East Germany the German Democratic Republic, was a country that existed from 1949 to 1990, when the eastern portion of Germany was part of the Eastern Bloc during the Cold War. It described itself as a socialist "workers' and peasants' state", the territory was administered and occupied by Soviet forces at the end of World War II — the Soviet Occupation Zone of the Potsdam Agreement, bounded on the east by the Oder–Neisse line; the Soviet zone did not include it. The German Democratic Republic was established in the Soviet zone, while the Federal Republic was established in the three western zones. East Germany was a satellite state of the Soviet Union. Soviet occupation authorities began transferring administrative responsibility to German communist leaders in 1948, the GDR began to function as a state on 7 October 1949. However, Soviet forces remained in the country throughout the Cold War; until 1989, the GDR was governed by the Socialist Unity Party, though other parties nominally participated in its alliance organisation, the National Front of Democratic Germany.
The SED made the teaching of Marxism -- the Russian language compulsory in schools. The economy was centrally planned and state-owned. Prices of housing, basic goods and services were set by central government planners rather than rising and falling through supply and demand. Although the GDR had to pay substantial war reparations to the USSR, it became the most successful economy in the Eastern Bloc. Emigration to the West was a significant problem – as many of the emigrants were well-educated young people, it further weakened the state economically; the government fortified its western borders and, in 1961, built the Berlin Wall. Many people attempting to flee were killed by border guards or booby traps, such as landmines. Several others were imprisoned for many years. In 1989, numerous social and political forces in the GDR and abroad led to the fall of the Berlin Wall and the establishment of a government committed to liberalisation; the following year, open elections were held, international negotiations led to the signing of the Final Settlement treaty on the status and borders of Germany.
The GDR dissolved itself, Germany was reunified on 3 October 1990, becoming a sovereign state again. Several of the GDR's leaders, notably its last communist leader Egon Krenz, were prosecuted in reunified Germany for crimes committed during the Cold War. Geographically, the German Democratic Republic bordered the Baltic Sea to the north. Internally, the GDR bordered the Soviet sector of Allied-occupied Berlin, known as East Berlin, administered as the state's de facto capital, it bordered the three sectors occupied by the United States, United Kingdom and France known collectively as West Berlin. The three sectors occupied by the Western nations were sealed off from the rest of the GDR by the Berlin Wall from its construction in 1961 until it was brought down in 1989; the official name was Deutsche Demokratische Republik abbreviated to DDR. Both terms were used in East Germany, with increasing usage of the abbreviated form since East Germany considered West Germans and West Berliners to be foreigners following the promulgation of its second constitution in 1968.
West Germans, the western media and statesmen avoided the official name and its abbreviation, instead using terms like Ostzone, Sowjetische Besatzungszone, sogenannte DDR. The centre of political power in East Berlin was referred to as Pankow. Over time, the abbreviation DDR was increasingly used colloquially by West Germans and West German media; the term Westdeutschland, when used by West Germans, was always a reference to the geographic region of Western Germany and not to the area within the boundaries of the Federal Republic of Germany. However, this use was not always consistent. Before World War II, Ostdeutschland was used to describe all the territories east of the Elbe, as reflected in the works of sociologist Max Weber and political theorist Carl Schmitt. Explaining the internal impact of the DDR regime from the perspective of German history in the long term, historian Gerhard A. Ritter has argued that the East German state was defined by two dominant forces – Soviet Communism on the one hand, German traditions filtered through the interwar experiences of German Communists on the other.
