Crown of Aragon
The Crown of Aragon was a composite monarchy nowadays referred to as a confederation of individual polities or kingdoms ruled by one king, with a personal and dynastic union of the Kingdom of Aragon and the County of Barcelona. At the height of its power in the 14th and 15th centuries, the Crown of Aragon was a thalassocracy controlling a large portion of present-day eastern Spain, parts of what is now southern France, a Mediterranean "empire" which included the Balearic Islands, Corsica, Malta, Southern Italy and parts of Greece; the component realms of the Crown were not united politically except at the level of the king, who ruled over each autonomous polity according to its own laws, raising funds under each tax structure, dealing separately with each Corts or Cortes. Put in contemporary terms, it has sometimes been considered that the different lands of the Crown of Aragon functioned more as a confederation than as a single kingdom. In this sense, the larger Crown of Aragon must not be confused with one of its constituent parts, the Kingdom of Aragon, from which it takes its name.
In 1469, a new dynastic familial union of the Crown of Aragon with the Crown of Castile by the Catholic Monarchs, joining what contemporaries referred to as "the Spains" led to what would become the Kingdom of Spain under King Philip II. The Crown existed until it was abolished by the Nueva Planta decrees issued by King Philip V in 1716 as a consequence of the defeat of Archduke Charles in the War of the Spanish Succession. Formally, the political center of the Crown of Aragon was Zaragoza, where kings were crowned at La Seo Cathedral. The'de facto' capital and leading cultural and economic centre of the Crown of Aragon was Barcelona, followed by Valencia. Palma was an additional important city and seaport; the Crown of Aragon included the Kingdom of Aragon, the Principality of Catalonia, the Kingdom of Valencia, the Kingdom of Majorca, the Kingdom of Sicily, the Kingdom of Naples and Kingdom of Sardinia. For brief periods the Crown of Aragon controlled Montpellier, Provence and the twin Duchy of Athens and Neopatras in Latin Greece.
The countries that are today known as Spain and Portugal spent the Middle Ages after 722 in an intermittent struggle called the Reconquista. This struggle pitted the northern Christian kingdoms against the Islamic taifa petty kingdoms of the South and against each other. In the Late Middle Ages, the expansion of the Aragonese Crown southwards met with the Castilian advance eastward in the region of Murcia. Afterward, the Aragonese Crown focused on the Mediterranean, acting as far as Greece and Barbary, whereas Portugal, which completed its Reconquista in 1249, would focus on the Atlantic Ocean. Mercenaries from the territories in the Crown, known as almogàvers participated in the creation of this Mediterranean "empire", found employment in countries all across southern Europe; the Crown of Aragon has been considered an empire which ruled in the Mediterranean for hundreds of years, with the power to set rules over the entire sea. It was indeed, at its height, one of the major powers in Europe.
However, its different territories were only connected through the person of the monarch, an aspect of empire seen as early as Achaemenid Persia. A modern historian, Juan de Contreras y Lopez de Ayala, Marqués de Lozoya described the Crown of Aragon as being more like a confederacy than a centralised kingdom, let alone an empire. Nor did official documents refer to it as an empire; the Crown of Aragon originated in 1137, when the Kingdom of Aragon and the County of Barcelona merged by dynastic union upon the marriage of Petronilla of Aragon and Raymond Berenguer IV of Barcelona. This union respected the existing parliaments of both territories; the combined state was known as Regno, Dominio et Corona Aragonum et Catalonie, as Corona Regum Aragoniae, Corona Aragonum or Aragon. This was due to the reduction of Catalan influence, the renunciation of the family rights of the counts of Barcelona in Occitania, the extinction of the House of Barcelona in 1410; the monarchs denominated themselves de Aragon, Aragon became prominent as an Iberian kingdom linked to the House of Jiménez which ruled over Navarre, Castile and Galicia and Aragon.
