Yangon known as Rangoon, is the capital of the Yangon Region and commercial capital of Myanmar. Yangon served as the administrative capital of Myanmar until 2006, when the military government relocated the administrative functions to the purpose-built city of Naypyidaw in central Myanmar. With over 7 million people, Yangon is Myanmar's largest city and its most important commercial centre. Yangon boasts the largest number of colonial-era buildings in Southeast Asia, has a unique colonial-era urban core, remarkably intact; the colonial-era commercial core is centred around the Sule Pagoda, reputed to be over 2,000 years old. The city is home to the gilded Shwedagon Pagoda – Myanmar's most sacred Buddhist pagoda; the mausoleum of the last Mughal Emperor is located in Yangon, where he had been exiled following the Indian Mutiny of 1857. Yangon suffers from inadequate infrastructure compared to other major cities in Southeast Asia. Though many historic residential and commercial buildings have been renovated throughout central Yangon, most satellite towns that ring the city continue to be profoundly impoverished and lack basic infrastructure.
The name "Yangon" is derived from the combination of the Burmese words yan and koun, which mean "enemies" and "run out of", respectively. This word combination is translated as "End of Strife"; the city's colonial era name, "Rangoon" is derived from the Anglicization of the Arakanese pronunciation of "Yangon", which is. Yangon was founded as Dagon in the early 11th century by the Mon, who dominated Lower Burma at that time. Dagon was a small fishing village centred about the Shwedagon Pagoda. In 1755, King Alaungpaya conquered Dagon, renamed it "Yangon", added settlements around Dagon; the British captured Yangon during the First Anglo-Burmese War, but returned it to Burmese administration after the war. The city was destroyed by a fire in 1841; the British seized Yangon and all of Lower Burma in the Second Anglo-Burmese War of 1852, subsequently transformed Yangon into the commercial and political hub of British Burma. In 1853, the British moved the capital of Burma from Moulmein to Yangon. Yangon is the place where the British sent Bahadur Shah II, the last Mughal emperor, to live after the Indian Rebellion of 1857.
Based on the design by army engineer Lt. Alexander Fraser, the British constructed a new city on a grid plan on delta land, bounded to the east by the Pazundaung Creek and to the south and west by the Yangon River. Yangon became the capital of all British-ruled Burma after the British had captured Upper Burma in the Third Anglo-Burmese War of 1885. By the 1890s Yangon's increasing population and commerce gave birth to prosperous residential suburbs to the north of Royal Lake and Inya Lake; the British established hospitals including Rangoon General Hospital and colleges including Rangoon University. Colonial Yangon, with its spacious parks and lakes and mix of modern buildings and traditional wooden architecture, was known as "the garden city of the East." By the early 20th century, Yangon had public services and infrastructure on par with London. Before World War II, about 55% of Yangon's population of 500,000 was Indian or South Asian, only about a third was Bamar. Karens, the Chinese, the Anglo-Burmese and others made up the rest.
After World War I, Yangon became the epicentre of Burmese independence movement, with leftist Rangoon University students leading the way. Three nationwide strikes against the British Empire in 1920, 1936 and 1938 all began in Yangon. Yangon was under Japanese occupation, incurred heavy damage during World War II; the city was retaken by the Allies in May 1945. Yangon became the capital of the Union of Burma on 4 January 1948 when the country regained independence from the British Empire. Soon after Burma's independence in 1948, many colonial names of streets and parks were changed to more nationalistic Burmese names. In 1989, the current military junta changed the city's English name to "Yangon", along with many other changes in English transliteration of Burmese names. Since independence, Yangon has expanded outwards. Successive governments have built satellite towns such as Thaketa, North Okkalapa and South Okkalapa in the 1950s to Hlaingthaya and South Dagon in the 1980s. Today, Greater Yangon encompasses an area covering nearly 600 square kilometres.
