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History of Arequipa

Historia de Arequipa
Exclusive travel tips for your destination – Arequipa

Arequipa is the capital and mayor of the city of Arequipa, is the seat of the Constitutional Court and the “Legal Capital of Peru” and serves twice as the seat of the Peruvian government in 1835 and in 1886 as the capital of the Republic.

The city was founded on August 15, 1540, under the name of “Beautiful Villa of Our Lady of the Assumption” in the name of the Marquis Don Francisco Pizarro and on September 22, 1541, the monarch Carlos V in Royal Decree orders that the call «City of Arequipa». This really was a refoundation and Europeanization of the name, because there was already a city that the Incas called “Ari-Quepay” or Arequipa. The change of name only obeys to the transculturation of the towns.

In the viceregal period acquired importance and importance, which was recognized by the Spanish Crown through the titles that are granted such as “Very Noble and Very Loyal” and “Fidelísima.”

In the republican history of Peru the prominence of the city of Arequipa was and is gravitating, 6 it was the focus of popular, civic and democratic rebellions, and has also been the cradle of many outstanding intellectual, political and religious figures of the country.

Pre-Inca time

Until just before the emergence of the Inca Empire, there were some nomadic conglomerates in what is now the city of Arequipa. They lived dedicated to activities such as hunting, fishing and collecting local fruits, developing the domestication of some animals. auquenidos and initiating practical incipient sedentarization and agriculture.

Over time, after migratory processes within the region, the first settlements were established, many of them with connections to the sea, giving rise to the first communication channels, which increased the accessibility of the territory.

The valley of the Chili River, where the city of Arequipa would later settle, was crossed by important irrigation canals or ditches built in the pre-Inca and Inca times that allowed to cultivate the plains and the terraces developed on the flanks of the slopes of the river.

There were several communities that settled in the current settlement of the city of Arequipa as the Yarabayas, primitive people who settled in the “Traditional Neighborhood of San Lazaro”, another community were the Chimbas, who settled on the left bank of the river , that together with Collaguas communities developed an agrarian economy in the middle of the desert.

Inca time

Around 1170, the fourth Inca of Cuzco’s curacazgo, of the Hurin Cuzco dynasty, Mayta Cápac, stopped with his army in an uninhabited, but very pleasant valley, which he called “Ari-quepay” (let’s stay here), said Inca distributed lands among three thousand families, who founded the hamlets or towns of Yanahuara, Cayma, Tiabaya, Paucarpata, Socabaya, Characato, Chiguata and others.

Colonial period

Spanish Foundation of Arequipa (White City)

Colonial period
On August 15, 1540, the day of the Virgin of the Assumption, the Villa de la Asunción of Our Lady of the Beautiful Valley of Arequipa was founded by Lieutenant Governor Garcí Manuel de Carbajal, on the left bank of the Chili River.

The founding act of the “Villa de la Asunción de Nuestra Senora del Valle Hermoso de Arequipa” says the following:

“And after the aforementioned, in the Arequipa Valley, on the fifteenth day of the month of August of one million and five hundred and forty years the very magnificent Mr. Garcí Manuel de Carbajal lieutenant and captain for the illustrious Mr. Marqués Don Francisco Pizarro governor in these provinces by his majesty, in compliance with the order of said governor, he went through the said valley of Arequipa, and the most convenient and healthy seat was informed, and of less damage to the natives, and having seen him as he said, said that in the name of his majesty of the said Mr. Don Francisco Pizarro and in his real name, he founded and founded the said Villa Hermosa in the Arequipa Valley, in the part of Collasuyo, where the Señoría sent, above the river ravine, the said valley; and his mercy on the cross in the place that is designated for church, and so he put the pillory in the plaza of the said town, what he said he did and did in the name of his majesty and the said lord governs nador in his real name as said is by possession, and so done his mercy ordered to proclaim and was proclaiming that the inhabitants and other people who have plots in the said beautiful village the people and build their houses in them within six months fulfilled first following the sentences that the governor sends and ansi was publicly proclaimed by you Pedro Ires, public pregonero and his mercy signed him by his name being witnesses Hernando de Silva and Hernando de Torres aldermen of Juan de la Torre mayor and Luis de León e Father Rodrigo Bravo and Fray Bartolomé de Ojeda and Father Fray Diego Manso and Diego de Hernandez and many other people who were at his mercy signed him as said is – Garcí Manuel de Carbajal – all of which is said to have happened before me – Alfonso de Luque public scribe. “

Founding act of Arequipa

Once the foundation of Arequipa was carried out, and after the first houses were built, he was appointed as the first mayor to direct the destiny of the city to the same founder, Juan de la Torre and Díaz Chacón, who received two fanegas of land. to make your house and the stables.

Later, Viceroy D. Francisco Álvarez de Toledo, who was in the city making a general visit to the territory of his jurisdiction, granted the city, by decree of August 20, 1571, the title of “Very noble and very loyal “, by virtue of their merits and services to the real cause.

The title was confirmed by Felipe II “with many more honors” in two cedulas: one dated in Badajoz on September 20, 1580 and the other in Madrid on January 28, 1594, which does not seem very accurate, since in that as in other cedulas, reference was made only to that title, which Arequipa already had. The card of Badajoz contains praise for the midwives of this city for the valuable donation they made of their jewelry in order to alleviate the situation of the Royal Treasury.

Republican era

The territory corresponding to the Intendency of Arequipa was designated as a department by decree of May 26, 1822. The first patriotic military contingents that arrived in the region were commanded by Colonel Guillermo Miller, who occupied Camaná on December 26, 1822 and managed the enthusiastic adhesion of its inhabitants.

Republican era
View of Portal del Regocijo, now known as Portal de Flores, located in the eastern part of the Plaza de Armas of Arequipa in a photograph taken in the year 1880.

The Constituents of 1822 – 1823, 1827 – 1828 and 1833 – 1834 had Arequipeño as president and Javier de Luna Pizarro as “Lauretan”. During the government of Bolivar, after the victory of Ayacucho, the city was an active center against the propagation of the dictatorial powers of the Liberator. The lawyers Manuel Cuadros, Evaristo Gómez Sánchez, Gualberto Valvivia, Andrés Martínez and the merchant Mariano Llosa Benavides opposed publicly and emphatically the Bolivarian lifetime constitution. For that reason, Cuadros, Gómez Sánchez and Luna Pizarro, representatives for Arequipa in the Congress of 1826, were re-elected almost by acclamation for the Constituent Congress of 1827 – 1828. Fruit of the activity of the Lauretana Academy was the founding of the National College of the American Independence (March 4, 1827, directed by Gaulberto Valdivia), and the National University of San Agustín (created by decree of General Antonio Gutiérrez de la Fuente on June 2, 1827 and installed on November 11, 1828 ), whose first rector was José Fernández Dávila.

Between 1833 and 1834, the French writer Flora Tristán, daughter of the Peruvian diplomat Mariano Tristán y Moscoso, visited Arequipa in search of her father’s family. In 1838, he published in Paris the memories of his trip under the title Pilgrimages of an outcast, a book in which he describes in great detail the reality of Arequipa at that time.

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