Peru History: Independence Part I

By | December 21, 2021

Despite the decline and neglect of the motherland, Peru still constituted, at the beginning of the century. XIX, the political, moral and military center of Spain on the South American continent; and this – together with the greater geographical, political and economic isolation – explains how the independence movement in Peru took place later than the other South American countries, so much so that it appears, rather than an original movement, a repercussion of the events of these. Not that Peru was also lacking, with general discontent, that vague aspiration to a new society, of which individual and sporadic rumors and acts of rebellion were at the same time (notable the conspiracy of Aguilar, executed together with the ‘Ubalde in 1806); but the weight of traditional institutions, monarchical loyalty, the ties of blood, the unknown factor of the Indians, by far prevailed over the secessionist tendencies, and the viceroyalty of Peru was not only able in the first two decades of the nineteenth century to overcome the crisis of the metropolitan regime, but also – recovering Upper Peru – to threaten Buenos Aires itself in the south-east, to carry out a campaign to reconquer the Chilean territory in the south, to maintain the obedience of Quito and Guayaquil in the north. Only when Spain has lost Chile (1818) and the Colombian forces of Bolívar have seized Ecuador (1822) will the fate of Spain in Peru be decided. but also – recovering Upper Peru – threatening Buenos Aires itself in the south-east, carrying out a campaign to reconquer the Chilean territory in the south, maintaining the obedience of Quito and Guayaquil in the north. Only when Spain has lost Chile (1818) and the Colombian forces of Bolívar have seized Ecuador (1822) will the fate of Spain in Peru be decided. but also – recovering Upper Peru – threatening Buenos Aires itself in the south-east, carrying out a campaign to reconquer the Chilean territory in the south, maintaining the obedience of Quito and Guayaquil in the north. Only when Spain has lost Chile (1818) and the Colombian forces of Bolívar have seized Ecuador (1822) will the fate of Spain in Peru be decided. For Peru 2001, please check naturegnosis.com.

Having indeed emancipated Chile with the victories of Chacabuco and Maypo in 1817 and 1818, its small navy under the orders of Lord Cochrane, in 1820 threw 5000 Argentino-Chileni, under the command of the Argentine general San Martín, the hero of Chacabuco, on the coasts of Peru; on July 28, 1812, the liberating militias seized Lima and, amid popular enthusiasm, they proclaimed the country’s independence, of which San Martín himself was acclaimed “supreme dictator” on the following August 3. On September 20, 1822, the San Martín reviews its powers and the Congress, in which sovereign power has passed, elects the energetic but unskilled José de la Riva-Agüero as president of the newborn republic in February 1823, who is deposed shortly afterwards.. The Spanish resistance, however, encouraged and aided by the attempts of the royalists, continue to Callao as in the interior of the country; the patriots needed Colombian help and intervention. Simone Bolívar moved to Lima in September 1823, organized the Peruvian military forces and reported on 6 August 1824 in Junín, near Chinchaicocha, a signaled victory over the viceregal ones, which were then definitively defeated in Ayacucho on 9 December 1824 by the lieutenant of Bolívar, the General Sucre, left by him to Peru. The desperate charge, with which the 6000 men of the Sucre try to break through the 10,000 Spanish veterans of the viceroy La Serna, turns into the brilliant victory, with which – the viceroy surrendered and his forces broken – the Spanish domination in Peru;

However, with independence, Peru did not regain its historical-geographical unity: Upper Peru, coveted by the newborn republics of Río de la Plata and Peru, left by both (formally at least) free to decide their own fate, in the Congress of Chuquisaca instead proclaimed itself independent with the name of Bolivia (11 August 1825). Nor, on the other hand, did Bolívar succeed, having broken the greatest dream of a South American federation similar to the North American one at the Hispano-American congress of 1826, to constitute at least a more restricted confederation between Peru, Bolivia and Colombia with a single capital. and a single life leader with dictatorial powers. The centrifugal forces of provincial separatism and personalism, inherited from Spanish rule, triumphed in Peru no less than in other countries: Bolivian Código, a work of personal inspiration by Bolívar himself.

As soon as the Libertador actually left the country (September 1826), leaving the government to the shrewd general Andrés Santa Cruz, a Bolivian mestizo from Guarina, as president of the Supreme Council, the ferment already alive against the bossy Libertadoras soldiers of Colombia broke out in rebellion open. In March 1827 they were driven out and a cabildo provisionally requested and obtained from Santa Cruz the convocation of a Congress, which, having abrogated the Bolívar charter a “imposed (he said) with violence and adopted against the will of the people”, on 16 June 1827 provisionally re-established (the new one will have in 1828) the constitution of 1823: in place of the resigning Santa Cruz, José de La Mar, the general who had commanded the Peruvian forces in Ayacucho, was elected president. He, exposed internally to the attacks of the Bolivarians and threatened externally by the military preparations of General Sucre, president of Bolivia, had it invaded by General Gamarra with 5,000 men to overthrow the Bolivarian president there as well, together with the constitution. With the Treaty of Piquiza (6 July 1828) the Sucre withdrew from Bolivia.

Peru Independence