Is Andorra a Country? Andorra on Europe Map 1993

Where is Andorra Country?

Andorra is a small country located in southwestern Europe, between Spain and France. This mountain nation is famous for its low taxes and lush nature. The capital of Andorra is Andorra la Vella, a small city known as the commercial and tourist center of the country. This modern city is a popular destination for skiing, trekking and outdoor sports.

  • Religion Percentage in Andorra

List of religious populations percentage in Andorra

Andorra language

Catalan, known in the Valencian Community and Carche as Valencian, is a Western Romance language. It is the official language of Andorra, and an official language of three autonomous communities in eastern Spain.

The Exact Location of Andorra

Andorra Country: Andorra is located in the Pyrenees between the Western Valleys of Catalonia, Spain, and the Southern French Plains. The country comprises 468 square km of mountains and valleys, covered with forests of firs, oaks, chestnut trees and cycads; as well as its extensive pastures. It is surrounded entirely by the Pyrenees. The country has a total area of 468 km2, with an extension of 65.5 km from the north to the south.

Andorra on Europe map

Andorra Europe map
Andorra Europe map
  • Is Andorra a country? Does it belong to Spain?

Is Andorra a country?  Yes, Andorra is a country, and it does not belong to Catalonia and it does not belong to Spain either. The territory of Andorra is governed by a parliamentary co-principality, whose representation is divided into the so-called co-princes of Andorra, who act as heads of state. These are the bishop of Urgell and the president of France, and similarly to Spain, they reign but do not govern and their functions are basically reduced to those of representativeness in the foreign relations of the country.

The Bishopric of Urgell is a diocese of the Roman Catholic Church, subordinate to the Archdiocese of Tarragona. Therefore Andorra is not from Spain and is not part of that country either. That is why it is such a confessional state and where religion is so unfounded. Thus, the Principality of Andorra constitutes an independent state, which forms a jurisdiction of law and democratic based on the Constitution of 1993, the country’s constitution. The Head of Government is the President of the Government and is the one who proposes the laws to the General Council of Andorra.

1933 was a year of political and social tensions. The court of Les Corts dismisses the Consell, the permanent delegates of the co-princes call elections and grant the right to vote to all Andorran men over 25 years of age.

Given the need for political restructuring that awakened during the 70s, in 1982 the first government of Andorra was established as an executive body.

With the Constitution, ratified on 14 March 1993, Andorra became a democratic and social State governed by the rule of law, under a regime of parliamentary co-principality. This new status opens the doors to the consolidation of Andorra’s international presence.

Andorra was admitted to the United Nations as a full member in July 1993 and subsequently to other international bodies such as the Council of Europe, UNESCO, WHO and OSCE. In the same vein, Andorra has already established diplomatic relations with 72 countries and has presented its credentials to several countries and organizations, with 13 diplomatic representations so far.

Prehistory of Andorra

The Balma de la Margineda, found by archaeologists in Sant Julià de Lòria, was established in 9,500 BC as a place of passage between the two sides of the Pyrenees. The seasonal camp was perfectly located for hunting and fishing by the hunter-gatherer groups of Ariege and Segre.

During the Neolithic, a group of people moved to the Madriu Valley (today the Natural Park located in Escaldes-Engordany, declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO) as a permanent camp in 6640 BC. The population of the valley cultivated cereals, raised domestic cattle and developed a trade with people from the Segre and Occitanie.

Other archaeological deposits include the Tombs of Segudet (Ordino) and Feixa del Moro (Sant Julia de Loria), both dated to 4900–4300 BC as an example of Urn culture in Andorra. The model of small settlements began to evolve into complex urbanism during the Bronze Age. Iron metallurgical elements, ancient coins and replicas can be found in the ancient sanctuaries scattered throughout the country.

The sanctuary of the Roc de les Bruixes (Stone of the Witches) is perhaps the most important archaeological complex of this time in Andorra, located in the parish of Canillo, about funeral rituals, ancient writings and engraved stone murals.

Iberian and Roman Andorra History Timeline

The inhabitants of the valleys were traditionally associated with the Iberians and historically located in Andorra as the Iberian tribe Andosins or Andosini (Ἀνδοσίνους) during the seventh and second centuries BC. Influenced by the Aquitaine, Basque and Iberian languages, the locals developed some current place names. The first writings and documents related to this group of people date back to the second century BC. C. by the Greek writer Polybius in his Histories during the Punic Wars.

