United Provinces of the Rio de la Plata
The United Provinces of the Río de la Plata, earlier known as the United Provinces of South America, a union of provinces in the Río de la Plata region of South America, emerged from the May Revolution in 1810 and the Argentine War of Independence of 1810–1818. It comprised most of the former Viceroyalty of the Río de la Plata dependencies and had Buenos Aires as its capital, it is best known in Spanish-language literature as Provincias Unidas del Río de la Plata, this being the most common name in use for the country until the enactment of the 1826 Constitution. The Argentine National Anthem refers to the state as "the United Provinces of the South"; the Constitution of Argentina recognises Provincias Unidas del Río de la Plata as one of the official names of the country, referred to as "Argentine Nation" in modern legislation. The United Provinces of South America were bordered on the south by the sparsely populated territories of the Pampas and Patagonia, home to the Mapuche and Puelche peoples.
To the north, the Gran Chaco was populated by the Guaycuru nations. To the northwest, across the Upper Peru, lay the Spanish Viceroyalty of Perú. Across the Andes, to the west, was the Spanish-controlled Captaincy General of Chile. To the northeast was Colonial Brazil, a part of the Portuguese Empire the Empire of Brazil in 1821; the change from the Viceroyalty into the United Provinces was not a change of governors, but a revolutionary process that would replace the absolutist monarchy with a republic. The main influences in this were the Enlightenment in Spain, promoting new ideas, the Peninsular War that left Spain without a legitimate king after the Abdications of Bayonne; the concept of separation of powers became a tool to prevent despotism. The new political situation generated great political conflict between the cities for two reasons. First, the vacatio regis removed the sovereignty from the King of Spain, but there was no clear view about who and how would be able to claim such sovereignty.
Some people thought that it passed to other offices of the Spanish monarchy, while others held the notion of the retroversion of the sovereignty to the people: sovereignty returned to the people, who had now the right to self-governance. The vertical organization of the absolutist monarchy was compromised as well. Patriots thought that all cities, both in Spain and in the Americas, had the right to self-government, whereas Royalists assigned that right only to cities in European Spain, holding that the Americas should stay subject to the new government that Spain would provide; the other source of conflict was the nature of the new governments, which declared themselves to be provisional during the King's absence but were making strong changes in the political organization. Unlike the First Republic of Venezuela, which declared independence early on, the United Provinces were faced with the inconsistency of acting like an independent state without having declared such independence; the United Provinces of the Río de la Plata were established through a lengthy process that started in May 1810, when the citizens and militias of Buenos Aires, the capital city of the Viceroyalty of the Río de la Plata, ousted the Spanish Viceroy Baltasar Hidalgo de Cisneros in the May Revolution.
Although there was not a formal declaration of independence at the time, the government that emerged from the revolution declared loyalty to the deposed king Ferdinand VII, in fact it attempted to reorganise the social and economic structures of the Viceroyalty. As it faced immediate resistance in some quarters, the revolution soon turned to be a War of Independence. In the midst of the war of independence, during the entire 1810-1831 period there were serious conflicts among ever-changing factions regarding the organization of the state and the political aims of the revolutionary governments; these conflicts involved coups d'état, politically motivated trials and imprisonments and developed into an outright civil war. Since the revolution, there were serious conflicts among diverging views regarding the political organization of the provinces. While some advocated a strong and executive central government with little accountability to the regional interests, a position at first favored by the "enlightened" revolutionary and independentist elements, others sought to integrate representatives from the provinces in a larger deliberative assembly.
