THE ROYAL HOUSE OF BOURBON

 

DOC 24. ABDICATION OF PHILIP V IN FAVOR OF LUIS I, 1724
(English Translation)

"Decree of Abdication

"Having pondered deeply these past four years and meditated long and thoughtfully on the miseries of this life, through all the illnesses, wars and tribulations which God has seen fit to visit upon Us during the twenty-three years of Our Reign, and not unmindful that Our eldest son, Don Luis, sworn heir to this Our Throne, is now come of age, married and endowed with judgement and talent enough to rule and govern this Kingdom wisely and with justice, We are resolved to renounce the cares of government and the running of the Realm and to Abdicate all Our Estates, Kingdoms and Domains in favour of the aforementioned Don Luis, our firstborn Son, and to go into retreat along with Our Queen, whom We have found well-disposed to this Our resolve and eager to come with Us into the sanctuary of this Our Palace of San Ildefonso, to serve God, and, with all these burdens of State taken from Our shoulders, to meditate on death and to care for Our bodily well-being. We hereby inform Our Council of this Our resolve that they may publish it in all those places they deem fit and that it may thereby come to the notice of all Our subjects. Given in Our Palace of San Ildefonso on the tenth day of January, 1724."

Taken from SPAIN UNDER THE BOURBONS, Edited and Translated with a critical introduction by W. N. Hargreaves-Mawdsley, MA, Dphil, FRHistS, Prof of History, Brandon University, Canada, London, Macmillan, 1973, quoting from

Fray Nicolás de Jesús Belando, Historia civil de España y sucesos de la guerra y tratados de la paz; desde el año de mil setecientos hasta el de mil setecientos terinta y tres, Madrid, 1740, Part Four, pp. 320-1

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DOC 25. ADVICE OF COUNCIL OF THEOLOGIANS ON WHETHER PHILIP V COULD TAKE UP THE THRONE FOLLOWING THE DEATH OF LUIS I

English Translation

'Sire.. As Your Majesty has been pleased, through the note passed to us by the Marquis of Grimaldi, to command this Assembly to pronounce upon whether, in its judgement, Your Majesty's having made a Deed of Abdication renouncing the Throne and stating Your intention of never again ascending to it, nor taking up the reins of government at any time, does constitute a moral impediment to Your wearing the Crown without any qualms of conscience, and whether Your Majesty is under any obligation to honour Your covenant, thereby paying no heed whatever to the demands of the common weal, to the best interests of the Realm, to the fact that the Peace-Treaties are as yet unconcluded and Their Majesties the Princes still under age, as well to other considerations too many and too obvious to mention, and has referred to the Council for consideration of the Deed written in Your Own Hand in which You abdicated in favour of the King, our Sovereign - may He be in Heaven -this assembly, ever obedient to Your Royal commands as it is meet and right it should be, does hereby declare, its heart filled with respect and with humility, that: Having given this grave problem and its momentous attendant circumstances profound and searching consideration, this Assembly is of the opinion that, the Deed of Abdication of both Crown and Government and the pledges contained therein never again to assume these mantles of power notwithstanding, Your Majesty is in duty bound, on pain of mortal sin, to take up the reins of government or the Regency of the Realm. The Assembly does not hold Your Majesty is subject to a binding duty of this nature in respect of the Throne, for, whereas the whole Nation will be placed in jeopardy if Your Majesty does not return either to the task of government or to the role of Regent, such grave risks are necessarily entailed in a refusal by Your Majesty to wear the Crown. The right which this Assembly has to tell Your Majesty that the Deed of Abdication is not binding under these circumstances is that same right of which it availed itself when it informed Your Majesty of Your duty to govern the Kingdom or to assume the Regency, as, in the light of this latter duty, the substance of the Deed becomes untenable in law, and, this being so, not only theologians but also the precepts of right reason dictate that the vow in that Deed is not binding.'

Taken from SPAIN UNDER THE BOURBONS, Edited and Translated with a critical introduction by W. N. Hargreaves-Mawdsley, MA, Dphil, FRHistS, Prof of History, Brandon University, Canada, London, Macmillan, 1973, quoting from Fray Nicolás de Jesús Belando, Historia civil de España y sucesos de la guerra y tratados de la paz; desde el año de mil setecientos hasta el de mil setecientos terinta y tres, Madrid, 1740, Part Four, pp 363, 364)

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