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Dening Nations


Dening Nations



Yale University Press

New Haven &
Published with assistance from the Program for Cultural Cooperation between
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Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data

Herzog, Tamar.
Dening nations: Immigrants and citizens in early modern Spain and Spanish
America / Tamar Herzog.
p. cm.
Includes bibliographical references (p. ) and index.
ISBN 0-300-09253-9
1. CitizenshipSpainCastileHistory18th century. 2. Citizenship
SpainColoniesHistory18th century. 3. SpainColoniesAmerica
History18th century. I. Title.
JN8399.C26 H47 2003

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The paper in this book meets the guidelines for permanence and durability of the
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10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1

Acknowledgments vii
1. Introduction 1
2. Vecindad: Citizenship in Local Communities 17
3. Vecindad: From Castile to Spanish America 43
4. Naturaleza: The Community of the Kingdom 64
5. Naturaleza: From Castile to Spanish America 94
6. The Other: Conversos, Gypsies, Foreign Catholics,
and Foreign Vassals 119
7. The Crisis of an Empire 141
8. Was Spain Exceptional? 164
9. Conclusions and Afterthoughts 201
Abbreviations 209
Notes 211
Glossary 271
Bibliography 275
Index 323

I would like to thank David Nirenberg, Juan Pro Ruz, Tom Cummins,
Mireille Peytavin, Piero Ventura, John Brewer, Cornell Fleischer, Julius Kirsh-
ner, Steve Pincus, Claudio Lomnitz, Jan Goldstein, Richard Kagan, Jeremy
Adelman, Jim Amelang, and Antonio Manuel Hespanha, each of whom dis-
cussed aspects of this manuscript with me and gave me wise suggestions. S. N.
Eisenstadt, Luis Roniger, and Mario Sznajder asked good questions. The
anonymous readers of the press carefully read the manuscript and advised me
what to change and how. I also thank Jorge and Anahi Myers, Jos Carlos
Chiaramonte, Marta Valencia, Orense Carlos Cansanello, Guillermo Ban-
zato, Luciano Andrenacci, and the staff at the Archivo General de la Nacin,
most particularly Liliana Crespi, Gabriel Taruselli, and Fabin Alonso, who
made my stay in Argentina possible, interesting, and agreeable; Jos Frank
Ragas Rojas, who assisted me in the Archivo General de la Nacin in Lima,
and Carole Leal Curiel, who helped in Caracas; Jos Manuel Prez Prendes,
Magdalena Rodrguez Gil, and Clara Alvarez Alonso, who did the same in
Madrid; Mara Ins Carzolio, Orense Carlos Cansanello, Marcela Ternavasio,
and Mara Elena Martnez, who allowed me to read and cite their unpublished
papers; Federica Morelli, Gabriela Gmez Crcamo, and David Nirenberg,
who called my attention to different sources and citations; Mara Gmez
Garrido, Susan Allan, and Eliza Childs, who edited parts of the manuscript;
viii Acknowledgments

Byron Hamann, who prepared the index; Laura Lobera Argelles, who of-
fered me her house and plotted a visit to Minorca; and Yuval Erlich, for being
Born in Lima, this book rst took shape as a research project at the Institute
for Advanced Study at Princeton. It matured at the University of Chicago and
saw completion at the European University Institute in Florence, Italy. Its
different parts were discussed in the meetings of the Society of Spanish and
Portuguese Historical Studies, the American Historical Association, the
Forum on European Expansion and Global Exchange, and the Association of
European Latin American Historians, and in the seminars of Juan Carlos I of
Spain Center at New York University, Johns Hopkins University, the Interna-
tional House of the University of MichiganAnn Arbor, the Center for Early
Modern History of the University of MinnesotaTwin Cities Campus, the
University of Kansas at Lawrence, the University of ToulouseLe Mirail, the
Autonomous University of Madrid, the Max Weber College in Erfurt, Ger-
many, and the Truman Research Institute of the Hebrew University, Israel. I
would like to thank the faculty, students, and staff of these institutions for
their support and encouragement. I would also like to thank the Yad Hanadiv
Foundation and the Social Sciences division of the University of Chicago for
supplying the funds necessary to conduct the archival research.
This book is dedicated to the memory of Francisco Toms y Valiente and
Luis Castro Leiva, professors and friends, and to that of Jorge Daz Gimnez,
whose love for Spain and the Hispanic world accompanies me despite his


The construction of a community of natives of the kingdoms of Spain,

one that in the early nineteenth century would be dened as the Spanish
community, is at the center of this book. I argue that this community emerged
as a result of the establishment of a distinction between immigrants who were
willing to integrate themselves into the community and take on both the rights
and duties of membership, and those who were not. In the Middle Ages, this
distinction applied only to immigrants. In the early modern period, however, it
became instrumental in dening the status of people already living in the
community. The distinction between good and bad immigrants was rst
elaborated in Castilian localities, where it found expression in the term vecino,
designating people who were entitled to certain rights as long as they complied
with certain duties. It was then applied to the kingdom of Castile as a whole. In
the sixteenth to the eighteenth centuries, this distinction served to dene the
natives (naturales) of the kingdom, and by the seventeenth and eighteenth
centuries it also dened a Spanish community, including natives of all Spanish
kingdoms rst in Spanish America and then in Spain itself. This distinction
explained how Spaniards and Spanish citizens were dened in the rst Spanish
constitution (1812) and how European Spaniards were distinguished in the
eighteenth and nineteenth centuries from Spanish Americans by a Creole dis-
course that afrmed the uniqueness of those inhabiting the New World. The

2 Introduction

distinction between good and bad immigrants was also applied to people
of different ethnicities, races, religions, or vassalage. It justied the rejection of
converso Jews, the persecution of the Gypsies, the exclusion of individuals of
African descent, and on the contrary, the welcoming to Spain of foreign vas-
sals and foreign Catholics. Distinguishing good from bad immigrants involved
dening good and bad and determining who had the authority to decide these
issues. It was in this realm, of believing or not the good intentions of migrants
and making their integration easier or harder, that most debates took place.
In order to illuminate these questions, I trace the evolution of vecindad and
naturaleza as categories of belonging in early modern Castile, Spain, and
Spanish America mainly during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. I
identify the relation between these categories, the theories explaining them,
and the communities created as a result of these distinctions. I argue that the
classication of people as good or bad was a byproduct of the need to decide
who could enjoy rights and who could be forced to comply with duties. This
was the crucial issue. The decision constituted people as bearers of rights at the
same time it dened them as members of a community. In a period that pre-
dates the elaboration of formal denitions of nationals and citizens (categories
that generally arise at the end of the eighteenth century or the nineteenth
century), belonging to these communities and enjoying these rights constituted
the main mechanism by which citizens and Spaniards were distinguished from
These claims differ from those supported by most contemporary scholar-
ship. Historians who studied early modern communities in the past consis-
tently engaged in debates that were largely modeled according to present-day
perceptions. Anderson, Hobsbawm, and Greenfeld afrmed the legal and po-
litically constructed or even imagined character of nations; Armstrong, An-
thony Smith, and Hastings argued instead that nations were naturally created
as a result of linguistic or ethnic commonalties. For the rst, nations were a
modern phenomenon, a byproduct of the emergence of modern states and
modern means of communication; for the second, they existed in the Middle
Ages and they preceded and were independent of the state. The conceptual
difference between constructed communities and natural communities
was also helpful to other historians who instituted a distinction between pa-
triotism and nationalism. Godechot, Brading, and Viroli classied patriotism
as a natural identity, emerging among people who knew one another and who
lived within the boundaries of small communities. They identied national-
ism, on the contrary, with a larger social and geographical unit where collec-
tive identities were indeed willfully invented. Whereas patriotism was a prod-
uct of the past, nationalism was a modern invention. The rst was based on
community (gemeinschaft), the second on association (gesellschaft).
Introduction 3

Since most people living in early modern Europe felt attached to a local com-
munity, an abstract national identity could emerge only when this local
attachment disappeared, indeed, once the modern state came into being. In
spite of recent criticism by such scholars as Peter Sahlins and Jos Mara
Portillo Valds, this analysis still presents both nation and state formation as
antagonistic processes. They confronted an expansionist and articial state
with natural and older peripheral bodies who resisted the penetration of the
state. After their defeat, older and natural communities were replaced by a
sense of belonging to a wider, unied, articial, national society.
The literature on the development of early modern categories of belonging
largely supports this narrative linking state and nation and afrming that both
were contemporaneous and both emerged as a result of confrontation between
state organs and local communities. Historians of Europe afrm that during the
early modern period the distinction between being of one country or the other
depended on subjection to a sovereign power. Although horizontal ties, inte-
gration, and acceptance were important in determining the way individuals
were actually treated, all treatment that differed from formal legal categories
based on subjection was interpreted as a simple proof for the dissociation
between law and its application and between legal and social categories.
Whereas the community of subjects was constructed through vertical ties,
horizontal ties dened a citizenship regime in local communities. This regime
had no direct bearing on the construction of either state or nation. Local
citizenship existed only in a few privileged municipalities and included only a
minority of men. By the eighteenth century, local status was indicated by
largely honorary titles that were often associated with duties (to be avoided)
rather than with rights (to be obtained). In some cases, such as Spain, local
citizenship was a widespread status, yet it bore no relationship to the classica-
tion of people as Spaniards or foreigners. In short, in early modern Europe two
community levels coincided: the local community and the community of sub-
jects. According to most research, each of these communities operated on a
different level and had its own implications as well as criteria. Because the local
experience was either irrelevant or unt for the construction of states and
nations, modern citizenship could be viewed (and reconstructed) only through
the lens of antiquity. For precisely the same reason, even historians who did
look at the relation between local communities and central authorities could
pursue their research with little attention to the ways participation in local
communities dened membership in the larger units that eventually became
states or nations. And, although the state was often perceived as a city (re-
public), this did not imply that actual practices in local communities were
applied to the realm of the state.
I believe that the insistence on distinct community levels and the focus on
4 Introduction

subjection result from the way historians have reconstructed the past. Most
research has centered either on local communities or on national structures,
either on law and doctrine or on social practices. The assumption was that
early modern communities were fundamentally similar to our own. Historians
studied communities with the aim of afrming that they were national or not,
articial or not, state generated or not. This method reduced communities to
legal denitions, which depended on a dichotomy between a law of birth (that
ascribed individuals to a community by virtue of birth in a given territory) and
descent (that classied individuals in accordance to their genealogy). People
participating in the debates about the natural or constructed nature of nations
viewed communities as ensembles whose membership could be reconstructed
and dened conclusively. They gathered that the identication of people as
insiders or outsiders was stable rather than contingent, and they assumed the
transhistorical nature of identity politics. They also supposed that answering
the question of who was a member of the community and who was not was
important to contemporaries a priori and irrespective of conjuncture and cir-
cumstances, and that individuals and local and state authorities invested time
and energy in the identication of people and in establishing their rights.
If we consider that early modern communities were profoundly different
from our own, then answering the questions currently asked by historians,
and engaging in the above-mentioned debates, is both impossible and unnec-
essary. Instead of asking when the current structures emerged, we need to ask
what kinds of communities existed in the past, how people belonging to them
perceived their participation in them, and how they argued in favor of exclud-
ing or including others. This task is especially important given the nature of
the primary sources at our disposal. Most historians considered letters of
citizenship and naturalization as the only method by which individuals could
obtain classication as insiders or outsiders. Yet, unlike today, early modern
categories of belonging were not embodied in legal denitions or in acts of
authority. Instead they were generated by the ability to use rights or to be
forced to comply with duties. The question was never who was a Spaniard,
who was a Frenchman, or who was a citizen of a local community. At stake
was always the question of who could enjoy a specic right or be obliged to
perform a certain duty. Under such a system, the use of rights of citizens and
natives implied the claim that one was a citizen or a native, and the silence of
those allowing it (both the authorities and other individuals) implied consent.
This meant that most people acted as citizens and as natives and were allowed
to do so without their status ever being questioned or afrmed. Indeed, by
enacting the role of citizen or native they created a public image that they were
citizens or natives, and this image in turn allowed them to become citizens or
Introduction 5

natives. The ability to act as citizens or natives and thus become citizens or
natives without any formal declarations explains why citizen lists in European
cities were short in comparison to the actual number of people who identied
or acted as citizens. It also explains how the majority of natives were in fact
natives without formal declarations or the elaboration of lists. Indeed, under
such a system, the issuing of formal declarations of citizenship or nativeness,
such as those embodied in letters of citizenship and letters of naturalization,
was the exception and not the rule. Formal declarations were issued only in a
small minority of cases, in which a conict either occurred or was imminent,
or in which the authorities wished to grant status to people whose circum-
stances did not allow them to make a legitimate claim to membership. In these
cases, the authorities used the letters as both instruments and proofs of their
sovereignty. The letters enabled the municipal authorities or the king to dis-
regard normal procedures and to intervene by constituting as citizens or na-
tives people who were not, or by aiding others whose status was questioned. It
should therefore not surprise us that, as historians have afrmed, most letters
of naturalization were granted to wealthy people who were interested in ob-
taining a certain right. Far from being the only foreigners acting, or wishing to
act, as natives, as other scholars have assumed, wealthy people simply tended
to encounter opposition where other people did not. They therefore invested
the effort and resources needed to secure an ofcial recognition that other
foreigners found unnecessary. And, since the question of who was worthy of
which treatment could be pursued in certain moments and abandoned in
others, and since it could become meaningful under certain circumstances, or
be completely irrelevant in others, the status of certain people could be consen-
sual at one moment and questioned at others. This is why people who had
lived in a community for twenty, thirty, or even forty years without their status
being an issue suddenly had to prove they were citizens or natives.
Since the documents at our disposal describe the exceptions, not the rule, in
each case we must ask ourselves why status was questioned and what agents
and interests were involved. Yet, rst and foremost, we must ask what hap-
pened in other cases, indeed, in most cases, where consensus reigned. Moving
beyond existing documentation will, as a rule, enable us to avoid overempha-
sizing the importance of formal procedures and state structures and to discover
the power of implicit social categorizations and ongoing social negotiations in
the creation and denition of early modern communities. This move will dem-
onstrate that, rather than a status leading to entitlement to rights, as would be
the case with citizenship and even nationhood today, belonging to a local
community or the community of the kingdom in the early modern period was a
process. As Margaret Sommers has noted, this process was contingent upon
6 Introduction

and constituted by networks of relationships and political idioms. It generated

citizenship rather than administered it. If we wish to comprehend early mod-
ern communities, we must analyze local actions and everyday interactions that
classied people, allowing some to enjoy the benets of the community while
excluding others. We need to abandon the quest for identity and examine
instead processes of identication, that is, the processes through which peo-
ple claimed to be or were identied as members of the community. This will
enable us to look at the history of state and nation formation in Europe by
linking immigration policies to the construction of communities and by argu-
ing that the exercise of rights, rather than legal enactments or ofcial declara-
tions, dened the boundaries of early modern communities.

In this book I look at these questions by analyzing the case of Spain and
Spanish America and trace the evolution of two categories of rights: vecindad
(which denoted the rights of citizens) and naturaleza (which captured the
relationship people had with the community of the kingdom). Vecindad was a
term that originated in Castile in the eleventh and twelfth centuries during the
reconquest and resettlement period. It initially designated the privileges and
duties of individuals who were willing to abandon their communities of origin
and come to settle in lands recovered from the Muslims and now under Chris-
tian control. By the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, the vecindad status
lost its immediate relation to immigration on one hand, and to a factual
situation of residence on the other. Instead, it came to imply a wide range of
scal, economic, political, social, and symbolic benets in return for the fulll-
ment of certain duties. These rights and duties varied from one community to
the next and changed over time. In most communities vecinos could use the
communal property, especially communal pastureland. In small communities,
they participated in managing local affairs through their membership in the
local council (concejo). In large communities, only individuals who purchased
their ofce, or responded to special criteria of honor or seniority, partici-
pated in the local council. Vecinos, however, could still inuence local politics
by electing their representatives to the council, by being elected to certain
ofces, or by participating in public meetings (concejo abierto). In some cases,
vecinos also enjoyed special commercial privileges, such as lower tariffs or the
right to introduce certain products into the local markets. Among the duties of
vecinos was the obligation to submit to the local authorities. Vecinos had to
pay their fair share of the taxes levied on the community as a whole (most
taxes) and contribute to other public expenses, such as hiring a professional
surgeon or subsidizing public works. They were expected to join the local
militia and reside in the community.
Introduction 7

Beyond its practical implications, vecindad denoted a social and cultural

distinction. It identied people as both members of the community and civi-
lized. Membership was important in itself, and people who were denied
vecindad complained about their inability to exercise certain rights, but they
mainly expressed their resentment in social terms. As far as they were con-
cerned, being a vecino meant acceptance and not being one meant rejection.
Men and women could lead a civil life only when integrated into a community.
Those who were not integrated were the ultimate outsiders, the true barbar-
ians. Through making use of their rights and fullling their obligations, veci-
nos thus indicated that they were socially and politically members of the local
community. This condition was granted to people residing in both royal and
seigniorial jurisdictions, and in urban and rural communities alike. It was
applied to individuals of all three estates and, in the sixteenth century it was
generally granted to all Castilian heads of households. By the eighteenth
century, vecindad was presented as their natural right.
Most historians of Spain have argued that vecindad was a status that de-
pended on compliance with certain legal requirements. According to these
scholars, vecindad was generated by formal declarations issued by competent
authorities. Yet other historians noted that vecindad was an important institu-
tion, which lacked clear criteria, was extremely exible, and was linked to
reputation. As I argue in this book, both groups of historians looked at the
picture from a restricted point of view. In spite of their ostensible similarity to
modern denitions of citizenship, early modern legal enactments did not enu-
merate requirements for vecindad. Instead, contemporaries viewed these
enactments as examples of a more general rule, which the legislation did not
enumerate. Since the general rule was more important than the examples, these
legal enactments could be disregarded in specic cases in which they conicted
with the general rule without it constituting a legal violation or a corrupt
practice. By the early modern period, and certainly in the eighteenth century,
all communities in Castile shared this general rule. Inspired by Roman law as
applied and interpreted under Castilian conditions, this rule held that vecindad
was constituted on its own, at the moment when people acted as if they felt
attached to the community. Complying with military duties within the com-
munity, for example, afrmed peoples inclusion in the community and be-
stowed on them vecindad. The same was true of rights. Exercising the rights
of vecindad, for example, taking ones goats to the common pasture, was both
a claim and a conrmation of membership. There was no need for ofcial
declarations, and, indeed, vecindad was generated largely by what could be
described as reputation. The gap between one group of historians studying
laws and institutions, and another studying social practices, is thus closed.
8 Introduction

Similar afrmations can be made with regard to the implementation of

Castilian vecindad in Spanish America. Historians of Spanish America have
afrmed that either late medieval Castilian practices continued to operate in
the Americas or that, in the Americas, vecindad lost its original meaning
becoming a simple honorary title. This misunderstanding arose from the con-
centration on legal enactments and formal procedures, on one hand, and the
consideration of social practices alone, on the other. As I argue in this book, by
the mid-seventeenth century, Spanish American practices took a different path
than the Castilian ones. Yet this path introduced in Spanish America policies
that were more natural and more in tune with the Castilian theory than was
the practice in Castile itself. It essentialized the idea of vecindad by allowing
Spanish Americans to exclude all non-Spaniards from citizenship and by ex-
panding citizenship inside the Spanish community. At the same time, citizen-
ship, which originally applied only in the Spanish community, gradually found
its way to the Amerindian one, eventually creating a citizenship regime com-
mon to both Spanish and Indian communities.
The second category of rights that operated in early modern Spain and
Spanish America was naturaleza. Naturaleza (translated here as nativeness)
was a status that appeared in Castile in the late medieval period and was
immediately distinguished from vassalage and subjection. By the fteenth cen-
tury, it dened a particular community of people who enjoyed exclusivity in
ofce holding and in the use of ecclesiastical beneces in the kingdom. In the
sixteenth century, legislation granted natives the exclusive right to legally im-
migrate and to trade in Spanish America. These rights initially dened a Cas-
tilian community of natives, which was distinguishable from the other com-
munities of natives existing in the other kingdoms of Spain. Yet, over the years,
a community of natives of the kingdoms of Spain also made its appearance.
In 1596, natives of all Spanish kingdoms were ofcially allowed to cross the
Atlantic and engage in the transatlantic trade. In 1716, they were permitted to
hold ofces and beneces everywhere in Spain. The denition of this commu-
nity of natives of the kingdoms of Spain largely followed the Castilian
model. The importance of this model was clear in Spanish America, which, as
a Castilian territory, was subjected to Castilian law, institutions, customs, and
practices. Yet it was also clear in Spain, where the rights of natives of all
kingdoms were made equal in the beginning of the eighteenth century pre-
cisely because Castilian public law was applied also in the Crown of Aragon.
In return for their privileges, natives had to be loyal to king and community.
They had to obey the local and royal laws that protected them in some ways,
yet limited their liberty in others. These limitations became apparent in the
eighteenth century, when many native merchants complained that their for-
Introduction 9

eign competitors received better treatment in Spain. They enjoyed the pro-
tection of their national laws and consuls and could produce, buy, or sell
goods without being members of a guild. Most important, they did not have to
pay royal or local taxes.
As happened in the case of vecindad, most historians have assumed that
nativeness had a clear legal denition. They reproduced the few legal enact-
ments that mentioned nativeness, without taking into account the fact that
they all referred to specic situations and specic rights or duties. They dis-
regarded all contemporary mention of rules absent in the legislation and re-
fused to take seriously a discourse emphasizing the importance of love among
community members. They also considered all failures to observe the require-
ments enumerated in the laws as cases of corrupt and illegal practices. Al-
though historians argued that nativeness was a condition denoting integration
in a political community, one that in contemporary terms would embody the
idea of nationality, they maintained that it operated separately in each Span-
ish kingdom. Historically, there were natives of Castile, natives of Aragon,
natives of Catalonia, but never natives of Spain. During the early modern
period, they concluded, Spain was meaningful only as a religious creed and
as a community of descent.
When the evidence is studied it becomes apparent that the few cases pre-
sented by historians are more the exception than the rule. It becomes clear that
contemporaries considered legal enactments and formal declarations as exam-
ples. Rather than a fragmentary regime suggested by the various legislative
pieces, or a regime totally dependent on the king as letters of naturalization
indicated, nativeness had a logic of its own. This logic determined that people
who were integrated in the community and were willing to comply with its
duties were indeed natives, independent of their place of birth or descent and
independent of formal declarations.
Despite their different genealogy and origin, and despite representing dif-
ferent interests and apparently different community levels, in the early mod-
ern period vecindad and naturaleza came to be associated with one another. In
the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, vecindad, which originally dened
only local immigration policies, inuenced nativeness, which designated a
relation to the kingdom. During this period vecindad was instituted as a mech-
anism of naturalization, allowing foreigners to become natives and inducing
the classication of natives who lost their vecindad as foreigners. It was
through their relation to a local community that people took their places in
the kingdom, and it was the lack of such a connection that made them for-
eigners. Although religion was important, and Catholicism was indeed a
precondition for achieving recognition as citizen or native, religion was not
10 Introduction

sufcient on its own. Vassalage, on the contrary, was the result of, and not a
condition for naturalization.
Spain, therefore, was not dened solely by reference to religion, vassalage,
or even descent as historians have argued in the past. Rather than constituting
a nation, naturaleza constituted a community that dened who could enjoy
the rights of Spaniards. This denition depended on implied categorizations
and norms, and it varied according to the interests of individual agents or
groups and the specic circumstances of time and place. Reconstructing the
boundaries of the community by examining who was allowed to use which
rights enables us to step aside from most afrmations concerning the nature of
both state and nation in early modern Spain and Spanish America. In Spain,
these afrmations confront a rst group of historians who argue that during
the early modern period Spain was only a geographical idea or a political
project, and a second group who believes that Spain had always existed.
According to the rst, until the eighteenth century, and possibly even later, the
only bond among the different Spanish kingdoms and communities, which
were politically, culturally, legally, and linguistically differentiated, was a com-
mon allegiance to the monarch and the Catholic church. According to the
second, inherent and natural ties connected Spaniards to one another from as
early as the fth century. In twentieth-century Spain, these visions led to
debates between regional nationalists, who afrmed the existence of separate
nations in each of the Iberian kingdoms, and Spanish nationalists, who denied
it. It allowed claiming that local communities and the state were antagonists,
and that only when local allegiances were suppressed could a national identity
come into being. The importance of integration as a mechanism by which
people could become worthy of rights and communities could be dened also
led to a well-known controversy between Amrico Castro and Claudio Sn-
chez Albornoz. The former attested that Spaniards forged themselves histor-
ically by mixing with other cultures and races, and the latter insisted that a
Spain existed since the early Middle Ages and that it had constantly fought
against all external inuences, including but not limited to the presence of
Jewish and Moorish populations. In the Spanish American case, claims were
made for the existence of a national discourse during the colonial period, or
on the contrary, for the construction of nations only after independence. It was
generally assumed that people were classied according to their place of birth
and not according to their activities or wishes.
If vecindad and naturaleza operated on a daily level in social settings where
the ability of individuals to use rights could be consensual or not, afrmed or
denied by a multiplicity of agents, some of whom were ofcial, and some not,
how can one speak of an invented or a natural community? How can local
Introduction 11

communities and the state or nation be antagonistic to one another in a situa-

tion where the kingdom was always perceived from the local point of view and
people integrated in a the local community were by denition Spaniards? How
can one maintain a distinction between patriotism and nationalism? Indeed, in
early modern Spain there was no need to imagineas Benedict Anderson has
led us to believebeing familiar or similar to other members, because all
members belonged to the same local community and only by extension held
rights in the kingdom. Close scrutiny reveals that membership in local commu-
nities dened the relationship linking individuals to the kingdom and that a
law of domicile was as important, if not more important, than the law of
birth (ius soli) and descent (ius sanguinis).
Conicts regarding the classication of individuals as good or bad, mem-
bers or nonmembers, were frequent. They could be tied to economic interests
and competition for resources. This clearly happened in Spanish America,
where, as I will argue in this book, merchants classied economic rivals as
foreigners to prevent them from immigrating and trading in the New World
(chapter 5). Competition for resources was also evident in Castilian local
communities, whose members often sought to exclude as many people as
possible from using the common pasture, or where special campaigns were
carried out against people deemed too rich or too powerful (chapter 2). Per-
sonal animosity or rivalry also motivated conicts. The nature and extent
of competition could change over time. These changes could be justied by
changing economic conditions or by shifting alliances. They could be induced
by the improved social or political status of a rival.
Although conicts concerning individual status were always tied to the
specic circumstances of place, time, case, and parties, they also expressed
some more general concerns. In seventeenth- and especially in eighteenth-
century Spain, for example, conicts regarding nativeness forced the kings to
confront their subjects in a constitutional debate (chapter 4). The kings argued
that naturalization was a royal prerogative and that, as sovereigns, they could
naturalize whomever they pleased whenever they pleased. They portrayed the
community of natives as an agglomeration of people directly subjected to
royal authority and claimed the right to introduce into it their foreign vassals
and servants. The communities and organs representing the kingdom argued
otherwise; natives were distinguished from foreigners by virtue of natural laws
that the king could not modify. These laws indicated that integration and
compliance with duties tied people to one another and made them members of
the same (local) community and, by extension, the community of the king-
dom. In their view, the kings vertical notion of community disappeared; in-
stead, the community was portrayed as one based mainly on horizontal ties.
12 Introduction

Although debates concerning individual status could occur in cases of the

native born whose families had always resided in a particular jurisdiction,
they were probably more acute, and more frequent, when they involved new-
comers who could not point to a history of integration or of love and loyalty to
the community. Attitudes towards migration could change over time, accord-
ing to local conditions as well as the particular characteristics of each migrant.
In Spain, the freedom of all people to choose their place of residence was
continuously afrmed at the same time it was questioned. When it was useful
to their interests, for example, to restrict commercial competition, some Span-
iards claimed that a permanent difference should be instituted between na-
tives and naturalized, and between those born in the community to citizen
and native parents and those who were not (chapter 5). On other occasions,
the same people insisted that all foreigners permanently residing in Spain were
true natives (chapter 4). Social attitudes towards migrants were just as ambig-
uous. Many foreigners lived in Spanish territories. They were concentrated
in port cities, where they easily came to represent as much as 10 percent of the
population. Some foreigners integrated into the Spanish community by his-
panizing their names, actively participating in communal life, obtaining cit-
izenship, or marrying a Spaniard. Others maintained a separate or semisepa-
rate existence by constituting national associations, merchant organizations,
and confraternities; marrying inside their group; living in compact neighbor-
hoods; employing servants from their countries of origin; and sending their
children to be educated abroad. Conicts between natives and foreigners were
frequent, and so were complaints that foreigners accumulated too much eco-
nomic power, which they used to benet their homeland rather than Spain or
Spanish America. Hostility towards foreigners was also expressed by calling
into question their faith and their loyalty and by mocking their customs.
Another source of conict regarding individual status was the conviction
that individuals also formed parts of groups, and as members of groups they
were granted special treatment. This treatment was based on the conviction
that group membership was telling; that people who belonged to certain
groups or categories tended to act in certain ways that were different from
other people. It was often stated that people who worked for a salary, for
example, surgeons, barbers, or shepherds, resided in communities only as long
as they had work there. Their residence was never truly voluntary, and as such
communities considered it as less meaningful than that of others who ac-
tively chose to live in the jurisdiction (chapter 2). The same kind of reasoning
led to the stereotipization of all Gypsies as nomadic and badly behaved,
even though it was clear to contemporaries that good citizen Gypsies also
existed (chapter 6). It was under these circumstances that, in 1812, people of
Introduction 13

African descent were declared foreigners: they belonged to a group whose

progenitorsslaveswere said to have never expressed their intentions to
become natives (chapter 7). Indeed, discussions on good and bad immigrants
not only xed the internal membership criteria, it also allowed the community
to portray people of different ethnicities, races, or cultures as foreigners or
semiforeigners, therefore justifying their rejection. A theory centered on inte-
gration, and apparently allowing all good-willed people to become members
of the community, could thus lead to exclusion, and a practice theoretically
classifying people according to their individual behavior could classify them
according to their perceived membership in a group, such as the Gypsies or
the Africans.
Because status verication and registration occurred only in exceptional
cases, we must use the information they provide to deduce what was so obvious
and so unquestionable that it was never openly discussed. The importance of
this task is demonstrated in chapter 2, where I contrast formal citizenship
procedures with their hidden meaning. The importance of the unspoken is
also made clear in chapter 6, where I examine the role of religion in the
formation of communities. It is also present in other chapters, where I study
what early modern Spaniards and Spanish Americans meant when they af-
rmed their vecindad or nativeness, or when they classied their colleagues.
The need to deduce the rule from the exceptions requires engagement in
comparative research. The size, social structure, and economic orientation of
each of the enclaves I study (Seville, Madrid, municipalities included in the
jurisdiction of the court of Valladolid, Caracas, Lima, and Buenos Aires) were
different. Also different was the identity of people engaged in debates on
vecindad and naturaleza, the dynamic between them, and the interests they
represented. This diversity allowed me to ask questions that a microhistory,
for example, would not. Diversity facilitates the construction of the rule be-
cause it permits the location of subjects, considerations, and themes that were
only hinted at in some places yet openly discussed in others; that were consen-
sual in one locality yet conictual in another. Looking at similar questions in
very different local settings also allows us to appreciate similarities and to
ascertain that if these similarities existed in such different contexts, they could
not be accidental. By comparing the practice of vecindad and naturaleza in
different centers, I was able to gain a better understanding of my sources,
which I was forced to rethink constantly. For example, it was only after I read
discussions about nativeness in Spanish America that I recognized the opera-
tion of nativeness by integration (prescription) in Castile and Spain. Put sim-
ply, Spanish American discussants openly mentioned naturalization by inte-
gration when they asserted that their practices were different. I then returned
14 Introduction

to the documents I had studied in Spain and realized how important and how
pervasive naturalization by integration was. I suddenly discovered it in the
legislation and in court cases. I suddenly understood that debates in the
Spanish parliament (cortes) dealt only with one type of naturalization (by
royal letter), but not another (by integration). Without comparative cases,
such insight would not have been possible. Comparison was also the motiva-
tion behind looking at the Iberian world on both sides of the Atlantic. Rather
than wanting to explain New World orders, I perceived Spain and Spanish
America as a single space, and I attempted to understand developments in
both by constantly looking at one side and the other. Although I learned that
Castilian practices changed in the New World, I often discovered that these
changes illuminated what was happening in Spain as much as they told about
the conditions in Spanish America.
Another way to reconstruct the rule by using the exceptions was to consult a
wide array of sourceslegislation, legal and political literature, administrative
records, administrative correspondence, and political debates, especially those
taking place in the parliament (cortes) and among cities with voting rights in
parliament. I studied some 3,500 cases in which the classication of people as
citizens or natives became necessary, including formal petitions for citizenship
or nativeness and instances where the status of individuals was called into
question when they sought to do something that was restricted to citizens or
natives. These sources proceed from municipal records and from the archives of
merchant guilds and other economic bodies, such as the juntas of agriculture
and commerce. They are included in the documentation generated by the
Council of the Indies, the Council of Castile, and the Council of State, the
House of Trade (Casa de Contratacin), and the local American authorities. I
also considered a wide array of other materials, such as lists of citizens, tax-
payers, and militiamen and letters of citizenship and naturalization.
Throughout this book, I translate vecindad as citizenship. In doing so I
follow the path already taken by other historians. This translation does not
imply that vecindad was identical to present-day citizenship. Within the scope
of Old Regime societies, however, vecindad was certainly similar to other
contemporary institutions that described the relationship between individuals
and local communities, such as citizenship in Italian city-states. Translating
vecindad as citizenship is also authorized by the fact that the Spanish term
currently indicating citizens (ciudadano) was completely absent in early mod-
ern legal and administrative records. In contemporary political literature,
this term was either used as a synonym for subject, or it was modeled
according to classical authors. In the rst case, it designated a relationship
with the monarch, one that in legal, administrative, and social settings corre-
Introduction 15

sponded to the term vasallo (vassal). In the second case, it designated the
perfect citizen who lived in a city and who had certain moral and behavioral
traits that were considered essential for the well running of a perfect repub-
lic. On both accounts, ciudadano fails to describe citizenship as practiced in
early modern Castile; vecindad, on the contrary, does so perfectly.
In this book I write about Castile, Spain, and Spanish America. By Castile
I mean the crown of Castile. I use this term mainly to study the local commu-
nities included in the jurisdiction of this crown or to examine the evolution of
nativeness (naturaleza) before the early eighteenth century. Spain designates
the collectivity of the Spanish kingdoms as dened in Spanish America in the
late sixteenth century (natives of the kingdoms of Spain) and as created in
the Iberian peninsula in the beginning of the eighteenth century. By Spanish
America I refer mainly to the Spanish territories in the Southern Hemisphere.
Wishing to circumscribe the object of my inquiry, I decline to explore the
specic ways by which the Spanish community interacted with the Indian one.
This interaction, I believe, is well covered in contemporary research, as well as
in different studies centered on the formation of purity of blood (limpieza de
sangre) and mestizos categories in Spanish America. Instead, I center my atten-
tion on the processes by which Spaniards distinguished themselves from one
another and from other Europeans, and the ways they justied giving member-
ship privileges to certain people. For lack of space and because of the highly
casuistic nature of the privileges attached to citizenship and nativeness, I de-
cline to analyze their material ramication in each individual case. Instead, I
study debates about the ability to enjoy privileges not in order to evaluate
these privileges, but in order to examine processes of identication. For the
same reason, I use no quantitative analysis, nor do I necessarily mention the
specic results obtained in each case. My goal is not to determine how fre-
quently this or that opinion was pronounced or who was successful in his
claims. Instead, I look at the ways communities were described in social pro-
cesses of inclusion and exclusion.
Although centered on early modern Spain and Spanish America, this book
calls into question our understanding of other early modern communities.
There are many indications in the literature on Italy, France, and England that
status was just as ambiguous and contingent in these countries as well; that on
most occasions status was neither requested nor acknowledged but was in-
stead a byproduct of the enjoyment of rights; that a direct relation existed
between membership in a local community and in the kingdom. It was also
clearly the case that in all three countries formal rules were modied by so-
cial practices. The rules themselves were highly complex, and they included
both local and royal laws as well as a great diversity of other norms, such as
16 Introduction

natural law, common law, or Roman law, which seriously modied the
nature and extent of rights, and thus of status. Indeed, a preliminary review of
the existing literature on Italy, England, and France (chapter 8) suggested that
Spain was exceptional. A closer reading indicates that it was not. The need to
redene the object of study, the questions asked, and the methodology used is
thus as pertinent to other cases as it is to Spain and Spanish America. Further
research needs to be done if we wish to fully understand the way early modern
European communities were formed over time. This understanding will clarify
the relation between local communities, citizenship, state, and nation. Observ-
ing the intersection between state and nation and between social practices and
legal enactments in this way, we can provide an alternative vision of European
history, one that explores the (neglected) connection between horizontal and
vertical social ties and that looks at the construction of communities from
both below and above.

Vecindad: Citizenship in Local Communities

Castilian citizenship originated in the Middle Ages. During this period,

the northern provinces of Castile gradually expanded southward, conquering
territories previously under Muslim domination. This effort, though cast as a
reconquest in an attempt to stress continuity between the pre- and postcon-
quest periods and to claim legitimacy, was clearly the beginning of a new age,
in which Christian control was extended throughout Spain and in which new
forms of government and territorial management gradually emerged. From
the eleventh century onward, people moved to the lands reclaimed from the
Muslims and formed new communities or transformed existing ones. Often
spontaneous in nature and dependent on individual or collective agency and
on the activities of the church and the military orders, this movement was also
encouraged by the Castilian crown. Royal decrees recognized most new or
transformed communities as corporate entities, and they allocated specic
rights to those who were willing to come and settle in them. Granted equally to
all permanent settlers by virtue of their settlement, these rights were extended
to people irrespective of their religion, their vassalage, and their status as
villains or nobles, ecclesiastics or not.
By the twelfth and thirteenth centuries, the kingdom of Castile consisted of
a great diversity of communities, each with its own legal regime and its own set
of privileges, which were extended to all permanent settlers. The disparity of

18 Vecindad: Local Communities

legal standards between one community and the other was substantial, and a
variety of local laws existed, each replicating the conditions under which the
specic community was created. With the consolidation of royal authority and
the introduction of ius commune (revived Roman law) in the kingdom, mostly
from the late fourteenth century onward, many communities began dening
the ways citizenship could be achieved and the conditions for its achievement.
In most cases, they presented citizenship as a legal tie that could have external
manifestations, such as residence, but contrary to the reconquest period, it no
longer depended on them. Instead, citizenship was formulated as a contract in
which the newcomer agreed to certain obligations (mainly to reside in the
community and to pay taxes) in return for receiving certain benets (usually
access to communal lands and ofce holding). By the sixteenth century, this
citizenship regime extended to all Castilian communities. Whether under
royal or seigniorial jurisdiction, whether rural or urban, the people of all three
estates were divided between citizens (vecino) and noncitizens (residentes or
forasteros). Citizens enjoyed a wide array of privileges and were obliged to
comply with many duties from which noncitizens were excluded. Principal
among their rights was the privilege of using communal property and, in most
communities, of voting and being elected to ofce. Principal among their
duties was the obligation to reside in the community, pay taxes and other
public expenses, and serve in the local militia.
Local citizenship in Castile is well documented for the medieval period, and
dozens of studies describe the ways it was obtained or lost, as well as the rights
and duties attached to it. Covering the thirteenth to the fteenth centuries,
these studies tend to focus on a specic community and argue that citizenship
was highly localized in scope and differed dramatically from one place to
another. Each community dened citizenship differently, through its local laws
and constitutions ( fueros), and attributed citizens with different sets of rights
and obligations.
Although studies of medieval citizenship are numerous, hardly any research
had been done on early modern Castilian citizenship. This is surprising given
that many scholars refer to Castilians as vecinos and habitually afrm the
importance of local communities to the governing of Spain, on one hand, and to
the generation of collective identities, on the other. In general, it is assumed
either that medieval practices, which were highly fragmented and locally based,
continued into the early modern period or that during the early modern period
citizenship became a exible regime, with no particular or clear guidelines.
The idea that early modern Castilian citizenship continued to be a highly
fragmented and locally based practice is due to the fact that Castilian local
laws and constitutions ( fueros) enumerate the conditions required to exercise
Vecindad: Local Communities 19

the rights attached to citizenship, yet these conditions differ for each commu-
nity, time, and the type of privilege or duty involved. The ordinances of Avila
(1487), for example, determine that in order to use the communal pasture, one
had to be a citizen, and that citizens are dened as individuals who live in the
community continuously or the largest part of the year, own a house, and pay
taxes. According to the ordinances of Jan (1573), citizens are individuals
who reside in the city with their family or who establish domicile in the juris-
diction. Citizens who wish to use the communal pasture have to request for-
mal admission into the community by petitioning the local council to recog-
nize them as citizens and by promising to reside in Jan for the next ten years.
In Archidona (1598), no one would be considered a citizen . . . without rst
being received by the council, guaranteeing his compliance with citizenships
duties, and buying a house and a vineyard within a year of his reception to the
community. Citizens of Archidona must also bring their families to the juris-
diction and live there for at least four continuous years.
If local laws and constitutions indicate the highly fragmented nature of
citizenship, laws pertaining to the kingdom as a wholesuch as the Siete
Partidas, Fuero Viejo, Fuero Real, the Recopilacin, and the Novsima Recop-
ilacinhardly make any mention of citizenship, let alone dene it. Although
they afrm the liberty of all vassals to change their place of residence and
become citizens of new communities, these laws fail to explain the mechanism
allowing this change. They simply state that any person who lives and re-
sides in any city, town or village of our kingdoms . . . that wishes to live in
another . . . can do so and become a citizen of a new community, and they
stress that prohibiting such a movement would be against justice and reason
and against their liberty, which is notorious to all.
This lack of explanation and the specicities of local legislation has led some
historians to the conclusion that during the early modern period no Castilian-
wide citizenship existed. This conclusion was further encouraged by the lack
of reference to citizenship in the legal literature. This literature describes some
of the rights and privileges of citizens, yet it fails to dene who the citizens are
and how citizenship can be obtained. Castilian political literature is also
silent on issues of citizenship. Alonso de Castrillo, Diego de Guerra, and
Sebastin de Covarrubias address the ciudadano rather than the vecino. They
describe only the urban citizen, who symbolizes both virtue and order, and use
him to portray the perfect republic rather than the existing one. Juan de
Mariana and Martn Gonzlez de Cellorigo see the kingdom as a community
of people subject to a king and so portray the ciudadano as a vassal rather than
as a citizen. In both cases, early modern political literature fails to illuminate
citizenship (vecindad) as practiced in Castilian local communities.
20 Vecindad: Local Communities

In spite of these misleading indications, common rules regarding citizenship

did exist in early modern Castile, and they were observed in local communities
throughout the kingdom in surprisingly similar ways. These rules can be re-
constructed only by examining concrete cases in which citizenship was applied
to individuals. I located some 1,500 such cases, in which either individuals
requested recognition as citizens or their citizenship status was discussed in
conjunction with their wish to enjoy benets or their obligation to comply
with certain duties. Because these cases include a discussion among individuals
who share the same values and a common knowledge of citizenship that we
lack, the only way to understand their meaning is by conducting comparative
research. The cases I have studied, dating from the late seventeenth and eigh-
teenth centuries, come from Seville, Madrid, and a series of communities in
Northern Spain that were subjected to the jurisdiction of the royal court
(chancillera) of Valladolid. Because of their origin in different local circum-
stances and traditions, information missing in some cases is often made ex-
plicit in others. Also, different aspects of the same problem emerge because of
the difference in individual and collective conditions, needs, and expectations.
There are two ways to look at citizenship. First, there is a formal story to tell
about how people requested recognition as citizens from local councils. This
story identies the procedures and conditions for obtaining a declaration of
citizenship. It ties the practice of citizenship to local circumstances and ex-
plains how this practice changed as immigration policies were modied over
time. This is, indeed, the story told by most historians. But the cases I reviewed
also suggest the existence of a second story, a story that emerges from beneath
the formalities and the often dry and repetitive legal discourse. It explains
what citizenship practices and the changes in them meant, why certain pre-
requisites for citizenship were adopted, and what happened when they were
absent. Rather than focusing on legal requirements and formal procedures,
this second story focuses on the theories that informed them, on the rela-
tion between social and legal classications, and on the community that was
constructed as a result. Using records from late seventeenth- and eighteenth-
century Seville I will make a case for this second story, one that interrogates the
meaning of citizenship and describes the various ways individuals could ob-
tain rights in local communities.

Citizenship in Seville
According to documents stored in Sevilles municipal archives, people
who wanted to become citizens of the city had to petition the local council. In
the seventeenth century and until the 1710s, those born in the city presented
Vecindad: Local Communities 21

their baptismal record and an afdavit stating that they intended to remain in
the jurisdiction. Newcomers had to prove, also by afdavit, that they had
resided in the city for at least ten years as heads of households. During this
period, it was explicitly asserted that the afdavit was sufcient: candidates
did not have to present any other form of proof, and witnesses were heard only
in cases of doubt. A standing committee (caballeros diputados de vecindades)
studied the petitions and advised the city council on how to proceed. In some
cases, third partiesfor example, the guild to which the candidate belonged
or would join if admittedalso expressed their views regarding the candi-
dates acceptability to the community.
After 1710, gradual changes were introduced in this regime. Codied in
1743, these changes required that all candidates present proof of their resi-
dence in the city and their condition as heads of households. Possible proofs
included the testimony of a parish priest or the submission of original receipts
for rental fees. After these documents were collected, the candidates presented
witnesses. These witnesses, usually friends and neighbors, would testify that
the petitioner had expressed in words and acts his desire to remain in Seville
permanently. Parallel procedures were instituted for newcomers married to
local women. These newcomers had to present marriage certicates and orally
identify their place of residence, and they had to promise to remain perma-
nently in the community. In these cases, and those of other newcomers, once
the les were completed the representative of municipal interests ( procurador)
advised the council how to proceed. If and when citizenship was granted,
newcomers took an oath that they would maintain residence in the city, back-
ing it by a security deposit called anza de guardar vecindad. Also according
to the 1743 ruling, those born in Seville could continue to request citizenship
in the old way, by submitting only a petition and an afdavit. Native-born
petitioners were not required to take an oath or to secure nancially their
continued residence in the community.
Further modications in the citizenship acquisition procedures occurred in
the 1770s. During this period authorities in Seville expressed their concern re-
garding the presence in the city of a great number of wealthy inhabitants, many
of them foreign merchants who, despite their prolonged residence, had never
requested citizenship. Their lack of commitment to the community had impor-
tant consequences. As noncitizens, they paid no local taxes. In a system where
taxes were levied on the community as a whole but were distributed among
and paid only by those recognized as citizens, individuals classied as citizens
had to carry an unfair tax burden. Citizenship, the municipal authorities now
claimed, was both a privilege and a duty. An interested party could request it,
but the authorities could also impose it on people who did not wish to claim it.
22 Vecindad: Local Communities

Sevilles authorities then proceeded to identify those they considered citizens,

and they required them to act as citizens by demanding that they pay taxes.
In less than a century, Sevilles attitude towards immigrants changed dra-
matically. On one hand, immigrants who were once trusted on the basis of an
afdavit that included only their own declaration now had to supply addi-
tional proofs of both their residence in the city as heads of households and
their intention to remain in the jurisdiction permanently. On the other hand,
by the 1770s the authorities also demanded that wealthy inhabitants commit
themselves to the community by becoming citizens and paying taxes.
These changes could be explained by local circumstances. In the early six-
teenth century, Seville was designated as the main port of communication and
trade between Spain and Spanish America. Following this designation, it
experienced enormous growth sustained mainly by immigration. Although
many immigrants were transients on their way to the New World and never
established a permanent relationship with the local community, others re-
mained in Seville, establishing residence and becoming citizens. In the next
century, prosperity declined. General trends of depopulation and economic
readjustments experienced elsewhere in Castile in the seventeenth century
played a role in this, but local circumstance contributed as well: Seville suf-
fered a series of epidemics and drought, and by mid-seventeenth century,
maritime routes had shifted to Cdiz. This shift, which was gradual, was
formally acknowledged in the 1710s when the House of Trade (the main
institution charged with controlling communication and trade with the Indies)
and the local merchant guild were transferred from Seville to Cdiz. Seville
bitterly fought this decision until its nal defeat in the 1740s. Chronicles
dating from this period describe a depopulated city suffering a severe eco-
nomic crisis. Urban structures were inadequate, and insufcient housing led
rental prices to rise. According to contemporaries, with the city in decay, most
of its immigrants were extremely poor and rarely useful to the community.
This perceptionof the city being invaded by the poor and unworthywas
especially powerful between 1729 and 1733 when Philip V and his court
temporarily resided in Seville. The court attracted many new immigrants and
although its presence generated employment, it also augmented public ex-
penses and exasperated the desire for order. Perceptions of crisis and insuf-
cient social control intensied in the 1770s when the Spanish monopoly
system collapsed altogether, and free trade between Spain and its American
colonies was gradually introduced. After the 1770s Seville, once a world city,
was reduced to a provincial capital.
In spite of the gradual nature of these changes, and the frequent turns and
tides, two clear crisis periods emerge: the rst decades of the eighteenth century
Vecindad: Local Communities 23

and the 1770s. Because these were also the periods during which citizenship
practices were modied, it is possible to argue that a link existed between
socioeconomic circumstances, immigration policies, and municipal regulation
of citizenship. As long as Seville served as the main port of communication with
Spanish America, the local authorities allowed immigrants to become citizens
simply by petitioning and by personally ensuring that they had resided in the
city for more than ten years. As Sevilles special privileges faded, and the ght to
preserve them failed (1710s1740s), the authorities adopted a more restricted
vision of citizenship. The easy integration of newcomers was no longer encour-
aged, and the authorities created obstacles to citizenship by demanding that
candidates present more proofs (such as witnesses and written receipts for rent
paid) and by requiring a longer administrative process. By the 1770s, with the
complete breakdown of the monopoly system and as the city plunged into
economic crisis, the main objective of the authorities was to ease economic
pressure by extending citizenship to all permanent, wealthy residents.
This analysis leaves many questions unanswered. For example, we dont
know why until the early eighteenth century ten-year residence could trans-
form inhabitants into citizens. Nor do we know why after 1743 candidates for
citizenship had to prove that they wished to remain in the community perma-
nently or how the municipality could force some inhabitants into citizenship
in the 1770s against their will. This forcing of citizenship was justied by
Sevilles authorities on the grounds that Castilian law clearly indicated who
should be considered a citizen. Persons who met the prerequisites for citizen-
ship could be considered citizens whether they requested this status or not. Yet
the Castilian law mentioned by Sevilles authorities is nowhere to be found. It
is not enumerated in Castilian legal codes, nor is it included in Castilian legal
and political literature.
The search for this missing law becomes especially important once we
establish that on many occasions Sevilles authorities accepted as citizens peo-
ple who did not comply with the normal requirements for citizenship. For
example, in 1735 Sevilles council granted citizenship to Antonio Joseph de
Saavedra, whose grandparents, once citizens of Seville, had left the city, and
who resided elsewhere. Was this decision a simple proof of illegal and cor-
rupt practices, a gap between law and its implementation? Antonio Joseph
testied that his family originated from Seville and that its individual members
continued to act as citizens of Seville. The members of the city council gave
credit to his allegations. They noted that Antonio Josephs parents and grand-
parents paid some local taxes and they agreed that their continuing engage-
ment with the community demonstrated that despite their absence from the
city they did not renounce their citizenship. What were they talking about?
24 Vecindad: Local Communities

Castilian Citizenship: The Common Ground

Sevilles citizenship practices point to rules not included in municipal or

royal legislation and not mentioned in legal or political literature. At rst,
many of these rules appear to arise from ius commune theories about the
extension and meaning of medieval citizenship in Italy. In the fourteenth
century, jurist Bartolus of Sassoferrato emphasized the voluntary nature of
human associations. He adopted the Aristotelian view according to which
communities did not naturally exist but that their members who united to live
together under the same law collectively created them. He concluded that the
wish to live together under the same law, expressed in a contract or a pact, was
the sole criterion for identifying people as citizens or noncitizens. Regardless
of their place of birth and origin, people willing to join this contract or pact
could be transformed into citizens. Their willingness to join the pact could be
implicitly established by the fact that they acted as citizens. Although acting as
a citizen could have many different expressions, Bartolus specically men-
tioned that moving the greater part of ones economic resources from one
community to the other, for example, could indicate that a person had made a
decision to join the pact and become a citizen. In the next generation, Baldus
of Perugia added to this theory by stating that native citizens had a natural
inclination, a habitus, in favor of their community of origin. Yet newcomers
could also acquire this habitus once they lived in the city for a sufcient period
with the intention of integrating into it. In such a case, these individuals would
acquire a second nature that would link them to their new community.
Thereafter, ius commune jurists portrayed citizenship as a process of civic
conversion. It consisted of an ofcial recording of a change of heart and,
once it was completed, newcomers had to be granted equality with natives.
The reception of ius commune began in Castile in the thirteenth century.
From that moment and until the late eighteenth century, it was the only law
taught alongside canon law in law faculties in Spain, where royal and munici-
pal law were completely absent. Jurists, as well as royal and local ofcials
who were often trained in law, used the ius commune in their daily activities,
creatively combining it with local understanding, customs, and legal tradi-
tions. Ius commune also inuenced the codication of local laws, which
adopted many of its terms, ideas, and institutions. It encouraged the enact-
ment of Castilian legal codes, such as the Siete Partidas and the various Re-
copilaciones. Within a legal structure fragmented by kingdoms and local
communities, ius commune was virtually the only law common to all Cas-
tilians and probably all Spaniards.
Vecindad: Local Communities 25

The mixing of ius commune with local understanding, practices, and needs
produced an unwritten yet frequently invoked Castilian common law. This
law, which did not depend on legislation, nor was reproduced in it, was never-
theless cited by litigants in defense of their citizenship rights and by commu-
nities in their efforts to forcibly enroll citizens as well as in their refusal to
accept undeserving applicants. Jurists were aware of the fact that this law
originated in ius commune. Yet for most people citing it, this law depended
on natural law, rather than on man-made legal arrangements. It was common
to all humanity, it had been practiced since antiquity, and it was based on the
way God created this world (see chapter 8).

Castilian Citizenship: The First Premise

In reconstructing this Castilian common citizenship law from particular
allegations and petitions argued in the late seventeenth and eighteenth century,
it becomes clear that those wishing to become citizens and those ghting
against it considered this law to include two basic premises. The rst and most
important was the understanding that citizenship was a natural right, which
people could exercise freely: According to the freedom that according to
natural law we have, each one of us can renounce the citizenship that he has
and live and become a citizen in another place according to his choosing.
The sole requirement for people who wanted to join a community was simply
that they express their desire to do so. During this period it was repeatedly
asserted, at times with great lamentation, that freedom of immigration pre-
vented community members from refusing to admit newcomers who ex-
pressed their wish to join them: In order to accept us as citizens, no other
circumstances are needed except for an expression of will. Petitioners used
these arguments to force municipalities to accept them, and they insisted that
communities were not authorized to refuse to grant citizenship, being that
the passage from one citizenship to the other was a free act according to royal
laws. Furthermore, the law allows everyone to become a citizen where he
pleases and every person who wanted to change his citizenship from one
place to another . . . could do so freely.


The most important factor limiting the freedom to chose where to live
and become a citizen was that citizenship was available only to the head of a
household. Typically, heads of households were adult males. They were distin-
guished from other adult males by their being responsible for an independent
26 Vecindad: Local Communities

political unit, the (extended) family. This usually implied that they resided in
an independent residencewhether as proprietors or as renters,and that,
preferably, they were married and had children. Women and minors (under
age twenty-ve) were not eligible for citizenship. In the case of women, it was
generally understood that, as members of a household, they obtained some of
the benets of citizenship by way of dependence. They rst enjoyed the rights
attached to the citizenship status of their fathers and, upon marriage, they
attained some of the privileges attached to the citizenship status of their hus-
bands. This state changed only when women became independent heads of
households. In these cases, women gained a full legal capacity and, among
other things, could express a legally binding intention, such as the intention to
acquire citizenship. This reality was evident in the documents I consulted:
only women who were widows or solitary spinsters petitioned for citizenship.
The case of minors (persons under twenty-ve) was much more complex.
Unlike women, minors had no legal capacity at all and, as a result, their ability
to declare their intention to become citizens was legally impaired. Because
they were under the protection of legal guardians, it was questionable whether
minors could express an independent intention to become citizens. Neverthe-
less, the ability of minors to acquire citizenship was an extremely important
issue in cases where they owned cows, sheep, and the like and wished to use
the communal pasture. When the minors lived in the same community as their
guardians, and it was in this community that they owned property, the ques-
tion of their ability to use communal pastures was seldom raised because they
could exercise the privileges of citizenship (use of pastures) as members of a
citizens household. But when the guardian was not a citizen of the community
where the minor owned property, a decision was needed regarding the minors
ability to acquire an independent citizenship. Certain municipalities allowed
minors to obtain (or retain) citizenship despite the foreignness of their guard-
ians and even despite their physical absence from the jurisdiction, yet other
communities refused to do so.


Castilian citizenship law did not restrict foreigners to the kingdom, non-
vassals of the king, or non-Christians from obtaining local citizenship. During
the medieval period, the possibility of granting citizenship to these people was
openly admitted, and their presence, especially during the reconquest and
resettlement stage, was even encouraged. The openness of Castilian commu-
nities with regard to Catholic foreigners and nonvassals continued during the
early modern period. There are multiple examples of individuals from both of
Vecindad: Local Communities 27

these categories being accepted as citizens, and on many occasions it was

openly attested that questions of foreignness and the right to be in Spain
were irrelevant to the admission of people as citizens. It was on this ground
that Bartolom French, native of Ireland, was accepted as a citizen of Seville in
1743, and Diego Roberto Tolosa, native of France, became a citizen of Mlaga
in 1748. Indeed, foreigners to the kingdom could become citizens in any of
the villages of these your domains without the councils being able to impede it
in any way, or speak against it, as it is expressly ordered in your royal orders on
the matter.
Although the admission of nonvassals and foreigners continued, in a long
and complicated process, which I cannot cover here, stretching from the four-
teenth to the seventeenth century, Castile gradually became a territory in
which only orthodox Catholics could live. First came the expulsion of the Jews
in 1492, then the growing encroachment on the rights of Muslims to practice
their faith, eventually leading to the expulsion of all descendants of Moors in
the beginning of the seventeenth century. Added was the growing persecution
of Christian heretics, Protestants included. Since non-Christians and non-
Catholics could not live on Castilian soil, they clearly could not become cit-
izens of Castilian communities (see chapter 6).


Despite longstanding freedom of migration, which admitted all Catho-
lics of all estates and conditions to citizenship as long as they were heads of
household and as long as they expressed their desire to become citizens, estate
and genealogy could become important in exceptional cases. These cases in-
cluded citizenship in behetras cerradas, that is, in a special type of commu-
nities, which were granted the privilege of excluding people of certain estates
and social condition from citizenship. Las Ormazas (jurisdiction of Burgos)
was one such community. In 1745, it refused to admit Pedro Ruz to citizen-
ship because he was a noble (hidalgo), while the community was a behetra
cerrada of simple folk ( pecheros). Pedros offer to pay taxes was insufcient.
It was unclear if his children would feel bound to his offer and would agree to
pay taxes, and, at any rate, the exclusion of nobles from the community was
not only linked to tax payment, from which they were exempted, but was also
motivated by other concerns, such as their participation in the local militia.
Fenar (jurisdiction of Len) was another behetra cerrada. In 1773, its au-
thorities argued that Santiago Morn, who had resided in the settlement
for more than eighteen years and was married to a native, could not use
the communal pasture nor participate in the council meetings because the
28 Vecindad: Local Communities

community excluded all people who were not of the noble estate of hidalgo,
with letters and orders to prove it. Santiago could be acknowledged as
citizen only if he proved his quality as a nobleman.
Genealogy could also intervene in other cases. In 1758, the council of Tres-
paderne (jurisdiction of Burgos) refused to grant citizenship to Santiago Gar-
ca because of his familys employment in mechanical or vile occupation.
All other members of the community were pure of blood, and none of them
was ever employed in such low ofces. Admitting a person who did not re-
spond to these characteristics would endanger the collective well-being by
destroying the reputation of the community and introducing divisions among
its citizens. Thereafter, citizens would no longer be equal to one another and
would no longer be able to drink from the same cup. The council of Tres-
paderne also stressed that whereas people of different characteristics, status,
and estates could easily coexist in a big community, in a small settlement like
their own, such a practice would be disastrous.

Castilian Citizenship: The Second Premise

The rst premise of Castilian local citizenship thus asserted that Cath-
olic heads of households living in Castile, independent of their condition as
natives or vassals and in most cases independent of their estate and genealogy,
could become citizens by expressing a desire to tie themselves permanently to a
specic local community. It further stated that once this desire was expressed,
communities could not refuse to admit these people as citizens. A second
premise followed, according to which all such heads of households had to be
integrated in one community or the other. This view was expressed by the
council of Getafe (jurisdiction of Madrid) when it argued against the petition
of three citizens to terminate their relationship with the community. This
petition had to be denied, the authorities said, because the three had not
obtained a new citizenship in another community. No one can be without a
known citizenship (vecindad conocida) because this lack of citizenship
meant a complete personal liberty, which could not be permitted. Heads of
households could change their residence and citizenship, yet no one was al-
lowed to live on his own. People with neither xed domicile nor local loyalty
were dangerous because they neither served the republic, nor married, nor
paid taxes. Belonging to two communities at the same time was also consid-
ered abnormal. Bls Alvarez could not be a citizen of Pardav (jurisdiction of
Len) in 1787 because he was already accepted as citizen of another village.
This solution was both legally and morally justied. No one could feel loyal to
two communities at the same time and common decency required that a
Vecindad: Local Communities 29

single person not enjoy citizenship rights in two communities, nor be required
to comply with citizenship obligations twice. The notion that people could be
citizens of only one community at the time also justied the 1798 exclusion of
Manuel Rojo Martn y Nstor from the town meeting of Arensena de Abajo
(jurisdiction of La Rioja). Manuel was a citizen of Villarejo and as a true
and complete citizen of that other village, he could not also be a citizen
of Arensena.

Obtaining Citizenship
People seeking recognition as citizens had to petition the local council
and to supply the necessary proofs. Such was the case in Seville, but this
practice was also followed in many other contemporary communities in Cas-
tile in which the councilor the entire citizen body in cases of small commu-
nitiescould grant or refuse to grant citizenship to newcomers. But if com-
munities were forced to accept people who requested status as citizens, what
was the meaning of formal citizenship acquisition procedures?
In spite of the formal proceedings, it is clear that in Castile the role of local
councils and communities in the classication of citizens was limited. For
example, when the status of individuals was discussed as a by-product of their
wish to enjoy certain rights or their duty to obey certain obligations, it was
often apparent that the citizenship status of individuals who had no previous
ofcial recognition could be acknowledged. On these occasions, formal ad-
mission into the community was not at stake. In spite of the absence of a
formal declaration, these individuals were considered citizens and therefore
worthy of treatment as citizens, their citizenship coming into being even be-
fore the community and its organs intervened. The local judge told Agustn
Vzquez, who had resided with his family in Pozo Antiguo (jurisdiction of
Zamora) for nine years that, in his condition as noncitizen, he could no longer
use the communal pasture. In response, Agustn obtained from the provin-
cial judge (corregidor) a ruling that he had always been a citizen although he
had never obtained formal recognition. The authorities of Villarramiel (juris-
diction of Palencia) told Melchor Pardo in 1791 that he could not receive a
land plot because his citizenship was unclear. He appealed the decision to the
royal court (chancillera) and presented proofs that he was a true and legiti-
mate citizen. These proofs included his residence in an open house, and his
willingness to remain in the community and contribute to its nances. Mel-
chor specically stated that to be recognized as a citizen, there was no need for
a formal reception. Indeed, the community and its authorities did not confer
citizenship as much as recognize its existence. Although the authorities of
30 Vecindad: Local Communities

Villarramiel agreed that this might be the case in some communities, they
insisted that in their community only those formally acknowledged as citizens
could enjoy the rights of citizenship. Melchor, the authorities explained, knew
about this custom. The fact that he had not requested to be formally admitted
as citizen until the present demonstrated that he did not want to become a
citizen. The appellate court (chancillera) disagreed and declared Melchor a
citizen from the day he rst became worthy of this status.
The practice of a posteriori recognition demonstrated that other mecha-
nisms for acquiring citizenship existed parallel to the formal procedures.
These mechanisms constituted citizenship without the intervention of the au-
thorities. They allowed citizenship to come into being by persons enacting the
role of citizens, thereby proving themselves worthy of citizenship. This auto-
matic conversion of people from foreigners to citizens was the natural result of
a theory that determined that people became citizens by virtue of their inten-
tion, and their intention alone. Although this intention had to be veried and
embraced by the receiving community, in both theory and practice, the activity
of the community and its organs was limited to this verication.
Many petitioners explicitly stated this fact. They insisted that local councils
did not constitute them as citizens but only recognized that they were already
citizens. Indeed, citizenship acquisition procedures only declared what was
established beforehand. As Agustn Cordovilla Snchez, who defended his
right to use the communal pasture, put it: Even without the solemnity of an
expressed reception to the community, effectuated by the council, he should be
considered strictly as a citizen, because of his continuous residence and the
settled house that he owned.
This understanding of citizenship did not stop many Castilian communities
from maintaining formal procedures for citizenship acquisition. These com-
munities, for example, Cordobilla (jurisdiction of Salamanca), Villarramiel
(Palencia), Ojacastro (La Rioja), Jan, and Archidona, stated that, unless their
authorities issued formal declarations, no one should be allowed to enjoy the
rights of citizenship. But even in these cases communal recognition was a
political rather than a legal necessity. Formal reception allowed the commu-
nity to identify its citizen body, and it served to limit the discussion about the
correct classication of individuals.
The idea that citizenship was a status that was recognized, rather than
created, by local authorities allows us to understand how these authorities
were able to force people into citizenship. In the 1770s, the council of Seville
argued that the people it targeted, indeed, forced to act as citizens by paying
taxes, were citizens whether they had requested citizenship or not. Their cit-
izenship came into being by way of prescription and by the fact that they acted
Vecindad: Local Communities 31

as citizens. Since they were citizens, they were required to comply with citizen-
ship duties. Hence, despite municipal insistence on maintaining formal pro-
cedures for citizenship acquisition, even in Seville citizenship could be con-
stituted on its own without municipal intervention. It could be created by a
public perception that certain individuals behaved as citizens. Individuals who
were perceived as citizens of Seville had to clarify their wish to dissociate with
the community if they wanted to remain outsiders. Only such an open and
explicit clarication would counter the general rule according to which he
who acted as a citizen, or was reputed to be a citizen, was indeed a citizen. The
discussion in Seville in the 1770s pointed directly to this question: He who
lives in a settled house in these kingdoms must be considered citizen . . . he has
against him the presumption and it must be his duty to establish, by some facts
or cases, that he had been here with no intention to remain. Silence would
imply consent.

Loss of Status
The duality between a formal regime of citizenship by declaration and
an implied reception into the community by enacting the role of citizen was
paralleled by the ability to loseformally or implicitlythe status of citizen.
In some communities, such as Madrid, formal procedures existed allowing
citizens to terminate their relationship with the community by petitioning
their desavecindamiento (literally, the undoing of citizenship). Unless such
petitions were made, people continued to be citizens, independent of their
activities and wishes. Yet, in most communities, people could lose their status
as citizens if they transferred their residence to another jurisdiction where they
acted as citizens, or if they failed to comply with citizenship duties. No petition
or formal declaration was required in these case, and people who considered
themselves citizens could thus nd out one day that they were no longer
citizens. The authorities of San Miguel de la Ribera (jurisdiction of Zamora)
did not allow Baltazar Delgado to use the communal pasture in 1769 because
his citizenship had expired once he refused to comply with citizens obliga-
tions, the last straw being his unwillingness to serve as a local judge (alcalde
ordinario) the previous year. From the moment Baltazar failed to act as a
citizen, the authorities said, he demonstrated that he no longer felt a member
of the community and thus he was no longer a citizen. Manuel Rojo Martn y
Nstor was told in 1789 that the authorities of Arensena de Abajo (jurisdic-
tion of La Rioja) no longer considered him a citizen. To publicly demonstrate
that he was still a citizen, Manuel attended the council meeting, in which only
citizens were allowed to participate. Alas, the other members refused to admit
32 Vecindad: Local Communities

him. In his distress, he petitioned the royal court (chancillera) to issue a

formal declaration of his citizenship. To his displeasure, the court sided with
Arensena, ruling that although he had been a citizen once, twenty-one years
earlier he had moved to Villarejo, where he now resided with his wife and
family. Under these circumstances and because he had not paid taxes or other
public expenses for many years or participated regularly in the council meet-
ings his citizenship in Arensena had automatically expired.

Verifying Intentions
Intention to become a citizen was thus sufcient to constitute citizen-
ship, and its absence was a cause to terminate the relationship between an
individual and a community. But who veried the existence of this intention
and when did verication take place? As mentioned earlier, the local authori-
ties veried citizenship when they exercised their power to declare formally
that certain individuals were citizens. Verication, however, could also be
implicit in the activities of these authorities. Their willingness to accept taxes
paid by certain individuals was considered an implicit recognition of citizen-
ship. Those allowed to act as citizensfor example, those who were em-
ployed in local ofces or used the communal pasturewere also tacitly ad-
mitted as citizens. In some cases, the identication between the exercise of
rights and the subsequent acquisition of citizenship was such that people con-
fused one with the other. In 1776, Vicente de Saura asked the authorities of
Valladolid whether his nomination as a rural judge (alcalde de la hermandad)
implied that he was accepted as a citizen or whether he was still required to
request formal admission to the community.
Status verication was not limited to the local authorities. Other members
of the community could also exercise it by implicitly recognizing people as
citizens when they tolerated their behavior as citizens. Once allowed to act
as citizens, people were reputed as citizens and were instituted as citizens.
These processes involved in acting as a citizen were social rather than legal or
political. They silently operated in day-to-day interactions. People could lead
their goats to the communal pasture, participate in local assemblies, and pay
taxes without asking for recognition as citizens or having to prove that they
were citizens. Their acceptance into the community and their transformation
into citizens were implicit. In the absence of conict or fear of conict, there
was no reason for things to happen differently.
Formal decisions were required only in exceptional cases when conicts
occurred. Conicts could be generated by the municipal wish to control immi-
gration. The authorities of Uruuela (jurisdiction of La Rioja) refused to recog-
Vecindad: Local Communities 33

nize Jorge Garca as a citizen in 1748 because the community was so small and
limited, that it was insufcient even to contain the existing citizens, their cattle
and elds. In 1770, Arisgotas (jurisdiction of Toledo) explained that Pedro
de los Infantes could not become a citizen because communal resources could
not support an additional member. Occasionally, councils paired restricted
local resources with the conviction that a specic newcomer would contribute
nothing to the community. This was the case in 1782 when Valverde de la Sierra
(jurisdiction of Len) refused to recognize Joseph Corvillos as a citizen. Joseph
was a poor man who had no interest in remaining in the jurisdiction where he
owned nothing. His presence in the community was burdensome to the com-
mon in this sterile land, that suffered annually from heavy snows because of its
narrowness and its high elevation, and in which during the four months of the
winter we often cannot leave our own houses. The matching of local circum-
stances with the specic characteristics of certain candidates also happened in
contrary cases: communities sometimes feared that newcomers would monop-
olize the use of communal property or that their citizenship would limit munici-
pal liberty. Such fears motivated attempts to exclude Agustn Vzquez from his
community of residence in 1784, judging that he was too wealthy and would
use too much pastureland. Jorge Garca was rejected for the same reason in
1748: he was much too afuent and had too many properties and animals.
Conicts concerning the citizenship of individuals could also be motivated
by other considerations. In 1684, the authorities of Villamayor de Campos
(jurisdiction of Zamora) refused to admit Pedro de Luaces Seijas to citizenship
on the grounds that his character was questionable and that he did not get along
with his neighbors. His occupation as a barber did not help his petition; the
community had already contracted the services of another barber, and it was
too small to employ both. In 1753, Estepar (jurisdiction of Burgos) refused to
admit Jos Quintanillas to citizenship, explaining that he was a litigious person
who acted proudly and pretended to dominate his fellow men. The local
council narrated how, during the time he resided in the community, he mal-
treated and often insulted the other members whom he considered simple
folk. Similar allegations were also made in 1784 against Agustn Vzquez and
his wife, who were accused of having bad tempers and a family that was far too
large to support within the connes of a small settlement.
Some cases give us a clear indication of the importance of personal ani-
mosities in the generation of conicts regarding the citizenship of individ-
uals. In 1678, Marcelo de Zancada explained that he failed to obtain recog-
nition as a citizen because of a debt two councilmen owed to his current
employee. According to Jernimo Francos, Aguilar de Campos (jurisdiction of
Valladolid) imposed new conditions on his citizenship in 1735 because of the
34 Vecindad: Local Communities

animosity of the local judge. In 1782, Agustn Snchez pointed to Nicols Sn-
chez as the person responsible for his exclusion from the community of Cor-
dobilla (jurisdiction of Salamanca). Nicols, who hated Snchez and his fam-
ily, made sure that the local authorities would not permit him to use the
communal pasture. He did so by arguing that Snchez was not a citizen despite
the fact that his citizenship had previously been an accepted fact.
There are many other examples of the way personal animosities led to
questioning the status of individuals whose citizenship was already acknowl-
edged. Whether the animosity was new, or whether rotation in local ofce
holding suddenly allowed old-time competitors (or friends) to have a say in
local affairs, it was clear that a persons citizenship could be contested at
certain periods, consensual in others. Froyan Rodrguez, who lived in Fuente
del Fresno (jurisdiction of Madrid) for more than twenty years, was told one
day that he no longer belonged to the community. Like other people involved
in these kinds of confrontations, he argued that this request was new and
unexpected. He had been recognized as a member before and was unsure what
had happened.
The questioning of status was considered a social, as well as a legal, affair. In
1760, Zacaras de la Torre was ordered to leave the room where the annual
communal ofce-holding election was held. His protests, that he was a cit-
izen with voting rights, were silenced, as were the allegations of his supporters.
The damage done to his honor was irreparable. In order to defend his reputa-
tion and prestige, he was forced to le a complaint against Alonso Crespo, the
councilman who initiated his expulsion from the meeting. Honor and reputa-
tion were also central to Manuel Rojo Martn y Nstor, who in 1798 was
expelled from the meeting of the council of Arensena de Abajo (jurisdiction of
La Rioja). The scene was so powerful, and so public, he later said, that after
it took place his wife refused to set foot in the village.
The exchange between Germn Salcedomarquis of Fuertehijar, caballero
of the military order of Carlos III, and a judge of the appellate court (chan-
cillera) of Valladolidand the community of Buitrago de Lozoya (juris-
diction of Madrid) was extremely revealing of such tensions. Germn was
granted citizenship in the community in 1788 under the condition that he
reside in the settlement and pay taxes. The following year, the council refused
to continue to recognize him as a citizen. According to Germn, he was re-
jected because several local cattle-raisers viewed him as a competitor and
wanted him expelled from the community. Admitting that Germn was using
too much pastureland for their liking, the authorities of Buitrago explained
their refusal differently: by virtue of his noble estate Germn was exempt from
tax payment, and because of his services to the crown, he resided rst in
Vecindad: Local Communities 35

Valladolid and then in Madrid. His initial promises to pay taxes and reside in
the community remained unfullled, although in both cases his refusal to
comply could be legally justied. Yet the most powerful allegation against
Germn was that his original acceptance as a citizen was made under duress.
He arrived in the jurisdiction one morning on an unannounced visit. He came
to the council meeting and, aided by the local judge (alcalde mayor) who was
his ally, inuenced the members into recognizing his citizenship. There was no
room for discussion or time to organize opposition. The whole question sur-
prised the community, and the process itself was heavily inuenced by the
quality of the petitioner, his circumstances, and the respect the local
council owed him as a nobleman, a jurist, and a member of the court. From the
perspective of the local council, the whole affair was violent. The physical
presence of the petitioner literally left the members with no choice but to
accede. The appellate court, where Germn served as a judge, agreed with
him. It accepted Germns position that he had always been a citizen of the
community and that he had meant to be one. It also implicitly adhered to his
understanding that the refusal to recognize him as a citizen was not genuine
but only represented the economic interests of a few powerful citizens.

The Importance of Citizenship

Although in many communities citizenship was an important issue,
which could lead on occasions to severe and even violent confrontations,
citizenship was not meaningful enough in all cases and under all circumstances
to justify an effort to obtain it. Madrid represents an extreme example of this
reality. The fastest growing town in early modern Spain, it doubled in size
between 1563 and the end of the sixteenth century, and tripled by 1630. It
had 120,000 inhabitants in 1700, 150,000 in 1760, and 200,000 in 1800.
This enormous growth was sustained mainly by immigration. In its function
as a court and seat of the Spanish central administration, Madrid attracted
large numbers of nobles, bureaucrats, candidates for jobs, and a great variety
of service providers. It is estimated that in the sixteenth to the eighteenth
century, about a half to two-thirds of its inhabitants had been born outside the
city, these numbers being especially high between 1560 and 1625, and be-
tween 1750 and 1800. Contemporaries referred to this reality by pointing
out that only Madrid was court (solo Madrid es corte), that it was a city of
foreigners, and that it was the common patria of all Spaniards.
The functioning of Madrid as a capital city obscured the existence of a local
community, with local needs and local jurisdiction. People coming to the city
were too obsessed with the court, too dependent on the king, too powerful, or
36 Vecindad: Local Communities

simply too disrespectful of the local community. This had a direct effect on the
formation of the local citizenry. Many longtime residents never requested
formal citizenship, nor claimed to have obtained it by way of performance.
Luis Manuel de Quiones arrived in Madrid as a child in 1662. Having
studied there and then married a native-born wife, he was employed rst as a
solicitor ( procurador) in the royal councils and then as a public notary. After
some fty years of residence in the court, he requested the town council to
declare that he had been a citizen of Madrid for at least thirty years. The
reason for his request was openly confessed: he now wished to obtain a seat in
the parliament (cortes), a seat available only to people with at least six years of
formal citizenship in the community. According to the municipal authorities,
his lack of interest in being recognized as a citizen earlier on represented a lack
of commitment to the town, which was an attitude shared by many people
residing in Madrid. This attitude was also denounced in the 1720s and again
in the 1790s, when the members of the local council complained that the habit
of requesting citizenship was fading away. Frequently practiced in the old
days, it was no longer commonly exercised. The authorities reasoned that
most newcomers did not request admission into Madrids community either
because they did not recognize the utility of citizenship or because of the
confusion of the court.