As the latter position gained the upper hand, the Primera Junta grew to incorporate delegates from the provinces in 1811. However, as it became evident that such an arrangement was not effective enough to lead the war efforts, a triumvirate assumed executive powers while the assembly retained some controlling functions; the Liga Federal, or Liga de los Pueblos Libres, was an alliance of provinces in what is now Argentina and Uruguay, organised under democratic federalist ideals advocated by its leader, José Gervasio Artigas. The government of the United Provinces of South America felt threatened by the growing appeal of the Liga Federal, so they did nothing to repel the incoming Portuguese invasion of Misiones Orientales and the Banda Oriental, the stronghold of Artigas. Brazilian General Carlos Frederico Lecor, thanks to their numerical and material superiority, defea
Latin America is a group of countries and dependencies in the Western Hemisphere where Romance languages such as Spanish and French are predominantly spoken. The term "Latin America" was first used in an 1856 conference with the title "Initiative of the America. Idea for a Federal Congress of the Republics", by the Chilean politician Francisco Bilbao; the term was used by Napoleon III's French government in the 1860s as Amérique latine to consider French-speaking territories in the Americas, along with the larger group of countries where Spanish and Portuguese languages prevailed, including the Spanish-speaking portions of the United States Today, areas of Canada and the United States where Spanish and French are predominant are not included in definitions of Latin America. Latin America consists of 13 dependencies and 20 countries which cover an area that stretches from the northern border of Mexico to the southern tip of South America, including the Caribbean, it has an area of 19,197,000 km2 13% of the Earth's land surface area.
As of 2016, its population was estimated at more than 639 million and in 2014, Latin America had a combined nominal GDP of US$5,573,397 million and a GDP PPP of 7,531,585 million USD. The idea that a part of the Americas has a linguistic affinity with the Romance cultures as a whole can be traced back to the 1830s, in the writing of the French Saint-Simonian Michel Chevalier, who postulated that this part of the Americas was inhabited by people of a "Latin race", that it could, ally itself with "Latin Europe" overlapping the Latin Church, in a struggle with "Teutonic Europe", "Anglo-Saxon America" and "Slavic Europe". Further investigations of the concept of Latin America are by Michel Gobat in the American Historical Review, the studies of Leslie Bethell, the monograph by Mauricio Tenorio-Trillo, Latin America: The Allure and Power of an Idea. Historian John Leddy Phelan (located the origins of “Latin America” in the French occupation of Mexico, his argument is that French imperialists used the concept of "Latin" America as a way to counter British imperialism, as well as to challenge the German threat to France.
The idea of a "Latin race" was taken up by Latin American intellectuals and political leaders of the mid- and late-nineteenth century, who no longer looked to Spain or Portugal as cultural models, but rather to France. French ruler Napoleon III had a strong interest in extending French commercial and political power in the region he and his business promoter Felix Belly called “Latin America” to emphasize the shared Latin background of France with the former colonies of Spain and Portugal; this led to Napoleon's failed attempt to take military control of Mexico in the 1860s. However, though Phelan thesis is still mentioned in the U. S. academy, two Latin American historians, the Uruguayan Arturo Ardao and the Chilean Miguel Rojas Mix proved decades ago that the term "Latin America" was used earlier than Phelan claimed, the first use of the term was opposite to support imperialist projects in the Americas. Ardao wrote about this subject in his book Génesis de la idea y el nombre de América latina, Miguel Rojas Mix in his article "Bilbao y el hallazgo de América latina: Unión continental, socialista y libertaria".
As Michel Gobat reminds in his article "The Invention of Latin America: A Transnational History of Anti-Imperialism and Race", "Arturo Ardao, Miguel Rojas Mix, Aims McGuinness have revealed the term'Latin America' had been used in 1856 by Central and South Americans protesting U. S. expansion into the Southern Hemisphere". Edward Shawcross summarizes Ardao's and Rojas Mix's findings in the following way: "Ardao identified the term in a poem by a Colombian diplomat and intellectual resident in France, José María Torres Caicedo, published on 15 February 1857 in a French based Spanish-language newspaper, while Rojas Mix located it in a speech delivered in France by the radical liberal Chilean politician Francisco Bilbao in June 1856". So, regarding when the words "Latin" and "America" were combined for the first time in a printed work, the term "Latin America" was first used in 1856 in a conference by the Chilean politician Francisco Bilbao in Paris; the conference had the title "Initiative of the America.
