Extremadura

Extremadura

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Extremadura is an autonomous community of western Spain
Spain
Spain , officially the Kingdom of Spain languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Spain's official name is as follows:;;;;;;), is a country and member state of the European Union located in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula...

 whose capital city is Mérida
Mérida, Spain
Mérida is the capital of the autonomous community of Extremadura, western central Spain. It has a population of 57,127 . The Archaeological Ensemble of Mérida is a UNESCO World Heritage site since 1993.- Climate :...

. Its component provinces
Provinces of Spain
Spain and its autonomous communities are divided into fifty provinces .In other languages of Spain:*Catalan/Valencian , sing. província.*Galician , sing. provincia.*Basque |Galicia]] — are not also the capitals of provinces...

 are Cáceres
Cáceres (province)
The province of Cáceres is a province of western Spain, in the northern part of the autonomous community of Extremadura. It is bordered by the provinces of Salamanca, Ávila, Toledo, and Badajoz, and by Portugal....

 and Badajoz
Badajoz (province)
The province of Badajoz is a province of western Spain located in the autonomous community of Extremadura. It was formed in 1833. It is bordered by the provinces of Cáceres, Toledo, Ciudad Real, Córdoba, Seville, and Huelva, and by Portugal....

. It is bordered by Portugal
Portugal
Portugal , officially the Portuguese Republic is a country situated in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula. Portugal is the westernmost country of Europe, and is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean to the West and South and by Spain to the North and East. The Atlantic archipelagos of the...

 to the west. To the north it borders Castile and León
Castile and León
Castile and León is an autonomous community in north-western Spain. It was so constituted in 1983 and it comprises the historical regions of León and Old Castile...

 (provinces of Salamanca
Salamanca (province)
Salamanca is a province of western Spain, in the western part of the autonomous community of Castile and León. It is bordered by the provinces of Zamora, Valladolid, Ávila, and Cáceres; and by Portugal....

 and Ávila
Ávila (province)
Ávila is a province of central-western Spain, in the southern part of the autonomous community of Castile and León. It is bordered on the south by the provinces of Toledo and Cáceres, on the west by Salamanca, on the north by Valladolid, and on the east by Segovia and Madrid. Ávila has a...

); to the south, it borders Andalusia
Andalusia
Andalusia is the most populous and the second largest in area of the autonomous communities of Spain. The Andalusian autonomous community is officially recognised as a nationality of Spain. The territory is divided into eight provinces: Huelva, Seville, Cádiz, Córdoba, Málaga, Jaén, Granada and...

 (provinces of Huelva
Huelva (province)
Huelva is a province of southern Spain, in the western part of the autonomous community of Andalusia. It is bordered by Portugal, the provinces of Badajoz, Seville, and Cádiz, and the Atlantic Ocean. Its capital is Huelva....

, Seville
Seville (province)
Seville is a province of southern Spain, in the western part of the autonomous community of Andalusia. It is bordered by the provinces of Málaga, Cádiz, Huelva, Badajoz, and Córdoba.Its area is 14,042 km²...

, and Córdoba); and to the east, it borders Castile-La Mancha
Castile-La Mancha
Castile-La Mancha is an autonomous community of Spain. Castile-La Mancha is bordered by Castile and León, Madrid, Aragon, Valencia, Murcia, Andalusia, and Extremadura. It is one of the most sparsely populated of Spain's autonomous communities...

 (provinces of Toledo
Toledo (province)
Toledo is a province of central Spain, in the western part of the autonomous community of Castile-La Mancha. It is bordered by the provinces of Madrid, Cuenca, Ciudad Real, Badajoz, Cáceres, and Ávila....

 and Ciudad Real
Ciudad Real (province)
The province of Ciudad Real is a province of South-central Spain, in the southwestern part of the autonomous community of Castile-La Mancha. It is bordered by the provinces of Cuenca, Albacete, Jaén, Córdoba, Badajoz, and Toledo. Its extent is effectively that of the old province of La Mancha...

)

It is an important area for wildlife, particularly with the major reserve at Monfragüe
Monfragüe
Monfragüe is a comarca of Extremadura, western Spain, which contains the most recently designated of the country's fourteen National Parks ....

, which was designated a National Park in 2007, and the project of the International Tagus
Tagus
The Tagus is the longest river on the Iberian Peninsula. It is long, in Spain, along the border between Portugal and Spain and in Portugal, where it empties into the Atlantic Ocean at Lisbon. It drains an area of . The Tagus is highly utilized for most of its course...

