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Pánuco(pä`no͞okō), river, c.315 mi (510 km) long, rising as the Santa María River in San Luis Potosí state, N central Mexico, and flowing generally east to empty into the Gulf of Mexico near Tampico. It is navigable for c.200 mi (322 km). Tributaries, including the Moctezuma, drain, sometimes by artificial means, the AnáhuacAnáhuac
[Aztec and Nahuatl,=near the water], geographical term used variously in Mexico before the Spanish Conquest. Today it commonly refers to that part of the central plateau of Mexico comprising the Pánuco and Lerma river systems and the lake basin of the
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