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A street in Écija

Écija is a city belonging to the province of Seville, Spain. It is located in the Andalusian countryside, 95 km from the city of Seville. According to the 2008 census, Écija has a total population of 40,100 inhabitants, ranking as the fifth most populous city in the province. The river Genil, the main tributary of the river Guadalquivir, runs through the urban area of the city.

The economy of Écija is based on agriculture (olives, cereals and vegetables), cattle (cows and horses) and textile industry. The city has over twenty churches and convents, some of them with either Gothic, Mudejar, Renaissance or Baroque towers, as well as an Arab fortress.


Roman Astigi

Ancient Iberian finds date back to the 8th century BC, and there are several archaeological remains of later Greek and Roman settlements. In Roman times the town was at first known as Astigi. During the Roman civil war Écija stood "firmly"[1] at the side of Julius Caesar in the Battle of Munda. As a reward Caesar fortified the town and refounded it as the Julian colony Colonia Iulia Firma Astigitana. Under the reign of Augustus the colony's name was extended to Colonia Iulia Augusta Firma Astigitana.[2]

Astigi was an important town of Hispania Baetica, and the seat of Astigitanus, one of the four conventi where the chief men met together at major centers, at fixed times of year, under the eye of the proconsul, to oversee the administration of justice, was also an early seat of a diocese; St. Fulgentius, bishop of Astigi (died before 633), was named to the see by his brother Isidore of Seville. Though it was suppressed in 1144, Astigi remains a titular see in the Roman Catholic Church.[3]

Although Astigi was one of the largest and most complete Roman cities ever to be unearthed, in 1998, mayor Julian Álvarez Pernía decided to bulldoze Écija's Roman ruins and replace them with a 299-car parking lot.


Écija is known in Spain as La sartén de Andalucía ("The Frying Pan of Andalusia"), because it records the highest summer temperatures in the nation. It once reached an outstanding 52 degrees celsius. In the summer temperatures can reach 45–47°C during the day and 26–35°C at night.


  1. ^ firmam; CIL 02-05, *00057.
  2. ^ In the Alcázar of Écija an inscription was found that commemorates Écija's role during the Battle of Munda: "Imperator Gaius Iulius Caesar, having defeated the son of Pompey at the Battle of Munda, strengthened the colony under its name Iulia Augusta Firma Astigitana, for it was well deserved, and repaired its walls." (A copy of the inscription was also excavated in Osuna; CIL 02-05, *00057 = CILA 02-04, *00029.) The word AVG[ustam] in the colony's name, which referred to the emperor Augustus, was added to the inscription later (cf. Vicente Duran Recio, La Batalla de Munda, Córdoba 1984, p. 15 sqq.). Latin text:
  3. ^ Astigi (titular see).

External links

Coordinates: 37°32′N 5°05′W / 37.533°N 5.083°W / 37.533; -5.083

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