1 His early career 2 In the government 3 Presidency 4 Last days 5 Azaña's writings 6 See also 7 References 8 Select bibliography 9 External links
His early career
Familiar arms of Manuel Azaña.
Birthplace of Manuel Azaña, in Alcalá de Henares.
Born into a rich family,
Azaña (right) with Alcalá Zamora.
Niceto Alcalá-Zamora, prime minister of the provisional government of
the Republic, named Azaña
Minister of War on 14 April. Alcalá-Zamora
resigned in October, and Azaña replaced him as prime minister. When
the new constitution was adopted on 9 December, Azaña continued as
prime minister, leading a coalition of left-wing parties, including
his own Acción Republicana and the Socialists (PSOE), while
Alcalá-Zamora became President of the Republic.
Azaña pursued some of the major reforms anticipated by the republican
program. He introduced work accident insurance, reduced the size of
the Spanish Army, and removed some monarchist officers. He also moved
to reduce the power and influence of the Roman Catholic Church,
abolishing Church-operated schools and charities, and greatly
expanding state-operated secular schools. The Spanish legislature, the
Cortes, also enacted an agrarian reform program, under which large
private landholdings (latifundia) were to be confiscated and
distributed among the rural poor.
However, Azaña was a "middle-class republican", not a socialist. He
and his followers were not enthusiastic for this program. The agrarian
law did not include state-funded collective farms, as the Socialists
wanted, and was not enacted until late 1932. It was also clumsily
written, and threatened many relatively small landholders more than
the latifundists. The Azaña government also did very little to carry
it out: only 12,000 families received land in the first two years.
In addition, Azaña did little to reform the taxation system to shift
the burden of government onto the wealthy. Also, the government
continued to support the owners of industry against wildcat strikes or
attempted takeovers by militant workers, especially the
anarcho-syndicalists of the Confederación Nacional del Trabajo
(National Confederation of Labor or CNT). Confrontation with the CNT
erupted in bloody violence at Casas Viejas (now Benalup),
Castilblanco, and Arnedo.
Meanwhile, Azaña's extreme anti-clerical program alienated many
moderates. In local elections held in early 1933, most of the seats
went to conservative and centrist parties. Elections to the "Tribunal
of Constitutional Guarantees" (the Republic's "Supreme Court")
followed this pattern.
Thus Azaña came into conflict with both the right and far left. He
called a vote of confidence, but two-thirds of the Cortes abstained,
and Alcalá-Zamora ordered Azaña's resignation on 8 September 1933.
New elections were held on 19 November 1933.
These elections were won by the right-wing Confederación Española de
Derechas Autónomas (CEDA) and the centrist Radical Republican Party.
Presidential Standard of
Military parade in
Alcalá de Henares
When the Cortes met in April, it removed President Alcalá-Zamora from
office. On 10 May 1936, Azaña was elected President of the Republic;
Quiroga succeeded him as prime minister. Azaña by this time was
profoundly depressed by the increasing disorder, but could see no way
to counter it.
Azaña repeatedly warned his fellow Republicans that the lack of unity
within the government was a serious threat to the Republic's
stability. Political violence continued: there were over 200
assassinations in February through early July.
By July, the military conspiracy to overthrow the Republic was well
underway, but nothing definite had been planned. Then on 13 July,
José Calvo Sotelo, leader of a small monarchist grouping in the
Cortes, was arrested and murdered by a mixed group of Socialist gunmen
and Assault Guards. Azaña and Quiroga did not act effectively against
the killers.
On 17 July, right-wing, Falangist, and Monarchist elements in the
Republican army proclaimed the overthrow of the Republic. The
rebellion failed in Madrid, however. Azaña replaced Quiroga as Prime
Minister with his ally Diego Martínez Barrio, and the government
attempted a compromise with the rebels, which was rejected by General
On 13 September, Azaña authorized Minister of Finance
Manuel Azaña's grave in Montauban, France.
Azaña lived in exile in France for more than a year after the war,
trapped by the invasion of France by Germany and institution of the
Nazi German occupation regime. He died on 3 November 1940, in
Montauban. According to testimonies, he received the last rites
before his death. The
A policy should never be based on the extermination of the adversary; not only because —and that is a lot to say— it is morally an abomination, but because it is materially unfeasible. And the blood unjustly spilled by the hatred that seeks to exterminate will be reborn, sprouting and giving accursed fruits; a curse that will not be restricted, unfortunately, to those who spilled the blood, but which will be over the very country which —to compound its misfortune— absorbed it.
