The sixty years between 1830, when Diego Portales and his associates imposed their political system on the newly independent nation, and 1891, when the system suffered breakdown in civil war, have long been recognized as holding a special place in the history of Chile. Thanks in great part to the writings of Francisco Encina, the term “Portalian” is often popularly used to describe this period, and while in some ways it is no more than an adjective of convenience, its use can perhaps be justified on broad grounds. For there is indeed a sense in which the ruthless tenacity of Diego Portales in establishing and upholding the Conservative settlement of 1830 was a vital influence on the course of Chilean history right up till 1891. In retrospect at least, this whole period has been seen as something approaching a minor golden age, an age when Chilean endeavors (whether political, economic or military) were crowned with substantial success. True or false, this particular view has won wide acceptance in Chile itself, and may well have contributed something to that “mendacious mythology of national over-valuation” which a shrewd essayist in 1970 detected as an important aspect of the Chilean mentality.1 Did the Chile of 1830–1891 really deserve its reputation? It can hardly be denied that foreign opinions of Chile in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries were highly respectful; “of all the Latin American states [it is] the one which best answers to European or North American notions of a free constitutional commonwealth,” wrote Lord Bryce,2 and his verdict was very common. The late Kalman Silvert refers, in one of his essays, to “the legend of the British traveler who, upon finally arriving in Valparaíso after traversing Latin America, breathed, ‘At last, a Nation!’ ”3 There were many such travelers, British and others.

Chileans themselves, in Portalian times, were strongly inclined to regard theirs as the leading republic of South America, and confident anticipations of the future abounded. “Our country,” wrote a pamphleteer of 1870, “is destined by Providence to fulfil a magnificent mission in the South American continent: the regeneration of its races, nobly stimulating them by the example of our work and displaying to them the wealth and riches thus won.”4 Such a view would not have seemed excessive to educated Chileans of the later part of the Portalian period; indeed, as early as 1861 a newspaper denounced the constant reiteration of the theme of Chile as the república modelo as “a mania, . . . a pretty quixotic pretension.”5 Quixotic it may have been; it was certainly a pretension. But contemporary opinion is one thing; historical assessment is very definitely another. As I shall try to indicate in this survey, the views of historians on the Portalian era have altered significantly with the passage of time. The precise ways in which these views have developed offer, perhaps, interesting clues to the course Chilean history has taken in the last hundred years or so.

An understanding of the historiography is better appreciated with some knowledge of the major developments of the period. These can be summarized very briefly. After the 1829–1830 civil war, Conservatives led with unmistakable vigor by Diego Portales displaced the Liberals in government and imposed a rather authoritarian political system with strong presidential power (partly enshrined in the Constitution of 1833) as its main feature. The system was tested early in a war against the short-lived Peru-Bolivian Confederation (1836–1839), which Chile won. The third Conservative president, Manuel Montt (1851–1861), was twice unsuccessfully challenged by force of arms, in the 1851 and 1859 civil wars. In 1857–1858 the bulk of the Conservative party deserted him (partly on the issue of relations between church and state) and joined forces with the opposition in the so-called Liberal–Conservative Fusion. Montt’s remaining supporters formed the National party. With opinion running against him, Montt was obliged in 1861 to choose the easygoing José Joaquín Pérez, acceptable to all parties, as his successor. Pérez soon called the Fusion into government. Liberals unhappy with the compromise embodied in the Fusion broke away at this point and formed the Radical party.

The Fusion governed until 1873, the most dramatic event of its ascendancy being a brief war with Spain (1865–1866). During the Errázuriz Zañartu presidency (1871–1876), the Conservatives went into opposition. A new governing combination, the Liberal Alliance, was formed in 1875 and the subsequent evolution of politics showed a predictably liberal trend; major constitutional reforms in 1873–1874, slightly weakening the executive, were complemented a decade later by laws of a secularizing character, religious issues now coming well to the fore. This process was interrupted by the War of the Pacific (1879–1883) when Chile, in a sequence of epic campaigns, inflicted heavy defeat on Peru and Bolivia and conquered the nitrate-rich northern deserts. These victories, combined with the country’s long (and in Spanish America, unique) record of stability, confirmed many Chileans in the confident opinions already mentioned.

During the dynamic presidency of José Manuel Balmaceda (1886–1891), at a time when great wealth from nitrates was flowing into Chilean (and foreign) coffers, politicians of all the main parties (Liberal, Conservative, Radical and National) joined together in a final attack on presidentialism and in pursuit of congressional or “parliamentary” supremacy. This led with startling rapidity to the 1891 civil war, the defeat of Balmaceda, and what has credibly been called “the absolute and final triumph of liberalism.”6 The historiography of this last, tragic episode of Portalian Chile has been ably analyzed by the English scholar Harold Blakemore7 and I shall leave it largely out of account here, although some references to Balmaceda and the turning point of 1891 are unavoidable.

Traditional Interpretations

The first Chilean writers to try to come to terms with the Portalian era were those to whom it was contemporary history, and their first works began appearing in the 1860s. Andrés Bello (1781–1865), the respected mentor of so much of Chilean intellectual life, had schooled these men in a strong preference for strict and measured narrative as opposed to more “philosophical” approaches,8 and the result, between 1850 and the turn of the century, was a flowering of superb scholarship. This scholarship, however, was directed less to contemporary events than to the colonial and independence periods.9 Moreover, many of the best historians of the time including the “great triumvirate” of Diego Barros Arana (1830–1907), Miguel Luis Amunátegui (1828-1888) and Benjamín Vicuña Mackenna (1831–1886) were themselves prominent actors in the political dramas of Portalian Chile, and their views on the subject, despite Bello’s stern training, were inevitably colored by partisanship, usually of a liberal tone. An early case in point, indeed the first work to describe any segment of the period in detail, was the deeply polemical Cuadro histórico de la administración Montt (Valparaíso, 1861), an exercise in intelligent vilification whose anonymous publication on the very last day of Montt’s hated presidency, was itself a political action.10 It was the first shot in a tremendous liberal broadside.

The main aim of the Liberal program in politics was the reform of the Constitution of 1833 and, especially, the weakening of the executive. Until the Constitution was actually reformed, many liberals felt a certain nostalgia for its ill-fated predecessor of 1828, which Conservative vindictiveness and violence, they thought, had never allowed a fair chance. This was the underlying theme, in 1861, of a long essay by Federico Errázuriz Zañartu (1825–1877), a theme deliberately selected to cast light on “the legality, justice and suitability of our fundamental institutions”11 which, he had no trouble in concluding, were seriously defective. Diego Portales, the organizing genius of the Conservative reaction of 1829, tended to be depicted in a highly unfavorable light by liberals, as was shown in Errázuriz’ essay12 and, also in 1861, in a jaundiced profile by the indefatigable publicist José Victorino Lastarria (1817-1888).13 But Portales’ unquestionably remarkable qualities posed problems for more imaginative liberals, and one of the greatest of them, Benjamín Vicuña Mackenna, broke ranks as early as 1863 with a large, fully rounded, fairminded biography, still, perhaps, unsurpassed as a portrait of the great Minister.14

Despite such temporary defections, liberals were united in viewing the Portalian system as heavy-handed and despotic. The considerable difficulties of all opposition parties during the period makes this assessment understandable. The various episodes of active liberal resistance, given their intrinsic drama, were peculiarly fitting subjects for historical treatment. Here, too, Vicuña Mackenna led the way. Having himself been a very active rebel in 1851, he now chronicled the civil war in five vivid volumes.15 His framework is that of a noble liberal epic in which minor skirmishes tend to become great battles; but the magic and power of the book is undeniable. The Radical historian Pedro Pablo Figueroa, though lacking Vicuña Mackenna’s striking literary flair, adopted a similar approach some years later in narrating the rebellions of 1859.16 Works such as these, though generally faithful to the tradition of accurate narrative, were essentially designed to commemorate “the glorious and dramatic efforts of the defenders of the people.”17 They played a major role in building up the liberal interpretation of the period.

The first genuine attempt at a large-scale history of any segment of the Portalian period was an unfinished book by Isidoro Errázuriz, a long narrative of the years from 1823 to 1850 later described as “the first . . . philosophical synthesis of our independent historical evolution.”18 It was far from that, but it nonetheless did contain a more or less complete outline of the liberal view.19 The Conservatives, by mounting what was essentially a “colonial reaction” against the revolution for independence, had propelled Chile “from the times of Saturn into an age of iron.”20 Portales’ talents, terribly misused, had given the nation material prosperity—this, by the 1870s, was not denied by liberals—but they had also produced, more seriously, “forty years or more . . . of political and parliamentary anemia.”21 Errázuriz’ picture of his period is remorselessly political. It is the interplay of men, parties, ideas, ceaselessly producing dramatic clashes of principle between those who, like the hated Montt, wished to prolong the authoritarian legacy, and those steadily germinating liberal forces which represented the cause of freedom, progress and the future. By the time Errázuriz’ book appeared (1877), the future presumably seemed much closer. It is a tragedy that he abandoned his narrative at 1850, for it was to be many years before historians took up the task of describing the remaining decades of the Portalian period.22 Chile’s greatest generation of historians never put together a complete narrative of its own recent past.

