Brazil the Federative Republic of Brazil, is the largest country in both South America and Latin America. At 8.5 million square kilometers and with over 208 million people, Brazil is the world's fifth-largest country by area and the fifth most populous. Its capital is Brasília, its most populated city is São Paulo; the federation is composed of the union of the 26 states, the Federal District, the 5,570 municipalities. It is the largest country to have Portuguese as an official language and the only one in the Americas. Bounded by the Atlantic Ocean on the east, Brazil has a coastline of 7,491 kilometers, it borders all other South American countries except Ecuador and Chile and covers 47.3% of the continent's land area. Its Amazon River basin includes a vast tropical forest, home to diverse wildlife, a variety of ecological systems, extensive natural resources spanning numerous protected habitats; this unique environmental heritage makes Brazil one of 17 megadiverse countries, is the subject of significant global interest and debate regarding deforestation and environmental protection.
Brazil was inhabited by numerous tribal nations prior to the landing in 1500 of explorer Pedro Álvares Cabral, who claimed the area for the Portuguese Empire. Brazil remained a Portuguese colony until 1808, when the capital of the empire was transferred from Lisbon to Rio de Janeiro. In 1815, the colony was elevated to the rank of kingdom upon the formation of the United Kingdom of Portugal and the Algarves. Independence was achieved in 1822 with the creation of the Empire of Brazil, a unitary state governed under a constitutional monarchy and a parliamentary system; the ratification of the first constitution in 1824 led to the formation of a bicameral legislature, now called the National Congress. The country became a presidential republic in 1889 following a military coup d'état. An authoritarian military junta came to power in 1964 and ruled until 1985, after which civilian governance resumed. Brazil's current constitution, formulated in 1988, defines it as a democratic federal republic. Due to its rich culture and history, the country ranks thirteenth in the world by number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Brazil is considered an advanced emerging economy. It has the ninth largest GDP in the world by nominal, eight and PPP measures, it is one of the world's major breadbaskets, being the largest producer of coffee for the last 150 years. It is classified as an upper-middle income economy by the World Bank and a newly industrialized country, with the largest share of global wealth in Latin America. Brazil is a regional power and sometimes considered a great or a middle power in international affairs. On account of its international recognition and influence, the country is subsequently classified as an emerging power and a potential superpower by several analysts. Brazil is a founding member of the United Nations, the G20, BRICS, Union of South American Nations, Organization of American States, Organization of Ibero-American States and the Community of Portuguese Language Countries, it is that the word "Brazil" comes from the Portuguese word for brazilwood, a tree that once grew plentifully along the Brazilian coast.
In Portuguese, brazilwood is called pau-brasil, with the word brasil given the etymology "red like an ember", formed from brasa and the suffix -il. As brazilwood produces a deep red dye, it was valued by the European textile industry and was the earliest commercially exploited product from Brazil. Throughout the 16th century, massive amounts of brazilwood were harvested by indigenous peoples along the Brazilian coast, who sold the timber to European traders in return for assorted European consumer goods; the official Portuguese name of the land, in original Portuguese records, was the "Land of the Holy Cross", but European sailors and merchants called it the "Land of Brazil" because of the brazilwood trade. The popular appellation eclipsed and supplanted the official Portuguese name; some early sailors called it the "Land of Parrots". In the Guarani language, an official language of Paraguay, Brazil is called "Pindorama"; this was the name the indigenous population gave to the region, meaning "land of the palm trees".
