Constituencies of Belize
Belize's 6 districts are politically divided into 31 constituencies. Each constituency sends one representative to Belize's House of Representatives for 5-year terms; this election is known as the General Election. Each person votes for the candidate they would want to represent their constituency in Central Government; each political party nominates Standard Bearer for each constituency. The winner becomes the Area Representative of the constituency, while the loser remains the Standard Bearer of that constituency for his/her political party. Belize's constituencies are divided in such a way that their voting population be as equal as possible to each other ensuring, that resources are shared among the country's citizens, as required by the constitution. After the 2003 General Elections two additional constituencies were created from territory of existing constituencies in order to further ensure the equality of the voting populations among the constituencies. Coming out of January 2008, the most populous constituency had a voting population of 7,085 while the least populous constituency had a voting population of 3,195.
In Belize's 2003 General Elections, 29 constituencies voted in their Area Representatives for Belize's House of Representatives. Since it was noted that the difference in voting populations between the most and least populous constituencies was rather large. In 2004 a Task Force was appointed by Boundaries Commission to study the matter, their Final Report was submitted in October 2004. It is noted that the Elections and Boundaries Department has the right to reassess constituencies after the latest census or population estimate. Among several things that their report suggested, the expansion of the Cayo District's number of constituencies to six had the most impact; the following year the law was passed to create two additional constituencies within the boundaries of Cayo. The newly created constituencies are Belmopan, containing the capital city of that name, Cayo North East, centered on Spanish Lookout; these new constituencies held their first-ever election during the General Election in 2008.
Below are the Districts and their respective constituencies: Belize District Albert Belize Rural Central Belize Rural North Belize Rural South Caribbean Shores Collet Fort George Freetown Lake Independence Mesopotamia Pickstock Port Loyola Queen's Square Cayo District Belmopan Cayo Central Cayo North Cayo North East Cayo South Cayo West Corozal District Corozal Bay Corozal North Corozal South East Corozal South West Orange Walk District Orange Walk Central Orange Walk East Orange Walk North Orange Walk South Stann Creek District Dangriga Stann Creek West Toledo District Toledo East Toledo West Below is a list of the voting population by constituency as of March 2015, sorted out by districts for ease of reference. Note that these populations are for Belizean citizens who are eligible to vote and does not represent actual population; as of March 2015 the voting population of Belize is estimated at 148,026 while the total population is estimated at 301,300. The Voter Age Population, i.e. all persons over the age of eighteen, is 161,677, or 53.66% of the total population.
Of these, more than 91 percent are registered. Males outnumber females in the population, though the gap is noticeable in the larger urban areas such as Belize City, home to 10 constituencies. Below is the chronological order for the creation of Belize's current constituencies. 1954 The following were the nine original constituencies created for the British Honduras Legislative Assembly: Belize District: Belize North, Belize Rural, Belize South, Belize West Cayo District: Cayo Corozal District: Corozal Orange Walk District: Orange Walk Stann Creek District: Stann Creek Toledo District: Toledo 1961 In a major nationwide redistricting, all of the previous constituencies were abolished and replaced with the following, doubling the total number of constituencies to 18: Belize District: Albert, Belize Rural North, Belize Rural South, Fort George, Mesopotamia, Pickstock Cayo District: Cayo North, Cayo South Corozal District: Corozal North, Corozal South Orange Walk District: Orange Walk North, Orange Walk South Stann Creek District: Stann Creek Town, Stann Creek Rural Toledo District: Toledo North, Toledo South 1973 British Honduras renamed Belize.
