Benidorm is a city and municipality in the province of Alicante in eastern Spain, on the Mediterranean coast. Benidorm has been a tourist destination within Spain since 1925, when its port was extended and the first hotels were built. However, the real "boom" of Benidorm as a coastal resort did not happen until the 1950s, when it became a famous summer destination for people coming from inland Spain Madrid. Today it is known for its hotel industry and skyscrapers and receives as many or slightly more foreign tourists as Spanish ones. According to the 2014 census, Benidorm has a permanent population of 69,010 inhabitants, making it the fifth most populous town in the Alicante province, it is thought there were settlements in the Benidorm area as far back as 3000 BC, including evidence of Roman and Punic remains. However, settlements in the area were small and it was not until the arrival of the Moors that the local population began to grow; the Christian King James I of Aragon reconquered the region in 1245 and Benidorm first became known in 1325, when Admiral Bernat de Sarrià of Polop awarded it a town charter as a way of removing the Moors and allowing Christians to inhabit the area.
Benidorm's history for the next few centuries was plagued by attacks from the sea by Ottoman and Barbary pirates. The 17th century saw conditions improve for Benidorm and its people, most notably with the construction of an advanced irrigation system in 1666 to channel water to the region. By the 18th century Benidorm fishermen had sought after all over Spain and beyond. Tuna was their main catch and they perfected the ancient almadraba technique dating from Islamic times; the success of the fishing industry, together with improved local agriculture, helped to fuel a strong local economy. Coastal traffic increased too, bringing more wealth to the region with the town becoming a base for sea captains and the building of their vessels. In 1952 Benidorm's fishing industry went into decline. Today the town is Europe's and Spain's biggest holiday resort and responsible for a significant chunk of Spain's large tourist industry, with five million tourist arrivals per year. After giving the Spanish Socialist Workers' Party majorities or pluralities in elections from the restoration of democracy in 1977, Benidorm has favoured the right wing People's Party since the general elections of 1993.
The PP gained control of the local council at the 1995 local elections and won 14 of the 25 council seats in the 1999 and 2003 elections. The 2007 election gave them a one-seat majority over the PSOE, but disagreements in the PP group led to a motion of censure being passed against the PP mayor in September 2009, he was replaced by the socialist Agustín Navarro. As of the 2015 local elections, the political composition on the local council was the following: The town is divided into five parts: Poniente and Levante, each fronted by a beach of the same name. Between the two beaches lies a rocky promontory and the port; the old city occupies the promontory and the area inland, while most of the hotels occupy the more developed sections inland from the two beaches. A few miles from shore is an uninhabited island which provides a dramatic centrepiece to the seascape. In 1954 Pedro Zaragoza Orts, the young Mayor of Benidorm, created the Plan General de Ordenación that ensured, via a complex construction formula, every building would have an area of leisure land, guaranteeing a future free of the excesses of cramped construction seen in other areas of Spain.
It is the only city in Spain. Most of the streets in the city are named after places such as Avenida de Uruguay, Avenida del Mediterráneo, Calle Pekín, etc. Avenida del Mediterráneo is a wide avenue that links the old town with Rincón. Avenida Europa crosses Levante at right angles linking the western city limits with the Levante beach. Benidorm is connected to the FGV railway line between Dénia; the section to Alicante is now converted to tram operation and trams run at least every half an hour between Benidorm and Alicante. Trains run hourly from Benidorm to Dénia. Benidorm has a hot semi arid climate with mild winters and hot summers; the city receives more than 300 mm in precipitation per year and the wettest season is the mid-late Autumn, which prevents it from being classified as Mediterranean. It enjoys more than 3,000 hours of sunshine per year and the average annual temperature is around 19.0 °C. The maximum temperatures during winter range from 15 to 22 °C, while the lows range from 6 to 12 °C.
