Comarca

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A comarca (Spanish:  [koˈmaɾka] , Portuguese:  [kuˈmaɾkɐ] or [koˈmaʁkɐ] , Galician:  [koˈmaɾkɐ] , pl. comarcas; Catalan:  [kuˈmaɾkə] , pl. comarques) is a traditional region or local administrative division found in Portugal, Spain and some of their former colonies: Panama, Nicaragua, and Brazil. The term is derived from the term marca, meaning a "march, mark", plus the prefix co-, meaning "together, jointly".

In linguistics, grammatical number is a grammatical category of nouns, pronouns, and adjective and verb agreement that expresses count distinctions. English and other languages present number categories of singular or plural, both of which are cited by using the hash sign (#) or by the numero signs "No." and "Nos." respectively. Some languages also have a dual, trial, and paucal number or other arrangements.

Administrative division A territorial entity for administration purposes

An administrative division, unit, entity, area or region, also referred to as a subnational entity, constituent unit, or country subdivision, is a portion of a country or other region delineated for the purpose of administration. Administrative divisions are granted a certain degree of autonomy and are usually required to manage themselves through their own local governments. Countries are divided up into these smaller units to make managing their land and the affairs of their people easier. A country may be divided into provinces, which, in turn, may be divided in whole or in part into municipalities.

Portugal Republic in Southwestern Europe

Portugal, officially the Portuguese Republic, is a country located mostly on the Iberian Peninsula in southwestern Europe. It is the westernmost sovereign state of mainland Europe, being bordered to the west and south by the Atlantic Ocean and to the north and east by Spain. Its territory also includes the Atlantic archipelagos of the Azores and Madeira, both autonomous regions with their own regional governments.

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The comarca is known in Aragonese as redolada (IPA:  [reðoˈlaða] ) and in Basque as eskualde (IPA:  [es̺kualde] ). In addition, in Galician, comarcas are also called bisbarras (IPA:  [bizˈβarɐs] ).

Aragonese language Romance language

Aragonese is a Romance language spoken in several dialects by 10,000 to 30,000 people in the Pyrenees valleys of Aragon, Spain, primarily in the comarcas of Somontano de Barbastro, Jacetania, Alto Gállego, Sobrarbe, and Ribagorza/Ribagorça. It is the only modern language which survived from medieval Navarro-Aragonese in a form distinctly different from Spanish.

Basque language Language of the Basque people

Basque (; euskara[eus̺ˈkaɾa]) is a language spoken in the Basque Country, a region that straddles the westernmost Pyrenees in adjacent parts of northern Spain and southwestern France. Linguistically, Basque is unrelated to the other languages of Europe and is a language isolate to any other known living language. The Basques are indigenous to, and primarily inhabit, the Basque Country. The Basque language is spoken by 28.4% (751,500) of Basques in all territories. Of these, 93.2% (700,300) are in the Spanish area of the Basque Country and the remaining 6.8% (51,200) are in the French portion.

Although the English word county and its near synonym shire have similar meanings, they are usually translated into Spanish as condado, a term[ clarification needed ] which in Iberia only refers to regions historically ruled by a count. However, "comarca," is occasionally used: examples include the Spanish Wikipedia entry for "comarca" and some translations of The Lord of the Rings (see below).

County Geographical and administrative region in some countries

A county is a geographical region of a country used for administrative or other purposes, in certain modern nations. The term is derived from the Old French conté or cunté denoting a jurisdiction under the sovereignty of a count (earl) or a viscount. The modern French is comté, and its equivalents in other languages are contea, contado, comtat, condado, Grafschaft, graafschap, Gau, etc..

A shire is a traditional term for a division of land, found in Great Britain, Australia, New Zealand and some other English-speaking countries. It was first used in Wessex from the beginning of Anglo-Saxon settlement, and spread to most of the rest of England in the tenth century. In some rural parts of Australia, a shire is a local government area; however, in Australia it is not synonymous with a "county", which is a lands administrative division.

Angola

According to the new judicial division of 2015, Angola (a Portuguese-speaking country) will be subdivided into 60 comarcas, each with a court of first instance. The courts of comarca will replace the previous provincial and municipal courts.

