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Abadía (Municipality, Extremadura, Spain)

Last modified: 2020-11-06 by ivan sache
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Flag of Abadía - Image by Tomislav Todorović, 19 March 2020

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Presentation of Abadía

The municipality of Abadía (334 inhabitants in 2016, 4,508 ha; municipal website; presentation video) is located 120 km north-east of Cáceres and 30 km north of Plasencia, on the border with Castilla y León (Province of Salamanca).

Abadía is of unknown origin. Its oldest archeological remains probably belonged to a Roman villa managed from the town of Caparra. The Muslims erected a fortress, which was granted to the Order of the Temple after the Christian reconquest.
A Cistercian abbey (abadía) was established in the 12th century. Abadía was separated from the town of Granadilla in 1280 by King Alfonso X. Ferdinand, 1st Count of Alba de Tormes, increased the village in 1444 and built the Sotofermoso palace. Mostly used as a place of leisure, the palace was enjoyed by the Catholic Monarchs, Joanna the Mad and Philip II.

In the 16th century, Fernando Álvarez de Toledo (1507-1582), the Great Duke of Alba, commissioned an Italian architect to create a garden adjacent to the palace. Designed in mannerist style and decorated with several fountains and statues, the garden became a meeting place for the humanists of the time. Only a few remains of the garden, subsequently abandoned, can be seen today.
The Bien Parada convent, also ruined, was erected in the 17th century in Asturian baroque style. The convent once housed a Franciscan Faculty of Theology and Music.
A branch of the Western Soria Royal Transhumance Road crossed river Ambroz through the medieval bridge, still standing near the village. The Royal Toll established nearby was the main source of income for Abadía.

Ivan Sache, 19 March 2020

Flag of Abadía

The flag and arms of Abadía, adopted on 3 December 1992 and 11 March 1993 by the Municipal Council and validated on 15 February and 23 March 1993 by the Assessing Council of Honors and Distinctions of the Government of Extremadura, are prescribed by an Order issued on 1 April 1993 by the Government of Extremadura and published on 6 April 1993 in the official gazette of Extremadura, No. 41, pp. 977-978 (text).
The symbols are described as follows:

Flag: Rectangular, in proportions 2:3, made of two equal vertical stripes, at hoist, red with the municipal coat of arms, at fly, chequy white and blue, 3 x 5.
Coat of arms: Chequy argent and azure a fess gules three arches argent. The shield surmounted by a Royal crown closed.

"Chequy argent and azure" is the coat of arms of the Duchy of Alba, featured on many Spanish municipal arms.
The arches represent the Sotofermoso palace (description; video presentation). The monument includes a two-storey mudéjar patio, formed by a double gallery of five arches on each side.

Ivan Sache, 19 March 2020