The National Day of Catalonia (La Diada Nacional de Catalunya) commemorates the end of the Siege of Barcelona on September 11, 1714 during the War of the Spanish Succession.
Spain is Complicated
Spain is complicated. It’s a country that is still very much an association of regional nationalities with their own distinct cultures.
Catalonia is a region of northeastern Spain that includes the famous Mediterranean beaches of the Costa Brava and the eastern Pyrenees mountains. Barcelona is its capital.
Its location on the Pyrenees Mountains makes Catalonia a buffer region between Spain and France. In fact, Northern Catalonia is now French.
Catalonia is the most industrialized region in Spain so it pays a large share of Spanish taxes. Finances are part of the continuing tension between Catalan independence forces and the central authorities in Madrid.
El Clásico (the Classic) soccer game between FC Barcelona and Real Madrid plays out this political rivalry on the soccer field.
War of the Spanish Succession
The War of Spanish Succession was triggered by the death of Charles II, the last Habsburg King of Spain in 1700.
He had no children so French (Bourbon) and Austrian (Habsburg) forces fought over the Spanish Empire along with their Dutch, German, and English allies.
La Diada, the National Day of Catalonia
La Diada commemorates the fall of Barcelona to the army of the Bourbon King Philip V of Spain on September 11, 1714. It was the end of Catalan independence.
King Philip V was the grandson of French King Louis XIV. By giving up the French throne and Spanish territory in Europe, he got Spain and most of Spain’s overseas territories.