Definition of Nicaragua in US English:


proper noun

  • A country, the largest, in Central America, with a coastline on both the Atlantic and the Pacific oceans; population 6,100,000 (estimated 2015); capital, Managua; official language, Spanish.

    Colonized by the Spaniards, Nicaragua broke away from Spain in 1821 and became an independent republic in 1838. In 1979, the dictator Anastasio Somoza was overthrown by a popular revolution; the new left-wing Sandinista regime then faced a counterrevolutionary guerrilla campaign by the US-backed Contras. The Sandinistas lost power to an opposition coalition in the 1990 election and were defeated again in 1996 and 2001