EtymologyThe name of the country may be derived from ''Birú'', the name of a local ruler who lived near the , Panama City, in the early 16th century. Spanish s, who arrived in 1522, believed this was the southernmost part of the . When Francisco Pizarro">6c: from ...
Prehistory and Pre-Columbian PeruThe earliest evidences of human presence in Peruvian territory have been dated to approximately 12,500 in the settlement. Scientific studies of the DNA of Amazon populations which extend even to Peru, show admixture from n groups. Andean societies were based on agriculture, using techniques such as and terracing; husbandry and fishing were also important. Organization relied on and redistribution because these societies had no notion of market or money. The oldest known complex society in Peru, the Caral/Norte Chico civilization, flourished along the coast of the Pacific Ocean between 3,000 and 1,800 BCE. These early developments were followed by archaeological cultures that developed mostly around the coastal and Andean regions throughout Peru. The culture which flourished from around 1000 to 200 BCE along what is now Peru's Pacific Coast was an example of early pre-Inca culture. The that developed from 1500 to 300 BCE was probably more of a religious than a political phenomenon, with their religious center in . After the decline of the Chavin culture around the beginning of the 1st century CE, a series of localized and specialized cultures rose and fell, both on the coast and in the highlands, during the next thousand years. On the coast, these included the civilizations of the Paracas, , Wari, and the more outstanding and Moche. The Moche, who reached their apogee in the first millennium CE, were renowned for their irrigation system which fertilized their arid terrain, their sophisticated ceramic pottery, their lofty buildings, and clever metalwork. The Chimu were the great city builders of pre-Inca civilization; as a loose confederation of walled cities scattered along the coast of northern Peru, the Chimu flourished from about 1140 to 1450. Their capital was at outside of modern-day Trujillo. In the highlands, both the culture, near in both Peru and Bolivia, and the Wari culture, near the present-day city of , developed large urban settlements and wide-ranging state systems between 500 and 1000 CE.In the 15th century, the emerged as a powerful state which, in the span of a century, formed the in the pre-Columbian Americas with their capital in . The Incas of Cusco originally represented one of the small and relatively minor ethnic groups, the . Gradually, as early as the thirteenth century, they began to expand and incorporate their neighbors. Inca expansion was slow until about the middle of the fifteenth century, when the pace of conquest began to accelerate, particularly under the rule of the emperor . Under his rule and that of his son, , the Incas came to control most of the Andean region, with a population of 9 to 16 million inhabitants under their rule. Pachacuti also promulgated a comprehensive code of laws to govern his far-flung empire, while consolidating his absolute temporal and spiritual authority as the God of the Sun who ruled from a magnificently rebuilt Cusco. From 1438 to 1533, the Incas used a variety of methods, from conquest to peaceful assimilation, to incorporate a large portion of western South America, centered on the mountain ranges, from southern Colombia to northern Chile, between the Pacific Ocean in the west and the Amazon rainforest in the east. The official language of the empire was , although hundreds of local languages and dialects were spoken. The Inca referred to their empire as ''Tawantinsuyu'' which can be translated as "The Four Regions" or "The Four United Provinces." Many local forms of worship persisted in the empire, most of them concerning local sacred '' s'', but the Inca leadership encouraged the worship of , the sun god and imposed its sovereignty above other cults such as that of . The Incas considered their King, the , to be the " child of the sun."
Conquest and colonial periodAtahualpa (also Atahuallpa), the last , became emperor when he defeated and executed his older half-brother in a civil war sparked by the death of their father, Inca Huayna Capac. In December 1532, a party of '' s'' (supported by the s, Huancas, s and Chachapoyas as ) led by defeated and captured the Inca Emperor Atahualpa in the . The Spanish conquest of Peru was one of the most important campaigns in the . After years of preliminary exploration and military conflicts, it was the first step in a long campaign that took decades of fighting but ended in Spanish victory and colonization of the region known as the with its capital at , which was then known as "La Ciudad de los Reyes" (The City of Kings). The conquest of Peru led to spin-off campaigns throughout the viceroyalty as well as expeditions towards the Amazon Basin as in the case of Spanish efforts to quell Amerindian resistance. The last Inca resistance was suppressed when the Spaniards annihilated the in Vilcabamba in 1572. The Indigenous population dramatically collapsed overwhelmingly due to epidemic diseases introduced by the Spanish as well as exploitation and socio-economic change. Viceroy reorganized the country in the 1570s with gold and silver mining as its main economic activity and Amerindian as its primary workforce. With the discovery of the great silver and gold lodes at (present-day Bolivia) and , the viceroyalty flourished as an important provider of mineral resources. Peruvian provided revenue for the Spanish Crown and fueled a complex trade network that extended as far as Europe and the Philippines. The commercial and population exchanges between Latin America and Asia undergone via the s transiting through Acapulco, had at Peru as the furthest endpoint of the trade route in the Americas. In relation to this, Don Sebastian Hurtado de Corcuera, governor of Panama was also responsible for settling in the Philippines, which now speak a by employing Peruvian soldiers and colonists. Because of lack of available workforce, were added to the labor population. The expansion of a colonial administrative apparatus and bureaucracy paralleled the economic reorganization. With the conquest started the spread of Christianity in South America; most people were forcefully converted to , with Spanish clerics believing like Puritan divines of English colonies later that the Native Peoples "had been corrupted by the Devil, who was working "through them to frustrate" their foundations. It only took a generation to convert the population. They built churches in every city and replaced some of the Inca temples with churches, such as the in the city of Cusco. The church employed the , making use of torture to ensure that newly converted Catholics did not stray to other religions or beliefs, and monastery schools, educating girls, especially of the Inca nobility and upper class, "until they were old enough either to profess o become a nunor to leave the monastery and assume the role ('estado') in the Christian society that their fathers planned