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Encyclopedia > Belize
Belize
Flag of Belize Coat of arms of Belize
Flag Coat of arms
MottoSub Umbra Floreo  (Latin)
""Under the Shade I Flourish""
Anthem"Land of the Free"
Royal anthem"God Save the Queen"
Capital Belmopan
17°15′N 88°46′W / 17.25, -88.767
Largest city Belize City
Official languages English (official)
Recognised regional languages Kriol, Spanish
Demonym Belizean
Government Parliamentary democracy and Constitutional monarchy
 -  Monarch Elizabeth II
 -  Governor-General Sir Colville Young
 -  Prime Minister Dean Barrow
Independence from the United Kingdom 
 -  Date September 21, 1981 
Area
 -  Total 22,966 km² (150th)
8,867 sq mi 
 -  Water (%) 0.7
Population
 -  (September 2007 est.) estimate 314,275 (173rd²)
 -  Density 13/km² (202nd²)
34/sq mi
GDP (PPP) 2006 estimate
 -  Total $2.098 billion (163rd)
 -  Per capita $8,400 (76th)
HDI (2007) 0.777 (medium) (80th)
Currency Dollar (BZD)
Time zone central time (UTC-6)
Internet TLD .bz
Calling code +501
1 These ranks are based on the 2007 figures.

Belize (pronounced /bəˈliːz/) is a country in Central America. It is the only officially English speaking country in the region. A British colony for more than a century, it was known as British Honduras until 1973, and became an independent nation in 1981. Belize is a member of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), the Sistema de Integración Centroamericana (SICA), and the Commonwealth of Nations. With 8,867 square miles (22,960 km²) of territory and 297,651 people (Belize CSO, 2007 mid year estimate), the population density is the lowest in the Central American region and one of the lowest in the world. The country's growth rate is 3.5% (2006 estimate). It is bordered to the south and west by Guatemala, to the north and northwest by Mexico and to the east by the Caribbean Sea. Image File history File links Flag_of_Belize. ... Flag Ratio: 2:3 The national flag of Belize was adopted on September 21, 1981 upon independence from the United Kingdom. ... The Coat of Arms of Belize was adopted upon independence, and is only slightly different from the coat of arms used when Belize was a British colony. ... For other uses, see Motto (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Latins and Latin (disambiguation). ... A national anthem is a generally patriotic musical composition that evokes and eulogizes the history, traditions and struggles of its people, recognized either by a countrys government as the official national song, or by convention through use by the people. ... This article is about the national anthem of Belize. ... A royal anthem is a patriotic song, much like a national anthem that recognizes the nations monarch. ... Publication of an early version in The Gentlemans Magazine, 15 October 1745. ... Image File history File links LocationBelize. ... Not to be confused with capitol. ... Belmopan, estimated population 12,300, is the capital of Belize. ... Belize City, Belize is the largest city of the Central American nation Belize, and its former capital. ... An official language is a language that is given a special legal status in the countries, states, and other territories. ... The English language is a West Germanic language that originates in England. ... A regional language is a language spoken in a part of a country, be it may be a small area, a federal state or province, or a wider area. ... Belizean Creole, also called Belizean Kriol or Kriol , is closely related to Miskito Coastal Creole, Rio Abajo Creole, Colón Creole, and San Andrés and Providencia Creole. ... A demonym or gentilic is a word that denotes the members of a people or the inhabitants of a place. ... States currently utilizing parliamentary systems are denoted in red and orange—the former being constitutional monarchies where authority is vested in a parliament, the latter being parliamentary republics whose parliaments are effectively supreme over a separate head of state. ... Forms of government Part of the Politics series Politics Portal This box:      A constitutional monarchy or limited monarchy is a form of government established under a constitutional system which acknowledges an elected or hereditary monarch as head of state, as opposed to an absolute monarchy, where the monarch is not... The countries of the Commonwealth Realm share the same monarch. ... Elizabeth II (Elizabeth Alexandra Mary Windsor; born 21 April 1926) is Queen of sixteen sovereign states, holding each crown and title equally. ... Sir Colville Young is the current Governor-General of Belize, the representative in the country of Belizes head of state Elizabeth II. See also: List of Governors-General of Belize Categories: Stub ... Sir Colville Norbert Young (born 1932) is the Governor-General of Belize, and also patron of the Scout Association of Belize. ... The government of Belize is directed by the Prime Minister. ... Dean Oliver Barrow (born March 2, 1951) is a Belizean lawyer and politician and the leader of the United Democratic Party. ... is the 264th day of the year (265th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... AUGUST 25 1981 US Marine Sean Vance is Born on the 25th of August {ear nav|1981}} Year 1981 (MCMLXXXI) was a common year starting on Thursday (link displays the 1981 Gregorian calendar). ... This article is about the physical quantity. ... To help compare orders of magnitude of different geographical regions, we list here areas between 10,000 km² and 100,000 km². ... This is a list of the countries of the world sorted by area. ... A square mile is an English unit of area equal to that of a square with sides each 1 statute mile (≈1,609 m) in length. ... Impact from a water drop causes an upward rebound jet surrounded by circular capillary waves. ... A percentage is a way of expressing a proportion, a ratio or a fraction as a whole number, by using 100 as the denominator. ... Map of countries by population for the year 2007 This is a list of countries ordered according to population. ... Population density per square kilometre by country, 2006 Population density map of the world in 1994. ... Population density by country, 2006 List of countries and dependencies by population density in inhabitants/km². The list includes sovereign states and self-governing dependent territories that are recognized by the United Nations. ... PPP of GDP for the countries of the world (2003). ... There are three lists of countries of the world sorted by their gross domestic product (GDP) (the value of all final goods and services produced within a nation in a given year). ... Per capita is a Latin phrase meaning for each head. ... This article includes two lists of countries of the world[1] sorted by their gross domestic product (GDP) at purchasing power parity (PPP) per capita, the value of all final goods and services produced within a nation in a given year divided by the average population for the same year. ... This page talks about Human Development Index, for other HDIs see HDI (disambiguation) World map indicating Human Development Index (2007). ... This talks about the countries in the Human Development Index, for information on the Human Development Index, please Click Here World map indicating Human Development Index (2007) (Colour-blind compliant map) For red-green color vision problems. ... ISO 4217 Code BZD User(s) Belize Inflation 3% Source The World Factbook, 2006 est. ... ISO 4217 is the international standard describing three letter codes (also known as the currency code) to define the names of currencies established by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO). ... Timezone and TimeZone redirect here. ... UTC redirects here. ... A country code top-level domain (ccTLD) is a top-level domain used and reserved for a country or a dependent territory. ... .bz is the Internet country code top-level domain (ccTLD) for Belize. ... This is a list of country calling codes defined by ITU-T recommendation E.164. ... For other uses, see Central America (disambiguation). ... The English language is a West Germanic language that originates in England. ... It has been suggested that Benign colonialism be merged into this article or section. ... Flag Capital Belize City Language(s) English Government Constitutional monarchy History  - Established 1871  - Disestablished 1981 Area 22,966 km2 8,867 sq mi Currency British Honduran dollar Flag of British Honduras British Honduras was the former name of what is now the independent nation of Belize and was a British... Map showing CARICOM members, associates and observers Seat of Secretariat Georgetown, Guyana Official languages English4 Membership  15 full members1  5 associate members2  7 observers3 Leaders  -  Secretary-General Edwin W. Carrington (since 1992)  -  CARICOM Heads of Government   Establishment  -  August 1, 1973  Website http://www. ... The Commonwealth of Nations as of 2007 Headquarters Marlborough House, London, UK Official languages English Membership 53 sovereign states Leaders  -  Queen Elizabeth II  -  Secretary-General Kamalesh Sharma Appointed 24 November 2007 Establishment  -  Balfour Declaration 18 November 1926   -  Statute of Westminster 11 December 1931   -  London Declaration 28 April 1949  Area  -  Total... Population density by country, 2006 List of countries and dependencies by population density in inhabitants/km². The list includes sovereign states and self-governing dependent territories that are recognized by the United Nations. ... Map of Central America and the Caribbean The Caribbean Sea (pronounced or ) is a tropical sea in the Western Hemisphere, part of the Atlantic Ocean, southeast of the Gulf of Mexico. ...