Proving an Intention
One question remains unanswered. People could become citizens by
virtue of their decision and without the need for a formal declaration. But how
was this decision communicated to the local community? How could commu-
nities, their councils, and citizens know that a decision to become a citizen had
been made?
As mentioned earlier, according to the ius commune, newcomers could
make their intentions known through their behavior. People demonstrated by
their actions their wish to become citizens. This implied that communities
were forced to interpret the meaning of certain activities in order to determine
a persons state of mind. Ius commune jurists argued that a ten-year residence
or marriage to a local woman could serve as adequate proofs of the new-
comers intentions, and these views were adopted in Castilian communities as
demonstrated by the case of Seville. Following the conviction that citizen-
ship depended on intentions rather than external acts, however, Castilian
individuals, corporations, communities, and authorities constantly battled
with how to identify the behavior that would lead to citizenship in a particular
case given the circumstances of each candidate and community.
Vecindad: Local Communities 37

Take for example the most common claimthat intention could be proved
by a prolonged residence. Individuals who lived in a community for a long
period could be thought of as people who tied their future to that community
and, by implication, as people that wanted to become citizens. This was the
opinion of ius commune jurists, who argued that a ten-year residence was the
best proof for the newcomers intentions, and this rule was frequently adopted
in Castilian local legislation, that included a requirement that candidates re-
side in the community for several years before they could acquire citizenship.
However, residence, which during the resettlement period was a necessary
condition and the raison dtre of granting privilege to people, was now pre-
sented as a legal presumption. During the early modern period, it could be
used to discover the newcomers intentions, but its use was neither necessary
nor sufcient to prove those intentions. People who did not reside in the
community but who could prove their attachment to it in other ways could be
considered citizens. For example, Toms del Corrral successfully argued that
he was a citizen of Soto (jurisdiction of Cantabria) despite not residing in the
community because he had a house, with family and servants capable of
complying with all municipal demands and tax payment. . . . No one can be
forced to live and reside personally in a place, because this would be against
natural liberty, and is prohibited by law. In question was not behavior, but
its meaning: As intention is an internal act, only known by God . . . it can only
be manifested or discovered by observing external acts, which in this case
demonstrate that my client had a continuous wish to remain in the village.
The interpretation communities gave to residence usually depended on local
circumstances and on local perceptions concerning the character and inten-
tions of the people seeking recognition as citizens or noncitizens. On occa-
sions, individual activity was interpreted according to the classication of
petitioners as members of certain groups. People born in the community were
entitled to the presumption that they wanted to be citizens. It was generally
agreed that natives implicitly expressed their desire to be citizens by virtue of
their continued residence in the jurisdiction. In most cases, this was sufcient
to demonstrate that they were citizens; the native born were not generally
required to perform any formal act, or to reside in the community for a specic
length of time. Indeed, only exceptional communities forced native-born per-
sons to request admission to the community by proving their intentions.
Royal servants enjoyed a similar presumption. By denition and unless
otherwise proved, their absence from the community did not indicate their
desire to sever ties with it. In their case, absence was considered involuntary,
since royal service was a duty they could not refuse. It was often unclear,
however, whether all members of the court and all ofcials could claim this
38 Vecindad: Local Communities

exception and whether it could cover tax farmers or professionals working as

lawyers in royal courts. Again, the willingness to apply a strict or exible
interpretation depended on the place, time, and candidates. On occasion, a
distinction was made between those who served the king for their own conve-
nience and utility and those who were motivated by the obligation towards
his royal person. According to this distinction, only the members of the
second group were truly forced to abandon their communities, and only they
could enjoy the presumption that allowed them to continue to be citizens of
communities where they no longer lived. But this distinction was sufciently
broad to allow for different interpretations. In practice, most Spanish mag-
nates residing in the court were able to enjoy the protection of this exception
and maintain citizenship in their original communities where they owned a
family estate. This enabled them to enjoy the rights of citizens, particularly the
highly valued usage of communal pasture. Some communities, such as Seville,
gladly embraced the residence exception in these cases, as members of its
council considered the citizenship of magnates a privilege and a cause for local
pride. Others, for example Buitrago, whose case was mentioned above, re-
sisted such practices and demanded that jurists who were members of the
court must reside in the municipality or lose their citizenship.
The application of a particular understanding to people belonging to certain
groups was also evident in the case of surgeons, pharmacists, shepherds, and
clerics who resided in the community because they were hired to perform
certain tasks. Because their residence was an involuntary byproduct of their
employment, communities argued that in their case residence alone was insuf-
cient to prove their intentions. This residence was linked to temporary
motives which were changeable and accidental . . . under no concept can these
motives be considered legitimate so that through them it could be understood
that they acquired right to citizenship . . . because being that the main pre-
requisite [for citizenship] is the wish to remain, it is notorious that the mere
causality excludes it, and on the contrary, one assumes it does not exist, nor
continues to exist in someone who had had no other destiny that service which
indifferently is searched for and obtained where it is found and with the same
ease and indifference it is abandoned. Added to these considerations was
the fact that many such employments granted tax exemptions to their prac-
titioners. Since tax payment was a conventional means of enacting citizen-
ship, it was unclear whether under these circumstances receiving a tax exemp-
tion proved that the person did not want to establish permanent ties with
the community.
In spite of the individual features of these debates and their dependence on
the place, time, and parties, several common traits emerge. For example, most
Vecindad: Local Communities 39

communities insisted that maintaining property in the community or even a

house with servants or other representatives was insufcient because it did not
indicate the wishes of the owner or his personal loyalty to the community.
Another common theme was the length of residence. In most cases, commu-
nities argued that meaningful residence had to be continuous, with no
substantial absence, and during the larger part of the year. Temporary
leaves, such as visits to relatives and to properties located outside the commu-
nity, were allowed. Citizens could also be temporarily employed in another
community if warranted by economic and personal circumstances. Passing
needs, such as the wish to acquire a university degree or engaging in litigation
away from the community, could also justify an absence as long as return was
guaranteed upon completion of the task.
Similar conclusions linking external behavior to internal intentions were
reached with regard to possession of property, exchanging marriage vows
with a local woman, and payment of taxes. All of these factors, which were
often enumerated in local laws and which were traditionally interpreted by
historians as requirements for citizenship, were not prerequisites. Instead, they
were instruments that allowed communities to inquire into the intentions of
newcomers. House owning and tax payment, petitioners said, manifested the
intention of wanting to come, reside, and settle a domicile, habitation, and
residence in the place, and this intention was sufcient to acquire citizenship
even in the absence of other indicators. Indeed, searching for factors such as
residence, marriage, property holding, and tax payment, local councils af-
rmed that these factors were not decisive for citizenship acquisition. They
operated only as indicators of the intention to remain in the community and of
the decision to become a citizen.
Thus, local communities had to look beyond facts and interpret them. Al-
though many communities never experienced the kind of conict that required
close examination, others used their interpretive powers to accept and reject
people. It was in these cases of conict, or potential conict, that communities
debated the type of residence, the length of marriage, or the amount of prop-
erty that would be sufcient to prove intentions. Sufciency depended on the
candidate, the circumstances of the case, the community, and the time and
place. Because of these considerations, individuals lacking the prerequisites
mentioned in laws were accepted as citizens because they were considered to
have given sufcient proof of their intention. And in some cases, other individ-
uals who did comply with the prerequisites were considered nevertheless un-
deserving of citizenship.
The cases of Melchor Pardo and Runo Vivanco tied many of these questions
together. Melchor Pardo arrived to Villarramiel de Campos (jurisdiction of
40 Vecindad: Local Communities

Palencia) in 1761 when he was hired to serve as the local pharmacist (boti-
cario). Excluded from land partition by virtue of his foreignness, in 1791 he
requested formal recognition that he was a citizen. According to his version, he
was a citizen because he had acted as a citizen. He had resided in the community
with his family for more than thirty years and had the intention to remain
permanently, which is why he joined several local confraternities. The laws
required neither formal declaration nor special reception, and his behavior was
sufcient to transform him into a citizen. The authorities of Villarramiel dis-
agreed. They argued that he resided in the community as a professional by
virtue of a contract and that, since his immigration was not voluntary, it could
not transform him into a citizen. Rather than a citizen, he was a simple resident.
This was why the community was willing to pay for his relocation, and why it
allowed him to enjoy a tax exemption. Since the day he arrived, Melchor had
done nothing to change this situation, and there was no reason to consider him
differently. Local customs instructed that newcomers request their formal ad-
mission as citizens. Melchor was familiar with this custom, and if he did not
request his citizenship earlier, it was because he did not want to be considered a
citizen. The royal court (chancillera), which rst ruled in favor of the Villar-
ramiel, later changed its verdict and declared Melchor a citizen.
An exact opposite stand was adopted by Santibaez de Zarsaguda (jurisdic-
tion of Burgos) in 1790. Runo Vivanco, a noble (hidalgo) and a pharmacist,
established his residence and commercial headquarters in this settlement in
1787. Three years later, he was notied that he could either become a tax-
paying citizen or leave the jurisdiction. Runo responded by arguing that he
wished to remain in Santibaez and to continue to enjoy the status of both
hidalgo and noncitizen. As a public servant (servidor del pblico), his resi-
dence in the community could never constitute citizenship; as a nobleman, he
had no obligation to pay taxes. His position rejected, he was literally thrown
out of the village together with his family and merchandise. While Runo
claimed that the campaign against him was motivated by personal rivalries
his father was the local tax farmer and his business competed with another
the council of Santibaez argued that such was not the case. Explaining that
their community, a behetra cerrada, possessed special privileges that pro-
hibited noblemen from becoming citizens, and that permanent residence neces-
sarily implied citizenship, it required Runo to either renounce his rights as a
noble and became a citizen or to leave the community. Using arguments similar
to the ones voiced by Sevilles council in the 1770s, the local authorities insisted
that citizenship was not only a privilege but also a duty that could be imposed
on people who lived in the community. They further argued that local practices
prescribed that all people of competent age and situation should become cit-
Vecindad: Local Communities 41

izens; there was no reason to create an exception in Runos case. In fact, except
for Runo, all other residentsboth natives and newcomersobeyed this
rule, and all of them were accepted as citizens. The practice of becoming
citizens was so well rooted in the community that the authorities expected
Runo to conform to it, and they attempted to persuade him extrajudicially. It
was only after their peaceful attempts failed that they removed him physically
from the community. The authorities also explained that although they toler-
ated Runos presence in the jurisdiction for more than three years, they were
no longer willing to do so. At stake were not only compliance with local laws
and customs, but also the need to adhere to justice: people who enjoyed citizen-
ships benets must also be subjected to its corresponding obligations.
The employment of presumptions linking behavior to intentions also ex-
plains why the authorities of Seville could recognize Antonio Joseph de Saave-
dra as a citizen in 1735. This recognition was not illegal, nor did it indicate a
distance between law and its application. It was based on the idea that resi-
dence was a presumption and that, as with all other presumptions, it could be
replaced by other factors that indicated the existence of the intention to be a
citizen. In Antonio Josephs case, intention could be deduced from the close
relationship between the candidates family and the community, as well as
through the payment of taxes.
Yet the use of presumptions also sheds light on the changes introduced in
Sevilles citizenship policies. These changes did not modify the conditions for
citizenship. Instead, they effected only the method by which petitioners inten-
tion to become citizens could be proved. Before 1743, petitioners were re-
quired to prove their intention by submitting an afdavit, attesting that they
had resided in Seville for more than ten years and intended to remain in the city
permanently. After 1743, petitioners had to supply the council with the testi-
mony of the local priest, afrming their residence in Seville, and with rental
receipts. Petitioners were also required to present witnesses who could testify
that in speech and action they behaved like citizens.

The rst legal denition of local citizenship in Spain dates from the early
1800s. Included in legal dictionaries, which were elaborated in order to facili-
tate the work of jurists and administrators, this denition species vecino as:
a person who is domiciled in a place with intention to remain there. Accord-
ing to the law, this intention can be presumed and reputed as proved by the
passing of ten years, although it can also be proved by other facts that manifest
it without the need for the passage of ten years, for example, if one sells his
42 Vecindad: Local Communities

possessions in one place and buys others in the place to where he transfers his
residence, or if one is received as a vecino by the local community, promising
to remain there ten years and paying taxes.
The product of an early nineteenth-century obsession with legal categories,
this denition nevertheless summarizes with precision eighteenth-century
views of Castilian citizenship. First, it stresses that citizenship is based on
individual intention rather than on formal declarations. People are citizens by
virtue of their activities, and they lose their condition as citizens if they fail to
enact the citizen role. Status is thus socially negotiated and socially recognized.
Second, this denition species that intention could be proved by legal pre-
sumptions that link behavior to a state of mind. Such factors as residence,
marriage, and the possession of property, whether detailed in the laws or not,
are meaningful only as reections of an internal decision to become a citizen.
This combination of factors created in Castile citizens by performance, that
is, people whose citizenship depended on their behavior and reputation and
not on formal declarations. Yet, the obligation to demonstrate an internal
decision by performing certain external acts guaranteed that only people who
were able to convince the community of their goodwill good immigrants
would be recognized as citizens. This ability, in turn, depended on the con-
cerned parties, but also on local circumstances and perceptions. Different
requirements were elaborated, demanding people in different periods to pro-
vide a diverse range of proofs. On occasion, citizenship was portrayed as a
privilege. At other times it was presented as an obligation. The story of local
citizenship in Castile thus reveals the existence of common perceptions, often
leading to individual local arrangements. Rather than a fragmentary and
highly localized regime, as portrayed in the legislation and as assumed by most
historians, citizenship was based on doctrine and practices common to all
Castilians. Examining citizenship petitions in a single community and tying
them to local circumstances and immigration policies thus potentially im-
poverishes our understanding of what citizenship meant. It ignores the exis-
tence of citizens who were not formally admitted by local communities, and it
does not explain how and why did people become worthy of rights in the local

Vecindad: From Castile to Spanish America

Soon after their arrival in the New World, and even before the territory
was under their actual control, Spanish conquistadors proclaimed royal juris-
diction over the land and founded new settlements. Standing in open territory
and in the presence of notaries when these were available, expedition com-
manders announced that, under the authority received from the king, viceroy,
or governor, they were founding a settlement. They then set the territorial
jurisdiction of the community, nominating the local authorities and dividing
the land by plots, assigning sites for the main square ( plaza mayor), local
council hall, and jail. Asking those present if they wished to become citizens
(vecinos), commanders announced that they could do so by presenting them-
selves to the authorities in the following days. Through this ceremony, new
communities came into beingwith territory, authorities, urban plan, and
citizensbefore the rst cornerstone was ever laid. Similar procedures were
carried out where Indian enclaves were already in existence. In all of them
for example, Mexico City, Quito, and Cuzcothe community was reinvented
as a Spanish enclave, as though the previous settlement had ceased to exist. By
1571, there were some two hundred Spanish settlements in the American
continents and adjacent islands, and by 1580 the colonial settlement network,
which survived to the nineteenth century, was rmly in place.
At rst, the Spanish American urban experience appeared to be a repetition

44 Vecindad: Spanish America

of the Castilian experience during the Middle Ages. Settlement was perceived
as a process by which communities, rather than individual houses, were
founded, and this process of founding could ignore such facts as the presences
of existing communities that were populated and governed by other tradi-
tions. The role of communities was also similar, as in both cases their founda-
tion conrmed Spanish control over not only territory but also its non-Spanish
inhabitants. As was the case for participants of the reconquest and resettle-
ment of Spain, citizenship (vecindad) could be obtained by the mere fact of
being part of the group that founded the community. All that was required of
the conquistadornow made citizenwas to be present at the foundational
act or to come to the community in subsequent days. Once this rst phase was
completed, most Spanish American communities developed procedures that
enabled newcomers to petition for citizenship. Newcomers had either to allege
their wish to establish permanent ties with the community or to supply proofs
for the existence of such a wish. During this period, most requests were tied to
the desire to obtain land grants, which were available only to citizens. Another
motivation for requesting citizenship was the wish to be employed in munici-
pal ofces.
Petitions for citizenship in Spanish American communities were very com-
mon during the sixteenth century, but they gradually disappeared from munic-
ipal records by the second, third, or fourth decade of the seventeenth century.
Although people continued to refer to themselves as vecinos in notarial acts, in
legal declarations, and in their social interactions, the archives tell us nothing
about how they achieved or maintained this status. As a result, like their
colleagues studying early modern Spain, historians of Spanish America simply
ignored the issue of citizenship. They assumed either that late medieval Cas-
tilian practices continued to operate in the Americas or that, in the Americas,
vecindad was an honorary title and no longer attached to notions of citizen-
ship and belonging.
Nevertheless, until the end of the colonial period, Spanish American citizen-
ship remained a tie among people forming part of the same community. It was
a status that implied both privileges and duties, and people who acted as and
were reputed to be citizens could obtain citizenship. Yet in contrast with
Castile, in Spanish America citizenship was converted fully from a legal cate-
gory into a classication based on social reputation. Instead of maintaining
both formal and implicit citizenship, as was the case in the Old World, in the
New World implicit citizenship prevailed. New forms of exclusion that were
particular to Spanish America also emerged. Most important among them was
the tendency to exclude Indians and persons of mixed blood or African de-
scent from citizenship. Another was the introduction of restrictions on the
Vecindad: Spanish America 45

citizenship of non-Spanish Europeans. This combination of factors tended to

identify Spanishness with citizenship. Under Spanish American conditions,
citizenship became a regime more restricted than the Castilian one in some
ways; more open in others. By excluding non-Spaniards, this regime brought
about greater opportunity for Spaniards, who could gain recognition as cit-
izens in the New World with greater ease than in Castile.
While citizens were being created in the repblica de espaoles, a repblica
de indios was also conjured up in Spanish America. Theoretically, it allowed
the governance of Indian settlements to continue according to indigenous
traditions as long as they were not contradictory to Christian morality. But the
Indian republic, too, was penetrated by Castilian ideas regarding citizenship
and foreignness. Although this inuence was limited, it contributed to a grow-
ing tendency to classify those living in Indian communities according to resi-
dence and the performance of the citizens role rather than by descent. This
tendency pointed to the eventual homogenization of both republics and the
appearance of citizen as a category of person who could choose his place of
residence and become, through action and reputation, a member of a new
The rst indication that Spanish American communities would take a dif-
ferent path was present in the foundational period (mid-sixteenth to early
seventeenth century), which is where my study begins. In order to account for
local differences, my analysis will follow the developments in three very distinct
enclaves: Caracas, Buenos Aires, and Lima. I located some six hundred cases
proceeding from these enclaves. They demonstrate the existence of different
types of tensions leading to different developments, yet as a group these cases
indicate some of the possible consequences of the implementation of Castilian-
type citizenship in Spanish America.

The transformation of citizenship from rst a legal category into a classi-
cation based on social reputation and then as a status not available to non-
Spaniards, is best exemplied by the case of Caracas, which serves here as
the rst model for how Castilian citizenship was modied in the Americas.
Caracas was founded in 1567 as a military garrison. Until the 1580s, its
permanent population was very small, and in 1578, only 14 of the 136 people
who participated in its founding still lived in the community. Protected by a
mountain range yet close to the sea, Caracas soon became a trading post for
agricultural products coming from the hinterland. From the 1580s to the rst
decade of the seventeenth century, and coinciding with the pacication of the
46 Vecindad: Spanish America

territory, wheat, tobacco, and cattle hides provided its inhabitants with prot-
able export. In the following decades, the local economy gradually shifted to
the exportation of cacao to Mexico. This export trade, which sustained the
growth of the city for two hundred years, transformed Caracas into a major
slave labor economy. At the end of the sixteenth century there were some 90
citizens; by 1633 this number had virtually doubled in size.
Formal petitions for citizenship in Caracas were fairly frequent until the
1620s. In accordance with the Castilian tradition, these petitions were pre-
sented to the city council, whose members decided whether the person should,
or should not, be recognized as vecino. Petitions expressed the Castilian belief
in freedom of immigration and included a declaration by the newcomer of his
intention to reside in the jurisdiction and to establish his home there. It was
often clear in municipal records that many petitioners had just arrived in the
city and that their citizenship requests were a rst step towards integration in
the local community. Their promise to tie themselves to Caracas was deemed
sufcient to secure their recognition as citizens and to enable them to enjoy
citizens rights. During this period, most people requesting admission into the
community petitioned to receive land (solar), and in most cases, the authori-
ties, recognizing them as citizens, granted them land, thus enabling them to
establish themselves in the city both legally and materially. Also during this
period, people who left Caracas continued to be considered citizens as long as
they delegated the exercise of their obligations to another person. Caracas was
also willing to admit absentee members: in 1597, Nofre Carrasques, repre-
senting Fernn de Zrate, requested that his client be recognized as a citizen.
His petition was granted even though there were many indications of Fernns
absence and his representative made no promise that Fernn would ever come
to the city. Attempts to force compliance with citizenship obligations, espe-
cially the obligation to reside in the jurisdiction, were also sidetracked, as
afuent members continued to disobey municipal orders and responded in-
stead with the casual payment of penalties. This became a frequent practice
beginning in the 1610s; by the 1650s, the council exempted certain people
from citizenship dutiesresidence includedbecause they were willing to
routinely pay the authorities certain sums.
At this early stage of its history, it was clear that Caracas gave less weight to
actual residence and integration into the community than did its Castilian
counterparts. Also noteworthy was the lack of a clear denition of what was
municipal, what was provincial, and what was Spanish. People residing in the
province could claim that they were integrated into the local community, and
services to the crown were also considered to constitute ties between the indi-
vidual and the city. Perhaps because the jurisdiction of Caracas stretched for
dozens of miles with no other Spanish settlement nearby, and because the city
Vecindad: Spanish America 47

represented all that was Spanish, as opposed to what was Indian or simply
foreign, the distinction between what was local, provincial, and Spanish was
weak from the start.
The demise of formal citizenship procedures in Caracas began at the end of
the sixteenth century. By that time, people requesting the allocation of dif-
ferent resources described their attachment to the community in qualitative
terms rather than by simply asserting that they were citizens. For example,
Toms de Aponte, who requested a land grant in 1597, explained that he had
come to the city with his wife, sons, and family, and that he intended to live
and to remain in the jurisdiction. Francisco Carbajar declared that he had
been living in Caracas for more than seventeen years, that he had occupied a
house with his wife and children, and that he had always complied with all
citizenship obligations. Although some people continued to request formal
admission to the community by petitioning for citizenship, and others men-
tioned their citizenship when petitioning for rights, both practices were dimin-
ishing. By the 1640s, the traditional association between citizenship and land
grants was also fading away. During the second half of the century, people
petitioning for land no longer mentioned their citizenship, and those petition-
ing for citizenship no longer necessarily requested land. At this time, land
grants had ended, and a new regime allocated land by virtue of monetary
payments. As access to land was increasingly independent of citizenship, the
recording of citizenship petitions virtually ceased.
By the middle of the seventeenth century, formal citizenship criteria were
thus giving way to implicit categorizations. Although individuals continued to
argue that they were citizens and thus worthy of rights, they no longer needed
to obtain a formal declaration of citizenship. Citizenship was now implicitly
recognized when rights were allocated. Instead of maintaining a regime in
which citizenship was formally acknowledged by the local authorities, the
ability to use rights usually reserved to citizens now rested on personal reputa-
tion and on the idea that people who acted as citizens were in fact citizens.
Reputation determined whether the person was indeed integrated in the com-
munity and whether the other members considered him worthy of the rights of
a citizen. In 1650, for example, Francisco Lpez stated that it was well
reputed and established (es notorio y consta) that he had been a citizen of
Caracas for more than thirty years. In 1652, Juan Rodrguez argued that his
citizenship could not be doubted, since both in the city and its province he
must be taken as such (debe ser habido por tal ) because of his many services
to the crown.
Despite its novelty, citizenship by reputation had Castilian roots. As men-
tioned in chapter 2, Castilian citizenship could be acquired without the inter-
vention of the authorities. It came into being once a newcomer behaved as a
48 Vecindad: Spanish America

citizen and this behavior was interpreted and validated by the other members of
the community or by communal organs. Yet while Castilian communities
fought against these practices and, in the name of good government attempted
to constitute a monopoly over the classication of people as citizens and non-
citizens, the authorities of Caracas did nothing of the sort. I could not nd even
one attempt to support the continuation of formal procedures for citizenship
and to ensure municipal control over the classication of people as citizens.
The disappearance of formal citizenship in Caracas in the 1620s and 1630s
could be explained by local developments, such as the gradual disassociation
between land grants and citizenship and the passage from free allocation of
land to a monetary payment. Perhaps this disappearance was tied to Caracass
coming of age. In the early 1600s Caracas was already a self-sustaining city,
with a stable population, a fairly ourishing economy, and stable institutions.
Under these circumstances, it no longer required an aggressive immigration
policy, and as an established community, it could close ranks by linking cit-
izenship (and rights) to reputation rather than to abstract legal categories.
The shift from a formally recognized citizenship to a socially reputed one
allowed for the introduction of new factors of exclusion, most important
among them the ineligibility of Indians and people of mixed blood (mestizos
and mulattos) to obtain citizenship. Castilian citizenship practices found that
origin and genealogy were irrelevant to citizenship acquisition, and they
lacked mechanism for examining the candidates ethnicity. In theory, there-
fore, Indians, mestizos, and mulattos should have been eligible for citizenship
in Spanish American communities despite the aspiration to constitute two
separate republics, one Spanish and the other Indian. Ofcially, the
repblica de indios was established to protect Indians from Spanish inuences
as long as they needed such a protection, and it was mainly embodied in the
prohibition of Spaniards in Indian communities. This establishment did not
explicitly prohibit the integration of Indians into Spanish communities, and,
indeed, soon after its installation, Indians began immigrating to Spanish settle-
ments, where they established a permanent residence. This fact was evident
in early Caracas, when Indians and mestizos were at times granted citizenship
and admitted into the purportedly Spanish community. Nevertheless, fol-
lowing the transformation of citizenship from a formal category to a socially
reputed status, the presence of Indians, mestizos, and mulattos was virtually
eliminated. It was also during this period that Indians, mestizos, and mulattos
were treated as miserable and in need of help, rather than as integrated
members of the community. They now received land not because they were
citizens but because of their poverty, their weakness, and in the case of Indians,
because of recent royal decrees favoring the native population.
Vecindad: Spanish America 49

Buenos Aires

A second example of how Castilian practices were modied in the New

World can be found in Buenos Aires. Initially a military outpost at the mouth
of the River Plate, Buenos Aires had become a bustling port city by the early
seventeenth century. Whereas the economy of Caracas was based on agricul-
tural products, in Buenos Aires the main export was mainly metals from
Potos in exchange for slaves and other European products, most of which
reached the city through illegal contraband networks. Buenos Aires initial
years were just as humble. Founded in 1580 by 60 citizens, it was abandoned
by many of them in subsequent years, and its population did not stabilize until
the beginning of the seventeenth century. During the rst half of that century,
the city had some three hundred citizens as well as a huge military regiment.
This military presence was justied not only by the need to protect the river,
but also by the closeness of Brazil. Because of its location, Buenos Aires be-
came an important enclave against Portuguese expansion, yet it also our-
ished as a point where Portuguese and Spanish trade networks converged. One
important result of this collaboration and competition was the presence of
many Portuguese merchants in the city. This presence internally divided
Buenos Aires, with most commerce in the hands of the Portuguese and most
agriculture in the hands of Spaniards. The uneasy relationship between the
two communities led to several campaigns against the presence of the Por-
tuguese in the city. Early in its history, Buenos Aires faced a growing threat to
its control of the countryside as a consequence of the expansion across the
Andes of the Arauncanian people of southern Chile.
According to municipal records, in the late sixteenth and early seventeenth
century, Buenos Aires dened itself as a frontier settlement simultaneously
antagonistic to and cooperating with the Portuguese and the Indians. Because
war was a permanent preoccupation, those wishing to become citizens of
Buenos Aires were required to have a horse and arms, and to guarantee that
when they were absent another person would fulll their military obliga-
tions. The menace of a foreign presence, and the struggle against the Por-
tuguese both inside and outside Buenos Aires, produced an acute conscious-
ness of the Spanish character of the city. This awareness was expressed in two
different ways. On one hand, the distinction between what was local and what
was Spanish was unclear. For example, it was generally argued that services
to the crown were also services to the local community. Those engaged in
expanding Spanish control, in discovering gold mines, and in paying money to
the royal treasury could claim that these activities qualied them as citizens by
demonstrating their attachment to the local community. On the other hand,
50 Vecindad: Spanish America

and this was even more surprising, the authorities of Buenos Aires insisted that
under normal circumstances only natives of the kingdoms of Spain could be
accepted as citizens. This demand was a clear departure from the Castilian
precedent; Castilian communities easily and frequently admitted foreigners as
citizens (chapter 2). In Buenos Aires, on the contrary, only exceptional for-
eigners who were very useful to the community and highly immersed in its
society could be granted citizenship. Some leniency was demonstrated to-
wards Portuguese residents during the union of the crowns of Portugal and
Castile (15801640), yet this leniency evaporated in the following years.
People requesting citizenship in Buenos Aires had to prove that they were
natives of the kingdoms of Spain, and the inclusion of candidates birthplace
in citizenship petitions became the usual practice in the city by 1618. When
the actual place of birth was unknown, the petition at least formally stated
that the persons arrival to the Americas was legal, and that, as a result, he was
necessarily a native of the kingdoms of Spain.
In contrast to the situation in Caracas, land distribution was seldom men-
tioned in Buenos Aires, and it was only in the 1610s that newcomers duties
were formally extended from having arms to also possessing a house. During
this period both requirements were integrated into a formal oath that all
candidates for citizenship had to take. Nevertheless, as late as 1619 and
1620, Buenos Aires still admitted absentee citizens. By the late 1620s, the
number of citizenship petitions was dropping, and in the next few decades,
citizenship petitions practically disappeared from municipal records.
In spite of differences in the particular development of these two cities and in
their understanding of citizenship, formal petitions for citizenship in Buenos
Aires disappeared from the records around the same time they declined in
Caracas. Once again, local circumstances may explain this development. Like
Caracas, Buenos Aires came of age in the beginning of the seventeenth century
as its population stabilized and it began to ourish economically as a port. Yet
contrary to Caracas, in the case of Buenos Aires we lack indications on how the
growing dissociation between citizenship and rights brought about the demise
of formal citizenship. We also lack a clear vision of what the results of this
demise were.

Whereas certain similarities existed between Caracas and Buenos Aires,
developments in Lima, my third model for how Castilian practices changed in
the New World, were very different. Established in 1535 in a fertile valley near
the sea and populated by many Indians, Lima, until the late 1540s, suffered
Vecindad: Spanish America 51

the consequences of Spanish conquistadors ghting for both political con-

trol and material resources. The coming of peacewith the government of
viceroy Conde de Nieve (1556)and of important administrative reforms
especially with the government of viceroy Toledo (1569)marked Limas true
beginning. The power of conquistadors and encomenderos diminished, and
the city was transformed into the capital of an enormous territory that covered
practically the entire South American continent. In 1572, with the suppression
of the last major Indian revolt, Limas future was secured. Its economy, which
initially ourished thanks to Indian and slave labor, became tied to its role as a
capital city. Lima housed a vice-regal court and attracted many professionals,
students, litigants, and candidates for jobs who immigrated on a temporary or
permanent basis. Lima also ourished as one of the few enclaves legally per-
mitted to engage in the transatlantic trade. Through its port (Callao), it ex-
ported metals mostly coming from Potos in exchange for European goods that
were then distributed for prot throughout the continent.
Early citizenship practices in Lima were very similar to those in Caracas. In
the 1540s and 1550s, most petitions for citizenship included requests for land
(solar), and all of them contained an implicit or explicit promise to settle in the
jurisdiction. There were also cases where citizenship was requested on its
own, although I found none where land was granted without the previous
acquisition of citizenship. Other similarities with Caracas, Buenos Aires, and
even Castile also existed. For example, physical residence maintained its status
as the best proof of citizenship, and in 1570, the authorities expressed their
view that a person who resided in the city where he had his home and where he
acted as a municipal judge could not possibly be a citizen of another commu-
nity. Also like Caracas and Buenos Aires formal citizenship petitions disap-
peared by the early seventeenth century.
Despite these similarities, Limas case was very different. This difference
was tied to the presence of a viceroy and the importance of encomienda.
From the 1560s onward, this combination of factors produced an extraordi-
nary situation: the viceroy rather than the local community determined who
was a citizen of Lima. This could happen because encomenderos were le-
gally obliged to reside next to their Indians and because the viceroy controlled
the grant of encomiendas. It meant that each time the viceroy granted enco-
mienda in the jurisdiction of Lima, he also implicitly ordered that the enco-
mendero would reside in Lima. This order was interpreted as a grant of citi-
zenship. Indeed, although some encomenderos invoked the regular tests for
citizenship, most of them simply reproduced the vice-regal order that allo-
cated them the encomienda and claimed that this order also gave them a
right to be acknowledged as vecinos. In 1596, Juan de la Cueva attested that
52 Vecindad: Spanish America

the viceroy granted him the encomienda previously belonging to Lorenzo de

Figueroa Estupian and that, since Lorenzo was a citizen of Lima, so was he.
In his appearance before the local council, Alonso de Aliaga presented a vice-
regal decree that literally ordered the council to receive him as citizen because
he was an encomendero. The role of the viceroy in dening Limas commu-
nity was just as immediate when he ordered (as he often did) that certain
encomenderos would comply with the residence requirement in Lima even
though their Indians belonged to another jurisdiction. The viceroy could
also decide, usually upon the request of the interested party, that an enco-
mienda originally belonging to the jurisdiction of a neighboring town would
thereafter be considered under the jurisdiction of Lima. This happened, for
example, in 1562, when Alvaro de Torres requested to transfer his Indians
from the jurisdiction of Guanuco to that of Lima. He explained that it was
more logical to submit the Indians to Lima, which was nearer and more acces-
sible to where they lived. This transfer would also enabled the Indians to earn
their living with greater ease. After his Indians were assigned to Lima, Al-
varo became a citizen of that city. The accumulative effect of these practices
was that the viceroy could and often did grant citizenship in Limas commu-
nity. Candidates openly argued as much when they told the local authorities
that the viceroy had already granted them citizenship and that all they now
desired was to obtain a formal conrmation of this fact.
Vice-regal intervention, and the close association between encomienda and
citizenship, created in Lima a new category of citizenship called vecindad de
indios. This citizenship designated people whose status depended on their
encomienda. It distinguished them from other citizens, and thereafter two
different classes of citizens existed in Lima: the vecino-encomendero (also
called the vecino feudatario) and the simple vecino (also called caballero
without Indians, caballero situado, caballero avecindado, caballero no
vecino, and ciudadano). While encomendero citizens were accepted into the
community by virtue of their encomienda and because of vice-regal grants, all
other citizens were still recognized by the local council according to the tradi-
tional tests.

Early Citizenship in Spanish America: Recapitulation

These three models for early Spanish American citizenship demonstrate
that the principal traits of Castilian citizenship were maintained in the New
World (residence, an intent to remain permanently), despite undergoing im-
portant modications. In sixteenth- and early seventeenth-century Caracas,
Vecindad: Spanish America 53

Buenos Aires, and Lima, citizenship could be acquired by petitioning the town
council, and success depended on the establishment of, or the promise to
establish, ties with the community. Newcomers had to express their desire to
become citizens, which could be proved by residence, the establishment of a
house, or compliance with citizens duties. The distinction introduced in Lima
between vecinos-encomenderos and simple vecinos was new, as was the ill-
dened frontier between the local community and the community of the king-
dom, which were often used synonymously. This led in Caracas to the exclu-
sion of Indians, mestizos, and mulattos, and in Buenos Aires to the demand
that citizens be natives of the kingdoms of Spain. The abandonment of formal
procedures for citizenship acquisition and the total dependence on reputation
also marked a change from Castilian practices.
The way Caracas, Buenos Aires, and Lima developed helps explain this
trajectory. Caracas gradually became a slave labor economy, leading to height-
ened ethnic awareness. Because of the presence of many non-Spanish Euro-
peans, especially the Portuguese, Buenos Aires experienced ongoing social
tension. Lima suffered vice-regal intervention in municipal affairs, and many
encomenderos were among its oldest and most important citizens. Yet not-
withstanding these explanations, similar processes were happening elsewhere.
Although we lack precise information, we do know that the division of citizens
into encomenderos and non-encomenderos was not particular to Lima but
was practiced in other Peruvian cities, such as Popayn, Jujuy, Cuzco, and
Arequipa. This division was also mentioned in the main compilation of
Spanish American colonial legislation (Recopilacin de Indias), which re-
produced a 1554 decree stating that both normal citizens and vecinos enco-
menderos could be elected to municipal ofces. Historians have afrmed
that Indians, mestizos, and mulattos could become citizens of Spanish Ameri-
can communities in the sixteenth century, but that this was no longer true in
the late seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. They assumed that throughout
Spanish America, in order to be a citizen, one had to be Spanish. The aban-
donment of formal citizenship procedures in the beginning of the seventeenth
century was also a general trend. By the 1620s, formal citizenship petitions
disappeared from the town records of Mexico City. In seventeenth-century
Popayn (present-day Colombia), citizenship was a highly informal status and
did not depend on the inclusion of a residents name in ofcial registries. It was
constituted socially and granted automatically to people who integrated into
the community. In eighteenth-century Quito and Cuenca (present-day Ec-
uador), citizenship was instituted by public knowledge, which required no
proof. These ndings indicate that the exclusion of non-Spaniards from
54 Vecindad: Spanish America

citizenship, as well as the continuation of formal citizenship procedures in

Castile and their abandonment in Spanish enclaves in America, cannot be
explained only by observing the local circumstances in each community.
The exclusion from citizenship of Indians, mestizos, and mulattos as well as
non-Spanish Europeans was likely tied to, as well as motivated by, a growing
identication between Spanishness and citizenship. This growing identica-
tion led to the rejection of non-Spanish people. Non-Spanish Europeans could
be rejected as citizens because their presence in Spanish America was legally
prohibited (see chapters 4 and 5). Although Castilian citizenship practices
clearly stated that the foreignness of people was irrelevant to their status as
citizens or noncitizens, this statement was made under the assumption that the
presence of foreigners was allowed and even welcomed, as was the case in
Castile. Once their presence was prohibited and considered highly dangerous,
as was the case in Spanish America, it became reasonable to exclude non-
Spanish Europeans from the local community. Because foreigners who resided
in local communities could obtain status as natives, Spanish Americans who
wanted to protect the Spanish monopoly in the Americas had to make sure
that no foreigner was allowed to settle permanently on the continent. It is
therefore not surprising that the exclusion of non-Spanish Europeans, which
probably also existed elsewhere, was most evident in Buenos Aires, where
there were many such foreigners and where their presence motivated repeating
Whereas the rejection of non-Spanish Europeans from citizenship could be
tied to the illegality of their presence in Spanish America, the exclusion of
Indians, mestizos, and mulattos had no clear legal reason. Both the Castilian
citizenship regime and Castilian law prohibited this exclusion, and its practice
was indeed limited as long as Spanish American communities applied formal
categories. When formal categories were abandoned at the beginning of the
seventeenth century, the rejection of Indians and the mixed-blood became
more frequent and more apparent. Seemingly, a regime based on reputation
rather than legal categories was more likely to follow the general sense that,
regardless of legal denitions, those who are not Spanish are external to the
local community. Again, it is not surprising that this exclusion was most evi-
dent in Caracas, which became dependent on slave labor. Yet it probably
existed in other places as well.
If the rejection of non-Spanish Europeans, Indians, the mixed-blood, and
mulattos could be explained by some sort of essentialization that, for different
reasons, tended to equate the local community with the larger Spanish com-
munity, the abandonment of formal procedures, also common to many Span-
ish American settlements, must be reasoned by other factors. One way to
Vecindad: Spanish America 55

discern how this common development came about is to compare the practical
implications of citizenship in Castile and Spanish America, on one hand, and
the frequency of conicts (or potential conicts) regarding citizenship, on the
other. As I indicated in the introduction and in chapter 2, citizenship was an
important issue in Castile because it allowed people to enjoy a wide array of
privileges and obligated them to comply with many duties. Despite this fact,
citizenship was registered and debated in Castile only in cases of conict or
potential conict. In all other cases, it operated silently, and people were classi-
ed and allowed to exercise rights and duties without their status being ex-
plicitly discussed. Was this the case in Spanish America?
There are many indications that by the beginning of the seventeenth century
Spanish American communities no longer maintained a discriminatory regime
that clearly distinguished between the rights of citizens and noncitizens. There
are hundreds of cases where noncitizens in Spanish American communities
enjoyed rights that in Castile would have been reserved for citizens. In many
Spanish American communities communal property was open to both citizens
and noncitizens, and noncitizens could be employed in municipal ofces. In
some jurisdictions, taxation and military duty were imposed equally on both
citizens and noncitizens. Indeed, once land grants ceased, Spanish American
practices no longer substantially discriminated against noncitizens. Emptied
of most of its pragmatic implications, by the mid-seventeenth century, Spanish
American citizenship embodied only the social and cultural recognition that
one was a permanent member of the community. Once this was the case, the
struggle to dene who was a citizen lost much of its importance; it probably
became less frequent, less urgent, less conictual, and thus less often recorded.
The relation between the demand for rights, on one hand, and formal ac-
knowledgement of citizenship, on the other, can be exemplied by reviewing
the few occasions when citizenship did matter in Spanish America. In the late
seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, when obtaining citizenship enabled in-
dividuals to enjoy a particular regime of rights and duties, discussions on
citizenship reappeared. In these situations, citizenship was argued according
to the Castilian tradition that linked behavior to intention: people who acted
as citizens were in fact citizens. The opposite was also true. Those no longer
acting as citizens were considered to have expressed implicitly a desire to
severe ties with the community. Yet, in the late seventeenth and eighteenth
century, two important factors, which were present in early Caracas and
Buenos Aires, became especially apparent. These factors were (1) the growing
identication between domicile and citizenship and (2) the close association
between citizenship and nativeness.
One example for late seventeenth-century and eighteenth-century Spanish
56 Vecindad: Spanish America

American citizenship discussions is the debate provoked by the application of

Spanish American legislation prohibiting certain ofceholders and their chil-
dren from marrying local spouses. This prohibition, which initially excluded
only spouses who were born locally as marriage partners, was extended in the
late seventeenth century to cover all people having domicile in the jurisdiction.
Thereafter, to determine whether unions were to be allowed or prohibited, the
authorities had to examine whether the spouse was native born or had a
domicile in the jurisdiction. In investigating these cases, they solicited the
opinion of interested parties and local witnesses. Although motivated by dif-
ferent considerations, interested parties, witnesses, and eventually the authori-
ties did agree on a few basic elements. First and foremost, when asked about
domicile, they answered about citizenship (vecindad), thus demonstrating
that from their point of view the two terms were interchangeable. The identi-
cation of domicile with vecindad was made explicit, for example, by Juan Pez
de Aller who interpreted the prohibition as including spouses who were cit-
izens (vecino) and had domicile (domiciliado) in the jurisdiction. Second,
they made no suggestion that citizenship was a formal category obtained by
virtue of a formal administrative procedure. On the contrary, according to
them, citizenship was a status dependent on reputation and common knowl-
edge (voz comn). They assumed that all permanent residents of Spanish
origin were citizens, and they expressed their belief that residence had to be
accompanied by the intention to be tied permanently to the community. A
residence that was joined by the hope to return to the community of birth, for
example, was considered temporary and did not constitute citizenship.
Spaniards who were in Spanish America on a temporary basis were therefore
noncitizens; Spaniards, who tied their future to the community, where they
wanted to remain permanently, were citizens (see chapter 7).
The linking of citizenship with domicile and permanence was also sup-
ported in the writing of contemporary Spanish American scholars. In the
seventeenth century, Juan Solrzano Pereira ascertained that the marriage
prohibition should not be applied to natives who no longer had a domicile in
the jurisdiction. He asserted that people had abandoned their domicile if
they left the jurisdiction, taking their families and properties with them and
having the intention to reside and remain permanently in another commu-
nity. He also mentioned that the passing of ten years was a sufcient proof of
an intention to abandon ones community. In short, speaking about domicile,
Solrzano reproduced with delity the Castilian desavecindamiento, the un-
doing of citizenship (chapter 2).
The identication of domicile with citizenship also occurred elsewhere. For
example, in early eighteenth-century Quito, a debate took place: could certain
Vecindad: Spanish America 57

people residing in Otavalo participate in ceremonies taking place in Quito as if

they were citizens of Quito? It was then explained that these people originated
from Quito and never meant to abandon their citizenship in the capital when
they founded Otavalo. Applying the natural law which aided them, as free
vassals of his royal person, these people were eligible to voluntarily . . .
swear domicile in Quito. In this case, domicile was equaled to citizenship
and distinguished from residence. Obtaining it depended on the interested
partys wishes, which were guaranteed by freedom of immigration and by
natural rights. Similar conclusions were also reached in late colonial Buenos
Aires, where the distinction between noncitizens and citizens was interpreted
as identical to the distinction between transients and permanent residents.
This interpretation allowed all permanent residents who complied with obli-
gations to be considered citizens and to acquire the rights and obligations of
The identication between citizenship and domicile was paralleled by a
tendency to identify citizenship with nativeness. This tendency was already
suggested in the colonial legislation that initially prohibited ministers and their
children from marrying persons born in the jurisdiction that they governed
and later prohibited them from marrying citizens. It was also present in the
application processes. Witnesses evaluating the spouse often considered that
individuals who were well integrated in the local community and who were
citizens of it were also by extension natives, or were worthy of treatment as
natives, even when they had been born elsewhere.
The idea that integration implied both nativeness and citizenship and that
one could lead to the other was also reproduced in Quito in the 1740s. Wit-
nesses in the investigation against president Jos Araujo y Ro attested that
Sancho de Segura should be considered a native of Lima. Although they were
aware that he was born in Quito, they explained that he immigrated to Lima at
a young age where he remained for a long time and co-naturalized in that city,
having more relationship and closeness with its citizens (vecinos) than with
those of Quito. Exchanging nativeness with both citizenship and
domicile, the witnesses also requested that certain ofces not be granted to
foreigners but be reserved for natives or individuals domiciled in the jurisdic-
tion. The relation between citizenship and nativeness was also invoked in
late eighteenth-century Buenos Aires. People appointed to local ofces re-
quested exemption because they were citizens of another community. Yet to
prove their citizenship, they mainly referred to their nativeness (see below).
Obtaining rights was one reason to discuss citizenship. Another was the
presence of conicts or the fear of conicts. In 1652, the Caracas city council
refused to recognize Juan Rodrguez Agrn as the new constable (alguacil
58 Vecindad: Spanish America

mayor). Alleging that he was a noncitizen, the municipal authorities, who

had another candidate in mind, insisted that municipal ofces must be re-
served to citizens or natives of the jurisdiction. Just as important was their
complaint that Juan was of low social standing. He was a servant (criado) with
neither independent nancial resources nor a sufciently good reputation (es-
timacin). Invoking his condition as a foreigner, the authorities mostly dis-
qualied Juan on the basis of other factors that, according to them, demon-
strated that he was unworthy of the ofce. They also used against him an
argumentforeignnessthat they had been willing to ignore in other cases
by admitting other noncitizens to ofce.
Conict or fear of conict was also the reason why in the mid-eighteenth
century, the town council of Buenos Aires declared Francisco Prez de Sara-
via and the people who supported him noncitizens. Francisco had just been
elected the local commercial deputy of Limas merchant guild. The town coun-
cil, which spoke for the local merchants, opposed his appointment because it
suspected that he would be subservient to the guild and insufciently loyal to
local interests. According to the council, in spite of the fact that the guilds
ordinances stipulated that both electorate and elected must be citizens, many
foreigners ( forasteros) voted in the elections, and, indeed, the elected ofcial
(Francisco) was himself a noncitizen. Francisco and his supporters rejected
these claims: although they were unmarried and owned no house or real estate
in the jurisdiction, they were nevertheless citizens because citizenship de-
pended on only one factor: the transfer of money and property to the jurisdic-
tion by a person who came to reside in the city with the intention of living
there perpetually. Although their rivals shared this understanding, they
reached the opposite conclusion. According to them, both Francisco and his
supporters were transients rather than citizens because they came to Buenos
Aires only to sell goods without the intention of residing perpetually in the
city: they meant to leave as soon as their business dealings were done. The
viceroy, following the advice of the appellate court (audiencia) of Lima, ruled
in favor of the town council and annulled the elections. Again, the formal
conict involved identifying citizens. Yet beneath this conict was a real strug-
gle to control local ofces and to guarantee that only the right people would
be elected to them.
Holding municipal ofces also motivated conicts regarding citizenship. A
coveted privilege during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, municipal
ofce holding had lost much of its attraction by the eighteenth century. Em-
ployment in nonremunerated ofces carrying heavy responsibility and a great
deal of work no longer interested community members. This was especially
true in regions with no Indians (and thus, no tax collection duties) and in cases
Vecindad: Spanish America 59

where candidates were merchants and needed to look after their business
affairs. Elected to ofce, these people claimed that they were too poor, too
busy, or simply unworthy of the honor bestowed on them. This wish to avoid
ofce holding became an epidemic in late eighteenth-century Buenos Aires.
Alleging different circumstances and needs, on occasion, those elected to ofce
also argued that they were noncitizens and that, as a result, they could not be
obliged to comply with citizenship duties. Jacinto de la Fuente argued that he
was a citizen of Arrecife and not Pergamino, which was where he was elected
to ofce. His citizenship in Arrecife was based on the fact that he was a
native of the jurisdiction, where he had established his domicile together with
his wife and children. The authorities disagreed. Jacinto resided in Pergamino
the greater part of the year, and his business operation was located in that
community. As a result, he should be reputed and held (reputado y tenido)
as a citizen of Pergamino. Other people were more successful in making the
same claims. Joseph Fortunato Ruz de Arellano requested that his nomina-
tion in Buenos Aires as a local judge (alcalde ordinario) be revoked because he
was, in fact, a citizen of Asuncin (Paraguay). His citizenship in Asuncin,
he said, was tied to the fact that he was a native of that jurisdiction: there he
had property and had recently married an Asuncin native by way of proxy.
He also served as a judge in Asuncin in 1760 and had always wished to return
to that city. According to his claims, his case was radically different from those
other petitioners who refused ofce but had resided in Buenos Aires continu-
ously for many years. Unlike him, these people were citizens, and they could
be forced into ofce. The authorities agreed with him.

Citizenship in the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries:

There is sufcient ground to believe that the abandonment of formal
procedures for citizenship declaration in Spanish American enclaves was tied
to the absence of a discriminatory regime that distinguished between the rights
of citizens and noncitizens. This absence made the meaning of citizenship less
crucial, and it generated fewer conicts regarding the correct classication of
each individual. But debates concerning citizenship did reappear when dis-
crimination was reintroduced and when conicts were possible or ongoing.
Yet we still do not know why Spanish American communities stopped dis-
criminating against noncitizens while Castilian communities continued to do
so. Although the archives contain no answer to this question, one possible
explanation is that once citizenship could be identied with such diverse no-
tions as domicile, nativeness, and Spanishness, and once foreigners, Indians,
60 Vecindad: Spanish America

and the mixed-blood were rejected, the need to discriminate against people
who were Spanish disappeared. Indeed, once citizenship was identied with
Spanishness, all Spaniards could be admitted as citizens, or, at least they could
enjoy a common regime of rights and privileges. At the same time, discrimina-
tion was maintained, even enforced, with regards to true outsiders: the
Indians, mestizos, mulattos, and, to a certain degree, non-Spanish Europeans.
One could say that in their joint opposition to foreign and seemingly hostile
elements, in Spanish America all Spaniards were citizens of a single commu-
nity and all non-Spaniards were classied as aliens. As a result, in this hectic
and constantly changing world, there was an overpowering sense of famil-
iarity. People acted as if they knew who the others were, and individuals
moved across dozens, hundreds, and thousands of miles behaving as if they
were in a familiar territory.
In addition to the growing identication between Spanishness and citizen-
ship, the abandonment of a discriminatory regime could also be explained by
the structural and legal differences between Castile and Spanish America. In
Castile, citizenship was dened at the same time in which the kingdom itself
was created. The coincidence guaranteed a regime that was initially very lo-
calized and that admitted great differences between one community and the
other. Processes of homogenization within the kingdom gradually closed the
distance between the practices of different communities, yet until the end of
the Old Regime, some differences, especially with regard to formal require-
ments and procedures, remained in place. It was also clearly the case that in
Castile municipal entities were contemporaneous to the kingdom. Their resi-
dents forged an identity of their own at the same time in which they were
gradually inserted into the kingdom.
The contrary was true with regard to Spanish America. The settlement of
the New World happened after the kingdom of Castile had consolidated.
While the kingdom was a fact, the local community was a project. In the
Americas, new communities were formed, and they initially had no local his-
torical traditions, nor a clear local identity, nor a law of their own. Indeed,
Spanish American enactmentswhether local or common to the entire terri-
torylacked instructions concerning citizenship. This lack could be supple-
mented because Spanish American law determined that Castilian law would
be adopted in cases of legal lacuna. There was, however, no single or simple set
of Castilian laws that Spanish Americans could adopt. As noted earlier and in
chapter 2, a common Castilian citizenship regime existed, but it depended on
doctrine and practices. Castilian local legislation, on the contrary, included
different rules with regard to the acquisition of formal citizenship. At certain
places and times, the king instructed Spanish American communities to adopt
Vecindad: Spanish America 61

a specic Castilian community, for example, Seville, as a model. Yet other

models also existed and were used in Spanish America. Confusion over the
variety of local Castilian traditions that could potentially guide Spanish Amer-
icans was matched by personal convictions about the meaning of citizenship in
Castile. Spaniards arriving in Spanish America originated in different commu-
nities, both Castilian and Aragonese. They each brought their own under-
standing of citizenship, which they wished to continue practicing as they had
in Spain. This combination of factors encouraged the creation in Spanish
America of a citizenship regime that was weak on formalities and laws but
strong on convictions. This regime abandoned the peculiarities typical to Cas-
tilian local communities and adopted instead what was common to the entire
kingdom (and probably Spain): the idea that beyond formalities people could
become citizens by enacting the role of citizen.

The Repblica de Indios

There are many indications that by the mid-seventeenth century and
especially during the eighteenth century, Castilian notions of citizenship were
also being introduced to the Indian republic. The literature on migrant ( for-
astero) Indians in Spanish America hints at such developments. Indians were
originally classied as members of Indian communities by virtue of birth and
descent. This classication was used to determine duties, especially paying
taxes (tributo) and contributing with labor (repartimiento). Although mi-
gration among communities within and outside the Indian republic was per-
mitted, only under exceptional circumstances were Indian migrants allowed to
abandon their rights and duties in their community of birth and acquire new
ones in a community of their choosing.
By the seventeenth century, attitudes towards community afliation gradu-
ally changed. Willingness developed to allow Indians to change the commu-
nity to which they were legally bound. Like the Spanish, Indians came to be
associated with the communities where they paid taxes, used communal land,
or worked in certain ofces. It was generally agreed that they acquired a set of
rights and obligations by virtue of their behavior. Once these migrants had
established themselves in the new community, they were no longer considered
members of their original community. As immigration intensied, the original
distinction between Indians who were members of the community (origina-
rios) and Indians who were not ( forasteros), was replaced by another, which
distinguished between temporary and permanent migrants. Temporary mi-
grants were the true forasteros. They were external to the community and
had no right to use communal land and no duty to pay taxes. The transient
62 Vecindad: Spanish America

nature of their association with the community led to their stigmatization

as people with no xed residence; they were often viewed as fugitives or va-
grants. Permanent migrants included individuals who, despite their origin as
forasteros, were considered members of the community. They could use the
communal land and were obliged to pay taxes. Indeed, both the Spanish and
the Indian authorities protested when permanent forasteros did not act as
community members. They insisted, for example, that these forasteros were
naturalized in the community, and that by virtue of their residence, marriage
to local spouses, or ownership of property, they must be treated as natives.
Although the term vecindad was mentioned in none of these cases, the
similarities between these developments and Castilian citizenship practices are
nevertheless striking. In fact, it seems that over time in their attempt to control
migration among Indians, both the Spanish and Indian authorities imple-
mented notions more related to the Castilian tradition of citizenship than to
birth. Eventually, Indian local communities were viewed as associations based
on the compliance with duties, which in turn generated the right to enjoy
benets. Both Indian and Spanish authorities insisted that permanence created
ties between newcomers and the community, ties that became as important
and as meaningful as birth and descent. Thereafter, the distinction between
transitory and permanent members of the community, a distinction that was
crucial to Castilian understandings of communal structures and belonging,
was also introduced into the Indian world.

The relation between Castilian and Spanish American practices was
highly complex. A supercial study would indicate that Spanish American
citizenship differed dramatically from the Castilian example. In early modern
Castile, citizenship was a category both formal and explicit and with wide-
reaching social, economic, honorary, cultural, and institutional implications.
In Spanish America, citizenship became a status based on reputation, which
implied no clear discriminatory regime and that had mostly a socialrather
than legalsignicance. A thorough investigation nevertheless demonstrates
that the distance between the Castilian and the Spanish American experience
was in some respects more apparent than real and in others, more real than ap-
parent. On one hand, despite the disappearance of formal procedures, Spanish
American citizenship still included the basic Castilian premise that people
could become citizens by virtue of deciding to do so, and that this decision
could best be proved by behavior as citizen, mainly through residence. Spanish
American citizenship thus remained a measure of the persons integration in
Vecindad: Spanish America 63

the community. This integration depended on the wishes of each candidate, as

well as on the willingness of the other members to admit him. The abandon-
ment of formal procedures in itself was not foreign to the Castilian tradition.
On the contrary, it gave full credit to the idea, already present in Castile, that
municipal intervention was not truly necessary to constitute citizenship, and
that citizenship was automatically attained once the newcomer began acting
as a citizen. In some odd way, Spanish American practices revealed the essence
of the Castilian view more clearly than practices in Castile themselves: instead
of municipal authorities validating through formal tests the power of people
to convert themselves by virtue of their decision, Spanish American practices
simply recognized the power of citizenship by reputation. On the other hand,
conserving a regime that in many ways was similar to its Castilian precedent,
Spanish American practices introduced innovations of great importance.
These were the gradual identication between citizenship and domicile, and
between citizenship, nativeness, and Spanishness. This identication permit-
ted the essentialization or even the nationalization of citizenship. A great
variety of local practices were unied in a common regime, and this regime
rejected all non-Spanish elements.

Naturaleza: The Community of the Kingdom

Spain emerged from the Middle Ages as a highly complex and frag-
mented political entity. It included two crowns (Castile and Aragon); various
kingdoms, provinces, and principates; and thousands of local communities.
The kingdoms included in the crown of Aragon, whose unitsAragon, Cata-
lonia, Valencia, and Majorcaeach maintained their autonomous legal and
political structures, had their own governing and representative institutions
and their own laws. Some of the kingdoms and principates included in the
crown of Castile, for example, Len, Asturias, and Galicia, were integrated
into a single system and were subjected to the same institutions and laws.
Others, such as Navarre and the Basque provinces, conserved many of their
separate structures.
People living in the different Spanish kingdoms were legally classied in
different ways. They belonged to separate groups, each enjoying a particular
regime of rights and duties as dened by the legal system of their kingdom or
crown. Most important among these rights was the monopoly on ofce hold-
ing (reserva de ocio), which restricted the use of public ofce and ecclesi-
astical beneces to natives (naturales) of the jurisdiction. According to this
monopoly, only natives of Castile could hold ofces in Castile, only natives of
Catalonia could hold ofces in Catalonia, and so on. Since implementing
this monopoly required that foreigners (extranjeros) be distinguished from

Naturaleza: Community of the Kingdom 65

natives, a theory of nativeness (naturaleza) was developed in each of the

Iberian kingdoms.
A common Spanish nativeness, which included all natives of all Spanish
kingdoms, originated in Spanish America sometime at the end of the sixteenth
century and was the result of a new monopoly that allowed only natives of
the kingdoms of Spain (naturales de los reinos de Espaa) to emigrate to and
to trade in the New World. This monopoly forced the authorities on both
sides of the Atlantic to determine whether people who wanted to immigrate
and to trade were indeed natives of Spain. Because Spanish America was
formally a Castilian territory, the answer to this question depended on Cas-
tilian legal arrangements.
Although a community of natives of the kingdoms of Spain was dened
with regard to the colonial enterprise by the late sixteenth century, in the
Iberian peninsula several communities of natives continued to coexist. The
construction of a common community of Spanish natives did not come about
until the early eighteenth century (170616) with the subjection of the Ara-
gonese kingdoms to Castilian public law. This subjection was justied by
Aragonese support for the vanquished Habsburg pretender during the Spanish
War of Succession. Among the legal reforms that followed this war, several
explicitly stated that natives of the Aragonese kingdoms would be equally
eligible to ofces and beneces all over Spain and that, by the same token,
ofces in the crown of Aragon would be open to Castilians. Although Navarre
and the Basque provinces preserved their individual legal regimes, because of
special privileges granted to them in the sixteenth century, their natives were
considered Castilians and, like all other Castilians, they could now hold ofces
anywhere in Spain.
The story about how discussions of the right to immigrate and to trade in
the New World, and to hold public ofces and ecclesiastical beneces in both
Spain and Spanish America, dened the Spanish community, is largely untold.
Spanish scholarship on nationalism and protonationalism centers on state
structures and administrative developments and assumes that the construction
of the Spanish community was a natural outcome of both. Because state
and nation were one of the same thing, subjects and nationals were syn-
onymous. The king decided who was Spanish by accepting certain people as
his vassals and by granting letters of naturalization to others. Although in
each particular Spanish kingdom nativeness expressed an early modern sen-
timent of nation, in Spain as a whole no such sentiment existed either be-
cause there was no community of Spanish natives or because this community,
which included both local and foreign vassals, failed to generate distinctions
between Spaniards and non-Spaniards.
66 Naturaleza: Community of the Kingdom

Despite these misleading indications, a community of Spanish natives did

exist from the late sixteenth century, and its denition did not depend on
the king alone. This community was instituted by reference to the ability to
exercise certain rights and was dened as a result of a struggle to distin-
guish insiders (worthy of rights) from outsiders. This struggle depended on the
efforts of individuals to obtain rights and the response of othersindividuals,
corporations, or authoritieswho wished to assist or prevent them from
achieving their goal. It was a struggle motivated by the wish to control the
allocation of such resources as ofces and commercial privileges. Yet, discus-
sions about nativeness and foreignness also involved constitutional debates
and demonstrated how local communities, merchants, and individuals re-
sponded to pressures from above, and how they clashed with the king over the
right to dene the community. On occasion, discussions about nativeness also
expressed a genuine need to identify the moment and mechanism by which
foreigners were transformed into natives or conrmed as outsiders.
In early modern Spain nativeness and foreignness were never self-evident
criteria, and they never obeyed clear legal prescriptions. Rather than being
simply a matter of birthas the term native might indicate and as most
historians have assumedin Spain and Spanish America nativeness became a
social and legal construct. This construct was subjected to negotiations and
pacts, and it suffered revisions as it was applied and interpreted by different
people acting under different circumstances and for different ends. First de-
ned in thirteenth-century Castile, over time and especially in the seventeenth
and eighteenth centuries, Castilian and then Spanish nativeness became asso-
ciated with local citizenship. People were natives, or became natives, once they
established, with the intent to remain permanently, residence in a community
located on Spanish territory, or once they gave other proofs of their wish to tie
themselves to such a community. By the same token, individuals who left the
community lost their status as natives independent of their place of birth or
their descent. Indeed, like citizenship, nativeness operated on the margins of
formal declarations: it existed as an implicit category. People obtained it, or
lost it, because of the way they behaved rather than because of birth or royal
recognition. Yet, while certain people were allowed to act as natives without
their status being questioned, others encountered opposition within the com-
munity and had their rights contested. This opposition could force individ-
uals who gave no indications of foreignnessfor example, those born in
Spain or Spanish America to Spanish parents and who had always lived in the
communityto defend their status as natives.
These tensions within the community were further complicated by the exis-
tence of formal procedures that allowed the king to naturalize foreigners.
Naturaleza: Community of the Kingdom 67

These proceduresroyal naturalization lettersconstituted an authority

parallel to the system of implicit categorizations. Their use provoked constant
confrontations between the king and the kingdom. The king wished to gratify
his clients by naturalizing them, and he insisted that the Spanish community
consisted of vassals directly tied to him. It was up to him as a sovereign
monarch to decide who would be accepted as vassal, and acceptance as vassal
meant immediate naturalization. The representatives of the kingdom, on the
contrary, believed that people were naturalized through establishing ties with
the community, by acting in a way that made them members.
Although nativeness was mentioned in thirteenth-century legal texts, dis-
cussions about the meaning of Castilian nativeness began only in fourteenth-
and fteenth-century Castile. These discussions were tied to determining eligi-
bility for public ofce and ecclesiastical beneces. By the late sixteenth and
seventeenth centuries, these discussions were applied to the colonies and were
used in both Spain and Spanish America to dene a community of Spanish
natives for the purpose of immigration and trade in the New World. By the
early eighteenth century and with the application of Castilian law in Aragon,
the same discussions helped determine the extension of a Spanish community
also in Spain.
As happened in the local sphere, these issues were not apparent in the
legislation. Although all peninsular kingdoms had laws explaining nativeness
in reference to a particular right, the requirements enumerated by these laws
seem arbitrary and they changed from one case to the other. The importance
of legal requirements was not clear; they were often ignored by individuals and
authorities, whom historians have accused of disregarding the law and intro-
ducing corrupt practices. In spite of its frequent use in administrative, judi-
cial, and mercantile records, the term natives of the kingdoms of Spain was
never legally dened. Following the Recopilacin de Indias that claried that
among those native of Spain were natives of Castile, Aragon, Catalonia, Val-
encia, Majorca, Minorca, Navarre, and the three Basque provinces, it was
generally assumed by historians that Spanish nativeness had no denition of
its own and that to be Spanish one had to be native of Castile, Aragon, or
Catalonia, and so forth.
Yet, as in the case of local communities, these conclusions change once we
examine individual cases where the application of the category native of
Spain was required either because individuals requested to be recognized as
such, or because others wished to bar them from privileges. These cases dem-
onstrate the construction of Spanishness as a category independent of mem-
bership in an individual Spanish kingdom. I examined some 1,700 such cases,
mainly concerned with the ability to immigrate and to trade in the New World
68 Naturaleza: Community of the Kingdom

and the right to hold ofces and beneces in Castile and other parts of Spain.
For the sake of convenience, I have separated developments in Castile and
Spain from developments in Spanish America. Despite this material separa-
tion, the two debates, which are explored below and in chapter 5, should be
viewed as complementary.

The Monopoly on Ofce Holding (the Reserva de Ocio)

The construction of a community of Spanish natives began in thirteen-
century Castile. The Siete Partidas dened nativeness (naturaleza) as: one of
the greatest obligations people can have with one another. If nature ties them
by lineage, nativeness converts them into a single unit through the long prac-
tice of loyal love. Responsible for the creation of human associations, native-
ness included the obligation which men are under to others to love and
cherish them for some just reason. It consisted of a natural inclination: The
following distinction exists between it [nativeness] and nature, namely, nature
is a force which causes everything to remain in the condition directed by the
bond of God; nativeness is something which resembles nature and assists
everything derived from it to exist and be preserved. The Siete Partidas
enumerates ten ways to achieve nativeness. The rst and best is nativeness
obtained by birth in the territory to a family that descended from the juris-
diction. Other ways include vassalage, nurture (crianza), knighthood, mar-
riage, inheritance, rescue from captivity, death or dishonor, emancipation,
conversion to Christianity, or ten years residence. Even at this early stage,
nativeness was clearly distinguished from vassalage. Nativeness was a natural
condition, automatically acquired once the circumstances for its constitution
were present. Vassalage, on the contrary, was a contract that came into being
mainly through subjection and service. Each of these conditions implied a
different set of rights and obligations, and each could be achieved and aban-
doned in a different way. I will return to this issue in chapter 6.
Although rooted in medieval times, the practice of identifying people as
natives and distinguishing them from foreigners became important in Castile
only in the following centuries. Two reasons contributed to this growing im-
portance. (1) During the late Middle Ages, and especially after the unication
of the crowns of Castile and Aragon, the Spanish monarchy became a com-
posite monarchy, embracing different territories with different legal regimes.
Under these circumstances, the denition of natives and their distinction from
foreigners, especially foreign vassals of the Spanish king, became essential as
inhabitants of the different kingdoms wished to limit the power that foreign
vassals could acquire through their relationship with the monarch. (2) The
Naturaleza: Community of the Kingdom 69

fteenth and sixteenth centuries constituted a period of bureaucratic expan-

sion. The number and importance of available public ofces and ecclesiastical
beneces grew substantially. This growth was accompanied by the patrimoni-
alization of public ofces and ecclesiastical beneces, which came to be viewed
as the private property of communities, particular families, or specic individ-
uals. Communities, families, and individuals competed for the allocation of
these resources, and they offered the monarch substantial amounts of money
in order to obtain control of their assignment. During this period, public
ofces and ecclesiastical beneces were also perceived as rewards, which the
king could distribution among his allies and loyal servants. They, his allies,
expected to receive these rewards, and he, the king, wished to distribute them.
As a result of both these processes, by the fteenth and sixteenth centuries,
the representatives of the kingdom in parliament (cortes) argued that only
natives should be allowed to exercise ofces and beneces that were very
protable or that included jurisdiction over people and territory. In response
to these petitions, as early as 1377 and repeatedly over the next two centuries,
Castilian monarchs rst promised to revoke all grants of ecclesiastical beneces
to foreigners and then expanded that exclusion to most public ofces, retail
mercantile activities, and all seigniorial jurisdictions. The exclusion of for-
eigners also found expression in local laws and in the ordinances of specic
institutions or ofces, which claried that they must be reserved for natives.
It thus became necessary in Castile to distinguish natives from foreigners.
This distinction had no simple denition in the existing legislation. Instead,
there were several overlapping denitions, each seemingly indicating the im-
portance of different criteria. The rst denition, included in the Siete Partidas
and specifying that birth, vassalage, nurture, knighthood, marriage, inheri-
tance, rescue, emancipation, conversion, or a ten years residence constituted
nativeness, was a main point of reference. Yet in 1565, a second denition
was added, clarifying who was a native of Castile for the sake of receiving
ecclesiastical beneces. According to this second denition, natives were per-
sons born in the kingdoms to a native father, and others who had established
their domicile in the jurisdiction and lived there for ten years. Nativeness could
be extended to sons of natives born abroad if their parents were absent from
the kingdom because of royal service, with royal permission, or if their ab-
sence was temporary. Although this denition, which was included in the
Recopilacin de Castilla, was not meant to change the existing legal situation,
it was clear that the criteria and prerequisites it enumerated were different
from the ones included in the Partidas. Vassalage, conversion, nurture, knight-
hood, marriage, inheritance, rescue, and emancipation disappeared, and in
their place emphasis was placed on birth and descent, on one hand, and a
70 Naturaleza: Community of the Kingdom

prolonged residence, on the other. Other denitions also followed. In order to

obtain their naturalization in Castile, foreigners had to petition the Council of
Castile and demonstrate that they had lived in the kingdom for ten years, had
owned a house, and were married to a native. Marriage and the owning of a
house were thus added to the criteria listed to distinguish foreigners and na-
tives. In 1620, sons of foreigners born in Spain were declared natives of
Spain, apparently for all purposes and especially with reference to the ability
to immigrate and to trade in the New World. At this point, it seems that birth
in the territory is sufcient to obtain nativeness, and descent is no longer an
issue. In 1623, foreigners who resided in Castile for ten years, owned property,
and were married to a Spanish wife for at least six years were equal to natives
in many respects.
This apparent legal discrepancy was echoed in early modern literature. Al-
onso de Acevedo, Hugo de Celso, Juan de Hevia Bolaos, Jos de Veitia Linaje,
Gregorio Lpez de Tovar, Rafael Antunes y Acevedo, and Juan Sala also
pointed to a variety of situations allowing people to acquire nativeness.
Nevertheless, they identied two situations as principal: birth and a prolonged
residence in the kingdoms, which some of them titled domicile (domicilio)
and others citizenship (vecindad or avecindamiento). Hugo de Celso, for
example, specically mentioned that despite the variety of ways to acquire na-
tiveness, birth, nurture (crianza), or long residence are the principal ways.
Gregorio Lpez de Tovar stressed the fact that a ten years residence could
transform foreigners born outside the kingdom into natives. Yet residence,
domicile, and citizenship were three different realities. Residence referred to
the material presence of a person in a given territory. Domicile included the
idea that this presence was voluntary, and that it incorporated the intention to
remain in that place permanently. Citizenship could be similar to domicile, or
it could include other proofs for the newcomers insertion in the community
such as marriage, owning property, and the payment of taxes.
The only common thread in these situations was the idea that people who
met the enumerated criteria loved the community and were loyal to it. In the
case of individuals born in Spain to Spanish parents, it was automatically
assumed that they loved the community and felt loyal to it. This assumption
was based on the belief that natural law dictated that people loved the land of
their birth. This belief appeared in the Siete Partidas, and it was repeatedly
stated by authors, such as Jos Mara Alvarez, who cited the Partidass deni-
tion of nativeness, or Gernimo de Uztariz, who attested in 1742: I know
children in this city born of parents that were both foreigners and educated
under their eyes, that are in their heart and manners more Spaniards than
foreigners, I may add in language, for they chose rather to speak the dialect of
Naturaleza: Community of the Kingdom 71

this kingdom and are averse to their fathers, though they hear nothing else at
home but his native language. This does not surprise me, when I consider what
effect the place of birth usually has, the great inuence of the rst acquaintance
and society we contract in the world.
The native born could be trusted, but foreigners could not. They were re-
jected because they were not obliged to the community, neither with faith,
nor with love. Because foreigners did not love the community they were
dangerous. Foreigners did not identify with local interests, and they hoped
to benet from their association with Castile while planning to later return to
their community of origin: These foreigners who have dignities and beneces
in our kingdoms want to be in their lands more than in a foreign land. They
will take out the money [they earn] from our kingdoms, leaving them with
great damage and poverty and enriching foreign kingdoms, even enemy king-
doms. . . . When prelates and other beneciaries are natives, they help us . . . in
the war against the Moors and the defense of the royal crown of our king-
doms. All of this is not true when the prelates and beneciaries are not our
People who loved the community could thus be considered natives. People
who did not love the community were classied as foreigners. Yet, as Baltasar
Alamos de Barrientos, Gernimo de Uztariz, and Pedro Fernndez Navarrete
pointed out, foreigners who xed their domicile in Castile, where they owned
a house or were married to a native, no longer posed a threat. Although they
may not afford us the affection and reliance of native and loyal subjects,
they were still worthy of nativeness. The presumption was that their lengthy
or close association with the community created a sufcient sense of loy-
alty. As trustworthy people, they could be granted the rights of natives.
Implied in these observations was the idea that certain foreigners went
through some sort of conversion that allowed them to abandon their condi-
tion as outsiders. This conversion transpired without the intervention of the
authorities. It was a by-product of the association between a person and a
community, an association that could be established in a variety of ways. It
could depend on residence, but it could also be generated by other factors,
such as birth in the jurisdiction, marriage to a native, or owning property.
It could be demonstrated by the fact that the foreigner severed all ties to
his community of origin because he no longer hoped to return there. What
was important was not the specic way this association came about, but
the guarantee it supplied for the persons good intentions. In the words of a
seventeenth-century observer: Almost all the foreigners who live in this city
[Seville?] are very naturalized in it, some of them for the many years in which
they had lived here, others also for having been born in it, others because they
72 Naturaleza: Community of the Kingdom

were married in many cases with natives, or their daughters married natives,
reasons for which they have established deep roots that made them love and
desire the best for these kingdoms. Indeed, certain foreigners could be con-
sidered natives because most of them lived in Cdiz for 20, 30, 40, and 50
years, and they are married with natives, and they have their estate and family
there, without having any dependency on Portugal. These foreigners, al-
though not formally declared natives, were connaturalized, their residence
being in substance the same as if they were declared natives. Their conver-
sion to natives was both legal and social. Indeed, it even affected their nature.
For example, according to some authors, Frenchmen who were sufciently
integrated in Spain acted in a way that combined Spanish grave-character
with French Lightness.
Because of this understanding that permanent resident foreigners, many of
whom were citizens of local communities, no longer posed threat to the Cas-
tilian and Spanish communities, legal enactments became less important than
the intentions that they sought to reproduce. The conditions stipulated by the
laws governing nativeness and naturalization were interpreted as legal pre-
sumptions. Similar to their role in the local sphere, these presumptions aimed
to help the authorities distinguish between true outsiders and integrated for-
eigners who had attained nativeness. The presumptions did not prescribe the
only way foreigners could be transformed into natives. Indeed, individuals
could be declared natives even when they did not fulll the conditions stipu-
lated in the laws if other indications proved that they had tied themselves to
the community. For example, in 1769, Ignacio Barra obtained recognition that
he was a native on the grounds that he was well rooted in Spain and would
probably never leave the country. In the same year, Antonio Rafael Mengs
was able to demonstrate his love of Spain by establishing a school of arts in
Madrid and training many disciples. Despite being married to an Irish com-
patriot and thus lacking one of the requirements for naturalization, Roberto
White was granted naturalization because he had purchased a house and
obtained citizenship in Cdiz, and the authorities believed that he wanted to
establish a permanent domicile in Spain.
People who lacked the legal requirements could obtain their naturalization,
as often as others were denied the status of natives despite fullling these
requirements if their loyalty was questioned. Juan Jernimo Burgu, a French-
man, resided in the Iberian peninsula for many years and was occupied in
different commercial undertakings rst in Cdiz and then in San Sebastin.
According to the local authorities, despite this permanence and his status as a
local citizen, it remained unclear whether he was truly tied to Spain. He had no
Naturaleza: Community of the Kingdom 73

Spanish partners, employed only Frenchmen in his household, and he ran a

business initially set up by his brother, who was married to a French woman
and who had recently returned to France with his Spanish-born children. It
was also unclear whether the properties Juan Jernimo was managing were his
own. Because of the lack of effective proofs that he wished to remain, and the
indications that he might not, his petition for naturalization was denied.
Although Bernardo Micheu had resided in Spain for more than seventeen
years, in 1762 his residence was considered temporary, leading the authorities
to refuse his naturalization.
It appears that, contrary to what we may have believed in the past, grants
of nativeness that did not conform to the conditions stipulated in the laws
were not necessarily unlawful. Nor was the refusal to grant nativeness to
individuals who complied with all the legal requirements necessarily an illegal
act. Instead, these decisions followed legal and political practices that were
broader than the written law, practices that most historians have ignored. In
the words of the representative of royal interests in the Council of the Indies:

There could be a case, in which all the circumstances [enumerated in the laws]
would be present, yet by law it would be impossible to declare the person
native. . . . This would be the case of foreigners who had resided in the
kingdom for a sufcient time, yet who must be considered transients because
they lack the wish to remain or to establish domicile. . . . This is the way we
must understand the Partida law, which establishes that a ten-year residence is
sufcient to obtain nativeness. This law must be interpreted in the following
way: the ten-year residence operates a presumption that the petitioner wishes
to remain in the country permanently. If there is a contrary presumption, or
contrary proofs, the ten-year residence is insufcient to grant nativeness.

