Assembly of Notables

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Assembly of Notables

Assembly of Notables, Mexican council that offered the crown to Archduke Maximilian. On 16 June 1863, General Élie-Frédéric Forey ordered the establishment of a thirty-five-member Junta Suprema de Gobierno. This provisional junta appointed a three-man executive power, which consisted of Juan Nepomuceno Almonte, Mariano Salas, and Archbishop Pelagio Antonio de Labastida, and then designated the 215 members of an Assembly of Notables. The assembly met on 8-10 July in the building of the former Chamber of Deputies and included the Conservative Luis G. Cuevas, a former minister, and Pedro Escudero y Echánove, who had sat in the Constituent Congress of 1856–1857. Members tended to be moderates, though some, such as José Fernando Ramírez and Manuel Orozco y Berra, refused to participate. Rejecting both federalism and centralism, the assembly opted for "a moderated, hereditary monarchy as the form of government best suited to Mexico, with a Catholic prince" as emperor of Mexico. The assembly offered a vacant Mexican crown to Archduke Maximilian of Hapsburg. Should Maximilian decline the offer, the opinion of Napoleon III was to be sought.

The assembly was an attempt by the French, then in concert with leading Conservatives and moderates, to provide legitimacy for Maximilian's accession to the throne. The republicans, however, maintained that the Juárez administration, elected in 1861, was the legitimate government and that the assembly was illegal. Ultimately, the conservatives' association with the French occupation tarnished their political movement. Juárez gained greater legitimacy and eventually defeated the French, ushering in an era of liberal rule until the Mexican Revolution in 1910 reoriented Mexican politics.

See alsoLabastida y Dávalos, Pelagio Antonio dexml .


Cunningham, Michele. Mexico and the Foreign Policy of Napoleon III. Houndmills, U.K., and New York: Palgrave, 2001.

García Cantú, Gastón. La intervención francesa en México. México: Clío, 1998.

José, Fuentes Mares. Juárez, Los Estados Unidos y Europa (1983), pp. 358-363.

Meyer, Jean A. Yo, el francés: La intervención en primera persona: Biografías y crónicas. México: Tusquets Editores, 2002.

Rafael Tafolla Pérez. La Junta de Notables de 1863 (1977).

                                    Brian Hamnett

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Assembly of Notables

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