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(lē`mə, Span. lē`mä), city (1990 metropolitan area est. pop. 6,400,000), W Peru, capital and largest city of Peru. Its port is CallaoCallao
, city (1993 pop. 376,165), capital of the constitutional prov. of Callao, W Peru, on Callao Bay of the Pacific Ocean. It is Peru's major seaport. The harbor is sheltered by an island and a small peninsula.
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. The Lima urban area is Peru's economic center and the site of oil-refining and diversified manufacturing industries. The city was founded on Jan. 18, 1535, by Francisco Pizarro and is the second oldest capital city in South America. As the center of the viceroyalty of Peru, it was the capital of Spain's New World empire in the 17th and 18th cent. Its cultural supremacy on the continent was contested in colonial times only by Bogotá, Colombia, and in magnificence and political prestige Lima's only rival was Mexico City. It was named the City of Kings by Pizarro. A sharp rise in its population in the 20th cent. resulted in overcrowding and a wide gap between rich and poor.

Rebuilt several times, Lima reflects the architectural styles prevalent in various periods; much of the city is characterized by modern steel and concrete buildings. Although many streets are narrow and preserve a colonial atmosphere, spacious boulevards traverse the entire metropolitan area. Small squares, statues of national heroes, parks, and gardens are common. The focal point of the city's life is the central square, the Plaza de las Armas. It is dominated by the huge national palace and cathedral. The cathedral, begun by Pizarro and containing what are claimed to be his remains, was almost totally destroyed by earthquakes in 1687 and 1746, along with much of the city.

Besides the palace, the cathedral, and numerous churches, including the monastery of Santa Rosa with the relics of St. Rose of Lima, notable public buildings include the National Library, founded in 1821 by José de San Martín, and the National Univ. of San Marcos, founded in 1551. The library, which once contained priceless documents of the Spanish Conquest and rare European books, was looted by Chilean soldiers during Chile's occupation of Lima (1881–83) in the War of the Pacific. The Pontifical Catholic Univ. of Peru, Univ. of Lima, and many other educational institutions are also there.

Lima has a uniformly cool climate and during the winter is subject to the fogs and heavy mists peculiar to Peru's southern desert coast. It almost never rains. Not far from the city are the pre-Inca ruins at PachacamacPachacamac
, ruins of a walled Native American settlement, Peru, about 25 mi (40 km) SE of Lima in the Lurin Valley. This site, which contains a number of pyramids, was considered one of the most important religious monuments by the indigenous people of the central Andes.
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(lī`mə), city (1990 pop. 45,549), seat of Allen co., NW Ohio; settled 1831, inc. 1842. Located in a fertile farm area, it is a processing and marketing center for grain, dairy, and meat products. Auto engines, school buses, electric signs and motors, cranes and power shovels, petroleum products, steel castings, machine tools, plastics, chemicals, and fertilizers are produced in the city. Lima, formerly a large oil producer (1885–1910), houses a symphony orchestra and a branch of Ohio State Univ.
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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



the capital of Peru; the country’s most important economic, political, and cultural center. Lima is situated on a plain near the foothills of the Andes, on the Pacific Ocean. It has a tropical desert climate. The average temperature during the coldest month (August) is 16°C, and during the warmest month (February), 23°C. The average precipitation is 40 mm per year. Population of Greater Lima, 3.5 million (1972, estimate).

Historical information. Lima was founded in 1535 on the left bank of the Rímac River by the Spanish conquistador F. Pizarro. It was originally called Ciudad de los Reyes (City of the Kings). The city’s modern name is a corrupted form of the name of the river. For three centuries, Lima was the center of the Spanish colonial possessions in South America and the capital of the viceroyalty of Peru. After the declaration of Peru’s independence from Spain in 1821, Lima became the capital of the republic of Peru. During the War of the Pacific of 1879–83, the city was occupied by Chilean troops from January 1881 to October 1883. By the turn of the 20th century, Lima had become an industrial city and the center of the strike movement and of demonstrations by workers.

Economic information. Greater Lima, which includes Lima proper, its suburbs, and the seaport of Callao, produces approximately 80 percent of Peru’s manufactures. There are metalworking, chemical, textile, shoe, and fish-processing enterprises. Automobiles are assembled and electrical appliances are produced there. A major railroad and highway junction, Lima has an international airport.

Architecture. Lima has preserved the rectangular grid of streets that was laid out during the colonial period; the streets were partially rebuilt in the middle of the 20th century. South of the Rímac River is the Old City, which has a number of architectural monuments. Northwest of the Old City lies the industrial region, and southwest, the business districts (which arose in the 19th century). Areas with expensive private homes are located south and southeast of the Old City. During the 16th, 17th, and 18th centuries several buildings were constructed in the baroque style: palaces (Torre Tagle, 1735), residential buildings with patios and wooden balconies, a cathedral (1572–1797), monastery complexes with buildings and courtyards (San Francisco, Santo Domingo, and La Merced), and churches. These structures were built primarily of adobe, and their portals and interiors are decorated with skillfully executed, intricate sculptural work. Nineteenth-century buildings are characterized by an eclectic style (for example, the Square of May 2, 1895).

In the first half of the 20th century the magnificent “neocolonial style” (the Presidential Palace, 1937–38) and the more simple “neo-Peruvian style” (the Union of Architects building, 1947) predominated. Since 1950 modern-style buildings have been constructed (the Matute residential district, 1952; the Ministry of Education, 1956).

Educational, scientific, and cultural institutions. Located in Lima are the University of San Marcos, the Catholic University of Peru, the University of the Pacific, the National University of Engineering, the Cayetano Heredia Peruvian University, the Federico Villarreal National University, the National Academy of Music, and the National School of Fine Arts. The city’s scientific institutions include the Peruvian Academy, the Academy of the Exact, Physical, and Natural Sciences, the National Academy of Medicine, and the Peruvian Academy of Surgery.

Lima is the site of the National Library and ten museums (including the National Historical Museum, the National Museum of Anthropology and Archaeology, the Javier Prado Museum of Natural History, the National Museum of Peruvian Culture, and the Museum of Art). In the Municipal Theater, Theater of M. A. Segura, Corral de Comedias, La Cabaña, F. Pardo i Aliaga, Club de Teatro L., Arequipa, and Casa de Cultura de Lince, several companies appear (the Young Blood, the Experimental Troupe, Procontra, Ayar, Istrion, and El Molino). There are a symphony orchestra, folklore ensembles with their own schools, and a Peruvian choral association.


Monografías históricas sobre la ciudad de Lima, vols. 1–2. Lima, 1935.
Miró Quesada y Sosa, A. Lima. Buenos Aires, 1946.



a city in the eastern USA, in the state of Ohio. Population, 54,000 (1970; with suburbs, 171,000). The city’s industries, which employ 35,000 people, produce road-construction machinery, motor vehicles, automobile parts, diesel engines, electrical appliances, refined petroleum, and foodstuffs.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


the capital of Peru, near the Pacific coast on the R?mac River: the centre of Spanish colonization in South America; university founded in 1551 (the oldest in South America); an industrial centre with a port at nearby Callao. Pop.: 8 180 000 (2005 est.)
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005