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Don Miguel Ricardo de Alava (1771-1843), Spanish ambassador
Sitter in 1 portrait
Alava had a unique distinction: he fought at both the battles of Trafalgar (1805) and Waterloo (1815), and because Spain changed allegiance, he fought on different sides. He was Wellington's Spanish liaison officer in the Peninsular War, and became a firm friend. He served as his country's ambassador to London in the 1830s. Wellington's regard for him was obvious in the way he introduced the Spaniard to the employees at Coutts' bank: 'This is my friend, and as long as I have any money at your house, let him have it to any amount that he thinks proper to draw for.'