The Argentine Northwest is a geographic and historical region of Argentina composed of the provinces of Catamarca, Jujuy, La Rioja, Santiago del Estero and Tucumán. The Argentine Northwest comprises distinct biomes, or geographical and climatic regions. From west to east they are: The Altiplano or "Puna" High Mountains of the Andes Fertile valleys Red-rock canyons and mountain passes Humid Sub-Andean Sierras Tropical jungles or Yungas And the ecotone—or transitional zone—between the Yungas and the Chaco region. Besides the Yungas jungle on the eastern fringe of the region, the only fertile lands are those near the river basins, which have been irrigated extensively. Across millennia the erosive forces of these rivers has created a multitude of red-rock canyons, such as the Quebrada de Humahuaca and the Valles Calchaquíes. West of these valleys the peaks of the Andes reach heights of over 6,000 metres and the Altiplano, an extensive 3,500-meter high plateau, dominates the landscape and continues far north into Bolivia and Southern Peru.
Northwest Argentina is classified as subtropical. Owing to its rugged topography, the region is climatically diverse, depending on the altitude and distribution of precipitation. Consequentially, the vegetation will differ at these different climate types. In general, the climate can be divided into 2 main types: a cold arid or semi-arid climate at the higher altitudes and warmer subtropical climate in the eastern parts of the region. Under the Köppen climate classification, the region has 5 different climate types which are semi–arid, temperate climate without a dry season and with a dry season and an alpine climate at the highest altitudes; the atmospheric circulation is controlled by the two semi–permanent South Atlantic and South Pacific highs, a seasonal low pressure system east of the Andes. During summer, the interaction between the South Atlantic high and the Chaco low causes the low pressure system to bring northeasterly and easterly winds that carry moisture to the region in the northern parts.
The movement of moist air into the region during the summer results in high precipitation. Most of the moisture comes from the east since the Andes block any moisture from the Pacific Ocean. Cold fronts that travel northwards to the region can produce precipitation during the summer months and is more prominent in the southern parts of the region. For example, in Tucuman Province, these cold fronts are responsible for 70% of the rainfall in that province. In contrast, during the winter months, the Chaco low attracts air masses from the South Pacific high, creating a dry and cold wind; this effect is more prominent in the winter months. The Intertropical convergence zone reaches the region during the summer months, leading to low pressure, unstable air masses due to the high land temperatures compared to the sea during this season; this leads to enhanced precipitation in the form of convective thunderstorms during the summer months. During the winter months, the intertropical convergence zone moves northwards to Ecuador while both the South Pacific and South Atlantic high move northwards, the Chaco low weakens, all of which result in the suppression of rain during the winter.
With the predominant wind being from the west and the Andes blocking most rain bearing clouds from the Pacific Ocean along with atmospheric circulation patterns unfavourable for rain, this results in a dry season during winter. At the highest altitudes, westerly winds from the Pacific Ocean can penetrate during the winter months, leading to snowstorms. Precipitation in the region is seasonal and is concentrated in the summer months in which precipitation decreases from east to west. Precipitation is distributed irregularly owing to relief; as moist air reaches the eastern slopes of the mountains, this moist air raises up vertically, cooling adiabatically, leading to formation of clouds which generate copious amounts of rain. Eastern slopes of the mountains can receive between 1,000 to 1,500 mm of precipitation a year although some places can receive 2,500 mm of precipitation per year owing to orographic precipitation. In the south, the orographic effect is enhanced by advancing cold fronts from the south, resulting in enhanced precipitation.
The high rainfall on these first slopes creates a thick jungle that extends in a narrow strip along these ranges. Beyond the first slopes of the Andes into the valleys, the air descends vertically, warming adiabatically, creating air, drier and warmer than on the eastern slopes. Since the mountain ranges are oriented in a north–south direction, increase in altitude to the west, have a discontinuous orography, this allows valleys to have regions of high precipitation in the west and drier regions in eastern parts of the valleys through orographic precipitation. In the temperate valleys, which include major cities such as Salta and Jujuy, they have average precipitation ranging between 500 to 1,000 mm. For example, in the Lerma Valley, surrounded by tall mountains, precipitation ranges from 695 mm in Salta to 1,395 mm in San Lorenzo, just 11 km away. Rainfall in the Lerma valley in Salta and in wetter valleys in Jujuy province, including its provincial capital is concentrated in the summer months and falls in short but heavy bursts.
