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Calatayud

Calatayud

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Calatayud is a city and municipality
Municipality
A municipality is essentially an urban administrative division having corporate status and usually powers of self-government. It can also be used to mean the governing body of a municipality. A municipality is a general-purpose administrative subdivision, as opposed to a special-purpose district...

 in the province of Zaragoza
Zaragoza (province)
Zaragoza is a province of northern Spain, in the central part of the autonomous community of Aragon.Its capital is Zaragoza, which is also the capital of the autonomous community. Other towns in Zaragoza include Calatayud, Borja, La Almunia de Doña Godina, Ejea de los Caballeros and Tarazona.Its...

 in Aragón
Aragon
Aragon is a modern autonomous community in Spain, coextensive with the medieval Kingdom of Aragon. Located in northeastern Spain, the Aragonese autonomous community comprises three provinces : Huesca, Zaragoza, and Teruel. Its capital is Zaragoza...

, Spain
Spain
Spain , officially the Kingdom of Spain languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Spain's official name is as follows:;;;;;;), is a country and member state of the European Union located in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula...

 lying on the river Jalón
Jalón (river)
The river Jalón is located in the northeast of Spain, and is one of the principal tributaries of the Ebro. It has a length of and drains a watershed of . The flow rate in Calatayud is , but is highly irregular due to the great range of Mediterranean rainfall patterns.The course of the river forms...

, in the midst of the Sistema Ibérico
Sistema Ibérico
The Sistema Ibérico or Iberian System is one of the main systems of mountain ranges in Spain.It is a vast and complex system of mountain chains and massifs located in the central regions of the Iberian Peninsula, but reaching almost the Mediterranean coast in the Land of Valencia in the east.From...

 mountain range. It is the second-largest city in the province after the capital, Zaragoza
Zaragoza
Zaragoza , also called Saragossa in English, is the capital city of the Zaragoza Province and of the autonomous community of Aragon, Spain...

, and the largest town in Aragón other than the three provincial capitals. It is the seat of the comarca of Comunidad de Calatayud.

The city has the title "Muy noble, leal, siempre augusta y fidelísima ciudad de Calatayud". (Translated to mean: "The very noble, loyal, always august and most faithful city of Calatayud".) Calatayud became the first democratic municipality in 1977, because elections were held one day before all the rest of Spain
Spain
Spain , officially the Kingdom of Spain languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Spain's official name is as follows:;;;;;;), is a country and member state of the European Union located in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula...

, to prepare for a visit by King Juan Carlos I.

Highways and railways


The town is located by the Carretera Nacional N-II highway, the Autovía A-2
Autovía A-2
The Autovía A-2 is a Spanish autovía and autopista route which starts in Madrid and ends in Barcelona. It replaces the former N-II.- Sections :- Major cities crossed:*Madrid*Guadalajara*Zaragoza*Fraga*Lleida...

 and the N-234, among other local roads.

The AVE
AVE
Alta Velocidad Española is a service of high-speed rail in Spain operated by Renfe, the Spanish national railway company, at speeds of up to . The name is literally translated from Spanish as "Spanish High Speed", but also a play on the word , meaning "bird".AVE trains run on a network of...

 Madrid–Barcelona high-speed rail line line , as well as the RENFE
RENFE
Renfe Operadora is the state-owned company which operates freight and passenger trains on the 1668-mm "Iberian gauge" and 1435-mm "European gauge" networks of the Spanish national railway infrastructure company ADIF .- History :The name RENFE is derived from that of the former Spanish National...

 line from Madrid
Madrid
Madrid is the capital and largest city of Spain. The population of the city is roughly 3.3 million and the entire population of the Madrid metropolitan area is calculated to be 6.271 million. It is the third largest city in the European Union, after London and Berlin, and its metropolitan...

 to Barcelona
Barcelona
Barcelona is the second largest city in Spain after Madrid, and the capital of Catalonia, with a population of 1,621,537 within its administrative limits on a land area of...

 stop in Calatayud.

History


The city was founded on the site of a Celt-Iberian settlement by the Romans with the name Augusta Bilbilis
Augusta Bilbilis
Augusta Bilbilis was a city founded by the Romans in the province of Hispania Tarraconensis. It was the birthplace of Martial c. 40 AD...

and was the birthplace of the poet Martial
Martial
Marcus Valerius Martialis , was a Latin poet from Hispania best known for his twelve books of Epigrams, published in Rome between AD 86 and 103, during the reigns of the emperors Domitian, Nerva and Trajan...

 in 40 CE. The site of the ruins of Augusta Bilbilis are approximately four kilometers to the north of the modern city of Calatayud. The modern town was founded by the Moors
Moors
The description Moors has referred to several historic and modern populations of the Maghreb region who are predominately of Berber and Arab descent. They came to conquer and rule the Iberian Peninsula for nearly 800 years. At that time they were Muslim, although earlier the people had followed...

 around the Ayyub castle, circa 716 CE.

