Cover

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Title page, Copyright, Dedication

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Contents

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pp. vii-viii

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Preface

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pp. ix-xii

In previous volumes it has been a pleasure to acknowledge the generous financial support of many organizations and institutions for research abroad in Mexico, Spain, and France. Now it is appropriate to acknowledge the never-failing cooperation of Princeton University: deans of the faculty, the Committee on Regional Studies, and latterly the University’s Committee...

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Prologue

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pp. 1-4

War at sea had shaped the contours of the Atlantic since 1500, and in the two years between 1808 and 1810 of Spain’s “first” empire it was decisive. The sea linked the plantation economy of the Caribbean and the silver mines of New Spain to Europe: it was the maritime highway for...

Part One: Metropole

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1. A National Drama, Act II: Aranjuez

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pp. 7-44

During the winter of 1807–1808, the events of the previous October cast a lengthening shadow over the Iberian Peninsula. As the internal political crisis precipitated by the Escorial affair (October 1807) deepened, the consequences of the Treaty of Fontainebleau (1807) took shape in the occupation of Portugal and key points in Spain between the Ebro and the Pyrenees...

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2. Bayonne

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pp. 45-74

There is no evidence of either mediation or arbitration of the claims between the Spanish and French parties—the Bourbon royal family and Napoleon Bonaparte—gathered at Bayonne. In fact, aside from the final documents signed there in early May and the letters exchanged between the...

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3. Dos de Mayo: Insurgency

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pp. 75-93

While the dynastic substitution or formal renunciation of the Bourbons at Bayonne may be seen as an epilogue in which French and Spanish policy makers achieved their separate and contradictory ends, it was also the prelude to a new drama opening on a far broader stage. On 2 May, when Talleyrand...

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4. Sevilla: The Struggle for Supremacy in Spain and New Spain

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pp. 94-128

Competition for hegemony in the metropole in 1808, after the collapse of the Bourbon government that entrusted the monarquía to France under Bonaparte at Bayonne, had more than the political dimension of filling the void of a national government. Many were the dimensions: as far as...

Part Two: Colony

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5. A Contested Authority

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pp. 131-161

Between mid-March and early May 1808, Spain’s monarchy and imperial system entered a period of crisis not experienced perhaps since the comunero violence of the early sixteenth century. Six weeks of political upheaval beginning with Spain’s first modern golpe de estado at Aranjuez seemed to...

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6. New Spain’s Cuban Counterpoint

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pp. 162-190

Nothing—neither Iturrigaray’s intervention in Mexico City’s Consulado elections nor Madrid’s inquiry (pushed by Iturrigaray) into the Consulado’s financial operations and influence-buying via avería management—more effectively unified the consulados of the colony’s capital and major port, Mexico City...

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7. The Powerful and Insecure: Mexico City’s Almaceneros, 1808

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pp. 191-213

In 1808 merchants born and raised in Spain constituted in Mexico City and Veracruz the wealthiest and most influential interest group outside the colonial governmental apparatus. Economic and political leverage that merchants had utilized and still utilized left them as exposed as the oidores...

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8. The Audiencia de México, Iturrigaray, and Talamantes

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pp. 214-239

Among the ministros togados (eight oidores, four alcaldes, three fiscales) forming New Spain’s high court or Audiencia in 1808, the almaceneros of Mexico City could rely upon a hard core to block formation of a local or colonial congress by Viceroy Iturrigaray and the predominantly criollo Mexico City Ayuntamiento. Three among the oidores—ministros togados Aguirre, Bataller...

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9. Melchor Talamantes: Criollo Exponent of New Spain’s Interests

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pp. 240-255

In the course of ransacking Talamantes’s rooms in the morning following the coup of 15 September, Mexico City’s security forces found among his spare furnishings manuscripts, periodicals, and books.1 Obviously he had been ruminating about the extraordinarily disturbing news of Spanish, European...

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10. Sevilla’s Comisionados and Mexico City’s Juntas

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pp. 256-295

On 26 August the two representatives (comisionados) of Sevilla’s self-styled Junta Suprema debarked at Veracruz two months after sailing from Cadiz, authorized to present to Viceroy Iturrigaray and the principal corporate bodies of the colonial establishment a request for recognition as interim...

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11. Viceroy Iturrigaray: Criollos and a Viceroy’s Grand Design

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pp. 296-324

Teniente General José de Iturrigaray y Aróstegui, viceroy of New Spain (1803–1808), typified many of the militar-bureaucrats formed in the age of Charles III. Both parents were of the gentry or petty nobility of the Basque...

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12. Anatomy of a Colonial Coup d’État: Mexico City, 1808

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pp. 325-358

The coalescence of Iturrigaray’s grand design to modify the colonial order in the interest of New Spain’s landowning and mining proprietors came in stages and conditioned the response of traditionalists in government and business. In the crisis of the old regime in 1808, immunization of the formal...

Part Three: Metropole

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13. Junta de Sevilla, Consejo de Castilla, and the Genesis of the Junta Central

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pp. 361-377

Sevilla’s claim to sovereignty over Spain and America, specious at the time comisionados Jabat and Jaúregui left Cadiz for Veracruz and Mexico City in late spring of 1808, was further belied as events unfolded on both sides of the Atlantic. Faced with the refusal of other juntas in the peninsula to accept...

