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History

Nerja's foundation date is unknown, but it seems that it existed as a town in the times of Aberramán III. The first written news about Nerja is by the arabic poet Ibn Sadí, a traveller who passed through in the year 917 and who refers that it was a hamlet as big as a town, surrounded by leafy markets, admiration contemplated by all. It was the era of tissue and silk textile industry which reached to worldwide fame and splendour. The Arabs gave it a name, Naricha or Narija (abundant spring). If formed a part in the reign of Rayya and the population settled under the protection of his castle, whose remains can still be observed in the angle that forms the road to Frigiliana in the crossroad with the local in the quarry. Before this date there is no reference of settlements in the area that nerja occupies, nevertheless, certain theories assume a form of human habitat during the Upper Paleolithic, not only in the so called Nerja Caves, but also near the city centre, therefore a possible settlement in Roman times -a hypothesis derived from the closeness of the Roman town of Detunda (Maro). Nerja was Christian sooner than the Duke of Nájera conquered Vélez. The Muslim population could remain with all the properties. In June 1500, to ennoble the town of Vélez, favour was given to all the places in its juristiction, castles and fortresses and between them, the place of Nerja. After the Mudéjar uprising, and leaving, Doña Juana sent for resettlement of the old Christians, who occupied the abandonned dwellings and granted them to be free of paying taxes and of all other services, petty theft or impositions. Priviledges that were confirmed by Philip III and Philip IV. At the end of the 18th Century, Nerja had a town council formed with two mayors, three M.P.s and an elected representative starting the municipal independance at the start of the 19th Century.

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