Biography of Andrés de. Marqués de Moya Cabrera (1430-1511)

Spanish Hidalgo, first Marquis of Moya, born in Madrid in 1430 and died in the same village October 4, 1511. Raised in a small noble family of low social extraction, its court activity during the reigns of Henry IV (1454-1474), and the Catholic monarchs (1474-1516), helped him to make an extraordinary political career, which came to its Summit with his appointment as Marquis de Moya (1480), and the consequent formation of an extensive heritage land, centered mainly in the provinces of Madrid and Cuenca. Andrés de Cabrera and his wife, Beatriz de Bobadilla, have been taken regularly by the historiography of medieval Castilian as the paradigms of the gradual rise of the nobility of service to the highest positions of importance, competing with the nobility of blood.

Childhood and early years

Cabrera belonged to a family Cuenca formed by Knights of the urban oligarchy. During the Central years of the 15th century, the struggle for power in basin had as main protagonists to Juan Pacheco, Marquis of Villena, and Bishop Lope Barrientos. While the Cabrera family owed much of its social hegemony to the Bishop, Andrés entered the service of the Marquis of Villena to 1446, and was doing with their trust until, in 1451, the own Juan Pacheco, head of the House of the then-Prince of Asturias and the future Henry IV of Castile, appointed him as the Prince, with which showed confidence in the young lordling Cuenca and also his attempt to put him under the supervision of his men control the life of the future King. The next milestone in the social rise of Cabrera took place in 1462, when most of Enrique IV, Beltrán de la Cueva, Butler was rewarded for his services with the title of count of Ledesma; left vacant the stewardship, and again under the consent of Villena, Andrés de Cabrera was named new Butler. This position, a sort of general coordinator of the rest of palatal trades, increased the privanza of Cabrera over the King, as been pointed out P. Molina (art. (op. cit., p. 287): "Was not, therefore, a political office, although he could have profound political implications derived from the proximity to the monarch and the consequent potential for influencing the Royal decisions, aspects these to Andrés de Cabrera would know thoroughly exploit to their advantage".

From 1462, the position of Cabrera in the organizational chart of the effective power of the Spanish monarchy was widening continuously, which combined with military courtly activities. Thus, in 1468, he was appointed justice and guardian of the walled gates of Segovia, the city enriquena par excellence, always related to the monarch, and with a very important specific weight in the development of the Government of Enrique IV. One year later, and to safeguard more even the segovian position, Cabrera was appointed warden of the Alcázar of Madrid. As a culmination of this domain, 1470 became, on behalf of Enrique IV, with the holding of the alcazar of Segovia, especially important if one takes into account that in the cells of the fortress is guarded by the Royal Treasury, one of the most important economic reserves of the Kingdom. Before the end of the year, also he married Beatriz de Bobadilla, Lady of the then Princess Elizabeth, the future Queen Catholic turnout. From all these positions, the domain of Cabrera on Segovia was virtually absolute, which soon led him to antagonize with the Urban Council and members of the oligarchy.

While the fidelity of Cabrera had been total Enrique IV, even in the difficult period between 1465 and 1468, when part of the nobility rose to his brother Alfonso as King by the well known farce of Avila, towards 1473 the warden of Segovia began to incline his sympathies towards the Catholic Kings, thanks to the influence of his wifea ladies major in the retinue of Isabel, and also an attempt of mutiny of Segovia against Cabrera, allegedly harassed in the shade by the Marquis of Villena, who had sensed the change of preferences of Cabrera and wanted to replace him in the control of the Royal Treasury. The failure of the conspiracy caused the cause of Isabel and Fernando Cabrera total support, and his mastery of the city was the cause, for example, that after the death of Enrique IV (1474), the supporters of Isabel asestaran a hard blow to the morale of the enriquenos: the new Queen of Castile became Crown precisely in Segovia, and warden Cabrera gave the keys of the Alcázar and, therefore, control over the treasure of Castilla, which lent an unbeatable helps the legitimization of Isabel, very weak even though the Covenants of stewing.

