Definition of Mapuche in English:

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Pronunciation: /maˈpo͝oCHē/

noun (plural same or Mapuches)

1A member of an American Indian people of central Chile and adjacent parts of Argentina, noted for their resistance to colonial Spanish and later Chilean domination.
Example sentences
  • In the south of the country, there were many tomas (land seizures) between November 1970 and April 1971, resulting in confrontations between farmers, campesinos and Mapuches (local indigenous people).
  • During the period of military rule in the 1970s and 1980s, employment opportunities and working conditions were closely linked to the Mapuches' struggle to preserve their ethnic identity.
  • Because Benetton's land is well fenced in other areas and Santa Rosa was known among Mapuche to be unoccupied, the family believed the plot was available.
2The Araucanian language of the Mapuche.
Example sentences
  • Spanish is the main language, but a handful of native languages including Aymara, Mapuche and Rapa Nui are also spoken.


Relating to the Mapuche or their language.
Example sentences
  • In addition, Chilean speech contains many words adopted from the Mapuche language as well as much chilenismos.
  • The Mapuche medicine woman or machi (doctor, priest and pharmacist all in one) say that their source of livelihood is being directly threatened by the desiccation of native forests.
  • A majority of Mapuche town dwellers live as urban workers.


The name in Mapuche, from mapu 'land' + che 'people'.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: Ma·pu·che

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