Pedro Goyena

Pedro Goyena ( Buenos Aires 24 as July as 1843 ; 17 as maypole as 1892 ) was a lawyer , writer and politician Argentine . He played a leading role in Argentina ‘s history for its strong opposition to secularism that characterized the so – called Generation of 80 who ruled the country from the second half of the nineteenth century and the first decades of the twentieth century. It was along with José Manuel Estrada and Emilio Lamarca one of the main representatives of the Catholic thought of that period in his country.


He was the son of Pedro Regalado Goyena and of Emilia del Río and Perdriel. 1 Graduated from the Central National College , he graduated as a doctor in jurisprudence in 1869 and a lawyer in 1872. Even before he was received he was professor of philosophy at the National College and since 1869 at the University of Buenos Aires , teaching philosophy. 2

He was provincial deputy from 1865 to 1867 and from 1870 to 1872, constituent of the province of Buenos Aires between 1870 and 1873, deputy to the Congress of the Nation (1873 to 1874), provincial senator (1877-1878) and again national deputy of 1880 to 1884 and between 1886 and 1890. 1

In 1874 he assumed the chair of Roman Law at the University of Buenos Aires that had been vacated after the departure of Vicente Fidel López . 3 He also stood out as a journalist , among others from Revista Argentina y la Unión, who directed with José Manuel Estrada and Tristán Achával Rodríguez , where he defended and argued his positions against the liberal reforms of the governments of that time, whose main representative Was Julio A. Roca .

Particularly important was his performance at the Pedagogical Congress of 1882 where he argued that the common public school should be Catholic having a hard debate with Leandro Alem . Consequently, he opposed the Law 1420 of 1884 on free and compulsory public education, which established the secular public school. He also opposed and represented the opinion of Catholic thought against the Civil Marriage Law enacted in 1888, arguing that the only type of marriage that was to be recognized by the State was that which is realized and registered by the Catholic Church. His ability as a speaker and polemicist were remarkable.

In 1885 he was appointed first vice-president of the recently founded Catholic Union whose presidency exercised Jose Manuel Estrada . 4

Shortly before his death, and led by his position opposed to lay liberalism, he joined the heterogeneous opposition arch that integrated the Civic Union .

He died in his house of San José de Flores in May of 1892 victim of a pneumonia. In his funeral, President Carlos Pellegrini called him ” one of the most brilliant and high manifestations of the Argentine intellectuality, one of the healthiest and noblest characters, one of the most honest and purest lives .” 1

In the city of Buenos Aires they are honored two streets: one in Puerto Madero bordering the coast, and the other an avenue that crosses the neighborhood of Caballito , starting at the border with Boedo and ending at the one corresponding to Flores .

Such is the liberalism condemned by the Church: application of materialism and atheism to civil life. – Pedro Goyena 5


  1. ↑ Jump to:a b c Vicente Osvaldo Cutolo , New Argentine biographical dictionary , Volume III, p.430 / 2, Elche, Buenos Aires, 1971
  2. Back to top↑ Gelly and Obes, p. 157
  3. Back to top↑ Gelly and Obes, p. 159
  4. Back to top↑ Argentine Christian Democracy
  5. Back to top↑ Gelly and Obes, p. 172