The temperature oscillation is small, being smaller during summers, during the summer the maximum temperatures range from 28 to 32 °C while the lows range from 20 to 24 °C. In all of the summer months the city minimum temperatures at night remain above 20 °C, a phenomenon referred to as "tropical night" by Spanish meteorologists. Benidorm is popular with tourists from the UK, Germany and the Netherlands. Benidorm's initial growth in popularity can be attributed to the package holiday explosion, continues year round, due to the night-life based around the central concentration of bars and clubs; the large number of free cabaret acts that start a
Spain the Kingdom of Spain, is a country located in Europe. Its continental European territory is situated on the Iberian Peninsula, its territory includes two archipelagoes: the Canary Islands off the coast of Africa, the Balearic Islands in the Mediterranean Sea. The African enclaves of Ceuta, Peñón de Vélez de la Gomera make Spain the only European country to have a physical border with an African country. Several small islands in the Alboran Sea are part of Spanish territory; the country's mainland is bordered to the south and east by the Mediterranean Sea except for a small land boundary with Gibraltar. With an area of 505,990 km2, Spain is the largest country in Southern Europe, the second largest country in Western Europe and the European Union, the fourth largest country in the European continent. By population, Spain is the fifth in the European Union. Spain's capital and largest city is Madrid. Modern humans first arrived in the Iberian Peninsula around 35,000 years ago. Iberian cultures along with ancient Phoenician, Greek and Carthaginian settlements developed on the peninsula until it came under Roman rule around 200 BCE, after which the region was named Hispania, based on the earlier Phoenician name Spn or Spania.
At the end of the Western Roman Empire the Germanic tribal confederations migrated from Central Europe, invaded the Iberian peninsula and established independent realms in its western provinces, including the Suebi and Vandals. The Visigoths would forcibly integrate all remaining independent territories in the peninsula, including Byzantine provinces, into the Kingdom of Toledo, which more or less unified politically and all the former Roman provinces or successor kingdoms of what was documented as Hispania. In the early eighth century the Visigothic Kingdom fell to the Moors of the Umayyad Islamic Caliphate, who arrived to rule most of the peninsula in the year 726, leaving only a handful of small Christian realms in the north and lasting up to seven centuries in the Kingdom of Granada; this led to many wars during a long reconquering period across the Iberian Peninsula, which led to the creation of the Kingdom of Leon, Kingdom of Castile, Kingdom of Aragon and Kingdom of Navarre as the main Christian kingdoms to face the invasion.
Following the Moorish conquest, Europeans began a gradual process of retaking the region known as the Reconquista, which by the late 15th century culminated in the emergence of Spain as a unified country under the Catholic Monarchs. Until Aragon had been an independent kingdom, which had expanded toward the eastern Mediterranean, incorporating Sicily and Naples, had competed with Genoa and Venice. In the early modern period, Spain became the world's first global empire and the most powerful country in the world, leaving a large cultural and linguistic legacy that includes more than 570 million Hispanophones, making Spanish the world's second-most spoken native language, after Mandarin Chinese. During the Golden Age there were many advancements in the arts, with world-famous painters such as Diego Velázquez; the most famous Spanish literary work, Don Quixote, was published during the Golden Age. Spain hosts the world's third-largest number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Spain is a secular parliamentary democracy and a parliamentary monarchy, with King Felipe VI as head of state.
It is a major developed country and a high income country, with the world's fourteenth largest economy by nominal GDP and sixteenth largest by purchasing power parity. It is a member of the United Nations, the European Union, the Eurozone, the Council of Europe, the Organization of Ibero-American States, the Union for the Mediterranean, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, the Schengen Area, the World Trade Organization and many other international organisations. While not an official member, Spain has a "Permanent Invitation" to the G20 summits, participating in every summit, which makes Spain a de facto member of the group; the origins of the Roman name Hispania, from which the modern name España was derived, are uncertain due to inadequate evidence, although it is documented that the Phoenicians and Carthaginians referred to the region as Spania, therefore the most accepted etymology is a Semitic-Phoenician one.
