Coins catalog - Araucania-Patagonia


Araucania-Patagonia

The Kingdom of Araucanía and Patagonia (Spanish: Reino de la Araucanía y de la Patagonia; French: Royaume d'Araucanie et de Patagonie, sometimes referred to as New France) was the name of a state and kingdom thought in the 19th century by a French lawyer and adventurer named Orélie-Antoine de Tounens. Orélie-Antoine de Tounens claimed the regions of Araucanía and eastern Patagonia hence the name of kingdom. Albeit Orélie-Antoine de Tounens declared its creation it was an unrecognized state[2] that enjoyed only marginal sovereignty in a brief period of time, through alliances with some Mapuche lonkos, in a reduced area of Araucanía, in current Chile. At the time the local indigenous Mapuche population of Araucanía and Patagonia were engaged in a desperate armed struggle to retain their independence in the face of hostile military and economic encroachment by the governments of Chile and Argentina, who coveted the Mapuche lands for economical and political reasons. No states officially recognized the Araucanía and Patagonia, but the kingdom, now exiled in France, still stands today.

The first Araucanian king's present-day successor, Prince Philippe, lives in France and has renounced his predecessor's claims to the Kingdom, but he has kept alive the memory of Orélie-Antoine, and lent continued support to the on-going struggle for Mapuche self-determination. He authorised the minting a series of commemorative coins in cupronickel, silver, gold, and palladium since 1988. Philippe, aka Philippe Boiry, is said to have purchased the title. When he visited Argentina and Chile once, he met with hostility by the local media and cold shoulder by most of the Mapuche organisations.




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