To think that the native population of Majorca was murdered or sold as slaves and the island was populated by Catalans it's totally false and ridiculous.
Especially knowing that at this time it is documented that there were no people to repopulate many of the conquered areas of Muslims in Catalonia, and that they were still trying to repopulate Christian areas.
The repopulation of these areas of Catalonia coincides with the persecution of the Cathars of Occitania (Albigensian Crusade) and the defeat of the Crown of Aragon in the Battle of Muret, in 1213.
During this period, a large number of Occitan fleeing their lands and seeking refuge in Catalonia, among other places.
This excerpt is taken from the same book, page 136.
The Catalans could hardly repopulate the Balearic Islands and Valencia, when they had no population to repopulate Catalonia itself.
But perhaps the most absurd and ridiculous of all, is that these supposed repopulators came from the Empordà coast.
An Empordà coast where were still in force "the bad uses" with which the feudal lord prevented or made it difficult for his servants to abandon their lands.
After the Battle of Muret, a large number of Occitan people leave their territory, many of them persecuted by heretics (Catharism). Its main destination will be the Crown of Aragon, participating in the Christian repopulation of this entire area. And through what will later be Catalonia many arrive in Majorca.
In this fragment of a work by the historian Sergi Grau Torras (Historiografía del catarismo en Cataluña, pag.28), tells us how Pope Gregory IX, urges the heretics of Majorca to acquit themselves to abjure their mistakes. Only 10 years after the Christian conquest of Mallorca.
In the Middle Ages they had a bad habit of burning heretics alive. If I were one of these Occitan refugees, obviously I will NOT say that I come from Occitania, I will say that I am Catalan, that I come from the land of the new lords of Majorca, Catalonia.
I will easily imitate the dialect that is spoken in Barcelona or Gerona because they are Occitan dialects very similar to those spoken in Occitania. In a time as turbulent as that time, who could prove otherwise?.
However our "dear" UIB professors, this Catalan University that they have planted in the middle of Majorca seems to know without any doubt the origin of those who arrived in Majorca in the thirteenth century, when in the twenty-first century people from Africa come to us and we are unable to know from which country they are.
So that to the numerous native population that remained in Majorca, although the Catalan fantasy tells us otherwise, the new arrivals were added, especially from Occitania.
There are several versions about the repopulation of Majorca. The official version says that the majorcan Muslims were killed or sold as slaves, and the islands were populated mostly with Catalans.
This is simply a lie. It is enough to read Marsilio's chronicle , where he tells us that Xuaip and 16,000 people who were with him receive papers signed and sealed by James I, with the right to populate the land. And what can we say about Ben Abet and his followers, both in the " Book of Acts " and in " The Chronicle of Desclot ", as in the " Kitab Tarih Mayurqa " (Arab version of the Christian conquest), tells us of the support received by Christians from a part of the natives of Majorca.
We must think that before the arrival of the Christian troops of James I, the island was practically in a civil war.
On the one hand there was the native population, and on the other hand there were the almohads, who were a Muslim fundamentalist sect from North Africa, who ruled the Balearic Islands at that time.
We could even make a parallel of the situation that was lived in Majorca at that time with the Almohad fanatics, and the current situation in Syria with the fanatics of the ISIL (Islamic State).
Does the Catalanis version want to tell us that, as a reward for their collaboration, they were massacred or sold as slaves?
Best serious studies, such as those made by the historian and former professor of the University of the Balearic Islands Álvaro Santamaría, tell us about something very different. According to his work, in Majorca there would still be a large native population, and only 39% of the settlers came from what is now Catalonia.(That they came from Catalonia does not mean that they were Catalan. As I have already mentioned above, many of the new settlers are Occitan fled from their territory and arrived in Mallorca through Catalonia).
The rest would come from the south of France, Italy, Aragon, and to a lesser extent from other places.
In addition, at that time the southern Catalonia, conquered the Muslims, was still being populated, and only 8 years after Majorca, Valencia was conquered (here we can see a map with the dates of the conquests), and needed repopulators too. Where did so many Catalans come from, if it is documented that Catalonia was still being repopulated?
If we put ourselves in the skin of the peasants who had to repopulate Majorca, we thought that the only way to access the island was by boat, and the boats of that time, were not the ones we have now, which takes you from Barcelona to Palma in 4 or 8 hours. The expedition of James I, took 3 days to arrive in Majorca, with storm included.
We must think that many had not seen the sea in his life, without forgetting all the superstitions of the time (sea monsters, giant octopi ...). Why would they embark, when they had other options on the mainland?