It always was constrained by the powerful example of the prosperous West, to which East Germans compared their nation. The changes wrought by the Communists were most apparent in ending capitalism and transforming industry and agriculture, in the militarization of society, in the political thrust of the educational system and the media. On the other hand, there was little change made in the independent domains of the sciences, the engineering professions, the Protestant churches, in many bourgeois lifestyles. Social policy, says Ritter, became a critical legitimization tool in the last decades and mixed socialist and traditional elements about equally. At the Yalta Conference during World War II, the Allies (the U. S. the UK and
The Haw Wars were fought against Chinese quasi-military forces invading parts of Tonkin and the Siam from 1865–1890. Forces invading Lao domains were ill-disciplined and plundered Buddhist temples. Not knowing these were remnants of the aftermath of the Taiping Rebellion led by Hong Xiuquan, a heterodox Christian convert, the invaders were confused with Chinese Muslims from Yunnan called Haw. Forces sent by King Rama V failed to suppress the various groups, the last of which disbanded in 1890. During the latter half of the 19th century, bands of Chinese warriors known as "flag gangs" ravaged large areas of northern Laos. Outlaws and freebooters, the flag gangs were fleeing the suppression of the Taiping rebellion in China. Tonkin was invaded first, when units of the "Black Flags" and the rival "Yellow Flags" crossed the China-Vietnam frontier in 1865 and set up bases in the upper reaches of the Red River Valley. Over the next twenty years the Black Flags and their leader, Liu Yongfu, were to acquire a certain legitimacy and fame in the service both of the Vietnamese King, Tự Đức, of the Qing monarch for their struggle against French imperialism in Tonkin.
In contrast the Yellow Flags, under the leadership of Huang Chung-ying, failed to acquire any legitimacy and, pursued by a combination of Vietnamese, Black Flag, Qing forces, were broken up and defeated. In 1875–1876, following the capture and execution of Huang Chung-ying by the Qing-Vietnamese forces, the surviving Yellow Flag remnants fled westwards into the upper part of the Black River Valley where they harassed the townships of the semi-independent Tai-speaking federation of Sip Son Chu Tai today part of northwestern Vietnam) and northeastern Laos. Further to the west, starting about 1872, bands of defeated rebels fleeing the Qing reconquest of Yunnan began drifting across the frontier into Laos a tributary state of the Kingdom of Siam; these new bands, distinguished by "Red Flag" and "Striped Flag" banners, moved south to occupy nearly all of northern Laos. The Red Flags sacked Dien Bien Phu in 1873, the Striped Flags seized control of Muang Phuan and the Plain of Jars that same year.
Responding to this serious challenge, in 1874 Chao Oun Kham, ruling prince of Luang Prabang, the Nguyen monarch Tự Đức, sent a joint army to expel the invaders. The force was routed, Chao Ung, prince of Phuan, was killed; the victorious Haw moved south to sack Vientiane, while Chao Unkham sent urgent appeals for assistance to the Thai monarch, King Chulalongkorn. In the spring of 1875, Siamese forces crossed the River Mekong at Nong Khai. In the first Thai military expedition of the Haw Wars, they advanced to capture the main Haw base at Chiangkham; the expedition failed to achieve its primary objective, since the Haw refused to give battle and withdrew into the mountains of Phuan and Huaphan. When the Siamese left that year, armed Haw bands emerged to loot and plunder more or less at will. Eight years in 1883, faced with a renewed Haw threat to his capital at Luang Prabang, Chao Unkham again appealed to Bangkok for assistance. King Chulalongkorn dispatched a Siamese army composed of Isan and northern Thai levies.
The resulting expedition, in which the British surveyor James McCarthy participated, "was ill-conceived, inadequately planned, unsuccessful". Thanks to McCarthy's presence, the 1884-1885 expedition is unusually well-documented. McCarthy's personal accounts provide descriptions of the effort and incompetence of the Haw Wars which are more evocative than those in official Siamese accounts. McCarthy had begun his acquaintance with the Lao-Tonkin borderlands in the 1884, when he led a Thai surveying expedition to Phuan and the southern frontiers of Huaphan, as part of his task of mapping the Thai Kingdom. During this journey he travelled through territories subject to regular attack by the flag gangs, he noted that "as we went on, tales of the Haw were brought in, agonizing accounts of their raiding on villages, whose inhabitants they had slaughtered, mutilated or carried into captivity". McCarthy was impressed by the beauty and natural wealth of the regions, but found the inhabitants living a "wretched existence...harried and slaughtered by robbers".
