MAP BCN 1714: Sites of repression. The aftermath of September 11
Barcelona Cultura
MAP BCN 1714: Sites of repression. The aftermath of September 11

Passeig del Born

Houses in the Born neighbourhood were demolished in order to open an esplanade separating the Ciutadella fortress from the city. The house at number 18, Passeig del Born stands on the perimeter of this demolition zone.

 

 

 

 

La Ciutadella
[no longer standing]

This army fortress, with its pentagonal ground plan, was built between 1716 and 1748. The plans for this “citadel” were drawn up by the Flemish military engineer Joris Prosper van Verboom (1665-1744), who became its first governor, but did not live to see the complex finished. The citadel was never used to defend the city from attack by an enemy army, but was built as an instrument of repression against the people of Barcelona. From 1719 to 1866, many political prisoners were confined in its Sant Joan tower, which became known as the Catalan Bastille. Finally, after countless petitions had been launched for its removal, the Ciutadella was demolished in 1869. Only three buildings remain standing today from the original structure: the Arsenal, which now houses the Catalan Parliament; the chapel, now a military parish church; and the house of the military governor, converted into a secondary school.

 

Portal de Mar [no longer standing]

For twelve years, from 1715 to 1727, the first thing that those travelling by sea would see on reaching the city was the head of General Josep Moragues in a cage, hanging on high from a pole, demonstrating the remorseless repression that befell all those who dared to resist the authority of Philip V. The Austrian ambassador and the general’s wife pressed the Bourbon authorities to remove Moragues’ head, citing the 1725 Treaty of Vienna, according to which the House of Austria renounced its rights to the Spanish monarchy and Philip V permitted the return of exiles and freed those imprisoned due to the conflict.

Convent of Sant Agustí Vell (between Carrer del Comerç and Carrer Tantarantana)

The convent became one of the main scenes of the final battle final, as Colonel Pau de Thoar, leading the Conception Regiment, attempted to make a stand there against the Bourbon advance. After the siege had ended, Philip V’s troops converted the convent into an army barracks. In 1716, part of the site was demolished as part of the plan to build the Ciutadella, and from 1720 the remaining sections housed the Royal Academy of Mathematics. The Augustinian community moved to the Raval neighbourhood, and construction began of a new convent in Carrer de l’Hospital began in 1727 and was completed in 1750. The original convent was partially reconstructed (1736-1748), whilst the part most in ruins was converted into barracks, inaugurated in 1750.