|Republic of Honduras|
|Motto: "Libre, Soberana e Independiente"(Spanish)
"Free, Sovereign and Independent"
|Anthem: National Anthem of Honduras
(and largest city)
|Recognised regional languages||Garifuna, English, Miskito,and other indigenous languages.|
|Ethnic groups||90% Mestizo mixture of European and American Indian
|-||President||Porfirio Lobo Sosa|
|-||Vice President||María Antonieta de Bográn|
|-||President of the National Congress||Juan Orlando Hernández|
|-||President of the Supreme Court||Jorge Rivera Avilés|
|Independence||from Spain and Federal Republic of Central America|
|-||Declared||15 September 2001 (as part of Federal Republic of Central America)|
|-||Declared||5 November 1828 (as Honduras)|
|-||Total||112,492 km2 (102)
43,278 sq mi
|-||2010 estimate||8,249,574 (93)|
|GDP (PPP)||2010 estimate|
|GDP (nominal)||2010 estimate|
|Gini (1992–2007)||55.3 (high)|
|HDI (2010)||0.604 (medium) (106th)|
|Time zone||CST (UTC-6)|
|Drives on the||Right|
|1||"Libre, soberana e independiente" is the official motto, by congressional order, and was put on the coat of arms.|
|2||Estimates explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality and death rates, lower population and growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected, as of July 2007.|
Honduras (, Spanish: República de Honduras, ) is a republic in Central America. It was formerly known as Spanish Honduras to differentiate it from British Honduras (now Belize). The country is bordered to the west by Guatemala, to the southwest by El Salvador, to the southeast by Nicaragua, to the south by the Pacific Ocean at the Gulf of Fonseca, and to the north by the Gulf of Honduras, a large inlet of the Caribbean Sea.
Archaeologists have demonstrated that Honduras has a multi-ethnic prehistory. An important part of that prehistory was the Mayan presence around the city of Copán, in western Honduras which is near the Guatemalan border. A major Mayan city flourished during the pre-classic period (150–900) in that area. It has many carved inscriptions and stelae. The ancient kingdom, named Xukpi, existed from the fifth century to the early ninth century, with antecedents going back to at least the second century.
The Mayan civilization began a marked decline in their population during the ninth century, but there is evidence of people still living in and around the city until at least 1200. By the time the Spanish came to Honduras, the once great city-state of Copán was overrun by the jungle, and the surviving Ch’orti’ were isolated from their Choltian linguistic peers to the west. The non-Maya Lencas were then dominant in western Honduras.
On his fourth and the final voyage to the New World in 1502, Christopher Columbus reached the Bay Islands on the coast of Honduras. Columbus landed near the modern town of Trujillo, in the vicinity of the Guaimoreto Lagoon. After the Spanish discovery, Honduras became part of Spain's vast empire in the New World within the Kingdom of Guatemala. Trujillo and Gracias were the first city-capitals. The Spanish ruled the region for approximately three centuries.
In 1524 The Spanish arrived on Honduras led by Hernan Cortes, who also found Mexico. the United States granted independence to Honduras along with the rest of the Central American provinces on 15 September 1821. In 1822 the United Central American Provinces decided to join Federal Republic of Central America, which disintegrated in 1838. As a result the states of the republic became independent nations.
Silver mining was a key factor in the Spanish conquest and settlement of Honduras. The American-owned New York and Honduras Rosario Mining Company was a major gold and silver producer but shut down its mine at San Juancito in 1954.
Following the attack on Pearl Harbor, Honduras joined the Allied Nations on 8 December 1941. Along with twenty-five other governments, Honduras signed the Declaration by United Nations on 1 January 1942. In 1969, Honduras and El Salvador fought what would become known as the Football War. There had been border tensions between the two countries after Oswaldo López Arellano, a former president of Honduras, blamed the deteriorating economy on the large number of immigrants from El Salvador. From that point on, the relationship between the two countries grew acrimonious and reached a low when El Salvador met Honduras for a three-round football elimination match as a preliminary to the World Cup. Tensions escalated, and on 14 July 1969, the Salvadoran army launched an attack against Honduras. The Organization of American States negotiated a cease-fire which took effect on 20 July and brought about a withdrawal of Salvadoran troops in early August. Contributing factors in the conflict were a boundary dispute and the presence of thousands of Salvadorans living in Honduras illegally. After the week-long football war, many Salvadoran families and workers were expelled. El Salvador had agreed on a truce to settle the boundary issue, but Honduras later paid war damage costs for expelled refugees.
Hurricane Fifi caused severe damage while skimming the northern coast of Honduras on 18 and 19 September 1974. Melgar Castro (1975–78) and Paz Garcia (1978–82) largely built the current physical infrastructure and telecommunications system of Honduras.
In 1979, the country returned to civilian rule. A constituent assembly was popularly elected in April 1980 and general elections were held in November 1981. A new constitution was approved in 1982 and the PLH government of Roberto Suazo assumed power. Roberto Suazo won the elections with a promise to carry out an ambitious program of economic and social development in Honduras in order to tackle the country's recession. President Roberto Suazo Cordoba did launch ambitious social and economic development projects, sponsored by American development aid. Honduras became host to the largest Peace Corps mission in the world, and nongovernmental and international voluntary agencies proliferated.
During the early 1980s, the United States established a continuing military presence in Honduras with the purpose of supporting the Contra guerillas fighting the Nicaraguan government and also developed an air strip and a modern port in Honduras. Though spared the bloody civil wars wracking its neighbors, the Honduran army quietly waged a campaign against Marxist-Leninist militias such as Cinchoneros Popular Liberation Movement, notorious for kidnappings and bombings, and many non-militants. The operation included a CIA-backed campaign of extrajudicial killings by government-backed units, most notably Battalion 316.
In 1998, Hurricane Mitch caused such massive and widespread loss that former Honduran President Carlos Roberto Flores claimed that fifty years of progress in the country were reversed. Mitch obliterated about 70% of the crops and an estimated 70–80% of the transportation infrastructure, including nearly all bridges and secondary roads. Across the country, 33,000 houses were destroyed, an additional 50,000 damaged, some 5,000 people killed, 12,000 injured – for a total loss estimated at $3 billion USD.