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San Martín de Valdeiglesias (Municipality, Community of Madrid, Spain)

Last modified: 2016-05-22 by ivan sache
Keywords: san martín de valdeiglesias |
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Flag of San Martín de Valdeiglesias - Image by Ivan Sache, 25 July 2015


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Presentation of San Martín de Valdeiglesias

The municipality of San Martín de Valdeiglesias (8,516 inhabitants in 2014; 11,550 ha) is located in the extreme south-west of the Community of Madrid, on the border with Castilla y León (Province of Ávila) and Castilla-La Mancha (Province of Toledo).

San Martín de Valdeiglesias is overlooked by the castle of Coracera (presentation), which stands on a small hill located west of the historical downtown. In 1430, the Cistercian monks who owned the village asked Álvaro de Luna, Constable of Castile and favourite of King John II, to suppress a peasant's uprising. Luna purchased the domain in 1434, paying 30,000 maravedies, and built the castle to highlight his power and protect his domains. Successively owned by the Dukes of the Infantado, Gonzalo Chacón and Juan Antonio Corcuera, the castle was ruined at the end of the War of independence. The Barons of Sacro Lirio restored the castle, transforming it in a leisure residence. The heirs of the last owner, Juan Fernández Ganza, sold the castle partly to the municipality and to a private owner, who eventually established in 2003 the Fundación Castillo de la Coracera to manage the castle and preserve the town's historical heritage.
The castle is made of a rectangular donjon of 27 m in height surrounded by a wall protected by three towers of 12 m in height. Inside the wall is a chapel with a beautiful facade in Renaissance style.

San Martín de Valdeiglesias is the proud birth town of the professional cyclist Pablo Lastras García (b. 1976). Lastras won two regional tours (Tour of Burgos, 2003; Tour of Andalusia, 2008) but is among the cyclists who won stages in the three big tours (Giro de Italia, 2001; Vuelta a España, 2002 [two stages], 2011; Tour de France, 2003).

Ivan Sache, 25 July 2015


Symbols of San Martín de Valdeiglesias

The flag of San Martín de Valdeiglesias (photo, photo, photo, photo) is prescribed by a Decree adopted on 25 June 2009 by the Government of the Community of Madrid and published on 24 July 2009 in the official gazette of the Community of Madrid, No. 174, p. 12 (text) and on 16 September 2009 in the Spanish official gazette, No. 224, p. 77,553 (text).
The flag, originally adopted on 11 August 2008 by the Municipal Council, was validated on 17 February 2009 by the Heraldry Assessors (Royal Academy "Matritense" of Heraldry and Genealogy) and on on 6 March 2009 by the Royal Academy of History.
The flag is described as follows:

Flag: In proportions 2:3. Tierced in base, double in the middle, blue, white and green, charged in the center with the municipal coat of arms.

The coat of arms of San Martín de Valdeiglesias (presentation) is prescribed by Decree No. 3,679, adopted on 26 December 1975 by the Spanish Government and published on 29 January 1976 in the Spanish official gazette, No. 25, p. 1,930 (text).
The coat of arms, approved by the Royal Academy of History, is described as follows:

Coat of arms: Gules a crescent argent reverted. A bordure azure charged with seven chapels argent. The shield surmounted by a Royal crown closed.

The crescent is taken from the canting arms of Álvaro de Luna (in Spanish, "Moon"), Constable of Castile and favourite of King John II, who purchased in 1434 San Martín de Valdeiglesias and several neighbouring domains from the Cistercian monastery of Santa María de Valdeiglesias (today ruined, located in Pelayos de la Presa). After Luna's disgrace and execution in 1453, all his goods that had not been confiscated by the crown were transferred to his widow, then to his son and to his niece, María de Luna. After her marriage with Iñigo López de Mendoza, San Martín de Valdeiglesias was transferred to the Dukes of the Infantado, who ruled it until the end of the feudal system.
The chapels on the bordure represent the churches (iglesias) for which the valley (val) was named. The tradition says that there were seven such churches, although their number was never accurately recorded; there is, however, significant documentation on the erection of chapels by colonies of anachoretes or hermits.

Ivan Sache, 25 July 2015


 
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