During the many years of his political activity, Azaña kept diaries. His work Diarios completos: monarquía, república, Guerra Civil was published posthumously in Spanish in 2003. See also
History of Spain Second Spanish Republic Spanish Civil War
^ Social Democracy and Welfare Capitalism: A Century of Income Security Policies by Alexander Hicks ^ a b c d e f g h Payne, Stanley (1970). The Spanish Revolution. New York: W. W. Norton. pp. 97–99, 181–184, 191–196. ^ a b Beevor, Antony (2006). The Battle for Spain: the Spanish Civil War, 1936-1939. New York: Penguin Books. pp. 27–30. ISBN 0-14-303765-X. ^ Payne (2006), p. 356 ^ “Police Job”, TIME magazine, February 13, 1939 ^ Beevor, p. 412 ^ Ninguna política se ha de fundar en la decisión de exterminar al adversario; no sólo —y ya es mucho—porque moralmente es una abominación, sino porque, además, es materialmente irrealizable; y la sangre injustamente vertida por el odio, con propósito de exterminio, renace y retoña y fructifica en frutos de maldición; maldición no sobre los que la derramaron, desgraciadamente, sino sobre el propio país que la ha absorbido para colmo de la desventura.Diario Córdoba - 2 March de 2015; Mas Madera? ^ Azaña, Manuel (2003). Diarios completos: monarquía, república, Guerra Civil. Barcelona: Crítica. ISBN 84-8432-142-8.
Lagarrigue, Max. "
Amalric, Jean-Pierre (2008). "Intellectuals in the political arena (1898-1940)" (in French). Arkheia Revue.
Azana, Manuel (1981). "Vigil in Benicarlo (Josephine and Paul Stewart, English trans.)". Associated University Press. Missing or empty url= (help)
Cherif, Cipriano De Rivas (1995). "Portrait of an Unknown Man: Manuel
Azana and Modern
Preceded by Juan Bautista Aznar Cabañas President of the Government 1931–1933 Succeeded by Alejandro Lerroux
Preceded by Manuel Portela Valladares President of the Government 1936 Succeeded by Santiago Casares Quiroga
Preceded by Niceto Alcalá-Zamora
President of the Republic 1936–1939 Succeeded by Álvaro de Albornoz Liminiana (in exile)
Spanish Head of State
v t e
Prime Ministers of Spain
Acting prime ministers shown in italics.
Queen Isabella II (1833–1868)
Martínez de la Rosa Toreno Álava Álvarez Mendizábal Istúriz Calatrava Espartero Bardají Heredia-Spínola Frías Alaix Pérez de Castro A. González Ferraz Cortázar Sancho Espartero Ferrer A. González Rodil J. M. López Gómez Becerra Olózaga González-Bravo Narváez Miraflores Narváez Sotomayor Pacheco Salamanca García Goyena Narváez Clonard Bravo Murillo Roncali Lersundi Sartorius Mendigorría Rivas Espartero O'Donnell Narváez Armero Istúriz O'Donnell Arrazola Mon Narváez O'Donnell Narváez González-Bravo Havana
Democratic Sexennium (1868–1874)
Madoz Serrano Prim Topete Serrano Ruiz Zorrilla Malcampo Sagasta Topete Serrano Mendigorría Ruiz Zorrilla Figueras Pi Salmerón Castelar Serrano Sierra Bullones Sagasta
The Restoration (1874–1931)
Cánovas Jovellar Martínez Campos Sagasta Posada Azcárraga Silvela Fernández-Villaverde Maura Montero Moret López Domínguez Vega de Armijo Canalejas García Prieto Romanones Dato Maura Sánchez de Toca Bugallal Sánchez-Guerra Primo de Rivera Berenguer Aznar-Cabañas
Second Republic (1931–1939)
Alcalá-Zamora Azaña Lerroux Martínez Barrio Samper Chapaprieta Portela Barcía Casares Martínez Barrio Giral Largo Negrín
Franco Carrero Fernández-Miranda Arias
Arias Santiago Suárez Calvo-Sotelo F. González Aznar Zapatero Rajoy
v t e
Presidents of Spain
Spanish Republic (1873–1874)
Estanislao Figueras^ Francesc Pi i Margall^ Nicolás Salmerón y Alonso^ Emilio Castelar y Ripoll^ Francisco Serrano^
Spanish Republic (1931–1939)
Niceto Alcalá-Zamora^^ Manuel Azaña^^ Niceto Alcalá-Zamora Diego Martínez Barrio^^ Manuel Azaña Diego Martínez Barrio^^ Segismundo Casado^^^ José Miaja^^^
Spanish Republic in exile (1939–1977)
Álvaro de Albornoz^^ Diego Martínez Barrio Luis Jiménez de Asúa José Maldonado González
^President of the Executive Power ^^Acting head of state ^^^Interim head of state
WorldCat Identities VIAF: 22156967 LCCN: n79093003 ISNI: 0000 0001 0855 8146 GND: 118505319 SUDOC: 028466535 BNF: cb12029685w (data) NLA: 36058445 NKC: jn20000600538 ICCU: ITICCUMILV45997 BNE: XX823