Uruguay: The country which LOVES Greece more than you know


In South America, the Greek Spirit lives and reigns! In Uruguay there are thousands of Uruguayans who speak fluent Greek and many of them... Ancient Greek.

In Uruguay there is the paradoxical phenomenon - there are over 3,000 Greek immigrants and twice as many Uruguayans who speak Greek. In this small Latin American country, its citizens are not just philhellenes, they are Greek-lovers.

Statue of Prometheus in Montevideo's Avenida Independencia palace
Statue of Prometheus in Montevideo's Avenida Independencia palace.

In a recent Eurostat survey, the majority of Uruguayan respondents answered that they culturally identify with Europe, and to the second question about which country from Europe comes first on their mind, the majority answered: Greece.

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A public school in Uruguay is called Grecia (Greece). The students are all Uruguayan children. So are their teachers. But every March 25th and October 28th they celebrate like Greeks. Songs, plays, poems. Hear from these little children our national anthem.

Inside the capital of Uruguay there are 23 streets with Greek ancient philosophers while there is the square of Athens and the square of Greece.

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Outside the National Library of Montevideo, a building based on the Doric style has a statue of Socrates on the outside, next to the entrance. On the beach, a park is called Athens and has a bust of Homer.

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The main street of the old town is called Grecia. One of the most beautiful neoclassical buildings in the centre of the city reads: Athenaios on its façade. In all bookstores you will find books by Greek authors and poets. Even in very small ones.

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Uruguay is one of the smallest countries in South America. It is slightly larger in area than Greece and has a population of approximately 3,500,000 and is located between Argentina and Brazil.

Due to its small size, it does not have the economic or political power of its neighbours at the international level. However, when one compares data that have a real impact on the lives of citizens, one notices that it surpasses the rest of the South American countries.

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Some of these are equality, economic and gender, low rates of poverty and corruption, high trust in institutions; and high rates of literacy. Its equality, democratic tradition, trust between citizens-States and its safe banking system have earned it the designation the Switzerland of the Americas.

Uruguay is one of the few countries that has not recognised Skopje as Macedonia, it is a country that supports us in all our issues. In addition, it is one of the first countries to recognise the newly formed Greek state shortly after the revolution of 1821.

Its flag is almost identical to the Greek one except - instead of a cross it has a happy sixteen-pointed sun.

National motto: Libertad o Muerte = Freedom or Death

READ MORE: The History and Contributions of the Greeks of Africa.