 River Natural Park (Terreno Natural Río Tajo Internacional). The government of Extremadura is called Junta de Extremadura
Junta de Extremadura
The Junta de Extremadura is the collegial body that performs the functions of the Government of the Autonomous Community of Extremadura. Also, in accordance with the general guidelines of the President, establishes policy and directs the administration of the Autonomous Region exercises the...

. Extremadura is known because many of the conquerors of the New World
New World
The New World is one of the names used for the Western Hemisphere, specifically America and sometimes Oceania . The term originated in the late 15th century, when America had been recently discovered by European explorers, expanding the geographical horizon of the people of the European middle...

 were born there. Francisco Pizarro
Francisco Pizarro
Francisco Pizarro González, Marquess was a Spanish conquistador, conqueror of the Incan Empire, and founder of Lima, the modern-day capital of the Republic of Peru.-Early life:...

 and Hernán Cortes
Hernán Cortés
Hernán Cortés de Monroy y Pizarro, 1st Marquis of the Valley of Oaxaca was a Spanish Conquistador who led an expedition that caused the fall of the Aztec Empire and brought large portions of mainland Mexico under the rule of the King of Castile in the early 16th century...

 were second cousins and both were born in Extremadura. Pizarro conquered the Incan Empire and Cortes conquered Mexico
Mexico
The United Mexican States , commonly known as Mexico , is a federal constitutional republic in North America. It is bordered on the north by the United States; on the south and west by the Pacific Ocean; on the southeast by Guatemala, Belize, and the Caribbean Sea; and on the east by the Gulf of...

. Many others conquerors were born in Extremadura.

Geography


Extremadura is contained within 37° 57' N, 40° 85' N latitude and 4° 39' W, 7° 33' W longitude.

The area
Area
Area is a quantity that expresses the extent of a two-dimensional surface or shape in the plane. Area can be understood as the amount of material with a given thickness that would be necessary to fashion a model of the shape, or the amount of paint necessary to cover the surface with a single coat...

 of Extremadura is 41,633 km², making it the 5th largest of the Spanish autonomous communities.

It is located in the Southern Plateau (a subdivision of the Central Plateau).

Topography


In the center is the Sierra de las Villuercas which reaches an altitude of 1603 m on the Pico [Peak] Villuercas, Sierra de Montánchez  and the Sierra de San Pedro, which form part of the Montes de Toledo
Montes de Toledo
The Montes de Toledo are one of the main systems of mountain ranges in Spain. They divide the drainage basin of the Tagus from the basin of the Guadiana.-Description:...

.

To the south rises the Sierra Morena
Sierra Morena
The Sierra Morena is one of the main systems of mountain ranges in Spain.It stretches for 400 kilometres East-West across southern Spain, forming the southern border of the Meseta Central plateau of the Iberian Peninsula, and providing the watershed between the valleys of the Guadiana to the...

 which separates Extremadura from Andalusia
Andalusia
Andalusia is the most populous and the second largest in area of the autonomous communities of Spain. The Andalusian autonomous community is officially recognised as a nationality of Spain. The territory is divided into eight provinces: Huelva, Seville, Cádiz, Córdoba, Málaga, Jaén, Granada and...

 with Sierra de Tentudía where the highest altitude of these mountains in Extremadura is Pico Tentudía with 1104 m.

Hydrography




There are four different hydrographic
Hydrography
Hydrography is the measurement of the depths, the tides and currents of a body of water and establishment of the sea, river or lake bed topography and morphology. Normally and historically for the purpose of charting a body of water for the safe navigation of shipping...

 basins:
  • The basin of the Tagus
    Tagus
    The Tagus is the longest river on the Iberian Peninsula. It is long, in Spain, along the border between Portugal and Spain and in Portugal, where it empties into the Atlantic Ocean at Lisbon. It drains an area of . The Tagus is highly utilized for most of its course...

    , with two principal tributaries: to the right: the Tiétar
    Tiétar
    Tiétar is a river of Spain. It is a tributary of the Tagus. Its source is in the Sierra de Gredos mountain range and has a length of 170km. It flows into the Tagus at Monfragüe.-External links:*...

     and the Alagón
    Alagón River
    The Alagón is a 205 km long river in Spain, right tributary to the Tagus, as well as this river's longest tributary. Its source is at 1060 m in the Sierra de Francia, near the village Frades de la Sierra, south of Salamanca. The Alagón flows southwest, through the towns San Esteban de la Sierra,...

     and to the left: the Almonte
    Almonte
    -People:* Carlos Eduardo Almonte, arrested in 2010 on terrorism-related charges* Danny Almonte , former little league baseball player in the United States* Edwin Almonte , baseball player in the United States...

