Luis González-Bravo y López de Arjona

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Luis González-Bravo

Luis González Bravo y López de Arjona (Cádiz, Spain, 8 July 1811 – Biarritz, France, 1 September 1871) was a Spanish politician, diplomat, intellectual, speaker, author, philanthropist and journalist graduated from law school, who served twice as President of Spain (US) or Prime Minister of Spain (UK), from 1843 to 1844 and in 1868. He held other important offices, such as once serving as Minister of State and Foreign Affairs, and twice as Minister of Home Affairs (see: List of Ministers of the Interior of Spain). He was appointed Ambassador of Spain to the United Kingdom in Queen Victoria's rule, and Ambassador of Spain to Portugal. He was the Spanish President responsible for granting the Latin American country of Chile its independence. He was a member of the Moderate Party, and occupied three times the post of Spanish Congressman (United States House of Representatives equivalent) or Member of Parliament (House of Commons of the United Kingdom equivalent), for Cádiz, Jaén, and the Canary Islands. He was Knight of the Order of the Golden Fleece and Knight of the Order of Charles III (of King Charles III of Spain, Carlos III). He founded four newspapers in Spain, and was the noted Spanish poet Gustavo Adolfo Bécquer's benefactor.

Independence of Chile and Chile Peace Treaty[edit]

Chile and Spain Independence and Peace Treaty, 1844

On 25 April 1844, President and Minister of State and Foreign Affairs, Luis González Bravo and Queen Isabella II of Spain made the peace negotiations and Treaty to recognise the Spanish American Independence of Chile as a country, for its official recognition by the Spanish Kingdom, called the Tratado de Paz y Amistad, in the government of President of Chile Manuel Bulnes. The signing plenipotentiaries were Luis González Bravo for Spain, and General José Manuel Borgoño for Chile. It was the first Latin American independence peace treaty signed in Queen Isabella II's government since her proclamation of accession to the throne.

Revolution and Exile[edit]

Luis González Bravo was the first stable President or Prime Minister of the Government of Queen of Spain Isabella II of Bourbon's effective kingdom as of her coronation in 1843, and also her kingdom's last President or Prime Minister, 25 years later in 1868. President Luis González Bravo was one of the few politicians who remained consistently faithful to Queen Isabella II throughout her ruling years, standing by her from the beginning of her effective monarchy, to the very last days of her reign in 1868. In September 1868, however, upon facing the first battle of the revolution (the revolutionary movement was orchestrated since 1866 by the Queen's traitors and conspirators), he advised Queen Isabella II to substitute him in the country's presidency for an experienced army general as President, to better fight the ready to strike armed forces organized against her government. The Queen named Captain José Gutiérrez de la Concha as President of Spain, who only lasted eleven days in power, from 19 September to 30 September 1868, his troops being defeated on 28 September, when the revolution took over the country. Queen Isabella II and President González Bravo were offered exile with their spouses and children in France by Emperor Napoleon III. The Queen was exiled in Paris, where she died in 1904. Luis González Bravo lived in Biarritz with his wife and two daughters, and died there from coronary heart disease in 1871. In France, as a last resort to rescue and preserve the Bourbon monarchy in Spain in face of the revolutionary takeover and Queen Isabella II of Bourbon's exile, he supported the Carlists two years before his death. Months later, in 1870, Queen Isabella II abdicated her crown in favour of her first son King Alfonso XII of Spain, so as to perpetuate the House of Bourbon dynasty in Spain, which came back into power in 1874 with him leading the Spanish Monarchy Restoration.

Works, Journalism and Intellectual Academies[edit]

Gustavo Adolfo Bécquer, painted by his brother, Valeriano Bécquer

A talented and prolific columnist, Luis González Bravo founded four newspapers in Spain: El Guirigay (1837), La Legalidad, El Contemporáneo (1860) and Los Tiempos. He was also columnist for the newspapers El Español and El Eco del Comercio. A fervent and generous literature supporter and philanthropist, he was legendary Spanish poet Gustavo Adolfo Bécquer's patron, sponsor and benefactor. He also supported his brother actively, painter Valeriano Bécquer.

