maldives history

History of the Maldives

Historical evidence indicates that the Maldives were settled more than 2,500 years ago.

The Maldives was introduced to the outside world through the cowry shells centuries ago. The cowry shell was used in several countries as a currency of exchange and for personal adornment. The Maldives has been an independent state throughout its known history, except for a brief period of 15 years during the Portuguese occupation in the 16th century.

The Maldives became a British Protectorate in 1887 and remained so until 26th of July 1965. The independent Maldives reverted from a Sultanate to a Republic on the 11th of November 1968.

The first written constitution was proclaimed in 1932.

1st Century AD Roman manual of navigation Periplus Mari
  Erithraei mentions islands assumed to be Maldives
2nd Century AD Ptolemy refers to Maldives in his geography.
362 AD Roman historian records visit of delegation to Rome bearing gifts to Emperor Julian.
662 AD Historical Chinese document records the King of Maldives sent gifts to Chinese Emperor Kao-Tsung of Tang Dynasty.
1153 Maldives convert to Islam
1558 Portuguese invade Maldives
1573 Mohamed Thakurufaanu liberates Maldives from the Portuguese
1752 The Malabars invade and rule for 3 months
1887 Protectorate agreement with Great Britain
1932 First constitution enacted
1953 The first Republic
1954 Failure of the first Republic
1965 Independence from the British
1968 End of the monarchy, beginning of the second Republic
1972 Development of the first island resort
1972 Arrival of first tourists to island resorts



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