Petronilla's father King Ramiro, "The Monk", raised in the Saint Pons de Thomières Monastery, Viscounty of Béziers as a Benedictine monk was the youngest of three brothers. His brothers Peter I and Alfonso I El Batallador had bravely fought against Castile for hegemony in the Iberian peninsula. After the death of Alfonso I, the Aragonese nobility that campaigned close him feared being overwhelmed by the influence of Castile, and so, Ramiro was forced to proclaim himself King of Aragon. He married Agnes, sister of the Duke of Aquitaine and betrothed his only daughter to Raymond Berengar IV of Barcelona, member of o
Morella is an ancient walled city located on a hill-top in the province of Castellón, Valencian Community, Spain. The town is the capital and administrative centre of the comarca of Els Ports, in the historic Maestrat region. There are traces of settlement by the Iberians, succeeded by the Greeks and Romans and the Moors. From the early 17th century to the Spanish Civil War, the town was fought over, due to its strategic situation between the Ebro and the coastal plain of Valencia. Morella is part of the Taula del Sénia free association of municipalities; every six years the citizens celebrate the Sexenni, a commemoration of the town's recovery from the plague in the seventeenth century. Tourism now plays an important part in the local economy, along with agriculture. In the 20th century the town and surrounding area became depopulated, a trend that has only been reversed in the early 21st century; the population of Morella in 2008 was 2,854, having declined from a figure of 7,335 in 1900. One of the typical gastronomic products of Morella is sweets known as flaons.
Local bakeries are renowned for a number of other traditional pastries and sweets, like mantecadas, prepared in the ancient way. Prehistoric remains in the area include cave paintings in Morella la Vella and Bronze Age graves at Hostal Nou; the Greeks established a treasury at Morella, but the area became the scene of conflict between the Carthaginians and the Roman Empire during the Punic Wars. The town was Romanized and became part of the province of Tarragona; the Moors took the town in 714. El Cid is reputed to have rebuilt the castle which dominates the town and in 1084 he is supposed to have fought in the service of Yusuf al-Mu'taman ibn Hud and defeated Sancho Ramírez of Aragon at the Battle of Morella. In 1117, Sancho captured Morella, but it was recaptured by the Moors and only subdued by Blasco de Alagon in 1232. Following Blasco's death in 1239, James I of Aragon established a royal garrison in the city and awarded the inhabitants the title of "Faithful". Morella sided with Philip V during the War of the Spanish Succession in the early eighteenth century and became the centre of a military and political district.
During the Napoleonic Wars, the citizens rose up against the invading forces and the town was captured for Spain in 1813 by Francisco Javier de Elío. In the Carlist Wars of the nineteenth century Morella became the headquarters of the forces of Ramon Cabrera; the town was captured by forces of General Franco in April 1938, towards the end of the Spanish Civil War. Republican guerillas held out in the surrounding mountains until 1956. In the 1960s and 70s many people left the town for work opportunities in the cities and many of the local small industries died, but a slow revitalization has taken place since the transition of Spain to democracy. In the late seventeenth century, Morella was affected by the plague. After twenty years of suffering, the citizens brought a statue of the Virgin Mary from the Sanctuary of Vallivana, 24 kilometres away, at the feet of the Serra de Vallivana range, processed it through the streets, it is said that the plague disappeared from the city and, to remember this, every six years the Sexenni festival takes place for nine days in late August.
The virgin is carried in procession and the traditional town guilds perform ancient dances in her honour. The festivities in 2006 were the first of the 21st century. Morella's municipal area is divided into subdivisions; these are: La Vespa, Els Castellons, Dena Primera del Riu, Dena Segona del Riu, La Font d'en Torres, Els Llivis, Morella la Vella, El Coll i el Moll, La Pobla d'Alcolea, Dena de la Roca, Herbeset, Xiva de Morella and Vallivana. Morella occupies a strategic position between the plains of the river Ebro to the north west and the coastal plains of Valencia and Castellon. Access from the north west lies through the passes of Torre Miró 1,259 metres and Querol 1,020 metres; the old town is enclosed by 2.5 kilometres of ancient stone walls, pierced at seven points by gates or portals. The river Bergantes skirts the southern boundaries of the town as it descends towards the Guadalope which joins the Ebro; the climate is high mountain Mediterranean, with cool summers and cold winters with frequent frosts and heavy snow.
