The Americas (or America) are lands in the Western Hemisphere that are also known as the New World. Comprising the continents of North America and South America, along with their associated islands, they cover 8.3% of the Earth's total surface area (28.4% of its land area).
Most people consider the countries in Central America to be part of North America instead of South America.
While the word American is usually used to mean a person or a thing from the United States, the most populated country in the Americas, sometimes people and things from anywhere in the Americas are called "American".[source?]
The Americas, or America, were discovered by Europeans in the late 15th century during the Age of Exploration. Christopher Columbus, sailing for Spain, reached the Caribbean islands in 1492, starting the connection between the Old World and the New World. After that, Europeans explored and settled in the Americas.
In the 16th century, powerful empires existed in the Americas. The Aztec Empire ruled central Mexico, and the Inca Empire controlled much of western South America. But when European colonizers arrived, conflicts happened, and these empires eventually fell.
During the next centuries, countries like Spain, Portugal, France, and England created colonies in different parts of the Americas. This led to changes in cultures, introduction of new diseases, and negative effects on native people.
In the 19th century, many American countries became independent from European rule. The American Revolution (1775-1783) led to the United States forming, and leaders like Simón Bolívar helped South American countries gain independence.
Over time, the Americas experienced important events like westward expansion in the U.S., the Mexican-American War, the Mexican Revolution, and the Cuban Revolution. The continent played a big role in World Wars and the Cold War too.
Today, the Americas have diverse cultures, languages, and traditions due to their history of interactions between indigenous people, European settlers, and immigrants from around the world.
Related pages change
- "AMERICAN (adjective) definition and synonyms | Macmillan Dictionary". www.macmillandictionary.com. Retrieved 2021-06-07.