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Biographies: N‑P

This webpage reproduces part of
History of Chile

by
Luis Galdames

translated and edited by Isaac Joslin Cox
Russell & Russell
New York 1964

The text is in the public domain.

This page has been carefully proofread
and I believe it to be free of errors.
If you find a mistake though,
please let me know!


[image ALT: link to next section]
Biographies: T‑Z

p509 Biographical Notes
(continued: Q‑S)

Rodrigo de Quiroga (d. 1580) was a member of a noble Galician family. He came to Peru in 1535 and distinguished himself by his humane conduct in expeditions against the Indians. After joining Valdivia in Chile he filled various municipal offices in Santiago and became Valdivia's lieutenant and later the lieutenant of Hurtado de Mendoza. After Valdivia's death he was helpful in settling the dispute between Villagra (q.v.) and his chief rival. Enrolled as knight of the Order of Santiago, he was appointed governor of Chile in 1573 and served until 1578. — M, pp716‑719.

Pablo Ramírez Rodríguez (1886‑ ) received his training in private schools and at the Catholic University and became advocate in 1908. As a member of the radical party he held a seat as deputy (1912‑1921) and became minister of justice and instruction (1919) and of the treasury (1927) while also serving (1928‑29) as ad interim in the ministries of agriculture and of education. His attempted reforms in education and finance and his efforts in connection with Cosach (see p383 n.) aroused much opposition. — FV, 602‑605.

Alonso de Reinoso (1515‑156?) was born in the province of Toledo and in 1535 embarked for America. His earlier services took place in Central America and Yucatan with Montejo and Alvarado, and he accompanied the latter in his last campaigns in Mexico. He joined La Gasca in his campaigns against Hernando Pizarro and came to Chile with Villagra before the death of Valdivia. Assisting the latter in his southern campaigns, he helped found various cities, including Concepción, Valdivia, and Imperial and under Hurtado de Mendoza executed Caupolicán, as described in the text, "with more rigor and haste than p510forethought." Villagra made him lieutenant in Concepción. — M, pp729‑737.

Manuel Rengifo Cárdenas (1793‑1845) was born in Santiago. He early acquired an honorable reputation as a merchant in Chile and Peru and as such was employed by Bolívar at Lima to determine Peru's indebtedness to Chile. Becoming minister of the treasury in 1830, he performed laudable work in organizing that ministry and in meeting the existing deficit. By making Valparaiso a port of deposit for foreign merchandise, he greatly increased its importance and enlarged the national revenue. As minister in 1834 and in 1837, he prepared notable memoirs during his incumbency and also served as senator and plenipotentiary to Peru, with which republic he negotiated an important commercial treaty. — EI, 851; FV, 614‑615; Sotomayor Valdés, Historia de Chile, I, 36‑39, 201‑225, 276, 447.

Vicente Reyes Palazuelos (1835‑1918) received his title as advocate in 1858 and immediately connected himself with El ferrocarril and other papers associated with the liberal party. In 1861 he entered the chamber of deputies, where he was immediately recognized as an accurate and forceful debater. He participated in the reform movement of the early seventies, headed a cabinet for some months in 1877 and 1878, was elected to the senate in 1888, and served as its presiding officer. He condemned the revolutionary movement of 1891 but remained strictly neutral during that contest. In 1894 he was returned without opposition to the senate and remained a member of that body until his death — a tribute to his personal integrity and high principles. In his later public life his sterling character, free from pecuniary scandal or crooked political practice, contrasted sharply with that of most of his contemporaries. — FV, 624‑625.

Rafael de Riego y Núñez (1785‑1823) was a native of the Asturias and was educated in part at Oviedo. He enrolled in the Royal Guard in 1807 and distinguished himself in opposing the French invasion of the Peninsula until he was taken prisoner. During his captivity in France, he absorbed the revolutionary principles that later made him prominent in resisting the autocratic rule of Ferdinand VII. Certain indiscretions subjected him to the charge of disloyalty on which he was ultimately convicted and executed. — ELI, 513‑514.

