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The town of Capdepera in Majorca

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City Capdepera - Capdepera view from the castle. Click to enlarge the image.City Capdepera - Crest of the city (author Josep López Arias). Click to enlarge the image.Capdepera is a small town in the north-eastern coast of the island of Majorca, the town has about 3200 inhabitants.

City Capdepera - The north-east view from the castle. Click to enlarge the image.Capdepera is also the capital of a common small area (about 55 km²), but has an extensive coastline of 30 km in length. This very rugged coastline has cliffs and coves shallow - the sandy beaches and crystal clear waters - home to the resorts very popular with tourists: Cala Mesquida, Cala Ratjada, Cala Gat, Son Moll, Sa Pedruscada, Es carregador, Font de Sa Cala and Canyamel.

Capdepera is a historic town, founded in 1300 as a fortified village. This history remains the main attraction of the city, the castle of Capdepera overlooking the city on the north side.

EtymologyEtymology and toponymy
On Roman navigational charts the rocky headland of Punta de Capdepera was named "Caput petrae" ("stone head"). This name derives from the Latin name Capdepera which literally means "pear head".

The first written document in which the place name of "Cap de La Pera" (Capdepera village) appears is the chronicle of King Jaume I, the "Llibre dels Feyts" (Book of Facts), specifically in the column that describes the surrender of the Moors from Menorca to Capdepera.

The inhabitants of Capdepera are called  in Majorcan language Gabellin, and the woman, Gabellina. This name is probably related to the activity of important smuggling in the region of Capdepera the salt tax was a tax on salt and other goods (tobacco, coffee and so on).


Location City Capdepera (author Joan M. Borras). Click to enlarge the image.The municipality of Capdepera is located at the east end of the county Levant (Comarca de Llevant), it is also the most common east of the island of Majorca. It is bordered by two towns, also belonging to the county of the Levant, Artà and Son Servera. Until 1858, these three towns were a single administrative entity, the municipality of Artà.

The boundary to the north with the municipality of Artà begins on the coast between the coves of Cala Mesquida and Cala Torta, then passes to the west by the crest of a rocky part of the Serres de Llevant, culminating 386 meters Puig des Racó.

In the south, the boundary with the municipality of Son Servera through the crest of the Serra de Son Jordi, which culminates at 316 m of Puig de Son Jordi.

The town of Capdepera is roughly in the center of the municipality, 3 km from the coast.

Capdepera is the terminus of the Ma-15 main road that crosses the island of Mallorca through Manacor and Artà. Capdepera is distant 80 km from Palma de Majorca, 27 km from Manacor, and only 8.5 km from Artà.


City Capdepera - City Map. Click to enlarge the image.City Capdepera - The southeast coast view from the castle. Click to enlarge the image.
ChurchThe Church of St. Bartholomew (Església de Sant Bartomeu / Iglesia de San Bartolomé)
Saint Bartholomew, the patron saint of Capdepera is celebrated on August 24.
City Capdepera - The Saint-Barthélemy (Sant Bartomeu Church). Click to enlarge the image in Adobe Stock (new tab).
CastleCastle Capdepera
The Capdepera Castle is the historic core of the city.

Go to Castle of Capdepera.

TowerTower of Canyamel
Another important building of Capdepera is the Tower of Canyamel, of Muslim origin, and unique because of its square plan.

Go to the Tower of Canyamel.

BeachBeaches of CapdeperaMeteorologyWeather forecast
30 kilometers of coast are a series of small rocky coves, long beaches of white sand and towering cliffs.

Es Carregador is one of the coves that festoon the coast of Capdepera and from which opens the bay of Cala Ratjada. Here we still use the old "Escars" small buildings where fishermen store their tools. Cala Moltó, N’Aladern, caleta de Sa Pedruscada and Cova dels Alberdans are some other charming coves that dot these waters.

City Capdepera - Plan resort of Font de sa Cala. Click to enlarge the image.The two largest and most famous of the municipal area of white sandy beaches are those of Cala Agulla and Cala Mesquida. The first is located just fifteen minutes walk from the center of Cala Ratjada and the second 8 kilometers away.

In addition to these two beautiful beaches, those Canyamel, Font de Sa Cala, Cala Gat and Son Moll also offer vast expanses of sand to take full advantage of the sun, the sea and various beach sports.

Among the cliffs, stand those of Lighthouse of Capdepera, but also those of Cap Vermell, so named for their reddish color.

