A republic formerly named Rhodesia. In May 1979, it was officially renamed Zimbabwe Rhodesia, a combination of the African and European names of the country. The country became simply Zimbabwe in 1980.
Rhodesia was a former British administrative unit in southeastern Africa. The area was under the British South Africa Co. until 1924, when Rhodesia was divided into Northern Rhodesia and Southern Rhodesia, under direct British rule. During 1953-63, these two colonies were united with the Nyasaland Protectorate to form the Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland. With the dissolution of the federation, the three colonies were again separated. Northern Rhodesia became independent as Zambia in 1964, and in 1965, Southern Rhodesia assumed the name Rhodesia and declared its independence from Great Britain. Rhodesia became Zimbabwe on Dec. 31, 1978.
A former British colony in southeastern Africa. Administered as part of Rhodesia until 1923, Southern Rhodesia was ruled as a separate colony from 1923 to 1953. The territory was part of the Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland from 1953 to 1964, and again became a separate colony from 1964 to 1965. In 1965, the controlling white minority declared Southern Rhodesia independent of Great Britain.