There was, naturally, a Conservative side to the debate, though it was less well represented. Its most formidable champion, Ramón Sotomayor Valdés (1830–1903), in a history of the Prieto government (1831–1841) written in the mid-1870s, chose to lay stress on the “colonial reaction” and the authoritarian principle as precisely the most realistic and positive aspects of Portales’ work. The fathers of 1833, he thought, had followed “inductions based on knowledge of the national character,” and the later success of the republic bore them out, for “history ... is the best commentary on institutions.”23 In this view, the Portalian state was vigorous, pragmatic, creative; it rightly ignored irrelevantly utopian liberal fantasies. Conservative reverence for Portales was very pronounced, as can be seen not only in Sotomayor Valdés’ works,24 but also in Carlos Walker Martínez’ almost hagiological biography of 1879, which exalted the Minister as the man who, “in only sixteen months,” had refashioned Chile and thus rescued her from “the common shipwreck” of nineteenth-century Spanish America.25 Conservatives were every bit as capable as liberals of writing polemical history when occasion demanded, especially when they found themselves in the opposition; easily the best example of this is Walker Martínez’ savage account of the liberal government of Domingo Santa María (1881–1886).26 But in general, the big battalions of Chilean historiography were ranged on the other side.

With the advance of liberalism, with the growing national wealth, with the victories of the War of the Pacific, the early, authoritarian phase of the Portalian regime became a distant memory, and it proved possible for liberal and conservative interpretations to show signs of an ultimate convergence. After all, the “sickly and feeble plant of 1833,” suitably pruned, had “grown into a gigantic fifty-year-old tree.”27 Surely all the parties had played their part in building up the common heritage of order, freedom and victory. Something of this attitude can, perhaps, be glimpsed in the great Barros Arana’s only major incursion into the Portalian era, his magnificent swan-song Un decenio de la historia de Chile, 1841–1851, (2 vols., 1905–1906). This serene survey is almost Olympian in its benign detachment.28 Similarly, in the sections covering the 1830-1891 period, the widely read textbook by Luis Galdames, first published in 1906, also rose above the old party battles. It would not be too grotesque a caricature of Galdames’ approach to say that in his view everything that had happened was more or less appropriate at the time it happened. This was brought out in his reflections on the political turning point of 1861, when the Conservative regime, having undeniably “permitted slow but effective progress in all aspects of national activity,” found that its “mould was too narrow,” and therefore “yielded place to an ideal of government more in harmony with social development.”29 With Galdames, some new interpretative themes clearly came into play, tying political history more explicitly (though rather vaguely) to social changes than had been done previously; but the overall framework was in essence that of progress, a common national progress which passed through natural (or at least appropriate) phases. The notion of the Chilean political system somehow adapting automatically to take account of new currents of life and thought was an attractive one—however poorly it may have squared with the reality of 1891 and the Parliamentary era which followed—and gained wide acceptance in Chile and abroad.30

Chilean pride in the persistence of a stable constitutional tradition which many believed to have been perfected by the 1891 civil war31 was strengthened by the euphoria induced by victory in the War of the Pacific—the first contemporary event since the commotions of the 1850s to provoke a large amount of historical writing.32 A cursory survey of this writing does not reveal any especially notorious tendency toward offensive chauvinism; Bello’s schooling retained its influence; but many authors definitely thought Chile’s political traditions to have been an important cause of victory. Gonzalo Bulnes, whose fine narrative of the war appeared in 1911-1919, brought this moral to the fore in recounting an incident soon after the Chilean occupation of Lima in January 1881:

What defeated Peru was the superiority of a race and of a history; order against disorder; a country without caudillos against a country afflicted by that terrible evil . . . The French admiral Du Petit Thouars could not understand the result . . . [Patricio] Lynch offered to explain it to him. He approached two wounded Peruvians . . . and asked each of them: “And why did you take part in these battles?” One replied: “For Don Nicolás”; the other “For Don Miguel.” Don Nicolás was Piérola, Don Miguel was Colonel Iglesias. He next asked the same question of two wounded members of the Chilean army, and both replied, in tones of surprise: “For the homeland, mi general! That was what had triumphed: the superiority of a healthy and moral history over one which had been convulsed by personal interests. I will not say that it was the only cause of the defeat, but it certainly played a part.33

We are close here, I think, to something that might almost be termed a Chilean version of the Whig interpretation of history. For those who espoused it, their country’s history was emphatically the history of progress, and progress crowned by military glory. The popular force of this interpretation, especially its military aspect, is far from spent; it inspired a best-selling multi-volume novel of the 1950s,34 and is clearly discernible in such literary efforts as the “historical miniatures” of Enrique Bunster.35

The liberal and conservative views of the 1830–1891 period, and their tentative coalescence in a kind of Whig interpretation,36 lost some of their influence by about 1920 as far as serious historical writing went. But even so, distinguished scholars have continued, even in very recent times, to plough the traditional furrows with sucess. There have been neo-liberals and neo-conservatives. One example must suffice. Ricardo Donoso’s well-known book Las ideas políticas en Chile (1946), a large part of which is devoted to the period under consideration, takes as its theme “the struggle for the establishment of democracy in Chile,” and leaves the reader in no doubt that it was “the liberai parties” which did most to create “an atmophere of liberty and tolerance in our political habits.”37 The moving final sentences of the book recall the death of the Radical “patriarch” Manuel Antonio Matta on his way home from the Senate, where he had been defending individual rights, an event Donoso sees as possessing a certain “dramatic symbolism.”38 Whatever the limitations of its interpretative framework, the kind of fundamental decency represented in the work of a great historian like Donoso should not be undervalued. A view from the mid-1970s gives it a certain appeal, to put it mildly.

The Revisionists

During the “Parliamentary” period (1891-1920) and the difficult 1920s, changes occurred in Chilean life which were sufficiently disquieting in themselves to provoke a “literature of national decline,”39 calling into question many of the more confident assumptions then starting to crystalize in the form of a Whiggish view of the past. The loud political commotions of the time, the evident emergence of new sections of society into the limelight, and the new demagogy and militarism eventually left their mark even on historians, compelling them to take greater account of the wider social framework within which their country’s history had taken place. Luis Galdames’ text of 1906 had included a good deal of rather imprecise social coloring, and works by the neo-liberal historian Domingo Amunátegui Solar also showed this tendency rather later on.40

The first writer to suggest a serious revision of older interpretations, with their stress on parties and principles and their complacent view of Chilean superiority and progress, was Alberto Edwards, one of the most agile minds of his day.41 His shortish synthesis of Chilean history from independence to General Carlos Ibáñez appeared in La fronda aristocrática (1928), a highly influential book. Edwards saw as the key to Portalian Chile the nature of the aristocracy, and the fact that it had remained “quiet and obedient” for some twenty years while the Portalian “miracle”—the intuitive creation of a legitimate, impersonal power which was independent, above class, genuinely national— took effect. Subsequent history was simply the process whereby the aristocracy, true to its inner nature, became steadily less quiet and obedient in its quest for control of power. Edwards called this story “an aristocratic fronde, almost always hostile to . . . governments and at times in open revolt against them. This fronde . . . pushed the Montt presidency to the verge of ruin, and from then until 1891 . . . gradually demolished all that remained of the constructive achievement of 1833.”42

Influenced by Spengler, Edwards termed Portalian Chile an estado en forma. Its slow dissolution was inevitable, for any genuine aristocracy was frondeuse. Conflicts of party and principle were only interesting as reflections of this: liberalism and conservatism (after 1857) were in essence the same thing. In 1891 the fronde triumphed; the aristocracy became an oligarchy; but even “had Balmaceda won, he could not have held up the course of history any more than Manuel Montt was able to hold it up after Cerro Grande.”43 There is little of the Whig view here. It is the story of a decline, and there is a some-what fatalistic tone to Edwards’ writing. Chile has had her day, and unless a second Portales arises,44 is unlikely to have another.

Edwards, like all previous writers, was still mainly interested in political history, but the key to his explanation lay beyond politics proper, in the psychology of a particular social group, the frondeuse aristocracy. Moreover, by explicitly assigning the leading role in his account to this artistocracy, by insisting that until his own times no body else in the social spectrum counted,45 and, not least, by offering some shrewd definitions of the aristocracy itself,46 he contributed something to an eventual “social” interpretation of Chilean history. The novelty and importance of this approach should be readily apparent.

Edwards’ main themes exerted a powerful influence (not always acknowledged) on the most voluminous and controversial of modern Chilean historians, Francisco Antonio Encina,47 whose enormous Historia de Chile desde la prehistoria hasta 1891 appeared between 1940 and 1952.48 Just over ten of its twenty volumes are devoted to the 1830-1891 period, making this easily the most detailed description of Portalian Chile. Encina’s general view of the “sociological miracle of 1830-1891,” about which he is suitably reverential, is roughly the same as Edwards’, with minor variations. The fronde is prominent again; the “strong” governments are glowingly praised; Portales and Montt come perilously close to deification. Encina adds a few flourishes of his own and his language is more portentous than Edwards’. His distaste for liberalism brings him, at times, uncomfortably close to illtempered caricature. In part, too, Encina’s scheme appeals to racialist ideas which one critic has seen as “extreme and dogmatic” in his work.49 Thus in the final analysis the fronde is an ethnic force, and racial causes can be ascribed to specific events; Montt’s troubles with the opposition result from the fact that his “firmly Catalan mental structure placed a partition-wall between himself and the Basque-Castilian aristocracy.”50 Unlike Edwards, however, Encina includes a modicum of economic information in his account and makes several interesting suggestions as to how this fitted into the Portalian pattern. Flawed, derivative, often irritating as it is, Encina’s huge history—a strange mixture of pseudo-science and cunning insight—does have the great merit of providing a detailed narrative of the entire 1830-1891 period; this had never been done before and it has not been done since.

