Galicia (English: /ɡəˈlɪθiə/; Galician: Galicia
[ɡaˈliθja], Galiza [ɡaˈliθa]; Spanish: Galicia; Portuguese:
Galiza) is an autonomous community of
Spain and historic nationality
under Spanish law. Located in the northwest of the Iberian
Peninsula, it comprises the provinces of A Coruña, Lugo,
Pontevedra, being bordered by
Portugal to the south, the Spanish
autonomous communities of
Castile and León
Castile and León and
Asturias to the east,
Atlantic Ocean to the west, and the
Cantabrian Sea to the north.
It had a population of 2,718,525 in 2016 and has a total area of
29,574 km2 (11,419 sq mi). Galicia has over
1,660 km (1,030 mi) of coastline, including its offshore
islands and islets, among them Cíes Islands, Ons, Sálvora,
Cortegada, and—the largest and most populated—A Illa de Arousa.
The area now called Galicia was first inhabited by humans during the
Middle Paleolithic period, and it takes its name from the Gallaeci,
the Celtic people living north of the
Douro River during the last
millennium BC, in a region largely coincidental with that of the Iron
Age local Castro culture. Galicia was incorporated into the Roman
Empire at the end of the
Cantabrian Wars in 19 BC, and was made a
Roman province in the 3rd century AD. In 410, the Germanic Suebi
established a kingdom with its capital in
Braga (Portugal); this
kingdom was incorporated into that of the
Visigoths in 585. In 711,
Umayyad Caliphate invaded the
Iberian Peninsula conquering
Visigoth kingdom of Hispania by 718, but soon Galicia was
incorporated into the Christian kingdom of
Asturias by 740. During the
Middle Ages, the kingdom of Galicia was occasionally ruled by its own
kings, but most of the time it was leagued to the kingdom of Leon
and later to that of Castile, while maintaining its own legal and
customary practices and culture. From the 13th century on, the kings
of Castile, as kings of Galicia, appointed an Adiantado-mór, whose
attributions passed to the
Captain General of the Kingdom
of Galiza from the last years of the 15th century. The Governor
also presided the
Real Audiencia do Reino de Galicia, a royal tribunal
and government body. From the 16th century, the representation and
voice of the kingdom was held by an assembly of deputies and
representatives of the cities of the kingdom, the Cortes or Junta of
the Kingdom of Galicia. This institution was forcibly discontinued
in 1833 when the kingdom was divided into four administrative
provinces with no legal mutual links. During the 19th and 20th
centuries, demand grew for self-government and for the recognition of
the culture of Galicia. This resulted in the
Statute of Autonomy of
1936, soon frustrated by Franco's coup d'etat and subsequent long
dictatorship. After democracy was restored the legislature passed the
Statute of Autonomy of 1981, approved in referendum and currently in
force, providing Galicia with self-government.
The interior of Galicia is characterized by a hilly landscape;
mountain ranges rise to 2,000 m (6,600 ft) in the east and
south. The coastal areas are mostly an alternate series of rías[a]
and cliffs. The climate of Galicia is usually temperate and rainy,
with markedly drier summers; it is usually classified as Oceanic. Its
topographic and climatic conditions have made animal husbandry and
farming the primary source of Galicia's wealth for most of its
history, allowing for a relative high density of population. With
the exception of shipbuilding and food processing, Galicia was based
on a farming and fishing economy until after the mid-20th century,
when it began to industrialize. In 2012, the gross domestic product at
purchasing power parity was €56,000 million, with a nominal GDP
per capita of €20,700. The population is largely concentrated in
two main areas: from Ferrol to
A Coruña in the northern coast, and in
Rías Baixas region in the southwest, including the cities of
Vigo, Pontevedra, and the interior city of Santiago de Compostela.
There are smaller populations around the interior cities of
Ourense. The political capital is Santiago de Compostela, in the
province of A Coruña. Vigo, in the province of Pontevedra, is the
most populous municipality, with 292,817 (2016), while
A Coruña is
the most populous city, with 215,227 (2014).
Two languages are official and widely used today in Galicia: the
native Galician, a
Romance language closely related to Portuguese,
with which it shares
Galician-Portuguese medieval literature, and the
Spanish language, usually known locally as Castilian. 56% of the
Galician population speak Galician as their first language, while 43%
speak more in Castilian.
2.1 Prehistory and antiquity
2.2 Early Middle Ages
2.3 High and Low Middle Ages
2.4 Early Modern
2.5 Late Modern and Contemporary
5 Government and politics
5.1 Local government
5.2 Municipal governments
5.3 National government
5.4 Administrative divisions
7.7 Health care
8.3.1 Pop and rock
8.3.3 Folk and traditionally based music
8.4 Literature, poetry and philosophy
8.5 Public holidays
10.1 Emerging sports
15 See also
19 External links
Main article: Name of Galicia
A satellite view of Galicia
The name Galicia derives from the
Latin toponym Callaecia, later
Gallaecia, related to the name of an ancient Celtic tribe that resided
north of the
Douro river, the
Callaeci in Latin, or
Καλλαϊκoί (Kallaïkoí) in Greek. These
Callaeci were the
first tribe in the area to help the
Lusitanians against the invading
Romans. The Romans applied their name to all the other tribes in the
northwest who spoke the same language and lived the same life.
The etymology of the name has been studied since the 7th century by
authors such as Isidore of Seville, who wrote that "
called so, because of their fair skin, as the Gauls", relating the
name to the Greek word for milk. In the 21st century, scholars derive
the name of the ancient
Callaeci either from Proto-Indo-European
*kal-n-eH2 'hill', through a local relational suffix -aik-, so meaning
'the hill (people)'; or either from
Proto-Celtic *kallī- 'forest', so
meaning 'the forest (people)'. In any case, Galicia, being per
se a derivation of the ethnic name Kallaikói, means 'the land of the
The name evolved during the
Middle Ages from Gallaecia, sometimes
written Galletia, to Gallicia. In the 13th century, with the written
emergence of the Galician language, Galiza became the most usual
written form of the name of the country, being replaced during the
15th and 16th centuries by the current form, Galicia. This coincides
with the spelling of the
Castilian Spanish name. The historical
denomination Galiza became popular again during the end of the 19th
and the first three-quarters of the 20th century, and is still used
with some frequency today. The Xunta de Galicia, the local devolved
government, uses Galicia. The Royal Galician Academy, the institution
responsible for regulating the Galician language, whilst recognizing
Galiza as a legitimate current denomination, has stated that the only
official name of the country is Galicia.
Main article: History of Galicia
Prehistory and antiquity
Main articles: Atlantic Bronze Age, Castro culture, List of castros in
Galicia, and Gallaecia
Bronze Age gold helmet from Leiro, Rianxo
The oldest attestation of human presence in Galicia has been found in
the Eirós Cave, in the municipality of Triacastela, which has
preserved animal remains and
Neanderthal stone objects from the Middle
Paleolithic. The earliest culture to have left significant
architectural traces is the
Megalithic culture, which expanded along
the western European coasts during the
Megalithic tumuli are distributed throughout the country,
but mostly along the coastal areas. Within each tumulus is a stone
burial chamber known locally as anta (dolmen), frequently preceded by
a corridor. Galicia was later influenced by the Bell Beaker culture.
Its rich mineral deposits of tin and gold led to the development of
Bronze Age metallurgy, and to the commerce of bronze and gold items
all along the Atlantic coast of Western Europe. A shared elite culture
evolved in this region during the Atlantic Bronze Age.
Palloza houses in eastern Galicia, an evolved form of the Iron Age
Dating from the end of the
Megalithic era, and up to the Bronze Age,
numerous stone carvings (petroglyphs) are found in open air. They
usually represent cup and ring marks, labyrinths, deer, Bronze Age
weapons, and riding and hunting scenes. Large numbers of these
stone carvings can be found in the
Rías Baixas regions, at places
such as Tourón and Campo Lameiro.
List of castros in Galicia
List of castros in Galicia (
Iron Age fortified settlements)
The Castro culture ('Culture of the Castles') developed during the
Iron Age, and flourished during the second half of the first
millennium BC. It is usually considered a local evolution of the
Atlantic Bronze Age, with later developments and influences and
overlapping into the Roman era. Geographically, it corresponds to the
people the Romans called Gallaeci, which were composed of a large
series of nations or tribes, among them the Artabri, Bracari, Limici,
Celtici, Albiones and Lemavi. They were capable fighters: Strabo
described them as the most difficult foes the Romans encountered in
conquering Lusitania, while Appian mentions their warlike spirit,
noting that the women bore their weapons side by side with their men,
frequently preferring death to captivity. According to Pomponius Mela
all the inhabitants of the coastal areas were Celtic people.
Iron Age head warrior from Rubiás, Bande. Now in Museo
Provincial de Ourense.
Gallaeci lived in castros. These were usually annular forts, with one
or more concentric earthen or stony walls, with a trench in front of
each one. They were frequently located at hills, or in seashore cliffs
and peninsulas. Some well known castros can be found on the seashore
at: Fazouro, Santa Tegra, Baroña, and O Neixón; and inland at: San
Cibrao de Lás, Borneiro, Castromao, and Viladonga. Some other
distinctive features, such as temples, baths, reservoirs, warrior
statues and decorative carvings have been found associated to this
culture, together with rich gold and metalworking traditions.
The Roman legions first entered the area under Decimus Junius Brutus
in 137–136 BC, but the country was only incorporated into the
Roman Empire by the time of
Augustus (29 BC – 19 BC). The Romans
were interested in Galicia mainly for its mineral resources, most
notably gold. Under Roman rule, most Galician hillforts began to be
– sometimes forcibly – abandoned, and
Gallaeci served frequently
in the Roman army as auxiliary troops. Romans brought new
technologies, new travel routes, new forms of organizing property, and
a new language; Latin. The
Roman Empire established its control over
Galicia through camps (castra) as Aquis Querquennis, Ciadella camp or
Lucus Augusti (Lugo), roads (viae) and monuments as the lighthouse
known as Tower of Hercules, in Corunna, but the remoteness and lesser
interest of the country since the 2nd century of our era, when the
gold mines stopped being productive, led to a lesser degree of
Romanization. In the 3rd century it was made a province, under the
name Gallaecia, which included also northern Portugal, Asturias, and a
large section of what today is known as Castile and León.
