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Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Greetings Infomaniacs,

This summer, all eyes will be on Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, for the 2016 Summer Olympics. "Rio" may recall images Christ the Redeemer overlooking the city, soccer games on beaches and colorful Carnival floats. Below are a few fun facts about the place nicknamed Cidade Maravilhosa, or Marvelous City.

Enjoy!

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WHO SAID IT?

QUOTE: "You walk off the plane in Rio, and your blood temperature goes up. The feel of the wind on your face, the water on your skin, the taste of the food, the music, the sexuality; Brazilians are very comfortable in their sexuality."

HINT: An American actress nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for Yentl (1983) and for the Golden Globe for Best Actress in a Musical or Comedy for Crossing Delancey (1988).

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RANDOM TIDBITS

According to tradition, the spot now called Rio de Janeiro was first visited in January 1502 by Portuguese explorers, who believed the bay they encountered (now called Guanabara Bay) was the mouth of a river. They named the area named Rio de Janeiro, 'River of January.' This etymology is widely accepted, although some scholars argue that in 16th-century Portuguese, a rio might have been a looser term for any deep indentation along a coast--meaning those explorers weren't quite as confused as they might seem.

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Prospectors discovered gold in Brazil in the 1690s, and diamonds a few decades later. As the closest port to the mines, Rio boomed--and the French noticed. Already embroiled in a war with the Portuguese, they sent privateers to attack in 1711, bombarding Rio until the Portuguese governor fled, taking most of the population with him. The governor, Francisco de Castro Morais, eventually negotiated Rio back for 612,000 gold cruzados and 100 chests of sugar, but the Portuguese sentenced him to exile in Portuguese India for being such a coward.

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o was capital of Brazil from 1763 until 1960, when that role was transferred to Brasilia. But from 1808 to 1822, Rio also served as the center for the exiled royal court of Portugal, then fleeing Napoleon's invasion. Prince Regent Dom Joao VI arrived with the rest of the royal family in 1808--the first time a European monarch set foot in the Americas. In December 1815, Dom Joao made Rio the official capital of the Portuguese empire, a role it served until Brazil declared independence from Portugal in September 1822.

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Rio explodes with energy and color during the five days before Ash Wednesday, when millions take to the streets for the world's biggest Carnival. The party starts on the Friday, when the mayor hands over the keys to the city to a man crowned as King Momo, a mythical jester who acts as the head of the festivities. The party reaches its height at the Sambodromo, when the best samba schools in the country compete for top prize. The results are announced on Ash Wednesday, when Carnival is officially over, and King Momo goes home.

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On July 16, 1950, 173,850 paid spectators packed into the Maracana stadium, then the world's biggest, for the final game of the 1950 World Cup. An estimated ten percent of Rio's population watched as Uruguay snatched victory from the Brazilians. The game holds the world record for the highest attendance at any soccer match, ever. The stadium has since become a national symbol, what The New York Times calls a 'cathedral of soccer,' and is set to host the opening and closing ceremonies of the 2016 Summer Olympics.




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What falls but never breaks, and breaks but never falls?

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WHO SAID IT?

QUOTE: "You walk off the plane in Rio, and your blood temperature goes up. The feel of the wind on your face, the water on your skin, the taste of the food, the music, the sexuality; Brazilians are very comfortable in their sexuality."

ANSWER: Amy Irving

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