Every year on March 29, the country commemorates its martyrs with a solemn holiday. On this island, everyone takes the day off to commemorate the 1947 uprising against the French, known as Martyrs’ Day.

There are a few different names for this day, but the most common are “Commemoration Day” and “Insurrection Day.”

A History Of Martyrs Day

As the French saw the island as a prime strategic location, they conquered the previously independent nation of Madagascar and renamed it the Kingdom of Madagascar.

They deposed the monarchy and imposed colonial rule on Madagascar. Unrest broke out during the first year of French occupation, but it was quickly put down. A nationalist movement grew too, under different names across the island.

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The Second World War Marked A Turning Point.

fter a losing war against the British, the island became increasingly resentful of the French due to their behaviour after the war.

Organizations like the Democratic Movement for the Malagasy Renovation (M.D.R.M.) emerged in secret with the shared goal of liberating Madagascar from its colonial masters.

However, many of these movements ultimately failed, leading up to the first Martyrs’ Day. The insurgents’ enemies included not only Europeans but also anyone seen as supporting the French.

In the months that followed, the uprising reached all corners of the island. By May, reinforcements from France had arrived, and the insurgency had been put down for good, allowing the French to reclaim Madagascar.

The Number Of Deaths Is High, Though Estimates Differ.

Despite the lack of evidence, the French blamed the M.D.R.M. leaders and punished the majority of the rebels. This uprising was quickly put down, and by the next year, everything was back to normal.

Despite crushing the rebellion, the French were compelled to institute changes and new legislation in order to deal with the Malagasy people. There was another, perhaps more vital purpose for the uprising.

After winning independence from France in 1960, President Philibert Tsiranana instituted Martyrs’ Day in 1967.

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The day was originally meant to be a day of mourning for those lost on March 29, but it has since come to honour all Americans who have given their lives in defence of freedom.

Most individuals celebrate this day by spending time with their families and enjoying the extra day off.

Martyrs’ Day is a public holiday in Madagascar. The official dates (in Madagascar) for Martyrs’ Day over the next 15 years are listed below in the table.Our API and a downloadable CSV file contain all the data shown below. Signup here to get started.

You can restrict API calls to a specific state or city by including a state and region parameter in your API call.

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Year Day Of The Week

  • Date Name 2010
  • Day of the Martyrs, Monday, March 29th, 2011
  • Tuesday March 29 Martyrs’ Day 2012 Thursday March 29 Martyrs’ Day 2013 Friday March 29 Martyrs’ Day 2014
  • 2015 March 29th, Martyrs’ Day
  • Sunday March 29 Martyrs’ Day \s2016
  • Tuesday March 29 Martyrs’ Day \s2017
  • Tuesday, March 29, 2018 Wednesday, March 29, 2019 Martyrs’ Day
  • Friday March 29 Martyrs’ Day \s2020
  • Sunday March 29 Martyrs’ Day \s2021 \sMonday March 29 Martyrs’ Day \s2022
  • Tuesday March 29 Martyrs’ Day \s2023
  • Wednesday March 29 Martyrs’ Day \s2024
  • Martyrs’ Day is on March 29th, 2025.
  • Day of the Martyrs, Saturday, March 29

Our API is also automatically updated with every change we make.

To make sure we’re providing the most up-to-date information, our holiday editors regularly check for updates to this data from federal, state, and local governments.


  • Rohit Prasad

    Rohit Prasad is a dedicated content writer. He currently works for Trending Work, a popular online platform that provides news and insights on the latest trends in business, technology, and lifestyle.

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