Mato Grosso is one of the states of Brazil, the third-largest by area, located in the western part of the country. Neighboring states are Rondônia, Pará, Goiás and Mato Grosso do Sul; the nation of Bolivia is located to the southwest. A state with a flat landscape, alternating great chapadas and plain areas, Mato Grosso has three different ecosystems: Cerrado and the Amazon Rainforest; the vegetation of the open pasture covers 40% of the state. The Chapada dos Guimarães National Park, with caves, grottoes and waterfalls, is one of its tourist attractions. In the north is the Amazonian forest, with a biodiversity covering half of the state. Much of this has been disrupted and cleared for logging, agricultural purposes, pastures; the Xingu National Park and the Araguaia River are in Mato Grosso. Further south, the Pantanal, the world's largest wetland, is the habitat for nearly one thousand species of animals, many aquatic birds. Located in the Mato Grosso is the Chapada dos Guimarães, a unique environment of sandstone mountains that have eroded into amazingly varied terrain.
The terrain of the Mato Grosso is varied and includes cliffs and waterfalls. The biologically rich Pantanal, one of the world's largest wetland/prairie ecosystems, is located within this state. Much environmental degradation has occurred to the Pantanal since the late 20th century because of development, efforts to contain or slow it have had limited success; the Pantanal has a habitat similar to that of the Everglades in Florida in the United States, although the Pantanal is on a much larger scale. See also: History of Mato GrossoIn 1977, the state was split into two halves, with Mato Grosso do Sul being organized as a new state; the Bororo Indians live in the Mato Grosso area. As late as 1880, soldiers patrolled lands on the outskirts of Cuiabá, Mato Grosso's capital and largest city, to protect settlers from Bororo raids. By the end of the 19th century, although reduced by disease and by warfare with explorers, slave traders, prospectors and other indigenous groups, as many as five to ten thousand Bororo continued to occupy central and eastern Mato Grosso, as well as western Goiás.
The southwestern part of this state was ceded by Brazil to Bolivia in exchange for Acre, according to the Treaty of Petrópolis in 1903. This remote area attracted expeditions of exploration in the early 20th century that sought to find lost civilizations. A notable example were efforts by British Captain Percy Fawcett. In addition, theorists of Hollow Earth speculated that this region had sites of access to the interior of the earth and its settlements. Mato Grosso had a high rate of population growth in the 20th century due to timber and agricultural development; the state as a whole still has one of the lowest population densities of any Brazilian state. According to the IBGE of 2018, 3,441,998 people resided in the state; the population density was 3.8 inh./km². Urbanization: 76.6%. Ethnically, the state includes a high proportion of caboclos, as do other areas of interior Brazil; the last PNAD census revealed the following numbers: 1,532,000 Brown people. Agriculture is the largest component of GDP at 40.8%, followed by the service sector at 40.2%.
The industrial sector represents 19% of GDP. Mato Grosso exports: soybeans 83%, wood 5.6%, meats 4.8%, cotton 3.3%. The state's share of the Brazilian economy is 1.8%. Vehicles: 1,614,797. Portuguese is the official national language, as well as the primary language taught in schools; however and Spanish are part of the official high school curriculum. More than 58 universities are located in state of Mato Grosso. Cuiabá is home to the following universities: Federal University of Mato Grosso; the local culture is rich, due to the influences of and encounters with various cultures, such as indigenous peoples, colonial Spanish and other European settlers, Africans enslaved and transported there in the Atlantic slave trade by the Portuguese, other Europeans. Two long periods of isolation contributed to its developing along different lines than coastal areas of Brazil. Recent immigration has brought many urban influences to the state. Cuiabá has a rich cuisine influenced by natives, they have maintained traditional dances and music.
