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The Past and Present Society The Military Orders in Sixteenth and Seventeenth Century Spanish Society. The Institutional Embodiment of a Historical Tradition Author(s): L. P. Wright Source: Past & Present, No. 43 (May, 1969), pp. 34-70 Published by: Oxford University Press on behalf of The Past and Present Society Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/650110 Accessed: 18/03/2010 14:05 Your use of the JSTOR archive indicates your acceptance of JSTOR's Terms and Conditions of Use, available at http://www.jstor.org/page/info/about/policies/terms.jsp . JSTOR's Terms and Conditions of Use provides, in part, that unless you have obtained prior permission, you may not download an entire issue of a journal or multiple copies of articles, and you may use content in the JSTOR archive only for your personal, non-commercial use. Please contact the publisher regarding any further use of this work. Publisher contact information may be obtained at http://www.jstor.org/action/showPublisher?publisherCode=oup . Each copy of any part of a JSTOR transmission must contain the same copyright notice that appears on the screen or printed page of such transmission. JSTOR is a not-for-profit service that helps scholars, researchers, and students discover, use, and build upon a wide range of content in a trusted digital archive. We use information technology and tools to increase productivity and facilitate new forms of scholarship. For more information about JSTOR, please contact [email protected] Oxford University Press and The Past and Present Society are collaborating with JSTOR to digitize, preserve and extend access to Past & Present. http://www.jstor.org

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  • 7/28/2019 ordenes militares espaa siglo XVII


    The Past and Present Society

    The Military Orders in Sixteenth and Seventeenth Century Spanish Society. The InstitutionalEmbodiment of a Historical TraditionAuthor(s): L. P. WrightSource: Past & Present, No. 43 (May, 1969), pp. 34-70

    Published by: Oxford University Press on behalf of The Past and Present SocietyStable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/650110

    Accessed: 18/03/2010 14:05

    Your use of the JSTOR archive indicates your acceptance of JSTOR's Terms and Conditions of Use, available at

    http://www.jstor.org/page/info/about/policies/terms.jsp. JSTOR's Terms and Conditions of Use provides, in part, that unless

    you have obtained prior permission, you may not download an entire issue of a journal or multiple copies of articles, and you

    may use content in the JSTOR archive only for your personal, non-commercial use.

    Please contact the publisher regarding any further use of this work. Publisher contact information may be obtained at


    Each copy of any part of a JSTOR transmission must contain the same copyright notice that appears on the screen or printed

    page of such transmission.

    JSTOR is a not-for-profit service that helps scholars, researchers, and students discover, use, and build upon a wide range of

    content in a trusted digital archive. We use information technology and tools to increase productivity and facilitate new forms

    of scholarship. For more information about JSTOR, please contact [email protected]

    Oxford University Press and The Past and Present Society are collaborating with JSTOR to digitize, preserve

    and extend access to Past & Present.


  • 7/28/2019 ordenes militares espaa siglo XVII



    THE SPANISH MILITARY ORDERS OF CALATRAVA, SANTIAGO, ANDAlcantarawere founded in the courseof the twelfth century, after theexample of the Knights Templar, with the task of supporting theChristian kings of the north of Spain in their struggle to wrest thePeninsula from the grasp of the infidel Arab population of the south.They soon acquired a considerable renown, and to their militaryactivities was added an importantsubsidiary role as colonizers of thenew lands they opened up, for as reward for their military successesthey were generally granted estates with jurisdictional rights in theconquered territories. At the sametime the Orders made a strongappeal to popular piety, and theirfusion of the twin ideals of monasti-cism and chivalry offered a powerfulinducement to private alms anddonations as well. By the end of the middle ages, therefore, they hadcome to enjoy vast estates and revenues, and to exercise jurisdictionover large parts of Andalucia and Extremadura. By then, however,they had lost their major reason for existence. The Moors had,since the fall of Seville in I248, been confined to the kingdom ofGranada, and by I492 this too was at last in Christian hands. TheReyesCatolicos,erdinand and Isabella,were quick to appreciatethedangers implicit in such a concentrationof wealth in private hands,and the Orders were one by one brought within royal control as

    * The following abbreviationshave been adopted in the footnotes:(i) Archives and Libraries:AGI. Archivo Generalde las Indias, Seville.AGS. Archivo Generalde Simancas,Valladolid.AHN. Archivo HistoricoNacional, Madrid.BM. British Museum, London, Deparunent of Manuscripts.BN. Biblioteca Nacional,Madrid, Secci6n de Manuscritos.RAH. Real Academiade la Historia, Madrid.(ii) Other abbreviations:Est. Secci6n de Estado.leg. legajo.OM. Seccion de OrdenesMilitares.sig. signatura.I would like to thank ProfessorJ. H. Elliott for the help and advice that he hasgiven me in the preparation f this article.

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    MILITARY ORDERSIN SPANISH SOCIETY 35Ferdinand himself assumed their Masterships. Finally a Bull ofAdrian VI in I523 ratified in perpetuity the incorporation of theOrdersinto the Crown.lSome writerspointed out that the Crowncould not be Masterof anOrder2 much less of three at one time and it was a condition ofthe Bull of Incorporation that knights and religious persons beappointed to attend to the Orders' spiritual affairs. This diEcultywas resolvedbythe foundationof the Councilof the Orders,which wasresponsible for the day-to-day administration.3 The Council func-tioned at first in two chambers,one concerningitself with the Orderof Santiago, the other with those of Calatravaand Alcantara,eachwith its own President. Philip II, in I566, caused the two sectionsto be joined together as a single Council, with a President, eightCouncillors, all of them knights of one or other Order, a Fiscal, aSecretary,and a ContadorMayor, ogether with a number of subord-inate officers.4 Some idea of the extent of the Council's responsi-bilities, and of the amount of property which it controlled, may begauged from the fact that of the twenty-eight corregimientosnto

    1 There is no satisfactoryhistory of the Ordersas a whole either before orafter the incorporation nto the Crown. A good bibliographicalguide to thesixteenth-and seventeenth-centuryiteratureon the Orders s providedby JuanPio Garcia y Perez, "Indicador de varias cronicas religiosasy xnilitaresenEspana",Revistade Archivos,Bibliotecas, Museos, ii, iv, and v (I899-I9OI).The nineteenth- and early twentieth-centuryworks I have consulted appeargenerally o be derivative,repetitiveof each other,and often inaccurate, houghthere is some material of interest in Jose Fernandez Llamazares,HistoriaCompendidae las Cuatro()rdenesMilitaresde Santiago,Calatrava,Alcantaray Montesa (Madrid, I862), Angel Alvarez de Araujo y Cuellar, RecopilacionHistoricade las Cuatro (5rdenesMilitares(Madrid, I866), and a lecture readbefore the Real Academiade la Historiaby FranciscoR. de lthagon, (5rdenesMilitares Madrid, 898). As for modernworks,there areone or two devotedtoindividual Orders, such as D. W. Lomax, La Ordende Santiago: II70-I275(Madrid, 965), and F. Gutton,L'Ordrede Calatrava Paris,I955). The role ofthe Orders as colonizersin the Reconquistas apparentfrom La ReconquistaEspanolayla RepoblacionelPais (Zaragoza, gSI). The Bull of Incorporationitself may be found in Joseph Lopez Agurleta,BullariumEquestrisOrdinisS.Iacobzde Spatha(Madrid,I7I9), pp. 475-8.2 FranciscoRades y Andrada, Cronicade las tres Ordenes CaballeriasdeCalatrava,Santiago,y Alcantara(Toledo, I572), Cronicade Calatrava,f. 83.s The best account I have come acrossof the origins of the Council of theOrdersis contained in a Consultaof the Council to the king, dated 29 Aug.I7I3: RAH., Coleccionde Mateos Murillo, MiscelaneaHistorica, , ff. 3I4-58.See alsoJ. Lopez Agurleta,OrigendelConsejo e las ()rdenesMilitares. AHN.OM., Libros Manuscritos,sig. I286 C.

    4 Aurea JavierreMur and Consuelo G. del Arroyo, Guia de la Seccion deOrdenesMilitares(Madrid,n.d.), pp. II3-4. A list, unfortunately ncompleteof the Presidentsand Councillorsof the Orderswho held officebetweenI523 andI67I, iS to be foundin RAH., Coleccionde Salazary Castro,D 49, ff. I-8. Thesubordinateofficersof the Council are detailedin ibid., I 35, ff. 2g8-8v.

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    -3t PAST AND PRESENT NUMBER 43which Castillewas dividedfor administrative urposes, wenty-twowere withdrawnromthe jurisdiction f the ConsgoReal and placedwhollyunder ts jurisdiction.5 It is an interesting ommenton theattitude of the Crown towardsthe Orders,that while they wereindependentheir secularaffairswere ordered o be heardbefore heroyal judicialtribunals;whereasafter the Incorporation) Il suitsarisingon the landsof the Ordershadto go before he Councilof theOrders lone,and t wasspecificallyorbidden or the royalaudienciasto hear them. The repetitionof this prohibition hroughout hesixteenth nd seventeenth enturies uggests hat t was ittleheeded.sOne reason for this may well have been the delays to which theCouncilof the Orderswas subject, or in addition o these responsi-bilities, he Councilhad also to adjudicate nd advise he king on theproofssubmitted n connectionwith the grantof militaryhabitos, opunish knightsand comendadoresho failed to obey the Statutesofthe Orders, nd o make ecommendationsor all the minor cclesiasti-cal appointments n the Orders,and the offices dependentuponthem.7 It was, in fact, a vast responsibility, nd as AndresMendo,a seventeenth-century pologist of the Orders, remarked,quitecomparablen scopeto that of the Councilof the Indies.8

    A study of the MilitaryOrdersafter their incorporationnto theCrown s one of the most glaringomissions romthe bibliography fsixteenth- and seventeenth-century panish social and economichistory. A prominent panish istorian as ndeedrecently emarkedthat t is incredible ndalmost candaloushat a phenomenon f suchenormoussocial dimensionsshould not ever seriouslyhave beenlooked at.9 Most of the early historiesof the Orders, ike that ofRades y Andrada,l? re no more than chroniclesof the deeds ofsuccessive Masters which end with the royal assumptionof theadministration f the Masterships,while those who attempted ocarry the story beyond the middle ages provide at best a merecatalogue f the militarycampaignsn which knightsof the Orders

    5 BM.) MS. Cotton, Vesp. C VI, f. 7v.6Vicente de la Fuente, Historia Eclesiasticade Espana, v (Madrid, I874),pp. 352-4*7 BN. MS. 5972, f. IOOV: Gabriel Lobo Lasso de la Vega, Relacionmuypuntualde todos os Consejos uperiores . . en la Cortede Espana.8 Andres Mendo, De las (5rdenesMilitares Madrid, I68I), pp. I98-9.9 Antonio Dominguez Ortiz, La SociedadEspanola n el sigloXV1I i (MadridI963), p. I98. Dominguez Ortiz is the only modern writer to have attemptedto discuss the position occupied in Spanish society by the Orders after theincorporation, and this paper draws heavily on his work.10 See note 2 above. Rades wrote what was the first and in many ways themost satisfactory history of the Orders, and all later writers owe a great deal tohim, since he had access to many documents which have now disappeared.