Idea for a Federal Congress of Republics." The following year the Colombian writer José María Torres Caicedo used the term in his poem "The Two Americas". Two events related with the U. S. played a central role in both works. The first event happened less than a decade before the publication of Bilbao's and Torres Caicedo works: the Mexican–American War, after which Mexico lost a third of its territory; the second event, the Walker affair, happened the same year both works were written: the decision by U. S. president Franklin Pierce to recognize the regime established in Nicaragua by American William Walker and his band of filibusters who ruled Nicaragua for nearly a year and attempted to reinstate slavery there, where it had been abolished for three decades In both Bilbao's and Torres Caicedo's works, the Mexican-American War and Walker's expedition to Nicaragua are explicitly mentioned as examples of dangers for the region. For Bilbao, "Latin America" w
National Institute of Statistics and Census of Argentina
National Statistics and Censuses Institute is the Argentine government agency responsible for the collection and processing of statistical data. The institute analyses economic and social indicators such as inflation rate, consumer price index and unemployment, among others; the INDEC is supervised by different federal agencies, is under the direct oversight of the Secretaría de Programación Económica y Regional of the Ministerio de Economía y Producción. The INDEC coordinates the Sistema Estadístico Nacional through which the national and local statistical services work together; each provincial government has a statistics bureau called Dirección de Estadística, that collects and processes information. The Argentine Constitution does not provide for a national census; these were conducted only generationally until 1947, every decade since then. National censuses were taken in 1869, 1895, 1914, 1947, 1960, 1970, 1980, 1991, 2001, 2010. Demographic and economic information is permanently updated with off-year censuses, such as the Economic and Agricultural Censuses, the sampled surveys published in Encuesta Permanente de Hogares.
Monthly releases include figures on inflation, trade balances, industrial production, retail sales, GDP. The first national statistics' centre was the Dirección General de Estadística, established in 1894 as a division of the Ministry of Public Finances. Fifty years in 1944, the Consejo Nacional de Estadística y Censos was created, with dependencies on both the Ministry of the Interior and the National Presidential Office. Other agencies were formed in 1950, 1952, 1956 before the final creation of the Instituto Nacional de Estadística y Censos in 1968 by Law 17622 and Decrees 3110/70 and 1831/93; the bureau's headquarters are located in a downtown, rationalist building designed by Arturo Dubourg, commissioned by President Juan Perón for use as the Ministry of Labour, completed in 1956. Although nominally independent, INDEC is subject to strong political pressure from the government, its statistics are no longer considered trustworthy; because INDEC's statistics have been reported as being manipulated by the Kirchner government, it is considered "discredited".
Controversy arose when the government of President Néstor Kirchner replaced Graciela Bevacqua, the Consumer Prices Indicator director. Bevacqua is reported to have arrived at a consumer price increase figure of 2.0% for January 2007 from internal data but the rate reported to the public was 1.1%. The head of INDEC resigned in March, a new board of directors led by Ana María Edwin was installed by the Ministry of Economy. A group of employees protested publicly at what they saw as a violation of INDEC's autonomy, an attempt by the Economy Ministry under Felisa Miceli to illegally keep inflation indicators under one percent a month. Prosecutors gathered evidence that high government officials had inquired of statistical staff how to get lower inflation numbers, that in early 2007 managers of the price indexes had excluded products whose prices had risen more than 15% in the survey and changed price data after it came in from the field workers. Prices and the official record have continued to part ways since former Commerce Secretary Guillermo Moreno's decision to intervene in the statistics institute in 2007.
Private-sector economists and statistical offices of provincial governments show inflation two to three times higher than INDEC's number. Unions, including those from the public sector, use these independent estimates when negotiating pay rises. Surveys by Torcuato di Tella University show inflation expectations running at 25-30%. Since INDEC's headline inflation statistics have been lower than estimates from analysts in the private sector and lower than INDEC's implicit private consumption price index, incorporated in the measurement of real GDP. Taken from the first quarter of 2007, each index has read as follows: The discrepancy has led to exchanged accusations of politically motivated statistical legerdemain between the ruling party and most of the political opposition, on both left and right. Officials facing election have an incentive to understate the headline CPI figure. Opposition figures relied on estimates made by figures such as Orlando Ferreres; the practice yielded the ruling party no political benefit, helped contribute to their loss in the October 2009 mid-term elections.
