Antonio nariño

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Antonio de la Santísima Concepción Nariño y
Álvarez (Santa Fé de Bogotá 1765-1824 Villa de Leyva)
was an ideological precursor and one of the early political
and military leaders of theindependence movement in
Colombia, then known as New Granada.
Early political activity
Nariño was born to an aristocratic family. He was always
seeking knowledge and greatly admired the politicalideologies of the leaders of the American Revolution. In his
impressive library there was even a portrait of Benjamin
Franklin that hung above the mantle. In his youth, Nariño
was a strong influence amongstthe progressive young
people of Bogotá. He was the host to many secret political
gatherings which purpose was to discuss the need for
independence. Nariño was always one of the most out-
spokenand articulate participant at these meetings, which
gained him much admiration.
In 1794, Nariño procured a copy of the "Declaration of the
Rights of Man" which was being distributed by the FrenchAssembly. He translated the "Declaration of the Rights of
Man" from its original French into Spanish and printed
several copies from his own private press. He then
circulated these translatedpamphlets among his politically
like-minded friends. Copies of the pamphlet were
distributed to all corners of the continent and created a
stirring in the political mentalities of the time. Thegovernment soon discovered the material and any copy that
was found was burned. Nariño was sentenced to ten years
imprisonment in Africa for his leading role in the political
group and was exiled fromSouth America. Nariño had
previously worked as a tax collector ("Recaudador de
diezmos") and was also accused of fraud resulting from
this activity.
However, when the ship landed in Spain, Nariñoescaped
from his captors and later went to France and England,
where he continued his work supporting the revolution in
South America. He found his way back to New Granada
where the authorities...
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