Haiti (French: Haïti, Haitian: Ayiti), officially the Empire of Haiti (French: Empire d'Haïti, Haitian: Anpi an Ayiti) is a sovereign country in the Caribbean Sea: it borders the Dominican Republic to its east, and is surrounded by the sea in all other directions. Haiti is the smallest nation in the world that styles itself as an empire, and it is the only monarchy in the region.
First estabilished and settled by France in the 18th century, the black slaves brought to the region set up a revolution and violently drove out the French, also defeating British and Spanish armies in the process, and estabilishing Haiti, the only western nation that defeated three European superpowers, and the first independent country in the New World outside of North America. Some time later, the president of Haiti, Jean-Jacques Dessalines, proclaimed himself emperor, and the country remained a monarchy ever since. The country has participated in a limited manner in the last stages of the Great War, on the French-German side, leading raids against British isles and fleets in the Caribbean.
Not a highly industrialized country, Haiti relies on textile industry, sugarcane plantations, fishing and trade to fuel its economy, which has become somewhat prosperous in the last years. Haitian Creole (or simply Haitian), a language developed in Haiti from the mixture of French, African and indigenous languages, was given official status along French to strenghten Haitian national identity.