The Route to Santiago in History
An Extraordinary Find
The history of the Route to Santiago dates back to the beginning of the 9C, when the sepulchre of Santiago el Mayor (James the Greater), evangelist in Spain, was discovered. The facts concerning this find have been embellished by people´s imagination, without distorting reality, so that they become more poetic.
One of these legends is the one that locates the extraordinary event in the former diocese of Iria Flavia, when the hermit Pelayo had a "divine revelation" in the deep of the forest. He sees "altar lights" and hears "angels singing". The parishioners of San Félix de Solobio, at the foot of the forest, announced the event. The bishop Teodomiro went in the forest, found the mausoleum and identified it as the Apostle Santiago´s tomb.
The Routes to Santiago de Compostela
Most pilgrims who arrived at Santiago followed the "French route", but there are other six historic routes. The French route is the most travelled by and promoted. It enters Spain through Roncesvalles and Sompot, in the Pyrenees and crosses the autonomous communities of Aragón, Navarra, La Rioja, Castilla, León and Galicia.
James the Greater
The Apostle James (Santiago) the Greater, as he was called by christian tradition, was one of the sons of Zebedeo and Salome; his brother was John the evangelist, also Apostle. He was invited by Jesus "beside his brother and immediately after Peter and Andrew- to become fisherman of men". He was one of the apostles that had a close and intimate relationship with the son of God.
The Romanesque Art along the Route to Santiago
The development of the Romanesque art, the first international style in the Middle Ages, took place after the consolidation of the Route, in the 11 and 12 C. The cultural interchanges derived from the pilgrimage caused the extension of this artistic movement, with its local variants, all over Europe. The Route to Santiago brought about many changes in the Medieval society that also contributed to the extension of the Romanesque: the strengthening of European kingdoms, the increase of the population, and the extension of trade.
History of the Route to Santiago in Navarre
Historia del Camino de Santiago en La Rioja
There are no translations available.
La Rioja, cuenta con el tramo más corto de las comunidades atravesadas del Camino Francés. Sin embargo la importancia histórica, cultural, social y artística de este segmento de 65 km. es fundamental. Baste dar algunos ejemplos.Como se ha sugerido, y según la Historia Silense, es Sancho III el Mayor quien fija a principios del siglo XI el que sería ya definitivo trazado del Camino Francés.
The Castles along the Route
Castles are the most characteristic symbols of the Middle Ages in Spain. Between the years 722 and 1422 the Iberian landscape was filled with these magnificent stone constructions that stood majestically on strategic sites. Its number increased spectacularly thanks to the economic expansion and the reconquest of territories that had been under the control of the Arabs for centuries. This favourable socio-economic situation was partly due to the Route. The constant surge of pilgrims brought about the interchange of capitals and the arrival of people from all over Europe, who brought with them their knowledges and money. With these funds, the Kings of the Peninsula could contract mercenaries to continue with the reconquest of lands on the South.