Paraguay’s first anthem was adopted in 1831, called “Tetã purahéi”, and written by Anastacio Rolón completely in the native Guaraní language (the ruler of the time, José Gaspar Rodríguez, refused it to be translated into Spanish, and insisted that it always be performed in Guaraní). A later president, Carlos Antonio López, translated it into Spanish in 1845 as the “Himno de la independencia” (Anthem of Independence) as a literal translation of the Guaraní. It is unknown who wrote the music, or what it was.

During López’ presidency, he requested Francisco Esteban Acuña de Figueroa, the lyricist of Uruguay’s anthem, to write a new anthem for the country. It was completed on May 20, 1846 and approved as the national anthem that year. It is unknown who created the original music of the anthem (some sources list Francisco José Debali, who was also the composer of Uruguay’s anthem), but in 1934, Paraguayan composer Remberto Giménez rearranged and developed the version of the anthem in use today.

Paraguay’s anthem is a classic example of a “Latin American epic anthem”. The seven verses of the anthem also resemble other nations’ anthems of this type, for example, the first three verses of Paraguay’s anthem, recalling its history and specific events, is very similar to the theme of Honduras‘ anthem, whereas the fourth verse which praises the national symbols, and the last three verses, which are a call to patriotism, are common themes in these type of anthems.

Special thanks to: Víctor Cantillano for some of this information and the lyrics of the first national anthem.