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Home -> History -> Middle Ages and Succeeding Centuries

Middle Ages and Succeeding Centuries

The extensive historical tradition of Silleda continues into the Middle Ages with the founding of Carboeiro Monastery (10th Century) or the construction of Taboada Bridge in the year 912 perhaps over a primitive wooden bridge (Pons Tabulata), hence its name, and Chapa Bridge, the only connection points to Santiago over the rivers Deza and Toxa.

  • Ponte Taboada
  • Cira fort
Location: A Ponte. Taboada parish
Period: Middle Ages reign of Ordoño II
Cronology: Year 912
Coordinates: X:564.730 Y:4.725.525 H:29

Built on the site of an earlier wooden one, the current bridge was erected in 912 as the Latin inscription reads on a nearby rock. The inscription is as follows:


This superb construction can qualify as one of the most important civil works of its time, characterized by its majesty, height and perfection of design. It consists of a single arch, and has a double ramp for transit access. The entrance and exit of the bridge is carried out at an angle after passing along a paved path which is fairly well preserved.

It has endured for years, earthquakes, and floods and above all witnessed countless events such as the passage of nobles, barons, archbishops, pilgrims, carters to Castilla and skirmishes against the French when in 1809 three hundred Trasdezanos were stationed nearby to prevent the invasion by their troops. Even today, as Camiño Real de Santiago, official European pathway, it has the privilege of being the gateway to the council and obligatory leg for the thousands of pilgrims who every year, go to Compostela.

Important forts and towers dating back to the feudal era have now mostly disappeared from Chapa, Cira, Costela, Férveda, Rellas and O Foxo. Only Cira retains the majestic homage tower which bore witness to the struggles between queen Urraca and archbishop Xelmírez who suffered imprisonment between its walls.

Location: O Castelo. Parish: Sta. Baia de Cira.
Age: Military Architecture of the 12th century rebuilt in the 15th century
Coordinates: X:552.499 Y: 4.736.397 H:29
Ownership: Private no visits

The fort stands erect on an outcrop in the location of the same name, where the rivers Ulla and Deza come together. The fort was founded in the 12th century by Bernardo Xoán de Deza. Later Queen Urraca besieged the fort, capturing within it its owner, who gave it to her in exchange for his freedom. After the change in ownership the Queen used the fort as her command center in her fight against Archbishop Xelmírez and so conquer his properties.

Today all that remains standing as witness is the keep of the fortress, destroyed in 1467 by the Irmandiños as a result of a popular uprising. It was raised up again by the most powerful figure of the time, the Count of Altamira. The current owner has managed to convert what were once bloody battlefields surrounding the fort into fertile fields full of fruit trees of well-earned repute.