The British Honduras Legislative Assembly becomes the Belize House of Representatives. 1979 The following were renamed: Stann Creek District: Stann Creek Town renamed Dangriga, Stann Creek Rural renamed Stann Creek West. 1984 The following constituencies were created: Belize District: Caribbean Shores, Lake Independence, Queen's Square, Port Loyola Cayo District: Cayo Central, Cayo West Corozal District: Corozal Bay Orange Walk District: Orange Walk Central, Orange Walk East The following were altered: Corozal District: Corozal South was split into Corozal South East and Corozal South West Toledo District: Toledo North and Toledo South were abolished, replaced by Toledo East and Toledo West 1993 The following constituency was created: Belize District: Belize Rural Central 2008 The following constituencies were created: Cayo District: Belmopan, Cayo North East Politics of Belize Districts of Belize Belize Elections & Boundaries Department's Map of Belize's Constituencies Government of Belize's Official Website Boundary Re-districting
Belize City is the largest city in Belize and was once the capital of the former British Honduras. According to the 2010 census, Belize City has a population of 57,169 people in 16,162 households, it is at the mouth of the Haulover Creek, a tributary of the Belize River. The Belize River empties into the Caribbean Sea five miles from Belize City on the Philip Goldson Highway on the coast of the Caribbean; the city is the country's principal port and its financial and industrial hub. Cruise ships drop anchor outside the port and are tendered by local citizens; the city was entirely destroyed in 1961 when Hurricane Hattie swept ashore on October 31. It was the capital of British Honduras until the government was moved to the new capital of Belmopan in 1970. Belize City was founded as "Belize Town" in 1638 by English lumber harvesters, it had been a small Maya city called Holzuz. Belize Town was ideal for the English as a central post because it was on the sea and a natural outlet for local rivers and creeks down which the British shipped logwood and mahogany.
Belize Town became the home of the thousands of African slaves brought in by the English to toil in the forest industry. It was the coordination site for the 1798 Battle of St. George's Caye, won by the British against would-be invaders, the home of the local courts and government officials up to the 1970s. For this reason, historians say that "the capital was the colony", because the center of British control was here; this sentiment remains true today. Though people like Antonio Soberanis, George Price and Evan X Hyde all lobbied to take their movements outside, other ethnic groups such as the Garifuna and Mestizos sprang up elsewhere in the country, people looked to Belize Town for guidance. Belize City has been directly struck by two hurricanes since 1900, the 1931 hurricane and 1961's Hurricane Hattie, at various times areas of the city have burnt down, the most recent being the 1999 Albert Street fire that burnt out Mikado's, a 2004 fire that destroyed the Paslow Building; the city was hit hard by Hurricane Richard in 2010 and by the 2016 Hurricane Earl.
Fires on Northside and Southside have burnt out great stretches of housing, but the fire department was able to quench most of these. The city is susceptible to flooding in the rainy season. Belize City spreads out Mile 6 on the Western Highway and Mile 5 on the Northern Highway, at the Haulover Bridge; the city proper is divided into two areas: Northside, bounded by Haulover Creek and ending in the east at the Fort George area, Southside, extending to the outskirts of the city and the port area including downtown. Politically, it is divided into ten constituencies. Freetown, the westernmost constituency on Northside, is home to the Belama, Coral Grove, Buttonwood Bay and Vista Del Mar suburbs. Within the city proper it extends up to around the former Belize Technical College area. Caribbean Shores includes Kings' Park, a small suburb north and west of Freetown Road, West Landivar, home to two of the University of Belize's three city campuses, residential University Heights. Pickstock inhabits the banks of the Haulover Creek extending to Barrack Road.
St. John's Cathedral stands on the southern end of Albert Street. St. John's is the oldest Anglican Church in Central America, one of the oldest buildings in Belize; the orange bricks came to Belize aboard British ships as ballast. Construction began in 1812, the church was completed in 1820. St. John's is the only Anglican cathedral in the world outside England where the crowning of kings took place. Fort George is the most colonial area in the city and contains Memorial Park, the Baron Bliss Grave and Baron Bliss Lighthouse and the Museum of Belize. On the Southside, Lake Independence and Port Loyola are home to some of the city's poorest residents. "London bridges", rickety wooden pallets linking dwellings, low-strung poles are not uncommon here. On the east side of Central American Boulevard are Mesopotamia, Queen's Square and Albert, which are better. Albert contains the downtown streets of Albert and Regent Streets; the divisions of the city are linked by four bridges: the Swing Bridge, at Market Square and North Front Street.
Numerous smaller bridges link individual streets. The three main canals running in Belize City, are Haulover Creek, Burdon Canal and Collet Canal. All of them run through Southside; the city is served by Philip S. W. Goldson International Airport, in Ladyville, northwest of Belize City, by Belize City Municipal Airport, within the city itself. Belize City features a tropical monsoon climate, with warm and humid conditions throughout the course of the year; the city has a lengthy wet season that runs from May through January and a short dry season covering the remaining three months. However, as is the characteristic of several cities with tropical monsoon climates, Belize City sees some precipitation during its dry season. March is Belize City's driest month with only 48 mm of precipitation observed, a somewhat unusual month for a city with this climate type; the driest month for a city with a tropical monsoon climate is the month after the winter solstice, which in Belize City would be January.
