1901 Spanish general election

The 1901 Spanish general election was held on Sunday, 19 May and on Sunday, 2 June 1901, to elect the 10th Restoration Cortes of the Kingdom of Spain. All 402 seats in the Congress of Deputies were up for election, as well as 180 of 360 seats in the Senate.[1]

1901 Spanish general election

← 1899 19 May 1901 (Congress)
2 June 1901 (Senate)
1903 →

All 402 seats in the Congress of Deputies and 180 (of 360) seats in the Senate
202 seats needed for a majority in the Congress of Deputies
  First party Second party Third party
  Práxedes Mateo Sagasta (cropped).jpg Francisco Silvela 1905 (cropped).jpg Francisco Pi y Margall 1900 (cropped).jpg
Leader Práxedes Mateo Sagasta Francisco Silvela Francisco Pi y Margall
Party Liberal Conservative CR
Leader since 1876 1899 1901
Leader's seat Logroño Piedrahita Barcelona
Last election 104 seats[a] 226 seats[a] 13 seats
Seats won 245 84 14
Seat change Green Arrow Up Darker.svg141 Red Arrow Down.svg142 Green Arrow Up Darker.svg1

Prime Minister before election

Práxedes Mateo Sagasta

Elected Prime Minister

Práxedes Mateo Sagasta



The Spanish Constitution of 1876 enshrined Spain as a constitutional monarchy, awarding the King power to name senators and to revoke laws, as well as the title of commander-in-chief of the army. The King would also play a key role in the system of the turno pacífico (English: Peaceful Turn) by appointing and toppling governments and allowing the opposition to take power. Under this system, the Conservative and Liberal parties alternated in power by means of election rigging, which they achieved through the encasillado, using the links between the Ministry of Governance, the provincial civil governors, and the local bosses (caciques) to ensure victory and exclude minor parties from the power sharing.

Electoral systemEdit

The Spanish Cortes were envisaged as "co-legislative bodies", based on a nearly perfect bicameralism. Both the Congress of Deputies and the Senate had legislative, control and budgetary functions, sharing equal powers except for laws on contributions or public credit, where the Congress had preeminence.[2][3] Voting for the Cortes was on the basis of universal manhood suffrage, which comprised all national males over twenty-five, having at least a two-year residency in a municipality and in full enjoyment of their civil rights.[4]

For the Congress of Deputies, 92 seats were elected using a partial block voting in 26 multi-member constituencies, with the remaining 310 being elected under a one-round first-past-the-post system in single-member districts. Candidates winning a plurality in each constituency were elected. In constituencies electing eight seats or more, electors could vote for no more than three candidates less than the number of seats to be allocated; in those with more than four seats and up to eight, for no more than two less; in those with more than one seat and up to four, for no more than one less; and for one candidate in single-member districts. The Congress was entitled to one member per each 50,000 inhabitants, with each multi-member constituency being allocated a fixed number of seats: 8 for Madrid, 7 for Barcelona, 5 for Palma and Seville, 4 for Cartagena and 3 for Alicante, Almería, Badajoz, Burgos, Cádiz, Córdoba, Granada, Jaén, Jerez de la Frontera, La Coruña, Lugo, Málaga, Murcia, Oviedo, Pamplona, Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Santander, Tarragona, Valencia, Valladolid and Zaragoza. The law also provided for by-elections to fill seats vacated throughout the legislature.[2][5][6][7][8]

For the Senate, 180 seats were indirectly elected, with electors voting for delegates instead of senators. Elected delegates—equivalent in number to one-sixth of the councillors in each municipal corporation—would then vote for senators using a write-in, two-round majority voting system. The provinces of Barcelona, Madrid and Valencia were allocated four seats each, whereas each of the remaining provinces was allocated three seats, for a total of 150. The remaining 30 were allocated to a number of institutions, electing one seat each—the Archdioceses of Burgos, Granada, Santiago de Compostela, Seville, Tarragona, Toledo, Valencia, Valladolid and Zaragoza; the Royal Spanish Academy; the Royal Academies of History, Fine Arts, Sciences, Moral and Political Sciences and Medicine; the Universities of Madrid, Barcelona, Granada, Oviedo, Salamanca, Santiago, Seville, Valencia, Valladolid and Zaragoza; and the Economic Societies of Friends of the Country from Madrid, Barcelona, León, Seville and Valencia. An additional 180 seats comprised senators in their own right—the Monarch's offspring and the heir apparent once coming of age; Grandees of Spain of the first class; Captain Generals of the Army and the Navy Admiral; the Patriarch of the Indies and archbishops; as well as other high-ranking state figures—and senators for life (who were appointed by the Monarch).[9][10]

