Blogs in this series

Life in Culebrón is a disconnected series of pieces about the banal and ordinary of everyday life in an inland Alicante village seen from my very British perspective.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Moors and Christians

Lots of towns in the Valencian Community and particularly here in Alicante Province celebrate Moros y Cristianos. The events vary in lots of details but usually bands of townsfolk, belonging to one or other group, parade through the streets dressed as either Moors or Christians followed by a band that bangs out a very drum based music. It's all to celebrate either the heritage left behind by the Moors or the final victory over the Moors by the Christians. Take your ideaological stance.

Remember the Arabs, or Moors, invaded Spain in 711AD but got stopped just inside France at the battle of Tours by Charles Martel in 732. From then on, slowly but surely, the Christians pushed the Arabs back until they finally lost Granada, their last stronghold, in 1492. That's the same year the Spaniards paid for Columbus's expedition to the the "New World". So there were Arabs in Spain for a long time and there were lots of temporary frontiers between the two sides. One of those temporary frontiers ran very close to where we live and, hence, the plethora of Moors and Christians events here. We went over to Elda today to see the parade.

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