During the winter months the north east mistral, which blows in this area, causes wind chill factors of as much as -20 °C. Morella is now a tourist destination, with many historic buildings and restaurants, it is listed as one of the most beautiful towns in Spain. Some of the top sights to see in Morella are the Castillo de Morella, the aqueduct, La Iglesia de Santa María Morella, Convento de San Francesc Morella and the Morella Museo Temps de Dinosaures. Although not as important as in the past and woollen goods still plays a part in the local economy. One of its most famous products is the Morella blanket, which has a unique design, with a range of colour combinations and horizontal stripes. Agriculture poultry and pig production are important in the surrounding area.with craft products and valued black truffles which are traded at seasonal markets during the winter. Ports Ports de Morella Maestrat Vallivana Web oficial de l'ajuntament de Morella Paco González Ramírez, País Valencià, poble a poble, comarca a comarca Institut Valencià d'Estadística.
Portal de la Direcció General d'Administració Local de la Generalitat
Furs of Valencia
Furs of Valencia were the laws of the Kingdom of Valencia during most of the Middle Ages and early modern Europe. The laws were a series of charters which, worked as a modern Constitution does now. Thus, they defined the position of and checks and balances between the Royal House, the nobility, the Catholic ecclesiastic and the judicial procedures; the first codifications are based in the Usages of Barcelona, Costums of Lleida, the Furs of Aragon. They were promulgated by the first King of Valencia, James "the Conqueror", in 1261 at the newly created Valencian Parliament; the Furs were valid for more than four centuries, until they were abolished by means of the Nueva Planta decrees signed by Philip V of Castile in 1707. Following the agreed amendment to the Statute of Autonomy of the Valencian Community in 2006, some distinct usages of the civil law used by the Furs are scheduled to regain binding legal authority in this territory. Kingdom of Valencia List of Valencian monarchs Generalitat Valenciana Valencian Parliament
War of the Spanish Succession
The War of the Spanish Succession was a European conflict of the early 18th century, triggered by the death of the childless Charles II of Spain in November 1700. His closest heirs were members of the Austrian Habsburg and French Bourbon families. Charles left an undivided Monarchy of Spain to Louis XIV's grandson Philip, proclaimed King of Spain on 16 November 1700. Disputes over separation of the Spanish and French crowns and commercial rights led to war in 1701 between the Bourbons of France and Spain and the Grand Alliance, whose candidate was Archduke Charles, younger son of Leopold I, Holy Roman Emperor. By the end of 1706, Allied victories in Italy and the Low Countries forced the French back within their borders but they were unable to make a decisive breakthrough. Control of the sea allowed the Allies to conduct successful offensives in Spain, but lack of popular support for Archduke Charles meant they could not hold territory outside the coastal areas. Conflict extended to European colonies in North America, where it is known as Queen Anne's War, the West Indies as well as minor struggles in Colonial India.
Related conflicts include Rákóczi's War of Independence in Hungary, funded by France and the 1704–1710 Camisard rebellion in South-East France, funded by Britain. When his elder brother Joseph died in 1711, Charles succeeded him as Emperor, undermining the primary driver behind the war, to prevent Spain being united with either France or Austria; the 1710 British election returned a new government committed to ending it and with the Allied war effort now dependent on British financing, this forced the others to make peace. The war ended with the 1713 Treaty of Utrecht, followed in 1714 by the treaties of Rastatt and Baden. In return for confirmation as King of Spain, Philip V renounced his place in the line of succession to the French throne, both for himself and his descendants; the Dutch Republic was granted its Barrier Fortresses, while France acknowledged the Protestant succession in Britain and agreed to end support for the Stuart exiles. In the longer term, the commercial provisions of Utrecht confirmed Britain's status as the leading European maritime and commercial power, while the Dutch lost their position as the pre-eminent economic power in Asia and the war marked their decline as a first-rank power.