Dance and music were traditionally connected to the worship of Catholic saints and their festivals, Saint Benedict, being one of the favorite. The four-day period before Lent leading up to Ash Wednesday, known as Carnival is well celebrated; as with every state in Brazil, Mato Grosso celebrates this holiday in a typical fashion - including parades and dance - with wide participation. Fishing in the Teles Pires, São Benedito and Azul rivers is productive all year long. Bird watching: with the more than 570 species of catalogued birds and new species being discovered every year, the region of Alta Floresta and Azul River Basin receives constant visits from famous ornithologists and bird watchers; the largest sandstone cavern in Brazil, Aroe Jari, extends nearly 1,550 meters and several pr
Treaty of Tordesillas
The Treaty of Tordesillas, signed at Tordesillas in Spain on June 7, 1494, authenticated at Setúbal, divided the newly discovered lands outside Europe between the Portuguese Empire and the Crown of Castile, along a meridian 370 leagues west of the Cape Verde islands, off the west coast of Africa. This line of demarcation was about halfway between the Cape Verde islands and the islands entered by Christopher Columbus on his first voyage, named in the treaty as Cipangu and Antilia; the lands to the east would belong to the lands to the west to Castile. The treaty was signed by Spain, 2 July 1494, by Portugal, 5 September 1494; the other side of the world was divided a few decades by the Treaty of Zaragoza, signed on 22 April 1529, which specified the antimeridian to the line of demarcation specified in the Treaty of Tordesillas. Originals of both treaties are kept at the General Archive of the Indies in Spain and at the Torre do Tombo National Archive in Portugal; this treaty would be observed well by Spain and Portugal, despite considerable ignorance as to the geography of the New World.
Those countries ignored the treaty those that became Protestant after the Protestant Reformation. The treaty was included by UNESCO in 2007 in its Memory of the World Programme; the Treaty of Tordesillas was intended to solve the dispute, created following the return of Christopher Columbus and his crew, who had sailed for the Crown of Castile. On his way back to Spain he first reached Lisbon, in Portugal. There he asked for another meeting with King John II to show him the newly discovered lands. After learning of the Castilian-sponsored voyage, the Portuguese King sent a threatening letter to the Catholic Monarchs stating that by the Treaty of Alcáçovas signed in 1479 and confirmed in 1481 with the papal bull Æterni regis, that granted all lands south of the Canary Islands to Portugal, all of the lands discovered by Columbus belonged, in fact, to Portugal; the Portuguese King stated that he was making arrangements for a fleet to depart shortly and take possession of the new lands. After reading the letter the Catholic Monarchs knew they did not have any military power in the Atlantic to match the Portuguese, so they pursued a diplomatic way out.
On 4 May 1493 Pope Alexander VI, an Aragonese from Valencia by birth, decreed in the bull Inter caetera that all lands west of a pole-to-pole line 100 leagues west of any of the islands of the Azores or the Cape Verde Islands should belong to Castile, although territory under Catholic rule as of Christmas 1492 would remain untouched. The bull did not mention Portugal or its lands, so Portugal could not claim newly discovered lands if they were east of the line. Another bull, Dudum siquidem, entitled Extension of the Apostolic Grant and Donation of the Indies and dated 25 September 1493, gave all mainlands and islands, "at one time or still belonging to India" to Spain if east of the line; the Portuguese King John II was not pleased with that arrangement, feeling that it gave him far too little land—it prevented him from possessing India, his near term goal. By 1493 Portuguese explorers had reached the southern tip of the Cape of Good Hope; the Portuguese were unlikely to go to war over the islands encountered by Columbus, but the explicit mention of India was a major issue.
