Battle of Catirai

Battle of Catirai
Part of Arauco War
DateJanuary 7, 1569
LocationA steep wooded hill in Catirai
Result Mapuche Victory
Spanish Empire Mapuche
Commanders and leaders
Martín Ruiz de Gamboa Llanganabal,

The Battle of Catirai on January 7, 1569 between the Mapuche army of Toqui Llanganabal and the Spanish army led by Martín Ruiz de Gamboa that resulted in a Mapuche victory.


In 1569. Llanganabal had risen to command the Moluche army with Millalelmo and other captains as his subordinates.[1] To resist the Spanish army under Governor Melchor Bravo de Saravia that had been burning the fields and rucas on the south bank of the Bio Bio River, in the aillarehue of Catirai across from Talcamávida. Llanganabal's deputy, Millalelmo had built a strong fortress on a hill in the area in a difficult position on steep wooded slopes. Despite the warnings of Lorenzo Bernal del Mercado who had reconnoitered the position, Spaniards new to Chile and the Arauco War prevailed on Governor Saravia to order Martín Ruiz de Gamboa to take his command and attack the place.

Meanwhile, Llanganabal had gathered all his army there at their fortress to resist the attack.

Gamboa's force was badly defeated while attempting to attack up the steep thickly wooded hill into Llanganabal's fortified position.[2]

Additional information



Coordinates: 37°11′08″S 72°55′58″W / 37.18556°S 72.93278°W / -37.18556; -72.93278

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