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    MILITARY ORDERSIN SPANISH SOCIETY 37tookpart.ll Sincemenas diverseas GonzaloFernandez e Cordoba,the Gran Capitan, he conquistadoresernanCortes and FranciscoPizarro,Don Juan de Austria, he victor of Lepanto,the admiralAlvarode Bazan, Marques de Santa Cruz, and CharlesV's greatgeneral,Antoniode Leyvawere all investedwith militaryhabitos,l2historiesof this sort tend to be indistinguishablerom historiesofSpain tself. Modernwriters, or their part, have ignored he laterhistoryof the MilitaryOrders ltogether.In a way this neglectof the Orders s not reallysurprising. Withthe fall of Granada nd the completion f the Reconquista,hey hadfulfilled the primarypurpose of their foundation,while the royalannexationeffectively curbed their independent existence. The"history" f the Orders, n the traditional arrativeense,was clearlyat an end. In another ense, however, he Incorporationmarkedabeginning. The Crownmight now no longerbe in need of privateorganizationsor the raisingof armies o fight the Infidel, but theOrderswere able to survive nto a new era as somethingmuch moreimportant: primesourceof income,patronage, nd prestige.Certainly their financial significance was clear enough tocontemporaries.Martinde Azpilcueta, he distinguished conomicwriterand professor t Salamanca, rgued hat through he Master-shipsof the three Orders he king of Spainwas the greatest relate nthe world, after the Pope, so far as ecclesiastical ncome wasconcerned.l3 King Ferdinandhimselfpointedout that the yield ofthe Masterships xceeded he revenuesof the kingdomof Naples.l4Some dea of what hese ncomes n factamountedo at the beginningof the sixteenth entury s givenby the Venetian mbassador, icenzoQuirini. He estimated he valueto the Crownof the Mastership fSantiago t 40,000ducats, hat of Calatravat 3s,ooo ducats,andthatof Alcantara t 36Zooo ducats.l5 These Eguresundoubtedly oserapidlyas the centuryadvanced. A generation ater, in Is33) theItalian humanistwriter, Marineo Siculo, put them respectivelyat

    llA good example of this is Francisco Caro de Torres, Historia de las()rdenesMilitaresde Santiago, Calatrava,y Alcantara Madrid, I629), Book iii,ff. 84-I9I.l2Vicente Vignau and Francisco R. de Uhagon, Indice de Pruebas de losCaballeros ue han vestidoel habitode Santiago desdeel ano I50I hasta la fecha(Madrid, I9OI).13 Martin de Azpilcueta Navarro, Tractado de las Rentas de los Beneficios

    EclesiasticosValladolid, I566), f. 28v.l4Calendar of State Papers, Spanish, ii (London, I866), pp. II8-9: kingFerdinand tO Pedro de Quintana, 2 r May I 5 I3.15 E. Alberi, RelazionidegliAmbasciatoriVenetial Senato, St ser., i (Florence,

    I859), pp. 25-6*

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    38 PAST AND PRESENT NUMBER 4360,000, 40,000,and 4s,ooo ducats.l6 A thirdrelation, f I577, givesthe annualyields as I20,000, 90,000, and 60,ooo ducats,l7a clearindication f the pace of inflation t this time.The landsof the Orders n themselves id muchto compensateorthe loss of Crown ands alienated n the later middle ages. Theyrepresented he most valuableconcentration f landed property nSpain, ituated, s for the mostpart heywere,at the southernimitofthe sheep-migrating reas,some of the best pasturing ands in thecountry,and the very varietyof their sourcesof incomewas a strongattraction. They thereforeconsiituteda perfect security for theloans contracted y the Habsburgmonarchswith Germanbankingfirms. As earlyas I525 the MesasMaestrales,hose andswhichhadonce been the personaldomainsof the GrandMasters,were leasedout to the Fuggers, n whosehands hey remained, xcept or a briefperiod romI533 to I537, whenthe contractwent temporarilyo theWelser amily.l8 As RamonCarande, he historianof CharlesV'sfinances,has remarked,t wouldbe impossible o exaggeratehe far-reaching mplications or the Spanisheconomy of the papal Bullsanctioninghe royalassumption f the Maestrazgos.l9But the lands of the Orderswere not the only sourceof profit ortheir new administrators.If the Crownhad to negotiate oans toenable t to pursue ts imperial olicies, t was n no position o rewardits servantswith direct inancial ifts. Titles of honour,however, rean obvious eatureof any societydependentupon monarchy, nd asa resultof the Incorporationhe disposition f the Orders' ncomiendasand habitos ell into royalhands. This new mine of patronagewasquickly exploited. It is easy to understandthe demand forencomiendas:hey were territorial ordships,the jurisdictionandincomesof which accrued o each comendadornnd while their valuewas diminished y certaindues-notably subsidio,xcusado,anzas,and oftenthe maintenance f a localpriest20 theirobligationswerein the mainslight. Even he annualperiodof residence emanded-

    16Lucio Marineo Siculo, Obrade las CosasMemorabiles e Espana(AlcaladeHenares, I533), ff. 23v-4.7 BM., MS. Cotton, Vesp. C VI, ff. 385-9.18 Details of the variouscontracts or the leasing of the propertyof the Ordersmay be found in Ranlon Carande, Carlos Vy sus Banqueros,i, La HaciendaReal de Castilla (Madrid, I949), chap. 9; Modesto Ulloa, La HaciendaReal deCastilla en el Reinado de Felipe II (Rome, I963), chap. I8; and HermannKellenbenz, Die FuggerscheMaestrazgopachtI525-42) (Tubingen, I967).9 Carande,op. cit., p. 603.20 A list of the encomiendasf the Orderof Santiagowith the dues incumbentupon them in I652 iS to be found in AHN., OM., Libros Manuscritos, sig.I340 C, f5. 346-84. Dues appear to have weighed much less heavily on thelarge encomiendahan on the slnall one.

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    MILITARY ORDERSIN SPANISH SOCIETY 39four months n the case of Santiago,hree in thatof Alcantara, ndonly two in thatof Calatrava2l might withoutgreat difficultybeavoided, or thoseCrown ervantswho couldclaim hattheirpresenceat Courtwasalwaysrequiredwerefrequently bsolvedof even thisduty. 2As against he I80 odd comendadoresf the threeOrders, herewerewell over a thousandcaballerose habito,knightswith no land orincome apartfrom a derisoryreal a day for their upkeep. Whatinducedmen to go to the troubleand expenseof procuring n habitowas clearlynot hope of financial ain, but somethingmore basic othe sixteenth- ndseventeenth-centurypanishmentality. Hidalgufawas that firstessentialqualitywhichformed he basisof all nobility;entry nto the Orderswas, n theoryat least, mpossiblewithout t, forpersonalmeritwas still widelyconsidered he exclusivepreserveofthe blood aristocracy.23 sSidalguiaould be elevatedand refined,however,by the grantof knighthood, likethe enamelwork n goldjewellery,whichdoes not enhancehe valueof thegold, but adorns tand gives it greaterbeauty".24The value of knighthooday in itshistorical radition. From one point of view9as we have seen,MilitaryOrderswerean anachronismnce Spainhadbeen won backfrom the Moors. But from another, they were anything butanachronistic,or they had come,as earlyas the thirteenth entury, oenshrineall thosequalitieswhichone regardsas so characteristicfSpanish ociety n its expansionistGoldenAge: religiouservour, hepursuitof honour, eats of arms n war, support or the ideal of thenationstate, the twin cults of hidalguia nd purityof blood, and soforth.25It is frequently ointedout thatall these conceptsmay be derivedfrom the crusadingraditionof the Reconquista,hich generatedasociety predominantly ristocratic, nd militantly eligious, in its

    21 Andres Mendo, Op. Cit., p. 24I.22 Non-residence was frowned upon, however, by successive GeneralChaptersof the Orders, and penaltiesmight be imposed even upon those whowere absent upon royal service. Cf. Pero Perez, "La Encomienda deCalatrava",Revistadel Centrode EstudiosExtremenos,v (I930), pp. 233-4I23For such views, see Diego de SaavedraFajardo, dea deun PrsncipePoliticoChristiano Antwerp, I677), Empresaxvii. The insistenceof the Ordersuponnobility of blood is to be found in FranciscoRuiz de VergaraAlava, Regla yEstablecimientosuevosde la Orden Cavalleriade el GloriosoApostol Santiago(Madrid,I653), tit. i, cap. i, and similarly n the volumes of statutesof the otherOrders.24 Benito de PenalosaMondragon,Librode las CincoExcelencias el Espanol(Pamplona,I629), f. 89.25 Such is the impression eft particularlyby Lomax,Op. Cit., pp. 88, 2I7, butit is also implicit in all the accountsof the activitiesof the Orders n the [niddleages.

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    4o PAST AND PRESENT NUMBER 43aspirations.26Butwhat s not emphasized nough s the fact thattheMilitaryOrders,survivingas they did right up to the nineteenthcentury, ervedas an extant nstitutionalmbodiment f thathistoricaltraditionon which the sixteenthand seventeenth enturies,at least,modelled hemselves. The assumptionof an habitoof one of theOrderswas by no meansan archaic itual: t was at once a proof offamilynobleza nd limpiezade sangre,and a first majorstep up theladderof the Castiliannoble hierarchy; n identification,n fact, ofoneselfand one'sfamilywith thosearistocraticnd chivalric onceptswhich custom,rather han law, renderedobligatory or the hidalgoclass.

    The role of the MilitaryOrders,quite apart rom their economicimportanceo the Crown,and to the comendadoreshomthe Crownnamed,can thus be seen as one of socialorientation nd definition.GerdnimoMascarenas,n the introductiono the I66I editionof theStatutesof the Orderof Calatrava, uts this point very clearly n hisdescription f the royal Councilof the Orders. "Its function s toconserve he Spanish ristocracy,o keepunsullied he purityof noblefamilies, o give honour o personswho merit it, to distinguish heillustrious rom the commonherd, the noble from the base".27 Inotherwords, t served n principle o definea socialhierarchy asedoncriteriaof birth rather han of wealth; o grantcertificates f nobleascendancy nd of purityof blood. This is a theme o whichwe willhave to recur later when we considerthe social standing of theknights,for it is preciselywhat made grants of habitos o eagerlysoughtafterby the middlenobility,and those who aspired o join itsranks. It is at once apparent,however,that while the MilitaryOrdershad fulfilled he immediate urpose or whichthey had beencreated, hey remained n integralpartof the new age. Thoughnolonger nvolvedcorporatelyn militaryor politicalaffairs, hey werestill a central element in a social system which they themselvesreflected, ndhad indeedhelped o forge.The changedpositionof the Orderswas,perhapsnaturally, low tobe appreciated y contemporaries.At the GeneralChapterof theOrderof Santiago eld in Valladolidn I527, the king was presentedwitha paper"onthe littleuse of the MilitaryOrders"whichsuggestedthat Spain now had no more need of these outmodedbodies ofknights.28 The procuradoresf the Cortesheld in Madrid n ISSI

    26 For example, J. H. Elliott, Imperial Spain I469-I7I6 (London, I963),pp. 20-I.27Difinicionesde la Ordeny Cavalleria de Calatrava, conformeal CapituloGeneral elebrado n Madrid ano 1652 (Madrid, I66I), p. I28.28AGS., PatronatoReal, leg. 22, f. 33: "Parecerque se dio al E;nperadorCarIosV" (I527).

