1 an inland republic in South America: colonized by the Spanish from 1537, gaining independence in 1811; lost 142500 sq. km (55000 sq. miles) of territory and over half its population after its defeat in the war against Argentina, Brazil, and Uruguay (1865--70). It is divided by the Paraguay River into a sparsely inhabited semiarid region (Chaco) in the west, and a central region of wooded hills, tropical forests, and rich grasslands, rising to the Paraná plateau in the east. Official languages: Spanish and Guarani. Religion: Roman Catholic majority. Currency: guarani. Capital: Asunción. Pop.: 5223000 (1998 est.). Area: 406750 sq. km (157047 sq. miles)
2 a river in South America flowing south through Brazil and Paraguay to the Paraná River. Length: about 2400 km (1500 miles)
Paraguayan adj, n
n another name for →
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