Saturday, April 11, 2015

King of Arms

King of Arms is the senior rank of an officer of arms and every European kingdom had one. In Spain the heraldic office dates back to the 16th century.
The Chronicler King of Arms (Cronista Rey de Armas) in the Kingdoms of Spain was a civil servant who had the authority to grant armorial bearings and had judicial powers in matters of noble titles. They also served as a registration office for pedigrees and grants of arms.

Appointments to the Corps of King of Arms were made by the King and these appointments were for life. In modern times the Corps of Chronicler King of Arms went through several changes. Important changes were made in 1915, it was abolished in 1931 and restored after the end of the Civil War. The last Chronicler Kings of Arms appointed by the Spanish Ministry of Justice, Don Vicente de Cadenas y Vicent, died in 2005.
The government of the autonomous community of Castile and León has appointed Don Alfonso Ceballos-Escalera y Gil, Marques de la Floresta as Chronicler of Arms for Castile and León, and he is the modern equivalent of the Spanish King of Arms. Don Alfonso also serves as personal heraldic officer to the former King of Spain Juan Carlos I and the current King Felipe VI of Spain.