HikingThe Horse Capdepera
Capdepera offers some hiking routes well marked, information sheets with details of routes to follow are available at the tourist information center.
  • From Capdepera to the domain of S’Heretat.
  • De Sa Font de Sa Cala in Coma de Sa Tortuga through a protected natural area.
  • From Capdepera to the Talaia de Son Jaumell.
  • From the port to Torre Esbucada, route along the harbor of Cala Ratjada to the Lighthouse of Capdepera.
  • Visit the wetland of the Torrent de Canyamel and the Caves of S’Ermita.

KnowledgeHistory, geography, arts, traditions, flora…

The Treaty of Capdepera (Tractat Capdepera / Tratado de Capdepera)
In June 1231, two years after conquering Majorca, King Jaume I visited the Cap de Pera, accompanied by a retinue of knights, with the intention of conquering the island of Menorca, still in the hands of the Moors, to Crown of Aragon. However Jaume needed all his strength to the conquest of Valencia and he renounced to Menorca by force. He preferred to use a ploy to intimidate he tells in his column, the "Llibre dels feits del rei en Jacme" ("Book of the Acts of King James"):
"That day, at sunset, we reached the Cape of Pera, which is within sight of Menorca. We called all of our people and their ordered lighting fires in more than 300 locations in the bush here and there to give the impression that a whole army encamped there. And when the Saracens saw this, they sent two senior check with our messengers, and they told them that it was the army of King James, who was preparing to invade Minorca. "

The delegation to go to Menorca to parley was formed Master of the Knights Templar of Majorca, Fray Ramón de Serra, Knight Berenguer de Santa Eugenia and Don Pere Maça, Lord of Sangarrén.

Campfires, which could be seen from Menorca were repeated for several nights, from 12 to 17 June 1231, until the Moors accepted to sign a treaty.

City Capdepera - The Treaty of Capdepera. Click to enlarge the image.The treaty, known as the Treaty of Capdepera was signed June 17, 1231 in Torre d’en Miquel Nunis which was later incorporated into the castle of Capdepera. The treaty was concluded between Capdepera King Jaume I of Aragon and the Qadi of Menorca (Manūrqa), Abu Abd Allah Muhammad, it allowed the Moors to maintain their dominance in Menorca subject to recognize the sovereignty of the Crown of Aragon to pay an annual tribute in kind and help raise once a year, the colors of the Kingdom of Aragon in the castle of Medina Manūrqa (Ciutadella).

Among the signatories were Muslim Abu Said Uthman ibn Hakam al-Qurashi who overthrew Abu Abd Allah Muhammad by a coup in 1234. He ruled until his death in Menorca 1282.

After the death of Jaume I, the recipient of the tribute was Jaume II of Majorca.

The treaty was applied until the conquest of Menorca in 1287.

The Treaty of Capdepera is considered the oldest peace treaty is maintained. The original treaty is the National Library of France in Paris.

Treaty of Capdepera between James I of Aragon and Muslims in Menorca, June 17, 1231
In nomine creatoris Ego alfaqui aboabdille mafomet filius de alfaqui abolanca aly abineixem alcady et alcaid insulea minoricarum per me et per omnes senes et sapientes et per totum populum et habitatores insule supradicte, presentes et futuros habito concilio et volúntate omnium et presentibus alfaqui abolacan aly fratre meo et alfaqui aboacmen abenhacam et alfaqui aboabdille abenmomanna et alcaid abemodien abnalhaçan et alfaqui aboaly abenmoanna et aboabdille abenugaciç et abealbeç ibnap adulcarim et abulabez ibnabenxini et abuasmen abenxairon et haron abenresch et mucatrif abingagen et mahomad abingaqum et mahomad abenbaear et huçayn ibnalfi et mahomad abencaida et aly abenyahex concedimus et recipimus in dominum naturalem et propium vos dominum Iacobum regem aragonum et regni mayoricarum comitem barchinone et dominum montepesulani et heredes vestros tenentes regnum maioricarum et nos facientes vobis homagia fidelitates et iuramenta defeximus nos et renunciamus omnibus dominacionibus convenienciis et fidelitatibus et iuramentis que usque in hunc diem fecerimus alieui persone et per recognicionem dominationis vestre et fidelitatis qua vobis tenetur et tenebimur damus concedimus et liberamus vobis in presenti potestatem castri de minoricis ita quod signum vestrum sive vexillum ponatur per manus quinque personarum vestrarum in sumitate castri et clamatur alta voce ab ipsis personis vestris nomen et dominium vestrum et hoc facto reddatur castrum alfaqui qui mo do est ibi vel illi qui ibi erit substitutus per nos et per vos confirmatus quam potestatem promittimus vobis dare et liberare vel mandatario vestro sine contradicto singulis annis semel in anno quando cumque vos volueritis set ille persone reddito castro alfaqui ut dictum est statim repatriare teneantur. Ad mayorem etiam recognitionem vestre dominationis promittimus vobis et heredibus vestris uel mandatariis vestris dare singulis annis nonagentos almudinos ordei et centum tritici. In unoquoque scilicet almudino contineantur centum almudes de mut abohag quos persolvemus in festo sancti Iohannis mensis iunii de collecta uniuscuiusque anni et centum cabecas inter boves et vacas qui sint de duobus annis usque ad sex et trescentes cabecas inter capras et capronos et ducentes cabegas inter moltones et oves et duo quintaria de mantega et habest in quolibet quintario quatuor pesas et bestiarium detur nuncio vestro singulis annis in mense marcii in litore maris ante almudainam de portu minoricarum quibus traditis mandatario vestro ipse de cetero sus sumptibus et expensis custodiat supradicta.