Down the centuries there have been a number of accounts and hypotheses: The Renaissance scholar Antonio de Nebrija proposed that the word Hispania evolved from the Iberian word Hispalis, meaning "city of the western world". Jesús Luis Cunchillos argues that the root of the term span is the Phoenician word spy, meaning "to forge metals". Therefore, i-spn-ya would mean "the land where metals are forged", it may be a derivation of the Phoenician I-Shpania, meaning "island of rabbits", "land of rabbits" or "edge", a reference to Spain's location at the end of the Mediterranean. The word in question means "Hyrax" due to Phoenicians confusing the two animals. Hispania may derive from the poetic use of the term Hesperia, reflecting the Greek perception of Italy as a "western land" or "land of the setting sun" (Hesperia
The Valencian Community is an autonomous community of Spain. It is the fourth most populous autonomous community after Andalusia and Madrid with more than 4.9 million inhabitants. Its homonymous capital Valencia is metropolitan area in Spain, it is located along the Mediterranean coast on the east side of the Iberian peninsula. It borders with Catalonia to the north and Castilla–La Mancha to the west, Murcia to the south; the Valencian Community consists of three provinces which are Valencia and Alicante. According to its Statute of Autonomy, the Valencian people are a nationality, their origins date back to the Aragonese reconquest of the Moorish Taifa of Valencia, taken by James I of Aragon in 1238 during the Reconquista. The newly founded Kingdom of Valencia was granted wide self-government under the Crown of Aragon. Valencia experienced its golden age in the 15th century. Self-government continued after the unification of the Spanish Kingdom, but was suspended in 1707 by Phillip V of Spain as a result of the Spanish War of Succession.
Valencian nationalism resurged towards the end of the 19th century, which led to the modern conception of the Valencian Country. Self-government under the Generalitat Valenciana was reestablished in 1982 after Spanish transition to democracy. Many Valencian people speak Valencian, the region's own co-official language, a southwestern dialect of Catalan standardised by the Acadèmia Valenciana de la Llengua. Valencian is a diglossic language, repressed during Franco's dictatorship in favour of Spanish. Since it regained official status in 1982 in the Valencian Estatut d'Autonomia. Valencian has been implemented in public administration and the education system leading to an exponential increase in knowledge of its formal standard. Valencian is understood by more than half of the population living within the Valencian Community. Valencia was founded by the Romans under the name of "Valentia Edetanorum", which translates to'Valiance of the Land of the Lamb'. With the establishment of the Taifa of Valencia, the name developed to بلنسية, which became Valencia after the expulsion of the Moors.
"Valencian Community" is the standard translation of the official name in Valencian recognized by the Statute of Autonomy of 1982. This is the name most used in public administration, the media and Spanish written language. However, the variant of "Valencian Country" that emphasizes the nationality status of the Valencian people is still the preferred one by left-wing parties, civil associations, Catalan written language and major academic institutions like the University of Valencia. "Valencian Community" is a neologism, adopted after democratic transition in order to solve the conflict between two competing names: "Valencian Country" and "Former Kingdom of Valencia". On one hand, "Valencian Country" represented the modern conception of nationality that resurged in the 19th century, it became well-established during the Second Spanish Republic and on with the works of Joan Fuster in the 1960s, implying the existence of the "Catalan Countries". This nationalist subtext was opposed by anti-Catalan blaverists, who proposed "Former Kingdom of Valencia" instead in order to emphasize Valencian independence from Catalonia.
Blaverists have accepted the official denomination. The autonomous community can be homonymously identified with its capital "Valencia". However, this could be disregarding of the provinces of Castellón. Other more anecdotal translations have included "Land of Valencia", "Region of Valencia" and "Valencian Region"; the term "Region", carries negative connotations among many Valencians because it could deny their nationality status. The Pre-Roman autochthonous people of the Valencian Community were the Iberians, who were divided in several groups; the Greeks established colonies in the coastal towns of Saguntum and Dénia beginning in the 5th century BC, where they traded and mixed with the local Iberian populations. After the end of the First Punic War between Carthage and Rome in 241 BC, which established their limits of influence in the Ebro river, the Carthaginians occupied the whole region; the dispute over the hegemony of Saguntum, a Hellenized Iberian coastal city with diplomatic contacts with Rome, destroyed by Hannibal in 219 BC, ignited the Second Punic War, which ended with the incorporation of the region to the Roman Empire.