As in Vientiane ten years before, the Buddhist temples had been plundered and desecrated in a search for loot. McCarthy wrote that "the wats had been wantonly destroyed, piles of palm-leaf records lay heaped together, unless soon looked at, would be lost forever". Subsequently, McCarthy travelled to Luang Prabang to consult with the Siamese military commanders and Chao Unkham. There he learned the Haw had advanced to Muang You, which should have been defended by troops under Phraya Sukhothai. However, this Thai nobleman, ill with malaria, had withdrawn to Luang Prabang; the Haw were able to burn the Siamese stockade. With the onset of the rainy season in June and July, malaria was to prove a more potent foe than the much-feared Haw. In McCarthy's words "the rain poured down and sickness prevailed". Accordingly, the Siamese troops stationed in the Laos region remained at Luang Prabang or withdrew across the Mekong to Nong Khai. McCarthy travelled to Bangkok to advise King Chulalongkorn of the situation and await the return of the dry winter months.
McCarthy was ordered to return to Laos at the end of the rainy season. He set out from Bangkok in November 1884, travelling by way of Nan, he arrived at Luang Prabang on 14 January 1885, in time to witness the outbreak of hostilities that were to last three months before ending in failure. The Haw were armed with modern repe
Muang Phuan was a historical principality on the Xiangkhoang Plateau, which constitutes the modern territory of Xiangkhouang Province, Laos. Among the Lao and Thai muang has a dual meaning of “city” or more broadly “country of” and xieng means “walled.” The two terms were used together for major city states under the Southeast Asian mandala model, thus Muang Xieng Khouang would be transcribed as the “Walled City/Country of the Phuan”. The Xiangkhouang Plateau is semi-arid but has important iron ore resources and has been inhabited since the Bronze Age; the region is an important area for trade as it occupies the major passes along the Annamite Cordillera to access Vietnam and the coast. The Tai Phuan or Phuan people are a Buddhist Tai-Lao ethnic group that migrated to the area, now Laos during the 13th century. According to legend the Phuan people were led by Chet Chuong, the second son of Khun Borom who founded the city-state of Muang Phuan. In the mid-14th century Muang Phuan was incorporated into the Lan Xang Kingdom under King Fa Ngum.
Under the Mandala model, cities or kingdoms would enter into tributary relationships with their neighbors depending on regional power. It was not uncommon to pay tribute to more than one power concurrently. In 1434, Muang Phuan entered into a tributary relationship with the Dai Viet. However, by 1478 the Dai Viet attempted to annex Muang Phuan as a prefecture, which contributed to war between Lan Xang and the Dai Viet; the Dai Viet army withdrew during that conflict, Muang Phuan returned as a tributary to Lan Xang. However, the peace was short-lived and by 1531 Muang Phuan rebelled against King Photisarath who put down the rebellion after two years. Throughout the 16th and 17th century Muang Phuan remained part of Lan Xang. During the 16th century, expressive Buddhist art and architecture flourished; the capital was dotted with temples in a distinct Xieng Khouang style, i.e. simple low roofs with a characteristic ‘waist’ at the foundation. In 1930, Le Boulanger described it as ‘a large and beautiful city protected by wide moats and forts occupying the surrounding hills and the opulence of the sixty-two pagodas and their stupas, of which the flanks concealed treasures, obtained the capital a fame that spread fear wide and far.”