Valleys in the southern parts of the region are more drier than northern valleys due to the mountains on the eastern slopes from both the Andes and the Sierras Pampeanas being taller tha
Suppression of the Society of Jesus
The suppression of the Jesuits in the Portuguese Empire, the Two Sicilies, Parma, the Spanish Empire and Austria and Hungary is a complex topic. Analysis of the reasons is complicated by the political maneuvering in each country, not carried on in the open but has left some trail of evidence; the papacy reluctantly went along with the demands of the various Catholic kingdoms involved, advanced no theological reason for the suppression. The power and wealth of the Society of Jesus with its influential educational system was confronted by adversaries in this time of cultural change in Europe, leading to the revolutions that would follow. Monarchies attempting to centralize and secularize political power viewed the Jesuits as being too international, too allied to the papacy, too autonomous from the monarchs in whose territory they operated. By the brief Dominus ac Redemptor Pope Clement XIV suppressed the Society of Jesus, as a fait accompli and with no reasons given. Russia and the United States allowed the Jesuits to continue their work, Catherine the Great allowed the founding of a new novitiate in Russia.
Soon after their restoration by Pope Pius VII in 1814, the Jesuits began returning to most of the places from which they had been expelled. Prior to the eighteenth-century suppression of the Jesuits in many countries, there was an early ban in territories of the Venetian Republic between 1606 and 1656/7, begun and ended as part of disputes between the Republic and the Papacy, beginning with the Venetian Interdict. By the mid-18th century, the Society had acquired a reputation in Europe for political maneuvering and economic success. Monarchs in many European states grew progressively wary of what they saw as undue interference from a foreign entity; the expulsion of Jesuits from their states had the added benefit of allowing governments to impound the Society's accumulated wealth and possessions. However, historian Charles Gibson cautions, "ow far this served as a motive for the expulsion we do not know."Various states took advantage of different events in order to take action. The series of political struggles between various monarchs France and Portugal, began with disputes over territory in 1750 and culminated in suspension of diplomatic relations and dissolution of the Society by the Pope over most of Europe, some executions.
The Portuguese Empire, the Two Sicilies and the Spanish Empire were involved to one degree or another. The conflicts began with trade disputes, in 1750 in Portugal, in 1755 in France, in the late 1750s in the Two Sicilies. In 1758 the government of Joseph I of Portugal took advantage of the waning powers of Pope Benedict XIV and deported Jesuits from South America after relocating the Jesuits and their native workers, fighting a brief conflict, formally suppressing the order in 1759. In 1762 the Parlement Français, ruled against the Society in a huge bankruptcy case under pressure from a host of groups – from within the Church but secular notables and the king's mistress. Austria and the Two Sicilies suppressed the order by decree in 1767. There were long-standing tensions between the Portuguese crown and the Jesuits, which increased when the Count of Oeiras became the monarch's minister of state, culminating in the expulsion of the Jesuits in 1759; the Távora affair in 1758 could be considered a pretext for the expulsion and crown confiscation of Jesuit assets.
According to historians James Lockhart and Stuart B. Schwartz, the Jesuits' "independence, wealth, control of education, ties to Rome made the Jesuits obvious targets for Pombal's brand of extreme regalism."Portugal's quarrel with the Jesuits began over an exchange of South American colonial territory with Spain. By a secret treaty of 1750, Portugal relinquished to Spain the contested Colonia del Sacramento at the mouth of the Rio de la Plata in exchange for the Seven Reductions of Paraguay, the autonomous Jesuit missions, nominal Spanish colonial territory; the native Guaraní, who lived in the mission territories, were ordered to quit their country and settle across the Uruguay. Owing to the harsh conditions, the Guaraní rose in arms against the transfer, the so-called Guaraní War ensued, it was a disaster for the Guaraní. In Portugal a battle escalated with inflammatory pamphlets denouncing or defending the Jesuits who for over a century had protected the Guarani from enslavement through a network of Reductions, as depicted in The Mission.