As the Pope had not made changes, the Portuguese king opened direct negotiations with the Catholic Monarchs, King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella, to move the line to the west and allow him to claim newly discovered lands east of the line. In the bargain, John accepted Inter caetera as the starting point of discussion with Ferdinand and Isabella, but had the boundary line moved 270 leagues west, protecting the Portuguese route down the coast of Africa and giving the Portuguese rights to lands that now constitute the Eastern quarter of Brazil; as one scholar assessed the results, "both sides must have known that so vague a boundary could not be fixed, each thought that the other was deceived, diplomatic triumph for Portugal, confirming to the Portuguese not only the true route to India, but most of the South Atlantic". The treaty countered the bulls of Alexander VI but was subsequently sanctioned by Pope Julius II by means of the bull Ea quae pro bono pacis of 24 January 1506. Though the treaty was negotiated without consulting the Pope, a few sources call the resulting line the "Papal Line of Demarcation".
Little of the newly divided area had been seen by Europeans, as it was only divided via the treaty. Castile gained lands including most of the Americas; the easternmost part of current Brazil was granted to Portugal when in 1500 Pedro Álvares Cabral landed there while he was en route to India. Some historians contend that the Portuguese knew of the South American bulge that makes up most of Brazil before this time, so his landing in Brazil was not an accident. One scholar points to Cabral's landing on the Brazilian coast 12 degrees farther south than the expected Cape São Roque, such that "the likelihood of making such a landfall as a result of freak weather or navigational error was remote; the line was not enforced—the Spanish did not resist the Portuguese expansion of Brazil across the meridian. However, t
C. R. Boxer
Charles Ralph Boxer FBA was a historian of Dutch and Portuguese maritime and colonial history. In Hong Kong he was the chief spy of the British army intelligence in the tumultuous years leading up to World War II, but it is his lead role in one of the most flamboyantly public love stories of the 1940s, his romance with Emily Hahn and one of The New Yorker's most prolific contributors, that accounts for most of this fame. Charles Ralph Boxer was born on the Isle of Wight in 1904. On his father's side, he was a descendant of an illustrious British family that had served in command positions in every British war since the French Revolution. Boxer's father Colonel Hugh Edward Richard Boxer served in the Lincolnshire Regiment and had been killed at the Second Battle of Ypres in 1915. While his father's family may have been of Huguenot origin, the family of his mother, Jane Patterson, hailed from Scotland, her forebears became successful pastoralists in Australia. Charles Boxer was educated at Wellington College and the Royal Military College, Boxer was gazetted a second lieutenant in the Lincolnshire Regiment in 1923 and served in that regiment for twenty-four years until 1947.
He served in Northern Ireland following language and intelligence training, Charles Boxer was seconded to the Imperial Japanese Army in 1930 for three years as part of an exchange of Japanese and English officers. He was assigned to the 38th Infantry Regiment based at Nara Prefecture, Japan. At the same time, he was assigned to the non-commissioned officers school at Toyohashi, his housekeeper concubine was a northerner from Hakodate on the island of Hokkaido. In 1933, he qualified as an official interpreter in the Japanese language, it was in Japan that he expanded his interest in Portuguese imperial history, concentrating his attention on the first disastrous experiment of European incursion into Japan and its catastrophic ending when Tokugawa closed off the country to outside influence in the 1640s. The Japanese crucified hundreds of Christian missionaries and converts and for good measure executed a delegation of anxious envoys sent out from the Portuguese enclave of Macau to make it clear to the European outsiders that they meant what they said.
This was the subject of Boxer's book The Christian Century of Japan. Boxer took up the traditional Japanese sport of kendo, becoming one of only four British nationals recorded to have done this up until that time. Joining the regimental team he became proficient in the art to the level of being awarded the rank of nidan, he would use his skill as a method of subterfuge in his profession as a spy when he was sent to Hong Kong in 1936. On visits to the occupied territories he would have a kendo bout, drink scotch and pump the various Japanese officers and officials that he was socialising with for information in the true nature of a secret service agent. Boxer returned to London for a two-year posting from 1935–36 to the military intelligence section of the War Office. Posted to Hong Kong in 1936, he served as a General Staff Officer 3rd grade with British troops in China at Hong Kong, doing intelligence work. Between 1937 and 1941, promoted from captain to major, became one of the key members of the Far East Combined Bureau, a British intelligence organisation that extended from Shanghai to Singapore.
