Por·to-No·vo (pôrʹtō-nōʹvō, pōrʹ-)
The capital of Benin, in the southeast part of the country on an inlet of the Gulf of Guinea. Probably founded in the 16th century, it was settled as a slave-trading center by the Portuguese in the 17th century. Population: 179,138.

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City (pop. 1994 est.: 200,000), seaport, and de facto capital of Benin, on the Gulf of Guinea, western Africa.

Situated on a coastal lagoon in the southeastern part of the country, it was probably founded in the late 16th century as the centre of the kingdom of Porto-Novo. The Portuguese established a trading post in the 17th century, and it became a centre of the slave trade. It became a French protectorate in 1863. In 1904 it became the capital of the French West African colony of Dahomey. The ruins of old African palaces remain, and there are many colonial style buildings, including the old Portuguese cathedral. Porto-Novo was established as the offical capital of the country by the constitution, but only the legislature is found there; the president and most government ministers reside in Cotonou.

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      city and capital of Benin, on the Gulf of Guinea in western Africa. It is located on a coastal lagoon at the extreme southeastern part of the country and was probably founded in the late 16th century. The city, formerly known as Ajase, served as the capital for the Yoruba state of Popo. It later became the centre of the kingdom of Porto-Novo and flourished as a result of slave trade with the Portuguese. The ruins of some old African palaces remain, and there are many colonial-style buildings, including the old Portuguese cathedral.

      The city is the administrative capital of the government of Benin. Government buildings include the national archives and the library. Porto-Novo is connected by road and rail to the country's main industrial centre at Cotonou and by road to Lagos, Nigeria. It has been somewhat bypassed for commercial and industrial development since the building of a railway to the interior and the improvement of deepwater harbour facilities in Cotonou. Numerous African artisans and guilds are in the city. Pop. (2004 est.) 234,300.

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Universalium. 2010.

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  • Porto Novo — or Porto Novo [pôr′tō nō′vō] capital of Benin: seaport on the Gulf of Guinea: pop. 178,000 …   English World dictionary

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