    , Ibor, Salor and the Sever
    Sever
    -Places in Portugal:* Sever , a civil parish in the municipality of Santa Marta de Penaguião* Sever , a civil parish in Moimenta da Beira Municipality...

    . The tributaries on the right edge carry a large quantity of water, which feed the gorges of the Sistema Central
    Sistema Central
    The Sistema Central is one of the main systems of mountain ranges in the Iberian Peninsula.-Description:The Sistema Central is a primary feature of the Meseta Central, the inner Iberian plateau, splitting the meseta into two parts...

     where the rainfall is abundant and the winter brings a great quantity of snow.
  • The basin of the Guadiana
    Guadiana
    The Guadiana , or Odiana, is an international river located on the Portuguese–Spanish border, separating Extremadura and Andalucia from Alentejo and Algarve...

    , which has principal tributaries: to the right: Guadarranque and Ruecas to the left: Zújar River which is its plentiful tributary and the Matachel.
  • The basin of the Guadalquivir
    Guadalquivir
    The Guadalquivir is the fifth longest river in the Iberian peninsula and the second longest river to be its whole length in Spain. The Guadalquivir is 657 kilometers long and drains an area of about 58,000 square kilometers...

     with only 1411 km² in Extremadura (2.45% of total).
  • The basin of the Duero with only 35 km² in Extremadura (0.04% of the basin).

Climate


The climate of Extremadura is Mediterranean, except to the north, where it is continental, and to the west, where the influence of the Atlantic makes the climate milder.

In general, it is characterized by its very hot and dry summers, with great droughts, and its long and mild winters due to the oceanic influence because of its proximity to the Atlantic coast of Portugal.

Temperatures


The yearly temperature fluctuates between an average minimum of 4°C and an average maximum of 33°C. In the north of Extremadura, the average temperatures are lower than those in the south, with temperatures gradually rising south towards the Sierra Morena, where they drop because of the altitude.

During the summer, the average temperature in July is greater than 26 °C, at times reaching 40 °C.

The winters are mild with the lowest temperatures being registered in the mountainous regions, with an average temperature of 7.5 °C.

The average snowfall is 40 cm mainly occurring in January and February.

Population

Most populous cities
Position Municipality Population
1 Badajoz
Badajoz
Badajoz is the capital of the Province of Badajoz in the autonomous community of Extremadura, Spain, situated close to the Portuguese border, on the left bank of the river Guadiana, and the Madrid–Lisbon railway. The population in 2007 was 145,257....

146,832
2 Cáceres
Cáceres, Spain
Cáceres is the capital of the same name province, in the autonomous community of Extremadura, Spain. , its population was 91,131 inhabitants. The municipio has a land area of 1,750.33 km², and is the largest in geographical extension in Spain....

92,187
3 Mérida
Mérida, Spain
Mérida is the capital of the autonomous community of Extremadura, western central Spain. It has a population of 57,127 . The Archaeological Ensemble of Mérida is a UNESCO World Heritage site since 1993.- Climate :...

55,568
4 Plasencia
Plasencia
Plasencia is a walled market city in the province of Cáceres, Extremadura, Western Spain. , it had a population of 41,447.Situated on the bank of the Jerte River, Plasencia has a historic quarter that is a consequence of the city's strategic location along the Silver Route, or Ruta de la Plata...

40,105
5 Don Benito
Don Benito
Don Benito is a small Spanish city in the Badajoz province, Extremadura, near the left bank of the Guadiana river.- Overview :Don Benito has 35,564 people, being part of an urban area with the Villanueva de la Serena only 5 km away....

39,051
6 Almendralejo
Almendralejo
Almendralejo is a town in the province of Badajoz, Extremadura, Spain. It is situated 59 km south-east of Badajoz, on the main road and rail route between Mérida and Seville. , it has a population of 33,975. There was a battle and massacre here in 1936 during the Spanish Civil War.Sights...

33,424
7 Villanueva de la Serena
Villanueva de la Serena
Villanueva de la Serena is a city in Badajoz Province, Extremadura, Spain. It has a population of 26,111 and forms part of a larger urban area with the neighbouring town of Don Benito....