Some of the most significant remains of this period are the Castle of Roc d’Enclar (part of the early Hispanic March), l’Anxiu in Les Escaldes and Roc de L’Oral in Encamp. The presence of Roman influence is recorded from the second century BC. C. until the fifth century AD. The places with the greatest Roman presence are in Camp Vermell (Red Field) in Sant Julia de Loria, and in some places of Encamp, as well as in the Roc d’Enclar. People continued to trade, mainly in wine and cereals, with the Roman cities of Urgellet (today La Seu d’Urgell) and throughout Segre via the Via Romana Strata Ceretana (also known as Strata Confluetana).

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A principality ruled by two co-princes

The institution of Cotrincipity

On 8 September 1278, a paréage was signed by the Spanish Archbishop of Urgell and the Count of Foix. This treaty refers to a feudal right of association between two or more lords, ensuring them equal rights and joint ownership of the same land. The two signatories thus become the first co-princes in the history of Andorra. They divide sovereignty among themselves, organize a tax system and establish judicial rules. A unique concept, this system of government remained unchanged until the 20the century.

Shortly after the signing of the first pareage, the Count of Foix, thanks to some gaps in the text, built a castle on Puy Sant Vincenç, site allowing him to monitor the activities of the bishop … and therefore a source of opposition between the two lords. In order to avoid new conflicts, a second paréage was signed, on December 6, 1288, between Pere d’Urg and Roger Bernat III. The second paréage provided that neither lord could build a castle or fortress without mutual consent, and granted the two lords the right to appoint a notary respectively.

Andorra in XVI to XVIII centuries

In 1601 the Tribunal de Corts (High Court of Justice) was created as a result of the Huguenot rebellions in France, the Inquisition courts coming from Spain and the indigenous witchcraft experienced in the country due to the Reformation and the Counter-Reformation. With the passage of time, the co-title of Andorra passed to the kings of Navarre.

After Henry III of Navarre became King of France, he issued an edict in 1607 establishing the French head of state and the Bishop of Urgell as co-princes of Andorra. During 1617, the communal councils formed the organism (popular militia or army) to face the emergence of banditry (brigade) and the Consell de la Terra was defined and structured in terms of its composition, organization and current competences.

Andorra continued with the same economic system that it had during the twelfth and fourteenth centuries with a large production of metallurgy (fargues, a system similar to Catalan Farga) and with the introduction of tobacco around 1692 and import trade. The Andorra la Vella fair was ratified by the co-princes in 1371 and 1448, being the most commercially important annual national festival since then.

The country had a unique and experienced weavers’ guild, Confraria de Paraires i Teixidors, located in Escaldes-Engordany, founded in 1604 taking advantage of the hot springs of the area. At this time, the country was characterized by the social system of prohoms (rich society) and casalers (rest of the population with less economic acquisition), derived from the tradition of pubilla and hereu.

Three centuries after its foundation, the Consell de la Terra located its headquarters and the Court of Corts in the Casa de la Vall in 1702. The manor house built in 1580 served as a noble fortress of the Busquets family. Inside the parliament was placed the Cabinet of the six keys (Armari de les sis claus) representative of each Andorran parish and where the Andorran constitution and other documents and laws were later kept.

In both the War of the Reapers and the War of the Spanish Succession, the Andorran people (although professing to be a neutral country) supported the Catalans who saw their rights reduced in 1716. The reaction was the promotion of Catalan writings in Andorra, with cultural works such as the Book of Privileges (Llibre de Privilegis of 1674), Manual Digest (1748) by Antoni Fiter i Rossell or Polità andorrà (1763) by Antoni Puig.

XIX century: The New Reform And The Andorran Question

After the French Revolution in 1809, Napoleon I re-established the Co-Principality and eliminated the French medieval tithe. In 1812-1813, the First French Empire annexed Catalonia during the Peninsular War (Peninsular War) and divided the region into four departments, with Andorra as part of the district of Puigcerdà. In 1814, an imperial decree restored Andorra’s independence and economy.

During this period, Andorra’s late medieval institutions and rural culture remained virtually unchanged. In 1866, the syndic Guillem d’Areny-Plandolit led the reformist group in a General Council of 24 members elected by suffrage limited to heads of households. The General Council replaced the aristocratic oligarchy that previously ruled the state.

The New Reform (Nova Reforma) began after the ratification of both Co-Presidents and established the basis of the constitution and symbols, such as the tricolour flag, of Andorra. A new service economy emerged as a demand from the inhabitants of the valley and began to build infrastructure such as hotels, spas, roads and telegraph lines.