to erect" in Peru. Peruvian Catholicism follows the found in many Latin American countries, in which religious native rituals have been integrated with Christian celebrations.Conquest and Colony of Peru. In this endeavor, the church came to play an important role in the of the Natives, drawing them into the cultural orbit of the Spanish settlers. By the 18th century, declining silver production and economic diversification greatly diminished royal income. In response, the Crown enacted the , a series of s that increased taxes and partitioned the . The new laws provoked Túpac Amaru II's rebellion and other revolts, all of which were suppressed. As a result of these and other changes, the Spaniards and their creole successors came to monopolize control over the land, seizing many of the best lands abandoned by the massive native depopulation. However, the Spanish did not resist the Portuguese expansion of Brazil across the meridian. The was rendered meaningless between 1580 and 1640 while Spain controlled Portugal. The need to ease communication and trade with Spain led to the split of the viceroyalty and the creation of new viceroyalties of and at the expense of the territories that formed the ; this reduced the power, prominence and importance of Lima as the viceroyal capital and shifted the lucrative trade to and , while the fall of the mining and textile production accelerated the progressive decay of the Viceroyalty of Peru. Eventually, the viceroyalty would dissolve, as with much of the Spanish empire, when challenged by national independence movements at the beginning of the nineteenth century. These movements led to the formation of the majority of modern-day countries of South America in the territories that at one point or another had constituted the Viceroyalty of Peru. The conquest and colony brought a mix of cultures and ethnicities that did not exist before the Spanish conquered the Peruvian territory. Even though many of the Inca traditions were lost or diluted, new customs, traditions and knowledge were added, creating a rich mixed Peruvian culture. Two of the most important Indigenous rebellions against the Spanish were that of in 1742, and Rebellion of in 1780 around the highlands near Cuzco.
IndependenceIn the early 19th century, while most South American nations were swept by , Peru remained a stronghold. As the elite vacillated between emancipation and loyalty to the Spanish Monarchy, was achieved only after the occupation by military campaigns of and . The economic crises, the loss of power of Spain in Europe, the war of independence in North America, and Native uprisings all contributed to a favorable climate to the development of emancipation ideas among the C''riollo'' population in South America. However, the Criollo oligarchy in Peru enjoyed privileges and remained loyal to the Spanish Crown. The liberation movement started in Argentina where autonomous juntas were created as a result of the loss of authority of the Spanish government over its colonies. After fighting for the independence of the Viceroyalty of Rio de la Plata, created the and crossed the Andes in 21 days. Once in Chile, he joined forces with Chilean army General and liberated the country in the battles of and Maipú in 1818. On 7 September 1820, a fleet of eight warships arrived in the port of Paracas under the command of General José de San Martin and , who was serving in the Chilean Navy. Immediately on 26 October, they took control of the town of . San Martin settled in on 12 November, where he established his headquarters while Cochrane sailed north and blockaded the port of in Lima. At the same time in the north, was occupied by rebel forces under the command of Gregorio Escobedo. Because Peru was the stronghold of the Spanish government in South America, San Martin's strategy to liberate Peru was to use diplomacy. He sent representatives to Lima urging the that Peru be granted independence, however, all negotiations proved unsuccessful. The Viceroy of Peru, Joaquín de la Pazuela named commander-in-chief of the loyalist army to protect Lima from the threatened invasion by San Martin. On 29 January, de la Serna organized a coup against de la Pazuela, which was recognized by Spain and he was named Viceroy of Peru. This internal power struggle contributed to the success of the liberating army. To avoid a military confrontation, San Martin met the newly appointed viceroy, José de la Serna, and proposed to create a , a proposal that was turned down. De la Serna abandoned the city, and on 12 July 1821, San Martin occupied Lima and declared Peruvian independence on 28 July 1821. He created the first Peruvian flag. (Bolivia) remained as a Spanish stronghold until the army of liberated it three years later. José de San Martin was declared Protector of Peru. Peruvian national identity was forged during this period, as Bolivarian projects for a Latin American Confederation floundered and a union with Bolivia proved ephemeral. Simon Bolivar launched his campaign from the north, liberating the in the Battles of in 1821 and Pichincha a year later. In July 1822, Bolivar and San Martin gathered in the Guayaquil Conference. Bolivar was left in charge of fully liberating Peru while San Martin retired from politics after the first parliament was assembled. The newly founded Peruvian Congress named Bolivar dictator of Peru, giving him the power to organize the military. With the help of , they defeated the larger Spanish army in the on 6 August 1824 and the decisive on 9 December of the same year, consolidating the independence of Peru and Alto Peru. Alto Peru was later established as Bolivia. During the early years of the Republic, endemic struggles for power between military leaders caused political instability.
19th centuryFrom the 1840s to the 1860s, Peru enjoyed a period of stability under the presidency of , through increased state revenues from exports. However, by the 1870s, these resources had been depleted, the country was heavily indebted, and political in-fighting was again on the rise. Peru embarked on a railroad-building program that helped but also bankrupted the country. In 1879, Peru entered the which lasted until 1884. Bolivia invoked its alliance with Peru against Chile. The tried to mediate the dispute by sending a diplomatic team to negotiate with the Chilean government, but the committee concluded that war was inevitable. Chile declared war on 5 April 1879. Almost five years of war ended with the loss of the and the provinces of and , in the Atacama region. Two outstanding military leaders throughout the war were and . Originally Chile committed to a referendum for the cities of Arica and Tacna to be held years later, to self determine their national affiliation. However, Chile refused to apply the Treaty, and neither of the countries could determine the statutory framework. After the War of the Pacific, an extraordinary effort of rebuilding began. The government started to initiate a number of social and economic reforms to recover from the damage of the war. Political stability was achieved only in the early 1900s.