During Ne Win's isolationist rule, Yangon's infrastructure deteriorated through poor maintenance and did not keep up with its increasing population. In the 1990s, the current military government's more open market policies attracted domestic and foreign investment, bringing a modicum of modernity to the city's infrastructure; some inner city residents were forcibly relocated to new satellite towns. Many colonial-period buildings were demolished to make way for high-rise hotels, office buildings, shopping malls, leading the city government to place about 200 notable colonial-period buildings under the Yangon City Heritage List in 1996. Major building programs have resulted in six new bridges and five new highways linking the city to its industrial back country. Still, much of Yangon remains without basic municipal services such as 24-hour electricity and regular garbage collection. Yangon has become much more indigenous Burmese in its ethnic make-up since independence
Yawnghwe, known as Nyaungshwe in Burmese, was a Shan state in what is today Myanmar. It was one of the most important of the Southern Shan States. Yawnghwe state included the Inle Lake; the administrative capital was Taunggyi, located in the northern part of the state. The Agent of the British government, the Superintendent of the Southern Shan States, resided at Taunggyi and the king's palace was at Yawnghwe. According to tradition in distant antiquity there was a predecessor state in the area named Kambosarattha; the city of Yawnghwe, which gave name to the state, was founded in 1359 by two mythical brothers, Nga Taung and Nga Naung, who arrived from Tavoy and were allowed to build a capital by a prince who ruled the region. The brothers established themselves in the new city. Yawnghwe included the subsidiary states of Mawnang, Loimaw, Loi-ai and Namhkai; the majority of the population in the state belonged to the Intha, Pa-O, Danu and Taungyo people groups. The state of Yawnghwe formally accepted the status of British protectorate in 1887.
Sao Shwe Thaik was the first president of the Union of Burma and the last Saopha of Yawnghwe he married Sao Nang Hearn Kham of the royal family of North Hsenwi. His residence in Yawnghwe town, the Haw, is open to the public; the rulers of Yawnghwe bore the title of Saopha. They were entitled to a 9-gun salute by the British authorities. 1695 - 1733 Hkam Leng 1733 - 1737 Htawk Sha Sa 1737 - 1746 Hsi Ton Sa 1746 - 1758 Hke Hsa Wa 1758 Naw Mong I 1758 - 1761 Yawt Hkam 1761 - 1762 Hpong Hpa Ka-sa 1762 - 1815 Sao Yun 1815 - 1818 Sao Se U I 1818 - 1821 Naw Mong II 1821 - 1852 Sao Se U II 1852 - 1858 Sao Se Hom 1858 - 1864 Sao Naw Hpa 23 Oct 1864 - 1885 Sao Maung 1886 - 1897 Sao Ohn 1897 - Dec 1926 Sao Maung Sep 1927 - 1952 Sao Shwe Thaik Formerly the Saopha of Yawnghwe would welcome the four Buddha images during the annual festival at Hpaung Daw U Pagoda, an 18-day pagoda festival, during which the Buddha images were placed on a replica of a royal barge designed as a hintha bird and taken in a procession throughout Inle Lake.
The elaborately decorated barge was towed by several boats of leg-rowers rowing in unison together with other accompanying boats. The images would be taken from the royal barge and a grand procession would take them to the palace or haw of the Saopha, entering the prayer hall from the eastern entrance, where the images would be kept for a few hours. Nowadays the festival is still held, but the images bypass the visit to the haw and are taken directly to the temple. Salute state Hso Khan Pha Media related to Yawnghwe at Wikimedia Commons "Gazetteer of Upper Burma and the Shan states" The Imperial Gazetteer of India
The Shan are a Tai ethnic group of Southeast Asia. The Shan live in the Shan State of Burma, but inhabit parts of Mandalay Region, Kachin State, Kayin State, in adjacent regions of China, Laos and Thailand. Though no reliable census has been taken in Burma since 1935, the Shan are estimated to number 4–6 million, with CIA Factbook giving an estimation of 5 million spread throughout Myanmar; the capital of Shan State is the fifth-largest city in Myanmar with about 390,000 people. Other major cities include Thibaw, Lashio and Tachileik; the major groups of Shan people are: Thai Yai. Tai Lü or Tai Lue, its traditional area is located in the eastern states. Tai Khuen or Tai Khün, a subgroup of the Tai Yai making up the majority in the Keng Tung area; the former ruling family of Kengtung State belonged to this group. Tai Nüa or Tai Neua. The'upper' or'northern Tai'; this group lives north of the Shweli River in the area of Dehong, China. There are various ethnic groups designated as Tai throughout Shan State, Sagaing Division and Kachin State.