Social and Economic Approaches

In 1949 Atenea, the distinguished journal of the University of Concepción, devoted a special issue to Chilean historiography. The final contribution was an intelligent and persuasive outburst from a youngish scholar, Julio César Jobet, who roundly asserted that the real history of Chile had yet to be written. “Up till now,” he wrote, “it has been nothing more than the record of the great magnates of the land and the chronicle of the affluent class ... as if nothing else had existed.” Jobet contrasted the image of “greatness and superiority” found in the history books with the country’s “tragic and sorrowful . . . reality of backwardness and poverty.”51 The diatribe, as it so often is in such cases, was necessarily overdone. As Jobet himself admitted, one or two writers, even before 1949, had touched interestingly on social themes. The brilliant lawyer, Carlos Vicuña, for example, had written some convincing pages on nineteenth-century society, drawing attention to “the new fortunes” made in mining after 1850.52 Carlos Keller, too, had sketched in a significant dividing-line in the middle of the Portalian period between the predominance of a traditional “colonial” aristocracy and the rise of mining millionaires accompanied by the arrival of “Anglo-Saxon capitalism.”53 Amunátegui Solar, however superficially, had devoted half of his Historia social de Chile (1932) to “the popular classes, the people of no name.”51 The erudite Guillermo Feliú Cruz, likewise, in an excursion from his editorial and bibliographical province, had ventured a bald scheme of interpretation along social lines.55 Brief and impressionistic as these efforts were, they at least broke new ground. Moreover, one specific aspect of Chilean social history, education, had certainly been studied, in part at least.56

Nor had the economic history of Portalian Chile been entirely neglected prior to Jobet’s outburst.57 Thanks in part to the long-winded controversies of oreros and papeleros—between those who favored gold-backed currency and those who accepted the continuation of the incontrovertible paper money first introduced in 1878— there existed a number of informative studies of banking, public finance and monetary matters.58 The American scholar Frank W. Fetter, in a famous book, had scrutinized the twin issues of inflation and paper money in the later Portalian period.59 The history of mining had attracted attention; quite apart from Vicuña Mackenna’s rhapsodic but useful books on silver and copper,60 a notable compilation of statistics,61 and valuable studies of the Chañarcillo silvermines (discovered in 1832) and the nitrate industry62 could be mentioned. The growth of the railway network had in part been traced by Santiago Marín Vicuña,63 and a recent admirable monograph by the American historian John J. Johnson told the story of electric telegraphy to 1876.64 Ernesto Greve had completed a mammoth history of public works, based on painstaking research.65 There had been more modest contributions on agriculture66 and foreign trade.67 Two general economic histories covering the republican era had at least been attempted,68 though neither was much more than an outline. The principal economic trends and developments of Portalian times—the copper, silver and nitrate exports with their ups-and-downs; the wheat exports to California, Australia and England; the recessions of 1858-1861 and 1876-1879; the beginnings of paper money and inflation—were thus part of the common record. That Portalian Chile had been economically as well as politically successful was a common belief among the prophets of “national decline” in the Parliamentary period, a belief most forcefully expressed in Encina’s well-known book Nuestra inferioridad económica (1912).

But in general Jobet’s darts were very well aimed. The sum total of work in these fields was far from impressive. Nobody had yet tried to link together the various aspects of social and economic history so far studied in a comprehensive framework of interpretation. Jobet, who found in the Marxian approach “a fertile theory and a scientific method of research,”69 now put forward his own suggestions.

Until the mid-nineteenth century the colonial order survived intact, juridically sanctified in the 1833 Constitution . . . From the eighteen fifties onwards, ... an active and enterprising bourgeoisie arose, passionately enamoured of liberal and free trade theories . . . It carried out a systematic offensive against aristocracy and Church, and an open opposition to the governments which defended their interests . . . Liberal theories expanded and strengthened as a result of the development of the mining and commercial bourgeoisie from Montt’s administration onwards . . . [and] the economy of the country lost its national character by linking itself to the international market, which it came to depend on to a high degree.70

These themes were presented in greatly expanded fonn in Jobet’s Ensayo crítico del desarrollo económico-social de Chile (1955), which, it should be said immediately, is easily the finest piece of work of its kind. Written in an admirably lively way, it is plainly informed by a widely read, humane mind. A number of other writers of the 1950s were also strongly inspired by Marxism, if perhaps in a less imaginative and more mechanical form. Marcelo Segali, for instance, tried to show that Chile’s socioeconomic development in Portalian times possessed “many of the characteristics ... of the Old World, especially England, in the period of the first capitalist industrial revolution.”71 Hernán Ramírez Necochea, too, in his well-known studies of the 1891 civil war,72 the nineteenth-century origins of the labor movement,73 and foreign economic penetration,74 supplemented such efforts with his own. Julio Heise González, less explicitly Marxian and focusing more on the Parliamentary era, provided yet another discussion of the later nineteenth century in social terms.75 Taken together, these works certainly amounted to what Guillermo Feliú Cruz described as “a current of renewal” in Chilean historiography.76

Like Edwards and Encina, these newer historians were deeply interested in Portalian Chile. To a large extent they adopted a common approach to the period and took up very similar themes. They were far more interested than any of their predecessors in the condition of the great mass of the people, in the campesinos, miners, city artisans and port-workers—in short, Amunátegui Solar’s “people of no name.” They were all concerned, too, to find a framework for Chilean history which took account of social class divisions, either ignored altogether or regarded as unimportant by earlier writers, and the kind of progression along class-struggle lines suggested by the Marxian hypothesis. Thus Ramírez saw as a basic theme of the period the “rapid transformation” of a predominantly feudal society into “one with capitalist features, ... a capitalism which possessed undoubted strength and indubitable capacity for expansion.”77 The rising bourgeoisie, common to Jobet, Ramírez and Segali at least, was, of course, and necessarily, part and parcel of this. Ultimately, and again these writers met on common ground, this “national” capitalism was too weak to achieve full development, and the villain was the international capitalist economy, to which, “after independence, the national economy became totally subordinate.”78 (In Ramírez’ view its subordination seems to have become even more total after 1879.79) The result was that Chile “entered on a process of deformed development.”80

The various strands mentioned here were woven together in a distinctly new interpretation of the Balmaceda episode, which previous scholars had seen in purely political or constitutional terms. Balmaceda was now viewed as a far-seeing twentieth-century-style nationalist who, supported by an eager, industrialization-minded bourgeoisie, challenged British imperialism (in the form of the powerful British nitrate interest) and its oligarchic henchmen, and was overwhelmed. Had Balmaceda won, thought Ramírez, “today’s Chile would be very different.”81 For Segali, too, 1891 was a tragic turning point, the point at which Chile, “a South American great power, the vanguard of capitalist relations in the southern hemisphere,” became a “dependent country” because of the “weakness of her . . . mining and industrial bourgeoisie.”82 It may be seen from this that some residual Whiggery was to be found even among the Marxians and Marxists of the 1950s.83

It should be added in passing that the notion of a “deformed” or, more especially, a “frustrated” nineteenth-century development in Chile won prominence in an influential book of 1962 by the distinguished economist Aníbal Pinto.84 Among other things, Pinto pointed up the contrast between the early Conservative regimes, enterprising and nationally conscious, and the later Liberal period with its gadarene rush to freer trade. He found two changes in particular to be significant: the liberalization of fiscal policy and the abandonment of early efforts to protect the merchant marine, both of which issues came to a head in 1864. Echoing earlier writers,85 Pinto put some of the blame on the French economist Jean-Gustave Courcelle-Seneuil (in Chile from 1855 to 1863) who molded a whole generation of Chilean economists in the ideology of laissez-faire.

One or two points may be offered here about these social and economic approaches. The dangers in transposing the classical Marxian scheme (derived as it was from Western European history) to nineteenth-century Chile should be obvious to anyone. The tyranny of terminology, driving writers into endless scholastic discussions of whether Chile was “feudal” or “capitalist” in 1830, 1880 or whenever, might be thought to contribute little or nothing to the cause of fundamental historical research. And for all its richness the Marxian approach sometimes seems fatally able to inspire exceptionally crude and simple-minded visions of the past in which, say, Chile’s undoubtedly peripheral position in the growing international economy can be seen as accounting for practically everything in her history.86 Whether the state of Chilean economic historiography was sufficiently strong “to justify general syntheses” of this sort in the 1950s or 1960s is clearly open to the doubt expressed on this score by Claudio Véliz in 1961.87

By way of illustration, a difficulty arising out of terminology can be introduced at this point. Some would agree, perhaps, that the problem was purely terminological, but is it? As we saw, much stress was laid by some historians on the appearance of a bourgeoisie in Portalian times, a bourgeoisie which engaged in combat with the traditional aristocracy. But if by bourgeoisie is meant a mainly entrepreneurial social class with economic interests (and values) different from those of a traditional (perhaps “feudal”) landowning aristocracy,88 it is at least permissible to ask whether the evidence on this point is telling. Other modern historians have been less certain. The earlier “social” sketches already mentioned89 did not support the idea of a substantial clash of social classes. The sensitive Catholic historian Jaime Eyza-guirre, likewise, thought that few “essential” alterations in the social structure occurred between 1810 and 1890. In his view, the aristocracy had assimiliated the new magnates of mining and commerce (Jobet’s bourgeoisie) and in consequence had become more cosmopolitan and less traditional, thereby widening the psychological gap between rich and poor.90 In a sprightly essay written somewhat later, Claudio Veliz developed the theme of an upper class divided into three economic pressure groups—miners, landowners, traders—between whom there was no genuine clash of economic interest. Free trade suited them all, and there was “no place in Chile for a bourgeois capitalist group.”91 Véliz’ symbol was a banqueting table with three legs. It might be thought, given the extensive family and social links between the three groups which are coming into view as modern research moves forward, that the table in fact had only one leg.