In 1707 when Lan Xang was divided between the Kingdoms of Vientiane and Luang Prabang, Muang Phuan entered into tributary relations with the Kingdom of Luang Prabang. By the 1720s Muang Phuan was supporting the Kingdom of Luang Prabang in wars against the Burmese, Siamese. Under Chao Kham Sattha again Muang Phuan went to war against the Governor of Thakhek, a tributary to the Kingdom of Vientiane. In 1751 Chao Ong Lo went so far as to directly attack the Kingdom of Vientiane and was defeated, retreating to Houa Phan where he began to raise another army; the Kingdom of Vientiane named Chao Ong Lo's brother Ong Bun as regional governor of Muang Phuan. The armies of Muang Phuan split between the brothers in civil war, Chao Ong Lo prevailed; however the conflict drained the region so much so that for the next 37 years Muang Phuan remained a tributary to Vientiane. In 1779 the Kingdom of Vientiane was captured by the Siamese led by General Taksin, Muang Phuan as a tributary of Vientiane became a Siamese vassal state while maintaining tributary relations with Dai Viet.
Siam was depopulated from the history of warfare with the Burmese in the 18th century, the destruction of Ayutthaya in 1767. To exert greater control of the lands and people of Muang Phuan, the Siamese launched the first of several forced migration campaigns to resettle large parts of the Phuan population to regions under firm Siamese control. Chao Somphou, the son of Chao Ong Lo, set about restoring and rebuilding the temples and defenses of Muang Phuan. According to some accounts his palace grew to rival that of the King of Vientiane. In 1789 or 1790 King Nanthasen of Vientiane believed rebellion was possible and sent an army to capture Muang Phuan. Chao Somphou fled to Hua Phan, King Nanthasen continued north to capture Luang Prabang in 1792. In 1793 Chao Somphou was imprisoned in Vientiane. Muang Phuan appealed to the Dai Viet, a combined force of 6,000 Phuan and Vietnamese crossed into Xiengkhouang and began to march toward Vientiane. King Nanthasen not wanting to create a wider conflict negotiated an arrangement where Muang Phuan would pay equal tribute to the Kingdoms of Vientiane and the Dai Viet in exchange for the release of Chao Somphou.
Chao Somphou returned to Muang Phuan. By 1800 King Inthavong of Vientiane feared a resurgence of power in Muang Phuan, sent his brother Chao Anouvong to capture Chao Somphou. Chao Somphou died as a prisoner in Vientiane around 1803. Chao Somphou's nephew Chao Noy took control of Muang Phuan in 1803, he was an authoritarian ruler who increased taxes to augment the military. In 1814 he violently suppressed a Khmu rebellion. In 1823 he was accused by a half-brother of seeking independence, was summoned to Vientiane under the guise of answering for his actions during 1814. King Inthavong imprisoned Chao Noy for three years. On the death of his brother King Anouvong of Vientiane, allowed Chao Noy to return to Muang Phuan where he sought a tributary relationship with the Dai Viet Emperor Minh Mang. Whether Anouvong's actions were part of a wider plot to rebel against the Siamese is controversial, what is clear is that Anouvong did rebel and sought to draw all the La
South Vietnam the Republic of Vietnam, was a country that existed from 1955 to 1975, the period when the southern portion of Vietnam was a member of the Western Bloc during part of the Cold War. It received international recognition in 1949 as the "State of Vietnam", a constitutional monarchy; this became the "Republic of Vietnam" in 1955. Its capital was Saigon. South Vietnam was bordered by North Vietnam to the north, Laos to the northwest, Cambodia to the southwest, Thailand across the Gulf of Thailand to the southwest, the Philippines, Malaysia and Indonesia across the South China Sea to the east and southeast; the Republic of Vietnam was proclaimed on 26 October 1955, with Ngô Đình Diệm as its first president, after having served as premier under Emperor Bao Dai, exiled. Its sovereignty was recognized by the United States and 87 other nations, it had membership in several special committees of the United Nations, but its application for full membership was rejected in 1957 because of a Soviet veto.
