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Sunday, 15 December 2013

Cape Town

Dutch sailor Jan van Riebeeck established a resupply camp for the Dutch East India Company on April 6, 1652, which eventually became the South African city of Cape Town.

Arrival of Jan van Riebeeck in Table Bay by Charles Bell

Jan van Riebeeck also established the gardens at Kirstenbosch in order to provide fresh vegetables and fruit for Dutch East India Company ships.

The Dutch controlled the settlement (with the help of a French garrison) from 1781 to 1795, when it was bought by the British during the Napoleonic War for $6 million. It reverted to Dutch control from 1803 to 1806, when on January 10th it was once again occupied by British troops.

In 1814 Cape Town became the capital of the British Cape Colony.

From 1904 to 1961 Cape Town was the legislative capital of the Union of South Africa, and subsequently of the Republic of South Africa.


Cecil Rhodes' retirement home is in Muizenburg, Cape Town , Groote Schuur, was the South African Prime Minister's official residence from 1910 to 1984.

Christiaan Barnard performed the first successful human heart transplant at Groote Schuur Hospital, Cape Town in 1967.

Cape Town's population in 2005 was 3,103,000. It is the second-most populated city in South Africa, after Johannesburg.


Table Mountain, Cape Town's iconic landmark is referred to as Hoerikwaggo meaning "Mountain of the Sea" by the Khoikhoi.

Table Mountain is the only mountain in the world to have a constellation (“Mensa”) named after it.

Source Hutchinson Encyclopedia © RM 2013. Helicon Publishing is division of RM.

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