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La Seu Vella cathedral in Lleida.


Coat of arms
Coordinates: 41°37′N 000°38′E / 41.617°N 0.633°E / 41.617; 0.633
Country Spain
Region Catalonia
Founded 6th century BC
 - Mayor Angel Ros i Domingo (PSC)
 - Land 211.7 km2 (81.7 sq mi)
Elevation 155 m (509 ft)
Population (2008)
 - Total 131,731
 - Density 622.25/km2 (1,611.6/sq mi)
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
 - Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
Postal code 25001-25007
Area code(s) 34 (Spain) + 973 (Lleida)
Website (English)

Lleida (Catalan pronunciation: [ˈʎejðə], locally [ˈʎejðɛ]; Spanish: Lérida, pronounced [ˈleɾiða]) is a city in the west of Catalonia, Spain.

It had 131,731 inhabitants as of 2009, including the contiguous municipalities of Raïmat and Sucs. It is the capital city of the province of the same name, as well as the largest city in that province, and the 7th Catalan town in population according to the 2006 census.[1] It's also one of the oldest towns in Catalonia (it was a settlement of the Ilergetes, an Iberian people), and it boasts the oldest university in the medieval Crown of Aragon, and the third oldest in the whole of Spain, founded in 1297.

On a local administrative level, it is also the capital city of the Segrià comarca (county). Its economy is mostly based on commerce and services, with an important agricultural factor as well. Lleida is the biggest city in the inland part of Catalonia.



It is a traditionally Catalan-speaking town and province, with a characteristic dialect (known as Western or, more specifically, North-Western Catalan, or colloquially lleidatà). Most of the population is actively bilingual in Spanish.


In ancient times the city, named Iltrida and Ilerda, was the chief city of the Ilergetes, an Iberian tribe. Indíbil, king of the Ilergetes, and Mandoni, king of the Ausetanes, defended it against the Roman invasion.

Under the Romans, the city was incorporated into the Roman province of Hispania Tarraconensis, and was a place of considerable importance, historically as well as geographically. It stood upon an eminence, on the right (west) bank of the river Sicoris (the modern Segre), the principal tributary of the Ebro, and some distance above its confluence with the Cinga (modern Cinca); thus commanding the country between those rivers, as well as the great road from Tarraco (modern Tarragona), the provincial capital, to the northwest of Spain, which here crossed the Sicoris.[2]

Its situation[3] induced the legates of Pompey in Spain to make it the key of their defense against Caesar, in the first year of the Civil War (49 BCE). Afranius and Marcus Petreius threw themselves into the place with five legions; and their siege by Caesar himself (Battle of Ilerda), as narrated in his own words, forms one of the most interesting passages of military history. The resources exhibited by the great general, in a contest where the formation of the district and the very elements of nature seemed in league with his enemies, have been frequently extolled; but no epitome can do justice to the campaign. It ended by the capitulation of Afranius and Petreius, who were conquered as much by Caesar's generosity as by his strategy.[4] In consequence of the battle, the Latin phrase Ilerdam videas is said to have been used by people who wanted to cast bad luck on someone else.

Under the Roman empire, Ilerda was a very flourishing city, and a municipium. It minted its own coins. It had a fine stone bridge over the Sicoris, (the bridge was so sturdy that its foundations support a bridge to this today). In the time of Ausonius the city had fallen into decay; but it rose again into importance in the Middle Ages.[5]

It was part of Visigothic and Muslim Hispania until it was conquered from the Moors by the Count Ramon Berenguer IV of Barcelona in 1148.

It used to be the seat of a major university, the oldest in the Crown of Aragon, until 1717, when it was moved by Philip V to the nearby town of Cervera. The University of Lleida is nowadays active again.

Lleida served as a key defense point for Barcelona during the Spanish Civil War, and fell to the Insurgents, whose air forces bombed it extensively, in 1937 and 1938. The November 2, 1937 Legion Kondor attacks against Lleida became especially infamous since they were aimed to the school known as Liceu Escolar de Lleida. 48 children and several teachers died in it that day.

After some decades without any kind of population growth, it met a massive migration of Andalusians who helped the town undergo a relative demographic growth. Nowadays it's home to immigrants of 146 different nationalities [6].

During 2007 Lleida was the year's Capital of Catalan Culture. [7]

Districts and neighbourhoods

Lleida is divided in the following districts by the Observatori Socioeconòmic de Lleida:

  • Balàfia
  • Pardinyes
  • Butsènit
  • Camp d'Esports
  • Cap Pont
  • Centre Històric
  • Humbert Torres
  • Instituts-Templers
  • Joc de la Bola
  • La Bordeta
  • Les Basses d'Alpicat
  • Llívia
  • Magraners
  • Mariola
  • Príncep de Viana-Clot
  • Rambla Ferran-Estació
  • Secà de Sant Pere
  • Torres de Sanuí
  • Universitat
  • Ciutat Jardí


Lleida-Pirineus train station.

Lleida is served by the Spanish state railway's Madrid-Barcelona high-speed rail line, serving Barcelona, Zaragoza, Calatayud, Guadalajara, and Madrid. Lleida has a new airport to be opened in January 2010, and a minor airfield located in Alfès. Also, the town is the western terminus of the Eix Transversal Lleida-Girona, and a railway covering the same distance (Eix Transversal Ferroviari) is currently under planning.

