Skip to main content
Select Source:

caudillo

caudillo (kôdēl´yō Span. kouŧħē´yō), [Span.,= military strongman], type of South American political leader that arose with the 19th-century wars of independence. The first caudillos were often generals who, leading private armies, used their military might to achieve power in the newly independent states. Many were large landowners (hacendados) who sought to advance their private interests. They had in common military skill and a personal magnetism capable of commanding the allegiance of the masses. Caudillos were not associated with particular ideologies or political philosophies. Although they often began their career by opposing the oligarchy, they almost invariably became oligarchs and rarely upset the existing social order. In power, their authority was largely unchecked. Caudillos, or caudilhos in Portuguese-speaking Brazil, left their mark on the histories of all South American nations. Well-known caudillos were Juan Manuel de Rosas and Juan Facundo Quiroga in Argentina, Gabriel García Moreno in Ecuador, Antonio Lopez de Santa Ana and Porfirio Díaz in Mexico, and Rafael Leonidas Trujillo Molina in the Dominican Republic. In Spain, General Francisco Franco gave himself the title of el Caudillo, using the term literally without its disparaging connotations.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"caudillo." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. 23 Sep. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"caudillo." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. (September 23, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/caudillo

"caudillo." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Retrieved September 23, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/caudillo

caudillo

cau·dil·lo / kôˈdēlyō; -ˈdēō; kouˈdēˌ(y)ō/ • n. (pl. -los) (in Spanish-speaking regions) a military or political leader.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"caudillo." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Encyclopedia.com. 23 Sep. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"caudillo." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Encyclopedia.com. (September 23, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/caudillo-0

"caudillo." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Retrieved September 23, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/caudillo-0

caudillo

caudillo •bagnio •dal segno, jalapeño •cursillo, Trujillo •caudillo • El Niño • yo-yo

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"caudillo." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Encyclopedia.com. 23 Sep. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"caudillo." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Encyclopedia.com. (September 23, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/caudillo

"caudillo." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Retrieved September 23, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/caudillo