Trek

Trek

Trek, Great, the journey by Afrikaner farmers (Boers) who left the Cape Colony to escape British domination and eventually founded Natal, Transvaal, and the Orange Free State. Trek is an Afrikaans term, originally meaning a journey by ox wagon. In this most famous trek, 12,000 Boers left the Cape between 1835 and 1843. The Voortrekkers (as these Boers are known) migrated beyond the Orange River. After defeating resident Africans, most remained in the highveld of the interior, forming isolated communities and small states.

See E. Walker, The Great Trek (5th ed. 1965).

Emigration of some 12,000–14,000 Boers (see Afrikaners) from Cape Colony (South Africa) between 1835 and the early 1840s, in rebellion against British policies and in search of fresh pasturelands. The trek, regarded by Afrikaners as the origin of their nationhood, enabled the settlers to establish temporary military supremacy over the Xhosa, to penetrate into Natal and the Highveld, and to expand white settlement north to the Limpopo River. Seealso Andries Pretorius.

Learn more about Great Trek with a free trial on Britannica.com.

The word trek has entered the English language as one of few words derived from Afrikaans. It means a long, hard journey, and is derived from the Middle Dutch trecken (meaning to pull or haul).

Trek may also refer to:

Search another word or see trekon Dictionary | Thesaurus |Spanish
Copyright © 2014 Dictionary.com, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature