As i promised, i keep you updated about the Spanish College of Arms. This organisation has now a website, so, you can check it.
I would love to see examples of the College’s work…is this available anywhere?
The Spanish College of Arms is new, but its work come from the collections of several galician heraldists, historians and collectors, and it is old and essentially old-fashioned. The idea of this organisation needs some development, and it will improve soon. I Totally agree with you. Some examples of the College works should be included, and i think there will be soon examples available in digital format. So, people will be able to see the quality of some works, and enjoy themselves. There will be available in a short future these examples, painted by galician authors. The style is good, and the works are marvellous, but i am afraid we are still discovering the digital era, lol. Anyway, there will be improvements, i think.
Great and I pray for the best for them.
P.S. It seems strange to me - and please correct me where needed - that the Kingdom of Spain no longer grants armorial achievements. It is a kingdom still, correct, so why the formal neglect? Just curious.
There is word in the offing that there will be a new Chronicler King of Arms for Spain after all. When this will actualy take place I have no idea as yet.
Everything is possible, but I really doubt that the King of Spain will appoint a Chronicler King of Arms. There is to say that all the matters concerning Nobility and Heraldry have been very neglected in Spain. Of course, this is my personal opinion. There should be a Cronista Rey de Armas in Spain. But the fact is that the last Cronista, Don Vicente de Cadenas y Vicent, was appointed straightaway by Franco without taking the proper and legal examinations, which was a bit odd. Moreover, Vicente de Cadenas did not support the current King of Spain. He always favoured the Carlista branch of Borbon-Parma, and had to go to exile at a point in his life. He lived in Italy for many years, from where he continued to issue certifications.
Later, there was a couple of regional Cronistas, one in Castilla-Leon, and other in Asturias, but both were invested by local authorities and only as advisors in municipal heraldry. We already know that one of them (Floresta) issued personal certifications, and probably keeps doing so. The council of state has forbidden him to do it. Also, this person urged the ministry of justice to appoint him Chronicler King of Arms of Spain, and his application was rejected in a very strong way, saying textually that â€œIt is not a priority in these times to have a Cronistaâ€.
In the past, there was a kind of college of cronistas, and there were several cronistas at the same time, and all of them had to take exams and be lawyers of great prestige. This was destroyed by the second republic, the civil war, and the era of Franco, with his many ambiguities. Franco appointed his own noblemen and gave noble titles. He also reinstated titles given by the Carlistas from the Borbon-Parma branch, a rival dynasty to the one which sits now on the throne of Spain. It is all very confusing.
The right thing would be to appoint a corps of qualified cronistas, and not only one, because this leads to corruption. The only alternative left now is self assumption, establishing your rights by executing a notarial act. This should not be this way, but it is for now.
Of course, there is other way to get a Coat of Arms in Spain. It is when the King in person makes you noble. But this is not at the reach of common or normal people. In thirty years, not more than 25 people have been given titles. The king does not give titles easily. Yes, if you have a title given by the King, your coat of arms will be included in the Spanish Gazette, signed by the King himself.
I do not think that there will be a Cronista anymore, at least for many years. But I hope I am wrong. I would really welcome a legally appointed Cronista. But a true one, not one of those semi-impostors who flourished under the loopholes of regional regulations.
Do you want the truth?
This is my personal opinion. The Spanish Monarchy is afraid to act as a Monarchy in many cases. There is a vast sector of Spain who is becoming increasingly apathetic or hostile about this institution. So, they are as neutral as they can be. Many people in Spain hates the nobility, and resurrect nobiliary institutions is seen in a very cautious way. I seriously doubt that a Cronista could be appointed. But if this happens, I will be happy. I wil tell you othe thing. The current king does not like Nobility.
Wait a couple of months I think you may be pleasantly surprised.
Well, i hope so. Anyway, now i feel very curious, and i am going to ask to a friend of mine who is well placed in the world of nobility and in relationship with the right circles, and i will ask him to confirm this.
Well, I have spoken with a friend of mine, quite well placed, and I am in a position to affirm that I seriously doubt that a Cronista will be appointed. But anything may happen, and I am a gambling man, so, I propose the following:
If Duncan is right, I will send him a box with 6 excellent bottles of Spanish wine, including 2 bottles of the wonderful albariÃ±o, a Galician wine famous among noblemen, artists, and politicians, straightaway from Spain to Scotland by courier.
If Duncan is wrong, I would like to receive a good bottle of whisky of his choice in Spain.
Well, Duncan, do you accept the challenge?
This can put a bit of emotion to the forum, lol
Oh Yes…..why not, your on luis :p
Very well, Duncan. Letâ€™s agree the terms. If an official Cronista of the Kingdom of Spain is appointed in the following six months, I will send the wine to Duncan. If not, he will send me the whisky.
While I personally think it would be nice for Spain to appoint new cronistas de armas, a couple of misconceptions ought to be corrected:
1. There’s nothing intrinsic in monarchy that implies the existence of regulated heraldry. Many monarchies do not have regulated systems of heraldry; many others historically have regulated only the arms of the nobility and left non-noble heraldry as a strictly private matter. If the Spanish government decides to appoint new cronistas, it should do so because they’re part of Spanish history, not because there’s it’s necessary as a monarchy that it do so.
