In the 18th century, 600,000 Portuguese arrived (6,000 per year). These Christian Levantine immigrants were wrongly called "Turks" by many Brazilians because their original countries were still under Ottoman rule back in the period when their immigration to Brazil began. After five years, in 1880, the great numbers of Italian immigrants arriving caused the Brazilian government to create another Italian colony, Caxias do Sul. [2] With a total population of 211,531,000 as of 2020[update], Brazil is the sixth most populated country in the world. Today, the birth rate is 1.77 births per woman, which is lower than the U.S. rate. Pena of the Federal University of Minas Gerais have shown that the caboclo population is made of individuals whose DNA ranges from 70% to 90% European (mostly Portuguese, Spanish, Dutch, French or Italian 1500s to 1700s male settlers) with the remaining percentage spanning different Indigenous markers. In fact, Brazil has the world’s largest Catholic population of 123 million people. The Amerindians make up 0.4% of Brazil's population, or about 700,000 people. The birth rate in Brazil has dropped a great deal since the 1970s, when women had an average of over 4 children. The vast majority of Brazilians have at least some African heritage. To attract the immigrants, the Brazilian government had promised large tracts of land, where they could settle with their families and colonize the region. "Brazilian homogeneity is, therefore, a lot greater between Brazilian regions than within Brazilian regions". After initially settling in the government-promoted colonies, many of the Italian immigrants spread themselves into other areas of Rio Grande do Sul seeking further opportunities. The pardo category in Brazil also includes 800 thousand gypsies or Roma people, most of them coming from Portugal but also different countries in Eastern Europe and the Baltics. The main religion in Brazil is Christianity, and around 90% of the population is either Catholic (65%) or Protestant (22%). [51] In the South, the immigrants established rural communities that, still today, have a strong cultural connection with their ancestral homelands. Until the mid-20th century, Central-West Brazil had a very small population. On the other hand, São Paulo is the state with the lowest rate, 1.38 children per woman. The first immigrants arrived in 1869 and until 1959, it is estimated that over 100,000 Poles migrated to Brazil,[92] 95% of whom were peasants. Migrants (net): The average annual number of immigrants minus the number of emigrants over the preceding five year period (running from July 1 to June 30 of the initial and final years), or subsequent five year period (for 2016 data).

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