Bago, Burma

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"Pegu" redirects here. For the village in Iran, see Pegu, Iran.
Bago
ပဲခူးမြို့
Skyline of Bago
Bago is located in Burma
Bago
Bago
Location of Bago, Burma (Myanmar)
Coordinates: 17°20′12″N 96°28′47″E / 17.33667°N 96.47972°E / 17.33667; 96.47972
Country Burma (Myanmar)
Division Bago Division
Founded ?825
Elevation 13 ft (4 m)
Population (2012)
 • City 284,179
 • Metro 5,739,344
 • Ethnicities Bamar, Burmese Chinese, Burmese Indians, Kayin
 • Religions Buddhism
Time zone MST (UTC+6.30)

Bago (Burmese: ပဲခူးမြို့; MLCTS: pai: khu: mrui., IPA: [bəɡó mjo̰]; Mon: ဗဂေါ, [həkɜ̀]; Thai: พะโค, RTGS: Pha-kho), formerly Pegu, is a city and the capital of Bago Region in Myanmar (Burma). It is located 50 miles (80 km) north-east of Yangon.

History[edit]

The 177 ft (54 m) Shwethalyaung Buddha, constructed in 994 A.D. by King Migadepa
Main article: Hanthawaddy Kingdom

The Gulf of Martaban was colonized by Mon people from the Thaton Kingdom, who established Bago. The earliest mention of Bago in history is by the Arab geographer ibn Khordadbeh around 850 AD. At the time, the Mon capital had shifted to Thaton. The area came under rule of the Burmese from Bagan in 1056. After the collapse of Bagan to the Mongols in 1287, the Mon regained their independence.

In Lower Burma, a Mon dynasty established itself first at Mottama and then at Bago. During the reign of King Razadarit, Bago and Ava Kingdom were engaged in the Forty Years' War. The peaceful reign of Queen Shin Sawbu came to an end when she chose the Buddhist monk Dhammazedi (1472–1492) to succeed her. Under Dhammazedi, Bago became a centre of commerce and Theravada Buddhism.

From 1369–1539, Hanthawaddy was the capital of the Mon Hanthawaddy Kingdom, which covered all of what is now Lower Burma. The area came under Burman control again in 1539, when it was annexed by King Tabinshwehti of the Taungoo Dynasty. The kings of Taungoo made Bago their royal capital from 1539–1599 and again in 1613–1635, and used it as a base for repeated invasions of the Ayutthaya Kingdom.

In 1519, António Correia, then a merchant from the Portuguese casados settlement at Cochin landed in Bago, then known to the Portuguese as Pegu, looking for new markets for pepper from Cochin.[1][2] A year later, Portuguese India Governor Diogo Lopes de Sequeira sent an ambassador to Pegu.

As a major seaport, the city was frequently visited by Europeans, among these, Gasparo Balbi in late 1500s. The Europeans often commented on its magnificence. The Burmese capital relocated to Ava in 1634. In 1740, the Mon revolted and founded the Restored Hanthawaddy Kingdom. However, a Bamar king, Alaungpaya, captured the city in May 1757.

Bago was rebuilt by King Bodawpaya (r. 1782-1819), but by then the river had shifted course, cutting the city off from the sea. It never regained its previous importance. After the Second Anglo-Burmese War, the British annexed Bago in 1852. In 1862, the province of British Burma was formed, and the capital moved to Yangon. The substantial differences between the colloquial and literary pronunciations, as with Burmese words, was a reason of the British corruption "Pegu".

In 1911, Hanthawaddy was described as a district in the Bago (or Pegu) division of Lower Burma. It lay in the home district of Yangon, from which the town was detached to make a separate district in 1880. It had an area of 3,023 square miles (7,830 km2), with a population of 48,411 in 1901, showing an increase of 22% in the past decade. Hanthawaddy and Hinthada were the two most densely populated districts in the province.

Hanthawaddy, as it was constituted in 1911, consisted of a vast plain stretching up from the sea between the To (or China Bakir) mouth of the Irrawaddy River and the Pegu Range. Except the tract of land lying between the Pegu Range on the east and the Yangon River, the country was intersected by numerous tidal creeks, many of which were navigable by large boats and some by steamers. The headquarters of the district was in Rangoon, which was also the sub-divisional headquarters. The second sub-division had its headquarters at Insein, where there were large railway works. Cultivation was almost wholly confined to rice, but there were many vegetable and fruit gardens.

Today, Hanthawaddy is a district of the city of Bago.

Places of interest[edit]

Language[edit]

Main article: Mon language

Further reading[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Luís Filipe Tomás (1976). "A viagem de António Correia a Pegu em 1519" (in portuguese). Junta de Investigações do Ultramar, [Lisboa]. Retrieved 2014-08-05. 
  2. ^ Malekandathil, Pius M C (2010-10-26). "ORIGIN AND GROWTH OF LUSO-INDIAN COMMUNITY in Portuguese Cochin and the maritime trade of India, 1500-6663". Pondicherry University. Retrieved 2014-08-05. |
Bago, Burma
Preceded by
Donwun
Capital of Hanthawaddy Kingdom
1369 – January 1539
Succeeded by
End of Kingdom
Preceded by
Toungoo
Capital of Burma
January 1539 – 30 April 1550
Succeeded by
Ava
Preceded by
Founded
Capital of Hanthawaddy Kingdom
June 1550 – 12 March 1552
Succeeded by
End of Kingdom
Preceded by
Toungoo
Capital of Burma
12 March 1552 – 19 December 1599
Succeeded by
Ava
Preceded by
Ava
Capital of Burma
14 May 1613 – 25 January 1635
Succeeded by
Ava
Preceded by
Founded
Capital of Restored Hanthawaddy Kingdom
November 1740 – 6 May 1757
Succeeded by
End of Kingdom


Coordinates: 17°20′N 96°29′E / 17.333°N 96.483°E / 17.333; 96.483