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    Section 1 – These Articles of Association are intended as an integration, reformation and continuation of the Foundation Deed of the Italian Heraldic Council, drawn up on the 18th November 1948 by the Notary, Adolfo Baldioli in Turin and of the Deeds of Significance sent in December 1993 to the Home Minister and the Minister for Education. The registered office is in Padova, Via Trieste 26; the registered office may be transferred elsewhere by simple decree issued by the National President of the Italian Heraldic Council – Marquis Vittorio Spreti Institute.

    Section 2 – Hereinafter the Association shall be called: “Italian Heraldic Council – Marquis Vittorio Spreti Institute”. The term for the Association is unlimited.

    Section 3 – The Association is non-political, non-profit making and has the following purpose:

a) To assist in the diffusion, knowledge and practice of social studies, historic-heraldic-genealogical and etymological studies, sphragistic and numismatic studies, with special attention paid to protecting the historic-nobiliary and bourgeois values both nationally and internationally; to supply suitable technical-historic-heraldic and nobiliary consultation to boards, institutes, private persons and companies for the correct creation of any product and/or service, to anyone wishing to give support to and/or has bearing on heraldic science, with special attention paid to: historiography, chronology, palaeography, diplomacy, sphragistics, numismatics, archive research, iconology, iconography, heraldic philately, axiography, patrology, onomatology, erinnofilia, epigraphy, symbology, history of clothing, traditions and customs, reconstruction of family trees, research for coats of arms, ancient handwriting surveys, consultation for granting and/or recognising coats of arms, noble titles and predicates, paperwork for admission to Knightly Orders, reorganising archives;

b) Through the Association’s experts, control heraldic and nobiliary concessions, confirm and renewal titles, establish the legitimacy of family trees; perform historic-heraldic-genealogical researches, publish extra-judicial surveys relative to the above matters, the history and rights of all the Knightly Orders, proving their authenticity;

c) To register the Italian and foreign noble families and, considering the fact that the Italian Constitution does not recognise noble titles except as part of the name, whereby granted prior to 28th October 1922, arrange for publishing the predicates of all those families who benefited in Europe of the privilege that was conferred them by reigning or previously reigning dynasties, which have been recognised as such by decrees issued by the relative magistracy;

d) To publish and republish, directly and indirectly, books of special heraldic interest relative to the history of the knighthoods, noble families, ordinary and bourgeois families holding coats of arms, on the understanding they have been recognised or assigned by the Italian Heraldic Academy, an Institute with which the Italian Heraldic Council signed a reciprocal recognition and cooperation document in 1994;

e) To express technical-heraldic opinions and organise the registration of noble predicates granted prior to 1922 on the birth certificates of the persons concerned; research in national, municipal, private, parish, capitolare and diocesan archives, in libraries, museums and wherever else may be required to ensure the accuracy of the research, with the aim of enriching the historic archives of the Italian Heraldic Council – Marquis Vittorio Spreti Institute;

f) To call conferences, seminars, and conventions and to organise training and study courses, to promote and maintain relationships with national and international bodies with similar purpose, cooperate with Universities, high level cultural Institutes and Associations and research centres wherever they are located.

    Section 4 – The assets are formed of:

a) Property and chattels that become the property of the Association;

b) Any reserve funds that are formed with the excess funds in the balance sheet;

c) Any disbursements, donations and legacies.

The Association’s revenue is formed of:

a) Any profit arising from events or participation in events;

b) Any other revenue that increases the company assets. The financial period shall close on the 31st December of each year. Within 60 days after closing, the final balance sheet for the period and the forecast for the next period shall be prepared by the Board.

    Section 5 – Members are distinguished by: Members of the Academic Founders Senate, who sign this deed, also called 1st class councillors; Members of the Academic Promoters Senate, also called 2nd class councillors (the 1st and 2nd class councillors have the right to vote and are part of the Academic Senate, the Administrative Board of the Association).
Besides these two categories, the only ones with the right to vote, the following categories of members shall also be formed: Effective Members, also called Auditors, Honorary Members, Correspondent Members and Supporter Members. These Members may become part of the Academic Senate Board with consultation functions, upon discreet request by the Senate.

a) The Promoter Members of the Academic Senate (2nd Class Councillors) are all those who, further to the admission deed, shall be thus appointed by the Academic Senate with the unanimous vote of all its members;

b) The Effective Auditor Members are all those who take an active part in the Italian Heraldic Council or who, after their admission, are called upon to be part of the Heraldic Tribunal, an internal board of the Italian Heraldic Council – Marquis Vittorio Spreti Institute; these Members have only the right to a consulting vote:

c) The Honorary Members are all those who are selected among the highly worthy persons in historic-heraldic-nobiliary studies and those who, in any field, honour their country in a particularly distinguished manner;

d) The Correspondent Members are all those who are selected among the persons who cultivate historic-heraldic-nobiliary studies, genealogists, palaeographers and connoisseurs of similar sciences;

e) The Supporter Members are all those who, with legacies, donations and disbursements, finance the Association and its aims; these Members have the right to a consulting vote.