Some of the earliest human remains found in the Americas, Luzia Woman, were found in the area of Pedro Leopoldo, Minas Gerais and provide evidence of human habitation going back at least 11,000 years. The earliest pottery found in the Western Hemisphere was excavated in the Amazon basin of Brazil and radiocarbon dated to 8,000 years ago; the pottery was found near Santarém and provides evidence that the tropical forest region supported a complex prehistoric culture. The Marajoara culture flourished on Marajó in the Amazon delta from 800 CE to 1400 CE, developing sophisticated pottery, social stratification, large populations, mound building, complex social formations such as chiefdoms. Around the time of the Portuguese arrival, the territory of current day Brazil had an estimated indigenous population of 7 million people semi-nomadic who subsisted on hunting, fishing and migrant agriculture; the indigenous population of Brazil comprised several large indigenous ethnic groups. The Tupí people were subdivided into the Tupiniquins and Tupinambás, there were many subdivisions of the other gro
Minas Gerais is a state in the north of Southeastern Brazil. It ranks as the second most populous, the third by gross domestic product, the fourth largest by area in the country; the state's capital and largest city, Belo Horizonte, is a major urban and finance center in Latin America, the sixth largest municipality in Brazil, after the cities of São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Salvador and Fortaleza, but its metropolitan area is the third largest in Brazil with just over 5,500,000 inhabitants, after those of São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro. Nine Brazilian presidents were born in the most of any state. With an area of 586,528 square kilometres —larger than Metropolitan France—it is the fourth most extensive state in Brazil; the main producer of coffee and milk in the country, Minas Gerais is known for its heritage of architecture and colonial art in historical cities such as São João del Rei, Ouro Preto, Diamantina and Mariana. In the south, the tourist points are the hydro mineral spas, such as Caxambu, Lambari, São Lourenço, Poços de Caldas, São Thomé das Letras, Monte Verde and the national parks of Caparaó and Canastra.
The landscape of the State is marked by mountains and large areas of fertile lands. In the Serra do Cipó, Sete Lagoas and Lagoa Santa, the caves and waterfalls are the attractions; some of Brazil's most famous caverns are located there. In recent years, the state has emerged as one of the largest economic forces of Brazil, exploring its great economic potential. Two interpretations are given for the origin of the name Minas Gerais, it comes from "Minas dos Matos Gerais", the former name of the colonial province. So a first and more common understanding affirms that the name means "General Mines", with the word Gerais serving as an adjective to the mines, which were themselves spread in several spots around a larger region. Another explanation is that this ignores the two large geographical spaces which conformed the state in its history: the region of the mines, the region of the Gerais; these corresponded to the areas of Sertão which were farther and hard to access from the mining spots. The confusion comes from the fact that the term "Gerais" is taken as an adjective to "Minas" in the first version, although according to this point of view it refers to the region called Gerais.
A further complication is that this is not a well-defined area on the map of the state, but rather a designation to these parts outside the mining spots, more related to the geography of Sertão, more isolated from the state's nucleus. Minas Gerais is in the north of the southeastern subdivision of Brazil, which contains the states of São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro and Espírito Santo, it borders on Bahia, Goiás, Mato Grosso do Sul, the states of São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro and the state of Espírito Santo. It shares a short boundary with the Distrito Federal. Minas Gerais is situated between 14°13'58" and 22°54'00" S latitude and between 39°51'32" and 51°02'35" W longitude, it is larger in area than Metropolitan Spain. Minas Gerais features some of the longest rivers in Brazil, most notably the São Francisco, the Paraná and to a lesser extent, the Rio Doce; the state holds many hydroelectric power plants, including Furnas. Some of the highest peaks in Brazil are in the mountain ranges in the southern part of the state, such as Serra da Mantiqueira and Serra do Cervo, that mark the border between Minas and its neighbors São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro.
The most notable one is the Pico da Bandeira, the third highest mountain in Brazil at 2890 m, standing on the border with Espírito Santo state. The state has huge reserves of iron and sizeable reserves of gold and gemstones, including emerald and aquamarine mines. Emeralds found in this location are comparable to the best Colombia-origin emeralds, are most a bluish-green color; each region of the state has a distinct character, geographically and to a certain extent culturally. The central and eastern area of the state is hilly and rocky, with little vegetation on the mountains. Around Lagoa Santa and Sete Lagoas a typical Karst topography with caves and lakes is found; some of the mountains are entirely iron ore, which led to extensive mining. Recent advances in environmental policy helped to put limits to mining. About 200 kilometres to the east of Belo Horizonte is the second Metropolitan Region of the state, Vale do Aço, which has iron and steel processing companies along the course of the Rio Doce and its tributaries.