The name Calatayud came from the Arabic Qalat 'Ayyūb = "Ayyub's fort". The ancient inhabitants of Bilbilis moved to the new site. Occupying a strategic placement between the central meseta
Meseta
Meseta may refer to:*Meseta Central , the high plains of central Spain*Meseta , partially collapsed volcanic vent of Volcán de Fuego in Guatemala*Meseta, fictional currency of the Phantasy Star video game series...

 of Spain and the Ebro
Ebro
The Ebro or Ebre is one of the most important rivers in the Iberian Peninsula. It is the biggest river by discharge volume in Spain.The Ebro flows through the following cities:*Reinosa in Cantabria.*Miranda de Ebro in Castile and León....

 valley the city retained its importance in succeeding centuries. By the eleventh century a substantial Jewish community
Jewish community of Calatayud
Calatayud in Spain had a large Jewish community as early as the reign of Abd al-Rahman III. In 1882, while workmen were digging the foundation of a house, they discovered a marble tombstone bearing a Hebrew inscription in memory of a certain Samuel b. Solomon, who died Marheshwan 11, 4680...

 was present, surviving the reconquista
Reconquista
The Reconquista was a period of almost 800 years in the Middle Ages during which several Christian kingdoms succeeded in retaking the Muslim-controlled areas of the Iberian Peninsula broadly known as Al-Andalus...

 until the expulsion of the Jews from Spain in 1492. The city was re-conquered from the Muslims by Alfonso I of Aragón in 1119. Many surviving examples of mudéjar
Mudéjar
Mudéjar is the name given to individual Moors or Muslims of Al-Andalus who remained in Iberia after the Christian Reconquista but were not converted to Christianity...

 church architecture show that the Moorish influence lived on.

During the Peninsular War
Peninsular War
The Peninsular War was a war between France and the allied powers of Spain, the United Kingdom, and Portugal for control of the Iberian Peninsula during the Napoleonic Wars. The war began when French and Spanish armies crossed Spain and invaded Portugal in 1807. Then, in 1808, France turned on its...

s a notable siege of French occupied Calatayud led to its capture by guerillas in 1811. The city was the capital of its own province
Province of Calatayud
The Province of Calatayud was a province of Spain created in the 1822 territorial division of Spain , during the Trienio Liberal of 1820–1823...

 in 1822–23, during the Trieno Liberal.

Main sights



One of the most notable Mudéjar
Mudéjar
Mudéjar is the name given to individual Moors or Muslims of Al-Andalus who remained in Iberia after the Christian Reconquista but were not converted to Christianity...

 towers of Aragón is the 15th century bell tower of the collegiate church of Santa María, which was built on the site of a mosque. The Muslim fortress is the biggest and oldest of the Muslim fortresses of the Iberian peninsula. The church of "San Pedro" was founded by Ferdinand II of Aragón
Ferdinand II of Aragon
Ferdinand the Catholic was King of Aragon , Sicily , Naples , Valencia, Sardinia, and Navarre, Count of Barcelona, jure uxoris King of Castile and then regent of that country also from 1508 to his death, in the name of...

  and it was there that the first Cortes (Parliament) of Aragon was held in 1411.

Quarters and villages

  • Quarters: Huérmeda, Torres and Embid de la Ribera
  • Villages: Campiel, Carramolina, Marivella, Ribota, San Ramón and Terrer

Fiestas

  • Easter
    Easter
    Easter is the central feast in the Christian liturgical year. According to the Canonical gospels, Jesus rose from the dead on the third day after his crucifixion. His resurrection is celebrated on Easter Day or Easter Sunday...

  • Pilgrimage (romerio) in honour of el Cristo de Ribota, May 1
  • Saint Íñigo's Day, June 1
  • Saint Roch's Day, August 14–16
  • Virgen de la Peña, September 8–12

See also

  • Calatayud (DO)
    Calatayud (DO)
    ‎Calatayud is a Spanish Denominación de Origen for wines located in the southwestern corner of the province of Zaragoza about 90 km from Zaragoza and covers over 5,600 ha, extending over 46 different municipalities, including Calatayud itself...

  • Mudéjar
    Mudéjar
    Mudéjar is the name given to individual Moors or Muslims of Al-Andalus who remained in Iberia after the Christian Reconquista but were not converted to Christianity...

  • Comunidad de Calatayud
    Comunidad de Calatayud
    The Comunidad de Calatayud is one of the comarcas of Aragon, Spain. It is one twelve comarcas of the province of Zaragoza in Aragón. The administrative headquarters are in the city of Calatayud. Local wine achieved Denominación de Origen status in 1990 and it is the second largest wine producing...