[ gwah-tuh-mah-luh; Spanish gwah-te-mah-lah ]

  1. a republic in northern Central America. 42,042 sq. mi (108,889 sq km).

  2. Also called Gua·te·ma·la Cit·y. a city in and the capital of the republic of Guatemala.

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Other words from Guatemala

  • Gua·te·ma·lan, adjective, noun

Words Nearby Guatemala Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use Guatemala in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for Guatemala


/ (ˌɡwɑːtəˈmɑːlə) /

  1. a republic in Central America: original Maya Indians conquered by the Spanish in 1523; became the centre of Spanish administration in Central America; gained independence and was annexed to Mexico in 1821, becoming an independent republic in 1839. Official language: Spanish. Religion: Roman Catholic majority. Currency: quetzal and US dollar. Capital: Guatemala City. Pop: 14 373 472 (2013 est). Area: 108 889 sq km (42 042 sq miles)

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Cultural definitions for Guatemala


Republic in Central America, bordered by Mexico to the west and north, Belize and the Caribbean Sea to the east, Honduras and El Salvador to the southeast, and the Pacific Ocean to the south. Its capital and largest city is Guatemala City.

Notes for Guatemala

The country is noted for its particularly low average income and literacy rate.

Notes for Guatemala

It is traditionally unstable politically.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.