By 1940, most of its Hong Kong office had been transferred to Singapore, leaving Boxer as the army's chief intelligence officer in the colony. In 1940, he was advanced to General Staff Officer 2nd grade. Wounded in action during the Japanese attack on Hong Kong on 8 December 1941, he was taken by the Japanese as a prisoner of war and remained in captivity until 1945. After his release, Boxer returned to Japan in February 1946 as a member of the British Far Eastern Commission, a post that he served until the next year. During his military career, Boxer published 86 publications on Far Eastern history with a particular focus on the 16th and 17th centuries; as a major in the British Army, Boxer had resigned from the service in 1947, when King's College London offered him its ″Camões Chair of Portuguese″, a post founded and co-funded by Lisbon, and, at the time, the only such chair in the English-speaking world. During this period, the School of Oriental and African Studies of the University of London appointed him as its first Professor of the History of the Far East, serving in that post for two years from 1951 to 1953.
On retiring from the University of London in 1967, Boxer took up a visiting professorship at Indiana University, where he served as an advisor to the Lilly Library located on its campus in Bloomington, Indiana. From 1969 to 1972, Boxer held a personal chair in the history of European Overseas Expansion at Yale University. Charles R. Boxer died at the age of 96. Kenneth Maxwell wrote after his death: ″To generations of historians of the Portuguese-speaking world C. R. Boxer was a true colossus, his original and path-breaking books and articles flowed forth with seeming effortlessness. Boxer’s works covered the history of early European intrusions into Japan and China during the sixteenth century, splendid accounts of the opulence and decline of Goa, seat of Portugal's empire in Asia. In over 350 publications, all of the highest order of scholarship, Boxer wrote on sixteenth-century naval warfare in the Persian Gulf, the tribulations of the maritime trading route between Europe and Asia, a sparkling overview of Brazil during the eighteenth century in the age of gold strikes and frontier expansion, magnificent syntheses of both Dutch and Portuguese colonial history, as well as many pioneering comparative studies of local mun
Ouro Preto Vila Rica, is a city in the state of Minas Gerais, Brazil, a former colonial mining town located in the Serra do Espinhaço mountains and designated a World Heritage site by UNESCO because of its outstanding Baroque Portuguese colonial architecture. Ouro Preto is located in one of the main areas of the Brazilian Gold Rush. 800 tons of gold were sent to Portugal in the eighteenth century, not to mention what was circulated in an illegal manner, nor what remained in the colony, such as gold used in the ornamentation of the churches. The municipality became the most populous city of Latin America, counting on about 40 thousand people in 1730 and, decades after, 80 thousand. At that time, the population of New York was less than half of that number of inhabitants and the population of São Paulo did not surpass 8 thousand. Population: Data from the 2010 Census Resident population: 70,227 Urban area: 56,293 Rural area: 9,985 Area of the municipality: 1,245 km² Temperature: between 6 and 28 degrees Celsius.
In June and July the temperature can reach -2 degrees Celsius. Average elevation: 1,116 m; the highest point is Pico de Itacolomi with 1,722 meters. The city has twelve districts: Amarantina, Antônio Pereira, Cachoeira do Campo, Engenheiro Correia, Lavras Novas, Miguel Burnier, Santa Rita, Santo Antônio do Leite, Santo Antônio do Salto, São Bartolomeu and Rodrigo Silva. Rivers: sources for the Velhas, Gualaxo do Norte, Gualaxo do Sul, Mainart e Ribeirão Funil. Per Capita Income: R$23,622 HDI: 0.788 The city is linked by unlit winding roads to highways for: Belo Horizonte 100 km Rio de Janeiro 475 km São Paulo 675 km Brasília 840 kmBordering municipalities are: North: Itabirito and Santa Bárbara South: Ouro Branco, Catas Altas da Noruega and Itaverava East: Mariana West: Belo Vale and Congonhas Located at 1,179 m above sea level, Ouro Preto has a subtropical highland climate, with warm and humid summers and mild, dry winters. Frost occur in June and July. There is a report of snow in the city in the year of 1843.