Indeed, if one is to pay attention to the wording of the Partida it is clear that a
ten-year residence does not convert foreigners into natives. What converts
foreigners into natives is the wish to remain.
The idea that foreigners could become natives based on proof that they
felt loyal to the community established a close association between nativeness
and citizenship. Foreigners who obtained citizenship could easily demonstrate
their nativeness and, indeed, citizenship acquisition was a common proof of
integration in the community of natives. Faustino Borgnis Desbordes came to
Puerto Santa Mara in the early 1760s. Fifteen years later he requested recog-
nition as native of Spain. This was owed to him because he was a citizen and
because he came to the country with the intention to establish domicile. This
intention, Faustino argued, could be proved by the fact that he had married
74 Naturaleza: Community of the Kingdom

a native-born spouse, had children, and had established his business there.
Through this activity, he had become connaturalized (connaturalizado) and
rooted (arraigado) in Spain.
Given the importance of integration, and the understanding that integration
always happens on a local level and within the boundaries of a specic com-
munity, local authorities became involved in processes of naturalization. They
were asked to render judgment regarding the status of foreigners residing in
their district, and their afrmation that these foreigners acted as Spaniards and
were attached to the local community was essential to the recognition that
these foreigners were already natives, or merited naturalization.
Persons who lost their citizenship risked becoming nonnatives. This was the
opinion of Gregorio Lpez de Tovar and Juan de Hevia Bolaos, according to
whom if a native of the kingdom, or anyone reputed as native, leaves the
kingdom and resides in a foreign kingdom, where he establishes domicile, if he
later pretends to be a native, he is no longer considered native. Benito
Gernimo Feijo agreed with them, pointing out: Spain is the object of love of
all Spaniards. This rule applies when migration to another country does not
convert Spaniards into members of another society, in which case they must
love that other society more than the country where they were born. This
obligation [to love] the republic does not depend on birth in the district, but on
being a component of its society. Therefore, people who legitimately emigrate
from their country of birth and x their domicile in another dominion owe the
same obligation to the new republic as to the one they had to the republic where
they were born, and they must regard this new republic as their patria.
Natives who severed their ties with the local community, who established a
permanent residence outside Castile or Spain, or who married a foreigner
while residing abroad could lose their status as natives. These people and
especially their sons could not hold public ofces or emigrate to Spanish Amer-
ica. If they wished to remain natives despite their detachment from the com-
munity, they had to prove that their cases were exceptional. Joseph Larrugia
was born in Baza (jurisdiction of Granada) to parents who were natives of the
kingdom of Castile. At a young age, he was sent to Malta, where he was
educated in the seminary of the Order of San Juan to which he now belonged.
In 1786, Joseph requested the royal council to declare him a true Spaniard
(verdadero espaol ), eligible to receive an ecclesiastical benece. Joseph ex-
plained that the other members of the order suspected he was a foreigner, and
they therefore refused to grant him the privileges that were rightfully his.
Despite his absence from Spain, he declared, he never renounced his condition
as native. In another case, Octavio Ximnes Aldeano presented to the royal
council letters from two Spanish overseas ofcials who considered him of the
Naturaleza: Community of the Kingdom 75

Spanish nation, despite having been born in Sicily. He insisted on his wish
to return to the primitive privileges of his great-grandfather and requested a
declaration that he was a native. He attempted to demonstrate that his family
whose genealogy he presentedhad always been employed in royal service.
As a result, despite their physical absence from the kingdom, its members
never intended to severe their relationships with the community. They en-
joyed the exception, reproduced in the Recopilacin de Castilla, according to
which if the parents . . . were outside these kingdoms in our service, or
according to our order, or as transients and without establishing domicile
outside these kingdoms, their sons born abroad would be considered natives
of these lands.
Although Octavios request was denied, other candidates were more fortu-
nate. The father of Ignacio Aguirre had emigrated to Rome, where he obtained
an ecclesiastical ofce and married a Roman woman. These factors apparently
indicated that he had decided to establish domicile in that city and that his
membership in the Spanish community had expired. Nevertheless, his son
asserted that such was not the case. Before the ten years required to establish
domicile had passed, Ignacios father was nominated as a secretary of the
Spanish postman in Rome. In this way, he conserved the nativeness of Spain,
which he could retain as a royal servant. Because his father, abroad on royal
service, was Spanish, so was he. Furthermore, Ignacio himself was employed
in the same ofce and his attachment to the Spanish community was demon-
strated by his membership in the Spanish confraternity of Rome, with which
he credited the same possession [of nativeness] and proved his wish and
intention to retain and conserve it. Upon his request, Ignacio was declared
Being eligible to rights and obligations in the kingdom was, therefore, inde-
pendent of formal declarations and of formal circumstances, such as birth and
descent. People were natives or foreigners by virtue of their internal decision to
be a permanent member of the community. This decision was assumed in the
case of natives who continued to live in the jurisdiction. After all, natives
naturally loved their place of birth. Yet an internal decision could also be
deduced by observing the behavior of foreigners who resided in Spain or
natives of Spain who left it. The idea that integrated foreigners underwent a
conversion that truly effected their nature was clear in their designation as
natives rather than naturalized. Their nativeness, it was said, was con-
stituted by the passage of time (mediante el tiempo) or simply by prescrip-
tion (naturaleza por va de prescripcin).
People living in seventeenth-century Castile and eighteenth-century Spain
requested formal declaration that they were natives when they feared conict
76 Naturaleza: Community of the Kingdom

or were experiencing one. Among them were natives who were suspected of
foreignness. In 1624, Guillermo Bequer explained that although according to
the law he was native, he did not dare to act as native because of the contin-
uous hustle he suffered, as well as his designation as a foreigner. Joseph
Larrugia asked to be declared truly Spaniard (verdadero espaol ) in order
to prove to his colleagues of the Order of San Juan that he was worthy of an
ecclesiastical benece. Other people who requested to be formally declared
natives were foreigners who, having been naturalized in Spain by way of
prescription, found it necessary to obtain also a formal declaration. Juan
Olavide, born in France, arrived to Spain as a child in 1746. He completed a
university degree in Alcal and became a candidate (opositor) for a fellowship.
Those competing with him raised the issue of his foreignness, which would
make him ineligible. Although the university rejected these claims, these pre-
cedents did not diminish his fear that he would be unable to receive ecclesiasti-
cal benece in these kingdoms unless he proceeded to request a formal declara-
tion that he was native. Nor is he assured by the fact that his brother Miguel de
Olavide, who lives in Lima, was allowed to trade in the Indies. He had spent
so much money in his academic degree that it would be highly prejudicial to
him if he had to abandon the Spanish kingdoms. Furthermore, abandoning
these kingdoms would be impractical, since he was so connaturalized in them
and would have difculty in any language other than Spanish. Juans re-
quest was granted on the grounds that he virtually grew up in Spain. Antonio
Mara Benchi wished to obtain a formal naturalization so that no one will
ever consider him a foreigner. Faustino Borgnis explained that he was al-
ready connaturalized in Spain, and now all he required was a formal declara-
tion of this fact.

Royal Naturalization Policies

In the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries royal naturalization poli-
cies became a major issue in relations between the monarch, the parliament
(cortes), and local communities. Royal naturalization policies were consid-
ered by the parliament and communities an unwelcome intervention in these
natural processes of communal construction. These policies enabled the king
to naturalize whomever and whenever he saw t. They allowed the monarch
to contravene the monopoly on ofce holding by naturalizing undeserving
foreigners subsequent to their appointment to ofce and solely to render them
eligible for that ofce. Using this method, the crown was able to grant ofces
and beneces to many of its foreign clients, thus depriving the natives of their
right to exclusivity. In the fteenth and sixteenth century, the king transformed
Naturaleza: Community of the Kingdom 77

royal councilors, ambassadors, and bankers into natives. In the eighteenth

century, he continued to do the same and allowed royal servants, including
various nobles, military men, members of the royal household, and royal
confessors, to enjoy the privileges of natives. In order for natives to preserve
their monopoly on ofce holding, it became essential to restrict the power of
the king to naturalize foreigners.
Although this struggle to restrict the power of the king to naturalize foreign-
ers began with the inception of the monopoly in the late Middle Ages, it
become a central issue in tax negotiations between the king and the kingdom
only in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. In return for their consent
to pay extraordinary contributions (servicio de millones), the representatives
of the kingdom in parliament repeatedly demanded a royal pledge to respect
the monopoly on ofce holding and a royal promise to never again naturalize
foreigners. The king agreed to these demands, but royal ministers devised
new methods by which to continue the old practice. Arguing that each case
involved unique people and unique services to the crown, royal secretaries
requested that the parliament make exceptions to the general rule and agree to
the naturalization of specic foreigners as early as 1632. This strategy was
used in the seventeenth century, and it continued through the eighteenth.
Because the parliament rarely met during the eighteenth century, royal secre-
taries wrote to the cities with a vote in parliament and requested their consent
individually. This practice, which originated in Castile, was applied every-
where in Spain after the kingdoms of Aragon were placed under obedience to
Castilian law in the beginning of the eighteenth century (170716). Seek-
ing individual permission was formally acknowledged as a routine method
in 1715 and was reproduced in the rst compilation of Spanish law, the
Novsima Recopilacin.
As happened in parliament during the seventeenth century, when asked to
give their approval for the naturalization of foreigners in the eighteenth cen-
tury, individual communities occasionally protested. Although their protest
was expressed mainly in the language of obedience, it nevertheless stated that
the king abused his authority by granting naturalization to unworthy people.
He exercised his powers freely to gratify his servants and their clients for
services rendered and to build a loyal clientele and a subservient adminis-
tration. This freedom had neither legal nor political justication. Foreigners
could not be transformed into natives simply because the king wished it.
Instead, the transformation of foreigners into natives was a matter of natural
and not civil law, and the king could not modify its requirements and pro-
cedures. The king was also bound by the tax agreement he made with the
kingdom. This agreement beneted third parties, so even if the contracting
78 Naturaleza: Community of the Kingdom

parties (the king and kingdom) were willing to modify the agreement, the king
requesting permission to naturalize foreigners and the kingdom acceding, they
could not do so. As a third party, any individual living in the kingdom could
make a claim against such a modication and compel the king and kingdom to
enforce the original agreement. The Recopilacin de Castilla recognized this
right, setting the rule that we [the kings] order and give faculty to all and each
one of our subjects and natives that they may oppose and resist on these issues
[naturalization], because this opposition concerns the privileges and honors
and it guards the preeminence of the king and patria.
Although the kingdom and the cities with a vote in parliament argued
against royal naturalization policies in the seventeenth and eighteenth cen-
turies, they did not once invoke the need to change the denition of nativeness
and foreignness. Implicitly, they accepted the idea that foreigners could be
transformed into natives through their activities, which proved their loyalty.
What they rejected was the notion that foreigners who were not integrated in
the community could be given the rights of natives solely because the king
wished it so.
This willingness to accept foreigners naturalized by integration and to reject
those naturalized by the king can also be seen in the fact that when the king
naturalized integrated foreigners there was little or no challenge at all. For
example, in 1783, there was general agreement that Antonio Krasa merited his
letter of naturalization as he had resided in the court since 1772, preaching
and hearing confession in some six different languages as well as teaching
music. The same thing was true of Angel Saviana, who served as a chaplain
rst in Naples, then in Barcelona. He was well known in the jurisdiction and
was famous for the number of Protestant heretics he converted to the Cath-
olic faith. By the same token, conict was especially intense when candidates
for royal naturalization clearly lacked an attachment to Spain, either because
their residence in the jurisdiction was deemed temporary or because they
resided elsewhere.
The conict between the king and the kingdom regarding naturalization
policies encouraged royal ofcials to develop a clearer distinction between
naturalization by integration (prescription) and naturalization by royal grant.
This distinction became a standing feature of eighteenth-century political de-
bates and was now advocated by both the kingdom and the king. The cities
with votes in parliament used it to distinguish between foreigners who were
worthy of naturalization (by integration) and those who were not (by royal
letter). Royal ofcials used it to establish when the kingdom could oppose a
candidates naturalization. Approval of the kingdom to depart from the terms
of the tax agreement, royal ofcial argued, was required only in cases where
Naturaleza: Community of the Kingdom 79

candidates for naturalization were true foreigners rather than integrated

ones. Only in these cases did the king convert complete aliens into natives, and
only in these cases did he potentially contravene his promise not to do so. In all
other cases involving integrated foreigners, the opinion of the kingdom was
irrelevant because integrated foreigners were already natives: Bernardo Be-
gues enjoys the privileges of native of these kingdoms because he had perma-
nent residence and domicile in them for many years . . . and is married with
children and is rooted in the principate of Asturias. . . . The naturalization
letter which he requests is no other than a declaration of nativeness. This
declaration is almost due in justice to a person who, like Bernardo Begues,
already participates in the privileges of natives of this kingdom. In order to
grant it [the declaration], it is unnecessary to obtain the agreement of the cities
with vote in parliament. Because letters granted to integrated foreigners
constituted nothing new, they should be issued free of charge: It will be very
just and convenient to the state that foreigners requesting the concession of
this and similar grants will not be asked to pay for them in cases in which they
are already citizens in Spain. This will encourage other people who request the
same grace to establish their domicile in these kingdoms.
One way royal ofcials attempted to reduce the kingdoms opposition to the
grant of naturalization by the king was by restricting the legal consequences of
these grants. Beginning in the late seventeenth century, instead of granting
nonintegrated foreigners true and total naturalization, most royal letters of
naturalization specied the reason they were issued and restricted their effect
to this reason alone. Foreigners who received these types of naturalization
were not considered natives of the kingdoms. Instead, they were made equal
to natives only in order to enjoy a specic right or privilege, ofce, or salary. In
all other respects and for all other ends, they remained aliens. At the end of this
process, an analytical distinction was established between four different types
of letters of naturalization. The rst naturalization was absolute, and it
allowed foreigners to enjoy the rights of natives without any limitation. The
second naturalization only habilitated them to obtain secular ofces. The third
only permitted their access to a specic ecclesiastical benece, and the fourth
granted access to a specic secular ofce.
This solution clearly contravened the monopoly on ofce holding. If ofces
and salaries were reserved to natives, then the only way to justify their al-
location to foreigners was by claiming that certain people who were once
foreigners were no longer truly aliens. Integrated into the community, these
people could be granted privileges and be expected to comply with duties.
Naturalizing individuals to make them eligible for ofce and limiting the con-
sequences of the grant to this ofce alone did exactly the contrary. It afrmed
80 Naturaleza: Community of the Kingdom

that people who continued to be complete aliens could nevertheless be em-

ployed in ofces and enjoy beneces reserved for natives. Indeed, the aware-
ness that these types of naturalization were a legal ction is signaled by the fact
that by the second half of the eighteenth century most of them were called
dispensas. These legal instruments exempted people from certain legal re-
quirements, thus permitting them to do something that they otherwise could
not do. Dispensas included, for example, orders to treat minors as though they
were of age so they could manage their own affairs and decrees that trans-
formed illegitimate children into legitimate heirs.
Beyond the specic circumstances of each foreigner and each case, the de-
bate between the king and the kingdom concerning royal naturalization pol-
icies involved a political struggle over questions of sovereignty and parliamen-
tary control. The king and his ministers insisted that naturalization was a
royal affair; it depended on royal grace and could be practiced by the mon-
archs as they pleased and to reward whom they saw t. Royal naturalization
letters were a useful instrument in afrming royal sovereignty precisely be-
cause they dictated against the common or general law: The sovereigns are
legislators and according to the circumstances of the subjects and their own
pleasure they can . . . make exceptions and allow certain foreigners to hold
ecclesiastical ofces . . . otherwise, there will be a total subordination or
subjection of the sovereignty, which is absurd and very bad, and for the same
reason there was an innite number of similar examples in all of the Christian
kingdoms. The community of the kingdom disagreed. Individual munici-
palities, the parliament, and at times even royal ministers maintained that the
naturalization of foreigners was not a royal affair. It affected the entire com-
munity, and it depended on natural law and on Castilian legal traditions. If the
king wanted the kingdoms collaboration, for example, in tax payment, he
would have to respect these laws and traditions. Yet the question had implica-
tions beyond the sovereignty of the king versus the power of local commu-
nities and legal traditions. Implied in the debate was a disagreement about the
nature of the community. The model advocated by the king (that foreigners
who sought naturalization needed to establish tiesusually service or pa-
tronage tieswith the monarch) constructed the Castilian and Spanish com-
munity as a community of vassals in which each individual was tied to the
monarch and the monarch alone. The model advocated by the kingdom, on
the contrary, allowed foreigners to become natives only when they tied them-
selves to the other members, thereby integrating themselves in a local commu-
nity. According to this view, the community of the kingdom was an association
between local communities that were themselves built from the ties among
integrated individuals.
Naturaleza: Community of the Kingdom 81

The degree to which legal traditions could circumscribe the power of the
king to dene the community was reafrmed in other ways as well. In 1707
16 the Aragonese kingdoms were subjected to obedience to Castilian law. One
of the most important measures included in this reform was the unication of
many communities of natives (natives of Castile, natives of Aragon, and so on)
into a single community that was dened according to Castilian law. Castilian
traditions determined who was a native of the kingdoms of Spain, and Cas-
tilian practices, such as requesting the permission of the kingdom to naturalize
exceptional foreigners, were implemented in non-Castilian kingdoms, where
foreigners were now identied as natives according to the Castilian doctrine.
Yet, despite royal wishes, in the years following its enactment, the formation
of this united community ran into problems. Ecclesiastical beneces, for ex-
ample, were regulated by both local and papal legislation. In Catalonia, the
monopoly of natives was embodied in local legislation, which recognized the
principle of reciprocity. Foreigners, it stipulated, were excluded from beneces
only as long as their countries of origin followed the same policy with regard
to Catalans. Under these circumstances, the creation of a single community of
Spanish natives posed no particular challenge. Such a community could be
established either by changing the Catalan laws (which depended on local
legislation) or by stipulating thatnow that Catalans could hold beneces
anywhere in Spainother Spaniards should be able to do the same in Cata-
lonia. The situation in Aragon was similar and posed no problems. In Valen-
cia, however, the exclusion of nonnatives from ecclesiastical beneces won
papal approval. Because the exclusion was embodied in papal legislation,
neither the king nor the local authorities could modify it. Nevertheless, Valen-
cias legal arrangements recognized the principle of reciprocity. Consequently,
although the law itself could not be modied, its practical effect could, by
making sure that natives of Valencia would be allowed to hold ofces through-
out Spain. In Majorca the restrictions were based on papal bulls, which did
not include the principle of reciprocity. This meant that there was no mecha-
nism allowing the king or the local authorities to intervene in the status quo
and end the monopoly of natives. In spite of the application of Castilian law
on the island and the royal wish to end the coexistence of various communities
of natives in Spain, natives of Majorca would remain the only ones allowed to
hold ecclesiastical beneces in the jurisdiction. Because of reciprocityrecog-
nized elsewhere in Spainthey would also be barred from exercising similar
privileges in the other Iberian kingdoms.
Candidates for ofces who suffered the consequences of this arrangement
lamented this conclusion. Natives of Majorca were isolated geographically by
the sea that separated them from the Spanish mainland. Tied to an island,
82 Naturaleza: Community of the Kingdom

which they rarely left, Majorcans falsely believed that other Spaniards were
different from themselves. They were convinced that if they ever left their
homes monstrous things would happen to them. Majorcans were like a ca-
daver: instead of allowing a natural circulation in their community and en-
couraging mutual correspondence and participation with other Spaniards,
they were left on their own, without the stimulation of exchange. The isolation
of Majorca was also distasteful to royal ofcials. The representative of royal
interests ( scal ) in the Council of Castile believed that the good of the state
required that all differences between Majorca and the rest of Spain imme-
diately cease to exist. Linguistic differencesMajorca being a Catalan-
speaking regionwere insufcient to justify excluding Castilians from eccle-
siastical beneces. On the contrary, linguistic differences justied forcing a
Castilian presence on Majorca as this presence would guarantee that the lin-
gua franca of Spain would nally be used in that region.
These difculties could be resolved only by moving away from the monop-
oly on ofce and focusing instead on the community for whom ofces were
reserved. In Catalonia, the eighteenth-century royal decrees were interpreted
as a measure of collective naturalization that converted all non-Catalan Span-
iards into Catalans. It was as Catalans rather than as Spaniards that
these people could now obtain beneces reserved to natives. In Aragon, a
different interpretation was used. The turn-of-the-century decrees did not
abolish the monopoly on ofce holding, but rather changed the denition of
the community enjoying its protection. Whereas the previous community
included only natives of Aragon, the current community was composed of all
natives of all Spanish kingdoms. In 1772, similar arguments were made with
regard to Majorca. Although one could not modify the monopoly on ofce
holding as practiced in the island, one could claim that the community pro-
tected by it had changed. According to Castilian law, now in force in Majorca,
there was only a single community of natives in Spain. As a result, ofces in
Majorca should indeed be reserved to natives, but nativeness should now
embrace all Spaniards of all kingdoms.

Foreign Merchants and the Obligation to Become Native

By the mid-eighteenth century, the discussion about who was eligible to
hold ofce in Castile and Spain was paralleled by a growing protest against
integrated foreigners who refused to assume Spanish nativeness. This protest
was especially directed at foreign merchants who often resided on Spanish soil
for many years but nevertheless refused to consider themselves natives, or who
alternatively adopted nativeness or foreignness according to their convenience
Naturaleza: Community of the Kingdom 83

and needs: Although it is true that many of these merchants are Irish in ori-
gin, although they enjoy all privileges as if they were of this country, they
are angry when one considers them Spanish. These foreigners, it was
now claimed by intellectuals, local communities, and merchant associations
throughout Spain, enjoyed the best of all worlds. As outsiders, they were
exempt from tax payment and from subjection to the local authorities and to
most restrictions on trade. As permanent residents, they were treated as
natives and enjoyed all that Spain had to offer. In the words of the junta of
commerce and agriculture of Valencia:

[They] participate (though they do not want to admit it) in the same benets
as the natives in the interior of this kingdom, and even if they do not achieve
other benets than that of coming to the kingdom with a humble and low
beginning, working their way up in prejudice of your vassals, who if it were
not for them would have done the same and taken this work, it would seem
that this would be sufcient in order to have them happily embrace the funda-
mental laws of this kingdom and obey blindly your soft and sovereign pre-
cepts. On the contrary, Seor. They resist them with all their forces and they
do not omit any measure, even the most irregular, in order not to obey them.

Resentment was accompanied by the demand that those beneting from priv-
ileges be induced to comply with duties: May the clear and happy day come,
Seor, in which the old and ourishing commerce of our Spain be reborn; may
foreigners come to Spain, merchants, artisans, and the hard-working, and they
will subject themselves to our laws and to the obligations of the state and enjoy
with us the benets. Indeed, reason and good political maxims state . . . that
he who participates in the benets of the republic, must also participate in the
obligations. Foreigners should be allowed to come to Spain and should be
admitted as other members are to the pastureland and other communal prop-
erties. They should be able to hold public ofces and participate in the local
militia. Yet in return, they must obey Spanish law, declare their allegiance to
the Spanish monarch, and pay taxes.
The opinion that Spanish practices favored foreigners at the expense of
natives encouraged the crystallization of a distinction between extranjeros
transeuntes (transient foreigners) and extranjeros avecindados y arraigados
(integrated citizen foreigners). This distinction, formally elaborated in 1716
by the junta de extranjeros (a dependency of the Council of State) in order to
dene its jurisdiction, was now used to identify people who despite their
foreign origin were natives. It established the rule that transient foreigners
would enjoy the fuero de extranjera and would be treated as aliens, while
integrated citizen foreigners would be compared to natives in both privileges
84 Naturaleza: Community of the Kingdom

and obligations and would be considered vassals of this crown and subjects
to the status and laws of Spaniards. Among integrated citizen foreigners
now considered nativeswere people who received naturalization letters or
who were born in Spain. Also included were foreigners who had converted to
Catholicism in Spain (which was equal to a spiritual rebirth in Spain), had
established a domicile there, had received citizenship (vecindad) in a Spanish
local community, had married a Spaniard, had bought property, had worked
as an independent artisan or retail merchant or were employed in honorary
posts (all of which were theoretically reserved for natives of the kingdom), had
acted as vecinos using municipal property, had resided in Spain for more than
ten years with an open house, or had, according to common or royal law,
obtained nativeness or citizenship (vecindad) in Spain. These people shared a
common behavior indicating that they wished to establish permanent ties with
the Spanish community. In some cases, this behavior included a formal admis-
sionfor example, the acquisition of naturalization or citizenship letters. In
others, it was implicit in the candidates behavior. Candidates who acted as a
citizens of local communities by using the communal pasture, for example, or
as natives of the kingdom by holding ofces reserved to natives, could be
declared natives because they acted as citizens or as natives.
The 1716 instruction followed the rules of the traditional Castilian pre-
sumption regime. It explained the circumstances under which foreigners
would be recognized as natives, circumstances it adopted rst for administra-
tive purposes (to dene the jurisdiction of the junta de extranjeros in 1716)
and then throughout Spain (in order to distinguis natives from foreigners in
the second half of the eighteenth century). This system replicated the duality of
formal declarations, on one hand, and implicit categorizations, on the other.
Formal declarations included letters of naturalization and letters of citizen-
ship. Implicit categorizations were based on the activities of each candidate
that theoretically demonstrated his decision to become a member. Citizenship
in a local community was formally instituted as a mechanism of conversion
that allowed foreigners to become natives. Indeed, independent of their origin
and descent, people who were citizens of local communities, through either
formal or implicit means, were now by extension clearly natives. The 1716
ruling thus formally acknowledged the existing relationship between vecindad
and naturaleza.
In the second half of the eighteenth century, and coinciding with the above-
mentioned complaints about foreign residents who refused to comply with the
duties of Spaniards, the 1716 instruction became a powerful tool. Instead of
waiting for foreigners to afrm their integration in the community either by
requesting their naturalization or by simply exercising the rights of natives,
Naturaleza: Community of the Kingdom 85

beginning in the 1750s the authorities, using the criteria established in 1716,
proceeded to classify aliens on their own initiative. Motivated by the wish to
facilitate knowledge of who was who, and who was worthy of which treat-
ment, they ordered local authorities to elaborate lists of both transient and
domiciled citizen foreigners. The central authorities hoped that, after the
lists were complied, it would be possible to ensure that each person received
the treatment he deserved. True foreigners (transient aliens) would be ex-
cluded from the rights of natives, and natives (integrated citizen foreigners)
would be forced to comply with the duties that corresponded to them.
The idea that transient aliens could be distinguished systematically from
integrated foreigners was easy to conceive but hard to apply. The complexity
of the question came to light when the local authorities attempted to elaborate
the desired lists. The foreign community in Spain refused to cooperate with
this effort and denounced the measure as tyrannical. Many foreigners of long
standing wished to conserve their status as aliens and refused to be treated as
vassals of Spain. Juan Bautista Valerino, a municipal judge (alcalde de
barrio) in Seville, claimed he had no domicile in the city. Antonio de Arbone,
who was a member of a local dynasty of foreign merchants and served as the
French consul, also pretended to reside in the jurisdiction only temporarily. In
Orn, Juan Pedro Prats, who was married to a Spaniard, had fathered ve
children, and had a retail shop and a house, declared his wish to remain vassal
of the French king and to be considered a transient foreigner. Others who had
only recently arrived to Spain claimed that they were integrated and thus
natives. A third group of foreigners moved between one position and the
other. Miguel Charles and Pedro Constayns claimed they were citizens when
they petitioned their admission to the local guild, yet they insisted they were
transients when they were asked to pay taxes. In Valencia, French mer-
chants who were members of the local guild suddenly requested to be classied
as transients.
Perplexed, the local authorities wrote to the central administration in Ma-
drid. Were they obliged to examine the circumstances of each case and
decide whether the foreigner was truly integrated or not? Should the presump-
tions enumerated in the decree constitute proof against foreigners, or could
they be contradicted? Was the inclusion in a list evidence for future reference,
or were foreigners allowed to change their minds, alternately requesting dif-
ferent legal statuses? In question was not only the correct classication of
foreigners, but also the adequate denition of jurisdictional spheres. Accord-
ing to the laws, transient foreigners were under the authority of military com-
manders, and integrated foreigners (now considered natives) were subject to
the ordinary local authorities. Disagreement about the classication of people
86 Naturaleza: Community of the Kingdom

as transient or integrated could thus provoke jurisdictional conicts; the local

authorities could contest the intervention of military commanders in matters
they considered their own and vice versa. Jurisdictional conicts could also
take place regarding the inheritance of foreigners, which was subjected to the
local authorities if they were integrated, and to alien consuls or military com-
manders if they were not.
Madrid at rst insisted on the ofcial criteria, which it judged sufciently
clear. It was only when the lists arriving at the court were classied as insuf-
cient or incorrect that the royal authorities recognized the need to adopt a
different solution. Instead of relying on legal presumptions to discover the true
intentions of foreigners, in 1764 they began to allow foreigners to state their
mind orally. Foreigners were at liberty to choose whether they wanted to be
considered transients or integrated, yet this freedom could be exercised only
once. They would be bound by their choice; the only modication they were
permitted was the passage from a transient to an integrated alien status.
Why introduce oral declarations? The deliberations leading to the decision
and those following it testify to the growing frustration of both ofcials and
candidates with a presumption regime that was highly ambivalent and that
provoked continuous debates. The representative of royal interests ( scal ) in
the Council of State openly debated this question in 1766. The main dif-
culty in classifying foreigners correctly was the need to interpret their inten-
tions by observing their external behavior. A ten-year residence could operate
as a tacit or open expression of will to permanently remain in the commu-
nity. Nevertheless, a residence could be motivated by other considerations. As
a result, it was often unclear how a meaningful residence could be distin-
guished from a nonmeaningful one. The same thing was true of marriage.
Marriage could serve as an indicator of the foreigners intentions, but it was
insufcient on its own. Neither was birth in the jurisdiction sufcient because
it was necessary to wait until the person grew up in order to ascertain whether
he truly felt loyal to the Spanish community or whether he would leave it as
soon as he could. It was just as risky to claim that employment in ofces and
professions reserved to natives demonstrated individuals attachment to the
community, since employment could be based solely on their personal conve-
nience. Instead of adhering to a complex and hybrid regime based on endless
discussions about what could or could not be proved by certain external facts,
it was now time for an efcient and conclusive test. Foreigners would be asked
to declare their intent, and once this declaration was made, they would not be
allowed to change their status. This solution would produce clarity, and the
authorities would have lists permanently dening people as either transient
(and thus foreigners) or integrated (and thus natives). Retrospectively, it was
Naturaleza: Community of the Kingdom 87

explained that the aim of the legislation is that the census will clarify the
doubts with respects to the Frenchmen [the largest foreign community in
Spain] living in Spain, whether they are transitory or naturalized, leaving it to
their own decision on that occasion to chose the concept according to which
they would like to be treated, so that after this election they could be treated
with the corresponding distinction according to the class they elected and the
laws of these kingdoms in both the favorable and the unfavorable. The
wish for clarity was such that it justied suspending the power of ordinary
laws (the presumption regime) and allowing foreigners to choose freely the
category to which they would belong. As a result of the new arrangement,
recently arrived foreigners could be recognized as integrated if they formally
requested it, while, in some cases at least, established aliens could maintain
their foreignness.
Not all Spaniards welcomed this reality. After reviewing the case of a
Frenchman who declared himself a transient foreigner, the local judge (teni-
ente) of Seville expressed his bewilderment and requested the Council of State
to reexamine its policies. It could not have been the royal intention, he wrote,
to allow foreigners to classify themselves as they chose. It was the authorities
duty to decide who was a native of Spain and who was not, and in their
decision, the authorities had to follow the traditional presumption regime.
Although this regime gave some value to the foreigners verbal expressions,
verbal expressions were never sufcient on their own. Oral claims had to be
veried by external facts. Any other solution was inconceivable. It was utterly
unthinkable that foreigners could determine who should be considered a na-
tive of Spain and therefore vassal of the Spanish king. Such a matter was for
Spaniards to decide. Furthermore, the lists were originally created because of
the wish to no longer permit foreigners to freely choose their status. The lists
aimed at identifying foreigners who, by virtue of their behavior, were indeed
natives, forcing them to act as natives, thus ensuring the rights of both com-
munity and king. Adopting a regime based only on oral declarations guaran-
teed the contrary. In short, it was a great novelty, and exorbitant alteration
that must always be avoided.
Similar arguments were invoked by Valencias Junta de Comercio y Agri-
cultura in 1773, yet most other people were willing to allow foreigners to
classify themselves. Among other things, they hoped that this autoclassi-
cation would allow useful foreigners to integrate into the Spanish commu-
nity. It was in Spanish interests, the royal councils argued, to dene nativeness
in the widest possible way, as this would open the community to benecial
newcomers. The more people classied as integrated foreigners and thus na-
tive, the better the situation in Spain would be. Indeed, by the 1770s the
88 Naturaleza: Community of the Kingdom

willingness to permit and even to encourage the arrival and integration of

foreigners in Spain was such that royal ministers portrayed the Spanish com-
munity as a melting pot, made of different elements that gradually converged
into one. Spains origins, they said, could be traced back to the end of Roman
domination and the subsequent conquest of the Iberian peninsula by the
Goths (beginning of the fth century). Land was then distributed among vic-
tors (the Goths) and the vanquished (the Spaniards, then named Romans),
and eventually the two merged into one warlike and powerful community.
Together, they fought against the Muslims. Many foreign soldiers participated
in these campaigns, and many people from all over Christianity came to
Spain and were welcomed into it. The integration of foreigners into Spain
was not new. Foreigners were always welcome in Spain, and, in fact, many
Spaniards were of foreign origin.
Despite good intentions, the classication of foreigners continued to be as
uncertain as it had been before, and foreigners were still able to change their
status according to their needs and desires. New instructions were elabo-
rated in 1791, probably motivated by the desire to control the movement of
French immigrants and to avoid the spread of revolutionary ideas. These
instructions ordered foreigners who wanted to be recognized as Spaniards to
attest formally their wish and subsequently to swear obedience to the Catholic
Church and the Spanish sovereign, as well as to Spanish law. Ofcially
renouncing their status as aliens ( fuero de extranjera), these foreigners would
agree to terminate their relations, union, and dependency on the country in
which they were born, promising not to use its protection, nor its ambas-
sadors, ministers, or consuls. After the ceremony ended, they would be
understood and reputed to belong to the class of Spanish vassals, separated
from their original status and community. Foreigners who, on the con-
trary, wished to be classied as transients would require special licenses if they
wanted to remain in Spain, and their professional activities would be severely
restricted. As outsiders, they would not be allowed to practice the liberal arts
or mechanical ofces, and they would be unable to engage in artisanal or retail
mercantile activities. They would also be required to take a special oath, in
which they would promise to submit themselves to the sovereign and to obey
the laws of Spain as long as they remained on Spanish soil.
By that end of this process, either foreigners acquiesced and became Span-
iards, or they lost their right to remain in Spain. Although these measures
could be explained, as they often were in the past, by the war situation, it is
clear that they were in tune with similar developments in Castilian local com-
munities. Contemporary Castilian local communities insisted that people
should either commit themselves fully to the community or leave. What was
Naturaleza: Community of the Kingdom 89

intolerable was the presence of people who enjoyed the benets of residing in
the community but who refused to act as true members of it, that is, accept its
The late eighteenth-century passage from legal presumption to oral declara-
tion changed the balance of power between local communities, the kingdom,
and the king. Under the presumption regime, communities played an impor-
tant role in the acceptance of foreigners into the kingdom. The presumptions
tied citizenship to nativeness and determined that people who were formally
accepted as citizens, or who acted as citizens, were also by extension natives.
Foreigners could become part of the community of the kingdom through an
integration that could be achieved only by establishing ties with a concrete
local community. Under a regime based on oral declarations, admission of
foreigners by local communities was no longer required, and foreigners could
be classied as integrated by declaring their intentions to remain in Spain
before they actually established themselves in the community. At the same
time, integrated alienswho were true members of local communitieswere
allowed to remain foreigners. The fact that by the end of the eighteenth cen-
tury nativeness could no longer depend on citizenship or local integration was
specically stipulated in a 1791 decree ordering local communities to accept as
citizens all foreigners who had already obtained recognition as natives.
Such foreigners-made-into-natives now enjoyed the freedom of all Spaniards
to immigrate and settle where they wished. Rather than making integration a
precondition for their acceptance as natives, their status as natives now al-
lowed these foreigners to claim integration in local communities. Indeed, in-
stead of citizenship giving persons the right to nativeness, nativeness now gave
foreigners the right to citizenship. In short, under the new regime, the inclu-
sion of foreigners in both the local and the Spanish community came to de-
pend only on their wishes, on one hand, and on the kingwho gave them the
power to do soon the other. Once again, the royal administration justied
these developments by presenting naturalization as a royal prerogative. The
king, royal ofcials argued, could change the rules governing nativeness and
naturalization because the conversion of foreigners into natives was a regala,
a faculty that depended only on the monarch: Because of his pure moderation
and justice, the king wanted to grant it [the right to declare intentions]. The
laws of Spain identify foreigners who should be reputed as natives, and the
king could have ordered that foreigners will subject themselves to all payments
and obligations as such . . . which would have been part of is sovereignty, but
he did not. Instead, he allowed foreigners to choose the treatment that they
would receive.
The discussions between the king and kingdom regarding the monopoly on
90 Naturaleza: Community of the Kingdom

ofce holding and the identication of foreigners in the eighteenth century

thus involved identifying but also inventing the rules allowing foreigners to
become natives. According to royal ofcials, these rules were a royal creation
and depended on the royal will. According to the merchants and representa-
tives of local communities, they were determined by a natural law: only people
who loved the community and were integrated into it could enjoy the rights of
members. Rather than a community of vassals, the Spanish community was a
conglomerate of many local communities, each with the power to convert
foreigners into natives by integrating them and admitting them to citizenship.
Despite claims of royal sovereignty, some ministers expressed their fear that
the king was not truly at liberty to decide on the conversion of foreigners into
natives. This conversion, the junta de extranjeros stated, was not just an inter-
nal matter as it could affect the kings international obligations. Among
these obligations, for example, were the family pacts celebrated in the eigh-
teenth century between the French and Spanish monarchs. These pacts guar-
anteed that natives of France would be treated as natives in Spain and vice
versa. Spanish legislation stipulating that those acting as natives were in
fact natives could thus be interpreted as a breach of the family pacts, as it
automatically converted all those enjoying the privileges contained in these
pacts into Spaniards, a conversion certainly not envisioned or desired by the
French kings.
These concerns were well founded. Foreign representatives in Spain pro-
tested against the new policies and claimed that Spain could not unilaterally
change the way it treated foreign nationals. Especially vocal in this respect
was the French ambassador, who represented the largest foreign community
in Spain. The French ambassador stated that the Spanish viewwhich con-
verted all integrated foreigners into vassals and nationals was completely
unacceptable. Nativeness and domicile were two different regimes, and
each activated a different set of rights and obligations. Although certain types
of residence could indeed prove the persons intention to abandon the country
of his birth, such cases were limited and were not well represented in contem-
porary Spanish legislation. According to the ambassador, it was essential that
Spaniards respect the laws of the nations, as well as the ancient Spanish laws
with regards to both nativeness and naturalization. The Spanish authorities
rejected these claims. They insisted that the denition of the Spanish commu-
nity was an internal Spanish affair and that foreign powers could not inter-
vene. Each sovereign was free to establish and enforce the laws of his own
territory. It was in the kingdoms interest to clarify who was a member of the
community and who was not, and this verication was a duty of sovereignty.
According to the Spanish understanding, integrated foreigners were already
Naturaleza: Community of the Kingdom 91

disconnected from their community of birth by virtue of their integration in

Spain. Because they were no longer aliens, foreign monarchs had no say in
their status and foreign delegates in Spain could not defend their interests.

The construction of a community of natives rst in Castile and then in
Spain was a long historical process that depended on different interests and
actors. This process involved a concern for ofce holding and the use of eccle-
siastical beneces, and it caused a confrontation between Spanish and foreign
merchants. The same process also created conicts between the king and the
kingdom over issues of sovereignty and the right to classify people as natives
or foreigners. The construction of a community of natives required determin-
ing whether nativeness and naturalization depended on natural law or civil
law, and it brought into light two different understandings of the community:
one perceived the kingdom as a community of the kings vassals; the other saw
the community as made up of individuals tied to one another and to specic
local communities. By the eighteenth century, discussions on nativeness in
Castile were extended to the rest of Spain. This extension was not void of
difculties, precisely because the kings power to change the existing situation
was limited. By that period, confrontation over the identication of people
worthy of ofces and beneces was paralleled by the wish to protect local
merchants against unloyal foreign competition, and the desire to force all
those permanently residing in Spain to act as natives. It was also during this
period that pressure from merchant and local communities alike led the au-
thorities to search for a more straightforward regime that would eliminate
ambiguities and would classify people once and for all. Their success at ob-
taining such a regime was limited. Until the end of the eighteenth century, the
distinction between foreigners and natives was still highly debatable, and in
practice foreigners could act as natives on some occasions and as foreigners in
Initially representing a complex relationship between people, their lord, and
the land, by the early modern period nativeness mainly depended on the estab-
lishment of a relationship between individuals living on the same space. As
Jos Mara Alvarez put it in 1818, nativeness represented the natural inclina-
tion that people who are born or live in the same place and under the same
government feel to one another. This consideration has so much power, that it
perfectly imitates nature: as one can admit adopted children to the group of
relatives, one can also accept foreigners who legitimately established domicile
in the community. Because both birth and residence allowed people to
92 Naturaleza: Community of the Kingdom

acquire nativeness, citizenship and nativeness were closely associated. This

association was timidly present in the thirteenth century, at least according to
eighteenth-century readings. It became clearer in the following centuries
and was present in the striking similarities between the conditions required to
obtain both statuses and in the conviction that people who were citizens were
also capable of obtaining recognition as natives. By 1716, the distinction
between transient and integrated foreigners stated that the acquisition of cit-
izenship was the same as the acquisition of nativeness. Thereafter, foreigners
who acquired citizenship (whether formally, through the acceptance of a letter
of citizenship, or implicitly through acting as citizens) were recognized auto-
matically as natives. It was also during this period that both the represen-
tatives of the kingdom and royal ofcials clearly distinguished between inte-
gration, which naturally converted people from one status to the other, and
formal procedures (letters of naturalization), which conferred status solely at
the will of the king. Eventually, the wish to create a clear regime that would
classify people once and for all led to important shifts. The presumption re-
gime was abandoned, and in its place foreigners were allowed to attest their
intentions orally. This change practically suspended the relation between na-
tiveness and integration, on one hand, and local communities and the commu-
nity of the kingdom, on the other. Thereafter people could be transformed into
natives without obtaining integration or citizenship.
Nevertheless, the relation between citizenship and nativeness was not com-
pletely abandoned. This relation was present in the writing of Pedro Fernn-
dez Navarrete who in 1972, speaking about the naturalization of foreigners,
described this process as one in which forasteros become citizens. It was
also present in 1805, when it was inscribed in the rst Spanish law code. The
Novsima Recopilacin de las leyes de Espaa published that year stated that
the 1716 decree (which spoke about natives) xed the circumstances that
foreigners must have in order to be considered citizens (vecinos) of these
kingdoms. Replacing nativeness with citizenship without changing
any of the conditions required in order to obtain this status, the 1805 law also
stated that both nativeness and citizenship were mechanisms of conver-
sion, and that both enabled foreigners to acquire what was now called vecin-
dad in the kingdoms. From a 1805 perspective, it becomes clear that late
seventeenth- and eighteenth-century developments in Castile and elsewhere in
Spain eventually led to the creation of a citizenship regime for the Spanish
world. Whether conceived as vecindad or naturaleza, this regime emerged
without destroying local denitions. Striking a balance between a larger com-
munity (the community of the kingdoms) and many individual local commu-
nities, it constructed citizenship as a natural membership dependent on inte-
Naturaleza: Community of the Kingdom 93

gration and not on birthright. The community it portrayed was organic rather
than articial.
Royal interventions were always presented as extraordinary. The king inter-
vened in order to change the existing rules. Yet, his right to do so, and to act on
the margin of communal traditions, was continuously questioned. Contempo-
raries presented society as a natural mechanism that could run perfectly on its
own. According to them, people could be converted from natives into for-
eigners and vice versa without ofcial intervention. A discourse of love was
central to this argument. People naturally loved the community where they
were born, and foreigners could naturally come to love the community where
they resided for a lengthy period and where they had established roots. The
king and the state were external to these processes. They were called to inter-
vene only when problems emerged, and when conict could not be resolved
within the community. In these instances they were requested to declare of-
cially that certain integrated foreigners were already natives, either to enable
them to enjoy rights or to force them to comply with duties. Indeed, it was only
when societys self-regulating and natural processes broke down that royal
action became legitimate. In all other cases, the king and his administration
were expected to do nothing, and their claim that they could and must act
for example, by naturalizing foreignerswas completely rejected.

Naturaleza: From Castile to Spanish America

Soon after the Spanish arrival in the New World, the Spanish king began
regulating the relationship between the Old World and this overseas domain. In
a series of laws dating from the early sixteenth century, the crown instituted a
legal monopoly: only natives of the kingdoms of Spain could immigrate, settle,
and trade in Spanish America. Also, only certain certied Castilian ports
mainly Sevillecould maintain contacts with similarly certied American
ports, and only Spanish ships, manned by Spaniards, could travel between
them. In the following decades, the presencedespite these prohibitionsof
foreigners in Spanish America set about an endless chain of royal decrees
demanding that local authorities locate these illegal immigrants and expel them
from the continent. As a result of these measures, whenever people wanted to
immigrate or trade in the New World, and whenever they were included in lists
of foreigners to be expelled, a conict arose that could be resolved only through
their formal classication as natives or foreigners.
The way discussions on the right to immigrate and trade in the New World
contributed to the formation of a Spanish community is to a large degree a story
untold. Many historians have assumed that for purposes of trade and immigra-
tion, nativeness was a straightforward category whose interpretation varied
because of illegal practices or human understandings that permitted a

Naturaleza: Spanish America 95

working compromise between justice and decency. Other scholars presented

the struggle to dene who could engage in the colonial enterprise as a national-
istic struggle, never realizing that nativeness itself was being constructed in the
process. Most campaigns to expel foreigners from Spanish America were of
interest to historians as a source of data to enumerate, classify, and study that
continents foreign population. Earlier investigations thus made no effort to
analyze why certain people were classied as native while others were not.
Yet, as in Castile and Spain, the category of natives of the kingdoms of
Spain as implemented in Spanish America and by the colonial institutions
residing in Spain was a highly complex social and legal construct. Especially
striking in Spanish America was the importance of commercial interests and
the agency of merchants and merchant associations in the classication of
people. Because of this agency, naturalization by integration (prescription),
which was so common in Castile, disappeared. In Spanish America, foreigners
who wished to be treated as natives in order to immigrate and to trade in
Spanish America had to obtain a formal naturalization letter. The legislation
that sanctioned this disappearance, however, failed to eradicate naturalization
by integration. Even after its enactment, integration still served as a measure
against which foreigners were judged. In addition, a new regime was instituted
(composicin) in Spanish America, one that allowed integrated foreigners to
remain in the continent despite the illegality of their presence.
Another important difference between the Castilian and Spanish American
views of nativeness was the never-ending struggle in Spanish America to dis-
tinguish between natives and naturalized foreigners and to restrict the priv-
ileges of the latter mainly by attesting that they were not completely trustwor-
thy. This struggle, which was especially important in the eighteenth century,
had two different expressions. First, it led to the conclusion that, although a
single community of true natives existed in Spain and Spanish America,
foreigners naturalized in Spain remained aliens in Spanish America. Likewise,
naturalization in the New World could not make one native of Spain. Second,
it allowed the claim that foreigners who were naturalized in Spanish America
would never be equal to true natives.
Once again, none of these developments were clearly expressed in the laws.
Perhaps for this reason, historians who examined the laws regarding foreign
presence in Spanish America generally failed to appreciate the complexity of
these questions or to understand the meaning of legal changes introduced over
the years. They were, in fact, completely unfamiliar with debates about native-
ness in Spain, the importance of legal doctrines, and the evolution of social and
legal practices in the classication of people as natives and foreigners.
96 Naturaleza: Spanish America

Natives of Spain in Spanish America

The stage upon which Spanish American deliberations on nativeness

and foreignness took place was radically different from the Castilian one. In
Castile, these deliberations initially centered on the development and con-
tinuation of the monopoly on ofce holding. The king was brought into con-
ict with the parliament, the cities with a vote in parliament, and individual
communities, all of which disagreed on how to assess the suitability of candi-
dates for ofce and on the procedures for transforming foreigners into natives.
These entities debated how to distinguish Castilians from other natives of the
kingdoms of Spain, as well from other foreigners. By the eighteenth century,
this peninsular debate was further complicated by the claim of Spanish mer-
chants and local communities against the presence of non-Spanish foreigners
who, while enjoying the rights of natives, refused to comply with the corre-
sponding duties. These developments led to the demand that people either
fully commit themselves to Spain or be expelled.
In Spanish America, on the contrary, issues of nativeness usually centered on
foreigners who wished to participate in the transatlantic trade. Conict with
natives of Spain, whose economic and commercial undertakings were pro-
tected by the Spanish monopoly, was unavoidable. Most active among these
natives were the members of the merchant guild (consulado) established in
Seville in 1543. The merchant guild was a corporation of all merchants le-
gally trading in the city. Meant to serve primarily as a court for commercial
litigation, the guild also defended certain practices and lobbied for legislation
to protect and favor its members. Another important agent in the Spanish
American discussion was the House of Trade (casa de contratacin), also
located in Seville. This royal court, charged with controlling and directing all
communication and trade with the Indies, granted licenses-of-passage to the
Americas after investigating the identity of applicants and ascertaining that
they were natives.
Both institutions were founded in the sixteenth century, and the House of
Trade was in the beginning the more dominant. In time, however, the mer-
chant guild became the more active partner. It eventually monopolized the
organization and nancing of eets and the licensing of ships, people, and
merchandise. By the early seventeenth century, it frequently intervened in
discussions about the nativeness of individuals, and by 1633, when the crown
recognized the guild as an interested party in all decisions concerning the
nativeness of people in order to trade in the Indies, this intervention became
ofcial. As an interested party, the guild was notied of all naturalization
requests and was asked to give its opinion on the nativeness or foreignness of
Naturaleza: Spanish America 97

candidates for immigration. Its role was so preeminent that crown ofcials
voiced their disappointment when the guild failed to express its view. This
rarely happened. In most cases, the merchants responded eagerly to their
newly acquired function and, on their own initiative, even produced lists of
foreigners to be expelled from Spanish America. Whenever a persons classi-
cation was debated, individual merchants or the guild acting for them, per-
sonied in the courts, wrote allegations, presented petitions, and did every-
thing possible to ensure that nativeness was acknowledged in people who met
with their approval.
Most parties to the discussion on nativeness in order to immigrate and
trade in Spanish America were thus merchants, and commercial interests
were foremost on their minds. These interests could be local and have as their
goal the classication of business competitors as foreigners. Such a decision
would ensure the competitors expulsion from the Americas or disqualify him
from participating in transatlantic trade. These interests also might include
wider economic concerns, such as the wish to protect the internal market or to
ensure the accumulation of precious metals.

Mercantile Agency and the Identication of Natives

The effect that mercantile agency had on the Spanish American debate
on nativeness and foreignness rst became apparent at the beginning of the
seventeenth century. Until then, the Castilian understanding of nativeness was
implemented in the Americas, and those who qualied as natives in Castile
were considered natives of the kingdom of Spain for the purpose of engaging
in the colonial enterprise. This was the explicit instruction of the crown. The
Spanish king specied, for example in 1561, 1562, and 1566, that foreigners
(1) who were citizens of local Spanish communities, or (2) who had acted as
citizens of local communities, had lived in the kingdoms for ten years with
house and property, and were married to natives, or (3) those who had come to
Spanish America illegally but had then lived there for at least ten years and were
accompanied by their wives must be considered natives (ser habidos) and must
be allowed to reside and trade in Spanish America. Accordingly, in the 1580s,
several foreigners obtained recognition that, as citizens (vecinos) of Seville, they
were also, by extension, natives of Spain and eligible to emigrate to and trade in
the New World. For example, in 1581, Francisco de Spnola was allowed to
immigrate to Spanish America because he had resided in Seville for more than
twenty years. This residence he said, and the authorities agreed with him,
accrued him the right to both vecindad and naturaleza. A similar venue was
followed by Rui Fernndes Pereyra, who rst obtained a carta de vecindad in
98 Naturaleza: Spanish America

Seville and then proceeded to request recognition as native. But as the six-
teenth century drew to a close, and as the commercial power of foreign (natu-
ralized) transatlantic merchants became evident, this understanding of native-
ness gradually came under attack. Under the continuing pressure of Sevilles
merchant guild, new regulations were enacted, eventually creating important
differences between Castilian and Spanish American practices.
Although the rst indications of this separation in practices were present at
the end of the sixteenth century, it was only in the early seventeenth century
that Sevilles guild was able to achieve important gains. As happened in
Castile during the same period, these gains were tied to negotiations concern-
ing the collection and payment of taxes. In 1591, the guild agreed to collect the
avera, the tax that nanced the military escort for the annual eets from
Seville to Spanish America. This agreement implied that the guild promised
to hand over to the royal treasury a certain sum. Theoretically the guild was
charged with collecting this money, but it would have to pay the sum whether
the collection was successful or not. As was customary under tax farming, the
guild received important concessions in return for its willingness to collabo-
rate with the crown. It obtained jurisdiction over bankruptcy litigation, as
well as a decree that instructed royal authorities to stop granting foreigners
licenses of passage to Spanish America. The guild reasoned that if foreigners
were not allowed to cross the Atlantic, they would not be able to obtain
naturalization by integration there. This would put an end to naturalization
by prescription in Spanish America, as people could no longer acquire rights
by exercising them. It would guarantee the immediate cessation of the in-
tervention of naturalized aliens in the transatlantic trade because foreigners
would no longer be allowed to attain the status of natives.
When the guild refused to take on the collection of avera in 1598, the
crown was forced to contract with a group of individual merchants, a solution
that turned out to be impractical and unfortunate. In 1608, when the guild
was once again willing to administer the same tax, the crown was ready to
make considerable concessions. These concessions, enacted in 1608 and
later reproduced in the main compilation of Spanish American law (Recopila-
cin de Indias), were tied to the denition of nativeness and foreignness in
order to immigrate and trade in Spanish America. At the guilds request, the
king explicitly revoked the sixteenth-century decrees that allowed foreigners
naturalized by integration to immigrate and trade in the New World. The king
then determined that foreigners who wished to be considered natives in order
to immigrate and trade in the Americas would be required to seek a formal
recognition of their status as natives. The Council of the Indies, which received
Naturaleza: Spanish America 99

information from the municipality where the foreigners lived, would grant
this recognition by issuing a letter of naturalization. Before such a document
could be issued, the council had to examine whether the foreigner resided in
Spanish territories for at least twenty years (instead of the ten years required in
Castile), and whether he was married and had a sufcient amount of property.
These modications meant that from 1608 onward the path for implicit and
automatic naturalizationso common in Castilewas no longer available to
those claiming nativeness in order to immigrate or trade in Spanish America.
In their case, it was no longer sufcient to prove their citizenship in a local
community, or to assert in any other way that they were integrated in the
kingdom and thus natives. What was required, instead, was a formal letter of
naturalization. The adoption of more stringent requirements, the merchants
claimed, was essential to the verication of the true intentions of foreigner
merchants. It was common practice among merchants to live in foreign coun-
tries for a prolonged period, to marry local women, and to purchase proper-
ties. As a result, residence, marriage, and property, which in cases involving
nonmerchants were sufcient to ascertain their intentions, were for merchants
almost useless. Furthermore, in the case of merchants, the common assump-
tion was that their residence depended on their trade; once this trade was
completed, they would leave the jurisdiction. Rather than allowing the pre-
sumptions of residence, marriage, and property to work on their own, it was
essential in the case of foreign merchants to institute formal procedures to
verify whether what appeared to be integration was indeed integration. Be-
cause so many foreigners wanted to participate in the Spanish American trade,
and because this participation was considered prejudicial to Spanish interests,
it was crucial to maintain formal procedures to verify the status of individuals
in the Spanish American case. These procedures were designed to guarantee
that only foreigners worthy of nativeness would indeed be allowed to trade in
the colonies.
The merchant guild insisted on the strict application of these new rules, and
its organs and individuals constantly stressed the differences between Cas-
tilian and New World practices. They repeated that in the Americas there was
no need to distinguish transient from integrated foreigners because, in the
Americas, foreigners were either legal because they were formally naturalized,
or not. How different is the law of residence in the Indies, than in the king-
doms of Spain! In the kingdoms of Spain a ten-year residence, marriage, and
the owning of property allow to consider the foreigner a native, nativeness
being introduced by way of prescription when the requisites for it are met. But
in the Indies, marriage, property, and a ten- or even a twenty-year residence do
100 Naturaleza: Spanish America

not produce nativeness. They only produce merits, which allow the king in his
supreme council to grant naturalization by issuing a letter of naturalization,
which is the only way it is possible to acquire nativeness.
The delegation of responsibility on this issue to the Council of the Indies
was typical. The royal administration was divided by councils, each having a
jurisdiction over certain matters or territories. It was thus natural that only the
Council of the Indies could issue letters concerning the New World, and that
letters granted by other councilsfor example, the Council of Castilecould
have no effect in Spanish America. Therefore, foreigners who wanted to be
considered natives in Spanish America had to address the Council of the In-
dies. Their recognition as natives of Spain by, say, the Council of Castile was
insufcient to guarantee immigration and trade rights in the New World.
Although enjoying the status of natives in Spain, in the New World these
people were considered foreigners.
Despite mercantile efforts, the eradication of Castilian naturalization by
integration was only partially successful. There are several indications that the
viceroy of New Spain and the metropolitan authorities exchanged letters on
this issue from 1670 to 1693. The viceroy argued that naturalization by
prescription was still available to foreigners who wished to reside in Spanish
America; the 1608 decision should be applied only to foreigners who wished
to engage in the transatlantic trade. He saw this not only as the correct legal
interpretation of the 1608 decision, but also as a just solution according to the
law of nations, which admitted integrated foreigners into communities. On
this occasion the Council of the Indies disagreed, but in 1680 its members
voted in favor of recognizing integrated foreigners as natives. Responding to
a royal decree that criticized the council for allowing too many foreigners to
naturalize in Spanish America, the council explained that the presence of
foreigners in Spanish America was indeed prohibited, but despite all efforts
many foreigners were able to cross the Atlantic and settle there. Well rooted
in the continent, they married local women, raised sons, and owned property.
According to the council, these factors indicated that they no longer had love
for their motherland, and that they established perpetuity and domicile in
these provinces, so that much of the fear and many of the disadvantages
usually associated with their temporary settlement, ceased to exist.
In the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries the same opinion was held by
Spanish American communities that distinguished between foreigners who
were integrated and trustworthy and those who were not. On different occa-
sions the councils of Santiago de los Caballeros (Santo Domingo), Cartagena
de Indias (Nueva Granada), and Guayaquil (Quito) indeed asked the authori-
ties to allow their foreign citizens to remain on the continent despite the
Naturaleza: Spanish America 101

illegality of their presence. In 1763, the local governor (corregidor) of Rio-

bamba (Quito) acted in a similar way. He asked the president of the local royal
court (audiencia) to tolerate the presence of Ignacio Verenux, a Catholic Irish-
man, in the jurisdiction. Ignacio had been allowed to reside in Riobamba
because he is a Catholic Irishman, because his manners and behavior did not
justify a contrary solution . . . and not ignoring the privileges that individuals
of his nation who are Catholics, enjoy in the dominions of our sovereign in
Europe [where they are recognized as natives]. Ignacio himself explained
that once I found myself distant from the danger from which I ed, and found
security and tranquility in my Christian faith, enjoying this benet for over ten
years, in which I live among Spaniards and in their lands, I now pretend and
promise to swear domicile and citizenship in the place which will be most
convenient to me, among those included in the province of Quito. . . . I
therefore request that I be admitted to the corporation ( gremio) of the Spanish
nation and would be allowed to become citizen . . . without any further
opposition or obstacles under the pretext that I am a foreigner, because I
should not be called foreigner. Ignacio was allowed to remain in Quito be-
cause he was a miner, and the local royal court considered this residence
useful. Other nonnaturalized foreigners also argued that by virtue of their
integration in the community they were no longer truly foreigners. In 1775,
Nicols Campe, who had been living in Spain and in Spanish America for
more than ten years, was married to a Spaniard, had established a house, and
had children and property claimed that his behavior and activities naturalized
him automatically, independent of any decision taken by the authorities.
Other foreigners in similar circumstances also asserted that a long residence
in Spanish territories and services to the crown earned them both vecindad and
Naturalization by integration was also advocated by the merchants when
they considered it benecial to their collective interests or when they wanted to
protect a particular colleague. In 1677, the merchant guild of Seville offered
the crown a donation in return for not investigating the foreignness or native-
ness of Francisco Marqus de Granada who was a member of the corporation.
In 1688, the guild did the same for a group of foreign merchants residing in
Seville and Cdiz. The merchants also agreed that it was logical to dis-
tinguish between integrated and transient foreigners and they consented that
foreigners who had lived in the territory for twenty years with property, house,
and family were indeed of a different quality than transient aliens. This qual-
ity, which was based on the aliens behavior, ensured their trustworthiness
even when they lacked formal naturalization.
The idea that integrated foreigners were no longer dangerous inuenced the
102 Naturaleza: Spanish America

way the authorities implemented the new (post-1608) naturalization regime.

During the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, the Council of the Indies
which was now the only body responsible for formalizing a persons status
continued to implement Castilian understanding regarding nativeness and
foreignness. Judging the worthiness of candidates, the council searched for
indications that they were integrated into the local society. The council re-
mained faithful to the idea that foreigners who were tied to local communities
(vecinos) were also tied by extension to the community of the kingdom (natu-
rales). It also held, as did Castilian ofcials, courts, and litigants, that the
requirements specied in naturalization laws (twenty years residence, mar-
riage, and owning a certain amount of property) were only legal presump-
tions. As was the case with all legal presumptions, it was legitimate to ignore
them if they weighed too heavily on specic candidates or, on the contrary,
rested too lightly on others. As a result of such considerations, in 1743, for
example, the Council of the Indies recommended the naturalization of An-
tonio Butler despite the fact that he was a bachelor. The council stated that the
legal condition of marriage could be ignored because it was a mere presump-
tion and because given his age . . . and other external acts . . . he manifested
his constant wish to remain in Spain. Antonio was a Catholic, the owner of
a large estate, and had been living in Cdiz for more than thirty years without
ever leaving the jurisdiction. He was not a simple bachelor hoping one day
to marry, nor was he married in another country. Instead, he chose to remain
on his own willfully. This choice did not demonstrate that he did not wish to
remain in Spain, and it should thus not bar him from naturalizing. The council
issued a similar recommendation in the case of Pablo Capitanache. Pablo was
not married, nor had he sufcient property. Yet he credited his wish to remain
in these realms, a wish previously expressed by living in a house for over 33
years and by his reception as a citizen (vecino) of Cdiz in 1739. Extrajudicial
information assures us that the candidate is not a transient foreigner but a
domiciled one, and there are sufcient reasons to believe that he will not return
to his place of origin. In yet another case, Pedro Lazaleta was granted
naturalization in 1768 despite lacking sufcient property because he had lived
in Spain since 1735, had married a native in 1742 with whom he had children,
kept a house, and acted in all respects as a native, clearly demonstrating his
wish (nimo) to become a member of the community.
The persistence of integration as an indication of the ability and the right of
foreigners to naturalize in Spanish America meant that candidates for natural-
ization in the New World engaged in arguments very similar to those invoked
by foreigners in Castile. In both places it was useful to fulll the legal prerequi-
sites for naturalization, but simply meeting these requirements was neither
Naturaleza: Spanish America 103

necessary nor sufcient to achieve ones deserved status. What was required
instead was to prove ones wish to become a Spaniard and to demonstrate
ones commitment to the local community. Following this logic, Luis Vacaya
asserted in 1697 that he was already conaturalized in the community. He
had rendered many services to the crown, more than most other natives did.
He thus demonstrated in his behavior his wish to remain in the kingdoms,
which was the only important fact for deciding his case. Other candidates for
Spanish American naturalization demonstrated that they severed their ties
with their community of origin, and they argued that they were integrated in
Spain. In the words of Valerio Martino, native of Naples and merchant in
Cdiz: Since the rst moment, I resisted participating in the national meetings
of the Neapolitans and contributing to their association, without allowing my
name be included in their lists, and having always behaved as a true Spaniard
in commercial dealings, negotiations, and other activities.
As in Spain, Spanish American naturalization was only a formal recognition
of a situation that had been generated earlier on its own. Rather than convert-
ing foreigners into natives, naturalization veried that certain foreigners were
already integrated and were thus worthy of treatment as natives. This verica-
tion required interpreting the meaning of an external behavior. Again, as in
Spain, this interpretation could be consensual or it could provoke debate. The
House of Trade and the merchant guild often disagreed about how certain
facts should be interpreted and evaluated. In these cases, although formally
what mattered was the interpretation of the intentions of foreigners, the re-
sults also depended on the balance of power between these two institutions, as
well as the role played by the Council of the Indies, royal secretaries, and the
king. On occasion, the king insisted that the decision was his to make. He
demanded a complete and detailed le on each candidate, and he asserted his
independence by stating that he could reject the recommendation of the mer-
chants, the House of Trade, and royal ministers. The merchant guild and the
House of Trade argued the contrary. Contesting the power of the Council of
the Indies and even the king, they attested that only they knew who was
worthy of which treatment. Foreigners requesting naturalization in order to
trade in the Indies were usually well known either in Cdiz or in Seville. The
House of Trade and the guild were thus best placed to examine their petitions
and attest to the true nature of their intentions. Their value as eyewitnesses
was enhanced by their capacity as expert witnesses who knew merchants and
understood them best. Indeed, in most cases, the recommendation of the guild
or the House of Trade was crucial to the success or failure of a petition.
Favorable recommendation by the House of Trade and the guild usually as-
sured naturalization, and disapproval barred it.
104 Naturaleza: Spanish America

Conicts between the king and the merchant guild were not limited to
arguments over who could best understand foreign merchants. At times the
guild pressured the monarch to cancel all letters of naturalization issued to
foreigners they considered unworthy. In the mid-seventeenth century, the guild
claimed that of 126 foreigners naturalized by letters, only 13 met the legal
criteria and only 21 others almost did. The guild was particularly militant
in cases of naturalization issued for services rendered to the monarch or pur-
chased by some means. In 1622, for example, Jorge de Paz de Silvera, a Por-
tuguese merchant, included the receipt of an American naturalization letter as
one of his conditions for lending the crown 1,000 escudos for the needs of the
war in Flanders. Not only did Jorge not meet the legal requirement for natu-
ralization, but when he renounced his intention of using this grant, he re-
quested that it be extended to Domingo de Herrera, a partner of his. The
guild insisted, as did Castilian local communities, that the king could not
admit foreigners to the community at will. It argued that, according to natural
and royal laws, only integrated foreigners were worthy of treatment as na-
tives. Royal ofcials, echoing their response in Castile, were divided about
how to proceed. Some ministers felt that the grant of letters to total foreigners
was so pernicious that the matter was serious enough to justify revoking all
letters given in the past. Other ministers sympathized with the protest yet
recommended against revoking the letters. They determined that letters of
naturalization were a contract between the king and the foreigners and that, as
for all other royal obligations, they could not be withdrawn unless justied by
a compelling public interest. This second group of ministers recommended
that the letters remain in force because revoking them would cause social
upheaval. However, the king should avoid granting similar letters in the
Needless to say, the king continued to issue naturalization letters to noninte-
grated foreigners, and merchant opposition only served to limit the effects of
some of these grants. As in peninsular Spain where four different types of
naturalization existed, in Spanish America naturalization letters often distin-
guished between foreigners allowed only to settle in the continent, and those
allowed to trade. Because the effect of these letters was restricted to the
privileges enumerated in them, Gaspar Escalona y Agero concluded that
foreigners allowed to reside or trade in Spanish America were not eligible for
public ofces or ecclesiastical beneces in Spanish America or in Spain.
Eventually, Spanish American naturalization letters were classied as dis-
pensas, that is, as special letters including dispensation from certain legal
requirements. They were enumerated among gracias al sacar, which were
royal grants allowing people to do things that were otherwise prohibited.
Naturaleza: Spanish America 105

Recipients were charged different prices, according to whether they had all the
required attributes, some of them, or none at all.
In Spanish America as in Spain, the communities and merchants opposed
royal policies and insisted on natural ways for foreigners to become natives.
Whereas the king wished to assert his sovereignty and to push his right to
naturalize foreigners, the communities and merchants argued in favor of up-
holding the traditional regime of integration. Once again, two different mod-
els for the Spanish community were at stake. The rst, advocated by the king,
perceived the community as a collection of vassals. The second, advocated by
the communities and the merchants, presented Spain as an association of
people tied to one another.

True Natives and Naturalized Foreigners

Despite continuities, diverging practices did form different communities
of natives on either side of the Atlantic. As a result of the early seventeenth-
century modications (1608), in Spanish America it became essential to verify
in each case whether the person who wanted to immigrate or trade was native
by birth or by integration. Those native by birth, now called natives and orig-
inals, continued to be considered natives in both Spain and Spanish America,
and their rights and duties were identical in both jurisdictions. But those
who were native by integrationwhether through a letter of naturaliza-
tion, through citizenship in Spanish municipal communities, or in some other
wayhad a different status on either side of the ocean. Considered true
natives in peninsular Spain, they were nevertheless treated as foreigners in
Spanish America. As foreigners in Spanish America, they were barred from
immigrating and trading unless they were able to gain formal naturalization
by the Council of the Indies. The representative of royal interests ( scal ) in the
court (audiencia) of Lima summarized this rule in 1762: Those born in king-
doms and provinces not subjected to royal dominion and jurisdiction, even
though naturalized in Spain because they fulll the conditions embodied in the
laws of Castile or in other particular privilege allowing them to reside and live
in Spain, as far as their ability to undertake commercial activity in the Indies,
they are still considered foreigners.
The evolution of different procedures for constituting nativeness in Spain
and Spanish America and the institution of a new distinction between natives
by birth and by integrationthat is, between natives and the naturalized
provoked new instances of political and legal debate. Given the complexity of
the Castilian regime and the Castilian conviction that naturalized foreigners
were natives rather than naturalized, it was often unclear whether certain
106 Naturaleza: Spanish America

individuals were natives by birth or by integration. In both Spain and Spanish

America, people who wished to immigrate and trade in the Indies demanded
to be recognized as natives and originals of the kingdoms. Their demands
were in turn opposed by the monopolist merchants, who classied them in-
stead as foreigners who were naturalized in Castile but who consequently
remained aliens in Spanish America.
One example of such a discussion can be found in the status of people born
in Lower Navarre (Navarra la Baja), which had belonged, theoretically at
least, to the Catholic kings since 1512. Under French domination since
1607, it was formally ceded to the French crown in 1659. In 1669, the Spanish
king declared that natives of Lower Navarre were also natives of the king-
doms of Spain. During the eighteenth century, however, the status of na-
tives of Lower Navarre in Spanish America was highly contentious. In ques-
tion was the correct interpretation of the royal decree that declared them
natives. Was this decree an act of collective naturalization, thus transform-
ing all natives of Lower Navarre into naturalized foreigners, or was it a
declaratory act that formally recognized their previously existing status as
natives and originals of Spain? While natives of Lower Navarre claimed that
the second interpretation was correct, the monopolist merchants and the
courts asserted that the contrary was true. They managed to have their way:
despite their nativeness in Castile, natives of Lower Navarre were prohibited
from immigrating and trading in Spanish America.
Similar doubts were also raised about sons of foreigners born in the king-
doms of Spain (also called genizaros). Declared truly originals and natives
(verdaderamente originales y naturales) in 1620, they found their status
contested in the following century. According to Sevilles merchant guild,
the sons of foreigners were actually naturalized foreigners. As a result, they
needed a special Spanish American naturalization if they wished to participate
in transatlantic trade. The sons of foreigners fought back, contending that
they were true natives of Spain and thus natives in both Spain and Spanish
This debate, which originated in the early seventeenth century, became espe-
cially violent at the beginning of the eighteenth century. It confronted the
merchant guild with a group of sons of foreigners resident in Cdiz, Seville,
Puerto Santa Mara, Mlaga, and San Lcar, towns that were the main ports
of the SpainSpanish America trade network. Motivated by the petition of
some twenty of its members, in 1719 Sevilles merchant guild complained to
the king about what it considered an illegal practice by the House of Trade.
According to the information it supplied, in order to issue licenses to immi-
grate and trade in the Americas, the House of Trade only required candidates
to present copies of the baptismal record that veried their birth in Spain. It
Naturaleza: Spanish America 107

thus failed to distinguish correctly between natives and foreigners. Especially

painful was its disregard for the distinction between those with Spanish par-
ents and those with foreign parents. This distinction was essential. In spite of
the wording of the 1620 decree that declared apparently without limitation
that all sons of foreigners born in Spain were natives, this was not the case.
Birth in the kingdom did not produce nativeness. Instead, nativeness required
a combination of local birth and a native or naturalized parent. Sons of tran-
sient foreigners, even if born in Spain, could never be considered natives by
virtue of their birthplace alone; yet those born in Spain to integrated parents
were in fact Spaniards. The reason for implementing this distinction was clear:
transient parents were true foreigners who, despite their presence in the king-
doms, were still attached to their community of birth, as were their sons.
Integrated foreigners were foreigners who had abandoned their previous alle-
giance to an alien community. Their sons, if born in Spain, merited treatment
as true natives. Echoing similar discussions in Spain, the merchant guild
argued that what was at stake was never the length of residence in the king-
doms. A thousand years of residence, for example, could easily be insuf-
cient to produce nativeness because neither the period of residence, nor birth
grants nativeness. Nativeness is only conferred by the wish to remain. What
was required was some indication that the parents of the Spanish-born child
had decided to sever ties with their community of origin and remain in Spain
permanently. This was the ruling of common law and Spanish law, and this
was common practice throughout Europe, where sons of foreigners were not
treated as natives unless born to domiciled parents.
Like their colleagues in Spain, the transatlantic merchants also criticized the
presumption regime. Residence and property were not always good indicators
of a foreigners intentions as both could be motivated by personal convenience
and could be easily undone. The merchants argued that, because of the em-
ployment of presumptions, many undeserving foreigners obtained their natu-
ralization by simply making sure they fullled certain requirements. In this
way, they fooled the community into believing that they had decided to remain
in Spain, which was a decision they had never made. Many foreigners who
seemed integrated in Spain were not truly loyal to the community: all they
wanted was a license to immigrate and to trade in Spanish America. Among
this number were the sons of foreigners born in the kingdom.
The Council of the Indies agreed with this interpretation. It claried that
only sons of domiciled foreigners born in the kingdom were natives by birth.
Unlike the sons of transient foreigners, they could be allowed to immigrate and
trade in Spanish America without obtaining an independent Spanish American
naturalization letter. Upon request, the council further specied that the estab-
lishment of the parental domicile could occur after the children were born.
108 Naturaleza: Spanish America

In the following years, the practical implications of this decision came to

light. Sons of foreigners who wanted to be treated as true natives in order to
immigrate and trade in Spanish America, had to prove that their parents were
integrated foreigners and thus natives. Carrying the burden of proof, they
were forced to petition, from 1725 onward, the Council of the Indies to recog-
nize them as true natives before they could obtain the necessary licenses of
passage from the House of Trade. This obligation was extremely burden-
some. It involved a large investment in time, energy, and resources. Proofs had
to be collected in the petitioners place of birth and residence. The documents
were sent to the House of Trade, which then solicited the expert opinion of the
merchant guild. Ultimately, the petition and its evidence were transferred to
Madrid, where the case was decided. When evidence was sufcient, the
Council of the Indies declared the petitioner native and original of these
kingdoms and allowed to engage in the Spanish American trade.
Once again, determining the domicile and thus nativeness of parents was a
complicated affair. The father of Juan Joseph Behic resided in Spain for some
forty years, was married to a native, had children, and had always acted as a
Spaniard. However, he remained associated with other natives of France
with whom he had commercial dealings. In 1758, in the presence of a public
notary, he formally declared that this continuing association with his former
compatriots was not personal in nature but was only for business. According
to him, it did not reect on his loyalty to Spain. Was he a true Spaniard who
wanted to live and die in the kingdom? Was his son a true native?
The struggle to bar the sons of foreigners from the Spanish American trade
continued after the ruling of the Council of the Indies. In 1762, Limas mer-
chant guild insisted that only sons of a Spanish mother and a foreign father
could be considered true natives. On the contrary, those whose parents were
both foreigners or whose mother was alien were either aliens or naturalized
foreigners. The Peruvian authorities took a different view, certifying the right
of all sons of domiciled foreigners to trade in Spanish America. Similar
discussions also took place in Spain, where attempts to exclude the sons of
foreigners from the transatlantic trade took on new forms. In the decades
following the initial discussion, Sevilles merchant guild refused to admit the
sons of foreigners as members, thus practically disabling them from participat-
ing in the transatlantic trade. Royal ofcials, who reproached this practice,
declared, once again, that genizaros should be treated like all other native
The struggle against the sons of foreigners, which began by questioning
their (true) nativeness and their right to emigrate and trade in the New World,
soon shifted to questioning the privileges they should be allowed to enjoy.
Naturaleza: Spanish America 109

Having failed to prevent their participation in immigration and trade in the

New World, the merchant guild attempted to institute a distinction between
old Spaniards (espaoles antiguos), and all other natives, such as the sons of
foreigners. It argued that an acquired naturalization could never have the
same legal and social implications as the native and properly original native-
ness. The guild pointed out that the Siete Partidas established this much
when it declared in the thirteenth century that the most perfect nativeness
was the one obtained at birth. Deserving of special treatment much like that
granted to a rst-born child, old Spaniards should be preferred over more
recent natives. This was a sensible conclusion because Spaniards who de-
scended from Spanish families were in the habit of obeying the king for hun-
dreds of years and were therefore more trustworthy than the sons of foreign-
ers. The representative of royal interests in the Council of the Indies agreed
with the merchants:
If one reects on this matter, there is no doubt that a difference exists between
original natives and sons of foreigners. Original natives have always been in
royal domains, both they and their ascendants served the king, without hav-
ing any foreign connections. As a result, their love is more radical and more
perfect. The sons of foreigners cannot refrain from having affection to their
origin, affection that the law considers even more important than the affec-
tion they have to their place of birth. They have their ascendants and relatives
in foreign domains, to whom they look with love, which is induced by blood.
Because of this affection, any ordered republic adopts this policy [that distin-
guishes them from natives]. These natives [naturalized foreigners] have a
relationship with foreign potencies because of family ties and friendship, and
they could communicate to them the state of the kingdom, its disposition,
progress, and resolutions, which must be prohibited because it is so prejudi-
cial to the common good.

The sons of foreigners rejected these claims. They stressed their commitment
to Spain and their worthiness. This commitment depended on their birth,
establishment, and other circumstances that ensured their permanence, having
never known another sovereign, or paid another sovereign taxes, having never
known another patria, domicile, citizenship, or settlement. They have the
prerequisites of birth, establishment, and others, without ever experiencing
that any of them had revoked or returned to the dominions from where his
forefathers came. The Council of the Indies agreed. It stated that the allega-
tions of the guild and the representative of royal interests were absurd, and it
determined that privileges could not be granted on the basis of antiquity in
Spain. No one can prove that he is a descendent of the companions of Tuval,
who because of the confusion of the languages [Tower of Babel] came to live in
110 Naturaleza: Spanish America

Spain, Spain having been so ooded with innumerable nations that even the
most genealogical person cannot boast an origin previous to the Goths, who
came to Spain after many other nations dominated it. . . . Until now, no one had
imagined or thought to form a genealogical tree that would declare his degree
of antiquity in Spain only to obtain license to trade in the Indies.
Ofcial insistence that sons of foreigners were true natives and merited
treatment as such continued through the following decades. In 1774, respond-
ing to a naturalization petition presented by Juan Andrs de Prasca, the Coun-
cil of the Indies declared that Juan Andrs was already a true native. His
nativeness did not depend on formal declarations but arose from the fact that
he was born in Spain, that his father and two uncles had resided in Spain since
1720, and that both he and his father had already obtained Castilian natural-
ization. In doing so, he and his other relatives demonstrated their unwavering
and permanent wish to remain in the kingdoms, a wish that was sufcient to
transform Juan Andrs into a true native.
Litigants and the authorities often lamented the distinction between dif-
ferent types of natives (natives and naturalized or true natives and
other natives) and the construction of two different communities in the New
and the Old Worlds. Most of them, however, pointed out that despite some
differences, nativeness still had the same core meaning in both Spain and
Spanish America. In both places the authorities wished to examine the true
intentions of newcomers, and in both places nativeness was granted to people
who were loyal to the community and who wanted to establish permanent ties
with its members. From this perspective, the differences between Spain and
Spanish America were similar to the variations between the practices of dif-
ferent municipal communities. Although all municipalities in Castile shared
similar notions regarding citizenship (vecindad), each one of them invoked it
according to local needs and understandings, thus bringing about different
consequences. Like some municipalities, the Spanish peninsular community
facilitated the entry of new members by granting them the status of natives
with relative ease in order to encourage needed immigration. Like other mu-
nicipalities, the Spanish American community made procedural requirements
for those wishing to become natives extremely rigorous in order to exercise
control over admissions.

The Regulation of Illegal Presence

Although integrated foreigners could not be naturalized automatically
in Spanish America, their residence and commercial activities were neverthe-
less tolerated. This toleration found expression in the institution of a regime of
Naturaleza: Spanish America 111

special grants called composicin. Composicin was granted through a license

issued by the local authorities to illegal aliens residing in their district. Rather
than consisting of a permit to remain and work in the jurisdiction, it instructed
all subordinate authorities to refrain from taking action against a foreigner
despite his illegal situation, thereby inhibiting the normal course of justice.
Composiciones were irregular grants that could be revoked at the discretion
of the authorities. Their bearers were limited both geographically and tem-
porally. Because the particular privilege they enjoyed stemmed from a specic
local authority, they could not exercise it outside the jurisdiction of the grant-
ing body, and the privilege could expire once the grantor left ofce. Foreigners
who wished to migrate from one American region to another needed to reap-
ply for a composicin each time they moved, and the permits might not pro-
tect them if the authorities launched a campaign to expel foreigners.
Composiciones involved the payment of different fees and constituted an im-
portant source of revenue for the local Spanish American authorities. Yet most
important for our discussion is the fact that they bridged Castilian with Spanish
American practices. In order to receive them, foreigners were required to have
resided in the jurisdiction for a prolonged period, to own or rent a house, to be
married to a native, and so on. This meant that composiciones were granted to
foreigners who, according to the Castilian tradition, would have been consid-
ered natives by integration. They allowed these foreigners to remain in the
community despite the Spanish American legislation prohibiting it.
The similarity between Castilian nativeness by integration and Spanish
American composiciones was openly acknowledged. Juan de Sosa Brito, a
native by integration in Spain and living in Popayn (present-day Colombia)
at the time of his application, was admitted to a composicin on the basis of
his integration. The same happened to Juan Martn Puyrredas, who was
denied naturalization in 1774 but was nevertheless granted composicin the
following year, given his long residence and marriage in Spanish America.