Other long-term impacts include the creation of a centralised Spanish state and the acceleration of the break-up of the Holy Roman Empire into larger and more powerful German principalities. In 1665 Charles II became the last male Habsburg King of Spain. In 1670, England agreed to support the rights of Louis XIV to the Spanish throne in the Treaty of Dover, while the terms of the 1688 Grand Alliance committed England and the Dutch Republic to back Leopold. In 1700, the Spanish Empire included possessions in Italy, the Spanish Netherlands, the Philippines and the Americas and though no longer the dominant great power, it remained intact. Since acquisition of the Empire by either the Austrian Habsburgs or French Bourbons would change the balance of power in Europe, its inheritance led to a war that involved most of the European powers; the 1700-1721 Great Northern War is considered a connected conflict, since it impacted the involvement of states such as Sweden, Denmark–Norway and Russia. During the 1688–1697 Nine Years War, armies had increased in size from an average of 25,000 in 1648 to over 100,000 by 1697, a level unsustainable for pre-industrial economies.
The 1690s marked the lowest point of the Little Ice Age, a period of colder and wetter weather that drastically reduced crop yields. The Great Famine of 1695-1697 killed between 15-25% of the population in present-day Scotland, Finland, Latvia and Sweden, with an estimated two million deaths in France and Northern Italy; the 1697 Treaty of Ryswick was therefore the result of mutual exhaustion and Louis XIV's acceptance that France could not achieve its objectives without allies. Leopold refused to sign and did so with extreme reluctance in October 1697. Unlike France or Austria, the Crown of Spain could be inherited through the female line; this allowed Charles' sisters Maria Theresa and Margaret Theresa to pass their rights as rulers onto the children of their respective marriages with Louis XIV and Emperor Leopold. Despite being opponents in the recent Nine Years War, Louis XIV and William III of England now attempted to resolve the Succession by diplomacy. In 1685, Maria Antonia, daughter of Leopold and Margaret, married Maximillian Emanuel of Bavaria and they had a son, Joseph Ferdinand.
The 1698 Treaty of the Hague or First Partition Treaty between France and the Dutch Republic made the six year old heir to the bulk of the Spanish Monarchy and divided its European territories between France and Austria. The Spanish refused to accept the division of their Empire and on 14 November 1698, Charles published his Will, making Joseph Ferdinand heir to an independent and undivided Spanish monarchy; when he died of smallpox in February 1699, a new solution was required. This was of doubtful legality but France and the Nethe
Podemos (Spanish political party)
Podemos is a political party in Spain founded in January 2014 by political scientist Pablo Iglesias in the aftermath of the 15-M Movement protests against inequality and corruption. Podemos is a left-wing populist party that seeks to address the problems of inequality and economic malaise that followed in the wake of the European debt crisis. Podemos has called for a renegotiation of austerity measures and seeks to curtail the Treaty of Lisbon; the term "populist" is sometimes used by political opponents to refer to the party in a pejorative way. Podemos is the second largest political party in Spain by number of members after the People's Party, it became the third largest party within the first 20 days it allowed membership, with 100,000 signing up in that period and its membership grew to more than 487,000. In the 2014 European Parliament elections on 25 May 2014, Podemos received 7.98% of the national vote, with 1,200,000 votes cast, electing five Members of the European Parliament. At the elections for the national parliament on 20 December 2015, Podemos received 21% of the vote and became the third largest party in the parliament, with 69 out of 350 seats.
