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Villages in Córdoba

Pedro Abad

Villages in Córdoba

Pedro Abad, Vega del Guadalquivir Town

Pedro Abad is situated to the east of the province, in the fertile valley of the Guadalquivir. The rich plains are devoted to agriculture: orchards, cereals and olive trees. The banks of the river offer a riverside forest landscape that contrasts with the rest of the valley.

The village has a privileged location next to the autovia to Madrid and offers a calm and peaceful aspect, consistent with its surrounding gardens and fields of work. Worthy of note are the Parroquia de la Asunción and the Ermita del Santo Cristo.

The municipal boundary and the extension of Pedro Abad have a strategic geographical location. Set in the centre of Valle del Guadalquivir, and surrounded by a meander of the river, allowing the old river traffic by controlling the surrounding lands, giving a great agricultural potential. There are also important commercial and cultural exchanges. The municipality of Pedro Abad was part of the Roman town called SACILI MARTIALIUM. This ancient village was located in what is now called Alcurrucén, being mentioned by Pliny (Naturalis Historia III, 10).

The municipality of Sacili received the status of Roman law by right. The epithet Martialium refers to Mars, god of war. Sacili territories bordered the village of Epora  (now Montoro ) and Solia (in the municipality of El Guijo ). The appearance of a “soliensis”, found in the municipality of El Guijo, signaled the judicial resolution from the court to resolve a boundary dispute between the three municipalities.

Among the numerous archaeological remains unearthed are many from various religious cults, represented in the main by two sites in Sacili by which we can confirm the establishment of foreign cultural stimuli in the new municipalities of Andalusia: one description dedicated to Jupiter Optimus Maximus, and another to the genius of the village of Sacili Martialum, protective spirit of the city. There have also been found two possible portraits of Agrippina Minor, wife of Claudius.

Economic activity in the early days was in agriculture, centred on the cultivation of cereals. There is also evidence of the existence of an OFFECTOR (dyer) in Sacili, so presumably the textile crafts must have been well developed in this village.

Via Augusta, the main thoroughfare of the Betic crossing the municipality of Pedro Abad, from Épora (Montoro) and reaching Alcurrucén, through the cortijos of Santa Ana and Mudapelo, crossed the Guadalquivir and went on to Villafranca de Cordoba .

The origin of Pedro Abad, as we know it today, comes from the conquest, in the Muslim period of Cordoba by King Ferdinand III. Ramirez de las Casas Deza, provided by Osuna and Cabrera in the transcript copies of a manuscript discovered in the chapel of the Holy Christ of the Homeless of Pedro Abad, that the king created in late 1235, in the area now occupied by the village, what then become a camp hospital, where he set up to offer spiritual help from Abbot Peter de Meneses, who arrived with a holy relic, a Crucifix. The various miraculous events attributed to this holy relic led Fernando III command them build a chapel and houses for those who would dwell there, to be free from any lien or tribute.

Linking Abbot Peter de Meneses to the village is of vital importance. The Abbot Peter, of Galician origin, born in Campobecerros, and being pastor at Santa Maria de la Mama, was convinced to participate in the conquest of the southern peninsula, and so moved forward with an image of Christ Crucified, and who had by family heredity, an image which is venerated under the name of the Holy Christ of the Homeless. Both the above and the existence of a fountain in the village, which was part of a fairly busy road in the thirteenth century, would give the original name to the newly created village: Fuente de Per Abad, as recorded in a document dated 1272, (referring to his church, which belonged to the archdeaconry of Córdoba, mentioning the place as Fuente de Per Abad), where this name appears.

In the early days the village was on the main route from the east of the Guadalquivir Valley and came under the jurisdiction of Algallarín, however, because of the growing importance acquired by the said miracles and extraordinary events which occurred there, the village would point soon acquire its own municipality.

By 1530 Pedro Abad had 146 residents, with the town council separated from Cordoba during the late Middle Ages. Only once (1467), during the civil war between King Henry IV and Prince Alfonso was the village given over, for a short period of time, to the jurisdiction of Diego Fernandez de Cordoba II, I Count of Cabra.

