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La marcha real

The Spanish National Anthem


Spain has long been one of the countries with no lyrics for its national anthem, known as La marcha real ("The Royal March"), but that could change soon. Spain's national Olympics committee held a contest in 2007 to come up with suitable lyrics, and the words below are those penned by the winner, a 52-year-old unemployed resident of Madrid, Paulino Cubero. Unfortunately for the Olympics committee, the lyrics immediately became the subject or criticism and even ridicule by political and cultural leaders. Within a few days of the lyrics becoming known it became clear that they would never be endorsed by the Spanish parliament, so the Olympics panel said it would withdraw the proposed lyrics. They were criticized, among other things, for being banal and too resminiscent of the Franco regime.

Here are the proposed and withdrawn lyrics:

La marcha real
¡Viva España!
Cantemos todos juntos
con distinta voz
y un solo corazón.
¡Viva España!
Desde los verdes valles
al inmenso mar,
un himno de hermandad.
Ama a la Patria
pues sabe abrazar,
bajo su cielo azul,
pueblos en libertad.
Gloria a los hijos
que a la Historia dan
justicia y grandeza
democracia y paz.

English translation:

The Royal March
Long live Spain!
Let us all sing together
with a distinctive voice
and one heart.
Long live Spain!
From the green valleys
to the immense sea
a hymn of brotherhood.
Love the fatherland
for it knows to embrace,
under its blue sky,
peoples in freedom.
Glory to the sons and daughters
who give to History
justice and greatness,
democracy and peace.

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