Compromise of Caspe

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Compromise of Caspe
Acta original del Compromiso de Caspe.jpg
Original deed of the compromise.
Date 29 March - 28 June 1412
Location Caspe, Aragon.
Participants Nine compromisarios (delegates) of the peninsular territories of the Crown of Aragon.
Outcome

The Compromise of Caspe made in 1412 was an act and resolution of parliamentary representatives of the constituent realms of the Crown of Aragon (the Kingdom of Aragon, Kingdom of Valencia, and Principality of Catalonia), meeting in Caspe, to resolve the interregnum following the death of King Martin of Aragon in 1410 without a legitimate heir.

The Aragonese succession laws at that time were based more on custom than any specific legislation, and even case law did not exist. All successions after the union of Catalonia with Aragon in 1137 had been to the eldest son, to the next younger brother, or to the only daughter. However, earlier successions indicated that agnates (males in the male line) of the Aragonese royal family had precedence over daughters and descendants of daughters; for example, Martin himself had succeeded over daughters of his late elder brother, King John I.

However, very distant agnates had lost out to the daughter of the late king in the 11th century, when Queen Petronilla succeeded over claims of the then agnates (second cousins or the like), the kings of Navarre.

J. N. Hillgarth writes: "Among the descendants by the male line, the closest relation to Martin was James II, Count of Urgell."[1] T. N. Bisson writes that "the issue was (or became) political rather than simply legal, a utilitarian question of which candidate with some dynastic claim would make the best king."[2]

Candidates[edit]

The major candidates for succession were:

Family tree[edit]

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
James II of Aragon
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Alfonso IV of Aragon
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Peter IV of Ribagorza
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Peter IV of Aragon
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
James I of Urgell
 
Alfonso I of Gandia
 
John of Ribagorza
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Peter II of Urgell
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
John I of Aragon
 
Martin of Aragon
 
Eleanor of Aragon
 
Isabella of Aragon
 
James II of Urgell
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Yolande of Aragon
 
Martin I of Sicily
 
Ferdinand of Castile
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Louis of Anjou
 
Frederic of Luna
 

Interregnum 1410-1412[edit]

Salvador Vinegra's depiction of the deliberations

The parties had agreed to a parliamentary process to resolve the issue, but coordinating deliberations between the cortes (parliaments) of Aragon, Valencia and Catalonia was made difficult by their diverging interests. Thus, a general cortes was demanded by the governor of Catalonia to meet in Montblanch, but the meeting was delayed and ended up in Barcelona, starting in October 1410 and only being Cortes of the Principality of Catalonia.[3] As the Cortes dragged on, the situation became violent.

Antón de Luna, an Aragonese supporter of Count James II of Urgell, assassinated the Archbishop of Zaragoza, García Fernández de Heredía (supporter of Louis of Anjou).[4] This event damaged the candidacy of James of Urgell and gave strength to the candidacy of Ferdinand of Castile (regent of Castile and therefore commanding a nearby army with which protected his allies). There was fighting in the streets, especially between partisans of Aragon and Valencia. The conflict divided the Kingdom of Aragon, with two rival Cortes meeting: one favorable to Ferdinand of Castile in Alcañiz, and another favorable to James II, Count of Urgell in Mequinenza (but this one was not recognized by the Catalan parliament at Tortosa).[5] The same occurred in Valencia, with Cortes in Traiguera and Vinaròs respectively.[6] Furthermore, in 1410-1412 Ferdinand's troops entered Aragon and Valencia to fight the Urgellists. The Trastamarist victory at the Battle of Morvedre on 27 February 1412 finally left Valencia on their hands.

Conflicts and deliberations[edit]

Proclamation of Ferdinand I as king of Aragon, by Dióscoro Puebla

Pope Bendict XIII (Avignon) intervened and proposed a smaller group of nine compromisarios (negotiators).[3] The Trastamarist parliament of Alcañiz agreed with the proposition, which was finally accepted by a Catalan-Aragonese board of fourteen Aragonese Trastamarists and five varied Catalan emissaries: the agreement known as the Alcañiz Concord of 15 February 1412.[7][8] But a few days later, the Alcañiz parliament chose not only the three compromisarios from Aragon but also the three Catalan and the three Valencian compromisarios too.[9] The angry complaints among the Catalan and Valencian parliamentarians for this abuse were ignored, targeting the peaceful discussions sought since 1410;[10][7][11] and equally the complaints of James of Urgell and Louis of Anjou.[12][13][14]