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14. Junta Central: Ideologues and Ideology

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pp. 378-402

Although the conservative aspirations of the Junta de Sevilla and Consejo de Castilla concerning the new Junta Central would prove well founded, and Miguel Artola’s assessment that it opened an era in Spanish history essentially correct, the social origins and outlook of the thirty-five men in this new sovereign body were hardly revolutionary or even antitraditional, and...

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15. Junta Central versus Junta de Sevilla: The Colonial Question

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pp. 403-429

As the Junta Central began to organize a government, examine the credentials of its membership, and create and then instruct committees about policy and collaboration with portfolio ministers, the Junta de Sevilla refused to relinquish its claim for control—over regional, financial, commercial, judicial, and military affairs—above all, over the colonies that recognized...

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16. Financing the Resistance in Spain

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pp. 430-453

The general destabilizing factor over the last two decades of the Spanish empire in America was the two great wars in which Spain supported France against England, first between 1796 and 1801 and again between 1804 and 1808, after a prosperous interim in which “la industria, la agricultura y la mayor parte de nuestros capitales han sido el resultado de algunos años...

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17. Dissolution of the Junta Central

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pp. 454-465

One year after its creation at Aranjuez, the Junta Central’s authority, never substantial, was tenuous. Created in the euphoria following victory at Bailén and withdrawal of the French from Madrid, it was the product of conflict, not consensus. In August 1808 Andalusian dominance was viewed as the major threat confronting fernandista Spain. The Consejo de Castilla, its...

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18. Regencia and Junta de Cadiz

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pp. 466-489

At the beginning of February 1810, the situation in Spain was desperate. French troops entered Sevilla, whose Junta, reassuming its claim to sovereignty, ordered municipal bodies to accept French occupation and recognize the government of José I at Madrid. The Junta de Sevilla’s presidente, Francisco Saavedra, before abandoning Sevilla for nearby Cadiz, ordered...

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19. The Pivotal Orden of 17 May 1810

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pp. 490-528

Magnifying the demands of Havana’s planters in 1809–1810 was the added insistence of other export interests—producer and merchant—at Caracas, Cartagena, and Buenos Aires on modifying Spain’s transatlantic commercial system. In part this was the result of the late developing bipolar colonial...

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20. Colonial Insurrection and the Call for the Cortes

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pp. 529-552

In retrospect it is ironic that on the day members of the Consulado de Cadiz condemned the 17 May decree, insisting on its formal repudiation by the Regencia and immediate exemplary punishment of its promoters, in London Spain’s two envoys examined a manifesto just incoming from Caracas...

Part Four: Colony

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21. An Eroding Colonial System: New Spain, 1808–1810

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pp. 555-571

Explaining why colonial systems collapse is as complicated as explaining why colonialism may endure for centuries. The complexity reflects the beguiling strength of colonial structures until the final moments of their existence. It is left to later analysis to reveal how consensus and the monopoly of force which maintained it were already profoundly weakened, undermined...

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22. Fissures in the Colonial Elite: Merchants

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pp. 572-586

No colonial elite forms a seamless web of undivided hegemony. Intra-elite conflicts invariably flourish especially in a colonial system of high-value exports, a relatively large and coercible labor reserve, and growing demand for imported finished goods. For decades prior to 1808 there were rifts dividing entrepreneurial constellations in New Spain’s commercial and mining sectors...

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23. Fire under the Embers: Between Preemptive Coup and Insurrection

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pp. 587-613

Archbishop Lizana’s inability to bring the Consulado’s factions to reason together, or to modify the Audiencia’s unconditional backing of golpistas within the Consulado, points up the arrogance among the European colonialists in high colonial administration and the merchant community in Mexico City. To government officials after September 1808, the merchant...

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24. The Regencia’s Comisionados and Bishop-Elect Abad y Queipo

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pp. 614-630

When politically astute Blanco White, editor of the voice of Spanish reformers, El Español, commented from the safety of London about events in Andalusia in January and February of 1810 that “no hubo hombre de medianas luces que no la [independencia] tubiera por segura en la dispersion...

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25. Oprimidos y Opresores

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pp. 631-652

Doubtless Abad y Queipo’s defense of the interests of small-scale labradores and tradespeople, his fears of the social implications of tributo collection, and his criticism of Spanish merchant monopolists drew upon both his substantial fund of economic data and decades-long experience in probably...

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26. “No Hay Más Recurso Que Ir a Coger Gachupines”

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pp. 653-660

Writing to the Regencia at Cadiz at the end of May 1810, Abad y Queipo extrapolated from his grasp of the reality of Valladolid and the Bajío when he foretold a colonial insurrection. His and the Regencia’s optic differed; Abad y Queipo interpreted provincial conditions in an area he knew well and firsthand, while metropolitan officials viewed the colony of New Spain...

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Conclusion

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pp. 661-664

Like other west European outreaches into the western Atlantic, Spain’s was structured on control of territory to exploit natural resources, wherever possible native peoples, and trade. An ideology, Catholicism, justified overseas occupation along with administrative officers, courts of law, and small armed units locally recruited. Control and communications, security and...

Notes

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pp. 665-758

Bibliography

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pp. 759-772

Index

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pp. 773-795