20th centuryInternal struggles after the war were followed by a period of stability under the , which lasted until the onset of the authoritarian regime of Augusto B. Leguía. The caused the downfall of Leguía, renewed political turmoil, and the emergence of the (APRA). The rivalry between this organization and a coalition of the elite and the military defined Peruvian politics for the following three decades. A final peace treaty in 1929, signed between Peru and Chile called the , returned to Peru. Between 1932 and 1933, Peru was engulfed in a year-long war with Colombia over a territorial dispute involving the and its capital Leticia. Later, in 1941, Peru and Ecuador fought the , after which the sought to formalize the boundary between those two countries. In a military coup on 29 October 1948, General became president. Odría's presidency was known as the ''Ochenio''. He came down hard on APRA, momentarily pleasing the oligarchy and all others on the right, but followed a course that won him great favor with the poor and lower classes. A thriving economy allowed him to indulge in expensive but crowd-pleasing social policies. At the same time, however, were severely restricted and corruption was rampant throughout his regime. Odría was succeeded by . However, widespread allegations of fraud prompted the Peruvian military to depose Prado and install a military junta, led by Ricardo Pérez Godoy. Godoy ran a short transitional government and held new elections in 1963, which were won by who assumed presidency until 1968. Belaúnde was recognized for his commitment to the democratic process. In 1968, the Armed Forces, led by General , staged a coup against Belaúnde. Alvarado's regime undertook radical reforms aimed at fostering development, but failed to gain widespread support. In 1975, General forcefully replaced Velasco, paralyzed reforms, and oversaw the reestablishment of democracy. Peru engaged in a brief successful conflict with Ecuador in the as a result of territorial dispute between the two countries. After the country experienced chronic inflation, the Peruvian currency, the sol, was replaced by the '' '' in mid-1985, which itself was replaced by the nuevo sol in July 1991, at which time the new sol had a cumulative value of one billion old soles. The per capita annual income of Peruvians fell to $720 (below the level of 1960) and Peru's GDP dropped 20% at which national reserves were a negative $900 million. The economic turbulence of the time acerbated social tensions in Peru and partly contributed to the rise of violent rebel rural insurgent movements, like (Shining Path) and MRTA, which caused great havoc throughout the country. Concerned about the economy, the increasing terrorist threat from Sendero Luminoso and MRTA, and allegations of official corruption, assumed the presidency in 1990. Fujimori implemented drastic measures that caused inflation to drop from 7,650% in 1990 to 139% in 1991 and 57% in 1992. Faced with opposition to his reform efforts, Fujimori dissolved Congress, suspended the judiciary, arrested several opposition leaders and assumed full powers in the '' auto-golpe'' ("self-coup") of 5 April 1992. He then revised the constitution; called new congressional elections; and implemented substantial economic reform, including privatization of numerous state-owned companies, creation of an investment-friendly climate, and sound management of the economy. Fujimori's administration was dogged by groups, most notably the Sendero Luminoso (also called the Shining Path), who carried out terrorist campaigns across the country throughout the 1980s and 1990s. Fujimori cracked down on the insurgents and was successful in largely quelling them by the late 1990s, but the fight was marred by atrocities committed by both the Peruvian security forces and the insurgents: the and La Cantuta massacre by Government paramilitary groups, and the bombings of Tarata and Frecuencia Latina by Sendero Luminoso. Those incidents subsequently came to symbolize the violations committed in the last years of violence. During early 1995, once again Peru and Ecuador clashed in the , but in 1998 the governments of both nations signed a peace treaty that clearly demarcated the international boundary between them. In November 2000, Fujimori resigned from office and went into a self-imposed exile, avoiding prosecution for human rights violations and corruption charges by the new Peruvian authorities.
21st century, and political turmoilSince the end of the Fujimori regime, Peru has tried to fight corruption while sustaining economic growth. In spite of human rights progress since the time of insurgency, many problems are still visible and show the continued marginalization of those who suffered through the violence of the Peruvian conflict. A caretaker government presided over by took on the responsibility of conducting new presidential and congressional elections. Afterwards became president in 2001 to 2006. On 28 July 2006, former president became President of Peru after winning the 2006 elections. In May 2008, Peru became a member of the . In April 2009, former president was convicted of human rights violations and to 25 years in prison for his role in killings and kidnappings by the during his government's battle against leftist guerrillas in the 1990s. On 5 June 2011, was elected president. During his presidency, Prime Minister and her cabinet were successfully censured, which was the first time in 50 years that a cabinet had been forced to resign from the Peruvian legislature. In 2016, was elected, though his government was short-lived as he in 2018 amid various controversies surrounding his administration. Vice president then assumed office in March 2018 with generally favorable approval ratings. Alan García was involved in the scandal and as police tried to arrest him, he committed suicide on 17 April 2019. Later that year, in July, police arrested Alejandro Toledo in California. Amid the crisis, on 30 September 2019, President Vizcarra dissolved the congress, and elections were held on 26 January 2020. The first case of was confirmed on 6 March 2020. During the COVID-19 pandemic in Peru, most Peruvians were under a by president Martin Vizcarra. However, an economic crisis triggered by the pandemic led to his removal from the presidency, seen by many as a coup by , and the far-right government of , the new president, received a lot of backlash. sprang across the country, and after five days, Merino resigned. He was replaced by . Sagasti led a provisional, centrist government, and enforced many of Vizcarra's former policies. were held on 11 April 2021, and of the Free Peru party won the first round, followed closely by . On 28 July 2021, Pedro Castillo was sworn in as the new after a narrow win in a tightly contested run-off election. The new Peruvian president Castillo appointed Guido Bellido, a member of Free Peru Party, as prime minister.
