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Huévar del Aljarafe (Municipality, Andalusia, Spain)

Last modified: 2015-11-20 by ivan sache
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Flag of Huévar del Aljarafe - Image after the Símbolos de Sevilla website, 2 June 2014

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Presentation of Huévar del Aljarafe

The municipality of Huévar del Aljarafe (2,742 inhabitants in 2013; 5,756 ha; municipal website) is located 30 km west of Seville, on the border with the Province of Huelva.

Huévar was already settled in the Roman times, as evidenced by several archeological remains. The Visigothic period yielded little evidence of settlement, except the La Motilla chapel. The town was significant during the Muslim rule; a local tradition says that it was nicknamed "Little Seville". The town was named for the Arab sheikh Alu Al-Huevar; its primitive name must have been Hervas. After the conquest of the town by King Ferdinand III, the Moorish palace was demolished and replaced by the church of the Ascension (completed in 1510). The neighbouring villages of Collera, Characena and Especiilla were progressively abandoned by their inhabitants, being totally depopulated in the 12th-14th century.

Ivan Sache, 2 June 2014

Symbols of Huévar del Aljarafe

The flag of Huévar del Aljarafe (photo, photo) is horizontally divided blue-white-blue with the municipal coat of arms in the center. The flag does not appear to have been officially registered.

The coat of arms of Huévar del Aljarafe, adopted on 4 April 1991 by the Municipal Council and validated on 27 March 1992 by the Royal Academy of History, is prescribed by Decree No. 95, adopted on 26 May 1992 by the Government of Andalusia and published on 9 July 1992 in the official gazette of Andalusia, No. 64, p. 5,522 (text). Minor, typographical errors were corrected in a Note published on 8 August 1992 in the official gazette of Andalusia, No. 77, p. 7,265 (text). This was confirmed by a Decree adopted on 30 November 2004 by the Directorate General of the Local Administration and published on 20 December 2004 in the official gazette of Andalusia, No. 246, pp. 28,986-29,002 (text).
The coat of arms is prescribed as follows:

Coat of arms: Argent an olive tree proper on a base vert surrounded dexter by a coal shovel and a grain rake sinister by a hoe and a márcola all sable driven into the base. The shield surmounted by a Royal Spanish crown.

Huévar has been using, at least since the last third of the 19th century, an ink seal showing an olive tree standing on a base and surrounded by tools. These elements were not used on a shield, lacking therefore colours. On a few reproductions of the time, the tree is represented proper on a field argent.
Juan José Antequera Luengo submitted on 20 February 1991 a proposal of arms based on the historical seal. The proposed companion flag, submitted on 19 September 1994 upon the request of the municipality, is rectangular, in proportions 11:18, green with three black horizontal stripes, in width 1/12 of the flag's hoist in width, with the municipal coat of arms in the center. The proposed flag was not accepted.

The olive tree is the most appropriate charge for the arms of Huévar. The local soil is most suitable for the cultivation of the tree, as demonstrated by an agrobiological study published in 1962. In the Middle Ages, the Muslim alquería was already surrounded by several olive trees, which were kept in exploitation after the Christian reconquest. However, the frequent Muslim raids and the destruction of the olive trees prevented the resettlement organized from Seville by Alfonso X the Wise. Olive oil was for the next centuries the only source of income in the town; in 1314, the villagers occupied plots belonging to the village of Carrión de los Ajos (today, Carrión de los Céspedes) to increase production. In the 15th century, the area planted with olive trees reached 400 aranzadas (in Andalusia, an aranzada equalled 3,672 sq. m). In 1503, 51 sales contracts of olive oil were recorded in the Province of Seville, 50% of them signed in four towns of the Aljarafe, Huévar included (with the main yield).
[Juan José Antequera Luengo. Heráldica oficial de la provincia de Sevilla]

Ivan Sache & Klaus-Michael Schneider, 2 June 2014