2017-06-02 08:21:21 UTC
I have just seen a new paper addressing the male-line ancestry of El Cid, Rodrigo Díaz de Vivar. He was maternal grandfather of king García Ramírez of Navarre, in turn the great-grandfather of Fernando III, and via his daughter Eleanor of Castile, the ancestor of all of the English kings from Edward II.
He was a minor nobleman, and his ancestry is recorded in a genealogy found in the Historia Roderici, which dates from not long after his death. It shows a dual descent from a legendary Castilian 'judge', Laín Calvo. He is given two sons, Fernando Laínez and Bermudo Laínez, these being parents of Laín Fernández and Rodrigo Bermúdez. Laín Fernández is given a son Nuño Laínez, who married his second-cousin-once-removed, Eilo Fernández, daughter of Fernando Rodríguez and granddaughter of Rodrigo Bermúdez.
Nuño Laínez and Eilo Fernández are given a son, Laín Núñez, father of Diego Laínez, who was father of Rodrigo Díaz, El Cid. Of these, historians such as Menéndez-Pidal had identified very few records, one for El Cid's father, and oone for his grandfather, the others being entirely unknown.
This changed when Margarita Torres-Sevilla noticed a correspondence between the generations of this pedigree and the line of the well-known Flaínez family, one of the premier families in Castile. While the name forms are different, she saw an identity in the two descents. As a reminder, El Cid's male lineage runs:
Laín - Fernando - Laín - Nuño - Laín - Diego - Rodrigo
The Flaínez line runs:
(Fernando ?)- Flaín- Munio- Flaín
She thus hypothesized that, while his own father was somewhat obscure, El Cid was grandson of a great nobleman, Flaín Muñoz. (Note that this Flaín Muñoz was grandfather of Diego Fernández, identified with El Cid's father-in-law.)
The paper I just got hold of is from Castilian historian Gonzalo Martínez Diez, and was published in 2007, but they have a 10-year paywall so it just became available online today. Basically, he dismisses the hypothesis of Margarita Torres-Sevilla. Specifically, he raises the issue that we talked about at an early time here, the distinct character of the names Nuño and Munio. While these names are thought to share a common origin, the interpretation of them as distinct names has changed over time. For much of the previous centuries, they were thought to be variations of the same name, but there grew a realization that the two names were actually distinct (with examples being cited of brothers named Nuño and Munio). This was not as straightforward as it could have been, because scribal error or lack of a recognition of the distinction could cause the names to be exchanged. The Torres-Sevilla reconstruction would require a historical Munio Flaínez to be the same as the Historia's Nuño Laínez.
Martínez Diez concludes that the names were truly distinct, and at least at the time were rarely if ever confused. Every refernce that survives of Munio Flaínez shows him under this name, never Nuño. He goes through other Munios and again sees them always as Munio, with only extremely rare exceptions. Further, he notes that Munio Flainez's documented wife is the well-known Froiloba Bermúdez de Cea, (aunt of the Queen of Pamplona), while the Historia gives Nuño Lainez the wife Eilo Fernández. Finally, he points out that the children of Flaín Muñoz seem to eb well documented, and there is no Diego among them, as the Torres-Sevilla reconstruction would require.
He concludes, then, that the seeming similarity between El Cid's Laínez ancestry and the Flaínez pedigree is coincidental.
Though he only mentions him in passing, there is another case where the distinction between Nuño and Munio has been minimized is in the Sánchez de Mora reconstruction of the Lara origins. The earliest known Lara is Gonzalo Núñez de Lara. The currently preferred reconstruction would make him son of a Munio González, which again would seemingly violate this rule.
Martínez Diez clearly thinks this man was Gonzalo Núñez, and hence he could not be Muñoz. This would trow a spanner in the wheel.