Portal:Peru

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THE PERU PORTAL

Flag of the Republic of Peru
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Peru is a country in western South America. It is bordered on the north by Ecuador and Colombia, on the east by Brazil, on the southeast by Bolivia, on the south by Chile, and on the west by the Pacific Ocean. Peruvian territory was home to the Norte Chico civilization, one of the oldest in the world, and to the Inca Empire, the largest state in Pre-Columbian America. The Spanish Empire conquered the country in the 16th century and established a Viceroyalty, which included most of its South American colonies. After achieving independence in 1821, Peru has undergone periods of political unrest and fiscal crisis as well as periods of stability and economic upswing. Peru is a presidential representative democratic republic divided into 25 regions. Its geography varies from the arid plains of the Pacific coast to the peaks of the Andes mountains and the tropical forests of the Amazon Basin. It is a developing country with a medium Human Development Index score and a poverty level around 40%. Its main economic activities include agriculture, fishing, mining, and manufacturing of products such as textiles. The Peruvian population, estimated at 28 million, is multiethnic, including Amerindians, Europeans, Africans and Asians. The main spoken language is Spanish, although a significant number of Peruvians speak Quechua or other native languages.

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Andean Condor (Vultur gryphus)

The Andean Condor (Vultur gryphus) is a species of South American bird in the New World vulture family Cathartidae and is the only member of the genus Vultur. Found in the Andes mountains and adjacent Pacific coasts of western South America, it is the largest flying land bird in the Western Hemisphere.

It is a large black vulture with a ruff of white feathers surrounding the base of the neck and, especially in the male, large white patches on the wings. The head and neck are nearly featherless, and are a dull red color, which may flush and therefore change color in response to the bird's emotional state. In the male, there is a wattle on the neck and a large, dark red comb or caruncle on the crown of the head. Unlike most birds of prey, the male is larger than the female.

The condor is primarily a scavenger, feeding on carrion. It prefers large carcasses, such as those of deer or cattle. It reaches sexual maturity at five or six years of age and roosts at elevations of 3,000 to 5,000 m (10,000 to 16,000 ft), generally on inaccessible rock ledges. One or two eggs are usually laid. It is one of the world’s longest-living birds, with a lifespan of up to 50 years. (more...)

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Alpamayo
Photo credit: RedWolf

Alpamayo (Spanish: Nevado Alpamayo) is one of the most conspicuous peaks in the Cordillera Blanca mountain range of the Peruvian Andes. It is a steep (sixty degrees), almost perfect pyramid of ice, one of a number of peaks that compose the Santa Cruz massif, the northernmost massif of the Cordillera Blanca. Although smaller than many of its neighboring peaks, it is distinguished by its unusual formation and overwhelming beauty. It actually has two sharp summits, North and South, separated by a narrow corniced ridge. (more...)

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The siege of Cuzco according to Felipe Guaman Poma de Ayala

The Siege of Cuzco (May 6, 1536 – March 1537) was the ten month siege of the city of Cuzco by the army of Inca Emperor Manco Inca Yupanqui against a garrison of Spanish conquistadors and Indian auxiliaries led by Hernando Pizarro.

An Spaniard expedition led by Francisco Pizarro had captured the Inca capital of Cuzco on November 15, 1533 after defeating an Inca army headed by general Quisquis. The following month, the conquistadors supported the coronation as Inca emperor of Manco Inca to facilitate their control over the empire. However, real power rested with the Spaniards who frequently humiliated Manco Inca and imprisoned him after an attempted escape in November 1535. After his release in January 1536, Manco Inca managed to leave Cuzco on April 18 promising the Spanish commander, Hernando Pizarro, to bring back a large gold statue when in fact he was already preparing a rebellion. (more...)

In this month

  • July 19, 1991 - The Nuevo Sol was introduced as the official currency to replace the Inti.
  • July 27, 1995 - A new unicameral 90-seat Congress was created.

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Anonymous Cuzco School painting, 17th century

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