An alternative explanation for the policy could rest on government finances: the national government has issued around US$100 billion in government bonds. Payments on US$50 billion of this are indexed to inflation. Other government bonds are tied in value to GDP growth. A 7-point underestimate in inflation could save the Central Bank of Argentina US$3 billion in inflation-indexed interest payments, while higher economic growth would cost added interest on bonds tied to GDP. Since 2007, when Guillermo Moreno, the secretary of internal trade
García Hurtado de Mendoza, 5th Marquis of Cañete
García Hurtado de Mendoza y Manrique, 5th Marquis of Cañete was a Spanish soldier, governor of Chile, viceroy of Peru. He is known as "Marquis of Cañete". Belonging to an influential family of Spanish noblemen Hurtado de Mendoza fought the native Mapuche during his stay as Governor of Chile, got the city of Mendoza named after him. In his position as Viceroy of Peru he sponsored Álvaro de Mendaña de Neira expedition to the Solomon Islands and had the Marquesas Islands named after him, he was the son of Andrés Hurtado de Mendoza, 3rd Marquis of Cañete — a viceroy of Peru — and Magdalena Manrique, daughter of the Count of Osorno. Both his parents belonged to some of the most influential families in the Spanish aristocracy. In 1552 Hurtado de Mendoza ran away from home with the intention of serving his king, Charles I, in an expedition the latter was preparing against Corsica. Hurtado de Mendoza demonstrated great efficiency in this campaign and in Tuscany, when that duchy attempted to throw off Imperial rule.
He was part of the Imperial army in Brussels, was with Charles V during his defeat in the Battle of Renty. Upon learning that his father had been designated viceroy of Peru, he returned to Spain and asked to be sent to America. During the journey he met Jerónimo de Alderete, chosen by the king to be the successor of Pedro de Valdivia as governor of Chile, it happened that Alderete died during the trip. Hurtado's father gathered together a group of Chilean representatives, taking advantage of a disagreement on whether Francisco de Aguirre or Francisco de Villagra was more qualified as a successor for the post, put forward his son, he hoped that his son would bring more Spaniards to Chile, additionally be able to unify the two camps in the battle for the post of governor of Chile. And he hoped he could deal with the rebellious Indians, thus Hurtado left for Chile, 21 years old, with proven ruthlessness. He was haughty, proud of his lineage and intelligence, authoritarian in outlook, subject to violent outbreaks.
His character made enemies hidden within his own circle. Hurtado de Mendoza left Peru for Chile at the head of a force of 500 Spaniards. A part of this force traveled overland under the command of Pedro de Castillo; this group left in January 1557. The other part, under the command of the new governor, more comfortably traveled by sea, leaving in February of the same year; the viceroy gave a banquet for his son, after which the fleet left port to the sound of military marches and a salute of cannons. Hurtado de Mendoza sailed with an entourage of illustrious men, including Alonso de Ercilla y Zúñiga, Francisco de Irarrázaval y Andía, Francisco Pérez de Valenzuela, Friar Gil González de San Nicolás, the Franciscan Juan Gallegos and the learned jurist Hernando de Santillán; the expedition remained there until the ninth of that month. Continuing the voyage to the south, they disembarked at La Serena on April 23, 1557; the poor people of Coquimbo were amazed at the largest continent of soldiers — more than 500 — seen in those parts, armed with harquebuses and cannons, wearing armor and crests of plumes.
They soon acquired the nickname of emplumados. Francisco de Aguirre received the new governor hospitably in La Serena. At about the same time, Francisco de Villagra arrived in La Serena by land. Knowing the animosity between Aguirre and Villagra over their aspirations to the governorship of Chile, García Hurtado did not hesitate to take both of them prisoner in La Serena, isolating them on a ship; this act was considered unjust by the Spanish settlers in Chile. Mariño de Lobera relates in his chronicle that Aguirre aboard, greeted Villagra upon his arrival, shook his hand, said: See, Your Honor, Señor General, how are the things of the world: Yesterday the two of us did not fit in one large kingdom, today Don García has made us fit on a single plank; the governor arrived at Santiago. The cabildo was making preparations to welcome him, but Hurtado decided to continue by sea to Concepción, in spite of the contrary advice of those who knew the dangers of the climate at this season. At Coquimbo he sent the cavalry on by land.
