A History of Aragon and Catalonia. Appendicesbook Aragon in English. Spain.

A History of Aragon and Catalonia. Appendices book History Aragon Aragon

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Genealogy of the Kings of Aragon

Genealogy of the Kings of Aragon -- Continued

The term "Catalan" was used to include Southern France, as appears in a tenso between Albert and Monge (Appel Provenzalische Chrestomathie, Leipzig, 1920, No. 92).

"Monges, cauzetz, segon vostra sciensa, qual valon mais: Catalan o Frances? e met de sai Guascuenia e Proensa e Limozin, Alvernh' e Vianes." The question is whether "Catalans" or French are the better, and the name Catalan is explained as including Gascony, Provence, Limousin, Auvergne and Vienne or Dauphiné. If this was a common use of the term, the passage in Dante is more easily explained; but I have no other instance.


For heresy and the Iniquisition in Aragon, see H. C. Lea, History of the Inquisition, vol. II, p. 162 ff. (French edition, Paris, 1901.)

The first articles in the Constitutions de Cathaluna (Barcelona, 1588) show the readiness of James to avoid trouble on the question of heresy; he forbids "que nunca de alguna persona layca sie licit publicament o privada disputar de la fe catholica," and likewise the possession of the Old or New Testament "en romanç," and anyone who has a copy is ordered to take it "al Bisbe del loc cremadors."



An anonymous Provençal planh on the death of Manfred in 1266 is given by Bertoni, Trovatori d'Italia, Modena, 1915, p. 480.

Lo valen rei Manfred, que capdelaire
Fon de valor, de gaug, de totz los bes,
Non sai cossi mortz aucir lo pogues.
The lengthy passage in Dante, Purgatorio III, 102 ff., is well known; in the De Vulgari Eloquentia, I, 12, Dante eulogises Manfred's interest in literature.


Pedro III and the "crusade" of 1285.

Pedro III, like other kings of Aragon, was a patron of letters [295] and able himself to turn a stanza, as is shown by an interchange of stanzas or "coblas " between himself and other poets of Aragonese or French sympathies on the eve of the crusade. The first exchange is with a troubadour or joglar of his own court, one Peire Salvage, who is known from other sources to have been trusted by him (see Miret y Sans, Viatges del infant en Pere, fill de Jaume I en els anys 1268 y 1269, Barcelona, 1908). The circulation of such poems was still a valuable means of propaganda and Pedro, no doubt, hoped to rouse some sympathy for himself in the courts North of the Pyrenees. For this reason he began the correspondence with his own court poet, the sense of whose reply was doubtless settled beforehand by the king. Replies were provoked from one Bernat d'Auriac of Béziers, who loudly proclaimed his loyalty to Philip III, and from the Count of Foix who, as we have seen, had joined in revolt against Pedro and had spent two years in imprisonment.

Peace had been made under an agreement by which the Count's daughter, Constance, was to be betrothed to James, Pedro's second son, and his castle of Castelbon was to be held in trust by the king. This agreement was made on May 27, 1284; the Count's stanza suggests that he was still in possession of his castle; his daughter had been taken to Aragon and remained there until 1287 (see Baudon de Mony, Les relations politiques des comtes de Foix avec la Catalogne jusqu'au commencement du XIVe siècle, Paris, 1896); he was therefore obliged to remain neutral. The whole "correspondence" is too lengthy for quotation here, but a stanza by the King and the counts reply are of particular interest. The incident has been fully explained and the texts edited by A. Jeanroy, Les "coblas" provençales relatives a la "croisade" aragonaise de 1235 in Homenaje a Menéndez Pidal, Tomo III, p. 77, Madrid, 1925, from which article these extracts are taken.

