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Retiendas (Municipality, Castilla-La Mancha, Spain)

Last modified: 2020-02-22 by ivan sache
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Presentation of Retiendas

The municipality of Retiendas (42 inhabitants in 2018 vs. 483 in 1950; 2,099 ha) is located 50 km north of Guadalajara.

Ivan Sache, 7 September 2019

Symbols of Retiendas

The flag and arms of Retiendas are prescribed by Order No. 51, issued on 14 March 2019 by the Government of Castilla-La Mancha and published on 28 March 2019 in the official gazette of Castilla-La Mancha, No. 62, p. 9,771 (text).
The symbols are described as follows:

Flag: Horizontal, in proportions 2:3, with three vertical stripes. The first, along the hoist, vert (1:4), the second, orange, charged with the proper arms of the municipality (1:2), and the third, gules (1:4).
Coat of arms: Per fess, 1. Azure a monastery proper cantonned by four fleurs-de-lis or, 2. Vert a three-arched bridge argent on waves azure and argent. The shield surmounted by a Royal Spanish crown.

The coat of arms features the monastery of Santa María de Bonaval.
In 1164, King Alfonso VIII offered the valley where the monastery would be built to a group of Cistercian monks, commissioned to resettle the area and to protect it against Moorish raids, although the border with the Muslim states was already further in the south. The first monks came from the Santa María de Valbuena monastery in Valladolid, and, probably, from the French homonimic monastery of Notre-Dame de Bonneval. In 1175, Alfonso VIII transferred the hwole valley to the monks and listed the possessions of the monastery.
Bonaval is among the southernmost Cistercian foundations, built in Romanesque style with Gothic evolutions, in compliance with the Cistercian rules. The building of the church must have been initiated on the early 13th centuery.
In 1821, the monks withdrew to Toledo and the monastery was sold to private owners who could not care less for its preservation. Some capitals were re-used in the village's houses and fountain. Most archives and artwork were lost, except a few pieces kept by the Retiendas parish.

Parts of the church are still standing, mostly the chevet, the transept crossing and the southern nave; a sacristy appended to the apse was probably a chapel used during the building of the church. The church was rectangular (42 m x 37 m), with three naves and three apses, the central, polygonal, and the lateral, rectangular. The main architectural element of the church is the main gate, located in the southern end of the transept, with four archivolts and four pairs of columns decorated with naturalistic capitals.
Bonval, included on 2 December 2007 on the Red List of Heritage, was delisted on 28 June 2018 after the Government of Castilla-la Mancha had initiated restoration works; the first out of the four restoration sequences has been completed, so that the monument can be open to the public.

Ivan Sache, 7 September 2019