Germán Riesco Errázuriz (1854‑1916) was born in Rancagua in a notable Chilean family of Leonese descent. His mother was a sister of the elder President Errázuriz. He gained the title of advocate in 1875, served in a minor capacity in the ministry of justice for five years and then for ten years in the court of appeals as relator and seven years as fiscal (prosecutor), and then passed to the same office in the supreme p511court. In 1809 he became liberal senator from Talca. Discreet and reserved in manner, he spoke little. His nomination for the presidency in 1901 by the liberal alliance came as a surprise to the country, for he was lacking in political experience and virtually unknown. As nephew of the elder Errázuriz and brother-in‑law of the recently deceased president, Riesco did not lack political insight and his character led each faction to support him in the hope of being able to profit from his family influence. His first ministry was of high caliber but speedily dissolved, to be followed by the usual ever-changing combinations that characterized the so‑called "parliamentary régime." Despite the prevalent party indiscipline and the president's own ill-health, the Riesco administration fared well in its treaties with Bolivia and Argentina and effected some improvement in public service. In later years public opinion rendered Riesco tardy justice. — FV, 630‑632.

Catalina de los Ríos (d. 1665) was connected with the Lisperguer family through her mother. The founder of that family came to Chile from Worms in 1557 with García Hurtado de Mendoza. Barros Arana (BIV, 400‑401) characterizes as doubtful many of the accusations against the earlier members of this family, although noting that some later seemed to flout the laws and the authorities with impunity. Señora Catalina was charged with poisoning her father, with murdering her lover (a member of the Order of St. John), and with other assassinations, fourteen in all. Brought before the royal audiencia in 1660, she escaped the consequences of her crimes through delay and bribery — methods which involved Governor Meneses. — B, III, 400‑402; M, pp464, 747.

Conrado Ríos Gallardo (1896‑ ) has held a prominent place in the liberal party since 1921. His reputation, however, rests largely upon his work as journalist, especially in connection with La nación, of which he became managing editor in 1926. As minister of foreign affairs and commerce (1927‑1929), he reorganized the ministry, and later served as special envoy to Spain and Peru. He was largely instrumental in bringing about better relations with Bolivia and Peru. He was one of the founders Hoy in 1931. — FV, 647‑649.

Manuel Rivas Vicuña (1880‑ ) entered congress as deputy in 1909 and became minister of the treasury in 1912. He was later a member of cabinets in 1922 and 1926, and headed the ministry that was displaced by Ibáñez in 1927. Popularly known as the "Great Rabbi of Liberalism," he has had a long and honorable career as journalist, law professor, and diplomat and is recognized as one of the most skillful politicians and debaters of the country. Most of his writings have appeared in the contemporary press. In politics he has been more successful p512 in defeating ministries than in building up successful cabinets. While an exile in Constantinople, he arbitrated a dispute between the Turks and the Greeks. Later he was the ambassador of Chile at Rome and a delegate at Geneva. — FIV, 663; Hoy, October 1, 1936, p23.

Galvarino Riveros Cárdenas (1833‑1892) was born in the province of Chiloé, educated in the old Military Academy, and began his naval service in 1848. He served well in minor positions, particularly in explorations, and became captain in 1870. As a result of the encounter at Angamos during which he coöperated with Latorre, he was promoted to vice-admiral, but his course provoked much controversy, and as a result he was forced to retire. Later his comrades rendered him justice and, in 1931 a monument was erected to his memory in Cunaco de Véliz. — FV, 666.

Julio A. Roca (1843‑1914) was born in Tucumán, of a distinguished Argentine family. He was a student in the Colegio Nacional of Uruguay, when at the age of fifteen he volunteered in the struggle between Buenos Aires and the confederation. He became lieutenant colonel in the war against Paraguay. In 1878 he took charge of the campaign against Patagonia which added many leagues of fertile land to the Argentine Republic and made Roca president in 1880. As chief executive he strove to improve communications and reorganize the army. After a mission to Europe, following his administration, he reëntered politics in 190, later became minister of the interior, and in 1898 was elected president for a second term. He retired to private life in 1904, and his only other public service was as special embassyº to Brazil in 1913. — ELI, 1083.

Manuel Rodríguez Ardoiza (1785‑1818) received the title of advocate in 1809 and was one of the first to take part in the revolutionary movement. He served Carrera loyally as secretary, but after the defeat at Rancagua he temporarily sought refuge in Argentina. He was one of the most faithful supporters of San Martín while there, but saw that his presence was more necessary in Chile. He soon left Argentina for his own country, in spite of the dangers to which his enterprises would subject him. He immediately brought together a goodly number of followers, and with them carried on a guerrilla warfare in the province of Colchagua, thus paving the way for San Martín. After Cancha Rayada, his presence of mind and his forceful character, with his example of energy and enthusiasm, reacted on the people and he was able to form a nucleus of resistance which contributed to the triumph of the Chilean forces at Maipú. In this battle he led a troop called the "Hussars of Death." Other military leaders, jealous of his popularity and prestige, charged him with adhesion to Carrera. He was arrested p513 and was being conducted to trial when he was assassinated by members of his guard, supposedly under secret orders from the government. — ELI, 1268; FV, 686.

