Almansa 300 years later

Today is the commemoration of the Battle of Almansa. The victory of the Spanish Empire was a major step in the consolidation of Spain under the Bourbons. With the main pro-Habsburg army in Spain destroyed, the duc d'Anjou regained the initiative and recovered Valencia. After the victory, the Nueva Planta decrees established Spanish as only the official language, starting a repression against the Catalan language (my mother tongue) that we are still nowadays trying to recover.

The city of Xàtiva was burned, and its name changed to San Felipe in order to punish it. In memory of these facts, nowadays the portrait of the monarch still hangs upside down in the local museum of L'Almodí.

Some webs like Softcatalà are face-down today in commemoration of this day. Today Vicent Partal, one of the icons in modern Catalan journalism, was running an article on the commemoration. I translated the beginning:
We are here three hundred years later. Here we are valencian men and women that descent from the maulets that fought in Almansa, supporters of General Basset and the people from Xàtiva that resisted when Felipe V (bad day he was born) ordered to burn it until the basis. Here we are. Three hundred years after, here we are, valencians that speak a language that the winners of Almasa persecuted, the language that makes us different and unique in this global world that we live and that makes us equal to all those people that when we say "Bon dia" (Good day in Catalan language) we answer saying "Bon dia". Here we are.
The 300 years later Spain is still a monarchy ruled by the same bourbons what won that battle. In Spain, you can face criminal charges for criticizing the royal family.
jordi Wednesday 25 April 2007 - 2:24 pm | | Default

thirteen comments

Juanjo Marin

I don’t understand why you talk about “the victory of the Spanish Empire” because this battle is not about the Spanish Empire against any other Empire, it’s about Habsburg against Bourbons; So it was the vitory of the Bourbons party.

Juanjo Marin, (Email ) - 25-04-’07 15:20

300 years ! Time to forgive ?

M.Pomme, - 25-04-’07 15:24
Toni Hermoso Pulido

300 years! It’s time to be sovereign again…

Toni Hermoso Pulido, (Email ) - 25-04-’07 15:52

Who tells you that you cannot speak agains monarchy? That is a lie. You won’t find an article in any Spanish law ruling you against that. This is something that tell you those people trying to think that you are still living under Franco dictatorship, when you actually live under theirs.

alfec, - 25-04-’07 16:08

To think that someone is different because they don’t answer “Bon Dia”… To refer to “the victory of the Spanish Empire” to the quarrel between the successors of the Spanish Throne (none of them actually “castillian”, “catalonian” or any other spanish nationality, one was french and the other german: whoever had won, there still would have been a Spanish Empire, just the towns burnt to ashes would have been different)… a really sad post is yours.

1052, (Email ) - 25-04-’07 16:22

Ausburg were not an ideal option for their supporters in the Crown of Aragon either, remember Conde Duque de Olivares… but finally they decided that could be a better choice rather than Bourbons, specially if we also remember the consequences in present Northern Catalonia after the Treaty of the Pyrenees, where Catalan language and institutions had been banned, despite Louis XIV had promised not to do so.
In the end, the problem for the Iberian territories of the former Crown of Aragon (Aragon, Principality of Catalonia or Kingdom of Valencia) was not which king to choose, but the very imperialism and centralistic attitude of the Crown of Castile (latter known as Kingdom of Spain) and the Kingdom of France (latter known as Republic of France). For instance, Pau Claris had unsuccessfully tried a Catalan Republic during the XVIIth century.

Nowadays, the preferred weapons of the French-Spanish army is their control of the media… But, this control is actually eroding, as you can see, thanks to Catalan people freely accessing to Internet.

Maulet, - 25-04-’07 18:54
Els catalans no tenim rei

About the King of Spain:
El Rey Juan Carlos: ¿Figura intocable?
Juan Carlos King: An untouchable person?

Els catalans no tenim rei, - 25-04-’07 19:24
Marc B.

Alfec, your are lying:

Ley Orgánica 10/1995, de 23 de noviembre, del Código Penal.

Artículo 490.