Early Middle Ages
Main article: Kingdom of the Suebi
Miro, king of Galicia, and Martin of Braga, from an 1145 manuscript of
Martin's Formula Vitae Honestae, now in the Austrian National
Library. The original work was dedicated to King Miro with the header
"To King Miro, the most glorious and calm, the pious, famous for his
In the early 5th century, the deep crisis suffered by the Roman Empire
allowed different tribes of
Central Europe (Suebi,
Vandals and Alani)
to cross the
Rhine and penetrate into the rule on 31 December 406. Its
progress towards the
Iberian Peninsula forced the Roman authorities to
establish a treaty (foedus) by which the
Suebi would settle peacefully
and govern Galicia as imperial allies. So, from 409 Galicia was taken
by the Suebi, forming the first medieval kingdom to be created in
Europe, in 411, even before the fall of the Roman Empire, being also
the first Germanic kingdom to mint coinage in Roman lands. During this
period a Briton colony and bishopric (see Mailoc) was established in
Northern Galicia (Britonia), probably as foederati and allies of the
Suebi. In 585, the Visigothic
King Leovigild invaded the Suebic
kingdom of Galicia and defeated it, bringing it under Visigoth
Later the Muslims invaded
Spain (711), but the Arabs and
managed to have any real control over Galicia, which was later
incorporated into the expanding Christian Kingdom of Asturias, usually
Gallaecia or Galicia (Yillīqiya and Galīsiya) by Muslim
Chroniclers, as well as by many European contemporaries. This
era consolidated Galicia as a Christian society which spoke a Romance
language. During the next century Galician noblemen took northern
Coimbra in 871, thus freeing what were considered
the southernmost city of ancient Galicia.
High and Low Middle Ages
Main article: Kingdom of Galicia
Partial view of the Romanesque interior of the
Cathedral of Santiago
In the 9th century, the rise of the cult of the Apostle James in
Santiago de Compostela
Santiago de Compostela gave Galicia a particular symbolic importance
among Christians, an importance it would hold throughout the
Reconquista. As the
Middle Ages went on, Santiago became a major
pilgrim destination and the
Way of Saint James
Way of Saint James (Camiño de Santiago) a
major pilgrim road, a route for the propagation of
Romanesque art and
the words and music of the troubadors. During the 10th and 11th
centuries, a period during which Galician nobility become related to
the royal family, Galicia was at times headed by its own native kings,
Vikings (locally known as Leodemanes or Lordomanes) occasionally
raided the coasts. The Towers of Catoira (Pontevedra) were built
as a system of fortifications to prevent and stop the Viking raids on
Santiago de Compostela.
Ferdinand I of Castile
Ferdinand I of Castile divided his realm among his sons, and
Kingdom of Galicia
Kingdom of Galicia was granted to Garcia II of Galicia. In 1072,
it was forcibly annexed by Garcia's brother Alfonso VI of León; from
that time Galicia was united with the
Kingdom of León
Kingdom of León under the same
monarchs. In the 13th century
Alfonso X of Castile
Alfonso X of Castile standardized the
Castilian language and made it the language of court and government.
Nevertheless, in his
Kingdom of Galicia
Kingdom of Galicia the
Galician language was the
only language spoken, and the most used in government and legal uses,
as well as in literature.
An illustration of the
Cantigas de Santa Maria
Cantigas de Santa Maria (13th century)
During the 14th and 15th centuries, the progressive distancing of the
kings from Galician affairs left the kingdom in the hands of the local
knights, counts and bishops, who frequently fought each other to
increase their fiefs, or simply to plunder the lands of others. At the
same time, the deputies of the Kingdom in the Cortes stopped being
called. The Kingdom of Galicia, slipping away from the control of the
King, responded with a century of fiscal insubordination.
Gothic painting at Vilar de Donas' church, Palas de Rei
On the other hand, the lack of an effective royal justice system in
the Kingdom led to the social conflict known as the Guerras
Irmandiñas ('Wars of the brotherhoods'), when leagues of peasants and
burghers, with the support of a number of knights, noblemen, and under
legal protection offered by the remote king, toppled many of the
castles of the Kingdom and briefly drove the noblemen into Portugal
and Castile. Soon after, in the late 15th century, in the dynastic
Isabella I of Castile
Isabella I of Castile and Joanna La Beltraneja, part
of the Galician aristocracy supported Joanna. After Isabella's
victory, she initiated an administrative and political reform which
the chronicler Jeronimo Zurita defined as "doma del Reino de Galicia":
'It was then when the taming of Galicia began, because not just the
local lords and knights, but all the people of that nation were the
ones against the others very bold and warlike'. These reforms, while
establishing a local government and tribunal (the
Real Audiencia del
Reino de Galicia) and bringing the nobleman under submission, also
brought most Galician monasteries and institutions under Castilian
control, in what has been criticized as a process of centralisation.
At the same time the kings began to call the Xunta or Cortes of the
Kingdom of Galicia, an assembly of deputies or representatives of the
cities of the Kingdom, to ask for monetary and military contributions.
This assembly soon developed into the voice and legal representation
of the Kingdom, and the depositary of its will and laws.
See also: Junta of the Kingdom of Galicia
Tomb of the knight Sueiro Gómez de Soutomaior
The modern period of the kingdom of Galicia began with the murder or
defeat of some of the most powerful Galician lords, such as Pedro
Álvarez de Sotomayor, called Pedro Madruga, and Rodrigo Henriquez
Osorio, at the hands of the Castilian armies sent to Galicia between
the years 1480 and 1486. Isabella I of Castile, considered a usurper
by many Galician nobles, eradicated all armed resistance and
definitively established the royal power of the Castilian monarchy.
Fearing a general revolt, the monarchs ordered the banishing of the
rest of the great lords like Pedro de Bolaño, Diego de Andrade or
Lope Sánchez de Moscoso, among others.
Map of the Kingdom of Galicia, 1603
The establishment of the
Santa Hermandad in 1480, and of the Real
Audiencia del Reino de Galicia in 1500—a tribunal and executive body
directed by the Governor-
Captain General as a direct representative of
the King—implied initially the submission of the Kingdom to the
Crown, after a century of unrest and fiscal insubordination. As a
result, from 1480 to 1520 the
Kingdom of Galicia
Kingdom of Galicia contributed more than
10% of the total earnings of the Crown of Castille, including the
Americas, well over its economic relevance. Like the rest of
Spain, the 16th century was marked by population growth up to 1580,
when the simultaneous wars with the Netherlands,
France and England
hampered Galicia's Atlantic commerce, which consisted mostly in the
exportation of sardines, wood, and some cattle and wine.
In the late years of the 15th century the written form of the Galician
language began a slow decline as it was increasingly replaced by
Spanish, which would culminate in the Séculos Escuros "the Dark
Centuries" of the language, roughly from the 16th century through to
the mid-18th century, when written Galician almost completely
disappeared except for private or occasional uses but the spoken
language remained the common language of the people in the villages
and even the cities.
Maria Pita, heroine of the defense of
A Coruña during the English
siege of 1589
From that moment Galicia, which participated to a minor extent in the
American expansion of the Spanish Empire, found itself at the center
of the Atlantic wars fought by
Spain against the French and the
Protestant powers of England and the Netherlands, whose privateers
attacked the coastal areas, but major assaults were not common as the
coastline was difficult and the harbors easily defended. The most
famous assaults were upon the city of
Vigo by Sir
Francis Drake in
1585 and 1589, and the siege of
A Coruña in 1589 by the English
Armada. Galicia also suffered occasional slave raids by Barbary
pirates, but not as frequently as the Mediterranean coastal areas. The
most famous Barbary attack was the bloody sack of the town of Cangas
in 1617. At the time, the king's petitions for money and troops
became more frequent, due to the human and economic exhaustion of
Castile; the Junta of the
Kingdom of Galicia
Kingdom of Galicia (the local Cortes or
representative assembly) was initially receptive to these petitions,
raising large sums, accepting the conscription of the men of the
kingdom, and even commissioning a new naval squadron which was
sustained with the incomes of the Kingdom.
Vigo Bay, 23 October 1702
After the rupture of the wars with
Portugal and Catalonia, the Junta
changed its attitude, this time due to the exhaustion of Galicia, now
involved not just in naval or oversea operations, but also in an
exhausting war with the Portuguese, war which produced thousands of
casualties and refugees and was heavily disturbing to the local
economy and commerce. So, in the second half of the 17th century the
Junta frequently denied or considerably reduced the initial petitions
of the monarch, and though the tension didn't rise to the levels
Portugal or Catalonia, there were frequent urban
mutinies and some voices even asked for the secession of the Kingdom
Late Modern and Contemporary
Battle of Corunna
Battle of Corunna on 16 January 1809
Peninsular War the successful uprising of the local people
against the new French authorities, together with the support of the
British Army, limited the occupation to a six-month period in
1808-1809. During the pre-war period the Supreme Council of the
Kingdom of Galicia
Kingdom of Galicia (Junta Suprema del Reino de Galicia),
auto-proclaimed interim sovereign in 1808, was the sole government of
the country and mobilized near 40,000 men against the invaders.
The 1833 territorial division of
Spain put a formal end to the Kingdom
of Galicia, unifying
Spain into a single centralized monarchy. Instead
of seven provinces and a regional administration, Galicia was
reorganized into the current four provinces. Although it was
recognized as a "historical region", that status was strictly
honorific. In reaction, nationalist and federalist movements arose.
Re-enactment of the Battle of Corunna
The liberal General Miguel Solís Cuetos led a separatist coup attempt
in 1846 against the authoritarian regime of Ramón María Narváez.
Solís and his forces were defeated at the Battle of Cacheiras, 23
April 1846, and the survivors, including Solís himself, were shot.
They have taken their place in Galician memory as the Martyrs of
Carral or simply the Martyrs of Liberty.
Defeated on the military front,
Galicians turned to culture. The
Rexurdimento focused on recovery of the
Galician language as a vehicle
of social and cultural expression. Among the writers associated with
this movement are Rosalía de Castro, Manuel Murguía, Manuel Leiras
Pulpeiro, and Eduardo Pondal.
In the early 20th century came another turn toward nationalist
politics with Solidaridad Gallega (1907–1912) modeled on Solidaritat
Catalana in Catalonia. Solidaridad Gallega failed, but in 1916
Irmandades da Fala (Brotherhood of the Language) developed first as a
cultural association but soon as a full-blown nationalist movement.
Vicente Risco and
Ramón Otero Pedrayo
Ramón Otero Pedrayo were outstanding cultural
figures of this movement, and the magazine Nós ('Us'), founded 1920,
its most notable cultural institution, Lois Peña Novo the outstanding
Second Spanish Republic
Second Spanish Republic was declared in 1931. During the republic,
the Partido Galeguista (PG) was the most important of a shifting
Galician nationalist parties. Following a referendum on
a Galician Statute of Autonomy, Galicia was granted the status of an
Estatuto de Galicia (pdf).
