Definition of encomienda in English:

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encomienda

Pronunciation: /enˌkōmēˈendə/ /-ˌkämē-/

noun

historical
A grant by the Spanish Crown to a colonist in America conferring the right to demand tribute and forced labor from the Indian inhabitants of an area.
Example sentences
  • The entire Soconusco area became a Crown encomienda, with small-scale plots worked by individual families.
  • First, the Franciscans were highly critical of the military conquest of the Indians and of the encomienda system in general.
  • The encomienda system obliged Indians to work for the Spanish in order to pay a large tax.

Origin

Spanish, literally 'commission, charge'.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: en·co·mi·en·da

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