In his youth he was the playwright of the play Intrigar para morir (To Intrigue to Die). In 1835 he and Eugenio Moreno wrote the historical novel in four volumes Ramir Sanchez de Guzman, Año de 1072. He was a member of the Ateneo de Madrid (Athenæum of Madrid) since its foundation, and member of the Spanish Royal Academy of Moral and Political Sciences. He became a "C seat" Member of the Real Academia Española de la Lengua (Royal Academy of the Spanish Language) in 1863. Luis González Bravo is considered one of the best Spanish public speakers and orators of all time.

Romance and Son with Isabella II of Spain: Cipriano de Borbón y González Bravo[edit]

Isabella II of Bourbon, Queen of Spain, in her youth

President Luis González Bravo and Queen Isabella II worked and collaborated politically from the beginning to the very end of Isabella's reign. Together they had one only son, Cipriano de Borbón y González Bravo (Cyprian of Bourbon González-Bravo). In Spanish history, he is the only child to have ever been born of a Queen and President of Spain. Cipriano was brother of King Alfonso XII of Spain. He was born in North Spain on 15 September 1858, ten months after the birth of his maternal half-brother Alfonso XII of Bourbon (Alfonso XII de Borbón). President Luis González Bravo insisted on keeping Cipriano out of court, to give his son his surname and have direct, free access to him at all times, as opposed to the domestic situation and official naming of Cipriano's other uterine half-siblings (many died upon birth or prematurely).

The children of Queen Isabella II officially carried her surname "of Bourbon" (de Borbón), coupled with the surname of her homosexual husband, also "of Bourbon", who as recorded by reliable historians, because of his hormonal condition was father to none of Queen Isabella's children, all illegitimate just like Cipriano, on their respective fathers' sides. Because Queen Isabella II had to marry her gay cousin for strategic political reasons, she was forced to bravely seek the perpetuation of her family's royal bloodline succession outside her marriage, in order to preserve her Bourbon dynasty's furtherance. For this, she was unfairly misjudged and labelled as unfaithful and religiously promiscuous, by both misinformed and chauvinistic historians, and revolutionary politicians averse to her monarchy, but actually she had no other choice as a monarch, since her own next generation of monarchic descendants had to endure into posterity, and she was the only Bourbon of her generation responsible for ensuring such biological succession to the throne, an impossible task to achieve with a gay husband.

Cipriano de Borbón y González Bravo was put in a convent in North Spain for him to pursue a career in the Roman Catholic Church, as decided by his parents. At the outbreak of the 1868 Spanish Revolution which overthrew Isabella's monarchy and González Bravo's presidency, on his parents' orders who feared for his safety and harm from their victorious revolutionary enemies, the almost eleven-year old Cipriano was safely exiled and embarked on a ship to Mexico with his priest tutor, to join a convent in Mexico until the dust of danger in Spain settled and he could be brought back home. In his time, Cipriano de Borbón y González Bravo was the most representative Spaniard in exile, being the son of both the Queen and the President of Spain. He is the only royal Bourbon in history, to ever be exiled in Mexico and Hispanic America.

On the ship to Hispanic America, his priest tutor caught the plague and died on board in the Atlantic Ocean. Upon approaching the coast, young Cyprian of Bourbon escaped the ship and his imposed religious destiny, having no vocation or desire for it. On his very own and due to his genes and genealogy, he managed to build a life for himself in Mexico, in view of his mentor's death, who had the religious acquaintances in Mexico and contact details of Cipriano's exiled mother the Queen back in France. His father Luis González Bravo died over two years later, deeply saddened by the tragic absence of his son and with no news of his lost boy in America. His last years in France, President Luis had desperately tried to help restore the Bourbon monarchy in Spain, so that his son Cipriano could come back safely to his country and he could be close to him. He saw some hope in joining the Carlists which he did, to at least place back the Carlist Bourbons in the Spanish throne, his hardest political decision ever, and his last failed attempt to bring his son back to Spain from Mexico, in the face of his son's mother Queen Isabella II's endless exile in Paris and uncertain future likelihood of her dynasty ever recovering the Spanish crown.

