THE KINGDOM OF ARAUCANIA AND PATAGONIA


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The Kingdom of Araucania and Patagonia founded in 1860 by the Mapuche Indians in territory now occupied by the Republics of Chile and Argentina. Orelie-Antoine de Tounens, a French lawyer living in Araucania, was elected by the Mapuche to be the first King of Araucania and Patagonia. In 1862, King Orelie-Antoine was kidnapped by Chilean soldiers and deported to France. He mounted three expeditions to reclaim his throne and rally the Mapuche against the Republic of Chile, which was invading and colonizing Mapuche lands. In 1878, King Orelie-Antoine died in Tourtoirac, France.

Though the royal house has been in exile in France for over a century, it has never relinquished its rights under international law. The current head of the Royal House of Araucania and Patagonia is Prince Philippe of Araucania. He maintains close contacts with Mapuche groups both in South America and in Europe. He has spoken before the United Nations Working Group on Indigenous People as a representative of Mapuche people living in Argentina.

It is important to distinguish a state, which is a political apparatus, from a nation, which is a group of people joined by common language, culture and history. While the Kingdom of Araucania and Patagonia no longer exists and is only an historical memory, the Mapuche nation has preserved its cultural identity in spite of the concerted efforts of colonial and republican governments to either exterminate them -- as happened in Argentina -- or to forcibly incorporate them in a western, European culture -- as continues to happen in Chile through laws designed to destroy Mapuche culture, traditions, land tenure and language.

For more information on the Mapuche nation, please visit the page :The Mapuche Nation.

NAARS Link to the North American Araucanian Royalist Society