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Ari Nave

The son of Andrianampoinimerina, Radama I distinguished himself at a young age, leading two military operations against the Betsileo and the Boina when he was only fifteen years old. Upon his father’s death in 1810, Radama took the reins of power and continued the campaign to extend the Merina Empire over all of Madagascar, conquering the Toamansing in 1817. Mistakenly predicting that the seventeen-year-old king would be unable to retain control of his father’s extended domain, the Bezanozano and Betsileo peoples rebelled. But with a clear military superiority over all other Malagasy kingdoms, Radama’s army quickly quelled the uprisings.

Shortly after England took control of Mauritius in 1810 the newly assigned governor Robert Townsend Farquhar established diplomatic relations with Radama The English crown sought to eliminate the slave trade in Mauritius for which Madagascar was the primary supplier as well as to limit French influence in the ...