Alvarez de Faria

Godoy (Alvarez de Faria), Manuel

 

Born May 12, 1767, in Castuera; died Oct. 4, 1851, in Paris. Spanish statesman.

Godoy was the favorite of Queen Maria Louisa and King Charles IV and was the actual ruler of Spain from 1792 to 1808 (except for the period from 1798 to 1801). He was a member of an impoverished noble family. Godoy was prime minister of the kingdom from 1792 to 1798 and promoted Spain’s involvement in the war with the French republic (1793–95). The defeat of the Spanish troops forced Godoy to conclude a peace treaty at Basel in 1795 and a military alliance with France in 1796. As a result of this alliance, Spain, placed in a position of dependence on France, was drawn into a ruinous war with England. In 1798 circles of the court camarilla hostile to Godoy made use of the national hatred toward him and obtained his dismissal. In 1801, Godoy was appointed generalissimo of the Spanish troops and soon he was again head of the government. In 1801 and 1803, Godoy concluded new treaties with France that led to another war with England and the occupation of Spain by French troops. As a result of the popular uprising of Mar. 17–18, 1808, Godoy was arrested and his property confiscated. (The total value of Godoy’s property exceeded the state budget of Spain.) After French troops entered Madrid on Mar. 23, 1808, Godoy was exiled to France by order of Napoleon.

L. V. PONOMAREVA