Lo Reis d'Arago.
Peire Salvagg, en greu pessar
Me fan estar
Dins ma maizo
Las flors que say volon passar,
Senes gardar
Dreg ni razo,
Don prec asselhs de Carcasses
E d'Ajanes
Et als Guascos proc que lor pos
Si floro mi fan mermar de ma tenensa,
Mas tals cuja sai gazanhar perdo
Que.l perdos l'er de gran perdecio.

[296] "Peire Salvatge, in grievous anxiety within my house the flowers cause me to be, which desire to pass to this side of the mountains without considering right nor reason; therefore I beg those of the Carcassés, of the Agenais and the Gascons that it may be painful to them if (i.e. not to allow) the flowers diminish my possessions; but such a one thinks to gain pardon here whose pardon will be for him perdition."
Pedro calls for help against the invasion of the fleurs-de-lis, who are coming to gain the papal indulgence (perdo; note the play upon words with perdicio) promised to those who join in the crusade against him, and appeals for help to the King of England, who was then ruler of the districts mentioned. In the next stanza he refers to the fact that his nephew, Charles of Valois, the son of Philip III and Isabella, his own sister, had been invested with the crown of Aragon.

Lo Coms de Foix.
Salvatge, e tuit qu' ausem cantar
Rei d'Aragon
Digatz me se poira tant far,
C'a mi no par,
Qu'el e.l leon
Sian ensems en totas res
Contra.l Frances,
Si qu'el sieu afar sia ges;
E car el dio qu'el plus dreituriers vensa,
De faillir tost a cascun ai raison:
Pero sapchatz qu'eu deteing Castelbon.

"Salvatge and all who can sing, as a lover, of the King of Aragon, tell me if he will be able to do so much, for it seems not so to me, that he and the lion may be united in all things against the French so that there may be some good in his affair (that he may have some chance of success); and as he desires that the more righteous may conquer, I am right in standing aloof from either party: but know that I am in possession of Castelbon."




A summary of the Fuero of Jaca, granted by Sancho Ramirez in 1064, will give an idea of the matters with which these documents dealt. (Parral y Cristobal, vol. I, p. 368. Martinez y Herrero, vol. II, p. 448.)

[297] The Fuero begins by abrogating all previous malos fueros and constituting Jaca a cuidad. Citizens are to enclose their own houses and to live in peace with one another; anyone guilty of wounding another in a quarrel when the King was in residence was to pay a fine of a thousand solidos or lose a hand; if a robber were killed, no fine was to be exacted. If citizens were called out for war, they were to be provided with bread for three days and could be summoned only for a regular campaign; householders who could not go, might send a foot soldier as substitute. Rights of property were secured and possession might not be disturbed after a year and a day. Rights of pasturage and forestry were granted over a space within a days journey from the township. A scale of fines for adultery, assault, falsifying weights and other offences was laid down; he who struck another with his fist or seized him by the hair, was to pay 25 solidos; if he threw him to the ground, 250 solidos. The merino or magistrate was to levy fines with the consent of six principal citizens. Citizens could grind corn where they pleased, but for Jews and bakers, mills were assigned. Citizens were not to give land away nor to sell it to the Church nor to infanzones. If a man were imprisoned for debt, the creditor must feed him; if a slave were pledged, his master must provide him with food, "as he is a man and should not starve like a beast."