26,978
8 Navalmoral de la Mata
Navalmoral de la Mata
Navalmoral de la Mata is a municipality located in the province of Cáceres, Extremadura, western Spain. In 2009, the municipality had a population of 17,228 inhabitants.-History:...

17,103
9 Zafra
Zafra
Zafra is a town situated in the Province of Badajoz , and the capital of the comarca of Zafra - Río Bodión. It has a population of 16,242, according to the figures of 2009....

16,417
10 Montijo
Montijo, Spain
Montijo is a town and municipality in the province of Badajoz, in Extremadura, Spain. It has a population of 16,236 inhabitants . It's located between Badajoz and Mérida, near Guadiana river banks...

15,648


As of January 1, 2009, the population of Extremadura is 1,102,410 inhabitants, representing 2.36% of the Spanish population (46,745,807).

The population density is very low (25 people/km²) compared to Spain as a whole.

The most populous province is that of Badajoz
Badajoz (province)
The province of Badajoz is a province of western Spain located in the autonomous community of Extremadura. It was formed in 1833. It is bordered by the provinces of Cáceres, Toledo, Ciudad Real, Córdoba, Seville, and Huelva, and by Portugal....

, with a population of 691,715 and a population density of 31.78 people/km². With an area of 21,766 km², it is the largest province in Spain. 413,766 people live in the province of Cáceres
Cáceres (province)
The province of Cáceres is a province of western Spain, in the northern part of the autonomous community of Extremadura. It is bordered by the provinces of Salamanca, Ávila, Toledo, and Badajoz, and by Portugal....

 at a density of 20.83 people/km², having an area of 19,868 km², making it the largest province in Spain after Badajoz.

The most important urban centers are Badajoz
Badajoz
Badajoz is the capital of the Province of Badajoz in the autonomous community of Extremadura, Spain, situated close to the Portuguese border, on the left bank of the river Guadiana, and the Madrid–Lisbon railway. The population in 2007 was 145,257....

 (148,334 inhabitants), Cáceres
Cáceres, Spain
Cáceres is the capital of the same name province, in the autonomous community of Extremadura, Spain. , its population was 91,131 inhabitants. The municipio has a land area of 1,750.33 km², and is the largest in geographical extension in Spain....

 (94,179), Mérida
Mérida, Spain
Mérida is the capital of the autonomous community of Extremadura, western central Spain. It has a population of 57,127 . The Archaeological Ensemble of Mérida is a UNESCO World Heritage site since 1993.- Climate :...

 (57,127) and Plasencia
Plasencia
Plasencia is a walled market city in the province of Cáceres, Extremadura, Western Spain. , it had a population of 41,447.Situated on the bank of the Jerte River, Plasencia has a historic quarter that is a consequence of the city's strategic location along the Silver Route, or Ruta de la Plata...

 (41,447).

Immigration to Extremadura


There are 38,747 foreigners living in Extremadura according to the INE census of January 1, 2009, of which 23,807 live in the province of Badajoz
Badajoz (province)
The province of Badajoz is a province of western Spain located in the autonomous community of Extremadura. It was formed in 1833. It is bordered by the provinces of Cáceres, Toledo, Ciudad Real, Córdoba, Seville, and Huelva, and by Portugal....

 and 14,940 reside in province of Cáceres
Cáceres (province)
The province of Cáceres is a province of western Spain, in the northern part of the autonomous community of Extremadura. It is bordered by the provinces of Salamanca, Ávila, Toledo, and Badajoz, and by Portugal....

. The largest immigrant community is Moroccan
Moroccan people
The Moroccan people are a people that share a common Moroccan culture, ancestry and speak the Moroccan variant of the Arabic language or a Berber language as a mother tongue....

 with 8,238 people, followed by the Romanian
Romanians
The Romanians are an ethnic group native to Romania, who speak Romanian; they are the majority inhabitants of Romania....

 with 4,324 and then the Portuguese with 3,492 people. Brazilians account for 2,050 and Colombians make up 1,725. Of immigrants from Sub-Saharan Africa
Sub-Saharan Africa
Sub-Saharan Africa as a geographical term refers to the area of the African continent which lies south of the Sahara. A political definition of Sub-Saharan Africa, instead, covers all African countries which are fully or partially located south of the Sahara...

, the largest community is Senegalese with 164 people. Of those from Asia, the Chinese make up the largest group with 1,079 people.

