Find and document your family affiliations with the nobility.


Find and document your family affiliations with the nobility.


We carry out a preliminary evaluation of your order at no cost, we prepare a work project and provide a budget adjusted to the evaluation.

Once the research is concluded, we shall provide you with a written report, genograms, and the corresponding documentary back-ups with the transcriptions that are required or, in other cases, transcription and interpretation of titles, privileges, lawsuits of hidalguía or any other documentation associated with the investigation on nobility.

If there is little to define here about the high nobility in the Ancien Régime, given the attention that historians have paid to this subject, as evinced in multiple publications, it is however convenient to give a brief account of the different categories of Spanish low nobility, that is: the untitled nobility known as hidalgos, since there are few studies on this social phenomenon that is quite complex in itself, due to its heterogeneity both social and regional, and about which there is some confusion outside the academic arena.

It should be noted, at the outset, that the singularity of the nobility was its condition as a privileged social group. Apart from the distinctive hierarchy of titled nobility, both high and low nobility shared similar privileges, the most important of which were the exemption from income taxes and council levies, as well as having an exclusive justice system that prevented imprisonment for debts, confiscation of property, being subjected to torture, hanging or sent to the galleys. Moreover, they benefited from the positions in the councils that were reserved for their social order.


From the fifteenth century onward, the benefits of hidalguía led to a legal network that had to accredit the condition of hidalgo, whether the reason was to move to another locality, for which demonstration of an unwritten nobility quality was required, or for specific interests of social ascent. Then, the claimants to a recognition of hidalguía filed a lawsuit in the royal courts. The appropriate courts to deal with these issues were, in Castile, the Royal Chancery of Valladolid and the Royal Chancery of Granada in the South; in Navarre, the Royal Council and the Royal Court; and in Aragon, the Justice and the Royal Audience. The lawsuits that won were recognized in the final sentence in the form of the royal Executoria de Hidalguía.


Executoria de hidalguía in favor of Bartolomé de Cabrera Salcedo, resident of Constantina, issued by the Royal Chancery of Granada on July 27th, 1699 (ES 41003 AHPS 3.1.1. CELOMAR Collection, 19924P).

Executoria de hidalguía, 1655, December, 7th. Valladolid / Excutoria de hidalguía of blood in general possession won at the request of Don Juan and Don Antonio de Plasencia, brothers living in Roa. / RMR Collection Collection Sig. Blq.I-Pl5-nº1


Hidalgos de executoria. Any category that had to conduct a lawsuit for its nobility and obtained the Executoria. In a certain hierarchical context of nobility, they were considered second-class compared to the hidalgos of blood.

Hidalgos de privilegio. Those who, being commoners, obtained this noble quality by royal concession, generally as a reward or recognition of services rendered to the Crown. The grant was issued in the letters of mercy or royal privileges of nobility. From the third generation of successors they acquired the following categories:

Hidalgos de sangre (of blood). Those who had to demonstrate in their lawsuits the nobility of their predecessors, compulsorily, in three previous generations.

Hidalgos solariegos or hijosdalgos. Notables of well-known plots. They were the ones who could prove their belonging to a House or noble lineage publicly recognized from a distant past.

Hidalgos de gotera or de canales adentro. Those who only had their condition recognized in the place where they lived, because they had not been able to demonstrate nobility in the three preceding generations that were required. Outside their local boundaries they lost their status and, therefore, their privileges.

Hidalgos de bragueta. Those who fathered seven consecutive sons within legitimate marriage. Despised by the hidalgosof blood, they ranked the lowest in the hierarchy of the low nobility order.

There were other categories based on privileges enjoyed in fact that implied positive proof of nobility, such as the hidalgos de devengar quinientos sueldos, the hidalgos por el cuerno or, in another section, the group of hidalgos of privilege by purchase. The term hijodalgo was the usual one in Castile and Navarre, whereas in the Kingdom of Aragon was that of infanzón. In Catalonia and Valencia other names were given to the hidalgos such as, among others, generosos, donceles, hombres de paratge, etc.