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    MILITARY ORDERSIN SPANISH SOCIETY 4Ireminded he Crown hat althoughhe Ordershadbeen foundedandrichly endowedto fight the Infidel,they were not doing so, andsuggested hat they be entrustedwith the defenceof the Mediter-raneancoastagainst he piratesof north Africa.29 The Cortes ofI576 went even further in attacking he degenerate tate of theMilitaryOrders, ndthis time recommendedhe establishmentn theAfrican oastof conventsof eachOrder, n whicheveryknightwouldbe compelledo live and serveforthe spaceof threeyearsbeforehecouldbe professed. By this meanst waspredictedhat"the SpanishNobility will occupy itself virtuously,honourably,and after aChristianmanner".30The theme was, in fact, takenup againand madeas little mpression at the end of the following enturybyan anonymous rbitrista riter, roubledalikeby the militarydeclineof the Orders nd by Spain'svulnerabilityo a jointattackby MuleyIsmailfromMorocco, n alliancewith Louis XIV, who was himselfalready hreateningSpain from his foothold n Catalonia.3l Themilitary loryof the Orderswasof coursepast beyondrecalleven bythe time of the Incorporation, nd although he annalistGeronimoZurita ells how in the GeneralChapterof Santiagon I509, KingFerdinand pproved suggestionhat the knightsof the Orderpushforward heReconquistanto northAfrica, t need cause ittle surprisethat the planwas neverallowed o materialize.32During the sixteenth and seventeenthcenturies,therefore,theSpanish MilitaryOrdersat first sight amounted o no more thananachronisiic rdersof chivalry;but their apparently igid institu-tional structuresnonethelessaccorded hem a vital and developingsocial role. What the remainder f this paperattempts to do isexamine n rathermore detail he implicationsorthe Ordersof thisdichotomybetweenstructure ndfunction,and in so doing to offersome tentative emarks n the activityof the Ordersnot only withinthe contextof the Castiliannoblehierarchy, ut in that of Spanishsociety as a whole.It is by no means uncommon o trace in institutionsa formalstructurewhich s in no way related o their actual unction. When

    29 Cortesde losantiguosReinosde Leony de Castilla,v (Madrid,I903), p. 543,peticion c.

    30 Actas de las Cortesde Castilla,v (Madrid,I865), pp. 33-5, peticion xv.sl The pamphletis printed with an introductionby David Torra under thetitle Las (5rdenesMilitares y Marruecos(Tetuan, I954).32 Geronimo Zurita, Anales de la Corona d.e Aragon, vi (Zaragoza, I652),f. 208. Suggestionsalong similar ineswere frequentlymadehoweverthrough-out the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries: cf. BM., Add. MS. 28434,ff. 2I-3; BN., MS. 94425 ff. I30-9; AHN., Est., leg. 7r6) Duque de Bejar toMarques de la Paz, 25 Aug. I732.

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    42 PAST AND PRESENT NUMBER 43such a discrepancy ccurson a small scale it may be dismissedasabsurdor merelyquaint;on a largescale it may in the end only beresolved by revolution. The Orders did in fact eventuallyfallvictim o the revolutionarypheavals f the nineteenth entury5 henthe tensions ngendered y this growingdiscrepancy ecame oo great.Throughout he period n question,however, hey could continue obe regardedndulgently s venerable rchaisms.In principle he Ordersstill retained he characterwhich theirnamesuggests: hat of religiousorders ollowinga monastic ule anddevoted o the struggleagainst he Infidel. Theoreticallyhey neverceasedto be just this yet at the same time militaryhabitoswereconferredupon childrenand new-bornbabies,33 s well as on oldercandidates ho petitioned or themallegingmeritsandserviceswhichhad little to do with the religiousends and natureof the Orders.34In practice he smallnucleusof friarsattached o the convents f eachOrder aIone lived under the rigour of monasticdiscipline. Thecommunal bligations f the knightscameto be of little importance,particularlyfterPaul III's Bull of I540 whichpermitted he knightsof CalatravandAlcantarao marry ndto interpret heirsolemnvowof chastity n the sense only of conjugal hastity,a state to which ofcourseall Christianswere n anycasebound.35 Now also the vow ofpovertywas fulfilledby presenting ach year an inventoryof goodsand possessions, under the pretence that the knight was onlyadministeringhem, by permission f the Masterand in his name.By the latter half of the sixteenthcentury his inventory tself hadbecome a mere symbol, a generalstatementwith no detailsof theproperty o which it referred,and its presentation o more than aformality.36Daily recitation of the canonical prayers becamecommutedto a few Paternosters nd presence at Mass, which,together with the obligation o confess and to communicate our

    33 AHN., OM., Consejo de las (trdenes, Archivo Secreto, Series I, leg. 33,ff. 78, 8I, 82, 83, and others.34 Petitions for habitosare to be found in every collection of Spanish statepapers in such numbers as to make it impossible to list them. Petitionerswould generallyput forward he servicesrendered o the Crown by themselvestheir ancestorsand their relatives,and it is rareto find particular easons or therequest for an habitorather han any other pension or title.35 The Bull is printed in I. J. Ortega y Cotes, BullariumOrdinisMilitiae deCalatrava Madrid,I76I), pp. 5I4-7. The knights of Ssntiago needed no suchdispensation for they had always been permitted to contract marriage see

    Lomax, op. cit., pp. 90-3. Before xnarrying, nights of all three Ordershad toobtain eave from the king, apparently o ensurethat the future wife was of pureancestry: BM., MS. Egerton 485, ff. II9V-20.36 BMUMS. Harleian3476, f. 57; Andres Mendo, op. cit., pp. ISI-2; Ruiz deVergara,op. cit., tit. v, cap. iv.

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    MILITARY ORDERSIN SPANISH SOCIETY 43timesa year,amounted o no more thanthe universalay Catholicdevotion.37In the yearof noviciate,afterassuming he habitobutbeforetakingthe vows of profession,a periodof residence n theConventwasexpectedof theknight, n order o introducehim to thereligiousife,and he was obliged oo to servea six-month pell in theroyal galleys,to give him militaryexperience.38But both theseobligations,and particularlyhe galley service,were in practicefrequentlyhe subjectof specialdispensation.39The Statutesof the Orders, eprinted ndexpandedmany imes nthecourseof thesixteenth ndseventeenthenturies,onanued o laystress upon the obligationsincumbent upon the knights andcomendadores.Radesy Andradan factpublished eparately shortaccountof theobligationswhichboundmembers f his ownOrderofCalatrava,40nd many other writersdwelt at length upon them.Impressivehough heselistsof dutiesand responsibilitiesmayseem,one maydoubtwhether,at leastby the mid-sixteenthentury, heywereanythingbut a dead etter. It wasominoushatknightsneededto be reminded o frequentlyof the implications f theirreligiousvows,andit was in fact a frequent ubject ordiscussionwhetherhemembersof the Orderscould now in any sense be consideredasreligiousat all.The Ordersof coursehad theirdefenders. Diego de la Mota,acanonof Ucles(thecapitalof the Orderof Santiagon theprovince fCastille) nsistedon the ecclesiasticalharacter f the ceremonyofassuming he habito. The vows were those of all other religiousorders,and individualdispensationsromthem did not affecttheiressentialnature.4lOntheotherhand,de a Motawasclearlyoncernedata numberof developments. He stressedhatmilitaryhabitoswereto be bestowedneitheras casualgifts, financialrewards,nor as

    37 Ruiz de Vergara,op.cit., tit. vii, caps. andiv; Difiniciones eCalatrava, it.iv, cap. i, and pp. 54I-52; BN., MS. 879: "Kalendariode la maneradel rezarde la Ordende Cavalleriade Aleantara".38 Ruiz de Vergara,op. cit., tit. v, cap. viii; Difiniciones e Calatrava,tit. VII,cap. i.39 A number of exemptions of this sort are to be found in AHN., OM.Consejode las (5rdenes, eg. I58, cajaI. Whenthe GeneralChapterof Santiagoprotestedin I652 at the excessivenumberof dispensations rom galley servicethe Couneilof the Orderspointedoutthat the moneypaid forsuchdispensationsall went for militarypurposes,and wasin factof greaterbenefitthanthe servicethatwastherebyexcused;AHN., OM., Consejode las ()rdenes,ArchivoSecretoSeries I, leg. I0, f. I2, Consultaof Councilof Orders,29 July I652.40 FranciseoRades y Andrada,Catalogode las Obligacionesuelos Comenda-dores,cavalleros, riores,y otrosreligiosos e la Orden . . de Calatravatienenenrazondesu abitoy profesion Toledo, I57I).41Diego de la Mota, Tratado obreunproblemanquese advierte omo eha depretenderl habitode las ()rdenesMilitares Valladolid, 603), ff. 6-7V.

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    44 PAST AND PRESENT NUMBER3secularhonours,but only as fittingprizesfor those whose Christianactionsrendered hem worthy of membershipn the Orders.42 Along section of the work deals with simony. Habitosmight not begiven n return or payment,nor in settlement f servicesperformed,and de la Mota went so far as to consider n additionas simony heassumptionof an habitofor the purpose simply of receivinganencomienda.43The spiritualnatureof militaryknighthoodswas emphasized lsoby the bishop of Guadix,Martinde Ayala, n a pamphletwrittenduring the period of his auendanceat the Council of Trent as amember of the Spanish delegation.44 To counter the prevailingmalaise n the Orders,whichhe diagnosed s a mixtureof ignoranceand negligence, Ayala offered a succinct statementof what thereligiousvows implied for the lives of the knights, n the form ofalternate ists of actions hat were obligatory nd of those that wereforbidden. Some ndicaiionof the intellectualevel at whichhe hadto aim his arguments providedby his justification f the inclusionofa remarkable panish ranslation f the Lord's Prayer:".. . Sincea number, hrough heir ailure o understandhe prayers hey recite,showneitherenthusiasm or devotionwhenthey do pray, t occurredto me that I might render the Lord's Prayer nto our commonCastilian ongue, n view of the numberof times t has to be said".46Rather han endeavour o drawback the Orders o their originalspiritualnorms, other writersaccepted he relaxation f their rulesand tried to create a new raiionale or them. In a work writtenpresumablyo justify he secularizationf the Orders,AndresMendoremarkedhat n his viewthe knights ouldno longerbe considered sreligious; arfrom eading he life of religious rders"thetenorof lifeof the knights s just that of the rest of the laity as regards mbition,occupation,recreation,day-to-dayconcerns,and indeed in everyotherparticular,withoutany differences eing apparent".46A littlebeforethis, Alonso de Penafielhad written n even stronger erms.In his view, for example, t was not simony or habitos o be boughtand sold, nor even for ministers o be bribed n order hat they mightput in a good wordfor a person nterested n obtaining ne.47 The

    42Ibid.,?I343 Ibid., f. g4v.44 Martin de Ayala, Compendio Declaracionde lo queson obligados guardarlos Cavallerosde la Ordende Santiago Milan, I552).45Ibid.,ff. I6V-I7-46 Andres Mendo, op. cit., p. 89. The Castilianversion of is work, fromwhich all quotationsare taken, s in fact a long resume of the author'sLatin text,De OrdinibusMilitaribusDisquisitionesSalamanca, 657).47 Alonso de Penafiel y Araujo, Obligaciones excelencias e las tres ()rdenesMilitares Madrid, I643), cap. xi, ff. 84-8V.