South Vietnam's origins can be traced to the French colony of Cochinchina, which consisted of the southern third of Vietnam, Cochinchina, a subdivision of French Indochina, the southern half of Central Vietnam or Annam, a French protectorate. After the Second World War, the anti-Japanese Viet Minh guerrilla forces, led by Ho Chi Minh, proclaimed the establishment of a Democratic Republic of Vietnam in Hanoi in September 1945, issuing a Declaration of Independence modeled on the U. S. one from 1776. In 1949, anti-communist Vietnamese politicians formed a rival government in Saigon led by former emperor Bảo Đại. Bảo Đại was deposed by Prime Minister Ngô Đình Diệm in 1955, who proclaimed himself president after a referendum. Diệm was killed in a military coup led by general Dương Văn Minh in 1963, a series of short-lived military governments followed. General Nguyễn Văn Thiệu led the country after a U. S.-encouraged civilian presidential election from 1967 until 1975. The beginnings of the Vietnam War occurred in 1959 with an uprising by the newly organized National Liberation Front for South Vietnam and supported by the northern Democratic Republic of Vietnam, with other assistance rendered by the Soviet Union and its Warsaw Pact communist satellites, along with neighboring People's Republic of China and North Korea.
Larger escalation of the insurgency occurred in 1965 with the landing of United States regular forces of Marines, followed by Army units to supplement the cadre of military advisors guiding ARVN southern forces. A regular bombing campaign over North Vietnam was conducted by offshore U. S. Navy airplanes and aircraft carriers joined by Air Force squadrons through 1966 and 1967. Fighting peaked up to that point during the Tet Offensive of February 1968, when there were over a million South Vietnamese soldiers and 500,000 U. S. soldiers in South Vietnam. On the war turned into a more conventional fight as the balance of power became equalized. An larger, armored invasion commenced during the Easter Offensive following US ground-forces withdrawal, had nearly overran some major northern cities until beaten back. Despite a truce agreement under the Paris Peace Accords, concluded in January 1973, after a torturous five years of on and off negotiations, fighting continued immediately afterwards; the North Vietnamese regular army and Viet Cong launched a major second combined-arms invasion in 1975, termed the Spring Offensive.
Communist forces overran Saigon on 30 April 1975. On the day President Duong Van Minh declared RVN cease to exist, five ARVN generals, one Saigon police chief, numbers of ARVN soldiers and officers commit suicide to avoid being humiliated surrender. On July 2, 1976, the Provisional Revolutionary Government of the Republic of South Vietnam and the Democratic Republic of Vietnam merged to form the Socialist Republic of Vietnam; the official name of the South Vietnamese state was Việt Nam Cộng hòa and the French name was referred to as République du Viêt Nam. The North was known as the "Democratic Republic of Vietnam". Việt Nam was the name adopted by Emperor Gia Long in 1804, it is a name used in ancient times. In 1839, Emperor Minh Mạng renamed the country Đại Nam. In 1945, the nation's official name was changed back to "Vietnam"; the name is sometimes rendered as "Viet Nam" in English. The term "South Vietnam" became common usage in 1954, when the Geneva Conference provisionally partitioned Vietnam into communist and non-communist parts.
Other names of this state were used during its existence such as Free Vietnam and the Government of Viet Nam. Before World War II, the southern third of Vietnam was the concession of Cochinchina, administered as part of French Indochina. A French governor-general in Hanoi administered all the five parts of Indochina while Cochinchina was under a French governor, but the difference from the other parts was that most indigenous intellensia and wealthy were naturalized French The northern third of Vietnam (then the colony of Tonkin was under
The United States of America known as the United States or America, is a country composed of 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, various possessions. At 3.8 million square miles, the United States is the world's third or fourth largest country by total area and is smaller than the entire continent of Europe's 3.9 million square miles. With a population of over 327 million people, the U. S. is the third most populous country. The capital is Washington, D. C. and the largest city by population is New York City. Forty-eight states and the capital's federal district are contiguous in North America between Canada and Mexico; the State of Alaska is in the northwest corner of North America, bordered by Canada to the east and across the Bering Strait from Russia to the west. The State of Hawaii is an archipelago in the mid-Pacific Ocean; the U. S. territories are scattered about the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, stretching across nine official time zones. The diverse geography and wildlife of the United States make it one of the world's 17 megadiverse countries.