Some of these groups in fact speak Tibeto-Burman and Mon-Khmer and Assamese language, although they are assimilated into Shan society. Tai Ahom: The Tai Ahom people live in India's northeastern state of Assam where tradition says that they established the Ahom kingdom and ruled for 600 years, they speak Assamese as their mother tongue and are a part of the Indigenous Assamese people, though there is an effort to revive the Ahom language. Tai Mao, living in the area along the banks of the Shweli River. Chinese Shan language is known as Mao, referring to the old Shan State of Mong Mao. Tai Khamti; the Tai Khamti an outlier group speaking the Khamti language. Traditionally they lived in the northernmost and westernmost edges of Shan-settled areas, such as Putao-O, Kachin State. Part of the Tai Khamti were once ruled by the Mongkawng Shan. Tai Laing or Tai Leng, a Tai group living north of Myitkyina in the Kachin / Shan State border area. Tai Ting, a group living around the confluence of the Ting and Salween rivers, just to the west of Gengma County, China.
Tai Taɯ: Taɯ means'under' or'south.' This group lives in southern Shan State. Tai Nui, a group living to the south and east of Kengtung town. Tai Phake. Related to the Tai Khamti, this group has a significant presence in India. Tai Saʔ; the Tai Saʔ are part of mainstream Shan society. Tai Loi; the Tai Loi speak a Palaungic language resembling Silver Palaung. They take part in mainstream Shan society. Tai Dam: Also known as the "Black Tai." Tai Don: Also known as the "White Tai." Maingtha, a Shan group that speaks a Northern Burmish language The majority of Shan are Theravada Buddhists, the Shan constitute one of the four main Buddhist ethnic groups in Burma. Most Shan are bilingual in Burmese; the Shan language, spoken by about 5 or 6 million, is related to Thai and Lao, is part of the family of Tai languages. It is spoken in Shan State, some parts of Kachin State, some parts of Sagaing Division in Burma, parts of Yunnan, in parts of northwestern Thailand, including Mae Hong Son Province and Chiang Mai Province.
The two major dialects differ in number of tones: Hsenwi Shan has six tones, while Mongnai Shan has five. The Shan script is an adaptation of the Mon script via the Burmese script. However, few Shan are literate in their own language; the Shan are traditionally wet-rice cultivators and artisans. The Tai-Shan people are believed to have migrated from Yunnan in China; the Shan are descendants of the oldest branch of the Tai-Shan, known as Tai Yai. The Tai-Shan who migrated to the south and now inhabit modern-day Laos and Thailand are known as Tai Noi, while those in parts of northern Thailand and Laos are known as Tai Noi The Shan have inhabited the Shan Plateau and other parts of modern-day Burma as far back as the 10th century AD; the Shan kingdom of Mong Mao existed as early as the 10th century CE but became a Burmese vassal state during the reign of King Anawrahta of Pagan. After the Pagan Kingdom fell to the Mongols in 1287, the Tai-Shan peoples gained power throughout Southeast Asia, founded: Many Ava and Pegu kings of Burmese history between the 13th-16th centuries were of Shan descent.
