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Márquez, José Ignacio de (1793–1880)

Márquez, José Ignacio de (1793–1880)

José Ignacio de Márquez (b. 7 September 1793; d. 21 March 1880), president of New Granada (1837–1840). Born in Boyacá, Márquez received a law degree from the Colegio de San Bartolomé in Bogotá at age twenty. In 1821 he served in the Congress of Cúcuta and was elected presiding officer. In 1830–1831, Márquez served as finance secretary, and his 1831 Memoria de hacienda stands as the classic statement of protectionist thought in nineteenth-century Colombia. From March to October 1832, Márquez served as acting president pending the return to New Granada of Francisco de Paula Santander, whereupon he assumed the vice presidency. In 1837 he was elected president by the Congress after a bitterly divisive three-way contest against José María Obando and Vicente Azuero. Although Márquez was a sound administrator with some mildly progressive ideas, his presidency was poisoned by the rivalry between his ministerial grouping and the defeated progresistas gathered around Santander. Márquez's purge of progresista officials further exacerbated political tensions. In 1839 a rebellion erupted in the southwestern Pasto region, initially directed against a Márquez decree on the suppression of small convents, but which soon came under the leadership of Obando. Throughout 1840 other regional rebellions, known collectively as the War of the Supremes and led by quasi-retired military men and disgruntled local elites, snowballed into a major crisis for the Márquez regime, especially after Santander's death in May 1840 removed a major brake on progresista intrigues. On 7 October 1840, after receiving news of a government defeat at Polonia (near Socorro in the northeast), Márquez temporarily stepped down from the presidency—ostensibly for health reasons—but resurfaced in Popayán two weeks later, rallying government forces. Márquez never returned to office, but by early 1842 the rebellions were defeated. He later served as representative for Tunja (1842–1845), interior secretary (1845–1846), and senator for Bogotá (1847–1850).

See alsoWar of the Supremes .


Carlos Cuervo Márquez, Vida del doctor José Ignacio de Márquez, 2 vols. (1917).

Additional Bibliography

Carrizosa Argáez, Enrique. Linajes y bibliografías de los gober-nantes de nuestra nación, 1830–1990. Bogotá, Colombia: Instituto Colombiano de Cultura Hispánica, 1990.

                                           Richard Stoller

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