The country Chile is located in South America and there are a few different theories about how the name of the country came to be. Diego de Rosales, who was a Spanish chronicler in the 17th century, called the Inca Indians the Aconcagua Valley “Chili”, which must have been a distortion of the name of the chief Tili. Tili is said to have been the area’s chief when the Inca people conquered it in the 15th century. Another theory is that Aconcagua is very similar to another valley located in Peru where there was a city called Chile. It may also be that Chile got its name from a Native American language and that the meaning in such a case is “end of the world”, “seagulls”, “cold” or “snow”. The Spanish conquistadors heard about this name from the Inca people and they spelled the name “Chili” in English until 1900 when they changed to today’s spelling namely Chile.
Chile borders Argentina to the east, Bolivia to the northeast and Peru to the north. The archipelagos Easter Island, Desventurada Islands, Juan Fernández Islands and Sala y Gómezön in the Pacific Ocean belong to Chile and the country claims part of Antarctica. The capital of Chile is called Santiago de Chile and is also the country’s largest city. The desert in the northern part of the country is rich in minerals and especially in copper. Most live in the central parts of the country where agriculture is also practiced. The country is rich in forests and pastures, and here there are also some volcanoes and lakes. The country’s southern coast looks like a labyrinth of fjords and canals with peninsulas and islands.
A little history
Spain colonized Chile in the middle of the 16th century and took over the Inca territories in northern and central Chile. However, the areas of the Mapuche people in the southern and central parts of the country were not conquered. Chile declared its independence from Spain in 1818 and during the 19th century the country grew economically and also in terms of territory. It was during this time that the resistance of the Mapuche people was defeated.
During the 1960s and 1970s, the country went through a political riot that culminated in a coup in 1973 that led to a period of 16 years with a military dictator as leader of the country. It was Augusto Pinochet who led this regime that fell in 1990 and was replaced by a political coalition. Today, Chile is one of South America’s most stable nations.
Geography and climate
According to BRIDGAT.COM, Chile’s climate is varied and here is the world’s driest desert in the north, the Atacama Desert. In the middle of the country you have a Mediterranean climate. On Easter Island, there is a tropically humid climate and the country also has alpine tundra and glaciers. Chile stretches about 4,300 km from north to south and is within the Pacific Ocean’s volcanic activity. This country is considered the world’s narrowest and longest country. In the Andes, there are some of the world’s highest mountain peaks that reach over 6,000 meters. The highest peak is on Mount Ojos del Salado and it is located at an altitude of 6,879 meters.