by Saskia Mier
Paradas is home to an important work of art; a canvas of La Magdalena painted by the artist, El Greco. It has about 6, 900 inhabitants.
The inscriptions found in the town, suggests the origin dates to a Roman settlement called, Calla. Only some isolated vestiges remain from the Moorish civilization, also suggesting the existence of a medina.
Paradas was founded on February 1, 1460, in the reign of, Enrique IV, a letter was granted to, Don Juan Ponce de León, Marquis of Cádiz, to populate a settlement called "Las Paradas", equipped with an inn and a drinking trough. It was populated with inhabitants from the region of Astorga and Leon brought by, Don Juan de Ponce. This migration explains the existence of linguistic styles that are still preserved today.
In 1676 the Marquesado de Paradas was established under the tutelage of the Ponce de León. In 1768 the town achieved independence from the City of Marchena and in 1830 became "Constitutional Town Hall" ceasing to be Lordship of the Marquises of Paradas.
Between July 27, 1936 and February 13, 1937 more than 200 people were shot for belonging or relating to the Republican side. The "Tragic Night" occurred on November 13, 1936 in which a group of sixteen people lost their lives at the hands of Falangists.
THINGS TO SEE
Iglesia de San Eutropio
The most important monument of Paradas, the Sevillian Baroque church dates to the seventeenth and eighteenth century. It contains the most valuable work of El Greco, "La Magdalena". Located on Calle Padrea.
Jardines de Gregorio Marañón
The gardens of Gregorio Marañón are located in the previous Huerta del Santísimo; land that the Town Hall of Paradas acquired in 1956 to incorporate it into the Public Way. Years later, important remodelling work was carried out that would completely change the town's urban structure by connecting this area with the town's commercial centre. In 1998, the Town Hall, in posthumous tribute to the singer, Miguel Vargas, inaugurated an allegorical monument to Flamenco within the gardens - the work of Seville sculptor Juan Britto. Located in Plaza Jardines de Gregorio Marañón.
Carmen de los Arrayanes
The Andalusí Palace is of Nazari style, built by its owner, José Luis Romero, a 68-year-old cloth merchant. He fell in love with the Granada monument as a young man, which he visited 170 times and brought 125,000 pieces of tile back from the town. It has a copy of the one-piece gazelle vase and more than a hundred plaster moulds, as well as a pool surrounded by arches with plasterwork and covered by a coffered ceiling. Located on Calle Larga.
Ermita San Juan de Letrán
The chapel is the oldest of all monuments in Paradas throughout its history. Its existence is documented, at least, since the beginning of the sixteenth century, so it is not unreasonable to think that it was erected by, Don Juan Ponce de León himself. The interior was destroyed during the Civil War, and no longer used for worship, until in 1924 when the chapel was auctioned off to the Town Hall. It was later demolished apart from the eighteenth-century section. Located in Plaza San Juan de Letrán
Now called Casa de la Cultura, the building was built in the early twentieth century; first owned by Fernando de la Escalera Vasco (hence the name Casa Escalera). Soon after it was acquired by, Francisco Ruiz Martínez, who in turn, transferred it to the General Captaincy of Seville during the course of the Civil War. As from the fifties it was a primary school until the beginning of the seventies and at the end of the seventies the coordinating function of these centres became dependent on the Ministry of Culture. It eventually became the House of Culture with the sole objective of promoting any aspect related to culture in general. Located on Call Larga.
Paradas offers a great variety of dishes used with local produce, such as cocido de cardillo (stew), arroz de verano con tomate (venison rice with tomato), calabaza con garbanzos (squash with chickpeas) and patatas en Amarillo (stewed potatoes). Sweet treats include roscos de San Blas and albarditas.
Cabalgata Reyes Magos
Three Kings procession celebrated on the evening of 5 January.
Celebrated in February.
Celebrated the first week of May.
Fiestas Patronales en Honor de la Virgen del Carmen y de San Eutropio
Celebrated the 15-17 July.
Romeria de la Virgen de los Remedios
Celebrated the 15 August.