it has been settled for less than 400 years, Mauritius was probably visited by the Arabs before the 10th century, the Malays in the 1400s, and the Portuguese in the early 1500s.
It was occupied in 1598 by the Dutch, who named it for Maurice of Nassau, then stadtholder of the Netherlands. The Dutch left in 1710, and in 1715 the French took possession, renaming it ile de France.
It was captured by the British in 1810 during the Napoleonic Wars and was formally ceded to Britain in 1814. To offset the labor problem arising from abolition of slavery in the British Empire, the planters were allowed to import indentured laborers from India, and since 1861 the population has been mainly Indian.