The Portuguese colonizers secured the expulsion of the Jesuits. On 1 April 1758, Pombal persuaded the aged Pope Benedict XIV to appoint the Portuguese Cardinal Saldanha to investigate allegations against the Jesuits. Benedict was skeptical as to the gravity of the alleged abuses, he ordered a "minute inquiry", but so as to safeguard the reputation of the Society, all serious matters were to be referred back to him. Benedict died the following month on May 3. On May 15 Saldanha, having received the papal brief only a fortnight before, declared that the Jesuits were guilty of having exercised "illicit and scandalous commerce," both in Portugal and in its colonies, he had not visited Jesuit houses as ordered, pronounced on the issues which the pope had reserved to himself. Pombal implicated the Jesuits in the Távora affair, an attempted assassination of the king on 3 September 1758, on the grounds of their friendship with some of the supposed conspirators. On 19 January 1759, he issued a decree sequestering the property of the Society in the Portuguese dominions and the following September deported the Portuguese fathers, about one thousand in number, to the Pontifical States, keeping the foreigners in prison.
Córdoba Province, Argentina
Córdoba is a province of Argentina, located in the center of the country. Neighboring provinces are: Santiago del Estero, Santa Fe, Buenos Aires, La Pampa, San Luis, La Rioja and Catamarca. Together with Santa Fe and Entre Ríos, the province is part of the economic and political association known as the Center Region. Córdoba is the second most populous Argentine province, with 3,308,876 inhabitants, the fifth by size, at about 165,321 km2. 41% of its inhabitants reside in the capital city, Córdoba, its surroundings, making it the second most populous metro area in Argentina. Before the Spanish conquista the region now called Córdoba Province was inhabited by indigenous groups, most notably the Comechingones and Sanavirones. Once settled in Alto Perú, the Spaniards searched for a route to the Río de la Plata port in the Atlantic Ocean to transport the Peruvian gold and silver to Europe. Córdoba de la Nueva Andalucía was founded as a middle point on that route on July 6, 1573 by Jerónimo Luis de Cabrera.
The Colegio Convictorio de Nuestra Señora de Monserrat was founded by the Jesuits in 1599, followed by the National University of Córdoba, Argentina's first university, in 1613. The city continued to grow as an important cultural center, supported by the trade of precious metals from Peru. In 1761 a printing press was installed in the University. In 1783, seven years after the consolidation of the Viceroyalty of the Río de la Plata, the Intendency of Córdoba became the capital of what now includes the La Rioja, San Juan and San Luis Province, dividing the former Tucumán Intendency in two. Rafael de Sobremonte was its first governor. After the May Revolution in 1810, Governor Juan Gutiérrez de la Concha joined a meeting that decided to ignore the authority of the Buenos Aires Junta. Francisco Ortiz de Ocampo attacked the city and executed the leaders of the opposition, among whom was Santiago de Liniers, leader of the resistance during the British invasions of the Río de la Plata. Led by Juan Bautista Bustos after 1820, Córdoba struggled for control of the Nation with Buenos Aires.
Córdoba sought a federal organization of the provinces while Rivadavia pushed for a centralised government in Buenos Aires. For 15 years the province was submerged in internal revolts that started to stabilize in 1868 under the provisional government of Félix de la Peña. During the presidency of Sarmiento an astronomic observatory and the Faculty of Physical Sciences and Mathematics were inaugurated; the creation of the railways and the consequent immigration brought a second wave of population growth to Córdoba. From 1887 on, several agricultural colonies emerged, while former rest-point Fraile Muerto and Los Luceros, on the route to Buenos Aires, became agricultural and industrial centers, respectively; the University Reform movement, which originated in Córdoba in 1918, was influential not only in Argentina but throughout South America. Modernization of the curricular contents and the improvement of the students' rights were the main achievements of the movement and in Córdoba, were enacted by Governor Amadeo Sabattini, who became Argentina's most progressive governor at the time and enacted civil and land reforms that would set the national standard.
After World War II, many foreign workers and workers from other provinces in Argentina were seduced by Córdoba's industrial development, led by the expansion of the car industry. It was during Arturo Frondizi's presidency that most new auto industries settled in the city of Córdoba and its surroundings; as in the rest of the country, Peronist groups emerged in 1955 following the coup that removed Juan Perón from office. These Peronist groups, together with other socialist and anarchist groups, began opposing Argentina's third military dictatorship that began in 1966. Worker and student participation in politics grew due to the widespread discontent with the appointed governor's hard-line stance, culminating in the violent May, 1969, popular revolt known as the Cordobazo; this revolt, mirrored by the Rosariazo and others in several parts of the country, undermined the power of dictator Juan Carlos Onganía and led to his ouster by more moderate military factions. Córdoba has continued to prosper, despite left-wing violence in 1973, right-wing political interference in 1974, government atrocities in 1976–77, 1978–81 free trade policies that battered Córdoba's sizable industrial sector, the 1980s debt crisis and, the recent acute financial crisis that ended in 2002.
