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Family tree of Rainilaiarivony (Malagasy Prime Minister) by S. Pasfield-Oliver.

Administrative / Biographical History

Rainilaiarivony (30 January 1828 – 17 July 1896) was the Prime Minister of Madagascar from 1864 to 1895, succeeding his older brother Rainivoninahitriniony, who had held the post for thirteen years. He actively sought to modernize the administration of the state, in order to strengthen and protect Madagascar against the political designs of the British and French colonial empires. The army was reorganized and professionalized, public schooling was made mandatory, a series of legal codes patterned on English law were enacted and three courts were established in Antananarivo. The statesman exercised care not to offend traditional norms, while gradually limiting traditional practices, such as slavery, polygamy, and unilateral repudiation of wives. He legislated the Christianization of the monarchy under Ranavalona II. His diplomatic skills and military acumen assured the defense of Madagascar during the Franco-Hova Wars, successfully preserving his country's sovereignty until a French column captured the royal palace in September 1895. Although holding him in high esteem, the French colonial authority deposed the Prime Minister and exiled him to French Algeria, where he died less than a year later in August 1896.

[Source: Wikipedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rainilaiarivony, 13/3/2013]

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SOAS reference: PP MS 63/02/131 [Order Number: PP MS 63, Hardyman, Box 22]

SOAS reference: CWM/LMS/13/10/1/006/02 - Photograph of the Prime Minister c.1870 [Order Number: CWM/LMS/Madagascar/Photographs/Box 1]