2. We shouldn’t try to pound square pegs (non-British heraldic practices) into round holes (the British—including Irish—conception of the nature of arms). The rationale behind a grant ("I give you the right to bear the arms that I hereby assign to you") and a certification ("I certify that you have the right to bear the particular arms to which you have established your entitlement") is significant. Cronistas certify; they do not grant.
3. The laws and decrees on cronistas make clear that one of their principal responsibilities is genealogical verification having to do with noble status and titles; it’s not just armorial design and certification. It’s easy to see that a decision to appoint new cronistas could be interpreted as a statement about the Spanish government’s views on the importance of issues of nobility and privilege in today’s Spain; it might not be seen as a purely heraldic matter. (I take no position on the merits of the issue; as I’m not Spanish, it’s not my place. I merely point out that the question needs to be seen in a broader context than just the design and certification of arms.)
You do not need to be a Spaniard to have an opinion. Your opinion is more than welcome, and i take it into consideration. What i personally think is that Heraldry should be regulated in all countries. And of course, in Spain. Take into account that probably the two most prestigious monarchies of the world are the British and the Spanish. In the UK, the heraldic matters are regulated by the respective English and Scottish authorities. In Spain there is an alarming lack of regulations and rules. And my personal opinion is that there should be clear regulations. The position of the new spanish governments is not clear. They have always attacked the nobility. Vicente de Cadenas was a Cronista without power and a clear legal frame, and i dare say that many of his certifications are at least questionable. This happened because there was no ruling body able to put things right. For example: It is not clear that a Cronista could certify arms to people with no attachments to Spain, as he did. And i have read some of his certifications, and he used a quite biased language. For example, there are two words to express the word "seÃ±or" in English. They are: Sir, and Lord. We have only the word seÃ±or, and you can guess if you want to mean sir or lord only by the context. Cadenas and other cronistas used to write in english in certifications for foreigners: "I hereby certify… that the most illustrious lord Joe Bloggs….......". The right expression would be" the most illustrious sir". There is an example of this in the certification of arms of David Wooten, the webmaster of the American College of Heraldry, who displays the certification given by Cadenas in his website. The sentence "the most illustrious lord" is totally spurious, and plays intentionally with the ambiguity of translation. With respect to the certifications of others, such as Floresta or Altea, is just a scam. The SCA is not an heraldic authority, it is a private undertaking, and they register arms in good faith, and with a notary, and they will not trick people by using a perverted vocabulary to flatter the guy who pays the bill.
That is the reason why there ought to be a ruling heraldic body in Spain. Spain has an impressive heritage in this sense, and it should be protected properly, and not left in the hands of adventurers.
I personally doubt this government will consent to appoint a Cronista, but i would be personally delighted to send the wine to Scotland, as this would mean that some good might come out of the bad present situation.
What is the status of heraldry under Spanish law? Does it receive similar protection as under the current German system?
And i have read some of his certifications, and he used a quite biased language. For example, there are two words to express the word "seÃ±or" in English. They are: Sir, and Lord. We have only the word seÃ±or, and you can guess if you want to mean sir or lord only by the context. Cadenas and other cronistas used to write in english in certifications for foreigners: "I hereby certify… that the most illustrious lord Joe Bloggs….......". The right expression would be" the most illustrious sir".
Actually, there are three ways to translate seÃ±or, the third being "Mr." Translating "IlustrÃsimo SeÃ±or don JosÃ© Bloggs" as "the most illustrious Sir Joe Bloggs" would be just as bad as "Lord Joe Bloggs," since it would imply that Mr. Bloggs was a British knight. "Mr." in this case would more than suffice, and with a courtesy formula like "most illustrious" (which is merely formal and courteous in traditional Spanish but incredibly pompous in English) even the "Mr." would be omitted. (e.g., the Governor General of Canada is "Her Excellency the Right Honourable MichaÃ«lle Jean," not "H.E. the Rt. Hon. Miss....;" the US Secretary of Defense is "the Honorable Donald Rumsfeld," not "the Hon. Mr.....")
There is an example of this in the certification of arms of David Wooten, the webmaster of the American College of Heraldry, who displays the certification given by Cadenas in his website. The sentence "the most illustrious lord" is totally spurious, and plays intentionally with the ambiguity of translation.
I agree. I’m willing to give Cadenas the benefit of the doubt, on the assumption that his English may not have been good enough to understand the implications of "Lord" and "Sir" (of course, LuÃs may have better information on this point). But any native speaker of English whose Spanish is good enough to be translating cronistas’ certifications certainly knows what is implied by the choices among lord, sir, and mister.
When I was taking Spanish in high school a long time ago and for only one semester (all that was required then) we learned senor as ‘Mr." but we were also learning Mexican-Spanish and not Spanish-Spanish and Mr. Gomez told us as much.
So, my questions is in Spain is senor for all three or basically â€˜lordâ€™ or â€˜sirâ€™ and that in Mexican Spanish the word has come to also mean ‘Mr." just like in America some English words have different meanings than in British English?
Also is it possible that Spanish-Spanish has means â€˜Mr.â€™ or some equivalent for senor and that the â€˜Sirâ€™ (meaning knight in English) mistranslation would therefore be on the English side?
I ask as I always say â€˜thank you sirâ€™, or â€˜yes sirâ€™ to men older than I as a matter of respect. Now I donâ€™t imply that to mean knight, so does the Spanish senor (sir in this case) mean the same as my â€˜thank you sirâ€™ etc?