The kings of Ava fought kings of Pegu for control of Irrawaddy valley. Various Shan states fought Ava for the control of Upper Burma; the states of Monyhin and Mogaung were the strongest of the Shan States. Monhyin-led Confederation of Shan States defeated Ava in 1527, ruled all of Upper Burma until 1555; the Burmese king Bayinnaung conquered all of the Shan states in 1557. Although the Shan states would become a tributary to Irrawaddy valley based Burmese kingdoms from on, the Shan Saophas retained a large degree of autonomy. Throughout the Burmese feudal era, Shan states supplied much manpower in the service of Burmese kings. Without Shan manpower, it would have been harder for the Burmans alone to achieve their victories in Lower Burma and elsewhere. Shans were a major part of Burmese forces in the First Anglo-Burmese War of 1824-1826, fought valiantly—a fact even
Myanmar the Republic of the Union of Myanmar and known as Burma, is a country in Southeast Asia. Myanmar is bordered by India and Bangladesh to its west and Laos to its east and China to its north and northeast. To its south, about one third of Myanmar's total perimeter of 5,876 km forms an uninterrupted coastline of 1,930 km along the Bay of Bengal and the Andaman Sea; the country's 2014 census counted the population to be 51 million people. As of 2017, the population is about 54 million. Myanmar is 676,578 square kilometres in size, its capital city is Naypyidaw, its largest city and former capital is Yangon. Myanmar has been a member of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations since 1997. Early civilisations in Myanmar included the Tibeto-Burman-speaking Pyu city-states in Upper Burma and the Mon kingdoms in Lower Burma. In the 9th century, the Bamar people entered the upper Irrawaddy valley and, following the establishment of the Pagan Kingdom in the 1050s, the Burmese language and Theravada Buddhism became dominant in the country.
The Pagan Kingdom fell. In the 16th century, reunified by the Taungoo dynasty, the country was for a brief period the largest empire in the history of Mainland Southeast Asia; the early 19th century Konbaung dynasty ruled over an area that included modern Myanmar and controlled Manipur and Assam as well. The British took over the administration of Myanmar after three Anglo-Burmese Wars in the 19th century and the country became a British colony. Myanmar was granted independence as a democratic nation. Following a coup d'état in 1962, it became a military dictatorship under the Burma Socialist Programme Party. For most of its independent years, the country has been engrossed in rampant ethnic strife and its myriad ethnic groups have been involved in one of the world's longest-running ongoing civil wars. During this time, the United Nations and several other organisations have reported consistent and systematic human rights violations in the country. In 2011, the military junta was dissolved following a 2010 general election, a nominally civilian government was installed.
This, along with the release of Aung San Suu Kyi and political prisoners, has improved the country's human rights record and foreign relations, has led to the easing of trade and other economic sanctions. There is, continuing criticism of the government's treatment of ethnic minorities, its response to the ethnic insurgency, religious clashes. In the landmark 2015 election, Aung San Suu Kyi's party won a majority in both houses. However, the Burmese military remains a powerful force in politics. Myanmar is a country rich in jade and gems, natural gas and other mineral resources. In 2013, its GDP stood at its GDP at US$221.5 billion. The income gap in Myanmar is among the widest in the world, as a large proportion of the economy is controlled by supporters of the former military government; as of 2016, Myanmar ranks 145 out of 188 countries in human development, according to the Human Development Index. Both the names Myanmar and Burma derive from the earlier Burmese Mranma, an ethnonym for the majority Bamar ethnic group, of uncertain etymology.
The terms are popularly thought to derive from "Brahma Desha" after Brahma. In 1989, the military government changed the English translations of many names dating back to Burma's colonial period or earlier, including that of the country itself: "Burma" became "Myanmar"; the renaming remains a contested issue. Many political and ethnic opposition groups and countries continue to use "Burma" because they do not recognise the legitimacy of the ruling military government or its authority to rename the country. In April 2016, soon after taking office, Aung San Suu Kyi clarified that foreigners are free to use either name, "because there is nothing in the constitution of our country that says that you must use any term in particular"; the country's official full name is the "Republic of the Union of Myanmar". Countries that do not recognise that name use the long form "Union of Burma" instead. In English, the country is popularly known as either "Burma" or "Myanmar". Both these names are derived from the name of the majority Burmese Bamar ethnic group.