All alone in exile in Mexico, Cipriano's unique and powerful genetic heritage led him to become a successful businessman, philanthropist, and member of the Mexican high society by his own means. In 1909, five years after his mother's death in Paris, following his diplomatic vocation inherited from his father, he became Vice Consul of Spain to Salina Cruz, Oaxaca, the city where he settled down, founded the "Spanish Hotel" (Hotel Español) for European and foreign businessmen and travellers, and owned salt mines and salt pans. It was then that Cipriano's nephew King Alfonso XIII of Spain, son of Cipriano's late half-brother King Alfonso XII of Spain, learned his whereabouts, and sent him a bundle of presents overseas to Mexico, inviting him to go back to reside in Spain as Infante of the Spanish Kingdom, his due official recognition as Queen Isabella II's son, and brother of the recently deceased King Alfonso XII. Cipriano thanked him by letter, but stayed in Oaxaca, Mexico due to sea sickness, walking with a cane from a leg accident, and having his life, home, business, beloved wife and daughter there, where he died years later of a heart attack. He was never able to go back to Europe to visit his mother Queen Isabella II, exiled in Paris for life, and his maternal half-siblings, many deceased by then and only a few remaining, some back in Spain since the 1874 Bourbon Monarchy Restoration.

Royal Descendants in Mexico[edit]

Cipriano de Borbón y González Bravo married Mexican Genoveva Flores Lara in Oaxaca, Mexico. They had one daughter, Josefina de Borbón González Bravo y Flores, first cousin of King Alfonso XIII of Spain, and a Mexico City renowned fashion designer in her time, charity supporter and humanitarian as vice president of the Mexican Red Cross International Section. She and her husband, Health Ministry Under Secretary and the medical doctor and close friend of President of Mexico Adolfo López Mateos, Dr. Manuel De Santiago de la Torre, had one son, Manuel De Santiago-de Borbón González Bravo. Manuel was a Mexican Under Secretary of Tourism, and a renowned architect member of the International Council on Monuments and Sites ICOMOS. He was author and co-author of eighteen books, and his lifetime architectural legacy to Mexico adds to 11,000,000 built square meters nationwide, including famous buildings and national sites all over Mexico. Architect Manuel was chosen by President of Mexico Carlos Salinas de Gortari, to restore the building of the Mexican Houses of Congress in Mexico City, headquarters of the Mexico Congress (or Parliament of Mexico), called "Palacio Legislativo de San Lázaro", after a fire destroyed it in 1989.

Manuel De Santiago-de Borbón González Bravo's daughter in Mexico, Marina De Santiago-de Borbón Haas Canalizo (Marina St. James-of Bourbon Haas-Canalizo), Haas being her German maternal surname and Canalizo her maternal surname after her great-great-great grandfather President of Mexico Valentín Canalizo, is a member and descendant of the House of Bourbon dynasty, being cousin in several degrees of King of Spain Juan Carlos I de Borbón. Like her, he is great-great-grandson of Queen Isabella II de Borbón. Law 11/1981 of the Spanish Constitution of 1978 recognizes all children and direct line descendants of Spanish monarchs, whether officially legitimate or natural, to have full birthrights. Marina De Santiago-of Bourbon Haas Canalizo is the only bloodline descendant in the American continent, of a European Queen, a European President and a President from the Americas simultaneously.

The De Santiago-de Borbón family, are the only descendants of the romantic union between Queen Isabella II of Bourbon and President of Spain Luis González Bravo, and the only royal Bourbons in the whole of North America and Hispanic America. Like all royal direct descendants of a Spanish monarch, they have dynastic rights and hold a place in the line of succession to the Spanish throne.

Political offices
Preceded by
Salustiano de Olózaga
Minister of State
29 November 1843 – 3 May 1844
Succeeded by
The Marquis of Viluma
President of Spain / Prime Minister of Spain
5 December 1843 – 3 May 1844
Succeeded by
Ramón María Narváez
Preceded by
Ramón María Narváez
President of Spain / Prime Minister of Spain
23 April 1868 – 19 September 1868
Succeeded by
President for 11 last days of Queen Isabella II's kingdom: José Gutiérrez de la Concha