Comarca is also the name of a suburb of Luanda, the capital of Angola.

Luanda City in Angola

Luanda, formerly named São Paulo da Assunção de Loanda, is the capital and largest city in Angola, It is Angola's primary port, and its major industrial, cultural and urban centre. Located on Angola's northern coast with the Atlantic Ocean, Luanda is both Angola's chief seaport and its administrative centre. It is also the capital city of Luanda Province. Luanda and its metropolitan area is the most populous Portuguese-speaking capital city in the world, with over 8 million inhabitants in 2019, a third of Angola's population; it is the third most populous Portuguese-speaking city, after the Brazilian cities of Sāo Paolo and Rio de Janeiro.

Angola country in Africa

Angola, officially the Republic of Angola, is a west-coast country of south-central Africa. It is the seventh-largest country in Africa, bordered by Namibia to the south, the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the north, Zambia to the east, and the Atlantic Ocean to the west. Angola has an exclave province, the province of Cabinda that borders the Republic of the Congo and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The capital and largest city of Angola is Luanda.

Brazil and Portugal

Historical

Until the 16th century, large administrative regions were divided into comarcas. There were six traditional comarcas: Entre-Douro-e-Minho, Trás-os-Montes, Beira, Estremadura, Alentejo and Algarve, of which the last had the honorary title of "kingdom". In the 16th century, the comarcas were gradually referred to as "provinces".

Trás-os-Montes Province the 15th century historical comarca, later province/prefecture, of Portugal

Trás-os-Montes Province is one of the medieval provinces of Portugal.

Estremadura Province (historical) historical province of Portugal

Estremadura Province is one of the six historical provinces of Portugal. It is located along the Atlantic Ocean coast in the center of the country and includes Lisbon, the capital. The name of this province originates from the Spanish and Portuguese struggle with the Moors, and the Christian reclaiming of their land in the 12th century. These provinces were called Extrema Durii, which means "farthest from the Douro River."

Alentejo

The Alentejo is a geographical, historical and cultural region of south central and southern Portugal. In Portuguese, its name means "beyond the Tagus river" (Tejo).

The name "comarca" was applied to the administrative and judicial subdivisions of the provinces from the 17th century. Each comarca corresponded to the territorial area of jurisdiction of a corregedor , a high-ranking administrative and judicial officer who represented the Crown in the district.

The Corregedor was a position established by the Portuguese crown in the 14th-15th century, with the authority to "correct" acts of a local, administrative or judicial nature within the kingdom. Although common throughout the kingdom, the role was more common and important in the administration of the Azores.

In the 19th century, the comarcas were replaced by separate administrative and judicial divisions, reflecting the implementation of the separation of executive and judicial powers. The new administrative divisions became the administrative districts and the new judicial divisions kept the name comarca.

Present

Nowadays, in Brazil, Portugal, and some other countries of the Community of Portuguese Language Countries, the comarca is the basic territorial division in the judicial system. It corresponds to the territorial area of jurisdiction of a court of first instance.

The comarca may correspond to a municipality or group several small municipalities together. Presently, in Brazil, there are 2,680 comarcas. A judiciary organization reform implemented in Portugal in 2014 reduced the number of comarcas from 231 to 23.

Spain

The term comarca is used in several regions in Spain.

In other places, such as Extremadura, the comarca may simply refer to a loosely defined region.

Because of the comarca's long-standing use, it is sometimes used as the basis for the promotion of tourism, with emphasis on local cultural tradition and history.

Mexico

The ninth-largest metropolitan area in Mexico is known as the Comarca Lagunera. The region is made up of 15 municipalities, including the cities of Torreón, Coahuila and Gómez Palacio, Durango.

Panama

In Panama, the comarca indígena is an administrative region for an area with a substantial Amerindian population. Three comarcas (Comarca Emberá-Wounaan, Guna Yala, Ngöbe-Buglé) exist as equivalent to provinces. Two smaller comarcas (Kuna de Madugandí and Kuna de Wargandí) are subordinate to a province and considered equivalent to a corregimiento (municipality).

Fiction

Some Spanish-language editions of British writer J. R. R. Tolkien's works use the term La Comarca as a translation for the English "The Shire".

See also

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