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Francisco de Miranda

Francisco de Miranda (Caracas, Venezuela, March 28, 1750 - Cßdiz, Espa˝a, July 14, 1816), South American revolutionary, whose own plan for the independence of the Spanish American colonies failed, but let him be called "Precursor", "forerunner" of BolÝvar and other more effective american independency fighters.

He took part in military operations in the 3 continents: Africa, Europe and America, and played an important role in all three great events of his time: the Independence War of the British Colonies in North America, where he commanded spanish troops aiding american patriots in Florida and Mississippi, the French Revolution, where he served as French Revolutionary general and the Independence struggle for the liberation of the colonies in Spanish America.

Miranda envisioned an independent empire, stretching from the Mississippi to Cape Horn, under the leadership of a hereditary emperor who would be called Inca, being part of a royal family and with a legislature of two houses.

He conceived the name "Colombia" for the american territories under spanish and portuguese rule, after his discoverer, Christopher Columbus.

With british help, he made a failed invasion attempt of the Cost of Venezuela (Coro) in 1806. Later, after the events of April 19, 1810, BolÝvar persuaded Miranda to return to Venezuela, where he was made a general in the revolutionary army. When the country formally declared independence on July 5, 1811, he assumed dictatorial powers.

The Spanish forces counterattacked, and Miranda, fearing a brutal and hopeless defeat, signed an armistice with them in July 1812. Bolivar and other revolutionaries believed his surrender was treason and thwarted Miranda's attempt to escape; they allowed him to be handed over to the Spanish Royalists and he died in his prison in Cadiz.