This article examines the inter-textual relations between the novel Caramurú (1848?) by the Uruguayan writer Alejandro Magariños Cervantes, and the epic poem O Caramuru (1781) by the Portuguese Friar Jose de Santa Rita Durão. The thesis of the article is that these literary works reflect the deep cultural and political connections between Uruguay and Brazil, and how these links were present at the time when –surrounded by uncertainties about the viability of the new state—the elaboration of a Uruguayan national identity started. The pro-Brazilian option –shown by the selection of Caramuru, who was a foundational character of the Brazilian History and Literature—supported by Magariños Cervantes is related to the above mentioned doubts, and makes evident that the possibility of union with Brazil or with Argentina was powerful at the beginning of the process of construction of a Uruguayan identity.
The intertextual associations are apparent in the similarities among some episodes in the plots, in the main character personal traits, and in the diminishing representation of the natives. All of these associations also show ideological commonalities between the literary works as well as some of the qualities that later became an important component of the Uruguayan identity.
Las relaciones intertextuales entre la novela Caramuru (Z 1848?),' de Alejandro Magarifos Cervantes, y 0 Caramuru, poema epico del fraile portuguds Jose de Santa Rita Durso (1781),2 reflejan el profundo relacionamiento cultural y politico del Uruguay con Brasil. Ademas, la lectura de esta novela demuestra, mss especificamente, una clara inclinaci6n hacia el Brasil, por parte del escritor uruguayo, en el contexto de la "Guerra Grande" (1839-51), epoca en la cual el Uruguay corrid el riesgo de desaparecer como pais independiente. De cumplirse esta eventualidad, las probabilidades eran las de que quedara unido al Brasil o a la Argentina. Paradojicamente, en medio de un ambiente pautado por incertidumbres y dudas con respecto a la supervivencia del estado independiente, se empez6 a gestar un imaginario nacional uruguayo2