Pamplona History, History of Pamplona, Navarra, Spain, Europe

Pamplona History

History of Pamplona, Navarra, Spain, Europe

Pamplona History

With a history stretching back over 2,000 years Pamplona derives it's name from the Roman general Pompey, who founded the city by setting up camp there in around 75BC. Though then known as Pompaelo it grew to become a settlement of a reasonable size before the Visigoths arrived in 409AD.

The arrival of the Moors in the 8th century saw the beginnings of a tumultuous period for Pamplona; largely due to it's proximity to Frankish lands which forced it into the struggle between Christian and Islamic powers. In 778AD Charlemagne demolished the city's defensive fortifications only to see the city recaptured by the Moors in 781AD. Faced by growing Frankish advances Pamplona was destroyed in 924 by Abd ar-Rahman III, reducing it to little more than a small town for years afterwards.

Populace migrations eventually led to the area being settled in a concentrated fashion once more; though this time in the form of three settlements in close proximity to each other. It was not until 1423 that the city of Pamplona was rejoined once more under the authority of the King of Navarre Charles III. Less than a hundred years later this kingdom was split; the southern portion governed as an autonomous region by the kingdom of Castile followed by the King of Spain, and the northern part becoming part of France.

The geographical border between Spain and France caused by the split of Navarre led to Pamplona's increasing strategic importance and by the 17th century was heavily fortified. However this did not stop the armies of Napoleon Bonaparte occupying it for five years from 1808. Thankfully Pamplona survived this period pretty much intact and both its medieval quarter and fortified areas are still in a good condition today. Of particular interest is it's star fort; a fortification built in the shape of a star for better defence against cannon and other artillery fire.

Pamplona Tourist Office

TEL        +34 948 206540

FAX        +34 948 207034

 

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Pamplona History, History of Pamplona, Navarra, Spain, Europe

 

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