lunes, 29 de enero de 2018


The reserve of the vast territory of Guayedra outside the domain of the Crown of Castile and Aragon, was the subject of one of the pacts for the annexation of Gran Canaria agreed between the Catholic Monarchs and the Canary Regulus Tenesor Semidán, baptized Fernando Guanarteme-baptism was necessary in those times to acquire legal personality and ability to agree-, in the royal Alcázares of Córdoba at the beginning of 1483, agreements that had to accept the Canary dynast to avoid the annihilation or slavery of its people that by an indisputable inequality of arms , military means and troops -which were irremediably depleted among the indigenous part while they were renewed and increased on the Castilian side- could not win the bloody war for the total domination of the island begun in 1478.

     Fulfilling what was agreed in Cordoba Governor Pedro de Vera gave to Fernando Guanarteme on October 19, 1483, the document that accredits Guayedra as a round term and, therefore, with its own jurisdiction and thus proves with the certification of the public notary Juan de Ariñez signed on February 27, 1543, whose original document is kept in the Marquez de Acialcázar archive and from which a copy has been obtained with a notarial testimony.

    The own Catholic Kings in cedula of September 21 of 1491 given in Cordova directed to the Governor Francisco Maldonado recognize that eight years back they will have agreed with Fernando Guanarteme the permanence in his dominion and jurisdiction of the wide territory of Guayedra where he could live with forty relatives, as allusion to family groups, not to individuals, as the historian M. Lobo Cabrera has reasoned and maintains, among others.

     His stay in Guayedra lasted between 1483 and 1492, since in this last year he moved to the island of La Palma along with the Castilians to convince the indigenous Benahorite leaders of the futility of the war with 2 powerful expeditionary forces that constantly renewed Castilla, and the same did in 1494 with Los Menceyes de Tenerife convincing most of the need to agree to avoid the extermination or slavery of the Guanches.

     After the death of Fernando Guanarteme in 1496 in La Laguna, Tenerife, poor and needy - and according to some chronicles, poisoned by the Castilians on the eve of his fourth trip to the court where he intended to move to advocate as always for the rights of indigenous faced with the abuses of the Adelantado Alonso Fernández de Lugo- his son-in-law Miguel Trejo Carvajal, married with his daughter Guayarmina, baptized Margarita, in collusion with the colonial authorities, and using contradictory arguments, he managed to document in the territory of Guayedra, the rest of the indigenous state, as a private property, for supposed donation as a dowry for his father-in-law, fraudulent privatization that led to frequent conflicts with the indigenous people. Even so, in the following centuries, justice continued to recognize Guayedra as a round term with its own independent jurisdiction.

    In the words of the British historian Felipe Fernández Armesto, "The monarchs had given permission to D. Fernando to take forty members of his tribe" relatives of his "under his protection and to govern them as a kind of enclave apart from the rest of colonial society However, the administration resented its special status and in 1491 claimed that its number had illegally risen to 150. Its fates are not known, but while they survived they constituted an intriguing anomaly, and their methods of government were a curious rest of the institutions indigenous of the colonial period "(Fernández Arnesto, F. 1977." The Canary Islands after the Conquest. "Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, edited by the Island Council of Gran Canaria P. 202).

   It was not accidental the reserve of the territory of Guayedra independent of the Castilian jurisdiction, Fernando Guanarteme thus demanded it because it was a vast territory, with abundant waters, wood for the constructions, lands for the pasture of the cattle, the seafood of its considerable line of coast - usually present in the diet of the natives - and suitable zones for the own agriculture of each climatic floor given the difference of height between the littoral and the mountains, but it is also to be supposed that the advantage that influenced its decision influenced it provided the abundance in its cliffs of Orchilla -roccella canariensis, lichen from which a natural dye called orcein is extracted, which was used to dye the tissues purple- highly appreciated by Europeans for the high value it had in the markets, and with whose revenues or exchange the Indians could obtain other products or goods that nature did not provide in Guayedra.

    The current registry configuration in its set of Guayedra is practically the same as that described in the demarcation of Governor Lope de Sosa on October 11, 1512, covering the wide territory that starts from the beach of Las Nieves, borders the Roque Antigafo, climbs by the old path of the creek towards the Lomo del Manco, up to the mountain of Tamadaba, where it runs up to El Risco and descends from there until it meets the sea near the beach of El Risco. It has approximately eight kilometers of coastline.

       In Guayedra, the last territory inhabited by free canaries in harmony with nature, the echo of its distant voices still resounds through its mountains, beaches and ravines and dwells in the spirit of our brave ancestors.


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