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    MILITARY ORDERSIN SPANISH SOCIETY 45vow of poverty, moreover, was no bar to the acquisition of propertyof all sorts, for without goods and money the knight would be unableto fight or to perform the acts of charityto which he was obliged.48Penafiel's outspokenness is exceptional, but the very fact that thesale of habitosr the freeacquisitionof propertywere discussedat all issufficientindicationthat such things were in practicenot uncommon.The majorityof authors might vainly argue that the Orderswere infact true religious bodies, but the realitywas obviously too apparent.When in I684 the Councilof the Orders askedthat knights shouldnotbe included in a donativewhich fell on the owners of carriages, n viewof their religious status, the couIlcil of Castille put forward a longConsultao refute this pretension,showing that the present way of lifeof the Ordersin no way justifiedtheir being consideredas exempt onthese grounds.49A foreigner might be expected to see such matters in a differentperspective from a Spaniard,and most observersseem to have beenunder no illusion as to the true position. Barthelemy Joly, forexample, was a French Benedictine who travelled in Spain at thebeginning of the seventeenth century. He remarked n his memoirsthat the knightswere reallyno morethan wealthy marriedgentlemen,living comfortablyfrom the revenuesof their encomiendasnd estates,without having to soil their hands with any manualwork. To addcolour to his description, he quoted two current Spanish proverbswhich poked fun at the sort of men who obtainedthe right to bear theinsigniaof the Order upon their tunics: "con a crusen lospechos eldiablo n los hechos"the Cross on their chests and the devil in theirdeeds) and "eldiablonohuyedetodas as cruces"the Devil does notflee from every Cross).5?lshe seigneurs depicted by Joly would in all probabilityhave beenrich before they ever assumed habitos f the Military Orders. Intheorythe knightshad the right to be sustainedfromthe estatesof theOrders, but in fact, as we have seen, the amount set aside for theirsupport remainedfixed, despite inflation, at one reala day-I2,000maravedzsyear. This sum was so inadequatethat it was commonlyreferredto as "the knights' breadand water",and in the end was notpaid at all, the Crown appropriatinghe whole amount for its defenceexpenditure.5l In so far as the Ordersoffered financialrewardsto

    48Ibid.,f.sI.49 AHN., Seccion de ConsejosSuprimidos, eg. 7I85: Consultaof Council of

    Castille, I0 July I684.6?"Voyagede BarthElemy oly en Espagne, I603-4", ed. L. Barrau-Dihigo,RevueHispanique, x (I909), p. 589.61 AGS., Consejoy Juntasde Hacienda, eg. 83I-II40: Consultaof Council ofHacienda,II Oct. I66I see also AntonioDominguezOrtiz,Politicay Haciendade FelipeIV (Madrid, I960), p. 2I3, note 46.

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    46 PAST AND PRESENT NUMBER 43their members, they did so through theirencomiendas,ome of whichwere indeed of considerable worth, though the number was naturallylimited.The yearly incomes of encomiendasluctuated to some extent, butthe following figures, given in an early seventeenth-centuryrelacion,can serve as a general indication:52Order Number of Encomiendas Value (ducats)Santiago 94 308,889Calatrava 5I I35,000Alcantara 38 I I4,248The encomiendasad suffered in both number and value as a conse-quence of the sales and alienations which Charles V and Philip II hadcarried out by papal licence, for the nominal purpose of rasing moneyfor the defence of the Mediterraneanagainst pirates.53 The Orderswere compensated for what they lost by the grantof juros,mostly onthe revenues of the silk industry in Granada. The defence of theAndalucian coast might better have been served by refraining fromcrippling the major ndustry of the region by an insupportableburdenof taxation, and in fact it is doubtful whether any interest was everpaid upon these bonds.54 It would appear that about one fifth of allthe encomiendasf the three Orders had been alienated by I600, andit was no more than a pious hope, therefore, for Philip II to charge hisson with the restitution to the Orders of the properties which hadbeen taken from them.55In the course of the seventeenth century the value of thoseencomien-das hat remained seems to have declined further, whether on accountof the general economic depression, or possibly through the devasta-tion caused by the Portuguese rebellion in parts of Extremadurawhere many encomiendasere situated. At all events a relacion fI7I2 gives the following figures:56

    52 This relacion urvives in a number of copies, each with minor variations:BM., MS. Harleian 3569, ff. I85-204V; BN., MS. 7423, ff. I88-95; RAH.,Coleccionde Salazary Castro,F 8, ff. I-24.53 On the dismembermentof the property of the Orders, see Salvador deMoxo, "Las Desamortizaciones Eclesiasticas del Siglo XVI ", Anuario deHistoria del DerechoEspanol,xxxi (Madrid, I96I), pp. 327-6I; and Carande,op. cit., pp. 4II-7. Lists of properties alienated may be found in AGS.,PatronatoReal, Libros de Copias,Libro I8, ff. 340V-2' and RAH., ColecciondeSalazary Castro,I 23, ff. 97-II2.54 The revenues of the silk industry were already earmarked or the salariesof the Captain General of Granada and his officials. See K. Garrad, TheCausesof the SecondRevoltof the Alpufarras,568-7I (Ph.D. thesis, Cambridge,

    I955), i, p. I78.55 BM., Add. MS. 25686, f. 226.5B BN., Seccion de Libros Raros, R 23,888, no. 6: "Papeles de D. Luis deSalazar sobre las (5rdenes". It should be noted that the Calatrava iguresinclude five tenenciasn addition o the 5 encomiendasf the seventeenthcenturyrelacionanalysedabove; six encomiendasf Santiago,however, do not appear nthe later list.

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    MII,ITARY ORDERSIN SPANISH SOCIETY 47Order Number of Value in Equivalent nEncomiendas maravedisde vellon ducats

    Gross Net Gross NetSantiago 88 585642,624 46,I7I,935 I565380 I23,I25Calatrava 56 39,833,I57 28,I26,97I I06,222 75,005Alcantara 38 26,597,856 20,589,483 705928 54,905Not till much later in the eighteenth century does one again begin tofind figures approachingthose of the early seventeenthcentury.Among the encomiendashere were some which at the best of timesbrought in only comparativelysmall amounts - 500 ducats, or evenless-which could hardly supporta single individualonce the variousobligations to which the encomienda was liable had been met. Inothers, however,the rewards to be had were certainlyinviting. Thefollowing table gives a break-down of the values of individualencomiendass they were in the earlyseventeenth century:57Value in ducats Santiago Calatrava AlcantaraUp to 499 4 2500 - 999 9 4 4I,000 - I,999 32 20 I2

    2,000 - 2,999 I 7 I 2 73,000 - 3,999 7 3 34,ooo - 4,999 I I 3 45,000 - 7,499 6 3 6755?? - 9)999 4 I 2

    I0,000 and over 4 394 SI 38

    The majorityof encomiendasielded between one and three thousandducats, while a few were worth considerably more than this:Socuellamos, in the Order of Santiago was worth I6,250 ducats,Manzanares, in that of Calatrava,I6,000 ducats, Herera, in that ofAlcantara, 7702 ducats.Financial rewards,of course, werenot everything. His biographertells how in I529 Francisco de los Cobos, the royal secretary,was keento exchange his well-endowed encomiendaf Azuaga for the lessvaluable, but far more prestigious encomienda ayorof Leon, "thehighest title a courtier could receive short of a patent of nobility".58Los Cobos was fortunate; for manythe grant of an ecomiendawas ofgreat economic importance, particularly or the younger sons of titledfamilies who could have little hope of any ultimate share in the57 These figuresare taken from the relacioncited above, note 52.68 Hayward Keniston, Franciscode los Cobos Secretary of the EmperorCharlesV (Pittsburgh, 959), pp. I2I-2. Details of the exchangeare in AGS.,Est. (Castilla), eg. I7-I8, f. 9.

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    48 PAST AND PRESENT NUMBER 43inheritance. Bernardino de Mendoza, for example, for many yearsSpanish ambassador n Paris, was the younger son of the third countof Coruna, and had considerable financial problems until the kingbestowed on him the encomiendaf Penausende in the Order ofSantiago.59It was natural that at the time of a vacancy in an encomienda,hereshould gather large numbers of petitioners for it. Among thesemight be men and women of the highest social rank, for such couldeasily be the occasion for the development of bitter faction fighting.When the encomiendaf Moratallabecame vacant in I6I2, no less thantwenty-three candidates came forward, among them the PrincessDoria, the counts of Fuentes de Aragon, Castellar,and Guzman, andthe marqueses of Cerralvo, Sancino, and Ayamonte.60The Crown characteristically xtracted as much advantageas it wasable from this source. It alreadyenjoyed direct revenue from variousdues which fell on the encomiendass a whole, and it took the incomesfrom any vacant encomiendas.n addition, however, some of themore wealthyencomiendasere from time to time granted to membersof the royal family. At the beginning of the eighteenth century a"Relation of the encomiendashich are granted with future successionto the Lord Infante Don Phelipe" listed fourencomiendasf Santiago,five of Calatrava,and three of Alcantara, including four of the fiveencomiendasayores.6l The Order of St. John of Jerusalemwas theone most affected by this policy, which in fact culminated in thevirtual secularization of that Order under Charles III. Althougheven then the Castilian Orders did not escape, theirencomiendaserein fact used for the most part for the reward of services and as ameans of bestowing royal favour.Not infrequently encomiendasere held by women; althoughtechnically they could be considered only as administrators,and not ascomendadores,his meant in practice that they enjoyed all the financialaxld ocial advantagesofthe encomiendasithout any ofthe (admittedlymeagre) obligations to the Orders themselves that the comendadorgenerally owed. A widow was frequently allowed to continue inpossession of her late husband's encomienda,62r she might well begranted an encomiendaor the first time in the name of a younger son

    59 A. Morel-Fatio, "Don Bernardino de Mendoza", Bulletin Hispanique,Viii (I906), pp, 27-8.6?RAH., Colecci6n de Salazary Castro,I 26, ff. 65-8V.

    ffl AHN., Est., leg. 2605, f. 66.62 Luis de Salazar y Castro, Los Comendadores e la Orden de Santizo,ed. Marquesde Ciadoncha Madrid,I949) containsnvunerous xamplesof this.