The Romans founded the city of Valentia in 138 BC, over the centuries overtook Saguntum in importance. After the Fall of the Western Roman Empire, during the Barbarian Invasions in the 5th century AD, the region was first invaded by the Alans and ruled by the Visigoths, until the arrival of the Arabs in 711, which left a broad impact in the region, still visible in today's Valencian landscape and culture. After the fall of the Caliphate of Cordoba, two main independent taifas were established at the region, Balansiya and Dénia, along with the small and short living taifas of Orihuela, Alpuente, Jérica and Sagunt and the short Christian conquest of Valencia by El Cid. However, the origins of present-day Valencia date back to the Kingdom of Valencia, which came into existence in the 13th century. James I of Aragon led the Christian conquest and colonization of the existing Islamic taifas with Aragonese and Catalan colonizers in 1208; the kingdom developed intensively in the 14th and 15th centuries, which are con
Alzira is a town and municipality of 45,000 inhabitants in Valencia, eastern Spain. It is the capital of the comarca of Ribera Alta in the province of Valencia. Alzira is located in the province of Valencia, on the left bank of the Júcar river, on the Valencia–Alicante railway. Alzira's climate is Mediterranean: warm with no extremes of temperature either in summer or winter. Rainfall is irregular. Torrential rains follow periods of relative drought; the town contains the Murta and Casella valleys. Alzira's borough extends over 111 square kilometres. Alzira was founded by the Muslim Moors under the name Jazirat Shukr which became known as Júcar Island, it was a prosperous trading station during the reign of the Muslim Moors which lasted over five hundred years. During that time the city had a local administrative government and was considered as a cultural hub for writers and law experts; the city was conquered by James I of Aragon on 30 December 1242. Alzira, located right on the bank of the Júcar, has suffered devastating floods throughout its history - in particular in 1472, 1590, 1864, 1916, 1982 and 1987.
Alzira has been a walled town, surrounded by palm and mulberry groves, by low-lying rice-swamps, which rendered its neighborhood somewhat unhealthy. It is sometimes identified with the pre-Roman Sucro. According to one source, the mutiny at Sucro of 206 BC, squelched by Scipio Africanus, was at or near present-day Alzira, a few kilometers east of the mouth of the Sucro/Jucar River. Agriculture was the prime economic driving force in Alzira up to the mid-20th century; the most important produce are oranges and they are distributed by important local co-operatives. During the 20th century, Alzira changed from an agricultural based economy to a diversified industry-orientated city with an important commercial infrastructure and associated services. Many outstanding companies have their head-office in the city: building and publishing companies, diverse manufacturers and ice cream factories, etc. Alzira has become a important commercial city due to its influence area, estimated about 300,000 inhabitants.
Alzira has a 250-bed Community Hospital, the Hospital de la Ribera, built in 1999 by UTE-Ribera, under a Private Finance Initiative scheme. Under the contract the Valencia Health Department pays an annual capitation-fee per inhabitant of 420 euros to Ribera Salud. There are about 250000 inhabitants in the area; the hospital has to pay for any treatment provided elsewhere for those inhabitants, they are at liberty to go elsewhere. After 10 years the building revertss to the Valencia Health Department. During 2001, there were 19205 inpatient episodes, 19098 surgical acts, 115428 A&E visits, 462733 outpatient visits. 90% of the patients seen were satisfied with the care they got. This capitation based system with integration between primary and secondary care providers and a unified IT system across all services has become known as the Alzira model and received a great deal of attention; the quality of services appears to be higher than other health care systems. Monastery of la Murta: It is constituted of buildings rising in the following three periods: SXIX_XV, XVI y XVII.
In the 19th century, after the expropriation, his new owner raised a manor over the hospice of the monastery. The Monastery has a partition battlemented wall. Nowadays, In the garden. There are still remainders gathering in the walls. In that way, it has prepared to increase the defensive function; the elements of the group are: Monastery: The new church and the Tower of the Bells._ Fortified tower of la Porteria. Ruins of the monastery and adjacent elements. Foster chapel of' La Virgen de la Murta'. Alzira walled circuit: The walls of Alzira were built around a possible river island, from which derives its name in Arabic had a dual purpose, first the defense, second the flood protection of Júcar river; the walls were buried by the river. The walled circuit was formed by a double wall which today contains the historical center of “la Vila”, dated in the Islamic period where some of the mosques and baths were settled. Nowadays, the remains are located in two areas of the city, “el parque de las murallas” and “las murallas del Antiguo Mercado” Town council hall of Alzira: This building has a civil Gothic style of the Crown of Aragon.
