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The former University of Oñate

Oñati is a town located in the province of Guipúzcoa, in the autonomous community of the Basque Country, in the north of Spain. It has a population of approximately 10,500 and lies in a valley in the center of the Basque country. It lies about 40 km south of the Bay of Biscay and is about 236 m above sea level. The name in Basque translates roughly as "place of many hills," reflecting the beautiful landscape of the area. The town is surrounded on three sides by green mountains on the southern side by the Aloña limestone formation.

Dating back to the Medieval period, Oñati is a town of many monuments. The Ancient University of the Basque Country, which is in the town's centre, is one of the oldest university buildings on the Iberian peninsula. Today it houses the International Institute for the Sociology of Law. Other important sites include the monastery and hospice of Bidaurreta and the Church of Saint Michael.

Above the city lies the Sanctuary of Arantzazu, which is known for its Pilgrimage Church of Our Lady. A shepherd is said to have discovered a figure of the Virgin here in 1469. The original 16th Century chapel was replaced in 1950 by a church in a more contemporary style.

Onati is also known for having hosted the Boise State University Campus in the Basque Country program at ETEO. Between about 1974 and 1980 many Idahoans and other Americans of Basque ancestry or not, enjoyed a tremendous education for two semesters on the Basque language, Basque politics and other official leaders* and other topics. The time was very volatile politically, and mirrored Northern Ireland in many ways, since it saw the death of Franco and the transition to a non dictatorial political system.

Church of Our Lady of Aránzazu

External links

Coordinates: 43°01′58″N 2°24′42″W / 43.03278°N 2.41167°W / 43.03278; -2.41167

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