Season 4 Episode 11: The Crisis of the 18th Century Part 1 - Andriamasinvalona's Blunder

History of Africa

Apr 24 2023 • 32 mins

The 18th century will be a painful time for the people of Imerina. The once proud kingdom will devolve into a deadly multilateral civil war, splitting into dozens of smaller kingdoms, each suffering from intermittent famine and domination by foreign enemies. How could the kingdom of Andriamasinavalona, rapidly rising to become a major player in Madagascar, fall so far. The inciting incident lays at the feet of the otherwise great king Andriamasinavalona. The mpanjaka Imerina had spread his kingdom several times beyond what his predecessors would have even considered possible. Could such a large kingdom survive in highland Madagascar? Andriamasinavalona believed that the answer was "no." Instead, he favored transforming the Merina kingdom into a confederation of four smaller states called Imerina Efa Toko, or "Imerina like the Legs of a Cooking Pot." The king's advisor Andriamampandry repeated warned him against the plan, cautioning that the newly empowered princes would immediately seek to make war with each other. But Andriamasinavalona persisted.  Notre Dame StoriesStories highlighting Notre Dame’s work to be a force for good in the world.Listen on: Apple Podcasts   Spotify Support the show Learn more about your ad choices. Visit