History. Latin America came to fruition in the 1500’s after European “discovery” of the New World. Countries such as Spain, France and Portugal colonized the region. Although most of Latin America was colonized by Spain, the countries of Portugal and France also had major influences on the region.
Who conquered all of South America?
For the conquest era, two names of Spaniards are generally known because they led the conquests of high indigenous civilizations, Hernán Cortés, leader of the expedition that conquered the Aztecs of Central Mexico, and Francisco Pizarro, leader of the conquest of the Inca in Peru.
Who first came to South America?
Explorer Christopher Columbus sets foot on the American mainland for the first time, at the Paria Peninsula in present-day Venezuela. Thinking it an island, he christened it Isla Santa and claimed it for Spain. Columbus was born in Genoa, Italy, in 1451.
What did the natives call South America?
The English term “Amerindian” (short for “Indians of the Americas”) is often used in the Guianas. Latin Americans of mixed European and Indigenous descent are usually referred to as mestizos (Spanish) and mestiços (Portuguese).
Indigenous peoples of South America.