Known as Lan Xang or “land of a million elephants,” Laos was founded as a unified state by Prince Fa Ngoum (1353–1373), a Lao, in the year 1353. After the state’s disintegration, a long duel between Vietnam and Thailand began over suzerainty of the various kingdoms of Laos. The coming of the French formed an important chapter in the history of the country. The French interest in Laos was subordinate to its interest in Vietnam, and the conquest of Laos was the last stage of French imperialism in Indochina. There was fierce rivalry among France, Thailand, and Britain for control of the Mekong valley between 1866 and 1893. It was Auguste Pavie, who was responsible for bringing Laos under the French colonial hold. The Franco-Siamese treaty of October 3, 1893, established the French protectorate over Laos. Thailand gave up its claim on the territories of the left bank of the Mekong River. The 1904 Anglo-French treaty spelled out in explicit terms the respective spheres of influence of Britain and France. In exchange for a 25-kilometer neutral zone along the Mekong’s west bank, Thailand gave Champassak and Sayaboury provinces to the French in 1904 and 1907, respectively. France had thus completed the conquest of Indochina over a period of 50 years ending in 1907. In the same year, the Indochinese Union was created out of four protectorates, Annam, Tonkin, Laos, and Cambodia.
   French colonial policy was formulated from Hanoi and Laos functioned as a colony of Vietnam. A system of “cross racial administration” was applied, pitting various ethnic groups against each other. Education and health sectors were neglected. Taxation system was oppressive. The response of the Lao to French administrative measures was not passive. In the beginning of twentieth century, resistance movements led by individuals and tribes developed, and the rebellion of a district chief of Savannakhet, Phocodout, in 1901, took two years suppress. Resistance by the Alec and Loven tribes of Bolovens plateau was provoked by French attempts to collect taxes and regulate commerce. In 1908, Va Nam Phoum led a revolt in Phong Saly and Nam Tha provinces. As they were isolated, the insurrections were unsuccessful; however, they generated a tradition that later helped in fostering Lao nationalism.
   See also <>.
    Mishra, Patit Paban. A Contemporary History of Laos. New Delhi: National Book Organization, 1999;
    Stuart-Fox, Martin. A History of Laos. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1997;
    Toye, Hugh. Laos: Buffer State or Battleground. London: Oxford University Press, 1968.

Encyclopedia of the Age of Imperialism, 1800–1914. 2014.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • LAOS — Le Laos, ou «pays du Million d’éléphants», est situé au cœur de l’Asie du Sud Est continentale. Nul territoire dans cette région n’a mieux mérité le nom d’Indochine puisqu’il est situé à la charnière géographique des deux plus vieilles cultures… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Laos — • Separated from the Vicariate Apostolic of Siam by a decree of 4 May, 1899 Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Laos     Laos     † …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Laos — prop. n. a country in Southeast Asia. [WordNet 1.5] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Laos — Forma tradicional española del nombre de este país de Asia: «La política agresiva que el presidente Kennedy llevaba hasta entonces en relación con Vietnam, Laos y Cuba» (Alonso Imperio [Méx. 2003]). La forma lao es el gentilicio de la etnia… …   Diccionario panhispánico de dudas

  • Laos — heißt bei den Europäern das ganze Binnenland von Hinterindien, welches nach keiner Seite zum Meere reicht, bisher nur von sehr wenigen europäischen Reisenden besucht wurde u. deshalb zu den am wenigsten bekannten Ländern Asiens gehört. Das ganze… …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • Laos — Laos, Landschaft auf der hinterindischen Halbinsel (s. Karte »Französisch Indochina«), seit 1893 größtenteils unter Schutzhoheit Frankreichs und in der Verwaltung zu Französisch Indochina gehörig, hauptsächlich das Mekongbecken zwischen 105 und… …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • Laos — Laos, franz. Protektorat in Hinterindien, 255.000 qkm, 605.000 E.; Einteilung in 14 Kommissariate; Hauptstadt Luang Prabang; seit 1893 französisch; der Oberresident von L. (Sitz seit 1901 Wieng tschan am Me kong) untersteht dem Generalgouverneur… …   Kleines Konversations-Lexikon

  • Laos — Laos, die Gebirgsländer Hinterindiens, zwischen Birma, Siam, Anam und China, von einem den Siamesen verwandten Stamme bewohnt, der 3 Mill. stark sein soll, zu den Buddhisten gehört u. einen lebhaften Zwischenhandel betreibt …   Herders Conversations-Lexikon

  • LAOS — Italiae opp. Herod. l. 6. c. 21 …   Hofmann J. Lexicon universale

  • Laos — a country in southeast Asia between China and Cambodia. Population: 5,636,000 (2001). Capital: Vientiane. >Laotian n adj …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • Laos — Southeast Asian land, from the name of legendary founder Lao. Related: Laotian …   Etymology dictionary

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