Juan Idiarte Borda

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Juan Bautista Idiarte Borda y Soumastre
Juan Idiarte Borda.png
17th President of Uruguay
In office
March 21, 1894 – August 25, 1897
Preceded by Duncan Stewart
Succeeded by Juan Lindolfo Cuestas
Personal details
Born April 20, 1844
Died August 25, 1897 (aged 53)
Nationality Uruguayan
Political party Colorado Party
Spouse(s) Matilde Baños
Children Celia,María Esther

Juan Bautista Idiarte Borda y Soumastre (April 20, 1844 – August 25, 1897) was the 17th President of Uruguay. He is the only Uruguayan president to be assassinated.


Originating from the Uruguayan department of Soriano, which he was to represent in Uruguay's chamber of deputies, Idiarte was a member of the Colorado Party, which dominated the country's politics for many years.

President of Uruguay[edit]

On March 21, 1894 Duncan Stewart, interim President of Uruguay stepped down, and Idiarte replaced him in that office.

Strife on various fronts[edit]

Idiarte's presidency was beset by a number of severe difficulties which found their origins in a host of commercial, ideological and personality issues, in the background of Uruguay's intermittent Civil War. In addition, the nature of the ruling Colorado Party of the period was seen as particularly fractious.

Public works[edit]

Idiarte's term of office, however, was also characterized by a program of public works. This included the development of the Port of Montevideo and the establishment of a national Bank.


On August 25, 1897,[1] Idiarte was assassinated by a man named Avelino Arredondo,[2] who had been erroneously identified several months earlier (in El Día, edited by José Batlle y Ordóñez) as a would-be assassin during a previous incident. While Idiarte's family warned him of an assassination plot on the part of his party enemies, and although the assassin was a known strong supporter of Batlle, the latter successfully maintained a plausible deniability in connection with the crime, the only instance to date of a presidential assassination in the history of Uruguay.

Subsequently, the reputation of Idiarte was greatly overshadowed by that of José Batlle y Ordóñez, who later became a longserving President.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Henderson, James D.; Delpar, Helen; Brungardt, Maurice Philip, eds. (2000). A Reference Guide to Latin American History. M.E. Sharpe. p. 167. ISBN 9781563247446. 
  2. ^ "The President of Uruguay Assassinated By a Youth". The Sydney Morning Herald. August 27, 1897. p. 5. 
Political offices
Preceded by
Duncan Stewart
President of Uruguay
Succeeded by
Juan Lindolfo Cuestas