Paleo-Indians migrated from Siberia to the North American mainland at least 12,000 years ago. European colonization began in the 16th century; the United States emerged from the thirteen British colonies established along the East Coast. Numerous disputes between Great Britain and the colonies following the French and Indian War led to the American Revolution, which began in 1775, the subsequent Declaration of Independence in 1776; the war ended in 1783 with the United States becoming the first country to gain independence from a European power. The current constitution was adopted in 1788, with the first ten amendments, collectively named the Bill of Rights, being ratified in 1791 to guarantee many fundamental civil liberties; the United States embarked on a vigorous expansion across North America throughout the 19th century, acquiring new territories, displacing Native American tribes, admitting new states until it spanned the continent by 1848. During the second half of the 19th century, the Civil War led to the abolition of slavery.
By the end of the century, the United States had extended into the Pacific Ocean, its economy, driven in large part by the Industrial Revolution, began to soar. The Spanish–American War and World War I confirmed the country's status as a global military power; the United States emerged from World War II as a global superpower, the first country to develop nuclear weapons, the only country to use them in warfare, a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council. Sweeping civil rights legislation, notably the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and the Fair Housing Act of 1968, outlawed discrimination based on race or color. During the Cold War, the United States and the Soviet Union competed in the Space Race, culminating with the 1969 U. S. Moon landing; the end of the Cold War and the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 left the United States as the world's sole superpower. The United States is the world's oldest surviving federation, it is a representative democracy.
The United States is a founding member of the United Nations, World Bank, International Monetary Fund, Organization of American States, other international organizations. The United States is a developed country, with the world's largest economy by nominal GDP and second-largest economy by PPP, accounting for a quarter of global GDP; the U. S. economy is post-industrial, characterized by the dominance of services and knowledge-based activities, although the manufacturing sector remains the second-largest in the world. The United States is the world's largest importer and the second largest exporter of goods, by value. Although its population is only 4.3% of the world total, the U. S. holds 31% of the total wealth in the world, the largest share of global wealth concentrated in a single country. Despite wide income and wealth disparities, the United States continues to rank high in measures of socioeconomic performance, including average wage, human development, per capita GDP, worker productivity.
The United States is the foremost military power in the world, making up a third of global military spending, is a leading political and scientific force internationally. In 1507, the German cartographer Martin Waldseemüller produced a world map on which he named the lands of the Western Hemisphere America in honor of the Italian explorer and cartographer Amerigo Vespucci; the first documentary evidence of the phrase "United States of America" is from a letter dated January 2, 1776, written by Stephen Moylan, Esq. to George Washington's aide-de-camp and Muster-Master General of the Continental Army, Lt. Col. Joseph Reed. Moylan expressed his wish to go "with full and ample powers from the United States of America to Spain" to seek assistance in the revolutionary war effort; the first known publication of the phrase "United States of America" was in an anonymous essay in The Virginia Gazette newspaper in Williamsburg, Virginia, on April 6, 1776. The second draft of the Articles of Confederation, prepared by John Dickinson and completed by June 17, 1776, at the latest, declared "The name of this Confederation shall be the'United States of America'".