Córdoba, located just north of the geographical center of the nation, is Argentina's fifth largest province. The main feature of the province is the presence of an extensive plain covering the eastern two thirds of the province, the existence of three major mountain ranges which, are known as Sierras de Córdoba: the easternmost range starts just west of the city of Córdoba and reaches altitudes of around 1,000 meters in the southern portion, over 1,500 meters further north, with a maximum altitude of 1,950 meters at Cerro Uritorco. West of this chain, two valleys contain most of the tourist spots in the province: the Calamuchita valley in the south, the Punilla Valley in the north, home of scenic towns such as Villa Carlos Paz, Cosquín, La Cumbre and La Falda. West of these valleys, the Sierras Grandes form the highest chain in the province: their altitude increases to form a plateau of 2,000 to 2,300 meters
A missionary is a member of a religious group sent into an area to proselytize or perform ministries of service, such as education, social justice, health care, economic development. The word "mission" originates from 1598 when the Jesuits sent members abroad, derived from the Latin missionem, meaning "act of sending" or mittere, meaning "to send"; the word was used in light of its biblical usage. The term is most used for Christian missions, but can be used for any creed or ideology. A Christian missionary can be defined as "one, to witness across cultures"; the Lausanne Congress of 1974, defined the term, related to Christian mission as, "to form a viable indigenous church-planting movement". Missionaries can be found in many countries around the world. In the Bible, Jesus is recorded as instructing the apostles to make disciples of all nations; this verse is referred to by Christian missionaries as the Great Commission and inspires missionary work. The Christian Church expanded throughout the Roman Empire in New Testament times and is said by tradition to have reached further, to Persia and to India.
During the Middle Ages, the Christian monasteries and missionaries such as Saint Patrick, Adalbert of Prague propagated learning and religion beyond the European boundaries of the old Roman Empire. In 596, Pope Gregory the Great sent the Gregorian Mission into England. In their turn, Christians from Ireland and from Britain became prominent in converting the inhabitants of central Europe. During the Age of Discovery, the Catholic Church established a number of missions in the Americas and in other Western colonies through the Augustinians and Dominicans to spread Christianity in the New World and to convert the Native Americans and other indigenous people. About the same time, missionaries such as Francis Xavier as well as other Jesuits, Augustinians and Dominicans reached Asia and the Far East, the Portuguese sent missions into Africa. Emblematic in many respects is Matteo Ricci's Jesuit mission to China from 1582, peaceful and non-violent; these missionary movements should be distinguished from others, such as the Baltic Crusades of the 12th and 13th centuries, which were arguably compromised in their motivation by designs of military conquest.
Much contemporary Catholic missionary work has undergone profound change since the Second Vatican Council of 1962-1965, with an increased push for indigenization and inculturation, along with social justice issues as a constitutive part of preaching the Gospel. As the Catholic Church organizes itself along territorial lines and had the human and material resources, religious orders, some specializing in it, undertook most missionary work in the era after the collapse of the Roman Empire in the West. Over time, the Holy See established a normalized Church structure in the mission areas starting with special jurisdictions known as apostolic prefectures and apostolic vicariates. At a stage of development these foundations are raised to regular diocesan status with a local bishops appointed. On a global front, these processes were accelerated in the 1960s, in part accompanying political decolonization. In some regions, they are still in course. Just as the Bishop of Rome had jurisdiction in territories considered to be in the Eastern sphere, so the missionary efforts of the two 9th-century saints Cyril and Methodius were conducted in relation to the West rather than the East, though the field of activity was central Europe.
The Eastern Orthodox Church, under the Orthodox Church of Constantinople undertook vigorous missionary work under the Roman Empire and its successor the Byzantine Empire. This had lasting effects and in some sense is at the origin of the present relations of Constantinople with some sixteen Orthodox national churches including the Romanian Orthodox Church, the Georgian Orthodox and Apostolic Church, the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, the Bulgarian Orthodox Church; the Byzantines expanded their missionary work in Ukraine after the mass baptism in Kiev in 988. The Serbian Orthodox Church had its origins in the conversion by Byzantine missionaries of the Serb tribes when they arrived in the Balkans in the 7th century. Orthodox missionaries worked among the Estonians from the 10th to the 12th centuries, founding the Estonian Orthodox Church. Under the Russian Empire of the 19th century, missionaries such as Nicholas Ilminsky moved into the subject lands and propagated Orthodoxy, including through Belarus, Moldova, Estonia and China.
