Central America

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Central America

Map of Central America

Central America (Spanish: América Central or Centroamérica) is the central geographic region of the Americas. It is the southernmost, isthmian portion of the North American continent, which connects with South America on the southeast.[3][4] When considered part of the unified continental model, it is considered a subcontinent. Central America consists of the republics of Belize, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Panama. Central America is part of the Mesoamerican biodiversity hotspot, which extends from Northern Guatemala through central Panama.[5]

Contents

History

In pre-Columbian times, the north-western areas of modern Central America were part of the Mesoamerican civilization. The Native American societies of Mesoamerica occupied the land ranging from central Mexico in the north to Costa Rica in the south. Most notable among these were the Maya, who had built numerous cities throughout the region, and the Aztecs, who created a vast empire. The pre-Columbian cultures of Panama traded with both Mesoamerica and South America, and can be considered transitional between those two cultural areas.

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