Mojacar (Almeria)

Mojácar - History

History


Mojacar has a rich and varied cultural legacy that has left a permanent impression on the structure of the town and the character of its inhabitants.
 
The old site of the city was on a hill near the sea, located in the cradle of the Argaric Culture (2,000 BC), whose inhabitants were skilled in bronze metallurgy, and their houses were located in the walled towns.

With the decline of the Argaric Culture beginning in the Iron Age (10th to 5th centuries BC), Celts arrived from North and Central Europe. Later, the Phoenicians and Greeks also arrived who exploited the mining wealth of the Sierra Almagrera.
 
Mojacar (Almeria)
 
The city was called Murgis-Akras, Mucacra, Mosaqar and Moxacar before adopting the current name of Mojacar. The Romans began to conquer these lands at the end of the 3th century BC, the city being on the border between two Roman provinces; the Baetica and Tarraconense.

In the 5th century the invasion of the Visigoths took place, who settled in these lands until the beginning of the 8th century, when they were occupied by the Arab armies, initiating the long Muslim period which lasted until 1488.
 
Mojacar (Almeria)

For that year, all the Alcaides of the region had already surrendered before the Catholic Monarchs, except for those of Mosaqar. For that reason the Catholic Monarchs, who were in Vera, decided to send Captain Garcilaso de la Vega to meet with the Alcaide of Mosaqar, who made him see that he was as Spanish as he was, and requested that instead of being enemies, he would treat them like brothers and let them continue to till their land.

The petition was accepted, so Moors and Christians continued to live together. This historical event occurred on June 10, 1488 and is the origin of the well-known Moors and Christians Festivities.
 
In the mid-19th century a rich silver seam was discovered in the Sierra Almagrera, which enabled Mojacar and its surroundings to grow in wealth and number of inhabitants.

However, at the beginning of the Second Republic all mines were closed, which together with several severe droughts caused a wave of emigration to the north of Spain, Europe and South America. The depopulation of Mojacar was reaching very worrying proportions until the 1960s, when tourism began to reverse the trend.