Contents

History

Xunantunich, Belize.
Xunantunich, Belize.
Caana, a Mayan pyramid at Caracol, Cayo District.
Caana, a Mayan pyramid at Caracol, Cayo District.
Main article: History of Belize

The Mopan Maya, were the original inhabitants of Belize. The Maya civilization spread itself over Belize beginning around 1500 BC, and flourished until about AD 900. European settlement began with the Baymen, British pirates, privateers and English seamen as early as 1638.[1] Image File history File links Download high resolution version (872x544, 102 KB) Xunantunich, Belize, 1976. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (872x544, 102 KB) Xunantunich, Belize, 1976. ... Xunantunich (shoo-NAHN-too-nich) is a Maya archaeological site in western Belize, about 80 miles (130 km) west of Belize City, in the Cayo District. ... Image File history File links Metadata Size of this preview: 800 × 450 pixelsFull resolution (3840 × 2160 pixel, file size: 4. ... Image File history File links Metadata Size of this preview: 800 × 450 pixelsFull resolution (3840 × 2160 pixel, file size: 4. ... Caracol or El Caracol is the name given to a large ancient Maya site located in the Cayo District of the nation of Belize. ... The Cayo District is a district in the west of the nation of Belize. ... The history of Belize dates back thousands of years. ... Mopan is one of the Yucatecan branch of the family of Mayan languages. ... This article is about the pre-Columbian Maya civilization. ... Look up pirate and piracy in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... For other uses, see Privateer (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see England (disambiguation). ...


