Colombia en ingles

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Colombian history


Archaeology and history of Colombia /Pic. mario_carvajal

Archeology and History

Colombia has a long history going back before the Spanish Conquest, and there are several sites that bear testimony to its fascinating Indian past. In San Agustín, in the southern part of the Colombian Andes, monoliths of volcanic stone representing gods andwarriors are preserved, and nearby, in the area of Tierradentro, the visitor can enter a complex of underground burial chambers.

From one of the bays of Tayrona National Park, on the Caribbean coast, you can ascend the foothills of the Sierra, following a path of stone slabs that leads to the ruins of Pueblito, a settlement built by the Tayrona people, one of the most advanced cultures ofpre-Hispanic America, which left an invaluable inheritance of objects fashioned in gold that can be admired, together with a wealth of articles from different cultures, in the different branches of the Gold Museum and other museums in different towns around the country.

Colombia has a valuable past in colonial architecture and culture that is preserved in many towns and villages


Over twelve cultures inhabited Colombian territory before the Spanish Conquest and left vestiges of the surprising level of development they had attained. Towns and stone paths, enigmatic statues, burial urns and impressive gold and pottery objects, constitute part of an inheritance that allows us to learn about their beliefs and way of life.

The Muisca Indians were farmers on thehighland plains that they inhabited. They were excellent goldsmiths and potters who left invaluable treasures. The myth of El Dorado that inspired the Conquest of the continent, had its origin in the investiture of the new Cacique, who covered in gold dust, went out on a raft towards the center of the lake of Guatavita accompanied by his priests.

Pottery and gold working was also notable among theQuimbaya, Sinu, Tayrona and Calima tribes. Their work can be admired in Bogota at the Gold Museum of the Banco de la Republica, the Archeological Museum Casa del Marqués de San Jorge and the National Museum; at the Museum of Quimbaya Culture in Armenia; at the Museum of the Tayrona Culture in Santa Marta and at the Museum of Sinú Culture in Cartagena. You can buy perfect reproductions in specializedstores made with the very same techniques employed by the cultures that created them.

La Candelaria district, Bogotá /Pic. trevino

Colonial Colombia

Towards the third decade of the 16th century, the founding of the main towns commenced. Land was distributed among the conquerors, the exploitation of the salt, gold and emerald mines was organized and Christianity was established.Coexistence between the Spanish colonizers and their African slaves gave rise to a process of mestizaje.

Santa Cruz de Mompox is just a few hours away from Cartagena de Indias, a port on the Magdalena River whose privileged location made it an important trading post and one of the stateliest towns of the period. This is evident in its constructions, especially religious buildings such as thechurch of Santa Barbara or non-religious ones such as the Pinillos School, whose architecture reflects the European conventions of the time, little understood perhaps by local craftsmen but which produced enchanting and harmonious lines.

The capital of the Spanish Viceroyalty was established in Bogota, home of the government and ecclesiastic hierarchy. In the barrio of La Candelaria and adjacentareas, old mansions and churches are preserved that house their treasures. Many have been turned into museums and churches where you can admire the artistic and cultural expressions of our forebears.

Popayan and Tunja preserve a colonial sector full of charm: their churches are adorned with baroque reredoses clad in gilt while the cities’ narrow streets, quiet squares and stately houses give one...
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