Brief history of El Salvador

Cuzcatlán, the main metropolis of the Pipil of El Salvador pre-Columbian Indians, was “city famous for its wealth and power of their Princes” since ancient times, and settled at the foot of the hills of the coastal chain round the sacred Lake of Cuzcatlán.

El Salvador, a brief history

This indigenous, dynamic, prosperous and thriving, city was founded in 1054 by the last of the rulers of Anihuac Tula: King Topilzin Acxitl or Quetzalcohuat II, called also Co-Acatl (aa-Cal-1) and Moconetzin (“child of Maguey”), located in the Valley of the Quezaltepec volcano and the Acelhuate River.

For five centuries, Cuzcatlán or Cuzcatlin reaffirmed its category of large city and was the engine of pipil civilization. In the first half of the 16th century, the jurisdictional limits of the governorates of Guatemala, in charge of Pedro de Alvarado, and Nicaragua, chaired by Pedrarias Dávila were inaccurate. By that time, Pedro Miguel and Pedro Corzo pilots toured the coast south of the current Salvadoran territory.

In a letter given in León Viejo, 15 January 1529 by the Governor of Nicaragua Pedrarias Dávila to Emperor Carlos V of Germany and I of Spain, we read that they have “spotted Nequepio (name as the chorotegas or mangues gave to Cuzcatlin), to the West by the sea of the South to Cuzcatlin”.

Andrés Niño, discoverer of El Salvador

January 26, 1522 Tararequi departed the expedition of Captain Gil González of Avila and the pilot major Andrés Niño, which became quiet place beautiful or La Herradura Harbour, at the tip of the Nicoya peninsula South.

Here landed the captain and the bulk of the army, which would make the conquest of the island of Nicoya and southern coast of Nicaragua. Meanwhile, Andrés Niño would continue sailing westward, in search of a strait or channel to put in contact to the Pacific and Atlantic oceans.

On this trip, child discovered the Bay of Corinto (Nicaragua) which he called La possession, then a beautiful Gulf which Ilamo Gulf of Fonseca, in honor of fray Juan Rodríguez de Fonseca, and a round island and populated (Meanguera), named Petronila, in honor of a much-loved that prelate and official Spanish niece either because arrived in the insula May 31, 1522, day consecrated by the Catholic Church Apostolic and Roman to the Saint of that name. After remedies discovered Xiriualtique (Jiquilisco) Bay, the mouth of the Rio Grande of Lempa, the tip, and reached the Gulf of Tehuantepec, in Mexico. Andrés Niño was the discoverer of El Salvador and the island of Meanguera the first Salvadoran ground tread by the Spanish soldier.

Origin of the name of El Salvador

The Catholic feast of the Holy Savior recalls the Biblical Miracle of the Transfiguration of the Lord on Mount Tabor, when in the presence of San Pedro, San Juan and Santiago arose, according to the Gospels, glorious before Moses and Elijah.

This liturgical solemnity of the Roman Apostolic Catholic Church was instituted in 1457, by Pope Calixto III, in Thanksgiving to the divine Savior of the world by the victory that in the preceding year were at the gates of Belgrade Christian armies of invading Muslim forces captained by Mahomet III. Victory that stopped the penetration of the Turks in the Balkan peninsula.

From these facts, many populations and places were appointed in Christian Europe with the name of San Salvador and many churches placed under the advocation or Board of Trustees of the divine Savior of the world.

Discover Cristóbal Colón the American continent and the island of Guanahani, first Earth found after long days at sea by darker sea, baptized it with the name of San Salvador.

San Salvador, a town founded in 1525

It is April 19, 1525, to organize a second expedition against Cuzcatlán Pedro de Alvarado and trust the success of this journey to his brother Gonzalo de Alvarado, ordered that the town that was founded there being given the name of San Salvador and conforming to the style of the time, on behalf of his brother captain Pedro de Alvarado elected as Mayor 19 of this city of European civilization Diego Holguin.

The Church of this new European colony, entrusted to the priest Francisco Díaz, was placed under the patronage of the Holy Savior or divine Savior of the world, whose liturgical celebration takes place on August 6 every year, recalling the Biblical Miracle of the Transfiguration of the Lord on Mount Tabor.

During the colony, round about of this ancient villa, elevated to the rank of city 27 September 1548 by César Catholic Charles V of Germany and I of Spain, was created with capital in this city, the City Hall Mayor of San Salvador, which originally comprised the provinces of San Vicente, San Miguel or Chaparrastique, Cuzcatlán, Choluteca, and that with the exception of the latter, the intendance of San Salvador was established in 1786. In addition to this political and administrative unit existed during colonial times in the territory today from El Salvador, the Mayor’s Office in Sonsonate or province of the Izalcos.

In 1824 met in the city of San Salvador members of the intendance of San Salvador and the largest municipality in Sonsonate and agreed to form a federal State, with the name of El Salvador, denomination which was confirmed to be issued June 12, 1824 the first Constitution of the country.

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