The final version of the Articles sent to the states for ratification in late 1777 contains the sentence "The Stile of this Confederacy shall be'The United States of America'". In June 1776, Thomas Jefferson wrote the phrase "UNITED STATES OF AMERICA" in all capitalized letters in the headline of his "original Rough draught" of the Declaration of Independence; this draft of the document did not surface unti
New Zealand is a sovereign island country in the southwestern Pacific Ocean. The country geographically comprises two main landmasses—the North Island, the South Island —and around 600 smaller islands. New Zealand is situated some 2,000 kilometres east of Australia across the Tasman Sea and 1,000 kilometres south of the Pacific island areas of New Caledonia and Tonga; because of its remoteness, it was one of the last lands to be settled by humans. During its long period of isolation, New Zealand developed a distinct biodiversity of animal and plant life; the country's varied topography and its sharp mountain peaks, such as the Southern Alps, owe much to the tectonic uplift of land and volcanic eruptions. New Zealand's capital city is Wellington. Sometime between 1250 and 1300, Polynesians settled in the islands that were named New Zealand and developed a distinctive Māori culture. In 1642, Dutch explorer Abel Tasman became the first European to sight New Zealand. In 1840, representatives of the United Kingdom and Māori chiefs signed the Treaty of Waitangi, which declared British sovereignty over the islands.
In 1841, New Zealand became a colony within the British Empire and in 1907 it became a dominion. Today, the majority of New Zealand's population of 4.9 million is of European descent. Reflecting this, New Zealand's culture is derived from Māori and early British settlers, with recent broadening arising from increased immigration; the official languages are English, Māori, NZ Sign Language, with English being dominant. A developed country, New Zealand ranks in international comparisons of national performance, such as quality of life, education, protection of civil liberties, economic freedom. New Zealand underwent major economic changes during the 1980s, which transformed it from a protectionist to a liberalised free-trade economy; the service sector dominates the national economy, followed by the industrial sector, agriculture. Nationally, legislative authority is vested in an elected, unicameral Parliament, while executive political power is exercised by the Cabinet, led by the prime minister Jacinda Ardern.
Queen Elizabeth II is the country's monarch and is represented by a governor-general Dame Patsy Reddy. In addition, New Zealand is organised into 11 regional councils and 67 territorial authorities for local government purposes; the Realm of New Zealand includes Tokelau. New Zealand is a member of the United Nations, Commonwealth of Nations, ANZUS, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, ASEAN Plus Six, Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation, the Pacific Community and the Pacific Islands Forum. Dutch explorer Abel Tasman sighted New Zealand in 1642 and named it Staten Land "in honour of the States General", he wrote, "it is possible that this land joins to the Staten Land but it is uncertain", referring to a landmass of the same name at the southern tip of South America, discovered by Jacob Le Maire in 1616. In 1645, Dutch cartographers renamed the land Nova Zeelandia after the Dutch province of Zeeland. British explorer James Cook subsequently anglicised the name to New Zealand. Aotearoa is the current Māori name for New Zealand.
It is unknown whether Māori had a name for the whole country before the arrival of Europeans, with Aotearoa referring to just the North Island. Māori had several traditional names for the two main islands, including Te Ika-a-Māui for the North Island and Te Waipounamu or Te Waka o Aoraki for the South Island. Early European maps labelled the islands North and South. In 1830, maps began to use North and South to distinguish the two largest islands and by 1907 this was the accepted norm; the New Zealand Geographic Board discovered in 2009 that the names of the North Island and South Island had never been formalised, names and alternative names were formalised in 2013. This set the names as North Island or Te Ika-a-Māui, South Island or Te Waipounamu. For each island, either its English or Māori name can be used. New Zealand was one of the last major landmasses settled by humans. Radiocarbon dating, evidence of deforestation and mitochondrial DNA variability within Māori populations suggest New Zealand was first settled by Eastern Polynesians between 1250 and 1300, concluding a long series of voyages through the southern Pacific islands.
Over the centuries that followed, these settlers developed a distinct culture now known as Māori. The population was divided into iwi and hapū who would sometimes cooperate, sometimes compete and sometimes fight against each other. At some point a group of Māori migrated to Rēkohu, now known as the Chatham Islands, where they developed their distinct Moriori culture; the Moriori population was all but wiped out between 1835 and 1862 because of Taranaki Māori invasion and enslavement in the 1830s, although European diseases contributed. In 1862 only 101 survived, the last known full-blooded Moriori died in 1933; the first Europeans known to have reached New Zeala