The Russian St. Nicholas of Japan took Eastern Orthodoxy to Japan in the 19th century; the Russian Orthodox Church sent missionaries to Alaska beginning in the 18th century, including Saint Herman of Alaska, to minister to the Native Americans. The Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia continued missionary work outside Russia after the 1917 Russian Revolution, resulting in the establishment of many new dioceses in the diaspora, from which numerous converts have been made in Eastern Europe, North America, Oceania. Early Protestant missionaries included John Eliot and contemporary ministers
Cuyo is the name given to the wine-producing, mountainous area of central-west Argentina. It comprised the provinces of San Juan, San Luis and Mendoza; the modern term New Cuyo indicates the province of La Rioja. New Cuyo is a political and economic macroregion, but culturally La Rioja is part of the North-West rather than of Cuyo. Cuyo has some of the most popular tourist attractions in Argentina and the highest mountain massifs in the Andes, including Aconcagua itself, the highest peak outside Asia, the Ischigualasto Provincial Park; the soil is reddish, crossed by few rivers. Most of the rivers are fed by the thawing of snow on the peaks, their volume of water increases in spring; the Desaguadero River is the main collector, receiving waters from the Bermejo and Salado before reaching the Colorado River. Viticulture is one of the main activities of the area; the wine production of the region represents 80% of national production, the wines are considered in the world. Olives, potatoes and some fruits are cultivated, there is production of sweets and preserved foodstuffs.
Quarrying and oil exploitation are other important industries. The cities and towns in the region are characterised by colonial low houses and churches, narrow streets, contrasting in the principal cities with the modern parts; the Universidad Nacional de Cuyo, founded in 1939, is the most important within these provinces, has its campus in Mendoza, but has faculties as far as Río Negro. This article includes a list of Cuyo Province sorted by their Gross Domestic Product per capita, the value of all final goods and services produced within a nation in a given year, divided by the average population for the same year; the table below includes data for the year 2013 for the 23 provinces Table of Cuyo provinces according to the 2001 census. The region of Cuyo has an arid climate or a semi-arid climate with an average annual precipitation of about 100 to 500 millimetres, unreliable from year to year; the region, which encompasses a wide range of latitudes combined with altitudes ranging from 500 m to nearly 7,000 m means that it has a diverse range of different climates.
In general, most of the region has a temperate climate with higher altitude valleys having a more milder climate. At the highest altitudes, icy conditions persist year round; the diurnal range is large with hot temperatures during the day followed by cold nights. Amongst all locations in Argentina, the region has the largest diurnal range in the country with areas in San Juan Province having a diurnal range exceeding 19.1 °C. The Andes prevent rain–bearing clouds from the Pacific Ocean from coming in, while its latitude puts it in a band of the sub-tropical high pressure belt keeping this region dry. With low humidity, abundant sunshine throughout the year, a temperate climate, the region is suitable for wine production. Droughts are frequent and prolonged; the Cuyo region is influenced by the subtropical, semi–permanent South Atlantic anticyclone to the east in the Atlantic, the semi-permanent South Pacific anticyclone to the west of the Andes, the development of a low pressure system over northern Argentina and westerlies in the southern parts of the region.
Most of the precipitation falls during the summer, when hot temperatures and high insolation lead to the development of a low pressure system situated over northern Argentina that interacts with the South Atlantic anticyclone to generate a pressure gradient that brings moist easterly winds to the region, favouring precipitation, which occurs in the form of convective thunderstorms. More than 85 % of the annual rainfall occurs from October to March. In contrast, the winter months are dry due to these systems weakening, the lower insolation that weakens the Chaco low over northern Argentina. Eastern and southeastern areas of the region receive more precipitation than the western areas since they receive more summer rainfall; as such, most of Mendoza province and San Juan province receive the lowest annual precipitation with mean summer precipitation averaging less than 100 mm and in rare cases, no summer rainfall. Further eastwards in San Luis province, mean summer rainfall averages around 500 mm and can exceed 700 mm in some areas.
