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#577
Madagascar
Keymaster

Throw the tsiny at Farahantsana, settle his accounts in Manareza. Anecdotes historical or small explanatory legends, many Malagasy sites some of which are little known, conceal. This is true of the Barren Islands, located south-west of Maintirano, in the Mozambique Channel. Their names are Nosy Lava – sadly famous because of some of its undesirable inhabitants – Nosy Dondosy, Nosy Androtra, Nosy Maroantaly and Nosy Mavony.
The name Barren Islands or Barren Islands was given to them by Van Keulen in 1753, but they are known since the sixteenth century. In 1529, Ribero and most of the former cartographers call them Basses de Pracel, surrounded by benches which form the maritime boundaries of Madagascar and which extend from the west coast to Cape Saint- André.
The brothers Jean and Raoul Parmentier, in their relationship on navigation along the west coast of Madagascar in 1529, give them the name of the Islands of Fear because, they say, “of the fears they gave us”. They each baptize them with a proper name. The first, near the mainland, Isle Majeure (Nosy Lava); The second, L’Enchaînée (Nosy Dondosy); The third, La Boquillone (Nosy Andrano); The fourth, Lintille or L’Utile (Nosy Mangily); The fifth, Isle Saint-Pierre (Nosy Androtra); The sixth, L’Andouille (Nosy Maroantaly); And the seventh, L’Aventurée (Nosy Mavony).
Let us now turn to literature, first with Farahantsana (the last waterfall), which is understood chiefly in the Kabary. It is one of the most important falls of the Ikopa, near Ambohimanoa, 40 km north and downstream from Antananarivo. This fall is often referred to as “tsiny” thrown beyond Farahantsana so that they can never return.
Another thing is to drink the water of Manangareza or Manareza. It is a river flowing south of the city of Toamasina. Yet very little importance, it has entered into very common expressions. Among these, “ambadik’i Manareza,” beyond Manareza, which is usually cited to say of a matter that it is settled, that it is no longer to be questioned.
The origin of this expression is explained differently, although it is related to one and the same circumstance. Radama I came to conquer Toamasina in 1823. Some say that during this expedition the merina sovereign, who became the new master, was to settle disputes between the indigenous peoples of the region. They are invited, if they have grievances, to appear before him without delay, before he leaves “beyond Manareza”.
More numerous, however, report that before he even crossed Manareza, Radama received the submission of the local kings. A solemn oath then takes place, according to which what is “done and sworn that day and there” would be held forever without it being possible to return to it. The expression “beyond Manareza” thus marks “a public act situated both in time and space”.
But it is a more well-known expression, “nisotro ny ranon’i Manangareza” (who drank the water of Manangareza), which is often cited as the nostalgia of Madagascar that is watching foreigners when they return to their country.
Let us speak finally of the working city built by Jean Laborde in 1837, near Mantasoa and which it baptized “Soatsimanampiovana”, the beautiful that does not change. Created in an ideal location at the edge of the eastern forest and on the Varahina River, Soatsimanampiovana is a beautiful and great achievement at a time when there is almost nothing in Madagascar in fact of industry.
Laborde built two artificial lakes, one of which, the Ranofito, collects the waters of seven small rivers. The waters of these two lakes, retained by solid dams, operate the machines of at least 14 factories, the main ones being soap, tanning, porcelain, glass, paper, iron …
Next to them are the silk-worm-breeding premises, the various shops, the magazines, and, arranged in a harmonious order, the dwelling-houses of the supervisors and the recreational houses The Prime Minister and the officers when they like to go. Laborde forgets nothing, not even his grave, in fine carved stones, which he has set up in the middle of the city.