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Graphic Chronicle from the Ministry of Finance (1852 - 2007) (1852 - 2007)

Chapter: "Introduction" (accessible HTML text)

Image: Current view of the facade of the Ministry of Finance. We can observe cars passing by Alcalá Street and people walking along the pavement.

Narrator: I was born between 1761 and 1769, destined to be remembered as a great monument, or at least that is what I thought.

Image: View of the grave made in stone with inlaid bronze letters and a Latin inscription which could be freely translated as "Public Revenue Office. Carlos III ordered its building for the collection of money generated from the export of goods. Year 1769".

Image: Sabatini’s portrait. Lithograph made by Juan Sierra in the 19th century.

Narrator: Sabatini, on orders of King Charles the Third, built me. He also designed other great works, such as a part of the Royal Palace, the Alcalá Gateway, the great church of San Francis...

Image: Views of the Royal Palace, the Alcalá Gate, San Francisco El Grande.

Narrator: Bearing In mind that my position In Alcalá Street was not the most adequate... they say it’s boxed in and difficult to appreciate, I was, I can assure you, generally outshone, and ignored in many of the paintings from the period.

Image: Old photograph of the Ministry of Finance taken from the balcony of a building located in Alcalá Street, close to the Ministry.

Image: Old photograph of the Ministry of Finance building taken from the intersection of Virgen de los Peligros, Sevilla y Alcalá streets.

Image: Canvas painted by Fernando Brambila around 1830. It represents the entrance of the Madrid Royal Museum of Paintings (Real Museo de Pinturas de Madrid), currently called Prado National Museum (Museo Nacional del Prado).

Image: Canvas painted by Fernando Brambila around 1830. It represents San Vicente Gate and part of Madrid Royal Palace.

Narrator: In my youth, I housed the Madrid Customs Office and the Incomes Directorate. As the years went by, during the difficult period of the civil war, my basements were converted into the headquarters of the Defence Junta.

Image: Familiar scene in Alcalá Street towards Cibeles Square, using etching and chiselling techniques. At the left, we can see the Ministry of Finance building; horse riders, people walking around and horse carts can be observed along the streets.

Image: View of the basement of the Ministry of Finance and the photograph exhibition on the history of the Ministry of Finance building.

Narrator: My halls have hosted reunions, decorations, appointments, weddings, and many other events. Yes, I know, too many things for one building...

Image: General view of the Carlos III Hall and the ceiling of the Goya Hall.

Narrator: Before you hear my story, allow me to introduce myself, I am the Ministry of Economy, The Treasury.

Image: Current view from a distance of the Ministry of Finance building taken from Alcalá Street towards the Puerta del Sol.

-- End of introduction --

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