O'Higgins, Ambrosio

O'Higgins, Ambrosio

(ōhĭg`ĭnz, Span. ämbrō`syō ōē`gēns), 1720?–1801, Spanish colonial administrator, b. Ballinary, Co. Sligo, Ireland. Educated at Cádiz, Spain, under the care of his uncle, who was a Jesuit, he went to South America as a trader. After an adventurous career he so distinguished himself in campaigns against the AraucaniansAraucanians
, South American people, occupying most of S central Chile at the time of the Spanish conquest (1540). The Araucanians were an agricultural people living in small settlements.
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 that he was appointed (1789) governor of Chile. He was later made marquis of Osorno and served capably as viceroy (1796–1801) of Peru. Bernardo O'Higgins was his son.
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