Visiting Fabini — or Entrevero — Square, Montevideo, Uruguay: peace and struggle at the fulcrum

Flag of Uruguay
Flag of Uruguay | Source
Fabini - or Entrevero - Square, Montevideo.
Fabini - or Entrevero - Square, Montevideo. | Source
Fabini, or Entrevero, Square, Montevideo. (In the background, the Rex Building). Montevideo.
Fabini, or Entrevero, Square, Montevideo. (In the background, the Rex Building). Montevideo. | Source
Map location of Montevideo, Uruguay
Map location of Montevideo, Uruguay | Source

Contemplating Uruguayan history in Downtown Montevideo

What it will be called may depend on whom you ask.

Some history and features

This public square in Montevideo, Uruguay's capital city, bears the official name of Fabini Square (Spanish: Plaza Fabini ). Or even more formally, Engineer Juan Pedro Fabini Square (Spanish: Plaza Ingeniero Juan Pedro Fabini ).

The Square is named for a distinguished civil engineer Juan Pedro Fabini (1876-1962), who held a number of prominent posts, including that of Intendente (Mayor) of Montevideo between 1943 and 1947. This prominent citizen oversaw the planning of the junction between Avenida Agraciada (1), which runs between the Legislative Palace (Spanish: Palacio Legislativo ) and Avenida 18 de Julio, a central, east-west avenue in Montevideo's Downtown. The public square now named for Engineer Fabini is located at the junction of these two major avenues. From both the perspective of road traffic and of its prominence in public events, Fabini Square is thus among the busiest localities in the Uruguayan capital; indeed, whenever a new President of Uruguay is inaugurated, the person taking office travels past it by custom from the Legislative Palace along Avenida Agraciada / Libertador and Avenida 18 de Julio to Independence Square (Spanish: Plaza Independencia ).

Yet the Square is also somewhat of a herbaceous haven of peace amidst the bustle of the encircling Downtown traffic.

Less formally, the Square is often referred to as Entrevero Square (Spanish: Plaza del Entrevero ). This name is derived from a sculpture of the same name, which is situated in the Square. This bronze sculpture by José Belloni (1882-1965), El Entrevero often translates as 'The Struggle'. It is a work indicating great tenseness and vigour, depicting gauchos and native Uruguayans engaged in conflict; more broadly, it is intended to commemorate the contribution of anonymous warriors in the wars of Uruguay's independence era.

Among the buildings facing the Square is the particularly striking Rex Building (Spanish: Edificio Rex ) on Avenida 18 de Julio , which was designed by Alfredo Jones Brown (1876-1950) and built between 1926 and 1928. The Square also has an underground exhibition area.

July 25, 2012

Note

(1) Avenida Agraciada is now known as Avenida Libertador — Liberator Avenue.

Also worth seeing

In Montevideo itself, the numerous visitor attractions include: the Legislative Palace; the Salvo Palace; the Independence Building facing Plaza Independencia; the Gateway to the Citadel; the Cerro Fortresss; the Cerrito;the Artigas Mausoleum; the main building of the University of the Republic (UdelaR); the Obelisk; Montevideo Cathedral (Matriz church) in the Old City; and many others.

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How to get there: LanChile flies to Montevideo , Uruguay from North American destinations including New York and Toronto . The Uruguayan airline PLUNA, which codeshares with VARIG, flies to a number of Latin American regional destinations. Car rental is available at Montevideo Carrasco International airport. Please check with the airline or your travel agent for up to date information. Some facilities may be withdrawn, without notice. citizens of certain nationalities are also advised to contact appropriate consular sources regarding border crossing visa requirements which may be required.

MJFenn is an independent travel writer based in Ontario, Canada.

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