Zoróbabel Rodríguez Benavides (1839‑1901) was born in Quillota and educated in the church schools of Valparaiso and Santiago. He carried on his law studies in the university section of National Institute, receiving his degree in 1864, but began writing for the press the preceding year and also published his first novel, an imitation of Cervantes. In 1864 he joined with the Amunátegui brothers and Abdón Cifuentes in publishing El independente, which soon became the leading conservative paper, and in 1867 Rodríguez assumed sole charge of it. In addition to twenty years' service as editor of that publication, he served as many years as deputy in congress, closely associated with the conservative leader Manuel José Irarrázaval (see p362 n). In 1872 he published a study of Bilbao which aroused bitter controversy. Domingo Arteaga Alemparte characterized him as a true journalist, but one censurable for his vindictive and ironical tendency. He published a notable Diccionario de chilenismos (Santiago, 1875), and Tratado de economía política (Valparaiso, 1894), much used both in Chile and in other republics, and other economic works. — FV, 680; Justo and Domingo Arteaga Alemparte, op. cit., pp121‑126.

Luis Rodríguez Velasco (1839‑1919) was the son of José Antonio Rodríguez (FV, 676‑677). Educated at the National Institute, he began his literary career in 1859 as collaborator on the review La semana (see p350). In 1865 he engaged in editorial work in Peru against the aggressions of Spain and on his return to Chile published his first book of poems. He edited numerous satirical and radical publications in association with the Arteaga Alemparte brothers (see p350) and produced plays that were well received. In 1888 he was elected senator. His version of Victor Hugo's Ruy Blas is considered one of the best in Spanish. He composed several stirring songs during the war with Peru, and has indeed been proclaimed one of the best poets of Hispanic America. — FV, 678.

José Santiago Rodríguez Zorrilla (1752‑1832) was born at Santiago. After completing his ecclesiastical studies and holding minor church and educational offices, he became bishop in 1816. Because of his strong attachment to the Spanish government, he was twice exiled and died in Madrid before he could return to Chile, but his ashes were taken to Santiago twenty years after his death. — ELI, 1322; FV, 693; M, pp756‑759.

José Antonio Rojas Uturguren (1732‑1817) was born in Santiago and educated in the University of San Felipe, where his scientific bent p514early manifested itself. As heir to an entailed estate he was early given military rank and served with distinction on the frontiers of Chile. When President Amat was transferred to Peru as viceroy, Rojas accompanied him as adviser and also filled subordinate military and civil offices. In 1770 he went to Spain to obtain royal permission to wed the daughter of a Peruvian officeholder. He achieved his purpose after eight years but the mortifying experience with official corruption and delay destroyed his loyalty to the king. He returned to Chile in 1780, bringing with him a library and modest scientific equipment that gained for him a doubtful reputation among his contemporaries. Becoming imbued with liberal ideas, he took part in the conspiracy planned by the Frenchmen, Berney and Gramusset. Although on detection his two companions were seized and punished, Rojas was not molested, doubtless because the authorities hesitated to proceed against one of so high a social position. His part in the preliminaries of independence sent him into exile on Juan Fernández Island and the hardships suffered there hastened his death. — ELI, 1397; M, p759; FV, 703.

Diego de Rosales (1601‑1677), born in Madrid, was already filling a university chair by 1626. Coming to Peru about that time, he went to Chile in 1629 and shortly thereafter took part in battles with the Indians. He then devoted himself to peaceful but dangerous missionary work and accompanied the Marqués de Baides in the negotiations that resulted in the Pact of Quillín (see p90). He continued his missionary work until it was broken up by the infamous Salazar brothers (see p112). He also did heroic work at Concepción in the earthquake of 1657 and headed the Jesuit college there. From 1666 to 1674 he was writing his most famous work, Historia general del reíno de Chile, which was not published until two centuries after (Valparaiso, 1878), when the manuscript came into the possession of Benjamín Vicuña Mackenna. Another work of his, La conquista espiritual de Chile, relating to the lives and work of the Jesuits, has far less merit. From 1666 to 1672 he was rector of the Colegio Máximo at Santiago. Even old age and infirmity could not diminish his zeal in converting the Indians. His historical work is his greatest monument. — BLII, 340; M, pp764‑767. See also Medina, Historia de la literatura colonial de Chile, Vol. II, chap. vii.

