Wednesday, June 25, 2014
The Carlists Red Berets
The red beret was worn as a distinguishing device by Carlist soldiers in the second Carlist War and later became an emblem of Carlists in general, often with a red or yellow pom pom or tassel (making them excellent targets in the man-to-man warfare).
Carlists (the ultra catholic and conservative right wing defenders of Carlos V) and Cristinos (defenders of Isabella II, called “Cristinos” in reference to Isabella’s mother’s name Maria Cristina) divided Spain. The Basque Country backed Carlos V. The United Kingdom, Portugal, and France helped the Cristinos.
During the Second Carlist War (1846 -1849) French txapelgorris, or “red hats”, entered the Basque Country to aid Cristinos in the area. Cristinos started wearing red berets; however, the red berets became a Carlist symbol when Zumalacárregui, Basque Carlist general and one of his most important figures, was seen and portrayed with this type of beret.
In Spain, the red beret is also seen as an emblem of the extreme right when worn in the Carlist manner, but to make it more confusing, it is also the typical headgear during the many Spanish fiestas (and carries no political significance there).
Pictured a variety of Carlist berets, made by both La Encartada and Boinas Elósegui.