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Fermoselle (Municipality, Castilla y León, Spain)

Last modified: 2015-01-17 by ivan sache
Keywords: fermoselle | zamora |
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Flag of Fermoselle - Image by "Xavigivax" (Wikimedia Commons), 20 March 2011

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Presentation of Fermoselle

The municipality of Fermoselle (1,462 inhabitants in 2010; 6,934 ha; unofficial website) is located in the south-western corner of the Zamora Province, on the borders with Portugal (here, river Duero) and the Salamanca Province (here, river Tormes), 60 km from Zamora.

Fermoselle, due to its strategic location, was probably settled ages ago, although there is no archeological evidence older than the Middle Ages. The castle of Fermoselle is traditionally considered as the preferred residence of Queen Urraca (1148-1188). The daughter of King Alfonso I of Portugal, Urraca married Ferdinand II of León, the marriage being part of the peace concluded between Portugal and Castile; ten years later, Pope Alexander III cancelled the marriage and the disgraced queen had to leave the court, retiring, according to the tradition, in Fermoselle.
On 27 December 1205, Urraca's son, King Alfonso IX, transferred Fermoselle from the Royal domain to Martín, Bishop of Zamora, except 12 burghers who would remain under the jurisdiction of the Zamora Council. The charter granted on 16 February 1221 by the King established the rights of the Council of Fermoselle; confirmed on 12 April 1234 by Fernando III and on 12 August 1255 by Alfonso X, the charter did not prevent a long-lasting quarrel between the Bishop and the Zamora Council for the control of Fermoselle.

The castle of Fermoselle was suppressed at the end of the Comuneros Revolt; one of the leaders of the uprising against Charles I's power was Bishop of Zamora Antonio de Acuña. Supported by some 300 priests, Acuña used the church's money and sold several religious artworks to fund the military campaigns; some historians have pointed out that Acuña already traded artworks before the uprising and that such a controversial behavior was quite common among bishops at the time. Acuña made of Fermoselle his stronghold, where he jailed Ronquillo, Mayor of Zamora. Captured by the Royal troops, Acuña was tried by a court presided by the very same Ronqullo, tortured and garrotted on 23 March 1526.

Ivan Sache, 20 March 2011

Symbols of Fermoselle

The flag and arms of Fermoselle are prescribed by a Decree adopted on 28 April 1999 by the Zamora Provincial Government, signed on 17 May 1999 by the President of the Government, and published on 1 June 1999 in the official gazette of Castilla y León, No. 103, p. 5,841 (text).
The symbols are described as follows:

Flag: Rectangular flag, with proportions 2:3, made of two horizontal stripes with proportions 3:4 and 1:4, the upper stripe white with a red castle with blue port and windows, the lower stripe blue.
Coat of arms: Argent a castle gules masoned sable port and windows azure in base waves azure and argent. The shield surmounted with a Royal crown closed.

Ivan Sache, 20 March 2011