Introduction

The Peru Portal
The Peru Portal
Republic of Peru
República del Perú (Spanish)
CapitalLima
12°2.6′S 77°1.7′W / 12.0433°S 77.0283°W / -12.0433; -77.0283
ISO 3166 codePE

Peru, officially the Republic of Peru, is a country in western South America. It is bordered in the north by Ecuador and Colombia, in the east by Brazil, in the southeast by Bolivia, in the south by Chile, and in the south and west by the Pacific Ocean. Peru is a megadiverse country with habitats ranging from the arid plains of the Pacific coastal region in the west to the peaks of the Andes mountains extending from the north to the southeast of the country to the tropical Amazon basin rainforest in the east with the Amazon River. Peru has a population of over 32 million, and its capital and largest city is Lima. At 1,285,216 km2 (496,225 sq mi), Peru is the 19th largest country in the world, and the third largest in South America.

Peruvian territory was home to several cultures during the ancient and medieval periods, and has one of the longest histories of civilization of any country, tracing its heritage back to the 10th millennium BCE. Notable pre-colonial cultures and civilizations include the Caral–Supe civilization (the earliest civilization in the Americas and considered one of the cradles of civilization), the Nazca culture, the Wari and Tiwanaku empires, the Kingdom of Cusco, and the Inca Empire, the largest known state in the pre-Columbian Americas. The Spanish Empire conquered the region in the 16th century and Charles V established a viceroyalty with the official name of the Kingdom of Peru that encompassed most of its South American territories, with its capital in Lima. Higher education started in the Americas with the official establishment of the National University of San Marcos in Lima in 1551.

Peru's population includes Mestizos, Amerindians, Europeans, Africans and Asians. The main spoken language is Spanish, although a significant number of Peruvians speak Quechuan languages, Aymara, or other Indigenous languages. This mixture of cultural traditions has resulted in a wide diversity of expressions in fields such as art, cuisine, literature, and music. (Full article...)

Entries here consist of Good and Featured articles, which meet a core set of high editorial standards.

Juan Bielovucic, c. 1913
Juan Bielovucic (30 July 1889 – 14 January 1949) was a Peruvian aviator who set several speed and altitude aviation records in 1910–13. He was also the first person to complete a successful powered aircraft crossing of the Alps in 1913, following a 1910 attempt by his friend Jorge Chávez that ended in a fatal crash landing. He established the first aviation school in South America in Lima, Peru. Bielovucic became a colonel of the Peruvian Aviation Corps (PAC) in 1911, joined the Service Aéronautique of the French Army as a volunteer in 1914 and earned the Legion of Honour for his service in World War I. He retired from active aviation in 1920 and returned to Peru where he became the lieutenant commander of the PAC Reserve. He was also active with the French Resistance during World War II. In Croatia, he is regarded as the first Croatian aviator. (Full article...)

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Ica city
Ica city
Photo credit: Oliver Etchebarne

The city of Ica is the capital of the Ica Region in southern Peru. It was founded in 1563 by Spanish conquistador Gerónimo Luis de Cabrera. According to the 2005 census, it had a population of over 200,000, however, the city suffered extensive damage and loss of life during the 2007 Peru earthquake. (more...)

Selected battle

Naval Combat of Iquique - The sinking of the Esmeralda

The Naval Battle of Iquique was a confrontation occurred on May 21, 1879; during the naval stage of the War of the Pacific, a conflict between Chile and the alliance between Peru and Bolivia. This battle took place on the shores of the Peruvian port of Iquique, where the Peruvian ironclad Huáscar, commanded by the Captain Miguel Grau Seminario sunk the Esmeralda, an old Chilean wooden corvette led by Captain Arturo Prat Chacón; after four hours of combat. This event has become one of the most emblematic battles of this war due to the glorification of the fallen Chilean captain Prat and Peruvian Captain Miguel Grau's noble gesture of saving the enemy crew and rescuing Prat's body. (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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Map of the disputed territories from 1916 onwards

The Ecuadorian–Peruvian territorial dispute was a territorial dispute between Ecuador and Peru, which, until 1928, also included Colombia. The dispute had its origins on each country's interpretation of what Real Cedulas Spain used to precisely define its colonial territories in the Americas. After independence, all of Spain's colonial territories signed and agreed to proclaim their limits in the basis of the principle of uti possidetis juris, which regarded the Spanish borders of 1810 as the borders of the new republics. However, conflicting claims and disagreements between the newly formed countries eventually escalated to the point of armed conflicts on several occasions.

The dispute de jure had come to an end in the aftermath of the Ecuadorian–Peruvian War with the signing of the Rio de Janeiro Protocol on January 29, 1942. However, this treaty was also questioned, and the two countries went to war on two more occasions: the Paquisha War in 1981, and the Cenepa War in 1995. Tensions subsided but persisted over the next three years. On October 26, 1998, Ecuador and Peru signed a comprehensive peace accord that established a framework for ending a border dispute. Formal demarcation of border regions started on May 13, 1999. The agreement was ratified without opposition by the congresses of both nations, finally bringing a definitive end to the dispute. (Full article...)

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Isaac Watts

English art historian, writer, antiquarian and politician Horace Walpole 1717–1797

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