The Dominican Republic’s first constitution was adopted on November 6, 1844. The state was commonly known as Santo Domingo in English until the early 20th century.
Founded during the reign of Charles I of Spain, it was originally a seminary operated by Catholic monks of the Dominican Order. Later, the institution received a university charter by Pope Paul III’s papal bull.
Dating from 1493, when the Spanish settled on the island, and officially from 5 August 1498, Santo Domingo became the oldest European city in the Americas.
The Arawak tribe originated in the Orinoco Delta, spreading from Venezuela. They traveled to Hispaniola around 1200 CE.
For at least 5,000 years before Christopher Columbus discovered America for the Europeans, the island, which he named Hispaniola, was inhabited by indigenous peoples whom he called “Indians.”