In 1564 Pedro Abad was incorporated into the Marquis of El Carpio , being under seigniorial jurisdiction. The village was then sold to Don Luis Mendez de Haro, as the royal treasury was facing serious economic problems. This sale would provoke strong opposition from members of the Council of Córdoba. Meanwhile, the demographic trajectory was rising and in 1564 there were 234 residents, and in 1591 the figure was 307 residents. But the upward trend was frustrated in the period of the seventeenth century due to epidemics.

In 1571, there were living in Pedro Abad fifty families of New Christians who had been deported by Philip II, with a total of 140 people. Most of these families came from the Almeria towns of Sorbas and Lubrin, belonging to the Marquis of El Carpio.

Economic activity of the period was dominated by agriculture. Most of the land was dry and the main crop was cereals (90%), during this period the cultivation of olives saw a strong expansion. The waters of the Guadalquivir were used for the irrigation of orchards, which covered the needs of the population and horticultural crops, together with undeveloped commercial activities.

Among popular religious traits were local devotions and the movement of the brotherhood, highlighting the image of the Holy Christ of the Homeless, which aroused intense religious fervor, when a series of prayers were offered up to implore his protection in difficult times due to epidemics and periods of deprivation .

The strategic location of Pedro Abad, crossing El Camino Real in Madrid, and its proximity to Córdoba capital, partly explains the political significance of the village during the contemporary period. Many foreign travelers recalled their views on the village, thanks to such a privileged position, especially from the first quarter of the nineteenth century when bolder “ochocentistas” bandoleros had set their sights on the surrounding region.

The sale of properties belonging to welfare centres for liberalism, including the Charity Hospital, meant an initial collapse of the structure of necessary care of the sick, given the polarized social structure. Perhaps because of this situation, the tenets of militant workers’ movements in the city had a fertile field for expansion. Pedro Abad must therefore be regarded as one of the fundamental cores of provincial social unrest that emerged during the early twentieth century. For example, the well-known activist Salvador Cordon and his partner Elizabeth Hortensia, among many other propagandists of the period, were frequently cited as being in the village during the momentous year of 1918.

As unifying core principles of trade unionists we quote the Union of Workers in Various Trades and Professions, and once it was suspended, as having been responsible for “social crime”, leading to the “Sociedad Nueva Aurora”.

The option of integration and social twinning doctrinally sponsored by the Catholic Circle of Workers was barely significant to offset the weight of unionism emerging, these being founded on May 1, 1876, and failing to survive even a decade.

The roots of the socialist political options which were delayed until 1920 were not the first socialist group. During the Civil War there was the immediate triumph of the nationalist forces during the early days of military sedition, though, after July 21, 1936 Pedro Abad was occupied by Republicans. During the months following the skirmishes which occurred, and reprisals by both sides, until the 22nd December 1936 the nationalist column headed by Luis Redondo managed to take the village with tactics which surrounded the Republican troops stationed in El Carpio.

Pedro Abad Monuments

Nuestra Señora de la Asuncion Parish Church, fourteenth century.
Santo Cristo Chapel,
Sagrado Corazon Church, near the birthplace of Santa Rafaela María.

Alcurrucén El Cortijo, prehistoric.


Town Hall (Old Granary)
Arab Mosque, 1970.
Casas (library, gothic facade and other red stone masonry).

Pedro Abad Gastronomy

Morcilla de animas (blood sausage) or Morcón. Cachorreñas soups.  Cod with clam sauce. Matanzas Casserole. Sweets: Cakes “Candelaria”. Manta (thin cake layer, covered with pastry cream, rolled on itself, sprinkled with icing sugar, tied with a blue or pink ribbon, and given to the newborn). Bisque. Perrunas. Butter cakes.


Out of Cordoba. Continue to: E-5 / A-4. Pass near San Antonio. Take the exit towards: Exit 368 – Pedro Abad – Adamuz . Follow signs to Pedro Abad.

Distances from Pedro Abad

Morente 7km
Alcolea 24 km
Cordoba 33 km
Adamuz 13 km
El Carpio 9 km
Montoro 11km
Bujalance 12 km
Algallarin 20 km
Villafranca de Cordoba 11 km

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