General Miranda's Wars: Turmoil and Revolt in Spanish America, 1750-1816
by Denis Smith
Before Simon Bolivar, there was Francisco de Miranda who plotted to free Spain’s colonies in South America. Roaming the world, he cajoled funds from the powerful, including Britain’s William Pitt and Russia’s Catherine the Great. But Miranda’s invasion of New Spain in 1806 was a painful fiasco. He died a prisoner in a Spanish dungeon and the way was now clear for Bolivar’s eventual triumph.