In 1837 Tsiomeko, chief tainess of one of the numerous divisions of the western Malagasy known under the common name of Sakalava, was expelled by the Hova and fled to Nossi-be and Nossi-komba.
Similar observances are found in our own day on the Upper Nile; the Nuba and Nuer worship the bull; the Angoni of Central Africa and the Sakalava of Madagascar keep sacred bulls.
A Sakalava chief who had been driven from Madagascar by the Hovas took refuge in Mayotte c. 1830, and, with the aid of the sultan of Johanna, conquered the island, which for a century had been given over to civil war.
(3) Western: the people from almost the northern to the southern extremities of the island are known as Sakalava, but consist of a number of distinct tribes - the Tiboina, the Mailaka, the Tamenabe, and the Fiherenana, &c. South of these last are the Mahafaly, with the Tandroy at the extreme south.
The houses of the Betsileo and Sakalava are very small and dirty, but those of the coast peoples are more cleanly and roomy.
No one tribe seems to have gained any great ascendancy over the rest until about the middle of the 17th century, when a small but warlike people called Sakalava, in the south-west of Madagascar, advanced northward, conquered all the inhabitants of the western half of the island, as well as some northern and central tribes, and eventually founded two kingdoms which retained their supremacy until the close of the 18th century.
About that time, the Hova in the central province of Imerina began to assert their own position under two warlike and energetic chieftains, Andrianimpoina and his son Radama; they threw off the Sakalava authority, and after several wars obtained a nominal allegiance from them; they also conquered the surrounding tribes, and so made themselves virtual kings of Madagascar.
The tradition of their former settlements in and influence over the island was strong; in 1840 they had taken under their protection the Sakalava ruler of the small island of Nossi-be, off the north-west coast, and in virtue of that act claimed a vague protectorate over the adjacent shores of the mainland.
This dispute was the occasion of further intervention on the part of the French, for the Paris government supported the claims of Laborde's heirs, and revived their claim to a protectorate over the Sakalava of the north-west coast, as based on their agreement with them in 1840, ceding Nossi-be to France.
And Mal.-Eng.), (Antananarivo, i 835); Daimon d, Vocabulaire et grammaire pour les langues malgaches, Sakalava et Betsimisara (Bourbon, 1842); R.
On the east coast are the Malagasy, who in physical characteristics stand halfway between the Hova and the Sakalava, the last occupying the remaining portion of the island and displaying almost pure Negroid characteristics.