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    MILITARY ORDERSIN SPANISH SOCIETY 49whom she had to support.63 In I7I2 more than one-fifth of theencomiendasf the Order of Calatravan Castille and Aragon were inthe hands of women (I2 out of 56), as were 8 of the 38encomiendasfAlcantara. 4The high nobility seem to have enjoyed practicallyhalf the totalnumber of encomiendas,nd a considerablygreaterproportion of theirtotal value. This is brought out clearly by the following tables,relating to the year I622, which show Erst the proportionof comenda-doreswho came from the ranks of the dukes, counts, and marqueses,or their immediate families, and second, the proportion of the totalvalue of the Orders'encomieszdashich these nobles held.65

    NUMBERS OF ENCOMIENDAS IN NOBLE HANDS, I622C)rder Number of Comendadoresrom ?'encomiendas titled familiesSantiago 94 38 4? *Calatrava 5 26 50 .9Alcantara 38 I7 44. 7


    Order Value of all Value of encomiendas ?5Oencomiendas in hands of noblesSantiago 308,889 I84,869 59. gCalatrava I35,000 I02,2I4 75 .7Alcantara II4,248 70,o67 6I . 3Total 558,I37 357,I50 63 "9

    The example of Calatrava in particular is quite striking: half theencomiendasreheld by nobles, yet these account in themselves forover three-quartersof the total value. Obviously there was alwaysthe possibility, however remote, that any knight of the Orders mightbe lucky enought to achieve an encomienda,nd it was perhaps for thisreason that Santiago, the Order with the most encomiendas,as alsoB3 RAH., Coleccionde Salazary Castro, I >6, ff. 89-9V: "Memoria que hizoel Sr. Francisco Gero. de Heredia de provisionesde encomiendascon beneficiode mugeres, ano I6I3"; BN., MS. 2693, ff. 57-8: "Relacionde encomiendasdela horden de Santiagoque fuesen dado a personas no cavallerosde la horden,

    a rnugeresy a otros efectos diferentes".64 BN., Seccion de Raros, R 23,888, no. 6.65 These tables have been drawnup from the informationcontained n BM.MS. Harleian 3569, ff. I85-204V (encomiendas nd their values) and in AGS.,Graciay Justicia, leg. 890 (encomiendasnd naJnesof comendadores).

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    5o PAST AND PRESENT NUMBER 43the Ordermost soughtafter or habitos.66But in reality, or poorerhidalgos, oldiersor any but the most influentialCrown ervants, hechances f obtaining n encomiendaf whatever aluewereslight.Only the most optimistic,or the most noble-blooded, an haveentered he Orderswithanydirectlymaterialistic otives. Caballerosde habito constitutedno special rank within the Castiliannoblehierarchy, ut they did havea distinct nstitutional haracter y virtueof the historical raditionwhich the Ordersembodied. It was thissenseof self-identity, nd n particularhe guarantee f nobilitywhichwas implied n it, which gave the habito ts place n the artistocraticcursushonorum. The intensityof the demand or militaryhabitos,however, an onlybe understoodn termsof a societywhichexcludedfrom its upper ranksnot only the base-born,but also the raciallysuspect.67

    In Spain there are two classes of nobility [wrote a contemporary]. Onegreater,which is hidalguia,and another esser, which is purity of blood, theclass which we call Old Christians. And althoughthe possessionof hidalguiais more prestigious, it is much more disgraceful to lack purity of blood,because in Spain we hold a convnon peasant of pure ancestry in greateresteem than an hidalgof dubious origins.68The MilitaryOrderswere one of the principalcommunities nSpaindevoted o the preservation nd continuance f the statutesofpurityof blood, which sought o exclude rompositionsof influenceall who might have any trace of Jewish or Moorishblood in theirveins. When the archbishopof Toledo, Juan Martinez Siliceo,introducedhis own limpieza tatute n the CathedralChapter thedecisive mpulse o the generalacceptance f limpiesa s an essential?s The list of knights of the Order of Santiago note I2 above) contains someI3,000 naInes; the correspondingvoluxnefor the other two Orders (Madrid

    I903) includes3,886 membersof the Orderof Calatrava nd2,I I8 of Alcantaratogether less than half the Santiago total. The Council of the Orders triedto introducesome system of rotationbetween the three Orders n the concessionof habitos;one such plan is printed by Jose Gomez Centurion,"Desproporcion-alidad en la concesion de mercedes de habitos entre las tres ?5rdenes deSantiago,Calatrava Alcantara n I674 y I703", Boletinde la Real Academiadela Hzstorsa, x] (I9I2), pp. 449-452.67 The remarksmade here in connection with the idea of limpiezade sangreare necessarilyvery lisnited. For a wider treatment the tW0 basic works areAntonio Doniinguez Ortiz, La Clase Social de los Conversos n Castilla en laEdad Moderna (Madrid, I956), and Albert A. Sicroff, Les Controverses esStatuts de "Puretede Sang" en Espagnedu XVe au XVIIe Siecle (Paris,I960).Recent work is well summarizedby Dominguez Ortiz in "HistoricalResearchon Spanish Conversos n the last fifteen years", CollectedStudies in honourofAmericoCastro'seightieth ear, ed. M. P. Hornik (Oxford, I965), pp. 63-82.68 BN., MS. I3043, f. II7V: "Papel que di6 el Reyno de Castilla a uno delos Senores Ministros de la Junta diputada para tratarse sobre el Memorialpresentadopor el Reyno a Su Magestadcon el libro del PadreMaestre Salucio."

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    MILITARY ORDERS IN SPANISH SOCIETY SIqualificationor officeandhonour he explainedhis action n thefollowingway:

    The principalreasonwhich hasmovedme the Arehbishopandmy Chapter omake the said Statute is that it is well known and attestedthat in the threeOrdersof Knighthood that there are in Spain, of which our Lord Emperor sgeneraland perpetualAdministrator,no personmay be admitted who is notan Old Christian.69With he Ordersointimatelyonnectedwitha conceptnowblessedby the Primal See of Spain, the pressure o obtainan habitowasoverwhelming.The Orders ouldnotwithstandhepopular emand.Grantsof habitos ecame o widespreadhatbefore ongthesituation

    was reachedwheresuspicion ell automatically n the nobilityandlimpiezaof any familywhich did not hold one. The habitoputautomaticallyotonly tspossessor, ut hisfamilyanddescendants swell, beyond all such suspicion,and the acquisitionof an habitothereforecame to hold supreme mportanceor the three or fourthousandamilieswhoformed he middleranksof the hidalgo lass.For the high nobility,whose positionno one woulddare to call inquestion,and for the commonpeople,the matterdidnot everarise.But forthe mass of middlinghidalgoshe pursuitof anhabitomightwell be anobsession, hesourceofinnumerable orries, xpenses, ndconflicts,he end ofall theiractivities.Habitoswerevaluable otonlyto themanambitiousorhispersonalfortune. They were also commonly oughtafter as dowries. Thenecessityto place one or more daughters n society throughanadvantageous arriagewasan acuteworry orthosewhoseownsocialpositionwas matchedby no correspondingortune. If the futurehusband ould be temptedby the offerof anhabito,however,a goodmatchwould be more or less assured. A list of those who hadpeiitioned heCrown orhabitosnMarch 646, containseventy-ninepersons, ifteenof whomasked or thehabito sa marriage oriion ortheirdaughters.70In I660 whatappears o be only one of severalattempts n the partof theKingandCounciloftheOrders o stoptheconcession f habitos sdowries oundshape n a RoyalDecree,7lbutin practicehis canhavehadlittleeffect,so greatwas the demand orhabitos o be givenfor this purpose. All thatcouldbe done wasto

    69 BN., MS. I3267, f. 27gv: "Sobre el Estatuto de Limpieza de la SanetaIglesia de Toledo".70 AGS., Graeia y Justicia,leg. 890: "Relaeion de personasque suplican aVM les hagamereedde Havito de las tres OrdenesMilitareseuyasmemorialesVM me ha snandado emitir" 3I Mar. I646).71 AGS., Est. (Espana), eg. 4I27: RoyalDecree, Madrid, 25 Aug. I660.

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    52 PAST AND PRESENT NUMBER 43insist that the future husband at least be named, rather than that thegrant be made a completely open one.7 2

    In the same way, a child could hardly be given a better start in lifethan to have an habitoconferred upon him at an early age. Theofficial age of entry into the Orders, fixed in the early Constitutions atsixteen, was reduced after the incorporation of the Orders into theCrown. Now it was permissible to assume the habitowithoutactuallyprofessing or taking any vows, at the age often, or in the case ofSantiago, only seven.73 Even this minimum requirement wasfrequently broken. Habitoswere commonly given to very youngchildren, and cases like that of the infant son of Rodrigo Calderon,Philip III's unscrupulous favourite, granted the dignity of an habitowhen he was not yet oneyear of age, need cause no particular urprise.74Once the Orders had so obvious a social function to fulfil, it wasinevitable that they should attempt to close their ranks to all who werersotofthe most unimpeachable ocial respectability. One can see fromthe Constitutions approved by successive General Chapters of theOrders how the entry requirementswere gradually ightened, until bythe early seventeenth centllry hidalgoblood was demanded of theparents and grandparentsof the claimantto anhabito;hisancestryhadto be free from all trace, however remote, of Jewish or Moorishblood;his pedigree similarly was not to contain victims of the Inquisition,whether penitenced or condemned, nor those who had pursued baseoccupations; while he himself had to be of legitimate birth and to enjoypopular esteem.75 At the same time the rigour of the proofs necessaryto ascertainthese qualities, which were insisted upon before anhabitocould be conceded, was also increased. Only two sets of papersrelating to proofs survive for the period before I5I8, the rest havingperished in a fire at Burgos, where for a time they were stored.76 Butsuch evidence as there is, suggests that up to the middle of the sixteenthcentury these inquiries were fairly rudimentary, being limited to the

    72AHN., Seccion de Consejos Suprimidos, leg. 4444, f. I48: Consulta ofCouncil of Castille, 26 Sept. I67I; leg. 4445, f. 76, idem., IO June I672; andseveral others.73 Ruiz de Vergara,op. cit., tit. I, cap. vii; Difinicionesde Calatrava, tit. VI,cap.Vii.74 Lviis Cabrerade Cordoba, Relacionesde las cosas sucedidas n la Corte deEspana (Madrid, I857), p. 267. Calderon had good reason for wishing hissons to enter the Orders in view of his own highly suspect ancestry. SeeMarcel Bataillon, "Don Rodrigo Calderdn Anversois", Bulletin de la Classe

    des Lettres et des SciencesMorales et Politiques,AcademieRoyale de Belgique,xlv (I959), pp. [email protected] Ruiz de Vergara,op. cit., tit. I, caps. i, ii, iii, iV, V; Difiniciones e Calatrava,tit. VI, cap. i.

