How to use my mnemonic order for South America and some other memorable stuff.

It can be used as a cryptomnemonic.

It isn’t obviously a mnemonic, when presented as a list of the 13 nations of South America, without the verses, and without any mention of meridians or parallels. Thus it would be allowed in a school that didn’t believe in memorization or mnemonics. Or it could be sneaked in under the radar.

Colombia, Peru, Chile.

I like to call them the ‘Chile triplet’, ‘Chile three’, or ‘the tall three’. The latter name reminds one that it contains both the northern and southern tips of the continent. Also I sometimes call it the ‘Chile-spoiled triplet’, because Chile spoils the pattern of areas getting larger as you go from Colombia to Chile, and, more importantly, from Colombia to Brazil.

Argentina, Brazil, Venezuela.

I like to call this triplet the ‘Venezuela triplet’, the ‘Venezuela three’, ‘the wide three’, or ‘the big three’. The widest and biggest member of the triplet is Brazil, and it is about as wide as it is tall. It almost reaches the Pacific Ocean. Part of it is actually north of the Pacific Ocean. Nearly all of Chile is due south of Brazil. About half of Peru is due south of Brazil. About half of Colombia is due north of Brazil. All the other countries except Ecuador are entirely due south or due north of Brazil. Ecuador is the one country with no part sharing a meridian with Brazil. Another good reason for it to be last in the list. Brazil’s extreme wideness is unusual for a large South American country. Most of them are more tall than wide. This is probably due the shape of the continent, which is narrow and tall, and the enormous mountain range that runs down it. Countries tend not to straddle mountain ranges, and especially not enormous, difficult-to-cross ones. This mountain range, which is called the Andes, is the reason Chile is shaped like it is, but Chile’s shape was not the only one to be affected by it. Chile’s shape is a dramatic and crystal clear case though.

Thoughts on the first two triplets.

Brazil is the middle and the biggest of this triplet, and Peru is the middle and the biggest of the Chile (spoiled) triplet. And Brazil contains the eastern tip of the continent while Peru contains the western tip. So there’s a memorable pattern there. And they share a border, which makes it easier to visualize the pair, as they stretch from east to west (or vice versa). And the two tips are about equally far south of the equator, with the eastern being further south.

Guyana, Suriname, ‘France’.

I like to call it the ‘tiny triplet’ since if it became a single nation, it would be smaller than nearly every other nation in South America. Equador and Uruguay would be smaller, maybe also Paraguay. I also call it the ‘“France” triplet’,

Bolivia, Paraguay.

I call these the ‘Paraguay pair’, ‘the central pair’, or ‘the landlocked pair’.


I just call it ‘Uruguay’, although I could call it ‘the penultimate one’.


I call it ‘Ecuador’, but I could call it ‘the ultimate one’ or ‘the last one’.

The areas and shared borders of the Thirteen.

As described in detail in the article linked to at the top, by chance there is a pattern in the areas. Not a perfect pattern, and it only applies to the first nine members of the list, but it’s great. I call it the ‘Chile-spoiled pattern’ because Chile spoils it by being to small. If Chile were a bit bigger, it would be true to say that from first to fifth, the nations get bigger and bigger, and from then on, they get smaller and smaller, ending with ‘France’.


1. Is Peru the widest member of the Chile triplet?



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Matthew Christopher Bartsh

Matthew Christopher Bartsh

I always follow back. I usually follow anyone who makes an interesting or okay response to one my articles. I often clap. I never give fewer than fifty claps.