Two theories stand out on the origin of the name “Venezuela.” One theory says that the word from the native word “Veneçiuela.”
–This term signifies “Large Water,” in reference to the great territorial extension of Maracaibo Lake.
–The second theory says that the word comes from little Italy word of “Venice” (that is to say small Venice), supposedly attributed to Americo Vespuccio who named it that because the small huts of the natives that lived in the Sinamaica Lagoon looked like the Venetian dwellings of those times.
Look at the beautiful Angel Falls, the world's TALLEST waterfall!
The Main Language = Spanish
- Columbus explored Venezuela in 1498.
The area was inhabited by Arawak, Carib, and Chibcha Indians.
- In 1535, Spanish Conquistadors (Spanish conquerors) start to colonize in Venezuela.
- During 1550, African slaves were shipped to Venezuela to work on various plantations.
- The people wanted their freedom and they revolted in 1810. They gained INDEPENDENCE from Spain in 1821!!!
These facts help us understand there is a blend of cultures.
In addition, there is a strong influence from Eurpoean countries, including:
Great Britain, Italy, and Germany.
Venezuelan government =
They have a President (6yr term, perpetual), Vice President (chosen by president), and president of the National Assembly (165 seats, elected members).
- The political history includes a great deal of leadership change, major poverty, corruption, and the current crisis over economic problems including high inflation.
- The religion is predominantly Catholic.
Click here if you would like to read more about Venezuelan history.
Among the political ups and downs, there is a rich and beautiful culture with the people of Venezuela. The main ethnic groups included are European, African, and Indian. Despite historical and cultural differences, Venezuela is not a country of racial rivalry. There is quite a bit of racial integration!
Let us explore Venezuelan culture further...
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