Provinces of Brazil

The provinces of Brazil were the primary subdivisions of the country during the period of the Empire of Brazil (1822 - 1889).

On February 28, 1821, provinces were established in the Kingdom of Brazil (then still part of the United Kingdom of Portugal, Brazil and the Algarves) superseding the captaincies that were in place at the time.

Provinces of 1821

Provinces of the Brazilian Empire in 1825.
A map showing the Empire and its provinces
The Empire of Brazil, c. 1889. Cisplatina had been lost since 1828 and two new provinces had been created since then (Amazonas and Paraná)
Name Entity since Note
Alagoas Province 1817 Capitania de Alagoas split from the Capitania de Pernambuco
Bahia Province 1501
Ceará Province 1822
Cisplatina Province 1821 Oriental Province (present-day Uruguay) annexed by the Crown of Portugal and incorporated in Brazil under the name of Província Cisplatina.)
Espírito Santo Province 1534
Goiás Province 1744 Capitania Geral de Goiás split from Capitania Geral de São Paulo
Grão-Pará Province 1775
Maranhão Province 1535
Mato Grosso Province 1748
Minas Gerais Province 1720
Paraíba Province 1574
Piaui Province 1718 Split from the Estado do Maranhão as the Capitania do Piauí
Pernambuco Province 1534
Rio de Janeiro Province 1565
Rio Grande do Norte Province 1530 created as the Capitania do Rio Grande
Santa Catarina Province 1738 Capitania de Santa Catarina split from the Capitania de São Paulo
São Paulo Province 1720 Capitania de São Paulo split from the Capitania de São Paulo e Minas de Ouro
São Pedro do Rio Grande do Sul Province 1760
Sergipe Province 1590

Changes from 1821-1889


The captaincies of Brazil are renamed provinces.

The present-day Uruguay is occupied by the Portuguese Army and incorporated in Brazil as its Cisplatine Province.


Independence of Brazil, with the provinces becoming provinces of the Empire of Brazil.


The last Brazilian provinces that remained loyal to the Portuguese Government in Lisbon adhere to the Empire of Brazil.


Cisplatina Province became the independent state of Uruguay.


Rio de Janeiro City, the imperial capital, was removed from the Province of Rio de Janeiro, becoming not part of any province and being designated Neutral Municipality. At the same time, the capital of the Province of Rio de Janeiro was transferred to Niterói.


Grão-Pará Province split into Amazonas Province and Pará Province.


In 1889 the Empire of Brazil became the Republic of the United States of Brazil and the provinces became states. The Neutral Municipality that included Rio de Janeiro City became the Federal District.

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