Rio Branco, José Maria da Silva Paranhos, barão do (zhŏzĕˈ mərēˈə də sēlˈvə pəräˈnyŏs bərouNˈ dŏ rēˈŏ brängˈkŏ) [key], 1845–1912, Brazilian statesman and diplomat. He was consul in Liverpool from 1876 to 1893, when he was appointed to plead Brazil's case in the border dispute with Argentina arbitrated by President Grover Cleveland. After winning his case in 1895, he worked on the dispute with French Guiana over the territory of Amapá and again won (1900) a substantial victory. He served briefly as minister to Berlin and returned to Brazil in 1902 to become minister of foreign affairs. In this post, which he held until his death, he concluded some 30 treaties of arbitration.
See study by E. F. Burns (1966).
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