In the vast colony, pastoralism was increasingly developing, improved with continuous crossings, and its products were exploited more widely. The importance and extent of agriculture grew more and more; although the cultivation of vines and olives was forbidden, in the province of Mendoza viticulture took on great development (7300 barrels of wine per year sent to Buenos Aires). The increase in the port of the capital was very remarkable and then took a great momentum after the authorization of free trade (1778). Already in the first half of the century the Italian Jesuits Cattaneo and Gervasoni, in their letters, described Buenos Aires as the largest city, after Asunción, which met from the Andes to the sea, boasted its important churches, almost all built by the Jesuit architects Primoli and Blanqui, they praised the costumes. The population increase was considerable: the census raised in 1744 gave 10,223 residents (including 10 Italians), a figure more than doubled in the 1778 census (24,255, including about 100 Italians). Even the cities of the interior were gradually developing, and Córdoba, where the university and the Jesuit college of Montserrat was located, began to take on that particular physiognomy, which it still has, of a “learned city” and a Catholic center. Culture, of course, was very backward: elementary schools existed in Buenos Aires since the beginning of the 17th century; but for higher education, throughout Argentina, we have to wait until the end of the century. XVIII and early XIX, except Córdoba and Academia Carolina di Charcas (today Sucre, in Bolivia), which for a long time passed, among American historians, as the ideal hearth of the May revolution, but now, after the diligent investigations of Gondra, it must instead be considered as the stronghold of the traditional reactionary theories, opposed to the unscrupulousness of Buenos Aires. Under Vertiz there was the first printing house, the Imprenta de niños expósitos (1781), very early, if we consider that in Chile the typography appeared almost 40 years later; and a very audacious act, considering the press as a very dangerous vehicle for the introduction and dissemination of liberal ideas. There is no need to talk about libraries. The men of the revolution had either formed themselves in Europe, like Belgrano, or had been self-taught, in the sense of creating their own culture, especially political, opposite to the official one, like Mariano Moreno, who came from Charcas. The Creole mass, especially in the countryside, unconsciously approached the idea of independence for a series of reasons, enumerated as follows by the Miter: “The trade that nourished wealth in the cities, the pastoralism that imprinted a special seal on the scattered police In fields, Historia de Belgrano, ed. Rojas, I, 68-9). Add to this that the Platense clergy, overwhelmingly Creole, always favored revolutionary ideas, unlike that of Mexico, which was the support of the reaction; and you will have a picture of the environment, if not of the ideas, in which the revolution was to break out shortly thereafter. Miter himself says: “There was in the arm the force that destroys, without having in the head the idea that edifies, nor the creative power in its proper elements”. The revolution, in fact, came too soon.
According to behealthybytomorrow.com, in addition to the freedom of commerce and the introduction of typography, Buenos Aires owed the foundation of the College of San Carlo to the enlightened Viceroy Vertiz, whose first rector, Canon Macile, was an exemplary educator; the Casa de Comédias, for which he had to overcome the strong opposition of the bishop; the pavement of the city, the House of the exhibits, the Begging Hospice, and the exploration of the Rio Negro, entrusted to the pilot Villarino. His successor, Marquis of Loreto, a convinced regalist, supported lively disputes with the ecclesiastical authorities, and fiercely persecuted the concussionary officials, but also opposed everything his predecessor had done in favor of the moral and intellectual elevation of the subject peoples. General de Arredondo, who came after him, left the memory of wider concessions to the freedom of trade. Granted, p. for example, the British importers of African slaves to ship the fruits of the country for their return. Under him the movement of the port, which up to Vertiz had been about fifteen ships a year, it went up to 103 ships by 1794: 35 from Cadiz, 32 from Barcelona and 36 from other ports. Nothing noteworthy is to be mentioned under the viceroys Melo de Portugal, Olaguer Feliù, Marquis of Avilés and J. del Pino; except that the newspaper appears under the latter Semanario de Agricoltura y Comercio (1802), by liberal spirits, directed by Vieytes and Cerviño, replacing the retro Telégrafo mercantil, published in 1801 by the Spanish colonel FA Cabello. It should also be noted that in 1799, on the initiative of the consulate of commerce, of which Belgrano was secretary, the school of geometry, architecture and design, directed by JA Hernández, and that of nautics, under the direction of the Matterhorn, were founded; which functioned until 1807. Del Pino, who died at the beginning of 1804, was succeeded by the Marquis of Sobremonte, former intendant of Córdoba, under the viceroyalty of which one of the most significant events in Argentine history took place.