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Latino refers to people living in the US of Latin American nationality and their US-born descendants. Latin America refers countries in South America and North America (including Central America and the islands of the Caribbean) whose inhabitants mostly speak Romance languages, although Native American languages are also spoken there. Most frequently the term Latino is restricted to immigrants from either Spanish or Portuguese speaking countries and their descendants, but the French-speaking areas of Haiti, French Guiana, and the French West Indies may also be included as Latinos.

A person of Hispanic, especially Latin-American, descent, living in the United States. The feminine form of the word is Latina. "Latino" is a shortened form of the Spanish word for a Latin American individual, "latinoamericano."

Latin also refers to the peoples whose native language descends from Latin (language of Ancient Rome) known as Romance languages such as French, Italian, Portuguese, Romanian, Spanish and Catalonian.

In the United States, "Latino" refers to Central and South Americans immigrants and their descendants.

(In Italy, the term is sometimes used to denote a person from the Mezzogiorno, the region of the country located generally south of Rome, since in the Middle Ages this region had considerably less Celtic and Germanic influences than northern Italy; one example of this usage was those made by Dante in the Divine Comedy (Inferno, Canto XXII, line 65, and Canto XXIX, lines 90 and 92).)

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Last updated: 02-07-2005 21:15:34
Last updated: 02-26-2005 04:53:46