Álvaro de Bazán the Elder

Álvaro de Bazán the Elder
Born 1506
Died 1558
Allegiance  Spain
Service/branch  Spanish Navy
Rank Admiral
Battles/wars Conquest of Tunis (1535)
Battle of Muros Bay
Awards General-Captain of the Galleys of Spain
General-Captain of the Ocean Sea

Don Álvaro de Bazán, called the Elder (1506–1558) was a Spanish naval commander from an old navarrese noble family who received several nobilary titles such as the rank of Admiral of Castile, Marquis del Viso, and General-Captain of the Galleys of Spain. He was the father of Álvaro de Bazán, 1st Marquis of Santa Cruz, who surpassed him in fame. At the age of eight his son was appointed "Military Governor and captain of the fortress and city of Gibraltar". His command however was via his father. It has been speculated that this unusual appointment was intended to show Charles V's confidence but Bazán the Elder did not share that confidence and he suggested to no effect that Gibraltar's Line Wall Curtain be extended to the southern tip of the rock.[1]

Bazán the Elder was also father of Alonso de Bazán, a famous sixteenth-century marine and Joan Bazán, military commander who died during the conquest the Peñón de Vélez de la Gomera. In 1549 Bazán received from Charles V the villages of Viso del Marqués and Santa Cruz de Mudela.

Important feats during his military career

Leading the ships of Biscay, Guipúzcoa and the Cuatro Villas, defeats the French navy under Admiral Burye in the Battle of Muros Bay.


  1. 1 2 Hills, George (1974). Rock of contention : a history of Gibraltar. London: Hale. pp. 105–106. ISBN 0709143524.


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