Female Caligula: Ranavalona, the Mad Queen of Madagascar
John Wiley, 2005 - 224 pages
'The seven christians stood together in the bright sunlight, bound with ropes singing a hyme to their foreign saviour as the spearmen advanced. Around them a croud of jostling men, women and children, more than sixty thousand strong...cheered enthusiastically as the spears were driven home and, one by one, the men and women fell and writhed on the sandy ground, their hymn fading slowly into silence...above the still writhing bodies, on a ridge, a score of crosses stood in mute witness, carrying their ghastly burdens, some of whom still lived despite the day and a half they had hung upon the wood.
As European colonists scrambled for control of Africa, a leader arose in the red island of Madagascar who, through ruthless determination thwarted the combined ambitions of all the major world powers. That leader and the author of this holocaust was no warrior but a diminutive woman of middle years, Ranavalona-Manjaka Queen of Madagascar, know to her subjects more simply as Ma Dieu. Under Ranavalona's despotic rule, hundreds of thousands of her people, possibly one-half of Madagascar's entire population, were murdered, starved or simply worked to death by her express command, while she enjoyed an eccentric and debauched lifestyle. For these characteristics, European history has remembered her reign as that of the Female Caligula.
What people are saying - Write a review
FEMALE CALIGULA: Ranavalona, the Mad Queen of MadagascarUser Review - Kirkus
The story of an African queen whose megalomania reached intergalactic proportions as she sought to protect her island against imperial designs. By the reckoning of anthropologist and filmmaker Laidler ... Read full review
The Great Red Island
Polynesians and Pirates
16 other sections not shown
Other editions - View all
allowed already Antananarivo appears arms army arrived attack attempt became began blood British brought capital Captain carried Christian close coast colonial command complete continued court dead death demanded Despite doubt effect European execution expected face finally forced foreign Fort Dauphin four France French friends further gave given hand head held honour immediately important island Jean Laborde journey King king's Laborde Lambert land later lived Madagascar Malagasy Mauritius Merina missionaries monarch months native nobles officers once ordered palace passed perhaps position possessed present priests Prince Rakoto queen Radama Ranavalona refused remained rest returned royal rule Sakalava secure seems sent ship short simply slaves society soldiers soon success taken throne took trade traditional traveller tribes true turned village whole young