The public transport of the Lleida's surrounding area is managed by Autoritat Territorial de la Mobilitat de l'Àrea de Lleida.


Traditional celebrations include Festa Major, Aplec del Cargol and Fira de Sant Miquel.

A Latin-American cinema festival is held yearly in the town ("Mostra de Cinema Llatinoamericà de Lleida"), and an animation film festival called Animac also takes place there every May. Festinoval is an alternative rock festival held in Gardeny. Also, the international rock festival Senglar Rock is held in Les Basses d'Alpicat, in the outskirts of Lleida, each July since 2005 - it used to be held in Montblanc before that year.

Lleida was the Capital of Catalan Culture in 2007.

People from Lleida

The following names are sorted alphabetically.

  • Antoni Abad - artist (born 1956)
  • Jaume Balagueró - filmmaker (born 1960)
  • Josep Borrell - Politician, president of the European Parliament 2004-2007. (born 1947)
  • Dani Andrada , One of the world's strongest climbers
  • Francesc Claverol - 18th century religious scholar, author of De ineffabile misae sacrificio y Libellum de Adventu Anti Christi.
  • Pep Coll - writer (born 1949)
  • Albert Costa - tennis player, olympic contestant in 2000, winner of the 2002 French Open, (born 1975)
  • Leandre Cristòfol - artist, pioneer of Surrealist sculpture in Catalonia (1908-1998)
  • José Espasa Anguera - founder of the precursor of Espasa-Calpe and Enciclopedia Espasa (1840-1911)
  • Adolf Florensa - architect, urban planner who worked for various governments during the 20th century directing the restoration of Ciutat Vella in Barcelona.
  • Javier Galitó-Cava Official Site - actor, dancer born in Barcelona but raised in Lleida for most of his childhood years. He resides in the U.S since 1989.
  • Miguel Ángel Gallardo - underground comic book artist, especially known for his controversial comic series Makoki, published in the Spanish magazine El Víbora.
  • Indíbil (Indibilis, Andobales) king of the Ilergetes (3rd century BC).
  • Lorena, singer, winner of the 5th series of Spanish Fame Academy, Operación Triunfo.
  • Enrique Granados - Romantic composer (1867-1917)
  • Mari Pau Huguet - Catalan TV personality, TV3 presenter.
  • Kílian Jornet Burgada (born 1987), ski mountaineer, long-distance runner, mountain biker and duathlete
  • Bojan Krkic - (born 1990) football player.
  • Carles Puyol - (born 1978) football player.
  • Joan Capdevila - (born 1978) football player.
  • Josep Lladonosa - historian (1907-1990)
  • Mercè Mor - dancer.
  • Jaume Morera - Artist (1854-1927)
  • Joan Oró - biochemist whose research has been of importance in understanding the origin of life, received several international honours for his work. (1923–2004)
  • Manuel del Palacio - Satirist, journalist (1831-1906)
  • Josep Pernau - journalist, satyrist (born 1930)
  • Araceli Segarra - mountaineer and model (born 1970)
  • Salvador Seguí, "El Noi del Sucre" - Anarchist, secretary general of CNT in Catalonia, assassinated (1896-1923).
  • Humbert Torres - Physician and politician, vicepresident of the Generalitat de Catalunya, member of the Spanish Parliament.
  • Màrius Torres - Symbolist poet (1910-1942)
  • Jaume Ulled - stage actor (born 1978)
  • Josep Vallverdú - writer (born 1923)
  • Salvador Vázquez de Parga - essayist, comic book historian (born 1934)
  • Ricardo Viñes - Classical pianist and composer (1875-1943)


River Segre in Lleida


Lleida has been always a city with great sport tradition. Probably the most famous sport at the present time is basketball, because the club of basketball of the city a few years ago ascended to the ACB, being the revelation team in the league, this caused a lot of boys and girls to become fond of this little well-known sport.

Sister cities

Lleida has sister relationships with many places worldwide: [8] [9]

University of Lleida

See also


  1. ^
  2. ^ Antonine Itinerary pp. 391, 452.
  3. ^ To quote Julius Caesar, "propter ipsius loci opportunitatem", Commentarii de Bello Civili i. 38.
  4. ^ Julius Caesar Commentarii de Bello Civili i. 38, et seq.; Florus iv. 12; Appian, B.C. ii. 42; Velleius Paterculus ii. 42; Suetonius Caes. 34; Lucan, Pharsal. iv. 11, 144.
  5. ^ Strabo iii. p. 161; Horat. Epist. i. 20. 13; coins, ap. Florez, Med. ii. pp. 451, 646, iii. p. 73; Théodore Edme Mionnet, vol. i. p. 44, Suppl. vol. i. p. 89; Sestini, pp. 161, 166; Eckhel, vol. i. p. 51.
  6. ^
  7. ^
  8. ^ "Viles agermanades - Lleida" (in French). Retrieved 2007-10-01.  
  9. ^ "INFO POINT EUROPA. Ajuntament de Lleida.La UE i Lleida" (in Catalan). Retrieved 2007-10-01.  

External links

Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikitravel

Lleida is a city in Catalonia, Spain.

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