THE ‘father of Andalucia’ and a son of Casares, Blas Infante is as much a part of the region as the vultures and eagles soaring above it.

The writer and politician was born and schooled in the little village of Casares, where he is now immortalised in a small museum in the very house in which he entered the world in 1885.

He is most famous for sowing the seed of Andalucian nationalism, designing the flag, composing the anthem and fighting non-stop for the region’s ‘self governing statute’.

He wrote a book titled the ‘Andalucian ideal’ and delivered Andalucia’s first ever Assembly in nearby Ronda in 1918.

He was also elected council representative for the district of Gaucin-Casares-Estepona in 1918, a year before he married Angustias Garcia Pradas, with whom he had three daughters and a son.

In 1936, after the February elections, the Andalucian campaign intensified and Blas Infante was proclaimed President of the new assembly.

However, his political ideals did not sit well with the fascist Franco regime and in August that year, as civil war broke out, he was arrested at his house in Sevilla and locked away in an old cinema.

Tragically, nine days later, without trial or sentence, he and two others were driven away and then shot dead at the side of the main road to Carmona.

As his body crumpled to the ground, he is believed to have roared: “Long live free Andalucia!”Andalucia

Nowadays, his memory is honoured in Casares with the placing of flowers at the base of his statue every year in Plaza de Espana.

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