Alcañiz

Alcañiz (Spanish pronunciation: [alkaˈɲiθ]) is a town and municipality of Teruel province in the autonomous community of Aragon, Spain. The town is located on the banks of the river Guadalope. Alcañiz is the unofficial capital of the Lower Aragon historical region. It lies some 113 km from Teruel, the provincial capital, and 92 km from Zaragoza, the capital of Aragon.

Alcañiz
Ex Colegiata de Santa María La Mayor
Plaza de España, Lonja y Ayuntamiento
Castillo de los Calatravos y Parador Nacional
Torre del Homenaje del Castillo de los Calatravos
Vista panorámica de Alcañiz
Flag of Alcañiz
Flag
Official seal of Alcañiz
Seal
Alcañiz is located in Aragon
Alcañiz
Alcañiz
Location of Alcañiz within Aragon
Alcañiz is located in Spain
Alcañiz
Alcañiz
Location of Alcañiz withinSpain
Coordinates: 41°3′4″N 0°8′1″W / 41.05111°N 0.13361°W / 41.05111; -0.13361Coordinates: 41°3′4″N 0°8′1″W / 41.05111°N 0.13361°W / 41.05111; -0.13361
Country Spain
Autonomous community Aragon
ProvinceTeruel
ComarcaBajo Aragón
Judicial districtAlcañiz
Government
 • Mayor
(2019– )
Ignacio Urquizu Sancho (PSOE-Aragón)
Area
 • Total472.12 km2 (182.29 sq mi)
Elevation
340 m (1,120 ft)
Population
 (2019)[1]
 • Total15 947
Demonym(s)Alcañizano
Time zoneUTC+1 (CET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+2 (CEST)
Postal code
44600
Websitealcaniz.es
Plaza de España

Alcañiz is the capital of the Bajo Aragón comarca and the second city in the province after Teruel.

HistoryEdit

The current settlement of Alcañiz dates to the Islamic era in Spain. It was captured by the Christian troops of Alfonso I of Aragon in 1119, but was later taken back by the Moors. It was conquered again by count Ramon Berenguer IV of Barcelona in 1157, and again lost, until it was finally recaptured by his son Alfonso II of Aragon. In 1179 the latter gave the town to the military Order of Calatrava.

On 23 May 1809 during the Peninsular War, the Battle of Alcañiz was fought between a Spanish force led by General Blake and French troops commanded by General Suchet. During French occupation Suchet made an administrative territorial division of Aragon by which Alcañiz became the capital of the province of Alcañiz. This short-lived province briefly unified the Lower Aragon historical region.[2] Alcañiz, however was bypassed in the 1833 territorial division of Spain and later attempts to create an Alcañiz Province were not successful.

Formerly there was a railway line between Alcañiz and Tortosa, offering a new gateway to the sea for Aragon through this town. Construction work began in 1891, but it was haphazard and the first trains between Alcañiz and Tortosa began only in 1942. The last stretch between Tortosa and Sant Carles de la Ràpita was never completed before the line was terminated by RENFE in 1973.[3]

Jewish historyEdit

In 1380, a few Jewish families, scattered in the surroundings of the town, joined to community, which was under the jurisdiction of the Order of Calatrava. During the massacres of 1391, the Jewish community in town was protected. Alcañiz was the hometown of Joshua Lorki, a converted Jew who initiated the religious Disputation of Tortosa between Christian and Jewish scholars.[4] A law was forced on the town Jewish community, imposing a fine on any Jew who wished to move out of the city. Most of the town Jews eventually converted to Christianity, before or during the Spanish Inquisition in 1492.[5]

DemographyEdit

The population in Alcañiz is 15 939 people in 2018

Demographic evolution
1857 1860 1877 1897 1900 1910 1920 1930 1940 1950 1960 1970 1981 1991 2001 2011 2019
7,522 7,619 7,327 7,433 7,699 8,397 8,596 8,961 8,691 9,812 10,166 10,851 11,639 12,820 13,431 16,402 15,947

Geography and climateEdit

Alcañiz has a semi-arid climate (Köppen: BSk) with moderately cool winters with some rain to hot, mostly dry summers with little rain and thunderstorms. Heavy rains happen in spring and autumn, especially during May, October and November. There is approximately 1 snowy day every year. Some years have no snowfall while others have a few days of snow. Heavy snow is unknown.[6]

Climate data for Alcañiz, Teruel. 340 metres (1,120 ft) above sea level
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 12
(54)
14
(57)
17
(63)
19
(66)
24
(75)
29
(84)
32
(90)
32
(90)
27
(81)
22
(72)
16
(61)
13
(55)
21
(71)
Daily mean °C (°F) 7.5
(45.5)
8.5
(47.3)
11.0
(51.8)
13.0
(55.4)
17.5
(63.5)
22.0
(71.6)
24.5
(76.1)
25.0
(77.0)
21.0
(69.8)
17.0
(62.6)
11.5
(52.7)
8.5
(47.3)
15.6
(60.1)
Average low °C (°F) 3
(37)
4
(39)
5
(41)
7
(45)
11
(52)
15
(59)
17
(63)
18
(64)
15
(59)
12
(54)
7
(45)
4
(39)
10
(50)
Average precipitation mm (inches) 25
(1.0)
22
(0.9)
21
(0.8)
34
(1.3)
37
(1.5)
21
(0.8)
11
(0.4)
14
(0.6)
22
(0.9)
28
(1.1)
30
(1.2)
26
(1.0)
291
(11.5)
Average precipitation days (≥ 1 mm) 3.3 2.9 3.0 4.0 5.0 3.4 3.2 3.2 3.5 3.8 2.7 3.1 41.1
Average snowy days 0.4 0.2 0.1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.3 1
Mean monthly sunshine hours 171 171 215 234 259 276 315 288 235 202 167 155 2,696
Source: Meteoblue[6]

Main sightsEdit

Sights in Alcañiz include:

  • Church of Santa María la Mayor, including a medieval Gothic tower.
  • Lonja de Alcañiz
  • Casa Consistorial (Town Hall; 1565–1570)
  • Underground passage; these goes from Town Hall up to the Church and the calle mayor.

A few kilometers from the city are the rock paintings of the Val del Charco del Agua Amarga, included in the UNESCO Heritage Site Rock Art of the Mediterranean Basin on the Iberian Peninsula .

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Municipal Register of Spain 2018. National Statistics Institute.
  2. ^ Eliseo Serrano Martín, El Matarraña y la Historia Moderna. Portal Aragon.
  3. ^ Historia de la línea de La Puebla de Híjar-Alcañiz-Tortosa-Sant Carles de la Ràpita Archived 19 June 2010 at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ "Alcañiz". jewishvirtuallibrary.org.
  5. ^ "ALCAÑIZ". jewishencyclopedia.com.
  6. ^ a b "Clima Alcañiz". meteoblue.

External linksEdit