Detailed Goya Chronology

  • Event

  • March 30, Francisco José de Goya y Lucientes born at Fuendetodos, 40 km southwest of Zaragoza. Fourth of six children of José Goya, a master gilder, and Gracia Lucientes, from a family of minor Aragonese aristocrats. He is born the same day that Ferdinand VI succeeded to the throne in Spain.

  • Birth of the future Carlos IV, who later employs Goya in Madrid.

  • Goya moves with his parents to Zaragoza.

  • Educated in Zaragoza at the Escsuelas Pías, possibly Martín Zapater was his childhood friend.

  • Ventura Rodriguez remodels the church of El Pilar. Carlos II becomes king. Goya studies with José Luzán y Martínez for four years, learning by copying the prints in his master’s collection.

  • Anton Raphael Mengs arrives in Madrid as Court Painter, followed in 1762 by Giovanni Battista Tiepolo and his two sons.

  • January, Francisco Bayeu called to Madrid by Mengs and establishes a studio with his brother, Rámon, in which Goya also works.

  • December, Goya enters a drawing competition, organized by the Royal Academy of San Fernando, without success.

  • Second unsuccessful participation in a competition organized by the Academy of San Fernando.

  • February, Mengs leaves Madrid to return to Italy.

  • March, Goya’s fellow court painter Giovanni Battista Tiepolo dies in Madrid, and Domenico, his son, returns to Venice. Goya travels to Italy (the exact dates and itinerary are unknown). Lives in Piazza Tomati, in Rome, home of Taddeo Kuntz and Piranesi. Notes and sketches are recorded in the Italian Notebook.

  • April, Goya enters a competition at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts, Parma, submitting a history painting, which wins an honorable prize and was praised by the judges.

  • October, commissioned to paint a fresco in a ceiling of the church of El Pilar, Aula Dei, and the Sobradiel Palace in Zaragoza.

  • Goya begins to study with the painter Francisco Bayeu y Subías, Meng’s head studio assistant.

  • Painted Self-Portrait.

  • 25 July, Marriage to María Josefa, sister of Francisco Bayeu, in the church of Santa María, Madrid.

  • Series of eleven paintings on the walls of Charterhouse of Aula Dei near Zaragoza are completed. Birth of the Virgin.

  • 29 August, Birth of first child, Antonio Juan Rámon y Carlos, in Zaragoza.

  • Goya and his family leave Zaragoza, arriving in Madrid a week later, in order to work under Mengs and Bayeu as a painter of cartoons for the Royal Tapestry Factory. He produces his first tapestry cartoons.

  • December, birth of Eusebio Ramón, Goya’s second son.

  • Begins a second series of tapestry cartoons for the dining room of the Princes of Asturias at El Pardo Palace.

  • 21 January, birth of Vicente Anastasio, Goya’s third son.

  • Painted The Parasol, a pattern from his first tapestry cartoons of 1775.

  • Begins learning the process of aquatint, an etching technique he used to etch a copy of Velázquez’s Las Meninas.

  • 9 October, birth of María del Pilar Dionisia, Goya’s first daughter. Death of Mengs in Rome.

  • May, unanimously elected to the Royal Academy of San Fernando after painting Christ Crucified. Returns to Zaragoza to decorate the cupolas in El Pilar. He completes the dome dedicated to Saint Mary, Queen of the Martyrs.

  • 22 August, birth of Francisco de Paula Hipolito Antonio Benito, Goya’s fourth son.

  • May, the building committee of El Pilar rejects Goya’s sketches for the pendentives. He completes his fresco decoration and is back in Madrid in July.

  • July, commissioned to paint one of seven altarpieces for San Francisco el Grande, Madrid.

  • 13 April, birth of Hermenegilda Francisca de Paula, Goya’s second daughter.

  • Goya resumes work for the Royal Tapestry Factory. Portrait of Prime Minister Floridablanca. Visit to the Infante don Luis, the King’s brother, at Arenas de San Pedro, where he paints a portrait of the family. The Family of Infante don Luis.

  • 6 December, inauguration for San Francisco el Grande. Goya’s success leads to further major commissions for religious paintings.

  • October, birth of the future Fernando VII, the twice King of Spain, with whom Goya later works for at court for fear of political persecution.

  • 2 December, birth of Francisco Javier Pedro de Goya, the only child to survive the artist.