While it cannot be claimed that research into these matters is anywhere near complete, my own impression is that the bourgeoisie tends to recede a bit on closer inspection. It is by no means certain, for instance, that the Radical party, seen by Jobet as “the political expression of the (mining) bourgeoisie,”92 differed appreciably from any other party in the social composition of its leadership. Its revered “patriarch,” that highly interesting politician Manuel Antonio Matta, was an early president of the very exclusive Club de la Unión; as another member of that august and stuffy body put it, “he performed his duties ... as scrupulously as he attended the Chamber to defend the rights of the people.”93 It is commonly supposed that the Radicals dipped lower in the social scale for their support, but it has yet to be demonstrated that other major parties did not do the same. Similarly, a closer look at the industrial pressure group supposedly supporting Balmaceda must raise more than a few doubts about the general hypothesis.94 Individual cases on their own prove little, but it might be indicated here that one of Segall’s entrepreneurs, Maximiano Errázuriz, quite apart from being an Errázuriz, was also a pillar of the Conservative party, thought by Ramírez to have been the redoubt into which the “traditional sectors” retreated as a consequence of the bourgeois offensive.95 To make such points is not to deny that there was some interesting entrepreneurship in Portalian Chile, especially in the north, or that a definite industrial effort got under way in the 1880s, symbolized by the formation, in 1883, of the Sociedad de Fomento Fabril. But it seems at least probable that such impulses came either from the aristocracy itself, or from enterprising men on the regional fringes (the Atacama miners being the classic case), from the potentates of the import-export houses, or (very often indeed, perhaps) from first- and second-generation newcomers, a group whose significance in the 1830-1891 period has not been sufficiently estimated. If they were successful and could provide “the proper credentials, namely money,”96 such people quickly entered the best society. Whether it can properly be called an aristocracy or not, a coherent, closely knit elite, reinforced with new blood and new money, seems to have remained the dominant political class throughout the Parliamentary period,97 only yielding its place, and then only in part, to others in the decades following the political upheavals of the 1920s.

Recent Research and Writing

Whatever the inconsistencies of their interpretative scheme, the pioneers of the social and economic approaches mentioned must be respected and praised for the ways in which they widened the scope of Chilean historical scholarship. In the years since Jobet’s outburst of 1949 the pace of research into the Portalian period has been steady, albeit not spectacular, and in conclusion I will try to review some of the achievements of this most recent phase. For the first time, perhaps, the highest standards of modern scholarship have been applied to some of the main issues. Continuing the honorable tradition of Claude Gay, Frank W. Fetter and George M. McBride, foreigners as well as Chileans have contributed. The footnotes to this article, indeed, reveal the energetic attentions of the great American Ph.D. industry.

Until recently, historians largely neglected the immense topic of agriculture and rural society. This is particularly striking when it is remembered that the great bulk of the Chilean people lived and worked on the land until close to the present day, and that landowners have long been a target of political abuse. Two good studies of the evolution and structure of rural property in specific localities appeared in 1956 and 1961,98 and the revival of interest in rural affairs as a result of the agrarian reform plans of the 1960s also prompted work on the condition of rural workers,99 the attitudes prevalent in the Sociedad Nacional de Agricultura,100 and the somewhat limited technical innovations of the nineteenth century.101 A floodlight has lately been focused on these and other themes by the American scholar Arnold J. Bauer, whose Chilean Rural Society from the Spanish Conquest to 1930 (Cambridge, England, 1975), a most valuable pioneering study, combines the result of close research into two key departamentos of the Central Valley with panoramic views of the development of Chilean society. Bauer, whose main focus is the period from (roughly) 1840 to 1930, points to a longue durée in Chilean rural society in which a pattern of great estates, a stable “service tenantry” (the inquilinos), and a permanent pool of unattached or floating labor provide the main features. The system, Bauer shows, was strengthened rather than radically rearranged by the stimulus of the international economy. His detailed discussion of land distribution, rural credit, the rural lower classes and the terratenientes themselves builds up into a convincing picture of a countryside—and a country—long dominated by “either traditional landowners or men for whom landownership and the lifestyle this implied continued to be a cherished value.”102 It is a picture which prompts one to speculate about a possible link between the extraordinarily stable countryside—“remarkably free of conflict”103 is Bauer’s verdict—and the political stability of the period. Perhaps Portales himself had such a link in mind when he wrote his famous sentence about “social order” being maintained by “the weight of the night.”104

Increasingly by 1891 landowners derived their initial income from other sources. Mining, as Markos J. Mamalakis has recently reminded us, was “the economy’s heartbeat”105 both in Portalian and later periods. Earlier works on mining have now been supplemented by a useful study, especially good on the technical side, of the classic nineteenth-century silver and copper zone by L. R. Pederson,106 and also by Oscar Bermúdez’ impressively documented account of the origins and development to 1879 of the nitrate business.107 Of particular interest in Bermúdez’ study is the pattern he displays of a collaborative, cosmopolitan effort in nitrates, foreign as well as local pioneering, entrepreneurship and capital playing a full part. A similar survey of the spectacular story of nitrates after 1879 is still awaited, although scholars such as J. Fred Rippy and Harold Blakemore have etched in something more than an outline as far as the crucial British role in the industry is concerned.108

Manufacturing industry, which Miguel Cruchaga Montt in the 1870s thought had “yet to be born,”109 was obviously far less important in Portalian times than the land or the mines. Much work remains to be done here, but in addition to older, brief probes,110 recent studies by Marcelo Carmagnani and Henry Kirsch have helped form a clearer view of the industrial spurt which developed after the War of the Pacific.111 Though much more attention still needs to be paid to its prehistory, and not least to the related topics of railway-building and transport in general,112 the real story of Chilean industrialization belongs to the Parliamentary period. Indeed, it is becoming increasingly clear that whatever its political importance, 1891 is scarcely a significant date in Chilean social and economic history, in which, almost certainly, the War of the Pacific marks the main dividing-line between independence and 1930.

Many of the works mentioned thus far have much to say about foreign trade. Bauer, following the useful analysis of Sergio Sepúlveda,113 has at last placed the great wheat booms in true perspective, showing that geographical position and a simple absence of competitors were the main factors in the traditionally overdramatized wheat exports to California, Australia and, later, England.114 Nor has the legend of a strong merchant marine surrendered to rapacious foreign interests by shortsighted Liberals survived the cool scrutiny of Claudio Véliz. His major work on this subject demonstrates, among other things, that even in early Portalian times, when the coasting trade (cabotaje) was reserved to Chilean vessels, the presence of foreign captains and crews was substantial. In 1835 less than fifteen percent of Chilean tonnage was commanded by native-born Chileans.115 Later, as Veliz shows, it was the short war with Spain (1865–1866) rather than the Liberal Customs Ordinance of 1864 which so drastically whittled down the merchant marine. Many ships were physically destroyed; many captains simply switched flags.116 Over and above shipping, there is much that still needs to be learned about the typical forms and patterns of foreign trade; a fine little model of what can be done in this line has recently been given by Thomas M. Bader in an article on trans-Pacific links in early Portalian times.117 The theme of “Chile in the Pacific” in this period is certainly deserving of much further work.

The British component in Chilean foreign trade was overwhelming, although direct British investment (other than in government bonds) was fairly trifling until the great nitrate boom.118 While Chile’s peripheral position in the growing international economy was influential in some overarching sense for some, perhaps much, of the country’s pattern of development, it is still far from clear whether the hard-and- fast conclusions reached by Ramírez Necochea and others in the inevitably emotive terms of imperialism, subordination or dependence would be justified by closer research. In these matters, in any case, one is never very far from the alluring but treacherous realms of “counterfactual” fantasy.119 A big question here might be the extent to which British or Anglo-Chilean trading interests were paralleled by a serious political interest or effort. Ramírez himself has revived suspicions (very much alive at the time) of British partiality to the Peru-Bolivian Confederation in the 1836–1839 war,120 but, whatever British diplomats did or desired, the Confederation lost the war. No serious scholar has yet vindicated James G. Blaine’s view of the War of the Pacific as an “English war,” and in fact V. G. Kiernan’s close study of Foreign Office sources indicates that whatever foreign interests on the spot might have thought or done, foreign governments cannot be accused of intervention in any significant way.121 Whether Chile’s freedom of maneuver internationally was affected by her overall economic position is a matter which could certainly do with further examples similar to the small-scale case study Harold Blakemore has recently provided.122

It is certainly reasonable to inquire whether Chilean foreign policy during this period was particularly concerned with such issues. The main aspects of this subject have been studied in something more than outline,123 and it is clear that the main preoccupations of Chilean policymakers attended to frontier questions, the maintenance of a South American balance of power, and the securing of Chilean hegemony on the West Coast. They seem, on the face of it, to have been less interested in, and perhaps less aware of, Chile’s peripheral role in the world economy than recent historians have been. This may have been remiss of them, but it seems to be a fact. It is possible, however, that research into Chilean diplomatic history so far has been too concerned with the traditional subject matter of such studies; further investigation obviously is in order.

