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Weekly Weather Forecast for Valencia

Splendour of Valencia

During the XV century, Valencia lives a great demographic, economic and cultural splendor. In the middle of the century the population of the city was about 75,000 inhabitants, converting Valencia in the most important Christian city of the Iberian Peninsula.

In 1419 the king Alfonso the Magnanimous founded the «Archive of the Kingdom of Valencia» and the economic power of the city in the Mediterranean was comparable to that of Venice, Genoa, and Marseille. In this century the Tower of Miguelete was finished, the Cathedral was widened and The Quart Towers, The Silk Exchange, the Generalitat Palace and the shipyards of the Grau were built.  Two members of the Borja family, Alfonso de Borja and Roderic de Borja who were later the Popes Calixto III and Alexander VI, resp., were valencian diocese bishops. Jordi de San Jordi, Ausias March, Joan Rois of Corella, Joanot Martorell and Isabel de Villena were some of the distinguished writers at that time.

In 1456 after an assault on the Moorish quarter, the district was closed and never reopened again, causing the abandonment of the city by the Muslims. The Catholic monarchs travelled to Valencia for the first time in 1481 and the people gave them an ostentatious reception. At that time the authoritarianism of Ferdinand combined with the frequency of epidemics, caused a dangerous and growing social unrest. The prosperity of Valencia was still remarkable – for example the citizen of Valencia Lluís de Santangel lent to the Catholic monarchs money to finance the voyage of Columbus.

Despite the outstanding splendor of the city during the entire century at the end of this the guilds were threatened by capitalism and the depersonalization of human relationships. The proletariat was composed of Moors who hated the plebeians and the social crisis could erupt at any time. In 1517 Valencia suffered a terrible inundation by one of the largest floods of the River Turia, in 1519 the plague returned to hitting the city and in 1520 there was a rebellion of the Germanias because an incident without importance. The term of the Germanias in 1521 with the victory of the aristocracy indicates in Valencia the end of the Middle Age.