Trienio Liberal (Liberal Triennium) (1820-1823)

On January 1, 1820, the Lieutenant colonel Rafael del Riego proclaims the Constitution of Cadiz in Cabezas de San Juan, Seville´s province. The following uprisings on behalf of Spain on February will contribute to its successfulness. In March, the king Ferdinand VII will call the Courts and will oath on the Constitution with deep sorrow.

Regarding the policy taken towards America in the absolute period, the new government exchanged repression for politics. The sent of troops are substitute by superintendents in order to attract to them the independent leaders and in order for Spain to acknowledge, the people had to surrender to the royal authorities. The government announced the ceasefire to negotiate with the independent leaders the constitution´s acceptance. If it was accepted, Spain would immediately end the rebellion and would publish a total amnesty; if not, the war would continue. The eleven superintendents failed, due to claim of patriots to the acknowledgement of their independence from Spain.

The Courts where open on July 9 and in their meetings they outline the division of the liberals among the moderate, called doceañistas; and the radicals, called exaltados (The exaggerated ones).

Once again, the petitions from the Americans of equality in representation, free trade and the dismissal of despotic officials were omitted. The modern liberals consider that the constitution is good enough to satisfy their needs, especially the Creoles that will see how the constitution doesnt recognize equality between Spanish and Americans. The customs regulations will not favor the trade due to the liberal´s dependency on the bourgeoisie support from the Cadiz merchants. On April 25 the government confirms the decree of the Cadiz´s Courts that ended the mit´a, the distribution and the self-servitude of the indigenous.

The American representation will continue to be less and their representatives will start leaving and the ones that stay and try to explain the problems of the overseas territories will be ignored. On June 25, 1821 several American representatives asked for the creation of three venues of the Courts in America in order to be closer of the American reality: one for New Spain and Central America, another one for New Granada and Firm Land and a third one for Peru, Río de la Plata and Chile. Each of these Courts will have jurisdiction over a vast region with a president that will act with an executive man, appointed by the king. Each of them will have their own Department, a high court of justice and a state council. This federative project turned out to be rejected.

In 1821 take place a series of important events that will turn out to be low for Spain. On August 24, Juan O´Donojú (Seville, 1762- Mexico, D.F, 1821) who was political chief of New Spain (position that substitute the viceroy) signs the Tratado de Córdoba (Cordoba´s Treaty) along with Agustín Iturbide (Morelia, Mexico, 1783-Padilla, Mexico, 1824) leader of the independence Army. In the treaty, O´Donojú acknowledges the independence of New Spain without the authorization of Spain. In Peru´s viceroyalty, the situation of the realists army worsens. In September, the Portuguese Cour acknowledges the independence of Buenos Aires and on December 1st the independence of Saint-Domingue is declared.

In 1820, Spain and 1812s Constitution turns to be a role model for the European revolutionary. The Kingdom of the Two Sicilys starts its revolution on July 2 and the Constitution of Cadiz is proclaimed. From Naples the movement will extend to all the Italian Peninsula. In the Pontifical Sates, Lucca and Elba the same steps are taken. Finally, the kingdom of Piamonte-Cerdeña will add to the movement and on March 9, 1821 the Spanish Constitution will be proclaimed.

The revolutionary period of 1820 will extend to Portugal as well. In Oporto on August 24, starts the liberal revolution and in November, the Cadiz Constitution rules.