from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • A former Spanish viceroyalty (1521-1821) in North America, including the southwest United States, Mexico, Central America north of Panama, and some West Indian islands. It also included the islands of the Philippines.
  • The former Spanish possessions in the New World. At its greatest extent, New Spain comprised South America (except Brazil), Central America, Mexico, the West Indies, Florida, and much of the land west of the Mississippi River.


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  • This is a good one. It’s a fine enough name for a province (especially one that isn’t autonomous); that they would spell it in all caps is the icing on the cake. (The definition belongs under Colonial Mexico, by the way.)

    October 20, 2011