Argentina: Tango, soccer, gauchos, and more!

Considered the eighth-largest country in the world, the second-largest in Latin America, and the largest Spanish-speaking country, Argentina is known for its culture, passion, and individuality. Argentina is widely known for the Tango, a partner dance with European and African influences, which originated in the 1890s along the River Plate, and soon spread to the rest of the world. Argentinians are a very passionate people and you can observe this trait during soccer matches. It is said that Argentina is home to the most heated and fierce rivalry in the soccer world, between the top two local soccer clubs: Boca Juniors and River Plate. Another iconic representation of Argentinians is their nomadic gaucho, who can be compared to the North American cowboy.  Gauchos are in charge of herding cattle year-round and are considered skilled lasso handlers and excellent horsemen. Gauchos played a major role in Argentina’s independence from Spain, and they are a respected symbol in the country.

Argentina’s rich cuisine includes everything from grilled meats, pastas, and empanadas, to their famous dulce de leche and mate.

Did you know…? In Latin, Argentina means “silver.” Settlers believed that the country was filled with silver, but unfortunately it wasn’t. The first animated feature film was made by Argentinian Quirino Cristiani in 1917. Argentina was the first country to adopt fingerprinting as a method of identification in 1925.

This is the third in a series of articles spotlighting different countries in honor of Hispanic Heritage Month. To see a complete list of previous entries, click here.

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