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The Monarchy through History
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Symbols of the spanish Monarchy

 
The crown and the sceptre of the National Heritage Royal Collections, dating from the reigns of Carlos II and Carlos III, are kept at the Royal Palace in Madrid. Since the reign of Isabella II, they have been used in the proclamation ceremonies for the Spanish Monarchs, and they are the highest symbols representing the Spanish monarchy.

The Royal Crown

The Royal Crown
The simple hoop decorated with linked branches supports eight plates with heraldic emblems crowned by laurel branches. From them come eight arches with an interlaced branch design. Atop them is an orb and Greek cross. It is marked with the shield crowned with a bear and strawberry tree/ 75; castle 75; VE/LAS/CO (on one of the mirrors); shield crowned with a bear and strawberry tree/ 88; castle 88 (on one of the arches).
It was made by Fernando Velasco, silversmith to the Royal Family from 1748. His personal mark appears beside those of the assayers of the city and Court of Madrid, and the chronological mark of 1775. One of the diadems also includes the date 1788, which indicates that it may have been damaged or modified.
The reason for this commission is unknown. However, its proportions indicate that it was ceremonial and symbolic in nature, with the arches displaying the arms of the kingdoms of Castile, Leon, Granada, Parma, Tyrol and the Bourbon fleur-de-lis.
The crown is in a purely Neoclassical style. Its iconography is openly related to the exaltation of the monarchy. The laurel wreaths allude to abundance, and the orb and cross reference earthly and heavenly power. Used as a symbol of the Spanish monarchy, it accompanies the sceptre made in the 17th century both in the proclamation and swearing in of the new monarch, and at funeral ceremonies.
Data on the Royal Crown:
  • Artist: Fernando Velasco (1741-1787)
  • Date: 1775 and 1788
  • Material: cast silver, engraved and gilded.
  • Size: 39 cm. high; 18.5 cm. hoop diameter; 40 cm. maximum diameter.
For more information, see: www.patrimonionacional.es

The Royal Sceptre

The Royal Sceptre
Baton made of three silver-gilt segments, covered with fine-worked filigree and cells that still retain remains of blue, green and turquoise enamel. The segments are separated by rings embellished with garnets set in square mounts. It is tipped with a carved rock-crystal ball.
This is the type of baton traditionally used to distinguish the royalty and nobles of Central Europe, which are of similar length and also tipped with a spherical finial.
It was described in 1701 in the inventory taken upon the death of Charles II, though its origins are unknown: “A Baton covered in white gilded silver and coloured enamel. Includes four rings embellished with garnets and a checkered crystal ball finial three quarters long, valued at Twenty-Five silver ducats, which equal four hundred and twelve-and-a-half Reals in bullion”. It is considered to be a Central European work by an unknown artist, as it lacks marks.
Symbolic in nature, it does not appear in any official portraits of the monarchs until the 19th century. Queen Isabella II is holding it in her hand, as a sceptre, in several official portraits kept at Banco de España, the Museum of Fine Arts of Seville and the Museum of Romanticism of Madrid.
Together with the crown made by silversmith Fernando Velasco, it is used during the proclamation and swearing in of the new monarch and in funeral ceremonies.
Data for the Royal Sceptre:
  • Date: mid-17th century
  • Artist: Anonymous
  • Material: gold, silver, garnets, enamel and quartz; cast, engraved, encrusted, filigree and carving
  • Size: 68 cm
For more information, see: www.patrimonionacional.es