Item promittimus vos et homines vestros et res eorum iuvare et deffendere bona fide toto posse contra omnes homines et facere pro vobis et pro mandato vestro pacem et guerram infra insulam nostram tamen nec recipiemus aliquem cursarium uel inimicum vestrum in terra uel mari. Item si aliquod lignum christianorem incurreret naufragium in insula minoricarum promittimus omnia bona illa colligere et servare et reddere domino suo vero uel vobis vobis nisi dominus verus inveniretur. Et si forte esset lignum sarracenorum bona illa possimus retinera et illa ponere in opere castri. Et eodem modo fiat si lignum nostrum de minoricis deveniret in aliquo loco dominacionis vestre. Item promittimus quod si captivus aliquis exiret uel fugeret de regno maioricarum et veniret ad minoricas quod rettamus illum nisi erit speciali de insula minoricarum set de alio loco non teneamur. Item omnes quintas lignorum hominum terre vestre concedimus vobis quod eas habeatis set de aliis hominibus qui non fuerint de dominacione vestra habeatis vos medietatem et nos aliam mediatatem ad opus castri. Que euinte colligantur per manum alfaqui qui est ibi modo et erit post ipsum.

Et nos Iacobus rex predictus per nos et nostros heredes et nostras homines promittimus vos omnes habitatores minoricarum et singulos defendere et salvare et omnia bona vestra in terra et mari. Et per gratiam specialem et honorem quam vobis volumus facere concedimus vobis quod nullus christianus uel ludeus possit habitaTe continue in insula minoricarum nisi esset de voluntate vestra. Et propter hoc concedimus et confirmamus pro alfaqui super vos in nostro loco venerabilem et legalem alfaqui qui modo est ibi nomine aboabdille abenixem ut sit alfaqui in tota vita sua. Et post obitum eius liceat vobis eligere alfaqui de vobis aliis quern volueritis et sint semper alfaqui et alcayd et alcadi et almoxariff de vobis. Et quando eligeritis alfaqui facialis nobis scire per vestrum nuncium et literas causa ut confirmemus ipsum. Et nos debemus mitere nuncium nostrum tunc qui accipiat iuramentum ab illo ut servet nobis omnia supradicta. Et si forte inter vos non eoncordabitis de eleccione nos possimus eligere per alcayd de unum de vobis et constituere cum consilio senium vestrorum.

Item concedimus et donamus vobis quod quandocumque aliquis uel aliqui vestrum venire volueritis in loco quolibet terre nostre causa negociandi sitis salvi et securi et franqui et liberi de pedatico et de leçda et de omni demands que possit fieri causa mercaterie. Item concedimus vobis quod quandocumque ligna sarracenorum causa negociandi venerint ad minoricas dum ibi in terra uel in portu fuerint non capiantur a nobis uel graventur nec ab hominibus nostris Sed exito de portu non teneamur inde. Item concedimus quod quilibet habitator minoricarum cum voluntate de alfaqui qui ibi fuerit possit se transfferre ad morandum ubi voluerit in terra sarracenorum uel christianorum. Et si venerit ad mayoricas quod sit de furo aliorum sarracenorum qui fuerint de illa partida in qua venerit. Item promittimus quod si eventu gencium uel inimicorum auxilium vobis fuerit necessarium quod quando vestrum nuncium habebimus succurems vobis et faciemus vobis auxilium et deffenderemus vos sicut nostros homines proprios. Et quandocumque illum nuncium vos destinare oporteruit pro sucursu exigendo et fuerit apud mayoricas quod ille qui teneat nostrum locum guidet illum et ducat illum ad nos salvum at securum. Denique promittimus quod si aliquis hominum nostrorum ceperit sarracenum habitatorem minoricarum uel in loco aliquo terra nostre de cetero fuerit captivatus redderemus illum absolutum et liberum cum omnibus rebus suis.

