British rule in Burma lasted from 1824 to 1948, from the Anglo-Burmese wars through the creation of Burma as a Province of British India to the establishment of an independently administered colony, and finally independence. At the same time, thousands of Indian labourers migrated to Burma and, because of their willingness to work for less money, quickly displaced the Burmese farmers, who instead began to take part in crime, giving themselves a bad reputation. Within fifty years he and his successors had defeated and in many cases subjugated most of the adjacent peoples, creating in the process an expanded nation-state with frontiers resembling those of modern Burma but in the north-west more extensive. With no English wives to tie them down, these Englishmen were fond of attending parties which featured food, drink, opium and fun with dancing girls who usually doubled as prostitutes. [Source: Wikipedia +], By the turn of the century, a nationalist movement began to take shape in the form of Young Men's Buddhist Associations (YMBA), modelled after the YMCA, as religious associations were allowed by the colonial authorities. Myanmar was forced to cede Assam and other northern provinces. However, to prepare the new land for cultivation, farmers were forced to borrow money from Indian moneylenders called chettiars at high interest rates and were often foreclosed on and evicted losing land and livestock. Born on October 24, 1876, Saya San was a native of Shwebo, a center of nationalist-monarchist sentiment in north-central Myanmar that was the birthplace of the Konbaung (or Alaungpaya) dynasty, which controlled Myanmar from 1752 until the British annexation in 1886. After 25 years of peace, the British and Burmese fighting started afresh, and lasted until the British occupied all of Lower Burma. Upper Burma fell to the British and the Mandalay-based peacock throne was toppled after the Third Anglo-Burmese War in 1885. [5], To prepare land for cultivation, farmers had to borrow capital from Indian moneylenders at high interest rates as the British banks wouldn't grant mortgages. Though the final Anglo-Burma war officially ended after only a couple of weeks in 1985, resistance continued in northern Myanmar until 1890, with the British finally resorting to a systematic destruction of villages and appointment of new officials to finally halt the guerilla activity. Aung San and Nu subsequently joined the Thakin movement progressing from student to national politics.[11]. ", Traditional Myanmar society was drastically altered by the ending of the monarchy and the separation of church and state. By processes familiar to Imperial historians, static Burma and dynamic British India had become provocatively incompatible. Harvey wrote in his chapter on Burma in the Cambridge History of the British Empire: The British separated Burma Province from British India in 1937[12] and granted the colony a new constitution calling for a fully elected assembly, with many powers given to the Burmese, but this proved to be a divisive issue as some Burmese felt that this was a ploy to exclude them from any further Indian reforms. Though the country prospered, the Burmese people failed to reap the rewards. They featured comfortable cottages, steepled churches, clubs, schools, libraries, tearooms, and gardens with European flowers. The British separated Burma Province from British India in 1937 and granted the colony a new constitution calling for a fully elected assembly, with many powers given to the Burmese, but this proved to be a divisive issue as some Burmese felt that this was a ploy to exclude them from any further Indian reforms whereas other Burmese saw any action that removed Burma from the control of India to be a positive step. [11], May 1930 saw the founding of the Dobama Asiayone (We Burmans Association) whose members called themselves Thakin (an ironic name as thakin means "master" in the Burmese language – rather like the Indian 'sahib' – proclaiming that they were the true masters of the country entitled to the term usurped by the colonial masters). Traditional Burmese society was drastically altered by the demise of the monarchy and the separation of religion and state. London: Pluto, 2001. Burma is sometimes referred to as "the Scottish Colony", due to the heavy role played by Scotsmen in colonising and running the country, one of the most notable being Sir James Scott, and the Irrawaddy Flotilla Company. Most Burmans provided labor for the Burmese export economy. Burma is sometimes referred to as "the Scottish Colony", due to the heavy role played by Scotsmen in colonising and running the country, one of the most notable being Sir James Scott, and the Irrawaddy Flotilla Company. It [Source: George Webb, Royal Society for