Government and politicsPeru is a with a . The country has maintained a system under its 1993 Constitution, which replaced a that leaned the government to a federation to authorize more power to the President. It is also a , in which the central government holds the most power and can create s. The Peruvian system of government combines elements derived from the political systems of the United States (a , an autonomous , and a ) and the (a congress, a and ministry system, and a strong executive). The Peruvian government is separated into three branches: * Legislature: the unicameral , consisting of 130 members of Congress (on a basis of population), the President of Congress, and the Permanent Commission; * Executive: the , the , which in practice controls domestic legislation and serve as a Cabinet to the President, consisting of the and 18 ministers of the state; * Judiciary: the , also known as the Royal Audencia of Lima, composed of 18 including a Supreme Justice, along with 28 superior courts, 195 trial courts, and 1,838 district courts. Under its constitution, the Presidential system, President is both head of state and head of government, government and is elected to a five-year term without immediate reelection. The President appoints Council of Ministers of Peru, ministers who oversee the 18 Cabinet of Peru, ministries of the state, including the Prime Minister of Peru, Prime Minister, into the Cabinet of Peru, Cabinet. The constitution designates minimal authority to the Prime Minister, who presides over Cabinet (government), cabinet meetings in which ministers advise the President and acts as a spokesperson on behalf of the Executive (government), executive branch. The President is also able to pose Motion of confidence, questions of confidence to the Congress of Peru, and consequently order the Dissolution of parliament, dissolution of congress, done in 1992 Peruvian constitutional crisis, 1992 by and in 2019–20 Peruvian constitutional crisis, 2019 by . In the , there are 130 Members of Congress from 25 s, determined by respective population, elected to five-year terms. Bills are proposed by the executive and Legislature, legislative powers and become law through a Plurality voting, plurality vote in Congress. The judiciary is nominally independent, though political intervention into judicial matters has been common throughout history. The Congress of Peru can also pass a motion of no confidence, censure ministers, as well as initiate impeachments and convict executives, in an effort to balance power between the executive and Legislature, legislative branches. The Legislature, legislative body in recent times has passed semi-successful impeachments, including that of in 2000 and in 2018, causing Kuczynski to Resignation of Pedro Pablo Kuczynski, resign. Peru's electoral system uses compulsory voting for citizens from the age of 18 to 70, including Multiple citizenship, dual-citizens and Peruvians abroad. Members of Congress are directly elected by Constituent state, constituents in respective districts through Proportional representation, proportional voting. The is elected in a general election, along with the Vice President of Peru, Vice President, through a majority in a two-round system. Elections are observed and organized by the National Jury of Elections, National Office of Electoral Processes, and the National Registry of Identification and Civil Status. Peru uses a for congressional and general elections. Major groups that have formed governments, both on a federal and legislative level, are parties that have historically adopted economic liberalism, progressivism, right-wing populism (specifically Fujimorism), nationalism, and reformism. The 2021 Peruvian general election, most recent general election was held on 11 April 2021 and resulted in Free Peru winning the most seats in Congress, although it fell well short of a majority. A presidential runoff between and took place on 5 June 2021 and resulted in the victory of Castillo.
Allegations of corruption in politicsExceptionally many President of Peru, Presidents of Peru have been ousted from office or imprisoned on allegations of corruption over the past three decades. Alberto Fujimori is serving a 25-year sentence in prison for commanding s that killed civilians in a counterinsurgency campaign during his tenure (1990-2000). He was later also found guilty of corruption. Former president Alan García (1985-1990 and 2006–2011) committed suicide in April 2019 when Peruvian police arrived to arrest him over allegations he participated in Odebrecht Case, Odebrecht bribery scheme. Former president Alejandro Toledo is accused of allegedly receiving bribe from Brazilian construction firm Odebrecht during his government (2001-2006). Former president Ollanta Humala (2011-2016) is also under investigation for allegedly receiving bribe from Odebrecht during his presidential election campaign. Humala's successor Pedro Pablo Kuczynski (2016-2018) remains under house arrest while prosecutors investigate him for favoring contracts with Odebrecht. Former president Martín Vizcarra (2018-2020) was ousted by Congress after media reports alleged he had received bribes while he was a regional governor years earlier.
Regions and territoriesPeru is divided into 26 units: Regions of Peru#History, 24 departments, the Constitutional Province of Callao and the Lima Province, Province of Lima (LIM) — which is independent of any region and serves as the Capital city, country's capital. Under the constitution, the 24 departments plus Callao Province have an elected "regional" government composed of the regional governor and the Regions of Peru, regional council. The Governor constitutes the Executive (government), executive body, proposes budgets, and creates Decrees, resolutions, and regional programs. The Regional Council, the region's Legislature, legislative body, debates and votes on budgets, supervises regional officials, and can vote to remove the governor, deputy governor, or any member of the council from office. The Regional Governor and the Regional Council serve a term of four years, without immediate reelection. These governments plan regional development, execute public investment projects, promote economic activities, and manage public property. Provinces, such as the province of , are administered by a municipal council, headed by a mayor. The goal of devolving power to regional and municipal governments was among others to improve popular participation. NGOs played an important role in the decentralization process and still influence local politics. Some areas of Peru are defined as List of metropolitan areas of Peru, metropolitan areas which overlap district areas. The largest of them, the Lima metropolitan area, is the seventh-List of metropolitan areas in the Americas, largest metropolis in the Americas.
