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The Treaty of Bayonne and its Impact on the History of Zaragoza

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The Historical Context

In the year 1462, 562 years ago, in Zaragoza, during the Catalan Civil War (1462-1472) and the Remensa Revolution (1462-1485), King Juan II of Catalonia and Aragon ratified a treaty that had previously been agreed upon by representatives of the chancelleries of Barcelona and Paris in the Basque-French town of Bayonne.

The Treaty and its Consequences

This treaty implied the commitment of King Louis XI of France to provide military support to John II to quell the rebellion of the Catalan aristocracy. The military aid had a cost of 200,000 gold escudos, with an interest of 33%, which totaled a debt of 300,000 gold escudos, equivalent to 900 million euros today.

As a guarantee of payment, John II ceded sovereignty and temporary revenues over the counties of Roussillon and Cerdanya to Louis XI. Despite the French occupation of these regions, the local population rebelled, generating a prolonged conflict that considerably weakened the occupation troops.

The alliance between John II and the Remensas resulted in the defeat of the Catalan landowning aristocracy, marking the beginning of the end of the feudal regime in Catalonia, being the first European country to begin this process.

The Historical Legacy

Despite the victory, John II never settled the debt to France, and the French occupation of Roussillon and Cerdanya lasted until the Treaty of Barcelona in 1493, when his son and successor, Ferdinand II, agreed to the return of these counties to Catalonia. .

However, Ferdinand II breached this pact by occupying and expelling Louis XII of France from Naples in 1504, evidencing the complex historical and political implications derived from the Treaty of Bayonne.

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