Puebla (Spanish pronunciation: [ˈpweβla]), officially the Free and Sovereign State of Puebla (Spanish: Estado Libre y Soberano de Puebla) is one of the 31 states which, with the Federal District, comprise the 32 Federal Entities of Mexico. It is divided in 217 municipalities and its capital city is Puebla.
It is located in East-Central Mexico. It is bordered by the states of Veracruz to the north and east, Hidalgo, México, Tlaxcala and Morelos to the west, and Guerrero and Oaxaca to the south.
The origins of the state lie in the city of Puebla, which was founded by the Spanish in this valley in 1531 to secure the trade route between Mexico City and the port of Veracruz.
By the end of the 18th century, the area had become a colonial province with its own governor, which would become the State of Puebla, after the Mexican War of Independence in the early 19th century. Since that time the area, especially around the capital city, has continued to grow economically, mostly through industry, despite being the scene of a number of battles, the most notable of which being the Battle of Puebla. Today, the state is one of the most industrialized in the country, but since most of its development is concentrated in Puebla and other cities, many of its rural areas are very poor, forcing many to migrate away to places such as Mexico City and the United States.
Culturally, the state is home to the China Poblana, mole poblano, active literary and arts scenes and festivals such as Cinco de Mayo, Ritual of Quetzalcoatl, Day of the Dead celebrations (especially in Huaquechula) and Carnival (especially in Huejotzingo). It is home to five major indigenous groups: Nahuas, the Totonacas, the Mixtecas, the Popolocas and the Otomi, which can mostly be found in the far north and the far south of the state.