Historical development


The Extremaduran population, according to the 1591 census of the provinces of the Kingdom of Castile
Kingdom of Castile
Kingdom of Castile was one of the medieval kingdoms of the Iberian Peninsula. It emerged as a political autonomous entity in the 9th century. It was called County of Castile and was held in vassalage from the Kingdom of León. Its name comes from the host of castles constructed in the region...

, was around 540,000 people, making up 8% of the total population of Spain. No other census was performed until 1717, when 326,358 people were counted as living in Extremadura.

From this period, the population grew steadily until the 1960s (1,379,072 people in 1960). After 1960, emigration to more prosperous regions of Spain and Europe drained the population.

Administrative divisions


Extremadura is divided into 383 municipalities, 164 are part of the Province of Badajoz and the other 219 are part of the Province of Cáceres.


There are also traditional comarcas
Comarcas of Spain
In Spain traditionally and historically, some autonomous communities are also divided into comarcas .In other languages of Spain:*Catalan/Valencian , sing comarca.*Galician , sing. comarca....

 in Extremadura, like Las Villuercas
Las Villuercas
Las Villuercas is a comarca located in the province of Cáceres, western Spain. It belongs to the Autonomous Community of Extremadura.Despite of the traditional strong identity of its inhabitants, this historical region has not been able to achieve the necessary legal recognition for its...

 and Las Hurdes
Las Hurdes
Las Hurdes is a comarca in the Sistema Central, at the northern end of province of Cáceres of Extremadura, one of Spain's seventeen Autonomous Communities.-Description:...

, but these don't have much official recognition.

Languages


The only language that is officially recognized is Spanish, but other languages are also spoken:
  • Portuguese, with many varieties: Oliventine Portuguese in Olivenza
    Olivenza
    Olivenza or Olivença is a town in the autonomous community of Extremadura, situated on a disputed section of the border between Portugal and Spain...

    , the Portuguese of Herrera de Alcántara
    Herrera de Alcántara
    Herrera de Alcántara is a municipality located in the province of Cáceres, Extremadura, Spain. According to the 2006 census , the municipality has a population of 293 inhabitants....

    , the Portuguese of Cedillo
    Cedillo
    Cedillo is a municipality located in the province of Cáceres, Extremadura, Spain. According to the 2008 census , the municipality has a population of 518 inhabitants.- Languages :...

    , as well as the Portuguese of Valencia de Alcántara
    Valencia de Alcántara
    Valencia de Alcántara is a Spanish town near the Portuguese border . It is located in Cáceres province.Nuestra Señora de Rocamador is the most important church...

     and La Codosera
    La Codosera
    La Codosera is a municipality located in the province of Badajoz, Extremadura, Spain. According to the 2006 census , the municipality has a population of 2,269 inhabitants....

    . The majority of these varieties of Portuguese are endangered. Some Extremaduran schools teach these as a foreign language, but not usually to the level of fluency.
  • A Fala
    Fala language
    Fala is a Romance linguistic variety commonly classified in the Portuguese-Galician subgroup, with some traits from Leonese, spoken in Spain by about 10,500 people, of whom 5,500 live in a valley of the northwestern part of Extremadura near the border with Portugal...

    , a Galician-Portuguese
    Galician-Portuguese
    Galician-Portuguese or Old Portuguese was a West Iberian Romance language spoken in the Middle Ages, in the northwest area of the Iberian Peninsula. It was first spoken in the area bounded in the north and west by the Atlantic Ocean and the Douro River in the south but it was later extended south...

     language, is a specially protected language and is spoken in the valley of Jálama.
  • The Extremaduran language
    Extremaduran language
    Extremaduran is a Romance language, spoken by several hundred thousand people in Spain, in an area covering the north-western part of the autonomous community of Extremadura and adjoining areas in the province of Salamanca....

    . It is related to Leonese
    Leonese language
    The Leonese language is the endonym term used to refer to all vernacular Romance dialects of the Astur-Leonese linguistic group in the Spanish provinces of León and Zamora; Astur-Leonese also includes the dialects...

     and is severely endangered. It is taught neither publicly nor privately.

