Portugal ORIGINS OF PORTUGAL
Source: The Library of Congress Country Studies
The Iberian Peninsula is a geographic unit that contains a number of distinct regions based on climate and geomorphology, such as Andalusia, Castile, Galicia, and Lusitania. Lusitania, which now encompasses the modern nation-state of Portugal, is generally set off from the other regions of the peninsula by areas of higher elevation that run parallel to the Atlantic coast, greater rainfall, and a more moderate climate. It was this regional distinctiveness, as well as the internal geography of Lusitania--largely open to the south but hemmed in by mountains on the east and the Atlantic Ocean on the west--that gave rise to a culturally and socially distinct people, the Portuguese, and later to an independent nation-state, Portugal.
Data as of January 1993
NOTE: The information regarding Portugal on this page is re-published from The Library of Congress Country Studies. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Portugal ORIGINS OF PORTUGAL information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Portugal ORIGINS OF PORTUGAL should be addressed to the Library of Congress.