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The jornada to Santander of Charles Stuart, Prince of Wales

Giambologna V A until Oct 2028.jpg

By Anunciación Carrera de la Red, Universidad de Valladolid

This virtual exhibition commemorates 400 years of the journey that Charles Stuart, Prince of Wales, made to Santander in September 1623, an unknown episode of the history of Anglo-Spanish relations here reconstructed from the first time. He was returning from the Spanish Court, while still the negotiations for his marriage to Philip IV's sister, the Infanta Maria Anna, remained unresolved. It shows the archival documents and printed relaciones from which the itinerary and the main events connected with the jornada have been reconstructed. Considered jointly, they yield a contrast between the splendour of the receptions and gift exchanging that the press chose to highlight and the stressful and rather miserable conditions in which this unusual encounter between the English prince and Old Castile took place in reality.

Four hundred years ago, in September 1623, a young foreign prince, accompanied by about two hundred men, crossed the lands of Old Castile in his carriage. He was traveling from El Escorial in the direction of the port of Santander, to embark back home to England.

It was Charles Stuart, Prince of Wales, and he was in a hurry. He wanted to return with his father James I as soon as possible; he felt so outraged after having spent six months at the Spanish Court trying unsuccessfully to speed up the conclusion of the negotiations of his marriage with the Infanta Maria Anna, Philip IV's sister.

Follow the links to learn more and access sources.


Anunciación Carrera de la Red, Universidad de Valladolid, 2023


Since 2021, this work has received financial support by the Ministerio de Ciencia e Innovación, Gobierno de España: MIST, Misiones y transmisiones: Intercambios entre la Península Ibérica y las Islas Británicas de la época moderna extensa (PID2020-113516GB-I00)


I should like to acknowledge the following institutions which have granted permission for the reproduction of images in this site:

  • AGS, Archivo General de Simancas
  • BUS, Biblioteca de la Universidad de Sevilla
  • AMSG, Archivo Municipal de Segovia
  • AMVA, Archivo Municipal de Valladolid
  • HMM, Hemeroteca Municipal de Madrid

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News article. 'El desconocido viaje del Príncipe de Gales por la España vaciada'. The Conversation, 15 January 2024.

Online Seminar. A Travelling Court and Household for the Prince of Wales: The troublesome jornada to Santander of September 1623, by Anunciación Carrera de la Red. Impious Itineraries: Routes between the British Isles and the Iberian Peninsula, organised by Berta Cano Echevarría. The Warburg Institute, 31 May 2022.