Mapuche warrior

Galvarino was a famous Mapuche warrior. In 1557, he fought in the Battle of Lagunillas against the an army of Spanish conquistadors.[1] The battle took place in Chile near the Bio Bio River.[2] He was taken prisoner along with one hundred and fifty other Mapuche. Some prisoners were condemned to amputation of their right hand and nose. Others like Galvarino had both hands cut off.[3] He was released and told to tell the Mapuche chief Caupolicán to surrender to stop more bloodshed.[2] He did just the opposite.[2] He urged the Mapuche to continue fighting against the Spanish invaders.[2] Less than a month later, on November 30, 1557, with knives fastened to both of his wrists he fought at the Battle of Millarupe.[2] It was supposed to be a surprise attack but the Mapuche sprang the trap too early.[2] In the battle, over 3,000 Mapuche warriors were killed.[2] Galvarino was one of several hundred who were captured. He was sentenced to be hung. Some say he was executed by being thrown to the dogs.[4] Others claim he was hanged.[2] Still others say he killed himself before he could be executed.[2]


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  1. "Galvarino". Biografías y Vidas. Retrieved 26 May 2016.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 2.7 2.8 "Galvarino, the Mapuche Warrior with Knives for Hands". Mental Floss. Retrieved 26 May 2016.
  3. Jerónimo de Vivar, Crónica, Capítulo CXXXII
  4. Vivar, Crónica, Capítulo CXXXIII

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