The vision that the possible repopulators of Majorca could have, with soldiers fleeing of hurry of the island by an epidemic of plague and the presence still of rebellious Muslims in the mountains, that passed so much hunger that they ate the Christians who were able to kill, in addition to the threat on the part of the Moorish king of Tunisia to invade the island, turning it into a mousetrap for the possible settlers.
This was not, precisely, the most desirable vision to undertake the adventure.
This does not mean that new settlers did not come, but yes, much less than the official version tells us.
We are talking about the feudal era, where the peasants were attached to the land that the feudal lord owned, and were considered simply as part of it.
For this reason we should not be surprised if in the "Distribution Book" there is no mention of the Muslim peasant population, it was simply considered part of the land.
To the lords who obtained land in "the distribution", it should have been of little use to them to have large land possessions, if they did not have serfs or slaves, that they should cultivate it and pay them taxes.
Santamaría tells us in his work, as after the Christian conquest there was a massive conversion of the native population to Christianity, and they were even forced to stay for 3 days of reflection before being converted. Probably never ceased to be Christians.
Remember that before the arrival of James I troops, in the Balearic Islands ruled a Muslim fundamentalist sect from Africa, the Almohads. In documents found in the Iberian Peninsula, we can see how the Almohads forced the Christian population to convert to Islam, under penalty of death. We could find a parallel between this fundamentalist sect and the current members of ISIL (Islamic State), which sow terror in Syria.
In these same documents they describe how the population feigned their conversion to Islam, while in private they remained faithful to their Christian faith.
So in Majorca the same thing must have happened, and once the Christian conquest triumphed, a significant number of natives, who were forced to convert to Islam, publicly professed their Christianity.
We must also remember that this Almohad sect was only 27 years in Majorca (1202 - 1229), but as tells us in Kitab Tarih Mayurqa (document found in the Maghreb, is the Arabic version of the Christian conquest of Majorca) , it was not until 1212, after his defeat in the Navas de Tolosa, that a significant number of almohades flee towards Majorca, which is when the harassment of the majorcan population begins.
Once Christianity took power on the islands, the native Christians were able to freely practice their faith again, and took their Christian images and symbols from the place where they had been hidden.
It is said that the Virgin of Lluch (the original was a Paleochristian carving), was unearthed after the Christian conquest, the current Virgin is a different Gothic image from the original. The original could be a seated virgin, similar to the Virgin of Lloseta or the Virgin of Sant Llorens, who belong to the Romanesque. Both were also found after the Christian conquest.
The central pillar , which supports the main altar of the Cathedral of Palma, of Byzantine origin, was also found after the Christian conquest.
A copy of the "Distribution Book" is written in Catalan language (in any case an incipient Catalan language, if we want to call it Catalan language), another in Latin and another in Arabic language.
Why in Arabic anguage, if they were all dead or slaves? Or is it that what Catalanism tells us is false?
The answer is obviously YES. The copy in Arabic language was possibly for those natives who, understanding or not the language of the conquerors, could not read it and needed the property deed (the distribution book), also in Arabic. This means that there were natives who also received land or simply stayed with what they already had.
Someone can explain to us how it is that the Christian troops, who went to liberate the Islands from the enemies of Christianity and in "name of God Our Lord". That they have finished with the population of the Island or they have enslaved. One of the documents of the distribution of the booty, precisely the original codex, is written in Arabic language.
But that is not all, if we read this fragment of the Arabic codex, corresponding to the distribution of the portion of the Count of Rosselló, Nuño Sanchez, we can read something surprising:
We can deduce, that contrary to what some historians affirm about the post conquest, converts to Christianity do not occupy the lowest echelons of society, but are part, from the beginning, of the administration and government of the island.
In the "the distribution book" , page 15, mention is made of Ben Abet ..
This population was joined by the population arriving from the Iberian Peninsula, France and Italy mainly.
The population that came after the Christian conquest, mixed with the large native population, although some want to make us believe otherwise.
The population that came from the current Catalonia contributed 39% of the total of repopulators (according to the historian Álvaro Santamaría ), if we think that the native population could represent 50% of the total. This means that the population from the current Catalonia would be less than 20% of the total, which was gradually arriving in a period of more than 100 years. Which caused that the repopulators arrived from Catalonia and other places, were reabsorbed by the Majorcan society.
