Burma is almost exactly the same size as Texas.
But while Texas has a population of less than 15 million, Burma is home to more than 33 million, making it the twenty-fifty most populated country on earth.
Burma is in Southeast Asia. It shares borders with China, Laos, Thailand, India, and Bangladesh. The northern part of the country is mountainous, and most Burmese live in the lush, fertile river valleys in the center of the country.
Around the 9th century, the people who now inhabit Burma moved into the land from more northerly regions. They settled mostly along the Irrawaddy River, the nation’s most important waterway.
Buddhism came to Burma in the 11th century, when Burmese rulers established a great kingdom centered at the city of Pagan. Burma is still mostly Buddhist.
In the 13th century, Kublai Khan, the Mongol ruler of China, sent envoys to Pagan to ask for homage from the Burmese. The Burmese slew the envoys when they refused to kneel barefoot before the Burmese king, so Kublai Khan invaded Burma and began a period of Mongol rule.
Burma soon became independent, but Britain gradually took control of’ the land during the nineteenth century. The British made Burma part of Britain’s Indian Empire. In 1948, the country once again gained its independence.
Burma was the world’s largest rice exporter until 1946. Burma produces more rice today than it did before World War II. but more of it is consumed by the country’s growing population. Today, Burma is the world’s ninth leading producer of rice.