Myanmar is considered to be the literary form of the name of the group, while Burma is derived from "Bamar", the colloquial form of the group's name. Depending on the register used, the pronunciation would be Myamah; the name Burma has been in use in English since the 18th century. Burma continues to be used in English by the governments of countries such as the United Kingdom. Official United States policy retains Burma as the country's name, although the State Department's website lists the country as "Burma" and Barack Obama has referred to the country by both names; the government of Canada has in the past used Burma, such as in its 2007 legislation imposing sanctions, but as of the mid-2010s uses Myanmar. The Czech Republic uses Myanmar, although its Ministry of Foreign Affairs mentions both Myanmar and Burma on its website; the United Nations uses Myanmar, as do the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, Russia, China, Bangladesh, Norway and Switzerland. Most English-speaking international news media refer to the country by the name Myanmar, including the BBC, CNN, Al Jazeera and the Australian Broadcasting Corporation /Ra
British rule in Burma
British rule in Burma lasted from 1824 to 1948, from the Anglo-Burmese wars through the creation of Burma as a Province of British India to the establishment of an independently administered colony, independence. The region under British control was known as British Burma. Various portions of Burmese territories, including Arakan, Tenasserim were annexed by the British after their victory in the First Anglo-Burmese War; the annexed territories were designated the minor province, British Burma, of British India in 1862. After the Third Anglo-Burmese War in 1885, Upper Burma was annexed, the following year, the province of Burma in British India was created, becoming a major province in 1897; this arrangement lasted until 1937, when Burma began to be administered separately by the Burma Office under the Secretary of State for India and Burma. British rule was disrupted during the Japanese occupation of much of the country during the World War II. Burma achieved independence from British rule on 4 January 1948.
Burma is sometimes referred to as "the Scottish Colony", due to the heavy role played by Scotsmen in colonising and running the country, one of the most notable beings Sir James Scott, the Irrawaddy Flotilla Company. Because of its location, trade routes between China and India passed straight through the country, keeping Burma wealthy through trade, although self-sufficient agriculture was still the basis of the economy. Indian merchants traveled along the coasts and rivers throughout the regions where the majority of Burmese lived, bringing Indian cultural influences into the country that still exist there today. Burma was one of the first Southeast Asian countries to adopt Buddhism, which went on to become the patronised religion. Before the British conquest and colonisation, the ruling Konbaung Dynasty practiced a centralized form of government; the king was the chief executive with the final say on all matters, but he could not make new laws and could only issue administrative edicts. The country had two codes of law, the Rajathat and Dammathat, the Hluttaw, the center of government, was divided into three branches—fiscal and judicial.
In theory the king was in charge of all of the Hluttaw but none of his orders got put into place until the Hluttaw approved them, thus checking his power. Further dividing the country, provinces were ruled by governors who were appointed by the Hluttaw and villages were ruled by hereditary headmen approved by the king. Conflict began between Burma and the British when the Konbaung Dynasty decided to expand into Arakan in the state of Assam, close to British-held Chittagong in India. After Burma's defeat of the Kingdom of Arakan in 1784–1785, in 1823, Burmese forces again crossed the frontier; this led to the First Anglo-Burmese War. The British dispatched a large seaborne expedition that took Rangoon without a fight in 1824. In Danuphyu, south of Ava, the Burmese general Maha Bandula was killed and his armies routed. Myanmar was forced to cede other northern provinces; the 1826 Treaty of Yandabo formally ended the First Anglo-Burmese War, the longest and the most expensive war in the history of British India.
Fifteen thousand European and Indian soldiers died, together with an unknown number of Burmese army and civilian casualties. The campaign cost the British five million pounds sterling to 13 million pounds sterling or (5 million pounds = 24 million dollars. In 1852, the Second Anglo-Burmese War was provoked by the British, who sought the teak forests in Lower Burma as well as a port between Calcutta and Singapore. After 25 years of peace and Burmese fighting started afresh and continued until the British occupied all of Lower Burma; the British were victorious in this war and as a result obtained access to the teak and rubies of northern Myanmar. King Mindon tried to readjust to the thrust of imperialism, he made Burma more receptive to foreign interests. But the British initiated the Third Anglo-Burmese War, which lasted less than two weeks during November 1885; the British government justified their actions by claiming that the last independent king of Myanmar, Thibaw Min, was a tyrant and that he was conspiring to give France more influence in the country.
