Archive of the Crown of Aragon

Plaça del Rei,, 08002, Barcelona
Nearest Metro
Jaume I
City District
Ciutat Vella: El Gòtic
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Archive of the Crown of Aragon
Arxiu de la Corona d'Aragó. The Archive of the Crown of Aragon, Barcelona is a state-owned historical archive and is the oldest institution of its kind in Europe.

It is part of the Spanish and European Heritage network. The Archives of the Crown of Aragon contain documents of the Counts of Barcelona and the Kings of Aragon dating from the 9th to the 18th century as well as other documents from various civil and ecclesiastic bodies.

Perhaps the most famous document is the earliest copy of the Capitulations of Santa Fe between Christopher Columbus and the Catholic Monarchs which were signed in the town Santa Fe, Granada on April 17, 1492. (The orginal document has not survived.)

The Spanish monarchs Isabella and Ferdinand granted Columbus the titles of Admiral of the Ocean Sea, the Viceroy, the Governor-General and honorific Don, and also gave him the tenth part of all riches to be obtained from his intended voyage.

The Archive of the Crown of Aragon was created  by King James the Second - Jaime II - in 1318 in the Royal Palace in the Plaza del Rey in Barcelona. 

From 1318 until 1993, the archive was located in Palau del Lloctinent part of Palau Reial Major in the gothic area of Barcelona (Royal Palace).

From 1994 it was mostly transferred to a new building on street Almogàvers, so it now has two locations: a historical one of the palace for protocol events, exhibitions and courses, and the new building for research and preservation of documents. 

The archive organises guided tours of the public areas.