  • 18 March, appointed Assistant Director to the Department of Painting at the Academy of San Fernando First commission for the future Duke and Duchess of Osuna

  • 7 August, Infante don Luis dies; Goya loses one of his main patrons.

  • 25 June, appointed Painter to the King

  • Autumn, presents sketches for tapestry cartoons for the dining room of the Prince and Princess of Asturias, completed in 1787. Paints Charles III in Hunting Dress and several other portraits for King Charles shortly before he died on December 14, 1788.

  • April, seven decorative canvases completed for the Osuna’s country house.

  • May, working on sketches for tapestry cartoons to decorate the bedchamber of the Infantas; series was abandoned due to the death of Carlos III in December. Carlos the IV nominates Goya as the court painter; Goya executes royal portraits, and works on his last series of tapestry cartoons.

  • The French Revolution starts. Goya is appointed as the Pintor de Cámara for King Charles IV. Painted Self-Portrait with Easel.

  • Rise of Godoy, who becomes Duke of Alcudia and Protector of the Academy of San Fernando.

  • 14 October, Goya’s submits his report to the Academy on the teaching of art. Falls ill in Madrid with a mysterious sickness which caused loss of vision and hearing, tinnitus, dizziness, a right-sided paralysis, weakness, and general malaise. This experience leaves Goya quite traumatized and introspective, returning to an earlier style of loose painting technique and becoming interested in more disturbing, violent, and political subject matter.

  • January, obtains official leave of absence to go to Andalusia. Continues to suffer from illness in Seville and becomes deaf. By March, he is in the care of Sebastián Martínez in Cádiz. Returns to Madrid in June.

  • 17 June, advertisement appears in the “Lost Property” section of Diario de Madrid: “Lost in the afternoon of the 5th of this month, a rectangular gold box, engraved all over and with six paintings by David Theniers [sic]. It went missing between the Convent of the Incarnation and the Prado: Anyone finding it should hand it in to Don Francisco de Goya, painter to his majesty the King, who lives in the Calle del Desengano, on the left-hand side coming from Fuencarral, No.1, flat 2, where they will be generously rewarded.”

  • 11 July, attends a meeting of the Academy in Madrid.

  • 5 January, eleven cabinet pictures, painted during Goya’s sabbatical, shown to the members of the Academy, who responded favourably; a 12th,Yard with Lunatics, is added to complete the series.

  • Paints Equestrian portrait of Godoy, and portraits of the Duke and Duchess of Alba. His brother-in-law, Francisco Bayeu, dies and Goya is appointed as Director of the Department of Painting at the Academy of San Fernando.

  • The Duke of Alba dies. Goya spends much of the year in Andalusia and visits the Duchess of Alba at Sanlúcar de Barrameda. He paints The Duchess Holding Maria de la Luz, and continues to paint several portraits of her throughout the years. While the relationship they had is still unknown, they undoubtedly had a strong sentiment for each other.Goya creates the famous Album A. Paintings for the Santa Cueva in Cadiz planned and perhaps executed.

  • Working hard on the Sueños prints and drawings that develop into Los Caprichos, published in 1799.Paints the Duchess of Alba in mourning, The Black Duchess. His Portrait of Don Bernardo de Iriarte, is shown at the Academy of San Fernando.

  • November, Godoy appoints a liberal government that includes Jovellanos, Saavedra and Meléndez Valdés.

  • March, Godoy temporarily removed from power and replaced by Saavedra.

  • 6 June, witchcraft pictures sold to the Osunas. Commission for fresco decoration of San Antonio de la Florida, Madrid.

  • 6 January, The Taking of Christ presented to the San Fernando academicians before its installation in the sacristy of Toledo Cathedral.

  • 6 February, publication of Los Caprichos announced in the Diarios de Madrid. In two days, 27 copies are sold after which Goya himself withdraws them.

  • 31 October, appointed as First Court Painter: equestrian portraits of María Luisa and the King, the Family of Carlos IV (1800)

  • Produces 10 sketches of the portrait of Charles IV’s family. Godoy commissions Goya to paint a portrait of his wife, the Countess of Chinchón. He probably paints The Nude Maja and The Clothed Maja around this time.

  • Paints the portrait of Godoy, who has become the generalissimo of the Army and the Naval Forces.

  • Duchess of Alba dies. Napoleon Bonaparte becomes life consul.

  • Goya presents the plates and 240 unsold sets of Los Caprichos to the king, who grants Javier Goya (his son) a pension.