Galicia was spared the worst of the fighting in that war: it was one
of the areas where the initial coup attempt at the outset of the war
was successful, and it remained in Nationalist (Franco's army's) hands
throughout the war. While there were no pitched battles, there was
repression and death: all political parties were abolished, as were
all labor unions and
Galician nationalist organizations as the
Seminario de Estudos Galegos. Galicia's statute of autonomy was
annulled (as were those of
Catalonia and the Basque provinces once
those were conquered). According to Carlos Fernández Santander, at
least 4,200 people were killed either extrajudicially or after summary
trials, among them republicans, communists, Galician nationalists,
socialists and anarchists. Victims included the civil governors of all
four Galician provinces; Juana Capdevielle, the wife of the governor
of A Coruña; mayors such as Ánxel Casal of Santiago de Compostela,
of the Partido Galeguista; prominent socialists such as Jaime
Quintanilla in Ferrol and Emilio Martínez Garrido in Vigo; Popular
Front deputies Antonio Bilbatúa, José Miñones, Díaz Villamil,
Ignacio Seoane, and former deputy Heraclio Botana); soldiers who had
not joined the rebellion, such as Generals Rogelio Caridad Pita and
Enrique Salcedo Molinuevo and Admiral Antonio Azarola; and the
founders of the PG,
Alexandre Bóveda and Víctor Casas, as well
as other professionals akin to republicans and nationalists, as the
journalist Manuel Lustres Rivas or physician Luis Poza Pastrana. Many
others were forced to escape into exile, or were victims of other
reprisals and removed from their jobs and positions.
Francisco Franco — himself a Galician from Ferrol — ruled
as dictator from the civil war until his death in 1975. Franco's
centralizing regime suppressed any official use of the Galician
language, including the use of Galician names for newborns, although
its everyday oral use was not forbidden. Among the attempts at
resistance were small leftist guerrilla groups such as those led by
José Castro Veiga ("O Piloto") and Benigno Andrade ("Foucellas"),
both of whom were ultimately captured and executed. In the
1960s, ministers such as
Manuel Fraga Iribarne
Manuel Fraga Iribarne introduced some reforms
allowing technocrats affiliated with
Opus Dei to modernize
administration in a way that facilitated capitalist economic
development. However, for decades Galicia was largely confined to the
role of a supplier of raw materials and energy to the rest of Spain,
causing environmental havoc and leading to a wave of migration to
Venezuela and to various parts of Europe. Fenosa, the monopolistic
supplier of electricity, built hydroelectric dams, flooding many
Galician river valleys.
The Galician economy finally began to modernize with a Citroën
factory in Vigo, the modernization of the canning industry and the
fishing fleet, and eventually a modernization of small peasant farming
practices, especially in the production of cows' milk. In the province
of Ourense, businessman and politician Eulogio Gómez Franqueira gave
impetus to the raising of livestock and poultry by establishing the
Cooperativa Orensana S.A. (Coren).
During the last decade of Franco's rule, there was a renewal of
nationalist feeling in Galicia. The early 1970s were a time of unrest
among university students, workers, and farmers. In 1972, general
Vigo and Ferrol cost the lives of Amador Rey and Daniel
Niebla. Later, the bishop of Mondoñedo-Ferrol, Miguel Anxo
Araúxo Iglesias, wrote a pastoral letter that was not well received
by the Franco regime, about a demonstration in Bazán (Ferrol) where
two workers died.
As part of the transition to democracy upon the death of Franco in
1975, Galicia regained its status as an autonomous region within Spain
Statute of Autonomy of 1981, which begins, "Galicia,
historical nationality, is constituted as an Autonomous Community to
access to its self-government, in agreement with the Spanish
Constitution and with the present Statute (...)". Varying degrees of
nationalist or independentist sentiment are evident at the political
Bloque Nacionalista Galego
Bloque Nacionalista Galego or BNG, is a conglomerate of
left-wing parties and individuals that claims Galician political
status as a nation.
Galician nationalist flag
From 1990 to 2005, Manuel Fraga, former minister and ambassador in the
Franco dictature, presided over the Galician autonomous government,
the Xunta de Galicia. Fraga was associated with the Partido Popular
('People's Party', Spain's main national conservative party) since its
founding. In 2002, when the oil tanker Prestige sank and covered the
Galician coast in oil, Fraga was accused by the grassroots movement
Nunca Mais ("Never again") of having been unwilling to react. In the
2005 Galician elections, the 'People's Party' lost its absolute
majority, though remaining (barely) the largest party in the
parliament, with 43% of the total votes. As a result, power passed to
a coalition of the Partido dos Socialistas de Galicia (PSdeG)
('Galician Socialists' Party'), a federal sister-party of Spain's main
social-democratic party, the
Partido Socialista Obrero Español
Partido Socialista Obrero Español (PSOE,
Socialist Workers Party') and the nationalist Bloque
Nacionalista Galego (BNG). As the senior partner in the new coalition,
the PSdeG nominated its leader, Emilio Perez Touriño, to serve as
Galicia's new president, with Anxo Quintana, the leader of BNG, as its
In 2009, the PSdG-BNG coalition lost the elections and the government
went back to the People's Party (conservative), even though the
PSdG-BNG coalition actually obtained the most votes. Alberto Núñez
Feijóo (PPdG) is now Galicia's president.
In 2012 several parties and individuals abandoned the BNG.
Irmandiño abandoned the bloc and joined with Fronte
Obreira Galega, the FPG,
Movemento pola Base and other collectives to
form Anova-Nationalist Brotherhood. Anova obtained 9 seats in the
2012 Galician election as part of the Galician Left Alternative
coalition. BNG obtained 7 seats and PPdG won the elections again.
Main article: Geography of Galicia
As Catedrais beach
As Catedrais beach in Ribadeo
Galicia has a surface area of 29,574 square kilometres
(11,419 sq mi). Its northernmost point, at 43°47′N,
is Estaca de Bares (also the northernmost point of Spain); its
southernmost, at 41°49′N, is on the Portuguese border in the Baixa
Limia-Serra do Xurés Natural Park. The easternmost longitude is
at 6°42′W on the border between the province of
Ourense and the
Castilian-Leonese province of Zamora) its westernmost at 9°18′W,
reached in two places: the A Nave Cape in
Fisterra (also known as
Finisterre), and Cape Touriñán, both in the province of A
Vixía Herbeira near Cape Ortegal, some of the highest (600
m) in Europe
The interior of Galicia is a hilly landscape, composed of relatively
low mountain ranges, usually below 1,000 m (3,300 ft) high,
without sharp peaks, rising to 2,000 m (6,600 ft) in the
eastern mountains. There are many rivers, most (though not all)
running down relatively gentle slopes in narrow river valleys, though
at times their courses become far more rugged, as in the canyons of
the Sil river, Galicia's second most important river after the Miño.
Meadows in Pambre, Palas de Rei
Topographically, a remarkable feature of Galicia is the presence of
many firth-like inlets along the coast, estuaries that were drowned
with rising sea levels after the ice age. These are called rías and
are divided into the smaller
Rías Altas ("High Rías"), and the
Rías Baixas ("Low Rías"). The
Rías Altas include Ribadeo,
Foz, Viveiro, O Barqueiro, Ortigueira, Cedeira, Ferrol, Betanzos, A
Coruña, Corme e Laxe and Camariñas. The
Rías Baixas, found south of
Fisterra, include Corcubión, Muros e Noia, A Arousa,
Rías Altas can sometimes refer only to those east of Estaca
de Bares, with the others being called
Rías Medias ("Intermediate
Erosion by the
Atlantic Ocean has contributed to the great number of
capes. Besides the aforementioned Estaca de Bares in the far north,
Atlantic Ocean from the Cantabrian Sea, other notable
capes are Cape Ortegal, Cape Prior, Punta Santo Adrao, Cape Vilán,
Cape Touriñán (westernmost point in Galicia),
Cape Finisterre or
Fisterra, considered by the Romans, along with
Finistère in Brittany
Land's End in Cornwall, to be the end of the known world.
The Ría of Ferrol was an important military base of Spain
All along the Galician coast are various archipelagos near the mouths
of the rías. These archipelagos provide protected deepwater harbors
and also provide habitat for seagoing birds. A 2007 inventory
estimates that the Galician coast has 316 archipelagos, islets, and
freestanding rocks. Among the most important of these are the
archipelagos of Cíes, Ons, and Sálvora. Together with Cortegada
Island, these make up the Atlantic Islands of Galicia National Park.
Other significant islands are Islas Malveiras, Islas Sisargas, and,
the largest and holding the largest population, Arousa Island.
The coast of this 'green corner' of the Iberian Peninsula, some
1,500 km (930 mi) in length, attracts great numbers of
tourists, although real estate development in the 2000–2010 decade
have degraded it partially.
'Tres Bispos' peak, Cervantes, Lugo
Galicia is quite mountainous, a fact which has contributed to isolate
the rural areas, hampering communications, most notably in the inland.
The main mountain range is the
Macizo Galaico (Serra do Eixe, Serra da
Lastra, Serra do Courel), also known as Macizo Galaico-Leonés,
located in the eastern parts, bordering with Castile and León.
Noteworthy mountain ranges are O Xistral (northern Lugo), the Serra
dos Ancares (on the border with León and Asturias), O Courel (on the
border with León), O Eixe (the border between
Ourense and Zamora),
Serra de Queixa (in the center of
Ourense province), O Faro (the
Lugo and Pontevedra), Cova da Serpe (border of
A Coruña), Montemaior (A Coruña), Montes do Testeiro, Serra do
Suído, and Faro de Avión (between
Pontevedra and Ourense); and, to
the south, A Peneda, O Xurés and O Larouco, all on the border of
Ourense and Portugal.
The highest point in Galicia is
Trevinca or Pena
metres or 6,969 feet), located in the Serra do Eixe, at the border
Ourense and León and Zamora provinces. Other tall peaks
are Pena Survia (2,112 metres or 6,929 feet) in the Serra do Eixe, O
Mustallar (1,935 metres or 6,348 feet) in Os Ancares, and Cabeza de
Manzaneda (1,782 metres or 5,846 feet) in Serra de Queixa, where there
is a ski resort.
Riparian forest on the banks of the Eume
Galicia is poetically known as the "country of the thousand rivers"
("o país dos mil ríos"). The largest and most important of these
rivers is the Miño, poetically known as O Pai Miño (Father Miño),
which is 307.5 km (191.1 mi) long and discharges 419 m3
(548 cu yd) per second, with its affluent the Sil, which has
created a spectacular canyon. Most of the rivers in the inland are
tributaries of this river system, which drains some 17,027 km2
(6,574 sq mi). Other rivers run directly into the Atlantic
Ocean or the Cantabrian Sea, most of them having short courses. Only
the Navia, Ulla, Tambre, and
Limia have courses longer than
100 km (62 mi).
Galicia's many hydroelectric dams take advantage of the steep, deep,
narrow rivers and their canyons. Due to their steep course, few of
Galicia's rivers are navigable, other than the lower portion of the
Miño and the portions of various rivers that have been dammed into
reservoirs. Some rivers are navigable by small boats in their lower
reaches: this is taken great advantage of in a number of semi-aquatic
festivals and pilgrimages.
