Valencia Day in Spain Date in the current year: October 9, 2024

Valencia Day in Spain Valencia Day (Día de la Comunidad Valenciana) is the official holiday of the Valencian Community of Spain. It is celebrated on October 9 to commemorate the 1238 reconquest of Valencia from the Moors by King James I of Aragon.

The autonomous community of Valencia, officially named the Valencian Community, is located in the east of Spain. It is bordered by Aragon, Castilla—La Mancha, Catalonia and Murcia, and consists of three provinces: Alicante, Castellón and Valencia.

The borders of the Valencian Community are roughly the same as the borders of the Kingdom of Valencia, which was founded by King James of Aragon during the Reconquista. However, the history of the city of Valencia, which gave its name to the autonomous community and one of its provinces, began much earlier.

The city of Valentia was founded by the Romans in 138 BC. Before their arrival, the coastal region used to be populated by the Iberians, the Greeks, and the Carthaginians. The city was invaded by the Visigoths in 413 and by the Arabs in 711.

The territory of what is now Valencia was included into the Emirate of Cordoba, later transformed into the Caliphate of Cordoba. After the fall of the caliphate, it was divided into two independent taifas, the Taifa of Valencia and the Taifa of Denia, along with a number of smaller taifas, which were short-lived.

In 1229, King Jaime I of Aragon launched a campaign to reconquer territories in the Iberian peninsular and the Mediterranean from the Arabs. He started with the Balearic Islands, conquering Majorca in 1229, Menorca in 1232, and Ibiza in 1235. After that, his army proceeded to conquer Valencia. Following a siege that lasted for several months, the city fell to Christian troops on October 9, 1238.

Jaime I founded the Kingdom of Valencia as an independent country within the Crown of Aragon. Following the dynastic union of Aragon with Castile, the Kingdom of Valencia became part of Spain. In 1707, king Philip V of Spain ended the Kingdom of Valencia as a legal and political entity because the local population had supported his opponent during the War of the Spanish Succession.

For the next two and a half centuries, Valencia was a province of Spain. It received partial autonomy in 1977 as a result of the collapse of Franco’s regime. Valencia’s Statute of Autonomy came into force in 1982. Although many autonomous communities celebrate the anniversary of the Statute of Autonomy as their official holiday, Valencia chose to celebrate the anniversary its reconquest by King Jaime I as Valencia Day instead.

The celebration of Valencia Day begins late at night on October 8 with a spectacular fireworks display. Events on October 9 include a colorful procession in the provincial capital, which incorporates a flower-laying ceremony at the statue of King James I, a Moors and Christians festival, street parties, and other festivities throughout the community.

In addition to being Valencia Day, October 9 is also the feast day of Saint Denis of Paris. In Valencia, he is venerated as the patron saint of lovers, so it is customary to give marzipan pastries wrapped in a silk scarf to one’s loved one on this day.

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Valencia Day in Spain, holidays in Spain, holidays in Valencia, autonomous community days in Spain, Valencian Community