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Santos (sänˈtōs) [key], city (1996 pop. 412,288), São Paulo state, SE Brazil, on the island of São Vicente in the Atlantic just off the mainland. It is 40 mi (64 km) SE of the city of São Paulo, with which it is linked by rail and by the Via Anchieta highway. Santos is the world's greatest coffee port and the chief shipping point for the rich interior of São Paulo state. It handles the major share of Brazilian exports, including, besides coffee, oranges, bananas, cotton, and industrial products. Along its spacious harbor there are more than 4 mi (6 km) of modern wharves. Santos was founded c.1540 near the settlement of São Vicente. It was sacked by the English in 1591. Santos is a fashionable residential area and resort center with fine beaches.

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

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