In the work of Professor Álvaro Santamaría we can read:
In a work by Gabriel Jover (University of Girona) and Ricard Soto (University of Barcelona), "Feudal colonization and organization of the territory, Majorca, 1230-1350", on page 17 (in small print), we have interesting information on the demography of Catalonia and Majorca.
|Catalans 39,7%||Occitans 24,26%||Italians 16,19%|
|Aragonese 7,35%||Navarrese 5,88%||French 4,42%|
|Castellans 1,47%||Flemish 0,73%|
To get as close as possible to the truth, we must read the documents closest to the narrated facts.
In a translation of the book by Pedro Marsilio , a monk who came to speak with descendants of majorcan Muslims converted to Christianity "baptizati", in 1311. In his text we can read the agreement reached by James I and Xuaip, head of the Muslim resistance that remained in the mountains, in which James I grants that Xuaip and 4 of his lineage, obtain properties, weapons and horses, and 16,000 people who with him were entitled to populate the land.
In a work by G. Rosselló Bordoy (Notes on the Conquesta de Majorca) we can read:
And what can we say about Ben Abet , who according to the chronicle of Bernat Desclot, could have between 4,000 and 6,000 followers, who helped the Christians of James I, not only with food supplies, but also became a fifth column within of the walls of Medina Mayurca, informing of the plans of Abu Yayah, governor almohade of Majorca. Or capturing those who left the city to encourage outside Muslims to rebel against Christians.
If we add the large number of Muslims who remained to work the land as slaves, and that with the passage of time they converted to Christianity, we can speak of between 25,000 and 30,000 natives.
100 years after the conquest, the population surveyed was between 50,000 and 60,000 people, taking into account the population growth in these more than 100 years and that the people who arrived did so throughout this period of time, made the new Arrivals could be reabsorbed by the native population.
Repopulate means to populate an uninhabited place. Maybe we should talk about immigration, and about this immigration, how many were Catalans?
To answer that question, it would be enough to simply look around us, and ask ourselves a simple question.
Where is Catalonia in Majorca?.
In other words, if we go to Spanish America, we see Spanish footprint everywhere.
- Cities with names of those from here (Guadalajara, Madrid, Granada ...).
- The architecture in many cases is Spanish colonial.
- Regional costumes are based in those of Spain.
- And the language, it is simply Spanish.
- There is no town or city with the name of another Catalan town or city, the names of the towns are from the time of the Moors or before them.
- There is no Catalan architecture (just see the peasant possessions of Majorca or Ibiza).
- The typical peasant dress of Majorca and Menorca has nothing to do with Catalan.
- And the language is neither Catalan nor has it ever been.
It is part of a group of languages (which we could say occitan language), which run through the Spanish and French Mediterranean basins, including the Provencal language.
The repopulation process will last about 100 years. As Professor Santamaría tells us in his work:
In the seventeenth century (1609), a significant number of majorcan people moved to an area of Valencia to repopulate it , where even today, after more than 400 years, the "majorcan salty speech" and his Majorcan gastronomy are preserved .
Where is Catalonia in the Balearic Islands?
To conclude, I simply refer you to this page of the newspaper EL MUNDO, where he tells us about Mr. Don Próspero de Bofarull i Mascaró, director of the Archive of the Crown of Aragon. Where you can see the Catalan manipulation of the supposed Catalan repopulation of Valencia.
About the repopulation of Menorca, the Catalan version is so absurd and ridiculous that it produces shame on others. We should ask ourselves, how is it possible that trained and educated people can believe such historical barbarities that attempt against the slightest common sense.More than a Catalanist version, we should talk about Catalanist versions. To paraphrase Groucho Marx: "This is the true story of the Balearic Islands, but if you do not like it, I have others.". One of the Catalanist versions says that Menorca, like Majorca, was depopulated of people and repopulated by peasants of the Empurdà, who brought the salty talk to Menorca.
According to the Menorcan historian María Luisa Serra , in Menorca an important native population remained and the settlers who came along over the years were simply reabsorbed by Menorcan society. The same thing that happened in Majorca.
The Catalan conquest of Ibiza was another massacre, where probably the majority of men were killed and those who remained were enslaved. As we are told in this article in Diario de Ibiza, the depopulation was such that repopulation campaigns had to be carried out with people from Tarragona.
However, remember that in Ibiza salty speech is used, as in the other Balearic Islands, something that obviously is not shared with Tarragona. And Ibizan architecture has absolutely nothing to do with Tarragona or the rest of the islands. Probably people came from Tarragona, mostly men, who mixed with the Ibizan women. Women who kept their Ibizan romance language and culture, and passed it on to their children.