Cinta Larga

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Cinta Larga
Total population
1,567 (2010)[1]
Regions with significant populations
(Espigão d'Oeste, State of  Rondônia)[1]
Cinta Larga[2]
traditional tribal religion[1]

The Cinta Larga (or Cinturão Largo) are a people indigenous to the western Amazon Rainforest of Brazil, numbering around 1300. Their name means "broad belt" in Portuguese, referring to large bark sashes the tribe once wore. The tribe is famous for shadowing Theodore Roosevelt's Roosevelt–Rondon Scientific Expedition, making no contact.


The Cinta Larga language is a Mondé language, belonging to the Tupi language family. It is written in the Latin script.[2]


Since the 1920s, the tribe has often come into violent conflict with prospectors entering the region to harvest rubber, timber, gold or diamonds. In the 1960s, this culminated in the "Massacre at Parallel 11" in which rubber prospectors killed many of the Cinta Larga.

Diamond mine controversy[edit]

In 2004 the tribe was responsible for the murders of 29 miners illegally unearthing diamonds in the area. In exchange for an $810,000 community grant from the Brazilian government, the tribe agreed to shut down the mine and refrain from killing intruders. The grant expired in 2007, and the tribe has implied it may reopen the mine.[3]


  1. ^ a b c "Cinta large: Introduction." Instituto Socioambiental: Povos Indígenas no Brasil. Retrieved 31 March 2012
  2. ^ a b "Cinta Larga." Ethnologue. Retrieved 31 March 2012.
  3. ^ Diamonds' Glitter Fades for a Brazilian Tribe New York Times December, 2006

Further reading[edit]