The Objects

27th May 1815

Source: Archivo Histórico Nacional, CONSEJOS, L.1405, Exp.315 – 6, with the permission of the Ministerio de Educación, Cultura y Deporte de España.

Ferdinand of Spain blocks news from France

Contributed by: Graciela Iglesias Rogers

Popular reactions in the Hispanic world were conditioned by an information black out imposed by the Bourbon king Ferdinand VII, who only ten months earlier had been restored to his throne in Madrid after spending six years as an involuntary guest of Napoleon in France.

The images show a copy of a Royal Order (27 May 1815) banning ‘all imports of French printed media or any other material capable of spreading distorting and seductive news’ about the return of Napoleon throughout the Hispanic world. This message also retransmitted the Royal dispatch of 18 April 1815 that had confirmed news of what was described as Napoleon's ‘invasion’ of France, mentioning the support he had received ‘among the military that largely declared in his favour’ and contrasting this reaction with the ‘displeasure of the largest and healthiest part of the French Nation that has decided to back its legitimate Sovereign and the determination of the Most Christian Majestic Sovereign to leave the confines of his Kingdom to prevent a bloodshed, the inevitable consequence of a civil war (...).’