South Africa c. 1800


Map Code: Ax00123

While the Dutch East India Company repeatedly attempted to set boundaries for the Trekboer expansion, its oppressive bureaucracy and excessive taxation hardened their determination to expand. This brought them into conflict with the Xhosa, who often retaliated fiercely to these Boer incursions. In 1795 Napoleon took the Netherlands, and the British exploited this opportunity by occupying Cape Colony. Between 1799–1803 a widespread uprising united the dispossessed Khoisan and newly threatened Xhosa against the Trekboer. Several years after its suppression, the British formally took charge in 1806, with one of their first acts being to outlaw use of the Dutch language. This only served to fuel the Trekboer drive further into Xhosa land in an effort to evade colonial controls. Meanwhile, the British initiated a homegrown colonization process by establishing Port Elizabeth in 1820 and bringing in around 5,000 settlers, many of whom were officers and tradespeople, rather than farmers.

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