Hurtado sailed on June 1557, in full winter. He arrived eight days in the bay of Concepción in the middle of a dangerous season. During a torrential rainstorm the troops disembarked on the island of La Quiriquina and erected a provisional encampment. Once settled in Concepción, Hurtado attempted a policy of good will towards the Indians, who had accepted the rule of the governor but were not ready to accept the occupation of their territories by the newly arrived Spaniards. Lincoyan and other Indigenous leaders knew that the cavalry was coming by land from Santiago and conceived a plan to attack them at Andalicán, near Concepción. Hurtado learned of the Indigenous plan and was informed that the Mapuches interpreted his attitude as a sign of weakness and fear, he ordered that the fort of San Luis de Toledo be built in Araucana to frustrate the Indigenous initiative, but the fort was soon attacked by the Mapuches. They were defeated, the governor counterattacked with his cannons and harquebuses.
He ordered a new campaign in October 1557, with a strong force of 500 soldiers and thousands of Indian auxiliaries. The Battle of Lagunillas occurred during this campaign, on November 7. In this battle the Spanish survived because of the valor demonstrated by Rodrigo de Quiroga and the other captains; the Mapuches showed themsel
A cabildo or ayuntamiento was a Spanish colonial, early post-colonial, administrative council which governed a municipality. Cabildos were sometimes appointed, sometimes elected; the colonial cabildo was the same as the one developed in medieval Castile. The cabildo was the legal representative of the municipality—and its vecinos—before the Crown, therefore it was among the first institutions established by the conquistadors themselves after, or before, taking over an area. For example, Hernán Cortés established La Villa Rica de la Vera Cruz to free himself from the authority of the Governor of Cuba; the word cabildo has the same Latin root as the English word chapter, in fact, is the Spanish word for a cathedral chapter. The term ayuntamiento was preceded by the word excelentísimo as a style of office, when referring to the council; this phrase is abbreviated Exc.mo Ay.to The Castilian cabildo has some similarities to the ancient Roman municipium and civitas—especially in the use of plural administrative officers and its control of the surrounding countryside, the territorium—but its evolution is a uniquely medieval development.
With the collapse of the Western Roman Empire and the establishment of the Visigothic Kingdom, the ancient municipal government vanished. In many areas, seeking to escape from the political instability around them, people entrusted themselves to large landholders, exchanging their service for the landholder's protection, in a process that led to feudalism. In areas where the old territoria survived, the Visigothic kings appointed a single officer, called either a comes or a iudice to replace the defunct municipia or civitates. After the Muslim conquest, the new rulers appointed various judicial officers to manage the affairs of the cities. Qadis heard any cases that fell under the purview of Sharia law and sahibs oversaw the administration of the various other areas of urban life, such as the markets and the public order; the cabildo proper began its slow evolution in the process of the Reconquista. As fortified areas grew into urban centers or older cities were incorporated into the expanding Christian kingdoms of Portugal, León and Castile, kings granted the cities various levels of self-rule and unique sets of laws and made them the administrative center of a large terminus or alfoz, analogous to the ancient territorium.
In general, municipal governments consisted of a council open to all the property-owning adult males of the city and a nobleman appointed to represent the king and organize the defense of the city and terminus. By the 13th century, these open councils proved unwieldy and were replaced by a smaller body, the cabildo or ayuntamiento consisting of set number of regidores elected by the property owners in the city; these new bodies took their permanent form by the end of the 14th century. As part of the same process, a municipal council with different attributes and composition evolved in the neighboring Kingdom of Aragon during this period. In theory, every municipality in the Spanish colonies in the Americas and the Spanish Philippines had a cabildo. Municipalities were not just the cities. All lands were assigned to a municipality; the cabildo made local laws and reported to the presidente of the audiencia, who in turn reported to the viceroy. The cabildo had judicial and administrative duties.
For this reason it was addressed with the formula, Justicia y Regimiento. The cabildo consisted of several types of officials. There were four depending on the size and importance of the municipality. Regidores, were not just deliberative officers, but all shared in the administration of the territory, dividing tasks among themselves; the regidores were elected by all the heads of household. In the late Middle Ages, these elections turned violent, with citizens forming bands to control elections and resorting to murder. To minimize this kings began to appoint a certain number of, or all of, the regidores in certain cities. By the modern era different cabildos had different mixes of elected and appointed regidores both on the Peninsula and overseas. To add another layer of control, the kings introduced corregidores to represent them directly and preside over the cabildos. Although many municipalities lost their right to elect all or some of their regidores as time went on, cities and cabildos gained new power with the development of the Castilian and Leonese parliaments because cities had a right to representation in them.
