Carioca (Portuguese pronunciation: [kaɾiˈɔkɐ] (listen) or [kɐɾiˈɔkɐ]) is a demonym used to refer to anything related to the City of Rio de Janeiro, in Brazil. The original meaning of the term is controversial, maybe from Tupi language "kari' oka", meaning "white house" as the whitewashed stone houses of European settlers or even the colonists themselves, by merging "kara'iwa" (white man) and "oka" (house). Currently, the more accepted origin in academia is the meaning derived from "kariîó oka", which comes from the indigenous tupi "house of carijó", which was Guaraní, a native tribe of Rio de Janeiro who lived in the vicinity of the Carioca River, between the neighborhoods of Glória and Flamengo.

Like other Brazilians, cariocas speak Portuguese. The carioca accent and sociolect (also simply called "carioca", see below) are one of the most widely recognized in Brazil, in part because TV Globo, the second-largest television network in the world, is headquartered in Rio de Janeiro. Thus, many Brazilian TV programs, from news and documentary to entertainment (such as the telenovelas), feature carioca-acting and -speaking talent.

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