Its oldest part dates from the 16th century and, although we can say that the construction of its plant obeys to medieval patterns alternating the Ghotic style and the Baroque. It is a building with a quadrangular plant and a three water covered with Arabic tiles in whose construction the following local unions have collaborated: stonecutters and mull wall, its interior rooms are arranged around a rectangular gallery. In 1930 it was declared an Artistic National Monument Santa Catalina church of Alzira: The building was rebuilt in the 17th century on an earlier mosque, with a Gothic basilica and a Gothic factory, it is inserted into the so-called “reconquista” churches with a single ground covered with a cannon vault open with lunettes and open chapels between buttresses, covered with a mid-cannon vault. Over the transept, a drum covered by a dome over scallops sets up; this was replaced by a new double-sloped roof that covers the entire temple Mare de Déu del Lluch Sanctuary of Alzira: Construction built in a neo-Romanesque style.
The temple of three naves is covered with groin vault, while the major chapel is fixed with another kind of vault. The access is thro
Province of Alicante
Alicante, or Alacant, is a province of eastern Spain, in the southern part of the Valencian Community. The second and third biggest cities in the Valencian Community are located in this province. Alicante is bordered by the provinces of Murcia on the southwest, Albacete on the west, Valencia on the north, the Mediterranean Sea on the east; the province is named after the city of Alicante. According to the 2018 population data, Alicante ranks as the 4th most populous province in Spain, with 1,838,819 inhabitants. Cities with more than 50,000 inhabitants in the province are Alicante, Torrevieja, Benidorm, Alcoy and San Vicente del Raspeig; the province has the largest ratio of foreigner population among all Spanish provinces. The total of 446,368 foreigners are registered in the province, which represents 23.6 percent of the total population. Out of 141 municipalities that make up the province, foreign population is above 25% in 54 municipalities, above 50% in 19 municipalities; the latter include San Fulgencio, Benitatxell, Algorfa, Llíber, Daya Vieja.
From the 50 provinces of Spain, Alicante is the only one with three metropolitan areas—Alicante–Elche, Elda–Petrer and Benidorm—even though only one of them is ranked within the Spanish top ten metropolitan areas. It has an area of 5.816,5 km², so it has a population density of 313.8 hab/km². The province is mountainous in the north and west, whereas it is flat to the south, in the Vega Baja del Segura area. All of these peaks are a part of the Subbaetic Range; the coast extends from the cape, Cap de la Nau, in the north to reaching the Mar Menor in the south. With regard to water sources, due to the dry rain regime there are no major rivers, but ramblas, which fill in with water when torrential rains occur; the only remarkable streams are the Vinalopó, the river Segura. Other minor seasonal creeks are Girona, Algar and Ebo. There are saline wetlands and marshlands along the coast such El Fondo and the former wetlands and now salt evaporation ponds in Santa Pola and Torrevieja. All of them are key Ramsar Sites which make the Alicante province of high relevance for both migratory and resident seabirds and waterbirds.
Important coastal dunes are present in the Guardamar area which were planted with thousands of pine trees during the 19th century in order to protect the ville from the dunes advancing, which has created now an area of remarkable ecologic value. The climate is strikingly diverse for such a reduced area. Three major areas can be cited, it goes along the coastal plain from La Vila Joiosa through the southernmost border. Summers are long, hot to hot and dry, winters are cool to mild and its most prominent feature is scarce precipitation below 300mm. Per year and most to happen during spring and autumn; the reasons for this lack of precipitation is the marked rain shadow effect caused by hills to the west of the Alicante province. Most of its few rainy days happen during Spring; the predominant vegetation in this part of the province is Matorral Scrublands including thyme, esparto and the like. Proper Mediterranean climate is present in the northeastern areas around Cap de la Nau to its North but to its South, in diminishing grades until disappearing north of Benidorm.
