Companys, Lluís (lyōēsˈ kŏmpäˈnēs) [key], 1883–1940, Spanish politician; Catalan nationalist leader. In 1933 he was elected president of autonomous Catalonia to succeed Francesc Macià. Pressed by extremists, in 1934 he declared Catalonia fully independent within the Spanish republic, but this separatist revolt failed and Companys was jailed. The leftist electoral victory of 1936 brought him back to power, and he headed the Catalan government throughout the civil war. In 1939 he fled to France, but German occupation forces returned him to Spain in 1940, and he was executed.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.