Founded at the end of the 17th century, Ouro Preto was called Vila Rica, or "rich village", the focal point of the gold rush and Brazil's golden age in the 18th century under Portuguese rule. The city centre contains well-preserved Portuguese colonial architecture, with few signs of modern urban development. New construction must keep with the city's historical aesthetic. 18th- and 19th-century churches decorated with gold and the sculptured works of Aleijadinho make Ouro Preto a tourist destination. The tremendous wealth from gold mining in the 18th century created a city which attracted the intelligentsia of Europe. Philosophy and art flourished, evidence of a baroque revival called the "Barroco Mineiro" is illustrated in architecture as well as by sculptors such as Aleijadinho, painters such as Mestre Athayde, composers such as Lobo de Mesquita, poets such as Tomás António Gonzaga. At that time, Vila Rica was the largest city in Brazil, with 100,000 inhabitants. In 1789, Ouro Preto became the birthplace of the Inconfidência Mineira, a failed attempt to gain independence from Portugal.
The leading figure, was hanged as a threat to any future revolutionaries. In 1876, the Escola de Minas was created; this school established the technological foundation for several of the mineral discoveries in Brazil. Ouro Preto was capital of Minas Gerais from 1720 until 1897, when the needs of government outgrew this town in the valley; the state government was moved to the planned city of Belo Horizonte. Although Ouro Preto now relies on the tourism industry for part of its economy, there are important metallurgic and mining industries located in town, such as Novelis Alcan, the most important aluminum factory in the country, the Companhia Vale do Rio Doce, others. Main economic activities are tourism, transformation industries, mineral riches such as deposits of iron, manganese and marble. Minerals of note are: gold, dolomite, pyrite, muscovite and imperial topaz; the imperial topaz is a stone only found in Ouro Preto. Soapstone handicraft items are a popular souvenir among tourists, can be found in many shops in the town centre and street fairs.
Jewelry made of local precious and semi-precious gemstones can be found in abundance for sale. Ouro Preto is a university town with an intense student life; the Universidade Federal de Ouro Preto has 10,000 students in the city. Many of them live in communal houses that are somewhat similar to fraternity houses as found in North American colleges; these communal or shared houses are called repúblicas, of which 66 belong to the university, called repúblicas federais, 250 are owned. The repúblicas system of Ouro Preto is unique in Brazil. No other university city in the country has the same characteristics of the student lodgings found there, it shares traits with the repúblicas of the Portuguese University of Coimbra, where the tradition originated. Before universities were founded in Brazil, Coimbra was where most of the rich students who could afford an overseas education went to; each república has its own different history. There are repúblicas in which the freshmen known as "bixos", have to undergo a hazing period, called batalha, before being accepted permanently as residents of the houses.
The final choice
Mato Grosso do Sul
Mato Grosso do Sul is one of the Midwestern states of Brazil. Its total area of 357,125 square kilometers, or 137,891 square miles, is the same size as Germany. Neighboring Brazilian states are Mato Grosso, Goiás, Minas Gerais, São Paulo and Paraná, it borders the countries of Paraguay, to the southwest, Bolivia, to the west. The economy of the state is based on agriculture and cattle-raising. Crossed in the south by the Tropic of Capricorn, Mato Grosso do Sul has a warm, sometimes hot, humid climate, is crossed by numerous tributaries of the Paraná River; the state is known for its natural environment, is a destination for domestic and international tourism. The Pantanal lowlands cover 12 municipalities and presents a variety of flora and fauna, with forests, natural sand banks, open pasture and bushes; the city Bonito, in the mountain of Bodoquena, has prehistoric caves, natural rivers, swimming pools and the Blue Lake cave. The name Mato Grosso do Sul is Portuguese for "Thick Bushes of the South".