Juan Enrique Rosales Fuentes (17?‑1825) was the son of a Spanish merchant; but his mother was a Chilean, Margarita Fuentes y Solar. Through his own marriage he was connected with the powerful Larraín clan. As a youth he spent several years on the Peninsula. By 1801 he was established in Santiago and in July, 1808, he was elected to the cabildo of Santiago as one of the twelve representatives of the p515colonial aristocracy. When named as a member of the junta in 1810, his knowledge of politics and of human nature, coupled with his experience in Spain, probably made him its most brilliant member. He was a member of the tribunal that condemned Lieutenant Colonel Tomás de Figueroa and was exiled to Juan Fernández. — BVIII, 29, 317; FV, 713.

Juan Manuel de Rosas (1793‑1877), the Argentine dictator, received a mediocre education and hence always distrusted men of learning. He volunteered for service against the English during their second attack on Buenos Aires and then entered upon a training in ranch life which gave him the characteristic qualities of the Gaucho — strength, agility, and cleverness. In the welter of party strife was marked the decade of the twenties, Rosas, who had now become a leader among the plainsmen, at first followed Dorrego. After the latter's death he turned his arms against Lavalle and after defeating him became governor of the province of Buenos Aires. At first regarded with favor by those who hoped for a moderate but orderly government, he adopted a despotic course that alienated the better classes of the population. Secure in the support of the masses, he was granted the exercise of all the powers of government and, aided by his force of assassins known as the mazorca, he carried on his tyrannous regime for twenty-three years, until a combination of domestic foes, aided by contingents from Uruguay and Brazil, overthrew him in the battle of Monte Caseros on February 3, 1852. He spent the remainder of his life in England. Despite his tyranny, he must be given credit for establishing the federal system of government in Argentina. — ELII, 377. See also E. Quesada, La época de Rosas (Buenos Aires, 1898) and W. S. Robertson, "Foreign Estimates of the Argentine Dictator Juan Manuel Rosas" in Hisp. Amer. Hist. Rev., X (May, 1930), 125‑137.

Gustavo Ross Santa María (1879‑ ) was born in Valparaiso. He is of Scotch Chilean descent and related to the Edwards family. In business from his youth, especially coal mining, he has also acquired a reputation as a speculator. He was an unsuccessful candidate for the senate in 1924 and was banished in 1927. In 1932 his appointment as minister of the treasury aroused both hope and distrust. His friends strongly supported his financial policy and it must be said that he did much to reëstablish the credit of the country. In 1936 he resigned his office and went to Paris, ostensibly to push the sales of Chilean nitrate, but really to await the political campaign of 1938. In this contest he failed to gain the coveted presidency. — FV, 717; Hoy, December 23, 1932, p8; August 13, 1936, p12.

Martín Ruiz de Gamboa (b. 1531) came to America after service in p516the Levant and in 1552 went to Chile. He served with varying success in the Araucanian wars, was made lieutenant by Governor Rodrigo de Quiroga, and in that capacity founded the town of Castro on the island of Chiloé. His patron in 1577 left him as governor ad interim and the king, four years later, confirmed him in that post. He acquired a reputation as "a good soldier, a careful administrator, a diligent warrior," notable for his gallantry, courtesy, and liberality, feared by malefactors and beloved by men of good repute. The ordinance that bears his name was adopted upon the insistence of the king and provided for a personal tribute of nine pesos annually from each Indian in the bishopric of Santiago and seven pesos in the bishopric of Imperial. The greater part of this tribe was to be paid to the encomenderos. The ordinance aroused so much opposition that church penalties were necessary to enforce it, and the Indians, unable to pay in money, had their tribute reduced to a labor basis. — BIII, 8‑11; M, pp774‑776.