I, the alfaqui Aboabdille Mafomet, son of Aly alfaqui Abolança Abineixem alcady Alcaid and the island of Minorca, on my behalf and on behalf of all former and scholars, and to all the people and the people of the Island aforesaid present and future, and having taken counsel with the agreement of all in the presence of my brother Ali alfaqui Abolaçan, the alfaqui Aboaçmen Abenhacam of Valfaqui Aboabdille Abenmomanna, the Alcaid Abemodien Abnalhaçan, the alfaqui Aboali Abenmoanna, of Aboabdille Abenugaçic, of Abealbeç ibnap Adulcarim, of Abulabez Ibnabenxini, of Abuasmen Abenxairon (plus seven other names), agree to receive you, James Lord, King of Aragon and kingdom of Majorca, Count of Barcelona and Lord of Montpellier, and your owners heirs of the kingdom of Majorca, as natural and proper lord. Paying you homage, loyalty oaths and we unmake and we disclaim any domination agreement and loyalty oath that we could lend up to date anyone. In recognition of your domination and loyalty which we held you, we give you, and now concede deliver potestas Castle Menorca, so that your sign or banner will be placed in the hands of five of your People at the highest point of the castle, and be proclaimed aloud by the same people your name and dominion, and that fact that the castle is made ​​to alfaqui therein now or in the that will be confirmed by you to our site. This potestas, we promise to give you and issue to you or your agent, without opposition, once a year when you want, but these people are required to report immediately to the castle the alfaqui and that he was told. For better recognition of your dominance, we promise to give you further year to you and your successors almuts 900 barley and 100 wheat… hundred head of cattle and cows from two to six, three hundred goats, two hundred sheep and sheep and two quintals of butter…

We promise you also defend you and your people and their property in good faith and with all our strength against every man, and to our name and order your peace and war in our island without receiving pirate nor enemy to you on land and sea If a Christian ship is a shipwreck on the island of Menorca, we promise to collect and preserve the property that would find and make its owner and even if you it can not be identified. If it is a Muslim ship, we can keep his property and use it for the work of the castle. And he goes the same for ships of Menorca in places of your domination. We also promise that if any prisoner out or flees the kingdom of Majorca and Minorca comes, we’ll make it unless he is a native of Minorca. Similarly we concede that you have the Quintas vessels belonging to men of your land, but as regards those men who do not belong to your rule, that you have half and another for us work of the castle. These Quintas are perceived through the alfaqui in office.

And we, the aforesaid king James, for us, our heirs and our men, we promise each and every one of the inhabitants of Menorca to defend and protect you and all your goods on land and at sea, and by special grace and honor we want you to do, no Christian or Jew can not reside continuously in the island of Menorca otherwise with your consent. And because of this we concede and confirm as of alfaqui with authority over to our place, the venerable and legal alfaqui currently in place named Aboabdille Abenixem to be alfaqui his life. And after his death, that you be allowed to choose from you the alfaqui you want, and the alfaqui, the Alcaid, the al-Qadi and almoxerif always be taken from you. And when you choose a alfaqui, you do know we sent a letter, so that we confirm it. We will then send you an envoy who receives his oath to observe all the above things. And if it happened that you do not accordiez you on this choice, we can choose one of you to Alcaid and establish agreement with your ex.

We grant to you and give you further when one or some of you want to come in any place of our earth to do business, you are sound, safe and free from any toll leude and any demand due to trade. We also concede that when the Saracens ships come to Menorca to trade, they are not captured by us, either on earth or in the port, or by our men, without obligation for us Once out of the harbor. We concede that every inhabitant of Menorca with the agreement of Yalfaqui duties, can be transferred to dwell where he wants to land Saracens or Christians. And if he comes in Majorca, that under the right (fuero) other Saracens, who will be in the region where he comes. Finally, we promise that if someone takes our men inhabitants of Menorca a Saracen or if any captured anywhere in our land, we will make him his freedom with all his possessions.

Datum apud capud Petre. XV kls. iulii, anno Domini Millesimo CC tricesimo primo.

Signum Iacobi Dei gratia regis aragonum et regni mayoricarum, comitis Barellinone et domini Montispesulani.