It is not uncommon for people to mistakenly refer to Mato Grosso do Sul as "Mato Grosso". Other names that were proposed, at the time of the split and afterwards, include "Pantanal" and "Maracaju". Mato Grosso do Sul has humid tropical climates; the average annual rainfall is 1471.1 mm. January is the warmest month, with minimum of 24 °C and more rain; the "cerrado" landscape is characterized by extensive savanna formations crossed by gallery forests and stream valleys. Cerrado includes various types of vegetation. Humid fields and "buriti" palm paths are found. Alpine pastures occur at mesophytic forests on more fertile soils; the "cerrado" trees have characteristic twisted trunks covered by a thick bark, leaves which are broad and rigid. Many herbaceous plants have extensive roots to store water and nutrients; the plant's thick bark and roots serve as adaptations for the periodic fires which sweep the cerrado landscape. The adaptations protect the plants from destruction and make them capable of sprouting again after the fire.
The state is located in western Brazil, in a region occupied by the inland marshes of the Pantanal. The highest elevation is the 1,065 m high Morro Grande; the first peoples or indigenous peoples of Mato Grosso do Sul occupying the Nhande Ru Marangatu tropical rainforested area, are the Guarani-Kaiowá, first contacted by non-indigenous peoples in the 1800s. In October 11, 1977, the state was created by dividing the state of Mato Grosso, its status as a state went into full effect two years on January 1, 1979. The new state incorporated the former territory of Ponta Porã and the northern part of the former territory of Iguaçu. According to the IBGE of 2008, there were 2,372,000 people residing in the state; the population density was 6.4 hab./km². Urbanization: 84.7%. In the Cerrado areas in the south and east, there is a predominance of Southern Brazilian farmers of Spanish, Portuguese and Slavic descent. According to an autosomal DNA study from 2008, the ancestral composition of Mato Grosso do Sul is 73,60% European, 13,90% African and 12,40% Native American.
According to a 2013 DNA study, the ancestral composition of Mato Grosso do Sul is: 58.8% European, 25.9% African and 15.3% Amerindian ancestries, respectively. The service sector is the largest component of GDP at 46.1%, followed by the industrial sector at 22.7%. Agriculture represents 31.2%, of GDP. Mato Grosso do Sul exports: soybean 34.9%, pork and chicken 20.9%, beef 13.7%, ores 8%, leather 7.4%, timber 5.1%. Share of the Brazilian economy: 1%. Vehicles: 835,259, but English and Spanish are part of the official high school curriculum. Brazil a country of all, in the Center-West Region does not have structure to have large tourist port much less is well positioned. There are more than 44 universities in whole state of Mato Grosso do Sul. Universidade Federal de Mato Grosso do Sul Universidade Estadual de Mato Grosso do Sul Universidade Federal da Grande Dourados Universidade Católica Dom Bosco Universidade para o Desenvolvimento do Estado e da Região do Pantanal It's a film festival held annually in the months of January and February and has been arranged since 2004.
It focuses on the independent cinema presenting foreign films as well. It presents regional films and short films; as of 2011 the festival is suspended. "Festival de Inverno de Bonito" (Boni
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
Colonial Brazil comprises the period from 1500, with the arrival of the Portuguese, until 1815, when Brazil was elevated to a kingdom in union with Portugal as the United Kingdom of Portugal and the Algarves. During the early 300 years of Brazilian colonial history, the economic exploitation of the territory was based first on brazilwood extraction, which gave the territory its name. Slaves those brought from Africa, provided most of the work force of the Brazilian export economy after a brief period of Indian slavery to cut brazilwood. In contrast to the neighboring Spanish possessions, which had several viceroyalties with jurisdiction over New Spain and Peru, in the eighteenth century expanded to viceroyalties of Rio de la Plata and New Granada, the Portuguese colony of Brazil was settled in the coastal area by the Portuguese and a large black slave population working sugar plantations and mines; the boom and bust economic cycles were linked to export products. Brazil's sugar age, with the development of plantation slavery, merchants serving as middle men between production sites, Brazilian ports, Europe was undermined by the growth of the sugar industry in the Caribbean on islands that European powers seized from Spain.