On 9 May 2016, Podemos formed the electoral alliance Unidos Podemos with United Left and minor left-wing parties. In 2018, the party joined Maintenant le Peuple. Podemos came from the aftermath of the Indignados movement against inequality and corruption in 2011; the group was inspired by the populist leaders of Latin America's "Pink tide", which included Venezuela's Hugo Chávez and Bolivia's Evo Morales. Its origin can be found in the manifesto Mover ficha: convertir la indignación en cambio político, presented over the weekend of 12 to 13 January 2014, signed by thirty intellectuals and personalities, such as Juan Carlos Monedero, associate professor of political science at the Complutense University of Madrid. Podemos' manifesto argued that it was necessary to create a party list for the European Parliament elections that year, with the goal of opposing the dominant policies of the European Union from the left. Though he was not one of the signatories of the document, on 14 January it was announced that Pablo Iglesias, a professor of political science at the UCM and a TV presenter, was to head the movement.
The movement was organized by the party Anti-Capitalist Left, the Spanish section of the Trotskyist Fourth International, which had written the Mover ficha manifesto in its internal documentation, designing the stages to launch the new movement. One of the points highlighted by Iglesias was the derogation of the 135th article of the Constitution, made in 2011 by the major parties People's Party and Spanish Socialist Workers' Party, they demanded Spain exit from NATO and support self-determination rights. The Podemos movement was launched on 16 January 2014 in the Teatro del Barrio in the Lavapiés neighbourhood of Madrid. A press conference was given, with the attendance of hundreds of people, at which spoke Pablo Iglesias, its fundamental goal was to oppose the austerity policies. In order to run in the European elections of 2014, the members of the bare bones of Podemos set themselves three conditions: to receive the support of at least 50,000 people; the 50,000 signatures were obtained in less than 24 hours and the Podemos website crashed due to the high traffic.
In August 2015, Podemos endorsed Jeremy Corbyn's campaign in the Labour Party leadership election. The party's international secretariat released a statement saying: "In Podemos we share Jeremy Corbyn's view that another Europe is not just possible but necessary", it added: "Against the irresponsibility of the troika and the Eurogroup, against the Europe of financial lobbies and puppet representatives, a new democratic and social Europe is emerging, Jeremy Corbyn's victory would be a great step in that direction". On 25 May 2014 Podemos entered candidates for the 2014 European Parliament election, polling with 7.98% of the national vote and thus was awarded five seats out of 54. The party's MEPs joined the European United Left–Nordic Green Left group. Regarding the election, Pablo Iglesias was described as pessimistic by El País: "We have lost these European elections, they have been won by the People's Party. We cannot be happy about this", he stated that his objective is to "move forward until we throw the PP and the PSOE out of power" and that "e will now work with other parties from the south of Europe to make it cl
Joaquín Francisco Puig Ferrer, known as Ximo Puig, is a Spanish politician who has served as leader of the Socialist Party of the Valencian Country, a regional branch of the PSOE, since March 2012. He is the current President of the Valencian Government. Puig was born in Castellón. A journalist by profession, he worked for the Antena 3 radio station, he was elected to the Corts Valencianes, the Valencian regional parliament, in the first democratic elections in 1983. He resigned his seat in 1986, when he was appointed Director General of Institutional relations and information in the Valencian regional administration, serving until 1995. In May 1995 he became mayor of his hometown of Morella, serving until 2012, when he resigned after becoming leader of the PSPV-PSOE. In the 2011 Spanish general election he was elected to the Congress of Deputies, representing Castellón Province. In Congress, he served as spokesman for the committee on industry and tourism. In March 2014 Puig won the PSPV-PSOE primary to be the party's candidate for President of the Valencian Government in the 2015 regional elections.
He received 68.8% of the votes in the primary. On 25 June 2015, he was invested President of the Valencian Government with the favourable votes of PSPV-PSOE, Podemos and Compromís, succeeding Alberto Fabra and putting an end to two decades of PP governments in the region
The Corts Valencianes known as Les Corts, are the main legislative body of the Generalitat Valenciana and therefore of the Valencian Country. The main location of the Corts is in the Palace of the Borgias in Valencia; the Corts has its origins in bodies established in the thirteenth century by King James I of Aragon. The modern institution was established in 1982 under the Valencian statute of autonomy of 1982; the current Corts were elected in 2015. Following the conquest and reign of James I of Aragon, the economic and military needs of the Crown of Aragon justified some meetings of the king with representatives of the three social classes, to obtain military or financial services; the economic needs justified those meetings, at the beginning of the sixteenth century, a stable institution called the Corts Valencianes had been established. Among the meetings which were held during the reign of James I, the most important was that of 7 April 1261 in Valencia, during which the king promulgated the Furs of Valencia, a series of charters equivalent to a modern constitution.
