Biography of Sir John Downie (1777-1826)

Military English born in the County of Stirling (Scotland), 28 December 1777, and died in Seville, June 5, 1826.

Son of Benjamin Downie, owner Blaigorts, and Margarita Forrester, made fortune in the West Indies, but when he/she moved to England to marry suffered a mishap, and by Sir Thomas Picton Council, he/she joined the British army, serving under the command of Sir John Moore in Spain.

Since 1810 figure in the Spanish army and at the same time was British Commissioner-general. A controversial character was. He/She created the Extremadura Legion, which was named Colonel on July 22, 1810, rising to brigadier on April 10, 1812, still bachelor in Great Britain. He/She lost an eye in the taking of Seville (August 27, 1812) that was taken prisoner, but exchanged immediately by order of Wellington. Has it that his sword, which was that of Francisco Pizarro, who had been given to him by the Marchioness of conquest he/she threw the Spaniards in the puente de Triana. On 3 October 1812 publishes the editor their response to locals living in Cadiz, who had congratulated him. It is entitled in true Spanish.

Write a letter to the courts and another to the Courrier, in London, on April 20, 1813, insert both at the Universal, n. 14, January 14, 1814, the latter translated. The same newspaper published an article connected, Madrid March 8, 1814, where he/she complains about the Minister of Guerra, Juan O' Donojú, because officers of Cavalry of their body have failed to meet even their offices (Universal, n. 71, 12 March 1814). Grand Cross of Carlos III (1813).

Warden of the reales Alcazares and dockyards of Seville, between 1814 and on October 1, 1822, wrote exposure made the Lord our King (Q.D.G.) on November 12, 1814 (Seville: newspaper critic, 1814), receiving the support of the national militia and Local militia of Seville, on December 28, 1814.

Field marshal, on July 27, 1815. Author of exhibition made Augustus Congress of Spain, on the Organization of a permanent force (Seville: Vázquez and company, 1821), decidedly antiabsolutista booklet (copy handwritten on your record file General Militar de Segovia).

The arrival of the King at Seville in 1823, he/she published and distributed hundreds of copies of three proclamations, written at different times: A loyal Zaragozano, after the entry of the French in Zaragoza (1823); Madrid to Seville, at the entrance of the allies in Madrid, all of this to prepare the mutiny, which began June 1, 1823 in Seville, probably on the orders of the British Government. The third proclamation was entitled Un Sevillano matritense his compatriots Seville, and was distributed on 8 June by officers of their confidence, with barracks, streets and cafes.

Félix María Hidalgo formed the cause of "Downie and consorts", these being Colonel Ángel Briones, Lieutenant Colonel Raymond of the ORB, and the Colonel I minium, which however did not know all the details of the plan, among others. The idea was to abduct the Royal family to Gibraltar, but King did not adopt it because of the danger that was the Queen. 11 June 1823 Downie 'and spouses' had to deliver the swords, being locked in the Dungeon of the four towers, in the ratchet. The judge of first instance Tomás Varona paralyzed the proceedings, while MEPs had to March to Cadiz. Downie wrote about the manifesto theme to the Spaniards and comrades in arms (Sevilla: José Hidalgo y Cia, 1823).

Released October 1, 1823, King answered him in the Reales Alcazares. After this date followed in Seville, where was in charge of the Organization of the realistic volunteers. Grand Cross of San Fernando, the 15 December 1823, was cleansed of February 26, 1824.

Juan Caro seeks in 1824 Downie swords "and consorts", but apparently not find, causing complaints from the person concerned, October 9, 1824, under the pretext that he/she had given few rations of barley and straw. On February 3, 1825 requested, and obtained, the widow to his wife, Agnes Gibson, which was in Scotland. The death of Downie was second out of the province.There is an engraving on sheet of 42 by 30 cm., which represents you marshal, drawn in 1812 by J. Rodríguez and engraved in 1815 by T.L. Engidanos.


"Military General archive of Segovia".

Barrie, Enrique: Biography of the Spanish armies field marshal D. Juan Downie. Madrid, 1887.

COPONS and NAVIA, Francisco: The Lieutenant General of the Royal armies Don... to read the manifesto of the Lord General Sir Juan Downie. Seville, 1823.

Exhibition directed to the King... by corporations of the MN and ML of Seville in favor of D. Juan Downie. Seville, 1814.

Manifesto that it makes the public of Seville the dissolved upper Board of armament and equipment realistic volunteers from the same city. Madrid: IMP. Real, 1825.

EL SETABIENSE PÉREZ, Nicolás: I commend the Spanish armies field marshal D. Juan Downie, Alcayde of the Reales Alcazares of Seville. Seville, 1814.

General editor of Spain, 458, 477 and 765 14 n. September, 3 October 1812 and 19 July 1813,

Universal, n. 14, 71, January 14 and March 12, 1814.