Lleida (IPA: [ˈʎejða]) listen:, also known in Spanish as Lérida (IPA: [ˈleɾiða]), is a city in the west of Catalonia. It is the capital city of the province of Lleida.

Lleida (Catalan)
Lérida (Spanish)
Lleida over the Segre river
Location of Lleida
Coordinates: 41°37′00″N 00°38′00″E / 41.61667°N 0.63333°E / 41.61667; 0.63333
Founded6th century BC
 • TypeMayor-Council
 • MayorMiquel Pueyo (2019) (ERC)
 • Total212.3 km2 (82.0 sq mi)
155 m (509 ft)
 • Total137,856
 • Density650/km2 (1,700/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+1 (CET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+2 (CEST)
Postal code
Dialing code34 (Spain) + 973 (Lleida)
Official language(s)Catalan, Spanish

Geographically, it is located in the Catalan Central Depression. It is also the capital city of the Segrià comarca, as well as the largest city in the province. It had 137,387 inhabitants as of 2010, including the contiguous towns of Raimat and Sucs.

Lleida is one of the oldest towns in Catalonia, with recorded settlements dating back to the Bronze Age period. Until the Roman conquest of the Iberian Peninsula, the area served as a settlement for an Iberian people, the Ilergetes. The town became a municipality, named Ilerda, under the reign of Augustus. It was ruled by the Moors from the 8th century, and reconquered in 1149. In 1297, the University of Lleida was founded, becoming the third oldest in the whole of Spain. During the following centuries, the town was damaged by several wars such as the Reapers' War in the 17th century and the Spanish Civil War in the 20th century. Since then, the city has been in constant urban, commercial and demographic growth.

Name Edit

Although the usual Spanish form of the town's name is Lérida, pronounced [ˈleɾiða], the associations of that name with enforced Castilianization under the Francoist regime have led to the Catalan form Lleida being used for official purposes including in Spanish. The local pronunciation of the name is [ˈʎejðɛ] while the regional pronunciation is [ˈʎejða].[citation needed]

History Edit

Indíbilis, king of the Ilergetes (left) and Mandonius, king of the Ausetani (right)

In ancient times the city, named Iltrida and Ilerda, was the chief city of the Ilergetes, an Iberian tribe. Indíbil, king of the Ilergetes, and Mandoni, king of the Ausetanes, defended it against the Carthaginian and Roman invasions.

Under the Romans, the city was incorporated into the Roman province of Hispania Tarraconensis, and was a place of considerable importance, historically as well as geographically. It stood upon an eminence, on the right (west) bank of the river Sicoris (the modern Segre), the principal tributary of the Ebre, and some distance above its confluence with the Cinga (modern Cinca); thus commanding the country between those rivers, as well as the great road from Tarraco (modern Tarragona), the provincial capital, to the northwest of Spain, which here crossed the Sicoris.[2]

Its situation[3] induced the legates of Pompey in Spain to make it the key of their defense against Caesar, in the first year of the Civil War (49 BC). Afranius and Marcus Petreius threw themselves into the place with five legions; and their siege by Caesar himself (Battle of Ilerda), as narrated in his own words, forms one of the most interesting passages of military history. Caesar’s skill as a general, in a contest where the formation of the district and a series of natural events seemed very favorable to his enemies, ultimately gained him victory. It was ended by the capitulation of Afranius and Petreius.[4] In consequence of the battle, the Latin phrase Ilerdam videas is said to have been used by people who wanted to cast bad luck on someone else.

Under the Roman empire, Ilerda was a prosperous city, and a municipium. It minted its own coins. It had a fine stone bridge over the Sicoris, (the bridge was so sturdy that its foundations support a bridge to this day). In the time of Ausonius the city had fallen into decay; but it rose again into importance in the Middle Ages.[5]

It was part of Visigothic and Muslim Hispania until it was conquered from the Moors by Count Ramon Berenguer IV of Barcelona in 1149.

It used to be the seat of a major university, the oldest in the Crown of Aragon, until 1717, when it was moved by Philip V to the nearby town of Cervera. The University of Lleida is nowadays active again since 1991.