The River Sil and its canyon
Galicia has preserved some of its dense forests. It is relatively
unpolluted, and its landscapes composed of green hills, cliffs and
rias are generally different from what is commonly understood as
Spanish landscape. Nevertheless, Galicia has some important
Deforestation and forest fires are a problem in many areas, as is the
continual spread of the eucalyptus tree, a species imported from
Australia, actively promoted by the paper industry since the mid-20th
century. Galicia is one of the more forested areas of Spain, but the
majority of Galicia's plantations, usually growing eucalyptus or pine,
lack any formal management. Massive eucalyptus plantation,
Eucalyptus globulus , began in the
Francisco Franco era,
largely on behalf of the paper company Empresa Nacional de Celulosas
de España (ENCE) in Pontevedra, which wanted it for its pulp. Wood
products figure significantly in Galicia's economy. Apart from tree
plantations Galicia is also notable for the extensive surface occupied
by meadows used for animal husbandry, especially cattle, an important
activity. Hydroelectric development in most rivers has been a serious
concern for local conservationists during the last decades.
Fauna, most notably the European wolf, has suffered because of the
actions of livestock owners and farmers, and because of the loss of
habitats, whilst the native deer species have declined because of
hunting and development.
Oil spills are a major issue. The
Prestige oil spill
Prestige oil spill in 2002 spilt
more oil than the
Exxon Valdez in Alaska.
Galicia has more than 2,800 plant species. Plant endemics are
represented by 31 taxons. A few oak forests (known locally as fragas)
remain, particularly in the north-central part of the province of Lugo
and the north of the province of
A Coruña (Fragas do Eume).
Galician Blond cows
Galicia has 262 inventoried species of vertebrates, including 12
species of freshwater fish, 15 amphibians, 24 reptiles, 152 birds, and
The animals most often thought of as being "typical" of Galicia are
the livestock raised there. The
Galician horse is native to the
region, as is the
Galician Blond cow and the domestic fowl known as
the galiña de Mos. The last is an endangered species, although it is
showing signs of a comeback since 2001. Galicia's woodlands and
mountains are home to rabbits, hares, wild boars, and roe deer, all of
which are popular with hunters. Several important bird migration
routes pass through Galicia, and some of the community's relatively
few environmentally protected areas are
Special Protection Areas (such
as on the Ría de Ribadeo) for these birds. From a domestic point of
view, Galicia has been credited for author
Manuel Rivas as the "land
of one million cows".
Galician Blond and
Holstein cattle coexist on
meadows and farms.
Being located on the Atlantic coastline, Galicia has a very mild
climate for the latitude and the marine influence affects most of the
province to various degrees. In comparison to similar latitudes on the
other side of the Atlantic, winters are exceptionally mild, with
consistently heavy rainfall. Snow is rare due to temperatures rarely
dropping below freezing. The warmest coastal station of
a yearly mean temperature of 14.8 °C (58.6 °F).
Ourense located somewhat inland is only slightly warmer with
14.9 °C (58.8 °F). Due to its exposed north-westerly
location, the climate is still very cool by Spanish standards. In
coastal areas summers are temperered, averaging around 25 °C
(77 °F) in Vigo. Temperatures are further cooler in A
Coruña, with a subdued 22.8 °C (73.0 °F) normal.
Temperatures do however soar in inland areas such as Ourense, where
days above 30 °C (86 °F) are very regular.
The lands of Galicia are ascribed to two different areas in the
Köppen climate classification: a south area (roughly, the province of
Ourense and Pontevedra) with tendencies to have some summer drought,
classified as a warm-summer
Mediterranean climate (Csb), with mild
temperatures and rainfall usual throughout the year; and the western
and northern coastal regions, the provinces of
Lugo and A Coruña,
which are characterized by their
Oceanic climate (Cfb), with a more
uniform precipitation distribution along the year, and milder
summers. However, precipitation in southern coastal areas are
often classified as oceanic since the averages remain significantly
higher than a typical mediterranean climate.
As an example, Santiago de Compostela, the political capital city, has
an average of 129 rainy days and 1,362 millimetres (53.6 in)
per year (with just 17 rainy days in the three summer months) and
2,101 sunlight hours per year, with just 6 days with frosts per year.
But the colder city of Lugo, to the east, has an average of 1,759
sunlight hours per year, 117 days with precipitations (>
1 mm) totalling 901.54 millimetres (35.5 in), and 40 days
with frosts per year. The more mountainous parts of the provinces of
Lugo receive significant snowfall during the winter
months. The sunniest city is
Pontevedra with 2,223 sunny hours per
Climate data for some locations in Galicia (average 1971–2000):
July av. T
January av. T
Days with rain (year/summer)
Days with frost
18.7 °C (65.7 °F)
10.4 °C (50.7 °F)
1,008 mm (39.7 in)
131 / 19
17.7 °C (63.9 °F)
5.8 °C (42.4 °F)
1,084 mm (42.7 in)
131 / 18
22.1 °C (71.8 °F)
7.5 °C (45.5 °F)
817 mm (32.2 in)
97 / 12
20.5 °C (68.9 °F)
9.5 °C (49.1 °F)
1,691 mm (66.6 in)
133 / 18
Santiago de Compostela
18.5 °C (65.3 °F)
7.4 °C (45.3 °F)
1,886 mm (74.3 in)
141 / 19
19.4 °C (66.9 °F)
8.3 °C (46.9 °F)
1,909 mm (75.2 in)
130 / 18
Government and politics
Galicia has partial self-governance, in the form of a devolved
government, established on 16 March 1978 and reinforced by the
Galician Statute of Autonomy, ratified on 28 April 1981. There are
three branches of government: the executive branch, the Xunta de
Galicia, consisting of the President and the other independently
elected councillors; the legislative branch consisting of the
Galician Parliament; and the judicial branch consisting of the High
Court of Galicia and lower courts.
Main article: Xunta de Galicia
Pazo de Raxoi, in Santiago de Compostela, seat of the presidency of
the local devolved government
Xunta de Galicia
Xunta de Galicia is a collective entity with executive and
administrative power. It consists of the President, a vice president,
and twelve councillors. Administrative power is largely delegated to
dependent bodies. The Xunta also coordinates the activities of the
provincial councils (Galician: deputacións) located in A Coruña,
Ourense and Lugo.
The President of the Xunta directs and coordinates the actions of the
Xunta. He or she is simultaneously the representative of the
autonomous community and of the Spanish state in Galicia. He or she is
a member of the parliament and is elected by its deputies and then
formally named by the monarch of Spain.
Main article: Parliament of Galicia
The Galician Parliament consists of 75 deputies elected by
universal adult suffrage under a system of proportional
representation. The franchise includes even
Galicians who reside
abroad. Elections occur every four years.
The last elections, held 25 September 2016, resulted in the following
distribution of seats:
Partido Popular de Galicia (PPdeG): 41 deputies (47.56% of popular
En Marea: 14 deputies (19.07% of popular vote)
Partido Socialista de Galicia (PSdeG-PSOE): 14 deputies (17.87% of
Bloque Nacionalista Galego
Bloque Nacionalista Galego (BNG): 6 deputies (8.33% of popular vote)
Main article: High Court of Galicia
There are 314 municipalities (Galician: concellos) in Galicia, each of
which is run by a mayor-council government known as a concello.
There is a further subdivision of local government known as an
Entidade local menor; each has its own council (xunta veciñal) and
mayor (alcalde da aldea). There are nine of these in Galicia: Arcos da
Condesa, Bembrive, Camposancos, Chenlo, Morgadáns, Pazos de Reis,
Queimadelos, Vilasobroso and Berán.
Galicia's interests are represented at national level by 25 elected
deputies in the Congress of
Deputies and 19 senators in the Senate -
of these, 16 are elected and 3 are appointed by the Galician
Prior to the 1833 territorial division of
Spain Galicia was divided
into seven administrative provinces:
From 1833, the seven original provinces of the 15th century were
consolidated into four:
A Coruña, capital: A Coruña
Pontevedra, capital: Pontevedra
Ourense; capital: Ourense
Lugo; capital: Lugo
Provinces of Galicia (location maps)
Galicia is further divided into 53 comarcas, 315 municipalities (93 in
A Coruña, 67 in Lugo, 92 in Ourense, 62 in Pontevedra) and 3,778
Municipalities are divided into parishes, which may be
further divided into aldeas ("hamlets") or lugares ("places"). This
traditional breakdown into such small areas is unusual when compared
to the rest of Spain. Roughly half of the named population entities of
Spain are in Galicia, which occupies only 5.8 percent of the country's
area. It is estimated that Galicia has over a million named places,
over 40,000 of them being communities.
Main article: Economy of Galicia
Zara (Inditex) in Dundee, Scotland
In comparison to the other regions of Spain, the major economic
benefit of Galicia is its fishing Industry. Galicia is a land of
economic contrast. While the western coast, with its major population
centers and its fishing and manufacturing industries, is prosperous
and increasing in population, the rural hinterland—the provinces of
Ourense and Lugo—is economically dependent on traditional
agriculture, based on small landholdings called minifundios. However,
the rise of tourism, sustainable forestry and organic and traditional
agriculture are bringing other possibilities to the Galician economy
without compromising the preservation of the natural resources and the
Electric cars are made in the
Citroën factory in Vigo.
Traditionally, Galicia depended mainly on agriculture and fishing.
Reflecting that history, the European Fisheries Control Agency, which
coordinates fishing controls in
European Union waters, is based in
Vigo. Nonetheless, today the tertiary sector of the economy (the
service sector) is the largest, with 582,000 workers out of a regional
total of 1,072,000 (as of 2002).
The secondary sector (manufacturing) includes shipbuilding in
Ferrol, textiles and granite work in A Coruña.
A Coruña also
manufactures automobiles, but not nearly on the scale of the French
automobile manufacturing in Vigo. The Centro de
Vigo de PSA Peugeot
Citroën, founded in 1958, makes about 450,000 vehicles annually
(455,430 in 2006); a
Citroën C4 Picasso made in 2007 was their
Arteixo, an industrial municipality in the
A Coruña metropolitan
area, is the headquarters of Inditex, the world's largest fashion
retailer. Of their eight brands, Zara is the best-known; indeed, it is
the best-known Spanish brand of any sort on an international
basis. For 2007,
Inditex had 9,435 million euros in sales for a
net profit of 1,250 million euros. The company president, Amancio
Ortega, is the richest person in Spain and indeed Europe with
a net worth of 45 billion euros.
Galicia is home to the savings bank, and to Spain's two oldest
Banco Etcheverría (the oldest) and Banco Pastor,
owned since 2011 by Banco Popular Español.
Galicia was late to catch the tourism boom that has swept
recent decades, but the coastal regions (especially the
and Santiago de Compostela) are now significant tourist destinations
and are especially popular with visitors from other regions in Spain,
where the majority of tourists come from. In 2007, 5.7 million
tourists visited Galicia, an 8% growth over the previous year, and
part of a continual pattern of growth in this sector. 85% of
tourists who visit Galicia visit Santiago de Compostela. Tourism
constitutes 12% of Galician
GDP and employs about 12% of the regional
Aer Lingus plane in the
Santiago de Compostela
Santiago de Compostela Airport.