In addition to the council members, the cabildo had one or two magistrates, the alcaldes, whom the regidores elected every January 1. Alcaldes served as judges of first instance in all criminal and civil cases and acted as presiding officers of the cabildo, unless there was a corregidor. In provincial capitals the first alcalde would fill in for incapacitated governors. Other officers were the alférez real, who had a vote in cabildo deliberations and would substitute the alcalde if the latter could not carry out the functions of his office. After the Bou
A census is the procedure of systematically acquiring and recording information about the members of a given population. The term is used in connection with national population and housing censuses; the United Nations defines the essential features of population and housing censuses as "individual enumeration, universality within a defined territory and defined periodicity", recommends that population censuses be taken at least every 10 years. United Nations recommendations cover census topics to be collected, official definitions and other useful information to co-ordinate international practice; the word is of Latin origin: during the Roman Republic, the census was a list that kept track of all adult males fit for military service. The modern census is essential to international comparisons of any kind of statistics, censuses collect data on many attributes of a population, not just how many people there are. Censuses began as the only method of collecting national demographic data, are now part of a larger system of different surveys.
Although population estimates remain an important function of a census, including the geographic distribution of the population, statistics can be produced about combinations of attributes e.g. education by age and sex in different regions. Current administrative data systems allow for other approaches to enumeration with the same level of detail but raise concerns about privacy and the possibility of biasing estimates. A census can be contrasted with sampling in which information is obtained only from a subset of a population. Modern census data are used for research, business marketing, planning, as a baseline for designing sample surveys by providing a sampling frame such as an address register. Census counts are necessary to adjust samples to be representative of a population by weighting them as is common in opinion polling. Stratification requires knowledge of the relative sizes of different population strata which can be derived from census enumerations. In some countries, the census provides the official counts used to apportion the number of elected representatives to regions.
In many cases, a chosen random sample can provide more accurate information than attempts to get a population census. A census is construed as the opposite of a sample as its intent is to count everyone in a population rather than a fraction. However, population censuses rely on a sampling frame to count the population; this is the only way to be sure that everyone has been included as otherwise those not responding would not be followed up on and individuals could be missed. The fundamental premise of a census is that the population is not known and a new estimate is to be made by the analysis of primary data; the use of a sampling frame is counterintuitive as it suggests that the population size is known. However, a census is used to collect attribute data on the individuals in the nation; this process of sampling marks the difference between historical census, a house to house process or the product of an imperial decree, the modern statistical project. The sampling frame used by census is always an address register.
Thus it is not known how many people there are in each household. Depending on the mode of enumeration, a form is sent to the householder, an enumerator calls, or administrative records for the dwelling are accessed; as a preliminary to the dispatch of forms, census workers will check any address problems on the ground. While it may seem straightforward to use the postal service file for this purpose, this can be out of date and some dwellings may contain a number of independent households. A particular problem is what are termed'communal establishments' which category includes student residences, religious orders, homes for the elderly, people in prisons etc; as these are not enumerated by a single householder, they are treated differently and visited by special teams of census workers to ensure they are classified appropriately. Individuals are counted within households and information is collected about the household structure and the housing. For this reason international documents refer to censuses of housing.
The census response is made by a household, indicating details of individuals resident there. An important aspect of census enumerations is determining which individuals can be counted from which cannot be counted. Broadly, three definitions can be used: de facto residence; this is important to consider individuals who have temporary addresses. Every person should be identified uniquely as resident in one place but where they happen to be on Census Day, their de facto residence, may not be the best place to count them. Where an individual uses services may be more useful and this is at their usual, or de jure, residence. An individual may be represented at a permanent address a family home for students or long term migrants, it is necessary to have a precise definition of residence to decide whether visitors to a country should be included in the population count. This is becoming more important as students travel abroad for education for a period of several years. Other groups causing problems of enumeration are new born babies, people away on holiday, people moving home around census day, people without a fixed address.