Francisco Ruiz Tagle Portales (d. 1860), proprietor of an entailed estate in Los Andes, was deputy from that community in the congress of 1811 and an active participant in the program of that body. Nevertheless he was not proscribed during the Spanish reconquest, but held municipal offices in Santiago under the restored regime and as governor ad interim delivered the city to the patriots after Chacabuco. After Maipú (and a forced contribution to the cause), he again became an avowed patriot, holding various local and congressional offices during the disturbed years that followed the abdication of O'Higgins. On the eve of Lircay (see p236) he was selected by Portales as president ad interim, but soon resigned. Thereafter, he was not active politically. Barros Arana (BXV, 374, et seq.) discusses at some length the constitutional question involved in the election of 1828. See also FV, 730.

José Santos Salas (18 ‑) was a military surgeon who had had some practical experience in Spain before 1920. He took a prominent part in the revolution of 1925 and after the return of Alessandri served as minister of hygiene. In this post he gained considerable popularity by favoring better and cheaper dwellings for laborers — a popularity which failed to bring him into the presidency. But his conservative opponent, Emiliano Figueroa Larraín, was then elected. Under Ibáñez in 1927 he again served as minister of hygiene and, as ad interim minister of education and justice, favored educational reforms that could not be carried out because of lack of funds. He was forced out of office in 1928 and has since resided in Italy. — Hoy, February 19, 1936, p21.

Manuel de Salas Corvalán (1755‑1841), Chilean politician and economist, was born in Santiago. He early filled municipal and other local offices and as a member of the tribunal de consulado prepared in p5171796 a valuable memorial on the economic state of Chile, based on the views of Adam Smith. This was published for the first time in 1843. Salas was well known as a sincere patriot and philanthropist of advanced ideas and of untiring activity. He worked unceasingly to encourage agriculture, mining, industry, and education, and was largely instrumental in the founding of the Hospicio (orphanage), the Academía de San Luis, the National Institute, and the National Library. — M, p794; ELIII, 163; BVII, 369, n. 9. A portrait of him appears in B, facing p224.

Dario Enrique Salas Díaz (1881‑ ) was born in Imperial and educated in the normal schools of Chillán and in the Pedagogic Institute in Santiago. In 1907 he received the doctor's degree in pedagogy from Colombia University, where his daughter later obtained the same degree. The father became professor of pedagogy in 1908 in the Normal School of Santiago and later in the Pedagogic Institute, and translated educational books. In 1918 he became director-general of primary education, and as such was largely instrumental in securing the adoption of a law of compulsory instruction. Under his direction there was a great improvement in the quality of teaching and marked increase in enrollment in primary schools, and in the number and quality of school buildings. He was especially interested in matters of health and in the pay and training of teachers. He carried through these betterments in spite of much opposition. In 1927 he sent twenty-four teachers abroad on special missions to the United States and Europe in order to make a general survey of all aspects of education. In 1929 he was sent on a special tour of study to the United States and Europe, and in 1931 he was elected dean of the faculty of philosophy and social sciences of the University of Chile, but later resigned. At present (1940) he is teaching in the Pedagogic Institute. — FV, 746‑748.

Juan Francisco Sánchez (1757‑?) was a native of Galicia. He began his military career at the age of sixteen. Twenty years later he was sent to Concepción, with the rank of captain. He was noted for his extreme fidelity to the royalist cause, and this quality, rather than his technical military knowledge or his general culture, led Pareja to designate him as his successor. — BIX, 126.

Eulogio Sánchez Errázuriz ( ?‑ ) came into prominence in 1932 as head of the Republican Militia. A year after the dissolution of this force he sought to unite its elements under a new designation, Acción nacional, opposing traditional party methods and the course of President Alessandri. — Hoy, October 29, 1936, p24.

Pedro Sancho de Hoz (d. 1547) shared in the capture and despoiling of Atahualpa, wrote an account of that event, as secretary to p518Pizarro and then returned to his municipal post and a lucrative marriage in Toledo, Spain. In 1539 he obtained permission to make discoveries in the region below the grants to Pizarro and Almagro, which enabled him to thrust himself upon Valdivia and plot against his associate, thereby bringing about his own execution (see p43).ºM, p803.

Enrique Salvador Sanfuentes Andonaegui (1848‑ ), son of the illustrious poet, Salvador Sanfuentes (see below), was born in Santiago, studied in the National Institute and the university, and received his degree in law in 1870. He practiced his profession, amassed a fortune in business, interested himself in educational problems, and in 1888 entered congress as deputy from Rancagua. As minister under Balmaceda he furthered many notable works of that administration. His nomination as minister of the interior inaugurated the chain of events that brought on the civil war of 1891. Nevertheless he later parted company with Balmaceda and failed to support that chief in the struggle with congress. After the war he headed the liberal-democratic party that continued Balmaceda's policy and later served as minister to France. — FV, 766‑768.

