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Nairobi(nīrō`bē), city (1996 pop. 3,000,000), capital of Kenya, S Kenya, in the E African highlands. Nairobi is Kenya's largest city and its administrative, communications, and economic center. It is the trade and distribution center for a productive agricultural area specializing in coffee, tea, and cattle. The city has a large industrial complex which manufactures automobiles, food products, beverages, construction materials, cigarettes, chemicals, textiles, clothing, glass, and furniture. The city is linked by road with the rest of Kenya and by railroad with MombasaMombasa
, city (1990 est. pop. 537,000), capital of Coast prov., SE Kenya, mostly on Mombasa island in the Indian Ocean and partly on the mainland (with which it is connected by a causeway). It is Kenya's chief port and an important commercial and industrial center.
..... Click the link for more information. (on the Indian Ocean coast), W Kenya, and Uganda. Although Nairobi is only 90 mi (145 km) south of the equator, it has a moderate climate, largely because of its high altitude (c.5,500 ft/1,680 m). Many tourists are attracted to Nairobi National Park, a large wildlife sanctuary on the city's outskirts, and to nearby scenic areas. Nairobi was founded in 1899 on the site of a waterhole of the pastoral MasaiMasai
, a largely nomadic pastoral people of E Africa, chiefly in Kenya and Tanzania. Cattle and sheep form the basis of the economy that they have maintained in resistance to cultural change. The Masai live off the milk, blood, and meat of their livestock.
..... Click the link for more information. as a railhead camp on the Mombasa-Uganda line. In 1905 it replaced Mombasa as the capital of the British East Africa Protectorate (Kenya Colony, 1920–63). Nairobi became the center of the prosperous European-dominated highlands farming area. In the 1950s the Mau MauMau Mau
, secret insurgent organization in Kenya, comprising mainly Kikuyu tribespeople. They were bound by oath to force the expulsion of white settlers from Kenya. In 1952 the Mau Mau began reprisals against the Europeans, especially in the "white highlands," claimed as Kikuyu
..... Click the link for more information. insurgency flared among KikuyuKikuyu
, Bantu-speaking people, numbering about 6 million, forming the largest tribal group in Kenya. The Kikuyu live in the highlands NE of Nairobi. Before the British conquest they were the most influential people in the country.
..... Click the link for more information. people near Nairobi; there were related disturbances in the city. Nairobi Univ., Kenyatta Univ., and several medical and technical schools are in Nairobi. The National Museum of Kenya, which has extensive collections of Kenya's prehistory and natural history, and the Sorsbie art gallery are in Nairobi. Many international organizations have their African headquarters in the area, including the United Nations Environmental Program.
the capital of Kenya. Situated on a plateau at an elevation of 1,700 m, Nairobi has an equatorial monsoon climate with an average July temperature of 15°C and an average March temperature of 18.7” C. The annual precipitation is 932 mm. In 1973 the city had a population of about 550,000, including suburbs, up from 267,000 in 1962. The municipal area forms a capital district with the status of a province. The city is administered by an elected council, some of whose members are appointed by the Nairobi commissioner. Founded in 1899 during the construction of the Mombasa-Kisumu railroad, the city later became the administrative center of the British colony of Kenya. From the 1920’s to the 1940’s the British colonialists used the British military base in Nairobi for the suppression of the national liberation movement in East Africa. Nairobi was one of the centers of the struggle of Kenya’s peoples against British rule. On Dec. 12, 1963, it became the capital of independent Kenya, called the Republic of Kenya since Dec. 12, 1964.
Nairobi is the center of a network of railroads and highways, and the Embakasi international airport is located 16 km southeast of the city. The main commercial and industrial center of Kenya, Nairobi has food, leather and footwear, textile, metal-working, and cement industries. Electric power is obtained from the Owens Falls hydroelectric power plant in Uganda. The Nairobi National Park is located 5 km from the city.
Since 1920 the city has been built up according to a rectangular pattern with European buildings. Architectural landmarks built since the 1950’s include the Parliament Building (1950’s), the National Theater (opened in 1952) with the adjoining Cultural Center (opened in 1960), the National University (1956), the Kenyatta Conference Center (early 1970’s), the Aga Khan Hospital, and the New Stanley and Nairobi Hilton hotels. In the eastern part of the city is the Pumwani slum district. The McMillan Memorial Library and National Museum are located in the city. A British theater, directed by D. Maule, was founded in 1948, and amateur groups give performances at the National Theater. A Drama School was established in 1968, and in 1970 the National Theater Company was formed from among its graduates.
REFERENCESmart, J. A Jubilee History of Nairobi. Nairobi, 1950.
a national park, in Kenya, 5 km from the city of Nairobi. Area, 11,400 hectares. Established in 1946. There is savanna vegetation, with a predominance of thickets of prickly shrubs and several species of the acacia. The park is inhabited by lions, leopards, buffalo, zebras, antelopes (impala, common eland, gnu, Thompson’s and Grant’s gazelles, and common waterbuck), and giraffes; the black rhinoceros is rare. Birds include the ostrich, gom-paauw, and secretary bird.