Hanoi has been inhabited since at
least 3000 BC. One of the first known permanent settlements is the Co Loa
citadel founded around 200 BC.
has had many names throungout history, all of them of Sino – Vietnamese origin.
During the Chinese domination of Vietnam , it was known as Tong Binh and later
Long Do (literally “dragon’s belly” ). In 866, it was turned into a citadel and
was named Dai La.
1010, Ly Thai To – the first ruler of the Ly dynasty, moved the capital of Dai
Viet (The Great Viet), then the name of Vietnam, to the site of the Dai La
citadel. Claiming to have seen a dragon ascending the Red River , he rename it
Thang Long (ascending dragon) – a name still used poetically to this day. It remained
the capital of Vietnam until 1397 when the capital was moved to Thanh Hoa, also
known as Tay Do. Thang long then becam Dong Do.
In 1408, Vietnam was invaded by
Chinese troops from the Ming dynasty and Dong Do was renamed Dong Quan by the
Chinese. In 1428, Viet nam was liberated from Chinese ruler by Le Loi, the
founder of the Le dynasty and Dong Quan was renamed Dong Kinh. During the Tay
Son dynasty, it was named Bac Thanh.
1802, when the Nguyen dynasty was established and then moved the capital down
to present day Hue , it was renamed Thang Long. In 1831, the Nguyen dynasty
renamed it Hanoi (can be translated to between River or river Interior). Hanoi
was occupied by the French in 1873 and passed to them ten years later.
city was occupied by the Japanese in 1940, and liberated in 1945, when it
briefly became the seat of the Viet minh government after Ho Chi Minh
proclaimed the independence of Vietnam . But the French came back and
reoccupied the city in 1946. After 9 years of fighting between the French and
Viet minh forces. Hanoi became the capital of an independent North Vietnam in
During the Vietnam war Hanoi ’s transportation facilities were disrupted by the
bombing of bridges and railways. Which were however promptly repaired.
Following the end of the war hanoi becam the capital of Vietnam when north and
south Vietnam were reunited on July 2,1976.