The appointed compromisarios met in Caspe, to choose the next king.[15][16] The majority of historians have agreed with the account of the election by historian Jerónimo Zurita. Zurita wrote his Anales de la Corona de Aragón from the original records, which he bequeathed to the house of the General Deputation of Aragon in 1576 (they were lost or burned during political disorders in the 19th century).[17] According to Zurita, the compromisarios had conflicting views about the succession to the deceased Martí I, and they voted differently as well.[18][16][19][20] The votes were cast on Friday, 24 June 1412, and recorded on 25 June.[21] Vincent Ferrer was the first one to speak; in a long speech, he voted for Ferdinand, and then Ram, his brother Bonifaci, Gualbes, Bardaixí, and Aranda simply joined him. Sagarriga, Vallseca, and Bertran voted differently, giving their own reasons.[18][22][23][24]

Portrait of Ferdinand of Castile, proclaimed king after the Compromise.

Kingdom of Aragon delegates:

Kingdom of Valencia delegates:

Principality of Catalonia delegates:

On 28 June 28, Ferdinand of Castile was proclaimed king by Vicent Ferrer in a public speech also recorded.

Revisionism[edit]

In recent years, three Aragonese historians (José Ángel Sesma Muñoz, Carlos Laliena, and Cristina Monterde) rejected Zurita's account, arguing that no contemporary sources confirm the existence of any secret ballot. Sesma claimed in 2011 that all nine compromisarios, despite their different preferences, agreed unanimously to select Ferdinand.[25] He repeated this view in 2012 with Laliena and Monterde.[26] Their main argument is that the official notarized deed of proclamation, issued on 25 June 1412, doesn't mention any results of the supposed election. Furthermore, they quoted testimonies (but not the full statements) from those who were present at the ceremony of proclamation on 28 June, such as Melchor de Gualbes, saying that the three Catalan compromisarios had declared that "they had acted freely and had not been under any pressure" and that at the end "everybody would be of one opinion".[27] As of 2013, there are no new published works that support this new theory.

Already in 2012, this point of view had been refuted by historian Ernest Belenguer, who called attention to the point that in this kind of elections (as with papal conclaves), the results of the ballots are not published, therefore one cannot infer a unanimous election only from this kind of deed. He also mentioned that even Trastamara's official chronicler Lorenzo Valla said in the 15th century that there were very different opinions among the compromisarios.[28] Furthermore, Belenguer cited other authors who in the 17th century had seen the same documents as Zurita, such as Uztarroz and Dormer, and reported the same account as Zurita of the preferences stated by every one of the nine compromisarios.[17]

Aftermath[edit]

Reenaction of the Compromise

Initially James II of Urgell accepted the sentence and even swore allegiance to the new king, but several months after revolted himself in May 1413 but was unsuccessful to mobilize more nobles after two years of fights and battles. There were some uprisings in support of James in Valencia and Catalonia and James himself lead sorties out from his domain in Urgell. James's supporters were defeated in battle on 25 June 1413 outside of Lleida. Antón de Luna enlisted the support of Gascon and English troops who invaded at Jaca, but they were defeated on 10 July 1413 before he was able to join James's army.[29]

In August, Ferdinand began the siege of Balaguer. Meanwhile, Antón de Luna had organized defenses in Huesca; however, the Castle of Montearagon was taken on 11 August, and he and his troops fled to Loarre Castle. Finally, in October 1413 James surrendered at his city: Balaguer. The following January, Loarre Castle fell, and the rebellion was over. The County of Urgell was dissolved in 1413 and the area came under the royal domain of the county of Barcelona, but were shared out among the Trastámara's supporters.

With the selection of a younger prince of the Castilian Royal House of Trastamara, the Aragonese Crown became increasingly drawn into the sphere of influence of more powerful Castile. About 50 years after the Compromise, with the marriage of Ferdinand I's grandson Ferdinand II to Queen Isabella of Castile, Aragon became the junior partner in a dynastic union that would become the modern Spanish state.

Chalice of the Compromise of Caspe.

See also[edit]

Sources[edit]

