One of the indian ocean islands, east of madagascar. Its capital is Port Louis. It was discovered by the Portuguese in 1505, occupied by the Dutch 1598-1710, held by the French 1715-1810 when the British captured it, formally ceded to the British in 1814, and became independent in 1968. It was named by the Dutch in honor of Maurice of Nassau, Prince of Orange (1567-1625). (From Webster's New Geographical dictionary, 1988, p742 & Room, Brewer's dictionary of names, 1992, p341)


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