Adolf Schulten and Tartessos

Tartessos, that enigmatic civilization that gives name to the web and of which today there is still uncertainty about its origin and its end, is still in these times an attraction to the archaeologists and historians who try to decipher their mysteries and to clarify an episode of The history of Antigua of Andalusia.
While still doing studies without getting with the key, we should mention a person who was a pioneer in the studies of this lost civilization. If Troy had his Schliemman, Tartessos aspired to have his own discoverer archaeologist who did not reach the end but became a pioneer. We refer to the also German Adolf Schulten.
Adolf Schulten, was obsessed with the search for Tartessos beginning first by the study of the classical sources like the Bible where the trade was mentioned with Tarsis or Greek sources like Herodotus, Estrabon and other authors who mentioned their trips to Tartessos, beyond the Pillars of Hercules.
Knowing these literary sources, Schulten went to Andalusia convinced of the existence of the mythical kingdom where according to the Greek sources was governed by the King Argantonios who lived more than 120 years and ruled close to a century. The literary sources mentioned that Tartessos was a rich kingdom where silver and copper shone in abundance and where villages like the Phoenicians arrived to establish commercial relations. This kingdom would have a capital that according to literary sources could be at the mouth of the Guadalquivir, others in the middle course or even in some cases near the Sierra Morena by the logic of the abundance of silver in that area.
However, in the knowledge of these Greek literary sources, where the richness of the city was mentioned with important buildings and a commercial port in a river, its search began in the area of the mouth of the Guadalquivir, the Doñana area and the marshes area. Del Odiel, Huelva.
Its search did not give with any mythical city, which it also related to the Disappeared Atlantis, nevertheless found remains of a Roman city in the zone of Huelva capital and although it interpreted the literary texts almost to the letter, it served to create Precedent. Only the World War (began its studies in the 1920s) and the end of funds to finance their excavations ended their dream.
Today, something else has been approached by scientists with discoveries of remains and treasures in the Disappeared Ebora (Sanlúcar de Barrameda) and the Treasure of the Lamb in Seville. Although today the theories are several coming to say that Tartessos was a fusion of local culture with the Phoenician oriental influence, we can not obviate that Schulten gave the shot to this race that is not yet over.
The moment you discover something more about this enigmatic civilization, many will be the homages and recognitions that will have to receive this German scholar who tries to discover a little more of our origin.


The Andalusian banditry

In the eighteenth and XIXI centuries, a well-known phenomenon was given in Andalusia and due to the writings of European and American authors, they have resulted in part of the romantic legend of the region. This phenomenon is the banditry.
At this time of great social differences at the economic level, groups of men flourished, who were engaged in the assault and pillaging of stagecoaches, wagons and other vehicles that ventured to travel the Andalusian roads. Subsequently to these lootings, they took refuge in Sierra Morena, sprinkled with holm oaks, showers, cork oaks and caves that no one ventured to visit because of the dangerousness.
Many of these bandits appeared with the motive of always, profiting at the expense of the neighbor, however others enjoyed the respect and admiration of the people of walk who saw them as heroes in the fight against the established power and the inequalities. They stole the rich to give it to the poor and get the approval of the lower classes. Many of these bandits, however, committed atrocities that they would never forget.