The origin of the name Belize is unclear, but one idea is that the name is from the Maya word belix, meaning "muddy water", applied to the Belize River. A less likely idea is that it derives from the Spanish pronunciation of the surname of the pirate who created the first settlement in Belize in 1638, Peter Wallace. Belize River is a 180-mile (290 km) river in Belize that drains more than one-quarter of the country as it winds along the northern edge of the Maya Mountains across the center of the country to the sea near Belize City. ... Look up pronunciation in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ...


Another account believes the early settlement of "Belize in the Bay of Honduras" grew from a few habitations located at Belize Town and St. George's Caye into a de-facto colony of the United Kingdom during the late 18th century. In the early 19th century the settlement was called British Honduras, and in 1871 it became a Crown Colony. Missing image Map of Belize, showing the Gulf of Honduras The Gulf or Bay of Honduras is a large inlet of the Belize, Honduras and Guatemala. ... Look up De facto in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... (17th century - 18th century - 19th century - more centuries) As a means of recording the passage of time, the 18th century refers to the century that lasted from 1701 through 1800. ... Alternative meaning: Nineteenth Century (periodical) (18th century — 19th century — 20th century — more centuries) As a means of recording the passage of time, the 19th century was that century which lasted from 1801-1900 in the sense of the Gregorian calendar. ... A United Kingdom overseas territory (formerly known as a dependent territory or earlier as a crown colony) is a territory that is under the sovereignty and formal control of the United Kingdom but is not part of the United Kingdom proper (Great Britain and Northern Ireland). ...


Taking advantage of Spain’s inability to establish control over present-day Belize, Englishmen began to cut logwood, a dyewood greatly valued in Europe as the principal dyestuff for the expanding wool industry. By the 1770s, a second tropical exotic timber, mahogany, replaced logwood as the main export from Belize. The economy of Belize remained based on the extraction of mahogany until the early 1900s when the cultivation of export crops such as citrus fruits, sugar cane, and bananas came to dominate the economy. Binomial name Haematoxylum campechianum The Logwood tree (Haematoxylum campechianum) was once an important source of red dye. ... This article is about the timber. ...


Hurricane Hattie inflicted significant damage upon Belize in 1961. The government decided that a coastal capital city lying below sea level was too risky. Over several years, the British colonial government designed a new capital, Belmopan, at the exact geographical centre of the country, and in 1970 began slowly moving the governing offices there. Hurricane Hattie was a powerful hurricane that hit Central America on Halloween, 1961. ... Belmopan, estimated population 12,300, is the capital of Belize. ...


British Honduras became a self-governing colony in January 1964 and was renamed "Belize" on June 1 1973; it was the United Kingdom's last colony on the American mainland. George Cadle Price led the country to full independence on September 21, 1981 after delays caused by territorial disputes with neighbouring Guatemala, which did not formally recognise the country. A self-governing colony is a colony with an elected legislature, in which politicians are able to make most decisions without reference to the colonial power with formal or nominal control of the colony. ... is the 152nd day of the year (153rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... George C. Price The Right Honourable George Cadle Price (born January 15, 1919) was the first Prime Minister of Belize and the architect of that countrys independence. ... is the 264th day of the year (265th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ...


Throughout Belize's history, Guatemala has claimed ownership of all or part of the territory. This claim is occasionally reflected in maps showing Belize as Guatemala's twenty-third province. As of March 2007, the border dispute with Guatemala remains unresolved and quite contentious;[2][3] at various times the issue has required mediation by the United Kingdom, Caribbean Community heads of Government, the Organisation of American States, and the United States. Since independence, a British garrison has been retained in Belize at the request of the Belizean government. Notably, both Guatemala and Belize are participating in the confidence-building measures approved by the OAS, including the Guatemala-Belize Language Exchange Project.[4] For other uses, see Map (disambiguation). ... A province is a territorial unit, almost always a country subdivision. ... Map showing CARICOM members, associates and observers Seat of Secretariat Georgetown, Guyana Official languages English4 Membership  15 full members1  5 associate members2  7 observers3 Leaders  -  Secretary-General Edwin W. Carrington (since 1992)  -  CARICOM Heads of Government   Establishment  -  August 1, 1973  Website http://www. ... The Organization of American States (OAS; OEA in the other three official languages) is an international organization, headquartered in Washington, D.C., USA. Its members are the 35 independent nations of the Americas. ...


In 2005, Belize was the site of unrest caused by discontent with the People's United Party government, including tax increases in the national budget. On February 8, 2008 Dean Barrow was sworn in as Belize's first black prime minister. An encounter between protesters and riot police in Belmopan on January 21, 2005 The 2005 protests in Belize are two separate but related incidents of civil unrest in the Central American nation, occurring in January and April. ... The Peoples United Party is the ruling Christian Democratic political party of Belize. ... Dean Oliver Barrow (born March 2, 1951) is a Belizean lawyer and politician and the leader of the United Democratic Party. ...