Military and law enforcementPeru has the fourth largest military in Latin America. Peru's armed forces—the Peruvian Armed Forces, Armed Forces of Peru—comprise the Peruvian Navy (MGP), the Peruvian Army (EP), and the Peruvian Air Force (FAP), in total numbering 392,660 personnel (including 120,660 regulars and 272,000 reservists) as of 2020. Their primary mission is to safeguard the independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity of the country. Their functions are separated by branch: * The Peruvian Army is made up of the Chief of Staff, two Control Bodies, two Support Bodies, five Military Regions and six Command Rooms. * The Peruvian Air Force was officially created on 20 May 1929, with the name of Peruvian Aviation Corps. Its main function is to serve as the country's air defense. It also participates in Peace movement, social support campaigns for hard-to-reach populations, organizes air bridges during disasters, and participates in Peacekeeping, international peace missions. Its four major air bases are located in the cities of Piura, , Arequipa and Iquitos. *The Peruvian Navy is in charge of the country's maritime, river, and lake defense. It is made up of 26,000 sailors. Personnel are divided into three levels: superior personnel, junior personnel and seafarers. The military is governed by both the President of Peru, commander in chief, Ministry of Defense (Peru), Ministry of Defense, and Joint Command of the Armed Forces of Peru, Joint Command of the Armed Forces (CCFFAA). The CCFFAA has subordinates to the Operational Commands and Special Commands, with which it carries out the military operations that are required for the defense and the fulfillment of the tasks that the executive power provides. Conscription was abolished in 1999 and replaced by voluntary military service. The National Police of Peru is often classified as a part of the armed forces. Although in fact it has a different organization and a wholly civil mission, its training and activities over more than two decades as an anti-terrorist force have produced markedly military characteristics, giving it the appearance of a virtual fourth military service with significant land, sea and air capabilities and approximately 140,000 personnel. The Peruvian armed forces report through the Ministry of Defense, while the National Police of Peru reports through the Ministry of Interior. Since the end of the Internal conflict in Peru, crisis in Peru in 2000, the federal government has significantly reduced annual spending in defense. In the 2016—2017 budget, defense spending has constituted 1.1% of GDP ($2.3 billion), the second lowest spending relative to GDP in South America following Argentina. More recently, the Armed Forces of Peru have been used in civil defense. In 2020, Peru used its military personnel and even reservists to enforce the strict quarantine measures placed during the COVID-19 pandemic.
GeographyPeru is located on the central western coast of South America facing the Pacific Ocean. It lies wholly in the Southern Hemisphere, its northernmost extreme reaching to 1.8 minutes of latitude or about south of the equator, covers of western South America. It borders Ecuador and Colombia to the north, Brazil to the east, Bolivia to the southeast, Chile to the south, and the Pacific Ocean to the west. The Andes mountains run parallel to the Pacific Ocean; they define the three regions traditionally used to describe the country geographically. The ''costa'' (coast), to the west, is a narrow, largely arid plain except for valleys created by seasonal rivers. The ''sierra'' (highlands) is the region of the Andes; it includes the ''Altiplano'' plateau as well as the highest peak of the country, the Huascarán. The third region is the ''selva'' (jungle), a wide expanse of flat terrain covered by the Amazon rainforest that extends east. Almost 60 percent of the country's area is located within this region. The country has fifty-four hydrographic basins, fifty-two of which are small coastal basins that discharge their waters into the Pacific Ocean. The final two are the Endorheic basin, endorheic basin of , and the Amazon basin, which empties into the Atlantic Ocean. Both are delimited by the Andes mountain range. The Amazon basin is particularly noteworthy as it is the source of the Amazon River, which at 6872 km, is the longest river in the world, and covers 75% of Peruvian territory. Peru contains 4% of the planet's freshwater. Most Peruvian rivers originate in the peaks of the Andes and drain into one of three drainage basin, basins. Those that drain toward the Pacific Ocean are steep and short, flowing only intermittently. Tributaries of the Amazon River have a much larger flow, and are longer and less steep once they exit the ''sierra''. Rivers that drain into Lake Titicaca are generally short and have a large flow. Peru's longest rivers are the Ucayali, the Marañón River (Peru), Marañón, the Içá, Putumayo, the Yavarí River, Yavarí, the Huallaga River, Huallaga, the Urubamba River, Urubamba, the Mantaro River, Mantaro, and the Amazon. The largest List of lakes of Peru, lake in Peru, Lake Titicaca between Peru and Bolivia high in the Andes, is also the largest of South America. The largest Water resources management in Peru, reservoirs, all in the coastal region of Peru, are the Poechos Reservoir, Poechos, Tinajones, San Lorenzo, and El Fraile reservoirs.
ClimateThe combination of tropical latitude, mountain ranges, topography variations, and two ocean currents (Humboldt Current, Humboldt and El Niño Southern Oscillation, El Niño) gives Peru a large diversity of climates. The coastal region has moderate temperatures, low precipitation, and high humidity, except for its warmer, wetter northern reaches. In the mountain region, rain is frequent in summer, and temperature and humidity diminish with altitude up to the frozen peaks of the Andes. The Peruvian Amazon is characterized by heavy rainfall and high temperatures, except for its southernmost part, which has cold winters and seasonal rainfall.
