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Xalapa

Administration
Official nameXalapa-Enríquez
Native nameXalapa
Settlement typeMunicipality and City
CountryMexico
StateVeracruz
Founded1772
Government
Municipal PresidentElizabeth Morales García (PRI)
SyndicAntonio Ballesteros Grayeb
Geography
Total Area45.7 sq mi (118.45 km2)
Demography
Total Population525147 (2009 estimate)
Metro (pop.)809206
Other information
- Summer (DST)-6 (UTC-5)

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Xalapa-Enríquez, commonly Xalapa or Jalapa, is the capital city of the Mexican state of Veracruz and the name of the surrounding municipality. In the year 2005 census the city reported a population of 387,879 and the municipality of which it serves as municipal seat reported a population of 413,136. The municipality has an area of 118.45 km2. Xalapa lies near the geographic center of the state and is the second-largest city in the state after the city of Veracruz.

Xalapa comes from the Nahuatl roots xal-li "sand" and a-pan "water place", which approximately means "spring in the sand." It is classically pronounced -nahʃaˈlapan in Nahuatl, though the final [n] is often omitted; the [ʃ] sound (like English sh) was written x in the 16th century, but does not occur in modern Spanish, and its counterpart is the [x] or [h] sound, normally written j. The spelling Xalapa (like the word México) reflects the archaic pronunciation. The full name of the city is Xalapa-Enríquez, named in honor of 19th-century Governor Juan de la Luz Enríquez. Its name is pronounced -esxaˈlapa in Spanish and -enhəˈlɑːpə in English. The city's nickname "La ciudad de las flores" (The City of Flowers), was bestowed by Alexander von Humboldt, who visited the town on 10 February 1804. However, the reference is firmly embedded in its earlier colonial history. In folklore, the Spaniards believed that Xalapa was the birthplace and home of the "Florecita", which literally means little flower.


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