    76 Vignau and thagon, Caballeros e Santiago,p. Xii.

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    MILITARY ORDERSIN SPANISH SOCIETY 53collectionof evidence roma few witnessesas to the hidalguia f thepretendent. The procedure ywhichevidencewastaken nthe formof writtendepositionsby speciallyappointednformants pparentlydidnot beginuntil around 540. From henon, however,he scopeandcomplexity f theseinvestigationsrewenormously. Extensivedocumentaryvidencewas required; xpenses hotup; passionswereexcited;andwitnessesmightwellbe suborned s pettyjealousieswereunleashed.7Once he requirementsorentryntotheOrdersweremade o severe,the numberof doubtsand queriesthat could ariseover eligibilitynaturally osesharplyas well. Under PhilipIII the manyhabitosdetainedn theCouncilof the Orders ndnot despatched,enerallynaccount f some ault nthe proofs,ed to complaintsndpetitionshatthe severityof the inquiries houldbe relaxed. When he wrote inI603, Diego dela Motareportedhattherewere ifty-four abitos eldup inthe Counciln thisway,whichwasthesourceof manygrievancesthroughout he provinces.78The annalistCabrerade Cordoba nI6I4 referredo the demandsora generalmodificationf thestatutesof limpiezade sangre,arld he mentionedas a particular ourceofcomplainthemanyAlabitosf theOrdersdetainedn the Council.79

    Therapidly rowingnumberof petitionsor habitos ot unnaturallymetwitha stiffening fthe rankson the partof thosewho werealreadyknights,andwho did not, for obviousreasons,wish to see the oldprestigeof the Ordersbecomedebased. Alreadyperhaps t was toolate. Suarezde Figueroa,writingn I6I7, recalledhow in his youtha wholevillagewould tand n aweshoulda knightofone of theOrderspass through. "The peasants n particularwouldpracticallybeatthemselveson the chestif they saw the Comendadoro by". Now,however,suchrespectwas a thing of the past. Knighthoodsweremuchmorenumerous, nd not a few knightsmenof no substance tall.80ThereignofPhilip Vwasan mportanturning oint or heOrders.Their nfluencen Spanish ocietywasnowat its height,yetparadoxi-cally his wastoprovedisastrousor nstitutionswhichhadgained hatpositionprecisely hrough heirexclusivecharacter. Moreoverhe

    77 Some interesting general renzarkson the conduct of the inquiries arecontained n Domingues Ortiz, La ClaseSocial de los Conversos, p. 73-9.78 Diego de la Mota, op. cit., f. I49.79 Luis Cabrerade Cordoba,Op. Cit.) p. 56I. Some of the msny petitions

    addressedto the Crown askingfor the speedy despatchof habitosdetainedinthe Council Inay be found in AHN., OM., Consejo de las ()rdenes, ArchivoSecreto, SeriesI, leg. 3I.80 ChristovalSuarez de Figueroa,El Passagero MadridI6I7), p. 443, quotedDominguez (5rtis,La SoczedadEspanola, , p. 202.

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    54 PAST AND PRESENT NUMBER 43periodof national mergency fterI635 which madeapparent o theworld hat heprestige f Spainwasonlya shadow,ncidentallyave helie also to the prestigeof the Orderswithin Spain. They embodieda gloriousmilitary radition, ut no longerwere heirmemberswillingor even able o fight n defenceof theircountry. Prestigewasall thatthe Ordershad hadto justify hemselves or overa century;once thatmythwasexploded, herewasnothing eft on which o rebuild.It was inevitable hat the accession f the new monarch houldbeheraldedwith a good deal of anticipatory umour. Many differenthopesandaspirations ereraisedbriefly, ut t was airly oonapparentthattherewasto be no realchangeof direction. The Orderswerenoexception. In I62I despatchesor 30 habitosweresentto Flanders orewarddeservingmembers f the Spanish rmy,and doubtless lso nan endeavouro silence hose criticswho pointedout the incongruityof honours in essence militarybeing given so regularly o merecourtiers.8l Courtiers,however,were not exactlyneglectedeither.Two years ater,while the law of the three actospositivoswas beingpromulgatedn order o facilitatehe taking f proofsof purityof blood,the Councilof the Orderswas making epresentationo the king overthe prodigalitywith which habitoswere granted.82 The Councilofthe Orderswas opposed rom he first o eventhe degreeof relaxationin the limpieza tatutes mplied n the law of the actospositivos. Theintention fthis law, ssuedas a Pragmatic y PhilipIV on Io FebruaryI623, was to render mmunefrom further nvestigation ny familywhichhad successfully ad ts ancestryested hree imes n either heMilitary Orders, the ColegiosMayores, the Inquisition, or theCathedral f Toledo.83 The Council,however, aw this as openingthe flood gates to a torrentof unsuitable nd unworthy pplicants,84and in fact it nevercompletely ut the law into effectsince it alwaysinsisted hatat leastoneoftheactos positivos submittedmusthavebeenobtained n the Council tself.5Whatever he attitudeof the Councilof the Orders,however, hekinghadto reward is servants omehow. In a letter o the Presidentof his Councilof State, Philip explained he position n terms that

    81 Dominguez Ortiz,Op. Cit., I, p. 203.82 BM., MS. Egerton 332, f. 2I I, Consultaof Council of Orders,5 July I623;ff. 2I2-5V, Consulta, n.d. On the Decree of the c4ct0s ositivos, see Sicroff,op. cit., pp. 2I6-220.83 The Pragmatic s printed in Novisima Recopilacion e Leyes, Lib. XI, tit.

    xxvii, ley 22.84 The protractedargumentbetween king and Colmcilof the Ordersover thismay be followed in the series of Consultas contained n AHN., OM., Consejode las ()rdenes, leg. 6275, cajaI.85 AHN., Seccion de Inquisicion, leg. 5I0, f. 29.

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    MILITARY ORDERSIN SPANISH SOCIETY 55could hardly be simpler. "Without reward and punishment nomonarchycan be preserved. Now rewardsmay be either financialorhonorific. Money we have not, so we have thought it right andnecessaryto remedythe fault by increasingthe numberof honours". 6Membershipin the Orders hereforecontinuedto rise. The followingtable shows the number of habitosof the Order of Santiago alone,despatchedin each five-yearperiodfrom I52ItO I660:87I52I-25 45 I57I-75 5I I6I6-20 I68I526-30 I07 I576-80 6I I62I-25 5I5IS3I-35 I36 I58I-85 90 I626-30 459I536-40 79 I586-90 79 I63I-35 308I54I-45 94 I59I-95 87 I636-40 464I546-50 48 I596-I600 I06 I64I-45 542I55I-55 23 I60I-09 I04 I646-50 424I556-60 80 I606-I0 I22 I65I-55 360I56I-65 II3 I6II-I5 I64 I656-60 I97I566-70 87

    These figuresspeak for themselves. In I557 the Order of Santiagocontained 242 knights, and in I572 only 22I.88 The opening of theseventeenthcenturysawthe firstbig increase n the membershipof theOrders;by I625 there were I,459 knights in the three Orders,957 ofSantiago, 305 of Calatrava, and I97 of Alcantara,89a figure wayabove anything known before. This was nothing, however, incomparisonwith what was to come. The Conde Duque de Olivares,whose all-pervading nfluence enabledhim to cast asidesuch restraintsas had prevailed hitherto, put habitos f the Ordersup for sale withthe same blithe disregard for public opinion as he had shown inintroducing into Castille the Portuguesemarranos.0The sale of habitoswas so open and unconcealed that even theauthor of the Nicandro,Olivares'chief apologist, does not trouble todeny it, but contents himself with justifying it, arguing that in facthabitoswere given only to men who would in any event have meritedthem, and who could properlybe rewarded n no otherway 91 At thebeginning of the war with France, the sale of habitoswas one of the

    86AHN., Est., Coleccion Vega, xix (Papeles Varios), sig. 859 D: king toPresidentof Council, II Aug. I625.87 Figures derivedfromVignau andlBhagon,Caballeros e Santiago.88 RAH., Coleccionde Salazary Castro,I 34, ff. 79-80, and8gv-go: "Nominade la Orden de Santiago".89 AGS., Consejoy Juntasde Hacienda,leg. 440-6I4: lists of knightsof theMilitaryOrders.90 On this, see Dominguez Ortiz, Politica y Haciendade Felipe IV, part II,chap. 3.91 BN., MS. II004, ff. 6v-7v: "Nicandro,o Antidotocontra as calumniasquela ignoranciay embidia ha esparcidopor deslucir y rnanchar as heroycas einmortalesaccionesdel CondeDuque de Olivares".

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    56 PAST AND PRESENT NUMBER 43faculties with which the count of Castrillo was empowered when hewas left in charge of the government in Madrid.92 Ippolito Guidi,the ambassador of the duke of Modena, was writing in I643 that itwas so commonplace for habitoso be sold in Madrid, that an oldretainer of Count Fulvio Testi was now to be seen proudly displayingthe cross of Santiago upon his chest.93 The story may well beapocryphal, and undoubtedly the majority of habitos till went topersons well qualified to assume them. It was an unfortunate story,however, from the point of view of a social hierarchy, the upperreaches of which were concernedto preserve and fortify their position;a hierarchy, moreover, still deeply affected by renaissance ideas ofnobility as a hall mark of both personal merit and ancient lineage.94Olivares had already shocked traditional orthodoxy by declaring ina meeting of the Council of State that the statutes of limpiezawereunjust and impious "against all law, divine, natural, and human",95and his own blood was notoriously suspect.96 It is hardly surprising,therefore, that under his rule grave suspicions came to be voiced atthe apparent subversion taking place within the Orders. Thewritings of satirists and moralists alike bear ample witness to popularalarm. 7

    Meanwhile the tranquility of the royal conscience was assured bythe customaryjuntasof lawyers and theologians. Penafiel describesthe situation.98His Majesty decided that three hundredhabitos hould be conferred,each fora certain sum in silver, so that the resultant- ield might help to defray theexpenses of the war irl Cataloniaand Poralgal. Before His Majesty issuedthe necessarydecree, however, he assembleduntas of distinguished awyerswho rnet together with many learned theologians to debate the matter, andto safeguardHis Majesty's conscience. They ruied that His Majesty mightdistribute the habitos o his vassals for a silver payment, without incurringthe sin of simony, and His Majesty thereuponresolvedto execute the project.92 AGS., Est. (Espana), eg. 4I26: king to Geronimo de Villanueva, I Nov.

    I64I; BM., MS. Egerton332, f. 238 : Count of Castrillo o Secretaryof Councilof Orders, I2 May I642.93 Carl Justi, Diego Velazquezund sein 3'ahrhundert,i (Bonn, I888), p, 234and note.94 Marcel Bataillon, 2rasme t l'Espagne Paris,I937), second Spanishedition,Erasmoy Espana (Mexico, I966), iS the essential work on the reception ofrenaissance humanist ideas in sixteenth-century Spain. Interesting for itsremarkson the humanists'view of nobility is Fritz Caspari,Humanism nd theSocial Order n TudorEngland Chicago,I954).95AGS., Est. (Inglaterra), eg. 2849: Consulta of Council of State, I Nov.

    I625.9 6 Julio CaroBaroia,La SociedadCriptofudia n la Cortede FelipeI V (Madrid,I963)5 P 4?97 Julio Caro Baroia, Los 3?udios n la Espana Modernay Contemporanea,i(Madrid, I96I), pp. 355-7.98 Penafiel, op. cit., f. 88.

