The historical origins of the PNV can be traced back to the end of the nineteenth century, when Sabino Arana Goiri founded in Bilbao the first Euskeldun Batzokije, an association of Basque men which aimed to preserve and promote the historically acquired rights of the Basque people, the old fueros (a set of laws which embodied the autonomy of the region from the Kingdom of Spain and which had finally been abolished in 1876), and which preceded the formation of the first PNV organisation, the Bizkai Buru Batzar. The PNV, the first and most enduring organisational form of nationalism in the Basque country, drew heavily on the

early ideas of Arana, the unquestioned founding father of the main ideological strand of Basque nationalist thought.