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Civilization 4: Colinization: Spanish Profile


  • Civilization 4: Colinization: Spanish Profile

    Spanish Profile

    Spanish Monarchy

    The Spanish monarchy of the 15th century rose from almost six hundred years of intermarrying between four families--the Houses of Castile, Leon, Aragon, and Navarre. The kings of Spain, however, were of little consequence among the crowned heads of Europe until the 13th century. Before that time, they lived in uncomfortably cramped quarters in the north of Spain, shut off from the south by the occupation of the Moors. But with the victory of the Castilian King Alfonso VIII at the Battle of the Navas de Tolosa in 1212 AD, the Spanish monarchs began a slow push to reclaim the peninsula that would continue for the next three hundred years.

    In the 15th century, two of the four kingdoms of Spain would rise to supremacy -- Castile in the west and Aragon in the east. The marriage of Isabella I of Castile and Ferdinand II of Aragon -- who became known as the Catholic Kings -- brought nearly all of Spain together under the control of one monarchy. And in 1492, they would change the face of Spain forever, for in that year the Catholics overtook the last Moorish stronghold in Spain, uniting the country for the first time in history. And of course in the same year a certain Christopher Columbus would make an extraordinary discovery, giving the Spanish monarchs the largest and wealthiest empire since the fall of the Caesars.

    Simon Bolivar Founder of Gran Colombia Lived: 1783 - 1830 Traits: Conquistador (+25% vs. Natives), Determined (+100% effect of Liberty Bells on Rebel Sentiment)

    Simon Bolivar was the founder of Gran Colombia, the first confederation of South American territories free of Spanish rule.

    Born to a wealthy Venezuelan family in 1783, Bolivar enjoyed a privileged upbringing. He was educated by private tutors in the classical thought of the Romans and Greeks as well as in the more contemporary Enlightenment ideals. He studied both in Venezuela and Spain and traveled across Europe to expand his studies. While in France, Bolivar attended the coronation of Napoleon as the Emperor of France, an act the young Venezuelan saw as distasteful and an abandonment of the republican ideals the French Revolution had attempted to instill.

    When he returned home in 1807, Bolivar found that the meddling of Napoleon came with him. Napoleon had deposed the Spanish monarchy, and placed his own brother on the seat of the Spanish throne. This placed Joseph Napoleon in charge of the affairs of all citizens of Spain and the Spanish colonies, including Venezuela. Banding together, Bolivar and other concerned members of Venezuelan society declared their territories independent from Spain in 1810.

    This new Venezuelan republic would last only a year before it was overthrown by forces loyal to the new Spanish king. However, Bolivar and his soldiers successfully retook the Venezuelan capital of Caracas two years later in 1813, an act that would earn the young general the title of "The Liberator." While the title would last, Bolivar's hold on the capital would not, and his army was once again driven out of the city.

    Gathering allies from Haiti, Great Britain and Colombia, Bolivar once again struck against the Royalist forces. Meeting on the field of battle in Boyaca, Colombia, Bolivar and his forces decisively defeated the Royalists in 1819, allowing the republican forces to assume control of the governments of Colombia and Venezuela. In 1821, Bolivar and his compatriots formally declared the creation of the independent state of Gran Colombia.

    Bolivar was yet again successful when his aid was requested by Jose de San Martin -- known as the Liberator of Peru -- to help drive the remaining Spanish forces from Peru. His victories had allowed large parts of modern Ecuador, Colombia, Venezuela, and Peru to become free and united under the helm of Gran Colombia.

    But despite all his military successes, triumph on the political battlefield eluded Bolivar. The many disparate political groups of South America all sought a significant degree of independent power in the nascent Colombian government, whereas Bolivar believed that only a centralized government with a powerful executive could succeed.

    In an effort to force through his policies, Bolivar declared himself dictator in 1828, but it was a failed gesture. The infighting was too much for Bolivar and in 1830 he left politics and entered a state of self-imposed exile. An unexpected illness claimed The Liberator the very same year.

    Jose de San Martin
    Liberator of Chile, 1st President of Peru
    Lived: 1778 - 1850
    Traits: Conquistador (+25% vs. Natives), Resourceful (-50% XP needed for unit promotions)

    Groomed from a young age for the life of a soldier, Jose de San Martin would grow to lead the Peruvian and Chilean people to independence from Spain.

    Born in Argentina, but raised in Spain, by the age of 11, Jose de San Martin was already a member of the Spanish armed forces. In the Peninsular War between Spain and France in 1808, San Martin began as an aide to the Spanish leadership; by war's end he had attained the rank of Lieutenant Colonel.

    In the midst of the war, the Spanish king abdicated from power to be replaced by an appointment of the opposing French. The citizens of Argentina, upon hearing of the Spanish government's state of disarray, decided that there would be no better time to declare independence. When news of the Argentine revolution reached him, San Martin elected to support the rebels' cause, leaving Spain for the New World. Upon his arrival, he was immediately recruited by the rebel forces to begin mustering and training an elite regiment. His regiment, known as the Mounted Grenadiers, became some of the finest troops South America had to offer.

    Once his troops were ready, the normally reserved drillmaster suggested a daring move -- marching an army from Argentina to Chile through the peaks of the Andes. His plan was regarded as madness by many, but San Martin managed to muster more than enough brave souls to join him in the endeavor. Dividing his forces into six columns for easier travel through the difficult terrain, San Martin planned for each column to arrive within two days of one another, a highly unlikely prospect given the extreme terrain and great danger that lay ahead.

    But on February 12, nearly all four thousand troops stepped out from the shadows of the Andes onto the plains of Chacabuco, prepared to face the numerically superior Spanish forces. Despite having just traversed some of the most inhospitable terrain on earth, San Martin's "Army of the Andes," soundly defeated the Royalists. They then marched on the Chilean capital of Santiago, taking the city with little fuss. Despite what many thought to be a crushing loss on the field of Tacla roughly a month later, Chile was to remain in the hands of San Martin and his revolutionary followers.

    The citizens of Chile attempted to appoint San Martin governor of their colony, but he refused. He had his sights set on the bastion of Spanish power in South America --Lima, Peru. San Martin took his forces north, offering the Spanish forces in Lima the opportunity to surrender and set up a new constitutional government. Their refusal sealed their fate -- in 1821, San Martin marched into Lima, taking the city for the rebels. He was soon proclaimed the first President of Peru.

    Small pockets of Spanish forces remained scattered throughout the Peruvian countryside and in order to ensure their removal, San Martin requested a conference with Simon Bolivar, the Liberator of the north whose military zone of influence overlapped that of San Martin.

    The two met in the city of Guayaquil, Ecuador in 1822. What they discussed is unknown, but the result is -- on that day San Martin stepped down from his position, leaving the fate of South America in the hands of Bolivar. San Martin had previously displayed a wavering of passion for his cause, but it took the words of Bolivar to force a decision. Upon stepping down, San Martin settled with his wife and children on a farm in Argentina for two years before migrating to Europe, where he spent the remainder of his days moving from country to country in order to escape the numerous revolutions sweeping the continent at the time. He died in France in 1850.

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