We are excited to celebrate Argentina’s May Revolution Day on May 25. Having been colonized by the Spanish Viceroyalty, Argentina saw many attempts at being conquered by military campaigns and other nations, including French military campaign leader Napoleon Bonaparte. Bonaparte was successful in overthrowing King Ferdinand VII’s government and, in place of the Spanish King, he placed his own brother, Joseph Bonaparte, on the throne. This led to a week-long series of revolutions, sometimes referred to as evolutions, by the locals who craved independence from invaders and colonial rulers.
History of May Revolution Day
Argentina’s May Revolution started on May 25 in 1810. The actual commemorative day was the last day in the week-long series of events, which started on May 18. During that stage in history, Argentina had been part of Spanish colonial rule for quite some time. Other countries that Spain had invaded included Paraguay, Bolivia, and parts of Brazil. After years of the Spanish Viceroyalty’s rule, King Ferdinand VII’s throne was abdicated by Napoleon Bonaparte. Confining the former king in a luxurious chateau, Bonaparte wanted someone trustworthy on the throne. He elected his brother, Joseph, as the new King of Spain.
However, seeing King Ferdinand VII dethroned did not sit well with the locals. They appealed to local Spanish authorities to fight back. At the same time, Argentinians realized that this was a golden chance to take back their freedom from colonizers and other invaders. The catalyst was the previous two years of Spain’s Peninsular War, which had put unnecessary and harsh strains on Argentine locals. Thus, the Argentine War of Independence commenced on May 18 in Bueno Aires. No violent activities took place during the revolution period, and the Argentinians were able to take back their freedom successfully on May 25. They formed the First Junta entirely made up of Argentine locals and leaders.
May Revolution Day is a public holiday in Argentina. Many public services like transport are free for everyone to use. TV channels and theatres broadcast special shows that rekindle the spirit of independence in the hearts of people. Parks are filled with families enjoying the day out. Many also take the opportunity to participate in special festivals like the gaucho fair of Buenos Aires and eat ‘locro,’ an Argentinian beef stew.
May Revolution Day timeline
British forces attack Argentina to colonize it for its rich pasture lands but locals defend their home against the invaders.
After helping France with Portugal, Spain is invaded by Napoleon and his forces, overtaking any and all Spanish territories.
On May 13, news reaches Spanish-controlled Argentina that Spain is under the control of Napoleonic forces.
Argentina declares complete freedom from Spain, despite the latter’s continuous attempts to reinvade the former.
May Revolution Day FAQs
How does Argentina celebrate its Independence Day?
This national holiday is commemorated all across Argentina with cultural exhibits, patriotic speeches, and parades. Traditionally, the president attends a special mass at the Catedral Metropolitana de Buenos Aires.
What day is Independence Day in Argentina?
What is commonly referred to as the Independence of Argentina was proclaimed on July 9, 1816, by the Congress of Tucumán.
What happened in the Argentine Revolution?
The Argentine Revolution (Spanish: Revolución Argentina) was the name given by its leaders to a military coup d’état, which overthrew the government of Argentina in June 1966 and began a period of military dictatorship by a junta from then until 1973.
How To Observe May Revolution Day
Educate yourself on the Argentine history
There are many tales of bravery and freedom about Argentina and the fight its people led for independence. Learn about them by further researching the rich history of the country.
Try some ‘locro’
'Locro' is a rich meat stew cooked in Argentina. The delicious aromatic dish has become iconic as it is traditionally eaten on May Revolution Day.
Read up on other revolutions
There are many countries that have gone through a revolutionary period. Often, these revolutionary moments have been against colonizers and invaders. One prominent example includes the revolutionary brigades in India during the British colonial rule.
5 Facts About ‘Locro’ That Will Blow Your Mind
‘Locro’ from the Andes
‘Locro’ originated from indigenous tribes in the Andes during the Incan Empire.
‘Locro’s’ migration to Argentina
The dish traveled with the Cuyo people as they migrated to Northern Argentina before the Spanish colonizers.
‘Locro’ becoming a national dish
During the revolutionary period in May, ‘locro’ became the national dish of the country, reminding its people of the time they demanded independence.
‘Locro’ is healthy and hearty
Apart from special beef cuts, the stew has many vitamins and minerals from ingredients like corn, raisins, chickpeas, etc., and it is often eaten during winter to keep the cold at bay.
National dish of other countries
Argentina isn’t the only country where ‘locro’ is loved — Peru, Colombia, and Ecuador adore the dish so much that it is also a national dish in these countries.
Why We Love May Revolution Day
It’s a celebration of independence
Having freedom is one of the most basic rights of any living being. To have it taken away is a gross violation of nature’s laws. We should value other people’s freedom as much as we value ours.
It’s a celebration of unity
May Revolution Day reminds us why unity within a country is so important. Had the locals in Argentina not banded together to fight for their freedom, Argentina might still have been under colonizers’ rule today.
It’s a celebration of the fighting spirit
Revolutions call for persistency and consistency. If either is missing, people often give up early on in their fight against tyranny. Therefore, it is important to maintain both in order to reach the end goal of freedom.
May Revolution Day dates