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The Governorate of the Río de la Plata (1549−1776) (Spanish: Gobernación del Río de la Plata, pronounced [goβeɾnaˈsjon ðel ˈri.o ðe la ˈplata] ) was one of the governorates of the Spanish Empire. It was created in 1549 by Spain in the area around the Río de la Plata.
It was at first simply a renaming of the New Andalusia Governorate and included all of the land between 470 and 670 leagues south of the mouth of the Río Santiago along the Pacific coast. After 1617, Paraguay was separated under a separate administration (Asunción had been the capital of the governorate since Juan de Ayolas.)
After the founding of the Viceroyalty of Peru in 1542, the governorate was since its birth under its authority until the formation of the independent Viceroyalty of the Rio de la Plata in 1776. Similarly, it was under the jurisdiction of the Royal Audience of Charcas until the formation of the independent Royal Audience of Buenos Aires from 1661 to 1671 and after 1783.
The Viceroyalty of the Río de la Plata was the last to be organized and also the shortest-lived of the Viceroyalties of the Spanish Empire in America.
Pedro de Mendoza y Luján was a Spanish conquistador, soldier and explorer, and the first adelantado of New Andalusia.
The Sierra de la Plata was a mythical source of silver in the interior of South America. The legend began in the early 16th century when castaways from the Juan Díaz de Solís expedition heard indigenous stories of a mountain of silver in an inland region ruled by the so-called White King. The first European to lead an expedition in search of it was the castaway Aleixo Garcia, who crossed nearly the entire continent to reach the Andean altiplano. On his way back to the coast, Garcia died in an ambush by indigenous tribespeople in Paraguay, but survivors brought precious metals back to corroborate their story. The legend inspired other expeditions, all of which ended in failure.
Banda Oriental, or more fully Banda Oriental del Uruguay, was the name of the South American territories east of the Uruguay River and north of Río de la Plata that comprise the modern nation of Uruguay; the modern state of Brazil Rio Grande do Sul; and some of Santa Catarina, Brazil. It was the easternmost territory of the Viceroyalty of the Río de la Plata.
Juan de Garay (1528–1583) was a Spanish conquistador. Garay's birthplace is disputed. Some say it was in the Castile city of Junta de Villalba de Losa, while others argue he was born in the area of Orduña. There's no birth certification whatsoever, though Juan De Garay regarded himself as somebody from Biscay. He served under the Crown of Castille, in the Viceroyalty of Peru. He was governor of Asunción and founded a number of cities in present-day Argentina, many near the Paraná River area, including the second foundation of Buenos Aires, in 1580.
Juan Ortiz de Zárate (c. 1521 Orduña, Biscay – 1575 Asunción,. was a Spanish Basque explorer and conquistador. He journeyed to the Americas as a teenager, where he took part in the conquest of Peru under Diego de Almagro.
Hernando Arias de Saavedra, commonly known as Hernandarias, was a soldier and politician of criollo ancestry. He was the first person born in the Americas to become a governor of a European colony in the New World, serving two terms as governor of Governorate of the Río de la Plata, 1597–1599 and 1602–1609, and one of the Governorate of Paraguay 1615–1617.
Domingo Martínez de Irala was a Spanish Basque conquistador.
Juan de Salazar y Espinosa (1508–1560) was a Spanish explorer, founder of the Paraguayan city of Asunción. Born in the city of Espinosa de los Monteros in Burgos, Spain, not much is known about his early life.
The Real Audiencia de Buenos Aires, were two audiencias, or highest courts, of the Spanish crown, which resided in Buenos Aires. The authority of the first extended to the territory of the Governorate of the Río de la Plata and operated from 1661 to 1671. The second began to function in 1783 and had as its territory the areas of the Viceroyalty of the Río de la Plata not covered by the Audiencia de Charcas, that is to say the intendancies of Buenos Aires, Córdoba del Tucumán, Salta del Tucumán and Paraguay. In 1810, after the May Revolution, it was suspended, and in 1813 the Assembly of the Year XIII permanently disbanded it. The Audiencias resided in the city's cabildo building.
Ulrich Schmidl or Schmidel was a German Landsknecht, conquistador, explorer, chronicler and councilman. Schmidl was, beside Hans Staden, one of the few Landsknechts who wrote down their experiences.
La Argentina is a 1602 poem written by Martín del Barco Centenera. The full name is Argentina y conquista del Río de la Plata, con otros acaecimientos de los reinos del Perú, Tucumán y estado del Brasil.
Francisco Pérez de Burgos (1558-1617) was a Spanish jurist, military man, merchant and politician, who had a preponderant role during the colonial period of Argentina, where he worked as a public and government notary of the city of Buenos Aires.
León Ortiz de Rozas was a Spanish military and politician. He served as Commander in the military expeditions against the Indians during the Viceroyalty of the Río de la Plata.
Juan de Garay y Becerra (1558–1638) was a Spanish nobleman, who served during the Viceroyalty of Peru as alcalde and lieutenant governor of Santa Fe (Argentina).
Martín Suárez de Toledo (1520-1584) was a Spanish nobleman and conquistador. He served as interim Governor of the Río de la Plata and Paraguay.
Juan Ramírez de Velasco was a Spanish conquistador of Chile and Argentina. Founder of the province of La Rioja.
Roberto Briche (c.1510-1560s) was an English sailor and conquistador, who took part of Pedro de Mendoza's expedition to the Rio de la Plata.
Baltazar García Ros was a Navarrese-Spanish soldier and administrator. He was maestre de campo and interim governor of the Governorate of Paraguay from 1706 to 1707 and governor of the Governorate of the Río de la Plata from 1715 to 1717. During his career, he campaigned against the indigenous Charrua, Yaro, and Bohán people; the Portuguese; and the comunero rebels of Paraguay.
Fuerte de Buenos Aires was the main Spanish fortress of the city of Buenos Aires during the colonial period.