Politics

Protest on 21 January 2005.
Protest on 21 January 2005.
Main article: Politics of Belize

Belize is a parliamentary democracy and a member of the Commonwealth of Nations. ImageMetadata File history File links Download high resolution version (2288x1712, 605 KB) Belizian protests, 21st January 2005 Belizian protests, 21st January 2005 See also 2005 Belizian Protests File links The following pages link to this file: Belize 2005 Belize unrest Category: User-created public domain images ... ImageMetadata File history File links Download high resolution version (2288x1712, 605 KB) Belizian protests, 21st January 2005 Belizian protests, 21st January 2005 See also 2005 Belizian Protests File links The following pages link to this file: Belize 2005 Belize unrest Category: User-created public domain images ... É Politics of Belize takes place in a framework of a parliamentary representative democratic monarchy, whereby the Prime Minister is the head of government, and of a pluriform multi-party system. ... States currently utilizing parliamentary systems are denoted in red and orange—the former being constitutional monarchies where authority is vested in a parliament, the latter being parliamentary republics whose parliaments are effectively supreme over a separate head of state. ... The Commonwealth of Nations as of 2007 Headquarters Marlborough House, London, UK Official languages English Membership 53 sovereign states Leaders  -  Queen Elizabeth II  -  Secretary-General Kamalesh Sharma Appointed 24 November 2007 Establishment  -  Balfour Declaration 18 November 1926   -  Statute of Westminster 11 December 1931   -  London Declaration 28 April 1949  Area  -  Total...


The structure of government is based on the British parliamentary system, and the legal system is modeled on the common law of England. The current head of state is the Queen of Belize, Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom, who is represented in the country by the Governor-General. However, the cabinet, led by a prime minister, who is head of government, acting as advisors to the Governor-General, in practice exercise executive authority. Cabinet ministers are members of the majority political party in parliament and usually hold elected seats within it concurrent with their cabinet positions. Elizabeth II (Elizabeth Alexandra Mary Windsor; born 21 April 1926) is Queen of sixteen sovereign states, holding each crown and title equally. ... Alternate meanings in cabinet (disambiguation) A Cabinet is a body of high-ranking members of government, typically representing the executive branch. ... The government of Belize is directed by the Prime Minister. ... The head of government is the chief officer of the executive branch of a government, often presiding over a cabinet. ... Governor-General (or Governor General) is a term used both historically and currently to designate the appointed representative of a head of state or their government for a particular territory, historically in a colonial context, but no longer necessarily in that form. ...


The bicameral National Assembly of Belize is composed of a House of Representatives and a Senate. The twenty-nine members of the House are popularly elected to a maximum five-year term and introduce legislation affecting the development of Belize. The Governor-General appoints the twelve members of the Senate, with a Senate president selected by the members. The Senate is responsible for debating and approving bills passed by the House. The National Assembly of is the bicameral legislature of Belize. ... The House of Representatives of Belize is one of two chambers of the National Assembly, the other being the Senate. ... The Senate is one of the chambers of the National Assembly. ...


Belize is a full participating member of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM). Map showing CARICOM members, associates and observers Seat of Secretariat Georgetown, Guyana Official languages English4 Membership  15 full members1  5 associate members2  7 observers3 Leaders  -  Secretary-General Edwin W. Carrington (since 1992)  -  CARICOM Heads of Government   Establishment  -  August 1, 1973  Website http://www. ...


Districts and constituencies

Districts of Belize
Districts of Belize

Belize is divided into 6 districts: File links The following pages link to this file: Belize Districts of Belize Categories: GFDL images ... File links The following pages link to this file: Belize Districts of Belize Categories: GFDL images ... Districts of Belize Belize is divided into 6 districts. ... Belizes 6 districts are divided into 31 constituencies. ... Local government areas called districts are used, or have been used, in several countries. ...

  1. Belize District
  2. Cayo District
  3. Corozal District
  4. Orange Walk District
  5. Stann Creek District
  6. Toledo District

These districts are further divided into 31 constituencies. Belize District is a district of the nation of Belize, with its district capital in the nations largest city, Belize City. ... The Cayo District is a district in the west of the nation of Belize. ... The Corozal District is the northernmost district of the nation of Belize. ... Map of Belize showing Orange Walk District Orange Walk District is a district in the northwest of the nation of Belize, with its district capital in Orange Walk Town. ... The Stann Creek District is a district in the south east of the nation of Belize. ... The Toledo District is the southernmost district in the nation of Belize, with the district capital in the town of Punta Gorda, Belize. ...