Galicia's principal airport is the
Santiago de Compostela
Santiago de Compostela Airport.
With 2,083,873 passengers in 2014, it connects to cities in
well as several major European cities. There are two other
commercial-aviation airports in Galicia:
A Coruña Airport - Alvedro
and Vigo-Peinador Airport.
The most important Galician fishing port is the Port of Vigo; It is
one of the world's leading fishing ports, second only to Tokyo, with
an annual catch worth 1,500 million euros. In 2007 the port
took in 732,951 metric tons (721,375 long tons; 807,940 short tons) of
fish and seafood, and about 4,000,000 metric tons (3,900,000 long
tons; 4,400,000 short tons) of other cargoes. Other important ports
are Ferrol, A Coruña, Marín and the smaller port of Vilagarcía de
Arousa, as well as important recreational ports in
city and Burela. Beyond these, Galicia has 120 other organized ports.
A cruise ship in the seaport of A Coruña.
The Galician road network includes autopistas and autovías connecting
the major cities, as well as national and secondary roads to the rest
of the municipalities. The
Autovía A-6 connects
A Coruña and
Madrid, entering Galicia at Pedrafita do Cebreiro. The
connects O Porriño,
Ourense and Benavente, and enters Galicia at A
Gudiña. Two more autovías are under construction.
enters Galicia on the Cantabrian coast, and ends in Baamonde (Lugo
Autovía A-76 enters Galicia in Valdeorras; it is an
upgrade of the existing
N-120 to Ourense.
Within Galicia are the
Autopista AP-9 from Ferrol to
Vigo and the
Autopista AP-53 (also known as AG-53, because it was initially built
by the Xunta de Galicia) from Santiago to Ourense. Additional roads
under construction include
Autovía A-54 from Santiago de Compostela
to Lugo, and
Autovía A-56 from
Lugo to Ourense. The Xunta de Galicia
has built roads connecting comarcal capitals, such as the before
Autovía AG-55 connecting
A Coruña to
Pontevedra to Sanxenxo.
The first railway line in Galicia was inaugurated 15 September 1873.
It ran from O Carril, Vilagarcía da Arousa to Cornes, Conxo, Santiago
de Compostela. A second line was inaugurated in 1875, connecting A
Coruña and Lugo. In 1883, Galicia was first connected by rail to the
rest of Spain, by way of O Barco de Valdeorras. Galicia today has
roughly 1,100 kilometres (680 mi) of rail lines. Several
1,668 mm (5 ft 5 21⁄32 in) Iberian gauge
lines operated by
Renfe Operadora connect all the important
Galician cities. A 1,000 mm (3 ft 3 3⁄8 in)
metre gauge line operated by
FEVE connects Ferrol to
Oviedo. A electrified line is the Ponferrada-Monforte de
Vigo line. Several high-speed rail lines are under
construction. Among these are the Olmedo-Zamora-Galicia high-speed
rail line that opened partly in 2011, and the AVE Atlantic Axis route,
which will connect all of the major Galician Atlantic coast cities A
Coruña, Santiago de Compostela,
Vigo to Portugal.
Another projected AVE line will connect
Main article: Galician people
Galicia's inhabitants are known as
Galicians (Galician: galegos,
Spanish: gallegos). For well over a century Galicia has grown more
slowly than the rest of Spain, due largely to a poorer economy
compared with other regions of
Spain and emigration to
and to other parts of Spain. Sometimes Galicia has lost population in
absolute terms. In 1857, Galicia had Spain's densest population and
constituted 11.5% of the national population. As of 2007[update], only
6.1% of the Spanish population resided in the autonomous community.
This is due to an exodus of
Galician people since the 19th century,
South America and later to
Central Europe and to the
development of population centers and industry in other parts of
According to the 2006 census, Galicia has a fertility rate of 1.03
children per woman, compared to 1.38 nationally, and far below the
figure of 2.1 that represents a stable populace.
Lugo and Ourense
provinces have the lowest fertility rates in Spain, 0.88 and 0.93,
In northern Galicia, the A Coruña-Ferrol metropolitan area has become
increasingly dominant in terms of population. The population of the
A Coruña in 1900 was 43,971. The population of the rest of
the province, including the City and Naval Station of nearby Ferrol
and Santiago de Compostela, was 653,556. A Coruña's growth occurred
Spanish Civil War
Spanish Civil War at the same speed as other major Galician
cities, but since the revival of democracy after the death of
A Coruña has grown at a faster rate than all the
other Galician cities.
The rapid increase of population of A Coruña,
Vigo and to a lesser
degree other major Galician cities, like Ourense,
Santiago de Compostela
Santiago de Compostela during the years that followed the Spanish
Civil War during the mid-20th century occurred as the rural population
declined: many villages and hamlets of the four provinces of Galicia
disappeared or nearly disappeared during the same period. Economic
development and mechanization of agriculture resulted in the fields
being abandoned, and most of the population moving to find jobs in the
main cities. The number of people working in the Tertiary and
Quaternary sectors of the economy has increased significantly.
Since 1999, the absolute number of births in Galicia has been
increasing. In 2006, 21,392 births were registered in Galicia, 300
more than in 2005, according to the Instituto Galego de Estatística.
Since 1981, the Galician life expectancy has increased by five years,
thanks to a higher quality of life.
Birth rate (2006): 7.9 per 1,000 (all of Spain: 11.0 per 1,000)
Death rate (2006): 10.8 per 1,000 (all of Spain: 8.4 per 1,000)
Life expectancy at birth (2005): 80.4 years (all of Spain: 80.2 years)
Male: 76.8 years (all of Spain: 77.0 years)
Female: 84.0 years (all of Spain: 83.5 years)
Roman Catholicism is, by far, the largest religion in Galicia. In
2012, the proportion of
Galicians that identify themselves as Roman
Catholic was 82.2%.
The principal cities are A Coruña, Ourense, Lugo, Pontevedra,
Santiago de Compostela
Santiago de Compostela – the political capital and archiepiscopal
Vigo and Ferrol.
The four Galician capital cities
The largest conurbations are:
A Coruña-Ferrol 640,000
List of municipalities in Galicia by population
Santiago de Compostela
Vilagarcía de Arousa
Like many rural areas of Western Europe, Galicia's history has been
defined by mass emigration. Significant internal migration took place
from Galicia in the late 19th and early 20th centuries to the
industrialized Spanish cities of Barcelona, Bilbao,
Galicians emigrated to
Latin America – Argentina,
Uruguay, Venezuela, Mexico,
Cuba in particular. Fidel
Castro was born in
Cuba to a wealthy planter father who was an
immigrant from Galicia; Castro's mother was of Galician descent.
The two cities with the greatest number of people of Galician descent
outside Galicia are Buenos Aires, Argentina, and nearby Montevideo,
Uruguay. Immigration from Galicia was so significant in these areas
that Argentines and Uruguayans now commonly refer to all Spaniards as
During the Franco years, there was a new wave of emigration out of
Galicia to other European countries, most notably to France, Germany,
Switzerland, and the United Kingdom. Many of these immigrant or
expatriate communities have their own groups or clubs, which they
formed in the first decades of settling in a new place. The Galician
diaspora is so widespread that websites such as
Fillos de Galicia have
been created in the 21st century to organize and form a network of
Galicians throughout the world.
The proportion of foreign-born people in Galicia is only 2.9 percent
compared to a national figure of 10 percent; among the autonomous
Extremadura has a lower percentage of
immigrants. Of the foreign nationals resident in Galicia, 17.93
percent are the ethnically related Portuguese, 10.93 percent are
Colombian and 8.74 percent Brazilian.
Main article: Galician language
One of the oldest legal documents written in Galician, the Foro do bo
burgo do Castro Caldelas
Galicia has two official languages: Galician (Galician: galego) and
Spanish (known in
Spain as castellano, "Castilian"), both of them
Romance languages. Galician originated regionally; the latter was
associated with Castile. Galician is recognized in the Statute of
Autonomy of Galicia as the lingua propia ("own language") of Galicia.
Galician is closely related to Portuguese. Both share a common
medieval phase known as Galician-Portuguese. The independence of
Portugal since the late
Middle Ages has favored the divergence of the
Galician and Portuguese languages as they developed.
Galician language has been standardized by the Real
Academia Galega on the basis of literary tradition. Although there are
local dialects, Galician media conform to this standard form, which is
also used in primary, secondary, and university education. There are
more than three million Galician speakers in the world. Galician
ranks in the lower orders of the 150 most widely spoken languages on
For more than four centuries of Castilian domination, Spanish was the
only official language in Galicia. Galician faded from day-to-day use
in urban areas. Since the re-establishment of democracy in Spain—in
particular since passage and implementation of the Lei de
Normalización Lingüística ("Law of Linguistic Normalization", Ley
3/1983, 15 June 1983)—the first generation of students in mass
education has attended schools conducted in Galician. (Castilian
Spanish is also taught.)
Since the late 20th century and the establishment of Galicia's
Galician language is resurgent. In the cities, it is
generally used as a second language for most. According to a 2001
census, 99.16 percent of the population of Galicia understood the
language, 91.04 percent spoke it, 68.65 percent could read it and
57.64 percent could write it. The first two numbers (understanding
and speaking) were roughly the same as responses a decade earlier. But
there were great gains among the percentage of the population who
could read and write Galician: a decade earlier, only 49.3 percent of
the population could read Galician, and 34.85 percent could write it.
During the Franco era, the teaching of Galician was prohibited. Today
older people may speak the language but have no written competence
because of those years. Among the regional languages of Spain,
Galician has the highest percentage of speakers in its population.
The earliest known document in
Galician-Portuguese dates from 1228.
The Foro do bo burgo do
Castro Caldelas was granted by Alfonso IX of
León to the town of Burgo, in Castro Caldelas, after the model of the
constitutions of the town of Allariz. A distinct Galician
Literature emerged during the Middle Ages: In the 13th century
important contributions were made to the Romance canon in
Galician-Portuguese, the most notable those by the troubadour Martín
Codax, the priest Airas Nunes, King Denis of Portugal, and King
Alfonso X of Castile, Alfonso O Sabio ("Alfonso the Wise"), the same
monarch who began the process of establishing the hegemony of
Castilian. During this period,
Galician-Portuguese was considered the
language of love poetry in the Iberian Romance linguistic culture. The
names and memories of Codax and other popular cultural figures are
well preserved in modern Galicia.
Santiago de Compostela
Santiago de Compostela Cathedral, seat of the Archbishop of Santiago
of Compostela, and third most important centre of pilgrimage in
Christianity is the most widely practised religion in Galicia. It was
Late Antiquity and was practiced alongside the old
Gallaeci religion for a few centuries. Today about 82.2% of Galicians
identify as Catholic. Most Christians adhere to Roman Catholicism,
though only 20% of the population described themselves as active
Catholic Church in Galicia has had its primatial seat in
Santiago de Compostela
Santiago de Compostela since the 12th century.