Campaigns to Expel Foreigners from Spanish America

Mercantile engagement in discussions on nativeness and foreignness
was not restricted to Spain. Guilds operated in both the New and the Old
Worlds and were extremely inuential in Spanish America as well, where they
promoted and conducted campaigns to expel illegal foreigners. The activities
of Limas merchant guild in the 1750s and 1760s are most illuminating in this
respect, although evidence suggests that its case was not exceptional and that
similar activities were carried out by merchants in Cartagena, Havana, Buenos
Aires, Mexico City, and Cuzco. Limas guild petitioned the crown in 1759
112 Naturaleza: Spanish America

and 1760 to launch campaigns against the presence of foreign merchants in

Peru. It insisted that better control be exercised in Spain before ships left
port, and it requested authorization to investigate and prosecute merchants
suspected of foreignness. In 1761, it was charged with verifying the nativeness
of people arriving in the port of Buenos Aires, and during the 1760s it collabo-
rated with the viceroy and supplied him with lists of individuals to be expelled
from the realm. Limas merchants also inspected ships arriving at Callao
(Limas port) to determine if any illegal foreigners were on board.
The role played by Limas guild in the identication and prosecution of
foreigners was clear to the people it pursued. Many of them argued that
economic competition or merchant animosity was the only reason for their
placement on expulsion rolls. They were included in the lists because some-
one, somewhere, objected to their presence for reasons having nothing to do
with nativeness and foreignness. Whether truly foreigners or not, the people
targeted in these campaigns expected to be left untouched, and, indeed, this
was usually the case unless a specic merchant, or the merchant community,
considered them dangerous or simply wanted to eliminate them as a source
of competition. In 1762, Pedro Vidarte blamed his misfortune on the guild:
What kind of harm did I do to the merchant guild, or the commerce of this
city and kingdom, if, since I came from Spain, I spent most of my time helping
the most important [local] merchants? Pedro de la Ripa stated in 1723 that
his inclusion in the lists served the interests of particular individuals. There
was no other reason why he, a native Spaniard, would be included in the list.
His commercial rivals, who wanted to see him ruined, promoted the false
accusation that he was a foreigner. Nicols Campe, whose status as a native
or foreigner was indeed unclear, suffered a similar experience in 1775 when he
attempted to collect a debt from Santiago Espantoso (literally Terrifying San-
tiago). Santiago, refusing to repay Nicols, classied him as a foreigner. This
classication seriously compromised Nicolss ability to continue his commer-
cial activities in the jurisdiction, and it denitely allowed Santiago to avoid
repaying the debt.
In many other cases commercial and personal rivalriesand not foreign-
nesswere the true reasons for inclusion on the lists. In 1754, 134 merchants
residing in Panama requested the expulsion of a certain Juan Cranisbrot,
whom they considered very prejudicial to the local trade. In 1761, their
colleagues in Lima acted in a similar vein when they protested against the
presence of Juan Valois, whom they accused of amassing a considerable
fortune estimated at more than one million pesos. In the same year, Limas
merchant guild also admitted that the merchant community of Trujillo (Peru)
initiated the prosecution of Juan Flores because it wanted him to leave. In
Naturaleza: Spanish America 113

1790, a nancial conict between the Conde de Casa Jijn and his French
employee in Otavalo (present-day Ecuador) was also transformed into an
administrative procedure against the rebellious worker now classied as a
foreigner. On occasion, expulsion decrees were issued against people who
had lived in the jurisdiction for ten, twenty, and even thirty years without
being challenged. And because the activities of merchants were so pre-
dominant in these procedures, nonmerchant foreigners had a better chance of
avoiding these inquiries. Since the same was true of aliens who were willing to
promise not to engage in commercial activities, expulsion proceedings fre-
quently depended on the question of whether certain people were artisans or
merchants. The expulsion of Arturo Alejandro Gordn in 1761 hinged on
whether he was a merchant (to be expelled) or a surgeon (to remain as a
professional in Spanish America). Felix Conforto was classied as a merchant
of silver and gold, but he was allowed to stay in Lima after agreeing that he
would cease commerce in metals.
When individuals included in expulsion rolls contested their classication as
foreigners, a judge of the royal court (audiencia) heard their case. On many
such occasions, it became clear that proofs of foreignness were extremely frail.
They might consist, for example, of the testimony of a single witness received in
a secret hearing. The witness was not required to explain how he came to be-
lieve that the accused was an alien. People were classied according to their sur-
names, appearance, behavior, dress, or speech, and witnesses openly admitted
that their testimony was based on public opinion or simple rumors. Some
employed commonsense presumptions, such as the belief that employees of a
well-known French Huguenot family must themselves be foreigners.
Yet distinguishing natives from foreigners was not a simple affair. Don
Ventura Mario Barriero y Figueroa, who was of Galician origin and a Span-
ish hidalgo, was labeled in 1762 as a foreigner because of the foreignness of
his surname. When he was ordered to leave Peru, he protested to the local
courts: I was born in the city of Cangas in the kingdom of Galicia subject to
the Catholic kings of Spain to parents notoriously qualied and known . . .
both natives of this city. He further claimed that the allegations that he was a
foreigner were an injury to him and his parents . . . since it suspected their
nature and nobility, which was among the best in the kingdom. Bernardo
Garca, a native of Valencia, suffered the same fate because of his foreign
pronunciation of Spanish. Bartolom Guilln, born in San Clemente, was
classied as a foreigner: One does not need, in order to know that he is
French, other proofs than his signature, which he drew on the petition . . .
because it uses a style so foreign, as is his speech, so that in his speech and in his
written-letter he has two conclusive witnesses of his foreignness. In 1764,
114 Naturaleza: Spanish America

Francisco Carte y Linze was included on expulsion rolls because his foreign-
ness is notorious, in the rst place . . . because even though he speaks Castilian,
he does not speak it uently . . . and this lack of vocabulary is typical of those
who have acquired the language in an older age.
All these people were later recognized as natives. In discussing their cases,
the courts, royal ofcials, and litigants were forced to admit that cultural and
linguistic tests were not necessarily helpful in distinguishing natives from for-
eigners. There was in fact no single way of being a native of the kingdoms of
Spain because the Spanish kingdoms each possessed their own culture and
language. Catalans were often mistaken as French, and the fate of those born
in Valencia and the Basque provinces was similar. In fact, even the identity of
some Castiliansfor example, natives of Galiciacould be questioned be-
cause they did not conform to expected habits, linguistic capacities, or other
external traits.
The presentation of a genealogical tree was not a guarantee against persecu-
tion. Ventura Mario Barriero y Figueroa, whose case is mentioned above,
went through long judicial proceedings in 1756 to prove his hidalgua (no-
bility). For that end, he supplied ample proof of his genealogy and place of
birth. The results of these proceedings were communicated to the local mer-
chant guild, but only ve years later, in 1761, and on a basis of a single witness,
he was classied as a foreigner.
Certainty about a persons nativeness was very hard to establish, and people
suspected of foreignness, third parties, and the authorities all suffered the
consequences. Foreigners could be treated as natives because no one suspected
they were aliens, and true natives could be wrongly accused of foreignness.
In some cases, public opinion classied the same people as both native and
foreign. In 1795 Buenos Aires, different people who wished to bar Jos Man-
uel Rebelo from the ofce of local judge (alcalde ordinario) classied him as a
foreigner. On that occasion the local authorities explained that Jos Manuel
was elected to ofce because no one suspected that he was a foreigner. The fact
that other foreigners had exercised this ofce was irrelevant, since they were
able to do so only because they were considered natives. Indeed, on many
occasions the authorities confessed their permanent confusion: Finding out
truth in this matter is very difcult, as in the Indies very few or none of those
wishing to remain there confess that they are French, English, Dutch, or of
another nation, instead, they say that they are Castilian, Andalusians, Navar-
res, or from Vizcaya, and they are careful to change their names, in case their
patria is ever examined.
But how could one prove ones nativeness in an early modern world? Most
litigants ended up doing what their detractors did. They enlisted their public
Naturaleza: Spanish America 115

reputation as their aid, and they swore that their condition as natives was a
fact that could not be doubted. Ordered to leave Spanish America because of
his alienness, in 1763 Bernardo Garca protested that despite the contrary
information he was a Spaniard and a native of the city of Valencia. To
back this claim, he presented to the judge commissioned to review his case in
Lima a copy of his license-of-passage to the Americas, which attested that he
was a native of the kingdoms of Spain. The merchant guild of Lima, acting
as an interested party in the proceedings, rejected this proof. It explained that
licenses-of-passage were not a conclusive proof of nativeness because they
were automatically given to all those allowed to sail to Spanish America.
From a formal point of view, the license was not Bernardos; it was issued to
the master with whom Bernardo arrived in the New World. Many foreigners
falsied their names and genealogies in order to receive these licenses, and
Bernardo could well be one of them. The merchant guild explained that in the
hearings it held to produce lists of foreigners, one witness declared that Garca
was not Bernardos true surname, and many others attested that by public
fame he was a foreigner. The guild insisted that the burden of proof was now
on Bernardo, who needed to demonstrate that despite all these indications he
was nevertheless a Spaniard. Bernardo presented seven witnesses before the
judge. Some declared that it was public and notorious that he was a native
of Valencia, as were his parents. Categorizing their information as facts that
needed no proof and could not be legally contradicted ( pblico y notorio),
they protested that it was utterly unthinkable to conclude otherwise. Other
witnesses met him and his parents in Valencia or saw him associate with other
natives of this Spanish kingdom. One attested that he spoke perfect Valen-
ciano, and another reported that his kinsman, who recommended Bernardo,
told him that he was a native of Valencia. The merchant guild remained un-
satised. It classied these proofs as very weak because none of the wit-
nesses present in Lima could actually attest to Bernardos identity, birthplace,
and genealogy. Bernardo had no documents, such as a baptismal record, to
support his claim, and whatever was afrmed by way of public knowledge
could be contradicted by the same knowledge that attested that he was a
foreigner. Nevertheless, the judge declared Bernardo a Spaniard and allowed
him to remain in Spanish America.
Similar discussions took place in other Spanish American enclaves. In 1749
in Buenos Aires, Fernando Arentavegaray attempted to refute allegations that
he was French. He presented three witnesses who attested that they had met
him in Cdiz and that they had always held him (lo han tenido y tienen) to be a
native of either Navarre or Vizcaya. The witnesses also stated that they had no
doubt that he was a Spaniard (espaol ), which is why the House of Trade
116 Naturaleza: Spanish America

allowed him to sail to Spanish America in the rst place. In order to avoid
further complications, the representative of the local merchant community
opted to consider Fernando a native and to allow him to stay in the city.
The nature of the hearing granted to those included on expulsion roll was
unclear. According to the merchant guild, these hearings were administrative
and not judicial. They were granted by way of grace, and the authorities
were not legally required to hold them. This implied that individuals wishing
to contest their classication had no right to due process: they had no right to
be heard, to see the proofs against them, or to claim legal exceptions. Most
litigants, realizing the fragility of their situation, limited their arguments to
proving their nativeness or asking for mercy. Only a few litigants were willing
to confront the guild on these issues. In 1723, Bernardo Coghen y Montefro
refused to defend himself against merchant allegations that he was a foreigner
because, according to him, the merchant guild was not a party to the discus-
sion. Even if it were, the guildrather than hecarried the burden of proof.
Pedro Juan de Ripa adopted a similar line of defense. As he had already proved
his nativeness in the House of Trade, he argued that the merchant guild had
neither the authority nor the cause to force him to prove his status again. In
1764, Francisco Carte y Linze also complained against the practice of placing
the burden of proof on those accused of foreignness: This process attempts to
distinguish foreigners from natives, which cannot be done without proof and
the case cannot be decided according to the opinion of the guild only because
the court had committed errors in the list and included in them many that are
not foreigners. Accordingly, the information supplied by the merchant
guild should be treated as an accusation the guild had to prove rather than one
requiring the so-called foreigner to demonstrate his nativeness.

Spanish American practices were both similar to and different from
Castilian traditions. On both sides of the Atlantic, integration, which was
veried by presumptions, was the main criterion for the conversion of for-
eigners into natives. Also similar was the confrontation between the king and
the community, with the role of the community represented in Spanish Amer-
ica mainly by merchants and the merchant association. This confrontation
involved the questions of whether the community was natural or articial, and
whether its constitution depended on the king or on organic processes of
integration and convergence. Last but not least, in Spanish America as in
Spain, late eighteenth-century discussants expressed a growing frustration
with the presumption regime, which allowed foreigners either to obtain a
Naturaleza: Spanish America 117

status that they did not deserve (in Spanish America), or to act alternatively as
foreigners and natives (in Spain). As a result of these perceptions, demands
were made on both sides of the ocean for the adoption of a clearer system that
would depend on formal declarations. In Spain, this led to the adoption of a
regime that rst codied the different ways people could become natives, and
then allowed foreigners to choose their own status. In Spanish America, the
same demand produced a contrary result. It rst justied the suppression of
naturalization by prescription and the adoption of a regime of naturalization
by formal declaration. It then required that authorities deciding on the natu-
ralization of foreigners go beyond the verication of facts to interpret their
true meaning.
If similarities were important, so were differences. Whereas in Castile the
evolution of nativeness and foreignness was tied mainly to ofce holding and
to debates concerning the sovereignty of the king and the structure of the
community, in Spanish America this process was closely related to mercantile
interests and mercantile agency. These interests and agency were responsible
for the legal modications introduced in the seventeenth and eighteenth cen-
turies. Yet, although in 1608 naturalization by integration (prescription) was
banned, local communities, the authorities, and even the merchants them-
selves continued to tolerate the presence of integrated foreigners. At times,
these foreigners were allowed to remain in the jurisdiction because they were
willing to pay fees (composicin). Yet on most occasions, foreigners were
simply left alone. Foreigners were most likely to be persecuted when they were
wealthy merchants or when their engagement in the Spanish American trade
seemed unfavorable to the ambitions of individual merchants or the guilds. In
these cases, the distinction between natives and foreigners suddenly became
meaningful. The distinction between true natives and other natives also be-
came very important because it allowed the merchants to claim that those
naturalized in Castile were not necessarily naturalized in Spanish America and
it lay basis to the claim that old natives should always be preferred to new
(naturalized) natives. Merchants and mercantile agency were thus crucial in
the identication and expulsion of foreigners. People were classied as for-
eigners even when they were true natives and their inclusion in the list de-
pended more on their wealth and the state of their affairs than it did on their
alienness. Indeed, in Spanish America more than in Spain, the link between
conict or potential conict on one hand, and status verication on the other,
was extremely clear: there was a direct relationship between those ghting to
exclude foreigners and those beneting from this exclusion. Under these cir-
cumstances, the monopolist merchants came up with new ideas on how to
exclude people; those singled out for exclusion responded by defending their
118 Naturaleza: Spanish America

rights. This conversation, often taking place between neighbors and competi-
tors, lasted for two hundred years. It repeatedly utilized a discourse of the
natural love of patria, and it frequently questioned the ability of natives to
trust foreigners. It was in this nexus between natural love (obtained at birth
and reinforced by descent) and elected love (arising from the decision to inte-
grate in a new community), between natural inclination (birth) and choice
(immigration), that Spanish American debates were carried out. In Spanish
America more than in Spain, the right of people to choose their community
was reafrmed at the same time it was repeatedly questioned.

The Other: Conversos, Gypsies,

Foreign Catholics, and Foreign Vassals

My hypothesis as developed in the preceding chapters suggests that the

community of Spanish natives in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries was
a highly complex social and legal construction, based not on cultural or lin-
guistic traits nor principally dependent on birth. Instead, it was founded on the
assumption that people who wanted to live together and who were willing to
commit themselves permanently to the community had the right to consider
themselves members, both as citizens (vecinos) and as natives (naturales). This
organic community depended on natural processes of integration and was
limited in only two respects. First, in order to be integrated, candidates had to
be Catholics. Second, candidates were judged not solely by their individual
behavior, but also by their inclusion in certain social groups.
There were two reasons why Catholicism was a condition for membership.
From a practical point of view, under normal circumstances and with very few
exceptions, from the late fteenth and certainly in the sixteenth century, only
Catholics could live permanently on Spanish soil. This meant that only Catho-
lics could achieve the integration needed to become citizens or natives. From a
more substantial point of view, the community was perceived, rst and fore-
most, as an association of people who wanted to live together, and member-
ship in it implied the willingness to submit to a common regime. This regime
was based on an agreement on a few basic principles that could be achieved

120 The Other

with foreign and nonvassal Catholics, but that was practically impossible to
achieve in the cases of heretic Christians (Protestants) and non-Christians.
As I will argue in this chapter, the restriction of membership in local com-
munities and in the community of the kingdom to Catholics alone did not
mean that the Spanish community was dened only by reference to religion as
historians have maintained. Although Catholicism dened many of the laws
governing the behavior of Spaniards, and although it embodied in certain
ways the constitution of the Spanish community and state, Catholicism does
not explain the appearance of both community and state. The cases of foreign
Catholics and converso Jews living in Majorca (Chuetas), which I review in
this chapter, demonstrate that Catholicism was indeed essential to the accep-
tance of individuals into the community. It was, however, insufcient.
The second factor that limited natural processes of integration was the idea
that individuals existed as part of groups. Individuals were trusted because
they behaved in certain ways that were acknowledged by the authorities or by
community members. Belief in a persons intentions and trusting in their loy-
alty could depend on individual circumstances, yet, on occasion, belief and
trust depended on group afliation. The belief that natives were naturally
disposed to favor the community of their birth is an example of this practice
(chapter 2). Another example is the treatment accorded merchants or con-
tracted professionals whose residence could not sufciently prove their inten-
tion to integrate into the community (chapters 2 and 5). Although the impor-
tance of membership in a group was admitted in these cases, in other cases
authorities and litigants treated individuals as components of groups yet de-
nied they were doing so. Such was the case of settled Gypsies and converso
Jews living in eighteenth-century Majorca (Chuetas) who were rejected as
citizens and natives by invoking their individual behavior when, in fact, their
behavior was not considered individually but instead was constructed by ref-
erence to their membership in a group whose constituents, it was well
known, behaved in certain ways. The Gypsies, born and raised in Spain, were
classied as foreigners or semiforeigners because by denition they were not
integrated in local communities. Gypsies who were citizens of local commu-
nities found it hard, not to say impossible, to demonstrate that they were
Spaniards. The same was true of Majorcan converso Jews. Because they were
Chueta, individuals belonging to this group were stigmatized as heretics and
were accused of maintaining practices that rejected all association with the
local community.
Through the Gypsies and the Chuetas we can also examine the degree to
which integration in a local community was essential to the classication of
people as Spaniards and foreigners. The importance of integration is further
The Other 121

demonstrated by examining cases involving the status of foreign vassals of the

Spanish king, which clarify the difference between a community of vassals and
a community of natives, two terms that in the historiography traditionally
were associated with one another. Together, the cases I review in this chapter
(foreign Catholics, foreign vassals, converso Jews, and Gypsies) reafrm the
conclusion that the community of Spanish natives was dened by reference to
religion, on one hand, and integration, on the other. They also show that
vassalage was a consequence, rather than a cause, of both. Lastly, they demon-
strate how a discourse focused on integration was used to exclude people,
especially on the basis of their being drawn from marginal groups.

Early modern Spaniards envisioned themselves rst and foremost as
Christians. This vision found expression in the adoption of Catholicism as a
political theme by kings who called themselves Catholic, a label carried by
all Spanish kings beginning with Ferdinand and Isabel in the fteenth century.
The Spanish crown instituted the protection of the true faith as a social
idealas expressed by the reconquest and the military ordersand fought to
preserve and augment the Catholic world. The importance of Catholicism to
the construction of Spain justied the persecution of religious minorities and
the rejection of heretics. For early modern Spaniards, Catholicism was a cul-
ture and an identity: Religion is the tie of human society, and it sanctions and
sancties the alliances, the contracts, and even the society itself. Religion
supplied Spaniards with a moral code, a prescription for behavior, and a key to
understanding the world. These codes, behaviors, and understandings were
shared with Catholics outside Spain and thus allowed Spaniards to feel con-
nected to a wider community. Spaniards frequently asserted that apparent
cultural, linguistic, and behavioral differences between themselves and foreign
Catholics were inconsequential. What mattered was not what separated Cath-
olics from one another, but what united them. Church institutions encour-
aged the creation of this pan-Christian community and supplied a common
patria (the city of God), a common structure (the church), and a common
bureaucracy (clergy and orders).
The fact that the community of Spanish natives was by denition a Catholic
community was rarely discussed. It was so obvious to contemporaries and so
consensual in nature that there was no need to spell it out. Protestants could
not reside in Spain or Spanish America unless special privileges allowed it, and
in these cases they were tolerated rather than integrated. No matter how long
they resided in the community, they were external and their presence was
122 The Other

deemed temporary. The integration of non-Christians was impossible. It was

generally assumed that, after the expulsion of Jews at the end of the fteenth
century and of the Moors in the beginning of the seventeenth century, only
Christians could live on Spanish soil. This understanding was so socially em-
bedded that the Catholicism of natives was mentioned only as an axiom.
Sevilles merchant guild employed the qualication of Catholicism in the
1720s to argue that not all sons of all foreigners were natives (chapter 5). The
most obvious and necessary disqualication for nativeness was to be the son of
a heretic, Jew, or Muslim, who, even if born in Spain, could never be consid-
ered Spanish. This argument was used to demonstrate that important excep-
tions must be made to the rule allowing all sons of all foreigners to attain the
status of natives.
Although eighteenth-century discussants recognized the important com-
monalties they shared with foreign Catholics, they nevertheless asserted that
there was a fundamental difference between a community of faith and a politi-
cal community. Alien Catholics, they argued, were the quintessential for-
eigners in Spain and Spanish America. Although they were the only people
who could become members of municipal communities and, by extension,
natives, their inclusion was not automatic. Instead it depended on the usual
tests, as described in chapters 2 through 5.
Assimilation between natives and Catholics was reserved to special cases.
The Siete Partidas determined that conversion was one of the methods by
which foreigners could obtain their naturalization. This idea, that non-
Catholic foreigners could become Catholics and natives at the same time and
by virtue of a single act, was also included in the 1716 decree that distin-
guished transients from integrated foreigners (chapter 4). In both instances, it
was reasoned that conversion could produce nativeness because it was a form
of birth. Indeed, conversion designated a spiritual rebirth that was more im-
portant than the biological birth. Despite these afrmations, in most cases,
rather than constituting people as natives, conversion simply removed a signif-
icant legal impediment for naturalization. It allowed people who already re-
sided on Spanish territory and who were practicallyalthough not theoreti-
callyintegrated into the community to be recognized as both citizens and
natives. This idea that conversion was not an independent mechanism of natu-
ralization, but was instead a nal factor in the complete integration of individ-
uals already present in the community was clear in the documents I consulted.
These documents meticulously recorded the circumstances in which new con-
verts lived. Rather than simply stating their conversion, they analyzed their
insertion in the community. For example, in 1782, the royal council declared
that Samuel Manning was a native of Spain because he had resided in Bar-
The Other 123

celona for thirty-three years and because he had converted to Catholicism in

1765, married a Spaniard, and was the father of several children. In 1803, a
foreign convert residing in Santa Fe (present-day Argentina) received a similar
treatment. In reviewing his case, the local authorities specied that this for-
eigner was educated in a convent and than converted to Catholicism. He was
hard working and truly acted as a Catholic, attending mass daily. They
openly suggested that his conversion to Catholicism was motivated by his
wish to live among Spaniards, a life that was impossible without embracing
the faith: he reconciled with the church in order to live among us . . . and if he
will return to his [original] land, he will be rejected. From the authorities
point of view, conversion constituted a legal presumption. It proved that the
foreigner wished to integrate into the community, and it guaranteed his inten-
tion to remain permanently because, given his conversion, he could no longer
return to his native land. Indeed, even in cases of conversion and despite the
wording of the laws, candidates were still assessed across the range of the
usual tests of integration.
Catholicism and the opportunity to achieve nativeness were also closely
associated in cases of persecuted Catholics, who were invited to Spain, and
promised the status and treatment of natives, by the royal authorities. In 1701,
1703, and 1734 such orders were issued for the reception of Catholics from
England, Ireland, and the Netherlands. These Catholics could be granted nat-
uralization as soon as they arrived in Spain. Privileged over all other for-
eigners, whose naturalization was conditioned by integration, they merely had
to present a copy of their baptismal record to be recognized as natives. The
preferential treatment they received was attributed to their suffering religious
persecution. This suffering was mentioned in legal and administrative records,
but it was also invoked by the immigrants themselves. Requesting permission
to remain in Spain and to achieve recognition as Spaniards, these individuals
testied that they immigrated to Spanish territories in order to practice their
religion freely. Martn de Liane was a clergymen who had preached in Ireland
when, experiencing persecution by heretics, he returned to Spain. In 1763,
Ignacio Vereux claimed that he had decided to live in Spain once he found
himself distanced from the danger from which he escaped and had obtained
the safeness and tranquility in his Christian profession, enjoying these privi-
leges for the ten years in which he had lived among Spaniards and in their
lands. He also specied in a second petition that in addition, religion and
natural law should favor a person who is a Catholic, but especially one who
since he was young has been struggling to avoid contamination by the dif-
ferent heretic sects to which he was exposed in a kingdom and nation which
are Protestants.
124 The Other

Some petitioners suggested that their Catholic faith made them immediate
members of the Spanish community because the Spanish community was rst
and foremost a community of faith. Accordingly, the laws that declared them
natives of Spain simply recognized their previously existing condition as
natives by virtue of Catholicism. As a result, they were true and original
natives, rather than naturalized foreigners, which meant that they should be
able to immigrate and trade in Spanish America (chapter 5) and not be re-
quired to choose status as transient or integrated citizen foreigners (chapter 4).
The Spanish authorities, courts, and merchant guilds rejected these claims.
They asserted that persecuted Catholics were naturalized in Spain because
Spain in Europe wished to guarantee that Catholics could freely practice their
religion; however, this naturalization did not make them ascribed members of
the community. Persecuted Catholics who wanted to immigrate and trade in
Spanish America needed a Spanish America naturalization letter and, if they
wished to continue their residence in Spain, they had to choose whether they
wanted to be treated as integrated or transient foreigners.
Although Catholicism alone was not sufcient to turn foreigners into na-
tives, not adhering to this faith could bar people (who otherwise would be
considered natives) from integrating into the community. One example is the
status of converso Jews living in Majorca. In the 1770s members of this group,
also called Chuetas or de la calle (of the street) addressed the royal council in
Madrid and requested an end to their isolation and discrimination. Accord-
ing to their plea, they were excluded from most ofces and occupations, hon-
ors, and privileges enjoyed by all loyal vassals and native Spaniards. This
discrimination was motivated by their classication as Chuetas, a classica-
tion that alluded to their Jewish origin. The Chuetas insisted that they had been
loyal vassals of the king and good Christians since 1435, the year their fore-
fathers converted to Catholicism. As had other conversos before them, they
argued that postconversion discrimination must cease. Humanity in its en-
tirety descended from either Jews or Gentiles, and many Spaniards were of
Jewish origin, making it unclear why the Chueta should be treated differ-
ently. Spain had to encourage conversion, and there was no better encourage-
ment than the promise of equality. The Chuetas also asked the king to recog-
nize that they were faithful to the patria, useful to the state, good citizens, and
exemplary in their conduct. In short, as natives of the land and vassals of the
king, they were true members of the community and merited equal treatment.
Asked to give their opinion on this petition, the authorities of Majorca
expressed their opposition and concern. Although the local royal court (au-
diencia) could not justify the discrimination of the Chueta on legal grounds, it
nevertheless explained that anti-Jewish legislation dating from the preconver-
sion period (thirteenth and fourteenth centuries) could be applied in this case if
The Other 125

Jewishness were interpreted as a category dening descent and not religious

belief. Discrimination was also legally permitted by the rules of individual
guilds, which used limpieza de sangre categories to exclude those of Jewish
descendant from membership. These rules were a practical necessity. Experi-
ence demonstrated that mixing Chuetas with pure-blooded Christians in a
single professional association was disruptive. Those of pure blood resented
the presence of the Chuetas, and the Chuetas formed alliances among them-
selves that dominated the work of these associations. Other practices, such as
their exclusion from ofce holding and confraternity membership, and the
unwillingness of Spanish Catholics to intermarry with them, were based on
the general opinion that many Chuetas still secretly practiced Judaism. This
opinion was conrmed when on several occasions individual Chuetas were
condemned by the local inquisition as crypto-Jews ( judaizantes). The royal
court also argued that the Chuetas disbelief was hereditary, and that it was
acquired through descent. Thus, the Chuetas were substantially different from
other converts and could never become true members of the community. The
court also held that, even if the Chuetas were right and the discrimination was
unjust and illegal, its practice must nevertheless continue. The redemption of
some 300 Chueta families was not important enough to justify offending the
perceptions and sensibilities of the 30,000 families living in Majorca. The
court also resented the allegation that most Spaniards descended from Jews
and called it an audacious folly.
The city council of Majorca and the representatives of the kingdom soon
followed suit. They stated that they could not trust the Chueta, either re-
ligiously or socially. Jewishness, they argued, was a genetic, not a religious,
trait. The only way to guarantee the good behavior and usefulness of the
Chueta was by exercising control over them. The Chuetas were not loyal
because they loved the king and the state, but because they feared retribution
or because their relation to the community was useful to them in some way or
the other. Their character and nature were unalterable. Despite efforts to
change them, and despite their apparent conversion, the Chuetas persisted in
their offensive ways, accustomed to lying and permitted by their religion of
descent to break their oath. It would be humiliating to all other vassals, even
the most miserable among them, if the Chueta were granted equality. Such a
grant would add nothing to the state because there were already sufcient
numbers of people who loved the state and were willing to serve it. Last but
not least, discrimination against conversos was practiced everywhere in Spain,
but only the Chuetas, because of their particular audacity and disloyalty,
dared to challenge it.
The representative of royal interests ( scal ) in the Council of Castile, Pedro
Rodrguez Campomanes, was appalled when he received the facts of this
126 The Other

case. Declaring that both legislation and legal and political theory favored
the petition of the Chuetas, he also explained that all states must strive to unify
their inhabitants and mould them into a single body. In this case, nothing
stood in the way of unication except the aversion of the inhabitants of Ma-
jorca for the Chuetas. This aversion was bad for the state and completely
unjust; it must be immediately reversed. Suspecting that his recommendation
would be bitterly resented, Rodrguez Campomanes suggested a second round
of consultations with the authorities of Majorca. In response to his invitation,
the authorities sent different pleas to Madrid in the following months. The
ecclesiastical chapter and the university requested that the monarch place the
well-being of the local community above that of the Chuetas. They insisted
that the Chuetas were not true Christians and that they could not be trusted.
They also personally attacked the six deputies appointed by the Chuetas to
represent them in Madrid, claiming they were all crypto-Jews.
The pleas for continued discrimination fell on deaf ears. In 1775, Rodrguez
Campomanes claried once again that the discrimination of the Chuetas was
illegal and unjust. Descent was irrelevant to the classication of royal sub-
jects as good or bad: guilt could not be inherited, and individuals could
not be stigmatized by their family genealogy. The discrimination of the Chue-
tas severely obstructed the social, economic, and political progress of Majorca
and had to be remedied for the islands sake. The Council of Castile agreed
with this analysis. In 1778, it condemned the discrimination of the Chuetas as
contradictory to reason, to evangelical and political law and to the well-being
of the state and the city of Palma. It reprimanded the local authorities for
having adhered to their practice for such a long time and for having supported
the popular misjudgment instead of correcting it.
Only two ministers voted against this decision. They did not deny its legal
foundation, but they expressed concern about its political consequences.
Treating the Chuetas as original Christians (cristianos originarios) could
light a violent re and a nonextinguishable hate. This hate, which was
legally unjustiable, was nevertheless socially understandable. The Chuetas
promoted it by continuing their heretic practices and by mocking Christianity
and Christian dogma, and also by their exclusionary social practices. They
separated themselves from the rest of society and acted as an independent
corporate body. Their transformation into truly good and useful citizens and
into true natives could be achieved only by breaking their internal solidarity
and by forcibly integrating them into mainstream society. The two ministers
suggested that the Chuetas should be resettled all over Spain, allowing a maxi-
mum of two families per community. They further stated that, once the Chue-
tas fully integrated into local communities, their bad name would automati-
cally die out and their problem would be solved.
The Other 127

An inverse plan was elaborated by the representative of royal interests ( s-

cal ) in the royal court (audiencia ) of Majorca. Admitting that the Chuetas
were often loyal and benecial subjects of the crown, the representative sug-
gested transferring them in bulk to Minorca, an island recently freed of En-
glish occupation and practically uninhabited. Adopting a separate but
equal solution, he expressed his opinion that in Minorca the Chuetas could
nally be given equality without it causing a major social upheaval. Passing
over these suggestions, the king agreed with the majority opinion. Granting
that the Chueta were indeed natives, he rst ordered that they were free to
reside where they wanted (1782). He then allowed them to join the navy and
to be employed in different occupations, as well as in different public ofces
(1785 and 1788). In order to diminish local opposition, the king instructed the
authorities to act gradually and to employ moderate means.
The parties to the debate never denied that the Chuetas were born in Spain
nor that they continued to reside in Spain, where they wished to remain per-
manently. But while the royal authorities in Madrid agreed that birth and
permanent residence justied treating people as natives, the protesters from
Majorca rejected these claims. According to them, the participation of the
Chuetas in the community of natives was not complete because their Catholi-
cism was not sincere and because socially they were not truly integrated.
In order to demonstrate the insufcient Catholic faith of the Chuetas, the
authorities of Majorca invoked considerations regarding genetic determinism
and inquisitorial records. They claimed that, according to the rst, there was
something inherent in the group that did not allow its individual members to
convert to Catholicism. Although the nature of this thing was unclear in the
allegations, clarication was not truly required. The claim that Jews were
abnormal converts whose conversion was never complete dated from the
Middle Ages. It formed part of a traditional discourse about converso integra-
tion in Spain that consistently questioned whether true conversion was possi-
ble at all. This discourse portrayed Jewishness not only as a faith, but also as
a cultural trait and a genealogical classication. It consequently determined
that Jews continued to be Jews even after they chose (or were forced) to
become Catholics. Genealogy thus conditioned the Chuetas to heresy; heresy
being a trait people could inherit. Yet Chuetas disbelief, the authorities in
Majorca claimed, was not only dependent on their genealogy: the conviction
of several Chuetas as crypto-Jews by the Inquisition offered hard proof of
these deterministic traits. The Chuetas were not only disposed to heresy by
descent, but they were also practicing heretics.
Whereas the different authorities in Majorca espoused the traditional dis-
course on conversion and heresy, and used it to argue that the Chuetas were
unworthy of the privileges of natives, the royal authorities in Madrid refused
128 The Other

to follow this path. Adopting a different approach, they admitted that some
Chuetas might indeed have failed to be good Christians, but they concluded
that the attitudes of the few should not incriminate the whole. Christian atti-
tudes were a question of fact that should be examined in each individual case,
and neither descent nor past conviction was a sufcient indication that all
Chuetas were invariably heretic. Even the two ministers who voted against the
majority opinion refused to surrender to genealogical determinism. Like their
colleagues in Madrid, they believed that, rather than condemned forever, the
Chuetas were correctable. Otherwise, there was no point in ensuring their
dispersal across Spain, no hope that, through integration, their problem
would be solved.
Possessing a defective faith was therefore the rst argument against the in-
clusion of the Chuetas in a community of natives, which theoretically included
only orthodox Catholics. Yet, besides their faith, the Chuetas were also re-
jected because of their internal solidarity ties and their subsequent isolation
from the rest of society. According to the allegations of the local authorities,
despite being born in the city and continuing to reside there, the Chuetas
were not truly integrated. Instead, they constituted a distinct group. They
threatened society not as individuals, but as members of a foreign entity.
Whenever admitted into guilds and associations, their union, wealth, and
industry soon dominated these organizations to the exclusion of other mem-
bers. The Chuetas were responsible for their own isolation. Society discrimi-
nated against them only to protect itself, and only in reaction to the Chuetas
exclusionary practices. This was the reason why the two dissenting ministers
proposed to solve the Chueta problem by forcing their integration into
Spanish society by dividing the group and sending them individually to differ-
ent local communities. This perception of the Chuetas as outsiders and for-
eigners was also accompanied by resentment. Constituting a separate group, it
was feared that, if granted the rights of natives, they would dominate society.
They were simply too successful, too rich, and too powerful.

The importance of integration and the indication that its absence made
people foreigners despite the fact that were born, raised, and resided in Span-
ish territories is especially clear in the case of the Gypsies. Anti-Gypsy legisla-
tion was common in Castile during most of the early modern period. As early
as 1499 and again in 1539, 1586, 1619, and 1633, Gypsies were ordered to
abandon their nomadic way of life and establish a permanent domicile.
From the late seventeenth century onward, Gypsies were also ordered to pre-
The Other 129

sent themselves periodically to the local authorities to register their names and
places of residence, as well as to give information about their families, occupa-
tions, and properties. A general expulsion of the Gypsies was decreed in
1695, and only Gypsies permanently residing in municipalities of at least 200
vecinos and occupied in farming activities were exempt. Local authorities
were charged with overseeing the implementation of these measures, and they
were ordered by the royal administration to conduct regular inspections of
Gypsy places of residence and to collect information about their activities.
Gypsies were not allowed to reside in separate neighborhoods, to use special
clothing, or to speak any language other than Spanish. Any Gypsy caught in a
group of three or more would be sentenced to death unless he denounced his
fellow kinsmen and their activities.
Similar orders were issued in 1717, 1726, 1738, 1745, 1746, 1749, 1783,
and 1784 and were applied throughout Spain. A list of places permitted for
Gypsy residence was elaborated in 1738 and extended in 1746. A ratio was set
according to which a single Gypsy family could be accommodated for each
one hundred (non-Gypsy) citizens (vecinos). Gypsies were also barred from
immigrating to Spanish America. Repeated orders demanded their immedi-
ate expulsion from that continent, alleging that their presence was detrimental
both to the effort to convert the Indians and to the general well-being. Their
potential harassment of the Indians and their possible collaboration with for-
eign nations against Spanish interests were considered especially dangerous.
There were other concerns as well, such as the Gypsys alleged vagrancy and
criminal way of life.
Why were Gypsies treated this way? According to the decrees, the aim was
to ensure that the Gypsies changed their way of life. They were to abandon
their vagrancy, as well as all traits that distinguished them from other mem-
bers of society, such as clothing and language. Instead of allowing them to
maintain their isolationwhich was viewed as self-inictedthese orders
would force them to integrate into local communities and to sever the ties that
connected them to one another. If they refused to do so, they would auto-
matically lose the right to remain in Spain. Gypsies who insisted on main-
taining a separate existence would be incarcerated, expelled, or even sen-
tenced to death.
Who were the Gypsies? According to the seventeenth- and eighteenth-
century anti-Gypsy legislation, there was no Gypsy nation, only the Gypsy
people. If there had ever been a Gypsy nation, either it did not reach the
Iberian peninsula, or its members were no longer there. Instead, in Castile
and in other parts of Spain, it was believed that Gypsiness was taken on
voluntarily by people who sought out a bad life (mal vivir). These people were
130 The Other

ordinary citizens. Born on the peninsula as vassals of the king, they neverthe-
less chose to behave in an antisocial and illegal manner.
The Gypsy community was thus a normal political community. Like
other contemporary political communities, its members had no natural, as-
cribed, or ethnic characteristics that compelled them to come together: Those
who are called and who identify themselves as Gypsies are not Gypsies by
origin or nature, nor do they proceed from any infected root. Instead,
membership in the Gypsy community depended on choice and on individual
adhesion. Paradoxically, anti-Gypsy legislation also appealed to fairness. It
ascertained that it was unfair that the Gypsies, who were an undistinguishable
segment of society, were allowed to adopt an antisocial behavior while other
members were required to remain obedient. It determined that because Gyp-
sies were natives, decency required that they should behave as natives and,
among other things, should pay taxes.
Constructing Gypsiness in this manner undermined societys role in stig-
matizing the members of the group. Gypsiness, the laws stated, was a self-
appropriated denomination. The identication, isolation, and discrimination
of the Gypsies were the sole responsibility of the members themselves. If and
when individual Gypsies stopped behaving as they did (a thing the decrees
wished to obtain), their Gypsiness would automatically disappear and they
would be integrated as full members of the community.
Despite its internal coherence, this denition of Gypsiness clashed with
reality. Eighteenth-century administrative correspondence and judicial rec-
ords continuously admitted this fact by making abundant reference to good
Gypsies, who were citizens of local communities. Were these people really
Gypsies? Should the restrictive measures be applied against them? What could
good Gypsies do if they wished to avoid prosecution? As the eighteenth
century drew to a close, two answers emerged. On one hand, people classied
as Gypsies could attempt to prove that, despite their initial classication, they
were ordinary natives. On the other, good Gypsies could claim that because
of their behavior and despite their Gypsiness, they were exempt from the anti-
Gypsy measures.
The reclassication of individuals initially identied as Gypsies was prac-
ticed, for example, in 1745, when several families from Jerez de la Frontera
claimed that by virtue of their citizenship (vecindad) and nativeness they were
ordinary Spaniards (espaoles). Their petition was backed by the local coun-
cil who declared thaton the basis of their occupation as agricultural la-
borers, their usefulness to the local society, their adherence to the general code
of dress, their use of Spanish, and their dissociation from other Gypsiesthey
should be classied as castellanos viejos (old Castilians) rather than as Gyp-
The Other 131

sies. Thus, people who acted as normal Spaniards and who showed no signs
of antisocial behavior were indeed Spaniards, or old Castilians, rather than
Gypsies. Similar afrmations were made in other cases. The Moreno family,
for example, had obtained recognition in 1709 that its members were cas-
tellanos viejos, given that they descended from a mixed union of old and new
Castilians, had a permanent domicile, were hard working, and paid taxes.
Nevertheless, under similar circumstances, less fortunate individuals failed to
obtain the desired declaration. In the 1790s, Baltazar Vargas and his family
attempted to establish a domicile in Madrid. When the city council refused to
admit them on the basis of their Gypsiness, they addressed the royal council
and requested a declaration that they were Castilians (castellanos) rather than
Gypsy ( gitanos). As all other Castilians, they were free to choose their place
of residence and citizenship (vecindad), and Madrid could not refuse to admit
them. According to their petition they were Castilian rather than Gypsies
because they were born to parents with domicile and citizenship in Orihuela
(kingdom of Valencia). They were agricultural laborers, born and raised in
that village, where their family had resided for many generations. They were
educated to be good people and were instructed in the mysteries of the
Catholic faith. They later moved to the city of Valencia, where they con-
tinued in the same vein, working the land and being useful members of
society. Always tied to a specic local community, they had no bad repu-
tation, and no one ever considered them Gypsies. In short, since they did
not behave as Gypsies, they should not be considered Gypsies. Their petition
was denied.
Similar decisions were reached in other cases where well-behaved Gypsies
were classied as Gypsies despite their exemplary lives. In many such cases, the
only concession made towards these people was to allow them, as good
Gypsies, to remain in the jurisdiction despite the prohibitions invoked by the
anti-Gypsy measures. Francisco Vargas was a quiet man who had lived in
Villafranca for more than thirty years and was one of two blacksmiths working
in the jurisdiction; he was allowed to stay in the settlement. Motivated by
similar considerations, Velz requested the intervention of the royal admin-
istration with regard to some seventeen Gypsy families whose members were
born and raised in the community. Motril and Cdiz expressed identical con-
cerns and also sought to enable certain good Gypsies to remain in their
territory. In all these cases, admitting that petitioners were indeed hard-
working and law-abiding members of society, both the royal administration
and the local authorities continued to consider them Gypsies. The royal admin-
istration was especially inexible, declaring that communities who wanted to
keep good Gypsies in their jurisdiction would be made responsible for their
132 The Other

behavior. Since it was their personal recommendation that allowed these Gyp-
sies to remain in the territory, they would be accountable for any mischief that
might result. Overwhelmed with the ood of petitions, the royal council set a
general rule: Gypsies who had resided in a community for more than ten years
could remain if the local authorities considered their presence benecial.
Why require a ten-year residence? Why allow Gypsies who had a permanent
domicile to remain in the jurisdiction? In spite of the ofcial discourse that
censured Gypsies for their behavior, customs, and linguistic habits, the most
essential point of contention between Gypsies and non-Gypsies was domicile-
establishment. Gypsies were considered dangerous and external to the
Spanish commonwealth because of their lack of permanent ties with local
communities. Eighteenth-century discussions stressed this point. They stipu-
late that all people must be tied to an identiable community, asserting that no
one can live on his or her own (chapter 2). They argued that local citizenship
was a condition for membership in the Castilian community and the kingdoms
of Spain and that local citizenship implied, by extension, nativeness (chapters
4 and 5). The conclusion that people who were not tied to local communities
such as Gypsieswere necessarily foreign to the community of Spanish
natives was thus immediate. The adoption of a ten-year residency rule demon-
strated this point. According to Castilian and eventually Spanish law, a ten-
year residence was the period required of foreigners before they could be
considered citizens and natives. Thus, as with all foreigners, Gypsies could be
considered natives and be allowed the rights of natives only after they had
resided in the community for a sufcient period.
The Gypsies themselves understood the direct relation between the absence
of domicile and foreignness. In their petitions to acquire the status of cas-
tellanos viejos many of them argued that citizenship and nativeness were the
same thing. They requested recognition as castellanos, even when they had
been born and had resided in other Iberian kingdoms. They also petitioned to
receive local citizenship letters (cartas de vecindad), assuming that once they
were recognized as citizens they would automatically be accepted as natives.
Local citizenship, they argued, was necessary in order to be included in the
constitutions, exemptions, and privileges of the natives of these kingdoms.
Indeed, obtaining citizenship was the only method by which they could guar-
antee their reception as natives rather than foreigners. People classied as
Gypsies also identied Gypsiness with foreignness: the name that they were
given as Gypsies was untrue, because in reality they were not Gypsies since
they were not foreigners. They argued that they were originals of the king-
doms and not of the Gypsy nation. These petitioners stressed that people
were either vecinos and naturales or they were Gypsies: those belonging to the
The Other 133

rst category could not belong to the second and vice versa. Foreign ob-
servers also held these perceptions, which were shared by the legislation, the
royal and local administrations, and the Gypsies themselves. For example, in
1749 the French consul in Cdiz argued that Spanish Gypsies could be consid-
ered ( peuvent tre regards) natives, but he asserted that they were usually not
included in this category as long as they remained vagabonds and practiced
their bad habits.
The idea that Gypsies were both ordinary (although badly behaved) natives
and foreigners persisted throughout the eighteenth century. This duality ex-
plained why well-behaved Gypsies were nevertheless considered Gypsies,
and why Gypsy residencelike all other foreign residencewas tolerated
rather than permitted. During this period, and consistent with the treatment
of other foreigners, Gypsies were identied by way of reputation. Common-
sense standardssuch as, if he associates with Gypsies then he must be a
Gypsywere very inuential. Confusion and cases of mistaken identity also
occurred. This confusion and the uncertainties that naturally arose from the
dependence on reputation led the local judges of Buenos Aires to conclude in
the late eighteenth century that it was impossible to determine with certainty
who was a Gypsy and who was not. Nevertheless, and as happened in the
cases of other foreigners, many people believed that Gypsies could be easily
distinguished from other Spaniards. In 1757, the local judge of Vera expressed
such a belief. He received information that several men with torn and dirty
clothes and dark complexions were seen in the jurisdiction. Assuming that
this description could t only a Gypsy, he then proceeded to look for them
(and indeed found them) in the house of a local Gypsy. Last but not least, like
other foreigners, persons assumed to be Gypsies carried the burden of proof if
they wanted to establish that they were either good Gypsies or not Gypsies
at all. Obtaining recognition as a non-Gypsy did not guarantee the same result
on another occasion. Suspicious individuals, even those who held certicates
attesting that they were castellanos viejos, were required to prove their status
each time an anti-Gypsy campaign was initiated.

Medieval legal thought in Castile distinguished between vassalage and
nativeness. Vassalage was a personal tie created by virtue of mutual consent.
It was based on a pact between the king and his vassals, and this pact could not
be unilaterally revoked. Nativeness, on the contrary, was a political tie that
subjected a person to a jurisdiction. This subjection could be created at birth
without the consent of the interested party, or it could be acquired later in a
134 The Other

variety of ways. Although nativeness, like vassalage, carried a series of mutual

obligations, it could, unlike vassalage, be abandoned unilaterally by a native
leaving the jurisdiction or by the king relinquishing his sovereignty over it. In
medieval Castile, vassalage was considered an alternative, not an obligation,
of all natives. The same was true with regard to nativeness. Vassals could
become natives if they wishedvassalage being one of the methods by which
nativeness could be acquiredbut they were not obliged to do so. People
living in medieval Castile could therefore be both natives and vassals, or
nonnative vassals, or natives who were not vassals, or neither natives nor
The distinction yet potential interrelation between vassalage and nativeness
persisted during the early modern period. Although vassalage was no longer
mentioned as a method for naturalization, as was the case in the Siete Partidas,
early modern conditions allowed the kings to transform their vassals into
natives by granting them letters of naturalization. In 1740, Carlos Satores
was naturalized because he was born in Milan while the city was under my
[the kings] legitimate domination, his father being . . . one of my most loyal
vassals and a native of the city. . . . When the said state was conquered by the
arms of Germany [1707] he refused to recognize another sovereign except me,
he left his homeland and, abandoning it, he came to Spain, where he estab-
lished a house in Cdiz and brought his family along with him. Francisco
Belcredi obtained the same privilege in 1708 because as a loyal vassal of his
majesty, he was exiled from that city [Milan] by the prince Eugenio . . . sacric-
ing his person, possessions, and properties because of the anger of the en-
emy. Pedro de la Mesta won the same favor: With the ardor of a faithful
vassal, since early age he served your royal person with all the delity neces-
sary in military troops in the kingdoms of Spain, in the campaigns of the years
6, 7, and 8 [17068, during the Spanish War of Succession], in the siege of
Barcelona, Lrida, Cartagena de Levante, and in other military actions that
were needed during these campaigns, risking his blood and life in order to
defend your rights and your banners.
The idea that vassals who served the king, especially in time of war were
worthy of naturalization was prominent in many eighteenth-century petitions
for naturalization. Some of these petitions argued not only that vassalage
justied a grant of naturalization, but that it should earn the requestor the
status of native. According to this view, all vassals were, by extension, natives
of all territories ruled by the king. Nicols Campe, a native of Sicily, argued as
much in 1775 when he attested that he was a native of the kingdoms of
Spain because the Spanish kingno longer in possession of this island
enumerated among his titles that of king of Sicily. Similarly, individuals born
The Other 135

in Malta also asserted that their island was reputed to be an aggregated part
of the crown of Aragon, and as a result they were natives of Spain. Luis
Melloni, born in Sardinia, suggested that having been a royal vassal, he was
not truly a foreigner. Instead, by virtue of a certain type of justice and old
memories and because he spoke Spanish, he should be assimilated as a Span-
iard. Natives of the Lowlands also participated in this debate. In the 1720s
they asserted that, as vassals who continuously served the king, they were
true natives of Spain ( propiamente naturales espaoles) rather than natu-
ralized foreigners. This meant that they did not need to naturalize if they
wished to immigrate and trade in Spanish America (chapter 5):
For various centuries they had been vassals of this crown and always won the
rst esteem among all subjects for the special appreciation that earlier kings
had for their country. History books would tell the merits that they had in
halting the violence of their princes, but on this occasion they must mention
the many services that they rendered to the crown in their country and the
only slightly inferior [services] that they had done since in Castile. Their zeal
and service were demonstrated clearly in the happy reign of your majesty,
with the contributions that they had given, as well as in their decision to
abandon their patria and their interests [and come to Spain]. So peaceful and
profound were their relationships with Spaniards, that they were never called
foreigners in this land, and the Spaniards always lived in Flanders as natives.

Although the king and his foreign vassals insisted that an immediate rela-
tionship existed between vassalage and nativeness, the local communities, the
parliament, the merchants, and some royal administrators disagreed. Accord-
ing to them, aliens could not be transformed into natives by royal decree, and
nativeness could not be established solely through ties with the king. Assert-
ing, time and again, that a community of allegiance consisting of all those
subject to the Spanish king and even foreigners subject to his rule did exist,
they nevertheless insisted that this community was not identical to the com-
munity of Spanish natives. The Spanish monarchy included many kingdoms
and was composed of different communities, each with their own constitu-
tions, laws, and natives. Membership in one kingdom did not automatically
produce membership in another. This was the situation as long as the various
kingdoms and holdings were under royal domain, and it was certainly true
after a holding was lost. As a result, natives of Sicily were deemed foreigners in
Spain even when their island was still under royal control, and they clearly
remained aliens after its secession. The fact that the monarch continued to
ceremoniously invoke among his titles that of king of Sicily was irrelevant to
the question. The only thing that mattered were the terms under which
each kingdom joined the monarchy. Kingdoms that were made an accessory
136 The Other

(accesoriamente) part of the Spanish monarchy lost their independent political

and legal structures, and their natives automatically became members of the
community of natives of Spain. Kingdoms that joined the union aquae prin-
cipaliter, maintaining their separate structures, also maintained their separate
body of natives, a body external and foreign to the Spanish community of
natives. This was not only the legal reality, it was also a just solution. Since
natives were people who agreed to live together, only those governed by the
same legal regime should be part of the same community of natives.
Although not all vassals of the king were natives of Spain, it was clear that
by the early modern period all natives of Spain had to be royal vassals. This
fact was so obvious and so consensual that, as with the notion that all Span-
iards were Catholics, it was never openly discussed. During this period, and
independent of the reason for which it was obtained, naturalization was al-
ways presented as an instance in which a foreigner became a vassal. Whether
vassalage was sufcient to attain nativenessas the king arguedor whether
integration in the community was also requiredas the local communities,
the parliament, and the merchants maintainedwhen people became natives,
they also established a relationship with the king. Letters of naturalization
clearly stipulated it, as they attested that in response to certain justiable
causes the king was willing to admit foreigners as vassals and to treat them as
natives. Naturalization by integration indirectly implied this relationship, as
those naturalized by integration also became, in consequence, royal vassals.
The idea that people living in Spain were tied to both the community and the
king clearly emerged in the late eighteenth century, when several decrees stipu-
lated that integrated foreigners had to take an oath of allegiance to the mon-
arch on one hand, and to pledge obedience to the laws and traditions of Spain
on the other (chapter 4). Foreigners taking this oath were often confused
about the relationships they established as a result. They frequently used the
terms native and vassal as synonyms. They declared themselves Span-
iards (espaol ) or expressed their desire to be included in the class of Span-
ish nationals (clase de tal nacional espaol ). They asserted that they wished
to be recognized as vassals of the crown, and they petitioned for inclusion
with those who were domiciled and vassals or with citizens of the city and
natives of these kingdoms. Some of them expressed a desire to enter under
Spanish protection and ag (bajo la proteccin y bandera de Espaa). Their
confusion was at times paired with that of contemporary Spaniards who at-
tempted to classify them. Whereby most people attested that integrated for-
eigners were indeed natives, some argued that they were nonnative vassals.
They claimed that the community into which these foreigners integrated was
not the Spanish community, but the community of vassals. According to
The Other 137

this version, by xing their domicile in Spain foreigners subjected themselves

to the king, but they did not necessarily tie themselves to the Spanish commu-
nity. The royal administration and courts rejected these claims. They insisted
on the nativeness of integrated foreigners and explained that by becoming
natives, these foreigners also took on the responsibilities of vassalage.
The distinction between vassals and natives, which provoked confronta-
tions between the king, local communities, and merchants, was especially
contentious in cases involving natives who lived in territories that were no
longer in the royal domain. Although it was clear that natives who willfully
abandoned the kingdom became foreigners, it was uncertain whether living
under foreign occupation and being subjected to a foreign monarch justied
the exclusion of people from the community of Spanish natives. Such a debate
occurred over the status of Lower Navarres who, during the eighteenth cen-
tury, defended their status as natives against the opposition of the monopolist
merchants, who classied them as foreigners naturalized in Spain who re-
mained aliens in Spanish America. Lower Navarres were natives of a territory
that had theoretically been under Castilian domination since 1512 (see chap-
ter 5). Its seizure by France in 1607 was ofcially recognized by Spain in 1659.
Ten years later the Spanish king declared Lower Navarres natives of Castile.
Nevertheless, the status of Lower Navarres continued to be debated in the
following years. In question was the correct interpretation of the decree that
declared them natives: was it an act of collective naturalization or did it simply
acknowledge that they had always been natives? Favoring the second inter-
pretation, which would allow them to immigrate and to trade in the New
World, Lower Navarres based their argument on their vassalage. They as-
serted that the Catholic kings never renounced their rights in Lower Navarre,
where they continued to perform positive acts of domination, such as tax
collection. Because the monarchs were owners of their dominions and the
best authors of the boundaries of their crown, it was up to them to decide
whether to acknowledge Lower Navarres as vassals and natives. Furthermore,
individuals whose families had belonged to the community for more than two
hundred years could not suddenly be stripped of their rights and classied as
foreigners only because of a foreign conquest that they were powerless to
Natives of Rossellon, a Catalan region partially under French dominion
since 1659, voiced similar claims. As late as 1782 some of them argued that
they are virtually taken to be equal to the natives of Spain, or included under
the dominion of this crown. Nevertheless, the courts, royal ofcials, and the
merchant guilds continued in their refusal to equate vassalage with nativeness.
They agreed that these people might still be royal vassalsif they maintained
138 The Other

their allegiance to the king and if he continued to act as their sovereignyet

they insisted that once territories changed hands, so did the membership status
of their inhabitants. In short, Lower Navarres and natives of Rossellon were
vassals of the king, but they were no longer natives of Spain.
There was at least one case where these assertions were rebuffed and where
the distinction between vassals and natives was somewhat blurred. Analyzing
in the 1770s the status of natives of Minorca (ceded to Britain in 1713), the
representative of royal interests ( scal ) in the Council of Castile was willing to
consider them original Spaniards precisely because they were still vassals of
the king. Expressing the view that they remained loyal to the kinghaving
refused to recognize the foreign monarch as their own or to pay him taxeshe
determined that, by virtue of vassalage, they were also natives.
This willingness to admit natives of Minorca as natives of Spain was par-
tially explained by religious considerations. England was a Protestant power.
As a result, if natives of Minorca were not recognized as Spaniards, they would
have no community where they could freely practice their creed. This reason-
ing was sufcient to admit them to the Spanish community. After all, Spain
allowed complete foreigners seeking freedom from religious persecution to
integrate into the community; it should certainly do the same with vassals who
were now under the domination of a non-Catholic power. Implied in these
observations was the assumption that natives of Minorca had to choose one of
two options. Either they remained in their island and accepted foreign domi-
nation, foreign vassalage, and membership in a foreign community, or they
left their island and established themselves in Spain. Only in the second case
would they be recognized as original natives and their insertion in the commu-
nity be guaranteed.
The relation between vassalage and nativeness was examined again in the
late eighteenth century when the status of individuals originating in Colonia
de Sacramento (present-day Uruguay) was discussed. Colonia had been estab-
lished at the end of the seventeenth century as a Portuguese outpost in an area
where both Iberian crowns claimed jurisdiction. Strategically located and
serving as an important enclave for contraband trade, Spaniards saw the city
as a potential threat to their political and mercantile domination of Upper
Peru. Conquered by Spanish forces but returned to Portugal on several occa-
sions, Colonia was nally ceded to Spain in 1777. What was to become of the
Portuguese living there at the time of its secession? The terms of surrender
stipulated that residents of Colonia willing to swear allegiance to the Spanish
banner and king could remain in the settlement or immigrate to Buenos Aires.
Were they then transformed into vassals of the king or into members of the
Spanish community of natives?
The Other 139

This question became important in later years when these people attempted
to hold ofces reserved to natives, or when they sought the right to reside and
to trade in Spanish America. Natives of Colonia could be considered natives of
Spain by virtue of conquest if their homeland was inserted into Spain and
subjected to the same rights and obligations as other Spanish territories. They
could be considered natives by integration and or by reputation if in the years
following the annexation they acted as natives and were accepted as natives.
But at the same time, they could be considered foreigners if the normal Spanish
American laws were applied. These stipulated that in Spanish America people
could be naturalized only by receiving a formal naturalization letter. In this
case, natives of Colonia would be vassals of the king but not natives of Spain.
Although the authorities invoked the distinction between vassalage and
nativeness and examined the ways these people could be transformed into
natives, the natives of Colonia adopted a different approach. They explained
that their association with Spain was voluntary. Territorial conquest, they
claimed, only implied domain over land. It allowed those living on the land to
chose whether to remain in their old society or to become members of the new
one: No one is forced to subject himself to more than what he had consented,
and a citizen who agreed in a free and independent state to live in a society,
can, if this society changes its nature and submits to a foreign dominion,
abandon it . . . since submission to a foreign dominion ends the social ties and
the obligation that one has with society. In one word, one remains wholly and
naturally free to chose and submit to the empire and domination that he
wishes. Just as natives of Spain who remained in territories ceded to Portugal
implicitly accepted their new condition as Portuguese and freely chose to sever
ties with their community of origin, so did the Portuguese who, of their own
will, stayed in territories ceded to Spain. Indeed, nativeness depended on
choice. It consisted of the willingness to love the community, and people could
choose whether to love one community or another. The theoretical debate
persisted while practical solutions prevailed. The natives of Colonia easily
obtained letters of naturalization in both Spain and Spanish America and were
rarely asked to fulll any requirement aside from submitting a petition.

Religion or vassalage alone were insufcient to transform foreigners into
natives. Although by the early modern period both became fundamental char-
acteristics of all Spaniards, in was nevertheless clear that they were not identi-
cal to nativeness. What made people natives was their integration in the com-
munity. This community had a common faith and a common monarch. Yet
140 The Other

nativeness was based on social integration, which people achieved by estab-

lishing a domicile and taking part in the life of a specic local community.
Religion and vassalage also differed from one another because Catholicism
was a condition for nativeness, while vassalage was the result of nativeness.
The establishment of Catholicism and integration as conditions for native-
ness justied questioning the status of people who were suspected of lacking
an authentic Catholic faith or who did not appear to tie themselves genuinely,
and permanently, to a local community. Individuals who fell under these sus-
picions could be rejected as foreigners. The use of a civic discourse that exam-
ined the citizenship and nativeness of individuals for the purpose of excluding
both the Chuetas and the Gypsies demonstrated that a process focused on
integration and elaborated in order to construct communities could conversely
be used to achieve social enclosure. Discussions concerning the Chuetas and
the Gypsies also proved that, despite emphasis on intentions, which were
particular to each individual, people were classied by reference to their mem-
bership in groups. This classication reasoned that persons who belonged to
certain groups had unalterable ways of being. Familiarity with these ways of
being allowed the rest of society to understand the activities of the suspect
group in a certain way and to attribute to them a certain meaning. Because of
these preconceptions, individual Chuetas and Gypsies, however good or
wise, could hardly prove that their intentions were different.

The Crisis of an Empire

In 1808, the Iberian peninsula was invaded by French troops. The Span-
ish king was forced to abdicate in favor of Napoleon, who instituted his
brother Joseph as the new monarch of Spain. Many Spaniards refused to
recognize Joseph as their king and maintained allegiance to Fernando, the cap-
tive monarch. Adopting early modern contractualist theories to nineteenth-
century conditions, they claimed that in Fernandos absence sovereignty re-
turned to the people and was now to be exercised by local assemblies
( juntas), established throughout Spain and Spanish America. After a short
period of anarchy, during which each junta acted on its own, claimed sov-
ereignty, and refused to cooperate with the other juntas, in late 1808 the juntas
were joined in a single institution, the Junta Central. This was an incomplete
solution to the crisis of government: it was unclear whether the central junta
spoke for the kingdoms of Spain or whether it was only an assembly of juntas
with no sovereign power of its own. Also problematic was the fact that Span-
ish American juntas were not represented in the central junta, which led some
of the New World juntas to claim that they were equally sovereign and need
not obey the instructions of the central junta. Conservatives and royalists in
both Spain and Spanish America, who attested that the only body that could
replace an absent king was a regency, also criticized the central junta. In
1820, as French troops stormed south, meeting little military resistance, and

142 The Crisis of an Empire

as independent measures were taken in some Spanish American capitals to

establish local sovereignty vis--vis the central junta, the central junta dis-
solved itself, leading to the establishment of a temporary regency and the call-
ing of a general meeting of the Spanish people. This meeting took on a parlia-
mentary form (cortes) and included delegates from both Spain and Spanish
America. It was held on the Isle of Len near Cdiz between 1810 and 1812.
One of the rst missions of the 181012 cortes was to enact a new constitu-
tion for Spain. This constitution, the members of the central junta hoped,
would enable the state to reinstate order and would regain the true charac-
ter of Spain that had been lost because our parents were incapable of conserv-
ing the precious depository of liberty that their ascendants had left them. The
junta intended to use the invasion, the legitimacy crisis and the resulting power
vacuum to consolidate the state, unify the laws of the different kingdoms, and
return to the golden age that had allegedly preceded the war and royal absolut-
ism: My parents have left me slavery and misery, and I will leave my descen-
dants liberty and glory. These goals could not be achieved without a constitu-
tion: because one cannot build well on sand, and without fundamental and
constitutional laws, which would defend the good that has already been done
and will prohibit the bad which some attempt to do.
After two years of discussions, the Constitution of Cdiz was enacted
(1812). It reected a fragile balance between the retention of existing laws and
legal innovation, between traditional and enlightened thought. In the back-
ground was the French example, which most Spaniards viewed as a model to
avoid. France was the invading enemy that had attempted to force on Span-
iards foreign ways of living and foreign laws. Yet the French model was also
rejected because even the most enlightened and liberal sectors in Spain viewed
with horror the elimination of the monarchy and especially the attack against
the church.
The establishment a central junta, a regency, the meeting of the parliament,
and the enactment of a constitution failed to restore peace to the monarchy. In
both Spain and Spanish America, discussions between liberals and conserva-
tives continued, and many individuals refused to accept a constitution they felt
betrayed both king and religion. In some Spanish American capitalsfor
example, Caracaslocal juntas were established as a response to the institu-
tion of the regency, and in 1811, independence from Spain and the Spanish
king were formally declared.
In spite of these dramatic developments within the Hispanic world, the fate
of the Spanish monarchy was once again determined by outside forces. The
defeat of Napoleon in Europe allowed Fernando to reoccupy the Spanish
throne in 1814. He immediately nullied the Constitution of Cdiz and rein-
The Crisis of an Empire 143

stated Old Regime structures in both Spain and Spanish America. Some Span-
iards resented these measures, and eventually Fernando was forced to rein-
state the Constitution of Cdiz in 1821. The return to Old Regime structures
also brought about a break with the liberal, autonomy-seeking Spanish Amer-
ican juntas, which in the late 1810s adopted republican forms of government
and declared their independence. The king reacted by sending troops to Span-
ish America and mobilizing the local militias. The war, which is often por-
trayed as a civil war between Spanish Americans, ended in 1826, leaving Spain
stripped of its colonies, with the exception of Cuba, the Philippines, and Pu-
erto Rico. Some areas experienced widespread popular uprisings, and dif-
ferent regions struggled to afrm their sovereignty or even supremacy. Ter-
ritorial fragmentation followed, leading to the creation of new states by way
of pacts between cities and regions.
The literature that analyzes these events usually portrays them as instances
of national afrmation that also marked the transition from Old Regime to
new liberal forms of government. In the Spanish American case, the French
invasion of peninsular Spain in the early nineteenth century and subsequent
developments in Europe initiated wars for national independence, fought
against European Spaniards who were seen as foreign invaders and illegiti-
mate rulers. This view of the European Spaniards was the natural result of the
emergence of a distinct Spanish American identity, an identity reafrmed dur-
ing the struggle for independence. Often called Creolism, it emerged in
many elds, such as culture, language, and religion. Yet it was essentially
social and political in orientation. In the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries,
Creolism was a vehicle through which Spanish Americans expressed their
desire for a greater local autonomy and equality with other Spaniards. In the
seventeenth and particularly in the eighteenth century, it allowed Spanish
Americans to afrm their distinction from European Spaniards. By the early
nineteenth century, Creolism led Spanish Americans to seek their indepen-
dence. Presented as a national or protonational identity, Creolism was used by
the nascent Spanish American states to consolidate their collective identities.
There were several reasons for interpreting Creolism as a national sentiment
in spite of its spread throughout diverse regions of Spanish America. Accord-
ing to the literature, Creolism was an identity automatically given (or taken
this is seldom claried) by people born in the New World. Initially it coex-
isted with a Spanish identity, and indeed Creoles stressed that nothing distin-
guished them from other Spaniards. But by the late seventeenth and eighteenth
centuries, Spanishness and Creolism became antagonistic notions, and Euro-
pean and American Spaniards were placed in opposition to one another.
Initially a local and urban identity, by the early nineteenth century Creolism
144 The Crisis of an Empire

spread to cover larger territories, which eventually coincided in many cases

with the nascent Spanish American states.
While in Spanish America national afrmation was developing in opposi-
tion to European Spaniards, a war of independence was taking place (1808
14) in Spain as well, but against a foreign invader. According to the litera-
ture, this war marked the beginning of contemporary Spain, and it signaled
the rst steps towards the construction of a liberal, national, and centralized
state. One of the most important legal modications introduced during this
period was the redenition of the citizen (vecino) as a national. Urban
identity, which dened membership in the local community, thus became a
guideline dening both Spaniards and Spanish citizens. And, because this pro-
cess lacked historical references and because debates on modern citizenship
had to rely on Old Regime traditions, the transition to new models was only
partially successful. Among other things, the Cdiz legislators failed to theor-
ize a national citizen as an abstract individual participating in an abstract
nation. Instead, they continued to perceive the national citizen in terms of real
persons with ties to actual communities. For most historians, the continuing
use of the term vecino in debates about ciudadanos (which was the term used
in the Constitution of Cdiz), and of the term natural in debates about Span-
iards, thus signals difculty in breaking with the past. The intention of early
nineteenth-century Spaniards was to create a modern nation with nationals
and citizens, but result fell short of the goals.
In the following pages, I address these issues by looking at the way both the
Spanish and Spanish American communities dened their boundaries in this
period of upheaval. I show how old forms of inclusion and exclusion survived
the crisis, not because of a failure to eradicate traditional structures, but be-
cause of a deliberate wish for continuity. I also question the national charac-
ter of these early nineteenth-century events and demonstrate that a discourse
traditionally interpreted as national was not truly new, nor was it intended
to construct a new type of community. In Spanish America, a Creole discourse
gained importance in the late eighteenth century and during the years of impe-
rial crisis. This discourse, however, was not nationalist. It strove to demon-
strate that Spanish America was an independent kingdom within the struc-
tures of the Spanish monarchy; that is, it was an independent kingdom within
the kingdoms of Spain. As such, its people were eligible to enjoy a monopoly
on ofce holding, and they could not be subjected to other Spanish kingdoms.
The independence Creoles sought was from Castile, not from Spain. This
independence, which had no legal precedent, was argued by reference to natu-
ral law. It adopted the distinction between permanent residents and transient
foreigners in order to explain how people who legally belonged to the same
The Crisis of an Empire 145

community (European and American Spaniards) could nevertheless be distin-

guished from one another. The adoption of new structures by virtue of natural
law allowed Creoles to present their community as a political community,
which, as with all other (Spanish) political communities, was not based on
birthright but depended on mutual ties of love and integration. Yet precisely
because it was dependent on natural law, the external boundaries of this new
community were ill dened and had to be reconstructed in the early nineteenth
century and beyond.
While this was happening in Spanish America, in Spain, the Constitution of
Cdiz adopted a denition of Spanishness and Spanish citizenship that was
based on seventeenth- and eighteenth-century discussions regarding vecindad
and naturaleza. Rather than dening the nation in cultural, linguistic, or eth-
nic terms, the constitution described Spaniards as people permanently residing
on Spanish territories in both the Old World and the New. It included or
excluded people from this community by reference to the traditional distinc-
tion between permanent members and transient foreigners. This distinction
allowed the inclusion of Indianswho were truly native to the regionand
the exclusion of Africanswho were brought there against their willfrom
Spanish citizenship. Clearly, even in the early nineteenth century, inclusion and
exclusion were still carried out without mentioning commonalities other than
love and commitment to the community. Furthermore, if the constitution
represented a break with the past, it did not necessarily indicate the coming of
a new era. More than anything else, the constitution marked an effort to
codify a long-standing tradition and to transform a complex system of classi-
cation and status attribution into a clear, unequivocal regime based on legis-
lation and formal declarations. This effort, however, had begun earlier (chap-
ters 4 and 5).

The Spanish American Scene:

Making European Spaniards Foreigners
The antagonism between European and American Spaniards can be
traced back to the sixteenth century, when sons of conquistadors claimed
economic, honorary, and administrative rewards for the services their families
had provided to the crown during the conquest period. Claiming that they
were benemritos, literally that they had good merits, these people speci-
cally requested preferential treatment over the new immigrants who had only
recently arrived from Spain. During the next two centuries, the antagonism
generated by competition between old and new immigrants became a per-
manent feature of Spanish American life. It was noteworthy in the religious
146 The Crisis of an Empire

orders, where old immigrants (American Spaniards) and new immigrants

(European Spaniards) competed for ofce, and it eventually extended to a
struggle regarding the allocation of ecclesiastical beneces and municipal of-
ces. European Spaniards asserted that Creoles were unworthy for ofce
because they were born into a different climate, which caused physical and
moral degeneration, because many of them were mestizos or at least had some
Indian inuence, and because their loyalty to Spain was incomplete. Creoles
responded to these allegations by afrming their Spanishness and thus their
eligibility for ofce. This discussion began in the seventeenth century and
became especially important in the eighteenth century after the Bourbon kings
deliberately limited the role of Creoles in the management of local affairs.
Yet what Creoles mainly resented was a series of seventeenth-century deci-
sions that prohibited Spanish Americans from holding ofces in their native
jurisdiction. These laws clearly favored European Spaniards, who were not
only allowed to hold ofces in Spain but enjoyed the same right in the New
World. Indeed, rather than instituting a monopoly on ofce holding that fa-
vored natives, as was the case in Spain, in Spanish America the laws favored a
monopoly by foreigners.
During the seventeenth and early eighteenth century, Creole eligibility for
ofce was argued by stressing the Spanishness and loyalty of Creoles: they
were ordinary Spaniards who merited the rights enjoyed by all other natives
and vassals. People should not be discriminated against because of the terri-
tory or kingdom where they were born, and immigration to the New World
could never extinguish the original blood privileges (originarios privilegios de
sangre) of Spanish Americans. Despite their birth and residence in the New
World, Creoles still belonged to the kingdom of Castile, with which they
formed a single body politic (cuerpo poltico) and whose privileges they had
the right to enjoy. Because Creoles were qualied and faithful vassals, and
because they were Castilians, they were worthy of equal treatment. As was
true for all other Castilians, they could be employed in local ofces.
This Creole stand accurately reected their rights in the current legal situa-
tion. By law, the Spanish American domains were an extension of Castilian
territory and, by law, natives of Spanish America, even if their families origi-
nated in a non-Castilian kingdom, were Castilians. Castilian law and Cas-
tilian institutions operated in Spanish America, and, theoretically at least,
there was no legal instrument that distinguished Spanish Americans from
other Castilians. Under these circumstances, demand for equality with other
Castilians was both comprehensible and justied. Yet, by the mid-seventeenth
century, and particularly in the eighteenth century, Creole demands for eligi-
bility for ofces in Spanish America were accompanied by the call to institute
The Crisis of an Empire 147

in their favor a monopoly on ofce holding. Because a monopoly on ofce

holding was always tied to nativeness, it was essential to claim that Creoles
were natives of the jurisdiction, whereas all other Spaniards were not.
Writing in 1667, Pedro de Bolvar y de la Redonda forcefully argued that
European Spaniards loved Spain rather than Spanish America. Unlike native-
born Spanish Americans, or persons who were raised, or studied, or lived in
Spanish America, or who had acquired citizenship (vecindad) in it, Spaniards
born in Europe could not be interested in its welfare. They considered Spanish
America a foreign land, and they maintained their loyalty to their original
community, where their families continued to reside and to which they longed
to return. Although European and American Spaniards were formally natives
of the same kingdom and vassals of the same king, in Spanish America Euro-
pean Spaniards were newcomers (advenedizos) and outsiders (estraos).
Even in the best of circumstances they could only be viewed as adopted, not
natural, children of the land.
Some sixty years later, Juan Antonio de Ahumada added to this argument
by clearly stating that European Spaniards were transients in Spanish Amer-
ica. They were different from Spaniards who were born, had been educated,
had studied, and had xed their domicile in Spanish America because, unlike
these people, European Spaniards were not citizens (ciudadanos). They lacked
citizenship because they had no domicile in the jurisdiction, and as simple
transients ( peregrinos), they only merited treatment as guests. The city of
Caracas made similar allegations in 1796. Its authorities distinguished be-
tween noncitizen (no vecinos) European Spaniards, on one hand, and natives
and citizens of the city, on the other. Explaining that European ofcials who
were noncitizens knew very little about their community, the local council
insisted that their condition as transients meant they cared little for its welfare.
As people who considered Caracas a place of passage ( posada), they only
wanted to acquire sufcient property to return to their native land. Because
they had no need to remain in the jurisdiction of Caracas, they did not care if
the country was destroyed. Natives and Spanish citizens (vecinos espaoles),
on the contrary, linked their future to Caracas. As people who were married in
the jurisdiction and who possessed property there, they attempted to live in
peace with one another.
The idea that the Europeans were transients, whereas Creoles were citizens
of the Spanish American communities, led to the classication of Creoles as
natives and European Spaniards as foreigners. Writing in New Spain at
the beginning of the nineteenth century, Servando Teresa de Mier suggested
that Creolism was the attribute of people who identied with America rather
than with Spain. He included among Creoles those individuals who had
148 The Crisis of an Empire

immigrated to Spanish America from Spain and had lived there most of their
lives, shared the local customs, married native wives, acquired properties in
the jurisdiction and who were in all other ways well rooted in the continent.
According to him, these factors indicated that these individuals transferred
their loyalties from Spain to Spanish America. They learned to love their
adoptive community, and this love eventually became as strong, or even
stronger, than their love for their community of origin. Spaniards who had
decided not to return to Spain but to reside permanently in Spanish America
were therefore Creoles. Their decision to do so could be inferred, Teresa de
Mier said, from a ten-year residence in the jurisdiction.
Explained in this way, the distinction between Creoles and European Span-
iards perfectly replicated Castilian and Spanish debates on both local citi-
zenship (vecindad) and nativeness (naturaleza). It attested that status de-
pended, rst and foremost, on individual integration in a local community
(citizenship), and it specied that this integration also transformed people into
members of a larger community (the community of natives). Like all other
foreigners, European Spaniards who immigrated to Spanish America could
undergo a civic conversion. This conversion required that they abandon their
previous condition as European Spaniards and become American Spaniards.
European and American Spaniards were thus placed in opposition to one
another, and individuals were either European, or they were American. Among
other things, this meant that individuals permanently living in Spanish Amer-
ica could no longer maintain their citizenship or their nativeness in Spain.
Servando Teresa de Mier openly confessed this fact when he argued that Span-
iards could be converted into Creoles and Creoles could be converted into
Spaniards and then classied these persons as ones who had naturalized. He
concluded that the Creole community was formed and maintained by the free
association of people. What really mattered was not where an individual was
born, but his decision to associate himself permanently with the Spanish Amer-
ican community.
This idea of transformation was also invoked in a local journal in 1810 in
Buenos Aires. It was then argued that the political community had two types
of members: some members were natural, while others were members by
adoption. Among the rst were individuals born in the province; among the
second were persons who came to Buenos Aires at a later stage. In both cases,
membership required being part of the community and regarding it as ones
own. These attitudes could be demonstrated by giving the community per-
sonal as well as nancial services, observing the local laws and customs, and
respecting the local government. European Spaniards who truly transferred
their loyalty from their community of birth to Buenos Aires would be wel-
The Crisis of an Empire 149

comed as members of this community. Indeed, the patria was not a place of
birth; instead it was a community to which one belonged.
But how could the Creole community be distinguished from the Castilian
community if Spanish America was formally and legally integrated within the
later? The need to create new boundaries and to insist on an independent
Spanish American citizenship and nativeness dramatically inuenced the Cre-
ole discourse. Instead of simply reproducing the existing legal categories, as
early as the middle of the seventeenth century Creoles claimed that natural
law, as well as divine law and the law of nations, distinguished between people
born in one territory and those born in the other, even if by civil law they be-
longed to the same kingdom. Spain was a conglomerate of many different
communities, each with its own laws, institutions, and natives. All Spaniards
were tied to the monarch, but they were foreigners to one another. This reality
persisted even if civil law did not recognize it. The conclusion was clear:
because Spanish America was a territory with its own traditions, laws, and
institutions, it therefore, by implication, had its own community of natives.
Implied in these ideas was the claim that Creoles were no longer Castilians;
they were now instituted as natives and citizens of an independent and distin-
guishable Spanish kingdom (or perhaps various kingdoms; this issue was
never truly resolved). This independent existence was supported by natural
law, and therefore it could not be denied.