Unveiling a statue in 1877, the Intendant of Valparaíso said: “when it is a matter of national gratitude, we are all equal, whether Chileans or foreigners.”124 The remark is revealing in its own right. The statue in question was to the remarkable William Wheelwright, the American entrepreneur whose multifarious Chilean activities—the foundation of the Pacific Steam Navigation Co. (1840); the first Chilean railway (1851); the first Chilean telegraph (1852); etc.—have been studied by a fellow American, Jay Kinsbruner.125 Foreigners like Wheelwright were very conspicuous in many economic activities in Portalian Chile, though many of them soon ceased, in effect, to be foreigners; their role needs reexamination. Work now in progress may soon shed much-needed light on the British and Anglo-Chilean presence. A superb model (indeed a monument) of what can be accomplished in this field is the truly massive investigation of the Germans in Chile by the French scholar Jean-Pierre Blancpain. His minutely detailed account of the German micro-société pionnière126 in Valdivia, Llanquihue and the Araucanian “frontier” is merely the most interesting part of a work which embraces the entire panorama of German influence between 1816 and 1945. Quite apart from anything else, Blancpain contributes a fresh look at a theme largely ignored since Tomás Guevara’s work at the turn of the century—the occupation and settlement of the old Araucanian Indian lands (between 1860 and 1883) which opened up a large new area for agriculture.127 Indeed, Blancpain’s volume is meritorious for one other reason: it shows the value of local, regional research. Leaving aside Sergio Vergara’s short but very competent survey of the early years of Magallanes and an earlier study of the South by Gilbert J. Butland,128 investigations of particular provinces or regions within Chile have been notable by their absence. And Magallanes, when all is said, was a very unimportant appendage of Chile. The mining centers of Atacama cry out for a serious, rounded description, as, surely, does the flourishing port of Valparaiso in the era when it reached its heyday. It has to be said, too, that in a country as centralized as Chile, the lack of histories of the capital city is striking, though the late René León Echaiz had begun to remedy this, in part, in recent years.129

It can be seen from all this that the frontiers of Portalian social and economic history are slowly being pushed back, rather in the way the Araucanian Frontier was, “line” by “line,” extended by Colonel Saavedra. There is still a very long way to go before the territory is fully settled, and it is only too easy to suggest further “lines” to be fortified in future research, some of which, no doubt, is already going on. I have already hinted at some of the gaps in the broad field of economic history, and it is to be hoped that Markos J. Mamalakis’ recent brilliant survey130 will provoke a suitable research spin-off. Social history is, perhaps, a particularly urgent priority. As Bauer rightly remarks, the need for a “comprehensive historico-quantitative study of the national elite”131 is inescapable; it is possible that family studies of the sort Dr. Mary Felstiner has done for the independence period132 could play a useful part here. Elites apart, there are still all too many of Amunátegui Solar’s “people of no name” about whom we know almost nothing. Some of them—the Valparaíso lancheros, the Santiago artisans, the workers of the Atacama mines or the salitreras spring immediately to mind—might conceivably prove slightly easier to investigate than the semi-invisible rural estate workers of Bauer’s study,133 or the elusive “floating” population which remained a feature of Chilean life well into Portalian times.134

The huge held of women’s history has been scandalously neglected in Chile, as elsewhere. Happily, work on some of its aspects is now going forward at the Catholic University in Santiago. It remains to be seen if the Portalian period contains the roots of the relative emancipation of upper-class chilenas which has so often been noted in this century.

Since Enema’s time, nobody has put together a major new study of the political history of the period, though certain of its episodes have been usefully reexamined. Portales himself, and the origins of his regime, have been studied anew by one or two historians, most valuably perhaps by Jay Kinsbruner.135 The Marxist scholar Luis Vitale has tried to incorporate the civil wars of 1851 and 1859 into the sort of social and economic framework discussed earlier,136 though some of his assertions (of the “Montt was supported by . . .” variety) require very much closer testing. In general the Montt decade retains its enigmatic features. Two interesting articles by the late Patricio Estellé discuss aspects of the liberalization process during the Pérez presidency,137 while Cristián Zegers’ monograph on the politics of Aníbal Pinto’s term of office (1876–1881) throws new light on the party maneuvers and constitutional practices of those years.138 The American scholar Wilham F. Sater, immersing himself in the domestic background to the opening phase of the War of the Pacific, has shown that Chile “muddled through” instead of being instantly overwhelmed by a wave of euphoric patriotism.139 One vital story of the later Portalian period, the contentious row between Chile and the Vatican over the archiepiscopal succession which began in 1878, has also been analyzed with much care.140 Finally, it should be mentioned that Julio Heise Gonzalez, in an important recent book, has attempted to shift the start of the “Parliamentary” era back to 1861.141

It is easy here, too, to point to areas of real ignorance. Apart from the one study mentioned, the whole issue of Church-State relations, the rock upon which the pristine unity of Chilean Conservatism broke apart, has not been closely scrutinized for a long while.142. The role of the armed forces is virgin territory only partially invaded in Frederick Nunn’s recent study.143 Above all, perhaps, the characteristic forms of political behavior (as opposed to the ins-and-outs of political history) demand serious research. How did parties operate? How did congressional habits change, as change they certainly did, between the 1830s and the 1880s? The practice of electoral intervention, denounced (with reason) by every opposition group of the period without exception, is surely one of the keys to stability of Portalian times;144 it was certainly a causal factor in the 1891 civil war. Perhaps, too, clinical descriptions of prevailing ideas and attitudes,145 not to mention those deeper layers of thought and feeling the French call mentalités, would illuminate episodes and practices which remain obscure. As part of this, indeed, those historians who began the long process of interpreting the Portalian period must themselves become objects of historical study, as they have in recent work by Allen Woll.146

The legend of success I mentioned at the outset may seem to have taken some hard blows from recent research. Yet it somehow persists, to an extent where it cannot easily be regarded purely as the figment of some nostalgic imagination. When Alberdi in 1852 raised his glass to “the honourable exception in South America,”147 his toast was not merely the gracious compliment of a grateful guest. A tolerably well-administered land with a confident governing class, Chile welcomed the winds that blew (mostly round Cape Horn) from the wider world. This was thought a virtue at the time. Looking into a late twentieth-century prism, modern Chileans are understandably much less certain; and the wider world itself has gone a long way backwards in this respect. Just possibly, to end on a note of speculation, Chile’s very openness was one of the keys to such success as she attained in Portalian times. Whether this is true or not, the story is well worth the retelling. It was not a golden age; no age ever is. But its intrinsic fascination endures.


“Pedro Urdemales,” ¿Quién ganará la elección? (1970), p. 95. Unless otherwise indicated, all books cited in footnotes were published in Santiago de Chile.


James Bryce, South America. Observations and Impressions (London, 1912), p. 543.


“Some Propositions on Chile,” in Robert D. Tomasek, ed., Latin American Politics (Garden City, N.Y., 1966), p. 384.


Domingo Morel, Ensayo sobre el desarrollo de la riqueza de Chile (1870), p.3.


La Discusión, No. 77, February 22, 1861, p. 1.


Julio Heise González, 150 años de evolución institucional (1960), p. 73.


“The Chilean Revolution of 1891 and its Historiography,” HAHR, 45 (Aug. 1965), 393–421. Since 1965 there have been several new contributions to the literature on 1891, including a 3d ed. of Hernán Ramírez Necochea, Bal-maceda y la contrarrevolución de 1891 (1972), Crisóstomo Pizarro, La revolución de 1891 (Valparaíso, 1971), and, especially, Blakemore’s own British Nitrates and Chilean Politics, 1886–1891: Balmaceda and North (London, 1974).


On Bello’s influence, see Guillermo Feliú Cruz, “Andrés Bello y la historiografía chilena,” Mapocho, IV, 3 (1965), 231–263, and Allen Woll, “The Philosophy of History in Nineteenth Century Chile: The Lastarria-Bello Controversy,” History and Theory, 13 (Oct. 1974), 273-290.


Barros Arana’s masterpiece, the Historia general de Chile, 16 vols. (1884–1902), by any standard the finest historical work ever written in Chile, brings the story down only to 1833. The most talented historians of recent times—men such as Mario Góngora, Sergio Villalobos, Alvaro Jara, Rolando Mellafe, to name but four—have also tended to avoid detailed study of the period. It is a great pity.


Its four authors were José Victorino Lastarria, Diego Barros Arana, Domingo Santa María, and Marcial González. Barros Arana did the main political narrative (pp. 30-242).


Chile bajo el imperio de la Constitución de 1828 (1861), p. 5.


Ibid., pp. 197–199.


Don Diego Portales. Juicio histórico (Valparaíso, 1861).


Introducción a los diez años de la administración Montt. D. Diego Portales, 2 vols. (Valparaíso, 1863). Vicuña Mackenna was stiffly reproved for this book by his fellow liberals. See Ricardo Donoso, Don Benjamín Vicuña Mackenna. Su vida, sus escritos y su tiempo (1925), pp. 152–155. I am indebted to Dr. Michael Varley for this reference.


Historia de los diez años de la administración Montt. 5 vols. (1862–1863). Despite the title, it covers only the civil war of 1851. Its opening passage, a description of La Serena, is purest poetry. Vicuña Mackenna reverted to the theme of 1851 some years later in his Historia de la jomada del 20 de abril. Una batalla en las calles de Santiago (1878).


Historia de la revolución constituyente 1858–1859 (1889).


Ibid., p. 215.


Jorge Huneeus Gana, Cuadro histórico de la producción intelectual de Chile (1910), p. 292.


Historia de la administración Errázuriz. Precedida de una introducción que contiene la reseña del movimiento de los partidos desde 1823 hasta 1871 (Valparaíso, 1877). References here are to the 2d ed. (1935).


Ibid., p. 119.


Ibid., p. 204.