Its areas of action were the paths near Sierra Morena and the betic system. His “modus operandi” as a general rule was similar. An errand was assaulted by a group of several men on horseback, armed with blunderbusses and knives and in some cases hid their faces with handkerchiefs, however some of the most famous did it to face discovered that a for some cases was their downfall as they passed Finally by the gallows.
The end of these bandits used to be when they were already surrounded by justice and the use of reward as an incentive resulted in betrayals that ended with the leader executed and later quartered as an example.
The most famous of the Andalusian bandits were José Ulloa “El Tragabuches” of Arcos de la Frontera (Cádiz), nicknamed because his father ate a fetus of ass in marinade and inherited his nickname, its legend gave place to “the seven children of Écija” although they were not seven nor were of all He started his time of wrongdoing after killing his unfaithful wife, Joaquín Camargo “El Vivillo”, who escaped justice without being able to prove anything although his end was suicide by depression when he became a widower, the next one was probably the most known Do, José María Hinojosa “El Tempranillo”, knowledgeable of the terrain and wrapped in a halo of legend in which he mentions his gratitude to the poor and his exquisite manners to the ladies, also when he stormed errands, never left them in the lurch but with enough money To survive.
Another celebrated bandit was Francisco Rios González “El Perpanas” for the opposite of the previous, his barbarism and his violence led him to banditry only to satisfy his most animal instincts. Of him there are many atrocities. He was a native of Estepa, Seville, and was killed in an ambush by the Guardia Civil.
Diego Corrientes, known as “The Generous Bandit”, was known for his enmity with Don Francisco de Pruna, responsible for the justice of Seville with which he had a hard fight until he was captured and executed. He never had any blood crimes.
The phenomenon of the banditry was released beyond the Pyrenees by European authors such as Washington Irving or Charles Davillier, who got to know in part Andalusia and its history and to give a halo of exaggeration very typical of the Romantic era. This has given rise to a phenomenon in which Andalusian culture itself is immersed and which has finally led to its being known.
We recommend the Museum of Banditry de Ronda (Málaga) as a compulsory visit, and obligatory readings such as “Trip through Andalusia” by Charles Davillier or “The Last Bandits” by José María de Mena.


The mystery of the Island of Saltés

At the mouth of the river Odiel, in front of the city of Huelva, in a protected natural frame and surrounded by marshes where the birds find their own nesting paradise, is a great unknown for many Andalusians.
At the mouth that begins to form a delta  only communicated with the continental land by a small road, we find the island of Saltes. During the Franco era, this island covered by marshes except in summer, was such a place to forget for its infamous function, was a center of concentration for thousands of Republican prisoners captured during the civil war,
However we will not talk about our sad contemporary history, but we will go further in time. In the eastern part of the Odiel estuary, located in a more arid and consolidated area, is the archaeological settlement of Saltes, known in Arab times as Shaltish, an Islamic city probably late Caliphate with a citadel, houses very well urbanized and remains of water wells where it is estimated that an important population could live permanently.
The Alcazaba, whose mysteries were discovered throughout 2015, shows the remains of walls consolidated and of important thickness that gave a role to defend the city itself indicating that it was an important enclave. It is known that since Roman times there were remains of salting and its related industry which implies the importance of this place in this historical and economic context.
Nevertheless, it is curious that the most important remains corresponding to this enclave belong to the Islamic period (approximately century X to the XIII) and remains of Iberian epoch and even protohistórica, taking into account that of Roman time or visigoda of the moment there is little data.
There are many who venture to locate the capital of the mythical Tartessos in this place, on the other hand full of romanticism, nature and why not say it, tragedy if we include the episode previously described in the twentieth century.
At the moment, the government of Andalusia is excavating and rehabilitating this place to open it to the public later, however we must not forget that this enclosure in the case of restoration and opening to the public should be a place of diffusion of the history of region as well as a place of interpretation and learning that must be respected and protected as a witness of Humanity.
Saltes, could become a mythical place depending on the surprises that we will find in the future.

Sorolla and his gardens

jardines de Sorolla.caixaforum
On July 5 was inaugurated the exhibition Sorolla a garden to paint at the Caixa Forum Sevilla. It will remain there until next October 15th.
In it we will discover as Sorolla meets one of his greatest desires: to be able to unite his great passions the painting and his family.
Thanks to his wide vision he will turn the gardens of his house into unique places inspired by all that he had previously visited. Specifically the Andalusian patios that could be known in the cities of Seville and Granada.
Gardens with fountains, tiles, columns, statues, fruit trees and decorative plants as beautiful roses of all colors.
All this is also plasmo on canvases that detail perfectly the patios and gardens that are in the Alhambra of Granada or in the Royal Alcázares of Seville.
The exhibition also details the artist’s sketches, such as the gardens of his house in Madrid.
Sorolla was already internationally consecrated at the time. Having received awards for his works, such as the Grand Prix at the Universal exhibition in Paris.
It is at that time when it decides to begin the creation of an intimate place where to be able to take refuge and to create new works.
In these gardens where the artist rested and pondered we can find different colors, in his numerous plants and flowers that decorate it.
A decoration that will no doubt transport us to the Andalusian gardens, filling all the corners with light and smell.
This and much more can be seen in this great exhibition.