3. El que calumniare o injuriare al Rey o a cualquiera de sus ascendientes o descendientes, a la Reina consorte o al consorte de la Reina, al Regente o a algún miembro de la Regencia, o al Príncipe heredero de la Corona, en el ejercicio de sus funciones o con motivo u ocasión de éstas, será castigado con la pena de prisión de seis meses a dos años si la calumnia o injuria fueran graves, y con la de multa de seis a doce meses si no lo son.

Some Catalan knows which is the real meaning of “calumniare o injuriare” in the Spanish sense.

Marc B., - 25-04-’07 21:37
Juanjo Marin

Stories about purity of blood are in general ridiculous. There exceptions, like Icelanders for example. However, I don’t think people from Almansa that speaks Catalan are only descent from Maulets. Are there any special reason of state that ?. It’s not impossible to find descents from Bourbons that speaks Catalan as his/her mother tongue, although not a father-to-son descendent [1]

[1] . You can find more articles on Internet that explain similar things.

Juanjo Marin, (Email ) - 25-04-’07 23:53
Toni Hermoso Pulido

Juanjo, I do not know if anyone follows you :)
By the way, just for your information and enjoyment, my family is native from Andalusia, where you seem to be working, and I’m Catalan independentist. I deeply respect other cultures and countries, and I also love to decide by myself. So, I would rather not having people like you deciding upon the will of my close people. Please, try not to think in terms of borders created by blood and fire.

Toni Hermoso Pulido, (Email ) - 26-04-’07 01:36
Juanjo Marin

I think you misunderstood my comments or I explained myself very bad. In my first comment I told about the term “the victory of the Spanish Empire” was inadecuated and on my second comment I express my opinion about Vicent Partal article that it seems to me that is a kind of “purity of blood” statement:

“Here we are valencian men and women that descent from the maulets that fought in Almansa” …“here we are, valencians that speak a language that the winners of Almansa persecuted”

You are not direct descent of Catalan people, but you’re and feel Catalan and I supposed you speak Catalan, right ?. So, why on earth you tell me “Please, try not to think in terms of borders created by blood and fire.” but you don’t say anything about the Vicent Partal. It’s me who is against the borders created by blood and fire that Mr Partal wants to trace for the use of Catalan language.

I haven’t say anything about the will of your close people and, by the way, I think that “people like you” sounds despective…

Juanjo Marin, (Email ) - 26-04-’07 17:17
Toni Hermoso Pulido

Juanjo, I apologize if I have been rude to you. As far as you agree with the principle of self-determination for our respective countries, we will be in good terms.
Catalan nationalism is rarely associated to what you talk about blood purity, simply because it makes little sense, specially in present-day society, where the Catalan Countries are made up with people coming not only from all around the Iberian peninsula, but also from all around the world. So, Vicent Partal is not referring to what you have thought about, but to the challenges of Valencian society. I could also explain you much about this topic; I know it is particularly hard for Spaniards who have been grown up with post-Francoism prejudices to understand it at first…
I lament your comments about Catalan language, specially when nowadays pro-Spanish authorities in Valencian Country and Spain are trying to eradicate it in the media.
About the borders, by the way, there is not any Catalan army who could threat the Spanish Kingdom currently… sadly, there have been too many Spanish army members who have been repeatedly menacing Catalans because we do simply want to decide by ourselves.
¡ Un abrazo y viva Andalucía libre ( !

Toni Hermoso Pulido, (Email ) - 29-04-’07 03:33
Juanjo Marin

OK, I accept your apologies, there is no reason to be rude, we’re both civilized people :-).

Surely Vicent Partal is a smart person, but this kind of speech is not of my taste. Every language only belongs to their speakers. When people try to use or forbid a language for political reasons is always disgusting. For example, the fight about the name of Catalan/Valencian/Majorcan language is ridiculous, this language is most important than that.

IMHO, you don’t have to be afraid of the army, as far as you want to get independence with peaceful way. I’m not for Catalan independence because I don’t perceive any reason to support this movement I don’t perceive any kind of oppression against Catalan people and I feel that Catalan people is free, and for the same reason I’m not for Andalusian independence, but I’m not against of people who has a different perception of that.

Una abraçada amb visca la llibertat !

Juanjo Marin, (Email ) - 29-04-’07 09:59
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