My objective is to understand the treatment of violence in La Araucana, taking into account the different moral burdens that accompanies the representation of violent episodes, such as battles, duels and killings. From here, I review the concept of varietas linked to the classical tradition and the most important epic model for Alonso de Ercilla, Orlando furioso (1532) by Ludovico Ariosto. The body of the article consists of a detailed analysis of the application of varietas in canto VI of the first part of the poem (1569), particularly in its use of different styles to refer, in accordance with decorum, both heroic acts and ungodly and shameful acts in the battle of the slope of Andalicán. The conclusions guide us towards the political objectives of Ercilla, framed in the justice that should prevail in the war of conquest, an aspect that links the poem with the genre of mirrors of princes. At this point, I address the critic controversy surrounding "lo escondido" (I, 4) and connect the aesthetic proposal of La Araucana with the personal ambitions of the young poet in his career as a counselor and diplomat of Felipe II.