Since the power of civil law does not reach the sphere of natural effects, we
experience that sons of the Old Spain are foreign to the New Spain, even if this
is not recognized by civil law. Among these natural effects we include, with
much reason, the love that people have to the land in which they were born
and their lack of care to all others, these motives being two solid principles
that argue in favor of granting ofces to natives and not foreigners. . . .
Although they [European Spaniards] are not considered by civil law for-
eigners in the Indies, the truth is that they did not obtain their nature in them.
They have in the Old Spain, and not in the New, their houses, fathers, broth-
ers, and all that is capable of inuencing the inclination of a man. When they
are exiled to this distant land to serve an ofce, they do not change their
nature, nor do they become insensitive to the impulses with which they were
born. Because of these impulses by necessity they do not lose sight of nor
[discontinue] attention to their own people by being here, and because they
wish to consult and help them (if not enrich them), they regard themselves as
temporary in America, and they wish to return to the quietness of their patria
and the comfort of their home.

As long as European Spaniards did not make a deliberate decision to change

their political and emotional adhesions, they remained European and thus
150 The Crisis of an Empire

foreigners in Spanish America. Whether legally classied as natives or not,

their true and natural condition as foreigners disqualied European from
holding ofces in Spanish America.
Writing in 1792, Juan Pablo Viscardo y Guzmn clearly espoused this the-
ory. Explaining that Spanish American vindication was an ordinary vindica-
tion within Hispanic structures, he compared the status of Lowlanders in
Castile to that of Castilians in Spanish America. In the early fteenth century,
Castilians rejected the penetration of Lowlanders into their territory because,
although they were vassals of the king, Lowlanders were deemed foreigners.
The same could be said now with regard to European Spaniards in Spanish
America. Although European Spaniards were vassals of the king, they were
foreigners in Spanish America and should be excluded from ofces reserved
to natives.
Once the Spanish American community was instituted as a separate Spanish
kingdom and European Spaniards were classied as foreigners, Spanish Amer-
icans became exclusive candidates for ofce holding. This monopoly was
part of divine and natural law as printed on human hearts. It was an an-
cient law, also recognized in Castilian legislation and applied by both pope and
king. It was a law that was followed in all the Iberian kingdoms and was
adopted by all nations because it replicated simple principles that were part
of human reason. Based on natural law, the monopoly on ofce holding, as
well as the identication of Spanish Americans as the only people who should
enjoy this monopoly, could exist despite the absence of supportive legislation.
Late eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century Creole claims thus embodied
a struggle against the inclusion of Spanish America in Castile. Although Cre-
oles identied this inclusion as a breach in the ancient constitution of Spain,
such was not the case. Rather than maintaining the status quo, Creole dis-
course advocated a change that amounted to a new interpretation of the Span-
ish state. Instead of accepting their status as Castiliansa status that they
once embraced and even forcefully defendedCreoles now claimed member-
ship in an independent Spanish kingdom or kingdoms. They thus placed them-
selves in opposition to Castile, rather than Spain.
Creole vindication of a separate kingdom or kingdoms within the Spanish
structure was laid out clearly during the 180814 crisis. After the abdication
of the Spanish king and the French occupation of Spain, the Spanish American
communities and their representatives in Spain constantly insisted that they
were subjected not to Spain, but to the Spanish monarch. The European
Spanish kingdoms, which included Castile, could not exercise power over
them because once the king was gone, the Spanish American community was
as sovereign and as free as they were. This enabled Spanish Americans to
The Crisis of an Empire 151

freely decide whether to obey the central junta, the regency, or the parliament.
Contrary to accepted wisdom, Spanish Americans were not ghting simply for
equality. During the crisis, Spanish Americans afrmed their uniqueness and
stressed their refusal to follow the path taken by other Castilians. All this
happened without Creoles ever negating their Spanishness. In the words of
Camilo Torres, recorded in 1809: We are as Spanish as the descendants of
Don Pelayo and, because of it, we are worthy of all distinctions, privileges, and
prerogatives as the rest of the nation. Or, as one of the Spanish American
delegates to the cortes of Cdiz proclaimed: We Americans, as sons of Euro-
peans, suckle from birth a love of the peninsula, and since childhood we call
and consider ourselves its children. Its names and the names of its town and
villages sound well to our ears, and we are not only Spaniards, but we are
proud of being ones. As happened before, Spanishness also meant entitle-
ment to ofce. Yet the question of how Spanish Americans could be eligible for
ofces in Spain (as they demanded) while peninsular Spaniards were excluded
from ofces in the Americas was never confronted.
The most problematic aspect of this Creole discourse was found in the ill-
dened borders of the new, natural community it instituted. In some cases, this
community seemed to embody the entire American continent, as the con-
frontation between American and European Spaniards would indicate. In
others, the boundaries enclosed possibly a vice-royalty, a province, or even a
single city. This lack of clarity was possible because the new kingdom was
instituted by natural and not civil law. This allowed those proposing it to
ignore formal denitions and boundaries and to place emphasis instead on the
natural ties that united people who loved one another. Most such ties were
created through daily association and were instituted by residence and integra-
tion in a specic local community. This would indicate that Creolism was a
municipal identity, with a limited extension. Yet love was not necessarily re-
stricted to this local sphere. As I argued in previous chapters, in both Spain and
Spanish America integration in a local community was always, by extension,
an act of integration into larger structures, such as the kingdom. Love of the
local community and citizenship could thus lead to nativeness. But nativeness
of what?
The question of scope thus remained unsolved. This was evident in the
parliamentary debates in Cdiz, where Spanish American delegates disagreed
about what constituted a political unit worthy of representation and self-
government. The boundaries of the new natural community were equally frail
during the Spanish American wars of independence. In some cases, these wars
were not fought against a European power but instead pitted Spanish Ameri-
can communities against one another. Each community struggled to assert
152 The Crisis of an Empire

its autonomy, and in some cases its supremacy. Yet none wanted to be isolated
from the others. While insisting on their natural right to a separate existence,
most Spanish American communities tried to construct the larger political
structures that they considered as natural and normal. This tension between
local aspirations and global constructions, and the belief that beyond the
municipal realm was a wider community to which one belonged, was present
in the colonial period, but it was particularly difcult to manage during the
independence period when the organization of polities was justied by a dis-
course that constructed communities by natural and not civic law, and that
stressed, above all, love and natural ties. Indeed, the early nineteenth-century
disintegration of a once united Spanish America began in the eighteenth cen-
tury with the introduction of what came to be known as Creolism.

The European Scene:

The Identication of Spaniards and Spanish Citizens
War, foreign occupation, and the abdication of the king, as well as the
wish to produce a written constitution for Spain, offered an occasion for both
European and American Spaniards to review the past and to examine ideas of
community. One of their rst tasks was to decide on whose behalf the cortes of
Cdiz was speaking. It was generally agreed among the delegates that the
parliament spoke for the nation, yet it was unclear who belonged to this
nation. The rst article of the new constitution resolved this matter. It set the
rule that the nation included Spaniards of both hemispheres. Article 5
followed and dened Spaniards as all free men born and domiciled in Spanish
domains and their children, all foreigners with naturalization letters, all for-
eigners who, without such letters, were citizens (vecinos) of local communities
for at least ten years, and all freemen who obtained their liberty in Spain.
Except for the status of freemen, which I discuss later, Spanishness as de-
ned in Cdiz was a restatement of Castilian nativeness. Since its standards for
Spanishness were identical to the seventeenth- and eighteenth-century view
of nativeness, persons born and domiciled in the kingdom and also for-
eigners who had obtained their naturalization, either formally or implicitly,
were now declared Spaniards.
Having set the rule dening who the Spaniards were, the cortes proceeded to
institute a new distinction between Spaniards and Spanish citizens. Citizen-
ship was granted to Spaniards who on both sides descended of Spanish fam-
ilies from Spain and Spanish America and who had their domicile in the
kingdom (art. 18); to naturalized foreigners who had obtained, after their
naturalization, letters of citizenship (art. 19); and to sons of foreigners domi-
The Crisis of an Empire 153

ciled in Spain who had never left the kingdom without license and who
when reaching twenty-one years of agehad obtained citizenship (vecindad)
in a Spanish municipality and were exercising a useful profession, ofce, or
industry (art. 21). Naturalized foreigners who wished to obtain citizenship
letters were required to meet one of several conditions: to have brought to
Spain some important invention or industry, to have purchased taxable prop-
erty in Spain, to have established commerce there with their own capital, or to
have rendered services to the Spanish nation (art. 20). Citizenship was re-
quired for ofce holding (art. 25) and in order to participate in elections. The
cortes also dened the right to be represented in the national assembly, as only
citizens were considered worthy of representation (art. 29). Citizenship could
be legally suspended for moral and educational reasons (art. 25), but it could
not be easily revoked. It could be lost only through acquiring another native-
ness (they use the term naturaleza), by living for ve consecutive years outside
Spain without a government commission or a permit, the acceptance of em-
ployment by a foreign government, or following certain criminal convictions
(art. 24).
Whereas Spanishness as dened in Cdiz adopted nativeness as a guide,
citizenship as outlined by the cortes was a new invention that included a
variety of traits. The maintenance of a domicile was still a main consideration,
as was its abandonment, which continued to be interpreted as an act that
terminated the relationship between the individual and the community. Also
important was the traditional idea that people could be loyal to only one
community at a time. Obtaining another nativeness or serving another gov-
ernment were therefore sufcient reasons to revoke an individuals citizenship.
In all these cases, the early modern idea that held certain external acts to prove
the existence of an internal decision was still operative. Abandoning ones
residence and establishing a relationship with a foreign community or a for-
eign government demonstrated (by way of legal presumption) that the citizen
no longer loved his homeland and had established permanent ties with a
foreign community. In early modern terms, he was no longer a native; in
modern terms, he ceased to be a citizen.
The continuity with the past and the association between nativeness and
modern citizenship were noteworthy. Persons born of Spanish parents and
who, according to the Constitution of Cdiz, were worthy of automatic cit-
izenship, would have been referred to in early modern debates as old, legit-
imate, properly original, and true natives of Spain. In these debates,
however, the councils and courts consistently insisted that they were equal to,
not preferable to, all other natives. The status of sons of foreigners, who were
included in the category of Spaniards but whose citizenship depended on the
154 The Crisis of an Empire

fulllment of certain requirements, also followed previously elaborated guide-

lines. In fact, their citizenship was conditioned by considerations that in the
eighteenth century would have granted them nativeness: the establishment of
a domicile by both the petitioners and their parents and the attainment of local
citizenship (vecindad). The grant of citizenship to naturalized foreigners also
utilized many traditional membership presumptions, such as marriage; it also
retained the idea that exceptional aliens were worthy of special treatment
because of services rendered to the nation, as they had been formerly rendered
to the king.
Given this continuity with the past, and the implicit and explicit references
to both vecindad and naturaleza, some of the Cdiz delegates found it hard to
understand why certain people were Spaniards but not Spanish citizens.
Many of them asked how someone could be a native or be naturalized yet
not be a citizen. They attested that the grant of citizenship was simply the
rights to the city (los derechos de la ciudad) and argued that it had to be
extended to all natives who permanently resided in Spain and Spanish Amer-
ica. The nation itself was nothing more than a collection of vecinos and all
Spaniards must also be citizens. Under the Old Regime, those who were
citizens were also natives, and these delegates criticized the current arrange-
ment for making some people Spaniards and non-Spaniards at the same time.
Especially striking was the delegates refusal to adopt a regime of legality
and their unwillingness to admit the possibility of dening Spanishness and
citizenship in a clear and conclusive way. Referring to the Old Regime inter-
play between behavior and intentions, legal presumptions and their inter-
pretation, some delegates attested that, before rights were allocated, it was
essential to verify peoples true intentions. True intentions were too diverse
and too individual to be fully codied by law. Therefore, the constitution
could never conclusively determine who was a Spaniard and who was a cit-
izen. Discussing what criteria should be adopted in order to dene Spanish
citizens, Oliveros pointed out that birth (which the constitution adopted as
a guide) should be deemed insufcient for the acquisition of citizenship. In
spite of the natural love individuals felt for their birthplace, education, he
remarked, was also important and often inuenced persons as much, if not
more, than their place of birth. Gutirrez de la Huerta thought that natural-
ization as stipulated in the constitution implemented unwelcomed and unnec-
essary peninsular practices in Spanish America. He insisted on the qualita-
tive difference between true (verdaderos) Spaniards and all others, stating
that it was essential to verify the roots (arraigo) foreigners had established in
the country and criticizing the proposed constitution for neglecting to do so.
Especially important from Gutirrez de la Huertas viewpoint was the need to
The Crisis of an Empire 155

guarantee that aliens truly intended to remain in the jurisdiction permanently

and that they felt loyal and attached to national interests. Gutirrez de
la Huerta also determined that the exercise of certain professions or the mak-
ing of certain investments could indeed testify to a foreigners attachment to
Spain, yet he insisted that these behaviors could be motivated by other rea-
sons, such as economic utility. Feli pointed out that foreigners always re-
mained attached to their community of origin, and he expressed the opinion
that this attachment could be harmful to Spanish interests. Such an attach-
ment could be counterbalanced only by an attachment to the adoptive com-
munity as well. This second attachment, based on such notions as arraigo and
apego, would guarantee that the foreigner was no longer dangerous to the
national community and that he could be granted citizenship. Apprehension
was expressed with regard to the idea that a prolonged residence would justify
naturalization. One cannot assume that foreigners living nine hundred years
or more in Spain were indeed Spaniards, since one had to always look beyond
external acts to discover their true meaning.
The wish to continue adhering to traditional categories was also expressed
by other delegates who believed that it was possible to dene the categories
Spaniard and citizen in legal terms, but who criticized the proposed constitu-
tion for failing to codify fully the existing regime. Under a regime of legality,
they argued, it was essential to enumerate the exceptions in favor of Spaniards
born abroad to parents on royal service. It was also important to openly state
that only Catholics could be naturalized in Spain. Further, it was necessary
to dene the ways by which Spanish descent could be proved and the number
of generations that would be examined for this purpose.
The denition of Spaniard and Spanish citizen was also required to clarify
the status of Spanish Americans. This clarication for the most part brought
European Spaniards into conict with American Spaniards, although neither
camp was monolithic and both represented a plurality of opinions. The central
junta having already declared in 1809 that Spanish America was an integral
part of Spain, the Cdiz delegates now had to decide how to cast this integra-
tion into reality. Many of them agreed that the nation consisted of all royal
vassals and that it included both American and European Spaniards. They
explained that Spanish America was absorbed into Castile and that, conse-
quently, its natives shared the same constitutions and honors ( fueros y hon-
ores) enjoyed by all other Castilians. The acceptance of Spanish Ameri-
cans was also based on the idea that they were loyal and enthusiastic, that
their religion, confraternity and intimate union with the metropolis were some
of many titles that made them worthy of such just consideration. They are
citizens of the same nation, they fulll the obligations of vassals, and they
156 The Crisis of an Empire

contribute efciently with their property and persons to conserve our indepen-
dence. The practical difculties inherent in distinguishing European from
American Spaniards was also invoked: We have used their soil, as they did
ours, we exchanged products, they contributed and obeyed as was requested
of them, we have there and they have here a large ascendance and descendants,
and a common language, interests and religion . . . they are our brothers,
Spaniards of 300 years.
Although this was the majority opinion, some delegates believed that Euro-
pean and American Spaniards did not form part of the same nation. Spanish
Americans were vassals of the same king but not natives of Spain. Once the
monarch was absent there was nothing necessary or natural about their asso-
ciation with European Spaniards. This view was mainly motivated by preju-
dice. At stake was the question of whether the Spanish nation could include
people of color and mixed blood who were abundant in the New World.
The admission of such people, these delegates argued, would introduce con-
fusion into a nation which was homogeneous and without internal rival-
ries. Following the debate, a compromise was reached (October 1810)
according to which the European and American territories were participants
in the same monarchy, and their natives and originals were members of the
same nation.
When the parliament turned to deal with Spanishness and Spanish citizen-
ship on September 1811, the stage was therefore set for the acceptance of
Spanish Americans as both Spaniards and citizens. But which Spanish Ameri-
cans would qualify and according to what criteria? The question had impor-
tant practical consequences. All those participating in the debate were aware
of the fact that the Spanish American population was much larger than the
European one. Therefore, if Creoles, Indians, mestizos, mulattos, and Africans
were all admitted as full members to the community, the majority of Spaniards
would be American.
Spanish Americans who were descendants of Spanish families posed no
problem. During the early modern period Spaniards born in Spain formed one
and the same community with Spaniards born in Spanish America. By deni-
tion, they both equally loved the Iberian peninsula and were both equally loyal
to the monarch. They could therefore be easily admitted as both Spaniards
and Spanish citizens. They were true and original natives of Spain and Spanish
America and, indeed, were always considered part of the community of Span-
ish natives. But what about the Indians?
Since the middle of the sixteenth century it was generally agreed that Indians
were rational human beings and free vassals of the king. As they had con-
verted to Catholicism, theoretically there was nothing to bar themeven
The Crisis of an Empire 157

during the colonial periodfrom membership in the community of Spanish

natives. Indeed, in the Spanish American setting, Indians were the quintessen-
tial natives. They were constantly referred to as natives, and their condi-
tion as members of a political community was commonly asserted. In 1598,
Baltasar Alamos de Barrientos indicated that two types of natives existed in
the New World: the Indians, who were native by origin, and the Spaniards,
who were native by birth. If ambitions had existed to separate the Indian
community from the Spanish one by creating two different republics in Span-
ish America (the Republic of Indians vs. the Republic of Spaniards), these
ambitions had failed from the start. Indians migrated to Spanish settlements,
and Spaniards invaded the Indian countryside. There was an ongoing process
of cultural and biological miscegenation (mestizaje) that was formally permit-
ted and even encouraged. Mixed unions between Spaniards and Indians
were allowed, and mixed offspring, as long as they were of legitimate birth,
were theoretically granted treatment as natives. The two-republic system itself
was based on the assumption that in some unknown moment in the future the
Indians, now treated as minors in need of protection, would come of age.
They would eventually fully convertreligiously, culturally and linguistically
from miserable vassals into full-edged Spaniards, and then they would
qualify as members of the community. Because of this wish, the desire to
separate Indians from Spaniards was accompanied by the contradictory im-
pulse to Hispanize the Indians and make them ordinary Spaniards. Follow-
ing this understanding, during the sixteenth century there were many cases
where both Indians and mestizos were accepted as citizens (vecinos) of Span-
ish local communities (chapter 3). During the entire colonial period, it was
theoretically possible for Indiansin their condition as natives and vassals
to hold public and ecclesiastical ofces. Yet, although legally granted the
rights of natives in Spanish America, the capacity of Indians to act as natives
was constantly contested. To counter this reluctance, the king periodically
reafrmed Indian rights, for example, in 1696, 1697, 1703, 1725, and 1766.
At least on one of these occasions (1697), royal jurists openly stated that there
was no need for royal intervention as no laws existed that would bar (legiti-
mate) Indians and mestizos from enjoying the rights of all natives and vas-
sals. Although discrimination did exist and it was widespread, it was based
on social practices not on law.
Given this background, the Cdiz delegates declared Indians both Spaniards
and Spanish citizens. Most of them afrmed that Indians were original mem-
bers of the Spanish community. Their communal existence, their personal
liberty, and their vassalage were recognized from the early colonial period.
Since then, they were allowed rights traditionally reserved for natives, such as
158 The Crisis of an Empire

ofce holding. Nothing new do I nd in these decrees, because our laws of

the Indies considered them equal in all respects to the Spaniards, and allowed
them to hold ofces and honors. This was the correct legal interpretation,
but it was also a compelling moral and political solution. Because of their
condition as true natives, Indians necessarily loved their homeland, which
was also the homeland of their forefathers. This love guaranteed their obe-
dience, delity, and good intentions towards Spain. Most discussants in-
deed pointed out that Indians were natives and originals of the Americas,
and they expressed the opinion that they had to be accepted as original mem-
bers of a national community that now formally extended to the New
World. The existence of an Indian republic during the colonial period demon-
strated that Indians were capable of taking upon themselves membership priv-
ileges and duties. As both original and qualied members of the community,
there was no reason to deny them citizenship. Linguistic and cultural differ-
ences should not stand in their way. These differences also existed in European
Spain, yet no one pretended that the Basques or the Galicians should be denied
citizenship on account of them. There was no reason to believe that a native of
Galicia and a native of Andalusia were not as different, or even more different,
than a Spaniard and an Indian. Some deputies, fearing the practical con-
sequences of the inclusion of Indians among Spanish citizens, suggested a
separate but equal regime. Others, despite recognizing the nativeness of
Indians, simply stated that Indians were unworthy of citizenship. Neverthe-
less, the majority opinion ruled that Indians and American Spaniards together
formed a single community with European Spaniards and all were Spaniards
and citizens.
In spite of its importance, this conclusion was highly theoretical. Articles
25(2) and (3) of the constitution stipulated that citizenship could be sus-
pended in cases of debt, domestic servitude, lack of employment, and from
1830 onward, illiteracy. Given the social and economic conditions of most
Indians in early nineteenth-century Spanish America, it was clear from the
start that many of them could be denied the exercise of their citizenship.
Despite their formal inclusion among the category of citizens, in practice they
could still be noncitizens and therefore remain as marginal members of the
political community.
Although the status of Indians provoked relatively little debate, the inclu-
sion of individuals of mixed descent among Spanish citizens was highly con-
troversial. Many of those opposed to it insisted that most mestizos were of
illegitimate birth and that they differed from Spaniards not only in race but
also in customs. They were naturally inept to exercise political rights, which
was the reason they were traditionally excluded for many ofces and occupa-
The Crisis of an Empire 159

tions. But how could one deny citizenship to people who descended from
citizens? The solution adopted was to distinguish between mestizos, on one
hand, and mulattos and Africans, on the other. Included in the rst group were
people of purely Indian and Spanish descent. These people, even when they
were mixed blood inherited the rights of their forefathers and were declared
both Spaniards and Spanish citizens. Included in the second group were
individuals with partial or complete African descent. These individuals could
be recognized as Spaniards, but not citizens. They could acquire citizenship
only under special circumstances, which included special services to the nation
or special talents; legitimate birth; marriage to a legitimate wife; the establish-
ment of domicile; and the holding of a useful ofce, profession, or industry.
Why discriminate against people of African descent? During the colonial
period it was generally agreed that, as slaves, Africans lack of legal capacity
prevented them from obtaining citizenship and nativeness. Once freed, their
status remained unclear. Theoretically, Africans were foreigners. They were
vassals of foreign kings and natives and originals of Africa who had no ties
with the Spanish monarch or with the Spanish community. This perception of
Africans as foreigners rst appeared in the sixteenth century, and it persisted to
the eighteenth century. Writing to the king in 1796 to protest recent legisla-
tion that allowed Africans to purchase the status of whites, the city council of
Caracas espoused this idea. Pointing to the their origin as slaves, their fre-
quent illegitimate birth, their ongoing relationships with other Africans still in
state of slavery, as well as to their inferior state, the local authorities of
Caracas expressed their opinion that persons of African descent were for-
eigners. Their loyalty to king and kingdom was doubtful because far from
looking to Spain as the center of their interests, they keep their eyes on the dark
people of Africa (which is where they come from) to patronize them and raise
them against the Spaniards, the authors, so they say, of all their grievances.
The council also suggested that Africans did not contribute to the king and the
city by paying taxes as other citizens did. Since they were unburdened with
duties, they should not enjoy privileges: the mulattos of this province, then,
enjoy the benets of society without contributing a maraved to its revenues
and nances, or to its public and charitable institutions. This has come about
because the laws regulating the conduct of mulattos, making them contribute
and ordering them to pay a moderate tax to the treasury, are completely
ignored, either because ofcials are unaware of their existence or indifferent to
their application, or ignorant of their origin.
The assimilation between Africans and foreigners, which was already sug-
gested in colonial documents, was reproduced in the Cdiz debates. In their
condition as natives of another region, individuals of African ancestry never
160 The Crisis of an Empire

truly joined the Spanish community. Like other foreigners, they were unable
to use their prolonged residence in Spain to transform them into natives.
Residence itself was meaningless unless accompanied by the intention to cre-
ate permanent ties with the adoptive community. As slaves, Africans lacked
legal capacity and could not express a legally binding wish to abandon their
community of origin and become Spanish. As freemen, they failed to do so.
Independent of the decision individual Africans might have taken, it was well
known that Africans were brought to Spanish territories against their will.
Because their immigration was involuntary, their residence in these territories
could not serve as an indication (presumption) to their intentions. Neither
could their behavior as Spaniards or as citizens. In short, Africans and their
descendants lacked both the legal capacity and the (presumed) will to be
naturalized in Spain and Spanish America. The king always wanted to main-
tain separate this foreign caste which proceeds from different parts of Africa,
either Muslim or pagan from other classes of Americans, and without allow-
ing it even the minor access to ofces and civic decorations. He prohibited the
bishops from exempting them of the impediment they had to hold ecclesiasti-
cal ofces, and they were incapable in summary to a legal naturalization, or
obtaining the title of citizen. In this way, our kings used the faculty that all
nations have to x on foreigners who were introduced into it restrictions and
impediments which lead to the best order and security. Indeed, although by
virtue of birth and domicile Africans could be recognized as Spaniards, they
could not be included among Spanish citizens.
The argument equating Africans with foreigners rst appeared during the
discussion on the right of Africans to be represented in the national assembly
(cortes). On that occasion (January 1811), some of the delegates who opposed
this concession cited examples from other European countries, but all these
examples dealt with the treatment of foreigners. Africans were designated as
foreigners again in August 1811 during the debate on the status of freed slaves
who, according to article 5 of the constitution, would become Spaniards upon
their emancipation. One delegate expressed his surprise: it was insensible, he
determined, to ask foreigners to comply with a ten-year residence before al-
lowing them to naturalize, yet to admit Africans to Spanishness immediately
upon their freedom. Africans should not receive preference because, unlike
other foreigners, they had never manifested their wish to come to Spain and
Spanish America. Their immigration was carried out against their will, and
before they were admitted to the nation, the nation must verify that they
indeed loved it sufciently, and that they were willing to subject themselves to
its laws. Freedom in itself was not a sufcient guarantee because it gave no
The Crisis of an Empire 161

indication of the wish (nimo) to become a member of the community. In

short, freed Africans, like all other foreigners, should be required to comply
with the ten-year residence requirement before being admitted to the nation.
Other delegates suggested that manumission was a civic birth. As a result,
Africans freed in Spain could be considered born in the territory even if their
material birth occurred elsewhere. However, as with all those born in Spain,
they could become Spaniards only after they acquired vecindad.
By the time the debates on citizenship took place (September 1811), the
classication of Africans as foreigners was so obvious to some of the speakers
that they protested against the need to set specic rules for Africans. Spaniards
of African decent, they insisted, were foreigners and their status could be
inferred by reference to the clauses dealing with all other foreigners. In the
debate, Africans were also compared to Gypsies, yet distinguished from them.
Gypsies, also of a foreign origin, entered Spain some three hundred years
earlier. Yet unlike the Africans, they chose to do so. It was even argued that
they also integrated into the community by voluntarily remaining in Spain and
by intermarrying with other Spaniards. As a result, contrary to Africans, Gyp-
sies could be considered natives and be worthy of citizenship.
Even those favoring citizenship for Spaniards of African descent argued
their case by reference to nativeness and foreignness. Mentioning the tradi-
tional association between citizenship, domicile, and naturalization, they de-
clared that membership in the Spanish community was obtained, rst and
foremost, by virtue of integration in a local community. Spaniards of African
descent who were already vecinos of Spanish communities or who acted as
citizens by paying taxes and complying with other obligations were necessarily
both vecinos and naturales, both Spaniards and Spanish citizens. Other dele-
gates afrmed that local birth to parents and grandparents born in the king-
dom was sufcient to establish nativeness. The investigation of the family tree
beyond two generations would be ill advised because, if ancestry was to be
taken back to the foundation of the Peninsula, no one would qualify as
sufciently Spanish because Spain, like other countries of the world, has
suffered its own revolutions and was mixed with foreign nations. Three
generations of vassalage to the king, Catholicism, and local citizenship should
be considered sufcient to constitute nativeness and thus citizenship because
according to the legal presumptions, they proved the existence of an individual
decision to integrate in the community. In the case of freed Africans, this was
also a just solution. Most Africans were freed after long years of service. This
fact guaranteed that by the time they obtained their freedom, they had ac-
quired the customs and ways of the nation. It was only fair that the nation that
162 The Crisis of an Empire

deprived them of their natural patria would give them an adoptive one. A
third group of delegates stated that it was utterly unthinkable that African
descent would be waived in cases of complete foreignerswho were never
asked about their genealogybut would hinder (true) Spaniards from obtain-
ing citizenship. A fourth group suggested that, from a practical point of view,
distinguishing between individuals of African ancestry and all others was an
impossible task. This practical concern brought about the only modication
introduced in the article following the parliamentary debate. Whereas the
original project spoke about individuals of African origin, the nal text
included individuals reputed and held to be of African descent. This modi-
cation was introduced largely because it was feared that unless citizenship
was tied to reputation rather than to hard facts, all Spaniards would have to
prove that they had no African blood in order to obtain citizenship. The ghost
of the limpieza de sangre debates reappeared. But relying on reputation, other
deputies said, was just as problematic.
This parliamentary discussion demonstrated that the solution adopted
recognizing Creoles, Indians, and mestizos as both Spaniards and citizens and
granting individuals of African descent the status of Spaniards but not of
citizenscould be legally justied as much as it could be legally rebuffed.
Based on early modern discussions of vecindad and naturaleza, these debates
allowed different and often contradictory interpretations. As happened be-
fore, the interests at stake conditioned the interpretation adopted. At the end
of the day, the inclusion of Spaniards and Indians and the exclusion of Afri-
cans was a compromise adopted to avoid a direct confrontation between
European and American Spaniards, as well as between conservatives and lib-
erals. It ensured that the bulk of Spanish citizens would still reside within the
connes of the Old World. It established an apparent equality between Spain
and Spanish AmericaAfricans of both jurisdictions were equally discrimi-
nated againstyet it clearly favored the Spanish European population whose
memory of African slavery and African origin was extremely dim.
The Cdiz discussions also demonstrated that legal theories could be em-
ployed to justify what were in fact racial and ethnic prejudices. The delegates
were aware of these issues, and many of them openly stated that, whether
natives or foreigners, Africans were simply inferior to both Europeans and
Indians and were unworthy of citizenship. Indeed, as happened in the cases
of the Gypsies and the Chuetas, Africans could be excluded from the commu-
nity because of their condition as members of a group rather than as individ-
uals (chapter 6). As members of a group their wishes could be inferred by a
society that, independently of its declared intentions and ignoring the usual
emphasis on personal choice, simply refused to treat them equally.
The Crisis of an Empire 163

In both Spain and Spanish America, the distinction between permanent
members and transient foreigners remained operative in the late eighteenth
and early nineteenth centuries. In both Spain and Spanish America, this dis-
tinction dened the boundaries of new communities and distinguished insiders
from outsiders. In Spanish America, these boundaries were dened in order to
exclude European Spaniards and to institute the community as an indepen-
dent kingdom or kingdoms within Spanish structures. In Spain, the same
boundaries were used to afrm the unity of the Spanish world and to classify
Spaniards and citizens, eventually including Indians but not Africans among
the second.
The distinction between permanent members and transient foreigners
lacked references to culture, language, race, and genealogy. In both Spain and
Spanish America it presented the nation as a group of people who wanted to
live together and was subjected to the same law. Commonalities based on
language, culture, race, and genealogy were both raised and rejected in the
name of a discourse of love that naturally sprang among people sharing the
same space for a sufcient length of time. The image of the community as a
small conglomerate of people who intimately knew one another, and trusted
one other, was overpowering. It was advocated in both Spain and Spanish
America, and in both cases, the construction of a wider (national) commu-
nity was still based, rst and foremost, on the inclusion in a local one.
The consideration of Creolism on one hand, and the constitutional debate
in Spain on the other, within a larger historical context, questions our ability
to view these instances as moments of national afrmation or as indicators for
the coming of a new age. What comes to light is, rst and foremost, continuity.
This continuity was not a failure, nor was it due to an ill design. It was
intentional and meaningful, as contemporaries continued to adhere to a basic
distinction between people who could be trusted and those who could not,
and as they interpreted trust in the same old manner. What was different was
not the discourse, but whom it was applied to and how. By using the tradi-
tional criteria, late eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century Spaniards and
Spanish Americans did create new divisions. They distinguished American
from European Spaniards, and they formally included the Indians, yet not the
Africans, as full members of the Spanish community.

Was Spain Exceptional?

The question of whether Spanish eighteenth-century citizenship prac-

tices were exceptional involves not just an exercise in comparative history.
Within Spanish scholarship and Spanish history, this is an essential question,
one thatwhether it is explicitly stated or notis still present in the minds of
many historians. For most of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, Spanish
exceptionalism was an accepted fact. It was cherished and lamented by Span-
iards and foreigners alike. Europe served as the standard against which
Spain was measured, and it appeared that Spain was indeed different. For
some people, this difference meant that Spaniards were superior to other Eu-
ropeans. For others it signaled, on the contrary, Spains relative decline and
backwardness. Uniqueness and integration in Europe were thus two different
expressions of the same inquiry. Those who felt content with Spains dis-
tinctiveness expressed their position against integration in Europe, whereas
those holding the contrary view called for the Europeanization of Spain.
Spanish exceptionalism was explained by Spains unique history. Claudio
Snchez Albornoz and Amrico Castro tied it to the Muslim occupation dur-
ing the Middle Ages and the subsequent struggle to bring Spain under Chris-
tian control. For Snchez Albornoz, this struggle afrmed, as well as en-
hanced, Spains Christian origins; for Castro, it demonstrated the importance

Was Spain Exceptional? 165

of Muslim and Jewish heritage in the construction of Spain. Ortega y Gasset

tied Spanish exceptionalism to the absence of true feudalism, which had
deprived Spaniards of habits of obedience. Hilgarth specied that Spain
lacked a true merchant class, and thus it failed to experience during the Middle
Ages an economic, political, and social growth similar to that of other Euro-
pean countries. Other authors related Spanish exceptionalism to less tangible
factors, such as the existence of a unique autochthonous national character
thatfor better or for worsemade Spaniards different from other Euro-
peans. This character forced Spaniards into choosing whether to be loyal to
their true nature or to betray it by adhering to modernity.
Spanish exceptionalism was a convenient historical and political tool. Dur-
ing the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, the Dutch and English used it in
their struggle against Spanish hegemony. They argued that Spain exhibited an
especially intense religious intoleranceas embodied, for example, in the ac-
tivities of the Inquisitionand that it was particularly cruel towards the In-
dian population in the Americas. This Black Legend persisted to the nine-
teenth and twentieth centuries. It produced an opposing White Legend
that, accepting Spanish distinctiveness, nevertheless argued that Spanish be-
havior in the New World was more humane and benevolent than that of other
European powers. Spanish exceptionalism was also supported by foreigners
in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, when, in the view of many, Spain
represented a romantic country, with people more exotic, more temperamen-
tal, and truer to themselves. Both foreigners and Spaniards used Spanish ex-
ceptionalism to explain how a great early modern empire became, later, a
secondary European power and to justify its accompanying economic decline
and political instability. Last but not least, exceptionalism was used to exalt a
Hispanic spirit, shared by both Spaniards and Spanish Americans. It served
to enhance the Spanish reputation and advance Spanish interests in Spanish
America against the menace of expanding U.S. inuence.
Debates about Spanish exceptionalism, which occupied much of the Span-
ish cultural and political scene during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries,
continue to be an important issue in present-day Spain. Instead of stressing the
uniqueness of Spain, contemporary historians afrm that Spain is indeed Eu-
ropean and argue that it has always been a part of Europe. Highlighting
Europes internal diversity, they assert that previous generations erred in their
characterization because they compared Spain with central and northern Eu-
rope. Insisting that Spain needs to be evaluated as a southern European and
Mediterranean country and measured against such countries as Italy and
Greece, they continue to ask if Spain is European and to what a degree. They
166 Was Spain Exceptional?

conclude that Spanish history is a variation of European history, and that

developments in Spain were in tune with developments in other (comparable)
European countries.
The degree to which Spanish practices of citizenship and nativeness were
exceptional can be explored from two perspectives. First, did Castilians and
Spaniards perceive their practices as exceptional? Second, were these self-
perceptions justied? To answer the rst question, I looked at what Castilians
and Spaniards said about their own practices. In order to answer the second
question, I examined the existing literature on citizenship and nativeness in
Italy, England, and France. In Italy, municipal citizenship dened the relation-
ship of individuals to local communities. In England, freedom, rst practiced
in corporate cities and then constituted as the right of all persons born in
England, allowed individuals to enjoy a special regime of rights and duties. In
France, the same was true with regards to the status of the bourgeois. Al-
though none of these institutions were identical to Castilian vecindad, all of
them were similar to vecindad in that they dened the rights of individuals vis-
-vis the local community by adopting a discourse of belonging. In Italy, cate-
gories of membership in the kingdom failed to emerge, yet there are many
indications that the construction of such categories was at least underway in
seventeenth- and eighteenth-century Naples. In England and France, subjec-
tion to the monarch was the main factor dening the rights of individuals in
the kingdom. Again, none of these categories were identical to Spanish natu-
raleza, but all of them included the idea that certain people (subjects or
natives) were worthy of certain rights. By comparing Spain and Spanish
America to Italy, England, and France I also wish to encourage those working
on these countries, as well as other scholars, to inquire about the relation
between membership in a local community and membership in the community
of the kingdom, between local and common law, and between formal legal
categories and social practices, all questions that have not yet received suf-
cient attention in the literature.

Spanish Exceptionalism:
Spanish and Spanish American Contemporary Perceptions
Eighteenth-century Spaniards consistently asserted that both citizenship
and nativeness were categories based on natural law. Litigants who claimed
they were worthy of citizenship argued that they had a natural liberty to
change their adhesion from one community to another and that communities
could not refuse to admit them to citizenship. This natural liberty preceded
the laws and was independent of them. The same was true of the relation
Was Spain Exceptional? 167

between the establishment of domicile and citizenship and the effect of absen-
teeism on communal membership. Both were universal and natural, and both
existed whether or not they were explicitly upheld in legislation. Even the ten-
year residency presumption was presented by litigants as a universal rule, since
it was well known and accepted throughout Europe; it had, after all,
originated in Roman law. The idea that Castilian practices were natural and
universal also applied to nativeness and foreignness. The distinction between
natives and foreigners was based on natural factors: it was natural that
those born in the community loved it, as much as it was natural that those
born outside it did not. This love was part of human nature and was not based
on free choice. It was automatically generated in all people once certain cir-
cumstances coincided. Similar assertions were made with regard to the pre-
sumption regime, which allowed foreigners to demonstrate their intention to
integrate into the community through their behavior. This regime was the
embodiment of a common sense that was both reasonable and necessary.
Because civil or human law, which reproduced this regime, merely expressed a
more general rule, it could be set aside or new elements could be introduced
into it. One such element, for example, was the distinction between children of
transient and integrated foreigners born in Spain. Although this distinction
was not explicitly stated in the law, it could be adopted because it was part of a
common law that was followed throughout Europe.
Seventeenth- and eighteenth-century Spanish authors provided us addi-
tional keys to this analysis. The exclusion of dangerous foreigners, espe-
cially merchants, and the inclusion of benecial ones, they said, were pol-
icies followed all over the world and had been practiced for as long as
human memory could recall. Spanish customs were thus presaged in a re-
mote past shared by all Europeans, and references to them were found in the
Bible and in Greek and Roman precedents. These customs were the natural
consequence of an accumulated experience about the nature of both man and
society. Rejection and inclusion were so well entrenched in human conscious-
ness and so widely practiced that they were part of both natural law and the
laws of nations. Therefore, the king could not modify the procedures and
requirements for naturalization: since the transformation of foreigners into
natives was a matter of natural and not civil or human law, it was beyond royal
sphere of action and was independent of royal wish.
The conviction that citizenship and nativeness were categories based on
natural and consensual criteria led Spanish and Spanish Americans to say little
about them. They rarely discussed their specic contents or explained their
meaning. They were convinced that citizenship and nativeness represented a
truth too obvious to ignore and too consensual to have to be supported by
168 Was Spain Exceptional?

proofs. Indeed, because citizenship and nativeness were so clear to contempo-

raries, early modern literature hardly dedicated attention to the study of these
categories, and they eventually remained opaque to historians, who tended to
ignore them.
The need to afrm that Spanish practices were natural and universal was tied
to the way that Spaniards conceived of the world around them. For most
people living in eighteenth-century Spain, nature, reason, justice, and univer-
sality were different expressions of the same reality, which, embodied in a
natural law, united religion, morality, and politics in a single body of thought.
Guided by Roman and canon law and by the scriptures and clergy, early
modern Spaniards lived in a universe where there were no simple, human laws.
Instead, peoples behavior was guided and evaluated by a system of thought
that embodied human reason as accumulated by experience and as devised
through divine revelation. As Manlio Bellomo once put it, this was a system
that expressed unshakable certitudes. It guided early modern Europeans, aided
their understanding of the world, and provided their communities with no-
tions of unity and order. It contained ideals that molded intellectual attitudes,
but it also formed behavioral patterns. People living under this system con-
stantly sought out absolute and eternal values and attempted to practice them
in everyday life. Under such a system, local norms were always a reection of
higher norms. These higher norms were not legal, but moral. They were com-
mon to all Christians, and they were valid whether legislation recognized them
or not. Three types of laws existed in the universe: divine, natural, and
human. Divine law embodied divine reason and was inaccessible to humans.
Natural law was that part of divine law that humans could grasp by using their
reason. It was inscribed in their hearts and in their consciousness and, by
denition, it was both natural and reasonable. Human law governed the legal
arrangements devised by humans. Yet these arrangements were never arbi-
trary. They did not depend on human decision or on the mutual agreement
between individuals. Instead, as Bernice Hamilton once put it, human posi-
tive law is binding in conscience, rstly because its precepts are in harmony
with natural or divine law, and secondly, because its very binding power comes
largely from the natural law. The law of nations (ius gentium) was also a
human law. But contrary to other human laws, it was shared by more than a
single community.
The relation between nature, justice, reason, and universality was also re-
ected in early modern Spanish political theory. Communal construction
and communal governance were theorized by reference to classic and religious
texts. Most Spanish political theorists accepted the Aristotelian and Thomist
view of humans as social animals and as creatures that could develop only in
Was Spain Exceptional? 169

the context of an organized society. Many of them doubted that a presocial

and even a prepolitical stage of humanity ever existed. In their view, God gave
humans reason. This reason, which accompanied man from birth, forced him
to live in society, which was the only way he could guarantee his survival and
Early modern Spanish legal discussions also reected this reality. Litigants
and lawyers quoted the Bible rather than legal enactments when they asserted
their rights. They expected royal and municipal judges to apply the same
criteria that God would apply, and they wanted ofcials to beto the best of
their abilitiesas just, as compassionate, and as wise as he was. From the
litigants point of view, justice was never a legal matter. It was a moral issue
where the views of theologians were just as important as those of jurists.
Indeed, even as late as the eighteenth century in both Spain and Spanish Amer-
ica, a person trained in theology was considered as good a candidate to be
judge as was a person trained in the law.
People living in seventeenth- and eighteenth-century Spain thus perceived
natural law, including the law of nations, as quotidian legal and political
tools. Whether faithfully reproduced in human law or not, as a reection of
divine law, natural law was an instrument that was applicable in everyday
circumstances and that regulated all social relations. The existence of natural
law meant that legal arrangements were never accidental and human commu-
nities were never articial. Rather than arbitrary creations of men, human
communities were an expression of human nature and human reason as cre-
ated by God. By denition, then, the rules governing human communities
were universal and natural, as well as reasonable and unchangeable. It was
within this system that people were identied as members of communities.
Membership reected an understanding of both mens duties to God and
mens nature as described in the scriptures and in classical and legal texts.
Under these circumstances, the afrmation that Spanish practices of citizen-
ship and nativeness were natural and universal not only reected the commu-
nity, but also expressed ideas about society and human nature. But were Span-
iards right in their assertions that a common practice existed in Europe?

Spanish Exceptionalism:
The View from Italy, England, and France
Municipal communities existed in other parts of Europe, and member-
ship in them dened who could hold public ofce and participate in gov-
ernment and who could trade and enjoy tax reductions. These similarities
were especially noteworthy during the Middle Ages. Comparing practices in
170 Was Spain Exceptional?

England, France, Germany, and northern Italy, Susan Reynolds concludes that
a common heritage indeed existed in medieval Western Europe. In the ter-
ritories included in her survey, communities of inhabitants consolidated in the
eleventh to thirteenth centuries. They were recognized or acted as corpora-
tions, and they received foundational charters with jurisdiction over commu-
nal lands, the right to exercise special commercial privileges, and the right to
establish local institutions and elect local ofcials. Both rural and urban com-
munities enjoyed these privileges, and towns, rather than having a different
institutional character than villages, simply had more privileges and freedoms.
In both towns and villages, community members were typically adult male
heads of households who resided permanently in the jurisdiction. The conces-
sion of local citizenship to newcomers depended on immigration policies and
varied according to local needs and circumstances. In many places, the resi-
dence of a year plus one day was necessary to transform potential members
into true members. In these cases, residence functioned as a legal presumption:
those who could reside in a settlement for a year without their lord seeking
them out could be presumed freeor, at least, they could be constituted as
freeman by virtue of prescription. In some communities, residence created an
obligation on the part of a newcomer to become a member, while in others it
implicated the community in an obligation to accept the newcomer. In many
areas it was held that only those complying with duties could enjoy rights.
Similarities between the different communities in medieval Western Europe
also extended to the realm of the kingdom. By the tenth century, the idea of
people as a community of customs, law, and descent was well entrenched in
Western society, and individuals who permanently resided in the territory
were classied as belonging to it.
Afrming the unity of Western European political and social organization in
the Middle Ages, Reynolds leaves unexplored the relation between local com-
munities and the community of the kingdom. She also argues that the com-
monalties she describes ended with the thirteenth century. From the fourteenth
century onward, different local citizenship practices emerged in different parts
of Europe, and citizenship, which was a regime that formerly had applied to
the majority of people, became a status associated with the privileged few.
Other authors agree with this analysis. They point out the similarity of Euro-
pean practices during the Middle Ages and suggest that by the thirteenth, four-
teenth, or fteenth century, local citizenship underwent important transforma-
tions, leaving it impoverished (since it was granted to fewer individuals) and
highly diversied (as different practices emerged in different parts of Europe).
Nevertheless, an important group of historians argues that the citizenship
regime that evolved in Western Europe from the eleventh to the thirteenth
Was Spain Exceptional? 171

century persisted with slight modications until the eighteenth century. Ac-
cording to this view, municipal communities continued to be associations of
free individuals during the early modern period. These communities were de-
ned by a common legal regime that closely tied membership to the ability to
exercise rights. Village communities also continued to enroll members, main-
tain their assemblies, and operate in a way not radically different from urban
communities. During this period the distinction between rural and urban con-
tinued to be unclear: it basically denoted a difference in the number, not
the existence, of rights. Community membersusually identied as resident
heads of households possessing propertywere allowed to use communal
land and could actively participate in decision making. Rather than changing,
in the early modern period local citizenship was simply overshadowed by the
appearance and consolidation of kingdoms. This development restricted the
liberty of local communities and integrated them in larger structures. These
larger structures subjected people to a sovereign power instead of allowing
them to participate in it, as was the case previously. Although still members
and citizens, individuals were now instituted rst and foremost as subjects.
The level of analysis adopted and the willingness to stress similarities or
differences can explain at least partially this disagreement among scholars. As
always happens with comparison, no two cases are alike. Given the diversity
of practices in each European jurisdiction, and how comparisons are generally
constructed by using a secondary literature that is highly inuenced by dif-
ferent historiographical traditions, personal agendas, and types of available
sources, it is far from surprising that conclusions may vary. These difculties
do not disappear when one attempts to compare a single country, such as
Spain, to the rest of Europe. Clearly, no other European country had institu-
tions identical to vecindad and naturaleza. It is equally clear that all of them
had categories of belonging that allowed people to enjoy a specic regime of
rights and duties in a local community on one hand, and a larger community
on the other. Comparing Spain to Europe also involves choosing some exam-
ples that would represent Europe. In the discussion that follows, my choice
of Italy, England, and France was motivated by both practical and theoretical
considerations. On the practical side, all three countries enjoy an abundant
literature covering membership in both local communities and the community
of the kingdom. On the theoretical side, each of these countries is traditionally
thought to represent a very distinct case. In Italy, local communities were
extremely powerful as expressed by the rise and persistence of the city-state.
England is usually portrayed as a centralized state where parliamentary con-
trol over the king was especially strong and local communities maintained at
least some of their vigor. France is often presented as the prototype of an
172 Was Spain Exceptional?

absolutist state, in which a centralist and interventionist king systematically

revoked the power and autonomy of local communities. These cases thus
allow us to question Spanish exceptionalism from three very distinct Euro-
pean perspectives.

In the late Middle Ages Italy was the birthplace of a new legal science,
the ius commune. Although this science was highly inuential and it guided
citizenship practices in the different Italian towns, it was insufcient to bring
these practices into conformity. Some basic premises, such as the idea that
citizenship depended on a contract and that communities could convert non-
citizens into citizens, were common to all cities, but individual cities imple-
mented them differently. During the early modern period, in many cities sev-
eral types of citizenship coexisted, and different institutions could declare
people citizens without that declaration necessarily binding the other authori-
ties. In sixteenth- and seventeenth-century Naples, citizenship (cittadinanza)
was granted by the municipal tribunal (eletti del tribunale della citt), which
was acting for the king, or in the case of clergy by the ecclesiastical authori-
ties. It could be obtained either by justice or by grace. Citizenship by
justice depended on the fulllment of certain requirements stipulated in the
laws. These requirements included conception and birth in the city or mar-
riage to a wife conceived and born in the city, coupled with a ten-year resi-
dence and the possession of a house. Although in most cases citizenship by
justice was acknowledged formally by the appropriate body, this process often
explicitly afrmed that citizenship was actually generated on its own by virtue
of the newcomers activities, his intention to remain in the city permanently,
and his integration in the local community; all the municipal body did was to
recognize its preexistence. Citizenship by grace depended on the authorities
discretion so candidates petitioning for it were not generally required to meet
any specic requirements. The proliferation of discretionary grants in the
seventeenth century provoked opposition, and by the eighteenth century,
royal authorities introduced restrictions on the power to issue these grants.
In addition to these formal mechanisms for citizenship acquisition, people
living in Naples could obtain the rights of citizens in other ways as well.
Because citizens enjoyed tax exemptions, the scal court (regia camera della
sommaria) had to examine whether taxpayers were citizens or not. Over the
years, this court gradually became the main authority for recognizing (or
refusing to recognize) the citizenship of individuals. Its activities gave Neapoli-
tans a second practical method by which they could obtain the privileges of
citizenship. The criteria the court employed were similar, although not identi-
Was Spain Exceptional? 173

cal, to the ones employed by the municipal tribunal. Beginning in the mid-
sixteenth century and especially throughout the seventeenth, the court gener-
ally held that permanent residence was the principal method for citizenship
acquisition. Residence had to be accompanied by an animus permanendi, that
is, by the wish to remain in the jurisdiction for good and by the promise to
establish a stable home in the territory. This wish could be orally attested, or it
could be deduced by observing the behavior of petitioners.
Citizenship practices in Naples and Castile were thus quite similar. In both
places citizenship could be obtained by either formal or implicit means. In both
places, it was essential to verify the true intentions of newcomers, which
could be done by using legal presumptions meant to help the authorities inter-
pret persons behavior. In both places, the authorities normally did not grant
citizenship but only issued a formal recognition of an existing condition. Nev-
ertheless, Naples was different from Castile in some respects. In Naples, sev-
eral authorities rather than a single one were qualied to determine formally
the status of individuals. Also different was the existence of citizenship by
grace. Castilian communities could elect to sell citizenship to individuals who
could never meet the standards of legal proof, yet these sales were highly excep-
tional and their practice was constantly questioned. Indeed, citizenship by
grace as practiced in Naples seemed closer to Castilian nativeness than to
Castilian vecindad. As mentioned in previous chapters, the Castilian kings in-
sisted on exercising the power to naturalize foreigners who were personally at-
tached to them. People naturalized by royal decree often could not pass the
legal tests for naturalization, so their attainment of this status was a sign of
royal sovereignty. The same could be said of Naples, whose authorities demon-
strated their sovereignty by converting nondeserving foreigners into citizens.
Fewer similarities can be found between Castile and other Italian cities. In
sixteenth-century Venice, a distinction existed between people who obtained
their citizenship after a few years or many years of residence (citizens de extra
and de intus) and between these and others who acquired it by way of a
particular grant or by birth. Citizenship by birth was granted to individuals
born in the city of a legitimate marriage and whose father and paternal grand-
father were original citizens. Citizenship by birth could also be awarded to
persons born elsewhere if they were descendants of old families. In all these
cases, citizenship depended, above all, on the reputation of the family. Tauto-
logically dened as a condition possessed by those who descended from origi-
nal citizens, citizenship by birth was in fact a public recognition of the familys
role and place in the city. It denoted a social status, and it became increasingly
tied to a noble way of living that could exclude people born in the city if they
exercised vile occupations or were occupied in mercantile activities. Once
174 Was Spain Exceptional?

a family obtained recognition as native, its members were no long required

to prove their estate. For all other people, citizenship acquisition or verica-
tion procedures were instituted. They involved petitioning the signoria (the
local governing body) and obtaining a favorable decision of the senate, the
merchants, and the scal authorities. Among other things, these authorities
examined the candidates integration in the local community and his eco-
nomic, military, and civic contribution to it. A high degree of integration could
compensate for insufcient residence or tax payment.
Fifteenth-century Florence also allowed foreigners to become citizens by
way of a particular grant, by virtue of a treaty, or by verifying residence and
marriage to a local person. Citizenship could also be granted to a person
holding an ofce. Each one of these types of citizenship brought with it a
different set of rights and obligations, and each set could be modied accord-
ing to the particular circumstances of each individual case. Conditions in
the city of Pescia in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries illustrate these
points. There were two types of citizenship. The rst depended on birth, and
the second on the establishment of a domicile, the exercise of a profession, or
an economic contribution to the community. Passage from one type of citizen-
ship to the other depended on the permission of the general council; likewise,
the sovereign could grant it. In early sixteenth-century Rome, citizenship was
conditioned by the possession of real estate, residence, and a legitimate birth.
By the middle of the century, a parallel mechanism for citizenship acquisition
was also instituted. This mechanism required no prerequisites other than vir-
tue, honor, and dignity. In 1614, the distinction between citizens by
residence and citizens by honor was formalized, and each received a dif-
ferent set of rights and duties. Normal citizens (whose status was attained
by virtue of residence) could no longer enjoy many rights, among them the
right to hold public ofce. Citizenship criteria in sixteenth- and seventeenth-
century Torino were unclear, and citizenship lists were short in comparison to
the number of people actually titled citizens. According to Simona Cerutti,
this indicated that, besides the formal procedures for citizenship declaration,
other processes existed allowing people to consider themselves citizens. Resi-
dence and tax payment were the most obvious criteria for inclusion among
citizens, as was the wish to establish a permanent domicile in the city, which
could be proved by the purchase of real estate. In seventeenth-century Brescia,
citizens were divided among original citizens, and citizens by virtue of domi-
cile, which required owning a house one would inhabit with his family.
Petitioners also had to prove that they actively participated in local life and
that they had lived in the community for at least ten years. The attainment of
Was Spain Exceptional? 175

citizenship was considered the last and most formal aspect of a social process
begun long before: citizenship was granted to foreigners who were already
well integrated in the community. In eighteenth-century Mantova, citizenship
could be acquired by a particular grant ( grazia) or by the fulllment of certain
requirements stipulated in the laws ( per incolato). Grants were given to
people whose presence in the city was deemed desirable because of their pro-
fession, wealth, or prestige. All others could acquire citizenship once they had
established domicile in the city and integrated into the community. Codied in
the early sixteenth century, this second procedurewhich survived to the
eighteenth centuryrequired a ten-year residence, a minimum economic ac-
tivity, payment of taxes, and the observance of local laws.
The existence of various types of citizenship and the emphasis on the no-
bility of citizens were lacking in Castile. Nevertheless, like Castile, Venice,
Florence, Pescia, Rome, Brescia, Torino, and Mantova stressed the impor-
tance of residence, integration, and reputation for the purpose of obtaining
citizenship. These Italian city-states maintained a duality between citizenship
by birth and citizenship by integration, and they allowed the authorities to
afrm their sovereignty by granting citizenship to people who did not comply
with the normal requirements. In some cases it was clear that, as in Castile,
citizenship was constituted on its own, and its declaration by the authorities
was only a formal act of verication, not of creation. Legal presumptions were
also used in Italy to verify the existence of integration. But in Castile the native
born were required to integrate into the community if they wished to obtain
recognition as citizens, whereas in Italy birth appears to have granted persons
this status automatically.
Historians of late medieval and early modern Italy have often questioned
the actual importance of citizenship in Italian cities, arguing that by the early
modern period most cities paid little attention to citizenship. This lack of
interest was demonstrated by the scarcity of legislation on matters of citizen-
ship and by the absence of disputes over the correct classication of people as
citizens or foreigners. Citizenship was rarely denied to people and, at any rate,
most petitioners originated from the immediate province (contado), not from
other cities. Evidence also suggests that in some cases at least, citizenship
regulations were ignored, while in others people could claim that they were
citizens by reputation, thus bypassing all formal procedures. One reason for
this decay of the status of citizen was the fact that citizenship became insuf-
cient for the acquisition of many rights and unnecessary in order to have
others. Some historians have also stressed that throughout Europe, citizenship
was mainly a condition sought for economic reasons and that political rights,
176 Was Spain Exceptional?

such as the ability to vote and hold ofce, were less crucial aspects of it. They
have therefore reasoned that the attraction to citizenship became weaker as
its economic benets diminished in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries.
Other historians nevertheless afrmed that citizenship continued to be an
important social and political tie in early modern Italian cities, with a meaning
broader than the individual privileges attached to it. Above all, citizenship
implied the subjection of individuals to a sovereign power or to a municipal
authority. According to this view, most early modern Italian cities attributed
a great deal of importance to citizenship, and citizenship continued to be an
essential prerequisite for obtaining many rights.
This debate among Italian historians is useful from a comparative point of
view, because it hints that Italy, like Castile, experienced the tension between
social and implicit categorizations on one hand, and legal and formal on the
other. Indeed, the criticism the rst group of historians makes when its mem-
bers describe the decay of citizenship practices reproduces with surprising
delity many of the claims made in the past by historians of Castile. But if we
use the Castilian case as our model, the lack of legislation, the actions contrary
to laws, and even the absence of recorded conicts do not necessarily reect
the demise of citizenship. Instead, in Castile they were the result of the applica-
tion of doctrines not openly confessed in the legislation. They reected the
absence of disputes in a society that appears to have been more consensual
than we rst imagine, or that had other mechanismsoral and extralegal
meansof conict resolution. The same factors also demonstrated the priv-
ileging of social classication and implicit identities over legal and formal
categories. One wonders, therefore, if what Italian historians describe as decay
was indeed a gradual disappearance of citizenship, or whether what they
observed can be explained in other ways. Beyond this debate it is nevertheless
clear that citizenship in Italy was a regime restricted not only to a few cities,
but also to a small portion of the population within these cities. In Castile, on
the contrary, citizenship operated in both rural and urban communities, in
places both large and small, and it was granted to all heads of households.
It has also been suggested that Italian city-states never extended their cit-
izenship regime beyond the realm of the urban enclave, and that they never
developed notions analogous to Castilian naturaleza. Pacts existed between
cities allowing the mutual bestowal of citizenship rights to their inhabitants,
and city-states like Florence and Venice dominated other communities. But
unlike the linkages in the kingdoms of Spain, no Italian, or even a provincial,
community of natives came into existence. Instead, different communities
belonging to the same state each maintained its separate communal institu-
tions, statutes, councils, and ofcers and its own citizenship criteria. The in-
Was Spain Exceptional? 177

habitants of each community were considered a separate group and were

treated as foreigners in all other jurisdictions.
It is nevertheless plausible that at least some movement towards the creation
of a single community of natives similar to Castilian naturaleza did take place
in southern Italy. Naples, for example, was a kingdom consisting of a main
city (Naples) and various settlements of different sizes and importance. The
Neapolitan authorities recognized this reality and admitted that each local
community included in the kingdom had its own citizenship regime. Neverthe-
less, on different occasions, these authorities attempted to constitute a single
homogeneous community for the kingdom. This was especially clear in the
activities of the scal court, which was the body responsible for tax collection.
Tax collection depended on citizenship, and so the court was often charged
with distinguishing citizens from noncitizens. Actively pursuing this goal
within the connes of the city of Naples itself, its organs complained that the
criteria for exempting people living in the province were insufciently clear.
The scal authorities thus suggested charging the court with the duty of identi-
fying people as citizens throughout the kingdom. Local citizenship criteria
would continue to exist, yet there would be a single body responsible for
determining how these criteria would be applied so that, in spite of local
differences, people could attain recognition as citizens of the kingdom.
In reality, the path towards constituting a common citizenship regime in the
kingdom of Naples had been forged before. The fact that from the early
sixteenth century the scal court could declare people as citizens was in itself a
sign for the consolidation of state structures. It meant that the power to recog-
nize people as citizens was no longer only in municipal hands but now, because
of the involvement of the court, was shared between the municipality and the
king. Also in the early sixteenth century, a monopoly on ofce holding in favor
of natives, was instituted in Naples. For this purpose, in 1550 natives were
dened as those recognized by the municipal court as citizens, as well as other
people who possessed castles or feudal properties in the kingdom. There-
after citizenship and nativeness were treated as synonyms. Until the eigh-
teenth century, people could be naturalized to become citizens, and foreign-
ers could obtain citizenship and be declared natives after a ten-year residency,
marriage to a native, and the purchase of property. The local municipal court
of Naples bestowed foreigners with both citizenship and nativeness, and it
rarely distinguished between one status and the other. At the same time, Neap-
olitan jurists developed a constitutional discourse that distinguished the king-
dom from the monarch. This discourse presented the kingdom as a commu-
nity of natives that had an immemorial existence and was therefore previous
to and independent of the monarch.
178 Was Spain Exceptional?


Most literature on local citizenship in England during the early modern

period focuses on London. In it, freeman is the equivalent of citizen. The
story this literature tells is quite clear. In thirteenth- and fourteenth-centuries
London, the body of citizens was dened by charters that allowed only free-
men to practice crafts and trades, to participate in political life by electing and
being elected to ofce, and to enjoy legal privileges, such as the right to trial by
the local courts. There were ve ways by which to obtain freedom in London:
patrimony, apprenticeship, redemption, grant, or ofce. Freedom by patri-
mony was granted to sons of citizens who requested admission to freedom
under the auspices of the gild to which their father belonged. Freedom by
apprenticeship was granted after a seven-year training period, with the ap-
prentices master, or his company, paying the necessary costs. Freedom by
redemption consisted of purchasing freedom, with the cost varying according
to the trade or craft the newcomer wished to exercise. This means of acquiring
freedom provoked lengthy debates, which centered on the question of whether
the sums newcomers paid were equal to the privileges they received. As a result
of this periodic questioning, freedom by redemption was prohibited at times,
or its legal implications were restricted. Those freed by redemption were
forced to provide sureties that they would fulll the obligation of residing in
the jurisdiction and paying taxes. Freedom by grant was usually given to
individuals on the basis of petitions by the king, queen, bishops, or other
dignitary to Londons authorities, requesting that one of their clients be admit-
ted to freedom. This admission could take on the form of redemption, or it
could involve reduced fees or no fees at all. Freedom by ofce holding was
mainly bestowed on people working in the common council, such as clerks,
butlers, and valets of the city.
Londons historians tell us that during most of the early modern period,
citizenship was mainly identied with apprenticeship and the exercise of a
specic trade, craft, or occupation. Most admissions to freedom were ac-
quired on the basis of apprenticeship (up to nearly 90 percent in the 1550s),
placing most of the control over citizenship acquisition in the hands of the
gilds and companies. If in the fourteenth century their fellow tradesmen
admitted to gilds persons who were already freemen, by the early sixteenth
century membership in a gild was a requirement for obtaining freedom. As a
result of this shift, the gilds and companies effectively determined who would
be admitted as freemen and allowed to possess economic and political rights in
the city. This situation changed only in the late seventeenth and the eighteenth
centuries, when, for the rst time, the numbers of individuals admitted to
Was Spain Exceptional? 179

freedom by patrimony and redemption grew substantially. Although during

this period apprenticeship remained the most common instrument for the
acquisition of freedom, the immediate association between freedom and oc-
cupation was fading away. By that time, freedom became a mark of social
prestige sought by merchants, government ofcials, and professionals. Its
main signicance was that it conferred membership in a corporate community.
The growing importance of freedom by patrimony and redemption was
paralleled by the weakening of the gilds control over the crafts and trades.
Many people who resided outside the municipal boundaries yet within greater
London exercised the trades without acquiring freedom or gild membership.
This situation reduced the number of people willing to serve as apprentices.
Attempts to increase these numbers by offering advantages to individuals
willing to work within municipal boundaries mostly failed, as did campaigns
to locate and expel noncitizens practicing crafts and trades in the city. The
number of people admitted each year to the guilds and companies steadily
declined, from 2,100 persons a year in the 1670s to 1,250 a year in 1745. In
1750, a new system of licensing emerged, allowing nonfreemen to practice
certain ofces. As the economic benets of freedom diminished, so did interest
in becoming free. Freedom was now viewed mostly as a bothersome status
involving the payment of fees and the dutyrather than the privilegeof
holding municipal ofces.
There are some indications that similar developments occurred in other
early modern English corporate cities where only freemen were allowed to
trade. In all of them, freedom usually entailed membership in a gild, and
freedom and gild membership could not be separated. As was the case in
London, the gilds, rather than the municipal authorities, yielded most of the
power to admit people as freemen, although the grant of freedom to magnates
and their clients and the concession of freedom by redemption and patrimony
also existed. By the late seventeenth century, gild control over urban economic
activity considerably diminished, and by the eighteenth century, the associa-
tion between freedom and gild membership became weaker than ever before.
Nevertheless, at least in some jurisdictions, such as Leicester, York, Notting-
ham, Boston, Oxford, Southampton, Lincoln, and Yarmouth, the struggle to
maintain the privileges of freemen was particularly intense until at least the
eighteenth century.
Chartered cities in the English North America apparently followed the same
practice. New York City, for example, recognized three ways by which peo-
ple could become freemen: birth, apprenticeship, and redemption. The differ-
ences between this regime and the one practiced in London were minimal,
residing mainly in the adoption of a four-year apprenticeship instead of the
180 Was Spain Exceptional?

seven years required in London and in the admission of the poor. Attempts to
create a public registry of freemen failed in New York, and people often
referred to themselves as freeman by reputation. There is some discussion
whether the exercise of crafts and trades in the city was indeed restricted to
freeman. According to some, it was not, and citizenship in New York mainly
implied political, not economic, privileges. Similar practices were followed in
other chartered cities, such as Annapolis, Maryland, where a ve-year appren-
ticeship allowed people to become freemen.
English freedom was substantially different from the Castilian vecindad. It
mainly implied an economic insertion and, although this insertion gave rights
to other privileges, commercial interests and economic agency heavily con-
trolled it. Freedom was a formal regime that depended on formal declarations.
It existed only in chartered towns and was applied almost equally in England
and its colonies. In Castile, on the contrary, local citizenship existed in all
settlements. Although it carried with it some economic advantagessuch as
the right to use the communal pasture or to introduce certain products into the
local marketthe idea of citizenship as discussed within the community was
fairly distanced from these factors. Economic interests and agency might have
prompted some to question the status of certain people; yet rejection was
always couched in terms of a discourse of love. This discourse allowed declar-
ing that those who acted as members had the right to be members. As a result,
formal declarations were not required in Castile. When applied to Spanish
America, Castilian citizenship was seriously modied. As in the case of Italy, in
some odd way English freedom resembled Castilian nativeness and not citi-
zenship. This is especially true if we consider the idea of nativeness as it was
applied in Spanish America, where mercantile interests and agency dominated
the discussion. Indeed, in Spanish America the denition of nativeness was
largely controlled by the merchant guilds, which acted as both eyewitness and
expert witness. This denition implied the right to trade, and the classication
of people as merchants or artisans could determine whether they would be
accepted or rejected. Yet even in Spanish America, obtaining rights depended
on integration. Whether artisans or merchants, whether allowed to trade or
not, it was consistently claimed that people became members of the commu-
nity rst and foremost by virtue of their decision, which was evident in their
activities. Royal naturalization letters only formally sanctioned a situation
that was generated on its own.
These very real differences between Castilian citizenship and English free-
dom are somewhat mitigated by a recent literature that questions the nature
and extension of English freedom. According to Jonathan Barry, in the Middle
Ages freedom was a highly localized regime that designated emancipation
Was Spain Exceptional? 181

from feudal ties of people who became citizens in free towns. Over time,
however, freedom became an institution common to all Englishmen. In the
early modern period, freedom was claimed as a birthright and was constituted
as a key component of English political discourse and the ancient constitu-
tion. Regulated by local customs and legislation, it depended on royal orders,
parliamentary decisions, and the common law. It was meaningful in national
contexts, such as the parliamentary elections. As early as the seventeenth
century, common images if not common criteria for the admission of freemen
were consolidated. Most important among them were nancial independence
and the establishment of a domicile. Freemen were now identied as those
having property in their places of residence. Eventually, a rule was set accord-
ing to which all inhabitant householders paying scot and lotthe locally
levied taxhad the right to vote. Concurrent also were common law deci-
sions stipulating that those who abandoned the community also abandoned
their freedom. Under common law, in the late seventeenth century and in the
following century, men who owned property or who served as apprentices for
seven years could be considered free even if they did not obtain a formal
admission to the community. Indeed, common law restricted the ability of
gilds and municipal authorities to reject worthy candidates. A candidates
incapacity to comply with duties was the only consideration that could justify
exclusion. The common law courts also stated that freedom could never be
sold. Buying freedom by paying redemption fees was a ction. Although pre-
sented as a purchase, in reality this transaction consisted of formally recogniz-
ing that people were already free. Indeed, people who were truly unfree could
not purchase their freedom in this way. In summary, in seventeenth- and
eighteenth-century England a local, actual freeman and an abstract national
freeman existed side by side. Included in the common regime of freedom were
many of the rights recognized in Castile: the right to obtain freedom, the
importance of residence and marriage to a native, and the payment of an
entrance fee, as well as the payment of taxes. Furthermore, common law
courts explained that these factors were not important on their own: their
signicance was tied to the fact that they proved the willingness of newcomers
to become members of the community and to comply with the subsequent
duties. Once an applicant demonstrated his compliance with these require-
ments, communities could not refuse to grant him freedom.
This portrait of English freedom reveals a regime that had closed much of
the gap between Castilian citizenship and freedom. The English practice dem-
onstrated that, despite the importance of local arrangements, a common re-
gime could also exist. It argued that freedom (or at least the right to freedom)
could exist independent of formal declarations. It stated that what appeared to
182 Was Spain Exceptional?

be conditions were actually presumptions. Finally, the English practice argued

that communities and guilds were limited in their ability to reject candidates,
and it set the rule according to which people who acted in certain ways became
worthy of freedom.
The relation between membership in a local community and membership in
the community of the English kingdom has not yet won extensive treatment.
We are generally told that during the early modern period a distinction was
introduced separating aliensthose of another allegiancefrom foreigners
Englishmen not enjoying the freedom of the city. Concurrent with this dis-
tinction was the rise of a process that gradually restricted the eligibility of
aliens to freedom. London set the example by establishing, in 1427, that no
one could be made a freeman of the city unless he was under allegiance to the
king. Parliamentary acts of 1523 and 1530 extended this measure by prohibit-
ing the employment of aliens as apprentices and as practitioners of crafts and
trades. During this period, Londons citizens were also concerned with the
status of the sons of aliens born in the kingdom. Although these sons were
legally English (see below), they were often suspected of maintaining an in-
clination in favor of their parents country of origin. Londoners stated that
native-born persons should always be preferred over naturalized aliens. They
proposed a distinction between young bachelor aliens and elderly people who
had lived in the city for a long time and who were married and whose children
had been born in the city. Desiring to expel the rst, they offered limited
tolerance to the second by allowing their admission into Londons companies,
although not into Londons freedoms. Until 1737, Londons statutes forbade
the sons of foreigners, even those born in the kingdoms to naturalized parents,
to become freemen by apprenticeship; they could obtain recognition as free-
men only through redemption.
The situation in Castile could not have been more different. In Castile,
aliens were easily admitted to local communities, and this admission con-
verted them by extension into natives. Despite these differences, the preoccu-
pations expressed in London were surprisingly similar to the ones expressed in
Castile, Spain, and Spanish America. In all these places locals wished to guar-
antee that people who received the rights of members were indeed loyal to the
community. Integration in the community through residence and marriage
became a measure of the ability to trust a newcomer. Attempts to establish a
permanent distinction between natives and the naturalized were also present,
as locals called to restrict the rights of people legally considered natives but
whose loyalty remained questionable.
Most discussions regarding the classication of individuals as English or
aliens were related to the ability to own and inherit real estate. During the
Was Spain Exceptional? 183

late Middle Ages, this ability was restricted to individuals born in the kingdom
as a practical rather than an ideological matter. Birth in the kingdom allowed
parties to prove their genealogy, which assured their right to inherit land. Over
the years, what was initially a rule of evidence became a substantial guideline,
and the courts began to identify those born in the kingdom as the only people
eligible to inherit. With the consolidation of state structures in the sixteenth
and early seventeenth century, emphasis on birth gave way to emphasis on
allegiance. It was now claimed that what made people born in the kingdom
English was their subjection to the monarch. By the end of this process and
from the seventeenth century onward, the ability to inherit came to depend on
allegiance to the king. This allegiance was owed to the monarch in person
and not to the crown as an institution. It ignored the division of the monarchy
into different kingdoms, and people born under allegiance to the monarch
were considered members of a single community independent of whether they
were born in one kingdom or another. As natural subjects of the king, they
could demand equal rights and equal liberties in all royal domains. Changes in
dynastic unity and territorial losses and gains could thus unite the subjects
of various kingdoms into a single community, just as it might divide them
into several.
The adoption of allegiance as the sole criterion for membership in the com-
munity also meant that sons of Englishmen born abroad would be considered
English as long as their parents did not abandon their subjection to the mon-
arch. The general assumption was that they never did, and by the seventeenth
century it was repeatedly asserted that allegiance could not be abandoned
without royal approval. Allegiance also implied that people born in royal
domains were by denition original members of the community, irrespective
of their decent. On occasions, domicile was also invoked, but mostly as a
presumption. For example, in 1576 a royal decree ordered that people who
have lived in England for more than twenty years could be reputed natural
subjects of the realm, as long as their linguistic capacities, religion, and cus-
toms did not contradict this assumption.
During the seventeenth century, two different mechanisms allowing for-
eigners to enjoy the rights of Englishmen emerged. The king on the advice of
his council granted the rst, called denization. The parliament by a private
bill granted the second, titled naturalization. Both mechanisms had no xed
formula, nor were they regulated by law. Considered acts of sovereign bodies,
they depended on the discretion of the king or the parliament, and either actor
could decide when to grant them and to whom. There were no precise pre-
requisites and no clear procedures. In most cases, however, naturalization
generated greater benets than denization. It usually included more rights,
184 Was Spain Exceptional?

and it operated retrospectively by legally constituting those naturalized as

natives from the day of their birth. Yet because it was granted by parliament,
contrary to denization, naturalization could have an effect only in the king-
dom that issued it. Different naturalization procedures existed, for example, in
Ireland, Scotland, and England. The king was obliged to respect them all, yet
none had value outside the territory in which it was granted: naturalization
granted by the Scottish parliament could be ignored in England and vice versa.
The issuing of naturalization in parliament also meant submitting to long
procedures, including committees reports and a parliamentary vote. Natural-
ization was also substantially more expensive than denization and was prac-
tically closed to non-Protestants because it required making an oath to the
crown and participating in the sacraments of the Church of England.
Membership in the community of the kingdom of England was substan-
tially different from community membership in Spain. In England, emphasis
was placed on the relationship between subjects and the king. In Spain, royal
attempts to recast the community as one containing vassals mostly failed, as
different organs attested that the kingdom was, rst and foremost, a structure
linking individuals to one another within local communities. These different
visions of the community had important consequences. Because natural alle-
giance to the monarch could not be abandoned without royal consent, status
in the English case was permanent. Because the relationship between individ-
uals and the community could modify continuously, status could be changed
automatically and without royal intervention in the Spanish case. In the En-
glish case, several kingdoms could create a single community. In the Spanish
case, this singularity was impossible, and it continued to be elusive even after
the early eighteenth-century decrees that were intended to institute a united
community in Spain.

