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Alcala de Guadaira

Alcalá de Guadaíra is a town located approximately 10 km southeast of Seville, Spain; in recent years the expansion of Seville has meant that Alcalá has become a suburb of that city. Alcalá used to be known as Alcalá de los Panaderos (Alcalá of the bakers) because it provided most of Seville's bread. The town is located on the banks of the Guadaíra River, and watermills built during the Moorish period of Spain can still be found in the area.HistoryThe town was known as Hienipo by the early Greek settlers, and later Hienipensis by the Romans. Remains of both these cultures have been discovered by local archeological investigation. Alcalá was occupied by Muslim forces in the 7th century and their name has held to modern times.Alcalá de Guadaíra was under the domination of the Muslim rulers of al-Andalus (and later the taifa of Seville) until its capture by the Almohads, who built extensive fortifications around the town. These fortifications on a promontory overlooking the river continue to dominate the south-west side of the town. In 1244, Alcalá de Guadaíra was captured by Ferdinand III of Castile. The latter was responsible for the refurbishing of the castle and town fortifications, which were subsequently used as a royal prison with a military presence. Following Ferdinand's death it fell into disrepair and ceased to be a prison or military barracks.
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