The Almogávar or Almugávar was a light armed soldier, extremely mobile, capable of finding a living anywhere and accustomed to any kind of fatigue and hardship. Desclot's chronicle (chap. CIII) gives an account of one who was captured by the French in the course of the war in Sicily under Pedro III. "It happened one day that a company of Almogávares met a company of French horse and foot; the almogávares were few in number and fled to the mountains, so that the French captured only one who was unable to escape. For a wonder they did not kill him, but took him to the Prince and told him that there was an almogávar whom they had captured. The Prince saw that he was dressed only in a surcoat with no shirt, was thin and burnt black by the sun, with long black hair and beard; he wore a leather cap, leather breeches and sandals. The Prince marvelled much at the sight of him and asked him who he was. He replied that he was one of the almogávares of the King of Aragon. Of a truth, said the Prince, 'I know not what excellence or bravery there can be in such as you; for you seem to me to be poor, wretched and savage folk, if you are all like this.' 'Indeed,' said the almogávar, 'I am one of the meanest of them; none the less, if one of [298] your knights, the best that there is, will come forward, I will readily fight with him, and he shall be in full harness and mounted; only give me back my lance, my spear and my knife; and if it should be that I can conquer him, you shall let me go safe and sound; and if he conquer me, do with me as you will.' 'Truly, a fair wager,' said the Prince. Thereupon, a French knight, young, tall and proud, rose and said that he would fight. 'Certainly,' said the Prince, 'if you will. Go and arm yourself and we will see what this man can do.' Then the Knight went to arm himself and his horse; and the Prince returned to the almogávar his lance, his spear, his knife and his belt and he was led outside the camp. And all the army went out there and the Prince with his knights. And the Knight rode up in full armour on his horse, and rode upon the almogávar with his lance in rest to smite him; and the almogávar, when he was close upon him, avoided him and drove his spear into the chest of the horse two handsbreadth between the chest and the shoulder, and therewith leapt aside, so that the Knight missed his blow. The horse fell to the ground forthwith. And at once the almogávar drew his knife, ran to the Knight who was lying on the ground and began to unlace his helmet with intent to cut his throat. But the Prince ran to him and forbade him and said that he had won his wager and should let be. And the almogávar left the Knight and the Prince took him to his tent and gave him one of his garments and told him to go forth safe and sound. And the almogávar rejoicing at his fortune, went off to Messina and came before the King and told how he had been captured and what had happened and how the Prince had set him free. When the King had learned this, he was pleased and sent for two of the French prisoners whom they had taken, clothed them well and sent them to the Prince with a message, that whenever the Prince should send him one of his own men, he would return two of his." Estébanez Calderón wrote a prologue to La Campana de Huesca, the novel by Cánovas del Castillo, and there drew a detailed picture of the Almogávares which combines most of the facts known concerning them.


Frederic III of Sicily and the Count of Ampurias

Fadrique of Sicily appears as one of the last of the troubadours in his poetical correspondence with the Count of Ampurias, Hugo or Uc, who was one of the first Spanish nobles to throw in [299] his lot with Fadrique and who saved his life in the battle of Cabo Orlando in 1299. Of Eble, the messenger of Fadrique, nothing is known; Pedro, the Count's messenger, has been identified with Pietro Lancia, who became Count of Caltanissetta. The text is given by V. de Bartholomaeis, Poesie Provenzali Storiche relative all' Italia, Roma, 1931, II, p. 298 ff.; he refers to M. Aman, La guerra del Vespro Siciliano, II, p. 287; III, p. 438, p. 529, and agrees with him that the poems were written in the spring of 1296; the general tone of hopefulness and of confidence in the Sicilians is characteristic of Fadrique, and while he complains of his brother's action, he does not mention him by name.

Dompn Frederic de Cicilia.
I. Ges per guerra no.m chal aver consir
No non es dreiz de mos amis mi plangna,
Ch'a mon secors vei mos parens venir
E de m'onor chascuns s'esforza e.s langna
Perche.l meu nom major cors pel mon aja;
E, so neguns par che de mi s'estraja,
No l'en blasmi, ch'enmental faiz apert,
Ch'onor e prez mos lignages non pert.

II. Pero el reson dels Catolans auzir
E d'Aragon puig far part Alamagna,
E so ch' enpres mon paire gent fenir;
Del Regn' aver crei che per dreiz me tangna;
E, se per so de mal faire m'asaja
Niguns parens, car li creseha onor gaja,
Be.m porra far dampnage a deschubert,
Ch'en altre vol no dormi ni.m despert.

III. N'Ebble, va dir a chui ohausir so plaja
Che dels Latino lor singnoriu m'apaja,
Per q'eu aurai lor e il me per sert;
Mas mei parenz mi van un pauc cubert.

