Season 4 Episode 14: Andrianampoinimerina and the Birth of The Merina Empire

History of Africa

Jun 5 2023 • 35 mins

In our last episode, Andrianampoinimerina reunited the warring kingdoms of Imerina after seven decades of intermittent civil war. While this alone is a significant achievement, Andrianampoinimerina also had to shoulder the considerable burden of trying to repair his economically and socially devastated kingdom. Through smart and efficient use of the Fanamapoana corvee labor system, Andrianampoinimerina directed the repair, construction, and maintenance of hundreds of canals and dams, which greatly revitalized the region's agricultural output. Combined with the end of the Sakalava raids, this resulted in a major population boom. Soil depletion and overpopulation, however, forced Merina people to expand their territory for further settlement, at the expense of neighboring people. Notre Dame Stories Stories 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