A country of southeast South America on the Atlantic Ocean and the Río de la Plata. The area was first settled in the 1600s by the Spanish and Portuguese, with Spain establishing sole dominance after 1724. Uruguay declared independence from Spain in 1810 and from Argentina in 1814, struggling against Brazillian occupation to finally achieve independent nationhood in 1828. Montevideo is the capital and the largest city. Population: 3,460,000.