La guerra de África y el cólera (1859-60)

Translated title of the contribution: The African war and cholera (1859-60)

Joan Serrallonga Urquidi*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articleResearchpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


It has been accepted that the treaties of the 1860s, signed after the capture ot Tetuán, meant a caesura in European penetration into the empire and history of Morocco. But the campaign of 1859-60, the African War, demostrated in Spain a set of weaknesses that were difficult to get around. The controversy is so profound and so much debated that arguments range from considering it as a civilizing mission and a spreading of the faith to a later characterization as a futile and harmfully quixotic act. Besides the fact that the strategic plan was uncertain in the army and navy, cholera provoked the greatest number of losses in the expeditionary corps, in such a scandalous proportion that it will long be remembered. Military assistance showed itself to be as it was: practically nonexistent. The undeniable initial popularity of the African War (songs, plays, ballads) turned sour when wounded soldiers were seen passing through. Meanwhile, cholera ended the tale of mythic Spain and brought it back to reality.

Translated title of the contributionThe African war and cholera (1859-60)
Original languageSpanish
Pages (from-to)233-260
Number of pages28
JournalHispania - Revista Espanola de Historia
Issue number198
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 1998


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