Since the Middle Ages, the Galician
Catholic Church has been organized
into five ecclesiastical dioceses (Lugo, Ourense, Santiago de
Compostela, Mondoñedo-Ferrol and Tui-Vigo). While these may have
coincided with contemporary 15th-century civil provinces, they no
longer have the same boundaries as the modern civil provincial
divisions. The church is led by one archbishop and four bishops. The
five dioceses of Galicia are divided among 163 districts and 3,792
parishes. A few are governed by administrators, the remainder by
The patron saint of Galicia is Saint James the Greater. According to
Catholic tradition, his body was discovered in 814 near Compostela.
After that date, the relics of Saint James attracted an extraordinary
number of pilgrims. Since the 9th century these relics have been kept
in the heart of the church – the modern-day cathedral – dedicated
to him. There are many other Galician and associated saints; some of
the best-known are: Saint Ansurius, Saint Rudesind, Saint Mariña of
Augas Santas, Saint Senorina, Trahamunda and Froilan.
Since the 1960s, as immigrants have entered the region, they have
brought their religions with them. In 2010 there were estimated to be
25,000 Protestants and Orthodox Christians (from eastern Europe)
numbered about 10,000. There are now adherents to Islam,
Judaism in the province. In addition, around 16.6% of
that they have no religion.
Galicia's education system is administered by the regional
government's Ministry of Education and University Administration. 76%
of Galician teenagers achieve a high school degree – ranked fifth
out of the 17 autonomous communities.
There are three public universities in Galicia: University of A
Coruña with campuses in
A Coruña and Ferrol, University of Santiago
de Compostela with campuses in
Santiago de Compostela
Santiago de Compostela and
Lugo and the
Vigo with campuses in Pontevedra,
Ourense and Vigo.
Main article: Servizo Galego de Saúde
Galicia's public healthcare system is the Servizo Galego de Saúde
(SERGAS). It is administered by the regional government's Ministry of
Main article: Galician culture
Romanesque façade in the
Ourense (1160); founded in the
6th century, its construction is attributed to King Chararic.
Hundreds of ancient standing stone monuments like dolmens, menhirs and
Tumulus were erected during the prehistoric period in
Galicia, amongst the best-known are the dolmens of Dombate, Corveira,
Axeitos of Pedra da Arca, menhirs like the "Lapa de Gargñáns". From
the Iron Age, Galicia has a rich heritage based mainly on a great
number of Hill forts, few of them excavated like Baroña, Sta. Tegra,
San Cibrao de Lás and Formigueiros among others. With the
introduction of Ancient Roman architecture there was a development of
basilicas, castra, city walls, cities, villas, Roman temples, Roman
roads, and the Roman bridge of Ponte Vella. It was the Romans who
founded some of the first cities in Galicia like
Lugo and Ourense.
Perhaps the best-known examples are the Roman Walls of
Lugo and the
Tower of Hercules
Tower of Hercules in A Coruña.
The castle of Pambre, Palas de Rei, which resisted the Irmandiños
During the Middle Ages, a huge quantity of fortified castles were
built by Galician feudal nobles to mark their powers against their
rivals. Although the most of them were demolished during the
Irmandiño Wars (1466–1469), some Galician castles that survived are
Pambre, Castro Caldelas, Sobroso, Soutomaior and
others. Ecclesiastical architecture raised early in Galicia, and the
first churches and monasteries as San Pedro de Rocas, began to be
built in 5th and 6th centuries. However, the most famous medieval
architecture in Galicia had been using
Romanesque architecture like
most of Western Europe. Some of the greatest examples of Romanesque
churches in Galicia are the
Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela, the
Ourense Cathedral, Saint John of Caaveiro, Our Lady Mary of
the Church of San Xoán of Portomarín among others.
Main article: Galician cuisine
Polbo á feira
Galician cuisine often uses fish and shellfish. The empanada is a meat
or fish pie, with a bread-like base, top and crust with the meat or
fish filling usually being in a tomato sauce including onions and
Caldo galego is a hearty soup whose main ingredients are
potatoes and a local vegetable named grelo (Broccoli rabe). The latter
is also employed in Lacón con grelos, a typical carnival dish,
consisting of pork shoulder boiled with grelos, potatoes and chorizo.
Centolla is the equivalent of king crab. It is prepared by being
boiled alive, having its main body opened like a shell, and then
having its innards mixed vigorously. Another popular dish is octopus,
boiled (traditionally in a copper pot) and served in a wooden plate,
cut into small pieces and laced with olive oil, sea salt and pimentón
(Spanish paprika). This dish is called Pulpo a la gallega or in
Galician "Polbo á Feira", which roughly translates as "Galician-style
Octopus". There are several regional varieties of cheese. The
best-known one is the so-called tetilla, named after its breast-like
shape. Other highly regarded varieties include the San Simón cheese
Vilalba and the creamy cheese produced in the Arzúa-Ulloa area.
A classical dessert is filloas, crêpe-like pancakes made with flour,
broth or milk, and eggs. When cooked at a pig slaughter festival, they
may also contain the animal's blood. A famous almond cake called Tarta
de Santiago (St. James' cake) is a Galician sweet speciality mainly
Santiago de Compostela
Santiago de Compostela and all around Galicia.
Some Galician wines
Galicia has 30 products with Denominación de orixe (D.O.), some of
them with Denominación de Orixe Protexida (D.O.P.). D.O. and
D.O.P. are part of a system of regulation of quality and geographical
origin among Spain's finest producers. Galicia produces a number of
high-quality Galician wines, including Albariño, Ribeiro, Ribeira
Monterrei and Valdeorras. The grape varieties used are local
and rarely found outside Galicia and Northern Portugal. Just as
notably from Galicia comes the spirit Augardente—the name means
burning water—often referred to as
internationally or as caña in Galicia. This spirit is made from the
distillation of the pomace of grapes.
Main article: Music of Galicia,
Cantabria and Asturias
Pop and rock
Andrés Suárez: singer-songwriter from Ferrol, known for his poetic,
insightful and often romantic lyrics.
Los Suaves: hard rock/heavy metal band active since the early 1980s,
Deluxe: pop/rock band from
A Coruña led by Xoel López
Siniestro Total: punk rock
Os Resentidos: led by Antón Reixa in the 1980s
Heredeiros da Crus: rock band singing in Galician language
Dios Ke Te Crew: powerful band of hip-hop with social compromised
Folk and traditionally based music
Luar na Lubre: a band inspired by traditional galician music. They
have collaborated with
Mike Oldfield and other musicians.
Carlos Núñez: he has also collaborated with a great number of
artists, being notable his long-term friendship with The Chieftains.
Susana Seivane: virtuoso piper. She descends from a family of pipe
makers and stated she preferred pipes instead of dolls during her
Literature, poetry and philosophy
Main article: Galician Language § History
"Santa Maria, strela do dia"
Cantigas de Santa Maria
Cantigas de Santa Maria (#100)
Problems playing this file? See media help.
As with many other Romance languages,
Galician-Portuguese emerged as a
literary language in the Middle Ages, during the 12th and 13th
centuries, when a rich lyric tradition developed, followed by a minor
prose tradition, whilst being the predominant language used for legal
and private texts till the 15th century. However, in the face of the
hegemony of Castilian Spanish, during the so-called Séculos Escuros
("Dark Centuries") from 1530 to the late 18th century, it fell from
major literary or legal written use.
Rosalía de Castro.
As a literary language it was revived again during the 18th and, most
notably, the 19th-century (
Rexurdimento Resurgence) with such writers
as Rosalía de Castro, Manuel Murguía, Manuel Leiras Pulpeiro, and
Eduardo Pondal. In the 20th century, before the
Spanish Civil War
Spanish Civil War the
Irmandades da Fala ("Brotherhood of the Language") and Grupo Nós
included such writers as Vicente Risco, Ramón Cabanillas and
Castelao. Public use of Galician was largely suppressed during the
Franco dictatorship but has been resurgent since the restoration of
democracy. Contemporary writers in Galician include Xosé Luís
Méndez Ferrín, Manuel Rivas, Chus Pato, and Suso de Toro.
Día de San Xosé (St. Joseph's Day) on 19 March (strictly religious)
Día do Traballo (May Day) on 1 May
Día das Letras Galegas
Día das Letras Galegas (Galician Literature Day) on 17 May
Día da Patria Galega
Día da Patria Galega (Galicia's National Day) also known as St. James
the Apostle Day on 25 July
Día da Nosa Señora (Day of Our Lady) on 15 August (strictly
Entroido: Peliqueiros in Laza, allegedly dressed as 16th-century
Castilian tax collectors
Entroido, or Carnival, is a traditional celebration in Galicia,
historically disliked and even forbidden by the Catholic Church.
Famous celebrations are held in Laza, Verín, and Xinzo de Limia.
Festa do Corpus Christi in Ponteareas, has been observed since 1857 on
the weekend following Corpus Christi (a movable feast) and is known
for its floral carpets. It was declared a Festival of Tourist Interest
in 1968 and a Festival of National Tourist Interest in 1980.
Feira Franca, first weekend of September, in
Pontevedra recreates an
open market that first occurred in 1467. The fair commemorates the
height of Pontevedra's prosperity in the 15th and 16th centuries,
through historical recreation, theater, animation, and demonstration
of artistic activities. Held annually since 2000.
Arde Lucus, in June, celebrates the Celtic and Roman history of the
city of Lugo, with recreations of a Celtic weddings, Roman circus,
Bonfires of Saint John, Noite de San Xoán or Noite da Queima is
widely spread in all Galician territory, celebrated as a welcome to
the summer solstice since the Celtic period, and Christianized in
Saint John's day eve. Bonfires are believed to make meigas, witches,
to flee. They are particularly relevant in the city of Corunna, where
it became Fiesta of National Tourist Interest of Spain. The whole city
participate on making great bonfires in each district, whereas the
centre of the party is located in the beaches of Riazor and Orzan, in
the very city heart, where hundreds of bonfires of different sizes are
lighted. Also, grilled sardines are very typical.
Rapa das Bestas ("shearing of the beasts") in Sabucedo, the first
weekend in July, is the most famous of a number of rapas in Galicia
and was declared a Festival of National Tourist Interest in 1963. Wild
colts are driven down from the mountains and brought to a closed area
known as a curro, where their manes are cut and the animals are
marked, and assisted after a long winter in the hills. In Sabucedo,
unlike in other rapas, the aloitadores ("fighters") each take on their
task with no assistance.
Ortigueira (Ortigueira's Festival of Celtic World) lasts
four days in July, in Ortigueira. First celebrated 1978–1987 and
revived in 1995, the festival is based in Celtic culture, folk music,
and the encounter of different peoples throughout
Spain and the world.
Attended by over 100,000 people, it is considered a Festival of
National Tourist Interest.
