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Carlos Nino  in HISTORY
Latinos in London  on 2012-12-04

Simon Bolivar visits London

Simón Bolívar liberated much of South America from Spanish rule in the 19th century and became one of Latin America's greatest heroes. In 1810 Bolívar (Top pictured) visited Britain, as head of a diplomatic mission, to enlist British support for the newly formed Junta in Caracas. At this stage Bolívar was not empowered to lobby for British support for full Venezuelan independence from Spain, but he was nonetheless seeking arms supplies and commercial protection. London became an important centre for raising funds, recruiting volunteers and buying weapons for the rebel armies.

They came to London on board the Royal Naval vessel Wellington, arriving on 10 July, and sailed home on 22 September on another RN ship, the Sapphire. He was accompanied by his former tutor, Andrés Bello, and Luis López Méndez who went on to become Bolívar’s recruiting agent in London and played a crucial role in getting the men and arms over to South America.. Bolívar called López Méndez the `the true Liberator’. The visit was hosted by Francisco de Miranda, the Venezuelan soldier and patriot, regarded as the ‘Precursor of independence’, who was living in London.

Simon Bolivar's London statue is located at Belgrave Square SW1X, UKone of the grandest 19th century London squares.

Bolívar admired British institutions, especially the system of constitutional monarchy. His political ideas were strongly influenced by the writings of British political philosophers like Jeremy Bentham, Thomas Hobbes and John Locke. 

Here you can see the different views of Bolivar among the years and the latest 3D face reconstruction unveiled in Venezuela by President Chavez.

Above the painting by Jason Askew (South Africa) placed at the Bolivar Hall at the Venezuelan Embassy in London unveiled by the Venezuelan Ambassador in celebration of 200 years independence of Venezuela representing Bolivar visiting London at the Venezuelan Embassy in early years meeting Francisco de Miranda, Simón Bolívar, Andrés Bello y Luis López Méndez at la Casa Miranda where they started the idea of the independence of Venezuela.

Find out more about Simon Bolivar at

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