England in the New World

Englishmen who immigrated to the colonies maintained their birthright,
and as individuals born under allegiance to the king, they and their children
were part of the same community of subjects regardless of their domicile.
The status of people naturalized in the colonies was less clear. In question was
the ability of the colonial authorities acting on behalf of the king and the
colonial assemblies acting as parliaments to grant denization or naturalization
to foreigners. This question reected a wider constitutional debate that raged
throughout the colonial period regarding the authority of the English parlia-
ment in the colonies and the power of governors and local assemblies in
America. Another question that had no clear answer in English North Amer-
ica was the relation between freedom, company membership, and the rights of
Was Spain Exceptional? 185

Englishmen. These termsfreedom, membership, rightswere often treated

as synonyms. Some colonial charters explicitly stipulated that companies were
allowed to transport aliens to their territories. Others stated that foreigners
could be admitted to freedom and company membership. Although none
specically granted the companies the power to naturalize aliens, many people
assumed that admission to freedom and attaining naturalization were one and
the same thing. In New England, admission to freemanship usually replaced
naturalization and, although Massachusetts and New Hampshire limited free-
manship to Englishmen in 1664 and 1680, respectively, Connecticut and
Rhode Island did not. In both of these latter colonies, freedom was only
conditioned by the consent of municipal deputies, and it could indeed be
extended to aliens. Municipal authorities thus proceeded to integrate aliens,
and they considered that their admission to freedom or their long residence
made them worthy of the rights of Englishmen. In 1676 and 1678, New York
followed this vein. In other colonies, governors as well as local assemblies
assumed the right to grant denization and naturalization to aliens. They did so
by way of individual acts or by legislation. In 1669 and 1691, South Carolina
passed laws allowing domiciled aliens, upon their registration, to receive the
rights already enjoyed by settlers classied as subjects. Virginia and Pennsyl-
vania did the same soon after.
The metropolitan authorities in England fought to eliminate these practices
or to limit their effects. After the 1680s, and especially in the eighteenth cen-
tury, they repeatedly asserted that naturalization granted in the colonies was
valid only in the jurisdiction of the granting body. They insisted on making a
distinction between naturalization with a general effect, which was any natu-
ralization granted by the parliament, and naturalization with a limited effect,
which applied to naturalization granted in the Americas. Back in England,
different people and groups expressed a growing dissatisfaction with the exist-
ing naturalization regime, which had no clear rules and no clear procedures.
They demanded that the government adopt a general naturalization act to
make petition handling an administrative matter rather than an individual act
of sovereignty. In the debates that preceded the enactment of this legislation,
discussants reviewed different immigration policies and questioned whether
admitting aliens into the community would be benecial. Especially conten-
tious were the status of alien merchants and the desirability (or not) of their
integration. The population of the kingdom, the economic benets of the
enrollment, and its scal and religious implications were all considered. Ques-
tions of culture and loyalty were also mentioned. Could aliens ever abandon
their natural love to their place of origin and truly come to love the English
community? In response, some people afrmed that all Englishmen at some
186 Was Spain Exceptional?

stage of their past had been aliens, whereas others insisted on a true qualitative
difference between natives and aliens. At stake was also the question whether
society was made of free, rational, and autonomous individuals or whether it
was organic in nature, grounded in natural distinctions, and headed by a
paternalist monarch. Bills proposed in 1664, 1672, and 1694 were rejected.
A general naturalization act was passed in 1709, but it was repealed three
years later. This act promised all Protestants born outside royal allegiance
naturalization if they were willing to come and settle in England permanently,
pay a fee, take the sacraments, and swear allegiance to the monarch. Even-
tually, the rst permanent general naturalization act was passed in 1740. This
act, which covered only aliens residing in the colonies, stated that Protestants
born outside royal allegiance could be considered native Englishmen all over
the empire after they had lived in the colonies for seven years without a sub-
stantial absence. Similar privileges were extended in the next decades to alien
Protestants serving in the colonial armies.
Developments in English North America closed some of the gaps between
England and Spain. In both England and Spain, people who immigrated to the
New World maintained their status as subjects and natives. In English North
America as in Spain, a close relation existed between local integration and
the rights and privileges of natives. Similarly, both local communities were
willing to dene the rights of individuals with regard to the king and king-
dom. Yet, the English authorities reacted against these developments. To limit
their effects, they ruled that American naturalization was merely a local license
to enjoy the rights of an Englishmen. This had the effect of making North
American naturalization in English colonies equivalent to the Spanish Ameri-
can composicin. This naturalization allowed people to be treated de facto
as natives without transforming them into (true) natives; their rights and du-
ties were restricted to the jurisdiction of the granting body. Discussions lead-
ing to the enactment of general naturalization acts resonate with solutions
adopted in Spain. They adhered to the idea that people of the right religion
who established a permanent domicile in the jurisdiction were worthy of treat-
ment as natives. Yet they questioned their loyalty at the same time they af-
rmed the ability of people to change their nature and come to love their
adoptive community.

Indians and Africans

The status of Indians and Africans in English North America was highly
ambiguous. During the colonial period, Indian tribes were usually treated as
sovereign political communities and as alien nations. Tribes living under ef-
fective English jurisdiction and accepting subjection to the king enjoyed royal
Was Spain Exceptional? 187

protection yet remained external to the English community. Individual Indians

who left their tribes could theoretically merge into the English population
through their naturalization.
The status of Indians as foreigners persisted after the American Revolution.
Matters related to the Indians were classied as federal affairs, and treaties
concluded with several Indians tribes allowed their members to be collectively
naturalized. The degree to which Indian communities were indeed foreign
was nevertheless debated. For example, in 1831, Chief Justice John Marshall
of the U.S. Supreme Court argued that Indians formed part of domestic
dependent nations. There were also suggestions about creating a separate
Indian state to be added to the confederation, or allowing Indian tribes to elect
their own representatives to the U.S. Congress. Again, as individuals, Indians
could be naturalized. Born under allegiance to a foreign community (the In-
dian community), they needed to renounce their status as members of that
community before they could be admitted to the American one. Racial preju-
dices also operated, afrming that, independent of their correct legal classi-
cation, Indians were simply unt to be citizens.
In Spanish America, Indians were treated as vassals of the king and as
natives. Whether viewed as individuals or as members of groups, they were
never considered foreigners. This did not mean that they were treated with
equality. On the contrary, Indians were classied as minors in need of protec-
tion, and they were initially placed in special communities where Spaniards
could not reside. Nevertheless, theoretically at least, they would come of age
and become full members of the community. Their admission in the Spanish
community was afrmed in 1812, when the Cdiz constitution declared the
Indians and their mixed-blood offspring both Spaniards and Spanish citizens.
The status of freed Africans in English North America was also highly
ambiguous. On one hand, the rights of freed Africansinitially quite signi-
cantwere gradually restricted. Freed Africans were progressively excluded
from many privileges traditionally associated with citizenship, such as ofce
holding, voting, and serving on a jury. On the other, these restrictions arose
from local legislation and were more substantial in some places than in others.
This ambiguity permitted some freed Africans to claim rights as freeborn
subjects. It also allowed colonial authorities to promise freed Africans the
rights of English-born subjects under certain conditions as in 1765 when they
were invited to settle, for example, in Georgia. Yet on some occasions it was
specically stated that the discrimination against freed Africans was directly
tied to their being perceived as outsiders and was motivated by the belief that
they were unworthy of equal treatment.
The ambiguous status of freed Africans continued after the colonies gained
188 Was Spain Exceptional?

independence from England. In late eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century

America, it was often suggested that the general assumptions governing citi-
zenship allowed considering Africans as birthright citizens. This was the opin-
ion of several people engaged in legal and political debates in the 1820s and
1830s, who afrmed that freed Africans were neither aliens nor slaves, but
instead free citizens. According to their perceptions, freed Africans could not
be considered foreigners because they had been born under allegiance to the
same authority and because they enjoyed many rights and suffered many duties
attached to citizenship. Since there was no intermediary status between natives
and foreigners, if they were not foreigners, they were necessarily natives. Nev-
ertheless, other people argued that, despite their local birth and freedom,
individuals with any portion of African ancestry were not members of the
political community; they were either aliens or denizens. In this view, man-
umission was insufcient to acquire citizenship, and the state could tolerate the
presence of people who were neither natives nor aliens but instead subjects
or quasicitizens. The question remained open until the Civil War and, as in
the case of the Indians, the legal debate took place in a social reality of racism,
discrimination, and prejudice.
The status of Africans as foreigners, or semiforeigners was also adopted in
Spanish America, as was the assumption that Africans had to be treated dif-
ferently than other people. Indeed, conditions that in other cases would have
easily worked to convert foreigners into natives did not function in their case.
Africans, it was decided, either lacked the capacity or the will to become
natives. This situation persisted into the early nineteenth century. Because of
these perceptions, which operated alongside racial and ethnic prejudices, al-
though Africans were classied as Spaniards in 1812, they were not granted
Spanish citizenship.

Most studies on local citizenship in France indicate that until the four-
teenth century, citizenship (citadinage) was a condition given to inhabitants of
corporate towns (bourgs). With citizenship came local privileges and duties
and the right to hold public ofce. People who wanted to obtain this status
had to petition the local authorities and express their willingness to comply
with the obligations of citadinage. They were required to take an oath and to
make a deposit against their pledge to comply with duties, especially the duty
to buy or build a house within a year and a day. The French kings also created
a unied general citizenship regime by establishing the status of royal bour-
geois (burgesias regni nostri). This status was open to free single men and
women and to married couples. It implied the obligation to reside perma-
Was Spain Exceptional? 189

nently in a settlement unless legitimate reasons justied the petitioners ab-

sence. It allowed citizens to change their residence from one community to
another, but it prohibited them from having citizenship in two different com-
munities at the same time. Although the kings bourgeoisie were originally
citizens of royal jurisdictions, since status was attached to people and not
communities, the bourgeoisie who left royal towns and settled in efs of lords
could maintain this status. As direct dependents of the monarch, they were
protected by him and subjected to his courts.
The evolution of local citizenship practices in France after the fourteenth
century is mostly described either vaguely or by reference to Paris. In general,
by the early modern period the status of bourgeois became irrelevant. Al-
though citizenship petitions were still heard in a few cities, especially large
urban commercial centers such as Bordeaux, Lyon, and Marseilles, this was
the exception. In these cities, people could become bourgeois after they had
resided in the territory for a prolonged period with no substantial absence, and
once they demonstrated that they were capable of paying the local taxes, either
because they owned a house or because they were able to pay entrance fees.
In other French communities, the status of bourgeois was ill dened, and it
was seldom requested. In most of them, it no longer prescribed economic
advantages and was instead an honorary title void of practical implications,
one that was constituted independent of formal declarations. By the eigh-
teenth century, bourgeois status signaled a certain social and political distinc-
tion of belonging to the community. It was mainly granted by reputation to
members of the local elite, and it was associated with people living from their
rents, a fact that distinguished them from both nobles and workmen.
During the eighteenth century, royal intervention in municipal government
grew exponentially, and in 176465, a common regime was instituted in cities
and towns (bourgs and villes) throughout France. During this period, and
especially in large urban centers, residency became more important than cit-
izenship. In most cases, people wished to obtain the droit dhabitantage rather
than the rights of citizens because the former status was less expensive to
acquire and maintain. It required petitioning the local council for a lettre
dhabitant. These letters of residency allowed people to reside in the commu-
nity and permitted them to enjoy some of the privileges traditionally associ-
ated with citizenship. Most of these privileges, however, were civic rather than
political. Unlike citizens, inhabitants were excluded from participating in local
assemblies, and they could not vote or be elected to ofce.
This genealogy of local citizenship is largely conrmed by studies centered
on Paris. From the late sixteenth century through the seventeenth century,
Parisian heads of households residing with their families in the jurisdiction for
190 Was Spain Exceptional?

a year and paying taxes were eligible for citizenship. Paris, it was then argued,
was unique among French towns because it encouraged inward immigration
by allowing all integrated individuals to become bourgeois. The liberty of
Paris to dene its own community was nevertheless restricted. Because citizen-
ship allowed individuals to enjoy tax exemptions, the monarchy often wished
to control who the citizens were and pursued this goal through several paths:
by attempting to change the denition of citizenship, by applying a reduction-
ist interpretation to existing statutes, and by imposing rst the purchase of
letters of citizenship and then the elaboration of a public registry of bourgeois.
These measures were resented by the local authorities, who wanted to retain
control over the enrollment of citizens and who hoped for a more lax deni-
tion that would allow more people to become citizens and thus increase the
number paying the local municipal fees (boues et lanternes).
Parisian citizenship practices were modied considerably in the passage from
the Middle Ages to the early modern period. These modications were the
result of social, economic, and bureaucratic developments. As Paris changed
from a mainly commercial center into a highly complex court society, the
bourgeois gradually became identied with a small social sector that included
individuals of independent means (rentiers). This identication was linked
initially to the idea that people of independent means were capable of paying
local taxes. By the seventeenth century, however, this identication acquired a
social meaning. Tied to the increasing importance of bureaucrats and noblesse
de robe in the city on one hand, and to the growing economic power of the
rentier class on the other, citizenship became associated with a certain type of
urban nobility. This association was also hastened by the fact that the rights of
citizens and nobles became quite similar. At the end of this process, citizenship
implied a certain lifestyle that excluded all those engaged in manual labor or in
commercial activity. It thus became divorced from its original constituency,
the merchants.
The distinction between merchants and citizens was publicly acknowledged
in 1701, when, for tax purposes, merchants were subjected to the lieutenant
general of the police, while citizens were placed under the jurisdiction of city
ofcials. It was again conrmed in 1714, when the royal courts stated that in
order to enjoy tax exemptions as bourgeois, individuals needed to comply
with four requirements: reside in Paris at least seven months a year, cultivate
nothing by hand except their land and vineyards, sell none other then the fruits
of their land, and do nothing to degrade the status of citizen. In 1721 and
1738, these perceptions of citizenship were again invoked when it was de-
clared that, as people living from rents, retired merchants and their widows
should be included in the tax rolls among citizens rather than merchants.
Was Spain Exceptional? 191

By that time, many Parisians were no longer interested in acquiring citizen-

ship. Foremost among these disinterested persons were royal bureaucrats,
whose status and privileges by virtue of ofce were more ample and more
important than those they could possess by virtue of citizenship.
Local citizenship practices in France and Castile differed dramatically. As
was the case in Italy, in early modern France citizenship became an honorary
title that was linked to the possession of important economic means and to the
practice of a certain lifestyle. It became the status of the few and privileged. As
citizenship was gradually dissociated from residence and integration, a new
regime had to be invented to regulate residence. These developments were very
different from developments in Castile, where until the end of the Old Regime
citizenship was a condition that implied certain rights and duties. In Castile,
citizenship was granted to individuals of all qualities and all economic means
as long as they were independent heads of households. No parallel regime of
residency emerged. If any similarity existed between Spain and France, it was
mainly with respect to the way Castilian citizenship was implemented in Span-
ish America. In Spanish America, as in France, citizenship was emptied of
many of its practical implications. In both realms it became an honorary title,
linked to reputation.
The relation between local citizenship and the community of the kingdom in
France was highly complex. Most French communities denied aliens the right
of citizenship. Although in Marseilles and Lyon aliens could become citizens,
their admission to the municipal community was insufcient for their natural-
ization. This inability of French communities to admit foreigners was ex-
plained by reference to royal sovereignty. According to most historians of
France, by the sixteenth century the subjection of local communities to the
king was complete. Instead of a territory composed of different local commu-
nities, France became a kingdom. One consequence of this development was
that the status and rights of people were no longer determined by reference to
their local membership. Instead, they were determined by their relationship
with the monarch. Letters of citizenship (lettres de bourgeois) gave way to
letters of naturalization (lettres de naturalisation) and the term aubain, which
during the Middle Ages denoted all outsiders, now specically designated
foreigners to the kingdom. Because of this process the king obtained a monop-
oly over the classication of people as natives or foreigners, which had earlier
been exercised by local communities, and he gained control over alien prop-
erty (droit daubain), which earlier had belonged to local lords.
This royal monopoly on the composition of communities was unknown in
Castile, where local communities could admit foreigners to citizenship and,
by extension, to nativeness. The king never achieved a monopoly over the
192 Was Spain Exceptional?

classication of people as natives or foreigners as this classication took place

automatically and without his intervention. Yet, however substantial these
differences might be, there are some indications that even in France local
integration was essential to the assimilation of foreigners also as members of a
larger, kingdomwide community. Claudine Billot afrmed in the past that this
assimilation was social rather than legal and political, and that it operated
only on a local level and independent of the state. Yet the proof she supplies
is found in legislation rather than in actual practice. Furthermore, Billot ac-
knowledges that most letters of citizenship and naturalization were granted to
members of elite groups, and that most other foreigners and aliens obtained
status (and enjoyed rights and complied with duties) independently of them.
Her description thus suggests that practices in France may not have been
radically different from practices in Spain.
The distinction between natives (rgnicole) and foreigners (aubains) had
many practical implications in France. Most important among them was the
inability of foreigners to bequeath or inherit estates (droit daubain). As a
result of this inability, upon their death or the death of their loved ones, the
estates of foreigners passed to the king. The relation between inheritance and
Frenchness was such that, according to Marguerite Vanel, individuals were
classied or declassied as French according to contemporary perceptions
about who should or should not inherit. Instead of allowing Frenchmen to
inherit, those whom the magistrates considered worthy of an estate were even-
tually recognized as French. Over the years, the French monarchs gradually
exempted many individuals or groups of individuals from the droit daubain.
These exemptions were expressed in particular acts, in laws, and in interna-
tional treaties, and they targeted individuals by virtue of their occupation,
place of residence, or origin. As a result of their enactment, the ability to use
inheritance as a marker distinguishing French from foreigners substantially
diminished, as did royal revenues from the droit daubain. Nevertheless, the
droit daubain persisted. It became endowed mainly with a symbolic meaning:
it now marked the sovereignty of the king and it designated the precarious
frontier between natives and foreigners.
Historians agree that for the purpose of inheritance a person was French if
he or she resided in the territory and had been born there to at least one French
parent. This denition required the combination of two conditions: descent
and birth in the territory. Descent was usually proved by employing presump-
tions and reputation rather than supplying hard facts. Although some candi-
dates presented their baptismal records and marriage certicates, most people
invoked their public image and the public image of their parents. Birth in the
territory was equally proved by supplying documents or by public renown. On
Was Spain Exceptional? 193

occasions, it required dening the exact extent of French territories, which

were usually identied as those under royal jurisdiction. This meant that
the boundaries of the community could vary according to territorial gains
or losses. Once territories were lost, their natives who were formerly French
became foreigners and once territories were gained, individuals who were for-
merly foreign became French. People born under royal allegiance were there-
fore French, and they could maintain this condition if they came to France
when the territory where they were born changed hands. In the French case,
even people born in territories claimed by the French king but not currently
under his actual domination could be considered French. The same happened
with people born in French colonies, who, independent of their genealogy,
were considered French natives and were eligible to inherit property.
Another condition for Frenchness was religion. It was assumed that the
French community was Catholic and that only Catholics could become French
natives. Nevertheless, recent research indicates that the naturalization of Prot-
estants continued after the revocation of the Edict of Nante in 1685, and that
in some cases at least, Jews could be naturalized.
The idea that Frenchness depended on birth in a certain territory was ini-
tially linked to the belief that individuals loved the land where they were born.
But after the French kings ascertained their sovereignty, the importance of
birth diminished. Progressively, emphasis was shifted from territoriality to
subjecthood and from community to king. In the sixteenth and especially the
seventeenth century, individuals who left the kingdom and their sonseven if
born abroadcould maintain their Frenchness as long as they continued to
subject themselves to the king. It was then argued that immigration did not
justify the conversion of French persons into aliens. This conversion could
only take place when a French native living outside France made a deliberate
decision to obey another lord. The legal assumption was that he never did. By
denition, immigrants always had an esprit de retour. Initially, proof to the
contrary could be admitted, demonstrating that in specic cases individuals
did abandon their allegiance to the king. Legal presumptions could be in-
voked, arguing that accepting employment by a foreign government or being
naturalized in a foreign jurisdiction demonstrated that the immigrant indeed
wanted to severe his ties with the king and with France. The establishment of
domicile was also deemed important, and many argued that a person who
established a domicile in another jurisdiction where he wished to remain per-
manently implicitly abandoned his allegiance to the king. Yet the ability to rely
on domicile was questioned. Domicile, it was argued, was accidental while
allegiance and blood ties were permanent.
As a result of these perceptions, by the mid-seventeenth century the ability
194 Was Spain Exceptional?

to argue against the esprit de retour diminished substantially. It was under

these circumstances that Frenchness was portrayed as a quality that could not
be lost without an explicit declaration ending the subjection to the king. Also
during this period it was determined that sons of immigrants should not be
punished by their parents betrayal. Even if born abroad, they could be
considered native French if they proved their allegiance to the monarch. A
proper and common proof was the decision to return to France, especially if it
were made before the ability to inherit came under legal scrutiny. The only
exception to this rule was the status of sons of French merchants married to
foreigners born abroad. During the eighteenth century, these offspring were
increasingly classied as foreigners because it was assumed that by marrying a
foreigner their fathers had dissociated themselves from the French community.
Theoretically, in question was their allegiance to France. In practice, however,
equally important were French commercial policies aimed at pressuring use-
ful merchants to return to France.
Unlike the French community, the community of Spanish natives was not a
community of allegiance. Territorial gains and losses did not automatically
modify its extension, nor was it expanded by royal claims to territories not
under actual royal control. Despite these differences, several elements were
common to France and Spain. Both communities required their natives be
Catholic, although it appears that this rule was more closely observed in Spain
than in France. In both communities, natives could become foreigners and
foreigners natives. The conversion of people from one status to the other
depended on similar factors and on similar presumptions that linked behavior
to intention. Accordingly, membership in the community of the kingdom de-
pended on what people wanted. Nevertheless, the key question in France was
the wish to preserve or abandon allegiance to the monarch; in Spain the prob-
lem hinged on intention to continue or sever the association with the commu-
nity. In France, the assumption was that people who were no longer in resi-
dence did not want to change their status; in Spain the contrary was true.
Another point common to both Spain and France was the adherence to
categories and ideas elaborated by ius commune jurists. In both countries,
these categories and ideas clashed with royal wishes that often perceived natu-
ralization as a royal prerogative. In France, foreigners who wanted to be
naturalized had to petition the crown, and the royal chancellery could issue
letters of naturalization after the Chambre des Comptes (the royal court re-
sponsible for supervising the droit daubain) reviewed the petition. In princi-
ple, foreigners who wanted to obtain their naturalization had to have resided
in France for a certain period and possess real estate. These factors served as
proof that they intended to remain in France permanently. Two types of natu-
Was Spain Exceptional? 195

ralization existed. The rst allowed foreigners to become citizens in the munic-
ipality where they resided. The second truly naturalized them and was either
limited to the right to inherit or to enjoy ecclesiastical beneces, or it admitted
foreigners to all rights and privileges of natives.
Despite the existence of these formal criteria, the French kings insisted that
naturalization was a discretionary act. The tension between Roman law doc-
trines focused on alien integration and royal prerogatives that included the
right to an aliens estate was constantly present. French jurists argued that
foreigners who were integrated in the kingdom had the right to receive natu-
ralization, yet even they understood that this right could be restricted by the
king. Furthermore, although foreigners had to be formally naturalized before
they were admitted to the rights of Frenchmen, in some cases at least, even the
king recognized that certain foreigners could automatically convert into na-
tives, as was the case in Spain. This happened, for example, in 1715 with
foreign soldiers who had resided in the kingdom for a sufcient length of
time. The tension between integration and royal sovereignty also existed in
reference to other practices. As in Spain, the French king could favor for-
eigners who were royal servants and could grant them naturalization despite
the fact that they were not integrated into the kingdom. But unlike circum-
stances in Spain, the French kings could declare that certain foreigners would
be treated as natives only in certain prescribed ways without ever granting
them naturalization. For example, during the seventeenth and eighteenth cen-
turies, foreigners could obtain exemption of droit daubainequating them,
de facto, to nativesby virtue of specic royal grants. Such exemptions were
granted to groups of benecial foreigners, such as merchants coming to fairs
and natives of allied countries who enjoyed the protection of international
treaties. These exemptions were also granted to individuals and to French
cities. Although they enjoyed the most important right of nativenessthe
right to inheritforeigners beneting from these exemptions were still con-
sidered alien. The same was true with regard to ofce holding. In France, yet
not in Spain, foreigners could obtain royal letters allowing them to be em-
ployed in ofces and beneces ordinarily reserved for natives without this
permit implying their naturalization.
It was also the case in France that letters of naturalization and even birth in
the territory could fail to transform foreigners into natives. On different occa-
sions during the seventeenth century, for example, alien taxation was levied on
true foreigners, naturalized foreigners, and native French who descended
from foreign families. Stressing the foreignness of these individuals, many of
whom were legally French, these decrees explained that their taxation was
justied because the presence of foreigners on French soil was profoundly
196 Was Spain Exceptional?

illegal and because foreigners usurped the privileges of natives. Following

this logic, in 1769, campaigns to distinguish true natives from actual (and
legal) foreigners were launched. In these campaigns, locally appointed com-
missioners cataloged people as foreigners according to their local reputation.
Despite the existence of a kingdom, as many as 40 percent of those identied
as foreigners were Frenchmen originating from another French jurisdiction
whose foreignness, in the eyes of their neighbors, was as real as the foreignness
of people born outside royal allegiance.
Periodically, the liberty of the king to act as he pleased was questioned in
France. Some early modern writers agreed that the kingdom was a community
of allegiance and that both nativeness and naturalization established, rst and
foremost, a relationship with the king. Others on the contrary insisted, espe-
cially in the eighteenth century, that France was also a community of natives
living under a single legal regime. According to them, nativeness and natural-
ization mainly embodied a relationship between particular individuals and the
community. They even suggested that the ability to inherit must be distin-
guished from both nativeness and naturalization. Inheritance was a question
of private law, whereas nativeness and naturalization dened the rights of
individuals vis--vis the state and the crown. The ofcers of the Chambre de
Comptes joined in this discussion. In the late seventeenth and eighteenth cen-
turies they occasionally refused to register the naturalization of foreigners
exempted from the residence requirement. They revised the contents of royal
decrees ordering the naturalization of foreigners, and they veried the circum-
stances of each petitioner. They perceived naturalization as a pact between a
foreigner and the state, and they determined that this pact depended on the
foreigners relationship not only with the king but also with the community.
In both Spain and France, the principles of ius commune allowed jurists and
royal ofcials to argue in favor of naturalization by integration, and against
naturalization at the sole discretion of the king. Yet in the Spanish case, ius
commune was presented as a natural law, and it was invoked extensively not
only by jurists and ofcials but also by individuals, municipalities, merchants,
and merchant guilds. Indeed, the struggle against royal naturalization policies
seems to have been more successful in Spain than in France. This could be
partially explained by the different point of departure. In Spain, local commu-
nities could admit foreigners and convert them also into natives. In France,
this was not possible; to admit foreigners local communities had to secure
royal license. In Spain, communities closely monitored the naturalization ac-
tivities of the king, and protested against them. In France, at least according to
existing literature, such was not the case, and the king enjoyed the right to
grant ofces to foreigners at his sole discretion.
Was Spain Exceptional? 197

Spanish Exceptionalism: Conclusions

Seventeenth- and eighteenth-century Spaniards were convinced that
their practices were natural and universal. According to them, citizenship and
nativeness were the automatic reection of a higher truth dictated by God.
Comparison with practices in Italy, England, and France demonstrates that
contemporaneous European society did not share the exact same practices, at
least not to the degree Spaniards believed. There were many similarities be-
tween Italian and Spanish municipal citizenship. Yet citizenship in Italy was
not as pervasive as it was in Spain, and its practice never conformed to a clear
common pattern as it did in Spain. In Naples at least, some progress was made
towards the creation of a kingdomwide community. Yet, this community was
often mistakenly equated with the local community, from which it never
gained a true independence. Like Spanish litigants, French jurists adapted ius
commune doctrines to the realm of the state; however, instead of insisting on
the integration of newcomers in the community, they stressed allegiance to the
monarch. Instead of linking local citizenship to membership in the community
of the kingdom by making citizenship a necessary step in communal con-
struction, they recreated the kingdom without reference to the municipal
sphere. In the process, local communities lost much of their power to dene
their own members, and, among other things, they lost the ability to admit
aliens as citizens unless they obtained a special grant from the crown. Because
of these developments, the typical foreigner (aubain) in France was a perma-
nent resident; in Spain a person meeting the same criteria would be classied as
a native.
In England, a variety of practices emerged that stressed the power of com-
mercial corporations in the municipal realm and the sovereignty of the king in
the kingdom. Despite these apparent differences, English common law doc-
trines were not as alien to Spanish practices as it might be initially suspected.
Similarities were especially noteworthy during the eighteenth century, when
English freedom, like Spanish liberty, was equated with the birthright of all
natives and was associated with a kingdomwide rather than a local regime.
Similarities between developments in the English colonies and Spanish Amer-
ica were also great. In the English colonies, the distinction between the munici-
pal and the English community was not as clear as it was in England, and the
establishment of a domicile could transform aliens into natives. This transfor-
mation could take place on the municipal level, on the company level, or after
1740, on an empirewide scale. All of these traits were present in Spain but
were especially prominent in Spanish America. Other similarities between
Spain and England also existed. Spanish and English cities both participated in
198 Was Spain Exceptional?

discussions concerning the naturalization of foreigners and lobbied for certain

solutions. But Spanish municipalities intervened in these processes directly by
naturalizing foreigners and indirectly by voting against (or in favor) of the
naturalization of foreigners by the king. In England, local communities could
only intervene indirectly. They participated in public debates, and by the eigh-
teenth century they expected their representatives to vote in parliament in
favor of one solution or the other. In both England and Spanish America, the
role of merchants and mercantile interests was important and, in both of them,
merchant gilds were able to exert an enormous, although in some ways infor-
mal, inuence over the denition of the community. But while the power of
Spanish guilds was mainly exercised in cases concerning nonnative aliens, the
power of English gilds was mainly applied in questions of local citizenship
(freedom). Last but not least, both England and Spain maintained regimes that
extended the metropolitan citizenship laws to the colonies yet allowed for the
ongoing development of different practices in the New World. This diversity
was especially clear with regard to the status of naturalized foreigners, whose
naturalization in the colonies did not necessarily guarantee their treatment as
natives in European Spain and England. England, however, wished to close its
doors to foreigners in Europe but pursued a more open policy in the colonies,
whereas Spain wanted to achieve exactly the opposite.
Beyond the specic nature of each case and the details of each country, all
four examples coincided on several issues. In Italy, France, England, and
Spain, communal construction was often described by reference to a dis-
course of love that acknowledged peoples heartfelt attachment to their com-
munity of birth and to their sovereign; they were required to obtain love of
their new surroundings if they wished to become members of a new commu-
nity or subjects of a new monarch. Residence and tax payment were presump-
tions that gave proof of love and allowed the community to trust the new-
comers. Reputation and the passage of time fullled the same role. They en-
abled communities to comprehend (or assume to comprehend) the nature of
the relationship that now linked individuals to the collectivity. It was in the axis
between natural love and free choice, determinism and liberty, preference for
natives and equality for immigrants that naturalization policies were debated
and measures were taken, in both local communities and in the kingdoms of
Italy, England, France, and Spain. Under these circumstances, those wishing to
encourage immigration insisted that all members of the community were once
foreigners, and those opposing it claimed that the contrary was true.
In all four countries efforts were continuously made to strike a balance
between authority and community, king and people, municipality and resi-
dents. This effort was expressed in the constant interplay between local and
Was Spain Exceptional? 199

global and between municipal statutes and kingdomwide laws. Although local
laws that dened both citizenship and naturalization existed in all jurisdic-
tions, these laws were matched by other systems that were just as efcient in
dening members. Whether called common law, Roman law, ius commune, or
simply natural law, these other systems were external to both municipal and
royal control. They were part of a communal heritage and were characterized
as ancient, widely held, and universally applicable. They operated to modify
local and regal arrangements, and without ever being formally adopted, they
were essential to the construction of communities and to the denition of their
The tension between authority and community in Italy, France, England,
and Spain was also expressed in the existence of citizenship and naturalization
by local and customary law on one hand, and citizenship and naturalization
by sovereign act on the other. Citizenship and naturalization by law expressed
local customs and local legal traditions, which represented the community and
its ancient constitution, which had preceded the installation of authorities
and the king. Citizenship and naturalization by sovereign act allowed the
authorities, whether local or royal, to act on the margin or even in opposition
to legal arrangements. Invoking the power to naturalize by at allowed the
authorities to ignore the community and to assert that they were not subject to
its laws.
In spite of these similarities, Spain was indeed exceptional in the vigor of its
local citizenship during the eighteenth century. Evidence from Italy, England,
and France suggests that local communities in these countries gradually lost or
surrendered their ability to impose a citizenship regime. Eventually, member-
ship in the community became a social or honorary title, void of immediate
practical implications. In Spain, although not in Spanish America, local com-
munities continued to examine the citizenship status of inhabitants and to
insist on the application of a regime that discriminated against noncitizens.
Also in Spain, people continued to refer to themselves as citizen and noncitizen
and to consider themselves rst and foremost members of local communities
and only secondarily as part of a kingdomwide association.
Another (related) point of Spanish exceptionalism was Spanish resistance to
royal sovereignty and the inability of royal interests to recast Spain as a com-
munity of allegiance. Evidence suggests that in both early modern England
and France the community of the kingdom was gradually identied with the
monarch and the centralizing state. This identication allowed royal bureau-
crats to modify the denition of the community according to territorial gains
and losses and according to dynastic unity and dynastic inheritance. It per-
mitted English jurists to ignore the composite nature of the state and overlook
200 Was Spain Exceptional?

a constitutional reality of a multiplicity of kingdoms, each with its own laws

and institutions. In both Spain and Spanish America, royal efforts to do the
same were only partially successful. The authority of the king in issues of
naturalization was indeed strengthened during the eighteenth century, yet the
power of municipalities to naturalize foreigners, and the idea that integrated
foreigners could automatically became natives, persisted to the liberal revolu-
tion (180814) and beyond. The transfer from citizenship to naturalization,
from local to national, as described in France and as operative in England,
never took place in Spain. Local citizenship and naturalization continued to be
closely associated with one another, and foreignness still operated on both the
local and the kingdom level.
The sovereignty of Spanish kings was limited in other respects as well. Until
the end of the eighteenth century, the Spanish parliament and the cities with a
vote in parliament continued to exert at least some control over the kings
power to naturalize foreigners. Just as limited was the ability of Spanish kings
to create a single community of natives in Spain. Although such a community
existed in the New World from the late sixteenth century, its success in Euro-
pean Spain was only partial. Even after the nueva planta decrees (170616),
the Spanish community was, at least in some respects, a composed commu-
nity. Natives of Majorca still held the monopoly on ofce holding in their
community, and they were likewise excluded from beneces in Spain; Cas-
tilians could occupy ofces in Catalonia only by virtue of a ction that main-
tained that they were collectively naturalized. Last but not least, Spanish prac-
tices never denied people the right to change their community because of their
permanent and unalterable allegiance to the monarch, as was the case in
England and France. On the contrary, Spanish debates afrmed again and
again that people could migrate to or depart from the community and in doing
so recreate themselves anew. There was no presumption of an esprit de retour
as in France and no obligation to continue under royal allegiance as in England.

Conclusions and Afterthoughts

In February 2001, Spanish television aired a mock newscast staged by a

comedy puppet troupe. It presented Spains minister of the interior on board a
helicopter. Looking down at boats carrying immigrants trying to reach the
Spanish coastline and illegally enter the country, he ordered the good immi-
grants who wanted to work and integrate into Spain to stay on the boats. He
then instructed the bad immigrants, those who wanted to commit crimes, to
jump in the water and disappear. The same idea was expressed years earlier in
a pop song that invited immigrants to integrate into Spain. The song suggested
that immigrants are welcomed to Spain with their eyes, dances, and lips that
promise kisses, but it rejected those who come with smoke that does not
allow to breathe, with anger and bad dreams. Although the newscast and
song represented the feeling of many both inside and outside Spain, they left
unsolved the problem of how to distinguish good immigrants from bad, and
who has the authority to make this decision. It also failed to address the
problem of how in the process of distinguishing good from bad immigrants the
receiving society denes itself by establishing its criteria of membership and
xing its boundaries.
The question of which immigrants should be accepted and which should not
was also important to early modern Spaniards. The distinction between cit-
izens and noncitizens, natives and foreigners was ultimately presented as an

202 Conclusions and Afterthoughts

opposition between goodwilled people who were integrated into the commu-
nity, wished to remain in it permanently, and were willing to comply with its
duties and bad-intentioned people who did not. These latter were transients
who refused to tie themselves permanently to the community, who avoided
integration into it, and who wished only to benet from privileges.
The distinction between good and bad people was reproduced on all levels.
It rst appeared in Castilian and Spanish American local communities, and by
the seventeenth century, it operated throughout the realm of the kingdom of
Castile and in the Spanish kingdoms. This distinction originally dened atti-
tudes towards immigration, yet it eventually constructed notions of member-
ship and belonging. Independent of their origin and place of birth, in order to
qualify as members, people had to be want to be members, to act as members,
and to comply with duties. These requirements were applied to both new-
comers and the native born, yet those born into a community usually enjoyed
a presumption of goodwill. Although they did not receive a truly differential
treatment, on a day-to-day basis, social norms and understandings that rarely
questioned their status protected their standing. This lack of conict made the
condition of native born as both citizens and natives appear automatic. How-
ever, such was not the case. Native-born persons could be required to prove
that they were good if and when their condition came under scrutiny. There-
fore it should not surprise us that the distinction between good and bad im-
migrants was determinant in the construction of the category of Spaniard
and Spanish citizen as dened in the rst Spanish constitution (1812). Nor
should it surprise us that, in Spanish America, the same distinction was helpful
to the elaboration of a Creole discourse that eventually justied the break with
Spain and the formation of new states and nations.
The distinction between good and bad immigrants allowed the easy inclu-
sion of foreign Catholics to the community, and it provided a means of ex-
plaining the rejection of other people who were classied as bad. The classi-
cation of people as good or bad depended on the identities of the parties and
their interests and on the circumstances of place and time. It was linked to the
willingness to presume the presence of goodwill or to demand that candidates
supply ample proof of their situation and intentions. In some cases people
classied as badfor example, the Chueta, the Gypsies, and Spaniards of
African decentwere different in ethnicity, race, and customs from most
other citizens and natives. Yet even though discussants recognized the impor-
tance of these differences, their exclusion was still argued by reference to their
quality as bad. This quality did not truly depend on individual behavior but
was a byproduct of membership in a group to which Spanish society attributed
certain intentions and certain ways of being.
Conclusions and Afterthoughts 203

This differential treatment resulted in some people acting as citizens and

natives without their status being questioned or veried, while others had to
ght for recognition. For some, these challenges were random and singular;
others were scrutinized again and again. A discourse focused on integration,
and one that apparently allowed people to become members by virtue of their
decision and their decision alone, could thus justify exclusion. Indeed, as the
eighteenth century drew to a close, it became increasingly clear that either
people acted as citizens and Spaniards or they lost the right to remain in local
communities and, by extension, in Spain.
Apparent agreement on criteria did not mask real differences in their ap-
plication. Individuals, collectivities, and authorities could disagree about what
good and bad meant and who should be classied in which way. This
disagreement confronted real actors with real interests, possibilities, desires,
and fears. These actors engaged in long and often tedious discussions in which
they attempted to discover, but also to construct and imagine, the intentions
of their fellowmen. This process of discovery had formal rules and ceremonial
procedures, but it also depended on the interests at stake, the capacity of the
parties to negotiate or impose their views, and the dynamics among several
actors. Commonsense assumptions, ideas about justice, and perceptions of the
common good were also important. Under circumstances of disagreement,
identifying the authority that could decide on these issues became crucial. Yet
in seventeenth- and eighteenth-century Spain and Spanish America no such
authority existed. Citizenship and nativeness were generated on their own by
the mere fact that people acted and were allowed to act as members. In most
cases, no ofcial recognition followed, and there was no nal arbiter who
could decide who was worthy of which treatment. Written law gave some
indication as to how these processes should happen, the courts intervened
when requested to do so by the parties, and municipal and royal authorities
voted in favor of one solution or the other. Nevertheless, the question of who
was good and who was bad could never be resolved conclusively. No single
authority could decide it; it was negotiated socially, in day-to-day interactions,
and depended on reputation and on changing circumstances. Rather than a
status, citizenship and nativeness were a situation. They crystallized in a cer-
tain moment and were lost in another.
Over the years, different individuals and groups in both Spain and Spanish
America expressed frustration with this situation. According to them, the
Spanish regime did not obtain a sufcient guarantee that people who enjoyed
the rights of membership would also comply with the corresponding duties.
First in Spanish Americabecause of the alleged need to protect the commu-
nity from greedy newcomersand then in Spainbecause of the desire that
204 Conclusions and Afterthoughts

permanent residents would comply with membership obligationsthese indi-

viduals and groups called for the institution of formal procedures and perma-
nent classications. Yet until the early nineteenth century and probably be-
yond, in both Spain and Spanish America a regime of legality dening citizens
and nationals failed to emerge. Discussions in 1812 in Cdiz demonstrated
that the categories adopted by the rst Spanish constitution continued to rely
on reputation: that is, they continued to classify people by reference to their
activities as comprehended and measured by the other members of the com-
munity. The same was true to with regard to the Creole discourse, which
dened people as members of the Spanish American commonwealth.
In Castile, Spain, and Spanish America, citizenship and nativeness depended
on social negotiation and on an ongoing conversation among different actors,
local groups, and even royal agencies. Rather than imposed from above, the
distinction between citizens and noncitizens, natives and foreigners came from
below. It was a byproduct of the activities of people and groups ghting to
defend their interests and to best protect what they argued was the common
good. These people and groups might have not been interested in xing immi-
gration policies or in dening the boundaries of their community. Neverthe-
less, their activities did both. State and king were to a large degree external to
these processes. In the normal course of things, people became citizens and
natives, or lost their status as such, without any ofcial intervention. Royal
and municipal authorities intervened only when the members of the commu-
nity failed to negotiate these arrangements on their own. Unable to control the
economics of the Spanish American trade, Spanish monopolist merchants de-
manded the assistance of the state to distinguish natives from foreigners and to
expel the latter from Spanish America. Not only did they initiate these classi-
cations and insist on their faithful application, the monopolist merchants
also prompted the states action by elaborating lists of foreigners and by ap-
pearing in the courts and supplying proofs and arguments. At the same time,
these merchants rejected the intervention of the state when royal organs
claimed the right to decide who the foreigners were, or to convert them into
natives. While the royal administration helped the merchants by guaranteeing
protection of commerce, the monopolist merchants aided the administration
by allowing its intervention in some cases, by recognizing its authority, and by
helping it implement certain measures. Mercantile activity also forced the
royal administration to rene and clarify its position, for example, with regard
to the differences between naturalization by integration and by royal letter.
The same dynamics was also present in Spain: local communities requested
the help of royal courts when they disagreed with candidates about their
correct classication. Royal intervention in these cases of unresolvable conict
Conclusions and Afterthoughts 205

was justied and legitimateand was even requested by individuals, groups,

corporations, and local communitiesin all other cases it was not. The au-
thorities, it was endlessly argued, did not create the community but simply
administered it. Therefore, while naturalization by integration was natural,
letters of naturalization were articial. While naturalization by integration
was a regular practice, letters of naturalization were extraordinary grants.
They conrmed royal sovereignty precisely because they ignored law and
custom and because they modied the community in ways that were otherwise
Looking at ofcial records and the legislation in order to examine the cit-
izenship and nativeness of people is therefore insufcient. These records only
include the minority of cases that provoked debate and they only describe how
a person should be treated in a given moment governed by the existence of a
specic set of circumstances. In the vast majority of cases, on the contrary,
individuals were subject to classication by people around them in day-to-day
interactions. This classication was social rather than legal, implicit rather
than formal. Belonging to a local community or to the community of the
kingdom allowed individuals to enjoy the rights allocated to members; enjoy-
ing these rights automatically converted foreigners into citizens and natives.
Rather than an aberration, the transformation of people in this way was
considered natural. Society was not governed by man-made law, nor was it
truly controlled by the authorities. It was organic, and it experienced natural
processes of inclusion and exclusion.
The study of vecindad and naturaleza thus demonstrates the degree to
which the early modern state, at least in Spain and Spanish America, was far
from commanding or engineering society. Rather than imposed from above,
pressures from below generated vecindad and naturaleza. Rather than being
identied in law and legislation, vecindad and naturaleza were dened by
social practices applied by individuals, groups of individuals, and corpora-
tions. These called upon the local authorities and the king to intervene only on
certain occasions; intervention was rejected at other times. The interplay be-
tween the state and local communities, authorities and individuals, implicit
and formal categorizations demonstrates that rather than communities creat-
ing a state, or states creating communities, it was the dynamic relation be-
tween one and the other that mutually constructed both.
From the perspective of vecindad and naturaleza, the Spanish communities,
as well as Spain, were neither a natural phenomenon nor an articial cre-
ation. They were continuously constructed by a multiplicity of agents working
to defend particular interests, yet through this process constructing a commu-
nity. Individual engagement in xing communal boundaries both constituted
206 Conclusions and Afterthoughts

and conrmed these boundaries. Centralized state structures legitimized the

privileges and duties discussed and helped to impose them. Yet the conserva-
tion, meaning, and application of these privileges and duties depended on
social interaction and day-to-day encounters between individuals and corpo-
rations with similar or contrasting interests. The community that emerged in
consequence was a social and not an institutional or a legal creation. It de-
pended on a complex relation between interests and norms, individual agency,
and social and theoretical constraints. It was in this nexus between legal
arrangements and their instrumentalization, state mechanisms and private
initiatives, local arrangements and kingdomwide solutions, everyday inter-
actions and larger issues that eighteenth-century Spanish communities and
Spain came into existence.
The implementation of the categories vecindad and naturaleza also demon-
strate that, in Spain and Spanish America at least, there was no inherent
opposition between local communities and the community of the kingdom.
Invoking human law arrangements and natural law doctrines, individuals,
local communities, and merchants insisted that integration was the principle
mechanism that allowed individuals to enjoy rights. Because integration was
always carried out within the connes of the specic local community where
one settled, owned a house, and demonstrated in other ways that one sought
and deserved membership, it was through their adhesion to local communities
that people, both native born and immigrants, became eligible to rights in both
the local community and the community of the kingdom. This association
between local membership and kingdomwide membership was clear in Span-
ish America in the seventeenth century, and it was formally declared in Spain
in the eighteenth century when local citizenshipattained either by formal
letters of citizenship or through activities as a citizenwas instituted as a
mechanism also allowing the naturalization of foreigners. At the end of this
process, a general regime of citizenship and naturalization was created in
Spain and Spanish America without excluding local denitions and without
truly limiting the power of local communities to dene the kingdom and its
natives. Royal attempts to transform this conglomerate of local communities
into a single kingdom and then a single Spain, and to reduce the complex rela-
tionship between citizenship and nativeness into a simple relationship of vas-
salage and subjection, mostly failed. Until the end of the Old Regime and in
both Spain and Spanish America, individual municipal communities contin-
ued to be essential participants in the denition of both natives and subjects.
Nineteenth-century Spain and Spanish American states thus inherited a
strong localism that recognized at the same time that larger structures, such as
kingdoms, also existed. Through integration in a locality, one became by ex-
Conclusions and Afterthoughts 207

tension a member of the kingdom. This heritage privileged social classication

over legal denitions and constituted society as a body autonomous of govern-
ment and responsible, among other things, for identifying people as insiders
and outsiders. It looked with suspicion at the intervention of the state, and it
embodied a conviction that local society can and must regulate itself. This
heritage stressed social consensus regarding a few basic premises, yet it al-
lowed for acute conicts regarding their interpretation. Embracing the ideal of
freedom of immigration, it demanded conformity and argued that either inte-
gration is complete, or it does not exist at all.
Many of these factors might have been particular to Spain and Spanish
America, yet there are many indications that similarities between them and
practices in Italy, France, and England might have been greater than recog-
nized by the current literature. Integration was an important element also in
Italy, France, and England, and in all of them a common and often unwritten
law coexisted with formal legal arrangements. There was some relation in all
three countries between local denitions of membership and kingdomwide
categories of belonging. There were also clear indications that status depended
on social interaction as much as it depended on laws and formal denitions.
The reading of Spanish history from Spanish America and vice versa dem-
onstrates that the one cannot be understood without the other. Castile ex-
ported to the New World many of its practices. Implemented in the Americas,
these practices underwent important modications. These modications re-
ected the American reality as much as they revealed the potentialities inher-
ent to the practices themselves. The operation of the Castilian citizenship
regime in Spanish America, for example, seems more natural and more in tune
with Castilian theory and its implications than its operation in Castile. On
occasion, developments in the New World preceded similar developments in
Spain. A community of natives of the kingdoms of Spain appeared in Spanish
America in the late sixteenth century but in Spain only at the beginning of the
eighteenth century. The same happened with the identication between cit-
izenship and domicile and citizenship and nativeness. Both were crucial fac-
tors in eighteenth-century Spain, yet indications for their existence were al-
ready present in seventeenth-century Spanish America. Spanish American
practices were also revealing because authorities and litigants involved in their
implementation often explained their understanding of the nature and mean-
ing of Old World practices in order to distinguish them from those of the
New World. Consensual and obvious notions, which were never explained in
Spain, were spelled out in Spanish America. Such was the case, for example,
regarding the requirement that all Spaniards be Catholic and the impor-
tance of naturalization by integration (prescription). If Spanish America is
208 Conclusions and Afterthoughts

instrumental to the understanding of Spain, the reverse is also true. Citizen-

ship as practiced in Spanish America cannot be understood without grasping
its meaning in Castile. Nor can we really understand debates about the rights
of foreign merchants to trade in the New World if we fail to grasp the meaning
of Spanishness as generated within peninsular Spain. Even Creolism, which is
traditionally interpreted as a genuinely American phenomenon, should not
be divorced from concurrent debates taking place elsewhere in the Spanish
world. Indeed, the colonial experience was instrumental to the understanding
of Spain, and vice versa, in ways we have not yet sufciently explored.

AA Seccin Autos Acordados of the AN/Q

AC Seccin Archivo del Cabildo of the AGN/BA
ACV Archivo de la Chancillera de Valladolid
AGI Archivo General de Indias
AGN/L Archivo General de la Nacin/Lima, Lima, Peru
AGN/BA Archivo General de la Nacin/Buenos Aires, Buenos Aires,
AGS Archivo General de Simancas, Simancas, Spain
AHN Archivo Histrico Nacional, Madrid, Spain
AJ Seccin Acuerdos de Justicia del SG
AM/Q Archivo Municipal, Quito, Ecuador
AM/S Archivo Municipal de Sevilla, Seville, Spain
AM/V Archivo Municipal de Valladolid, Valladolid, Spain
AN/Q Archivo Nacional, Quito, Ecuador
AP/LP Archivo Provincial, La Plata, Argentina.
ASSCE Actas de las Sesiones Secretas de las Cortes Extraordinarias
de la Nacin Espaola (181013), Madrid, J. A. Garca,
AVM Archivo de la Villa de Madrid, Madrid, Spain
BNE Biblioteca Nacional, Madrid, Spain

210 Abbreviations

BN/L Biblioteca Nacional, Lima, Peru

BPR Biblioteca del Palacio Real, Madrid, Spain
Ced/Prag. Seccin Cdulas y Pragmticas of the SA
CSCI Seccin Consejos SuprimidosConsejo de Indias of the
DDACC Diario de las discusiones y actas de las Cortes de Cdiz, C-
diz, Imprenta Real, 1811
DGT Seccin Direccin General del Tesoro of the AGS
DSCGE Diario de Sesiones de las Cortes generales y Extraordinarios
(181013), Madrid, J. A. Garca, 1870
EC Seccin Escribana de Cmara of the AGI
E.Cab.XVII Escribana del Cabildo, siglo XVII del AM/S
E.Cab.XVIII Escribana del Cabildo, siglo XVIII del AM/S
FA(F) Seccin Escribana de Fernando Alonso (Fenecidos) of the PC
FA(O) Seccin Escribana de Fernando Alonso (Olvidados) of the
FE Seccin Fondo Especial of the AN/Q
GJ Seccin Gracia y Justicia of the AGS
GM Seccin Gobierno Municipal-Siglo XVIII of the AM/V
IG Seccin Indiferente General of the AGI
MMHCQ Seccin MiscelneaMuseo de Historia de la Ciudad de
Quito of the AM/Q
PA(F) Seccin Escribana de Prez Alonso (Fenecidos) of the PC
PA(O) Seccin Escribana de Prez Alonso (Olvidados) of the PC
PC Seccin Pleitos Civiles of the ACV
PE Seccin Papeles de Estado of the BPR
RH Seccin Real Hacienda of the AN/Q
RTC Seccin Real Tribunal del Consulado del AGN/L
SA Seccin Secretara del Acuerdo of the ACV
SG Seccin Superior Gobierno of the AGN/L
SV Seccin Sala de Vizcaya del ACV

Chapter 1. Introduction
1. Gellner, Nations and Nationalism; Anderson, Imagined Communities; Greenfeld,
Nationalism; Hobsbawm, Nations and Nationalism; Armstrong, Nations before Na-
tionalism; Smith, Ethnic Origin of Nations; and Hastings, Construction of Nationhood.
These issues are also treated in Tilly, States.
2. Viroli, For Love of Country; Brading, Patriotism; and Godechot, Nation. See
also Elliott, Revolution, 12223; Shennan, The Rise; and Bjorn, Grant, and Stringer,
Nation, Nationalism and Patriotism.
3. Tnnies, Community and Civil Society.
4. Blickle, Resistance, Representation, and Community; Te Brake, Shaping History,
1516 and 18186; and Tilly and Blockmans, Cities and the Rise of States in Europe.
Criticism of this model is included in Sahlins, Boundaries, 79, and Portillo Valds,
Monarqua y gobierno, 3638.
5. Vanel, Histoire de la nationalit; Wells, Law and Citizenship; Cockburn, National-
ity; Parry, British Nationality Law; and Maras, La corona y la comunidad hispnica.
6. Billot, Lassimilation, 273, and Nunn, Naturalization, 68.
7. Riesenberg, Citizenship in Western Tradition, 208, and Costa, Civitas, 7680.
8. Clark, Small Towns; Rappaport, Worlds within Worlds; and Babeau, Les villes.
9. Prez Collados, Una aproximacin histrica, 25 and 67.
10. Nicolet, Citoyennet; Rtat, Evolution, 3; and Boone, Cerutti, Descimon, and
Prak, Introduction, 46.
11. Weber, General Economic History, 31537; Dilcher, Brady, Blockmans, Van

212 Notes to Pages 310

Nierop, Issacs, and Mussi, Urban, 21718, and Blickle, Conclusions, 325. See also
Schulze, States, Nations, and Nationalism, and Strayer, On the Medieval Origins.
12. Bossenga, Rights, 217, and Wells, Law and Citizenship, xvxvi.
13. Brubaker, Citizenship and Nationhood.
14. Scott, Seeing Like a State, 65.
15. Nunn, Foreign Immigrants, 12, 111, and 11314.
16. Cerutti, Giustizia.
17. Billot, Lassimilation, 276; Nunn, Naturalization, 68; and Schultz Beerbhl,
Naturalization, 512.
18. Marshall, Citizenship and Social Class; Walzer, Spheres of Justice, 36; Tilly, Cit-
izenship, 8.
19. Somers, Citizenship, 589 and 611. I disagree with Somers afrmation that early
modern citizenship had clear rules that were normatized by the national authorities and
then implemented locally, according to local circumstances. See also Gaudemet, Pram-
bule, 17; Tilly, Citizenship, 5 and 6; and Cerutti, Descimon, and Prak, Premessa,
20. Brubaker and Cooper, Beyond, 1416.
21. Nader, Liberty in Absolutist Spain, 2729.
22. Losa Contreras, El consejo de Madrid, 47984; Fuente Prez, Palencia, 2933, and
Navarro de la Torre, Avecindamientos.
23. Vassberg, Village and the Outside World, 1423, and Nader, Liberty in Absolutist
Spain, 2729.
24. Monsalvo Antn, Ordenanzas medievales de Avila, 85; and Alvarez y Valds, La
extranjera, 186229. The absence of similar denitions in Spanish America led schol-
ars to search for them in royal laws, where they were equally absent: Moore, Cabildo in
Peru under the Habsburgs, 1516 and 141, and Lpez Beltrn, Intereses, 37.
25. Ruiz Ibez, Sujets, 129 and 135.
26. Toms Ortiz de la Torre, Derecho; Pecourt Garca, Una institucin, 88493;
and Gonzlez Jimnez, Genoveses, 11823.
27. Snchez Bella, Los reinos, 2526, and Lalinde Abada, De la nacionalidad.
28. Nunn, Naturalization, 68.
29. Garca Crcel, Historia de Catalua, 13235, and in Las fronteras, 71; Sesma
Muoz, El sentimiento; and Prez Collados, Una aproximacin histrica, 3179. See
also Torres i Sans, Nacions, 8486.
30. Pike, Hispanismo, 73127; Fernndez Albaladejo, Les traditions; Barton,
Roots; Boyd, Historia Patria; Koenigsberger, Spain, and in National; Linehan,
Religion; Herr, Evolution; and Mar Molinero and Smith, Nationalism and the Na-
31. Maras, La corona y la comunidad hispnica; Fernndez Albaladejo, El prob-
lema, 19094; Garca Crcel, Las fronteras; Maravall, El concepto de Espaa; and
Thompson Castile and the Monarchy, 12730.
32. Menndez Pidal, El imperio hispnico and in Los espaoles en la Historia; Snchez
Albornoz, Espaa, un enigma histrico; Maravall, El concepto de Espaa; and Maras,
Espaa inteligible.
33. Herr, Evolution, and Ucelay-de Cal, Nationalism, 1821.
Notes to Pages 1017 213

34. Ladero Quesada, El poder and in Monarqua; Fernndez Albaladejo, Cities;

and Thompson Patronato.
35. Castro, Espaa en su historia and in La realidad histrica de Espaa.
36. Liss, Mexico under Spain; Pagden, Identity; Demlas, Linvention politique;
Brading, Nationalism; Guerra, La nation; Chiaramonte, La formacin; and
Knig, Nacionalismo y nacin.
37. Brubaker, Citizenship and Nationhood, and Lalinde Abada, Linserimento.
38. Martnez San Pedro, Repobladores; Ruano Eloy, La participacin; Gautier
Dalch, Les colonies; Domnguez Ortiz, Los extranjeros; Poitrineau, La imigracin;
Pradells Nadal, Italianos; Iglesias Rodrguez, Las colonias; Ozanam, Les trangers
and La colonie; Gmez de Orozco, Italianos; Lang, Limmigration; Brito Gonz-
lez, Extranjeros en Lanzarote; Rodrguez Vicente, Los extranjeros; Armas Asin,
Herejes, 36263; Pike, Enterprise and Adventure; Kellenbenz, Mercaderes; Camp-
bell, Foreigners; Gmez Prez, Los extranjeros; Nunn, Foreign Immigrants; Gould,
La condicin; Israel, Portuguese; Langue, Los franceses; Lavall, Les trangers;
Varela, Ingleses en Espaa y Portugal; Garca-Maurio Mundi, La pugna entre el con-
sulado, 14190; and Diz, Idea, 32648.
39. Pradels Nadal, Italianos, 72 and 74; Garca-Baquero Gonzlez and Collado
Villalta, Les franais, 174, Garca-Baquero Gonzlez, Cdiz y el Atlntico, 49192;
Domnguez Ortiz, La sociedad espaola, 174; Lafuente Marchain, Los portugueses, 85
86; and Fradklin, Vecinos, 12347.
40. Cuneo Vida, Extranjeros, 6061; Rosa Olivera, Francisco, 15052; Prez
Rodrguez, Los extranjeros en Canarias, 7172; Poitrineau, La imigracin, 106; Dom-
nguez Ortiz, Los extranjeros, 83; Girard, Le commerce franaise, 203334; and Dias
Avelino, A naturalizao, 38992.
41. Balancy, Les immigrs, 5052; Armas Asin, Herejes, 37385; Domnguez
Ortiz, Los extranjeros, 18081; Molina, La expulsin; and Poitrineau, La imigra-
cin, 12228.
42. Corral garca, Las comunidades castellanas, 203, and Nader, Liberty in Absolutist
Spain, 2829.
43. Riesenberg, Citizenship in the Western Tradition and Costa, Civitas.
44. Chiaramonte, Ciudadana, 99.
45. Mariana, Del rey, 552, and Gonzlez de Cellorigo, Memorial de la poltica nec-
esaria y til, 66. This literature is studied at some length by Carzolio, En los orgenes,
78 and 14, and in her Aspectos, 56. I would like to thank the author for allowing me
to cite her work.
46. Castrillo, Tractado de repblica, 2429.

Chapter 2. Vecindad: Citizenship in Local Communities

1. MacKay, Spain in the Middle Ages; Hillgarth, Spanish Kingdoms; and Garca
Cortzar, Organizacin social del espacio.
2. Garca Rives, La condicin, and Alvarez y Valds, La extranjera, 153, 189212,
and 31970.
3. Gonzlez, Repoblacin de Castilla; Hinojosa, El orgen del rgimen; Gibert,
214 Notes to Pages 1719

Libertades urbanas; and Lacarra de Miguel, Acerca. The evolution of Castilian local
law is described in Prez Prendes Muoz Arraco, Historia del derecho espaol, vol. 2,
4. Ius commune is described in Bellomo, Common Legal Past. The codication of
citizenship practices is described in Torres Balbas, La edad; Ladero Quesada, Historia
de Sevilla, 12829, 133, and 13740; Losa Contreras, El consejo de Madrid, 47984;
Izquierdo Benito, Un espacio desordenado, 3947; Fuente Prez, Palencia, 2933; Bona-
chia Hernando, El consejo de Burgos; and Navarro de la Torre, Avecindamientos.
5. Corral Garca, Las comunidades castellanas, 2034, and Domnguez Lozano, Las
circunstancias, 3359 and 22122.
6. Vassberg, La comunidad, and in Village, 1423; and Nader, Liberty in Absolu-
tist Spain, 2729.
7. Gibert y Snchez de la Vega, El consejo de Madrid; Garca Ulecia, Los factores de
diferenciacin; Gacto Fernndez, Estructura de la poblacin; Sacristn y Martnez, Mu-
nicipalidades de Castilla, 25863; and Carte, Del consejo medieval, 8187.
8. Bernardo Ares, El rgimen municipal, includes a survey of the most recent bibli-
ography on early modern local communities. The article briey mentions citizenship
(vecindad) on page 51, yet it does not cite any examples of studies analyzing it. Indeed,
the only study I know of that deals with these issues is Carzolio, La construccin.
9. Izquiero Martn, Vecinos, and Chiaramonte, Ciudad, provincia, nation.
10. Alvarez y Valds, La extranjera, 186229.
11. Monsalvo Antn, Ordenanzas medievales, 85, Ordinance 17 of 1487. The original
reads: y declaramos que los vecinos de la ciudad y su tierra se pueden llamar y llamen
para el efecto de dicha nuestra ordenanza aquel que en la dicha ciudad viviese continua-
mente y tuviese su casa poblada en la dicha ciudad o tierra, o la mayor parte del ao y que
el tal contribuya y pague con los vecinos de la dicha ciudad en aquellas cosas que otros
semejantes de su estado o calidad pecheren y contribuyeren.
12. Porras Arboledas, ed., Ordenanzas, 9495, Ordinance 55. The original reads: Por
quanto algunos vecinos de fuera de la jurisdiccin de esta ciudad de Jan se vienen a vivir
y morar a esta dicha ciudad e se avezindan en ella, por ende, ordena y manda Jan, justicia
y regimiento, que el tal vezino que nuevamente viniere a se avezindar, que venga con su
mujer, si la tuviere y casa poblada, e si no tuviere mujer por no ser casado, que tenga casa
poblada y conocida. Que si trajere ganado, que antes que coma el ganado en el trmino
desta ciudad, se avezinde en el cabildo, y recibido en el cabildo por vezino por la ciudad,
de anza en que se obligue de vivir y morar en esta ciudad diez aos primeros siguientes.
13. Espejo Lara and Morales Gordillo, Ordenanzas de Archidona, 86. The original
reads: Ordenamos y mandamos que ninguna persona sea avido por vezino desta villa sin
que primero sea recibido por el consejo della y dado anzas de asistir en la dicha vezindad
y comprar casa y via dentro de un ao de su recebimiento y que aya de traer y tener en
ella su casa, mujer y familia . . . y que con esto asimismo sean obligados a bivir quatro
aos continuos en la dicha vezindad con casa poblada.
14. Recopilacin de Castilla, law 1, title 9, book 7, and Novsima Recopilacin, laws
13 and 6, title 26. The original reads: Qualesquier personas que viven y moran en
qualesquier ciudades, villas y lugares destsos nuestros reinos y seoros, as de realengo
como de abadengo, rdenes y seoro y behetras, que se quisieren pasar a vivir de ellos a
Notes to Pages 1921 215

otros lugares y partes con sus bienes y hacienda, lo puedan hacer y avecindarse en ellos y
sacar sus ganados, pan y vino y otros mantenimientos y todos los otros sus bienes mue-
bles. The term liberty was specically mentioned in a provision given by King Fer-
nando on July 5, 1477, reproduced in Cayetano Martn, Documentos del Archivo, 111
14, which stated each one of these, my vassals, using his liberty, [may] pass to live and
reside in the said town and its hinterland . . . [and prohibiting it would be] against justice
and reason and against their liberty, which is notorious to all. The original reads: al-
gunos de los tales sus vasallos, usando de su libertad, se pasan a vivir y morar a la dicha
villa y a su tierra [y prohibirlo es] contra justicia y razn y contra su libertad, la cual como
a todos es notorio, es cosa de mal ejemplo.
15. Lpez de Tovar, Indice de las leyes, 161 and 732.
16. Castrillo, Tractado de repblica, 2429; Morel dArleux, El concepto; and the
denition of ciudadano and ciudad in Covarrubias, Tesoro de la lengua castellana, where
the term vecino is not dened. A denition of the term vecino is also lacking in Celso, Las
17. Mariana, Del rey, 47778 and 485, and Gonzlez de Cellorigo, Memorial de la
poltica necesaria, 66.
18. This archival material can be found in several main depositories: the municipal
archives of Seville, Madrid, and Valladolid; the archives of the appellate court (chan-
cillera) of Valladolid (which include cases from some hundred communities in the juris-
dictions of Cantabria, Zamora, Burgos, Len, La Rioja, Valladolid, Madrid, Segovia,
Cceres, Palencia, Salamanca, Toledo, and Guadalajara); and the national archives in
Madrid. I also consulted manuscripts in the national library of Spain and the Royal
Library in Madrid.
19. The case of Simn Manino, discussed in Sevilles town meeting, dated November
29, 1655, in AGI, contratacin 51B. In this case, the procurador mayor de los caballeros
vieros was called upon to express his opinion.
20. Evidence for this practice are included, for example, in the les on vecindades
17001719, vecindades 17201738 and Vecindades de 1739 a 1474 in AM/S,
seccin 5 (E.Cab.XVIII), vols. 294, 295, and 296, respectively.
21. The cases of Joseph Torresillas, discussed on May 18, 1767, and Miguel Martnez
Aparicio, studied on October 23, 1769, both in AM/S, seccin 5 (E.Cab.XVIII), vol. 298.
22. The case of Joseph Torresillas, AM/S, seccin 5 (E.Cab.XVIII), vol. 298. The oath
made by the newcomers was: to keep domicile in this city, having a settled house in it
with his family, during the whole year, without leaving it, changing his home. The
original reads: guardar la vecindad en esta ciudad teniendo su casa poblada en ella con
su familia . . . todo el tiempo del ao sin hacer ausencia mudando dicha su casa.
23. Petition of Juan Joseph Martn, dated December 9, 1767, in AM/S, seccin 5
(E.Cab.XVIII), vol. 298, and the case of Felix Durn, discussed on May 27, 1768, in
AM/S, seccin 5 (E.Cab.XVIII), vol. 298. The distinct procedures instituted for peti-
tioners who were native born, immigrants, or immigrants married to native-born spouses
were described in Parecer del seor procurador mayor y varios apuntes sobre el modo
como han de conceder las vecinades in AM/S, seccin 5 (E.Cab.XVIII), vol. 298.
24. Discussions of April 1 and May 5, 1773, and the opinion of the citys legal adviser
in AHN, estado 6293/63.
216 Notes to Pages 2226

25. The Spanish monopoly in the Americas and the role of Seville will be discussed in
chapter 5. Conditions in Seville during this period are described in Guichot, Historia de la
ciudad de Sevilla, and in his Historia del exmo. ayuntamiento; Aguilar Pial, La Sevilla;
Domnguez Ortiz, Orto y Ocaso; and Pike, Aristocrats and Traders, 113 and 136. On
1314, Pike studies the inuence of immigration on municipal citizenship policies.
26. His petition was studied on April 27, 1735, and May 13, 1735, in AM/S, seccin 5
(E.Cab.XVIII), vol. 295.
27. A brief summery of Roman law citizenship practices as implemented in Italy is
included in Bizzarri, Ricerche; Quaglioni, Legal; Riesenberg, Citizenship in Western
Tradition, 11886; Dilonardo Buccolini, Note; Bonglio Dosio, La condizione;
Bowsky, Medieval Citizenship; Panero, Comuni e borghi, 13763; and Dini, Citt e
corporazioni, 14851.
28. Kirshner, Civitas, and Ullmann, Personality.
29. Kirshner, Between, and Canning, Fourteenth.
30. Riesenberg, Civism, 240.
31. Font Rius, La recepcin, 99102; Clavero, Notas; Petit, Derecho; and Al-
onso Romero, Del amor. The relation between the Castilian municipal regime and
Roman law is described in Domnguez Lozano, Las circunstancias, 5759 and 22128,
and Asenjo Gonzlez, Las ciudades.
32. Kagan, Students and Society, 135 and 212; Reig Peset, Derecho; Pelorson, Les
letrados, 3357; and Petit, Derecho.
33. Bernal de Bugeda, El derecho.
34. Clavero, Institucin histrica, 5556; Daza, Los principios; and Garca Gallo,
La ciencia.
35. Solrzano Pereira, Poltica Indiana, 15255, book 5, chap. 9, points 5768.
36. Opinion of Luis Verdugo, dated February 10, 1702, in AVM, secretara 234823.
The original reads: conforme a la libertad que conforme a derecho natural tenemos,
cada uno puede renunciar la vecindad que tuviese en un lugar y vivir y avecindarse en otro
el que eligiese.
37. Opinion of Luis Verdugo, dated February 10, 1702, in AVM, secretara 234823.
The original reads: y para admitirsele por vecino no necesita de otra circunstancia ms
que la expresin de su voluntad.
38. Petition of Germn Salcedo, dated July 20, 1788, in ACV, PC-PA(F) 35221. The
original reads: [The town] no tiene arbitrio para dejar de concederla [la vecindad] por ser
acto libre segn leyes el pasarse de una vecindad a otra. Santayana Bustillo, Gobierno
poltico, 7, citing the works of Acevedo, Avedao, and Paz arrived at a similar conclu-
sionthat individuals must be received as citizens.
39. Petition of Juan de Ocaa, dated August 14, 1717, in AVM, secretara 234832,
and ACV, PC-PA(F) 34013. The original reads: el derecho permite a cualquiera avecin-
darse donde ms le acomode and Para que cualquier persona que quisiera mudar de
vecindad de unos lugares a otros . . . lo pueda hacer libremente.
40. Those living with a mother-in-law or a brother, or as dependents in someone elses
quarters, could not be citizens: ACV, PC-PA(F) 26563; PC-PA(O)1732; PC-PA(O)
4133; PC-PA(O) 1347; and the case of Miguel de Zayas y Brenes of January 9, 1797, in
AM/S, seccin 5 (E.Cab.XVIII), vol. 298.
Notes to Pages 2630 217

41. Garca Gallo, Curso de historia, vol. 1, 8791; Friedman, El estatus; La condi-
cin; Muoz Garca, Las limitaciones; and Bermejo Castrillo, Parentesco, 23044 and
42. AM/S, seccin 5 (E.Cab.XVIII), vol. 295, nos. 3, 66, and 87; AVM, secretara 2
3491; and ACV, PC-PA(O)346.
43. The city council of Seville, on April 22, 1739, in AM/S, seccin 5 (E.Cab.XVIII),
libro 296, and ACV, PC-FA(F) 30593.
44. Alvarez y Valds, Los extranjeros, 153 and 183262. In 1476, Abenjamin Abenya-
hion, a Jew, became vecino of Murcia, where another Jew was also accepted in 1479:
Rubio Garca, Los judios, 94 and 143, docs. 908 and 1009. Similar examples can be
found in Pimenta Ferro Tavares, Os judeus, vol. 1, 224, 407, and 447n1. I would like to
thank David Nirenberg for sending me this information.
45. The cases of Bartolom French and Diego Roberto Tolosa, discussed in the city
council meeting of May 22, 1743, in AM/S, seccin 5 (E.Cab.XVIII), vol. 296 and on
January 22, 1785, in AGS, GJ 873, respectively. See also ACV, PC-PA(O) 57910.
46. Allegations of Joseph Corvillos on January 22, 1783, in ACV, PC-PA(O) 57910.
The original reads: no solo a los naturales de estos reinos . . . sino aun a los extranjeros el
poderse avecindar en cualquier pueblo de estos vuestros dominios sin que los consejos en
manera alguna se lo puedan impedir ni contradecir como expresamente se previene y
manda por vuestras reales rdenes que hablan en el asunto.
47. Originally, behetras were communities allowed to elect their lord. They were titled
cerradas when the electee could fall only in a member of certain lineages or in a native
born: Clavero, Behetra. Nevertheless, in eighteenth-century discussions behetras
mainly designated communities that could exclude people of certain estates from citizen-
ship. During this period there were behetras cerradas of nobles that excluded all simple
folk, and behetras of simple folk that excluded nobles.
48. ACV, PC-PA(F) 26161. Similar arguments were also evoked in ACV, PC-FA(F)
31222 and ACV, PC-PA(O) 7313.
49. ACV, PC-PA(F) 33272. The original reads: de estado noble de hidalgo y tener sus
cartas y ejecutorias.
50. ACV, PC-PA(F) 26415. See also Maravall, Trabajo.
51. AVM, secretara 234823.
52. Fernndez Navarrete, Conservacin, 87. The original reads: Como son vagantes y
sin domicilio seguro, ni sirven la repblica, ni contraen matrimonio, ni pagan pechos ni
tributos, siendo solo carga y gravamen de los pueblos.
53. ACV, PC-PA(O) 6406.
54. ACV, PC-FA(F) 31492.
55. ACV, PC-PA(O) 1967; ACV, PC-PA(O) 4133; ACV, PC-PA(O) 1967; ACV, PC-
PA(O) 2486; ACV, PC-PA(O) 1564; and ACV, PC-PA(O) 7382. See also Rodrguez
Fernndez, Alcaldes y regidores, 3436.
56. ACV, PC-PA(F) 34013.
57. ACV, PA(F) 35081.
58. ACV, PC-PA(F) 34011, pp. 1516. The original reads: sin la solemnidad de un
recibimiento expreso a la vecindad hecho por el consejo, se le deba considerar riguroso
vecino de continua residencia como que tena su casa abierta poblada.
218 Notes to Pages 3034

59. ACV, PC-PA(F) 34011, and ACV, PC-PA(F) 35081. In some places, formal
procedures were required by law: Merino Urrutia, Ordenanzas, 97, Ordinance 34;
Porras Arboleda, Ordenanzas, 9495, Ordinance 35; and Espejo Lara and Morales
Gordillo, Ordenanzas, 8687.
60. AHN, estado 6293/63. The original reads: el que mora con casa poblada en
estos reinos debe considerarse por vecino . . . tiene contra si la presuncin y debe ser de su
cargo hacer constar, por algunos hechos o casos, el haber estado sin nimo de per-
61. The case of Joseph Snz, discussed on July 1, 1719, in AVM, secretara 234833.
62. ACV, PC-PA(O) 4069.
63. ACV, PC-FA(F) 31492.
64. Juan Mechado, petitioning on October 8, 1686, in ACV, PC-PA(F) 28893.
65. Joseph Corvillos, on January 22, 1783, in ACV, PC-PA(O) 57910, and Joseph
Colmenar in 1753 according to AVM, secretara 234847.
66. His petition of July 12, 1776, in AM/V, GM caja 574.
67. Santayana Bustillo, Gobierno poltico.
68. Answer of the council of Uruuela in ACV, PA(O) 1967. The original reads: es
tan corto y limitado que en l no pueden contener los vecinos que hoy le componen, los
ganados necesarios a sus haciendas y cultivo de sus haciendas y se experimentara mayor
prejuicio dando lugar a la contraria.
69. ACV, PC-PA(O) 4133.
70. Power of attorney, dated September 9, 1782, in ACV, PC-PA(O) 57610. The
original reads: gravamen al comn su manutencin en esta tierra estril y morticada
anualmente de copiosas nieves por su estrechez y natural elevacin en que por lo mismo
sucede con frecuencia no poder salir de nuestras casas en los cuatro rigorosos meses del
invierno. See also ACV, PC-PA(O) 8575.
71. ACV, PC-PA(F) 34023.
72. ACV, PC-PA(O) 1967.
73. ACV, PC-PA(F) 30622. According to the local authorities, he was inquieto y
cabiloso and litigious.
74. ACV, PC-PA(F) 26195. The council accused Jos of being de genio litigioso,
soberbio, altivo y dominante, acostumbrado a injuriar gravamente de obra y palabra a
cuantos la ocasin le proporcionaba, no respetando aun los sacerdotes. ACV, PC-PA(F)
34023 is a similar case.
75. ACV, PC-PA(F) 34013.
76. These cases are described in ACV, PC-PA(F) 34011; ACV, PC-PA(F) 29471; and
ACV, PC-PA(O) 1347. See also ACV, PC-PA(F) 26563 and PC-PA(O) 1732.
77. ACV, PC-PA(F) 28893; ACV, PC-PA(F) 35221; and ACV, PC-PA(O) 1347.
78. AVM, secretara 234843. This script appeared in dozens of the cases
79. ACV, PC-PA(O) 29810.
80. ACV, PC-FA(F) 31492.
81. ACV, PC-PA(F) 35221. A similar thing also happened to Juachin Alonso, resident
in Orin (Valladolid) in 1748: ACV, PC-PA(O) 2006.
Notes to Pages 3538 219

82. Ringrose, Madrid and the Spanish Economy; Domnguez Ortiz, Una visin; L-
pez Garca and Madrazo Machazo, Capital; and Ringrose, Madrid, capital imperial.
83. Ringrose, Madrid, capital imperial, 196.
84. Deleito Piuela, Solo Madrid, 12527, and Nez de Castro, Libro histrico.
85. His petition, probably dated 1714, in AVM, secretara 234831.
86. Copia de la instruccin para la comisin de vecinos segn la expone Marcelino de
Vergara en la recopilacin que hizo, inserted in a discussion that took place from July to
December 1798 in AVM, secretara 234862. The original reads: por no saber los
forasteros la utilidad que les tiene o porque en la confusin de la corte se hace poco
aprecio de esta circunstancia. There were many examples for candidates requesting their
admission as citizens some thirty or forty years after their arrival at the court, e.g., AVM,
secretara 234852 (of 1663) and 234854 (of 1785). Lpez de la Plaza, De la
tierra, 167, mentions some 100 citizenship petitions between 1480 and 1499. Ringrose,
Madrid, capital imperial, 2012 found some 600 citizenship petitions between 1600
and 1663. Whereas in the period 16001630 most of them came from artisans and other
service providers (68 percent), in the later period (163163) the percentage of these
sectors dropped (to 36 percent) and the percentage of royal ofcials augmented.
87. Riesenberg, Citizenship in Western Tradition, 131. The ius commune origin of
many of these presumptions is also described in Prez Collados, Una aproximacin
histrica, 24.
88. Response of January 19, 1774, in ACV, PC-PA(F) 24803. The original reads:
para adquirirla y conservarla [la vecindad] basta el tener casa formada con familia y
criados capaces para soportar y acudir a las cargas y obras concejiles, contribuir y pagar
como cada vecino en lo que le tocara, sin que a ninguna persona se la pueda obligar a que
habite y resida precisa y personalmente en ningn lugar, porque esto repugna a la libertad
natural y es prohibido y reprobado por derecho.
89. ACV, PC-PA(O) 4133, pp. 2426: allegations of Jos Martnez Izquiero. The
original reads: como el nimo es un acto interno que solo puede saberlo el supremo
autor a quien nada se le oculta, por lo que nicamente puede manifestarse o descubrirse
por los actos exteriores no vericndose otros en mi parte que l de una voluntad con-
tinua de permanecer en el pueblo.
90. In both Seville and Madrid, petitioners who were native born were required to
formally request citizenship and, on these occasions, they had to afrm orally, or prove in
another way, their continuing engagement with the community: AVM, secretara 2348
36 and AM/S, seccin 2 (contadura), carpeta 336: petition of Nicols Tersero of 1715.
In the 1750s, at least, Lozoya followed the same rule: ACV, PC-FA(F) 30593, p. 7. The
membership of Diego Bajarano, born in Serrejn (Cceres) was questioned in 1752
because his intention to remain in the community was not clear: ACV, PC-PA(O) 2601.
91. The case of Toms del Corral, dated January 19, 1774, in ACV, PC-PA(F) 24803.
92. The petition of the duke of Medinaceli, presented to the town council of Seville on
September 9, 1776, in AM/S, seccin 5 (E.Cab.XVIII), vol. 298. Similar allegations, both
with regard to impersonal residence and royal service, were also made by the representa-
tive of the duke of Alba according to the town meeting of April 16, 1788, in the same
archive, section, and book.
220 Notes to Pages 3844

93. ACV, PC-PA(F) 26195; ACV, PC-PA(O) 7382 and 4133; and ACV, PC-PA(F)
94. Such were the allegations of the council of Arisgotas, received by the court on
October 25, 1769, in ACV, PC-PA(O) 4133, pp. 1923. The original reads: [The com-
munity was required to check whether the person was moved by] motivos temporales,
amovibles y casuales que en ninguna providencia pueden estimarse por legtimos para
que mediante ellos, se entienda que dicho . . . haya adquirido derecho a la vecindad . . .
porque siendo principalsimo requisito el nimo de permanecer, notoriamente le excluan
las puras casualidades y el contrario de que se presume de no subsistir ni continuar en
quien no ha tenido ms destino que el servicial que indiferentemente se busca y se toma
donde se halla, y con la misma facilidad e indiferencia se deja.
95. ACV, PC-PA(F) 24803; ACV, PC-PA(O) 6311; ACV, PC-PA(F) 25913; and
ACV, PC-PA(F) 29293.
96. The original expression used was: la mayor parte del ao: the case of Miguel de
Zayas y Brenes, in AM/S, seccin 5 (E.Cab.XVIII), vol. 298; ACV, PC-PA(O) 1732; and
ACV, PC-PA(F) 26563.
97. Petition of Claudio Blanco of January 15, 1678, in AVM, secretara, 234916.
98. Toms del Corral, on January 19, 1774, in ACV, PC-PA(F) 24803. The original
reads: con lo que maniesta su nimo de querer asistir y residir y asentar domicilio,
habitacin y morada en dicho lugar.
99. ACV, PA(F) 35081.
100. ACV, PC-PA(O) 7313.
101. Sala (Bauls), Ilustracin del derecho real, 53. The original reads: Se llama
vecino al que tiene establecido en algn lugar su domicilio o habitacin con nimo de
permanecer en l. Conforme al derecho de las Partidas, este nimo se presume y reputa
probado por el transcurso de 10 aos aunque Gregorio Lpez dice que tambin se prueba
por hechos que lo maniestan sin necesidad de este transcurso poniendo el ejemplo de l
que vende las posesiones que tena en un lugar comprando otras en otro al que traslada su
habitacin; y todava con ms claridad si es recibido como vecino por el comn de algn
lugar dndo adores de que permanecer en l 10 aos y sujetndose, segn Acevedo, a
los tributos vecinales. A similar denition is included in Escriche y Martn, Diccionario
razonado, 969.

