Manuel Oribe

This article is about the Uruguayan politician. For the obese Mexican man, see Manuel Uribe.
This name uses Spanish naming customs: the first or paternal family name is Oribe and the second or maternal family name is Viana.
Manuel Oribe
2nd Constitutional President of Uruguay
In office
March 1, 1835  October 24, 1838
Preceded by Carlos Anaya
Succeeded by Gabriel Antonio Pereira
Personal details
Born (1792-08-26)August 26, 1792
Montevideo, Uruguay
Died November 12, 1857(1857-11-12) (aged 65)
Montevideo, Uruguay
Nationality Uruguayan
Political party White
Spouse(s) Agustina Contucci
Children 4
Profession Military
Religion Roman Catholicism

Manuel Ceferino Oribe y Viana (August 26, 1792 November 12, 1857) was the 2nd Constitutional president of Uruguay.


Manuel Oribe was the son of Captain Francisco Oribe and María Francisca Viana, a descendant of the first governor of Montevideo, José Joaquín de Viana. At the beginning of the revolution of independence in the Rio de la Plata he enlisted in the patriot ranks as a volunteer.

His baptism of fire took place in the battle of Cerrito, on December 31, 1812, during the Second Siege of Montevideo, feat of arms that ended in a victory for the Patriots. He took part alongside José Gervasio Artigas' resistance against the Luso-Brazilian invasion in 1816.

In late 1817, with Montevideo already fallen into the hands of the Luso-Brazilians, Oribe moved to Buenos Aires along with his brother Ignacio and Colonel Rufino Bauza, taking with him the Freedmen Battalion and an artillery battalion.

Rivalry with Rivera

The historian Francisco Bauza, son of Rufino Bauza, in his "Historia de la dominación española en el Uruguay" (1880-1882), argued that given the almost obsessive insistence of Artigas to name his favorite, Fructuoso Rivera, as military commander and the south of Río Negro to face the invasion, Rufino Bauza and Manuel Oribe would have come out against a situation that led to a violent exchange of words with Artigas, whose military situation was going out of hand.

The personal rivalry between Rivera and Oribe, which apparently dates of such events, the young officer decided to abandon his boss. Carlos Federico Lecor, commander of the occupying forces, offered no hindrance to the passage of eastern officials in Buenos Aires, even though he could not attract them to your cause. Rivera and his people were in the service of the invader Lusitanians.

First stay in Buenos Aires

In Buenos Aires, known by the certifying of stationery at the time, since 1819, Oribe, along with other easterns as Santiago Vazquez and residents who were equally opposed to the Brazilian Portuguese occupation and Artigas, have built a secret Masonic society, called the Society of the Eastern Knights, who waited at least until 1821, Cisplatin Congress to undertake a return to the, since then, called Cisplatina Province and begin work to reverse the situation.

Meanwhile, following the defeat of Artigas (and even before it) another section of the eastern elite had acceded to the occupants, accepting and in fact closely collaborating with the Portuguese. This is the only sector to be represented in Congress Cisplatin, 1821.

The occupation of the Banda Oriental and its transformation into "Cisplatina Province" by the Portuguese and Brazilian troops had resulted in additional fracture of the leading sectors, which has since lined up in two groups separated by the acceptance or rejection of that military presence:

Those groups would eventually become the Colorado and White party.

President of Uruguay

He served as President of Uruguay between 1835 and 1838.

Oribe was a big supporter of Juan Manuel de Rosas in Argentina, who in turn supported him.

A civil war, two simultaneous governments

In 1838 he was forced to resign by Fructuoso Rivera but started a rebel army and began a long civil war which lasted until 1851.

Oribe besieged the capital Montevideo for 8 long years (period known as Great Siege of Montevideo); he presided over the "Gobierno del Cerrito". At last Oribe was defeated in 1851 with help from Brazil and Argentine rebels who were against Rosas.

Later life

In 1857, Oribe and his family narrowly survived a shipwreck. For this reason he presented a golden crown as a gift to the image of the Virgin of the Thirty-Three.

Historical and political heritage

Oribe’s supporters became known as the Nationals or Blancos, while his opponents became the Colorados. These remained the main political factions until a third –the Frente Amplio– emerged in the late 20th century.

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Political offices
Preceded by
Carlos Anaya
President of Uruguay
Succeeded by
Gabriel Antonio Pereira
Preceded by
Fructuoso Rivera
President of Uruguay

Succeeded by
Joaquín Suárez
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