People having second homes because of working in another part of the country or retaining a holiday cottage are dif
Olive oil is a liquid fat obtained from olives, a traditional tree crop of the Mediterranean Basin. The oil is produced by pressing whole olives, it is used in cooking, whether for frying or as a salad dressing. It is used in cosmetics and soaps, as a fuel for traditional oil lamps, has additional uses in some religions. There is limited evidence of its possible health benefits; the olive is one of three core food plants in Mediterranean cuisine. Olive trees have been grown around the Mediterranean since the 8th millennium BC. Spain is the largest producer of olive oil, followed by Greece. However, per capita national consumption is highest in Greece, followed by Spain and Morocco. Consumption in South Asia, North America and northern Europe is far less; the composition of olive oil varies with the cultivar, time of harvest and extraction process. It consists of oleic acid, with smaller amounts of other fatty acids including linoleic acid and palmitic acid. Extra virgin olive oil is required to have no more than 0.8% free acidity and is considered to have favorable flavor characteristics.
The olive tree is native to the Mediterranean basin. The wild olive tree originated in ancient Greece, it is not clear when and where olive trees were first domesticated: in Asia Minor, in the Levant, or somewhere in the Mesopotamian part of the Fertile Crescent. Archaeological evidence shows that olives were turned into olive oil by 6000 BC and 4500 BC at a now-submerged prehistoric settlement south of Haifa; until 1500 BC, eastern coastal areas of the Mediterranean were most cultivated. Evidence suggests that olives were being grown in Crete as long ago as 2500 BC; the earliest surviving olive oil amphorae date to 3500 BC, though the production of olive oil is assumed to have started before 4000 BC. Olive trees were cultivated by the Late Minoan period in Crete, as early as the Early Minoan; the cultivation of olive trees in Crete became intense in the post-palatial period and played an important role in the island's economy, as it did across the Mediterranean. Recent genetic studies suggest that species used by modern cultivators descend from multiple wild populations, but a detailed history of domestication is not yet forthcoming.
Olive trees and oil production in the Eastern Mediterranean can be traced to archives of the ancient city-state Ebla, which were located on the outskirts of the Syrian city Aleppo. Here some dozen documents dated 2400 BC describe lands of the queen; these belonged to a library of clay tablets preserved by having been baked in the fire that destroyed the palace. A source is the frequent mentions of oil in the Tanakh. Dynastic Egyptians before 2000 BC imported olive oil from Crete and Canaan and oil was an important item of commerce and wealth. Remains of olive oil have been found in jugs over 4,000 years old in a tomb on the island of Naxos in the Aegean Sea. Sinuhe, the Egyptian exile who lived in northern Canaan about 1960 BC, wrote of abundant olive trees. Besides food, olive oil has been used for religious rituals, medicines, as a fuel in oil lamps, soap-making, skin care application; the Minoans used olive oil in religious ceremonies. The oil became a principal product of the Minoan civilization, where it is thought to have represented wealth.
Olive oil, a multi-purpose product of Mycenaean Greece at that time, was a chief export. Olive tree growing reached Iberia and Etruscan cities well before the 8th century BC through trade with the Phoenicians and Carthage was spread into Southern Gaul by the Celtic tribes during the 7th century BC; the first recorded oil extraction is known from the Hebrew Bible and took place during the Exodus from Egypt during the 13th century BC. During this time, the oil was derived through hand-squeezing the berries and stored in special containers under guard of the priests. A commercial mill for non-sacramental use of oil was in use in the tribal confederation and in 1000 BC, in the Levant, an area consisting of present-day Lebanon and Palestine. Over 100 olive presses have been found in Tel Miqne, one of the five main cities of the Biblical Philistines; these presses are estimated to have had output of between 1,000 and 3,000 tons of olive oil per season. Many ancient presses still exist in the Eastern Mediterranean region, some dating to the Roman period are still in use today.
Olive oil was common in ancient Greek and Roman cuisine. According to Herodotus, Plutarch, Pausanias and other sources, the city of Athens obtained its name because Athenians considered olive oil essential, preferring the offering of the goddess Athena over the offering of Poseidon; the Spartans and other Greeks used oil to rub themselves while exercising in the gymnasia. From its beginnings early in the 7th century BC, the cosmetic use of olive oil spread to all of the Hellenic city states, together with athletes training in the nude, lasted close to a thousand years despite its great expense. Olive oil was popular as a form of birth control. Olive trees were planted throughout the entire Mediterranean basin during evolution of the Roman Republic and Empire. According to the