It goes along the coastal plain from the northern border of the province through the Benidorm area. The north slopes of the mountains in the Marina Alta have a remarkably wetter microclimate with an average of up to 900mm of precipitation due to orographic lift, with most of the precipitation occurring in Autumn and Spring; the precipitation in this area is an average four times the one of the semiarid South, with this big precipitation gap occurring in a matter of just 100 km. The vegetation of this part is an enriched version of the Matorral shrubland and Mediterranean pine woods; the Alicante province has a dry Mediterranean to Continental Mediterranean climate. These are the innermost part of some closer to the sea but at a higher elevation. Here winters are cool to cold and a few days of snow are not unusual; the innermost part of this domain is more quite dry while the mountainous part reach higher precipitation figures which allow Kermes Oak woods to thrive, such as the one in La Carrasqueta or in the Mariola range, both near Alcoy.
The Iberians were the oldest documented people living in. Belonging to these there are several archaeologi
Segura is a medium-sized river in southeastern Spain. It has its source in the Sierra de Segura; the river begins at Santiago Pontones, passes Calasparra, Blanca, Murcia, Beniaján, Orihuela and ends in the Mediterranean Sea near Guardamar del Segura in the province of Alicante. Some of its tributaries are the Alhárabe, the Mula and the Guadalentín; the alluvial plain is called the Vega del Segura and is a productive agricultural region growing a wide variety of fruit and flowers. The Vegas are divided into three areas: Alta and Baja. By the 1990s, the Segura had become one of the most polluted rivers in Europe, due to the canning industry and urban and agricultural residues originating in the densely populated area in the medium and lower areas of the basin; this fact combined with low or extreme low flows in the same areas –the agricultural use of water and summer drought could reduce the mean discharge to just around 2 to 3 m3/s in Murcia city– made more difficult to dilute pollutants. Public outcry peaked with a demonstration gathering 40,000 people.
A comprehensive action plan followed, the Segura River Project, developed by the Murcia Government's Regional Water Department, in partnership with the Segura River Authority and town councils in the region, to restore the health of the Segura River and to supply reclaimed water to the booming agriculture industry. Between 2001 and 2010, 100 water treatment plants and 350 kilometres of wastewater collection systems were built. In addition, a wastewater reclamation levy was established to finance the operation and monitoring of these systems, applying the principle "the polluter pays". By 2003 the quality of the Segura's water started improving. Since 2010, pollution has been unnoticeable, leading to the recovery of fauna and flora including increased otter population in parts of the river they had once abandoned. Birds now rest at two recovered wetland areas recognised by the Ramsar Convention, during their migration between Europe and Africa. In addition, around 110 million m3 of reclaimed water is reused annually for agriculture in the region.
With the river coming back to life, by 2013, otters and eels –both species sensitive to water pollutants– had repopulated large tracts of the river where they had been absent for decades. As of 2015 the Segura River Project is a finalist for the 2016 European Riverprize Awards, organized by the International River Foundation; this recognizes the fact that the Segura went from being one of the most polluted major rivers in Europe to being the Spanish river with the lowest average pollution in the span of just one decade. The Segura is in a state of semi-permanent drought, now and it does flood as the consequence of the torrential rains, which take place once every 6–9 years always in Autumn and Spring. Guadalentín river, a tributary of Segura, is the wildest European river. In the twentieth century significant flooding occurred in 1946, 1948, 1973, 1982, 1987 and 1989. Since 1990 the lower reaches of the river have been canalized, removing meanders and hence improving the evacuation of flood waters.
