Arjona, Campiña Region
Arjona is located to the West of the province, to the South of Andújar, in a landscape planted with olive trees.
From the most remote ancient times the strategic position of this place has been made good use of it by the man. So much so that in the middle of the Middle Age, in the site of Arjona was located one of the most complex fortified enclosures in the peninsula. The leading defensive bastion has three lines of walls, twenty two towers, two albarrana towers, a fortress, a castle, a well… you can observe remains of the fortification, such as the fragments of the wall and the claustrum in the Paseo de los Mártires.
The first village of the Copper-Bronze Age (3.000 B.C.) is located in which nowadays you can find the square of Santa María. The existence of an Iberian oppidum is also documented, and over its remains, Romans erected new defences.
The municipality of Urgavo or Urgao Alba is identified with the Roman Age. This village, together with Iliturgi, Isturgi and Obulco, would receive from Cesar a privileged state after the battle of Muda. According to some investigators the roots of the imperial worship is stated in several inscriptions and in the existences of temples devoted to Augusto and Plotina.
During the Islamic age, it is identified with Qal´at Aryuna, in which after the conquest the lineage of Banu Bayila was settled. The village took part in the final fights of the Emirate, a moment in which its walls were tightened. In Arjona was born the King Alhamar in 1195, founder of the Nasrid Dinasty, King of Granada and builder of the Alhambra.
Fernando III took the town in 1244 and it was granted the royal status. Some years after (1284), the king Don Sáncho gave the title of Town governed by the Fuero de Toledo.
In the XIV century it was part of lordship of Condestable de Castilla Ruy López Dávalos. This lordship passed around several hands until Mr Álvaro de Luna changed it for other to the Maestre de Calatrava.
In 1628 human remains were discovered, disinterred with a great ritual by the bishop of Jaén, Baltasar Moscoso and Sandoval and it was built the Sanctuary devoted to the martyrs Bonoso and Maximiano. Some of these remains can be seen in the chapel of the Martyrs.
In 1891 the regent queen María Cristina gave to Arjona the title of Town and to its Town Hall the treatment of Excelentísimo.
Church of Santa María, XVII century. It was built over the ruins of the Arab castle, we preserve a well.
Church of Carmen. The tower dates from the Mudejar age.
Church and Tower of de San Martín.
Sanctuary of the Santos of the Sagradas Reliquias. Inside it we can observe the relics of the martyrs Bonoso and Maximiliano, executed by Diocleciano.
Church of San Juan, XV and XVI centuries. We can emphasize its Mudejar coffered ceiling.
Arjona Archaeological Sites
Sites of Las Herrerías.
Hills of Garbón and Hardón. Remains of the Roman village called Urgao were found.
Arab ruins of the ancient castle and well.
Hermitages in the area around the village.
Old quarter area.
Square of the Coches and Fountain of Los Leones.
Well of El Moro.
Callejón de las Brujas.
Canto, gazpacho (cold Andalusian soup), salmorejo (soup consisting of tomato and bread), fried breadcrumbs, stew of beans, soggy rice, flamenquines, snails, olives, sweet oatmeal porridges, bread rolls of wine, crespillos (circular crackers), croutons, Easter pies, sponges of the saints and products of Christmas.
Arjona – How to get there
You have to exit Jaén and continue by the road J-14. In the roundabout you have to take the exit 2 and continue by the road E-902 / A-44 towards Bailén – Madrid. Continue by the Motorway A-316 and continue towards Torredelcampo – Córdoba. Take the exit towards Exit 60 – Jaén (Centre) – Fuerte del Rey – Andújar. Continue by the Motorway A-311 towards Fuerte del Rey. Cross Lahiguera and continue by the road JV-2301 and continue until you get Arjona.
Distances from Arjona
Jaén 36 km
Lopera 17 km
Arjonilla 8 km
Porcuna 15 km
Escañuela 9 km
Lahiguera 9 km
Fuerte del Rey 20 km
Torredonjimeno 26 km
Torre del Campo 29 km
Villanueva de la Reina 18 km