Spanish Language Blog

The Independence of Chile Posted by on Oct 26, 2010 in Spanish Culture

“Aquí está el bastón, disponed de él y del mando.” With these words Mateo de Toro y Zambrano opened the Cabildo Abierto sesión, on September 18, 1810 which was the first step to start the process for Chile to gain independence from Spain. Such process came to an end ten years later, after the Maipú Battle, on February 12, 1818.

The Chile Independence festivities last a whole week, starting on September 18. The Chilean people enjoy parades, dances, games, music, typical food and many other shows of national pride. The guasos (Chilean cowboys) participate in rodeos and many of these festivities are held at festival or refreshment stalls which date back from that time because these were the entertainment places for the people in open terrains, where people would go to relax.

At that time, las ramadas (festival stalls) were roofed with cane or straw, nowadays they are temporarily set up in public or private open places and are covered with straw, tree branches and are adorned with garlands. In these ramadas, you can find chairs and tables with room for people to dance cumbias, polkas and cuecas (typical Chilean dance music) and eat asado (barbecue), empanadas (typical Chilean pastry) and la chicha (alcoholic beverage made from wine).

Chileans also play a lot of games like el palo ensebado, which consists of a 5-6 meters wood pole buried in the ground, smeared with fat and that has to be climbed by all competitors who will get the prize if they get to the top. People also have la carrera de sacos (sack race) and play with el trompo (top), la rayuela (hopscotch), la pallana (a game played with little stones) and bolitas (marbles). They also have kite (volantín or barrilete) competitions as one of the most popular activities.

Eso es todo por hoy, mi gente. Los veo prontito.

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About the Author: Adir

English / Spanish teacher and translator for over 20 years. I have been blogging since 2007 and I am also a professional singer in my spare time.


  1. Charles Laster:

    Viva los 33!