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The inheritance of a Duke of Medina Sidonia

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Chapter Summary

The ninth Duke of Medina Sidonia inherited his titles after decades during which his father and grandfather had preserved and expanded their noble authority in accordance with the enormous economic possibilities of Lower Andalusia. Their seigneurial position was further strengthened by their successful strategy of becoming the representatives of the crown in Lower Andalusia, both institutionally and through informal channels. The former mostly comprised military functions, and the latter consisted in seeking the greatest political linkages possible with the court, especially through strategic alliances with the governments of the Hispanic monarchy, above all with the kings' favorites (validos). The dukes of Medina Sidonia had a long tradition of military service in defense of Andalusia, one of the cornerstones of the family's social prestige in the Hispanic monarchy.

Keywords: defense of Andalusia; Duke of Medina Sidonia; Hispanic monarchy; inheritance; Lower Andalusia



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