The Government ‘pardons’ the marquisate of Ana Torroja and nine other titles granted by Franco

The Government has excluded a dozen noble titles granted by Franco from the list of privileges -a total of 33- that will be abolished when the Democratic Memory Law comes into force, whose project will continue to be processed in the Senate after its approval last Thursday in the Congress of Deputies. Specifically, there are six counties, three marquisates and one barony, created between 1949 and 1974.

Among the titles granted during the Franco era that will remain is that of Marchioness of Torroja, currently held by the singer Ana Torroja. The Minister of Justice ordered the issuance of a succession letter on January 25 in favor of the former vocalist of the Mecano group, who requested it after the death of her father: Civil Engineer José Antonio Torroja Cavanillas, who died in July 2021 .

Franco granted this dignity to the Torrojas when she had not yet turned two years old. On October 1, 1961, the dictator bestowed the title on the Engineer of Roads, Canals and Bridges Eduardo Torroja Miret -paternal grandfather of the artist from Madrid- in recognition of a life dedicated “to research, teaching and carrying out very important public works in our country, to which he gave all his activities and extolled with his prestige.” This is justified in the concession decree, published in the Official State Gazette (BOE) the following day.

It was posthumous, since
Torroja Miret -author of the Jerez winery Tío Pepe (González Byass) together with the architect Fernando de la Cuadra and the cover of the grandstand of the Zarzuela racecourse in Madrid, among numerous other works – had died three and a half months earlier at the age of 61. The singer’s father held this privilege from 1966 until her death in 2021, making her -the eldest of the nine siblings- the third Marchioness of Torroja.

The same day that he signed the decree in Burgos that made Eduardo Torroja Miret a nobleman, Franco granted five more titles: specifically the marquisates of Kindelán, Casa Cervera and Bilbao Eguía, and the counties of Pallasar and Martín Moreno. These do appear in the list of those that will be extinguished when the Democratic Memory Law is definitively approved after the summer in the Cortes and sent to the BOE to deploy its effects.

The new law will extinguish 33 titles for assuming an “exaltation of War and Dictatorship”

Unlike the engineer Eduardo Torroja, one had been at the head of the Ministry of Justice after the Civil War (Esteban Bilbao Eguía) and the remaining four held important military responsibilities for the national side during the war. The dictator wanted to honor their names in gratitude for the “services rendered in the national crusade.”

The 1st Marquis of Kindelan It was Alfredo Kindelán Duany, lieutenant general of the Army who was in command of the “Air Forces that victoriously maintained their domain in the skies of Spain throughout the campaign,” reads the decree. Later critical of Franco and supporter of the monarchical restoration in the figure of Juan de Borbón, he published in 1945 the book My war notebooks 1936-1939reissued in 1982 with all the passages that censorship had removed.

Joaquín García Pallasar (count of Pallasar) was a lieutenant general and former head of the General Command of the Artillery, while Juan Cervera Valderrama (marquis of Casa Cervera) was an admiral of the Navy who headed the Headquarters of the General Staff of the Navy during the war and Francisco Martín Moreno (count of Martín Moreno) a division general chief of the General Staff of the Armies.

List of the 33 titles of nobility that will be extinguished when the Democratic Memory Law comes into force, including those held by Franco’s two grandchildren: the Duchy of Franco (Carmen Martínez-Bordiú) and the Lordship of Meirás (Francis Franco), both with Grandeur of Spain.

Along with that of Torroja, there are another nine titles awarded during the Franco regime that do not appear in the relationship of those that will be extinguished with the entry into force of the new law for being granted or suppose an “exaltation of the War and the Dictatorship”, as justified in the explanatory statement. The PSOE managed to push through the text in the Lower House with the support of United We Can, PNV, EH Bildu, PDeCAT, Más País and Compromís.

One of those that will not be abolished is the prairie county, granted by Franco in July 1949 posthumously to the Navarrese Víctor Pradera Larumbe. Founder of the Popular Social Social Party after having militated in the Carlist Party, he was assassinated by republican militiamen at the beginning of the Civil War. Since 1971, the title has been held by Víctor Pradera Gómez.

They will also keep wrinkle county -delivered to the Barcelona ophthalmologist Hermenegildo Arruga Liró in 1950 and currently expired- and the Arteche, created the same year in favor of Julio Arteche Villabaso (president for life of Banco de Bilbao from 1942 until his death in 1960). Today it is held by María Victoria de Aznar y Arteche.

Marquessate of Ramón y Cajal

Patricio Echeverría Ezcurdia will be able to continue being Count of Echeverria of Legazpia -title granted by the dictator in 1958 to his paternal grandfather, the Gipuzkoan businessman Patricio Echeverría Elorza- and Santiago de Ybarra Churruca -former honorary president of the Vocento group- that of the open, delivered in 1969 to the Bilbao industrialist Alfonso Churruca Calbetón. Nor will Ramiro de Maeztu Manso de Zúñiga lose the Maeztu Countyinstituted posthumously in 1974 to “perpetuate the memory” of the writer from Vitoria Ramiro de Maeztu (assassinated in October 1936).

as reported Popular Voicehas also been excluded from the final relationship the marquisate of Ramon y Cajal, awarded posthumously in 1952 to the distinguished doctor and scientist from Navarra -Nobel Prize in Medicine in 1906- on the occasion of the first anniversary of his birth. His great-granddaughter María Urioste Ramón y Cajal has been the owner since July 2020.

The Marquisate of Santa Maria de la Almudena -created by Franco in 1954 in favor of Juan Bautista Tedeschini Danieli, nephew of the cardinal who held the Nunciature in Spain during the Second Republic (Federico Tedeschini)- and the barony of Camporredondo -granted in April 1965 in favor of María Samaniego Martínez-Fortún- will not be abolished either, even though they were granted in the period between 1948 and 1978.

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The Government ‘pardons’ the marquisate of Ana Torroja and nine other titles granted by Franco