1st Marquis of Iria Flavia

Spanish Heraldry
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JMcMillan
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Re: 1st Marquis of Iria Flavia

Postby JMcMillan » 17 Nov 2017, 14:20

Chris Green wrote:We are tending to drift from the original reason for the thread. Partly my fault!


And partly mine, too. To get back on the heraldic track: Chris used the term "grandees" in reference to the creation of Spanish noble titles. Actually, most Spanish titles do not carry grandeza. Most if not all dukes are grandees, but below that it's only a minority, and very few among those created since the restoration of the monarchy. Iria Flavia appears (from Spanish Wikipedia's list of grandees) not to be one of them. Grandees have a number of (now entirely symbolic) privileges that other nobles don't, including the right to display one's arms against a red mantle lined with ermine. And more importantly, the right to wear one's hat in the king's presence. I've also read that they take precedence over everyone else except the royal family, but the official Spanish order of precedence doesn't seem to mention them, so maybe not.

Back under the pre-1931 constitution, the hereditary seats in the Senate were only for grandees, not for all titled nobles.
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Re: 1st Marquis of Iria Flavia

Postby Chris Green » 17 Nov 2017, 15:55

Chris used the term "grandees" in reference to the creation of Spanish noble titles.


I did. I know that "grandeza" is an "add-on" status, but was searching in vain for another word than "peers" which is very British.

There is a lot of info about grandeza in Wiki.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grandee

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_current_Grandees_of_Spain
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Re: 1st Marquis of Iria Flavia

Postby Ryan Shuflin » 07 Jan 2018, 19:09

I think that the British have been relatively frugal with titles, and have not suffered from title inflation as much as the rest of Europe.

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Re: 1st Marquis of Iria Flavia

Postby Michael F. McCartney » 08 Jan 2018, 03:18

"title inflation" - Ryan, are you speaking of an increase in the number of titles, or in the number of persons/families awarded noble titles of whatever name?
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Re: 1st Marquis of Iria Flavia

Postby Ryan Shuflin » 08 Jan 2018, 08:02

By title inflation a mean an increase in titles, in such way that perceived value of them is diminished. This is often accompanied by a lowering of standards.

For example, in England, as William the Conquerer invaded he was the only duke on the island and there was a only handful of earls. Much later, the heir was made duke, and then other sons or relatives of the King. Then one or two of the most powerful and richest noblemen. Now dukes are still relatively rare, especially outside the Royal family.

There is also a certain standard of living associated with high titles. The first Duke of Marlborough received a lot of wealth so that he could be a duke, without being a joke. Additionally, I know that an Earl refused a dukedom, because he couldn't support the lifestyle expected of a Duke.

The title of Earl has also inflated. In Scotland, there was at one time 7 earls, now there are almost 50 Scottish Earls. The increase in Earldoms is probably largely the cause of the increase of the number of dukes. As more earls were created, the old earls were promoted. So the top tier of nobles switched from earl to duke.

In fact, promotion in Britain seemed to be incremental. A person was rarely granted a dukedom unless he was already an earl. If he was, then the King was probably his father. This explains the English honour system a bit, if you want to honour someone, you give them a one step increase in rank. So a commoner get knighted, a peer gets a higher title etc.

Probably the extra privileges that come with a title is the basis for the British frugality compared to other European countries. The Kings of Spain and France could give out titles without worrying about stuffing the legislature too full, and the already titled couldn't complain about it too much.

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Re: 1st Marquis of Iria Flavia

Postby JMcMillan » 08 Jan 2018, 16:09

Without delving into statistics, I'm not sure Ryan's thesis holds up to scrutiny, and comparative statistics would be complicated enormously by the different nature of titles and nobility from one place to another. In ancien regime France, for example, most titles were tied to fiefdoms and were thereafter borne by any nobleman who acquired the property. In other words, a bourgeois lawyer who became a judge of the Parlement of Paris and thereby became noble and then purchased a landed estate designated as a county thereby became count of whatever was the name of the estate. But he wasn't thereby considered to outrank socially or politically a nobleman of ancient lineage who was merely a baron, or even bore no title at all. See http://www.heraldica.org/topics/france/noblesse.htm. As far as I can tell, German, Russian, Italian, Spanish, etc., nobility worked quite differently from either of these, as well as from each other.

In addition, there was a considerable growth in the number of UK peerages in the 19th and early 20th centuries, when the House of Lords still had real power, as governments would ensure control of that house by having the monarch pack it with their own supporters. This tended to escalate, of course, because the succeeding government of the opposite party would then have to do the same thing only in even greater numbers. And with the exception of the handful of "Law Lords" (experienced judges appointed to the House of Lords so it could credibly continue to be the UK's highest court of appeal), all these new peerages were hereditary up to 1958 when it became possible to appoint barons (and baronesses) for life.

So, far from seeing the creation of new peerages as a political disadvantage because it entitled the recipient to a seat in the legislature, that was precisely the reason they were created in the first place.
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Re: 1st Marquis of Iria Flavia

Postby Ryan Shuflin » 09 Jan 2018, 07:49

I see your point, but I would like to point out, that life peerages are all baronies, and most politically motivated creations were. Of course the PM was always offered an Earldom. Margaret Thatcher is possibly the only PM to accept a peerage that wasn't an Earldom.

At the same time elevation to the peerage in order to the honour a scientist, artist, etc. is relatively rare in the UK. In part, because knighthoods and baronets were used for this purpose, but also because peerages come with real political privilege. Even so, when artists, such as Tennyson were granted peerages, they were also mostly just barons.

The title of Marquis is also in the UK relatively rare. In most cases, if you meet a Marquis, he is the heir of a dukedom. It should also be noted that, when the Princes of Battenberg renounced their title, they received in compensation marquisates. Suggesting, that a Hessian princedom is equal to a British marquisate.

Considering this, it is surprising to see an author made a marquis. However, from the Spanish view point, it should be surprising that Tennyson was not made a marquis.

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Re: 1st Marquis of Iria Flavia

Postby Michael F. McCartney » 10 Jan 2018, 14:41

It's natural to try to analyze and compare the nobility of different countries based on similar titles, but that only works where the criteria, privileges, and responsibilities associated with a particular title are similar in the nations being compared. But given the widely varying nobiliary and political systems, the differences between e.g. a "Baron" in England vs Scotland vs France vs Spain, etc. etc. are likely to be greater than the similarities.
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Re: 1st Marquis of Iria Flavia

Postby Chris Green » 10 Jan 2018, 15:24

When the "Grand Tour" was popular it was often the English gentleman who received the best attention at inns since he was more generous with pourboires than continental counts and barons. At bottom one's nobility on such occasions was measured by the depth of one's purse. Having 16 quarters simply did not hack it.
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Re: 1st Marquis of Iria Flavia

Postby Martin Goldstraw » 10 Jan 2018, 16:18

I can't remember the actual quote but somewhere there is a short comment in a past volume of either Burke's Landed Gentry or perhaps Debrett's to the effect that a continental count is probably of less importance in terms of wealth and land than an English Yeoman, many of whom own vast tracts of land and are relatively wealthy.
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