Battle of Cerro Corá

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Battle of Cerro Corá
Part of the Paraguayan War
Image-CerroCora DesdeCerroMuralla.jpg
Landscape of Cerro Corá (Amambay, Paraguay), place of the end of the Paraguayan War, as seen from the top of Cerro Muralla
Date 1 March 1870
Location Cerro Corá, Paraguay
Result Brazilian victory:
Belligerents
Commanders and leaders
Paraguay Francisco Solano López  
Paraguay Domingo Francisco Sánchez  
Empire of Brazil José Antônio Correia da Câmara
Strength
450 troops (200 personal guard of Solano López) 4,000 troops
Casualties and losses
250-299 dead 155 dead

The battle of Cerro Corá was fought on 1 March 1870 on a hill-surrounded valley of the same name, in the north-east of Paraguay. This was the last battle in the Paraguayan War.

Estimatives claim that Francisco Solano López's personal guard had from 100 to 250 soldiers. Also present were a group of women, led by Lopez's mistress Eliza Lynch. This group was composed of the soldier's wives, daughters, and others, who supported the soldiers called "Las Residentas". The Brazilian troops were composed of a battalion of about 4,000 men. At the banks of the Aquidaban River Solano Lopez's troops were surrounded and defeated.

Lopez was surprised by Brazilian troops and killed by Brazilian Imperial Army Grenadier Corporal José Francisco Lacerda, better known as Chico Diabo, as he attempted to swim to safety across the Aquidaban River.

Aftermath[edit]

After the Brazilian forces killed López, they headed towards the civilians in order to capture them. López and Eliza Lynch's eldest son Juan Francisco, who had been promoted to Colonel during the war and was 15 years old, was with her. The Brazilian officers told him to surrender, and upon replying "Un coronel Paraguayo nunca se rinde" (A Paraguayan Colonel never surrenders)[1] he was shot and killed by the allied soldiers. At this, Lynch, after jumping and covering her son's body, exclaimed "Esta es la civilizacion que han prometido?" (Is this the civilization you have promised?)[2] (making a reference to the allies' claim that they intended to free Paraguay from a tyrant and deliver freedom and civilization to the nation). She then buried both López and her son with her bare hands before being taken as prisoner.[2]

Cultural impact[edit]

Cerro Cora is a 1978 Paraguayan film set on the last days of the Paraguayan War.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Bareiro Saguier, Ruben; Villagra Marsal, Carlos. ‘’Testimonios de la Guerra Grande. Muerte del Mariscal López. Tomo II’’, Editorial Servilibro. Asuncion, Paraguay, 2007. Page 106.
  2. ^ a b Bareiro. Tomo I. Page 106

Coordinates: 22°39′8″S 56°1′31″W / 22.65222°S 56.02528°W / -22.65222; -56.02528