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Bento Gonçalves (September 23, 1788 in Triunfo – July 18, 1847 in Pedras Brancas), was an army officer, politician, monarchist and rebel leader of the Empire of Brazil. He was the first President of the Riograndense Republic and is considered by many to be one of the most important figures in the history of Rio Grande do Sul.

Bento Gonçalves da Silva
Bento Gonçalves. Unknown author, oil on canvas, 19th century. Museum Júlio de Castilhos
1st President of the Riograndense Republic
In office
11 September 1836 – 1841
Vice PresidentJosé Gomes de Vasconcelos Jardim
Preceded byNone (Empire of Brazil)
Succeeded byJosé Gomes de Vasconcelos Jardim
Personal details
BornSeptember 23, 1788
Triunfo, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil (Portuguese Colony)
DiedJuly 18, 1847(1847-07-18) (aged 58)
Pedras Brancas, Empire of Brazil
Political partyRagamuffin Party
Spouse(s)Maria Tomásia Azambuja

Although a staunch monarchist,[1] Gonçalves led the rebel forces in the Ragamuffin War. Radicals within the rebel ranks forced the rebellion to become republican, something that Gonçalves opposed.[2] Still, even though he fought against the Empire, Gonçalves and his troops celebrated the birthday of the young Emperor Dom Pedro II.[3] After the conflict ended with the victory of the Empire, Gonçalves paid his respect to Pedro II by kissing his hand during the latter's trip to Rio Grande do Sul in December 1845.[3]

His main companions in arms during the rebellion were Antônio de Souza Neto and Giuseppe Garibaldi.


  1. ^ Rodrigues 1990, p. 380.
  2. ^ Rodrigues 1990, p. 372.
  3. ^ a b Rodrigues 1990, p. 382.


  • Rodrigues, Alfredo Ferreira (1990). Vultos e fatos da Revolução Farroupilha (in Portuguese). Brasília, Federal District: Imprensa Nacional.