National Day of Catalonia Date in the current year: September 11, 2024

National Day of Catalonia On September 11, Catalonia (an autonomous community in Spain) celebrates its national holiday. The National Day of Catalonia (Diada Nacional de Catalunya) was established to commemorate the Siege of Barcelona that took place during the War of Spanish Succession.

At the beginning of the war, Archduke Charles of Austria (backed by the Netherlands and Great Britain) occupied the Catalan capital of Barcelona. The Catalan Courts quickly accepted the Archduke as the new king and supported him against Philip V of Spain (backed by France).

The Franco-Spanish forces made several unsuccessful attempts to recapture the city during 1713. By July 25 of that year, the Bourbon forces surrounded Barcelona, but their attacks were unfruitful. In April-May 1714, reinforcements arrived, and the Bourbons resumed the assault.

The Franco-Spanish forces entered Barcelona on August 30 and took over the city on September 11. The defeat of Archduke Charles and the Catalans who supported him meant the end of Catalonia as an independent political entity.

The National Day of Catalonia was first celebrated in 1886. It was suppressed by Francoist Spain because Franco’s regime banned any manifestations of non-Spanish nationalism. The holiday was celebrated publicly for the first time again two years after Franco’s death. A huge demonstration took place in Barcelona on September 11, 1977. Three years later, the Generalitat de Catalunya (Catalonia’s autonomous government) reinstated the holiday officially.

On the occasion of the National Day of Catalonia, Catalan nationalists organize demonstrations and wreath-laying ceremonies at the Fossar de les Moreres, a memorial square in Barcelona where Rafael Casanova and other defenders of the city are buried. Since the early 2010s, the holiday has become more political due to Catalonia’s growing calls for independence.

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National Day of Catalonia, holidays in Catalonia, holidays in Spain, siege of Barcelona, War of Spanish Succession