Festa da Dorna, 24 July, in Ribeira. Founded 1948, declared a Galician
Festival of Tourist Interest in 2005. Founded as a joke by a group of
friends, it includes the Gran Prix de Carrilanas, a regatta of
hand-made boats; the
Icarus Prize for Unmotorized Flight; and a
musical competition, the Canción de Tasca.
Festas do Apóstolo Santiago (Festas of the Apostle James): the events
in honor of the patron saint of Galicia last for half a month. The
religious celebrations take place 24 July. Celebrants set off
fireworks, including a pyrotechnic castle in the form of the façade
of the cathedral.
Romería Vikinga de
Catoira ("Viking Pilgrimage of Catoira"), first
Sunday in August, is a secular festival that has occurred since 1960
and was declared a Festival of International Tourist Interest in 2002.
It commemorates the historic defense of Galicia and the treasures of
Santiago de Compostela
Santiago de Compostela from Norman and
Saracen pirate attacks.
Festas da Peregrina, 2nd week of August, celebrating the Pilgrim
Virgin of Pontevedra.
A reenactor dressed as a Roman soldier. Festa do esquecemento, Xinzo
Festa de San Froilán, 4–12 October, celebrating the patron saint of
the city of Lugo. A Festival of National Tourist Interest, the
festival was attended by 1,035,000 people in 2008. It is most
famous for the booths serving polbo á feira, an octopus dish.
Festa do marisco (Seafood festival), October, in O Grove. Established
1963; declared a Festival of National Tourist Interest in the 1980s.
Festa da Peregrina in Pontevedra. There is a bullfighting festival at
the same time.
Pontevedra is the only city where there is a permanent
In 2015 only five corridas took place within Galicia. In addition,
recent studies have stated that 92% of
Galicians are firmly against
bullfighting, the highest rate in Spain. Despite this, popular
associations, such as Galicia Mellor Sen Touradas ("Galicia Better
without Bullfights"), have blamed politicians for having no compromise
in order to abolish it and have been very critical of local councils',
especially those governed by the PP and PSOE, payment of subsidies for
corridas. The province government of
Pontevedra stopped the end of
these subsidies and declared the province "free of bullfights".
The province government of
A Coruña approved a document supporting
the abolition of these events.
Televisión de Galicia
Televisión de Galicia (TVG) is the autonomous community's public
channel, which has broadcast since 24 July 1985 and is part of the
Compañía de Radio-
Televisión de Galicia
Televisión de Galicia (CRTVG). TVG broadcasts
throughout Galicia and has two international channels, Galicia
Televisión Europa and Galicia Televisión América, available
European Union and the
Americas through Hispasat. CRTVG
also broadcasts a digital terrestrial television (DTT) channel known
as tvG2 and is considering adding further DTT channels, with a 24-hour
news channel projected for 2010.
Radio Galega (RG) is the autonomous community's public radio station
and is part of CRTVG. Radio Galega began broadcasting 24 February
1985, with regular programming starting 29 March 1985. There are two
regular broadcast channels: Radio Galega and Radio Galega Música. In
addition, there is a DTT and internet channel, Son Galicia Radio,
dedicated specifically to Galician music.
Galicia has several free and community radiostations.
Cuac FM is the
headquarters of the Community Media Network (which brings together
media non-profit oriented and serve their community). CUAC FM (A
Coruña), Radio Filispim (Ferrol), Radio Roncudo (corme), Kalimera
Radio (Santiago de Compostela), Radio Piratona (Vigo) and Radio Clavi
(Lugo) are part of the Galician Network of Free and Association of
Community Radio Broadcasters(ReGaRLiC)
The most widely distributed newspaper in Galicia is La Voz de Galicia,
with 12 local editions and a national edition. Other major newspapers
El Correo Gallego (Santiago de Compostela), Faro de
Pontevedra (Pontevedra), El Progreso (Lugo), La Región
Galicia Hoxe – The first daily newspaper to publish
exclusively in Galician. Other newspapers are Diario de Ferrol', the
sports paper DxT Campeón,
El Ideal Gallego
El Ideal Gallego from A Coruña, the
Heraldo de Vivero,
Atlántico Diario from
Vigo and the Xornal de
Deportivo played in UEFA Cup in the 2008–2009 season
Galicia has a long sporting tradition dating back to the early 20th
century, when the majority of sports clubs in
Spain were founded. The
most popular and well-supported teams in the region, Celta
Deportivo La Coruña, both compete in Spain's top division, La Liga.
When the two sides play, it is referred to as the Galician derby.
Deportivo were champions of
La Liga in 1999-2000 season.
SD Compostela from
Santiago de Compostela
Santiago de Compostela and Racing Ferrol from
Ferrol are two other notable clubs and they currently play in third
level, but nowadays the third most important football team of Galicia
is CD Lugo, currently playing in the second division of
La Liga (Liga
Adelante). Similarly to
Catalonia and the Basque Country, the Galician
Football Federation also periodically fields a national team against
international opposition. This fact causes some political controversy
because matches involving other national football teams different from
the Spanish official national team threaten its status as the one and
only national football team of the State. The policy of centralization
in sport is very strong as it is systematically used as a patriotic
device with which to build a symbol of the supposed unity of Spain
which is actually a plurinational State.
Football aside, the most popular team sports in Galicia are futsal,
handball and basketball. In basketball,
Obradoiro CAB is the most
successful team of note, and currently the only Galician team that
plays in the Liga ACB; other teams are CB Breogan, Club Ourense
Baloncesto and OAR Ferrol. In the sport of handball, Club Balonmán
Cangas plays in the top-flight (Liga ASOBAL). The sport is
particularly popular in the province of
Pontevedra with the three
other Galician teams in the top two divisions: SD Teucro (Pontevedra),
Octavio Pilotes Posada (Vigo) and SD Chapela (Redondela).
In roller hockey HC Liceo is the most successful Galician team, in any
sport, with numerous European and World titles. In futsal teams,
Lobelle Santiago and Azkar Lugo.
Galicia is also known for its tradition of water sports, both at sea
and in rivers, sush as rowing, yachting, canoeing and surfing, in
which sports is a regular winner of metals in the Olympics, currently
the most notable examples are David Cal, Carlos Pérez Rial and
Fernando Echavarri. In the field water sport Galician par excellence
are the trainer, counting Galicia with representatives in the League
of San Miguel trawlers.
In recent years comes from Galicia also become a power in any
triathlon in the hands of
Francisco Javier Gómez Noya
Francisco Javier Gómez Noya and Iván
Raña, both world champions, and Noia being one of the best athletes
in the history of the specialty. In 2006 the cyclist Oscar Pereiro,
another Galician athlete, won the Tour de
France after the
disqualification of American Floyd Landis, snatching him the top spot
on the penultimate day.
Galicians are also prominent athletes in
sports such as mountaineering, where Chus Lago stands out, the third
woman to reach the summit of Everest without oxygen aid, whom also has
the title of Snow Leopard.
Since 2011, several
Gaelic football teams have been set up in Galicia.
The first was Fillos de Breogán (A Coruña), followed Artabros
(Oleiros), Irmandinhos (A Estrada), SDG Corvos (Pontevedra), and
Suebia (Santiago de Compostela) with talk of creating a Galician
league. Galicia also fielded a
Gaelic football side (recognised as
national by the GAA) that beat
Britanny in July 2012 and was reported
in the Spanish nationwide press.
Rugby is growing in popularity, although the success of local teams is
hampered by the absence of experienced expat players from
English-speaking countries typically seen at teams based on the
Mediterranean coast or in the big cities. Galicia has a long
established Rugby Federation that organises its own women's,
children's and men's leagues. Galicia has also fielded a national side
for friendly matches against other regions of
Spain and against
Portugal. A team of expat
Galicians in Salvador,
Brazil have also
formed Galicia Rugby, a sister team of the local football club.
Coat of arms of Galicia (Spain)
Coat of arms of Galicia (Spain) and Flag of Galicia
Coat of arms
Coat of arms of the
Kingdom of Galicia
Kingdom of Galicia (L'armorial Le Blancq, c. 1560
A golden chalice enclosed in a field of azure has been the symbol of
Galicia since the 13th century. Originated as a
Canting arms due to
the phonetic similarity between the words "chalice" and Galyce
("Galicia" in old Norman language), the first documented mention of
this emblem is on the Segar's Roll, an English medieval roll of arms
where are represented all the Christian kingdoms of 13th-century
Europe. In following centuries, the Galician emblem was variating;
diverse shapes and number of chalices (initially three and later one
or five), wouldn't be until the 16th century that its number was fixed
finally as one single chalice. Centuries after, a field of crosses was
slowly added to the azure background, and latterly also a silver host.
Since then basically the emblem of the kingdom would be kept until
The ancient flag of the
Kingdom of Galicia
Kingdom of Galicia was based mainly on its
coat of arms until the 19th century. However, when in 1833 the
Spain decided to abolish the kingdom and divided it in
four provinces, the Galician emblem as well as flag, lost its legal
status and international validity. It wouldn't be until the late 19th
century that some Galician intellectuals (nationalist politicians and
writers) began to use a new flag as symbol a renewed national unity
for Galicia. That flag, what was composed by a diagonal stripe over a
white background, was designated "official flag of Galicia" in 1984,
after the fall of the Franco's dictatorship. In addition, the Royal
Academy of Galicia asked the Galician government to incorporate the
ancient coat of arms of the kingdom onto the modern flag, being
present in it since then.
In addition to its coat of arms and flag, Galicia also has an own
anthem. While it is true that the
Kingdom of Galicia
Kingdom of Galicia had during
centuries a kind of unofficial anthem known as the "Solemn March of
the kingdom", the Galician current anthem was not created until 1907,
although its composition had begun already in 1880. Titled "Os Pinos"
("The Pines"), the Galician anthem lyrics was written by Eduardo
Pondal, one of the greatest modern Galician poets, and its music was
composed by Pascual Veiga. Performed for the first time in 1907 in
Havana (Cuba) by Galician emigrants, the anthem was banned since 1927
by diverse Spanish Governments until 1977, when it was officially
established by the Galician authorities.
Anta (dolmen) at Axeitos, Ribeira. Hundreds of megaliths are still
preserved in Galicia
Fisterra or Cape Finisterre, meaning 'Land's End', one of the
westernmost points in continental Europe
Tower of Hercules, a Roman lighthouse and a
World Heritage monument, A
Gates of the
Iron Age oppidum of San Cibrao de Las, one of the largest
castros of Galicia
Gaiteiros, or bagpipe players. Gaita ('bagpipe') is the most
representative Galician musical instrument
Queimada, a traditional drink obtained after partially burning local
A hórreo or cabaceiro, a traditional and ubiquitous granary
A cruceiro, or wayside cross, and San Xurxo church in A Coruña
Millenarian rock carvings, Laxe dos carballos at Campo Lameiro, in
this detail depicts a deer hit by several spears
Town square, Ribadavia
Castle and Monastery of San Vicente do Pino, Monforte de Lemos
Roman Walls of Lugo, a
World Heritage monument
A traditional dorna, a fisherman boat common in the
Ria de Arousa
Main article: List of Galicians
Galicia Peak in Vinson Massif,
Antarctica is named after the
autonomous community of Galicia.
