Orihuela city hall gets tough with Cataluña over theft of historic book

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Orihuela city hall gets tough with Cataluña over theft of historic book
ANCIENT VOLUME: Heritage councillor Rafael Almagro with a facsimile copy of the Llibre dels Repartiments Photo credit: Orihuela town hall

ORIHUELA is more determined than ever to recover its 13th century Llibre dels Repartiments, now in Cataluña.

Historic Heritage councillor Rafael Almago announced on January 4 that city hall intends to take legal action against the Generalitat Catalana within a month.

Cataluña’s regional government had not acknowledged Orihuela’s request made last August to return the book within three months and more than 90 days later city hall was still waiting for a reply, the councillor said.

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“In compliance with the plenary session’s unanimously-approved mandate, city hall’s legal team will have completed the litigation process within a month,” he announced.

The Llibre dels Repartiments is the city’s own mini-Domesday Book detailing land ownership after the city was retaken from the Moors in 1243.

It was stolen from Orihuela between 1907 and 1908, reappearing at some time between 1920 and 1933 when it was acquired by Barcelona’s provincial council, the Diputacion.


“This book is the starting point for a political and territorial reorganisation after the reconquest of the Bajo Segura,” Orihuela city hall stated in the document it sent to the Catalan government in August.

“It is also one of the most important documentary sources for studying and understanding Orihuela between the 13th and 14th century.”


Linda came to Spain to live when she was 24, just over 52 years ago, and her husband is Spanish. She began writing for English-language local newspapers in the mid-1970s and hasn’t stopped since! She leads a Spanish life, which she believes is vital when conveying the news to English-speaking residents, and along the way she produced two editions of Expand Your Spanish, helping English-speakers to enlarge their knowledge of the language. She was excited to be in at the birth of the Euro Weekly News in 1999 and is still passionately writing for the paper 22 years later.

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