Category Archives: Basque Fact of the Week

Basque Fact of the Week: Catalina de Erauso, the Lieutenant Nun

Back in the 16th century, there weren’t many options for the children of Basque families. Those that weren’t destined to take over the family baserri were often left with little choice but to join the military or a religious order. The situation was even starker for women. Catalina Erauso y Pérez de Galarraga was born […]

Basque Fact of the Week: Legal to Kill Basques in Iceland

As part of their ever-expanding quest to find fish and whales, the Basques ventured further and further west across the Atlantic. Of course, they are well known to have established settlements in Newfoundland, where they had oil processing plants to process the whale blubber into oil. However, things didn’t always turn out so great everywhere […]

Basque Fact of the Week: The Sanctuary of Arantzazu

The Sanctuary of Arantzazu is nestled in the mountains just outside of the city of Oñati, famous itself for the University of Oñati, one of the oldest buildings in Iberia. Arantzazu is known for its uncharacteristic and distinctly modern look, “one of the most avant-garde religious buildings in the world“. The spires are covered in […]

Basque Fact of the Week: Joaquin Murrieta, the Inspiration for Zorro

The US West is literally littered with Basque names. Basques came directly to herd sheep, but they also came earlier as part of the Spanish Conquest. One part of the conquistador legacy is the surnames that abound not only in the US but in other parts of the Americas. Murrieta, a name that possibly means […]

Basque Fact of the Week: Seroras, the Women Caretakers of the Church

It is often said that the Basque people came to Christianity relatively late as compared to their neighbors in the rest of Europe. When they did, however, they did so with fervor and Catholicism is the dominant religion of the region. While only fragments of the pre-Catholic religion remain, they find their way into the […]

Basque Fact of the Week: Former MLB All-Star, Andy Etchebarren, Dies at Age 76

Andy Etchebarren was an All-Star catcher for the Baltimore Orioles, a fixture in their line-up from 1965-1975. While his offensive stats were not overly impressive, he was known for his toughness and his defensive skills. He appeared in four World Series, with his team winning twice. Etchebarren had the distinction of being the last player […]