Average monthly temperatures remain constant throughout the course of the year, ranging from 23 °C to 28 °C. B
The Maya civilization was a Mesoamerican civilization developed by the Maya peoples, noted for its logosyllabic script—the most sophisticated and developed writing system in pre-Columbian Americas—as well as for its art, mathematics and astronomical system. The Maya civilization developed in an area that encompasses southeastern Mexico, all of Guatemala and Belize, the western portions of Honduras and El Salvador; this region consists of the northern lowlands encompassing the Yucatán Peninsula, the highlands of the Sierra Madre, running from the Mexican state of Chiapas, across southern Guatemala and onwards into El Salvador, the southern lowlands of the Pacific littoral plain. The Archaic period, prior to 2000 BC, saw the first developments in agriculture and the earliest villages; the Preclassic period saw the establishment of the first complex societies in the Maya region, the cultivation of the staple crops of the Maya diet, including maize, beans and chili peppers. The first Maya cities developed around 750 BC, by 500 BC these cities possessed monumental architecture, including large temples with elaborate stucco façades.
Hieroglyphic writing was being used in the Maya region by the 3rd century BC. In the Late Preclassic a number of large cities developed in the Petén Basin, the city of Kaminaljuyu rose to prominence in the Guatemalan Highlands. Beginning around 250 AD, the Classic period is defined as when the Maya were raising sculpted monuments with Long Count dates; this period saw the Maya civilization develop a large number of city-states linked by a complex trade network. In the Maya Lowlands two great rivals, the cities of Tikal and Calakmul, became powerful; the Classic period saw the intrusive intervention of the central Mexican city of Teotihuacan in Maya dynastic politics. In the 9th century, there was a widespread political collapse in the central Maya region, resulting in internecine warfare, the abandonment of cities, a northward shift of population; the Postclassic period saw the rise of Chichen Itza in the north, the expansion of the aggressive Kʼicheʼ kingdom in the Guatemalan Highlands. In the 16th century, the Spanish Empire colonized the Mesoamerican region, a lengthy series of campaigns saw the fall of Nojpetén, the last Maya city, in 1697.
Classic period rule was centred on the concept of the "divine king", who acted as a mediator between mortals and the supernatural realm. Kingship was patrilineal, power would pass to the eldest son. A prospective king was expected to be a successful war leader. Maya politics was dominated by a closed system of patronage, although the exact political make-up of a kingdom varied from city-state to city-state. By the Late Classic, the aristocracy had increased, resulting in the corresponding reduction in the exclusive power of the divine king; the Maya civilization developed sophisticated artforms, the Maya created art using both perishable and non-perishable materials, including wood, obsidian, sculpted stone monuments and finely painted murals. Maya cities tended to expand haphazardly, the city centre would be occupied by ceremonial and administrative complexes, surrounded by an irregular sprawl of residential districts. Different parts of a city would be linked by causeways; the principal architecture of the city consisted of palaces, pyramid-temples, ceremonial ballcourts, structures aligned for astronomical observation.
The Maya elite were literate, developed a complex system of hieroglyphic writing, the most advanced in the pre-Columbian Americas. The Maya recorded their history and ritual knowledge in screenfold books, of which only three uncontested examples remain, the rest having been destroyed by the Spanish. There are a great many examples of Maya text found on stelae and ceramics; the Maya developed a complex series of interlocking ritual calendars, employed mathematics that included one of the earliest instances of the explicit zero in the world. As a part of their religion, the Maya practised human sacrifice; the Maya civilization developed within the Mesoamerican cultural area, which covers a region that spreads from northern Mexico southwards into Central America. Mesoamerica was one of six cradles of civilization worldwide; the Mesoamerican area gave rise to a series of cultural developments that included complex societies, cities, monumental architecture and calendrical systems. The set of traits shared by Mesoamerican cultures included astronomical knowledge and human sacrifice, a cosmovision that viewed the world as divided into four divisions aligned with the cardinal directions, each with different attributes, a three-way division of the world into the celestial realm, the earth, the underworld.