Chapter 3. Vecindad: From Castile to Spanish America

1. Hardoy, El proceso de urbanizacin; Romero, Latinoamrica; Domnguez Com-
pay, Poltica del poblamiento; Aguilera Rojas, Fundacin de ciudades.
2. Kicza, Patterns; Hardoy, European, 22728; Morse, Introduccin; Garca
Gallo, De la ciudad; and Muro Orejn, El ayuntamiento.
3. Rumazo Gonzlez, Libro primero, 4950, and Senz de Santa Mara, 1920.
4. On June 17, 1536, Hernando Sarmiento presented himself to the authorities of
Quito and asked to be accepted as citizen. He attested that, as was well known, he would
like to remain in the city: Rumazo Gonzlez, Libro primero, 17374. From 1541 on-
ward, the authorities also demanded that newcomers supply a monetary guarantee that
Notes to Pages 4448 221

they would keep their promise to remain in the city: town council meeting of May 27,
1541, in Rumazo Gonzlez, Libro segundo, vol. 2, 255.
5. I could only nd one study of Spanish American citizenship: Domnguez Compay,
La condicin.
6. These cases were located mainly in municipal records and in published town
council meetings (Actas de Cabildo). Some were also found in the national archives of
Peru, Argentina, and Ecuador, in the Archivo de Indias of Seville, and in the National
Library in Lima.
7. Ferry, Colonial Elites, 168; Lombardi, Venezuela, 7094; and Hacienda y com-
ercio, vol. 5, 4756.
8. Petitions of Fernando Sanz, dated June 22, 1592, and Bartolom Masbel, dated De-
cember 7, 1592, in Actas del cabildo de Caracas, vol. 1, 19293 and 21011, respectively.
9. Petitions of Iigo de Sosa and Baltazar Garca, of May 8 and 24, 1593, in Actas del
cabildo de Caracas, vol. 1, 25859.
10. His petition of May 22, 1597, is in Actas del cabildo de Caracas, vol. 1, 45657
and 45960.
11. Petition of Lope Daz de Len on October 20, 1608, in Actas del cabildo de
Caracas, vol. 3, 14142.
12. The case of Manuel de Lemos, studied on September 28, 1651, in Actas del cabildo
de Caracas, vol. 8, 9798.
13. Petitions of Jorge Amaro, dated January 16, 1655, in Actas del cabildo de Caracas,
vol. 9, 1314; Benito Hernndez, dated January 12, 1609, in Actas del cabildo de Car-
acas, vol. 3, 16566; and Bernave de Oate Mendisabal, dated December 6, 1611, in
Actas del cabildo de Caracas, vol. 3, 332.
14. Garca Gallo, Territorio, 360, and Gerhard, Geografa histrica, 13.
15. His petition of May 22, 1597, in Actas del cabildo de Caracas, vol. 1, 457.
16. His petition of January 30, 1606, in Actas del cabildo de Caracas, vol. 3, 89.
17. Petitions of Cristbal Martnez, dated January 16, 1649, in Actas del cabildo de
Caracas, vol. 7, 28182; Josepha Contreras, dated August 12, 1663, in Actas del cabildo
de Caracas, vol. 11, 299; and Luis Fernndez Angel, dated March 26, 1648, in Actas del
cabildo de Caracas, vol. 7, 19394.
18. Petition of Francisco Lpez, dated January 27, 1652, in Actas del cabildo de
Caracas, vol. 8, 147, and the discussion in the council meeting of March 11, 1652,
concerning Juan Rodrguez Agras in Actas del cabildo de Caracas, vol. 8, 154211, esp.
16364, 17576, and 192.
19. Mrner, La corona espaola, and Morse, Urban, 17988.
20. Lutz, Santiago de Guatemala; Mrner, Ethnicity; Bouysse-Cassagne, Etre
mtise; and Poloni-Simard, Formacin, and in his La mosaque indienne.
21. The case of Juan Alonso of April 7, 1616, in Actas del cabildo de Caracas, vol. 4,
22. The cases of Margarita, India, Francisca Diez, Mestiza, and Antonia, freed mulata,
dated March 11 and June 10, 1617, in Actas del cabildo de Caracas, Caracas, vol. 4, 166,
189, and 19294, and of April 24, 1648, in Actas del cabildo de Caracas, vol. 7, 23031,
222 Notes to Pages 4951

23. Gelman, Cabildo; Lafuente Marchain, Los portugueses; Assadourian, Beato,

and Chiaramonte, Historia de Argentina; Rock, Argentina, 15161987, 174; and Cs-
pedes del Castillo, Lima y Buenos Aires.
24. This was the second foundation of the city. The rst one (153541) failed, as
settlers abandoned the jurisdiction.
25. Petitions of Amador Baes (1603) and Gil Gonzls (1603) in AGN/BA, AC 1914,
168 and 171; Town council meetings of May 8, 1589, petitions of Bartolom Ramrez of
May 14, 1590, and Pedro Garca of May 23, 1605, in Acuerdos del extinguido cabildo de
Buenos Aires, vol. 1, libro 1, 2021, 63, and 138, and the power of attorney granted by
Juan Ortz de Zrate to Juan Ramrez de Abreu, cited in Garca, La ciudad indiana, 74.
Although citizens of other Spanish American towns were also required to have horse and
arms (Domnguez Compay, Obligaciones), this obligation was especially important in
Buenos Aires: Garretn, La municipalidad colonial, 64.
26. Petition of Domingo Santos, dated June 12, 1607, in Acuerdos del extinguido
cabildo de Buenos Aires, vol. 1, libro 1, 383, and the case of Lucas Pacheco, studied in the
meeting of December 12, 1618, in Acuerdos del extinguido cabildo de Buenos Aires, vol.
4, libro 3, 129.
27. The meaning of this term will be studied in chapters 4 and 5.
28. The case of Jacques cirujano, discussed in the meeting of June 10, 1619, in
Acuerdos del extinguido cabildo de Buenos Aires, vol. 4, libro 3, 231. Jacques, native of
Flandres, was a surgeon. He had resided in Buenos Aires for many years and was a person
of importance ( persona de importancia). He had always cared for the ill, including the
poor. The original reads: por el cuidado que ha tenido y tiene de acudir a curar los
vecinos de ella y los pobres y porque se espera de l que lo har mejor en las cosas de
29. The Portuguese Gil Gonzlez y Amador Vez was received in 1611 as a citizen:
meeting of May 9, 1611, in Acuerdos del extinguido cabildo de Buenos Aires, vol. 2,
libros 12, 348.
30. Petitions of Pedro Fernndez de Ocampo of July 1, 1611, and Miguel Prez of July
15, 1617, in Acuerdos del extinguido cabildo de Buenos Aires, vol. 2, libros 12, 379 and
libros 23, 451, as well as the case of Luis de Navarrete, according to the meeting of April
30, 1618, in Acuerdos del extinguido cabildo de Buenos Aires, vol. 4, libro 3, 5556.
31. Petitions of Julin Mixel, dated January 11, 1610, and Rodrigo Alonso del Gra-
nado, dated June 21, 1610, in Acuerdos del cabildo de Buenos Aires, vol. 2, libros 12,
230 and 266; and Petition of Rodrigo Nuez de Len of February 10, 1614, in Acuerdos
del extinguido cabildo de Buenos Aires, vol. 3, libros 23, 62.
32. Petition of Antonio Heris Gabiria, dated August 19, 1619, and April 6, 1620, in
Acuerdos del extinguido cabildo de Buenos Aires, vol. 4, libro 3, 28081 and 37374.
See also the petition of Rafael Maldonado, dated July 19, 1617, in AGN/BA, AC 191
4, 69.
33. Lockhart, Spanish Peru; Bromley, La fundacin de la Ciudad de los Reyes; Hampe
Martnez, Sobre encomenderos; Bronner, Peruvian; Moya Pons, El cabildo y la vida
local; and Durn Montero, Lima en el siglo XVII.
34. Petitions of Hernando de Villanueva, dated October 8 1549, in Libros de cabildo
Notes to Pages 5153 223

de Lima, libro 4, 185, and Pedro Snchez, of June 19, 1553, in Libros de cabildo de Lima,
Lima, Consejo Provincial de Lima, 1935, libro 5, 423.
35. Town council of August 14, 1570, in Libros de cabildo de Lima, libro 7, 28.
36. Encomienda was a Spanish institution that subjected a group of Indians to a
Spaniard. He was supposed to defend them and ensure their conversion to Christianity,
and they were forced to work for him or pay him tribute: Lockhart, Spanish Peru, 1137,
and Puente Brunke, Encomienda y encomenderos.
37. Solrzano Pereira, Poltica Indiana, book 3, chap. 27. Behind the legal requirement
of residence was the social reality that encomenderos were usually important members
of the community and often dominated the city socially, economically, and politically:
Matienzo, Gobierno del Per, 27072.
38. Town council meeting of September 5, 1671, in Libros de cabildo de Lima, libro 7,
16971, and petition of April 29, 1596, in Libros de cabildo de Lima, libro 12, 481.
When the encomienda belonged to a woman, her husband had the right to be accepted as
citizen: petition of Diego Nuez de Campoverde, dated October 9, 1598, in Libros de
cabildo de Lima, libro 13, 176.
39. The case of Lorenzo de Estupian, whose residence obligation (originally in Gua-
nuco) was transferred to Lima: town council of March 7, 1560, in Libros de cabildo de
Lima, libro 6/1, 271. The grant of citizenship by the viceroy was also mentioned in Moor,
Cabildo in Peru, 143.
40. His petition of January 11, 1562, in Libros de cabildo de Lima, libro 6/2, 2021. A
somewhat similar case was debated in Lima on September 16, 1577, according to Libros
de cabildo de Lima, libro 8, 49798.
41. Town council meeting of September 18, 1570, in Libros de cabildo de Lima, libro
7, 40, and December 1, 1590, in Libros de cabildo de Lima, libro 10, 47576.
42. Libros de cabildo de Lima, libro 6/2, 532. Juan de Matienzo criticized the practice
of calling these people caballeros no vecinos, stating that these non-encomendero
citizens were indeed true and full citizens: Matienzo, Gobierno del Peru, 27071. Ac-
cording to Solrzano Pereira, Poltica Indiana, book 3, chap. 27, point 6, in Spanish
America, vecino-encomenderos were distinguished from all other vecinos, who were
usually called domiciliarios. The usage of caballeros in order to designate vecinos was
already present in medieval Spain: Garca de Valdeavellano, Orgenes de la burgesa,
43. In 1576, for example, Antonio Lpez was admitted as an ordinary vecino of
Lima: town council of December 17 in Libros de cabildo de Lima, libro 8, 342.
44. Marzahl, Town in the Empire, 3740; Ferreiro, Elites; Levillier, Ordenanzas, 53;
and Lohmann Villena, Francisco de Toledo, 131.
45. Recopilacin de Indias, law 6, title 10, book 4.
46. Domnguez Compay, La vida en las pequeas ciudades, 51; Rosenblat, La pobla-
cin indgena, 135; and Lpez Beltrn, Intereses, note 37.
47. Developments in Mexico City were somewhat similar to those in Lima. Early
citizenship petitions were tied to land grants, and the municipal community suffered
from frequent vice-regal intervention. During the sixteenth century, Mexico City recog-
nized the division between citizens and vecinos encomenderos, and it permitted some
224 Notes to Pages 5357

overlapping between the municipal and the provincial spheres, admitting people residing
in New Spain to local citizenship. Newcomers had to guarantee their residence in the
city or exchange residence for a monetary payment: petition of Francisco de las Casas,
dated December 6, 1527, in Primer libro de Actas [del cabildo de Mxico], 154; petition
of Diego Orpesa, dated May 11, 1543, in Libro cuarto de las actas del cabildo [de Mxico
City], 34142; Ordenanzas de buen gobierno; and Himmerich y Valencia, Encomen-
deros of New Spain, 89 and 102.
48. Marzahl, Town in the Empire, 37, 7071 and 16264.
49. Morelli, Territorio o nazione, 171, and Poloni-Simard, Problmes, 13.
50. The existence, despite local variations, of an American pattern of development
was also noted in Garca Bernal, Las elites. See also Cdula of September 13, 1621,
reproduced in Konetzke, Coleccin, vol. 2/1, 265.
51. Town council meeting of February 1, 1549, in Libros de cabildo de Lima, libro 9,
6163; meetings of September 23, 1558, and March 7, 1560, in Libros de cabildo de
Lima, libro 6/1, 99 and 271; meeting of June 17, 1536, in Rumazo, Libro primero de
cabildos de Quito, 17374; and meeting of June 16, 1617, in Acuerdos del extinguido
cabildo de Buenos Aires, vol. 3, libros 23, 441, respectively. This practice was also
conrmed by Solrzano Pereira, Poltica Indiana, book 4, chap. 1, point 7, who ex-
plained that in Spanish America, local municipal judges (alcaldes ordinarios) could be
(rather than had to be) citizens.
52. Town council meeting of February 5, 1599, in Garcs, Libro del ilustre cabildo . . .
de Quito, 24142, and Noble Cook, Numeracin general.
53. Recopilacin de Indias, laws 82 and 83, title 16, book 2, and cdulas of July 23,
1627, and October 2, 1764, in Konetzke, Coleccin de documentos, vol. 2, 3015 and
vol. 3, 321. These questions were also treated by Herzog in Identidades, and in Ritos de
control, chap. 4, point 11.
54. AGI, EC 926A; AGI, Quito 73, cuaderno 3, 30937; AGI, Quito 74, cuaderno 5,
2526; AHN, CSCI 20.620, 28395 in p. 291. I also found AGI, Quito 73, 291 and 306
55. AGI, EC 926A, 76. The same position was adopted by Nicols Andagoya y Ota-
lora, a witness in a 1685 case, who asserted that the lady in question was avecindada en
esta ciudad: his testimony in AGI, Quito 73, cuaderno 3, 31517.
56. Diego Incln Valds on December 9, 1670, in AGI, EC 926A, 34 and 26. The
original reads: y siempre estuvo el dicho gobernador [who was the father of the bride]
con nimo de volverse a los reinos de Espaa. According to the attorney of Incln
Valds, the father of the bride changed his place of residence en servicio de vuestra alteza
con el ocio de gobernador de ella sin nimo de perseverar, ante bien de partida para estos
reinos con que no se puede dudar que conservaba la vecindad y domicilio de la ciudad de
Cdiz de donde parti a servir el dicho gobierno.
57. Solrzano Pereira, Poltica Indiana, book 5, chap. 9, points 5768, 15255.
58. Report dated October 13, 1701, in AN/Q, gobierno 12, expediente 23.10.1723,
12. The original reads: usando del derecho natural que les asiste, de vasallos libres de
vuestra real persona y querer voluntariamente jurar domicilio a este cabildo.
59. Cansanello, De sbditos, 11718.
60. AGI, EC 914B, cuaderno 8, 308R and V and 914C, and cuaderno 9, 50V.
Notes to Pages 5760 225

61. The original reads: lo cierto es que habiendo ido a Lima bien mozo se mantuvo
mucho tiempo y connaturaliz en aquella ciudad, teniendo ms relacin y estrachez con
sus vecinos, que con los de esta ciudad.
62. AGI, EC 914B, cuaderno 8, fols. 311R and V and 914C, and cuaderno 9, fol. 50V.
The relation between domicile and citizenship, on one hand, and nativeness, on the other,
and the wish to institute a monopoly on ofce holding favoring the native born will be
explored in chapters 4 and 5.
63. Discussions of March 11 and 20, 1652, in Actas del cabildo de Caracas, vol. 8, 154,
16169, 17476, 17879, 18587, 19294, 204, and 20711.
64. AGN/BA, 91721; AGN/BA 91926; town council meetings of January 15
and 22, February 2, September 17 and 25, October 1, 9, and 22, and December 7, 1756,
as well as February 2, 1757, in Acuerdos del extinguido cabildo de Buenos Aires, ser. 3,
vol. 2, libros 303, 1522, 3334, 12642, 147, 15556, and 161; and Superunda,
Relacin de Gobierno, 27476 and 423. This episode was also studied by Mariluz Ur-
quijo, El diputado.
65. Proceedings in Lima on June 28, 1756, in AGN/BA, 91721. The original reads:
sin embargo de no ser casados ni viudos arraigados con casas o bienes raices, pues el
requisito nico para la vecindad, no es ms que la traslacin del caudal y bienes de
fortuna con la persona, que viene a residir de nuevo con nimo de vivir all perpetuamente
y que sucediendo esto con ellos deben ser regulados por tales vecinos.
66. The original reads: siendo forasteros, el destino que los trae es el de vender los
gneros y mercaderas que conducen sin nimo de residir perpetuamente, pues expen-
didos sus frutos y cobradas sus dependencias, se vuelven a las partes de sus antiguas
67. Letter written by Antonio Portier to the city council of Buenos Aires on July 8,
1789, and in the subsequent appeal by the council to the viceroy in AGN/BA 9193
11, 653, 659, and 723. See also town council on January 15 and February 4, 1789, in
Acuerdos del extinguido cabildo de Buenos Aires, ser. 3, libros 4952, 2024, and 35
68. Petitions of Marcos Riglos in the meeting of January 3, 1777, in Acuerdos del
extinguido cabildo de Buenos Aires, ser. 3, libros 4044, 17; Martn de Alzaga in
AGN/BA, 919312, 1619; AGN/BA 91949, 4153; and Jernimo Morales in
AGN/BA, 91948. Eventually, entire groups of people requested to be exempt from
ofceholding on a regular basis: meetings of October 18 and November 7, 1796, in
Acuerdos del extinguido cabildo de Buenos Aires, ser. 3, vol. 11, libros 5457, 15355,
and 168, and the orders of November 12, 1783, and July 8, 1784, in AGN/BA, 9194
2, 173.
69. AGN/BA, 919312, 18184.
70. AGN/BA, 91928.
71. The original reads: han tenido su mansin y residencia continua en esta ciudad y
sta les constituye la vecindad segn la misma ley. The idea that a prolonged residence in
an independent house constituted citizenship remained in force as late as 1794, as is
apparent from the royal decree that instituted the local merchant guild in 1796: Fradklin,
72. Such a feeling is expressed, e.g., in Erauso, Memoir of a Basque Lieutenant Nun.
226 Notes to Pages 6065

73. Barrero Garca, De los fueros; Domnguez Compay, Ordenanzas municipales

hispanoamericanas; Vzquez Pando, Derecho; Tau Anzotegui, El derecho; and
Herzog, La Recopilacin.
74. References to citizenship were lacking, for example, in the municipal ordinances of
Quito (1568), Guayaquil (1590), and many Peruvian and Mexican communities: AMQ,
Miscelnea 00012, 6372; the residencia of Joseph Clemente y Mora in AGI, EC 911B,
1523; Levillier, Ordenanzas de Don Francisco de Toledo; Libros de Cabildo de Lima,
libro 11, 781813 and libro 12, 64788; and Ordenanzas de buen gobierno. When
citizenship was mentioned in Spanish American law, it was usually to explain its admin-
istrative and political implications, such as deciding how to count the inhabitants of a
new settlement in order to know what status it should receive: Recopilacin de Indias law
6, title 10, book 4, and the Nuevas ordenanzas de descubrimiento, poblacin y pacica-
cin of July 13, 1573, reproduced in Solano, Normas y leyes, 208. Ordinance 93 reads:
Declaramos que se entienda por vecino el hijo o hija o hijos del nuevo poblador o sus
parientes, dentro y fuera del cuarto grado teniendo sus casas y familias distintas y apart-
adas y siendo casados y teniendo cada uno casa por s.
75. Spalding, Social Climbers; Snchez Albornoz, Una dicotoma; Robinson, In-
dian Migration; Wightman, Indigenous Migration and Social Change; Viera Powers,
Andean Journeys; Chambers, From Subjects to Citizens; and Poloni-Simard, La mosa-
que indienne, 15364 and 34046.

Chapter 4. Naturaleza: The Community of the Kingdom

1. Snchez Bella, Los reinos en la historia.
2. Floristn, Conquista, 48189.
3. Gibert, La condicin; Alvarez Valds, Los extranjeros, 42226; Prez Prendes
Muoz Arraco, La recopilacin, 155; and Prez Collados, Una aproximacin histr-
ica, 6667.
4. The so-called Spanish monopoly in the Americas was instituted through a series of
royal decrees, later reproduced in the main Spanish colonial legal code, the Recopilacin
de Indias, title 27, book 9. Initially, the decrees simply referred to natives of our king-
doms, and it was unclear whether natives of the crown of Aragon could immigrate and
trade in the New World. This question was formally settled in 1596 when King Philip II
declared that the term included natives of Castile, Aragon, Catalonia, Valencia, Majorca,
Minorca, Navarra, and the three Basque provinces: Recopilacin de Indias, law 28, title
27, book 9. These questions will be dealt with in greater length in chapter 5.
5. Novsima Recopilacin, law 5, title 14, book 1. These decrees are known as the
decretos de nueva planta: Prez Prendes Muoz Arraco, Historia del derecho espaol,
vol. 2, 86165; Morales Arrizabalaga, La derogacin de los fueros de Aragn; and
Gimnez Lpez, Gobernar con una misma ley. Some of the consequences of these decrees
are studied in Jimnez Sureda, Aliengenas; Molas Ribalta, Magistrados; Heras, La
problemtica; and Dedieu, Los gobernadores.
6. Veitia Linaje, Norte de la contratacin, 328, and Castro y Bravo, Los estudios,
219. In 1645, the parliament (cortes) of Navarre afrmed as much and mentioned that,
since 1513 and 1515, natives of Navarres are eligible to ofces in Castile and vice versa.
Notes to Pages 6569 227

This afrmation won ofcial recognition in 1647 when King Philip IV issued a royal
decree to that effect: Actas de las cortes de Navarra, book 3, 74 and 81 and books 1516,
7. Ladero Quesada, Los reyes catlicos; Espaa. Reexiones; and Fusi, Espaa.
8. Garca Fuentes, El comercio espaol con Amrica, 37, and Campbell, Foreign-
ers, 153.
9. Garca Crcel, Historia de Catalua, 13235, and in Las fronteras, 7076;
Sesma Muoz, El sentimiento; and Prez Collados, Una aproximacin histrica.
10. Garca Fuentes, for example, species that nativeness was either by origin and
birth, or it was obtained through a royal naturalization letter: El comercio espaol con
Amrica, 36. See also Nunn, Foreign Immigrants, 2, and Cremades Grin, Cartas de
naturaleza, 4244.
11. Molinari, Naturalidad, 701. The meaning of nativeness in other, non-Castilian
Iberian kingdoms is studied in Lalinde Abada, De la nacionalidad and in his Linseri-
mento; Roca i Trias, Unde cathalanus; Lang, Limmigration; Sales, Naturali-
zaes and in Naturals; Planas Rossell, Recopilacin del derecho de Mallorca, book
1, title 1, 88; Sanz Camaez, Algunas; Ginebra Molins, Laplicaci; Jimnez Sureda,
Aliengenas, 111011; Pia Homs, La condicin.
12. Campbell, Foreigners, 15354, and Nunn, Foreign Immigrants, 1.
13. Recopilacin de Indias, law 28, title 27, book 9. According to Garca-Maurio
Mundi, La pugna, 41, Despite doubts, the denition of foreignness was clear-cut (taj-
ante) in the Recopilacin de Indias, which declared that all those who were not natives of
the kingdoms of Castile, Aragon, Catalonia [and so forth] were foreigners.
14. Cuarta Partida, title 24, preface and law 1. I use my own translation for the preface
and the translation of Burns and Scott, Las Siete Partidas, vol. 4, 990, for law 1. The
original reads: Uno de los grandes debdos que los homes pueden haber unos con otros es
naturaleza; ca bien como la natura los ayunta por linage, asi la naturaleza los face seer
como unos por luengo uso de leal amor. And also Naturaleza tanto quiere decir como
debdo que han los homes unos con otros por alguna derecho razn en se amar y se querer
bien. Et el departimiento que ha entre natura e naturaleza es este, que natura es una virtud
que face seer todas las cosas en aquel estado que Dios las orden, et naturaleza es cosa
que semeja a la natura, et que ayuda a seer et a mantener todo lo que decende deella.
15. Cuarta Partida, title 24, law 2.
16. Cuarta Partida, title 25. These issues will be discussed at greater length in chapter 6.
17. Hermann, Naturales, 189201.
18. Recopilacin de Castilla, laws 14, 18, and 25, title 3, book 1; laws 1 and 2, title 10,
book 5; law 1, title 5, book 6; laws 2, title 2, book 7; and law 27, title 3, book 7. See also
Garca Ulecia, Naturaleza, 8897.
19. Cuarta Partida, title 24, law 2. This law was cited, for example, by Hugo de Celso,
Las leyes, fol. CCXLIII (R) in 1538. It was invoked again in the 1720s in Por el scal de
su magestad en defensa de la respuesta que dio a las pretensiones introducidas por los
hijos nacidos en Espaa de padres extranjeros in AGI, IG 2301, fol. 4R.
20. Recopilacin de Castille, law 19, title 3, book 1. The original reads: Aunque por
leyes de estos reinos esta provedo que los que no fueren naturales de ellos no puedan
tener prelacias, dignidades ni otros benecios, porque se ha dudado y se duda cuales se
228 Notes to Pages 6972

dirn naturales para poder tener los dichos benecios: ordenamos y mandamos que aquel
se diga natural que fuera nacido en estos reinos y hijo de padres que ambos a dos o al
menos el padre sea asmismo nacido en estos reinos, o haya contrado domicilio en ellos y
dems de esto haya vivido en ellos por tiempo de diez aos. Con que si los padres, siendo
ambos o al menos el padre, nacido y natural en estos reinos, estando fuera de ellos en
servicio nuestro o por nuestro mandado o de paso y sin contraer domicilio fuera de estos
reinos hubiere algn hijo fuera de ellos, este tal sea habido por natural de estos reinos.
21. Cdula of July 14, 1561, BNE MSS 20.06712.
22. Recopilacin de Indias, law 27, title 27, book 9.
23. Recopilacin de Castilla, law 66, title 4, book 2, also reproduced in the Novsima
Recopilacin, law 1, title 11, book 6.
24. Acevedo, in his Commentariorum iuris civilis in Hispaniae (1594), as cited in Prez
Prendes Muoz Arraco, La recopilacin, 155; Celso, Las leyes, CCXLIII (R); Hevia
Bolaos, Curia Philipica, 266; Veitia Linaje, Norte de la contratacin, 33031; Lpez de
Tovar, Indice de las leyes, 105 and 53637; Antunes y Acevedo, Memorias histricas,
281 and 293; Sala (Bauls), Ilustracin del derecho real, 5455; and Alvarez, Institu-
ciones de derecho real, 8283.
25. Celso, Las leyes, CCXLIII (R). The original reads: Aunque nacer o criarse o morar
por mucho tiempo en alguna tierra sean las principales naturalezas que puede haber el
hombre . . . empo de las dichas maneras de naturaleza [tambin] adquierese naturaleza
por vasallaje . . . y si casase all, o si hay hubiere heredamiento, o si el seor de la tierra le
sacare de cautiverio o le librare de muerte o de deshonra . . . o si siendo mozo o turco se
tornare Christiano y por morar diez aos en algn lugar.
26. Lpez de Tovar, Indice, 105.
27. Castro y Bravo, Los estudios, 228.
28. Alvarez, Instituciones de derecho real, 82, and Uztariz, Theory and Practice,
29. Fernndez Navarrete, Conservacin, 25. The original reads: Los extranjeros no se
hallan obligados, ni con fe, ni con amor.
30. Recopilacin de Castilla, law 14, title 3, book 1. The original reads: Como estos
extranjeros habidas las dignidades y benecios de las iglesias de nuestros reinos quieren
ms estar en sus tierras que en la ajena, sacase para ellos la moneda de oro de nuestros
reinos en gran dao y pobreza de ellos y con la renta de nuestros reinos se enriquecen los
reinos extranjeros y aun a las veces los enemigos . . . y el otro es que estos prelados y otros
beneciados, estando en su naturaleza socorrira a Nos . . . para la guerra de los Moros y
para la defensa de la corona real de nuestors reinos: lo cual cessa cuando los prelados y
beneciados no son nuestors naturales.
31. Alamos de Barrientos, Discurso poltico, 1416; Uztariz, Theory and Practice, 37
40; and Fernndez Navarrete, Conservacin, 126. See also Maravall, Del rgimen,
32. Uztariz, Theory and Practice, 38.
33. Fernndez Navarrete, Conservacin, 126. The original reads: que fuesen prendas
seguras de su delidad.
34. Discurso annimo en defensa de los extranjeros y su comercio, anonymous,
undated pamphlet, partially reproduced in Domnguez Ortiz, Los extranjeros, 17578,
Notes to Pages 7274 229

on 177. The original reads: casi todos los extranjeros . . . estn muy naturalizados en esa
ciudad, unos por los muchos aos que ha que viven en ella, otros por haber nacido
tambin en ella, otros porque se van casando y hay muchos que lo estn con hijas de
naturales, y los naturales con sus hijas, con que tienen muy grandes races echadas para
amar y desear el bien de estos reinos.
35. Lorenzo Herrera Betancur in his petition dated May 12, 1642, reproduced in
Sancho de Sopranis, Las naciones, 86971. The original reads: se regulan por natu-
rales porque la mayor parte de ellos viven en ella de 20, 30, 40 y 50 aos a esta parte,
siendo casados con naturales, teniendo sus haciendas y familias sin tener dependencia con
las cosas de Portugal.
36. Antunes y Acevedo, Memorias histricas, 29495, and Jos de Cadalso, as cited in
Diz, Idea, 340. The original reads: viene a ser en sustancia lo mismo que declararles
naturales por privilegio and ha legado a formar un excelente medio entre la gravedad
espaola y la ligereza francesa, or, in another case, ha llegado a unir la slidez espaola
con la amabilidad francesa.
37. Consulta of March 11, 1769, in AGS, GJ 873. The same was asserted by Gregorio
Lpez according to Prez Collados, Una aproximacin histrica, 66.
38. Consulta of March 21, 1769, in AGS, GJ 873.
39. Consulta of September 3, 1785, ibid.
40. Decision dated November 19, 1785, and correspondence of December 8, 1785, in
41. The original reads: por no haber pruebas efectivas del nimo de permanecer y tener
algunas probables noticias de lo contrario, no vengo en conceder esta naturalizacin.
42. Consulta of January 18, 1762, in AGS, GJ 873.
43. Garca Ulecia, Naturaleza, 96.
44. Por el scal de su magestad en defensa de la respuesta que dio a las pretensiones
introducidas por los hijos nacidos en Espaa de padres extranjeros, in AGI, IG 2301,
fols. 3V, 4R, and 6R. The original read: poderse dar caso de que aunque concurran estas
circunstancias de hecho, de derecho no se le pueda declarar la naturaleza ni concederle
licencia para el comercio como debe practicarse con aquellos extranjeros que, aunque
hayan habitado el tiempo referido, se reconoce que estn transeuntes y sin nimo de
permanecer, ni constituir domicilio; Y asi entendida la disposicin de la ley de partida
que prescribe la habitacin de diez aos para la naturaleza, tiene la inteligencia de que
esta regla corre cuando la diurna habitacin hace que se presuma el nimo de permanecer
perpetuamente. Y as, aviendo presuncin o conjeturas contrarias, no se induce natu-
raleza. Con que los que habitasen en Espaa, siempre que las presunciones maniesten el
nimo de volverse, no podrn obtener naturaleza; and Porque la ley de Partida . . . hab-
lando de las naturalezas une estas palabras: la dezena por moranza de diez aos, que faga
en la tierra maguer sea natural de otra. Y si se hubiese de atender al sonido de las
palabras, la moranza de diez aos constituyera naturaleza y es indisputable que no lo
constituye sin nimo de permanecer segun las doctrinas referidas.
45. His case, included in AGS, GJ 873.
46. The cases of Diego Roberto Tolosa and Juan Lastache, natives of France, discussed
on January 22, 1785, and April 23, 1758, respectively, in AGS, GJ 873.
47. Lpez de Tovar, Indice, 536, and Hevia Bolaos, Curia Philipica, 266. The
230 Notes to Pages 7476

original reads: y si el natural del reino o habido por tal se fuera de l a vivir en otro
extrao donde constituye domicilio, si despus pretendiere ser natural del reino, no se
dice serlo.
48. Feijo y Montenegro, Amor, 145 and 147. The original read: Espaa es el
objeto propio del amor del espaol . . . esto se entiende cuando la transmigracin a otro
pas no los haga miembros de otro estado, en cuyo caso este debe prevalecer al pas donde
nacieron and tambin entiendo que esta obligacin no se la vincula la repblica porque
nacimos en su distrito, sino porque componemos su sociedad. As, el que legtimamente
es transferido a otro dominio distinto de aquel en que ha nacido y se avecinda en l
contrae respecto de aquella repblica la misma obligacin que antes tena a la que le di
cuna y le debe mirar como patria suya.
49. The cases of Bruno Francisco de Pereira in AGN/L, SG, varios 4, 120, and Juan
Francisco de Urrea described in cdula of April 16, 1719, in AGI, IG 1536. See also
Casado Alonso, Las colonias.
50. His case, debated on November 11, 1787, in AGS, GJ 873.
51. His letters and petitions, as well as the letters of the marquis of Lede of May 5,
1720, and Gaspar de Narbona of May 8, 1720, in AVM, secretara 234825.
52. Royal serviceconsidered a duty and not a rightallowed people to argue that
they maintained their membership in the community despite their actual absence: see
chapter 2 and cdula of 1565 cited in the decision of the cmara of Castile dated Novem-
ber 12, 1787, in AGS, GJ 873.
53. Recopilacin de Castilla, book 1, title 3, law 19 of 1565. The original reads: Con
que si los padres . . . estando fuera de ellos en servicio nuestro, o por nuestro mandado o
de paso y sin contraer domicilio fuera de estos reinos hubiera algun hijo fuera de ellos,
este tal sea habido por natural de estos reinos.
54. Consulta of the cmara of Castile, September 19, 1768, in AGS, GJ 873. The
original reads: de lo que pudiera presumirse deliberado nimo de establecer en ella
[Roma] su domicilio . . . antes de cumplir los diez aos que se necesitan para ello fue
empleado por Vuestra Majestad como queda referido, conservando por este medio la
naturaleza de Espaa que se retiene con el servicio de la corona and acredita la misma
posesin y convence el nimo e intencin de retenerla y conservarla [la naturaleza].
55. Decision of March 5, 1624, in AGI, contratacin 50B. The original reads: no se
atreve a hacerlo por las molestias que continuamente le hacen, as por el nombre extran-
jero que tiene.
56. Cdula of February 12, 1788, in AGS, GJ 873 reproducing his petition.
57. Consulta of November 3, 1770, in AGS, GJ 873.
58. The original reads: Estos antecedentes no aquietan su temor de no poder obtener
con seguridad benecio o renta eclesistica en estos reinos sin proceder formal declara-
cin de su aptitud . . . Tampoco le aquieta que su hermano Miguel de Olavide, residente
de Lima, se le permiti comercian en Indias and impracticable por hallarse tan con-
naturalizado en ellos que con dicultad hallara otra lengua que la espaola.
59. Consulta of February 26, 1772, in AGS, GJ 873. The original reads: para que en
ningn tiempo se le tenga por extranjero.
60. His petition in AGS, GJ 873.
61. The relationships between the king and the parliament was studied by Jago, Habs-
Notes to Pages 7677 231

burg and in Philip; Thompson, Crown and Cortes; Prez Prendes Muoz Arraco,
Cortes de Castilla; and Dios, Corporacin.
62. Bello Len, Extranjeros en Castilla, 1819, 3155 and 77171.
63. Cremades Grin, Cartas, 41, 47, and 5657. Examples of such cases are in-
cluded in AVM, secretara 234923 and a note written by the marquis of Grimaldi on
September 21, 1772, in AGS, GJ 873.
64. Early episodes (1520 and 1525) of this battle are described in Belmonte Daz, Los
comuneros, 74 and 1078, and Prez Prendes Muoz Arraco, La recopilacin, 153
57. See also Dios, Gracia, merced y patronazgo, 32728, and Prez Collados, Una
aproximacin histrica, 275323.
65. The servicio de millones was a form of taxation introduced at the end of the
sixteenth century: Cceres de Gea, Reforma y fraude scal; Andrs Ucendo, La scalidad
en Castilla; Fortea Prez, Monarqua y cortes and in Las ciudades; and Fernndez
Albaladejo, Cities and State, 17576. Thompson, Castile: Polity and in Castile:
Absolutism studies the institution of a series of formal contracts between the king and
the kingdom that set out the terms and conditions for the granting of scal services. These
contractsin existence since the 1590shad been applied to the millones tax since
1601. After 1618, they included conditions concerning the naturalization of foreigners.
66. Royal agreement was expressed, for example, in condition 33, of the fth type, of
1618 that stipulated that ninguna persona que no fuere natural de estos reinos pueda
tener las dichas venticuatrias, regimientos, juraduras ni otros ocios y que Su Majestad
en ninguna forma ni manera ni por ningunas causas ni razones, aunque se diga son por el
bien pblico, conceda a los dichos extranjeros cartas de naturalezas para tener los dichos
ocios, y que no se les den ni puedan dar para gozar pensiones, canonjas, dignidades ni
otros cualesquier benecios eclesisticos: Actas de las Cortes de Castilla, vol. 32, 529
30. This condition was reproduced again in 1632 (condition 32 of the fth type) and was
followed by a cdula of July 27, 1632, in which the king specically determined that
mando al presidente y los de mi consejo de la cmara que desde el da de la data de esta
mi carta en adelante no me consulten ninguna de las dichas naturalezas, y al reino junto
en cortes no den en manera alguna consentimiento para ello: Actas de las Cortes de
Castilla, vol. 51, 5455 and 33336. These conditions were frequently cited. For exam-
ple, they were mentioned in the discussion on the case of Angelo Garretn, in the manifest
elaborated by Joseph de Ledesma in 1657, in AVM, secretara 235014.
67. Petition of May 25 and 26, 1632: Actas de las Cortes de Castilla, vol. 51, 4748
and 61. Discussions in 1632 also demonstrated another point of contention: whether the
representatives of the cities were authorized to vote on this matter, or whether the deci-
sion could only be taken by the towns they represented. This question was openly de-
bated on September 22, and October 5, 1632: Actas de las Cortes de Castilla, vol. 52, 181
and 227. This discussion and the nature of representation during this period were
studied by Fortea Prez, Las ciudades.
68. The case of Juan Bapista Fini y Manzano, who was granted naturalization in these
kingdoms in order to enjoy an ecclesiastical rent in Teruel (Aragon) in Cortes de
Madrid, 33940.
69. Letter of Agustn de Montiano y Luyando in AM/V, GM 542, 5657, and the case
of Jos Dovia AVM, secretara 234824. The exceptionality of these cases was stressed
232 Notes to Pages 7779

by the king in his answer to the consulta of the cmara of Castile dated February 10,
1715, in BPR, II 2832, no. 15, 279R279V. This practice was also mentioned in Cre-
mades Grin, Cartas.
70. The naturalization of Francisco Faria (1721) in AGS, GJ 873.
71. Novsima Recopilacin, law 6, title 14, book 1.
72. Such opposition was voiced, for example, in the response of the city of Crdoba,
dated June 14, 1714, in BPR, II 1431, no. 53, fols. 332R334V. Similar protests were also
voiced by Toledo (undated document in AGS, GJ 873), Salamanca (AM/V, GM 514,
8586) and Madrid (different documents dated May 1716 in AVM, secretara 2394
63; discussion of 1747 and 1755 in AVM, secretara, 234842; manifest of Joseph de
Ledesma [1657] in AVM, secretara 235014; and AM/V, GM 514, 8586). The
response of the council of Murcia was studied in Cremades Grin, Cartas. The royal
councils often agreed with this stand: consulta of the cmara of Castille of September 26,
1715, included in BPR, II 2832, no. 15, 278R279V. See also the discussions of May 12,
1760, and February 1, 1764, in the cases of Carlos Saveli Spinola and Manuel y Genario
Conforto in AGS, GJ 873.
73. Manifest elaborated by Joseph de Ledesma in 1657, reproduced in AVM, secretara
235014, 3.
74. Recopilacin de Castilla, law 14, title 3, book 1. The original reads: otros man-
damos y damos facultad a todos y cualesquier nuestros sbditos y naturales que sobre
esto se pueda oponer y hacer resistencia pues la tal oposicin es sobre la exepcin y honra
y guarda de las preeminencias de su rey y de su patria.
75. Cmara of Castile on July 5, 1783, in AGS, GJ 873.
76. Discussion of October 9, 1771, in AGS, GJ 873.
77. Cmara of Castile on May 12, 1760, in AGS, GJ 873. These concerns were already
invoked in 1528 according to the Recopilacin de Castilla, law 20, title 3, book 1, which
determined that the ability of naturalized foreigners to enjoy ecclesiastical beneces in the
kingdom was conditioned in their local residence. In the same legal code, law 6, title 5,
book 3, natives and residents (naturales o moradores en estos reinos) were equated in
their right to obtain seignorial jurisdiction and distinguished from people who continued
to reside elsewhere. See also the response of Madrid to the royal letter dated November 9,
1734, in AVM, secretara 234839; the manifest written by Juan de Peralta on Septem-
ber 28, 1713, in AVM, secretara 239463; and the case of Antonio Ventura, debated in
the cmara of Castile on March 28, 1770, in AGS, GJ 873.
78. The scal of the cmara of Castile on September 4, 1773, in AGS, GJ 873. The
original reads: Don Bernardo de Begue goza de los privilegios de naturaleza de estos
reinos por haber tenido residencia y domicilio permanentes en ellos por muchos aos . . .
y por hallarse casado con hijos y arraigado en el principado de Asturias. . . . Que la carta
de naturaleza que solicita no puede ser otra que la declaracin de naturaleza . . . que
siendo esta declaracin quasi debida de justicia a quien ya tiene como el don Bernardo
Buegues la participacin de los privilegios de natural de estos reinos y no necesitandose
para la concesin de esta limitada gracia el consentimiento de las ciudades de voto
en cortes. See also the decision of the cmara of Castile on February 4, 1778, in AGS,
GJ 873.
79. Consulta of June 21, 1776, in AGS, GJ 873. The original reads: sera muy justo y
Notes to Pages 7982 233

conveniente al estado que por la concesin de esta y de las dems naturalezas semajantes
no se grave con servicios alguno pecuniario a los extranjeros ya avecindados en Espaa,
para que con este estmulo se animan otros a solicitar igual gracia y avecindarse en estos
80. Consulta of February 1, 1764, in AGS, GJ 873.
81. AGS, GJ 873, for example, contains many different types of dispensas, covering the
period 175988, among which are naturalization letters.
82. Razn que puede ofrecer sobre concesiones de naturaleza de estos reinos, an
anonymous pamphlet, probably dated in the 1710s in AGS, GJ 873. The original reads:
es evidente que los soberanos son legisladores que segn las circunstancias de los sujetos
y como ms bien les agradare pueden sin nota y s con maduro acuerdo excepcionar a
algunos extranjeros para las dignidades eclesisticas y mandando a la cmara los natu-
ralice en vista de la gracia, porque de lo contrario se seguira una total subordinacin o
sujecin de la soberana, lo que es absurdo y muy nocivo y por la misma razn se han
visto innitos ejemplares en todos los reinos cristianos con singular acierto. See also
opinion of the cmara of Castile dated March 21, 1769, in AGS, GJ 873, and Dios,
Gracia, merced y patronazgo, 32728.
83. Castro y Bravo, Los estudios, 288.
84. Correspondence of the cmara of Castile with the audiencias of Barcelona, Aragon,
and Valencia in AGS, GJ 873. See also cdula of July 7, 1723, in ACV, SA-Ced/Prag.
85. Discussion concerning the case of Ramn Ri, a clergyman native of Majorca who
wished to hold an ecclesiastical ofce in Crdoba: consulta of November 11, 1787, in
AGS, GJ 873.
86. Letter of Juan Coln dated Madrid June 26, 1788, in AGS, GJ 873. The original
reads: [they are attached] a lo reducido del peasco y no pueden pensar en otra parte
para su colocacin . . . se quedan estancados en la isla y preocupados de un error heredi-
tario se persuaden que se les hara grave injuria si se abriese la puerta al forastero para
ocuparles su corto caudal, cuando ellos tampoco haban de disfrutar del continente
aunque se les abriera la puerta. As discurren ya porque no han visto ms tierra y se les
gura que no son aqu de la misma naturaleza los hombres, ya porque tiemblan por falta
de uso al pensar que han de salir de su casa, bien como aquel que habiendo estado toda su
vida encerrado entre cuatro paredes creyera que poniendo slo el pie en la calle haban de
acometerle mil monstruosos. . . . Como en el cuerpo natural la circulacin de la sangre, as
en el eclesistico y poltico la correspondencia mutua y participacin de ocios lo que
conserva su constitucin sana y complexin robusta.
87. The opinion of the scal dated September 24, 1772, was included in the delibera-
tions in the case of Pedro Carlos Aball in AGS, GJ 873.
88. Jimnez Sureda, Aliengenas, 1110.
89. Discurso contra la idea de poner en prctica los antiguados fueros del reino de
Aragn y privilegio de que slo sus nacionales obtuviesen los empleos de administracin
de justicia, dated in Zaragoza on July 30, 1748, in BPR, II 2832, no. 16, 283R290V.
90. The opinion of the scal, dated September 24, 1772, in the case of Pedro Carlos
Aball, in AGS, GJ 873.
234 Notes to Page 83

91. The French Council in the Canary Island, writing to the French minister of foreign
affairs in 1797: Guimer Ravina, Burguesa extranjera, 115n57.
92. This regime was called fuero de extranjera. It included the liberty to enter and
leave Spain with or without goods, to open shops, and to carry arms. Foreigners could
also trade with enemy nations and even sell them Spanish goods. They either paid re-
duced taxes or none at all. They were exempt from lodging soldiers in their houses, could
freely decide on the price of their goods, and their shops and books could rarely be
inspected by local ofcials. Foreigners could also have their own lawyers, representatives,
agents, and notaries, and they usually had their own consul and judge ( juez conservador).
They could inherit and give property in inheritance. In fact, the only serious disadvantage
was their inability to engage in the Spanish American trade or to hold public ofce or
ecclesiastical benece. A list of the benets enjoyed by foreign merchants is included in
Alvarez y Valds, Los extranjeros, 40113; Eugenio Larruga y Boneta, Historia de la
Real y General Junta de Comercio, Moneda y Minas y Dependencias de Extranjeros,
Madrid, 1799 (MSS Bell Library, University of MinnesotaTwin Cities Campus), vol. 3,
book 2, chap. 2, 133R8R; the prologue to the Indice cronolgico de los reales decretos,
consultas, rdenes y expedientes que existen en el Archivo de la Secretara de Dependen-
cias y Negocios de Extranjeros in AHN, estado, libro 683; letter of the Junta de Com-
ercio y Agricultura of Valencia dated April 3, 1773, in AHN, estado 6293/66; and
consulta of the Junta de Comercio, Moneda y Dependencias de Extranjeros dated De-
cember 22, 1778, in AHN, estado 5042. The origin of these privileges was mentioned, for
example, in Indice de los captulos de la obra Comercio de extranjeros en Espaa . . . in
AHN, estado 647/16. The importance of international treaties as guideline for the treat-
ment of foreigners was mentioned in the opinion of the teniente primero of Sevilla of
1773 in AHN, estado 6293/63, 1314. The fuero de extranjera was studied by Per-
court Garca, Una institucin.
93. Letter dated April 3, 1773, AHN, estado 6293/66. The original read: ellos
participan (aunque no lo quieren confesar) en los mismos benecios que los naturales en
el interior del reino, y aunque no lograsen otro que venir a l con tan humildes y bajos
principios y labrarse su fortuna con perjuicio de vuestros vasallos, que en su defecto
haran lo mismo y tomaran este carrera, parece que eran sucientes para que abrazasen
gustosos las leyes fundamentales de este reino y obedeciesen vuestras suaves y soberanos
preceptos ciegamente. Al contrario, seor: los resisten con todas sus fuerzas y no omiten
medio por irregular que sea para no observarlos; Llegue, pues, seor, el da claro y feliz
en que renazca el antiguo y oreciente comercio de nuestra Espaa. Vengan en hora
buena a ella extranjeros comerciantes, artesanos e industriosos, que se sujetan a nuestras
leyes y cargas del estado y disfruten con nosotros los benecios; and La razn y las
buenas mximas de poltica claman y dicen que el que participa de los benecios de la
repblica est tambin a las cargas de ella.
94. Recopilacin de Castilla, law 66, title 4, book 2. The original reads: y que sean
admitidos como los dems vecinos de l a los pastos y dems comodidades. See also
Indice de varias leyes . . . in AHN, estado 5042 and the draft of cdula where a 1722
decree is mentioned, in AHN, estado 5042. The same issue was raised by Francisco
Cobarrus and Antonio Ponz in the early 1780s according to Diz, Idea, 335 and 339.
95. The junta de extranjeros was established in 1714, abolished in 1717, and re-
Notes to Pages 8386 235

established in 1721. In 1748 it became part of the Junta de Comercio. The history of the
junta is described in Indice cronolgico de los reales decretos, consultas y rdenes y
expedientes que existen en el archivo de la secretara de dependencias y negocios de
extranjeros . . . in AHN, estado libro 683. See also Toms Ortiz de la Torre, Derecho,
71213, and Alvarez y Valds, Los extranjeros, 41318.
96. Opinion of the scal of the council of state dated March 12, 1766, in AHN, estado
5042. The original reads: Han pasado a ser vasallos de esta corona, sujetos a la clase y
leyes de espaoles.
97. The text of the 1716 instruction was reproduced in the Novsima Recopilacin, law
3, title 11, book 6. Its importance over time is evident from its continuous citation. See,
e.g., the royal order sent to the governor of Cdiz on March 10, 1762, in AHN, estado
647/17, and the letter of the Junta de Comercio y Agricultura of Valencia, dated April 3,
1773, in AHN, estado 6293/66, 34.
98. Instructions were sent to different authorities in Catalonia, Valencia, Aragon, Na-
varre, Granada, Galicia, Guipzcoa, Castile, Extramadura, Campo de Gibraltar, Ma-
jorca, Orn, Ceuta, Canarias, Bilbao, Madrid, Andalusia, Ciudad Real, and Oviedo:
AHN, estado 6291/2. See also Villar Garca, Un siglo.
99. Cdula of June 28, 1764, cited in Indice de varias leyes que existen y estn en
prctica en la monarqua espaola, relativas al establecimiento de extranjeros en estos
reinos, in AHN, estado 5042, 56.
100. AHN, estado 6291/3 to 6291/19; 6292/20 to 6292/57; and 6293/61 to
6293/79. These lists cover the following municipal communities: Orn, Madrid, San
Sebastin, Jan, Puerto Santa Mara, San Lcar, Cdiz, Mlaga, Teruel, Palma (Majorca),
Pamplona, Campo de Gibraltar, Tenerife, Zaragoza, Catalonia, La Corua, Len, Val-
ladolid, Tordesillas, Segovia, Zamora, Valencia, Ciudad Real, Bilbao, Seville, and Mur-
cia. The difculties faced by municipal communities wishing to implement this classica-
tion are described, for example, in AHN, estado 6293/63.
101. Letter of the marquis de Croix to the Junta de Comercio, Moneda y Dependencias
de Extranjeros, dated March 16, 1765, in AHN, estado 647/21. See also discussions
concerning the cdula of June 28, 1764, in AHN, estado 6291/2, and Larruga y Boneta,
Historia de la Real y General Junta de Comercio, Moneda y Minas y Dependencias de
Extranjeros, Madrid, 1799 (MSS Bell Library, University of MinnesotaTwin Cities
Campus), vol. 3, book 2, chap. 1, 137R and V.
102. AHN, estado 6291/4.
103. AHN, estado 6293/63.
104. Letter of the Junta de Comercio y Agricultura of Valencia, dated April 3, 1773, in
AHN, estado 6293/66, 11.
105. Letter of Gregorio Portora, judge (alcalde de crmen) of the court (audiencia) of
La Corua, dated April 19, 1766, in AHN, estado 6292/39, and Sevilles town council
meetings of April 1, 1773, and May 5, 1773, reproduced in AHN, estado 6293/63.
106. AHN, estado 6291/1.
107. AHN, estado 2893, and Novsima Recopilacin, law 4, title 11, book 6.
108. Cdula of June 28, 1764, in Nota de varias leyes . . . in AHN, estado 5042, 5.
109. Discussion in the junta on May 25, 1765, and June 21, 1971, in AHN, estado
647/21 and 5042, respectively.
236 Notes to Pages 8688

110. His opinion dated March 12, 1766, in AHN, estado 5042. The original reads: si
con casa poblada, no hubieren tcita ni expresamente declarado su nimo de permanecer,
porque como el domicilio por s solo es un hecho equvoco que se puede vericar en el
transeunte y en el que se traslada o ja de una vez su residencia en estos reinos, no era fcil
distinguir el verdadero sistema de los domiciliados sin valerse de otras circunstancias y
conjeturas aprobadas por el derecho and si les conviene restituirse con sus padres o sin
ellos a su originaria nacin, o permanecer avecindados entre los espaoles declarando su
nimo inscribindose en la matrcula.
111. Letter by Bartolom Muos dated July 28, 1807, in AVM, secretara 216664.
The original reads: la mente de sta es que en los empadronamientos se aclaren las dudas
que haya con respecto a los franceses existentes en Espaa sobre si son transeuntes o
naturalizados, dejando a su arbitrio en esta ocasin el que eligen el concepto bajo cual
quieren ser considerados, a n de que previa dicha eleccin puedan ser tratados con la
distincin correspondiente a la clase elegida y segn lo prescripto en las leyes de estos
reinos, asi en lo favorable, como en lo gravoso.
112. Teniente primero of Seville, on March 17, 1773, in AHN, estado 6293/63, 13,
19, and 25. The original reads: el reputarse el extranjero por domiciliado no es solo a
benecio suyo, sino tambin de la corona y de los vasallos, por tener este vecino ms que
les ayude a llevar las cargas y consecuentemente, una vez adquirido este derecho por los
medios que se hallan prevenidos por l, no est en su arbitrio el hacer dimisin de l,
como suceder si se le estimase transeundo por slo el hecho de alistarse por tal aunque
concurriese alguna de las circunstancias para reputarlo por domiciliado and es cosa
ms extraa y repugnante al espritu de la misma real cdula, y aun a la letra de ella
apenas se puede dar, que por lo propio si se vericase, no podra menos de ocupar una
gran novedad y aun alteracin en el pueblo mayoritariamente que ya se ha advertido slo
con el rumor de que se entenda e iba a practicarse asi . . . que no siendo asi la causara una
exorbitante alteracin que siempre debe evitarse.
113. The juntas letter of April 3, 1773, in AHN, estado 6293/66, 23 and 5.
114. The scal of the council of state in 1766. The scal also stated that among the
alleged foreigners, there were in fact many (true) Spaniards. The foreigners, he said
suponen una porcin numerosa de verdaderos espaoles: his opinion, inserted in the
consulta of the Junta de Comercio, Moneda y Dependencias de Extranjeros of June 7,
1766, in AHN, estado 5042. The wish to bring to Spain useful Catholic foreigners was
especially strong during the eighteenth century: Domnguez Ortiz, La sociedad espaola,
vol. 1, 24951. Contemporary writers echoed this interest: Uztariz, Theory and Practice,
3740, and Fernndez Navarrete, Conservacin, 12333.
115. Opinion of the representative of royal interests ( scal ) of the council of state, as
reproduced and adopted in the consulta of February 26, 1774, in AHN, estado 5042,
fols. 7580. The original reads: dos naciones enemigas, en virtud de dichas leyes, se
convirtieron en una, guerrera y poderosa . . . acudan personas de toda la cristianidad
segn crnicas antiguas. Present-day research partially afrms this image, insisting, for
example, on the role of foreigners in both the reconquista and the resettlement of Castile.
116. This was the opinion of the council of state in a draft of a letter it wrote to the
Conde de Floridablanca in July 1791 in AHN, estado 5042. The confusion apparently
Notes to Pages 8890 237

continued into the 1800s: see, e.g., the letter of Bartolom Muoz, dated July 28, 1807, in
AVM, secretara 216664.
117. A copy of the 1791 instructions is inserted in AGI, consulados 53. The 1791
instruction was also reproduced in the Novsima Recopilacin, laws 8 and 9, title 11,
book 6. The implementation of the 1791 instruction was studied by Salas Ausens, Les
Franais, and Ozanam, Le recensement.
118. Cdula of July 20, 1791, in AHN, estado 5042. The oath was as follows: to
observe the Catholic religion and to be loyal to it and to the king, wishing to become his
vassals and subjecting themselves to the laws and practices of these kingdoms. The
original reads: observar la religin catlica y guardar delidad a ella y al rey Nuestro
Seor y querer ser su vasallo, sujetndose a las leyes y prcticas de estos reinos.
119. Letter of Conde de Floridablanca to Manuel Ximnez Bretn, dated July 12,
1971, in AHN, estado 5042. The original reads: renuncindose a todo fuero de extran-
jera y a toda relacin, unin y dependencia del pas en que hayan nacido y prometiendo
no usar de la proteccin de l, ni de sus embajadores, ministros o cnsules.
120. Instruccin que debe servir de regla para distinguir los extranjeros transeuntes y
domiciliados . . . in AHN, estado 5042. The original reads: se deben entender y reputar
en la clase de vasallos espaoles, separados de su originario fuero y pabelln.
121. Puntos contenidos en la real cdula . . . in AHN, estado 5042. The oath of
transitory foreigners included respecto, sumisin y obediencia al soberano y leyes del
122. Salas Ausens, Les Franais, 169, and Villar Garca, Un siglo, 92223.
123. The 1791 instruction clearly stated that foreigners who had declared themselves
domiciled would have to be accepted by the municipalities where they lived: Instruccin
que debe servir de regla . . . in AHN, estado 5042. The same idea was expressed in Lar-
ruga y Boneta, Historia de la Real y General Junta de Comercio, Moneda y Minas y De-
pendencias de Extranjeros, Madrid, 1799 (MSS Bell Library, University of Minnesota
Twin Cities Campus), vol. 3, book 2, chap. 1, 133V.
124. Puntos contenidos en la real cdula, instruccin y declaraciones posteriores
expedidas sobre la salida de extranjeros o su permanencia en Espaa in AHN, estado
5042. The original reads: esta libertad es una gracia particular que ha querido conceder
el rey por pura moderacin y equidad, pues estando sealados en las leyes de Espaa los
extranjeros que deben reputarse por avecindados, pudiera su majestad haber mandado
desde luego que se les sujetara a las cargas y obligaciones de tales . . . que son propios de su
soberana. A similar idea is expressed in the letter of Bartolom Muoz, dated July 28,
1807, in AVM, secretara 216664.
125. Letter of the legal adviser to the captain general of Mlaga dated July 16, 1765,
and the answer of the junta in AHN, estado 6292/23.
126. Family pacts were celebrated in 1733, 1743, and 1762 between the kings of
France and Spain. A summary of their contents is included in Daz Plaza, La historia de
Espaa, 17475, 18991, and 22834. The third pact (1762), which lasted until 1793,
included direct reference to the status of individual vassals. It was studied in Pont de
Nemours, Le pacte de famille; Palacio Atard, El tercer pacto; Ozanam, Les origines;
and Hernndez Franco, Del tercer. The pact was invoked by litigants, e.g., by Nicols
238 Notes to Pages 9094

Campe, a Sicilian, in AN/Q, FE 34 vol. 94 no. 3643, 1023. In 1782, Joseph de Copons
attested that his family immigrated to France because of the family pacts, but that despite
this immigration it continued to be Spanish: the cmara of Castile on July 20, 1782, in
AGS, GJ 873.
127. The activities of the French consul in Valencia were described in the letter of the
local Junta de Comercio y Agricultura of April 3, 1773, in AHN, estado 6293/66, 45.
The response of the French community to these measures is briey mentioned in Girard,
Le commerce franaise, 57178. A similar position was adopted by the English consul in
1714 according to Carrasco Gonzlez, La colonia, 33435. The consul specically
rejected the idea that individuals could be transformed into Spaniards without openly
expressing a desire to permanently reside in Spain.
128. Letter of the French ambassador addressed to the marquis of Grimaldi, dated
Madrid March 25, 1771, in the Consulta General of February 26, 1744, AHN, estado
5042, 1822. The French ambassador was again active in 1807, according to the letter of
Bartolom Muoz dated July 28, 1807, in AVM, secretara 216664. See also Grand-
maison, Lambassade Franaise, 4854. Although the measure was general, the French
ambassador believed that it specically targeted the French community and was moti-
vated by the fear of the spreading of revolutionary ideas. He complained that the Spanish
authorities were inexible, and he argued that it was the end of Spanish tolerance of
foreigners. Rather than supporting integration, these measures aimed at expelling for-
eigners from Spain.
129. Consulta of February 26, 1774, in AHN, estado 5042, 7375. A similar opinion
was expressed by the procurador general del reino, who in 1768 requested the king to
grant special privileges to domiciled foreigners: Consulta of February 26, 1774, in AHN,
estado 5042, fols. 1718
130. Alvarez, Instituciones de derecho real, 6667 and 8284. The original reads:
Por naturaleza entendemos una inclinacin que reconocen entre s los hombres que
nacen o viven en una misma tierra y bajo un mismo gobierno. . . . Esta consideracin tiene
tanta fuerza que hace imitar perfectamente la naturaleza; pues as como sta admite en el
gremio de parientes a los extraos que se hacen adoptivos, as tambin aquella abriga en
su seno a los extranjeros que legtimamente se domicilian.
131. Por el scal de su magestad en defensa de la respuesta que dio a las pretensiones
introducidas por los hijos nacidos en Espaa de padres extranjeros in AGI, IG 2301, 4R.
132. Fernndez Navarrete, Conservacin, 132.
133. Novsima Recopilacin, law 3, title 11, book 6.

Chapter 5. Naturaleza: From Castile to Spanish America

1. Recopilacin de Indias, law 28, title 27, book 9 refers to natives of our kingdoms
of Castile, Len, Aragon, Valencia, Catalonia, Navarre, Majorca and Minorca. Never-
theless, administrative and judicial records identify this group as including natives of the
kingdoms of Spain. It is unclear whether previous to this declaration, natives of the
crown of Aragon were permitted to immigrate and to trade in the New World: Ramos
Prez, La aparente; Morlez Alvarez, Los extranjeros, 2224; and Veitia Linaje, Norte
de la contratacin, 32829.
Notes to Pages 9498 239

2. Haring, Trade and Navigation; Hernndez Ruz de Villa, Emigracin a Indias;

Garca-Baquero Gonzlez, Cdiz y el Atlntico; Garca Fuentes, El comercio espaol;
Bordej Morencos, Trco de Indias; Ruiz Rivera and Garca Bernal, Cargadores a
Indias; and Oliva Melgar, Realidad.
3. Ayala, Diccionario de Gobierno, vol. 6, 11131; Konetzke, Legislacin; and
Morales Alvarez, Los extranjeros, 2595.
4. Nunn, Naturalization, 62 and in his Foreign Immigrants, 12, 111, and 11314;
Garca-Maurio Mundi, La pugna, 41; Campbell, Foreigners, 53.
5. Morales Alvarez, Los extranjeros, 33 and 53, and Parrn Salas, El nacionalismo.
6. Campbell, Foreigners, 15863, and Gmez Prez, Los extranjeros, 29597.
7. Smith, Spanish Guild Merchant, 91111; Real Daz, El consulado; Heredia
Herrera, Apuntes; and Ordenanzas del consulado. See also Recopilacin de Indias,
title 46, book 9.
8. The House of Trade was established in 1503. Originally, both the merchant guild
and the House of Trade were located in Seville. In the beginning of the eighteenth century
both institutions were moved to Cdiz, which, contrary to Seville, was an ocean and not a
river port and was better able to service larger vessels. Despite these changes, most people
continued to refer to the guild as Sevilles merchant guild, and so will I: Girard, La
rivalit commerciale; Zumalacarregui, Las ordenanzas; Gildas, La casa; Crespo So-
lana, La casa de contratacin; and Cerrera Pery, La casa de contratacin.
9. Auke P. Jacobs, Los movimientos migratorios and in his Legal. See also Recopila-
cin de Indias, book 9, titles 27 and 46.
10. Bernal, La nanciacin de la carrera; Lynch, Hispanic World, 24349; and Domn-
guez Ortiz, Los extranjeros, 4849.
11. Domnguez Ortiz, La concesin, 233.
12. Opinion of the scal on February 23, 1762, in AGN/L, RTC, contencioso 252,
cuaderno 61. A similar claim was made by Sevilles merchant guild in 1592 according to
the cdula of April 27, 1592, reproduced in BNE MSS 20.06712, 4R. The position of
the Castilian cortes with regard to foreign presence in Spanish America was described in
Martnez Cards, Las Indias y las cortes, 3243 and in his Asuntos.
13. Cdulas of July 14, 1561, and February 21, 1562, in BNE, MSS 20.06712 and
cdula of July 24, 1566, in BNE, MSS 3045, 21314. Molinari, Naturalidad, 705
mentions a 1505 ruling according to which foreigners who had lived in Seville, Cdiz, and
Jerz for fteen or twenty years, were married, and had property would be considered
natives of the kingdoms and allowed to trade in Spanish America.
14. Trueba, Sevilla, 9395.
15. Cdula of October 2, 1608, in BNE, MSS 20.06712, 1R9R reproduces both the
petitions of merchants and royal responses. See also Extracto de las reales cdulas . . .
para que los extranjeros no se embarcasen a Indias ni tratasen en ellas in AGI, con-
sulados 892A, carpeta 2/1, and Veitia Linaje, Norte de la contratacin, 33134. The
legal changes introduced as a result of the guilds activities are inserted in the Recopila-
cin de Indias, laws 3134, title 27, book 9.
16. Luque, La avera.
17. Cdula of July 7, 1592, reproduced in BNE, MSS 20.06712, 4R5R. The original
reads: Item que porque a causa de la naturaleza a que con el tiempo han adquirido
240 Notes to Pages 98101

muchos extranjeros . . . tienen libertad de tratar y cargar . . . en que se entiende que ha

resultado mucho dao y perjuicio . . . para remedio de lo suso dicho su majestad ser
servido de mandar con graves penas que de aqu en adelante solo puedan tratar en las
Indias aquellos extranjeros que conforme a cdulas y ordenanzas de su majestad lo
pueden hacer . . . y porque el nmero de los dichos extranjeros va creciendo en dicha
contratacin su majestad mandara que de aqu adelante no se les d ni conceda la dicha
libertad a los dichos extranjeros en general ni en particular de poder tratar en las Indias,
ni se d licencia a ninguno para poder pasar a ellas.
18. Rodrguez Vicente, Los cargadores, and Bernal, La nanciacin de la carrera,
21319. Posterior negotiations are studied by Oliva Melgar, La negociacin.
19. Cdula of October 2, 1608, in BNE, MSS 20.06712, 5V9R, which describe what
had happened after 1592. See also Recopilacin de Indias, law 31, title 27, book 9.
20. These considerations were still present in the 1750s and 1760s according to an
undated petition by the merchant guild of Seville and the printed manifest titled noticias
de las diligencias hechas entre el consulado y los hijos de extranjeros, both in AGI,
consulados 892A.
21. Opinion of the representative of royal interests ( scal ) of the House of Trade in
1635, cited in Girard, Le commerce franais, 575.
22. The merchant guild on March 10, 1764, in AGN/L, RTC, contencioso 252, cua-
derno 77, 2728. The original reads: cuan diverso es el derecho de la residencia en
Indias, que en los reinos de Espaa, porque all la residencia de 10 aos, el matrimonio y
bienes raices hace que el extranjero se tenga por natural, introducindose la naturaleza
por va de prescripcin si concurren los requisitos. Pero en Indias ni el matrimonio ni los
bienes raices ni la habitacin de 10 aos ni la habitacin de 20, hacen naturaleza, sino un
mrito para que el rey en su supremo consejo la dispensa, despachando la carta, que es el
nico medio por donde se adquiere la naturaleza en Indias.
23. Draft and notes on naturalization in Spanish America in BNE, MSS 20.06712,
24. The case of Joseph Morales Frabeva in AGI, Quito 4, 813. Similar arguments
were also invoked in 1640 concerning the status of Portuguese resident in Spanish Amer-
ica: Consulta of December 27, 1640, in AGI, IG 761.
25. The original reads: con que parece se desmiente el cario de la patria, se aanza la
perpetuidad y domicilio en aquellas provincias y cesan muchos de los recelos e inconve-
nientes que suele amenazar su vaga habitacin.
26. Ayala, Diccionario, vol. 6, 126; Gmez Prez, Los extranjeros, 29092; and
AN/Q, gobierno 270, expediente 19.11.1779. See also Tau Anzotegui, Una defensa.
27. AN/Q, gobierno 21, expediente 19.11.1763. The original reads: porque me hizo
constar ser irlands catlico y porque en sus costumbres y procederes no hall cosa en
contrario, ni he tenido la menor experiencia y no ignorando los privilegios que gozen los
de esta nacin y que profesan la religin catlica en los dominios de nuestro soberano en
Europa, and una vez logrado el hallarme distante del riesgo que hu y he conseguido el
seguro de la tranquilidad en mi cristiana profesin, gozando de este benecio el espacio
de diez aos a que moro entre espaoles y sus tierras, pretendo y protesto jurar domicilio
y vecindad en el lugar que ms cmodo me fuese de los de esta provincia de Quito . . . se
sirva de admitirme al gremio de la nacin espaola y conferirme vena de que pueda
Notes to Pages 10104 241

avecindarme en cualquier lugar que jurase domicilio sin ms contradicciones ni estorbos

con pretexto de ser extranjero, pues yo no debo denominarme por tal.
28. His petition of October 13, 1775, in AN/Q, FE 34, vol. 94, no. 3643, 1023.
29. Petitions of Gerardo Antonio Pose of April, 18, 1805, in AGN/BA, 93077, and
Antonio de Quiros in Molinari, Documentos para la historia, vol. 12, 20910.
30. Both examples are mentioned by Garca Fuentes, El comercio espaol, 5354.
31. The case of Joseph Valois, debated in AGN/L, RTC, contencioso 252, cuaderno 77,
2829. The original reads: Este disimulo es limitado, concedido para aquellos que
despus de 20 aos arraigaron su hacienda en bienes muebles y fundaron con un matri-
monio casa y familia. Esta especie de extranjero es de otra calidad que la de los extran-
jeros no arraigados sino sueltos.
32. Cdula of October 17, 1743, in AGI, consulados, libro 445, 16467. The original
reads: este requisito lo pidiese la ley ms para excluir de la naturaleza al extranjero
casado con natural de otros reinos y no de estos, como motivo que persuade el nimo
transeunte que para negar este goce al perfecto estado de celibato, poda dispensarse
respecto de que con la edad de este interesado y dems actos externos, se maniesta su
constante nimo de permanecer en Espaa.
33. AGI, consulados, libro 445, 17678. The original reads: con que ha acreditado su
nimo de permanecer en estos dominios explicado antes por haber vivido ms de 33 aos
con casa poblada y estar recibido por vecino en el ayuntamiento de la mencionada ciudad
de Cdiz desde el 1739 . . . por noticias extrajudiciales [se sabe] de que el pretendiente no
era de los extranjeros transeuntes, sino es de los domiciliados . . . y de quien tena
bastantes fundamentos para persuadirse a que no volvera a su orgen.
34. BPR, II 2755, no. 6, 38R39V.
35. His petition in AGI, contratacin 51B. The original reads: estando como est
connaturalizado y con el efecto y servicios que ha hecho pues no lo excede ninguno de los
naturales en sus buenos deseos y es la disposicin de las ordenanzas pues por ellos se
conoce el nimo de permanecer, que es la razn que hubo para la prohibicin.
36. Cdula of November 5, 1790, in AGI, IG 1536. The original reads: obstuviste
desde el principio de asistir a las juntas nacionales de los napolitanos y contribuir a sus
gastos, sin permitir se os incluye en la matrcula de ellos y que os haveis portado siempre
como verdadero espaol en vuestro giro, negociaciones y dems actos.
37. AGI, consulados, libro 445, 16465.
38. Nunn, Naturalization, 6566.
39. Consulta of February 25, 1644, in AGI, IG 764; letter of the guild to the king, dated
March 15, 1645, attached to the consulta above mentioned; and royal decree of April 22,
1645, inserted in the proceedings initiated by Pedro Colarte in AGI, contratacin 50B,
2530. Veitia Linaje, Norte de la contratacin, 33334, mentions the willingness of the
merchant guild to pay compensation to these foreigners whose naturalization would be
revoked. See also Domnguez Ortiz, La Concesin, 23435.
40. Cdula of July 28, 1634, in AGI, IG 1536.
41. The decree that eventually revoked the letters indeed caused problems in Seville, as
witnessed, for example, by the petitions of Domingo Rodrguez and the brothers Gaspar
and Antonio Reales Passano whose letters were revoked: AGI, IG 764.
42. These practices continued well into the eighteenth century: the case of Santiago
242 Notes to Pages 10408

Garbey in BNE, MSS 19.512, 43637. See also Domnguez Ortiz, La Concesin,
43. Ayala, Diccionario, vol. 10, 810. See also Morales Alvarez, Los extranjeros, 205.
44. Escalona y Agero, Arcae limensis, 158.
45. Cdula of February 10, 1795, in AGI, IG 821. Gracias al sacar were royal decrees
that declared, for example, that a mestizo was white, or that allowed minors to act as
though they were of age: Santos, El rgimen de las gracias al sacar.
46. The scal of the audiencia of Lima on February 23, 1762, in AGN/L, RTC, conten-
cioso 252, cuaderno 61, 6364. The original reads: y otros nacidos en reinos y provin-
cias no sujetas al dominio y jurisdiccin del rey, aunque naturalizados en Espaa por
responder a exigencias de las leyes de Castilla o por privilegios particulares de ellos para
residir y habitar en Espaa, para el efecto de tratar y contratar en Indias deben ser tenidos
por extranjeros.
47. Boissonnade, Histoire de la runion.
48. AGN/L, RTC, contencioso 252, cuaderno 66; cdulas dated January 21, 1788, and
January 18, 1785, in AGI, IG 1536 and Morales Alvarez, Los extranjeros, 38082. I will
return to these issue in chapter 6.
49. Recopilacin de Indias, law 27, title 27, book 9. See also Hevia Bolaos, Curia
philipica, 266.
50. AGI, consulados, libros 445 and 446 and legajos 788 and 892A; AGI, IG 1538 and
2301; AGI, EC 1057A; and AGI, contratacin 50B. See also consultas of the Council of the
Indies of February 9, and November 9, 1742, in BPR, II 2755, nos. 23 and 24, 149V
160V, and the dissertation of Juan Antonio Enrique, minister of the navy in San Sebastin,
dated October 10, 1785, in BPR, II 12.868, no. 4, 39R46V. Some of these documents
were published by Muro Orejn, Cedularios americanos, vol. 3, 3037 and 31719. This
conict was studied by Gutirrez de Rubalcava, Tratado histrico, 12228; Garca Ber-
nal, Los espaoles; Morales Alvarez, Los extranjeros, 119246; and Garca-Maurio
Mundi, La pugna.
51. As early as 1624, Guillermo Bequer requested a declaration stating that he was
allowed to participate in the Spanish American trade despite being the son of a foreigner.
This declaration was necessary, he explained, because people believed the contrary: his
petition of March 5, 1624, in AGI, contratacin 50B.
52. A summary of the guilds arguments is included, for example, in Respuesta que
dan algunos hijos de Espaoles antiguos a un papel que se ha divulgado con ttulo de
noticia . . . de las vejaciones y daos que los hijos de extranjeros naturales del reino ha
hecho y causado el consulado (undated and anonymous), in AGI, consulados 892A.
53. Noticia de las diligencias hechas entre el consulado y los hijos de extranjeros en
grave dependencia que se subscit en el ao 1719 y se feneci en el de 1728 in AGI,
consulados 892A, 4. The original reads: porque ni el tiempo de la residencia ni el
nacimiento dan naturaleza y solo la conere el nimo de permanecer continuado por el
tiempo que prescriben las leyes del reino.
54. The burden of proof was specically mentioned in the Respuesta que dan algunos
hijos de espaoles los antiguos a un papel de las vejaciones y daos que a los hijos de
extranjeros naturales del reino han hecho y causado el consulado. in AGI, consulados
892A, 14. This was also the regular practice in subsequent years.
Notes to Pages 10809 243

