Asentamiento y territorialidad indígena en el Partido del Maule en el siglo XVI

Alejandra Vega


The article studies territorial occupation and settlement of indigenous populations that lived in the Partido del Maule, Capitanía General de Chile, in the XVI century. Is starts with an analysis of the various types of edited and unedited sources that are available on the subject: chronicles and bureaucratic documentation, records on the encomiendas and mercedes de tierra, administrative visits and judicial procedures of diverse origins corresponding to the XVI, XVII and XVIII centuríes. We establish that the indigenous territory during the XVI century appears under a different -fragmented, non comparable- view depending on the type of document and date of production. The common denominator is a lack of interest in the territory actually inhabited or used by this population. In reviewing these fragmented views on territory, changes become apparent around 1580, linked to the process of reducción. Finally, these results are contrasted with the descriptions constructed during subsequent centuries concerning the first years of colonial period as well as with archacological findings.

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