Vale do Aço's largest cities are Coronel Fabriciano and Timóteo. Now that mining is restricted large areas of forest are being removed for timber, charcoal and to clear land for cattle ranching; the original forest cover of these inland hills is much fragmented. The city of Governador Valadares is in the limit of this region with the poorer North; the south of Minas Gerais is green, with coffee and milk production. This region is notably cooler than the rest of the state, some locations are subject to temperatures just below the freezing point during the winter; the region is famed for its mineral-water resorts, including the cities of Poços de Caldas, Lambari, São Lourenço and Caxambu. Many industries are located at Pouso Alegre; the southeast of the state, called Zona da Mata was the richest region unti
São João del Rei
São João del Rei spelled São João del Rey or São João del-Rei, is a Brazilian municipality in the state of Minas Gerais. It is a historical city with much 18th-century architecture; the current population is estimated at 85,000 inhabitants. It is located in the drainage basin of the Rio Grande and its terrain is located in the Mantiqueira mountains, it is a centre for the cities in the southeast of Minas Gerais. The municipality contains part of the Ritápolis National Forest; the city was founded by the bandeirantes. The original small village situated in southern Minas Gerais was created as a staging post on the Estrada Real, a trade route from the coast at Paraty to cities in the central region of Minas Gerais such as Ouro Preto and Conselheiro Lafaiete. Huge amounts of gold were found near the city itself. Today, São João del-Rei is a university town; the campus of the Federal University of São João del-Rei and a number of other educational institutions are present in the city. A second medical school is to be established at the University.
The city has many famous religious festivals through the year, most of them preserving the way it was celebrated by the time of the foundation, with baroque music and special celebrations that attracts tourists from all over the world during Holy Week, when the town receives the greatest influx of visitors. Catedral Basílica Nossa Sehora do Pilar, a Minor Basilica, dedicated to Our Lady of the Pillar, the episcopal seat of the Roman Catholic Diocese of São João del Rei Rosário Carmo Mercês e Bonfim São Francisco de Assis Senhor dos Montes Santo Antônio Nostra Senhora da Piedade do Bom Despacho Tiradentes Tancredo Neves Lucas Moreira Neves Bárbara Heliodora Otto Lara Resende São João del Rei was an important station on the Estrada de Ferro Oeste de Minas, a narrow gauge railway characterised by woodburning steam locomotives, the location of a major roundhouse; the station and surrounding facilities have been turned into Brazil's largest railway museum, a tourist railway operates from the station to the well preserved colonial town of Tiradentes.
Guia Turistico e Histórico de São João Del Rei Municipal website Guia del Rei
Estrada de Ferro Oeste de Minas
The Estrada de Ferro Oeste de Minas was a 2 ft 6 in narrow-gauge railway located in the southeastern Brazilian state of Minas Gerais. At its peak the railway's route totalled 775 km. A portion of the railway still operates as a heritage railway, one of the major stations is now Brazil's largest railway museum. 5 ft 3 in railways entered Minas Gerais in the 1870s. Attention turned to the construction of narrow-gauge feeder lines. In 1872 Provincial President Dr. Joaquim Floriano de Godoy signed into law approval for a narrow-gauge railway from the broad-gauge line heading west towards a navigable point on the Rio Grande. A subsequent law in 1877 limited the railway to building only as far as São João del Rei. A company, the Companhia Estrada de Ferro Oeste de Minas, was established in 1878, a decision was made to make the junction with the broad gauge at Sítio; the gauge of 2 ft 6 in was chosen in 1879. The exact reason for the choice of gauge is not known. In any case, construction was begun in June 1879, with the first section opening between Sitio and Barrosso in September 1880.
The line was opened through to São João del Rei on the 28 August 1881 by the Emperor Dom Pedro II. The company sought permission to extend the railway and over the subsequent 15 years built a number of extensions until it reached Paraopeba. Apart from a small number of short branches, the railway was more or less complete by 1894. During this time the line had been reasonably profitable. However, in 1894 the railway broke and following years brought losses. By April 1900 the company was in liquidation, a month and a half strike by employees was only halted when the State government paid their back pay; the entire railway was placed up for auction on the 13 June 1903 and purchased by the Federal Treasury. Several branches were constructed in the period up no extensions after that date. Operation of the line was divested to the State government in 1931. In the meantime, 1,000 mm metre gauge had been adopted as the primary gauge for secondary lines in Brazil. Lines radiating to the west from Belo Horizonte crossed the railway at Divinópolis and Velho Dataipa.