British troops entered Mandalay on 28 November 1885. Thus, after three wars gaining various parts of the country, the British occupied all the area of present-day Myanmar, making the territory a Province of British India on 1 January 1886; the British decided to annex all of Upper Burma as a colony and to make the whole country a province of British India. The new colony of Upper Burma was attached to the Burma Province on 26 February 1886. Burmese armed resistance continued sporadically for several years and the British commander had to coerce the High Court of Justice to continue to function. Though war ended after only a couple of weeks, resistance continued in northern Burma until 1890, with the British resorting to systematic destruction of villages and appointment of new officials to halt all guerrilla activity. Traditional Burmese society was drastically altered by the demise of the monarchy and the separation of religion and state. Intermarriage between Europeans and Burmese gave birth to an indigenous Eurasian community known as the Anglo-Burmese who would come to dominate the colonial society, hovering above
Major General Sir Hubert Elvin Rance was the last Governor of British Burma between 1946 and 1948, during the transition from Japanese to British colonial administration. He became Governor of Trinidad and Tobago. Rance was educated at Wimbledon College, joined the British Army in 1916 and fought in the First World War with the Worcestershire Regiment, he transferred to the Signal Corps and in the Second World War played a part in the evacuation of Dunkirk in a senior role with the British Expeditionary Force. He held senior War Office posts directing army training. In 1945 he was appointed Director of Civil Affairs in Burma, restoring British control after Japanese forces withdrew. Reginald Dorman-Smith was appointed governor in 1946, but British Prime Minister Attlee, advised by Lord Mountbatten of Burma, soon decided that Rance should replace him. Dorman-Smith's imprisonment of a popular nationalist leader, Aung San, had provoked anger and the threat of rebellion against the British, while Rance had a more conciliatory approach.
British policy started to move away from an attempt at a slow, gradual transition to independence, it was decided that Rance should co-operate with Aung San and his Anti-Fascist People's Freedom League. Aung San was believed to be less hostile to British interests, less radical in his nationalism than some other political figures, like the communists, for example. Rance became governor on the last day of August 1946, on 27 January 1947 Attlee made an agreement with Aung San that independence would come as soon as possible, with elections in April. British hopes of a smooth handover of power allowing the UK to retain some influence were threatened when Aung San was assassinated in July 1947. Rance's prompt action in making U Nu prime minister within hours is believed to have been a decisive factor in avoiding greater upheaval. In a formal ceremony on 4 January 1948 Rance handed over to Sao Shwe Thaik, president of Burma, while Nu continued as prime minister. By the time he left Burma, Rance had retired from the army.
His formal title was Major General Sir Hubert Elvin Rance, GBE, CB, in 1948 he was made a GCMG. He acted as British governor of Trinidad and Tobago between 19 April 1950 and June 1955, he is author of two reports published by the Colonial Office in London in 1950: Development and welfare in the West Indies, 1947-49 and Report of the British Caribbean Standing Closer Association Committee, 1948-49 and in May 1956 he published an article on Burma’s Economic Problems in the Eastern World. Hubert Rance Street in Vistabella, San Fernando and Tobago was named in his honour. Rance died on 24 January 1974 at the age of 75. Clive Christie, The Karens in Turbulent Times and Enduring People ed. Jean Michaud William Roger Louis, Dissolution of the British Empire in The Oxford History of the British Empire ed. Brown, Low Burma: The Curse of Independence British in Burma King's College Military Archives DNB articles on U Nu and Dorman-Smith Time magazine describes Rance's departure from Burma Category:Burma in World War II