Paraná (river, Brazil, Paraguay, and Argentina)
Paraná, river, c.2,000 mi (3,200 km) long, formed by the junction of the Paranaíba and the Rio Grande, SE Brazil. It has the second largest drainage system in South America. It flows generally southwest to its confluence with the Paraguay River, forming the southern border of Paraguay, then S and E through NE Argentina to join the Uruguay River in a huge delta at the head of the Río de la Plata. The lower Paraná is hampered by shifting channels, sandbars, and fluctuating river flow, and is subject to flooding. The stretch along the Brazil-Paraguay border flows in a deep bed and is broken by many waterfalls, now submerged under the large Itaipú Dam, built in the late 20th cent. Downstream at Encarnación, Paraguay, the river is crossed by the Yacyretá dam. The Paraná is the principal commercial artery of interior SE South America. Navigable for oceangoing vessels (via a dredged channel) to Rosario and Santa Fe in Argentina, the Paraná accommodates river craft to the Iguaçu River. A bridge over the river at Foz do Iguaçu links Brazil and Paraguay. The Paraná was first ascended (1526) by Sebastian Cabot, the English explorer in the service of Spain.
Paraná (state, Brazil)
Paraná (pərənä´), state (1996 pop. 8,985,981), 77,048 sq mi (199,554 sq km), S Brazil, on the borders of Paraguay and Argentina and the Atlantic Ocean. The capital is Curitiba. After coffee, the principal crops are tea, peanuts, and cotton. There are mining and lumbering industries, a pickup truck factory, and two universities.
Paraná (city, Argentina)
Paraná (päränä´), city (1991 pop. 211,966), capital of Entre Ríos prov., NE Argentina, a port on the Paraná River. It is the center of a grain and cattle district; there is an agricultural school nearby. Founded in 1730, Paraná was the capital of the Argentine confederation from 1853 to 1862. Points of interest include a cathedral and a provincial museum.