    Section 6 – To become Members of the Italian Heraldic Council-Marquis Vittorio Spreti Institute, applicants must present a written admission request to the Academic Senate, enclosing:

- a) Birth certificate; b) Marriage certificate (if married); c) Residency certificate; e) Academic qualifications; e) Extract certificate from the Criminal Records Office; f) curriculum vitae, giving any decorations in Knightly Orders and/or for merit, dynastic or papal decorations, received personally, by parents or other ancestors.

Membership is lost further to: a) death; b) resignation; c) cancellation and expulsion motivated by serious breaches of the articles of association and regulations. Any Member may resign from the Association, and the resignation shall become effective from the moment it is accepted by the Academic Senate, which may hold acceptance in abeyance until such time as the resigning member shall have settled any amounts due to the Association, returning all funds and properties belonging to the Association, and waiving all rights to use the name of the Italian Heraldic Council-Marquis Vittorio Spreti Institute and any symbols or coats of arms relative to the Institute.

    Section 7 – The Italian Heraldic Council and its internal Organs, including the Marquis Vittorio Spreti Institute and the Heraldic Tribunal, is administered by an Academic Senate formed exclusively of 1st class Founder Council Members, formed of a minimum of five and a maximum of fifteen members, elected for an office of ten years, and who may be re-elected. The 1st Class Founder Council Members have perpetual mandate. In the event of retirement or death of a Member Councillor, the President of the Italian Heraldic Council-Marquis Vittorio Spreti Institute, who chairs the Academic Senate, shall make urgent arrangements to substitute said person, requesting confirmation in the subsequent round of voting.

    Section 8 – The Academic Senate appoints from among its Members:

- The President of the Italian Heraldic Council-Marquis Vittorio Spreti Institute, with life office, who issues and revokes at his unquestionable opinion, the mandates relative to the organisation and government of the Association Organs;

- The President of the Italian Heraldic Council-Marquis Vittorio Spreti Institute is invested with fullest powers for the ordinary and extraordinary management of the same, without any limitations and the substantive and legal representation of the Association with third parties;

- A Vice President with mandate issued by the President for the organisation of the Marquis Vittorio Spreti Institute, who shall also hold the office of Curator;

- A General Registrar who shall also hold the position of General Treasurer;

- A Vice President with mandate issued by the President for the organisation of the Heraldic Tribunal, who shall also hold the office of Censor;

- A General Referendary;

All said persons shall remain in office for 10 (ten) years.

    Section 9 – The title of High Patron may be granted to Heads of State; of Honorary President to Princes of Blood, to Heads of Government, to Cardinals of the Holy Roman Church, and Honorary Member of the Academic Senate to persons of high rank for special reasons and exceptional acts of merit towards the Italian Heraldic Council-Marquis Vittorio Spreti Institute.
The President of the Italian Heraldic Council-Marquis Vittorio Spreti Institute has the faculty to award a merit medal to those Members who have performed special services through their studies, publications or other exceptional reasons.
The Medal is gold and on one side shows the crowned eagle with the wording around it “Heraldic Council-Marquis Vittorio Spreti Institute” and on the back: “A.D. 1948” (the year that the Italian Heraldic Council was founded) with the name of the worthy Member engraved below with the year of bestowment. The same medal may also be bestowed in exceptional cases to persons who have reached clear and undisputed fame in their historic, genealogical, heraldic and knightly studies.

    Section 10 – The Marquis Vittorio Spreti Institute, created in memory of the most expert heraldist of this century, is under the jurisdiction of the Italian Heraldic Council, as established under the terms of this deed, and shares the aims and purposes of the same, assuming and accepting all the sections given therein, approving the moral qualities and professionalism of the Council as established therein. The new Institute, which hereinafter is associated to the Italian Heraldic Council, desired and authorised by the direct heirs of Marquis Vittorio Spreti and, for them, by the representative and living progenitor of this ancient dynasty, Marquis Arardo Maria Spreti, will be responsible for updating and supplementing the “Italian Historic-Nobiliary Encyclopaedia”, work of Marquis Vittorio Spreti, guaranteeing the correct use of the publication. It shall also be responsible for preparing and publishing the Grand Armorial with the list of the noble families who request inclusion therein. In concert with the Organs of the Italian Heraldic Council, the Marquis Vittorio Spreti Institute shall contribute to the national historic-heraldic-knightly culture and the rebirth of those traditions that were the pride of their ancestors, except for those prerogatives reserved to the President of the Italian Heraldic Council established at section 8 of these Articles of Association.

