A Rocha, an unpublished chapter of Compostela
How could fade from memory the largest castle in Galicia? How is it that hardly anyone remembers Castle Rocha Forte - "strong rock" in Castilian, Santiago de Compostela? Perhaps that toppled compostelanos chose to remain silent for later generations would not have to relive the atrocities and injustices that were committed within its walls. Perhaps the powerful ecclesiastical lords did not want the news of such a defeat might spread to other places. Wherever one went the picture was always the same: rebellious, hungry and tired of corporate feudalism, one of fertilizers were germinated Modern Age.
Anyway, the visitor can find in the western exit of Compostela remains of the castle of Rocha Forte, a magnificent fortress that dominated the city from the twelfth century until 1467, year in which he endured last attack a village desperate and in arms.
This chapter is called war Irmandiña the Great War and it how different men and women, peasants and sailors, gentry and clergy plain formed Brotherhood to tell they end the cruel power of the laity Galician nobles and laity.
The memory of the castle has been restored thanks to the intense archaeological work and communication researchers undertook Xurxo Ayán, José Suárez Otero Suárez and Carlos Marín collection appearing in the web enabled. There we explained that the castle was occupied from the XII century but was with the Archbishop of Berenger Landoire when episodes of drama and terror that marked the relationship of the inhabitants of the castle to begin Compostela.
The castle's history begins when Pope John XXII begins a process of administrative centralization in Europe and chooses to Landoira Berenger as archbishop of Compostela. The new prelate is a French Dominican and revealing figure in the papal court. Berenger monopolizes capital honors, virtues and experience to perform the job and this is precisely the problem: it will be the first archbishop from Xoán Arias, who has a real ability to take control of the manor and church of Compostela.
By that time, Compostela feudal bourgeois trying to escape the control of the Church and become a city of royal heritage, which guaranteed them autonomy as the king lived far away and could not interfere in their affairs. Remember that almost all the free people of Compostela came from proles of serfs and for the world wanted to be near such a powerful authority as the new archbishop was not well received. His response to the papal mandate was the beginning of an urban revolt that prevented him from entering the city.
In November 1318, when Berenger reaches Compostela to take possession of his office, the urban uprising got out of the city. The archbishop took refuge in the archbishop's towers and castle Pontevedra Rocha Forte, closer to the city. Thus, the fortress became the main residence of the archbishop and also in the center of military operations against the rebels.
During the urban revolt of 1318-20, citizens attacked the castle supported by Afonso Suárez de Deza, archbishop of Lieutenant strengths, and the Infante Don Felipe. The first siege to the castle, where they set fire to some units, happened in February 1319. After two years of conflict Berenger ending the uprising.
The revolt ends in a bloody, between walls of the fortress, on September 16, 1320, an opprobrious Compostela date for freedom. In the so-called "ajustizamento" men treacherously murdered Archbishop Afonso Suárez de Deza and eleven other leaders of the urban riots, and managed to restore the power of the archbishop in Compostela. The following month, as punishment for the allies of the rebels, Berenger sent his troops to attack Terra do Deza castles Churruchaos and grab the other strengths.
The experience of this uprising and the siege served to Berenger would notice the strategic potential of the castle. He decided to rebuild it and strengthen it to consolidate his power in the area, boosting its military architecture and giving a new configuration, following the latest trends in Europe at the time. And so did the Santiago Cathedral, which became a veritable fortress.
The last great war episode caused his disappearance happened in the year 1467. Spite of the monumental technology deployment, pride of a medieval world in transition to modernity, the castle fell before the desperation of people in arms.
For two centuries, the fortress was the symbol a sociopolitical system based on coercion, repression and injustice. And injustice walls could do nothing, mullets and bombards. Convened on the hill of Santa Susana, Compostela, peasants, which also bind some knights and even ecclesiastical form Brotherhood and turns to attack Rocha last. There would be no tomorrow for those black towers.
It is not known exactly how they were fighting, but archeology can deduce that were very intense: fire to destroy the interior of the fort and weaken the walls, constantly crossing and crossbow bolts bolaños of blunderbusses ... Uploaded aversion and anger of years and years of abuse and violations. Abuses complained that the Lord, who in turn led them to request for help to the king, and finally take the law into their own.
The towers and walls fell and the castle was mortally wounded in the Great War Irmandiña. The war ended with the victory of the upper stratum but nobody wanted to redo A Rocha, a symbol of a world that was turned off and a warning to anyone who wanted to claim power for himself in the new era advenía. The following year, plundering and abandonment material finished the job that hatred and despair had begun. Destruction and oblivion of evil that nested in A Rocha Forte completed.
Today, thanks to archaeological recovery project, you can visit the castle's foundation and understand how it worked. It was one of the most modern fortifications of the time so it is a unique opportunity to meet more precisely. Visitors can get a more complete picture of how Santiago was in the Middle Ages.
Photo of rochaforte.info