The co-princes’ authorities banned casinos and bookmakers throughout the country. The ban resulted in an economic conflict for the Andorran people. The conflict led to the so-called revolution of 1881, when revolutionaries stormed the syndic’s house on December 8, 1880 and established the Provisional Revolutionary Council led by Joan Pla i Calvo and Pere Baró i Mas. The Provisional Revolutionary Council allowed the construction of casinos and spas by foreign companies.

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From June 7 to 9, 1881, the loyalists of Canillo and Encamp reconquered the parishes of Ordino and La Massana establishing contact with the revolutionary forces in Escaldes-Engordany. After a day of fighting, the Treaty of Escalls Bridge was signed on June 10. The Council was replaced and new elections were held. The economic situation worsened, as the population was divided over the Qüestió d’Andorra – the “Andorra Question” in relation to the Eastern Question). Struggles continued between bishops, pro-French and nationalists based on the problems of Canillo in 1882 and 1885.

Andorra participated in the cultural movement of the Catalan Renaixença. Between 1882 and 1887, the first academic schools were formed where trilingualism coexisted with the official language, Catalan. Romantic authors from France and Spain reported on the awakening of the country’s national consciousness. Jacint Verdaguer lived in Ordino during the 1880s, where he wrote and shared works related to the Renaixença with the writer and photographer, Joaquim de Riba.

In 1848, Fromental Halévy had premiered the opera Le Val d’Andorre with great success in Europe, where the national consciousness of the valleys was exposed in the romantic work during the Peninsular War.

XX and XXI Century: Modernization of the country and Constitutional Andorra

Andorra declared war on imperial Germany during World War I, but did not participate directly in the fighting. Some Andorrans volunteered to participate in the conflict as part of the French Legions. It remained in an official state of belligerence until 1958, as it was not included in the Treaty of Versailles.

In 1933, France occupied Andorra after the social unrest that occurred before the elections due to the 1933 Revolution and the FHASA strikes (Vagues de FHASA); The revolt led by Joves Andorrans (a trade union group related to the Spanish CNT and FAI) called for political reforms, the universal suffrage vote of all Andorrans and acted in defense of the rights of local and foreign workers during the construction of FHASA’s hydroelectric power. station in Encamp. On April 5, 1933, Andorran Joves seized the Andorran Parliament. These actions were preceded by the arrival of Colonel René-Jules Baulard with 50 gendarmes and the mobilization of 200 local militias or someone led by Síndic Francesc Cairat.

On July 6, 1934, the adventurer and nobleman Boris Skossyreff, with his promise of freedoms and modernization of the country and wealth through the establishment of a tax haven and foreign investments, received the support of the members of the General Council to proclaim himself sovereign of Andorra On July 8, 1934, Boris issued a proclamation in Urgell, declaring Boris I, King of Andorra, simultaneously declaring war on the Bishop of Urgell and approving the King’s constitution on July 10. He was arrested by co-prince and bishop Justí Guitart i Vilardebó and his authorities on July 20 and was eventually expelled from Spain.

From 1936 to 1940, a French military detachment of Garde Mobile led by the well-known colonel René-Jules Baulard was garrisoned in Andorra to secure the principality against the interruption of the Spanish Civil War and Francoist Spain and also faces the rise of republicanism in the wake of the consequences. of the 1933 revolution. During the Spanish Civil War, the inhabitants of Andorra welcomed refugees from both sides, and many of them settled permanently in the country, thus contributing to Andorra’s subsequent economic boom and entry into the capitalist era. Franco’s troops arrived at the Andorran border in the last stages of the war.

During World War II, Andorra remained neutral and was an important smuggling route between Vichy France and Francoist Spain. In the course of the war, the population, living between two states that had declared themselves to be openly fascist, criticized the passivity of the General Council in the face of the impediment of entry and expulsion of foreigners or refugees, crimes for economic interests, the reduction of citizens’ rights and being too close or sympathetic to Francoism. The General Council itself justified its political and diplomatic actions under the survival and protection of the sovereignty of Andorra, which finally emerged unscathed from the two conflicts.

Therefore, certain groups organized to help victims of Nazi oppression coming from Europe, while participating in smuggling to help the country survive. Among the most prominent groups was the Command of the Evasion Network of the Hostal Palanques, in contact with the British Mi6, which helped almost 400 fugitives, among whom there were also allied military personnel. They remained active between 1941 and 1944, with some struggles with pro-Axis informants and Gestapo agents within the country.