WildlifeBecause of its varied geography and climate, Peru has a high biodiversity with 21,462 species of plants and animals reported as of 2003, 5,855 of them endemism, endemic, and is one of the megadiverse countries. Peru has over 1,800 species of birds (120 Endemism, endemic), over 500 species of mammals, over 300 species of reptiles, and over 1,000 species of freshwater fishes. The hundreds of mammals include rare species like the Puma (genus), puma, jaguar and spectacled bear. The Birds of Peru produce large amounts of , an economically important export. The Pacific holds large quantities of bass (fish), sea bass, flounder, anchovies, tuna, crustaceans, and shellfish, and is home to many sharks, sperm whales, and whales. Peru also has an equally diverse Flora of Peru, flora. The coastal deserts produce little more than cacti, apart from hilly lomas, fog oases and river valleys that contain unique plant life. The Highlands above the tree-line known as Puna grassland, puna is home to bushes, cactus, drought-resistant plants such as Jarava ichu, ichu, and the largest species of bromeliad – the spectacular Puya raimondii. The cloud-forest slopes of the Andes sustain moss, orchids, and bromeliads, and the Amazon rainforest is known for its variety of trees and canopy plants. Peru had a 2019 Forest Landscape Integrity Index mean score of 8.86/10, ranking it 14th globally out of 172 countries.
EconomyThe economy of Peru is the 48th largest in the world (ranked by Purchasing power parity),Peru
Largest cities and towns
Ethnic groupsPeru is a multiethnic society, multiethnic nation formed by successive waves of different peoples over five centuries. inhabited Peruvian territory for several millennia before the Spanish conquest of Peru, Spanish conquest in the 16th century; according to historian Noble David Cook, their population decreased from nearly 5–9 million in the 1520s to around 600,000 in 1620 mainly because of infectious diseases. The 2017 census for the first time included a question on ethnic self-identification. According to the results, 60.2% of the people identified themselves as mestizo, 22.3% identified themselves as Quechua people, Quechua, 5.9% identified themselves as White Peruvians, white, 3.6% identified themselves as Afro-Peruvians, black, 2.4% identified themselves as Aymara people, Aymara, 2.3% identified themselves as other ethnic groups, and 3.3% didn't declare their ethnicity. Spaniards and Africans arrived in large numbers under colonial rule, mixing widely with each other and with Indigenous peoples. After independence, there was gradual immigration from England, France, Germany, and Italy. Peru freed its black slaves in 1854. Chinese and Japanese arrived in the 1850s as laborers following the end of slavery, and have since become a major influence in Peruvian society.
PopulationWith about 31.2 million inhabitants in 2017, Peru is the List of South American countries by population, fourth most populous country in South America. The demographic growth rate of Peru declined from 2.6% to 1.6% between 1950 and 2000; with the population being expected to reach approximately 42 million in 2050. According to the 1940 Peruvian census, Peru had a population at the time of seven million residents. , 79.3% lived in urban areas and 20.7% in rural areas. Major cities include the Lima metropolitan area (home to over 9.8 million people), Arequipa, Trujillo, Chiclayo, Piura, Iquitos, , Chimbote, and Huancayo; all reported more than 250,000 inhabitants in the 2007 Peru Census, 2007 census. There are 15 Uncontacted peoples, uncontacted Amerindian tribes in Peru.
LanguageAccording to the Peruvian Constitution of 1993, Peru's official languages are Spanish and, in areas where they predominate, and other Indigenous languages. Spanish is spoken natively by 82.6% of the population, Quechua by 13.9%, and Aymara by 1.7%, while other languages are spoken by the remaining 1.8%. Spanish language is used by the government and is the mainstream language of the country, which is used by the media and in educational systems and commerce. Amerindians who live in the Andean highlands speak Quechua and Aymara and are ethnically distinct from the diverse Indigenous groups who live on the eastern side of the Andes and in the tropical lowlands adjacent to the Amazon basin. Peru's distinct geographical regions are mirrored in a language divide between the coast where Spanish is more predominant over the Amerindian languages, and the more diverse traditional Andean cultures of the mountains and highlands. The Indigenous populations east of the Andes speak various languages and dialects. Some of these groups still adhere to traditional Indigenous languages, while others have been almost completely assimilated into the Spanish language. There has been an increasing and organized effort to teach Quechua in public schools in the areas where Quechua is spoken. In the Peruvian Amazon, numerous Indigenous languages are spoken, including Asháninka language, Asháninka, Bora language, Bora, and Aguaruna language, Aguaruna.Resonancias.org
ReligionRoman Catholicism has been the predominant faith in Peru for centuries, albeit religious practices have a high degree of with Indigenous traditions. As of the 2017 census, 76% of the population over 12 years old described themselves as Catholic Church, Catholic, 14.1% as Evangelical Protestant, Evangelical, 4.8% as Protestant, Jewish, Latter-day Saints, and Jehovah's Witnesses, and 5.1% as nonreligious. Amerindian religious traditions continue to play a major role in the beliefs of Peruvians. Catholic festivities like Corpus Christi (feast), Corpus Christi, Holy Week and Christmas sometimes blend with Amerindian traditions. Amerindian festivities from pre-Columbian remain widespread; Inti Raymi, an ancient Inca festival, is still celebrated, especially in rural communities. The majority of towns, cities, and villages have their own official church or cathedral and patron saint. According to Article 50 of the Peruvian Constitution, Roman Catholicism is the official religion, and Roman Catholicism is mandatory in all state schools.
EducationPeru's literacy rate is estimated at 92.9% as of 2007; this rate is lower in rural areas (80.3%) than in urban areas (96.3%). Primary and secondary education are compulsory education, compulsory and free in public schools. Peru is home to one of the oldest institutions of higher learning in the New World. The , founded on 12 May 1551, during the , is the first officially established and the oldest continuously functioning university in the Americas.