Election dateEdit

The term of each House of the Cortes—the Congress and one-half of the elective part of the Senate—expired five years from the date of their previous election, unless they were dissolved earlier. The Monarch had the prerogative to dissolve both Houses at any given time—either jointly or separately—and call a snap election.[2][5][9]


Congress of DeputiesEdit

Summary of the 19 May 1901 Congress of Deputies election results
Parties and coalitions Seats
Seats +/−
Liberal Party (Ministerials) (PL) 245 +141
Liberal Party (PL) 238 +136
Puigcerverist Liberals (L.puig) 5 +5
Basque Dynastics (Din.v) 2 ±0
Gamacist Liberals (LG) 13 –15
Independent Liberals (Lib.i) 2 +2
Total Liberals 260 +128
Liberal Conservative Party (PLC)1 84 –142
Liberal Reformist Party (PLR) 8 +4
Tetuanist Conservatives (T)1 7 –5
Total Conservatives 99 –143
Republican Coalition (CR) 14 +1
Republican Fusion (FR) 10 ±0
Centralist Republican Party (PRC) 2 +1
Federal Democratic Republican Party (PRDF) 2 ±0
Blasquist Republicans (Blasq.rep) 2 +1
Independent Republicans (Rep.i) 1 –2
Total Republicans 17 ±0
Traditionalist Communion (CT) 6 +4
Integrist Party (PI) 3 +2
Independent Catholics (Cató.i) 2 ±0
Total Carlists and Traditionalists 11 +6
Regionalist League (LR) 6 +6
National Union (UN) 2 +2
Independents (Indep) 7 +1
Total 402 ±0
Seats (parties/coalitions)
Seats (factions)


  1. ^ a b Data adjusted to account for the Basque Dynastic's alignment with the ruling coalition, alternating between the Conservatives and the Liberals from 1881 to 1914.


  • Carreras de Odriozola, Albert; Tafunell Sambola, Xavier (2005) [1989]. Estadísticas históricas de España, siglos XIX-XX (PDF) (in Spanish). Volume 1 (II ed.). Bilbao: Fundación BBVA. pp. 1072–1097. ISBN 84-96515-00-1. Archived from the original (PDF) on 24 September 2015.


  1. ^ "Royal decree declaring dissolved the Congress of Deputies and the elective part of the Senate". Royal Decree of 24 April 1901 (PDF). Gazette of Madrid (in Spanish). Retrieved 27 December 2016.
  2. ^ a b c "Spanish Constitution of 1876". Act of 30 June 1876 (PDF). Gazette of Madrid (in Spanish). Retrieved 27 December 2016.
  3. ^ "El Senado en la historia constitucional española". senado.es (in Spanish). Senate of Spain. Retrieved 26 December 2016.
  4. ^ Carreras & Tafunell 1989, pp. 1077.
  5. ^ a b "Electoral Law for Deputies to Cortes of 1890". Electoral Law of 26 June 1890 (PDF). Gazette of Madrid (in Spanish). Retrieved 27 December 2016.
  6. ^ "Electoral Law for Deputies to Cortes of 1878". Electoral Law of 28 December 1878 (PDF). Gazette of Madrid (in Spanish). Retrieved 27 December 2016.
  7. ^ "Laws approving the electoral divisions in the provinces of Seville and Barcelona". Laws of 5 July 1898 (PDF). Gazette of Madrid (in Spanish). Retrieved 25 July 2018.
  8. ^ "Law providing that they will be four the Cortes deputies elected in the electoral constituency of Cartagena". Law of 7 August 1899 (PDF). Gazette of Madrid (in Spanish). Retrieved 25 July 2018.
  9. ^ a b "Electoral Law for Senators of 1877". Electoral Law of 8 February 1877 (PDF). Gazette of Madrid (in Spanish). Retrieved 27 December 2016.
  10. ^ "Royal decree declaring dissolved the Congress of Deputies and the elective part of the Senate". Royal Decree of 16 March 1899 (PDF). Gazette of Madrid (in Spanish). Retrieved 27 December 2016.
  11. ^ "Cortes election 19 May 1901". historiaelectoral.com (in Spanish). Electoral History. Retrieved 24 September 2017.
  12. ^ "Graphs and analysis: Elections in the Revolutionary Sexennium and the Restoration 1869-1923". historiaelectoral.com (in Spanish). Electoral History. Retrieved 24 September 2017.

External linksEdit