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The Many Past Lives Of The Consul

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Chapter Summary

This chapter analyses the development and influence of the Spanish Consular Service since the Visigotic period until today. From the early Middle Ages with the Euricus Codex, passing by the widening of the consular commercial and maritime functions and the Catalonia's expansion across the Mediterranean, to the Book of the Sea Consulate in the 15th century, and the new situation created under the Catholic Sovereigns and the Habsburgs, Spain has played a significant role in the building-up of the consular institution and has had a decisive influence in the codification of consular law. The chapter ends with a reflection on the need to recover all the traditional functions of the Spanish consular institution, such as the commercial one (victim of the alleged 'diplomatization') as a means to face the contemporary challenges of international society.

Keywords:Catalonia's expansion; Euricus Codex; Habsburgs; Mediterranean; Sea Consulate; Spanish consular service



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