During the sesquicentennial of their nationhood Argentines have appropriately commemorated the men and events of the 1810 revolution. Subordinated during the harsh Perón years to synthetic emphasis upon the Rosas-Uriburu cult, humanitarian progenitors of Argentine culture and progress are regaining some of their lost luster. Few champions of the nation’s destiny deserve this revival more than Mariano Moreno, youthful inspirer of the May revolution and principal sower of the seeds of Argentine liberties.

In this highly-adulatory, though readable, biography, C. Galván Moreno undertakes to recount his protagonist’s heroic career and to restore him to his rightful place in the Argentine pantheon. Believing that any biography of Mariano Moreno must savor of the panegyrical, he supplies this ingredient in generous proportions.

The author sees his subject as the inspiration, the guide, and the chief executor of the May junta. He lauds his nobleness, patriotism, and purity of spirit. He seeks to recreate his soul, his personality, his tremendous energy, and his incontestable will. He fits him into the “noble triumvirate” of Argentina’s great civilian patriots: Moreno, who laid the bases for Argentina’s culture and progress; Rivadavia, who struggled for their perpetuation; and Sarmiento, who realized them.

Neither in analyzing the slow evolution of Moreno’s insurgency, in describing his sudden intrusion into the actions of the revolutionary junta, nor in underscoring his meteoric career as a founder of Argentine institutions does Galván Moreno proceed as innovator or revisionist. Rather, utilizing the researches of Ricardo Levene and others, he seeks to portray “a real and complete image” of a much-neglected patriot.

As the biographer of Rivadavia, Monteagudo, San Martín, O’Higgins, and Martí, Galván Moreno is well prepared, both in mind and spirit, for the eulogistic approach. For modern Argentines, his life of Moreno may serve as a useful antidote to post-Perón disillusionment; for American students, the scholarly works of Levene remain more useful.