Juan de Ercilla


"cacique del estado defensores..."

A soldier and a chronicler, Ercilla wrote the first epic of the Americas. In La Araucana, he writes of the war between the Spaniards and the Araucanos en Chile. Using a Rennassentist style, Ercilla evokes classical images and uses them in his depiction of the war, and his vision of the Indians. Ercilla relies on many stereotypes about the natives, namely their natural bravery. He wanted to enhance the Indian, not due to his admiration for them, but for the sake of the Spaniards' fame. A bad enemy could not make a good winner.

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