By 6000 BC, the early inhabitants of Mesoamerica were experimenting with the domestication of plants, a process that led to the establishment of sedentary agricultural societies. The diverse climate allowed for wide variation in available crops, but all regions of Mesoamerica cultivated the base crops of maize and squashes. All Mesoamerican cultures used Stone Age technology. Mesoamerica lacked draft animals, did not use the wheel, possessed few domesticated animals. Mesoamericans viewed the world as hostile and governed by unpredictable deities; the ritual Mesoamerican ballgame was played. Mesoamerica is linguistically diverse, with most languages falling within a small number of language families—the major families are Mayan, Mixe–Zoquean and Uto-Aztecan.
Mestizo is a term traditionally used in Spain, Latin America and the Philippines that referred to a person of combined European and Indigenous American descent, regardless of where the person was born. The term was used as an ethnic/racial category in the casta system, in use during the Spanish Empire's control of its American and Asian colonies. Nowadays though in Spanish America, mestizo has become more of a cultural term, with culturally mainstream Latin Americans regarded or termed as mestizos regardless of their actual ancestry and with the term Indian being reserved for people who have maintained a separate indigenous ethnic identity, tribal affiliation, etc. Today, the vast majority of Spanish-speaking Latin Americans are regarded as mestizos; the term mestizaje – taking as its root mestizo or mixed – is the Spanish word for miscegenation, the general process of mixing ancestries. To avoid confusion with the original usage of the term mestizo, mixed people started to be referred to collectively as castas.
In some Latin American countries, such as Mexico, the concept of the mestizo became central to the formation of a new independent identity, neither wholly Spanish nor wholly indigenous, the word mestizo acquired its current meaning, it being used by the government to refer to all Mexicans who do not speak indigenous languages, including people of complete European or indigenous descent as well as Asians and Africans. In colonial Venezuela, pardo was more used instead of mestizo. Pardo means being mixed without specifying which mixture. In the Spanish system of racial hierarchy, the sistema de castas, mestizos/pardos, who formed the majority, had fewer rights than the minority elite European-born persons called peninsulares, the minority white colonial-born whites criollo, but more rights than the now-minority indio, negro and zambo populations; the Portuguese cognate, mestiço referred to any mixture of Portuguese and local populations in the Portuguese colonies. In colonial Brazil most of the non-slave population was mestiço de indio, i.e. mixed white and native Brazilian.
There was no descent-based casta system, children of upper class white landlord males and female slaves would enjoy privileges higher than the ones given to the lower classes, such as formal education, though such cases were not so common and they tended to not inherit property given to the children of free women, who tended to be legitimate offspring in cases of concubinage. In Portuguese India the mixed population was known as mestiços and the local Indian Christians as indiacatos. In the Philippines, a colony of Spain, the term mestizo came to refer to a Filipino with any foreign ancestry white, shortened as Tisoy. In Indonesia, the term mestizo refers to ethnicity, a mixture of Europeans and native Indonesians, they are called as Indo people. In Canada, the Métis people is a distinct community composed of the descendants of Europeans involved in the fur trade and North American Indigenous peoples of what is now Western Canada. In Saint Barthélemy, the term mestizo refers to people of East Asian ancestry.
The Spanish word mestizo is from Latin mixticius, meaning mixed. Its usage has been documented as early as 1275, to refer to the offspring of an Egyptian and a Semite; this term was first documented in English in 1582. In the United States and other English-speaking countries and cultures, mestizo, as a loanword from Spanish, is used to mean a non-white of mixed European and American Indian descent generally with connection to a Latin American culture or of Latin American descent, a concept much stricter than that found in Romance languages, it is related to the particular racial identity of historical non-white Amerindian-descended Hispanic and Latino American communities in an American context. In English-speaking Canada, Canadian Métis, as a loanword from French, refers to persons of mixed French and Indigenous ancestry. French-speaking Canadians, when using the word métis, are referring to Canadian Métis ethnicity, all persons of mixed Amerindian and European ancestry, rather than the broader concept of mixed-race people in general, present in all other French-speaking countries, as would speakers of Spanish.
