Canarian people

Canarian people

Infobox Ethnic group
group = Canarian people

caption = José Viera y Clavijo·José de Anchieta·Tomás de Iriarte y Oropesa
Benito Pérez Galdós·Sergio Rodríguez·Agustín de Betancourt

poptime =Canary Islands 1,995,833 Spanish
up to 4.5% of total Spanish population
region1 = flagcountry|Spain
pop1 = 1,995,833 (4.5%)
region2 = flagicon|Cuba Cuba
pop2 = (?? of White pop.)
region3 = flagcountry|Puerto Rico
pop3 = (?? of White pop.)
region4 = flagicon|Venezuela Venezuela
pop4 = (?? of White pop.)
region5 = flagcountry|United States
pop5 = (?? of White Hispanics)
langs = Spanish language
rels = Predominantly
Roman Catholic
related = Spanish (Andalusians)·Portuguese·Italians·French

The Canarians are an ethnic group or nation living in the archipelago of the Canary Islands (an autonomous community of Spain), near the coast of Western Africa. The variety of the Spanish language spoken in the region is the "Habla Canaria" ("Canary speech") or the "Dialecto Canario" (Canarian dialect), a distinctive dialect of Spanish spoken in the islands.


The islands were conquered by mostly Andalusians and some Castilians at the beginnings of the 15th century. In 1402, they began to subdue the native Guanche population and the Guanches were initially enslaved and gradually absorbed by the Spanish colonizers.

After subsequent settlement by Spaniards and other European peoples, mainly Portuguese, the remaining Guanches were gradually diluted by the settlers and their culture largely vanished. Alonso Fernández de Lugo, conqueror of Tenerife and La Palma, oversaw extensive immigration to these islands during a short period from the late 1490s to the 1520s from mainland Europe, and immigrants included Galicians, Castilians, Portuguese, Italians, Catalans, Basques, and Flemings. At subsequent judicial enquiries, Fernández de Lugo was accused of favoring Genoese and Portuguese immigrants over Castilians. [ [ History of La Palma ] ]

Today some of the traditional sports such as Lucha Canaria, Juego del Palo or Salto del Pastor, among others, have their roots in Guanche culture. Additionally, other traditions include Canarian pottery, words of Guanche origin in the "habla canaria" and the rural consumption of guarapo gomero and gofio.

Modern day Canarian culture is a hybrid between Latin America and Continental Spain with some Guanche roots. The strong influence of Latin America is due to the constant emigration and return over the centuries of Canarians to that continent, chiefly to Cuba, Venezuela, and Puerto Rico.


The inhabitants of the Canary Islands hold a gene pool that is halfway between the Iberians and the ancient native population, the Guanches (a proto-Berber population). Guanche genetic markers have also been found, at low frequencies, in peninsular Spain, probably as a result of slavery and/or later emigration from the Canary Islands. [ [ A tale of aborigines, conquerors and slaves: Alu insertion polymorphisms and the peopling of Canary Islands] , from the National Center for Biotechnology Information of the United States.]

Canarians abroad: the Isleño community

Historically, the Canary Islands have served as a hub between Spain and the Americas, and therefore large groups of Canary islanders have emigrated and settled all over the New World as early as the 15th century, mainly in, Cuba, Puerto Rico, Venezuela and Uruguay.

Los Isleños

The Canarians were known as Isleños ("islanders") to peninsular Spanish, and they also went by that name during emigration to the Americas. In the United States, they settled in two places: Louisiana and Texas, both then parts of the Spanish Empire, with Louisiana being the premier settlement. When referring to the Isleños in the United States, it usually applies to the Canarian descendants of Louisiana. There were four places in southeast Louisiana settled by Isleños, with the main settlement being St. Bernard Parish.

The Isleños still speak the Canarian dialect of Spanish. Their Spanish has some borrowed words from neighboring cultures. The Isleños are proud of their heritage and have annual festivals in Louisiana to celebrate their culture. There is a museum as well as an exclusive Isleño cemetery and a church in St. Bernard Parish. The Isleños have dominated the fishing and farming industries, especially sugarcane.

In Texas, in earlier times, there was a small community of Isleños that founded San Antonio in 1731, one hundred years before the first English-speaking immigrants arrived in the region. [Links to some "Isleño" online communities and history webpages: [ 1] , [ 2] , [ 3] .]

As far as Latin America is concerned, Canarian emigration to Cuba and Puerto Rico has been there for centuries as well. Canarian people greatly influenced the Cuban culture, even those typical Cuban industries such as tobacco and sugar have the signature of Canarian peopleFact|date=January 2008. In Puerto Rico, whole villages were founded by Canarian settlers.

Montevideo, the current Uruguayan capital, was also founded by Canarian immigrantsDubious|date=March 2008 as many other places in the continentVague|date=March 2008.

Canary Islands

Canary Islands (Spanish Islas Canarias IPA|/ˈis.las kaˈnarjas/) (28° 06'N, 15° 24'W) are an archipelago of the Kingdom of Spain consisting of seven islands of volcanic origin in the Atlantic Ocean.

Notable Canarians

* José de Anchieta, Jesuit priest and missionary.
* Rosana Arbelo, singer
* Javier Bardem, Actor.
* Bencomo, King
* Beneharo, King
* Agustín de Betancourt, engineer
* Manolo Blahnik, fashion designer
* Secundino Delgado, politician
* Oscar Dominguez, Painter.
* Doramas, warrior
* Nicolas Estevanez, politician
* Juan Carlos Fresnadillo, filmmaker
* Pedro García Cabrera, poet
* Fernando Guanarteme, king
* Pedro Guerra, singer
* K-narias, Reggaeton Pop Duo.
* Alfredo Kraus, opera singer
* Fernando León y Castillo, politician
* Maninidra, warrior
* Cesar Manrique, artist
* Manolo Millares, Painter
* Tomas Morales, poet
* Benito Perez Galdos, writer
* Tanausu, king
* Tinguaro, warrior general
* Juan Carlos Valerón, football player
* Alberto Vázquez-Figueroa, writer
* José Viera y Clavijo, historian.
* Rosanna Walls, Actress.
* Little Lupe, adult star

ee also

* White Cuban
* Nationalities in Spain
* Guanches
* Guanche language
* Isleños
* Canarian dialect


* []
* []
* []
* []

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