- 1a major river in central Africa that rises as the Lualaba River south of Kisangani in northern Democratic Republic of Congo (formerly Zaire). It flows for 2,880 miles (4,630 km) in a great curve to the west and then turns southwest to form the border between the Congo and the Democratic Republic of the Congo before emptying into the Atlantic Ocean. Also called Zaire River.
- 2an equatorial country in Africa, with a short Atlantic coastline; population 4,012,800 (est. 2009); languages, French (official), Kikongo, and other Bantu languages; capital, Brazzaville. Also called Republic of Congo, Congo-Brazzaville.
The region was colonized in the 19th century by France, and as Middle Congo formed part of the larger territory of French Congo (later, French Equatorial Africa). The country became independent in 1960