During the Reapers' War, Lleida was occupied by the French and rebel forces. In 1644 the city was conquered by the Spanish under D. Felipe da Silva.

Lleida served as a key defense point for Barcelona during the Spanish Civil War, and fell to the Insurgents, whose air forces bombed it extensively, in 1937 and 1938. The November 2, 1937 Legion Condor attacks against Lleida became especially infamous since they were aimed to the school known as Liceu Escolar de Lleida. 48 children and several teachers died in it that day, 300 people were killed on the November 2 bombings altogether, and the town would be bombed and sieged again in 1938, when it was conquered by Franco's forces.[6]

After some decades without any kind of population growth, it met a massive migration of Andalusians who helped the town undergo a relative demographic growth. Nowadays it is home to immigrants of 146 different nationalities.[7]

During 2007 Lleida was the year's Capital of Catalan Culture.[8]

Climate Edit

Lleida has a temperate semi-arid climate (Köppen BSk).[9] Winters are mild and foggy though cooler than places on the coast while summers are hot and dry. Frosts are common during winter although snowfall can occasionally fall, averaging 1 or 2 days. Precipitation is low, with an annual average of 369 millimetres (15 in) with a peak in April and May and another peak in September and October.

Climate data for Lleida (1981-2010)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 23.5
Average high °C (°F) 10.0
Daily mean °C (°F) 5.5
Average low °C (°F) 0.9
Record low °C (°F) −14.2
Average precipitation mm (inches) 26
Average precipitation days (≥ 1.0 mm) 4 3 4 5 6 4 2 2 4 5 4 4 46
Average relative humidity (%) 81 71 62 59 58 53 52 56 63 73 80 84 66
Mean monthly sunshine hours 116 162 226 248 282 321 356 319 256 195 135 96 2,712
Source 1: Agencia Estatal de Meteorologia[10]
Source 2: Periodico El Pais [11]

Districts and neighbourhoods Edit

Cavallers Street in Centre Històric.

Lleida is divided in the following districts by the Observatori Socioeconòmic de Lleida:

Transport Edit

Railway Edit

Lleida-Pirineus railway station

Lleida is served by Renfe's Madrid-Barcelona high-speed rail line, serving Barcelona, Zaragoza, Calatayud, Guadalajara, and Madrid. Lleida has a new airport opened in January 2010, and a minor airfield located in Alfès. Also, the town is the western terminus of the Eix Transversal Lleida-Girona, and a railway covering the same distance (Eix Transversal Ferroviari) is currently under planning.

Lleida's only passenger railway station is Lleida Pirineus. It is served by both Renfe and Ferrocarrils de la Generalitat de Catalunya train lines. In the future a Rodalies Lleida commuter network will connect the town with its adjacent area and the main towns of its province, improving the existing network with more train frequency and newly built infrastructure. A second railway station is Pla de la Vilanoveta in an industrial area, and only used by freight trains. A future railway museum will be located in its facilities.[12] Since 2008 the bulk of public transport of the Lleida's surrounding area, mainly buses operated by several companies, is managed by Autoritat Territorial de la Mobilitat de l'Àrea de Lleida.

Bus Edit

The urban buses, coloured yellow with blue stripes and owned by Autobusos de Lleida, include the following lines:

  • L-1 Interior
  • L-2 Ronda
  • L-3 Pardinyes
  • L-4 Mariola – Parc científic i tecnològic
  • L-5 Bordeta
  • L-6 Magraners
  • L-7 Secà
  • L-8 Balàfia-Gualda
  • L-9 Hospitals
  • L-10 Exterior
  • L-11 Llívia-Caparrella
  • L-11B Llívia-Caparrella-Butsenit
  • L-12 C.Històric-Universitat
  • L-13 Cappont
  • L-14 Agrònoms
  • L-P Polígons
  • L-17 Bordeta-Ciutat Jardí
  • L-18 Palau de Congressos- Rambla de la Mercé
  • L-19 Butsenit
  • L-N Wonder (Regular night service)
  • L-Bus Turístic (tourist bus)
  • L- Aeroport
  • L- Llotja

In addition to these, there's a tourist bus and a regular night service to nearby clubs.