Huius rei testes sunt: F. prepositus tarrachonensis; frater R. de Serra, comendator domus Templi Mayoricarum; frater R. de Pelarrava; frater Bn. de Altaripa; B. de Sancta Eugenia; B. de Foxa; Cainarius; G. R. de Pavo; Assalitus de Guai; Sancius de Orta; P. Maca; Garcia de Orta; Dompnus Ladro; Lupus Ex. de Lucia.

Signum Guilelmi Scribe qui mandato domini regis et predietorum sarracenorum liane cartam scribi fecit loco die et anno prefixis.

Signum Petri Mercerii notarii publici Maioricarum, testis. Signum Michelis Rotlandi notar publici Maoricarum testis.

Nos Poncius Dei gratis maioricensis episcopus notum facimus universes hoc presens transcriptum sive transsumptum fuisse sumptum per manum lacobi Mercerii publici Maioricarum notarii de quodam instrumento sigillato sigillo dependenti bone memorie domini lacobi Dei gratia regis aragonum et secundum morem morem et formam qui et que consuevit servari in civitate Maioricarum in transcrìbendo instrumentis de suis origenalibus et quod tanta fides consuevit adhiberi sumptis seu transcriptis sicut origenalibus suis. dum cum sint scripta et transcripta secundum dictum morem et secundum sollempnitatem per quam presens transcriptum de dicto orìgenali et quod Petrus Mercerii et Michelis Rotlandi de quibus in presenti causa fit mentìo et in ipsa subsignantur et etiam Iacobus Mercerii qui hoc transcriptum scripsit et etiam subsignavit erant et (fuerunt) notarii publici Maioricarum et officio notaris publice utebantur anno et die quibus subscripserunt et subsignaverunt, in quorum testimonium nostrum sìgillum cereum presenti carte seu transcripto duximus apendendum.

Signum Iacobi Mercerii notarii publici Maioricarum qui hoc translatum scripsit et cum originali instrumento comprobavit et clausit XVIII° kalendas marcii anno Domìni Millesimo CC° LXXX° primo eum raso et emendato in lines XIIII ubi dicitur pro et in linea XVIII ubi dicitur Minoricas.

Given Capdepera 15 Kalends of July, the year of the Lord 1231. Signum of James by the grace of God, King of Aragon and kingdom of Majorca, Count of Barcelona and Lord of Montpellier.

Witnesses of this act: F. prepositus Tarragona, Brother R. Serra commander of the house of the Temple of Majorca, Brother R. of Pelarrava, Brother B. of Altaripa; B. Sancta Eugenia, B. Foxa; Cainarius, GR Pavo; Assalitus of Gudal; Sancius Orta, P. Maça, Garcia de Orta; Domnus Ladro, Lupus Ex Lucia. Signum Guillem Scriba that the order of the king and the aforesaid Saracens did write this charter at the place, day and year indicated above.

Miquel BARCELÓ, "El tractat de Capdepera de 17 de juny de 1231 entre Jaume I i Abu ’Abd Allah Muhammad de Manûrqa. Sobre la funcion social i politica dels fuqahâ’" in Sobre Mayùrqa, Quaderns de Ca la Gran Cristiana /2-1984, Palma de Mallorca, 1984, p. 82-84 (original: BN Paris, Ms. Latin 9261).

Translation Country of Islam and the Latin world. Xe-thirteenth century. Texts and documents, UMR 5648, Lyon, 2000 doc.70

Other topicsOther topics

Filiation of the topics
Balearic Islands > Majorca > County of Llevant > Capdepera
More detailed topics
The town of Capdepera in Majorca - The castle
The village of Cala Mesquida in Majorca
The village of Cala Rajada (Cala Ratjada) in Majorca
The village of Canyamel in Majorca
Close topics
The town of Artà in Majorca
The natural park of the peninsula of Llevant in Majorca
The town of Capdepera in Majorca
The town of Son Servera in Majorca
The town of Sant Llorenç des Cardassar in Majorca
The town of Manacor in Majorca
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Interactive Map of the island of Majorca
The island of Majorca - Booklet of the OET
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The island of Majorca - Booklet of gastronomy
The island of Majorca - Map of public transport
The island of Majorca in the Balearic Islands - The History
The County of Palma de Mallorca
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The county of Raiguer in Majorca
The County of the Plain of Majorca (Pla de Mallorca / Llanura de Mallorca)
The County of Levant (Llevant / Levante) in Majorca
The County of Mid-day (Migjorn) in Majorca
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