JOSE MEJIA LEQUERICA
a highly intellectual, disciplined representative for post-Independence
Ecuador. As the child of an illegitimate union between a married man and
his mother, he was persecuted by government and university officials,
who refused to offer him degrees until he could cleanse his birth.
Having protested, he went into exile in Guayaquil, Lima, and later
Spain. He fought in Madrid against the French invasion by Napoleon, and
fled to Seville. Following a series of confrontations with political
leaders, Mejía settled in Cadiz, where he became a parliamentary
representative until his death of yellow fever at age 38.