Higher altitude locations receive precipitation in the form of snow during the winter months. In the Cuyo region, annual precipitation is variable from year to year and appears to follow a cycle between dry and wet years in periods of about 2, 4–5, 6–8, 16–22 years. In wet years, easterly winds caused by the subtropical South Atlantic anticyclone are stronger, which causes more moisture towards this region while during the dry years, these winds are weaker. Summers in the region are hot and very sunny, averaging as much as 10 hours per day. In contrast, winters are cold and average around 7 -- 8 hours of sunshine per day. Since this region has a wide range of altitudes, ranging from 500 m to nearly 7,000 m, temperatures can vary with altitude. In the lowlands of Mendoza province, which lie at an altitude of around 440 m to 530 m, mean annual temperatures range from 18.2 to 18.7 °C in the northern parts to 15 °C in the south. At higher altitude locations and in the western parts of Mendoza province, the mean annual temperatures range from −1.7 °C in Cristo Redentor to 13.6 °C with a larger difference in temperatures between winter and summer months.
In San Juan Province, the mean annual temperature ranges from 17.3 °C in the provincial capital to −0.2 °C. In San Luis
Switzerland the Swiss Confederation, is a country situated in western and southern Europe. It consists of 26 cantons, the city of Bern is the seat of the federal authorities; the sovereign state is a federal republic bordered by Italy to the south, France to the west, Germany to the north, Austria and Liechtenstein to the east. Switzerland is a landlocked country geographically divided between the Alps, the Swiss Plateau and the Jura, spanning a total area of 41,285 km2. While the Alps occupy the greater part of the territory, the Swiss population of 8.5 million people is concentrated on the plateau, where the largest cities are to be found: among them are the two global cities and economic centres Zürich and Geneva. The establishment of the Old Swiss Confederacy dates to the late medieval period, resulting from a series of military successes against Austria and Burgundy. Swiss independence from the Holy Roman Empire was formally recognized in the Peace of Westphalia in 1648; the country has a history of armed neutrality going back to the Reformation.
It pursues an active foreign policy and is involved in peace-building processes around the world. In addition to being the birthplace of the Red Cross, Switzerland is home to numerous international organisations, including the second largest UN office. On the European level, it is a founding member of the European Free Trade Association, but notably not part of the European Union, the European Economic Area or the Eurozone. However, it participates in the Schengen Area and the European Single Market through bilateral treaties. Spanning the intersection of Germanic and Romance Europe, Switzerland comprises four main linguistic and cultural regions: German, French and Romansh. Although the majority of the population are German-speaking, Swiss national identity is rooted in a common historical background, shared values such as federalism and direct democracy, Alpine symbolism. Due to its linguistic diversity, Switzerland is known by a variety of native names: Schweiz. On coins and stamps, the Latin name – shortened to "Helvetia" – is used instead of the four national languages.
Switzerland is one of the most developed countries in the world, with the highest nominal wealth per adult and the eighth-highest per capita gross domestic product according to the IMF. Switzerland ranks at or near the top globally in several metrics of national performance, including government transparency, civil liberties, quality of life, economic competitiveness and human development. Zürich and Basel have all three been ranked among the top ten cities in the world in terms of quality of life, with the first ranked second globally, according to Mercer in 2018; the English name Switzerland is a compound containing Switzer, an obsolete term for the Swiss, in use during the 16th to 19th centuries. The English adjective Swiss is a loan from French Suisse in use since the 16th century; the name Switzer is from the Alemannic Schwiizer, in origin an inhabitant of Schwyz and its associated territory, one of the Waldstätten cantons which formed the nucleus of the Old Swiss Confederacy. The Swiss began to adopt the name for themselves after the Swabian War of 1499, used alongside the term for "Confederates", used since the 14th century.
The data code for Switzerland, CH, is derived from Latin Confoederatio Helvetica. The toponym Schwyz itself was first attested in 972, as Old High German Suittes perhaps related to swedan ‘to burn’, referring to the area of forest, burned and cleared to build; the name was extended to the area dominated by the canton, after the Swabian War of 1499 came to be used for the entire Confederation. The Swiss German name of the country, Schwiiz, is homophonous to that of the canton and the settlement, but distinguished by the use of the definite article; the Latin name Confoederatio Helvetica was neologized and introduced after the formation of the federal state in 1848, harking back to the Napoleonic Helvetic Republic, appearing on coins from 1879, inscribed on the Federal Palace in 1902 and after 1948 used in the official seal.. Helvetica is derived from the Helvetii, a Gaulish tribe living on the Swiss plateau before the Roman era. Helvetia appears as a national personification of the Swiss confederacy in the 17th century with a 1672 play by Johann Caspar Weissenbach.
