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Roman age

Roman age

The origin of the urban center of Algarinejo dates back to Roman times, according to the findings obtained in the archaeological excavations carried out in 1990 in Huerto Megías, where the remains of a villae (Roman rural house) were detected, from the 1st and 4th centuries dedicated to to agricultural production. However, since Algarinejo shares territory and history with the Poniente region of Granada, it is very likely that previously, this same place was occupied by Iberians, specifically Bastetanos, a people who lived in villages protected by walls, both on the plateaus of the sierra as in the depressions of the vegas, where they grew cereals and traded with wine and oil.

Recent excavations on Avenida de la Constitución have revealed remains of walls and pavements of an Ibero-Roman building, as well as several burials corresponding to a necropolis whose chronology has not yet been dated exactly.

The form of settlement in Roman times is the villae.

They are small Roman settlements that constituted an independent unit of agricultural exploitation, and that must have taken advantage, in turn, of primitive Bastetan settlements. The villae would be the precedents of the Arab farmhouses, and of the farmhouses and farmhouses that are currently distributed by the hundreds throughout the territory of Algarinejo. In addition to the farmhouses, in Algarinejo there are many vestiges inherited from the Romans that still exist: mills, waterwheels, ovens, wells, ditches, ponds and mines. These Roman societies complemented their agricultural and livestock activity with some craft industries, among which iron mining stands out.

But, livestock was the activity that reached the greatest peak under Roman rule, establishing an important network of cattle trails that connected the small vicus -groups of rural dwellings- with each other, located at the crossroads and in the paths near the vegas. The Real Loja-Priego path is heir, without a doubt, to this Roman layout. Currently there are many vestiges of this ancient network of livestock trails that crosses the municipality, such as sections of road, important towns, rafts or pools that are still in use even today.