Timeline | Before 1800 to After 1930 | SPAIN


Country | Theme | Description


Spain | Rediscovering The Past

Antigüedades Árabes de España published by Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando – it marks the beginning of the rediscovery of the Arab past.

1808 - 1813

Spain | Political Context

Guerra de la Independencia (Peninsular War) during the French occupation of the Iberian Peninsula and the rule of King Joseph-Napoleon Bonaparte.

1809 - 1899

Spain | Political Context

The beginning of the independence process in the Spanish territories in South America and Mexico, influenced by the American and French revolutions. The first Declaration of Independence is in Ecuador in 1809 and the American process ends in 1898 with Cuba, followed by the independence of the Philippines and the selling of the Carolinas and the Mariana islands to Germany in 1899.


Spain | Political Context

Spain's first Constitution of 1812, influenced by the French Revolution, is revolutionary because it declares the Spanish American colonies to be provinces and all their inhabitants citizens. The constitution reduces some of the powers and privileges of the monarchy, aristocracy and church and will influence future post-independence South American constitutions. Up to 1876 Spain will change its constitution four times (1837, 1845, 1869, 1876).


Spain | Political Context

The Valençay Treaty ends the war between Spain and France. Return of King Fernando VII and absolutist restoration.


Spain | Reforms And Social Changes

Slave trade (trata de negros) abolished by the Spanish Parliament at Cádiz. Following the influence of the French Revolution the anti-slavery movement grew in Europe. In 1837 slavery was abolished in Spain but not in the colonies. The government later freed the slaves of Puerto Rico (1873) and Cuba (1878).


Spain | Fine And Applied Arts

Founding of the Museo Nacional del Prado with the Royal collection of paintings as one the first museums in Spain.

1820 - 1823

Box, engraved with a scene showing King Fernando VII taking his Oath to the Constitution of 1812 
See Database Entry

Spain | Political Context

In 1820, the army mutiny led by Rafael del Riego leads to King Fernando VII accepting the Constitution, in spite of his former opposition to constitutional monarchy, bringing in the Trienio Liberal period of popular rule. The Congress of Verona in 1822 gives France a mandate to restore Fernando as absolute monarch. In 1823 the French army invades Spain to restore absolutism, ending the Trienio Liberal.


Spain | Reforms And Social Changes

The French army, known as “Los cien mil hijos de San Luis” (“the hundred thousand sons of St. Louis”), invades Spain to restore absolutism ending the Trienio Liberal (1820 –1823). In 1820 King Fernando VII had agreed to the Constitution, in spite of his opposition to a constitutional monarchy. The Congress of Verona in 1822 gave France a mandate to restore Fernando as absolute monarch.

1828 - 1910

Spain | Rediscovering The Past

Beginning of the restoration of the Alhambra by the Contreras family. The restoration is more an “adornment” of the monument following ideas from Orientalism. The Contreras' casting workshop reproduces plaster decorations from the palace sold as souvenirs and displayed at international exhibitions, spreading the Alhambrismo or Alhambresque style.
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