León has been selected by Roberto Amati in relation to the real history of european integration, then enlisted in the CITY OR CIVITAS category, accompanied by own fact SHEET useful to the comprehension, completed of historical MAPS AND IMAGES or with a direct linking to the related Blog contents dedicated to the entire history of european integration and the future of Europe.

León civitas

León is one of the most ancient cities of the history of European integration, signed in great part by Christianity. The Civitas León was founded in 29 BC by Romans, near a rich gold mine in the Cantabria region on the site of a Castra built by Legio VI Victrix to fight the local Celts people, submitted to Roman power and first inhabitants of the civitas. At the end of the Cantabrian war, León became the seat of Legio VII Gemina (recruited from the Hispanics people) and was connected to the civitas of Lugo and Astorga through the Asturica Burdigalam way going to Bordeaux.

Within the reform of Augustus (see Roman Empire), León was part of the Hispania Tarraconensis province voted to the militar control of the whole region and the gold transport, with a permanent Legio that gave the actual name to he city. With the reform of Constantine I (see Christian Empire), León was included in the imperial Catholic Diocesis of Hispania and in the new Province of Gallaecia, that operated the evangelization of northern Portugal and the actual regions of Galizia and Astures.

At the falling of Western Roman Empire, the city was included in the Suebi Reign and involved in the fight against the Arian and Priscillianism eresy, then persecuted by the Catholics Church of Rome and conquered by Visigoths in 586 AD, who saved the city and built more fortifications useful to resist the Arabs invasion in early VIII century AD. There started the "Reconquista" war of the Perez dinasty who repopulated the ancient civitas and made it the capital of their Reign of Leòn since 856 AD: some yaers after it became capital of kingdom of Asturias, too, under the personal rule of same kings, way-station for pilgrims on the way to Compostela (it is still today!) and the city had the "Fueru de Llión", an important royal letter of privileges for civitas. In that period Leòn got the first bischopric seat and became the most important of the Christian cities in Spain! In 1188 AD, the king Alfonso IX gathered the "Cortes de León", the written documentary corpus recognised by the UNESCO as "cradle" of parliamentarism" in Europe.

In Middle Age era, Leòn became an industrial centre and an important market for traders and artisans, who got the access to the municipal government so that the city had consolidated as one of the 13 cities in the Meseta enjoying the right to vote at the "Cortes of Castile", after the joining of the kingdoms in the Castile&Leòn Crown, by following its destiny until today. Starting from the 16th century, the economic and demographic decline continued until the modern era and the city remained controlled by a reduced set of noble families by means of the regimientos y regidurías, supporters of the military coup d'état that market the beginning of the Spanish Civil War in León on 20th July 1936 with the putschist military officers. Fortunately the main buildings and the several christian churches of Leòn have been conserved, such as Leonese customs and the Semana Santa ("Holy Week") yearly event featuring numerous processions through the centre of the city.

León is located on the French Way of the Camino de Santiago enlisted in the UNESCO Wordl Heritage and a main touristic destination of Spain and the whole Europe. Nowadays, León is a medium size town in the north-west of Spain, within the Castile and Leòn autonomous community, whose patron is Saint Froilàn a bishops who evangelized the region after the Arabs islamic occupation.

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