Why is Latin America so called?

April 28, 2017 | Author: | Posted in Language

The countries in the New World to the south of the United States are called Latin America because the prevailing languages are of Latin origin.

France, Spain, Italy and Portugal are called Latin countries from the fact that their languages were influenced more by Latin than were the languages of other countries. For the same reason French, Spanish, Italian and Portuguese are sometimes referred to as the Romance (Roman) languages.

Spanish is the principal language of Latin America, which includes Mexico, Central America, South America and the West Indies. Portuguese is the prevailing language in Brazil, while French is spoken in French Guiana and a number of West Indian islands belonging or formerly belonging to France.

For convenience Latin America generally includes Dutch and British Guiana, British Honduras, the British and Dutch islands in the West Indies, and Puerto Rico, which is a dependency of the United States.

 

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