Mandalay (/ˌmændəˈleɪ/ or /ˈmændəleɪ/; Burmese: မန္တလေး; MLCTS: manta.le:[màɴdəlé]) is the second-largest city and the last royal capital of Burma. Located 716km (445mi) north of Yangon on the east bank of the Irrawaddy River, the city has a population of 1,225,553 (2014 census).
Mandalay is the economic hub of Upper Burma and considered the centre of Burmese culture. A continuing influx of Chinese immigrants, mostly from Yunnan, in the past twenty years, has reshaped the city's ethnic makeup and increased commerce with China. Despite Naypyidaw's recent rise, Mandalay remains Upper Burma's main commercial, educational and health center.
The city gets its name from the nearby Mandalay Hill. The name is probably a derivative of a Pali word, although the exact word of origin remains unclear. The root word has been speculated to be mandala, referring to circular plains or Mandara, a mountain from Hindu mythology.
When it was founded in 1857, the royal city was officially named Yadanabon (ရတနာပုံ, [jədənàbòʊɴ]), a loan of the Pali name Ratanapūra (ရတနပူရ) "City of Gems." It was also called Lay Kyun Aung Myei (လေးကျွန်းအောင်မြေ, [lé dʑʊ́ɴ àʊɴ mjè], "Victorious Land over the Four Islands") and Mandalay Palace (မြနန်းစံကျော်, [mja̰ náɴ sàɴ tɕɔ̀], "Famed Royal Emerald Palace").
Secret Messages is the eleventh studio album by Electric Light Orchestra (ELO), released in 1983 through Jet Records. It was the last ELO album with bass guitarist Kelly Groucutt, conductor Louis Clark, and real stringed instruments, and the last ELO album to be released on Jet Records. It was also the final ELO studio album to become a worldwide top 40 hit upon release.
The record was originally planned to be a double album, but was thwarted by Jet's distributor, CBS Records, claiming that producing a double vinyl album would be too expensive, and as a result, leader Jeff Lynne had to reduce it to a single album. This version of the album was digitally recorded and was to have been ELO's first compact disc. Six of the songs from the intended double album appeared as B-sides and reappeared on the Afterglow box set in 1990, including a string-laden eight-minute long tribute to the band's home town (Birmingham) entitled "Hello My Old Friend". Some of the tracks reappeared on the 2001 re-issue of the album. "Endless Lies", which had been altered for its inclusion on the subsequently-released Balance of Power album, appears in its original 1983 form on the 2001 remaster of this album.
"Mandalay" is a poem by Rudyard Kipling that was first published in the collection Barrack-Room Ballads, and Other Verses, the first series, published in 1892. The poem colourfully illustrates the nostalgia and longing of a soldier of the British Empire for Asia's exoticism, and generally for the countries and cultures located "East of Suez", as compared to the cold, damp and foggy climates and to the social disciplines and conventions of the UK and Northern Europe.
The British troops stationed in Burma were taken up (or down) the Irrawaddy River by paddle steamers run by the Irrawaddy Flotilla Company (IFC). Rangoon to Mandalay was a 700km trip each way. During the Third Anglo-Burmese War of 1885 9,000 British and Indian soldiers had been transported by a fleet of paddle steamers ("the old flotilla" of the poem) and other boats from Rangoon to Mandalay. Guerrilla warfare followed the occupation of Mandalay and British regiments remained in Burma for several years.
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