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    MILITARY ORDERSIN SPANISH SOCIETY 57The price for which habitoswere sold varied, but in relationto theprestige of the oice, it was not high. A Jesuit news-letter of I639

    reported: "Every day there are many habitos estowed as pensions orto rewardservicesrendered,and so frequentlyare they sold at a figureof I8,000 or 20,000 realeshat this might be reckonedas the customaryprice of them".99 Pellicer'snews-sheet for I2 November I64I, gavea little more informationon what happened:Circumstancesbeing at such a desperatepitch, His Majestyhas been pleasedto orderMy Lord Countof Castrillo o disposeof 500 habitos, ith provisionthat the proofs be conductedat court by commonrepute,amongpersonsofquality who deserve them, who shall contributein cash stlch a sum as isequivalentto the value of the grant.l??

    Clearly the distribution of hundreds of habitos nd the relaxationmadein the procedurefor investigatillgthe qualitiesof the candidates,reduced now to a mere formality, could only combine to producea devaluationof the prestige of honours once so prized. As over somuch of western Europe at this time, the "inflationof honours" wasremoving much of the dignity attachedto them.l?lThere were naturally many people who were concerned that thisshould not happen. In I643 it was firrillyreassertedthat the proofsfor habitoshould be madein the placesof originof the pretendants. 02Going to Madrid or to some other large city was an obvious way toescape the petty jealousies of a small community, and to hide anydefects of ancestry that these might uncover.l03 The Orders hadtherefore to insist that necessaryinquiries should not be limited tothose who came into contact with the pretendantin the capital, whomight well be quite ignorant of his family background. Otherreformswerealso in the air. Scarcelyhad Olivaresretiredfrom oicethan the king ordered that habitoshould not be given in return forloans or other services to the Treasury, and that the concession ofhabitoshould also be stopped in respect of those who hitherto hadbeen granted them for serving, or for raising men to serve, inCatalonia. 04With the summoningof a GeneralChapterof the Orders n s652-the first such meeting for nearlythirty years,despite the statuteto the

    99Memorial istorico spanol,v (Madrid, I862), pp. 257-8.100 osef Pellicer y Tobar, "Avisos Historicos", reprinted in AntonioValladares,Semanariorudito,xxii Madrid, I790), p. I62.101Lawrence Stone, "The Inflation of Honours, I558-I64I", Past andPresent,o. I4 (Nov. I958), pp. 45-70, relatesspecifically o the Englishcourt,but containsmuch of obvious relevancetoo to the Spanishexperience.102 lfiIemorialistorico spanol,vii,pp. 34-5.103 See Julio Caro Baroja,Los fudios,i, pp. 376-7.104 RAH., Coleccionde Pellicer,vol. xxvi, ff. s36v-7.

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    PAST AND PRESENT NUMBER 43effect hata Chapterwasto be calledevery hreeyears hopeswererevived hatsomethingurthermightbe doneto haltthe downwardtrend.l05 Discussioncentredon how habitosmightbe restored otheirolddignity, hrough einforcingheproofsof nobilityandpurityof blood. The most notoriousabusescertainlydo appear o havebeeneliminated, utit wasclearlyarfromeasy o pullback,oncetheappetitesof wealthyand influential spirantso membershipn theOrdershadbeenwhetted. The customof concedinghabitoso theprocuradoresf the Cortes ortheirservices,orexample,wasalreadywell-established.l06Whoeverhad occasion o lend any mannerofserviceotheCrown r tothecommunity, owevermodest t mightbe,considered imselfentitled o be honoured orit witha knighthood,andnotinfrequentlyewouldactually btainone. TheCrowntselffound t hard o refrainromutilizing o cheapandeffectivea wayofrewardingts servants. In I652n forexample,aftera popular evoltin Seville,many loyal citizensconfidently xpectedto have theirassistancen quellingheriotrecognized ndrewardedwiththegrantof anhabito. In theend,the CardinalArchbishop imenteldrewupa list of thirty-twonameswhich he submitted o the CouncilofCastille,who in turn selectedthirteenof the most deservingandbestowedhabitos ponthese.l07Theprestige f theOrdersmightbedilutedbystrength fnumbers,but it could not by this means ever disappear. What Olivaresattempted o do in addition,however,was to use the Ordersas asourceof men and of moneyfor warpurposes,andin so doing heextinguishedor ever the lingeringnotionthat they still containedcorporatelyomemeasureof militaryprowess. An habitomight begiven as a reward orthemanwhoraiseda givennumberof men fortheroyalarmies thisowncost,l08butthechiefconcern ftheCondeDuquewas osecurehepersonalmilitaryervice fallthearistocracy,

    105 Interestingpapersrelatingto this Chapterare contained n AHN., OM.LibrosManuscritos,sig. I340 C- BN., MS. 7I7- and BM., Add. MS. 28437.106 This is apparent rom a summary nspection of the Consultasde Graciaexpedients issued by the Camara de Castilla for the concession of variouspositions and ofiices. They are to be found in AHN., Seccion de ConsejosSuprimidos,legs. 4407-4742. As early as I525 procuradores ere petitioningfor habitosbeforethey returned o their localities:AGS., Est. (Castilla), eg. I3,f. 69.107 AHN., Seccion de ConsejosSuprimidos, eg. 7I62, f. 25 (Royal Decree,26 July I652), andf. 29 (Consultaof Councilof Castille,28 Aug. I652); AntonioDominguez Ortiz, "Documentossobre el motin de la Feria en I652", ArchivoHispalense) os. 2I-2 (I947), pp. 69-93.108 For example AGS., GuerraAntigua, leg. I329: Consulta of yunta deExecucion,0 July I640; leg. I374: idem.,IS Mar. I64I; leg. I379: Consultaofunta de Coroneles)9 June I64I; and several more.

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    MILITARY ORDERS IN SPANISH SOCIETY59and n particularfthe knights f theMilitaryOrders 09 Repeatedly,knightsweresummoned o serve n person,or at leastto appointand

    pay a proxy o serve n their stead,ll?but the regimentwhichwas soassembled was starved of provisions,suffered heavy desertions,particularly n the part of the knights hemselves,andwas defeatedby Frenchforcesnear Lerida n October 642. Admittedly t wasable to recoup ts forces sufficiently o play an effectivepart in thelater campaigns,ncluding he recapture f Barcelona; ut by thisstage it was not a companyof knights at all, but merely one ofmercenaries aid by the knights to fight in their name. It is aninterestingand rather patheticcommentaryon the ideals of theMilitaryOrders hat even these paid mercenarieshad to submitthemselves t thiscritical tage n Spain'smilitaryortuneso the sameinquiriesas to birthand ancestry s characterizedhe admission fnew knights,beforebeing allowed o takeup arms.lllIf Olivareshad at root a pressingneed to use the revenuesandresources of the Orders in a time of nationalemergency, thefavouritism nd corruptionwhichmarkedout the reignof the lastAustrianking had little such justification. Under Charles II itwould appear hat habitoswere no longer openly sold, though thisdoes not by anymeans mply thattheir concession everted o moreorthodox criteria. Rarely now does there seem to be even thepretence that habitoswere bestowedas a reward of true merit.Among the mass of petitions or habitosdirected o the CouncilofCastille, he reasonsput forward o justifythe requestsare diverseand occasionallyizarre. Someasked or an habito orhaving oughtbulls n localfiestas;ll2or others t wasenough hat their athershadserved as treasurers f millones r in other positions n the admini-stration.ll3 Manywere contentsimply with detailing he serviceslent in the past by their ancestors. Petitionswerepassedon in thesame way by the Council of the Indies in favour of relatores,treasurers,lguaciles mayores, andothercolonial fficials.ll4 Hitherto

    109For full details see Antonio Dominguez Ortiz, "La Movilizacion de laNobleza Castellana en I640", Anuario de Historia del DerechoEspanol, xxv(I955), pp. 799-823.110E.g. BM., Add. MS. 2I439, f. 77: Order of Philip IV that the knights ofCalatrava erve on the frontiers of Spain, 30 Jan. I640. Other instances aregiven by DominguezOrtiz in the article cited in the previousnote.1ll BM., MS. Egerton332, f. 24I: "Calidadesque han de tener los hidalgosque han de ser admitidosparaservir en el batallonde Cavalleriade las Ordenesen lugar de los Comendadores Cavallerosdellas",3I Dec. I642.2AHN., Seccion de ConsejosSuprimidos, eg. 4444, ff. 99, I00.3 Ibid., f. I47; leg. 4445, f. 50; and manyothers.114AGI., Seccion de Gobierno,Indiferente General), eg. 788, containsmanysuch examples.

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    these etitions had gone directly to the Council of the Orders forconsideration,ut they were now so numerousthat it was consideredadvisableor them to be channelledin the first instance through theCamaraeCastilla,wherethey could be vetted. This body rejectedaood number of them out of hand, but others which had no greaterintrinsicmerit it accepted, with no very clear criteriaof discrimina-tion. There were attempts to reserve habitosof the Order ofSantiagoor men with military service, while allowing entry to theotherwo Ordersto those who meritedit throughfamilydistinctionorpoliticalervice,ll5 but how far these were effectivein practiceis notat ll clear What is certainis that the characterand purpose of thevenerablenstitutionof knighthood n the MilitaryOrdershadbecomecompletely erverted.It has been argued already that the Military Orders served asamirrorof the social ideals of Golden Age Spain. From this poiIltofview it is perhapseven more interestingto discoverthe reasonsforwhichhabitosmight be withheld than those for which they might beconferred. The papersrelatingto habitoswhich were never grantedremainn the SecretArchive of the Council of the Orders,anda greatdealof workwould be necessaryto drawany generalconclusionsfromthem. Other sources, however, are more accessible. Dispensationsgrantedby the Papacy make clear the most frequent difficulties inwhicha would-be knightmight find himself. He might, for example,enjoyhis hidalgo tatus by royal privilege rather than by blood; hemight discover that he was of illegitimate birth or that his bloodcontained some trace of a Jewish or Moorish ancestor; or perhapsmost interesting in view of the light it sheds on the position of theOrders within contemporary society, he might discover that theoccupationor professionthat he, or one of his ancestors,pursued, wasconsideredunworthy of the prestige of knighthood.The numberof dispensationsgranted n differentyearsis impossibleto ascertainwith any certainty. Such figures as there are, however,conform well with what one might expect, as is evident from thetable opposite, page 6I.ll6Dispensations under Philip II were few and far between, but asteadyrise is evident underhis successor. With the coming to powerof Olivares,the number of dispensationsrose out of all proportion,as

    115 RAH., Variosde Historia,volume I (9-29-5-5949), f. IOI: Royi Order,4 Sep. I692.116 AHN., OM., Consejo de las 6rdenes, leg. 6275, caja 2: "MemoriadeBrevesde Su Sanctidaden razonde dispensary suplirdefectosparaobtenerelhabito de la Orden de Santiago". See also RAH., Coleccion de SalazaryCastro,135, ff. 132-3.

