Much the larger of the two islands is Trinidad, with Tobago to the north-east. Trinidad, inhabited by Arawaks, was visited by Columbus in 1498 and settled by the Spanish; Tobago, occupied by Caribs, was colonized by the French and later the British in the 18th century. Trinidad became British during the Napoleonic Wars and was formally amalgamated with Tobago as a Crown Colony in 1888. Trinidad and Tobago became an independent member state of the Commonwealth in 1962 and finally a republic in 1976
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