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Unit 3 Vocabulary Latin America

subregionsmaller areas
isthmusnarrow piece of land that links two larger areas of land
archipelagogroup of islands
escarpmentseries of steep cliffs that drop down to the Atlantic coastal plain
Llanostropical grasslands
Pampasplains in Argentina & Uruguay
tributarya small river that flows into another river
estuaryan area where river currents & ocean tides meet
gasoholfuel produced from sugarcane & gasoline
Tropicsarea between the Tropic of Cancer & Tropic of Capricorn
rain foresta dense stand of trees & other plants that receive high amounts of precipitation
canopyan umbrella-like covering of leaves in the tops of a forest
altitudeheight above sea level
jadea shiny green semiprecious stone
obsidianhard, black, volcanic glass useful in making weapons
hieroglyphicsa form of writing that uses signs and symbols
empirea large territory with many different peoples under one ruler
cash cropcrop produced for export or profit
caudillousually high-ranking military officers or rich men supported by the upper class
communist stategovernment controls the economy and society
migrationthe movement of people
mestizopeople of mixed Native American & European descent
pidgin languagecombining parts of different languages
carnivalthe last day before the Christian holy period of Lent
murallarge paintings on walls
plazapublic squares
vaquerodeveloped tools & methods for raising cattle during Spanish colonial times
maquiladorafactories in which workers assemble parts made in other countries
subsistance farmsmall plots where farmers grow only enough food to feed their families
plantationlarge farms that raise a single crop for sale
migrant workerpeople who travel to find work where extra help is needed to plant or harvest crops
literacy ratepercentage of people who can read and write
command economythe communist government decides how resources are used and what goods & services are produced
remittancemoney sent back home by Haitians who work in other countries
commonwealtha self-governing territory of the United States
selvathe Amazon rain forest
favelaovercrowded slum areas that surround many Brazilian cities
national debtmoney owed by the government
defaultto miss a debt payment to the company or person who lent money
sodium nitratea mineral used in fertilizer & explosives
push pull theorywhy people move from place to place
urbanpertaining to city life
ruralpertaining to country life
immigrationthe movement of people from one place to another
conquistadorspeople who claimed & ruled land in the Americas for the Spanish government in the 1500s
Treaty of Tordesillasagreement between Portugal & Spain dividing Latin America at 50 degrees west longitude
indigenousdescendents of the people who first lived in a region

Owner H.I.T.
Johnson Junior High
Cheyenne, WY

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