a city.  His son Radama, succeeded him and ruled for 18 years.  The latter was responsible for unifying the island.

The French Rule

In the year 1885, the French came by to make the island of Madagascar their own.  After nine years, from 1894 to 1895, the monarchy ended leading to the exile of Queen Runnvulona III.  Another form of government was established known as the colonial administration.  With the existence of the government, Comoro Islands and several other territories were associated.  A strong ally to France, Great Britain also occupied Madagascar during World War II.  This affected the entire nation including Antananarivo.

Madagascar and Antananarivo

Madagascar was an autonomous republic in the French Community.  It obtained independence in 1960 short after its connection with the community in 1958.  After its freedom, the whole nation benefited including Antananarivo.  Now, the city enjoys its sovereignty and boasts of the past heritages.  It has several infrastructures.


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Antananarivo City Ratings

  • Rating75%
    City Rank186
  • History & Culture: rated for 90%
  • Night Life & Entertainment: rated for 70%
  • Family & Fun: rated for 100%
  • Outdoors Activities: rated for 60%
  • Food: rated for 50%
  • Sightseeing: rated for 100%
  • Shopping: rated for 70%
  • Public Transportation: rated for 60%
  • Must visit this place: not rated
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