HealthPeru has a life expectancy of 75.0 years (72.4 for males and 77.7 for females) according to the latest data for the year 2016 from the World Bank.
ToponymsMany of the Peruvian toponyms have Indigenous language, Indigenous sources. In the Andes communities of Áncash Region, Ancash, Cusco Region, Cusco and Puno Region, Puno, Quechua or Aymara names are overwhelmingly predominant. Their Spanish-based orthography, however, is in conflict with the normalized alphabets of these languages. According to Article 20 of ''Decreto Supremo No 004-2016-MC'' (Supreme Decree) which approves the Regulations to Law 29735, published in the official newspaper El Peruano on 22 July 2016, adequate spellings of the toponyms in the normalized alphabets of the Indigenous languages must progressively be proposed with the aim of standardizing the naming used by the National Geographic Institute ''(Instituto Geográfico Nacional, IGN)''. The National Geographic Institute realizes the necessary changes in the official maps of Peru.
CulturePeruvian culture is primarily rooted in Amerindian and European traditions, though it has also been influenced by various Asian and African ethnic groups. Peruvian arts, Peruvian artistic traditions date back to the elaborate pottery, textiles, jewelry, and sculpture of Pre-Inca cultures. The Incas maintained these crafts and made Architecture of Peru, architectural achievements including the construction of Machu Picchu. Baroque dominated colonial art, though modified by Native traditions. During this period, most art focused on religious subjects; the numerous churches of the era and the paintings of the Cusco School are representative. Arts stagnated after independence until the emergence of ''Indigenismo'' in the early 20th century. Since the 1950s, Peruvian art has been Eclecticism in art, eclectic and shaped by both foreign and local art currents.
Visual ArtsPeruvian art has its origin in the Peruvian Ancient Cultures, Andean civilizations. These civilizations arose in the territory of modern Peru before the Spanish colonization of the Americas, arrival of the Spanish. Peruvian art incorporated European elements after the Spanish conquest and continued to evolve throughout the centuries up to the modern day.
Pre-Columbian artPeru's earliest artwork came from the culture, which was concentrated on the Pacific coast, and the Chavín culture, which was largely north of between the Andean mountain ranges of the Cordillera Negra and the Cordillera Blanca. Decorative work from this era, approximately the 9th century BCE, was symbolic and religious in nature. The artists worked with gold, silver, and Ceramics (art), ceramics to create a variety of sculptures and relief carvings. These civilizations were also known for their architecture and wood sculptures. Between the 9th century BCE and the 2nd century CE, the Paracas Cavernas and Paracas Necropolis cultures developed on the south coast of Peru. Paracas Cavernas produced complex polychrome and monochrome ceramics with religious representations. Burials from the Paracas Necropolis also yielded complex textiles, many produced with sophisticated geometric patterns. The 3rd century BCE saw the flowering of the urban culture, Moche (culture), Moche, in the Lambayeque (Department of Peru), Lambayeque region. The Moche culture produced impressive architectural works, such as the Huaca del Sol, Huacas del Sol y de la Luna and the Huaca Rajada of Sipán. They were experts at Terrace (agriculture), cultivation in terraces and hydraulic engineering and produced original ceramics, textiles, pictorial and sculptural works. Another urban culture, the Huari Culture, Wari civilization, flourished between the 8th and 12th centuries in Ayacucho (Department of Peru), Ayacucho. Their centralized town planning was extended to other areas, such as Pachacamac, Cajamarquilla and Wari Willka. Between the 9th and 13th centuries CE, the military urban Tiwanaku empire rose by the borders of . Centered around a city of the same name in modern-day Bolivia, the Tiwanaku introduced stone architecture and sculpture of a monumental type. These works of architecture and art were made possible by the Tiwanaku's developing bronze, which enabled them to make the necessary tools. Urban architecture reached a new height between the 14th and 15th centuries in the Chimú Culture. The Chimú built the city of in the valley of the Moche River, in La Libertad (Department of Peru), La Libertad. The Chimú were skilled goldsmiths and created remarkable works of hydraulic engineering. The Inca Empire, Inca Civilization, which united Peru under its hegemony in the centuries immediately preceding the Spanish conquest, incorporated into their own works a great part of the cultural legacy of the civilizations which preceded it. Important relics of their artwork and architecture can be seen in cities like Cusco (Department of Peru), Cusco, architectural remains like Sacsayhuamán, Sacsahuamán and Machu Picchu and stone pavements that united Cusco with the rest of the Inca Empire.
Colonial artPeruvian sculpture and painting began to define themselves from the Studio, ateliers founded by monks, who were strongly influenced by the Sevillian Baroque School. In this context, the stalls of the Lima Cathedral, Cathedral choir, the fountain of the Main Square of Lima both by Pedro de Noguera, and a great part of the colonial production were registered. The first center of art established by the Spanish was the Cuzco School that taught Quechua languages, Quechua artists European painting styles. Diego Quispe Tito (1611–1681) was one of the first members of the Cuzco school and Marcos Zapata (1710–1773) was one of the last. Painting of this time reflected a synthesis of European and Indigenous influences, as is evident in the portrait of prisoner Atahualpa, by D. de Mora or in the canvases of the Italians Mateo Pérez de Alesio and Angelino Medoro, the Spaniards Francisco Bejarano and J. de Illescas and the Creole J. Rodriguez. During the 17th and 18th centuries, the Baroque Style also dominated the field of plastic arts.
