Definitions for madagascarˌmæd əˈgæs kər
Random House Webster's College Dictionary
Mad•a•gas•carˌmæd əˈgæs kər(n.)
an island republic in the Indian Ocean, about 240 mi. (385 km) off the SE coast of Africa: formerly a French colony; gained independence 1960. 14,873,387; 226,657 sq. mi. (587,041 sq. km).
Category: Geography (places)
Ref: Cap.: Antananarivo.; Formerly, Malagasy Republic.
Madagascar, Republic of Madagascar, Malagasy Republic(noun)
a republic on the island of Madagascar; achieved independence from France in 1960
an island in the Indian Ocean off the southeastern coast of Africa; the 4th largest island in the world
A country and island of the east coast of Africa with capital Antananarivo. Official name: Republic of Madagascar.
Origin: From Madagascar, of uncertain origin, but possibly from Madageiscar, reputedly a corruption of popularized by Marco Polo.
The Nuttall Encyclopedia
largest island in the world but two, in the Indian Ocean, 300 m. off the Mozambique coast, SE. Africa; is nearly three times the size of Great Britain, a plateau in the centre, with low, fertile, wooded ground round about; has many extinct volcanoes and active hot springs; the highest peak is Ankàratra (9000 ft.), in the centre; the NW. coast has some good harbours; there are 300 m. of lagoons on the E.; the biggest lake is Alaotra, and the rivers flow mostly W.; the climate is hot, with copious rains, except in the S.; rice, coffee, sugar, and vanilla are cultivated; many kinds of valuable timber grow in the forests, and these, with cattle, hides, and india-rubber, constitute the exports; gold, iron, copper, lead, and sulphur are found, and the natives are skilled in working metals; the Malagasys possess civilised institutions; slavery was abolished in 1879; a quarter of the population is Christian; the heathen section, though untruthful and immoral, are affectionate, courageous, and loyal; Antanànarìvo (100), the capital, is situated in the interior, and has many fine buildings; chief ports, Tamatave on the E. and Majunga on the NW. coasts; the island has been under French protection since 1890, and is a French colony since 1896.
U.S. National Library of Medicine
One of the Indian Ocean Islands off the southeast coast of Africa. Its capital is Antananarivo. It was formerly called the Malagasy Republic. Discovered by the Portuguese in 1500, its history has been tied predominantly to the French, becoming a French protectorate in 1882, a French colony in 1896, and a territory within the French union in 1946. The Malagasy Republic was established in the French Community in 1958 but it achieved independence in 1960. Its name was changed to Madagascar in 1975. (From Webster's New Geographical Dictionary, 1988, p714)