  • 8 July, Javier Goya marries Gumersinda de Goicoechea y Galarza, daughter of Madrid merchant. Paints a portrait of Marquesa de Santa Cruz

  • 11 July, birth of Pío Mariano de Goya, Goya’s only grandson.

  • French troops in Spain. Demonstration at Aranjuez against Godoy. Carlos IV abdicates in favour of Fernando VII. Godoy is arrested.

  • April, Spanish royal family in Bayonne relinquish crown to Napoleon.The Academy of San Fernando shows a number of paintings by Goya, who is commissioned to paint a portrait of Ferdinand VII.

  • 2 May, Madrid uprising against the French followed by executions of 3 May. Start of War of Independence.

  • June–August, First siege of Zaragoza. Goya’s first visit to depict the heroic resistance.

  • The Madrid Council commissions Goya to do an allegorical painting in honor of Joseph Bonaparte, a painting which is erased and repainted many times, not only by Goya, due to political turmoil. It is now referred to as The Allegory of Madrid

  • Begins The Disasters of War series of etchings.

  • 19 March, awarded the Order of Spain by Joseph Bonaparte

  • 19 March, adoption of the Constitution of Cadiz. Goya paints a portrait of the Duke of Wellington.

  • 12 June, Goya’s wife, Josefa, dies.

  • June, final defeat of the French and flight of Joseph (José I).

  • 6 January, Council of Regency established in Madrid.

  • 24 February, Goya petitions Regency for a grant to paint the heroic scenes of The Second of May and The Third of May 1808 (Prado Museum).

  • 16 March, the Maja paintings are seized from Godoy’s collection and given to the Spanish Inquisition, which threatens to summon Goya on account of the paintings being “obscene.” He is later declared innocent on the charges of cooperation with Joseph Bonaparte’s government. Ferdinand VII abolishes the Constitution of Cádiz.Goya paints his Self-Portrait at the Age of 69.

  • October, publication of La Tauromaquia series of bullfighting aquatint etchings.

  • Begins painting the large altarpiece of Saints Justa and Rufina for the sacristy of Seville Cathedral.

  • 27 February, acquires the Quinta del Sordo (translation: Deaf Man’s Country House), a suburban property on the outskirts of Madrid on the shore of the Manzanares River.

  • 27 August, Altarpiece for the Escuelas Pías is unveiled.

  • Winter, survives a near-fatal illness, cured by his friend Dr. Arrieta.

  • November, inauguration of the Royal Prado Museum, with Goya’s equestrian portraits of Carlos IV and María Luisa.

  • Begins the Black Paintings on the walls of Quinta. Working on Disparates etchings.

  • 9 March, Fernando VII is forced to abide by the Constitution of 1812, after General Riego’s uprising.

  • French troops restore Fernando to absolute power.

  • 17 September, immediately before the liberal party is defeated in Cádiz, Goya fears persecution and transfers the Quinta del Sordo property to his grandson, Mariano.

  • 30 September, Spanish Cortes surrenders to French at Cádiz.

  • 13 November, Fernando VII enters Madrid, after the imprisonment and execution of many Liberals.

  • January–April, Goya goes into hiding in José Duaso’s home.

  • 1 May, general amnesty declared.

  • 2 May, due to the declaration of amnesty, Goya is able to petition to the king to travel to France for health reasons. Permission is granted to him on 30 May. Goya travels through Bayonne to Bordeaux, where he stays with his old friend Leandro Fernández de Moratín.

  • 30 June, arrives in Paris; paints portraits of Joaquín María Ferrer and his wife, and a Bullfight. Returns to Bordeaux, where he sets up home with Doña Leocadia Zorrilla (Weiss) and her daughter (probably his child) Maria del Rosario, along with her half-brother, Guillermo.Continues to paint, draw, and make lithographs. Executes many miniatures during the winter. Paints Woman Reading to Children

  • Publishes The Bulls of Bordeaux series of lithographs.

  • May–June, visits Madrid; his request to retire on a full pension is granted.

  • Summer, final visit to Madrid. Paints Milkmaid of Bordeaux

  • 16 April, dies at 2 am after an illness; buried in Bordeaux beside Martín Miguel de Goicoechea. Exhumed in 1901, but missing his head; his remains were transferred to Madrid and finally interred in San Antonio de la Florida in 1929.