Francisco Tadeo Calomarde y Arría

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Francisco Tadeo Calomarde, by L. Cruz y Ríos (copy by Vicente López).

Francisco Tadeo Calomarde y Arría (10 February 1773 – 19 July 1842) was a Spanish statesman.


Calomarde was born in Villel, Aragon, to poor parents.

He studied law in Zaragoza, and procured through the marriage with the ugly niece of the royal personal physician Berga a post in the ministry of law—a marriage, he had to be threatened to be sent to the galleys by the king. In 1808, Calomarde followed the central junta of Aranjuez, the leader of which he had become, to Seville and Cádiz; however after the return of Ferdinand VII he was the first to acclaim the absolute monarch, for which he was named first administrator at the Secretaria general de Indias. For fraudulent sale of an American diocese, he was banished to Toledo, and, after his secret return to Madrid, to Pamplona. After the restitution of the constitution in 1820, he joined the liberals again, true to his flawed character, but only gained renewed influence after the abolishment of the constitution in 1823. He became secretary of the regency based in Madrid, then as a willing tool of the reactionaries the secretary of the Camara del real patronato, finally, 1824, Secretary of Justice.

For eight years now the most important matters of the state passed through his hands, and the protection of the weak king secured him unfettered power, which he used to suppress freedom through the secret police, to retrain the Jesuits, restitute the monasteries and ruthlessly prosecute the Liberals. At the same time, he tried to secure the favors of Don Carlos, while he punished the Carlist uprising with great severity. When in September 1832, Ferdinand VII was struck by such a severe stroke of gout that he was claimed dead, Calomarde was the first to greet Carlos as king. When the king recovered, Calomarde persuaded him to revoke his decrets and will, where the queen was named regent of the country, and to reinstate the Salic laws.

The king however, on his unexpected convalescence, declared the change of testament on 31 December 1832 for void. Calomarde was banished to his estates in Aragon, and ordered to be arrested, but escaped disguised to France, where he died in Toulouse.

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