By 1953, control of the railway reverted to the Federal government. During the period 1960 to 1965 most of the railway was either converted to metre gauge. Only the section from Antônio Carlos to Aureliano Mourão was retained; the Antônio Carlos line survived on limestone traffic associated with a cement plant. Passenger traffic declined to a single coach attached to a daily mixed train. However, as the 1970s progressed, the line became more popular with tourists, passenger traffic grew dramatically. In 1983 the closure of the cement plant brought the closure of the majority of the line, with only the section from Tiradentes to São João Del Rei being retained as a tourist line; the main line route was shaped like an "L". The line headed west from the junction at Antonio Carlos, through São João Del Rei, to Aureliano Mourão. From Aureliano Mourao the line headed north though Divinopolis and Pompeu to the terminal at Paraopeba. A branch ran from Aureliano Mourão south-west to the head of navigation on the Rio Grande at Riberao Vermelho.
The sections, with distances and dates of opening and closing, are listed below: Main line – 602 km total length Antônio Carlos – Barroso 49 km 1880-1983 Barroso – Tiradentes 37 km 1881-1983 Tiradentes – São João del Rei 13 km 1881–present. Preserved section. São João Del Rei – Aureliano Mourão 104 km 1883-1983 Aureliano Mourão – Oliveira 69 km 1888-c.1960 metre gauge Oliveira – Divinópolis 84 km 1890-c.1960 metre gauge Divinopolis – São Gonçalo do Pará 27 km 1890-1965 São Gonsalo do Para – Velho Dataipa 55 km 1891-1965 Velho Dataipa – Martinho Campos 72 km 1891-1964 Martinho Campos – Pompéu 36 km 1891-1962 Pompeu – Paraopeba 57 km 1894-1960Branch lines Ghagas Doria – Águas Santas 12 km 1910–1966 Aureliano Mourão – Marcaia 19 km 1887–c.1960 metre gauge Marcaia – Riberao Vermelho 30 km 1888–1966 Riberao Vermelho – Lavras 9 km dual gauge with metre gauge 1908–1965 Goncalves Ferreira – Itapecerica 35 km 1891–c.1960 Goncalves Ferreira – Claudio 26 km 1912–c.1960 Martinho Campos – Pitanguy 5 km 1907–? metre gauged Barbacena – Campolide 10 km c.1923–1965 The first two locomotives purchased by the company were from the Baldwin Locomotive Works, were described as being of the "Montesuma" type.
They had a 4-4-0 wheel arrangement, weighed about 13 tons, plus tender. Further 4-4-0s followed, as the railway grew 4-6-0s and 2-8-0s; some of the larger locomotives were up to about 25 tons in weight. The locomotives used wood as a fuel, however they were converted to oil. In all 58 locomotives were built for the railway. Baldwin built all but five, with three being built by American Locomotive Company, two in the railway's own workshops; these included the last locomotive acquired by the railway, a 2-8-0 constructed in 1920. Records indicate this locomotive was built for about half the cost of an imported locomotive, but performed well. Sixteen locomotives survived to the final closure of the railway, were subsequently preserved, including locomotive number 1; the EFOM met the Rio Grande at Riberao Vermelho, from where the railway ran a steam navigation service down the river for 208 km, as far as Capetina. There were six stations on the river between Riberao Vermelho and Capetinga, a passenger and freight service was operated between 1889 and 1963.
The railway operated a fleet of 6 stern-wheel paddle steamers, together with ba
Joaquim José da Silva Xavier, known as Tiradentes, was a leading member of the Brazilian revolutionary movement known as Inconfidência Mineira, whose aim was full independence from Portuguese colonial power and creation of a Brazilian republic. When the separatists' plot was uncovered by authorities, Tiradentes was arrested and publicly hanged. Since the advent of the Brazilian Republic, Xavier has been considered a national hero of Brazil and patron of the Military Police. Xavier was born to a poor family in Pombal, Ritápolis, near Minas Gerais, he was moved to Vila Rica after his parents' deaths. He was raised by a tutor, a surgeon, his lack of formal education didn't stop him from working in several fields, including dental medicine: "Tiradentes" means "tooth puller", a pejorative denomination adopted during the trial against him. He practiced other varied professions, like miner. Xavier used knowledge he acquired about minerals while working as a miner to enter the public service as a terrain surveyor.
