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1. A region of eastern Africa, comprising Zanzibar Island and several adjacent islands off the northeast coast of Tanzania. Arab and Portuguese traders visited the region in early times, and it was controlled by Omanis in the 1700s and 1800s before being established as a protectorate by Britain in 1890. Zanzibar became an independent sultanate in 1963, but a republic was declared after an uprising in 1964, and Zanzibar joined Tanganyika later that year to form Tanzania.
2. A city of Tanzania on the western coast of Zanzibar Island. Founded in the 1500s as a Portuguese trading post, it was a major center of the East African ivory trade in the 1800s.
(Placename) an island in the Indian Ocean, off the E coast of Africa: settled by Persians and Arabs from the 7th century onwards; became a flourishing trading centre for slaves, ivory, and cloves; made a British protectorate in 1890, becoming independent within the Commonwealth in 1963 and a republic in 1964; joined with Tanganyika in 1964 to form the United Republic of Tanzania. Pop: 622 459 (2002)
Zan•zi•bar(ˈzæn zəˌbɑr, ˌzæn zəˈbɑr)
1. an island off the E coast of Africa: with Pemba and adjacent small islands it formerly comprised a British protectorate that became independent in 1963; now part of Tanzania. 640 sq. mi. (1658 sq. km).
2. a seaport on W Zanzibar. 157,634.