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LAVALLEJA, Juan Antonio (lah-val-yay'-hah), Uruguayan soldier, born in Montevideo, 18 July, 1795; died there, 23 October, 1853. He served in the army of his country during the war for independence; but little is known of his career during those years. On 19 April, 1825, a company of patriots of Uruguay, under the command of Colonel Lavalleja, landed in Boca de Gutierrez, Uruguay, with the intention of freeing their country from Brazilian control. Four days afterward they de-feared the Brazilian forces under General Laguna in San Salvador. On 29 May of the same year with other forces he surprised General Rivera, who with all his men joined the popular side. On 12 October he gained the battle of Sarandi, and on 23 May, 1826, the congress of the provinces of Rio de la Plata rewarded him and his comrades with pensions for life. In the battle of Ituzaings, 20 February, 1827, he commanded a brigade of cavalry raider General Alyear and routed the left wing of the Brazilian army. In 1832 General Lavalleja headed a revolution against the first government of Uruguay, but was defeated and obliged to take refuge in Brazil on 20 September of that year. He continued his plotting, and on 19 March, 1834, landed in Punta Gorda, but was defeated and again obliged to take refuge in Brazil. He then retired from politics until the year 1853, when he was the chief member of the triumvirate that was appointed to govern the republic after the deposition of President Giro.
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