Countries<Spain<Comunidad Valenciana<Macastre< Castillo Macastre

Castillo Macastre(Macastre)

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The term of Macastre has been populated since ancient times as evidenced by the prehistoric remains found in shelters and caves.

Remains of Iberian pottery have also been found. Later it would be the Roman domination that would be imposed, as attested by some remains of the castle.

The oldest documentary sources of Macastre speak to us first of the incursions made by the Cid, around the years 1024 and following, in them the castle of Macastre, appears as a tributary place. Later, between the years 1104, 1122 and 1134, Alfonso I, the Battler, charged pariahs to the Almoravids of the place.

The qualification of "castra sive villas" that offers the Repartimiento de Macastre, supposes an equivalence between both terms, reason why before the Reconquest, Macastre perhaps was, like Buñol and Montroy, a castle-population. The decline of the population at the foot of the fortress must have taken place after the Reconquest, turning Macastre into a typical feudal castle, object of repeated alienations.

Macastre was donated, along with Montroy and Buñol, by Don Jaime I to Don Rodrigo de Lizana, in 1238, for his services. Three years later it passed to Hugo Folcadier, of the Order of St. John of Jerusalem. It passed through various owners until it returned to the crown, through James II who acquired it from Bernardo Sarrió, treasurer of the Court, who, when accused of improper retention of money, undertook to pay the Crown with the delivery of the towns of Buñol, Macastre, Siete Aguas, Yátova and Alborache. In April 1315, the towns of La Hoya paid homage to King James II.

Due to economic and political difficulties in the government of the kingdom, they forced the King to sell again to D. Berenguer Mercader, a family that since 1425 with Alfonso V, until 1836, the year in which it returned to the Crown, is linked to the region of La Hoya de Buñol.

Apparently Macastre remained Muslim in its entirety, since after the conquest there was no Christian repopulation.

The most modern stage of occupation of the castle coincides with the time of the expulsion of the Moors. In later decades, the fortress fell into disuse and was only occupied occasionally.

It is located to the southwest of the town, on a prominent hill, located at the end of a chain of very eroded hills, with hardly any vegetation cover. The enclosure adapts to the irregularities of the terrain, presenting on its southern part, a pronounced cut, facing the road from Macastre to Cortés de Pallás, and on its northern part, a much gentler slope. Visually it communicated with the castles of Buñol and Turís.

The castle is a plateau of elongated shape with two towers at the ends, the west end is the largest and best preserved in height, missing the corner facing the interior of the enclosure. The easternmost one is smaller and only preserves the east and north walls. It is possible to follow the route of the wall to the north, to the south it is more deteriorated. The excavation revealed a set of structures that had undergone numerous repairs and periods of abandonment that allow us to recognize the existence of at least three successive levels of occupation.

The ceramics collected come from fills resulting from the collapse of structures: glazed pieces with green and manganese decoration on white cover, cobalt blue, bowls with green glaze, others with decoration of manganese bands on white cover and several fragments of common ceramics with decoration in manganese bands.

After several archaeological campaigns, the following actions are currently being carried out: the creation of a pedestrian itinerary, the creation of accesses, debris removal and reinforcement of masonry slopes, debris removal and partial dismantling for reconstruction of the vault that remains in the main tower; in the outer perimeter area, from the moat to the northwestern area of the necropolis, several accumulations of debris from previous interventions will be removed.

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