A possible, though only barely possible, exception might be Robustiano Vera, Historia de Chile desde el descubrimiento hasta nuestros días, 3 vols. (1903–1905), vol. III of which takes the story from Portales to 1881. It is an extraordinarily pedestrian narrative which shows something of the liberal approach. The 1859 crisis is described, in a phrase which could have come from any opposition newspaper of that year, as “a terrible epoch provoked by the government” (III, 397); the Errázuriz Zañartu presidency is pictured as a “glorious” period of advance “in the sphere of freedom and the conquests of social progress” (III, 613); the final defeat of the Araucanians is “a glorious page” in the Pinto presidency (III, 755); and so on. Vera presents a fairly standard liberal account of the 1830s, but is respectful towards Portales (see III, 76).


Historia de Chile durante los cuarenta años transcurridos desde 1831 hasta 1871, 2 vols. (1875–1876), I, 267–270. A second, revised, edition was published under the more accurate title, Chile bajo el gobierno del general don Joaquín Prieto, 4 vols. (1900–1903).


See also his “El Ministro Portales,” Revista Chilena, 1 (1875) 74–108.


Portales (Paris, 1879), pp. 182, 452. Given the unfortunate events of 1857—1858, Montt did not receive a similar apotheosis at Conservative hands.


Historia de la administración Santa María, 2 vols. (1889). This remains the only full study of the Santa María government.


“Sucinta reseña histórica de la Constitución de la República de Chile jurada y promulgada el 25 de mayo de 1833,” Revista Forense Chilena, II, 12 (1887), 713.


It has however been suggested that Barros Arana painted an exaggeratedly agreeable picture of the Bulnes decade in order to contrast it by implication with the Montt decade that followed; there are a few sentences in the book which could lend themselves to this view. Barros Arana supported Montt in 1851 but, like so many others, had become a bitter foe by 1859. One of the great charms of Un decenio is the way in which Barros Arana sometimes recalls his own youthful impressions of the time.


Estudio de la historia de Chile, (2d ed., 1911), pp. 396-397. Galdames’ book, long used in schools, went into a 14th ed. in 1974. It was translated into English by Isaac J. Cox as A History of Chile (Chapel Hill, N.C., 1941).


The article on Chile in the famous Eleventh Edition of the Encyclopaedia Britannica (Cambridge, 1910) reflects this general view, e.g.: “the gradual and peaceful transition to a liberal policy was proof of the progress which had been made in political training,” VI, 155.


Barros Arana dedicated the eleventh volume of his Historia general, then appearing, to “the good Chileans” who had fought for “the reestablishment and consolidation of the institutions and liberties which made [Chile] happy and prosperous.”


The historiography of the war is really a separate topic, not dealt with here. It has for the most part proceeded along orthodox military and diplomatic lines. Both Barros Arana and Vicuña Mackenna wrote very detailed accounts while the war was still going on (rather as John Buchan did in England during World War I) and there have been numerous studies of campaigns and military and naval heroes. A recent example is Augusto Pinochet, Guerra del Pacífico. 1879 (1972). The war also prompted the only major printed collection of documents covering any part of the Portalian period: Pascual Ahumada Moreno, ed., Guerra del Pacífico: Recopilación completa de todos los documentos oficiales, correspondencias y demás publicaciones referentes a la guerra, 9 vols. (Valparaíso, 1884–1890).


La Guerra del Pacífico, 3 vols. (1911-1919), II, 699-700.


This was the late Jorge Inostrosa’s Adios al Séptimo de Línea, 5 vols. (1955-1959), based accurately on the War of the Pacific. In addition to being serialized at inordinate length on the radio, it also inspired a popular phonograph record, still selling well.


See his Chilenos en California (1954) and Casa de antigüedades (1972) for examples.


In its treatment of domestic history, as distinct from foreign wars, the Whig version never, perhaps, quite attained crystal clarity, but always retained a certain vestigial liberal or conservative or radical or monttvarista coloring. Agustín Edwards’ solid narration of the years 1841-1876, Cuatro presidentes de Chile, 2 vols. (Valparaíso, 1932), just about qualifies, I think, as a Whig history.


(2d ed., 1967), p. 13.


Ibid., p. 350.


This literature is concisely surveyed in Fredrick B. Pike, Chile and the United States, 1880—1962 (Notre Dame, 1963), pp. 94—100.


Historia social de Chile (1932); El progreso intelectual y político de Chile (1936) ; La democracia en Chile (1946) ; all of these cover the Portalian era.


For Edwards (1874-1932) see the recent symposium, María Ignacia Alamos V., et al., Perspectiva de Alberto Edwards (1976), and Raúl Silva Castro, “Don Alberto Edwards,” Revista Chilena de Historia y Geografía, 78 (Jan.-Apr. 1933), 5-64, which includes a bibliography. Edwards also wrote film scripts, detective stories and fantasy tales.


La fronda aristocrática, 7th ed. (1972), p. 15.


Ibid., p. 173. Cerro Grande was the decisive battle of 1859.


Edwards thought that General Ibáñez (dictator, 1927-1931) might be one, and served in his cabinet. He lived just long enough to be disillusioned.


The lower classes are simply “inert matter”; La fronda, p. 22.


Ibid., especially pp. 15-26.


For Encina (1874-1965) see Charles C. Griffin’s admirable article, “Francisco Encina and Revisionism in Chilean History,” HAHR, 36(Feb. 1957), 1-28. See also Guillermo Feliú Cruz, Francisco A. Encina, historiador, (1968), based on conversations with him; Ricardo Donoso, Francisco A. Encina, simulador, 2 vols. (1969-1970), an amazing work, highly impassioned but very detailed, indispensable reading for anyone using Encina; Julio César Jobet, Terms históricos chilenos (1973), pp. 71-107. Encina explains his own conception of “genetic history,” for what it is worth, in a prologue to vol. 19 of his Historia de Chile, v-xxiv.


Francisco A. Encina and Leopoldo Castedo, Resumen de la historia de Chile, 3 vols. (1954) is a compressed summary of the twenty-volume work, and is valuable for its illustrations and appendices.


Charles C. Griffin, “Encina and Revisionism,” p. 7. Edwards had made a few tentative suggestions along racial lines; La fronda, pp. 17-19. For a brief survey of early twentieth-century racialist literature in Chile, see Pike, Chile, pp. 290-292 and 443-444.


Encina, Historia de Chile, XIV, 165. Both Edwards and Encina enormously admired Montt. Edwards’ excellent El gobierno de don Manuel Montt (1933) is the only section of a planned narrative of 1810-1910 he completed.


“Notas sobre la historiografía chilena,” Atenea, Nos. 291-292 (Concepción, Sept.-Oct. 1949), 359-363.


La tiranía en Chile, 2 vols. (2d ed., 1945), I, 21-25.


La eterna crisis chilena (1931), pp. 13-20. Keller, one of the liveliest twentieth-century Chilean minds, was prominent in the nacista movement of the 1930s.


Historia social, p. 7. “People of no name” is my translation of los que no tienen apellido. The other section of the book considers the aristocracy, which Amunátegui Solar thought had come to an end with the suppression of the mayorazgos in the laws of 1852 and 1857.


“Un esquema de la evolución social de Chile en el siglo XIX,” in Feliú Cruz, La abolición de la esclavitud en Chile (1942), appendix. This essay has, perhaps, been given more than its due meed of praise.


See Amanda Labarca Hubertson, Historia de la enseñanza en Chile (1939), and José Muñoz Hermosilla, Historia elemental de la pedagogía chilena (1918). Domingo Amunátegui Solar, El Instituto Nacional bajo los rectorados de don Manuel Montt, don Francisco Puente y don Antonio Varas, 1833-1845 (1891) is a close study of the early years of a key institution. For the University, see Luis Galdames’ essay in Universidad de Chile, La Universidad de Chile, 1843-1934 (1934).


See Sergio Villalobos R., “La historiografía económica de Chile: Sus comienzos,” Historia, 10 (1971), 7-32. Villalobos adds a bibliography (pp. 33— 56) on economic history up to 1970. Of the 214 items listed, some 130 were published prior to 1949, and of these some 60 relate to the 1830-1891 period in whole or part.


See especially Ramón E. Santelices, Los bancos chilenos (1893); Guillermo Subercaseaux, Estudios económicos. El papel moneda en Chile y ensayo sobre la teoría del valor (1898) ; Evaristo Molina, Bosquejo de la hacienda pública de Chile desde la independencia hasta la fecha (1898); Agustín Ross, Chile, 1851-1910. Sesenta años de cuestiones monetarias y financieras y de problemas bancarios (Valparaíso, 1910).


Monetary Inflation in Chile (Princeton, 1931). Pp. 1-65 cover the period to 1891.


El libro de la plata (1882) and El libro del cobre i del carbón de piedra en Chile (1883). Despite its title the latter book does not cover coal mining.


Alberto Herrmann, La producción en Chile de los metales i minerales más importantes, de las sales naturales, del azufre i del guano desde la conquista hasta fines del año 1902 (1903).


Roberto Hernández, Juan Godoy o el descubrimiento de Chañarcillo (Valparaíso, 1932), and his El salitre. Resumen histórico desde su descubrimiento y explotación (Valparaiso, 1930); E. Semper and E. Michels, La industria del salitre en Chile, trans. O. Gandarillas and G. Salas (1908).


Los ferrocarriles de Chile, (3d ed., 1912). It should be stressed, however, that this work is essentially a contemporary survey and its historical interest is incidental. See note 112.


Pioneer Telegraphy in Chile (Stanford, 1948).


Historia de la ingeniería en Chile, 4 vols. (1938-1944), II, 351-602, III and IV cover the Portalian period to 1888.