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    PAPALISPENSATIONSFROM THE ENTRY REQUIREMENTSOF SANTIAGO, I558-I657I558 I I583 - I608 2I559 - I584 - I609 3I560 - I585 - I6I0 II56I - I586 I I6II 4I562 I I587 - I6I2 2I563 - I588 - I6I3 II564 - I589 - I6I4 2I565 2 I590 I I6I5 3I566 - I59I - I6I6 5I567 - I592 - I6I7 8I568 - I593 I I6I8 2I569 - I594 - I6I9 II570 - I595 - I620 4I57I - I596 - I62I 4I572 - I597 I I622 II573 - I598 I I623 6I574 - I599 2 I624 5I575 - I600 - I625 5I576 - I60I I I626 I0I577 - I602 I I627 6I578 - I603 I I628 I4I579 I I604 2 I629 I5I580 - I605 - I630 6I58I - I606 I I63I II582 - I607 - I632 2


    I633I 34I635I636I637I638I639I640I64II642I643I 644I 645I 646I647I648I 49I 50I65II 52I653I 54I655I656I657






    habitoswereconferredn largenumbers o raisemoneyfor the warwithFrance,andafter 640 forthe Catalan ndPortugueseebellionsaswell.ll7 An analysisof the personalor ancestralaultsfor whichdispensations eregranted howsthefollowing:Philip II Philip III Philip IV TotalLack of nobility 2 22 II7 I4IIllegitimacy 5 23 2I 49Pursuit of base office - 3 67 7?Impurity of blood 3 I - 4Noble status by royal privilege only - I 3 4

    Total I0 50 208268

    These figures are not as revealing as they might be, since thecategoriesarenot altogetherdistinct. Pursuitof a manualoccupation,for example, might well be described simply as lack of nobility;moreover,the number of those hidalgos ho enjoyedtheir position byprivilegeandnot by blood seemsundulysmall,andsome men properlyof this categorymay in fact also be included under this same generalheading. It is perhapssignificant,however, that underPhilip IV the

    117 The tableshouldbe readin conjunctionwith that given aboveon page 55showingthe numbersof habitosgranted n the Orderof Santiagooverthe sameperiod.

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    percentagef dispensations given for faults of nobilityshould be

    noticeablyigherthan under Philip III (56-25as against44per cent),

    whileispensations given for low occupations, amere 6 per cent

    underhilip III should under his successor have risen over five foldto2o2per cent. Impurity of blood was rarelythe subject

    of formaldispensation,nd when it was, it was invariablyon behalf

    of thosewithoorish antecedents. Those families with the blood

    of Jewsoronverted ews in their veins were, as we have seen,

    rigorouslybarredrom the Orders, as they were from other similar

    closedcommunitiesn Spain. The only formal exception to

    this was adispensationade by Philip III in favour of the descendants

    of thesaintly. Pablo de Cartagena,bishop of Burgos

    in the thirteenthcentury,ll8privilege which raised a storm of criticism.ll9 Inpractice,any others of dubious radical antecedents seem

    to haveenteredhe Ordersby varioussubterfuges,impossibleas it

    was foranygenealogicalnquiries, howeverthorough, to be completely

    sure.l20Generallythe initiative for dispensing from one or other

    of theentryequirementsof the Orderswas takenby the king, in

    the face ofmorer less open oppositionon the partof the Councilof the

    Orders.Somexamples of this are well known. The habitowon by

    thedistinguishedeneral Julian Romero

    was the outcome only ofPhilipI's personal intervention.l2l In I624 the admiral FranciscodeRibera was awardedan habitoby Philip IV in recognition

    of hisheroichree-day running battle with a Turkish force

    ten timessuperior.The informacionesere very extensive and over

    onehundred itnesses were finallyexamined, only for the Council

    of theOrderso deny the grant for lack of proof as to the hidalguiaf

    hismother. It was only strongpressurewhich led to the necessary

    briefofdispensationbeing requestedand grantedby Urban VIII;

    but thekingnsisted, in defianceof his Council,

    that no mention be made inthe ormaltitle of the habitohat it had been issued only as a result ofspecial papal dispensation.l22 Perhaps the best example

    of the118 FranciscoCanteraBurgos,Alvar Garciade Santa Maria

    y sufamilia deConversosMadrid, I952), pp. 280-4.119BM., MS. Egerton 332, ff. I90-I: "Representaciondel

    Consejo de las(:)rdenesmanifestando os inconvenientesdel Breve Pontificio

    por el qual seconcede a los descendentesde D. Pablo de Cartagenaobispo

    de Burgos elobtenerhabitosmilitaresa pesarde serconfesos".

    120 A numberof examplesare providedby Julio CaroBaroja,Losdios, ii,

    partiv, sections4 and 5.121 For full details see Antonio Marichalar,

    3tulianRomero Madrid, I952),pp. I I4-5. The papers relating to Romero's habito are in

    AHN., OM.,ExpedientesePruebas arael ingreso nla Ordende Santiago,

    no. 72I3.122 CesareoFernandezDuro, Introductionto Jose Wanguesnert

    y Poggio,El AlmiranteD. FranciscoDiaz Pimientay su dpoca Madrid,

    I905), p. Xii.

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    63ILITARY ORDERSIN SPANISH SOCIETYnecessity for royal intervention in order to secure anhabito s that ofDiego Velazquez. The red cross of Santiagowhich the artistproudlydisplays on his tunic in his self-portrait in Las Meninaswas the out-come of a long sequence of obstruction and delay on the part of theCouncil of the Orders. The legend attached to this painting-thaton its completion Philip himself seized the brush and added the crossto the artist's chest, saying that this was all that was necessary torender it a masterpiece must unfortunately be rejected: theformalities attending the grant of the habito ate frorlltwo years afterthe work was finished. But the essence of the story is true, in that ithighlights the direct royal responsibility for the conferring of theknighthood.l23 These particular instances are naturally well-documented, but they could doubtless be repeated of many other lessfamous men.The impression one gains is that, in general terms, the hierarchy ofthe Orderswas intransigent so far as entry was concerned. When therules were bent in any way, royal influence was usually not far to seek.If in the General Chapter of I652 it was conceded that dispensationson behalf of men with distinguished military service might be soughtand granted more readily, this was only because of the oppositionraised by the widespread grants of habitoso lawyers, administrativeofficials, and courtiers. Once one began to reassert the militarynature of the Orders, it was hard not to concede that in the case ofsoldiers certain defects of genealogy might necessarily have to beoverlooked. The argument is apparent in a paper dated 3 AugustI653, directed to the king by the Council of the Chapter of the Orderof Santiago.l24 Among the points it made were the following:

    The Orderof Santiagoand its knightshave alwaysenjoyedenormousprestige,but since the year I600 . . . its rules have been relaxed n all mannerof waysa situation worthy of the closest attention of Your Majesty and your greatwisdom in looking to a remedy for it, since both as King and Master you oweit to honour and favour the Order. The Council of the Chapter thereforeasks:That no habitoof this Orderbe concededto anyonewho is not clearlyreputed123There is naturally a large literature on Velazquez and his habito. Theproofs, which took II3 days to conduct, are printed by G. CruzadaVillaamil"Informacionesde las calidadesde Diego de Silva Velazquez para el habito dela Orden de Santiago", Revista Europea, i (I874), pp. 39-43, 80-4, I05-I0275-8, and 402-6. Additional information is provided by Francisco R. deldhagon n two articles: "Diego Velazquezen la Orden de Santiago",RevistadeArchivos,BibliotecasyMuseos, ii (I899), pp. 257-7I; and "Nuevos documentosreferentesa Diego Velazquez en la Orden de Santiago", bid., vii (I902), pp.57-69. The legend of Las Meninas s discussedby Carl Justi, op. cit.124 BN., MS. 7I7, ff. 203-I4: "E1Consso del CapituloGeneralde la Orden deSantiago representa lo que tiene por combeniente se disponga para mayorbeneficio della".

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    64 PAST AND PRESENT NUMBER 43to be a gentleman of pure ancestry, or in possession of a rich estate withwhich to lend lustre and honour to the Order, as was invariably he case inthe time of Philip II; he had secret inquiries made as to the characterandbackgroundof every pretendentbefore concedingthe habito, aking care thatno honour or award be made to anyone whose proofs did not show himworthy of them . . . with the exception of soldiers whose valorous servicesand exploits themselves enhance their blood. This honour, establishedforthe rewardof military valour, s no more than their due.That Your Majesty be pleased to refrain from bestowing the favour of anhabitoon any of your servantswho does not enjoy the rank of knight in theroyal household, nor on any of your ministers' servants who is not of thisrank.Military honours were established or militarymen; the rewardsof study forthose who aspired o judicialor administrative osts. Nonwadayshe positionis so distorted hat not only do oidoreshave the greaterprestige, but they alsohold the nlajorityof the habitosand encomiendas hich were not intended forthem at all, with the result that there are few such oices that they have notappropriated or themselves. Only a few years ago there were no admini-strators,other than the membersof the Council of the Orders,enjoyingthesepositions; if these last were promoted to membership of the Council ofCastille, they were at once recognizable by their habitos. Now, howevereven the alcaldesde cortecan aspire to the same honour .... It is not rightthat soldiers cannot share in honollrs designed for themselves, while thesemen are enjoying the benefit of them. Generosity n bestowing mercedes fthis sort has advanced o such a point that even the solicitorsof the Councilshold habitos and the Colegiosare full of them, a development which hasresulted in a fall in the esteem in which they were held in former timesThat His Holiness should not be asked to grant dispensations rom the entryrequirementswhich the knights of this Order have to fulfil, since they areunnecessaryand give rise to a lack of esteem for the Order, on which theyreflect little credit. The only exception that may be made is in respect ofsoldiers. If their deeds and services are as fine as those of Julian Romerowho was dispensed from the lack of nobility in his farnily, hey may be heldto warrantspecial favour. But they must not have any trace of Jewish orMoorish blood, nor have any ancestor who has been penitenced by theInquisition, in conformitywith the relevant statute. A new statute shouldbe Inadeto the effect that no dispensationsbe given at all other than to thosewho have served ten years in the war. In any event nobody should be ableto receive dispensations for more than one fault, in order to fulfil therequirements or entry.The manwho chosenot to confess o any defects n his ancestry,nthe hope that he mightbe fortunate nough o be granted dispensa-tion, hadnecessarilyo seekalliesamong he witnesses rld nformants.This might indeed be advisable il any event, for who knew whatconsequencesmalice,or simplya badmemory,mighthave. No less aperson hanthe bishopof Cuzcowrote n I636, advisinghis nephew,who was a candidate or an habito,to secure riendlywitnesses. Heshould take good care to reward hem in advance,suggestedthebishop,who promised o let his nephewhavea suitable um of moneyfor this purpose.l25 On the other hand, there was always thepossibilityof admitting he faults in one's pedigree,and appealing125 MemorialHistoricoEspanol,xviii (Madrid, I864), pp. XiV-XVi.

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    65ILITARY ORDERSIN SPANISH SOCIETYdirectly to the king, the one man who could set aside the rules laiddown by the Orders and their Council, and the one man also withsome interest in rewarding services rendered in his name.To the possible defects of birth and ancestrythat any person seekingan habitomight have, there was added a further potential stumblingblock: that of base office. Manual occupation was, as we have seen,incompatible with nobility, and as such with the assumption of anhabito. The criteria adopted by the Order of Santiago at Toledo inIS60 for "low and vulgar offices" were those of silversmith andpainter, if these occupations were pursued as money-makingactivities,shopkeeper and moneylender, embroiderer, stone-cutter, inn ortavern keeper, scribe (other than one of the royal scribes), publicattorney, or any other p