At last we have a comprehensive, scholarly biography of Andrés Bello that does justice to the great nineteenth-century polymath of South America. The author has gathered source materials from 23 archives and special collections located in 6 nations. He also has consulted most of the relevant specialized secondary materials. The result is a fascinating account that traces Bello’s life chronologically, starting with his youth as a student and novice colonial bureaucrat in Venezuela, then proceeding to his years as a young diplomat and scholar in London, and finally to Chile, where the mature Bello applied himself to the task of nation-building in a variety of ways.

The depiction of Bello’s Venezuelan youth shows clearly the germinal traits of the man that would emerge later in England and Chile. After a brilliant career at the University of Caracas, the young Bello wrote poetry, edited a newspaper, and began study of the...

You do not currently have access to this content.