Spanish aristocrats row over rights of succession





For centuries Spain's senior aristocrats, the grandees, ruled in feudal glory but a recent split in their governing body reveals they can no longer run even themselves.

A faction of grandees and nobles have walked out of the Deputation of the Grandees, the body that has represented them for the past two centuries, as tempers fray over changes to the rules governing the way titles are handed down.

"There is a split. Some of the oldest families are involved," said one of their leaders, the count of Bilbao, who did not want to give names.

At the root of the rebels' decision to abandon the governing body lies a 2006 law that abolished male primogeniture. Titles must now be passed down the eldest child, regardless of sex....

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