Economy

The majority of the Belizean economy comprises the tourism industry. Agriculture is also a key part of the economy.
The majority of the Belizean economy comprises the tourism industry. Agriculture is also a key part of the economy.
Main article: Economy of Belize

According to the CIA World Factbook, Belize has the highest unemployment rate in Central America at 9.4%. The population living in poverty is at 33.5%. Download high resolution version (960x1280, 479 KB)A farmer inspects his hand-tended corn crop near San Pedro Columbia village, Belize. ... Download high resolution version (960x1280, 479 KB)A farmer inspects his hand-tended corn crop near San Pedro Columbia village, Belize. ... Tourist redirects here. ... The economy of Belize depended on forestry until well into the 20th century. ... World Factbook 2004 cover The World Factbook is an annual publication by the Central Intelligence Agency of the United States with basic almanac-style information about the various countries of the world. ... CIA figures for world unemployment rates, 2006 Unemployment is the state in which a person is without work, available to work, and is currently seeking work. ... For other uses, see Central America (disambiguation). ... A boy from an East Cipinang trash dump slum in Jakarta, Indonesia shows what he found. ...


The small, essentially private enterprise economy is based primarily on agriculture, agro-based industry, and merchandising, with tourism and construction assuming greater importance. Tourism has been, along with the sugar industry, the most important financial stronghold for Belize for decades. With the building of the port in Belize City, tourists can take cruises to the country and solely visit the tourist village that was built primarily for them. Sugar, the chief crop, accounts for nearly half of exports, while the banana industry is the country's largest employer. Citrus production has become a major industry along the Hummingbird Highway. More recently, discoveries of petroleum deposits in the Cayo District and possible deposits in the Toledo District have radically altered Belize's previously untapped mining and manufacturing capabilities. Tourist redirects here. ... For other uses, see Construction (disambiguation). ... This article is about sugar as food and as an important and widely-traded commodity. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... This article is being considered for deletion in accordance with Wikipedias deletion policy. ... The Hummingbird Highway as seen from atop the Blue Hole NP Observation tower The Hummingbird Highway is one of the four major highways in Belize. ... Petro redirects here. ... The Cayo District is a district in the west of the nation of Belize. ... The Toledo District is the southernmost district in the nation of Belize, with the district capital in the town of Punta Gorda, Belize. ...


The ruling government's big monetary and fiscal policies, initiated in September 1998, led to GDP growth of 6.4% in 1999 and 10.5% in 2000. Growth decelerated in 2001 to 3% because of the global slowdown and severe hurricane damage to agriculture, fishing and tourism. Growth in 2005 was 3.8%. Major concerns continue to be the rapidly expanding trade deficit and foreign debt. A key short-term objective remains the reduction of poverty with the help of international donors. GDP redirects here. ... This article is about weather phenomena. ... For the computer security term, see Phishing. ... Balance of trade figures are the sum of the money gained by a given economy by selling exports, minus the cost of buying imports. ... A boy from an East Cipinang trash dump slum in Jakarta, Indonesia shows what he found. ...


Demographics

Demographics of Belize, Data of FAO, year 2005 ; Number of inhabitants in thousands. ...

Ethnic groups

Colonisation, slavery, and immigration have played major roles in affecting the ethnic composition of the population and as a result, Belize is a country of numerous cultures, languages, and ethnic groups.[5][6][7] According to the latest census, the country's population is a little over 300,000. For the historic phenomenon of colonization and imperialism, see main article colonialism (and also decolonization). ... Slave redirects here. ... Image:1870 census Lindauer Weber 01. ...


The Mayan are thought to have been in Belize and the Yucatán region since the 500s AD. However, much of Belize's original Maya population was wiped out by disease and conflicts between tribes and with Europeans. Three Maya groups now inhabit the country: Yucatecs (who came from Yucatán, Mexico to escape the Caste War), Mopans (indigenous to Belize, but were forced out by the British; they returned from Guatemala to evade slavery), and Kekchi (also fled from slavery in Guatemala).[8] This article is about the contemporary indigenous peoples and cultures who descend from, or remain, speakers of the Mayan languages of southern Mesoamerica. ... Location within Mexico Country Capital Municipalities 106 Government  - Governor Ivonne Ortega Pacheco PRI  - Federal Deputies PAN: 4 PRI: 1  - Federal Senators Hugo Laviada (PAN) Alfredo Rodríguez (PAN) Cleominio Zoreda (PRI) Area Ranked 20th  - State 38,402 km²  (14,827. ... http://www. ...


