|Parent house House of Toledo
House of Silva
House of Fitz-James Stuart|
Titles Duke of Alba Duke of Huéscar
Founder Gutierre III Alvarez de Toledo
Current head Carlos Fitz-James Stuart, 19th Duke of Alba
The House of Alba de Tormes (Spanish: Casa de Alba) is a prominent Spanish aristocratic family, descended from the 12th century Mozarab nobility of post-conquest Toledo. Their claim to Alba dates to 1429, when the first Álvarez de Toledo was made the Lord of the City of Alba de Tormes.
In 1567, the second Duke of Alba signed the capitulation of the city of Granada.
During the 17th century, Don Fernando Álvarez de Toledo y Pimentel, 4rd Duke of Alba, was given the title of governor general of the Spanish Netherlands. The third duke's first cousin was Doña Eleonor de Toledo, who married Cosimo I de' Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany. By her granddaughter Marie de' Medici, Queen of France, she became the ancestor of many crowned heads and heirs apparent of Europe. Her descendants include Juan Carlos I of Spain, Henri, Grand Duke of Luxembourg and Prince William, Duke of Cambridge.
In 1802 María Cayetana de Silva, 13th Duchess of Alba, died without any issue and her titles were inherited by a relative, Carlos Miguel Fitz-James Stuart, 14th Duke of Alba. Thus, the dukedom of Alba passed to the senior branch of the House of FitzJames, which took over the patrimony of the House of Alba.
Until 20 November 2014, Cayetana Fitz-James Stuart, 18th Duchess of Alba was the head of the House of Alba. She held the Guinness Book of Records title for the largest number of noble titles with 57 titles.
The current head of the House of Alba is Carlos Fitz-James Stuart, 19th Duke of Alba who succeeded his mother on 20 November 2014. The family owns a collection of art, furniture and historic documents, mainly at the Liria Palace in Madrid.