Lleida-Pirineus airport Edit

Lleida-Alguaire airport

Lleida has depended long time on nearby airports and had no local air transit. Lleida-Alguaire airport opened in 2010.

Future and planned services Edit

A tram-train system is pending approval. Using an existing but outdated passenger line, it would link Balaguer and Lleida, crossing both towns in a much needed move towards better public transportation, both inner-city and between localities.[13][14][15]

Languages Edit

Lleida is a traditionally Catalan-speaking city and province, with a characteristic dialect (known as Western or, more specifically, North-Western Catalan, or colloquially lleidatà). Most of the population is actively bilingual in Spanish.

Largest groups of foreign residents
Nationality Population (2019)
  Romania 5,365
  Morocco 2,568
  Algeria 427
  Senegal 202
  China 138

Culture Edit

Auditori Enric Granados
La Llotja de Lleida
Museu d'Art Jaume Morera

Lleida was the Capital of Catalan Culture in 2007.

Theatre and music venues Edit

Enric Granados Auditorium is the city's concert hall and main music institution and conservatory. It is named after the composer Enric Granados, who was born in the city. CaixaForum Lleida (formerly known as Centre Cultural de la Fundació La Caixa) includes a concert hall. Teatre Municipal de l'Escorxador is the town's main theatre; it includes a concert venue, Cafè del Teatre. A theatre and congress centre, La Llotja de Lleida, opened in 2010.

Music festivals Edit

There are two important music festivals in Lleida; MÚSIQUES DISPERSES Folk Festival in March,[16] and the jazz festival JAZZ TARDOR in November. Concerts are also a regular fixture of the two local feasts, Sant Anastasi in May, and Sant Miquel in September.

Film Edit

CaixaForum Lleida is the usual venue for film-related events and screenings. A Latin-American film festival is held yearly in the town (Mostra de Cinema Llatinoamericà de Lleida), and an animation film festival called Animac is held every May.

Art and museums Edit

The Lleida Museum opened in 2008 and displays historical artefacts and works of art from various periods. The Institut d'Estudis Ilerdencs, a historically relevant building, exhibits both ancient and contemporary art. The Centre d'Art La Panera is a contemporary art institution. The Museu d'Art Jaume Morera displays art from the 20th and 21st centuries (as well as artwork by its namesake).

The city has a number of small municipal galleries, such as the Sala Municipal d'Exposicions de Sant Joan and the Sala Manel Garcia Sarramona. There are also several institutions dedicated to local artists, such as the Sala Leandre Cristòfol, containing artwork by the sculptor and painter Leandre Cristòfol (1908–1998); and the Sala Coma Estadella, dedicated to the sculptor and painter Albert Coma Estadella (1933–1991).

Private art galleries include the Espai Cavallers. The private foundation CaixaForum Lleida and the Public Library of Lleida also offer regular exhibits. The now defunct Petite Galerie was an innovative and influential gallery in the 1970s.

The Escola Municipal de Belles Arts provides higher education in the arts.

Notable people Edit

  • Joan Oró (1923–2004), born in Lleida: biochemist, researcher on the origin of life.
  • Trini Tinturé (born 1935), born in Lleida: cartoonist and illustrator

Traditional culture Edit

The Giants of Lleida in front of the Paeria

Traditional celebrations include the main annual town festivity: Festa Major; Fira de Sant Miquel and L’Aplec del Caragol (escargot-eating festival, the biggest in the world of this sort, held at the Camps Elisis since 1980).

The latter is a gastronomical festivity focused on escargot cooking and is celebrated yearly at the end of May. "L'Aplec" gathers thousands of people around the table to taste the most traditional dishes from Lleida.

Due to its strong popularity, it was declared a traditional festivity of national interest in 2002 by the Generalitat of Catalonia and two years later it was also declared as such by the Spanish Government.

The main traditional celebrations in Lleida are chaired by the twelve emblematic "Gegants de la Paeria" (Giants of the Town Hall), the two oldest made in 1840.

