Spanish-Portuguese Conflict over Colonia del Sacramento, 1776-1777

According to the Treaty of Tordesillas (1494), all of Uruguay and considerable parts of coastal southern Brazil were allocated to Spain. However, Spain treated Latin South America for a long time as a single administrative unit, administered from Lima, and neglected the La Plata region. Only in 1776 was the Viceroyalty of La Plata, with capital at Buenos Aires created.
During the years of Spanish neglect, the Portuguese had encroached into territory allocated by the Treaty of Tordesillas to Spain; the southernmost Portuguese settlement was Colonia del Sacramento, located in modern Uruguay, founded in 1680, was occupied by the Spanish, returned in 1683. Colonia was abandoned from 1705 to 1715. Spanish forces had occupied Colonia del Sacramento a second time in 1724, but Portuguese administration continued.
The new administration of the Viceroyalty of Buenos Aires, in the year of her creation, sent a force which again occupied the city and created the province of Banda Oriental (the eastern bank, of the La Plata, that is). The Portuguese administration in Brazil did not retaliate; in 1777 the Treaty of San Ildefonso was signed, which confirmed the Spanish claim over Colonia del Sacramento and over the territory of modern Uruguay; it also fixed the borders on Portuguese Brazil.

Spanish-Portugiesischer Krieg um Colonia, 1776-1777 (Spanish-Portuguese War over Colonia 1776-1777), from Kriege der Neuzeit, in German, two-liner
DOCUMENTS List of Portuguese Governors of Nova Colonia do Sacramento, from World Statesmen

This page is part of World History at KMLA
First posted on March 17th 2004, last revised on November 19th 2004

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