Brazza, Pierre (-Paul-François-Camille) Savorgnan de

Brazza, Pierre (-Paul-François-Camille) Savorgnan de
born Jan. 26, 1852, near Rome [Italy]
died Sept. 14, 1905, Dakar, Seneg., French West Africa

French explorer and colonial administrator.

Born to Italian nobility in Brazil, he joined the French navy. In 1875–78 he explored the Ogooué River (in present-day Gabon). Racing his British-U.S. counterpart, Henry Morton Stanley, Brazza was sent to explore the Congo River region. There he founded the French (Middle) Congo, explored Gabon, and founded the city of Brazzaville (1883), adding some 200,000 sq mi (500,000 sq km) to the French colonial empire. From 1886 to 1897 he governed a colony there.

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Universalium. 2010.

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