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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Manuel Payno
Manuel Payno.jpg
BornJune 21, 1810
Mexico City, Mexico
DiedNovember 5, 1894
Mexico City, Mexico
OccupationPolitician, essayist, novelist, short-story writer
GenrePoetry, costumbrism, picaresque, journalism
Notable works
  • The Bandits of Río Frio (1889–1891)
  • The Man of the Situation (1861)

Manuel Payno (Mexico City, 1810 – San Ángel Tenanitla, 1894), was a Mexican writer, journalist, politician and diplomat. His political ideology was moderate liberal. Payno's most notable literature work include Los bandidos de Río Frio [es] (Spanish: The Bandits of Río Frio), a costumbrista novel which stood up as an important and iconic piece of the Mexican literature, which has been an inspiration source for other writers and artists, and also from which several film adaptations have been made in Mexico.

Early years and start of political career

His father was Manuel Payno Bustamante González, founder of Matamoros Customs, in northern Tamaulipas.[1] Little is known about his mother, some sources cite her name as María Josefa Cruzado Pardo who belonged to prominent family from Puebla. However, some other sources cite her mother's last name as Flores. Payno entered the Matamoros Customs branch as meritorious, along with Guillermo Prieto. In 1840, he served as secretary of general Mariano Arista, and when he achieved a lieutenant colonel rank was chief of a section of the Mexican Ministry of War. Subsequently, he managed a tobacco shop.

War with the United States and Ministry of Finance

In 1847 he fought against the American army invasion of Mexico during the Mexican-American War, he established the secret postal service between Mexico city and Veracruz. He was Minister of Finance during the José Joaquín de Herrera administration (1850–1851) and also during the government of Ignacio Comonfort.

War of Reform and French Intervention

Inculpted as one of those involved in the coup d'état headed by Félix Zuloaga – absent from the government of Ignacio Comonfort – he was prosecuted and removed from politics. Manuel Payno was also persecuted during the Second French Intervention in Mexico, and he ended up recognizing the government of Maximilian of Habsburg. Once the Republic was restored, with Benito Juárez as president, Payno became a deputy.

Teacher and diplomat

Manuel Payno worked as a teacher and taught at the National Preparatory School created by Gabino Barreda. He was a professor at the School of Commerce, where he taught Political Economy. Being senator, in 1882, the then president of Mexico Manuel González "El Manco" sent him as an agent to Paris. In 1886 he was appointed consul in Santander, Spain and subsequently consul general in Spain, establishing his residence in Barcelona. In 1891 he returned to Mexico and in 1892 he was again elected senator, a position he held until his death, on 5 November 1894 in San Ángel, Mexico city. He wrote "Tratado de la propiedad. Ensayo de un estudio del Derecho Romano y del Derecho Público y Constitucional en lo relativo a la propiedad. (Property Treaty. Essay of a study of Roman Law and Public and Constitutional Law in relation to property).[2]


Payno was active in a wide range of different activities, being also a prominent writer and novelist. A lover of reading, he combined his political activities with those of a journalist and writer. His journalistic work includes historical, political and financial articles. He collaborated for the newspapers El Ateneo Mexicano, The Ten and Nine Century, The New Year, The Bulletin of the Society of Geography and Statistics, The Federalist and Don Simplicio, among others.[3] He was a corresponding member of the Royal Spanish Academy. He wrote novels such as El fistol del diablo (The Devil's Tiepin) (1845–1846), in which he puts fun before moral principles. El hombre de la situación (The Man of the Situation) (1861), a novel of customs that covers the last years of Viceroyalty of New Spain and the first ones of independent Mexico. In this work the story stands out two main characters which are father and son, one peninsular Spanish (Old World Spanish) and the other Criollo (New World Spanish). A costumbrista novel in which daily life details of society are depicted, comic passages abound in which a very Mexican grace and picaresque stands out.

The novel Los bandidos de Río Frio (The Bandits of Río Frío) (1889–1891), undoubtedly his masterpiece and most notable work, was written under the pseudonym of "A Mexican creator (ingenio)", during his second stay in Europe. Los bandidos de Río Frío is a recreation of Mexico from the first half of the 19th century. The plot is rich in incidents recorded in real life. Payno considered his work as "naturalistic novel, humorous of customs and crimes and horrors." Payno makes a long description of the environment and setting, including the background of the characters, the events revolve around all social strata of the time, an appropriate pretext to depict potentates, professionals, military, artisans, merchants, Indians, clerics and thieves. The novel also depicts Mexico's cultural and ethnic diversity and the contrasts of lifestyles among social classes and life in the cities and the countryside.

Some other of his works are; Compendio de historia de México (Compendium of the history of Mexico), Novelas cortas (Short Novels), La España y la Francia (Spain and France), El libro rojo (The red book) (co-authored with Vicente Riva Palacio, Juan A. Mateos and Rafael Martínez de la Torre) and La convención española (The Spanish Convention).

See also


  1. ^ Memories of my times p. 32 and 33, by Guillermo Prieto. Collection "Sepan cuántos...", no. 481. Mexico: Porrúa. 1985.
  2. ^ "Property Treaty. Essay of a study of Roman Law and Public and Constitutional Law regarding property". I. Punpido Press. 1869. [This work has free access in the Virtual Law Library of the UNAM]
  3. ^ Rodriguez, Ana Mónica. "Manuel Payno, notable promoter of journalism". La Jornada (in Spanish). Retrieved 8 July 2012.

External links

This page was last edited on 14 November 2021, at 18:57
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