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Chorotega (chōrōtāˈgä) [key], aboriginal people and language group of Honduras, Nicaragua, and Costa Rica. Little is known of the Chorotega, primarily beause of the absence of extensive ruins. Contemporaneous with the Maya to the northwest, they inhabited principally the Ulúa River valley and the Mosquito Coast. With other tribes to the south and the Chibcha of Colombia, they formed a cultural link between the peoples of the Andean area and those of Mexico. The Chorotega were probably democratic, with a chief chosen by elected council. Chorotega culture became extinct in the Spanish colonial period.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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