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The mayor who could not read or write and lost his government because of a roulette wheel


Joan Pich i Pon went from electrician to billionaire. He was illiterate but he directed the destinies of Barcelona and his crazy phrases would be enough to write a book.

Joan Pich i Pon was born in Barcelona in 1878.

With little luck.

His family was poor and

he could not go to school

, from a very young age he had to work as an electrician to bring some coins to his house and at the age of 12 he left home.

But Joan had

something against and something for.

In addition to being illiterate, he was supremely ignorant.

She didn't know how to read or write

but she had a

brilliant brain for business.

He was an ace for transactions and over the years, he went from being an electrician to being a powerful businessman in the electricity sector, owner of several newspapers and

one of the biggest millionaires in Barcelona.

Joan Pich i Pon, the illiterate mayor of Barcelona.

And Joan was interested in politics.

He changed sides like clothes.

Monarchist, then right wing, republican.

Everything was fine for him.

Thanks to his chameleonic behavior, he held various positions: alderman, provincial deputy, president of the Chamber of Urban Property, undersecretary of the Navy until he became

mayor of Barcelona and general governor of Catalonia.

His historical phrases

Few explain how

an illiterate man

came to direct the destiny of the richest city in Spain.

He had a method

: his secretary read the speeches to him several times and memorized them from beginning to end.

Then, with the sheets in hand, he pretended to read and repeat what was memorized.

No one suspected that he did not know how to read.

And he went down in history for his nonsense.

Historical phrases that in his time were called (taking his last name)



One of Pich i Pon's diaries.

Let's rescue some of the most famous:

Upon assuming the position of mayor of Barcelona: "The ideal would be to follow the policy of

the three E's:

administration, administration and administration".

Who was going to explain to him that administration

did not begin with the letter m but with the a.

When visiting the famous Ciutadella Park when he was president of the parks and gardens commission, he was asked to buy gondolas, and he replied: “Yes, but not one, but two: a male and a female


Let them reproduce."

Taking a photo with a sword in hand, he said: "I feel like

a Roman radiator


Gladiators would laugh at his grave.

Pich i Pon did not know how to write.

In a meeting he said: "For me, the greatest tyrant in history was not Nero or Caligula, but

Tyrant of Bergerac


“On the Rambla de Catalunya they opened a restaurant with

genital light

” (it was close, it is overhead light, the one that comes from the ceiling).


I am a supporter of homosexuality

, that is, that men and women can love each other and leave each other when they see fit."

Exquisite centurion eggs

” (sturgeons can swim safely).

His sign.

A doodle without letters.

On a visit by King Alfonso XIII to Barcelona, ​​while they were looking at the city from the height of the Tibidabo mountain, he said to him: “Your Majesty: here is

the great udder

at your feet ” (by city).

When wanting to say that a business charged exorbitant prices, he launched the phrase:

"A face's egg"

(instead of an eye for the face).

could write a book

With his phrases you could write a book and one wonders how long will Netflix wait to make a series about him?

Meanwhile, let's rescue other phrases of his.

He defended the idea that Europeans should live in their own land: “the French, in France, the English, in England, the Murcians, in Murcia and

the Belgians, in Belgrade


Another of Pich i Pon's diaries.

"I know that on


(side by side).

"I like the bullfighters who

are in the candelabra

" (candlestick).

Swim in the ambulance

” (abundance).

When speaking of the neutrality of Barcelona during the First World War, he opined: “neither allies nor Germanophiles because in this common enterprise we

are all hermaphrodites


Pich i Pon (first row, center), the day of his resignation.

Hearing the Marseillaise sing, he said:

"The hairs on my heart stand on end."

When he introduced a member of his family, a famous philately fan, to society, he said: “And here is my nephew,

who is syphilitic


The black market rulreta that led him to his political ruin.

Tas a visit to Rome: "I was impressed

by the Roman linings

" (the forums).


(by constituency) in Barcelona is the best."

Pich i Pon with the control of Barcelona in his hands.

When inaugurating one of his newspapers, he said: "We, the journalists,

have come to provide a vacuum

to Barcelona."

"I have to stop a bit and

dedicate myself to a sedimentary life

" (for sedentary).

his sad end

Pich i Pon was a leader who helped make Barcelona great.

Montjuïc is almost one of his works, as well as the illumination of the city (especially in the L'Eixample area), like several train stations, the first traffic light, the 1929 International Exposition and so many other works, because he had a fixed idea:

"I want Barcelona to be a little Paris"


The house of the Pich i Pon family.

It was designed by the famous architect Josep Puig i Cadafalch and is at number 9 in the central Plaza de Catalunya in Barcelona.

But his ignorance went hand in hand with his avidity for business and in 1935 he was forced to


as undersecretary of the Ministry of the Navy, as mayor of Barcelona and as president of the Generalitat due to a major scandal of his time.

It was the future installation in the city of

a curious roulette

called black market.

In addition to being curious, it had a peculiarity:

by pressing a button, the ball would fall where the casino chose.

In 1936, at the beginning of the Civil War,

he went into exile in Paris

where he died of grief a year later.

He is buried in a

wonderful vault in the Montjuïc cemetery

in Barcelona.

Joan Pich i Pon is buried in this wonderful vault in the Montjuïc cemetery, in Barcelona.

And for those who pass through Barcelona, ​​I advise you to admire what was

the house of the Pich y Pon family


It was designed by the famous architect Josep Puig i Cadafalch and is at number 9 in the central Plaza de Catalunya.

Now it is a center with various businesses.

The sad but logical end.

Something so beautiful ruined by trade.

But right at the thought of Pich i Pon, who said:

"I don't know how to write but I do know how to make money".

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Source: clarin

All news articles on 2023-03-26

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