Responsiva del Con dEnpuria.

I. A l'onrat rei Frederic Terz vai dir
Q'a noble coro no.s taing poder sofragna,
Peire qomte; o pusc li ben plevir
Che dels parenz ch'aten de vas Espagna
Secors, ogan non creja ch'a lui vaja,
Mas a l'estiu fasa cont che.ls aja
E dels amics, e tegna li oll ubert
Che.ls acoilla pales e non cubert.

II. Ne no.s cug ges che.l seus parenz desir
Ch'el perda tan che.l Regne no.ill remagna
Ne.l bais d'onor, per Franzeis enrechir;
Ch'en laiseran lo plan o la montagna;
Confunda.ls Deus e lor gorgoil dezaja!
Pero lo Rei e Cicilia.n traja
Onrat del faitz, che.l publat e.l desert
Defendon ben; d'acho sion apert.

III. Del gioven Rei me plaz car non s'esmaja
Per paraulas, sol q'a bona fin traja
So che.i paire chonquis, a lei de sert,
E, si.l reten, tenrem l'en per espert.

Don Federico de Sicilia

I. I care not to be anxious for the war, nor is it right that I should complain of my friends, for I see my relatives coming to my help; and each one of my vassals striving and toiling that my name may spread more widely through the world; and if any one appears to stand aloof from me, I blame him not for it, for he makes open amends, since my lineage does not lose honour or worth.

II. But I can make the reputation of the Catalans and of Aragon heard as far as Germany, and bring to a fair conclusion that which my father undertook; as regards the possession of the kingdom, I think that it belongs to me of right; and if any relative of mine tries to do me wrong on that account, for increase of his own honour thereby, he will be able to harm me openly, for I neither sleep nor wake in any other desire.

III. Sir Eble, go and tell him who cares to hear it, that the lordship of the Latins pleases me, so that I shall have them and they me assuredly; but my relatives give me some cause for misgiving.

Reply of the Count of Ampurias

I. Go, Count Pedro, and say to the honourable King Frederic III that it is not fitting for a noble heart to yield; and I can assure him that the help which he expects from his relatives in Spain will not, I think, come to him this year (i.e. immediately), but in the summer let him rely upon their help and that of his friends, and let him keep his eyes open, receiving them openly and not in secret.

II. It is not to be supposed that his parent desires that he should lose so much that the kingdom no more abide with him nor that his honour should be brought low to enrich the French; [301] they will abandon both plain and mountain (i.e. the whole country). May God confound them and overthrow their pride! But may the King and Sicily draw honour from the exploit, for they well defend both town and country; therein may they be ready.

III. I am pleased with the young king, for he is not dismayed by words and desires to bring to a good end the conquest of his father, which was lawfully made, and if he keeps it, we shall in consequence regard him as a proven man.

This work was originally published by Methuan Publishing Ltd. in 1933.
Pagination of the original edition is indicated set off in brackets, as in [19].

Ample your information on Aragon

If you want to extend your information on Aragon you can begin crossing another interesting route is the Mudejar, Patrimony of the Humanity, also you can extend your cultural knowledge on Aragon examining its municipal and institutional heraldry without forgetting, of course, some of its emblematics figures as Saint George Pattern of Aragon also book of Aragon.

Also Aragon enjoys a diverse and varied Nature where passing by plants, animals or landscapes we can arrive at a fantastic bestiario that lives in its monuments.

The information will not be complete without a stroll by its three provinces: Zaragoza, Teruel and Huesca and his shines, with shutdown in some of its spectacular landscapes like Ordesa, the Moncayo or by opposition the Ebro.

Also you can dedicarte to the intangible ones: from the legend compilation that also does to universal Aragon you can persecute the presence of del Santo Grial in Aragon.

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A History of Aragon and Catalonia. Appendices

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