In the United States, Métis Americans and Mestizo Americans are two distinct racial and ethno-racial identities, as reflected in the use of French and Spanish loanwords, respectively. In the Philippines, the word mestizo refers to a Filipino with combined Indigenous and European ancestry, but it will be used for a Filipino with apparent Chinese ancestry, who will be referred to as'chinito'; the latter was listed as a "mestizo de sangley" in birth records of the 19th century, with'sangley' as a reference to the Hokkienese word for business,'seng-li'. In the Portuguese-speaking world, the contemporary sense has been the closest to the historical usage from the Middle Ages, because of important linguistic differences, so that mestiço is separated altoget
Xunantunich is an Ancient Maya archaeological site in western Belize, about 70 miles west of Belize City, in the Cayo District. Xunantunich is located atop a ridge above the Mopan River, well within sight of the Guatemala border –, a mere 0.6 miles to the west. It served as a Maya civic ceremonial center in the Late and Terminal Classic periods to the Belize Valley region. At this time, when the region was at its peak, nearly 200,000 people lived in Belize. Xunantunich’s name means "Sculpture of Lady" in the Maya language, like many names given to Maya archaeological sites, is a modern name; the "Stone Woman" refers to the ghost of a woman claimed by several people to inhabit the site, beginning in 1892. She is dressed in white, has fire-red glowing eyes, she appears in front of "El Castillo", ascends the stone stairs, disappears into a stone wall. The first modern explorations of the site were conducted by Thomas Gann in the mid-1890s. Gann moved from Britain and served as the district surgeon and district commissioner of Cayo, British Honduras, starting in 1892.
He chose this area to settle in because he had an interest in Mayan archaeology, he wished to be able to explore the unknown wonders of the indigenous people. Gann’s successor, Sir J. Eric S. Thompson, implemented a more methodical approach, was able to establish the region’s first ceramic chronology; the main recent archaeological teams to work at Xunantunich and the surrounding region are the Xunantunich Archaeological Project and the Xunantunich Settlement Survey. In 1959-60, the Cambridge Expedition to British Honduras arrived in the colony and its archaeologist member, Euan MacKie, carried out several months of excavation at Xunantunich, he excavated the upper building on Structure A-11 in Group B and a newly discovered residential structure, A-15, just outside the main complex. Using the European method of detailed recording of the stratigraphy of the superficial deposits he was able to infer that both buildings had been shattered by a sudden disaster which marked the end of the Classic period occupation.
An earthquake was tentatively proposed as the cause. He was able to confirm the part of the pottery sequence constructed by Thompson; the detailed report by MacKie is "Excavations at Xunantunich and Pomona, Belize, in 1959-60". British Archaeological Reports, 251, 1985: Oxford. Farmers that fed the people living in Xunantunich lived in small villages, divided into kin-based residential groups; the farms were spread out over the landscape, though the center of Xunantunich itself is rather small in comparison. These villages were economically self-sufficient, which may be the reason why Xunantunich lasted as long as they did. Settlement density was relative to soil quality, proximity to rivers, localized political histories. Since the farmers were long established on their plots of land, they would not want to be involved with a polity, under constant upheaval due to invading forces and more. Other nearby Maya archaeological sites include Chaa Creek and Cahal Pech, Buenavista del Cayo, Naranjo. There is evidence of Xunantunich being settled as early as the ceramic phase of the Preclassic period.
The findings have been insubstantial to prove. It was not until the Samal phase in AD 600-670 that Xunantunich began to grow in size. Architectural constructions boomed in Hats’ Chaak phase when Xunantunich’s connection with the polity Naranjo solidified. Left in a state of abandonment at AD 750 due to an unknown violent event, Xunantunich did not re-establish itself as a strong presence in the region until Tsak’ phase in AD 780-890; the core of the city Xunantunich occupies about one square mile, consisting of a series of six plazas surrounded by more than 26 temples and palaces. As a polity in whole, Xunantunich contains 140 mounds per square km, as discovered in the surveys done by the XSS. One of Xunantunich's better known structures is the pyramid known as "El Castillo"; the site is broken up into four sections – Group A, Group B, Group C, Group D, with Group A being central and most significant to the people. Prior to the seventh century, the site was occupied by small houses, formulating the occasional village.