White English and Scottish settlers entered the area in the 1630s to cut logwood for export and began settling. The first African slaves began arriving from Africa elsewhere in the Caribbean and began intermarrying with many of the other ethnic groups in the country; intermingling with whites was not common, however, this mixture created the Belizean Kriol people ethnic grouping. After 1800, Mestizo settlers from Mexico and Guatemala began to settle in the north; the Garifuna, a mix of African, Arawak and Carib ancestry, settled in the south by way of Honduras not long after that. During the 1860s a large influx of Indians and American Civil War veterans from Louisiana and other Southern states established Confederate settlements in British Honduras and introduced commercial sugar cane production to the colony, establishing eleven settlements in the interior. For other uses, see England (disambiguation). ... This article is about the country. ... The Buxton Memorial Fountain, celebrating the emancipation of slaves in the British Empire in 1834, London. ... West Indies redirects here. ... The Belizean Creole or Kriol are Creole descendants of African slaves who were brought primarily from Jamaica and Nicaraguas Mosquito Coast to cut down mahogany trees. ... Mestizo is a Spanish term that was formerly used in the Spanish Empire to designate people of mixed European (Spaniard) and Amerindian ancestry living in the region of Latin America. ... Garífuna refers to both the people and language of the Garínagu. ... World map showing location of Africa A satellite composite image of Africa Africa is the worlds second_largest continent in both area and population, after Asia. ... Arowak woman (John Gabriel Stedman) The term Arawak (from aru, the Lokono word for cassava flour), was used to designate the Amerindians encountered by the Spanish in the West Indies. ... Carib family (by John Gabriel Stedman) Drawing of a Carib woman Carib, Island Carib or Kalinago people, after whom the Caribbean Sea was named, live in the Lesser Antilles islands. ... The Confederate Settlements in British Honduras are a cultural and ethnic sub-group in Belize, formerly known as the colony of British Honduras. ...


The 1900s saw the arrival of Asian settlers from mainland China, India, Taiwan, Korea, Syria, and Lebanon. Central American immigrants and expatriate Americans and Africans also began to settle in the country. Meanwhile, Kriols and other ethnic groups immigrated to the United States and elsewhere for better opportunities. Estimates have generally placed the number of the Belizean diaspora, consisting mainly of Kriols and Garinagu, at a number roughly equal to the current residents of Belize. Asian people[1] is a demonym for people from Asia. ... This article is about the Korean civilization. ... Central America is the region of North America located between the southern border of Mexico and the northwest border of Colombia, in South America. ...


Self identified Mestizos comprise 50% of the population, Kriols 25%, indigenous Mayan 11%, and Garinagu 6%. The rest is a mix of Mennonite German farmers, East Indians, Chinese, other Central Americans, whites from the United States, and many other foreign groups brought to assist the country's development. Racial tension is rare because of constant admixture among the various ethnic groups. Mestizo is a Spanish term that was formerly used in the Spanish Empire to designate people of mixed European (Spaniard) and Amerindian ancestry living in the region of Latin America. ... The Belizean Creole or Kriol are Creole descendants of African slaves who were brought primarily from Jamaica and Nicaraguas Mosquito Coast to cut down mahogany trees. ... The term indigenous peoples has no universal, standard or fixed definition, but can be used about any ethnic group who inhabit the geographic region with which they have the earliest historical connection. ... This article is about the contemporary indigenous peoples and cultures who descend from, or remain, speakers of the Mayan languages of southern Mesoamerica. ... Garífuna refers to both the people and language of the Garínagu. ... Topics in Christianity Movements · Denominations Ecumenism · Relation to other religions Preaching · Prayer Music · Liturgy · Calendar Symbols · Art · Criticism Important figures Apostle Paul · Church Fathers Constantine · Athanasius · Augustine Anselm · Aquinas · Palamas Luther · Calvin · Wesley Arius · Marcion of Sinope Archbishop of Canterbury · Pope Coptic Pope · Ecumenical Patriarch Christianity Portal This box:      The... This article or section does not cite any references or sources. ...


Languages

English is the official language because Belize was a British colony and retains ties to Britain. However, most Belizeans use the more familiar Belize Kriol, an English-based creole. Spanish is the mother tongue of Mestizo and Central American settlers, and is a second language for much of the country. Less well known are the ancient Maya dialects, Garifuna (which is Arawakan based, with elements of the Carib language, French, and Spanish) and the Plautdietsch dialect of the Mennonites. Literacy currently stands at nearly 80%. In 2001 UNESCO declared the Garifuna language, dance and music a "Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity". The English language is a West Germanic language that originates in England. ... Belizean Creole, also called Belizean Kriol or Kriol , is closely related to Miskito Coastal Creole, Rio Abajo Creole, Colón Creole, and San Andrés and Providencia Creole. ... A creole language, or simply a creole, is a stable language that originates seemingly as a new language, sometimes with features that are not inherited from any apparent source, without however qualifying in any appreciable way as a mixed language. ... Garífuna refers to both the people and language of the Garínagu. ... The Arawakan languages are an indigenous language family of South America and the Caribbean. ... Carib family (by John Gabriel Stedman) Drawing of a Carib woman Carib, Island Carib or Kalinago people, after whom the Caribbean Sea was named, live in the Lesser Antilles islands. ... Plautdietsch or Mennonite Low German, is a language (or groups of dialects of Low German) spoken in Canada, the United States, Mexico, Brazil, Bolivia, Paraguay, Honduras, Belize, and Argentina by over 300,000 Mennonites, members of a religious group that fled from Holland and Belgium in the 1500s to escape... UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) is a specialized agency of the United Nations established in 1945. ... Map showing the distribution of Masterpieces of Oral and Intangible Heritage by State Parties as of 2005. ...