In the capital there was a smuggling network of propaganda, culture and cinematographic art not prone to totalitarian regimes, promulgated in some places such as the Hotel Mirador or the Casino Hotel, as a meeting place for people of ideologies close to the Andorrans and Spaniards. Republicanism and Free France. The network was maintained after the war, when film societies were formed, where censored films, music and books were imported into Franco’s Spain, thus becoming an attraction against censorship for Catalan or foreign audiences, even within Andorra. The Andorran Group (Agrupament Andorrà), an anti-fascist organization linked to the French resistance of Occitanie, accused the French representative (veguer) of collaborating with Nazism.

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The Andorran opening to the capitalist economy resulted in two axes: mass tourism and the country’s tax exemption. The first steps towards the capitalist boom date back to the 1930s, with the construction of FHASA and the creation of professional banking with Banc Agrícol (1930) and Crèdit Andorrà (1949), then with Banca Mora (1952), Banca Cassany (1958) and Sobanca (1960). Soon after, andorra for skiing, activities such as skiing and shopping become a tourist attraction, with the opening of ski resorts and cultural entities in the late 1930s. Overall, a renewed hotel industry has developed. A social health insurance system (CASS) was created in April 1968.

The Andorran government necessarily involved planning, projecting and forecasting for the future: with the official visit of French co-prince Charles de Gaulle in 1967 and 1969, it received approval of the economic boom and national demands within the framework of human rights and international openness.

Andorrian lived an era commonly known as the “Andorran dream” (in relation to the American dream) along with the Trente Glorieuses: mass culture rooted the country experiencing radical changes in economy and culture. The proof of this event was Ràdio Andorra, the number one transmitting music radio station in Europe in this period, with guests and speakers of great importance promoting musical hits of Chanson française, Swing, Rhythm & blues, Jazz, Rock & roll or American country music. So much so that Andorra achieved a GDP per capita and a life expectancy higher than that of the most standard countries of the current economy.

Given its relative isolation, Andorra has existed outside the mainstream of European history, with few ties to countries other than France, Spain and Portugal. However, in recent times, its thriving tourism industry along with advances in transportation and communications have brought the country out of its isolation. Since 1976, the country sees the need to reform Andorran institutions due to anachronisms in the field of sovereignty, human rights and balance of powers, as well as the need to adapt legislation to modern demands.

In 1982 there was a first separation of powers when the Government of Andorra was instituted, under the name of the Executive Board (Consell Executiu), chaired by the first Prime Minister Ribscar Ribas Reig with the approval of the Co-Presidents. In 1989, the Principality signed an agreement with the European Economic Community to regularize trade relations.

Its political system was modernized in 1993 after the Andorran constitutional referendum, when the constitution was drafted by the co-princes and the General Council and approved on March 14 by 74.2% of voters, with a turnout of 76%. The first elections under the new constitution were held later in the year. The same year, Andorra became a member of the United Nations and the Council of Europe.

Andorra formalized diplomatic relations with the United States in 1996 by participating in the 51st UN General Assembly, a very important event in view of the normalization to which the country aspired. The first Syndic General Marc Forné participated in a speech in Catalan at the General Assembly to defend the reform of the organization, and after three days Forné participated in the parliamentary assembly of the Council of Europe to defend the linguistic rights and economy of Andorra. . In mid-2006, the monetary agreement with the European Union was formalized, allowing Andorra to use the euro officially, as well as mint its own euro currency.

The 20the century sees the birth of a true rule of law

Andorra The turbulent interwar period

1933 was a year marked by many political and social tensions in the history of Andorra. Early elections grant the right to vote to all Andorran men over the age of 25. The need for political restructuring of Andorra is felt in the 70s. As an executive body, the first government was established in 1982.

1993, recognition of the Principality

Andorra became a democratic and social state governed by the rule of law with the Constitution ratified on 14 March 1993. A system of parliamentary co-principality is instituted. This new status consolidates the country’s international recognition.

Andorra was then admitted to the UN as a full member in July 1993 and subsequently recognized by other international bodies such as:

  • the Council of Europe,
  • WHO
  • OSCE.

The current Constitution is the one established in 1993. It enshrines the status of principality in the country.

Culture and Fashion of Andorra

The culture of country can also be found in the calendar of traditional expressions and seasonal events. In the first case, Fallas and Fallaires stand out, which is a festival declared by UNESCO as intangible heritage of humanity, which is celebrated on the summer solstice. And he put on a spectacular shooting show. In the second part, we will perform concerts, theme festivals, dramas and other performances that go beyond the limits of leisure and culture and provide suggestions for users of all ages. Andorra la fitness


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