Agriculture


Wild Black Iberian pig
Black Iberian Pig
The Black Iberian pig, also known in Portugal as Alentejano, is a breed, Mediterraneus, of the domestic pig that is indigenous to the Mediterranean area...

s roam in the area and consume acorn
Acorn
The acorn, or oak nut, is the nut of the oaks and their close relatives . It usually contains a single seed , enclosed in a tough, leathery shell, and borne in a cup-shaped cupule. Acorns vary from 1–6 cm long and 0.8–4 cm broad...

s from oak
Oak
An oak is a tree or shrub in the genus Quercus , of which about 600 species exist. "Oak" may also appear in the names of species in related genera, notably Lithocarpus...

 groves. These pigs are caught and used for the cured ham dish jamón ibérico
Jamón ibérico
Jamón ibérico, Iberian ham, also called pata negra, is a type of cured ham produced mostly in Spain, but also in some Portuguese regions where it is called presunto ibérico...

. The higher the percentage of acorns eaten by the pigs, the more valuable (and expensive) the ham. Iberian Ham that can boast an acorn-fed average of 90%+ of the pigs diet can be sold for more than twice as much as ham whose pigs ate on average less than 70% of acorns, for example. In the US, Iberian Ham directly from Extremadura, bone-in, was illegal until around 2005. At that time, enough U.S. restaurants were in demand for the delicacy that Spain decided to ship it bone-out, which the U.S.D.A.'s health codes would (and continue to) approve.

History



Lusitania
Lusitania
Lusitania or Hispania Lusitania was an ancient Roman province including approximately all of modern Portugal south of the Douro river and part of modern Spain . It was named after the Lusitani or Lusitanian people...

, an ancient Roman
Roman Empire
The Roman Empire was the post-Republican period of the ancient Roman civilization, characterised by an autocratic form of government and large territorial holdings in Europe and around the Mediterranean....

 province approximately including current day Portugal (except for the northern area today known as Norte Region), and a central western portion of the current day Spain, covered in those times today's Autonomous Community of Extremadura. Mérida
Mérida, Spain
Mérida is the capital of the autonomous community of Extremadura, western central Spain. It has a population of 57,127 . The Archaeological Ensemble of Mérida is a UNESCO World Heritage site since 1993.- Climate :...

 (capital of Extremadura), became the capital of the Roman Lusitania province, and one of the most important cities in the Roman Empire
Roman Empire
The Roman Empire was the post-Republican period of the ancient Roman civilization, characterised by an autocratic form of government and large territorial holdings in Europe and around the Mediterranean....

.

Extremadura was the source of many of the most famous Spanish conquerors ("conquistador
Conquistador
Conquistadors were Spanish soldiers, explorers, and adventurers who brought much of the Americas under the control of Spain in the 15th to 16th centuries, following Europe's discovery of the New World by Christopher Columbus in 1492...

es") and settlers in America. Hernán Cortés
Hernán Cortés
Hernán Cortés de Monroy y Pizarro, 1st Marquis of the Valley of Oaxaca was a Spanish Conquistador who led an expedition that caused the fall of the Aztec Empire and brought large portions of mainland Mexico under the rule of the King of Castile in the early 16th century...

, Francisco Pizarro
Francisco Pizarro
Francisco Pizarro González, Marquess was a Spanish conquistador, conqueror of the Incan Empire, and founder of Lima, the modern-day capital of the Republic of Peru.-Early life:...

, Gonzalo Pizarro
Gonzalo Pizarro
Gonzalo Pizarro y Alonso was a Spanish conquistador and younger paternal half-brother of Francisco Pizarro, the conqueror of the Inca Empire...

, Juan Pizarro
Juan Pizarro
Juan Ramon Pizarro Cordova is a former major league baseball pitcher.-Milwaukee Braves:Juan Pizarro signed with the Milwaukee Braves as an amateur free agent in 1956. After going 27-6 with a 2.06 earned run average in the minors, he made his major league debut on May 4, 1957 against the Pittsburgh...

, Hernando Pizarro
Hernándo Pizarro
Hernando Pizarro y de Vargas was a Spanish conquistador and one of the Pizarro brothers who ruled over Peru...

, Hernando de Soto, Pedro de Alvarado
Pedro de Alvarado
Pedro de Alvarado y Contreras was a Spanish conquistador and governor of Guatemala. He participated in the conquest of Cuba, in Juan de Grijalva's exploration of the coasts of Yucatan and the Gulf of Mexico, and in the conquest of Mexico led by Hernan Cortes...

, Pedro de Valdivia
Pedro de Valdivia
Pedro Gutiérrez de Valdivia or Valdiva was a Spanish conquistador and the first royal governor of Chile. After serving with the Spanish army in Italy and Flanders, he was sent to South America in 1534, where he served as lieutenant under Francisco Pizarro in Peru, acting as his second in command...