Nightlife Edit

Lleida has a bar and clubbing area, informally known as Els Vins. The oldest part of the quarter, known as Els Vins Vells, has been largely replaced by Els Vins Nous, an architecturally newer and more upscale area. Most big clubs in Lleida are located outside the town and are not easily accessible without a car,[citation needed] though on Saturday nights there is a bus.[17]

Main sights Edit

Seu Vella
Templar castle of Gardeny
Romanesque church of Sant Martí
Casa Magí Llorenç, a modernist building

Sports Edit

Sister cities Edit

Lleida has sister relationships with many places worldwide: [18][19]

References in culture Edit

The city is the subject of the Catalan folk song La Presó de Lleida, "The prison of Lleida", which was already attested in the 17th century and may be even older. It is a very popular tune, covered by many artists such as Joan Manuel Serrat.[21]

See also Edit

References Edit

  1. ^ Municipal Register of Spain 2018. National Statistics Institute.
  2. ^ Antonine Itinerary pp. 391, 452.
  3. ^ To quote Julius Caesar, "propter ipsius loci opportunitatem", Commentarii de Bello Civili i. 38.
  4. ^ Julius Caesar Commentarii de Bello Civili i. 38, et seq.; Florus iv. 12; Appian, B.C. ii. 42; Velleius Paterculus ii. 42; Suetonius Caes. 34; Lucan, Pharsal. iv. 11, 144.
  5. ^ Strabo iii. p. 161; Horat. Epist. i. 20. 13; coins, ap. Florez, Med. ii. pp. 451, 646, iii. p. 73; Théodore Edme Mionnet, vol. i. p. 44, Suppl. vol. i. p. 89; Sestini, pp. 161, 166; Eckhel, vol. i. p. 51.
  6. ^ [1] Archived April 16, 2015, at the Wayback Machine
  7. ^ "Noves sl. primavera-estiu 2005. El repte dels plans pilots per a l'impuls del coneixement i l'us de la llengua catalana: del coneixement a l'ús social, per Dolors Solà". .gencat.net. Archived from the original on 2011-05-16. Retrieved 2011-03-11.
  8. ^ e-barcelona.org. "Lleida se estrena como capital de la cultura catalana durante 2007 :: e-barcelona.org :: Fòrum de Cultura, democratitzem la democràcia". e-barcelona.org. Archived from the original on 2011-07-26. Retrieved 2011-03-11.
  9. ^ "Lleida, Spain Köppen Climate Classification (Weatherbase)". Weatherbase.
  10. ^ "Valores climatológicos normales: Lleida (Periodo: 1981-2010)" (in Spanish). Agencia Estatal de Meteorologia. Retrieved May 16, 2013.
  11. ^ "Temperaturas máximas históricas en las dos últimas olas de calor" (in Spanish). 2015-06-08. Retrieved 2015-10-10.
  12. ^ "El Museu del Ferrocarril de Lleida s'ubicarà a l'estació de la Vilanoveta". Bondia.cat. Archived from the original on 2011-07-06. Retrieved 2011-03-11.
  13. ^ "Data" (PDF). www.transportpublic.org.
  14. ^ "CCOO de les Terres de Lleida. – El tren-tram, transport de futur per a l'àrea de Lleida – www.ccoo.cat/lleida". Ccoo.cat. 2010-01-19. Retrieved 2011-03-11.
  15. ^ "Responsables de Ferrocarrils de Cataluña visitan el TRAM para llevar el modelo a Lleida y Manresa". elperiodic.com. 2009-02-21. Archived from the original on 2011-07-10. Retrieved 2011-03-11.
  16. ^ "MUD. Festival Músiques Disperses". www.musiquesdisperses.com.
  17. ^ "BusNit". www.atmlleida.cat. Retrieved 2020-01-17.
  18. ^ "Viles agermanades – Lleida – Perpignan la Catalane". mairie-perpignan.fr (in French). Retrieved 2007-10-01.
  19. ^ "INFO POINT EUROPA. Ajuntament de Lleida.La UE i Lleida". infopoint.paeria.es (in Catalan). Archived from the original on 2007-09-27. Retrieved 2007-10-01.
  20. ^ "Sister Cities". monterey.org. Archived from the original on 2018-04-19. Retrieved 2018-04-18.
  21. ^ "SegriЯ. "La presз de Lleida", romanу". Xtec.cat. Retrieved 2011-03-11.

Bibliography Edit

External links Edit