With the architectural boom in the Samal phase, we see the extreme importance of cosmological and political placing of the monuments in relation to the axis mundi. It is the second tallest structure at some 130 feet tall. El Castillo is the intersection of the two cardinal lines. Evidence of construction suggests. Structure A-6-2nd had three doorways, whereas Structure A-6-1st only had doors on the north and south; the pyramid lays underneath a series of terraces. The fine stucco or "friezes" are located on the final stage; the northern and southern friezes have eroded, the others were covered during the reconstr
Belmopan is the capital city of Belize. Its population in 2010 was 16,451. Although the smallest capital city in the continental Americas by population, Belmopan is the third-largest settlement in Belize, behind Belize City and San Ignacio. Founded as a planned community in 1970, Belmopan is one of the newest national capital cities in the world. Since 2000 Belmopan has been one of two settlements in Belize to hold official city status, along with Belize City. Belmopan is located in Cayo District at an altitude of 76 metres above sea level. Belmopan was constructed just to the east of the Belize River, 80 km inland from the former capital, the port of Belize City, after that city's near destruction by Hurricane Hattie in 1961; the government was moved to Belmopan in 1970. Its National Assembly Building is designed to resemble a Pre-Columbian Maya temple. After Hurricane Hattie in 1961 destroyed 75% of the houses and business places in low-lying and coastal Belize City, the government proposed to encourage and promote the building of a new capital city.
This new capital would be on better terrain, would entail no costly reclamation of land, would provide for an industrial area. In 1962, a committee chose the site now known as Belmopan, 82 kilometres west of the old capital of Belize City. Since Belize was a British colony in 1964, Premier George Cadle Price led a delegation to London to seek funds to finance the new capital. Although they were not ready to commit to funding such a large project, the British government showed interest due to the logic of locating the capital on high ground safe from storm surges. To encourage financial commitment from the British government, Premier Price and the PUP government invited Anthony Greenwood, Secretary of State for the Commonwealth and Colonies, to visit Belize. One of the highlights of this visit was the unveiling of a monument at mile 49 on the Western Highway; the monument records that Lord Greenwood dedicated the site for the new capital on 9 October 1965. In a way, there was a commitment; the name chosen for the new capital, Belmopan, is derived from the union of two words: "Belize", the name of the longest river in the country, "Mopan", one of the rivers in this area, which empties into the Belize River.
The initial estimated cost for building this new city was 40 million Belize dollars. Only 20 million Belize dollars were available. In 1967, work began. From 1970 to 2000 the administration of Belmopan was managed by the Reconstruction and Development Corporation, known as "Recondev." Recondev was vested with the power and authority to provide, or cause to be provided, the municipal functions necessary for the smooth running of the city's business and infrastructure. There was a reluctance amongst foreign governments to relocate their embassies to Belmopan as there was some doubt as to whether this inland area would become the functioning capital; the British High Commission opened in 1981 when Belize achieved independence, moving to its current location in 1984. In February 2005, the United States government broke ground and started building a new embassy in Belmopan, 43 years after it was chosen as the new capital city; the U. S. embassy was opened on 11 December 2006. Mexico, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Venezuela have embassies in Belmopan, while Ecuador and the Dominican Republic are represented by consulates.
However, with four embassies and 29 consulates the former capital of Belize City still has most of the country's foreign diplomatic community. The city layout centers around the Ring Road, just under 4 km in circumference; the majority of government buildings are situated either within or around the Ring Road, a large area within the Ring Road is given to parkland. The National Assembly Building is the focal point of the city's design, with the grey stone architecture and broad steps designed to resemble a Mayan temple, reflecting the nation's cultural heritage. Surrounding buildings mirror this design, with the East Wing and West Wing buildings contributing to the overall impression of an ancient Mayan plaza; the original buildings were designed with extensive ventilation to accommodate the tropical climate leading to a pock-marked effect on the buildings' walls. Extensive internal renovations and the widespread introduction of air-conditioners has caused this design to become ineffective and inefficient.
