Act at the Spanish embassy in Pars
The furniture has been donated to our country by the French family Griaule-Franzoni coinciding with the 80th anniversary of the end of the Civil War and the republican exile
The table at which the former Spanish presidentManuel Azaa(1880-1940) signed from exile inFrancehis resignation in 1939 as president of theSecond Republictravel toSpain, coinciding with the 80th anniversary of the end of the Civil War and the Republican exile, celebrated this year.
This historic object, donated in early summer to Spain by the French familyGriaule-Franzoni, travel soon toMadrid. The table, whose symbolic act of delivery to the Spanish Government was held this Friday at the Embassy of Spain inPars, since July in the Spanish Consulate inLyon, after donation.
In the coming weeks, the Secretary of State ofGlobal Spain, Irene Lozano, responsible for promoting knowledge of Spain and Spanish, organizing an act of reception of the piece and tribute to Azaa at the headquarters of theMinistry of Foreign Affairs. It is still pending to say what his final destination will be because "the situation of political interinity has also slowed everything down a bit," Lozano explained.
Descendant of an exile
The Spanish Government learned last February in the existence of this table during one of the tributes inAnnecyYGliresto the members of the residence to Nazi Germany.Francisca Ledesma, descendant of a Spanish exile, informed Global Spain that inColonges-sous-Salvethe table where Azaa signed his resignation as president of the Republic and that the French citizen was preservedLuc FranzoniHe was his custodian.
Franzoni, who has received the order from Mr Civil from Lozano, is the grandson ofMarcel Griaule(1898-1956), a French anthropologist and ethnologist, pioneer of ethnographic field studies in France. Griaule rented 80 years ago to Azaa his home in Colonges-sous-Salve, next to the Swiss border, when the president of the Second Republic was exiled in February 1939.
The then Spanish president had traveled toGenevahoping to get the support of theSociety of nations(predecessor of the United Nations) and when not achieving it temporarily settled in Colonges-sous-Salve.
Azaa, who had no intention of returning to Spain after the Civil War, was clear that he would submit his resignation as soon as France andUnited Kingdomrecognized the government of Francisco Franco. When this happened, he sent from that French town at the foot of the Alps his resignation as president of the Republic to the president of the Courts of the Republic.
"I can't keep that position"
"Under such conditions, it is impossible for me to keep, even nominally, that position to which I did not resign the same day I left Spain, because I hoped to see this time taken advantage of for the sake of peace. I therefore place in the hands of I see, as President of the Cortes, my resignation as President of the Republic, so that your excellence deigns to give it the appropriate procedure, "Azaa wrote in his letter of resignation. It was the last political act of the Second Republic.
The letter of resignation was signed on February 27 at the table generously donated to Spain by the Griaule-Franzoni family. The furniture was part of the furniture of the house that Azaa rented when it was exiled. The table was preserved for the last eight decades by that French family, aware of its historical value. They initially tried to donate it to the town hall of Colonges-sous-Salve, but, seeing that they did not take care of it as it deserved, they recovered it to deliver it one day to Spain.
"Bearer of memory and hope"
Franzoni wanted to leave Spain with this valuable and very significant piece of furniture for the historical memory and democratic memory of the country, coinciding with the 80th anniversary of the republican exile. A table that, according to Franzoni, is "bearer of memory and hope."
Lozano expressed in an act at the Embassy of Spain in Paris the "huge and deep gratitude" to the people who have made it possible for this table to be part of "the heritage of Spain, of our memory".
The secretary of state insisted on the historical and symbolic value of this "modest" piece of furniture, which "reminds us of the intellectual condition" of this Spanish politician. Not only did Azaa sign at this table "his letter of resignation and the end of his political career", but here he probably also wrote some of the pages of his diaries.
The secretary of state ended her speech with a phrase that gives title to the speech that Azaa delivered in theBarcelona's town hallon July 18, 1938 and that, after two years of contention, he had a message of reconciliation: "Peace, Piety and Forgiveness." The president of the Second Republic died in exile on November 3, 1940 inMontauban(southwest of France), where he is buried.
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