Languages in Belize according to 2000 census
Language Mother tongue speakers Percentage Current users Percentage
Chinese 1,607 (0.8%) 1,529 (0.7%)
Creole 67,527 (32.9%) 75,822 (37.0%)
English 7,946 (3.9%) 11,551 (5.6%)
Garifuna 6,929 (3.4%) 4,071 (2.0%)
German 6,783 (3.3%) 6,624 (3.2%)
Hindi 280 (0.1%) 193 (0.1%)
Maya Ketchi 10,142 (4.9%) 9,314 (4.5%)
Maya Mopan 6,909 (3.4%) 6,093 (3.0%)
Maya Yucateco 1,176 (0.6%) 613 (0.3%)
Spanish 94,422 (46.0%) 88,121 (43.0%)
Others / no answer 1,402 (0.7%) 1,192 (0.6%)

Religion

Religious freedom is guaranteed in Belize. It is a predominantly Christian society, with 49.6% of Belizeans Roman Catholic, and 27% Protestant. [1] Much of the remaining population is comprised of Taoists, Buddhists and more recently introduced religions such as Jainism, Islam, and Bahá'í[citation needed]. Hinduism is followed by most Indian immigrants, while Islam is common among Middle Eastern immigrants and has gained a following among Kriols and Garifuna. Catholics frequently visit the country for special gospel revivals. There is also Eastern Orthodoxy in Santa Elena [2]. Jehovah's Witnesses have experienced a significant increase in membership in recent years. According to the Witnesses, around 3% of the population attended at least one religious meeting in 2007[3]. For other uses, see Christian (disambiguation). ... For other uses of the words tao and dao, see Dao (disambiguation). ... Statues of Buddha such as this, the Tian Tan Buddha statue in Hong Kong, remind followers to practice right living. ... Jain and Jaina redirect here. ... For people named Islam, see Islam (name). ... This article is about the generally recognized global religious community. ... Hinduism is a religious tradition[1] that originated in the Indian subcontinent. ... For people named Islam, see Islam (name). ... ... view of part of San Ignacio Cayo San Ignacio Cayo is a town in the west of the nation of Belize; it is capital of Belizes Cayo District. ... Jehovahs Witnesses (JW) are members of a worldwide Christian denomination. ...


Birth and death rates and life expectancy

Caye Caulker
Caye Caulker

Belize's birth rate currently stands at nearly 25/1000. Nearly 6 people die per year out of 1,000 members of the population; this figure includes murders, accidents and death from natural causes. Infant mortality, now at 24 deaths per thousand people, has been improving over the last century. Male babies are more likely to die than females. The life expectancy of a typical male is 66 years, while for a female it is 70. HIV/AIDS, while not a serious threat to national stability, does affect enough of the population to give Belize a high infection rating among Caribbean and Central American nations. Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (1632x1224, 854 KB) Summary Caye Caulker main street, Dec. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (1632x1224, 854 KB) Summary Caye Caulker main street, Dec. ...


Belize has a relatively young and growing population. Its birth rate is among the highest in the world and there are indications that this trend will continue for the foreseeable future.


National symbols

Black Orchid

A black orchid
A black orchid
Further information: Black orchid

The national flower of Belize is the black orchid (Prosthechea cochleata, also known as Encyclia cochleata). [9] Black Orchid, the national flower of Belize Belizian 23:09, 2004 Feb 8 (UTC) File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Black Orchid, the national flower of Belize Belizian 23:09, 2004 Feb 8 (UTC) File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Lets us talks some realities here before we get into the fictional works here. ...


See also

Embassy of Belize in Washington DC Belize is a small country located in Central America bordering Mexico and Guatemala. ... Belizes 6 districts are divided into 31 constituencies. ... Communications in Belize Telephones - main lines in use: 29,600 ( 1996) Telephones - mobile cellular: 1,237 ( 1995) Telephone system: above-average system (expensive). ... Belizes principal external concern has been the dispute involving the Guatemalan claim to Belizean territory. ... The official language of Belize is English and sole language of instruction in its school systems. ... The Confederate Settlements in British Honduras are a cultural and ethnic sub-group in Belize, formerly known as the colony of British Honduras. ... What is now Belize was part of the heartland of the Pre-Columbian Maya civilization. ... Military branches: Belize Defence Force is responsible for protecting the soverignty of the former British colony of Belize. ... The Flora and vegetation of Belize are most similar to the forests of the Peten (Guatemala) and the Yucatan (Mexico). ... Flora and fauna of Belize New pictures added August 28 2004 This is a central respository of pictures related to the jungles of Belize. ... List of some endemic species of Belize. ... Image:Big Creek Port Belize Central America. ... The Scout Association of Belize, the national Scouting organization of Belize, was founded in 1911, and became a member of the World Organization of the Scout Movement in 1987. ... The University of Belize is an English-speaking multi-location institution of higher education, and the national university of the Central American country of Belize. ... ‹ The template below is being considered for deletion. ... Belize is a small country in Central America, and its culture is a mix of Mestizo, Maya, British and African influences. ... Sports in Belize details the developing of sporting disciplines in Belize. ... There are very few or no other articles that link to this one. ...

