'A Little History'
The first vestiges of human settlements on these lands have been dated back to the Iron Age. But it wouldn’t be until centuries later, first with the Roman domination and then with the Arabic, that the place acquires weight as a stable settlement. From the Romans ,archaeological remains have been found on a hill called “las peñas” and from the Arabs comes the name of “Medina”. The oldest document in which the settlement was mentioned (as “Metina”) is a donations letter of 1107. Back then it was already a privileged location due to its extremely fast growth after the repopulation ordered by Alfonso VI, and due to its defensive disposition (the village back then was on the right-hand bank of the Zapardiel River, where the Castle stands today). In 1258 Alfonso X confirms Medina’s charter. Fernando IV proclaims the Courts of Medina for the first time, which will sit in session throughout the XIV and XV centuries. Since then and until today, practically all of the Spanish kings or governors have at some point passed through the streets of the Town.
The international renown of Medina arrived with the Fairs, and left with them. But that splendour was not free of its frightening moments: in 1492 an accidental fire razed 260 buildings to the ground (as a result, the “Fire Regulations” of the Catholic Queen were born).
The international renown of Medina arrived with the Fairs, and left with them.
But that splendour was not free of its frightening moments: in 1492 an accidental fire razed 260 buildings to the ground (as a result, the “Fire Regulations” of the Catholic Queen were born).
Since the beginning of the XVII century and up until the arrival of the train in the mid XIX century, the locality slowly languished. Only printing in Medina perhaps an inheritance from those magnificent ancient scribes) upheld the good name of the place.
But a new rebirth arrived with the current century: Medina settled into modernity, recovering its importance in terrestrial communications between the south and north-east of the peninsula, both by train and by road. The services sector, agriculture and transformation industry (above all that of furniture) became the economic engine room.
The population census went from 2.760 inhabitants in 1850, to the more than 20.000 in current times.
Medina del Campo is one of the three head towns of the Judicial District of the province and, after the capital, is the most important town in Valladolid.
Economic wealth – as with any location – has gone hand in hand with artistic and monumental wealth.
It was during the XV and XVI centuries that the majority of the civil, religious and military buildings of the Town were built. Although over time some important constructions were lost (the walls and their doors; some palaces; a long dozen of churches, convents and monasteries...) you can still see a good part of that past architectural splendour.
The old quarter was declared a historical artistic environment in 1978.