One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A country in West Africa with a coastline on the Atlantic Ocean; population 4,100,000 (estimated 2015); languages, Arabic (official), Wolof (official), French; capital, Nouakchott.
Mauritania was a centre of Berber power in the 11th and 12th centuries, at which time Islam became established in the region. Later, nomadic Arab tribes became dominant, while on the coast European nations, especially France, established trading posts. A French protectorate from 1902 and a colony from 1920, Mauritania achieved full independence in 1961
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