What is Charrúa?
It is known as charrúa the ancient Indian tribe located in the margin of the Rio de Plata, specifically in the present territory of Uruguay until the nineteenth century, and in the current Brazilian state of Rio Grande of the South.
The Charruas fought for a long time against the Spanish, achieving as a first step the death of the explorer and navigator Juan Díaz de Solís, during the discovery of the Río de Plata. They were exterminated in 1831, in the Salsipuedes massacre, after a deception by the Uruguayan army who requested their help to build the defense of Uruguay’s borders, those who attended were attacked by a troop under the command of Bernabé Rivera .
Some managed to escape this massacre, and the last representatives, just four, including Tacuabé, were exhibited in Paris in 1833. In Montevideo there is a monument dedicated to them, declared a National Historic Monument, made by Edmundo Pratti, Gervasio Furest Muñoz and Enrique Lussich. In this way, they achieved the physical disappearance of the Charrúa people but not their cultural legacy.
The Charruas were characterized by their dark skin, high stature (1.68m), robust, hunters, with three transverse lines on the face. However, on holidays and wars the upper jaw was painted white. The Charruas were cruel and inhuman in war with their enemies.
The Charrúa were semi-nomadic hunters and fishermen, who sheltered in tents built in leather, and were known only as bow weapons, wooden-tipped, bear or stone arrows, among others, and bowlers. On the other hand, they practiced barter with their neighboring tribes, from which they obtained ceramics, cotton and mattes.
However, in other countries, the term charrúa is seen as a proper instrument for tilling the land. Also, as a round, cargo or round ship, used until the beginning of the 19th century.
The charrúa claw
The claw charrúa is a Uruguayan expression, it is used in difficult situations, when facing strong obstacles. With a strong use, in the sports field after being used in the South American soccer championship played in Lima, in 1935.
In consideration of the above, the expression manifests itself after achieving victory against a team that was seen as impossible to beat. For example: that charrúa the victory of Venezuela against Colombia.
Sometimes the phrase has some variations such as “Fuerza Charrúa”.