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The Food of Myanmar (Burma)

Mandalay City was founded along the Irrawaddy River in 1857 by King Mindon as capital of the last, independent Burmese kingdom. The city was named after Mandalay Hill, situated at the northeast corner of the city. The hill is a holy mount; it is said that Buddha himself prophesied that the great city of Buddhism would be founded at its foot. King Midon created the city according to this ancient prophecy that foretold its creation on the 2400th jubilee of Buddhism.


King Midon, on January 13, 1857, established the new kingdom of Yadanabon, or Ratanapura (The Bejeweled Site), and the new capital and royal city, Mandalay, originally called Lay Kyun Aung Mye (Victorious Land over the Four Islands ). Mandalay derives from the Pali words Mandala (a plains land) and Mandare (an auspicious land).

When King Midon broke the ground for the new capital, he also laid the foundations for the seven main edifices of Mandalay: the royal city with the battlemented walls, the moat surrounding it, the Maha Lawka Marazein Stupa, the higher ordination hall named the Pahtan-haw Shwe Thein, the Atumashi (The Incomparable) Monastery, the Thudhama Zayats (Public Houses forPreaching the Doctrine), and the library for the Buddhist scriptures.

King Thibaw, the son of King Midon, succeeded his father to the throne until the British conquered Burma and Mandalay in 1886. The British turned the royal palaces of Mandalay into their military headquarters and christened the complex Fort Dufferin. Mandalay became the capital of Upper Burma.


During World War II the Japanese captured the city. In 1942, they installed a military camp in the same place, which then was bombed by the Allies. When the War was over, nothing was left of the palace buildings.

On January 4, 1948, Burma gained independence from British rule. The former palace area is known as Fort Mandalay. Several concrete replicas of the palace buildings have been built.

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