He joined the Minas Gerais Dragoon Regiment, where he was given command of a detachment and sent on missions to cities along "Caminho Novo", a road between Vila Rica and Rio de Janeiro through which gold was sent to the coast to be shipped to Portugal. Over time, witnessing the transit of goods along Caminho Novo, Xavier started to perceive the massive exportation of gold and other valuable resources to the metropolis as exploitation to which Brazilians were subjected, he grew dissatisfied with his low rank and a dismissal from his commanding post. His trips to Rio put him in contact with people who had lived in Europe and brought liberal ideas from there. In 1788, Xavier met José Alvares Maciel, a son of Vila Rica's army's commandant who had just returned from England. Contrasting British industrial progress with Brazilian colonial poverty, the two decided to create a group of freedom aspirants. Led by clerics and other Brazilians with some social presence, like Cláudio Manuel da Costa, Tomás Antônio Gonzaga and Alvarenga Peixoto, the group propagated their ideas among the people.
At the time, Portugal's demand for gold was high. However, productivity of Brazilian mines was declining; the colony was failing to meet the quinto – the quota of gold demanded by the Crown – and pressure from the metropolis rose. This culminated in the creation of the derrama, a confiscatory tribute that, in turn, further stirred seditious sentiments. Influenced by the writings of Jean-Jacques Rousseau and the American Revolution, Xavier joined a number of like-minded citizens in the Inconfidência Mineira, a revolutionary movement, they envisioned an independent Brazilian republic, with São João del Rei as its capital and the conversion of Vila Rica to a university town. The proposed flag for the new republic had a green triangle over a white background, surrounded by the Latin motto "Libertas Quae Sera Tamen". Xavier's plan was to take to the streets of Vila Rica and proclaim a Brazilian Republic on the day of the derrama, in February 1789, when tax was due to Portugal and the sentiment of revolt among Brazilians would be stronger.
Joaquim Silvério dos Reis, one of the conspirators, exposed the plot in exchange for a tax waiver. The governor of Minas Gerais ordered the imprisonment of the rebels. A trial was carried, lasting three years. Xavier was sentenced to death, along with ten other inconfidentes. Queen Maria I of Portugal commuted the sentences of capital punishment to perpetual banishment for all convicts, except those whose activities involved aggravated circumstances; such was the case of Xavier. He was imprisoned in Rio hanged on April 21st, 1792. Afterwards, his body was quartered and the pieces were sent to Vila Rica, to be displayed in places where he used to propagate his liberal ideas. Xavier began to be considered a national hero by the republicans in the late 19th century. After the institution of the Republic, in 1889, the anniversary of his death became a national holiday, his moniker, "Tiradentes", became the namesake of a city in the state of Minas Gerais, of city squares in Belo Horizonte, Curitiba, São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Ouro Preto, as well as of a major avenue in the Dominican Republic.
Zica family, descendants of Tiradentes Maxwell, Kenneth R, Conflicts and Conspiracies: Brazil & Portugal 1750-1808 ISBN 0-521-20053-9 Museu da Inconfidência Tiradentes at about.com Tiradentes at e-Biografias
Virtual International Authority File
The Virtual International Authority File is an international authority file. It is a joint project of several national libraries and operated by the Online Computer Library Center. Discussion about having a common international authority started in the late 1990s. After a series of failed attempts to come up with a unique common authority file, the new idea was to link existing national authorities; this would present all the benefits of a common file without requiring a large investment of time and expense in the process. The project was initiated by the US Library of Congress, the German National Library and the OCLC on August 6, 2003; the Bibliothèque nationale de France joined the project on October 5, 2007. The project transitioned to being a service of the OCLC on April 4, 2012; the aim is to link the national authority files to a single virtual authority file. In this file, identical records from the different data sets are linked together. A VIAF record receives a standard data number, contains the primary "see" and "see also" records from the original records, refers to the original authority records.