Juan Luis Sanfuentes Andonaegui (1858‑ ), of a distinguished Santiago family, was educated in the University of Chile and received his license as advocate in 1879. After brief service in the navy during the war with Peru and Bolivia, he engaged in business and became deputy in 1888. A friend of Balmaceda, after the death of that leader he carried on fortunate speculations in the Santiago stock exchange, reëntered politics in 1900, became senator in 1903, and minister of the treasury during the Riesco administration. He was also counselor of the Caja de crédito hipotecario (Mortgage Loan Bank) and the Savings Bank. An expert in financial affairs, he was also a skillful political manager, making and unmaking ministers almost at will. As president he was to take many a dose of his own medicine. Yet he succeeded in reducing materially the public debt, and in pushing through a program of useful public works. In the election of his successor, he maintained a strict neutrality. Never popular, despite his unaffected manners and skill in controlling others, he passed out of office with fewer friends than when he entered. — FV, 762‑765; Cabero, Chile y los chilenos, p244.

Salvador Sanfuentes Torres (1817‑1860) was the son of a Santiago merchant of Spanish connection. Educated at the National Institute and under the tutelage of Andrés Bello (see p453), he received his law degree in 1842. From his youth he studied languages and literature and early became favorably known for his translations from Latin, p519English and French. A painter of some note, he published texts on geography and drawing and wrote a critical analysis of Ercilla's Araucana. As an associate of Lastarria he published in El seminario de Santiago in 1842 a versified legend, El campanario, which marked a new departure in Chilean literature. As secretary of the university (1842‑1852), he edited its memorials, twice served as minister of public instruction, during which time he strove to improve the system of public schools, and in 1856 was elected dean of the faculty of philosophy and humanities in the university. In addition he held various diplomatic and judicial offices, including membership in the supreme court of justice, and collaborated on various scientific and literary reviews. His poetry and prose have merited high praise. — ELIII, 1325; FV, 765‑766; M. L. Amunátegui, Biografía de D. Salvador Sanfuentes (Santiago, 1892).

Andrés Santa Cruz (1792‑1865), member of an illustrious Spanish family of Villavicencio, and reputed descendant of the Incas, was born in La Paz. After serving in the royalist ranks until 1820, he joined the revolutionists under San Martín, took part in the battle of Pichincha under Sucre, and in 1823 was made a general of division in Peru. As chief of the general staff of Bolívar, he participated in the battles of Junín and Ayacucho. Entrusted with a diplomatic mission to Chile, he was quickly recalled to military service in Peru and for a time served as president ad interim (1826). In 1829 he succeeded Sucre as president of Bolivia and devoted himself with energy and enthusiasm to the task of rehabilitating his native country, and later of incorporating it with Peru in a powerful confederation. Unfortunately his intrigues had stirred up powerful enemies as well as friends and, although he initiated important measures to improve the industries, the educational system, and the public finance of Bolivia, his opponents in Peru, aided by Chile, defeated him and forced him into exile. After an attempt to recover power in 1843, he spent his remaining days in a kind of diplomatic exile in Europe. In 1861 he negotiated the concordat between Bolivia and the papacy and in 1863, a commercial treaty with France, in which country he died. Documents relating to his career, collected by his son, were published at La Paz in 1925 under the title, El General Santa Cruz, gran mariscal de Zepita y del gran Perú. — EXLIV, 180. For an unfavorable account of Santa Cruz, see Sotomayor Valdés, Historia de Chile, Vol. II, chaps. xix, xxiii, passim.