    Section 11 – The Heraldic Tribunal shall have the tasks of:

a) Implementing disciplinary actions, such as verbal warnings, written warnings and expulsion of those Members who lack respect towards the Academic Senate of the Italian Heraldic Council-Marquis Vittorio Spreti Institute or its Members, or who for lack of dignity and morals are no longer worthy of the Association;

b) Offer genealogical consultation and surveys for authenticity or otherwise to prove noble titles, after controlling family trees, lineage and frameworks, to confirm or otherwise the legitimacy of the same, ascertaining the noble rights and prerogatives of those who have requested, eventually including the applicants and their families in the Grand Armorial; except for those prerogatives reserved to the President of the Italian Heraldic Council established at section 8 of these Articles of Association.

    Section 12 – The Academic Senate meets every time the President deems fit or whenever a request shall be made by half of its Members and, in any event, at least once a year to discuss and approve the balance sheet and forecasts. For the resolutions to be valid, the majority of members shall be effectively present, and in the event of parity, the vote of the Chairman of the meeting shall prevail. The Academic Senate is chaired by the President of the Italian Heraldic Council, by the most senior Vice President in the event the President is unable, and by the most senior member in the event the Vice President is unable. The minutes of the meetings of the Academic Senate shall be recorded in a special register, which shall be signed by the Chairman and the Registrar.

    Section 13 – The Academic Senate shall prepare the General Regulations for the successful organisation of the Italian Heraldic Council and its internal organs, including the Marquis Vittorio Spreti Institute and the Heraldic Tribunal; these regulations shall be periodically updated further to the sole discretion of the Academic Senate.

    Section 14 – Upon their admission, Members of any category explicitly accept the Articles of Association and General Regulations of the Italian Heraldic Council-Marquis Vittorio Spreti Institute in all the various sections.
For all their relationships with the Association and any internal controversies that may arise, they undertake not to refer to any other Authority than those established by these Articles of Association.
Failure to observe the regulations given herein shall involve taking disciplinary measures, which, in the event of particularly serious offences, could involve expulsion from the Association.

    Section 15 – Any controversies that may arise between Members and between Members and the Italian Heraldic Council-Marquis Vittorio Spreti Institute, both marginally and centrally to the Association, shall be exclusively resolved by a Board of three Arbitrators appointed from time to time, one appointed by each of the parties in the suit and one by the President of the Italian Heraldic Council-Marquis Vittorio Spreti Institute. In the event the Italian Heraldic Council-Marquis Vittorio Spreti Institute is one of the parties to the suit, the Arbitrator will be appointed by the President of the Law Society Council with the Court of Padova; the three Arbitrators shall judge ex bono et aequo without any formal procedures and their decision shall be final.

    Section 16 – The Italian Heraldic Council-Marquis Vittorio Spreti Institute may open representation offices wherever it may be deemed opportune, both in Italy and abroad, and may employ personnel which may be necessary for successful development and operations of the Institute.

    Section 17 – All the Members of any category, who are resident in the geopolitical regions of Italy, shall elect a Regional Delegate from among their members and the 20 (twenty) elected Regional Delegates shall then elect in turn from among their members 5 (five) Delegates who shall represent all the categories of Members of the Italian Heraldic Council-Marquis Vittorio Spreti Institute in the Delegation of the Academic Senate, which is called once a year. The Delegation of the Academic Senate, formed of the Founding Council Members and Promoters and the five elected Delegates, has the following powers of approval under the terms of section 5 herein:

a) For appointing the three scrutinisers for each meeting in which votes must be taken;

b) For approving the balance sheet and forecasts, deciding on the report of the work performed and the moral and management report;

c) For electing a Board of three Auditors, in the event said Board has not been elected in the Memorandum of Association, said Board shall remain in office for one year;

d) For winding up the Italian Heraldic Council-Marquis Vittorio Spreti Institute, which shall be decided further to hearing the opinions of all the categories of Members, with absolute majority vote, thereby appointing one or more liquidators and assigning the assets.

    Section 18 – For any other matter not expressly established in these Articles of association, referral is made to the regulations governing associations in the Italian Civil Code.

(The signatures are thereby placed)

Made in Padova on 19th April 1995.

(Public Deeds of the Italian Republic,
Rep. 2780 Rac. 245 no.3582 of 2nd May 1995)