55. The case of Feliz Linze, debated on December 15, 1727, in AGI, consulados, libro
446, 88, and the cases of Juan Francisco Agens, Francisco Derbao, and Andrian Pedro
Barnes, of 1722 and 1723 in AGI, IG 1538. The term used in Spanish was natural y
originario de estos reinos y capaz para comerciar en Indias. This was the practice until
1812: AGI, consulados 892A, and Dictamen de Juan Antonio Enrique, ministro general
de marina . . . que explica los requisitos que deben concurrir en los genizaros para obtener
los privilegios de naturalizacin y que con sus embarcaciones y bandera espaola pueden
comerciar en Europa y Amrica, dated in San Sebastin on October 10, 1785, in BPR, II
12.868, no. 4, 39R46V.
56. His petition discussed on April 6, 1772, in AGI, consulados 892A, carpeta 2/2.
57. Letter of Domingo Orrante to the audiencia of Lima, dated February 4, 1762, in
AGN/L, RTC, contencioso 252, cuaderno 61, 6064, on pp. 6162 and the discussion
that follow, especially on pp. 64 and 6667.
58. Consulta of the Council of the Indies dated February 9, 1742, in BPR, II 2755, no.
23, 149V153V; cdula of April 20, 1742, in AGI, consulados, libro 446, 33540; and
different documents in AGI, consulados 892A, mostly from the 1760s. This issue was
also mentioned in the Noticia de las diligencias hechas entre el consulado y los hijos de
extranjeros: AGI, consulados 892A, 3061.
59. Noticia de las diligencias . . . , AGI, consulados 892A, 7, 48, and 51. The original
reads: naturaleza nativa y propiamente originaria and era mejor la naturaleza de
aquel que as l como los ascendientes de quienes vena, fueron e moraron all en la tierra
donde es el seor. The question of whether the conversion of foreigners into natives was
ever complete and whether it gave the community sufcient assurance that those who
were once external can now be trusted had already been invoked by ius commune jurists:
Riesenberg, Civicism, 240.
60. Por el scal de su majestad en defensa de la respuesta que dio a las pretensiones
introducidas por los hijos nacidos en Espaa de padres extranjeros. in AGI, IG 2301, 6V
and 7R. The original reads: Adems, de que si se mira con reexin esta materia, no es
dudable hay razn de diferencia entre los naturales originarios y los hijos de extranjeros,
pues aquellos siempre han estado en el dominio de su majestad, sirvindole como tambin
sus ascendientes, sin tener conecciones extraas y asi su amor es ms radical y perfecto y
los hijos de extranjeros no pueden dejar de tener la afeccin al propio orgen que el
derecho le considera aun ms fuerte que el de la natividad. . . . Tienen en los dominios
extranjeros los ascendientes y parientes a quienes miraran con el cario que induce la
propia sangre. . . . De esta razn de afeccin, resulta otra de poltica de cualquiera bien
ordenada repblica, pues teniendo estos naturales el conocimiento con las potencias
extranjeras por las conecciones de parentezco y amistad . . . podrn participar las noticias
del estado del reino, sus disposiciones, progresos y resoluciones, lo cual debe prohibirse
como tal perjudicial al bien pblico.
61. Undated answer of the sons of foreigners, in AGI, consulados 982A, 1415. The
original reads: despues de su nacimiento, establecimiento y dems circunstancias que
aseguran la permenencia y sin haber conocido otro soberano ni tributndole, ni otra
patria, domicilio, vecindad o habitacion . . . por hallarse calicados con los requisitos
tocados de nacimiento, establecimiento y dems y sin experiencia de alguno que se haya
revocado o vuelto a los dominios de sus mayores y ascendientes.
244 Notes to Pages 11012

62. Consulta of November 9, 1742, in BPR, II 2755, no. 24, 153V160V, 157V. The
original reads: nadie podr probar ser descendiente de los compaeros de Tuval que de
resulta de la confusin de las lenguas vinieron a poblar a Espaa, habiendo sido sta tan
inundada de inumerables naciones que por gran timbre el ms lingudo suele alegar su
orgen de la nacin goda (mucho posterior a otras que dominaron la Espaa) . . . hasta
ahora, nadie ha imaginado ni pensado en formar un rbol genealgico declarando qu
grados de antiguedad en el orgen se necesita para comerciar en Indias.
63. His case, discussed in 1771 and 1772, in AGI, consulados, libro 445, 33842. The
original reads: se le tenga y repute por espaol nacido y procreado en estos reinos.
64. The argument that different immigration policies produced a different regime in
Spain and Spanish America was included, for example, in Noticia de los diligencias
hechas entre el consulado y los hijos de extranjeros, undated pamphlet in AGI, con-
sulados 892A, 12.
65. Recopilacin de Indias, laws 124 and 1624, title 27, book 9, and title 23, book
3. The effects of these measures were studied by Rodrguez Vicente, Los extranjeros;
Ortz de la Tabla y Ducasse, Extranjeros; Moreno, Los extranjeros; and Herzog,
Stranger. The extraordinary nature of these grants and their revocability were men-
tioned in Veitia Linaje, Norte de la contratacin, 336. The relation between these grants
and naturalization was explored in Nunn, Naturalization, 6263 and in his Foreign
Immigrants, 98.
66. Limas merchant guild on December 16, 1761, in AGN/L, RTC, contencioso 252,
cuaderno 61, 15, on pp. 34.
67. Cdula of October 14, 1676, in AGI, IG 1536.
68. Cdula of September 15, 1784, in AGN/BA 93035.
69. Limas guild was studied by Moreyra y Paz Soldn, El tribunal del consulado de
Lima, sus antecedentes and in El tribunal del consulado de Lima: Quaderno de juntas;
Malca Olgun, Gobierno and in his El tribunal; Rodrguez Vicente, El tribunal del
consulado de Lima en la primera mitad; Melzer, Bastion of Commerce; and Smith,
Estudio histrico del consulado. In pp. 13944 and 155 Smith studies the guilds
involvement in the prosecution of foreigners during the eighteenth century. Mercantile
activities in other parts of the Spanish America are described in: AGI, consulados 788;
AGN/BA, 93337; AGN/BA, 93973; Town council meetings of February 6, July
1, November 24, 1730, and October 23, 1732, in Acuerdos del extinguido cabildo de
Buenos Aires, ser. 2, vol. 6, libros 1113, 1718, 241, 294, and 55458; meetings of
April 12, 1734, and June 9 and 17, 1738, in Acuerdos del extinguido cabildo de Buenos
Aires, ser. 2, vol. 7, libros 2324, 51, 6366, 281, 470, and 47273; meetings of June 30,
July 6 and 14, 1740, and May 24 and July 1, 1743, in Acuerdos del extinguido cabildo de
Buenos Aires, ser. 2, vol. 8, libros 1425, 15155, 42021, and 42728, and so forth.
See also Nunn, Naturalization, 61.
70. AGN/L, RTC, contencioso 252, cuaderno 61, 5152; document of March 1, 1760,
in AGI, consulados 892A; and the guilds letter of March 1, 1759, in AGI, consulados
794. See also Campbell, Foreigners, 156.
71. Cdula of May 10, 1761, in AGN/L, SG, varios 4, cuaderno 122 (another copy of
the same cdula is inserted in AGN/L, RTC, contencioso 252, cuaderno 61, 5356), and
decision of February 23, 1764, in AGN/L, RTC, contencioso 252, cuaderno 77, 1011.
Notes to Pages 11214 245

In his memoirs, Viceroy Manuel de Amat y Juniet recognized the guilds contribution to
the expulsion campaigns: Rodrguez Casado and Prez Embid, Manuel de Amat y Juniet,
22526. Examples of lists elaborated by the guild are found in AGN/L, RTC, conten-
cioso 252, cuaderno 61. See also the representation of the merchant guild of Cdiz, dated
1789 in AGI, consulados 62, 6 bis, and AGI, consulados 92, no. 3.
72. AGN/L, SG, varios 4, cuaderno 148.
73. AG/L, RTC, contencioso 252, cuaderno 66. The original reads: Qu dao es el
que hago yo al tribunal del consulado ni al comercio de esta ciudad y reino, cuando desde
que vine de Espaa la mayor parte del tiempo la he ocupado en asistir y ayudar a los
principales mercaderes.
74. Cdula of March 11, 1723, in AGI, consulados, libro 445.
75. Document dated October 13, 1775, in AN/Q, FE 34, vol. 94, no. 3643, 1023; AN/
Q, gobierno 26, expediente 31.5.1777; and AN/Q, gobierno 29, expediente 31.10.1780.
Campe himself used similar strategies. In 1795 he invoked the military fuero in order to
avoid paying his own debts: AN/Q, gobierno 46, expediente 9.2.1795.
76. AGN/L, RTC, contencioso 252, cuaderno 61, 3.
77. Ibid.
78. Ibid., 2 and 4649.
79. Allegations of Carlos Magron in AN/Q, gobierno 42, expediente 22.10.1790.
80. Nunn, Foreign Immigrants, 11013.
81. AGN/L, RTC, contencioso 252, cuaderno 61, 2, and AGN/L, RTC, contencioso
252, cuadernos 67. Although the Recopilacin de Indias, law 10, title 27, book 9, ruled
that artisans with useful ofces could be allowed to remain in Spanish America, more
important than the legal authorization was the fact that merchants and mercantile inter-
ests were not threatened by the presence of artisans.
82. AGN/L, RTC, contencioso 252, cuaderno 61, 3536 and 43, respectively.
83. His petition, presented in Lima on January 8, 1762, in AGN/L, SG, varios 3,
cuaderno 107, 12. The original reads: Pues mi nacimiento fue en la villa de Cangas del
reino de Galicia sujeta al rey catlico de las Espaas, y nacido de padres notoriamente
calicados e ilustres por serlo del capitn de granaderos don Pedro Mario y de doa
Mara Barrieros y Figueroa, naturales de dicha villa . . . este testimonio denigrativo a mi
persona y haciendo injuria a mis padres cerca a su naturaleza y nobleza que es de la
primera jerarqua en el reino de Galicia y que mis padres y abuelos han servido a su
84. AGN/L, SG, varios 3, cuaderno 107, and AGN/L, RTC, contencioso 252, cua-
derno 77.
85. AGN/L, RTC, contencioso 252, cuaderno 61, 12. The same allegation was also
reproduced in AGN/L, SG, varios 4, cuaderno 122. The original reads: no se necesita
para saber que es francs ms ejecutoria que la rma que pone en el escrito de dicha
hoja . . . porque es letra tan extranjera, como es su habla, de modo que en habla y letra
tiene dos irrefragables testigos de su extranjera.
86. AGN/L, RTC, contencioso 252, cuaderno 76, 1416, on p. 14. The original reads:
es notoria su extranjera en primer lugar . . . no porque no habla el castellano, sino
porque no lo habla seguido, tropieza en las palabras sin que esto venga de defecto en las
articulaciones y le falta aquella extensin de trminos que es propia de quien los ha
246 Notes to Pages 11416

adquirido despus de la edad mayor. Similar claims were made against Francisco Vasalo
in the same cuaderno, 3841 on p. 42. Another example is the case of Juan Bautista
Placert, narrated in AGI, Quito 126, 22425. Juan was suspected of foreignness because
of his surname. But following legal procedures, he was declared native. In 1722, Andrian
Pedro Barnes was classied as a foreigner because of his surname. It was later made clear
that he was the son of foreigners born in Spain and thus, a true Spaniard: his case,
discussed on August 1722, in AGI, IG 1538. The case of Guillermo Bquer was similar:
decision of March 5, 1624, in AGI, contratacin 50B.
87. The problems inherent in using cultural traits as proofs for membership was openly
discussed in the allegations of the merchant guild of January 21, 1762: AGN/L, SG,
varios 3, cuaderno 107. See also AGN/L, RTC, contencioso 252, cuaderno 61, 51, and
AGN/L, SG, varios 4, cuaderno 122, especially the opinion of the scal dated December
10, 1761. This was also the conclusion of the Cdiz merchant guild according to Acu-
erdo del comercio de Cdiz, August 21, 1721, in AGI, consulados 892A, 10.
88. AGN/L, SG, varios 3, cuaderno 107.
89. Town council meetings of January 3, and June 27, 1795, and meeting of January
12, 1796, in Acuerdos del extinguido cabildo de Buenos Aires, ser. 3, vol. 10, libros 49
54, 465 and 515 and vol. 11, libros 5457, 16, respectively.
90. Letter of the interim viceroy of Peru to the king, dated August 11, 1681, in AGI,
Lima 81, cuaderno 4, no. 20. The original reads: la averiguacin de esta materia es muy
dicultosa, pues en las Indias pocos o ningunos solicitan mantenerse en ellas confesando
ser franceses, ingleses, holandeses ni de otra nacin, sino la de castellanos, andaluces,
navarros y vizcanos, usando la cautela de mudarse el nombre por si llegase el caso de la
pesquisa de averiguarles la patria. The complaint of Limas merchant guild on December
16, 1761 was similar, according to the information it supplied the viceroy in AGN/L,
RTC, SG, varios 4, cuaderno 122. An additional copy of this information is inserted in
AGN/L, RTC, contencioso 252, cuaderno 65, 1020.
91. AGN/L, RTC, contencioso 252, cuaderno 77, 19. The original reads: porque yo
soy espaol, siendo nativo de la ciudad de Valencia.
92. Other authorities, under different circumstances, were nevertheless willing to ac-
cept licences of passage as proofs. For example, in 1678 Buenos Aires, the city council
refused to proceed against several Greek merchants because the licences they carried
certied that they were Spaniards: Acuerdos del extinguido cabildo de Buenos Aires, vol.
15, libro 10, 21617.
93. Public fame and public knowledge were categories of proof: Lvy, La hir-
archie des preuves; Ghisalberti, La teoria; and Herzog, La administracin, 25578.
94. AGN/BA, 93973.
95. The case of Joseph Labordiva in AGN/L, RTC, contencioso 252, cuadernos 61, 3
and 77, and cuaderno 65, 15.
96. Carta ejecutoria of March 20, 1723, in AGI, consulados, libro 446, and AGI,
consulados, libro 445, unattached document.
97. AGN/L, RTC, contencioso 252, cuaderno 76, 3236. The original reads: lo que se
trata en este proceso es distinguir el extranjero del natural, lo que no puede hacerse sin
prueba y no porque el tribunal cometa algn error de lista en que se incluyen muchos que
no son extranjeros se puede resolver sobre sola su consulta.
Notes to Pages 11923 247

Chapter 6. The Other

1. Garca Crcel, Las fronteras.

2. Portillo Valds, Los lmites and in La nazione cattolica, 128, and Fernndez
Albaladejo, Catlicos, 10327.
3. Koenigsberger, National and in Spain, 14472; Payne, Spanish Catholicism,
370; Continisio and Mozzarelli, Repubblica e virt; and Fernndez Albaladejo, El
4. Fernndez Albaladejo, Rey.
5. Recent studies indicate that the traditional reading of late medieval developments
was greatly inuenced by early modern and modern perceptions. The reconquest of
Spain, we are now told, involved many foreigners and was not necessarily an exclusively
Spanish affair: Ruano Eloy, La participacin. Many of its heros, such as the legendary
El Cid, frequently crossed religious boundaries and alternatively fought on Christian and
Muslim side: Fletcher, Quest for el Cid. Among settlers of territories liberated from
Muslim control were many non-Christians: Clemente Ramos, La sociedad. These issues
are also treated in Linehan, Religion.
6. Mariana, Del rey, 57071. The original reads: Es pues la religin un vnculo de la
sociedad humana, y por ella quedan sancionadas y santicadas las alianzas, los contratos
y hasta la misma sociedad que constituyen.
7. Armas Asin, Herejes.
8. Indice de los dos tomos de comercio de extranjeros en Espaa, in AHN, estado
647/16, captulo 33, and the rejection of Protestants in 1803 Buenos Aires, as expressed
in AGN/BA 93536. See also Castelnau, Les trangers, 14362, and Alberti and
Chapman, English.
9. Noticias de las diligencias hechas entre el consulado y los hijos de extranjeros en
grave dependencia que se subscit en el ao 1719 y se feneci en el de 1728, in AGI,
consulados 892A, 6. The same argument was repeated in 1785 when it was clearly stated
that nativeness could not be granted to sons of Moors, atheists, or gentiles: Dictmen de
Juan Antonio Enrique dated San Sebastin October 10, 1785, in BPR, II 12.866, no. 4,
39R46V, on fols. 41V42R.
10. Siete Partidas, law 2, title 24, partida 4.
11. Opinion of the scales in the consulta of February 26, 1774, in AHN, estado 5042,
12. The cmara of Castile on July 24, 1782, in AGS, GJ 873.
13. Letter of November 28, 1803, in AGN/BA 93536. The original reads: se
reconcili con la iglesia para vivir entre nosotros . . . y que si ahora vuelve a su tierra se
concidera aborrecido.
14. Novsima Recopilacin, law 2, title 11, book 6; cdulas of April 16, 1701, and July
6, 1701, in ACV, SA-Ced/Prag. C.915 and C.946; and cdula of March 18, 1734,
quoted by Joseph Valloise in AGN/L, RTC, contencioso 252, cuaderno 61, 58; and the
cases of Arturo Francisco Poner and Juan Flores mentioned in AGN/L, SG, varios 4,
cuaderno 122.
15. Cmara of Castile on February 14, 1761, in AGS, GJ 873. Similar arguments were
considered by the Council of Castile on March 2, 1762, according to the Real decreto . . .
248 Notes to Pages 12326

privilegios que gozen en Espaa los naturales irlandeses, dated May 4, 1792, in AGI,
consulados 53.
16. AN/Q, gobierno 21, expediente 19.11.1763. The original reads: una vez he log-
rado el hallarme distante del riesgo de que hu, y he conseguido el seguro de la tran-
qulidad en mi cristiana profesin, gozando de este benecio el espacio de 10 aos a que
moro entre espaoles y sus tierras, prentendo y protesto jurar domicilio y vecindad en el
lugar que ms cmodo me fuese de este provincia and a ms de lo que dec lleva la
religin y el derecho natural y el amparo y proteccin que de ms de catlico de un sujeto,
que desde sus tiernos aos huyendo de que lo infestasen las diversas sectas de hereja, ha
que se hallaba expuesto en un reino y nacin protestante.
17. The cases of Juan Valois, Diego Poner, and Arturo Alejandro, who defended their
right to remain in Peru in 1761: AGN/L, RTC, contencioso 252, cuadernos 64 and 77,
and AGN/L, SG, varios 4.
18. The opinion of the scal of Quito, dated March 1, 1763, in AN/Q, gobierno 21,
expediente 19.11.1763. The same position was also adopted by Antunes y Acevedo,
Memorias histricas, 29395.
19. This became the common practice: AGI, consulados, libro 445, 24446 and 262
20. The Spanish version identied the Chueta as de estirpe hebraica. Eighteenth-
century Chuetas are studied in Paz, Reclamaciones; Moore, Those of the Street, 153
54; Corts Corts, Historia de los judos mallorquines, vol. 2, 33347; Selke, Conversos
of Majorca; Isaac, Els jueus de Majorca, 5859; Gonzlez Esquerdo, Orgines; and
Poqueres i Gen, Lourde alliance, 24451. Their petition dated February 12, 1773, as
well as the proceedings that followed it, are found in AGS, GJ 1021. Many of these
documents were published by Prez Martnez, Revindicacin de los judos mallorquines.
Their contents are also summarized in Riera, Carlos III y los Chuetas mallorquines.
21. Petition of the Chuetas of February 12, 1773, in AGS, GJ 1021. The original reads:
todos los hijos de Adn descienden de judos o gentiles and Cul era la causa para la
exclusin . . . que si por a caso era el que viniesen los suplicantes de un orgen que tal vez
es comn a toda la nacin y sin duda a la mayor parte.
22. The report of the audiencia dated May 4, 1774, in AGS, GJ 1021.
23. The original reads: denigran en general a la nacin espaola, con uno de los
mayores demuestros que conocan las leyes, armando en su memorial que el orgen de
que ellos venan era tal vez comn a toda la nacin y sin duda a la mayor parte? Qu se
poda prometer de los que tenan la loca osada de suplicar a su rey que los sacase de su
bajesa y los enlasase a todos los honores reputndole precisado a ello, cuando ni los
vasallos del ms alto carcter hablan en este tono a su soberano?
24. The original reads: humillados . . . los individuos de la calle aspiraran siempre a
ser conservados en la patria en que nacieron, por medio de una conducta justicada,
porque a tales gentes solo les contena el temor de perder sus intereses y conveniencias y
no el amor al prncipe que les defenda ni al estado con cuya substancia vivan, ni tenan
por honor otro objeto que su inters.
25. Opinion of July 2, 1774, in AGS, GJ 1021. Pedro Rodrguez Campomanes (1723
1803) was a well-known gure in Spanish enlightened circles and was personally respon-
Notes to Pages 12629 249

sible for many eighteenth-century reforms: Rodrguez Daz, Reforma e ilustracin; Llom-
bart, Campomanes; and Vallejo Garca-Hevia, Campomanes, 14352.
26. Opinion of March 1, 1775, in AGS, GJ 1021.
27. Consulta of November 15, 1778, in AGS, GJ 1021.
28. The original reads: encender un violento fuego de emulacin y odio inexinguible
porque en la aprehensin de la gente popular se interpreta como una mancha de honor.
29. Opinion of October 1, 1782, in AGS, GJ 1021. The status of Minorca during that
period is described in Pia Homs, La reincorporacin de Menorca and the cdula of
March 11, 1799, in AN/Q, gobierno 51, expediente 21.10.1799.
30. The discrimination of converso in late medieval and early modern Spain was the
subject of innumerable studies. For my purpose, I found the following most useful:
Sicroff, Les controverses des status de puret de sang; Domnguez Ortiz, Los judeocon-
versos; Riandiere la Roche, Du Discours; Contreras, Limpieza; Molas Ribalta, El
exclusivismo; Gutirrez Nieto, El reformismo; Kamen, El mbito and in his Lim-
pieza; Cuart Moner, Colegiales mayores y limpieza de sangre; Hernndez Franco, Cul-
tura y limpieza de sangre, 1121 and 17578; and Netanyahu, Origins of the Inquisi-
tion, 351661 and 10034.
31. Dedieu, Hrsie.
32. These orders were mentioned in a cdula of November 11, 1692, in ACV, SA-
Ced/Prag. C.866. The literature on anti-Gypsies legislation in Spain is abundant. Some
of the most important titles are: Snchez Ortega, Documentacin sobre la situacin and
Los gitanos espaoles; Leblon, Les gitans dans la pninsule, in Les gitans dEspagne,
and in Les gitans: Une socit ferme?; and Peael Ramn, Gitanos. Anti-Gypsies
perceptions were also mentioned by Herrero Garca, Ideas de los espaoles, 64155, and
Garca Martnez, Otra.
33. Pragmtica of June 12, 1695, in ACV, SA-Ced/Prag. C.888.
34. Pragmticas of January 14, 1717; October 1, 1726; October 30, 1745; July 19,
1746; October 28, 1749; and February 28, 1784, citing that of September 19, 1783, in
ACV, SA-Ced/Prag. C.1088; C.10139; C.128; C.1218; and C.1253, and in AGS,
GJ 1004, respectively. The contents of many of these pragmticas are enumerated in the
Novsima Recopilacin, title 16, book 12. AGS, GJ 1005 and 1006 include additional
information about the prosecution of Gypsies. See also Alvarez Valds y Valds, La
extranjera, 49196.
35. According to the legislation, a Gypsy family could include three generations, as
long as the younger ones were unmarried.
36. Recopilacin de Indias, law 20, title 26, book 9 and law 5, title 4, book 7. Law 5
states that Gypsies could easily trick the Indians because of their natural simplicity, and
that because of the great distances in Spanish America, they would be virtually uncontrol-
lable. The original reads: entre los indios a los cuales engaan facilmente por su natural
simplicidad . . . y conviene que, en las Indias, por las grandes distancias que hay de unos
pueblos a otros y teniendo mejor ocasin de encubrir y disimular sus hurtos, apliquemos
el medio ms ecaz para librarlas de tan perniciosa comunicacin y gente mal inclinada.
37. Veitia Linaje, Norte de la contratacin, 300.
38. These considerations were still present in the eighteenth century: Gmez Alfaro,
La polmica.
250 Notes to Pages 12933

39. Petition of the cortes of Castile in 1619, reproduced in the cdula of November 11,
1692, in ACV, SA-Ced/Prag. C.866.
40. Cdula of November 11, 1692, in ACV, SA-Ced/Prag. C.866. Gmez Alfaro, La
gran redada, 13, also reproduces a 1677 opinion according to which there were once
legitimate Gypsies in Spain, but none of them had survived to the present.
41. Sancho de Moncada (1619), as cited by Borrow, Zincali, 98106. Other contem-
porary opinions are cited by Leblon, Les gitans dEspagne, 22627 and 22931.
42. Chapter 1 of the pragmtica of September 19, 1783, cited in the pragmtica of
February 28, 1784, in AGS, GJ 1004. The original reads: declaro que los que llaman y se
dicen gitanos no lo son por orgen ni por naturaleza ni provienen de raz infecta alguna.
43. Pragmtica of July 19, 1746, in ACV, SA-Ced/Prag. C.1218. The original reads:
pues habiendo nacido tales [vasallos] y debiendo ser comprehendidos en todos los
tributos y cargas reales y personales, no es justo parezcan otra cosa.
44. Martnez Martnez, La minora gitana, 4748 and 5462.
45. Some of these questions are treated in the reports of the audiencias of Aragon,
Valencia, Catalonia, and Granada dated 1783 and cited by Snchez Ortega, Documenta-
cin sobre la situacin, 188218.
46. Petition of December 16, 1745, cited by the royal delegate and council of Jerez de la
Frontera and inserted in the pragmtica of July 19, 1746, in ACV, SA-Ced/Prag. C.12
47. Martnez Martnez, La minora gitana, 11921.
48. Petition of Baltazar Vargas, dated May 1797 in AVM, secretara 234862.
49. The original reads: modelo del buen ciudadano y leal vasallo.
50. This petition and many others were included in the discussions that preceded the
issuing of the pragmtica of July 19, 1746, in ACV, SA-Ced/Prag. C.1218. These types
of petitions were not new. They were already voiced as early as the 1590s according to
ACV, PC-PA(F) 5614. Apparently, Seville also reacted against the strict implementation
of anti-Gypsy measures in 1749: Guichot, Historia de la ciudad de Sevilla, vol. 4, 378
51. A similar decision was included in a decree dated October 28, 1749, in ACV, SA-
Ced/Prag. C.1253, that determined that anti-Gypsy measures should have never been
applied to good Gypsies. On that occasion, good Gypsies were classied as those
with a xed domicile who were well behaved or Gypsies already holding royal decrees
classifying them as Castilians.
52. The faith of the Gypsies was thus similar to that of other itinerant people: Geremek,
Truands et misrables, 69110, and Prez Esteve, El problema de los vagos.
53. Snchez Ortega, Los gitanos espaoles, 15960 and 16365.
54. Undated petition by Manuel Blas Ortz, cited in Snchez Ortega, Documentacin
sobre la situacin, 24850. The original reads: [their petition to include them in the]
fueros, excepciones y privilegios de naturales de estos reinos [and to recognize that] el
nombre que les haba querido dar de gitanos haba sido por el pretexto, no porque en la
realidad lo fuesen, pues no eran extranjeros and the 1718 decree that agreed that they
were originarios de nuestros reinos y no de nacin de gitanos.
55. Petition of Cayetano Diez Montoya and his wife in 1739, cited in Saborit Banderas,
Gitanos, 31012.
Notes to Pages 13335 251

56. Vaux de Foletier, La rae, 67. Similar considerations also guided the authorities
of Seville in 174546 according to Prez de Guzmn, Los gitanos, 75.
57. This expression was used, for example, in the pragmtica of June 12, 1695, in ACV,
SA-Ced/Prag. C.888. Gypsy foreignness was also mentioned by Vassberg, Village,
58. Obliged to proceed despite their protest, the judges came up with ve names. Two
of them were elderly and sick, and the other three were classied as useful members of the
local community: AGN/BA 919210, and Acuerdos del extinguido cabildo de Buenos
Aires, ser. 3, vol. 5, libros 3660, 7071 and 42425.
59. Martnez y Martnez, La minora gitana, 1024. The original reads: con traje
desaliado, poca limpieza en el vestido, moreno color y dichas seales les daban de
60. Gmez Alfaro, La gran redada, 48 and 5455; and Martnez y Martnez, La
minora gitana, 1068 and 11929.
61. This distinction is clear in the Siete Partidas, which dedicates different titles (titles
24 and 25, partida 4) to vassalage and nativeness. See also Fuero Viejo, book 1, title 3,
law 1, and Celso, Las leyes, 243 (R and V) and 353 (R).
62. Siete Partidas, law 2, title 24, partida 4.
63. Maravall, Del rgimen, 12026, and Prez Prendes Muoz Arraco, Los crite-
rios, 104153, and La obsesin.
64. Lalinde Abada, Linserimento, 5253. Early modern Spanish legislation and
legal and political practice continued to refer to people as vassals, rather than as
subjects of the king.
65. Naturalization letter of November 5, 1740, in AGI, IG 1536. The original reads:
naci en ella [Miln] . . . cuando estaba en mi legtimo dominio, siendo su padre . . . uno
de mis ms eles vasallos y natural de ella. Luego que se apoderaron de aquel estado las
armas de Alemania (1707) por no querer reconocer ni tener otro soberano que a m, dej
su patria y adandonndola se vino a Espaa, avecindado en Cdiz, trayendo su familia y
al suplicante muy nio con l.
66. Naturalization letter of March 31, 1708, in AVM, secretara 234526. The origi-
nal reads: a lo que ha padecido por el vasallo de Su Majestad habiendo salido dester-
rado de aquella ciudad por el principe Eugenio . . . sacricando su persona, bienes y
hacienda al furor de los enemigos.
67. The case of Pedro de la Mesta (s/f) in AN/Q, gobierno 12, expediente 25.6.1731.
The original reads: con el ardor de el vasallo, porque en mi primera edad, serva vuestra
real persona con toda la delidad necesaria, con las tropas, en los reinos de Espaa, en las
campaas de los aos de 6, 7, y 8 de este siglo, en los sitios de Barcelona, Lrida,
Cartagena de Levante y en otras funciones de guerra a que en el transcurso de dichas
campaas se ofrecieron, arriesgando sangre y vida en defensa de vuestros derechos y de
vuestras banderas reales.
68. AN/Q, FE 34, vol. 94, no. 3643, 10231, expediente 13.10.1775. An identical
claim was made by Francisco Lafaria y Madrigal in 1720 according to the consulta of
the cmara of Castile, dated December 11, 1720, in AGS, GJ 873.
69. Petition of Juan and Joseph Benavides, of April 6, 1740, in AGI, IG 1536. The
original reads: que se reputa por agregado a la corona de Aragn.
252 Notes to Page 135

70. Petition of Luis Melloni, cited by the cmara on August 27, 1777, in AGS, GJ 873.
The original reads: le favoreca tambin y persuada una especie de equidad y memoria
antigua a que no se entendiera con los sardos tan rigorosamente como con otros extran-
jeros la disposicin de la ley 14, ttulo 3, libro 1 de la recopilacin.
71. Splica hecha a S.M. por los amencos establecidos en Sevilla que se les recon-
ociera tener los mismos derechos que los espaoles in AGI, EC 1057A, 428R431R on
fols. 428V429R and discussed by the Council of the Indies in 1722 and 1723. An
additional copy of the same splica can be found in BNE MSS 18.64962. The original
reads: Los amencos han sido de algunos siglos a esta parte vasallos de esta corona,
lograron siempre la primera estimacin entre cualesquiera sbditos por el singular ap-
recio que los predecesores de Vuestra Majestad han hecho de su dominio. Queda al
escrutinio de los anales los mritos que tuvieron para desfrenar la violencia de sus prn-
cipes, pero no pueden omitir la representacin que hacen de los muchos servicios que
frequentaron en su pas a la corona y de los poco inferiores que han repetido sus indi-
viduos en Castilla. En el feliz reinado de vuestra majestad se ha visto con ms claridad su
celo y su servicio, asi en las contribuciones que han ejecutado, como en el dictmen con
que resolvieron abandonar su patria y sus intereses. . . . Tan conforme y tan genial ha sido
su trato con los espaoles siempre, que jams han odo en este pas el nombre de extran-
jeros y los espaoles han vivido siempre en Flandres como naturales. The same question
was also studied in Explicacin de la ltima determinacin del rey y superior consejo de
las Indias en el pleito entre el comercio de Espaa y los hijos de extranjeros nacidos en
estos dominios in AGI, consulados 892A, 1 and 7 and in the opinion of the representa-
tive of royal interests ( scal ) in the Council of the Indies dated March 6, 1723, in AGI,
EC 1057A, pieza 5, 416R7V.
72. Vietia Linaje, Norte de la contratacin, 32930, and Solrzano Pereira, Poltica
Indiana, book 4, chap. 19, point 37.
73. It was literally asserted que la denominacin solo que usa Su Magestad de ser
seor de aquel reino [Sardinia] no es suciente como se verica en otros varios y habra la
misma razn a favor de los naturales de Miln y Flandres: letter of Manuel de Rod to
Manuel Figueroa, dated September 5, 1777, in AGS, GJ 873. Similar assertions were
made in the cases of Francisco de la Faria and Luis Melloni, debated on July 1721 and
August 27, 1777, respectively, both in AGS, GJ 873 and in the literature, e.g., Alamos de
Barrientos, Discurso poltico, 811.
74. Noticia de las diligencias hechas entre el consulado y los hijos de extranjeros en
grave dependencia que se subscit en el ao 1719 y se feneci en l de 1728 in AGI,
consulados 892A, 17. The original reads: aun cuando los pases de Flandes de que eran
naturales sus padres se conservasen en el dominio de la corona de Espaa y no estuviesen
ocupados por las armas del seor emperador conforme a la ley que queda citada que
previene cual hayan de estimarse naturales de Espaa para el comercio de las Indias, no lo
podran ser los amencos, como ni los napolitanos, milaneses ni dems, para lo que
acord la distincin legal que hay entre los estados, que se unen accesoriamente y los que
aquae principaliter se agregan, pues los primeros perdiendo todos sus fueros, privilegios y
leyes se hacen un cuerpo indiviso e indistinto con el resto de la monarqua en sus orig-
inarios dominios para gozar y padecer sin diferencias los mismos privilegios contribu-
ciones y cargas como que es conexo y consiguiente lo uno a lo otro, y los que aquae
Notes to Pages 13538 253

principaliter se agregan, como que se retiene las excepciones y privilegios que o tenan
antes o se les concedieron al tiempo de admitirlos y que no estn gravados con las
pensiones y cargas que los naturales, no deben gozar de sus privilegios bien, si solo de los
que se les hubieren concedido en fuerza de gracia o pacto al tiempo de su agregacin, los
que sirven de limitacin para que queden excluidos los dems. The same view was also
expressed in Por el scal de su majestad, en defensa de la respuesta que di a las
pretensions introducidas por los hijos nacidos en Espaa de padres extranjeros. AGI, IG
2301, 7R: Y la razn de vasallos, aunque hoy estn debajo de diverso dominio, no les da
privilegios alguno, como no le han tenido y pretendido napolitanos, sicilianos y mila-
neses, porque estos se unieron a la corona de Castilla aquae principaliter y asi, conser-
varon sus fueros y privilegios y los mismo sucedi a los amencos. This point was also
treated by the representative or royal interests on March 6, 1723, in AGI, EC 1057A,
416R417V, and by Dedieu, Los gobernadores, 49395.
75. These terms were mentioned in Puerto Santa Mara: the cases of Guillermo Mac-
Donnel and Wencenlau Helm in AHN, estado 6291/8. See also the draft of a consulta,
based on the decree of November 24, 1763, and a cdula of June 28, 1764, in AHN,
estado 5042, and AHN, estado 6291/2.
76. These terms were used in Orn and San Sebastian according to AHN, estado 629
1/4 and 1/6.
77. The case of Domingo French in AHN, estado 6291/10.
78. Consulta of February 26, 1774, in AHN, estado 5042, 155. Prez Collados, Una ap-
roximacin histrica, 67, and Castro, la legislacin, 24751, express similar opinions.
79. Pedro Vidarte and Juan Atey in 1761 in AGN/L, RTC, contencioso 252, cuaderno
66, and Francisco Aguirre on January 18, 1785, in AGI, IG 1536. According to Pedro:
aunque sta se separ de las otras [merindades] cuando el santo rey don Fernando el
catlico desposey de Navarra la alta a Juan III de Navarra, pero con todos los reyes de
Espaa, nunca han querido perder su derecho a esta merindad, haciendo y ejecutando
actos positivos de dominio para conservarla en l. . . . El rey es dueo de sus dominios y el
mejor autor de los lmites de su corona . . . [y por su decisin] los naturales de Navarra la
Baja no son extranjeros sino espaoles y sujetos a los dominios de Espaa. According to
Francisco: desde que se incorpor el reino de Navarra con los de Castilla, se han conser-
vado en ellos todos los derechos de espaoles a los naturales de la sexta merindad,
llamada comnamente Navarra la Baja que actualmente se halla bajo denominacin de
los reyes de Francia. Other Lower Navarres accepted their classication as foreigners:
e.g., Juan Pablo Carrense and Bernardo Cros, whose cases were discussed on January 21,
1788, and May 5, 1798, both in AGI, IG 1536.
80. Consulta of the cmara dated July 20, 1782, in AGS, GJ 873. The original reads:
virtualmente se contemplan iguales a los naturales de Espaa o comprendidos bajo el
dominio de esta corona, y aun por esto conservan la recepcin en la orden militar de San
Juan bajo el concepto de naturales o caballeros de la lengua de Aragn.
81. Consulta of the cmara of Castile, June 16, 1770, in AGS, GJ 873. Minorca was
ceded to Britain in the Treaty of Utrecht (1713) and was formally incorporated to Spain
only in the Treaty of Versalles (1783). It was briey reoccupied by Britain in 1798: Pia
Homs, La reincorporacin de Menorca, 4547. See also cdula of March 11, 1799, in
AN/Q, gobierno 51, expediente 21.10.1799.
254 Notes to Pages 13843

82. Assadourian, Beato, and Chiaramonte, Historia de Argentina, 159, 16768, 248,
and 28286.
83. The case of Manuel Zipirana de Melo, debated in 1786 in Buenos Aires in AP/LP
731156, esp. 40V42V, 46V47V, and 63R66R. The originals read: Nadie est
obligado a sujetarse a ms de lo que ha convenido y un ciudadano que se constituy a
vivir en sociedad en un estado libre e independiente, puede muy bien mudado sta de
naturaleza y sometindose a dominio extrao, abandonarla y ausentarse de ella . . .
porque se rompieron y cortaron por este medio los lazos de la sociedad y la obligacin
que esto ha con sta. En una palabra: qued entera y naturalmente libre para elegir y
someterse al imperio y dominacin que le plazca and Naturaleza . . . es aquella obliga-
cin de amarse y quererse bien por algn justo motivo. Extranjera por el sentido opuesto
es una precindencia de aquella calidad introducida por derecho de gentes, de que naci la
distincin de dominios, establecimientos de reinos, fundacin de pueblos y separacin de
provincias. De suerte que a no ser esta divisin, todos seramos naturales de todas tierras
y de ninguna extranjeros. La obligacin de amarnos sera una misma en todos y se
conociera la pertenencia de unos a los otros. El hombre, para cuyo servicio, utilidad y
recreo form Dios esta gran mquina del universo, tiene derecho natural de habitar y
vivir en todas y cada cual de sus partes. Toda la tierra es su patria y de toda ella es
originario y natural. Ahora pues, este derecho que puso raya a las naciones y sujeta a cada
cual de ellas dentro de los trminos de su pertenencia, aunque hijo primognito de la
razn, est sujeto a las contigencias del tiempo y puede padecer sus alteraciones, quiero
decir, que la divisin o separacin de dominios que inventaron hoy, puede enmendarse
maana por nueva determinacin de sus autores y como esta circunstancia hace en el
hombre la cualidad de nacional o extranjero, siempre que ellas se muden o se alteren los
dominios se muda tambin la condicin o estado civil del hombre hablando en trminos
jurdicos y el que ayer fue natural puede ser hoy extranjero o viceversa.
84. The cases of Antonio Rivero de los Santos and Manuel Ferreiro de la Cruz in
AGN/BA 93533, expediente 105, and cdula of April 30, 1773, in AGI, IG 1536,
respectively. AGI, IG 1536 contains many other examples.

Chapter 7. The Crisis of an Empire

1. Fontana i Lzaro, La crisis; Hermann, Les rvolutions dans le monde ibrique;
Artola, Los orgenes, vol. 1, 152205; Surez, El proceso; Rodrguez, El experimento de
Cdiz; and Hamnett, La poltica espaola.
2. Quintana, cited in Surez, El proceso, 73. The original reads: Conservar el pre-
cioso depsito de libertad que les haban legado sus mayores, Mis padres me dejaron
como herencia la esclavitud y la miseria, yo dejo a mis descendientes la libertad y la
gloria and Porque no se edica bien sobre la arena y sin leyes fundamentales y con-
stitutivas que deendan el bien ya hecho y contengan el mal que se intenta hacer.
3. Sospedra, La constitucin espaola; Varela Sunzes-Carpegna, La teora del es-
tado; and the collection of articles published in Anuario de historia del derecho espaol
65 (1995).
4. Stoetzer, Scholastic Roots; Halpern Donghi, Reforma y disolucin; Annino, Cas-
tro Leiva, and Guerra, De los imperios; Rodrguez, Independence; Chiaramonte, Ciuda-
Notes to Pages 14346 255

des, provincias, estados; and Guerra, Modernindad e indepenencia and in his most recent
5. Liss, Mexico under Spain; Pagden, Identity Formation; Lavall, Hacia; and
Lynch, Introduction, 3437.
6. Brading, Origins; Guerra, La nation; and Harwich Vallenilla, Construccin.
Criticism of this analysis can be found in Bertrand, Comment, 99101. Creolism won
prominence in the Anglo-speaking world in the 1980s after its inclusion in Benedict
Andersons Imagined Communities, where it was classied as an early example of a
modern national identity. Lomnitz, Nationalism, includes a critique of his use and
understanding of Creolism.
7. Lavall, Las promesas, 25; Lafaye, Quetzalcotl et Guadalupe, 20; Pietschmann,
Los principios, 88; and Pastor, Criollismo, 265.
8. Lavall, Hispanit; Pagden, Old Constitutions; and Alberro, Les espagnols,
11. Recently some historians have afrmed that until the independence Creoles perceived
themselves as Spaniards: Brading, Nationalism; Guerra, Implosion and in his Iden-
tidad, 22124.
9. Minguet, Nationalisme; Lavall, Conception and in his Las promesas, 105
27 and 12941; Clment, La connaissance; and Brading Patriotism, 3033 and
10. See note 1 and 3, above.
11. Guerra, El soberano, 4144 and 4748.
12. Liss, Mexico under Spain, 2526.
13. Tibesar, Alternative, and Lavall, Recherches sur lapparition and in his Las
promesas ambiguas.
14. Lavall, Hispanit, 9699.
15. Burkholder and Chandler, From Impotence. Current research indicates that, de-
spite Creole vindications, Creoles did obtain many ofces and in fact controlled most of
the local church, government, and judicial institutions: Kicza, Social; Brading, Gov-
ernment, 400405; Prez Herrero, Beneciaries; and Morelli, Las reformas.
16. Representacin hecha por los americanos a nuestro rey Carlos III lamentndose
de que no se les mira y distingue como sus mritos piden solo por residir all, an anony-
mous pamphlet dated Madrid May 30, 1774, in BN/L, MSS C4321 and Discurso del
abad Don Ramn Dios . . . sobre la oposicin que los escritores extranjeros ngen y
exageran entre los espaoles europeos y americanos, undated pamphlet in BPR II 2851,
no. 10, 270R296R. Similar issues were raised in British North America: Breen, Ideol-
ogy, 23 and 2630.
17. Representacin hecha por los americanos a nuestro rey Carlos III lamentndose
de que no se les mira y distingue como sus mritos piden solo por residir all, an anony-
mous pamphlet dated Madrid May 30, 1774, in BN/L, MSS C4321. The original reads:
los originarios privilegios de sangre con que pasaron a aquellos reinos sus abuelos and
a n de que asi formasen un solo cuerpo poltico, sin alguna diferencia en el goze de sus
antiguos prerrogativas de Castilla. See also Alonso de Solrzano y Velasco, Discurso
legal e informacin en derecho a favor de los nacidos en los reinos del Per y convenien-
cias para que en l, sin el obice de haber nacido all, pueden obtener plazas de oidor y
dems que les estn prohibidas, (1652) in BPR MSS 2848, 27R57V.
256 Notes to Pages 14649

18. Manzano Manzano, La incorporacin and in his La adquisicin; Konetzke, La

condicin; and Pietschmann, La resistencia.
19. This rule was afrmed on many different instances. It was clear from the treatment
of native Spaniards in Spanish America, but was also clearly stated in legislation, e.g.,
cdula of January 2, 1788, reproduced in Konetzke, Coleccin de documentos, vol. 3/1,
20. Pagden, Identity, 6065.
21. Pedro de Bolvar y de la Redonda, Memorial, informe y discurso legal, histrico y
poltico . . . en favor de los espaoles que en ellas nacen, estudian y sirven (Madrid,
1667), the Lilly Library, Indiana University, Bloomington, 3V, 25R, 32R-V, 45V, 53R and
22. Juan Antonio de Ahumada, Representacin poltico-legal a la majestad del seor
don Felipe V en favor de los empleos polticos, de guerra y ecclesisticos (1725), re-
produced in Documentos selectos el centro de estudios, 87105. Another intervention by
Ahumada, this time afrming the Spanishness of Creoles, is described in Baeza Martin,
La Condena, 461.
23. Letter of November 28, 1796, reproduced in Blanco, Documentos para la historia
de la vida pblica, 26775, on 26970 and 272. Among the quotations are: y cuando ya
se saben [las leyes], impede a los magistrados aquella natural ojedad con que mira el
hombre los intereses ajenos y de un pas en que solo se halla transeunte y a que solo se
condujo por el deseo de adquirir bienes sucientes para concluir su carrera en su propio
pas o en otra parte . . . manifestando su desaplicacin o dicultad en ordenar las cosas y
remediar los males, sin otro motivo que l de no tener necesidad de permanecer aqu y de
que habiendo de dejar la Amrica, importa poco su destruccin. The king has to main-
tain the loyalty of los naturales y vecinos espaoles que por estar casados o tener sus
bienes en ella, procuran vivir en paz y en la religin y subordinacin en que nacieron y
solo solicitan de V. M. los conserve con el honor de sus ascendientes. A similar distinc-
tion, which divided the Franciscans of Mexico into Spaniards, sons of the province
(persons who were born in Spain, yet were ordained in the New World), and Creoles,
was examined by Morales, Ethnic and Social Background, 4575.
24. Teresa de Mier, Memorias, 281, and in his Historia de la Revolucin, 52425 and
462. I would like to thank Gabriela Gmez Crcamo for calling to my attention to these
sources, which she analyzed in a seminar paper titled Fray Servando de Mier: Meaning
and Nuance, presented to the Department of History of the University of Chicago in
1999. A similar afrmation was made with regard to the English in British North Amer-
ica: Wahrman, The English, 1256.
25. Gaceta de Buenos Aires, September 17, 1810, cited in Vogel, New Citizens, 111.
26. Galmorini, La situacin. Although this situation continued in early 1811, as
demonstrated by the town council records of March, April, and May 1811 in Acuerdos
del extinguido cabildo de Buenos Aires, ser. 4, vol. 4, libros 6567, 42731, 43335,
437, 44554, 46064, and 470, at a later date the distinction between natives and
naturalized reemerged, and the council afrmed the exclusive right of those born in the
city to be deputies in the congress.
27. Mariano Beristin de Souza, cited in Brading, Patriotism, 32.
Notes to Pages 14950 257

28. The political use of natural law in colonial and republican Spanish America was
also analyzed by Chiaramonte, Fundamentos.
29. Representacin que hizo la ciudad de Mxico al rey don Carlos III en 1771 sobre
que los criollos deben ser preferidos a los europeos en la distribucin de empleos y
benecios de estos reinos, dated March 2, 1711, and reproduced in Hernndez Dvalos,
Coleccin de documentos para la historia, vol. 1, no. 195, pp. 42755, quotation on pp.
42930. The original reads: Pues obran contra ellos las mismas razones, porque todas
las gentes han defendido siempre el acomodo de los extraos. Lo son en lo natural,
aunque no en lo civil en la America los europeos; y como no alcance la fuerza civil a la
esfera de los efectos naturales, hemos de experimentar estos de los hijos de la antigua
Espaa, por ms que civilmente se entiendan no extraos de la nueva. Entre los efectos
naturales se cuenta con mucha razn el amor que tienen los hombres a aquel suelo, en que
nacieron y el desafecto a todo otro, siendo estos dos motivos los ms solidos principios,
que persuaden la colocacin del natural y resisten la del extrao.
Representacin que hizo la ciudad de Mxico al rey don Carlos III en 1771 sobre que
los criollos deben ser preferidos a los europeos en la distribucin de empleos y benecios
de estos reinos, dated March 2, 1711, and reproduced in Hernndez Dvalos, Coleccin
de documentos para la historia, vol. 1, no. 195, 42755, quotation on p. 430. The
original reads: Estos por ms que no se consideren civilmente extranjeros en Indias, los
cierto es que no recibieron el ser en ellas: que tienen en la antigua Espaa, y no en la
nueva, sus casas, sus padres, sus hermanos y quanto es capaz de arrastrar la inclinacin de
un hombre; que cuando a esta distancia se destierran a servir un empleo, no muden de
naturaleza, ni se hacen insensibles a los impulsos de la con que nacieron y por todo ello es
fuerza, que desde estas regiones no pierdan de vista la atencin a los suyos, y sobre
consultar a socorrerlos (si ya no es a enriquecerlos) se contemplan pasajeros en la Amr-
ica, teniendo por objeto el volverse a la quietud de su patria, y casa acomodadas.
30. Juan Pablo Viscardo y Guzmn, Carta a los espaoles americanos, (1792) re-
produced in Snchez, Fuentes documentales sobre la ideologa, 4159, quotation on pp.
31. Representacin que hizo la ciudad de Mxico al rey don Carlos III en 1771 sobre
que los criollos deben ser preferidos a los europeos en la distribucin de empleos y
benecios de estos reinos, dated March 2, 1711, reproduced in Hernndez Dvalos,
Coleccin de documentos para la historia de la guerra, vol. 1, 42755, quotation on p.
429. A copy of the same document is found in BN/L, MSS C4321. The originals read:
trae su antigedad desde antes de la ley evanglica y el mismo dios la reconoci alta-
mente impresa en los corazones de su pueblo and Es una mxima apoyada por las leyes
de todos los reinos, adoptada por todas las naciones, dictada por sencillos principios, que
forman la razn natural e impresa en los corazones y votos de los hombres. . . . Es un
derecho, que si no podemos graduar de natural primario, es sin duda comn de todas las
gentes y por esto de sacratsima observancia.
32. Brading, Patriotism, 2223 and 2930.
33. Guerra, Identidad y soberana, 225. On February 11, 1812, an article published
in the newspaper El Censor (Buenos Aires) and cited by Ternavasio, Poltica, chap. 1, n.
11, declared that las provincias de la Amrica espaola estn declarads por ley iguales en
258 Notes to Pages 15053

todo con las de Espaa. En virtud de esto se niegan varias de ellas, a reconocer por
soberano a un gobierno constitudo en la pennsula por las provincias espaolas, y sin la
anuencia de las americanas. I would like to thank Marcela Ternavasio for allowing me
to cite her work.
34. Torres, Memorial, 9. The original reads: Tan espaoles somos como los descen-
dientes de Don Pelayo y tan acreedores, por esta razn, a las distincciones, privilegios y
prerrogativas del resto de la nacin.
35. Guridi y Alcocer on January 9, 1811, DDACC, vol. 2, 318. The original reads: Los
americanos como hijos de los europeos, mamamos al nacer el amor a la pennsula y desde
la niez nos llamamos y nos tenemos por hijos de ella. Suenan bien en nuestros odos sus
nombres y hasta los de sus villas y lugares y no solo somos espaoles, sino que nos
gloriamos de serlo.
36. The decree of February 9, 1811, reproduced in Armellada, La causa indgena, 59,
declared the rights of Spanish Americans to hold public ofces in the court and anywhere
else in the monarchy.
37. Annino, Ciudadana, 68, and Carmagnani and Hernndez Chvez, La ciuda-
dana, 37476.
38. Rieu-Millan, Los diputados americanos, 24650; Ramos, Las cortes, 43753;
Fisher, Monarquismo; Guerra, Modernidad e independencia and in his Identidades y
soberana; Estrada Icaza, La lucha; Chiaramonte, Modicaciones and in Ciudades,
provincias, estados, 37173; Annino, Soberanas; Morelli, Territorio and in her El
espacio. The way rivalries between Spanish American jurisdictions propelled both local-
ism and Creolism is described in Liss, Atlantic Empires, 8890, and Lafaye, Quetzal-
cotl, 2224.
39. The original reads: La nacin espaola es la reunin de todos los espaoles de
ambos hemisferios, (art. 1) and los espaoles son: primero, todos los hombres libres
nacidos y avecindados en los dominios de las Espaas y los hijos de estos. Segundo: los
extranjeros que hayan obtenido de las Cortes carta de naturaleza. Tercero: los que sin ella
lleven diez aos de vecindad, ganada segun la ley en cualquier pueblo de la monarqua.
Cuarto: los libertos desde que adquieren la libertad en las Espaas (art. 5).
40. Son ciudadanos aquellos espaoles que por ambas lneas traen su orgen de los
dominios espaoles de ambos hemisferios y estn avecindados en cualquier pueblo de los
mismos dominios; Es tambin ciudadano el extranjero que gozando ya de los derechos
de espaol, obtuviere de las cortes carta espacial de ciudadana; and Son asi mismo
ciudadanos los hijos legtimos de los extranjeros domiciliados en las Espaas, que hab-
iendo nacido en los dominios espaoles, no hayan salido nunca fuera sin licencia del
gobierno, y teniendo veinte y un aos cumplidos, se hayan avecindado en un pueblo de
los mismos dominios, ejerciendo en l alguna profesin, ocio o industria til.
41. Para que el extranjero pueda obtener de las cortes esta carta, deber estar casado
con espaola, y haber trado o jado en las Espaas alguna invencin o industria aprecia-
ble, o adquirido bienes races por los que pague una contribucin directa o estableciendo
en l comercio con un capital propio y considerable a juicio de las mismas cortes o hecho
servicios sealados en bien y defensa de la nacin.
42. Citizenship could also be suspended for physical or moral incapacity, bankruptcy,
Notes to Pages 15355 259

unemployment, employment in domestic service, criminal charges and, from 1830 on-
wards, illiteracy in the case of new citizens: El ejercicio de los mismos derechos [de
ciudadana] se suspende, primero: en virtud de interdiccin judicial por incapacidad fsica
o moral. Segundo: por el estado de deudor quebrado, o de deudor a los caudales pblicos.
Tercero: por el estado de sirviente domstico. Cuarto: por no tener empleo, ocio o modo
de vivir conocido. Quinto; por hallarse procesado criminalmente. Sexto: desde el ao
1830 debern saber leer y escribir los que de nuevo entren en el ejercicio de los derechos
de ciudadano.
43. La calidad de ciudadano espaol se pierde: primero: por adquirir naturaleza en
pas extranjero. Segundo: por admitir empleo de otro gobierno. Tercero: por sentencia en
que se imponga penas aictivas o infamantes si no se obtiene rehabilitacin. Cuarto: por
haber residido cinco aos consecutivos fuera del territorio espaol sin comisin o licencia
del gobierno.
44. This continuity was also noted by historians, e.g., Castro, La revolucin liberal,
45. Gutirrez de la Huerta and Garca Herrero on September 3, 1811, DDACC, vol. 8,
13536; Ura on September 4, 1811, DDACC, vol. 8, 148; and Larrazbal on September
6, 1811, DDACC, vol. 8, 19899. Argelles answered this question arguing that Spanish-
ness and citizenship were two different things and that each promised a different regime
of rights. Explaining the consequences of this distinction, he nevertheless failed to address
the issue of how would these categories be distinguished and why should they be distin-
guished: DDACC, vol. 8, 13637.
46. Gutirrez de la Huerta on September 3, 1811, DDACC, vol. 8, 140, and Fernndez
De Leyva on September 6, 1811, DDACC, vol. 8, 195.
47. Guridi y Alcocer on August 25, 1811, DDACC, vol. 8, 16.
48. Oliveros on September 4, 1811, DDACC, vol. 8, 14647. The original reads: los
hombres no slo reciben el ser por el nacimiento, sino muy principalmente por la educa-
cin. Siempre se conserva inclinacin aun ms decidida hacia aquel pas en el que se han
perfeccionado nuestras potencias y en los hbitos que duran por toda la vida inuyen
particularmente las ideas recibidas en la educacin.
49. Gutirrez de la Huerta on September 3, 1811, DDACC, vol. 8, 13536 and 138
40. Somewhat similar was the intervention of Guridi y Alcocer in the same session.
50. Gutirrez de la Huerta on September 3, 1811, DDACC, vol. 8, 13940. The
original reads: la necesidad de arraigo, que han considerado siempre las leyes como el
fundamento menos equvoco de presumir en el extranjero la intencin de permanecer, la
delidad y adhesin a los intereses nacionales.
51. Feli on September 5, 1811, DDACC, vol. 8, 187. The original reads: Es de
suponer que conservar [el extranjero] siempre por su pas nativo una predileccin que
puede en ocasiones ser opuesta a los intereses de Espaa y que se contrabalancear por el
arraigo o apego que es natural contraiga respecto al suelo espaol en que ha nacido su
52. Terreros and Garca Herrero on August 31, 1811, DDACC, vol. 8, 100101.
53. Aner on August 31, 1811, DDACC, vol. 8, 99. Argelles, responding, argued that
this rule was well known and was not abrogated by the constitution: 99100.
260 Notes to Pages 15556

54. Veladiez, Muoz Torrero, Castillo, and Argelles, on August 31, 1811, DDACC,
vol. 8, 100.
55. Castillo on September 3, 1811, DDACC, vol. 8, 134, and Villafaes answer in the
same session, 13435.
56. King, Colored; Ramos (Prez), Las Cortes; Armellada, La causa indgena;
Prez Guilhou, La opinin pblica; Berruezo, La participacin americana; Rieu-Milln,
Los diputados americanos; Castillo Melndez, Figallo Prez, and Serrera Contreras, Las
Cortes de Cdiz; Blanco Valds, El problema americano; Garca Godoy, Las cortes de
Cdiz y Amrica; and Chust, La cuestin nacional.
57. Session of October 3, 1810, ASSCE, 8 and DDACC, vol. 1, 2627. The relation
between Spain and Spanish America was also discussed on January 9 and 11, 1811,
DDACC, vol. 2, 31630 and 34672. This question was included in the consulta al pas.
The consulta al pas was a round of consultation with royal councils, juntas, authorities,
municipalities, tribunals, universities, ecclesiastics, and other individuals, concerning
some of the most important issues facing Spaniards in the beginning of the nineteenth
century. It was sent on June 1809 to some 150 entities. Of the 68 answers currently
available, about 40 refer to question 8 concerning the (future) status of America. Most of
these answers suggest that the inhabitants of the Americas were native Spaniards, cit-
izens, and members of the same political community: Prez Guilhou, La opinin pblica,
58. Morales Durez on January 11, 1811, DDACC, vol. 1, 370, and Fernndez de
Leyva on January 16, 1811, DDACC, vol. 2, 43234. The Castilianness of Spanish
America was studied by Manzano Manzano, La incorporacin and in his La adquisi-
cin; Pietschmann, La resistencia; Levene, Las Indias; and Pagden, Lords of All the
World, 12636.
59. Answer of Fernando Andrs Benito, relator de crmen in the royal court of Granada
to the consulta al pas, dated November 23, 1809, reproduced in Artola, Los orgenes de
la Espaa, vol. 2, 41634, in 432. The original reads: Su delidad, su entusiasmo, su
religin, su confraternidad, su unin ntima con la metropoli son otros tantos ttulos que
los hacen acreedores a tan justa consideracin. Son ciudadanos de una misma nacin,
llenan todos los deberes de vasallos, contribuyen ecazmente con sus bienes y personas a
conservar la independencia.
60. Quintana on January 11, 1811, DDACC, vol. 1, 361 and 363. The original reads:
nosotros hemos utilizado su suelo y ellos el nuestro. Hemos cambiado nuestros prod-
uctos. Nos han contribudo y obedecido cuanto se les ha mandado. Tenemos all y ellos
aqu una larga serie de ascendencia y descendencia, idioma, inters y religin igual . . .
seor: que son hermanos nuestros, espaoles de 300 aos.
61. Argelles literally said on January 23, 1811, DDACC, vol. 3, 66 that la poblacin
de Espaa europea no ofrece estos inconvenientes, porque toda ella es homognea. No
hay aqu rivalidades, esas diferencias de castas de donde dimana el espritu funesto de
partido. Other delegates such as Guridi y Alcocer resented this implication and argued
that Spain was just as diversied as Spanish America: his opinion on January 25, 1811,
DDACC, vol. 3, 90.
62. Sessions of October 3, 10, 11, and 14, 1810, in ASSCE, 819, quotation on p. 19.
Notes to Pages 15657 261

The resolution voted upon on October 14, 1810, stated: las cortes generales y extraor-
dinarias conrman y sanccionan el inconcluso concepto de que los dominios espaoles en
ambos hemisferios forman una misma y sola monarqua, una misma y sola nacin y una
sola familia y que por lo mismo los naturales que sean originarios de dichos dominios
europeos y ultramarinos, son iguales en derechos a los de esta pennsula.
63. This consideration was openly mentioned, e.g., by Argelles on January 9, 1811,
DDACC, vol. 2, 323. According to El Observador, a local paper covering the sessions,
it produced highly theatrical scenes. In one of them, an American delegate (Mexia)
kneeled and implored for his miserable compatriots. Answering him, a peninsular dele-
gate (Muoz Torrero) resented this theatrality and complained that Americans simply
wanted to achieve a majority in the parliament: Castro y Rossi, Cortes de Cdiz, 17879.
64. Guridi y Alcocer on January 9, 1811, DDACC, vol. 2, 318. The original reads: los
americanos como hijos de los europeos, mamamos al nacer el amor a la pennsula y desde
la niez nos llamamos y nos tenemos por hijos de ella. Suenan bien en nuestros odos sus
nombres y hasta los de sus villas y lugares y no solo somos espaoles, sino que nos
gloriamos de serlo. . . . [Los americanos] se quejan, no de las leyes, no de la nacin, no de
los monarcas cuyo paternal amor han experimentado. Se quejan de su desgraciada situa-
cin, de que separados de la pennsula en tan grande distancia se forman ideas erradas de
todas las cosas, no se conoce a los sujetos de mrito y aun cuando son conocidos, quedan
postergados por no estar cerca de la fuente. According to Quintana (a peninsular dele-
gate), we give them [Spanish Americans] nothing which isnt already theirs by recogniz-
ing that they are equal to us (nada que no sea suyo les damos con igualarles en todo a
nosotros): his intervention on January 1, 1811, DDACC, vol. 1, 363.
65. Solrzano Pereira, Poltica Indiana, book 2, chap. 1; Llaguno, La personalidad
jurdica; and Garca Gallo, La condicin.
66. Alamos de Barrientos, Discurso poltico, 14.
67. Mrner, La poltica, in La Corona espaola, and Ethnicity; Lutz, Santiago de
Guatemala; and Solrzano Pereira, Poltica Indiana, book 2, chap. 26, point 44; chap.
30, points 1857; and book 4, chap. 20. The permissibility of mixed marriages and the
equal treatment of mestizos, as long as of legitimate birth, were guaranteed by a series of
royal decrees, e.g., those dated October 19, 1514; March 19, 1525; February 27, 1549;
June 1, 1549; and November 1, 1591, reproduced in Konetzke, Coleccin de docu-
mentos, vol. 1, 6163, 77, 256, 259, and 61719.
68. Solrzano Pereira, Poltica Indiana, book 2, chaps. 2829; Bayle, El protector de
indios; Borah, Justice by Insurance; and MacLeod, La situacin. The hope that Indians
would grow was expressed in Solrzano Pereira, Poltica Indiana, book 2, chaps. 25
26, and Mrner, La difusin. This hope was described in the Laws of Burgos (1512
13). Article 4 of the amendment dated July 28, 1513, declared: and whereas it may so
happen that in the course of time, that with their indoctrination and association with
Christians, the Indians will become so apt and ready to become Christians, and so civi-
lized and educated, that they will be capable of governing themselves and leading the kind
of life that the said Christians lead there, we declare and command and say that it is our
will that those Indians who thus become competent to live by themselves and govern
themselves, under the direction and control of our said judges . . . shall be allowed to live
262 Notes to Pages 15759

by themselves and shall be obliged to serve [only] in those things in which our vassals in
Spain are accustomed to serve, so that they may serve and pay the tribute which they [our
vassals] are accustomed to pay to their princes. In this quotation, I used the translation
included in Gibson, Spanish Tradition, 81.
69. Solrzano Pereira, Poltica Indiana, book 2, chap. 29, points 2534.
70. Cdulas of December 19, 1696; March 26, 1697; November 27, 1703; February
21, 1725; and September 11, 1766, in Konetzke, Coleccin de documentos, vol. 3/1, 64
69, 9394, 186, and 33334. See also Muro Orejn, Cedulario Americano, vol. 1, 602
5. The struggle to reafrm Indian eligibility to ofce was studied by Muro Orejn, La
igualdad, 26869 and 36775, and Olaechea Cabayen, Poltica and in his La ciuda-
dana. A similar decision was reached by the Supreme Council of the Inquisition around
the same time: Martnez, Religion. I would like to thank Mara Elena for allowing me
to cite her paper.
71. Feli on January 30, 1811, DDACC, vol. 3, 16368.
72. Guridi y Alcocer on January 25, 1811, DDACC, vol. 3, 92, and Castillo on August
21, 1811, DDACC, vol. 7, 46162.
73. Castillo on August 21, 1811, DDACC, vol. 7, 46162. The original reads: nada
encuentro nuevo en este decreto porque nuestros leyes de Indias los consideran iguales en
todo con los espaoles y les abren la puerta a los empleos y a los honores.
74. Morales Durez on January 11, 1811, DDACC, vol. 2, 37072.
75. Prez de Castro and Feli, both in the session of January 30, 1811, DDACC, vol. 3,
159 and 16162. According to the rst, me hace fuerza que los indios, generalmente
hablando, ignoran el castellano . . . y si eso no pudiera ser un bice, no s que diramos del
pueblo vascongado, que en general, hablando de las clases bajas, no sabe ms que vas-
cuence que ciertamente no es ms inteligible que las lenguas de los indios. According to
the second, y no puedo dejar de decir de paso, que son igualmente si no ms hetero-
gneos un gallego y un andaluz que un espaol y un indio. Guridi y Alcocer also men-
tioned the heterogeneity of peninsular Spain, where there wereaccording to himalso
Gypsies and Africans: His opinion in the session of January 25, 1811, DDACC, vol. 3, 90.
76. Quintana on January 9, 1811, DDACC, vol. 2, 317.
77. Valiente on January 23, 1811, DDACC, vol. 3, 7576.
78. Article 25(2) spoke about el estado de deudor quebrado o de duedor a los caudales
pblicos, article 25(3) mentioned estado de sirviente domstico, and article 25(4)
spoke about those who have no ocio o modo de vivir conocido. From 1830 onwards,
suspension could also come about because of illiteracy: article 25(6).
79. Apparently, despite this rule, at least in some jurisdictions, such as New Spain,
about 91 percent of the population was considered citizens in the immediate aftermaths
of these decrees: Guerra, El Soberano, 45.
80. Valiente on January 23, 1811, DDACC, vol. 3, 7576.
81. The distinction between Spaniards, Indians, and the mixed blood, on one hand,
and people with even partial African descent, on the other, was invoked with regards to
both citizenship and the right for representation. It was declared on October 15, 1810,
and February 7, 1811, and was commonly cited by different delegates, for example,
Morales Durez on January 11 and February 7, 1811, DDACC, vol. 2, 36768, and vol.
3, 281, and Guridi y Alcocer on January 25, 1811, DDACC, vol. 3, 9095. A decree
Notes to Pages 15960 263

dated January 26, 1814, inserted in AM/Q, MMHCQ 001210, vol. 3, 89, stipulated
that participating in the parliament were Spaniards but also los domiciliados y avecin-
dados en aquellos pases [Amrica y Asia] y as mismo los indios y los hijos de espaoles y
as mismo los indios y de los hijos de espaoles e indios.
82. Article 22, which dealt with Spaniards of African descent, stipulated: A los es-
paoles que por cualquiera lnea son habidos y reputados por originarios del Africa les
queda abierta la puerta de la virtud y el merecimiento para ser ciudadano. En su conse-
cuencia, las cortes concedern carta de ciudadano a los que hicieren servicios calicados a
la patria, o a los que se distinguen por su talento, aplicacin y conducta, con la condicin
de que sean hijos de legtimo matrimonio, de padres ingenuos, de que estn casados con
mujer ingenua, y avecindados en los dominios de las Espaas, y de que ejerzan alguna
profesin, ocio o industria til con un capital propio.
83. Parry, Age of Reconnaissance, 317; Bernand, Negros, esclavos y libres, 910 and
5051. Martnez, Space, also claries the different treatment given to individuals of
African descent.
84. Letter of November 28, 1796, reproduced in Blanco, Documentos para la historia
de la vida, vol. 1, 26775. In the citation, I used the translation of Lynch, Latin American
Revolutions, 18187. The originals read: y ha de creerse que la intencin de V. M. es
entregar la conanza y dejar la seguridad de los derechos a unos hombres que lejos de
mirar hacia Espaa como al centro de su felicidad han de jar su vista en los oscuros
habitantes del Africa, de donde proceden para protegerlos y sublevarlos contra los es-
paoles de quienes dicen que han recibido mil agravios? Podrn acaso ser ms eles los
blancos nuevos que los viejos? Por ventura procurarn el bien de Espaa aquellos de
orgen africano que stos de orgen espaol? and Luego los mulatos gozen en esta
provincia de los benecios de la sociedad, sin contribuir un maraved para sus rentas y
fondos, establecimientos pblicos y pos: y si se procura saber de qu depende esto, siendo
ellos dos veces ms que los blancos, se hallar que el orgen es el no uso de las leyes que
arreglan la conducta de los mulatos, previenen los remedios para lo futuro y los hacen
contribuyentes, mandndoles que tributen una moderada pensin a favor del real sco, lo
cual no ha tenido efecto, o porque lo han ignorado los que debieran ejecutarlas, o por el
poco inters que se ha tomado en este punto tan sustancia. The purchase of whiteness
was possible by obtaining a royal decree called gracias al sacar, meaning, literally, thanks
for rescuing me: Santos, El rgimen, and Langue, El indiano.
85. The term foreigner (extranjero and casta extranjera) was used by Morales Du-
rez on February 7, 1811, DDACC, vol. 3, 282; Fernndez de Leyva on September 3,
1811, DDACC, vol. 8, 134; and Guridi y Alcocer on September 4, 1811, DDACC, vol. 8,
86. Aner on September 5, 1811, DDACC, vol. 8, 18184.
87. Morales Durez on February 7, 1811, DDACC, vol. 3, 28182. The original reads:
Su voluntad [del rey] era mantener siempre a esta casta extranjera procedente de varios
puntos de Africa o mahometanos o gentilicios, en prescindencia de las otras clases amer-
icanas sin el menor acceso a los empleos o decoraciones civiles, prohibidos los obispos de
dispensar el impedimento que tenan para todo orden sacro, incapacitada en n para una
naturalizacin legal o el logro de ttulo de ciudadano. En este plan nuestros reyes han
usado aquella facultad de toda nacin para jar a los extranjeros introducidos en su seno
264 Notes to Pages 16062

las restricciones y trabas que entiendan conducentes a su mejor orden y seguridad. These
questions were also discussed by Cisneros on September 6, 1811, DDACC, vol. 8, 200
204 and Calatrava on September 10, 1811, DDACC, vol. 3, 24143.
88. Espiga on January 9, 1811, DDACC, vol. 2, 32728.
80. Borrull on August 31, 1811, DDACC, vol. 8, 1012.
90. Gallego on August 31, 1811, DDACC, vol. 8, 102.
91. Guridi y Alcocer on September 4, 1811, DDACC, vol. 8, 150, and Ostolarza on
September 10, 1811, DDACC, vol. 8, 23940.
92. Espiga on September 7, 1811, DDACC, vol. 8, 21920. The Gypsies were also
invoked by Seor el Inca during the same debate, 222, and by Fernndez de Leyva on the
previous day, DDACC, vol. 8, 195.
93. Ura and Fernndez de Leyva on September 4 and 6, 1811, respectively, DDACC,
vol. 8, 14850 and 19596. Guridi y Alcocer on January 25, 1811, DDACC, vol. 3, 91,
was willing to distinguish between Africans who were worthy of citizenship and those
who were not.
94. Castillo on October 9, 1811, DSCGE, 1810. The original reads: porque Espaa,
como otros pases del mundo, ha padecido sus revoluciones y se ha mezclado con na-
ciones extranjeras. Guridi y Alcocer used a similar argument on September 4, 1811: in
their origin, he said, the English are Saxons and the Spaniards are Goths, and we are all
sons of Noah and Adam: DDACC, vol. 8, 151. The original reads: Si hubiramos de
atender a ste y remontarnos en su inquisicin, a los ingleses los llamaramos saxones, a
los espaoles diramos godos . . . y a todos los hombres los tendramos por naturales de la
patria de Noa sino es que tambin subamos hasta Adn.
95. Guridi y Alcocer and Castillo on September 4 and 10, 1811, DDACC, vol. 8, 152
53 and 23839.
96. Guridi y Alcocer on August 31, 1811, DDACC, vol. 8, 102. The original reads: es
muy justo que ella [la nacin] le d una patria adoptiva en su nacimiento civil, cuando lo
despoj de la natural.
97. Ura and Gordoa, on September 4, 1811, DDACC, vol. 8, 148 and 15960; Feli
on September 5, 1811, DDAACC, vol. 8, 187; and Terreros on September 5, 1811,
DDACC, vol. 8, 179. Other delegates, on the contrary, thought that foreigners had to be
preferred to Africans: whereas Africans were totally different than Spaniards, European
foreigners were of the same education, customs, and religion as Spaniards and could
easily integrate into Spain: Aner on September 5, 1811, DDACC, vol. 8, 184, and Creus
on September 10, 1811, DDACC, vol. 8, 233.
98. Castillo on September 4, 1811, DDACC, vol. 8, 162, and Salazar on September 5,
1811, DDACC, vol. 8, 176.
99. These considerations were openly invoked in the session of September 10, 1811,
DDACC, vol. 8, 23146, where some of the delegates, e.g., Ramos Arispe, Mendiola, and
Ostolarza, also expressed their fear of the contrary situation: the practical consequences
of relaying on reputation.
100. Dou on September 5, 1811, DDACC, vol. 8, 173; Espiga and Garca Herrero on
September 7, 1811, DDACC, vol. 8, 21520 and 22325; Creus on September 10, 1811,
DDACC, vol. 8, 23334. Lisperguer also mentioned these prejudices in his intervention
of September 15, 1811, DDACC, vol. 8, 329.
Notes to Pages 16468 265

Chapter 8. Was Spain Exceptional?

1. Rucqoi, Gense, 2531; Varela, La novela de Espaa; and Brinkmann, La

2. Snchez Albornoz, Espaa, un enigma histrico, and Castro, Structure of Spanish
History, 311 and 64257.
3. Ortega y Gasset, Invertebrate Spain, 5887.
4. Hillgarth, Spanish Historiography, 3839.
5. Bennassar, Spanish Character; Kagan, Prescotts, 426 and 43032; and Hill-
garth, Mirror of Spain, 52844.
6. Juderas y Loyot, La leyenda negra; Maltby, Black Legend in England; Ragussis,
Birth; and Garca Crcel, La leyenda negra.
7. Nuix, Reexiones imparciales; Keen, Black Legend and White Legend; Hanke,
Modest; Halizcer, Inquisition; and Gibson, Black Legend.
8. Debates about Spanish exceptionalism were especially important in the aftermaths
of the 1898 war, in which Spain lost Cuba, Puerto Rico, and the Philippines, its last
American colonies: Ramsden, 1898 Movement; Blinkhorn, Spain; and Pan-Montojo,
Ms se perdi en Cuba.
9. Dife, Ideology, and Pike, Hispanismo 18981936.
10. Ringrose, Spain, Europe, and the Spanish Miracle; Fusi and Palafox, Espaa,
18081996; Burdiel Myth; Fusi, Espaa: La evolucin de la identidad nacional; and
Diz, Idea.
11. Opinion of Luis Verdugo, ofcial in charge of citizenship-related matters in the city
council of Madrid, dated February 10, 1702, in AVM, secretara 234823. The origi-
nal reads: conforme a la libertad que conforme a derecho natural tenemos, cada uno
puede renunciar la vecindad que tuviese en un lugar y vivir y avecindarse en otro el que
eligiese . . . y para admitirsele por vecino no necesita de otra circunstancia ms que la
expresin de su voluntad: see chapter 2.
12. Noticias de las diligencias hechas entre el consulado y los hijos de extranjeros en
grave dependencia que se subscit en el ao 1719 y se feneci en el de 1728, in AGI,
consulados 892A. This discussion is studied in length in chapter 5.
13. Fernndez Navarrete, Conservacin de monarquas, 12325. Similar afrmations
are included in Solrzano Pereira, Poltica Indiana, chap. 9, points 5768, 15255; Veitia
Linaje, Norte de la contratacin, 327; and Gutirrez de Rubalcava, Tratado histrico,
7576. See also Razn que puede ofrecer sobre concesiones de naturaleza de estos
reinos, an anonymous pamphlet, probably dated in the 1710s in AGS, GJ 873.
14. Gutirrez de Rubalcava, Tratado histrico, in advertencia and in 121, and An-
tunes y Acevedo, Memorias histricas, 267.
15. Opinion of Joseph de Ledesma (1657), reproduced in AVM, secretara 235014,
16. Jara, Derecho natural, 42. See also Madden, Political Theory.
17. Bellomo, The Common Legal Past, xiixiii; Barrientos Garca, El tratado De
justitia et jure, 11840; and Marn y Mendoza, Historia del derecho natural, 1632 and
18. Hamilton, Political Thought, 52.
266 Notes to Pages 16876

19. Vitoria, Derecho natural y de gentes, 11340, and Hamilton, Political Thought,
20. Costa, Gobierno del ciudadano; Snchez Arvalo, Summa de la poltica; Solrzano
Pereira, Poltica Indiana, book 2, chap. 24, points 110; Alvarez, Instituciones de de-
recho real, 4650; Maravall, La teora espaola del estado; Rommen, La teora del
estado; Brufau Prats, El pensamiento poltico; Noroa, Studies in Spanish Renaissance
Thought; Fernndez Albaladejo, Fragmentos de monarqua, 7684; and Fernndez San-
tamara, La formacin de la sociedad.
21. Herzog, Sobre. The relation between law and justice is also described in Mar-
avall, Del Rgimen, 12021.
22. Herzog, Letrado and in La administracin, 4045.
23. The persistence of these views in eighteenth-century Spain was also mentioned by
Portillo Valds, Revolucin de nacin, 78146. Portillo Valds insists on the importance
of a superior (Catholic) order in Spanish (even enlightened and liberal) thought.
24. Reynolds, Kingdoms and Communities and in Introduction to the History.
25. Berengo, La citt and in LEuropa delle citt; Paufn, Essai sur lorganisation,
9294; Benedict, French, 1920; Viollet, Les communes; Petit-Dutaillis, Les com-
munes franaises; Vermeesch, Essai sur les origines, 79183; and Dini, Citt e corpo-
razioni, 14851.
26. Dietrich, City, 6568; Friedrichs, Early Modern City, 4851 and 14344; Dil-
cher, Brady, Blockmans, Van Niereop, Issacs, and Musi, Urban; Blum, Internal and
in European; Manning, Rural; Follain, Les communauts, 3538; and Clark,
Small Towns.
27. Costa, A propsito, and in Civitas.
28. Bellomo, Common Legal Past; Robinson, Fergus, and Gordon, European Legal
History, 42123; and Lewis and Ibbetson, Roman Law Tradition, 114.
29. Bizzarri, Ricerche; Riesenberg, Citizenship in Western Tradition, 11886; Kirsh-
ner, Civitas and in Between; Canning, Fourteenth; Ullmann, Personality; and
Quaglioni, The Legal. These issues are described in greater length in chapter 2.
30. Capasso, Catalogo ragionato, parte 2, 7584; Ventura, La ambiguit and in
Mercato; and Peytavin, Aduanas.
31. Casini, La cittadinanza; Zannini, Burocrazia e burocrati; Mol and Mueller,
Essere; Mueller, Veneti; Bellavitis, Per cittadini; and Trivellato, Intorno.
32. Guidi, Il governo, vol. 1, 11325.
33. Martelli, Cittadini.
34. Mori, Tot reges.
35. Cerutti, Giustizia.
36. Tedoldi, Servizio, 8489.
37. Belfanti, Mestieri e Forastieri, 2124.
38. Waley, Italian City Republics, 6467.
39. Dilonardo Buccolini, Note.
40. Riesenberg, Citizenship and Law, and the essays included in Rossetti, Dentro
della citt.
41. Quaglioni, Legal.
Notes to Pages 17683 267

42. Bizzarri, Ricerche, 7275; Chittolini, La formazione dello stato and in Cities;
Fasano Guarini, Potere; a