It is bordered by Paraguay and Bolivia in the north, Brazil and Uruguay in the northeast, and Chile in the west and south. The country claims the British controlled territories of the Falkland Islands (Spanish: Islas Malvinas) and South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands.
When the first Spanish conquistadors discovered the Río de la Plata, they named the estuary fresh water sea). Indigenous people gave gifts of silver to the survivors of the shipwrecked expedition, who were led by Juan Díaz de Solís. The legend of Sierra del Plata – a mountain rich in silver – reached
The name Argentina (from Latin argentum: silver) was first used extensively in the 1612 book Historia del descubrimiento, población, y conquista del Río de
European explorers arrived in 1516. Spain established a permanent colony on the site of Buenos Aires in 1580; the Viceroyalty of the Río de la Plata was created in 1776. During the early part of this period it was largely a country of Spanish immigrants and their descendants, known as criollos, some of them gathered in the Buenos Aires and other cities, others living on the pampas as gauchos. Descendants of African slaves (See:Afro-Argentines) were present in significant numbers. Indigenous peoples inhabited much of the rest of