LiteratureThe term Peruvian literature not only refers to literature produced in the independent Republic of Peru, but also to literature produced in the during the country's colonial period, and to Oral tradition, oral artistic forms created by diverse ethnic groups that existed in the area during the Prehispanic#South America, pre-Columbian period, such as the Quechua people, Quechua, the Aymara people, Aymara and the people. Peruvian literature is rooted in the oral traditions of pre-Columbian civilizations. Spaniards introduced writing in the 16th century; colonial literary expression included chronicles and Christian literature, religious literature. After independence, Costumbrism and Romanticism became the most common literary genres, as exemplified in the works of Ricardo Palma. The early 20th century's ''Indigenismo'' movement was led by such writers as Ciro Alegría and José María Arguedas. César Vallejo wrote modernist and often politically engaged verse. Modern Peruvian literature is recognized thanks to authors such as List of Nobel laureates in Literature, Nobel laureate Mario Vargas Llosa, a leading member of the Latin American Boom.
CuisineDue to the Spanish expedition and discovery of the Americas, the explorers started the Columbian exchange which included food unheard of in the Old World, including potato, tomato, and maize. Modern Indigenous Peruvian food often includes corn, potatoes, and Chili pepper, chilies. There are now more than 3,000 kinds of potatoes grown on Peruvian terrain, according to Peru's Instituto Peruano de la Papa. Modern Peruvian cuisine blends Native American cuisine#Native American cuisine of South America, Amerindian and Spanish food with strong influences from Chinese, African, Arab, Italian, and Japanese cooking. Common dishes include ''anticuchos'', ''ceviche'', and ''pachamanca''. Peru's varied climate allows the growth of diverse plants and animals good for cooking. Peruvian cuisine reflects local practices and ingredients—including influences from the Indigenous population including the Quechua people, Inca and cuisines brought in with colonizers and immigrants. Without the familiar ingredients from their home countries, immigrants modified their traditional cuisines by using ingredients available in Peru. The four traditional staples of Peruvian cuisine are Maize, corn, potatoes and other tubers, Amaranthaceaes (quinoa, kañiwa and kiwicha) and legumes (beans and lupins). Staples brought by the Spanish include rice, wheat, and meats (beef, pork, and chicken). Many traditional foods—such as quinoa, kiwicha, chili peppers, and several roots and tubers have increased in popularity in recent decades, reflecting a revival of interest in Native Peruvian foods and culinary techniques. It is also common to see traditional cuisines being served with a modern flair in towns like , where tourists come to visit. Chef Gaston Acurio has become well known for raising awareness of local ingredients.
MusicPeruvian music has Andean music, Andean, Music of Spain, Spanish, and African Music, African roots. In pre-Columbian times, musical expressions varied widely in each region; the ''quena'' and the ''tinya'' were two common instruments. Spaniards introduced new instruments, such as the guitar and the harp, which led to the development of crossbred instruments like the ''charango''. African contributions to Peruvian music include its rhythms and the ''Cajon, cajón'', a percussion instrument. Peruvian folk dances include marinera, tondero, zamacueca, diablada and huayno.Romero, Raúl (1985). "La música tradicional y popular". In: Patronato Popular y Porvenir, ''La música en el Perú''. Lima: Industrial Gráfica, pp. pp. 243–245, 261–265. Peruvian music is dominated by the national Musical instrument, instrument, the charango. The charango is a member of the lute family of instruments and was invented during Viceroyalty of Peru, colonial times by musicians imitating the Spanish vihuela. In the Canas and Titicaca regions, the charango is used in courtship rituals, symbolically invoking mermaids with the instrument to lure the woman to the male performers. Until the 1960s, the charango was denigrated as an instrument of the rural poor. After the revolution in 1959, which built upon the Indigenismo movement (1910–1940), the charango was popularized among other performers. Variants include the walaycho, chillador, chinlili, and the larger and lower-tuned charangon. While the Spanish guitar is widely played, so too is the Spanish-in-origin bandurria. Unlike the guitar, it has been transformed by Peruvian players over the years, changing from a 12-string, 6-course instrument to one having 12 to 16 strings in a mere four courses. Violins and harps, also of European origin, are also played.
CinemaWhile the Peruvian film industry has not been nearly as prolific as that of some other Latin American countries, some Peruvian movies produced enjoyed regional success. Historically, the cinema of Peru Cinema of Iquitos, began in Iquitos in 1932 by Antonio Wong Rengifo (with a momentous, initial Movie theater, film billboard from 1900) because of the rubber boom and the intense arrival of foreigners with technology to the city, and thus continued an extensive, unique filmography, with a different style than the films made in the capital, Lima. Peru also produced the first animated 3-D film in Latin America, ''Piratas en el Callao''. This film is set in the historical port city of , which during colonial times had to defend itself against attacks by Dutch and British privateers seeking to undercut Spain's trade with its colonies. The film was produced by the Peruvians, Peruvian company Alpamayo Entertainment, which made a second 3-D film one year later: ''Dragones: Destino de Fuego''. In February 2006, the film ''Madeinusa'', produced as a joint venture between Peru and Spain and directed by Claudia Llosa, was set in an imaginary Andean village and describes the stagnating life of Madeinusa performed by Magaly Solier and the traumas of post-civil war Peru. Llosa, who shared elements of Gabriel García Márquez's magic realism, won an award at the Rotterdam Film Festival. Llosa's second feature, The Milk of Sorrow ("La Teta Asustada"), was nominated for the 82nd Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Picture, the first Peruvian film in the academy's history to be nominated. The Milk of Sorrow ("La Teta Asustada"), won the Golden Bear award at the 2009 Berlinale.
See also*Outline of Peru
Notes and references
Bibliography* Bailey, Gauvin Alexander. ''Art of colonial Latin America''. London: Phaidon, 2005, .
Further reading;Economy * Banco Central de Reserva