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Castelldans History

Castelldans is a beautiful, archaic Spanish village located in the province of Lleida of north-east Spain. Castelldans is at the foot of a small hill (328m altitude) at the top of which are the ruins of the castle, which was an important point in the era of Muslim occupation.

The Castelldans Castle dates was erected in 11th century, during the Andalusian period. The Andalusian period was a time where Muslim civilization was elevated to levels never experienced before. The notions of religion, poetry, learned scientists, music, libraries, complex architecture and public baths erupted during this time. At some point one library during these times held 400,000 books! All of this was achieved because of Muslims, Christians and Jews collaborating together. It was a unique and never seen again time when a Muslim ruled the land and there was a Jewish prime minister and a Catholic archbishop. La Convivencia meaning co-existence was the name for this time.

In the 10th century, the Castelldans castle, was surrounded to the count of Barcelona Ramon Berenguer III by the mayor of the Lleida province. In 1412 the castle was acquired by the Carthusian Monastery of Escaladei. From the 16th century the castle served as a refuge for bandits rather than a defensive function.

It is evident that in future years the village of Castelldans was greatly influenced by the catholic church. Many architectural buildings stand as a testament to the fact. There is a church building within the village, dedicated to Our Lady of the Assumption. This is a neoclassical facade and square tower bell tower. The neoclassical facade was essentially that lasted between 1850-1900. During the neoclassical period people tried to imitate the Romans and Greeks be in architectural wise or in terms of literature. With regards to infrastructure, neoclassical architecture was the ‘love-child’ of Rococo and Baroque architectural styles.

The church itself has a polychrome stone image of the Virgin and the Child, from the XV century, which had presided over an old Gothic altarpiece with scenes from Mary’s life.

In the old part of the village there are remains of the presence of the Carthusian monks of Scala Dei on the facades of the houses of the street of the friars, some of which date back to the beginning of the first half of the 17th century. The Carthusian monks of Scala Dei originated from Provence, a region in southern France that borders. They started in the 12th century and had a thorough knowledge and technique that helped develop a winegrowing culture within the Lleida region and its village towns.

In 1835, came the disestablishment of many Spanish monasteries. Many monks fled having been sacked by peasants tired of paying taxes and servitude to them. This resulted in the intriguing complexes being left in ruins.The village of Castelldans, however unknown is filled with a rich history that tells the story of a great region of Spain.