Hacienda is a Spanish word for an estate, usually, but not always, a vast ranch. Some haciendas were plantations, mines, or even factories. Many haciendas combined these productive activities.

The hacienda system of Argentina, parts of Brazil, Mexico and New Granada was a system of large land-holdings that were an end in themselves as the marks of status. The hacienda aimed for self-sufficiency in everything but luxuries meant for display, which were destined for the handful of people in the circle of the "patrón".

Haciendas originated in land grants, mostly made to minor nobles, as the grandees of Spain were not motivated to leave, and the bourgeoisie had little access to royal dispensation. It is in Mexico that the "hacienda" system can be considered to have its origin in 1529, when the Spanish crown granted to Hernán Cortés the title of Marquis of the Valley of Oaxaca, which entailed a tract of land that included all of the present state of Morelos. Significantly, the grant included all the Indians then living on the land and power of life and death over every soul on his domains. There was no court of appeals governing a "hacienda." The unusually large and profitable Jesuit "hacienda" Santa Lucia near Mexico, established in 1576 and lasting to the expulsion in 1767, has been reconstructed by Herman W. Konrad (1980) from archival sources. This reconstruction has revealed the nature and operation of the hacienda system in Mexico, its serfs, its systems of land tenure, the workings of its isolated, interdependent society.

"s, etc. The "peones" worked land that belonged to the "patrón". The "campesinos" worked small holdings, and owed a portion to the "patrón." The economy of the eighteenth century was largely a barter system, with little specie circulated on the hacienda.

Stock raising was central to the ranching haciendas. Where the "hacienda" included working mines, as in Mexico, the "patrón" might be immensely wealthy.

The Catholic Church and its orders, especially the Jesuits, were granted vast "hacienda" holdings, linking the interests of the church with the rest of the landholding class. In the history of Mexico and other Latin American countries, this resulted in hostility to the church, including confiscations of their haciendas and other restrictions.

In South America, the "hacienda" remained after the collapse of the colonial system in the early nineteenth century. In some places, such as Santo Domingo, the end of colonialism meant the fragmentation of the large plantation holdings into a myriad small subsistence farmers' holdings, an agrarian revolution. In Argentina and elsewhere, a second, international, money-based economy developed independently of the "haciendas" which sank into rural poverty.

In most of Latin America the old holdings remained. In Mexico the "haciendas" were abolished by law in 1917 during the revolution, but remnants of the system affect Mexico today. In rural areas, the wealthiest people typically affect the style of the old hacendados even though their wealth these days derives from more capitalistic enterprises.

The hacienda system and lifestyles were also imitated in the Philippines which was colonized by Spain through Mexico for 300 years. Attempts to break up the hacienda system in the Philippines through land reform laws during the second half of the 1900's have proven moderately successful.

In popular culture, haciendas are often portrayed in telenovelas like "A Escrava Isaura" and "".

Famous haciendas

*Hacienda Napoles
*The Hass Tamworth
*Hacienda Guachalá
*Hacienda Juriquilla

ee also

* Hacienda (band) American Rock and Roll Group
* Fazenda
* Hacienda (resort) demolished hotel and casino on the Las Vegas Strip
* Ranch
* Plantation in the US in areas where Slavery was legal
* Feudalism

External links

* [http://www.hort.purdue.edu/newcrop/tropical/lecture_10/lec_10.html Hacienda system described]

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Look at other dictionaries:

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