BRAZIL: The Third Republic

Rio took a holiday. Shops closed, and thousands went to the beaches. Others packed the small square before Tiradentes Palace. Within, while society leaders tossed flowers from the balcony, members of the Constituent Assembly signed the constitution of Brazil's Third Republic. Then they paraded to the Presidential palace. "This opens a new era," said President Eurico Gaspar Dutra.

The nine-year period of authoritarian government started by President Getulio Vargas had given way to parliamentary rule. The new constitution was not bad, not good; everything depended on how it would be applied.

It gave the states...

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