The major contemporary survey can be found in Claudio Gay, Historia física y política de Chile . . . Agricultura, 2 vols. (Paris, 1862-1865), reprinted, with a valuable introduction by Sergio Villalobos R., 2 vols. (1973). Teodoro Schneider, La agricultura chilena en los últimos cincuenta años (1904) is a very general work. George M. McBride’s classic, Chile, Land and Society (Baltimore, 1936), though primarily a modern survey, contains suggestive ideas about the nineteenth century.


The best example was Agustín Ross, Memoria sobre las relaciones comerciales entre Chile y la Gran Bretaña (London, 1892).


Daniel Martner, Estudio de política comercial chilena e historia económica nacional (1923), described by Villalobos R. (“La historiografía,” p. 24) as “the first and only economic history of Chile.” Slanted, as its tide suggests, towards discussion of commercial policy, it also suffers from an administration-by-administration treatment of the Portalian era. Oscar Alvarez Andrews, Historia del desarrollo industrial de Chile (1936) covers much more than is indicated in its title.


“Notas,” p. 362.


Ibid., p. 371.


El desarrollo del capitalismo en Chile. Cinco ensayos dialécticos (1953), p. 47.


La guerra civil de 1891. Antecedentes económicos (1951). References here are to the retitled 3d ed., Balmaceda y la contrarrevolución de 1891 (1972).


Historia del movimiento obrero en Chile. Siglo XIX (1956).


Historia del imperialismo en Chile (1960).


La Constitución de 1925 y las nuevas tendencias político-sociales (1951).


Prologue to Jobet, Ensayo crítico, p. xix.


Ramírez, Balmaceda, p. 255.


Historia del imperialismo, p. 75.


Ibid., pp. 99-164.


Historia del movimiento obrero, p. 179.


Balmaceda, p. 260.


Desarrollo del capitalismo, p. 241.


Cf. Jobet’s eulogistic sentences on the Portalian era in Ensayo crítico, pp. 229-230. I regard Jobet as Marxian, Ramírez and Segali as Marxists; the distinction is an important one.


Chile, un caso de desarrollo frustrado, 3d ed. (1973), pp. 25-103.


Martner had thought Courcelle-Seneuil’s influence unfortunate. See also Leonardo Fuentealba Hernández, Courcelle-Seneuil. Errores del liberalismo económico (1944). Considering the large-scale generalizations which have been pinned on them by historians and others, Chile’s tariff policies in this period have remained surprisingly unstudied. An important contribution has now been made in this field by William F. Sater in his article “Economic Nationalism and Tax Reform in Late Nineteenth Century Chile,” The Americas 33 (Oct. 1976), 311-335.


See Andre Gunder Frank, Capitalism and Underdevelopment in Latin America. Historical Studies of Chile and Brazil (revised ed., New York, 1969). Pp. 55-85 “cover” the period.


Historia de la marina mercante de Chile (1961), p. 20.


Some might prefer a term such as “elite,” “oligarchy,” or simply “upper class.” It probably does not matter very much provided we know what we are talking about. My sole justification for retaining the term “aristocracy” here, and I would not press my argument too far, is a strong impression that in Portalian times upper-class Chileans possessed the sense that they did form an aristocracy, and behaved accordingly, though their political rhetoric by and large did not recognize this and at times explicitly denied it. They certainly possessed an obsessive clannish interest in family relationships. Newcomers quickly caught on, which accounts for the non-Spanish elements to be found in upper-class Chilean surnames well before 1891—Edwards Ross, Waddington Urrutia, Walker Martínez, Huneeus Gana, and so on.


See notes 52, 53 and 55. These writers saw changes in the composition of the aristocracy or oligarchy but scarcely an emerging bourgeoisie in the European sense. Alberto Edwards regarded the Portalian aristocracy as both “feudal” and “bourgeois” at once; La fronda, pp. 16-17.


Chile durante el gobierno de Errázuriz Echaurren 1896-1900 (2d ed., 1957), pp. 18-20. Eyzaguirre’s tragic death in 1968 deprived us of his planned account of the 1830-1891 period. His short essay, Fisonomía histórica de Chile (2d ed., 1958), pp. 105-142 gives clues to what it might have been like.


“La mesa de tres patas” [1963] in Hernán Godoy, ed., Estructura social de Chile (1971), pp. 232-240.


Ensayo crítico, p. 53. Jobet, however, makes it clear that the Radicals’ social and economic ideas were no different from anyone else’s.


Abraham König, Reseña histórica del Club de la Unión de Santiago (1886), p. 19.


See the exploratory essay by Henry Kirsch, Balmaceda y la burguesía nacional ¿realidad o utopia? (1970), mimeo. Kirsch cannot detect a clear break in industrial policy in 1891. Blakemore, British Nitrates, pp. 209—227, shows that nitrate policies, too, remained pretty much unchanged.


Balmaceda, p. 257. An earlier much-lauded entrepreneur, José Santos Ossa, was also a Conservative in his final years, prior to dashing off on an expedition in search of guano to the Islas Desventuradas, during which he died (1877).


Aníbal Pinto, Chile, p. 62.


See the famous article by Paul Reinsch, “Parliamentary Government in Chile,” American Political Science Review, 3 (1908-1909), 507-538, especially pp. 507-508. Numerous recent studies of contemporary Chile point to the continued existence of a closely knit elite: see Ricardo Lagos, La concentración del poder económico (1965); also of interest is Maurice Zeitlin and R. E. Ratcliff, “Research Methods for the Analysis of the Internal Structure of Dominant Classes: The Case of Landlords and Capitalists in Chile,” Latin American Research Review, 10 (Fall 1975), 5-61.


Jean Borde and Mario Góngora, Evolución de la propiedad rural en el valle de Puangue, 2 vols. (1956) ; Rafael Baraona, Ximena Aranda, and Roberto Santana, Valle de Putaendo. Estudio de estructura agraria (1961). Both of these include 1830-1891 as part of a much wider sweep. An earlier regional study, Ricardo Donoso and Fanor Velasco, La propiedad austral (1928), reprinted 1973, dealt with the southern provinces, but mostly in terms of the legislation on property questions in that area.


Horacio Aránguiz, “La situación de los trabajadores agrícolas en el siglo XIX,” Estudios de Historia de las Instituciones Políticas y Sociales, 2 (1967), 5-31.


Gonzalo Izquierdo, Un estudio de las ideologías chilenas. La Sociedad de Agricultura en el siglo XIX (1968). The role of the S.N.A. as a political pressure group in the later part of this period is studied in Thomas C. Wright, “The Sociedad Nacional de Agricultura in Chilean Politics, 1869-1939” (Ph.D. Diss., University of California, Berkeley, 1971).


Silvia Hernández, “Transformaciones tecnológicas en la agricultura de Chile central, siglo XIX,” Cuadernos del Centro de Estudios Socio-Económicos, 3 (1966).


Bauer, Chilean Rural Society, p. 217. Bauer’s articles, “Chilean Rural Labor in the Nineteenth Century,” American Historical Review 76 (Oct. 1971), 1059-1083, and “The Hacienda El Huique in the Agrarian Structure of Nineteenth Century Chile,” Agricultural History 46 (Oct. 1972), 455-470, are also of considerable interest.


Chilean Rural Society, p. 222. This view is self-evidently true as far as serious rural conflict in the sense of major disturbances is concerned; the extent of minor, localized rural conflict is much less easy to determine, and here a series of detailed regional studies would be invaluable. Such episodes as that of the rural montoneras in the 1859 civil war (organized and led by landowners) could perhaps be usefully reexamined in this context.


Portales to Tocornal, 16 July 1832. Ernesto de la Cruz and Guillermo Feliú Cruz, eds., Epistolario de don Diego Portales, 3 vols. (1936–1937), II, 228.


The Growth and Structure of the Chilean Economy (New Haven, 1976), p. 349.


The Mining Industry of the Norte Chico, Chile (Evanston, Ill., 1966).


Historia del salitre desde sus orígenes hasta la Guerra del Pacífico (1963). A second volume covering the later phase is hoped for. An anticipation may, perhaps, be found in Bermúdez’ article, “El salitre de Tarapacá y Antofagasta durante la ocupación militar chilena,” Anales de la Universidad del Norte, 5 (Antofagasta, 1966), 131–182.


J. Fred Rippy, “Economic Enterprises of the ‘Nitrate King’ and his Associates in Chile,” Pacific Historical Review, 17 (Nov. 1948), 457–465 and “British Investments in the Chilean Nitrate Industry,” InterAmerican Economic Affairs, VIII, 2 (1954), 3–10. Harold Blakemore, British Nitrates, especially pp. 14–69, 91–115 and 125–160. For a recent “overview” see Michael Monteon, “The British in the Atacama Desert: The Cultural Bases of Economic Imperialism,” Journal of Economic History, 35 (Mar. 1975), 117–133.


Estudio sobre la organización económica y la hacienda pública de Chile (1878-80), 3 vols. (2d ed., Madrid, 1929), I, 198.


J. Fred Rippy and Jack Pfeiffer, “Notes on the Dawn of Manufacturing in Chile,” HAHR, 28 (May 1948), 292–303; Jack B. Pfeiffer, “Notes on the Heavy Equipment Industry in Chile, 1880–1910,” HAHR, 32 (Feb. 1952), 139–144. Segali, El desarrollo del capitalismo, also contains interesting material.


Marcelo Carmagnani, Sviluppo industriale e sottosviluppo economico: il caso cileno (1860–1920) (Turin, 1971); Henry Kirsch, “The Industrialization oí Chile, 1880–1930” (Ph.D. Diss., University of Florida, 19J3). Carmagnani’s sixty or so pages of statistics are especially valuable. Kirsch’s findings tend to bear out my own opinion, stated above, on the question of the nature of the national elite.


