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Spanish word for the class of wealthy landowners that basically ran the show in pre-revolution Mexico. Hacendados were comparable to feudal lords in the serf-like system of patronage under which the vast majority of poor Mexicans were tenant farmers. The huge tracts of land controlled by hacendados were called haciendas. Shit really started to hit the fan in terms of getting the revolution under way when in the early 1900s a large portion of the hacendados were actually foreign investors, meaning Mexicans themselves only owned a very small share of Mexico.

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