Gold and diamonds were mined in southern Brazil through the end of the colonial era. Brazilian cities were port cities and the colonial administrative capital was moved several times in response to the rise and fall of export products' importance. Unlike Spanish America, which fragmented into many republics upon independence, Brazil remained a single administrative unit under a monarch, giving rise to the largest country in Latin America. Just as European Spanish and Roman Catholicism were a core source of cohesion among Spain's vast and multi-ethnic territories, Brazilian society was united by the Portuguese language and Roman Catholic faith; as the only Lusophone polity in the Western Hemisphere, the Portuguese language was important to Brazilian identity. Portugal and Spain pioneered the European charting of sea routes that were the first and only channels of interaction between all of the world's continents, thus beginning the process of globalization. In addition to the imperial and economic undertaking of discovery and colonization of lands distant from Europe, these years were filled with pronounced advancements in cartography and navigational instruments, of which the Portuguese and Spanish explorers took advantage.
In 1494, the two kingdoms of the Iberian Peninsula divided the New World between them, in 1500 navigator Pedro Álvares Cabral landed in what is now Brazil and laid claim to it in the name of King Manuel I of Portugal. The Portuguese identified brazilwood as a valuable red dye and an exploitable product, attempted to force indigenous groups in Brazil to cut the trees. Portuguese seafarers in the early fifteenth century began to expand from a small area of the Iberian Peninsula, to seizing the Muslim fortress of Ceuta in North Africa, its maritime exploration proceeded down the coast of West Africa and across the Indian Ocean to the south Asian subcontinent, as well as the Atlantic islands off the coast of Africa on the way. They sought sources of gold and African slaves, high value goods in the African trade; the Portuguese set up fortified trading "factories", whereby permanent small commercial settlements anchored trade in a region. The initial costs of setting up these commercial posts was borne by private investors, who in turn received hereditary titles and commercial advantages.
From the Portuguese Crown's point of view, its realm was expanded with little cost to itself. On the Atlantic islands of the Azores, Sāo Tomé, the Portuguese began plantation production of sugarcane using forced labor, a precedent for Brazil's sugar production in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries; the Portuguese "discovery" of Brazil was preceded by a series of treaties between the kings of Portugal and Castile, following Portuguese sailings down the coast of Africa to India and the voyages to the Caribbean of the Genoese mariner sailing for Castile, Christopher Columbus. The most decisive of these treaties was the Treaty of Tordesillas, signed in 1494, which created the Tordesillas Meridian, dividing the world between the two kingdoms. All land discovered or to be discovered east of that meridian was to be the property of Portugal, everything to the west of it went to Spain; the Tordesillas Meridian divided South America into two parts, leaving a large chunk of land to be exploited by the Spaniards.
The Treaty of Tordesillas was arguably the most decisive event in all Brazilian history, since it determined that part of South America would be settled by Portugal instead of Spain. The present extent of Brazil's coastline is exactly that defined by the Treaty of Madrid, approved in 1750. On April 22, 1500, during the reign of King Manuel I, a fleet led by navigator Pedro Álvares Cabral landed in Brazil and took possession of the land in the name of the king. Although it is debated whether previous Portuguese explorers had been in Brazil, this date is and politically accepted as the day of the discovery of Brazil by Europeans. Álvares Cabral was leading a large fleet of 13 ships and more than 1000 men following Vasco da Gama's way to India, around Africa. The place where Álvares Cabral arrived is now known in Northeastern Brazil. After the voyage of Álvares Cabral, the Portuguese concentrated their efforts on the lucrative possessions in Africa and India