Domingo Santa María González (1825‑1889) was born in Santiago, in a family of distinguished Spanish and colonial lineage. Educated in the National Institute and later in the University of Chile, he first taught in the former, at the same time pursuing his legal studies and p520serving as subordinate in the ministry of justice and public instruction. He received his degree as attorney at law in 1847, presenting as his thesis, Reforma de la ley electoral de 1833 (Reform of the Electoral Law of 1833). He supported the reëlection of General Bulnes with tongue and pen and as a reward was appointed, although under legal age, intendant of Colchagua. Success crowned the efforts of the precocious administrator, who thus early displayed his ability to arouse and overcome opposition and to gain popularity, but not to keep it. A liberal by nature, he sought to maintain orderly progress but was inclined to change his course; his moderation, however, did not save him from proscription under Montt. During this decade, he served on the university faculty of philosophy and humanities, wrote his memoirs of O'Higgins and Infante (see p230), gained reputation as an orator, and while in exile visited Europe and pleaded the cause of a fellow countryman in the English courts. Recalled to Chile during the administration of Pérez, he became minister of hacienda and later minister of the court of appeals. In 1865 he was entrusted with a diplomatic mission to Europe during the war with Spain, and also helped organize the plan of defense agreed upon with Peru. Pérez appointed him to the supreme court. During the War of the Pacific he held three important cabinet posts, including that of war and marine. In the last capacity he effected important changes in the commanding posts and paved the way for his own accession to the presidency. As chief magistrate he helped to liquidate the war and to push to a conclusion certain "theological" questions (see p339), as well as to stir up numerous other political controversies. Thus his administration was the most stormy since that of Montt. After his retirement he edited the Código de enjuiciamiento civil (Code of Civil Procedure). As a politician he was energetic, approachable, adept in management, and one who could wait patiently his turn for preferment. — FV, 780‑782.

Hernando de Santillán (1519‑1574) was a member of the audiencia of Lima in 1548 and served Hurtado de Mendoza as justicia mayor and deputy in 1557. Four years later he resumed his duties as oidor in Lima. In 1564 he was deputized to establish the audiencia at Quito where he ruled tyrannically and was subjected to a heavy fine, subsequently reduced at court. In 1571 he was designated bishop of Charcas (Upper Peru) but died at Lima before he could take possession of his see. — Medina, Dic. biog., p812. The ordinance mentioned in the text does not exist in its original form but in summaries given by the chronicler Diego de Rosales and Suárez de Figueroa. — BII, 223, n. 19; L. B. Simpson, The Encomienda in New Spain. It established the principle of laboring in succession, the quota from a tribe being one sixth for work in the p521mines and one fifth for work in the fields. The master must furnish the laborers with meat three times a week and might require limited service only from women and minors. He must furnish medical care and religious instruction for the laborers and their families. The system failed because the masters opposed it and because the Indians were naturally lazy. — BII, 223‑225.

Domingo Faustino Sarmiento (1811‑1888) was born at San Juan de la Frontera, Argentina, but was taken to Chile by his parents in the wake of San Martín. His earlier life alternated between Argentina and Chile, where for a time he engaged in trade and mining. His business experience, supplemented by his early training, his classroom activities, and his newspaper work gave him a reputation for vast learning — a reputation that was increased by enforced exile and wide travel. He spent two periods of exile in Chile, where he was instrumental in founding and directing the first normal school for men and in writing for El mercurio. His interest in politics brought him into difficulty even in his adopted country. He returned to Argentina in 1852 to take up arms against Rosas and later to assist in developing the political and educational systems of his native country, serving as senator, minister of state, and minister plenipotentiary in Paris and Washington. Horace Mann was an intimate friend who greatly influenced Sarmiento's educational policy and Mrs. Mann translated his chief novel, Facundo. In 1868 Sarmiento became president of Argentina, and during his administration his chief work was still in the educational field. He died in Asunción, Paraguay, where he had gone to regain his health. — ELIV, 605‑607; Coester, op. cit., pp125‑135, 198‑199.

Lorenzo Sazie (1807‑1865) was born at Monpezat, France. After completing his medical studies and hospital training at Paris, where he acquired a brilliant reputation as a surgeon, he was invited in 1833 to become professor of medicine in Chile. Here he became famous not only for his skill in diagnosis and in surgery, but for his preference to minister to the poorer classes. He was more renowned as a teacher than as a medical writer. His son, Carlos Sazie Heredia, was a noted specialist in nervous diseases and another son, an electrical engineer, did much to advance radio telephony in Chile. — FV, 789‑790.

Alexander Selkirk (1672‑1721), the prototype of Robinson Crusoe, was rescued on January 31, 1709, from Juan Fernández Island. In 1703 he had joined Dampier's expedition to the South Seas as sailing captain under Thomas Stradling. A quarrel between them resulted in Selkirk's remaining on Juan Fernández, from which he was rescued by an English vessel under command of Dampier. After returning to England and relating his experiences, Captain Woodes Rogers wrote p522Cruising Voyage round the World (London, 1712), the second edition of which inspired Daniel Defoe to write Robinson Crusoe. The fullest account of his adventures, based on contemporary narratives, was written by John Howell, The Life and Adventures of Alexander Selkirk (Edinburgh, 1829).