, Álvar Núñez Cabeza de Vaca
Álvar Núñez Cabeza de Vaca
Álvar Núñez Cabeza de Vaca was a Spanish explorer of the New World, one of four survivors of the Narváez expedition...

 Inés Suárez
Inés Suárez
Inés de Suárez, also called Inés Suárez, was a Spanish conquistadora and mistress to Pedro de Valdivia who participated in the Conquest of Chile, successfully defending Santiago against a Mapuche attack in 1541...

, Alonso de Sotomayor
Alonso de Sotomayor
Alonso de Sotomayor y Valmediano was a Spanish conquistador from Extremadura, and a Royal Governor of Chile.-Early life:He was born in Trujillo, in the province of Extremadura, the son of Gutiérrez de Sotomayor e Hinojosa and Beatriz de Valmediano...

, Francisco de Orellana
Francisco de Orellana
Francisco de Orellana was a Spanish explorer and conquistador. He completed the first known navigation of the length of the Amazon River, which was originally named for him...

, Pedro Gomez Duran y Chaves and Vasco Núñez de Balboa
Vasco Núñez de Balboa
Vasco Núñez de Balboa was a Spanish explorer, governor, and conquistador. He is best known for having crossed the Isthmus of Panama to the Pacific Ocean in 1513, becoming the first European to lead an expedition to have seen or reached the Pacific from the New World.He traveled to the New World in...

 were all born in Extremadura and many towns and cities in America carry a name from their homeland: Mérida
Mérida, Spain
Mérida is the capital of the autonomous community of Extremadura, western central Spain. It has a population of 57,127 . The Archaeological Ensemble of Mérida is a UNESCO World Heritage site since 1993.- Climate :...

 is the name of the administrative capital of Extremadura, and also of important cities in Mexico and Venezuela; Medellín
Medellín (Spain)
Medellín is a village in the province of Badajoz, Extremadura, Spain, notable as the birthplace of Hernán Cortés in 1485 and the site of the Battle of Medellín, during the Peninsular War...

 is now a little town in Extremadura, but also the name of the second largest city in Colombia
Medellín
Medellín , officially the Municipio de Medellín or Municipality of Medellín, is the second largest city in Colombia. It is in the Aburrá Valley, one of the more northerly of the Andes in South America. It has a population of 2.3 million...

; Albuquerque is the largest city in New Mexico and its name is due to a transcription mistake of Alburquerque
Alburquerque, Badajoz
Alburquerque is a town in the province of Badajoz in Spain. It has 5,600 inhabitants. It is very close to the border with Portugal and was an ancient dominion of the kings of this country...

, another town in Extremadura. The two (to date) Spanish astronaut
Astronaut
An astronaut or cosmonaut is a person trained by a human spaceflight program to command, pilot, or serve as a crew member of a spacecraft....

s, Miguel López-Alegría
Michael Lopez-Alegria
Michael Eladio "LA" López-Alegría b. May 30, 1958, is a Spanish-American astronaut; a veteran of three Space Shuttle missions and one International Space Station mission...

 and Pedro Duque
Pedro Duque
Pedro Duque Duque is a Spanish astronaut and a veteran of two space missions.Duque earned a degree in Aeronautical Engineering from the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid in 1986. He worked for GMV and for the European Space Agency for six years before being selected as an astronaut candidate in...

, also have family connections in Extremadura. King Ferdinand II of Aragon
Ferdinand II of Aragon
Ferdinand the Catholic was King of Aragon , Sicily , Naples , Valencia, Sardinia, and Navarre, Count of Barcelona, jure uxoris King of Castile and then regent of that country also from 1508 to his death, in the name of...

 died in the village of Madrigalejo
Madrigalejo
Madrigalejo is a municipality located in the province of Cáceres, Extremadura, Spain. According to the 2006 census , the municipality has a population of 2075 inhabitants. In this village, Ferdinand II of Aragon died in 1516....