Asian Affairs, June 16, 1983 //\\], “Such wider motives of strategy or commerce apart, Theebaw's cruelties and follies were enough to make Burma an intolerable adjacent state for an outward looking Indian Empire rising to the zenith of its power and self-respect. The first hill stations were built in 1820 after it was discovered that British soldiers fighting Gurhkas in the foothills of the Himalayas felt better and came down with less disease in the high altitude than soldiers stationed at low altitudes. Ernest Chew, "The Withdrawal of the Last British Residency from Upper Burma in 1879". //\\, Before the British colonisation the ruling Konbaung Dynasty practised a tightly centralised form of government. From the Japanese surrender to Aung San's assassination, File:British forces arrival mandalay1885.jpg, File:Vegetable stand madraslancer mandalay1886.jpg, File:Royallake dalhousiepark rangoon1895.jpg, File:The British Army in Burma 1944 SE2911.jpg, "The Statement on the Commemoration of Bo Aung Kyaw", "Who Killed Aung San? Ever since the 1820s, the British had regarded Burma as a lucrative sideline to India, strategically vital and, more important, a place to get rich. Saya San (1876 and 1931) was the leader of the anti-British rebellion in 1930-32 that bore his name. The hill station were complete town with sanitariums, churches, cottages, clubs, libraries and activities. [11][16] 19 July has been commemorated since as Martyrs' Day. The economic nature of society also changed dramatically. In Rangoon student protesters, after successfully picketing the Secretariat, the seat of the colonial government, were charged by the British mounted police wielding batons and killing a Rangoon University student called Aung Kyaw. Membership was open to “all gentlemen interested in general society”, the club’s rules stated, but in practice that meant whites only. The British ruthlessly exploited the countries resources and left little in return. British rule in Burma lasted from 1824 to 1948, from the Anglo-Burmese Wars through the creation of Burma as a province of British India to the establishment of an independently administered colony, and finally independence. This massive move towards foreign trade hurt the Burmese economy initially because suddenly a large amount of their resources was being exported for Britain's benefit, thereby taking with it a lot of the resources needed by the Burmese natives to continue living their lives as they had before colonisation. With the arrival of the British, the Burmese economy became tied to global market forces and was forced to become a part of the colonial export economy. The three wars that ensued led by stages to the ultimate surrender in 1885 at Mandalay. Patrick O'Sullivan. //\\, Theebaw, deposed in 1885, was the last of the Konbaungset dynasty of the Kingdom of Inwa, or Ava. It was agreed in the Burmah convention in 1886, that China would recognise Britain's occupation of Upper Burmah while Britain continued the Burmese payment of tribute every ten years to Beijing. Instead, it was Indian workers who migrated to the country once it was under British rule, and competed with the local Burmese for jobs, lowering the standard of living in the country. Upon arrival many went to their boat cabins and wept with shock and prayed for strength after seeing throngs of sweaty Indians naked except for their loincloths. British troops entered Mandalay on 28 November 1885 and Burma was attached to the British Empire on 1 January 1886. But sixty-years on the colonial legacy is not obvious. Imported Indian labor ended up with most of the jobs and whole villages became lawless dens full of the unemployed. [Source: Wikipedia], British in Burma During the Colonial Period. Thus, although the balance of trade was supposed to be in favour of Burma, the society was changed so fundamentally that many people did not gain from the rapidly growing economy. Most of the hill stations were located above 6,000 feet because that seemed to be the ceiling of malaria-carrying mosquitos. On a side-note, Burma was a free kingdom until British expansion came in. Armed only with swords and spears, Saya San's rebels were no match for British troops with machine guns. The name 'Burma' was subsequently rejected upon independence by the ruling junta in favour of 'Myanmar' due to the former's colonial implication. 2019-12-05 Even the Pegu Club, I’m told. In the eighteenth century it was not Burma's isolationism but her almost manic imperialism, ruthlessly asserted against her neighbours and in the end suicidally over-extended, that brought her up against the East India Company. Efforts were also undertaken to increase the representation of Burmese in the civil service. 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