Ignacio Serrano Montaner (d. 1879) was a native of Melipilla. In 1865 he entered the Naval School, where he proved an alert and distinguished pupil. Within a few years after completing his course, he became a lieutenant and served as instructor on the Esmeralda. In 1879 he was serving on another vessel but was transferred to the Esmeralda in time for his glorious sacrifice. Even when mortally wounded he is credited with an attempt in his last moments to set fire to the Huáscar. His remains rest under the same monument as those of Prat. — FV, 812‑813.

Bartholomew Sharpeº had started on his expedition in 1679 and, upon his return to England in 1682, he was tried for piracy in connection with the capture of a Spanish vessel, the Rosario. He was acquitted on the ground that the Spaniards had fired first and he had therefore acted in self defense. The best account of his expeditions was written by his companion, Basil Ringrose, in his Dangerous Voyage and Bold Attempts of Capt. Bartholomew Sharpe, 1684, which is reprinted in John Esquemeling, The Buccaneers of America (London, 1893), Pt. IV, pp275‑502. A summarized account of the operations of these pirates in the West Indies is given by Clarence H. Haring in The Buccaneers in the West Indies in the 17th Century (London, 1910). Haring also lists the different editions of Esquemeling.

Waldo Silva Algüe (1820‑1892) was born in Santiago. He studied in the National Institute and in the university, where he obtained his law degree in 1843. From 1856 to 1867 he served as minister of public instruction and during his ministry formed the library of the institute, organized instruction in sculpture and drawing, replaced the course in Spanish civil law with one in the civil code of Chile, and established various liceos and popular libraries. After 1860 he was a member of the court of appeals in Concepción. In 1891 as president of the senate he helped head the revolt against Balmaceda (see p346). — FV, 817‑818.

Jorge Gustavo Silva Endeiza (1881‑ ) was trained in the lyceums of La Serena and Valparaiso and completed his law studies in 1921. He became advocate in 1929. From his earliest years he had been engaged in newspaper work and later was connected with public administration, principally connected with labor issues. While residing and working in Santiago, he contributed to the press of Valparaiso and p523Concepción. His articles were generally of a sociological character. By inheritance and training he has been closely allied with the literary interests of the country. — FV, 827.

José Antonio Soffia Agromedo (1843‑1886) was born in Santiago and educated at the National Institute. One of the most brilliant pupils of Andrés Bello, he published his first poems in 1863 and thereafter continued to produce verse that gained recognition both in Chile and in Colombia, where he served as minister for six years, contributing widely to the press of that country, as well as his own, and influencing profoundly the literary expression of both countries. Like other contemporary South American poets he published many translations from Victor Hugo. His swift, critical, yet kindly genius captivated any social circle with which he was connected. His early promise gained for him six years in the directorship of the National Library. Later he served in congress, and as school inspector, as oficial mayor in the ministry of the interior, as intendant of Aconcagua, and as minister to Colombia, where diplomatically and socially he made a favorable impression. He died suddenly just as he was designated minister to Argentina. — FV, 848‑849.

Emilio Sotomayor Baeza (1823‑1894) was born in Melipilla, educated in the Military School, and entered the artillery in 1845. He supported the government in the uprisings against Manuel Montt, wrote widely on military topics, and before the War of the Pacific was sent to Europe to obtain better equipment for the army. In that conflict he contributed to Chilean success, particularly in the battle of Dolores (November 19, 1879) and in the fighting around Lima. He was political chief of that city while the Chilean army occupied it. — FV, 856‑857.

Ramón Sotomayor Valdés (1830‑1903) was born in Santiago and educated in the National Institute. In 1853 he began contributing articles to El ferrocarril and other newspapers. In 1863 he became minister to Mexico and, on his return in 1866, joined the faculty of philosophy and humanities of the University of Chile. From 1867 to 1872 he filled with success the post of minister to Bolivia, of which country he later published an interesting historical study. In 1875 he published the first volume of what was to be a detailed history of Chile beginning with the year 1831 but completed two volumes only, covering the years up to 1837. His service as oficial mayor in the ministry of the treasury showed high financial ability. He made notable contributions to La revista del Pacífico, La revista chilena, and other literary reviews. — FV, 860.


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