Terra, Gabriel

The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.

Terra, Gabriel

Gabriel Terra (gäbrēĕl´ tĕ´rä), 1873–1942, president of Uruguay (1931–38). In his early career a member of the Colorado party under the leadership of Batlle y Ordóñez, Terra served in several political and diplomatic posts. He suspended congress in 1933, disbanded the council of administration (a body created by the constitution of 1919 as a check on executive power), and abolished the constitution. After a new constitution, promulgated in 1934, restored presidential authority, Terra was reelected and ruled largely by dictatorial decree. He suppressed a serious revolt in 1935. During his administration, however, the socialization of the republic, begun by Batlle, was continued. He was succeeded by an elected president, Alfredo Baldomir.

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