Aguirre y Ortés de Velasco, José María, V Marquis of Montehermoso

(Vitoria, 1733-1798)
Second Lifetime Director (1785-1798) of the Royal Basque Society of the Friends of the Country.

A prominent figure during the Alava Enlightenment, that triggered the desires and interests of a family who enjoyed the favour of the new dynasty ever since Philip V, who had recently entered the Peninsula, was staying at the palace in Vitoria owned by the Aguirre family, and who would later be captivated by the virtues of María Antonio de Salcedo y Chávarri, the widow of Vicente José de Aguirre y Zárate. Once the title of Marquis of Montehermoso was granted in 1708, the Aguirres henceforth maintained a strong link with the courtiers favored during the mid-century by the presence of Tiburcio Aguirre Ayanz in Madrid, an uncle of our protagonist.


Gaspar de Munibe y Tello, II Marquis of Valdelirios

(Huamanga, Peru, 1711- Madrid, 1793)
Court Counsellor (1768-1793) of the Royal Basque Society of the Friends of the Country.

A key figure to understanding the development of the Basque Enlightenment in Madrid having represented the Royal Basque Society for over twenty years at the highest level in Bourbon state institutions. As Court Counselor, an office that was never recognized in its Statutes, he succeeded in bringing together the supporters of the Enlightenment project, who resided in the capital, to move forward with important initiatives such as the Royal Seminary of Bergara or the failed Fisheries Company in Cecial. A group, including some from his circle and the vice treasury in Madrid, with strong ties to the Royal Congregation of St. Ignatius of Loyola was organized, among which were Eugenio de Llaguno (1724-1799) and Domingo de Marcoleta (1717-1796).


Ignacio de Urquijo y Olano, II Count of Ospín de Urquijo

(Bilbao, 1907-Markina-Xemein, 2002)
Refounder (1945) and director (1957-1959) of the Royal Basque Society of the Friends of the Country.

He was a diplomat, historian and expert in Basque studies, and educated within a family that was dedicated to studying the Basque language and culture, in which his uncles Gabriel Adolfo (1866-1933) and Julio de Urquijo Ybarra (1871-1950) gained prominence.




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