Belmopan is 50 miles inland from the Caribbean Sea and 76 meters above sea level, located near the Belize River Valley with a view of the Mountain Pine Ridge foothills. The city is off the Hummingbird Highway. Two and a half hours south of Belmopan, by road, is the Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary, it is served by the Hector Silva Airstrip. Belmopan features a tropical monsoon climate under the Köppen climate classification; the city has a lengthy wet season that runs from May through February and a short dry season covering the remaining two months. As is the characteristic of several cities with a tropical monsoon climate, Belmopan sees some precipitation during its dry season. March and April are Belmopan's driest months with 45 mm of rainfall observed on average during those months. Like Belize City, these are somewhat unusual months for a city with a tropical monsoon climate to have its driest months of the year; the driest month for a city with this climate type is the month after the winter solstice, which in Belmopan would be January.
Average monthly temperatures are somewhat constant throughout the course of the year, ranging f
A town is a human settlement. Towns are larger than villages but smaller than cities, though the criteria to distinguish them vary between different parts of the world; the word town shares an origin with the German word Zaun, the Dutch word tuin, the Old Norse tun. The German word Zaun comes closest to the original meaning of the word: a fence of any material. An early borrowing from Celtic *dunom. In English and Dutch, the meaning of the word took on the sense of the space which these fences enclosed. In England, a town was a small community that could not afford or was not allowed to build walls or other larger fortifications, built a palisade or stockade instead. In the Netherlands, this space was a garden, more those of the wealthy, which had a high fence or a wall around them. In Old Norse tun means a place between farmhouses, the word is still used in a similar meaning in modern Norwegian. In Old English and Early and Middle Scots, the words ton, etc. could refer to diverse kinds of settlements from agricultural estates and holdings picking up the Norse sense at one end of the scale, to fortified municipalities.
If there was any distinction between toun and burgh as claimed by some, it did not last in practice as burghs and touns developed. For example, "Edina Burgh" or "Edinburgh" was built around a fort and came to have a defensive wall. In some cases, "town" is an alternative name for "city" or "village". Sometimes, the word "town" is short for "township". In general, today towns can be differentiated from townships, villages, or hamlets on the basis of their economic character, in that most of a town's population will tend to derive their living from manufacturing industry and public services rather than primary industry such as agriculture or related activities. A place's population size is not a reliable determinant of urban character. In many areas of the world, e.g. in India at least until recent times, a large village might contain several times as many people as a small town. In the United Kingdom, there are historical cities; the modern phenomenon of extensive suburban growth, satellite urban development, migration of city dwellers to villages has further complicated the definition of towns, creating communities urban in their economic and cultural characteristics but lacking other characteristics of urban localities.
Some forms of non-rural settlement, such as temporary mining locations, may be non-rural, but have at best a questionable claim to be called a town. Towns exist as distinct governmental units, with defined borders and some or all of the appurtenances of local government. In the United States these are referred to as "incorporated towns". In other cases the town lacks its own governance and is said to be "unincorporated". Note that the existence of an unincorporated town may be set out by other means, e.g. zoning districts. In the case of some planned communities, the town exists in the form of covenants on the properties within the town; the United States Census identifies many census-designated places by the names of unincorporated towns which lie within them. The distinction between a town and a city depends on the approach: a city may be an administrative entity, granted that designation by law, but in informal usage, the term is used to denote an urban locality of a particular size or importance: whereas a medieval city may have possessed as few as 10,000 inhabitants, today some consider an urban place of fewer than 100,000 as a town though there are many designated cities that are much smaller than that.
Australian geographer Thomas Griffith Taylor proposed a classification of towns based on their age and pattern of land use. He identified five types of town: Infantile towns, with no clear zoning Juvenile towns, which have developed an area of shops Adolescent towns, where factories have started to appear Early mature towns, with a separate area of high-class housing Mature towns, with defined industrial and various types of residential area In Afghanistan and cities are known as shār; as the country is an rural society with few larger settlements, with major cities never holding more than a few hundred thousand inhabitants before the 2000s, the lingual tradition of the country does not discriminate between towns and cities. In Albania "qytezë" means town, similar with the word for city. Although there is no official use of the term for any settlement. In Albanian "qytezë" means "small city" or "new city", while in ancient times "small residential center within the walls of a castle"; the center is a population group, larger than a village, smaller than a city.
Though the village is bigger than a hamlet In Australia, towns or "urban centre localities" are understood to be those centers of population not formally declared to be cities and having a population in excess of about 200 people. Centers too small to be called towns are understood to be a township. In addition, some local government entities are styled as towns in Queensland, Western Australia and the Northern Territory, before the statewide amalgamations of th