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José Inácio de Abreu e Lima (Recife, Brazil, 6 April 1794 – Pernambuco, Brazil, 8 March 1869).
Also known as José Ignacio Abreu E Lima or José Ignacio Abreu y Lima, he was a Brazilian military leader, politician, writer, journalist and intellectual, who participated in the War of Independence of Greater Colombia, under the orders of Liberator Simón Bolivar, whom he served and accompanied until his last moment of life, becoming a General of the Liberation Army.
His last years of life were spent in his native Brazil, where he devoted himself to the writing of important political works, where he argued his thesis, based on French utopian socialism, as a way of achieving the Fatherland projected by Simón Bolívar in his years of struggle.
Beginnings in the Liberating Army
José Ignacio Abreu E Lima was born on April 6, 1794, in the city of Recife, Brazil, the son of José Inácio Ribeiro de Abreu Lima, a former Catholic priest, who left the habits of marriage, and who subsequently became an officer, investing all fortune in seeking independence from Brazil.
However, in 1817, after the execution of his father, accused of participating in the Pernambucan Revolution, he was forced to depart with his brother to the United States. Interested in the independence process, led by General Simón Bolívar, he decides to move to Venezuela.
After his arrival in the port of La Guaira, he offered his services to the liberating cause, being accepted in 1819, with the rank of Captain. That same year, as part of the Liberation Army, he accompanied General Simón Bolívar in the Apure Campaign, the march through the Páramo de Pisba, as well as in the battles of the Vargas Swamp, which took place on July 25, 1819, as well as the Battle of Boyacá , on August 7, 1819.
He would also participate in other decisive battles of the War of Independence, such as the Battle of Carabobo, which took place on June 24, 1821, with which Venezuela’s freedom was sealed, as well as the naval battle of Lake Maracaibo, in 1823.
He was also editor of the newspaper Correo del Orinoco, founded by the Liberator Simón Bolívar.
His closeness to the Liberator was sometimes misinterpreted, as well as the object of certain misgivings. Among many of the incidents, the one that occurred in 1825, between this military and the Venezuelan prosperous Antonio Leocadio Guzmán, who published some ironic notes against Abreu E Lima, in his newspaper Argos, against which this Brazilian general reacted violently, being arrested for a time at the Castillo de San Carlos, located in the state of Zulia, Venezuela.
Once the Independence of the Spanish Crown was won, Abreu E Lima remained close to General Bolívar, while getting involved in the politics of Greater Colombia, working hard to spread and build Bolivarian thought in recent liberated territories.
In this sense he fought with General Antonio José de Sucre, at the Battle of The Portete de Tarqui, which occurred on November 27, 1829. He also founded the Bolivarian newspaper Babel’s Tower, while trying to mediate between the political clashes between José Antonio Páez and Francisco de Paula Santander, in order to seek the union of Gran Colombia.
After his failure, he decided to head to Ecuador, in the company of Antonio José de Sucre, in order to join the entourage of the Liberator Simón Bolívar.
Return to Brazil
After the dissolution of Gran Colombia, Abreu E Lima, decided to accompany Bolivar on his final trip to the city of Santa Marta, staying by his side until the death of this independence hero, which occurred on December 17, 1830.
Subsequently, the Santanderist government of Joaquín Mosquera was unaware of his rank of General, expelling him from the territory of New Granada on 9 August 1831. José Ignacio Abreu y Lima immediately moved to the United States and then to Europe, eventually returning to Brazil, where he settled in Rio de Janeiro.
Unlike his actions with Bolivar’s troops, in the interests of the establishment of a Republic, in Brazil Abreu E Lima supported the monarchy. In his land he founded the newspaper La Barca Sao Pedro, a grandstand from which he called for the return of Peter I.
After the age of majority of Peter II of Brazil in 1840, this political leader spoke in favor of the constitutional monarchy.
In 1844, after more than twenty-five years, he returned to Pernambuco, where he was nominated as an MP, an election he lost to the Conservatives. Following the 1848 Praieira Revuelta, the General of the Masses – as he was known in Brazil for his popularity – was accused of rebellion and sentenced to life in prison. However, Abreu E Lima obtained the Emperor’s acquittal in 1850.
From that moment on, he devoted himself to writing his ideas about French utopian socialism, based on the thinking of Charles Fourier. Among his most outstanding books are Historical, A Cartilha do Povo (1849); O Socialism (1855), as well as his Compendium of Universal History.
In the same way he actively collaborated in the Pernambuco Journal and the Diário Novo, among other Pernambucan newspapers. Towards his later years, he devoted himself to seeking medical care for the poor, for which he opened in 1853 an office that attended for free to those in need. He died in the city of Pernambuco, Brazil, on March 8, 1869.
His practice known as Mason, as well as his defense towards freedom of worship caused the Catholic Church to be denied the holy burial in the Holy Amaro Cemetery in Recife. His body was cremated in the Cemetery of the English.
Image source: wikipedia.org
August 14, 2019