Meaning of SENEGAL in English

officially Republic of Senegal

Country, western Africa.

Area: 75,951 sq mi (196,712 sq km). Population (2002 est.): 9,905,000. Capital: Dakar . There are seven major ethnic groups in Senegal

including the Wolof , Fulani , and Malinke , each speaking a separate language

and a number of smaller groups. Language: French (official). Religion: Islam (more than 90% of the population). Currency: CFA franc. The climate varies from dry desert to moist tropics. Forests cover about 31% of the total area, about 27% is arable, and approximately 30% is pasture or rangeland. Agriculture is the main industry; peanuts are the most important cash and export crop. Other important industries are fishing, mining, manufacturing, and tourism. Senegal has large reserves of phosphates and iron ore. It is a republic with one legislative house; its chief of state is the president, and the head of government is the prime minister. Links between the peoples of Senegal and North Africa were established in the 10th century AD. Islam was introduced in the 11th century, although animism retained a hold on the country into the 19th century. The Portuguese explored the coast in 1445, and in 1638 the French established a trading post at the mouth of the Sénégal River . Throughout the 17th and 18th centuries, Europeans exported slaves, ivory, and gold from Senegal. The French gained control over the coast in the early 19th century and moved inland, checking the expansion of the Tukulor empire; in 1895 Senegal became part of French West Africa . Its inhabitants were made French citizens in 1946, and it became an overseas territory of France. It became an autonomous republic in 1958 and was federated with Mali (1959–60). It became an independent state in 1960. In 1982 it entered a confederation with Gambia, called Senegambia , which was dissolved in 1989. More recently uprisings in part of the country caused political disorder.

Britannica English dictionary.      Английский словарь Британика.