Formation of the territorial heritage

Lionized Cabrera in politics, its support to Queen Isabel was the cause of that, since 1474, begin kneading, in company of his wife, an extensive territorial heritage and a wealth of income: in 1479 was awarded the lordship of Moya (Cuenca), as well as part of the territories of the towns of Valdemoro and Casarrubios. Some time before, between 1476 and 1477, the former partisans of Enrique IV at Segovia, which does not forgive the betrayal of Cabrera, forced the dismissal of both governors after a new riot. To compensate for his apartment in Segovia, the Catholic monarchs granted Andrés Cabrera and Beatriz de Bobadilla the title of Marquis of Moya, which raised them to the highest ranks of the nobility, without other baggage to its proximity to royalty and the concrete support in the most troubled moments of monarchical succession. In this sense, P. Molina has rightly pointed out that "personal attachment to the successive monarchs Enrique IV e Isabel I, together with appropriate dives in the political arena, made it possible that, in effect, the Crown became architect of the future finance through a myriad of mercedes, donations and privileges" (art. (op. cit., p. 289).

The heritage of the Marquis was growing from the 300,000 receives donated through inheritance swear by the Crown, up to 600.000 granted by his appointment of 1480, as well as other different quantities in different income from the Crown. In addition, they also had other income of stately type through the granting of various territories in Casarrubios (Toledo), Valdemoro, Chinchón, Villaviciosa de Odón, Ciempozuelos and Valdelaguna (Madrid), as well as Cuenca Lordship of Moya. In this way, the marquesses of Moya became, in just half a century, in one of the richest and most powerful of Castile, lineages position obtained exclusively by its proximity to the Regal surroundings. This trend increased in time of the Hapsburgs during the 16th and 17TH centuries, meant the powerful advance of the nobility of service (or courtesan nobility) about the nobility of blood, a move towards the courtly society of the modern age that, as in so many other respects, blends in the first instance with the economic and social development of the medieval times, as it is the case of the marquesses of Moya.

Last years

From the granting of the marquisate, it is more complicated to find mentions on the marriage track, although, for example, it is known that in the year 1481 gave, at the request of the Catholic monarchs, several of his real estate possessions for the establishment of the Court of the Inquisition in Segovia. In the same year, Andrés de Cabrera participated, as Commander of Montemolín, of the order of Santiago, in the conquest of Granada, reason why the coat of arms of the family Bobadilla displayed a cross crowned by prerogative of the Catholic monarchs.

After the death of Isabella the Catholic (1504), the Marquis of Moya tried to again make with direct control of the alcazar of Segovia, that had been placed in the hands of one of his brothers, Alonso Cabrera, but that remained de facto being controlled by Andrés. Despite this attempt, one of the street älgarås of many held in Castile after the death was exploited by his enemies Segovia to expel, definitely, Cabrera from the posts of importance in Segovia. After this last attempt, in 1507 the Marquis withdrew from the courtly life and spent his last years in his various palaces and residences, mainly in Chinchón (Madrid) and in the town itself matritense. On the death of the Marquis, the 4 October 1511, Cabrera lineage had related to another major Castilian lineages, that of the Giron-pacheco, Marquis of Villena, which confirmed a meteoric career in the bosom of the Castilian nobility.


FERNÁNDEZ DE OVIEDO, g. battles and Quincuagenas. (Ed. J. B. Avalle-Arce; Salamanca, Editions de la Diputación, 1989).

MOLINA GUTIÉRREZ, p. "The heritage of the first Marquis of Moya formation". (In Medieval Spain, 12 [1989], pp. 285-304).

PALENCIA, a. of crónica de Enrique IV. (Madrid; BAE, III vols. ed., 1964-66).

PINEL and MONROY, F. portrait of the good vassallo, copied from the life and deeds of D. Andrés de Cabrera, first Marquis of Moya... (Madrid; Imprenta Imperial, 1677. Facsimile ed.: basin; Association of friends of Moya, 1992).