Latin America Vocabulary- 9th Grade World Geography

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indigenous
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native to a place
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dialect
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local form of a language used in a particular place or by a certain group
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urbanization
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movement of people from rural areas to cities
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megacity
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City with more than 10 million people
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primate city
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a city that dominates a country’s economy, culture, and government and in which population is concentrated; usually the capital
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cordillera
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parallel chains or ranges of mountains
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altiplano
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Spanish for “high plain,” a region in Peru and Bolivia encircled by the Andes peaks
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escarpment
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steep cliff or slope between a higher and lower land surface
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llano
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fertile plains in inland areas of Colombia and Venezuela
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pampa
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grassy, treeless plains of southern South America
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gaucho
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the cowhands of Argentina and Uruguay
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hydroelectric power
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electrical energy generated by falling water
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estuary
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an area where the tide meets a river current
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glyph
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picture writing carved in stone
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quipu
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knotted cords of various lengths and colors used by the inca to keep financial records
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chinampas
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floating farming islands made by the Aztec.
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conquistador
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Spanish term for “conqueror,” referring to soldiers who conquered Native Americans in Latin America
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viceroy
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representative of the Spanish monarch appointed to enforce laws in colonial Latin America
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caudillo
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a Latin American political leader from the late 1800s on, often a military dictator
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developing country
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country in the process of becoming industrialized

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