Priorat (Catalan pronunciation: [pɾi.uˈɾat]) is a comarca (county) in Catalonia, Spain. The central part of the comarca, "Priorat històric," produces the highly regarded wines that are certified under the DOQ Priorat.[1] Wines from elsewhere in the comarca are certified as DO Montsant although this region also has a small segment of the neighboring comarca, Ribera d'Ebre as well.[2] However, galena mining was the main activity since prehistoric times until 1972, when the last galeana mine closed.[3]

Priorat
Coat of arms of Priorat
Localització del Priorat.svg
Country Spain
Autonomous community Catalonia
ProvinceTarragona
CapitalFalset
Municipalities
Area
 • Total498.61 km2 (192.51 sq mi)
Population
 (2017)
 • Total9,345
 • Density19/km2 (49/sq mi)
Demonym(s)Prioratí, prioratina
Time zoneUTC+1 (CET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+2 (CEST)
Largest municipalityFalset

The other main agricultural activity is the production of olives and olive oil, the latter of which is certified under DOP Siurana.[1] Historically there was greater production of hazelnuts and almonds but these activities have become mostly for personal use. In late 1800s, a devastating attack of the insect phylloxera destroyed vines and mining kept activities and around twenty mines opened at that time.[3]

Priorat saw a steady loss of population throughout the 20th century due to a number of external factors such as the Spanish Civil War and the rise of coastal tourism. In 2004, with a more prosperous economy there was an overall increase in population that peaked in 2010 and has since been decreasing again each year. In 2001, the population was 9,196, with only the capital, Falset exceeding a population of 1,000 and while it has over 2,800 residents as of 2017, the comarca overall has reduced to 9,345 from a high of 10,145 making it the 3rd least populated comarca in all of Catalonia.

Physical geographyEdit

Priorat has an area of 496 km2 and is bordered by the River Ebro, and by the comarques of Ribera d'Ebre, Baix Camp, les Garrigues, and Conca de Barberà. The region is mostly hilly, and in the extreme north of the comarca is the Montsant mountain range, rising to over 1000 m; the south is bordered by the Mola de Colldejou and the mountain ranges of Serra de Llaberia and Serra de Santa Marina.

The climate is continental: dry and hot in summer, cold in the winter.

MunicipalitiesEdit

Municipality Population
(2017)[4]
Area
km2[4]
Bellmunt del Priorat 290 8.9
La Bisbal de Falset 217 14.1
Cabacés 309 31.3
Capçanes 403 22.5
Cornudella de Montsant 953 63.5
Falset 2,820 31.6
La Figuera 102 18.7
Gratallops 237 13.5
Els Guiamets 272 12.1
El Lloar 117 6.6
Marçà 602 16.1
Margalef 101 34.7
El Masroig 510 15.5
El Molar 286 22.8
La Morera de Montsant 158 52.9
Poboleda 356 14.0
Porrera 441 28.8
Pradell de la Teixeta 163 21.8
La Torre de Fontaubella 137 7.1
Torroja del Priorat 149 13.2
Ulldemolins 395 38.2
La Vilella Alta 127 5.2
La Vilella Baixa 200 5.6
• Total: 23 9,345 498.6

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b Miquel Hudin (2015), Vinologue Priorat, Vinologue, p. 480, ISBN 978-1941598030
  2. ^ Miquel Hudin (2014), Vinologue Montsant, Vinologue, p. 312, ISBN 978-0983771890
  3. ^ a b Maltman, Alex, 1944-. Vineyards, rocks, and soils : the wine lover's guide to geology. New York, NY. ISBN 978-0-19-086329-6. OCLC 1023575788.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  4. ^ a b "El municipi en xifres". Institut d'Estadística de Catalunya. Retrieved 2018-05-12.

External linksEdit

Coordinates: 41°08′N 0°49′E / 41.133°N 0.817°E / 41.133; 0.817