The new canal was put to the test in September 1997, in October 2000 and in December 2016 when heavy rainfall resulted in significant runoff. List of rivers of Spain Basin Drowning Flash flood Flood Flood protection Irrigation district Saltwater intrusion Transvasement La Vicaria Arch Bridge Water pollution Water stress Segura's river basin body "Confederación Hidrográfica del Segura" Chronology of the main floods occurred in the river basin, beginning with Santa Teresa flood
Catalonia is an autonomous community in Spain on the northeastern corner of the Iberian Peninsula, designated as a nationality by its Statute of Autonomy. Catalonia consists of four provinces: Barcelona, Girona and Tarragona; the capital and largest city is Barcelona, the second-most populated municipality in Spain and the core of the sixth most populous urban area in the European Union. It comprises most of the territory of the former Principality of Catalonia, it is bordered by France and Andorra to the north, the Mediterranean Sea to the east, the Spanish autonomous communities of Aragon to the west and Valencia to the south. The official languages are Catalan and the Aranese dialect of Occitan. In the late 8th century, the counties of the March of Gothia and the Hispanic March were established by the Frankish kingdom as feudal vassals across and near the eastern Pyrenees as a defensive barrier against Muslim invasions; the eastern counties of these marches were united under the rule of the Frankish vassal, the count of Barcelona, were called Catalonia.
In the 10th century the County of Barcelona became independent de facto. In 1137, Barcelona and the Kingdom of Aragon were united by marriage under the Crown of Aragon; the de jure end of Frankish rule was ratified by French and Aragonese monarchs in the Treaty of Corbeil in 1258. The Principality of Catalonia developed its own institutional system, such as courts, constitutions, becoming the base for the Crown of Aragon's naval power and expansionism in the Mediterranean. In the Middle Ages, Catalan literature flourished. During the last Medieval centuries natural disasters, social turmoils and military conflicts affected the Principality. Between 1469 and 1516, the king of Aragon and the queen of Castile married and ruled their realms together, retaining all of their distinct institutions and legislation. During the Franco-Spanish War, Catalonia revolted against a large and burdensome presence of the royal army in its territory, being proclaimed a republic under French protection. Within a brief period France took full control of Catalonia, until it was reconquered by the Spanish army.
Under the terms of the Treaty of the Pyrenees in 1659, the Spanish Crown ceded the northern parts of Catalonia the County of Roussillon, to France. During the War of the Spanish Succession, the Crown of Aragon sided against the Bourbon Philip V of Spain; this led to the eclipse of Catalan as a language of literature, replaced by Spanish. Along the 18th century, Catalonia experienced economic growth, reinforced in the late quarter of the century when the Castile's trade monopoly with American colonies ended. In the 19th century, Catalonia was affected by the Napoleonic and Carlist Wars. In the second third of the century, Catalonia experienced significant industrialisation; as wealth from the industrial expansion grew, Catalonia saw a cultural renaissance coupled with incipient nationalism while several workers movements appeared. In 1914, the four Catalan provinces formed a commonwealth, with the return of democracy during the Second Spanish Republic, the Generalitat of Catalonia was restored as an autonomous government.
After the Spanish Civil War, the Francoist dictatorship enacted repressive measures, abolishing Catalan self-government and banning the official use of the Catalan language again. After a first period of autarky, from the late 1950s through to the 1970s Catalonia saw rapid economic growth, drawing many workers from across Spain, making Barcelona one of Europe's largest industrial metropolitan areas and turning Catalonia into a major tourist destination. Since the Spanish transition to democracy, Catalonia has regained considerable autonomy in political, educational and cultural affairs and is now one of the most economically dynamic communities of Spain. In the 2010s there has been growing support for Catalan independence. On 27 October 2017, the Catalan Parliament declared independence from Spain following a disputed referendum; the Spanish Senate voted in favour of enforcing direct rule by removing the entire Catalan government and calling a snap regional election for 21 December. On 2 November of the same year, the Spanish Supreme Court imprisoned 7 former ministers of the Catalan government on charges of rebellion and misuse of public funds, while several others—including then-President of Catalonia, Carles Puigdemont—fled to other European countries.
The name Catalonia—Catalunya in Catalan, spelled Cathalonia, or Cathalaunia in Medieval Latin—began to be used for the homeland of the Catalans in the late 11th century and was used before as a territorial reference to the group of counties that comprised part of the March of Gothia and March of Hispania under the control of the Count of Barcelona and his relatives. The origin of the name Catalunya is subject to diverse interpretations because of a lack of evidence. One theory suggests that Catalunya derives from the name Gothia Launia, since the origins of the Catalan counts and people were found in the March of Gothia, known as Gothia, whence Gothlan