, Cáceres
Cáceres (province)
The province of Cáceres is a province of western Spain, in the northern part of the autonomous community of Extremadura. It is bordered by the provinces of Salamanca, Ávila, Toledo, and Badajoz, and by Portugal....

 in 1516. Pedro de Valdivia
Pedro de Valdivia
Pedro Gutiérrez de Valdivia or Valdiva was a Spanish conquistador and the first royal governor of Chile. After serving with the Spanish army in Italy and Flanders, he was sent to South America in 1534, where he served as lieutenant under Francisco Pizarro in Peru, acting as his second in command...

 founded numerous cities in Chile
Chile
Chile ,officially the Republic of Chile , is a country in South America occupying a long, narrow coastal strip between the Andes mountains to the east and the Pacific Ocean to the west. It borders Peru to the north, Bolivia to the northeast, Argentina to the east, and the Drake Passage in the far...

 with names from small villages in Extremadura, such as Valdivia
Valdivia, Chile
Valdivia is a city and commune in southern Chile administered by the Municipality of Valdivia. The city is named after its founder Pedro de Valdivia and is located at the confluence of the Calle-Calle, Valdivia and Cau-Cau Rivers, approximately east of the coastal towns of Corral and Niebla...

 and La Serena. The capital Santiago de Chile was founded as "Santiago de Nueva Extremadura" (Santiago of New Extremadura).

Musicians


Extremadura has produced many singers, including: Soraya Arnelas
Soraya Arnelas
Soraya Arnelas Rubiales , better known by her stage name Soraya, is a popular Spanish singer...

(singer), Luis Pastor (singer), Roberto Iniesta (singer), Pablo Guerrero, Bebe
Bebe (entertainer)
Bebe is a Spanish singer and actress.-Biography:Bebe was born María Nieves Rebolledo Vila in Valencia de Alcántara, Spain. Her parents were members of the Extremaduran folk group Surberina...

(singer), Alberto Porro Carmona
Alberto Porro Carmona
Alberto Porro Carmona is a Spanish conductor, composer, author, music lecturer, teacher and saxophonist. He has led several important European and American orchestras. Currently he works as music conductor at Akureyri School of Music...

 "Al Carmona" (music conductor), Esteban Sánchez (pianist), Gecko Turner (singer), Extremoduro
Extremoduro
Extremoduro is a Spanish rock band from Plasencia, Extremadura. The band is led by Roberto Iniesta, also known as "Robe", who is often referred as "El rey de Extremadura" ....

 (rock band)

Painters and poets


Eduardo Naranjo (painter), Dolores Morcillo (painter), Enrique Jiménez Carrero (painter), Juan Barjola (painter), Jesús Delgado Valhondo
Jesús Delgado Valhondo
Jesús Delgado Valhondo was a spanish poet.-Biography:Jesús Delgado Valhondo was born in Mérida on 19 February 1909, but after the death of his father his family moved to Cáceres. When he was six he suffered an illness which left him lame...

 (poet)

Historic


Many legendary Spanish conquistadors hailed from Extremadura, including Hernán Cortés
Hernán Cortés
Hernán Cortés de Monroy y Pizarro, 1st Marquis of the Valley of Oaxaca was a Spanish Conquistador who led an expedition that caused the fall of the Aztec Empire and brought large portions of mainland Mexico under the rule of the King of Castile in the early 16th century...

 and Francisco Pizarro
Francisco Pizarro
Francisco Pizarro González, Marquess was a Spanish conquistador, conqueror of the Incan Empire, and founder of Lima, the modern-day capital of the Republic of Peru.-Early life:...

, who conquered the Aztec
Aztec
The Aztec people were certain ethnic groups of central Mexico, particularly those groups who spoke the Nahuatl language and who dominated large parts of Mesoamerica in the 14th, 15th and 16th centuries, a period referred to as the late post-classic period in Mesoamerican chronology.Aztec is the...

 and Inca empires respectively.

See also


  • Extremaduran language
    Extremaduran language
    Extremaduran is a Romance language, spoken by several hundred thousand people in Spain, in an area covering the north-western part of the autonomous community of Extremadura and adjoining areas in the province of Salamanca....

  • Extremaduran cuisine
    Extremaduran cuisine
    Extremadura, Spain is known for the different ways of preparing the Iberian pork and the mutton. The main characteristics of the traditional Extremaduran cuisine were its simplicity, its lack of clutter and its low cost. It is also a cuisine reflecting a generous spirit, for many of its...

  • Extremadura (Vino de la Tierra)
    Extremadura (Vino de la Tierra)
    Extremadura is a Spanish geographical indication for Vino de la Tierra wines located in the autonomous region of Extremadura. Vino de la Tierra is one step below the mainstream Denominación de Origen indication on the Spanish wine quality ladder....


External links