Switzerland has existed as a state in its present form since the adoption of the Swiss Federal Constitution in 1848. The precursors of Switzerland established a protective alliance at the end of the 13th century, forming a loose confederation of states which persisted for centuries; the oldest traces of hominid existence in Switzerland date back about 150,000 years. The oldest known farming settlements in Switzerland, which were found at Gächlingen, have been dated to around 5300 BC; the earliest known cultural tribes of the area were members of the Hallstatt and La Tène cultures, named after the archaeological site of La Tène on the north side of Lake Neuchâtel. La Tène culture developed and flourished during the late Iron Age from around 450 BC under some influence from the Gree
South America is a continent in the Western Hemisphere in the Southern Hemisphere, with a small portion in the Northern Hemisphere. It may be considered a subcontinent of the Americas, how it is viewed in the Spanish and Portuguese-speaking regions of the Americas; the reference to South America instead of other regions has increased in the last decades due to changing geopolitical dynamics. It is bordered on the west on the north and east by the Atlantic Ocean, it includes twelve sovereign states, a part of France, a non-sovereign area. In addition to this, the ABC islands of the Kingdom of the Netherlands and Tobago, Panama may be considered part of South America. South America has an area of 17,840,000 square kilometers, its population as of 2016 has been estimated at more than 420 million. South America ranks fourth in fifth in population. Brazil is by far the most populous South American country, with more than half of the continent's population, followed by Colombia, Argentina and Peru. In recent decades Brazil has concentrated half of the region's GDP and has become a first regional power.
Most of the population lives near the continent's western or eastern coasts while the interior and the far south are sparsely populated. The geography of western South America is dominated by the Andes mountains. Most of the continent lies in the tropics; the continent's cultural and ethnic outlook has its origin with the interaction of indigenous peoples with European conquerors and immigrants and, more locally, with African slaves. Given a long history of colonialism, the overwhelming majority of South Americans speak Portuguese or Spanish, societies and states reflect Western traditions. South America occupies the southern portion of the Americas; the continent is delimited on the northwest by the Darién watershed along the Colombia–Panama border, although some may consider the border instead to be the Panama Canal. Geopolitically and geographically all of Panama – including the segment east of the Panama Canal in the isthmus – is included in North America alone and among the countries of Central America.
All of mainland South America sits on the South American Plate. South America is home to Angel Falls in Venezuela. South America's major mineral resources are gold, copper, iron ore and petroleum; these resources found in South America have brought high income to its countries in times of war or of rapid economic growth by industrialized countries elsewhere. However, the concentration in producing one major export commodity has hindered the development of diversified economies; the fluctuation in the price of commodities in the international markets has led to major highs and lows in the economies of South American states causing extreme political instability. This is leading to efforts to diversify production to drive away from staying as economies dedicated to one major export. South America is one of the most biodiverse continents on earth. South America is home to many interesting and unique species of animals including the llama, piranha, vicuña, tapir; the Amazon rainforests possess high biodiversity, containing a major proportion of the Earth's species.
Brazil is the largest country in South America, encompassing around half of the continent's land area and population. The remaining countries and territories are divided among three regions: The Andean States, the Guianas and the Southern Cone. Traditionally, South America includes some of the nearby islands. Aruba, Curaçao, Trinidad and the federal dependencies of Venezuela sit on the northerly South American continental shelf and are considered part of the continent. Geo-politically, the island states and overseas territories of the Caribbean are grouped as a part or subregion of North America, since they are more distant on the Caribbean Plate though San Andres and Providencia are politically part of Colombia and Aves Island is controlled by Venezuela. Other islands that are included with South America are the Galápagos Islands that belong to Ecuador and Easter Island, Robinson Crusoe Island, Chiloé and Tierra del Fuego. In the Atlantic, Brazil owns Fernando de Noronha and Martim Vaz, the Saint Peter and Saint Paul Archipelago, while the Falkland Islands are governed by the United Kingdom, whose sovereignty over the islands is disputed by Argentina.
South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands may be associate