The data are available for research and data exchange and sharing. Reciprocal updating uses the Open Archives Initiative Protocol for Metadata Harvesting protocol; the file numbers are being added to Wikipedia biographical articles and are incorporated into Wikidata. VIAF's clustering algorithm is run every month; as more data are added from participating libraries, clusters of authority records may coalesce or split, leading to some fluctuation in the VIAF identifier of certain authority records. Authority control Faceted Application of Subject Terminology Integrated Authority File International Standard Authority Data Number International Standard Name Identifier Wikipedia's authority control template for articles Official website VIAF at OCLC
Southeast Region, Brazil
The Southeast Region of Brazil is composed by the states of Espírito Santo, Minas Gerais, Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo. It is the richest region of the country, responsible for 60% of the Brazilian GDP. São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Minas Gerais are three richest states of Brazil, the top three Brazilian states in terms of GDP; the Southeast of Brazil has the highest GDP per capita among all Brazilian regions. The Southeast region leads the country in population, urban population, population density, industries, airports, highways, schools and many other areas. São Paulo Heart of the largest continued remnant of the Brazilian Atlantic Forest, the Ribeira Valley is a Natural Heritage of Humanity, granted heritage as a Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO. One of the biggest attractions is the biologic and ecosystems diversity, where 400 species of birds, amphibians and mammals live; the Alto Ribeira Tourist State Park is paradise for ecotourists, for its enormous diversity in geologic formations, among grottos and caves and waterfalls.
There are 454 caves registered by the Brazilian Society of Speleology in the State of São Paulo, all at the Ribeira Valley. The 280 caves located at PETAR represent the biggest concentration of caves in Brazil. Minas Gerais The landscape of the State is marked by mountains and caverns. In the Serra do Cipó, Sete Lagoas and Lagoa Santa, the caves and waterfalls. Minas Gerais is the source of some of the biggest rivers in Brazil, most notably the São Francisco, the Paraná and to a lesser extent, the Rio Doce; the state holds many hydroelectric power plants, including Furnas dam. Some of the highest peaks in Brazil are in the mountain ranges in the southern part of the state, such as Serra da Mantiqueira and Serra do Cervo, that mark the border between Minas and its neighbors São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro; the most notable one is the Pico da Bandeira, the third highest mountain in Brazil at 2890 m, standing on the border with Espírito Santo state. The state has huge reserves of iron and sizeable reserves of gold and gemstones, including emerald and aquamarine mines.
Rio de Janeiro The state is part of the Mata Atlântica biome, its topography comprises both mountains and plains, located between the Mantiqueira Mountains and the Atlantic Ocean. Its coast is carved by the bays of Guanabara and Ilha Grande. There are prominent slopes near the ocean, featuring diverse environments, such as restinga vegetation, bays and tropical forests. Rio de Janeiro is one of the smallest in Brazil, it has, the third longest coastline in the country, extending 635 kilometers. Espírito Santo With 46.180 square kilometers, it is about the size of Estonia, or half the size of Portugal, has a variety of habitats including coastal plains, mountain forest and many others. The main river in the state is the Doce. Other important river basins include the Santa Maria River Basin, the northern branch of rivers which join the sea at Vitoria, Jucu River Basin which flows into the sea at the same place, but corresponds to the southern branch. Espírito Santo's climate is tropical with dry winters and rainy summers.
North of Doce River it's drier and hot. In the mountainous regions in the south and south west of the state, the tropical climate is influenced by altitude, the average temperatures are colder; the state can be divided into two areas: the low lying coastline and the highland area known as Serra, part of the larger Serra do Caparaó, the Caparaó Mountain Range. In the map to the right it is in the gray area in the extreme southwest of the state, is shared with Minas Gerais. São Paulo state is responsible for one-third of Brazilian GDP; the state's GDP consists of 550 billion dollars, making it the second biggest economy of South America after Brazil and the biggest subdivision economy in Latin America. Its economy is based on machinery, the automobile and aviation industries, financial companies, textiles, orange growing, sugar cane and coffee production. Minas Gerais is a growing state. Vehicles: 36,030,943. Portuguese is the official national language, thus the primary language taught in schools.
English and Spanish are part of the official high school curriculum. French is widely studied. Universidade de São Paulo. São Paulo São Paulo-Guarulhos International Airport connects Brazil to 28 countries and is visited every day by nearly 100 thousand people. With capacity to serve 15 million passengers a year, in two terminals, the airport handles 12 million users. Construction of a third passenger terminal is pending, to raise yearly capacity to 29 million passengers; the project, in the tendering phase, is part of the