Celtic Studies portal
Outline of Galicia
Timeline of Galician history
List of castros in Galicia
Bell, Aubrey F. B. (1922). Spanish Galicia. London: John Lane The
Bodley Head Ltd.
Meakin, Annette M. B. (1909). Galicia. The
Switzerland of Spain.
London: Methuen & Co.
^ Definition of ría: submerged valley where the sea penetrates tens
of kilometres inland.
^ Collins Dictionary spoken UK English tends to distinguish Galicia
/ɡəˈlɪθiə/ from its Eastern European homograph Galicia
^ These words both demonstrate the two main regional speech phenomena
of the language, gheada and seseo, and are realized as [ɡaˈliθja],
[ɡaˈliθa] in the east, [ħaˈliθja], [ħaˈliθa] more centrally,
and [ħaˈlisja], [ħaˈlisa] further west; [gaˈliθa], [ɡaˈliθja]
are de facto standard, though all of these pronunciations are
^ "Galicia, a historic nationality, constitutes itself as an
autonomous community for accessing to its self-government", "Galicia,
nacionalidade histórica, constitúese en Comunidade Autónoma para
acceder ó seu autogoberno"
Statute of Autonomy of Galicia (1981), 1.
^ "Instituto Galego de Estatística". Instituto Galego de
Estatística. Retrieved 10 January 2017.
^ "Límites e posición xeográfica". Instituto Galego de
Estatística. Retrieved 19 July 2012.
^ Encyclopaedia Britannica; Or A Dictionary of Arts, Sciences, and
Miscellaneous Literature. Archibald Constable. 1823.
^ Rodríguez Fernández, Justiniano (1997). García I, Ordoño II,
Fruela II, Alfonso IV. Burgos: Editorial La Olmeda.
^ a b de Artaza, Manuel Ma. (1998). Rey, reino y
representación : la Junta General del Reino de Galicia
(1599–1834). Madrid: Consejo Superior de Investigaciones
Científicas. ISBN 84-453-2249-4.
^ Galicia had a population of 1,345,803 inhabitants in 1787, some 44
inhabitants per square kilometer, out of a total of 9,307,804 in
metropolitan Spain. Cf. Censo español executado de orden del Rey
comunicada por el ... Conde de Floridablanca en el año de 1787.
Imprenta Real. 1787. Retrieved 10 January 2017.
^ a b "Instituto Nacional de Estadística". Ine.es. Retrieved
^ INE 2013
^ Instituto Galego de Estatística (source is in Galician)
^ a b Moralejo, Juan J. (2008). Callaica nomina : estudios de
onomástica gallega (PDF). A Coruña: Fundación Pedro Barrié de la
Maza. pp. 113–148. ISBN 978-84-95892-68-3.
^ Luján, Eugenio R. (2000): "Ptolemy's 'Callaecia' and the
language(s) of the 'Callaeci', in Ptolemy: towards a linguistic atlas
of the earliest Celtic place-names of Europe : papers from a
workshop sponsored by the British Academy, Dept. of Welsh, University
of Wales, Aberystwyth, 11–12 April 1999, pp. 55-72. Parsons and
Patrick Sims-Williams editors.
^ Paredes, Xoán (2000): "Curiosities across the Atlantic: a brief
summary of some of the Irish-Galician classical folkloric similarities
nowadays. Galician singularities for the Irish", in Chimera, Dept. of
Geography, University College Cork, Ireland
^ Curchin, Leonard A. (2008) Estudios GallegosThe toponyms of the
Roman Galicia: New Study. CUADERNOS DE ESTUDIOS GALLEGOS LV (121):
^ Fraga, Xesús (8 June 2008). "La Academia contesta a la Xunta que el
único topónimo oficial es Galicia" [The Academy responds to the
Xunta saying that the only official toponym is Galicia]. La Voz de
Galicia. Archived from the original on 4 March 2016.
^ Antonio de la Peña Santos, Los orígenes del asentamiento humano
Archived 24 May 2013 at the Wayback Machine., (chapters 1 and 2 of the
book Historia de
Pontevedra A Coruña:Editorial Vía Láctea, 1996. p.
^ de la Peña García, Antonio (2001). Petroglifos de Galicia.
Perillo-Oleiros (A Coruña): Vía Láctea.
^ Parcero-Oubiña C. and Cobas-Fernández, I (2004). Iron Age
Archaeology of the Northwest Iberian Peninsula. In e-Keltoi, Volume 6:
1-72. UW System Board of Regents, 2004. ISSN 1540-4889.
^ History of Rome: the Spanish Wars, 72-73.
^ Livy lv., lvi., Epitome
^ "''Formula Vitae Honestae''". Thelatinlibrary.com. Retrieved
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las fuentes árabes medievales. Madrid: Consejo Superior de
Investigaciones Cientifícas. ISBN 978-84-00-08576-6.
^ Alfonso II of
Asturias was addressed as: "DCCXCVIII. Venit etiam et
legatus Hadefonsi regis Galleciae et Asturiae, nomine Froia,
papilionem mirae pulchritudinis praesentans. (...) Hadefonsus rex
Galleciae et Asturiae praedata Olisipona ultima Hispaniae civitate
insignia victoriae suae loricas, mulos captivosque Mauros domno regi
per legatos suos Froiam et Basiliscum hiemis tempore misit.”
(ANNALES REGNI FRANCORUM); “Hadefuns rex Gallaeciae Carolo prius
munera pretiosa itemque manubias suas pro munere misit.” (CODEX
AUGIENSIS); "Galleciarum princeps" (VITA LUDOVICI) Cf. López
Carreira, Anselmo (2005): O Reino medieval de Galicia. A Nosa Terra,
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^ Eduardo Loureiro. "Viking Festival webpage". Catoira.net. Retrieved
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^ Rubio Martínez, Amparo (2010). "LOS INGRESOS EXTRAORDINARIOS DEL
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^ Martínez Crespo, José (2007). A guerra na Galicia do antigo
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de Investigaciones Científicas. pp. 231–325.
^ de Artaza, Manuel M. (1998). Rey, reino y representación : la
Junta General del Reino de Galicia (1599–1834). Madrid: Consejo
Superior de Investigaciones Científicas. pp. 325–345.
^ "Proposición no de ley del PSdeG-PSOE en el Parlamento de Galicia
sobre Memoria Histórica" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 3
April 2010. Retrieved 26 April 2010.
^ Ernesto S. Pombo, El último guerrillero antifranquista, El País,
1986-03-10. Retrieved 2010-02-18.
^ Carlos Fernández, La cárcel acogió a huéspedes históricos, La
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^ María José Portero, Las huelgas más importantes[permanent dead
link], El País, 1984-03-04. Retrieved 2008-11-02.
^ Muere en
Ourense a los 87 años el obispo emérito de Mondoñedo
Miguel Anxo Araújo Archived 29 October 2013 at the Wayback Machine.,
La Región 2007-07-23. Retrieved 2008-11-03.
^ Confidencial, Galicia. "Asemblea urxente do Encontro
decidir o seu futuro no BNG".
^ 20Minutos. "(AMP) Beiras abandona con el Encontro
Irmandiño el BNG,
el frente nacionalista que contribuyó a fundar en 1982 -
^ Confidencial, Galicia. "Nace Anova Irmandade Nacionalista".
^ a b c d e Galicia 08, Xunta de Galicia, Consellaría de Cultura e
^ La Xunta elabora un inventario de islas para su posible compra.
FaroDeVigo.es. Retrieved 2009-01-22.
^ Santa Maria, Inés Santa Maria (2009). Atlas Xeográfico e
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^ Paula Pérez, El desorden de los bosques, FaroDeVigo.es. Retrieved
^ Enciclopedia Galega Universal (online version)
^ La 'galiña de Mos' aumenta su censo de 100 a 5.500 ejemplares en
siete años, aunque sigue en peligro de extinción,
^ "Climate normals for Pontevedra". Aemet.es. Retrieved 29 December
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^ "Standard climate values for Vigo". Aemet.es. Retrieved 29 December
^ "Standard climate values for A Coruña". Aemet.es. Retrieved 29
^ Santa Maria, Inés; Noé Massó (2009). Atlas Xeográfico e
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^ Cf. Meteogalicia Archived 3 September 2015 at the Wayback Machine.
^ From AEME. For 1970–2000: AEMet.
^ "Estatuto de Autonomía de Galicia. Título I: Del Poder Gallego".
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^ "Eleccións 2016". Retrieved 10 January 2017.
^ The seven silver crosses on the coat of arms of Galicia refer to
these seven historic provinces.
^ Manuel Bragado, «Microtoponimia» Archived 1 January 2016 at the
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Vigo de PSA produjo 455.430 vehículos en 2006, el 7% más
2006-12-21. Retrieved 2010-02-18.
^ Nueve millones de coches `made in´ Vigo, FaroDeVigo.es, 2007-09-12.
^ "Zara, la marca española más conocida en el exterior".
Inditex gana un 25% más y aumentará un 15% la superficie
disponible hasta 2010, www.cincodias.com, 2008-03-31.
Amancio Ortega se refuerza en Acerinox y BBVA; entra en Iberdrola e
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^ "Map: European Billionaires". Forbes. 2013-02-04. Retrieved
^ a b c "Galicia recibió un 8% más de turistas durante el 2007". 2
^ El Barrio Marinero, www.galiciaparaelmundo.com.
^ Antonio Figueras, ¡Y aún dicen que el pescado es caro!,
^ a b As lucenses son as que menos fillos teñen en España,
^ Aumentan los nacimientos en Galicia, pero el saldo vegetativo sigue
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^ Carlos Punzón, La esperanza de vida se incrementó en Galicia en
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^ "Instituto Nacional de Estadística. (National Statistics
^ a b c "Interactivo: Creencias y prácticas religiosas en
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^ "Instituto Nacional de Estadística. (National Statistics
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Consello da Cultura Galega. Retrieved 2010-02-19. Archived 2 November
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^ Denominaciones de Origen y Indicaciones Geográficas Archived 22
April 2010 at the Wayback Machine., Ministerio de Medio Ambiente y
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^ "O San Froilán atraeu a
Lugo a máis dun millón de persoas".
Elprogreso.galiciae.com. Archived from the original on 17 October
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^ "A teima en
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Galicia - Praza Pública".
^ "A Deputación declara
Pontevedra libre de touradas e dá outro paso
para a abolición en Galicia - Praza Pública".
^ "A Deputación da Coruña pide por ampla maioría a abolición das
touradas - Praza Pública".
^ Faro de Vigo, 24 October 2012)
^ "Galicia juega al fútbol irlandés Galicia EL PAÍS".
Ccaa.elpais.com. Retrieved 2014-05-14.
^ "SCAR Composite Gazetteer".
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