  1. ^ Hillgarth, Jocelyn Nigel (1978) The Spanish Kingdoms 1250-1516 volume 2 1410-1516: Castilian hegemony p 229 ISBN 0-19-822531-8
  2. ^ Bissonm Thomas N. (1991) The Medieval Crown of Aragon: a short history, pp 135-6, ISBN 0-19-820236-9
  3. ^ a b Earenfight, Theresa (2003) "Caspe, Compromise of" page 208 in Gerli, E. Michael (editor) (2003) Medieval Iberia: An Encyclopedia Routledge, New York, ISBN 0-415-93918-6
  4. ^ Rábade Obradó, María del Pilar; Ramírez Vaquero, Eloísa; Utrilla Utrilla, Juan F. (2005) La dinámica política p 458. Ediciones Istmo
  5. ^ Salom, Jaime (1995) Jerusalén, hora cero: nueve brindis por un rey p 172. Editorial Fundamentos
  6. ^ Julio Valdeón 2001, pp. 105-106.
  7. ^ a b Arnau Cònsul 2012, pp. 34-35.
  8. ^ Esteban Sarasa 1981, pp. 118-120.
  9. ^ Manuel Dualde 1947, pp. 355-385.
  10. ^ Ferran Soldevila 1965, pp. 105-109 and 120-125.
  11. ^ Esteban Sarasa 1981, pp. 121-122.
  12. ^ Ernest Belenguer 2012, pp. 74.
  13. ^ Ferran Soldevila 1965, pp. 123.
  14. ^ Luis Giménez 1911, pp. 37-38.
  15. ^ Esteban Sarasa 1981, pp. 121.
  16. ^ a b Arnau Cònsul 2012, pp. 30-31.
  17. ^ a b Ernest Belenguer 2012, pp. 92.
  18. ^ a b Ferran Soldevila 1965, pp. 139-144.
  19. ^ Ernest Belenguer 2012, pp. 72-77.
  20. ^ Julio Valdeón 2001, pp. 107-108.
  21. ^ Zurita 1562, pp. Tome. XI, chapter 87.
  22. ^ Manuel Dualde 1971, pp. 240-245.
  23. ^ Esteban Sarasa 1981, pp. 123-126.
  24. ^ Jesús Mestre 1999, pp. 197-198.
  25. ^ Sesma Muñoz 2011, pp. 207-209.
  26. ^ Sesma, Laliena, and Monterde 2012, p. 5.
  27. ^ Sesma, Laliena, and Monterde 2012, p. 38.
  28. ^ Ernest Belenguer 2012, pp. 91.
  29. ^ Luis Vela Gormedino 1985, pp. 24-25.

Bibliography[edit]

  • Belenguer, Ernest (2012). El com i el perquè del Compromís de Casp (1412) (in Catalan). Barcelona: Rafael Dalmau Editions. ISBN 978-84232-0772-5. 
  • Cònsul, Arnau; Casals, Àngel (April 2012). "El Compromís de Casp. Pacte o conxorxa?" [Compromise of Caspe. Pact or plot?]. Sàpiens (in Catalan) (Barcelona: Grup Cultura 03) 115: 26–37. ISSN 1695-2014. 
  • Dualde Serrano, Manuel (1947–1948). "La elección de los compromisarios de Caspe" [The election of the Caspe compromisarios]. Estudios de Edad Media de la Corona de Aragón (in Spanish) (Zaragoza) III: 355–395. 
  • Dualde Serrano; Manuel; Camarena Mahiques, José (1971). El Compromiso de Caspe (in Spanish). Zaragoza: Institución Alfonso el Magnanimo and Institución Fernando el Católico. 
  • Giménez Fayos, Luis (1911). El Compromiso de Caspe (1412-1912) (in Spanish). Valencia: Miguel Gimeno. 
  • Gormedino; Luis Vela (1985). Crónica incompleta del reinado de Fernando I de Aragón (in Spanish). Zaragoza: Anubar. ISBN 84-7013-210-5. 
  • Laliena Corbera, Miguel; Monterde Albiac, Cristina; Coordinator: Sesma Muñoz, José Ángel (2012). En el sexto centenario de la Concordia de Alcañiz y del Compromiso de Caspe (in Spanish). Zaragoza: Gobíerno de Aragón. 
  • Mestre i Godes, Jesús (1999). El Compromís de Casp: Un moment decisiu en la història de Catalunya (in Catalan). Barcelona: Edicions 62. ISBN 8429745130. 
  • Sarasa Sánchez, Esteban (1981). Aragón y el Compromiso de Caspe (in Spanish). Zaragoza: Librería General. ISBN 84-7078-107-3. 
  • Sesma Muñoz, José Ángel (2011). El Interregno (1410-1412) Concordia y compromiso político en la Corona de Aragón (in Spanish). Zaragoza: Institución "Fernando el Católico" (CSIC). ISBN 978-84-9911-143-8. 
  • Soldevila, Ferran (1994 (first edition 1965)). El Compromís de Casp (resposta al Sr. Menéndez Pidal) (in Catalan). Barcelona: Rafael Dalmau Editions. ISBN 84-232-0481-2.  Check date values in: |date= (help)
  • Valdeón Baruque, Julio (2001). Los Trastámaras. El triunfo de una dinastía bastarda (in Spanish). Madrid: Temas de Hoy ed. ISBN 84-8460-129-3.