References

  1. ^ Maya Archaeological Sites of Belize, Belize History
  2. ^ Nation News 2006
  3. ^ ACP-EU summit 2000
  4. ^ Guatemala-Belize Language Exchange Project
  5. ^ Volz, Joe and Coy, Cissie, "Belize: Central American Jewel," on aarp.org
  6. ^ Smith, Vicki (2007), "Belize beckons with unspoiled Caribbean isles, friendly faces, rich marine life," The San Diego Union-Tribune, February 18, 2007, at SignOnSanDiego.com
  7. ^ Link, Matthew R. (2002), "Central America's perfect, penny-pinching blend of island beaches, virgin rain forest, and Maya mysteries,", Budget Travel, January/February 2002 issue at budgettravelonline.com
  8. ^ Cho, Julian (1998). Maya Homeland. University of California Berkeley Geography Department and the Toledo Maya of Southern Belize. Retrieved 4 January 2007.
  9. ^ "National Symbols of Belize" Council on Diplomacy, Washington, DC and Consulate General of Belize. Retrieved 5 February 2008.

Further reading

  • Belize In Focus: A Guide to the People, Politics and Culture Ian Peedle
  • Belize: A Concise History P. A. B. Thomson
  • Belize: Land of the Free By The Carib Sea Thor Janson
  • Belize: Reefs, Rain Forests, and Mayan Ruins Dick Lutz
  • Confederate Settlements in British Honduras Donald C.Simmons, Jr.
  • Education and Multi-cultural Cohesion in Belize, 1931-1981 Peter Ronald Hitchen Unpublished PhD Thesis. University of Central Lancashire, England. April 2002.
  • Escaping the Rat Race - Freedom in Paradise: Real-life Stories About Living, Working, Investing, and Retiring in Belize by Dr. Helga Peham, 2007.
  • Fodor's Guide: Belize and Guatemala
  • Formerly British Honduras: A Profile of a New Nation of Belize William David Stetzekorn
  • Insight Guide: Belize Huw Hennessy
  • Lonely Planet World Guide: Belize Carolyn Miller Caelstrom and Debra Miller
  • The Making of Belize Anne Sutherland
  • Moon Handbooks: Belize Chicki Mallan and Joshua Berman
  • Our Man in Belize: A Memoir Richard Timothy Conroy
  • The Guatemalan Claim to Belize: A Handbook on the Negotiations James S. Murphy
  • The Rough Guide: Belize Peter Eltringham
  • Time Among the Maya: Travels in Belize, Guatemala and Mexico Ronald Wright
  • Thirteen Chapters of A History of Belize Assad Shoman
  • Traveller's Wildlife Guide: Belize and Northern Guatemala Les Beletsky
  • Handbook of British Honduras: Henry Edney Conrad Cain and Monrad Sigfried Metzgen
  • Monrad Sigfried Metzgen: Notes on British Honduras.
  • Monrad Sigfried Metzgen: Shoulder to Shoulder or the Battle of St George's Caye, 1798.

External links

Find more about Belize on Wikipedia's sister projects:
Dictionary definitions
Textbooks
Quotations
Source texts
Images and media
News stories
Learning resources
  • Government of Belize - Official governmental site
  • Garifuna.org - News, History and Culture of the Garifuna People of Belize
  • Belize National Emergency Management Organization - Official governmental site
  • Belize Tourism Board - Official Tourism site
  • belizesearch.com - A search engine for Belize related materials
  • Encyclopaedia Britannica Belize's Country Page
  • Belize information on globalEDGE
  • Amandala Online Newspaper - Belize Online Newspaper
  • Belize entry at The World Factbook

  Results from FactBites:
 
Belize! Caribbean adventure holiday vacation - travel, culture, Maya, dive, snorkel, fish, cave, hike! (413 words)
The stable, democratic, English-speaking country of Belize lies in the western Caribbean on the coast of Central America.
Belize is home to an interesting mix of over ten different cultures including Garifuna, Maya, Creole, Mestizo, East Indian, and German Mennonites.
Belize also lays claim to hundreds of ancient Maya temples, large tracts of intact tropical rainforest, and this hemisphere's longest barrier reef.
Belize - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (2069 words)
Belize is a small bed pan on the eastern coast of Central America, on the Caribbean Sea bordered by Mexico to the northwest, Guatemala to the west and south, and Honduras 75 km away (47 miles) across the Gulf of Honduras to the east.
Belize is a parliamentary democracy and a member of the Commonwealth of Nations.
Belize is located between the Hondo and Sarstoon Rivers, with the Belize River flowing down in the centre of the country.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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