Yanes, Francisco Javier (1776–1842)

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Yanes, Francisco Javier (1776–1842)

Francisco Javier Yanes (b. 12 May 1776; d. 17 June 1842), political activist and historian of the Venezuelan independence movement. Yanes was born in Cuba but moved to Venezuela at a very young age. He studied law at the University of Caracas. He was connected with the independence movement from its start. Yanes was a member of the Sociedad Patriótica de Caracas and of the Constituent Congress of 1811; he was also a censor at El Publicista, the official publication of the Congress. He left the country at the fall of the First Republic in 1812, returning in 1813. The Congress of Angostura designated him a member of the Supreme Court of Justice of Venezuela in 1819 and in 1820 as president of the Court of Almirantazgo.

With the creation of Gran Colombia, Yanes was appointed a member of the Superior Court of Justice of Venezuela (1821), which was subordinate to the government in Bogotá. He worked on the publication of the periodical El Observador Caraqueño (1824–1825) with Cristóbal Mendoza, historian, journalist, and first president of Venezuela (1811), with whom he also collaborated on an important collection of twenty-two volumes of documents concerning Venezuela's emancipation [Francisco Javier Yanes and Cristóbal Mendoza, Colección de documentos relativos a la vida pública del Libertador de Colombia y del Perú, Simón Bolívar, 22 vols. (1983)]. Yanes was a member of the Sociedad Económica de Amigos del País (1829) and of the Constituent Congress of 1830. After 1830 he devoted himself to judicial activities and to his private life. His personal archive can be found in the National Academy of History in Caracas.

See alsoVenezuela, Congresses of 1811, 1830, and 1864; Venezuela, Organizations: Economic Society of the Friends of the Country.


No biography of Yanes exists, nor is there any work concerning his intellectual career. However, several renditions of his own works include valuable biographical information: Francisco Javier Yanes, Relación documentada de los principales sucesos ocurridos en Venezuela desade que se declaró estado independiente hasta el año de 1821, 2 vols. (1943); Compendio de la historia de Venezuela, desde su descubrimiento y conquista hasta que se declaró estado independiente (1944); and Manual político del venezolano (1959).

Additional Bibliography

Cañizales Verde, Francisco. Francisco Javier Yanes: Teniente Justicia Mayor. Barquisimeto, Venezuela: Editorial Textos, 1997.

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Yanes, Francisco Javier (1776–1842)

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