On this topic, see Robert B. Oppenheimer, “Chilean Transportation Development; The Railroads and Socioeconomic Change in the Central Valley 1840–1885” (Ph.D. Diss., University of California, Los Angeles, 1976) and John H. Whaley, “Transportation in Chile’s Bio-Bio Region, 1850–1915 (Ph.D. Diss., University of Indiana, 1974). I have not seen either of these.


Sepulveda, El trigo chileno en el mercado mundial (1956).


Bauer, Chilean Rural Society, pp. 62–73.


Véliz, Marina mercante, pp. 52–55.


Ibid., pp. 183–189.


“Before the Gold Fleets: Trade and Relations between Chile and Australia, 1830–1848,” Journal of Latin American Studies, 6 (Nov. 1974), 35–58. T. W. Keeble, Commercial Relations between British Overseas Territories and South America, 1806–1914 (London, 1970) also supplies information on this topic.


See J. Fred Rippy, “A Century of British Investments in Chile,” Pacific Historical Review, 21 (Nov. 1952), 341–348, and also C. W. Centner, “Great Britain and Chilean Mining, 1830-1914,” Economic History Review, 12 (1942), 76–82.


For a rather shrewd two-sentence “counterfactual” speculation, see Bauer, Chilean Rural Society, pp. 214–215.


“El gobierno británico y la guerra contra la Confederación Peru-Boliviana,” Revista Chilena de Historia y Geografía, 121 (1961), 122–139.


“Foreign Interests in the War of the Pacific,” HAHR, 35 (Feb. 1955), 14–36.


“Limitations of Dependency: An Historian’s View and Case Study,” Boletín de Estudios Latinoamericanos y del Caribe, 18 (Amsterdam, 1975), 74–87.


The principal monograph, based heavily on primary materials, is Robert N. Burr, By Reason or Force. Chile and the Balancing of Power in South America 1830–1905 (Berkeley, 1965), and a general account may be found in Mario Barros, Historia diplomática de Chile, 1541–1938 (Barcelona, 1970), pp. 92–483. Specific periods and episodes are dealt with in Alberto Cruchaga Ossa, Estudios de historia diplomática chilena (1962), pp. 108–147; Carlos Mery Squella, Relaciones diplomáticas entre Chile y los Estados Unidos de América, 1829–41 (1965); S. Carrasco Domínguez, El reconocimiento de la independencia de Chile por España (1961); W. C. Davis, The Last Conquistadores: The Spanish Intervention in Peru and Chile, 1863–1866 (Athens, Ga., 1950); Geoffrey Smith, “The Role of José M. Balmaceda in Preserving Argentine Neutrality in the War of the Pacific,” HAHR, 49 (May 1969), 254–267; W. J. Dennis, Tacna and Arica (New Haven, 1931). Ximena Rojas Valdés, Don Adolfo Ibáñez: Su gestión con el Perú y Bolivia, 1870–1879 (1970) discusses the work of the first Chilean to hold foreign affairs as a separate portfolio. See also the books cited in note 126, below. Many works on diplomatic history, especially those on frontier questions, are obviously polemical in nature. For further works, see the bibliographies in Burr, Reason or Force, and Barros, Historia diplomática.


Quoted in Arthur C. Wardle, Steam Conquers the Pacific (London, 1940), p. 125.


“The Business Activities of William Wheelwright in Chile, 1829–1860” (Ph.D. Diss., New York University, 1964).


Blancpain, Les allemands au Chili, 1816–1945 (Cologne, 1974). This mammoth (1162-page) effort rather overshadows George F. W. Young, Germans in Chile. Immigration and Colonization, 1849–1914 (New York, 1974), both in time span and analytical depth. There is scope for a good study of Franco-Chilean relations in this period. The less important topic of Chile-U.S. relations is covered in part in Fredrick B. Pike, Chile, pp. 23–30 and 47–85. Earlier studies include H. C. Evans, Chile and its Relations with the United States (Durham, N.C., 1927) and W. H. Sherman, The Diplomatic and Commercial Relations of the United States and Chile, 1820–1914 (Boston, 1926).


Historia de la civilización de Araucanía, 3 vols. (1900–1902), vol. III of which takes the story up to 1883.


Sergio Vergara Quiroz, Economía y sociedad en Magallanes, 1843–1877 (1973); Gilbert J. Butland, The Human Geography of Southern Chile (London, 1957), especially pp. 36–84.


Historia de Santiago, 2 vols. (1975), II, 59–176. The same author’s Nuñohue (Buenos Aires, 1972), pp. 113–174, gives information on the area now covered by the well-off eastern suburbs.


Mamalakis, Chilean Economy, pp. 3–85 covers the period 1840–1930 in one fell swoop; where it touches Portalian Chile it is of the greatest interest. Apart from this, no recent attempt has been made to summarize the economic history of the period, with the possible exception of Jacinto Vaello, Estructura y evolución de la economía colonial (1971), pp. 79–311, which deals with the span from 1810 to 1920. Vaello’s account of Chilean society is roughly in line with the social and economic approaches of the 1950s already mentioned.


Bauer, Chilean Rural Society, p. 207.


“Kinship Politics in the Chilean Independence Movement,” HAHR, 56 (Feb. 1976), 58–80; “The Larraín Family in the Independence of Chile, 1789–1830” (Ph.D. Diss., Stanford University, 1970). The distinguished Edwards family would be an obvious topic for similar treatment in the period after 1830. For an interesting study of part of the late-colonial aristocracy, see Jacques Barbier, “Elites and Cadres in Bourbon Chile,” HAHR, 52 (Aug. 1972), 416–435.


Bauer, Chilean Rural Society, pp. 50–57 and 145–170.


Mario Góngora, “Vagabundaje y sociedad fronteriza en Chile, siglos XVII a XIX,” Cuadernos del Centro de Estudios Socio-Económicos, 2 (1966), touches the edge of our period.


Diego Portales. Interpretative Essays on the Man and Times (The Hague, 1967). Of recent Chilean biographies, Roberto Hernández Ponce, Diego Portales, vida y tiempo (1974) is perhaps the most professional. The triumphant generals of 1973 took Portales as their main hero, somewhat ironically in view of his tough handling of the military problem in 1830.


Las guerras civiles de 1851 y 1859 en Chile (Concepción, 1971). Vitale’s Interpretación marxista de la historia de Chile, 3 vols. (1967–1971), III, 135–286 covers the period from 1830 to 1859. It is a solid reworking of the social and economic approaches of the 1950s.


“El debate de 1865 sobre la libertad de cultos y de conciencia,” Estudios de Historia de las Instituciones Políticas y Sociales, 2 (1967), 183–225; “El Club de la Reforma de 1868–1871. Notas para el estudio de una combinación política en el siglo XIX,” Historia, 9 (1970), 111–135. Patricio Estellé’s tragically early death in 1975 was an irreparable loss to Chilean historical studies. He will be long remembered by his many friends.


Aníbal Pinto, historia política de su gobierno (1969).


“Chile during the First Months of the War of the Pacific,” Journal of Latin American Studies, 5 (May 1973), 133–158. Sater’s interesting book The Heroic Image in Chile. Arturo Prat, Secular Saint (Berkeley, 1973), pp. 48–68 covers the effects of Prat’s death on wartime Chile.


Miguel Guzmán Rosales and Octavio Vio Henríquez, Don Francisco de Paula Taforó y la vacancia arzobispal de Santiago, 1878–1887 (1964).


Historia de Chile. El período parlamentario 1861-1925, tomo I (1975). It should, however, be stressed that the great bulk of this interesting book is devoted to the period after 1891.


Carlos Silva Cotapos, Historia eclesiástica de Chile (1925), covers the period, very much from the Church’s viewpoint, in a survey extending to 1910.


The Military in Chilean History (Albuquerque, 1975), pp. 3–79. Nunn says very little about the National (or Civic) Guard, the militia reorganized by Portales, which played a key part for at least three decades. Nor does he have much to say on the Navy which, however, is in part covered in Carlos López Urrutia, Historia de la marina de Chile (1969), pp. 157–331.


The fullest treatment of this topic to date is in José Miguel Yrarrázaval Larraín, El Presidente Balmaceda, 2 vols. (1940), I, 25–190, but it needs closer examination.


My own Ideas and Politics of Chilean Independence 1808–1833 (Cambridge, Eng., 1967), provides a description of Conservative ideas in 1829–1833 (pp. 333–346) but is superficial in its treatment of the new regime in action (pp. 347–356). I hope in due course to finish a sequel dealing with the period to 1862. On the estanqueros, Portales’ own group, see Juan Eduardo Vargas, “El pensamiento politico del grupo estanquero,” Historia, 9 (1970), 7–35.


Allen Woll, “The Politics of History in Nineteenth Century Chile” (Ph.D. Diss., University of Wisconsin, 1974). See also his “For God and Country: History Textbooks and the Secularization of Chilean Society,” Journal of Latin American Studies, 7 (May 1975), 23–43; “Positivism and History in Nineteenth Century Chile: José Victorino Lastarria and Valentín Letelier,” Journal of the History of Ideas, 37 (July–Sept. 1976), 493–506; and his article cited in note 8.


El Mercurio, No. 7, 346, Valparaiso, March 5, 1852, p. 2.

Author notes


The author, Reader in History at the University of Essex, wishes to express his appreciation to Dr. Harold Blakemore, Dr. Alan Knight, Professor William F. Sater, Dr. Michael Varley and Professor Allen Woll for their helpful comments on an early draft of this article.