Proof of the economic importance of the corts for the crown is that the king promulgated the Furs in exchange for the sum of 48,000, which were paid to him by the city of Valencia, by the cities of the Horta de València which belonged to the clergy and to the nobility, by the towns of Castelló, Vilafamés, Onda, Llíria, Corbera and Gandia. At the time of those corts, King James established a rule for his successors obliging them to organise a general cort in Valencia at the beginning of each reign, in the first month after their entry into the city; this obligation was renewed during the corts of 1271, the corts were summoned by James I and by his son Peter III of Aragon. Those Corts were the only obligatory meetings, but the king summoned the corts on other occasions when required. In 1302, James II decided. During the corts of 1336, Peter IV confirmed this triennial meeting, by specifying that the corts were to meet every three years on All Saints' Day. During the thirteenth century and at the beginning of the fourteenth, the representations of the other cities in the Kingdom of Valencia were added, until the corts of 1239, during which the representations of various territories met constituting the corts of all the Kingdom.
From that moment, the most important cities always met, while others attended depending on the relevance to them of the subjects being discussed. However, the representation was important. For example, in the Corts of Valencia of 1510, the following towns were represented: Ademús, Alcoi, Alzira, Bocairent, Cabdet, Castelló, Cullera, Llíria, Ontinyent, Penàguila, Peníscola, València, Vila Joiosa, Vila-real, Xàtiva, Xèrica and Xixona. Half of the assemblies took place in Valencia cathedral; the Valencian Corts of 1418, fixed the duration of the corts at three years. In the middle of the fifteenth century, the Valencian institutions were definitively established. With the unification of the crowns of Castille and Aragon, the Valencian corts declined in importance and were less convened during the sixteenth century, a trend that continued in the seventeenth century; the last corts met in Valencia in 1645. After the War of the Spanish Succession and the new decree of 1707, the Kingdom of Valencia and its local rights were abolished.
The Corts Valencianes were not convened again until their reestablishment under the Statute of Autonomy of 1982. As of the coming into effect of the Statute of Autonomy, the Corts have operated like a modern representative legislature. Although meeting in the provincial capital of Valencia city, they have met in various towns around the Valencian community in recent years, an initiative, developed by the most recent legislatures; the first legislature in modern times was elected in May 1983. The Spanish Socialist Workers' Party won an absolute majority of votes and seats, with 51 of the 89 seats; however they lost their majority in 1987 and were forced to govern in coalition with the smaller United Left party. They won the 1991 elections with a majority of one seat. However, in the 1995 elections there was a swing to the right with the People's Party becoming the largest party with 42 seats and governing in coalition with the smaller Unió Valenciana; this lasted until the elections of 1999. Although they lost a seat in 2003, they strengthened their position in the elections of 2007 and 2011, winning a record 55 seats.
In the 2015 elections PP lost the majority, PSPV and Compromís are governing in coalition. Following the passing of the statute of autonomy of the Valencian Community, which established local government for the region, the Corts became the regional assembly, elected every four years by universal adult suffrage; the name originated in the historic Valencian Corts, however previous bodies of that name had different functions representing three institutions: the clergy, the military/nobility and the royal family. The Statute of Autonomy defines the Corts Valencianes in chapter II, title II, although there are references in other articles; the Statute indicates the composition of Corts, its functions, the basic principles of the electoral system, traces the general framework of the Statute of the Deputies. Laws which develop the Statute, the rules of the Corts Valencianes regulate t